Solstice Add New Vocalist; Demo Tracks Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on December 4th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

NWOBHM-tinged UK doomers Solstice have announced the addition of vocalist Hel Thorne to their lineup. The band have had a couple singles out over the last few years to lead up to a new album release and I’m not sure how this shift will affect that, but there are two demo tracks that were apparently Thorne‘s audition tape streaming now on Bandcamp to give people a sense of her style, and an announcement to make it official.

Kind of sucks that a band who’ve been around since 1990 in one shape or another would feel the need to justify bringing in a woman as frontperson when they’ve never had one before, because really, so what? But that they’d even give it a second thought really says more about the culture of doom, which remains predominantly white and predominantly male, than anything to do with Solstice themselves. Far as I’m concerned they can do whatever the hell they want. I’m sure there are dudes of varying opinions. Perpetually.

Onward to their words:

Solstice singer

Attention! Achtung! Attenzione!

After months of inactivity we are happy to introduce you to our new full time vocalist, H.Thorne.

Some of you may recognise her as the former vocalist and songwriter from the US epic metal band CHALICE, one of the best bands of the past decade to emerge from the country.

Let us say this; as the band has grown it’s important to recognise that SOLSTICE represents not just an exclusive “men only” bastion, but an ongoing and ever evolving idea. And that idea does not exclude women.

It would be churlish also to not acknowledge Tom (While Heaven Wept), Scott (Cianide) and Felipe (Procession) who provided valuable insights and advice during all this.

As a consequence, we have with the aid of the sage like wisdom and technical skill of Mr. Richard Whittaker, made her audition recordings available via our bandcamp page as the “White Thane” release. These are free to download or leave or donation. You are under no compulsion to do anything else.

In closing, the choice was ours to make, it was neither made with cynicism or avarice in mind. It was made because she worked hard and shared our vision.

Tomorrow belongs to us!

Solstice is:
Hel Thorne: vocals
Rich Walker – Guitars
Andrew Whittaker – Guitars
Daryl Parson – Bass
Rick Budby – Drums

https://facebook.com/Solstice.Englander/
https://instagram.com/solstice.englander
https://solstice-englander.bandcamp.com/
http://solstice-englander.blogspot.com/

Solstice, White Thane Demos (2019)

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Cybernetic Witch Cult Post “Cromagnonaut” Video; Absurdum ad Nauseam out Dec. 6

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 20th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

cybernetic witch cult

UK sludge rockers Cybernetic Witch Cult are edging closer to the Dec. 6 self-release of their new album, Absurdum ad Nauseam, and in the new video for the cleverly-titled “Cromagnonaut,” they would seem to be asking the question of whether humanity is moving at too quick a pace in its self-driven evolution. I gotta say, dudes. Look around. The planet? It’s fucking on fire. And evolution ain’t the problem. The problem is morons. Too many morons, not enough evolution. Hell, throw in a little natural selection while you’re at it and let some of the relocated climate change polar bears start eating a few of these overlord dumbasses — even though they wouldn’t. The dumbasses live behind gates. The bears would do the exact opposite of what we need and eat the poor and we all know it. That’s no use to anyone.

Polar bears as a means to inciting a Marxist socialist paradise? Fucking if only.

But anyway, “Might we be evolving too fast for our own good?” is a question bound to provoke an answer one way or the other. I know that while I listened in the background to impeachment hearings and as I think about Boris Johnson dismantling the UK government because… …. … hang on… nope… uh…

So anyway, I don’t think we’re evolving too fast. Maybe ask the coral reef how it feels about human evolution and our warped idea of what it means. I agree we are an infant species. With nuclear weapons.

Phew, I’m exhausted.

Cybernetic Witch Cult‘s actual video for the song chronicles one of the many UK back-and-forths they’ve done over the last couple years, and it looks like the band are a good time live. Everybody nods and has fun and stops thinking for five minutes about how the world is collapsing. Seems nice.

Enjoy:

Cybernetic Witch Cult, “Cromagnonaut” official video

Taken from the upcoming album: ‘Absurdum ad Nauseam’ (Self release, 6th December 2019)

‘Cromagnonaut’ is examining the human race as being an infant species, and how stone age humans are now essentially piloting spaceships. Might we be evolving too fast for our own good? Can we spread life amongst the stars and preserve the 4.5 billions years worth of evolution before it gets wiped out?

This video was filmed entirely on our October 2019 tour. Special thanks to Mother Vulture, Morass of Molasses and Victus for filming our sets and the venues: Underground (Plymouth), Firehouse (Southampton), Cavern (Exeter), Jacobs Ladder (Falmouth), Wheatsheaf (Banbury), Edge of the Wedge (Portsmouth), The Ship (Weymouth).
Hope you enjoy!

