Híbrido Sign to Spinda Records for Debut Album I

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 17th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

There isn’t any audio yet to share, but you’re going to want to watch out for this one. Híbrido‘s debut album arrives after a year-plus of murmurings about a side-project from Poti and Pow of Atavismo that reunites the former with his ex-Viaje a 800 bandmate, guitarist Jose Angel “Oceano” Galindo, and now it’s announced that the record is mostly done and will see release through Spinda Records sometime in the coming months, presumably in the New Year. I don’t even have track titles yet, but its centerpiece is a 13-minute jam that goes from fuzzy roll right into prog-psych wash with a fluidity that’s nothing short of splendid. Again, keep an eye out.

Expect more to come on Híbrido one way or the other as we get closer to the release of the album, which has suitably been dubbed I, including I assume some form of audio/visual media, which you won’t find here because there’s nothing to directly share, although the link at the bottom of this post goes to some rehearsal footage from Thee Facebooks. In the meantime, the label and band announced their union thusly:

hibirido spinda records

Says Spinda Records:

Have you ever been onto something very big and that very little people know yet? We do, the feeling is brutal and soon we will give you all the details… at the moment we can only advance that the algecireños Híbrido join the #spindarecords family for their debut debut.

And who are Híbrido? Very Easy, cream of #lanovena: Poti (Atavismo, mind!, Viaje a 800), Zoa (the bradlys), José Angel (Viaje a 800) and pow (Atavismo, mind! ). Almost done!

Says Híbrido:

Four years ago we started a beautiful project, which took us to see the light as it deserves, but… today is a reality.

We are excited to announce that Híbrido will release our debut album with Spinda Records, who has trusted us to get our musical manifesto, that in which we have so much effort. Thank you infinite.

This has just begun, little by little you will discover what we are… soon in your ears!

Híbrido is:
Jose Angel “Oceano” Galindo – Guitarra
Zoa Rubio – Guitarra
Jose Pot – Bajo
Sandri Pow – Batería

https://www.facebook.com/hibridopysch/
https://www.facebook.com/SpindaRecords

https://www.facebook.com/sandri.pow/videos/10210644527770563/

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Kristonfest 2019 Tickets on Sale; Kadavar, Church of the Cosmic Skull, Arabrot and Turbowolf to Play

Posted in The Obelisk Presents, Whathaveyou on August 31st, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Looks like good times ahead. I’ve been asked if I’d like to be a media sponsor for Kristonfest 2019 and my answer was pretty much, “duh yes.” I framed it nicer than that, but that was the gist of it. The festival will be held in Madrid on May 10 (a pre-show) and May 11 (the fest proper) and so far four bands have been announced: KadavarArabrotTurbowolf and Church of the Cosmic Skull, giving an immediate sense of variety in underground heavy from the ultra-harmonies of the latter UK outfit to the mega-hooks of the former to Arabrot‘s noise assault and Turbowolf‘s classic-styled hard rock. Much to dig for just being four acts so far, but I have it on good authority more killer stuff is to be announced, so keep an eye out.

The info below was run through a major internet company’s translation matrix, so keep that in mind as you peruse, but I think the point gets across. Tickets are on sale now:

kristonfest 2019 poster

Kristonfest 2019

FRIDAY, MAY 10 | WARM UP PARTY KRISTONFEST 2019
SALA CARACOL (MADRID)

SATURDAY MAY 11 | KRISTONFEST 2019
SALA LA RIVIERA (MADRID)

For this 2019, the main novelty is that the next edition will be composed of 2 days: A first day framed in a Warm Up Party or party presentation in the Caracol Room and a second day in the usual La Riviera, both in Madrid.

Having said that, the eighth edition of the Kristonfest will be held on May 10 and 11, 2019 and as the first round of confirmations we are proud to present the KADAVAR Germans, who in a short time have become the spearhead of a new generation of artists who have revived and refreshed the most classic sounds of legends like Black Sabbath or Pentagram, adding rhythms more typical of psychedelia or stoner-rock.

Another great confirmation is the TURBOWOLF, English quartet that burst with great force with the edition of its first disc in 2011 and that dragged a debt after having recorded 3 discs and still not to come to Madrid to present it. The wait has been long but we are sure it will be worth it!

In similar circumstances we find CHURCH OF THE COSMIC SKULL, a kind of hippie commune formed by 7 musicians reminiscent of the Electric Light Orchestra, Deep Purple or Fleetwood Mac and that in the European scene is one of the sensations of the moment, Mission fulfilled! It will be the first time they have performed in Spain and we are sure that their show will be one of the highlights of Kristonfest 2019.

