Friday Full-Length: My Sleeping Karma, My Sleeping Karma

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 13th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

 

If you asked the band, I bet Germany’s My Sleeping Karma would probably think of their 2006 self-titled debut as primitive in some way, at least compared to what’s come after, the way the arrangements stay relatively straightforward and the spiritual themes that would take hold across subsequent releases only beginning to be explored. Maybe they’d be right in that context, but the six-tracker is also the foundation for all that later growth and exploration. More over, it is an album of detail. Listen to the way the drums complement the emphasis on guitar line in “InTENsion” or the counterpoint to the guitar lines that the bass brings in “Glow 11.” The wisp of effects backing the central guitar line in the quiet stretches of second cut “23 Enigma.” The synth line pushing alongside the space rock drive of “Drannel Xu Ilop” and the way eight-minute closer “Eightfold Path” so gracefully unfolds its rolling progression across its early going. Even just the warmth of its tones. Guitar and bass, granted, but how often do you hear drums that sound warm? Recorded by drummer Steffen Weigand, who shared a prior tenure in underrated rockers The Great Escape with bassist Matte Vandeven — that band’s last album, Nothing Happens Without a Dream, came out on Nasoni in 2005 — My Sleeping Karma‘s My Sleeping Karma arrived through Elektrohasch Schallplatten and delivered an aural smoothness the likes of which heavy rock hadn’t heard before. Sure, Weigand, Vandeven, guitarist Seppi and keyboardist Norman Mehren drew form a well of influences in progressive, heavy and psychedelic rock, but their intent toward individuality, even at this moment of outset, is plain to hear in the tracks of their self-titled. And also in everything that’s come since.

I’d dug The Great Escape, played tracks from 2003’s Escape from Reality on college radio, etc., but the arrival of My Sleeping Karma was something on its own wavelength. At the time, much of my frame for heavy psychedelia was based around the also-Germany-based Colour Haze, and fair enough since they were among the principal European forebears of the style, but My Sleeping Karma‘s My Sleeping Karma emphasized how much more there was to say with heavy psych, how it could go to different places and occupy more than one mindset. There was something spiritual about it from the start. In the crucial unfurling of the 9:21 opener and longest track (immediate points) “InTENsion” (9:21), the four-piece from my sleeping karma self titledAschaffenburg created an immersion of the listener that went beyond “setting the tone” in the spirit of so many opening tracks and moved into a genuine sense of creating a mood, finding a headspace and bringing the listener to it. It was heavy in presence and weighted in tone, but peaceful even in its later, driving reaches, as its intended tension came to a head. And from the resonant keyboard lines of “23 Enigma” to the more active jump and shove of “Hymn 72,” My Sleeping Karma worked its way outward from the start, setting up the deep dive that its final three tracks, “Glow 11,” “Drannel Xu Ilop” and “Eightfold Path,” would represent on a clearly purposeful and clearly hypnotic and clearly switched on side B.

The effect of pairing “Glow 11” and “Drannel Xu Ilop” in particular isn’t to be understated. Like having “23 Enigma” and “Hymn 72” back-to-back just at the end of side A, having “Glow 11” into “Drannel Xu Ilop” lead into side B provides the proverbial “meat” of the album in terms of atmosphere — so yes, the meat you can’t see or touch, but meat nonetheless; don’t you touch that intangible meat! — and drawing the listener deeper into the record’s sphere. It’s not just that the songs are both seven-plus minutes long, or remarkably mellow, or hyper-repetitive. In fact they’re none of those things, but together they make up 15 minutes of a 44-minute LP and go a long way toward creating the saga of My Sleeping Karma‘s creative breadth. Their lushness isn’t overbearing — they’re never a wash of tone or effects or crash — but the movement is so fluid within and between them that one almost can’t help but be caught up in their sweep, and even though the payoff of “Drannel Xu Ilop” hearkens back to an earlier riff to make its impact, that impact is only more engaging for the subconscious familiarity of its figure. And as a bookend with “InTENsion,” “Eightfold Path” finishes with a reinforcement not only of the outward cast of My Sleeping Karma as a whole, but of the progressive future that was at the time ahead of the band. Held together by the bassline, a slower, drifting movement brings the track to its finish, not really soft, but subtle in its groove, with just bursts of intensity in the guitar before the last airy exhale comes forward, closing on a suitably meditative note.

