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Mark Greening
Mark Greening
Background information
Birth Name Mark Anthony Greening
Born 12 April 1977
Occupation Musician, Actor
Genres Doom Metal, Stoner Metal, Sludge Metal, Black Metal, Occult Rock
Instrument(s) Drums, Guitar, Vocals
Years active 1993 - Present
Labels Rise Above Records, The Music Cartel, Man's Ruin Records, Southern Lord Records, Heavy Psych Sounds, Bad Acid, JVC Victor, This Dark Reign, Invada, Feto, Ritual Productions, Spinefarm
Associated acts Electric Wizard, Ramesses, 11 Paranoias, With The Dead, Dead Witches, Mercury Sound

Mark Greening is a musician and actor best known as being a founding member of Electric Wizard and Ramesses, the former a genre-defining doom metal band and the latter a notable UK blackened doom act. Greening is known for his frequent floor tom usage and hammering rhythms, often credited as performing "Drums and Concussions". Since the start of his career at age 16 in 1993 he has performed on a dozen studio albums, including five with Electric Wizard and three with Ramesses.

BiographyEdit

Electric Wizard (1993 - 2002, 2012 - 2014)Edit

  • For more details feel free to view the Riffipedia page on Electric Wizard.

Electric Wizard began in Wimborne in Dorset, England during 1993, and was composed of guitarist Jus Oborn, bassist Tim Bagshaw, and Greening, who was only 16 at the time. The band would perform around pubs in England with a couple demos recorded in 1994. Lee Dorrian of Rise Above Records was already interested in signing Thy Grief Eternal and Eternal before their dissolutions and thus signed the band in 1994, with their self-titled debut being released in 1995. The band's sound resembled traditional doom metal and had positive reviews at the time.

In January 1997 the band released their second album in Come My Fanatics.... This record departed greatly from the first, evoking elements of doom, sludge and black metal. Come My Fanatics would serve as the beginnings of the sound the band was known for along with gaining a growing fanbase in the process. Tours would be attempted but canceled.

During the three years following the release of Come My Fanatics..., the members of Electric Wizard encountered a series of setbacks with their live shows becoming more sporadic. There were legal issues which included Oborn's arrest for possession of cannabis, Greening's arrest for assaulting a police officer[1], and Bagshaw's serving of his sentence for robbery. Health problems also plagued the band, with Oborn suffering a collapsed eardrum during a concert and later severing a fingertip in a domestic accident. Greening also broke his collarbone in a motorcycle accident. Despite these setbacks, Electric Wizard released the Supercoven EP on Bad Acid Records in 1998. The band's third album Dopethrone would follow in 2000 and be cited by some as the band's magnum opus, gaining a huge amount of critical praise. The band would attempt to tour Europe in support of the album in 2000 but the majority of the dates would be canceled. 2001 would bring an even more drastic change to the band as they would tour the United States for the first time in one of their first full tours, citing Greg Anderson (Sunn O))), Goatsnake, Southern Lord Records) as one of the key people helping them in that process. Two tours in that country happened that year, Apocalypse Now in the Spring and Metal Maniacs Christmas Ball in December.

The band's next album, Let Us Prey, was released in 2002. It was Electric Wizard's most experimental record to date, evoking elements of psychedelic, jazz and death metal. Following the release and an intended tour with Warhorse that fell through[2], the band embarked on a North American tour with Sons of Otis and Unearthly Trance that raised tensions between band members (including fist fights between Greening and Oborn), with their show on 27 June 2002 at the Khyber billed as their last show ever.[3] Mark Greening would quit the band with Justin Greaves joining the group for a November tour with Cathedral.[4]

At the end of 2012 it would be revealed that Greening would rejoin the band and start rehearsing new material with them, stating "The whole feud had gone on so fuckin’ long that we forgot what it was. As soon as we jammed it was over." With Greening back in the fold as a live drummer as well, the band's first known performances with him back in the band was the 2013 edition of Roadburn Festival, headlined by Electric Wizard. Oborn also curated the festival as the "Electric Acid Orgy". More festival appearances followed throughout 2013 with a new album slated for release at the time though complications between the band and label Rise Above Records would delay it's release.

Electric Wizard's eighth Time to Die would be released in 2014 on their own label Witchfinder Records with distribution from Spinefarm Records. It was recorded at Toerag Studios and Skyhammer Studios with involvement from Chris Fielding, Liam Watson and James Plotkin. Time to Die again gained the band a great deal of critical praise though also polarized some listeners.

