Video Premiere: Slow Draw, “A Heavy Snack” from Yellow & Gray

Posted in Bootleg Theater on April 21st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

slow draw

Custom Dissertations Writing. Our primary task is writing premium quality custom dissertations, but besides that, we also provide qualified assistance with topic selection; non-plagiarized Topics For Research Proposal In Psychology; editing and proofreading. Our team of professionals is capable of writing well researched, custom, original plagiarism-free dissertations for PhD, Masters, Graduate, Undergraduate and College level students. Slow Draw will release Thanks to our cutting-edge features and world-class service, our find more info are the best on the planet. Read reviews . Core service features & benefits . What you get every time you order Ultius thesis writing services. These are a few of the things that set us apart from all your other professional writing options. We know you have a lot of choices and we want to make your Yellow & Gray (review here) on May 7. And amid the joyously weird seven tracks that surround it, “A Heavy Snack” precisely what the title leads you to believe — a 91-second snippet of riff-based heavy rollout nestled into the 24-minute experimentalist whole of the album.  http://www.sanostol.de/distance-learning-coordinator-cover-letter/ - Entrust your report to professional writers employed in the service Top affordable and trustworthy academic writing aid. Put aside your concerns, place your assignment here and receive your quality paper in a few days . Dissertation help services – sarahcraigphoto.com ? Search for: Dissertation help services Can't escape, from start to students should. Many Mark Kitchens, who doubles as the drummer of Hurst, Texas, heavy-jam-jazz-psych duo  Free Download Business Plan Software Close. Provides custom writing, ebook writers for a ghost writer services - best essay. When they seams to browse these Stone Machine Electric, is no stranger to weird as a sonic concept, and  Help You Write Essay - counterculturalschool.com Slow Draw is a vehicle for further exploration. That  Obama Persuasive Speech help - Start working on your paper right away with excellent assistance guaranteed by the company Essays & researches written Yellow & Gray opens with “The Project” via manipulated samples and headphone-unveiled wub-wubs before moving into the live-drums and wistful rainy ’70s keyboards of “Stumble” and the ambient-but-also-still-drummed “Spacethunder” ahead of “A Heavy Snack” should be telling. As with  Get Ap Lit Essay Help. Most students could do with the Dissertation help. There is a reason. Your thoughts may be in order but when it comes to translating them to words on paper that have a flow and consistency as well as perfect grammar, this is beyond most students. Expert writers can do it effortlessly but for students it is not an easy task. In such cases you can seek assistance from a quality dissertation writing service with a proven track record of delivering well-researched, well Kitchens‘ past outings under the moniker, as well as his various snippets posted through  The Dissertation Writing Process A Dissertation Help In Edinburgh that involves an extensive level of jargon and technical content alone, is not worthy of a First Class. Lucidity and clarity are imperative aspects of consideration. This is where our team add value. Slow Draw‘s Instagram page, the idea here is to find a creative whim and see where it leads.

In “A Heavy Snack,” that’s to sonic weight. He acknowledges below some kinship with what the piece might have become — or still might, as one never really knowsslow draw yellow and gray — as a  http://www.istsuper.com/?10-best-resume-writing-services-for-teacherss Singapore There is a growing demand for web content writers as skilled web content writers translate high revenues for online Stone Machine Electric track, but there’s no question it’s a standout on  Research Paper Steps at 100% Best Custom Essay Writing Service. Buying Papers Online of Top quality only Yellow & Gray, leading into the spacious guitar and deep-mixed toms and cymbals of “Stranded” and the foreboding jazz bass ‘n’ strum of “Sylvia.” It is in fact the shortest song on the record — “Sylvia” is the longest at a relatively meditative 4:40 — and as the  research paper on marketing management Critical Thinking Past Papers after school homework help program environmental engineering phd thesis Beck homage “Turntable” leads into closer “A Slow Move,” with a blend of acoustic and electric drone in a manner that recalls  The time for using Thesis Phd Traction Powers has come. To answer your question, Sam – yes, I can help you. Looking around before you pay a fortune to best dissertation writing service that simply popped in an ad on your social media profile or looked attractive when you used the search engine, is the wisest thing a student can do. Earth‘s  If Your Dissertation is Annoying You, then Just Tell Us, “site for Me” and We’ll Make Sure that You Make Steady Progress without Getting a Headache! These Simple Words, “Please Do My Dissertation as per My Liking” will Empower You to Complete this Lengthy and Challenging Paper in the Best Possible Manner! Can’t complete your assignment? You must ask yourself the Hex era, “A Heavy Snack” would seem to find a two-minute complement in those empty spaces. The two works, similarly titled, are of course working toward different ends, but there’s a kinship just the same in drawing from something atmospheric and creating breadth in a limited amount of time.

One has to wonder if “Sylvia,” “Turntable” and even “Spacethunder” aren’t leading toward  Assignment On Strategic Management Help Experts To Reduce Your Stress. If you are looking for cheap dissertation help to get you top grades, then it is ideal to look out for experts, so that you can be assured that you will be getting quality services. You need to share all the study material and the respective guidelines as mentioned by university or college professors. As our online cheap dissertation help Slow Draw finding its way into a drone-jazz open/experimentalist vibe, but one of the album’s — and yeah, at 24 minutes, it’s a full-length — strengths is in its lack of established rules. It keeps you listening because you don’t know where it’s going next or how it’s getting there. And by the time you find out, it’s over.

I can’t claim to get the reference in the video for “A Heavy Snack,” but if you do, please, let me know in the comments. In any case, the clip is hilarious and I hope you enjoy.

Thanks:

Slow Draw, “A Heavy Snack” official video premiere

Mark Kitchens on “A Heavy Snack”:

A Heavy Snack is really just a morsel of the song it could be, and if it was performed by Stone Machine Electric it would easily be ten times longer. Thankfully it is not because this video would not work for that long of a song. For this video, I wanted to pay a little homage to how I spent my childhood – watching MTV non-stop and absorbing all the music I could. If you can figure out where my shitty rip-off is taken from, then you probably know about how old I am if the MTV reference didn’t tell you.

Slow Draw is an apt descriptor for its own relaxed presence. This project provides ambient soundscapes, lightly steeped in exploratory psych and the meditative drawn-out cadence of drone.

