Pallbearer Announce Tour Dates with Tribulation; New Video Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 11th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

pallbearer

Is it really even necessarily at this point to mention that Pallbearer are among the most important American doom acts of their generation? Isn’t it kind of a given? I don’t know. Whatever. If you don’t know that, it’s probably because your taste dictates otherwise. That is, if you’re reading this, it’s not like you haven’t heard of them. Especially after last year’s Warning-gone-prog LP Heartless (review here), they’re about as close to household names as doom gets without being Black Sabbath.

It’s not a mistake either. They didn’t just happen into success. They’ve broken their collective ass on the road for the last half-decade-plus, and the thread continues this weekend as they begin yet another European tour. Copious festival dates will round out on Aug. 16 in Germany at Summer Breeze — is it the same Summer Breeze you got all those 1996 bootlegs from? I don’t know, go to Radio Shack and spend $100 on like five CD-Rs and I’ll take two hours trying to burn you copies on my 1x CD-RW drive and we’ll find out. After that, they’ll take it to the streets in the western half of the US and also north up into Canada, this time in the company of Tribulation. Much to do.

And as if that didn’t count as busy enough, they’ve got a new video for “Thorns” at the bottom of this post, and keep an eye out. In the band’s quote below, they talk about “revisiting and adding new dimension” to stuff from their whole discography. True enough they’ve undertaken significant growth in their sound, but to me, that sounds like the kind of thing they might want to represent on a live album somewhere down the line. That’s speculation, of course, but you never know.

Unless they say something. Then you know. But they haven’t said anything. So there.

PR wire, take me away:

pallbearer tribulation tour

PALLBEARER ANNOUNCE NORTH AMERICAN TOUR, PREMIERE MUSIC VIDEO FOR ‘THORNS’

See them on the road with Tribulation in September & October

Ascending Arkansas progressive doom quartet Pallbearer will head to European + UK shores next week for a run of shows and festival appearances and today, the band has announced a North American tour with Sweden’s finest metal exports Tribulation this Fall. In anticipation of their forthcoming tour dates, Pallbearer has unleashed a live music video for the track “Thorns”, taken from their recent release, Heartless. The live video was shot during part of the band’s U.S. tour back in February; watch the video for “Thorns” here: https://youtu.be/ooKeykeDsHQ

In regard to the upcoming tours, Pallbearer commented: “After a long period of constant touring behind Heartless, it’s almost time for us to settle in to the cold season and begin crafting our next musical endeavor. But before that, we are heading out once more across North America to bring this chapter to its conclusion. We look forward to stretching out our sets each night on this double bill with Tribulation, revisiting and adding new dimension to material across our entire catalogue.” See all Pallbearer tour dates below.

PALLBEARER, ON TOUR:
July 13 DE Hamburg – Molotow Club
July 14 BE Dour – Dour Festival
July 15 NL Nijmegen – Valkhof Festival
July 16 UK London – Islington Assembly Hall
July 17 UK Glasgow – Stereo
July 18 UK Leeds – Brudenell Social Club
July 19 UK Bristol – The Fleece
July 21 DE Crispendorf – Chaos Descends Festival
July 23 IT Milan – Circolo Magnolia
July 24 SL Tolmin – Metaldays festival
August 3 DK Copenhagen – Vega
August 4 DE Beelen – Krach am Bach Festival
August 5 DE Cottbus – Zum Faulen August
August 7 HR Primosten – SuperUho Festival
August 8 HU Budapest – A38
August 9 CZ Josefov – Brutal Assault Festival
August 10 DE Bad Kotzting – Void Fest
August 12 UK Derbyshire – Bloodstock Festival
August 14 DE Wiesbaden – Schlachthof
August 15 CH Winterthur – Gaswerk
August 16 DE Dinkelsbuhl – Summer Breeze Festival

September 15 – Toronto ON – Lee’s Palace *
September 16 – Detroit MI – Magic Stick *
September 18 – Chicago IL – Bottom Lounge *
September 19 – Minneapolis MN – Turf Club *
September 21 – Denver CO – Bluebird *
September 22 – Salt Lake City UT – Metro *
September 24 – Calgary AB – Dickens *
September 25 – Edmonton AB – Starlite *
September 27 – Vancouver BC – Rickshaw *
September 28 – Seattle WA – El Corazon *
September 29 – Portland OR – Hawthorne *
October 1 – San Francisco CA – Slim’s *
October 3 – Phoenix AZ – Rebel Lounge *
October 5 – Austin TX – Barracuda *
October 6 – Dallas TX – Trees *
October 7 – Houston TX – White Oak *
* w/ Tribulation

Buy tickets: http://pallbearerdoom.com/tour

Pallbearer are:
Brett Campbell | lead vocals, electric & acoustic guitars, synthesizers
Devin Holt | electric & acoustic guitars, vocals
Joseph D. Rowland | electric bass, vocals, synthesizers
Mark Lierly | percussion

https://www.facebook.com/pallbearerdoom
https://twitter.com/pallbearerdoom
https://instagram.com/pallbearerdoom/
https://www.profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/

