Days of Rona: Nick DiSalvo of Elder

Posted in Features on March 30th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

The statistics of COVID-19 change with every news cycle, and with growing numbers, stay-at-home isolation and a near-universal disruption to society on a global scale, it is ever more important to consider the human aspect of this coronavirus. Amid the sad surrealism of living through social distancing, quarantines and bans on gatherings of groups of any size, creative professionals — artists, musicians, promoters, club owners, techs, producers, and more — are seeing an effect like nothing witnessed in the last century, and as humanity as a whole deals with this calamity, some perspective on who, what, where, when and how we’re all getting through is a needed reminder of why we’re doing so in the first place.

Thus, Days of Rona, in some attempt to help document the state of things as they are now, both so help can be asked for and given where needed, and so that when this is over it can be remembered.

Thanks to all who participate. — JJ Koczan

elder nick disalvo

Days of Rona: Nick DiSalvo of Elder (Germany)

How are you dealing with this crisis as a band? Have you had to rework plans at all? How is everyone’s health so far?

I don’t think a pandemic would ever come at a “convenient” time, but since we’re releasing a new album at the end of April and had tours lined up for the next half-year following that, it’s causing some problems. We’re rescheduling the concerts coming up soonest and taking the rest on a wait-and-see basis. Thankfully, that’s our biggest problem and everyone is healthy. Jack continues to work in a very public space, being an ‘essential worker’, but so far so good.

What are the quarantine/isolation rules where you are?

In Germany, currently we’re allowed to move freely but with a few restrictions. Groups of over two people aren’t allowed in public or private, nonessential businesses are closed and everyone is predictably advised to stay in unless absolutely necessary. In Massachusetts, I believe it’s similar.

How have you seen the virus affecting the community around you and in music?

There’s a general sense of unwellbeing in the city. Supermarkets are eerie, streets are mostly empty. Needless to say the clubs and bands here are facing the same crises as elsewhere, but there is at least funding being freed up for artists by the state. I’ve seen an uptick in kind messages and bits of support in the way of merch sales and downloads, which is heartening. People are helping out where they can – I mean, except for the super-rich and corporations, etc.

What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything?

Well, we’re fine. Things like this put your problems into perspective, even as they are creating them. We might have to cancel tours and lose money/momentum as a band, but people are suffering and dying by the thousands and it will only get worse.

http://facebook.com/elderofficial
https://www.instagram.com/elderband/
http://armageddonshop.com
https://www.stickman-records.com/

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The Obelisk Show on Gimme Radio Playlist: Episode 30

Posted in Radio on March 20th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

the obelisk show banner

There’s some stuff here that was recently premiered — Moura, King Buffalo, the Thunderbird Divine track that went up today — but I’m also bringing in a few things from the Quarterly Review that I’ve got slated for next week. That’s stuff I haven’t had the chance to write about yet like Mindcrawler and Lemurian Folk Songs, Ritual King and Dystopian Future Movies. I know I’m biased here and I always say this — if you dig back through the old podcasts, I used to say it about those too, but I think it’s a pretty good show.

It was a little weird cutting voice tracks for it yesterday though, I’ll say that. Yeah, it’s awesome new music and that’s always great to be excited about, but it feels a little lightweight to be stoked on cool songs when there’s a pandemic on and obviously bigger issues at play. The way I look at it is music is ultimately that escape that people need and if I can maybe give someone something they haven’t heard before and might dig, then I guess that’s not nothing. It ain’t driving a truck for Meals on Wheels when it comes to lending a hand — I should be doing that shit, as should we all, all the time — but it’s what I’ve got, anyhow.

Thanks for listening if you do, and if you see this and don’t listen, then thanks just for reading.

The Obelisk Show airs 5PM Eastern today at http://gimmeradio.com

Full playlist:

The Obelisk Show – 03.20.20

Moura Ronda das Mafarricas Moura*
Dozer Rising Call it Conspiracy (2020 Reissue)*
Lord Fowl Fire Discipline Glorious Babylon*
Ritual King Dead Roads Ritual King*
BREAK
Thunderbird Divine The Hand of Man The Hand of Man*
Mindcrawler Dead Space Lost Orbiter*
Elder Omens Omens*
Arbouretum Let it All In Let it All In*
BREAK
Dystopian Future Movies Countenance Inviolate*
Lord Buffalo Raziel Tohu Wa Bohu*
Lemurian Folk Songs Logos Logos*
Sorcia Stars Collide Sorcia*
BREAK
King Buffalo Red Star Pt. 1 & 2 Dead Star EP*

The Obelisk Show on Gimme Radio airs every Friday 5PM Eastern, with replays Sunday at 7PM Eastern. Next new episode is April 3 (subject to change). Thanks for listening if you do.