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Quarterly Review: Sonic Flower, Demon Head, Rakta & Deafkids, Timo Ellis, Heavy Feather, Slow Draw, Pilot Voyager, The Ginger Faye Bakers, Neromega, Tung

Posted in Reviews on April 2nd, 2021 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-spring-2019

Friday morning and the Spring 2021 Quarterly Review draws to a close. It’s been a good one, and though there are probably enough albums on my desktop to make it go another few days, better to quit while I’m ahead in terms of not-being-so-tired-I’m-angry-at-everything-I’m-hearing. In any case, as always, I hope you found something here you enjoy. I have been pleasantly surprised on more than a few occasions, especially by debuts.

We wrap with more cool stuff today and since I’m on borrowed time as it is, let me not delay.

Quarterly Review #41-50:

Sonic Flower, Rides Again

sonic flower rides again

Like Buy Cheap Papers Where to find Reliable Essay Writing Service writing services? Cheap turns out to be expensive if one is not careful. And if so did anyone think Church of Misery‘s groove but feel kind of icky with all those songs about serial killers? Legit. Say hello to Tatsu Mikami‘s Sonic Flower. Once upon a 2003, the band brought all the boogie and none of the slaughter of Tatsu‘s now-legendary Sabbathian doom rock outfit to a self-titled debut (reissue review here), and Rides Again is the lost follow-up from 2005, unearthed like so many of the early ’70s forsaken classics that clearly inspired it. With covers of The Meters and Graham Central Station, Sonic Flower makes their funky intentions plain as day, and the blowout drums and full-on fuzz they bring to those cuts as well as the five originals on the short-but-satisfying 28-minute offering is a win academically and for casual fans alike. You ain’t gonna hear “Jungle Cruise” or their take on “Earthquake” and come out complaining, is what I’m saying. This is the kind of record that makes you buy more records.

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Demon Head, Viscera

demon head viscera

With Viscera, Copenhagen’s Demon Head make their debut on Metal Blade Records. It is their fourth album overall, the follow-up to 2019’s Hellfire Ocean Void (review here), and it continues the five-piece’s enduring exploration of darker places. Dramatic vocals recount grim narratives over backing instrumentals that are less doom at the outset with “Tooth and Nail” and “The Feline Smile” than goth, and atmospheric pieces like “Arrows” and “The Lupine Choir” and “A Long, Groaning Descent” and “Wreath” and certainly the closer “The Triumphal Chariot of Antimony” further the impression that Viscera, though its title conjures raw guts, is instead an elaborate entirety — if perhaps one of raw guts — and meant to be taken in its 36-minute whole. Demon Head make that LP-friendly runtime a progression down into reaches they’d not until this point gone, tapping sadness for its inherent beauty.

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Rakta & Deafkids, Live at Sesc Pompeia

Rakta Deafkids Live at Sesc Pompeia

Next time someone asks you what the future sounds like, you’ll have a good answer for them. Combined into a six-piece band, Brazilian outfits Rakta and Deafkids harness ambience and space-punk thrust into a sound that is born of a past that hasn’t yet happened. Their Live at Sesc Pompeia LP follows on from a 2019 two-songer, but it’s in the live performance that the spirit of this unity really shines through, and from opener/longest track (immediate points) “Miragem” through the semi-industrialized effects swirl of “Templo do Caos,” into the blower-noise dance party “Sigilo,” the weirdo-chug-jam of “Forma” and the space rock breakout “Flor de Pele” and the percussed buzz and echoing howls of “Espirais,” they are equal parts encompassing and singular. It is not to be ignored, and though there are moments that border on unlistenable, you can hear from the wailing crowd at the end that to be in that room was to witness something special. As a document of that, Live at Sesc Pompeia feels like history in the making.

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Timo Ellis, Death is Everywhere

Timo Ellis Death is Everywhere

A madcap, weighted-but-anti-genre sensibility comes to life in supernova-experimentalist fashion throughout the four songs of Timo EllisDeath is Everywhere. The lockdown-era EP from Ellis (Netherlands, Yoko Ono, Cibo Matto, on and on) makes post-modern shenanigans out of apocalypses inner and outer, and from lines like “this bridal shower is bumming me out” in the unabashedly hooky “Vampire Rodeo” to “the earth will still breathe fire without you!” in “Left Without an Answer,” the stakes are high despite the flittering-in-appreciation-of-the-absurd mood of the tracks themselves. The title-track and “Evolve or Die” blend sonic heft and the experimental pop movement that “Vampire Rodeo” sets forth — the third cut is positively manic and maniacally positive — while “Left Without an Answer” almost can’t help but be consuming as it rolls into a long fade leaving intertwining vocals lines as the last to go, telling the listener to “learn to say goodbye” without making it easy. Won’t be for everyone, doesn’t want to be. Is expression for itself. Feels genuine in that, and admirable.

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Heavy Feather, Mountain of Sugar

heavy feather mountain of sugar

With not-at-all-subtle nods to Humble Pie and Ennio Morricone in its opening tracks, Heavy Feather‘s second LP, Mountain of Sugar, has boogie to spare. No time is wasted on the 38-minute/11-track follow-up to 2019’s DĂ©bris & Rubble (review here), and true to the record’s title, it’s pretty sweet. The collection pits retro mindset against modern fullness in its harmonica-laced, duly-fuzzed title-track, and goes full-Fleetwood on “Come We Can Go” heading into a side B that brings a highlight in the soft-touch-stomp of “Rubble and Debris” and an earned bit of Southern-styled turn in “Sometimes I Feel” that makes a fitting companion to all the bluesy vibes throughout, particularly those of the mellow “Let it Shine” earlier. The Stockholm outfit knew what they were doing last time out too, but you can hear their process being refined throughout Mountain of Sugar, and even its most purposefully familiar aspects come across with a sense of will and playfulness.

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Slow Draw, Yellow & Gray

slow draw yellow and gray

Don’t tell him I told you so, but Slow Draw is starting to sound an awful lot like a band. What began as a drone/soundscaping project from Stone Machine Electric drummer/noisemaker Mark Kitchens has sprouted percussive roots of its own on Yellow & Gray, and as Kitchens explores textures of psychedelic funk, mellow heavy and even a bit of ’70s proggy homage in “Sylvia” ahead of the readily Beck-ian jam “Turntable” and acousti-drone closer “A Slow Move,” the band-vibe is rampant. I’m going to call Yellow & Gray a full-length despite the fact that it’s 24 minutes long because its eight songs inhabit so many different spaces between them, but however you want to tag it, it demonstrates the burgeoning depth of Kitchens‘ project and how it’s grown in perhaps unanticipated ways. If this is what he’s been doing in isolation — as much as Texas ever shuttered for the pandemic — his time has not been wasted.

