Roadburn 2020 Adds 40 Watt Sun, Patrick Walker, Inter Arma, Darsombra, Dommengang, Kungens Män & Many More

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 29th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

ROADBURN 2020 BANNER

This announcement went out yesterday from Roadburn 2020, and as we in the United States celebrated Thanksgiving — one of our least morally reprehensible holidays until one examines it in any sort of historical context whatsoever — I was extra grateful for the fact that I found out this week that the Weirdo Canyon Dispatch, the daily festival ‘zine for which I’ve served as editor for the last six years, will run again. It’s always a fingers-crossed scenario as to whether there will be the budget for such a thing — it’s not like I could begrudge them making the right choice if it was “who needs the money, David Eugene Edwards or WCD?” — but I am of course beyond thrilled to say that I will be at Roadburn Festival for the 11th year in a row in 2020. If you’re going, I’m the guy with the cosmic backpack dorking out during Patrick Walker‘s solo set.

Which, by the way is a thing that’s happening. That was added along with Inter Arma playing their latest LP, Sulphur English, in its masterful entirety, DommengangDarsombra, two sets from Alcest40 Watt Sun doing The Inside Room in full, and Kungens Män and a whole bunch of others. I’ll look forward to feeling completely overwhelmed by it all as I try to cover as much as possible — like always.

Thanks from the bottom of my heart to Roadburn for having me back. This festival has changed my life.

Here’s the update:

Today’s announcement for Roadburn Festival 2020 includes the only band where our two curators cross over: Alcest, who will play a special set titled ‘Visions du futur’, focussing on their last two albums. James Kent (AKA Perturbator) also added OKKULTOKRATI to his curation, whilst Emma Ruth Rundle added INTER ARMA (playing Sulphur English in full), 40 Watt Sun (playing The Inside Room in full) and a solo Patrick Walker set, Helms Alee and FACS.

Elsewhere we added Algiers, Richard Dawson, Dynfari (playing The Four Doors Of The Mind), BAD BREEDING, White Ward, Dommengang, Kungens Män, darsombra and TAU and The Drones Of Praise.

With 97% of weekend tickets now gone, and day tickets on sale on December 10 – we’re looking forward to seeing you all in Tilburg in April: roadburn.com/tickets

EUROPEAN FESTIVAL AWARD NOMINATION

Roadburn has been nominated in the best small festival category (less than 10,000 visitors) at the European Festival Awards 2019. Votes can be cast HERE. Votes and spreading the word are appreciated as it would be a huge honour for us to win such recognition.

https://www.facebook.com/events/1081424195382564/
https://www.facebook.com/roadburnfestival/
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http://www.roadburn.com

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Quarterly Review: Russian Circles, War Cloud, Here Lies Man, Book of Wyrms, Möyhy-Veikot, Darsombra, Set Fire, Jesus the Snake, Föllakzoid, Dresden Wolves

Posted in Reviews on October 2nd, 2019 by JJ Koczan

quarterly review

Had to take a second this morning to get my email back under 100 unread. It currently stands at 95. There’s just something about being in triple digits that I can’t stand. Press releases and stuff I can usually file right away since not everything’s relevant to the site, etc., but that’s all stuff that either wants follow-up or could be a factor here if there was time. I do my best to try to keep up. And I fail, consistently.

The tradeoff, of course, is I spend that time writing reviews and other stuff for the site. Today’s hump day when we pass the halfway mark of the Fall 2019 Quarterly Review, and we’re doing it in absolutely all-over-the-place style, so all the better. Some pretty familiar names today, but some that might not be as well, so whatever your poison, I hope you enjoy the picking.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Russian Circles, Blood Year

russian circles blood year

There’s simply no denying the force behind the depths and swell of a song like “Kohokia” on Russian Circles‘ latest offering, Blood Year (Sargent House), and though one knows what to expect to some degree from the Chicago heavy post-rockers at this point in their career, they seem to be doing all they can to deliver their instrumental progressions with energy to match the breadth of the spaces and the heft they conjure. Like 2016’s Guidance (review here), the seven-track/39-minute Blood Year — was recorded with Kurt Ballou, whom the trio imported to their hometown to work at Electrical Audio (aka Steve Albini‘s stomping ground) instead of traveling to Massachusetts to track at Ballou‘s Godcity. If it was the long-famed drum sound of Electrical Audio that they wanted and the live feel that so many of the recordings done there have, they got both, so mark it a success and another notch in the belt of one of the heavy underground’s most immersive and evocative outfits. Their building and releasing of tension is second to none and moves into the spiritual by the time they even get to side B, let alone through it.

