Orange Goblin Begin Recording New Album

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 19th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

UK stalwarts Orange Goblin have entered Orgone Studios in London with producer Jaime Gomez Arellano at the helm to begin tracking their ninth full-length. Presumably set for release later this year, what will be an awaited follow-up to 2014’s Back from the Abyss (review here) also marks a significant turn for the four-piece of vocalist Ben Ward, guitarist Joe Hoare, bassist Martyn Millard and drummer Chris Turner in being their first offering to be issued through Spinefarm Records, which signed them in 2016.

Though its been four years since their last offering arrived, Orange Goblin have hardly rested in that time. In addition to a complete touring cycle, they could still be found supporting Back from the Abyss last year at festivals like SonicBlast Moledo, Up in Smoke 2017, Desertfest Athens 2017 and, in their only US appearance, Ozzfest Meets Knotfest last Fall in California. Their influence having expanded greatly in their native England and well beyond, anticipation will no doubt be high when it comes to hearing what they bring to their next collection of material. I know I’m looking forward to it, to put it mildly.

In that regard, the choice of Arellano as producer is particularly striking. His metal pedigree is long and storied in producing, engineering and mastering, but recent years have found him directly associated with the output of Rise Above Records and groups like With the Dead, Ghost, Death Penalty and The Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell. Of course, Orange Goblin have their history with releases through Rise Above as well, and Arellano has also recently sat behind the board on records for Sólstafir and Paradise Lost, but his involvement adds another level of intrigue to what’s in store with the new Orange Goblin LP when it arrives.

The band marked the occasion of arriving at the studio by posting a couple pictures and a quick update on the social medias, which you’ll find below. More to come:

orange goblin

It begins! Day one of recording album #9 at Orgone Studios with Jaime Gomez Arellano (Grave Pleasures, Paradise Lost, Ghost, Cathedral etc..) We are very excited about this one!!

https://www.facebook.com/orangegoblinofficial/
https://twitter.com/OrangeGoblin1
https://www.instagram.com/orangegoblin1/
http://www.orange-goblin.com/
https://www.facebook.com/spinefarm
www.spinefarmrecords.com/

Orange Goblin, Live at Desertfest Athens 2017

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Desertfest London 2018 Adds Second Weedeater Set, Primitive Man, Suma, Bison, Bismuth and Moloch to Lineup

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 16th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Not that Desertfest London 2018 wasn’t already plenty heavy — I mean, fucking Napalm Death are playing — but pretty much anytime you add Suma and Primitive Man to anything, you’re going to jump into a different weight class entirely when it comes to tone. The Swedish noise-bludgeoners and Denver’s most wanted aggressors are just two of the six acts confirmed for this year’s Human Disease Promo / When Planets Collide stage, which is traditionally where one finds some of Desertfest London’s most vicious and brutal fare. It would seem 2018 is no different in this regard.

Oh, and Weedeater topping it all off with a set specifically comprised of early material? Nice touch. No way in hell that’s going to be anything other than a good time.

From the Desertfest site:

desertfest london 2018 human disease promo when planets collide stage

WEEDEATER, PRIMITIVE MAN AND MORE FOR HUMAN_DISEASE_PROMO / WHEN PLANETS COLLIDE STAGE!

Yet again, we’ve got our good friends from Human_Disease_Promo and When Planets Collide rolling in with their annual heavy stage. As ever, they’ll be delivering a slab of pure brutality this year bringing 6 new bands to the bill as well as a special second set from the previously announced Weedeater. Staggerin’ Matt tells us more about what to expect at The Underworld on Sunday 6th May below.

“This year we’ve gone for an all out colossus of weighty heaviness for the Human_Disease_Promo / When Planets Collide Stage at Desertfest 2018.

Along to top proceedings we have North Carolina reefer riff rascals Weedeater coming in for a special set – their second appearance of the weekend – heading up the Underworld to play a packed bowl of tracks from the earliest strains of their career. It’s gonna be a low down dirty hoot.

Backing them up will be the obscenely punishing, abrasive blows of Denver’s most crushing Primitive Man, stomping and hard driving riffs from Canadian bruisers Bison, a lush hammering pysche vortex in the form of Swedish outfit Suma, joining from St. Louis, the engulfing intensity of destructive filthsters Fister, Nottingham D.I.Y. downers / viscous sludge nasties Moloch and the gigantic cavernous rumblings of UK duo Bismuth.