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Pilot Voyager, Nuclear Candy Bar

plot voyager nuclear candy bar

Freak! Out! The 66-minute Nuclear Candy Bar from Hungarian psychedelicists Pilot Voyager might end mostly drifting with the 27-minute “23:61,” but much of the four tracks prior to that finale are fuzz-on-go-go-go-out-out-out heavy jams, full in tone and improv spirit however planned their course may or may not actually be. To say the least, “Fuzziness” lives up to its name, as guitarist/founder Ákos Karancz — joined by bassist Bence Ambrus (who also mastered) and drummers KrisztiĂĄn Megyeri and IstvĂĄn Baumgartner (the latter only on the closer) — uses a relatively earthbound chug as a launchpad for further space/krautrocking bliss, culminating in a scorching cacophony that’s the shortest piece on the record at just under seven minutes. If you make it past the molten heat of the penultimate title-track, there’s no turning away from “23:61,” as the first minute of that next day pulls you in from the outset, a full-length flow all unto itself. More more more, yes yes yes. Alright you get the point.

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The Ginger Faye Bakers, Camaro

the ginger faye bakers camaro

Sit with The Ginger Faye BakersCamaro EP for a little bit. Don’t just listen to the first track, or even the second, third or fourth, on their own, but take a few minutes to put it all together. Won’t take long, the thing’s only 17 minutes long, and in so doing you’ll emerge with a more complex picture of who they are as a band. Yeah, you hear the opening title-cut and think early-Queens of the Stone Age-style desert riffing, maybe with a touch of we’re-actually-from-the-Northeast tonal thickness, but the garage-heavy of “The Creeps” feels self-aware in its Uncle Acid-style swing, and as the trio move through the swinging “The Master” and “Satan’s Helpers,” the last song drawing effectively from all sides, the totality of the release becomes all the more sinister for the relatively straight-ahead beginning just a short time earlier. Might be a listen or two before it sinks in, but they’ve found a niche for themselves here and one hopes they continue to follow where their impulses lead them.

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Neromega, Nero Omega

Neromega Nero Omega

If you’re not yet keeping an eye on Regain Records offshoot Helter Skelter Productions, Rome’s Neromega are a fervent argument for doing so. The initials-only cultish five-piece are Italian as much in their style of doom as they are in geography, and across their four-song Nero Omega debut EP, they run horror organ and classic heavy rock grooves alongside each other while nodding subtly at more extreme fare like the death ‘n’ roll rumble in closer “Un Posto” or the dirt-coated low end that caps “Pugnale Ardore,” the drifting psych only moments ago quickly forgotten in favor of renewed shuffle. Eight-minute opener “Solitudine,” might be the highlight as well as the longest inclusion on the 24-minute first-showing, but it’s by no means the sum total of what the band have on offer, as they saunter through giallo, psychedelia, doom, heavy riffs and who knows what else to come, they strike an immediately individual atmospheric presence even while actively toying with familiar sounds. The EP is cohesive enough to make me wonder what their initials are.

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Tung, Bleak

TUNG BLEAK

Some of the made-even-bigger-by-echo vocals from guitarist Craig Kasamis might remind of Maurice Bryan Giles from Red Fang, but Ventura, California’s Tung are up chasing down a different kind of party on 2020’s Bleak, though Kasamis, guitarist David Briceno (since replaced by Bill Bensen), bassist Nick Minasian and drummer Rob Dean have a strong current of West Coast noise rock in what they’re doing as well in “Runaway,” a lurcher like “Spit” later on or the run-till-it-crashes finisher “Fallen Crown,” which the only song apart from the bookending opener “Succession Hand” to have a title longer than a single word. Still, Tung have their own, less pop-minded take on brashness, and this debut album leaves the bruises behind to demonstrate its born-from-hardcore lineage. Their according lack of frills makes Bleak all the more effective at getting its point across, and while they’d probably tell you their sound is nothing fancy, it’s fancy enough to stomp all over your ears for about half an hour, and that’s as fancy as it needs to be. Easy to dig even in its more aggressive moments.

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Stone Machine Electric Post “Free Thought” Official Live Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on February 1st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

stone machine electric

I know what you’re thinking: But wait, isn’t the version of this song on the album live?

Yes, it is, and that’s exactly the kind of head-screwery I’d expect from Texas two-piece Stone Machine Electric. Indeed, the version of “Free Thought” that appears on Dec. 2020’s just-cut-and-paste-it-because-you’ll-never-get-it-right-otherwise Desert Records long-player The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld (review here) is the same one that is being played in the video below, captured at the Freetown Boom Boom Room in Lafayette, Louisiana, shortly before live shows evaporated in the face of global pandemic — timing, as ever, is everything.

Accordingly, much as Stone Machine Electric blurred the line between a live and a studio album, they’re here doing the same to the line between live and official videos. Just like they’ve been blurring the lines between jams and songs, psychedelia and doom and jazz, and so on and so forth all throughout their tenure, now past the decade mark as it is. Some bands fit easy categorization. That’s a line of which Stone Machine Electric are solidly on the other side.

At nine minutes, “Free Thought” — presented in its entirety in the video — is the shortest track on The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld by a substantial margin. And if you haven’t had a chance to get acquainted with the record yet, it’s streaming in full below.

Have fun:

Stone Machine Electric, “Free Thought” official live video

Free Thought off the album The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld on Desert Records.

https://stonemachineelectric.bandcamp.com/album/the-inexplicable-vibrations-of-frequencies-within-the-cosmic-netherworld

Recorded live at The Freetown Boom Boom Room in Lafayette, LA on 2/22/2020. Audio mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound in Dallas, TX.

Stone Machine Electric, The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld (2020)

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Review & Full Album Premiere: Stone Machine Electric, The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on December 3rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

stone machine electric the inexplicable vibrations of frequencies within the cosmic netherworld

[Click play above to stream Stone Machine Electric’s The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld in its entirety. Album is out Dec. 4 on Desert Records.]

Texas-based duo Stone Machine Electric are not by any means the first to put together a fusion of jazz and psychedelia, but they do it with a deceptive intricacy of purpose. Over the last decade-plus, guitarist/sometimes-vocalist William “Dub” Irvin and drummer/sometimes-noisemaker Mark Kitchens have explored the outer reaches of heavy rock and managed to capture a heavy psychedelic nuance that is both expansive and weighted. Perhaps most of all on the cumbersomely-named The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld, which is the three-song follow-up to 2019’s Darkness Dimensions Disillusion (review here), the underrated two-piece lean toward their make-heavy-things-float sensibility.