Russian Circles on Thee Facebooks

Sargent House website

 

War Cloud, State of Shock

war cloud state of shock

Oh, the riffs you’ll gallop. Oakland, California’s War Cloud skirt the line between classic thrash and heavy rock and roll on their second album for Ripple Music, State of Shock, and from the sound of things, they have a good time doing it. The record’s not much over a half-hour long, which is as it should be for this kind of party, and they toy a bit with the balance between their two sides on a rocker like “Do Anything” or the subsequent “Means of Your Defeat” on side B, but the main crux of State of Shock and certainly the impression it makes off the bat with “Striker” and “White Lightning” up front ahead of the six-minute that-moment-when-ThinLizzy-turned-into-IronMaiden “Dangerous Game” is one of homage to the metal of yore, and in following-up the band’s 2017 self-titled debut (review here), it’s a showcase of energy and craft alike as two guitars shred, chug, groove and charge through the material. If they were from the Eastern Seaboard, I’d say something about getting caught in a mosh. As it stands, I’ll go with urging you to jump in the fire instead. Horns up, either way.

War Cloud on Thee Facebooks

Ripple Music website

 

Here Lies Man, No Ground to Walk Upon

here lies man no ground to walk upon

They should’ve just called it an album. Yeah, it would be short at 26 or so minutes, but it’s got everything you’d want from a full-length, and if they’d put a four-minute jam or something on it, they’d have been there anyhow. In any case, Los Angeles’ Afrobeat-infused heavy psych rockers Here Lies Man present seven tracks of dug-in glory with No Ground to Walk Upon (on RidingEasy), continuing to build on the potential shown across their first two LPs, 2017’s self-titled debut (review here) and last year’s You Will Know Nothing (review here), even as they swagger their way through a groove like “Long Legs (Look Away)” and show their continued forward potential. They continue to be a special band — the kind of band who doesn’t just come along every day and who shouldn’t be overlooked during their time, because maybe they’ll be around 30 years and maybe they won’t, but what they’re doing now is bringing something wholly individual to a heavy context. They’ve already proven influential to some degree, but listening to No Ground to Walk Upon cuts like the dream-keyed “Iron Rattles” and the opening strut-into-drone of “Clad in Silver,” one wonders if they wouldn’t be more so if people weren’t too afraid to try to pull this thing off. Hard to argue with that, since more likely than not most couldn’t.

Here Lies Man on Thee Facebooks

RidingEasy Records website

 

Book of Wyrms, Remythologizer

Book of Wyrms Remythologizer

I won’t take anything away from the eight-minute “Blacklight Warpriest” earlier in the offering, but the highlight of Book of Wyrms‘ second album, Remythologizer (on Twin Earth & Stoner Witch Records) has to be the closing “Dust Toad,” which at 9:25 is the longest track and the slowest crawl included. Led into by the synth-infused “Curse of the Werecop,” it takes the crunch that showed itself through opener “Autumnal Snow” and, later, the melody and swing of “Undead Pegasus” — as seen on the cover art — and brings them together in order to perfectly summarize the doom rocking ethic the Richmond, Virginia, four-piece are working from. Tonally righteous and more solvent in their songwriting than they were on their 2017 debut, Sci-Fi/Fantasy (review here), the band sound assured as they move in “Spirit Drifter” from a standout keyboard line to a likewise standout guitar solo, giving a feeling of progressive nuance that’s continuing to take hold in their sound, balanced by the underlying naturalism of their approach. That dynamic continues to duke it out on Remythologizer, much to the benefit of anyone who takes the record on.

Book of Wyrms on Thee Facebooks

Twin Earth Records on Bandcamp

Stoner Witch Records BigCartel store

 

Möyhy-Veikot, Huume Jet Set Life

moyhy-veikot huume jet set life

Too weird for planet earth and, well, probably too weird for anywhere else too, Helsinki psych-space-kraut-whathaveyou experimentalists issue their third tape in the form of Huume Jet Set Life and whether it’s the cosmo-jamming on “MITÄ ON TULLUT VEDETTYÄ?” or the who-the-hell-knows-what-ism of “MEDIA-AJOJAHTI 2000,” the band at no point fail to make an impression of being out there in the far gone far out there reaches of the far out there. Talkin’ freaked out next level total, like the cassette just fell into the atmosphere to represent some other planet’s culture where things are both dangerous and interesting and you never really know if you’re going to get laid or eaten or both. Still, they may be doing math of the likes not yet conceived by humanity, but Möyhy-Veikot go about it in suitably friendly if totally over-the-top fashion, and it’s fun to play along while also being completely overwhelmed at the various pushes and pulls happening all at once, the media samples and the Windows 95 compatibility of it all. It’s one small step for man, one giant leap for disco.

