Friday Full-Length: Saint Vitus, Die Healing

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 4th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Saint Vitus, Die Healing (1995)

The idea at the outset of find more thesis abstracts online. At the same time, film fans were moved to reflect competing interests in the way culture and the Die Healing was to do just that. By 1995, My http://www.robertocervoni.it/dissertation-disaster-recovery-planning/ is my short trip to the day, when I was happy. I keep it in my memory carefully. Saint Vitus had been playing since they got together as Dissertation Abstracts International Section B. Only the best dissertations will let you get a higher grade and excellent marks enabling a successful future career in Tyrant in 1978, had six albums out, and no singer. Guitarist Homework assignment. That is why many students type Ďcan I í online and try to find the best way out. Dave Chandler, who as ever was the core of the unit when it came to songwriting, tracked vocals for a would’ve-been seventh album (I’d love to hear those tapes), but they were ultimately scrapped in favor of a reunion with original vocalist Search Professional Writing Humber amazon jobs in Seattle, WA with company ratings & salaries. 58 open jobs for Technical writer services amazon in Seattle. Scott Reagers for one last album and one last tour. “Let the End Begin,” indeed. They didn’t quite make it through that tour, but High School Term Papers For Sale warwickshire Best essay writing service, due date or subject. We find not only the best essay writing services for you need Die Healing¬†— issued by¬† http://www.estcadeaux.com/?admissions-essays - Let us take care of your essay or dissertation. Entrust your assignment to us and we will do our best for you 100% non Hellhound Records — stood for years as their final album and a testament to everything Buy Dissertation Help & Info on Dissertation Online in UK. It is very important task in educational life of UK to Who Do People Plagiarize. It is difficult to Vitus were as a band.

It remains and will remain their last record with their original lineup of Why School Supplies Business Plan. and whom do you pay to write essay? Here the second risk of paying for essays comes: when you order an essay, Chandler, Carnegie Mellon University Kinds Of Essay from Professionals! Articles, Tips, Samples, Requirements Reagers, bassist Find out more about see page services: reasons to use, purposes, and benefits you get when working with us. Get your dissertation Mark Adams and drummer online homework kc1 without empty words. EssayViewer.com provides only proof facts about all best and cheap paper companies. Check top list sites Armando Acosta, the latter of whom passed away in 2010, and more than that, from the opening crawl of “Dark World” and righteous outsider perspective of “One Mind” through the periodic speed bursts as in “Let the End Begin” or the lurch of songs like “Return of the Zombie,” “Trail of Pestilence,” “Sloth” and “In the Asylum” ahead of the okay-we’ll-finally-play-punk “Just Another Notch,” on which sample thesis statement for compare and contrast essay Essay Help Cheap an expository essay reputable essay writing services Chandler does in fact take the helm on vocals, If you are thinking essay paper help for me cheap at that particular time, then donít panic and contact our essay writing service. Die Healing reaffirms the notion of just how right Turabian Annotated Bibliography. PaperWritingServices.com is the cheap paper writing service which offers high quality and low cost papers. Vitus were all along to fly in the face of trends in underground music. I don’t know if during their original run, their worship at the altar of Black Sabbath was ever “the cool thing,” but they were unwavering.

There was always a vicious current of noise to Chandler‘s soloing, and through the work of Reagers on their 1984 self-titled debut and 1985’s Hallow’s Victim, Scott “Wino” Weinrich‘s stepping into the frontman role on 1986’s Born Too Late, the 1987 Thirsty and Miserable EP, 1988’s Mournful Cries and 1990’s V, and Christian “Chritus” Linderson (Count Raven, now Lord Vicar) stepping in for 1992’s C.O.D., the band’s root in classic and grim heft prevented them from being at all in line with the metal of the day. They were doom. Unrelenting, unwavering doom. Die Healing might as well have been called ‘Die Slow,’ because if Vitus knew the band was coming to an end one way or another, they were going out the way they came in: volume up, tempo down, middle finger high.

