less than the least

Emery to release new album

Emery’s new album “…In Shallow Seas We Sail” will be released June 2.

The screamo rock band, which is on Tooth and Nail Records, released a 7-song EP, “While Broken Hearts Prevail,” in October 2008.

This latest EP truly caught me off guard, because in the past I haven’t been a huge fan of the band. The energy of this EP, to me, felt fresh, energetic and creative, and I look forward to their upcoming release.


For Today On Tour this Spring
March 25, 2009, 3:32 am
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For Today is on tour this spring with A Plea for Purging. I got to see them this week at a Kobra Klutch show.

If you have a chance to see this band, take it. You will not be disappointed. This hardcore/metal band always puts on an energetic show that you can’t help but jump around. For Today is a band that is equally good at speaking about their faith as they are playing metal riffs. The band is the true epitome of a Christian hardcore band by the way they take a stand for their beliefs.

Below are some pictures of For Today I took at the show.

For Today has a new album coming out in June. Brandon Leitru, the band’s bass player, said he is excited about being able to play their new songs at shows. He said that he has grown a lot since joining the band because the guys are so encouraging.

A Plea for Purging just released their new album, Depravity, this March.

Both bands are on Facedown Records.

Does it energize your faith?
March 25, 2009, 1:56 am
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I love to hear about the impact of music in people’s lives. In this post, I’ve asked Brendan MacBride, a fellow Christian rock follower, questions about music and how it inspires him.

I would love for anyone who reads this post to comment and answer these same questions. I want to hear what you think.

Why do you think Christian rock music has such a devoted following?

In my opinion, there are so many devoted followers of Christian rock because of the passion you won’t find in any other form of rock or hardcore music.

MacBride hopes he can inspire people with his music, just as music has inspired him.

MacBride hopes to inspire people with his music, just as music has inspired him.

Christian rock, and especially hardcore, seems to be shaping the secular music world. You can look at secular artists in hardcore music and see how they are almost imitating the Christian ones because they are looking for that passion.

Ask any fan (Christian or not) of hardcore music what their favorite bands are and usually their answer will include at least a few Christian hardcore bands.

I have been to a lot of different types of shows, both Christian and secular, and there is a special connection between the crowd, the artist and the faith that they share in the Lord.

What impact has this music had in your life?

I have always loved music and playing music. I was first introduced to Christian hardcore at small local show at a church when I was young. I had heard many Christian mainstream rock artists before, and never had much interest. Right away I had a strong connection with this music.

I started listening to a lot of Christian rock after that, which energized my faith and pushed me to want to get involved with the music scene so that I might inspire others just as the music had inspired me.

I have played in several Christian hardcore and pop bands. Also, I have helped put on shows at churches I’ve attended.

All of this has helped to strengthen my faith, and help me grow closer to the Lord and my church community.

Can you name 5 bands you are listening to a lot lately?

Once Nothing
For Today
Sleeping Giant

What album or albums releases are you most excited about?

There are so many bands’ records I cant wait to hear.

The Devil Wears Prada
The Chariot
August Burns Red
For Today
A Plea For Purging’s new album, “Depravity,” is awesome. It really caught me off guard with how deep the lyrics are.

What upcoming show or shows are you excited about and why?

There are many shows I can’t wait for. This weekend I am working at the IMPACT Conference where Skillet, an older Christian rock band, is playing.

Also, Kobra Klutch is having a lot of good hardcore shows soon, with bands such as Gwen Stacy, Mychildren Mybride and Oh Sleeper.

I am most excited for Cornerstone though because of the great atmosphere and the ability to have this massive festival but still retain the passion found in a small intimate church venue.

Gilgal Clothing. passion, faith, music, wearable art. Part 3of3
March 24, 2009, 9:20 pm
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Gilgal Clothing is the unique designs of Josh Burgin, who was inspired to create the line of T-shirts out of his passion for music and his faith. Each design has its own background story and message.

