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Review & Full Album Stream: Void Cruiser, Wayfarer

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on February 23rd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

void cruiser wayfarer

[Stream Void Cruiser’s Wayfarer in full by clicking play above. Album is out Feb. 27 on Argonauta Records.]

Though they seem to operate solely under a spaced-out thematic — members credited with “low frequency engine,” “battering apparatus,” and so on — the actual stylistic range with which Finland’s Void Cruiser operate feels much broader. Rather than simply live by the “what would Hawkwind do?” ethic, the Helsinki four-piece’s second album, Wayfarer (also their debut on Argonauta Records), follows 2015’s self-released Overstaying My Welcome and 2013’s Motherload EP and lives up to its name in the kind of meandering path it takes between aesthetics. Space is a factor for sure, but as they play between longer-form pieces like “I Didn’t Lie but I Know Now that I Should Have” and closer “Maailman Kallein Kaupunki” and the quicker shots of “As We Speak” and “All over Nowhere,” Void Cruiser actively defy pigeonholing any more specific than catchalls like “heavy” or “atmospheric,” and set their course for variety over redundancy.

With seven tracks and a 46-minute runtime, Wayfarer is substantial but not unmanageable, and the lineup of guitarist/vocalist Santeri “S-Salo” Salo, bassist/backing vocalist Lassi “T-Hug” Tähtinen, guitarist/backing vocalist Vili “V-Salo” Salo and drummer Teemu “T-Bag” Rantanen bring considerable breadth and personality to the material, commanding the turns they’re making rather than being led by them. Further, because even songs like “Madonnas and Whores” and “Seven Years Late,” which are relatively straightforward in their structure, have a marked tonal largesse and sense of patience, Wayfarer ties together its diverse sonic proposals with an overarching spaciousness of production that makes it all the more immersive to the listener. Surprises abound, but none of the moves Void Cruiser make feel out of place in a way they’re not intended to be. Some, however, are very definitely intended to be.

The prevailing first impression is one of patience as they begin with the rumble and slow roll of the introductory “A Day on Which No Man was Born,” starting with a low-toned drone and moving into an instrumental progression of slow nod that runs over five minutes, setting the listener up for some of Wayfarer‘s more heavy psychedelic aspects as they continue to play out in the subsequent “I Didn’t Lie but I Know Now that I Should Have.” Cumbersome in its name, the second track is likewise patient in how it unfurls, blending grunge — particularly in Santeri‘s vocals — with a languid drift as it makes a chorus of its title-line in its first half before shifting post-midpoint into more of a jam, vocals and all, as they build toward a shouted apex à la Facelift-era Alice in Chains, the key difference being the depth of mix surrounding Void Cruiser and the wash of wah in the solo that proceeds to lead them out of the song over the next couple minutes.

That turn to belting it out is the first clue of Void Cruiser‘s sonic range, and “As We Speak” adds to it immediately with a classic stoner feel run through the aforementioned effects-driven spaciousness. The vocals indulge a scream that speaks to some underlying metallic influence, but “As We Speak” feels more like a Lowrider single played at two-thirds speed than anything aggressive, even in that brief moment, and at 3:32, the shortest track on Wayfarer boosts the forward push that’s been subtly working all along with its quicker tempo ending giving way to “Madonnas and Whores” as the centerpiece. Despite ultra-prevalent low end, the beginning of the seven-minute “Madonnas and Whores” still holds to some rhythmic swing, but plays out moodier through its early verses and choruses, and the hook almost has a tinge of Southern metal as it stomps into a bridge that cuts suddenly just past the four-minute mark into a psych-jam of steady rumble and guitar noodling that comes back around in time for a full-boar solo finish into some hit-stops that bring the song to a close before an obscure sample presumably draws down an intended vinyl side A.

Perhaps the most unexpected transition on Wayfarer arrives in the form of “Seven Years Late,” which while consistent tonally with its surroundings takes on a goth-metal brooding that seems drawn directly from Type O Negative in its guitar work, in its play between slower and faster tempos, its low-voiced spoken part and the backing gang vocals that show up toward the end of its six-minute run. Void Cruiser telegraph the influence via the guitars early, so it’s not like they’re trying to get away with something, but while songs hint at metallurgy prior, the fuller dive of “Seven Years Late” kicks off side B with a genuine blindside punch that, as it gives way to the 4:38 thrust of the penultimate “All over Nowhere” barely has time to be as out of place as it feels like it should be and somehow isn’t. A rocker like “As We Speak” before it, “All over Nowhere” holds to the thickness of the album as a whole and has its context changed somewhat by “Seven Years Late,” but stands up to the task of re-centering Wayfarer in order that 10-minute finale “Maailman Kallein Kaupunki” can set resolutely to its charge of summarizing the record as a whole.

