Quarterly Review: Nebula, Mountain of Misery, Page Williams Turner, Almost Honest, Buzzard, Mt. Echo, Friends of Hell, Red Sun, Wolff & Borgaard, Semuta

Posted in Reviews on May 13th, 2024 by JJ Koczan


Legend has it that a long time ago, thousands of years ago, before even the founding of the Kingdom of New Jersey itself, there was a man who attempted a two-week, 100-album Quarterly Review. He truly believed and was known to say to his goodlady wife, “Sure, I can do 100 releases in 10 days. That should be fine,” but lo, the gods did smite him for his hubris.

His punishment? That very same Quarterly Review.

Like the best of mythology, the lesson here is don’t be a dumbass and do things like 100-record Quarterly Reviews. Clearly this is a lesson I haven’t learned. Welcome to the next two weeks. Sorry for the typos. Let’s roll.

Quarterly Review #1-10:

Nebula, Livewired in Europe

Nebula Livewired in Europe

A busy 2023 continued on from a busy 2022 for SoCal heavy rockers Nebula as they supported their seventh album, Transmission From Mothership Earth (review here), and as filthy as was founding guitarist Eddie Glass‘ fuzz on that record, the nine-track (12 on the CD) Livewired in Europe pushes even further into the rawer stoner punk that’s always been at root in their sound. They hit Europe twice in 2023, in Spring and Fall, and in the lumbering sway of “Giant,” the drawl of “Messiah,” the Luciferian wink of that song and “Man’s Best Friend” earlier in the set, and the righteous urgency of what’s listed in the promo as “Down the Mother Fuckin’ Highway” or the shred-charged roll of “Warzone Speedwolf” in the bonus cuts, with bassist Ranch Sironi backing Glass on vocals and Mike Amster wailing away on drums — he’s the glue that never sounds stuck — they document the mania of post-rebirth Nebula as chaotic and forceful in kind, which is precisely what one would most hope for at the start of the gig. It’s not their first live outing, and hopefully it’s not the last either.

Nebula on Facebook

Heavy Psych Sounds website

Mountain of Misery, The Land

mountain of misery the land

The self-recording/self-releasing Kamil Ziółkowski offers his second solo LP with The Land, following in short order from last Fall’s In Roundness (review here) and the two-songer issued a month after. At six songs and 35 minutes, The Land further distinguishes Mountain of Misery stylistically from Ziółkowski‘s main outfit, Spaceslug. Yes, the two bands share a penchant for textured tones and depth of mix (Haldor Grunberg at Satanic Audio mixed and mastered), and the slow-delivered melodic ‘gaze-style vocals are recognizable, but “The ’90s” puts Nirvana through this somewhat murky, hypnotic filter, and before its shimmering drone caps the album, on closer “Back Again,” the multi-instrumentalist/vocalist reminds a bit of Eddie Vedder. Seekers of nod will find plenty in “Awesome Burn” and the slightly harder-hitting “High Above the Mount” — desert rock in its second half, but on another planet’s desert — while the succession of “Path of Sound” and “Come on Down” feel specifically set to more post-rocking objectives; the plot and riffs likewise thickened. Most of all, it sounds like Mountain of Misery is digging in for a longer-term songwriting exploration, and quickly, and The Land only makes me more excited to find out where it’s headed.

Mountain of Misery on Facebook

Electric Witch Mountain Recordings on Facebook

Page Williams Turner, Page Williams Turner

page williams turner self titled

The named-for-their-names trio Page Williams Turner is comprised of electronicist/mixer Michael Page (Sky Burial, many others), drummer/percussionist Robert Williams (of the harshly brilliant Nightstick) and saxophonist Nik Turner (formerly Hawkwind, et al), and the single piece broken into two sides on their Opposite Records self-titled debut is a duly experimentalist, mic-up-and-go extreme take on free psychedelic jazz, drone, industrial noisemaking, and time-what-is-time-signature manipulation. “Rorrim I” is drawn cinematically into an unstable wormhole circa its 14th minute, and teases serenity before the listener is eaten by a giant spider in some kind of unknowable ritual, and while “Rorrim II” feels less manic on average, its cycles, ebbs and flows remain wildly unpredictable. That’s the point, of course. If the combination of personnel and/or elements seems really, really weird on paper, you’re on the right track. This kind of thing will never be for everybody, but those who can get on its level will find it transportive. If that’s you, safe travels.

