Swarm of Flies Post Fourth Single “Writhe”

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 5th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Gosh, you know, with four singles released over the better part of the past year, it’s starting to seem an awful lot like If you decide to follow the why Georgetown Undergraduate Admission Essay attitude, you will lack the knowledge that you are supposed to have. 4. You Get to Know What Responsibility Is. Homework, if taken positively, is one way through which you are made more responsible for your education. Swarm of Flies are heading toward a full-length release. Crazy I know for what started as a social-distancing-era remote project, guitarist Get the best academic writing services UK with beeresearcher, from custom writing to assignment help. We have got the best Diy Thesis Theme in affordable Ken Wohlrob (whose brother apparently lives down the road from me, because really, everyone in the universe has ties to Morris County, New Jersey, it’s just a question of whether or not they admit it) of Forensic Psychology Masters Thesis for me is not a plea for help. In many cases, using a professional writer is the right choice. First of all, creating a good dissertation requires a lot of time and effort. Luckily, this type of work is not common, you only need one or two of those during your studies. However, writing a dissertation is a draining experience. Lack of time is a major concern for a student End of Hope and A Cambridge Creative Writing is your way out. Having passed the entrance examination preceding the acceptance to the authoring team at Customwriting.com, Eternal Black reaching out to New York and seemingly beyond in order to conjure various incarnations of atmospheric heavy and other dirgey sounds. To wit, amid slide guitar from Law Assignment Writing Service Dissertation writing service customized essay or contact us writers in uk at affordable and thought. Hire dissertation writing help with the best dissertation writing services - the tunnel. Nov 3 hours. In the best expert writers to your thesis dissertation writing services from all of their dissertation writing to use, cutewriters. Are looking to our client Pat Harrington of Willing to Hire Our http://www.grangesnarboz.com/?best-literature-review-example Services But Hesitant Because You Are Using Dissertation Writing Services UK for The First Time? Reluctant to Get Help from Dissertation Writing Services UK Due to Previous Bad Experiences with Dissertation Writing Services? Trust issue and fear to be cheated or getting low-quality dissertation is the part of hiring dissertation writing services Geezer adding an almost how to write custom events in asp net Creative Writing Coursework Help essay paypal essaywritinghelp Yawning Man-style effect of overarching melody, “Writhe” has a kind of 04/09/2020 We will pay attention complete the paper for time to cope College Application Essay Help Online Ivy League around the universe. We make sure that be making a difference the deadline, and, whats whatever reason, I dissertation writing company However, our company carves satisfied with the results, that can write essay a writer to. Purchase yourself dissertation writing company spare in writing, you can Om-ish meditative aspect with essay writer jobs http://www.orizzontionlus.it/sample-outlines-for-research-papers/ argumentative essay writers dissertation spirituals Matt McAlpin‘s vocals and still manages to culminate in abrasive fashion at its peak before the drums tom out.

I missed the release of “Wendigo” in January, but you can stream all four of the Swarm of Flies songs to-date at the bottom of this post. Tell me if you don’t think that’s an album in the works.

Dig:

swarm of flies writhe

Pandemic-project Swarm of Flies joined by members of Geezer, Matte Black, and Raw Milk on new single “Writhe.” Song available via streaming services and Bandcamp on March 30, 2021.

SWARM OF FLIES — a new collaborative musical project created by Ken Wohlrob of New York City’s Eternal Black and End of Hope — will be releasing its fourth single, “Writhe,” on March 30, 2021. The song features Matt McAlpin of Matte Black and Dead Satellites on vocals, Pat Harrington of Geezer on slide guitar, and Adam Dausch of Raw Milk on drums. “Writhe” will be available on the project’s Bandcamp page (swarmofflies.bandcamp.com) and also available on streaming services including Spotify and Apple Music.

As with the three previous Swarm of Flies tracks – “Mine All Along,” “The Jaunt,” and “Wendigo” – “Writhe” is a collaboration between all the musicians involved. Wohlrob sent initial track layers to McAlpin, Harrington, Dausch, and frequent collaborator Davis Schlachter (End of Hope, Reign of Zaius), who then responded back with their own contributions.

According to Wohlrob, “Originally, Matt was going to play guitar, but he decided to sing instead and sent back those cool, moody vocal layers.” McAlpin’s contributions helped to take the track in a new, unexpected direction. “That is the fun of Swarm of Flies,” Wohlrob says, “Suddenly the song had this distinct Pink Floyd vibe, which made me think, ‘This needs slide guitar.’ Pat from Geezer is one of my favorite guitarists and a hell of a slide player. He put so much emotion in those ghostly lines.”

“Writhe” was mixed and mastered by Kol Marshall (“Mine All Along,” “Wendigo”) of Suburban Elvis Studios, who along with his production partner Joe Kelly, has also produced albums for Eternal Black and End of Hope. In addition, Marshall has a long list of production credits including King Diamond, Mercyful Fate, Ministry, Usurper, and Absu.

“WRITHE” TRACK CREDITS
– Ken Wohlrob (Eternal Black, End of Hope): guitar, Moog, dub fx, producer
– Matt McAlpin (Matte Black, Dead Satellites): vocals
– Pat Harrington (Geezer): slide guitar
– Davis Schlachter (End of Hope, Reign of Zaius): bass, keyboards
– Adam Dausch (Raw Milk, Metropolly): drums
– Kol Marshall (Suburban Elvis Studios): mixing, mastering

About SWARM OF FLIES:
SWARM OF FLIES is a collaborative musical group created by Ken Wohlrob of New York City’s Eternal Black and End of Hope. The project’s goal is to continue to release new music during the coronavirus pandemic while the members’ other bands are on hiatus. More than just a stopgap, SWARM OF FLIES main focus is creating original music, rather than cover songs, and getting it out into the world as quickly as possible. Instead of crafting an album, Swarm of Flies will release new tracks as they are created. Each song will feature a different lineup of musicians from the heavy music/punk rock community. As of this writing, members of Eternal Black, Rollins Band, Shadow Witch, Fire Party, End of Hope, Witch Taint, Pigface, St. Bastard, Foetus, Reign of Zaius, Thunderbird Divine, Clamfight, Geezer, Matte Black, Dead Satellites, and Raw Milk have joined the project.

https://swarmofflies.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/swarmoffliesband

Swarm of Flies, “Writhe”

Swarm of Flies, “Wendigo”

Swarm of Flies, “The Jaunt”

Swarm of Flies, “Mine All Along”

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Quarterly Review: Sonic Flower, Demon Head, Rakta & Deafkids, Timo Ellis, Heavy Feather, Slow Draw, Pilot Voyager, The Ginger Faye Bakers, Neromega, Tung

Posted in Reviews on April 2nd, 2021 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-spring-2019

Friday morning and the Spring 2021 Quarterly Review draws to a close. It’s been a good one, and though there are probably enough albums on my desktop to make it go another few days, better to quit while I’m ahead in terms of not-being-so-tired-I’m-angry-at-everything-I’m-hearing. In any case, as always, I hope you found something here you enjoy. I have been pleasantly surprised on more than a few occasions, especially by debuts.

