Elliott’s Keep Announce New Album Lacrimae Mundi

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

It’s been a good long while since the last time we heard from Dallas, Texas, trio Elliott’s Keep. Their third record, Nascentes Morimur (review here), arrived in 2013, and, well that was four years ago, so yeah. It was the doom metallers’ harshest offering to-date at the time, and one wonders what the intervening years will have done to their sound. It’s a relevant question, of course, because they’re recording a fourth long-player as we speak.

Okay, maybe not this second, but it’s in progress. Once again working with producer J.T. Longoria (Mercyful Fate, Absu, King Diamond, Solitude Aeturnus), once again keeping on theme in the medieval imagery of their cover art and once again holding true to their penchant for Latin album titles — Lacrimae Mundi translates, as noted below, to “tears of the world” — Elliott’s Keep seem to be signaling a sticking to form rather than any radical changes, but each of their outings has been a creative step from its predecessor and I’d expect no less this time around as well, whatever other elements may persist. The band, as you’ll recall, were formed in homage to mutual friend Glenn Riley Elliott, whose passing continues to inform their thematic and overall style.

Not sure on the exact timing of the release, but the band sent over the following so we can all be in the loop on the art and tracks. Here goes:


Elliott’s Keep – Lacrimae Mundi

Just a quick Elliott’s Keep update.

We have been recording the new album over the past few weeks and the guitar, drums and bass tracking is now complete. We will go back to Nomad Studios in a few weeks for Ken to do his vocal tracking.

The new album is titled Lacrimae Mundi (Latin for Tears of the World). We are again working with JT Longoria.

The track listing is as follows:
Carpe Noctem
The Doom of Men
Banished to Shadow
Ninestane Rig
Moments of Respite

Elliott’s Keep is:
Joel Bates – Drums
Kenneth Greene – Vocals and Bass Guitar
Jonathan Bates – Guitar


Elliott’s Keep, Nascentes Morimur (2014)

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Six Dumb Questions with Telekinetic Yeti

Posted in Six Dumb Questions on May 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

telekinetic yeti

Iowan guitarist/vocalist Alex Baumann and drummer Anthony Dreyer — who together go by Telekinetic Yeti and have the beards to prove it — stomped their way into the hearts and minds of the converted this past March with the Sump Pump Records release of Abominable (review here). Their debut album and in fact their first offering of any kind, it telegraphs lumbering intent in massive lumber and the shouts of Baumann, playing to the duo-intensity of Black Cobra on its leadoff title-track while later opting for a fuller-fuzzed groove on “Lightbearer” and jamming into more spacious terrain on “Colossus.”

A purposeful sense of variety offered tone that could bring to mind Conan just as easily as Truckfighters or fellow Midwesterners Valley of the Sun, and Baumann and Dreyer proved no less comfortable as songwriters in either context. Working with Luke Tweedy at Flat Black Studios, the pair harness a sound that is just as likely to impress with its detail as with its overarching impact; ambient transitions between songs tying them together and subtle changes in rhythm, structure and intensity go a long way in making Abominable feel like a complete album rather than an initial batch of material from a new band getting their feet under them.

This June will find Telekinetic Yeti on the road throughout the Midwest for their most extensive tour to-date, and they’ve already begun writing songs for a follow-up to Abominable, which could come together for a possible 2018 release, depending on pressing schedule, recording times, further tour plans, and any number of other variables that crop up along the way. Still, it’s in progress, so all the more reason to chase down the busy twosome and get further introduced to their ways and methods.

Baumann and Dreyer opted to answer as a collective, so please consider them speaking on behalf of each other, and please enjoy the following Six Dumb Questions:

telekinetic yeti abominable

Six Dumb Questions with Telekinetic Yeti

What’s Telekinetic Yeti’s origin story? How did you guys get together and how did the band start to take shape with the two of you? At what point did you know you wanted to remain a duo, and what was behind that decision?

