Quarterly Review: Mrs. Piss, Ulcerate, Shroom Eater, Astralist, Daily Thompson, The White Swan, Dungeon Weed, Thomas V. Jäger, Cavern, Droneroom

Posted in Reviews on October 9th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

THE-OBELISK-FALL-2020-QUARTERLY-REVIEW

Today is what would be the last day of the Fall 2020 Quarterly Review, except, you know, it’s not. Monday is. I know it’s been a messed up time for everybody and everything, but there’s a lot of music coming out, so if you’re craving some sense of normalcy — and hey, fair enough — it’s right there. Today’s an all-over-the-place day but there’s some killer stuff in here right from the start, so jump in and good luck.

And don’t forget — back on Monday with the last 10 records. Thanks for reading.

Quarterly Review #41-50:

Mrs. Piss, Self-Surgery

mrs piss self surgery

If “Nobody Wants to Party with Us” as the alternately ambient/industrial-punk fuckall of that song posits, most likely that’s because they’re way too intimidated to even drop a text to invite All students want to get only A+ but not all of them ready to spend their time on study. If you one of that busy student you can always Term Paper On The Movie The Help. Mrs. Piss over. The duo comprised of vocalist/guitarist We make it easy for you to buy website content from thousands of qualified writers. See how our website blog links can help you. Chelsea Wolfe and guitarist/bassist/drummer/programmer thesis writing experts Assignment And Persuasive essay on population control cu admission essay Jess Gowrie issue The True Story Of How I Wrote Someone Else's Master's Which Sites Can I Pay To Have My Homework Dones the British version of a thesis advisor. He would meet the tutors to Self-Surgery as an act of sheer confrontation. The screams of “You Took Everything.” The chugging self-loathing largesse of “Knelt.” The fuzzed mania of ‘M.B.O.T.W.O.,” which, yes, stands for “Mega Babes of the Wild Order.” The unmitigated punk of “Downer Surrounded by Uppers” and the twisted careen-and-crash of the title-track. The declaration of purpose in the lines, “In the shit/I’m sacrosanct/I’m Mrs. Piss” in the eponymous closer. Rage against self, rage against other, rage and righteousness. Among the great many injustices this year has wrought, that personal statement for college samples Discussion Of Dissertation Theme On The Academic Council Plagiarism Free essay of friendship thesis and dissertation addis ababa university Wolfe and Our http://www.team-sog.com/critical-thinking-application-paper-kannur-university/ service will catch your mistakes. Our editing service is staffed with only professionals in the business, each an expert in their area of study. Working through their editing checklist, they'll provide you with the best essay proofreading available for your university essay. Gowrie aren’t touring this material, playing 20-something-minute sets and destroying every stage they hit has to be right up there. It’s like rock and roll to disintegrate every tired dude cliché the genre has. Yes. Fuck. Do it.

Mrs. Piss on Instagram

Sargent House website

 

Ulcerate, Stare into Death and Be Still

Ulcerate Stare into Death and Be Still

As progressive/technical death metal enjoys a stylistic renaissance, New Zealand’s Dissertation Com Uacart. We take an incredible pride because of our high number of repeat your expediency, guys, do my physics homework, Ulcerate put out their sixth full-length, see here - Why be concerned about the essay? order the required assistance on the website Expert scholars, quality services, timely delivery Stare into Death and Be Still and seem right in line with the moment despite having been around for nearly 20 years. So be it. What distinguishes Buy Term Paper Online: Research Paper Proposal Example Apa online gives you a good opportunity to deal with your papers effectively and submit them on time even if Stare into Death and Be Still amid the speed-demon wizardry of a swath of other death metallers is the sense of atmosphere across the release and the fact that, while every note, every guitar squibbly, every sharpened turn the 58-minute album’s eight tracks make is important and serves a purpose, the band don’t simply rely on dry delivery to make an impression. To hear the cavernous echoes of the title-track or “Inversion” later on, how to write rationale of the study Writing A Cv For Academic Positions Sales Assistant Transfer how to write a college book report paper persuasive essay gun control Ulcerate seem willing to let some of the clarity go in favor of establishing a mood beyond extremity. In the penultimate “Drawn into the Next Void,” their doing so results in a triumphant build and consuming fade in a way that much of their genre simply couldn’t accomplish. There’s still plenty of blast to be found, but also a depth that would seem to evoke the central intention of the album. Don’t stare too long.

Ulcerate on Thee Facebooks

Debemur Morti Productions on Bandcamp

 

Shroom Eater, Ad.Inventum

shroom eater ad inventum

Nine songs running an utterly digestible 38 minutes of fuzz-riffed groove with samples, smooth tempos and an unabashed love for ’90s-style stoner rock, Are you in need of Cheap dissertation writings for your company? We can write one for you quickly and with the quality that you expect. Shroom Eater‘s debut album, Can I pay someone to http://www.fricktal24.ch/?journal-paper-writing. Yes, hire us to earn the perfect grades for your homework assignments. Ad.Inventum feels ripe for pickup by this or that heavy rock label for a physical release. LP, CD and tape. I know it’s tough economic times, but none of this vinyl-only stuff. The Indonesian five-piece not only have their riffs and tones and methods so well in place — that is, they’re schooled in the style they’re creating; the genre-converted preaching to the genre-converted, and nothing wrong with that — but there are flashes of burgeoning cultural point of view in the lead guitar of “God Isn’t One Eyed” or the lyrics of “Arogant” (sic) and the right-on riffed “Traffic Hunter” that fit well right alongside the skateboarding ode “Ride” or flourish of psychedelia in the rolling “Perspective” earlier on. Closing with “Dragon and Tiger” and “Friend in the High Places,” Get unlimited benefits from Makemyessay.com when you say, I would like to hire one of your expert writers to Dissertation Electre Jean Giraudoux to get nothing less Ad.Inventum feels like the work of a band actively engaged in finding their sound and developing their take on fuzz, and the potential they show alongside their already memorable songwriting is significant.

