Hound Premiere “Over the Edge” from Out of Space

Posted in audiObelisk on November 18th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster


“Over the Edge” is the closing track on Hound‘s sophomore full-length, Out of Space. The Philadelphia natives’ second album is set to release Nov. 27 on SRA Records, and while “Over the Edge” doesn’t exactly capture its entire breadth, it’s righteous enough to stand in for the whole and definitely placed last for the broader impression it leaves of what the trio do. As to that itself, their methods vary some over Out of Space‘s nine inclusions, which are quick to show off their punker roots on opener “Emotional Collapse” and the subsequent “Mortality Jam” — which kicks off a five-song sequence of cuts under three minutes long — but the three-piece remain steeped in raw, heavy rock and roll throughout, calling to mind a similar creative trajectory as some of Small Stone‘s roster over the last decade, bands like Suplecs and Roadsaw, whose roots in more aggressive fare one way or another have led them to weighted grooves and a more riff-happy modus operandi.

Comprised of guitarist/vocalist Perry Shall, bassist Patrick Hickey and drummer Chris Wilson (also Ted Leo and the Pharmacists), Hound‘s style feels deceptively straightforward superficially, but the more one digs into the album and uncovers the organ buried in the mix of “Intro” and “Cold Blooded,” which follows — it’s worth noting that hound-out-of-space“Intro” is actually the longer of the two — and the plays of tempo that occur between the later “Super Junkie of Being…” and “Walking Curse,” the more complex Out of Space shows itself to be. Shall, Hickey and Wilson have that rawness at their core, but their second LP finds them in the process of building on top of that stylistically and to engaging effect. A strong undercurrent of ’90s alt hard rock shows itself in “Walkin’ the Fine Line,” but there’s a more modern heaviness to it, as well as a bit of shuffle, that bring it into the all-encompassing context of the heavy ’10s. And when it comes around, “Over the Edge” arrives as a pure moment of riff hedonism, a chugging, crawling, slow-motion nod that Shall buries his voice beneath to make it sound even huger, not that it was hurting anyway.

It’s not trying to change the world, it’s not trying to fix something stylistically that isn’t broken, “Over the Edge” is just tilting its figurative head back and riffing out, and sometimes that’s exactly what you need most. I’m thrilled today to be hosting the track for its streaming premiere, and hope that you get as much of a kick out of it as I have. Please find it on the player below, followed by some comment from Shall on “Over the Edge” and more info on the album from the PR wire.


Perry Shall on “Over the Edge”:

“Over the Edge’ is a song I wrote and recorded a demo of two years before some insane people thought the world was supposed to end (in 2012). The final version you’re hearing is exactly what I wanted it to end up sounding like. Long, droney, stream of conscious type of feeling.”

Philadelphia underground rock band HOUND will release its new album Out of Space on November 27 via SRA Records. The power trio — guitarist / vocalist Perry Shall, drummer Chris Wilson (also of Ted Leo and the Pharmacists) and bassist Patrick Hickey — whose sound has been described as “just the right combination of attack and restraint” recorded the album at Studio 4 in Conshohocken, PA (Title Fight, Braid). Out of Space is the follow up to HOUND’s 2014 debut, Out of Time.

HOUND will throw a Philadelphia album release party for Out of Space on November 27 at Everybody Hits. Special guests include The Kominas and Dangerbird. For full details, visit this location.

Track listing:
1.) Emotional Collapse
2.) Mortality Jam
3.) Walkin’ the Fine Line
4.) Intro
5.) Cold Blooded
6.) Super Junkie of Being
7.) Stone Carvin’ Man
8.) Walking Curse
9.) Over the Edge

Hound on Thee Facebooks

Hound on Bandcamp

SRA Records on Thee Facebooks

SRA Records

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Hound Release Out of Space Nov. 27

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 10th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

hound (Photo by Sara Willard)

Out of Space follows Hound‘s 2014 debut, Out of Time, so yeah, it would seem the Philly heavy rockers are working on a theme. Fair enough. SRA Records is handling the new album, and to herald its arrival, in addition to a release show Nov. 27, Hound will play two gigs Nov. 20 and 21. The first, as one might expect, is in their hometown. Underground Arts is the venue. The second is a bit more of a surprise, as it seems they’ll hoof it down to New Orleans on Nov. 21 to play The Howlin’ Wolf. That’s a hell of a trip to make in a day.