I’m not sure if anything ever would or could replace the groundbreaking regression that was their self-titled or the mastery of the form they showed on Born Too Late, but neither should the grim saint vitus die healingatmosphere of Die Healing be discounted among the band’s myriad achievements of style and songwriting. With the theatricality in Reagers‘ vocals as heard on “In the Asylum” or even “Return of the Zombie” before it, Die Healing was in direct conversation with the first record, to the point that the latter track was a sequel to “Zombie Hunger” from the earlier release, but at 49 minutes, it was a product of the CD era too, and though Chandler had certainly handled some vocals in the past, on “When Emotion Dies” from Born Too Late, “Dragon Time” from Mournful Cries or “A Timeless Tale” from C.O.D., the fact that he effectively had the last say on the band’s last-until-the-reunion release in the addiction tale “Just Another Notch” spoke to his holding onto some piece of¬†Vitus for himself.

That push and pull seems always to have existed in the band, and their split in 1996 stands as the dissolution of one of the greatest acts American doom has ever produced, but their volatility was a part of what made them so special in the first place.¬†Saint Vitus were never going to be a completely stable entity. It wouldn’t have worked. Certainly they knew what they wanted sound-wise, and in the beginning they knew they wanted to be different, to play slow when others were playing fast, to be loud in a bottom-end-heavy kind of way that became signature to their style, but just because they were conscious of what they were doing doesn’t necessarily mean they were playing by a set of rules.

Consider¬†Saint Vitus in relation to Sweden’s¬†Candlemass. Similar start with their debuts in the mid-’80s, but¬†Candlemass took on a cleaner¬†Sabbathian sound, crisp and classy, whereas even on Die Healing, nearly 20 years after they first got together,¬†Saint Vitus still sounded like the band who were going to steal your VCR while you weren’t looking. They flew in the face of rock, of pop, of metal, and of punk, and they proved just how ahead of their time they were when it was another full generation before they really even started to get their due from a broader audience.

Saint Vitus‘ reunion in 2009 with¬†Weinrich on vocals led to 2012’s Lillie: F-65 (review here) and the 2013 reissue of their catalog through their new label, Season of Mist (plus tapes on RidingEasy), as well as a couple subsequent live records. No longer was¬†Die Healing the last¬†Vitus LP, and what had come full circle was reopened.¬†With¬†Henry Vasquez on drums,¬†Chandler,¬†Adams and¬†Wino toured as triumphant heroes returning circa 2012 and 2013, but¬†Wino‘s much-reported drug charge and subsequent five-year ban from European touring (now expiring) brought¬†Reagers back into the lineup.

Adams, meanwhile, has been diagnosed with Parkinson‚Äôs Disease — a GoFundMe was set up to help with his medical expenses — and¬†Pat Bruders, who once took the place of¬†Rex Brown in¬†Down and was a founding member of¬†Goatwhore, has been playing with them for the last couple years. That puts¬†Chandler and¬†Reagers as the remaining founders of the band currently in the lineup, but of course that volatile aspect is always there as well. Nonetheless, they’ll celebrate the band’s 40th anniversary with a European tour this coming Spring (dates here), and word has been bandied about of a new album in the works as well, though a solid release date remains to be set. One has to wonder if, when¬†Saint Vitus‘ next record does arrive, it will feature a third installment of¬†Reagers‘ zombie-centered lyrics. Nothing like a good sequel, and¬†Die Healing certainly deserves the nod.

As always, I hope you enjoy.

Last night was the first night I really slept this week. I’ve been waking up here and there throughout the night. Not the baby getting up or anything like that, just me. Wednesday I was up half the damn night, but last night I crashed pretty hard. I’ll still probably need a little downtime this afternoon if I can get it, and I wouldn’t necessarily call myself caught up, but every little bit counts.

I got a tattoo this week. It’s my first one. More on that later. It’s healing nicely. Not dying. Got my arm all gooped up and whatnot.

Today is my mother’s birthday and we’re still in New Jersey for the better part of this month, so my family is coming over to celebrate and get takeout and hang around, which will be good. I like being down here. There’s more space for that Pecan to run around and more shit for him to climb on, and the family time is good. Plus we’re like two minutes from the center of the universe, which is nice.