All said it’s likely the heaviest lineup we’ve ever forged together for the Underworld to bear witness to, so come join us all day on the Sunday to have ya brain fried up and handed back as a pile of stewed mush! It’s gonna be bloody loud in there!”

With this latest set of additions to Desertfest 2018 and more still to come, on top of the dozens of great bands already announced, this year’s heavy weekender looks to bigger than ever. Don’t miss your chance to be at the UK’s premier underground festival. Book your tickets today.

Desertfest London 2018
4th-6th May in Camden Town, London
3-day pass (£115) now on sale AT THIS LOCATION

Our special split payment plan is available until December 12th!
Pay half of your ticket now and the other half in January. Find more info HERE.

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https://www.facebook.com/DesertfestLondon
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Weedeater, Live at Desertfest London 2014

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The Wizards of Delight Self-Titled EP out Jan. 22

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 12th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

the wizards of delight

Yeah, was there really any way The Wizards of Delight were going to be anything other than a completely over the top heavy metal good time? If you said something along the lines of, “Well, probably not,” go ahead and give yourself a point. The new band fronted by Andreas Mazzereth from Groan begin their debut EP in a misty morning with “Gypsy” and wrap it up with a “Shogun Messiah” who does not welcome peace, and naturally that’s only scratching the surface of the shenanigans on display throughout the four-tracker, which APF Records will issue in a digipak on Jan. 22. I don’t mind telling you I want one. One listen to “We Got the Rock ‘n’ Rollz” and you might too.

To the PR wire:

the wizards of delight the wizards of delight

The Wizards of Delight – Out on Digipak Compact Disc 22nd January 2018

It’s about time we had some proper rock stars on APF Records. Following on from their appearance on the cover CD of Classic Rock Magazine in October, all hail then majestic rock warriors The Wizards of Delight.

Thrusting out a hotbed of gloriously parping and exultant riffs this mega-group features Andreas Mazzereth, the aesthetically pleasing lead vocalist of legendary party-doom outfit Groan (which also features Leigh “Riff Rock” Jones and Linz Eel and Zel Baterista of Vodun) and a band of dazzling musical sorcerers playing a mix of grand psychedelia, acid-fried funk, big fuzzy glam, and stoner groove – all from a whirlwind of capes, synths, fit guitars and resonant good vibes.

Inspired by the likes of Black Sabbath, Van Halen, Yes, The Stooges, David Coverdale, Led Zep and Sly Stone, this is but the first salvo from a burgeoning canon of cock (sic). If Deep Purple, Dio and all things 1970s ring your bell, The Wizards are ready to entertain you. Plant your tongue firmly in your cheek and enjoy the melee.

THE WIZARDS OF DELIGHT ARE:
Andreas Mazzereth – lead vocals
Lenny Ray – lead guitar, backing vocals
Don Green’s Myth – rhythm guitar, backing vocals, percussion
Eponymous – bass guitar, backing vocals
Henry (Henry) Henry – bass, backing vocals
Reece – drums

Produced by The Wizards of Delight
All songs by The Wizards of Delight, except “Gypsy” by Ratz Ass
Recorded at Joe’s Garage Studio, Bristol. Additional Recording at Aerial Studios, Carmarthen
Engineered by Joe Garcia
Mixed by Tim Lewis at Aerial Studios
Mastered by Martin Nichols at White House Recording Studios, Weston Super Mare

https://thewizardsofdelight.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/The.Wizards.Of.Delight/
https://www.facebook.com/apfrecords
https://twitter.com/apf_records
https://apfrecords.bandcamp.com/
http://www.apfrecords.co.uk

The Wizards of Delight, The Wizards of Delight (2018)

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Quarterly Review: Gruntruck, The Dead Ends, Albatross Overdrive, High Priestess, Monolith Cult, Kayleth & Favequaid, Black Wail, Psychic Lemon, Ixion, Rattlesnake

Posted in Reviews on January 10th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Lodewijk de Vadder (1605-1655) - 17th Century Etching, Landscape with Two Farms