On 11 June 2014, Mark Greening was out of the band a second time with Simon Poole rejoining. The band's reason for Greening's dismissal cited a poor performance at Temples Festival. Initially announcing a peaceful statement[5], eventually Greening would dispute over his departure and even forming a "No Greening No Wizard" page[6]. Ultimately, Greening would form With The Dead with Lee Dorrian and Tim Bagshaw as sort of a response to the dismissal (Though he would be out of that band by 2015.). Greening would also eventually rejoin Ramesses and form a new band in Dead Witches. Time To Die would also be pulled from outlets per a financial dispute between Greening and the band.[7] Simon Poole would return to the band to take Greening's place and in total performed six shows with the band on his second run.

Ramesses (2003 - 2013, 2016)Edit

  • For more details feel free to view the Riffipedia page on Ramesses.

Ramesses formed roughly in the summer of 2003 after the original rhythm section of Electric Wizard (Mark Greening and Tim Bagshaw) had quit the band, Greening citing a falling out with Oborn and Bagshaw being sick of playing bass. Bagshaw and Greening started jamming together with the former now on guitar, composing a handful of songs composed in the intents of starting a new band. Originally with the intent of Leo Smee (Cathedral, Chrome Hoof) as the bassist before Adam Richardson filled out the lineup on bass and vocals.[8] Eventually in 2003 a handful of recorded songs saw release in a 2003 Promo and split with Negative Reaction. Ramesses would also go on to play their first live show on 21 December 2003 at the Angel in Nottingham.

With more frequent gigs and the band's first tours in their wake would come two EP releases of the band's first recordings: We Will Lead You To Glorious Times and The Tomb, both released in 2005. The band toured further in support with their first dates outside of the UK venturing into Europe. Leading into recording of the band's debut album they would play various shows in the UK area with a host of different bands along with tours alongside Unearthly Trance and Sourvein. On 30 April 2007 the band would release their first studio album in the form of Misanthropic Alchemy. The band would follow with a tour of the Uk the next year leading into an appearance at Roadburn Festival, along with Damnation Festival and Hokaben Festival.

Going into 2009 the band would start work on new material and release a split with Unearthly Trance. 2010 would see the release of their second album Take The Curse, released on Ritual Productions with touring in support of the record. Touring in 2011 would be more sporadic as the band released two studio recordings on Ritual Productions: Their third album Possessed By The Rise of Magik and Chrome Pineal, the latter featuring Take The Curse outtakes and live recordings.

Sometime in 2012 Tim Bagshaw would move to the United States and ultimately depart from the band. For the band's touring cycles in 2012 Mike Vest (Bong, 11Paranoias) would take over as the band's guitarist. Ramesses were intended to play at DesertFest London in 2013 but on 29 January 2013 it was announced the band had broken up, or "went into hibernation" in their terms. The reasoning behind this was Mark Greening had gotten involved in a new project unannounced at the time and left the band (Along with 11 Paranoias). It turned out the band in question that Greening had involvement with was a return to Electric Wizard (From 2012 - 2014).

On 8 February 2016 the band announced "Hibernation over!!!" and announced an appearance at Temples Festival along with Windhand, signaling a return of the band.[9] With new guitarist Alex Hamilton of Bossk the band's first show as a reformed act was on 13 May at The Boston Music Room with Serpent Venom and Iron Witch.[10] The band would follow up from this date with a headlining appearance at Doomed Gatherings, Temples Festival (Though this date would be re-scheduled after the festival canceled outright), HellFest and Incubate Festival. However no shows have followed with Ramesses since, with Richardson concentrating on 11 Paranoias and Greening concentrating on Dead Witches.

Dead Witches (2016 - Present)Edit

  • For more details feel free to view the Riffipedia page on Dead Witches.

Roughly six months after his departure from With The Dead, Mark Greening would form Dead Witches with Greg Elk, Carl Geary and Italian vocalist Virginia Monti (Psychedelic Witchcraft).[11] In late September 2016 going into October 2016 the band would begin recording their debut album at Chuckalumba Studios (The same site where Dopethrone and Let Us Prey by Electric Wizard were recorded). On 16 October 2016 it would be announced Dead Witches would be signed to Italian label Heavy Psych Sounds. However tragedy would befall the group with Greg Elk (Real name Greg Pearson) passing away on 28 October 2016.

