Posted in Whathaveyou on February 5th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
The below image isn’t the W. Ralph Walters cover art for Headless Kross‘ upcoming sophomore full-length, Volumes, but it’s working on a similar theme, so I figured close enough. The three-track LP will be issued April 1 by Black Bow Records on vinyl and tape and Burning World Records on CD, and I don’t know how but the words “Chris Fielding at Skyhammer Studio” seem to have become interchangeable with the phrase “very, very heavy.” Funny how that works.
If you’ve never checked out Headless Kross before, you might want to head over to their Bandcamp, where their 2011 Bear debut LP, as well as their 2012 Demises EP and splits with War Iron and Lazarus Blackstar are all available for free download. That seems to be everything up to the new album, which, you know, isn’t out yet.
Aside from giving their music away for free, they also get points for the 30 Rock reference. See if you can spot it.
Burning World had this update:
Burning World Records to release HEADLESS KROSS – Volumes
Formed in 2011, Glasgow’s Headless Kross combine monolithic riffs, mind bending psychedelia and crust tinged freak-outs to give them their unique sound.
Frequently described as ‘psychedelic doom’, swirling phasers and repetitive pounding rhythms give way to downtuned heaviness in a way that is somehow both tight and loose at the same time.
Headless Kross recorded their latest album ‘Volumes’ in July 2014 with Chris Fielding at Skyhammer Studio. This is due for release in early 2015 on Black Bow (vinyl and cassette) and Burning World (CD and download), with an amazing painted cover by US artist W. Ralph Walters. The album contains 3 gargantuan songs exploring the well-worn theme of nature reasserting herself in an incredibly violent way.
‘Volumes’ is released on vinyl via Black Bow Records on April 1st 2015, while the compact disc pressing will be handled by Burning World Records.
Tracklisting: 1. The Rural Juror 2. Who is This Who is Coming 3. Even the Destroyed Things Have Been Destroyed
Posted in Reviews on January 23rd, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Dual-guitar riff excavators Slomatics released their fourth full-length, Estron, last year on Burning World Records, and for those who’d worship at an altar of tone, it makes a suitable icon. The Belfast, Northern Ireland, trio roll out sans bass but want nothing for low end, Chris Couzens and David Majury contributing tectonic force on songs like “Tunnel Dragger” and “Lost Punisher” while drummer/vocalist Marty Harvey (also of War Iron) sets the lurch in motion, his voice echoing deep from within the band’s well-honed morass. Songs are spacious but consuming and full, and on the 38-minute offering there’s really only one moment of letup: the two-minute ambient interlude “Red Dawn” that precedes closer “The Carpenter” (also the longest track at 10:26). Beyond that, Slomatics offer few opportunities (some, but few) to let the air back into their listeners’ lungs, and that’s clearly the idea. Estron marked not only their fourth long-player, but also their first decade in the band, Couzens and Majury having started Slomatics in 2004 and Harvey joining in 2011 between their breakout split with Conan (review here) and 2012’s A Hocht full-length, released on Head of Crom. In that decade, and in any case well before they got around to Estron, Couzens and Majury figured out what they wanted from their assault, and Estron bears the fruit of their hammering-out. Though slow-moving, the album is fluid front to back, and it thanks in no small part to Harvey‘s vocals, it has a sense of melody to complement its crushing, nigh-on-claustrophobic tonality.