Unsurprisingly, the bassline helps a lot, especially early. Void Cruiser build through psych-grunge atmospheric rock, and top that low end with airy guitar work before solidifying around a forward progression, the lyrics in Finnish, that even seems to tip its hat toward the Type O Negative-ity of “Seven Years Late” as it rolls through its middle, eventually slowing to a nod that seems like it’s going to come apart entirely before eight minutes in, only to have a Kyuss-style desert riff take off at a sprint from the morass. The last push is one more surprise from an outing that’s offered plenty of them, and as they cut short and rumble their way out on a fade before hitting 10:00 flat, one almost can’t be certain there won’t be something else still to come.

Creating that feeling of unpredictability over the course of a single LP isn’t easy, and it’s commendable as a basic intention, but what makes Wayfarer stand out even more is how fluidly Void Cruiser navigate these aesthetic planes, pitting one element next to but not necessarily against the other in order to craft something more individual from them. This is a key factor in Wayfarer‘s success, but of course the occasional bit of rocking the hell out doesn’t hurt either.

Void Cruiser on Thee Facebooks

Void Cruiser on Bandcamp

Void Cruiser at Argonauta Records

Argonauta Records on Thee Facebooks

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Warp Transmission to Reissue Tamám Shud on Creepy Crawl Records

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 21st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Finnish blowout psych rockers Warp Transmission will release their Tamám Shud collection of studio tracks, live recordings, etc., via Creepy Crawl Records on April 7 ahead of a new album later this year, which will mark their full-length debut. The band, who hail from Tampere, get plenty weird in the tracks, which you can hear below from their original release in 2015, and one doubts a remaster job ahead of this CD/LP pressing will have changed that any. You know the drill to some extent, but at the same time there’s an edge to the vibe in what they’re doing that begs further consideration. Obviously Creepy Crawl thought so as well, since they picked it up and all.

The PR wire had this to say about it:

Warp-Transmission-Tamam-Shud

Announcing WARP TRANSMISSION ‘Tamám Shud’ reissue

CREEPY CRAWL RECORDS REISSUE FINNISH SIKE-NOISEROCK MASTERPIECE…

Artist: Warp Transmission
Title: Tamán Shud
Label: Creepy Crawl
Format: LP/CD
Release Date: 7th April ’17

Straight out of Tampere Rock City – these Finnish fiends are the bastard children of Blue Cheer and Monster Magnet (McBain era natch!) – but do not panic, this is no retro show, they are not throwbacks or wimpy psych wannabe shoegazers – this record ROCKS and it ROCKS HARD!

Originally released on cassette, Creepy Crawl was totally blown away by it and we knew this had to come out on LP/CD – Tamam Shud is part live rehearsal recordings and the rest created at their own Kemian Laboratorio – 8 face melting freakouts with layers of effect laden guitars, spaced out organ and synth and thunderous bass and drums. Remastered for CD/LP reissue and cut loud…. This is unrelenting psyche-rock at its finest… 500 LP / 1000 CD… setting up for a full length later in 2017.

Warp Transmission is a freak accident, the weirdo process ultra, a travel void of reason. It’s spaced out, stoner,psychedelic, wastoid, heavy ‘n’ heady ROCK.

It’s about riding blind the primal urge, living the archetype, and always rocking out with an excess of noise, burning some bridges and crossing a couple abysses along the way.