My Sleeping Karma would go on to release two more albums through Elektrohasch in 2008’s Satya (review here; discussed here) and 2010’s Tri (review here) before signing to Napalm Records‘ short-lived heavy rock imprint Spinning Goblin Productions that was soon enough folded into Napalm proper for 2012’s Soma (review here), 2015’s Moksha (review here) and the 2017 live album, Mela Ananda — Live (review here). They put in a fair amount of road time in 2018, playing festivals like Desertfest Belgium and Freak Valley, and just last month they put in an appearance at SonicBlast Moledo ahead of touring in November with Stoned Jesus on an Obelisk-presented run (info here) called ‘Sonic Ride’ that has Somali Yacht Club opening the shows. No way that’s not going to be a good time.

I haven’t heard plans about a new album, but even if something’s in the works, it presumably wouldn’t be out until 2019 at this point, which would  mean a five-year stretch between studio My Sleeping Karma offerings, which is by far the longest they’ve ever had. For all I know they’ve got something mastered and there’s a press release in my email right now about it, though. Hang on, I’ll check… nope. Well, I’ll check again in five minutes and see if there’s anything then. Will keep you posted.

In the meantime, as always, I hope you enjoy the self-titled. It had been a while since I last dug into it, and while their style may have become more complex with the 13 years since, there’s no question that My Sleeping Karma knew they wanted their music to be a soulful, expressive experience right from the start. And so it was.

Thanks for reading.

Got that burnout working pretty hard on me this week. All levels. I’ve been reminding myself it’s the start of The Patient Mrs.’ semester. And she’s starting a new job. And I’m probably still tired from the move. And we have a toddler. And no dishwasher. The list goes on. But I also still have projects like Lowrider PostWax liner notes (this weekend is it; tomorrow they’re getting done), Acrimony liner notes (waiting on interviews back, so there’s still some time there), a piece on the art at Høstsabbat I said I’d put together and a press release for a certain New England band of marked impact hanging over my head, and all that stuff is feeling pretty overwhelming, and not in that good Quarterly Review kind of way. Like in the what-the-hell-am-I-doing-this-for kind of way.

Example: it’s just about 6AM. I’ve been writing for the last hour and a half and I’m falling asleep at the keyboard. The Pecan will be up any minute now. What the hell am I doing this for?

Whatever.

Next week? Fucking packed. Stream of the interview with Lori from Acid King goes up I think on Friday?, but don’t quote me on that. Premieres slated for Cavern, and Iron & Stone, and reviews of Ecstatic Vision, High Fighter, Mars Red Sky and the Ode to Doom show that’s happening next Wednesday in Manhattan. It’ll be my first Ode after co-presenting the series for three years. I’m already a little nervous to go.

I also this week had to take my new lens in for repair and that became a whole thing with Canon. Apparently they sent my warranty to an old email that doesn’t exist anymore, so I never activated it — which means nothing, by the way; the idea of “activating” a warranty by signing up for their system and giving them all the information about what you have and what you do with it? yeah, it’s a data mine and nothing more — and the first time I went to the office it was like I was coming from another planet. Took me all of Tuesday to sort out what had happened to that email, then I got it and had to wait for the warranty confirmation for a day and blah blah blah but I took the lens back in yesterday to the place and it was fine. Hopefully I’ll have it in time for the show next Wednesday, but if not, I’ll slum it with the just-one lens I always used until a couple weeks ago when I bought the new one. Could be worse.

Today is a new episode of The Obelisk Show on Gimme Radio. You saw the playlist. It’s a good ‘un, and I kind of get sentimental in the last voice-break, so that’s fun too. Listen at http://gimmeradio.com.

