Kitsa Stream Dead by Dawn in Full; Album Out Saturday

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on February 21st, 2024 by JJ Koczan

kitsa dead by dawn

Port Orchard, Washington, heavy rockers Kitsa release their debut album, Dead by Dawn, this weekend in collaboration with Music Abuse Records and at a release show joined by Mos Generator and Chameleons. The event page is linked below, should you be in the area, and the eight-track release, which will be on CD and vinyl in addition to the download, is a cause worth supporting, with a direct take on ’90s-style grunge and alt rock put through a filter of modern and heavier tonality. In its melodies, its flashes of Southern-via-Pacific-Northwest semi-twang, with the title-track representing well what the band calls a Nazareth influence (fair enough, not arguing) and feels like the path there came via Jar of Flies era Alice in Chains or how Jerry Cantrell always leaned a little country.

On Dead by Dawn, it’s part of the pastiche, not the whole sound, and if you’re listening to opener “Seeds of Famine,” you might wonder where the hell I’m getting this from. But elements there of crunch in the guitar of Chris Pound (Deepwater) and the groove built around his chugging riff by bassist Jeremy Deede (Teepee Creeper) and drummer Randy Fort (Abused) give vocalist Skot Davis a righteous backdrop for the hookcraft in “Seeds of Famine,” which even before the sun turns sepia on subsequent the title-track gives hints of open spaces in the shift into its chorus. The character of that emerges across the album works across two sides — four cuts per — and saves the outright heaviest moments for cuts deeper into the procession like “Hate” and the penultimate “Journeyman,” which roll out thick and lumbering ahead of the faster, not-a-Misfits-cover finale “She.”

And in “She,” as well as its side-A-capper counterpart “Wasteland,” Kitsa proffer melodies reminiscent of C.O.C.‘s Blind while setting forth on their own take, particularly in the layered guitar work of “She” and the churning movement of a midsection that straightens out to make the record’s last shove before the guitar solo brings the end. The ultra-catchy “Downhill” — which reminds listeners where the shit goes and which is one of those songs Kitsa just might have to play at every show for as long as they’re a band — blends brood and a midtempo groove-rock nod en route back to its next chorus. These familiar aspects are hints more than direct sonic references — at least so far as I can tell — and bolstered though the vocals of Davis, whose low-in-mouth burl on “Dead by Dawn” touches on Chris Cornell in “Dead by Dawn,” taking a route to get there that will be recognizable to fans of Sasquatch, while subverting whoa-momma-hey-yeah-baby frontman caricature in his balance of dudeliness and range.

That same flexibility also adds to the impact on side B, as they pick up from the lighter strum of “Koi” into that brief instrumental’s bluesier stomp before “Hate” announces its arrival with immediate largesse in its riff. The heft subsides in the verse but is never far off, and “Journeyman” — which along with “Downhill” and “Wasteland” was one of three initial live demos re-recorded for the LP — awaits with reinforcement with a fervency of snap to its drums and a tension in its early going that makes most of the second half of the song feel like a payoff. It ends with Davis declaring himself the titular character and gives over to “She,” which is the longest inclusion at 5:31 and in summarizing much of what Kitsa have put forth as their sound on their first proper release, it leaves off with a sustained hum of distortion after one last showcase of dynamic pace and knows-where-it’s-coming-from songwriting.

If you read the first sentence above, there were two hints dropped even before Mos Generator were directly mentioned as regards an association with that band’s founding guitarist/vocalist, Tony Reed (also Big Scenic Nowhere and sundry concurrent projects), in “Port Orchard” and the association with Music Abuse RecordsReed produced Dead by Dawn, and the pro-shop sounds captured are balanced in the mix so that a detail like the headstock strum early in “Hate” can shine through even some of the otherwise most consuming moments. Suited to the ’90s vibe, the recording brings atmosphere and impact alike, and is only one more factor in helping distinguish Kitsa on their debut.

You can stream Dead by Dawn in its entirety on the player below, followed by more info from the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

KITSA is a rousing heavy rock act hailing from the salted aura of Port Orchard, Washington. Launched in 2022, the band’s music is deeply rooted in weighty riffs, spanning various genres over several decades, with a deep nod to Pacific Northwest grunge.

