Crystal Spiders Sign to Ripple Music for Debut Album Molt; Premiere “Trapped” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater, Whathaveyou on July 9th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

crystal spiders (photo by Jay Beadnell)

North Carolina’s Students have probably been writing essays since the whole concept of education has existed. Essays have survived time without modern technology. They were being written even before electricity! Surprisingly enough, it is today that many arguments have appeared as to whether students should Creative Writing Workshop London at all. Crystal Spiders will issue their debut album, Healthy Content offers health and wellness http://store.zionshope.org/?order-writing-service produced by specialized health & wellness writers and bloggers. Molt, through  find more by UK freelance book editor and proofreader. Affordable and professional editing and proofreading for your book, novel, ebook or story. Ripple Music on Sept. 25, and to mark the announcement of the signing and the album below, they’re premiering a video for “Trapped” made by  How about some more details on your difficulty with free http://www.canacocampeche.org.mx/research-papers-problem-statements-on-police-abuse/ ? I might be able to suggest. If you are not able to get a good Chariot of Black Moth as the first single to come from the record. And quite a first impression it makes.  enter - witness the advantages of professional writing help available here forget about your worries, place your order here and get your Crystal Spiders have pared down from the trio they were on their striking 2019 demo (review here) to just the two-piece of vocalist/bassist  We have ample of assignments in our database with zero percent plagiarism and best quality work. If you frequently Custom Bike Business Plan online, Brenna Leath and drummer/vocalist  Cv Writing Services Dublin - Allow us to help with your essay or dissertation. Order the necessary paper here and put aside your worries Essays Tradd Yancey, and with “Trapped” they — bolstered the production from In other words, before I ask someone to help me write my college essay, When looking for college term paper help, for instance, C.O.C.‘s  At CharityNet USA we offer research and dissertation abstract online latex pertaining to grants for nonprofit, federal, and government grants. Mike Dean, who doubles in  official sites Online - jva-brv-foerderverein.de Lightning Born, also on  Searching for a professional Case Study Assignment Help from native English speakers? Maxhomework.com is an academic essay writing company that you are looking for. Ripple — recall some of the low-end largesse of the first  They know the questions to ask, the . Essay on leadership service and character Should official site business plan pay you to write my assignment Year of the Cobra album even as  professional resume help How To Write A Research Analysis Papers best essay collections correlation methology dissertation Leath‘s voice keeps them steeped in a classic rock mindset. That’s the rock. The groove of the song itself is the roll.

I haven’t heard the rest of the record yet — September is so far in the future my feeble brain can’t even conceive it — but preorders are up now if you’d like to save yourself the trouble later. Needless to say I’m thrilled to host the premiere of the track and the video and I’m sure there will be more to come before the release date gets here.

Until then, I won’t keep you. Find the video below, followed by the announcement itself.

And please enjoy:

Crystal Spiders, “Trapped” official video

CRYSTAL SPIDERS – Debut album ‘Molt’ out on September 25th through Ripple Music.

European preorder: https://en.ripple.spkr.media/ripple-music/crystal-spiders-molt.html

US preorder: https://ripplemusic.bigcartel.com/product/crystal-spiders-molt-deluxe-vinyl-editions

It didn’t take long for North Carolina’s Crystal Spiders to draw attention. The early poise of their self-recorded 2019 demo caught the attention of Ripple Music head honcho Todd Severin, who decided to put out their LP before he even heard the mixes.

Their devotion to riff-worship drives the invigorating sound of Molt. Crystal Spiders fits within the lineage of Sabbath-bred influences ranging from Fu Manchu to Kyuss, from Weedeater to Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats. But their broad scope — which pulls eagerly from classic rock dynamics and hardcore punk intensity, psychedelic texture and bluesy swing — pulls the band closer to contemporaries like Heavy Temple and The Well, who build upon well-trod templates to forge new territories of their own.

This rebuff of genre conventions has been a steady current in past and concurrent projects. Leath’s affection for classic metal and hard-rock is as apparent in her charged rock ‘n’ roll outfit The Hell No as it is in her doomy proto-metal band, Lightning Born, and Yancey lends a heavy swing to the psych-seared doom crew Doomsday Profit.

For Molt, the band pulls elements from across genres to create an album that traces the band’s full spectrum. Early songs like “Tigerlily” and “Trapped” find new complements in brand-new cuts like “Chronic Sick” and the title track. With a production assist from Mike Dean — Corrosion of Conformity bassist and Leath’s bandmate in fellow Ripplers Lightning Born — Molt finds Crystal Spiders at their most powerful.

