Posted in Reviews on January 17th, 2017 by H.P. Taskmaster
Look. The thing is immense. One can barely hope to give a decent accounting of a compilation in a review in the easiest of scenarios, but to attempt to sum up the scope of Robustfellow Productions‘ Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3, which spans three CDs in its physical incarnation and tops out at an astonishing 48 tracks and four-plus hours of listening material when the digital bonus tracks are included from the Bandcamp version, the idea itself becomes silly. All one can really do is the same thing the listener likely does: make your way through it at your own pace, try to absorb as much as you can, and step back to admire the incredible amount of coordinating effort that must have gone into its making.
The latter is particularly impressive as what’s been touted as the final installment of the Kiev-based Robustfellow‘s Electric Funeral Cafe trilogy — nothing like going out with a bang — is bigger even than its predecessors, which came out in 2016 and 2015 and were “only” two discs apiece. The first two were broken down into component Electric and Funeral halves, arranged along this theme by discs. This edition works much the same way, with the Electric discs more focused on heavy rock and the Funeral disc dug into dirge-style doom and sludge, but adds the Cafe disc, on which one might be hear the Beatles-gone-electro-pop psych of Black Maloka, the Creedence Clearwater Revival-style boogie of Freeky Clean or the pure Doorsian meandering of The Jossers, along with more familiar names like Krobak (a Stoned Jesus side-project) or The Legendary Flower Punk (a The Grand Astoria side-project).
As with the earlier volumes, the bulk of the inclusions here highlight the underground boom in the Ukraine itself. 38 of the total 48 groups involved hail from the Ukraine. Two more are from Russia (The Legendary Flower Punk and A Foggy Realm, also on the Cafe disc), and one each from Japan (Eternal Elysium, on the Electric disc), Finland (Loinen, Funeral disc), the US (Contra, Electric), Sweden (Suffer Yourself, Funeral), Belarus (Nebulae Come Sweet, Funeral), the UK (Sons of Alpha Centauri, Cafe), and Italy (Le Scimmie, Funeral). It’s easy to get lost in the sprawl of a release like this, certainly, but worth noting all the same that this is the first of the Electric Funeral Cafe offerings to branch outside the Ukraine itself, so even as Robustfellow ends the series, it does so by reaching into new territories, making the project all the more impressive. One imagines that if the label kept it going, it would only continue to grow.
Not that it’s lacking in its current form, of course. Pick your poison and it’s likely here somewhere, from the progressive heavy vibes of Stonefromthesky and Ethereal Riffian on the Electric disc to the deathly chug of Chainsaw Jack‘s “Crashing Waves” and post-hardcore-sludge of Nebulae Come Sweet on the Funeral disc to the ’90s-style psych of Vermilion Nocturne and beat-backed drone of Submatukana‘s “Genesis” — which boasts a sampled Bible reading amid creepy whispered vocals — on the Cafe disc. There are, of course, a host of bands here who aren’t so easily fit into one category or another, as Dreadnought foreshadow on the Electric disc some of the screaming that will be a running theme throughout most of the Funeral disc, and the huge Ufomammut-style roll, push and echoes of Soom on Funeral do likewise for Cafe, but each piece of Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3 offers something distinct from the others, and so the themes are not only ably established, but solidified while jumping from band to band, city to city, country to county, atmosphere to atmosphere.
And as ever for a worthy various-artists release, Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3 presents a number of curios warranting further investigation. In particular, Lviv’s 1914, who lead off the Funeral disc with “8×50 mm Repetiergewehr M95” would seem to have a fixation with WWI — remind me to tell you sometime about how it was the fall of Western Civilization; unless you’re European, in which case you already know — and Lucifer Rising on the Electric disc blend modern buzz tone with classic blues rock thrust, but there are a swath of such interest-piquers as the comp plays out, and the real challenge lies in not being overwhelmed by all of it.
