Corrosion of Conformity Announce Australia & New Zealand Touring

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 26th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

corrosion of conformity (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Maybe you saw Corrosion of Conformity live at some point this year in the US. Maybe you caught them at Freak Valley and other fests this year or you’re looking forward to seeing them in Europe next Spring as they make the rounds of the Spring festival circuit, doing Desertfest in London and Berlin, no doubt among a slew of other still to be announced. The point is, C.O.C. have been touring. Hard.

And even as they’ve been celebrating their past and landmark releases, they haven’t exactly been shy about showing love to 2018’s No Cross No Crown (review here), and neither should they be, honestly, both because it kicks ass and because it was a long time coming. I dug what the re-emergent Animosity-era three-piece of C.O.C. started doing abut a decade ago, but it’s a different animal, even if it’s most (or I guess half now) of the same people.

Well, Corrosion of Conformity haven’t been to Australia and New Zealand in six years, so as they continue to make the rounds on this significant-ass album cycle, they’re headed out that way in February for a round of shows presented by Silverback Touring, who posted the dates thusly:

corrosion of conformity ausnz tour

We are stoked to announce the triumphant return of Southern rock legends, Corrosion Of Conformity, to Australia and New Zealand, and this time with Pepper Keenan up front. Pepper returned to the band for 2018’s massive “No Cross No Crown” album which charted around the world, including Australia.

These shows are not to be missed. Tickets on sale now.

On sale now: bit.ly/cocaus20

Corrosion of Conformity – Australian & New Zealand Tour
Tour Dates:
Tue 4 Feb – Auckland, Galatos
Wed 5 Feb- Adelaide, Lion Arts Factory
Thu 6 Feb – Perth, Amplifier Capitol
Fri 7 Feb – Melbourne, Max Watt’s House of Music
Sat 8 Feb – Brisbane, Crowbar Brisbane
Wed 12 Feb – Sydney, Crowbar Sydney

On sale now: bit.ly/cocaus20

http://www.coc.com
http://www.facebook.com/corrosionofconformity
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Corrosion of Conformity, “The Luddite” official video

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Desertfest London 2020 Makes First Lineup Announcement

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 8th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

desertfest london 2020 header

Desertfest London 2020 has made its first lineup announcement, with nine acts serving as the foundation of the fray set to take place May 1-3 next year. This one happened a bit ago, concurrent I think to the Desertfest Berlin first announcement, but, well, life happens I guess. Either way, the two festivals will share an artwork theme for the first time, which feels only appropriate — one hopes Desertfest New York does the same next September, if only because I’d like to buy a poster on this theme — as well as a few acts in the likes of Masters of RealityCorrosion of ConformityBrant Bjork, and Orange Goblin.

They may end up sharing more than that, of course, between the bands that each has thus far revealed. There’s always a bit of stagger between one and the other as they add locals — The Brothers Keg and Green Lung and Black Orchids come to mind here — to distinguish themselves and each offer something of its own to attendees. I wouldn’t be surprised, for example, if The Picturebooks and Possessor wound up playing Berlin too, but that hasn’t been announced yet if it’s going to happen at all. You get the point.

The point is Deserfest London 2020 already looks awesome, and if you can make it, you should go. I should go too. We should all go. And hang out. It’ll be fun.

Mark your calendar:

desertfest london 2020 poster

MASTERS OF REALITY, CORROSION OF CONFORMITY, ORANGE GOBLIN + 6 MORE ANNOUNCED AS FIRST ACTS FOR DESERTFEST LONDON 2020

For their first UK appearance in five years, Masters Of Reality – Official will make their Desertfest debut as 2020 headliners next May. One of the most influential bands in desert rock history, with the genres very own Godfather at the reins, Masters is the brainchild of legendary producer Chris Goss (Welcome to Sky Valley, Rated R, Blues for The Red Sun, Songs for The Deaf). Their effortless combination of hard-rock blues with an experimentally progressive tinge makes no apologies for not sticking within the stylised box listeners would assume, yet simultaneously provides the perfect lesson in the musical ethos and story-telling of the Palm Desert scene.

Joining them on the bill will be North Carolina favourites Corrosion Of Conformity whose unmistakable Southern stomp is always a welcome addition, OG’s of the Desertfest family Orange Goblin will celebrate 25 years of relentless riffs and the desert daze continues as living legend Brant Bjork is set to bask in psychedelic sunshine.

Elsewhere we see high-octane German party duo The Picturebooks, London based psychedelic doom devotees GREEN LUNG show just why they are on our ones-to-watch-list and more home-grown talent comes in the form of space sludge stalwarts The Brothers Keg, the unhinged ferocity of Possessor and a journey of groove and reflection with the other-worldly soundscapes of Black Orchids.