Alright. The baby-monitor shows the boy is still down, so I’m going to take a couple minutes, finish the rest of this coffee and read and probably fall asleep on the couch.

I wish you a great and safe weekend. Have fun doing what you do.

Forum, radio, merch.

The Obelisk Forum

The Obelisk Radio

The Obelisk shirts & hoodies

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Colour Haze Announce New Album Life out This Fall; Update on Live Vol. 2 & Tour Dates

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 4th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

colour haze 2 (Photo by JJ Koczan)

It was just yesterday day I was sitting around talking about Colour Haze being added to Up in Smoke saying I hoped they had a follow-up to 2017’s In Her Garden (review here) out soon, and here we are. The record that they began putting to tape in April is called Life and will be out this Fall, of course through guitarist/vocalist Stefan Koglek‘s Elektrohasch Schallplatten imprint. It’s due out this Fall, which I’ll assume means either October or November sometime, and that’s fine by me. I especially like the part in the update below where Koglek refers to the process as being “especially delightful.” I want to hear what that sounds like.

They’ve also given some more details on the Live Vol. 2 release they announced this Spring and that will capture their performance from Duna Jam in 2007. That seems like it’ll be especially delightful as well.

Can’t wait to see them again in Norway. Their other confirmed dates are below, along with the promise of more to come and some of their set from Duna Jam this year. Dig it:

Colour-Haze-Duna-Live-2007

Elektrohasch 012 – Colour Haze – Life

The work on our new album is going ahead well and is especially delightful for us this time. We think this will become an exceptional record. More about that later. CD and download will be released in autumn. I can‘t say yet if vinyl can be pressed fast enough to be released until the end of the year. In march we will be on tour with the new album… and until then we play live:

28.09. Villingen-Schwenningen, Kulturzentrum Klosterhof
03.10. CH – Pratteln, Up In Smoke
05.10. NO – Oslo, Hostsabbat
09.10. Bonn, Harmonie, WDR Rockpalast
12.10. München, Feierwerk, Keep It Low
26.10. Berlin, Festsaal Kreuzberg, Rotor XXI

Elektrohasch 061 – Colour Haze -Live Vol. 2 – Duna Jam 2007

Recordings from our first Duna Jam in 2007 – parts of the legendary Tempel-concert and a wonderful session on the beach….

Now ready for preorder, will be delivered by mid of September. DLP in black 180gr. vinyl or handnumbered limited on 500 copies on yellow (beach-side) and blue (tempel-side) vinyl.

Double-CD and downloads coming soon….

http://colourhaze.de/
www.elektrohasch.de

Colour Haze, Live at Duna Jam 2019

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Saturnia Post “The Twilight Bong” Video from The Seance Tapes

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 17th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

saturnia

I said last time around when Saturnia posted a video assembled from studio footage during the making of their latest album, The Seance Tapes (review here), that it probably wouldn’t be the last clip they did in that fashion. For all I know the Portuguese heavy psych rockers have the entire session captured, but for now, “The Twilight Bong” follows “Gemini” (posted here) from the 2018 collection, which found Saturnia founder Luis Simões in the studio for the first time with very nearly a complete lineup, handling guitar, bass, sitar and vocals himself while keeping company with drummer André Silva and keyboardist Nuno Oliveira, essentially able to record live for the first time, and accordingly reworking material from Saturnia‘s prior six full-lengths.

“The Twilight Bong,” for example, makes its sitar-laced way to The Seance Tapes via Saturnia‘s 1999 self-titled debut, and as the penultimate inclusion running a sprawling nine and a half minutes with keys and sitar, drums and percussion intertwining, it’s an especially vivid showcase of what the newer incarnation of Saturnia are able to accomplish, even though it digs back to a record that turns 20 this year. Simões has always been at the core of Saturnia, and to hear his sitar in conversation with Oliveira‘s Mellotron-style keys late in the track is an exciting twist on the character of the original track. The mission is still way trippy, but there’s a live dynamic in the recording throughout The Seance Tapes that a one-man-band would have an almost impossible time trying to capture.

