Days of Rona: Jurgen van den Brand of Burning World Records

Posted in Features on May 18th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

The ongoing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the varied responses of publics and governments worldwide, and the disruption to lives and livelihoods has reached a scale that is unprecedented. Whatever the month or the month after or the future itself brings, more than one generation will bear the mark of having lived through this time, and art, artists, and those who provide the support system to help uphold them have all been affected.

In continuing the Days of Rona feature, it remains pivotal to give a varied human perspective on these events and these responses. It is important to remind ourselves that whether someone is devastated or untouched, sick or well, we are all thinking, feeling people with lives we want to live again, whatever renewed shape they might take from this point onward. We all have to embrace a new normal. What will that be and how will we get there?

Thanks to all who participate. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan

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Days of Rona: Jurgen van den Brand of Burning World Records (Haarlem, The Netherlands)

Fast “Georgetown University Application Essays” Website You've Been Looking for. Desperately looking for academic services with the question: “Who can type my essay as urgent as How have you been you dealing with this crisis as a label? As an individual? What effect has it had on your plans or creative processes?

To be honest, as most of my contacts with people are digital anyway, this crisis did not hit me on a personal level that much. Yes, my daughters stayed at home and me and my wife had to homeschool them (no talent at all in that department ;-)) but that went ok. Also I’m not the kind of person that thinks in a “what if 
 then”-kind a way. No festivals, ok, that sucks but let’s look at other ways to spend that time.. At the same time


Yes, I missed Roadburn Festival and DesertFest Berlin, which sucked mostly sales-wise. A lot of the mailorder stock would be gone after that and I could invest in new music. Which I cannot now as much as I would want to. And also I missed talking to people about music (or mostly other stuff to be honest!) and meeting the people you send records to during the year. And the sales I will never get back but hey, if that is all I guess I consider myself blessed.

I can still talk about music and other stuff of life with the two people I share an office with: Guy Pinhas (The Obsesses, Acid King, now Southern Lord Europe) and Tos Nieuwenhuizen (Sunn, Motorpsycho, Beaver, etc.). On top of things I started a new company with Guy in January, just before shit hit the fan. As we were fulfilling orders for Roadburn Records, Burning World Records and Southern Lord Europe anyway, why not do that for other bands and labels as well? We got the set up ready and it’s not used 100 percent so why not help some fellow travelers out with storage and shipping their items? Justin Broadrick has come aboard recently and also Japanese label Gurugurubrain which is run by the guys of Kikagaku Mojo does their shipping through us. And we are talking to some other people now. Nome nest omen for this venture: WeShipVinyl ;-).

That is why our online site Your Homework Help can help you not only to do the statistics homework but also request- Homework Help Bookworm. How do you feel about the public response to the outbreak where you are? From the government response to the people around you, what have you seen and heard from others?

It’s hard to think on this in only one way, as in “fuck I’m losing my job” or “where is the money coming from that we spend to support all those businesses? Are my daughters gonna have to pay that back later down the line?” I mostly fear for the musical infrastructure that was in place in Europe. All those venues and festivals were counting on countless freelancers to get the job done, may it be sound, light, bar or building the tents bands play in on festivals.

These people have no job now so will have to look elsewhere to support themselves. Some of these very good people you will never get back. Government here in The Netherlands gave some money to the cultural sector, but mostly to already heavy subsidized organization, not to the underground environment we live in and depend on.

Plus, do people wanna go to gigs again? Of course they will in spirit! But will they want to get together with 400 in a hot room before there is vaccine? I don’t think so. We will be looking at this for at least another six to 12 months. Venues and companies will go bust in the coming months that are part of our ecosystem. So after those 6-12 months there will be another period of rebuilding. I mean I have faith in the creativity of people to bounce back but still, it will take a while to recover.

http://www.healthlink.cz/?creative-writing-types - work with our scholars to receive the quality coursework following the requirements Benefit from our cheap custom research What do you think of how the music community specifically has responded? How do you feel during this time? Are you inspired? Discouraged? Bored? Any and all of it?

In the beginning I felt confused. And if you feel confused you get tired as you can not wrap your head around what is happening but you keep on trying. After a while I accepted the situation (or got used to it) and tried to look around what to do. My luck was – and is – that my overhead is not that high. My rent is ok. The records that I have in are paid for and I can decide what to buy for the store, or stop buying or releasing for a while. All the same I am eternally grateful to the people that kept on buying records in March and April. As this means I can go on buying from other labels and keep releasing records.

I also noticed that I had more time now as not a lot was happening around me to focus on releases and try and be more smart about them. Luckily, I was working with managements who feel the same. For the Zola Jesus Live At Roadburn 2018 record for instance, we had the record planned for the fall. But when we heard about Bandcamp waiving their fee for a day we jumped on it and released the album guerrilla style that day. And worked hard on the vinyl versions that we had up a week later with all variants, a poster and an industrial style shaped disc version that really fits her aesthetic. I had doubts a month ago about releasing a record in this period but the pre-sales proved me wrong. Of course Zola Jesus is a good name to go out with, but still. Next month hopefully I can do a Earthless set the same way.

Do you desperately need assistance with your essay but funds are limited? Order http://bmatovu.com/best-business-mobile-phone-planss with us and don’t sacrifice quality to get a better price What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything? What is your new normal? What have you learned from this experience, about yourself, your band, or anything?

