Buried Treasure: The Midwestern Haul 2013

Posted in Buried Treasure on July 5th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

By the time I was on Route 80 headed back east, I had assembled one of my finest record-shopping hauls to date. I said at the time it was no coincidence I was making a stopover in Toledo on my way out to Days of the Doomed III. Hitting Ramalama Records I regarded as an imperative. Flat, Black and Circular in Lansing, Michigan, was another, and adding Kalamazoo’s Green Light Records to the return voyage after the fest was like a bonus round of flipping through stacks that made the long ride to follow that much closer to tolerable.

All told, it was four separate hauls that made it back in the one full stack above. I haven’t had the chance yet to listen to everything — it last year’s acquisitions are anything to go by, it’s going to take a while — but I’ve had the full pile on my desk for the better part of two weeks now and it’s been a blast to make my way through, one album to the next to the next and so on.

Since I had so much fun buying this stuff, I thought I’d take an opportunity to nerd out and give a rundown of what I ended up with, where and how. Some of this has been reviewed, some not so much, but from Acid Witch to Whaler, it all seemed relevant one way or another. Screw it, I just like talking about buying albums.

As always, click any picture to enlarge. Let’s do this thing:

Ramalama Records — Toledo, OH

My basic plan for Ramalama was to pick up new albums and recent releases. More new stuff than used. Their used section is actually pretty good, for rock and metal both, but I had some CDs I wanted to buy of stuff that had been given to me digitally for review — have I mentioned yet today how much I think that’s horseshit? — and I knew doing it while supporting a place like Ramalama would take some of the sting out. Grabbing the Uncle Acid (review here) and Church of Misery (review here) was kind of a given, and along with the new Kylesa – I’ve been wanting to give a revisit since it was reviewed — and AnciientsHeart of Oak, which I meant to review so hard but was never able to make it happen, I picked up both of the Spitting Fire live albums by High on Fire — which could’ve been one CD so easily it’s almost funny and makes me wonder if there’s some contractual reasoning behind splitting them up — Circle by Amorphis (for whom I’m forever a nerd), and Voivod‘s Target Earth, which seems to be proving a point in how forward the guitars are though I’m not sure what that point might be. Out of the used section, I also managed to find two bootlegs: Demos 84 & 85 from Celtic Frost, which I’m pretty sure is just a crappy rip of Morbid Tales with some early live tracks added, and Clutch, Live 2002 Tour, which seemed like it was all one show until “A Shogun Named Marcus” came on, was twice as loud, and at least six years before 2002. Still cool to get live versions of “Cattle Car” and “Walpole Man” (here  listed as “Warpole”), which were reworked into different songs by the time Blast Tyrant came out, as well as a live version of the Jethro Tull cover “Cross Eyed Mary.” No complaints.

Flat, Black and Circular — Lansing, MI

The Heads’ 1995 debut, Relaxing With… might have been the find of the whole trip. It was released in a limited run 18 years ago (since reissued), but most importantly, the record itself fucking smokes. Killer heavy psych/space rock that even sounds ahead of its time for how it sounds dated. You can’t really see it in the pic above, but at the bottom of the mini-stack is a tin-box version of Dragging Down the Enforcer by Eyehategod offshoot Outlaw Order. I never bought it when it came out and figured if I was ever going to get a copy, this would be the one to get. The Stone Age Complications EP by Queens of the Stone Age and Also Rising by SubArachnoid Space felt like good finds, and I grabbed another Amorphis just in case I wanted to listen on the way home, Iron Monkey and Slough Feg just because I didn’t have them yet and for a heavy ’70s fix, the self-titled Granicus and the second Warhorse album, Red Sea. Hoping for a funk fix, I snagged Fire by Ohio Players, and it’s decent but skirts a line with disco that takes away some of the weight in the rhythm section. Needless to say, I have a copy of Roots by Curtis Mayfield currently on order and am anxiously attending its arrival. Flat, Black and Circular has yet to disappoint in the three or four times I’ve been fortunate enough to peruse its wares, and it was another one I was looking forward to hitting up. There’s always some treasure waiting.

Days of the Doomed III — Cudahy, WI

It might not look like so much, but the thing about it was that a lot of the bands playing the Days of the Doomed fest, I already had their stuff. I had hoped Beelzefuzz would have copies on hand of their forthcoming debut long-player, but no such luck. Still, I managed to do pretty well with what was available. Getting a copy of 2013’s Somnium Excessum directly from Dream Death was an experience that only underscored how lucky I felt to see the band live — they’d only had the vinyl at Roadburn when I asked bassist Rich Freund — and the reissue of The Gates of Slumber‘s 2004 debut, The Awakening, fell easily under the must-buy category. I also happened into a Thirst for Misery demo from Michigan classic metal/heavy rockers The Swill that stood out even before I put it on for its cover photo of a hoodie-wearing stormtrooper hoisting a can of PBR, and was glad to be given a copy of Sleestak‘s new Book of Hours EP, which I’ll be reviewing at some point in the coming weeks. Put those together with the gorgeous layout of Whaler‘s Deep Six and The Gates of Slumber‘s Scion-sponsored Stormcrow EP (which was free), and it was two days’ worth in quantity and quality. That Whaler record is a killer.

Green Light Music and Video — Kalamazoo, MI


The trip out of Wisconsin began sometime around 8:30AM. It was Sunday, and I had 700-plus miles to drive, but how many times a year do I get to pass through Kalamazoo? Right, once. So a stop seemed warranted, and when I walked into Green Light Music and Video and they were playing Queens of the Stone Age‘s Rated R, I knew I was in the right place. They had some choice vinyl and a few snazzy looking turntables, the kind of promo posters I didn’t know record labels still made, and a slew of old stickers — Roadsaw, Core, etc. — that let me know their affiliation to heavy rock was nothing new. An Acid Witch reissue, some Uriah Heep and Nick Cave were decent enough to happen upon — the Uriah Heep especially — and since it was on Man’s Ruin, I got Laced Candy by The Gaza Strippers, though it turned out to be a double. My favorite of the bunch, however, was Live at Colonia Dignidad by Finland’s Opium Warlords. I bought it because the description on the back cover promised a host of contradictions, including, “A celebration of psychosexual isolation” and “Quality time for a suicidal inner-space astrodoomonaut.” Turns out Opium Warlords is a solo-project for Sami “Albert Witchfinder” Hynninen (ex-Reverend Bizarre), and in what I can only assume is deliberate contrast to the whites and pinks of the album art, the music itself is experimental drone-doom, at times vicious and near-unlistenable, at other times minimal and atmospheric. It didn’t make for great driving music, but I dug it anyway, and Green Light made a fitting epilogue to a weekend of CD-buying excess I don’t anticipate being able to match for some time.