Weekend tickets are now on sale and with dozens more bands to still be announced we implore you to pick up a ticket sooner rather than later!

Tickets & more info here – www.desertfest.co.uk || https://link.dice.fm/desertfest20 (*you do not need the DICE app to purchase via DICE!)

Artwork by Piotr w. Osburne

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Corrosion of Conformity, Live at Freak Valley Festival 2019

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Desertfest Berlin 2020: First Lineup Announcement: Masters of Reality, Brant Bjork, C.O.C., Orange Goblin & More

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 30th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

desertfest berlin 2020 banner

I admit, I’m going to miss seeing the poster art for Desertfest Berlin 2019 around thee social medias, but if there’s one thing that eases that loss, it’s the poster art for Desertfest Berlin 2020. It’s like something out of a cel-shaded JRPG, but, you know, awesome, and an airship is always welcome as far as I’m concerned. Will this be the year I finally get my ass to Berlin? I’d be lying if I said that their having Masters of Reality — who’ll also be in London — on the bill wasn’t a significant draw in my head. I’d wonder if they won’t do New York as well, but they don’t do a lot of shows at all, so I’m not going to bank on that. Of course, having Corrosion of ConformityBrant BjorkOrange GoblinPapirMinami DeutschSÅVER, Earth Tongue and Dhidalah certainly doesn’t hurt the argument either, but it’s just the beginning of Spring fest-announcement season, and so there’s much more to get all giddy-hyperbole about to come in the next few months. Hell, they haven’t even held Desertfest Belgium yet.

Bottom line: expect this airship to circle around many more times before May 1.

From the PR wire:

desertfest berlin 2020 first poster

https://www.facebook.com/events/520164272080736/

MASTERS OF REALITY | CORROSION OF CONFORMITY | BRANT BJORK | ORANGE GOBLIN | MINAMI DEUTSCH | EARTH TONGUE | PAPIR | DHIDALAH | SÂVER confirmed for Desertfest Berlin 2020!!!

Tickets now on sale at: www.desertfest-tickets.de

Finally, we are thrilled to announce the first batch of (outstanding!) acts for our 9th edition, taking place at the ARENA BERLIN May 1st – 3rd 2020. You may not believe your eyes, but it’s a dream come true: Palm Desert scene icons, Masters Of Reality – Official, are finally playing Desertfest! Fronted by Chris Goss, renowned producer of legendary bands such as Kyuss, Queen of the Stone Age and many more, with their Black Sabbath-inspired sound MASTERS OF REALITY will take you on an unforgettable trip through the desert. A true milestone in the eclectic live history of Desertfest Berlin!

It’s been a dozen years since Southern Rock legends, Corrosion Of Conformity, would reunite with Pepper Keenan to blow the doors off the whole damn scene again. In 2014, after nearly a straight decade traversing the globe as a guitarist with New Orleans supergroup DOWN, Keenan reconnected with the core C.O.C. trio of Woody Weatherman, Mike Dean and Reed Mullin to hit the road hard. And the long wait is over, we will give them a warm and heavy rocking welcome in 2020!

The Godfather of Desert Rock, Brant Bjork, will return to the Desertfest Berlin stage and revive your spirit! Brant has spent over a quarter-century at the epicenter of Californian desert rock. From cutting his teeth alongside Fatso Jetson’s Mario Lalli in hardcore punkers De-Con to drumming and composing on Kyuss’ landmark early albums, to propelling the seminal fuzz of Fu Manchu from 1994-2001 while producing other bands, putting together offshoot projects like Ché, embarking on his solo career as a singer, guitarist and bandleader, founding his own record label and more, his history is a winding narrative of relentless, unflinching creativity. Expect timeless classics and a new album next Spring, and lay back to get into the groove with the one & only, Mr. BRANT BJORK live at the Arena Berlin!

Widely admired as one of the most ludicrously thunderous and entertaining live bands on the planet, longtime Desertfest comrades Orange Goblin, are on their unstoppable mission to bring us joyous, blood ’n’ thunder metal! With a steady stream of critically acclaimed albums that boldly and gleefully blurred the lines between stoner, doom, black, crust and southern rock, while always fervently saluting the old school heavy metal flag and the sacred Sabbathian code. 2020 will celebrate their 25th anniversary, still ORANGE GOBLIN is an inspiration, full of power and ready to unleash their thunder over Berlin!

Hailing from Japan, kraut rock masters Minami Deutsch have been finally confirmed for the Berlin edition of Desertfest! After their highly acclaimed show at Desertfest Belgium two years ago, desert festers in Berlin will be finally able to witness their unique, mesmerizing live performance. Kraut rock may be alive heavier than ever, but this Tokyo trio proves they are way more than just a revival act. Don’t miss this EXCLUSIVE show of the fantastic MINAMI DEUTSCH!

