The track “Then You Win” by prolific, always-busy Russian heavy rockers The Grand Astoria was released as a digital single earlier this year (streamed here), but as there’s a new 7″ version of the single out as a precursor to their latest full-length, Punkadelica Supreme, the St. Petersburg-based weirdo revelers decided they’d put together a video for it as well. Culled from footage from some recent shows in their native land, “Then You Win” gives those of us who may never get to see the band live some view of what we’re missing.
From the looks of it, plenty. The Grand Astoria never shy away from injecting their material with a healthy individualized sensibility, and “Then You Win” sets ’90s-style guitar crunch against some off-kilter melodies, resulting in a feel that — true to the upcoming album — isn’t quite punk, isn’t quite psych, somehow relatable to the Melvins but not seeming remotely interested in actually sounding like them. One of my favorite things about the band is that I have a hard time classifying them, and as they make ready to release Punkadelica Supreme, that doesn’t seem to have dissipated in the slightest.
Posted in Radio on June 12th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
No word on whether UK four-piece Monolith Cult had contradicting Trouble in mind with the title of their forthcoming debut LP, Run from the Light– as opposed to Trouble‘s 1987 third album, Run to the Light– but there’s a clear undercurrent of traditional doom in the Bradford heavy rockers’ approach. They’re not through “Sold Down the River,” the opener of the record, before guitarist Lee Baines, also ofLazarus Blackstar, has turned the riff to C.O.C.‘s “Albatross” on its head, showing clear knowledge of where the border between rock and doom lies and as much willingness to cross it both there and throughout the album.
They follow the strong opener with their infectious namesake tune, “Monolith Cult,” on which bassist Ian “Izak Gloom”Buxton,also of Solstice and Lazarus Blackstar, underscores Baines‘ guitar with considerable rumble while vocalist Bry Outlaw recites the hook like the incantation threat it is. After drummer Damian Clarke picks up at the end, they nod back in the direction of the chorus without going fully back to it, and it proves enough to give some hint of their songwriting acumen, which shows itself further as they bury a “Hole in the Sky” boogie deep within the reaches of “Blind Watchmaker,” repurposing a classic idea to suit their own ends, the vocals lending emotional weight without being over-the-top in either their bluesiness or performance.
Tracks keep a lengthy ethic — none so much as “Sold Down the River” at 9:43 (immediate points for putting the longest song first) — but don’t give much of a sense of wandering from the central ideas grounding them. “Blind Watchmaker” has a verse riff that were it not quite so viscous could prove to be a shuffle in a faster tempo, and “Violent Movements” proves even more Sabbathian in the guitar and bass work, but avoids sonic cliche deftly with fervent crash propelling the verse, an unexpected level of bombast leading to the more melodic chorus, catchy but not quite as insistent as that of “Monolith Cult.” Nor does it need to be. A slower break once again introduces a doomier vibe, and Bry Outlaw adjusts his vocals to match, so that as “Human Cull” begins, Monolith Cult are at their most plodding and doomed yet.
So of course it’s a ripper. A sample of a 1964 Lyndon Johnson campaign commercial threatening nuclear holocaust begins the track, and from there, Monolith Cult embark on a dark boogie that seems to sum up some of their apocalyptic framework while also stomping out their most rocking material. They’re not thrashing or anything, but they get their point across and manage to keep the pervasive moody atmosphere even at the increased pace, keeping the big slowdown of the intro to closer “Suicide and Heroin” — announced righteously by Buxton‘s bass — consistent despite the brakes being applied.
“Suicide and Heroin” winds up reveling in faster chugging and one of Run from the Light‘s most potent blends of heavy rock and doom, leaning more to one side, then the other as Bry Outlaw‘s vocals follow the groove and add an extra layer for the chorus. But for the opener, the finale is the longest piece on the album, and it ties together everything Monolith Cult are able to accomplish throughout as one might hope, also giving a glimpse of where the foursome might be able to go with the sound their next time out. At around five and a half minutes in, it kicks into a steady thud that finishes the album with a moment of ultra-satisfying groove, giving a last-minute surprise to what’s already proven an impressive debut.
