Chris Adler and Jason Bittner, Live at Modern Drummer Festival 2005 features the full length performances of these two incredible drummers, along with in-depth interviews that include demonstrations, discussions of technique and practice routines, and specific playing examples from their MD Festival performances. Included is almost 30 minutes additional performance and clinic footage not included on the Modern Drummer Festival 2005 DVD!
Bonus Footage includes:
Chris Adler “On The Road”-Chris discusses his drums and cymbals, talks to his drum tech, talks about his daily routine while on tour, about warming up, and what’s it’s like to be on road. Also features live clips of Chris with the Lamb of God.
Jason Bittner in Clinic-features excerpts of Jason in a great clinic from Ibbenbüren, Germany shot with a Handycam. Also, an 18-minute “lesson” that includes Jason’s actual, in-studio performance of “The Light the Blinds” and an explanation and demonstration from Jason of his drum part in that song.
Exclusive interviews with Chris and Jason, backstage at the Modern Drummer Festival ’05, at pad kits, during which they talk about technique, warming up, double bass, practicing and more. And at various points during each interview “intersections” with their on-stage performance can be accessed with the DVD remote.
Total Running Time: 155 Minutes
Roaring out of Richmond, Virginia comes the total metal juggernaut that is Lamb of God. Behind the wheel of this startling musical super-nova is drummer, Chris Adler. With a symmetrical precision, an intriguing musicality and an undeniable assult, Chris assumes his position as the rhythmic overlord of Lamb of God's music. Ear-piercing bells, sizzling splashes and trashy china’s punctuate Chris' flamboyant yet economic time-keeping. Their first album, "New American Gospel" put them on the map. Their second album, "As the Palaces Burn" made believers out of all. Their third and most recent release, "Ashes of the Wake" has brought them to the forefront of heavy metal, making them a true contender for the genre's crown.
Like most drummers of Jason Bittner's stature and expertise, he began by banging on pots and pans as early as the age of 3. He began his formal training at age 8, taking lessons and learning rudiments, and was involved in school programs like jazz band and marching band all throughout high school. Eventually Jason entered the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.
On their latest record, The War Within, Jason and company (Shadows Fall) made strides to ensure their sound would keep its integrity. “We pretty much get together and start writing,” Jason says. "We know we have a certain formula that we pretty much stick to but we pretty much write, and whatever comes out, comes out. We’re pretty much writing for ourselves, you know? Not to sound egotistical or anything about it and not to be like ‘We don’t care what anyone thinks,’ but you know it’s got to definitely satisfy us first. We’ve been fortunate enough to have people actually like our music so far, [so] it works in our favor.”
Joining the band for its third studio record, The Art of Balance, the only obstacles Jason had to overcome seemed pretty simple. “I just had to remember my parts,” Jason says matter-of-factly. “And play good. I’m not here to slag on the past, but I didn’t feel that I had to fill anyone’s shoes; I just had to make them bigger. I mean, I just came in and did what I’ve been doing for years. I come in and contribute without stepping on other people’s toes—my only ‘obstacle’ I had to deal with was driving an hour-and-a-half to practice, and having to deal with leaving a pretty successful day job making good money to basically living like an animal,” he says with a laugh.
He adds, “It was difficult to leave a job that I knew had a future on what was basically a gamble. It took me a good 10 to 16 months to realize that this (playing music) is what I do for a living now and to be confident in the decision I had made, and there is no way I’d change anything I’ve done in the past three years. I have no regrets. I’ve seen things and done things that I never thought I’d be able to do. It was definitely worth every minute.”
Jason is as passionate about his band as he is about offering Shadows Fall fans something of himself—both on stage and off. On a ”special edition” release of The War Within, a DVD is included with music lessons given by guitarists Jonathan Donais and Matthew Bachand, and, of course, Jason Bittner. He goes through an entire song, teaching the intricate parts in detail, and it is both humbling and comforting to note that such thoughtfulness went into the making of the record and all its extras.
That passion can be summed up in Jason’s own words, who says, “Making music to me means enjoying myself and enjoying the people I’m making music [for] and making a piece (of music) that might last in history for some time for our genre of music that kids might look up to in the future. If I can record a drum part that will be talked about for years to come like (Dave) Lombardo did with ‘Angel of Death‘ and Neil Pert did with ‘Tom Sawyer‘ or something like that, then that’s the ultimate compliment.”
The ins and outs of being involved in music are paramount to staying passionate about creating something that can be shared with fans from all walks of life. Though, in the beginning, Shadows Fall began as a grassroots styled, do-it-yourself band, the group is now finally starting to see those returns in very positive ways. Both guitarists, Jonathan and Matthew are regular columnists at Guitar World, sharing their extensive riffs and expertise with a metal-hungry public. Another flattering accomplishment on behalf of Jason is that he was named the “#1 Up and Coming Drummer” in Modern Drummer’s Readers Poll. It’s a point of pride for Jason who counts the vote of confidence from the Readers Poll as one of his greatest achievements.
Jason’s work on The War Within is again another point of well-earned pride. Lauded by fans and critics alike as an all-encompassing metal album, The War Within is equal parts solid grooves, ‘tasteful’ melody (in that heavy context) and stellar musicianship on each and every one of the members of the band. From the thought-provoking lyrics of Brian Fair to the clever and careful intricacies of guitarists Jonathan and Mathew, to the solid, stomach-churning rhythm section comprised of bassist Paul Romanko and Jason, The War Within might be the album that garners Shadows Fall its mainstream success while keeping its street credibility—a feat that has eluded Shadows Fall’s idols who are too numerous to mention.
show full notes
artists Live at Modern Drummer Festival 2005
01. Show Opening
02. Award Presentation
03. Opening Talk
05. Now That You've Got Something to Die For
06. Blood of the Scribe
07. Talk, Continued
08. Works-in-Progress With Ron Jarzombek
09. Jason Bittner Introduction
10. The Light That Blinds
11. Power of I and I
12. Drum Solo
13. Double Bass Technique
14. Heel Up/Heel Down Discussion
15. Single Pedal vs. Double Pedal
16. Inspiration on Demand
17. What Drives the Weak
18. Closing Credits
19. Chris Adler Interview Backstage at MD Festival '05
20. Jason Bittner Interview Backstage at MD Festival '05