Much to the credit of Robustfellow and to the benefit of the acts contributing, everyone is given a genuine chance to ply their sonic wares, whether that’s a sub-three-minute death-doom rumbler like Monmuth‘s “Vail Seven” or the nine-minute heavy post-rock rollout of Stonefromthesky‘s “67,” which makes sense in a if-you’re-going-to-do-it-and-it’s-already-huge-then-don’t-skimp kind of way, and if the tradeoff for that is there’s a lot of music to dig into, it’s the kind of issue a listener should probably be thankful to take on, even if it requires multiple rounds to get through the front-to-back experience — a four-hour listening session is a rare gift in these busy times. Bottom line is Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3 will be there, whether one wants to take it as a whole or in pieces — as a document of Ukrainian heavy, yes, but also the scene’s will to reach outside itself and include others in a creative conversation — and as that movement continues to flourish and progress, such an impulse can only help broaden a scope already shown here to be considerable. And by considerable, I mean staggering.
Various Artists, Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3 (2017)
Posted in Whathaveyou on December 14th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster
If you’ve had the chance to check out the prior two installments of Robustfellow Productions‘ compilation series Electric Funeral Cafe, you already know they’re massive things. Huge in terms of the sheer amount of music they feature, and with a strong focus solely directed on the Ukrainian heavy scene, they bring to light some acts who those of us outside the region might not necessarily run into on a daily basis. Electric Funeral Cafe Vol. 3 is no different, but it’s worth noting that in addition to the good dose of acts from Kiev and Lviv it provides, it for the first time pushes international and boasts bands from the US, the UK, Belarus, Finland, Japan and Sweden included, so this final installment in the series — which comes with seven more tracks if you get the digital version — is by no means limited. Fitting for the mission of the series that it would expand even unto its conclusion.
I feel like the first line below under specifications really says it all: 41 bands, 9 countries, three discs, over three and a half hours of music. Sold.
Release date is Jan. 21. Here’s info from the PR wire:
V/A – ‘Electric Funeral Café vol.3’
Formats: 3xCD in Deluxe digipack & Download
Catalogue # RBF 016 | IHR005
Label: Robustfellow Prods. & Iron Hamster Recs.
Release Date: 21 January 2017
Specifications: – 41 bands from 9 countries on 3 CDs lasts for more than 3,5 hours – Including 23 special tracks that you hardly hear anywhere else – Plus 7 bonus tracks on digital version on bandcamp – The final chapter of EFC trilogy – Deluxe ltd.ed. that will consist of EFC vol.1,2,3 – Launch Party 21.I.2017 @ Winter Mass [“Monte Ray Live Stage”, Kyiv, UA]
Artwork design by Zinkovskaya Oksana Design and DTP by Marsym Gavronsky Made in Ukraine | 21.I.2017
List of robust bands involved in EFC vol.3 from A to Z: 1914 [Lviv, UA] 5R6 [Kharkiv, UA] A Foggy Realm [Moscow, RU] Atomic Simao [Kyiv, UA] Bichkraft [Kyiv, UA] Black Maloka [Kyiv, UA] Borum [Kyiv, UA] Chainsaw Jack [Kharkiv, UA] Contra [Cleveland, OH, USA] Dreadnought [Ternopil`, UA] Drunk Diver [Lviv, UA] Eternal Elysium [Nagoya, JP] Ethereal Riffian [Kyiv, UA] Filthy Rich Preacher [Cherkassy, UA] Freeky Cleen [Kyiv, UA] Krobak [Kyiv/Kharkiv, UA] Katakomba [Kyiv, UA] Le Scimmie [Vasto, IT] Les Gendarmes [Kyiv, UA] Loinen [Karjaa, FIN] Love’n’Joy [Kyiv, UA] Lucifer Rising [Kyiv, UA] MAUT [Ivano-Frankivsk, UA] Monmuuth [Dnipro, UA] Nebulae Come Sweet [Minsk, BY] Night on Fire [Zhytomyr, UA] Ningen-girai [Cherkassy, UA] Nödutgång:Självmord [Poltava, UA] Obriy [Uzhgorod,UA] Octopus Kraft [Drohobych/Lviv, UA] Onsager [Khmelnitsky, UA] OwlCraft [Cherkassy, UA] Risin Sabotage [Kyiv, UA] Small Depo [Kyiv, UA] Sons Of Alpha Centauri [Kent, UK] Soom [Kharkiv, UA] Space-man [Lviv, UA] stonefromthesky [Kyiv, UA] Straytones [Kyiv, UA] Submatukana [Dnipro, UA] Suffer Yourself [Kyiv, UA/Linköping, SWE] The Curse Of Wendigo [Kharcyzk/Kyiv, UA] The Jossers [Kalush, UA] The Legendary Flower Punk [St.Petersburg, RU] Trip Inside Me [Kyiv, UA] Tungu [Chernihiv,UA] Vermilion Nocturne [Kyiv, UA] Warningfog [Kyiv, UA]
Posted in Whathaveyou on November 10th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster
From the moment the project was named, it was clear that The Legendary Flower Punk had the potential to be kind of all over the place. And what began as a solo vehicle for The Grand Astoria guitarist/vocalist Kamille Sharapodinov has played out that scenario to its most enticing effect yet on the new album, Zen Variations. Self-released by the band — yup, a band — the new full-length veers through deeply progressive krautrock experimentation. One could argue Sharapodinov‘s guitar is its guiding force, but the tracks, each of which is a “Zen” of one kind or another — much needed — toy with arrangement in a way that even The Grand Astoria at its boldest has yet to do.