Future Noise Recordings will release Monolith Cult‘s Run from the Lightthis summer. You can hear the album as part of the regular playlist now on The Obelisk Radio and check out the track “Monolith Cult” below, which the label has made available for streaming and download:
Monolith Cult, “Monolith Cult” from Run from the Light
Posted in Whathaveyou on June 12th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
After marauding this Spring with like-minded booze rockers Gypsyhawk, Texan trio Mothership are taking to the streets once again this month for a week of shows alongside Communion. The tour will include a stop, as noted below, at the pre-party for Show Class magazine’s Born Free 5 fest.
No word yet on a follow-up to the band’s self-titled debut, self-released by the band last year and reissued by Ripple Music earlier in 2013, but I can only imagine they’re hammering out new songs on the road, which for what Mothership does, is where they belong.
The PR wire takes it from here:
MOTHERSHIP Gearing Up For Summer Tour With COMMUNION
The Dallas, Texas-based trio of heavy rock bad asses known as MOTHERSHIP is about to make a return the road for a brief run with psychedelic doomsters COMMUNION.
Those who missed out on the band’s Spring run with GYPSYHAWK now have a second chance to experience some no-frills rock n’ roll magic when MOTHERSHIP kicks off their Summer tour on June 24th at Hotel Vegas in Austin, TX. This run will include a June 28th stop in Trabuco Canyon, CA for Show Class Magazine’s Born Free 5 Festival People’s Champ Party. Details for Born Free 5 and the pre-party can be found at the following links:
In other news, the song “Lunar Master,” off of MOTHERSHIP’s self-titled debut, has been ranked #3 on The Paranoid Hitsophrenic ‘Regular Old Doom Charts.’ Check out the rankings, which includes a link to a stream of the track,at this location.
MOTHERSHIP Summer 2013 Tour Dates w/ COMMUNION June 24 Austin, TX @ Hotel Vegas June 25 El Paso, TX @ The Lowbrow Palace June 26 Tucson, AZ @ Surly Wench Pub w/ Thorncaster June 27 San Diego, CA @ The Void w/ Harsh Toke June 28 Trabuco Canyon, CA @ Cook’s Corner – Born Free 5 Pre-Party w/ O Zorn June 30 Los Angeles, CA @ TBA July 1 Phoenix, AZ @ Yucca Tap Room w/ Flying Scorpion July 2 Albuquerque, NM @ TBA July 3 Midland, TX @ Blue Max
Posted in audiObelisk on June 12th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
Some records just make you feel dirty, and Italian sludge trio Grime are nothing if not aptly named. The Trieste three-piece are preparing to release their debut LP, Deteriorate, on Forcefield Records and Mordgrimm Records, and it’s an album of unrelenting viciousness, plodding out 40 minutes of searing nastiness that makes stylistic kin of Iron Monkey and Grief without losing sight entirely of the EyeHateGod swagger in its slower movements. Come to think of it, even the fast parts here are pretty slow.
If you want to get some clue as to Grime‘s perspective, take a look at the first two song titles: “Burning Down the Cross,” “Pouring out the Hatred.” The two actions could more or less stand as an analogy for the sonic approach on Deteriorate, the lung-filling mud of which gives no letup across the album’s course. Set to be issued on LP via Forcefield and CD through Mordgrimm, the record makes a show of its disdain, seething contempt running in the suitably hopeless “Giving Up” and the blistering “Pills.” The steadily declining riffs of Marco lead the way for his throat-ripping screams to follow, and drummer Chris and bassist Paulo lock in grooving drudgery befitting the sludgy, hate-fueled atmosphere.
This is demonstrated best, perhaps, on the closer “Idiot God,” which makes its bones on an ultra-simple riff and stomp, Chris adding a few extra snare hits here and there but otherwise no flourish whatsoever, so that even as the song picks up at the end, there’s no discernible shift from the onslaught, and Grime remain as heavy and extreme as ever as the album marches out on more screams and feedback-soaked riffing. True to the graphic nature of the Deteriorate cover art, Grime are an aural evisceration, and though it should go without saying at this point, not at all for the faint of heart.
Heads will roll, mellows will be harshed. Behold Deterioratein full:
Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!
