Quarterly Review: Sunn O))), Swallow the Sun, Beesus, Giöbia, Decasia, Sonic Mass, Wolvserpent, Delouners, Dead East Garden, Pearl Handled Revolver

Posted in Reviews on March 30th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

the obelisk quarterly review spring 2016

The Wednesday of a Quarterly Review is always special to me. In the six, maybe seven, times I’ve done this now, Wednesday has always been the marker of turning to the second half of the week. Hump Day in a bizarre context. That said, I feel good about how it’s gone so far and I feel very good about the stuff that’s being written about in more than just that getting-it-out-of-the-way spirit. Still, we start today with something that should’ve been reviewed months ago, and I’ll admit to being glad to have such a formidable weight off my chest.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Sunn O))), Kannon

sunn kannon

Sunn O))) are without question among the most integral bands of their generation. I don’t feel like it’s going even remotely out on a limb to say that. With the three-song full-length, Kannon (on Southern Lord), they go back to exploring the waveforms and ritualistic atmospheres that helped their influence spread in the first place, after several years of collaborating with others like Scott Walker and Ulver. Kannon is the first Sunn O)))-proper LP since 2009’s orchestral Monoliths and Dimensions (review here), and while I understand any and everything I might have to say about it is barely a drop in the bucket compared to the from-all-sides laudits founding guitarists Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson have received, its three parts nonetheless demonstrate the fact that with Sunn O))), there is never any backward looking, and that even as they strip away elements that made Monoliths and Dimensions as expansive as it was in favor of the claustrophobic rumble and chants of “Kannon 3,” they move relentlessly forward. They remain necessary.

Sunn O))) on Thee Facebooks

Southern Lord Recordings

 

Swallow the Sun, Songs from the North I, II & III

swallow the sun songs from the north i ii iii

Hey, I like Swallow the Sun. I’ve dug the Finnish outfit since their debut, The Morning Never Came, but I gotta say, maybe a triple album, which Songs from the North I, II and III is, is a bit much? The concept is awesome – one record of light/dark, one record of light, one record of dark – but in practice it’s about a 160 minutes long and a considerable investment to ask of their audience. When it comes to repeat listens, I can’t help but continually go to Songs from the North III, the most extreme installment, which still has plenty of spacious guitar melodies to go with its death-doom emotional and tonal crush, and while I’m not sure that Swallow the Sun would’ve been doing themselves any favors if they spaced out three separate releases rather than bundling them together as they have, it’ll be years before a release of this scope can be properly digested, if it can at all, and for a band whose work is as complex and often lush as Swallow the Sun’s, one wants to absorb it in a way that such a massive offering doesn’t allow.

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Century Media

 

Beesus, The Rise of Beesus

beesus the rise of beesus

Italy’s heavy rock boom continues with the debut album from Roman riffers Beesus. The four-piece nod at desert grunge with “6 Ft. Under Box” and roll out thick, loosely-psychedelic vibes on the opening title-track, but The Rise of Beesus primarily tells its story in its plays of density and spaciousness – see “Waltzer” and the later “Sonic Doom/Stoner Youth” – and one is reminded a bit of Snail circa Blood in that, but a sense of variety brings moments like the quiet opening stretch of “Kusa” and the bass-led thrust of “Mata la Verguenza,” making The Rise of Beesus not as easy to predict as it might first appear. When it does indulge its heft, as on “Beesus in Dope,” it satisfies, but while consistent, it is by no means unipolar. It seems to set Beesus up for future expansion on any number of lines, but as their first outing, it also has a noteworthy sense of itself, carving out an identity from diversity of songcraft and an abidingly chaotic vibe.

Beesus on Thee Facebooks

Beesus on Bandcamp

 

Giöbia, Magnifier

giobia magnifier

Fall 2015’s Magnifier (on Sulatron Records) is the fourth LP from Italian psych/space rockers Giöbia, who launch with the ominous cosmic thrust of “This World was Being Watched Closely” and make their grandest statement on side B with the 15-minute lysergic noise excursion of “Sun Spectre.” There and elsewhere in “The Pond,” “The Stain” and the closing “The Magnifier,” Giöbia pursue shroomy sonic enlightenment through soaking reverb and wah, Moog, synth, bouzouki and so on – a somewhat kitchen sink approach resulting in a joyous front-to-back wash of spirited energy and engaging depth. The follow-up to 2013’s Introducing Night Sound (review here), Magnifier finds synth-laden prog swing in “Lentamenta la Luce Svanirà” and pushes air with the low end of its finale title-cut, a right-on dripper that’s round enough to make the world seem square by comparison. The place Giöbia inhabit between psychedelia and space rock is fast becoming a planet all their own, and for ambassadorship of their sound, Magnifier thrills.