Though as Sharapodinov took the time to explain, the two acts are also growing closer together in terms of lineup. Could the future belong to The Legendary Astoria? I guess we’ll have to wait to find out where it’s all heading. You won’t find me daring to speculate.
His words, more info on the new album, the lineup and upcoming tour dates for The Legendary Flower Punk follow, as culled from the internet and from Sharapodinov directly:
The Legendary Flower Punk – Zen Variations
“These tracks were written during last year and were stage tested during the tours we had in 2015-2016,” explains The Legendary Flower Punk guitarist/founder Kamille Sharapodinov. “The project now is The Grand Astoria’s de facto instrumental family outfit, since it includes TGA’s current drummer and the very first TGA bassist (the one who recorded the first album with us and then left). The music is jam-oriented and we are writing it together, which is the main difference from TGA where I write all the music alone.”
The Legendary Flower Punk, Zen Variations tracklisting: 1. Earthquake Zen 08:58 2. Urban Zen 07:46 3. Party Zen 05:11 4. Subway Zen 04:09 5. Warfield Zen 04:09 6. White Magick Zen 06:47 7. Christmas Zen 08:27
The Legendary Flower Punk is going to hit the road the release of new CD! Check the dates below.
The Legendary Flower Punk on tour: 12.11 Zelenograd (RU) “cinema” 13.11 Kaluga (RU) “garage” 19.11 Vilnius (LT) “Narauti” 20.11 Warsaw (PL) “2Kola” 22.11 Berlin (de) ” deep reason ‘ 23.11 Hamburg (DE) “227 Bar” 24.11 Halle (de) ” ha7″ 25.11 Karlsruhe (de) “Akk” 26.11 Würzburg (DE) “Cairo” 27.11 Nuremberg (de) “Artichoke” 28.11 Leipzig (de) “Mespotine sessions” 03.12 St. Petersburg (RU) “Zoccolo 2.0”
The Legendary Flower Punk is: Kamille Sharapodinov – guitars Mike Lopakov – bass Nik Kunavin – drums, percussion
The Legendary Flower Family: Danila Danilov – synth (3-6), metallophone (1) Denis Kirillov – acoustic grand piano (7), flute (7), fender rhodes piano (1) Ravil Azizov – clarinet (2, 4) Vladimir Ermolov – trumpet (1, 3, 5) Ekaterina Kulagina – saxophone (2) Slava Lobanov – trombone (2, 5) George Nefedov – balalaika (1) Alexander Karelin – mixing and mastering Sophia Miroedova – artwork
Posted in Reviews on October 7th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster
Last day. As ever, I am mentally, physically and spiritually exhausted by this process, but as ever, it’s been worth it. Today I do myself a couple favors in packing out with more familiar acts, but whatever, it’s all stuff I should be covering anyway, so if the order bothers you, go write your own 50 reviews in a week and we can talk about it. Yeah, that’s right. That’s what I said. Today we start with Swans. Everything’s a confrontation.
Once again, I hope you’ve found something somewhere along this bizarre, careening path of music that has resonated with you, something that will stick with you. That’s why we’re here. You and me. If you have, I’d love to know about it. Until then, one more time here we go.
