audiObelisk: The Tower Premiere “Exile” from Hic Abundant Leones Debut LP

Posted in audiObelisk on February 20th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

The Latin title of Swedish classic heavy rockers The Tower‘s full-length debut, Hic Abundant Leones, translates to “here are many lions.” A warning. Likewise, one might take a listen to the three-minute track “Exile” from The Tower‘s first outing for Bad Omen (North American distro via Prosthetic) and take it as a sign of what the record itself has in store. Just as a lion isn’t the only thing that can kill you in the jungle, so too does Hic Abundant Leones have a deceptively multi-pronged attack, and while “Exile” gives a solid demonstration of the Uppsala four-piece’s retro vibes and penchant for lyrical references — you’ll note appearances from The Doormouse and Queen of Hearts, à la both Jefferson Airplane and Alice in Wonderland — it’s by no means a complete overview of the album’s nine-track/48-minute span.

Immediate comparisons to Graveyard will be made for “Exile,” thanks in part to the bluesy vocal cadences of frontman Erik, but The Tower are more push than boogie, ultimately, and as cuts like “Lucy,” “Moonstoned” and the closing eponymous cut “The Tower” range past six minutes each — the latter clocking in at 11:41 to serve as the longest on Hic Abundant Leones and a companion piece to the Beatles-references in “Lucy” — the band seem to be pushing against such convenient assignations. Still, with their warmth of tone and natural, live-sounding spaciousness, the guitars of August, bass of Viktor and drums of Tommie, not to mention the nods in the lyrics to Baby Boomer greats, Hic Abundant Leones puts forth a heavy ’70s loyalism that comes through on just about every level of their presentation.

They not only acknowledge this in the songs themselves, but even unto their bio, which follows a timeline beginning in 1938 and carrying the band through the ’70s and into 2012, when they reportedly emerged following rumors of the end of the world with — what else? — the demo that led to this album. Good times.

Hic Abundant Leones is due out April 15 on Bad Omen Records. Preorders are available now. More info from the aforementioned bio follows the premiere of “Exile” below.

Please enjoy:

The Tower, “Exile”

“It was back in 1938 that the brothers Erik and August and their friend Viktor migrated south. They left the small village in the northern forests where they grew up for the big city and the university, to study the science of harvesting the earth. On the fields beside the burial mounds in old Uppsala they met Tommie, a Soviet refugee. He showed them his sole possession, a blues vinyl from 5300 BC, suspecting that it would fit their melancholy northern souls. The four sat down in a barn and played a blues jam which lasted until 1945, when the war ended and the post-apocalyptic nuclear winter began…”

So begins the extraordinary tale of Swedish ‘bad luck boogie’ combo THETOWER, whose cryptic, swinging timewarp of a debut LP is now released via London’s Bad Omen Records. The offbeat freakbeat and phantasmagorical psych-blues of Hic Abundant Leones exude an ageless charm and resounding singularity, striking eerie, dreamlike atmospheres that seemingly confirm THE TOWER’s eccentric parallel-universe narrative.

Sorting facts from the fantasy of the band’s complex mythology proves onerous; the quartet bonded during “long, all-night rehearsals in an old vicarage outside of Uppsala” and “began as some kind of personal quest for us but once we realised that we had a gospel we started preaching it. It is not something new. It is as ancient as the Sumerian blues records played by the Dionysos cults of the Postapocalyptic Era. Moreover, there have always been prophets of this gospel: wrayed Indians, electric shamans, crazy horses, black skinheads, exhumed singers, diddlying sheriffs, mean lick hookers, third eye girls, many a stooge, all-man brothers, Birmingham attendants of the Sabbath, and many, many more.”

Allegedly splitting in the 70s, they returned to the Tower in 1983, where they remained until 2012 - “when rumours of the end of the world enticed them to leave”. They recorded a demo (soon pressed to 12″ by Dybbuk Records) before cutting this mystical long-player. “The days in the studio were smooth. The loveable Joona Hassinen, who we recorded with, made us feel very comfortable, as if we were rehearsing in our ‘tower room’.”

And what is the significance of that peculiar title? “We saw it written on an ancient map of the (then known) world. It literally means ‘here are lions in abundance’ and was used by the cartographer to designate a uncivilised, wild and dangerous territory. When applied to Northern Scandinavia it becomes very weird, because there are no lions here, but this only furthers the poetry by making the lions mythical. The record is such a territory. So is the place where we rehearse. And stages we play on, and the vistas of our minds, the future and the past; the unknowns we want to explore and yet, paradoxically, also the regions where we feel the most at home.”