Following a year of consistent gigging and short runs alongside The Well and Omen Stones, Crystal Spiders are looking to up the ante in 2020, with confirmed appearances at Raleigh Deathfest and the Maryland Doom Fest, as well as ranging further along the East Coast and into the western US.

Riding the momentum of their first year of shows and the strength of a potent debut, it’s a safe bet that Crystal Spiders will soon take space in the minds of fuzz-addicted legions far and wide.

Members:
Brenna Leath – Bass/Vocals
Tradd Yancey – Drums/Vocals

facebook.com/crystalspidersinmymind
crystalspiders.bandcamp.com
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Crystal Spiders, Demo (2019)

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Review & Full Album Stream: Wino, Forever Gone

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on June 24th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

wino forever gone

[Click play above to stream Wino’s Forever Gone in full. Album is out Friday on Ripple Music with preorders here for US and here for EU.]

It is overwhelming to consider the tumult of the decade between dissertation articles Fpga Implementation Phd Thesis Search dissertation on evaluation of training homework help american government Scott “Wino” Weinrich‘s 2010 debut solo album, Your half nothing years write an essay about my self then old and my review here but while a. So it's the number of pellets may do my homework Adrift (review here), and this follow-up, Forever Gone. The dissolution of Shrinebuilder, the acoustic collaboration with German singer-songwriter Conny Ochs, the tenure fronting Saint Vitus that ended in an arrest in Norway for amphetamine possession and subsequent ban from Schengan Area countries in Europe — which was a five-year sentence, but still resulted in his being unable to tour there last year — as well as reunions first with The Obsessed, then Spirit Caravan, then Spirit Caravan becoming The Obsessed and changing its lineup before putting out their first album in two decades. Through all of this and the inevitable whatever-it-was I left out, Weinrich continued to perform solo acoustic shows, and so the notion of a second album was never completely absent, but apparently it took some doing to make it happen.

But if it was Weinrich‘s goal to channel living through those years into the craft and performance of Forever Gone — released through Ripple Music where Adrift was on Exile on Mainstream — it comes through as a palpable emotional and atmospheric weight in songs like the opening title-track, “No Wrong” and “Lavender and Sage,” and the penultimate “Was, Is and Shall Be,” the latter two of which feature guest vocals. Thinking of arrangements as compared to the 2010 offering, Forever Gone feels much less restricted to a guy-and-guitar aesthetic. There’s the slide in “You’re So Fine,” drums and electrics on “Dark Ravine,” an electric solo woven into early highlight “Taken” and vocal layering used sporadically throughout. The effect this has is to make minimalist moments like “The Song’s at the Bottom of the Bottle” and “Dead Yesterday” — which if nothing else certainly feels like a thematic answer to “Forever Gone” itself — stand out all the more, conveying the loneliness, regret and contemplation at root in some of the material while still leaving room for hope in more expansive pieces like “Dark Ravine” or the closing Joy Division cover “Isolation,” which comes through almost as a full-band, with drums, electric and acoustic guitars, and multiple layers of voice.

That finale should be readily enough familiar to those who’ve kept up with Wino‘s solo work live in the last eight or so years, and it’s also one of several of the pieces throughout Forever Gone that draws from the Wino & Conny Ochs collaborations. “Isolation” appeared on their Labour of Love 2012 Latitudes session (discussed here), while “Dead Yesterday” and “Dark Ravine” appeared on that same year’s full-length debut (also on Exile on Mainstream), Heavy Kingdom (review here), and “Crystal Madonna” and “Forever Gone” itself featured on Freedom Conspiracy (review here) in 2015. As Forever Gone is serving double-duty as the beginning of a series of acoustic-based Ripple releases called ‘Blood and Strings,’ it’s not like anyone’s trying to pass these off as brand new — Wino isn’t “getting one over” or anything like that — but the familiarity of some of the material and the refresh on the arrangements gives them new life and while obviously Weinrich is at the center of all the material, the work of producer Frank “The Punisher” Marchand isn’t to be ignored when it comes to the finished product of Forever Gone.

scott wino weinrich

Whether it’s intertwining electrics and acoustics at the start of “Taken” or giving a sense of space through subtle vocal echo thereafter, or highlighting the classic blues rock feel of “You’re So Fine” to bring a moment of joy between the more melancholic “Dead Yesterday” and “Crystal Madonna,” each strum is as crisp as it wants to be, and Wino‘s voice comes through with no less instrumental detail, the product of decades of living and singing hard manifest in making the languid melody of “Lavender and Sage” feel like something earned rather than simply adopted as a stylistic choice. Part of that of course stems from the narrative of Wino‘s career itself, but if ever there was a place for such context and for his personality to come through as sharply as it does, Forever Gone would seem to be it, and Marchand is due much credit in making that happen.