Möyhy-Veikot on Thee Facebooks

Möyhy-Veikot on Bandcamp

 

Darsombra, Transmission

Darsombra Transmission

It’s just lovely. Really. In some ways it feels like the 41:20 single-track full-length Transmission — self-released, no less — is what Baltimore ambient exploratory two-piece Darsombra have been building toward all along, but I think the truth is they probably could’ve done this at any time if they’d chosen to do so. Still, the fluidity of “Transmission” itself is something special, with its cascades of manipulated voice, riffs that swell and recede, loops, synth and somehow-manifested light that are as much immersion for the spirit as the eardrum. One doesn’t want to dive too deep into hyperbole and oversell it to the point of dulling the listener’s own impression, but Transmission is the kind of record that even those who profess to never “get” drone or noise offerings can engage with. Part of that is owed to Brian Daniloski‘s guitar, which provides landmarks along the path of swirl conjured by his own effects and the synth from Ann Everton (both add vocals where applicable; don’t look for lyrics or verses) that allow those who’d take it on to do so more easily. But the real joy in Transmission is letting go and allowing the piece to carry you along its progressive course, genuine in its reaching for the unknown. Plus there’s a gong, and that’s always fun too. Go with it.

Darsombra on Thee Facebooks

Darsombra on Bandcamp

 

Set Fire, Traya

set fire traya

Traya is the third three-song full-length from Boston’s Set Fire, and it would seem that, and in addition to marking the last recording to feature drummer Rob Davol, who’s since been replaced by Josh Cronin, it would seem to show the three-piece nailing their sound of classic-tinged duet-fronted heavy rock and roll. With two powerhouse vocalists on board in guitarist Jim Healey (We’re all Gonna Die, Black Thai, etc.) and keyboardist Jess Collins (ex-Mellow Bravo), they work in varying arrangements across a meager 12-minute run that feels short mostly because it is short. Too short. “Any Place Left” puts Collins in the foreground, while “Sacred Song” is more Healey‘s, and unsurprisingly to anyone who’s experienced their past work either together or separate, they’re more than able to carry the material — only more so with the other party backing. “Waves” brings them together around theatrical layers of piano and keyboard and guitar, and that they manage to hold it steady at all, let alone take flight as it does, speaks to how ready they are to embark on a longer offering. Put out an album, already, would ya?

Set Fire on Thee Facebooks

Set Fire on Bandcamp

 

Jesus the Snake, Black Acid, Pink Rain

Jesus the Snake Black Acid Pink Rain

For those feeling adventurous, Portugal’s Jesus the Snake follow-up their 2017 self-titled EP (review here) with the unmitigated warmth of Black Acid, Pink Rain, their live-recorded full-length debut. And for the sort of heavy psych-jazz-prog meandering, one would almost expect the organ-laced instrumentalist four-piece to track the record as they perform it, if not front-to-back then certainly one song at a time across multiple takes. Not one piece of the five total on the 49-minute offering is under eight minutes long, and sandwiched between opener “Karma” (10:28) and the closing title-track (10:55) are three cuts circa nine that prove no less hypnotic. The beginning of “Floyds I” is so fluid with the interplay of organ and guitar that one almost expects a gentle Portuguese spoken word verse to start, but of course one never does. Instead, Jesus the Snake complement mindful drift with flashes of more weighted or active fare, all the while holding to a central vibe that is peaceful even as “Duna” finds its chill before the halfway point, with no loss of spirit in the process.

Jesus the Snake on Thee Facebooks

Jesus the Snake on Bandcamp

 

Föllakzoid, I

follakzoid i

As with any kind of sonic minimalism or release based around trance induction — see Darsombra above — there’s a certain amount of buy-in that needs to happen on the listener’s side. Accordingly, those going into the fourth LP from Chilean duo Föllakzoid, titled I and issued through Sacred Bones Records as a double-vinyl, should be aware that it’s requires that kind of interaction from one side to the other. It’s not especially loud or abrasive, or even demanding in terms of the basic sonics of the thing, but as “I” becomes “II” becomes “III” becomes “IIII” and the songs such as they are alternate between 17- and 13-minute runtimes and the blend of effects and electro beats tips to one side or the other — “II” with a fervent ‘ump-tis’ in its early going while “III” brings a more Vangelis-style cinematic wash — of course there’s an ask in terms of indulgence happening on the part of the two-piece to their audience. Whether an individual is willing to make that jump is obviously going to be up to their headspace and where they’re at, but Föllakzoid‘s work here is more than worth the investment, even for those less familiar with their methods.