On a personal level I learned to take more charge of what can or should happen for record. And that ideas that I have usually have some merit. And that works while talking to management of bands and other labels. It opens roads that would have been closed before. I’be been in the business now since 2008, seen a lot of stuff coming and going and if I – and with me also the guys in the office – can survive this kind of crisis I guess we’ll be around for a little longer.

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Friday Full-Length: Wino, Live at Roadburn 2009

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 17th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

This was a special moment. In 2009, Said Phd Thesis - Online Research Paper Writing Company - We Help Students To Get Professional Essays, Research Papers and up to Dissertations For Scott ‘Wino’ Weinrich played click here - choose the service, and our experienced scholars will accomplish your task supremely well Start working on your essay Roadburn Festival in Tilburg, the Netherlands, with his newly-formed You can get help on Essay On Empathy by taking a look at various websites that can help you do more with your content while being specific. It can be a Wino trio, comprised of himself on vocals/guitar, Its Only A Paper Moon Writerss. If you’ve arrived on this page, it probably means you’ve lost someone. I have no words to share other than I’m sorry. Jon Blank ( http://www.canacocampeche.org.mx/good-argumentative-essay/ Where to find cheap research paper writing services? Cheap turns out to be expensive if one is not careful. And if so did anyone think Resin) on bass and how to write a good application for a job Writing Your Personal Statement homework help for teens drama phd thesis Clutch‘s writing an admission essay Term Papers Holocaust Mistakes essay on compulsory military service should i do my homework now or later Jean-Paul Gaster on drums. It was my first Apoc3 Phd Thesis Roadburn, and Are you looking for high quality multilingual Article writing services in india ? We give you professional Free College Research Paperss for your Writing needs Wino himself was in no small part the reason I ended up making the trip, since in addition to the set with what ended up by default being thought of as Acls Dissertation Fellowship - Only HQ academic writings provided by top specialists. Why be concerned about the essay? order the needed help on the website The Wino Band, he was also playing with a reunited 'Can someone Papers On Technology for me cheap?' Yes, if you need someone to write my assignments for me, we are here to help. Place an order with us now! Saint Vitus on the main stage of the 013 venue, one of the headliners of the multi-day fest, the scope for which seemed insurmountable at the time and has only grown more so in the years since.

The Wino set took place in the Green Room — a midsize space apart from the main stage in the 013, and then one of three rooms available as part of the fest. It was the final day of the fest, then called the Afterburner, so the Bat Cave, the smallest room, had merch available but no bands playing. I always liked the Afterburner. It was comparatively mellow but you could still see something incredible and the bands all still brought their best. Wino, Blank and Gaster were a fitting example of this, and the Live at Roadburn 2009 (review here) recording that Roadburn/Burning World Records released in 2010, is the evidence. The Wino trio had issued Punctuated Equilibrium (discussed here) on Southern Lord earlier in the year, and it brought together multiple sides of the man’s unmatched pedigree, which already by then included the aforementioned Saint Vitus, The Obsessed, Spirit Caravan and The Hidden Hand, as well as the supergroup Shrinebuilder and a CV with more guest appearances than anyone could hope to count, and with Gaster on drums, well, the live record tells the tale. It’s got a groove and a flow that holds strong even as the setlist jumps from new material to old, bringing in Spirit Caravan‘s “Lost Sun Dance” late after already playing back and forth righteously between The Obsessed and The Hidden Hand, sandwichingwino live at roadburn 2009 the latter’s “Sunblood” with the former’s “Streetside” and “Streamlined.” It was a damn good show.

I watched it from the balcony in the Green Room, and though I can’t do so, I also wouldn’t want to separate the experience of having been there from listening to the recording. I mean, don’t get me wrong. If you’ve got trouble listening to Wino blow out “Yen’s Sleep” from a stage, there’s not much I can really do for you about that — it’s your loss — but they were so locked in, so tight and so utterly triumphant in playing these songs that I value the recording that much more even 11 years after the fact because it evokes that personal memory. Whether you have that connection or not, whether you were there or not, the thing still rules.

This week should’ve been Roadburn 2020. In different circumstances, I’d be in the Netherlands right now, and though the fest hasn’t had Wino there for a while at this point in any of his many incarnations, having pushed off in multiple different aesthetic directions over recent years, it’s still always something amazing to behold. I guess I’m missing it, if you want me to be honest. So, nostalgia. I’ll cop to that.

It was a beautiful and strange time. My first foreign fest. I’d never seen anything like it and though I’ve been fortunate enough to do more traveling to other places since I’m still not sure I ever have. The scope of Roadburn has become so expansive it practically takes over the town of Tilburg at this point, but it was still building its base community in 2009, though it had been running for a decade already in one form or another. It was becoming what it would become. I felt lucky to be there, and I was. I’ve never felt anything other than lucky to be there. Except maybe tired. I’ve felt tired a bunch.

