King Buffalo Announce Nov. Tour Dates

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 8th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

king buffalo

I know it’s not like King Buffalo have been sitting on their collective ass. The Rochester three-piece released a (gorgeous) split with Sweden’s Lé Betre on STB Records earlier this year (review here), took part in Magnetic Eye Records‘s Electric Ladyland [Redux] tribute to Jimi Hendrix (review here) and even found time to release their original 2013 demo (review here) as a limited flexi 7″, all in 2015. Nonetheless, I remain singularly impatient for the arrival of their debut full-length.

As of their most recent update on the subject — or at very least the most recent one I could find, which was August — they had most of the thing done, five of seven songs or some such, and were working toward finishing the rest. Could very well be that the record is done and that their upcoming tour next month, which they’ve dubbed the “Orion Tour 2015,” is named because Orion will be the title of the album. Do I know that? Nope. Maybe they just drew constellations out of a hat, or maybe it’s because Orion’s belt has three stars and there are three of them. Could be anything. I’m glad to see they’re busy, but make no mistake, it’s the album I’m waiting for.

In the interim, I was saying to The Patient Mrs. just the other day that I wanted to get back up to Portland, Maine, sometime soon. Maybe a King Buffalo show is just the occasion. Still wouldn’t be as far as I drove last time I saw them.

Dates follow:

king buffalo orion tour

Tour is fast approaching friends. We are gonna be playing with a lot of awesome bands. Check out for full details and buy some merch so we have some gas money for the van. See ya soon.

10/16 Stroundsburg, PA – The Living Room w/ King Dead
11/6 Kingston, NY – The Anchor w/ Geezer
11/7 Syracuse, NY – Westcott Ballroom w/ Outsideinside
11/11 Pittsburgh, PA – Gooskis
11/12 Columbus, OH – Ace of Cups w/ Mount Carmel
11/13 Nashville, TN – The Crying Wolf
11/14 Atlanta, GA – Bar 529
11/15 Winston-Salem, NC – The Garage
11/16 Raleigh, NC – Slim’s Downtown w/ Pinkish Black
11/17 Richmond, VA – Strange Matter w/ Book of Wyrms
11/18 Philadelphia, PA – Ortilebs Lounge w/ Bonfires and Meddlesome Meddlesome Meddlesome Bells
11/19 Newport, RI – The Parlor
11/20 Revere, MA – Sammy’s Patio
11/21 Portland, ME – Geno’s Rock Club
12/12 Rochester, NY – Bug Jar w/ All Them Witches and New Madrid

Dan Reynolds – Bass & Lights
Scott Donaldson – Drums & Backing Vocals
Sean McVay – Guitar & Lead Vocals

King Buffalo, STB Records Split (2015)

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Linear North Premiere “Spectrum Eyes” from Mine is Yesterday, I Know Tomorrow

Posted in audiObelisk on October 8th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

linear north

This weekend, Upstate New York psych rockers Linear North will mark the release of their debut album, Mine is Yesterday, I Know Tomorrow, which is out on cassette via King Pizza Records. The trio are set to play two shows — in Brooklyn, where the label is based, and Albany, where they’re based — as a celebration with like-minded labelmates Sun Voyager, and the tape is indeed something worth celebrating, following a 2012 demo and 2013 digital EP, called Singles, both of which have tracks resurfaced into the 32-minute/six-track full-length. An immediately spacious vibe on the seven-minute longest and opening cut (immediate points) “13 Year Sugar Maple” casts an echoing, sunshiny vibe, and as the record plays out, shifting into the shorter, more garage-minded “Into the Light” and through its remaining cuts, the groovy post-this-and-that vibes only grow more expansive.

Comprised of guitarist/vocalist Bob Forget, bassist Shane Williams and drummer Ryan Render, Linear North offer some of their most languid dreaminess on “Mountains,” which opened the EP, ends side one of the tape and successfully executes a subtle build in the guitar and bass while maintaining a liquid wash, patient groove, and in the drums, a linear north mine is yesterday i know tomorrowsteady roll that eases smoothly into the peak, recedes, and rises again to finish out. “Spectrum Eyes,” which starts out side two, is more straight-ahead weighted in its initial push, but has its shoegazing feel as well, Williams‘ bass pushing it into highlight territory beneath Forget‘s reverb-soaked croon. Though “Spectrum Eyes” is riffier, I think “Rapture” might have it beat for the sheer buzz factor, a spaced-out grunge taking hold and making a primarily melodic impact nonetheless by the end of it, swirling all the while.