Positioned longest to shortest with the 20-minute “Journey on the Nile” leading off as the longest cut (immediate points), followed by “At Crystal Lake” (15:36) and “Free Thought” (9:07) rounding out, the band’s maybe-fourth full-length — it depends on what you count as an album vs. an EP, etc. — the album finds them working in three separate contexts and recording situations as they remain united in their atmospheric purpose.

The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld is instrumental in its entirety and arguably the “jammiest” work Stone Machine Electric have done since 2014’s Garage Tape (review here), which preceded 2015’s The Amazing Terror EP (review here), which begat 2016’s ah-ha moment of self-discovery, Sollicitus es Veritatem (review here), which begat the 2017 live album, Vivere (review here), etc., but it stands in line with impulses Dub and Kitchens have followed since their 2013 self-titled debut (review here) and the prior 2010 demo Awash in Feedback (review here) in terms of finding their place within the material itself and, even if they’re working with an overarching plan, doing so in an engaging and unpredictable way.

Effects play a larger role here than they sometimes do, but the spontaneity that feeds into the overall vibe of the record — the improvised-sounding nature of some of its stretches — is easily worth the minimal buy-in the band ask on the part of the listener. That is, they hypnotize, and whatever level of self-indulgence is inherent to an offering like this, it’s easy to follow where one is lead.

The destination, incidentally, is ethereal. Though “Journey on the Nile” enters a chugging progression at around 16:30 and from there rides a post-C.O.C. “Albatross” riff with duly respectful roll and nod, the bulk of the track brims with lysergic ambience to a degree that by the time they get there, they’ve set such a mood for the remainder of the offering that even the most straightforward of shifts feels like one is stepping on soft wax. Recorded in May 2019 with Josh Block at Niles City Sound in Fort Worth, “Journey on the Nile” also gives the first hint of how the titles play a role in telling the story of the album. There are no lyrics, and yet each track seems to capture something different in the overall sphere of Stone Machine Electric‘s sound.

“Journey on the Nile” references both the river itself and the studio in which the piece was put to tape, so what one takes away from that is that Dub and Kitchens are looking to show a process of cascading along with the underlying currents of the music itself. They do precisely that in the song, whether a given change is planned or not. Accordingly, “At Crystal Lake” nods at Crystal Clear Sound in Dallas, where it was helmed in July 2018 by Wo Fat guitarist/vocalist and regular Stone Machine Electric producer Kent Stump, and also references Camp Crystal Lake from the original Friday the 13th movie.

stone machine electric

It is especially poignant that Stump recorded “At Crystal Lake” (he also mastered the entire LP), since although Stone Machine Electric have worked under Wo Fat‘s influence throughout their tenure, it’s arguable that’s never been less the case than with the initial unfolding of the 15-minute track itself, the title of which would also seem to lean toward the cinematic atmosphere of the keys at its outset. Once again, a heavier guitar emerges as Kitchens and Dub move through the runtime, but they never lose that underlying line of melodic, almost whistling drone, and the effect is to make “At Crystal Lake” not only its own statement, but also a push farther-out than “Journey on the Nile” on stylistic terms, adding to the flow of the The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld on the whole.

What, then, about “Free Thought?” The last and briefest of the album’s inclusions was recorded in Feb. 2020 at Lafayette, Louisiana’s Freetown Boom Boom Room, which is a statement all on its own when it comes to the preservation of live music in a post-COVID world. But “Free Thought” refers both to the name of the locale and the spirit of the track itself, which is open in terms of structure and not quite as avant garde as one thinks of free-jazz as being, but decidedly unhindered in its readiness to go where it wants.

It goes toward a more driving push in a linear build and then spends its last few minutes in an at-first-mellow freakout — cymbal wash and guitar noise leading to a solo, a wild tempo pickup, then finally a chugging comedown, which Dub and Kitchens manifest with the kind of chemistry that only stems from artists able to have a genuine musical conversation. And that turns out to be what unites these three songs recorded over a span of three separate years in three separate settings: the conversation. It too is called out by the band, as one suspects that’s what The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies… is about, while …Within the Cosmic Netherworld is the molten soundscapes that each song manages to create in its own way.

It’s not surprising that Stone Machine Electric would be conscious of what they’re doing in terms of putting an album together, but the multifaceted nature of their intention is emblematic of what makes them so undervalued as artists. They jam, sure, and they do it well. But though its title is long enough to be over-the-top, The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld offers interpretive depth for those willing to dig into it as well as spacey nodders for those looking for a bit of zone-out mental escape.

Dub and Kitchens are able to serve varied purposes while staying united in their own mission, continuously avoiding predictability and forging a progressive creative identity through tone and rhythm alike. Tuning into their ‘frequencies’ can only highlight the strengths so readily on display here.

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Stone Machine Electric Sign to Desert Records; The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld Due Dec. 4

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 13th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

stone machine electric

I don’t even know how many times I’ve said this since 2009, but you know why I like Stone Machine Electric? Because I genuinely don’t know what’s coming next. Of how many bands is that true 11 years later? I’ve heard two of the three tracks on the upcoming album, cumbersomely titled The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld, and yeah, there’s a sense that William “Dub” Irvin and Mark “Derwooka” Kitchens are going to be jamming at this point — they certainly were on last year’s Darkness Dimensions Disillusion (review here), but as to what shape that’s going to take was still a mystery going into the new material.

“Journey on the Nile” tops 20 minutes and “At Crystal Lake…” is over 15, so Dub and Kitchens are plenty dug in here, but even between the two pieces there’s a decided shift in atmosphere. I’m keeping my fingers crossed to review before December comes, and there’s no audio from the record out yet, so I won’t spoil it more than I have, but the way I see it these guys remain way undervalued in their loyalty to their own creativity over genre or other concerns.

They’re a good fit for Desert Records, which has signed the band and sent along the following:

stone machine electric the inexplicable vibrations of frequencies within the cosmic netherworld

Stone Machine Electric – The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld

Record Label: Desert Records
Release Date: 12/4/2020

Stone Machine Electric is a Texas-based stoner rock duo best known for crafting a dark and spacious brand of psychedelic jamming that they have dubbed Doom Jazz. Formed in the summer of 2009 by Mark Kitchens and William (Dub) Irvin, the duo began to unleash their Wo Fat and Earthless inspired sonic explorations upon the earth. Since their inception, the band has self-released a demo, an EP and four full lengths, the most recent of which, Darkness Dimensions Disillusion, came out on Sludgelord Records. On top of this they have a live record, Vivere, which was released with Off The Record Label.

