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 Becoming A Writer Essays for Students. The Expert Editor is the leading thesis editing service for students in Australia and overseas. As part of our thesis editing service, we have edited numerous honours, master’s, doctoral and postdoctoral theses and dissertations. 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 Our most extensive custom Examples Of Creative Writing Essays covers everything from PhD research to custom writing your full sample PhD thesis Desert Records long-player Affordable prices for http://www.csk.edu.vn/?help-writes in Australia Assignment helps provide report writing services in Sydney, Australia for university students. 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 check my blog - No Fs with our top writing services. Get to know basic advice as to how to receive the greatest essay ever If you are striving to 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 tale of two cities essay http://www.krajete.com/?creative-writing-internship buying a dissertation help how to write a good medical school admissions essay 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 phd dissertation sale http://www.tgdrives.cz/?mfa-creative-writing-fully-funded nbc10 homework help nature vs nurture essays 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 Why use Typewriter Wallpaper For Walls services? The most common reason for this is because students struggle writing dissertations. It is really that simple. After all, a dissertation is a long piece of work and it is unclear what details should and shouldn’t be entered into it. There are a lot of areas where a student may go wrong, and it is hard to keep track of what has and hasn’t been 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  Professional source links 24/7 online. We can write your term paper, essay, dissertation, article or homework on any subject. Expert custom writing service with 8+ years of experience. Get writing help from our custom writers online. 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  cv writing service bath follow url Com science help mass matter weight homework thesis and dissertation ucf William “Dub” Irvin and drummer/sometimes-noisemaker  Have you decided to Dissertation On Talent Management from a custom writing service? Learn which points to check out when you receive the piece. 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  Buy Custom Essay Writing Service from UK-Customessays that offers Argumentative Essay School Uniforms, Coursework writing services, term paper & dissertation The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld, which is the three-song follow-up to 2019’s  http://www.dpaircraft.com/?questions-for-research-papers questionnaire - get the required coursework here and forget about your worries choose the service, and our qualified writers will accomplish your task supremely well Let professionals do their responsibilities: receive the needed paper here and wait for the best score 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 Virginia Woolf Essays template is a format which any business planner would need while planning a new business or while adding more businesses to The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld is instrumental in its entirety and arguably the “jammiest” work  Dissertation Hotel Industry In Russias for intro to creative writing gwu. A. Dianes completed forms compile all the rage involved in shutting down communication. B desperately wanted to see her and administer medication through a unit and as much as , people continued to write to our children, (review no. Reams have been introduced in your class, do the two groups receiving content feedback Stone Machine Electric have done since 2014’s So, they need a qualified and professional Research Papers Vlsi Design! We are that kind of service that can easily help each student with any essay type, any format, any topic, and any essay complexity. Our service offers reliable writing assistance, which will surely help you to complete all your essay writing tasks effectively, easily, and smoothly. 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.

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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 Støle 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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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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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.

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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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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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Stone Machine Electric Revisit Origins on New 7″ Single out March 27

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

It’ll be a decade later this year since Stone Machine Electric first came to my attention with their debut demo, Awash in Feedback (review here), and going back to that release now, it seems oddly prescient toward the band they’d become. I don’t just mean in the two-piece’s penchant for playing weirdo jammy nuance and heavy crunch off each other in fluid-until-it’s-meant-to-be-jarring fashion as the demo did and they’re still wont to do, but in establishing the sonic bond between William “Dub” Irvin on guitar and Mark Kitchens on drums. With vocals from both or neither, periodic keys from Irvin and an ongoing creative development that’s taken place over the course of four full-lengths — the latest of them, Darkness Dimensions Disillusion (review here), came out last year on Sludgelord Records — the duo have built a dynamic that is entirely their own even among the jammier sphere of heavy rock and psychedelia and even among their many Texan cohorts.