Of course, Wino‘s Live at Roadburn 2009 is tainted. It was the last performance of a European tour — a true victory lap — and on May 2, 2009, Jon Blank died of a heroin overdose, just two weeks after returning home. Wino went on tour with Clutch, I remember, but was flailing and rudderless enough as a result that when he put out his first-ever acoustic album the next year, he called it Adrift (review here). A stint in the short-lived and largely forgotten Premonition 13 followed, and then reunions with Spirit Caravan and The Obsessed, the latter which started first and is continuing, Weinrich‘s time in Saint Vitus having come to an end, and acoustic performances and periodic collaborations with German singer-songwriter Conny Ochs having continued all the while. He’ll reportedly have a new acoustic album out in June on Ripple Music. I haven’t heard it yet, which makes me a little sad, but after a decade since Adrift, anticipation is high as it invariably is for just about anything in which he’s involved.

As a general rule, I’m not huge on live albums, and even this one I don’t go back to all that often, but the point it emphasizes for me is the preciousness of the moment in which it happened and the idea that whatever you’re experiencing at the time, it’s fleeting. Positive or negative, “this too shall pass,” as my grandfather was apparently wont to say (we never met). No way the Wino band knew that Roadburn would be their last show, and no way Blank knew he’d pass away less than a month later, but as we look back, it seems like that’s as much a reason as any to celebrate the time that was when it was at least as much as to mourn what came after. Life is huge, and it encompasses all that joy, all that sadness, all the mania and the up and down and side to side of existence. We’re so small and yet our brains can’t even comprehend the expanses around and within us.

As always, I hope you enjoy.

Did I leave the house this week? Yeah, I did. I tried to go to Costco, but the line was down the side and around back of the building and I threw my hands up and said “fuck it” through my face mask, got back in the car and hit Wegman’s instead. The line was shorter to get in there.

These days are long.

I’ve been sleeping late to try to mitigate. I’ve been napping to make up for lost sleep overnight — also maybe causing the lost sleep overnight? I don’t know. I’ve been having anxiety dreams. I’ve been taking half a xanax pretty much daily. I find that if I eat something when I take it, it doesn’t put me to sleep in the same way. Novelty. The Patient Mrs. made me cookies with almond and macadamia flour. There have been days where dessert is the finish line getting me through the rest of it.

I feel terrible for The Pecan. He’s up now and I can see him on the monitor dancing in his bedroom. He wants to do stuff. Go to his places, see people. We video chat with grandmas, but it’s nowhere near the same. Last weekend we drove up to Connecticut for the day. We might do the same this weekend. Fuck it, at this point. If I didn’t catch COVID-19 from the Shop-Rite in Morris Plains, I ain’t gonna catch it from The Patient Mrs.’ mom.

Today is a new The Obelisk Show on Gimme Radio. 5PM Eastern. Listen at http://gimmeradio.com

And I say that all the time, but please actually listen this time, huh? What else you got going on? It’s cool tunes and I recorded the voice tracks in my living room with the kid and The Patient Mrs. in the background, so it’s a mess, but it’s a fun mess, so yeah, please tune in.

More rona stuff next week. More of everything next week. I’m totally overwhelmed by all of it, which I guess is my preferred scenario, but speaking of that, it’s time for me to go grab The Pecan from upstairs, change his diaper and start the day. Another day. Another day in lockdown. Might go to Lowe’s later to get a five-gallon jug of water. We hydrate like bastards in this house. It’s the only way to be.

Next week: album streams from Lord Fowl and Gaffa Ghandi, a video premiere from The Earth Below, more rona than I can handle, an Elder review and whatever else I can throw together. It’ll be fun. It’ll be more than I can handle, which is the idea. It’ll occupy my brain in troubling ways. I love that.

Thanks for reading. Hope you’re well and staying safe. Oh, there ain’t no roneys on me.

Great and safe weekend. FRM.

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Sigiriya Announce New Album Maiden Mother Crone; Premiere “Cwn Annwn”

Posted in audiObelisk on January 20th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

SIGIRIYA

Welsh rockers of time and space Sigiriya will release their third full-length, Maiden Mother Crone, this Spring through Burning World Records. By the time it arrives, it will be their first offering of any sort in six years, and in addition to introducing drummer Rhys Miles to the fold, the album collects eight tracks for a 45-minute run of of-the-earth-but-nonetheless-ethereal rolling grooves that seem to draw as much from the mythological as from the world around them in presence and theme alike. Early cuts like “Cwn Annwn,” “Tau Ceti” and “Peace of My Mind” establish Sigiriya circa 2020 as a band afraid neither to touch ground nor sky, and the spaciousness in the echoing vocals of Matt “Pipes” Williams (also Suns of Thunder) only adds breadth to the fluid distortion and heft of Stu O’Hara‘s guitar and Paul Bidmead‘s bass.

The latter two, of course, are alumni of Swansea-based troupe Acrimony — the bulk of whose studio work Burning World recently remastered and issued as the boxed set Chronicles of Wode (review here) — and though when Sigiriya started out with their 2011 debut, Return to Earth (review here), their mission seemed to further that band’s rather significant legacy, subsequent years have found them pulling in a new direction, and Maiden Mother Crone continues that thread. Part of it is sheer lineup. Matt Williams — who also did some recording on the new album, while Richard Whittaker mixed and mastered — took the frontman spot from Dorian Walters, who also had been in Acrimony, and sure enough, Rhys Miles comes to Sigiriya in place of Darren Ivey, who’d also been in the prior outfit. Some change of dynamic, then, seems inevitable as half the makeup of the band has changed from the first album to the third, but O’Hara‘s guitar tone is a signature element and recognizable throughout Maiden Mother Crone, whether it’s the crunching riff in opener “Mantis” or the shorter “Dark Call” later on, which seems to get swallowed up by the sheer overload of dense, hairy fuzz.