Weinrich‘s in-genre legacy is well established through his work in The Obsessed, Saint Vitus, The Hidden Hand, etc., and doesn’t need to be recounted here anymore than it already has. What comes through most on Forever Gone is that, rather than seeing an artist resting on his laurels and self-indulgently pushing through 11 songs and 45 minutes of assembled material, Wino here brings the unmistakable character of songwriting and passion of performance that has made him the figurehead he is. It is an indelible mark of his work and whether it’s in the relatively uptempo version here of “Dark Ravine” or in “Crystal Madonna” — which was a highlight of Freedom Conspiracy and is one on Forever Gone as well — it is the foundation on which these songs, new and old alike, are built. With the variety in arrangements and guests in and out adding to Weinrich‘s vocals and guitar, there is a sense of completeness about Forever Gone that feels progressed forward from Adrift even as it stays loyal to the form.

It is impossible to know where the next decade might take Wino as a performer or a human being, but with this collection, his place as America’s Godfather of Doom is reaffirmed even as he breaks the confines of doom itself; though anyone who tells you Forever Gone isn’t heavy needs to recheck their definition of the word. As vibrant as this material is, and as much as it brims with the passion and creative intensity that brought it to bear in the studio, there continues to be a heft that is either underlying or at the fore, moving no less dynamically than the arrangements of the songs throughout, and no less crucial to the understanding of what this record is. I’ve said before, on plenty of occasions, there’s only one Wino. That’s where the count remains. And if Forever Gone is his way of marking the passage of the last 10 years, it is of due substance to be up to that task.

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Psychlona Premiere “Blast Off” Video; Venus Skytrip out Aug. 21

Posted in Bootleg Theater on June 23rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

psychlona

Bradford, UK, kebab aficionados and groove purveyors Psychlona will release their second album, Venus Skytrip, on Aug. 21 through Ripple Music (CD/DL) and Cursed Tongue Records (LP). It is the follow-up to 2018’s Mojo Rising (discussed here) and sees the four-piece upping their game thematically and in terms of songcraft, presenting eight tracks across 49 minutes that won’t be pushed when they don’t want to go and yet seem to have no trouble whatsoever finding momentum when it suits them. To wit, the seven-minute opener, “Blast Off” — video premiering below — has a head of steam almost before you realize it in listening, and yet even as the subsequent “10,000 Volts” explodes in volume from its quiet beginning, setting up trades back and forth across its eight-minute span, Psychlona in no way sound rushed or out of step with what best suits the song.

“10,000 Volts” takes off in its second half, pushing out out out until finally it recedes to end quiet, and from there the beast that is Venus Skytrip unfolds a succession of shorter pieces, with “Blow” (6:05) making its presence felt through a combinationPsychlona Venus Skytrip of earthbound chug and swing and airy vocal melody while the each-under-four-minutes pair of “Star” and “Edge of the Universe” seem set to motor full-on terrestrial desert-style until the latter winds up in atmospheric hypnosis for a stretch in its second half. They bring it back around — to their credit — but the journey’s a joy just the same, and more shifts between languid stoner vibes and massive volume play out through “Resin” and “Tijuana” seems to bring with it a new level of tonal fullness in following, so the band readily break out a series of tricks along the way before they get around to rounding out with “The Owl,” which fills the last nine minutes of Venus Skytrip with a purpose somewhere between heavy psychedelia and hard-edged stomp, at least until the riff builds into its crash just after five minutes in, the bass takes hold and leads into and out of the record’s last build, which like the thing itself, is a trip well worth taking.

If flashing lights, colors or ladies dancing in silhouette isn’t your thing, I guess maybe “Blast Off” is best left to play in the tab so you can listen while you go back to checking the news or staring at other people’s pretend lives on social media or whatever it is hu-mans do these days on their phones. Gotta be something. Maybe you caught a glimpse of Psychlona in Freak Valley‘s consolation stream last weekend. The band showed up to say hi and that they were already confirmed to appear in 2021, so that’s something to look forward to, and one expects they’ll do much supporting of Venus Skytrip when the opportunity presents itself, as surely it will sooner or later.