That leaves just “Weigh,” with its low-end foundation and swinging, tambourine-inclusive rhythm, to finish out. Three years have passed since it was included on their first demo, but it makes a fitting closer for Mine is Yesterday, I Know Tomorrow, teasing an explosion in its pulsating verses while winding up on an entirely more fluid trip. Yeah, it picks up and goes nuts at the end, but that’s only half the point, and even that’s more of a morphing shift than sudden leap from quiet to loud. Pacing of transition would seem to be a specialty in what I guess one would still rightly call Linear North‘s early days.

I think you can get a sense of that even from the heavier thrust of “Spectrum Eyes,” which you can hear on the player below. I think Linear North might have the whole record on Bandcamp as well, so check there if you haven’t, but either way, I’m glad to be able to feature the track as a sampler for anyone who feels like getting lost in it.

Show info under the player. Enjoy:

October 9th “Mine is Yesterday, I Know Tomorrow” will be available on Cassette and Download courtesy of King Pizza Records. We’ll be celebrating all weekend long in Brooklyn and Albany. In the meantime check out our bandcamp and all the other awesomeness that comes from King Pizza Records!

October 9th and 10th are just around the corner. We’re looking forward to playing in Brooklyn and Albany again. The Albany show at the Fuze Box will be our 100th gig!

We also have our first show of November on Friday the 6th at The Anchor in Kingston with Geezer, Shadow Witch and King Buffalo. More dates to come!

Friday October 9th – Brooklyn, NY – Don Pedro’s w/ Sun Voyager and Wet Socks
Saturday October 10th – Albany, NY – Fuze Box w/ Sun Voyager & Mod fiction

Linear North website

Linear North on Thee Facebooks

Linear North on Bandcamp

King Pizza Records

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Darsombra Complete “Three-Legged Monster” Tour

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 8th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

Well, I posted late last year when Baltimore’s audio/visual drone outfit Darsombra decided they were going to tour in 109 different cities throughout the US in 2015 and made that announcement public, so now that they’ve actually gone and done such a thing, it seems only fair to mark the fact that they made it through to the other side. Kudos to the band — guitarist Brian Daniloski and videographer/keyboardist/hitter-of-gong Ann Everton — on the ambitious and comprehensive run. They’re not the first act ever to play 100 shows in a year, but to my knowledge they did so without ever overlapping locale, starting out in Washington D.C. and ending in Baltimore and hitting a whole bunch of everywhere else in between Feb. and the start of this month.

What’s next? A new album, naturally. Daniloski posted the following update about their plans:

darsombra (Photo by Brandon Walker)

Hello everyone!

Well. . . we did it! Darsombra played over one hundred cities and towns in the United States and Canada this year (111 to be exact). From eating sapote in Miami to drinking kombucha in Asheville; from bathing in a park fountain in New Orleans to watching unexplained phenomena in Marfa, Texas; from meditating at a monastery in northern California to blazing our way across the salt flats of Utah; from cutting hair in a park in Queens, to cooking breakfast with the mountains in Yellowstone; from jamming in a cave in Rapid City to playing in a storage unit in Memphis. . . we have had an incredible, expansive, transformative journey absorbing so much of what the lower 48 (plus Montreal and Toronto!) has to offer.

So what’s next for Darsombra? Are we going to tour as extensively next year? We plan on finishing a new album, with new video work. . . and then who knows? We are open to opportunities. So if you want us, let us know! We will come to you.

Much love and gratitude to all!

Darsombra, Climax Community (2012)

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Crippled Black Phoenix Sign to Season of Mist; New EP Due Nov. 27

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 8th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

crippled black phoenix

UK (or mostly UK, anyhow) purveyors of perpetual intrigue Crippled Black Phoenix have signed to Season of Mist and will release a new EP, New Dark Age, on Nov. 27. Universally awesome news. Crippled Black Phoenix, whose early work remains the non-doom stuff of doomers’ daydreams, are an excellent fit for Season of Mist‘s varied roster — one can just as easily imagine them on a label-package tour with Kylesa as with Sólstafir — and the band are sure to be well-served by Season of Mist in terms of getting their music to the ears it should be in. Very cool pairing, very stoked to hear what Crippled Black Phoenix do with and after the forthcoming New Dark Age.

