Posted in Whathaveyou on January 8th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
Just in case you thought Roadburn 2015 might be done, the fest has gone and added a fifth stage. I never actually got around to making the list that would’ve expressed the sentiment, but seeing Netherlands-native droners Mühr at Cul de Sac was one of the high points of my entire 2014 in terms of live shows. It’s a separate club from 013, but basically right across the street in Weirdo Canyon, still very much within the fest’s purview. I can’t imagine it will remain standing after Goatwhore play, but it was nice while it lasted.
Other lineup additions for Roadburn 2015 today from Mount Salem, Downfall of Gaia, Fistula, Minsk and more. By way of a cheap plug, if you click the links to the info for Fistula and Minsk, I wrote those. Nonetheless, it all came down the PR wire like such:
New additions and fifth stage confirmed for Roadburn Festival 2015
Roadburn Festival is pleased to kick off the new year with a handful of new confirmations, plus the addition of a fifth stage. Tickets for the 20th edition of the festival are on sale now.
Minsk, Mount Salem and Worm Ouroboros have been added to the line up at the 013 for Thursday April 9. Having previously performed at the 2009 edition of the festival, Minsk return to Roadburn, bringing their trademark atmospheric, meditative ambience, offset by raging thrust. Look out for plenty of canyon-sized riffs, trippy sounding keyboards and enchanting vocals when Mount Salem conjur a crushing windstorm to blow through Roadburn, whilst Worm Ouroboros will be spinning their diaphanous webs of the most delicate chamber doom.
For more information on these bands please clickHEREfor Minsk,HEREfor Mount Salem, andHEREfor Worm Ouroboros.
New Orleans heavyweights, Goatwhore lead the charge, followed by Germany’s Downfall of Gaia, noise-hardcore trio Cortez, and a dual-pronged sludge attack from both Fister, and Moloch as the first bands announced for the intimate Cul de Sac venue. As with the 2014 edition, Roadburn’s fifth stage will be at Cul de Sac – small music café located across from the 013 venue at 48 Heuvel, which is the street lined with bars and restaurants (also affectionately known as “Weirdo Canyon”). Four bands will perform at Cul de Sac on each day of the festival, Thursday – Sunday. Entry to these shows is sure to be in high demand, so attendees are advised to arrive early to secure access.
Fister, Cortez, and Moloch will perform on Thursday April 9. For more information please clickHERE.
For information on Goatwhore clickHERE, and Downfall of Gaia clickHERE, both will perform on Friday April 10.
With regret, we have to announce that Lord Mantis will no longer be performing at Roadburn 2015. Having witnessed their incredible performance at the 2011 festival, we at Roadburn HQ were all really excited to have them perform at our 20th edition this coming April. Sadly, the band are unable to make it over to Europe due to personal reasons; as a result their performance at Roadburn and any shows around that will be cancelled. The vacant slot on the line up will be taken by Ohio sludge titans, Fistula who will bring their perfect blend of blasphemy and assaulting volume to Het Patronaat on Saturday April 11. For more information on Fistula, please clickHERE.
In December, day tickets were released on sale alongside the remaining weekend and Afterburner only tickets. To view ticketing options for Roadburn Festival clickHERE.
Posted in Reviews on December 3rd, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
Here’s a quick metaphor for how I feel about the city of Philadelphia. I was on my way down to Philly from my office, wanting to get to Union Transfer early to see High on Fire, Goatwhore, Primate and Lo-Pan. And I’m doing my usual not-there-yet stress thing. I’d never been to Union Transfer before, so what if there’s no parking anywhere, what if I can’t find it, what if I drive off the edge of a cliff — all that ultra-reasonable anxiety that sometimes is enough to keep me at home but generally accompanies me one way or another everywhere I go.
Parking space right outside the venue. Maybe 50 feet from the door. Street parking, free because it was after 6:30PM. Once more, Philly, your hospitality astonishes.
It was chilly waiting for the door to open, but I’d listened to enough NPR en route and the cold did me some good. My understanding is UnionTransfer is a relatively recent advent, show-wise, and if it was actually a train station at one point, it makes a decent club. The room was sizable and the stage can be moved either forward or back to allow for more space on the floor. It was pretty far up. Apparently advance sales for the Thursday night show weren’t great, so the balcony was also closed, which was a bummer because that’s probably where I’d have been otherwise.
I grabbed a beer early (it would be my only one of the night) and waited about an hour for Lo-Pan to go on, sitting at one of the side tables killing time to the best of my ability. Gradually I made my way toward the floor and then up front. Though the room wasn’t nearly as full as it would be later, there were already a bunch of people there and I figured better safe than taking pictures of the back of some dude’s head.