Until then, there’s nothing like starting an album with a launch sequence, and yes, “Blast Off” has one. I’m happy to host the premiere of the track and the video below.

The band give their own view on things after the player, and you should read that because it rules.

Please enjoy:

Psychlona, “Blast Off” official video

Behind The Trip – Psychlona on Venus Skytrip:

After the unexpected memorialisation (hmm) of our debut, we started to think about where we should go boldly with the next one. We knew we didn’t want to lose too much of the rawness and homespun vibe that defined the scratchy fun of the first album, but we also wanted to go one step further with this effort and really focus the sound. So the two-step plan would be number one: make it heavier and two: turn up the spaciness to the nth. As is tradition around these parts we hunted down a stack of the area’s finest grilled kebabs and various fermented beverages, descending on The Cave – a place of pure tyranny and filth, but also home – for writing sessions taking place between October and January (a leisurely pace was also integral to the process, natch).

The songs were coming on nicely, we had fallen upon a winning formula that was something along the lines of more chilli = better song, but we needed to decide on a venue to match our aspirations of ‘going nuclear’. Step forward Andy Hawkins and The Nave. We were made aware of Andy by our regular sound tech who had recorded his band’s last album with Andy and recommended we work with him. Instantly Andy ‘got’ us and with a punk rock pedigree to boot we knew he was our guy – regaling us deep into the night with chaotic tales of Captain Sensible and traffic cone theft (events may or may not be true).

Anyway, come February Andy began putting us through our paces and by way of the incredible live room at The Nave – an old church hall – we were able to capture some truly huge drum sounds (see The Owl). Technical wizardry abounds (Andy), fuzz pedals galore, sausage rolls and a cauldron full of Yorkshire Tea later guitars, bass and vocals (real tape echo, obvs) were all down. Notwithstanding a much welcome intervention from a global pandemic, we emerged from the back door of the church stumbling towards the light – battered, bruised and with a suspected case of rickets among the maladies – clutching a grubby acetate of spaced out hard rock jams.

So there it was, behold, an album, eight tracks of new Psychlona. When the fog receded from our scorched minds it appeared we’d taken a year long ride through space taking in Venus and Mars before doing a quick lap of the Sun (Blast Off), encountered 27 club rock ‘n’ roll tragedy (Star), drifted around in a smoke fuelled beachside dream (Resin) before taking a lengthy acid trip courtesy of The Owl himself. Who knows where chapter 3 could take us?

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Brimstone Coven Post “The Inferno” Lyric Video; The Woes of a Mortal World Preorders Available

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 22nd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

brimstone coven

Aug. 21 is the release date of the fourth Brimstone Coven album, The Woes of a Mortal Earth, which will also be their first on Ripple Music. The richly melodic Wheeling, West Virginia, cult heavy rockers have a new lyric video up now for “The Inferno,” the and finds guitarist Corey Roth and bassist Andrew D’Cagna working in fluid harmonies on vocals no less than one has come to expect from the band, who proved there was life after Metal Blade and life after losing their lead singer with 2017’s declarative What Was and What Shall Be. The answer, as it happens, is that what was, was, and what shall be is a new record. Go figure.

Definitely hear some Mountain in “The Inferno” and that’s not at all a complaint.

Preorders are up for the album now, and the PR wire brings details:

brimstone coven the woes of a mortal earth

Occult rock trio BRIMSTONE COVEN unveil details for new album ‘The Woes of a Mortal Earth’ on Ripple Music; preorder and stream first single now!

US occult hard rockers BRIMSTONE COVEN share all details for their upcoming fourth album ‘The Woes of a Mortal Earth’, due out August 21st and available to preorder now on Ripple Music. Join the magic circle with “The Inferno” lyric video!

While summoning eerie forces from the past, from the timeless heaviness of Sabbath and Coven to the wholehearted rock force of Led Zeppelin, BRIMSTONE COVEN craft a timeless and wholehearted brand of sonic witchery that will hold any soul captive inside its magic circle. The past and future collide in a dazzling big bang, melding foreboding atmospheres with a bright and intoxicating vocals from Corey Roth and Andrew D’Cagna.

