Manhattan Skyline is a norwegian mathcore band, based in Oslo that use their influences from metal, hardcore, contemporary music, jazz/fusion, electronica/gabba and subconciously (but luckily rarelyand only drum-wise) the odd hip hop to create a unique blend of hard-hitting rock for the likes of the Dillinger Escape Plan, Converge and Botch, but also with mellow passages reminiscent of Cult Of Luna and Red Sparrowes. After their performance at the 2005 Bodø Hardcorefestival they were praised as "One of the fastest and most technical bands in Norway today" by The Faceless Masses, and they will definitely try to live up to that description whith their forthcoming debut full-length album.
Manhattan Skyline was formed in 2002 in the norwegian city of Oslo, by drummer Steffen, guitarist Fredrik and vocalist Hans Marius. After playing in a bunch of crappy hardcore/metal/punk bands that didn't go nowhere, they decided to start a band that would challenge them a lot more than their previous bands. Further down the road members of Kaospilot, Slingshot Idol, The Break Quintet and Next Life joined (and left).
In october 2003 they recorded their debut release, wich turned out as the "Tarantula Arms ep". This was a 3" mcd that consisted of seven songs featuring off-time rythm patterns, furious riffage and a whole lot of intensity.
Bassist Anders, (bass stand-in for a long time, now ripping it up in Kaospilot..) and guitar player Christian, parted with the band after a while. After a whole lot of searching and several part time bassists, the band tried their luck with a friend of one of their classmates who had formerly done some stand-in bassplaying with norwegian hardcoreact c-t Prevail. His name was Sigurd and he fitted the band like a glove (a hard-rocking boxingglove embedded with skulls and spikes, of course).
Jørgen, who at an earlier point had handled the bass-duties, played guitar with the band for a year or so, until the band parted ways with him. Finally guitarist Fredrik met his other musical half, this 19 year old kid, formerly in Oslobased hardcoreact In Dialogue With Radiometer. His name was Even, he could shred like there was no tomorrow and as an added bonus he attended a musicians school where the band could rehearse for free. So finally, after 3 years, 3 guitarists and 4 bassplayers, Manhattan Skyline finally functioned as the well-oiled machinery they had always wanted to be.
Manhattan Skyline contributed with a song called "A) Spitting Milk or B) Swallow Or Drown" for React With Protest's Emo Armageddon 7" compilation, which was released in febuary 2005 and included bands such as Funeral Diner, The Birds Are Spies They Report to the Trees, Suis La Lune and Catena Collapse. Throughout 2005 and during the beginning of 2006, the band was also writing and arranging new songs for their first full-length album. Presently, the band is laying down the tracks in the studio with producer Petter Kaos from Kaospilot, hopefully rapidly enough to have the recording done in tme for a late 2006/early 2007 release.
The new material, as presented through a handful of gigs the past year, is far more complicated and aggressive, but at the same time, the musical landscapes presented to the listener is a lot more diversed, roaming from the complexed and heavy, to the subtle and soothing. Influences span from seventies fusion/jazz groups like King Crimson and Weather Report, electronic stuff similar to Squarepusher, Aphex Twin and Venetian Snares, as well as post rock groups like Fugazi, Shellac, Quicksand, all the way to a handfull of noisy hardcore bands like Botch, Dillinger Escape Plan,Refused, Converge and Coalesce. In other words, it will be everything from devastating and mathy, to quiet and fragile.
During the fall of 2006 the band will hit the international road, bringing their musical mayhem to the English and Scottish countrysides, for a two-week UK tour. Check out the bands page on MySpace or it's a trap for tour dates and venues.
Tarantula Arms EP
"Members of Kaospilot and The Slingshot Idol blast through seven songs in barely 13 minutes on their dazzling debut EP appropriately named "Tarantula Arms". Displaying intricate stop and go drumming and herky jerky chaos riffage of the highest calibre this supergroup have made a record that is way too over the top and lound to ignore. This is extremly angry and screamy music not for the faint of heart."
-Electric Human Project
"An excellent Norwegian group. Rapid, chaotic and straightforwardly nutcase music. Good violence with a good quite fast key metal played noisy. Some good station-wagons for half-compartment play.. Mmmh a delight j'adore!!! I wonder what its like to be in this group because it consists of the members and ex-members of Kaospilot and The Slingshot Idol, two groups which are already very very very well! Here one continues in a register already visited by Kaospilot… without nevertheless resembling it too much. However the fans of Kaospilot will adore!! In short truths is delirious of metal quite fast chaos emo played. A pure moment of pleasure here."
-Shoot Me Again
Hans Marius Midtgarden - vocals
Fredrik Melby - guitar
Even Bekkedal - guitar
Sigurd Mæle - bass
Steffen Sether - drums
*October, 2003 Tarantula Arms EP Audio Is A War EP
*Febuary 11, 2005 V/A Emo Armageddon React With Protest 7" Compilation (performs A) Spitting Milk or B) Swallow Or Drown)
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