Video Premiere: Lamprey, “Lord Fire Giant” Live at Ceremony of Sludge 2014

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 25th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

lamprey

This past weekend, in Portland, the fourth Ceremony of Sludge was held at the Tonic Lounge. The likes of Holy Grove, Disenchanter, Diesto and many others played, but notably absent was the trio Lamprey, who headlined the first night of the festival in 2014. The dual-bass three-piece of Justin BrownBlaine Burnham and Spencer Norman are on a sort of mini-hiatus leading up to the release of their next album, what you might call a “break” rather than a “break-up,” while Brown takes up the bassist role in Witch Mountain and embarks on that band’s rather considerable touring schedule.  Also a principal organizer of Ceremony of SludgeBrown was in NYC this past Saturday opening for YOB and Enslaved when the fest was going on. Hey, if you gotta be somewhere.

I asked him about missing his fest at that show and he was bummed (I’ve always had a reverse-knack for conversation) not to be there, but said he’d spend the next however many months editing clips of the bands playing, so he’d get to experience it one way or another. As Lamprey begin to move past their 2012 EP, The Burden of Beasts (review here) and into their new record preceded by the recently-revealed video for “Iron Awake,” they make a fitting conclusion to this series of videos that it’s been my complete pleasure to host. They’re the sixth band — a total of eight played over the two nights last March — but the final clip is their “Lord Fire Giant,” which also closed The Burden of Beasts. In it, we can hear Burnham‘s shouts in all their rawness and hear the interplay of his and Brown‘s basses on the Club 21 stage while Norman keeps the groove in fluid motion, almost a calming presence behind the kit.

The other videos are here if you’d like to catch up, but having dug Lamprey for a few years now and been to-date unable to see them live, the quality footage is appreciated. As we move out of one series of Ceremony of Sludge videos and look forward to hopefully starting another, I’m glad to bring forth “Lord Fire Giant” in all its frothing, molten fury.

Audio is by Tim Burke at Penumbra Sound Arts. Video is by Cole Boggess and Justin Anderson. Please enjoy:

Lamprey, “Lord Fire Giant” Live at Ceremony of Sludge 2014

Lamprey on Thee Facebooks

Lamprey on Bandcamp

Ceremony of Sludge on Thee Facebooks

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Ape Machine to Release Live at Freak Valley May 26; West Coast Tour on Now

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 13th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

ape machine

Underrated Portland heavy rockers Ape Machine kicked off a West Coast tour last night at the Star Theater in their hometown. The run will take them down through California and into Texas for South by Southwest and then back up to Seattle over the next couple weeks with stops in Arizona along the way. Kind of standard procedure for Ape Machine by this time, as they seem to bust out West Coast dates on the regular. They’re still supporting 2013’s right-on-the-money Mangled by the Machine (review here), but they’ll have a new live record, Live at Freak Valley, out through Ripple Music in May as well.

They’re also gearing up to record their next studio album, and are promising some new material on this tour, so if you happen to be in their path, it seems like solid reasoning to stay there. We turn to the PR wire for the particulars:

ape machine tour dates

Ape Machine to release Live At Freak Valley LP/DVD set via Ripple Music | US Tour Dates for March (Inc. SXSW appearance)

Ape Machine’s Live At Freak Valley (LP/DVD) to be released on 26th May 2015

Having recently toured the US and Europe in support of their latest full-length album Mangled By The Machine, Portland stoners Ape Machine are set to hit the road this month in support of their new Live LP/DVD combo release Live At Freak Valley on Ripple Music.

The daring new release was filmed and recorded at the Freak Valley Festival in Germany last year; an event that has proven to be a veritable showcase and ‘Who’s Who’ in the brave new world of upcoming psychedelic and heavy stoner-rock bands. The set features Ape Machine’s blistering hour-long performance in front of a sold-out festival crowd and serves up proof that the band lives up to their reputation of captivating and commanding live audiences.

In addition to the upcoming Live at Freak Valley release, Ape Machine has released three critically acclaimed full-length albums, two recent releases of which – Mangled By The Machine and War To Head – were produced by Ikey Owens (Jack White, Mars Volta, Mastodon) who also contributed keyboards to both albums. Owens was slated to produce the band’s fourth full-length this summer before his untimely death this past October while on tour with Jack White. In Ikey Owens’s absence, the band plans to record their next full length this April with long-time friend Jacob Golden producing.