Grime‘s Deteriorate is coming soon on Mordgrimm Records and Forcefield Records. In addition to the CD release, the 180 gram vinyl will include a limited run of red and purple. More info and pre-orders below:
Reissued in 2006 on CD through MeteorCity and vinyl through 20 Buck Spin, the 1991 Lunar Wombsophomore outing by The Obsessed still seems underappreciated on repeat listens. It was the recorded debut of the lineup of drummer Greg Rogers, bassist Scott Reeder and guitarist/vocalist Scott “Wino” Weinrich — then winding down his tenure with Saint Vitus following the release of V in 1990 — and indeed the only album this trio would put out. By the time The Obsessed got around to releasing the follow-up, 1994′s The Church Within, Reeder was long since departed to Kyuss and replaced by Guy Pinhas.
Reeder winds up a major contributor to Lunar Womb, whether it’s his bass coming to the fore on the later “No Mas” or his taking lead vocals on second track “Bardo” or side B’s “Back to Zero,” but the album is best taken as a whole and on that level, it’s easy to see how it became so central to the blueprint of modern traditional doom. From Wino‘s dreary riffing on the title-track to the faster rush of “Spew” and the ultra-primitive “No Blame” to the muffled heartbeat noises that cap closer “Embryo,” the completeness of Lunar Wombas both an overarching flow of songs and a collection of individual standouts isn’t to be overlooked.
It’s easy to argue the enduring appeal of Lunar Womb and its tracks is part of why The Obsessed have been able to reunite to such fanfare at fests like Roadburn and this year’s Maryland Deathfest (video posted here). With production from the band along with Mathias Schneeberger and the striking Saturn Devouring His Son (circa 1819) cover art by Spanish painter Francisco de Goya, the album taps into a timeless sphere of doom that’s perhaps even more resonant with 22 years of hindsight than it was at the time. After hosting the band’s 1990 self-titled debut a couple weeks back, it seems only fair to give some follow-up.
Here’s The Obsessed‘s Lunar Wombin its entirety. Enjoy and have a great Wino Wednesday:
Posted in Whathaveyou on June 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
The forthcoming South of the Earth will be the first Iron Man album in four years — nothing compared to the decade between Generation Void (1999) and I Have Returned (2009; review here) — and the first with “Screaming Mad” Dee Calhoun as the frontman, and though a handful of EPs as the band ironed out their approach over the last couple years have given some hint of what to expect (i.e., doom), South of the Earthstill feels like an event. Release date still to come.
While we wait on that, the album art and finished tracklisting for South of the Earthhave been made public, and you can find them below along with a preview of the record:
Maryland doom legends Iron Man are happy to announce completion of their fifth full-length album, “South of the Earth.”
Recording and mixing took place at Hudson Street Sound in Annapolis, Maryland with producer/engineer Frank Marchand III. This was Iron Man’s second project with Marchand, who was also at the controls for the band’s 2009 album “I Have Returned.” “South of the Earth” was mastered at Bias Studios in Springfield, Virginia.
Digital distribution of “South of the Earth” will be handled by MusicLive365/Sony. The album’s physical distributor will be announced soon.
The track listing for “South of the Earth,” which is set for a summer release, is as follows:
South of the Earth Hail to the Haze A Whore in Confession The Worst and Longest Day Ariel Changed the Sky IISOEO (The Day of the Beast) Half-Face/Thy Brother’s Keeper (Dunwich pt. 2) In the Velvet Darkness The Ballad of Ray Garraty
Iron Man “South of the Earth” personnel: Alfred Morris III – guitars, backing vocals Screaming Mad Dee – voice, piano, keyboards Louis Strachan – bass, backing vocals Mot Waldmann – drums, percussion
Posted in On the Radar on June 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
Immediately on This Mountain Waits, the vibe is “old soul.” The second album by UK-based heavy blues rocking five-piece Pearl Handled Revolver, the 11-track collection released on King Mojo Records never, ever veers into vintage production or departs from a modern feel, but there’s a classic sensibility underscoring the songs all the same. It comes across in the throaty, excellently-mixed vocals of Lee Vernon and in the synth, Mellotron and other key work of Simon Rinaldo, who fleshes out the melodic depth of Andy Paris‘ guitar while Oli Carter‘s bass and Chris Thatcher‘s drums hold down smooth grooves, tossing a little funk into “The Red, White and Blues” but keeping a straightforward edge to This Mountain Waitsopener “Do it Again.”