Tracklisting:
01. Black Dots
02. Hash Time I
03. Cast into the Process
04. Hash Time II
05. Confusion
06. Great Oceans in the Sky
07. Hash Time III
08. Archetype: Brainfry
09. Outro

Warp Transmission:
Ville – guitars
Jere – guitars
Pekka – bass
Jussi – bass
Jesse – drums
Lede – synth/FX
Kari – voice, organ

https://www.facebook.com/WarpTransmission
https://warptransmission.bandcamp.com/
http://creepycrawl.bigcartel.com/
https://www.facebook.com/creepyxcrawl/

Warp Transmission, Tamám Shud (2015)

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The Obelisk Radio Adds: Evil Acidhead, Gypsy Sun Revival, Albinö Rhino, Monarch, and Vision Éternel

Posted in Radio on February 20th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

the obelisk radio

My going motto for this site, which basically I repeat to myself like a mantra, is to do as much as I can when I can. Obviously that fluctuates, and I think that’s a good thing on many levels, but I’ve had more time recently to pay due attention to the goings on with The Obelisk Radio and I’m thankful for that. This is the second round of adds for this month, and in addition to the offerings highlighted below, another 30-plus releases have gone up to the server as of today, including some choice bootlegs from the likes of Lowrider, Brant Bjork, Vista Chino, Greenleaf, Acid King, Neurosis and Kyuss. I encourage you to check out the full list of adds here. It kicks a formidable amount of ass.

The Obelisk Radio adds for Feb. 20, 2017:

Evil Acidhead, In the Name of all that is Unholy

Evil-Acidhead-In-the-Name-of-all-that-is-Unholy

This 2015 reissue on Agitated Records of Evil Acidhead‘s In the Name of all that is Unholy becomes particularly relevant since 2017 marks 30 years since its original release. Offered as a cassette in 1987 by guitarist John McBain (Monster MagnetWellwater Conspiracy), it tops an hour and 17 minutes and crosses the first of its two LPs before it’s even finished with its four-part opener, and only then digs into the 23-minute “I Control the Moon.” A challenging listen front to back even three decades later, it holds to an experimentalist core of guitar effects, swirl, loops — which are near-maddening on side B’s “Part III: Possession” — and malevolent, droning abrasion. What’s stunning about it is if you said this was something McBain recorded a few months ago, there would be no choice but to call it forward-thinking. Imagine a record that 30 years later still offers a legitimate sense of being ahead of the day. Not that it never happens, but it’s certainly rare, and In the Name of all that is Unholy seems to willfully sidestep what we think of as reality in favor of its apparently timeless hellscapes. It’s far, far away from pleasant, but it sure as hell is impressive.

Evil Acidhead on Thee Facebooks

Agitated Records website

 

Gypsy Sun Revival, Gypsy Sun Revival

http://cdn.theobelisk.net/obelisk/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/gypsy-sun-revival-gypsy-sun-revival

Fort Worth trio Gypsy Sun Revival make their debut with this 2016 self-titled full-length and earn immediate notoriety for their blend of heavy psychedelic and straightforward rocker impulses as well as the fact that the vinyl version of the album sees release through ultra-respected purveyor Nasoni Records. One might recall the last time the Berlin-based label picked up a Texan band, it was Wo Fat, so it’s no minor endorsement of Gypsy Sun Revival‘s potential, and the three-piece of vocalist/bassist/organist Lee Ryan, guitarist/thereminist Will Weise and drummer Ben Harwood live up to it across the 46-minute seven-tracker, songs like “Cosmic Plains” finding a middle ground between sleek ’70s groove and modern thickness, setting up longer post-Zeppelin jams to come like “Idle Tides,” which, though fluid, rely less on effects wash to get their improvisational point across than the raw dynamic between the band itself. As a debut, Gypsy Sun Revival impresses for that, but even more for the level of immersion it enacts the further along it goes, so that when they get to languid instrumental closer “Radiance,” the band’s approach seems to be in full bloom when in fact they may only be beginning their forward creative journey.

Gypsy Sun Revival on Thee Facebooks

Nasoni Records website

 

