Video Evidence of New SardoniS

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 30th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Otherwise known as the heaviest thing to come out of Belgium since Chimay blanc, the guitar/drum duo SardoniS (there’s one capital S for each band member) shared the following clip of a new song called “Emperor,” captured live in Westmalle — otherwise known as the home of one of the world’s seven true trappist breweries. Doom in the land of beer-making monks? You’re damn right I’m posting this video. Not sure when the album’s out, but enjoy this in the meantime.

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Poobah Release Live CD from 2004

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 30th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

If you missed Ripple Music‘s reissue of Poobah‘s Let Me In, it was definitely one of the highlights of the year as far as that kind of thing goes. Killer ’70s heavy rock topped off with the virtuoso guitar of Jim Gustafson. Hard to beat.

The band just released a live CD of their set from the concert at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland from 2004, and Gustafson sent out the following email about it, which I post here in case anyone wants to get a copy from the Poobah website:

Hello, this is Jim Gustafson of Poobah. I have recently released a very rare collectible live CD, from the Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Poobah concert in 2004. This CD is 68 minutes of blazing guitar work. In addition to the 12 songs recorded live, there is also a bonus track of the newly recorded song, “Smokin’ with a Bottle of Rum.”

Poobah has signed a record deal with Ripple Music, in southern California, so there are many new projects that are headed your way. The recent re-release of Let Me In on double vinyl records with 12 bonus tracks, along with a beautifully done CD package, has been reviewed by several magazines, garnering the highest rated reviews , including Goldmine’s raves of Let Me In as the reissue of the year!

This live set burns with furious and wild guitar. Featuring, the classic Poobah songs, and recent new originals full of powerful psych-out sounds.

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Acid Witch, Stoned: I Believe It

Posted in Reviews on November 30th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

The second full-length from Detroit horror-obsessed doom and rollers Acid Witch might be the most aptly-named album of the year. They called it Stoned. Their first release through the extreme metal imprint Hell’s Headbangers (an appropriate home given Acid Witch’s deathly leanings), Stoned follows on the hooves of the Midnight Mass vinyl-only EP, released just a couple weeks prior, and fleshes out the ideas nascent on 2008’s Witchtanic Hallucinations debut. In many ways, the opening track, “Satanic Faith,” says it all. Spooky organs, horror movie samples, gleeful reveling in devil-worship; it’s all in good fun for the duo of Shagrat and Slasher Dave, and with the level of riffly mischief they get up to on tracks like “Trick or Treat,” there’s plenty of heaviness to back up the lighthearted approach.

It’s riff-led all the way. “Witchfynder Finder” sets the tone with Sabbath-worship and Trouble’s classic straightforward structures, but the death growled vocals give Stoned an atmosphere like a Hammer Horror version of CarcassHeartwork LP. Acid Witch know their doom, clearly, and they’re obviously not shy about showing off a stoner rock influence. “Trick or Treat” is among the catchiest songs on Stoned and an early highlight, but “Thundering Hooves” — its title line delivered in a cadence reminiscent of Electric Wizard’s “Dunwich” from Witchcult Today – proves no less exciting. Samples have been done to death and we all know it, but Acid Witch is so much fun to listen to, and so self-aware, that the cliché aspects of Stoned are more than half of what’s to enjoy. While I doubt either Shagrat or Slasher Dave sit around and pray to Satan, they’re not being ironic either. Rather, Acid Witch seems hell-bent on paying homage to the horror culture of the ‘70s in a way similar to a band like Hooded Menace, though their doing so takes a much less extremely metallic form. The organ on “Live Forever,” following the guitar into the solo as it does, is straight-up Deep Purple and not a move Hooded Menace would make.

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Kings Destroy, And the Rest Will Surely Perish Now Available for Purchase – $10 Paypal

Posted in Label Stuff on November 30th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Click on the Paypal button above to purchase a copy of And the Rest Will Surely Perish by Brooklyn doom outfit Kings Destroy. The cost is $10 for domestic American orders and $12 for international (you’ll recall last time it was $14). The album comes in a full jewel case with stunningly doomed artwork by Seldon Hunt and, in all honesty, I think it’s the best traditional doom record of the year.

You get your elements of Saint Vitus and Sabbath, but there’s a dirty rock edge to it too, some Church of Misery riffing and this badass ultra-groove that you just have to hear to understand. Sanford Parker did an amazing job bringing out the best in the band (the drum sound is unreal), and there are even some shades of the band’s collective NYHC pedigree in acts like Killing Time and Uppercut.

The first 20 orders come with a thank-you card. No bullshit. I bought thank-you cards, and I have them ready to go. They have a turtle on them. There were 300 discs pressed, and I have 100 to sell. You’ll note the purchase link is in the sidebar as well as above; I’ve kept two copies for myself, given one away and sold two already since putting that button live last night. 95 copies left to go out.

Thank you for your support of The Maple Forum, of Kings Destroy and of The Obelisk.

[Please note: This post will be in the top spot for the next week. New ones will appear underneath.]

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On the Radar Update: Hollow Leg’s Debut Album Out Now

Posted in On the Radar on November 29th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

You might recall I first saw the name Hollow Leg on a t-shirt of a fellow show-goer when Earthride played NYC earlier this year. If you don’t, the original post is here. If you’re too lazy to click, they’re a duo from Jacksonville, Florida, with a penchant for guitar thickness and ass kickness. I’ve been following them on the Book of Face and it turns out they’ve just released their debut album.