Pallbearer, “Thorns” official video

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Iron Tongue Post New Single Pallbearer’s Blues

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 9th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

iron tongue

I’m assuming that the new Iron Tongue three-songer single, Pallbearer’s Blues, isn’t, you know, about the band’s fellow Arkansas doom brethren in the band Pallbearer. Certainly anything’s possible, but far more likely the title and proximity is a coincidence. Nonetheless, as Iron Tongue follow-up 2016’s long-player, Witches (review here), they show an increasing diversity of sound with vocalist Stephanie Smittle taking lead vocals on “Pallbearer’s Blues” itself and bassist Andy Warr both starting third cut “Darker Still” with an automatically swinging low end groove and stepping up for lead vocals there, while erstwhile frontman Christopher Farris Terry (see also: Rwake) moves to a backing position in both pieces. CT was the one who alerted me to the tracks, which are out now through Spotify and iTunes, where both Witches and the band’s Neurot Recordings-issued 2013 debut, The Dogs Have Barked, The Birds Have Flown (review here). Hard to believe that record’s five years old already. Time, flying and all that.

As to whether the new single precedes a third full-length, I’m not sure, but Iron Tongue would be just about on pace with a release sometime next year, so it’s worth keeping an eye out, and worth checking out the single in the meantime to hear how the band is continually coming into their own. I don’t know if you need a Spotify account to stream the tracks, but since I have a Spotify account, I’d imagine that’s not a problem anyway, since I’m generally the last person on the planet to sign onto that kind of thing after everyone else.

In any case, have at it:

iron tongue pallbearers blues

Iron Tongue is releasing a single for 2 songs, with art from Nate Powell. For the songs Pallbearer’s Blues and Darker Still.

Nate Powell did the art. Come Again, March books 1-3, Any Empire, Swallow Me Whole…

Also, Stephanie Smittle takes lead on the first song, and our bass player Andy is doing lead vocals on the 2nd song. I [CT] sing back up all over it.

Tracklisting:
1. Pallbearer’s Blues
2. Mark’s Diddy
3. Darker Still

Iron Tongue is:
Mark Chiaro – Guitar
Andy Warr – Bass
Stephanie Smittle – Vocals
Stan James – Drums
Chris Terry – Vocals
Adam Faucett – Guitar
JR Top – Keys

https://www.facebook.com/Irontongue/
https://irontongue.bandcamp.com/
https://open.spotify.com/artist/2Ow4SVdhK4jN8jsxX4HmWU

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Pallbearer Tour Starts Tonight; “Dropout” Documentary Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 2nd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Arkansas doomers Pallbearer head out on a month-long tour tonight in the company of classic death metallers Obituary, darkthrashers Skeletonwitch and Dust Bolt. They’ve got dates booked as well for July and August — yes, they’ll be at Psycho Las Vegas — as they continue to support last year’s Heartless (review here) full-length, and a new single issued through the Adult Swim Singles Program called “Dropout” that pushes them into some new and surprisingly psychedelic sonic territory.

Not that Pallbearer‘s tones haven’t always been spacious, just that they’ve never been used in quite this way. Could be a one-off or could be portentous of future stylistic evolution, but the song is cool either way and the band have a short documentary up about its making that you can see below. No reason not to get on that.

From the PR wire:

pallbearer (Photo by Diana Lee Zadlo)

Ruminant progressive doom quartet Pallbearer recently premiered a new track entitled ‘Dropout’ as the 53rd installment of the Adult Swim Singles Program. The song, which is available digitally, represents a subtle expansion of the singular doom-prog metal sound the quartet is known for.

To coincide with this release, the band have also made an accompanying mini documentary which gives a behind the scenes look at the recording of ‘Dropout’ – recorded at Fellowship Hall Sound in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Pallbearer comments on the single: “We have almost always written music intended to exist as part of an album, with common musical and lyrical threads that tie many elements together into one release. Being freed from those confines in recording this song allowed us to explore themes and immediacy that might not have been uncovered in our more typical “large format” composition process.”

Pallbearer are undoubtedly road warriors, and they will continue to uphold that titled with their forthcoming North American tour dates. Along with a freshly announced batch of headlining gigs, the group is gearing up to support Obituary on an expansive U.S. tour in the coming month.

