Craneium Announce ‘Kill with Fuzz’ European Touring

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 4th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

craneium

Not to contradict Craneium or anything, but if Europe could possibly have been killed by fuzz, presumably from some manner of overdose thereof, wouldn’t it have happened already? Rather, the continent seems — at least from my position across an ocean from it — insatiable when it comes to saturated tonality and heavy groove. Still, you gotta call the tour something, right, so if they’re setting goals for themselves, it would seem only admirable they’d reach for the stars, as it were, even if those stars were, you know, devastating the populace all around.

Whatever the survival rate will ultimately be, I dug Craneium‘s 2018 third album, The Narrow Line (review here) — which you can stream below — and I’m glad enough to have an excuse to revisit it by posting these tour dates. They kick off in the Netherlands and wrap in Germany and kick around for over a week between.

Have at it:

craneium tour

We just added a show in Czech Republic 22.6! Just a few more weeks now and we will kill Europe with fuzz.

15.6 MFC Festival Coevorden (NL)
16.6 MTs /Oldenburg (Ger)
17.6 Club Kinky Star /Ghent (Bel) w/ Fire Down Below
18.6 STELPLAATS /Leuven (Bel)
19.6 Mandril Culture & Political Center /Maastrich (NL) w/Lacertilia
21.6 Zille/Göppingen (Ger)
22.6 Magic place /Louny (CZ)
23.6 Toast Hawaii /Berlin (Ger) w/The Trikes, HEAVY HEAVY

Bio:

Craneium is a stoner/desert/fuzz rock band formed in Turku late 2011 and has sweated themselves through an intense live schedule since then!

Craneium released their first album “the Slowerdrive Tapes” on green cassette 2013, a split 12″ record with 3rd Trip 2014 and a their full-lenght “Explore The Void” in through Ripple Music december 2016.

Tune Down, Turn Up and Fuzz Out with Craneium. Worshippers of amplifiers, weird tales, fuzzboxes and mindexpanding rock can have a taste of the band here: https://craneiumband.bandcamp.com/

Craneium is:
Andreas Kaján – Vocals & Guitars
Martin Ahlö – Vocals & Guitars
Joel Kronqvist – Drums
Jonas Ridberg – Bass

https://www.facebook.com/craneiumband/
http://craneiumband.bandcamp.com/
https://www.instagram.com/craneiumband/
http://www.ripple-music.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Ripple-Music-369610860064/

Craneium, The Narrow Line (2018)

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Review & Full Album Stream: Death Hawks, Psychic Harmony

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on June 3rd, 2019 by JJ Koczan

death hawks psychic harmony

[Click play above to stream Death Hawks’ Psychic Harmony in full. Album is out June 7 on Svart Records.]

Nearly a decade after their inception, Tampere, Finland’s Death Hawks are rewriting the script on where synth-led prog, psychedelia, and pop meet. Psychic Harmony arrives via Svart Records as their fourth album, and it takes the dreamscape aspects that showed themselves throughout the deep-ranging melodies of 2015’s Sun Future Moon (review here) and pushes them into a mega-lush wash of synth, periodic bouts of sax and a glamourized emotionality that comes through in slow-burners like “Re-Run” as well as in the disco-fied “Whisper,” which seems to nod at Blondie‘s flirtations with funk and eminent danceability. The returning four-piece of vocalist/guitarist Teemu Markkula, bassist/vocalist Riku Pirttiniemi, drummer Miikka Heikkinen and keyboardist/saxophonist Tenho Mattila present 10 tracks for a fluid single LP tied together by style amid varying moods driven as much if not more by keys as by guitar, the band showcasing a vision of pop sexuality that’s as much ’70s androgyny as it is krautrock exploration.

These would seem to be contrasts until one actually listens to Psychic Harmony, which lives up to its title in bringing into a single context such a swath of impulses, and making something deeply human at the same time so much of it is based around synthesizer. It is a significant leap or sidestep in sound even from the preceding Sun Future Moon, let alone anything that came before it, but here too, it is the focus on melodicism that makes Psychic Harmony within the band’s sphere even as it seems to expand the radius thereof, and Markkula‘s voice throughout is a uniting factor the contributions of which are not to be understated. Pirttiniemi has his parts as well, and Nicole Willis contributes a guest spot to acoustic-led closer “I am a Tree,” but still, Markkula helps establish the mood in which much of the album is operating, and the vibe set forth in “Secret Isle” at the outset is one that holds firm across nearly everything that follows, wherever else it might go sound-wise.