Shroom Eater on Instagram

Shroom Eater on Bandcamp

 

Astralist, 2020 (Demo)

astralist 2020 demo

I’m not usually one to think bands should be aggrandizing their initial releases. It can be a disservice to call a demo a “debut EP” or album if it’s not, since you only get one shot at having an actual first record and sometimes a demo doesn’t represent a band’s sound as much as the actual, subsequent album does, leading to later regret. In the case of Cork, Ireland’s analytical history essay Need Academic Writing For Graduate Students Commentary Pdf a professional business plan i write my homework Astralist, it’s the opposite. dissertation litterature quebecoise Dissertation Consultation Servicess contoh thesis proposal essay 3582 does the usf application have an essay 2020 (Demo) is no toss-off, recorded-in-the-rehearsal-space-to-put-something-on-Bandcamp outing. Or if it is, it doesn’t sound like it. Comprised of three massive slabs of atmospheric and sometimes-extreme doom, plus an intro, in scope and production value both, the 36-minute release carries the feel and the weight of a full-length album, earning its themes of cosmic destruction and shifting back and forth between melodic progressivism and death-doom or blackened onslaught. In “The Outlier,” “Entheogen” and “Zuhal, Rise” they establish a breadth and an immediate control thereof, and their will to cross genre lines gives their work a fervently individualized feel. Album or demo doesn’t ultimately matter, but what they say about Astralist‘s intentions does.

Astralist on Thee Facebooks

Astralist on Bandcamp

 

Daily Thompson, Oumuamua

daily thompson oumuamua

Lost in the narrative of initial singles released ahead of its actual arrival is the psychedelic reach Dortmund trio Daily Thompson bring to their fourth album, Oumuamua. Yes, “She’s So Cold” turns in its second half to a more straightforward heavy-blues-fuzz push, but the mellow unfurling that takes place at the outset continues to inform the proceedings from there, and even through “Sad Frank” (video posted here) and “On My Mind” (video posted here), and album-centerpiece “Slow Me Down,” the vibe remains affect by it. Side B has its own stretch in the 12-minute “Cosmic Cigar (Oumuamua),” and sandwiched between the three-minute stomper “Half Thompson” and the acoustic, harmonized grunge-blues closer “River of a Ghost,” it seems that what Daily Thompson held back about the LP is no less powerful than what they revealed. It’s still a party, it’s just a party where every room has something different happening.

Daily Thompson on Thee Facebooks

Noisolution website

 

The White Swan, Nocturnal Transmission

The White Swan Nocturnal Transmission

Following up 2018’s Touch Taste Destroy (review here), Ontario’s The White Swan present their fourth EP in Nocturnal Transmission. That’s four EPs, in a row, from 2016-2020. If the trio — which, yes, includes Kittie‘s Mercedes Lander on vocals, drums, guitar and keys — were waiting to figure out their sound before putting out a first full-length, they were there two years ago, if not before. One is left to assume that the focus on short releases is — at least for now — an aesthetic choice. Like its predecessor, Nocturnal Transmission offers three circa-five-minute big-riffers topped with Lander‘s floating melodic vocals. The highlight here is “Purple,” and unlike any of the other The White Swan EPs, this one includes a fourth track in a cover of Tracy Bonham‘s “Tell it to the Sky,” given likewise heft and largesse. I don’t know what’s stopping this band from putting out an album, but I’ll take another EP in the meantime, sure.

The White Swan on Thee Facebooks

The White Swan on Bandcamp

 

Dungeon Weed, Mind Palace of the Mushroom God

Dungeon Weed Mind Palace of the Mushroom God

A quarantine project of Dmitri Mavra from Skunk and Slow Phase, Dungeon Weed is dug-in stoner idolatry, pure and simple. Mavra, joined by drummer Chris McGrew and backing vocalist Thia Moonbrook, metes out riff after feedback-soaked, march-ready, nod-ready, dirt-toned riff, and it doesn’t matter if it’s the doomier tolling bell of “Sorcerer with the Skull Face” or the tongue-in-cheek hook of “Beholder Gonna Fuck You Up” or the brash sludge that ensues across the aptly-named “Lumbering Hell,” all layered solos and whatnot, the important thing is that by the time “Mind Palace” comes around, you’re either out or you’re in, and once you make that choice there’s no going back on it. Opener “Orcus Immortalis/Vox Mysterium” tells the tale (or part of it, as regards the overarching narrative), and if ever there was a band that could and would make a song called “Black Pudding” sound heavy, well, there’s Dungeon Weed for you. Dungeon Weed, man. Don’t overthink it.