Anthony and I had known each other for years from playing in some different bands years before. After that last band broke up in early 2010, Anthony had moved out west. When he moved back to the Midwest in 2014 we tried to revive the old band. When that didn’t work out with the other members we decided to see what we could do as just two people. We got together for a jam session and the first song we wrote was what ended up being the first song on our new album. We were stoked about how things were sounding so we kept with it. Once we were playing out a lot and people loved it so much just as two people, we kind of figured there was no reason to add a third person if its working so well as two.

Tell me about recording Abominable. How long were you in the studio and what was your time there like? The tones seem to vary so much between songs like “Stoned and Feathered” and “Himalayan Hymn,” between doom-thick and more rocker-fuzz. How were these captured?

We started recording in January, ironically enough during a blizzard. We recorded at Flat Black Studios which is a barn in Lone Tree, Iowa, that was converted into a really nice studio by Luke Tweedy. We were in the studio for approximately 14 days. Luke refers to it as his “recording resort,” which is accurate. We were able to sleep and shower and have everything we needed out there, which was really nice. Luke is amazing to work with. He really understands how to get a band to sound as natural yet raw as possible. Sonically each song has its own character whether that’s due to using a lot of whammy in certain songs or using specific fuzz pedals… also a lot of the songs are in different keys which sometimes responds a little differently with the amps and depending on where on the fretboard I’m playing stuff. We also used a wide array of amps to record with from different little combo amps to micing up the rigs we use live. We tried to leave no stone unturned.

How do you feel the results on Abominable represent where you want to go as a band? Are there lessons you’ll take into your next studio session, and if so, what will you be keeping in mind as you move forward from here?

As far as lessons learned, we have a better idea of how long it will take for us to record an album now. We had no idea how long it would take and initially didn’t book enough time. We ended up spending about 100 hours between recording and mixing in the studio, which is something we can plan for a little better for our next full length.

We are really happy with how Abominable turned out and feel it’s a great launching pad for us to show people what we are about. Originally when we were writing most of those songs, we were just trying to round up enough songs to play our first show. Once we had that we started focusing more on writing specific songs that we thought the album needed. Especially like “Himalayan Hymn,” we wrote that specifically as a song we wanted to end the album with. Even “Electronaut” and “Colossus,” those songs we played at our first show but they initially were much shorter songs (probably because we wrote our first set so fast) which had different endings.

We went back and added a lot of cool new parts and revamped them. We thought the songs turned out much better than they were originally. Also when we started creating layers of ambience for between songs it started to feel more like an album. As far as where we will go with our next album, we already have some new songs finished for it, which we think are a continuation of what we did before but in their own way better and different. We aren’t going to drastically change our sound, but we also try to not write the same song twice.

Where did the transitions at the ends of the songs come from and what do you feel they add to Abominable overall?

We’ve always been inspired by concept albums, whether that’s albums by the Mars Volta, or a band like Rosetta. We’ve always liked music that had more drama and depth to it, we feel like transitions in between songs can make an album feel deeper and more interesting. We feel like bands that add extra layers in between songs leaves you hearing something new every time you listen to it, which adds to replay value. Also when you listen to records like that, you can listen to the album from front to back and it feels more like an experience then just a collection of songs.

Will you tour to support the album?

Yes. We did a handful of Midwest dates as our album release, and this June we are going out for 19 days touring the Rust Belt. Here are those dates:

June 14 Dubuque IA  @ The Smokestack
June 15  Dekalb IL  @ The House Cafe
June 16 Grand Rapids MI @ The Workshop
June 17 Kalamazoo MI @ Shakespears
June 18 Wyandotte MI  @ The Rockery
June 19 Toledo OH @ The Ottawa Tavern
June 20 Cleveland OH @ Mahall’s
June 21 Kent OH @ The Stone Tavern
June 22 Pittsburgh PA @ Mr Roboto
June 23 Altoona PA @ Mcgarveys
June 24 Philadelphia PA @ Pharmacy
June 25 Baltimore MD @ The Depot
June 26 Morgantown WV @ 123 Pleasant St
June 27 Columbus OH @ No Culture (House)
June 28 Fort Wayne IN @ The Brass Rail
June 29 Indianapolis IN @ Kuma’s Corner
June 30 Joliet IL @ Drunken Donut
July 1 Peoria IL @ Rail II
July 2 Rock Island IL @ The Arena