I mean, I guess it’s possible even if they’re not flying. The Googles says it’s an 18-hour drive from one venue to the other, and technically that’s less than a full day’s 24 hours, but not an easy trip by car. Very rock and roll, either way. Sounds like crazy fun.

Haven’t seen any audio come out from Out of Space yet, but you can stream Out of Time on the Bandcamp player under the PR wire whathaveyou below:

hound out of space

HOUND to Release New Album ‘Out of Space’ November 27

Philly Hard Rock Dogs Hammer Home the Heavy on Beastly New LP

Philadelphia underground rock band HOUND will release its new album Out of Space on November 27 via SRA Records. The power trio — guitarist / vocalist Perry Shall, drummer Chris Wilson (also of Ted Leo and the Pharmacists) and bassist Patrick Hickey — whose sound has been described as “just the right combination of attack and restraint” recorded the album at Studio 4 in Conshohocken, PA (Title Fight, Braid). Out of Space is the follow up to HOUND’s 2014 debut, Out of Time.

“To me, ‘Out of Space’ is like, if Motörhead’s Stiff Records-era songs were written by someone who was stuck living in Philadelphia their whole life,” says Shall. “The record channels hard rock influenced by the ideas of time and space. Space being Philadelphia”

Led by Shall (a visual artist who’s done album covers for JEFF the Brotherhood and Diarrhea Planet and made videos for Tweens and Pujol among others), HOUND is a band that understands the deadeningly powerful effect of hammering down the riff. Reaching into heavy psychedelic blues and blasting it into the 21st century, the group mates metallic heft with punk’s economy and tempo in a coupling that evokes the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. On Out of Space, HOUND sweeps aside the glossy metal of the moment with waves of gritty fuzz, pushing swirling volume through battered amps. Admirers of vintage rock ‘n’ roll won’t be disappointed.

HOUND will throw a Philadelphia album release party for Out of Space on November 27 at Everybody Hits. Special guests include The Kominas and Dangerbird. For full details, visit this location.

Track listing:
1.) Emotional Collapse
2.) Mortality Jam
3.) Walkin’ the Fine Line
4.) Intro
5.) Cold Blooded
6.) Super Junkie of Being
7.) Stone Carvin’ Man
8.) Walking Curse
9.) Over the Edge


Hound, Out of Time (2014)

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Ripple Music Reveals Cover Art for The Second Coming of Heavy: Chapter Two

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

I swear one of these days — and one of these days soon — I’ll be putting up a vinyl review for Ripple Music‘s The Second Coming of Heavy: Chapter One, which launched their series of underground-scouring splits earlier this year by righteously pairing Geezer and Borracho, with riffy results. Not that it’s hurt sales any. I think the thing was gone before it was actually out. But it will happen. And it will need to happen even sooner because Ripple‘s already got the follow-up installment, The Second Coming of Heavy: Chapter Two, in progress.

The Joseph Rudell cover art for The Second Coming of Heavy: Chapter Two has been unveiled, and in addition to lining up with Chapter One when placed next to it, it shows off a lot more of the world in which it’s all set. This time around, Pittsburgh’s Supervoid and Minneapolis’ Red Desert will represent Heavy’s second coming, and much like the cover itself, it’s cool to see the series working quickly to expand stylistically.

Word on a release date? Not yet from what I’ve seen, but I’d guess not before December or early next year. I’ll let you know when I hear more:

the second coming of heavy chapter 2

Our “Second Coming of Heavy” series got off to a banging start with an instant sell out of all Editions of Chapter One. Now Chapter Two is heading our way. But before we get there, it’s time to release our “reserve” copies of Chapter One. These are copies we held onto in case of any lost postage or damages. Now we’ll let them go.

