Nothingface - 2000
|Origin||Washington D.C., U.S.|
|Years active||1993–2004, 2005–09|
|Labels||DCide, TVT, S6|
|Associated acts||Hellyeah, Knives Out!, In for the Kill, Kingdom of Snakes, Perfect Enemy, Coldwhitechrist, Blessed In Black (formerly Sever), Smile Culture, Ingredient17|
Nothingface was an American heavy metal band from Washington, D.C., formed in 1993. The band achieved moderate success, as evidenced by their 2001 single "Bleeder" peaking at number 32 on the U.S. Mainstream Rock Chart and touring with high-profile acts such as Soulfly, Pantera, and Ministry, as well as the Tattoo the Earth and Ozzfest 2003 tours.
- 1 History
- 2 Musical style
- 3 Members
- 4 Timeline
- 5 Discography
- 6 Unreleased songs
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Early days, self-titled album and Pacifier (1993–97)
Formed in 1993, the band's original line-up consisted of vocalist David Gabbard, guitarist Tom Maxwell, bassist Bill Gaal and drummer Chris Houck. The band started when Chris Houck put an ad out in a local magazine called Rox Magazine in Baltimore. Tom Maxwell, who was living in Baltimore at the time, contacted Chris about the ad, and said he was interested in getting together and jamming. Tom sent a tape with music that he had been working on. Chris, who was living with Bill Gaal at the time in Damascus, Maryland, got the tape and they were both impressed with what Tom had sent. From there they got together and jammed on covers of Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, Jane's Addiction and clicked. They released three tapes with this lineup. These demos featured a grunge and hard rock-influenced sound, in contrast to the heavy metal sound the band would become renowned for later on in their career. Gabbard left the band in 1995, due to disagreements over the heavier musical direction Nothingface was heading in. At this point Matt Holt took over singing duties. Matt Holt became a part of the band as a result of Ingredient 17 (Matt and Tommy Sickles' band) who had been recording at Chris and Bill's house in Damascus. Tom Maxwell heard the material Matt had been doing with Ingredient 17 and thought Matt would be a good match to replace Dave. The band then recorded a self-titled album featuring ten songs. DCide then discovered Nothingface, and they re-recorded the album, with six of the songs featured on their debut album Pacifier, released in October 1996 
An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity (1998–99)
The band's second album An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity was released on September 22, 1998 via Mayhem Records. The band toured in support of the album throughout the United States with Stuck Mojo, Sam Black Church, Helmet and Ministry.
Violence and turmoil (2000–02)
30 second sample of "Can't Wait for Violence" from the album Violence.
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Two years later, the band released their third album Violence on October 10, 2000. It featured a single called "Bleeder" which peaked at number 32 on the Mainstream Rock chart. The album also peaked at 24 on the Heatseekers Chart and 37 on the Top Independent Chart. It was the band's most successful album, and their first under the semi-major label TVT Records. Chris Houck recorded drums for this album but had to leave the group due to medical issues that would prevent him from touring. He was replaced by Tommy Sickles of Ingredient 17 fame (Matt and Tommy's band before Nothingface).
In early 2001, Bill Gaal left the group to pursue a career in music production and engineering. He was replaced by Jerry Montano, formerly of The Deadlights. A few months later, Gaal returned. During the 2001–02 interval between Violence and their next album, Nothingface experienced significant turmoil with lead singer Matt Holt seeing his house burn down, Tom Maxwell's mother dying and bassist Bill Gaal divorcing his wife, leading to the band nearly breaking up.
Skeletons and breakup (2003–04)
30 second sample of the Skeletons song "Murder is Masturbation.
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The band released their fourth album Skeletons on April 22, 2003 via TVT Records. The album is considered their most diverse, featuring some of the band's heaviest as well as most melodic material. That summer, the band played on the second-stage of the popular Ozzfest tour.