Giöbia on Thee Facebooks

Sulatron Records

 

Decasia, Decasia

decasia decasia title=

Recorded by the band in 2014 and issued in 2015 as their debut EP, Decasia’s Decasia flows more like a long-player, with five cuts that unfold from the tanpura and didgeridoo immersion of opener “Halo,” but I won’t argue. While rawer than what one might commonly expect out of European heavy psychedelia, the French trio nonetheless cull aspects of that sound into their own, so that centerpiece “Blue Love” is right at home with its Hendrixian guitar swing, and closer “Dive” feels within rights to demonstrate a touch of Colour Haze in its initial rhythm, though on the whole Decasia are less laid back and more grunge-informed, resulting in an intriguing blend that, from the burst at the open of “Sherpa” through the crashing finish of “Dive,” shows them as a group able to play to either side at will. They’ve already followed up with the jam “Moodoo Majja,” but I wouldn’t speculate which side will win out as they continue to develop, if indeed any single one does.

Decasia on Thee Facebooks

Decasia on Bandcamp

 

Sonic Mass, You People Never Learn

sonic mass you people never learn

The second long-player from London sludgers Sonic Mass, You People Never Learn… would seem immediately to be positioning itself as punishment. Fair enough – there’s certainly some abrasive aspect to its overriding rawness and liberal feedback – but the huge groove that pays off the build in the second half of “Butcher of Brogdael” is more righteous inclusion than it is masochistic, and even faster, shorter cuts like the blown-out punk of “Biker Satania” or “Toga”’s unhinged dual-guitar thrust feels more about a raucous vibe than putting someone off. In the title-track, they move from a wash of distortion into some caustic feedback by the end, but by then the context of You People Never Learn… is such that the nodding push of eight-minute closer “Quadranoid” is more a celebration than a beating, even if it does round out with two minutes of amp crackle, effects and feedback. If it was coming from a stage, you’d raise a pint to it.

Sonic Mass on Thee Facebooks

Sonic Mass on Bandcamp

 

Wolvserpent, Aporia:Kala:Ananta

wolvserpent aporia kala ananta

Longform material is nothing new for Boise, Idaho-based duo Wolvserpent. Both of their two full-lengths to-date, 2010’s Blood Seed and 2013’s Perigaea Antahkarana, have found the ritual drone-doomers working in extended contexts. However, the newly-issued Aporia:Kala:Ananta EP (on Relapse) pushes that line even further. It is a single-song work running 40 minutes of spacious, sometimes grueling, thrillingly challenging heft, marked by a cinematic sense of drama in its use of violin, blackened extremity and striking depth. Drummer/violinist Brittany McConnell and guitarist/vocalist Blake Green aren’t so much taking any huge stylistic leaps from what they’ve done before, but the scope of “Aporia:Kala:Ananta,” as well as the overarching flow of the piece, its patient execution, and the masterful hand with which they guide it, cannot be called anything but progression. The only question I have is why they’re not calling it an album. Considering both its runtime and its breadth, to consider it anything less feels like selling it short.

Wolvserpent on Thee Facebooks

Relapse Records

 

Delouners, Family

delouners family

Swapping back and forth between Spanish and English lyrics adds variety to Family, the 13-song/45-minute debut long-player from Uruguayan foursome Delouners, but they weren’t short on it anyway. Spacious, echoing guitars and a languid psychedelia-gone-heavy-blues carry across laid back blowout rolls like “Low” and the more uptempo “Secreto,” and all the more in the side A-ending “Mistery Caravan,” the lazy, hazy, take-it-way-down groove feels derived from an All Them Witches influence. There are more garage rock moments, as on the title-track, the earlier “Los Dormidos,” “Alain Delon” and closer “Mirtha Legrand,” and the shoegazing tropicality of “Sea/Side” furthers an individualized sensibility overall, but that naturalist spirit never departs completely. So be it. Delouners drench this central inspiration in their own sonic persona, and so come off influenced rather than derivative, setting themselves up to branch out their progression as they see fit on whatever they might do next.