Day Three of the Quarterly Review! I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling great. Plowing through, hearing a ton of good stuff. The week is rolling and though it’s most definitely caused me to be a neglectful husband and father for the last 72 hours (so far!), at very least the music is killer. That’s something, right? I didn’t really have a theme in picking today’s batch, but there are some commonalities between some of the inclusions all the same. See if you can find them, like one of those old puzzles in a Highlights magazine in your orthodontist’s wood-paneled office. Ready? Okay, let’s go.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Gruntruck, Gruntruck

gruntruck-gruntruck

Held back due to legal issues with their original label, Roadrunner, the self-titled third album from Seattle groove-grungers Gruntruck hits like an open time-capsule nearly two decades after the fact of its recording: a little dusty but full of vitality and potential for what could’ve been. With a tad more crunch than the likes of Soundgarden and a crunch less TAD than TAD, Gruntruck found a middle-space between the melodies of their age and scene and heavier impulses, and if songs like “Trip,” the post-Nirvana “Build a Hole,” and the later “Spy” sound dated, well, they should. They are dated. It’s an album that was recorded over 20 years ago. That does nothing to take away from the quality of the songwriting, however, as closer “Flang” shows by demonstrating how thin the line between grunge and heavy rock has always been in the first place, let alone how fluidly Gruntruck were able to cross from one side to the other.

Gruntruck on Thee Facebooks

Found Recordings website

 

The Dead Ends, Deeper the Dark the Brighter We Shine

the-dead-ends-deeper-the-dark-the-brighter-we-shine

This warm and psychedelically charmed debut from Kavala, Greece’s The Dead Ends works quickly to deliver its cumbersome title-line in opener “Memory Ship (Sails at Dawn)” amid a build of organ-laced Doors-style drama, but the overarching spirit of the Sound Effect Records release is nonetheless patient and fluid. The keyboard work of vocalist Giorgos Sechlidis proves to be a major standout factor on the playful “Narri-E Narri-O” as rhythms and melodic elements out of Greek folk rear their head, and as guitarist Serios Savvaidis and drummer Dimitris Apostolidis provide vocal support throughout, the nine tracks of Deeper the Dark, the Brighter We Shine envelop with a depth that corresponds to their outward reach, still based around pop structures practically and conceptually, but feeling open and resolved to remain that way all the same. The jangly “Peter 2:18” closes out by building into a melodic wash, as if to underscore the potential within this exciting outfit’s budding stylistic nuance.

The Dead Ends on Thee Facebooks

Sound Effect Records website

 

Albatross Overdrive, Keep it Running

albatross-overdrive-keep-it-running

Issued in 2016, Albatross Overdrive’s second full-length pulls together a sans-pretense 31 minutes of barroom-style heavy rock born of the California desert but not necessarily indebted solely to its aesthetic so much as to boozy swing and chug and meaner, engine-revving impulses. “Fire Dancer” and “Higher” make impressions early with catchy choruses and hard-delivered riffs, a touch of metal to the latter particularly, and the later “Preaching Love Not War” boasts a highlight performance from bassist Mark Abshire, formerly of Fu Manchu, while gritty vocalist Art Campos leads the five-piece – completed by guitarists Andrew Luddy and Derek Phillips and drummer Rodney Peralta – through the grunge-chug of “Earth Mother,” recalling Alice in Chains’ “Again” in its cadence momentarily, though ultimately driven along its own course, headed into closer “Neva,” which finishes the album in top form just as it might cap a raucous live set on any given and much-improved Friday evening.

Albatross Overdrive on Thee Facebooks

Albatross Overdrive website

 

High Priestess, Demo

high-priestess-demo

Los Angeles trio High Priestess were recently snagged by Ripple Music for the release of their impending debut album this year, and on the strength of this five-track demo, one could hardly argue. Tonally rich, perfectly paced in its rollout, melodically centered and meditative with surprising flashes of metallic noise, cuts like 10-minute opener and longest track (immediate points) “Firefly” offer psychedelic immersion and a sense of worldmaking rare in a band’s first long-player, let alone their initial demo. Weighted low end gives Demo an earthy sensibility, and there’s definitely a desert-style aspect to “Take the Blame” and “Mother Forgive Me,” but the intertwining vocal melodies of guitarist/organist Katie Gilchrest and bassist Mariana Fiel atop Megan Mullins’ drums provide a spaciousness well across the line of transcendent into ethereal psychedelia. Likewise, after the salvo of “Firefly” and its nine-minute companion “Despise,” the peaceful, organ-laced closer “Earth Dive” draws emphasis on sonic diversity with its patient build and underlying command. Especially as demos go, High Priestess’ is dangerously coherent.