Explains Matt Holt further:
|“||Well, one of the main things was we went through hell on our old record label. It seemed like toward the end on Ozzfest they were just doing...the littlest they could do...the beginning of the end was somewhere in Buffalo, New York, on Ozzfest when they left us sitting at a truck stop with our bus for, like, nine hours with no gas...because they didn’t feel like paying our tour support. When we’re on the road playing headlining shows, we pay for everything ourselves, but on Ozzfest you don’t get paid, so we’re kind of relying on them and they were pissed about it. It makes no sense because we’re playing in front of 20,000 people a day; what’s your problem? So I got out on stage and there’s this guy from TVT Records there, and “Everybody raise your middle fingers.” So everybody raised them. “Yell, ‘Fuck you, TVT Records.’” So they got pissed. “Don’t you ever do that again, blah blah. We’ll give you the money to finish the tour. You better finish....” So, we took the money and went straight home, said, “Fuck you. We’re never playing another show on TVT again.” So, realizing that we’re still under contract with TVT and just the stress of everything, we all just kind of went our separate ways.||”|
Bill Gaal went on to form Kingdom of Snakes with former members of the band Gunfighter. Their debut EP features vocal work from Matt Holt on one track. In early 2004, Gaal and Holt announced the formation of a new band called Perfect Enemy, while Tom Maxwell and Tommy Sickles announced the formation of Coldwhitechrist with Jerry Montano and Chad Gray, whose tenure was short-lived due to prior commitments. The trio later announced the formation of Sever, which later became Blessed in Black and also included ex-Skrape vocalist Billy Keeton. Keeton eventually left in late 2005 and the band dissolved.
Reformation and second break-up (2005–11)
On November 24, 2005, a posting on the Jägermeister website showed Nothingface as the opening act for Disturbed in a 2006 show. The line-up for this show was Matt Holt, Tom Maxwell, Jerry Montano and Tommy Sickles. The band released two new songs online and went on to do a small U.S. club tour that winter/spring, bringing along Crossbreed and Silent Civilian.
Later that year, guitarist Tom Maxwell and bassist Jerry Montano began a band called Hellyeah with Vinnie Paul, formerly of Pantera and Damageplan, as well as Chad Gray and Greg Tribbett of Mudvayne. They released their debut album on April 10, 2007 via Epic Records. Following its release, Jerry Montano was fired from the band after allegedly assaulting Tom Maxwell and making gun threats while drunk at the album release party.
During the first half of April 2008, the band sent out a Myspace bulletin and changed their default profile picture to one of the band in the studio, signaling that they were indeed working on new material. On the 20th of May, they posted a short YouTube clip which features them performing and sent out a Myspace bulletin containing said clip. Four days later, on May 24, it was announced through Blabbermouth.net that original members Bill Gaal and Chris Houck have rejoined Nothingface, with Tommy Sickles now playing drums for the L.A.-based band Noise Within. The band then released several additional "teaser" videos and on February 19, 2009, announced that "the band is at Wrightway Studios in Baltimore MD for the next 2 weeks writing and recording."
The re-release of their self-titled album with remastered songs and new artwork was released on April 8, 2009.
On August 14, 2009, it was announced via Blabbermouth.net that Nothingface would be disbanding again, with Maxwell citing Holt's lack of work ethic as the main reason for an unfinished album three years in the making, as well as his decision to leave. Matt Holt contests Maxwell's brush-off, but refuses to condemn in reply. Similarly, Houck would later state that Maxwell's statement is "only one side of the story" and that "there were a lot of other factors involved in all of this beyond anything with (Holt)." In a summer 2011 interview, Bill Gaal spoke publicly about the split, stating, "It’s one of those situations where everyone’s story will be different. Broadly, what it boiled down to is that we’re all older now, we all have different responsibilities. Making everything line up time-wise is difficult– I’m in LA, Chris is out in North Carolina, Tom’s out on tour with Hellyeah most of the year, Matt stays home in Baltimore now. And me and Tom have families now, too. You don’t just get together and write a great song, especially with Nothingface. It takes a chunk of time, and we’d always rework songs hundreds of times before releasing them. We only had a couple of intense, 1- or 2-week writing sessions and really, we just ran out of time. We had to get a lot done in a short amount time before we had to get back to other things we had going on. So the timing didn’t work out, but that being said, it doesn’t rule out anything for the future. As pissed-off as Nothingface was back in the day, we’ve definitely all cooled down, and if we could just find one week where all of us were just calm enough and got together, we could do it."