Last year also found Ape Machine touring extensively, sharing the stage with bands such as Motorhead, Helmet, Orange Goblin, Crobot plus many others. This March however the band kicks off their own West Coast tour, bringing their frenzied live show stateside on a trip through SXSW and beyond. (For the full list of dates see below.)

With their Live At Freak Valley release arriving on 26 May, this coming spring tour across the US, a new album in the pipeline and more planned for later in the year, 2015 promises to be busy year for one of the best new bands on the scene.

Tour Dates:
March 13 – Club 66 (Ashland, OR)
March 14 – Cafe Coda (Chico, CA)
March 15 – Audie’s (Fresno, CA)
March 16 – Slide Bar (Fullerton, CA)
March 17 – JR’s (Sierra Vista, AZ)
March 18 – Blue Max (Midland, TX)
March 19 – Eastdown Warehouse (Houston, TX)
March 20 – DIY Spot (Tyler, TX)
March 21 – SXSW Official Showcase on the Monster Energy Stage (Austin, TX)
March 21 – Fuzzed Out (Lola’s) (Ft. Worth, TX)
March 23 – Flycatcher (Tucson, AZ)
March 24 – Casbah (San Diego, CA)
March 25 – The Saloon (Encinitas, CA)
March 26 – El Rio (San Francisco, CA)
March 27 – Black Forest (Eugene, OR)
March 28 – The Mix – (Seattle, WA)

apemachine.com
facebook.com/apemachinemusic
twitter.com/apemachine
youtube.com/user/ApeMachineMusic/videos
instagram.com/apemachinemusic/
ripple-music.com

Ape Machine, “Wear Me Out” from Live at Freak Valley (2015)

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Last Giant Premiere Live Video of “Captain My Captain”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 4th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

last giant

Portland, Oregon’s Last Giant released their debut album, Heavy Habitat, on Feb. 24 through Little One Ate the Big One Records. You might recall the song “Captain My Captain” was premiered here in December. Well, as a lousy American once said, “Fuck it — we’ll do it live.” That guy was a dick, and wrong about everything else, but he had it right in terms of the value of raw performance, and Last Giant are heeding that bit of inadvertent and once-viral wisdom, currently embroiled in a 12-date run around the West/Northwest that had them snowed out in Colorado last night, finds them driving to Idaho for tonight and tomorrow, and wrapping with two shows in Oregon this Friday and Saturday.

A not-insubstantial stint, and no doubt effective in getting the three-piece’s point across. That point? That you can kick ass and enjoy doing it. Tracked by Adam Pike at Toadhouse Recordings, Heavy Habitat was a solo-project in the studio for multi-instrumentalist/vocalist RFK Heise, formerly of System and Station, but live, Heise is joined by bassist Adam Shultz and drummer Matt Wiles, and naturally, the dynamic is different. One can see it in the video below of Last Giant on stage at The Trunk Space in Phoenix, Arizona. As they run through “Captain My Captain” live, Wiles‘ swing can’t help but drive the boogie in Heise‘s guitar and Wiles‘ bass, and the track departs from the intricate layering of its studio incarnation to something more basic that speaks to punkier roots than one might’ve initially heard in its crisp studio presentation.

But I guess that’s the whole point of doing it live. Last Giant will be looking to tour more this summer — including a makeup date for Denver that, since it won’t be March, is probably about 30 percent less likely to see snow — so keep an eye out. In the meantime, this clip comes from last Friday, Feb. 27, which I think counts as “fairly recent” by modern standards. Video is followed by the specifics on the remaining dates of the tour:

Last Giant, “Captain My Captain” Live at The Trunk Space, Phoenix, AZ, 02.27.15

Last Giant remaining current tour dates:
3/4 Flipside Lounge- Pocatello, Id
3/5 Crazy Horse- Boise, Id w/ My New Mistress
3/6 Lone Pine Cafe- Baker City, OR w/ guests
3/7 Foggy Notion- Portland, OR w/ Fortune Club + Human

Last Giant on Thee Facebooks

Heavy Habitat on iTunes

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Big Business Added to Headliners for Stumpfest IV in Portland, OR

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 3rd, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

big business

Yes, the news here is that Big Business will headline the Saturday night of Portland, Oregon’s Stumpfest IV, but the sometimes-duo, sometimes-trio, one-time-a-four-piece outfit are also heading out on a full run of the US between the end of this month and the end of next month, and that includes dates on that little ol’ tour that Clutch and Mastodon have kicking. The moral of the story? Big Business are keeping good company all the way around.

