Review & Track Premiere: Pushy, Hard Wish

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on June 19th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

pushy hard wish

[Click play above to stream the premiere of ‘Blacktop’ by Pushy. Their debut album, Hard Wish, ships in July from Who Can You Trust? Records and is available to preorder now.]

Classic heavy rock played with conviction, heart and an obvious appreciation for the finer things in life when it comes to riffs — there’s a lot to like immediately about Pushy‘s debut album, Hard Wish. Delivered like their prior split 12″ with Ragged Barracudas (review here) through Who Can You Trust? Records, the awaited release from the Portland, Oregon, outfit conjures a fuzzy vision of ’70s heavy that does more than just boogie, though of course there’s plenty of that as well. From earliest AC/DC to Thin Lizzy, to ZZ TOP, to King Crimson, to a sudden turn from stripped-down KISS strut into an atmospheric prog-out on “If I Cry,” it’s record that makes a point of going where and doing what it damn well pleases, and it even manages to include a wah-drenched revamp of their catchy original demo, “El Hongo” (discussed here) and its eight-track/40-minute run makes for an engaging, organic, live-sounding listen that makes the advice “take it easy” seem like time-honored wisdom.

Comprised of guitarist/vocalist Adam Burke (formerly of Fellwoods), who’s also responsible for the paintings on the front and back of the LP, as well as having done art for this site and a universe of others, Crag Dweller‘s Travis Clow, Neal Munson of Billions and Billions and Ron Wesley of Hosmanek, the four-piece set an easygoing vibe from the very first crashes and shuffling grooves of opener “Fanny’s,” and while they might careen from one influence to the next and offer a bit of zleaze (yup, spelled with two ‘z’s) here and there, it’s all in good fun and Hard Wish succeeds in casting its own identity from the varied elements that make it up, whether that’s the gallop of “Nasty Bag” or the arena-rock grandiosity in the beginning of “If I Cry.”

And there’s a flow at work. Wrapping up side A after “Fanny’s” and second cut “Nasty Bag,” with its nyah-nyah-nyah opening and street-rocking swing, “Blacktop” offers a first glimpse of Pushy‘s progressive side, digging back to the first King Crimson record like it ain’t no thing and pairing that with a proto-burl riff that in most hands would be repelled from the prior stretch like magnets refusing to touch but is absolutely made to work here. By the time they’re rushing through delivering the title-line, Pushy have expanded the context of “Blacktop” an album’s worth, and the fuzzy nod that emerges from there and turns back to the central riff is pure gravy. Only then does “If I Cry” build on the prog edge of “Blacktop” with its own relatively patient beginning and midsection break, the guitars leading the way through about a minute of instrumental exploration that gives way to silence before a volume-swelling solo emerges to wind the way back to the central rhythm, which gets topped with its own victory-lap of a lead before they noodle their way to the end. From that somewhat hypnotic finish, “El Hongo” eases its way in to start off side B with room for a bit of its own psychedelic meandering amid a landmark-feeling hook that’s a standout from the album as a whole.

Pushy 2018

The boogie is writ large over the secondary leadoff, but at five minutes, it’s not necessarily a mirror of “Fanny’s” at the start of the record, which had a shorter clocktime and more straightforward structure without the midsection departure that some of the longer songs make. In that regard, “If I Cry” is something of a foreshadow for the 10-minute closer “Lay of the Land” that follows “El Hongo,” “Lonesome Entry,” and “I’ll Be Gentle,” the latter two of which are also of the shorter variety. No doubt that vinyl considerations came into play when putting together the tracklisting with four songs per side, getting the runtimes close, and so on, but it’s worth pointing out that it works exceedingly well in terms of the front-to-back, with “Fanny’s” setting the tone literally and figuratively while smoothing the way into “Nasty Bag” and the three tracks that follow before “Lonesome Entry,” which is the shortest of the bunch at 2:27, ignites a speedy Cactus-style brashness with Burke‘s vocals hitting a higher register to match the more frenetic pacing of the verses.

