Posted in Whathaveyou on November 19th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
…And they don’t mean, “Help me get that tree out of my yard” Sandy relief either. They mean like for people who don’t have a house anymore. Good for Ripple Music who continue to couple their love of all things classic, heavy and rockin’ with a desire to do some good in the world. Rare test pressings of Mos Generator and Stone Axe LPs will be going out this week on their eBay store, so make sure you follow the link to check it out. Yes, I’ve already added it to my “Watch List.”
Charity Auction for Superstorm Sandy Relief, Package Deal for Both STONE AXE and MOS GENERATOR LP Test Pressings
Continuing with the company tradition of giving back to the community, Ripple Music will auction a pair of extremely Rare Original Test Pressings in one package. Stone Axe: Captured Live! and Mos Generator Nomads vinyl are being made available with proceeds going to Superstorm Sandy Relief.
Only 5 copies of each test pressings exist, and these are the only one’s being made available to the public! You can jump into the auction, win a cool heavy rock collectible and benefit the agencies that commit money and manpower to lend a helping hand. To do so, just visit us at theRipple Music Ebay Store! The auction will start on Monday, November 19th and end on Monday, November 26th.
The Stone Axe and Mos Generator test press auction is the latest in a growing line of charity auctions that Ripple Music has created. Previously, rare JPT Scare Band, Mos Generator, Stone Axe, and the Heavy Ripples test pressings were auctioned with proceeds going to Gulf Disaster, The Wounded Warrior Fund, Japan Tsunami and the Joplin Tornado disaster relief agencies. With the sacrifices made by the men and women to assist their fellow Americans in need, Ripple founders John Rancik and Todd Severin thought the time was right to release another rare test pressing from their vault and raise money for a worthwhile effort.
Posted in Whathaveyou on October 4th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
You know what’s awesome? Stone Axe songs. It’s a fact. When these dudes get together, they churn out memorable classic rock of a quality level to embarrass even some of the people who made it classic the first time around.
They may have taken a break from writing to let Tony Reed focus on Mon Generator‘s Nomadsalbum (review here) — a worthy cause indeed — but you just knew it wasn’t going to be long before Stone Axe picked up right where they left off.
And so they have, according to the PR wire:
STONE AXE Back In the Writing Process, Aiming at New Full Length in 2013
Afterdispelling break up rumorsearlier in the year, Port Orchard rock n’ roll preservationists, STONE AXE, have announced that writing and recording has resumed for the bands next album. Multi-instrumentalist Tony Reed and singer Dru Brinkerhoff have reconvened in recent weeks to put the final touches on a handful of tunes, as well as sketching out ideas for a new STONE AXE record, the first new material since 2010’s Stone Axe II.
“It’s early in the process,” states Tony Reed on the writing process for the new album, “Dru and I have met a few times to plot out a musical direction for the new full length album. And, in the meantime, we’ve been working on some songs that have been lying around for awhile that may be released as an EP in the near future.”
Though we’re going to have to wait until 2013 before we see a new release from the band, work is progressing at a steady pace. Some of the working titles in the mix include “Fell On Deaf Ears” for the new full length, and for the possible EP, “Lady Switchblade” and “Deep Blue”, a song reminiscent of the epic sci-fi thriller, “The Skylah Rae” from the STONE AXE self-titled album.
Posted in Reviews on September 7th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
It’s as pure an example of heavy rock as I’ve heard in 2012. Washington trio Mos Generator, having been revitalized by guitarist/vocalist/friend of the site Tony Reed after a few years’ successful run in classic rockers Stone Axe, mark their return with Nomads, a collection of varied but straightforward songs that hearken to classic influences, but ultimately emerge as modern, full and engaging. Tonally weighted in Reed’s guitar and Scooter Haslip’s bass but never veering into stonerly fuzz, the nine songs of Nomads are pointed in their lack of pretense, unabashed in their hooks and balanced in both composition and production. The album, also produced by Reed, sees release via ongoing partnership with Ripple Music, which also deluxe-reissued Mos Generator’s self-titled debut earlier this year (review here) and has reissued Stone Axe material as well, and though Reed is a talented vocalist and guitarist and a skilled engineer – anyone who heard his production on, say, Saint Vitus’ Lillie: F-65 can immediately recognize his sound as comes through on Shawn Johnson’s drums – what’s most at the fore in listening to Nomads is the songwriting. Structurally traditional, cuts like “Can’t Get Where I Belong,” “Lonely One Kenobi” and even the more expansive closer “This is the Gift of Nature” wrap themselves around landmark choruses, classic rock hooks given vital presentation. Contrary to the reds and blacks of the cover art and its memento mori crow, the mood of most of the album is relatively light, and it opens upbeat with a strong trio of infectious cuts in “Cosmic Ark,” “Lonely One Kenobi” and “Torches,” keeping a crisp and clean sound throughout that results in an overarching accessibility for everything that follows, including the penultimate title-track, an acoustic interlude that sets up “This is the Gift of Nature” to round out the proceedings. A vinyl structure is evident with a split between the moodier fourth track “Step Up” and the ‘80s street metal riffing of “Solar Angels,” but the latter works as well as the centerpiece of the Nomads CD, a focal point and standout both in style and substance on Mos Generator’s fifth album (that’s counting 2006’s The Vault Sessions) and their first outing since 2008’s Destroy! The Mos Generator compilation.