Ye olde Googlymaps lists the drive from Wisconsin to my humble river valley at a little over 15 hours with the stop-off in Michigan. I won’t say these records were much comfort to me when I lost over an hour sitting at a dead stop for bridge construction before getting 100 miles eastbound into Pennsylvania, but if anything was going to aid so helpless a situation, they probably would’ve done it.

Thanks for reading and indulging the indulgence.

Ramalama Records

Flat, Black and Circular

Green Light Music & Video

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Buried Treasure and the Joys of the Garden State Parkway

Posted in Buried Treasure on April 10th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Not that it’s not something I do on the regular anyway, but there’s something even more satisfying about going record shopping when The Patient Mrs. isn’t around. I guess it’s the illusion that I’m getting away with something, though basically, it’s that: an illusion. But a couple weekends ago, as I was headed down to Philly to catch Been Obscene share a Kung Fu Necktie bill with Borracho, SuperVoid and Clamfight (review here), she was gone for a few days and I took it upon myself to make a stop off at Vintage Vinyl in Fords to pick up a few odds and ends.

If ever there was a justification for the Garden State Parkway — which is among the most overpopulated, miserable, thin-laned highways I’ve ever driven on (and I’ve driven on California’s 101,  the Masspike into Boston and I-95 all up and down the Eastern Seaboard) — it’s Vintage Vinyl. Exit 130 if you’re going southbound, as I was, it’s a destination-type shop; one worth traveling to even if you’re not necessarily driving somewhere else. Jersey has a scant few remaining, but Vintage Vinyl is the one most geared toward the heavier end of the spectrum. The metal CD section is the first thing you see after getting in the door. Awesome.

Most of what I grabbed this time through was stuff I’d reviewed by wanted a physical copy of. I’ve ranted enough about how much it annoys me to make these purchases — I suppose if someone had to be the last one to place any value whatsoever on my time, it was bound to be me — so I’ll spare that, but I was still glad to nab recent outings from Samothrace, Troubled Horse, Darkthrone, Orange Goblin and SardoniS. I’d wanted to get Royal Thunder‘s CVI and finally give it the listen I’ve felt it really deserved since I saw the band in Manhattan in February — even though their guitarist spit beer on the crowd — but decided to roll with the preceding 2010 self-titled instead.

That’s an old impulse. I remember being upwards of 10 years old, hearing a band’s song on the radio, and then buying the album before to hear where they came from. I don’t know if I’m the only one who does it, but it’s something I’ve always done. It’s a two-sided deal, because I do get to listen to the origins of a band, or at least the relative origins, but don’t get the material I want to hear. Why, when I was obviously buying a stack of discs, was I limiting myself to just one Royal Thunder CD when I could’ve easily solved the problem by getting both? I don’t know. Old habits die hard.

Fortunately, the self-titled is pretty awesome in its own right, though I think the pick of the haul might have to be Beast in the Field‘s 2009 sophomore outing, Lechuguilla. The Michigan instrumentalists hadn’t quite yet adopted the Satan-loving aesthetic of their two subsequent albums to date, 2010’s World Ending and 2011’s Lucifer, Bearer of Light, but the work itself is no less malevolent. Broken into six tracks, the 37-minute long-player is essentially one extended piece, building a huge tension throughout the first several tracks before finally landing at full impact with “Lake OF Blue Giants” and carrying a vicious lumber through the remaining two extended cuts, “Castrovalva” and “The Emperor’s Throne Room.” I got turned on to these guys last summer when I was out their way en route to Days of the Doomed II, and I have yet to regret getting ahold of one of their albums. I’ve got them all now, so they’re four for four in my book, and hopefully Lucifer, Bearer of Light has a follow-up soon.

I’d heard Mirror of Deception‘s previous outing, 2006’s Shards, and so was glad to pick up 2010’s The Smouldering Fire on the cheap with the bonus disc, and something I’ve been meaning to get as long as I’ve been meaning to get to Vintage Vinyl was My Sleeping Karma‘s last album, Soma. The purchase was bittersweet (it’s the first of their albums I’ve not been given a physical promo to review), but I was comforted by the opportunity to hear the two bonus tracks in the digipak version. First is “Interlude by Sheyk rAleph,” performed by the long-tenured German sitarist/psychedelic soundscaper Ralph Nebl, who uses Sheyk rAleph as a stage name, and second is “Glow 11,” a remix credited to Holzner & Kaleun that brings electronic beats into the melting pot of My Sleeping Karma‘s heavy psych meditations. What’s really interesting about it is neither would’ve been out of place had they been included as part of the album proper, which I guess shows just how expansive the band’s palette has become.

Of course, the subsequent gig at Kung Fu Necktie was the highlight of the night, but a bit of record shopping beforehand certainly took the bite out of the trip, there and back afterwards. And The Patient Mrs. was kind enough to not even mention it later, letting me keep my delusions of sneakiness, so really it was an all-around win however you might want to look at it.

My Sleeping Karma, “Interlude by Sheyk rAleph”

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Buried Treasure and the Walking Ghosts

Posted in Buried Treasure on February 7th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Time was limited. It was Monday morning and I was supposed to go to work after all, but as I was in New England anyway, a quick run to Armageddon Shop in Providence didn’t seem all that unreasonable. I’ve never come out of there feeling less than satisfied, and even back in December at the Boston store, I was able to pick up a few winners. Plus, Armageddon‘s been on my mind lately with their handling the repress of Elder‘s Spires Burn EP and the release of Magic Circle‘s self-titled, for which I have a review pending. All that, coupled with my general desire to crane my neck before a CD rack, made the stop a necessity. Turned out work was still there when I finally showed up anyway. Go figure.

On the wall of my office is a post-it with albums I’ve been meaning to pick up — mostly review stuff that labels won’t send out physical copies of anymore that I’ll grudgingly buy and devalue the effort I put into writing about them while also diminishing my appreciation for the record out of the pervasive annoyance. It’s a vicious cycle. Anyway, most of what’s on it I couldn’t remember, but it was fine. I managed to find enough and then some, as you can see in the stack above. The new Bedemon (track stream here) and Seremonia (track stream here) records were a must, and I hadn’t actually gotten a CD of the last Enslaved (review here), so I figured if I was going to give someone the cash for it, at least I could feel good about it going to Armageddon. The rest was gravy.