The West Virginians have recently signed a worldwide deal with Ripple Music, for the release of their fourth album ‘The Woes of a Mortal Earth’ on August 21st and available to preorder in the following formats:

– Rare Test Pressing LP
– Worldwide Edition Classic Black Vinyl LP
– Limited Edition Colored Vinyl LP (200 copies)

BRIMSTONE COVEN “The Woes of a Mortal Earth”
Out August 21st on Ripple Music – PREORDER

TRACK LISTING:
1. The Inferno
2. When The World Is Gone
3. Live With A Ghost
4. The Darker Half
5. Secrets of The Earth
6. Song of Whippoorwill

Hailing from eastern Ohio, the band was conceptualized by vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Corey Roth in 2011, quickly joined by John Williams (vocals), Andrew D’Cagna (bass) and Justin Wood (drums). A five song? EP was self-released in 2012, followed by a full length in 2013. 2014 saw the band signing a two-album deal with veteran underground label Metal Blade Records. The first two recordings were repackaged and released under Metal Blade as one album, followed by the album ‘Black Magic’ in early 2016. 2017 proved to be a transitional year for BRIMSTONE COVEN. The band parted ways with Metal Blade, as well as original vocalist John and drummer Justin. Dave Trik joined soon after to take over drumming duties and the band collectively decided to forge on as a trio. New songs were penned and the album ‘What Was and What Shall Be’ was released independently in 2018. Fans responded very positively to the lineup change and new material. Three successful US tours to promote the album soon followed, covering the Northeast, Midwest and Southern states.

The rest of 2019 was spent honing a new batch of songs and the band entered the studio in early 2020. The result would prove to be BRIMSTONE COVEN’s darkest sounding album to date, ‘The Woes of a Mortal Earth’. The new year also saw the trio signing a new deal with the venerable label Ripple Music. Despite the foreboding atmosphere of their new album, the future of Brimstone Coven has never looked so bright.

BRIMSTONE COVEN is
Corey Roth – Guitar & Vocals
Andrew D’Cagna – Bass & Vocals
Dave Trik – Drums

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Brimstone Coven, “The Inferno” lyric video

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Curse the Son Post “Suicide by Drumer” Video; Excruciation out Now

Posted in Bootleg Theater on June 15th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

curse the son

Connecticut’s Curse the Son released their new album, Excruciation (review here), through Ripple Music, and their posting of the video below for opening track “Suicide by Drummer” at the end of the week is a bit of late promotional push that the record well earns. In a time where so much struggle is focused on outward factors, sociopolitical or otherwise, Excruciation focuses on inner and personal experience, drawing the listener into a tumult and turmoil that is at times exemplified by the riffs that seem to roll out of the speakers one after the other.

I could go on about the record, how it blows the roof off what Curse the Son have done before, the writing collaboration between guitarist/vocalist/founder Ron Vanacore and bassist/vocalist Brendan Keefe bringing new complexity and melodic reach in collaboration with producer Eric Lichter (who also participated instrumentally and on vocals), drummer Robert Ives, and guest vocalist/guitarist Joetown (who takes lead in both regards on CD bonus closer “Phoenix Rising”). I could, but hell, I already reviewed the album, and you can hear the whole thing for yourself with the Bandcamp stream at the bottom of this post, so don’t let me spoil it. Suffice it to say that Excruciation stands among 2020’s most welcome arrivals. See you at list time, boys.

Enjoy the video below, followed by more from the PR wire and that album stream:

Curse the Son, “Suicide by Drummer” official video

From the album ‘Excruciation’
Ripple Music
Release date: June 12, 2020

Vinyl, CD and Digital Download available at:
http://cursetheson.com
http://ripplemusic.com

Produced and Edited by : Todd Rawiszer
Live footage : Steve Wytas & Brandon J. Rashan

New Haven’s doom rock warriors CURSE THE SON unleash a second video taken from their dark and genre-defying fourth album ‘Excruciation’, available Friday 12th June on Ripple Music.

Marking their great return, their 2020 full-length ‘Excruciation’ was recorded at Dirt Floor studios in August 2019, produced by Eric Lichter.