Delouners on Thee Facebooks

Delouners on Bandcamp

 

Dead East Garden, Dead East Garden

dead east garden dead east garden

There are five songs on the self-titled debut EP from Cleveland, Ohio’s Dead East Garden and three of them could be said to have something to do with cars – “Starting Line,” “El Camino Rock” and “Straight Burning Road.” That’s not a judgment, just a statement of fact. From the post-Pepper Keenan chug of opener “The Lurker,” one kind of knows what’s coming from the workingman’s heavy rockers, but “Mother’s Disease” fleshes out a less dudely aggro spirit with a more patient initial roll and satisfying lead work from guitarist Ryan Scheel. The beer-soaked vibes resume as “Straight Burning Road” comes on to close, vocalist Pat Homolish layering spoken and belted-out hooks as bassist John Roach (since out of the band) and drummer R.J. Drenski hold down one more straightforward groove, and Dead East Garden reinforce the plainspoken intent on display across the short release, as light on pretense as it is heavy on testosterone.

Dead East Garden on Thee Facebooks

Dead East Garden website

 

Pearl Handled Revolver, If the Devil Cast His Net

pearl handled revolver if the devil cast his net

As with their 2013 sophomore outing, This Mountain Waits (review here), the third album from UK heavy blues/classic rockers Pearl Handled Revolver, titled If the Devil Cast His Net, uses synth, Mellotron, electric piano and organ to explore a wide variety of moods, from the soft-guitar blues of “Someone Like You” to the rambling “Absinthe in Adelaide.” All throughout, the band reaffirm their mastery of these styles as they go, be it the boogie shuffle of “Loverman” or the side A closing title-track, which sets forth one of the record’s most engaging bass grooves under gravelly verse before moving into an extended instrumental jam, no less poised than anything preceding or following. That plotted feel is at the core of Pearl Handled Revolver’s approach – nothing is here by accident – and it makes their songcraft all the more inarguable, taking in a post-The Doors bounce on closer “Into the Blue” as they mirror the end of the album’s first half for another striking finish.

Pearl Handled Revolver on Thee Facebooks

Pearl Handled Revolver website

 

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Swallow the Sun Post Video for “Rooms and Shadows”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 16th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

swallow the sun

Finnish death-doomers Swallow the Sun issued their new triple-album, Songs from the North I, II and III, this past Friday on Century Media. Counting the new clip below for “Rooms and Shadows,” which comes from the first of the offering’s three component parts, I’ve now posted four videos from the release. This one, as well as lyric videos for “Heartstrings Shattering” (posted here), “Pray for the Winds to Come” (posted here) and “Abandoned by the Light” (posted here).

Each new clip has come with a reminder of the six-piece’s upcoming European tour, which starts Nov. 26, and each has gotten roughly zero response. Like, none. I know death-doom is primarily an underground form even compared to some of what’s posted about on here, but I mean like not even a thud at the landing. Actually, after the first time, I thought about not even putting up the second clip because it’s not like the band — who I think are much bigger in Europe than the US — need my press and with such a definitive lack of interest, I might as well skip it. But no, I went ahead and put up the second one. Same (lack of) reaction. And by then it was just funny.

Having a pretty strong sense that the third clip would be met with the same apathy, I eagerly anticipated its release. Aside from liking the band — which I do — I wanted to see how the post would do. A little better, I guess, but still pretty meh in the grander scheme. So now the record is out and they have a new not-lyric video for “Rooms and Shadows,” and well, I suppose it seemed like it was time to bring anyone whose eyes might happen to catch this post in on the thing. I do dig this band, and I will at some point be posting a review of Songs from the North, but yeah, I’m also interested to find out if anybody who reads this pays any mind to start with.

We’ll see:

Swallow the Sun, “Rooms and Shadows” official video

SWALLOW THE SUN launch video for “Rooms and Shadows”; New triple album “Songs from the North I, II & III” out now!

Melancholy death-doom masters SWALLOW THE SUN have released their eagerly awaited new triple full-length album, Songs from the North I, II & III, today!