Page Williams Turner at Opposite Records Bandcamp

Opposite Records website

Almost Honest, The Hex of Penn’s Woods

almost honest the hex of penn's woods

The spoken intro welcoming the listener to “the greatest and last show of your lives” at the head of the chugging “Mortician Magician” is a little over the top considering the straightforward vibe of much of what follows on the 10 tracks of 2023’s The Hex of Penn’s Woods from Pennsylvania-based heavy rockers Almost Honest, but whether it’s the banjo early or the cowbell later in “Haunted Hunter,” the post-Fu Manchu riffing and gang shouts of “Alien Spiders,” “Ballad of a Mayfly”‘s whistling, the organ in “Amish Hex” (video premiere here), the harmonies of “Colony of Fire,” a bit of sax on “Where the Quakers Dwell,” that quirk in the opener, the funk wrought throughout by Garrett Spangler‘s bass and Quinten Spangler‘s drumming, the metal-rooted intertwining of Shayne Reed and David Kopp‘s guitars or the structural solidity beneath all of it, the band give aural character to coincide with the regionalist themes based on their Pennsylvania Dutch, foothill-Appalachian surroundings, and they dare to make their third album’s 44 minutes fun in addition to thoughtful in its craft.

Almost Honest on Facebook

Argonauta Records website

Buzzard, Doom Folk

buzzard doom folk

Based in Western Massachusetts, Buzzard is the solo-project of Christopher Thomas Elliott, and the title of his debut album, Doom Folk, describes his particular intention. As the 12-song/44-minute outing unfolds from the eponymous “Buzzard” at its outset (even that feels like a Sabbathian dogwhistle), the blend of acoustic and electric guitar forms the heart of the arrangements, but more than that, it’s doom and folk, stylistically, that are coming together. What makes it work is that Elliott avoids the trap of 2010s-ish neo-folk posturing as a songwriter, and while there’s a ready supply of apocalyptic mood in the lyrical storytelling and abundant amplified distortion put to dynamic use, the folk he’s speaking to is more traditional. Not lacking intricacy in their percussion, arrangements or melodies, you could nonetheless learn these songs and sing them. “Death Metal in America” alone makes it worth the price of admission, let alone the stellar “Lucifer Rise,” but the sweet foreboding and build of the subsequent “Harvester of Souls” gets even closer to Buzzard‘s intention in bringing together the two sides to manifest a kind of heavy that is immediately and impressively its own. Doom Folk on.

Buzzard on Facebook

Buzzard on Bandcamp

Mt. Echo, Cometh

mt echo cometh

Mt. Echo begin their third full-length primed for resonance with the expansive, patiently wrought “Veil of Unhunger,” leading with their longest track (immediate points) as a way of bringing the listener into the record’s mostly instrumental course with a shimmer of post-rock and later-emerging density of tone. The Nijmegen trio’s follow-up to 2022’s Electric Empire (review here) plays out across a breadth that extends beyond the 44-minute runtime and does more in its pieces than flow smoothly between its loud/quiet tradeoffs. “Round and Round Goes the Crown” brings a guest appearance from Oh Hazar guitarist/vocalist Stefan Kollee that pushes the band into a kind of darker, thoroughly Dutch heavy prog, but even that shift is made smoother by the spoken part on “Brutiful Your Heart” just before, and not necessarily out of line with how “Set at Rest” answers the opener, or the rumble, nod and wash that cap with “If I May.” The overarching sense of growth is palpable, but the songs express more atmospherically than just the band pushing themselves.

Mt. Echo on Facebook

Mt. Echo on Bandcamp

Friends of Hell, God Damned You to Hell

friends of hell god damned you to hell

They’re probably to raw and dug into Satanic cultistry to agree, but with Per “Hellbutcher” Gustavsson (Nifelheim) on vocals, guitarists Beelzeebubth (Mystifier, etc.) and Nikolas “Sprits” Moutafis (Mirror, etc.), bassist Taneli Jarva (Impaled Nazarene, etc.) and drummer Tasos Danazoglou (Mirror, ex-Electric Wizard, etc.) in the lineup for second LP God Damned You to Hell, it’s probably safe to call Friends of Hell a supergroup. Such considerations ultimately have little to do with how the rolling proto-NWOBHM triumphs of “Bringer of Evil” and “Arcane Macabre” play out, but it explains the current of extremity in their purposes that comes through at the start with the title-track and the severity that surrounds in the layering of “Ave Satanatas” as they journey into the underworld to finish with the eight-minute “All the Colors of the Dark.” You’re either going to buy the backpatch or shrug and not get it, and that seems like it’s probably fine with them.

Friends of Hell on Instagram

Rise Above Records website

Red Sun, From Sunset to Dawn

Red Sun From Sunset to Dawn

Not to be confused with France’s Red Sun Atacama, Italian prog-heavy psych instrumentalists Red Sun mark their 10th anniversary with the release of their third album, From Sunset to Dawn, and run a thread of doom through the keyboardy “The Sunset Turns Purple” and “The Shape of Night” on side A to manifest ‘sunset’ while side B unfolds with airier guitar in “The Coldness of the New Moon” and “Towards the End of Darkness” en route to the raga-leaning “The New Sun,” but as much as there is to be said for the power of suggestion and narrative titling, it’s the music itself that realizes the progression described in the name of the album. With a clear influence from My Sleeping Karma in “The Coldness of the New Moon” and the blend of organic hand-percussion and digitized melody in “The New Sun,” Red Sun immerse the listener in the procession from the intro “Where Once Was Light” (mirrored by “Intempesto” at the start of side B) onward, with each song serving as a chapter in the linear concept and story.

Red Sun on Facebook

Subsound Records website

Wolff & Borgaard, Destroyer

wolff and borgaard destroyer

Cinematic enough in sheer sound and the corresponding intensity of mood to warrant the visual collaboration with Kai Lietzke that accompanies the audio release, the collaboration between Hamburg electronic experimentalist Peter Wolff (Downfall of Gaia) and vocalist Jens Borgaard (Knifefight!, solo) moves between minimalist soundscaping and more consuming, weighted purposes. Moments like the beginning of “Transmit” might leave one waiting for when the Katatonia song is going to kick in, but Wolff & Borgaard engage on their own level as each of the nine pieces follows its own poetic course, able to be caustic like the culmination of “Observe” or to bring the penultimate “Extol” to silence gradually before “Reaper” bursts to life with clearly intentional contrast. I heard this or that streaming service is making a Blade Runner 2099 tv series. Sounds like a terrible idea, but it might just be watchable if Wolff & Borgaard get to do the score with a similar evocations of software and soul.

Peter Wolff on Facebook

My Proud Mountain website

Semuta, Glacial Erratic

Semuta Glacial Erratic

The Portland, Oregon, two-piece of guitarist/bassist/vocalist Benjamin Caragol (ex-Burials) and drummer Ben Stoller (currently also Simple Forms, Dark Numbers, ex-Vanishing Kids) do much to ingratiate themselves both to the crowded underground of which their hometown is an epicenter, and to the broader sphere of heavy-progressivism in modern doom and sludge. Across the five tracks of their self-released for now debut full-length, Glacial Erratic, the pair offer a panacea of heavy sounds, angular in the urgency of “Toeing the Line,” which opens, or the later thud of “Selective Memory” (the latter of which also appeared on their 2020 self-titled EP), which seem more kin to Baroness or Elder crashes and twists of “A Distant Light” or the interplay of ambience, roll, and sharpness of execution that’s been held in reserve for the nine-minute “Wounds at the Stem” as they leave off. Melody, particularly in Caragol‘s vocals, is crucial in tying the material together, and part of what gives Semuta such apparent potential, but they seem already to have figured out a lot about who they want to be musically. All of which is to say don’t be surprised when this one shows up on the list of 2024’s best debut albums come December.