The PR wire has the art for the new EP, which rules, and word of a track premiere, the signing, and the release:

crippled black phoenix new dark age ep

CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX sign to Season of Mist, stream new track “Spider Island”

Season of Mist are proud to announce the signing of the international dark rock collective CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX. Founded by multi-instrumentalist Justin Greaves, the inimitable CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX have earned a large cult following on the backs of their extensive catalog.

Regarding the signing, Greaves comments:

“CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX are lighting lanterns and scaling the highest peak in celebration of signing with Seasons of Mist. For too long we have been placed in situations where we did not quite fit, but now we feel like we found a more understanding home, a home where people care about the end result and do not compromise. This marks a bright, creative and equally dangerous future for the band and CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX are very happy with our new partnership.”

To celebrate the new signing and a newly announced European tour, CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX are releasing a new EP titled ‘New Dark Age EP.’. The EP will be released worldwide later this year on November 27. Pre-orders are available at the Season of Mist E-Shop.

The album artwork and track list for ‘New Dark Age EP.’ can be found below:

Track listing:
1. Spider Island
2. New Dark Age
3. Echoes PT. 1 (Pink Floyd cover)
4. Echoes PT. 2 (Pink Floyd cover)

Regarding the track, “Spider Island”, Greaves comments:

‘Our ‘New Dark Age’ tour EP represents a new chapter in the CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX history. I feel like it is time to be truly free of industry and personal bullshit. It also connects what we have gone through as a band with what is going on in the big wide world. It really feels as if we are living in a new ‘dark age’. Religious and political oppression, the population being fed constant untruths – all of this reminds me of the priests in the middle ages telling folk about dog-headed monsters living in the woods, but if you repent and join the church, they will protect you. The song ‘Spider Island’ is more personal. There I mentally put all the bad people… recently there have been a few people who need to go to Spider Island and live a life of torture along with all the other scumbags, who cling to power in the world.”

CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX have also recently announced an extensive European tour this fall. The “New Dark Age Winter Tour 2015 A.D.” tour, which kicks off in Sheffield, UK on Nov. 23 sees the band travel across 13 different countries before concluding in mid-December. A full list of confirmed tour dates can be found below:

Nov. 23 Sheffield (UK) @ Corporation
Nov. 24 Glasgow (UK) @ Audio
Nov. 25 Bristol (UK) @ The Fleece
Nov. 26 London (UK) @ The Dome
Nov. 27 Dortmund (DE) @ Leafmeal Festival
Nov. 28 Dresden (DE) @ Beatpol
Nov. 29 Poznan (PL) @ Blue Note Club
Nov. 30 Warszawa (PL) @ Progresja
Dec. 1 Kosice (SK) @ Kasárne
Dec. 3 Bucharest (RO) @ Fabrica
Dec. 4 Timisoara (RO) @ Daos CLub
Dec. 5 Wien (AT) @ Chelsea
Dec. 6 Budapest (HU) @ Dürer Kert
Dec. 7 Ljubljana (SI) @ Kino Siska
Dec. 8 Pratteln (CH) @ MiniZ7
Dec. 9 München (DE) @ Strom
Dec. 10 Weinheim (DE) @ Cafe Central
Dec. 11 Uden (NL) @ De Pul
Dec. 12 Maastricht (NL) @ Muziekgieterij
Dec. 13 Hamburg (DE) @ Knust
Dec. 14 København (DK) @ Vega
Dec. 15 Göteborg (SE) @ Sticky Fingers
Dec. 16 Oslo (NO) @ John Dee
Dec. 17 Stockholm (SE) @ Debaser Strand

Crippled Black Phoenix, “Hold On” live in Germany, 2015

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Black Shape of Nexus Finish Recording New Album Carrier

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 7th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

Last time we heard from German sludge-slammers Black Shape of Nexus, they were in the studio working on their as-yet-untitled next album. Well, that album, titled Carrier, is finished, has been mixed and is set for an early-2016 release through Exile on Mainstream, the same label that issued their 2012 full-length, Negative Black (streamed here). Where that leaves the EP that the band talked about having out before the end of the year, I don’t know. I’d guess nixed, but one can never be too sure when a surprise is in store. The PR wire doesn’t mention it.