The band also launched a brand-new video for the song “Rooms and Shadows”, taken from Songs from the North pt. I. The video was directed and produced by ex- SENTENCED and THE MAN-EATING TREE drummer Vesa Ranta. You can watch it now at: https://youtu.be/0_veG-Hv4I8

All physical formats of “Songs from the North I, II & III” as well as shirt bundles can be purchased here:
http://smarturl.it/sftnCMDISTRO

Or get the digital version at one of the following outlets:
http://smarturl.it/sftnITUNES
http://smarturl.it/sftnAMAZON

In continued support of “Songs from the North I, II & III”, SWALLOW THE SUN will perform their signature brand of gloom, beauty, and despair live throughout Europe on headlining dates beginning later this month. They will be accompanied by fellow countrymen Wolfheart. Complete list of dates below.

SWALLOW THE SUN live:
11.26. Berlin, K17, DE
11.27. Hamburg, Headcrash, DE
11.28. Rotterdam, Baroeg, NL
11.29. Apeldoorn, TBC, NL
11.30. Paris, Glazart, FR
12.4. Valencia, Rock City, ES
12.5. Barcelona, Apolo 2, ES
12.6. Madrid, Caracol, ES
12.8. Montpellier, Secret Place, FR
12.9. Pratteln, Z7, CH
12.10. Brescia, Circolo Colony, IT
12.11. Ljbubljana, Orto Bar, SL
12.12. Budapest, Dürer Kert, HU
12.13. Kosice, Colosseum Club, SK
12.14. Krakau, Club Rotunda, PL
12.15. Vienna, Viper Room, AT
12.16. Munchen, Backstage, DE
12.17. Weinheim, Café Zentralbar, DE
12.18. Vosselaar, Biebob, BE
12.19. Bochum, Matrix, DE

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

Swallow the Sun’s website

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Swallow the Sun on Twitter

Century Media

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Swallow the Sun Post “Abandoned by the Light” Lyric Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 9th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

 swallow the sun Photo-by-Jussi-Ratilainen-Photography

Finland’s Swallow the Sun issue their new three-part album, Songs from the North I, II and III, this week via Century Media, and as anticipated, they have a corresponding final installment in their series of lyric videos preceding the record’s arrival. First came “Heartstrings Shattering” (posted here), which basked in the band’s well-honed, emotionally potent death-doom style. Then there was the mostly-acoustic “Pray for the Winds to Come” (review here), which showcased the melodic side of their sound.

The stated concept for the album being to show where the band is sonically and parse the dual light/dark aspects of that sound, then the only thing left to show off is the harsh, extreme deathliness in what they do, and “Abandoned by the Light” certainly hits that mark. It’s worth pointing out that neither it nor “Pray for the Winds to Come” is completely separate from the other — that is, there’s a bit of synth on “Abandoned by the Light” that adds melody even to its grueling nine-minute crawl, and likewise, the acoustic track had its underlying sense of foreboding.

Might seem like a long way to go for Swallow the Sun to prove their versatility, but if you don’t know them as a band willing to go a long way, you’re missing the point.

Euro tour starts Nov. 26. Video and dates follow. Enjoy:

Swallow the Sun, “Abandoned by the Light” lyric video

SWALLOW THE SUN just premiered their new lyric video for the track “Abandoned By The Light.”

The single “Abandoned By The Light” comes from the third album which is said to be the most extreme offering in the triple album series, a complete ride into SWALLOW THE SUN’s most horrific abyss of finely-crafted, conscience-crushing funeral doom.

“Abandoned by the Light is a prime example of how heavy the third album is. It is – like the rest of the album – long, menacing and relentless, with occasional glimmer of something that could be mistaken for hope. Enjoy!” states Aleksi Munter of SWALLOW THE SUN.

Songs from the North I, II & III from SWALLOW THE SUN will be released worldwide on November 13, 2015 and is available for pre-order now at: http://smarturl.it/sftnCMDISTRO

In continued support of the forthcoming release, SWALLOW THE SUN will perform their signature brand of gloom, beauty, and despair live throughout Europe on headlining dates beginning later this month. They will be accompanied by fellow countrymen Wolfheart. Complete list of dates below.