Sorry, no Resurrection Edition are left, but we have a scant few Risen OBI and Black Virgin Editions. This is your last chance to get onboard the Second Coming of Heavy series before Chapter Two comes out. And remember, all chapters in the series have interlocking spine art, which lines up to create one killer image!


Geezer & Borracho, The Second Coming of Heavy: Chapter One (2015)

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King Dead Premiere “Firmament” from Debut LP Woe and Judgment

Posted in audiObelisk on October 14th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

king dead (Photo by Shy Kennedy)

Pennsylvania mostly-instrumentalists King Dead are set to make their full-length debut any day now. Really, any day. Their first album, Woe and Judgment, will be released digitally before too long as part of a fundraising effort to support a 2016 vinyl release, so yeah, it’s coming very soon. The three-piece impressed with the spacious post-metal textures of their first demo (review here) last year, but as the stream below of the track “Firmament” — the complete, Red Sparowes-esque title is “The Firmament of Heaven Opened, and the Flood Waters Were upon Them” — the scope has expanded considerably even from where it started. With three tracks constructed to fit on two sides, King Dead — four-string bassist Kevin Vanderhoof, six-string bassist Will McGrath and no-strings drummer Steve Truglio — push themselves into an encompassing rumble that still seems to hold onto a human core even as it lumbers between airy doom and rawer, thoroughly-reverbed noise.

When I asked Truglio, whom it has been my pleasure to know personally and professionally for years and years and years at this point, for a quote about the song to use with the post, he had this to say:

“We’ve been opening our set with this lately, and it’s funny that people seem to think it’s our soundcheck for the first couple minutes. Yeah, shit’s gettin’ pretty weird.”

king dead woe and judgment“Shit’s gettin’ pretty weird” is a fitting summary of what’s happening on “The Firmament of Heaven Opened, and the Flood Waters Were upon Them,” but hardly the whole story. True enough, the first couple minutes are dedicated to establishing a kind of foundational churn, the ambient experimental core on which the song’s rollout will take place. Gradually, McGrath, Vanderhoof and Truglio establish a slow roll and embark on a linear build that works in stages across the remainder of the song’s eight-plus minutes. The cut with which it shares the intended side A of Woe and Judgment, “A Monument to Decline,” is led into by a finale of feedback that gives way to a more immediate stomp, the drums thudding and the strings jangling in echoes like sliding footsteps as the initial stage of the track gets underway. A midsection break veers into softer but still hypnotic spaces, but they finish with more rhythmically intense crunch, vaguely attributable to a Neurosis influence, but given its own context through King Dead‘s by-then well established mood.

As for side B, it’s pretty much a universe of its own with the 20-minute “The Coward, the Thieving Liar” consuming its entirety, but sure enough the song does break down into somewhat more manageable pieces around halfway through, shifting between sample-laden ’90s-style atmospheric sludge, abrasive noise, Floydian psychedelics and a final build — complete with what seems to be some vocals — that gives way to feedback and amp buzz to finish out. All told, it’s an immersive 37-minute stretch, but lack of pretense prevails, and King Dead‘s debut long-player finds them aesthetically locked in and proffering a balance between the raw and the lush, with a patience underlying that only makes the songs seem more methodical.

Get a handle on “The Firmament of Heaven Opened, and the Flood Waters Were upon Them” on the player below. The album will be available through their Bandcamp. More on the vinyl release when I hear it:

King Dead have been conspicuoulsy haunting the Stroudsburg PA area lately. Bass players Will McGrath and Kevin Vanderhoof, recruited New Jersey Transplant Steve Truglio on drums last summer, and have begun to wander around the NEPA/NJ area. Their debut record on the cusp of release, was recorded LIVE in their practice and performance home venue at The Living Room in Stroudsburg by Dave Reiser of ROCK HARD STUDIOS. They definitely have their own sound.

Call it sludge, doom, or what we like to say is spaghetti western doom sludge, it sure doesnt sound like yer typical heavy 3 piece band these days. With virtually no vocals, aside from one song(not on the record) and a whistle solo in another, its all about dynamics and the building tempos. Creepy, dreary, sleepy and melodic riffs layered over deep bottom and pounding drums.

