By Matt Mattei - mmattei@timesleader.com

Pottsville progressive metal band Tusko films music video in Duryea

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James Callahan, of Kingston, visualizes a shot while Wilkes-Barre filmmaker, Terrell Bobbett, looks at a scene through his lens during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
A burning barrel adds ambiance while cast and crew film a scene for Tusko’s music video in Duryea. The story line of the short film involves a child fighting ring which is wagered on by unscrupulous adults.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
Filmmaker Terrell Bobbett, left, directs Rex Cox, 16, and Caiden Galvin-Scott, 15, in a scene for the “Answers to Unasked Questions” music video by Tusko. The progressive metal outfit hails from Pottsville and the band is recording in the New York City studio where Cox’s father, Mitch Cox, is producer and engineer.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
A group of music video extras play drinking, gambling adults during the video shoot for Tusko’s song “Answers to Unasked Questions.” The group includes Tusko bassist Sam Grim and guitarist Jim Thomas, second and third from right respectively and Conclave Studios producer Mitch Cox, third from left.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
From left: Casimir Glaude, 10, of Kingston and Hunter Puhalla, 9, of Wilkes-Barre act out a fight scene during a video shoot for progressive metal band Tusko in Duryea. The two young actors are martial artists at Downtown Dojo Karate Academy in Wilkes-Barre.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
Actors cheer on a child fighting ring during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. Lead vocalist for Tusko, Erin Linderman, first from right, participates in the shoot.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader
Actors and film crew gather for the Tusko video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. The Pottsville based progressive metal band filmed scenes for a music video for their single “Answers to Unasked Questions” at a private property on Coxton Road.
Fred Adams | for Times Leader

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    DURYEA — Progressive metal band Tusko is charging forward. The Pottsville-based five-piece is recording a new album at Conclave Studios in New York City, and the band recently shot a music video in Luzerne County.

    On Oct. 1, band members were accompanied by friends, a film director, a group of young martial artists and a slew of extras at a private property on Coxton Road to shoot a short film that will be one component — along with footage from a live Tusko performance — of a music video for the band’s single “Answers To Unasked Questions.”

    The band is comprised of guitarists Jim Thomas and Brandon Foti, bassist Sam Grim, drummer Shane Flail and lead vocalist Erin Linderman.

    Kingston resident James Callahan is director of business development for Conclave Studios and he sees a bright future for Tusko, a band he said he chased all over Pennsylvania.

    “They’re a tremendous force being held in check,” Callahan said of the band. Erin’s “a firestorm, and the boys are a heavy wind behind her.”

    Callahan described the band’s sound as a mixture of rock and math metal with psychedelic tendencies.

    Guitarist Thomas said “Answers” is a blast of energy with which the band tends to end shows.

    “It’s generally just a great song, and we’ve never had a chance to do it justice in the studio,” Thomas said.

    The short film will be able to stand on its own as a piece of art, and he described the theme as a “child ‘Fight Club‘“or a “rednecky Thunderdome.”

    Callahan said the film explores the concept of hostility in society or the idea of man against man. The story line follows a group of children forced to fight each other while a hoard of adults bets on the combat.

    “It’s the kids who realize this is no way to live and leave the adults there to ponder their actions,” Callahan said.

    With the help of a few friends and volunteers, Callahan was able to turn an overgrown property into a believable backwoods gladiator pit.

    Approximately 15 children from Downtown Dojo Karate Academy, in Wilkes-Barre, volunteered to be among the main actors in the film, and parents and friends prepped the small warriors with makeup before Wilkes-Barre filmmaker Terrell Bobbett took over as director and moulded various scenes.

    The Coxton Road property is owned by Tusko fan Rene Burnett who attended the video shoot to do makeup with her youngest daughter.

    “James is an old friend,” Burnett said of Callahan. “He (married) me and my husband. He asked if he could use the property and we said ‘absolutely.’”

    In all, more than 50 people participated in the effort.

    Tusko vocalist Linderman called the turnout “crazy” and “very humbling.”

    “This is such a great opportunity for us,” Linderman said. “It’s nice to know people are here supporting us.”

