Larman Clamor Reveal Details for Beetle Crown and Steel Wand

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 28th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Mr. Von Wieding.

It’s always fascinating to see what Alexander von Wieding has come up with next for his one-man project, Larman Clamor, now getting ready to issue the fifth outing under the moniker, Beetle Crown and Steel Wand. The Hamburg-based artist/musician continues to work at a speedy clip, and the latest full-length and third for Small Stone will also be the follow-up to 2013′s Alligator Heart (review here). One never knows quite where von Wieding might be headed at any given moment — the last offering stripped down some of the more elaborate arrangements of 2012′s Frogs (review here), but a pleasingly strange trip into swamp blues is almost assured, and like last year, the year before, and the year before that, a welcome journey whenever undertaken.

No solid release date as yet, but if Beetle Crown and Steel Wand gets out before the end of 2014, that would give von Wieding five releases in the four years, which even for a one-man show is an impressive pace.

Here’s the album info, hoisted from the Larman Clamor Thee Facebooks page:

Mr. Von Wieding's new album.

Friends of the Clamor, it is that time of the year again to announce a new album!

The musical journey continues with “Beetle Crown & Steel Wand”, Larman Clamor’s 5th album.

There is no fixed release date as of yet, but it will most likely be out on the mighty fine Small Stone Records this fall or near the end of 2014. Let the chips fall where they may and let the spirits speed my hands to get the artwork done.

In the meantime, here you all have a peek at the album cover and the tracklisting.

Feel free to spread the good news.

Larman Clamor – Beetle Crown & Steel Wand
1. Beetle Crown & Steel Wand
2. My Lil’ Ghost
3. Eggs In The Sand
4. Wilderness, Wilderness
5. We Shine Alright
6. Caravan Of Ghouls
7. Tangerine Nightfall
8. Alter Yer Ways
9. Bleak Heart’s Night Waltz
10. Drone Monger
11. Aurora Snarling
13. Her Majesty, The Mountain
13. She Was Born A Sorceress

Thanks for your support!

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Larman-Clamor/132397233457898
http://larmanclamor.bandcamp.com/
https://smallstone.bandcamp.com

Larman Clamor, Alligator Heart (2013)

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Friday Full-Length: My Sleeping Karma, Satya

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 25th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

My Sleeping Karma, Satya (2008)

I was fishing through YouTube as I sometimes do looking for something to close out the week, and once I got to My Sleeping Karma‘s Satya and got about two seconds into opener “Ahimsa,” I knew I had no reason to search any further. The German heavy psych instrumentalists’ second album, released in 2008, was the first record I ever reviewed for this site (review here; though honestly it’s so needlessly packed with internet snark that I’m almost embarrassed to post the link), so obviously it has sentimental value there, but considering how hard My Sleeping Karma has worked on the two albums since, 2010′s Tri (review here) and their 2012 Napalm Records debut, Soma (review here), to push themselves creatively and further their craft, I think there’s plenty of aesthetic value as well. More than I appreciated at the time, and I liked Satya plenty when I first heard it. I guess I was figuring out how to do this and thought the only way to go about it was to be a wiseass about everything. Hindsight makes fools of us all.

Satya, however, only sounds richer with the context of the subsequent years, the Aschaffenburg four-piece blossoming in that time into one of the forerunners of the European heavy psych movement, moving beyond the jammy Colour Haze influence that marked their earliest work and emerging with a character all their own that, by now, has become a point of influence for others in their wake. I’m not sure they had such lofty ambitions six or seven years ago when Satya was coming together, but listening back to it now, their grip on their aesthetic was firm and they knew how to elicit movement within individual songs while also creating an overarching full-length flow. They had some stuff they were still figuring out — experiments with vocals, samples, etc. — but you can hear the heart of what My Sleeping Karma has become in this material, and more than that, right now, it’s really hitting the spot.

Should go without saying at this point, but I hope you enjoy it.

Apologies for the lack of posts today. Not looking for sympathy or “sorry for the loss” or anything like that — just letting you know what’s up — but I had an uncle pass away this week and after driving back up to Jersey last Sunday, had to come back down on Tuesday. Wrote the obituary, actually, and sort of ghost-wrote the eulogy with my cousin, which was an experience. Anyway, this afternoon and this evening was the wake, so pretty much the whole day went to that. Not much I could really do about it and sometimes that kind of thing just needs to take priority. I appreciate the understanding, and if you were looking for more posts, stick around next week because there’s a lot coming.

I’ve been asked to do another Red Kunz premiere. The last one went so awesomely well, that there’s another live video I’m in talks with the labels to get going. It might be Monday or might be later on or of course the whole thing could fall through and they could go a completely different direction, but I’ve got my hopes up it comes together, since that EP has a really cool sound and is worth getting the word out on as much as possible. Anyway, fingers crossed.

Also next week, I’ve got other family stuff going Wednesday, so I’m going to try to put together a podcast and get it posted, but that’ll probably be it for that day. I’m backed up on Radio adds, so those will go up, and I’m planning on posting the bio I wrote for the new Lo-Pan album, and a review of the new Karma to Burn. I’m so backed up on reviews it’s sad. I was thinking maybe of taking one week and just putting up 300 words of everything on the pile, doing that and nothing else, each record its own post, just to plow through everything and get back to square one. Not sure I’ll ever be that brave, but if you’ve sent something in, please know I’m doing my best. It’s been a time the last few months.