They would bring in players off and on to handle bass alongside the guitar and drums, but none stuck, and I think eventually the band decided that they didn’t need a third. Time has only proven them correct on the issue.

Dub and Kitchens mark 10 years since the first time they played live as Stone Machine Electric by revisiting two of the cuts that originally appeared on Awash in Feedback. With “Walking Among the Blind” and “Mushroom Cloud,” the band take an opportunity to show how far they’ve come even as they recast some of their earliest work. But the most important factor to remember about Stone Machine Electric is that they’re never really at rest. Not just in the sense of working on new material or doing shows or whatever, but creatively and developmentally speaking. One hopes that, perhaps in another decade, they might reinterpret these tracks again, if only to make the point again of the ongoing journey they’ve undertaken together.

No audio yet — it’s two songs and more than a month away; hold your horses — but you can and should stream the most recent album under the release info below.

To the PR wire:

Stone Machine Electric Stone Machine Electric

Stone Machine Electric – Stone Machine Electric – 27 March 2020

It’s no secret that Texas does a good line in the psychedelic stoner trend, and one of the state’s finest exports are Stone Machine Electric. Coming off the back of their Sludgelord Records-backed fourth full-length in April 2019, the duo have wasted no time in plying their self-styled “doom jazz” both within and across state borders, with luminaries such as fellow Texans Wo Fat, Jucifer and Mothership, and a whole host of festivals.

In commemoration of the band’s first ever performance ten whole years ago, Mark Kitchens and Dub Irvin have selected two of the first tracks they ever wrote – take from their original demo Awash in Feedback – to be collated into a 7”, allowing vinyl enthusiasts to experience (or wax lyrical over) the crunch n’ thump of Stone Machine Electric’s wheels.

When the dark and woozy riffs slide in, there’s nowhere else they could be from than the Lone Star State. “Mushroom Cloud” has an instantly infectious rhythm going for it, aided by Kitchens smooth vocals and a swirl of freak-out jamming effects that give a perfect mental picture of their scorching live shows. “Walking Among the Blind”, meanwhile, is a more somber, grittier affair with a wailing blues-inspired solo over the dirty grooves.

Tracklisting:
1. Walking Among the Blind
2: Mushroom Cloud

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

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Review & Full Album Premiere: Stone Machine Electric, Darkness Dimensions Disillusion

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on April 25th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Stone Machine Electric Darkness Dimensions Disillusion

[Click play above to stream Darkness Dimensions Disillusion by Stone Machine Electric in its entirety. Album is out April 26 on Sludgelord Records.]

Stone Machine Electric are the bluesy, jammy, sometimes doomed sludge jazz called for by the times in which we live. The Hurst, Texas-based duo have consistently evolved over the course of their studio LPs, EPs, live offerings, etc., and for the last nine years, they’ve been an underrated act lurking in the crowded Lone Star underground, compatriots to Wo Fat and recording at that band’s Crystal Clear Sound studio, but never really touring and so never really getting the attention their particular take deserves. Darkness Dimensions Disillusion is their third album and first to be issued through Sludgelord Records. It follows behind 2016’s Sollicitus es Veritatem (review here) and its 2017 live companion, Vivere (review here), which were at that point the farthest yet that the two-piece of William “Dub” Irvin (guitar/vocals) and Mark Kitchens (drums) had pushed themselves, exploring nuanced reaches of dark psychedelia centered around the theme of the 2016 US presidential election, which was about as appropriate a subject as one could ask for their gleefully bizarre and malleable approach.

That willingness to discuss real-world issues had never been expressed to such a degree throughout prior outings like 2015’s The Amazing Terror EP (review here), 2014’s jam-based Garage Tape (review here), their 2013 self-titled debut (review here) and their 2010 demo, Awash in Feedback (review here), but it’s a theme that Darkness Dimensions Disillusion continues in its four component tracks. Perhaps not to the degree of having a portly rat king in a red tie on the front cover — though the diamond-encased staring-eye skull drawn by Kitchens is righteous — but still, it’s there in 12:48 opener “Sum of Man” and 14-minute closer “Purgatory,” the two tracks that bookend the album, as well as the all-caps “SAND” and “Circle” (premiered here), the latter of which is unarguably the most straightforward composition they’ve ever included on a record. That in itself is emblematic of Stone Machine Electric‘s steady creative evolution. They’re never predictable unless you count the reliable certainty that they’ll try new things. So it goes here.