And that vibe? Well, it starts with the sound of a needle hitting a record. The idea isn’t just that you’re listening to a vinyl album, but what Death Hawks are shooting for immediately is the idea of being transported through the audio that comes — that cinematic otherworldliness of the keys that start the song and the outward voyage that ensues from there. It’s as though they’re signaling to their audience the intention for the music to take them someplace, and the lyrics to song bear that out as well. Psychic Harmony itself becomes that secret isle, and as the opener moves into the multi-color wash of “Like Lovers Do,” with a change in the vocals, sax buried far back in the mix and keys pushed far forward with voice overtop, the feel becomes all the more spacious, the world created in “Secret Isle” seeming to open wide with programmed beats and a second half that seems to purposefully lose itself in the moment.

death hawks (Photo by Sami Sanpikkila)

“Re-Run” follows and seems to work in the same vein initially, but even after the synth handclaps arrive after about a minute in, the feel is more mellow, with the mix completely filled out from top to bottom with rhythm and melody. Piano enters at the two-minute mark and “Re-Run” moves into its jazzier break, with the sax included as well, but the chorus returns with layers of vocals, leading just to Markkula‘s voice echoing through the chorus toward the title line again, ethereal sounds following and echoing away to lead out and toward the all-things fusion of the instrumental “Aleya,” which only furthers the atmosphere built to that point with horn harmonies and keys coinciding and a movement from mellow jazz to a more grandiose wash at the finish, bringing about the presumed side A capper “Synchronicity,” with a more prominent beat and effects-laden vocals, repetitions of the title word that make it seems almost like an advertisement from the future, and that shift into a stretch of dance-drift and end with fading swirl noise.

Bass beat starts “Whisper” at the (again, presumed) launch of side B, with a more direct play on dance pop that ensues, the aforementioned disco flush coming through not with the urgency of cocaine that actually typified so much of the material from the era with with the song is conversing, but a more laid back mindset, third eye open and ready to get funky. Still, the chorus lands with more insistence thanks in no small part to the beat behind it as well as the layers of vocals, so a guitar solo isn’t out of place when Death Hawks come around to the final section of the song. It’s the kind of thing that would have an extended dance mix in another time, another place. The drama continues in “A Room with a View” amid keyboard starts and stops, krautrock nuance and the prominent layers of vocals that emphasize the bright and progressive mood soon taken further with the arrival of the saxophone. I’d say “Play for Rewind” brings the proceedings back to ground, but yeah, that’s clearly not where Death Hawks are interested in going with Psychic Harmony.

Instead, they they move forward in deceptively efficient upbeat prog-pop form with a drum motion that increases subtly in intensity until at about 3:10 into the total 3:32, it moves to a double-kick to finish out, cutting to silence ahead of “Scent of Life,” a penultimate single-worthy piece that does indeed recall some of the album’s earlier moments, feeling familiar not in the sense of repeating anything, but of adding to what’s already there. It is the crescendo for the album as a whole, without question, and the departure of “I am a Tree” — the purposeful connection to earth, to the ground that “Play for Rewind” so readily rejected — is palpable, but through the prominence of voice throughout, maintains a complementary place with the other tracks before it. Like much of the album, it is beautiful and it knows it, but it is not content to let that self-awareness carry it. And as Death Hawks have thrown open the doors of perception here and discovered such shimmer on the other side, I would not expect their journey of discovery to stagnate anytime soon.