Albinö Rhino, Upholder Live at Ääniwalli, Helsinki 17.12.2016

Albinö-Rhino-Upholder-Live

I’m pretty sure all those umlauts are going to crash the radio stream every single time this gets played, but a 41-minute digital live version — offered as a name-your-price download, no less — of Albinö Rhino‘s heavy psych epic “Upholder” recorded this past December in their native Helsinki is too good to pass up. The Finnish trio issued the studio edition of the three-so-far-part piece late in 2016 under the simple title Upholder (review here), and Upholder Live at Ääniwalli, Helsinki 17.12.2016 comprises a 41-minute single-track rendering of the first two parts brought together with onstage energy and a fitting showcase of the song’s longform jamming path. Led by Kimmo Tyni‘s guitar work — no less recalling early Natas via Sungrazer and Sleep here than in the studio recording — and gruff vocals, the live incarnation also benefits from the deep patience in Ville Harju‘s bass and Viljami Väre‘s drumming, as heard under Tyni‘s moog solo circa 14 minutes in. It’s soon for a revisit of Upholder itself, but as well as getting additional mileage out of the piece, Albinö Rhino bring a different flavor to the live execution of it to this digital-only outing, and if it catches more ears as a 41-minute single song as opposed to being broken up over two sides, there’s no way that’s going to hurt them. Either way you get it, its soul, heft and molten vibe resonate.

Albinö Rhino on Thee Facebooks

Albinö Rhino on Bandcamp

 

Monarch, Two Isles

monarch-two-isles

Not to be understated is the sense of poise that pervades Two Isles, the debut full-length from Encinitas, California, psychedelic progressives Monarch. Delivered via Causa Sui‘s imprint El Paraiso Records — the gorgeous art treatment is consistent with their hallmark style — and produced by Brian Ellis (AstraPsicomagia, etc.), it locks into classically winding turns or melodic flourish with equal ease on side A pieces like the opening title-track and “Assent,” proffering scope but not necessarily pretense. Call it prog in the new West Coast tradition if you must, “Dancers of the Sun” and the more insistent staccato of “Sedna’s Fervor” are dead on either way, and the five-piece of guitarist/vocalist Dominic Denholm, guitarists Nate Burns and Thomas Dibenedetto (see also Joy and Sacri Monti), bassist Matt Weiss and drummer Andrew Ware save their finest showcase for the just-under-10-minute finale “Shady Maiden,” summarizing their liquefied proceedings in more than able fashion, reaching ahead of themselves as the style warrants, and once more proving what might be hypnotic were it not such an active, exciting listen.

Monarch on Thee Facebooks

Monarch at El Paraiso Records

 

Vision Éternel, Echoes from Forgotten Hearts

vision-eternel-echoes-from-forgotten-hearts

Echoes from Forgotten Hearts is the latest EP from Montréal-based solo artist Alexandre Julien, who operates under the banner of Vision Éternel, and it comprises seven brief individual tracks numbered in French as “Pièce No. Un,” “Pièce No. Deux,” etc., of wistful guitar lines and serene dronescapes. The balance that a “Pièce No. Deux” is able to strike by sounding so broad and wide open and yet only being 1:47 is striking, and it makes the release flow together all the more as a work on a single emotional thematic, and while it all only winds up being 14 minutes in total, Julien is able to bring that thematic to life in that time with depth and grace, so that when the relative sprawl of the 3:45 closer “Pièce No. Sept,” takes hold, one only wishes it would go on further. Note this is one of several Vision Éternel offerings joining the playlist this week, and Julien has a boxed set in progress collecting a number of his outings to be released sometime later this year, including, I believe, this one, which originally came out in 2015. Hopefully it’s not long before he follows it with new material.

Vision Éternel on Thee Facebooks

Vision Éternel on Bandcamp

 

Thank you as always for reading and listening.

To see everything that joined the playlist today, please visit The Obelisk Radio.

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Elephant Bell Announce April 28 Release for Gates of Dawn

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 20th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

elephant-bell

So here’s my understanding of what’s going on with Elephant Bell‘s Gates of Dawn. The Finnish four-piece — not to be confused with emergent UK heavy rockers Elephant Tree — have been issuing short releases since the early aughts. Demos and EPs. In 2011, they offered up a self-titled full-length debut. That album was initially announced as being reissued through Argonauta last fall, and at the time, it could still be streamed from Elephant Bell‘s Bandcamp page. Okay.

You’ll note the player in that news post is now empty. As I read the below, what seems to be the situation is that Elephant Bell‘s Elephant Bell has been reworked to some degree as Gates of Dawn and will now be out April 28 via Argonauta. There’s a new video for “Come to the Show” that you can see at the bottom of this post. Just how much as been done to it versus the form the self-titled took five years ago, I’ve no idea, but that’s my interpretation of what’s happened here. I could be completely wrong. It could be a completely new album. I’m doing the best I can.