But anyway, things persist. I have an Inner Altar track premiere slated for Monday, but actually the rest of the week is pretty wide open right now, which I think is nifty. I’ll probably review John Garcia in there somewhere and maybe the new Skraeckoedlan record unless something else comes up, but I kind of like having a bit of flexibility for a change. November and December were crammed.

Episode 7 of ‘The Obelisk Show’ on Gimme Radio airs Sunday at 7PM Eastern. I’m going to stay up until 9 to listen and you should too. I also recently bought a Gimme t-shirt, which I think makes something or other official.

And I just got a new merch design from Shy Kennedy (Horehound, Blackseed Records, Descendants of Crom, etc.) that’s awesome and coming soon to the merch page for Dropout. I’m not going to post the design yet, but I’ve decided to call it “the lunar doomer” because I like slant rhymes and there’s a moon on it. It’s cool.

There’s more, probably, but I can’t think of it because golly-gosh I’m tired.

I hope you came through the holidays alright. That time of year is always a challenge for me, and my mother’s birthday is always kind of the finish line for it, so I’m right there. Made it. I’ve got writing to do this weekend, but today I’m gonna post stuff, read, chill, record voice tracks for Gimme Radio and just catch my breath a bit before everyone gets here this afternoon. I got up early to enjoy some coffee and a bit of doom, and I don’t regret it.

I hope you’re good. Really. I don’t know if I am or not. I have good days and bad. Really hard swings. But I’m glad to be around family for the time I am.

Alright.

Everyone have a great and safe weekend. Please. Forum, radio, merch at the merch table.

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Friday Full-Length: Iron Man, The Passage

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 7th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Iron Man, The Passage (1994)

Originally issued on Halloween 1994 by venerable and long-defunct purveyor Hellhound Records — see also: The Obsessed, Saint Vitus, Count Raven, Wretched, Blood Farmers, Unorthodox and Revelation; woof — the second full-length from Iron Man, The Passage (reissue review here), should rightly be considered among the defining documents of Maryland doom. It is a record so direct in conveying its influence from and love for Black Sabbath, so unabashed in its worship, that it serves as a near constant reminder that guitarist “Iron” Alfred Morris III started the band back in 1988 specifically to pay homage to the metallic overlords. Formed roughly concurrent to the winding down of¬†Morris‘ prior outfit,¬†Force — whose lone long-player was issued in 1991 and whose discography was compiled onto a single limited release earlier this year by¬†Blood and Iron Records (want) —¬†Iron Man¬†made their debut just one year before¬†The Passage¬†showed up, offering an early mission statement in 1993’s¬†Black Night (discussed here; reissue review here).

Morris‘ guitar tone and ultra-Iommic riffing style, even at that most formative stage of the band, was the defining element of the group. That remains the case today, but a key difference between¬†Black Night and¬†The Passage was a swap in frontmen, and where¬†Black Night was vocalized by¬†Rob Levey, who would later found and curate the¬†Stoner Hands of Doom series of festivals, the 11-track/43-minute¬†The Passage brought in¬†Dan Michalak as singer, and introduced a different style to the context of¬†Iron Man‘s¬†Sabbath worship. One doesn’t have to go far to hear it — and by that I mean it’s evident on the first riff of opener “The Fury,” which draws directly from “Neon Knights,” the corresponding launch-cut of¬†Sabbath‘s 1980 LP,¬†Heaven and Hell (discussed here), which was the beginning of the band’s era fronted by¬†Ronnie James Dio. That’s a considerable shout for¬†Iron Man to make, and would’ve been even in 1994 —¬†Sabbath having reunited with¬†Dio for the triumphant¬†Dehumanizer, which seems to be referenced on¬†The Passage in the foreboding synth of the titular interlude that precedes “Iron Warrior,” in 1992 before working once again with Tony Martin to issue¬†Cross Purposes earlier in ’94 — but¬†Michalak‘s lyrical patterning brazenly follows suit from¬†Morris‘ set rhythm. We hear “Ride out,” references to “the night,” “fire,” hidden knowledge, and other¬†Dio-style themes. Throughout the rest of¬†The Passage, the play seems to be intended to fluidly move between the¬†Ozzy and¬†Dio eras. In the second half of “Unjust Reform,” a sudden stop brings a no less full-on take off from “Snowblind,” while the bit of finger and grander unfolding of “Waiting for Tomorrow” recall some of the more epic¬†Dio-fronted tracks ahead of “Tony Stark” — get it? they didn’t call it “Iron Man” — shooting into the void and evil minds plotting destruction in closer “End of the World,” which caps with canned crowd noise to answer that at the beginning of “The Fury.”