With Elder, The Sword, Down, Alice In Chains, and Nazareth cited as some of their influences, the foursome of KITSA comprises members from eclectic bands, including Devilbilt, YEDD, Teepee Creeper, Pivot Point, Earthwreck, and Abused. In April 2023, KITSA released three incendiary live demo tracks recorded by Jeremy Deede and Tony Reed at Devils Child Records.

Later in 2023, the band set out to record their full-length debut, ‘Dead by Dawn.’ A melting pot of musical forces, the record features an assortment of sweet, sweeping vocal harmonies on the title track “Dead by Dawn,” the live fan favorite “Journeyman,” and a classic rock banger “Seeds of Famine.” Dead by Dawn is transcended by hard-hitting muscled tracks like “She” and “Hate.”

Dead by Dawn – Tracklist:
01. Seeds Of Famine
02. Dead By Dawn
03. Downhill
04. Wasteland
05. Koi
06. Hate
07. Journeyman
08. She

Dead By Dawn was produced by the venerable Tony Reed, with all songs written by KITSA. The album was recorded, mixed, and mastered by Reed at APL and HeavyHead Recording Co. in October and November of 2023. The album’s intimidating artwork was created by the gifted Jerry Padilla and Rob Lorenz.

Upcoming Live Dates:
Feb. 24 – Bremerton, WA @ The Charleston – Record Release Show (w/ Mos Generator, Chameleons)
Apr. 06 – Bremerton, WA @ Redwood Theater (w/ Pike vs The Automaton, Wizzerd)

Release show event page:

Kitsa are:
Skot Davis: Lead Vocals
Chris Pound: Guitar, Vocals
Randy Fort: Drums
Jeremy Deede: Bass

Kitsa on Facebook

Kitsa on Instagram

Kitsa on Bandcamp

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Mos Generator to Release Heavy Sevens & Spaced Oddities Compilation; Time//Wounds Reissue Coming Soon

Posted in Whathaveyou on July 6th, 2023 by JJ Koczan

Mos Generator releasing a thing can be news even if it’s not really a huge surprise. Led by the e’er prolific Tony Reed — also of Big Scenic Nowhere, Hot Spring Water, Constance Tomb, ex-Stone Axe, on and on — the Port Orchard, Washington, heavy rockers have posted 2022 remasters on their Bandcamp for  2018’s Shadowlands (review here), 2016’s Abyssinia (review here) and 2014’s Electric Mountain Majesty (review here), representing the most productive stretch in terms of full-length records in the band’s career, though along with studio LPs there’s always EPs, singles, and other odds and ends the band have going.

To wit, Heavy Sevens and Spaced Oddities is a compilation of off-album tracks from various releases over a 20-year span. That and a reissue of their latest album, 2022’s Time//Wounds, will be out through Glory or Death Records, deepening an association that’s been in place for several years, as Mos Generator has taken part in tribute releases for the label before — why I don’t write about those whole-album or best-of-whoever tributes more: it just got to be too much, there’s like a zillion of them, and as cool and novel as those are, with the hours in the day that I have, it seems more suitable to me to write about actually-new music — and Reed‘s Hot Spring Water project put out their 2022 album, In Session, via Glory or Death as well.

Release dates? I don’t know. They put up test pressings over the weekend, signed and so on, so I’d imagine there will be more word soon. In any case, one to keep an eye out for:

mos generator glory or death

Greetings all, just letting you know that we have a few things coming out at the end of summer through Glory or Death Records.

First is ‘HEAVY SEVENS & SPACED ODDITIES’. This is a single LP collection of the original songs from our 7″ singles and also a few audio oddities from 2001-2021. Second is the Glory or Death version of our last album ‘Time//Wounds’. This version has different art layout and mastering and will be available in some different variants. Unlike the Music Abuse version which was only available in black vinyl. We will have some standard editions available on our bandcamp but if you would like to pre-order or find all the limited versions please go to:

Signed test pressing go live Sunday July 2nd @ 12pm CST

Here is the tracklisting for the Heavy Sevens album. Music Abuse will be releasing it on Cd with extra tracks.

– Gus’s Boogie
– You Bring the Wine, I’ll Bring the Weather
– Step up (7″ Version)
– Godhand Iommi
– Downer Rock ’89
– Wicked Willow (rsd 7″ Version)
– Wroomb
– Tracks (tall Bodies)*
– Serpent’s Glance
– There’s No Return from Nowhere (video Version)
– Gamma/hydra (7″ Version)
– Nowarning (flexi Mix)

Mos Generator:
Tony Reed: guitar/vocals/mellotron
Jono Garrett: drums
Sean Booth: bass

Mos Generator, Time//Wounds (2022)

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Mos Generator: New Pressing of Time//Wounds Available

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 15th, 2023 by JJ Koczan

Released in the waning hours of 2022, Time//Wounds (review here) feels like an especially bold album for Mos Generator in terms of style. Yeah, the Port Orchard heavy rockers led by prolific madman guitarist/vocalist/producer Tony Reed have long since delved into progressive sounds, but never with such a surety of purpose as they do on their latest work. It’s not about “going prog” or something like that, like it’s 1974 and all of a sudden a what had been blues band sounds like Yes or some such, but about incorporating a new range of scope to Mos Generator‘s well established penchant for songcraft and melody. Not the kind of record a band would make out of the gate, rather, it is the beneficiary of the years and decades of experience of Reed in and out of the band as well as the chemistry he shares with bassist Sean Booth and drummer Jono Garrett.

They’ve settled down touring for the last several years, even since such a thing became possible again, and fair enough for how hard they went from around 2014-2018, but as they take more chances on this record, it’s satisfying in a way to see them meet with success on the listener end. That would seem to be what’s underlying this announcement of a second pressing of Time//Wounds since, inevitably, the reason they’re making more records is because they sold through the first pressing and think people will continue to buy. No doubt that’s the case, and bonus for fixing typos in the lyric sheet. As someone who regularly corrects spelling and grammatical errors from, say, a decade ago, on this site, I find it easy to appreciate that kind of thing, frustrating as it is that there’s no shortage of them wanting correction.

In any case, good for Mos Gen, and though it’s only been about three months since the record came out, you know Reed will have something new on tap for this year as well, whatever form that might take.

Here’s the band’s update:

Mos Generator Time Wounds

Hello friends. For those of you who didn’t get a copy of Time//Wounds on vinyl before it sold out or you just like to collect different versions of the same record…the second pressing of Time//Wounds arrived at my door yesterday and I’ve put it up in the store. 200 copies on black vinyl.

It has the same audio as the 1st pressing but there are many changes to the artwork layout of the second edition (including the fixing of MANY typos on the lyric sheet). We’ve been getting some amazing feedback on this album and we truly appreciate the support of people buying it and letting us (and the social media public) know how they feel about it.

Mos Generator:
Tony Reed: guitar/vocals/mellotron
Jono Garrett: drums
Sean Booth: bass

Mos Generator, Time//Wounds (2022)

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Album Review: Mos Generator, Time//Wounds

Posted in Reviews on December 2nd, 2022 by JJ Koczan

Mos Generator Time Wounds

Time//Wounds is the fifth album since Port Orchard, Washington’s Mos Generator returned from the ether of hiatus with 2012’s Nomads (review here). The second era of the band is now longer than the first, as and as six tracks of Time//Wounds — issued through Music Abuse and Pale Wizard Records following a trilogy on Listenable Records in 2014’s Electric Mountain Majesty (review here), 2016’s Abyssinia (review here) and 2018’s Shadowlands (review here) — time matters.

Accompanying this return to activity in terms of full studio LPs has been a glutton’s delight of short releases, splits, self-bootlegs, unearthed demos, one offs, a solo album from founding guitarist/vocalist/keyboardist/producer Tony Reed, as well as several other Reed-inclusive side-projects, including Big Scenic NowhereConstance TombHot Spring Water, in-depth work with Australia’s Seedy Jeezus as producer and player, and more besides. As stretches of time go, it’s been a good one to be a Mos Generator fan.

Since Electric Mountain Majesty and particularly across recent EPs like 2019’s Spontaneous Combustions (review here), 2016’s The Firmament, and even the demos that showed up on their 2020 split with Di’Aul (review here), the band have moved in multifaceted fashion toward a more progressive approach from their foundation in more straightforward classic heavy rock. True, they’ve never lacked ambition, and they’ve done strongly thematic work before such as the concept album The Late Great Planet Earth in 2005, but particularly as Reed has grown more comfortable with various synth instrumentation and worked to flesh out his own vocal arrangements, the direction the band — completed by Sean Booth on bass and Jono Garrett, whose contributions aren’t to be minimized in how these recordings sound; I don’t know their dynamic in the studio, but it’s safe to say nothing is ending up on a Mos Generator record that Reed didn’t approve even if for diplomacy — but 20 years on from their self-titled debut (reissue review here), Time//Wounds seems to complete a turn toward a vision of performance-rooted progressive heavy rock that is both classic in substance and very much Mos Generator‘s and Reed‘s own.

Influenced by a deeper knowledge of original-era heavy and prog than one could ever aspire to amass, as well as his own roots as a player in more punkish fare — looking at you, “Getting Good at Revenge,” which reminds of bit of Mos Generator doing Fu Manchu at their own most punk — and indeed the work Reed has done as a songwriter to bring the band to this point, the 43 minutes of Time//Wounds carry something of an exploratory feel for the finished versions being created using what were the demo tracks for the songs.

This process has been a more than a year long front to back, and accompanying the rawer underpinnings is, instrumentally and vocally, the most complex material Mos Generator have released. To wit, the Opethian bridge(s) of partially-acoustic second cut “(Don’t) Wait Until Tomorrow” or the 14-minute finale “Until We Meet Again (Parts I-IV),” which indeed plays out structurally in movements flowing one into the next. That these moves take place alongside the prog-funky keyboard in “Burn Away the Years,” which is almost garage rock in its strum, is emblematic of the stylistic sprawl brought to bear under the heading of Time//WoundsKing CrimsonMotorpsychoMC5Beatles and who else? It doesn’t even matter since it all comes out as Mos Generator anyhow.

mos generator

That, as it happens, is a major unifying factor throughout the songs. Another is an abiding sense of melancholy — certainly present in the cover photo by singer-songwriter Conny Ochs as well — that’s present from the less-than-thrilled-sounding opening verse of “Aja-Minor” (premiered here), “…Don’t lose your time/You ain’t got none…,” onward. Immediately, the engagement with time is at the forefront, and by the time the hook comes around with layers of Reed almost taunting himself, “Time wounds/What you got what you got in your head/N-n-nothing,” the inevitable connection between temporality and mortality is writ large without being said at all. If this is Mos Generator confronting death, they do so in almost manic but inherently still plotted fashion.

Time is almost everywhere throughout — “(Don’t) Wait Until Tomorrow,” “Burn Away the Years,” the also-linear-structured just-under-eight-minute penultimate track “Only Yesterday,” which likely starts the side B stretch-out that continues in “Until We Meet Again (Parts I-IV)” and feels born of a similar process. Shadowlands was likewise not without its darker streak, and I suppose one might say the same of the preceding records in this era of the band too, to some degree or other, but the contrast born with Time//Wounds is striking. Some of these melodies, tones and grooves are bright and near-soaring, and they carry with them an existential weight that goes even beyond the more intense shove of “Getting Good at Revenge.”

It’s not necessarily a pall this casts over Time//Wounds, but it’s a shadow in the tapestry. And as Mos Generator adventure into new ideas in terms of their sound as a unit and in Reed‘s songwriting, the seemingly lighthearted strum of “Burn Away the Years” — “Never give in and never look back at the smoke” — and the churning layers of synthesizer and guitar that ensue want nothing for clarity of purpose. It is Mos Generator growing older, weirder, but maintaining the surefootedness of craft that has always been a an essential component of the band’s work. Time wounds and time heals in “Aja-Minor,” and the lyrics of “Burn Away the Years” seem reluctantly reconciled to being “another birthday song,” but even if the album holds a scope that can feel disjointed at first glance, there’s always a course charted beneath the surface, and on the most fundamental level, the songs are too thoughtful and intricately made to be anything other than progressive rock.

I expect some listeners won’t know what to make of it — even longtime followers might be surprised — but those who find themselves able to invest properly in the mission and the message here, a record that seems to describe the urgency of its own making even before the first track is done while also stretching out in ways the band never has before, will find it nothing but a triumph. That won’t be everybody, but it will definitely be some, and with what ReedBooth and Garrett conjure in these tracks, I feel like Mos Generator have never been less predictable for what might come next. Especially given their history, let alone the fleeting nature of all things, that in itself seems worthy of appreciating. This is the output of a master of the form refusing to not challenge himself. In other words, the way art moves forward.

