Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin to Release Collaborative Stygian Bough Volume 1 June 26

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 7th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin (Photo by Lauren Lamp)

Certainly  Noam Chomsky Phd Thesis - Benefit the most from your shopping for drugs with our drugstore. Visit us today to get more generous deals. Spend less Bell Witch and 18-9-2007 ˇ Whether you’re trying to solve a tough problem, start a business, get top 10 College Application Essay Writing Service Proofreading attention for that business or write an Aerial Ruin are no strangers to each other. As the PR wire details,  college application essay writing service a successful http://www.estcadeaux.com/?homework-help-for-advanced-financial-accounting-7e committee member and dissertation how to write an application letter head Erik Moggridge, who is  The http://www.joyshop.it/?custom-essay-meaning services providing high quality dissertation writing help for you. Any discipline within your time-frame Aerial Ruin, has guested on  Example Of Executive Summary In Business Plan - Compose a timed custom essay with our help and make your tutors startled find key recommendations as to how to receive the Bell Witch releases since their outset, perhaps most gloriously on 2017’s gorgeous and excruciating Hire a website content writer from a trusted website Can Do My Homework to write engaging and exciting content for your website or blog. Mirror Reaper (review here), so what making their collaboration official in the matrimonial sense would seem to indicate is mostly a change of mindset and perhaps writing process. Still, those who listened to that record — and if that’s not you, it’s not too late! — will have some decent idea of what  http://ems-online.org/?thesis-of-phd-in-law The red arrow moocs @insidehighered #help cant do my #essay … research paper stage of the meditations, we Stygian Bough Volume 1 is going for in terms of basic feel, as the streaming track “Heaven Torn Low II (The Toll)” would seem to hint.

One can only look forward to appreciation the beauty in darkness to come with the album’s arrival, and having seen these two entities share a stage before, should the opportunity arise again, it won’t be one to miss.

The PR wire brings Thesis For Masters In Public Administration - Benefit from our affordable custom term paper writing service and benefit from amazing quality Forget about those Adam Burke cover art and speaks thus:

bell witch aerial ruin Stygian Bough Volume 1

BELL WITCH AND AERIAL RUIN ANNOUNCE COLLABORATIVE RECORD STYGIAN BOUGH VOLUME 1 – OUT JUNE 26 ON PROFOUND LORE

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Renowned doom duo Bell Witch fully integrate themselves with dark folk elegist, Aerial Ruin. The collaborative effort, titled ‘Stygian Bough Volume 1’ is a collection of five transcendent, hauntingly beautiful songs that defy categorization.

On Stygian Bough Volume I, members Dylan Desmond and Jesse Shreibman of renowned doom duo, Bell Witch fully integrate themselves with dark folk elegist, Erik Moggridge of Aerial Ruin. Genuine collaborations are rare yet these two found a way to become one, resulting in a hauntingly beautiful record.

While Moggridge has been a part of Bell Witch’s sonic fingerprint on all their prior records, perhaps most notably for his vocals on their previous acclaimed full-length, Mirror Reaper, he’s now part of the very fabric that makes up the five, emotional and strikingly heavy songs that comprise Stygian Bough Volume 1.

The addition of guitar to the bass and drum-only dynamic came naturally as the threesome discussed potential models for their joint effort. Ulver’s unorthodox folk album Kveldssanger came up as did Candlemass’ mile marker Nightfall. But the real fuel to Stygian Bough Volume I was the Bell Witch track, “Rows (of Endless Waves)”, which was not only Moggridge’s first appearance with Bell Witch but also a track that has deeply resonated with Desmond over the years. With the approach in place, Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin collectively wrote five desolate yet mystical songs that defy categorization. From the mournful “The Bastard Wind” and the crepuscular “Heaven Torn Low I (the passage)” to the monstrous “Heaven Torn Low II (the toll)” and the liturgical gloom of “The Unbodied Air,” Stygian Bough Volume I is an album of deep, dark undertows and careful respite.

The themes explored by Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin were independently tackled from different angles but were mainly from similar spaces. Whereas Bell Witch plumbed the depths of purgatory—a place of atonement between life and death—across three full-lengths, Moggridge’s Aerial Ruin have centered on the loss of the self and the spiritual places the vacancy ultimately leads to. For Stygian Bough Volume I, Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin topics of choice intersect and complement, continuing in spirit but with a broader vantage point where “Rows (of Endless Waves)” left off.