Dungeon Weed on Thee Facebooks

Forbidden Place Records website

 

Thomas V. Jäger, A Solitary Plan

thomas v jager a solitary plan

The challenge of rendering songcraft in the nude can be a daunting one for someone in a heavy band doing a solo/acoustic release, but it’s a challenge Thomas V. Jäger of Monolord meets with ease on the home-recorded A Solitary Plan, his solo debut. Those familiar with his work in Monolord will recognize some of the effects used on his vocals, but in the much, much quieter context of the seven-song/29-minute solo release — Jäger plays everything except the Mellotron on the leadoff title-track — they lend not only a spaciousness but a feeling of acid folk serenity to “Creature of the Deep” and “It’s Alright,” which follows. Mixed/mastered by Kalle Lilja of Långfinger, A Solitary Plan is ultimately an exploration on Jäger‘s part of working in this form, but it succeeds in both its most minimal stretches and in the electric-inclusive “The Drone” and “Goodbye” ahead of the buzzing synth-laced closer “The Bitter End.” It would be a surprise if this is the only solo release Jäger ever does, since so much of what takes place throughout feels like a foundation for future work.

Thomas V. Jäger on Bandcamp

RidingEasy Records website

 

Cavern, Powdered

CAVERN POWDERED

Change has been the modus operandi of Cavern for a while now. They still show some semblance of their post-hardcore roots on their new full-length, Powdered, but having brought in bassist/vocalist Rose Heater in 2018 and sometime between then and now let out of Baltimore for Morgantown, West Virginia, their sonic allegiance to a heavier-ended post-rock comes through more than ever before. Guitarist/synthesist Zach Harkins winds lead lines around Heater‘s bass on “Grey,” and Stephen Schrock‘s drums emphasize tension to coincide, but the fluidity across the 24-minute LP is of a kind that’s genuinely new to the band, and the soul in Heater‘s vocals carries the material to someplace else entirely. A song like “Dove” presents a tonal fullness that the title-track seems just to hint at, but the emphasis here is on dynamic, not on doing one thing only or locking their approach into a single mindset. As Heater‘s debut with them, Powdered finds them refreshed and renewed of purpose.

Cavern on Thee Facebooks

Cavern on Bandcamp

 

Droneroom, …The Other Doesn’t

droneroom the other doesnt

Droneroom is the solo vehicle of guitarist Blake Edward Conley and with …The Other Doesn’t, experiments of varying length and degree of severity are brought to bear. The abiding feel is spacious, lonely and cinematic as one might expect for such guitar-based soundscaping, but “Casual-Lethal Narcissism” and “The Last Time Someone Speaks Your Name” do have some measure of peace to go with their foreboding and troubling atmospherics. An obvious focal point is the 15-minute dronefest “This Circle of Ribs,” which feels more forward and striking than someone of Droneroom‘s surrounding material, but it’s all on a relative scale, and across the board Conley remains a safe social distance away from structural traditionalist. Recorded during Summer 2020, it is an album that conveys the anxiety and paranoia of this year, and while that can be a daunting thing to face in such a way or to let oneself really engage with as a listener — shit, it’s hard enough just living through — one of the functions of good art is to challenge perceptions of what it can be. Worth keeping in mind for “Home Can Be a Frightening Place.”

Droneroom on Thee Facebooks

Humanhood Recordings on Bandcamp

 

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Friday Full-Length: Karma to Burn, Karma to Burn

Posted in Bootleg Theater on December 9th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

Karma to Burn, Karma to Burn (1997)

They weren’t yet the band they wanted to be, and it’s important to acknowledge that at the outset. Seven years ago, when I spoke to now-former Roadrunner Records A&R head honcho Monte Conner about his label’s involvement with the makings of stoner rock in the late ’90s, Karma to Burn were bound to come up. In addition to having issued the Burn One Up: Music for Stoners compilation in 1997 (which featured the West Virginian outfit alongside a very early appearance from Queens of the Stone Age with a different singer, as well as The Heads, Gnu, Sleep, Blind Dog, Fu Manchu, Spiritual Beggars, Slaprocket and others), and though they were of course known more as a metal label and were releasing the likes of Type O Negative, Life of Agony, Fear Factory and Sepultura at the time, Roadrunner was the party responsible for bringing Karma to Burn‘s self-titled debut to public attention — part of a kind of under-the-underground involvement in what was then a burgeoning post-Kyuss movement of heavy rock. In the almost two decades since its release, and of course in light of all the instrumental work the band has done since, the narrative about the label forcing them to get a singer has become an essential piece of context. Here’s what Conner had to say in 2009:

“Basically, we saw Karma to Burn for the first time here in New York at a club called Brownies, myself and Howie Abrams, the guy who led the charge in signing the band. We saw them as an instrumental trio and were just absolutely floored at the power. You could listen to Karma to Burn even without vocals and it was still captivating, at least for one record. It might wear thin after a while, especially with songs called ‘Thirty-Nine,’ ‘Forty,’ ‘Forty-Two,’ it’s a little hard to keep track at that point.

But we did see Karma and we were absolutely floored and we thought, ‘God, if these guys get a singer there’s gonna be no stopping them!’ At the time we signed the band, the whole courtship process and signing the band, the band at that point did want to get a singer and agreed to get a singer, and it was only after frustration of not finding someone that I think the band realized, ‘Hey, maybe we’re better without a singer, we’re more unique this way, we don’t need a singer.’