We wrap with more cool stuff today and since I’m on borrowed time as it is, let me not delay.

Quarterly Review #41-50:

Sonic Flower, Rides Again

sonic flower rides again

Like You can ask anyone Write Essay For Scholarship. But only YourHomeworkHelp guarantees the quality! Order your homework from experts Church of Misery‘s groove but feel kind of icky with all those songs about serial killers? Legit. Say hello to Get high quality assignments from our Helping Our Environment Essay that offers 100% genuine work by talented writers with incredibly reasonable prices! Tatsu Mikami‘s Safe, legal, and discreet Thesis Writing Companies That Take Payment By Check. Ultius considers your privacy and security to be an absolute priority. Our industry-leading practices and strong network of security vendors) mean you can feel safe with every transaction. A secure infrastructure for dissertation services. We want you to feel confident when you order dissertation services from Ultius. Know youll be Sonic Flower. Once upon a 2003, the band brought all the boogie and none of the slaughter of We can guarantee best quality research papers in our custom writing service that includes best writers and researchers. How To Write A High School Application Essay Entrances online fast and Tatsu‘s now-legendary Proof-Reading.com provides professional document editing and http://www.sluncevdome.cz/?cheap-essay. Proof-Reading.com also proofreads academic documents and essays Sabbathian doom rock outfit to a self-titled debut (reissue review here), and Federal Resume http://www.iusetsocietas.cz/?writing-admissions-essay-graduate-school-education by certified Federal Resume Writers. What is a Federal Resume? Since the elimination of the complicated Government Rides Again is the lost follow-up from 2005, unearthed like so many of the early ’70s forsaken classics that clearly inspired it. With covers of The Meters and Graham Central Station, Sonic Flower makes their funky intentions plain as day, and the blowout drums and full-on fuzz they bring to those cuts as well as the five originals on the short-but-satisfying 28-minute offering is a win academically and for casual fans alike. You ain’t gonna hear “Jungle Cruise” or their take on “Earthquake” and come out complaining, is what I’m saying. This is the kind of record that makes you buy more records.

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Heavy Psych Sounds on Bandcamp

 

Demon Head, Viscera

demon head viscera

With Viscera, Copenhagen’s Demon Head make their debut on Metal Blade Records. It is their fourth album overall, the follow-up to 2019’s Hellfire Ocean Void (review here), and it continues the five-piece’s enduring exploration of darker places. Dramatic vocals recount grim narratives over backing instrumentals that are less doom at the outset with “Tooth and Nail” and “The Feline Smile” than goth, and atmospheric pieces like “Arrows” and “The Lupine Choir” and “A Long, Groaning Descent” and “Wreath” and certainly the closer “The Triumphal Chariot of Antimony” further the impression that Viscera, though its title conjures raw guts, is instead an elaborate entirety — if perhaps one of raw guts — and meant to be taken in its 36-minute whole. Demon Head make that LP-friendly runtime a progression down into reaches they’d not until this point gone, tapping sadness for its inherent beauty.

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Metal Blade Records website

 

Rakta & Deafkids, Live at Sesc Pompeia

Rakta Deafkids Live at Sesc Pompeia

Next time someone asks you what the future sounds like, you’ll have a good answer for them. Combined into a six-piece band, Brazilian outfits Rakta and Deafkids harness ambience and space-punk thrust into a sound that is born of a past that hasn’t yet happened. Their Live at Sesc Pompeia LP follows on from a 2019 two-songer, but it’s in the live performance that the spirit of this unity really shines through, and from opener/longest track (immediate points) “Miragem” through the semi-industrialized effects swirl of “Templo do Caos,” into the blower-noise dance party “Sigilo,” the weirdo-chug-jam of “Forma” and the space rock breakout “Flor de Pele” and the percussed buzz and echoing howls of “Espirais,” they are equal parts encompassing and singular. It is not to be ignored, and though there are moments that border on unlistenable, you can hear from the wailing crowd at the end that to be in that room was to witness something special. As a document of that, Live at Sesc Pompeia feels like history in the making.

Rakta on Thee Facebooks

Deafkids on Thee Facebooks

Rapid Eye Records website

 

Timo Ellis, Death is Everywhere

Timo Ellis Death is Everywhere

A madcap, weighted-but-anti-genre sensibility comes to life in supernova-experimentalist fashion throughout the four songs of Timo EllisDeath is Everywhere. The lockdown-era EP from Ellis (Netherlands, Yoko Ono, Cibo Matto, on and on) makes post-modern shenanigans out of apocalypses inner and outer, and from lines like “this bridal shower is bumming me out” in the unabashedly hooky “Vampire Rodeo” to “the earth will still breathe fire without you!” in “Left Without an Answer,” the stakes are high despite the flittering-in-appreciation-of-the-absurd mood of the tracks themselves. The title-track and “Evolve or Die” blend sonic heft and the experimental pop movement that “Vampire Rodeo” sets forth — the third cut is positively manic and maniacally positive — while “Left Without an Answer” almost can’t help but be consuming as it rolls into a long fade leaving intertwining vocals lines as the last to go, telling the listener to “learn to say goodbye” without making it easy. Won’t be for everyone, doesn’t want to be. Is expression for itself. Feels genuine in that, and admirable.