As the singer, guitarist, producer and main songwriter, Reed is obviously a focal point on Nomads, and his approach to the revived Mos Generator is no different than it ever has been going back to the self-titled. He writes quality heavy rock songs with pop structures, shifts mood effectively and sets up an overall flow despite each track having a distinct personality of its own. “Cosmic Ark,” however, gets underway with an immediate bounce, and it’s Johnson’s drums and Haslip’s bass carrying across the potent groove as Reed relates lyrics about weedian travel through space and time that actually wind up being the most stoner rock facet of the song, and indeed, the album. It’s kind of a curious track in relation to what’s around it, but as the opener it works both because it’s fun and because of the quality of the hook, which gives way to a short bluesy lead and a subdued section of oohs and aahs that set up some of the variety to come later. At 3:31, it’s a classic radio number, and though “Lonely One Kenobi” was selected as the first single from Nomads (video premiere here) – one expects the referential title had something to do with that – “Cosmic Ark” could easily follow as the next. In the meantime, perhaps “Lonely One Kenobi” is a better representation of the album overall, more grounded lyrically and no less catchy than the opener. Reed seems to be referencing Dio-era Sabbath in the verse, bringing his voice up in the third line in a fashion similar to “Wishing Well” from the Heaven and Hell album, and that’s not the last ‘80s metal nod to come, but the song is undeniably Mos Generator’s own. One of the longer tracks at just over five minutes, its pulse is quick, Johnson working some swing into the drums and playing off the start-stop riff smoothly as Haslip deftly changes with the guitar between the verse groove and the chorus’ more forward-driving chorus, a path through it marked by Johnson’s snare and Reed’s “wan”-esque pronunciation of “one,” showing the basis for the name of the track. Reed takes a solo after the first chorus, and the verse reemerges to set up a second chorus, more hurriedly cadenced in the vocals, and another lead that serves as the outro, and when it’s over, I’m left wondering where that five minutes went because it happened so damned fast.
Posted in audiObelisk on July 17th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
When guitarist/vocalist Tony Reed (middle above) emailed me last week to ask me if I’d be interested in streaming and hosting a free download of Mos Generator covering the Nirvana rarity “I Hate Myself and I Want to Die,” it was with his usual bullshit-free manner. To paraphrase, “You wanna do this thing?” And yes, yes I did. The recently-reviewed reissue of the first Mos record still gets plenty of spins out by me, and with the band fresh on the brain as much as anything ever is, I thought it was a great idea. And here we are.
This fall, as you can read below in the PR wire info, Mos Generator will release their first album of new studio material since 2007, and if five years doesn’t seem like a long time — there are bands who take that long just on a whim — put it to the scale of Reed‘s prolific output with StoneAxe and the picture of Mos Generator‘s inactivity becomes much clearer. Together with bassist Scooter Haslip and drummer Shawn Johnson, Reed returns Mos Generator to its priority position in 2012 amid exciting prospects and refreshed creativity.
Originally recorded for a tribute album that was never released, “I Hate Myself and I Want to Die” can be streamed on the player below and downloaded by clicking the link that follows. Please enjoy:
Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!
Thanks as always to Reed for letting me host the stream and download, and to Ripple Music, who will release the new Mos Generator album in the fall and who sent over the following notice:
For five years, fans of Mos Generator have been waiting for an album of new material, and in Fall of 2012, the wait will finally be over! TonyReed has been meticulously turning knobs and fine-tuning the audio aspects of the latest, to-be-named MosGenerator record, making everything sound just right.