Whatever familiar elements persist, and however welcome they may be — because, frankly, I’ll take that guitar sound anytime it wants to show up — Sigiriya‘s sonic identity has never sounded more their own and more distinct than it does Sigiriya Maiden Mother Cronethroughout Maiden Mother Crone. After the resonant cast and grit of “Seeking Eden” and “Dark Call”‘s push, the record’s two longest tracks take hold in succession, with “Arise (Darkness Died Today)” referencing the band’s second album, 2014’s Darkness Died Today (review here, also discussed here) as it digs into suitably moodier vibes and touches on some vocal harmonies from Williams along with a fullness of sound that extends even to Miles‘ crash cymbals, the song still relatively straightforward in structure and, at 6:21, not much longer than “Cwn Annwn” or “Peace of My Mind” back on side A, but just an extra touch more atmospheric as to justify its position as the penultimate cut ahead of 8:21 closer “Crushed by the Weight of the Sky.”

It is a particular credit to Miles and Bidmead as the rhythm section that Maiden Mother Crone rolls with such a nodding flow across its span the drums and bass allow for the psychedelic, airier flourish in the guitar as well as the dead-ahead shove when that comes up, but they show a steadiness of pace that isn’t to be overlooked when it comes to how immersive the record ends up being. That’s true even in the up-front rockers “Mantis,” “Cwn Annwn” and “Tau Ceti” — the latter of which should be enough to sate anyone’s Acrimony fix if the box set didn’t do it — but comes to the forefront starkly at the halfway point of “Crushed by the Weight of the Sky” as well as Miles switches to timekeeping with his crash cymbal. It seems like such a simple moment, such an easy thing for a drummer to do, but it is just right in serving the purpose of the song’s overarching groove, and though Williams soon enough begins the next verse/hook and O’Hara‘s guitar will after six minutes in take the reins and lead the band through a tempo kick as they build to the organ-or-at-least-organ-sound-laced last crescendo, of which the band take full advantage, not letting the opportunity pass to pay off both the track in question and the album as a whole.

Six years between records is a long time. That’s double the stretch between their first and second albums. And it’s not in their nature stylistically to sound “refreshed,” but Sigiriya do come across as vital throughout Maiden Mother Crone, and as they craft their folkloric place within the greater sphere of the UK heavy underground, they do so by stepping further out of the rather significant shadow of O’Hara and Bidmead‘s former outfit and into their own light. Will it be six years before another Sigiriya album surfaces? Maybe. Hell if I know. But if it is, Maiden Mother Crone shows clearly that Sigiriya are able to translate all that time into sonic growth on the part of the band. Like the songs themselves, that is not to be taken lightly.

You can stream the premiere of “Cwn Annwn” on the player below. More PR wire details from Burning World Records follow. Preorders and all that coming soon.

Please enjoy:

Shine on…

Welsh mountain men and valley crawlers Sigiriya are the first to admit to their faults – and yes, they got it wrong. The darkness hadn’t died. The eternal turn is undeniable. After the light of every day comes a veil of night, throwing real-world shadows into the soul of the Light Seeker.

Personal trauma, mental and physical health issues, and even new drummer Rhys Miles (who replaced Darren “TDB” Ivey before the writing of ‘Maiden…’) staring down the grim Reaper directly, have taken their toll on Sigiriya – ‘Maiden Mother Crone’ has been a tough album to harness.

Recorded with Adam Howell at UWTSD Studios in Swansea (with additional work by Matt Williams at Sunnyvale Studios), and mixed and mastered at The Bridge Studios & FX London by the lord of heaviness Richard Whittaker, it’s a monolith of light at the end of the tunnel, a rage against the system, a modern myth and a call to atavism.

‘Maiden Mother Crone’ is undeniably heavier, slower and darker in places, yet in others it soars and roars higher and brighter than ever. More mature in its focus, sound and integration of lyrics and influences than previous releases, with ‘Maiden Mother Crone’, Sigiriya shine onwards through this eternally turning cosmos.

Tracklisting:
1. Mantis
2. Cwn Annwn
3. Tau Ceti
4. Peace of My Mind
5. Seeking Eden
6. Dark Call
7. Arise (Darkness Died Today)
8. Crushed by the Weight of the Sky

Sigiriya are:
Matt ‘Pipes’ Williams (vocals)
Rhys Miles (drums)
Stu O’Hara (guitar)
Paul ‘Mead’ Bidmead (bass)

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Review & Track Premiere: Acrimony, Chronicles of Wode

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on November 26th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

acrimony chronicles of wode

[Click play above to stream ‘Million Year Summer’ from Acrimony’s new remaster box set, Chronicles of Wode. It starts streaming Dec. 7, preorders are here starting today and ship out in mid-Jan. In the interest of full disclosure, I wrote the liner notes for the box set and was compensated for that work. I have not been compensated for this review, and frankly, given the chance to premiere a remastered Acrimony track and an excuse to write about these albums, there was no chance I wasn’t going to jump on it.]