SWALLOW THE SUN live:
11.26. Berlin, K17, DE
11.27. Hamburg, Headcrash, DE
11.28. Rotterdam, Baroeg, NL
11.29. Apeldoorn, TBC, NL
11.30. Paris, Glazart, FR
12.2. Lissabon, RCA Club, PT
12.3 Porto, Hard Club, PT
12.4. Valencia, Rock City, ES
12.5. Barcelona, Apolo 2, ES
12.6. Madrid, Caracol, ES
12.8. Montpellier, Secret Place, FR
12.9. Pratteln, Z7, CH
12.10. Brescia, Circolo Colony, IT
12.11. Ljbubljana, Orto Bar, SL
12.12. Budapest, Dürer Kert, HU
12.13. Kosice, Colosseum Club, SK
12.14. Krakau, Club Rotunda, PL
12.15. Vienna, Viper Room, AT
12.16. Munchen, Backstage, DE
12.17. Weinheim, Café Centraal, DE
12.18. Vosselaar, Biebob, BE
12.19. Bochum, Matrix, DE

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

Swallow the Sun website

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Swallow the Sun on Twitter

Century Media website

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Swallow the Sun Post Lyric Video for “Pray for the Winds to Come”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 19th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

swallow the sun (Photo by Jussi Ratilainen Photography)

Hey, wait a minute! I think I see what’s happening here. I’m onto you savvy marketing types. About two weeks ago, Finnish death-doomers Swallow the Sun unveiled a lyric video for the track “Heartstrings Shattering” (posted here) that came from the first chapter of their upcoming three-part full-plus-length album, Songs from the North I, II and III, which is due out Nov. 13, 2015, via Century Media. Now here we are, edged just a little bit closer to the release date, and there’s a lyric video for “Pray for the Winds to Come,” which is taken from the second part of the same record!

See where I’m going with this? I’m willing to wager that if all goes according to plan, about a week and a half or two weeks from now we’ll see another Swallow the Sun lyric video coming down the PR wire, this one for a cut from the third, final and most extreme portion of the Songs from the North triptych. I’ve got no confirmation of that, so it’s entirely possible Century Media will throw a curveball, but it seems fair to think of “Pray for the Winds to Come” as part of a whole series rather than a standalone entity unto itself, which of course is true of the album from whence it comes, the second part being where the band indulges more of their atmospheric side, acoustics and lush arrangements common throughout its tracks, as opposed to the third part, which is entirely deathlier, or the first, which draws from both sides in Swallow the Sun‘s heretofore underappreciated standard modus.

They announced a European tour with the last video, but in case you don’t feel like clicking back, those dates follow here as well with more info on Songs from the North I, II and III. Enjoy:

Swallow the Sun, “Pray for the Winds to Come” lyric video

SWALLOW THE SUN posts new lyric video for “Pray for the Winds to Come”

SWALLOW THE SUN just posted a brand new lyric video for their song “Pray for the Winds to Come”, taken from the second part of their upcoming triple album!

Songs from the North I, II & III will be released on November 13, 2015 via Century Media Records.

Incorporating dark menace and gradations of death, black and funeral doom, each of the three albums of Songs from the North I, II & III embodies the band’s unofficial band motto, “Gloom, Beauty & Despair”

Songs from the North I continues in the vein of the albums before it – first-rate death-doom in the typical style of SWALLOW THE SUN.

Songs from the North II is a beautiful, acoustic foray representing the group’s ability to unplug and revel in the darkness.

Songs from the North III is the most extreme album, a complete ride into SWALLOW THE SUN’s most horrific abyss of finely-crafted, conscience-crushing funeral doom.

In support of the new album(s), SWALLOW THE SUN will embark on a European headline tour for November/December 2015 accompanied by fellow countrymen Wolfheart and further support bands that will be announced soon. See below for the complete list of dates!

SWALLOW THE SUN live:
11.26. Berlin, K17, DE
11.27. Hamburg, Headcrash, DE
11.28. Rotterdam, Baroeg, NL
11.29. Apeldoorn, TBC, NL
11.30. Paris, Glazart, FR
12.4. Valencia, Rock City, ES
12.5. Barcelona, Apolo 2, ES
12.6. Madrid, Caracol, ES
12.8. Montpellier, Secret Place, FR
12.9. Pratteln, Z7, CH
12.10. Brescia, Circolo Colony, IT
12.11. Ljbubljana, Orto Bar, SL
12.12. Budapest, Dürer Kert, HU
12.13. Kosice, Colosseum Club, SK
12.14. Krakau, Club Rotunda, PL
12.15. Vienna, Viper Room, AT
12.16. Munchen, Backstage, DE
12.17. Weinheim, Café Zentralbar, DE
12.18. Vosselaar, Biebob, BE
12.19. Bochum, Matrix, DE

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

Swallow the Sun website

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Swallow the Sun on Twitter

Century Media website

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Swallow the Sun Post “Heartstrings Shattering” Lyric Video; Euro Tour Announced

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 7th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

swallow the sun (Photo by Jussi Ratialainen Photography)

My immediate question on seeing that Swallow the Sun had a new lyric video for the track “Heartstrings Shattering” from their upcoming Songs from the North I, II and III full-length was to which of those three parts the cut belonged. The Finnish death-doom six-piece will release the album on Nov. 13 through Century Media, and the triple-disc outing follows the format of playing toward their particular style both in its whole and in the parts that make it up, the first chapter being their typical approach, the second an acoustic outing and the third a more extreme, presumably death metal, vision.

I’ve noted a couple times already the ambitiousness of the project and that I’m looking forward to hearing how it’s all turned out. “Heartstrings Shattering” comes from the first of the three parts, and sure enough, it blends melancholic, melodic passages — in this case using a guest vocalist and all — with the band’s post-Peaceville take on doom, shades of classic My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost cast over more modern chug and fluid transitions from one modus to another. Ultimately, it’s as lush as it is pummeling, and that’s no doubt why it was chosen to be the first audio to be made public from the work as a whole. I don’t imagine it was easy to pick a track with three records’ worth of material on-hand.

Swallow the Sun have also announced a European tour for next month, and you can find those dates under the lyric video below, courtesy of the PR wire:

Swallow the Sun, “Heartstrings Shattering” lyric video

SWALLOW THE SUN launch lyric video for “Heartstrings Shattering”

SWALLOW THE SUN have just launched a lyric video for their brand new song “Heartstrings Shattering”, taken from the first part of their upcoming triple album!

Songs from the North I, II & III will be released on November 13, 2015 via Century Media Records!

Incorporating dark menace and gradations of death, black and funeral doom, each of the three albums of “Songs from the North I, II & III” embodies the band’s unofficial band motto, “Gloom, Beauty & Despair”:

Songs from the North I continues in the vein of the albums before it – first-rate death-doom in the typical style of SWALLOW THE SUN.

Songs from the North II is a beautiful, acoustic foray representing the group’s ability to unplug and revel in the darkness.

Songs from the North III is the most extreme album, a complete ride into SWALLOW THE SUN’s most horrific abyss of finely-crafted, conscience-crushing funeral doom.

In addition to the launch of the new lyric video, SWALLOW THE SUN have also announced a European headlining tour dates for November/December 2015! They will be accompanied by fellow countrymen Wolfheart and further support bands that will be announced soon. See below for the exact dates!

SWALLOW THE SUN live:
11.26. Berlin, K17, DE
11.27. Hamburg, Headcrash, DE
11.28. Rotterdam, Baroeg, NL
11.29. Apeldoorn, TBC, NL
11.30. Paris, Glazart, FR
12.4. Valencia, Rock City, ES
12.5. Barcelona, Apolo 2, ES
12.6. Madrid, Caracol, ES
12.8. Montpellier, Secret Place, FR
12.9. Pratteln, Z7, CH
12.10. Brescia, Circolo Colony, IT
12.11. Ljbubljana, Orto Bar, SL
12.12. Budapest, Dürer Kert, HU
12.13. Kosice, Colosseum Club, SK
12.14. Krakau, Club Rotunda, PL
12.15. Vienna, Viper Room, AT
12.16. Munchen, Backstage, DE
12.17. Weinheim, Café Zentralbar, DE
12.18. Vosselaar, Biebob, BE
12.19. Bochum, Matrix, DE