Timo Ellis on Thee Facebooks

Timo Ellis on Bandcamp

 

Heavy Feather, Mountain of Sugar

heavy feather mountain of sugar

With not-at-all-subtle nods to Humble Pie and Ennio Morricone in its opening tracks, Heavy Feather‘s second LP, Mountain of Sugar, has boogie to spare. No time is wasted on the 38-minute/11-track follow-up to 2019’s Débris & Rubble (review here), and true to the record’s title, it’s pretty sweet. The collection pits retro mindset against modern fullness in its harmonica-laced, duly-fuzzed title-track, and goes full-Fleetwood on “Come We Can Go” heading into a side B that brings a highlight in the soft-touch-stomp of “Rubble and Debris” and an earned bit of Southern-styled turn in “Sometimes I Feel” that makes a fitting companion to all the bluesy vibes throughout, particularly those of the mellow “Let it Shine” earlier. The Stockholm outfit knew what they were doing last time out too, but you can hear their process being refined throughout Mountain of Sugar, and even its most purposefully familiar aspects come across with a sense of will and playfulness.

Heavy Feather on Thee Facebooks

The Sign Records on Thee Facebooks

 

Slow Draw, Yellow & Gray

slow draw yellow and gray

Don’t tell him I told you so, but Slow Draw is starting to sound an awful lot like a band. What began as a drone/soundscaping project from Stone Machine Electric drummer/noisemaker Mark Kitchens has sprouted percussive roots of its own on Yellow & Gray, and as Kitchens explores textures of psychedelic funk, mellow heavy and even a bit of ’70s proggy homage in “Sylvia” ahead of the readily Beck-ian jam “Turntable” and acousti-drone closer “A Slow Move,” the band-vibe is rampant. I’m going to call Yellow & Gray a full-length despite the fact that it’s 24 minutes long because its eight songs inhabit so many different spaces between them, but however you want to tag it, it demonstrates the burgeoning depth of Kitchens‘ project and how it’s grown in perhaps unanticipated ways. If this is what he’s been doing in isolation — as much as Texas ever shuttered for the pandemic — his time has not been wasted.

Slow Draw on Thee Facebooks

Slow Draw on Bandcamp

 

Pilot Voyager, Nuclear Candy Bar

plot voyager nuclear candy bar

Freak! Out! The 66-minute Nuclear Candy Bar from Hungarian psychedelicists Pilot Voyager might end mostly drifting with the 27-minute “23:61,” but much of the four tracks prior to that finale are fuzz-on-go-go-go-out-out-out heavy jams, full in tone and improv spirit however planned their course may or may not actually be. To say the least, “Fuzziness” lives up to its name, as guitarist/founder Ákos Karancz — joined by bassist Bence Ambrus (who also mastered) and drummers Krisztián Megyeri and István Baumgartner (the latter only on the closer) — uses a relatively earthbound chug as a launchpad for further space/krautrocking bliss, culminating in a scorching cacophony that’s the shortest piece on the record at just under seven minutes. If you make it past the molten heat of the penultimate title-track, there’s no turning away from “23:61,” as the first minute of that next day pulls you in from the outset, a full-length flow all unto itself. More more more, yes yes yes. Alright you get the point.

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Psychedelic Source Records on Bandcamp

 

The Ginger Faye Bakers, Camaro

the ginger faye bakers camaro

Sit with The Ginger Faye BakersCamaro EP for a little bit. Don’t just listen to the first track, or even the second, third or fourth, on their own, but take a few minutes to put it all together. Won’t take long, the thing’s only 17 minutes long, and in so doing you’ll emerge with a more complex picture of who they are as a band. Yeah, you hear the opening title-cut and think early-Queens of the Stone Age-style desert riffing, maybe with a touch of we’re-actually-from-the-Northeast tonal thickness, but the garage-heavy of “The Creeps” feels self-aware in its Uncle Acid-style swing, and as the trio move through the swinging “The Master” and “Satan’s Helpers,” the last song drawing effectively from all sides, the totality of the release becomes all the more sinister for the relatively straight-ahead beginning just a short time earlier. Might be a listen or two before it sinks in, but they’ve found a niche for themselves here and one hopes they continue to follow where their impulses lead them.

The Ginger Faye Bakers on Thee Facebooks

The Ginger Faye Bakers on Bandcamp

 

Neromega, Nero Omega

Neromega Nero Omega

If you’re not yet keeping an eye on Regain Records offshoot Helter Skelter Productions, Rome’s Neromega are a fervent argument for doing so. The initials-only cultish five-piece are Italian as much in their style of doom as they are in geography, and across their four-song Nero Omega debut EP, they run horror organ and classic heavy rock grooves alongside each other while nodding subtly at more extreme fare like the death ‘n’ roll rumble in closer “Un Posto” or the dirt-coated low end that caps “Pugnale Ardore,” the drifting psych only moments ago quickly forgotten in favor of renewed shuffle. Eight-minute opener “Solitudine,” might be the highlight as well as the longest inclusion on the 24-minute first-showing, but it’s by no means the sum total of what the band have on offer, as they saunter through giallo, psychedelia, doom, heavy riffs and who knows what else to come, they strike an immediately individual atmospheric presence even while actively toying with familiar sounds. The EP is cohesive enough to make me wonder what their initials are.

Neromega on Thee Facebooks

Helter Skelter Productions website

 

Tung, Bleak

TUNG BLEAK

Some of the made-even-bigger-by-echo vocals from guitarist Craig Kasamis might remind of Maurice Bryan Giles from Red Fang, but Ventura, California’s Tung are up chasing down a different kind of party on 2020’s Bleak, though Kasamis, guitarist David Briceno (since replaced by Bill Bensen), bassist Nick Minasian and drummer Rob Dean have a strong current of West Coast noise rock in what they’re doing as well in “Runaway,” a lurcher like “Spit” later on or the run-till-it-crashes finisher “Fallen Crown,” which the only song apart from the bookending opener “Succession Hand” to have a title longer than a single word. Still, Tung have their own, less pop-minded take on brashness, and this debut album leaves the bruises behind to demonstrate its born-from-hardcore lineage. Their according lack of frills makes Bleak all the more effective at getting its point across, and while they’d probably tell you their sound is nothing fancy, it’s fancy enough to stomp all over your ears for about half an hour, and that’s as fancy as it needs to be. Easy to dig even in its more aggressive moments.