Naturally, those are offset by more midpaced transitional sections and though it’s the shortest inclusion at 2:27, Pushy still squeeze in those tempo shifts before the before the cold ending brings on “I’ll Be Gentle” brings forth more boogie vibes and hooks in both its verse and chorus. There’s a tongue-in-cheek aspect to the lyrics — if I’m not mistaken there’s a reference to a “velvet hand” — but the classic feel of the songwriting and the live-style vibe of the recording come through just the same as on “Lonesome Entry” and really everything else before it. And it’s fitting that the two shorter cuts should give way to “Lay of the Land” at the end of the record, which not only makes the most of its two guitars but brings the rhythm section as well to some of its finest moments.

It’s an unenviable task to summarize what Hard Wish has thus far brought forth in its scope of formative heavy, but most if it appears within the more extended finale, from the patient and progressive opening to the subdued verses and the greater build and release that happens later on. Some parts seem to be begging for organ accompaniment, but I guess one has to leave some ground to cover on a sophomore outing, and as their debut, Hard Wish basks in its inspirations without falling into boogie rock cliché — except where it wants to, as on “I’ll Be Gentle” — and sets up a balance of straight-ahead and more exploratory movements to be toyed with from here on out. It’s a sound that, should Pushy be interested in such things, they can keep growing and expanding, since as we know the realm of classic heavy rock is by no means relegated to the past, and the chemistry between players on display throughout Hard Wish is of the sort that can’t be faked, least of all in such a stage-born-sounding context. From a Pacific Northwest so bent on partying, Pushy bring just a touch of class to the proceedings and remind that not all good times need to be overblown to be memorable.

Pushy on Thee Facebooks

Pushy on Instagram

Pushy on Bandcamp

Who Can You Trust? Records on Thee Facebooks

Who Can You Trust? Records website

Who Can You Trust? Records on Bandcamp

Pushy LP preorders from Who Can You Trust? Records

Tags: , , , , , ,

Hot Lunch Premiere New Single “Haul of Meat”

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on June 8th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

hot lunch

Chances are you never thought ‘spatula of Satan’ was the kind of hook that you’d have stuck in your head. Well, Bay Area heavy skate rockers Hot Lunch will see their new single, Haul of Meat ship out July 16 via Who Can You Trust? Records, and in the span of 3:41, it just might have you rethinking your position on the matter. The single, which comes accompanied on its B-side by “Pot of Gold,” which is a title one might read in any number of ways depending on how clever one is feeling, marks Hot Lunch‘s first outing since 2015’s Slappy Sunday EP (review here) — issued by the now-defunct Scion A/V — and if you’re wondering what the four-piece have been doing with the time in between, uh, I don’t know. Probably hanging out. Skating. Maybe having jobs. You know, life stuff.

With the arrival of Haul of Meat, however, their return to activity comes caked in classic heavy fuzz, the warm and buzzing guitar of Aaron Nudelman holding ’70s-style sway over the shuffle-into-proto-thrash-into-CaptainBeyond-prog-at-the-last-minute groove of bassist Charlie Karr and drummer Rob Alper while vocalist Eric Shea spins the tale of skin-meets-sidewalk woe — hot lunch haul of meatthe perils of skateboarding providing the fodder for the lyrics, “Hit the ground/Quarter pound/Spatula of Satan,” etc. Obviously the vibe is lighthearted despite any and all scars accrued, and with a live sound and flourish of tambourine and the aforementioned out-of-nowhere turn to prog-circa’72 at the finish, there’s a residual sense of weirdness that only makes it an even better time. Shea ends with a multi-layered “Get behind me, Satan,” as if to underscore the purely West Coast vibe throughout. That sense of, “yeah man we’re just screwing around,” while also kicking serious ass in the process.

As for what Hot Lunch have planned after Haul of Meat, I haven’t the foggiest. New album? Maybe. They’re due, if you believe in “due.” Leading up to the release of the two-songer, they’ll be on the road in Europe, starting June 29 in Switzerland and hitting a good swath of shows over the course of the two weeks-plus following in Germany and Italy, finishing the Heavy Psych Sounds-presented run — more than a jaunt, less than a temporary residence, but definitely a tour — at the respected Stoned from the Underground fest in Germany alongside Nebula, Orchid, Sons of Otis, and of course many others. What comes next, we’ll have to wait and see.

