Loud and proud, BoneHawk brought their behemoth modern-day mix of heavy rock, 90s stoner, and 70s groove to Ty Fest 2015.

Calling Portage, Michigan home, BoneHawk consists of Chad Houts (Guitars), Matt Helt (Guitars/Lead Vocals), Jay Rylander (Drums) and Taylor Wallace (Bass). This line-up has been together for just over a year, and during that time they have solidified themselves as a vital part of the Midwest Michigan groove/stoner oriented hard rock scene, which also includes the likes of Blue Snaggletooth, Bison Machine, Wizard Union, Chugger and Mehrunes Dagon.

Although one might think of BoneHawk as a stoner/desert rock band, there is much more to their sound. Playing heavy and dirty guitar sounds to blues to metal to 70s hard rock, the band prefers to regard themselves more as a heavy rock or riff rock band. Chad Houts jokingly mentions the problem with calling them a stoner/desert rock band is that “they are not big stoners, nor do they live near a desert.”

Funded through KickStarter, the band released their debut album, Albino Rhino, on vinyl earlier this year. They have sold out of the first pressing on white vinyl and are near sold out of the second pressing on purple vinyl. Demand from the fans will have the band release a third pressing.

The band sat down with Erik Heemsoth from National Rock Review where they discussed many things, such as the vibe of Ty Fest, the formation of BoneHawk, their influences, the style of music that they play, the Albino Rhino album, recording with Jim Diamond at Ghetto Recorders, the upcoming Ripple Music split album release with Kingnomad, the future as well as touring, and many other things.


Newcomers to Ty Fest, the band “wowed” the crowd blasting riff after riff in such a well-executed way that the crowd of 500+ grooved to every minute of it. Whether an up-tempo rocker or a slow jam, BoneHawk hooked the audience from the very first note where many cheered and screamed along through their entire set. The band played many songs off of their Albino Rhino album plus a couple of new tracks which are set to be released on the upcoming Kingnomad split through Ripple Music.

Photographs of BoneHawk at Ty Fest 2015 taken by Thom Seling and Robert Somerville.

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About The Author

Erik's interest in music began at an early age. In high school, he was the co-host of the underground metal show the Social Mutilation Hour, on 89.5 WAHS, under the name of Neurotik Erik. During this period of his life, he independently promoted shows under the name of Ding Dong Ditch Productions. Erik would rent out local VFW Halls, use space at Oakland Community College Auburn Hills Campus, or simply throw basement parties around the Detroit area. While at college at Ferris State University, he became head of the student run organization, Entertainment Unlimited, and continued to promote shows, but on a larger scale. He also helped start an underground magazine, 'Outpunk', where he interviewed bands and wrote music reviews. Additionally, Erik joined the staff at the Ferris State University Torch and wrote on a larger scale.

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