LowFlyingHawks to Release Anxious Ghosts EP on June 28

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 5th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

low flying hawks

The initials-only guitarist/vocalist duo of AAL and EHA who comprise the core of LowFlyingHawks — their kind-of-a-big-deal rhythm section happens to feature Trevor Dunn of Mr. Bungle and Dale Crover of the Melvins; which continues to be enough to make me wonder just who the hell these two dudes are, as that’s not a circle easily entered by those who weren’t already too cool for commerce in the ’90s — return with a new EP called Anxious Ghosts. I’ve heard literally none of it, but immediately the release seems to be a departure, what with the title in English — their debut album was 2016’s Kofuku (review here), which they answered the next year with Genkaku (review here) — and the artwork as well is a marked shift in style.

It raises the question, of course, as to whether or not the music on Anxious Ghosts will follow suit or if their atmospheric heavy post-rock/metal will continue the course the first two records laid out. Magnetic Eye, which has been behind the band all along, has the release this time around as well, and it’s somewhat telling of their approach as a whole that even though they’ve worked on relatively quick turnarounds to get stuff out and worked with some high-profile names in order to do so, there’s still a sense of mystique about the band and they still seem to be only a partially-known quantity.

Info on the release is minimal in terms of who recorded and all that kind of thing. Toshi Kasai did the last album, so if this is material from those sessions, he would’ve helmed it. Otherwise, could be anybody. Guess we’ll find out sooner or later.

It’s out June 28. To the tracklisting:

lowflyinghawks anxious ghosts

Brand new Low Flying Hawks EP that ranges from delicate moments of soft beauty to the crushing sludge we’ve come to love from this astonishing band featuring Dale Crover and Trevor Dunn.

1. Night Flight
2. Somewhere (Part 1)
3. Somewhere (Part 2)
4. Hollow Grasp
5. Doors to Nowhere

Releases June 28, 2019.

https://www.facebook.com/Lowflyinghawks-1626755734268513/
https://lowflyinghawks.bandcamp.com/releases
http://magneticeyerecords.merchnow.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords
http://store.merhq.com/

Low Flying Hawks, Genkaku (2017)

Tags: , , , , , ,

High Priest Stream Sanctum EP in Full; Out Tomorrow on Magnetic Eye

Posted in audiObelisk on April 18th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

high priest

Rife with melody and a brooding post-grunge atmosphere, High Priest‘s new EP, Sanctum, sees release mere hours from now through Magnetic Eye Records. The April 19 offering is the band’s first for the label and follows a limited 2016 7″ — they added a few more tracks to the download — and is what might be legitimately called their debut EP. If one considers that, the grip the band has on their aesthetic is downright terrifying, balancing as it does classic doom riffing with a harder rock edge in the melodies, all the while without flogging itself into hyper-emotionalism as so many do in these after-Pallbearer times. The band’s pedigree in deathcore mongerers Like Rats isn’t really relevant sonically to what High Priest do throughout the four-track/20-minute Sanctum, but no question there’s a definite comfort level at play. That some of these guys have known each other since they were kids, as the PR wire explains below, isn’t really much of a surprise when one listens to Sanctum. They don’t at all sound like strangers who just wound up in the same band.

All the better then that bassist Justin Pence would so righteously high priest sanctumtap into his inner Cornell on opener “Descent” — and, more impressively, pull it off — or that guitarists Pete Grossmann and John Regan would so fluidly wrap their tone around the subsequent “Creature” while drummer Dan Polak thuds away behind as though his toms spent a week telling yo-mamma jokes and he’s finally getting payback. The final track of the four, “Offering,” is longer at seven minutes flat, and ties together a lot of what High Priest — who of course are not to be confused with L.A.-based High Priestess, on Ripple; though they should tour together — are doing throughout the EP, but even the NWOBHM twist in the guitars of “Paradigm” just before seem to add something new to the proceedings when the four-piece have otherwise established their modus. “Paradigm” also boasts a significant hook, but is ultimately less of an outlier for that among “Descent” and “Creature,” both of which evoke burl without getting lost in chestbeating cliche and seem to reside easily in a place where metal meets rock, rock meets doom and kick meets ass.

But not to harp on it, but the really striking factor here is the newness. Sure, that prior single came out three years ago, so High Priest have been at it for a bit, but Sanctum is still ostensibly their first EP, and while I might want to hear them get a little weirder with melody across a full-length release and change up arrangements as they hint toward between “Descent” and “Creature” here — with the guitars giving up lead position instrumentally to the bass and drums going from one song to the next — there’s no question in listening through that High Priest sound ready to give it a shot. If taking their time was what let them come up with these songs, then keep doing that, but otherwise, the sooner the better works fine for me, thanks. Oh, and make that High Priest/High Priestess tour happen too. How could you not?