And before I give you over to the stream, you should know that I’m not just running this so I can re-post the band’s quote about scabs turning into cheeseburgers for Satan. That rules, make no mistake, but so does the song.

Tour dates and that badass commentary follows the song on the player below, courtesy of the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

Taken from the HOT LUNCH – “Haul Of Meat / Pot Of Gold” 7-inch | WHO-35

Hot Lunch are not ambassadors of skateboarding. They are harbingers of hamburgers. “Haul of Meat” is a skatanic and cautionary canticle that rolls like an avalanche of high-voltage, overdriven fuzz across rumbling rhythms birthed by broken tectonic plates beneath Earthquake City. When asked to explain the caustic lyrics of this urethane-and-wood musing, the band replied, “You know when sometimes you slam so hard that your scabs become cheeseburgers for Satan and the tail of your deck turns into the devil’s spatula?” When further pressed to clarify, they added, “We have a holographic memory. Satan!”

Edition of 500 copies on black vinyl. Free ‘Sacrificial Blood’ sticker included with a limited number of copies! (Only 100 made… Choose your path, but do it wisely!)

hot lunch tour posterHOT LUNCH European Summer Tour 2018:
29.06.2018 CH Frauenfeld-Kaff
30.06.2018 DE Siegen-Vortex
01.07.2018 DE Augsburg-City Club
02.07.2018 DE Mannheim-7er
03.07.2018 DE Leipzig-So&So
04.07.2018 DE Berlin-Urban Spree
05.07.2018 DE Dresden-Chemiefabrik
06.07.2018 CH Olten-Coq D’ Or
07.07.2018 IT Bozen-Mountain Sessions
08.07.2018 IT Sabbioneta-Sabbio Summer Fest
09.07.2018 IT Zerobranco-Altroquando
10.07.2018 IT Torino-Blah Blah
11.07.2018 IT Bologna-Mikasa
12.07.2018 DE Stuttgart-Keller Klub
13.07.2018 CH St Gallen-Rumpeltum
14.07.2018 DE Stoned from the Underground – Festival

HOT LUNCH are
Eric Shea – Vocals
Aaron Nudelman – Guitars
Rob Alper – Drums
Charlie Karr – Bass

Hot Lunch on Thee Facebooks

Heavy Psych Sounds on Thee Facebooks

Heavy Psych Sounds website

Hot Lunch Haul of Meat preorder at Who Can You Trust? Records

Who Can You Trust? Records on Bandcamp

Who Can You Trust? Records webstore

Tags: , , , , , ,

Pushy Debut Album Hard Wish Available to Preorder

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 31st, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Pushy 2018

With a July 16 ship date, preorders are up for the awaited full-length debut from Portland, Oregon, classic heavy rockers Pushy. Dubbed Hard Wish in apparent homage to just how much I’d like my seven-month-old son to take his morning nap right now, the album follows a 2016 split with Germany’s Ragged Barracudas (review here), as well as an earlier 2015 two-songer, If I Cried, named in apparent — and prescient! — homage to that same seven-month-old’s question that if he just screams for 45 solid minutes, will it be enough to make me go upstairs and end his apparent torture. In answer: no.

Anyhoozle, I’ve been waiting for Pushy‘s debut since I heard their demo (discussed here) in 2014, and the group sound like they’ve got their boogie in fine working order on the first public audio to come from Hard Wish, which is second track “Nasty Bag,” which you’ll find streaming at the bottom of this post, along with the preorder link preceded by a snazzy bio.

From the PR wire:

pushy hard wish

Pushy – Hard Wish

Have you ever watched the 1977 video of Ram Jam playing “Black Betty” in somebody’s front yard and asked yourself, “Why don’t we have bands who party like that anymore?” And after the very first time you witnessed a young bellbottomed James Gang set up their gear in the Mexicali desert and riff through “Laguna Salada” during the opening credits to the 1971 film Zachariah, did you ask yourself, “Are there even any bands this good today?” Or what about that time you laid virgin eyes upon the gatefold to ZZ Top’s Tres Hombres and took in a panoramic photograph that could only be described as a taqueria orgy? Did you ask, “Why can’t a newer style band make me feel this special?”