Sometimes music is supposed to feel weird and indescribable. It’s the moments of clarity within the dense, sonic mess that often feels the most satisfying. That’s the space that New Zealand prog-rockers Earth Tongue occupy. With their 2016- debut EP and a just released full-length album, these guys quickly became one of NZ’s most exciting underground live acts and it wasn’t long until they were playing alongside international touring bands like Red Fang, Beastwars or
Monolord. We are thrilled to welcome EARTH TONGUE live in 2020, taking us all on raw and fuzzy journey into psych-rock with a sound that weaves between melodic and jarring, with unexpected turns leaving us in a disoriented, euphoric haze.

Copenhagen trio, Papir, might be the ultimate expression of the Danish creative soul: distinctively modern, deceptively minimalistic, and stylish yet understated. A band of virtuoso musicians who move between psychedelic rock, jazz and krautrock seamlessly with the ability to hypnotize you at the Arena Berlin; PAPIR are the real deal for fans of bands alike Causa Sui, and could easily become the showboats of the scene!

Dhidalah burst into the fuzz rock scene in 2013, and has hailed from the Tokyo underground as a space rock power trio. The band name derives from the Japanese legend of the Giant Gods — known as the creaters of mountains, lakes and islands. DHIDALAH plays improvisational music performances inspired by various genres from stoner and doom to kraut rock. Give these Japanese Giant Gods a very warm welcome next Spring, when the Arena will be turned into a psychedelic wonderland!

Norway’s hottest underground act, SÂVER, is the new project of Ole Christian Helstad, Ole Ulvik Rokseth and Markus Støle of TOMBSTONES and HYMN. The band delivers an astounding sound of sublime heaviness, shimmering moogs, abrasive vocals and a devastating, gnarly bass. SÂVER’s tunes can be characterized by a strong component of apocalyptic synths and textural electronics hovering above the base of heavy guitars and bass – a mélange that works incredibly well, and has seen SÂVER rising up and being no longer just one of the world’s best kept music secrets!

Friends, we hope you enjoy this first round of bands as much as we do, with many more killer names to come. After last year’s changes of a new sound system, the “Black Box“, that many of you seem to appreciate, we will also again provide a lot more specials, space, and again a chill- and live zone on the ubercool Hoppetosse boat! Don’t miss THE fuzz rock party of the year, at the capitol of the almighty riffs: DESERTFEST BERLIN 2020 is ready to roll!

Tickets & more infos are now available at:
www.desertfest.de

https://www.facebook.com/events/520164272080736/
www.desertfest.de
www.facebook.com/DesertfestBerlin
www.instagram.com/desertfest_berlin

Masters of Reality, “Dreamtime Stomp”

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Live Review: Corrosion of Conformity, Crowbar, Quaker City Night Hawks & Lo-Pan in NJ, 08.25.19

Posted in Reviews on August 26th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Corrosion of Conformity (Photo by JJ Koczan)

It seems unlikely to me, but apparently the last time I was at Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, New Jersey, was 2011? Not much has changed. They still have the big screen that comes down between bands to promote upcoming shows — a lot of pop-punk, some bigger metal, and DJ Pauly D will be there in December, just in case you forgot you were in NJ — and they still have the bars liberally strewn about the back and sides of the venue. I feel like I’ve spent significant time in that room in the past, but apparently not in the last eight years. It’s like I lived in a different state for most of that time or something. Huh.

Even the Old Bridge Militia — a name that sounds way more threatening than the reality of being dudes-who’ve-been-going-to-shows-since-probably-before-you-were-born-and-made-shirts-to-prove-it — came out for this one, and fair enough. It was the second to last night of Corrosion of Conformity‘s ‘A Quest to Believe: A Call to the Void’ Tour, an earlier leg of which already saw them on the road with Crowbar. Support this time for the two riffly titans was from Texas four-piece Quaker City Night Hawks and Columbus, Ohio’s own Lo-Pan, who’ve also been doing off-day shows with Crowbar such as that further north in Teaneck, NJ, on July 25 (review here), where they and Crowbar kicked off the tour early with a gig on their own at Debonair Music Hall.

The tour, which C.O.C. and Quaker City Night Hawks joined on July 26 in Poughkeepsie, NY, would wrap up the following evening in Providence, Rhode Island. Starland tapped local progressive rockers Elephant Talk to open, who were young — as in, actually young and no, it’s not just that 30-year-olds are starting to look like kids to me — and tight in kind, with a technical flourish to their play that was well met by the melodies of vocalist Ava Panza. I can’t really say they were my thing, but they held down that stage without question and their bassist’s periodic slaps added a bit of funk to the nuanced proceedings. They also threw in a drum solo, which, for a 20- or 25-minute set felt particularly bold. Kid earned it though, and also nailed it.

