"Forever... it's even longer than you think, even longer than you dreamed."
I feel that it is only appropriate that this is where we begin. Mind Over Matter did not receive the notoriety of some of their contemporaries, the interest level of the bands that some of the members of this group went on to, or the longevity of bands that formed during the same period such as Silent Majority. What Mind Over Matter did accomplish is creating, in my opinion, the greatest recorded masterpiece from any Long Island Band.
Mind Over Matter was a hardcore band formed around 1992. They started as a 5 piece with George Reynolds on vocals, Artie Sheppard on Guitar, the prolific Eddie Reyes (whose name will pop up on this blog assuredly several more times), Scott Martin on Bass and John LaFatta on Drums. Even at the outset being a slightly metal tinged hardcore band, Reynold's vocal style and intense lyrics gave the music a different feel. It wasn't the standard hardcore growl of the time and the music hinted at the experimentation that was to come later on. Reyes left after their first 7" was released, and they continued on as a 4-Piece for the "Hectic Thinking" 7" as well as the full length "Security". Security gathered the "Hectic Thinking" 7" as well as a few new songs as well like "Parts" and "Correct Me if I'm Wrong" which provided Fugazi-like basslines and intricate guitar parts.
Their final release was the sprawling "Automanipulation", which as I mentioned above is simply untouchable. I can't really describe it, it truly needs to be heard to be appreciated. If you listen to Security and then Automanipulation it almost doesn't sound like the same band. This was a band that was not content with the status quo and needed to keep evolving. They had added Josh DeMarco from Clockwise (edit - credit to George Reynolds for pointing this out) which added a whole new sonic layer to the music, but that wasn't all. They really changed the sound, shifting away from hardcore to a post-hardcore sound closer to Quicksand and Orange 9MM, but with far greater experimentation which incorporated elements from bands like Drive Like Jehu and Slint . Beyond that George Reynolds seem to completely change his vocal delivery. It's completely unique and I don't feel that anyone has replicated it.
They are a band that has been praised as influences, but few if any bands have been able to replicate their sound.
They broke up after Automanipulation and played a reunion show a few years later at Coney Island High, one at Deja 1 in 1999 which I went to, one in 2006 at a tribute show for James McCauliffe, and again in 2008 for a VOD reunion show.
George Reynolds went on to form Dayinthelife with Josh DeMarco, and later Eathling.Massive, Revenge of the Dragon and he is currently a member of Wiretap Crash. Artie had been a member of Bad Trip, then joined Walter Schriefel's post-Quicksand project World's Fastest Car. He then formed Error Type:11 with Scott Martin, and later Instruction, Gay for Johnny Depp and God Fires Man. DeMarco started the aforementioned Dayinthelife and later Sound of Speed. John Lafatta joined Madball and later Deathcycle.
In addition to the albums below, I've also included a live set (which I'm not sure where I nabbed it from) from an WNYU radio station broadcast that has a batch of unreleased songs as well as their cover of "New York, New York" from the Wreck-Age "Mindset Overhaul" compilation.
Enough talk, here's the music:
First 7", Hectic Thinking, Live Set and New York, New York: