Posted in Whathaveyou on January 28th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Two more adds to Eye of the Stoned Goat 5 this afternoon, and they expand the festival’s reach just about as far as it can go and still be in the continental US. The fest, which is set for June 12 and 13 in Amityville, Long Island, has just announced that Seattle’s Wounded Giant will make their first appearance and that Connecticut’s Curse the Son will return for their second time to the Eye of the Stoned Goat‘s migratory stage after taking part in Eye of the Stoned Goat 4 last May in Worcester, Massachusetts (review here).
What the bands have in common — besides riffs — is an allegiance with New Jersey-based STB Records. The label oversaw a long-awaited vinyl issue of Curse the Son‘s spectacularly stoned 2012 outing, Psychache (review here), last year, and a second pressing is already in the works for Wounded Giant‘s newly-released-and-gone split with Goya (review here) through STB, which as ever is giving the heavy due treatment in an assortment of limited pressings and special editions.
Wounded Giant will so far be traveling the farthest to attend Eye of the Stoned Goat 5, the lineup of which also features East Coast acts like Lord Fowl, White Dynomite, John Wilkes Booth, Weed is Weed, Gozu, Kingsnake and It’s Not Night: It’s Space, but I wouldn’t be surprised if fest organizer Brendan Burns has a couple tricks up his sleeve still to come for the two-day event. We’ll see what comes, I guess.
Announcements came through thusly:
You people ready for some more heavy hitters..?
Of course you are…
It’s a honor to have with us on this years fest, the blistering monstrous sounds of Seattle Washington’s very own Wounded Giant!!! Also on board for their second ‘Stoned Goat is Connecticut’s own, and STB Records stalwarts Curse the Son!!!
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 28th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Among other things, no doubt, Minsk‘s first album in more than half a decade, The Crash and the Draw, continues Orion Landau‘s streak of righteous cover art. Details of the record are beginning to surface, including that side A boasts a progression spanning the length of four-tracks and that Sanford Parker, who’s no longer actually playing in the band, nonetheless helmed much of the recording. It’s been six years since With Echoes in the Movement of Stone (review here), and Minsk‘s lineup has been considerably revamped, so I’m not even sure that record can serve as any indicator of what to expect from a new outing, but damn I’m looking forward to finding out.
Minsk also tour Europe this Spring with Floor on a run that includes stops at Roadburn and Desertfest (dates here). The PR wire brings word about the record:
MINSK: Long-Running Sound Alchemists To Release First Full-Length In Six Years This Spring Via Relapse Records
Following a six-year slumber, Illinois enigmatic sound conjurors, MINSK, are readying to unveil the otherworldly fruit of their long-anticipated new studio creation, The Crash & The Draw.
Scattered between the sleepy city of Peoria and metropolis of Chicago and drawing inspiration from a remote Belarusian city that has been burned to the ground only to be rebuilt like a phoenix rising from its own ashes, MINSK has been cultivating sonic exploration and alchemical outpourings since 2002. Rooted in the post-metal landscape that brought forth visionaries like Neurosis and Isis, with their latest offering, The Crash & The Draw, MINSK step out of the shadows of the giants of their genre to create a psychedelic blend of melodic, trance-inducing heaviness. Recorded almost exclusively in The Prairie State, The Crash & The Draw was captured by the band alongside Sanford Parker (Twilight, Voivod, Eyehategod, Yob etc.) at Earth Analog in Tolono, mixed by Parker and MINSK at Hypercube in Chicago and mastered by Collin Jordan (Eyehategod, Indian, Wovenhand, Voivod etc.) at The Boiler Room in Chicago with additional vocal tracking by Scott Evans (Kowloon Walled City, Old Man Gloom, Floor etc.) at Antisleep Audio in Oakland, California and further tracking, editing, and mixing by Kevin Rendleman at Trash Rocket Audio and Aaron Austin at We Know Who You Are, both in Peoria. The record includes the striking cover creation of Orion Landau (Yob, Inter Arma, Red Fang etc.).
An instant contender for one of the most forward-thinking metal records of the year, The Crash & The Draw is a thematic continuation of the group’s long standing fascination with alchemical and esoteric ideologies, with marked nods toward the thought and writings of perennial inspiration, Kahlil Gibran, and the espoused words of Hermes Trismegistus, the fabled author of the Corpus Hermeticum and other sacred texts. The album boasts eleven arresting movements that transcend the confines of post-metal, sludge and psychedelia. A crucial sonic passage through dark and light that’s at once crushing, hallucinatory and at times, spiritually illuminating, tracks ebb and flow with a pastoral elegance and tangible urgency. A fitting audio soundscapade for those souls devoted to the manifestations of Neurosis, Rwake, Yob, Isis and the like.
The Crash & The Draw Track Listing: 1. To The Initiate 2. Within And Without 3. Onward Procession I. These Longest Of Days 4. Onward Procession II. The Soil Calls 5. Onward Procession III. The Blue Hour 6. Onward Procession IV. Return, The Heir 7. Conjunction 8. The Way Is Through 9. To You There Is No End 10. To The Garish Remembrance Of Failure 11. When The Walls Fell
The Crash & The Draw will be released via Relapse Records in North America on April 7th, 2015, April 3rd, 2015 in Germany, Benelux and Finland and April 6th, 2015 in the UK and rest of the world and will come available on CD, double LP and digitally. Further info including track teasers and preorder links to be unveiled in the coming weeks.
Seattle trio Serial Hawk have a new album coming soon. Last year, before releasing their Lying in Wait 7″ in the fall, the three-piece made the trip to Portland, Oregon, to take part in the Ceremony of Sludge festival, along with Lamprey, Holy Grove, Blackwitch Pudding, Sioux, Disenchanter and others. Over the last couple months, parts of each act’s set have been premiered here. Serial Hawk played the first night of the fest, March 7, with Lamprey, Towers, and Beard of Bees at Club 21 in Portland, and the video was filmed by Cole Boggess and Justin Anderson with audio by Tim Burke.
The song is called “Desolate,” and it comes as a preview of what the new Serial Hawk LP holds in store in following up the 2014 single, 2012’s Buried in the Gray EP and the band’s first demo, released in 2011. Drummer Sean Bulkley, who was announced as the band’s drummer at the end of last Jan., does the honors in starting the song with a persistent tom rhythm that holds firm as the guitar and bass rumble to life. By 90 seconds in, a heavy foundation is established, and the rolling riffery that takes hold from there is both massive and open, guitarist Will Bassin topping the crash and distortion with raw shouts while bassist Adam Holbrook drives home a groove to which even the camera can’t seem to resist nodding.
A big slowdown brings about some choice feedback-laden deconstruction as Serial Hawk build the track up only to tear it apart again. Their appearance at Ceremony of Sludge was the first night of a West Coast tour that lasted two weeks (they did a full US tour in the Fall as well), and it seems pretty safe to say that run got off to a good start.
More on the new Serial Hawk album hopefully to come as we near the release. Enjoy “Desolate” in the meantime, with thanks to Justin Brown and Ceremony of Sludge:
Serial Hawk, “Desolate” Live at Ceremony of Sludge 2014 in Portland, OR
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 28th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Ukrainian heavy rockers Stoned Jesus will have their third album, The Harvest, out by the time they hit the road on their European tour. The arrival of that record is something to look forward to — it has plenty of company this year, but is a standout nonetheless — and it will also mark the trio’s first US gig as part of the Psycho California fest in May. This tour happens before that, however, and it will include stops at the Mars Red Sky-affiliated Make it Sabbathy in Bordeaux at a whole host of festivals, among them Sky High and Riff Ritual. Something tells me we’re working on a theme.
Sound of Liberation sent the dates for the full run down the PR wire:
STONED JESUS – “The Harvest” Release Tour – March 13th to April 4th!
Ukrainian outstanding trio STONED JESUS will hit the European roads again from MARCH 13TH to APRIL 4TH, three weeks during witch they will spread a brand new load of tunes picked from their upcoming (and long awaited) album, “THE HARVEST”!!
To be released in March, “THE HARVEST” is Kiev’s outfit’s third album, and features 6 awesome tracks (believe us!) including their already famous “Here Comes The Robots”! Do not miss this song’s video premiere: subscribe now to their new official YOUTUBE CHANNEL!
Then, check-out the dates and the stunning tour poster, buy your tickets, and get ready to be reaped!
13.03.15 (D) Esslingen – Hell Over Hesslingen Festival 14.03.15 (D) Frankfurt – Sky High Festival 15.03.15 (D) Freiburg – White Rabbit 17.03.15 (D) Karlsruhe – Alte Hackerei 18.03.15 (D) Würzburg – Immerhin 19.03.15 (D) Jena – Kulturbahnhof 20.03.15 (D) Kiel – Schaubude 21.03.15 (D) Berlin – Heavy Spring Equinox Sessions 23.03.15 (D) Hamburg – Rock Cafe 24.03.15 (D) Dresden – Ost Pol 25.03.15 (D) Lichtenfels – Paunchy Cats 26.03.15 (It) Milano – Lo Fi 27.03.15 (Ch) Olten – Coq D’or 28.03.15 (It) Vicenza – E20 Underground 30.03.15 (F) Bordeaux – Make It Sabbathy 31.03.15 (F) Clermont Ferrand – Raymond Bar 01.04.15 (F) Chambery – Brin De Zinc 02.04.15 (F) Nice – Caught By The Fuzz 03.04.15 (Sp) Barcelona – Riff Ritual Festival 04.04.15 (Sp) Madrid – Stoner Fest
Spirit Caravan‘s reunion last year earned them no shortage of love on both their US and European tours, and while that will no doubt continue in 2015 as the band comes together to headline gigs like the inaugural Maryland Doom Fest this June (info here) along with The Skull. The prospect of new material looms pretty large when it comes to Spirit Caravan. Their most recent outing, such as it is, is the 2003 MeteorCity compilation The Last Embrace, which culled together the bulk of their discography from their early singles as Shine on through to their final recorded tracks. That was, however, 12 years ago, and we’re even further removed from Spirit Caravan‘s classic 1999 debut, Jug Fulla Sun. What would become a landmark in Maryland-style heavy will be 16 this year — old enough to drive in some states — and while Wino certainly showed with Saint Vitus‘ 2012 reunion album, Lillie: F-65, that such outings can produce righteous results, particularly with Vitus/Spirit Caravan drummer Henry Vasquez propelling them, it remains to be seen whether Spirit Caravan will even get to the point of writing new material.
And it was three years before Vitus got to that point as well, so even if they do, there’s no guarantee such a thing would happen in 2015 or even 2016. That’s not to say it can’t — Wino‘s certainly a prolific enough cat, and one imagines bassist Dave Sherman would be on board despite his commitments with Weed is Weed and Earthride – but I’d rather err on the side of caution and call it unlikely than expect it and not have it show up. Fortunately, there’s enough documentation of both Spirit Caravan‘s reunion tours and their original run to get by in the meantime. We turn to the latter for this week’s Wino Wednesday, and find the original Spirit Caravan trio — Wino on guitar/vocals, Sherman on bass and Gary Isom on drums — live on stage at The 8×10 in Baltimore, Maryland. We don’t get the full set, or at least it looks that way since they’re tuning at the end of the video as opposed to breaking down the backline, but it’s certainly enough time for them to get their point across in cuts like “Black Flower,” “Dreamwheel” and “Retroman.”
Spirit Caravan, Live at The 8×10, Baltimore, Maryland, July 22, 2000
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 28th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
If you’re wondering what you might expect from Absorb / Fabric / Cascade, what with its slashy title and all, look no further. Along with the preorder link, El Paraiso Records gives a pretty thorough runthrough — more like a “funthrough,” am I right??? — of the second solo album from Jonas Munk, better known as the guitarist and producer of Danish desert jammers Causa Sui. And I won’t lie, it’s an enticing description. Munk‘s bandmate, Jakob Skøtt, as tended toward progressive texturing in his own solo material, and Munk‘s 2012 solo debut, Pan, showcased krautrock leanings as well in its use of classic synth and guitar, as you can hear with the pulsating”Current” below. As these guys continue to branch out with solo offerings, I can only look forward more to what they might bring to the next Causa Sui. Whether they’re getting it all out of their system so they can return to head-down fuzz groove or whether these proggy elements will show up more in that band even than they did on 2013’s Euporie Tide, I feel like there isn’t really an option by which the listener loses out.
I look forward to hearing how or if it all ties together. Before we get there, Absorb / Fabric / Cascade is up for preorders now and will ship in March. Info follows, yoinked from the El Paraiso website:
Jonas Munk: Absorb / Fabric / Cascade LP PREORDER
Second solo LP from Causa Sui guitar player/producer Jonas Munk. These three long pieces aren’t defined by Munks signature guitar-approach, but is rather a musical vision of vintage synthesizers, organs, piano and analog electronics elegantly weaved together to create extensive formations of pure sound. The harmonic simplicity and unrestricted dedication to sonic balance and texture is something of a first in Munk’s body of work. This is pattern music, characterized by slow builds and subtle, but refined, transformations, where gradual tectonic shifts and tiny harmonic gestures generate vivid emotional responses. Instead of imposing any direct intention or meaning, it’s an album that can create a mental environment for the listener to expand and open up into.
Absorb, taking up the entire A-side, is a piece of meticulous balance, structured from techniques recalling the classical minimalists: soft-glowing analog synthesizer patterns in perpetual motion, creating new harmonic content as each bar progresses. Gradually, randomized modular effects are introduced as well as layers of white noise and detuned, heavily tube-overdriven guitar drones, slowly bathing the piece in warmly filtered fuzz.
The B-side opens with two identical organ lines played against each other. After a few minutes the organs lock into a an effortless flow, gently rolling towards a pastoral peak several minutes later, where piano and various layers of electronics enters the soundscape, recalling the blissed-out spiritualism of Alice Coltrane or Popol Vuh.
The album’s last track, Cascade, opens peacefully but soon enough crosses into multi-textural self-oscillating psychedelia – related in spirit to Munk’s previous solo album, Pan, released in 2012. Gradually the intertwined layers of sound rises to enormous billows of sonic saturation, where each drone harmonizes against layers of distorted pulses.
Music like this is perceived as incredibly simple and free flowing, but, as is the case with the biological world, reveals textural minutiae and interweaved intricacy once studied close-up. Every tiny detail serves the bigger picture. It’s music that’s practically vibrating with possibility.
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 27th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Not to take credit where I shouldn’t or anything like that, but last month, I was talking about Ufomammut and Conan being in the US around the same time for Maryland Deathfest and how a tour with the both of them would be the heaviest thing in the universe and blah blah blah. Now here we are just weeks later and Ufomammut is teaming up with Conan for the release tour celebrating the arrival of their new album, Ecate, on Neurot Recordings – and it’s happening in Europe. Don’t get me wrong, it’s cool to be anywhere on a planet where this kind of thing comes together, but it sure would be neat to have that bill on the same continent where I live. Call me crazy.
Sound of Liberation sent word of impending destruction:
SOUND OF LIBERATION PROUDLY PRESENTS UFOMAMMUT “ECATE” RELEASE TOUR
APRIL 18TH TO 30TH 2015
Few days ago, UFOMAMMUT unveiled details about their upcoming 7th album “ECATE”, which is due out on MARCH 30TH 2015 via Neurot Recordings! Here is their PR company statement, in case you missed it:
“The Italian power trio, known for their almightily heavy capabilities and psychedelic prowess, have as many discernible similarities as they do differences to their formative roots. Never pandering to the easy classification of doom, UFOMAMMUT charge their sludgy output with inimitable energy and wild, wayfaring ambition which is matched by the tightknit musical understanding that flows telepathically between the three members; Poia, Urlo, and Vita.
On their latest album, UFOMAMMUT take a confident step forward with their craft, orchestrating atmospheric processions that take the six songs on the album to places as of yet uncharted, the only guide being that of Ecate (Hecate in English), the three-sided goddess who moves between the realms of the living, the dead, and the gods.
Traditionally associated with matters of the liminal (statues of her can be found at crossroads and city walls, where she would be believed to either bless or curse travellers), she represents the link between the past, the present and the future in a way which resonates true with Ufomammut, and with the name of the band, too.”
Given that, and knowing that you are so looking forward for more information, we are thrilled to present UFOMAMMUT’s “Ecate Release Tour”, from APRIL 18TH to 30TH 2015, highlighted by appearances at both Desertfests!
On many shows, they will be supported by Liverpool’s brain crushers CONAN, for what is going to be incredibly heavy events! Check-out the dates, and be there!
Watch also below the first two in a series of video trailers for the album, which we shall be revealing over the course of the next few weeks. These short videos offer a chance to explore the story behind the recording of the album and the roots of their sound, re-affirming the band’s DIY approach to everything they do.
Posted in Reviews on January 27th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
At 81 years old, alto saxophonist Sonny Simmons has overseen a career that spans decades in forward-thinking jazz. The Dec. 2014 Svart Records release, Nomadic, is nonetheless one of two full-lengths Simmons issued last year, the other being Leaving Knowledge, Wisdom and Brilliance on Improvising Beings. For the four songs of Nomadic, Simmons partners with sitarist Michel Kristof (also Other Matter), bassist Thomas Bellier (also Blaak Heat Shujaa) and drummer Sébastien Bismuth (also Abrahma), who form a trio dubbed Moksha Samnyasin, and explores somehow-primal/somehow-contemplative, unhindered jazz that finds further roots in heavy psychedelia, Bellier‘s bass tone and recording style a recognizable element for anyone who’s heard his band, and Bismuth‘s percussion style itching to nestle into steady grooves as a foundation for Simmons‘ extended wandering pieces. Nomadic is a powerful listening experience, with cover art that calls to mind ’60s-era Miles Davis or Charles Mingus and an aesthetic no less ambitious stretched out over “Help Them through this World” (14:45), “We are Entering a Place of That” (7:58), “I Put it in a Dark Area Where I Don’t Remember No More” (14:18) and “When it Comes, I Don’t Fight It” (8:17), all four recorded by Bellier in 2011 with a feel that, if it’s not live, it’s close enough to it that it hardly matters. A creative spirit brims at the album’s core, whether it’s the dense payoff of the opener or the saxophone’s solo finish to the final two tracks, the last of them as blazing as anything that came before it on the record. By the time they get there, that’s saying something.
Bismuth, Bellier and Kristof together can’t compete with Simmons in terms of resumé, but Nomadic finds them much more than a backing band. Very often, it’s the bass and drums setting the atmospheric foundation for a given movement — stretches bring to mind a faster Om, which Kristof‘s sitar adds to fluidly — a wash of crash cymbal in “Help Them through this World” foreshadowing the spaces Nomadic will inhabit as Simmons seems to breathe out echoing notes in another context would be the stuff of smoke-filled halls but here retain a Eastern flavor in no small part because of their playing off the sitar and the molten grooving around them. A two-sided vinyl-style symmetry holds true even on the CD release, but much of the album’s atmospheric course is set by the time the 14-minutes of the opener are done, Simmons stepping in with Bellier‘s bassline and Kristof‘s sitar atop Bismuth‘s unmistakably heavy drumming, even if its patterns are expanded upon with subsequent tracks. “We are Entering a Place of That” starts off quiet after the high-energy finish of “Help Them through this World,” Simmons easing the sax in amid cymbal wash and the steady bassline as though waking it up. A subtle and satisfying build emerges, but is driven to less of a “finale” than the preceding cut, and instead, as they approach the seventh minute, bass, sitar, sax and drums exit and Simmons talks for a minute or so about being in Egypt, the universal nature of art as a piece of what makes a culture and so on. Less a lecture than an anecdote from him, despite the weight of the theme. It’s brief, but one imagines it is just a tiny sampling of the stories told during the session.
The two sides are of roughly equal length, yet I wouldn’t say Nomadic makes a point of its symmetry. The album’s second half begins with “I Put it in a Dark Area Where I Don’t Remember No More,” a build that feels somewhat in conversation with side A’s opener but ultimately proves to be the highlight of the record, Simmons and Moksha Samnyasin finding their most engaging mesh in slower melodic drones, layers of ambient guitar-ish noise, and a gradually unfolding forward march from Bismuth‘s toms brought to full-breadth righteousness just before 10 minutes in only to have Simmons finish off the track on his own, leading to the solo-drums start of “When it Comes, I Don’t Fight It,” the bassline joining first with far-off sitar, electronic swirl and subtle sax notes to add serenity to an otherwise surprising tension. “When it Comes, I Don’t Fight It” hits its mark with Nomadic‘s slowest progression, but Simmons – clearly not fighting it — takes hold and proceeds to belt out a three-minute solo that caps the song and record with a fitting “woo!” and laugh at the end. That laugh in a way really speaks to the crux of what Sonny Simmons and Moksha Samnyasin have on offer with Nomadic, namely an experience rooted in the raw joy of creative exploration. There is a persistent improvised feel to the material, particularly Simmons‘ own parts, and it feeds an overarching spontaneity that makes both individual pieces and the album front to back all the more engaging. Given the span of Simmons‘ career, Nomadic‘s breadth is even more impressive, pushing boundaries where many would otherwise be content to rehash older ideas or rest on the laurels of past glories.
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 27th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Washington D.C. trio Borracho have some pretty killer shows coming up. First off, they’re headed to the West Coast this week to meet up with Castle for two gigs ahead of an appearance at a Strange Magic Records showcase alongside The Chuck Norris Experiment and others. Upon their return, they’ll hit up a few killer regional gigs, first with Carousel and Joy in their hometown next month and then on a weekender that includes two gigs in PA with Doctor Smoke and Wasted Theory and one night in Baltimore alongside Elder. They’ve got a date in there with Lo-Pan as well. There isn’t one of those shows that isn’t a score from the standpoint of anyone who makes it out to them.
By those March shows, Borracho will also have a new split 7″ out with Brooklyn’s Eggnogg on Palaver Records. You might recall their most recent release was a shared single with Boston’s Cortez that came out last year (review here). Looks like they’re set to give another quick look at some new material ahead of their next full-length outing, whenever that might arrive.
They sent this newsletter down the PR wire:
California Bound This Week!
We’re just a couple days away from our first west coast shows. Join us at one of the shows below, or if you’re not in Cali, forward this email to a friend or five who are!
Jan. 29 – Oakland, CA @ The Golden Bull w/ Castle & Heavy Action Jan. 30 – Los Angeles, CA @ Five Star Bar w/ Castle & Behold! The Monolith & The Love Below Jan. 31 – Pomona, CA @ Characters w/ The Chuck Norris Experiment, PRV13, and Chango’s Psychotic Garage PLUS Jake Starr
New 7″ Single Out in March
It’s been a little while since we dropped some new music on you. This one has been a little hung up, but we’re excited to announce a brand new split single with Eggnogg on Nashville’s Palaver Records. King’s Disease will appear with Eggnogg’s Slugworth, and we’ll be celebrating its release with a hometown show in DC on March 20 at The Pinch with the riotous Lo-Pan and Against the Grain.
Those of you on the east coast will have a bunch of chances to catch us with some other badass bands over the next couple of months. Check the schedule below. Hope to see you out there!
Feb. 19 – Washington, DC @ Velvet Lounge w/ Carousel, Joy & Caustic Casanova March 20 – Washington, DC @ The Pinch w/ Lo-Pan & Against the Grain March 26 – Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie w/ Doctor Smoke, Wasted Theory & Heavy Temple March 27 – York, PA @ The Depot w/ Doctor Smoke & Wasted Theory March 28 – Baltimore, MD @ Metro Gallery w/ Elder, Fortress & The Convocation
Posted in Reviews on January 27th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
It had been more than a month since the last time I was at a show, between holidays, injury and family stuff, and I think I needed it more than I realized until I made my way upstairs in Providence, Rhode Island’s Columbus Theatre. There were two Montreal-based bands on the bill, USA out of Vietnam and The Besnard Lakes, and I was there to catch the former, having dug 2014’s Crashing Diseases and Incurable Airplanes debut and its ambitious, progressive wash of post-rock instrumental melody, moments of doomer heft and harmonized vocals.
The room upstairs at the Columbus was seated. More of a theater space. Somewhere one might put on a one-act play or something of that sort, lots of talking, knowing nods in response, and so on. Lights were low. I took a seat behind what turned out to be the band and waited about 20 minutes for them to go on. It was early, and not that cold out, but I had the dog in the car — she’s gotten pretty bad about being left alone; it’s a longer story than fits here — so time was a factor in my mind anyway. Still, an early show, a band I’d never seen before and Providence itself as a city I’ve come very much to enjoy being in, I felt like I was winning out. Before long, USA out of Vietnam took the stage, guitarist/vocalist/frontman Son of Fogman introducing them as some other band and citing a “radical style change” to illicit the first of several chuckles from the crowd.
A five-piece with made-up names — El Tigre, Rockhard, Fogman, Blankie, Son of Fogman — and four vocalists, they were a lot for the acoustics in that room to take, but it was easy enough to get a sense of what they were going for in bringing Crashing Diseases and Incurable Airplanes to life. In the heavier moments, a song like “Asphodel I/1322″ bordered on crushing, and the wash in “Leg of Lamb” (please forgive me if I have the songs wrong) was suitably consuming. Son of Fogman proved more of a frontman presence live than on the album, belting out parts where the lead vocals are mixed further behind the guitar, bass, keys and/or synth, and while the dynamic felt nascent, it was also plain to see USA out of Vietnam‘s gelling process underway in both how they approached parts of the songs themselves and how they interacted with each other on stage.
What worked primarily was the smoothness with which the fivesome made the shifts between softer moments of contemplation and nod-inducing, pedal-stomped tonal weight. They’d hardly be the first to lull listeners into a false sense of security and then clobber them over the head with a heavy riff, but there was more of a decided shift live than on the album, where everything is coated in melody, and the crunch fit them well. Son of Fogman thanked the room profusely and noted how fortunate they were to play there, some good-natured ribbing of sound-guy Ryan ensued, and they closed out with more sprawl to make way for The Besnard Lakes. It was still pretty early.
Late enough for me, however. I probably could’ve stayed and enjoyed the headliner, but particularly with the dog in the car and it being January, I thought it better to roll out. Was good to be out and about, even if for just a little while, though, and satisfying to watch USA out of Vietnam present their material live. Something tells me it won’t be the last time I run into them.
No extra pics because I wasn’t really comfortable getting up in front of everyone else seated to go up front and take them, but thanks for reading anyway.
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 27th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
It’s hard not to get all dorked out every time the prospect of new Goatsnake music is mentioned. Sometimes, I’ll admit, I don’t even try. But it’s been five years now since Goatsnake played their first reunion shows, and that’s no small amount of time for the band to put music together. When I step back from that so-easily-leapt nerd precipice, though, I have to wonder what this record is actually going to sound like. Nick Raskulinecz is a much different producer today than when he recorded Flower of Disease, and I guess my only apprehension comes from how special those two Goatsnake records are. It won’t be easy to add a third to that canon.
But I guess that might be part of why it’s taken half a decade for this record to come together. No doubt in my mind they can pull it off — if they didn’t think they could do it, I can’t imagine they’d bother trying — I’m just anxious to hear the results of this sessions and if the natural, easy-greasy vibe is still there. Fingers crossed we get some audio soon.
Until then, here’s Euro tour dates and some teaser text, fresh off the PR wire:
GOATSNAKE ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR; NEW ALBUM DETAILS SOON TO BE REVEALED
Los Angeles, California’s Goatsnake have announced further live dates in Europe, kicking off at the end of May with their set at Temples Festival, and taking the band through territories new to them. This comes in the light of the news of a brand new album from the band, which they have just completed recording, and will see release on Southern Lord this summer.
The new album will feature the familiar faces of Greg Rogers (The Obsessed, Sonic Medusa), providing drums, Greg Anderson of Sunn O))) taking care of the riffs, Pete Stahl (Scream, Wool, Earthlings?) on vocals, and new bassist new and Cape Fear North Carolina legend Scott Renner (Brickbat, Sourvein, Sonic Medusa). On production duties is Nick Raskulinecz, who, since being introduced to Dave Grohl during the recording sessions of Flower of Disease, has gone on to work with seminal artists such as Rush, Alice in Chains, Mastodon and Ghost, and has won Grammys with the Foo Fighters. United again, he and the band are sure to serve a menacing cut of the time-honoured ultra-heavy rock they are infamous for.
Further details of this are to come, meanwhile Greg Anderson did offer this insight, “We are beyond stoked about the new Snake album. We all rose to the occasion and with the help of Nick and the state of Tennessee delivered the fucking goods. More soul, more power, more balls.”
Here are the dates:
GOATSNAKE TOUR DATES: 30/05/2015 – UK, Bristol – Temples Festival 01/06/2015 – BE, Kortrijk – De Kreun 02/06/2015 – NL, Amsterdam – Melkweg 03/06/2015 – DE, Berlin – SO36 04/06/2015 – DE, Siegen – Freakvalley Festival 06/06/2015 – GR, Athens – AN Club
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 26th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Lineup announcements have started coming through for the previously revealed The Eye of the Stoned Goat 5festival, which will take place June 12 and 13 in Amityville, NY. It’s looking like a pretty tight assemblage of bands hitting Long Island for the fest, with Lord Fowl and John Wilkes Booth leading the charge as the first two announcements a couple weeks ago and Weed is Weed and White Dynomite just added last night to a bill that already also includes Kingsnake, Gozu, It’s Not Night: It’s Space, Brimstone Coven and Ol’ Time Moonshine.
If you’ll indulge me, I’ll get caught up on the announcements, including those for Weed is Weed and White Dynomite, just so we’re all on the same page going forward.
Here they are going all the way back:
Alright folks, it’s time to drop a couple heavy hitters on ya!
We are extremely proud to announce, appearing at this year’s festival is Massachusetts Rock n’ Roll time bomb White Dynomite!
Also, a band that truly needs no introduction, with former members of Pentagram, Spirit Caravan and Earthride… the almighty Weed is Weed!!!
We’ve been trying to get these guys on the ‘Stoned Goat for years, this year the planets all aligned in our favor.. Bringing their tough-as-nails, working class grooves to Long Island this year is none other than Philadelphia’s own Kingsnake!!!
Announcing the next two artists joining the Amityville Music Hall stage at ESG5 this June…. Small Stone Records and local New York Psych-Rock trio It’s Not Night: It’s Space!!!
Also, hailing from the depths of Toronto Canada, the demon-rock peddlers Ol’ Time Moonshine!!!
Alright folks, it’s time to kick things up a notch! Joining us on this year’s ESG5 installment is none other than Small Stone Records and Desertfest 2014 alums GOZU!!!
Next up…. We are thrilled to announce that appearing at ‘Eye of the Stoned Goat 5″ on June 12-13th is Long Island’s very own Moon Tooth and Metal Blade Records Occult Rock Dealers Brimstone Coven!!!
Eye of the Stoned Goat is proud to announce the first two bands appearing at ESG5 in Long Island, NY June 12-13th are none other than former ESG alums- LORD FOWL and John Wilkes Booth!
Today, Jan. 26, is an off-date for Karma to Burn‘s current North American tour. Last night, they were in Dallas for show number 18 of the 33-date run. Tomorrow, they’ll be in Albuquerque, New Mexico, alongside Sierra, with whom they’ve been touring in support of the US release of their latest album, Arch Stanton (review here). The instrumental trio, whose roots trace back to guitarist/founder Will Mecum‘s origins in Morgantown, West Virginia, have always done it the hard way, and this stint I’m quite sure is no exception.
But then, there’s always been something argumentative at the heart of Karma to Burn. Since the original lineup of the band came roaring back in 2010 with their fourth full-length, Appalachian Incantation (review here), Karma to Burn have reminded both friends and foes of their uncompromising position when it comes to straight-ahead riffing and the vision at the heart of their project. Mecum, who leads the trio now comprised of himself, drummer Evan Devine and bassist Eric Clutter, is the driving force behind Karma to Burn‘s no-frills heaviness, and half a decade after the group’s rebirth, there’s as little room for argument as ever.
Switzerland-based Snakehill Productions has put together a series of behind-the-scenes videos interviewing Karma to Burn about some of their life on tour and their general feelings and attitudes on being in the band at this point. It’s called “The Making of Arch Stanton,” but the vibe is really more about getting into what it’s like being Karma to Burn than about which amps were used to record “54” or anything like that. Either way, it’s a cool chance to hear Mecum, Devine and Clutter talk about what they’re listening to and what they dig about playing different songs, as well as their picks for the next in the band’s line of intermittent vocalists.
Remaining tour dates follow the clips below. Enjoy:
Karma to Burn, The Making of Arch Stanton Pt. 3 & 4
Remaining dates: 1/27/2015 Launchpad – Albuquerque, NM 1/28/2015 The Nile Theater – Mesa, AZ 1/30/2015 Loaded – Hollywood, CA 1/31/2015 Bottom of the Hill – San Francisco, CA 2/01/2015 Starlite Lounge – Sacramento, CA 2/03/2015 El Corazon – Seattle, WA 2/04/2015 Rickshaw Theatre – Vancouver, BC 2/06/2015 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR 2/07/2015 The Shredder – Boise, ID 2/08/2015 Area 51 – Salt Lake City, UT 2/09/2015 Lost Lake Lounge – Denver, CO 2/10/2015 Replay Lounge – Lawrence, KS 2/11/2015 Fubar – St Louis, MO 2/12/2015 Red Line Tap – Chicago, IL 2/13/2015 123 Pleasant Street – Morgantown, WV
Posted in Whathaveyou on January 26th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Colour Haze and Radio Moscow on the bill. Given enough time, I’m quite sure I could come up 100,000 things I’d want to see less than that. Start with “anything” and work your way back from there. It might take a few minutes, but given how high that show would be in this hypothetical hierarchy of stuff-I’d-like-to-see, there’s plenty of room for monuments, mountaintops, oceans, and so on. We’d hit the 100,000 mark no problem. I’m sure of it.
The two acts will begin headlining the Up in Smoke Volume 5 tour — actually they call it a “psychedelic roadfestival,” which I like — on Feb. 27, joined for a stretch by Cherry Choke, whose new album, Raising the Waters, is due out next month on Elektrohasch, and meeting up along the way with The Sun and the Wolf, Mars Red Sky, The Midnight Ghost Train and others. Watching Colour Haze play a hometown show in Munich with Radio Moscow and Mars Red Sky? Yeah, I’d catch that if the opportunity were to present itself.
PR wire info comes courtesy of Sound of Liberation, who put the whole thing together:
COLOUR HAZE – Up In Smoke Tour (with RADIO MOSCOW and guests) kicks off in 1 month – Check Videotrailer, Dates and News
2011 seems like yesterday when we decided to pack up 3 to 4 awesome bands in a bus to tour Europe and rock your ears! 4 editions have gone by, 2 packed indoor festivals have witnessed your love for the music and the concept, so ladies and gentelmen, get ready!
In a month, we will write a new volume in the UP IN SMOKE history, and it will be a blast!! The fifth edition of your favorite roadfestival will feature 3 awesome bands for your pleasure:
Europes most well known psychedelic institution COLOUR HAZE which have their brand new album “To the Highest Gods we Know” in their suitcase!
America’s most heavy blues machine RADIO MOSCOW whose last album “Magical Dirt” (released in June 2014) sent all of us on another trip into heavy psychedelic headphone heaven.
UK’s fuzz driven psych rockers CHERRY CHOKE (from March 1st to 7th only) whose new album “Raising The Waters” will be released in the next weeks! Stay tuned for updates, you don’t wanna miss it!
On the other shows, Colour Haze and Radio Moscow will go with other outstanding special guests. Watch the amazing TRAILER made by Stonnerrock.eu, and check-out the listing below for details and tickets’ links. We invite you to join the trip! Come on and blow up your mind at the UP IN SMOKE ROADFESTIVAL!
Colour Haze & Radio Moscow
Plus Special Guests 27.02 (D) Stuttgart, Universum (w/ The Sun & The Wolf) 28.02 (D) Cologne, Live Music Hall (w/ The Sun & The Wolf) 01.03 (UK) London, The Garage (w/ Cherry Choke) 02.03 (FR) Paris, Le Divan du Monde (w/ Cherry Choke) 03.03 (BEL) Brussels, Magasin 4 (w/ Cherry Choke) 04.03 (D) Hamburg, Markthalle (w/ Cherry Choke) 05.03 (D) Berlin, SO36 (w/ Cherry Choke) 06.03 (A) Vienna, Arena (w/ Cherry Choke) 07.03 (A) Salzburg, Rockhouse (w/ Cherry Choke) 08.03 (D) Leipzig, Taubchenthal (w/ Kalamahara) 09.03 (D) Munich, Feierwerk (w/ Mars Red Sky) 10.03 (IT) Milano, Lofi (support band tba) 11.03 (D) Frankfurt, Das Bett (w/ The Midnight Ghost Train) 12.03 (NL) Tilburg, 013 (support band tba) 13.03 (D) Würzburg, Posthalle (w/ The Grounding) 14.03 (D) Hannover, Faust (support band tba)
Posted in audiObelisk on January 26th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Sludge rock trio Shepherd are set to release their debut long-player, Stereolithic Riffalocalypse (spoiler alert: it’s heavy), on March 7. The Bangalore, India-based three-piece — who are not to be confused with the defunct German doom outfit of the same name — have shared stages with countrymen acts like Bevar Sea and Djinn and Miskatonic, among many others, and their first album follows behind demos released in 2011 and 2012 and the 2012 live offering, Live at Kyra (18-02-12) (also apparently known as Open Mic Surgery and pressed in a limited CD edition under that title), all three songs from which also appear on the upcoming record, which basks in classic heavy riffage in a manner befitting the name they’ve given it.
Today I have the pleasure of unveiling “Turdspeak” from Stereolithic Riffalocalypse, the second track on the album. Its low-end-rooted groove relies effectively on bassist/vocalist Abhishek Michael for its foundation, but the steady roll in guitarist/vocalist Namit Chauhan‘s riffs are always in charge, a noisy solo emerging late in the song to add to the nod punctuated by drummer/vocalist Deepak Raghu as the song’s speedier and unpretentious finale plays out having taken off from the more lurching, effects-laden beginning it’s given. “Turdspeak” effectively showcases the core impulses under which Shepherd are working — a mash of stoner groove and punk intensity. With all three members sharing vocal duties, they’re able to add variety in a way that a lot of sludge acts can’t, and as you can hear, the Echoplex-driven tones they bring to bear on “Turdspeak” are nothing if not dense.
Preorders for the album start on Feb. 1, and you can keep an eye on Shepherd‘s doings at any of the links below — their demos and Live at Kyra are available as name-your-price downloads. Reading over their bio, which follows the track here, one gets a sense both of the band’s desire to stand out in the style and their acknowledgement that India’s heavy rock scene is really just beginning to come together. Phrases like “out to make sure 2015 is their year” speak to ambition, and at the same time, they also refer to themselves as “the only band of its kind in India,” which at least to my ears seems kind of lonely. Nonetheless, they do stand out, and for more than their point of origin.
Take a listen to “Turdspeak” below, and enjoy:
Bangalore, India-based sludge/heavy rock band Shepherd is out to make sure 2015 is their year. After two years of writing, recording and several gigs at clubs and festivals in Bangalore, Shepherd is ready with their mammoth debut album, aptly titled ‘Stereolithic Riffalocalypse’, slated to release on 7th March 2015.
To kick things off, they’re giving fans a taste of the album by premiering the song “Bog Slime” on Rolling Stone India, along with revealing the tracklist and album art to Stereolithic Riffalocalypse. Formed in 2011, Shepherd is probably the only Bangalore-based sludge/heavy rock band from India. The band has been making waves in the underground, drawing Influence from the guitar-driven sounds of early 90’s hard rock (Soundgarden, The Melvins, Eyehategod) and the aural assault of 80’s hardcore punk (Black Flag, Discharge, Fear), the band has built a reputation for itself as an ever-evolving and unpredictable heavy rock entity. You don’t need more proof of that than just one listen to the nine tracks that feature on Stereolithic Riffalocalypse, which was recorded at Bangalore’s Area 51 Studio and mixed by Rahul Ranganath and mastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege, who has previously worked with the likes of YOB, Obituary, Sourvein and Old Man Gloom.
Despite a setlist that keeps growing with every gig under its belt, the band takes it a step further by introducing improvisational elements into their music – sort of a rarity in heavy music. Shepherd being the only band of its kind in India has been slowly building a reputation as one of the loudest, heaviest three-piece band to watch out for, ready to take on the rest of the country, and the world.
Shepherd is: Deepak Raghu – drums/vocals Namit Chauhan – guitars/vocals Abhishek Michael – bass/vocals
Stereolithic Riffalocalypse tracklist: 1. Spite Pit 2. Turdspeak 3. Crook 4. Black Cock of Armageddon 5. Stereolithic Riffalocalypse 6. Bog Slime 7. Wretch Salad 8. Stalebait
Recorded at Area 51 by Premik Jolly Mixed by Rahul Ranganath, Mastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege Album artwork by Sonali Zohra (Dangercat Studio)