Mos Generator, “Aja-Minor”

Mos Generator on Facebook

Mos Generator on Instagram

Mos Generator on Bandcamp

HeavyHead webstore

Pale Wizard Records on Instagram

Pale Wizard Records on Facebook

Pale Wizard Records store

Pale Wizard Records on Bandcamp

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Mos Generator Premiere “Aja-Minor”; Announce Time//Wounds Due Dec. 16

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on October 27th, 2022 by JJ Koczan

mos generator

Mos Generator will release their awaited full-length, Time//Wounds, on Dec. 16 through Music Abuse Records and Pale Wizard Records. And as I tell you it’s been four years since the Tony Reed-led, Port Orchard, Washington-based heavy rock trio released their last album, 2018’s Shadowlands (review here), understand that the count of years comes with the caveat of a steady stream of EPs, remasters, compilation appearances, live recordings, side-projects from Reed and sundry other one-offs. I’ve said on multiple occasions that Tony Reed — joined on Time//Wounds by bassist Sean Booth and drummer Jono Garrett after briefly reuniting the original lineup of the band this year for a couple live shows; wonder if they were recorded — has a work ethic that I consider deeply inspiring on a personal level in that he wakes up each morning and hits it. These are the levels of productivity to which one aspires.

Time//Wounds states its central themes plainly, and “Aja-Minor” (premiering below) arrives as the opening track and the leadoff for a deeply progressive and intricately arranged collection of progressive but classically structured heavy rock. Songs like the Mos Generator Time Woundsacoustic-led “(Don’t) Wait Until Tomorrow” and the subsequent melodic roller “Burn Away the Years” lay out the premise in lines like, “Until it’s over, never look behind,” etc., amid intricate fuzz and fluidly arranged keyboard/Mellotron. I’d be surprised if “Getting Good on Revenge” isn’t released as a single after “Aja-Minor” since it’s a rocker and the component barn-burner, setting up the more extended reach of “Only Yesterday” and the 14-minute “Until We Meet Again,” parts of which, if they came from Belgium, would probably be hailed as groundbreaking post-black metal but are nonetheless a grand unfolding that is distinctly the band’s own in that it is executed with a surprising lack of pretense for something that’s both so long and so grandiose in style.

This is basically an album announcement — SO HEY, there’s an album coming! Here’s a song off it! I sincerely hope you enjoy and look forward to having Time//Wounds as a late highlight for 2022, because that’s exactly what it’s gonna be.

Some comment from Reed follows the song below:

Mos Generator, “Aja-Minor” track premiere

Tony Reed on “Aja-Minor”:

Like many of the songs on the Time//Wounds album, Aja-Minor is about time and the decisions that are made as the years pass by. I feel like the lyrics are a message to the young telling them not to waste a moment in this life. Musically, the track goes through many changes and it’s hard for me to pinpoint direct influences, but I think the initial spark for the song comes from the fact that I am using a tuning that Joni Mitchell uses on her Hejira album. Using that tuning allowed for chord voicings I wouldn’t normally use and helped to create a piece of music I’m very satisfied with. I think it’s a condensed representation of the rest of the album. Progressive rock with pop elements.

From the album “Time//Wounds”. Coming December 16th on Music Abuse Records (vinyl) & Pale Wizard Records (cd)

Mos Generator:
Tony Reed: guitar/vocals/mellotron
Jono Garrett: drums
Sean Booth: bass

Mos Generator on Facebook

Mos Generator on Instagram

Mos Generator on Bandcamp

HeavyHead webstore

Pale Wizard Records on Instagram

Pale Wizard Records on Facebook

Pale Wizard Records store

Pale Wizard Records on Bandcamp

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Friday Full-Length: Stone Axe, I

Posted in Bootleg Theater on July 20th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Those who cite retro heavy rock as a European-only phenomenon have obviously never dug into Stone Axe‘s 2009 debut, Stone Axe I. The album, with its striking, vinyl-ready cover art and 10-track/38-minute run, was created with the express mission of paying homage to heavy ’70s rock and roll. And that’s precisely what it did, capturing the warmth of production and a live-in-the-studio feel that remains one of the best American executions of the style regardless of the band’s seemingly permanent dissolution. With the hooks of songs like “Black Widow,” opener “Riders of the Night,” “The Skylah Rae” and “There’d Be Days,” Stone Axe proffered memorable craft the whole time through, keeping a mellow groove beneath even its most active moments despite changes in instrumentation and mood. Live, the band included the rhythm section of bassist Mike DuPont and drummer Mykey Haslip, but in the studio it was just vocalist Dru Brinkerhoff and guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Tony Reed.