Semuta on Facebook

Semuta on Bandcamp

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Quarterly Review: Pike vs. The Automaton, End Boss, Artifacts & Uranium, Night City, Friends of Hell, Delco Detention, Room 101, Hydra, E-L-R, Buffalo Tombs

Posted in Reviews on April 8th, 2022 by JJ Koczan


You have your coffee yet? I’ve got mine. Today’s Friday, which means day five of this six-day Spring 2022 Quarterly Review, and it’s been a hell of a week. Yesterday was particularly insane, and today offers not much letup in that regard. If you’d have it another way, I’m sorry, but there’s too much cool shit out there to write about stuff that all sounds the same, so I don’t. I’ve had a good time over this stretch and I hope you have too if you’ve been keeping up. We’ll have one more on Monday and that’s it until late June or early July, so please enjoy.

And thanks as always for reading.

Quarterly Review #41-50:

Pike vs. the Automaton, Pike vs. The Automaton

matt pike vs the automaton

Matt Pike acoustic? It happened, and YOU were there! Truth is, the strumming foundation on which “Land” is built is just one example of Pike vs. The Automaton‘s singular get-weirdness, and followers of his career arc through Sleep and High on Fire from playing basements to winning a Grammy will recognize pieces of cuts like “Abusive” and “Trapped in a Midcave,” the all-out rager “Alien Slut Mom” (which of course was the lead single), the bombastic expanse of “Apollyon,” the even-more-all-out-rager “Acid Test Zone” and the dug-in get-weirdness of “Latin American Geological Formation” as one of heavy music’s most influential auteurs welcomes (?) listeners into a world of swirling chaos, monsters, conspiracies and, of course, riffs. The album saves its greatest accomplishment for last in the 11-minute “Leaving the Wars of Woe,” but if you’re old enough to remember when Rob Zombie did those off-the-wall cartoons for White Zombie videos and the Beavis and Butt-Head movie, listening to Pike vs. the Automaton is kind of like living in that for a while. So yeah, awesome.

Pike vs. The Automaton website

MNRK Heavy website


End Boss, They Seek My Head

End Boss They Seek My Head

Maybe the heaviest sans-bass low end since Floor? That’s not a minor claim, but at very least Wellington, New Zealand’s End Boss put themselves in the running with They Seek My Head, their debut album. The guitars of Greg Broadmore and Christian Pearce are the crushing foundation on which the band is built, and with Beastwars‘ own Nathan Hickey on drums, there’s a reliable base of groove to coincide as all that weight becomes the backdrop for E.J. Thorpe‘s vocals to soar over top on cuts like “Heart of the Sickle” and “Punished.” It’s a wide breadth throughout the eight songs and 33 minutes, allowing “Becomes the Gold” to show some emotive urgency while “Nail and Tooth” seems only to be sharpening knives at the outset of side B, while “The Crawl” just about has to be named after its riff and fair enough. “Lorded Over” hints at an atmospheric focus that may or may not further manifest in the future, but the closing title-track is what it’s all about, and it’s big nod, big melody, big hooks. You can’t lose. Onto the ‘best debuts of 2022’ it goes.

End Boss on Facebook

Rough Peel Records website


Artifacts & Uranium, Pancosmology

Artifacts and Uranium Pancosmology

Fred Laird (Earthling Society, Taras Bulba) and Mike Vest (Bong, Blown Out, etc.) released their self-titled debut as Artifacts & Uranium in 2021 as a collection of three massive dronescapes. Their follow-up, Pancosmology, telegraphs being more compositionally-focused even before you put it on, running eight songs instead of three, and indeed, that’s how it turns out. There are still massive waves of exploratory drones, guitar, electric piano, drums programmed and real — Nick Raybould plays on half the tracks, so a potential third in the duo — synth, bass, whatever a Gakken Generator is, it all comes together with an understated splendor and a sense of reaching into the unknown. Witness the guitar and synth lines of “Silent Plains,” and are those vocals buried so deep in that mix? I can’t even tell. It doesn’t matter. The point is that for 37 minutes, Laird and Vest (and Raybould) take you on a psych-as-spirituality trip into, around and through the universe, and by the time they get to “The Inmost Light” noisewashing at the finish, the feeling is like being baptised in a cold river of acid. If this is the birth of the gods, I’m in.