Gimme Radio website

The Obelisk on Thee Facebooks

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Freak Valley 2020 Adds Elder, Beastwars, Sunnata & More; Official Poster Art Unveiled

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 10th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

freak valley 2020 banner

Freak Valley 2020 has revealed its official poster art, once again contributed by Sebastian Jerke who has done the past I-don’t-know-how-many-years. It’s a kind of deer-fox-wolf-dragon-warthog beast that, well, if you look to long at it might just haunt your dreams, but is unquestionably exquisite in its detail and creativity. From the forked tongue to the fact that it’s holding a tattered black flag and the logo of the festival like a trophy it just won for Most Horrifying Thing With Feathers, it’s every bit the hoodie-worthy level of work one has come to expect from Jerke, who is no stranger to killing it.

Speaking of killing it — FUCKING BEASTWARS ARE PLAYING FREAK VALLEY. I’m thrilled to say I’ve got my flight booked, and no, I have no clue how to get from the airport in Frankfurt to Siegen, and no, I have no clue where I’m staying when I get there, but hot damn, I’m going to Freak Valley 2020. Thanks so much to the festival for inviting me. This is a trip that has been years in the making and I could not possibly be more stoked on it, not the least because it means I’ll see Beastwars, whose work I’ve spent the last decade being pummeled by. Elder ain’t bad either. Ha.

All kidding aside — of course Elder are amazing blah blah blah — this is a pretty killer round of adds. I wrote the announcement, as I’ve done all the Freak Valley 2020 announcements, and I didn’t know Hank Davison at all, but his stuff is pretty right on, and I felt like having seen Sunnata in Norway last October gave me a distinct advantage in understanding where the band was coming from. Revvnant‘s recently-unveiled single bodes well for that set’s experimentalist bent, and while I won’t give The Great Machine too many points for the title of their most recent album, their stuff is pretty off-the-wall heavy in that kind of what-you-wish-QueensoftheStoneAge-became kind of way. I’ll take that.

So here you go. If you’re going, I’ll see you there:

Freaks, The Countdown Is On!

Every one of these announcements brings us closer to Freak Valley Festival 2020 and we can’t wait to welcome you all. There are some huge names coming to the lineup this time, so let’s get down to business!

Join us in welcoming Elder, Beastwars, Sunnata, The Great Machine, Hank Davison & Friends, and Revvnant!

ELDER

Do they need an introduction? We certainly don’t think so. They stand among the next generation’s most crucial and most progressive heavy acts to be found anywhere. With guitarist/vocalist Nick DiSalvo and new drummer Georg Edert based in Berlin, the four-piece are half German at this point, so maybe we’ll think of them coming to FVF as something like a hometown show! Why not? Their upcoming album, Omens, is out in April and paints a proggy wonderland of heavy riffs and lush melodies like never before, with DiSalvo and Mike Risberg’s guitars and keys fleshing ever further out and Jack Donovan’s bass holding down the band’s inimitable groove. They are one-of-a-kind and stand among the upper echelon of modern heavy. There. How’s that for an introduction?

BEASTWARS

You asked, we answered. Let’s face it, Beastwars coming from New Zealand to play at Freak Valley is a gift we’re giving ourselves as much as we’re presenting them to you. For years, we’ve watched and admired from afar as their crushing riffs resonated from Aus/NZ tour after Aus/NZ tour and when the band broke up following 2016’s ‘The Death of All Things,’ we thought we’d never get the chance to witness them in-person. It was facing mortality that brought them back together for 2019’s ‘IV,’ but their sound was as much a physical sonic force as ever, and their sludge will be even more epic coming from the stage. If you know their albums, you already know why we’re so excited. If not, there’s still time to get yourself educated.