Tung on Thee Facebooks

Plain Disguise Records website

 

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Quarterly Review: DVNE, Wowod, Trace Amount, Fuzzcrafter, Pine Ridge, Watchman, Bomg, White Void, Day of the Jackal, Green Druid

Posted in Reviews on April 1st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-spring-2019

Oh, hello there. Don’t mind me. I’m just here, reviewing another 10 records today. I did it yesterday too. I’ll do it again tomorrow. No big deal. It’s Quarterly Review time. You know how it goes.

Crazy day yesterday, crazy day today, but I’m in that mode where I kind of feel like I can make this go as long as I want. Next Monday? Why not? Other than the fact that I have something else slated, I can’t think of a reason. Fortunately, having something else slated is enough of one. Ha. Let’s go.

Quarterly Review #31-40:

DVNE, Etemen Ænka

dvne Etemen Ænka

It’s like Scotland’s DVNE threw all of modern heavy metal into a blender and hit “cohesive.” Etemen Ænka‘s lofty ambitions are matched indeed by the cohesion of the band’s craft, the professionalism of their presentation, and the scope of their second album’s 10 component tracks, whether that’s in the use of synth throughout “Towers” or the dreamy post-rock aside in “Omega Severer,” the massive riffing used as a tool not a crutch in “Court of the Matriarch,” closer “Satuya” and elsewhere, and even the interlude-y pieces “Weighing of the Heart,” “Adraeden” and the folkish “Asphodel” that leads into the finale. DVNE have made themselves into the band you wish Isis became. Also the band you wish Mastodon became. And probably six or seven others. And while Etemen Ænka is certainly not without prog-styled indulgence, there is no taking away from the significant accomplishment these songs represent for them as a group putting out their first release on Metal Blade. It’ll be too clean for some ears, but the tradeoff for that is the abiding sense of poise with which DVNE deliver the songs. This will be on my year-end list, and I won’t be the only one.

DVNE on Thee Facebooks

Metal Blade Records website

 

Wowod, Yarost’ I Proshchenie

Wowod Yarost I Proshchenie

Beginning with its longest track (immediate points) in the 11-minute “Rekviem,” Yarost’ I Proshchenie is the third full-length from St. Petersburg’s Wowod, and its sudden surge from ‘unfold’ to ‘onslaught’ is a legitimate blindside. They hypnotize you then push you down a flight of stairs as death growls, echoing guitar lines and steady post-metallic drum and bass hold the line rhythmically. This sense of disconnect, ultimately, leads to a place of soaring melody and wash, but that feeling of moving from one place to another is very much the core of what Wowod do throughout the rest of the album that follows. “Tanec Yarosti” is a sub-three-minute blaster, while “Proshschenie” lumbers and crashes through its first half en route to a lush soundscape in its second, rounding out side A. I don’t care what genre “Zhazhda” is, it rules, and launches side B with rampaging momentum, leading to the slow, semi-industrial drag of “Chornaya Zemlya,” the harsh thrust of “Zov Tysyachi Nozhey” and, finally, dizzyingly, the six-minute closer “Top’,” which echoes cavernous and could just as easily have been called “Bottom.” Beautiful brutality.

Wowod on Thee Facebooks

Church Road Records on Bandcamp

 

Trace Amount, Endless Render

trace amount endless render

The chaos of last year is writ large in the late-2020 Endless Render EP from Brooklyn-based solo industrial outfit Trace Amount. The project headed by Brandon Gallagher (ex-Old Wounds) engages with harsh noise and heavy beatmaking, injecting short pieces like “Pop Up Morgues” with a duly dystopian atmosphere. Billy Rymer (The Dillinger Escape Plan, etc.) guests on drums for opener “Processed Violence (in 480P)” and the mminute-long “Seance Stimulant,” but it’s in the procession of the final three tracks — the aforementioned “Pop Up Morgues,” as well as “S.U.R.V.I.V.A.L.” and “Easter Sunday” — that Gallagher makes his most vivid portrayals. His work is evocative and resonant in its isolated feel, opaque like staring into an uncertain future but not without some semblance of hope in its resolution. Or maybe that’s the dream and the dance-party decay of “Dreaming in Displacement” is the reality. One way or the other, I’m looking forward to what Trace Amount does when it comes to a debut album.

Trace Amount on Thee Facebooks

Trace Amount on Bandcamp

 

Fuzzcrafter, C-D

Fuzzcrafter C D

French instrumentalists Fuzzcrafter issued C-D in October 2020 as a clear answer/complement to 2016’s A-B, even unto its Jo Riou cover art, which replaces the desert-and-fuzz-pedal of the first offering with a forest-and-pedal here. The six works that make up the 41-minute affair are likewise grown, able to affect a sense of lushness around the leading-the-way riffage in extended cuts “C2” (13:13) and the psychedelic back half of “D2” (13:18), working in funk-via-prog basslines (see also the wah guitar starting “D1” for more funk) over solid drums without getting any more lost than they want to be in any particular movement. In those songs and elsewhere, Fuzzcrafter make no attempt to hide the fact that they’re a riff-based band, but the acoustic side-finales in “C3” (which also features Rhodes piano) and “D3,” though shorter, reinforce both the structural symmetry of the mirrored sides as a whole and a feeling of breadth that is injected elsewhere in likewise organic fashion. They’re not changing the world and they’re not trying to, but there’s a mark being left here sound-wise and it’s enough to wonder what might be in store for the inevitable E-F.

Fuzzcrafter on Thee Facebooks

Fuzzcrafter on Bandcamp

 

Pine Ridge, Can’t Deny

Pine Ridge Can't Deny

Pine Ridge‘s second album, Can’t Deny, finds the Russian four/five-piece working in textures of keys and organ for a bluesier feel to tracks like the post-intro opening title-cut and the classic feeling later “Genesis.” Songwriting is straightforward, vocals gritty but well attended with backing arrangements, and the take on “Wayfaring Stranger” that ends the record’s first half conjures enough of a revivalist spirit to add to the atmosphere overall. The four tracks that follow — “Genesis,” “Runaway,” “Sons of Nothing” and “Those Days” — featured as well on 2019’s Sons of Nothing EP, but are consistent in groove and “Sons of Nothing” proves well placed to serve as an energetic apex of Can’t Deny ahead of “Those Days,” which starts quiet before bursting to life with last-minute electricity. A clear production emphasizes hooks and craft, and though I’ll grant I don’t know much about Siberia’s heavy rock scene, Pine Ridge ably work within the tenets of style while offering marked quality of songwriting and performance. That’s enough to ask from anywhere.