Gilgal Clothing

Gilgal Clothing

This post is the last of three posts featuring an interview with Burgin. To read the first or second post, please scroll down the page or visit the Gilgal Clothing link in the upper left hand corner, where all three posts will be found.

In this post, Burgin discusses the future of Gilgal Clothing and gives some great advice for aspiring designers.

Burgin in one of his designs.

Burgin in one of his designs.

What has been difficult about starting Gilgal Clothing and keeping it going?

Business. There is a lot of work that goes into keeping a company afloat.

After we did Cornerstone, I realized this was no longer a hobby or just an artistic outlet. It was something that could stand on its own if I wanted it too. Thus, to keep it going I would have to get organized.

I am still at that point. I have slowed down and stepped back to figure out the business side of things, so I can make Gilgal long term. Then when I start producing more shirts, there will be a way to get them out to people. I really look forward to that day!

What advice do you have for other aspiring designers that want to start their own lines?

Stick with it! It’s a lot of fun, but to get it past a hobby takes a lot of work and a lot of learning.

With that being said, don’t be afraid to ask questions of those you look up to. They were at the starting line once too. I was surprised just how willing, even excited, most were to talk shop with me and answer any of my questions.

Everything is a learning experience. Take it all in, even your mistakes!

I heard that you might be releasing new designs soon. Do you know when that might be?

Well, that is partially true. When? I can’t give that away, but I will tell you 2009 is bringing a fresh Gilgal! In fact I will let you in on a little secret. We will be putting out a full website and store, with completely new branding this year, and that of coarse means new shirts!

Sneak peak of the new Gilgal Clothing branding

Sneak peak of the new Gilgal Clothing branding

Gilgal Clothing. passion, faith, music, wearable art. Part 2of3
March 11, 2009, 6:43 pm
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Gilgal Clothing is the creation of Josh Burgin that grew out of his passion for art and design, his faith and the Christian music scene.

This post is the second of three posts featuring an interview with Burgin. To read the first post, please scroll down the page or visit the Gilgal Clothing link in the upper left hand corner, where all three posts will be found.

In this post, Burgin discusses Gilgal and its presence in the Christian music scene.

What bands have you designed T-shirts for, and how did they find out about Gilgal?

Gwen Stacy is probably my favorite band I have worked with. I actually ended up designing and printing a limited Gilgal hearts Gwen Stacy T-shirt.

Gilgal Clothing hearts Gwen Stacy design
Gilgal Clothing hearts Gwen Stacy design

I met them at a hardcore show that I was selling at in Shawnee, Okla., and they liked my stuff. I got to know them over a couple different shows, and approached them about doing a shirt together based off of one of their songs, “I’ll splatter you like Jackson Pollock.”

They were really cool about it, but I definitely learned some do’s and don’t’s about designing for the music industry. Who would of thought fickleness transcends all the way down to merchandise!

Gwen Stacy drummer, T.J. Sego, wearing a Gilgal design
Gwen Stacy drummer, T.J. Sego, wearing a Gilgal design

What other festivals (or larger concerts/shows) have you sold your designs at besides Cornerstone?

We have sold at a lot of local Oklahoma City shows, mainly hardcore, and a few local shows in Annapolis, Md. As for festivals, we’ve sold at MoFest in Bowie, Md., and Rock the Light in Kansas City.

I met a lot of people who loved what we were doing, and I felt selling at shows overall was a big success. I am convinced I will do more festivals, but not until I am ready.

I took last summer off to graduate college, travel and begin to brainstorm the future of Gilgal. I am thinking my goal is to do a lot of festivals the summer of 2010, maybe even do a tour. These kind of things take a lot of planning and are a big investment, so I want to do them right.

What do you enjoy the most about Gilgal?

I think the most enjoyable part is when one of my pieces speaks to someone to the point they want to make it a part of who they are; they want to wear it. They identify with it, and in rare cases, I get to hear their personal story of why that design and theme rings true in their personal life. Those stories and relationships have made this journey completely worth it.

I also get a kick out of seeing someone wearing my shirt who I have never met. It just happened to me yesterday, and I can’t help but smile. I just want to go up to them and either hug them or act like I have never heard of Gilgal and see what they have to say about it.

