Watch: CANNIBAL CORPSE And DEICIDE Side Project UMBILICUS Plays First Live Show
February 25, 2023
UMBILICUS, the new project featuring drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz (CANNIBAL CORPSE),guitarist Taylor Nordberg (DEICIDE, INHUMAN CONDITION),bassist Vernon Blake (ANARCHUS) and vocalist Brian Stephenson (FORE, OLD JAMES),played its first concert this past Thursday (February 23) at Will's Pub in Orlando, Florida as the support act for KING BUFFALO. Fan-filmed video of the show can be seen below.
UMBILICUS's debut album, "Path Of 1000 Suns", was released last September via Listenable Insanity Records. The LP's 10 original songs showcase the band's love for all things 1970s hard rock, covering a range of influences from GRAND FUNK RAILROAD to LUCIFER'S FRIEND to LED ZEPPELIN.
"Path Of 1000 Suns" was recorded, mixed and mastered by Nordberg at Smoke & Mirrors Productions in Spring Hill, Florida and is available on CD, vinyl, tape, as well as box set versions at the group's Bandcamp page.
Regarding how UMBILICUS came together, Mazurkiewicz told Extreminal in a 2021 interview: "20 years ago when [Jack Owen] was still in [CANNIBAL CORPSE], literally 20 years ago, he and I started a side project and we wrote some original songs and we played two shows here in Tampa in a small bar. The name of the band was PATH OF MAN. And we wrote about 15 songs, we made a couple of demo tapes. But we didn't really do anything with it. We played two shows and then the band fell apart. It was three of us. We had a singer, another friend of ours, a friend of mine, Vernon Blake. That was 20 years ago. It lasted a year maybe. [It was] a lot of fun and [then it] fell apart. Right around May or June [of 2020], I said, 'You know what? Now is the time to [do it] if I wanna do this again. Now is the time to do it because CANNIBAL CORPSE is finished recording the new record.' I had some time on my hands. So I called my friend Vern who played bass on that project and I said, 'Hey, you wanna start a project back up again? Let's do this.'"
As for the musical direction of UMBILICUS, Paul said: "[It is] a total kind of hard rock project. More of a rock and roll, hard rock kind of stuff. Stuff that I was grew up with — the late '60s, early '70s kinda stuff."
On the topic of how he found the other musicians for UMBILICUS, Paul said: "Jack wasn't gonna get involved in this. He doesn't live in Florida anymore, so we had to start fresh. We're, like, 'Let's start fresh,' Vern and I. 'Let's find a guitar player.' And we found a guitar player. He's the guitar player that plays in THE ABSENCE right now and INHUMAN CONDITION. They just released a CD, a smaller band, but his name is Taylor Nordberg. He is playing the guitar with us right now. We're trying to make this project go a little farther than we did the last one."
Last year, Paul described UMBILICUS to Metal Plague as "a rock 'n' roll project, a hard rock project." He added: "I'm passionate about rock 'n' roll music and hard rock and music from the '70s and all that. That is what this is… It's pure rock 'n' roll. If people hear this and they're gonna be expecting it to be anything like CANNIBAL CORPSE, it's nothing like it. It's pure rock 'n' roll with great vocals, great songs, great riffing, and we are very proud of it."
When UMBILICUS's formation was first announced in December 2021, Mazurkiewicz said in a statement: "UMBILICUS was formed in the summer of 2020 and driven by our love of rock and roll from the late '60s, '70s and early '80s.
"I've been listening to well-known bands like GRAND FUNK [RAILROAD], BAD COMPANY and STEPPENWOLF and not-so-well-known bands like SIR LORD BALTIMORE and LUCIFER'S FRIEND for the last 20 years or so now. The more I listened to these bands, the more I wanted to play music like this. It is just so much fun to sit back and groove out and play by complete feel without beating my body down. To just play some pure hard rock!
"We composed 10 very cool songs throughout 2020 but the one piece of the puzzle was missing: an awesome voice to tie it all together. Enter Brian Stephenson! An amazing vocalist and lyricist that completed the lineup!
"I am so proud of what we have written and I can't wait for the world to hear what we have to offer!"
Brian Stephenson - vocals Paul Mazurkiewicz - drums Vernon Blake - bass Taylor Nordberg - guitar
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