On September 1, 2009, the band released "One Thousand Lies" on their official website. It is a rough "first draft" demo and was recorded in March 2008. On November 13, 2009 the band uploaded "D2" which is another rough "first draft" demo with no vocals.
In early 2011, the band launched their brand new website Nothingface.com. Videos linked to YouTube were present so was a Nothingface wiki, forum, guest book, photo gallery and a section for fans to upload their own videos of Nothingface music. Links to other bands were present also. The website has since been suspended for unknown reasons.
In a Talk Toomey podcast interview on October 3, 2016, former guitarist Tom Maxwell stated that a Nothingface reunion is "not gonna happen" and that he and Holt "don't get along". Maxwell elaborated by stating that "there’s just nothing anymore. There’s no communication, there’s no desire." 
Matt Holt passed away on April 15, 2017.
30 second sample of the Pacifier song "Undercut".
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Nothingface have been described as heavy metal, alternative metal and nu metal. The band's first album in 1996, featured a sound that was compared to nu metal band Korn. Some critics described it as a "Korn clone". Although with their second album An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity, they abandoned that sound and featured the heavy metal and alternative metal sound they became known for, continuing on their next releases. Many critics deny that Nothingface is a nu metal band due to their use of guitar solos and absence of elements from hip-hop and other characteristics featured in nu metal. The band's sound consists of aggressive heavy metal guitar riffs, growled vocals deriving from death metal or grindcore, shouting and melodic vocals. Singer Matt Holt's more melodic vocals have been compared to Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam. Critics have praised Holt's singing style for being able to mix harshness with accessibility.
- Final lineup
- Matt Holt – vocals (1995–2004, 2005–09; died 2017)
- Tom Maxwell – guitar (1993–2004, 2005–09)
- Bill Gaal – bass, programming, backing vocals (1993–2001, 2001–04, 2007–09)
- Chris Houck – drums (1993–2000, 2008–09)
- David Gabbard – vocals (1993–95)
- Jerry Montano – bass (2001, 2005–07)
- Tommy Sickles – drums (2000–04, 2005–08)
|Date of Release||Title||Label|
|September 22, 1998||An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity||DCide/Mayhem|
|September 5, 2000||Violence||TVT Records|
|April 22, 2003||Skeletons||TVT Records|
|Year||Song||US Hot 100||U.S. Modern Rock||U.S. Mainstream Rock||Album|
|1998||"Breathe Out"||-||-||-||An Audio Guide To Everyday Atrocity|
|1998||"The Sick"||-||-||-||An Audio Guide To Everyday Atrocity|
- "Breathe Out"
- "Ether" was featured on the Freddy vs. Jason soundtrack.
- "Down In Flames" was featured on The Texas Chainsaw Massacre soundtrack.
- "Bleeder" was featured on the 3000 Miles to Graceland soundtrack.
With David Gabbard
|1993||"On the Edge"||3:11||Braid|
|1993||"Confusion (Ultra Sane)"||6:04||Braid|
|1993||"Fast as Fuck"||4:16||Braid|
|1994||"On The Edge (newer version)"||3:11||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Instant G (newer version)"||3:16||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Mommi (newer version)"||5:24||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Evil Man"||4:35||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Hate You"||4:21||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Piss"||4:00||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Circle (newer version)"||3:20||The Architect of So Much Evil|
|1994||"Grave"||3:49||The Architect of So Much Evil|
With Matt Holt
|1996||"Carousel"||4:04||1995 Self-titled album|
|1996||"Deprive"||3:14||1995 Self-titled album|
|1996||"Godkill"||4:07||1995 Self-titled album|
|1996||"Severed"||4:56||1995 Self-titled album|
|1997||"3 Rooms"||2:55||Audio Guide Demo|
|1997||"Peeling Skynard"||N/A||Audio Guide Demo|
|1999||"How Long"||4:26||Violence Demo|
|2001||"Everything I Hate"||3:58||Skeletons Demo|
|2002||"The Principles of Gangsterism"||3:14||Skeletons Demo|
|2002||"In the Wake Of"||5:11||Skeletons Demo|
|2005||"Walking on Bodies"||3:38||Demo 2005|
|2005||"Let It Burn"||2:44||Demo 2005|
|2008||"One Thousand Lies"||4:16||2008 Demos|
|2008||"The End"||1:25||2008 Demos|
Most of these songs have been leaked and can be found online, and recently Nothingface started releasing demos on their website, a studio recording of "3 Rooms" was released on May 26. The track "Everything I Hate" was released on December 4, 2009 on the official website under the name "Hate Song Demo." "Peeling Sky-nard" was a song that got cut from "An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity," and it is unknown if it will ever be released to the public.
