Days of Rona: Sam Wallman of Ahab’s Ghost & Shogun

Posted in Features on May 18th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

The ongoing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the varied responses of publics and governments worldwide, and the disruption to lives and livelihoods has reached a scale that is unprecedented. Whatever the month or the month after or the future itself brings, more than one generation will bear the mark of having lived through this time, and art, artists, and those who provide the support system to help uphold them have all been affected.

In continuing the Days of Rona feature, it remains pivotal to give a varied human perspective on these events and these responses. It is important to remind ourselves that whether someone is devastated or untouched, sick or well, we are all thinking, feeling people with lives we want to live again, whatever renewed shape they might take from this point onward. We all have to embrace a new normal. What will that be and how will we get there?

Thanks to all who participate. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan

sam wallman ahab's ghost shogun

Days of Rona: Sam Wallman of Ahab’s Ghost (Milwaukee, Wisconsin)

An Robinson Crusoe Thesis can only be as good as per their qualification; hence to provide a complete and all-inclusive service you need a writing resource that can accommodate you for various subjects and topics. How have you been you dealing with this crisis as a band? As an individual? What effect has it had on your plans or creative processes?

Things are weird for sure. I was in the middle of a job change when COVID hit, so that made for an interesting month where I didn’t do a whole lot, but I was worried whether I would have a job at the end or not. Fortunately enough, I’ve started my new job and it seems to be steady for the time being. For both Shogun and Ahab’s Ghost things have definitely slowed down quite a bit. Both bands took about a month off when Wisconsin was under Safer at Home with more strict restrictions. For Shogun, this year’s focus was trying play as much as possible in support of the record we released this last Friday. With COVID we were forced to pivot and change our strategy — the focus needed to change to writing and recording new material, learning covers, and playing live sets on social media. It can be difficult because it’s hard to always be creative or be in the mood to be creative, but we have enough small projects to work on that even if we aren’t feeling inspired we can move on and still be productive. For Ahab’s Ghost we are just now starting up again, Joe (the bassist/singer) and I laid down a couple new ideas for a new song last week. An independent radio station reached out to us to be a part of a live set series they are doing. As of now it sounds like we will prerecord a set and then they will have a live broadcast later on. I engineered two of the Shogun and Ahab’s Ghost’s records and run a project studio with some DSLR’s, so thankfully it’s been easy to change emphasis because we have access to the tools. The process remains for the most part the same, but the overarching landscape has definitely changed and its ambiguous as to what the future looks like.

The Poem The Dog Ate My Homework. Sometimes, it becomes much difficult to get the desirable scores, in spite of doing struggles in writing the essay. You may have made lots How do you feel about the public response to the outbreak where you are? From the government response to the people around you, what have you seen and heard from others?

I think the state of Wisconsin has done for the most part a pretty good job on social distancing , but I am little worried that we are opening up too quickly. I think the economic implications are pretty profound and it seems like we are in uncharted territory, so I understand that concern. However, humanity seems to have a pattern of wanting short term validation even though delayed gratification can lead to better results, so we’ll see! I think there’s a lot of (warranted) fear because of uncertainty in the world today. Everyone seems frustrated but I think that’s sort of unavoidable. I think the best we can do is stay involved and try to lend a helping hand when we can.

Application Letter - Allow us to take care of your essay or dissertation. Essays & researches written by high class writers. professional writers What do you think of how the music community specifically has responded? How do you feel during this time? Are you inspired? Discouraged? Bored? Any and all of it?

I think they have responded to the best of their ability. I’m most worried about people who earn a living on live music, whether it’s musicians, venue owners, or bartenders. One of the best venues in Milwaukee (shout out to the Cactus Club!) was bought just before all this hit. Everyone seemed to be very excited because the new owner kicks ass, and the venue was thinking about switching to an all ages venue (a unique phenomena in the beer capitol of the world). I really hope they are able to make it, but I imagine their story is similar to many other local venues. I personally feel invigorated and motivated to make and create — but I want to recognize that I am very fortunate not to have to worry about healthcare, lost job/wages, and all of the other concerns going around. I’ve been writing some new Shogun songs, and then working on a full length album for a side-project named Call Me Sparkles that I’m slowly forming right now. I am lucky because I play multiple instruments and run a project studio so I can come up with a rough copy of a song and have the guitar, drums, bass, keys, vocals, etc all fleshed out pretty quickly.

Having a hard time deciding on your research paper? Here are some tips and suggestions on how you can choose the Essay Writer Pointless Sites topics. What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything? What is your new normal? What have you learned from this experience, about yourself, your band, or anything?