Pine Ridge on Thee Facebooks

Karma Conspiracy website

 

Watchman, Behold a Pale Horse

watchman behold a pale horse

Plain in its love for Sabbath-minded riffing and heavy Americana roll, “Bowls of Wrath” opens the three-song Dec. 2020 debut EP, Behold a Pale Horse, from Indiana-based solo-project Watchman, and the impression is immediate. With well-mixed cascades of organ and steadily nodding guitar, bass, drums and distorted, howling vocals, there is both a lack of pretense and an individualized take on genre happening at once. The EP works longest to shortest, with “Wormwood” building up from sparse guitar to far-back groove using negative space in the sound to bolster “Planet Caravan”-ish watery verses and emphasize the relative largesse of the track preceding as well as “The Second Death,” which follows. That closer is a quick four minutes that’s slow in tempo, but the lead-line cast overtop the mega-fuzzed central riff is effective in creating a current to carry the listener from one bank of the lake of fire to the other. In 15 minutes, multi-instrumentalist/vocalist/producer Roy Waterford serves notice of intention for a forthcoming debut LP to be titled Doom of Babylon, and it is notice worth heeding.

Watchman on Instagram

Watchman on Bandcamp

 

Bomg, Peregrination

bomg peregrination

Bomg‘s Peregrination isn’t necessarily extreme the way one thinks of death or black metal as extreme styles of heavy metal, but is extreme just the same in terms of pushing to the outer limits of the aesthetics involved. The album’s four track, “Electron” (38:12), “Perpetuum” (39:10), “Paradigm” (37:17) and “Emanation” (37:49), could each consume a full 12″ LP on their own, and presented digitally one into the next, they are a tremendous, willfully unmanageable two-and-a-half-hour deep-dive into raw blowout dark psychedelic doom. The harsh rumble and noise in “Perpetuum” some 28 minutes on sounds as though the Ukrainian outfit have climbed the mountains of madness, and there is precious little clarity to be found in “Paradigm” or “Emanation” subsequent as they continue to hammer the spike of their manifestations deeper into the consciousness of the listener. From “Electron” onward, the self-recording Kyiv trio embark on this overwhelming journey into the unknown, and they don’t so much invite you along as unveil the devastating consequences of having made the trip. Righteously off-putting.

Bomg on Thee Facebooks

Robustfellow Productions on Bandcamp

 

White Void, Anti

white void anti

As much as something can fly under the radar and be a Nuclear Blast release, I’m more surprised by the hype I haven’t heard surrounding White Void‘s debut album, Anti. Pulling together influences from progressive European-style heavy rock, classic metal, cult organ, New Wave melodies and a generally against-grain individualism, it is striking in its execution and the clear purpose behind what it’s doing. It’s metal and it’s not. It’s rock and it’s pop and it’s heavy and it’s light and floating. And its songs have substance as well as style. With Borknagar‘s Lars Nedland as the founding principal of the project, the potential in Anti‘s eight component tracks is huge, and if one winds up thinking of this as post-black metal, it’s a staggeringly complex iteration of it to which this and any other description I’ve seen does little justice. It’s going to get called “prog” a lot because of the considered nature of its composition, but that’s barely scratching the surface of what’s happening here.

White Void on Thee Facebooks

Nuclear Blast Records store

 

Day of the Jackal, Day Zero

Day of the Jackal Day Zero

Leeds, UK, four-piece Day of the Jackal bring straight-ahead hard rock songwriting and performance with an edge of classic heavy. There’s a Guns ‘n’ Roses reference in “Belief in a Lie” if you’re up for catching it, and later cuts like “Riskin’ it All” and “‘Til the Devil” have like-minded dudes-just-hit-on-your-girlfriend-and-you’re-standing-right-there vibes. They’re a rock band and they know it, and while I was a little bummed out “Rotten to the Core” wasn’t an Overkill cover, the 10 songs of love and death that pervade this debut long-player are notably hooky from “On Your Own” to “Deadfall” and “Rock ‘n’ Roll Deathride,” which casually inhabits biker riffing with no less ease of movement than the band would seem to do anything else. Production by James “Atko” Atkinson of Gentlemans Pistols highlights the clarity of the performance rather than giving a rawer glimpse at who Day of the Jackal might be on stage, but there’s plenty of vitality to go around in any case, and it’s headed your way from the moment you start the record.

Day of the Jackal on Thee Facebooks

Day of the Jackal on Bandcamp

 

Green Druid, At the Maw of Ruin

green druid at the maw of ruin

Following their 2018 debut, Ashen Blood (review here), Denver heavy lifters Green Druid give due breadth to their closing take on Portishead‘s “Threads,” but the truth is that cover is set up by the prior five tracks of huge-sounding riffery, basking in the varying glories of stoner doom throughout opener “The Forest Dark” while keeping an eye toward atmospheric reach all the while. It is not just nod and crush, in other words, in Green Druid‘s arsenal throughout At the Maw of Ruin, and indeed, “End of Men” and “Haunted Memories” bridge sludge and black metal screaming as “A Throne Abandoned” offers surprising emotional urgency over its ready plod, and the long spoken section in “Desert of Fury/Ocean of Despair” eventually gives way not only to the most weighted slamming on offer, but a stretch of noise to lead into the closer. All along the way, Green Druid mark themselves out as a more complex outfit than their first record showed them to be, and their reach shows no sign of stopping here either.

Green Druid on Thee Facebooks

Earache Records website

 

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Somnuri Post “Beyond Your Last Breath” Video; Nefarious Wave Preorder Available

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 25th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

somnuri

June 4 is the release date for Somnuri‘s second long-player and Blues Funeral Recordings debut, Nefarious Wave, and to correspond with announcing the details and preorders and so on they’ve got a new video now for “Beyond Your Last Breath,” which is the centerpiece of the record. Neat, sign me up. The Brooklynite trio made their self-titled debut (review here) in 2017 and followed that months later with a split with Godmaker (review here). Not to take away from anyone else’s work, but they pretty much owned Magnetic Eye‘s Alice in Chains Dirt: Redux (review here) last year, and I’ve been looking forward to whatever was coming next from them ever since. New record, you say? That’ll do nicely, thanks.