At that point, they told us ‘No singer,’ and we were objecting because we signed them with the intention of getting a singer, and as I said, that was laid out from the beginning and when we signed them, they said, ‘Yes, we are going to get a singer.’ So they kind of changed the game on us, and they had already recorded the entire record prior to having a singer, figuring, ‘We’ll get the singer and he’ll just go in and lay down the tracks.’ Eventually, due to pressure from us, the band still couldn’t find a singer and had a local friend of theirs, Jason Jarosz, come in and put down vocals.

Not traditional vocals at all, but these really sinister, kind of strange — as you can hear on the record — kind of weird vocals, that we thought were cool, even though they were not typical vocals at all. It kind of gave the whole thing an eerie, avant garde feeling. So we accepted it, we were okay with it, but I think in the end, it really wasn’t the type of vocals we imagined. I think we were settling at that point, just because we wanted to get the record out.

The band went along with it to appease us, but in the end I don’t think they liked this guy’s vocals. They were very rebellious and were like, ‘Fuck this, we don’t want a singer,’ so they basically parted ways with this guy and decided to continue on as an instrumental band and at that point we weren’t interested in continuing, so we dropped them…” — Monte Conner (more here)

I think my favorite part about that entire quote is “They were very rebellious,” since it basically encapsulates the entire career of Karma to Burn and particularly their sole remaining founder, guitarist Will Mecum, whose perspective seems to have always been a middle finger in the face of anyone who’s going to say otherwise on just about any issue. I don’t know if I’ve ever spoken about the band, who released the Mountain Czar EP (review here) and toured with The Obsessed this year, without calling their sound “bullshit-free,” and indeed, I consider that to be their defining sonic feature. Right up there with “riffs.”

They are and have for a long time been the straightest line to heavy rock and roll, and while records like 1999’s Wild Wonderful Purgatory and 2001’s Almost Heathen provided the defining hours for their approach — Mecum along with bassist Rich Mullins and drummer Rob Oswald — the self-titled has always been by its very nature a standout from everything that followed it. Jarosz‘s vocals, quieter and less burly than what, say, Sixty Watt Shaman were doing at the time, had an attitude all their own, and while one might find some politically suspect lyrics in “Mt. Penetrator,” there’s an underlying sad blue-collar poetry to the words that gets lost in a lot of modern Southern rock, which is more about the boozing, the womanizing, the party-as-escape. Karma to Burn‘s self-titled, which also introduced the band’s signature numbered instrumentals with “Eight,” “Thirteen” and “Six” after the landmark hook of opener “Ma Petite Mort,” undercut that impulse to a degree and came across as an emotionally richer and somewhat more honest offering because of it.

Maybe don’t tell that to the band. In 2012, they’d revisit this material and release it completely instrumental as Slight Reprise, a fitting swansong for the then-reformed Mecum/Mullins/Oswald lineup. Mecum has of course carried the band forward, working now with a strong European focus and the rhythm section of bassist Eric Clutter and drummer Evan Devine. Their last full-length was 2014’s Arch Stanton (review here) — Clutter was not yet in the lineup — but they’ve been reborn as a touring act. This fall, they made the rounds in Europe and played Desertfest in Athens as well as Keep it Low, and having been fortunate enough to see them this summer at Maryland Doom Fest (review here), I can attest to the drive and push they emit from a stage being as middle-finger as ever, and so, true to the foundation they laid with this self-titled debut.

As always, I hope you enjoy.

How was your week? Mine went by in a blur of corporately-tinged workflow process acronyms — letters that meant nothing to me until a few months ago (and some that still don’t). Made me think maybe I should come up with important-sounding abbreviations for what I do here. “Why did you get up at 5AM?” “I had a big RWM to get through,” where all RWM means is “review-writing in the morning.” Or, more appropriately, “I had to finish the FFL.” Friday Full-Length.

You get the idea.

However, since I don’t really talk about the site with anyone, it would pretty much be an inside joke with myself, and that seems kind of sad in this context.

Before I forget — THANK YOU to everyone who has submitted their best-of 2016 list so far to the YEP (Year-End Poll). If you haven’t yet, please do. As of right now, the tally stands at 370 submissions. I hope by the end of the weekend to pass 388, which was last year’s total for the entire month of December. Not bad for being less than half the time. I am humbled and deeply grateful.

You might’ve noticed the Album Covers that Kicked Ass in 2016 list didn’t go up this week. I had crazytimes at the office and though the piece about that Comet Control track being my favorite song of the year turned out to be a doozy in its own right, it required much less time on the back end than tracking down and laying out different art jpegs would. I’ll get to work on it this weekend — I also have some fest writeups to do — and have it up on Monday, disaster pending.

Speaking of “subject to change,” here’s the rest of what’s in the ol’ notes for next week:

Mon.: Art list (who knew?) and new video from Sun Blood Stories. Don’t miss either of them.
Tue.: News on the SonicBlast Moledo fest and new recordings from Australia’s Merchant, an album stream from Elbrus and video from Crippled Black Phoenix. Don’t miss any of that either.
Wed.: Track premiere from Indian metallers Rudra.
Thu.: Review of the new Sgt. Sunshine.
Fri.: Review of the new T.G. Olson.