Credits:
Editor / Production | Alex Wyld
Camera Assistant | Bones, Georgi, Brodie, Klayton, Sam.
Musicians | Alex Wyld, Doug MacKinnon, Lewis May
Music Production | Cro’s Nest, Sam Thredder
Artwork| Aimee Wyld

Cybernetic Witch Cult are:
Alex Wyld – Vocals & Guitar
Doug MacKinnon – Bass Guitar
Lewis May – Drums & Percussion

Cybernetic Witch Cult website

Cybernetic Witch Cult on Thee Facebooks

Cybernetic Witch Cult on Instagram

Cybernetic Witch Cult on Bandcamp

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Beggar to Release Debut Album Compelled to Repeat in April; “Nine Atmospheres” Video Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 20th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

I’m all for an early heads up, and I know that in a crowded promotional atmosphere, the sooner you can get word out about a thing happening, the better. Still, an album announcement upward of five months ahead of the actual release is a long time. I suspect part of the quirk of timing on the part of London sludge extremists Beggar — who should scratch the itch of anyone who found moral opposition to the Iron Monkey “reunion” too much to overcome — play the Sophie Fest this weekend and they wanted to get their new video for “Nine Atmospheres” out and give a promo push before that. I can’t argue with the logic, frankly. “Nine Atmospheres” is ridiculous in the heaviest way possible, and it promises an onslaught across their debut LP, Compelled to Repeat, that could position Beggar among the heavier end of the spectrum for APF Records.

And if you know the label, you know that’s saying something.

I have the distinct feeling we’ll be hearing about Beggar again in the next few months. There’s plenty of time until the release, and they would seem to have plenty of broken-bottle-against-the-neck sludge to fill it.

Dig:

beggar

Monolithic Post Metallers BEGGAR Release New Track; Announce Debut Album Compelled to Repeat to be released via APF Records April 2020

Emerging from the nihilistic quagmire of London, four-piece BEGGAR propound a kind of sludge-meets-extreme-metal carnival of tar thick riffs, blasts, emotional discharge and anguish.

Today the band have released standalone track and video ‘Nine Atmospheres’ which showcases the band at their most raw and misanthropic point. Recorded with Wayne Adams (responsible for recent works by Green Lung, 11Paranoias and Terminal Cheesecake) at Bear Bites Horse, London and mastered by the master of noise himself, James Plotkin (Sunn O))), ISIS, Pelican and Earth), the track comes ahead of their debut album Compelled To Repeat which is scheduled for release in April 2020 via APF Records.

Commenting on the track vocalist Charlie Davis says: “The track ‘Nine Atmospheres’ is about pressure, anxiety, the corporate world and the environment. It’s about the banality and the aggression of the contemporary world and the struggle to reconcile yourself to social and economic norms and to the destruction of nature. However, in a larger way, it’s also about the moments in which you can see straight through that world to something a bit older and darker (‘liquid magma lakes’, blistering lava’, etc.) The title ‘Nine Atmospheres’ refers to the amount of pressure measured in atmospheres that the human body can withstand underwater before it begins to rupture (like the track begins to rupture towards the end).”

Originally founded in Bristol in 2011 as a means of melding big stoner grooves with a blackened outlook and mode of expression, BEGGAR have honed their bubbling hatred over a series of EPs (culminating in 2017’s Chainscraper EP) into something that might defy categorisation altogether.

Impossible to fit within the stoner bracket, their sound nonetheless nods to the huge monoliths of tone that such a tag implies. More multi-faceted than the death metal or hardcore genres would allow, BEGGAR still use the sheer brutality and visceral dynamics of those styles as their primary means of propulsion.

Comprised of Charlie Davis (vocals/bass), Abraham Whitworth (guitars), Jake Leyland (guitars/vocals) and Bertrand Sautier (drums, formerly of French deathgrind outfit Sedative), BEGGAR have shared stages with the likes of Eyehategod, Slabdragger, Elephant Tree and The Obsessed.

Catch the band live at The Dev, London on 21st November and then at The Sophie Lancaster Festival (Sophie Fest) in Manchester on 23rd November.