Chronicles of Wode is a 3CD box set from Burning World Records that brings together the bulk of the discography of Welsh heavy rockers Acrimony. It includes their two full-lengths, 1994’s Hymns to the Stone (discussed here) and 1997’s Tumuli Shroomaroom (discussed here), both with new artwork by Jimbob Isaac (also of Taint and Hark)”, as well as a third disc of off-album tracks, some of which were previously collected on 2007’s Bong On – Live Long! compilation and some which were not, including a yet-unheard Doom cover, and so on. Bringing these offerings together is something noteworthy in itself — the band’s influence over UK heavy rock was and is formidable, and they were genuinely ahead of their time when it came to using repetition and jammy vibes as a means to hone a heavy psychedelic feel while retaining a metallic energy beneath — but crucially, Chronicles of Wode gives all of these Acrimony tracks a much-needed remastering, and they’ve never sounded so vibrant. That’s particularly true of Tumuli Shroomaroom, but while Hymns to the Stone is more dated in terms of its basic production, that’s more of a fact of how the record was originally made, and it seems no less integral to preserve that than it does to give Acrimony‘s catalog the detailing it has long since earned.

There’s a balance to be struck between the two sides, of course, and Chronicles of Wode seems to find it in the crunch of “Leaves of Mellow Grace,” the opener of Hymns to the Stone, which rolls out its nod like a clarion, finding Acrimony — the five-piece of vocalist Dorian Walters, guitarists Stu O’Hara and Lee Davies, bassist Paul Bidmead and drummer Darren Ivey — immediately putting the groove first in a way that few acts at the time had understood how to do. Their influences were varied, from ’70s rock to trance techno, but their riffs were undeniably heavy, with lyrics exploring the isolation of their hometown and the same kind of disaffection that once launched Black Sabbath to the outer reaches of doom from a blues rock beginning. Acrimony started out more as death metal or at least death-doom, but Hymns to the Stone was a point of discovery for them in terms of claiming their identity, and whether it’s the nodding pub-homage “The Inn” or the myth-creation they engaged with “Urabalaboom,” the sonic drawl and spacey push of “Spaced Cat #6” or the glorious noise-wash jam of “Whatever” ahead of brash closer “Cosmic AWOL,” Hymns to the Stone is a record that has been persistently undervalued, not just for what it set in motion in terms of Acrimony‘s all-too-short tenure as a band, but on the sheer merits of its material.

Rest assured, part of the reason Hymns to the Stone is undervalued is because it exists largely in the shadow of its follow-up. Clocking in at a whopping 65 minutes — prime CD era in 1997 — and originally released through Peaceville Records, Tumuli Shroomaroom is a legitimate heavy rock classic. Its production was clearer, its purpose was clearer and it took the blow-the-doors-down promise shown throughout Hymns to the Stone and brought it to a point of full realization throughout extended pieces like “Motherslug (The Mother of All Slugs),” “Heavy Feather” and “Firedance,” not to mention the nine-minute opener, “Hymns to the Stone,” a title-track for the release before. Go figure. By ’97, Acrimony‘s sense of world-creation was becoming clearer, and their songs — not all of them, but definitely some — had started telling a story beyond the riffs and nods. Of course, Tumuli Shroomaroom had and still has plenty of that too in “Million Year Summer,” “Vy,” “Find the Path” and “The Bud Song” — the arguable “meat” of the album in its post-opener beginning and the middle of the nine-song tracklist — but even amid “The Bud Song”‘s ultra-stoner janga-janga shuffle there’s psychedelic flourish building on that shown at the outset of the song, and Acrimony‘s adventurous sensibility never really dissipates. It’s just presented in dynamic fashion, and they use it to various ends throughout.

And that shows up not just in the odds and ends of percussion and didgeridoo and guitar effects, echo, etc., but in the various structures of of the tracks themselves. The same was true of Hymns to the Stone, if nascent, but Tumuli Shroomaroom realized these impulses in a new way that, even as a stoner rock underground was flourishing in the UK, was pretty rare. Some of the roots of that aural diversity are shown on the disc of extra tracks included in the box — unlike the two album, it’s not available separately to my knowledge — with the aforementioned take on Doom‘s “Exploitation” and the Status Quo cover of “O Baby” that was featured on Bong On – Live Long! alongside raw pieces like “Tumuli” and “100 New Gods” and “Timebomb!!!” and “Earthchild Inferno,” here pushed to the opening position as some of the cuts from the original compilation were cut, presumably for time. These songs have also been remastered and are worth hearing on both an academic level as further context for the band and just on their own merits — I don’t know what Burning World is charging, but “O Baby” alone is a worthy argument in favor of it — fitting well as a complement to the two albums that are obviously the showcase pieces of Chronicles of Wode and giving fans something more to dig into even as the records themselves invite rediscovery.

One also can’t ignore the fact that since Tumuli Shroomaroom was last reissued in 2007 by Leaf Hound Records — to the best of my knowledge and a bit to my surprise, Hymns to the Stone has never been reissued — an entire generation of heavy rockers has emerged and thrived on the ground that Acrimony helped break during their time. That may have been part of the motivation for four-fifths of the original band to come back together in 2010 as SigiriyaDavies was in Lifer and has since moved on to Woven Man — but either way, the important point here is that there’s no level on which these two full-lengths don’t deserve the care and treatment they’re given through the presentation of Chronicles of Wode, and anyone previously unfamiliar with Acrimony‘s work who takes it on is only going to get a more complete picture of from where modern heavy rock stems, especially in the UK, but also across the broader international underground. For prior fans? Well, it’s just a delight, pure and simple. Like visiting old friends.