PALLBEARER, ON TOUR:
May 2 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade *
May 3 Greensboro, NC @ The Blind Tiger *
May 4 Philadelphia, PA @ Theatre of Living Arts *
May 5 New York, NY @ Gramercy Theatre *
May 6 Boston, MA @ Sinclair *
May 8 Toronto, ON @ Opera House *
May 9 Montreal, QB @ Club Soda *
May 10 Rochester, NY @ Main Street Armory *
May 11 Cleveland, OH @ Agora Ballroom *
May 12 Detroit, MI @ Majestic *
May 13 Chicago, IL @ Metro *
May 15 Des Moines, IA @ Wooly’s *
May 16 Omaha, NE @ Waiting Room *
May 18 Denver, CO @ Gothic Theatre *
May 19 Salt Lake City, UT @ Metro Music Hall *
May 21 Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre *
May 22 Seattle, WA @ El Corazon *
May 23 Vancouver, BC @ Rickshaw Theatre *
May 25 San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge *
May 26 Pomona, CA @ Glasshouse *
May 27 Phoenix, AZ @ Club Red *
May 29 Austin, TX @ Barracuda *
May 30 Dallas, TX @ Gas Monkey Bar & Grill *
May 31 Houston, TX @ Scout Bar *
Jun 1 Pensacola, FL @ Vinyl Music Hall *
Jun 2 Orlando, FL @ The Haven Lounge *
Jun 3 Miami, FL @ The Ground *
Jun 17 Little Rock, AR @ Mutants of the Monster Festival
June 22 Tulsa, OK @ Guthrie Green
July 26 Hamden, CT @ The Space
July 27 Syracuse, NY @ Lost Horizon
July 28 Montreal, QC @ Heavy Montreal
July 29 Bangor, ME @ Impact Festival
July 30 Brooklyn, NY @ Saint Vitus +
July 31 Amityville, NY @ Amityville Music Hall
Aug 18 Las Vegas, NV @ Psycho Las Vegas
Oct 13 San Bernardino, CA @ Glen Helen Amphitheater ^

* w/ Obituary, Skeletonwitch, Dust Bolt
^ w/ System Of A Down, Incubus
+ Kerrang! presents

PALLBEARER is:
Brett Campbell | lead vocals, electric & acoustic guitars, synthesizers
Devin Holt | electric & acoustic guitars, vocals
Joseph D. Rowland | electric bass, vocals, synthesizers
Mark Lierly | percussion

Pallbearer, “Dropout”

Pallbearer, The Making of “Dropout”

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Sumokem Premiere “Ogama” from The Guardian of Yosemite; Announce Signing to Cursed Tongue Records

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on October 4th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

SUMOKEM

This Friday, Little Rock, Arkansas, sludge-doomers celebrate the release of their sophomore full-length, The Guardian of Yosemite, at a hometown show at The Rev Room with Napalm Christ, Auric and Headcold. Before they even get there, however, the four-piece announce today that they’ve inked a deal for a vinyl issue for the album through Cursed Tongue Records. Booking your next release before the first release party? I think once you get a load of the track “Ogama” below, you might come to understand how that kind of thing can happen.

Sumokem make short work of a number of different genre barriers throughout the seven-song offering — the digital version of which pushes into eight tracks/61 minutes when one adds the bonus cover of Thin Lizzy’s “Emerald” — and from opener “Attack of the Mammoth,” there’s little between epic metal, doom and sludge that isn’t in their grasp. Grooves unfold fluidly from the outset, and as “Warning” is the shortest inclusion at just under seven minutes, there’s plenty of time for them to do so. CT from Rwake steps in for a guest spot on “War Pipe / Rite of the Calumet,” which adds bite and allows “Ogama” to earn its place as the centerpiece of the album proper with its gracefully progressive rollout offering a melodic highlight even with a peaceful stretch between onslaughts still to come in “Tisayac,” a soaring crescendo of lead guitar in “Mescalito / Meeting of the Half Moon” and a resolved post-Pallbearer expressiveness in 10-minute closer “Nantucket.” There are twists and turns a-plenty even before Sumokem get around to thickening up a classic Phil Lynott progression, and though one wonders how they might all fit on a 12″ platter, there’s no doubt as to the worthiness of the cause.

Speaking of: next Spring has been set as the ballpark release date for Cursed Tongue‘s vinyl. The label sent over the following announcement about picking up the band and provided further background, which you can see below, as well as the cover art by Adam Burke, track and lineup info, and links to the release show’s event page and more besides — as well of course as the premiere of “Ogama” itself, which I hope you enjoy.

So yeah. Enjoy:

sumokem-the-guardian-of-yosemite

SUMOKEM SIGNS TO CURSED TONGUE RECORDS FOR WORLD WIDE RELEASE OF ‘THE GUARDIAN OF YOSEMITE’

It’s with utmost pleasure that we can reveal the signing of Little Rock, Arkansas progressive sludge/doom rock titans in SUMOKEM. Follower of Cursed Tongue Records will find it of little surprise to see this collaboration as we hold this band in really high regard and are long time fans of this unique and hard hitting doom metal ensemble. Ever since the digital release of The Madness Of Lung Shen Ti: Vol 1 back in early 2015 we have been keeping a watchful eye out for this band as we new instantly that they would have the format and ideas to take it far and high.

This is exactly what SUMOKEM have done with The Guardian Of Yosemite, that in our opinion arm-wrestles with all the worn-out, tried-to-death, conformist monotony that most modern doom and stoner releases these days suffer from. SUMOKEM serve up seven mammoth sized tracks drawing from influences ranging from sludge rock, death metal, classic doom, progressive metal and grunge. How is that even possible you may ask, well it’s been quite some time since we have laid ears to such a vast and complex album both musically and emotionally. Especially emotions and feelings is something that The Guardian Of Yosemite is strong on – you can literally feel the story told on this conceptual album.