The sophomore outing follows a mostly-numerical series of EPs and the 2011 full-length debut, Colossus, and with Vernon‘s vocal approach, live-feeling echo and periodically jazz-minded influence in the keys, some measure of Doors comparison on quieter cuts like the riding-on-the-storm “Josey,” “Rattle Your Bones” or the more raucous earlier stomper “Johnny’s in the Basement” is inevitable, and by all accounts it’s not something Pearl Handled Revolver are unaware of. Still, the pervading feel of the album is original, and familiar aspects are offset by curves like the piano-into-organ-led “Hourglass,” which develops some of the band’s moodier moments into a deceptively rich build. Carter provides a classy performance on bass front to back, and while the keys by their very nature sometimes take the focus away from the guitar, Paris does an excellent job in reinforcing the dynamic on a song like “Hello Mary,” grounding the ’60s psych feel of Rinaldo‘s keys with a distorted strum to go with Thatcher‘s hi-hat verses.
A sort of apex seems to take hold with “Rabbit Hole,” which kicks into insistent bursts of low and high end volume before embarking on a winding transitional line that gives This Mountain Waitsnot only a thicker tonality — probably their “heaviest” stretch of the album as it moves into a darker headspace — but a prog-leaning sensibility as well. Vernon is a steady presence at the fore, but where his singing could easily fall into the category of unfortunate heavy rock vocalists who are way too far in front of the music and over-the-top in their whoa-momma-yeah bluesiness, he’s better balanced all around with the music behind, so that the drama of “Honeycomb” comes across without distraction. Ultimately, as the title line is delivered as the last of the album, it’s the overall balance that is working most in This Mountain Waits‘ favor, since for the aesthetic the band has taken on — progressive, classic, heavy, blues rock — there’s little margin for flubs, and though the tracks sound wholly natural, they’re also crisply presented and clear-headed in where they want to move.
That accomplished feel lends credibility to Pearl Handled Revolver‘s adopting of the more classic aesthetic and the fact that they manage to get through This Mountain Waitswithout falling prey to the trap of sonic redundancy makes the album even more on the winning end. As my first experience with the band, I found This Mountain Waits to be engaging and cohesive with an individual take on a broad range of traditions, and easily worth the effort of a listen. How they might continue to develop the intricacies presented here is anyone’s best guess, but in the meantime, their blues are infectious.
Pearl Handled Revolver, “Rattle Your Bones” official video
Floridian outfits Hollow Leg and Orbweaver have teamed up for a long weekender from Aug. 2-5. Playing four nights in their native state, both bands will be supporting new releases — in the case of Hollow Leg, it’s their new full-length collection Abysmal, which is out on Last Anthem Records on July 30. For Orbweaver, the Strange Transmissions from the NeuralnomiconEP will mark their studio debut with a release on Primitive Violence.
Taking from the titles of both, the Abysmal Transmissions tour runs from Orbweaver‘s home in Miami to Hollow Leg‘s in Jacksonville. The poster below has specifics:
Hollow Leg & Orbweaver – Abysmal Transmissions Tour 2013
Hollow Leg & Orbweaver tour dates:
Aug. 2 Churchills Pub, Miami, FL
Aug. 3 Will’s Pub, Orlando, FL
Aug. 4 Bowman Motorcycles, St. Petersburg, FL
Aug. 5 Burro Bar, Jacksonville, FL
Posted in Whathaveyou on June 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
The news about Gurt‘s new single, Hoboreaper, is cool and all, but what really catches my attention in the info below is the hint dropped that it’s going to be 2014 before the London sludgers get their full-length debut out. I guess that makes this release something of a stopgap, but if the new track is something of a teaser for what’s to come, it’s one I’m especially looking forward to for next year after seeing the band at Desertfest in April.
Info and trailer follow, courtesy of the PR wire:
GURT – Hoboreaper – Coming July 1st 2013
GURT are currently beavering away on their on going mission to encourage the world to groove to a sludgier stomp and create their first full length release and its looking like this will be with you all in the early parts of 2014. In the mean time they think it would be polite to show you how this work is going in the form of a brand new single ‘HOBOREAPER’.