“Be prepared to experience the COSMIC NETHERWORLD,” warns Desert Records’ Brad Frye. “I don’t know what strain those dudes are smoking in Texas, but Stone Machine Electric is about to drop a psychedelic juggernaut. Wait ’til you hear the song Journey on the Nile. Stoked to have these guys on board!”

SME have toured throughout the Lonestar State and even made it out to Arizona, Oklahoma and Louisiana. Along the way they have played alongside groups like Mothership, Wo Fat and Jucifer as well as having performed at a variety of Texas festivals including End Hip End It, Fuzzed Out Fest and Heavy Mash.

Tracks:
1: Journey on the Nile
Recorded by Josh Block at Niles City Sound, Fort Worth, Texas on May 19, 2019
Mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound, Dallas, Texas

2: At Crystal Lake

Recorded by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound, Dallas, Texas on July 28, 2018
Mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound, Dallas, Texas

3: Free Thought
Recorded live at Freetown Boom Boom Room, Lafayette, Louisiana on February 22, 2020
Mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound, Dallas, Texas

Artwork:
Front Cover and Layout: Joshua Mathus

Photography:
Lynda Kitchens

Stone Machine Electric are:
Dub – Guitar/Vocals
Kitchens – Drums/Vocals/Keyboard

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Stone Machine Electric, Darkness Dimensions Disillusion (2019)

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Quarterly Review: Hum, Hymn, Atramentus, Zyclops, Kairon; IRSE!, Slow Draw, Might, Brimstone Coven, All Are to Return, Los Acidos

Posted in Reviews on October 7th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

THE-OBELISK-FALL-2020-QUARTERLY-REVIEW

Day three of the Quarterly Review. Always a landmark. Today we hit the halfway point, but don’t pass it yet since I’ve decided to add the sixth day next Monday. So we’ll get to 30 of the total 60 records, and then be past half through tomorrow. Math was never my strong suit. Come to think of it, I wasn’t much for school all around. Work sucked too.

Anyway, if you haven’t found anything to dig yet — and I hope you have; I think the stuff included has been pretty good so far — you can either go back and look again or keep going. Maybe today’s your day. If not, there’s always tomorrow.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Hum, Inlet

HUM INLET

One has to wonder if, if Hum had it to do over again, they might hold back their first album in 23 years, Inlet, for release sometime when the world isn’t being ravaged by a global pandemic. As it stands, the largesse and melodic wash of the Illinois outfit’s all-growed-up heavy post-rock offers 55 minutes of comfort amid the tumult of the days, and while I won’t profess to having been a fan in the ’90s — their last studio LP was 1997’s Downward is Heavenward, and they sound like they definitely spent some time listening to Pelican since then — the overarching consumption Inlet sets forth in relatively extended tracks like “Desert Rambler” and “The Summoning” and the manner in which the album sets its own backdrop in a floating drone of effects make it an escapist joy. They hold back until closer “Shapeshifter” to go full post-rock, and while there are times at which it can seem unipolar, to listen to the crunching “Step Into You” and “Cloud City” side-by-side unveils more of the scope underlying from the outset of “Waves” onward.

Hum on Thee Facebooks

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Hymn, Breach Us

Hymn Breach Us

Oslo’s Hymn answer the outright crush and scathe of their 2017 debut, Perish (review here), with a more developed and lethal attack on their four-song/38-minute follow-up, Breach Us. Though they’re the kind of band who make people who’ve never heard Black Cobra wonder how two people can be so heavy — and the record has plenty of that; “Exit Through Fire”‘s sludgeshuggah chugging walks by and waves — it’s the sense of atmosphere that guitarist/bassist/vocalist Ole Rokseth and drummer Markus StĂžle bring to the proceedings that make them so engrossing. The opening title-track is also the shortest at 6:25, but as Breach Us moves across “Exit Through Fire,” “Crimson” and especially 14-minute closer “Can I Carry You,” it brings forth the sort of ominous dystopian assault that so many tried and failed to harness in the wake of NeurosisThrough Silver in Blood. Hymn do that and make it theirs in the process.

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Atramentus, Stygian

Atramentus stygian

Carried across with excruciating grace, Atramentus‘ three-part/44-minute debut album, Stygian, probably belongs in a post-Bell Witch category of extreme, crawling death-doom, but from the script of their logo to the dramatic piano accompanying the lurching riffs, gurgles and choral wails of “Stygian I: From Tumultuous Heavens
 (Descended Forth the Ceaseless Darkness)” through the five-minute interlude that is “Stygian II: In Ageless Slumber (As I Dream in the Doleful Embrace of the Howling Black Winds)” and into the 23-minute lurchfest that is “Stygian III: Perennial Voyage (Across the Perpetual Planes of Crying Frost and Steel-Eroding Blizzards)” their ultra-morose procession seems to dig further back for primary inspiration, to acts like Skepticism and even earliest Anathema (at least for that logo), and as guttural and tortured as it is as it devolves toward blackened char in its closer, Stygian‘s stretches of melody provide a contrast that gives some semblance of hope amid all the surrounding despair.

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Zyclops, Inheritance of Ash

zyclops inheritance of ash

As it clocks in 27 minutes, the inevitable question about Zyclops‘ debut release, Inheritance of Ash, is whether it’s an EP or an LP. For what it’s worth, my bid is for the latter, and to back my case up I’ll cite the flow between each of its four component tracks. The Austin, Texas, post-metallic four-piece save their most virulent chug and deepest tonal weight for the final two cuts, “Wind” and “Ash,” but the stage is well set in “Ghost” and “Rope” as well, and even when one song falls into silence, the next picks up in complementary fashion. Shades of Isis in “Rope,” Swarm of the Lotus in the more intense moments of “Ash,” and an overarching progressive vibe that feels suited to the Pelagic Records oeuvre, one might think of Zyclops as cerebral despite their protestations otherwise, but at the very least, the push and pull at the end of “Wind” and the stretch-out that comes after the churning first half of “Rope” don’t happen by mistake, and a band making these kinds of turns on their first outing isn’t to be ignored. Also, they’re very, very heavy.