Of the four bands on the bill, I really only had more than nominal interest in two: Lo-Pan and High on Fire, the bookends on the bill. That said, I hardly suffered through either Primate or Goatwhore‘s sets. It went down like so:
I was especially looking forward to seeing Lo-Pan on this tour, it being the hardworking Columbus, Ohio, natives’ biggest yet. They lined up toward the front of the stage, all in a row, from bassist Scott Thompson on down through drummer Jesse Bartz, vocalist Jeff Martin and guitarist Brian Fristoe. Martin, who’s usually in the back while Bartz is out front — at least that’s how it’s been at every Lo-Pan show I’ve seen and I don’t mind saying I’ve seen a few at this point — was up there with everyone else and held his position well, projecting his powerful, soulful voice upward into the mic in front of him. Pipes for days. They played “Colossus” and “Eastern Seas,” the two new songs they had included in their set at the Small Stone Records showcase in Boston at the start of the month (review here), and though the one right after the other threw me for a bit, the driving “Chichen Itza” from Salvadorwas a highlight and “Dragline” from 2009’s Sasquanautwas something of a surprise. They intended to close with it but were granted some extra time and made the most of it with one more song. It wasn’t the most comfortable I’ve ever seen them, but as the openers, I imagine they’ve made a positive first impression on a lot of heads throughout this tour. They were more than worth showing up early for, and I hope they continue to tour at this level, because they’ve proven that they’re more than ready to carry the flag for heavy rock to a wider audience that won’t know what hit it.
Seems like the appeal of Atlanta-based grinders Primate was rooted in the fact that the band features Brutal Truth vocalist Kevin Sharp and Mastodon guitarist Bill Kelliher in the lineup. For a more Philly-specific angle, second guitarist Mike Brennan once slung for Philly dirt thrashers Javelina. Whatever the status of that band, his contributions to Primate were in line with the band’s general modus: Play fast, be angry. The barefoot Sharp has nothing to prove as a frontman, and his vocals remained consistently intense throughout the tightly-delivered set. Likewise, Kelliher‘s resume doesn’t exactly need padding at this point either. He made playing fast look like playing slow, hardly breaking a sweat as they went on. A straight-up hardcore punk persisted, and Primate only confirmed their intent with a cover of Black Flag‘s “Rise Above,” which the young dude standing next to me went — pun most definitely intended — apeshit for. He was not alone by any means. Theirs was a different kind of heavy from what I’m used to seeing, but hell man, I’ve done my time with extremity of sound and I can get down with that if need be. Their stuff was pummeling and precise in kind, and when that’s the case, even if it’s not what I’m interested in hearing on a given night, I have a hard time not appreciating it on its own level.
I’d have to go back and check the archives to be sure, but I think Goatwhore might be the fastest band I’ve ever taken pictures of. Maybe that’s not saying much, considering the context, but still, it was a new experience for me. It’s been more than half a decade since I even really vaguely paid attention to what they had going on, but it didn’t seem at Union Transfer that I’d missed all that much. Frontman Ben Falgoust still had his strangely effective hand gestures and every time I looked at guitarist Sammy Duet, I still just thought to myself, “Wow, he’s the dude from Acid Bath.” So it went. They were pro, though, and made the fine line between metal and capital-h Heavy seem much thicker than it has at other times. Duet spit on the stage at one point and I caught some ricochet, but other than that, it wasn’t unpleasant in the slightest. Despite all the time that’s passed since I heard one of their records, I recognized the breakdown in “Alchemy of the Black Sun Cult,” and that was as much landmark as I really needed. The crowd I guess wasn’t as into it as Falgoust was hoping for, since at one point he reminded from the stage that, “It’s cool to like metal again.” I didn’t know it was ever cool to like metal. Someone better tell Shakira to get on that shit, lest she lose her pop relevance. Either way, when they were done, they broke down their own gear, and for a band who’ve been around as long as they have and toured as much as they have, I found that admirable.
High on Fire
Near as I can tell from the small sample I’ve seen, here’s the difference between watching Matt Pike sober now and Matt Pike not at all sober before: Earlier in his career, he came out on stage like he was swinging a double-sided battle axe and conquered the stage, claiming the heads of any and all who opposed him as though anyone would be foolish enough to attempt such a thing. He was a shirtless madman. That’s enjoyable but hardly sustainable for a career. Now when Matt Pike comes out on stage, it’s not even a question whose stage it is. The battle axe need not apply. He just owns it. That’s not to say High on Fire were in any way lacking their trademark sonic fury, just that it had direction, knew where it was headed and the band — Pike, bassist Jeff Matz and drummer Des Kensell — were smarter with the tools of their trade. They fucking killed. Most of the set came from this year’s De Vermiis Mysteriis (review here), set opener “Serums of Laio” even more riotous on stage than it is starting off the record. “Last” and especially “10,000 Years” from the recently-reissued The Art of Self-Defense were highlights, and the moments of slower groove on “DII” or “Madness of an Architect” came as welcome changes of pace from the ripping likes of “Spiritual Rites,” “Fury Whip” or “Devilution.” High on Fire have a catalog of five strong albums to draw from — “Speedwolf” represented 2002’s Surrounded by Thieves — but it was the title-track to 2010’s Snakes for the Divinethat did the closing duties, and with its grandiose lead work, it seemed suited to the task. By then I’d long since moved to the back of Union Transfer to extricate myself from the violence up front, but wherever you were, there was no getting away from the fact that High on Fire have pushed themselves forward and that watching them now, there’s no doubt who the headliners are. Pike was more subdued in his stage persona, as one would have to expect, but he still played to the crowd, as did Matz, and Kensell was so buried in his kit you could only really see the top of his head, so if High on Fire have a rock star aura about them, it’s certainly one cast in their own image. However derailed they may have seemed or whatever hit their momentum may have taken earlier this year by their ducking out on the commercial exposure Mayhem fest would’ve brought, they’re back rolling hard and they seem clear-headed and ready for whatever could be coming their way. The stage looked small around them.