Death Hawks, “Re-Run” official video

Death Hawks website

Death Hawks on Thee Facebooks

Svart Records

Svart Records on Thee Facebooks

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Death Hawks Post “Re-Run” Video; Psychic Harmony out June 7

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 21st, 2019 by JJ Koczan

death hawks (Photo by Sami Sanpikkila)

Let’s answer the most pressing question immediately: Yes, the new Death Hawks video does feature a saxophone being played on the edge of a cliffside shorline, the ocean roiling below. If you’re not the patient kind, it starts at 2:45, and it’s of course glorious. Other highlights include petting the leaves of a bush and shooting a laser out of a diamond encased in a pineapple. If there’s any mystery left as to why I’m such a proponent of this band, I sincerely ask you to read the last sentence again and find your answer therein.

Death Hawks release their new album, Psychic Harmony on June 7 through Svart, and with it tap into synth-prog and danceable pastoralism the likes of which could only result from a cosmic collision of influences. Don’t ask me what — I’m not that cool — but suffice it to say the Finnish four-piece have their thing set and they’re running with it. Or at least walking. On the side of some rock formations. Also on the beach. Also in a field. They’re pretty much everywhere, and yet not at all touching the ground. Approach with mind and ears open. Do that.

Assuming all goes according to my evil plans — which, now that I’m telling them to you, it most certainly will not — I’m going to have a review and a front-to-back stream of Psychic Harmony on next Monday, so you’ll pardon me if I save some ethereal-type hyperbole for that. In the meantime, to get yourself a little taste of what the record’s all about, “Re-Run” is on the player below, followed by just a quick bit of perspective from the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

Death Hawks, “Re-Run” official video

Kaleidoscopic enigmas Death Hawks reveal the new video “Re-Run.” The track hails from highly anticipated fourth album, Psychic Harmony, set for international release on June 7th via Svart Records.

On their continual shift in sound, vocalist/guitarist Teemu Markkula expounds: “We have always been searching new unforeseen ways in music to express ourselves. It is almost like a chemical reaction. Combining pieces of different elements can lead to an explosion or maybe to a state of euphoria. A sense of harmony is usually what does the trick for me.” He adds, “It’s a continuous quest for new. To get stuck, stay put, or stuck in reverse, even, is certain death. That’s why for us it’s better to stay lost, even, and keep flying and searching. Inspiration is a highly addictive feeling.”

Death Hawks website

Death Hawks on Thee Facebooks

Svart Records

Svart Records on Thee Facebooks

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Kaleidobolt Premiere “Deadpan Blues” from Bitter out May 31

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on May 16th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

kaleidobolt

Finnish boogie-made-prog heavy rockers Kaleidobolt will issue their third album, Bitter, on May 31 as their debut release for Svart Records, and though the track premiering below from it is called “Deadpan Blues,” make no mistake, there’s just about nothing deadpan about the entire outing. Instead, the returning Helsinki trio of guitarist/vocalist Sampo Kääriäinen, bassist/vocalist Marco Menestrina and drummer Valtteri Lindholm bask in the experience gleaned from touring to support their second album, 2016’s The Zenith Cracks (review here), and use the recording process itself like another instrument in exciting and engaging ways. “Deadpan Blues” on the album follows directly after the previously unveiled “I am the Seer” (posted here, but also way down at the bottom of this post), a song that in answering the organ-laced righteousness and jangle of opener “Another Toothpick” and the cavernous rock-formation spaces of “Big Sky Land” (lead guitar there reminding just a bit of Elder‘s vivid tonality) melds frenetic boogie with surf rock guitar ping, consuming megafuzz undulations and a bluesy, boozy repeated lyric about being torn apart by memory. The roll that ends it devolves into static amp noise as Menestrina‘s bassline begins “Deadpan Blues” with an immediate sense of tension and the guitar (slide?) and snare march smoothly enter. It’s about a minute before the rush-o’-riff ensues, but man, what a blast when it does. It’s a track that takes the best of what the ’70s-worship set has brought to bear and pushes it into the now-future not only with tonal presence, but with a sharp delivery that speaks to the consciousness at work all the while. Kaleidobolt have been plenty diggable since their 2015 self-titled (review here) came out on Pink Tank, but Bitter feels like a different level of achievement.