That’s certainly the case at Stumpfest IV, where they join YOB and Danava among the headliners and a lineup that also includes Lecherous GazeSandriderNorskaGraves at Sea and so on, for three nights of heavy and what I understand is a healthy dose of “bro love.” Fair enough.

You should read what the PR wire says. All the cool kids are doing it:

stumpfest 2015

STUMPFEST: BIG BUSINESS Confirmed As Saturday Headliner; Individual-Day Tickets Now Available For All Three Days

In 2015, the “fantastic amalgam of music, bro love and art” returns to Mississippi Studios in Portland, Oregon on April 23-25. Hosted by none other than the beloved Stump sisters, the three-day festival is more stacked than ever. As of today we can finally reveal that BIG BUSINESS will headline Sunday, April 25th–pulling double-duty after opening for Clutch and Mastodon at The Roseland Theater downtown and giving the Stumpfest crowd an intimate performance.

They are joined by fellow headliners YOB, LORD DYING, DANAVA and many more.

Three-day passes for Stumpfest IV are now SOLD OUT, but you can purchase individual day passes for $15 at the following links:

THURSDAY 4/23 (DANAVA, LORD DYING, LECHEROUS GAZE, BLACK PUSSY, SONS OF HUNS & PRIZEHOG)

FRIDAY 4/24 (YOB, INTRONAUT, AUTHOR & PUNSHER, GRAVES AT SEA & MUSCLE AND MARROW)

SATURDAY 4/25 (BIG BUSINESS, SANDRIDER, NORSKA, RAJAS & BILLIONS AND BILLIONS)

Big Business on tour:
March 30, 2015 – THREE LINKS – Dallas, TX
March 31, 2015 – RED 7 – Austin, TX w/Skycrawler
April 01, 2015 – WALTERS DOWNTOWN – Houston, TX
April 02, 2015 – SIBERIA – New Orleans, LA
April 4, 2015 – THE CRYING WOLF – Nashville, TN
April 06, 2015 – NEPTUNE’S PARLOR – Raleigh, NC W/BIRDS OF AVALON
April 07, 2015 – OTTOBAR – Baltimore, MD, USA
April 08, 2015 – UNDERGROUND ARTS – Black Box – Philadelphia, PA
April 09, 2015 – THE STUDIO AT WEBSTER HALL – New York, NY
April 10, 2015 – BUG JAR – Rochester, NY
April 12, 2015 – GARRISON – Toronto, ON
April 13, 2015 – THE CROFOOT – Pike Room – Pontiac, MI w/ We Are Hex
April 14, 2015 – Beat Kitchen – Chicago, IL w/ We Are Hex
w/ Clutch & Mastodon:
April 16th–St. Paul, MN at Myth
April 17th–Winnipeg, Canada at Burton Cummings Theater
April 18th–Saskatoon, Canada at O’Brians Event Center
April 19th–Edmonton, Canada at Expo Centre
April 21– Calgary, Canada at Macewan Hall
April 23–Vancouver, Canada at Commodore Ballroom
April 24–Vancouver, Canada at Commodore Ballroom
April 25–Portland, OR at Roseland Theater
April 26–Seattle, WA at Showbox Sodo
April 28–Oakland, CA at Fox Theater

facebook.com/STUMPFEST777
mississippistudios.com
southerncrosspr.com

Big Business, Battlefields Forever (2013)

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Young Hunter Begin Recording New Album

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 2nd, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

young hunter amp

Oregon-by-way-of-Arizona outfit Young Hunter announced over the weekend that they have begun tracking their next full-length at Toadhouse Recording in Portland. At this point, not much more has been said than that as regards a title, tracks, or even who is in the band, which was a seven-piece when their debut, Stone Tools (discussed here), was released in 2012, prior to guitarist/vocalist Benjamin Blake relocating to the Pacific Northwest from the desert he’d previously called home.