SUNNATA

Those who’ve paid heed to the weighted prog rock/metal of Poland’s Sunnata — whose style is like a plant grown from roots of grunge that reaches out to the stratosphere — can attest to the sense of poise and presence they bring live. Their studio work is melodic and forward thinking, to be sure, and on stage, the band transform themselves as a part of the ritual of playing. It’s not just about headbanging or throwing themselves into the songs, it’s about watching their communion with the material as the play, and thus having your own experience with their work. While avoiding all cult rock cliche, they actually bring a ceremonial feel to each performance, and we know you’ll agree as we bring them to Freak Valley 2020.

THE GREAT MACHINE

From the raging speed-punk of “Bitch Too” to the sprawling nod and crash of “DM II,” Israeli three-piece The Great Machine made one hell of an impression with their 2019 album, ‘Greatestits,’ and we knew there was no way we could let 2020 pass without inviting them back to play Freak Valley Festival for the second time. Maybe you caught them in 2017 as they were supporting their ‘Love’ album — “South West Sugar Rush,” anyone? — but you can still expect something new and off the wall for their return. And anyone else who didn’t see them last time? Yeah, you’re in for a treat.

HANK DAVISON & FRIENDS

You Freaks outside of Germany might not be as familiar, but Hank Davison is an institution when it comes to biker blues. From his days leading the Hank Davison Band to his solo acoustic work and more recently finding a middle ground performing unplugged with Hank Davison & Friends, the man himself brings a sense of outlaw country danger and classic blues to everything he does. At the tender age of 63, Davison sets the standard for badassery everywhere he goes, and you know we love our blues here at Freak Valley, so get ready to get down as the “Face of a Wanted Man” itself comes to our stage for the first time. We promise it’ll be something you’ll be talking about long after the weekend is over.

REVVNANT

Back in 2018, it was with bittersweet joy that we played host to the final gig from Baltimore-based blues rockers The Flying Eyes, whom we loved dearly. Revvnant is a new project spearheaded by Elias Schutzmann (also of Black Lung) that brings him out from behind the drumkit to front the band based around psychedelic and progressive experimentation, analog synth, washes of effects noise, soulful vocals, the occasional bit of death-whistle and more. Joined by keyboardist Trevor Shipley and Burnpilot’s Sidney Yendis on drums, Revvnant seem poised to blow open the doors of perception, and we can’t wait to watch them walk through as they forge their own path forward.

Still more to come!

FREAK VALLEY 2020
No Fillers – Just Killers

https://www.facebook.com/events/2434350453469407/
https://www.facebook.com/freakvalley/
http://www.freakvalley.de/
http://www.rockfreaks.de/

Elder, “Omens”

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Elder Post Omens Cover Art; Preorders Available

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 24th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Well, preorders are up for Elder‘s new album, Omens. I’m not going to tell you I’ve heard the record or anything, but I am going to tell you that it’s the most progressive thing they’ve ever done, and it sets in motion a new stage of the band’s ongoing evolution. They approach and execute it like the veterans they’ve become, and construct their songs with a masterful hand. I’m not telling you I’ve heard it, but I am telling you it’s probably going to be a consensus album of the year for 2020 when December comes.

Cover art has been unveiled today along with the title-track, which is representative of course of the album as a whole and a pretty damn fine way to spend the next 10 minutes of your life.

Dig in:

elder omens

Elder have set an April 24 release date for one of the year’s most eagerly-awaited rock releases… Their 5th full length album: “Omens”.

US preorder link: https://armageddonlabel.bigcartel.com/

EU preorder link: https://www.stickman-records.com/shop/elder-omens/

“To me, Omens is our most complete work to date: a set of songs that express the breadth of the band’s collective influences,” explains singer/guitar player Nick DiSalvo. “After recording The Gold & Silver Sessions EP, it felt like we fully scratched the itch to explore our minimalist side, taking a step back from the proggy song structures and heavy guitar work of our previous records and just letting the music drift along. When beginning to work on Omens, the goal was to integrate these two tendencies in the band – to make a modern day progressive rock record, but also to take time to jam and float when need be. Most importantly, I feel the spirit of adventure in our music is alive and well, and we missed no opportunity to bring in a whole new arsenal of sounds to the record.”