If the latter name is familiar, it should be. Reed partnered with Brinkerhoff and launched Stone Axe after putting his prior outfit, Mos Generator, to rest in indefinite-hiatus style following 2007’s Songs for Future Gods, which, like Stone Axe I, was released through Roadburn Records. Mos Generator‘s own classic heavy rock influence was one thing, but Stone Axe brought it to another level entirely. Listening to the Led Zeppelin-style blast of “Sky is Falling” and the telltale Thin Lizzy bounce of the subsequent “There’d Be Days” — as well as that in closer “Taking Me Home” — Stone Axe did nothing to mask the direct lines they drew to titans of ’70s heavy, in the Mellotron finish of “My Darkest Days” and the infuriatingly catchy blues rocker “Black Widow,” the band evoked a sense of melancholy beneath a harder-driving atmosphere, but the album never lost its sense of class either in theme or delivery. “The Skylah Rae” told a tale of humans leaving Earth on a giant ship that shared its name with the title, and side B brought about some considerable turns in momentum, whether it was the boogie of “Rhinoceros” or the swagger of “Diamonds and Fools.” Penultimate groover “Return of the Worm” brought a perfectly-paced rhythmic nod to bear and topped it with Brinkerhoff‘s boozy vocals, which were no less classic than any other element put to use, be it instrument or production. The dude absolutely killed on vocals. Just nailed it.

And in many ways, it’s the Brinkerhoff/Reed partnership that’s essential to understand when it comes to Stone Axe. stone axe iConsider that, at that point, Reed was coming off playing guitar and handling vocals in Mos Generator, and that he was also prone to not only recording the band’s albums but releasing them as well. I don’t know who penned the lyrics for Stone Axe, but even if he did, for Reed to step out of the frontman position and relinquish that to anyone else must have been a significant sacrifice for a band that was still ostensibly his as he was writing the songs and playing guitar, bass, drums and whatever else. Stone Axe was a significant turn away from Mos Generator precisely because Reed brought Brinkerhoff on board as the vocalist in order to better capture that classic rock feel, which, again Brinkerhoff‘s voice seemed to be made to bring to life.

And speaking of life, how about those live-recorded tracks on Stone Axe I, huh? Well, no. It would’ve been impossible with just Reed handling all the instruments. Natural sounding cuts like “My Darkest Days” and “Diamonds and Fools,” that easy groove in “Black Widow” and “The Skylah Rae” would’ve had to have been tracked one instrument at a time — probably the drums first, then bass, guitar and whatever keys after. Then Brinkerhoff would be able to sing over the final tracks. Yet Stone Axe I in no way sounds pieced together in this way. It sounds like players in a room hashing it out. Stone Axe I did a better job capturing a live feel than a lot of albums that are recorded live, and it’s a credit to Reed as a producer that that was the case. The material lends itself to an organic vibe, to be sure, but it would’ve been easy for the songs to come out staid and lifeless, and they’re anything but.

Like its 2010 follow-up, Stone Axe II (review here), Stone Axe I was reissued via Ripple Music after Reed signed with the label in 2010. I got to write the liner notes for the second record. A slew of releases were hinted at in that announcement, including a third full-length — which at one point they even started writing — but the band’s last studio outing would be a split with Germany’s Wight on Fat & Holy Records in 2012, the same year Ripple put out both Stone Axe‘s Captured Live! Roadburn Festival 2011 and Mos Generator‘s return long-player, Nomads (review here), the success of which effectively relaunched that band, which would go on to revamp its lineup and become the full-time touring act they remain until now. In the meantime, Reed channeled his love of classic heavy into a solo covers release called The Lost Chronicles of Heavy Rock, Vol. 1 in 2015, which he’s newly pressed onto CD ahead of a quick run of Midwestern Mos Generator shows next month that will take them to the Stoned Meadow of Doom festival.

Though a third Stone Axe album would never manifest, it’s somehow all the more fitting that, like so much of the ’70s heavy rock movement that inspired them it would be somewhat cut short only to have the two albums go on to become cult classics as they have and no doubt will continue to do. Would I ever say never on a Stone Axe resurgence? Never. But with Mos Generator topping tour bills and playing gigs like the Main Stage at Hellfest in France, one could hardly argue Reed‘s time continues to be anything other than well spent. Stone Axe was what it was, and I’m glad there are the records to document that, because it’s worth preserving.

As always, I hope you enjoy.