Föllakzoid on Thee Facebooks

Sacred Bones Records website

 

Dresden Wolves, Hiedra – Sencillo

dresden wolves Hiedra Sencillo

The sub-three-minute “Hiedra – Sencillo” is the latest in an ongoing series of digital offerings from Mexico City’s Dresden Wolves, and though the two-piece band bill themselves as post-punk and they may actually have a history in playing punk rock — stranger things have happened, certainly — the song finds them working in a taut heavy rock context, brash in delivery but not overly so as to lose the overarching swagger they seem intent on conveying. Particularly as it follows behind two EPs and a swath of other single tracks, and is offered name-your-price through their Bandcamp, “Hiedra – Sencillo” feels like its most nefarious aim is to hook anyone who’d click play on first listen and try and keep them intrigued for next time out. Fair enough. I won’t profess to know what Dresden Wolves‘ plans are, but they’ve got songwriting in their pocket and the production on “Hiedra – Sencillo” is crisp and clear enough to convey the heft of the guitar but not so much so as to dull its rawer aspects. They’ve got the balance ready to go, whatever they might choose to do with it from here.

Dresden Wolves on Thee Facebooks

Dresden Wolves on Bandcamp

 

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Darsombra Mega-Tour Starts Next Week; New Transmission Trailer Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 22nd, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Oh, you think you tour a lot? Well, Darsombra think that’s adorable. Next week, they’ll head out on what’s only their latest string of impossible-looking tour dates, running up through the Northeast and into and across Canada and then back through the Midwest in a way that makes me think there’s probably a specifically Californian string of dates to come, and knowing Darsombra — who are based as much “on earth” as they are in Baltimore — it’ll probably run for a month straight. The duo’s new album, Transmission, is up for preorder now direct from their website or Bandcamp, and they’ve got a new trailer for it posted as of pretty much when I post this, that I’m pretty sure was filmed at a haunted house. Neat. The album, of course, is one long track, so you’re getting about 1/45th of it here, but still, it’s a good 1/45th. Mark it a win and then go a show and buy all the merch.

Here’s where they’ll be:

darsombra

Darsombra’s 2019 album, “Transmission” is almost here!!! Preorder is available at www.darsombra.com and www.darsombra.bandcamp.com. Or come out and see us and get a copy in person, in any of the following places:

July 31 – Cleveland OH @ Magalen
Aug 1 – Toronto ON @ Sneaky Dee’s
Aug 2 – Buffalo NY – Infringement Festival @ Nietzsche’s
Aug 3 – Buffalo NY – Infringement Festival @ Hickory Urban Sanctuary
Aug 5 – Rochester NY @ Bug Jar
Aug 6 – Albany NY @ Pauly’s Hotel
Aug 7 – Providence RI @ AS220
Aug 8 – Boston MA @ O’Brien’s
Aug 9 – Portland ME @ Geno’s
Aug 10 – Littleton NH @ Loading Dock
Aug 11 – Burlington VT @ Junktiques
Aug 13 – Montreal QC @ Casa Del Popolo
Aug 15 – Ottawa ON @ Pressed
Aug 16 – Sudbury ON @ The Asylum
Aug 17 – Sault Ste Marie ON @ New American
Aug 20 – Thunder Bay ON @ The Apollo
Aug 22 – Winnipeg MB @ Times Changed
Aug 23 – Regina SK @ German Club
Aug 24 – Saskatoon SK @ Amigo’s
Aug 25 – Edmonton AB @ 9910
Aug 26 – Calgary AB @ Dickens
Aug 28 – Kelowna BC @ Milkcrate Records
Aug 29 – Vancouver BC @ Avant Garden
Aug 30 – Nanaimo BC @ The Cambie
Aug 31 – Victoria BC @ Vinyl Envy
Sept 4 – Olympia WA @ Cryptatropa
Sept 5 – Seattle WA @ Lofi
Sept 6 – Salem OR @ The Space Concert Club
Sept 7 – Portland OR @ High Water Mark
Sept 10 – Boise ID @ The Olympic
Sept 12 – Bozeman MT @ Filling Station
Sept 13 – Billings MT @ Kirks’ Grocery
Sept 14 – Rapid City SD @ Cave Collective
Sept 18 – Sioux Falls SD @ Total Drag
Sept 19 – Minneapolis MN @ Kitty Cat Club
Sept 20 – Duluth MN @ Blush
Sept 21 – Marquette MI @ The Crib
Sept 23 – Milwaukee WI @ Cactus Club
Sept 25 – Rock Island IL @ Rozz-Tox
Sept 26 – Peoria IL @ Trailside Event Center
Sept 27 – Chicago IL @ Charm School
Sept 28 – Detroit MI @ Trumbullplex
Sept 29 – Pittsburgh PA @ 3577 Studios
Oct 5 – Baltimore MD – Mushroom City Arts Festival @ Gwynns Falls Leakin Park

http://facebook.com/darsombra
https://www.instagram.com/darsombra/
http://www.darsombra.com/