I interviewed Lo-Pan drummer Jesse Bartz before the show started (will post probably early next week or later this week; check back, it was a good talk), talking about the tour and a bit of how the different personalities in the band interact in life as well as on stage. I’ll say this, especially for having seen them just a month ago, I can’t remember the last time I caught a band who had their 1,000-yard stare working so hard on stage. Bartz was set up toward the front of the stage in a line with bassist Scott Thompson, vocalist Jeff Martin and guitarist Chris Thompson, and their set too would be short — six songs, all from earlier-2019’s Subtle (review here) — but they were so locked in that the time-to-hit-it feel was automatic.

No warm up, no getting their feet under them, nothing. Not playing, then playing; in that order. They looked and sounded like a band who’d been on the road for four weeks, in that they were doing their set, hell or high water, and that even if the power had gone out, I don’t think that would’ve stopped them. They were their own generators, and their output was as pro-shop as I’ve ever heard them sound in the last decade-plus. The material on Subtle was well suited to such a sharpened execution and it was enough to wonder which came first, the songs being so on point or the on point-ness of the band resulting in the songs.

A couple minutes maybe to breathe, but not much more than that before Quaker City Night Hawks took the Starland stage, playing classic-style Southern blues boogie, not afraid to throw in a little twang or a slow jam here and there amid all the soulful guitar and periodic three-part harmonies. I’d purposefully gone into their set not knowing much of their stuff, but they released the acronymically-titled QCNH in back in March and sounded fluid easing into the sleek groove of “Fox in the Henhouse” from that record, which closed their set and featured a jump-on appearance on stage from C.O.C.‘s Pepper Keenan. It being C.O.C. and Crowbar‘s crowd primarily, some of the more country aspects went over a few heads in the crowd, but I suspect Quaker City Night Hawks made a lot of new friends on this tour, bands and fans alike.

Central Jersey’s special brand of shitkickers was out in full force by the time Crowbar went on, and the mosh that ensued kept up for Corrosion of Conformity as well. Of the New Orleans sludge legends, I’ll note that this was the third time I’ve seen them this year, and if they were coming around again, I’d think long and hard about going. Inimitable frontman Kirk Windstein ignited a couple chants of the band’s name and between familiar inclusions like “Walk with Knowledge Wisely,” “All I Had (I Gave),” “Cemetery Angels” and “Planets Collide,” as well as “To Build a Mountain” — always a highlight — and “To Carry the Load,” the latter taken from 1998’s Odd Fellow’s Rest, which Windstein noted from stage that they rediscovered an affection for as a result of playing the album in full for its 20th anniversary last year.

Crowbar‘s legacy goes without saying, but with Tommy Buckley on drums, Matt Buckley on guitar and Shane Wesley on bass, it was a vital impression the whole band made, not just Windstein. You just can’t, can’t, can’t fuck with seeing Crowbar live. It’s like a natural event. Creature in its habitat and whatnot. Further, when Kirk Windstein, who’s been at the heart of the band for 30 years, tells the crowd he loves them, I believe it. I don’t think he’s selling a line, or just filling dead air. This wasn’t the most thoroughly attended show I’ve ever seen Crowbar play, and neither was Teaneck, but they still absolutely crushed as only they could. Working band, giving the people what they want. The story would be simple as that if it wasn’t so rarely done at their level.

And as was the case earlier this year when I caught them in Boston, you’d be hard-pressed to come up with a better complement to close the night than Corrosion of Conformity playing after Crowbar. Though the long-running North Carolinian outfit are still ostensibly supporting 2018’s No Cross No Crown (review here), it’s worth noting that the set didn’t actually feature any songs from that record. Instead, it was heavy on Deliverance (discussed here) and Wiseblood (discussed here), with dips into America’s Volume Dealer for “13 Angels,” “Diablo Blvd.” and “Who’s Got the Fire” later on. Naturally, “Vote with a Bullet” from 1991’s Blind was aired — a song that, like the Old Bridge Militia, was made in a much, much different time than that in which we currently live — and “Stonebreaker” from 2005’s In the Arms of God got the crowd riled up early for a payoff that seemed to come with “The Door” from Wiseblood further into the set. “Albatross,” Born Again for the Last Time,” “Seven Days,” “King of the Rotten,” “Shake Like You,” “Wiseblood,” “My Grain” — these were the bulk of their time, and I’d like to think that’s because the band knows their regional audience has been with them for those decades. Maybe that’s just the idea for this leg of the tour.