We are also playing the Stoned Meadow of Doom Fest in Omaha on Friday, Sept. 29, and are doing a West Coast tour this Fall, which starts in September and ends around the second week of November.

Any other plans or closing words you want to mention?

Thanks to The Obelisk for doing this interview. We look forward to hopefully meeting many of you on the road this year!

Telekinetic Yeti, Abominable (2017)

Telekinetic Yeti on Thee Facebooks

Telekinetic Yeti on Bandcamp

Sump Pump Records

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Landing Announce Tour Dates & Taeppe EP

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan


Connecticut heavy psych drifters Landing are heading out at the end of June and into July for a tour that will take them as far west as Utah and all the way down to Atlanta in a matter of about two weeks’ time. The three-piece issued the full-length Third Sight (review here) last year through respected purveyor El Paraiso Records, and as they make ready to hit the road they’ll do so with a new, limited, tour-exclusive cassette in tow.

Titled Taeppe and presumably pronounced “tape,” the new offering will be a one-time pressing and only available at gigs, so if you don’t happen to make it out to a show, I guess tough luck, though maybe if we start a letter-writing campaign or something they’ll put a couple up on Bandcamp. They’ve got preorders up now ahead of an official June 27 release with a streaming track — also called “Tape” — that you can check out at the bottom of this post, beneath the tour announcement and some more PR-wire-type background.

Dig it:

landing tour

We’re hitting the road!

To coincide with the tour, we’re releasing a limited edition cassette EP titled “Taeppe” that will only be available at the shows. Pre-order link here: https://landing.bandcamp.com/album/taeppe-ep

June 27- Red Cross House, Northampton, MA
June 28- This Ain’t Hollywood, Hamilton, ON
June 29- UFO Factory, Detroit, MI
June 30- State Street, Indianapolis, IN
July 1- Foam, St. Louis, MO
July 2- Kitty Kat Club, Minneapolis, MN
July 3- Vaudeville Mews, Des Moines, IA
July 5- Diabolical Records, SLC, UT
July 8- Cheer Up Charlie’s, Austin, TX
July 9- Gasa Gasa, New Orleans, LA
July 10- 529, Atlanta, GA
July 11- Neptune’s, Raleigh, NC
July 12- TBA, Lynchburg, VA

Hope to see you out there!!


Connecticut’s Landing have specialized in a mild and rural kind of psychedelia over the course of nearly two decades. Recent releases have seen them closer to post-punk and shoegaze territory than ever, but Third Sight – recorded specifically for El Paraiso Records’ Impetus series – builds on the hallucinatory soundscapes of the band’s earliest days.

And despite releasing one brilliant album after another the band remains appalingly under-appreciated. Perhaps because the tryyps Landing take are rooted in self-exploration. As trends in krautrock, drone, folk, and psychedelia ebb and flow, Landing remain unfazed. The door to Landing’s world is open, but there isn’t a flashing neon sign above it. These guys are far removed from the hustle and bustle of geographic cultural bubbles, both physically and spiritually.