King Dead on Thee Facebooks

King Dead on Bandcamp

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Wizard Eye Premiere “Stoneburner” from Self-Titled Album

Posted in audiObelisk on October 1st, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

wizard eye

Philly trio Wizard Eye issue their self-titled sophomore outing via Black Monk Records on Oct. 10. And yeah, it’s about riffs. And yeah, it’s about being heavy. And yeah, it’s about that crusty kind of vibe in the vocals of guitarist/thereminist Erik Caplan and bassist Dave Shahriari. It’s definitely about those things. But for me, listening to the album’s nine-track/53-minute unfurling, it’s even more about the roll. Not to say Caplan, Shahriari and drummer Mike Scarpone are entirely singular in their focus the whole time — it’s not like they’re doing the same thing over and over, in other words — but the overarching nod of Wizard Eye‘s Wizard Eye is so prevalent that no matter where they might go musically, it seems to unite the songs in a singular purpose. It turns tonal thickness into a roiling sludge goo and then serves that up chunky-style on a two-sided platter that, for those who’ve ever worshiped a riff, should be an essential pilgrimage.

Beginning with the thud-led noise of the instrumental “Eye of the Deep,” Wizard Eye work quickly to justify the anticipation for a follow-up to their 2010 debut, Orbital Rites. “Eye of the Deep” establishes the first of the record’s irresistible grooves and feeds directly into “Flying Falling,” which puts the bass tone front and center before slicking-out perfectly-paced nod-fodder, Caplan and Shahriari combining forces vocally as they do at several points in higher and lower-register gruffness. In addition to the low-end wah that emerges later, “Flying Falling” introduces another key element in the band’s arsenal — Caplan‘s theremin, which adds weirdo flavor to the late solo section and adds a spacey vibe to the album overall without actually pushing the band into space rock indulgence. Scarpone again drives the groove ahead on “Phase Return,” and Caplan and Shahriari alternate vocals between that song and the subsequent “Graybeard,” both cuts brought together by a foundation of swing that’s refreshing
for being so un-subgenred in its complete lack of pretense.

WIZARD-EYE-WIZARD-EYEFront to back, Wizard Eye gets down to business. The maybe Corrosion of Conformity-referencing “Drowning Daydream” (they did have a song called “C.O.C.” on Orbital Rites) follows, drawing the listener deeper into an instrumental languidity that winds up with a touch more swirl than they’ve yet shown, but the oddball “My Riposte is Like Lightning” — the shortest track at 3:42 and even odder for how straightforward it is — snaps back to attention ahead of the semi-plugged nine-minute “Nullarbor,” which moves from early ritualism as it nears its midpoint into the record’s most satisfying march, announced first by the bass and soon taken on by drums and guitar as well. Caplan seems in conversation with the self-titled Clutch record in his shouts on “Thunderbird Divine,” but by then the context is such that the song is entirely Wizard Eye‘s — they’ve taken stoner nod and shaped it to their will, sounding jammy without actually doing much jamming, just chill, chill, chill in its beefy swagger and readiness to vibe out into a perpetuity undercut by the harsh reality of a five-minute runtime.

What’s left to do but close out with an eight-minute affirmation of method? Ain’t exactly like they’ve been screwing around the whole time, but “Stoneburner,” which caps, feels especially well suited to its position. It doesn’t quite speak for the totality of the record — Wizard Eye don’t really give it all away in any single song; it’s an album’s album to be sure — but in its blend of a virulent hook cast into some deep region of subspace on an internal wide-band frequency and how-do-they-get-it-to-move-like-that riffing, “Stoneburner” is a more than worthy freak flag for Wizard Eye to fly on their way out, Caplan returning to the theremin one last time in the final jam to give further depth to what’s already dug in far enough to come out on the other side. And in case I haven’t yet mixed metaphors enough to give an impression of just how trippy this shit is: rutabaga.