And yeah, it should. The second album was a step forward from the first and their sound was immediately nuanced enough to make one think they were a band interested kaleidobolt bitterin growing creatively. Bitter not only builds on The Zenith Cracks in terms of its form — or in the case of the absolute diversion into noisy fuckall at the end of “Deadpan Blues,” its anti-form; fortunately the subsequent prog guitar lullaby “Interlude” gives the listener a moment to recover — but affirms Kaleidobolt‘s intent toward individualism and developing something deeper than the standard execution of genre. Even as the penultimate “Coyote” dives into Thin Lizzyism, it does so with its own take. And a mellotron! But part of what gives Bitter that sonic nuance is the recording itself, which lends particular space to Kääriäinen‘s guitar and has a consistent thread of reverb/echo that draws the ear toward the Spaghetti West without ever really going full-Morricone. A place in-between seems only too comfortable for Kaleidobolt, and with the whole-album-highlight drum performance of Lindholm as the grounding factor and Menestrina‘s winding basslines as the supporting structure, the guitar is free to construct as it will, an aesthetic focal point in a way that feels like a given for heavy rock, but is still make a conscious choice here thanks to variety in tone — that fuzz on “I am the Seer” returns on closer “Hydra” before it gets kicked in the psychedelic dirt for about nine minutes or so — and the ability of the band as a whole to affect varying degrees of mood and, from the outset on, maddening vitality, in their material. The underground universe is not short on bands updating classic forms. One would have a difficult time thinking of another doing so with as much character as Kaleidobolt bring to Bitter.

Again, the production, which was helmed by Niko Lehdontie, who’s worked with a number of experimental outfits like Oranssi Pazuzu and so is no stranger to thoughtful chaos, is part of that, but even Kaleidobolt‘s decision to push outside of the “norm” on the general sound of Bitter is emblematic of the consciousness at work behind what they’re doing here. On first listen, it can be a tough record to keep up with — because it moves, moves, moves, and requires your attention to do likewise — but if you need to, dig into “Deadpan Blues” twice in a row and already the second time you’ll hear it differently. It takes a minute to adjust to the scope of what Kaleidobolt manifest, but doing so makes the listening experience all the more satisfying, and not just for the kinetic nature of their ur-groove. Bitter is as much about aesthetic purpose as it is boogie-down, and for all its accomplishments, I’d offer zero guarantees the band are done growing. As much as their course throughout these seven tracks twists and turns, it is inextricably forward. Get down, and know why.

Kaleidobolt have tour dates upcoming this summer that will take them to Stoned from the Underground and that include shows with Yawning Man. You’ll find those and more info on the record included under the track below.

Please enjoy:

Kaleidobolt, “Deadpan Blues” official track premiere

With one foot in classic heavy power-trio rock ‘n’ roll and the other knee-deep in psychedelic frenzy, Finland’s Kaleidobolt blast off into inner space with their third album, Bitter. Having perfected their craft on the road all across Europe, with two previous albums under their collective belt, Kaleidobolt have become a fierce live experience, guaranteed to blow minds and ears.

Kaleidobolt, however, are far from your usual deafening stoner rock experience. Their music is all about texture and depth, and beneath the lysergically frenzied riffs hide worlds of exquisite soundscapes. For the new album, the band decided to take an even greater leap into worlds beyond and hired Niko Lehdontie (Kairon; IRSE! and Oranssi Pazuzu) to produce the album and Lauri Eloranta (the current go-to guy in Finland for indie pop and rock bands) to mix it.

Bitter is rock music frenzy that intermittently disintegrates into sonic cotton candy and the occasional western theme. Bitter is also Kaleidobolt’s debut for Svart Records, and we are proud to release it on May 31st on CD, vinyl LP, and digital formats.