After the memorial tomorrow, though, I’m driving back up to Massachusetts. I’ll hopefully have time to stop off at home, or at least empty out the car, but then it’s off to the airport to pick up The Patient Mrs., who returns from Greece tomorrow night. It’s been a long month and I can’t wait to see her. This will have been the longest we’ve ever been apart since we first got together almost 18 years ago, and I survived, me and the dog, but with the move and everything, it’ll be so good to have her home and I feel like I’ll be able to get my head on straight a little bit for the first time in at least a couple weeks. Point is I can’t wait. The thought of seeing her has been carrying me through the past couple days.

Before I forget, I also passed the 1,000 followers mark on Twitter this week. That’s more than I ever thought would care enough to click the button, so thank you to everyone for the support there.

I hope you have a great and safe weekend. I’ll be back home on Monday and we’ll pick up then. Right on.

Please check out the forum and the radio stream.

The Obelisk Forum

The Obelisk Radio

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Rodeo Drive, Morbid Beauty: Setting the Balance

Posted in Reviews on July 22nd, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Stoner rock.

According to the liner panel of the digipak, Morbid Beauty, the debut full-length from Berlin-based DIY heavy rockers Rodeo Drive, was recorded in “October 2014.” Certainly anything’s possible, and if the album does indeed hail from the near-future, it’s got a modern take on fuzz and flourishes of heavy psychedelia to match what one might expect. Featuring Samsara Blues Experiment‘s Hans Eiselt on bass and vocals and recorded by Richard Behrens, formerly of the same outfit and currently handling low end in Heat, Rodeo Drive hit on classic power trio methods and present them with a newcomer act’s intensity of purpose. Joined in the band by guitarist Friedrich Stemmer and René Schulze on drums/synth, Eiselt takes some cues in patterning vocals from his main outfit — one might recognize throaty, echoing shouts from Samsara Blues Experiment‘s earlier days — but on the whole is more stylistically geared toward straightforward, traditional stonerisms. Stemmer leads the charge throughout most of Morbid Beauty‘s eight tracks/41 minutes, but moments of adventurousness shine through and Rodeo Drive show a bit of boldness in their choices throughout, like opening with “Stoner of Mass Destruction,” a six-minute instrumental that, until closer “Snuff Eater,” also proves to be their jammiest stretch. Even there, however, what Rodeo Drive most specialize in their first time out is establishing a riff, working around it, and then returning to it in bigger, sometimes slower form. “Stoner of Mass Destruction” does this effectively, as do “All in Vain,” “Poultry Bro,” “Vlansch” and “Snuff Eater,” though the moods of these tracks vary around a consistent, jazzy chemistry between Eiselt and Schulze and the varyingly psychedelic and dense tonality in Stemmer‘s guitar.

Particularly with Eiselt‘s vocal delivery, the recording captures a live feel, and that proves all the better for the deft rhythmic changes that begin to show up on “Stoner of Mass Destruction” and continue into the shorter “All in Vein” (tied with “Poultry Bro” for the briefest here at 2:38) and well beyond. The second cut has less space for jamming out, but serves to demonstrate early the diversity in Rodeo Drive‘s approach, which continues to shift as Morbid Beauty progresses, whether it’s to the extended drum solo intro to “The Void,” which unfolds with a Songs for the Deaf-style thrust, or “Poultry Bro,” with its circular vibe and intricate boogie feel, Schulze running back and forth on toms to build a tension that opens to a wide-strummed chorus. If one was to divide Morbid Beauty into sides, “Vlansch” would likely end the first (the back cover of the CD supports this), and it does so playing slow psychedelic blues off bigger-riffed nod, keeping the tempo down, especially in relation to “Poultry Bro,” out of which it emerges, and the mood wistful even as Stemmer‘s winding lead opens to jammier wah-shuffle. It’s not long before they’re back to the turned-on downer vibe, Eiselt‘s voice raw without sounding like a put-on, and the lumbering riff from whence they came, building it to a finish that fades its rumble out before the grunge guitar opening of “Earth Dark Diseases” begins the album’s second half, which isn’t necessarily more stylistically adventurous than the first, but differently arranged, with three tracks instead of five, “Earth Dark Diseases” (7:35) and “Snuff Eater” (7:55) being the longest songs with the instrumental “Aggrestic” (4:37) between.

I took this screen cap when I posted the video and they wound up using it as a press shot. Fair enough.  A little dark, maybe, but otherwise alright.

As noted, “Snuff Eater” is where Rodeo Drive are at their jammiest, and though it reaches similar lengths, “Earth Dark Diseases” has a different personality. Eiselt‘s vocals are almost a growl over Stemmer‘s plus-sized riff, and while it opens up in the middle, there’s a moody sensibility maintained even during the instrumental build, coming to a head just before the five-minute mark when the guitar and drums drop out and the bass leads back into the progression that will serve as the foundation for the next two minutes’ groove. The bass also starts “Aggrestic,” though Eiselt‘s soon joined by Stemmer and Schulze, and what seems like another jangly sort of rush is offset temporarily by noodling and subsequent forward motion. It ultimately adds little the album hasn’t already put in Rodeo Drive‘s wheelhouse, but as a precedent and a break between the two longer cuts, an entirely instrumental track isn’t a bad thing to have. And though it reaches nearly eight minutes long, “Snuff Eater” doesn’t lose track of where it’s headed, and the immersive jam pulls back to the verse/chorus structure before the song is over, as if to remind listeners that Rodeo Drive haven’t forgotten. As the first public offering of their songwriting, that’s good to know, and like the bulk of Morbid Beauty, “Snuff Eater” sets the trio on a path from which to progress from here on out. They’ve reportedly been a band for eight years, so I don’t know what kind of pace they’re working with in terms of releases, but Morbid Beauty establishes a chemistry worth a follow-up and provides a strong front-to-back level of quality in the meantime. I’ll take it on its own if that’s how it’s coming, but I’d much rather see Morbid Beauty as a sign of things to come when Rodeo Drive get to the actual near future.