Landing lineup for Taeppe EP:
Adrienne Snow • Vocals
Daron Gardner • Bass/Drones
Aaron Snow • Guitar/Synth/Drums/Bass/Vocals
Kryssi Battalene • Guitar on Side A
John Miller • Drums on “Together”


Landing, Taeppe (2017)

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Yagow Post Video for “Time to Get Rid of It”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan


Grainy VHS sci-fi footage, rocket boosters at full thrust, shots of space in all its practical-effects vastness mixed in with astronauts in various stages of trial and experimentation? Yup, that sounds about right for the kind of trippery Yagow proffer in the five-minute “Time to Get Rid of It.” The song comes from the German trio’s upcoming self-titled debut (review here), which is out June 16 on Crazysane Records, and the found material that makes up the clip for “Time to Get Rid of It” coalesces fluidly around the molten, cosmos-gazing rhythm of the track itself, resulting in a multi-sensory package that’s easy to digest and seems only to lead the listener from chill to chill over the course of its relatively brief but hypnotic five minutes.

And that’s pretty much the story of the thing. One of the major strengths of Yagow‘s Yagow is the firm confidence with which it advises those who’d take it on to strap themselves in and get ready for the outward ride that is about to and in fact does ensue. That kind of command is pretty rare in groups with such a lysergic focus, but Yagow treat it almost as an afterthought, and as they move forward one will be interested to hear how the underlying shuffle of a track like “Time to Get Rid of It” and its crafted hook wind up being treated as a stage in the development of the band. That is to say, I look forward to finding out in the longer term how nascent Yagow is as an album and where the trio might go in terms of sound and aesthetic in following it up.

But they should probably release it first. Once again, June 16 is the date for that, so keep an eye out. And while you’ve got your eye out, you can dig into the “Time to Get Rid of It” video below.

Please enjoy:

Yagow, “Time to Get Rid of It” official video

Video by Daniel Fuchs & Manuel Wesely

YAGOW is a psych-space-rock trio based in Saarbruecken, Germany. Loud guitars, drones and ghost-like vocals build up other-wordly soundscapes reminiscent of 70s avantgarde acts and the shoegazing sounds of the past decades.

Pressing Info:
Limited to 300 copies on black 12″ vinyl
Screenprinted PVC overbag (kinegram effect)
Neon-printed LP cover

Yagow is:
Marc Schönwald: Drums, Percussion
Kai Peifer: Bass on ‘non-contractual’
Jan Werner: Vocals, Guitars, Drones
Axel Rothhaar: Bass

Yagow on Thee Facebooks

Yagow website

Yagow preorder at Crazysane Records

Crazysane Records on Thee Facebooks

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SonicBlast Moledo 2017: Colour Haze, Acid King, Black Bombaim & Bar de Monjas Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan


If you had a two-band festival, and those two bands were Colour Haze and Acid King — and that’s it — no one else — I’d still call it an awesome time. Accordingly, kudos to SonicBlast Moledo 2017 for signing up both acts and setting my mind immediately adrift on a daydreaming course of Portuguese wonders that could be had. Of course, Colour Haze and Acid King aren’t the only bands playing — see also Elder, Sasquatch, The Machine, Monolord, Death Alley, Blaak Heat, Orange Goblin, Kadavar, and so on — but yeah, that’s a special couple days right there when you can get those groups together. “Kudos” is probably an understatement.

The PR wire has the latest:

sonicblast moledo 2017 colour haze

SonicBlast Moledo 2017 | Haze of acid in sight!

With the dates settled for August 11th and 12th, the seventh edition of SonicBlast Moledo closes the two-day lineup with Colour Haze, Acid King, Black Bombaim, Stone Dead, It Was the Elf, Ana Paris and Bar de Monjas !

They’ll be joining the previously confirmed Orange Goblin, Kadavar, Elder, Sasquatch, Kikagaku Moyo/?????, Dead Witches, Monolord, The Machine, Yuri Gagarin, The Well, Death Alley, Blaak Heat, Toxic Shock, Löbo, Vinnum Sabbathi and Holy Mushroom!

Now heading to its seventh edition, the festival located at the small beach village of Moledo, North of Portugal, includes two stages (the smaller one with a pool), free camping (to ticket holders) right by the beach and an amazing ambient for any heavy rock, psych, doom or stoner fan.