Once again, I don’t think this will be the last time Saturnia put out a video from The Seance Tapes that was taken in the studio. I don’t know if they have footage for the whole record, but if they did and they were able to get it all together, it would only demonstrate the burgeoning, molten chemistry in development with the new lineup. One hopes that perhaps they’ll channel those energies toward further studio work on new material, but the truth of the matter is that if they want to let The Seance Tapes linger a little longer, “The Twilight Bong” is a pretty good example of why that would be just fine.

Please enjoy:

Saturnia, “The Twilight Bong” official video

Hope you are ready for a bit of sitar-Rock.

New video from The Seance Tapes. Enjoy.

Recorded at Colour Haze Studio, Reichertshausen.

Saturnia on Thee Facebooks

Saturnia website

Elektrohasch Schallplatten website

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We Here Now Sign to Elektrohasch; Touring Europe Later This Year

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

we here now

Earlier this year — so I guess like a month ago — the multinational outfit We Here Now offered up their debut release, The Chikipunk Years, blending elements from rock, South American folk, psychedelic punk and more to a highly individualized style that was intricate and memorable in kind. Swamp Booking has picked up the band for European touring representation, and Elektrohasch Schallplatten — the label of Colour Haze guitarist Stefan Koglek will give the album an official release later this year, in May, which I’d guess is ahead of summer tour plans yet to be unveiled.

The announcements from both were recently made and follow below, as well as the stream of the album from Bandcamp. Have at it:

we here now the chikipunk years

Elektrohasch 179 – We Here Now – The Chikipunk Years

Back to the future: I haven‘t heard anything like this yet – guitar, bass, drums – of course… But: a band with members from Brasil, India and Peru mixing the uneven rhythms of Asia with South-American feel, full of modern twists and breaks, driving it into a furious intensity and lay above all this beautiful relaxed melodies with a twist from the Andes to the Himalaya… finally a truly new, fresh take on Rock! – this should be the future!

I am proud to present the debut of We Here Now on Elektrohasch.

Don‘t miss it – so once you can tell you have been there : )

Swamp Booking: Really happy to announce this new addition to our roster!

The multinational band WE HERE NOW is a young new band from Brasil, India/USA and Perù. An exciting approach to the straight-forward aesthetics of fuzzed-out rock. Different cultural and sonic methods of expression delivered with an unmistakable raw punk attitude.

Their debut album will be released by the German record label Elektrohasch (Colour Haze) next May 17th and they will tour Europe ALL summer, playing like there’s no tomorrow!

https://homemadegiftsrecords.bandcamp.com/releases
www.elektrohasch.de

We Here Now, The Chikipunk Years (2019)

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Colour Haze to Record New Album in April; Live Vol. 2 Coming Soon; Touring in Spring

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 20th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Let’s get right to it: Colour Haze are going to begin recording their next album in April. I was thinking the other day they might have something in the works to follow-up 2017’s In Her Garden (review here), and it’s all the more fitting that they do, as they’re also celebrating their 25th anniversary on a previously announced tour this Spring that includes stops at Desertfest in London and Berlin both. New Colour Haze, all the more as the trio has expanded to a four-piece, is among the most welcome things a given year can bring. To say it’s one to look forward to is like saying you look forward to vacation. Of course you’re looking forward to it. It’s vacation. That’s how it is with new Colour Haze.

They’ll also have a new live album out that was recorded at Duna Jam in 2007 — which puts it square in the Tempel era; win — as well as a reissue of Los Sounds de Krauts that will also be remixed. I’ll be interested to hear how that album changes in the new version. Other digital reissues are currently in progress as well.

And I haven’t heard yet, but one assumes they’ll be at Keep it Low in Munich this October for their annual appearance there — one more reason to want to go to that fest — and they may have more anniversary touring in the works as well. We’ll see. Either way, the more active they are, the better a place the planet is to be.