Kaleidobolt live:
5.7 Gothenburg / Truckstop Alaska (SWE)
6.7 Malmö / @PlanB – malmö (SWE)
7.7 Kiel / Die Kieler Schaubude (GER)
8.7 Berlin / Toast Hawaii (GER)*
9.7 Wiesbaden / Schlachthof Wiesbaden (GER)*
10.7 Cottbus / Zum Faulen August, Cottbus (GER)*
11.7 Wien / ARENA WIEN (AUT)*
12.7 Salzburg / Rockhouse Salzburg (AUT)*
13.7 Erfurt / Stoned from the Underground – Festival
*with Yawning Man

Kaleidobolt is:
Sampo Kääriäinen – guitar, vocals
Marco Menestrina – bass, vocals
Valtteri Lindholm – drums

Kaleidobolt, “I am the Seer” official video

Kaleidobolt on Thee Facebooks

Kaleidobolt on Bandcamp

Svart Records website

Svart Records on Thee Facebooks

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Lord Vicar, The Black Powder: In the Bedrock

Posted in Reviews on May 2nd, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Lord Vicar The Black Powder

Lord Vicar play the doom of conviction. It’s not just a question of writing a song around a riff and putting some vocals on, but of channeling a mindset or a spiritual place through the music. It’s doom as a worldview. The Black Powder (on The Church Within) is their fourth long-player, and their first to pass the one-hour mark since their 2008 debut, Fear No Pain, as its 69 minutes make it the longest record they’ve ever done. Likewise, its 17-minute opener, “Sulfur, Charcoal and Saltpeter” — which is as close as they come to a title-track in naming the ingredients for gunpowder — is the longest single song they’ve ever produced, and with it they explore an album’s worth of textures and emotionality, guitarist Kimi Kärki switching between quiet, wistful acoustic guitar at the outset to a full-brunt tonality before opening to an airy verse underscored and filled out by Rich Jones‘ bass and held together by drummer Gareth Millsted, whose volume swaps prove no less dynamic. Atop what might be the band’s to-date masterpiece — they’ve certainly worked in longer-form material before, but never quite on the same scale — enter the vocals of Christian “Lord Chritus” Linderson, which, with a voice like regrettable history itself, bolster the emotional scathe of the music.

It would be simple for The Black Powder to play out as a retread of the band’s pedigree, and no doubt there’s plenty to draw from there, with Kärki having helped inspire a generation of traditionalist European doom in Finland’s Reverend Bizarre and Orne before diving into varying kinds of experimentalism with outfits like E-Musikgruppe Lux Ohr and Uhrijuhla and crafting moody folk as a solo singer-songwriter and Linderson‘s legacy in Count Raven, stint fronting Saint Vitus on 1992’s C.O.D., more rock-based outfit Terra Firma, and time in Goatess as well as the newer unit Python in Sweden. Lord Vicar could simply be an empty showpiece of doom playing to past strengths if they wanted. That’s not what’s happening on The Black Powder.

In the level of songwriting throughout — not just on the opener, but on the hooky “Descent,” which immediately follows, and down the line through the drastic tempo changes of centerpiece “The Temple in the Bedrock,” the Sabbathian rocker “Black Lines,” the acoustic “Nightmare” and closer “A Second Chance: Including The Wagoner, My Soul is Never Free, and Strict Master,” which resolves itself in setting the progressive melancholy of its last chorus directly against one of the record’s most fervent thrusts — the band show a commitment not just to the tenets of what makes doom doom, but to bringing a sense of identity through that and thereby push forward toward individualist expression. Their doom. It should be of little surprise to anyone with experience in listening to the band that it works. Returning to the studio with Joona Lukala, who engineered and mixed 2016’s Gates of Flesh (review here) and has mastered all of Lord Vicar‘s full-lengths and split releases, of course brings a measure of consistency to the sound, but that allows the freshness in these compositions to stand out amid the familiar elements.

lord vicar

The concrete wall of distortion in “World Encircled” feels particularly stage-born and stage-made, while the sub-three-minute “Impact” (premiered here) is as all-go a rocker as the band has ever produced, taking the swing of the early going in “The Temple in the Bedrock” or the bridge in the prior “Levitation” and making it the central notion brought to bear in a fashion that “A Second Chance” soon enough answers back in the last payoff for the album as a whole, speeding its way to a cold finish that’s only missing the applause afterward to further the live impression. At the same time, the work Linderson is doing on vocals is a highlight unto itself, with double-track layering, flourishes of harmony, and on “Nightmare,” a laid-bare feel that’s still coated in echo and soon answered back by choral keys and drums, but still rich in its intimacy and ’70s prog/folk soulfulness, gorgeous and sad in like measure. One could say the same of much of The Black Powder, but the shift in intent on “Nightmare” makes it all the more palpable.