Quarterly Review #41-50:
Swans, The Glowing Man
Oh fucking please. You want me to try to summarize The Glowing Man – the culmination and finale of an era of Swans that Michael Gira began now more than half a decade ago – in a single review? Even putting aside the fact that the record two hours long, the notion is ridiculous. If there ever was a chart, the scope here is well off it. The material unfolds and churns and is primal and lush at once on “Cloud of Forgetting,” genuinely chaotic on the 28-minute title-track, and it ends with a drone lullaby, but seriously, what the fuck? Some shit is just beyond, and if you don’t know that applies to Swans by now, it’s your own fault. You want a review? Fine. I listened to the whole thing. It ate my fucking soul, chewed it with all-canine teeth and then spit it out saying “thanks for the clarity” and left me dazed, bloodied and humbled. There’s your fucking review. Thanks for reading.
Oslo trio Virus have long since established that they’re a band working on their own wavelength. Memento Collider (on Karisma Records) is the jazzy post-black metallers’ first album in five years and brings together adventurous rhythms, poetic declarations, dissonant basslines and – in the case of “Rogue Fossil,” the occasional hook – in ways that are unique unto Virus. Look at this site and see how often I use the word “unique.” It doesn’t happen. Virus, however, are one of a kind. Memento Collider makes for a challenging listen front to back on its six-track/45-minute run, but it refuses to dumb itself down or dull its progressive edge, bookending its longest (that’s opener “Afield” at 10:41; immediate points) two tracks around jagged explorations of sound like “Steamer” and “Gravity Seeker,” which engage and intrigue in kind after the melodic push of “Dripping into Orbit” and leading into “Phantom Oil Slick,” a righteous affirmation of the angular thrust at the core of Virus’ approach.
In 2010, Moscow troupe The Re-Stoned issued their first EP, Return to the Reptiles, and being obviously concerned with evolution, they’ve now gone back and revisited that debut release with Reptiles Return, a reworking of the four studio tracks that made up the initial version – “Return,” “Run,” “The Mountain Giant” and “Sleeping World.” The opener is a straight re-recording, as is one other, where another is remixed and the other two remastered, and Reptiles Return – which is presented on limited vinyl through Clostridium Records and a CD box set with bonus tracks via Rushus Records – pairs them with more psychedelic-minded soundscape pieces like “Winter Witchcraft,” “Walnut Talks,” the proggy “Flying Clouds” and sweetly acoustic “Roots Patter,” that showcase where founding multi-instrumentalist Ilya Lipkin is taking the band going forward. The result is a satisfying side A/B split on the vinyl that delights in heavy riffing for its own sake in the first half and expands the scope in the second, which should delight newcomers as well as those who’ve followed The Re-Stoned along this evolutionary process.
It may well be the fate of San Francisco’s hard-touring, ass-kicking, genre-refusing duo Castle to be terminally underappreciated, but that has yet to stop them from proliferating their righteous blend of thrash, doom and classic, fistpump-worthy metal. Their latest outing, Welcome to the Graveyard, arrives via respected purveyor Ván Records, and entices in atmosphere and execution, cohesively built tracks like “Hammer and the Cross” and the penultimate “Down in the Cauldron Bog” finding a balance of personality and delivery that the band has long since honed on stage. The Dio-esque barnburner riff of “Flash of the Pentagram” makes that cut a highlight, but as they roll out the cultish vibes of “Natural Parallel” to close, there doesn’t seem to be much on the spectrum of heavy metal that doesn’t fit into Castle’s wheelhouse. For some bands, there’s just no justice. Four records deep, Castle have yet to get their due, and Welcome to the Graveyard is further proof of why they deserve it.
One can hear a new wave of modern doom taking shape in Chained to Oblivion, the Prosthetic Records debut from Arizona one-man outfit Spirit Adrift. The work of Nate Garrett alone in the studio, the full-length offers five mostly-extended tracks as a 48-minute 2LP of soaring, emotional and psychedelic doom à la Pallbearer, but given even further breadth through progressively atmospheric passages and a marked flow in its transitions. To call it personal seems superfluous – it’s a one-man band, of course it’s personal – but Garrett (also formerly of metallers Take Over and Destroy) brings a palpable sense of performance to the songwriting, and by the time he gets to the 11-minutes-apiece finale duo of the title-track and “Hum of Our Existence,” it’s easy to forget you’re not actually listening to a full band, not the least because of the vocal harmonies. Calling Chained to Oblivion a promising first outing would be underselling it – this is a project with serious potential.