It’s felt like a long wait for Wizard Eye‘s second to arrive. Somehow, when I put the record on for another go, time doesn’t seem to matter at all.

Get yourself a piece with the track premiere for “Stoneburner” below. PR wire info follows. Enjoy:

Philadelphia psychedelic rock trio, WIZARD EYE, will release its self-titled new full-length this Fall via Black Monk Records. Recorded in three days at Haddon Heights, New Jersey’s Gradwell House Studios with the imminently irascible and talented Steve Poponi behind the board and mastered by Dave Downham, the long-awaited follow-up to the band’s 2010 Orbital Rites debut takes WIZARD EYE’s signature brand of mind-bending riffs and kaleidoscopic soundscapes to a new level of titanic glory. A fusion of bottom-heavy grooves, fiery fuzz, churning bass, otherworldly effects and raw vocals with roots still planted firmly into the lysergic soil of ‘70s acts like Hawkwind, Budgie, Blue Cheer, Captain Beyond, Motörhead and Black Sabbath, Wizard Eye shows the band operating at the pinnacle of its creative and musical abilities.

Wizard Eye will be released via Black Monk Records on October 10th, 2015 digitally and on limited-edition swirled vinyl.

Erik Caplan – guitar, theremin, vocals
Dave Shahriari – bass, vocals
Mike Scarpone – drums, percussion

Wizard Eye on Thee Facebooks

Wizard Eye on Bandcamp

US preorder

International preorder

Black Monk Records

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Michael Rudolph Cummings Announces Fall Tour

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 25th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster


Incidentally, my favorite memory to-date of going to a local show since I moved to the Boston area was when Mike Cummings of Backwoods Payback — who operates these days under the somewhat more formal Michael Rudolph Cummings banner, sometimes with the backing band The Souvenirs — played with Jim Healey at Radio in Somerville (review here). The show itself was really cool, downstairs at the venue which like so many others is defunct at this point, but afterwards a few people stayed and sat around a table and all just kind of chatted and hung out and while that kind of thing is usually terrifying to me, I actually really, really enjoyed it.

While we’re free-associating, I tried very hard to buy Radio when I first moved north from New Jersey. Was back and forth with the woman who owned it and everything. Things were moving forward and next I knew, she sold it out to someone else and skipped town, never to be heard from again. Since then, living here has more or less been a succession of, “Hey this place is for sale” and nothing coming of it. I’ve been dying to get in somewhere but unable to make it happen. Mostly because I don’t have money, I suppose. If I could roll up with a wad of cash, I expect the reception would be different. In the meantime, venues close, those that don’t just suck and put no effort into running shows, and I’ve gotten a job, cut my hair, struggled to find time for things that matter to me, like music, my relationship with my wife, my family, and so on. Normal existence, near as I can tell.

Sorry. I got off track. Cummings, with his band, released the More Barn EP earlier this year and will tour — solo, I believe — in Nov. headed south from his homebase in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Dates, links and the EP stream from Bandcamp follow here:

michael rudolph cummings fall tour

michael Rudolph cummings Fall Tour 2015

hitting the road this fall

traveling with some friends and meeting up with some from across the way…

3 – Kung Fu Necktie, Philadelphia PA wAmigo The Devil, Kermit Lÿman III, Patrick Shannon (hold down the ocean)
4 – The Hook Up, Virginia Beach VA w/Amigo The Devil
5 – A Tasting Room, Wilmington NC w/Amigo The Devil
6 – Bone Lick BBQ, Atlanta GA w/Amigo The Devil
7 – TBA, Nashville TN w/ Rob Snyder
8 – The Cave, Chapel Hill NC w/Brian McGee (Plow United)
27 – Ortliebs, Philadelphia PA w/Thee Nosebleeds



Michael Rudolph Cummings and the Souvenirs, More Barn EP (2015)

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Rosetta West Coast Tour Starts Oct. 8

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


Well, there goes Rosetta again, outworking damn near everybody. The Philly post-metallers offered up the textures of their fifth album, Quintessential Ephemera (review here) this past summer, and starting Oct. 8, they’ll embark on a West Coast tour to support the record alongside Braveyoung. Self-released as a name-your-price download and also issued on LP and CD through War Crime Recordings and Init RecordsQuintessential Ephemera marked a decade since Rosetta‘s debut and their first album as a five-piece, but more than that it just continued their string of quality output that’s been reliable and woefully taken for granted for most of their tenure.