The band, with  has stated that the loose central concept of the album is an examination of humanity manifold failings and the numbing of self that is often the response to the simple end of getting through the day surrounded by so much horror; The Black Powder as an image of snorting gunpowder like cocaine, i.e. “Black Lines.” So be it. The notion of doom standing in judgment of society at large is nothing new, going back to Black Sabbath‘s “Hand of Doom” as a primary example, but in a way, the theme also serves as analog to the effect of the record and its songs as a whole. With Millsted and Kärki as primary songwriters, Lord Vicar reinvigorate the traditional tenets of the style in such a way as to not only stand with them, but to make them new again. Their topic could hardly be more fitting for the age in which they appear — a thousand everything-owning Neros fiddling with their genitals as the world burns — but there is more to The Black Powder than cold verdict-reaching and negativity.

Somehow, it is a personal work as well. In Linderson‘s vocals and the instrumental chemistry between Jones, Kärki and Millsted as well, there’s something vibrant shining through amidst the grimness of the matter at hand. That might be the part of humanity worth saving — humanity seems to think so — but we’re not there yet, and Lord Vicar aren’t about to posture and offer some kind of hope from out of all the terror one sees when paying even the most modest amount of attention to the world. It’s not about placating. It’s not just about condemning. It’s laying it all out and asking what the hell might come next, and The Black Powder does the same thing for Lord Vicar sonically. It’s no coincidence that it is their longest album, or that it has their longest single-song, or their greatest breadth of songwriting and performance. It is a moment to which their work has been leading, and as with every step that brought them here, it feels purposeful in the extreme. A no-brainer to call it one of 2019’s best doom records, and frankly, that’s probably underselling it.

Lord Vicar, The Black Powder (2019)

Lord Vicar on Thee Facebooks

The Church Within Records on Thee Facebooks

The Church Within Records website

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DÖ Sign to Lay Bare Recordings; Astral Death Cult Due This Fall

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 22nd, 2019 by JJ Koczan

I don’t know if the one release has anything to do with the other, but in 2017, the Finnish trio hit their rehearsal space and live-recorded a demo with two songs called Astral: Death / Birth — note that death comes first — that could well feed into their impending full-length release Astral Death Cult, which will be issued through Lay Bare Recordings this Fall. Again, that’s not something I know — I don’t really know anything, pretty much ever — but if one or another of “Astral Death” and “Astral Birth” ended up on the record, would it really be a surprise? What with all that astral living and dying going on in general?

Well, whether or not they’re properly put to tape — actually, they sound pretty right on as is — both of those tracks are streaming at the bottom of this post. They serve as my introduction to , and if the same applies to you, you might find their sludgy riffs and gurgling vocals raising just the right kind of blisters. No word on an exact release date for the album, but they’ve got a teaser up and it seems likely when it lands you’ll feel the thud anyway. Just keep an ear out. You’ll hear it coming.

Lay Bare posted the following:

DÖ

Do… or DÖ we have some good news for you?

Yes! The newest addition to the Lay Bare Family is a band from The Land Of The Thousand Lakes. We are talking about the Finnish stoner doom powerhouse DÖ (means “Die” in Swedish).

Their new album “Astral Death Cult” will be out in Autumn 2019, and it will unleash six soul crushing hymns with earthy northern tone, riffs heavy as a neutron star and lyrics that salute the great cosmic forces.

Hail Cosmos! We’re all döömed!