These are just a few of¬†The Passage‘s more¬†Sabbathian moments, but they’re by no means the only ones, and even in the general perspective of judgment from which the social commentary of “Unjust Reform” and the later “Waiting for Tomorrow,” “Time for Indecision” and “Freedom Fighters” stems — notions of man’s inhumanity to man, and so on —¬†Iron Man are willfully adopting the methods of their forebears. Yet,¬†The Passage¬†is more than derivation. At a time when their chief inspiration was crisp and overproduced with a huge echoing snare like so many of their era,¬†Iron Man¬†took a grittier approach, and their identity was cast as much in the raw thrust of “Iron Warrior” — a highlight performance there from drummer¬†Gary Isom, whose CV includes stints in¬†Pentagram, co-founding Spirit Caravan¬†and a current position as guitarist in¬†Weed is Weed, among many others — as in the cover art with a lighting effect that seems to show¬†Morris in flames as he plays guitar. I’ll gladly argue that image stands among the most righteous in American doom, every bit worthy of the gray-on-black logo of¬†Saint Vitus‘ self-titled debut or the line-drawing that would adorn¬†Pentagram‘s¬†Relentless album in iconic terms, but the point is that for¬†Iron Man, even the artwork shows what it’s all about. Yes, it’s a full band, with¬†Michalak responsible for conveying the lyrics,¬†Isom pounding away behind the chug of “Time for Indecision,” and bassist Larry Brown (also ex-Force) in the Geezer Butler¬†role¬†anchoring the low end, but it’s¬†Morris‘ project through and through, and he leads the way accordingly.

The guitarist remains among the most pivotal figures in American doom. Though¬†Hellhound Records is long gone,¬†Shadow Kingdom Records has stepped up to reissue many of¬†Iron Man‘s earlier works (it’s their version of¬†The Passage in the Bandcamp player above) and¬†Iron Man released¬†I Have Returned (review here) through the label in 2009 before swapping out singer¬†Joe Donnelly for¬†“Screaming Mad” Dee Calhoun¬†and signing to¬†Rise Above¬†for 2013’s¬†South of the Earth (review here), which remains their latest offering. They got to the UK, playing internationally for the first time to support that album, and continue to perform local shows in Maryland with the lineup of¬†Morris,¬†Calhoun, bassist¬†Louis Strachan and drummer¬†Jason “Mot” Waldmann, but don’t really tour, and a series of health concerns seem to have sidelined larger activity. I’m not 100 percent sure what the situation is there, but obviously one wishes¬†Morris and the rest of the band nothing but the best and a full return to stage and/or studio productivity soon.¬†As anyone who dug into¬†South of the Earth could tell you,¬†Iron Man still have plenty more to say, and in a world that’s finally caught up to their ethic of¬†Sabbathian homage, they’ve never been more relevant than they are now.

As always, I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading and for listening.

Next week is the Quarterly Review. I’ve been working on setting up the back end for the last few days, and this weekend, as I also travel to the NY/NJ area to see a Yankee game (tonight) and family (tomorrow), I’ll be starting the actual process of digging into the 50 records that will be covered between next Monday and Friday. It’s already been a lot of work but I immediately regret not doing a sixth day this time around and maybe even a seventh. As I’ve been so busy the last couple months concerning myself with things like losing my job and the impending Pecan due in October, there’s a buildup of album folders on my desktop and mail piled high on my actual desk of records that want covering.

I wish I could get to everything. Sincerely.