The five song, 54-minute album is a concept album that mimics the lifespan of a civilization, and also reads as a commentary on our own society hell-bent on profitability at the expense of our own lives and environment.

Omens was produced by Peter Deimel (Anna Calvi, The Kills, The Wedding Present) and recorded at Studio Black Box in Noyant-La-Gravoyêre, France. Deimel and DiSalvo mixed the collection.

Elder is Nick DiSalvo (guitar, vocals, keyboards), Jack Donvan (bass), Michael Risberg (guitars, keyboards) and Georg Edert (drums). The New Bedford, Mass. born band have released five full-length studio albums: Elder (2008), Dead Roots Stirring (2011), Lore (2015) and Reflections of a Floating World (2017).

1. Omens
2. In Procession
3. Halcyon
4. Embers
5. One Light Retreating

Elder US 2020 Tour:
May 6 Brooklyn, NY Elsewhere
May 7 Philadelphia, PA Underground Arts
May 8 Richmond, VA Richmond Music Hall
May 9 Asheville, NC Mothlight
May 10 Atlanta, GA The Earl
May 12 Lexington, KY Cosmic Charlies
May 13 Nashville, TN Mercy Lounge
May 14 New Orleans, LA One Eyed Jacks
May 15 Houston, TX Secret Group
May 16 Austin, TX Barracuda
May 17 Dallas, TX Blue Light
May 19 Albuquerque, NM Sister Bar
May 20 Denver, CO Hi Dive
May 22 St. Paul, MN Turf Club
May 23 Chicago, IL Reggie’s
May 24 Cleveland, OH Grog Shop
May 26 Detroit, MI Sanctuary
May 27 Toronto, ON Lee’s Palace
May 28 Montreal, QC Café Campus
May 29 Boston, MA ONCE Ballroom

Tickets are on-sale now. Bask opens on all dates.

http://facebook.com/elderofficial
https://www.instagram.com/elderband/
http://armageddonshop.com
https://www.stickman-records.com/

Elder, “Omens”

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Heavy Psych Sounds Fest 2020 Announces Switzerland Edition with Elder and More

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 3rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

heavy psych sounds fest switzerland

Another week, another city succumbs to the temptation of hosting a Heavy Psych Sounds Festival. This time around it’s Winterthur, Switzerland, and I ask you, how long before franchises are set up in all major urban centers throughout Europe and beyond, and each weekend is a different Heavy Psych Sounds Fest on a constantly-rotating schedule?

And wouldn’t that be kind of awesome?

Of course it helps when you have a heavily touring label roster, but you’ll notice Elder headlining this Swiss edition are not a Heavy Psych Sounds label band, and they’re not the first to take part, but either way, it’s still a good base to draw from. As the HPS and HPS Fest empire expands, the way the different sides work off each other is incredible. In the corporate world they’d call it synergy. In music I think “right on” will probably suffice.

So, right on:

heavy psych sounds fest switzerland

HEAVY PSYCH SOUNDS Announces First Festival Edition In Switzerland! With ELDER, BLACK RAINBOWS, DUEL

Fuzz rock label and booking institution, Heavy Psych Sounds, who specializes in presenting us the best artists of the global heavy psych, doom, fuzz blues and space rock realms, has announced its first festival edition in Switzerland!

While the first HPS Fests were held in Italy, the label has since extended its live reach into the UK, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Austria and even the USA: The underground cult label is not only THE address for all heavy rock record collectors, but has also become an important live and festival contender; with a brisk participation from heavy music fans all over the world.

After the recent HPS Fests in Berlin and Dresden, Germany, that took place in the end of 2019, were sold-out and once again the label festival-caravan is about to take over the Netherlands, Belgium, France and the UK this March, Heavy Psych Sounds is proud to announce their first Swiss edition! Taking place in the early summer on June 5th & 6th 2020 at the Gaswerk in Winterthur, as usual Heavy Psych Sounds is triumphing with an outstanding line-up: Prog-rock overlords ELDER, BLACK RAINBOWS, DUEL, ECSTATIC VISION and many more high class acts will be turning the Swiss edition of the HPS Fest into a psychedelic and heavy sounds wonderland! Tickets and more infos are now available at THIS LOCATION!