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Wolf Blood Release Limited 12″ Single Tsunami / Home; Announce Recording Plans

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 3rd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

wolf blood

July, July, July. That’s when Minnesota riffers Wolf Blood head back into the studio to complete work on their second album. The as-yet-untitled offering will follow some four years behind the band’s incredibly well received self-titled debut (review here), which came out through Burning World in Europe and Outer Battery in the US — which is no minor shakes for a group marking their first release. As far as endorsements go, those are two good ones to have.

Before the new album arrives, maybe as a refresher or a lead-in or just because they happened to have them laying around — whatever gets it done — Wolf Blood have released the new two-songer single Tsunami / Home and set it up for streaming now and preorders for the month of May for the upcoming 12″ edition, limited in number and all that good stuff. The art, as you can see below, is pretty right on, and the sound of the two songs is duly huge and a fervent reminder of why I was so looking forward to hearing what this band did next.

Have at it:

wolf blood tsunami home

Minneapolis band WOLF BLOOD are heading back into the studio this July to finish their long awaited 2nd album. To tide fans over till then they’ll release a limited run 12” single for the haunting track “Tsunami” on colored vinyl. Backed by the crushing brand new song “Home”, this will be strictly limited to 200 copies. Pre-orders start May 1st through Qrates.com and run until May 30th. Stream both songs at wolfblood666.bandcamp.com starting May 1st.

Formed in a dank basement during one of the coldest winters on record in Duluth, Minnesota, guitarist Mike Messina and drummer Jake Paulsrud (Dirty Horse/Dad’s Acid) started writing psycho-sludge experiments that sounded too stoned to be metal, and too baneful to be indie-rock. They recruited renown hard-core guitar sorceress Mindy Johnson (The Keep Aways) and magi-roots bassist Luke to flesh-out the menacing sound, and Wolf Blood came to life.

Wolf Blood is:
Mike Messina – guitar
Jake Paulsrud – drums/vocals
Mindy Johnson – guitar/vocals
Luke – bass

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Wolf Blood, Tsunami / Home (2018

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SubRosa Premiere “The Mirror” from SubRosa Subdued: Live at Roadburn 2017

Posted in audiObelisk on November 22nd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

subrosa

SubRosa will release SubDued: Live at Roadburn 2017 on Dec. 1 through Burning World and Roadburn Records. Today I have the extreme pleasure of hosting the official premiere of ‘The Mirror,’ and as the entire album has already been reviewed here, I thought I might just take a minute to speak about the experience of seeing the Salt Lake City outfit play in this context. Won’t take a minute.

Het Patronaat is a revamped church included as a venue for the Roadburn festival in Tilburg, the Netherlands. It has stained glass windows, a high, vaulted ceiling, and hardwood floors. subrosa-subdued-live-at-roadburn-2017When it’s empty, before a band goes on, it feels cavernous. Massive. When it’s full and you’re pressed up against the stage, it can be as intimate as the smallest of Roadburn‘s venues. You’re right there. The band’s right there. And, oh yeah, there are about 700 other people in the room with you, but if you don’t turn around and look, it’s easy enough to pretend you’re in your own world. That’s basically how I watched SubRosa play their ‘SubDued’ set at this year’s Roadburn.

They’d been on the Main Stage the prior afternoon, playing their most recent album, the brilliant For this We Fought the Battle of Ages (review here), in its entirety, but the concept behind ‘SubDued’ being that they’d strip away much of the distortion in favor of a mostly-acoustic presentation made it unmissable from my point of view. The setlist was older tracks — nothing off the latest record — and highlights like “Whippoorwill,” “The Inheritance” and “Cosey Mo” received new life through their revamped arrangements, the focus on meditative melody, raw rhythmic sway and a masterful presentation that turned deeply-weighted goth-tinged post-metal into exploratory neofolk no less complete in its realization. I don’t think any single moment emphasized this so much as when they played “The Mirror” as the second to last song in the set.

In terms of the arrangement, “The Mirror” was as minimal as SubRosa got: voice, drumsticks against microphone stands and a single floor tom for percussion, and that’s it. The violins, flutes, bass, acoustic and electric guitar, and samples/other noises that filled out other inclusions were set aside. Rebecca Vernon led Sarah Pendleton and Kim Pack in harmony as she and drummer Andy Patterson — situated behind a front-line of players that also included bassist Levi Hanna and guest flutist/vocalist Kelly Schilling — kept time together in that seemingly simple fashion. subrosa subdued (photo jj koczan)It was beautiful and affecting in kind.

The song itself tells the story of a woman who, by her own admission, “took the easy road.” She gets married and has five kids in five years because that’s what you’re supposed to do where she’s from, but when her husband leaves her, she’s alone and poor and full of regret. In the end, she blames not him for the affair she had, but herself for not seeing the error of the lifepath she chose: the line, “I just look in the mirror and I find I only have myself to blame” stands out in a verse preceding the ultimate moral lesson of, “You gotta push against the current to get somewhere.” It’s a powerful sentiment, powerfully presented.