    Producer and engineer at Conclave Studios Mitch Cox said the studio is selective with its talent and offers its first class facility to artists it believes have unique talent and sound.

    “Tusko’s sound is brutal, rough, but just below the surface there’s a massive amount of complexity,” Cox said. “They’re progressive but they’re not slaves to tempo or time signature. Our job is to make them sound brutal and beautiful at the same time.”

    Callahan said Tusko is working “tirelessly” on their new record, and the band and studio hope to have the new music and the video for “Answers to Unasked Questions” ready to release some time in February. To keep up with news on Tusko’s releases, visit the band’s Facebook page at facebook.com/tuskoband or the Conclave Studios website at conclavestudios.com.

    James Callahan, of Kingston, visualizes a shot while Wilkes-Barre filmmaker, Terrell Bobbett, looks at a scene through his lens during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video1_faa.jpgJames Callahan, of Kingston, visualizes a shot while Wilkes-Barre filmmaker, Terrell Bobbett, looks at a scene through his lens during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    A burning barrel adds ambiance while cast and crew film a scene for Tusko’s music video in Duryea. The story line of the short film involves a child fighting ring which is wagered on by unscrupulous adults.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video2_faa_resized.jpgA burning barrel adds ambiance while cast and crew film a scene for Tusko’s music video in Duryea. The story line of the short film involves a child fighting ring which is wagered on by unscrupulous adults. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    Filmmaker Terrell Bobbett, left, directs Rex Cox, 16, and Caiden Galvin-Scott, 15, in a scene for the “Answers to Unasked Questions” music video by Tusko. The progressive metal outfit hails from Pottsville and the band is recording in the New York City studio where Cox’s father, Mitch Cox, is producer and engineer.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video3_faa.jpgFilmmaker Terrell Bobbett, left, directs Rex Cox, 16, and Caiden Galvin-Scott, 15, in a scene for the “Answers to Unasked Questions” music video by Tusko. The progressive metal outfit hails from Pottsville and the band is recording in the New York City studio where Cox’s father, Mitch Cox, is producer and engineer. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    A group of music video extras play drinking, gambling adults during the video shoot for Tusko’s song “Answers to Unasked Questions.” The group includes Tusko bassist Sam Grim and guitarist Jim Thomas, second and third from right respectively and Conclave Studios producer Mitch Cox, third from left.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video4_faa.jpgA group of music video extras play drinking, gambling adults during the video shoot for Tusko’s song “Answers to Unasked Questions.” The group includes Tusko bassist Sam Grim and guitarist Jim Thomas, second and third from right respectively and Conclave Studios producer Mitch Cox, third from left. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    From left: Casimir Glaude, 10, of Kingston and Hunter Puhalla, 9, of Wilkes-Barre act out a fight scene during a video shoot for progressive metal band Tusko in Duryea. The two young actors are martial artists at Downtown Dojo Karate Academy in Wilkes-Barre.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video5_faa.jpgFrom left: Casimir Glaude, 10, of Kingston and Hunter Puhalla, 9, of Wilkes-Barre act out a fight scene during a video shoot for progressive metal band Tusko in Duryea. The two young actors are martial artists at Downtown Dojo Karate Academy in Wilkes-Barre. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    Actors cheer on a child fighting ring during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. Lead vocalist for Tusko, Erin Linderman, first from right, participates in the shoot.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video6_faa.jpgActors cheer on a child fighting ring during the Tusko music video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. Lead vocalist for Tusko, Erin Linderman, first from right, participates in the shoot. Fred Adams | for Times Leader

    Actors and film crew gather for the Tusko video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. The Pottsville based progressive metal band filmed scenes for a music video for their single “Answers to Unasked Questions” at a private property on Coxton Road.
    http://www.theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/web1_video7_faa.jpgActors and film crew gather for the Tusko video shoot in Duryea Oct. 1. The Pottsville based progressive metal band filmed scenes for a music video for their single “Answers to Unasked Questions” at a private property on Coxton Road. Fred Adams | for Times Leader
    Pottsville metal band to release new music, video in 2017

    By Matt Mattei

    mmattei@timesleader.com

    Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or Twitter @TLArts

    Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or Twitter @TLArts