The nod is persistent, and even on the airier “And Yet it Moves” — something you might say about the band’s sound itself — you wouldn’t be wrong to call it brutal, but there’s a human presence in the material as well, and I have a hard time thinking that as Slomatics wreak all this aural havoc they’re not also having a really good time doing it. That’s not to say there’s some element of irony here, just that Majury, Couzens and Harvey seem to revel in the harsh riffscape they create. And why not? “And Yet it Moves” is a highlight for the interplay of lead and rhythm lines, but even when Couzens and Majury are locked into simultaneous plod-riffing à la “Futurian” or the opening “Troglorite,” the output is righteous in its heaviness — the opener particularly indebted to Floor but darker in atmosphere — and exciting in its delivery. Estron works cleanly in two sides, four tracks on side A, three on side B, and the transitions between songs are direct bleeds, usually via feedback, but the resultant over-arching flow isn’t to be understated, and on the CD version, even “Lost Punisher,” which would close out side A of the vinyl, moves right into “And Yet it Moves,” which would otherwise come after the flip to side B. It’s emblematic of Estron being a well-thought-out release, rather than a happenstance collection of badass riffs, and it serves to inform about Slomatics approach as a whole. Their songwriting is likewise purposeful, whether it’s the hook of “Troglorite” or the sparse, minimal opening of “The Carpenter” that emerges from “Red Dawn” and builds to a gradual head over the track’s first four minutes. In between, Slomatics offer variety of pace, shift between levels of aggression, and keep a strong sense of atmosphere in moments like the midsection break of “Tunnel Dragger,” which drones out a hypnotic ambience before moving back in for the next round of pummeling.
And make no mistake, many of Estron‘s finest stretches arise from those pummeling moments, be it the shorter barrage on “Futurian” and the CD-centerpiece “Lost Punisher” or the album’s immersive second half, with “And Yet it Moves,” “Red Dawn” and “The Carpenter.” Either way Slomatics go, they carefully manage a balance of heft and spaciousness throughout while sounding anything but careful. It’s a deceptive record in that one might put it on for the first time, hear Couzens and Majury‘s tones and say, “Okay, I got it,” but though the impact of the guitars is a big part of Slomatics‘ approach, it’s really just one piece of a larger, more dynamic picture, working in concert with the drums and vocals, the largesse, the periodic, well-placed breaks and so on for a complete and engrossing effect. Estron is remarkably cohesive even from a band who’ve been around for a decade, and while Slomatics have clearly established a wheelhouse for themselves in which to work, what they bring to that context is a sense of progression and a willfulness to create a whole album, not just a roundup of songs or parts. In this, they are resoundingly successful. Worth noting as well that Couzens, Majury and Harvey have already issued a follow-up to Estron in the form of a split single with Floridian tone-and-crashers Holly Hunt, who make a fitting companion. It would seem Slomatics are content to keep moving forward and pushing their sound along with them — and yet it moves… — and that is an ethic worth celebrating, because honestly, if they wanted to, they could probably just sit around, bang out cheapo riff grooves and get by just on the badassery of their tones. That they aspire to and are able to create something deeper and more resonant is ultimately what stands them out from any like-minded peers.
Posted in audiObelisk on August 27th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster
Among the many Main Stage acts on the Roadburn lineup this year, few bands left the kind of impression Richmond, Virginia’s Windhand seemed to leave. After their set, which was on the third day of the fest proper, Saturday, April 12, you could hear their name being talked about for the rest of the evening outside the 013 in Tilburg: “Dude, did you see Windhand?” The five-piece had obviously made an impression with their 2013 Relapse label debut, Soma(review here), and they followed that up with a blistering live set that, come the fall, will be available as an exclusive vinyl release on Burning World Records and Outer Battery Records.
The opener from that set, recorded and mixed by Marcel van de Vondervoort and mastered by James Plotkin, was “Orchard,” but that’s only if you want to be technical about it. Really, the opener for the set was about a solid minute of gut-wrenching feedback from which the initial riff eventually oozed. Soon enough, Windhand are underway with the track’s doomly lurch, but they’re barely there at all before you can hear the audience get into it on the recording. Roadburn may have been a stop for Windhand on a longer tour, one that seems nearly endless with the road-time the band puts in — they’re out again in the States next month (dates below) — but after listening to the captured results, there can be little question it was a landmark both for them and for those who got to see them play.
