Sleep, Pentagram and Cult of Luna to Headline Psycho California 2015

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 15th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

True to their word, it’s Jan. 15 and Psycho California 2015 has announced the headliners for what looks like the best American festival lineup I’ve seen since the days of Emissions from the Monolith. That’s not to take away from the hard work anyone else is doing, but just look at the list of bands. It’s unreal. You’d want to be everywhere at the same time to see all of it. Absolutely wild.

Sleep and Pentagram were pretty clear choices to headline. Not only for being legends in the heavy underground, but for also being just about two of the only bands left. Sweden’s Cult of Luna were something of a surprise, but for a festival already showing a European reach in bringing aboard the likes of Samsara Blues Experiment and Stoned Jesus, they make sense. Hell of a bill. Kudos to anyone who actually gets to go to the thing.

Announcement follows, courtesy of the PR wire:





Psycho California, the west coast’s first annual metal festival and a must see for fans of doom, heavy psych and sludge, has announced the headliners for this year’s event: Cult of Luna (May 15), Sleep (May 16) and Pentagram, who will perform First Daze Here in its entirety (May 17).

“2015 is going to be a slow year for Cult of Luna. However as much as we are musicians we are also fans,” said Cult of Luna’s Johannes Persson. “Evaluating if the offer to play Psycho California was worth dusting off our instruments was not hard after looking on the line-up. Being on the same bill as Pentagram, Sleep and a festival packed with the best bands around is a privilege in itself and we’ll try to live up to that honor.”

The lineup for Psycho California is: Sleep, Pentagram, Cult of Luna, Kylesa, OM, Earth, Russian Circles, Bedemon, Conan, Wrench, Eyehategod, Indian, Earthless, Pallbearer, Stoned Jesus, Old Man Gloom, Cave In, Acid Witch, Truckfighters, Tombs, Bang, Electric Citizen, Coffinworm, SubRosa, Eagle Twin, Mammatus, True Widow, Anciients, Bellwitch, Dead Meadow, Lord Dying, Death By Stereo, Radio Moscow, Ancient Altar, Samsara Blues Experiment, Atriarch, Elder, Mothership, The Well, Deathkings, Wo Fat, Rozamov, Destroyer of Light, Highlands, Bloodmoon, Slow Season, Goatsnake, Crypt Trip, Wrench, Lords of Beacon House, Tumbleweed Dealer, Sinister Haze, Blackout, Red Wizard, Banquet and Loom.

Festival interludes will be provided by Housecore Records’ artist Author & Punisher and vinyl DJ set from Bob Lugowe (Relapse Records) and Sean Pellet (Last Daze Here).

Previously announced early bird tickets sold out immediately. Tickets for the festival are on-sale this morning with both a 3-day pass ($149.50) and a 3-day VIP pass available ($256.66)

VIP packages include a 3-day festival pass, a signed screen print concert poster by David D’Andrea, express entry via artist check-in booth, access to artist VIP lounge, a limited edition Thief X Obey festival tee, a Psycho record bag and patch as well as access to a complimentary craft tequila bar, premium microbrews and artisan snacks.

Sleep, “The Clarity/Dragonaut” Live in Chicago, Aug. 28, 2014

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Psycho California 2015 Announces Initial Lineup

Posted in Whathaveyou on December 15th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

The list of bands, quite frankly, is astonishing, but even more astonishing is the fact that  Thief Presents‘ Psycho California 2015 (formerly Psycho de Mayo) hasn’t announced its headliners yet, because these sure as shit look like headliners to me.

A three-day festival set to take place at The Observatory in Santa Ana, CA, Psycho California will feature the following acts:

psycho california

Here’s that list again: Kylesa, Om, Earth, Russian Circles, Orange Goblin, Bedemon, Conan, Indian, Pallbearer, Cave In, Old Man Gloom, Tombs, Earthless, Truckfighters, Bang, Eyehategod, Crowbar, SubRosa, Lord Dying, Acid Witch, Electric Citizen, Coffinworm, Eagle Twin, Stoned Jesus, Mammatus, True Widow, Bell Witch, Death by Stereo, Radio Moscow, Samsara Blues Experiment, Anciients, Elder, Mothership, Ancient Altar, The Well, Deathkings, Wo Fat, Rozamov, Destroyer of Light, Highlands, Bloodmoon, Slow Season, Crypt Trip, Lords of Beacon House, Tumbleweed Dealer, Sinister Haze, Blackout, Red Wizard, Banquet, Loom.

Plus interludes by Author and Punisher.

God damn.