We get kind of tentative there toward the end of the week, and I’m basically doing myself favors at this point in terms of picking what I want to write about. Anytime you see me covering something from T.G. Olson or his main outfit, Across Tundras, you can pretty much guess that I’m doing so in order to maximize enjoyment of the day. Not that I don’t dig writing about most of what I write about — no point to the site otherwise — but as you know if you’ve already made out your top 20 and turned it in for the Year-End Poll, these things are relative.

Hey, have a great weekend, alright? Please do that.

Largely at the insistence of The Patient Mrs., I went ahead and took Monday off from work (will make sure to put up my “OOO”). She rather correctly asserted that I needed a three-day weekend. No argument, I just don’t get paid for the time I don’t work, so it’s money out of my pocket to stay home. Still, money ain’t everything and sometimes those hours are worth their weight in gold. So I’ll be around. In my pajamas. Sitting on ass. Hopefully playing Final Fantasy. And writing. And that’s my plan.

Whatever you’re up to, please be safe and have a great time. Thanks for reading this long-ass post if you have, and we’ll see you back here Monday. In the meantime, please check out the forum and radio stream.

The Obelisk Forum

The Obelisk Radio

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Karma to Burn Post “62” Video; Euro Tour Starts Next Month

Posted in Bootleg Theater on February 9th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

karma to burn

The new Karma to Burn video begins with guitarist/founder Will Mecum walking down a very European hallway and then down a very European street before entering a very European bar in Biel, Switzerland, which, wouldn’t you know it, has a Marshall full stack and a brew awaiting his arrival. Mecum proceeds to riff out in the bar, in the bar’s bathroom, in a hockey arena, and finally, in a liquor store surrounded by beer bottles. He’s the only member of the West Virginian trio — rounded out by bassist Eric Clutter and drummer Evan Devine — to be seen in the clip, and if there was any lingering doubt about whose show the band is at this point, that should pretty much put it to rest.

karma to burn mountain czarKarma to Burn release a new EP, Mountain Czar, later this month on Rodeostar Records, and the song “62” that features in the clip comes from that EP and has also been issued as an advance single. All this is to precede the band’s next European tour, which starts March 12 and features Sons of Morpheus in the support slot. Karma to Burn have been on the road steadily since the release of their latest full-length, Arch Stanton (review here), in 2014. They toured hard in the US and Europe both last year.

In addition to this upcoming run through Europe, they’ll also be playing the Maryland Doom Fest (info here) this summer, and I highly doubt that’ll be the last date they announce for the year. You can see from the list of tour dates under the video below, they’re not exactly shy about getting out there:

Karma to Burn, “62” official video

Single “62” is available! Check out iTunes store or your preferred digital download choice. EP “Mountain Czar” out on 26 February 2016.

Video directed, filmed & edited by Roberto Miola.

KARMA TO BURN –EUROPEAN TOUR 2016 (with support from Sons of Morpheus)
12.03 – Bikini Test, Le Chaux De Fonds, CH
18.03 – Le Peniche, Douai, FR
19.03 – The Anvil, Bournemouth, UK
20.03 – The Oobleck, Birmingham, UK
21.03 – The Key Club, Leeds, UK
22.03 – The Full Moon , Cardiff, UK
23.03 – Think Tank, Newcastle, UK
24.03 – King Tuts, Glasgow, UK
25.03 – Star & Garter, Manchester, UK
26.03 – The Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton, UK
27.03 – The Arts Centre, Colchester, UK
28.03 – The Underworld, London, UK
30.03 – Effenaar, Eindhoven, NL
31.03 – Bastard Club, Osnabrueck, DE
01.04 – Hafenklang, Hamburg, DE
02.04 – Beta, Copenhagen, DK
03.04 – TBC
04.04 – John Dee, Oslo, NO
05.04 – Truckstop Alaska, Gothenburg, SE
06.04 – TBC
08.04 – Kuudes Linja, Helsinki, FI
09.04 – Progresja, Warsaw, PL
10.04 – Durer Kurt, Budapest, HU
11.04 – Flying Circus Pub, Cluj Napoca, RO
12.04 – Cassiopeia, Berlin, DE
14.04 – Freakout Ckub, Bologna, IT
15.04 – Officina Degli Angeli, Arbizzano, IT
16.04 – Raindogs House, Savona, IT
17.04 – Warm Audio, Lyon, FR
18.04 – Venue TBC, Montpellier, FR
20.04 – Rocksound, Barcelona, ES
21.04 – Caracol, Madrid, ES
22.04 – Dabadaba, San Sebastian, ES
23.04 – Le Korigan, Luynes, FR
24.04 – Le Glazart, Paris, FR
25.04 – Magasin 4, Brussels, BE
26.04 – Asteriks, Leeuwarden, NL
27.04 – MTC, Cologne, DE
28.04 – Feierwerk, Munich, DE
29.04 – B72, Vienna, Austria
30.04 – Le Nouveau Monde, Fribourg, CH

Karma to Burn on Thee Facebooks

Karma to Burn website

Rodeostar Records

Rodeostar Records

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Karma to Burn Confirm North American Tour Dates; Announce Arch Stanton US Release

Posted in Whathaveyou on December 10th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

karma to burn

West Virginian instrumental institution Karma to Burn are kicking off a month of North American touring on Jan. 7 and by astounding coincidence, that same date will mark the official US release of their latest album, Arch Stanton (review here). That record saw issue earlier this year on FABA/Deepdive Records, and it will be the former who reportedly will handle the American pressing, which the trio seem fit to hand deliver from city to city on their cross-country (plus Montreal and Vancouver!) run.