High Priestess on Thee Facebooks

High Priestess on Instagram

 

Monolith Cult, Gospel of Despair

monolith-cult-gospel-of-despair

From the first listen onward, the hardest thing about putting on Monolith Cult’s second full-length, Gospel of Despair, is actually letting the seven tracks play without constantly interrupting them by saying “hell yes.” Whether it’s the hook of opener “Disconnection Syndrome,” the subsequent plod of the title-track that follows, the massive slowdown that hits about a minute into “Sympathy for the Living” as it moves into its chorus, or the Candlemassian finale chug and stomp of “Death Means Nothing,” the Bradford, UK, five-piece’s follow-up to their 2013 debut, Run from the Light (review here), dwells in similar terrain between righteous classic metal and doom as Cruz del Sur denizens Argus, and the band are likewise firm in their purposes and assured in their delivery. “King of all that’s Lost” feels exceptionally weighted in its impact, but set next to the faster motion in the first half of the penultimate “Complicit in Your Abuse,” it feeds into an overarching flow and sense of leather-on-fistpump-or-headbang-take-your-pick-ready audience response. Hell yes? Oh, hell yes.

Monolith Cult on Thee Facebooks

Transcending Records

 

Kayleth & Favequaid, The Second Coming of Heavy – Chapter Six

kayleth-favequaid-second-coming-of-heavy-chapter-six

In bringing together Verona’s Kayleth and Palermo’s Favequaid, The Second Coming of Heavy – Chapter Six works more on a direct theme than some of the other installments in the impressive and impactful series from Ripple Music. But if there’s a particularly nation’s scene worth highlighting in the heavy rock underground, the emergent riffy movement in Italy makes a riotous case for itself as Favequaid bull-in-a-china-shop their way through the nine-minute “Hypochondria” on side B or Kayleth unfold the highlight nod and melody of “The Survivor” earlier, hitting a mark of spatial weight that’s as much about its crash as reach. Starting with the atmospheric pulse of “Desert Caravan” and following up “The Survivor” with the melodic push of “Magnetar,” Kayleth come across as the more progressive of the two outfits, but with the brash finale of “First” rounding out, Favequaid help put emphasis on the underrated diversity within Italian heavy rock on the whole, and maybe that was the idea in the first place.

Kayleth on Thee Facebooks

Favequaid on Thee Facebooks

 

Black Wail, Chromium Homes

black-wail-chromium-homes

Though it gradually comes to life around an intro of Hendrixian noodling at the start of “They,” its opener and longest track (immediate points), the third EP from New Jersey’s Black Wail, Chromium Homes, isn’t through that same song before a decidedly Dio-esque “lookout!” is tossed into the pot. Abrasive, sludgy screaming follows. So yeah, it gets weird pretty quick, but that turns out to be the fun of the 27-minute six-tracker, since it just as easily digs back into languid wah-led groove or lets its keyboards flesh out classic heavy rocking melodies. “Thee Ghost” chugs metallic before stepping back to a harmonized a capella midsection and swinging to its finish, and the title-track basks in heavy blues rock like nothing ever happened – the perfect setup for the nastier “The Dead Man’s Hand,” and weirdo bounce-into-punk-thrust of “Radioactive Mutation” that follow. And because why the hell not: a closing doomed-out cover of “Norwegian Wood.” Somehow that was the only thing missing. Black Wail are getting strange and daring you to do the same. If you think you’re up for it, maybe you are.

Black Wail on Bandcamp

Rhyme and Reason Records

 

Psychic Lemon, Frequency Rhythm Distortion Delay

Psychic-Lemon-Frequency-Rhythm-Distortion-Delay

Prepare for spacedelic immersion. Somewhere there’s a countdown happening and waiting on the other end of it is Psychic Lemon’s sophomore LP, Frequency Rhythm Distortion Delay, the title of which reads like the recipe from which its five tracks have been constructed. The 41-minute sprawler from the London-based trio sets itself to the task of atmospheric breakout with 8:31 opener “Exit to the Death Lane,” and while it’s hard not to be drawn immediately to a track called “International Fuzz Star” – let alone one that’s almost 10 minutes long – one skips the cosmic-grunge shuffle of “Hey Droog!” and the sped-up Sonic Youthism of centerpiece “You’re No Good” at one’s own peril. They tease tension in the kick drum but ultimately end up soothing in meandering closer “Satori Disko,” but the progressive threat has been laid all the same, and it says something about their accomplishment overall that even in the final moments of Frequency Rhythm Distortion Delay, one can’t be certain where Psychic Lemon might be headed next.