Beggar are:
Charlie Davis (vocals/bass)
Abraham Whitworth (guitars)
Jake Leyland (guitars/vocals)
Bertrand Sautier (drums)

http://www.facebook.com/beggarband
https://www.instagram.com/beggar_uk
http://thusspokethebeggar.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/apfrecords
https://www.instagram.com/apfrecords/
https://apfrecords.bigcartel.com/
https://apfrecords.bandcamp.com/
http://www.apfrecords.co.uk/

Beggar, “Nine Atmospheres” official video

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Elder Druid Post “Golgotha” Video; Announce Jan. 17 Album Release Date

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 20th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

elder druid golgotha video

I don’t mind telling you that I’ve seen at this point in my life a fair amount of videos that feature a band walking around, either playing or doing something spooky, in the woods. Like, a lot of them. In the era of the-technology-is-so-cheap-that-every-band-is-basically-expected-to-make-at-least-one-per-LP, it’s only fair there would be some overlap in subject matter in a genre — that’s what genre is, essentially — and in any case, it’s certainly not something to hold against anyone. I like walking in the woods sometimes too, as long as it’s dry. Actually, who the hell am I kidding? I like sitting on my ass on the couch and watching Star Trek. Going grocery shopping for me is like a major effort these days.

Before I get any further off-track here, Elder Druid‘s new clip for the title-track of their impending album, Golgotha — confirmed for a Jan. 17, 2020, release — is indeed one of the off-to-the-forest-type clips, and yet, having seen a number of them as I have, I’m still struck by the woods in question. They’re beautiful. The band apparently filmed in Woodburn Forest, in Carrickfergus, about 35 minutes southeast from their home in Ballymena toward the Northern Irish eastern coastline, and yeah, the scenery is just gorgeous. There’s some shaky-cam stuff in the video — fair enough considering the sludge-doom assault happening at concurrently in the music — but the video is otherwise shot in a kind of sepia filter that plays up the visual impact of the place, and having been in Northern Ireland for a few days earlier this year and felt like I saw any number of righteous sights, I clearly also missed one along the way. Guess my trip’s itinerary was too focused on politically-driven murder to go spend any time dicking around among the trees. So it goes.

Oh, and kudos to the band on finding a sunny day to shoot. That couldn’t have been easy either.

Elder Druid play this week in Bangor (not Maine) and then head across to England for four dates with Barbarian Hermit next week. They’ll do Crypt of the Riff, which they’re involved in organizing, and then it’s on to the album release party — a two-parter party, no less — and more festivals later in 2020 that one assumes will be supplemented by tour dates to come. Nothing like keeping busy.

Or sitting on ass, enjoying the view:

Elder Druid, “Golgotha” official video

Official music video for ‘Golgotha’, the title track from our upcoming album ‘Golgotha’ due for release in January 2020.

Filming and editing: Exposing Shadows Photography.
Performances: Patrycja Dziedzic, April Morgan & Elder Druid.
Special thanks: Fresh Garbage for providing costumes and Peter Clarke for his assistance in shooting the video.

Music:
Written and performed by Elder Druid.
Produced by Dale Hughes in Blackstaff Mill, Belfast.

Elder Druid live:
22.11: Elder Druid & Nomadus | The Goat’s Toe, Bangor
28.11: Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Gandalf the Green | Temple of Boom, Leeds
29.11: Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Slowbro | The Phoenix, Coventry
30.11: Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Bad Kush | The Lounge 666, London
01.12: Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Kong Lives | Fuel Rock Club, Cardiff
13.12: Crypt of the Riff Vol. 4
17.01: Elder Druid • ‘Golgotha’ Album Launch • Voodoo, Belfast
18.01: Elder Druid • ‘Golgotha’ Album Launch • Fibber Magees, Dublin
01.05: Iron Mountain Metal Festival 2020
06.06: Stonebaked Festival
31.07: Monolith 2020

Elder Druid is:
Gregg McDowell – Vocals
Jake Wallace – Lead Guitar
Mikey Scott – Rhythm Guitar
Dale Hughes – Bass Guitar
Brien Gillen – Drums

Elder Druid on Thee Facebooks

Elder Druid on Bandcamp

Elder Druid on Instagram

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The Cult of Dom Keller Set Jan. 17 Release for Ascend!; New Song Streaming

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 19th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

the cult of dom keller

I know I’ve said this before, but if you’ve got a quota for weird, The Cult of Dom Keller will make short work thereof. The Devon, UK, four-piece have a Jan. 17 release for their exclamatory new album, Ascend!, and they’ve been streaming the single “Right Wrong” since the start of September and while I’m not sure if it’ll end up on the final version of the record — which will be out through Cardinal Fuzz and Little Cloud Records — its cavernous guitars ring out in righteous British dystopian fashion. Think Blade Runner stark lines over ambient whatnottery and vocals lurking down in the mix like post-all and not a care in the universe for anything beyond expression. I dig. You? I don’t know. I can’t tell you how to live your life.