Taras Bulba on Facebook

Echodelick Records website

Weird Beard Records webstore


Night City, Kuang Xi

Night City Kuang XI

After the slower rolling opener “Broken Dick,” Night City‘s debut cassette EP, Kuang Xi, works at a pretty intense clip, taking the Godflesh vibe of that lead track, keeping the abiding tonal thickness, and imbuing it with an also-’90s-era Ministry-ish sense of chaos and push. The four-song outing works from its longest track to shortest and effectively melds heavy industrial with brutal chug and extreme metal, and one should expect no less from Collyn McCoy, whose plumbing of the dark recesses of the mind in Circle of Sighs is a bit more purely experimentalist. That said, if “Encryptor/Decryptor” showed up as a Circle of Sighs track, I wouldn’t have argued, but the use of samples here throughout and the explicitly sociopolitical lyrics make for coherent themes separate from McCoy‘s other project. “Steppin’ Razor” uses its guitar solo like a skronky bagpipe while calling out Proud Boy bullshit, and in fewer than three minutes, “Molly Million$” finds another gear of thrust before devolving into so much caustic noise. The version I got also featured the dancier “Tomorrow’s World,” but I’m not sure if that’s on the tape. Either way, a brutalist beginning.

Night City on Facebook

Dune Altar website


Friends of Hell, Friends of Hell

friends of hell friends of hell

Rise Above Records signing a band that might even loosely be called doom is immediately noteworthy because it means the band in question has impressed label owner Lee Dorrian, formerly of Cathedral, who — let’s be honest — has some of the best taste in music the world over. Thus Friends of Hell unleash 40 minutes of dirt-coated earliest-NWOBHM-meets-CelticFrost chugging groove, with former Electric Wizard bassist Tasos Danazoglou (currently Mirror) on drums and Sami “Albert Witchfinder” Hynninen (Spiritus MortisReverend BizarreOpium Warlords) on vocals, biting through catchy classic-sounding cuts like “Into My Coffin” and side B’s “Gateless Gate” and “Orion’s Beast.” Unremittingly dark, the nine-song collection ends with “Wallachia,” a somewhat grander take that still keeps its rawness of tone and general purpose with a more spacious vibe. It is not a coincidence Friends of Hell take their name from a Witchfinder General record; their sound seems like prime fodder for patch-on-denim worship.

Friends of Hell on Instagram

Rise Above Records website


Delco Detention, What Lies Beneath

Delco Detention What Lies Beneath

The second full-length keeping on a literally-underground theme from 2021’s From the Basement (review here), the 10-song/35-minute What Lies Beneath finds founding Delco Detention guitarist Tyler Pomerantz once again getting by with a little help from his friends, up to and including members of Hippie Death CultEddie Brnabic shreds over instrumental closer “FUMOFO” — The Age of Truth, Kingsnake and others. Angelique Zuppo makes a highlight of early cut “Rock Paper Scissors,” and Dave Wessell of Ickarus Gin brings a performance that well suits the strut-fuzz of “War is Mine,” while instrumentals “What Lies Beneath” and “Velcro Shoes” find Tyler (on bass and guitar) and drummer Adam Pomerantz digging into grooves just fine on their own. The shifts between singers give a compilation-style feel continued on from the first record, but a unifying current of songwriting brings it all together fluidly, and as “A Slow Burn” and “Study Hall Blues” readily demonstrate, Delco Detention know how to take a riff out for a walk. Right on (again).