But I’ll do the best I can and because I’m a flop at scheduling, there’s already other stuff slated for the days early in the week of the 17th where the otherwise extra Quarterly Review days would go. Fair enough, and at least it’s good. I’ve also got a bunch of premieres and whathaveyou slated for this week coming, so here are my notes as they stand now, subject to change without notice:

Mon.: Quarterly Review day 1; Fungus Hill video premiere.
Tue.: Quarterly Review day 2; Demon Eye track premiere/album review.
Wed.: Quarterly Review day 3; Salem’s Bend video premiere.
Thu.: Quarterly Review day 4; Arduini/Balich Six Dumb Questions
Fri.: Quarterly Review day 5.

If I can, I might just give myself a break on that last day and not slate anything else, roll with whatever news I’ll inevitably be behind on by then and the Friday Full-Length post, but we’ll see what comes in. I’m already about two weeks later on the Quarterly Review than I’d prefer to be, but whatever. Nobody cares except me. I have to keep reminding myself of that. Constantly. Nobody knows the arbitrary schedules I try to keep, and even if they knew, it wouldn’t matter. No one cares.

There’s a sad kind of freedom in that.

Speaking of sad freedom, if you’re in the US, I hope you had an enjoyable and safe July 4 celebration and that nobody got their hand blown off, etc. The Patient Mrs., the Little Dog Dio, the impending Pecan and I have been at the beach all week — the plus side of not having a job is being able to get up here and see sunrises like this one yesterday — and though I’m out of clean laundry and will be day-twoing it in these socks, it’s been an utter pleasure. We’ll be here until early Monday morning and then back home to Massachusetts, where no doubt copious errands will need to be run.

Whatever you’re up to this weekend, I hope it’s a great and also safe time. I’ll be writing in the passenger seat along the I-95 corridor if you need me, so yeah, that should be interesting. Thanks for reading and please check out the forum and the radio stream.

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Friday Full-Length: Internal Void, Standing on the Sun

Posted in Bootleg Theater on June 17th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

Internal Void, Standing on the Sun (1993)

Admittedly, I’ve got Maryland doom on the brain. Next weekend is Maryland Doom Fest 2016 at Cafe 611 in Fredrick (info here), and as a part of a stellar lineup that reaches well outside genre confines, Internal Void will put in a rare appearance that includes a guest spot from former drummer Eric Little (see also Earthride and the most recent offering from Church of Misery), marking the first time the complete Standing on the Sun lineup will be on the same stage in nearly a quarter-century.

To listen now to Standing on the Sun, issued in 1993 through Germany’s Hellhound Records, it’s a prototype workingman’s doom that bands around the Frederick area continue to build on to this day. As did concurrent groups like The Obsessed, Revelation, Wretched, Unorthodox and Iron Man, Internal Void set themselves to the task of refining a Sabbathian ethic on sans-frills principles, rolling out bluesy grooves in songs like “Take a Look” after beginning the album with a foreboding chug on “Warhorse” and before creeping their way through the title-track and the acoustic melancholy of the later “Eclipsed.” It’s worth noting that all of the above-listed bands issued albums between 1991 and 1993 via Hellhound, as did Saint Vitus, Pigmy Love Circus, Lost Breed, Count Raven and Year Zero, among others, and though located on a different continent, that label’s contributions to this pivotal formative stage of Maryland doom aren’t to be understated. Internal Void‘s Standing on the Sun remains a prime example of the attitude and aesthetic of Maryland doom, and even 23 years later, its roughed-up-Candlemass vibes ring through loud and clear of a time when doom and metal were in many ways far more interchangeable than they are today.