Switzerland lineup:
Elder
Black Rainbows
Duel
High Reeper
Ecstatic Vision
Deadsmoke
Oreyeon
1782
No Mute
Hellroom Projectors
Ryte

Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/2625951321025276/

Get ready for a heavy as hell 2020, as the label’s festival series will also take place at the following dates and cities this March, with MONDO GENERATOR, BLACK RAINBOWS, GIÖBIA, DEAD WITCHES & many more:

05.03.2020 FR – Paris / Glazart
06.03.2020 BE – Antwerp / Trix
07.03.2020 UK – London / Underworld
08.03.2020 NL – Deventer / Burgerweeshuis

heavypsychsoundsrecords.bandcamp.com
www.heavypsychsounds.com
https://www.facebook.com/HEAVYPSYCHSOUNDS/

Duel, Valley of Shadows (2019)

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Elder to Release Omens April 24; Tour Dates Announced

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 31st, 2020 by JJ Koczan

elder

Do I even really need to chime in here and say that Elder‘s new album, Omens, probably ranks as the most anticipated release of 2020? I mean, it was before they started recording, simply on the premise that they were working on new material. There’s no audio from it yet, so, you know, take it easy, but presumably they’ll get there. April 24 is the release date and it looks like it’ll once again be out through Armageddon Shop in the US and Stickman Records in Europe, which is how they’ve been rolling for half a decade now since putting out 2015’s Lore (review here) which if you missed it was this site’s pick for album of the decade just ended.

Omens will be the follow-up to the Massachusetts/Germany-based four-piece’s 2017 outing, Reflections of a Floating World (review here), which continued the progressive explorations of its predecessor while exploring a new range of instrumental dynamics. As to what the five tracks of Omens might foretell, we’ll have to wait to find out. The good news is there are now also tour dates to look forward to. With Bask, no less. No doubt the first of many tours to come.

This is a big deal.

From the PR wire:

elder tour

ELDER RELEASE OMENS ON APRIL 24 VIA ARMAGEDDON SHOP

A NORTH AMERICAN SPRING TOUR HAS ALSO BEEN ANNOUNCED

Elder have set an April 24 release date for one of the year’s most eagerly-awaited rock releases: Omens (Armageddon Shop).

In the last dozen years, Elder has stepped out of the shadows of their peers in the heavy rock underground to emerge a unique voice, delivering album after album of almost unparalleled consistency and creativity. Omens, the band’s fifth full-length record, is the newest pillar in the construction of their own musical universe. Across five songs and 54 minutes, Elder further embrace experimentation in their brand of progressive psychedelic rock in which atmosphere, melody and structure are created and transformed again and again.

“To me, Omens is our most complete work to date: a set of songs that express the breadth of the band’s collective influences,” explains singer/guitar player Nick DiSalvo. “After recording The Gold & Silver Sessions EP, it felt like we fully scratched the itch to explore our minimalist side, taking a step back from the proggy song structures and heavy guitar work of our previous records and just letting the music drift along. When beginning to work on Omens, the goal was to integrate these two tendencies in the band – to make a modern day progressive rock record, but also to take time to jam and float when need be. Most importantly, I feel the spirit of adventure in our music is alive and well, and we missed no opportunity to bring in a whole new arsenal of sounds to the record.”

The five song, 54-minute album is a concept album that mimics the lifespan of a civilization, and also reads as a commentary on our own society hell-bent on profitability at the expense of our own lives and environment. Omens was produced by Peter Deimel (Anna Calvi, The Kills, The Wedding Present) and recorded at Studio Black Box in Noyant-La-Gravoyêre, France. Deimel and DiSalvo mixed the collection.

Elder tour dates:
May 6 Brooklyn, NY Elsewhere
May 7 Philadelphia, PA Underground Arts
May 8 Richmond, VA Richmond Music Hall
May 9 Asheville, NC Mothlight
May 10 Atlanta, GA The Earl
May 12 Lexington, KY Cosmic Charlies
May 13 Nashville, TN Mercy Lounge
May 14 New Orleans, LA One Eyed Jacks
May 15 Houston, TX Secret Group
May 16 Austin, TX Barracuda
May 17 Dallas, TX Blue Light
May 19 Albuquerque, NM Sister Bar
May 20 Denver, CO Hi Dive
May 22 St. Paul, MN Turf Club
May 23 Chicago, IL Reggie’s
May 24 Cleveland, OH Grog Shop
May 26 Detroit, MI Sanctuary
May 27 Toronto, ON Lee’s Palace
May 28 Montreal, QC Café Campus
May 29 Boston, MA ONCE Ballroom

Tickets are on-sale now. Bask opens on all dates.