This track was originally planned for release on a split but it the project has been delayed and it was decided that the world should not have to wait for an example of how the GURT sound is evolving so this new song has been coupled with 2 recent live tracks that have been professionally recorded by Paul Hollinsworth (of paulofsound) at the ‘When Planets Collide – Winter Warmer Weekender’ to bring you a single that should keep the rabid GURT fans happy for the time being.
Featuring new Artwork from Front man Gareth Kelly (GrowthsBrainDribbles) Mixed and Mastered by our long time collaborator Nick Kinnish previously of Serafina Studios (whom has also worked on the likes of Dopefight, Johnny Truant, Architects and War Wolf) This CD single and digital release shall be available from July 1st and is now up for pre-order atgurt.bigcartel.com.
Featuring the tracks: 1: Hoboreaper 2: You Ain’t From Around these Parts? (Live at the Brixton, Windmill) 3: Soapfeast (Live at the Brixton, Windmill)
Same logo, new decade. New York City-based doom outfit Blood Farmers‘ last new-ish release was a reissue of their demo Permanent Brain Damage that came out through Japan’sLeaf Hound Records in 2004. The tracks for that were recorded circa 1991. Their only full-length to date was 1995′s Blood Farmers, which came out on Hellhound Records (reissued by Leaf Hound in 2008), but tonight the trio of bassist/vocalist Eli Brown, guitarist Dave Szulkin (also The Disease Concept) and drummer Tad Leger (also Lucertola) have unveiled their latest work, “Headless Eyes,” and made available their first studio recording in 18 years.
I’ll give you a second to think about where you were in 1995.
“Headless Eyes” comes from Blood Farmers‘ forthcoming sophomore outing of the same name, and while I don’t have a release date handy for the album Headless Eyes, I’ve been fortunate enough to catch Blood Farmers live a couple times now — at Days of the Doomed II last year, at Stoner Hands of Doom XI in 2011, and at Roadburn that same year — I can attest that the band brings a suitably plodding, horror-obsessed atmosphere to the song that’s done justice by the studio version. One big difference is the use of sampling to go along with Brown‘s lyrics, and of course the clips come from the 1971 movie, Headless Eyes, in which a deranged artist loses an eye while robbing somebody and becomes a serial killer who — spoiler alert — gouges out ladies’ eyes with a spoon.
In the song, the samples at several points coincide directly with Brown‘s vocals, and that gives a cool, almost echoing effect to go along with the lumbering riff and rhythm. Just before the eight minute mark, Leger counts in a faster solo section reminiscent of the churning break in Sabbath‘s “Sweet Leaf,” and they put it to some good use. Not to be missed.
More on the album as I hear it. In the meantime, doom on this:
Posted in audiObelisk on June 10th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
A couple things you’ll want to note as you make your way through the latest batch of audio streams from Roadburn 2013. First, the Satan’s Satyrs set is a Blue Cheer tribute, and that’s frickin’ awesome, and second, I’m pretty sure that Pilgrim photo below (from the same set as the one above) is one of mine. So, you know, it’s nice to be included.
Thanks as always to Walter and the Roadburn crew for letting me host these streams, and to Marcel van de Vondervoort for continuing to boldly helm the recordings year after year. Posterity owes you a gratitude.
The Pretty Things – Live at Roadburn 2013
Goat – Live at Roadburn 2013
Amenra – Live at Roadburn 2013
Cough – Live at Roadburn 2013
The Atlas Moth – Live at Roadburn 2013
My Brother The Wind – Live at Roadburn 2013
Satan’s Satyrs Tribute To Blue Cheer – Live at Roadburn 2013
London-based psych-soul metallers Vodun – who remain hard enough to pin down that “psych-soul metal” really is the best I can come up with — release a new single today in the form of the Superhot Records two-tracker Oya. By some amazing coincidence, the three-piece have a video for the track “Oya” that’s also just been unveiled. I mean, really, what are the chances? You’d almost swear these things were planned out in advance.
Contrary to what the name Triple A Films might tell, you, the production value on the “Oya” clip is professional grade, and there’s a pretty clear narrative ark that — as ever — really takes a turn for the weird when the eggplant gets involved. I feel like I’m still trying to get a handle on what Vodun are going for, but I know it’s fascinating. Feel free to check out the video below for “Oya” and peruse the PR wire info that follows to see if you agree.