The vibe is dark, dark, dark, dark, so be ready for that. If the record is Ascend!, then this might be the senses-overwhelmed, encounter-with-the-unfathomable portion of the story. Obviously I’m curious to see/hear/taste how the rest comes out.

Preorders aren’t open yet so far as I can tell, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that happens soon and I wouldn’t be surprised if they sell out on preorders, because, you know, boutique psych and all that.

Be informed!

the cult of dom keller ascend

Excited to announce details of the first of 2 release for Friday Jan 17th 2020

The Cult Of Dom Keller – Ascend!

a 500 pressing with a ltd Orange Colour Vinyl. Presented in a 350gsm Card Sleeve with full colour insert and Download code. Sam Giles Vinyl Replica Cdr edition too.

Prepare your ears for some serious melt-downs and wig-outs.

Coming via Cardinal Fuzz and Little Cloud Records

Artwork – Brett Savage

Ryan: Vocals/Lead Guitars/Keys
Neil: Vocals/Keys/Tambourine
Jason: Guitar/Synthesizer/BkVocals
Liam: Bass
Al: Drums/Percussion/Samples

https://www.facebook.com/cultofdomkeller/
https://thecultofdomkeller.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/CardinalFuzz/
cardinalfuzz.bigcartel.com/
https://littlecloudrec.com/
https://littlecloudrecords.bandcamp.com/

The Cult of Dom Keller, “Right Wrong”

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Undersmile Reunite

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 18th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Welcome back, Undersmile. The last post I had concerning the UK atmospheric megasludge four-piece — posted on Sept. 19, 2016 — was titled simply “Undersmile Break Up.” Hard to get more straightforward with that. Now that they’ve just announced they’re re-banded — as opposed to disbanded — it seems only fair to lead with something likewise terse.

The group called it quits on the heels of their best work, which was 2015’s Anhedonia (review here) on Black Bow Records, and as the UK underground has continued to grow in amorphous fashion, their lurking, lingering misty heft has been missed. The reasons for the breakup were simple enough: life, school, other concerns, and so on, but they’ll play Chaos Theory Festival in London on Feb. 29 as their first show back and are looking to do more throughout 2020 as well. Hey guys, did you know that in your absence Desertfest opened a base of operations in New York? Just an idea.

And while I’m getting ahead of myself because I’m stoked Undersmile have returned, I asked if they might have new material written during their time away from the stage and studio, and yeah, they do. Quite reasonably, they’re getting older songs re-nailed down for the fest in Feb. and then they’ll start to think about piecing together and finalizing a follow-up for Anhedonia. From that timeline I’d say maybe 2021?

When I hear something, I’ll post accordingly. In the meantime, they had this to say about the reunion:

undersmile (Photo by Helen Messenger)

We’ve all really missed playing together in Undersmile for the last few years while personal commitments took precedence, but now we’re ready to get back to being an active band, playing gigs, and writing the next Undersmile album. We’re very excited to get back to business.

Our comeback gig is Chaos Theory Festival which takes place at The Dome in Tufnell Park, London on February 29th 2020.
https://www.facebook.com/events/2027020767603675/

See you in 2020.

Undersmile:
Tom McKibbin – Drums
Olly Corona-Brown – Bass
Hel Sterne – Vocals and Lead Guitars
Taz Corona-Brown – Vocals and Guitars

http://www.facebook.com/Undersmile
https://undersmile.bandcamp.com/album/anhedonia
http://blackbowrecords.bigcartel.com/product/bbow007-undersmile-anhedonia-double-lp

Undersmile, Anhedonia (2015)

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Desertfest London 2020 Second Lineup Announcement: Witchcraft Headlining; Conan, Naxatras, Sacri Monti & More Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 11th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

desertfest london 2020 header

Going head-to-head, toe-to-toe, back-to-back, belly-to-belly with Desertfest Berlin 2020’s second lineup announcement, that of Desertfest London 2020 brings a whopping 13 bands. Witchcraft join Corrosion of Conformity and Masters of Reality among the headliners, and Naxatras, Conan — playing Monnos in full, no less — Pissed Jeans, Raging Speedhorn, Sacri Monti, Huntsmen, MonarchSpirit AdriftFire Down BelowGrottoDesert Storm, and Morag Tong have signed on for the fray in what’s becoming a quickly-packed bill. Nothing to complain about there, I guess. As noted in the Berlin post, some of these groups are shared between the two fests, but there’s a lot here that’s set for London alone, and I suspect in terms of the UK acts like Raging SpeedhornDesert Storm and Morag Tong, it’s likely to stay that way. It’s been so fascinating to watch these festivals grow since their inception into incubators for UK/European heavy. Desertfest London has become an epicenter for one of the most packed scenes on the planet.