From the PR wire:

colour haze 2 (Photo by JJ Koczan)

25 years Colour Haze

In August 1994 Tim Höfer, Christian Wiesner and me founded Colour Haze. After uneasy first years Mani and Philipp completed the band in 1998. Last year Jan Faszbender joined us. After more than 450 shows all over the world, 2 live- and 12 studio-albums foremost we wish to say:

THANK YOU! Thanks to all who went to our concerts and bought the records. Thanks to our crew, the promoters, local staffs and all who helped. Thanks to all the bands who shared the stage with us and all the musicians who contributed to our recordings. Thanks to all who wrote and spread the word. Thanks to our families who tolerate and support all this!

Thanks for all the friendship we found and could share!

And we have a lot of plans for 2019:
– we keep on working through our back-catalogue and will add more remastered Hi-resolution downloads to our webshop.
– After all the old digital data could be restored Los Sounds De Krauts finally will be remixed and reissued on DLP, 2CD and download.
– Live Vol. 2 will be released soon – recordings from Duna Jam 2007 – parts of the legendary Tempel-concert and a wonderful session on the beach….
– For April we already booked the studio for the basic-track recordings of our upcoming album….

And we want to play live a lot – a first tour is already booked – after the shows with Jan were received so very well last year you can look forward to see us as a fourpiece again in May ; )

02.05. Nürnberg, Hirsch ( + Monkey 3)
03.05. Berlin, Desertfest
04.05. NL-Nijmegen, Sonic Whip
05.05. UK – London, Desertfest
06.05. F – Paris, Petit Bain ( + The Devil and the almighty Blues)
07.05. Aachen, Musikbunker ( + Monkey 3)
08.05. Hannover, Musikzentrum ( + Monkey 3)
09.05. Leipzig, Werk 2
10.05. Stuttgart, Universum ( +The Devil and the almighty Blues)
11.05. Passau, Zauberberg

www.soundofliberation.com/colour-haze
http://colourhaze.de/
www.elektrohasch.de

Colour Haze, In Her Garden (2017)

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Colour Haze Announce 25th Anniversary Tour; Playing Desertfest in London and Berlin

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 6th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

colour haze

Congratulations to Colour Haze on 25 years of making the world a better place, and yes I mean that. I get asked every now and again who’s my favorite band, and no matter mood or any other factor that might come into play, Colour Haze always seem to be in the conversation. The forebears of European tonal warmth and heavy psychedelia didn’t start out as the progressive monolith they’ve become over time, but through their formative years and their heavy rocking era and into the brilliance that’s followed, the band has never stopped moving forward and have remained unflinchingly committed to challenging themselves as players and songwriters.

That’d be worthy of celebration in and of itself, but the fact of the matter is their work is still unparalleled. Up to and including the 2017 outing, In Her Garden (review here), and the expansion to a four-piece four the subsequent touring that included keyboardist Jan Faszbender alongside the core trio of guitarist/vocalist Stefan Koglek, bassist Philipp Rasthofer and drummer Manfred Merwald, they’ve succeeded not only in growing their sound and becoming an influential act in and out of Germany, but in maintaining a level of excellence that stands among the most reliable to be found anywhere. Few phrases can elicit the joy to match that of “new Colour Haze.”

I hope to hear that one soon, speaking of.

They’ll be at Desertfest Berlin and London as part of the 25th anniversary tour, and they’ve got dates with The Devil and the Almighty Blues and Monkey3 as well, so all the better.

From Sound of Liberation via the social medias:

colour haze tour poster

***Colour Haze – 25th ANNIVERSARY TOUR***

Friends! No big explanations needed:

The legends gonna celebrate 25th years of Colour Haze in 2019 and invite YOU to celebrate with them! Tour dates below.