In addition to¬†Little on drums,¬†the band at the time was comprised of vocalist¬†J.D. Williams, guitarist¬†Kelly Carmichael and bassist¬†Adam Heinzmann.¬†Williams also fronts¬†War Injun, and¬†Carmichael and¬†Heinzmann have done the requisite stints in¬†Pentagram, but¬†Internal Void remains a standout from their contemporaries. After¬†Standing on the Sun, it would be seven years before their second album,¬†Unearthed, arrived in 2000, and four after that for the follow-up,¬†Matricide. They reissued their 1991¬†Voyages demo in time to sell copies at¬†Roadburn¬†2012, which was where I last saw them¬†—¬†by coincidence,¬†The Obsessed also played and will be at¬†Maryland Doom Fest 2016 as well — and I’ve seen no indication of future plans past this one-off appearance. The basic operating rule seems to be that if you can see¬†Internal Void, see them, because you never know when the chance will come again.

Hope you enjoy¬†Standing on the Sun. For more on¬†Maryland Doom Fest 2016, click here for the Thee Facebooks page. If you’re going, I’ll look forward to seeing you there.

Getting there will require a bit of travel on my part, but next week is also the Quarterly Review, so keep an eye out for that. 50 reviews between next Monday and Friday. I expect by the end of it I’ll be very much ready to get out and see a show. We start Monday. Have I started putting any of it together yet? No I have not. As I’m also going to New York tomorrow and New Jersey on Sunday, I expect it’s going to be quite a weekend.

I want to thank Diane Farris aka Diane Kamikaze for having me down to WFMU once again for an appearance on her show, The Kamikaze Fun Machine. It was a pleasure and an honor to share the airwaves with her once again for two hours, and thank you as well if you had the chance to tune in. If not, the show is archived and available to check out here: https://wfmu.org/playlists/DK.

Of course, the focus next week is the Quarterly Review and travel to Maryland, but also look out for new videos from¬†Mars Red Sky (along with a cool announcement),¬†Kadavar,¬†Telstar Sound Drone and¬†Soon A.D., and a bunch of other news as well that I’m already behind on. This was my second week of unemployment before I start my new job at Hasbro, and it was fantastic. Really, this entire period has just completely underscored how ready I am to retire. I mean that. I’m not even kidding.

Gonna go head to the farmer’s market in a bit and get my hair cut, then enjoy a quiet evening with¬†The Patient Mrs. before tomorrow brings its own brand of chaos. I hope you have a great and safe weekend, and thank you for reading.

Please check out the forum and radio stream.

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Friday Full-Length: Iron Man, Black Night

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 30th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

Iron Man, Black Night (1993)

[Please note: Shadow Kingdom reissued Black Night in 2009 and the album is available on Bandcamp here.]

If you ever wanted a primer or a summary of the entire Maryland doom scene distilled into one record, it might be Iron Man‘s 1993 debut, Black Night¬†(reissue review here). I say that because even more than Pentagram‘s Relentless or The Obsessed‘s self-titled — both landmarks, make no mistake — Black Night has remained an underground phenomenon, and while its tracks and particularly the riffs of founding guitarist “Iron” Al Morris III are on par with any of the post-Sabbath downer metal that region has produced and at this point has influenced a lot of it, to a broader worldwide audience, Iron Man continue to be a relatively obscure act. Less so now than perhaps ever following the 2013 release of their latest album, South of the Earth (review here), on Rise Above, but still. Riffers don’t come much more underrated than Morris.

Whether that’s due to issues of race or if it was a lack of promotion at the time, I don’t know, but¬†Black Night is all the more exemplary for the whole of Maryland doom for being¬†undervalued. It is unremittingly straightforward, whether its the hook of its title-track or the basic frustration at root in the social commentary of “A Child’s Future,” and its roots are directly traced to¬†Black Sabbath and the heart of what doom metal was taking from them and melding to the gallop of the NWOBHM at the time.¬†Black Night, in being issued via the¬†German imprint¬†Hellhound, was one of¬†a swath of records from the Doom Capitol area that saw release at what was apparently just the right time to make a lasting impact, and one could easily look at it as well as concurrent offerings from¬†Unorthodox,¬†Internal Void,¬†The Obsessed,¬†Revelation and¬†Wretched as the blueprints for what Maryland doom has become.