The answer to all these questions lives and pulses within the four musicians who comprise the Portland, Oregon based hard rock quartet, Pushy. If your ears have yet to be seduced by the God-hammered choogle of Pushy, it’s not too late for you. Their debut album Hard Wish has been captured in the band’s natural element and then released into the wild by the good people of Who Can You Trust? Records – a label that knows how and where to mine the rich ore of timeless rock ‘n’ roll. If the hot buttered distortion of the opening song “Fanny’s” (with its saucy boogie and howling guitar leads) doesn’t put an electric strut in your butt, there’s a pretty good chance that rock ‘n’ roll may be none of your business.

John Fogerty once sang that the people on the river are happy to give. But if you listen closely to the hard and heavy stomp of “Nasty Bag,” it sounds like the people on the river are waiting to kill you. Pushy have the power of rock surging through their veins and sometimes this power channels stories and spirits to help move you into parallel dimensions. Take “El Hongo” for instance – between Ron Wesley coaxing a gold top Les Paul to scream and wail through a tweed Victoria Bassman, and Adam Burke crooning for us to take it easy and close our eyes, there could never exist a reason why we would ever want to not keep on chooglin’. And when Travis Clow and Neal Munson kick off the album’s bookend jam “Lay of the Land” with their callused hands working a well-oiled rhythm section, you can almost smell the grease burning on the gears as the bass and drums pump out a loose and juicy groove that’s just begging for the guitars to rain riffs like there’s a storm in hell and we’re all invited to hang out and drink their beer.”

-Eric Shea (Hot Lunch/Sweet Chariot)

Pushy is: Travis, Ron, Adam, Neal

https://www.facebook.com/SOPUSHY/
https://www.instagram.com/pushyrockgroup/
https://pushy.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Who-Can-You-Trust-Records/187406787966906
whocanyoutrustrec.wordpress.com
whocanyoutrustrec.bandcamp.com
https://whocanyoutrustrec.bigcartel.com/product/pushy-hard-wish-lp-pre-order

Pushy, “Nasty Bag”

Tags: , , , , , ,

Hot Lunch Announce European Tour; New Single Available to Preorder

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 30th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

hot lunch

Whatever else happens in 2018, I’m pretty sure I’ve just encountered the best usage of the phrase ‘cheeseburgers for satan’ that I’m going to find before December 31. Kudos then, to Bay Area skate rockers Hot Lunch, whose new single, Haul of Meat, is available to preorder now with a July 16 ship date from Who Can You Trust? Records and whose summer European tour is being presented by Heavy Psych Sounds. The run starts on June 29, and I assume they’ll have Haul of Meat with them on the road, its cautionary tale of, I guess, biting it, being spread far and wide as they make their way to the long-running Stoned from the Underground festival in Germany.

Release info and tour dates follow, both courtesy of the PR wire:

Heavy Psych Sounds Records & Booking is really stoked to announce the *** HOT LUNCH EUROPEAN SUMMER TOUR 2018 ***

Three years since their 2015 Slappy Sunday EP, Hot Lunch has returned from El Studio with a piping hot new single. Yes, “Haul of Meat” is another song inspired by skateboarding. But this isn’t a love letter. If you were expecting them to articulate how falling and getting back up is a metaphor for persistence, you’ve made a wrong turn. Go back. Rebate. And no, this is not one of those inspirational anthems about how pain is just “the feeling of fear leaving your body.” Upon close listen to “Haul Of Meat,” it sounds like the band is trying to warn you that your next case of road rash could wind up as Satan’s ground beef.

Ergo, the members of Hot Lunch are not ambassadors of skateboarding. They are harbingers of hamburgers. “Haul of Meat” is a skatanic and cautionary canticle that rolls like an avalanche of high-voltage, overdriven fuzz across rumbling rhythms birthed by broken tectonic plates beneath Earthquake City. When asked to explain the caustic lyrics of this urethane-and-wood musing, the band replied, “You know when sometimes you slam so hard that your scabs become cheeseburgers for Satan and the tail of your deck turns into the devil’s spatula?” When further pressed to clarify, they added, “We have a holographic memory. Satan!”