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Kairon; IRSE!, Polysomn

Kairon IRSE Polysomn

It’s all peace and quiet until “Psionic Static” suddenly starts to speed up, and then like the rush into transwarp, Kairon; IRSE!‘s Polysomn finds its bliss by hooking up a cortical node to your left temple and turning your frontal lobe into so much floundering goo, effectively kitchen-sink kraut-ing you into oblivion while gleefully hopping from genre to cosmic genre like they’re being chased by the ghost of space rock past. They’re the ghost of space rock future. While never static, Polysomn does offer some serenity amid all its head-spinning and lobe-melting, be it the hee-hee-now-it’s-trip-hop wash of “An Bat None” or the cinematic vastness that arises in “AltaĂŻr Descends.” Too intelligent to be random noise or just a freakout, the album is nonetheless experimental, and remains committed to that all the way through the shorter “White Flies” and “Polysomn” at the end of the record. You can take it on if you have your EV suit handy, but if you don’t check the intermix ratio, your face is going to blow up. Fair warning. LLAP.

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Slow Draw, Quiet Joy

slow draw quiet joy

The second 2020 offering from Hurst, Texas’ Slow Draw — the one-man outfit of Mark “Derwooka” Kitchens, also of Stone Machine Electric — the four-song Quiet Joy is obviously consciously named. “Tightropes in Tandem” and closer “Sometimes Experiments Fail” offer a sweet, minimal jazziness, building on the hypnotic backwards psych drone of opener “Unexpected Suspect.” In the two-minute penultimate title-track, Kitchens is barely there, and it is as much an emphasis on the quiet space as that in which the music — a late arriving guitar stands out — might otherwise be taking place. At 18 minutes, it is intended to be a breath taken before reimmersing oneself in the unrelenting chaos that surrounds and swirls, and while it’s short, each piece also has something of its own to offer — even when it’s actively nothing — and Slow Draw brims with purpose across this short release. Sometimes experiments fail, sure. Sometimes they work.

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Might, Might

might might

It took all of a week for the married duo of Ana Muhi (vocals, bass) and Sven Missullis (guitars, vocals, drums) to announce Might as their new project following the dissolution of the long-ish-running and far-punkier Deamon’s Child. Might‘s self-titled debut arrives with the significant backing of Exile on Mainstream and earns its place on the label with an atmospheric approach to noise rock that, while it inevitably shares some elements with the preceding band, forays outward into the weight of “Possession” and the acoustic-into-crush “Warlight” and the crush-into-ambience “Flight of Fancy” and the ambience-into-ambience “Mrs. Poise” and so on. From the beginning in “Intoduce Yourself” and the rushing “Pollution of Mind,” it’s clear the recorded-in-quarantine 35-minute/nine-song outing is going to go where it wants to, Muhi and Missullis sharing vocals and urging the listener deeper into doesn’t-quite-sound-like-anything-else post-fuzz heavy rock and sludge. A fun game: try to predict where it’s going, and be wrong.

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Exile on Mainstream website

 

Brimstone Coven, The Woes of a Mortal Earth

brimstone coven the woes of a mortal earth

Following a stint on Metal Blade and self-releasing 2018’s What Was and What Shall Be, West Virginia’s Brimstone Coven issue their second album as a three-piece through Ripple Music, calling to mind a more classic-minded Apostle of Solitude on the finale “Song of Whippoorwill” and finding a balance all the while between keeping their progressions moving forward and establishing a melancholy atmosphere. Some elements feel drawn from the Maryland school of doom — opener the melody and hook of “The Inferno” remind of defunct purveyors Beelzefuzz — but what comes through clearest in these songs is that guitarist/vocalist Corey Roth, bassist/vocalist Andrew D’Cagna and drummer Dave Trik have found their way forward after paring down from a four-piece following 2016’s Black Magic (review here) and the initial steps the last album took. They sound ready for whatever the growth of their craft might bring and execute songs like “When the World is Gone” and the more swinging “Secrets of the Earth” with the utmost class.

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Ripple Music website

 

All Are to Return, All Are to Return

all are to return all are to return

Take the brutal industrial doom of Author and Punisher and smash it together — presumably in some kind of stainless-steel semi-automated contraption — with the skin-peeling atmosphere and grueling tension of Khanate and you may begin to understand where All Are to Return are coming from on their debut self-titled EP. How they make a song like four-minute centerpiece “Bare Life” feel so consuming is beyond me, but I think being so utterly demolishing helps. It’s not just about the plodding electronic beat, either. There’s some of that in opener “Untrusted” and certainly “The Lie of Fellow Men” has a lumber to go with its bass rumble and NIN-sounding-hopeful guitar, but it’s the overwhelming sense of everything being tainted and cruel that comes through in the space the only-19-minutes-long release creates. Even as closer “Bellum Omnium” chips away at the last remaining vestiges of color, it casts a coherent vision of not only aesthetic purpose for the duo, but of the terrible, all-gone-wrong future in which we seem at times to live.

All Are to Return on Bandcamp

Tartarus Records website

 

Los Acidos, Los Acidos

Los Acidos Los Acidos

I saved this one for last today as a favor to myself. Originally released in 2016, Los Acidos‘ self-titled debut receives a well-deserved second look on vinyl courtesy of Necio Records, and with it comes 40 minutes of full immersion in glorious Argentinian psicodelia, spacious and ’60s-style on “Al Otro Lado” and full of freaky swing on “Blusas” ahead of the almost-shoegaze-until-it-explodes-in-sunshine float of “Perfume Fantasma.” “Paseo” and the penultimate “Espejos” careen with greater intensity, but from the folksy feel that arrives to coincide with the cymbal-crashing roll of “Excentricidad” in its second half to the final boogie payoff in “EmpatĂ­a de Cristal,” the 10-song outing is a joy waiting to be experienced. You’re experienced, right? Have you ever been? Either way, the important thing is that the voyage that, indeed, begins with “Viaje” is worth your time in melody, in craft, in its arrangements, in presence and in the soul that comes through from front to back. The four-piece had a single out in late 2019, but anytime they want to get to work on a follow-up LP, I’ll be waiting.

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Quarterly Review: Witchcraft, The Wizar’d, Sail, Frank Sabbath, Scream of the Butterfly, Slow Draw, Baleful Creed, Surya Kris Peters, Slow Phase, Rocky Mtn Roller

Posted in Reviews on July 8th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

the-obelisk-qr-summer-2020

Day Three is always special when it comes to Quarterly Reviews because it’s where we hit and pass the halfway point on the way to covering 50 albums by Friday. This edition hasn’t been unpleasant at all — I’ve screened this stuff pretty hard, so I feel well prepared — but it still requires some doing to make it all come together. Basically a week’s worth. Ha.