To close this first round of confirmations, we are especially excited to announce ARABROT, one of the successful bands of the past Roadburn and that will delight us with their vision of the darker side of rock, evoking the icy landscapes of their native Norway and reminding us of brushstrokes of artists that we admire a lot like Wovenhand, Neurosis or Melvins to name a few.

TICKETS ALREADY ON SALE: WWW.KRISTONFEST.COM

https://www.facebook.com/events/391742591310823/
http://www.kristonfest.com
https://www.facebook.com/kristonfest
https://twitter.com/Kristonfest
https://www.instagram.com/kristonfest

Church of the Cosmic Skull, “Evil in Your Eye” official video

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Fuzz Forward Post “Despairs” Video; Announce Spanish Tour Dates

Posted in Bootleg Theater on August 23rd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

fuzz forward

Let’s face it: just about anyone can make a music video these days. If you’ve got a phone and an Instagram filter, you’re in. Worked for Kadavar, if you’ll recall. But even taking into account the (relative) democratization of media, it’s one thing to make a music video and quite something else to make a music video and hang out with your dogs in the process. Interspersed with performance footage of Barcelona four-piece Fuzz Forward rocking out the song “Despairs” from their debut album, Out of Nowhere (review here), are clips of their dogs hanging out with them on stage, chewing on drumsticks, etc. Charm goes a long way in my book, always.

Charm, however, is hardly the only strength working in Fuzz Forwards favor on Out of Nowhere. The album was released earlier this year with the formidable backing of Red Sun Records, Discos MacarrasOdio Sonoro, and Spinda Records, and its penchant for melody and crisply-produced heavy rock came coupled with a grunge-style melody specifically attributable in the vocals of Juan to an Alice in Chains influence. My old man ears recall a time when it seemed like every rock singer was copping Layne Staley‘s bottom-of-the-mouth approach — some made good careers off doing so — but in this context and in this age where old flannels are new again, Fuzz Forward sound fresh and “Despairs” captures the fluidity of rhythm and the solidity of craft that they brought to the entirety of the record.

Also noteworthy is that the video was made in the Rocksound venue in Barcelona, a respected space the banner for which appears in any number of excellent live photos of groups touring through. The Iberian heavy rock scene has never had the kind of boom one finds in Germany or Sweden, but has always had its own spin on underground methods, and to see Fuzz Forward emerge as a next-generation take on that is all the more exciting. And it’s nice to have friends with venues that let you film videos there and bring your dogs. An all-around win.

Fuzz Forward put it in drive this Fall on a succession of shows keeping in good company all the while. Tour dates follow the clip here, as sent along the PR wire:

Fuzz Forward, “Despairs” official video

Barcelona’s grunge infected four piece FUZZ FORWARD are keeping themselves busy. They now present us their first video. Despairs is the opening track from their debut album “Out Of Nowhere” and also the first single. The band seems to like to keep all things under control. In other words, DIY philosophy. They shot, edited and directed the video, just like they did producing and mixing their record.

After the release of “Out Of Nowhere” cd (Red Sun Records) and vinyl (Discos Macarras, Odio Sonoro, Spinda Records, Red Sun Records), now the band is eager to spread some fuzz around the peninsula for the first time. So far cities confirmed are Barcelona, Madrid, Bilbao, Santander, Alicante, Terrassa … more to be added soon.

– DESPAIRS VIDEO –

Upcoming shows:

14 sept – Terrassa @ The Cavern (+ Tears In Rain play Mad Season’s “Above”)
28 sept – Bilbao @ tbc
29 sept – Santander @ Rock Beer The New (+ Wet Cactus)
5 octubre – Reus @ tbc
6 octubre – Alicante @ Surnia Fest ( + Rosy Finch +…)
7 octubre – Barcelona @ Rocksound (+ Sasquatch)
3 noviembre – Barcelona @ Auditori Can Batlló de Sants (+ Matote)
30 noviembre – Barcelona @ Freedonia (+ Keloidrop + Golíat)
22 diciembre – Madrid @ Wurlitzer Ballroom (+ Electric Valley + Krazark)

… more to be announced soon!

