Steve Von Till
Birth nameStephen Francis Von Till, Jr.
GenresPost-metal, sludge metal, experimental, folk, psychedelic, drone, gothic country
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, musician
InstrumentsVocals, guitar
Years active1989–present
LabelsNeurot Records
Associated actsNeurosis, Tribes of Neurot, Culper Ring, Harvestman
Websitehttp://www.vontill.org

Stephen Francis Von Till Jr. is an American musician, poet, and educator, best known as the guitarist of the band Neurosis, in which he also shares lead vocals with Scott Kelly. He also records solo work under both his given name and the moniker Harvestman.

Career

Von Till joined Neurosis in 1989.[1] and the group would later form experimental/noise group Tribes of Neurot, Neurosis' alter ego.[2]

Solo

Von Till's solo music as a singer songwriter has been described as a hybrid of "haunting"[3] folk songs,[4] rural psychedelia and expansive gothic Americana full of melancholic beauty. These songs are often built around sparse arrangements, the centerpiece of which is his distinctive solemn weathered voice and minimal acoustic guitar stylings.

In many ways a catch all for his other musical interests and influences, distilling his love for home recorded psychedelia,[5] ambient, folk, lo-fi, krautrock, fuzz guitars, analog delays, and vintage synthesizers into a cohesive meditative body of work.  Borrowing the concept from dub music of using the recording studio as an instrument, Von Till often considers the mixes themselves as the performance where he is able to break down, manipulate, and rebuild the tracks into new forms.

On May 6, 2020, Von Till announced a collection of poetry and lyrics titled Harvestman.[6]

Equipment

Von Till plays Jazzcaster- and Telecaster-style guitars assembled from Warmoth parts. He employs Lollar P90 (bridge) and Bartolini strat style (neck) pickups. His main distortion pedals are Keeley modded ProCo Rat pedals, a vintage MXR Distortion +, Land of the Rising Fuzz shin ei clone, and a Fulltone OCD.

Using a wide variety of delay and modulation effects, his pedalboards have been known to include the Mutron Phasor II, MXR Carbon Copy delay, Dry Bell Vibe Machine uni-vibe clone, Electro-Harmonix Bass Micro Synthesizer, and a Chicago Iron Parachute Wah. His signal routing is all controlled by a custom made switching system by Bob Bradshaw of Custom Audio Electronics. The signal is routed to a Mesa/Boogie Mark IV with 2 2x12 Ear Candy cabs and a Garnet Session Man 2x12 combo (commonly replaced with a Fender ’65 Twin Reverb Reissue combo when renting gear).

Von Till's main acoustic guitar is a 1965 Gibson J-50 when playing solo as Harvestman.

Personal life

Outside his role as a musician, Von Till works as an elementary school teacher in North Idaho.[7] He is Jewish.[8]

Discography

With Neurosis

With Tribes of Neurot

  • Rebegin (1995)
  • Silver Blood Transmission (1995)
  • Static Migration (1998)
  • Grace (1999)
  • 60° (2000)
  • Adaptation and Survival: the Insect Project (2002)
  • Meridian (2005)

Solo albums

As Harvestman

  • Lashing the Rye (2005)
  • In a Dark Tongue (2009)
  • Trinity Score to the film h2odio, a full-length feature film by Italian director Alex Infascelli.
  • Music for Megaliths (2017)

References

  1. ^ Bolter, Jack (April 22, 2014). "Neurosis rip it up and start again". Crack Magazine. Retrieved January 16, 2021.
  2. ^ Solis, Matt (August 18, 2016). "Grace Period: Neurosis Talk Times of Grace's Companion Album". Decibel. Retrieved January 16, 2021.
  3. ^ Sottile, Leah (March 12, 2015). ""What Are We to the Stars?": Neurosis' Steve Von Till Gets Deep on the Majestic Splendor of Idaho". Vice. Retrieved February 14, 2020.
  4. ^ "Steve Von Till – A Life Unto Itself (album review ) | Sputnikmusic". www.sputnikmusic.com. Retrieved February 14, 2020.
  5. ^ "Feature: Interviews – Harvestman (Steve Von Till)". Scene Point Blank. Retrieved February 14, 2020.
  6. ^ Welsch, Quinn (October 28, 2020). "North Idaho schoolteacher Steve Von Till brings his dark musings to life with a new solo album and poetry book". Inlander. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  7. ^ Cuevas, Steven (January 20, 2019). "Day Jobs: Fourth grade elementary school teacher". Public Radio International. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  8. ^ PDF (Neurosis interview in Lime Lizard magazine) http://clok.uclan.ac.uk › ... PDF by R Frost · 1993 — of us in the band have German and Jewish blood in our families, and where. Right. Well. ... Half the songs, explains guitarist Steve Von Till(who jumps on.

External links