Vodun, “Oya” official video
Vodun release video for new single, “OYA”, out now on Superhot Records
London heavy-psych-soul trio Vodun have released a mind-bending video for their new download-only single, OYA, released today through Superhot Records.
The single follows the band’s self-released Eat Up the Sun EP from earlier this year. While the technical, heavy riffing can still be heard, there’s a stronger focus on powerful, soaring vocals than the guitar driven EP.
Featuring two members of one of London’s finest underground bands, Invasion, who disbanded in 2011, Vodun have taken the basic blueprint of that band, added a huge West African voodoo influence and ramped up the intensity across the board. Chan (vocals) and Zel (drums) found a kindred spirit in Oli (guitar) and emerged as a more technically accomplished, musically aggressive and energetic band.
Vodun are touring the UK with fellow Londoners Ghold in June. Catch them live on the following dates for a truly spiritual live show.
WED 26th – MANCHESTER – Wahlbar, Fallowfield THUR 27th – LEEDS – Santiagos FRI 28th – NOTTINGHAM – Stuck on a Name Studios SAT 29th – LONDON – The Windmill, Brixton
Superhot Records is run by musicians Chris West (Trippy Wicked/Groan) and Leigh Jones (Groan). They are committed to bringing the best from all ends of the underground heavy music spectrum to people’s attention in a way that makes it easy for fans to find and listen to new heavy music.
Posted in Reviews on June 10th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
Tropical Storm Whoever was raging outside — and by that I mean it was raining hard — but there was no way I was going to miss the Kings Destroy release party for their second album, A Time of Hunting, at the St. Vitus bar in Brooklyn with Windhand, Clamfight and Belus. The record, out on War Crime Recordings, is a killer, and as I was watching the last of the Clamfight CDs go from the Maple Forum store even as I stood in front of the stage to see them play, it was the perfect occasion at the perfect time.
Grim Brooklynite trio Belus opened the evening’s four-band bill, their feet firmly planted in a blackened type of doom that was brooding one minute, raging the next, but never quite letting go of its tension completely. They were already on by the time I got there, but I saw enough to get a basic feel for their approach, varied in tempo more than atmosphere but still effectively done in bringing a frigid feel through warmer tones than one would probably expect. They had demo tapes for sale, and though I didn’t get to pick one up (kind of backlogged on tapes, believe it or not), they gave a solid showing to the early arrivals at the St. Vitus, broiled in a specifically crusted malevolence that gave an extreme start to the proceedings.
They were more or less a surprise, but the rest of the night was about knowing what was coming and being thrilled at the twists. Clamfight and Kings Destroy are friends, bands about whom I couldn’t be impartial even if I had any interest in trying, and even Windhand I’ve seen a couple times by now, so yeah, familiarity reigned. It hadn’t even been that long since I last saw Clamfight in Philly with Borracho, Been Obscene and SuperVoid (review here), but being the nerd I am for the band, I’ll take whatever opportunities I can get, particularly as they’ve started now writing for the follow-up to I Versus the Glacier.
Speaking of, new song “Block Ship” was trotted out and fit in well with the band’s established bashers from their first two albums. Their plan for the track last I heard was to include it on a split they’re putting together in honor of their appearance in November at Stoner Hands of Doom XIII in Virginia, but I have the feeling they’re going to decide it’s too good to leave just for that and I wouldn’t be surprised if it shows up on the inevitable next Clamfight full-length as well. Along with that and regular suspects “Sand Riders” and the motor-grooves of “Mountain” from I Versus the Glacier, the Philly foursome tossed in a curve with “Ghosts I Have Known” from their 2010 Volume Idebut.