Edition of 500 copies on black vinyl. Free ‘Sacrificial Blood’ sticker included with a limited number of copies! (Only 100 made… Choose your path, but do it wisely!)

HOT LUNCH European Summer Tour 2018:
29.06.2018 CH Frauenfeld-Kaff
30.06.2018 DE Siegen-Vortex
01.07.2018 DE Augsburg-City Club
02.07.2018 DE Mannheim-7er
03.07.2018 DE Leipzig-So&So
04.07.2018 DE Berlin-Urban Spree
05.07.2018 DE Dresden-Chemiefabrik
06.07.2018 CH Olten-Coq D’ Or
07.07.2018 IT Bozen-Mountain Sessions
08.07.2018 IT Sabbioneta-Sabbio Summer Fest
09.07.2018 IT Zerobranco-Altroquando
10.07.2018 IT Torino-Blah Blah
11.07.2018 IT Bologna-Mikasa
12.07.2018 DE Stuttgart-Keller Klub
13.07.2018 CH St Gallen-Rumpeltum
14.07.2018 DE Stoned from the Underground – Festival

Hot Lunch is a punk ‘n’ roll band from the San Francisco/Oakland Bay Area that specializes in getting loud, getting weird and getting rad. The quartet’s unique blend of brown-acid skate-rock and wah-fuzz proto-metal was born in the bowels of skatanic rituals, biker beer busts and wizard staff meetings. With a head-bludgeoning sound that refuses to take sides (and showers), Hot Lunch are on a hell-bent mission to create the best party soundtrack in the history of all music. Their self-titled debut album was recorded by Tim Green at Louder Studios and is available on all formats by Who Can You Trust? Records (EU), Tee Pee Records and Burger Records (US).

HOT LUNCH are
Eric Shea – Vocals
Aaron Nudelman – Guitars
Rob Alper – Drums
Charlie Karr – Bass

https://www.facebook.com/HotLunchRocks/
https://www.facebook.com/HEAVYPSYCHSOUNDS
www.heavypsychsounds.com
whocanyoutrustrec.bandcamp.com
whocanyoutrustrec.bigcartel.com

Hot Lunch, “Pot of Gold”

Tags: , , , , , ,

Sweet Times Vol. 6 Now Available; Features Dealer, Char-Man, Hydromedusa and Zig Zags

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 22nd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Oh, how do they ever pack so much rock and roll onto such a tiny platter. Sweet Times Vol. 6 is the latest installment in an apparently ongoing series of seven-inchers curated by Who Can You Trust? Records, and in the span of a barely-started-before-it’s-over 11 minutes, it brings four bands who sound like they’re in the process of heralding a new movement in underground heavy. Consider, if you will, the punks.

But not like the pop-punkers. Consider the early punk and hardcore. Consider young Black Flag and the semi-metallized, bass-present push of earliest C.O.C. That’s what Oakland’s Dealer would seem to be after with “Casino,” while their side A compatriots Char-Man go full-on Ramones with the jangly and uptempo “Freak Rock.” Australia finds representation in the relative sprawl of Hydromedusa‘s three-and-a-half-minute “Falco,” which is more modern in production, but still derives from a blend of heavy rock and classic thrust and arrives topped with biting vocals, and side B caps with the garage-fueled careening of Zig Zags, whose raw chorus in “Blood” reminds of Death Alley tapping into Motörhead, but is even meaner and presented as raw as can be. In other words, it sounds awesome.

Is a stage being set for a new wave of retro punk? Maybe the lessons of groups like Off! are beginning to take hold and some of those bands who a few years back might’ve hit into shuffling early ’70s boogie have now moved onto to what followed and ultimately displaced the initial heavy rock movement. Think ’76-’81 instead of ’70-’74, and you might get a pretty good idea where Sweet Times Vol. 6 is coming from in terms of style.

You can hear a track premiere for Dealer‘s “Casino” at the bottom of this post to get yourself acquainted, and the 7″ is available to order from Who Can You Trust? Records now.