We are all doing fine. Please buy music, donate, or merch from larger bands who are consistently touring acts if you are able to. Their lives have been more or less on hold since this started, whereas bands like us still have a day job to make ends meet. Our new normal is just taking it week by week until we can play live shows and sort of return to some normalcy. I really want to emphasize the need for rational thought, love, compassion, and grace in such trying times, and that we cannot let fear, anxiety, anger, and the torch mob influence our actions.

http://www.facebook.com/ahabsghost
https://ahabsghostband.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/shogunwiband/
https://shogunwi.bandcamp.com/

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Astral Hand Release Debut Single “Universe Machine”

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

astral hand

Perhaps you feel the galaxy could stand a good smiting. Fair. Meet Pay someone to http://cheapessaywritings24.com/buy-definition-essay/ - Proofreading and proofediting help from top writers. Why worry about the review? Receive the needed guidance on the Astral Hand from Milwaukee. The band arrive as the result of a maybe-permanent teardown of their former outfit writeresearchpaper com Macmillan Mcgraw Hill Math Grade 4 Homework Practice whats a thesis dissertation proposal for knowledge management system Calliope, whose third and seemingly final album, Phd Civil Engineering Resume - Proposals, essays and research papers of highest quality. begin working on your essay right now with professional assistance Chapel Perilous (discussed here), came out last year. Same dudes, new vibe, new name. Their first offering under the You tried to write a college essay? You will see that our Global Warming Term Paper will give you a reputation of a good student that is always well Astral Hand banner is “Universe Machine,” which indeed resolves its space-rocky groove with the noted threat of smiting, and which for something that sets such dire stakes is still a pretty good time. It’s a shift in sound, but they pretty obviously know what they’re doing with it. Not exactly like they’re strangers to each other.

You can hear the track here, and it’s a free download as well, because it’s the future and the future is in space.

Info follows. Have at it:

astral hand universe machine

Astral Hand – Universe Machine

Over the course of the past year the 4 members of ASTRAL HAND have been carefully programming their very first radio transmission. Al Kraemer, Vic Buell, Anthony Smith and Dan Dahl step away from their previous sonic incarnation, CALLIOPE, to allow for the expansion into something brand new. After spending 7 years on three full length albums through a changing member lineup, it was time to move on from the psychedelic circus. This may not be the end of Calliope, but it is ‘farewell for now’ as the band turns away from the past and into the future.

Channeling a much more cosmic spirit, ASTRAL HAND uses pop-sensitive, synth-driven melodies accompanied by tastefully heavy guitars and thundering drums for a deeper sound that will completely stand alone from their other projects. Expect the unexpected when their first album drops later this year. In the meantime, experience ‘UNIVERSE MACHINE’ and learn to fear the wrath of the flippant cosmic deities known collectively as ASTRAL HAND.

I’ll smite your galaxy
With my Universe Machine

Released April 1, 2019
Recorded at Silver City Studios
Mixed by Victor Buell IV
Mastered by Justin Perkins @ The Mystery Room

Astral Hand:
Al Kraemer: Vocals / Organ
Victor Buell IV: Guitar
Anthony Smith: Bass
Dan Dahl: Drums

https://www.facebook.com/astralhandband/
https://astralhand.bandcamp.com/

Astral Hand, “Universe Machine”

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Calliope Post “Sea of Red” Video; Chapel Perilousout March 31

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 16th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

calliope

I suppose it would be a real, real stretch to think of Milwaukee as just being very high desert, so we’ll skip that, but let’s say instead that when it comes to atmosphere, grade 4 essay writing http://www.ashoksom.com/psychological-statistics-help/ essay on my ambition in life pdf student homework helpers Calliope‘s When you write a research paper, Who can customized dissertation? It means you've taken the first step towards academic greatness. Chapel Perilous — their third album behind a 2013 self-titled and 2014’s Order an essay from a reliable click here service. Our professional ghost writers will create a perfect A+ paper from scratch! Orbis — there’s more than a bit of sand to contend with in terms of the sound of songs like the happy-to-drift “Creep No More” and, unsurprisingly, “The Dunes.” The new single, “Sea of Red,” takes a somewhat different approach, with a descending chorus that reminds of distribution assistant cover letter The source link essay on my village in english essay writing lined paper Snail‘s grunge-gone-heavy methodology while retaining its own flavor in terms of tone and pace.

One could probably spend all day pointing out neo-psych influences to songs like the building swirl of “Evil as You” or the percussive “Brujo,” but frankly I have neither the time nor the inclination. Instead, the How To Write Essays Betters for international journals likes Scopus, SCI,IEEE, Elsevier, Springer, Thomson Reuters, ISI, Ssci and publication support Dead Meadow nuances of “Sands of July” and the oh-fuck-yes-more-of-this-please atmospheric wash of post-heavy instrumental closer “Little Smoke” do plenty to signify where phd industrial engineering resume Custom Essays Essay Help university of california application essay online degree write a research paper Calliope are coming from and the winding, possibly-melting road they’re taking to get where they’re headed.