Rodeo Drive, Morbid Beauty (2014)

Rodeo Drive on Thee Facebooks

Rodeo Drive on Bandcamp

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Heat to Release Labyrinth on Aug. 29

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 17th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Thee band.

Formerly aligned to Electric Magic for the LP/CD release of their first album, Heat/Old Sparky (review here), Berlin heavy rockers Heat have announced they’ll issue their second offering, Labyrinth, via This Charming Man Records on Aug. 29. Preorders are available now for the CD or LP editions from the semi-retro five-piece, which features Samsara Blues Experiment bassist Richard Behrens, who also recorded the first outing. Charlie Paschen seems to have helmed Labyrinth, but the sound remains warm and natural in line with Old Sparky, as you can hear on the new song “Siamese Smile” below.

To support the new record — the cover art for which was handled by Adam Burke – the band will head out on a European tour beginning Sept. 4, and This Charming Man will have a reissue of Old Sparky with new art as well. All confirmed dates listed below with the album info, fresh off the PR wire:

Thee album.

Hard rockers HEAT announce release of new album Labyrinth

Berliners to release second full length via This Charming Man Records, along with reissue of debut on 29th August 2014

Following on from the success of their 2012 self-titled debut, This Charming Man Records is pleased to announce the release Labyrinth, of the second album by the Berlin-based hard rock outfit.

Heat are unmistakably taken with a time when all great records came adorned with monochrome swirls and elaborate sleeves depicting worlds of necromancy, witches and cosmic encounters.

Featuring former members of The Hara-Kee-Rees, Samsara Blues Experiment and Grandloom their self-titled debut on Electric Magic Records was a heavy-blues driven journey into the very heart of the 1970s. Which, regardless of your particular predilection for classic rock saw the Berlin five-piece strike every chord.

On their follow up – much like Swedish hard rock revivalists Graveyard and Horisont – Heat continue to revel in the buzz of audacious twin guitar solos, Hammond organs and telepathic band jams.

Driving tracks like ‘Siamese Smile’, ‘Free World’ and ‘Barbarossa’ pack unabashed guitar spectacles atop big drum fills, rolling bass lines and Patrick Fülling’s strutting vocal front, often over extended compositions that run the gamut of twentieth century rock history. Bursting with shuffling bluesy boogies and dark, introspective moments that owe a sizeable riff or two to Deep Purple, Wishbone Ash, Atomic Rooster and Jerusalem Labyrinth is an unstoppable force for fans of British prog, hard US rock and NWOBHM.

Labyrinth will be officially released on 29th August, along with the reissue of the band’s debut (with exclusive new artwork) via This Charming Man Records

LP pre-order

CD pre-order

iTunes pre-order link – http://snip.ftpromo.net/heat

Heat:
Marcus Töpfer – Drums
Matthias Schult – Guitar
Marco Rischer – Guitar
Patrick Fülling – Vocals
Richard Behrens – Bass

Tour Dates:
23/08/14 – Sala Teatru Brama, Goleniow, Poland
4/09/14 – Record Release at SO36, Berlin, Germany
5/09/14 – Sky High Festival, Offenbach, Germany
6/09/14 – Schweinskopf Festival, Cuxhaven, Germany
12/09/14 – 1000Fryd (w. Jex Thoth), Aalborg, Denmark
13/09/14 – KB18, Kopenhagen, Denmark
14/09/14 – TBA
15/09/14 – Hafenklang, Hamburg, Germany
16/09/14 – Waldmeister, Solingen, Germany
17/09/14 – Heretic Club (w. Aqua Nebula Oscillator), Bordeaux, France
18/09/14 – TBA
19/09/14 – Hard Club, Porto, Portugal
20/09/14 – Retrovisor, León, Spain
21/09/14 – TBA
22/09/14 – Rocksound, Barcelona, Spain
23/09/14 – Brin de Zinc, Cambery, France
24/09/14 – Schüxenhaus, Ins, Switzerland
25/09/14 – Coq d’Or, Olten, Switzerland
26/09/14 – Backstage (w. Orcus Chylde), München, Germany
27/09/14 – Sound n Arts (w. Orcus Chylde), Bamberg, Germany
10/10/14 – TCM Fest Gleis 22, Münster, Germany
29/11/14 – Deep Sound City Festival, Halle, Germany

heatberlin.bandcamp.com
www.facebook.com/Heatthelights
instagram.com/heatberlin

Heat, “Siamese Smile”

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Dunst, Archimedes Waffen: Daily Mantras

Posted in Reviews on July 14th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Archimedes' bowl.

Originally recorded in 2011 and digitally released in 2013, the second and final full-length, Archimedes Waffen, from German progressive heavy psych instrumentalists Dunst sees a revived presence in the physical realm thanks to a new vinyl issue on Electric Magic Records, the imprint helmed by Samsara Blues Experiment guitarist/vocalist Christian PetersDunst‘s relationship with that band goes even deeper than the label association as well, since Archimedes Waffen was recorded by SBE bassist Richard Behrens at Big Snuff Studio in Berlin, about 90 minutes south of Dunst‘s former hometown of Templin. There are some shared sonic elements too, but it rings more like a commonality of mindset than direct influence. Dunst – which prior to disbanding was comprised of guitarist Daniel Rexhausen, bassist Johannes Schulz, drummer Philip Marschall and effects noisemaker/vocalist Sebastian Adolph (there are way more effects noises on the album than there are vocals) — released their self-titled debut in 2011, and here on the follow-up, they come across well established within a heavy psychedelic approach to jamming. Over the course of six extended tracks, they explore the spaces between such heavyweights as Colour HazeMy Sleeping KarmaCausa Sui, and indeed Samsara Blues Experiment, while working in the pursuit of their own musical identity. Already pushing the bounds of vinyl at 53 minutes, the Electric Magic version of Archimedes Waffen cuts down the original album length from over an hour, pulling out an intro, outro and the 10-minute “Vincent Raven,” which can still be heard on the digital edition, and jumbles the original tracklisting to take better advantage of an LP’s two-sided structure. Nonetheless, Archimedes Waffen remains an immersive slice of heavy jamming, familiar in some aspects but portraying a building character in progress.