But five years has been a long time to wait, and three more months almost feels like a lifetime, so the benevolent souls of MosGenerator are offering up a free download of song that has never been made available before!
“I Hate Myself And I Want To Die” is a Nirvana song that was originally released in 1993 on the Beavis and Butt-Head Experience compilation and the B-side of the “Pennyroyal Tea” single, and it gets the ultimate Mos Generator treatment! This Mos version was originally recorded in 2008 for a Nirvana tribute album that never came out, so now — download, enjoy, and stay tuned for upcoming information on the new Mos Generator album!
Posted in Reviews on June 1st, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
Like seemingly everything else in which he involves himself, my friendship with Tony Reed has been remarkably straightforward. The guitarist, vocalist, songwriter, recording engineer and driving force behind Mos Generator, Stone Axe and HeavyPink (whose 7” is still available on The Maple Forum, hint hint) got an email from me when Stone Axe was putting out their second album requesting a copy for review, he said sure, and I reviewed it. Then we did an interview, I wound up writing the bios for the Ripple Music reissues of the first two Stone Axe records, then HeavyPink came along and I wound up helping to put that out, and there have been live reviews along the way and more posts than I can even think of at this point. In my head, I always go back to Reed calling me at one in the morning to talk about how excited he was to have just recorded Saint Vitus’ first album in 17 years, Lillie: F-65. The dude bleeds passion for rock and roll. It’s pretty much his thing, and in all my many dealings with him, he’s never been anything but upfront, honest and as bullshit-free as his music. Aside from his astounding level of output – two of the four albums reviewed this week – three if you count this deluxe remix of Mos Generator’s self-titled that I promise I’m going to start talking about sooner than later – involved his production (those being Mighty High and Trippy Wicked) – he’s got an incredible knowledge of rock and roll and has turned me on to a few killer bands and records. To put it mildly, he’s someone whose work I respect deeply, and someone I’m very, very glad to have emailed — and not just because a few weeks ago a full glorious 12” vinyl package showed up of Mos Generator’s Mos Generator 2002 debut full-length, given the complete “deluxe edition” treatment by Ripple Music, with whom Reed has cooperated closely over the last couple years, both on his own projects and the label’s.
To say they give the record its due is probably to understate it. That’s not to disrespect the album – it’s a more than solid enough collection, and the last Mos to be issued on vinyl – so it’s well worthy, it’s just the sheer volume of this release is breathtaking. With the Ripple LP, you get the original album, Mos Generator, on vinyl and CD. That’s standard. The CD comes as part of the package. Also included on the CD is the previously unreleased track “Hearts and Hands” and a live show recorded at the Manette Saloon in Bremerton, Washington, on Aug. 24, 2002, which is enough in itself to push the 75-minute mark. That’s probably more than a lot of deluxe reissues would give you, but the vinyl package also comes with a download card – it works, I’ve tested it – that includes an entire collection’s worth of songs. It’s got everything from the vinyl and the CD, plus another complete 2002 live show, this one taped at The Hole in Reed’s native Port Orchard, WA, earlier in the year, as well as four demo tracks, and to cap off, a massive 29-minute freeform rehearsal jam from the original Mos lineup of Reed, bassist Scooter Haslip and drummer Shawn Johnson that, among other things, includes a stopover from the riff to Led Zeppelin’s “Moby Dick” toward the end. All told, it’s nearly two and a half hours of Mos Generator material covering the self-titled era, and a package that fans of the band, of Reed’s work in his other projects, or of heavy rock who might have missed them the first time around will revel in. Mos Generator released their last album – to date; they’re apparently working on a new one – in 2008, and if this reissue is to mark a resurgence, they’re certainly getting off on the right foot. I mean, seriously. The full download has 29 tracks. For some bands, that’s a discography.