Dig in:

sweet times vol 6

Sweet Times Vol. 6 – Dealer, Char-Man, Hydromedusa & Zig Zags

Ok… you can finally order your very own copy of this greasy, filled to the bursting point, barrel of rock ‘n’ roll goodness!!

Four shiny new tracks by Dealer, Char-Man, Hydromedusa and Zig Zags!!! …WHAT ELSE TO SAY ?!

A raw diamond… a glimmer of light among today’s vintage/retro/nostalgia rock and roll mediocrity… the silver lining you needed more than anything else in your life… maybe that one thing that gives you hope for a brighter future and keeps you going?!

GIVE IT A TRY…

At least you’ll have a sweet time – ANY TIME !!!

This time the artwork has been handled by the one and only Jesse California and i can’t wait to hold the physical thing in my hands, as the whole package is going to look more than sweet!

„SWEET TIMES – Volume 6“ features brand new recordings by Dealer (former Sexless) from Oakland, California… (If you haven’t yet, go and check out their full-length on Wicked World Records!!), Char-Man (feat. Zarian from Lecherous Gaze on vocals!), Hydromedusa (the self-described Rock & Roll parasites from of Adelaide, South Australia!) and (if that wasn’t enough already…) there’s also a shiny new ripper from Zig Zags that’ll find you senseless after the last note, hidden in the deepest corner of the run-out groove!!! OH MY…

http://whocanyoutrustrec.bigcartel.com/product/va-sweet-times-volume-6-7-vinyl
https://www.facebook.com/Who-Can-You-Trust-Records-187406787966906/
https://whocanyoutrustrec.wordpress.com/

Tags: , , , , , , ,

audiObelisk Transmission 061

Posted in Podcasts on May 15th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

the obelisk podcast 61

Click Here to Download

 

Yes! A new podcast! Are you stoked? I’m stoked. If you’re not, you will be when you look at the list of bands included. In any case, let’s be stoked together, because rock and roll, and heavy psych and good music and, well, yeah. That’s pretty much stuff to be stoked about. It’s been absurdly long since the last time we did one of these. Too long. I don’t really have an excuse other than… gainful employment? Don’t worry, though. That’ll be over soon enough. Then it’ll be podcasts out the ass.

There’s some killer goods here though. Yeah, I decided to do a “Yeti” double-shot with Green Yeti into Telekinetic Yeti. That’s my version of me being clever. But both bands are righteous, and if you haven’t heard the Savanah record, or that new Tia Carrera jam, or the Cachemira or Big Kizz or Yagow or Vokonis or the Elder — oh hell, frickin’ all of it — it’s worth your time. That Emil Amos track just premiered the other day and I think will surprise a lot of people, and I liked the way it paired with the dark neofolk of Hermitess. And of course we get trippy in the second hour, as is the custom around here. But first a moment of prog clarity from the aforementioned Elder. That’s a good time as well.

As always, I hope you enjoy.

Track details follow:

First Hour:

0:00:00 Vokonis, “The Sunken Djinn” from The Sunken Djinn
0:06:47 Tia Carrera, “Laid Back (Frontside Rock ‘n’ Roll)” from Laid Back (Frontside Rock ‘n’ Roll)
0:16:33 Supersonic Blues, “Supersonic Blues Theme” from Supersonic Blues Theme / Curses on My Soul
0:19:28 Emil Amos, “Elements Cycling” from Filmmusik
0:22:28 Hermitess, “Blood Moon” from Hermitess
0:26:24 Savanah, “Mind” from The Healer
0:34:22 Yagow, “Non-Contractual” from Yagow
0:42:35 Big Kizz, “Eye on You” from Eye on You
0:45:53 Cachemira, “Jungla” from Jungla
0:52:05 Green Yeti, “Black Planets (Part 2)” from Desert Show
0:58:02 Telekinetic Yeti, “Stoned and Feathered” from Abominable

Second Hour:

1:02:10 Elder, “The Falling Veil” from Reflections of a Floating World
1:13:20 Riff Fist, “King Tide” from King Tide
1:24:15 Cavra, “Montaña” from Cavra
1:39:18 Causa Sui, “A Love Supreme” from Live in Copenhagen

Total running time: 1:55:53

 

Thank you for listening.