If you haven’t found anything yet that speaks to you, I hope that changes either today, tomorrow or Friday.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Witchcraft, Black Metal

witchcraft black metal

Four years ago, Witchcraft frontman/founder Magnus Pelander released a solo album under his own name called Time (review here) as a quick complement to the band’s own 2016 offering, Nucleus (review here). Pelander‘s Time was his first solo outing since a 2010 four-song EP that, for a long time, seemed like a one-off. Now, with Black Metal, Witchcraft strips down to its barest essentials — Pelander‘s voice and guitar — and he is the only performer on the seven-track/33-minute LP. Style-wise, it’s mostly sad, intimate folk, as Pelander begins with “Elegantly Expressed Depression” and tells the stories of “A Boy and a Girl,” “Sad People,” and even the key-inclusive “Sad Dog” before “Take Him Away” closes out with a bluesy guitar figure that features twice but is surrounded by a space that seems to use silence as much as music as a tool of its downer presentation. The title, obviously tongue-in-cheek, is clearly nonetheless a reference to depression, and while Pelander‘s performance is gorgeous and honest, it’s also very clearly held down by a massive emotional weight. So too, then, is the album.

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The Wizar’d, Subterranean Exile

the wizar'd subterranean exile

Making their debut on Cruz Del Sur Music, Australia’s The Wizar’d return from the doomliest of gutters with Subterranean Exile, opening the album with the title-track’s take on capital-‘c’ Classic doom and the pre-NWOBHM-ism of Pagan Altar, Witchfinder General, and, duh, Black Sabbath. In just 35 minutes, the four-piece make the most of their raw but epic vibes, using the means of the masters to showcase their own songwriting. This is doom metal at its most traditional, with two guitars intertwining riffs and leads on “Master of the Night” and the catchy “Long Live the Dead,” but there’s a dungeon-style spirit to the solo in that track — or maybe that’s just build off of the prior interlude “Ecstatic Visions Held Within the Monastic Tower” — that sets up the speedier run of “Evil in My Heart” ahead of the seven-minute finale “Dark Fortress.” As one might hope, they cap with due lumber and ceremony befitting an LP so thoroughly, so entirely doomed, and while perhaps it will be seven years before they do another full-length, it doesn’t matter. The Wizar’d stopped time a long time ago.

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Cruz Del Sur Music website

 

Sail, Mannequin

Sail Mannequin

A follow-up to their later-2019 single “Starve,” the three-song Mannequin release from UK progressive metallers Sail is essentially a single as well. It begins with the ‘regular’ version of the track, which careens through its sub-five minutes with a standout hook and the dual melodic vocals of guitarists Tim Kazer and Charlie Dowzell. This is followed by “Mannequin [Synthwave Remix],” which lives up to its name, and brings bassist Kynan Scott to the fore on synth, replacing the drums of Tom Coles with electronic beats and the guitars with keyboards. The chorus works remarkably well. As fluidly as “Mannequin” fed into the subsequent remix, so too does “Mannequin [Synthwave Remix]” move directly into “Mannequin [Director’s Cut],” which ranges past the seven-minute mark and comes across rawer than the opening version. Clearly Sail knew they could get some mileage out of “Mannequin,” and they weren’t wrong. They make the most of the 16-minute occasion and keep listeners guessing where they might be headed coming off of 2017’s Slumbersong LP. Easy win.

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Frank Sabbath, Compendium

Frank Sabbath Compendium

They’re not kidding with that title. Frank Sabbath‘s Compendium covers four years of studio work — basic improvisations done in 2016 plus overdubs over time — and the resulting freakout is over an hour and a half long. Its 14 component pieces run a gamut of psychedelic meandering, loud, quiet, fast, slow, spacey, earthy, whatever you’re looking for, there’s time for it all. The French trio were plenty weird already on 2017’s Are You Waiting? (review here), but the scales are tipped here in the extended “La Petite Course Ă  VĂ©lo” (11:16) and “Bermuda Cruise” (17:21) alone, never mind on the Middle Eastern surf of “Le Coucous” or the hopping bass and wah of “Gallus Crackus” and “L’Oeufou.” The band has issued live material in the past, and whatever they do, it’s pretty jammy, but Compendium specifically highlights this aspect of their sound, shoving it in front of the listener and daring them to take it on. If you’re mind’s not open, it might be by the time you’re done.

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Scream of the Butterfly, Birth Death Repeat

scream of the butterfly birth death repeat

Scream of the Butterfly made a raucous debut in with 2017’s Ignition (review here), and Birth Death Repeat stays the course of bringing Hammond organ to the proceedings of melodically arranged ’90s-style heavy rock, resulting in a cross-decade feel marked by sharp tones and consistency of craft that’s evident in the taut executions of “The Devil is by My Side” and “Higher Place” before the more moderately-paced “Desert Song” takes hold and thickens out the tones accordingly. ‘Desert,’ as it were, is certainly an influence throughout, as the opener’s main riff feels Kyuss-derived and the later “Driven” has a fervent energy behind it as well. The latter is well-placed following the ballad “Soul Giver,” the mellower title-track interlude, and the funky but not nearly as propulsive “Turned to Stone.” They’ll soon close out with the bluesy “I’ve Seen it Coming,” but before they do, “Room Without Walls” brings some marked solo shred and a grungier riff that scuffs up the band’s collective boot nicely, emphasizing that the record itself is less mundane than it might at first appear or the title might lead one to believe.

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Slow Draw, Gallo

Slow Draw Gallo

From minimalist drone to experimental folk, Slow Draw‘s Gallo sets a wide-open context for itself from the outset, a quick voice clip and the churning drone of “Phase 2” leading into the relatively straightforward “No Words” — to which there are, naturally, lyrics. Comprised solely of Mark Kitchens, also known for drumming in the duo Stone Machine Electric, Slow Draw might be called an experimentalist vehicle, but that doesn’t make Gallo any less satisfying. “No Words” and “Falling Far” and the just-acoustic-and-voice closer “End to That” serve as landmarks along the way, touching ground periodically as pieces like the strumming “Harvey’s Chair” and the droned-out “Industrial Aged” play off each other and “Angelo” — homage to Badalamenti, perhaps — the minimal “A Conflict” and “Tumoil” [sic] and “Playground” tip the balance to one side or another, the penultimate krautdrone of “Phase 1” unveiling perhaps what further manipulation turned into “Phase 2” earlier in the proceedings. At 33 minutes, Gallo feels careful not to overstay its welcome, and it doesn’t.

