Dollar Llama Post Video for “Louder”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 12th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

dollar llama

Portuguese bruiser rockers Dollar Llama issued their third album, Juggernaut, this past December via Raging Planet, and with it unfurl a swath of dudely aggro burl worthy of the title. Taking influence from the likes of Down, Goatsnake and those of harder, meaner edges, the band chug their way through cuts like “Knucklehead,” the ultra-catchy “Misery,” and the bullying but still hook driven “Bocanegra,” keeping structures straightforward but offering some variety of mood around the central crux of testosterone-fueled groove. In some of its nastiest charge, Juggernaut borders on sludge — somehow it’s never quite sloppy enough to actually get there — but it’s never ultimately too far from an underlying current of straightforward metal, as heard in the riffs and gruff vocals alike.

And yet, when one listens to a cut like “Louder” — for which the band have a new video which you can view below — the track isn’t without a sense of space or depth of arrangement, and the same applies to songs like “Nails,” the second half of the penultimate title-track and the verses of the slower “Currents.” This doesn’t quite set up a dichotomy between one side and another throughout the album, but it definitely gives Dollar Llama more of a sense of range than they’d have otherwise, vocalist Tiago Simões harmonizing in layers on “Currents” as guitarists Chikko Marques and Hugo Vieira intertwine riffs and leads atop the solid foundation of rhythm from bassist José Dinis and drummer Pedro Cardoso. No matter what direction a given song is headed in throughout Juggernaut, the band keep it crisp and professional, and offer stage-ready energy with a studio-born fullness of tone. To wit, it seems like no coincidence the record caps with the two-minute balls-outtery of “Stagefires,” which feels as much like a statement of intent as anything else.

All told, Juggernaut is 10 tracks and 44 minutes of dead-ahead push, stuck-in-your-head hooks and rocker-mosh vibing. There’s more than a little chestbeating going on and something of a sense of by-dudes-about-dudes-for-dudes comes through the proceedings, but there’s no arguing with the penchant for songcraft, and Juggernaut becomes even more of a destructive force when ridiculous volume is applied. Trust me, I tested it out.

PR wire info follows the video for “Louder” below. I’ve also included the full album stream of Juggernaut in case you’d like to dig in a bit more.

Either way, please enjoy:

Dollar Llama, “Louder” official video

DOLLAR LLAMA have released their third full length album in December 2nd 2017.

“JUGGERNAUT” can be defined as a “literal or metaphorical force regarded as mercilessly, destructive and unstoppable.” That’s how the band describes the sound of the 10 heavy tracks that makes “Juggernaut” the most powerful album in the history of the band so far.

“LOUDER” is the most psychedelic song, with a voyage of heavy riffs, trippy solos and raging vocals. The album was recorded at Black Sheep Studios, produced by Miguel Marques (Devil In Me, Comeback Kid, More Than a Thousand) and will be distributed by Raging Planet (PT) and Stone Groove Records (USA).

Dollar Llama, Juggernaut (2017)

Dollar Llama on Thee Facebooks

Dollar Llama website

Dollar Llama at Raging Planet Bandcamp

Raging Planet website

Tags: , , , , ,

Miss Lava Ooze the Blues

Posted in Reviews on May 26th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Lisbon, Portugal’s Miss Lava are the kind of stoner rock band that could only survive in Europe. They ooze with a blatant and un-contradictory stoner rock commercialism that’s completely antithetical to the American scene, and like a lot of European bands of their ilk – Spiritual Beggars comes to mind as a primary comparison point – they make it work. They play dirty, sweaty rock and roll, but they do it with clean, crisp production and tight pop songwriting. When US bands try this stuff, it either doesn’t work or turns into douche rock, which isn’t good for anyone involved.

On Miss Lava’s full-length debut, the perhaps referentially-titled Blues for the Dangerous Miles (Raging Planet), the four-piece present 11 tracks mostly in the three and a half to five minute range, centered around solid structures of verses, choruses and so forth. The riffing of guitarist K. Raffah is central to the songs, but I wouldn’t call Blues for the Dangerous Miles guitar-led. Bassist Samuel Rebelo, drummer J. Garcia and vocalist Johnny Lee know where they’re supposed to be at any given time, so it’s not like the guitars need to start the song and everyone picks up from there. Miss Lava are tighter than that. They’ve worked out those kinks.

Most of the recording was done by Rebelo, or at least involved him in some way (apart from the vocals), and Miss Lava sent the record to metal titan Jens Bogren (Opeth, Amon Amarth, Katatonia, etc.) at Fascination Street Studios for mixing and mastering. You can hear some of that modern metal sheen in Raffah’s guitar on cuts like “Blind Dog” or the opener “Don’t Tell a Soul,” but in the context of the band’s approach, it works. Ditto for Lee’s vocals, which make tracks like “Shine On” and the slower “The Wait” highlights of Blues for the Dangerous Miles, but would probably be grating in another band situation. In Miss Lava, they seem to swagger just right; their multiple-layer arrangements only adding to the pop sensibilities of the band.

Read more »

Tags: , , ,