Download audiObelisk Transmission 061

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Supersonic Blues Release Debut Single Supersonic Blues Theme / Curses on My Soul

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 4th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

supersonic blues Photo-Ruud-Aarbodem

Keen observers of things rock and/or roll should note the Motorwolf namedrop when it comes to Den Haag newcomer trio Supersonic Blues. That studio, headed by Guy Tavares, also of Orange Sunshine, has been responsible for some of the finest in raw-energy heavy/garage traditionalism, from Tavares‘ own outfit and a slew of others, including Death Alley, who discussed the influence recording there had on them back in our 2015 interview. That’s by no means the be-all-end-all of Supersonic Blues‘ appeal, as the two cuts on their debut single showcase, but it definitely lets you know they have their collective head screwed on right when it comes to choosing with whom to work.

The 7″ release, Supersonic Blues Theme / Curses on My Soul is out now via respected purveyor Who Can You Trust? Records, and you can and should take the time to stream both tracks below, especially if you’d like a quick lesson in how something can sound so laid back and raucous at the same time. It’s the vibe, man. The vibe. The vibe. The vibe.

Dig it:

supersonic-blues-supersonic-blues-theme

SUPERSONIC BLUES – ‘SUPERSONIC BLUES THEME / CURSES ON MY SOUL’ 7″ VINYL

Emerging from the same musical underground that spawned the classic acid blues rock of Orange Sunshine, a new generation on the rise is bringing us the first offering of SUPERSONIC BLUES, a young band from The Hague. Inspired by the late 60s/early 70s blues, funk and soul, there’s no doubt they had to take the shortest and best way into the halls of Motorwolf Studios, The Hague, led by Guy Tavares of Orange Sunshine / Motorwolf Records.

What came out is a debut of old school garage blues and fuzzy acid rock in it’s perfect tonal and physical form! This is the type music you only want to listen to on your record player …nowhere else.

With the mutual love for obscure, groovy, heavy and fuzzed out music from the 1960s and 70s, soon Gianni and Timothy found themselves spinning their record collection on The Hague’s underground radio station, Radio Tonka. With the addition of drummer Lennart Jansen, Supersonic Blues was a fact. Expect some nice jams, inspired by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Blue Cheer, the MC5, Cream and even some hints of funk and soul music! Right on!

Edition of 400 copies on black vinyl.

Tracklisting:
1. Supersonic Blues Theme 03:01
2. Curses On My Soul 05:01

Supersonic Blues is:
Lennart (drums)
Gianni (bass)
Timothy (guitar)

https://www.facebook.com/supersonicblues/
http://whocanyoutrustrec.bigcartel.com/product/supersonic-blues-supersonic-blues-theme-curses-on-my-soul-7-Vinyl
https://whocanyoutrustrec.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Who-Can-You-Trust-Records-187406787966906/

Supersonic Blues, Supersonic Blues Theme / Curses on My Soul (2017)

Tags: , , , , ,

Ragged Barracudas & Pushy, Split LP: Free Range Boogie (Plus Track Premieres)

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on June 16th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

ragged barracudas pushy split

[Click play above to stream Ragged Barracudas’ ‘Tables Turn’ and Pushy’s ‘Salem Man.’ Their split LP is out mid-July and available now to preorder.]

There’s just nothing to argue with here. German trio Ragged Barracudas and Portland, Oregon’s Pushy team up for a split 12″ on Who Can You Trust? Records, four tracks apiece on two sides obviously divided by band, three originals and one cover each. Let the boogie ensue. It is neither act’s first time working with the label. Ragged Barracudas released a 7″ (review here) early in 2014 and took part in the latest installment of the imprint’s Sweet Times series of four-way split singles, Sweet Times Vol. 5. Pushy, meanwhile, featured on Sweet Times Vol. 4 last year, and as Ragged Barracudas drummer/vocalist Christian Dräger doubles as the head of Who Can You Trust? and Pushy guitarist/vocalist Adam Burke has done artwork for label releases from Pastor and the aforementioned Sweet Times Vol. 4, it’s safe to assume nobody on one side is a stranger to the other.