It’s called Instinct, and in the true modern fashion, Hollow Leg has put the entire thing on Bandcamp for free listening. Since it’s Monday afternoon and I’ve got some listening time, I thought maybe you might too. Here’s the record and here’s the link where to buy it:

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VYGR Debut Due in January

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 29th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Sounds to me like this generation of hardcore kids is starting to grow up…

Massachusetts ambient-sludge masters VYGR (pronounced “Voyager”) have announced the release of their highly anticipated full-length debut, Hypersleep. The Double-LP/CD release will hit stores on Jan. 25, 2011 via Creator-Destructor Records.

The band entered Planet Z studios with acclaimed producer Zeuss (Shadows Fall, The Acacia Strain, Arsis) in Massachusetts for the production of Hypersleep. Guitarist PJ Mion states: “Working with Zeuss was a great experience for us. From the start he was on board with wanting to capture our live sound, getting everything to sound huge while avoiding the use of click tracks/sound replacement/re-amping etc. that seems to increasingly be the norm for most ‘heavy’ music these days. The end result is a heavy, spaced-out metal record that actually sounds like it was played by human beings. Coinciding with this release we’re planning for a much more active show schedule, always playing as loud as humanly possible.”

Hypersleep tracklisting:
1. Solar
2. Flares
3. Orbital Hallucinations
4. Galactic Garbage
5. –
6. The Hidden
7. Shapeshifters
8. Unmoved Mover
9. Path to the Unknown
10. Event Horizon
11. We Drift
12. A Distant Beacon

VYGR plans to support the release of Hypersleep with heavy regional touring, and a run of West Coast shows shortly after the release of the record. For all tour-dates and updates, visit

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Earth: Placating the Bureaucracy

Posted in Reviews on November 29th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Perhaps the most striking thing about Earth’s A Bureaucratic Desire for Extra-Capsular Extraction — which combines the band’s 1991 debut EP, Extra-Capsular Extraction with cuts from their 1990 demo previously available as bonus tracks from No Quarter’s 2001 reissue of 1995’s Sunn Amps and Smashed Guitars Live (you get all that?) — is that if it came across my desk today and I popped it in for review, it wouldn’t be at all out of date. I wouldn’t call it innovative, or laud it for how it will change riffy drone forever, but this kind of stuff is most definitely still being made. It goes to show that whatever the venerated Olympia, Washington, outfit get up to, they seem to be ahead of their time. Certainly they’ve continued to prove that throughout their career, from the low frequency noise of Earth 2 in 1993 to the beginning of a new era with 2005’s Hex: Or Printing in the Infernal Method. Even now, as main songwriter and guitarist Dylan Carlson prepares to enter his 21st year operating under the Earth moniker, the push is still toward innovating and refining the creative process.

I don’t doubt that it was a bureaucratic desire that led to the album’s being reissued, perhaps by Southern Lord, perhaps by Carlson or the band wanting to mark the 20th anniversary of some of this material, but whatever it is, the new visitation of Extra-Capsular Extraction finds it no less relevant for the time passed. In fact, given the trail of influence Earth has left behind them, they’re probably more relevant now than they ever were at the time. Nonetheless, the “bureaucratic desire” is also obviously a play on the two-part piece that makes up half of the original EP, “A Bureaucratic Desire for Revenge.” On both “Part 1” and “Part 2,” Earth prove they were ahead of the game entirely, evoking an atmosphere that not even Godflesh would come close to touching for some years yet. Carlson, joined in Earth at the time by bassist/percussionist Joe Preston (Melvins, High on Fire, Thrones, etc.) and bassist Dave Harwell, provides landmark riffing that’s slow enough (especially compared to most of what was coming out of their geographic region at the time) to be called drone, but still somewhat groove-based. Sabbath heads and experimental geeks would have been on it, but the grunge kids must have shit their pants.

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Frydee Yawning Man

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 26th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

You know all those other Frydee posts the past couple months where all I did was bitch about how much I didn’t want to spend the weekend doing homework? None of them even compares to this weekend. Unfortunately, that’s pretty much what I’ll be doing the whole time. To help me find some Friday inner peace after a long work week (even one that was short by a day) is this clip of Yawning Man playing on the street in France. The song is “Blue Foam” from their excellent Nomadic Pursuits record, released earlier this year.

Speaking of excellent records released this year, can you believe it’s almost December? I’ve got a month-long “best of the year” countdown that’ll be starting next Wednesday and running through to New Year’s (holidays included), so definitely stick around for that. This coming week we’ll also wrap up November’s numbers, have an interview posted with Virginia doomly upstarts Cough, and I’ll have the Kings Destroy full-length, And the Rest Will Surely Perish, for sale on Tuesday. The Roareth sold 12 of the total 50 copies in the first 24 hours. Think we can top that?

And, who knows? Maybe that Electric Wizard CD will show up and I’ll finally get to review it. I gave in and ordered a copy from All That is Heavy, which I’m reasonably certain will be here before the one I bought direct from the label, and there were a couple other goodies in there as well, so I’m sure I’ll get a Buried Treasure post out of it one way or the other.

Good fun to come. Have a great weekend and be safe — and don’t forget — Kings Destroy is for sale on Tuesday!

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