Either way: Elephant Bell. April 28. Gates of DawnArgonauta. Sometimes I don’t know why I bother trying to think.

PR wire:

elephant-bell-gates-of-dawn

Finnish Stoner Rockers ELEPHANT BELL release cover artwork and first single from their highly anticipated debut album.

The official video-clip of the song “Come to See the Show” is available here.

Featuring LOWBURN member Tomi Mykkanen and mastered by Karl Daniel Lidén (GREENLEAF and DOZER) , “Gates of Dawn” (the revamped version of the “self-titled” one previously available digitally) is a colossal album influenced by the first ‘stoner’ era and by bands as Monster Magnet, Fu Manchu, with a touch of grunge-like sonorities as Soundgarden.

ELEPHANT BELL “Gates of Dawn” will be released in CD by Argonauta Records and available from April 28th, 2017.

Preorders run here: http://bit.ly/2lURp16

TRACKLIST:
1. So Pure
2. Demon Seducer
3. The Sun Is Going Down
4. Come To See the Show
5. Escape
6. Dreamwheel
7. Bug In the Soup
8. The Sweet Babylon
9. Mojo Filter
10. Straight to Hell
11. The Last Scene

Elephant Bell is:
Tommy Waits – vocals, guitar
Tom C. Johnson – guitar, vocals
J.J. Strangler – bass, vocals
Migis Thunderthrone – drums

www.facebook.com/elephantbell
https://elephantbell.bandcamp.com/
www.argonautarecords.com
https://www.facebook.com/ArgonautaRecords

Elephant Bell, “Come to See the Show” official video

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Review & Full Album Stream: Deep Space Destructors, Psychedelogy

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on February 17th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

deep-space-destructors-psychedelogy

[Click play above to stream Deep Space Destructors’ Psychedelogy in full. Album is out Feb. 27 on Space Rock Productions.]

Goes without saying that time is a construct and that humans’ ability to understand it only relates to our very small, very remote position in a much vaster universe and that even the figures the construct presents are utterly beyond our conception — i.e., we cannot fathom 200 of our own years, and our years are meaningless to the surrounding cosmos. That’s a given. However, three years between full-lengths still feels like a long time for Finnish (nations: also a construct) trio Deep Space Destructors. Their fourth full-length, Psychedelogy, arrives via Space Rock Productions, which is the imprint helmed by synth wizard Scott “Dr. Space” Heller of Øresund Space Collective and known for releasing that band’s work as well as other projects and offshoots.

To my knowledge, Deep Space Destructors — bassist/vocalist Jani Pitkänen, guitarist/backing vocalist Petri Lassila and drummer Markus Pitkänen — have no relation to that collective (yet), so all the more it’s an endorsement that should ring in the ears among the cosmically converted. The Oulu natives earn it well in the four tracks of Psychedelogy, which follows the 2015 two-songer Spring Break from Space (review here) as well as their first three long-players, 2014’s III (review here), 2013’s II (review here) and 2012’s I (review here), and stay true to the Hawkwindian roots of the genre while exploring progressive textures of their own. At an easily-digested 38 minutes, Psychedelogy presents its two sides — side Space and side Void (the last EP did likewise) — with poise and without pretense. They’re going on this trip one way or the other. Whether or not you come along is going to be your call.

Each half of Psychedelogy pairs a shorter piece with a longer one. Opener “Journey to the Space Mountain” (7:55) will be familiar to anyone who caught wind of Spring Break from Space, since it launched that brief offering as well. It is particularly suited to the task here too, with a fervent thrust that kicks up interstellar dust almost immediately following a quick sample and enacts immersive swirl as it makes its way toward its fist-in-the-air-moment-of-galaxial-righteousness title-line hook. Both it and the 10-minute “Spacemind,” which follows, have an underlying sense of triumph, but the momentum that carries through them isn’t to be understated, Markus and Jani making for a rhythmic powerhouse beneath Petri‘s echoing solo as “Journey to the Space Mountain” pours through its midsection, eventually making its way, gloriously, back to the chorus as part of a build the apex of which strikes just before feedback caps off.