Gilgal Clothing

Gilgal Clothing

Check back for the final post about Gilgal to read Burgin’s advice for beginner designers and to see a sneak peak of Gilgal’s new branding.

About my Blog’s name
March 11, 2009, 4:59 am
Filed under: About

Just if you were wondering about my blog’s name…

When I was about to create this blog, I was reading in Ephesians 3 about Paul and his desire to preach. This verse caught my attention, and I immediately related it to my blog.

7 I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. 8Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach…”

Paul believed that even though he was “less than the least,” just another ordinary person, no one special, a sinner just like the rest of us, God had given him the gift of speaking and bringing people to Christ.

I am just an ordinary fan of awesome music. I have no musical talents really, but music is a huge part of who I am. As someone who is “less than the least,” I hope that my blog can provide a place for people to enjoy, read, learn and teach me about music. Being “less than the least” doesn’t make you any less in God’s eyes, just provides room to become even more beautiful in His eyes.

I also thought the phrase was catchy.

That’s why my blog is named Less than the Least. Enjoy!

Gilgal Clothing. passion, faith, music, wearable art. Part 1of3
March 11, 2009, 4:13 am
Filed under: Blog | Tags:

Josh Burgin in one of his Gilgal designs.

Josh Burgin in one of his Gilgal designs

Gilgal Clothing is the blood, sweat and tears of Josh Burgin. Gilgal grew out of Burgin’s passion for art and design, his faith and influences from the Christian music scene.

I was able to ask Burgin some questions about Gilgal, and his answers were so awesome that I couldn’t bare to cut them short. I wanted everyone to be able read the entire story of Gilgal, so there will be three posts answering the questions.

This first post explores the beginning of Gilgal.

Could you tell me about Gilgal Clothing, and how it got started?

Well, a T-shirt company being interviewed by a music blog might seem a little strange to those unfamiliar with Gilgal, so I’ll start at the beginning.

For me music was a life saver. As I grew up, I was never really into sports or anything like that. I loved music and art. The Christian music scene gave me a place to identify with people, build relationships and have heroes. People on that stage had a relationship with Jesus that I didn’t see anywhere else.

Going to concerts became a passion, a passion that I attempted to imitate by playing music as well, and I failed miserably.

I ended up spending just as much time watching bands as I did studying their merchandise. It was something I could appreciate, and be a part of.

I always considered myself an artist. It’s all I ever wanted to be, besides the short musician stint and a young veterinarian obsession that every kid goes through.

I began collecting T-shirts from every show I went to. I would purchase unique stickers, buttons and posters. I became obsessed with t-shirts, band merchandise and design.

At one point I owned over 100 different unique T-shirts, that all meant something in their own way.

It was six years ago, in my high school art class that I was first introduced to “silk screening,” the process used to create designs on T-shirts. I was hooked.

I carried that passion to college where I was haphazardly introduced to the world of print design. I changed my major from fine art to graphic design with illustration.

It was during that time I discovered I could design and print all the things I came to love in the music scene. As I began to hone my craft, I found opportunities to design shirts and actually work in the screen printing business, learning the process I loved so much.

Gigal Clothing designs

Gigal Clothing designs

In the spring of 2006, I began contemplating how I could use T-shirts as an art form, and at the same time be a participant in the scene that had shaped my childhood. The people that are a part of the music scene are the ones that really embrace Gilgal. They are familiar with concept of wearing art and making a statement through fashion.

Once I felt this was something I really needed and even could do, the Lord started bringing people along side of me to help. My sister helped me find a name with deep meaning and shape the vision of Gilgal. (Check out our Myspace or ask us what the name Gilgal means to us.)

From there, I saved up all I could during the summer of 2006, and printed my first couple of designs. That fall Gilgal was born, and it has been a whirlwind ever since, from music festivals to my childhood friend helping me take Gilgal to the next level.

Check back for Post 2 of 3, which will discuss what band Burgin has worked with and more.