The PR wire does mention a bunch of other stuff, though, including that the Hellhammer cover originally intended for a Fucking Kill Records tribute will now be on the album proper:

black shape of nexus

BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS: German Outfit Finishes Recording Of Miserable Fourth Studio Full-Length

Vile, German sludge/doom kingpins, BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS, have just finished recording and mixing of their fourth full-length studio album. The beast will be called Carrier, and is more than fifty minutes long, boasting six massive tracks including a Hellhammer cover. The record is currently being mastered by the uber-fantastic Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering in Berlin and will be finalized for release through Exile On Mainstream in the Spring of 2016 on CD and 2xLP.

BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS vocalist Malte Seidel issued a statement on the experience of recording the album, “Carrier is the result of a band being in a constant state of deterioration. Doing a record is a very unpleasant and harmful process for us. Creating Negative Black already was a nightmare, but with Carrier the understanding of the term nightmare needs to be expanded. This is not being said to play the ‘tension and dissent create great art’ card. This album is not art. This album is not musicianship. This album is simply the album that we were able to do under the current circumstances while sometimes asking ourselves if a split-up would not be the better option. The final mix of Carrier is done at the moment.”

The BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS horde will celebrate its tenth anniversary as a unit on November 4th and 5th, 2015 in their hometown of Mannheim, with a special event called B.SON Fest which will feature extensively devastating sets from the band both nights. Additional lineup and event details will be announced alongside more details on the band’s dismal upcoming studio massacre at a later date. Diehards of the scathing, scummy works of Grime, Whitehorse, Graves At Sea, labelmates Obelyskkh and other downtuned, slug-paced sonic decimation stay tuned.

BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS’ second proper LP, Negative Black, is available in CD and 2xLP packages via Exile On Mainstream HERE and stateside via Earsplit Distro HERE.

Black Shape of Nexus, “VII”

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Swallow the Sun Post “Heartstrings Shattering” Lyric Video; Euro Tour Announced

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 7th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

swallow the sun (Photo by Jussi Ratialainen Photography)

My immediate question on seeing that Swallow the Sun had a new lyric video for the track “Heartstrings Shattering” from their upcoming Songs from the North I, II and III full-length was to which of those three parts the cut belonged. The Finnish death-doom six-piece will release the album on Nov. 13 through Century Media, and the triple-disc outing follows the format of playing toward their particular style both in its whole and in the parts that make it up, the first chapter being their typical approach, the second an acoustic outing and the third a more extreme, presumably death metal, vision.

I’ve noted a couple times already the ambitiousness of the project and that I’m looking forward to hearing how it’s all turned out. “Heartstrings Shattering” comes from the first of the three parts, and sure enough, it blends melancholic, melodic passages — in this case using a guest vocalist and all — with the band’s post-Peaceville take on doom, shades of classic My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost cast over more modern chug and fluid transitions from one modus to another. Ultimately, it’s as lush as it is pummeling, and that’s no doubt why it was chosen to be the first audio to be made public from the work as a whole. I don’t imagine it was easy to pick a track with three records’ worth of material on-hand.

Swallow the Sun have also announced a European tour for next month, and you can find those dates under the lyric video below, courtesy of the PR wire:

Swallow the Sun, “Heartstrings Shattering” lyric video

SWALLOW THE SUN launch lyric video for “Heartstrings Shattering”

SWALLOW THE SUN have just launched a lyric video for their brand new song “Heartstrings Shattering”, taken from the first part of their upcoming triple album!

Songs from the North I, II & III will be released on November 13, 2015 via Century Media Records!

Incorporating dark menace and gradations of death, black and funeral doom, each of the three albums of “Songs from the North I, II & III” embodies the band’s unofficial band motto, “Gloom, Beauty & Despair”:

Songs from the North I continues in the vein of the albums before it – first-rate death-doom in the typical style of SWALLOW THE SUN.

Songs from the North II is a beautiful, acoustic foray representing the group’s ability to unplug and revel in the darkness.

Songs from the North III is the most extreme album, a complete ride into SWALLOW THE SUN’s most horrific abyss of finely-crafted, conscience-crushing funeral doom.