The first Hooded Menace full-length, Fulfill the Curse, Orodruin‘s Claw Tower and Other Tales of Terror and the repress of Life Beyond‘s Ancient Worlds were cool finds, but I was even more stoked on the 2003 Cream Abdul Babar/Kylesa split on At a Loss. I think they came by their progression honestly and I think Spiral Shadow (review here) bears that out, but it’s easy to forget how blisteringly heavy that band was at one point, all noise and fury and potential. With the unbridled weirdness of Cream Abdul Babar to complement, that split was a killer. The punkish War and Wine by the UK’s The Dukes of Nothing was something I had my eye on for a while, with Orange Goblin‘s Chris Turner on drums, bassist Doug Dalziel (ex-Iron Monkey) and Stuart O’Hara (ex-Acrimony, current Sigiriya) as one of two guitars, and more on the hardcore end, the self-titled collection from Hard to Swallow was a pleasant surprise, spanning the short tenure of the outfit that featured Jim Rushby (Iron Monkey) on guitar and Justin Greaves (Iron Monkey and even later of Crippled Black Phoenix) on drums and a host of others from that sphere ripping out primitive, violent bursts in rapid succession.

With 13 tracks in 27 minutes, there’s little room for screwing around, so Hard to Swallow get right to it, blending raw riffage with extreme punk fuckall. The compilation was released on Armageddon‘s own label, and though it’s more hardcore than what I’ll generally grab, it’s a solid, intense listen. A secret track incorporating Sabbath‘s “Under the Sun” into a grind medley made a decent, meaner answer to The Dukes of Nothing‘s album on Tortuga, and the metallic outing from Enslaved and Seremonia‘s distinctly Finnish weirdness. More local to home, I grabbed Halfway to Gone‘s split with Alabama Thunderpussy, which I already own but figured for six bucks I’d take a double, and the 1997 debut from underrated Jersey-based psychedelic rockers, Lord Sterling.

Your Ghost Will Walk was one of those albums I figured I’d probably never happen upon, perhaps even less so in Rhode Island. I haven’t been chasing it down for years and years or anything like that — a preliminary search can find copies out there — but neither was I going to pass up the chance to get a new one. The pressing is on Chainsaw Safety Records, may or may not be original, and for anyone who heard Lord Sterling‘s Weapon of Truth (2002, Rubric) or Today’s Song for Tomorrow (2004, Small Stone), the first one is a little more jagged, a little more post-hardcore, somewhat less psychedelic, though the ethereal garage via The Doors vibes of the later albums are definitely present in some nascent form. I always dug those guys, so it was cool to hear where they came from a little bit.

Because I can’t resist a CD on Man’s Ruin and because I’m forever a sucker for NYC noise, I impulse grabbed The Cuttroats 9‘s self-titled. The band had Chris Spencer and Dave Curran from Unsane in it, so I figured I couldn’t go wrong and I was right. It was a last-minute thing as I was looking through, but I’ve done way worse. All told, the haul was well-rounded and with a cup of coffee from the bakery down the street, I felt like the win was even more complete. About five hours later, I strolled into my office like I owned the place.

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Buried Treasure: Tales of Armageddon in Boston

Posted in Buried Treasure on December 7th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

Similar to my thinking in going to the Six Organs of Admittance show last Friday, it seemed to me that if I’m going to be living up that way in the next year, I better get used to buying records in Boston. I’d been to Armageddon Shop there before, and I’ve visited the Providence store as well, but a return trip seemed warranted and The Patient Mrs. gave the all-clear, so off to Harvard Square we went.

Like a lot of places, Armageddon seems to be phasing out CDs in favor of donating the room to vinyl, which at this point I can’t even argue with. New records are coming out only on LP and CDs have lost preference to either end of the extreme — i.e. vinyl or digital, or both. Even as someone who would still rather have a CD than a record, I can understand the appeal. So it makes sense. It’s good business. And in the meantime, they still have a whole wall and then some dedicated to mostly used compact discs and I was happy to peruse the space once again while the crew put on the flute-laden tones of the last Blood Ceremony full-length.

I wound up with two discs for my effort, not really on the cheap but not exactly off it either. For $9.99, I got Black Spirit‘s Black Spirit and for $6.99, Endless Skies by Ashbury. The former is an Italian band and an album I posted about earlier this year, full of post-kraut progressive indulgences but not really off-putting or lacking unifying melody. The latter — and I’ll say this honestly — I bought because the art was badass. I looked at the wizard holding up his hand to gather the clouds about the village below, saw that it was a Vintage/Rockadrome reissue and decided there was no way to lose. A safe bet I was comfortable making.

Of the two, Black Spirit‘s album is the older. It came out in 1978, was their only release, and even this Ohrwaschl version is light on info. You get the lineup and the tracklist (inside the liner in what looks like a direct replica of the vinyl sleeve) and that’s pretty much it. The cover art — also righteous, but in a different way than Ashbury – appears twice, on the jewel case and the outside panels of the liner notes, and even under the CD tray as well, not to mention on the CD itself. It’s a lot of purple to live up to, but the music on the album’s five tracks gets driven home with a bluesy feel and some lightly accented vocals, and 12-minute closer “Old Times” is high-grade classic heavy rock that maybe could’ve come out five or six years earlier and been a hit, but I guess was a little behind the times for ’78.

Same applies to Ashbury, come to think of it, except with the Arizona duo they’re playing a kind of proto-metal that, by the time Endless Skies was released in 1983, the genre had moved past. “Vengeance” has a kind of metal-ness to its riff, but a song like “Take Your Love Away” is more Blue Öyster Cult than Judas Priest. Nothing against it, since the guitar playing is ace, the tracks groove and the whole thing has a vibe worthy of its wizard cover, and considering the side-of-the-van-worthiness of that wizard, that’s saying something. To imagine though that the mid-’70s arena melodies of “Madman” came out the same year as the first Slayer record makes it even more fascinating. In any case, I lucked out.