Adolph‘s synth swirl and other effects go a long way in adding to that personality early on, giving the mix more depth than it might otherwise have. In comparison to Dunst‘s first outing — putting aside a somewhat rawer production as well – Archimedes Waffen presents a much broader range, the relaxed stretches of opener “Kincha King” immediately engaging the listener with a patient, hypnotic roll, where parts of Dunst‘s Dunst feel a little more jagged with just RexhausenSchulz, and Marschall present. It’s a smoother sound on the second album, in other words, and as the 10-minute launch point gives way to the title-track — which, with “We Can Try to Play Like or We Can Try…” and “Hammerhigh,” is one of three cuts that hovers just on the other side of seven and a half minutes long; as brief as Dunst get – that fluidity is maintained, and Adolph adds to the roll and chemistry found well intact from the other three players. Rexhausen takes a lead prior to the midsection of “Archimedes Waffen” that’s almost as impressive for how Schulz and Marschall meet it head-on for the guitarist’s own playing, and they continue to move endearingly through peaks and valleys, taking a ground-up linear build in the second half of the track to its natural, voluminous conclusion. The subsequent “We Can Try to Play Like or We Can Try…” is similarly structured with two distinct payoffs, but presents a different take with a more prominent bass from Schulz (not a complaint) and airier noodling in the guitars contrasted by active jazz drumming. There’s less of Adolph as side A rounds out with a peaceful fade, but by then Dunst have established an open feel that would seem to allow the effects wash to come and go as it pleases without interrupting the overarching flow.

Read more »

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Freak Valley Festival 2014 Photo Gallery by Falk-Hagen Bernshausen

Posted in Visual Evidence on June 18th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Because I very, very rarely do this kind of thing involving someone else’s work, let me specifically point out I DID NOT TAKE THESE PICTURES. I was not fortunate enough to be at this fest, and even if I had been at Freak Valley in Netphen, Germany, May 29-31, I’m not this good. All the photos in this gallery were by Falk-Hagen Bernshausen, who serves as the festival’s in-house photographer. I don’t even know how many images he sent me, but I’ve gone through and picked out a few from what you can see above was a packed schedule, starting with the headliners and then working by day from there.

If you’re the type who usually does the clicky-makey-biggy thing with the pictures around here, you might notice it doesn’t work on this post. Truth be told, it took me a very long time to get all the photos here to load, and with so many pics, it crashed the site more than once in the making. Resizing the images was the only way I could get it all to fit. I apologize for any inconvenience making it work may have caused.

Still, it’s only through the generosity of Mr. Bernshausen that I’m able to do this, and I thank him profusely for sharing his work. Please note there were more bands he shot than appear, and please also visit his website here, and check out the Freak Valley page as well.

THURSDAY, MAY 29

Radio Moscow

Papir

Bloody Hammers

Read more »

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Black Space Riders Post New Video for “Space Angel (Memitim)”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 27th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Somewhere between Killing Joke and Pink Floyd, maybe? I don’t know where the sonic terrain in which Germany’s Black Space Riders reside, but I know they don’t share it with many other bands. The Muenster five-piece released their third album, D:REI, at the end of January and have a new video for the track “Space Angel (Memitim)” from it. The song captures the group’s jammier, exploratory side, and while the video is an edit of the track, since it only cuts down the original 10 minutes to a little under nine, there’s still plenty of time to get a feel for the cosmic vibes Black Space Riders are honing.

Accordingly, the video crosses through a range of tripped-out visual effects. The band itself doesn’t actually appear, but there’s plenty to look at besides with the various swirls and constant forward-moving feel carrying you through. As the band states, they edited the track to catch the “shortened attention spans” of YouTube viewers. I guess we’ll see if cutting a minute off does the trick, but it’s a cool groove anyway, and however long they want to make it last, there’s little that’d make you want to turn it off once you put it on. I can’t account for the fickle realities of media in the age of instant gratification, but “Space Angel (Memitim)” is worth taking the time to get lost in.

As you can see by clicking play below. Enjoy:

Black Space Riders, “Space Angel (Memitim)” official video

An epic Space-Rock-Track taken from BLACK SPACE RIDERS third studio-Album “D:REI”.

This is an edited version, the intro was cut shorter matching to the shortended attention span of most YouTube-listeners (with – of course – the exeption of YOU!!!!)

The visuals and video-animations were created by our friend Blood Meridian (lost in space!).

Make sure to get your physical copy of that Album: http://www.blackspaceriders.com/shop

let´s stay in contact: https://www.facebook.com/BlackSpaceRiders

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Desertfest Berlin 2015 Poster Revealed; Earlybird Tickets on Sale Now

Posted in Visual Evidence on May 15th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Wherever it might be taking place, Desertfest does not waste time. Mere weeks after the 2014 fests in London and Berlin, Desertfest Belgium was announced, Sleep were revealed as the headliners for London next year, and now comes word that tickets for Berlin are already on sale. 11 months out from April 23, 2015, you can get your Desertfest Berlin ticket — and further, if you do, they’ve got a t-shirt to go with it. Not too shabby.