Darsombra, Transmission trailer #3 premiere

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Darsombra to Release New Album Transmission in August

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 28th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

The only real surprise here is that Darsombra were at some point off the road long enough to record an album. The Baltimorean experimentalist two-piece tend to tour for months, not days or weeks, at a time, and as they make ready to release Transmission, that seems like it’s not about to change. Their psychedelic noise, drone wash and tonal breadth was last manifest in the studio with 2016’s Polyvision (review here), and they’ve already been to Europe this year, and a US tour is planned to surround Transmission‘s arrival that will likely just be one in a series by the time they’re ready to move forward again. Some groups are just nomadic. I think it’s easier when you don’t have to move drums, though a keyboard and video equipment doesn’t exactly seem easy either.

There’s a teaser streaming for Transmission that you can see at the bottom of this post, as well as the Polyvision stream just because it’s there on Bandcamp and accessible for consumption. Please feel free to dig in.

From the PR wire:

darsombra

DARSOMBRA: Baltimore Psychedelic Duo To Release Transmission LP In August; Trailer Posted + North American Tour Being Booked

Baltimore, Maryland-based psychedelic/experimental duo DARSOMBRA has completed their fifth full-length album, titled Transmission. Following a long line of releases through a vast network of underground labels since 2006, Transmission is being handled entirely by the band to be issued on multiple formats in August, during the band’s latest extensive North American tour surrounding its release.

Uniting Brian Daniloski on guitar, vocals, and effects, and Ann Everton on synthesizer, vocals, gong, and visuals, DARSOMBRA is a transcendental and emotive experience. Live, they create a symbiotic audio-video involvement that creates a temporary reality, woven by sight, sound, and movement. These psychedelic and transcendental characteristics are transferred to record as closely as possible.

Prolifically touring for well over a decade, DARSOMBRA has performed throughout North America, Asia, and Europe, at music venues, dive bars, house shows, galleries, festivals, city ruins, and storage units, as well as their legendary pop-up generator shows at national monuments, or just by the side of the road. Their expansive sound finds them fitting on all kinds of bills. They are equally at home on a metal or psych show as they are on a noise or experimental bill.

Following releases on labels in the US, Germany, Malaysia, and Indonesia, including At A Loss, Public Guilt, Exile On Mainstream, Translation Loss, and Noise Bombing, DARSOMBRA is self-releasing their impending 2019 album, Transmission, on LP, CD, cassette, and digital download in August, while on tour across Canada and the US.

Watch for the Transmission cover art, preorder links for all formats, the massive impending tour itinerary, and much more from DARSOMBRA to be announced and posted in the days ahead and through the coming months.

http://facebook.com/darsombra
https://www.instagram.com/darsombra/
http://www.darsombra.com/

Darsombra, Transmission teaser

Darsombra, Polyvisions (2016)

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Darsombra European Tour Starts March 29

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

Like most of us, Darsombra are always somewhere, but unlike most of us, the places they are tend to change with exceptional regularity. Last Fall, they were out west for more than a month. Already this year, they’ve made quick stops through the Southeast, and later this month they’ll head to Europe for a stint that looks like it’s at least going to be a month in a half long already and for which they’re still filling in dates. They go, and go, and go. They’ll be playing Exile on Mainstream‘s 20th anniversary party in Leipzig on April 4, and the SWR Barroselas Metalfest in Portugal on April 28, but there’s plenty to still come together around both. You know the drill: if you have a spot where it’s cool to make noise, you should let Darsombra do that. I can’t think of a bill they wouldn’t fit on, because really, they don’t fit anywhere and that’s the point. So whether it’s a night of singer-songwriter coffee-house stuff or grindcore, book Darsombra. Because they’re awesome and it’s the right thing to do.

Dates thus far confirmed follow here, courtesy of the band’s social media:

darsombra euro tour

Here are the dates so far!!! More to be added!!!