Unpredictable from the start of opener “Flesh ‘n’ Steel,” Once upon the Wings is a first-time multinational collaborative effort from Robbi Robb of California’s 3rd Ear Experience and Paul Pott of Germany’s The Space Invaders. Its five tracks/42 minutes arrive through no less than Nasoni Records, and provide a curious and exploratory blend of the organic and the inorganic in sound, as one finds the 11-minute “Grass” no less defined by its percussion solo, guitar line and ‘60s-style vocal than the electronic drums that underscore the layered wash of noise in its midsection. Further definition hits with the 16-minute centerpiece “Prophecy #1,” which works in a space-rocking vein, but the shorter closing duo of the catchy “Looney Toon” and darkly progressive “Space Ear” show a creative bent that clearly refuses to be tamed. Robb & Pott, as a project, demonstrates remarkable potential throughout this debut, as they seem to have set no limits for where they want their sound to go and they seem to have the command to take it there.
Most of the tracks on Brooklyn progressive noise rockers Family’s second album and Prosthetic Records debut, Future History, come paired with interludes. That cuts some of the growling intensity of winding pieces like “Funtime for Bigboy” and “Floodgates,” and emphasizes the generally experimental spirit of the record as a whole, broadening the scope in sound and theme. I’m somewhat torn as to how much this actually works to the 51:50 outing’s benefit, as shorter pieces like “Prison Hymn” and “Transmission,” while adding dynamic to the sound and narrative drama, also cut the immediacy in impact of “The Trial” or closer “Bone on Bone,” but it’s entirely possible that without them Future History would be an overwhelming tumult of raw prog metal. And while the play back and forth can feel cumbersome when one considers how effectively “Night Vision” bridges the gap between sides, I’m not sure that’s not what Family were going for in the first place. It’s not supposed to be an easy record, and it isn’t one.
France’s Les Discrets haven’t had a studio offering since 2012’s Ariettes Oubliées (review here), and while they released Live at Roadburn (review here) last year documenting their 2013 set at that festival, there’s little there that might presage the stylistic turn the Fursy Teyssier-led outfit takes on their new EP, Virée Nocturne (on Prophecy Productions). With four tracks – two new, complete recordings, one demo and the last a remix of the opener by Dälek and Deadverse – Les Discrets attempt to find a stylistic middle ground between post-rock and trip-hop, and for the most part, they get there. “Virée Nocturne” itself leads off and can be jarring on first listen, but successfully blends the lush melodicism for which the band is known with electronic-driven beats, and both “Capricorni. Virginis. Corvi” and even the demo “Le Reproche” continue to build on this bold shift. The finale remix adds over two minutes to “Virée Nocturne,” but uses that time to make it even more spacious and all the more immersive. For anyone who thought they might’ve had Les Discrets figured out, the surprise factor here should be palpable.
Presented across four tracks beginning with the 12-minute and longest-of-the-bunch (immediate points) “The Corpse of Dr. Funkenstein” (double points for the reference), II, the aptly-titled second album from Liquido di Morte expands the progressive atmospherics of the Italian four-piece’s 2014 self-titled debut (review here) without losing sight of the performance and spirit of exploration that helped bring it to life. Isaak’s Giacomo H. Boeddu guests on brooding vocals and whispers for “The Saddest of Songs I’ll Sing for You,” which swells in seething intensity as it moves forward, while “Rodents on the Uphill” casts a vision of post-space rock and closer “Schwartz Pit” rounds out with crash and wash that seems only to draw out how different the two halves of II actually are. Not a complaint. Liquido di Morte make their way across this vast span with marked fluidity, and if they prove anything throughout, it’s that they’re able to keep their command wherever they feel like using it to go.