Colour Haze

With more than twenty years on the road, almost twenty studio records and a relentless will to keep going, it’s more than comprehensible that Colour Haze are easily considered one of the highest exponents within the European Psychedelic Stoner culture. On their course, they count with innumerable presences throughout all Europe and also on USA, although, they never had the chance to debut on Lusitanian territory. Following the release of their newest full-length album “In Her Garden”, the German trio embraces themselves to descend upon Portuguese lands for the first time ever in their career, received with all the enthusiasm for this seventh edition of SonicBlast Moledo.

Acid King

Formed by the charismatic Lori S. during the year of 1993, Acid King are, without any doubt, one of the classic acts of the Stoner Doom’s genre. Their intense and powerful sound, turn them into one of the most influential band within this musical circuit, only having passed through Portugal once. On 2017, they make their debut on Moledo and we can only wait for a triumphant presence.

Bar de Monjas

The Mexican / German duo Bar de Monjas promises a thunderous discharge of agitated rhythms, always heavy and filled with fuzz. On the road since 2010, they already count with one full-length studio record, two EP’s and an amazing split, released in collaboration with the already confirmed Vinnum Sabbathi.

Black Bombaim

After being obliged to cancel their presence at the last edition, Black Bombaim are ready to return to Moledo to spread their contagious psychotropic Rock.

We also receive the fresh Rock n Roll of Stone Dead, as well as the energetic Stoner Metal of It was the Elf and the return of Ana Parisw ith their characteristic Stoner Rock force.

Tickets Price:
2nd pre-sale : 42€ | From 01/03/17 to 30/06/17
3rd pre-sale : 48€ | From 01/07/17 to 31/07/17
4th pre-sale: 55€ | From 01/08/17 to the event’s final


Colour Haze, In Her Garden (2017)

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Shooting Guns to Release Flavour Country Aug. 11 on RidingEasy

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 30th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Canadian leftfield psych rockers Shooting Guns have announced an Aug. 11 release date for their third album, Flavour Country, through venerable Californian imprint RidingEasy Records. Last heard from with their 2015 split with Zaum, Himalaya to Mesopotamia (review here), the six-piece last issued a long-player in 2013’s Brotherhood of the Ram, which was the follow-up to 2011’s Born to Deal in Magic: 1952-1976, but as one will they’ve had a slew of shorter offerings out along the way. Still, they’re about due, and preorders should start for Flavour Country any day now, since RidingEasy is nothing if not on top of that kind of whathaveyou. Keep an eye out.

Details are pretty slim on the album itself in terms of tracks, audio, etc., but there’s art and some preliminary background to go on. Wouldn’t you know, here it is:


Shooting Guns – Flavour Country

Our 3rd studio album is coming out Aug 11th on RidingEasy Records! Recorded at Pre-Rock Records HQ, “Flavour Country” takes the SG sound to a lot of new places with pre-sales/previews coming next week!!

Shooting Guns provide the perfect soundtrack for the morning after the apocalypse, when you are sitting in the rubble of your home in a bathrobe and think, ‘What should I do now?’ and end up zoning out for hours in a psychedelic trance instead of making a survival plan. Bad move on your part, because you are probably going to die. Shooting Guns are hard at work fortifying the heavy end of the psychedelic spectrum. Hailing from the subarctic wasteland of Saskatoon, SK, they haunt the foggy moor between Sabbath-styled doom riffery and heavy pulse-riding kraut-rock.

Their debut LP, Born To Deal In Magic: 1952-1976, was nominated for the Polaris Prize in 2012 and the 2nd LP, Brotherhood of the Ram, was released in Oct 2013.