Psychic Lemon on Thee Facebooks

Tonzonen Records webstore

 

Ixion, Return

ixion return

Brittany, France-based Ixion is a project spearheaded by multi-instrumentalist/growler/recording engineer/cover artist Julien Prat, and Return (on Finisterian Dead End) is the band’s third full-length. With clean vocals contributed by Yannick Dilly (who also mixed), it captures a contemplative and majestic balance of hope and sorrow, woeful in its extremity but bright-toned in its sprawling lead guitar figures in pieces like “Into Her Light” and the later “Stranger.” This meld fascinates throughout the nine-song/47-minute run, but it’s the poise of execution of all these ideas that make cuts like “Back Home” and the electronics-infused “Contact” stand out and recall some of the best moments of mid-period Katatonia, and from opener/longest track (immediate points) “Out of the Dark” onward, Return makes plain its self-awareness and resilience in capturing its formidable stylistic intention in the reality of the recording. It is a true work of beauty-in-darkness and affecting in both its scope and raw emotionalism.

Ixion on Thee Facebooks

Finisterian Dead End website

 

Rattlesnake, Outlaw Boogie

rattlesnake outlaw boogie

It’s just three songs, but Rattlesnake’s debut demo, Outlaw Boogie (also discussed here), was enough of an aesthetic mission statement all the same to wind up on my list of 2017’s best short releases, and with the swing and swagger provided by drummer/vocalist Adam Kriney of The Golden Grass, the classic-style riffing of guitarists Blake Charlton (Ramming Speed) and JP Gilbert (also vocals) and the wah bass Don Berger brings to “The Reason Why,” well, the reason why is frickin’ obvious. The New York-based newcomers capture a bright ‘70s vibe not dissimilar from The Golden Grass’ self-titled debut, but less serene and more urgent, more charged in its purposes on the whole, and dudelier in that okay-now-it’s-time-to-grow-a-mustache kind of way. Unsurprisingly, Outlaw Boogie is almost maddeningly catchy and cohesive and clear in its direction and intent, and the band seem to arrive in their conceptual foundation ready to move forward onto the next stage of their development. The only reason I call the three-tracker a demo at all and not an EP is because the band does. Otherwise there’s very little about it that doesn’t already denote it as a professional-grade work.

Rattlesnake on Thee Facebooks

In for the Kill Records webstore

 

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Desertfest London 2018 Adds High on Fire, Church of Misery, The Obsessed, Black Rainbows, Death Alley, Akercocke and More

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

Bit of a stunner announcement from Desertfest London 2018, whose third headliner arrives in the form of High on Fire celebrating their 20th anniversary, and who’ll be joined at the Camden Town festival by doom legends The Obsessed, Japan’s number one riff export Church of Misery, plus Italian forerunners Black Rainbows, UK devil worshiping extremists Akercocke, Dutch proto-specialists Death Alley and more.

Look. I post a lot of fest updates. I mean, a lot. This is one of three slated for today, for example. Rarely does an announcement immediately up the game of a given event like this one does for Desertfest London 2018. With High on Fire completing the triumvirate of headliners alongside Monster Magnet and Graveyard, and The Obsessed and Church of Misery joining EyehategodNapalm DeathWeedeaterElderNebula and Warning on the next tier, the festival’s seventh edition moves into nigh-unfuckwithable terrain. Kudos to Desertfest on outdoing itself once again in 2018.

From the PR wire:

desertfest london 2018 square banner

DESERTFEST LONDON announce final headliner High On Fire and more acts to join the 2018 edition!

DESERTFEST LONDON announce High On Fire as final headliner and further acts to join the likes of Monster Magnet, Graveyard, Napalm Death, Eyehategod and many more to set the riff party in Camden on May 4-6th, 2018.

The final headliner for Desertfest London 2018 is an act fronted by a man who is no stranger to the DF family and all it encompasses, having headlined last year’s proceedings with one of his many musical outlets Sleep: living legend Matt Pike returns to Camden with the mighty HIGH ON FIRE. Formed in Oakland, California in 1998, the heavy metal trio have perfected their feel-good, balls-out and take-no-prisoner sound. HOF’s sludgy-thrash vibrations are an unstoppable wrecking force, with seven seminal albums under their belt; we are more than ready for the HOF tidal wave to hit.

Doom-rock trailblazers THE OBSESSED will make their first UK appearance next May after their two-decade long hiatus. Having recently reformed and playing shows met with critical acclaim, this will truly be a set to remember, and it is an honour to finally play host to one of the most iconic bands of our time.