In addition to the launch of the new lyric video, SWALLOW THE SUN have also announced a European headlining tour dates for November/December 2015! They will be accompanied by fellow countrymen Wolfheart and further support bands that will be announced soon. See below for the exact dates!

11.26. Berlin, K17, DE
11.27. Hamburg, Headcrash, DE
11.28. Rotterdam, Baroeg, NL
11.29. Apeldoorn, TBC, NL
11.30. Paris, Glazart, FR
12.4. Valencia, Rock City, ES
12.5. Barcelona, Apolo 2, ES
12.6. Madrid, Caracol, ES
12.8. Montpellier, Secret Place, FR
12.9. Pratteln, Z7, CH
12.10. Brescia, Circolo Colony, IT
12.11. Ljbubljana, Orto Bar, SL
12.12. Budapest, Dürer Kert, HU
12.13. Kosice, Colosseum Club, SK
12.14. Krakau, Club Rotunda, PL
12.15. Vienna, Viper Room, AT
12.16. Munchen, Backstage, DE
12.17. Weinheim, Café Zentralbar, DE
12.18. Vosselaar, Biebob, BE
12.19. Bochum, Matrix, DE

Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

Swallow the Sun website

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Swallow the Sun on Twitter

Swallow the Sun at Century Media

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Desertfest Berlin 2016: Monolord, Monomyth and Death Alley Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 7th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster


There’s an odd symmetry to the three bands who are the latest additions to the lineup of Desertfest Berlin 2016. Monolord, from Sweden, have a similar moniker to Monomyth, who, like Death Alley, are from the Netherlands. One into the next into the next. I like that. Of course, the three groups have little in common sonically, what with Monolord‘s bash-you-over-the-head riffing, Monomyth‘s instru-progressive explorations and Death Alley‘s balls-out boogie-thrash, but that really just goes to show how the reach of Desertfest has expanded over the last several years since its incarnation. This is the second batch of announcements and already it looks like a good time.

One gets the distinct feeling that it’s only going to get bigger as they go from here:

desertfest berlin 2016 poster

Desertfest Berlin 2016 – MONOLORD, MONOMYTH, DEATH ALLEY added to the line-up!

We have new names to announce today, that will satisfy all you fans of guitar driven rock, stoner and monolithic riffs! We are thrilled to tell that Dutch Speed Rock Heavyweights Death Alley, progressive heavy instrumentalists Monomyth, and Sweden’s mega-doom-plodders Monolord are joining the 2016 line-up, alongside previsouly confirmed ELECTRIC WIZARD, Elder, Wo Fat, Mothership and Somali Yacht Club!! All three have recently released a new album or are about to record one, and we are very excited to have them on board!

Happening from APRIL 28th to 30th, DESERTFEST BERLIN 2016 might be the trippiest experience of your life, so be quick… join us… take the ride and buy your ticket now! (tickets’ links below).

See you all in 205 days!

Regular HARD TICKETS or E-TICKETS can be purchased on our WEBSITE! Our ticketprices remain the same, that’s 85 Euros for all you newbies! But remember that we were sold out last time about 7 weeks ahead, and we think we may top that this year!

Death Alley, “Black Magick Boogieland” live on 3voor12 Radio

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Graveyard, Innocence and Decadence: Never Theirs to Take

Posted in Reviews on October 7th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

graveyard innocence and decadence

The fanbase of Sweden’s Graveyard — who, going into their fourth album and third for Nuclear Blast, Innocence and Decadence, can rightly be considered among the most influential heavy rock acts of their generation in Europe — seems to be becoming more divided over time between those who wish the four-piece would get down exclusively to the raw shuffle that made their 2007 self-titled the landmark it has become, and those more given to appreciate the melancholy sensibility that has emerged to diversify their approach over the course of the two subsequent full-lengths, 2011’s Hisingen Blues (review here) and 2012’s Lights Out (review here) — the very title of which seemed to hint at the moodiness within.