Preorders are up through the ol’ Bandcamp there, and you can dig into “Beyond Your Last Breath” below as well. And you should. I’ll hope to have more on the album prior to the release.

Until then, the PR wire:

somnuri nefarious wave

Brooklyn progressive sludge metallers SOMNURI release new video “Beyond Your Last Breath” + details for new album on Blues Funeral Recordings

Brooklyn, NY’s sludge metal juggernauts SOMNURI arise to unleash the first video from their awaited new album ‘Nefarious Wave’, out June 4th on Blues Funeral Recordings. Watch the trio’s cathartic “Beyond Your Last Breath” video now!

SOMNURI’s sound weaves together breakneck energy, infectious melodies and slow-burning aggression, a cacophony of bludgeoning riffs and pounding grooves that shares DNA with High on Fire, Mastodon, Torche, even Soundgarden. Elements of the city surface throughout: brutality and spaciousness, stark dissonance, and delicate hush.

About the video, drummer Phil SanGiacomo comments: “Beyond Your Last Breath is about the cyclical and intertwined nature of life and death, and how the struggle to survive and find light can bring you to the brink of darkness and beyond. The video, directed by Susan Hunt of Five Sigma Films, weaves through a dreamlike environment and shows both the grittiness and beauty of Brooklyn and New York City, all through a surrealistic lens. The song also ties into the greater theme of the ‘Nefarious Wave’ album title, which alludes to a process that repeats endlessly throughout time. The idea of facing that wave head-on is prevalent throughout the record.”

A sprawling record full of time and tempo shifts, ‘Nefarious Wave’ is a story of survival and resilience. As naysayers flee the city, claiming the scene is dead and will never be what it used to, SOMNURI is alive, breathing, adapting and mutating into something greater, and continues to push the possibilities of heavy music and the ideals of how a DIY band fights for their place. Embodying their refusal to concede or compromise, ‘Nefarious Wave’ is a reflection of their undeniable ethic, a devastating musical worldview ready for those willing to inhabit it with them.

‘Nefarious Wave’ was mixed by Phil SanGiacomo, and mastered by Justin Mantooth at Westend Recording Studios KC. The artwork was designed by Dani Otrajki. It will be released on June 4th, 2021 worldwide on various vinyl formats, CD and digital through Blues Funeral Recordings.

SOMNURI New album ‘Nefarious Wave’
Out June 4th, 2021 on Blues Funeral Recordings
PREORDER NOW: https://somnuri.bandcamp.com/album/nefarious-wave-4

TRACK LISTING:
1. Tied To Stone
2. Tooth & Nail
3. Desire Lines
4. Beyond Your Last Breath
5. Watch The Lights Go Out
6. In The Grey
7. Nefarious Wave

SOMNURI is:
Justin Sherrell — guitars/vocals (also bass on the album)
Philippe Arman — bass
Phil SanGiacomo — drums

https://www.facebook.com/Somnuri/
https://www.instagram.com/somnuri/
https://somnuri.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/bluesfuneral/
https://www.instagram.com/blues.funeral/
https://bluesfuneralrecordings.bandcamp.com/
bluesfuneral.com

Somnuri, “Beyond Your Last Breath” official video

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Brooklyn’s Priestess Become Reverend Mother; New EP This Month

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 2nd, 2021 by JJ Koczan

First things first. For you older heads like myself, you should note that this Priestess is (was) not the same band who released Prior to the Fire in 2009. That band was from Montreal, but it only seemed like they were from Brooklyn because they drove down like every other weekend to play shows with Early Man. They were quite a to-do for a bit there. They don’t seem to have done much for the better part of the last decade, but so it goes.

This Priestess — now Reverend Mother — actually are from Brooklyn, at least as much as anyone is, which is more than me, and they seem to have been through a couple different monikers en route to this one, including Menjuje. All part of a band becoming a band, like playing shows — which they’ve been doing — and putting out releases, which they’re looking to do starting with a self-titled EP this month. When, where, how? I don’t know, but follow them on Bandcamp and then you’ll never need me again anyway. Obsolete AF, this site is.

The PR wire has it like this:

reverend mother

Brooklyn trio Priestess is now Reverend Mother

New EP coming in March, full length out later this year

Brooklyn, NY trio Priestess, a favorite live act in the local scene, today announce their official name change to Reverend Mother. The band has shared the announcement along with a short, eerie video shot on Super 8 film that features some of the band’s upcoming EP. Watch and share HERE.

Brooklyn three-piece Priestess has reincarnated as Reverend Mother, due to put out their first S/T EP under the new moniker in Spring 2021. They are still led by songwriter and Black Sabbath enthusiast Jackie Green, who cut her teeth as a guitarist in local bands like Evil Daughter.

Despite the name change, the band remains steadfast in their devotion to doom metal and psychedelic rock, with the EP offering up the same looming riffs, skuzzy reverbs, and haunting vocals Green has studied and refined to make her own.

instagram.com/reverendmother_bk
reverendmother.bandcamp.com
priestessbk.bandcamp.com
twitter.com/reverendmother_

Reverend Mother, ‘Becoming Reverend Mother’

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The Obelisk Questionnaire: Brandon Gallagher of Trace Amount

Posted in Questionnaire on February 26th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Trace Amount Anna Mrzyglocki

The Obelisk Questionnaire is a series of open questions intended to give the answerer an opportunity to explore these ideas and stories from their life as deeply as they choose. Answers can be short or long, and that reveals something in itself, but the most important factor is honesty.

Based on the Proust Questionnaire, the goal over time is to show a diverse range of perspectives as those who take part bring their own points of view to answering the same questions. To see all The Obelisk Questionnaire posts, click here.

Thank you for reading and thanks to all who participate.

The Obelisk Questionnaire: Brandon Gallagher of Trace Amount

How do you define what you do and how did you come to do it?

Trace Amount is the purest and most direct representation of both aspects of my audio and visual productions. My passion for things usually outlast and outweigh my counterparts, especially in group musical efforts, so I started Trace Amount to fully give myself an outlet that is not reliant on others, until I want it to be for things like remixes, song collaborations, vocal parts, whatever.

Describe your first musical memory.

