Early photos: http://encosion.smugmug.com/Music
Early videos: http://www.vimeo.com/album/29253
1st Album: http://www.last.fm/music/Neshamah/The+Grass+Withers%2C+and+it’s+Flower+Falls
2nd Album: http://www.last.fm/music/Neshamah/Communicating+In+Heartbeats
Neshamah was founded from the ashes of a death metal band called ‘Prayer’ in 1998. De Wet (bass), Tim Ferguson (drums) and Matt Hoyle (vocals) recruited Don Overton on gitar. Don used to play bass in Nailed and Seventh Breed. After a few solid months of preparation, De Wet sadly decided to step down. Dylan Jones took his place on bass. A few months later, after a couple of well received shows and intentions to go into the studio, Dylan Jones decided to step down too. Jen Roomes stepped up to the plate and made a valiant attempt at learning the bass from scratch only 3 months before heading into the studio to record the debut full length.
Shortly after the full length was released, Tim and Don decided to step down. Tim emmigrated to the UK and Don went off to create music on his own.
Matt and Jen then recruited Juan Voges (gitar) and Justin Kruger (drums). Later Josh Grierson and even later, Russel Aitkenhead replaced Juan on gitar. Ryan van Rensburg later joined Matt on vocals after returning from a year in the UK playing drums for a local London hardcore band.
Having been around for more than just a few years, with a massive local, national and international following, Their dynamic blend of rock n roll and metal influenced hardcore, their explosive performances and constant touring, and their dedication to the local scene earned them not only a dedicated fan base, but also extensive media support. Their website www.neshamah.com (now-defunct) used to receive between 60 000 – 80 000 hits per month in 2004. Neshamah have toured internationally with Norma Jean, Stretch Armstrong and The Culprits, and have also played internationally with bands such as: The Hope Conspiracy, The AKA’s, Figure Four, The Deal, Underoath, Seventh Star, No Innocent Victim, xDisciplex AD, Point of Recognition, Nourish the Flame, Every Time I Die, Thursday, This Day Forward, With Honour, Mortification, xLooking Forwardx, Shattered Realm, Zao. They have also toured and played locally with too many great South African bands mention.
2000 saw the release of Neshamah’s first full-length cd “The Grass Withers and it’s Flower Falls”. Self funded and released independantly, it managed to hook up both national and international distribution, and was voted into the top 10 releases of 2001 on Barney Simon’s 5FM national radio show “The Night Zoo” as well as being selected for CD of the month on Belgium’s Goodlife Recordings (August 2001). Songs from the CD also managed to find their way into numerous local and international compilations.
Having played many festivals in South Africa and completing a national tour, Neshamah received an invitation to play at the popular Cornerstone Festival 2001 in Bushnell IL (USA). Neshamah rocked a pre fest show with awesome bands such as No Innocent Victim, Figure Four, and Underoath (to about 950 people) and then opened for Luti-Kriss (now norma jean) to a 5000 strong crowd. This resulted in media attention for the band while in the States, including reviews/interviews in local zines and magazines and radio interviews on American Stations. 2001 also saw Neshamah appearing on various national TV programmes, including playing live to the entire nation on a popular breakfast show and being involved with articles in countless magazines.
From the hard work in 2001 Neshamah sealed a record deal to release an EP on Angryson records an Indy label from Ohio (USA). The EP was released in 2002 to rave reviews in many local, national and international print and web zines. Effective national and international distribution of the EP helped Neshamah further consolidate their hold on the American hardcore underground. Playing loads of local and national festivals again, Neshamah’s following locally, nationally and internationally continued to grow.
2003 was another great year for Neshamah, in February they signed a deal with with hardcore label Blood & Ink Records, a label based in Richmond, Virginia (USA), for a split EP release with label mates Rapture of the Meek (from Kentucky). Neshamah recorded their 6-song contribution to the EP in March that year, and the Ep was released in June, shortly before Neshamah embarked on their second USA tour. Once again exposure was gained through effective distribution and promotion of the release. Neshamah left for the USA. This time round it was a solid month’s worth of touring – including 14 different states. They kicked off by playing with fellow Blood & Ink artists The Culprits, along the way playing with Nourish the Flame, Shattered Realm, Figure Four, xlooking forwardx, and featured on the Blood & Ink showcase festival, once again playing cornerstone festival,(this time on the Rock for Life stage) to an awesome crowd, thereafter hitting the road for 3 weeks with Stretch Armstrong and Norma Jean. Captivating stateside audiences with their live performances and powerful music. American Hardcore fans were pleasantly surprised at level of hardcore to emerge from South Africa. In August 2003, Neshamah returned victorious to play 5 explosive shows to local fans on the X-tour.
2004 saw the release of their final full length, “Communicating in Heartbeats” on South African based record label, Witchdoctor Records, and American based label, Blood & Ink Records. At home they toured the country, played fests, recorded the full length in June, featured in numerous zines and magazines, they also won an award in Blunt Magazine (Music/Skate magazine) for ‘Best Heavy Act of 2004’. Towards the end of the year they disbanded.
Edited by encosion on 1 Sep 2008, 15:54
Sources (view history)
Original founding member - Tim Ferguson
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