Over the course of their 10-track/40-minute runtime, the direction of that road changes a bit, but Hire Closing Shop0 And A Life today! Get rid of junk assignments, learn from the masters and enjoy college life from a fresh perspective Calliope always seem to have a lysergic underpinning to their intentions, as the oddball droning breadth of the title-track shows, or the languid, semi-Western flow in the verses of the earlier “Carry Me Home.” With emphasis on the intertwining of organ and guitar — the one often laying the bed for the other, as on opener “Astral Hand” — Calliope are able to bring a sense of drama to their songwriting without having to veer too far from traditional verse/chorus structures. Except, of course, when they want to, as on the already noted “Little Smoke.”

If the vocals of Al Kraemer sound familiar by the time you get down to “Brujo,” it might be because he also fronts Moon Rats, whose 2017 debut, Highway Lord (review here), was such a garden of riffly delights. If not, now you know. So there.

Romanus Records has Chapel Perilous out on March 31. Check out the clip for “Sea of Red” below — spoiler alert: somebody gets stabbed — and please enjoy:

Calliope, “Sea of Red” official video

“Drown me in your sea of red”

The new LP, Chapel Perilous, out 3/31 on Romanus Records.

Calliope is a heavy psych rock band from Milwaukee, WI. Drawing influences from classic and modern alike, Calliope pushes fuzzed-out guitar licks and organ-driven grooves reminiscent of bands like The Black Angels, Dead Meadow, Deep Purple and Pink Floyd. Inspired by the cinematic themes of Sci-Fi, Westerns and Anime, Calliope creates a sound that’s wholly their own.

It all started when Al brought his vintage Farfisa combo organ over to Vic’s house back in 2010 for some casual, hazy attic noodling. Now two studio albums and countless gigs later, Calliope is about to embark on their third studio release; Chapel Perilous. Recorded in a remote cabin in the northwoods of Wisconsin, Chapel Perilous captures the sonic amalgamation of electric fuzz, droning organs, thundering drums, crushing bass and soulful vocals. Chapel Perilous will be available 3/31/18 via Romanus Records.

Members:
Al Kraemer: Vocals / Organ
Victor Buell IV: Guitar
Anthony Smith: Bass
Eric Gomoll: Drums

Calliope on Thee Facebooks

Calliope on Bandcamp

Romanus Records webstore

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Quarterly Review: Carlton Melton, Horseskull, Dreadnought, Forsaken, Moon Rats, Son of the Morning, Jesus the Snake, Bert, Galactic Gulag, Band of Spice

Posted in Reviews on January 8th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Lodewijk de Vadder (1605-1655) - 17th Century Etching, Landscape with Two Farms

Today begins the Quarterly Review. You know the deal by now. 50 records written up between today and this Friday, 10 per day. As always, it’s a huge swath of stuff, and by the end of it I’m usually ready to collapse in a heap, but I’ve yet to regret it afterwards, so we press on. I hope you find something you dig in all this. I say that every time, but it’s still true.

Speaking of digging, how about that new logo up there? Thanks goes out to the Lord of the Logos himself, Christophe Szpajdel, who took on the project. This is the second one he’s done for the site, and aside from being in a completely different style from the last — I like covering a good amount of ground, even in logos — I think it fits pretty well with a variety of aesthetics. Could be doom, could be heavy rock, psych, stoner garage, whatever. Anyway, I’m into it. Hope you are too.

Quarterly Review #1-10:

Carlton Melton, Mind Minerals

carlton melton mind minerals

It might be decades before the dimension we live in has caught up to the plane from which Northern California’s Carlton Melton emanate their resonant transmissions of space-psych, but somehow time doesn’t seem to matter anyway when actually listening. To wit, Mind Minerals, the trio’s first LP since 2015’s Out to Sea, is an 11-track/76-minute whopper – unmanageable by any standard – but once it’s on, all you want to do is roll with it and by the time post-aptly-named intro “Untimely” has begat “Electrified Sky” has begat the droning “The Lighthouse” has begat the fuzzy swirl of “Eternal Return” has begat the 10-minute rumble-and-synth soundtracking of “Snow Moon,” etc., there’s neither escape nor the desire for it. Does it need to be a 2LP? Nope, but nothing needs to be anything, man. In the subdued boogie of “Basket Full of Trumpets,” the is-it-backwards slow freakout of “Sea Legs,” the experimental guitar ambience of “Way Back When,” headphone-ready minimalism of “Climbing the Ladder,” the shaker’s tension that sustains the otherwise wispy “Atmospheric River,” and the final fuzzy resurgence of “Psychoticedelicosis,” Carlton Melton thoroughly reaffirm their residency in the far, far out. Not that anyone was questioning their paperwork or anything.

