Hypertonus Post 360° Video for “H.E.D.E.R.A.”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on August 18th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

hypertonus

The new Hypertonus video starts out with a warning for those with sensitivity to flashing lights or sudden shifts in visual stimuli, and that’s a warning worth heeding if you’re prone to seizures or headaches as a result of changes in light, color, and so on. It hasn’t been all that long since the Bremen, Germany, instrumental three-piece gave us an interactive glimpse of the Harbor Inn 360° Session in which they took part by premiering a clip for “Phantasmagoria” (posted here) from their earlier-2017 self-released debut album, Tidal Wave (review here), but just a month later they’re following-up that video with a new one for the song “H.E.D.E.R.A.” that seems to come from the same source. Hey, if you’ve got it, use it.

Like “Phantasmagoria” before it, “H.E.D.E.R.A.” — an acronym for… oh wait, sorry, I have no idea what it’s an acronym for — bends the line between heavy rock and psychedelia. One can hear post-rocking airiness in the guitar of Patrick Büch, but the groove of bassist Arne Staats and drummer Hannes Christen is earthier and laden with a crunch that complements the leads rather than contrasts. As was the case throughout Tidal WaveHypertonus set themselves up for consideration as a progressive outfit whose style may just be in an early developmental stage in comparison to what they might go on to accomplish, but nonetheless already shows them with a pointed intention toward individuality that, hopefully, will underpin subsequent releases as well as it does the first full-length.

“H.E.D.E.R.A.” doesn’t have the same clickable interactivity as had “Phantasmagoria,” but is distinguished through its camera shifts and lighting effects for something of a different feel. In either case, it serves well to demonstrate the burgeoning nuance of Hypertonus‘ approach, and whether you can actually watch the video or not without it overwhelming your senses — that’s not me knocking anyone with that kind of sensitivity at all; I often get immediate headaches from flashing lights and find it’s simply too much for me, especially in videos and also in the case of this one — the live performance of the track, which checks in at just under six minutes long, is easily worth that minimal investment of your time.

They promise more clips to come from this session, so when I see what’s next, I’ll do my best to keep up. Till then, please enjoy:

Hypertonus, “H.E.D.E.R.A.” Harbor Inn Session

This is HYPERTONUS, an instrumental three-piece hailing from Bremen, Germany, playing their track ‘H.E.D.E.R.A.’ at the Harbor Inn Studios Bremen.

This is the second part of our ‘Harbor Inn Sessions 360°’ – there’s more to be released soon!

Part I: ‘PHANTASMAGORIA’: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0u2TEudxuqk

Listen to our debut ‘TIDAL WAVE’ here:
https://hypertonus.bandcamp.com

Hypertonus is:
Hannes Christen (drums)
Arne Staats (bass)
Patrick Büch (guitar)

Thanks to:
Timo Hollmann – Record Engineer
Ole Janßen – Camera & Audio-Editing

Hypertonus live:
18.08. – Bremen – Überseefestival Warm-Up
25.08. – Berlin – Mensch Meier
09.11. – Hamburg – Hafenklang

Hypertonus on Thee Facebooks

Hypertonus on Instagram

Hypertonus on Bandcamp

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Hypertonus Premiere “Phantasmagoria” 360° Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 3rd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

hypertonus

Plenty of bands give a look at their studio or rehearsal spaces in their videos these days. It’s kind of the standard procedure if a group needs a clip for a song; get a friend or two or — if they’ve got access to some resources — an actual director, a couple cameras, maybe a GoPro or something like that, editing software, and blamo. Video accomplished. Some are legitimately well made, others just get the job done, but few offer the kind of comprehensive glimpse at the creative process that German instrumentalist trio Hypertonus bring to their clip for “Phantasmagoria,” which lets those viewing it have a 360°, click-ably interactive view of the funk-informed Bremen-based outfit as they perform the closing jam of their self-released 2017 full-length debut, Tidal Wave (review here).

That is to say, by clicking on the little directional arrows in the upper left corner of the video embed — not to draw your eye away from the text here, but I’d actually recommend you go full-screen for this endeavor — you can actually spin and rotate the camera vertically and horizontally as guitarist Patrick Büch, bassist Arne Staats and drummer Hannes Christen jam out the song. They’re not the first to do this kind of thing, but it’s awesome. The three of them are gathered around in a circle, and whether you want to look at the lighting on the ceiling or the pedals on the floor or the tv monitor where the 360° filming apparatus — if you’ve ever seen one, it’s like a big ball of cameras; both expensive- and fun-looking — is showing the band to themselves as they play. It’s called a Harbor Inn Session, and “Phantasmagoria” is well suited to it at an exploratory eight minutes long, giving Hypertonus plenty of time to flesh out the material and the audience plenty of time to explore the space in which they’re doing so.