If you were there, Live at Roadburn 2014is a chance to relive that moment. If you weren’t there, it’s still about as quality a live recording of Windhand as you’re going to get, so I don’t really see how you could lose. The LP is available now to preorder, and you can hear “Orchard” on the player below. Please enjoy:
Windhand will release the vinyl-only Live at Roadburn 2014 late September/October on Burning World Records (EU preorder here) and Outer Battery Records (US preorder here). The pressing is limited to 400 copies in the US. Windhand also head out on tour starting Sept. 4 with All Them Witches. Dates follow:
Windhand tour with All Them Witches: 9/4 Baltimore, MD – Ottobar 9/5 Pittsburgh, PA – 31st St Pub 9/6 Akron, OH – Musica 9/7 Columbus, OH – The Basement 9/9 Iowa City, IA – Gabe’s 9/10 Chicago, IL – Cobra Lounge 9/11 Minneapolis, MN – Triple Rock 9/12 Milwaukee, WI – Metal Grill 9/13 Ferndale, MI – Loving Touch 9/14 Toronto, ON – Coda 9/16 Ottawa, ON – Cafe Dekcuf 9/17 Montreal, QC – Petit Campus 9/18 Cambridge, MA – Middle East (upstairs) 9/19 Providence, RI – AS220 9/20 Brooklyn, NY – Saint Vitus Bar
Posted in audiObelisk on August 26th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster
The bell of the ride counts out a measure and soon enough the guitar starts in on “Witch,” the opening track from Wolf Blood‘s self-titled debut. Right away, something just seems bent. It’s like the sound is contorted somehow. It’s an otherworldly sensation and it continues throughout the Duluth, Minnesota, four-piece’s six-track offering, which follows through with a loosely cultish approach but is more geared toward general darkness and tonal space than trying to win you over to Team Lucifer. Driven by the riffs of guitarists Mike Messina and Mindy Johnson (the latter also vocals), “Witch” is the slowest of Wolf Blood‘s tracks until its complementary 12-minute closer “Procession of the Witch,” and it also provides one of the album’s signature hooks, so while it may not represent the High on Fire thrashy sensibility of “Exile,” Messina, Johnson, bassist Brian Wells and drummer/vocalist Jake Paulsrude are definitely putting their best foot forward, and they’re swinging it hard right at their audience.
Grooves and big riffs abound, but that’s nothing new to the converted, and where Wolf Blood really distinguish themselves is in the oddity of their aggression. Blending clean vocals, spoken parts and screams, they play off both metallic and heavy rock styles and craft something fluid and malevolent from them. There’s a sense of theatricality in side A finale “Dancing on Your Grave,” where much of the album’s second half seems to be more about pummel, but there’s an emerging personality at work across the board, and Wolf Blood emerge after “Procession of the Witch” unscathed by their own strangeness, having tread hard on a couple fine lines between subgenres. Ultimately, Wolf Bloodis as satisfying for its brashness as it is for its density of groove.
The band released it earlier this year on two separate, sold-out tape pressings and the whole record is available to stream on the band’s Bandcamp in that original form, but Burning World Records and Outer Battery Records will have a vinyl out in October remixed and remastered by James Plotkin, and you can hear the new version of “Witch” on the player below. Please enjoy:
Wolf Blood‘s Wolf Blood is out in October through Burning World Records (EU preorder here) and Outer Battery Records (US preorder here). The band will tour beginning on Sept. 25 in support of the vinyl.
Wolf Blood Midwest Fall Tour Dates: 9/25- Duluth, MN @ The Red Star 9/26- Eau Claire, WI @ House of Rock 9/27- Dubuque, IA @ Eronel 9/28- TBA 9/29- Iowa City, IA @ TBA 9/30- Madison, WI @ The Wisco 10/1- Madison, WI @ Dragonfly Lounge 10/2- Milwaukee, WI @ Quarters 10/3- Chicago, IL @ TBA 10/4- St. Louis, MO @ TBA 10/5- Colombia, MO @ TBA 10/6- Kansas City, MO @ Vandals 10/7- Lawrence, KS @ TBA 10/8- Des moine, IA @ Vaudville Mews 10/9- Minneapolis, MN @ House show
Posted in Whathaveyou on August 20th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster
Chaotic acid rockers Wolf Blood will issue their self-titled debut on Oct. 1 through Burning World Records. The Minnesota four-piece released the album earlier this year and have nearly sold through both of the tape runs they pressed, and the Burning World vinyl will be available to preorder starting Aug. 27, complete with new artwork that, well, is pretty badass.
