SCELESTUS (pronounced sha-less-tus), the new project featuring former MUSHROOMHEAD frontman Jason Popson (a.k.a. J Mann), current MUSHROOMHEAD drummer Steve “Skinny” Felton, and ex-THE AUTUMN OFFERING guitarist Tommy Church, has just released its self-titled EP via Filthy Hands/Megaforce. A full-length album will follow in the fall.
“Scelestus” track listing:
01. Everything We Hold
02. Backdraft Recall
03. Damn The Deceiver
The song “Token” can be streamed using the SoundCloud player below.
The story of SCELESTUS can be traced back to the ’90s when an encounter in a rundown rehearsal facility resulted in J Mann joining MUSHROOMHEAD. J Mann and Skinny subsequently collaborated on such other projects as (216), 10,000 CADILLACS, and CROSSFADER, as well as the independent record label SMDC.
“I had found a musical soulmate,” says J Mann. “We were family. Over the course of a decade, we literally achieved our dreams and goals, and we did it together.”
Although J Mann amicably left MUSHROOMHEAD in 2004, gossip had led to confusion and misunderstanding between Felton and the singer. “Tragically, it took the loss of MUSHROOMHEAD‘s founding guitar player John ‘J.J. Righteous’ Sekula in October of 2010 for us to not only face each other but face ourselves as well,” J Mann admits. “We hugged, we cried, we laughed and we gave a fitting send-off to a fallen comrade in front of 2,200 people at the Agora Theatre. We also vowed to work together again. Immediately.”
A few months later, in February of 2011, J Mann and Skinny followed up on that vow. “[Skinny] called and said he had a free week, and this badass guitar named Tommy Church from North Carolina was in town, did I wanna jam?” says J Mann. “We decided to do it like back in the day; for fun, no egos, no over-analyzing, throw-and-go and get-it-out.” And in four days, the trio did just that, producing a solid four tracks that now stand as the debut self-titled release from SCELESTUS.
“I stand by it because it came from the heart,” J Mann states. “It’s honest, and that seems to have become a rare commodity.”