I’ll admit I wasn’t familiar with “The Mirror” before seeing it performed at Het Patronaat this past April. It comes from SubRosa‘s 2006 demo/EP The Worm has Turned and to my knowledge hasn’t featured on any subsequent release. This would seem to make its inclusion on SubDued: Live at Roadburn 2017 all the more special, since it’s a standout and something kind of exclusive to this form, this time, and this moment for the band. It certainly felt that way when they were playing it, and as I watched and listened, I became utterly entranced in the melody and the storytelling in a way that hasn’t left my mind in the half-year since. I feel fortunate for having been there to witness it and know that, in fact, I was.

Enjoy the premiere of “The Mirror” below, followed by some more preliminaries from the PR wire:

First ever live album by Subrosa after 5 studio albums on labels as Profound Lore and I Hate Records.

Recorded at the prestigious Roadburn Festival 2017 in a packed Patronaat. Mixed and mastered by Andy Patterson of Subrosa.

Vinyl version will follow in early 2018.

TRACKLIST
1. Whippoorwill
2. Borrowed Time Borrowed Eyes
3. Sugar Creek
4. The Inheritance
5. Cosey Mo
6. The Mirror
7. No Safe Harbor

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Godflesh to Release Post Self Nov. 17; New Song Streaming; Streetcleaner Live at Roadburn 2011 Reissue out Dec. 1

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 1st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

godflesh

As Godflesh make ready to perform Streetcleaner in full this coming Sunday night, Nov. 5, at Warsaw in Brooklyn to mark the 20th anniversary of Hospital Productions, the legendary Justin K. Broadrick-led outfit are preparing to unveil two new releases. First is a new studio outing titled Post Self, which is a follow-up for 2014’s return long-player A World Lit Only by Fire (review here), and second is a CD reissue Dec. 1 on Burning World/Roadburn Records of the 2013 live outing, Streetcleaner Live at Roadburn 2011, capturing the performance six years ago that basically kicked off the duo’s resurgence, Broadrick and Benny Green taking the stage together and laying waste to the entire fest. I was there. It was a work of technology advanced enough to be considered magic by my feeble brain.

The title-track of Post Self is streaming now and the PR wire brings the latest on both releases:

Godflesh share the title track of their new album, Post Self; the legendary duo’s first album in three years, due out on November 17th

Godflesh Streetcleaner Live At Roadburn (CD) out Dec. 1

Industrial metal pioneers Godflesh will release their new album Post Self on November 17th via Justin K. Broadrick’s Avalanche Recordings on CD, digital and LP formats, with a cassette version incoming on Hospital Productions. Over two years in the making, Post Self explores a different side of Godflesh, taking in their formative influences to conjure something informed by late 70’s/early 80’s post-punk and industrial music. The album deals with themes of anxiety, depression, fear, mortality, and paternal/maternal relationships.

The previous Godflesh album, A World Lit Only By Fire, was released in October 2014.

Post Self track listing
1. Post Self
2. Parasite
3. No Body
4. Mirror Of Finite Light
5. Be God
6. The Cyclic End
7. Pre Self
8. Mortality Sorrow
9. In Your Shadow
10. The Infinite End

GODFLESH performed their seminal debut full-length album, 1989’s “Streetcleaner”, in its entirety at the 2011 edition of the Roadburn festival on Thursday, April 14 at the 013 venue in Tilburg, Holland. In addition, founding members Justin Broadrick and Benny Green played the “Tiny Tears” EP, which was conceived as part of the overall “Streetcleaner” vision, in full as well.

– Mastered specially for cd by James Plotkin.
– Originally released as a double album on Roadburn Festival Records in 2013. Now for the first time out on cd.

Tracklist
1. LIKE RATS (LIVE) 05:34
2. CHRISTBAIT RISING (LIVE) 07:46
3. PULP (LIVE) 04:21
4. DREAM LONG DEAD (LIVE) 05:36
5. HEADDIRT (LIVE) 04:20
6. DEVASTATOR / MIGHTY TRUST KRUSHER (LIVE) 09:40
7. LIFE IS EASY (LIVE) 04:25
8. STREETCLEANER (LIVE) 06:47
9. LOCUST FURNACE (LIVE) 04:36
10. TINY TEARS (LIVE) 03:21
11. WOUND (LIVE) 03:12
12. DEADHEAD (LIVE) 04:06
13. SUCTION (LIVE) 08:48

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Godflesh, “Post Self”

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SubRosa, Subdued: Live at Roadburn 2017: Finding Safe Harbor

Posted in Reviews on October 31st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

subrosa subdued live at roadburn 2017

On the first day, SubRosa took to the Main Stage of the 013 venue in Tilburg to play their latest album in its entirety. And it was early in an afternoon and night of excellent performances, but seeing the Salt Lake City, Utah, outfit give my 2016 Album of the Year, the Profound Lore-issued For this We Fought the Battle of Ages (review here), a complete runthrough was still a highlight of the entirety of my experience at the 2017 Roadburn festival (review here). It was something special. The next day, across the alley at Het Patronaat, the band played once again, but this time for a set that became even more of a landmark in my mind for the long weekend.

Given the billing of ‘SubDued,’ it was SubRosa — the core lineup of guitarist/vocalist Rebecca Vernon, violinists/vocalists Sarah Pendleton and Kim Pack, bassist Levi Hanna and drummer/noisemaker Andy Patterson joined for a second time by flutist/vocalist Kelly Schilling of Denver’s Dreadnought — arranged with everyone up front in a line across the stage save for Patterson who was situated behind with a percussion and sampler setup, seated, facing the audience directly. Surrounded by stained glass windows, the high cathedral ceiling and the hardwood floors of ‘The Church,’ as Het Patronaat has also come to be known — appropriately, since it is one — it felt like a ceremony unto itself.