Stream Sanctum in its entirety on the player below. Beneath that, you’ll find some quick comment from the band and more background off the PR wire. You know how we do.

Enjoy:

High Priest on Sanctum EP:

“This band started as an excuse to do something fun. What would all our weird influences sound like if we mashed them together? I think this record is a perfect amalgamation of that. Our only goal is for people to hear it and hopefully have as much fun listening as we have playing it. We also hope people are moved to go out and buy deep cut Thin Lizzy records and headbang to Mercyful Fate. If this record inspires one person to make something, or gets someone excited the way those records make me feel, that’s the biggest compliment we could ever get. We’re so excited for ‘Sanctum’ to see the world!”

Order Link: https://highpriestchicago.bandcamp.com/album/sanctum-ep

Although they formed in 2016, the members of Chicago’s HIGH PRIEST have known each other for a good portion of their lives. Guitarists Pete Grossmann and John Regan, singer/bassist Justin Pence and drummer Dan Polak have been playing together in various bands for over 15 years, with Grossman and Polak’s friendship going back to actual childhood (Pete remembers Dan getting the training wheels off his first bike).

Dan and John were already playing together in Southern Lord death/hardcore fusion outfit Like Rats when, during a night out seeing Electric Wizard, John yelled to Dan, “we should do a band like this!”

High Priest Sanctum was produced, engineered and mixed by guitarist Pete Grossmann at his Bricktop Recording studio in Chicago. The 4-song EP contrasts dark, soulful doom with massive riffs and delicate undertones, bringing to mind the juxtaposition of despair, hope and resignation across a foundation of churning heaviness that bands like Alice in Chains and Trouble make so appealing.

High Priest on Thee Facebooks

High Priest on Twitter

High Priest on Instagram

High Priest on Bandcamp

Magnetic Eye Records website

Tags: , , , , ,

Leather Lung Sign to Magnetic Eye Records; New Album Later This Year

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 29th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

There’s been a fair amount of Magnetic Eye Records news this week, all culled from a packed newsletter the imprint sent out last Friday like they were trying to sneak it in before the weekend. Yesterday, we highlighted the successful crowdfunding of the Black Sabbath Vol. 4 Redux and The Best of Black Sabbath project, and before that, it was the signings of Caustic Casanova and Brume. Today, it’s Boston’s own Leather Lung who serve as the capoff to a the label’s additions, and they come to the roster through now-labelmates Summoner, whose Chris Johnson produced Leather Lung‘s 2016 full-length debut, Lost in Temptation (review here). They apparently already have a new record in the can and ready to go, and it’ll serve as their Magnetic Eye debut later this year, even as they also take part in The Best of Black Sabbath, covering a yet-to-be-announced track from the forebears of doom.

Not sure what I’ll do if Magnetic Eye sends out another newsletter today but you know I try to keep up as best I can.

From the band and PR wire:

leather lung mer

Leather Lung is thrilled to announce we have joined the Magnetic Eye family! We are excited to work with such an amazing label amongst so many talented artists! Much more on the way!!

Says the label: LEATHER LUNG joins us after label and band circled each other for a good two years, thanks to the continued efforts of Summoner singer (and Deafheaven bassist) Chris Johnson to make a love connection. At last, this crushing Boston 4-piece has arrived at MERHQ with a love for 90’s sludge, outlaw country and delta blues and a record that’s built to destroy all preconceptions of what “stoner metal” is. Expect to see their already-completed new album landing early in the second half of 2019

Leather Lung is:
Mike: Vocals
Zach: Guitar/Backup Vocals
Ben: Drums
Jesse: Bass/Backup Vocals

https://www.facebook.com/leatherlungcult/
https://www.instagram.com/leather_lung/
https://leatherlungcult.bandcamp.com/

Leather Lung, Lost in Temptation (2016)

Tags: , , ,

Magnetic Eye Records Completes Backing for Vol. 4 Redux & The Best of Black Sabbath Tributes

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 28th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Wasn’t this bound to happen? Either Vol. 4 or Master of Reality? And by the way, there’s really no wrong answer there. So, you know, yeah. April 2020 is the listed ship date on Vol. 4 Redux and The Best of Black Sabbath, both of which continue Magnetic Eye Records‘ wildly successful ‘Redux’ series that’s already touched on HendrixFloydHelmet and has Alice in Chains on deck as a next installment. Still, obviously Black Sabbath have a special place in the history of heavy — right there at the start of it, maybe page three? — and accordingly, the big guns are coming out for the homage, whether it’s Matt Pike doing “FX” or Bongzilla taking on “Snowblind” or Tony Reed doing “Laguna Sunrise.” There’s no way it’s going to miss.