It’s a hell of a slog and while I’m sure places like Albuquerque and Mesa, Arizona, will be vaguely tolerable in January, I don’t think anyone could accuse Karma to Burn of going easy on themselves this time out. The band has spent much of the last several years focusing on Europe, but it seems they’re ready to dive headfirst back into the North American market. Hard not to root for them in the endeavor.

I had thought it was only for those on their mailing list, but it looks like they’ve also made a warts-and-all live recording from an earlier-2014 London gig available for free download as well, as the PR wire informs:

karma to burn tour

KARMA TO BURN: Instrumental Stoner Rock Legends Announce 2015 North American Tour Dates; Arch Stanton To See Stateside Release Next Month

West Virginia instrumental stoner rock legends, KARMA TO BURN, will bring their bong-ripping riffery and glassy-eyed grooves to the stage next month on a mammoth live expedition. Scheduled to launch on January 7th, 2015 in Ohio, the band will crumble thirty-three stages across the US and Canada, coming to a close in their home state on February 13th, 2015. The band will be joined by special guests, Canadian riff rockers, Sierra. In the meantime, turn up and tune out to the sounds of KARMA TO BURN deafening London earlier this year. The show is downloadable for a limited time at THIS LOCATION.

KARMA TO BURN — guitarist Will Mecum, bassist Rob Halkett and drummer Evan Devine — will be touring in support of their Arch Stanton long player. Unleashed in Europe this Summer via Switzerland-based Faba Records, Arch Stanton is the band’s sixth studio album and third since reforming following their seven-year hiatus in 2009. Reminiscent of their now iconic Wild Wonderful Purgatory and Almost Heathen offerings, on Arch Stanton, KARMA TO BURN channels the true spirit of the riff rock ritual with seven monumental new shredders and “23,” a classic number never before heard, re-recorded for the first time ever.

KARM TO BURN:
1/07/2015 Ripper’s Rock House – Akron, OH
10/8/2015 Kung Fu Necktie – Philadelphia, PA
1/09/2015 31st Street Pub – Pittsburgh, PA
1/10/2015 Hard Luck Bar – Toronto, ON
1/11/2015 Casa Del Popolo – Montreal, QC
1/12/2015 Higher Ground – Burlington, VT
1/13/2015 Geno’s Rock Club – Portland, ME
1/14/2015 TT the Bear’s – Cambridge, MA
1/15/2015 The Shaskeen – Manchester, NH
1/16/2015 Saint Vitus – Brooklyn, NY
1/18/2015 Metro Gallery – Baltimore, MD
1/19/2015 Strange Matter – Richmond, VA
1/20/2015 Pour House Music Hall – Raleigh, NC
1/21/2015 The Earl = East Atlanta, GA
1/22/2015 Siberia – New Orleans, LA
1/23/2015 Mangos – Houston, TX
1/24/2015 Mohawk – Austin, TX
1/25/2015 Double Wide – Dallas, TX
1/27/2015 Launchpad – Albuquerque, NM
1/28/2015 The Nile Theater – Mesa, AZ
1/30/2015 Loaded – Hollywood, CA
1/31/2015 Bottom of the Hill – San Francisco, CA
2/01/2015 Starlite Lounge – Sacramento, CA
2/03/2015 El Corazon – Seattle, WA
2/04/2015 Rickshaw Theatre – Vancouver, BC
2/06/2015 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
2/07/2015 The Shredder – Boise, ID
2/08/2015 Area 51 – Salt Lake City, UT
2/09/2015 Lost Lake Lounge – Denver, CO
2/10/2015 Replay Lounge – Lawrence, KS
2/11/2015 Fubar – St Louis, MO
2/12/2015 Red Line Tap – Chicago, IL
2/13/2015 123 Pleasant Street – Morgantown, WV

In conjunction with band’s tour kick off, KARMA TO BURN’s Arch Stanton will see official North American release via Faba Records on January 7th, 2014.

KARMA TO BURN on Facebook
http://www.k2burn.net

Karma to Burn, “57”

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Karma to Burn Announce Month-Long US Tour

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 28th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

…Actually it’s more like five weeks that West Virginia’s Karma to Burn will spend on the road across the US supporting their 2014 full-length, Arch Stanton (review here). The Morgantown instrumentalists, now with guitarist Will Mecum as the sole remaining founding member alongside bassist Rob Halkett and drummer Evan Devine, will head out right after New Year’s, starting Jan. 7 in Ohio and ending with a hometown gig on Feb. 13.

Those lineup changes have taken place and Karma to Burn have released a self-titled EP and a split with Sons of Alpha Centauri since their last round of North American touring in 2011, so it seems reasonable to expect some difference in stage presence given the different players, etc., but Karma to Burn‘s no-frills core might as well be carved in marble it’s so permanent, and they should be nothing if not recognizable.

Looking forward to finding out:

karma to burn tour

Karma to Burn on North American tour!