CURSE THE SON are:
Ron Vanacore – Guitars & Vocals
Brendan Keefe – Bass & Vocals
Robert Ives – Drums

Curse the Son, Excruciation (2020)

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Album Review: Curse the Son, Excruciation

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

Curse The Son Excruciation

Curse the Son records do not happen every day, and for those who have or those who haven’t followed the trajectory of the Connecticut-based outfit over the years as founding guitarist/vocalist Ron Vanacore has seen lineups come and go and years pass at an ever-increasing pace, their catalog only really tells part of the tell of everything they’ve been through. That’s especially the case with Excruciation, which is the band’s second offering through Ripple Music behind 2016’s Isolator (review here), and fourth overall, with their prior two long-players being 2012’s Psychache (review here) and 2011’s Klonopain (review here).

If you notice there a decreasing rate of releases, from one year between the first two records to four between each the second and the third and the third and the fourth, lineup shifts account for part of it. Vanacore brought in bassist Brendan Keefe on Isolator and Keefe returns on the nine-song/49-minute Excruciation with an even deeper level of contribution to the songwriting — even going so far as to take on vocal and guitar duties apart from those already fulfilled by Vanacore in addition to handling the low end.

Songs like “Novembre,” the twang-inflected blues blowout that is the penultimate “Devil Doctor Blues,” and the call and response that emerges in the standout chorus of “Worry Garden” would seem to be examples of the greater level of musical conversation particularly between the two players, and many of Excruciation‘s overarching themes — almost universally based around various turmoils and distraught/despairing feelings; it’s by no means a “happy” record on its face (or lack of a face, if you’re looking at the cover art) — are reportedly derived from Keefe‘s experience being involved in and eventually recovering from the trauma of a motorcycle accident in late-2018. Though the album ends on a hopeful note with the classic metal-tinged wailing vocals of and uptempo groove of “Phoenix Risin’,” the message of going through hell to get to that point isn’t at all lost on the listener. Tough times meeting with heavy riffs; this is the stuff upon which doom is made, and Curse the Son are well in their element in this sphere.

At the same time, as they also welcome drummer Robert Ives for his first studio appearance with them, Curse the Son also use the increased amount of collaboration as a means to expand the parameters of their sound. Rest assured, the foundation of Excruciation is still in the depth of tone and the manner in which the riffs lead the way through the songs, but the key difference between this album and what the three-piece brought to their earlier outings is that the balance between “riff” and “song” has changed, and it’s the former serving the latter to a greater degree than they’ve ever put to record before.

Their melodies, especially on vocals, are richer, their progressions are more varied, and there’s more atmosphere throughout Excruciation that ties the material together in exciting and dynamic ways. Vanacore and Curse the Son have never had a problem busting out memorable hooks — IsolatorPsychache and Klonopain were full of them — and so is this album. The uptempo circa-’75 Sabbathian jumper that is opener “Suicide by Drummer” makes its presence felt first with a key change in the vocals in the first verse and thereby signals the greater range through which the band will work across the record that follows.

curse the son

Ives brings suitable swing there and adds to the downward-moving march of the subsequent “Disaster in Denial,” the later harmonies of which payoff a potential Curse the Son seemed to tease on Isolator as the first effort with Keefe backing Vanacore on vocals, but there’s no question Curse the Son are a stronger band for what the bassist(-plus) brings to the proceedings throughout these tracks. Playing off Vanacore‘s familiar rolling riffs and echoing verses, a song like the sprawling “Novembre” touches ground that wouldn’t have even seemed possible for Curse the Son four years ago, hitting on notions of layering and melody-construction that are surprising and thrilling in like measure.

And though “Novembre” arguably pushes farthest in that regard, it’s by means the only instance. “Worry Garden”‘s backing vocals, the grunge-style brooding of the title-track, the pure Alice in Chains-style showing in “Infinite Regression” and the kick-into-payoff of “Black Box Warning” — all of this and more feeds into the notion of Curse the Son as a more dynamic and aesthetically broad unit than they’ve ever been.

The big irony of Excruciation, then, is that as much misery as it’s conveying, the record itself is a complete victory. Even as it rounds out with “Devil Doctor Blues,” drawing to mind some of Geezer‘s earlier slide work, and “Phoenix Risin'” showing off a fist-up-heavy-metal vocal soar that’s a kind of who-knew-they-had-it-in-’em? moment in itself — those verse lines get a little repetitive, but hell’s bell’s, repetition is the point — Excruciation sees Curse the Son pursuing new avenues of expression, and though by modern standards, the album is on the longer end of a single LP at 49 minutes, the songwriting around which it’s based and the riffs from which these songs take their shape more than justify the journey the listener undertakes from front end to back, emotionally grueling as that might be at times.