I’d taken Friday off from work, but a drive to Boston awaited in the morning and I had a two-hour trip home to my humble river valley, so I was out of there pretty quick once the house lights came on. Of course, it was Philly, so I had no trouble getting to where I was going, hit no traffic and made it home in record time. God damn I love that city.
Posted in Whathaveyou on November 9th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
…Because really, if you’re going to start the biggest tour of your career to date, you don’t want to do it on a Monday. Lo-Pan head out beginning Nov. 13, this coming Tuesday, to meet up with High on Fire and Goatwhore in Austin. From there, the three bands and periodically others like Mastodon/Brutal Truth-offshoot Primate and C.O.C. – whose Eye for an Eye reissue came out this week — will storm the countryside, and as if the tour wasn’t long enough, Lo-Pan have some off-dates booked as well.
If you have even a passing interest in American heavy rock, you probably don’t need me to tell you how crucial Lo-Pan is at this point. Just go to the show and make sure you get there early.
This from the PR wire:
LO-PAN: Ohio Road Burners To Kick Off North American Tour With High On Fire
Ohio road burners, LO-PAN, are readying for their next round of live assaults supporting heavy metal juggernauts High On Fire. The full North American takeover will commence on November 15 in Austin, Texas and is slated to run through December 22 in San Francisco, California. Additional support will come from Goatwhore as well as special guests Primate (featuring Mastodon’s Bill Kelliher and Kevin Sharp of Brutal Truth) and Corrosion of Conformity on select dates. Additionally, LO-PAN will be picking up a few off dates in surrounding cities. Check the full itinerary below.
Don’t miss LO-PAN on their final dates of 2012!
LO-PAN Tour Dates 2012: 11/13/2012 Buccaneer – Memphis, TN 11/14/2012 Downtown Music – Little Rock, AR 11/15/2012 Emo’s – Austin, TX w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/16/2012 Korova – San Antonio, TX w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/17/2012 Tree’s – Dallas, TX w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/18/2012 Happy Hippie – Lake Charles, LA w/ Large Marge 11/19/2012 One Eyed Jacks – New Orleans, LA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/20/2012 Vinyl Music Hall – Pensacola, FL w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/21/2012 Jinx – Savannah, GA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 11/23/2012 Rock & Roll Hotel – Washington, DC w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/24/2012 Sinclair – Boston, MA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/25/2012 The Bug Jar – Rochester, NY w/ Primate 11/26/2012 Opera House – Toronto, ON w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/27/2012 La Tulipe – Montreal, QC w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/28/2012 Port Street Music Hall – Portland, MA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/29/2012 Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 11/30/2012 Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 12/01/2012 Music Hall of Williamsburg – Brooklyn, NY w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, Primate 12/03/2012 Mohawk – Buffalo, NY w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/04/2012 Grog Shop – Cleveland, OH w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/05/2012 Aces of Cups – Columbus, OH w/ High Ow/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/06/2012 Firebird – St. Louis, MO w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/07/2012 Double Door – Chicago, IL w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/08/2012 Turf Club – Minneapolis, MN w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/09/2012 High Noon – Madison, WI w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/10/2012 The Riot Room – Kansas City, MO w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/11/2012 Bluebird – Denver, CO w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/12/2012 Burt’s Tiki Lounge – Salt Lake City, UT 12/13/2012 Nerolux – Boise, ID w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/14/2012 Neumos – Seattle, WA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/15/2012 Dante’s – Portland, OR w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/16/2012 The Venue – Vancouver, BC w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore 12/18/2012 The Catalyst – Santa Cruz, CA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, C.O.C. 12/19/2012 Brick By Brick – San Diego, CA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, C.O.C. 12/20/2012 Slidebar – Fullerton, CA Slidebar w/ Goatwhore 12/21/2012 Constellation Room – Santa Ana, CA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore, C.O.C. 12/22/2012 Slim’s – San Francisco, CA w/ High On Fire, Goatwhore