My only hope is that High Reeper make “Changes” heavy.

Interested to see how The Best of Black Sabbath pans out as well, with Year of the CobraElephant Tree and Earthless and a host of others confirmed. I saw Elephant Tree do a killer version of “Paranoid” live this past Fall. Wouldn’t mind a studio take on that from them as well.

But really, there’s no way to lose here.

Word from Magnetic Eye follows:

vol 4 redux

If you told us even as recently as six weeks ago that we’d be working on a Redux version of Black Sabbath’s Volume 4 and, before the end of March, artists including The Obsessed, Whores, Zakk Wylde, and Matt goddamn Pike would have all committed to be part of the project, we would’ve probably answered, “Wow.”

And if you’d then said, “Oh yeah, you’ll also assemble a Best of Black Sabbath companion LP featuring Earthless, Elephant Tree, Year of the Cobra, and tons of other great artists including a whole crop of brand-new Magnetic Eye roster bands, who by the way you’ll find time to sign during all the madness of your Vol. 4 Kickstarter,” we’d have most likely said, “piss off.”

And yet, here we are, and all of the above has come to pass.

We are indeed reduxing Volume 4 and offering up a Best of Sabbath companion record, we do have some of the greatest heavy artists in the world committed to be part of this project, and we did somehow find time to sign three new bands during all of this, each of whom we’ll have a new record coming from later this year, and all of whom we’re inviting to be part of the project.

So, yeah. Wow.

THOU – WHEELS OF CONFUSION / THE STRAIGHTENER
THE OBSESSED – TOMORROW’S DREAM
HIGH REEPER – CHANGES
MATT PIKE – FX
SPIRIT ADRIFT – SUPERNAUT
BONGZILLA – SNOWBLIND
WHORES – CORNUCOPIA
TONY REED – LAGUNA SUNRISE
HAUNT – ST VITUS DANCE
ZAKK SABBATH – UNDER THE SUN / EVERY DAY COMES AND GOES

ALBUM ART AND DESIGN ALYSSA MOCERE

IN ADDITION, WE HAVE INCREASED THE SCOPE OF OUR PROJECT TO INCLUDE 13 ADDITIONAL BLACK SABBATH SONGS ON A BEST OF BLACK SABBATH REDUX RECORD.

Summoner
Elephant Tree
Scott Reeder
IRONWEED
Earthless
Chris Wyse
Rwake
Mooner
Year of the Cobra
Leather Lung
Brume
Caustic Casanova
Dead Witches

http://store.merhq.com
http://magneticeyerecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords

Black Sabbath, “Snowblind”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Caustic Casanova Sign to Magnetic Eye Records; New Album out This Summer

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 27th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Magnetic Eye Records announced three pickups this week. Brume, who were posted about yesterday, Caustic Casanova, about whom I’m posting right now — fancy that! — and Leather Lung, and Leather Lung, who’ll get a post Friday. Busy label. Busy band as well, as I don’t know when you last saw a stack of Caustic Casanova tour dates, but they are generally fairly mighty undertakings. They’re a good pickup for Magnetic Eye even apart from their we’ll-just-go-ahead-and-hand-deliver-our-songs touring ethic, as their records pull off that rare feat — progressive punk — and make it heavy without falling all over themselves with self-indulgence in the process. Good stuff. I owe their The Pantheon Collection Vol. 1-3 a review — currently slated for Wed., April 24; because yes, I believe in advance scheduling (subject to change) — so uh, check back for that, I guess. Or you can skip my blah blah and just stream at at the bottom of this post. I won’t be offended either way.

Band and label announcements follow in that order:

caustic casanova magnetic eye

Alright everyone – it’s time! We are SO STOKED to announce that we’ve joined the Magnetic Eye Records roster!!! We’ve been huge fans of their bands, Redux records, and work ethic for a long time so we couldn’t be more thrilled or honored to join this magnificent, merry metal family!! Along with a new full length coming around late summer/early fall this year and accompanying national tours we still have a few more surprises up our sleeves so STAY TUNED! CC train never stops! From the desert, to the ocean, to the snowy tundra to your kitchens all across the globe – we are coming for you.

Keep it Sabbath y’all.