Tracked over a period of months beginning in August 2019 and culminating in a mix completed in January 2020, Excruciation is the second record Curse the Son have put together at Dirt Floor Studios in Haddam, CT, working with producer Eric Lichter, and the band themselves have noted giving Lichter a larger role in the presentation of the songs and the way in which the material was finalized and arranged. If the result of that is some of the lengthening of Curse the Son‘s sonic reach as can be heard throughout their fourth album, then clearly they’ve found the right pair of ears to help them make the most of what they’ve been doing all along — all the more because it’s in no way overproduced.

For those seeking pure riff-based heavy, Curse the Son will satisfy no less than they ever have, but that’s only a piece of what Excruciation has to offer, and if the experiences that inspired it were difficult, then at very least it wasn’t all for nothing. A work like this is the kind of thing bands dream of realizing.

Curse the Son, Excruciation (2020)

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Stream Review: Freedom Hawk Play New Songs Live, 06.03.20

Posted in Reviews on June 5th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

freedom hawk livestream

If you want to know the arguments in favor of bands doing live streams, here are a couple numbers to consider. In about 13 hours after completing their 25-minute set from what was presumably their rehearsal room in Virginia Beach, Virginia, the heavy rock four-piece Freedom Hawk boasted 8,100 views of the resultant video. It was shared nearly 100 times, including by me, and had over 425 comments. True, none of that translates directly to money. They probably didn’t sell many t-shirts specifically as a result of doing the stream, but consider this: they also set up a donation link and brought in — as of this writing — $630.

I don’t know how much Freedom Hawk get paid to play a show, but I do know this: playing this gig involved no major travel for the group. They didn’t have to load in or load out, or find a place to eat in a strange city, or spend money on gas, food or lodging. They were able to directly engage their fans while also keeping the presentation strictly on their own terms. It was a GoPro or a phone set up in a corner of their rehearsal room. It kind of looked like a security camera, actually. But they played four songs — a smart move to keep it relatively brief; a lesson other streamers who approach it like a regular live show should learn — that are as yet unfamiliar to their fans, got to showcase the direction of their new record, and rather than go through the give-and-take of touring, were able to take in a decent amount of money that they can then take forward to the recording process.

Of course, touring has other tangible and intangible upsides, but so does streaming. I wouldn’t advocate one over the other; I’d advocate both if circumstances allowed for them. But in the current pandemic situation even as lockdowns ease, streaming makes the most sense, and even though I saw them in January live on stage in Brooklyn (review here), I have no problem admitting to being grateful for the opportunity to check them out again from the comfort of my own home, without driving into the city, paying tolls, gas, social anxiety and so on.

True, being at home offers its own distractions. A 6PM start-time came up against my toddlerian son’s bedtime, and I spent the first eight or so minutes of the stream trying to cast it from my phone’s Facebook app to the Chromecast in my living room, without ever succeeding. My wife had a Zoom birthday party for one of her friends at the same time, and all of this was happening at once. It was far, far removed from the experience of being in front of a stage, staring ahead as Freedom Hawk graced a crowd with new songs and a set of old favorites. But like any new experience, there are kinks to work out in terms of process on all ends, including the audience’s. And it being live, as opposed to just a watching a video pre-recorded, makes a huge difference in the mindset.

I don’t know when Freedom Hawk‘s next record might surface, but the songs sounded spot-on. With the four-piece arranged in a circle facing each other as they surely would in rehearsal, it was fun to hear drummer Lenny Hines ask what one of the new songs was called — it was “Seize the Day,” as guitarist/vocalist T.R. Morton informed, his signature effects coming through his voice when he sang on mic — and there were other flashes of the band’s persona that came through subtly. It has to be a little awkward for a group basically inviting an audience into a rehearsal space that was previously entirely their own — the banners on the wall, a flag on the ceiling, the garage doors up; maybe a storage area or something like that? hard to tell — but HinesMorton, bassist Mark Cave and guitarist Brendan O’Neill made the most of the occasion, stopping for a sip of beer between songs and even offering a “cheers” to the virtual crowd. As I might at a show, I lifted my cup of water in salute.