The band’s last release was the three-song Embers at the Foot of Dark Mountain EP that arrived first on its own digitally late in 2013 and then as one of 2014’s best short releases in a limited split tape with Ohioan (review here), whose drone-folk experimentalism and Swansian bitterness complemented the emotional depth of sonic weight of Young Hunter‘s “Welcome to Nothing,” “Trail of Tears” and “Dreamer,” which built on the distorted desert impulses Stone Tools laid out while also sounding fuller and more assured, the three songs bleeding together as one longer, dynamic work, as smooth in its flow as it was ranging in its impact. Whether that material is an indication of where Young Hunter might go sonically on the upcoming full-length is unknown; that EP was a significant-enough shift from the prior full-length that it seems pointless to hazard a guess.

Those who’ve been fortunate enough to see them over the last few months in Portland might be better able to speculate. Young Hunter have been playing shows with increasing regularity taking time to put together the new band. Two dates in January found them alongside GalateaLamprey and Johanna Warren, and on Feb. 24 — presumably after the recording is done — they’re set to take the stage with Disenchanter as part of Portland’s “Heavy Tuesdays” series at Rotture. One assumes more will follow once the album, whatever it’s called and whenever it lands, comes out.

Hopefully more to come as they continue the process leading up to the release. Their statement, recounted in full below as posted on Jan. 31, is suitably minimal:

young-hunter-lava-lamp

Today, we begin recording our next album.

Young Hunter on Thee Facebooks

Young Hunter on Bandcamp

Young Hunter, Embers at the Foot of Dark Mountain (2014)

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Witch Mountain Welcome New Vocalist Kayla Dixon and Bassist Justin Brown

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 29th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

witch mountain

Several days ago, Portland, Oregon, doomers Witch Mountain posted the above image on their Facebook page as a way of teasing the fact that they are once again a complete four-piece. Today, the parties joining with founding guitarist Rob Wrong and drummer Nathan Carson have been officially announced as vocalist Kayla Dixon and bassist Justin Brown.

Formerly based in Ohio, Dixon comes to Witch Mountain via Cleveland metallers Demons Within. She steps into the vocalist role in place of Uta Plotkin, who over the course of Witch Mountain‘s three post-reactivationkayla dixon full-lengths on Profound Lore, 2011’s South of Salem (review here), 2012’s Cauldron of the Wild (review here) and last year’s Mobile of Angels (review here), became one of doom’s most recognizable voices, with a soulful, bluesy inflection that has already left an influential stamp on the genre. When Plotkin announced her departure from the band prior to their tour in Sept. with Nick Turner’s Hawkwind, it was a shock but only made the lyrics to Mobile of Angels tracks like “Can’t Settle,” “Your Corrupt Ways (Sour the Hymn)” and “The Shape Turth Takes” even more visceral.

In an interview here last fall, Carson speculated that it could be years before the right voice was found to fill the position. That the band was aware and mindful of the task before them serves as further endorsement of Dixon‘s ability and the potential for their continued progress as a group with her on board. Bassist Justin Brown enters the lineup having spent the last several years in the two-bass/no-guitar trio Lamprey, from whom a follow-up long-player to 2012’s The Burden of Beasts EP (review here) is expected witch mountainsometime this year, its coming heralded by a recent video for the track “Iron Awake” that was featured here.

Witch Mountain are slated to take part in an upcoming Black Sabbath tribute that will also feature Kylesa and Wo Fat, among others, though at this time it’s not clear when their contribution was recorded or who was involved. They have toured extensively in support of each of their three records since returning from a decade’s hiatus, and the first road test of the new lineup will be a run of shows alongside YOB following that outfit’s stint with Enslaved in March. With congratulations to Brown and Dixon on landing what can only be considered as enviable as a gig playing doom can get by playing in Witch Mountain, the tour dates follow here:

YOB + Witch Mountain
3/21 New York, NY @ Gramercy Theatre w/ Enslaved, YOB, Ecstatic Vision
3/22 Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer w/ Enslaved, YOB, Ecstatic Vision
3/25 Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter
3/26 Raleigh, NC @ King’s Barcade
3/27 Johnson City, TN @ The Hideaway
3/28 Atlanta, GA @ The Earl
3/29 Memphis, TN @ Hi-Tone
3/30 New Orleans, LA @ Siberia
3/31 Houston, TX @ Walter’s
4/01 Austin, TX @ Red 7
4/03 Albuquerque, NM @ Launch Pad
4/04 Tucson, AZ @ The Flycatcher
4/05 Los Angeles, CA @ Los Globos
4/07 San Francisco, CA @ Golden Bull
4/08 Sacramento, CA @ Press Club
4/10 Seattle, WA @ Victory
4/11 Portland, OR @ Star Theater