DATES:
02.05.19 Nürnberg | Hirsch *
03.05.19 Berlin | Desertfest
04.05.19 Nijmegen | Sonic Whip
05.05.19 London | Desertfest
06.05.19 Paris | Petit Bain **
07.05.19 Aachen | Musikbunker *
08.05.19 Hannover | Musikzentrum *
09.05.19 Leipzig | Werk2
10.05.19 Stuttgart | Universum **
11.05.19 Passau | Zauberberg

* with monkey3
** with The Devil And The Almighty Blues

www.soundofliberation.com/colour-haze
http://colourhaze.de/
www.elektrohasch.de

Colour Haze, In Her Garden (2017)

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Friday Full-Length: Colour Haze, All

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 14th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Colour Haze, All (2008)


Ten years of All. A decade since this album came out, and that stretch has done nothing to dull its luster. Colour Haze didn’t invent the idea of warmth in a recording, but they might well have perfected it over their years. All swept in and was my album of the year pick in 2008, and its warmth is no small part of why, but it’s also the point at which Colour Haze — already past the 10-year mark themselves by then and on their ninth LP and fourth through Elektrohasch Schallplatten — began to show just how expansive their intentions really were. And how progressive.

It was a new level of maturity in their songwriting and a new level of patience even beyond that which they brought to 2006’s Tempel or their 2004 self-titled (discussed here), both also pivotal offerings both for the band and for European heavy psychedelia in general. Those records seemed to establish the pattern, and All, with its 65-minute 2LP run and its 10 one-word tracks that all streamed together to deliver the message, “silent moon turns lights; if stars all fall one remains,” came through as a new realization of many of the ideas Tempel and Colour Haze put forth, let alone 2003’s 2CD Los Sounds de Krauts, 2001’s Ewige Blumenkraft (reissue review here) or any of their earlier, more desert rock-influenced work preceding.

By the time they got to All, the three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Stefan Koglek — also, if it needs to be said, the head of Elektrohasch — bassist Philipp Rasthofer and drummer Manfred Merwald, had already defined what their core sound was going to be, but in the mellow strums and backwards drums of “Turns,” and in the funk of “Moon” preceding, in the incorporation of organ on “Lights” and the hyper-immersive flow of its title-track, All demonstrated that as groundbreaking as Colour Haze had been up to that point, their exploration was really just getting started.

I don’t want to say All blew everything Colour Haze had previously done out of the water, because that’s not really true. Those other records stand up to any scrutiny one might want to give them and then some, each marking a point in the ongoing forward motion of the band’s continued growth. You cannot have one without the others before it, and that’s true of their work to-date. When they got around to All, however, there was a clear shift in terms of the scope at work. Tempel was and remains defined by its chemistry between KoglekRasthofer and Merwald — the same can be said to a degree of everything the band does — but had an inward-looking feel, where true to its title, All was more expansive and outward-directed.

Given a lot of the sonic exploration underway in songs like opener “Silent,” the sitar/acoustic-based “Stars,” and the tense, churning shuffle of “If” before it, it’s fair to say Colour Haze‘s reach had never been so much a factor in their arrangements, which had always beencolour haze all creative, and an overarching sense of poise held firm throughout, no matter where an individual song seemed to meander. It would be four more years before they put out a song called “Grace,” but All had plenty to go around.

Perhaps nowhere more so than on the extended pairing of “All” and “Fall.” I’ll gladly admit to being more familiar with the CD version — though once I did get to hold the limited edition cloth-cover double vinyl in my hands and I immediately felt unworthy — and while on the LP that’s the split between sides C and D, on the, ahem, CD, it’s a linear shift from one into the next, and it’s the point at which the fluidity that so much permeates the album as a whole finds its high water mark.