I dug No Cross No Crown a lot, but I would, being a fan. It’s interesting to think they might already be moving past that album in favor of more familiar fare, considering that the more touring they do, the more they move beyond “reunion band” and into “working band” in their four-piece incarnation with Pepper Keenan alongside bassist/vocalist Mike Dean, guitarist/vocalist Woodroe Weatherman and drummer/vocalist John Green holding the spot for Reed Mullin. Still, I’d have to think some of the newer material, even if just a single, would make it into the set over the longer term, but the ‘A Quest to Believe: A Call to the Void’ Tour has newly announced a third leg, so maybe more of the No Cross No Crown stuff will pop back up for that. Could happen.

Somewhere right toward the end of Crowbar, I hit the wall h-a-r-d, and though I caught a second wind with about 10 minutes left, the ride home was far from my most graceful. I’d been up since 4AM, it was coming on midnight. No regrets though. Between seeing Crowbar and Lo-Pan on the front and back ends of the tour, getting to hear Quaker City Night Hawks for the first time and the ever-reliable righteousness of C.O.C., it was my little welcome-back-to-Jersey present to myself. Sure enough, it felt like home.

More pics after the jump if you’re interested. Either way, thanks for reading.

Read more »

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Corrosion of Conformity Announce Summer Tour with Crowbar, Lo-Pan & Quaker City Night Hawks

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 24th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

corrosion of conformity (Photo by JJ Koczan)

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. I can think of fewer tour pairings less broken than Corrosion of Conformity and Crowbar, who were out together co-headlining earlier this year on what turned out to be the first leg of a tour that will continue this July. Of particular note is the addition of Lo-Pan this time around, who’ll be out supporting their new record, Subtle. That record is a beast and they’ll no doubt bring an infusion of energy to the run as they provide support and Quaker City Night Hawks open. Starland Ballroom, you say? That’ll be just about the most Jersey shit ever, methinks. See you there.

Though I wouldn’t mind catching C.O.C. at the Psycho Swim party in Vegas either. Really I’ll take what I can get.

Dates follow from the pr IWRE:

corrosion of conformity crowbar lo pan tour

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY Announces North American Summer Headlining Tour With Crowbar + Band To Headline Psycho Las Vegas Pre-Party And More!

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY will kick off the second leg of their North American headlining tour this July. The A Quest To Believe, A Call To The Void II Tour will commence on July 26th in Poughkeepsie, New York and run through August 25th in Providence, Rhode Island. Support will be provided by their comrades in Crowbar as well as Lo-Pan and Quaker City Night Hawks. Tickets go on sale this Friday at all local ticket outlets.

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY will also play a special one-off show with country singer Cody Jinks next month in addition to festival appearances at Rocklahoma, Heavy MTL, KISW’s Pain In The Grass, and a headlining performance at Psycho Swim, Psycho Las Vegas’ annual pool-bound kick-off party where the band will be joined by Lucifer, Danava, ASG, Primitive Man, and more. In October, CORROSION OF CONFORMITY will appear on the inaugural MegaCruise alongside Megadeth, Anthrax, Testament, Overkill, and so many others with more shows to be announced in the months to come. See all confirmed dates below.

No Cross No Crown is available on CD, digital, vinyl, and cassette formats. Various order bundles are available at nuclearblast.com/coc-nocrossnocrown.

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY:
5/09/2019 Coyote Joe’s – Charlotte, NC w/ Cody Jinks
5/24/2019 Rocklahoma – Pryor, OK

w/ Crowbar, Lo-Pan, Quaker City Night Hawks:
7/26/2019 The Chance – Poughkeepsie, NY
7/27/2019 Westcott Theater – Syracuse, NY
7/28/2019 Heavy MTL – Montreal, QC *
7/29/2019 Dallas Nightclub – Kitchener, ON
7/31/2019 Mercury Ballroom – Louisville, KY
8/01/2019 Elevation – Grand Rapids, MI
8/02/2019 The Rave II – Milwaukee, WI
8/03/2019 KISW’s Pain In The Grass @ White River Amphitheatre – Auburn, WA *
8/05/2019 Deluxe @ Old National Centre – Indianapolis, IN
8/06/2019 Pop’s – Sauget, IL
8/07/2019 Slowdown – Omaha, NE
8/10/2019 Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO
8/11/2019 Mesa Theater – Grand Junction, CO
8/13/2019 Knitting Factory Concert House – Boise, ID
8/14/2019 The Complex – Salt Lake City, UT
8/15/2019 Psycho Swim @ Daylight Beach Club – Las Vegas, NV *
8/16/2019 Encore – Tucson, AZ
8/17/2019 Sunshine Theater – Albuquerque, NM
8/19/2019 Come And Take It Live – Austin, TX
8/21/2019 1904 Music Hall – Jacksonville, FL
8/22/2019 The Tarheel – Jacksonville, NC
8/23/2019 Elevation 27 – Virginia Beach, VA
8/24/2019 Starland Ballroom – Sayreville, NJ
8/25/2019 Fete Music Hall – Providence, RI
10/13/2019 MegaCruise 2019 – Los Angeles, CA *
* COC only

http://www.coc.com
http://www.facebook.com/corrosionofconformity
http://www.twitter.com/coccabal
http://www.nuclearblast.com
http://www.facebook.com/nuclearblastusa