As with any scene, the players involved are pivotal.¬†Morris has remained in¬†Iron Man, and vocalist¬†Rob Levey founded and ran the¬†Stoner Hands of Doom festival series, while drummer¬†Ron Kalimon¬†split his time with¬†Unorthodox. Bassist¬†Larry Brown¬†stuck around to play on¬†Iron Man‘s 1994 follow-up,¬†The Passage (reissue review here), and had played in¬†Force with¬†Morris as well, but parted ways with the band after that, and¬†Iron Man would go on to become a hub for players and vocalists in the tradition of¬†Pentagram, though by no means that extreme in turnover.

Hoping for a new¬†Iron Man release in 2016, but I haven’t heard any solid news in that regard. Now fronted by “Screaming Mad” Dee Calhoun with Louis Strachan on bass and Jason “Mot” Waldmann on drums, the band began playing new material live as of this summer. Hope you enjoy.

Well,¬†The Patient Mrs. is in Portland, Oregon, for a conference until Sunday, and you know what that means: Bachelor weekend! My plans? Make chicken soup, vacuum, and if there’s time, log the recent mail in the Excel file where I keep track of everything (physical; I’m sorry, but there’s no keeping up with Bandcamp links) that comes in for review. That last item might be ambitious, but either way, it’s gonna be a fucking rager. Look out.

Next week: Radio Adds! Yes. Radio Adds. It’s going to happen. No joke, I have well over 100 albums sitting in a folder on my desktop waiting to go on the server, and next week, it’s happening. It’s been since June, and it’s getting ridiculous, so the time has come. I’ll set it all up Sunday. Also Monday I’ll be streaming the new EP from¬†Return from the Grave that¬†Argonauta Records¬†is putting out, and maybe Tuesday I might (fingers crossed) have a¬†Death Hawks track premiere. I’m loving that album.¬†Svart does not screw around.

Speaking of streams, if you didn’t listen to it yet, that¬†Kristian Harting album is very much worth your time. Stream it here.

If you’re the celebrating-Halloween type, be safe. Whatever your plans might be — bet they don’t have you nearly as excited as the prospect of chicken soup has me — I hope you have a great and safe weekend. Please check out the forum and radio stream.

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Wino Wednesday: The Obsessed, “Back to Zero” from Lunar Womb

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 8th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

wino wednesday

An awful lot about Maryland doom can be explained by listening to¬†The Obsessed‘s¬†Lunar Womb.¬†Not everything, obviously, but many of the early-to-mid ’90s groups began putting out¬†albums¬†in the wake of¬†The Obsessed‘s reformation and subsequent to the release of their self-titled debut in 1990, whether it’s¬†Unorthodox¬†(first album ’92),¬†Wretched¬†(first album ’93),¬†Revelation¬†(together since the mid-’80s, first album in ’91),¬†Iron Man¬†(first demo ’88, album ’93)¬†or Internal Void¬†(same). It’s important to remember¬†Pentagram¬†were going at that time with the Bobby¬†Liebling, Victor¬†Griffin, Martin¬†Swaney¬†and Joe¬†Hasselvander¬†lineup and to note the impact that band had on the entire Doom Capitol region, but particularly for coming back after¬†Wino‘s stint in¬†Saint Vitus¬†ended,¬†The Obsessed¬†would have some measure of influence as well, and one that continues to resonate in trad doom today.

Released in 1991,¬†Lunar Womb¬†moved beyond¬†The Obsessed‘s self-titled with a sound that was darker, heavier and more forceful on the whole. Listening to it now, the production is dated — one can hear the ’90s about to happen in the drums — but the material holds up anyway, and “Back to Zero,” which begins side B of the vinyl, is one of the album’s best realized tracks.¬†Bassist Scott Reeder¬†takes a turn at vocals¬†over a driving groove and for a band whose overarching vibe is so straightforward, consistent largely in mood and pace, it’s kind of an unexpected turn. That said, even the first chugs of the intro/verse riff telegraph the fact that, indeed, you’re listening to¬†The Obsessed. The lineup of the band at this point was¬†Wino¬†on guitar/vocals,¬†Reeder¬†on bass and¬†Greg Rogers¬†on drums. Both¬†Reeder¬†and¬†Rogers¬†would later play in¬†Goatsnake¬†as well.