That’s a big deal. And you can hear in the work of bands coming out of the UK the effect it’s having aesthetically as well. It’s awesome. Keep up the good work.

From the social medias:

desertfest london 2020 poster

DESERTFEST LONDON ANNOUNCES WITCHCRAFT AS HEADLINER FOR 2020 EDITION PLUS 12 MORE ACTS ADDED!

Tickets: dice.fm/festival/desertfest20

Desertfest is honoured to be welcoming Swedish doom icons Witchcraft to London, for the first time in a decade, as 2020 headliners. Their exceptional blend of psychedelic-folk melodies and distinctly doom-laden riffs swiftly elevated Magnus’ musical coven to legendary status. The pace picks up with the bludgeoning sludge-punk sounds of Pissed Jeans, whose narrative continues to be as societally insightful as it is tongue-in-cheek. We welcome back the unholy trio Conan for a very special performance as they play ‘Monnos’ in full. Following last years unforeseen travel issues, we are thrilled to have Naxatras on the bill ready to bathe listeners in their psychedelic groove. British sludge pioneers Raging Speedhorn will provide a lesson in brutality for all who cross their path.

Celestial tones awaken as SACRI MONTI make their debut with a spectrum of far-out jams expertly pieced together for an otherworldly trip. Huntsmen will bring their diversely progressive concoction of doom metal and melancholic Americana storytelling for its first UK outing. Elsewhere we welcome experimental psych-rock champions Monarch -band, Arizona’s Spirit Adrift who effortlessly carry the torch for traditional doom with lashings of classic 80’s heavy metal. Belgium offers up an excellent fusion of fuzz from Fire Down Below, alongside space-psych drifters Grotto. Oxfordshire riff hounds Desert Storm will deliver a shock-wave of groovy stoner-metal and locals Morag Tong will showcase their dynamic take on psychedelic doom.

For more info and weekend tickets for Desertfest London 2020 hit up www.desertfest.co.uk

See you in May!

TICKETS: https://dice.fm/festival/desertfest20 (*YOU DO NOT NEED THE DICE APP TO PURCHASE)

Artwork by Piotr w. Osburne

https://www.facebook.com/events/464163361105416/
http://www.desertfest.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/DesertfestLondon
https://www.instagram.com/desertfest_london/

Sacri Monti, “Waiting Room for the Magic Hour”

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Elder Druid Announce English Touring with Barbarian Hermit & Satlan

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 31st, 2019 by JJ Koczan

elder druid (Photo by Twentyone Photography)

Elder Druid will hop islands at the end of November to do a four-show British run of shows with Barbarian Hermit and Satlan. My understanding from this past Spring was that the Northern Irish five-piece were planning to release their new album, Golgotha, before the end of 2019. I haven’t heard word either way as to whether that’s still going to happen as was initially laid out, but figure if it is, this tour would either be the band’s way of celebrating the record’s arrival or maybe heralding it for early next year, barring some kind of more significant delay.

Either way, good for them getting out. Chubby Thunderous Bad Kush Masters will sit in for Satlan on the London show, and there’s local support as well. More on Golgotha when I hear it — either the news or the album, that is. Ha.

Here’s the tour info:

elder druid uk tour

ELDER DRUID – UK TOUR UPDATE – CARDIFF SHOW

Very stoked to finally announce our English tour coming up at the end of November. We’ll be joined by the incredible Barbarian Hermit and Satlan as our main tour supports, with the lads in Chubby Thunderous Bad Kush Masters stepping in for Satlan on the London date.

We can finally announce the last date of our UK shows at the end of November/start of December.

We’ll be playing FUEL ROCK CLUB in Cardiff, Wales on Sunday 1st December with our touring heavyweights Barbarian Hermit, Satlan and Wales’ very own stoner doom/post-metallers Kong Lives.

TOUR DATES:

28.11 • LEEDS • Temple Of Boom Leeds
Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Gandalf the Green

29.11 • COVENTRY • The Phoenix
Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Slowbro

30.11 • LONDON • The Lounge Promotion: Nightclub Kolis
Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Bad Kush

01.12 • CARDIFF • FUEL ROCK CLUB
Elder Druid / Barbarian Hermit / Satlan / Kong Lives

Elder Druid is:
Gregg McDowell – Vocals,
Jake Wallace – Guitar,
Mikey Scott – Guitar,
Dale Hughes – Bass,
Brien Gillen – Drums

https://www.facebook.com/elderdruidband
https://elderdruid.bandcamp.com/releases
http://www.instagram.com/elderdruidband

Elder Druid, Carmina Satanae (2017)

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