A quieter, more Floydian beginning sets the course for “Spacemind,” but there’s a tension in the bass and drums as well as the first verse takes hold, Jani‘s vocals coated in effects, keys adding to the melody of Petri‘s guitar. Before the two-minute mark, “Spacemind” hits into its chorus with even more of a feeling of arrival than “Journey to the Space Mountain,” but it’s still just the beginning, as Deep Space Destructors use that as the launchpad for an instrumental bridge of classic prog fits and turns before moving back into the soothing verse section like nothing ever happened. They’re not yet at the halfway point of the track, but the fluidity of what they’ve executed already makes “Spacemind” a particular highlight of Psychedelogy. The ensuing jam, calm but purposeful with periodic vocal overlay, seals that, and when the three-piece ignite thrusters and push toward the song’s conclusion, the payoff seems to last until the very final second, clearly making the most of its time — which, just as a reminder, is a construct and doesn’t exist. Brain goes pop.

I don’t know if there’s an intentional difference between side Space and side Void in terms of what Deep Space Destructors are looking to accomplish, but it’s easy enough to read the second half of Psychedelogy as pushing further out along the progressive path the band has thus far marched. Both “Return to the Black Star” (7:05) and closer “From the Ashes” (12:34) keep the flow molten, the overarching vibe spontaneous but subject to some command, and come fleshed out by effects and synth, creating the parameters of the alternate universe in which they dwell. With Jani and Petri together on vocals, “Return to the Black Star” echoes some of the Hawkwindiness of “Journey to the Space Mountain,” but is more patient in that exercise and more willing to bring an improvised-seeming lead to the foreground in its back end. Again, this doesn’t necessarily mark a radical departure from the album’s beginnings, but the continuation presents some subtle turns for those ready to take Psychedelogy on for multiple listens — a process through which it only grows more fulfilling.

Something else “Return to the Black Star” and “From the Ashes” have in common is being less immediately about their hooks, but the core guitar/bass figure in the finale is especially memorable nonetheless for its proggy intricacy — one can’t help but be reminded of peak-era Steven Wilson in some of the ensuing shimmer — and the additional flourish of sitar is yet another distinguishing factor. Ultimately though it’s the core guitar/bass/drums dynamic between the Pitkänens and Lassila that carries “From the Ashes” over so effectively, and beneath the swirl, the kosmiche thematics and the range, that turns out to be what most draws these songs together with the rest of Deep Space Destructors‘ body of work. Their time on “spring break” was not misspent, and whether they’ll resume the album-per-year pace of their first three outings, I wouldn’t speculate, but they’ve come into Psychedelogy with a clear sense of who they are and what they want to be as a group. If they follow through going forward on their own terms, then all the better, whatever those terms might be.

Deep Space Destructors, “Return to the Black Star” official video

Deep Space Destructors on Thee Facebooks

Deep Space Destructors on Bandcamp

Deep Space Destructors website

Space Rock Productions website

Psychedelogy order page at Sapphire Records

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Mansion and Cardinal Wyrm Release Split Single

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 16th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Finnish narrative cultists Mansion offered up a couple remixes of their 2015 single Altar Sermon (review here) late last year, and together with their new split with Cardinal Wyrm, the intention seems to be to keep momentum going leading into their awaited debut full-length, which I hear is in progress. That can only be good news after the band’s 2013 We Shall Live (review here) and 2014 Uncreation (review here) EPs, and the new single — which, hey, is limited to 50 copies, released on Valentine’s Day, and streaming nowhere — pairs them with their doomly Californian labelmates working on a theme of both bands covering Joy DivisionMansion taking on “The Eternal” while Cardinal Wyrm lead off the release with “Exercise One.”

Cardinal Wyrm had their Cast Away Souls full-length out late last year on Svart, and that’s streaming in full below, as well as the aforementioned Mansion remixes. I haven’t heard the covers yet, but will hope I get to before the platters are gone, if they’re not already. Pressing is by their pressed by collaborative RR Records imprint, and it’s available only from the bands directly via their Thee Facebooks/Bandcamp pages.

Info and buy links follow, as sent along the PR wire:

mansion

cardinal wyrm

Mansion / Cardinal Wyrm split 7″

Californian epic doom wanderers Cardinal Wyrm and Finland’s doomed congregation Mansion collaborate on this unique transmission of heart and soul. Released on the day of the lords 2017, this split 7” offers insight into the shadowplay of dead souls wandering the interzone, a perfect candidate for that one record you’d play as the new dawn fades into the wilderness of isolation.