The Berlin Desertfest, which is presented by Sound of Liberation, has tapped French poster art/screenprinting duo Elvisdead to create the official event poster, and you can see the results in the worm-eaten-looking skull below. Elvisdead also did the 2013 poster, which was similarly themed if not necessarily as directly dark (Ammo did this year’s). Nobody’s been revealed for the lineup as yet, but as past years have shown, the poster isn’t necessarily indicative of the brutality level of the fest itself. Probably a good thing or they’d have to rename it altogether, but still, it’s a cool-looking design and it’s probably best to get used to looking at it now, since there are another 343 days until the fest kicks off.

Click the poster for a higher-res look and find the order link for Desertfest Berlin 2015 tickets below, courtesy of Sound of Liberation:

*** DESERTFEST 2015 POSTER – ELVISDEAD ARE BACK ***

Hey Guys,

So far you got a preview on this page, but it’s time now to unveil the whole OFFICIAL POSTER for DESERTFEST BERLIN 2015! As you can see, our great Elvisdead are back!

We hope you’ll like it as much as we do!

—–

Remember that our EARLY BIRD HARD TICKETS are already on sale on http://woolheads.com/cms/produkt-kategorie/festivalmerchandise/desertfestberlin/tickets-desertfestberlin!

Order yours before the end of MAY and get a free shirt, button and sticker of your choice! Rock on…

Elvisdead on Thee Facebooks

Desertfest Berlin’s website

Sound of Liberation on Thee Facebooks

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Church of Misery, Kadavar, The Atomic Bitchwax and More to Play Void Fest 2014 in Germany

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 14th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Having a cool festival lineup is one thing — it’s a huge thing — but driving toward an aesthetic is something completely different and pivotal in creating a vibe for any event, whatever it might be. Germany’s Void Fest, which is set for Aug. 1 and 2 in Kötzting in Bavaria with tickets limited to 1,000, seems to be well on its way to that end. The bill runs from the progressive black metal of Sun Worship to the riotous stoner rock of Church of Misery, and with film screenings and a focus on local culture, it seems like an experience that begins with the music and will encompass much more than just that. It looks like a great way to spend a couple days.

They put it thusly:

The Void society was established in spring 2012. Up from its creation Void was planned as an altruistic friendly society with unpaid workforce and do it yourself intention. The idea behind Void is to join forces of people who are interested in music. The goal was to score with new innovative bands and through that strenghten our local cultural landscape.

Since the founding Void organized several well visited shows in the bavarian forest and its surrounding cities, such as Bad Kötzting and Regenburg. While allways keeping it familiar and friendly the shows soon drew big attention. Meanwhile a few bands had some of their last gigs at Void Fest before getting signed a major label contract.

D.I.Y. has always been a big point for the societies work. Next to fairtrade screenprinted merchandise shirts, patches and bags, each band playing at Void Fest gets its own hand drawn posters. The whole festival structure is set up by society members during their spare time.

Allways trying to create unique music events for every people, Void is still trying to do things different than others. Merely the best ideas fit the demands the young society has given itself.

Confirmed lineup so far:
The Atomic Bitchwax
Church of Misery
Kadavar
Rose Windows
Suns of Thyme
H A R K
Atlantis
Brahm
The Wulffs
Doomina
Oddjob Men
Mother’s Cake
Sun Worship

https://voidfest.bigcartel.com/
https://www.facebook.com/VoidFest/
http://instagram.com/voidfest#
http://voidfest.de/

Void Fest 2013 Documentary

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Electric Moon, Mind Explosion: Into the Outer

Posted in Reviews on April 7th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

German improvisors Electric Moon are rarely at rest, and for anyone who’s been following the jam-minded three-piece’s progress these last several years across their slew of studio and live albums, the latest of them, dubbed Mind Explosion, marks yet another interesting turn. When it comes to the band, comprised of guitarist/keyboardist/recording engineer Dave “Sula Bassana” Schmidt, bassist/visual artist/sometimes-vocalist Komet Lulu and drummer Marcus Schnitzler, the surest bet you can make about any given release is that it’s going to be the most psychedelic thing you’re going to hear that day. That said, I’ve always taken their sound to have more to it than just that, and likewise the band’s mission, which seems geared toward driving at the very heart of sonic collaboration between committed players. Schmidt, Lulu and Schnitzler avoid missteps along the way and get to the center of the galaxy of jamming. Their concoctions — Mind Explosion presents four of them, for a total of about 80 minutes — are hypnotic, swinging, exciting and saturated in shroomic properties. What stands Mind Explosion out from the catalog is that it’s a live album that basically serves the same function as a studio full-length would. Electric Moon are no strangers to live releases; plenty have shown up on LP, CD and limited CD-R from Schmidt‘s Sulatron Records. But where outings like the two-volume Live 2012 CDs (review here) were essentially live bootlegs, the presentation on Mind Explosion is like that of a complete studio outing. It’s bridging that gap.