Shooting Guns is:
Jay Loos
Jim Ginther
Toby Bond
Zach Low
Brennan Barclay


Shooting Guns, Himalaya to Mesopotamia split with Zaum (2015)

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Drug Honkey Post Lyric Video for “Pool of Failure”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 30th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

drug honkey

If you haven’t yet heard it, the new album from Chicago’s Drug Honkey contains some of the most thoroughly fucked-sounding audio you’re likely to encounter in 2017. I mean it. Not only is Cloak of Skies (review here) unremitting in its bleakness, but the sheer aural harshness the band conveys with their industrialized sludge is like almost nothing else out there. With a background in extreme metal, they bring that intensity to their first outing since 2013’s Ghost in the Fire (review here), and the aggressive, malevolent place they wind up with the record is as brutal in its atmospheric purpose as in its raw assault factor. By the time it’s over, one feels as though they’ve earned this sonic punishment, even if one isn’t entirely sure what it is they’re supposed to feel so guilty for.

A noteworthy guest remix by Justin Broadrick has helped get the word out some about what Drug Honkey are doing, and sure enough Godflesh are a central influence or at very least a starting point when it comes to trying to understand where Cloak of Skies is coming from, but the real impact of the album comes from its deranged vibe and opaque violence. As the leadoff track, “Pool of Failure” offers the first signal of this mission and gets it underway in terrifyingly immersive form. Like much of what follows throughout Cloak of Skies, it is a nightmarish pulse peppered with impressionist lyrics, expressive and evocative half-thoughts that lead the listener downward on a course that will only continue in that direction.

Do you get the fucking point yet that Drug Honkey are basically out to wreck consciousness? Good. They’ve got a new video for “Pool of Failure” posted now with even more nightmare-style imagery, and I’d hate for you to go into such a thing unprepared to have your day melted by the song or the clip’s depressive disaffection. You have, as the saying goes, been warned.

Dig it:

Drug Honkey, “Pool of Failure” lyric video

Chicago-based industrial doom lords DRUG HONKEY have premiered their macabre new video for ‘Pool of Failure.’

Recorded by the band themselves at SOS Studio in Chicago and Everflow Studios in Berwyn, IL, Cloak of Skies boasts seven tracks, including a remix by the legendary Justin K. Broadrick (Godflesh, Jesu) and a guest saxophone feature from Bruce Lamont (Yazuka, Corrections House, Brain Tentacles). Cover art was hand-painted by renowned artist Paulo Girardi (Inquisition, Power Trip).

Paul Gillis (Honkey Head) – Vocals/Synths/Samples/FX
Gabe Grosso (Hobbs) – Guitars
Ian Brown (Brown Honkey) – Bass
Adam Smith (BH Honkey) – Drums

Cloak of Skies is currently available for purchase (vinyl, CD, digital) at this location: http://drughonkey.bandcamp.com

Drug Honkey on Bandcamp

Drug Honkey on Thee Facebooks

Transcending Obscurity website

Transcending Obscurity Records on Thee Facebooks

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Dead Heavens to Release Whatever Witch You Are June 16; Northeast Tour Dates Announced

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 30th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

dead heavens

New York-based Dead Heavens will issue their debut long-player June 16 via Dine Alone Records. Titled Whatever Witch You Are, the album will be supported by a run of Northeastern tour dates around the release date, and it gets a preview in the form of streaming track “Adderall Highway,” which toes the line between heavy indie, desert push and psychedelic rock while still managing to toss out a hook fervent enough to pull one in on first listen. The band, whose pedigree is formidable and detailed below, have their roots in more aggressive fare, but dig back further into classic rock for influences, and I guess when you mash all that stuff together with some pretty clear willful direction-taking, this is what you get. Won’t hear me complain.

The PR wire brings copious details, and you can hear the audio of “Adderall Highway” at the bottom of this post. Whatever Witch You Are is up for preorder now, as the following affirms:


Dead Heavens (Quicksand, Cults, White Zombie) Release Song Today + New Album + Tour Dates Added

New Album Whatever Witch You Are Out June 16

East Coast Tour Starts June 14

New York City’s Dead Heavens, the psych-rock project of guitarist and frontman Walter Schreifels (Vanishing Life, Gorilla Biscuits, Rival Schools, Quicksand, and more), Paul Kostabi (Youth Gone Mad, White Zombie, Psychotica), Drew Thomas (Youth of Today, Bold, Into Another), and Nathan Aguilar (Cults), have released their song “Adderall Highway.”. The song appears on their forthcoming album Whatever Witch You Are, out June 16 on Dine Alone Records. Pre-order the album here.

