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At a Glance: Jimi Hendrix, People, Hell and Angels

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The rightful position when it comes to a disc like Jimi Hendrix‘s People, Hell and Angels (they used to call them “catalog releases,” but there’s probably a new word for it now because I’m old and there’s a new word for everything) is almost invariably one of disdain. As much albums as this, or Sony […]

At a Glance: Troubled Horse, Step In

Friday, December 21st, 2012

After making a splash at Roadburn 2010 on the strength of their “Bring My Horses Home” single and after about a decade of writing material and playing shows, Sweden-based ’70S aficionados Troubled Horse have made their full-length debut in the form of Step In, on Rise Above/Metal Blade. The album has already met with a […]

At a Glance: Switchblade, Switchblade [2012]

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Undeterred by the departure of bassist/vocalist Anders Steen after the release of their fifth album in 2009, Stockholm-based drone metallers Switchblade have pressed on as the duo of guitarist Johan Folkesson and drummer Tim Bertilsson, adopting the motto “less is more” and using the lack of a permanent third party to their advantage on the […]

At a Glance: Kowloon Walled City, Container Ships

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

The only thing really subtle about Kowloon Walled City‘s Container Ships is how subtle it is. The tiny bits of melody that makes their way into the guitars of Scott Evans and Jon Howell, or the surprising effect the record — their second behind 2009’s Gambling on the Richter Scale and label debut on Brutal Panda […]

At a Glance: Golden Void, Golden Void

Tuesday, November 20th, 2012

Were it not for the fact that Golden Void are fronted by guitarist Isaiah Mitchell — also of Earthless, whose name already lingers with an underappreciated mystique despite the fact that they’re still touring — their self-titled Thrill Jockey debut (available on “baby poop yellow” vinyl) would probably just be another excellent showing of organic heavy […]

At a Glance: Six Organs of Admittance, Ascent

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Usually you don’t think of Six Organs of Admittance – the syllabically and emotionally weighted psych/folk incarnation of Comets on Fire guitarist Ben Chasny — as music in which the listening experience is relative to volume. Go figure that after nigh on 15 years and more headphone-ready contemplations than I think anyone can reasonably be […]

At a Glance: Drcarlsonalbion, La Strega and the Cunning Man in the Smoke Latitudes Session

Friday, November 9th, 2012

Even if you went into listening to Drcarlsonalbion‘s La Strega and the Cunning Man in the Smoke with no idea that it was Dylan Carlson of Earth behind it, you’d probably be tipped off within 10 seconds of the opening title-track. The long-running drone forebear’s style is so distinct, his sleepy minimalism so recognizable as […]

At a Glance: Tweak Bird, Undercover Crops

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Tweak Bird‘s Undercover Crops EP (Volcom) is about as modern as you get without actually being from the future. Like the L.A.-by-way-of-Illinois brotherly two-piece’s last outing — a 2010 self-titled full-length debut — Undercover Crops pairs fuzzed-out baritone guitar and percussive crash with classic pop harmonies, resulting in a friendly maelstrom much bolstered by the […]

At a Glance: Pig Destroyer, Book Burner

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Pivotal grindcore foursome Pig Destroyer released their last album, Phantom Limb, in 2007. Following the troubling masterpiece that was 2004’s Terrifyer, the full-length showed growth in the increased attention to atmosphere thanks to adding noise/sample specialist Blake Harrison to the lineup alongside founders Scott Hull (guitar; also of Agoraphobic Nosebleed) and vocalist J.R. Hayes and […]

At a Glance: Wovenhand, The Laughing Stalk

Friday, October 12th, 2012

I didn’t hear immediately about Wovenhand‘s The Laughing Stalk upon its digital release on Sept. 11, but I’ve spent a fair amount of time with it since, the David Eugene Edwards-led Colorado progressive/neo-folk outfit continuing to seek the very kind of aural fullness that Edwards‘ prior outfit, 16 Horsepower, seemed so bent on eschewing. The […]

At a Glance: The Cosmic Dead, The Exalted King

Friday, October 5th, 2012

Listen close enough to the 34-minute opening title track of The Cosmic Dead‘s The Exalted King and I’m pretty sure you can hear the universe expand. Have balls, will trip. The Glasgow-based foursome recorded the tape (yes, tape, released by Dub Ditch Picnic) in their rehearsal space, and its three tracks — “The Exalted King” […]

At a Glance: Witchcraft, Legend

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

It makes a weird kind of sense. It’s been five years since Witchcraft released their third album, The Alchemist, and the long-awaited follow-up — dubbed Legend – finds them making their debut on Nuclear Blast and finds guitarist/vocalist Magnus Pelander surrounded by an almost entirely different band. Now a double-guitar five-piece, Witchcraft‘s Legend marks the […]

At a Glance: Down, Down IV Part One: The Purple EP

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Down IV Part One: The Purple EP is a pretty complex title for a band who, when they released their first album in 1995, couldn’t be bothered to say the entire phrase “New Orleans.” The project seems to be that over the next year, Down — the supergroup of (do I even need to list […]

At a Glance: Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell, Don’t Hear it… Fear it!

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

After a lauded 7″ and much YouTube embedding leading to retro-rock hyperbole, the Britisher-than-thou trio Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell emerge with their cheekily-titled Rise Above (Metal Blade in the States) debut full-length, Don’t Hear it… Fear it! Flourishes of blown-out analog psychedelia persist, and their vintage aesthetique runs (mop-)top to (bell-)bottom, but whether it’s the […]