The arrival of the keys behind the driving apex toward the end of “Fall” is an obvious culmination point for the entire outing, but even before that, in the patience and gorgeous unfolding of “All” itself and the manner in which it takes on what’s essentially Colour Haze‘s signature riff and with Rasthofer‘s bass as a foundation builds upon it in a new and glorious way. The solo in the second half. The quiet noodling that follows with Merwald‘s cymbal-mute stops keeping the tension going. The build back up to full volume again, and indeed, the keys that emerge late; it’s nothing if not aptly titled “All.” It’s the kind of work that reaffirms hope for the species, even 10 years after the fact.

Repetitions of “We’ve got to get together/We’ve got to be all one” and a well-timed return of sitar make “One” more than an afterthought following “Fall,” and the quiet stand-mostly-alone guitar of “Remains” that caps the album is a statement unto itself. That they would finish not in grand crescendo, but instead peacefully making their way out — it’s another subtle but key decision that makes All the masterpiece it still is.

Colour Haze would, of course, continue the thread. As alluded to, in 2012, after copious delays on the technical side they released She Said (review here), which dived even deeper into expanded arrangements, with horns and strings pulled in alongside the core trio on cuts like “Transformation” and the aforementioned “Grace.” Late-2014’s To the Highest Gods We Know (review here) followed and drew back to a more rooted and jammier vibe, but still had its progressive aspects readily on display, and after the 2016 live record, Live Vol. 1 – Europa Tournee 2015 (review here), 2017 brought In Her Garden (review here), which again was one of the year’s best albums and renewed their commitment to the tenets of classic progressive rock while retaining the organic melodic and rhythmic sensibilities that seem at this point to be indispensable to their sound.

I had the opportunity to see them in London back in May of this year for the first time in half a decade, and they were nothing short of incredible. An absolute treasure of a band. They’ll make an annual sojourn to Keep it Low in their native Munich next month and play Sankt Hell in Berlin to round out the year, and I would not be at all surprised if 2019 brought a new release from them of one sort or another. Whatever that might be, it’d only be welcome.

I sincerely hope you enjoy All, and thanks for reading.

My early mornings doing Obelisk stuff have kind of become overnight shifts. I got up sometime around 1:30AM to start this post, and it’s coming on 4AM now. Most of this week I’ve been up between 2 and 2:30. I slept until my alarm went off at 3:30AM the other day and felt like I was behind all day because I didn’t get enough done before the baby woke up. And the truth is I was. One attempts to find a balance.

Attempts.

Hey, looks like I might be going back to Norway. I tend to never consider these things settled until I’m through security and getting on the flight — though even that wasn’t far enough when that volcano went off on my way to Roadburn in 2010 — but things are in motion to get me back to Høstsabbat in a couple weeks and it has The Patient Mrs.’ seal of approval. Electric Moon, Asteroid, Toner Low, Elephant Tree, on and on, playing in a church in Oslo? Yeah, you can go right ahead and sign me up for that one. Keeping my fingers crossed all the confirmation comes through okay. Naturally, if it happens, I’ll be covering. More info on the fest is here. It’s sold out.

Also looks like I’m getting a show on Gimme Radio. I turned in a sample playlist and they dug it so, it’s kind of a thing I’m trying out. I did college radio at WSOU, and kind of have missed being on-air ever since, so this could be a cool way to do that. Plus there are good people involved and that’s always key. More to come. I need to send them pictures of myself. Sadly, I’m awful-looking, so this is a source of some anxiety. Like, life-long.

In the meantime, The Little Dog Dio continues a steady decline. We’ve been hand-feeding her chicken breast and Polly-O string cheese for I guess two weeks now, and she just ate a bunch and drank some water and went out to pee, so clearly the steroids we’ve been giving her are doing their job, but she’s less comfortable between doses of pain meds than she’s been. Last night she was hunched up standing with her head down, clearly uncomfortable, and it had been a while since we saw that. Just now she got up out of her bed in the kitchen and came to lay down by my feet, which she ordinarily wouldn’t do — a shar pei wants to be nearby, but likes its space — so yeah. I’ve loved this dog for a long time. Another vet appointment next week to follow-up and see where we’re at. I’ll just give scritches and belly rubs until then. How about a billion dollars to whoever cures cancer first? I’d donate to that Kickstarter.