The star of the show, though, is the album itself. According to the liner notes penned by Reed, the band was borrowing ideas from their Washington compatriots in Golden Pig Electric Blues Band (whose second album Reed recorded) for some of these songs, but if the seven cuts that make up the record-proper show anything, it’s that the strong sense of structure pervasive in Reed’s work now is nothing new. Immediately with “Lumbo Rock” as the opener, Mos Generator offers rock traditionalism based around memorable choruses that don’t hook for the sake of hooking, but still maintain a firm sense of presence. The band is loose on purpose, but the sound of the reissue is crisp, highlighting the warmth of Haslip’s bass and pop and sway in Johnson’s drumming along with Reed’s swaggering vocal and upbeat riffs. With a tale of moonshining and handclap-worthy snare hits for breaks between its verse lines, “Stone County Line” proves an early highlight, and “Acapulco Gold” aligns Mos Generator to stoner rock with blatant herbal homage not often paid a decade later. Reed croons over a softer guitar line, “Acapulco gold, you’re the only thing I wanna do/You take my soul and I don’t stand a chance of quitting you,” and it’s hard to imagine he didn’t have Sabbath’s “Sweet Leaf” in mind as a blueprint of the song’s red-eyed ethic. The song barely reaches three minutes, but in that time has enough character in its build to leave an impression by the end and make way for the even shorter and still strikingly efficient “F-1,” the newly-done mix of which highlights Haslip’s wah bass as its core and rounds out side A with a crisp execution that continues as the second half of the album takes hold in the form of “Sleeping You Way to the Middle.”
I don’t know if you’ve ever met him or spoken to him, but I can’t even begin to tell you how excellent it is to work with Tony Reed. He’s one of the most bullshit-free individuals I’ve ever had the pleasure to meet, and by way of an example, when I emailed him yesterday to say, “Hey dude, I’ve sold a few copies of the HeavyPink 7″ in the last week and thought it might be a good time to do an update, you got anything new in the works?” it wasn’t even an hour later that he got back to me with info on two new albums he’s a part of and the news that he’s starting in on the next batch of HeavyPink songs already as well.
While I admit I’m hardly impartial, I’m really excited to see where Reed takes the one-man HeavyPink psychedelic project next. Of all his current bands and acts to which he’s contributed of late — Stone Axe, Mos Generator, Blood of the Sun, and so on — I really thought that HeavyPink was something different and unique within his catalog. Something he’d never done before. That was a big part of why I was so happy to help put it out, and with 67 copies left, I hope that if you wound up hearing the 7″, you’ve enjoyed it as well.
Reed informs that he, as ever, is busy. In addition to preparing for Stone Axe‘s set of Free covers at London Desertfest, which runs from April 6-8, and their European tour with Stubb and Trippy Wicked and the new releases detailed last week, he’s gotten started on what will be the first Mos Generator output in four years, a brand new studio album tentatively titled Nomad, for which there will also be a video for the song “Cosmic Ark.” In addition to this, Blood of the Sun‘s new album, Burning on the Wings of Desire, will be released by Listenable Records later this year.
So all good things, and in addition, Reed mixed and mastered the recently-lauded Stubb full-length, and recorded the new Saint Vitus album that’s due out this Spring, so it’s never too long before he’s heard from, one way or another.
Thanks for your support of HeavyPink, The Maple Forum and The Obelisk. To purchase one of the remaining 67 copies of HeavyPink‘s debut 7″, please follow the link above or simply click here.
Posted in Features on February 9th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster
I’d like to review the new Ripple Music deluxe edition of Stone Axe II, the second album from the Tony Reed-led trad rockers, but it’s kind of a grey area, in that I wrote the liner notes for it. Plus, I already reviewed the album when it came out originally in 2010. In an effort to still help promote the album, which is a product I believe to be both enjoyable on a personal level and of a quality that justifies Ripple‘s reverent treatment of it, I’ve decided to post (with permission) the liner notes for you to check out if you’re so inclined.
On a side note, congrats to Tony Reed on the announcement today of his signing on with LACE Music Products. I’m looking forward to Stone Axe‘s set of Free covers at the London Desertfest and many boozy nights self-reminiscing and singing along to the forthcoming Captured Live! Roadburn Festival 2011. In the meantime, here are those Stone Axe II notes:
“It’s what the kids are doing now that school is over The sweat of summer’s love has made the winter sober And the scene this awful mindless short attention Has left the teenage dream forever in detention” –“We Know it’s Still Rock ‘n’ Roll”
If you’ve picked up this reissue of Stone Axe II, chances are you already know the deal. This album was originally released in March 2010 on the band’s own Music Abuse Records, and Ripple Music has picked it up to give it a similar deluxe treatment as that which the first, self-titled Stone Axe got a little while back. This time you get a second disc of compilation material – songs that were only on vinyl previously or included on split or other comps. You know Stone Axe have had a few. Give it another year or two and they’ll be ready for a box set.