And in so doing, it’s continuing Electric Moon‘s journey into the sort of creative Big Bang that drives heavy psychedelia to start with. Why can’t an album that would be recorded live just be live on stage? Why can’t an album be a live album? Why does there need to be a distinction from one to the other? The four tracks of Mind Explosion – “Trip to the Moon” (21:45), “Kaleidoscopeephole” (22:14), “The Picture” (17:04) and “Mind Explosion” (18:50) — offer plenty of time to explore these questions, and but for the periodic interjections of crowd noise, shouts in the middle of especially engaging turns, etc., there’s very little to separate the album from anything Electric Moon have jammed out in the studio. In terms of the sound quality, it’s probably Schnitzler‘s drums that most give it away, but his cymbals sound full and have no problem creating a wash to back the spaced-out effects work from Lulu and Schmidt, who also come through clearly. Together, they ride the jams out as far as they want to go, riffs and leads topping sure-footed rhythms — the bass-tone that begins “The Picture” is as much a foundation for the song’s unfolding as one could ask — in a dynamic that has only grown over time. They’re never overly technical or looking to put on a clinic as much as a show, and part of what makes Mind Explosion successful as a release even into its later reaches is the band’s sense of bringing the audience with them on these sonic voyages. As far out as it is — and it is — Electric Moon‘s sound never lets go of also being inviting.

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Video Trailers Posted for Desertfest 2014 in London and Berlin

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 3rd, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

I’ll admit to carrying more than a bit of jealousy in my heart for those who’ll be in either London or Berlin at the end of the month when Desertfest gets underway in both towns. Either city is a trek I’d gladly make if I had cash for the flight, and I suppose if being broke has any upside, it’s saving me from having to choose one over the other. Poor consolation for not getting over there, but frankly I’ll take what I can get at this point.

A video trailer back Stubb‘s Jack Dickinson surfaced for the London fest about a week ago, and today Berlin followed suit in posting a trailer for the fest there. Again, either way you go, you can’t really lose. Whether you’re seeing Causa Sui and Stoned Jesus in Berlin or Pombagira and Borracho in London, you’re in for an amazing weekend you won’t soon forget and an experience of a community coming into its own even as it continues to discover what that means. This is a very cool year for Desertfest. So was last year. The one before that wasn’t half bad either.

You get the point though, and the point is me, unemployed and sulking. I’m sure I’ll have more about Desertfest before it actually launches, but I wanted to post these clips together just to give a sample of the vibe of both festivals and what they have to offer the discerning gormandizers who might hit them up. Desertfest Berlin runs April 24-26 at Astra Kulturhaus in Berlin, Germany, and Desertfest London picks up April 25-27 at various venues in Camden Town. Info in the clips and at the links.

Desertfest Berlin 2014 trailer

24th, 25th, 26th April 2014 : DESERTFEST BERLIN

THURSDAY 24th – Spirit Caravan Official – Sleepy Sun – Siena Root – ASG – Sixty Watt Shaman – Pet The Preacher – ANCIIENTS – The Midnight Ghost Train – Cojones
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FRIDAY 25th — Kvelertak – Causa Sui – Church of Misery Official – Elder – Huata – HULL – GOZU – BLACK RAINBOWS – Prisma Circus – The Moth – Red Stoner Sun – MANTAR
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SATURDAY 26th — Clutch – Radio Moscow – The Machine – The Ultra Electric Mega Galactic – Stoned Jesus – THE GRAVIATORS – Sasquatch – Radar Men from the Moon – SardoniS – Castle – Metal Band – Powder for Pigeons – DoctoR DooM

Desertfest Berlin website

Desertfest London 2014 trailer

Desertfest 2014 is heavier than before & Taking over Camden, London during the 25-27th April.With over 60 bands from the underground stoner / doom and sludge scene peforminng this years fesitval is not to be missed, Headliners are Spirit Caravan / Kvlertak & Boris, plus weedeater, church of misery, ASG, blues Pills and many more…for the full line up please click below.

Desertfest London website

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Rodeo Drive Post “All in Vain” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 2nd, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

“All in Vain” is a quick 2:45, but it gives a decent sampling of what Berlin trio Rodeo Drive might get up to on their forthcoming Morbid Beauty full-length, which is set to release this Friday. Fronted by bassist Hans Eiselt, who also plays guitar in heavy psych jammers Samsara Blues Experiment, Rodeo Drive are an altogether gruffer, more straightforward band. Eiselt‘s vocals, still melodic, are throaty and well suited to the rush of “All in Vain,” and while there are some psychedelic undertones, the sound is much more traditionally stoner rock, aimed for simpler execution and hitting the mark with what seems to be no trouble at all, guitarist Friedrich Stemmer and drummer Rene Schulze joining Eiselt in the steady push.

The video for the track is likewise down to earth — a few different cameras capture the band rocking out in a dimly lit room. Posters adorn the wall behind them, and at the start of the clip, somebody — presumably Eiselt — says the phrase, “psychedelic relic.” Maybe that was the original name of the song, or maybe it’s a sort of general assessment from the band on their style, but sure enough, “All in Vain” does hint at more ethereal sonic territory, and a cut like the seven-and-a-half-minute “Earth Dark Diseases,” which is up for streaming at Rodeo Drive‘s ReverbNation page, would seem to indicate that “All in Vain” is just the start of what the band might have to offer on Morbid Beauty.

Still, not a bad place to start. Rodeo Drive release Morbid Beauty this Friday at a gig at Berlin’s Jägerklause with Olympus Mons and Liquid Silk, should you happen to be in the area. If not, you can check out “All in Vain” below.

Enjoy:

Rodeo Drive, “All in Vain” official video

Rodeo Drive on Thee Facebooks

Rodeo Drive at ReverbNation

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Friday Full-Length: Colour Haze, Colour Haze

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 28th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

Colour Haze, Colour Haze (2004)

My understanding is that the version of Colour Haze‘s 2004 self-titled seventh full-length album is the 2007 reissue. I figured any Colour Haze‘s Colour Haze was the right choice. The difference is that the original CD edition was about 55 minutes long. Too much for a single LP, obviously, so the CD closer, “Flowers” is gone, as is “Mountain,” from side A. I’ll miss the latter more than the former, but as the album that’s come in a big way to define Colour Haze‘s sound as one of the most distinct in the European underground over the 10 years since its release, this clip — which was also the best quality available — wasn’t a loss either way. I don’t have this on vinyl. Maybe I should. I’d be lying if I said putting it on full-screen and watching the record spin with the cover propped up behind wasn’t a good sell.