That’s below, as well as the Bandcamp stream of the album, info and Midwestern tour dates, since it seems Wolf Blood will hit the road starting late next month and are still solidifying some of the dates for the tour. If you’ve got a place that needs loud in one of the cities below, hit the band up and pay them for playing, because that’s the right fucking thing to do.
Goes a little something like this:
Wolf Blood Debut Album Coming out October 1st, 2014 on Burning World (U.K.)/Road Burn (U.S.) Records.
Wolf Blood’s Midwest tour runs from Sept 25-Oct 11th.
Burning World Records is extremely proud to add another high quality act to the roster. After signing bands like Monomyth, Conan, Slomatics, Nihill and Altar Of Plagues (to name but a few) we can announce that WOLF BLOOD from Minnesota will join our label with their debut album this fall. The 4-piece band has the songs, the power and the riffs, like Windhand and Goatsnake before them.
After selling out the entire first cassette-pressing of their debut album in less than a week, WOLF BLOOD is set to release the vinyl version of the self-titled monster in October 1st 2014.
Formed in a dank basement during the infamous 2012 Duluth, Minnesota flood, guitarist Mike Messina and drummer Jake Paulsrude (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 Brian Wells to flesh-out their menacing sound.
This seven-song recording opens with the haunting single Witch. From there…you’re on your own for the next 35 feral, blood stained minutes.
Midwest Fall Tour Dates: 9/25- Duluth, MN @ The Red Star 9/26- Eau Claire, WI @ House of Rock 9/27- Dubuque, IA @ Eronel 9/28- TBA 9/29- Iowa City, IA @ TBA 9/30- Madison, WI @ The Wisco 10/1- Madison, WI @ Dragonfly Lounge 10/2- Milwaukee, WI @ Quarters 10/3- Chicago, IL @ TBA 10/4- St. Louis, MO @ TBA 10/5- Colombia, MO @ TBA 10/6- Kansas City, MO @ Vandals 10/7- Lawrence, KS @ TBA 10/8- Des moine, IA @ Vaudville Mews 10/9- Minneapolis, MN @ House show
Posted in Whathaveyou on April 28th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster
Over the last couple years, the number of Roadburn‘s fest-exclusive releases has been quietly growing. In 2013, one could pick up vinyl from Dread Sovereign and The Obsessed, and this year, no less than the grind royalty of Napalm Death put together an EP. Add to that live records from YOB and Candlemass and you have a bit of a series going. Or Burning World Records has a bit of a series going, anyway.
Today the label has put the word out that they’ve culled all the leftover vinyl and instead of hording it all to themselves, holing up in a corner somewhere with their arms wrapped tightly around Our Pain is Their Power, they’ve decided to make it available to the buying public who maybe didn’t get the chance to pick the stuff up at the fest itself. In addition, Burning World has made Elder‘s Live at Roadburn 2013 — which I’m told has one or two of my photos in the layout — available as a pay-what-you-want download, which if nothing else is generous. Elder‘s on tour now in Europe with Hull, so that ties together nicely.
Burning World sent the following down the PR wire:
Roadburn Festival exclusive vinyl
We managed to get our hands on these exclusive and limited Roadburn Festival 2014 only vinyl releases:
Napalm Death – Our Pain Is Their Power – The Roadburn Festival EP Yob – The Unreal Never Lived live at Roadburn 2012 2LP Candlemass – Live At The Marquee 1988 2LP
Free Elder Live at Roadburn download
Download Elder Live At Roadburn 2013 from Bandcamp. As usual with the Roadburn releases this download is free (or more exact ‘pay what you want’). If you need more you can pre-order the album on cd (in digipack with artwork) here (vinyl is sold out, get it on tour with the band).
