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MISC

ABOUT

I was born in 1976. I grew up in suburban Merrimack Valley, and spent many weekends in Charlestown and East Boston. 

At 17, I graduated High School and chose to work full-time until heading to college. Soon after I relocated to metro Boston and attended college at the Art Institute of Boston where I earned my Bachelors in Fine Arts in 1998. I also won the "Excellence In Design" accolade from the school. For a brief time, I instructed at the college as part of their "Continuing Education" program. After working a variety of freelance design positions, I became a freelance artist/designer, primarily working in the Independent music community. 

In 2000 I founded the Deathwish record label and distribution company. Today I spend my time working for that business, while also making art/design work, and creating music with a variety of projects.

LABEL

Deathwish Inc. (2000-Present)
In 2000 I co-founded Deathwish with Tre McCarthy. Started as an aggressive record label, Deathwish has released hundreds of releases. In 2007, Deathwish acquired the hardcore/punk label, Malfunction Records founded by longtime friends Linas Garsys and Tru Pray. In early 2008, we acquired the Perfect Victim record label and now manage their existing catalog of music.

In 2012, Deathwish branched out into the distribution world with the creation of DW Direct. This distribution arm places thousands of titles from hundreds of labels into independent stores all over the world.

deathwishinc.com
deathwishdirect.com

MUSIC

Converge (1991-Present) 
In 1990 I started Converge with co-founder Kurt Ballou, along with other high school friends. I was around 14 years old at the time. We started out like many bands, covering our favorite artists. After a year or so of writing songs and recording demos, the band slowly progressed into something more substantial. We played our first shows in the middle of 1991. We started writing and playing what we today consider "relevant" music in 1994. At that time we started incorporating deeper influences like Starkweather, The Accused, Rorschach, and Born Against into our approach. Since then our band has evolved considerably. To date, we have released music on labels Epitaph, Deathwish, Equal Vision, Hydra Head, Relapse, Ferret, and more.

In the of Fall 2001 we settled on a definitive lineup:
Jacob Bannon - Vocals, lyrics, visuals
Kurt Ballou - Guitar, backing vocals
Nate Newton - Bass, backing vocals
Ben Koller - Drums

convergecult.com

Supermachiner (1994-2000)
Supermachiner originally began as a collection of 4 track recordings I recorded in 1994, prior to me moving to Boston. The music was much different than Converge, having more in common with influences Swans, Bauhaus, and others. The crude project remained dormant for a number of years. With the help and inspiration of Ryan Parker (Daltonic, Black Spot, The Jaded Salingers), we brought the project back to life in the winter of 1998. Together we developed our collective song ideas into the "Rise Of The Great Machine" album. I structured the lyrical content around my feelings on the rise of technology and the death of the individual, making the project thematic in its content. We named the project "Supermachiner", a play on the term "Supermachinder" the compound word for Japanese Giant Robot Toys from the 1970s.

We entered the studio with Kurt Ballou (Converge) in the winter of 1999. During the sessions, Kurt contributed a great deal to the album material. "Rise Of The Great Machine" was released in 2000. After the album was released future projects were planned but never materialized. A collection of all existing recordings and demos we recorded was released on as a 2XCD titled "Rust". The original "Rise Of The Great Machine" was also released on vinyl by the E-Vinyl label in France (limited to 1000 copies) in 2008.

Jacob Bannon - Vocals, Bass, Piano, and Electronics

Mike McKenzie - Guitars, Vocals, Piano, and Electronics
Sean Martin - Guitars and Electronics
Adam McGrath - Guitars and Vocals
Christopher Maggio - Drums

wearyourwounds.net

Umbra Vitae (2019-Present)
Umbra Vitae was conceived during Wear Your Wounds rehearsals. With all members having roots in heavy music, the band would often warm up playing aggressive riffs. Jacob Bannon (Converge, WYW, Blood From the Soul), Mike Mckenzie (The Red Chord, WYW, Stomach Earth), and Sean Martin (WYW, Twitching Tongues, ex-Hatebreed) soon recruited Greg Weeks (The Red Chord, Labor Hex, etc), and Jon Rice (Uncle Acid, Job For a Cowboy, etc) for the rhythm section and a new band was born. 