Fuzz Forward is:
Juan – Vocals
Jordi Vaquero – Bass
Marc Rockenberg – Drums
Edko Fuzz – Guitar

Fuzz Forward on Thee Facebooks

Fuzz Forward on Twitter

Fuzz Forward on Instagram

Fuzz Forward on Bandcamp

Red Sun Records website

Red Sun Records on Thee Facebooks

Red Sun Records on Twitter

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Black Lotus Post New Single; Sons of Saturn Due Oct. 19

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 16th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

black lotus

Barcelona doomers Black Lotus are set to make their full-length debut Oct. 19 through Inverse Records with Sons of Saturn, an eight-track outing for which a video of the title-track is now streaming. Their sound preaches to the converted in doom pretty well and shouldn’t take experienced heads long to get on board. It’s a lyric video, and the song is upwards of eight minutes long, so if you’re getting introduced to the four-piece, as I am, it’s a significant way to accomplish that means.

The PR wire brings info about the band and the record below, and it’s pretty much business as usual — artwork, release date, band background, tracklisting, etc. — until you get to the lineup of the band itself and the unveiling of the stage name Charlie Goatskull. I’ve been at this a while and I’ve run into a lot of dudes who call themselves a lot of things, but I feel like Charlie Goatskull has to be up there. Like someone reads the social register and sees Charlie and it’s like, “Of the Barcelona Goatskulls? Very good then.” I love it.

Check it out:

black-lotus-sons-of-saturn

Heavy Doom Metal Band BLACK LOTUS to release album in October, first single out now!

Barcelona-based Heavy & Epic Doom Metal band BLACK LOTUS released a first single from the upcoming album ‘Sons of Saturn’. The album is released in October 19th 2018 by Inverse Records.

Black Lotus is founded by Hug Ballesta in 2015. After finding a proper line-up they headed into the Moontower Studio at the end of 2017. The album is recorded and mixed by Javi Félez and mastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege, Portland, Oregon.

Hug Ballesta comments:

“We have chosen Sons of Saturn as the first single because it represents by itself the key sounds we search for as a band. We are lovers of both the classic bands and the new sounds and styles in metal: rawness, heavy-doomy-slow tempos, but at the same time catchy melodies that can equally transport the listener to apparently opposed moods. We are delighted that Inverse Records helps us spread our music… can’t wait for the feedback!”

Black Lotus’ sound is grounded in the diverse influences of the band members. Traditional Heavy Metal is the common factor and driving force of the band, but alternative sounds of the 90s, Stoner Rock, Doom Metal and post metal genres are also colours in their palette. Their compositions are embracing all those influences without limitations or dogmas. Likewise, lyrics are eminently symbolic, expressing a dystopic vision of society and their view of the world. Classic mythology, occultism, and personal experiences and visions are the sources for their compositions.

Track list:
01. Kings
02. The Sandstorm
03. The Pyre – intro.
04. Protective Fire
05. Taurobolium
06. Sons of Saturn
07. The Swamp
08. Return to Erebus – closing.

Album cover by Luca Solo Macello.

Line-up:
Charlie Gotaskull – Rhythm & Lead guitars
Cristian Vil – Bass Guitar, Vocals
Hug Ballesta – Drums, Vocals
Caio Pastore – lead & rhythm guitars (live)

https://www.facebook.com/orderoftheblacklotus
https://orderoftheblacklotus.bandcamp.com/releases
https://www.instagram.com/blacklotuscultband
https://twitter.com/BandBlackLotus
https://www.facebook.com/inverserecords
https://twitter.com/inverserecords
https://www.instagram.com/inverserecords/

Black Lotus, “Sons of Saturn” official video

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Review & Full EP Premiere: Atavismo, Valdeinfierno

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on July 20th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Atavismo Valdeinfierno

[Click play above to stream Atavismo’s Valdeinfierno EP in full. It’s out July 23 on Adansonia Records.]

True to form, even a short release from Atavismo has a pervasive sense of atmosphere. The Algeciras, Spain, band blew any and all minds willing to follow along with last year’s Inerte (review here), and to be perfectly honest, I’m still a little up in the air as to whether Inerte was their full-length debut or a sophomore outing after their first release, which was 2014’s Desintegración (review here). As it’s comprised of four central tracks, Valdeinfierno, which is their new ostensible extended-player and debut on Adansonia Records, shares some structure in common with that first offering, but the palette has grown exponentially. It’s been four years, which can be nothing in the life of a band, and Atavismo do retain some of the heavy psychedelic underpinnings that they began to develop into a more progressive mindset with Inerte, but Valdeinfierno is no less a leap from the last outing than that was from the first.