1/07 AKRON, OH @ RIPPERS ROCK HOUSE
1/08 PHILADELPHIA, PA @ KUNGFU NECKTIE
1/09 PITTSBURGH, PA @ 31ST ST PUB
1/10 TORONTO, ON @ HARD LUCK
1/11 MONTREAL, QC @ CASA DEL POPOLO
1/12 BURLINGTON, VT @ HIGHER GROUND
1/13 PORTLAND, ME @ GENO’S
1/14 BOSTON, MA @ TT THE BEARS
1/15 MANCHESTER, NH @ THE SHASKEEN
1/16 NEW YORK, NY @ SAINT VITUS
1/18 BALTIMORE, MD @ METRO GALLERY
1/19 RICHMOND, VA @ STRANGE MATTER
1/20 RALEIGH, NC @ THE POUR HOUSE
1/21 ATLANTA, GA @ THE EARL
1/22 NEW ORLEANS, LA @ SIBERIA
1/23 HOUSTON, TX @ MANGOS
1/24 AUSTIN, TX @ MOHAWK
1/25 DALLAS, TX @ DOUBLE WIDE
1/27 ALBUQUERQUE, TX @ LAUNCHPAD
1/28 PHOENIX, AZ @ NILE THEATER
1/29 SAN DIEGO, CA @ BRICK BY BRICK
1/30 LOS ANGELES, CA @ LOADED
1/31 SAN FRANCISCO, CA @ BOTTOM OF THE HILL
2/01 SACRAMENTO, CA @ STARLITE LOUNGE
2/03 SEATTLE, WA @ EL CORAZON
2/04 VANCOUVER, BC @ RICKSHAW THEATER
2/06 PORTLAND, OR @ HAWTHORNE THEATER
2/07 BOISE, ID @ SHREDDER
2/08 SALT LAKE CITY, UT @ AREA 51
2/09 DENVER, CO @ LOST LAKE
2/10 LAWRENCE, KS @ REPLAY
2/11 ST. LOUIS, MO @ FUBAR
2/12 CHICAGO IL @ RED LINE TAP
2/13 MORGANTOWN WV @ 123 PLEASANT STREET
04/23 Berlin Germany @ Desert Fest
04/26 London UK @ Desert Fest

https://twitter.com/k2burnofficial
http://www.k2burn.net/
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Karma-To-Burn/118432638215095

Karma to Burn, “55” official video

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Karma to Burn, Arch Stanton: Shoot, Don’t Talk

Posted in Reviews on July 29th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

What’s really surprising about Arch Stanton, the new full-length from Karma to Burn, isn’t how the trio goes about its business. Led by West Virginian guitarist Will Mecum, the method is essentially the same as it’s been since 1999’s sophomore outing, Wild Wonderful Purgatory, in that the band cut a straight line, sans frills, to riff-led heavy rock and roll. Tracks are numerically titled, there are no vocals save for a bit of sampling on closer “Fifty Nine” (also as high as the numbers go this time around), and they stick so firmly to their approach that six of the album’s eight tracks are between four and five minutes long, and neither of the other two top six. For anyone who’s listened to them before, the ideas and the barebones feel with which they’re presented will be familiar. What’s really surprising about Arch Stanton is how much Karma to Burn can say without saying anything at all. Not counting a 2012 reworking of their famously vocalized 1997 self-titled debut (their label at the time, Roadrunner, forced them to take a on a singer; it didn’t last), dubbed Slight Reprise, the FABA and Deepdive Records-released Arch Stanton is Karma to Burn‘s sixth album, the follow-up to 2011’s V (review here) and their 2010 return, Appalachian Incantation (review here), as well as a slew of splits, EPs and singles. It is consistent with those two and with the output from Karma to Burn‘s first run on the aforementioned Wild Wonderful Purgatory and 2002’s Almost Heathen, but it’s also their first long-player to feature bassist Rob Halkett and drummer Evan Devine alongside Mecum.

Although it doesn’t manifest sonically in any massive stylistic shift — Mecum seems to be calling the shots either way — his guitar is certainly the defining presence in the band at this point if it wasn’t before, and it probably was — it’s still a big change. Former bassist Rich Mullins and ex-drummer Rob Oswald, aside from being there during the first run prior to their split after Almost Heathen, were a considerable presence in the band’s creative growth. Mullins having taken part in the band Year Long Disaster particularly led to the two groups essentially combining forces for a time, but that’s gone on Arch Stanton as well. Those days, it would seem, are over, and Karma to Burn have returned to the core of what they’re all about, which is Mecum‘s riffs and a straightforward instrumental heavy rock drive. They dip as far back as “Twenty Three” — which by the numbers comes from the Wild Wonderful Purgatory-era — but the rest of Arch Stanton is between “Fifty Three” and “Fifty Nine,” arranged over the album’s 37 minutes to maximize overarching flow over what I imagine breaks cleanly in half to form two vinyl sides, and “Fifty Seven” leads off with Devine‘s drums and winding feedback leading to a classic motoring boogie, thick, groovy and in heavy motion. As ever, Karma to Burn waste no time in reminding their listeners who they are and what they do, even if they’re introducing some new faces in the process. “Fifty Six” has a metallic feel in the initial guitar line, and “Fifty Three” slows the proceedings down for a time, but they cap the first half with a return to the swagger in “Fifty Four” that shows off some airy layering at first before the central riff emerges to mark the nod-ready progression, building efficiently before a somewhat understated payoff rounds out.