The name Umbra Vitae (pronounced uhm'-bruh vee'-tie) is an homage to Georg Heym's poem of the same name, originally published in 1912. 

umbravitae.com

Guest Appearances
I have been fortunate to guest on a variety of recordings from bands like MSTRKRFT, Nails, 108, Cave In, American Nightmare/Give Up The Ghost, Some Girls, Ramallah, and more.

ART

When I was young, I discovered some paintings my father had painted. The day I found those is likely when my imagination started to race on its own. When I was 11-12 became obsessed with the vibrant artwork of the skateboard, bmx, and metal music cultures. I've been hooked ever since. I started painting and drawing in a serious manner since I was 13 or so. I did this until I enrolled in college in 1994. In school I abandoned the "Fine Art" exclusive approach, and enrolled in the Design Program to broaden my horizons. I don't consider myself a traditional musician/artist/writer. I see those definitions as a bit limiting. "Life" artist makes the most sense to me, as I see all of my creative outlets to be linked together, coming from the same place internally.

Art/Gallery Appearances
2020: Austin, TX | Mondo Gallery | "House Party" Group Show (cancelled)
2019: Chicago, IL | Public Works Gallery | "You Will Die" Group Show
2019: Chicago, IL | J. Bannon x Thomas Hooper at House of Vans 
2019: Tilburg, The Netherlands | "Full Bleed" Group Show & Live Art workshop
2018: Tilburg, 
The Netherlands | "Full Bleed" Group Show c & Live Art workshop
2017: Austin, TX | Volcom Studio | "A State of Matter" Group Show curated by Thomas Hooper 
2017: Beverly, MA | Mingo Gallery | "Dunedevil" Solo Show
2017: Tilburg, The Netherlands | "Full Bleed" Group Show curated by BRLSQ
2016: Montreal, QC | Neon St. Hubert | Solo Art Demo presented by Element
2016: Austin, TX | Mondo Gallery | "House Party" Group Show
2016: Chicago, IL | Revolution Brewing Co. | "Art Gives Me Hope" Pop Up Show
2015: Los Angeles, CA | The Seventh Letter | "The Printed Works of BRLSQ" Group Show
2015: Austin, TX | Mondo Gallery | "Originals: No Pop Art Allowed" Group Show
2015: Tyler, TX | Preacher Gallery | "50/50.3 Project Loop Benefit" Group Show
2015: Austin, TX | Fun Fun Fun Fest | "50/50.3 Project Loop" Preview Exhibition
2015: Minneapolis, MN | Co-Exhibitions | "Fragments" Solo Show
2014: Beverly, MA | Mingo Gallery | "Abstracts & Dimensions" Solo Show
2014: Boston, MA | Distillery Gallery | "Skies, Water, & Death" Group Show
2013: Austin, TX | Mondo Gallery | "EC Comics" Group Show
2013: Boston, MA | Fourth Wall Project Gallery | "Street Diamonds 2" Group Show
2012: Austin, TX | Mondo Gallery | "Universal Monsters" Group Show
2012: Salt Lake City, UT | Fice Gallery | "Day of the Dead" Group Show
2012: Cleveland, OH | Loren Naji Gallery | "Life & Death..." Group Show
2011: Beverly, MA | Ursa Major Gallery | Solo Show
2010: San Francisco, CA | 111 Minna Gallery | "Scream With Me" Group Show
2008: Los Angeles, CA | Tradition Gallery/Store | "Public Domain" Group Show
2004: Cleveland, OH | StrHess Festival | Group Show

FINE ART PRINTS

Originally encouraged by Martin Geramita (longtime manager of Derek Hess), I have been offering Fine Art prints of my work in some form or another since the early 2000s. I collaborate with the highly respected Burlesque of North America on many of my silkscreened projects. I also print many on my own, as well as for other artists.

WRITING

I began writing around the same time I became interested in visual art. For the most part my public writing is in the form of lyrical content on the albums I've been a part of. I have a great deal of prose written that has never been published.

In 2013 I wrote review based pieces for thetalkhouse.com, a music website founded by Michael Azerrad (The New Yorker, Mojo, The New York Times, etc).

In 2017 I released my first book, "Dunedevil: An Artistic Journey Into Abstraction & Isolation". Primarily an art book, it features 300 pages of abstract artwork and diary entries from a week long excursion in C-Scape dune shack in Provincetown, MA. It is in its second edition and is also available in Digital format via Amazon Kindle.

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