Hypertonus have a few local dates in Germany coming up over the course of July and August, and you’ll find those under the video, along with more background on the band, but I hope you’ll take the time to really dig into the “Phantasmagoria” clip as well, since it’s an enjoyable way for a band to present the song and something you don’t run into every day in the standard trio-in-room fare.

However much actual playing around with it you do, please enjoy:

Hypertonus, “Phantasmagoria” official video

Instrumental music between experimental, jazzrock and funk with the run to nearly insane sounds – that’s what HYPERTONUS is about.

These three men from Bremen, Germany are a thrilling group having a wide range with rough sounds that will knock you down – but also a beautiful soundscape which will lend you a helping hand to stand up again.

In March 2017 they released their debut TIDAL WAVE, followed by a tour through Germany and Netherlands sharing the stage with bands like Toundra, 1000mods and Mother’s Cake.

Listen to our debut album ‘TIDAL WAVE’: http://hypertonus.bandcamp.com

Hypertonus is:
Hannes Christen (drums)
Arne Staats (bass)
Patrick Büch (guitar)

Next dates:
14.07. – Bremerhaven – Rock Center Festival
29.07. – Bremen – Dümpeldoom Festival
18.08. – Bremen – Überseefestival Warm-Up
25.08. – Berlin – Mensch Meier

Hypertonus on Thee Facebooks

Hypertonus on Instagram

Hypertonus on Bandcamp

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The Obelisk Radio Adds: Big Kizz, Mt. Mountain, Mage, Hypertonus, Lee Van Cleef

Posted in Radio on May 22nd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

the obelisk radio cavum

We’re only slightly overdue for a batch of adds to The Obelisk Radio. I need to start setting a reminder or something. By the time this post goes up, my hope is that we’ll actually be off the backup server and back on the full or at least mostly-full playlist. It’s been a long road, as the terrible opening theme to Star Trek: Enterprise once said, but I think Slevin has it ready to roll, and there’s still some rebuilding to do, but I think it can be an ongoing thing working on the new hard drive. We’ve worn the crap out of that backup playlist. It would be nice to not have to use it for a while. Fingers crossed, anyhow.

Whichever server these files wind up on, they’ll be joining some playlist as soon as humanly possible. Let’s do the rundown in the meantime.

The Obelisk Radio Adds for May 22, 2017:

Big Kizz, Eye on You

big kizz eye on you

Some who take on the debut single from Swedish trio Big Kizz will find the band reminiscent of some of the rawer moments of long-running Danish garage-psych rockers Baby Woodrose, but for many, an additional draw to the three-track/eight-minute offering (delivered via Tee Pee Records) will be the lineup, which features bassist John Hoyles (Spiders, ex-Witchcraft), guitarist/vocalist Pontus Westerman (also of Lady Banana), and perhaps most notably, drummer Axel Sjöberg in his first recorded appearance after splitting with Graveyard. Turns out he’s still a fantastic drummer. His play in leadoff cut “Eye on You” and the push he brings to “Baby Boy” and the closing Roky Erickson cover “White Faces” will surely lead some to relate Big Kizz to Sjöberg‘s former outfit, if only in their earliest going (which was also on Tee Pee, remember), but the truth is the trio show themselves to be on a different trip throughout Eye on You, as they bring the aforementioned garage stylization forward amid classic boogie and, particularly in “Baby Boy,” nod toward mid-’60s psychedelia in a quick but fluid bridge. The Roky Erickson cover could hardly be more fitting, handclaps and all, but it’s the sense of movement in the two originals that shows the most potential here as Big Kizz seem to set their eyes on establishing their dynamic and building from there. Will be interested to hear what they do with the context of a full-length and if some of the psych in “Eye on You” and “Baby Boy” is relegated to flourish or if it comes to the fore as they develop, but they’re off to a rousing start.

Big Kizz on Thee Facebooks

Big Kizz at Tee Pee Records

 

Mt. Mountain Dust

mt. mountain dust

Devotees and pilgrims of longform psychedelia will no doubt and should rejoice at Dust (on Cardinal Fuzz), the maybe-second long-player from Perth, Australia, five-piece Mt. Mountain, which from its 17-minute titular opener and longest track (immediate points) unfolds a ritual of superior immersion and conscious trance inducement. Over the course of four songs/37 minutes total, Mt. Mountain unfold a sprawl reportedly intended to capture the atmosphere of the Australian Outback — and maybe they get there, I don’t know; I’ve never been — but either way, the balance of repetition and depth in “Floating Eyes” and the shimmer of the nine-minute “Kokoti” speak to a varied ecosystem that, indeed, one might get lost in, never to return. Mellotron, organ, djembe and percussion play a central role in the overarching sense of mind-expansion along with the guitar, bass, vocals, drums, etc., but it’s the combination of elements, the variety between tracks — they’re jam-based, but distinct songs, to be sure — that really stands Dust apart from much of drift-minded modern heavy psych. One advises patience with the drones of the opener and the cautious first steps that the fading in percussion seems to be taking, as the rewards are considerable when it comes to the front-to-back experience Mt. Mountain offer, which is stark, striking, marked by underlying threat and casts a feeling of the infinite that no doubt was the very intent behind its making.