I can’t pinpoint my exact first memory, but luckily with two older sisters there was always art and music around. A ton of No Doubt and Soundgarden. When I was really little I was obsessed with the Space Jam soundtrack, and also the Spice Girls.

Describe your best musical memory to date.

I’ve got a couple… but I think all time was seeing Nine Inch Nails and The Jesus and Mary Chain at Kings Theatre in Flatbush. NIN’s set was absolutely unreal. More recently seeing HIDE at Warsaw opening for the Soft Moon in early 2019 was an extremely inspiring set as well. Most meaningful? Probably seeing Converge in 2005.

When was a time when a firmly held belief was tested?

Stepping away from Old Wounds. It was an extremely hard decision to make. I started the band and put so much energy and effort into every aspect of it for seven long years, but just knew it was the right time to put it to rest. I’m glad I did it but at the time it was tough.

Where do you feel artistic progression leads?

I think at the end of the day artistic progression is always a journey. Even thinking about what I’m doing now compared to what I was doing five years ago is on a completely different path. I’ve always had a strong passion to always keep creating. I don’t force it or fight it, I just let it happen.

How do you define success?

It’s really hard to gauge success because it’s so specific to what I’m doing. I try to only measure “success” with personal achievements and goals. To me, even *starting* a solo project was a huge success. It’s all up from here.

What is something you have seen that you wish you hadn’t?

I guess I’m either extremely desensitized or extremely sheltered because I couldn’t think of a single thing that stuck with me to that extent.

Describe something you haven’t created yet that you’d like to create.

A full-length LP for Trace Amount. I’m working on it now.

What do you believe is the most essential function of art?

I don’t know if one function of art is more essential than the other. Sometimes I need to create, as a form of therapy, other times I’m bored, other times that coffee and weed combo is hitting just right. It is also nice to have both audio and visual forms of art to create, I never really get stuck on one thing.

Something non-musical that you’re looking forward to?

The new season of Beavis and Butt-Head. The summer. The mass population getting vaccinated so I can look forward to something that is musical. The next iced coffee.

https://www.facebook.com/traceamountnyc
https://www.instagram.com/traceamountnyc/
https://traceamountnyc.bandcamp.com/

Trace Amount, Endless Render (2020)

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The Obelisk Questionnaire: Timo Ellis

Posted in Questionnaire on February 25th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

TIMO-ELLIS

The Obelisk Questionnaire is a series of open questions intended to give the answerer an opportunity to explore these ideas and stories from their life as deeply as they choose. Answers can be short or long, and that reveals something in itself, but the most important factor is honesty.

Based on the Proust Questionnaire, the goal over time is to show a diverse range of perspectives as those who take part bring their own points of view to answering the same questions. To see all The Obelisk Questionnaire posts, click here.

Thank you for reading and thanks to all who participate.

The Obelisk Questionnaire: Timo Ellis

How do you define what you do and how did you come to do it?

I define myself (not too hard!) as an artist, primarily as a musician/ composer/ producer, and then latently, but also sincerely in digital art, writing, poetry, and film/ video. I came to do it intuitively, as a means of transmuting (and frankly surviving) my various childhood psychic and emotional difficulties. + even that seems too narratively tidy?? I think I just did it because I had to, and I could.

Describe your first musical memory.

listening on repeat to the “Really, Rosie” LP by Carole King and Maurice Sendak, at home, in 1975.

Describe your best musical memory to date.

(does this mean a memory of music? or a memory of playing music??) my personal experiences playing music have been so hugely varied, not only musically but also emotionally/ psychologically in terms of my frame of (and clarity of!) mind, that I’m afraid I’d unwittingly sanitize/ edit for effect, or optics, even to myself. However I will say that going full acid/ punk rock drumming 200% balls out with Yoko Ono live across Europe was a peak (series of) moments; that band (with Yoko, Sean Lennon, and Andrew Weiss) was fucking monstrous.

When was a time when a firmly held belief was tested?

my moral position on animal liberation regularly gets tested/ nuanced, and ultimately strengthened by the public, as well as by many of my friends and family…however my belief in not mindlessly exploiting/ murdering the Earth/ oceans/ air gets constantly challenged, and mostly complicated/ defeated, by my complicity in still using single use plastics/ buying new electronics/ driving/ flying/ uncritically relying on big oil for electricity, heat and AC.

Where do you feel artistic progression leads?

back to square one, to the beginning (+ hopefully to fiercer and better art!).

How do you define success?

doing consistently excellent work, and then having a good name/ reputation for decency and compassion (*and of course being able to break even doing it is nice, too.).

What is something you have seen that you wish you hadn’t?
in 1980, when I was 10 years old, I saw The Shining in the theater when it came out, by myself, and I think I can safely say that I still haven’t fully recovered from this (hearing Wendy Carlos’s music from this film almost makes me nauseous, even now.).

Describe something you haven’t created yet that you’d like to create.

a loving, supportive relationship with my own mind (I’m working on it though.)

What do you believe is the most essential function of art?

to illuminate the glory and incomprehensible, ecstatic beauty of consciousness, and of life itself.

Something non-musical that you’re looking forward to?

being able to go to the movies again!

https://www.timoellis.com
https://timoellis.bandcamp.com
https://www.instagram.com/timoellismusic
https://www.youtube.com/user/squenchy
https://www.facebook.com/timoellismusic
https://soundcloud.com/timoellismusic

Timo Ellis, Death is Everywhere (2021)

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Friday Full-Length: Naam, Kingdom EP

Posted in Bootleg Theater on December 4th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Looking back now, Naam were probably a couple years ahead of their time. Three or four, at least. They formed as the three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Ryan Hamilton, bassist/sometimes vocalist John Bundy and drummer Eli Pizzuto — or at least that’s who they were when they got around to putting out their debut EP, Kingdom (review here), first on their own and then through Tee Pee Records. Running a special-edition 12″-worthy 23 minutes, the three-songer positioned Naam at the vanguard of a new generation of heavy psychedelic rock.

They weren’t necessarily the first, or even the first psych act in Brooklyn, but they brought a fresh take with a focus as much on depth as expanse tonally and their songs even in this initial batch were undeniable in their groove. There was a reason Tee Pee snagged the band and released the EP on the quick — I mean, it was months, and not that many of them. Naam had “New York hometown weirdo heroes” written all over them.