Also returning to UK shores are Japanese overlords CHURCH OF MISERY, always delivering staggering live performances, the trio are a constant welcome addition to Desertfest. Their riff-filled, horror inspired sound has risen to fresh heights with new singer Hiroyuki Takano at the helm.

Space leaders BLACK RAINBOWS are crashing into town, fuelled by the power of hard rock and insanely good riffs. The Italian psych-fuzz trio have been storming through the cosmos for the last 10 years, their expert fusion of slick 70’s swagger with a 90’s stoner-grunge tint make them one of the most talked about and respected acts of their kind across Europe. Straight up, fuzzing good times. Speaking of heavy, London extreme metal masters AKERCOCKE are heading to familiar grounds to bring their perfected devilry to eager ears!

Dutch destroyers and feel good heroes DEATH ALLEY will bring their rock’n’roll, punked up party to Desertfest 2018. A nod to times gone past, the band plays proto-metal psychedelic music with a slab of heavy metal chucked in for good measure – if you want energy, look no further. Acclaimed newcomers PUPPY, who have been on hot on the lips of the London scene for some time now, is another welcome addition. They are hard to label but a true must-watch!

Also making up the bill are Bay Area fuzz-lovers THE WATCHERS, UK favourite psych demons OLD MAN LIZARD, Oakland’s stoner rock stalwarts BLACKWÜLF, Mancunian groove leaders PIST and heavy doom harbourers MORASS OF MOLASSES.

Desertfest London 2018
4th-6th May in Camden Town, London
3-day pass (£115) now on sale AT THIS LOCATION

Our special split payment plan is available until December 12th!
Pay half of your ticket now and the other half in January. Find more info HERE.

http://www.desertfest.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/DesertfestLondon
https://www.instagram.com/desertfest_london/
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High on Fire, “Devilution” Live at Roskilde 2017

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Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, Vol. 1: What Your Love Tells You to Do

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

uncle-acid-and-the-deadbeats-vol-1-1

I don’t remember exactly when I made the decision, but at some point, amid an unceasing insistence of YouTube recommendations, I told myself that I wasn’t going to listen to Vol. 1 by Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats until I could do so on a physical format. The likelihood of this happening? Just about nil. My understanding is that maximum 100 copies of the original Killer Candy Records self-released CDR version were pressed, and I’ve seen numbers quoted as low as 20, so barring some lightning-strike/winning-lottery-ticket-type oddsbeating or an unspeakable act of generosity, it didn’t seem like the kind of thing that would ever be found, and likewise, the London-based band didn’t seem all that interested in putting it back into the public sphere — where, to the rest of the universe who probably just streamed it, it was anyway.

Listening now to the Rise Above Records reissue of Vol. 1, pressed to CD and LP in giving-proper-due form, this was unquestionably the incorrect choice on my part. Like most paths we take that lead us to willful ignorance, just the wrong way to go. I denied myself a crucial context in which to place Uncle Acid‘s subsequent three records — 2011’s landmark Blood Lust (discussed here), 2013’s Mind Control (review here) and 2015’s The Night Creeper (review here) — but more than that, I missed out on the seething rawness of “Dead Eyes of London,” the hook of opener “Crystal Spiders,” the psycho-surf of “Vampire Circus” (not to be confused with the Earthride album of the same name) and the organ-laced madhouse shuffle of “I Don’t Know.” Granted I didn’t know what I was missing, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t missing it.

More the fool I, then, because particularly for those who became Uncle Acid fans around the time of Blood Lust — which Rise Above picked up for release in 2012 following the explosive reception that sent the band almost immediately to the fore of the heavy underground before they even really began playing shows in 2013 — Vol. 1 should be considered essential. One can hear the roots of “I’ll Cut You Down” and “Death’s Door” in “Crystal Spiders” and the later ultra-fuzzed-out swinging highlight “Do What Your Love Tells You,” and more than that, these pieces and others like the eight-minute “Lonely and Strange” stand up on their own as examples of the rare level of craft that has typified Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats‘ work throughout their tenure: memorable songs executed with a deep-running sense of vibe that, as Vol. 1 affirms, has been theirs all along.

uncle acid

Parts of the album are somewhat rudimentary compared to the more careful arrangements that would follow by the time the band — led by Kevin R. Starrs, who’s more “shadowy presence” than “frontman” here — got around to Mind Control, but that’s the idea. They’re supposed to be. The nodding “Witches Garden” buzzes its guitar alongside a running line of organ in a manner that makes character of its rough edges, and seems all the murkier for that in a way that feeds into the mood of the record overall. Of course, this is hearing it with the hindsight of the ensuing seven years and all that Uncle Acihas gone on to accomplish — not to mention a remix and master by Starrs — but while Vol. 1 isn’t shy about its flaws or moments of indulgence, it not only serves as an important documentation of the beginnings of the band’s development, but brims with the creative force that still drives them. Again, it’s as much worth hearing Vol. 1 for what it has to offer on its own as what it brings to the wider Uncle Acid discography.