Carlton Melton on Thee Facebooks

Agitated Records website

 

Horseskull, Chemical Winter Blues

horseskull chemical winter blues

With fluid shifts between Ripple-style straightforward heavy rock, rolling Sabbathian lumber and even some harsher sludge elements, the seven-minute “Black Dawn, Bright Day” sets a varied tone for Chemical Winter Blues, the second LP from North Carolina’s Horseskull. I’m not sure I’d declare any one side or the other the winner in the fight between them by the time the death ‘n’ roll of “Luckless Bastards” gives way to closer “Lost all I Had, then Lost Again” – itself a 17-minute noise-nodder triumph of, well, loss – but the trip through “Hypocrites and Pigs” and 10-minute centerpiece “The Black Flame of Cain” is unpredictable and fun to make in kind. Guitarist/vocalist Anthony Staton reminds a bit of Slough Feg’s Mike Scalzi in his cleaner delivery, which only adds to the album’s declarative feel, and the overarching groove surrounding from guitarist Michael Avery, bassist Robert Hewlett and drummer Steve Smith only reinforces the developing individualism.

Horseskull on Thee Facebooks

Horseskull on Bandcamp

 

Dreadnought, A Wake in Sacred Waves

dreadnought-a-wake-in-sacred-waves

There is very little beyond the reach of Denver four-piece Dreadnought. Their third album, A Wake in Sacred Waves (Sailor Records), blends open, psychedelic jazz, progressive black metal, folk and more into a sometimes-thrashing/sometimes-sprawling meld that recalls the promise of Grayceon and the poise of Opeth while at the same time casting its own impression in melody, arrangement, variety and scope. Opening with the 17-minute longest cut (immediate points) “Vacant Sea,” it brilliantly ties its elements together to present a story arc following in elemental theme from Dreadnought’s first two offerings in centering around the rise and fall of a water-born apex predator, the narrative of which plays out across its four intense, extended and resoundingly complex inclusions, which alternate between beautiful and terrifying in a way that leaves the line utterly blurred and irrelevant. Why this band isn’t on Profound Lore or Neurot, I have no idea, but either way, A Wake in Sacred Waves is a conceptual and manifest triumph not to be missed.

Dreadnought on Thee Facebooks

Sailor Records website

 

Forsaken, Pentateuch

forsaken-pentateuch

A spirit of classic doom metal abounds on Forsaken’s fifth long-player, Pentateuch (Mighty Music), which is the long-running Malta-based outfit’s first offering since 2009’s After the Fall, but though righteous fist-pumpers like “Primal Wound” and “Decalogue” carry an epic and unflinchingly progressive underpinning in their layered vocal melodies, a harsh snare sound and awkwardly punching bass stifle complete immersion. It’s less an issue in a cut like “Saboath (The Law Giver),” which has a full swing surrounding, but it makes post-intro opener “Serpent Bride” sound like a demo (unless it’s my digital promo?) in a way that sets an unfortunate tone in contrasting the obvious class and high-level execution of Pentateuch as a whole. It should be noted that even a rough production can’t hold “The Dove and the Raven” back from making its Candlemassian intent clear, but a record of such overall high standard should feel as crisp as possible, and particularly for being so many years in arriving, Forsaken’s latest seems to want more in that regard, despite the quality of the material that comprises it.

Forsaken on Thee Facebooks

Mighty Music website

 

Moon Rats, Highway Lord

moon-rats-highway-lord

I’ve already counted Highway Lord among my favorite debuts of 2017, but consider it’s worth taking a moment to underline the point of the heavy psych and stoner-fuzz wash that Moon Rats so vigilantly emit on cuts like the opening salvo of “Become the Smoke,” “The Dark Takes Hold” and “Heroic Dose,” balancing languid vibe and sonic heft atop gorgeously natural songcraft. Among the short-feeling 29 minutes and seven inclusions, with the title-track at the center shifting into “Overdose,” the deeply atmospheric “The Hunter” the and melodically spacious “Motor Sword” at the finish, there isn’t a weak spot to be found, and whether it’s the added dynamic of a key arrangement in the closer or the landmark feel of the hook to “Heroic Dose,” the Milwaukee five-piece tap into the there’s-no-rush-we’ll-all-get-there sonic sentiment that once made Quest for Fire so entrancing, while engaging subtle flourish of presentation that promises creative development to come. Bring it on. Please. The sooner the better.

Moon Rats on Thee Facebooks

Gloss Records website

 

Son of the Morning, Son of the Morning EP

son-of-the-morning-son-of-the-morning-ep

Newcomer four-piece Son of the Morning, with the crisply-realized three tracks of their self-titled debut EP, would seem right away to be trying to stake their claim on a piece of the Midwest’s doom legacy. Coiling between heavy rock swing and classic doom tonality, each cut, from “Left Hand Path,” which rounds out after its welcoming hook with a sample of what sounds like somebody hanging in the breeze, through the post-Uncle Acid riffing of “Release,” and the more ethereal, organ-laced psych of “House of Our Enemy,” offers its own take in a clearheaded and efficient five minutes, getting in, leaving its mark and getting out to make room for the next piece in this initial sampling. Potential abounds from vocalist/organist Lady Helena, bassist Lee Allen, guitarist Levi Mendes and drummer H.W. Applewhite, and the core question is how they might tie these elements together across a first full-length. It should be noted they sound more than ready to embark on that project and provide an answer.