It’s hard to pick a winner between Colour Haze and its 2006 follow-up, Tempel, also released through Elektrohasch. Usually I’ll abdicate the responsibility. I’ll say that I remember when I got the CD of the self-titled and put it on, it was one of those moments where you can feel your blood get warmer. Particularly for arriving so soon after 2003′s Los Sounds de Krauts, it was a different vibe than that 2CD, fuzzier, more assured, jammier. Again, I don’t really have a favorite from Colour Haze, but this one is as  essential as any you might want to put next to it. One interesting thing the vinyl seems to do is keep “Peace, Brothers and Sisters!” intact, timing-wise. A 22-minute B-side is nothing to scoff at, and every nuance leading to it is a joy. For “Love” alone, it’s one of the best heavy psych records ever made.

Enjoy.

Tonight is the Small Stone Records showcase at the Middle East in Boston, and I’ll be hitting that up. I didn’t anticipate having the energy to close out the week afterwards, so it seemed prudent to do so beforehand. Monday I’ll have a review of that showcase and a full-stream of the new Causa Sui live album, Live at Freak Valley, with an accompanying review. Probably not the smartest thing I ever did to book both of those on the same day, but hell, not like I have a job, right? If I spend my afternoon furiously typing alternate descriptors for “heavy,” well at least I wasn’t in bed with my head buried under pillows dwelling on what a spectacular failure my decade in the music industry was. Gotta stay busy!

Also next week, look for a full-album stream from Hotel Wrecking City Traders, whose new one is killer. I’m in the process of working out a premiere for Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus too, because I think that’s worth hearing for people who may not be familiar with the band — I also didn’t really appreciate what they were doing until I heard it for myself and sat with it a while — but I’m not sure if it’ll be next week or sometime thereafter. I’ll figure it out one way or another.

You might notice an awful lot of Kyuss and Black Sabbath (also Colour Haze, and Grails and a bunch of Small Stone stuff) on the radio stream. It’s the backup server. The main server was at my now-former office in Jersey, and this week I asked Slevin to run by and pick it up, which he was kind enough to do. It’s being brought north by my family, who are coming up tomorrow for a visit (“uh, hey guys, can you bring this computer and also a bunch of food?” — classy), and I’ll hope to have it running at some point over the weekend. Until then, Kyuss and Sabbath hardly seems like a downer.

Have a great and safe couple of days and I’ll catch you back here Monday for more wild adventures. Please check out the forum and radio stream.

The Obelisk Forum

The Obelisk Radio

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On Wax: Bushfire, Heal Thy Self

Posted in On Wax on March 20th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

There’s an undertone of burl that’s carried through the entirety of Bushfire‘s Dec. 2013 second long-player, Heal Thy Self, and that’s due in no small part to vocalist Bill Brown‘s low-in-the-mouth approach. He’s not exactly shooting for “whiskey-soaked Southern” or something like that, but his post-grunge style remains consistent throughout the nine tracks of the vinyl, which arrives in a sturdy gatefold with a quality, 180g platter, heavy stock dust jacket and foldout liner notes that further the visual theme from artist Ingo “Krimalkin” Lohse, the intricacy of whose work is all the more appreciable in the 12″ format. Heal Thy Self is a different experience on LP as opposed to CD or Bandcamp stream or whatever it might be, but however one approaches it, the Darmstadt, Germany, double-guitar five-piece offer songwriting coinciding with the dependable physical feel of the Heal Thy Self album. Their material is straightforward in a bruiser sense and asks few indulgences while staving off monotony with change-it-up cuts like the moody “Brother” on side B and the cowbell-infused boogie of “Tuff Luv,” which closes side A.

No shortage of doomer roots are on display — album opener “Failure” ends with whispers eerily reminiscent of those announcing the departure of “Children of the Grave” on Master of Reality – but Bushfire‘s trade is heavy, riff-driven rock and roll. If it had anything to do with getting high, I’d be tempted to call it stoner, but their approach is tighter than that designation seems to warrant these days, the two guitars of Marcus Bischoff and Miguel Pereira comfortable in a leadership role when they need to be and driving the grooves that Brown ably rides in his vocals, bassist Nick Kurz offering more to the personality of the whole than just tonal weight, though plenty of that as well, and drummer Tom Hoffmann punctuating the roll and suitably getting into some double-kick bass when “Glossolalia” moves in its back end to some surprisingly blackened screams for a bit of flourish that Bushfire don’t return to, but makes its point anyway and gives a different context to the from-the-gut shouting that caps the Down-style riffing of “Elephant,” which in turn leads to “Tuff Luv,” the verses there reminding more of The Atomic Bitchwax than anything so gruffly intentioned.

Side B has a somewhat different personality. Production makes most of side A consistent sound-wise despite the fact that Bushfire are leaning to one side or another within their aesthetic, but with four songs as opposed to five and the closing duo of “Hungry” and “Dream” checking in at just under seven minutes each, the vibe is bound to be somewhat distinct from the first half of Heal Thy Self. All things are relative, of course, but where “Failure” set the album into motion with a mounting swell of feedback and distortion, “Objector” opens side B with quiet guitar and a subdued, contemplative verse. It doesn’t last, and soon enough “Objector” is into some of Heal Thy Self‘s ballsiest swaggering, all starts-and-stops and “hey whoa yeah”-style shouting. Fair enough. “Brother,” also one of the longer songs, develops the ideas that “Objector” seems to hint at in its intro — though is plenty heavy besides — and with a slower pace sets out a hook that’s among the most resonant Bushfire have to offer, “Hungry” seeming to work in a similar vein until a build in the midsection into faster riffing provides fluid transition to a shuffle that recalls some of “Tuff Luv” from side A. It’s the stomp that wins out, topped with wah guitar as it is, and “Hungry” seems to drunk-stumble into “Dream.”