Elder is Nick DiSalvo (guitar, vocals, keyboards), Jack Donovan (bass), Michael Risberg (guitars, keyboards) and Georg Edert (drums).

http://facebook.com/elderofficial
https://www.instagram.com/elderband/
http://armageddonshop.com
https://www.stickman-records.com/

Elder, Reflections of a Floating World (2017)

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Psycho Las Vegas Announces Complete 2020 Lineup; Danzig, Mercyful Fate & Emperor Headlining

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 30th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Psycho Las Vegas 2020 banner style

Danzig doing the Lucifuge record, plus Emperor and Mercyful Fate on US exclusives. In the age of spectacle, Psycho Las Vegas stands apart from its otherwise-might-be peers. There’s a method to all this madness. A plan in action. These people aren’t stupid — this isn’t a stupid lineup, unless you mean “stupid” in an emphatic sense. That’s what Psycho Las Vegas is: emphasis realized. The chaos is the mission. How could there be a more suitable complement to this year, this moment in human history? This is happening at a fucking casino. In Las Vegas. Do you understand what I’m telling you? Do you understand you surreal that is? Repulsion are playing a god damned casino. On a bill with The Flaming Lips and Katatonia. This is your brain on… fire, I guess?

A couple weeks ago — days ago? hours? I have no idea what day it is or why I should be expected to know; I’ve actually set an alarm to post this at the right time in an effort not to screw it up which I probably will anyhow — I happened to have some quick email correspondence with the souls behind the genre-consuming beast of a festival that is Psycho Las Vegas 2020 and I made my BIG PITCH for coverage. Want to know what it was? What it basically boiled down to was, “How about you guys bring me out to the festival and put me up for four days, I take a bunch of mushrooms, maybe go see some bands and write whatever the hell I want?”

Their answer was yes, so that’s my plan. I think Psycho deserves nothing less than me ranting about I don’t know probably cultural decay, self-hate manifest as pretentious judgmentalism, and not eating for four days? Yeah, that sounds good. I’ll go with that.

The schedule isn’t out yet, but it’s clearly a choose-your-adventure festival. For those seeing HOT TIPS from an internet influencer, you’re on the wrong goddamn site. I’m the guy who spent half his morning cleaning up animal piss at his mom’s house. I’ll say though that along with the gargantuan proportion of the headliners — come on, Danzig doing Danzig II is brilliant and you know it — and all the indie, emo and post-hardcore stuff that, yeah okay, I get it, the aughts were a thing for some people (not for me; was too drunk to remember any of it), it’s righteous to see such a huge event in addition to telling Coachella to suck its ass continuing to commit to the heavy underground. My chosen adventure will include but not be limited to placing priority on Lord Buffalo, Blackwater Holylight, Fatso Jetson (of course), Mothership (the context is too good to pass up), Hippie Death Cult and… yes… Katatonia. Because they’re the wintriest band ever and it’ll be 100 degrees. The most Psycho move ever would be to put them on the pool stage. Keeping my fingers crossed that’s how it works out. Shit, put Mayhem out there while we’re at it.

That’s all provided I’m not too out of my mind to leave the hotel room.

Here’s a poster and words in blue. See you there, sort of:

PSYCHO LAS VEGAS 2020 – COMPLETE LINEUP

DANZIG (Celebrating 30 years of “Lucifuge”)
MERCYFUL FATE (2020 USA Exclusive)
EMPEROR (2020 USA Exclusive)
THE FLAMING LIPS
BLUE OYSTER CULT
DOWN (Celebrating 25 years of “Nola”)
BLACK REBEL MOTORCYCLE CLUB
TY SEGALL
WARPAINT
MAYHEM
SATYRICON
WATAIN
BLONDE REDHEAD
HEALTH
OBITUARY
ULVER (2020 USA Exclusive)
KATATONIA
AT THE GATES
POISON THE WELL
TSOL
CROWBAR
EXHORDER
WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM
THURSDAY
PINBACK
ZOLA JESUS
DRAB MAJESTY
BORIS
KING DUDE
PAUL CAUTHEN
AMIGO THE DEVIL
EYEHATEGOD
PIG DESTROYER
REPULSION
IMMOLATION
MIDNIGHT
MGLA
WINDHAND
CURSIVE
BRUTUS
PROFANATICA
LOWER DENS
BLACK JOE LEWIS
INTRONAUT
BOYSETSFIRE
DEATH BY STEREO
CURL UP AND DIE
ADAMANTIUM
THIS WILL DESTROY YOU
KHEMMIS
MOTHERSHIP
GUANTANAMO BAYWATCH
DENGUE FEVER
KAELAN MIKLA
BLACKWATER HOLYLIGHT
FATSO JETSON
WINO (ACOUSTIC)
CREEPING DEATH
MEPHISTOFELES
FRANKIE AND THE WITCH FINGERS
TOKE
FOIE GRAS
FLAVOR CRYSTALS
SILVERTOMB
LORD BUFFALO
WARISH
ALMS
BOMBERS
GLACIAL TOMB
RELAXER
HIPPIE DEATH CULT
VAELMYST
MOTHER MERCURY
DJ SCOTT SELTZER

Psycho Entertainment & MGM Entertainment present PSYCHO SWIM

Lineup:
OLD MAN GLOOM
ELDER
THE SKULL
DEATH VALLEY GIRLS
BLACKWATER HOLYLIGHT
HERE LIES MAN
POLYRHYTHMICS
DJ SCOTT SELTZER

Tickets for PSYCHO LAS VEGAS as well as the PSYCHO SWIM pre-party, which requires a separate ticket from the main festival pass, are on sale now!

Tickets for all PSYCHO LAS VEGAS events can be purchased at VivaPsycho.com or AXS.com.

https://www.facebook.com/events/3255628101138593/
http://www.vivapsycho.com
http://www.facebook.com/psychoLasVegas
http://www.instagram.com/psycholasvegas

Danzig, Danzig II: Lucifuge (1990)

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POLL: The Top 20 Albums of the 2010s — RESULTS!

Posted in Features on January 9th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

top-20-of-2010s-poll-results

A few lessons were learned undertaking The Obelisk’s first end-of-decade poll. Primarily what people’s picks were, but more than that, just how broad the definition of ‘heavy’ has become and how encompassing these ideas are that some of what features on these lists is situated next to each other.

Like any decade, it had its movements and its landmarks, its triumphs and its flameouts, but standing on the other end of it, all I can say is, “Holy shit, that was a lot of riffs.”

And so it was.

I don’t even remember how long this poll ran, but it was a while. It and the top 20 of 2019 poll kind of cannibalized each other in terms of participation, I think, so I wanted to keep it open for a long time in case someone had more to say. One way or the other, considering 10 years of releases is a significant effort. I probably should’ve had it up for the entirety of 2019.

Maybe in 2029. I’m sure by then the site will be run by a much more efficient artificial intelligence anyway and I will have long since uploaded my brainwaves to the cloud, where I’ll live forever as a disembodied wisp.

You know what’s up, so I won’t delay, except to thank everyone who took part in this — and to remind of the rules: At the end, there are two lists, one of the raw votes, and one in which a 1-4 ranking is worth five points, 5-8 worth four, 9-12 worth three, 13-16 worth two and 17-20 worth one.

Here are the lists:

Top 20 of the 2010s — Weighted Results

sleep the sciences

1. Sleep, The Sciences (295 points)
2. Elder, Lore (254)
3. Elder, Dead Roots Stirring (223)
4. Elder, Reflections of a Floating World (201)
5. Graveyard, Hisingen Blues (181)
6. YOB, Clearing the Path to Ascend (161)
7. Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, Blood Lust (155)
7. Om, Advaitic Songs (150)
8. Clutch, Earth Rocker (131)
9. Red Fang, Murder the Mountains (107)
10. Colour Haze, She Said (96)
11. Earthless, From the Ages (92)
12. All Them Witches, Lightning at the Door (91)
13. All Them Witches, Dying Surfer Meets His Maker (87)
14. YOB, Our Raw Heart (85)
15. Baroness, Yellow & Green (79)
16. Clutch, Psychic Warfare (78)
17. Elephant Tree, Elephant Tree (72)
18. Baroness, Purple (70)
18. High on Fire, Snakes for the Divine (70)
19. King Buffalo, Longing to be the Mountain (66)
20. The Sword, Warp Riders (63)