Posted in Whathaveyou on November 15th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
Some right-on-yes-please news today out of the Burning World/Roadburn Records camp in that Boston trio Elder will be releasing their 2013 Roadburn performance under the suitable title of Live at Roadburn 2013on CD and vinyl. By way of a confession, I sort of knew this one was coming since the band was kind enough to ask for some photos from the set — which took place at the converted church Het Patronaat – to be included in the package, but it rules to see it announced and what’s best of all is that Live at Roadburn 2013is available now for a pay-what-you-will download through the Burning World Records Bandcamp page.
Check out the righteous Adrian Dexter artwork, the announcement, and of course, the stream below, and rejoice. They were a highlight of that whole weekend, and some of the best memories I took away from Roadburn 2013 were of watching them so thoroughly kill it. Here’s the news, complete with a section of my review from that day:
ELDER to release Live At Roadburn 2013, download now on Bandcamp
‘What a fucking blast. Seriously. That’s what it says in my notes: “What a fucking blast.” It’s a direct quote. Probably the best thing I can compare it to is when Black Pyramid played the Afterburner in 2011 and were given such a warm reception, but this was bigger, both in room size and in that reception itself. People were lined up out the door and down the alley to see Elder‘s Roadburn debut, and the crowd was cheering before they even started the first song. They waved and people cheered. It was a lot of fun to see, and as it was the 10th show on their 15-date European run with Pet the Preacher, they also handed the place its collective ass. Both cuts from the Spires Burn/Release EP were included, as well as “Dead Roots Stirring” and a host of others, and for the umpteenth time in the last couple days, I felt lucky to be there. I know for a lot of people, this was the first time they’re getting to see them live, but even for the several times I have, this one was something special.’
Live At Roadburn 2013 captures the set in all its glory. Listen to it on below onBandcampand if you like download it, it’s “Pay what you want” so even free!
If you need the set on cd or vinyl please goherebut beware we will not be able to send out the vinyl or cd before Feb. 1st 2014.
Posted in audiObelisk on September 26th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster
It should say something about the complexity of their operations that it takes six people to reproduce live what by and large is created solely by multi-instrumentalist Gilson Heitinga in the studio for the band Atlantis. Heitinga‘s project began seven years ago and will release Omens, their third mostly-instrumental full-length — there are also two EPs, most recently 2012’s La Petite Mort — on Oct. 14 through Burning World Records, crafting a sonic blend of post-metal, progressive electronica and a sense of tonal weight, resulting in six varied and textured tracks that truly seem to be the output of a clear vision for what the sound should be. Whether it’s the initial ambience of “Rapture” or the patient building of tension that leads to the slow-paced crush of “Widowmaker,” both of Omens‘ vinyl sides produce a rich, immersive feel that’s easy to get lost within.
There are stretches that come across as comparatively minimal, but Omensis never really still, and whether it’s a swirl of synth on backing the emergent shouts on “And She Drops the 7th Veil” or the noisy, chaotic patterning of the side B intro “The Path Into” — that path, incidentally, goes into “Widowmaker” — Atlantis always keep a sense of forward motion despite the changing sphere of each given track and the mood that each piece of the 50-minute offering makes so malleable throughout. As both the first instance of the weighted riffing that comes to the fore periodically and the album’s initial thrust,”Raptor” does a significant amount of work in establishing the atmospheric basis from which the rest of the songs work. It has both parcel fluctuations and an overarching linear build, and pays off in grand style only made more affecting by the drawn out keyboard melodies that top.
Because of that drama at the apex and because “Raptor” does so well in representing the whole of Omens from which it comes, I’m happy to have the chance to feature it here. Check it out on the player below, and please enjoy:
Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!