The Tower on Thee Facebooks

Bad Omen Records

Prosthetic Records

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Noctum Unveil Art, Tracks and Audio from Final Sacrifice

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 26th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Swedish trad metal/doomers Noctum will release their Metal Blade debut, Final Sacrifice, on Oct. 29. In accordance with the bylaws and procedures of such events, the Uppsala four-pice have begun to drop hints as to where the follow-up to 2010′s The Seance and 2011′s The Fiddler EP might take them, alluding to a horror narrative running throughout the songs as well as actually going so far to release one of those songs for free stream and download through Metal Blade‘s Soundcloud. You can hear that following the info below, freshly dragged in from the PR wire.

Boogie:

NOCTUM Reveal Album Artwork and Track Listing for New Full-Length Album Final Sacrifice

Available October 29th on Metal Blade Records

Swedish rockers NOCTUM have confirmed an October 29th release date for their Metal Blade Records debut Final Sacrifice. Today the artwork and track listing have been revealed. The cover art was painted by Timo Ketola (Sunn o))), Arktau Eos) and fits perfectly with the album’s raw, natural sound.

In the town of Uppsala, Sweden in the year 2009 a band called Séance was formed. Moving at breakneck speed the band formed in September, recorded a two-song demo after adding guitarist Per Wikström to the lineup in October, and by November had changed their name to NOCTUM. Within those three months, the band signed an LP deal with High-Roller Records, and a CD deal with Stormspell Records.

NOCTUM’s debut album, The Séance, was released in September 2010 via High-Roller and in December by Stormspell. The band finally embarked on their first European tour in July of 2011, and followed that up with a new EP, The Fiddler.

By August of 2011, NOCTUM created enough buzz in the underground to gain the attention of Metal Blade Records, which led to a new worldwide record deal.

With a new record deal in place with a global label, NOCTUM spent the majority of 2012 refining their sound and writing new songs. Their search for original and interesting material led them to a heavier and darker sound. The progression came very naturally for the band and differs from the typical 70′s vibe. The new material successfully evokes a heaviness and emotion one might not expect from a “retro” sounding band.

Noctum toured Europe again in 2012, and then welcomed the addition of drummer Fredrik Jansson after Gustaf’s departure. Jansson, who spent time in Witchcraft, Count Raven, and Abramis Brama, was added to the lineup in time to record Final Sacrifice in April 2013.

Final Sacrifice is a fictional horror story where each song communicates a portion of the overall narrative. The “final sacrifice” is like a red thread that ties the songs together and is the concept behind the art. Final Sacrifice is an analog piece of art in both audio and visual aspects.

Final Sacrifice Track Listing:
1. Conflagration
2. Liberty in Death
3. Resurrected in Evil
4. Deadly Connection
5. Void of Emptiness
6. The Revisit
7. A Burning Will
8. Temple of the Living Dead
9. Azoth

Noctum Lineup:
David Indelöf – Guitar/Vocals
Daniel Johansson – Guitar
Tobias Rosén – Bass
Fredrik Jansson – Drums

For More Info Visit:
http://www.noctumofficial.com
https://www.facebook.com/Noctumofficial
http://www.metalblade.com

Noctum, “Liberty in Death” from Final Sacrifice

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audiObelisk: Anguish Stream “Lair of the Gods” from Through the Archdemon’s Head

Posted in audiObelisk on January 19th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

As much as the summer belongs to fuzzy heavy psych in my mind, the winter belongs to doom. The slow march to frostbitten oblivion. Darker, shorter days and that feeling that there’s no way out of the cold. Fuck yeah.

Hailing from the frozen recesses of Uppsala, Sweden, the appropriately-monikered four-piece Anguish make their debut this week on Dark Descent Records with the full-length, Through the Archdemon‘s Head, a collection of traditionally-paced doom that brings in elements of cultish and blackened metal, most notably in a pronounced Celtic Frost vocal influence, but in the music as well. It’s dark, and morose, and hopeless. Perfect for January.

In fact, if you suffer from seasonal affective disorder, I’m gonna go ahead and recommend you don’t stream the track “Lair of the Gods” from Through the Archdemon’s Head using the player below, because by the time you get to the second or third grunt, it might just be enough to make you jump out that window you’ve been eying all afternoon. Everyone else, if you’ve got any hope left to lose, this is about as good a way to see it go as I can think of.

Check out “Lair of the Gods” from Anguish, and enjoy:

Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!

Anguish is J. Dee on vocals, David and Kribbe on guitar and Ralle on drums. Through the Archdemon’s Head is available now on Dark Descent Records. For more info, check out the band’s page on Thee Facebooks or the label’s site.

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