Brian Cook - Bass - 2009 - Present

Brian Cook is the bassist, baritone guitarist, and keyboardist for Russian Circles. He also played in the bands Botch, These Arms Are Snakes, and Roy. He has served as a session player for records by Mouth of the Architect and Mamiffer and is currently an auxiliary contributor to Sumac. In addition to playing music, Cook is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in The Stranger, Noisey, Portland Mercury, and Alarm. He self-published his debut novel, The Second Chair Is Meant For You, in 2014. He was voted Best Dancer in his 6th grade yearbook, which, if you've ever seen him dance, was obviously a joke by his classmates. Cook currently lives in New York with his husband Reno. 

Brian Cook's Gear Thanks go to:
Verellen Amplifiers
Ernie Ball Strings

Brian Cook Rig Rundown

Hey Brian. I've been meaning to message for years regarding your novel. I bought it in Cambridge at a show you headlined in the winter of 2014 at Middle East Downstairs. Sadly not from you. I loved it. 

Aw damn, thanks so much for the kind words regarding The Second Chair Is Meant For You. That book was my trial-by-fire for the process of writing novels, so I’m a little self-conscious of it and extremely flattered whenever someone tells me they enjoyed it in any capacity. I have another book in the works that I’m hoping to have out in 2018. Fingers crossed. 

Every Record I Own - Day 32: Assück Misery IndexIn the mid-’90s,... 

Every Record I Own - Day 32: Assück Misery Index

In the mid-’90s, hardcore ruled my life. I listened to other music as well, but nothing excited me as much as a good, gnarly heavy record. Towards the end of the decade, my enthusiasm began to wane a little bit. I got burned out, which I guess is what happens to most hardcore kids when they grow older. 

Being a musician probably didn’t help the situation. Music needs an element of mystery in order to hold our attention, and as a musician you quickly learn to…

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Every Record I Own - Day 31: Assfactor 4 s/tFor as much as... 

Every Record I Own - Day 31: Assfactor 4 s/t

For as much as hardcore ruled my life in the mid-’90s, I don’t really own that many hardcore LPs from that era. Now, when it comes to hardcore 7″s, it’s a very different story. And I think that’s mainly because hardcore bands had a knack for putting out incredible 7″s and slightly less engaging full-lengths. For example, South Carolina blazers Assfactor 4 put out the flawless Smoked Out EP–a tightly wound parcel of manic energy–and followed it up with a solid but…

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Serious question: how do you nurse a bangover? You are intense on stage. I want to replace my neck right now. 

For folks who might not be familiar with the slang, a bangover is a sore neck from headbanging, and it can really suck. In college, the sore neck would often turn into a sore throat, which would turn into flu-like symptoms. It can last a few days or as long as a week. When we plan Russian Circles tours, we try to schedule the third day of tour off as that seems to be when everyone has the worst bangover. 

Protect yo’ neck! Once a bangover sets in, you’re fucked. You just have to ride out days of wincing…

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