Ouija would see release on 10 February 2017, with the band's first show taking place that March with new guitarist Oliver Hill.[12] This lineup would perform twice more in 2017 (Copenhagen Psych Fest and SonicBlast Moledo) before Monti would leave to concentrate on Psychedelic Witchcraft. Soozi Chameleone would join the band in November 2017 when her and Greening met via a mutual friend.[13]

The band would perform sporadic shows in 2018 while recording again at Chuckalumba Studios, leading up to the release of The Final Exorcism on 22 February 2019. The band would perform several marquee events such as Desertfest London, Doom For The Doomed and HRH Doom Vs. Stoner. Greening would become the sole original member in 2020 when he would announce a new lineup just a month before a string of shows for Heavy Psych Sounds Fest.[14]

Other Bands and EndeavorsEdit

Greening would be briefly involved with a psychedelic rock/ambient project known as Mercury Sound alongside Jason Smith and Keith Musselwhite. Greening would upload a handful of demos on his channel where he contributed drums.

Greening would form 11 Paranoias with Adam Richardson and Mike Vest (Bong) in 2011 as a new project when Ramesses was beginning to go dormant. At the time of forming all three members were performing with Ramesses as this new sludge project took shape. Greening would record an EP (2013's Superunnatural) and an album (2014's Spectralbeastiaries) in 2012 but would leave the group late in that year to re-join Electric Wizard. Nathan Perrier (Capricorns, Possessor, Satan's Wrath) would take his place.

Following Greening's second departure from Electric Wizard he would re-connect with Tim Bagshaw about forming a new project. Originally going to be the singer, Greening would get in contact with Lee Dorrian (Cathedral) to form With The Dead on 31 October 2014.[15] Bagshaw would handle bass and guitar duties, Greening took to the drums once again and Lee would provide vocals and lyrics. With The Dead's self-titled debut would see release on 15 October 2015, right under a year after the band had formed. The eponymous With The Dead would attain positive reception at the time of it's release.

However on 23 January 2016 Greening would announce he was no longer performing for With The Dead in a statement on Facebook.[16] The band would make an official statement of his departure due to "political and personal reasons".[17] Greening would form Dead Witches some months after his departure from the band.

Along with his tenures in various bands Greening also has acted in a couple horror films. His first endeavor would be 2013's Welcome To Cannibal County where he portrays the killer of the film in "The Maniac".[18] He would also participate in a film entitled Acid Eater where he played the titular "Acid Eater", a psychedelic cannibal. Work would begin on this film in 2016, including an Indiegogo fundraiser.[19][20] However the status of the film is currently unknown.

Greening is an avid fan of horror films, including vintage horror, hammer horror and the SAW series.[21] Along with this he is an avid fan of occult culture, even having a ouija board tattooed on his back.[22]

BandsEdit

Selected DiscographyEdit

With Electric WizardEdit

With RamessesEdit

Other BandsEdit

External LinksEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Bad Acid interview via Wayback MachineAccessed 5 January 2017
  2. Blabbermouth
  3. Blabbermouth
  4. Blabbermouth
  5. PsychorizonAccessed 5 January 2017
  6. Outlaws of the SunAccessed 5 January 2017
  7. MetalsucksAccessed 5 January 2017
  8. Born Too LateAccessed 8 May 2017
  9. Ramesses FacebookAccessed 9 May 2017
  10. FacebookAccessed 9 May 2017
  11. Dead Witches Facebook
  12. Dead Witches Facebook
  13. Distorted Sound Magazine
  14. Dead Witches Facebook
  15. Outlaws of The Sun
  16. Shoot Me Again
  17. With The Dead Facebook
  18. IMDB
  19. Indiegogo
  20. Ritual Boredoom
  21. Thrash Hits
  22. CVLT Nation
Template:Electric Wizard

Template:Ramesses

V·T·E With The Dead
Current Members Lee DorrianTim BagshawLeo SmeeDarren Verni
Past Members Mark GreeningAlex Thomas
Studio Albums With The DeadLove from With The Dead
Associated Bands and Artists CathedralElectric WizardRamesses11ParanoiasSerpentine PathDead WitchesUnearthly Trance • Bolt Thrower
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