Mt. Mountain on Thee Facebooks

Cardinal Fuzz webstore

 

Mage, Green

mage green

Self-released in a six-panel digipak with decidedly grim artwork courtesy of Dominic SohorGreen is the third full-length from Leicestershire, UK, heavy rockers Mage. Last heard from with 2014’s Last Orders (review here), they retain the blend of heavy rock groove and metallic aggression that’s become their signature sound, and continue the march forward in finding a space between post-Down/Orange Goblin dude-rockery and doomlier fare. Vocalist Tom blends harsh growls and a cleaner approach on opener “Nowhere to Nothing” and the later “Primitive Drive” while mostly avoiding sounding like Phil Anselmo, and as guitarist Woody, bassist Mark and drummer Andy dig into the slower roll of “Eclipse King,” Mage seem to hit the mark they’re shooting for in terms of style and songcraft. The centerpiece title-track has a little more head-bob to its central progression — and then there’s that wah; always fun — but they’re right to mess around with the proportion of stylistic elements throughout to add variety, and the 10-minute closer “Vultures Mass” does well in taking the punch of “Nowhere to Nothing” and “Heroic Elegy” at the album’s start and pushing it outward into a satisfying apex. Straightforward in its intent, given a sense of mass via a recording job at Skyhammer Studios and executed with a clean conscience, Green is the work of a band who know what they want from their sound and know how to make it happen, which, thankfully, they do in these tracks.

Mage on Thee Facebooks

Mage on Bandcamp

 

Hypertonus, Tidal Wave

hypertonus tidal wave

Tidal Wave is the self-issued debut full-length from German instrumentalist three-piece Hypertonus, and it lands some six years after the band first got together, preceded by a semi-eponymous 2013 EP, HPRTNS. If the more-than-half-a-decade stretch seems like a while for a group to get to their first long-player, it might be, but one suspects the Bremen-based troupe comprised of guitarist Patrick Büch, bassist Arne Staats and drummer Hannes Christen spent a significant amount of that time in the jam room developing their sound, because what they cast over this nine-track/45-minute outing is a keen progressivism and chemistry that feels not at all happenstance. With shifts into and out of technically-minded parts that seem to be driven by Staats‘ bass, Hypertonus reportedly tracked Tidal Wave live, and I have no reason not to believe it, particularly given the eight-minute closer “Phantasmagoria (Improvisation Jam),” which departs from the quick psych-meditation of “Aeropause” and the almost jazzy rhythms and post-rock guitar of “Expect the Sky Below” to bring the band’s style even more to life for the listener to take on. It’s a heady release, and some of the changes come across as willfully choppy — playing with expectation in a “now we’re over here!” kind of way — but there’s a marked sense of accomplishment throughout that’s nothing if not well earned.

Hypertonus on Thee Facebooks

Hypertonus on Bandcamp

 

Lee Van Cleef, Holy Smoke

lee van cleef holy smoke

Pressed to gorgeous-sounding vinyl by White Dwarf Records last November, the five-track instrumental Holy Smoke is the debut LP from Naples, Italy, jammers Lee Van Cleef, and aside from its righteously striking cover art, one finds primary impressions in the gotta-hear-it bass tone of Pietro Trinità La Tegola, the molten lysergism in Marco Adamo‘s guitar and the grounding-but-not-too-grounding effectiveness of drummer Guido Minervini in anchoring a jam like the 13-minute “Banshee,” which takes the best lessons of groups like Germany’s Electric Moon and Portugal’s Black Bombaim and brings them to methodical, engagingly rumbling fruition. Nod persists through the more uptempo, Tee Pee Records-style centerpiece “Hell Malo,” but the three-piece seem even more comfortable dug into the post-Sleep riffing of the subsequent “Mah?na,” finishing that track with a standout wash of a guitar lead ahead of the brighter-feeling closer “Towelie,” which underscores an otherworldly vibe that turns out to have been in Holy Smoke all along. Lee Van Cleef have already followed Holy Smoke up with a single titled “Everyone Should Kill an Old Hippy” (discussed here) — it’s worth noting that this album starts with “Heckle Yuppies,” so they’re not fans of them either — and one can’t imagine it will be long before they answer back with another full-length offering. The question is how they’ll ultimately distinguish themselves from the crowded European jam-based heavy psych underground, but there’s nothing in these tracks to give the impression they can’t or won’t do so as they continue to grow.

Lee Van Cleef on Thee Facebooks

White Dwarf Records on Thee Facebooks

 

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