Canberra, Australia, trio Witchskull initially released their debut full-length, The Vast Electric Dark, last year, and caught the attention of the cross-coastal US partnership between Ripple Music and STB Records, who now align for a reissue of the eight-tracker. Why is quickly apparent. In addition to having earned a fervent response, The Vast Electric Dark basks in quality songcraft and doomly, heavy vibes, keeping a consistent pace while rolling through the semi-metallic push of “Raise the Dead” or the later rumble/shred of “Cassandra’s Curse.” All the while, guitarist/vocalist Marcus De Pasquale provides a steady presence at the fore alongside bassist Tony McMahon and drummer Joel Green, and what’s ultimately still a straightforward rocker of an album finds a niche for itself between varies underground styles of heavy. Between the balance they strike across their 37 minutes and the energy that courses through their songs, Witchskull’s The Vast Electric Dark proves easily worth the look it’s getting.
Kind of hard to get a sense from the video for the track, but the leadoff and longest piece on The Re-Stoned‘s latest collection, Reptiles Return, is actually pretty colorful. And by that I mean the clip isn’t. Black and white for the duration, it nonetheless fades smoothly into and out of various shots mostly of founding guitarist Ilya Lipkin — also a mysterious robed figure in the woods — as it complements the song’s dreamy tones and heavy psychedelic warmth. The Moscow-based outfit released Reptiles Return in August on Clostridium Records and also have it out as a limited box edition through Rushus Records accompanied by the band’s first outing, 2010’s Return to the Reptiles.
The titular similarity is, of course, no coincidence. Return to the Reptiles was The Re-Stoned‘s first outing and Reptiles Return, if I read it right, seems to be Lipkin‘s way of going back to the start in an attempt to rebuild and expand on the foundation that release laid down. “Return” seems to have been one of the ones re-recorded entirely — it’s two minutes longer here than in the original version — but it works well opening the always adventurous instrumentalists’ first full-length since 2014’s Totems (review here), which came out on R.A.I.G. as the band’s fourth album overall. And to hear them tell it, as they do below, there’s much more to come as well in the form of a new double-LP, so all the better.
Not sure I’d call the video a cinematic masterwork, but it gets the job done and is a cool chance to check out the track, so either way, please enjoy:
The Re-Stoned, “Return” official video
Idea, Producing & Original graphics by Ilya Lipkin, Camera by Wolfsblood, Video Editing by Arkadiy Fedotov.
Special thanks to Vasily Arzamastsev, Wolfsblood, Arkadiy Fedotov, CSBR, Maltvormast and Andrey Kiselev.
Ilya Lipkin – guitars, bass Ivan Fedotov – drums Mixed by Ilya Lipkin, Mastered by Janne Stark and Ilya Lipkin. Released on the album “Reptiles Return” /Clostridium Records – CR 022/ Rushus records – RR 03 / 2016
“Reptiles Return”- vinyl release of 8 tracks LP (Clostridium Records – CR 022) and 10 tracks on limited edition CD-R with “Reptiles” BOX Set (Rushus records – RR 03). This time the Grandmaster of this Moscow psychedelic fuzz orchestra Ilya Lipkin and associates made an attempt to rethink the legacy of the primal days of the band – the very first EP “Return to the Reptiles” with one track remixed, two – re-recorded a new and two more – remastered. The new album also includes new songs (4 in vinyl version and 6 in digital) covering more broad sonic space – acoustic pieces and psychedelic soundscapes which have been composed and recorded over the period of the last three years. “Reptiles Return” is a good appetizer for those fans tired of waiting for the brand new double LP due to release in the nearest future.
Posted in Whathaveyou on June 14th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster
Always adventurous and never far off from their next outing, Russian psychedelic progressives The Grand Astoria have just issued a collection of tracks from members’ other outfits. This follows up on 2015’s Soft Focus quieter outing and the grandiose, classically-influenced The Mighty Few, and brings together cuts from The Legendary Flower Punk and other side-projects related to The Grand Astoria proper. To coincide with the latest in a prolific string of outings, The Grand Astoria will hit the road next month through Western Europe, hitting France and the Iberian Peninsula over the course of two weeks before August brings a few select festival dates, among them Yellowstock in Belgium.
This follows up on a run the band did between February and March of this year, as they continue to be somewhat underappreciated in the wider European sphere despite years of steady, quality work. They’re a lot to keep up with at this point — admittedly I feel like I fail to do so more often than not — but their material has always proven to be well worth the effort.