We recommend The Guardian of Yosemite to all stoner and doom heads that want their music to stand out from the normal and who are willing to invest time in a more demanding album that in return will pay you back with hours and hours of unwaning musical bliss. Fans of Pallbearer, Khemmis and Yob will find plenty to enjoy here, but rest a sure this band can not be confined within the realm of these comparisons.

SUMOKEM was founded by vocalist/rhythm guitarist Jacob Sawrie in January of 2013, with Josh Ingram (lead guitar) and Drew Skarda (drums), later adding Alan Wells (Shitfire, Napalm Christ) on bass guitar.

SUMOKEM have released a digital single as part of the Mutants of the Monster/Handshake Inc/Alternative Tentacles 2013/2014 Compilation, as well The Madness of Lu Shen Ti: Vol. 1 EP on Handshake, Inc, and received attention from Steel for Brains, Meat Mead & Metal, and Gaffa Magazine (Sweden).

Founding lead guitarist Josh Ingram passed away on May 9, 2015. Shortly after, SUMOKEM parted ways with Alan Wells. In June 2015, Tyler Weaver and Dustin Weddle (Snakedriver/Seahag) joined the band, and SUOMEKM are now ready to drop their first full length, The Guardian of Yosemite, on the unprepared World. The album is set to release digitally and on CD October 6th, 2017 with a full blown 2LP vinyl worldwide release slated for early spring 2018 via Cursed Tongue Records.

CTR-006, SUMOKEM – The Guardian Of Yosemite, official release date: Spring 2018

The Guardian of Yosemite is dedicated to Josh Ingram.

SUMOKEM is:
Jacob Sawrie – Rhythm/Vox
Drew Skarda – Percussion
Tyler Weaver – Lead
Dustin Weddle – Bass

Engineered/Mixed by Mark Colbert at Fellowship Hall Sound and Capitol View Studios
Mastered by Brad Boatright at AUDIOSIEGE
Cover art by Adam Burke
Guest vocals on War Pipe by C.T. (Rwake)
Music and Lyrics by Sawrie
All songs arranged by SUMOKEM

Track listing:
1. Attack of the Mammoth
2. Warning
3. War Pipe/Rite of the Calumet
4. Ogama
5. Tisayac
6. Mescalito/Meeting of the Half-Moon
7. Nantucket

https://www.facebook.com/events/124466121507962/
https://sumokem.bandcamp.com/album/the-guardian-of-yosemite
https://www.facebook.com/SUMOKEM/
https://www.facebook.com/CursedTongueRecords/
https://www.instagram.com/cursedtongue
http://cursedtonguerecords.bigcartel.com/

Sumokem, “Ogama” official premiere

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Pallbearer Announce Headlining West Coast and Midwest Tour

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 4th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Arkansas doom forerunners Pallbearer begin a European tour tomorrow supporting their new album, Heartless (review here). That tour will culminate with a stop April 23 at Roadburn 2017 in Tilburg, the Netherlands, and the band will follow it with a US headlining run. You can go ahead and be surprised by this news if you want, but frankly, Pallbearer touring is about as shocking as the sun coming up and going back down. It happens, is what I’m saying. Dudes get around.

The difference? Well, to see the band headline in spaces like Union Transfer in Philly — last time I was there, it was to see High on Fire — is something that shows how far they’ve come in moving to the head of the class in the current generation of doom, and they’re certainly showing some range in the bands with whom they’re sharing the stage. I took the dates out because they already happened, but in addition to the acts listed below, they recently did some shows with Marissa Nadler and others in the Midwest and on the Eastern Seaboard.

You know what I enjoy? Seeing a good band who work really hard get popular and then continue to work really hard.

From the PR wire:

pallbearer

PALLBEARER ANNOUNCE U.S. HEADLINE TOUR IN MAY & JUNE 2017

In support of their newly released magnum opus Heartless, genre-defying giants Pallbearer will canvas North America in May and June on a headline tour featuring support from Gatecreeper, Pinkish Black, Venomous Maximum, and Inter Arma on select dates. This run will follow Pallbearer’s late-March U.S. jaunt and their forthcoming European tour in April. Pallbearer’s full tour routing can be found below.

Released last Friday on Profound Lore in North America (and Nuclear Blast in Europe), Heartless is a 7-song album grander in scope than anything Pallbearer have released prior, showcasing a natural progression that melds higher technicality and more ambitious structures. Heartless was recorded straight-to-tape with Joe Barresi (Queens of the Stone Age, Tool, Melvins, Soundgarden) manning the board, making for the band’s most pummeling, ambitious, and virtuosic work to date.

“Instead of staring into to the void—both above and within—Heartless concentrates its power on a grim reality,” the band explains. “Our lives, our homes and our world are all plumbing the depths of utter darkness, as we seek to find any shred of hope we can.”