They’re prolific, is what I’m trying to say, but there’s no question that Stone Axe II captured something special to tape and something that goes to the very heart of the band’s purpose. Led by multi-instrumentalist and recording engineer T. Dallas Reed – who’s joined by vocalist Dru Brinkerhoff, drummer Mykey Haslip and bassist Mike DuPont – Stone Axe call themselves “Seventies Rock Preservationists,” and in that, they’re not wrong. But it goes beyond just the heavy riffing or references to bands like Free, Thin Lizzy, Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. What Stone Axe are saving isn’t just the music, but the freedom of spirit that led to its creation in the first place.
Reed is at the center of the experience. He ends each of the album’s two programs with a lead vocal, and mans most of II’s instruments, with part-time contributions from Haslip and DuPont, who fit in smoothly to their songs and their roles without a hiccup in the overall flow. But Brinkerhoff’s boozy arrogance is essential to Stone Axe’s classic feel as well. Songs like “Chasing Dragons,” “We Know it’s Still Rock ‘n’ Roll” and “Ain’t Gonna Miss It” are as much Brinkerhoff’s as they are Reed’s, and what he gives them in addition to verbalization is a sense of humanity and personality that’s long since forgotten in modern, digitized, corporate rock.
True to form, before the dust even began to think about settling on Stone Axe II, the band had another release under their belts. The June 2010 split with weedian Brooklyn punkers Mighty High would be Stone Axe’s first collaboration with Ripple Music, and the formation of the relationship that would later find Reed doing engineering work for the label, including helming the 2010 remaster of Poobah’s lost classic, Let Me In, from 1972. The band also found time to hit the road supporting doom metal legends Saint Vitus just as the Mighty High split was being issued, and proceeded to bide their time and prepare for a Spring 2011 European tour that included a slot at the Roadburn Festival in the Netherlands in April.
Mos Generator, Reed’s prior outfit (whose self-titled has coincidentally also been reissued on Ripple), had played Roadburn a few years earlier, but it was Stone Axe’s first time there, and they killed. Their energy and the sincerity in what they do and their love of the form in which they work came through the speakers even louder than DuPont’s bass, which was plenty loud. For those that saw them, they were a highlight of the fest, and then, in the tradition of the true rock and roll journeymen, they were gone, back on tour for a couple more dates with British trio Stubb. And because they never seem to be able to hit the road without, there was some more new vinyl as well: This time a four-way split called Heavy Ripples, on which Stone Axe teamed with UK rockers Grifter as well as Mighty High and Southern-minded New Englanders, Sun Gods in Exile.
At the same time, Ripple’s deluxe version of Stone Axe dropped and – thanks I’m sure in no small part to the eloquence and minimal spelling errors contained in its liner notes (sorry, Dru) – was a huge success and chance for those who caught onto the band later to get their hands on their first offering. Shortly after, Stone Axe filmed a show in Texas for a live DVD and then shot up to Las Vegas for a slot at the second Doom in June Fest alongside the likes of Wino and Solitude Aeturnus, and on July 2, 2011, Stone Axe played the Gorge Amphitheatre in George, Washington, supporting Rush on the side stage.
A couple months without a vinyl would seem like a slowdown, but Reed kept busy nonetheless, recording the first Saint Vitus full-length in 17 years, mixing Stubb’s album, recording with Texas rockers Blood of the Sun and releasing a debut 7” from psychedelic side-project, HeavyPink. All the while, Stone Axe were getting ready to release a split 12” with German stoner heavies Wight, comprised on their side of three freeform jams that are also included on the second disc of this release, and saving up cash to hit up Europe again in 2012 with Stubb and Trippy Wicked and the Cosmic Children of the Knight.
As for what the rest of 2012 and beyond will bring, who knows. There’s that Texas DVD, and rumor has it their Roadburn set was recorded and came out pretty well. Whatever comes next, the safe bet, though, is that Stone Axe will press forward in their quest to remind everyone what life was like before rock music needed “saving.” With the constantly productive nature of the band and the particular chemistry that has developed in the live setting between not just Reed and Brinkerhoff, but Haslip and DuPont as well, Stone Axe could go anywhere from here and still maintain the honesty and the spirit of tribute that drives them.
Until then, please enjoy this deluxe edition of Stone Axe II and the unabashed, unashamed love of rock and roll it represents.