Son of the Morning on Thee Facebooks

Son of the Morning on Bandcamp

 

Jesus the Snake, Jesus the Snake EP

 jesus-the-snake-jesus-the-snake

A 31-minute debut EP clearly meant to be heard in its entirety, Jesus the Snake’s self-titled treads some familiar ground in progressive heavy psychedelic instrumentalism throughout its four tracks – “Floyds I,” “Floyds II,” “Karma” and “Moment” – but with an inherent sense of mood and reach not unlike earliest My Sleeping Karma, its tonal warmth and emergent weight of groove find welcome all the same. Particularly for being the Portuguese outfit’s first public unveiling, the interplay of Joka Alves’ keys and Jorge Lopes’ guitar is immediately fluid, and as the bass of Rui Silva provides foundation to let drummer João Costa explore jazzy snare textures and stylistic nuance. It’s a beginning, and it sounds like a beginning, but Jesus the Snake also offers a richness and patience that many bands simply don’t have their first time out, and for that and the classic stoner fuzz of “Moment” alone, it’s easily worth the time and effort of thorough investigation.

Jesus the Snake on Thee Facebooks

Jesus the Snake on Bandcamp

 

BerT, The Lost Toes

bert-the-lost-toes

Officially defunct for some time now, Michigan’s BerT compile tracks from throughout their prolific and bizarre run in The Lost Toes (Madlantis Records), proffering a timeline of their post-Melvins avant weirdness that starts with their very first song, “Stuff,” and makes its way through various demos, lost tracks, noise experiments, etc., to the 11-minute drone-out “Return” at the finish line. The digital version on Bandcamp offers an origin story with each track – the 90-second noise rock blast “Human Bone Xylophone” was cut from 2012’s Return to the Electric Church for time concerns, and the subsequent “Commercial Break” (which, yes, is a commercial break) was a class project – but whether you engage the narrative or not, the enduring vibe remains strange and charming in its garage-fuckall, could-and-just-might-go-anywhere-at-any-moment kind of way. BerT were always good fun, and The Lost Toes serves as reminder of the personality they had together that was so very much their own.

BerT on Thee Facebooks

The Lost Toes at Madlantis Records website

 

Galactic Gulag, To the Stars by Hard Ways

galactic gulag to the stars by hard ways

Brazilian instrumental troupe Galactic Gulag traffic in cosmic heft across the five pieces that comprise their first full-length, To the Stars by Hard Ways, but there’s ultimately little about the album that seems to be the hard way. If anything, it’s easy: Easy to groove on, easy to let it unfold over you in a spacious psychedelic drift, easy to nod along as the bassline of “Escape from Planet Gulag” picks up from 12-minute opener “Home.” Easy even to get lost in the sax-laden swirl-bounce off-kilterism of “The Hollow Moon.” So yeah, guitarists Breno Xavier and Pablo Dias, bassist Gabriel Dunke and drummer César Silva might be overselling a sense of difficulty, but as “Space Time Singularity” rolls into the shreddy-style fuzz of 15-minute closer “Eta Orionis,” there are clearly more important issues at hand. Like space. And riffs. And tone. And everything else that’s working so well for the Natal-based foursome on this jam-laden debut.

Galactic Gulag on Thee Facebooks

Galactic Gulag on Bandcamp

 

Band of Spice, Shadows Remain

band of spice shadows remain

Former Spiritual Beggars and The Mushroom River Band vocalist Christian “Spice” Sjöstrand has been fronting the namesake act Band of Spice – formerly Spice and the RJ Band — for over a decade now, and Shadows Remain (Scarlet Records) follows 2015’s Economic Dancers (review here) as their fifth overall full-length. After the suitably-drunk-sounding vocals-only intro “Only One Drink,” the album rides the line between classically metallic tones and heavy rock riffing, a cut like “Don’t Bring Me Flowers” having little time in its 2:46 for brooking nonsense of any sort while later pieces like “Apartment 8” and “The Savior and the Clown” find time for more brooding and sentimental fare, and the penultimate “Take Me Home” and closer “Apartment 8 (Part II)” offer acoustic-strummed departure, so while the 51-minute runtime gives the 13-tracker something of a CD-era throwback feel and the songwriting the resolute in its straightforwardness, neither is Shadows Remain completely single-minded in its approach. A touch of grunge-funk in “Sheaf” goes a long way as well in lightening the mood, making the whole presentation all the more pro-shop, as it should be.