See Pallbearer on the road through June 2017:
April 5 Brussels, Belgium @ Botanique !
April 6 London, UK @ Underworld !
April 8 Bristol, UK @ Thekla !
April 9 Manchester, UK @ Ruby Lounge !
April 11 Hamburg, Germany @ Hafenklang !
April 12 Goteborg, Sweden @ Sticky Fingers !
April 13 Stockholm, Sweden @ Kraken STHLM !
April 14 Aarhus, Denmark @ Atlas !
April 15 Copenhagen, Denmark @ Pumpehuset !
April 16 Hanover, Germany @ Cafe Glocksee !
April 18 Köln, Germany @ Underground !
April 19 Berlin, Germany @ Musik & Frieden
April 20 Leipzig, Germany @ Doom Over Leipzig
April 21 Zurich, Switzerland @ Rote Fabrik
April 22 Karlsruhe, Germany @ Dudefest
April 23 Tilburg, Netherlands @ Roadburn
May 11 Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live — Studio ^
May 12 Dallas, TX @ Curtain Club ^
May 13 Austin, TX @ Barracuda ^
May 15 Phoenix AZ @ The Rebel Lounge %
May 16 San Diego, CA @ Casbah #
May 18 Los Angeles, CA @ The EchoPlex #
May 19 Oakland, CA @ The New Parish #
May 20 Reno, NV @ Jub Jub’s Thirst Parlor #
May 22 Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge #
May 23 Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater #
May 25 Kansas City, MO @ The Riot Room ^^
May 26 Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry ^^
May 27 Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews ^^
May 28 Madison, WI @ High Noon Saloon ^^
May 30 Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups ^^
May 31 Pittsburgh, PA @ Rex Theater ^^
June 1 Washington, DC @ Rock and Roll Hotel ^^
June 2 Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer **
June 5 Harrisonburg, VA @ The Gameolden Pony ^^
June 6 Louisville, KY @ Zanzabar ^^
June 7 St. Louis, MO @ Fubar ^^

! w/ Pinkish Black
^ w/ Gatecreeper, Pinkish Black
% w/ Gatecreeper, Spirit Adrift
# w/ Gatecreeper, Venomous Maximus
^^ w/ Gatecreeper, Inter Arma
** w/ Baroness, Nothing

Pallbearer is:
Brett Campbell – guitar, vocals
Devin Holt – guitar, vocals
Mark Lierly – drums
Joseph D. Rowland – bass, vocals

https://www.facebook.com/pallbearerdoom
https://twitter.com/pallbearerdoom
https://instagram.com/pallbearerdoom/
https://www.profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/

Pallbearer, “I Saw the End” official video

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Quarterly Review: Pallbearer, Dread Sovereign, Lizzard Wizzard, Oulu Space Jam Collective, Frozen Planet….1969, Ananda Mida, Strange Broue, Orango, Set and Setting, Dautha

Posted in Reviews on March 27th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

cropped-Charles-Meryon-Labside-Notre-Dame-1854

Here we are, on the precipice looking out over a spread that will include 50 reviews by the week’s end. Somehow when it comes around to a Quarterly Review Monday I always end up taking a moment to ask myself if I’ve truly lost my mind, if I really expect to be able to do this and not fall completely flat on my face, and just where the hell this terrible idea came from in the first place. But you know what? I haven’t flubbed one yet. We get through it. There’s a lot to go through, for me and you both, but sometimes it’s fun to be completely overwhelmed by music. I hope you agree, and I hope you find something this week that hits you in that oh-yeah-that’s-why-I-love-this kind of way. Time’s wasting. Let’s get started.

Quarterly Review #1-10:

Pallbearer, Heartless

pallbearer heartless

Three albums and nearly a decade into their tenure, Pallbearer stand at the forefront of American doom, and their third outing, Heartless (on Profound Lore), only reinforces this position while at the same time expanding beyond genre lines in ways that even their 2014 sophomore effort, Foundations of Burden, simply couldn’t have done. A seven-song/hour-long sprawl is marked out by resonant melodies, soulful melancholy conveyed by guitarist/vocalist Brett Campbell – the returning lineup completed by guitarist Devin Holt, bassist Joseph D. Rowland and drummer Mark Lierly – and tonal weight set to a mix by Joe Barresi, who from opener “I Saw the End” onward arranges layers gorgeously so that extended pieces like “Dancing in Madness” (11:48) and closer “A Plea for Understanding” (12:40) become even more consuming. What comes through most resolute on Heartless, though, is that it’s time to stop thinking of Pallbearer as belonging to some established notion of doom or any other subgenre. With these songs, they make it clear they’ve arrived at their own wavelength and are ready to stand up to the influence they’ve already begun to have on other acts. A significant achievement.

Pallbearer on Thee Facebooks

Profound Lore Records website

 

Dread Sovereign, For Doom the Bell Tolls

dread-sovereign-for-doom-the-bell-tolls

With the considerable frontman presence of Primordial’s Alan Averill on vocals and bass, the considerable riffing of guitarist Bones (also of Wizards of Firetop Mountain) and the considerable lumber in the drumming of Johnny King (ex-Altar of Plagues), Dread Sovereign make some considerable fucking doom indeed. Their second album, For Doom the Bell Tolls (on Ván Records), follows three years behind their debut, 2014’s All Hell’s Martyrs (review here), and wastes no time giving the devil his due – or his doom, if you prefer – in the span of its six tracks and 37 minutes. Atmospheric and seemingly on an endless downward plod, the 13-minute “Twelve Bells Toll in Salem” is a defining moment, but the trad metallurgy of “This World is Doomed” rounds out side A with some welcome thrust, and after the intro “Draped in Sepulchral Fog,” “The Spines of Saturn” and the thrashing “Live Like and Angel, Die Like a Devil” play dramatic and furious intensities off each other in a manner that would seem to truly represent the fine art of not giving a shit what anyone thinks about what you do or what box you’re supposed to fit into. Righteous. Considerably so.