Not only does it cover both coasts, huge bands, legends and up and comers, but the reach is international. Take special note of Conan, since their appearance means that Maryland Deathfest won’t be their only US date, and also Samsara Blues Experiment and Stoned Jesus — two killer European bands that you don’t even go after unless you know what the fuck you’re doing. That also hugely extends the possibilities for headlining acts. It’s an assemblage that’s beyond impressive, and if you haven’t already looked up flights to Southern California, I don’t know what to tell you. As I write this it’s after one in the morning on Sunday night, and you know I wouldn’t be doing that if my mind wasn’t leaking out of my ears at the thought of experiencing this thing.

Stay tuned for more to come, since as the poster says, headliners will be announced on Jan. 15. I’ll be looking forward to finding out who else is in store.

Psycho California on Thee Facebooks

Thief Presents on Twitter

Thief Presents on Thee Facebooks

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Roadburn 2014: Sets from Harsh Toke, YOB, Indian, Horse Latitudes, Morne, The Vintage Caravan, Obliteration and Lord Dying Available to Stream

Posted in audiObelisk on July 16th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

It’s a formidable batch of streams this time around from Roadburn 2014, with YOB‘s The Great Cessation played in its entirety, and gigs from Indian, who by all accounts killed at the fest, Morne, ditto, Lord Dying and more. For me though, like the first batch with their Lenny Kaye jam, the highlight is probably Harsh Toke. They were my find of the fest. When their Light up and Live album came out in 2013 on Tee Pee, I guess I didn’t pay enough attention and missed it, but after seeing them with the aforementioned Mr. Kaye, I knew there was no way I was going to let their set at the Afterburner pass without watching at least for a little bit.

As such, the San Diego jam-rippers were how I closed out Roadburn 2014, stopping by the Green Room to watch them tear into heavy psych fluidity as though you could actually tear into something fluid. Killer band. I’ve spent much time with Light up and Live since April, and I’m glad to have the chance — thanks, as always, to Marcel van de Vondervoort and his crew — to relive their show. That’s not to mention YOB doing The Great Cessation, which was hypnotic to the point of being trance-inducing, and Morne and Indian and The Vintage CaravanLord Dying and Obliteration, the last two adding a malevolent, lurching extremity. Very cool mix.

No big surprise there, I guess, since the festival has become so eclectic. Plenty to dig into here so I won’t delay further:

Harsh Toke – Live at Roadburn 2014

Horse Latitudes – Live at Roadburn 2014

Indian – Live at Roadburn 2014

Lord Dying – Live at Roadburn 2014

Morne – Live at Roadburn 2014

Obliteration – Live at Roadburn 2014

The Vintage Caravan – Live at Roadburn 2014 (Friday, April 11th)

Yob – Live at Roadburn 2014 (The Great Cessation)

Thanks to Walter and Roadburn for letting me host the streams. The first and second batches are still available as well, and for all of the Roadburn 2014 coverage, click here.

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Indian Added to Roadburn 2014 Lineup

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 3rd, 2014 by JJ Koczan

Today, Chicago’s Indian were announced as the latest addition to the Roadburn 2014 lineup. Indian will have a new album out later this month in the form of From all Purity, the follow-up to 2011’s Guiltless (review here), and their joining makes them the seventh Relapse Records band by my count playing Roadburn this year alongside Locrian, Lord Dying, Windhand, Inter Arma, True Widow and -(16)-. Seems like a bit of a takeover happening there, but of course with a lineup as diverse as Roadburn‘s, there will be plenty for the labelmates to blend in with over the course of Roadburn‘s four days, including the annual Sunday Afterburner.

The fest itself is sold out (no real surprise there), but there are tickets left for the Afterburner and the link for that along with the announcement of Indian joining the lineup and the track “Directional” from their new record can be found below:

Indian Set To Devastate Roadburn Festival 2014

Roadburn Festival is pleased to announce the addition of Chicago-based doom warriors, Indian. The band have been purveyors of the finest blackened doom for over a decade, and this month will see the release of their latest opus, From All Purity, via Relapse Records.

‘Directional’, a brand new track taken from From All Purity, has just been released and can be listened to HERE.

Roadburn will be playing host to Indian on Saturday 12th of April, at the 013 venue in Tilburg, The Netherlands, when the crushing four piece will bring their sonic offerings to life.

Roadburn Festival 2014 will run for four days from Thursday, April 10th to Sunday, April 13th 2014 at the 013 venue in Tilburg, The Netherlands.

Tickets for the traditional Afterburner event on Sunday, April 13th at the 013 venue in Tilburg, The Netherlands are still available. Get in on the action HERE!