It once more finds guitarist/vocalist/synthesist Jose “Poti” Moreno (ex-Viaje a 800Mind!), bassist/vocalist Mateo and drummer/vocalist Sandri Pow (also ex-Mind!) expanding their sound. They’ve expanded the lineup of the band as well, welcoming Koe on keys, synth and vocals. I’m not sure who contributes what to which parts of “La Palmosa,” “Quejigo,” “Valdeinfierno” and “Sapo Sagapo” but with the intro “Tropmetillas de la Muerte” and the outro “Etreum al ed Sallitemport” — yes, the outro is the intro backwards, in content as well as name — Valdeinfierno is all the more about progression and showcasing different sides of their personality, with each cut offering something different to stand it out from its surroundings, whether it’s the proggy shuffle of “La Palmosa” or the folk-tinged acoustic/electric blend of “Sago Sagapo” or the jam into which “Quejigo” so fluidly launches or the title-track’s sudden turn from drifting heavy psych into Iberian-folk-tinged percussion and jamming. More and more, Atavismo seem to be defining their own stylistic parameters outside of prescribed genre lines. This only suits them all the more.

If we’re arguing that Valdeinfierno is an EP — and since the band says it is, basically we’re not arguing at all beyond a hypothetical — a point in favor of that position is the diversity within the tracks. Even from where they were early last year, Atavismo have taken very clear steps to move forward. That would be all well and good, except for the fact that there’s still such a flow between the songs. At 28 minutes, it could go either way– the debut, for what it’s worth, was 37, and Inerte was 42 — and the way these songs work off each other and seem to add to an overarching statement of stylized progadelic intent speaks to an LP methodology. Maybe it’s a hard sell. What matters more than what one should call it is the vibe the band takes such obvious care to present and to maintain over the course of those 28 minutes. The patient drift past the midpoint in “La Palmosa.” The brightness of the fuzz guitar blast in “Sapo Sagapo.” The slow beginning of “Valdeinfierno.” The mini-freakout of “Quejigo” with its uptempo bounce. All of these things help give the respective tracks a sense of personality of their own, and yet all of them tie the material together as well. They unite as much as they distinguish.

Atavismo

After the wash of keyboard and plucked acoustic guitar notes and clarinet and mellotron of “Trompetillas de la Muerte” — which, by the way, is 39 seconds long — “La Palmosa” takes hold with an insistent strum and plays back and forth between fuzz-laden breaks and an immediate build of forward momentum. Keys in the background help tie together transitions, and Atavismo jam their way through a midsection break that’s the hypnotic beginning of a build, except that instead of paying it off in traditional fashion, they leave off to silence and let the start-stop riff at the core of “Quejigo” — no less danceable than its predecessor — keep the spirit moving. The drums are crucial to this as the guitar joins their rhythm and blown-out vocals mark the beginning of the first verse. Like “La Palmosa,” “Quejigo” builds its own tension, but at 3:22, it opens up to pay it off with an uptempo jam and the already-noted bounce en route to the presumed end of side A.

The title-track is also the longest song on Valdeinfierno at 8:26, and in its concept, it’s the most striking inclusion of them. It works in two sections and the first of them is a lull. Gently, it rises to a serene level of volume with a patience over the course of its first two-plus minutes that feels born out of classical music, never mind prog, and when the airy guitar and drums kick in a bit before 2:30, their entry isn’t even so much a “kick in” as a “oh hi do you mind if we do this thing we promise it’ll be awesome ah cool thanks” and with what sounds an awful lot like a xylophone backing — keys? — Moreno unfurls a slow, jammy lead. By the midpoint about two minutes later, the mood is set and Atavismo set to exploring the landscape they’ve drawn, but then at 5:50 a surge of volume signals to the drums, which then begin cycles of tom runs and the guitar moves into a speedy and winding lead that seems to carry a Middle Eastern influence in its scales, but drops out after seven minutes to percussion and room-mic’ed shouts that end. That switch in volume and meter is so resoundingly important to Valdeinfierno. It’s the moment where the band proves that not only are they able to pull off different stylistic turns between their songs, but within them as well. As “Sago Sagapo” comes through with its soft keys in the background, easy lead layer behind acoustic strumming, the peaceful feel of earlier in the title-track returns, but it’s hard not to think maybe Atavismo will jump ship again and start adventuring into different terrain.

They don’t, really, and “Sapo Sagapo” brings up another fuzzy solo before dropping to silence and letting “Etreum al ed Sallitemport” run backwards through the EP’s intro with all the more of a progressive feel. But the lack of predictability remains firm and it’s become one of the strongest assets Atavismo have at their disposal. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether Valdeinfierno is an EP or an album. It only matters to me because when I invariably salivate over what they do next, compulsion will lead me to wonder if it’s their second LP, third EP, second EP, etc. Of far greater importance is that this mini-album is precisely that: a condensed full-album flow executed over a shorter series of tracks. It acts as a showcase of Atavismo‘s growth and experimental sensibilities, but it also inevitably bridges any and all gaps between those experiments as they arise. This band makes some of the most beautiful music I’ve heard in underground psych. It’s time more people started taking notice.

Atavismo on Thee Facebooks

Atavismo on Bandcamp

Adansonia Records website

Adansonia Records on Thee Facebooks

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Quarterly Review: Khemmis, Morag Tong, Holy Mushroom, Naisian, Haunted, Pabst, L.M.I., Fuzz Forward, Onségen Ensemble, The Heavy Eyes

Posted in Reviews on July 18th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-CALIFORNIA-LANDSCAPE-Julian-Rix-1851-1903

I always say the same thing on the Wednesday of the Quarterly Review. Day 3. The halfway point. I say it every time. The fact is, doing these things kind of takes it out of me. All of it. It’s not that I don’t enjoy listening to all these records — well, I don’t enjoy all of them, but I’m talking more about the process — just that it’s a lot to take in and by the time I’m done each day, let alone at the end of the week, I’m fairly exhausted. So every time we hit the halfway point of a Quarterly Review, I feel somewhat compelled to note it. Cresting the hill, as it were. It’s satisfying to get to this point without my head falling off.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Khemmis, Desolation

khemmis desolation

Continuing their proclivity for one-word titles, Denver doom forerunners Khemmis take a decisive turn toward the metallic with their third album for 20 Buck Spin, the six-track/41-minute Desolation. Songs like opener “Bloodletting” and its side B counterpart “The Seer” are still tinged with doom, but the NWOBHM gallop in “Isolation” and “Maw of Time” – as well as the sheer force of the latter – is an unexpected twist. Khemmis showed classic metal elements on 2016’s was-a-very-big-deal Hunted (review here) and 2015’s debut, Absolution (review here), but it’s a question of balance, and as they’ve once again worked with producer Dave Otero, one can only read the shift as a conscious decision. The harder edge suits them – certainly suits the screams in “Maw of Time” and side A finale/album highlight “Flesh to Nothing” – and as Khemmis further refine their sound, they craft its most individualized manifestation to-date. There’s no hearing Desolation and mistaking Khemmis for another band. They’ve come into their own.

Khemmis on Thee Facebooks

20 Buck Spin website

 

Morag Tong, Last Knell of Om

morag tong last knell of om

A rumbling entry into London’s Heavy Generation, the four-piece Morag Tong unfold voluminous ritual on their debut full-length, Last Knell of Om. Largely slow and largely toned, the work of guitarists Alex Clarke and Lewis Crane brings the low end to the forefront along with the bass of James Atha while drummer Adam Asquith pushes the lurch forward on cuts like “New Growth” and “To Soil,” the band seemingly most comfortable when engaged in crawling tempos and weighted pummel. Asquith also adds semi-shouted vocals to the mire, which, surrounded by distortion as they are, only make the proceedings sound even more massive. There’s an ambience to “We Answer” and near-13-minute closer “Ephemera: Stare Through the Deep,” which gives the record a suitably noisy finish, but much of what Morag Tong are going for in sound depends on the effectiveness of their tonality, and they’ve got that part down on their debut. Coupled with the meditative feel in some of this material, that shows marked potential on the band’s part for future growth.

Morag Tong on Thee Facebooks

Morag Tong on Bandcamp

 

Holy Mushroom, Blood and Soul

holy mushroom blood and soul

Working quickly to follow-up their earlier-2018 sophomore long-player, Moon (review here), Spain’s Holy Mushroom present Blood and Soul, an EP comprised of two songs recorded live in the studio. I’m not entirely sure why it’s split up at all, as the two-minute “Introito” – sure enough, a little introduction – feeds so smoothly into the 19-minute “Blood and Soul” itself, but fair enough either way as the trio shift between different instrumentation, incorporating sax, piano and organ among the guitar, bass, drums and vocals, and unfold a longform heavy psychedelic trip that not only builds on what they were doing with Moon but is every bit worthy of being released on its own. I don’t know if it was recorded at the same time as the record or later – both were done at Asturcon Studios – but it’s easy to see why the band would want to highlight “Blood and Moon.” Between the deep-running mix, the easy rhythmic flow into and out from drifting spaciousness, and the turn in the middle third toward more expansive arrangement elements, it’s an engaging motion that makes subtly difficult shifts seem utterly natural along the way. And even if you didn’t hear the latest full-length, Blood and Soul makes for a fitting introduction to who Holy Mushroom are as a band and what they can do.

Holy Mushroom on Thee Facebooks

Clostridium Records website

 

Naisian, Rejoinder

naisian rejoinder

Sludge-infused noise rock serves as the backdrop for lyrical shenanigans on the three-song Rejoinder EP from Sheffield, UK, trio Naisian. Running just 12 minutes, it’s a quick and thickened pummel enacted by the band, who work in shades of post-metal for “90 ft. Stone,” “Mantis Rising” and “Lefole,” most especially in the middle cut, but even there, the focus in on harsh vocals and lumbering sonic heft. It’s now been seven years since the band sort-of issued their debut album, Mammalian, and six since they followed with the Monocle EP, and the time seems to have stripped down their sound to a degree. “Lefole” is the longest track on Rejoinder at 5:18 and it’s still shorter than every other song Naisian have put out to-date. Their crunch lacks nothing for impact, however, and to go with the swing of “Lefole,” everybody seems to contribute to a vocal assault that only adds to the punishing but thoughtful vibe.

Naisian on Thee Facebooks

Naisian on Bandcamp

 

Haunted, Dayburner

haunted dayburner

The effects-laden vocal swirl at the outset of Haunted’s “Mourning Sun” and moments in the Italian act’s longer-form material, “Waterdawn” or “Orphic,” for example, will invariably lead some listeners to point to a Windhand influence, but the character of the band’s second album, Dayburner (on Twin Earth, DHU and Graven Earth all), follows their 2016 self-titled (review here) by holding steady to a developing identity of its own. To be sure, vocalist Christina Chimirri, guitarists Francesco Bauso and Francesco Orlando, bassist Frank Tudisco and drummer Dario Casabona make their way into a deep, murky swamp of modern doom in “Dayburner” (video posted here), but in the crush of their tones amid all that trance-inducing riffing, they cast themselves as an outfit seeking to express individuality within the set parameters of style. Their execution, then, is what it comes down to, and with “Orphic” (12:46) and “Vespertine” (13:19) back to back, there’s plenty of doom on the 66-minute 2LP to roll that out. And they do so in patient and successful form, with marked tonal vibrancy and a sense of controlling the storm they’re creating as they go.

Haunted on Thee Facebooks

Twin Earth Records website

DHU Records webstore

Graven Earth Records webstore

 

Pabst, Chlorine

pabst chlorine

So, the aesthetic is different. Pabst play a blend of noise, post-punk, heavy rock and grunge, but with the ready pop influence — to wit, the outright danceability of “Shits,” reminiscent in its bounce of later Queens of the Stone Age – and persistent melodicism, there’s just a twinge of what Mars Red Sky did for heavy rolling riffs happening on Chlorine, their Crazysane Records debut. It’s in that blend of dense low-end fuzz and brighter vocal melodies, but again, Pabst, hailing from Berlin, are on their own trip. Weird but almost more enjoyable than it seems to want to be, the 12-track/35-minute outing indulges little and offers singalong-ready vibes in “Catching Feelings” and “Waterslide” while “Waiting Loop” chills out before the push of “Accelerate” and the angularity of “Cheapskate” take hold. Chrlorine careens and (blue) ribbons its way to the drive-fast-windows-open stylization of “Summer Never Came” and the finale “Under Water,” a vocal effect on the latter doing nothing to take away from its ultra-catchy hook. It’s not for everyone, but it’s a record someone with just the right kind of open mind can come to love.

Pabst on Thee Facebooks

Crazysane Records webstore

 

L.M.I., IV

lmi iv

If you’ve got a dank basement full of skinny college kids, chances are Lansdale, Pennsylvania’s L.M.I. are ready to tear their faces off. The sludge-thickened riff punkers run abut 11 minutes with their five-song release, L.M.I. IV, and that’s well enough time to get their message across. Actually, by the end of “Neck of Tension” and “Weaning Youth,” roughly four and half minutes in, the statement of intent is pretty clear. L.M.I. present furious but grooving hardcore punk more given to scathe than pummel, and their inclusions on L.M.I. IV bring that to life with due sense of controlled chaos. Centerpiece “Lurking Breath” gives way to “First to Dark” – the longest cut at a sprawling 2:55 – and they save a bit of grunge guitar scorch and lower-register growling for closer “June was a Test,” there isn’t really time in general for any redundancy to take hold. That suits the feeling of assault well, as L.M.I. get in and get out on the quick and once they’re gone, all that’s left to do is clean the blood off the walls.

L.M.I. on Thee Facebooks

L.M.I. on Bandcamp

 

Fuzz Forward, Out of Nowhere

fuzz forward out of nowhere

Released one way or another through Discos Macarras, Odio Sonoro, Spinda Records and Red Sun Records, the eight-song/43-minute debut album from Barcelona’s Fuzz Forward, Out of Nowhere, has earned acclaim from multiple corners for its interpretation of grunge-era melodies through a varied heavy rock filter. Indeed, the vocals of Juan Gil – joined in the band by guitarist Edko Fuzz, bassist Jordi Vaquero and drummer Marc Rockenberg – pull the mind directly to a young Layne Staley, and forces one to realize it’s been a while since that low-in-the-mouth approach was so ubiquitous. It works well for Gil in the laid back “Summertime Somersaults” as well as the swinging, cowbell-infused later cut “Drained,” and as the band seems to foreshadow richer atmospheric exploration on “Thorns in Tongue” and “Torches,” they nonetheless maintain a focus on songwriting that grounds the proceedings and will hopefully continue to serve as their foundation as they move forward. No argument with the plaudits they’ve thus far received. Seems doubtful they’ll be the last.

Fuzz Forward on Thee Facebooks

Fuzz Forward on Bandcamp

 

Onségen Ensemble, Duel

Onsegen ensemble duel

The kind of record you’re doing yourself a favor by hearing – a visionary cast of progressive psychedelia that teems with creative energy and is an inspiration even in the listening. Frankly, the only thing I’m not sure about when it comes to Oulu, Finland, outfit Onségen Enseble’s second album, Duel, is why it isn’t being released through Svart Records. It seems like such a natural fit, with the adventurous woodwinds on opener “Think Neither Good Nor Evil,” the meditative sprawl of the title-track (video posted here), the jazz-jam in the middle of “Dogma MMXVII,” the tribalist percussion anchoring the 12-minute “Three Calls of the Emperor’s Teacher,” which surely would otherwise float away under its own antigravity power, and the free-psych build of closer “Zodiacal Lights of Onségen,” which shimmers in otherworldly fashion and improvised-sounding spark. On Svart or not, Duel is one of the best albums I’ve heard this year, and one the creativity of which puts it in a class of its own, even in the vast reaches of psychedelic rock. Whether it means to or not, it tells a story with sound, and that story should be heard.

Onségen Ensemble on Thee Facebooks

Onsegen Ensemble on Bandcamp

 

The Heavy Eyes, Live in Memphis

the heavy eyes live in memphis

Since so much of The Heavy Eyes’ studio presentation has consistently been about crispness of sound and structured songwriting, it’s kind of a relief to hear them knock into some feedback at the start of “Mannish Boy” at the outset of Live in Memphis (on Kozmik Artifactz). The three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Tripp Shumake, bassist Wally Anderson and drummer Eric Garcia are still tight as hell, of course, and their material – drawn here from the band’s LPs, 2015’s He Dreams of Lions (review here), 2012’s Maera, 2011’s self-titled, as well as sundry shorter offerings – is likewise. They’ve never been an overly dangerous band, nor have they wanted to be, but the stage performance does add a bit of edge to “Iron Giants” from the debut, which is followed by singing “Happy Birthday” to a friend in the crowd. One of the most enjoyable aspects of Live in Memphis is hearing The Heavy Eyes loosen up a bit on stage, and hearing them sound like they’re having as good a time playing as the crowd is watching and hearing them do so. That sense of fun suits them well.

The Heavy Eyes on Thee Facebooks

The Heavy Eyes at Kozmik Artifactz

 

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Atavismo Premiere “La Palmosa”; Announce Valdeinfierno EP Due July 23

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on June 25th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Atavismo

Atavismo will release their new EP, Valdeinfierno, on July 23 via Adansonia Records. With it, the Algeciras, Spain, outfit present six tracks — well, four with an intro and outro — that to each very one, explore new territory of range and scope. From the flowing Iberian folk in “La Palmosa” to the shuffling tension of “Quejigo” to drifting into Afrobeat-inspired rhythms of the title-track to the Mellotron-inclusive fuzz-prog of “Sapo Sagapo,” Atavismo venture into deeply varied ground and feel their way through ideas both rich in tone, all over place and still somehow able to flow together as an execution of a single idea and spirit. If you have an excuse for not digging them, I’d love to hear it.

The label is new, some of the sounds are new, but Atavismo‘s identity still comes through strong on Valdeinfierno — it just so happens that all that exploration is a huge part of it. Check back July 20 for a review and full stream of the EP, but in the meantime, I’m happy to host the unveiling of “La Palmosa, which you’ll find at the bottom of this post. Led into by the intro “Trompetillas de la Muerte” — which appears backwards as the EP’s outro, “Eteum al ed Sallitepmort” — it presents a fuzzy roll and intricacy that only reveals itself more with subsequent listens, whether it’s the percussion deeper in the mix or the vocal harmonies atop. I sincerely hope you enjoy it and stay tuned for more.