Honestly, after both “Brother” and “Hungry,” “Dream” comes across as something of an afterthought. There isn’t much on offer that the prior 41 minutes haven’t shown Bushfire already capably displaying, but the opening crashes give some sense of arrival anyway, and the finale moves at a decent clip, so it’s not likely to offend either if you’ve made it this far into the record. A vague spoken sample arrives in the second half of the song over the last guitar solo, and after “Dream” stomps to its finish, there are some piano noises and what sounds like a bird of some sort, no doubt of some significance to whatever it was the dream itself may have been about. I do not know how many copies of Heal Thy Self the band pressed — mine’s hand-numbered as #190 on side B, so at least that many — but it’s a substantial effort in both sound and physical construction for a DIY band to undertake, and to Bushfire‘s credit, they pull it off front to back, whether it’s the coherence of their style and production or the atmosphere that the detailed lines of the gatefold convey. They’ve been around for a decade and still sound like they’re growing, but Heal Thy Self has plenty to offer a vinyl hound with a craving for thick grooves.

Bushfire, Heal Thy Self (2013)

Bushfire’s webstore

Bushfire on Thee Facebooks

Bushfire on Bandcamp

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Beehoover UK Tour Starts this Friday

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 18th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

I’m not sure I can match Exile on Mainstream head Andreas Kohl‘s description of what German avant noise rockers Beehoover do — in fact, I’m sure I can’t — so it’s probably best I leave it to him. Beehoover, who released their fourth album, The Devil and His Footmen (discussed here), on Kohl‘s label last fall, will begin a run of shows in the UK this weekend, playing alongside a host of that country’s up and coming heavy luminaries, including Undersmile, BongCauldron, Monolith Cult, Lords of Bastard and others.

It’s a heavy bunch of nights, and with Kohl‘s evident passion, the PR wire makes it something of an easy sell:

The gnarly riff-wrenching stoner rock duo Beehoover are back in a big way – whilst the world regains composure following the clout delivered on their recently released, and fourth full-length album The Devil And His Footmen (which you can stream in full here), the German drum and bass commanders have been preparing for their UK tour. Across nine days, Beehoover will travel far and wide, showcasing their hybrid, barking sludge – quite unlike anything you will have experienced before.

Who better to describe Beehoover’s musical creations than their label manager, Andreas Kohl? – “One of my most loved descriptions in music history for a tonal impact is Southern Lord’s comparison for Warhorse’s sound with the feeling of being beaten with a wet mattress. For Beehoover I could pack a gargantuan pile of descriptions on the table, ultimately I would describe my listening experience like being wrapped in plastic foil, unable to move but struck in awe facing an enormous T34, while a Stalin organ is shooting roses across the tundra, explosives that draw a dreamy coloured fireworks on the night sky.”

Kohl continues, “In the crowd, what you see is hair, just hair behind the drums and contrails from swirling drumsticks. Centred is one barefoot Urviech covering the room with noises you can’t escape from, breathing, drinking, eating and farting riffs in a quantity and variety that 15 bands could live and ride off for the next one hundred years. Rhythms, riffs, beats, songs, sounds – so emotional, glowing in urgency, blasting on your senses so that you get an overdose of endorphins just from watching this monstrous mother of all concerts, exploding like an earthquake that rips continents apart. Yes, this is what it sounds like: I love this band. Every single time I see them. I pity you if you’ve never had the chance – make your life complete and take the chance now. If there’s one band you’ve really got to see EVER – it’s these guys!”

TOUR DATES:
Fri 21 March 2014 London – Black Heart (Ghoud, Henry Blacker & Bloody Mammals)
Sat 22 March 2014 Cardiff – Moon Club (Thorun, We Are Romans and Haast’s Eagled)
Sun 23 March 2014 Bristol – Mothers Ruin
Mon 24 March 2014 Plymouth – Tiki Bar (Death Parish and Monolithian)
Tue 25 March 2014 Oxford – The Wheatsheaf (Undersmile and Caravan Of Whores)
Wed 26 March 2014 Salford – The Eagle Inn (Mask Of Bees and The Senton Bombs)
Thu 27 March 2014 Edinburgh – Banshee Labyrinth (Lords Of Bastard and [[ Wall ]])
Fri 28 March 2014 Glasgow – 13th Note (Lords Of Bastard and Skeleton Gong)
Sat 29 March 2014 Birmingham – Scruffy’s (Burden Of The Noose, Monolith Cult, Goat Leaf, Grey Widow, Wolfs Head, Bong Cauldron and Sealclubber)

Beehoover’s latest album, The Devil and His Footmen, is a swirl of raw, sultry tones and rumbling octaves that strike chords with braggadocio 70’s hard rock as much as it does the thunderous rumble of Black Cobra and the jutting angles of Unsane. Beehoover are at their most rocking here, tangling the long hair of the headbangers with all the genres of beard in one matted toupee of oddball rhythms and histrionic vocals. Beehoover buzz with eccentric electric – come along, grit your teeth and enjoy the sting.

https://www.facebook.com/beehoovermusic/
http://www.beehoover.com/
http://www.mainstreamrecords.de/

Beehoover, The Devil and His Footmen (2013)

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