That wound up being the highlight of the set for me personally, with the slower, semi-Southern sludge feel and the interplay of shouts, growls and screams over top from frontdrummer Andy Martin, not to mention the guitarmonies of Joel Harris and Sean McKee. I caught bassist Louis Koble and Harris laughing on the far side of the stage during the faster section of the song while the band thrashed out behind McKee‘s squibbling solo, and it only underscored for me the good time being had by all. They’ve gotten to be pretty tight with the Kings Destroy cats following a couple weekenders and other shared gigs, so it was cool to see those guys up front digging the Clamfight set as well. It seemed too much to hope for that Clamfight would bash into “Rabbit” after “Ghosts I Have Known,” and it was, but “Stealing the Ghost Horse” made a suitable closer as it does on the record, its build vicious and clean-vocal payoff never failing to exceed expectation.
It was, it’s worth repeating, Kings Destroy‘s record release show for A Time of Hunting — their second album behind the 2010 debut, …And the Rest Will Surely Perish, which like Clamfight‘s I Versus the Glacier, was issued on The Obelisk’s in-house label, The Maple Forum – and there was no doubt by the time the five-piece dug into “The Toe” and “Casse-Tête” whose party it was. The band, in addition to being a legitimate draw at this point, seemed to import a variety of family and friends for the occasion, and but for the title-track and “Shattered Pattern,” they played the record in its entirety, if out of order, putting “Stormbreak,” which starts A Time of Hunting, after “Casse-Tête” and following it with “Decrepit,” track four on the new one, and “The Mountie” from the first album.
With those last two in succession particularly, Kings Destroy demonstrated just how far they’ve come in the last three years. After shows up and down the East Coast, a tour through Europe and more to come — not to mention the pedigree of the band’s members, which is an exhaustion to contemplate, let alone type — they are locked in as a band and full-on in a way I’d credit few NYC-based acts as being. True to their name, they destroyed, drummer Rob Sefcik holding “Decrepit” steady on stage with guitarists Carl Porcaro and Chris Skowronski and bassist Aaron Bumpus while vocalist Steve Murphy hopped off stage — introducing yours truly in the process; I caught “This is JJ, he’s an awkward metal guy,” but the rest didn’t come through — to walk through the crowd during the quieter break and the melodic later vocals, repeating the line “Hold on…” and talking of a brand new start. The lyrics are runes in the liner notes to the album. Good luck with that.
But the dichotomy: To go right from that into the raw, viscerally doomed groove of “The Mountie” highlighted for me the expansion in Kings Destroy‘s sound and how well they can carry across ideas, be they simple or complex. There was some not-quite-moshing going on in front of the stage, but everything was self-contained and everyone was familial, having a good time and so forth, myself included in my awkward metal guy way. Closing out with “Blood of Recompense” and their own album finale, “Turul” — the working title for the record itself — Kings Destroy saved the weirdest for last. I still hear “Too Many Puppies” in the vocal cadence for “Turul,” whether it’s meant to be there or not. There was a good portion of the room for whom the night was over when Kings Destroy were finished. The rest reaped the volume excess of Windhand as a reward.
I’d seen the band before, true, but this was the first time I’d caught them with Parker Chandler of Cough on bass. I picked up a CD of the recent split between the two acts prior to their set, and heard nothing in Windhand‘s ultra-thick double-guitar drudgery to make me regret the purchase. Frontwoman Dorthia Cottrell paced back and forth with manic intensity while Chandler, drummer Ryan Wolfe and guitarists Asechiah Bogdan and Garrett Morris emitted wave after vicious wave of low-end riffage. If even a fraction of that energy comes across on their Relapse label debut full-length (it’ll be their second LP overall), the album is going to be one that well earns its anticipation.
Only snag as regards Windhand‘s set was that I had an hour-plus ride home and had to be up in about five hours to head north to Massachusetts and continue my hunt for housing, so while I might’ve liked to stay and lost myself further in the rise and crash of each cresting undulation, I had to run. In the rain. To my car. And then drive for a long time, sleep for not a long time, then drive for a really long time. Still, it was a gig that more than justified what I considered mandatory attendance, and for seeing good friends doing good work, I was glad to be there to bear witness.
Posted in Whathaveyou on June 10th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
Been looking forward to some new Grifter for a while now. Back in February, the band announced that they’d finished writing, and they’ve been playing periodic live shows since, so I guess the songs should be pretty well hammered out by now, including that Sabbath cover.