- "Ex-Nothingface Bassist Bill Gaal Talks About In For The Kill And The Benefits Of DIY". Metal Insider. August 3rd 2011. Retrieved: September 7th, 2015
- "Bill Gaal Interview: "I Never Close The Door On Nothingface"". Guitar International. August 1st, 2011. Retrieved: September 7th, 2015
- "Ex-Nothingface Drummer Returns In Smile Culture". theprp.com. December 31st 2013
- "Nothingface - Heavy and Original to the Bone". Kaffeine Buzz. June 26th, 2003. Retrieved: September 7th, 2015
- Graham Finney. "Nothingface Interview". Planet-Loud. Archived from the original on 2002-03-18. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
- "Nothingface - Biography - Metal Storm".
- Taylor, Jason D. (1998-09-22). "An Audio Guide to Everyday Atrocity - Nothingface : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- Henderson, Alex (2000-09-05). "Violence - Nothingface : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Violence - Nothingface : Awards". AllMusic. 2000-09-05. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- Alex Henderson. "Skeletons". AllMusic.
- Henderson, Alex (2003-04-22). "Skeletons - Nothingface : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- Sharpe-Young, Garry (2005). New Wave of American Heavy Metal. Zonda Books. p. 64. ISBN 0-9582684-0-1.
- "NOTHINGFACE Split Up, Bandmembers Launch New Project". Blabbermouth.Net. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Interview". Live-Metal.net. Retrieved 2014-08-23.
- Gaal and Holt formed the band Perfect Enemy
- "BLESSED IN BLACK: Former NOTHINGFACE, SKRAPE Members To Enter Studio In June". Blabbermouth.Net. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "BLESSED IN BLACK Confirm Singer's Departure". Blabbermouth.Net. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "News: Nothingface reunited with most of standard line-up intact - Blacker than Danzig's asshole!". Metalrage.com. 2005-11-24. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "SILENT CIVILIAN Frontman: 'NOTHINGFACE Has Treated Us Like Family'". Blabbermouth.Net. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Online Music Magazine". defyUnlearn.com. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "BREAKING NEWS: Departed HELLYEAH Bassist Made Gun Threat". The Metal Den. 2007-05-20. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Nothingface Enters The Studio, Posts Video Footage - in Metal News". Metal Underground.com. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Nothingface [Explicit]: Nothingface: Official Music". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Nothingface call it quits....again". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2009-08-14.
- "Nothingface: March 2008 Demo Recording Available For Free Download". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2009-09-02.
- "Bill Gaal Interview". The Silver Tongue. Retrieved 2011-08-30.
- "This website is currently unavailable.".
- "Tom Maxwell on Nothingface Status: 'There's Just Nothing'". Loudwire.
- "Loud Rock News". CMJ New Music Report. 59 (632): 36. 23 August 1999. ISSN 0890-0795.
- "Nothingface - Biography by MacKenzie Wilson".
- Heavy metal at House of Blues Doug Elfman. April 17, 2001. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Nothingface: Violence". DrownedInSound.
- "Nothingface "Skeletons" (tvt)". The Morning Call.
- Taylor, Jason D. (1997-02-06). "Pacifier - Nothingface : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Review: Nothingface - "Violence"". Blistering.com. 2007-11-22. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- "Nothingface - Violence Review from". Music Emissions. 2003-04-02. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
- Official Facebook Page
- Nothingface at AllMusic
- Anne Carlini's interview of Matt Holt
- Live-Metal.net's interview of Matt Holt
- Gibson's interview of Tom Maxwell
- Kaffeine Buzz: interview of Tommy Sickles
- The Underground Scene: interview of Bill Gaal
- Blabbermouth story about Bill Gaal