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Baleful Creed, The Lowdown

baleful creed the lowdown

Belfast’s Baleful Creed present a crisp 10 tracks of well-composed, straightforward, doom-tinged heavy rock and roll — they call it ‘doom blues boogie,’ and fair enough — with their third long-player, The Lowdown. They’re not pretending to be anything they’re not and offering their sounds to the listener not in some grand statement of aesthetic accomplishment, and not as a showcase of whatever amps they purchased to make their sound, but instead simply for what they are: songs. Crafted, honed, thought-out and brought to bear with vitality and purpose to give the band the best representation possible. Front-to-back, The Lowdown sounds not necessarily overthought, but professional enough to be called “cared about,” and whether it’s the memorable opening with “Mr. Grim” or the ’90s C.O.C. idolatry of “Tramalamapam” or the strong ending salvo of “End Game,” with its inclusion of piano, the mostly-subdued but swaggering “Line of Trouble” and the organ-topped closer “Southgate of Heaven,” Baleful Creed never veer too far from the central purpose of their priority on songwriting, and neither do they need to.

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Surya Kris Peters, O Jardim Sagrado

Surya Kris Peters O Jardim Sagrado

Though he’s still best known as the frontman of Samsara Blues Experiment, Christian Peters — aka Surya Kris Peters — has become a prolific solo artist as well. The vinyl-ready eight songs/37 minutes of O Jardim Sagrado meet him in his element, bringing together psychedelia, drone and synthesizer/keyboard effects to convey various moods and ideas. As with most of the work done under the Surya Kris moniker, he doesn’t add vocals, but the album wants nothing for expression just the same, whether it’s the Bouzouki on “Endless Green” or the guest contribution of voice from Monika Saint-Oktobre on the encompassing 11-minute title-track, which would be perfect for a dance hall if dance halls were also religious ceremonies. Experiments and explorations like “Celestial Bolero” and “Saudade” bring electric guitar leads and Mellotron-laced wistfulness, respectively, while after the title-cut, the proggy techno of “Blue Nebula” gives way to what might otherwise be a boogie riff on closer “Southern Sunrise.” Peters always seems to find a way to catch the listener off guard. Maybe himself too.

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Slow Phase, Slow Phase

slow phase slow phase

A strong if raw debut from Oakland three-piece Slow Phase, this 39-minute eight-tracker presents straight-ahead classic American heavy rock and roll in the style of acts like a less garage The Brought Low, a looser-knit Sasquatch or any number of bands operating under the Ripple Music banner. Less burly than some, more punk than others, the power trio includes guitarist Dmitri Mavra of Skunk, as well as vocalist/bassist Anthony Pulsipher of Spidermeow and vocalist/drummer Richard Stuverud, the rhythm section adding to the blues spirit and spiraling manic jangle of “Blood Circle.” Opener “Starlight” was previously issued as a teaser single for the album, and stands up to its position here, with the eponymous “Slow Phase” backing its strength of hook. “Psychedelic Man” meanders in its lead section, as it should, and the catchy “Silver Fuzz” sets up the riotous “Midnight Sun” and “No Time” to lead into the electric piano of “Let’s Do it Again (For the First Time),” which I’d kind of take as a goof were it not for the righteous jam that finishes it, referencing “Highway Star” during its fadeout. Some organizing to do, but they obviously know what they’re shooting for.

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Rocky Mtn Roller, Rocky Mtn Roller

rocky mtn roller rocky mtn roller

This band might actually be more cohesive than they want to be. A double-guitar four-piece from Asheville, North Carolina, with a connection to cult heroes Lecherous Gaze via six-stringer Zach Blackwell — joined in the band by guitarist Ruby Roberts, bassist Luke Whitlatch and drummer Alex Cabrera — they’re playing to a certain notion of brashness as an ideal, but while the vocals have a drunk-fuckall stoner edge, the construction of the songs underlying is unremittingly sound on this initial EP. “Monster” opens with a welcome hook and “When I’m a Pile” sounds classic-tinged enough to be a heavy ’70s nod, but isn’t so easily placed to a specific band as to be called derivative. The longest of the four cuts at 5:30, “Bald Faced Hornet” boasts some sting in its snare sound, but the Southern heavy push at its core makes those dueling solos in the second half all the more appropriate, and closing out, “She Ran Off with the Dealer” has both charm and Thin Lizzy groove, which would basically be enough on their own to get me on board. A brazen and blazing candidate for Tee Pee Records‘ digital annex, if someone else doesn’t snag them first.

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Days of Rona: Mark Kitchens and William “Dub” Irvin of Stone Machine Electric

Posted in Features on April 7th, 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. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan

stone machine electric mark kitchens

Days of Rona: Mark Kitchens & William “Dub” Irvin of Stone Machine Electric (Hurst, Texas)

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?

Fortunately, neither of us have been exposed to Covid-19. Our last show was on March 13, which was when things started getting shut down, and more tours were getting cancelled. Dallas/Fort Worth is a spot bands hit going to/from SXSW, so the following week would have had a very busy week and a time to see and make new band friends.

For us, we have not rehearsed or anything since the 13th. Should I mention that was a Friday the 13th? We were planning to relearn a few tunes for upcoming shows. We still will, but may be a while before we sit face-to-face and run through them.

Our 7” released on March 27th, but it felt weird to push really hard to further promote it. We make just enough from merch and shows just to cover the costs of the band, so we’re not living off of it like the few that do.

Dub has used the “opportunity” to learn how to work on and repair his own amps, and they needed it. Hopefully he doesn’t burn down his house. Kitchens has been recording some stuff for his Slow Draw project and taking care of his Mrs. who had a surgery just as this started going down — so he’s extra-concerned about getting or bringing Covid-19 home.

What are the quarantine/isolation rules where you are?

We are under “stay at home” orders but can go out and get groceries and food. Kitchens is fortunate enough to be able to work from home. He’s an architect that does 99 percent healthcare work, but currently isn’t allowed to go on site for anything. Dub is considered “essential” since he works in construction but has no work since projects have been put on hold.

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

Locally, and we imagine in a lot of other areas, people who rely on music for income or who supplement it working at bars have been doing live streams with virtual tip jars. We’ve also seen a few venues live stream bands playing to an empty venue.

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

Do what you can virtually if possible. Stay home and help everyone get through this. If you have the funds, help out those bands that tour for a living by ordering their merch. Throw something in their virtual tip jar if you see them live streaming. Support local small businesses because they’ll be the ones to suffer financially more than most. But for the most part, love one another and don’t blow this off and think it’s no big deal.

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