Dread Sovereign on Thee Facebooks

Ván Records website

 

Lizzard Wizzard, Total War Power Bastard

lizzard-wizzard-total-war-power-bastard

Noise, largesse of riffs and shouted vocals that distinctly remind of Souls at Zero-era Neurosis pervade the near-hour-long run of Lizzard Wizzard’s Total War Power Bastard, but as much as the Brisbane four-piece willfully give themselves over to fuckall – to wit, the title “Medusa but She Gets You Stoned Instead of Turning You to Stone, Instead of Snakes She has Vaporizers on His Head… Drugs” – songs like “Shithead Nihilism,” “Pizza” and the droning “Snake Arrow” brim with purpose and prove affecting in their atmosphere and heft alike. Yes, they have a song called “Nerd Smasher,” and they deserve all credit for that as they follow-up their 2013 self-titled (review here), but by the time they get down to the roll-happy “Crystal Balls” and the feedback-caked “Megaflora” at the record’s end, guitarists Michael Clarke and Nick McKeon, bassist Stef Roselli and drummer Luke Osborne end up having done something original with a Sleep influence, and that’s even more commendable.

Lizzard Wizzard on Thee Facebooks

Lizzard Wizzard on Bandcamp

 

Oulu Space Jam Collective, EP1

Oulu-Space-Jam-Collective-ep1

Should mention two things outright about Oulu Space Jam Collective’s EP1. First and foremost, its three songs run over 95 minutes long, so if it’s an EP, one can only imagine what qualifies as a “full-length.” Second, the Finnish outfit releasing EP1 on limited tape through Eggs in Aspic isn’t to be confused with Denmark’s Øresund Space Collective. Oulu is someplace else entirely, and likewise, Oulu Space Jam Collective have their own intentions as they show in the 57-minute opener “Renegade Spaceman,” recorded live in the studio in 2014 (they’ve since made two sequels) and presented in six movements including samples, drones, enough swirl for, well, 57 minutes, and a hypnotism that’s nigh on inescapable. I won’t take away from the space rock thrust of 14-minute closer “Artistic Supplies for Moon Paint Mafia” (also tracked in 2014), but the smooth progressive edge of three-part 24-minute centerpiece “Approaching Beast Moon of Baxool” is where it’s at for me – though if you want a whole galaxy to explore, hit up their Bandcamp.

Oulu Space Jam Collective on Thee Facebooks

Eggs in Aspic webstore

 

Frozen Planet…. 1969, Electric Smokehouse

frozen-planet-1969-electric-smokehouse

They freak out a bit toward the end of 12-minute opener “Ascendant” and in the second half of the subsequent “Supersaturation,” but for the most part, Aussie three-piece Frozen Planet…. 1969 play it weirdo-cool on their fourth full-length, the excellently-titled Electric Smokehouse (on Pepper Shaker Records). From those jams to the dreamy beachside drift of “Shores of Oblivion” to the funky-fuzz bass of “Sonic Egg Factory” to the quick noise finish of “Pretty Blown Fuse” – which may or may not be the sound of malfunctioning equipment run through an oscillator or some other effects-whatnot, the instrumentalist Sydney/Canberra trio seem to improv a healthy percentage of their fare, if not all of it, and that spirit of spontaneity feeds into the easygoing atmosphere only enhanced by the cover art. On a superficial level, you know you’re getting psych jams going into it, but once you put on Electric Smokehouse, the urge to get lost in the tracks is nigh on overwhelming, and that proves greatly to their credit. Wake up someplace else.

Frozen Planet…. 1969 on Thee Facebooks

Pepper Shaker Records on Bandcamp

 

Ananda Mida, Anodnatius

ananda-mida-anodnatius

Ananda Mida make their debut on Go Down Records with Anodnatius, fluidly working their way around heavy psychedelic and more driving rock influences propelled by drummer Massimo “Max Ear” Recchia, also of underrated Italian forebears OJM. Here, Recchia anchors a seven-piece lineup including two vocalists in Oscar de Bertoldi and Filippo Leonardi, two guitarists in Matteo Scolaro and Alessandro Tedesco, as well as bassist Davide Bressan and organist Stefano Pasqualetto, so suffice it to say songs like the subtly grungy “Passvas,” the dreamy highlight “Heropas” or the vaguely progressive “Askokinn” want nothing for fullness, but there seem to be moments throughout Anodnatius as on “Lunia” and the shuffling “Kondur” early into the proceedings where the band wants to break out and push toward something heavier. Their restraint is to be commended since it serves the interests of songcraft, but part of me can’t help but wonder what might happen if these guys really let loose on some boogie jams. Keep an ear open to find out, as I have a feeling they might be headed in just that direction.

