By: Missy Sorg
The River’s Edge Media made waves when they launched a Pittsburgh-music-based radio station in Millvale in 2014. Three years later, they are launching their second station – The Metal Edge. In keeping with the format of its predecessor, The Metal Edge will play metal music by Pittsburgh artists.
The station will be operated by Jonathan Keilback and Zach Fehl. Keilback is a local musician affiliated with metal bands Only Flesh and The Existential Gentlemen. He was also one of the organizers behind the successful Millvale Music Festival earlier this year. As for Fehl, his experience comes from the traditional over-the-air station 91.9 WCAL in California, Pennsylvania. As a writer for Metal Insider, he also brings a working knowledge of the metal music scene to the table.
“The platform The River’s Edge Radio Network has built up over the past several years has been a great asset to Pittsburgh entertainment, and with the swath of intense, heavy bands in the region, the need to launch The Metal Edge was a no-brainer,” explained Keilback.
That metal scene referenced by Keilback is definitely a force to be reckoned with. Pittsburgh was recently ranked as the third largest metal scene in the United States. According to the Encyclopedia Metallum, there are over 600 bands per 100,000 people. Pittsburgh’s hidden gem of a metal scene was also echoed in the recent ‘Parts Unknown’ airing when Anthony Bourdain visited Pittsburgh. When Bourdain was here in June, he and his crew attended a show with Lady Beast – a metal band out of the Bloomfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh.
Given Pittsburgh’s metal scene, launching The Metal Edge seemed like a no-brainer. “Over the last few months it has been very encouraging to see the reactions from the local music and arts communities regarding what we’re doing with The Metal Edge,” said Fehl. “Pittsburgh is a very unique city, with a rich history and diverse peoples, and I think that it is important to be able to contribute to the growth and sustainability of the local metal scene,” he added.
Since The Metal Edge announced a call for artists, metal bands have been eagerly signing up. The draw for them is to be aired via a 24-hour streaming service. Two of the most well known Pittsburgh metal bands, Greywalker - who was also recently voted the best metal band in Pittsburgh as a result of the City Paper’s “Best Of” poll, and Klaymore. When asked about the impact of a metal station in Pittsburgh, Lee Prisby of Klaymore stated, “Metal is an often overshadowed genre in terms of radio play. I am glad to see The River’s Edge expanding to shine some much needed spotlight on our city’s diverse metal scene with The Metal Edge.”
The River’s Edge Media studio is located in the back of the Mr. Smalls Theater complex, and will air The Metal Edge via the web. They are currently accepting metal bands who play original content and are within 150 miles of Pittsburgh. More information can be found on their site at www.metaledgepgh.com.