Indian, “Directional” from From all Purity

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Indian, Guiltless: No Remorse in the Swarm of Flies

Posted in Reviews on April 29th, 2011 by JJ Koczan

Even before I opened the liner notes, I knew two things about Guiltless, the fourth full-length from Chicago misanthropic doomers Indian, just from listening, and those two things were: Sanford Parker recorded and that the guitars were running through Emperor cabinets. Tonally, the Chicago doom/dirge style (typified in several cases by those two elements) has become so distinct, so singularly its own, that one knows right away what one is dealing with. Of course, it helps that Indian already have a foundation of three strong outings behind them, but this, their much-anticipated Relapse Records debut, would seem to be a coming of age for the five-piece. Their frightful crashes, haunting atmospherics – in this I’ll liken them to Pig Destroyer, despite the obvious tempo disparity – and generally unsettling approach feels more solidified across Guiltless than it did on either Slights and Abuse or The Sycophant (or the CD compilation of the two) or their 2005 Seventh Rule debut, The Unquiet Sky. As a serial killer matures in a modus operandi and ritualizes his violence, so too does Indian seem to have developed into the beastly form that presents itself on Guiltless’ seven tracks.

And if you think the serial killer analogy might be a little strong, I humbly ask that you take another listen to Guiltless’ frantic and disturbing nature. Tonally and atmospherically consistent, the album nonetheless seethes with an underlying energy and tension that comes out on nearly every song – the only notable exception being the late acoustic interlude “Supplicants,” which is creepy, but not necessarily the same kind of unhinged feel. For the rest of its vinyl-ready 41-minute duration finds Indian – guitarist/vocalists Dylan O’Toole and Will Lindsay (the latter ex-Middian and Wolves in the Throne Room, bassist Ron DeFries, drummer Bill Bumgardner (also of Lord Mantis) and noisemaker Sean Patton – reveling in their dense tonality, cutting through it only with hard-hit snares and vicious, throat-wrenching screams. As Guiltless opener “No Grace” breaks into just the guitar to introduce the movement that will encompass its last two minutes or so, one feels in listening that the album has already been on for much longer than it has. The songs are pillow-over-the-face oppressive, and the performances blisteringly tight.

“The Fate Before Fate” finds Indian underscoring black metal riffs with doomed groove, Bumgardner landing heavy on his cymbals in a noisy wash complemented by Patton’s underlying layers. The vocals are far back beneath O’Toole’s and Lindsay’s guitars, and some of Guiltless’ most scathing, working in the song’s faster pace to set up the lumbering feel of the ensuing title-track, which closes side A in madman fashion. It’s on “Guiltless” that Indian perhaps most uses the single-note thudding crashes that seem to pop up on several cuts, and to the greatest effect. The song is unflinchingly heavy and downright terrifying, DeFries’ bass working well with the drums to keep some movement happening under the raucous noise of the surface. O’Toole and Lindsay are in synch ringing out notes over the hits, and it’s almost as though the song grows more insistent over the course of its eight minutes, until finally it leads directly into “Guilty” on the CD (the LP requires a flip, so I imagine some of the effect is lost), which renews the pacing of “The Fate Before Fate” but keeps some of the same laborious feel as “Guiltless.” You won’t be surprised to find out it’s really fucking heavy, really fucking abrasive, and really fucking dark.

Read more »

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audiObelisk EXCLUSIVE: Indian Premiere New Track from Guiltless

Posted in audiObelisk on March 31st, 2011 by JJ Koczan

They’re Chicago‘s forerunners of deranged doom, and with their 2011 Relapse Records debut, Guiltless, the five-piece Indian are showing no signs of letting up. The label was kind enough to grant me permission to premiere the righteously heavy song “Guilty” from the album, and it’s my pleasure to host it for streaming on the player below. Prepare for an adventure into the thoroughly fucked:

Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!

I told you. Shit is nuts.

Guiltless was recorded by Sanford Parker (who else?) at Semaphore Recording in Chicago, boasts artwork by Scott Fricke, and is available for pre-order from Relapse at this location. The label has more info on the record and Indian‘s upcoming release show. Dig it:

Guiltless will see its North American release on April 12 (April 25 internationally) on CD, 12” vinyl, and digitally. The CD is available for pre-order now at and a deluxe digital edition with a bonus track and digital booklet is available now at iTunes.

Indian has announced a Chicago record release show in support of Guiltless for April 9 at Subterranean (2011 West North Avenue). This is a co-record release show with labelmates Bloodiest. The show starts at 10:00pm and tickets are available at this location.

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