Goodness gracious. Was it enough week for you? It was definitely enough for me. I feel like my head’s still spinning from the Quarterly Review. I have a ritual I undertake every time I finish one of those where I clear the folders off my desktop — they go in my Albums folder — and delete the header because I’m not going to use it again, and I don’t even think I have the energy to do it. Maybe tomorrow, though probably not.

My plan for tonight is to go see Sasquatch at the Saint Vitus Bar in Brooklyn. I’m hemming and hawing and of course everything depends on the baby, so we’ll see. If I leave at seven I’ll get to Brooklyn by 9, blah blah blah. I’m keeping my fingers crossed I can get my ass out of the house. Tomorrow morning it’s a drive north to Connecticut and then seeing Backwoods Payback in New London. Then Sunday it’s back to New York for Bible of the Devil. As of right now I want to hit all three shows. Next weekend I want to do the same thing. Three shows, three nights in a row, and then that’s probably my quota for the rest of the year, surprise YOB gigs if there are any and Psycho Las Vegas notwithstanding.

Depending on what I actually get to — this is an ambitious plan, I recognize — is the schedule for next week, but here’s the notes as they stand now:

Mon.: Sasquatch live review/Arcadian Child premiere.
Tue.: Backwoods Payback live review; CB3 video premiere.
Wed.: Bible of the Devil live review; Lurk track premiere.
Thu.: Sergio Ch. video premiere.
Fri. Forming the Void premiere/review.

That’s a lot of live reviews for one week. Feels like even more coming off a Quarterly Review. But again, I’m going to try. If it doesn’t pan out, there are always plenty of albums to be written up.

Thanks for reading this week if you did, and either way, please have a great and safe weekend. Maybe I’ll see you at a show. I hope so.

All the best. Forum and Radio.

The Obelisk Forum

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On Wax: Teepee Creeper / Mos Generator Split 7″

Posted in On Wax on June 6th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

I had some pretty high expectations for Teepee Creeper coming into their split 7″ single with Mos Generator in no small part because the latter band’s most recent split with a Washington-based heavy rock band found them aligned to Ancient Warlocks, whose subsequent self-titled debut offered thrills aplenty. It’s intriguing to think Mos Gen guitarist/vocalist Tony Reed — who also recorded Teepee Creeper‘s included track, “Galactic Oblivion” — might be endorsing newcomer acts in such a subtle way, and Teepee Creeper justify the backing with a steady rolling groove on “Galactic Oblivion,” open-sounding and large but not over the top, somewhere between Wo Fat and Goatsnake‘s deceptively catchy stonerisms.

The blend will ring familiar to heavy riff heads, and Reed‘s production preserves a natural vibe that suits the three-piece well, guitarist/vocalist Jon Unruh‘s double-tracked voice switching from a gutty verse delivery to a cleaner chorus and back fluidly over Jeremy Deede‘s bass and Will Armacost‘s drums. A “sky god” is liberally invoked throughout the five-minute push, but there’s a sense of build within the song as well and if you told me two years from now that this split was Teepee Creeper‘s launch point for a solid string of output, I’d believe it. Between Unruh, Deede and Armacost, Teepee Creeper is nobody’s first band, and accordingly, they sound like they know what they want to do and are setting about making that happen.

A couple interesting cuts from Mos Generator on side B. As the included liner explains, the Nirvana cover “I Hate Myself and I Want to Die” — which was originally streamed here in 2012 — was recorded in 2008 for a tribute compilation that never surfaced, and “Downer Rock ’89” was a song originally called “Daisy Buckle” that came together in 1989 working heavily under the influence of what was then Seattle’s nascent grunge movement. Reed, bassist Scooter Haslip and drummer Shawn Johnson rerecorded it in 2013, so they’re not bringing out old demos — presumably that’s saved for the recently-undertaken Heavy Home Grown release series — but it’s easy to hear the stylistic hallmarks of that era, however much of Mos Generator‘s modern persona factors in alongside.

As an introduction to Teepee Creeper and a fan piece for Mos Generator, the split — out through Music Abuse Records — gets a surprising amount done in its just-over-10-minute runtime. Art on the sleeve by Sean Schock for the A-side, a few vintage Mos Generator pics on back and the aforementioned liner round out the package, and while it’s a quick release, it’s also one you might wind up flipping back and forth a few times in a row to get a feel for how the two bands work together. Not to spoil it, but they work pretty well.

Teepee Creeper, “Galactic Oblivion”

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Teepee Creeper on Thee Facebooks

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