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

Swallow the Sun website

Swallow the Sun on Thee Facebooks

Swallow the Sun on Twitter

Swallow the Sun at Century Media

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Swallow the Sun Reveal Album Details for Songs from the North I, II and III

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 18th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

swallow the sun (photo by Jussi Ratilainen Photography)

Finnish death-doomers Swallow the Sun have posted more details concerning their previously-announced triple album, Songs from the North I, II & III. The rather massive undertaking will be released Nov. 13 via Century Media as the follow-up to the band’s 2012 fifth LP, Emerald Forest and the Blackbird (track stream here), and along with the artwork and tracklistings for each of the three parts, the intent of each individual chapter has been made public. The first will be sort of the standard Swallow the Sun blend of extreme doom and melodic melancholy, the second acoustic and the third heavier, so that the band presents a different personality on each outings that then feed off each other to form the whole.

I’m interested to hear how it all turns out, but it looks like we have a while to go yet before we get there. Here’s the total four album covers and the latest details off the PR wire:

SWALLOW THE SUN reveal details for new triple album ‘Songs from the North I, II & III’

Melancholy death-doom masters SWALLOW THE SUN bring us a bold, adventurous and characteristically dark triple full-length album entitled Songs from the North I, II & III, which will be released on November 13, 2015 via Century Media Records!

Incorporating dark menace and gradations of death, black and funeral doom, each of the three albums of Songs from the North I, II & III embodies the band’s unofficial band motto, “Gloom, Beauty & Despair”:

Songs from the North I continues in the vein of the albums before it – first-rate death-doom in the typical style of SWALLOW THE SUN.

Track-listing:
1. With You Cam e the Whole of the World’s Tears
2. 10 Silver Bullets
3. Rooms and Shadows
4. Heartstrings Shattering
5. Silhouettes
6. The Memory of Light
7. Lost & Catatonic
8. From Happiness to Dust
Total playing time: 59:20

Songs from the North II is a beautiful, acoustic foray representing the group’s ability to unplug and revel in the darkness.

Track-listing:
1. The Womb of Winter
2. The Heart of a Cold White Land
3. Away
4. Pray for the Winds to Come
5. Songs from the North
6. 66°50´N,28°40´E
7. Autumn Fire
8. Before the Summer Dies
Total playing time: 42:33

Songs from the North III is the most extreme album, a complete ride into SWALLOW THE SUN’s most horrific abyss of finely-crafted, conscience-crushing funeral doom.

Track-listing:
1. The Gathering of Black Moths
2. 7 Hours Late
3. Empires of Loneliness
4. Abandoned by the Light
5. The Clouds Prepare for Battle
Total playing time: 51:57

Songs from the North I, II & III will be available as Special Edition 3CD Box containing 3 Digipaks and a booklet, Ltd. Deluxe Edition 5LP+3CD Box with each album in a gatefold sleeve & as digital album.

Main songwriter and guitarist Juha Raivio comments on the triple album concept: “Making a triple album in this godforsaken digital and modern day and age…Many will say it’s madness. I say it is to bring worth, heart and respect back into the music and to the album format where it belongs. This should never turn into a shallow fast food industry where music is only downloaded one song at a time. These albums hold life, death, gloom, beauty and despair in their deepest levels and forms. The three chapters are different but connected, one long journey through these songs written up here in the North. Music is holy, albums are holy. See you on the other side friends.”

Stay tuned for more news about Songs from the North I, II & III coming soon!

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

SWALLOW THE SUN online:
http://www.swallowthesun.net
https://www.facebook.com/swallowthesun
https://twitter.com/swallowthesunfi

Swallow the Sun, “Psychopath’s Lair” Live at 70,000 Tons of Metal Cruise 2014

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Swallow the Sun to Release Triple-Album Songs from the North I, II & III

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 21st, 2015 by JJ Koczan

I’ve posted about Finnish death-doomers Swallow the Sun a few times over the years, and apart from a track stream I did for their last record, 2012’s Emerald Forest and Black Bird (posted here), the response is usually pretty quiet. Well, I’m gonna keep posting about them because I think they’re a cool fucking band and they’re prone to doing wacky stuff like putting out a triple-album, which they’ll do in Nov. in the form of Songs from the North I, II and III. Kudos to Century Media for what I can only assume was a toss-the-hands-up-and-say-what-the-hell decision to get behind such a massive undertaking, and to the band itself, because if you’re gonna go low and slow, you might as well also go completely overwhelming.