For example, the aforementioned “Lonely and Strange” offers deceptive nuance at the end of side A in its blend of acoustic and electric guitar, hypnotic repetition in its rhythm, a charmingly clumsy transition at the 4:30 mark, and a long stretch of classically heavy rocking instrumental wistfulness that’s unlike anything the band would again conjure. A plotted-seeming solo is met with fervent crash cymbal before dropping to organ and noise freakout to resume with even more aplomb, and it rounds out its last minute with a dive into Sabbathian acoustics and bass.

To complement this, the band brings “Wind up Toys” to close out side B and end the record with a sense of motion that echoes the ’60s surf horrors of “Vampire Circus” but has even more of a rockabilly-style motoring to its core riff early before shifting into an acoustic bridge around two minutes in and from there departing on an extended guitar lead that carries through the remaining five-ish minutes of the track. That’s something Uncle Acid would just about never do at this point. Their approach has tightened to a degree that, unless they were brazenly breaking their own rules, it seems unlikely they’d indulge such a departure from structure once they’ve established it so clearly.

Nonetheless, it’s the kind of thing a band does early in their run when they’re figuring out who they want to be as players and as a group, and to have that moment preserved on Vol. 1 only makes this reissue more justified. Add to that the consideration that The Night Creeper seemed to be endeavoring toward a harsher bite than that of Mind Control before it, and one could further argue that Uncle Acid were at least on some level looking to come full circle in bringing the lessons they’ve learned since together with the bare-flesh authenticity of this material.

There are arguments to be made on either side of that, I suppose, but what’s more important is those arguments can be had now that Vol. 1 has seen an actual release, and that those who never had the chance to take it on before — or who did have the chance but were just too much of a dope to do so — can finally do so. In their aesthetic contribution and in their sheer level of songwriting, Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats are among the most important heavy bands of their generation, and Vol. 1 provides an essential look at their origins and a killer listen besides. It is not by any means to be avoided, in whatever form.

Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, “Crystal Spiders”

Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats website

Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats on Thee Facebooks

Rise Above Records on Thee Facebooks

Rise Above Records website

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The Brothers Keg Post Debut Demo Folklore, Myths and Legends of The Brothers Keg

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 14th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

After painstaking hours of keen-eyed detective work, I’ve concluded that the central mission behind the newly-issued two-song Folklore, Myths and Legends of The Brothers Keg by London trio The Brothers Keg is to introduce the band to their audience. How did I come to this resounding realization? Well, the first track on the thing is called “Introducing the Brothers Keg.” There’s that. Also it’s nine minutes long — so I had some time to think about it. That helped too.

Hey folks, it’s a process.

One might recognize guitarist/vocalist Tom Hobson and Tom Fyfe as the current bassist/vocalist and drummer for the soul-rocking trio Stubb. In The Brothers Keg, the transmutated rhythm section brings aboard bassist/vocalist Paul Rosser and with “Introducing the Brothers Keg” and its also-nine-minutes-long companion-piece “Castle Keg,” they hit immediately into a righteous sonic gamut that’s as comfortable basking in the King Buffalo-esque spaciousness of the first song as the post-Sleep roll of the latter, both captured to their fullest in the mixing and mastering job helmed by Chris West (Landskap).

At just under 19 minutes total, it’s not a minor sampling of what The Brothers Keg can do at this point, and while one might expect them eventually to veer away from some of the gruffer aspects they present here in favor of a more melodic approach particularly to the vocals, they use that edge well in these tracks and give a clear signal of where they might be headed and, sure enough, a right and proper introduction.

Check it out:

Folklore Myths and Legends of The Brothers Keg

Download our new demo for free through the link below. Cheers.