Delco Detention on YouTube

Delco Detention on Bandcamp


Room 101, Sightless

Room 101 Sightless

Put Lansing, Michigan’s Room 101 up there with Primitive Man, Indian and any other extreme-sludge touchstone you want and their debut long-player, Sightless, will hold its own in terms of sheer, concrete-tone crushing force. In answering the potential of 2019’s The Burden EP (review here), the album offsets its sheer bludgeoning with stretches of quiet-tense atmospherics, “Boarded Window” offering a momentary respite before the onslaught begins anew. This balance is further fleshed out on longer tracks like “Dead End,” with a more extended break and the title-cut with its ending guitar lead, but neither the sub-five-minute “Windowlicker” nor “Boarded Window” earlier want for mood, and even the finale “The Innocent, the Ignorant and the Insecure” brings a feeling of cohesion to its violence. This shit is lethal, to be sure, but it’s also immersive. Watch out you don’t drown in it.

Room 101 on Facebook

Room 101 on Bandcamp


Hydra, Beyond Life and Death

Hydra Beyond Life and Death

Heralded by the prior single “With the Devil Hand in Hand” (posted here), which is positioned as the closer of the 41-minute five-tracker, Hydra‘s second full-length, Beyond Life and Death, finds the Polish four-piece pushing deeper into doomed traditionalism. Where their 2020 debut, From Light to the Abyss (review here), had a garage-ist edge, and if you work hard, you can still hear some of that just before the organ kicks in near the end of “On the Edge of Time” (if that’s a “Children of the Sea” reference we can be friends), but after the more gallop-prone opener “Prophetic Dreams” and the penultimate “Path of the Dark”‘s whoa-oh backing vocals, the crux of what they’re doing is more NWOBHM-influenced, and blending with the cult horror lyrical themes of centerpiece “The Unholy Ceremony” or the aforementioned closer, it gives Hydra a more confident sound and a more poised approach to doom than they had just two years ago. The adjusted balance of elements in their sound suits them, and they seem quickly to be carving out a place for themselves in Poland’s crowded scene.

Hydra on Facebook

Piranha Music on Bandcamp


E-L-R, Vexier

e-l-r vexier

The two 12-minute tracks “Opiate the Sun” and “Foret” bookend Swiss trio E-L-R‘s second LP for Prophecy Productions, Vexier, and the intention would seem to be plain in hooking and immersing the listener in the experience and flow of the album. Like their wildly impressive 2019 debut, Mænad (review here), this collection has plenty of post-metallic elements, and there’s specifically a post-black metal bent to “Three Winds” in its earliest going — by the midsection it’s come apart into broad, open spaces, but the rush comes back — and the centerpiece and shortest track, “Seeds,” which seems to shine even brighter in its melody than the opener, as the vocals are once more presented on a level plane with the rest of the atmospheric elements, far back in the mix but not at all lacking resonance for being vague. “Seeds” is a fitting summary, but “Fleurs of Decay” leans into the expectation of something harsher and “Foret” boasts a more complex linear build, stretches of drone and a broader vocal arrangement before bringing the record to its gentle finish. I liked the first record a lot. I like this one more. E-L-R are doing something with sound that no one else quite has the same kind of handle on, however familiar the elements making it up might be. They are a better band than people yet know.

E-L-R on Facebook

Prophecy Productions store


Buffalo Tombs, III

Buffalo Tombs III

Titled Three or III, depending where you look, the third long-player from Denver instrumental heavy rockers Buffalo Tombs follows relatively hot on the heels of the second, Two (review here), which came out last October. Spearheaded by guitarist/bassist Eric Stuart, who also recorded the instrumentation sans Patrick Haga‘s own self-recorded drums (lockdown? depends on when it was) and mixed and mastered — Joshua Lafferty also adds bass to “Ancestors” and “Monument,” which are just two of the six contemplations here as Buffalo Tombs explores an inward-looking vision of heavy sounds and styles, not afraid to shove or chug a bit on “Swarm” or “Gnostics/Haint,” but more consistently mellow in mood and dug into its own procession. “Familiars” hints at aspects of heavy Americana, but the root expression on III comes across as more personal and that feeling of intimacy suits well the mood of the songs.