Corrosion of Conformity, “Wolf Named Crow” official video

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Psycho Las Vegas 2019 Announces Psycho Swim Pool Party with C.O.C., Lucifer, Danava and More

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 5th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

You know, last year, when Psycho Last Vegas hosted the likes of Bell Witch and Wolves in the Throne Room at its Pool Party pre-show (review here) in the 100-plus degree heat, the “this I gotta see” factor was pretty high. The tone of spectacle that the Pool Party sets is in no small part a defining factor for what makes Psycho Psycho. And by that I mean it’s completely insane, front to back, concept to execution, and yet somehow it not only works, but works well. You’re gonna put Primitive Man — one of the most abrasive, filthiest-sounding, heaviest acts on the planet right now, on a stage used for poolside dance parties and techno nights? How does this even make sense?

It doesn’t need to. Corrosion of Conformity headline the newly-christened Psycho Swim — because you’re god damn right they do — and Lucifer, Danava, ASG, indeed, Primitive Man, Idle Hands, Howling Giant and Thrown into Exile will play. It’s the biggest Pool Party yet that Psycho has hosted, because duh, of course it is, and it seems that as the fest itself continues to scale upward on just about every level — creative scope, reach of the acts it pulls in stylistically and geographically, and the number of venues and attendees — it’s bringing the Pool Party along for the ride. All the better.

Lineup and ticket info follow. It’s going to be limited space, so keep that in mind before you get stoned and try to wander in late or something.

Dig:

psycho swim

PSYCHO SWIM 2019

Official Psycho Las Vegas 2019 pre-party Aug. 15. Daylight Beach Club, Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino.

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY
LUCIFER
DANAVA
ASG
PRIMITIVE MAN
IDLE HANDS
HOWLING GIANT
THROWN INTO EXILE

limited to 1500 people, 300 vips get in for free and receive private cabanas and dipping pools as part of the psycho vip experience….tickets are only available online while supplies last. tickets are $35 & $55.

https://www.facebook.com/events/2035404693146567/
https://www.facebook.com/psychoLasVegas/
https://www.instagram.com/psycholasvegas/
http://vivapsycho.com

Corrosion of Conformity, Live in Atlanta, GA, Feb. 23, 2019

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Live Review: Corrosion of Conformity, Crowbar, The Obsessed & Mothership in Boston, 02.16.19

Posted in Reviews on February 18th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Corrosion of Conformity (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Not every venue in the Boston metro area has been turned into yuppie-fuckbox condos as yet, and so it was with what felt like due urgency I crawled out of my hole in the frozen New England ground and headed to town to catch Corrosion of Conformity headlining on a four-band bill shared with Crowbar, The Obsessed and Mothership. That urgency would smash face-first into a hurry-up-and-wait half-hour of driving around the block of the Brighton Music Hall looking for a place to park, but I still made it in time to be there moments after doors opened. It was going to be a good night. The show was sold out, and rightly so.

The C.O.C. crowd is always an interesting mix. Metallers, rockers, stoners, boozers: mostly but not entirely dudes. As I leaned on the barrier waiting for the show to start, a father was telling his son about the bands playing. So one way or another, there were multiple demographics at play. The lineup would serve that well.

I was back and forth while the night played out, but even when I was standing off to the side of the stage in the kind of hallway to back bar, the sound was full and the production, lights, etc., were dead on. The short version is it was a joy to witness and I felt stupid lucky to be there, but of course there was more to it than that. Here’s how it went:

Mothership

Mothership (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Before Dallas trio Mothership went on at 7:30PM to launch the night, I overheard a guy telling his friend he knew nothing about the band. I didn’t look back after the band started to see, but no doubt he like the rest of the place had his ass blown out of the room by the classic rocking three-piece. Kelley Juett is a ’70s-style madman shredder on guitar, and his energy quickly became a catalyst for the crowd. With Kyle Juett holding down primary vocal duties and bass and Judge Smith behind on drums, Mothership were way less an “opening” band and way less of a “support” act than they were a warmup for the rest of the show to come. There was not a head in the room that was not into it by the time they were wrapping up “Angel of Death” from their 2012 self-titled debut (review here), and as it was their second time touring with C.O.C., they were pro-shop all the way through. Though this was my first experience seeing them live — something for which I’ve long been overdue — the impression I’ve gotten from all their work to-date has been they’re a live band, and they brought that to to the stage at the Brighton Music Hall. They’ve put in significant road time over the last half-decade-plus, and it showed. With Kelley and Kyle headbanging away and Smith twirling a drum stick every now and again, they were a reminder that rock and roll doesn’t have to be a joke to be a good time. Short set, but killer set. Killer band. Will see again as they headline the first night of this year’s Maryland Doom Fest.