DÖ is:
Big Dog (Guitar)
Deaf Hank (Vox & Bass)
Joe E. Deliverance (‘E’ stands for ‘Epic’) (Drums & Vox)

https://www.facebook.com/astraldeathcult
https://www.instagram.com/astraldeathcult/
https://doofficial666.bandcamp.com
https://laybarerecordings.com/
https://www.facebook.com/laybarerecordings/
https://twitter.com/laybarerecs

DÖ, Astral Death Cult album teaser

DÖ, Astral: Death / Birth (2017)

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Lord Vicar Premiere “Impact” Video from The Black Powder

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 19th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

lord vicar

As Lord Vicar prepare the ground for the release of their fourth full-length, The Black Powder, through The Church Within Records on May 3, the Scandinavian doomers unveil their first-ever official video. “Impact” is the shortest track on The Black Powder at a tidy 2:59 — by contrast, the album opens with “Sulfur, Charcoal and Saltpeter,” which runs 17:16 — and the clip accompanying compiles footage from the studio as the band were making the record. You can see guitarist Kimi Kärki, bassist Rich Jones and drummer Gareth Millsted playing through the instrumental tracks together and vocalist Christian “Lord Chritus” Linderson adding his voice afterward, but of course it’s all edited together to give a flow, which is fair enough since flow is a major factor throughout The Black Powder as a whole.

Its nine songs run a willfully consuming 69 minutes, and if that sounds like a slog, welcome to doom. Now more than a decade removed from their debutLord Vicar The Black Powder album, Fear No PainLord Vicar have long since mastered their approach — a pedigree that includes Reverend BizarreCount Raven and Saint Vitus doesn’t hurt either — and they fill their time not with simple riff-and-nod drudgery, but with material that can’t help but be vibrant despite its so, so thoroughly doomed vibe. In that regard, as well as its lyrics, “Impact” is aptly named. It’s probably the speediest whole track on the offering, though you could get a yardstick out to measure it against “Levitation” or parts of “The Temple in the Bedrock” if you really wanted to, but more than that, it puts the emphasis on exactly what video depicts: the band, in the room, hitting it. Lord Vicar are obviously schooled in classic doom — Kärki and Chritus kind of helped shape it, especially in Europe — but don’t at all take that to mean they’re not also building something new from out of the past. In following up 2016’s Gates of Flesh (review here), the four-piece showcase a vitality that thrives in darkness and an organic doom that needs no posturing to make its aesthetic statement.

I’ll have a full review of The Black Powder on May 2 (if the current calendar holds), but in addition to the video premiere for “Impact,” Kärki was kind enough to send some comment on making the album along with the lyrics to the track. Again, there some stuff on the record that is much, much slower, so “Impact” doesn’t necessarily represent everything Lord Vicar do across that almost-70-minute stretch, but it sure is fucking righteous.

Please enjoy:

Lord Vicar, “Impact” official video premiere

Kimi Kärki on “Impact”:

I was born in Good Friday back in 1976, and have always appreciated the fact, so it’s a nice date for the video premiere.

It was a wonderful Finnish winter adventure to record our fourth album The Black Powder. Pretty much everything was done in February and March 2019, including mixing and mastering, again with Joona Lukala at Noise for Fiction. Everything is still fresh for us as well, and we can’t wait to get to play these monsters live in May! We have had a new bass player, Rich Jones, aboard for quite long now, but this is the first time he was in studio with us. We were able to hammer drums, bass and the first rhythm guitar live, and that adds a nice organic feel for the album. Gareth (Millsted, drums) was more involved in songwriting, and this time we arranged the songs quite carefully in Switzerland before hitting the studio. Chritus (vocals) lost his voice before his second studio day, but this medicine that is meant for snake bites healed him nicely!

We never did a proper video for Lord Vicar before, and decided to do it totally DIY for ’Impact’, the seventh track of the album. Studio live footage was an obvious choice for this kind of a hard rocking tune, but I also wanted to give a visual nod for the theme of mortality and how sometimes authors are forgotten and only receive proper fame post mortem. Nightmares feature heavily on this album, so this is a tribute to some artists who captured the darkness, shadows, and sheer horror in writing.

Have a Good Friday, up the hammers, down the nails!