The PR wire has release details:

swallow the sun

SWALLOW THE SUN finishes massive recording session; new triple album to be released in November

Melancholy death-doom metal masters SWALLOW THE SUN have completed their massive recording session! The Finnish sextet’s last album, Emerald Forest And The Blackbird, was released in winter 2012; come November 2015, the long wait between recordings will finally be over.

The new SWALLOW THE SUN release will be a triple album entitled Songs From The North I, II & III.

Main songwriter and guitarist Juha Raivio comments on the triple album concept: “Making a triple album in this godforsaken digital and modern day and age…Many will say it’s madness. I say it is to bring worth, heart and respect back into the music and to the album format where it belongs. This should never turn into a shallow fast food industry where music is only downloaded one song at a time.

These albums hold life, death, gloom, beauty and despair in their deepest levels and forms. The three chapters are different but connected, one long journey through these songs written up here in the North.

Music is holy, albums are holy. See you on the other side friends.”

Stay tuned for more news about Songs From The North I, II & III coming soon!

SWALLOW THE SUN is:
Juha Raivio – guitar
Markus Jämsen – guitar
Mikko Kotamäki – vocals
Matti Honkonen -bass
Aleksi Munter – keys
Juuso Raatikainen – drums

SWALLOW THE SUN online:
http://www.swallowthesun.net
https://www.facebook.com/swallowthesun
https://twitter.com/swallowthesunfi

Swallow the Sun, Emerald Forest and the Blackbird (2012)

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Swallow the Sun to Perform and Stream The Morning Never Came Live this Week

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 24th, 2013 by JJ Koczan

Been a quick decade since Finnish doomers Swallow the Sun released their debut full-length, The Morning Never Came. I recall the album came out in the States on the now-defunct Olympic Records, which at the time was an imprint of Century Media, and it was a killer atmospherically from the word go. Probably you could debate back and forth how influential the band has been since, and that might be fun, but I know that album certainly left an impression on me when I heard it. Enough so that I haven’t let one of Swallow the Sun‘s albums pass unbought since, even as they’ve moved on from their doomly beginnings to a more melancholic brand of dark, progressive metal.

Apparently I’m not the only one to have been caught in The Morning Never Came‘s wake, since Swallow the Sun will perform the album from to back as part of a 10th anniversary celebration this Thursday at Klubi in Tampere, streaming the whole thing live as well. If that sounds like your glass of lonkero, check out the details below, courtesy of the PR wire:

SWALLOW THE SUN TO LIVESTREAM SEPTEMBER 26 SHOW IN FINLAND

DOOM LEGENDS TO PERFORM DEBUT ALBUM THE MORNING NEVER CAME IN FULL

Iconic Finnish doom merchants Swallow the Sun are embarking on a fall tour to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their landmark debut album The Morning Never Came.

The band’s show, scheduled for Thursday, September 26 in Tampere in their native Finland, will be livestreamed globally (10PM UTC/6PM EDT).

Swallow the Sun will perform the album in full, adding other tracks to the encore.

Stream the event here and feel like you are front and center without ever having to leave the house!

Swallow the Sun tour dates
26.9.2013 Klubi, Tampere
27.9.2013 On the Rocks, Helsinki
28.9.2013 Lutakko, Jyväskylä

w/ Antimatter & The Foreshadowing
25.10.2013 Kiff, Aarau, Switzerland
26.10.2013 Rock & Roll Arena, Milan, Italy
27.10.2013 Backstage, Munich, Germany
28.10.2013 Nova Chmelnice, Prague, Czech Republic
29.10.2013 Steinbruch Theater, Darmstadt, Germany
30.10.2013 Grünspan, Darmstadt, Germany
31.10.2013 Helvete, Oberhausen, Germany
1.11.2013 Nouveau Casino, Paris, France
2.11.2013 Brainstorm Festival, Apeldoorn, Netherlands
3.11.2013 Biebob, Vosselaar, Belgium
4.11.2013 Underworld, London, UK

http://www.livemusicstage.com/events/132/swallow-the-sun/6
http://www.swallowthesun.net

Swallow the Sun, The Morning Never Came (2003)

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