Posted in Label Stuff on December 29th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
As of this post, there are 76 copies of HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink 7″ left. If you don’t have yours yet, you can order it using the Paypal button above or by clicking here to go to the Maple Forum store. It’s come to my attention that some people who’ve bought the record have had trouble with the download card — the link on the little piece of paper doesn’t work. If that’s you, I’d hope that instead of, say, calling me a chump on Facebook, you’d reach out and ask me for a solution to the problem. I’m more than happy to help out anyone who’s had trouble in any way I can, whether it’s sending you the files direct or anything else I can do to rectify the situation.
A full version of “Flower and Song,” the A-side to the single, has made its way to YouTube, and I thought I’d include it here for you to check out if you haven’t yet seen/heard it. Once again, HeavyPink is the one-man psychedelic incarnation of Tony Reed, whose careful hands have in the past sculpted Mos Generator and Stone Axe from out of the rock and roll ether. Reed handles all the instruments, vocals and recording equipment himself, and I’m just glad he let me be involved at all.
Thanks to everyone so far who has ordered a copy of the record. Your support of The Maple Forum and The Obelisk is genuinely appreciated.
Posted in Features on December 16th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
In 2012, it will have been 17 years since Saint Vitus released their last studio album, Die Healing. Following the dissolution, 2003 reformation, dissolution and ongoing 2009 reunion of the band, the new full-length, reportedly titled Lillie: F-65, will be issued on March 27 by Season of Mist. It’s the first album to feature drummer Henry Vasquez, who came aboard in 2009 to fill the role of the late and then-ailing Armando Acosta, and the first album since 1990′s V to feature Scott “Wino” Weinrich on vocals alongside Dave Chandler‘s trademark guitar sound and Mark Adams‘ bass.
Even if Saint Vituswasn’t arguably the best American doom band ever to walk the earth, Lillie: F-65 would be an event just for how long it’s been since the last record. But Vitus, who played Roadburn in 2009 and subsequently embarked on both American and European tours, are among the most influential doom acts of all time. In both their sound and their attitude, they set the template for what would become the miseries still prevalent in the genre today, and having seen them live on multiple occasions since this latest reunion got going, including seeing them perform the new song “Blessed Night” on the Metalliance tour earlier this year with Crowbar, Helmet, Red Fang and Kylesa, I can say with certainty their appeal is more than nostalgic.
The end of June 2010 found Saint Vitus on the road for a week-long West Coast US run alongside Washington classic rockers Stone Axe. The connection there is that T. Dallas Reed (sometimes referred to around here as Tony) plays guitar with Vasquez in his own ’70s-obsessed band, the formidable rock powerhouse Blood of the Sun, but after recording a live Vitus demo in his HeavyHead studio, it was decided that he should be the one to helm the album.
Reed, whose side-project HeavyPink is the latest release on The Maple Forum (I mention it because I’d be remiss not to; it doesn’t come up in the interview once), emailed me late one night a while back and asked if we could talk on the phone the next day. It was about 1AM on the East Coast and I said I was still up if he wanted to call. The sheer excitement in his voice as he recounted being in the studio with Saint Vitus as they tracked their new album was palpable. As much as he was a professional involved in making Lillie: F-65, he’s clearly also a fan.
I didn’t record that conversation — would be weird to just tap my own phone — but we spoke again not too long ago about the process of getting one of 2012′s most anticipated albums to tape (yes, literally tape), and Reed was no less enthusiastic to discuss the project of working with and recording Saint Vitus and watching as Lillie: F-65 began to take its final shape. You’ll find that complete Q&A, along with some info about Reed‘s work with Blood of the Sun, Stone Axe and the regrouped Mos Generator, after the jump.
Also included are some pictures and video of Vitus in the studio, which come courtesy of Reed himself. Please enjoy.
Posted in Label Stuff on November 22nd, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
On the player below is an audio sampler of HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink 7″ that features both tracks included on the physical record itself, “Flower and Song” and “There is a Light.” There are currently 88 copies of the vinyl left, and if you haven’t yet made a purchase, you can do so using the PayPal button above or at The Maple Forum‘s store at BigCartel. Whether or not you buy the platter, I hope you enjoy the audio, which is followed by some refresher info in case you’ve missed the story so far:
Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!
HeavyPink is the new solo project of T. Dallas Reed, the multi-instrumentalist and driving force behind Port Orchard, Washington, rock revivalists Stone Axe and the guitarist and principle songwriter for Mos Generator, among other acts. Ever self-motivated, Reed performed all the instruments on HeavyPink‘s self-titled debut 7″ and recorded the songs himself at his own HeavyHead Studio earlier this year.