For what it’s worth, if it’s one or the other, I’m in the latter camp. The progression undertaken by Graveyard — guitarist/vocalist Joakim Nilsson, guitarist Jonathan Ramm, rejoined bassist Truls Mörck and drummer Axel Sjöberg — toward a more soulful sound has been the very thing distinguishing them from the legion of acts following in their retro-styled wake, and the 43-minute/11-track Innocence and Decadence makes a lasting impression in its subdued moments, but true to the two-pronged aspect hinted at in the name of the record, that’s not the entire story, and songs like opener “Magnetic Shunk,” “Never Theirs to Sell” — a spiritual successor to “The Suits, the Law and the Uniforms,” from the last album — “From a Hole in the Wall” and “Hard-Headed” provide some of the most chaotic churn Graveyard have enacted to-date. Don’t believe me? “From a Hole in the Wall” has blastbeats. Stick that in your ’70s boogie.

One of Innocence and Decadence‘s greatest strengths is that even as it plays to one side or the other, delving into wistful longing on “Exit 97,” proffering soul-rock mastery on “Too Much is Not Enough,” complete with backup singers delivering the hook lines “Can’t keep/A promise never made,” and rounding out with the minimalist “Stay for a Song” long after the “Did all the rest now I gotta do you” testosterone chicanery of “Magnetic Shunk” has subsided, it also finds middle ground between them. A mid-paced cut like “The Apple and the Tree,” the drum-fueled semi-psych spaciousness of “Can’t Walk Out,” the ultra-swinging “Cause and Defect” or the languid Ramm-led sing-along of the penultimate “Far too Close” provide moments of fluid transition en route to one extreme or the other. Now, I don’t think Graveyard sat down with a chart and said, “Okay, we’re going to start fast, then slow down, then speed up, so let’s write this and this and this,” but it’s emblematic of a varied (yet of consistent quality) approach to songwriting, their maturity as a band now approaching their 10th year, and their skill for placing each song on the album to maximize the overarching flow.


The end result is that Graveyard don’t simply jump from one end to the other — except where it suits them, as in the sharp cut from “Exit 97” to “Never Theirs to Sell” — but rely on organic fluidity every bit as integral to their sound as recording live or the the analog feel that remains strong in their material. Split into vinyl sides between “Too Much is Not Enough” and “From a Hole in the Wall” — which features a shift in vocal approach that brings Mörck to the lead-singer role — Innocence and Decadence emerges as a logical step forward from where Graveyard were three years ago on Lights Out and finds them maintaining the level of output that has let their reach expand so far. They come across committed less to the superficial trappings of a retro aesthetic than to their own songcraft, and that allows them to carry over these tracks in their given aesthetic as it would even had they undergone a stylistic shift as drastic as that of fellow Örebro natives and labelmates Witchcraft, whose most recent offering was a marked departure toward modern production.

Performance-wise, Sjöberg puts on a show across these cuts that deserves to enter his name into the conversation for best active drummers in heavy rock. He does more with a closing hi-hat and ride cymbal on “Exit 97” than most drummers can pull off with an entire kit, and is just as at home ghost-noting Ramm‘s stellar lead work on “Hard-Headed” as he is stick-clicking and slow-jazz rolling on “Far too Close,” tossing off frenetic snare fills in the meantime that are pure class and always seem to find their way back into the pocket right on time. Similarly, Nilsson‘s voice proves more able than ever to carry an entire track, as it does most notably on the quiet, sweet “Stay for a Song,” which finishes Innocence and Decadence not with riotous shuffle, but with keys so soft they’re barely there. His post-Plant high-register howl is in effect for the end of “The Apple and the Tree” and “Never Theirs to Sell,” but true to the spirit of the album as a whole, he’s not limited at all to one or the other, and as noted, there’s exploration of pushing his limits even further on “From a Hole in the Wall,” as well as “Can’t Walk Out” and “Cause and Defect,” that only emphasizes the level of frontman he’s become.

That’s not to take away from what Ramm brings to the guitar or what Mörck (who played guitar on the self-titled prior to parting ways with the band and then rejoining on bass) adds on bass — a song like “Cause and Defect” would be severely lacking swagger without him — just that particularly on initial listens, the vocals and drums offer several striking accomplishments. For the band as a whole, Innocence and Decadence does likewise, be it the perfectly patient “Too Much is Not Enough” or the catchy sway of “Far too Close” pushing toward the album’s conclusion, and it leaves little mystery as to why Graveyard have become the band they have, working their way toward an institution and toward statesmanship, but still ready to tear it up when the occasion arises, as it does at several well-timed junctures here.

Graveyard, “Too Much is Not Enough” official video

Graveyard on Thee Facebooks

Nuclear Blast Records

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