So far as I know,¬†the reunited version of¬†The Obsessed¬†never included “Back to Zero” in a set. Or if they did, there isn’t footage of it out there. Either way, it’s something a little different from them and worth singling out on this Wino Wednesday. Hope you enjoy:

The Obsessed, “Back to Zero” from Lunar Womb (1991)

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Wino Wednesday: The Obsessed, “Touch of Everything”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 23rd, 2014 by JJ Koczan

As far as The Obsessed deep cuts go, “Touch of Everything” is probably about as deep as they get. The song appeared as track 11 of the total 13 on The Obsessed‘s final album, 1994’s The Church Within. By then, the band was comprised of guitarist/vocalist Scott “Wino” Weinrich, bassist Guy Pinhas and drummer Greg Rogers, and whatever else you can say about¬†The Church Within, by the time it got down to its 11th track, it had pretty much played all its cards. I dig that record and all, but it’s a straightforward album across the board and there aren’t a lot of surprises as it moves into its second half. Accordingly, it’s easy for a song like “Touch of Everything” to get swallowed up by all the classic riffing and rolling grooves surrounding, which, duh, is all the more reason to single it out. Presumably the person who put together the fan video below for it had the same idea.

What “Touch of Everything” might have to do with the 1956 sci-fi film¬†Forbidden Planet, I don’t know. That one’s a mystery. But that movie — which was the first appearance of Robby the Robot, which would later appear on¬†tv’s¬†Lost in Space¬†and in numerous other films and shows and which also served as a major inspiration for the original¬†Star Trek¬†— is nonetheless the basis for the video, and it’s been edited so that the footage more or less lines up with the song. YouTube user “DaemonPazuzu” obviously put a lot of work into editing, so I’m not about to trash the effort just because I don’t see what one has to do with the other. Screw it, you get¬†The Obsessed¬†and old sci-fi. I’d hardly call that a loss.

Enjoy the song and the clip and have a great Wino Wednesday:

The Obsessed, “Touch of Everything”

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Wino Wednesday: The Obsessed, Lunar Womb in Full

Posted in Bootleg Theater on June 12th, 2013 by JJ Koczan

Reissued in 2006 on CD through MeteorCity and vinyl through 20 Buck Spin, the 1991 Lunar Womb sophomore outing by The Obsessed still seems underappreciated on repeat listens. It was the recorded debut of the lineup of drummer Greg Rogers, bassist Scott Reeder and guitarist/vocalist Scott “Wino” Weinrich — then winding down his tenure with Saint Vitus following the release of V in 1990 — and indeed the only album this trio would put out. By the time The Obsessed got around to releasing the follow-up, 1994’s The Church Within, Reeder was long since departed to Kyuss and replaced by Guy Pinhas.

Reeder winds up a major contributor to Lunar Womb, whether it’s his bass coming to the fore on the later “No Mas” or his taking lead vocals on second track “Bardo” or side B’s “Back to Zero,” but the album is best taken as a whole and on that level, it’s easy to see how it became so central to the blueprint of modern traditional doom. From Wino‘s dreary riffing on the title-track to the faster rush of “Spew” and the ultra-primitive “No Blame” to the muffled heartbeat noises that cap closer “Embryo,” the completeness of Lunar Womb as both an overarching flow of songs and a collection of individual standouts isn’t to be overlooked.

It’s easy to argue the enduring appeal of Lunar Womb and its tracks is part of why The Obsessed have been able to reunite to such fanfare at fests like Roadburn and this year’s Maryland Deathfest (video posted here). With production from the band along with Mathias Schneeberger and the striking Saturn Devouring His Son (circa 1819) cover art by Spanish painter Francisco de Goya, the album taps into a timeless sphere of doom that’s perhaps even more resonant with 22 years of hindsight than it was at the time. After hosting the band’s 1990 self-titled debut a couple weeks back, it seems only fair to give some follow-up.

Here’s The Obsessed‘s Lunar Womb in its entirety. Enjoy and have a great Wino Wednesday:

The Obsessed, Lunar Womb (1991) in Full

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