The HeavyPink 7″ is the fourth release on The Maple Forum (forum040) and finds Reed branching out from the straightforward nature of his past offerings and into more psychedelic territory — still maintaining his penchant for memorable verses and choruses, but crafting them into warm walls of sound that are deeply layered and richly toned. HeavyPink is unlike anything Reed has done in the past, and yet definitively his own, bearing the mark of his songwriting through both included cuts, “Flower and Song” and “There is a Light.”
All purchases of HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink 7″ come with a sticker and download card, and included in the download is the bonus track “Long Live the Mellotron,” on which Reed pays homage to the titular instrument and uses it to near-symphonic effect. Whispered vocals and other noises ensure that even those who’ve been a longtime follower of the man’s work are in for a genuine surprise.
Purchases can be made using the PayPal button above or at the Maple Forum store. Thanks as always for your support of The Obelisk and The Maple Forum.
Posted in Label Stuff on November 14th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
Special thanks to Ollie Stygall from The Sleeping Shaman (he’s also the guitarist/vocalist of Grifter) for seeing fit to give the HeavyPink 7″ a thoughtful, well-written review. It’s definitely appreciated on this end, and makes for a great read if you haven’t seen it.
There are — true to the headline — 98 copies of HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink remaining in my possession. I’ve got emails out to a couple distro-type outlets, so hopefully it’ll start popping up in other places, and if you’re interested in doing a review, please drop a line and we’ll get that moving as well. Tony Reed also makes for a great phoner, as anyone who’s covered Stone Axe or Mos Generator over the years knows well.
Speaking of, I’ll be getting on the horn with him myself come tomorrow to talk about something very special and not necessarily HeavyPink related. It’s a big story, and I’m hoping to have it up before the end of the week, so stay tuned on that. I don’t want to give too much away, but yeah, it’s gonna be killer.
Posted in Label Stuff on November 3rd, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
Made my night last night after a long day at the office to get back to the valley and find the box HeavyPink records waiting for me on my porch, and today it makes my day to be able to let you know that as of Nov. 3, 2011, the latest project from T. Dallas Reed (Stone Axe, Mos Generator) is officially on sale!
Everyone who pre-ordered: Your packages are on the way. And for everyone else, click the Paypal button above or the cover image to go to the Maple Forum store and pick up your copy of the label’s rookie excursion into vinyl.
I know I’ve talked about it before, but for anyone who might have missed it,HeavyPink is Reed‘s foray into psychedelic walls of sound. The two cuts on the self-titled 7″ take his trademark songwriting ability to new places, sounding full and lush without being jammy or self-indulgent. He couldn’t stop writing catchy songs if he wanted to.
And in HeavyPink, it’s all him. It’s a solo project in the truest sense; Reed writes, plays all the instruments, sings, engineers the recording and sees it through from zero to vinyl. The result is a surprising turn from one of classic heavy rock’s most respected purveyors. This 7″ marks a new beginning for Reed, and I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of it in the small way that I am.
As always with The Maple Forum, the quantities are limited. We pressed 300 records, and I started with 125. Thanks to the pre-orders, there are currently 108 left, and as you can see above, all copies come with a sticker, a download card with an exclusive bonus track, and the high-quality vinyl itself. Thanks in advance for your support of The Obelisk, of The Maple Forum and of HeavyPink. More to come.
Posted in Label Stuff on October 14th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
Thanks to everyone who’s placed a pre-order so far for HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink 7″. I got the test pressing last week from Tony Reed in the mail and it sounds awesome. I think anyone who’s dug his work in Stone Axe or Mos Generator is really going to be into what he’s doing here. I am, anyway.
So, while I wait for the records to get here from the press, I just wanted to let everyone know that bundled with each copy of the 7″ — along with assorted stickers and other goodies Tony said he was going to throw in — there’s going to be a slip of paper with info on how to access a free download of “Flower and Song” and “There is a Light.” Not only that, but included in the zip file is the track “Long Live the Mellotron” — exclusive to the download only.
The whole release is pretty psyched-out, but “Long Live the Mellotron” gets the prize. Tony plays up the mournful side of the instrument and backs it with drums and choral sounds layered in. It’s kind of like Black Sabbath‘s “Supertzar,” but (obviously) with mellotron instead of guitar and some weirdo spoken parts. It’s a cool experiment that Tony, natural songwriter that he is, can’t help but turn into something cohesive.