Band of Spice on Thee Facebooks

Scarlet Records on Bandcamp

 

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Moon Rats Stream Title-Track of Debut Album Highway Lord out June 23

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on June 8th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

moon rats

I wouldn’t usually make this kind of call outright, but I’ll tell you right now that come December, Moon RatsHighway Lord will be on my list of the best debut albums of 2017. A position has already been secured for the Milwaukee five-piece, who’ll release the seven-song outing on tape June 23 through Gloss Records, thanks to their memorable songwriting, perfect pacing, rich tonality, and unpretentious, laid back vibes. Songs like “Heroic Dose,” “Highway Lord,” “The Hunter” and “Motor Sword” — hell, “Become the Smoke,” “The Dark Takes Hold” and “Overdose” too — land heavy but smooth and interplay between two guitars and keyboards let the band shift fluidly between epic-sounding heavy rock and classic psychedelia in a manner that undercuts the idea of Highway Lord as a debut album at all.

Somebody will make vinyl happen. It’s just a question of when. But take a listen to the premiere of Highway Lord‘s title-track at the bottom of this post to get yourself introduced in the meantime and I think you’ll find yourself just as inclined as I am to want to chase down that tape in the interim before a CD or LP shows up. One can always acquire formats as they surface — the important thing is not to miss out. So don’t.

Art, info and audio follow:

moon-rats-highway-lord

MOON RATS – Highway Lord

A collection of Milwaukee music-scene veterans have formed a new band, MOON RATS, and are stoked to announce the release of their debut album, HIGHWAY LORD. The band itself is an amalgamation of musicians from bands (Calliope, The Rashita Joneses, Sonic J, Myles Coyne) whose styles range wildly from folk to psych and stoner rock.

The album developed a sound which the band has dubbed ‘stoner-psych rat-metal for motorcycle enthusiasts’ as it took them through seven creeping and heavily fuzz-laden tracks, which follow the path of realization for the legendary hero, the Highway Lord.

HIGHWAY LORD will be released on a limited quantity of high-quality cassette tapes via GLOSS RECORDS on Friday, June 23rd.

Tracklisting:
1. Become the Smoke
2. The Dark Takes Hold
3. Heroic Dose
4. Highway Lord
5. Overdose
6. The Hunter
7. Motor Sword

MOON RATS will celebrate their release on Tuesday, June 27th at Cactus Club (2496 S. Wentworth ave. Milwaukee, WI) with THE WELL (Riding Easy Records) and Asatta.
Doors @ 9:00 PM // $8 // 21+

Moon Rats is:
Al Kraemer (Calliope) – vocals, rhythm guitar
Jeff Grabo – vocals, bass
Victor Buell – lead guitar
Myles Coyne – keys
Brendt Dondero – drums

https://www.facebook.com/MOONRATSmke/
https://moonratsmke.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/glossrecords/
http://www.glossrecords.us/

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Asatta Release Debut Album Spiraling into Oblivion Sept. 2

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 20th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

asatta

Milwaukee-based doomers Asatta have two EPs under their belt — a self-titled issued in 2013 and last year’s Songs from the Blood Moon — and will make their full-length debut on Sept. 2 via Burnout Planet Records with Spiraling into Oblivion. A nine-minute sampling of the band’s wares can be heard in the form of “She Died Long Ago” below, and it finds the band nestled into a post-Pallbearer kind of mournful take, but expanding on it with their own dark impulses and emotional sensibility. September is still a minute or two away, so it seems pretty safe to say “more to come” on this one, but if you, like me, are just getting introduced to the band, “She Died Long Ago” should serve as a fitting introduction.

Release show is Sept. 17 at The Metal Grill (formerly The Blue Pig) in Cudahy, Wisconsin. Album art and info follow, courtesy of the PR wire:

asatta spiraling into oblivion

ASATTA to release Spiraling Into Oblivion this September | Stream and share new song ‘She Died Long Ago’

Spiraling Into Oblivion will be released on 2nd September 2016 via Burnout Planet Records

Formed in late 2011 by drummer Neil Pech and joined shortly after by guitarist Jay Denzer, vocalist Sean Anderson and bassist Joe Arenas, Milwaukee’s Asatta are arguably one of doom metal’s best-kept secrets.

With two EPs currently to their name – 2013’s self-titled Asatta EP and last year’s excellent Songs For A Blood Moon – 2016 promises to bring about big things for the underground quintet.

Eschewing any temptation to simply rehash old material, Asatta instead chose to enter Howl Street Recording Studio in July 2015 with producer Shane Hochstetler to lay down a fresh batch of new tracks for their debut album Spiraling Into Oblivion. A devastatingly heavy collection of doom/stoner rock mantras, the final set was initially carved into completion via an extensive two-year period of road testing, playing live on countless bills with the likes of Spirit Caravan, Windhand, The Skull and Ufomammut.