Seriously. Show up and buy a shirt. 1,000-plus gigs later, I feel like we all owe them that much:

rosetta tour poster

Rosetta Confirms West Coast Tour

ROSETTA has announced a run of West Coast tour dates this October, with long-time friends Braveyoung, in support of their newly released Quintessential Ephemera LP, independently released by the band themselves.

With a ten-date run confirmed, ROSETTA will begin their 1st tour of the West Coast since Summer 2010 in Bellingham, WA on October 8th, followed by shows in Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, Eugene, Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Tucson through October 17th.

ROSETTA Tour Dates:
10/8 Bellingham, WA – The Shakedown
10/9 Vancouver, BC – Media Club
10/10 Seattle, WA – The Highline
10/11 Portland, OR – High Water Mark
10/12 Eugene, OR – The Wandering Goat
10/13 Sacramento, CA – The Press Club
10/14 Oakland, CA – The Golden Bull
10/15 Los Angeles, CA – Complex
10/16 San Diego, CA – The Hideout
10/17 Tucson, AZ – (Secret Show) *
* no Braveyoung

The tour dates are the just the latest installment of news and media coverage surrounding ROSETTA’s new Quintessential Ephemera LP.

Quintessential Ephemera is now available — digitally via the band for “pay what you wish” HERE, North America CD is available HERE, N America 2x LP available HERE, Europe CD/2x LP + Japan extended CD HERE.

Mike Armine – vocals, electronics
Dave Grossman – bass, vocals
Eric Jernigan – guitar, vocals
B.J. McMurtrie – drums, vocals, ‘barsista’
Matt Weed – guitar, piano, vocals


Rosetta, Quintessential Ephemera (2015)

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Monolith Wielder Announce Fall Release for Self-Titled Debut

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 21st, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

Pittsburgh newcomers Monolith Wielder have announced they’ll release their self-titled debut full-length this fall. The album was recorded by Jason Jouver (Don Caballero) and mastered by Jack Endino (WindhandHigh on Fire, etc.), and some preliminary audio has been posted in the form of unmastered mixes for “Angels Hide” and “Illumination,” which you can hear below. The four-piece position themselves between stoner and doom, which is fair enough, and get underway with some familiar but welcome swing and a touch of grunge-style aggression.

You can hear the latter particularly on “Angels Hide,” which is longer and slower than its counterpart as Monolith Wielder make sure to show off a bit of variety in the songwriting while still keeping it universally heavy. Their backstory and the audio follow:

monolith wielder

Monolith Wielder was formed in Pittsburgh, PA in 2014 when guitarist Justin Gizzi (Molasses Barge) approached singer/guitarist Gero von Dehn (ZOM, Von Dane) about forming a new, heavy project. With the schooled and skilled Ben Zerbe (Mandrake Project) on drums the band had a foundation with which to lay forth doom laden riffs lathered with stoner rock grooves. Rounding out the four piece would be bass man Ray Ward, formerly the six string axe man in Dope Lake.

With the lineup intact the band went about writing their first collection of powerful, earthshaking jams rich in honesty and intensity.

Spring of 2015 found Monolith Wielder entering Plus/Minus Studio to record the debut full length. The capable hands and ears of Jason Jouver were behind the console to oversee the heavy storm that he would be tasked with corralling. The final step of mastering the record would be handled by Jack Endino, who recorded classics by Nirvana, Soundgarden, High on Fire as well as the latest by Windhand.

The self titled Monolith Wielder debut has an expected released in the fall 2015.

Monolith Wielder shows:
10.21 Brillobox Pittsburgh PA w/ Spirit Caravan & Dirty Streets


Monolith Wielder, “Illumination” (Rough Mix)

Monolith Wielder, “Angels Hide”

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