DARSOMBRA EUROPE TOUR 2019

29 Mar Leuven BELGIUM @ Flugzeug Music-Art-Design
30 Mar Antwerp BELGIUM @ Palazzo sessions
1 Apr Cologne GERMANY @ Halle am Rhein
2 Apr Berlin GERMANY @ Zukunft am Ostkreuz
4 Apr Leipzig GERMANY – 20 Years of Exile On Mainstream festival
9 Apr Potsdam GERMANY @ Archiv
10 Apr Hamburg GERMANY @ Hafenklang
13 Apr Nuremburg GERMANY @ Z-Bau
17 Apr Maribor SLOVENIA @ Kibla
18 Apr Treviso ITALY @ Krach Club
19 Apr Milan ITALY @ Ligera
23 Apr Móra d’Ebre SPAIN @ Societat Obrera Móra d’Ebre
24 Apr Madrid SPAIN @ Rock Palace
26 Apr Lisbon PORTUGAL @ Zaratan
28 Apr Barroselas PORTUGAL @ SWR Barroselas Metalfest 22
2 May Paris FRANCE @ La Cantine De Belleville
5 May Newcastle Upon Tyne UK @ Cluny 2
6 May Inverness UK @ Tooth and Claw
8 May Glasgow UK @ BLOC
11 May Bristol UK @ The Cube
12 May London UK @ The Islington

http://facebook.com/darsombra
https://www.instagram.com/darsombra/
http://www.darsombra.com/
https://www.facebook.com/TranslationLossRecords/
https://translationlossrecords.bandcamp.com/
translationlossrecords.bigcartel.com/

Darsombra, Polyvision (2016)

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Darsombra Announce West Coast Tour

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 2nd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

darsombra

I’ll in no way claim to keep up with posts on everything Darsombra do. How could I? They spend more time on the road than the entire rosters of some labels. To wit, they just wrapped a run through Southeast Asia — because of course they did — and head out in less than two weeks on their next stint, this one through the American Midwest and West Coast. I don’t know if that counts as a homecoming or not, since ostensibly they’re from Baltimore, but I guess they’ll at least have enough time to do some laundry and put gas in their van before they head out again. They just keep going. It’s astounding.

They’re still supporting 2016’s two-song LP, Polyvision (review here), but I think even more than that, they’re just supporting the idea of open creativity itself and trying to put that in front of as many people as possible. They’ll hit everyone sooner or later.

For now, here’s where they’re headed next:

darsombra US tour

Hello America!

We still have a few shows in Indonesia before we come home. Then in a couple of weeks we hit the road again. This time we’re touring the U.S. and coming to some places that we haven’t been to in a few years!

Oct 12 – Pittsburgh PA @ Black Forge
Oct 13 – Dayton OH @ Blind Bob’s
Oct 14 – Indianapolis IN @ Melody Inn
Oct 15 – Bloomington IN @ Blockhouse
Oct 16 – Peoria IL @ Peoria Pizza Works
Oct 17 – Rock Island IL @ Rock Island Supper Club
Oct 18 – Lincoln NE @ 2SMOO
Oct 19 – Laramie WY @ The Great Untamed
Oct 20 – Denver CO @ Seventh Circle Music Collective
Oct 21 – Colorado Springs CO @ Triple Nickel
Oct 26 – Flagstaff AZ @ Flagstaff Brewing Company
Oct 27 – Prescott AZ @ Mousetrap
Nov 1 – Arcata CA @ Richards’ Goat Tavern
Nov 2 – San Francisco CA @ Space Bar Headquarters
Nov 3 – Pomona CA @ 57 Underground
Nov 6 – Tucson AZ @ Galactic Center
Nov 7 – Bisbee AZ @ The Quarry Bisbee
Nov 9 – Albuquerque NM @ Sister Bar
Nov 10 – Amarillo TX @ 806
Nov 12 – Dallas TX @ RBC
Nov 13 – Oklahoma City OK @ The Root
Nov 14 – Kansas City MO @ Record Bar
Nov 15 – Topeka KS @ The Boobie Trap Bar
Nov 16 – Lawrence KS @ Replay Lounge
Nov 17 – Louisville KY @ house show
Nov 18 – Morgantown WV @ 123 Pleasant

http://facebook.com/darsombra
https://www.instagram.com/darsombra/
http://www.darsombra.com/
https://www.facebook.com/TranslationLossRecords/
https://translationlossrecords.bandcamp.com/
translationlossrecords.bigcartel.com/

Darsombra, Live in Indonesia, Sept. 18, 2018

Darsombra, Polyvisions (2016)

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Darsombra Summer Tour Starts this Week

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 3rd, 2017 by JJ Koczan

If you’re of the belief that sonic resonance can affect those who experience it on a spiritual level, or if you’re looking to be convinced of same, I can only recommend you open your mind as wide as it will open and then go see Darsombra, as the Baltimore duo stand among the best arguments I can think of in that regard. Further, there are few live acts I’ve had the pleasure of watching who so clearly revel in the process of what they’re creating on stage and presenting what they have created, and accordingly, it’s hard not to be swept up in that joy as it hits in swells and waves of drone and experimentalist guitar, keys, percussion, vocals, visuals, and so on. Simply put, it is something you should witness for yourself if you can.