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Go Down Records website

 

Strange Broue, Seance

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The heart of Séance – The Satanic Sounds of Strange Broue might come in the 11-minute sample dump that is “Cults and Crimes,” late into the second half of the 52-minute album. Capturing meticulously compiled news and talk-show clips from the late ‘80s, some of which talk about the Satanic roots of heavy metal, it gets to the ritualism that Quebec four-piece Strange Broue proliferate elsewhere on the record in the lo-fi post-Electric Wizard doom of “Satan’s Slaves,” “Kill What’s Inside of You” and the rolling opener “Ritualize” (video here). These pieces offset by other interludes of noise and drone and samples like “Satanic Panic,” “In Nomine Dei Nostri Satanis, Luciferi Excelsis,” the acoustic-until-it-gets-shot-in-the-woods “Las Bas,” the John Carpenter-esque “Séance IV – L’Invocation” and the extended penultimate drone of “Séance V – The Mystifying Oracle with Bells” ahead of the countrified pop gospel of “Satan is Real,” which finishes in subversive fashion, interrupted by more news reports and a finishing assault of noise. Like an arts project in the dark arts, Séance crosses some familiar terrain but finds Strange Broue on their own trip through cultish immersion, as psychological as it is psychedelic.

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Orango, The Mules of Nana

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Not much to argue with in the sixth long-player from Helge Kanck, Trond Slåke and Hallvard Gaardløs, collectively known as Orango. As they make their way onto Stickman Records (which also handled Euro distro for their last album, 2014’s Battles) with The Mules of Nana, the Norwegian trio deep-dive into harmony-topped ‘70s-style vibing that, well, leaves the bulk of “retro” bands in their V8-crafted dust. Mind you they do so by not being a retro band. True, the fuzz on “The Honeymoon Song” and “Head on Down” is as organic as if you happened on it in some forest where all the trees were wearing bellbottoms, but if you told me it was true, I’d believe Orango recorded The Mules of Nana onto – gasp! – a computer. I don’t know if that’s the case or not, but “Heirs,” the sweetly acoustic “Give Me a Hundred” and motoring “Hazy Chain of Mountains” find Orango making no attempt to cloak a lack of songwriting or performance chops in a production aesthetic. Rather, in the tradition of hi-fi greats, they sound as full and rich as possible and utterly live up to the high standard they set for themselves. Pure win in classic, dynamic fashion.

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Stickman Records website

 

Set and Setting, Reflectionless

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There’s an undercurrent of metal that’s quick to show itself on Set and Setting’s Reflectionless. The instrumentalist Floridian five-piece delve plenty deep into heavy post-rock on cuts like the shoegazing “Incandescent Gleam” and subsequent “Specular Wavefront Of…” but they’re not through opener “Saudade” before harder-edged chug emerges, and “…The Idyllic Realm”’s blastbeating nods at black metal while the churning endgame build of closer “Ephemerality” holds tight to a progressive execution. While its textural foundation will likely ring familiar to followers of Russian Circles ultimately, Reflectionless finds distinction in aligning the various paths it walks as it goes, creating an overarching flow that draws strength from its diversity of approach rather than sounding choppy, confused or in conflict with itself. Not revolutionary by any means, but engaging throughout and with a residual warmth to complement what might seem at first to be a purely cerebral approach. It offers more on repeat listens, so let it sink in.

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Dautha, Den Foerste

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Primo short offering of pure, fistpump-ready, violin-infused doom traditionalism. I don’t know what Norrköping, Sweden’s Dautha – the five-piece of vocalist Lars Palmqvist, guitarists Erik Öquist and Ola Blomkvist, bassist Emil Åström and drummer Micael Zetterberg – are planning to do for a follow-up, but this Den Foerste (or Den Förste) two-tracker recalls glory-era Candlemass and willfully soars with no sense of irony on “Benandanti” and “In Between Two Floods” after the intro “Horkarlar Skall Slås Ihjäl,” and having already sold out a self-released pressing leaves little to wonder what would’ve caught the esteemed tastes of Ván Records. And by that I mean it’s fucking awesome. I’m ready for a full-length whenever they are, and from the poise with which Palmqvist carries the melodies of these tracks, the quality of the riffing and the depth of arrangement the violin adds to the overarching mournfulness, they definitely sound ready. So get on it. 15 minutes of dirge-making this gorgeous simply isn’t enough.

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Ván Records website

 

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Pallbearer Reveal Art and Track Details for Heartless

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 5th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

pallbearer diana lee zadlo

Particulars have begun to surface regarding Pallbearer‘s third album, Heartless. Art and tracks — you know the drill. First there was the album announcement last month, and now we have the cover and tracklisting. Soon audio premieres will start through the broader media websites, who’ll pad their underground cred by celebrating a doom band while exposing the Arkansas four-piece to a wider public; win-win. Let’s say three songs out one at a time and then a full-album stream? Then more tour dates once the record’s out March 24 via Profound Lore, because as ever, one can expect Pallbearer to bust their collective ass on the road, and maybe a video or something like that. Then tour tour tour and that’s how it is. Like I said, you know the drill. It’s the modern album cycle. Half of you are in one part of it or another, I’d wager.