It wasn’t the biggest haul I’ve ever pulled in, not the stack of discs I sometimes come away with, but for the quality of what I got, I’d hardly call it a loss. Two albums that happen to share in being out of place for what they were doing at the time, the math actually works out pretty well. There was never any doubt, but I’m more or less certain that whenever I end up living there, it won’t be the end of my record buying habit. Good to know. If you’re so inclined, check out Armageddon Shop’s website here.

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Buried Treasure in a Garden of Sound

Posted in Buried Treasure on November 26th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

Driving past the homogenized “warmth” of the brick retail chains that have appeared since I was last down on the outskirts of Baltimore’s Fell’s Point neighborhood, I couldn’t help but think of John Brenner from Revelation discussing the inner harbor in that interview that went up last week. These places with all the trappings of economic stimulus except any investment back into the community that hosts them the way feet host blisters. There for a painful while and then gone. Pop.

It was different once I actually got into Fell’s Point. Not that the neighborhood wasn’t gentrified from its working class harbor roots, but that at very least it was actual gentrification, independently owned businesses or at least smaller, regional chains and a most welcome onslaught of pubs, eateries, and other gastro-type decadences. Kooper’s Tavern, where The Patient Mrs. and I had lunch, had tables set up outside selling oysters and recycling the shells for use by — wait for it — other oysters. Seems nobody is immune to the economic ravages of our age. Even the oysters have to buy used.

Fitting that act of conservation would be prelude to a radical haul whose like — in what otherwise might be considered a regular ol’ record shop — I’ve not seen in some time. Sound Garden (no relation) was just down the street from the pub where we ate and several others, and it wasn’t my first time there by any stretch (seems impossible that it would’ve been over three years ago, but I guess that’s why old posts are dated), but I didn’t remember it being quite the trove it was this time around. Walking up the middle of the three aisles, I went past the metal and the midsection divide — I’d come back to the metal, no worries — something strange compelling me forward, and that’s when I saw it:

The Psychedelic section.

Oh yeah, that’s right. The monkey that lives in my head where my brain should be clicked on the dim bulb of his cavernous abode and for a moment I said a prayer to my pagan octopus god that I might win the $300 million Powerball and come back to Sound Garden to purchase every album in the Psychedelic section on principle alone. A mere celebration of the existence of such a thing. Portrait of the mouth, drooling.

What fun I had. Flipping through was like opening presents. I limited myself to two discs about which I knew absolutely nothing but what was written on the eloquent description labels — Truth‘s Truth from 1969 and EscombrosEscombros, from 1970. The former is a poppy, folksy thing, not bad but not quite as bizarre as I was hoping based on the cover, and Escombros is a heavier Chilean obscurity that opens with a cover of Hendrix‘s “Stone Free,” so I guessed I was pretty safe in grabbing it. Turns out I was right about that. The vocals sounded mixed too high on my office speakers when I listened, but I expect on a different system, it might not be an issue at all, and there were a couple gems there anyway. Wicked Lady‘s Psychotic Overkill was a welcome find as well, all buzzsaw-this and early-’70s narcodelia that.

I also picked up Goat‘s World Music based on the tarantula-sized hype surrounding. That hype is probably earned, and however problematic I might find European acts copping a feel on some Fela Kuti afrobeat fuzz, they’re hardly the first and they did it well enough. I wasn’t quite enchanted, but sometimes with albums like that I go into it determined not to like them and usually find I don’t. That wasn’t the case with Goat.

In the “I reviewed this and I’m annoyed at buying it” category, the newest ones from Golden Void (review here), Astra (review here) and Six Organs of Admittance (review here) were fodder enough for a grumble, even if Astra and was used. Six Organs was $15 new and the sleeve isn’t even a gatefold. Call me a privileged shit if you want — boo hoo you don’t get free stuff, etc. — but for the time and effort I put into even a shorter review, I don’t think a CD is too much to ask, especially when I know that I’m one of like three remaining motherfuckers who cares in the slightest. Apparently the music industry disagrees. Grumble grumble, man.

One might include the new Neurosis (review here) in that category as well — and the Grand Magus I didn’t even step to this time around — but the fact is on that one I was just being impatient and that a physical promo of Honor Found in Decay would show up sooner or later (it did, today). However, my wanting to hear it right that minute met with such logic on the field of diplomacy and the compromise reached was that I’d buy the digipak edition, because it’s limited and the promo would likely be the jewel case anyway. I never got the digi version of 2007’s Given to the Rising and there’s a little bit of me that still regrets it. That same part is very much enjoying listening to “My Heart for Deliverance” as he types this.

There were odds and ends as well. With Kalas on my brain after The Johnny Arzgarth Haul resulted in another promo, Used Metal paid dividends in the first full-artwork copy I’ve ever owned — and in case you were wondering why I care so much about physical media, that’s how long I remember shit like that — and over in Used Rock, the first Grinderman happened to be situated next to a special edition of 2009’s Grinderman 2, the unmitigated sleaze of which I friggin’ loved at the time, as well as Grails‘ cinematic 2012 outing, Deep Politics (review here).

I wound up with a used copy of Dungen‘s 2002 third album, Stadsvandringar, getting the band confused with Black Mountain, I think because they both used to have the same PR. Thanks a lot, Girlie Action Media circa 2005. I felt a little pathetic when I discovered my error, but I checked out the Dungen and it wasn’t bad, covering some of the same sunny psych folk territory that Barr did on their 2012 sophomore installment, Atlantic Ocean Blues (track stream here), and giving me a new context for not onlyBarr, but a slew of other acts as well. Could’ve been much worse.

Cap it off with a used copy of Lewis Black‘s The Carnegie Hall Performance from 2006 — a stellar two-disc show recorded in the depths of American hopelessness post-Katrina but for the bit about air traffic control — and when I brought it all to the counter, the dude asked me, “Are you local?” I said I wasn’t and he said, “Well, I’m going to give you a discount anyway.” It was much appreciated, regardless of the geography involved, and by the time I left Sound Garden, I was more pleased with the outcome I carried in a red plastic bag than I’ve been coming from a single record store in a long time. Probably since I visited Flat, Black and Circular in Lansing, Michigan, over the summer, and that’s saying something.

My hope is that it’s not another three years before I get back there — appropriately enough, Lewis Black has a whole section early into his show about time moving faster as you age, and he’s absolutely right — but whenever it is, Sound Garden is definitely on the must-hit list for next time I’m in Baltimore. If you want to look them up, their website is here.