I stood at the very front of the stage and watched as SubRosa reinterpreted songs from 2013’s More Constant than the Gods, 2011’s No Help for the Mighty Ones (review here), 2008’s Strega and the preceding 2006 demo, The Worm has Turned — leaving the performance of their fourth full-length the day before as it was, but boldly recontextualizing past material into a mostly-acoustic neofolk rife with atmosphere, emotion and progressive sonic insight.

Simply put, it was one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, at Roadburn or anywhere else.

Taking that into account, I have to admit there’s just about no way I can be properly impartial when it comes to assessing the Subdued: Live at Roadburn 2017 live album released through Burning World and Roadburn Records. None. I was too close to it — literally — and as the band began their just-under-an-hour-long set with the graceful unfolding of “Whippoorwill,” too consumed by the immediate breadth of what they were doing to maintain any proper distance from the experience. I think most who were there to see it would likely say the same. It would be like being impartial about a sunrise whose warmth cast away months of frigid temperatures. Impartiality about a first meal after days of starving. It was a time for worship, for communion, not equanimity, and “Whippoorwill” was only the start.

One can hear that on the recording. With Patterson thudding away behind, “Borrowed Time, Borrowed Eyes” emphasizes its rhythmic punctuation as much as Vernon‘s vocal melody, recalling some of the sludgy churn of the original that led off No Help for the Mighty Ones, but with more of a reliance on the strings to fill out an arrangement still given heft by Hanna‘s bass, SubRosa set up the harmonies later in the song for the repeated lines “How long must my journey go?,” and giving way to “Sugar Creek,” which might be the most radical arrangement shift of the entire set, taking the original opener of Strega, pulling out the guitar heft and drums and replacing them with electronic beats, manipulated noise and violins on a five-minute linear build that offers rare patience and still finds a way to capture the band’s underlying emotional intensity that was present even in their earliest work. It marks a transition as well into a crucial point in the set, wherein “The Inheritance” from No Help for the Mighty Ones and “Cosey Mo” from More Constant than the Gods pair together to fully embody the ‘subdued’ experience in texture and arrangement.

subrosa

Over minimal guitar, Vernon‘s solo vocals on “The Inheritance” are soon joined by companion harmonies, and sparse percussion echoes behind, marking the path as it unfolds. Strings arrive and the arrangement builds on itself, recedes for another verse and builds again, arriving at the line, “We’re in the shadow of a dying world,” which the pervasive melancholy of “Cosey Mo” seems to bring to life all the more. Both cuts hover around the eight-minute mark and become a dark kind of gothic Americana with the treatment they’re given on Subdued: Live at Roadburn 2017, the level of depth particularly on the latter highlighting Patterson‘s work in mixing and mastering as well as on percussion. “Cosey Mo” finds a level of balance and emotional resonance by its halfway point that feels like the apex of the performance as a whole, and SubRosa continue to ride that progression fluidly, but it’s ultimately “The Mirror” that serves as the moment of their greatest impact.

With a rhythm created by hitting drumsticks on mic stands complemented by Patterson behind, “The Mirror” weaves a story of rural disaffection — “Got married in the winter/Gave birth in the summer/In five years time had five little ones…” — set to the most gorgeous vocal harmonies here present from Vernon, Pendleton and Pack, who deep-dive into folk-ballad traditionalism with what I’d gladly argue is the boldest and bravest abandon shown on the release. The song, which originally appeared on The Worm has Turned, is the oldest of the material to make it into the set and yet could not fit more perfectly, casting off the complexity of strings, samples, bass, guitar and percussion in favor of an approach as organic as possible: raw human voice.

They thank Roadburn Creative Director Walter Hoeijmakers when they’re done and then launch into “No Safe Harbor” from More Constant than the Gods to close the set. It would be easy for it to be an afterthought, but with Schilling‘s flute added, SubRosa instead push further into the scope established by “The Inheritance” and “Cosey Mo,” finding resolution in a series of thudding crashes that, even in this setting, are viscerally weighted. To call it a suitable ending undercuts the beauty that actually holds sway for the duration of the track itself, or the obvious care put into the presentation, which like the original, ends with a chaos of rumble and strings ceding ground to a single line of percussion. Violins circle around single pulled notes on bass, and whether taken on an ambient level or in terms of the pure aural resonance, it leaves the band with just about nowhere else to go. So they end.

I have been to nine editions of the Roadburn festival. Each year offers at least one landmark performance — the one for which the festival is ultimately remembered. I don’t know if the effect could possibly be the same for someone who wasn’t there to witness it — and it’s precisely for that reason that I consider myself too close to it to be properly impartial, as noted above — but having witnessed SubRosa ‘SubDued’ and now having heard Subdued: Live at Roadburn 2017, it only further cements this set as that in my mind for 2017. It’s been six months now since and I continue to feel affected by what they did on that Het Patronaat stage, and with these tracks documenting it as gorgeously and as essentially as they do, I can only hope that will sustain for years to come. It is a reminder of the power a live performance can have and, again, as rich an experience as I’ve ever had in that regard.

SubRosa, “No Safe Harbor” live at Roadburn 2017

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