And nothing against it. Pallbearer’s Heartless will no doubt be one of 2017’s biggest releases in doom and likely under the wider sphere of metal as a whole. They’re due for that kind of ascent. So only right it should be done up with maximum ceremony. The PR wire explains why:

pallbearer heartless

PALLBEARER UNVEIL DETAILS FOR THEIR HEARTLESS LP, DUE OUT MARCH 24th FROM PROFOUND LORE

Progressive doom giants Pallbearer have returned with their third album: a 7-song collection of monumental rock music titled Heartless, which will be released March 24th from Profound Lore in North America (in Europe from Nuclear Blast Entertainment). Pallbearer recorded Heartless on analog tape at Fellowship Hall Sound in their hometown of Little Rock, AR, and mixed it with Joe Barresi (Queens of the Stone Age, Tool, Melvins, Soundgarden) in summer of 2016. The end result is an album grander in scope than anything they’ve released prior, showcasing a natural progression that melds higher technicality and more ambitious structures with Pallbearer’s most immediate hooks to date.

On Heartless, Pallbearer offer a complex sonic architecture that weaves together the spacious exploratory elements of classic prog, the raw anthemics of 90’s alt-rock, and stretches of black-lit proto-metal. Lyrics about mortality, life, and love are set to sharp melodies and pristine three-part harmonies. Vocalist and guitarist Brett Campbell has always been a strong, assured singer, and on Heartless, his work is especially stunning. Written by Campbell and bassist/secondary vocalist Joseph D Rowland, the words have moved from the metaphysical to something more grounded. As the group explains: “Instead of staring into to the void—both above and within—Heartless concentrates its power on a grim reality. Our lives, our homes and our world are all plumbing the depths of utter darkness, as we seek to find any shred of hope we can.”

By fusing their widest musical palette to date, Pallbearer make the kind of heavy rock that will appeal to diehards, but could also find the group crossing over into newer territories and fanbases. After having helped revitalize doom metal, it almost feels like they’ve gone and set their sights on rock and roll itself. Which doesn’t seem at all impossible on the back of a record like Heartless.

See Pallbearer on tour in support of Heartless in February and March (dates below with more to surface) and look for song premieres, pre-orders and more information from Profound Lore to be posted soon.

Heartless, track listing:
1. I Saw the End
2. Thorns
3. Lie of Survival
4. Dancing in Madness
5. Cruel Road
6. Heartless
7. A Plea for Understanding

Pallbearer is:
Brett Campbell – guitar, vocals
Devin Holt – guitar, vocals
Mark Lierly – drums
Joseph D. Rowland – bass, vocals

PALLBEARER, ON TOUR:
February 25 Austin, TX @ Barracuda *
March 22 Little Rock, AR @ Revolution Music Room
March 23 Nashville, TN @ The End
March 25 Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
March 28 Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
March 29 Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme
March 31 Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall
* w/ The Crazy World of Arthur Brown

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https://twitter.com/pallbearerdoom
https://instagram.com/pallbearerdoom/
https://www.profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/

Pallbearer, Fear and Fury EP (2016)

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Pallbearer Announce New Album Heartless Due in March

Posted in Whathaveyou on December 19th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

Of all the surprises the universe might bestow on a given day, Pallbearer announcing a round of tour dates is probably pretty low on the scale of absolute shockers. They tour a lot. They’ve toured a lot since their second album, Foundations of Burden, came out in 2014, and they toured a lot for the preceding 2012 debut, Sorrow and Extinction (review here). It’s just what they do.

Perhaps more of a newsly morsel is that a third album is impending. Titled Heartless, it’s due in March and follows an EP released earlier this year also through Profound Lore called Fear and Fury (discussed here) that boasted covers of Dio-era Black Sabbath and Type O Negative back to back — just in case you weren’t sure they were up for a bold decision or two.

The limited album info and the tour dates around the release follow. Note that in February they’ll also be playing with The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, which seems worth a trip to Austin if anything ever was:

pallbearer diana lee zadlo

PALLBEARER RETURN WITH NEW ALBUM, ANNOUNCE TOUR DATES

Their third full-length album, Heartless, due out in March from Profound Lore Records

Pallbearer recently announced their third full-length album, Heartless, which is due out in March 2017 via longtime label partner Profound Lore. In conjunction with the album’s release, Pallbearer will headline a string of shows in March; kicking off in their hometown of Little Rock, then heading to Nashville, Brooklyn, Cleveland, Grand Rapids and Chicago. These shows are the first since Pallbearer’s extensive U.S. tour alongside Baroness last fall – check out the full list of dates below.

PALLBEARER, ON TOUR:
February 25 Austin, TX @ Barracuda *
March 22 Little Rock, AR @ Revolution Music Room
March 23 Nashville, TN @ The End
March 25 Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
March 28 Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
March 29 Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme
March 31 Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall
* w/ The Crazy World of Arthur Brown

https://www.facebook.com/pallbearerdoom
https://twitter.com/pallbearerdoom
https://instagram.com/pallbearerdoom/
https://www.profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.com/
https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/

Pallbearer, Fear and Fury EP (2016)

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