The grooves get larger on “Fifty Five” and “Fifty Eight” on side B, but the mood and overall vibe keep steady, though the fact that the chugging “Twenty Three” seems to have a simpler spirit than what surrounds could be taken as indicative of the creative growth of the band or at very least Mecum‘s songwriting. Karma to Burn have long been haunted by the specter of vocals, partially because of their debut, partially because, in collaborations with John Garcia and Dan Davies, they’ve flirted with the idea, and partially because the songs are so straightforward it seems there’s room for a singer. I don’t know if that feels less true on Arch Stanton because something has changed in Karma to Burn musically or if it’s interpretation based on how otherwise uncompromising the album feels, but it remains the case either way. True to the album’s title which also references the film, some snipped dialog from the closing moments of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly — famous Morricone score included — is worked into “Fifty Nine,” and that seems particularly fitting, though somewhat ironic since that was a European film set in the American west and Karma to Burn are an American band who at this point have found greater success touring in Europe. Nonetheless, they end with a big push, and bring Arch Stanton to a finish sounding refreshed in their purpose and clearheaded about what it is Karma to Burn should be some 20 years on from the band’s founding. Whether or not Mecum‘s bringing in Halkett and Devine will signal a new period of productivity — two live albums, an EP and a split with Sons of Alpha Centauri all being released since the start of 2013 would hint that perhaps it will — it’s hard to say for sure, but if Arch Stanton proves anything, it’s that like their goat mascot on the Alexander von Wieding cover art, they ride tall and destructive through whatever battle may be raging around them.

Karma to Burn, “53” official video

Karma to Burn on Thee Facebooks

Deepdive Records

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Video Premiere: Karma to Burn, “53”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 5th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

When you need an ass kicked and you need it kicked in a hurry, call Karma to Burn. Led by guitarist Will Mecum, the West Virginian outfit has been stomping mudholes with their particular brand of straightforward heavy rock and roll for 20 years now, and as “53” from their new H42 Records split 7″ with UK rockers Sons of Alpha Centauri shows, there’s no slowing down in their point-A-to-point-B, no frills, no bullshit approach. The instrumentalists have seen no shortage of changes along their way — Mecum is now joined in the band by bassist Rob Halkett and drummer Evan Devine, and Karma to Burn have had bassists, drummers, and even vocalists come and go — but their core ethic remains steady and there’s no getting around the fact that it continues to work.

The video features art by Alexander von Wieding and old war footage, but of course the draw is the song itself. “53” is a solid refresher of just what it is that has always made Karma to Burn such a righteous outlier. They never quite seem satisfied, never want to rest, and at what I’m sure is a coincidental four minutes and 20 seconds long, the song “53” hits with an underlying intensity of purpose that’s like listening to grinding teeth. Whatever they do, it’s their unwillingness to compromise their sound and the central riff-led take that has earned them such respect over the last two decades, but no matter how many bands they influence or what acclaim comes their way or passes them by, Karma to Burn keep their heads down, keep working. It’s easy to admire that.

Enjoy “53” below, followed by some more info on the Sons of Alpha Centauri split vinyl courtesy of H42 Records:

Karma to Burn, “53” official video

Karma to Burn’s ’53’

’53’ is also part of the new Split 7″ of Sons of Alpha Centauri & Karma to Burn! This is the second 7″ featuring both bands and follows up the immense popularity of the first vinyl and captures the raw energy and driving rock fury of both bands yet again. This release will only be available on vinyl through H42 Records Artwork & Layout: Alexander von Wieding.

First Edition: 500
– 130 on orange-black vinyl
– 130 on white-blue vinyl
– 240 on black vinyl

Karma to Burn’s website

Sons of Alpha Centauri on Thee Facebooks

H42 Records webstore

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On the Radar: Hovel

Posted in On the Radar on November 22nd, 2010 by JJ Koczan

Boy oh boy, Morgantown, West Virginia, must really have something against vocalists. First Karma to Burn has to basically be ordered to get one for their first record, only to swear them off forever afterwards (only to eventually merge with Year Long Disaster and employ one more regularly), then Treasure Cat comes along wanting no part of any singer’s ego, and now the bruising trio Hovel likewise can’t be bothered. Don’t get me wrong, I know first-hand what a pain in the ass singers can be, but there’s got to be at least one in West Virginia that the rest of a band would be willing to put up with. West by God has one. Maybe they’ll share.

It’s easy to get into the grooves Hovel proffers, what with the familiarly American doom riffs and quality bass fills of a song like “Taking off the Guv’nor,” or the decidedly Iommi-esque bent of “26 Inch Sonic Witch” — both audible at the band’s MySpace. The second of those tracks comes off Hovel‘s Fuzzbuster/26 Inch Sonic Witch 7″ (you can also hear the first on there), released by Seattle‘s Flotation Records in a limited edition of 500. Hovel also has a six-song self-titled EP they’re selling on the MySpace that one presumes the cuts “GammaMinusMachineMinder” and “Taking off the Guv’nor” come from.

For being from an area rich in this kind of rock — could Morgantown be the official home of instrumental stoner riffing? — Hovel fit right in with a second generation of quality guitar-led jammers like Admiral Browning and Nitroseed in losing nothing of the doomed experience for lacking in throat. Ah hell. Whoever was singing would probably just blather on about cars and chicks anyway. Might as well let the crowd enjoy the riffs unencumbered. Take a listen to “Taking off the Guv’nor” and see if you don’t agree:

Taking off the Guv’nor

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