Those connections come hand-in-hand with a similarity of sonic mindset, both acts embroiled in a modernization of ’70s impulses across the LP’s engaging 33-minute span. They share a lack of pretense in their methods and the circumstance that this 12″ platter is the most substantive release to-date from each of them, Pushy having offered up a digital-only demo in 2014 (review here) and a couple other odds and ends on Bandcamp in addition to the above-mentioned. Both acts sound formative, purposefully, but assured of what they’re trying to accomplish and how they want to get to the natural, classic atmosphere that ultimately unites them and makes the record flow between its two sides.

In the case of Ragged Barracudas, no doubt at least partial credit should go to Guy Tavares. Also the drummer/vocalist of Orange SunshineTavares holds the reins on Motorwolf Studios in Den Haag, the Netherlands, and Ragged Barracudas‘ output benefits greatly from the sweat-soaked rawness of the “Motorwolf sound” on their four songs, “Burning” (on which Tavares also contributes ghungroo bells), “Tables Turn,” “Walking on My Grave” (a Dead Moon cover) and “Conclusions.” With a strong sense of live performance and a down-to-business feel in the lightly blown-out vocals of Dräger, joined in the band by guitarist Janik Ruß and bassist Tom WeitenRagged Barracudas manage to keep a friendly edge to a successfully dangerous execution.

ragged barracudas pushy split ad

Some of that might be pacing. “Burning” and “Walking on My Grave” both move at a pretty decent clip, but “Tables Turn” — a highlight of the release and the longest cut on it at six minutes flat — and “Conclusions” contrast with a more patient take. This direct back and forth, particularly over the condensed 17-minute runtime of the vinyl’s side A, sets up a flow that carries the listener along with the changes the band is making. I don’t know the circumstances of the recording exactly, but if it wasn’t completely live I’d guess it was at least mostly so, and whether it’s the almost-gothabilly ride cymbal on “Walking on My Grave” or the melancholic rumble of “Conclusions,” Ragged Barracudas show themselves as having a firm grip on their sound and a growing songwriting process that sounds ready for exploration on a debut full-length.

That’s something else they have in common with Pushy, who sound like the swing-fueled next step the Pacific Northwest has been waiting for since Portland arrived on the heavy rock map seven-plus years ago. They’re not the only band from what’s become a capitol of US heavy to take a bite out of the ’70s grooves of ZZ Top and James Gang, but they do it exceedingly well, whether it’s the start-stop bass groove from Neal Munson on “Zionara” or the sleaze in Burke‘s vocals on side-opener “In My Mouth.”

Blue Cheer are a major factor in that song, and not to its detriment, as BurkeMunson, guitarist Ron Wesley and drummer Travis Claw set themselves up for the funky turn that “I Need More Time” — a cover of The Meters — brings, twisting guitars leading the way into a resounding hook before twin-leads meet up for a scathingly bluesy apex that shifts back into the chorus to finish out. “Salem Man” follows with an admirably believable “rama-lam-bam-bam” worked into its lyrics, and as Pushy‘s tracks are arranged shortest to longest, as they make their move toward “Zionara” to finish out, they get correspondingly bolder, so that the final nod of “Zionara” is not only its own payoff but that also for the band’s entire portion, played out over a lean, deceptively-efficient 15 minutes.

Like I said at the outset, there’s just nothing to argue with here. In performance and songwriting, Ragged Barracudas and Pushy complement each other fluidly. It’s telling that the split’s cover artwork — presumably by Burke — is on what looks like reclaimed wood from an old barn, since both bands have an underlying element of the organic to their approach as well. In accord with that, their combined output sounds ready to stand the test of time.

Ragged Barracudas on Thee Facebooks

Ragged Barracudas on Bandcamp

Pushy on Thee Facebooks

Pushy on Bandcamp

Ragged Barracudas & Pushy split preorder

Who Can You Trust? Records on Bandcamp

Tags: , , , , , , ,