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Sometimes You Just Gotta Go to the Record Show

Posted in Buried Treasure on October 15th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

It had been a while since I’d been to the Second Saturday Record Show in flood-prone Wayne, NJ. In fact, relatively speaking, my load of CD acquisitions has been light of late, a combination of pricing myself out of the market, saving cash to move, being annoyed at digital promos, etc. But Saturday was the record show and I happened to be in the state, so I wasn’t going to miss it.

The Wayne Firehouse, which is where the show has been held since before time began, was as packed as I’ve ever seen it, and with more vinyl. Believe the hype, I guess. People were pushing through the aisles at crowded tables, and even though I was working under my self-imposed limit to CDs and tapes, I wavered when I happened upon an original LP of the first Goatsnake record. I didn’t buy it, because it was $75, but I came close.

Treasures persisted though. Here’s a quick rundown.

Among the CDs, the self-titled Electric Wizard was the highlight, no doubt about. Original jewel case issue on Rise Above. I’d only had the reissue before that paired it with Come My Fanatics and the digipak that came out even later, so to get the first version was a treat. Of course the album rules, but I already knew that going into it.

Tapes were three for two bucks at one seller’s table, so I grabbed the Dio, Sacred Heart, and Black Sabbath, Mob Rules and Born Again tapes from him, as well as the three-tape set of Carl Reiner and Mel BrooksThe 2,000 Year Old Man, which is a classic. The Ozzy tape came from his as well, which threw off the three-for-two thing, but it was worth the extra 50 cents anyway. I think actually I only wound up paying $2.50 anyhow. Fucking awesome.

The Hendrix tape in the top right corner I bought off a different dude for a buck. It’s a dub of “Top Gear”/BBC stuff (click here to pop up the full tracklist), and yeah, it’s probably all been officially released at this point, but it fucking rules anyway, front to back. 1967. Gorgeous.

The 1996 debut by Canada’s Sheavy was in the same bin as the Electric Wizard (and some Death SS, which I picked up as well), but might have been an even bigger surprise, if only because it was so random. I’ve never been really hooked by the band — though they do take Sabbath worship to a different level entirely and there’s something inherently admirable in that — but the record’s cool and it’s got a handmade-looking foldout included detailing the bonus tracks and even a little pyramid-shaped piece of paper that seems to be a kind of mail-order catalog:

And here’s the foldout, when folded out:

Pretty cool that that stuff would be with the album after all these years, and in impeccable shape at that. The CD was obviously well loved, kept out of sunlight, and so on. Hard not to appreciate stumbling on something like that, no matter how attached to Sheavy‘s work I may or may not be.

One of my main reasons for going in the first place, however, was the hope of picking up a turntable on the cheap. I’ve invested about as much time and effort into trying to repair the one at my office as I care to, and it’s time to move on. They didn’t have any at the record show, which was a bummer, but en route to other errands, The Patient Mrs. found a $40 Best Buy gift card that’s apparently been in my wallet since 2009. Could only be providence, right?

We shot over to the local big-box — a desert of outdated technologies (which actually gave it a certain charm in my eyes) — and grabbed the floor model of one of those “put your LPs on your iPod” turntables for what turned out to be $24 after the gift card was applied. Brought it to the office this morning, and of course it didn’t work. Now I’m 0-2 and I’ve got two busted record players one on top of the other on top of my office shelf unit, which I think makes me some kind of warped reality redneck.

Some you win, some you lose. I’ll try to return it and see if I can give it another go, and I’ve got plenty to keep me busy in the meantime. If nothing else, the growling and howling in “Hound Dog” on that Hendrix tape has the little dog Dio eyeballing the speaker curiously, and that’s bound to be hours of entertainment. Rock and roll.

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Buried Treasure: Neil Fallon and How You too Can be an Instant Winner

Posted in Buried Treasure on August 1st, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

I was avoiding work recently, as I have a tendency to do when there’s a lot of it. Dicking around on eBay in my usual scouring the intertubes for Clutch promos, I did a search specifically for frontman Neil Fallon‘s name, to see perhaps if his advice book on beard maintenance (that’s not a real thing) had come out yet, or if there might be some oddity I’d missed along the way.

One look through the CD category later, I stumbled on a CDR for sale in a slimline jewel case of the Fallon solo single “Instant Winner.” The song originally appeared on the 2003 Chrome Peeler Records compilation You’ve Got Your Orders Volume One, but this was marked as being the unmastered final mix of the track. And it was the label itself selling it. Having been involved in the past in the compilation procedure, I knew that generally tracks are turned in in final mix form, then the whole thing is mastered together.

So it didn’t seem unreasonable for me to presume that this could be the disc that Fallon turned in as his contribution to the comp, the project of which was that Chrome Peeler dealt out song titles to a variety of artists — House of Low Culture, Erik Larson, Hella and Thurston Moore all appear on Volume One, among many others — and told them to work from that. Hence the giving of orders. Fallon turned “Instant Winner” into a smooth-sounding acoustic psych pop, reminiscent more of Mollusk-era Ween than his own work in Clutch, with a higher-register vocal to go with.

Of course, Fallon is still immediately identifiable by the rhythm of his delivery, and whether or not this is the actual CDR he sent Chrome Peeler to be included on You’ve Got Your Orders, it’s still a pretty cool listen and I’ve got no regrets for picking it up. If you haven’t heard it before, here’s an HD version of the finished product:

And Chrome Peeler has made the entirety of You’ve Got Your Orders Volume One available via their Bandcamp site, if you want to hear more.

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Buried Treasure: Three States, Three Hauls

Posted in Buried Treasure on June 22nd, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

Click the image above to bask in the full scale awesomeness that was my Midwestern CD haul. Sure, I wrote a little bit about the driving I did last weekend, and a lot about the Days of the Doomed II (seriously, even I was a little surprised at the length Day One and Day Two reviews), but one thing I didn’t mention was the record shopping I did on the way.

I’ll confess that was on purpose. The three stacks above I felt deserved some special attention. Left to right, there are the hauls from Ramalama Records in Toledo, Ohio, Flat, Black and Circular in Lansing, Michigan, and the fest itself, which took place in Cudahy, Wisconsin. Three states, three stacks — a mini-tour of irresponsible spending that served to remind me of why I went back to work full-time in the first place.