I don’t even want to get up and get another cup of coffee for fear of disturbing her.

That’s been hard. The worst part is there are moments where she’s eating and I forget and I feel like she’s maybe getting better and I look at the GIANT FUCKING TUMOR in her shoulder and just feel like I’ve been punched in the stomach. She’s not going to get better. We’re buying time. Buying time and drawing it out. I told The Patient Mrs. a few days ago that I always imagined she wouldn’t so much die as evolve beyond her corporeal form and become a being of pure light like in that episode of The Next Generation. I was kidding, of course, but let that be indicative of my overall ability to emotionally handle what’s coming. Eating made her hurt. It happened last night too and it happened just now. Ugh.

Okay.

The Patient Mrs.’ semester has also started, so the week’s been kind of a mess on that end too. Summers “off” is nice — or would be; she has to work all the time anyway, between research, reading, writing and meetings for sundry university service projects, so while she’s not teaching, “summers off” is mostly a myth — but having your schedule upended every couple months, especially now with The Pecan running the show as he is, I’m trying to figure out when’s naptime not the least so I can sleep too. We’ll get there. We’re not there yet.

If you’re in North Carolina or anywhere in Hurricane Florence’s path, good luck and stay safe. My grandmother who passed away last year was named Florence. If she were alive and lucid, I’d like to think she’d see it as a fitting tribute. If anyone sees people after the storm selling “I survived Florence” t-shirts, I want one in every size available. Black shirts preferred. I’ll PayPal you the cash.

I’m streaming a track from the new Sherpa album — so good — and I’m going to try to review the new All Them Witches next week, and I’ve got stuff slated into the middle of the week already, news and such, but yeah, I’m going to finish working it all out over the weekend, so I’ll just leave it there for now.

Like always, I hope you have a great and safe weekend. Please have fun, hug your loved ones and take care of yourself in the best way you can.

And like always, please check out the Forum and Radio stream. It is appreciated.

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Saturnia Post “Gemini” Video from The Seance Tapes

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 26th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

saturnia

Somebody had the right idea. I’m gonna guess it was Luís Simões. When Portuguese heavy psych rockers Saturnia hit Colour Haze Studio — yes, run by the band of the same name — to record their latest album, The Seance Tapes (review here), they brought a video camera along to capture the process. This was the right idea because the band was recording live for the first time, and where it’s traditionally been Simões working on his own in multi-instrumentalist fashion handling guitar, sitar, bass, vocals, etc., this time he not only had drummer André Silva with him, but also key specialist Nuno Oliveira on organ, synth, electric piano and whatnot, tracking live as a three-piece.

This wouldn’t necessarily be a minor change if it was Saturnia‘s second record or even their third, but it’s their seventh. They’ve worked pretty much with Simões and various other contributors all along, and for the first time it’s a full band functioning as a live act. I guess Simões figured that if he was going to continue to push into new ground as the band had a six-album track record of doing, this was the way to go. It worked. The Seance Tapes is a collection of songs that featured on past Saturnia full-lengths, and even so, one can hear the new life breathed into the material as they go. It flows much as a live set would because basically it is a live set, played and then given further flourish later on atop the basic tracks laid down to analog tape.

I wouldn’t speculate as to whether Saturnia will continue in this manner or go back to the way things have always been, but either way, The Seance Tapes captures a special moment in their history, and as such, it’s all the more fitting that it’s caught on video and preserved in more than just the album itself. A video for “Mindrama” from 2007’s Muzak has already surfaced, but you can see the band in the studio below for “Gemini” from their 1999 self-titled debut. I don’t expect it will be the last clip that makes its way to the public.

The Seance Tapes is out now on Elektrohasch Schallplatten.

Please enjoy:

Saturnia, “Gemini” official video

New video from The Seance Tapes – Gemini.

Recorded at Colour Haze Studio, Reichertshausen.

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Elektrohasch Schallplatten website

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