That and other track titles are unveiled below, as well as the news that Grifter will join a host of heavy metal royalty (and a few lesser nobles) as part of this year’s Bloodstock lineup. Other shows for the foreseeable future are included as well:
UK Rockers GRIFTER Prepare To Enter Studio
Announce Appearance at Bloodstock Fest
UK-based dirty rock n’ roll trio GRIFTER are ready to start the recording of the follow up to their self-titled 2011 debut, which will appear later in the year on Ripple Music on CD and…VINYL!!!! Guinness splatter vinyl no less!!!
The working title for the album is “The Return Of The Bearded Brethren” and will feature artwork from up and coming tattoo artist Jamie Campbell. Tracks from the album will include ‘Braggard’s Boast,’ ‘Black Gold,’ ‘It’s Not Me It’s You,’ ‘She Mountain,’ ‘Princess Leia,’ ‘Fire Water,’ ‘Paranoiac Blues,’ ‘The Return Of The Bearded Brethren,’ ‘Bow Down To The Monkey’ and a cover of Black Sabbath’s ‘Fairies Wear Boots’ that has become a popular fixture of the live set.
In other news, GRIFTER are extremely pleased to announce that they have been added to this year’s Bloodstock Festival, held at Catton Park, Derbyshire from August 8th – 11th. The band will be playing the Sophie Lancaster stage on Sunday the 11th. Also playing this year’s festival are legends such as Slayer, King Diamond, Lamb Of God, Voivod, Anthrax, Exodus, Accept, Devildriver, Death Angel and way too many more to mention here. For those details, head over towww.bloodstock.uk.com.
GRIFTER Live Dates: Friday July 26th @ Gulliver’s – Manchester w/ XII Boar, The Bendal Interlude & more Saturday July 27th @ The 2 Pigs – Cheltenham w/ Smoke Pilot and Welcome Back Delta Friday August 2nd @ The Hog And Hosper – Pontypool Saturday August 3rd – TBC Sunday August 11th – BLOODSTOCK METAL FEST @ Catton Park – Derbyshire Saturday October 19th @ The Wharf – Tavistock All Day Charity Eveny Friday November 29th – HARD ROCK HELL VII @ Holiday Park – North Wales
I had thought I’d close last week out with this recently-uploaded tour video of New York City heavy rockers Puny Human, but I never actually got to close out the week at all. Got home late Friday night, had to get up early Saturday (I’ll explain) and by Sunday, might as well hold off till Monday morning and use it to open the week instead. Come to think of it, Puny Human make a pretty fitting week-opener anyhow, what with the upbeat your-life-isn’t-totally-hopeless good times and all that, working against whatever Monday drear might otherwise be making itself known.
These guys have been on my mind anyway of late, as especially since the untimely passing of frontman Jim Starace — who holds the record in my mind for looking like he’s having the best time on stage playing stoner rock. What with the move to Massachusetts impending, looming, I’m-not-freaking-out-but-there-it-is-ing, a band like Puny Human has come to stand in for a bygone day of NYC heavy circa the middle of the last decade before everything moved to Brooklyn that I’ve been indulging in some romanticism toward. Puny Human, Atomic Number 76, hell, even The Brought Low, who continue to deliver those goods and who are on my checklist of “things I must see before I leave the NY metro area.” Also on that list, Generation Records and the Highline.
Actually, that’s the whole list. It’s a short one.
It’s a pretty crazy week coming up, at least if the three tasks I’m working on simultaneously right now are anything to go by. Keep an eye out later today for a review of the Kings Destroy record release show this past Friday, which Windhand and Clamfight also played. Later this week, reviews of Cultura Tres and Church of Misery, some Buried Treasure along the way, a Dust interview with Marky Ramone if I have time to transcribe it (a crapshoot, but I’ll do my best), some streaming sludge from Italian misanthropes Grime, a Vodun video later today, a new bio for Larman Clamor that I’m set to write probably tomorrow, and on and on. Rest assured, if I have to ignore work piling up from one or both of my jobs to get posts up, I will. Ha.
Time to get to it, though. I hope you had a great and safe weekend. Thanks again to everyone who bought a Clamfight CD during the final push over the last couple days, and I hope the bastards don’t get you down as the next few days play out — that nobody uncovers a casino about to be built five miles down the road from the house you just got an offer accepted on, etc. I’ll be checking back in a bit with that show review, so stay tuned.