The bands have neither walked in line nor rendered these songs as a means to an end, instead interpreting each track as its own ceremony, the sound of music as firm and brittle as glass, bringing them to the brink at which something must break into the realm of disorder. The only mistake you could make would be to passover this limited-issue 7” – pick it up while it lasts!

Cardinal Wyrm – Exercise One
Mansion – The Eternal

In a recent, depressing recording session we produced our version of the Joy Division song Eternal with guest vocals by brother Albert. We leave the year 2016 behind on this bleak note. Repent.

– Mikael / Mansion

https://cardinalwyrm.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Cardinal-Wyrm-157603967620024/
https://weshalllive.bandcamp.com/album/mansion-cardinal-wyrm-split-7
https://www.facebook.com/mansionalma/

Mansion, Altar Sermon Remix 2016

Cardinal Wyrm, Cast Away Souls (2016)

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Deep Space Destructors to Release Psychedelogy Feb. 27

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 7th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

deep-space-destructors-Photo-by-Tatu-Ollanketo

On Feb. 27, Finnish trio Deep Space Destructors will release their new LP, Psychedelogy, on Space Rock Productions. The Oulu-based outfit were last heard from on 2015’s Spring Break from Space EP (review here), and while to let a whole year pass without a release seems crazy from a space rock band, I’ve no doubt their time was well spent in prepping this full-length as they have. How can I be so sure without actually having heard it?

Well, over the weekend the band put up a special preview on their website with clips from the four included songs and an interactive look at the artwork by Markus Räisänen, and one can get a pretty solid sense of where they’re coming from with that. Besides, as anyone who heard their prior 2014 album, III (review here), can tell you, dudes know what they’re doing at this point.

If you need more, consider the endorsement of Space Rock Productions, the label helmed by none other than Scott “Dr. Space” Heller of Øresund Space Collective himself. You know he doesn’t want any part of it if it’s not spacey as hell. So yeah, keep an eye out. I’ll hope to have a review of Psychedelogy up before the end of the month.

In the interim, you can dig into the below info and links:

deep-space-destructors-psychedelogy

Take a trip to amazing gatefold album art made by Markus Räisänen, with sounds from “Psychedelogy” out on vinyl February 27th through Space Rock Productions!

Web design by Mikko “ruottis” Ruotsalainen. Preview: http://bit.ly/2kUUmC7

Psychedelogy tracklisting:

Side Space:
Journey to the Space Mountain
Spacemind

Side Void:
Return to the Black Star
From the Ashes

Deep Space Destructors plays psychedelic space rock from Earth.

DSD was founded in the beginning of the Earth year 2011 in Oulu, Finland, on band members’ mutual love for 60’s and 70’s kraut, prog and psychedelic rock.

DSD’s journey continues towards deeper space and sounds.

Deep Space Destructors is:
Jani Pitkänen – vocals, bass
Petri Lassila – guitars, backing vocals
Markus Pitkänen – drums

http://www.dsdband.space/
https://www.facebook.com/deepspacedestructors/
https://deepspacedestructors.bandcamp.com/

Deep Space Destructors, “Journey to the Space Mountain”

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Review & Track Premiere: PH, Eternal Hayden

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 26th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

ph eternal hayden

[Click play above to stream ‘Reach’ from PH’s Eternal Hayden. Album is out March 10 on Svart Records.]

If you think your mind might be up to the task, PH‘s Eternal Hayden best offers its ethereal, droning delights of cosmic doom in full headphone submersion. The question is whether one can listen without being overwhelmed by its pulsations, by its strong lines of synth, by the guitar that scours underneath and by the vocals that speak through the wash no less a part of it. Eternal Hayden is the first album by the Finnish collective through Svart Records, and the first to be released under the moniker of PH after a trilogy of full-lengths issued as Mr. Peter Hayden between 2010 and 2014. Those records, 2010’s Faster than Speed (review here), 2012’s Born a Trip (review here) and 2014’s Archdimension Now (review here) all arrived via Kauriala Society and were works of increasing scope one into the next until the band, at the end of Archdimension Now, seemed finally to obliterate themselves through sonic means.

