Music » Makin' the Scene

Disengage Stays Local

Cleveland rockers spurn bigger offers, sign with Mushroomhead label.


Singing for Satan: Abdullah frontman Jeff Shirilla, at - the Scene Music Awards, July 22. - WALTER  NOVAK
  • Walter Novak
  • Singing for Satan: Abdullah frontman Jeff Shirilla, at the Scene Music Awards, July 22.
After months of waiting on major labels and more than a few bad offers, Cleveland rockers Disengage have signed on with Mushroomhead singer J. Mann's Fractured Transmitter Records for the U.S. release of their latest album, Application for an Afterlife.

"We don't really fit into the niches that major labels are looking for," says drummer Jonathan Morgan. "Some people believed in us, but there's always the chance that you'll get buried and nothing will happen. We decided to go small and work our way up, to prove that this type of music -- it's not exactly hard rock or punk rock or hardcore -- can be successful."

The group, which formed in 1995, finished recording the album in November. Mars Studios' Bill Korecky (Mushroomhead, Premonitions of War) co-produced and mixed the LP, which has already generated a loud buzz in Japan, where it's distributed by Daymere, the same label that handles the Cleveland metal band Keelhaul. Set for October release here, the Fractured Transmitter pressing will be distributed through Lumberjack and Navarre, companies that connect major underground labels like Hydra Head, Deathwish, and Bridge Nine with retailers as large as Best Buy.

"This isn't a multi-album deal," says Mann. "Hopefully, they'll do well enough to get where they want to go."

Audio samples and cover art, created by Cleveland artist Derek Hess, are available at

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· Because one mob of rabidly loyal fans isn't enough: Mushroomhead has signed on for an eight-week tour with Insane Clown Posse. Dates are yet to be announced, but the trek will run from mid-October through late November. "The band approached us and made an offer we couldn't refuse," says 'Head frontman J. Mann.

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