Walter Schreifels talks about the inspiration behind the song: “Adderall Highway was born somewhere between Düsseldorf and Salzburg at the speed of 115-120mph. We were on our first European tour and taking advantage of Germany’s hyper-efficient autobahn system to make up some lost time between shows. As we watched the idyllic German countryside whirr by our windows the Riff to Adderall Highway stirred in our very souls.”

Whatever Witch You Are, their first full-length, plays effortlessly as a new-classic blues rock album— a new-millennium Fresh Cream or Let it Bleed — only with sharp-angular sounds, noticeably psyche inflections, and melodies that seem wrought out of rebar: strong, pared down, and purposeful at every point. If anything, their musical origins have permitted Dead Heavens to approach blues and psyche rock unnostalgically, arriving at an audibly honest sound, stripped of any of the tassels or affectation. The drums hit heavy. The guitars hit heavy. Yet hovering above them both is always Schreifels’ sandier vocals, urging us on through life’s endless freakishness and frustrations.

“Many of these songs are love songs,” Schreifels explains, “ Basic Cable is about love but a modern love that’s lost its way— when couples are stuck at home, binge-watching or glued to their phones, absently doing the dishes, unsatisfied until they finally realize that what they really need is to just go outside. This song is for when they finally get out there.” The pent-energy of this opening single explodes and never lets up, fueling quasi-Krautrock stretches in Goldtooth or Bad Luck Child, coasters like Silver Sea or Experience, or the pounding rock of Adderall Highway and Away from the Speed. Following a burst of earlier singles like History in my Hands and Feel Low, this album is made for One Big Listen, and its lone rest stop, The Moon Will Listen (But Not the Sun), begins reflectively but shifts into full rollick by its second half.

Dead Heavens first coalesced during a solo tour for Schreifels, in 2013, with Thomas and Aguilar as backing band. Swapping and trading music for road listening— Cream, My Bloody Valentine, White Fence— together the three distilled the musical mood that would soon characterize Dead Heavens. Upon returning to New York, Aguilar reacquainted Thomas and Schreifels with musician, painter, and sound engineer Paul Kostabi, who felicitously still owned the reel-to-reel on which Schreifels had recorded Gorilla Biscuits’ Start Today in 1989, and— in another claim to fame— had coined the title of Guns N’ Roses Use Your Illusion. Their sympathies obvious, then, they leapt into recording at Kostabi’s Thunderdome Studios, and welcomed on Kostabi as a second lead guitar. A shotgun home studio set in the marshes of Piermont, New York, Thunderdome also guarded a trove of 70’s recording reels from Black Sabbath, The James Gang, and Jimi Hendrix— reels that played between takes and liberally infused the cauldron with an inspiringly darker magic.

But as the title tells you, Whatever Witch You Are enjoins us to radically accept this darker magic, “in the sense of accepting a strong, strange, powerful woman who freaks out people precisely for all her powers,” Schreifels says, “and not just in love, but acceptance in a modern world that can often isolate us, and make us feel like freaks. For the full 36 minutes of this record, we want people to be able to embrace this freakishness.” Even when our world’s havoc-tossed, and our heavens dead, the lifers out there will always shrug it off and ready themselves for the strange new era.

Dead Heavens Tour Dates
6/14 – New Haven, CT – BAR – New Haven
6/15 – Newport, RI – The Parlor
6/16 – Brooklyn, NY – Union Pool
6/17 – Garwood, NJ – Crossroads
6/18 – Washington, DC – DC9 Nightclub
6/19 – Philadelphia, PA – Kung Fu Necktie


Dead Heavens, “Adderall Highway”

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