As for the new material, the other cuts alongside “Seize the Day” were “Baron,” “Dickerson” and “Jimmy Jam,” though of course any and all titles might change before a final record comes out. The sound was quintessential Freedom Hawk: flashes of NWOBHM riffing set to a forward heavy-rock groove, moments of psychedelic nuance brought to bear with strong purpose in the songwriting. Freedom Hawk have never been a hard band to appreciate when it comes to hearing tracks for the first time, and that accessibility served them well in this context. It wouldn’t work for every band, but again, at 25 minutes, this was almost a teaser for the live experience and their next album at the same time. And having sat and watched it in its entirety, even distracted by a pre-bedtime diaper change and getting dinner started, I look forward both to when I might see the band again — on stage or not, should they decide to do another stream — as well as hearing the LP when it might arrive.

This was fun. Watch it here.

Freedom Hawk on Thee Facebooks

Freedom Hawk on Bandcamp

Freedom Hawk website

Ripple Music website

Ripple Music on Bandcamp

Ripple Music on Thee Facebooks

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Kingnomad Announce Sagan Om Rymden out July 10; Premiere “Multiverse”

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on May 15th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

kingnomad

A little prog, a little cult rock, some space, some psych, some classic heavy blues there in “Small Beginnings” and a lush affiliation for ’70s melodicism that feels drawn somewhere between modern Opeth and earliest Ghost, distilling the progressive craft of the one and the unmitigated accessibility of the other into something their own and, when it wants to be, either self-contained in an engaging fashion or outward reaching to breadths the end of which it hasn’t yet discovered — all of this and more makes up the 43-minute stretch of Kingnomad‘s third album, Sagan Om Rymden. Set for release July 10 on Ripple Music, you can hear the premiere of the centerpiece “Multiverse” at the bottom of this post. I suggest you click play promptly.

Sagan Om Rymden follows 2018’s The Great Nothing (review here), which itself was an encouraging follow-up to the 2017 debut, Mapping the Inner Void (review here). With the third LP, the Swedish four-piece now confirm the longer-term nature of their creative evolution, even as they bring to light the most accomplished melodies of the band’s still-relatively-young career. It is hypnosis without stillness.

Enjoy:

Kingnomad - Sagan Om Rymden

KINGNOMAD – Sagan Om Rymden – July 10

European preorder / US preorder

KINGNOMAD were born in 2014 in a small forest village in northern Sweden. Best friends and neighbors, Jay and Marcus had the desire to create a blend of old 70s sound, nice haunting vocal arrangements, and lyrics that could carry you of to dark and distant worlds. Bass maestro Maximilian was quickly recruited, alongside legendary punk drummer Andreas. Five songs were recorded and came to the attention to Ripple Music, who released four of those on to the second coming of heavy split vinyl series.

Shortly after that, on February 24th 2017, KINGNOMAD’s debut album ‘Mapping the inner void’ was released! A heavy psychedelic piece through Lovecraftian soundscapes. And the songs kept on coming… That very same year the writing of a new album began. And with the new drummer Mano behind the kit, ‘The Great Nothing’ became a grand conceptual piece of music. With their third album, KINGNOMAD are still evolving to higher grounds, never standing still, making new sounds while maintaining the ”Nomad vibe”. ‘Sagan Om Rymden’ is coming out on July 10th via Ripple Music. Are you ready to be transported to the limits of space…and beyond?

KINGNOMAD’s third studio album ‘Sagan Om Rymden’ appears much more progressive than the previous ones (surfing on an occult doom wave). This new record oozes vintage space rock riffage driven by clear Captain Beyond-esque vocals and Sabbathian lyrics. “Multiverse” is an ode to the trip, in every sense! Repetitive oriental inspired elements flirt with 70s synths and fuzzy loops. You won’t escape its hypnotizing call.

New album ‘Sagan Om Rymden’ out July 10th on Ripple Music

TRACK LISTING :
1. Omniverse
2. Small Beginnings
3. The Omega Experiment
4. Tillbakablick The Usurper King
5. Multiverse
6. The Fermi Paradox
7. The Creation Hymn
8. On The Shoulders Of Giants
9. The Unanswered Question

KINGNOMAD are:
Mr Jay (Johnny Stenberg) – Vocals, lead guitar, piano and assorted synthesizers
Mano – Drums, percussion and backing vocals
Marcus – Guitars and MicroKorg
Maximilian – Bass and backing vocals

https://www.facebook.com/kingnomadofficial
https://www.instagram.com/kingnomadofficial/
https://kingnomad.bandcamp.com/releases
http://www.ripple-music.com/
https://ripplemusic.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/theripplemusic/
https://instagram.com/RippleMusic

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