From the label: “CAUSTIC CASANOVA modestly describes themselves as, “a loud, heavy band from the nation’s capital,” but that hardly does justice to a band that’s been compared to bands ranging from Torche to Faith No More to Voivod… wtf? Hell, we don’t know, we just knew they belonged here with us. Happy to welcome this acrobatic D.C. three-piece to the roster, and you can look for their album to land sometime around late Summer!”

Caustic Casanova is:
Stefanie Zaenker – Drums, Vocals
Francis Beringer – Bass, Vocals
Andrew Yonki – Guitar

http://causticcasanova.com/
https://www.facebook.com/CausticCasanova
https://www.instagram.com/CausticCasanova/
https://twitter.com/causticcasanova
http://store.merhq.com
http://magneticeyerecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords

Caustic Casanova, The Pantheon Collection Vol. 1-3 (2018)

Tags: , , , ,

Brume Sign to Magnetic Eye Records

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 26th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Brume will enter the studio next month to record their second full-length, Rabbits, for release on Magnetic Eye Records. They’ll be working with none other than Billy Frickin’ Anderson — whose CV I’d list even in part but frankly it’s exhausting to think about all the good records he’s helmed, up to and including Brume‘s 2017 debut, Rooster (review here) — on the effort, which also follows their first incursion to Europe, something that one highly doubts will be a one-time-only event. A Fall release would put them right in line for festival season. Just saying.

But of course there’s a lot that needs to happen A-to-B on that one, perhaps most pivotally actually making the album. And “late 2019” can turn into “early 2020” before you know it. I just get excited about these things and about cool bands doing cool stuff, like signing to labels and making new albums and touring. Always a good time.

Cheers to Brume and Magnetic Eye on the partnership and here’s looking forward to the album when it’s ready to roll.

Announcements from band and label follow:

brume magnetic eye

BRUME – Magnetic Eye Records

We are thrilled to announce our signing to Magnetic Eye Records! We head to the studio with Billy ( Everything Hz ) to record ‘Rabbits’ in April and will see a late 2019 release. We have been eyeing up MER and its insane roster for quite some time and honestly couldn’t imagine a more fitting family of stoner metal misfits for Brume to be a part of.

Let’s party 2019!

Says Magnetic Eye: BRUME brings its melodic drone-doom approach to MER after having released several records, toured the US and Europe, and played festivals from Austria to London. Their San Francisco aesthetic brings a welcome West Coast infusion to the label, and this April sees them entering the studio with distortion guru Billy Anderson to embark on recording their forthcoming label outing… which we cannot wait to share with you.

Brume
Susie: Vocals/Bass
Jamie: Guitar/Vocals
Jordan: Drums

https://www.brumeband.com/
https://brumesf.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/brumeband/
http://brume.bigcartel.com/
http://store.merhq.com
http://magneticeyerecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords

Brume, “Man-Made” official video

Tags: , , , , ,

Horsehunter Release Self-Titled Album; Streaming in Full Now

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 5th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

horsehunter

Wow, you know, when Horsehunter put out their 2015 debut, Caged in Flesh (review here), it was like, golly, this sure is heavy, but their self-titled is a complete turn. I mean, I’ve heard of selling out, but to have a band like this come out of Melbourne’s vibrant heavy scene and turn to whatever this kind of blend of pop-punk college rock is and then have the sheer gall to name the record after the band, as if to say, “Yeah, no, just kidding with all that grueling thick tone and harsh sludge and whatnot. We’re in it to play coffee houses.” Bands should be allowed to expand their sound and explore different directions and all that, but seriously. Dudes sound like they’re trying to write the soundtrack to a thoughtful slow-mo montage in a rom-com. What the fuck.

Nah I’m just playing. Of course it’s brutal as shit. Horsehunter dropped Horsehunter sans advance hype on March 2 in collusion with Magnetic Eye Records and it’s streaming in all its four-song, wreck-your-skull glory right now at the bottom of this post, courtesy of their Bandcamp. Check it out if you need to clear your sinuses.

Info from the PR wire:

horsehunter self-titled

Horsehunter – Horsehunter (New Album March 2, 2019)

Album 2 from Melbourne’s legendary doom metal heroes, Horsehunter. An unforgiving follow up to 2015’s critically acclaimed debut, Caged in Flesh. This S/T album comes equipped again, with massive tones and a lumbering vibe along with an underlying hypnotic bleak psychedelia throughout . For fans of High on Fire, Sleep and Baroness, Available 3/2/2019 on Magnetic Eye Records MER077

Artwork by Jesse Webb

Produced and Engineered by Tigglyfuzz Kokiri (the producer formerly known as Tigran Fuzzmeister)

Co-Engineered by Jon McNichol
Recorded live at Twin Earth Studios, Adelaide.
Overdubbed in various locations around Australia.