In other words, I thought they were done. And maybe they were, but, taking the new name PH from the illuminated logo/symbol they play beneath on stage — also seen on the Eternal Hayden cover art, in a fitting declaration of purpose — the band seem to be willfully embarking on a new era with these five tracks, and where the first three Mr. Peter Hayden albums broadened exponentially, first to over an hour, then to about two hours, their first as PH seems to reset the sphere, clocking in at a manageable, single LP’s 37 minutes. Hell, the second to last song, “Higher,” is under four minutes — and it’s one of three cuts included that would qualify individually as the shortest song the band has ever done. Clearly a shift in approach is underway.

And PH are well aware of it. Consciousness and purpose at the root of their work are nothing new — all along, they’re what’s made it breathtakingly progressive instead of haphazard in its experimentalism — but Eternal Hayden itself seems to become the band’s process of resetting, as much how they’re explaining it to themselves as how they’re explaining it to their audience. They begin with 16:45 of self-examination on “Looking back at Mr. Peter Hayden,” the opener and longest track (immediate points) that directly tackles the issue of where they were and where they are through an emergent noise wash and richly atmospheric build, post-metal as much as it’s post everything else, but underscored by low end rumble enough to keep the guitars, synth, vocoder-style effects-laden singing and open-spaced ambience from spiriting itself away into nothingness. Its drones have underlying movement, in other words, and if Eternal Hayden is starting off with this extension of its self-awareness, then PH‘s conclusion doesn’t seem to be without its sentimentality, though after about seven minutes in, the band goes into full-crush mode and plunders for the next minute-plus until drones, synth and other un-drummed atmospherics take hold for the duration, hypnotic, immersive and — yes — potentially overwhelming on headphones, depending largely on the volume at which one consumes/is consumed by them.

ph

At various moments minimal and others seemingly endless in its depth, the ending of “Looking back at Mr. Peter Hayden” feeds seamlessly into the resonant crashing of “We Fly High,” which Mr. Peter Hayden released as a single in 2014 (review here), prior to the release of Archdimension Now. Re-recorded and at least somewhat reinterpreted from its first showing, it ups the plod factor from the opener while holding to the post-Jesu vocal-style and wash of keyboard melody, coming to a swirling apex as it hits the halfway mark and receding into ambience from there. Crashes are peppered throughout, and the bassline remains consistent to hold it together, but “We Fly High” soothes as much as it crushes, and its position between the past and the future makes it the perfect linear fit as PH move into Eternal Hayden‘s final trio of cuts.

All three of Eternal Hayden‘s final titles — “Reach,” “Higher” and “Rock and Roll Future” — give some indication of moving forward, and they do likewise in their sound as well, feeding one into the next and finding a place between heavy post-rock, cosmic drone and doomly lumbering. “Reach” is backed by a swirl that holds for the entirety of its four and a half minutes, and though these songs are all shorter, as noted, PH maintain the sense of sprawl brought to “Looking back at Mr. Peter Hayden” and “We Fly High” as they execute the turn into this new aural reality. Even the keys in “Higher” seem to nod, and the guitar line is happy to follow suit, a crash gradually arising that echoes “We Fly High” without being quite as direct until the last minute or so, when joined by what might be buried vocals, more layers of guitar and further wash. It’s not necessarily about stripping down from where PH were at the start of Eternal Hayden so much as redirecting how the elements at play function to create a song — “Higher” could’ve just as easily been titled “More Efficient,” and as a standalone piece, it doesn’t lose anything for its sense of compression, particularly as its crescendo leads into the closer.

The last movement of this miniaturized trilogy, “Rock and Roll Future” brings the guitar line forward to emphasize the well-punctuated post-rock drift and the push that PH are able to bring to it, so that their material seems to drone even as its motion carries toward a clearheaded ending. One or two measures is all it takes. As “Rock and Roll Future” approaches the four-minute mark, the noise wash rises quickly, the song dissipates and that’s it. To conclude Eternal Hayden in such a fashion only highlights the purpose of the album as a whole — PH have made the transition to set themselves on a new path with this fourth and/or first record — and they’ve done so while sharing the process with their listeners on a meta level. That honesty of approach is rare, but moreover, as PH assess their past and their way forward, they engage the audience as a part of it. This is crucial to the immersion that Eternal Hayden creates with its depth of mix and atmospherics, and it makes it plain that as Mr. Peter Hayden become simply PH, they’re carrying pivotal lessons with them as to what that process means.

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