Lyrics:
Can you feel the Earth approaching,
Red horizon turn?
Time has frozen between two worlds,
Frozen, empty mind

One thing you have surely lost,
The one thing you still yearn
Frozen people always want to
Leave this world behind

See the roof come falling down
Red horizon turning round
Broken people are earthbound
All of them will hit the ground

You were always first to go,
First to test your mind
People thought that you’d be strong
But you were first to burn

See the roof come falling down
Red horizon turning round
Broken people are earthbound
All of them will hit the ground

All of them will hit the ground
All of them supposed to heal
All of them without a sound
All of them are true and real

All of them, they will be found
All of them, they will be read
All of them below the ground
All of them will conquer death

Lord Vicar and Thronehammer live in May!
03.Mai Würzburg (D) @Immerhin
04 Mai Weikersheim (D) @Club W71
05 Mai Karlsruhe (D) @P8
06 Mai Hamburg (D) @Marx
07 Mai Szczecin (PL) @Jambar
08 Mai Berlin (D) @Slaughterhouse Moabit
09 Mai Halle (D) @Hühnermanhattan
10 Mai Oberhausen (D) @Helvete
11 Mai Tilburg (NL) @Little Devil Doom Days Festival

Lord Vicar is:
Chritus on vocals
Kimi on guitars
Milly on drums
Rich on bass

Lord Vicar on Thee Facebooks

The Church Within Records on Thee Facebooks

The Church Within Records website

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Kaleidobolt Sign to Svart Records for Bitter out May 31; New Video Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 28th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

kaleidobolt

It’s a marriage made in Finnish weirdness. Helsinki-based progressive heavy rockers Kaleidobolt are a natural fit for Svart Records given their blend of old and new, prog and and heavy, this and that, up and down, side to side, space and earth, all good things and so on. Granted that’s a pretty wide standard, but the jazzy elements of what they’ve done over the course of their two LPs to date — 2016’s ultra-righteous The Zenith Cracks (review here) and the prior no-slouch-either 2015 self-titled (review here) — only make the alliance more reasonable, as Svart has readily shown an affinity for such things in past offerings. Everybody wins, is what I’m saying, and all the more those who take a few minutes out of their hectic day to dig into the new video “I Am the Seer” — at the bottom of the post, duh — and thereby get an early sampling of Kaleidobolt‘s wares on their impending third album, Bitter, which will mark their debut on the label upon its release May 31.

These guys have been on their own wavelength of heavy since they started out, and one is glad to see them continue the thread. Looking forward to the record.

Info came down the PR wire:

kaleidobolt bitter

KALEIDOBOLT set release date for SVART debut, reveal first video

Svart Records sets May 31st as the international release date for Kaleidobolt’s highly anticipated third album, Bitter. The album, which will be the band’s debut for the label, will be released on CD and vinyl LP formats.

With one foot in classic heavy power-trio rock ‘n’ roll and the other knee-deep in psychedelic frenzy, Finland’s Kaleidobolt blast off into inner space with their third album, Bitter. Having perfected their craft on the road all across Europe, with two previous albums under their collective belt, Kaleidobolt have become a fierce live experience, guaranteed to blow minds and ears.

Kaleidobolt, however, are far from your usual deafening stoner rock experience. Their music is all about texture and depth, and beneath the lysergically frenzied riffs hide worlds of exquisite soundscapes. For the new album, the band decided to take an even greater leap into worlds beyond and hired Niko Lehdontie (Kairon; IRSE! and Oranssi Pazuzu) to produce the album and Lauri Eloranta (the current go-to guy in Finland for indie pop and rock bands) to mix it.

“We aim to make music that sounds dangerous, that is on its way to critical mass and could all fall apart at any moment,” comments bassist Marco Menestrina. “This time, we were thankful to have Niko the producer with us to ensure things were kept freaky and noisy enough.”

Bitter is rock music frenzy that intermittently disintegrates into sonic cotton candy and the occasional western theme. Bitter is also Kaleidobolt’s debut for Svart Records, and we are proud to release it on May 31st on CD, vinyl LP, and digital formats.

In the meantime, see & hear a special video for the new track “I am the Seer.”

Tracklisting for Kaleidobolt’s Bitter
1. Another Toothpick
2. Big Sky Land
3. I Am The Seer
4. Deadpan Blues
5. Interlude
6. Coyote
7. Hydra

https://www.facebook.com/kaleidobolt
https://kaleidobolt.bandcamp.com/
www.svartrecords.com
www.facebook.com/svartrecords
www.twitter.com/svartrecords

Kaleidobolt, “I am the Seer” official video

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