Recording info follows here, courtesy of the band via the PR wire:

atavismo valdeinfierno

This EP was recorded in October 2017 and April 2018 in Trafalgar Studios, the place we always use to record all our stuff. Recorded by Curro Ureba.

Only one song (called Sapo Sagapo) was recorded in Tagarnina Studios by Océano Galindo (aka Jose Angel Galindo, the guitarist of Viaje a 800).

The mastering was made by DJM in “Studio Fleisch” (Germany).

The release of the album will be on 23th July, and, exceptionally, this album will be released by Adansonia records (Germany).

Tracklisting:
1. Trompetillas de la Muerte
2. La Palmosa
3. Quejigo
4. Valdeinfierno
5. Sapo Sagapo
6. Etreum al ed Sallitepmort

Atavismo live:
JUL 21 Louie Louie, Estepona, Andalusia, Spain
AUG 10 SonicBlast Moledo, Portugal

ATAVISMO are:
Poti: Guitar and vocals
Sandra: Drums and vocals
Mateo: Bass and vocals
Koe: Keyboard, Synth & vocals

https://www.facebook.com/Atavismo-233096556878903/
https://atavismo.bandcamp.com/
https://www.adansoniarecords.de/
https://www.facebook.com/adansoniarecords/

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VOR Premiere Video for “Cudgel”; Depravador out May 19

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 25th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

vor

Framed by images of roaches, needles, faceless masks and other visually striking and abrasive imagery, the new video from Spanish noise-slinging sludge duo VOR tells a good portion of the tale. On May 19, the Madrid-based outfit will issue Depravador through a host of involved labels, including Third I Rex, Noizeland Records, Noorirax Producciones, Odio Sonoro, Sacramento Records, Base Record Production and Fuzz T-Shirts, the latter two of which I’ll confess I’m not even sure if they are record labels, but it’s yet more companies standing behind the band’s work and it goes to prove the overarching point that this is material and this is a band that a lot of people really believe in and are willing to support.

The bass/drum filth-revelry of thevor depravador track “Cudgel,” which is the single for which the new video has been put together, justifies that, I think. It’s a quick blast of ’90s-style sludge intensity, reminiscent maybe of Buzzov*en or Eyehategod in some of their especially biting moments, but the rawness they conjure as only being a two-piece becomes part of the aesthetic in a fascinating way, feeding into the overarching rawness of their approach and making the whole affair even meaner than it started out. I haven’t heard the full record yet — so many cooks in the kitchen on a release, sometimes these things are hard to come by — but once again, it’s easy to understand why people would believe in what VOR are up to stylistically, taking the classic tenets of mud-in-your-eye sludge and bringing something of their own to it. One way or another, it’s noisy as all hell.

My go-to word for this kind of sludge always seems to be “nasty,” and the crust that outlines “Cudgel” much the same way those needles, roaches, etc. frame the video, certainly meets that standard. Depravador, one more time, lands May 19, and it’s with the permission of Third I Rex that I have the pleasure of hosting the premiere of the clip that you’ll find below, with more background beneath, courtesy of the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

VOR, “Cudgel” official video premiere

The Spanish noisemongers VOR bring to the table one of the most corrosive releases of the year. This bass and drum duo is no joke! Coming from projects such as Lazharus, Warchetype, Moho, Cuzo, The Eyes Y and more levels of filth, these guys have got something you should really take a listen to.

Their new album “Depravador” comes after another killer release, the band’s debut album “Tu Clave Es Jonàs”, pressed early in 2017 by another bunch of labels, including some of those collaborating for this new LP. Seven tracks of trippy, abrasive, odd, heavy sludge which, funneled through a punk attitude, is able to take off your face like thick tar on naked skin.

An absolute must listen to for all of the uncompromised sludge supporters, fuzzy doom sounds lovers, punk-fueled hatred preachers, and all of those people out there who wanna listen to something new after tons of boring late releases! “Depravador” will be out on May 19th!

Recorded at La Cortina Roja in 2017.
Mastered at Kadifornia Mastering in 2018.
Front cover art by Calabaza Cosmica.
Photo by Sergio Albert Aviles.

VOR is:
Iván: bass, noise & shrieks
Edu: drums & noise
Anxela (Bala): guest vocals in “Dark Fraga”

VOR on Thee Facebooks

VOR on Bandcamp

VOR on Tumblr

Third I Rex on Thee Facebooks

Third I Rex on Bandcamp

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