Anyway, so you supportive souls who’ve already ordered the HeavyPink 7″, keep an eye out for that when your record comes in, and thanks as always. I’ve got 110 copies of HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink left for anyone who wants them. Buy using the Paypal button above or click here to go to the Maple Forum online store.
Posted in Label Stuff on October 4th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
Click the PayPal button above or click here to go to the official Maple Forum store and place your pre-order now for the debut 7″ from HeavyPink — the latest project from T. Dallas Reed of Stone Axe and Mos Generator! Comprised of the two tracks “Flower and Song” and “There is a Light,” HeavyPink‘s first self-titled release finds Reed exploring a more psychedelic side of his songwriting.
Of course, Reed is known for a straightforward style — anyone who’s ever heard Stone Axe can tell you there’s no messing around involved — and on HeavyPink‘s first outing, he keeps the strong verse/chorus sensibility, but expands the tones. His guitars echo, his drums seem more spaced out, and his vocals on the chugging “There is a Light” emanate from some deep chasm of the soul. Fans of Reed‘s work and newcomers alike will I hope be as thrilled as I am at the direction he’s taking with HeavyPink.
And it’s very much him taking the direction. Reed plays all the instruments on HeavyPink‘s HeavyPink, and he recorded and mixed the songs himself at his HeavyHead studio in his native Port Orchard, Washington. It’s a huge sound, and all the better played loud. As always, I hope you enjoy it.
The 7″ marks The Maple Forum‘s first foray into vinyl following three successful CD releases. There are 300 total copies, of which I’m being given 125 to sell (and pre-sell, for those who don’t want to take their chances). Given the sold out prior Maple Forum discs and Reed‘s dedicated fanbase, I don’t expect them to last long. Price is $11 domestic, $13 international, and all 7″s will be carefully packed with bubble wrap in a padded envelope. Since the release is so limited, I don’t want risk any damage during shipping.
If you place your pre-order now, I fill out the shipping label with your info and send you the disc as soon as they come in, which should be another two or three weeks, tops. You’ll know as soon as they get here.
Thank you in advance for your continued support of The Maple Forum project and The Obelisk, and thanks to Reed for allowing me to help him spread the word on this new creative avenue. Here’s to good music.
Posted in Whathaveyou on September 14th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster
Good stuff here. In the true spirit of Tony Reed, he’s got at least three releases in the works at once, and while I still have to get preorder info up for the debut 7″ from HeavyPink that The Maple Forum will be releasing in October (more on that here), the excellent dudes at Ripple Music unveiled plans yesterday to reissue the first album from Mos Generator, Reed‘s band prior to Stone Axe — who also have a split with German outfit Wight coming out.
Whatever incarnation you find him in, be it HeavyPink, Stone Axe or Mos Generator, let there be no doubt Tony Reed is one of the heavy’s most passionate (and prolific) purveyors. Here’s the news from Ripple via the PR wire:
In 2002, PortOrchard, Washington-based Mos Generator sent the stoner/retro rock community on its collective ass with the release of the self-titled debut album, setting in motion the framework for the band’s creative output for the next half decade. Now, in the waning months of 2011, guitarist/vocalist TonyReed, in conjunction with Ripple Music, is compiling an anniversary set that will be sure to appeal to the masses of diehard fans, as well as the throngs of newfound ears.
Mos Generator – 10th Anniversary Edition, scheduled for release on Nov. 21, 2011, will include, for the first time ever, a 12” LP in a gatefold jacket, which will also house a CD with the complete remixed and remastered version of the album, as well as a previously unreleased track from the original recording sessions and the full Live at the Manette recordings that were previously self-released in limited numbers. As if that wasn’t enough bang for the buck, the LP will also feature a download card with all of the previously mentioned material along with demo tracks, additional live recordings, and a near half-hour rehearsal jam!
“We wanted to create a product that captured the history of the band; the nuances of the performances, the creative energies of where we were at as musicians at that particular time in our lives,” states TonyReed as we found him in the midst of rummaging through files of recordings from that era of Mos Generator. “And, along with providing a unique and killer package, we all wanted to keep the price reasonable for the fans.”
In line with the reissue of their first album, Mos Generator are stringing together several dates to play the album in its entirety, as well as to premiere some brand new material that will be included on the band’s first studio album since 2007’s Songs From Future Gods. The new album is currently untitled, but all of the songs are in pre-production with the album tentatively scheduled for an early summer of 2012 release.