Bros Keg.

https://thebrotherskeg.bandcamp.com/releases

Tracklisting:
1. Introducing The Brothers Keg (demo) 09:32
2. Castle Keg (demo) 09:17

The Brothers Keg is:
Tom Hobson – Guitar/Vocals
Paul Rosser – Bass/Vocals
Tom Fyfe – Drums

Recorded at Farm Factory Studios, Mixed and Mastered at Scuzzball Studios by Chris West

https://www.facebook.com/thebrotherskeg/
https://thebrotherskeg.bandcamp.com/releases

The Brothers Keg, Folklore, Myths and Legends of The Brothers Keg (2017)

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Desertfest London 2018: Graveyard, Elder, Weedeater, Freedom Hawk, Zeke, Miss Lava, Mountains and Trevor’s Head Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 13th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Hey, look, don’t get me wrong. It was pretty impressive when Desertfest London 2018 came out of the gate in September and confirmed Monster Magnet, Eyehategod and Nebula in its first round of announcements. That was badass — no doubt about it. But it seems like with this next batch of acts confirmed, we’re starting to see more of the shape the festival will take. Weedeater will make a return that will no doubt be welcome, and likewise Graveyard have been confirmed as headliners, and Zeke will bring their inimitable speed rock to the proceedings as well.

Portugal’s Miss Lava hit the UK for the first time, Freedom Hawk head across the Atlantic from their Virginia home, Elder return as conquering heroes, and locals Mountains and Trevor’s Head give London a chance to get to know some of its own. If that already looks righteous to you, and it should, there’s a payment plan available. Might want to hit it up.

Here’s details from the PR wire:

desertfest london 2018 poster

DESERTFEST LONDON adds Graveyard and seven more bands to the 2018 lineup; tickets on sale now!

DESERTFEST LONDON are thrilled to reveal the next 8 acts for the 2018 edition of the festival, who will be joining the likes of MONSTER MAGNET, EYEHATEGOD, NEBULA & JEX THOTH to bring a battering ram of riffs down upon Camden next May.

If any band can claim responsibility for the surge of retro-infused, blues-stuffed rock n roll seeping through the underground over the past decade, it has to be GRAVEYARD. We are delighted to announce that following their brief hiatus, the band will make their long awaited UK return in the most deserving form – a headline set at Desertfest 2018. Rising to the top of the fertile Swedish (and indeed European) fuzz-drenched scene thanks to four immaculate albums, Graveyard quickly mastered their straight-down-the-middle rock foundation and built outwards. Effortlessly creating mind invading hooks just waiting to rattle around your brain for weeks and peppering them with doses of heavy psych, subdued moments and the soulful vocals of Joakim Nilsson, it isn’t hard to see why Graveyard are one of the best bands on the planet.

Goliathan sludge shovelers WEEDEATER, who are no strangers to the Desertfest, are finally returning to their spiritual home. Each time these stoner titans have played, the queues have been round the block. Their legendary status precedes them, and for good reason – as frontman Dave ‘Dixie’ Collins revels in stories to punters at the bar of shooting off his own big toe, they are a true DF family band and one of the most “please book them every year” acts in our remit. Weedeater are simply not to be missed this May – it’s going to be sweaty, loud and most importantly, smoky.

We’re pleased once again to be bringing ELDER back to London, hot on the heels of yet another mesmerising album in Reflections of a Floating World. There was no question that the trio had their work cut out in following-up 2015’s epic Lore. Evolving over the past five years, from one of heavy riffing’s most potential-filled practitioners to a progressive scope entirely of their own, each time they take the stage the crowd are undoubtedly blown away by their sheer musical talent.

Also on the bill are Seattle underground legends ZEKE, a band sandwiched somewhere between the rapid-fire, speed-guzzling lunacy of punk and the distinctly bourbon-scented outright abandon of heavy rock n’ roll. Zeke are finally upon our shores and we’re thrilled to announce they’ll be joining us in Camden next May.

We’ve also added the fuzz filled frenzy that is FREEDOM HAWK, Portugal’s stoner-grunge quartet MISS LAVA (making their first UK appearance), proggy Londoners MOUNTAINS and the chunky stoner riffs of TREVOR’S HEAD all lined up for the 2018 proceedings. This is just the tip of the iceberg – stay tuned for the next offering!

Desertfest London 2018
4th-6th May in Camden Town, London
3-day pass (£115) now on sale AT THIS LOCATION

Our special split payment plan is available until December 12th!
Pay half of your ticket now and the other half in January. Find more info HERE.

http://www.desertfest.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/DesertfestLondon
https://twitter.com/DesertFest
https://www.instagram.com/desertfest_london/

Graveyard, “Too Much is Not Enough” official video

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