Dates, of which there are reportedly more to come, and other info follow:
First bunch of dates of The Grand Astoria summer tour. We are building around these ones. If you are interested in booking us – please mail to: email@example.com
Posted in Whathaveyou on February 18th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster
It’s not every band in the world you’d believe when they say they’re going to play a different set each night of a tour, but coming from Saint Petersburg progressive heavy rockers The Grand Astoria — who have both the sense of adventure and the back catalog to make such a thing possible — I have no trouble at all imagining they’ll live up to their word. The prolific outfit’s latest outing is last year’s The Mighty Few, a two-song full-length exploration that melds classical and riffy ideas together in a concoction that for just about anyone else would fall flat. Somehow, The Grand Astoria make that work, as you can hear for yourself on the player under the tour dates below.
Not their first tour by any stretch, but also noteworthy since that different set each night will reportedly include a generous helping of new material. All the better from these guys, whose evolution remains ongoing.
The boss of booking is here! Come to our shows! We play different set every night. Don’t miss and tell your friends.
We promise you a nice set with a bunch of absolutely new songs from the forthcoming album! They are epic!
Poster by Sophia Miroedova.
The Grand Astoria on tour: 19.02 – Wroclaw (PL) – Ciemna Strona Miasta 20.02 – Katowice (PL) – Pub Korba 21.02 – Krakow (PL) – Jazz Rock Cafe 22.02 – Budapest (HU) – Instant 23.02 – Graz (A) – Wakuum 24.02 – Ljubljana (SI) – Gromka 25.02 – Zero Branco (IT) – Altroquando 26.02 – Milan (IT) – Cox 18 27.02 – Cremona (IT) – Circolo Arci Arcipelago 28.02 – Pescara (IT) – Orange Rock Cafe 29.02 – Palermo (IT) – Fabbrica 102 01.03 – Catania (IT) – Magazzini Sonori 02.03 – Reggio Calabria (IT) – Limitazione 03.03 – Bologna (IT) – Freakout 04.03 – Trieste (IT) – Tetris 05.03 – Maribor (SI) – Gustaf Pekarna 06.03 – Bistrica ob Sotli (SI) – Klub Metulj 07.03 – Brno (CZ) – Bajkazyl 08.03 – Ostrava (CZ) – Plan B 09.03 – Hradec Kralove (CZ) – Klub 4 10.03 – Prague (CZ) – Dead Jack Club 11.03 – Karlsruhe (DE) – Cafe Bistro KA 12.03 – Nuremberg (DE) – Artischocken 15.03 – Plzen (CZ) – Divadlo Pod Lampou 16.03 – Halle (Saale) (DE) – Huhnermanhattan 17.03 – Dresden (DE) – Sabotage 18.03 – Potsdam (DE) – Spartacus 19.03 – Berlin (DE) – Urban Spree 20.03 – Warsaw (PL) – 2Kola
Posted in Whathaveyou on September 15th, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster
You might not always know what Russian progressive heavy rockers The Grand Astoria are up to on any given day, but rest assured they’re always up to something. The restless and accordingly prolific outfit are looking to raise funds for an impending European tour — their umpteenth, to be specific — and have issued a new single, “Masterplan,” in order to help pay for stuff like having merch made, gas, food, lodging, etc. Their asking price for a download? A euro. I’ve seen crowdfunding efforts asking way more and delivering way less than the hook of the new track from the ever-expansive outfit.
The Grand Astoria released an acoustic EP earlier this summer called Soft Focus, and already have a 2015 full-length under their collective belt in the classically-vibing The Mighty Few, as well as a split with Samavayo that Setalight Records released as a 10″ (review here), but next up seems to be a split between all the bands associated with The Grand Astoria‘s members, whether it’s The Legendary Flower Punk or, presumably, Lucifer in the Sky with Diamonds.
Cool things in the works. Here’s the info and track stream:
Hello dear heavy psych lovers and friends of The Grand Astoria Here is the new electric song by yours truly. It will be a part of the very special The Grand Astoria Family split record which will also include new music from The Legendary Flower Punk, Organic Is Orgasmic and our other side-projects!
We decided to publish the first song from it to raise some funds for our forthcoming tour! We need to rent a van, print the merch, pay for the studio so every dime will be really appreciated!!! And the most important – THIS SONG IS REALLY WORTH IT Enjoy and share!