Here’s how it went down:

This was my second visit to Ramalama Records in Toledo, and like the first, I found it to be a haven of heavy wares. Last time when I got there, they were playing YOB, and this tie it was High on Fire‘s Surrounded by Thieves, which once again led me to strike up a conversation with the dude working the counter. They’d reorganized some since the last time I was there, but it seems mostly to have been a move to make room for more vinyl, which now takes up the whole left wall when you walk in. Good stuff. They didn’t have a lot used that I was really looking for — lots of metal, some I had, some I wasn’t interested in — but I took the opportunity on my way to Lansing to stock up on a few recent releases I hadn’t yet gotten physical copies of; the special edition of Candlemass being a highlight as well as new albums from Paradise Lost and Pelican and Solitude Aeturnus‘ recent reissue of their early works. The Diagonal and Spaceboy records were used, and I got some Funkadelic in there because that shit is awesome. Not bad for a way to stretch my legs between I-75 and I-280.

I wanted to make sure I stopped in at Flat, Black and Circular (or just FBC to the natives) before I left Lansing to go to the fest in Wisconsin, so last Friday morning, under the careful navigational guidance of Postman Dan — the unofficial mayor of Lansing, Michigan — I hit it up and found that although it’s got a name that hints at vinyl, it’s also a treasure trove of small, rectangular and plastic. Aside from a silver-backed disc Alice in Chains bootleg, I got the Diwphalanx issue of Church of Misery‘s The Second Coming (a double), as well as the newest Master Musicians of Bukkake, the first Six Organs of Admittance, some live Amebix, Yeti by Amon Düül II, the first Saturnalia Temple — which was a surprise — another Funkadelic album, some Unsane on Man’s Ruin, Monster Magnet‘s Tab 25 on Glitterhouse, which is a perfect complement to Hawkwind‘s In Search of Space, a Greenslade disc at random because I liked the cover (album is proggier than expected, but not bad) and the Satan-loving latest album by Lansing locals Beast in the Field, Lucifer, Bearer of Light. Top it off with Unorthodox and you have one of the finest CD hauls I’ve had in a long time. Lot of great shit to happen into and a lot of records there I’m happy to have adopted.

Once I’d effectively space trucked my way through Chicago’s legendary “make you want to stop and eat dinner here” traffic and actually arrived in Wisconsin, I found Days of the Doomed to be a trove of merch that I didn’t yet own that I should own. From Beelzefuzz — the unfortunates who arrived late having blown their tire and then later gave their stuff away for free (I mistakenly said I bought one; nope) to Sanctus Bellum, who were kind enough to give me a copy of the album to review, to Orodruin, whose Epicurian Mass I already owned (it was Claw Tower I needed) to Earthen Grave, whose CD showed up in the mail when I got back to New Jersey, it was hit or miss as regards the outcome of the purchases, but I can’t argue with new Apostle of Solitude demo material (streaming here) or finally getting the chance to pick up ArgusBoldly Stride the Doomed, or Earthride‘s new reissue of their self-titled EP with tracks from SHoD last year, I mark the whole thing a win. Picking up Orodruin‘s limited version of In Doom and the Blizaro stuff too was a bonus, and discs from Super Invader and their prior incarnation, Bullets for Baby, have given me something to look forward to checking out. Just as soon as I stop listening to that Apostle of Solitude demo. Any day now…

I could go on, but the fact is, I came out of last weekend with so much stuff, I’m going to use it all to make a new podcast over the next couple days, so I’ll have more up about it one way or another and I’m sure that’ll be good times. Stay tuned for more to come.

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Buried Treasure in the Graveyard

Posted in Buried Treasure on August 18th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster

I alluded to it the other day in the third SHoD post, but wanted to save the details for this. To briefly recap: I got to Krug’s early Sunday for the third day of Stoner Hands of Doom XI in Frederick, Maryland, and having an hour to kill, decided to go record shopping. Not the first time in my life I’ve made that decision.

Using my magic cellophone, I got directions to CD/Game Exchange on N. Market St., and while on my way there, passed a sign on E. Patrick with Rock & Roll Graveyard printed on it. With hopes that it wasn’t some shitty irono-fashion boutique with $50 torn up Iron Maiden t-shirts on sale for dumb hipster girls who’ve never heard Killers, I nonetheless parked my car and decided to investigate.

A fucking treasure trove, this place was. If I bought vinyl — which I don’t — I wouldn’t have gotten out of there without putting down at least $100, but as it was, I spent only one-tenth of that (or $10) and still got a host of goodies for the effort. From a brief perusal of the CD bin, it was apparent that the owner, whose name is Chris Wolfe, knows his heavy. There was a lot I already had, but I did manage to find the SPV digipak reissue of the self-titled album from Uriah Heep offshoot Weed. It’s another one of those lost heavy ’70s classics that five people in the world preach like gospel and no one else has ever heard of, but man, it’s a pretty killer record. A bit all over the place, but when it locks in, it locks in hard. Dig it.

So that accounts for $5 of the total $10 I blew. The next $4 went to Black Sabbath tapes. Yes, plural. I spent $4 and got four tapes: Master of Reality, Vol. 4, Sabotage and Heaven and Hell. At a buck each, I couldn’t really ask for more. The only one I haven’t played is Vol. 4, because it would require clever fast-forwarding to get past “Changes,” but it was awesome to hear the little differences in the sound on Master of Reality, or the live version of “Sweet Leaf” tacked onto Sabotage — and Heaven and Hell, well, I’ll pretty much take that record on any format I can get it. An all-time favorite for one measly dollar, no way I was leaving that.

Wolfe, who also plays bass in Fat Chick Meat Haul, is a genuine record hoarder and has had the store open for about three months. Most everything he was selling came from his personal collection, and that included the tapes and the lime green 8-track edition of Jethro Tull‘s Aqualung that accounts for the last of the $10 I spent at Rock & Roll Graveyard. Yeah, the tape’s ripped, but what the hell do I care? Jeebus save me, it’s Aqualung on 8-track! I don’t have a player anyway — for a buck, I’m happy just to look at the damn thing and sing “Wind-Up” to myself.

The best part? Well, all this stuff was pretty great, especially for the price, but the best part came in talking to Wolfe about old records and heavy rock and whatever else. He told me about an album from a band called Tin House he’d picked up not too long ago, and when I said it sounded cool (because it did), he went ahead and burned me a copy, right there on the spot, free of charge. And he was right, it’s rightout proto-proggy heavy blues, from the Beatles “oooh-la-la-la” on “30 Weight Blues” to the driving lead of “Silver Star” and the string arrangements on “Lady of the Silent Opera.” I think I might dig it more even than the Weed record.