Tracklisting:
1. Horsehunter – Nuclear Rapture
2. Horsehunter – the Savage
3. Horsehunter – Bring out Yer Dead
4. Horsehunter – Collapse

Horsehunter was:
Dan Harris – Guitar
Michael Harutyunyan – Guitar & Vocals
Himiona Stringer – Bass Guitar
Nick Cron – Drums

horsehunter.bandcamp.com
facebook.com/officialhorseHunter
youtube.com/officialhorsehunter
soundcloud.com/officialhorsehunter
@horsehunterisdead
merhq.com
facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords
store.merhq.com
twitter.com/magnetic_eye

Horsehunter, Horsehunter (2019)

Tags: , , , , ,

Mountain Tamer Premiere New Single “Death in the Woods”

Posted in audiObelisk on February 26th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

MOUNTAIN TAMER

Los Angeles trio Mountain Tamer continue to elude easy classification with their new single. As they did on last year’s sophomore full-length, Godfortune // Dark Matters (review here), and the prior 2016 self-titled debut (review here), they offer psychotropic signals to the converted in waves of guitar effects casting out over a wide soundscape, but there’s something darker about “Death in the Woods” — certainly the title carries a sense of threat as well — lurking beneath the surface’s more shimmering aspects. Its low end is grim, its vocals just a bit throatier, so that as the song moves further into its crash-laden freakout, the screams that come aren’t entirely unexpected.

Mountain Tamer accomplish this in efficient time, as “Death in the Woods” is only about three and a half minutes long. They’ve tested waters in such mountain tamer death in the woodsa manner before, of course, whether it was their 2015 Mtn Tmr demo (review here) that preceded the first album or 2017’s Living in Vain (review here) that preceded the second. And we won’t know just how much of a foreshadow “Death in the Woods” is casting until their next release — it’ll reportedly be an EP — arrives, but the troubling undercurrent in Mountain Tamer continues to give them an edge that so much of West Coast psych simply doesn’t have. It’s not for the bro-down, skate-so-you-can-work-on-your-social-media-brand set. It’s up to something entirely more sinister.

It’s kind of a curious case with Mountain Tamer. Every time I stop listening to the band, especially the last album, I think to myself, “Nah, you’ve got it wrong,” and I go back trying to hear it with different ears, like maybe the party vibe is there and I’m just not getting it — would not be the first time I wasn’t invited to the party, by any means — but no. Even putting aside the name of it, if you listen to “Death in the Woods,” what you’re hearing is Mountain Tamer — Andru Hall on guitar/vocals, Dave Teget on bass and Casey Garcia on drums — take elements from the modern West Coast heavy psych movement and twist them toward their own ends. And those ends indeed seem to be twisted. As Hall intones in the verse, “It’s okay to be afraid.” So be it.

Mountain Tamer hit the road next month alongside Salem’s Bend, heading to SXSW and elsewhere. You’ll find those dates under the player below, as well as some quick comment from the band.

Please enjoy:

Mountain Tamer on “Death in the Woods”:

‘Death In The Woods’ is about surviving on primal instincts, and how in the end we are all wild animals. The song helps showcase the heavy groovy psychedelic sound Mountain Tamer has been honing in for years as well as gives a taste of an upcoming EP that is in the works.

Mountain Tamer Tour Dates:
3/7 – Las Vegas, NV – Vamp’d
3/8 – Ogden, UT – Brewski’s
3/9 – Denver, CO – Bar Bar
3/10 – Wichita, KS – The Elbow Room
3/11 – Oklahoma, OK – Blue Note Lounge
3/12 – Fort Worth, TX – Lola’s
3/13 – Houston, TX – Rudyard’s
3/14 – Austin, TX – Spiderhouse (SXSW Stoner Jam)
3/15 – San Antonio, TX – The Mix
3/16 – San Angelo, TX – Deadhorse
3/17 – El Paso, TX – Frank’s Rockin’ Cigar Bar

Mountain Tamer is:
Andru Hall – Guitar/Vocals
Casey Garcia – Drums
Dave Teget – Bass

Mountain Tamer on Thee Facebooks

Mountain Tamer on Instagram

Mountain Tamer on Bandcamp

Magnetic Eye Records website

Nasoni Records website

Tags: , , , , , ,