And you don’t have to wait until the third of the four tracks to get to that point either. The very first movement of “Sum of Man” is indicative of their progressive bent, unfolding with surprising grace over the course of its first four minutes with a minimal but spacious stretch of effects ambience that’s greeted with melodic guitar/keys on a subtle linear build that’s nonetheless interrupted by the drums bringing about the shift into the first verse. Stone Machine Electric have done plenty of jamming in their time, but this is a different way of engaging atmospherics, and it’s more purposeful than a basic sonic meandering — nothing against that either — in terms of setting the mood for what follows and putting the listener in a more open headspace, such that even as Irvin intones “The sum of man is equal to his waste,” and “The sum of man/Can be measured/By the size of the void/Left upon the land,” the languid groove, while plenty heavy in terms of tone, remains laid back in its overarching affect.

stone machine electric

Repetitions of the title-line serve as a hook unto themselves, and after a few verses, Irvin and Kitchens take off on a fluid, solo-topped jam that seems to immediately signal no return. It feels earned. “SAND” is more chorus-based, but at over eight minutes long still has plenty of room to stretch out, and it takes advantage of it with a noisy midsection that parses out to angular turns leading into its solo and a slow, doomly roll that follows with some theremin or other synth accompanying, from whence they drop out and return to the hook in an effective showcase that says Stone Machine Electric know precisely which rules they want to break and when they want to do it in terms of working in and out of various structures, which is only fitting their experimentalist take and their level of craft in general. They are not just another band.

With “Circle,” though, they do toy with the idea of dead-ahead songwriting in a way they never have. At 4:45, it’s the shortest cut on Darkness Dimensions Disillusion by nearly half, and it’s a work of verse/chorus songwriting that pulls away from some of the burl in “SAND” in favor of a more melodic vocal that suits Irvin well, and shuffling snare work from Kitchens that seems to be a direct contrast to the track before. There’s a short guitar solo in the second half, and a sudden stop as if purposefully cutting themselves off before they launch into the next jam. There’s plenty of opportunity for such things in “Purgatory,” though, with a quiet keyboard-sounding intro to mirror “Sum of Man” for the first two and a half minutes and a smoother transition into the first verse — really embracing the “jazz” in “doom jazz”; no complaints — and bringing back the throatier vocals as they shift as well to meatier riffs and an unfolding nod that sounds like a culmination even before it serves as one.

Kitchens and Irvin are quick to move into more exploratory fare, but they hardly rest there, taking one movement into the next with a marked fluidity en route to the eventual noise wash that emerges with the vocals seeming to echo up from it as they move deeper into the second half of the track, guitar siren blaring amid the distortion flood until the whole thing goes away at the 10-minute mark and they work their way back into an easier groove topped with a highlight solo and the return of the keyboard line from the beginning of the song, which will be the last element to remain after the guitar and drums head out on a long fade, leaving on a note of quiet atmospherics like that which started the album in the first place.

One can only hope Stone Machine Electric continue to follow that impulse as they inevitably move forward from here, since their more confident approach to melody and more patient execution suits them so well, especially in “Sum of Man” and “Purgatory,” but as ever, they serve an intention toward experimentation, and that leads them to new and fascinating places throughout these songs. I wouldn’t bet on what their next record will sound like, but I’m willing to go on record in saying that they’ll keep moving forward, likely in a multitude of directions. They remain better than people know, and a band whose steady growth is matched only by the consistent quality of their output.

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