The Obsessed

The Obsessed (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Theoretically, The Obsessed are touring behind their 2017 return album, Sacred (review here), which was their first record in more than two decades, but really, it feels like anytime you get to see The Obsessed, it’s less about any single album than the sheer groove that holds sway for however long their set might be. With the inimitable — not for others’ lack of trying — Scott “Wino” Weinrich as the founding principal on vocals and guitar, Brian Constantino on drums and Reid Raley (also Rwake) slow-headbanging on bass, The Obsessed came across way less as a reunion band than a working one. This was their first night of the tour — I’d thought they’d joined earlier, but nope — but if there was rust being shook off or anything like that, it didn’t show. Theirs was a different kind of presence from Mothership to coincide with the doom-infused sound, but songs like “Streetside” and “Neatz Brigade” are nothing short of landmarks and a significant chunk of the foundation of what one generally thinks of as “traditional doom,” so yes, I was glad to be there to bear witness. Standing by Raley‘s side of the stage, the floor shook from the low end, and each pulse of Constantino‘s kickdrum was easy to feel in the chest. Topped off with Wino‘s signature tone and blues-drenched solo style, it was less of an assault of volume than a celebration of it, and The Obsessed‘s legacy — coming up on 40 years since their first demo — remains utterly vital to the landscape of modern doom.

Crowbar

Crowbar (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Right down to business with “All I Had I Gave” opening the set, which was enough to get a heartfelt “fucking a” out of me. Founding guitarist/vocalist Kirk Windstein, as ever, introduced them by saying they were Crowbar from New Orleans, Louisiana, and as far as the room was concerned, there was no more explanation necessary. There was barely space to stand but somehow the crowd parted for a mosh, and the four-piece sludge progenitors ate it up, drummer Tommy Buckley making a bid for being the hardest-hitting of the evening through “To Build a Mountain” and “The Cemetery Angels,” which found him, Windstein, guitarist Matt Buckley and bassist Shane Wesley all locked into a massive, build-up-into-slowdown chug that had heads nodding front to back. They played nothing from 2016’s The Serpent Only Lies (review here), going only so far as “Walk with Knowledge Wisely” from 2014’s Symmetry in Black, but with “Planets Collide” and “Like Broken Glass” tucked together as a grand finale, I’m not sure there was anything more I’d have asked of them anyhow. As Crowbar celebrate 30 years, their history remains someplace between metal, sludge and even hardcore, but whatever genre elements one might want to tag, they are an act unto themselves, and with Windstein as the central figure, they pummeled and pounded Boston to a pulp of local sports logos, blown eardrums and sticky dried beer. This was the best I’d seen them in a while, and for being so perennially downtrodden, their spirits seemed awfully high.

Corrosion of Conformity

Corrosion of Conformity (Photo by JJ Koczan)

There wasn’t one act on this bill I wouldn’t call veteran, even if the degree to which that applies might vary. Still, there’s an unmistakable presence when C.O.C. takes the stage. It’s not just Pepper Keenan, either. From Woody Weatherman on one side of the stage to Mike Dean on the other, Corrosion of Conformity were unquestionably the headliners of what had already been a great night. They came on with “Stonebreaker” from 2005’s In the Arms of God and with Eric Hernandez on drums in place of Reed Mullin, they stomped and stormed through “Wiseblood” and the newer “Wolf Named Crow” from last year’s No Cross No Crown (review here) before making highlights of “Diablo Blvd.” from 2000’s undervalued America’s Volume Dealer and “Seven Days” from 1994’s ultra-landmark, Deliverance (discussed here), the 25th anniversary of which they’ll be celebrating later this year at least in Europe and probably also the US — they’ve already been announced for Freak Valley in Germany and one suspects more will come. “Vote with a Bullet,” even for being the first song Keenan fronted the band, seemed a little past its date in light of a culture of mass shootings, but it’s still catchy, and “Seven Days” reined in some of that vibe, while “Paranoid Opioid” reminded of the band’s punk roots and of course the final salvo of “Albatross” and “Clean My Wounds” served as reinforcement of the heavy Southern groove that’s helped make C.O.C. an institution for the last however many decades. After all the righteousness that preceded them, it was their show without question, and they delivered on any level of expectation and then some.

Special thanks to Liz Ciavarella-Brenner for hooking this one up, and thanks to you for reading. Many more pics after the jump.