And Darsombra, who tour almost incessantly and released their latest album last year in the form of the two-song Polyvision (review here) via Translation Loss Records, are not stingy when it comes to giving opportunities to do so. This week, they head out across the US and Canada on a month-plus run that will take them through the end of August, and no doubt the next tour is already in the works for when they get back. In the meantime, note the dates in the Pacific Northwest with Thrones (aka Joe Preston) and YOB‘s Mike Scheidt. Righteous company to keep.

Dates follow here, and really, if you can, go:

darsombra photo matt condon

Darsombra – Canada / U.S. summer tour 2017 • 7/5-8/31

Our tour for summer 2017 kicks off [this] week! Please check back closer to dates as changes may occur.

July 5 – Bethpage NY @ Mr. Berry’s w/ Ruckzuck, Claire Raby, Richard Arriaga
July 6 – Allston MA @ O’Brien’s w/ Planet of Adventure, The Modern Voice
July 7 – Manchester NH @ House Show w/ Green Bastard, Lunar Locust
July 8 – Portland ME @ Geno’s w/ All Night, Cadaverette, Apis Malfiore
July 10 – Halifax, NS @ Menz & Mollyz w/ Brett Waye, Hemineglect
July 11 – Moncton NB @ Plan B w/ Gemstonez, The Continuance, Våras
July 13 – Montreal QC @ Casa Del Popolo w/ Pachyderm, Eliza
July 14 – Ottawa ON @ The Record Centre w/ The Visit, Raphael Weinroth-Browne, Heather Sita Black
July 15 – Toronto ON @ The Cavern
July 16 – Sudbury ON @ The Asylum
July 17 – Sault Ste. Marie ON @ New American w/ Pointless, Bizotic
July 19 – Thunder Bay ON @ The Apollo w/ Road Waves
July 20 – Winnipeg MB @ Handsome Daughter w/ Mahogany Frog, Scab Smoker
July 21 – Regina SK @ Cloud 9 w/ The League of One, Robot Hive
July 22 – Saskatoon SK @ Amigo’s w/ Hoopsnake, Black Thunder, The Switching Yard
July 23 – Edmonton AB @ Bohemia w/ Faith Crisis
July 27 – Calgary AB @ Nite Owl w/ Bridal Party
July 29 – Vancouver BC @ 333 Clark (Half Satan)
July 30 – Nanaimo BC @ White Room w/ Crotch, El Hombre Al Aqua
July 31 – Victoria BC @ Vinyl Envy w/ Scars & Scarves
Aug 3 – Olympia WA @ McCoy’s w/ Thrones, Teach Me Equals
Aug 4 – Seattle WA @ Highline w/ Thrones, Teach Me Equals, Noise-A-Tron
Aug 5 – Portland OR @ The Know w/ Thrones, Stöller, Mike Scheidt
Aug 6 – Salem OR @ Fifty Pub & Grub w/ Thrones, Mike Scheidt
Aug 9 – Eugene OR @ Old NIck’s w/ Mike Scheidt
Aug 10 – Bend OR @ Third St. Pub
Aug 11 – Boise ID @ The Shredder w/ Desert Graves, Brett Netson
Aug 12 – Missoula MT
Aug 17 – Bozeman MT @ Filling Station
Aug 19 – Rapid City SD @ Black Hills Vinyl
Aug 22 – Sioux Falls SD @ Total Drag
Aug 23 – Minneapolis MN @ Kitty Cat Club w/ Comets ov Cupid, Magnetic Ghost, RYKYGNYZYR
Aug 24 – Duluth MN @ Red Herring
Aug 25 – Marquette MI @ Women’s Federated Clubhouse w/ Terminal Orchestra, The God Eaters
Aug 26 – Milwaukee WI @ Circle A w/ The Old Northwest
Aug 27 – Chicago IL @ Subterreanean Downstairs w/ Andy Slater, Cascader, Byzmuti
Aug 29 – Detroit MI @ Trumbullplex
Aug 30 – Cleveland OH @ The Magalen w/ Blind Spring, Dead Peasant Insurance
Aug 31 – Pittsburgh PA @ Black Forge w/ Bear Skull, The Van Allen Belt
Sept 22 (rain date Sept 23) – Baltimore MD @ Leakin Park w/ Marian McLaughlin

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Darsombra, Polyvisions (2016)

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Darsombra, Polyvision: Dronenlightenment (Plus Full Album Stream)

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on August 25th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

darsombra polyvision

[Click play above to stream Darsombra’s Polyvision in full. Album is out Sept. 9 on Translation Loss.]