Witch Mountain on Thee Facebooks
Witch Mountain on Twitter
Profound Lore Records

Witch Mountain, Mobile of Angels (2014)

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Video Premiere: Serial Hawk, “Desolate” Live at Ceremony of Sludge 2014

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 28th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

serial hawk at ceremony of sludge

Seattle trio Serial Hawk have a new album coming soon. Last year, before releasing their Lying in Wait 7″ in the fall, the three-piece made the trip to Portland, Oregon, to take part in the Ceremony of Sludge festival, along with LampreyHoly GroveBlackwitch PuddingSiouxDisenchanter and others. Over the last couple months, parts of each act’s set have been premiered hereSerial Hawk played the first night of the fest, March 7, with LampreyTowers, and Beard of Bees at Club 21 in Portland, and the video was filmed by Cole Boggess and Justin Anderson with audio by Tim Burke.

The song is called “Desolate,” and it comes as a preview of what the new Serial Hawk LP holds in store in following up the 2014 single, 2012’s Buried in the Gray EP and the band’s first demo, released in 2011. Drummer Sean Bulkley, who was announced as the band’s drummer at the end of last Jan., does the honors in starting the song with a persistent tom rhythm that holds firm as the guitar and bass rumble to life. By 90 seconds in, a heavy foundation is established, and the rolling riffery that takes hold from there is both massive and open, guitarist Will Bassin topping the crash and distortion with raw shouts while bassist Adam Holbrook drives home a groove to which even the camera can’t seem to resist nodding.

A big slowdown brings about some choice feedback-laden deconstruction as Serial Hawk build the track up only to tear it apart again. Their appearance at Ceremony of Sludge was the first night of a West Coast tour that lasted two weeks (they did a full US tour in the Fall as well), and it seems pretty safe to say that run got off to a good start.

More on the new Serial Hawk album hopefully to come as we near the release. Enjoy “Desolate” in the meantime, with thanks to Justin Brown and Ceremony of Sludge:

Serial Hawk, “Desolate” Live at Ceremony of Sludge 2014 in Portland, OR

Serial Hawk on Thee Facebooks

Serial Hawk on Twitter

Serial Hawk on Instagram

Serial Hawk on Bandcamp

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Process Black Issues First Demo

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 22nd, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

process black

Any new endeavor from Aaron Edge is welcome by me. The many-banded guitarist — RoarethiamthethornRote Hexe, etc. — was last heard from in 2013 when he joined forces with YOB‘s Mike Scheidt and his former Brothers of the Sonic Cloth bandmate Tad Doyle for Lumbar‘s The First and Last Days of Unwelcome (review here), Edge has a new project going (always, it seems) with vocalist Tim Singer of Deadguy and Kiss it Goodbye. The band is called Process BlackEdge first discussed teaming with Singer here around the time the Lumbar was released, and today, Demo 2015 has made its way to the public as the first audio from the band.

You can buy a download if you have an extra $666 handy, but more likely you’ll want to keep it to streaming, which you can do via a Bandcamp page set up with astronaut-centric design work from Edge himself. As for the sound of the demo’s three tracks, it’s raw noise rock with Edge on guitar and bass, Singer on vocals (go figure) and Brock Lowry (Craft Spells) on drums, but tonally thick enough to stand up, and the recording quality is way more “album” than “demo.” Reportedly there’s more to come.

Until then, here’s info and audio:

process black demo 2015

Process Black, we have liftoff!

This, a demo of our first three songs, is done. We are going to pass this ’round to a few record labels and see what kind of trouble it stirs up. It’s heavy, dynamic, and jarring… and there’s seven other unheard tracks in the bag and ready for the next record.

Guitar and bass recorded by Aaron D.C. Edge at AlphaBaphomet Studios in Portland, OR. Drums recorded by Derek Moree at The Red Room in Seattle, WA. Vocals recorded by Joe Boldizar at Retro City Studios, Philadelphia PA. Demo cover designed by Aaron Edge.

released 22 January 2015

Process Black:
Tim Singer: throat
Brock Lowry: percussion
Aaron Edge: strings

Members of:
Kiss it Goodbye, Craft Spells, Roareth, Deadguy, iamthethorn, No Escape, Lumbar, Cascabel.

More news when more news is known. Thank you.

https://processblack.bandcamp.com/releases
https://www.facebook.com/thelumbarendeavor

Process Black, Demo 2015

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