Out of the mind-bending riffs and extended jam sessions, the band also drafted in newest member Kara Phillips to explore previously untapped dimensions in their apocalyptic sound. Using keys and synths to color the band’s desolate din in swathes of cosmic noise – best captured on standout tracks ‘She Died Long Ago’ and ‘Breath Of Kali’ – for those currently holding court in Doom’s busy kingdom, make no mistake that Asatta are out to challenge the throne.

Spiraling Into Oblivion is the band’s first full-length album and will be released via Burnout Planet Records on 2nd September 2016. Ahead of its official release stream and share new song ‘She Died Long Ago’ here – https://soundcloud.com/sheltered-life-pr/asatta-she-died-long-ago-burnout-planet/s-cYKRk
Asatta:

Sean Anderson – Vocals
Joe Arenas – Bass
Neil Pech – Drums
Jay Denzer – Guitar
Kara Phillips – Keyboards

Asatta Live:
21st July – Frank’s Power Plant (w. Druids) – Milwaukee, WI
28th July – Frank’s Power Plant (w. Castle, Brimstone Coven, and Nadoula) – Milwaukee, WI
9th August – Cactus Club (w. Caustic Casanova) – Milwaukee, WI
20th August – Firewalk Threadz Fashion Show at The Metal Grill – Cudahy, WI
16th September – The Wisco (w. Blunt, Order Of The Jackal, and Cosmic Relic) – Madison, WI
17th September – OFFICIAL ALBUM RELEASE PARTY at The Metal Grill – Cudahy, WI

https://www.facebook.com/asattadoom/
http://asatta2.bandcamp.com/releases
https://twitter.com/asattadoom

Asatta, “She Died Long Ago”

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Moon Curse, Spirit Remains: Noble Pursuits (Plus Full Album Stream)

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on November 23rd, 2015 by JJ Koczan

moon curse spirit remains

[Please note: Click play above to stream Moon Curse’s Spirit Remains in full. It’s out Nov. 28 on Kozmik Artifactz. Thanks to the band and label for letting me host the premiere. EDIT: Stream has since expired, replaced with Bandcamp player.]

When it comes to a record like Spirit Remains, one of the aspects easiest to appreciate is its honesty. Milwaukee trio Moon Curse make their intentions as plain and up-front as they possibly can over the course of their sophomore outing’s five tracks/42 minutes: They want to pummel and they want to do it with riffs. The three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Matt Leece, bassist/vocalist Rochelle Nason and drummer/synth-specialist Keith Stendler (as of this post, Matt Presutti, who also designed the Spirit Remains cover, may join/has joined as a second guitarist, but they are a trio on the record) issued their self-titled debut in 2012 and sold through multiple pressings both independent and through Kozmik Artifactz, which also stands behind the follow-up. Both full-lengths share largely the same mission, but Moon Curse clearly took some lessons from their debut, and these songs find them sounding massive, professional and confident in their ability to complete the task at hand, and though it has stretches that slow to an absolute crawl like that preceding the galloping finale of closer “Witches Handbook,” there’s more nuance to their approach than it might at first seem.

That fact shows itself in the vocal arrangements between Leece and Nason on “Vicious Sky,” the layered soloing on the preceding side-B opener “Lord of Memories/Spirit Remains,” the added psychedelic flourish that the tambura of Andrew Shelp (Moss Folk) lends to “Electric Veins” or even the marching pace that opener “Beneath the Waves” sets and the spaciousness of its riffing and leads. Yes, Moon Curse want to cave your head in, and with the help of the recording/mixing job Nolan Treolo does (Tony Reed mastered), they just might get there, but while heft is at the core of their purposes, it does not comprise the entirety thereof. Rather, while their nod and grooving largesse definitely puts them in the post-Sleep riff-led milieu, it’s the distinguishing elements of sonic personality throughout that provide the band’s most memorable impressions, whether that’s Leece howling upward from under the riffs of “Beneath the Waves” or the quick turns of chug in “Vicious Sky.”

As was the case when I was fortunate enough to see them play live in 2013, a major factor in driving home their plodding, stomping, running groove — whichever it might be at any given moment — is Stendler‘s drumming. At no point on the record is he putting on a clinic, technically-speaking, but from the first ride hits in the quiet intro of “Beneath the Waves” through to the rampaging toms at the apex conclusion of “Witches Handbook,” he is persistently in the right place at the right time to bolster the work of Leece and Nason and make the most of the material at hand. The album breaks into two sides, though not evenly, and both offer rolling or driving rhythms, and the fullness of sound that a seemingly persistent wash of cymbals provides is never too far from the forefront of the album’s heavier moments. Still, it is the riffs in the lead, and that is true even as “Beneath the Waves” breaks from its initial rollout to a section of layered psychedelic leads, backed by Nason‘s resonant bass tone on an extended instrumental excursion marked out by minor-key twists tossed in before the eventual return to the central verse riff and the echoing shouts that cut through it.

moon curse (Photo by Luke Mouradian)

The aforementioned tambura does much to flesh out “Electric Veins,” but a slower tempo overall adds to the spaciousness as well, and shows immediate breadth coming after “Beneath the Waves,” even if it does return to a lumber more consistent with the opener before breaking into a subdued section of crashes and watery vocals that one just knows is setting up something huge. The drums pick up their pace on returning and push past a halfway point into a short but engaging solo and the eventual return of the verse for another cycle through, trading between Om, Sleep and High on Fire influences before finding itself in a more distinct solo section and the consuming cap of its near-11-minute span and that of side A as a whole. It is a finish worthy of the weight preceding.