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Freak Valley 2019: C.O.C. to Celebrate 25 Years of Deliverance; Harsh Toke, Pristine, It’s Not Night: It’s Space and The Fierce & the Dead Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 21st, 2019 by JJ Koczan

freak valley 2019 header image

As a fan generally of cool bands doing cool things, I’m thrilled to see New York’s It’s Not Night: It’s Space heading to Germany to play Freak Valley 2019. The heavy psychedelic instrumentalists are a group who’ve never really fit with one scene or another, and in the context of a fest like this, that’s only going to help them catch on with the well-opened minds of those standing in front of the stage to see them. They’ll kill it, and they’re very clearly in good company in this latest lineup announcement from the Siegen-based festival, which also welcomes Corrosion of Conformity to mark 25 years since the release of their landmark Deliverance LP, San Diego jammers Harsh Toke, Pristine and The Fierce and the Dead to the bill. It’s a good swath of stuff and pretty right on front to back. You’ll get no argument out of me.

I had the pleasure of writing the announcement below, so if the phrasing looks familiar, that’s why, but Freak Valley posted it on the social medias as follows:

freak valley 2019 poster

FREAK VALLEY 2019 – CORROSION OF CONFORMITY // PRISTINE // HARSH TOKE // IT’S NOT NIGHT: IT’S SPACE // THE FIERCE & THE DEAD

Happy New Year, Freaks!

New year means new additions to the lineup for FREAK VALLEY FESTIVAL 2019. We’re counting down the months, weeks, days, hours, until we can all party in Netphen and we all know it’s going to be a blast. You obviously know or the fest wouldn’t be TOTALLY SOLD OUT as it is.

Well, as much as we’d like to rest on our laurels and coast into June without putting anymore work in, clearly that’s not going to happen. This announcement is about as special as special gets, as we welcome the classic likes of Corrosion Of Conformity to Freak Valley! Read more below!

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY celebrate 25 years of ‘Deliverance’

In 1994, C.O.C. released an album that would become a landmark for them and for heavy rock as a whole. ‘Deliverance’ wasn’t just a collection of great songs — it was a way to impart a love of classic rock to a new generation of fans, a transitional moment from grunge to the spirit of Sabbath and heavy Southern vibes. Oh yea, and it was a collection of great songs.

For those of you not doing the math, 2019 marks 25 years since ‘Deliverance’ was released, and we’ll be bringing Corrosion of Conformity to Freak Valley for a special set as they celebrate the record that would help define their course for the next quarter-century and hopefully well beyond.

Pristine

A couple months back, Norway’s Pristine posted a video with some in-studio cilps and the usual bit of this and that. They ended with a new song snippet and there was enough rock and roll packed into that 20 seconds of hook to power the entire city of Tromsø. Maybe you heard their 2017 album ‘Ninja’ when it was released on Nuclear Blast, but either way, we guarantee you’ll hear it when they bring their blues rock volume to the Freak Valley stage this June!

HARSH TOKE

From the jammer’s paradise of San Diego, Harsh Toke play some of the coolest smokeout jams ever to come from Southern California. If you don’t know, get yourself up to speed with their split with Earthless or just show up with your eyes and ears and mind wide open and get ready to have all three blown out of your skull. These dudes do “far out” just that extra bit further than you’d expect, but always manage to keep it together. Pure psych-jam bliss headed your way.

It’s Not Night: It’s Space

The best-kept secret of US East Coast psychedelia will be kept no more! New York-based It’s Not Night: It’s Space have mastered a patient instrumental blend of tantric sounds and cosmic vibes that is an incantation unto itself. The kind of sound you get lost in. The kind of vibe that stays with you when they’re done. Live, they’re as much ritual as performance, as can’t wait to have that ritual as a part of Freak Valley 2019! Bring vinyl money.

The Fierce & The Dead

We all know London is a hotbed for heavy, but The Fierce & the Dead stand out from the pack with a synth-laden progressive side to their instrumental approach that lets them move back and forth from psychedelia to crunching riffs and grooves with ease and fluidity. Their 2018 album, ‘The Eurphoric,’ hasn’t left our playlist since it landed, so absolutely, hell yes they’ll be playing Freak Valley 2019, and absolutely, hell yes you should be there to see them.

Line-up 2019:
Wolfmother, CORROSION OF CONFORMITY, Brant Bjork, Yob, The Obsessed Official, The Vintage Caravan, Electric Moon, Minami Deutsch / ????, Harsh Toke, Pristine, It’s Not Night: It’s Space, Spaceslug, Arc of Ascent, The Fierce & The Dead, Dead Lord, Slomatics

FREAK VALLEY FESTIVAL 2019 // No Fillers – Just Killers

www.freakvalley.de
https://www.facebook.com/freakvalley
https://www.facebook.com/events/299339670806919/
https://twitter.com/FreakValley

It’s Not Night: It’s Space, Our Birth is but a Sleep and a Forgetting (2016)

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