I don’t know when I’ll be back in Frederick again, but whenever it is, you can bet your ass I’ll be checking in on Rock & Roll Graveyard. Until then, I’ve got the Sabbath tapes in my car, the Tull on my office shelf, and the Weed ready to go. I never made it to CD/Game Exchange, but finding a shop of the niche caliber I did, I’m hardly crying over it.

Find Rock & Roll Graveyard on Thee Facebooks here.

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Buried Treasure in a Spiral Shadow

Posted in Buried Treasure on November 1st, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

It had been my intention to spend yesterday (Sunday) making the November podcast using the suggested Southern theme, but two things kept me from meeting that goal. First was homework, which can’t be helped. Second, and more pivotal, was the fact that I don’t yet own a physical copy of Spiral Shadow by Kylesa.

Fucking tragedy, right?

I tried to remedy this first at Sound Exchange in Wayne, my go-to shop for its proximity to my humble river valley and for the fact that if it’s between them and almost anyone else in the physical realm, I’d rather give them the money. They were a no dice. Thus began the agonizing, drawn-out process of not wanting to drive to Vintage Vinyl in Fords — an hour away on a good day — and knowing that I had zero chance of finding Spiral Shadow anywhere else near me.

My ride to Vintage Vinyl is agony, and not just because I have to spend the whole time anticipating what treasures I might find when I get there. It includes some of Northern New Jersey‘s most cripplingly boring roads, including Rt. 24, Rt. 78 and the ludicrously engineered Garden State Parkway. Nonetheless, at about four o’clock yesterday afternoon, after whining for nearly two hours about how much I didn’t want to make the trip — and no, it’s not lost on me that that’s long enough to make the trip twice over — off I went.

Should’ve called first. They didn’t have it. They’d only gotten a few copies and those were gone. Boy, did I feel stupid. Who does that? Who spends two hours in a car at the prospect of buying a CD without calling first to make sure the store has it?

I drowned my jackass sorrows in picking up The Elf Albums by Ronnie James Dio (and the rest of Elf, who aren’t cool enough to get mentioned on the cover), a used copy of Celestial Hi-Fi by Sheavy, who I never particularly enjoy hearing but keep buying the records of when I see them, Hippie Killer by Bongripper for $6.99, a used copy of the Boris and Ian Astbury collaboration, BXI, and, for $3.99, the version of Entombed‘s Wolverine Blues with the (apparently not) titular Marvel Comics character on the front.

The latter was obviously the find of the trip, but even that wasn’t enough to make me feel like any less of an idiot for spending that much of my day in blind pursuit of Spiral Shadow, which, it should be noted, I still haven’t gotten and is now holding up the November podcast. I don’t own Black Tusk either, but there are enough bands around who sound just like them that I can let that go. The Kylesa I pretty much need. The dude behind the counter said they’d be getting more this week, and I might try another run tomorrow, but needless to say, I’ll be calling first.

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Buried Treasure and Redscroll in Autumn

Posted in Buried Treasure on October 25th, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

When last I checked in with Wallingford, Connecticut‘s Redscroll Records, I walked out of there with a cassette copy of Torche‘s Meanderthal Demos. It’s a purchase I still consider the right move to have made, and as my most recent trip there was most likely going to be my last until Springtime, I figured I’d make the best of it. A thorough search of Redscroll‘s used section has done me right on numerous occasions, and this latest was no different. Dig this haul:

Bottom, Made in Voyage
Chrome Locust, Chrome Locust
Clutch, Jam Room
Fu Manchu, Daredevil
Jethro Tull, Aqualung
Lost Breed, Save Yourself
Lost Goat, Equator
My Dying Bride, Turn Loose the Swans
Natas, Delmar
The Obsessed, The Obsessed
Spiritual Beggars, Ad Astra

A few of those CDs I already own, but there are difference. The Fu Manchu is the original Bong Load Records version, where before I only had the reissue, and though it’s my third copy of Jam Room — probably my least favorite Clutch album — it’s the River Road Records pressing, and I think they only made six of them or something, so I was stoked to find it. Ad Astra is the Music for Nations digipak edition, and Chrome Locust is in a jewel case, where I’d only ever seen the digipak, so I grabbed that as well. The Jethro Tull had a sticker on it that it was the first CD issue, which made it too good to pass up. If you’re wondering, by the way, whether or not I believe everything I read on stickers stuck to jewel cases: Yes. Yes I do.

Lost Goat is on Man’s Ruin and I didn’t already own it, so that was a given. The Natas record I thought might have been a different catalog number than mine, but no, it’s a genuine double. I was bummed out on that until the other night when I thought to myself, “Gee, I sure would like to listen to the first Natas album,” and I actually had a copy on me because I was holding onto it to write about today. Maybe one just wasn’t enough.

Of the two Hellhound Records purchases, the highlight is unquestionably The Obsessed‘s The Obsessed. I had the Tolotta reissue previously, but you can’t beat the original. I had seen it for sale on Redscroll‘s eBay store, and asked if I could buy it right there in the shop. They were more than accommodating. The other Hellhound album, Lost Breed‘s Save Yourself, was the US version, where I’d only had the European before. Or maybe that’s reversed. I don’t know. The catalog numbers and back cover art are different. Apparently that’s enough for me these days.

I legitimately hadn’t owned the Bottom or My Dying Bride CDs (or the Lost Goat, which was meh), and I was stoked especially to hear the former, which didn’t disappoint. Crazy to think it’s been five years since Bottom put out their last album, but I suppose it has. Hearing their debut for the first time, it was easy to tell what Rise Above, Man’s Ruin and Small Stone all saw in the band, and by that I mean killer riffs and lethal groove. An excellent capper for an even more excellent haul.

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Buried Treasure: When Fantasy Meets Reality, Part 2

Posted in Buried Treasure on October 20th, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

I actually bought this CD the same day I picked up the previously-typed-about Desert Sessions Vol. I & II, but didn’t want to write about them in the same space since they were two such momentous purchases. Really. On a personal level. Momentous.

Sometimes my nerditude embarrasses even me.