Buffalo Tombs on Facebook

Buffalo Tombs on Bandcamp


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Friends of Hell Post “Shadow of the Impaler” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 4th, 2022 by JJ Koczan

friends of hell (Photo by Pete Voutilainen)

Premiered on New Year’s Day, the first video from Friends of Hell is, among other things, delightfully informative. Amid its shot-in-a-cave redness, we find former Electric Wizard bassist Tasos Danazoglou (currently of Mirror) on drums — which, hey, good to know — and we find the band doomed as fuck. Quite, quite doomed. Doom. Fucking. Metal.

This is essentially what was promised by the new project, spearheaded by Danazoglou with Sami “Albert Witchfinder” Hynninen (Spiritus MortisReverend BizarreOpium Warlords) on vocals, but it’s nice to hear it fulfilled from the chugging, downtrodden riffing and abiding sense of darkness that pervades. The ObsessedCandlemass, maybe even some Saint Vitus in there — you may or may not know the drill, but I’m going to assume you do. It’s doom metal. A band doesn’t name itself after a Witchfinder General record if they’re coming along to screw around. And frankly, Rise Above Records doesn’t sign a doom band if they don’t have their shit in line.

“Shadow of the Impaler,” as noted, is the first glimpse at Friends of Hell‘s upcoming self-titled debut, which is out in March on Rise Above. I haven’t heard the full thing yet — I don’t even know who’s in the band besides Danazoglou and Hynninen — so I’m going in here as curious as anyone else and I won’t pretend otherwise, but I think you’ll get the feel for where they’re working from in terms of influence. They’re working from doom. Toward doom.

And if I can add to that: “doom.”

Fucking a.


Friends of Hell, “Shadow of the Impaler” official video

Shadow Of The Impaler is the debut promo video from Friends Of Hell. Their self-titled debut album will be released worldwide on March 18th 2022. It’s a masterclass in classic Doom Metal. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!

Director / editor:
Pete Voutilainen

Samu Hupli
Riku Hyötyläinen
Esa Valkeajärvi
Pete Voutilainen

Esa Valkeajärvi

Production company:
One Eye Media

Friends of Hell on Instagram

Rise Above Records on Facebook

Rise Above Records website

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Friends of Hell Sign to Rise Above Records; Self-Titled Debut Due March 18

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 24th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Named for the second Witchfinder General LP, Friends of Hell will release their self-titled debut album March 18 through Rise Above Records. One will immediately note the participation in the project of Tasos Danazoglou, currently of Mirror and Diavolos and formerly of Electric Wizard, as well as Sami “Albert Witchfinder” Hynninen currently of Opium Warlords and others and formerly of Reverend Bizarre, Spiritus Mortis and a league more. I have found neither audio nor a complete lineup of the band listed, but honestly, if it’s good enough to catch the ear of Lee Dorrian at Rise Above, it’s enough to pique my interest.

In addition to apparently taking some photos in a cave, the band recently filmed a video that will presumably make its way to public eyes/ears ahead of the March 18 release, but there’s not much more on that yet either, so the underlying message of the below seems to be “sit tight.” I guess that’s what I’ll do.

Rise Above put out the following on social media and it came down the PR wire as well. Gotta spread the word, even when there’s not much word to spread.


friends of hell (Photo by Pete Voutilainen)


In these bleak days, we think you might agree, it’s about time we had some dark news that was actually good? Well, Rise Above Records is certainly chuffed to announce the signing of this exciting new DOOM METAL MACHINE known as Friends of Hell. Brainchild of former Electric Wizard bassist, Tas Danazoglou, Friends of Hell also feature the enigmatic talents of former Reverend Bizarre vocalist Albert Witchfinder.

Their fantastic self-titled album will be released worldwide via Rise Above Records on March 18th 2022. More information (including a promo video) coming soon.

Tas:”we are all veterans, having played in many bands in the past, but this one feels very special. We are ready to strike!”

Photo by Pete Voutilainen.


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