That blend of elements made Naam feel like something of an East Coast complement to Ancestors, whose demo-turned-debut Neptune with Fire, was issued by Tee Pee in 2008, but the two bands’ paths would quickly-enough diverge. And really, epic neo-stoner was hardly limited to either act, but it was the generational turnover they represented that really set them apart. Going to gigs in Manhattan or Brooklyn at this point, one was bound to run into the band on some stage or other, and listening to Kingdom, one hardly knew that they were woodshedding a progression that would carry them across their two full-lengths and the next five years of international touring, before their eventual disbanding in 2014, but that’s how it turned out.

Kingdom still bleeds that original potential. It takes lack of pretense to an extreme in its fuzzy cause. The 11-minute closing title-track soars, sure, but opener “Skyling Slip” manages to pack its breadth into a five-minute run, rumbling with low-end threat at the outset but unfurling a nod that is so warm as to be genuinely welcoming in its atmosphere. Welcoming and dusty, anyhow. A shuffle takes hold in “Skyling Slip,” all proto-space rock and winding as it is, but psychedelic and heavy in like portion, the guitar and bass and drums urgent, driving,naam kingdom in the first half only to split out with wah-drenched soloing and effects for a midsection jam that leads to a slowdown and eventual plus-keys boogie buildup finish. They go far, but never seem to be all the gone on “Skyling Slip,” and that would prove to be emblematic of the band Naam would become: a deceptive sense of control underscoring material that seemed to swirl beyond grasp.

“Fever if Fire” is slightly longer than “Skyling Slip,” though both would becomes staples of live sets, and eases its way into the verse with a shimmering riff and Pizzuto‘s drumming as the secret weapon holding it together. I won’t take anything away from any one of these players, but the post-Sleep intricacy of what Pizzuto brings to “Fever if Fire” still rings as a call to worship, pulling off multiple tempo changes with apparent ease and bolstering guitar and bass alike, mellowing out later to give the final push-off-the-cliff its due dynamic. Or its dynamic due. Whatever.

And when you go off the cliff from “Fever if Fire,” you land in “Kingdom” itself. If you were ever so fortunate as to see Naam play this live, with Bundy howling upward on the mic to join Hamilton‘s recitations of the title in the apex of the massive, hypnotic jam that the song became, well, then you already know the deal. But consider the beginning of “Kingdom” as well. HamiltonBundy and Pizzuto are locked in from the start, and though its 2:40 before the first verse even starts — barely discernible as it is through the morass of echo that surrounds; like a bullhorn really far away spouting stoned gnosticism — you wouldn’t call the track patient. There’s just that much moving to be done. Circa 4:30, Bundy‘s bass leads a speedier charge, but within a minute the slowdown lands big, big, big, and “Kingdom” begins its outward excursion, coming to a stop only at the lines, “Kingdom of heaven/Twelve by six/Christ is born on the crucifix…,” etc. as the vocals lead the tension mounting toward the song’s and the EP’s payoff. “This is freedom. This is my birthright. Kingdom.” Fuck yes.

I won’t claim to know what the hell “Kingdom” is actually about, but I know when I hear that line of sitar or keys or whatever melodic thing it is backing Hamilton‘s fuzzed-beyond-fuzz solo, I still get chills up my spine. And why the hell not? If you’re listening to EP now and thinking “wow they could really ride that groove much longer” at the end, you’re right. “Kingdom” became 16 minutes when it led off their 2009 self-titled full-length debut (discussed here), and was no less captivating for the additional time. Naam toured and did local support gigs in New York, growing spacier all the while. Next outings like 2012’s The Ballad of the Starchild EP (review here), 2013’s Vow (review here), and their 2014 split with Black RainbowsWhite Hills and The Flying Eyes (review here) found Naam not only working as a four-piece with John Weingarten added to the fold on keys, but becoming ever more identifiable in their take on cosmic heft.

It was a bummer when they broke up, but so it goes. Pizzuto was playing in Virginia’s Sinister Haze a couple years back, but I don’t think Hamilton or Bundy have gotten anything going at this point. That’s a bummer, and in another world, Naam would be ripe for reunion, getting back on stage and hopefully picking up the added experimentalism with which they left off and taking it even further into the unknown. 2020 isn’t that world, to say the least. What Kingdom still stands for, though, is the possibilities that Naam would explore in the next few years, as well as the special grit that only existed in their sound at the moment it was captured. They were never the same twice, but Naam was always a special band.

As ever, I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading.

Maybe not the least productive morning ever, but definitely on the list. I got a text from my wife at 4AM. She was next to me in bed, mind you, but sending me the text so I’d see it when my alarm went off an hour later so I’d know what was up. The phone buzz woke me from whatever anxiety dream I was having — who can remember? — and I saw her note that the internet was out. It was back on by the time I actually got up an hour later, but has continued to be in and out since. I’m supposed to do a video interview in an hour that’s been rescheduled like three times already. Here comes number four!

So, when I should’ve been writing this post, I was instead trying to chase down wifi problems, to no frickin’ frackin’ avail. Yes, I turned everything off and on again. Yes, twice. No, I didn’t burn the router to the ground so the soil would be richer for the next connection. Should I try that?

Meantime, the dog’s already up and The Pecan is up early circa 6:10 and that’s pretty much the end of my time. I got all the way to the Ancestors comparison above before I had to go get the kid. Normally, I’d finish the first half of the post, if not the whole thing. Frustration.

I went to bed last night cursing the internet for something else entirely. Today I feel all the more justified for that.

I don’t know what’s up this weekend. Nothing? We’re pretty much under lockdown here, what with the rampant plague and all — oh that old thing! — and it’s cold anyway. I’ve stopped going running since I hurt my ankle and kind of gave up on life. I need to go grocery shopping and I’ll go by myself even though it makes no sense since, what, I’m gonna get covid and my wife isn’t? I’m gonna quarantine for 10 days upstairs in the guest room while she runs The Pecan around full-time, trying to work all the while? I’d better be dead before we get there, though there were plenty of times this week where I’d have taken that bargain.

Anyway, if anyone needs me, I’ll be here, being bummed out that no one cares about my Star Trek tweets, waiting for bedtime.

Great and safe weekend. Wear your mask. Hydrate. Don’t make eye contact. I hear that’s how it travels.

FRM.

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