But whatever. It’s the original Welcome to MeteorCity compilation on eBay for $15 — you’re god damn right I’m not letting it go. I grabbed it and waited for the mail like a kid about to take his X-ray specs to the girls’ locker room, throwing on its 17-track glory as soon as I could rip open the package it was shipped in. I was ecstatic to find the condition as advertised — “Like New” is open to interpretation sometimes — and though most of the lineup is well familiar to me with bands like Sixty Watt Shaman, Fatso Jetson, Goatsnake, The Atomic Bitchwax, Roadsaw, Dozer and Natas, it’s the first thing MeteorCity ever put out! MCY-001. Doesn’t get much cooler than that, as far as I’m concerned.

No doubt the highlight is the closer, an acoustic cut by John Garcia (and two guitarists) performing under the moniker J.M.J. called “To Believe,” but seriously, the only things Welcome to MeteorCity is missing are Wino and Orange Goblin and it would just about be a complete document of everything stoner rock should be. Rotors to Rust‘s “The Only One” proved to be much more stonerly than their All That’s Heavy album, which was a pleasant surprise, and Lowrider‘s awesome “Texas Parts 1 & 2″ was a great reminder of how incredible that band was in their time. I don’t know much about User or Drag Pack, so I got a little homework out of it, and any day on which I hear “Supersoul” by Dozer I count as a good day, this one included.

Of course, MeteorCity has grown and changed hands since Welcome to MeteorCity was released — the label put out a follow-up this year called Welcome Back to MeteorCity featuring current artists — and stoner rock has expanded in almost every direction possible as a genre despite everyone’s denial that they play it, but like the best of compilations, this captures not only a great group of bands, but also a genuine moment in the timeline of the style. I was lucky to find it so cheap and it’s already right up there with Roadrunner‘s Burn One Up comp as the best of the “various artists” section on my shelf. This is one instance where fantasy met reality and came out of it no worse for the wear.

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Buried Treasure: When Fantasy Meets Reality

Posted in Buried Treasure on October 7th, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

If this was GQ magazine and not The Obelisk (and if the idea had any appeal to me whatsoever), this piece would be about how I finally had a threesome and was pissed when the two chicks spent the whole time making out and I was left in the cold. Since it’s The Obelisk, it’s about record shopping. Hey, you get what you pay for.

This past weekend, I paid for a copy of The Desert Sessions Vol. I/Vol. II on Amazon. It was the cheapest I’d ever seen the CD for sale — and believe me, I checked regularly — and I knew from habitual eBay browsing that I wasn’t going to do any better in terms of price, so I grabbed it for $28. Even with the couple bucks shipping, it was a bargain, and as I’ve been pining away for this lost Man’s Ruin gem for longer than I at this point care to admit, I figured it was high time to bite the proverbial bullet and shell out the cash. So it was done.

Showed up in the mail yesterday and I popped it on this morning for the first time, and well, there are some cool tracks. “Girl Boy Tom’ has a good feel, and “Cowards Way Out” is among the more developed of the ideas present, and the few cuts at the end with vocals — “Johnny the Boy” might be my favorite of the bunch — pretty much rule, but there’s no way these songs could have lived up to my expectation. My life remains as it was yesterday: mostly in need of caffeine.

Still, I don’t have buyer’s remorse in the traditional sense because (1:) I know I got a good deal and (2:) I legitimately wanted to own The Desert Sessions Vol. I/Vol. II enough to justify the price. So what if the music didn’t reshape my perception of the world? Even if I listen to it two or three more times out of obligation and stick it on my shelf forever, at least I’ll be glad to see it every time I look over there. It’s not everything it could be, but it’s everything it is, and that’s enough.

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Buried Treasure: What Has Two Thumbs and Buys Needless Kyuss Promo Singles?

Posted in Buried Treasure on September 23rd, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

…This guy.

Okay, so maybe you don’t get the full effect of me pointing to myself with my thumbs while I say the punchline, but I think you get the point. It was eBay, it was seven dollars, and with that now-iconic image of the windmill on the front, there was no way I was going to let this promo single for Kyuss‘ “Demon Cleaner” from 1994’s Welcome to Sky Valley pass me by.

I’m more than willing to grant that buying a single song I already own several times over for seven dollars is just plain silly, but the artwork makes it. It was probably a radio single, because the back says it’s a promo — the “import” retail version was two separate discs; the height of major label B-side/ripoff chicanery was CD singles — and it wouldn’t make any sense for a full jewel case one-track single to have gone to press, even back in the economically roaring ’90s. The track, of course, is one of Kyuss‘ most recognized. In all honesty, there aren’t many situations in which I wouldn’t pay seven dollars to hear it.

And hey, at least it wasn’t the “Green Machine” single that went for $15 with nothing but a sticker with some Kyuss/Faith No More tour dates for a front cover. It’s by no means the least responsible CD-buying expenditure I’ve ever made, even as far as Kyuss goes, so I’m just glad to have the cover to stare at and another Kyuss jewel case to put on my shelf. It’s the little things.

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Buried Treasure: Haul That is Heavy (Back to Work Edition)

Posted in Buried Treasure on September 10th, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

It’s important to take care of yourself, and no, I’m not talking about eating right and not drinking and all that stuff. You can do that too if you want, but I mean that sometimes you have to do nice things just for you, because on even the shittiest of days, they can make it worthwhile. As a means for celebrating/mourning my recent return to office-type work, I looked up my wishlist on StonerRock.com‘s All That is Heavy webstore, and decided to treat myself like I’ve never treated myself before.

The box arrived in the mail yesterday and I found it when I returned home last night after work, class, a minor car accident and a much-needed visit to the bar. It was, to say the least, the highlight of my Thursday. Here’s the haul, alphabetized to the best of my limited ability:

Black Rainbows, Carmina Diablo
Cuda, Hellfire
Dark Tooth Encounter, Soft Monsters
Deadpeach, Psycle
The Durango Riot, Telemission
Honcho, Burning in Water, Drowning in Fire
Oak’s Mary, Car Wash
Oak’s Mary, Mathilda
Revelation, Never Comes Silence (Leaf Hound version)
Sonic Flower, Sonic Flower
Stake-off the Witch, Medusa
Stonewall Noise Orchestra, Vol. 1
Suma, Let the Churches Burn
Tank 86, Behold
Ten East, Extraterrestrial Highway
Ten East, The Robot’s Guide to Freedom
Terra Firma, Harms Way
Unsoul, Magnetic Mountain
Void Generator, We Have Found the Space
Wallrus, Burn the Shivers
Wretched, Black Ambience

Just what I needed, just when I needed it. I look forward to a weekend of killer rock the likes of which I won’t again experience for a long time.

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