Its march takes a little longer to unfold, but there’s plenty of room for a hypnotic intro in the 11:26 runtime of side B opener “Lord of Memories/Spirit Remains,” which ultimately lands on a janga-janga riff for its central figure, Nason and Leece coming together on vocals as it marches past its midsection at a not-at-all hurried clip and into the already-noted solo section, which is followed by howling and crashes that finish out before what one presumes is the split between the first and second parts of its title. “Spirit Remains,” then, comprises the last two minutes of the track in a subdued acoustic break topped with quiet psychedelic vocals, wind sounds or manipulated amp noise taking hold near the end as a ringing bell marks the transition into the feedback-soaked opening of “Vicious Sky,” which is the shortest song on Spirit Remains at 5:03 and a chugging riff that gets married with some post-Baroness shouts to engrossing effect.

Perhaps the most encouraging portion of the track is toward its finish, however, when the drums, guitars, bass and vocals all align to move into a section of washing leads and repeated nod for about the last 50 seconds or so. It seems to bring the various sides of Moon Curse‘s approach together in a way that, if it went on for another two minutes, I wouldn’t argue, but one can only fit so much on a single platter. A direct bleed brings about the quiet but tense beginning of “Witches Handbook,” which bursts open shortly after the two-minute mark for a drawling verse and goes on to recede and swell again before shifting into the galloping ending section, a touch of Morricone thrown in for good measure as Stendler‘s snare matches step with the guitar, which closes out on a solo and relative lack of fanfare as if to tease a sequel already in the making. Given the three years it took for Spirit Remains to surface after Moon Curse, I wouldn’t be surprised if one is, but either way, what the band accomplishes across these tracks is worth more than a passing glance en route to the next thing. The converted will have a deeper appreciation for its preachings, but Spirit Remains gets its point across one way or another.

Moon Curse on Thee Facebooks

Moon Curse on Bandcamp

Moon Curse at Kozmik Artifactz

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Moon Curse: New Album Spirit Remains Available to Preorder

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 12th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

moon-curse

You can hear “Beneath the Waves,” the first track of Moon Curse‘s upcoming second album, Spirit Remains, below. It’s pretty fucking awesome. I’m not going to attempt to sell you on it, but if you’re into big nodding grooves, spaced out atmospheres and riffs with tectonic intentions, you’d probably be doing yourself a favor in digging in. Spirit Remains will be the follow-up to Moon Curse‘s 2012 self-titled debut, which has been through several vinyl pressings at this point. Those have been both independent and through Kozmik Artifactz, and it’s the latter label which will issue the new record later this month.

Preorders are up now, and as you can see, limited numbers and all that for the first go-round. The PR wire had it like this:

moon-curse-spirit-remains

Three years after their epic self titled debut Milwaukee’s finest doom-trio ‘Moon Curse’ return stronger than ever!

On six tracks the trio shows all their trademarks with enormous power – the listener can feel the pain and blood the band undertook to create this album dripping out of the needle‘s groove. Moon Curse’s vision of doom oscillates from traditional Sabbathian riffs over lava-like electric wizard slowlyness to up-tempo grooves that high on fire could not have played better. This mixture is pure magic and will put a spell on you!

You know it! You love it! So… GET CURSED!

Recorded and engineered by Nolan Treolo
Mastered by Tony Reed
Cover art and layout by Matt Presutti.

Matt Leece: Guitars & Vocals’
Rochelle Nason: Bass & Vocals
Keith Stendler: Drums & Synths

Available as CD, MC & limited vinyl

VINYL FACTZ
– 166x Blue marbled White
(numbered MAILORDER
version)
– 150x black
– 200x transparent red
– Plated & pressed on high
performance vinyl in germany
– Matt laquered 300gsm
gatefold Cover
– Special vinyl mastering

TRACKS
A1. Beneath the waves 7:03
A2. Electric Veins 10:56

B1. Lord of Memories /
B2. Spirit remains 11:29
B3. Vicious sky 5:04
B4. Witches’ Handbook 7:55

http://www.mooncurse.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Mooncurseband/
Moon Curse at Kozmik Artifactz

Moon Curse, Spirit Remains (2015)

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