Honorable Mention:
Pallbearer, Foundations of Burden (62)
Monolord, Empress Rising (60)
YOB, Atma (59)
Greenleaf, Rise Above the Meadow (54)
Stoned Jesus, Seven Thunders Roar (54)
Bell Witch, Mirror Reaper (53)

Top 20 of the 2010s — Raw Votes

sleep the sciences

1. Sleep, The Sciences (81 votes)
2. Elder, Lore (64)
3. Elder, Reflections of a Floating World (57)
4. Elder, Dead Roots Stirring (56)
5. Graveyard, Hisingen Blues (49)
6. YOB, Clearing the Path to Ascend (45)
7. Om, Advaitic Songs (43)
7. Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, Blood Lust (43)
8. Clutch, Earth Rocker (37)
9. Red Fang, Murder the Mountains (31)
10. Earthless, From the Ages (28)
11. Baroness, Yellow & Green (25)
11. YOB, Our Raw Heart (25)
12. All Them Witches, Dying Surfer Meets His Maker (24)
12. All Them Witches, Lightning at the Door (24)
12. Colour Haze, She Said (24)
13. Clutch, Psychic Warfare (23)
13. Elephant Tree, Elephant Tree (23)
14. Baroness, Purple (22)
15. High on Fire, Snakes for the Divine (19)
16. King Buffalo, Longing to Be the Mountain (18)
16. Monolord, Empress Rising (18)
17. Monolord, Rust (18)
17. 1000mods, Super Van Vacation (17)
17. Green Lung, Woodland Rites (17)
17. Stoned Jesus, Seven Thunders Roar (17)
17. The Sword, Warp Riders (17)
18. Bell Witch, Mirror Reaper (16)
18. Greenleaf, Rise Above the Meadow (16)
18. High on Fire, Luminiferous (16)
18. King Buffalo, Orion (16)
18. Monolord, No Comfort (16)
18. Truckfighters, Universe (16)
18. Wo Fat, The Black Code (16)
19. Earthless, Black Heaven (15)
20. Kadavar, Abra Kadavar (14)
20. Vista Chino, Peace (14)

Honorable Mention:
Causa Sui, Euporie Tide (13)
Wo Fat, The Conjuring (13)

Notes:

I’m quite sure there were more on the lists with 13 votes than those two in the Honorable Mentions for the raw votes, but for a Top 20 that already features 37 entries, you’ll pardon me if maybe I’m a little less inclined to go hunting. In any case, both lists ultimately paint a similar picture: Sleep and Elder dominated. It’s interesting because if you think about it, one are the established masters and the other represent the next generation. Elder are veterans by now, but it’s in this decade, the 2020s, that their influence is really going to flesh out as bands working in their wake continue to develop, whereas I think it’s fair to say Sleep have already had a monstrous impact on capital-‘h’ Heavy. That dichotomy is fun, but it’s of course just the beginning of the story that unfolds here when one considers the span of years encompassed and the swath of heavy offerings. Note Green Lung getting some love for their 2019 debut. No pressure, chaps. And I don’t think it’s arguable that groups like Earthless, All Them Witches, Graveyard, YOB, Elephant Tree and King Buffalo well earned places on the list. I was glad to see Bell Witch made it too, and some of the repeat offenders like Monoord and High on Fire were of course going to be present and accounted for. It’s a list of the decade’s best records. Of course it’s good.

Thank You

Massive thanks to the nearly 300 — I think the final tally was 293 — people who participated in this poll. It was a lot to consider and I genuinely appreciate the thought and effort people put into making their picks. This was a special one and your being a part of it if you were is incredibly meaningful. If you spent a decade listening to awesome music, I hope you feel excellent about that, because you should.

And of course, thanks for reading as always.

All submitted lists follow here after the jump. Have fun.

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