Last year, Baltimorean experimentalist duo Darsombra went on tour. Pretty much for the whole year. They played well over 100 shows on what they dubbed the “Three Legged Monster” tour — it took place over the course of three separate legs — and they played plenty of other shows besides. That nomadic existence seems to feed into the sense of revelry and freedom that one finds in listening to Polyvision, the two-piece’s latest studio full-length for Translation Loss Records and first since 2012’s Climax Community. Or at least that’s easy enough to read into the outing’s two extended, multi-movement component tracks, “Underworld” (21:45) and “From Insects… to Aliens (The Worms Turn)” (22:31).

Guitarist/keyboardist Brian Daniloski and keyboardist/vocalist/visual effects creator Ann Everton bring a clear sense of composition to both pieces, but there’s an undercurrent of improvisation atop which the building layers of samples, loops, synth and effects create their swirl, and where so much of drone/noise is hell-bent on post-apocalyptic desolation, the creation of all-gray spaces, Darsombra offer a full spectrum of sonic color across Polyvision. Moreover, there are moments where they sound truly and genuinely playful in what they do, Daniloski‘s guitar or the keys winding around celebratory figures in one track or the other, bringing about a spontaneous feeling moment of arrival — “We’re here now and isn’t it great here?” — that also would seem to fit with the presented-as-being-completely-on-a-whim turn to nomadic living that the band made in 2015. Have drone, will travel, will be glad to end up wherever.

That’s a simplification of the mindset, obviously, but the underlying point is that Polyvision feels unafraid to embrace joy as it moves through its complex and ritualized-feeling soundscapes. Not that it doesn’t also have its foreboding stretches, as any even vaguely drone release with a low tone will — soundtracks have conditioned us to hear things a certain way, even subconsciously — but though its two titles are somewhat dark in their themes, with the creepy vibe and strangeness of the construction of “From Insects… to Aliens (The Worms Turn)” and an “Underworld” traditionally being a place not known for its pleasant afternoons, it’s not long into Polyvision before Daniloski and Everton are exploring colorful, rich textures.

darsombra

It’s still fair to call Darsombra instrumental, but vocals do play a large role in setting the vibe, and that happens relatively quickly in the first movement of “Underworld”; voices almost choral loop in with undulating volume swells, fading in and out again, moving toward an end just before the five-minute mark where all goes quiet before the next wave starts with what seems to be both their voices leading to the establishing of a slow, patient rhythmic guitar figure around which the keys and a brightly progressive and extended guitar lead unfold. It’s here, making its way toward and past the midpoint of “Underworld” that Polyvision first and perhaps most effectively conveys the joy at root in its creation. It finds itself in a bouncing, almost child-like section of fuzzed-out keys and guitar — still with that original rhythm beneath; it doesn’t leave just yet — that receives due exploration before giving way to rolling waves, which is how “Underworld” ends. At the ocean. I’d assume that’s a field recording from the band, rather than a keyboard sample, but never fully knows. In either case, it’s hypnotic and signifies the kind of perpetualness Darsombra are looking to convey in their material as well as a peaceful moment to collect oneself before moving onto the second, longer track.

“From Insects… to Aliens (The Worms Turn)” finds itself building layers of proggy guitar, more active, more intense, with washes of cymbal added for effect in the first couple minutes. A swirling solo takes hold and winds its way into another seemingly simplistic progression around eight minutes in, but it gives way to lower rumbling undertones, if only momentarily before the guitar surges forward again. Though only part of Darsombra‘s broad approach, Daniloski‘s lead work isn’t to be undervalued. Aside from being technically proficient, it brings a rare spontaneity to what might commonly be thought of as a drone or noise record, neither of which is a style known for working off the cuff, adding to the atmosphere of positivity and basking in the spirit of an apparently ceaseless creative drive. Just past 15 minutes, Everton begins a vocal loop that is ultimately the introduction to the final movement of “From Insects… to Aliens (The Worms Turn)” and after a final crash of guitar, she’s backed by noise that indeed sounds like and may or may not be bugs, like crickets at night something from the forest.

That Darsombra would choose to end both of Polyvision‘s cuts with nature sounds — granted in the closer the human voice is still more prominent in its long fadeout — and one can’t help but wonder in light of the album’s title if the band isn’t trying to see multiple sides, and trying to show their audience multiple sides, of how humans interact with the world around them. Of course that’s speculation on my part, but if you take anything from it, take it as a sign of the depth of the evocation that the duo enact over the course of the album’s 44 minutes. If what they gleaned from those 100-plus days on the road together are the lessons they seem to be teaching here, then their time was well spent.

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