“Stygian Bough is a reference to the theme of The Golden Bough,” observes Desmond. “The book’s theme is centered on the rites of a temple in ancient Italy where slaves were transformed into kings by slaying he who reigned as such after successfully stealing the Golden Bough from the sacred tree within the temple. Within that notion, a different sort of slavery was brought upon the newly crowned king, as he must understand sooner or later that his fate would ultimately be the same as his predecessor. In short, the golden bough made a king out of a slave only to find they were now enslaved to a different sort of tyranny, always stalking them from the darkest shadows of their imagination. From this perspective, the “golden bough” is better understood as a deception casting darkness. Thus, Stygian Bough.”

Adds Moggridge: “They presented that song [“Rows (of Endless Waves)”] to me in a mostly instrumental form with the idea that it’s about a ghost trapped on rows of waves that can’t reach the land. I ran with this idea and started to think of the ghost of a king who, if he reached land could be reborn and rule again. The king is also a larger metaphor for humanity who rules over the planet and other species. On this new album our ghost upon the waves flees not towards the land but towards death. The narrative, as much as it exists, is loose and not linear and definitely stream of consciousness. There are cyclical and spherical qualities to the journey where death, desolation, and the spirit are reflected in myriad ways.”

Stygian Bough Volume I sees its release June 26 via Profound Lore Records. For pre-orders and additional information on limited pressings and exclusive variants, visit here. Stygian Bough Volume I was recorded and mixed by Randall Dunn at Avast Recording Co. in Seattle. Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin then took the full-length to mastering ace Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering Service in Chicago. The result is a full-length of profound lows and delicate highs — fitting for Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin’s quiet/introspective and heavy/loud dynamic. As for the triumvirate’s next steps, they plan on touring in support of Stygian Bough Volume I when it’s safe to do so. Stay tuned for tour updates.

Stygian Bough Volume 1 Track Listing:
1 – The Bastard Wind
2 – Heaven Torn Low I (the passage)
3 – Heaven Torn Low II (the toll)
4 – Prelude
5 – The Unbodied Air

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Bell Witch & Aerial Ruin, “Heaven Torn Low II (The Toll)”

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Snail Post “Nothing Left for You” Video; New Single out Now

Posted in Bootleg Theater on May 6th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

snail

New Details: WMUR has an opening for an link/associate producer. We are seeking someone with excellent news judgment and writing skills. Snail video, you say? Don’t mind if I do, thanks. The timing certainly works, as the Pacific Coast — Seattle-ish and Los Angeles — three-piece have newly issued the single hop over to here If you are interested how to make sure your writings are legal then this article is just for you. Practice Areas Joint Degree Let our Nothing Left for You/Fearless, with the second cut being a cover of pleasures of love essay robertson davies Find Someone To Write My Paper dissertation sebastian meinke chicago essay style Meddle-era thesis and dissertation uf http://www.guate-jug.net/research-literature-review-example/s college students who do assignments for pay non plagiarized homework Pink Floyd and the first cut being their first recording since later-2015’s  The Pay For Homework Example The Best Day Of My Life Essay Example - Title Ebooks : The Best Day Of My Life Essay Example - Category : Kindle Feral (review here). They hit the studio in January to get going on their next long-player, and while “Nothing Left for You” will feature on that album, it’s hard to know how representative it might be of the upcoming-at-some-point batch of material either way, but it does find them making some interesting turns in sound, with some of the raw buzz one might find in their 1993 self-titled debut (review here) resurfacing along with the speedier groove than one has come to expect. It’s also catchy as hell, so if I haven’t said this before about it — and I’m pretty sure I have — I’m glad to take it as it comes.

They are right at home in “Fearless” as well, with guitarist  Custom papers for all levels . AllCustomPapers.com provides help in writing factually sound and aesthetically pleasing Help Coming Up With A Thesis Statement, books reports Mark Johnson‘s dreamy vocal melody floating out over his own watery effects, backed by bassist/recording engineer  Matt Lynch with drummer Marty Dodson keeping the groove grounded and rolling forward. As much as “Nothing Left for You” is about shove — and particularly ‘shove-away,’ in terms of its lyrical theme — Snail make “Fearless” into a deep-dive melodic showcase, emphasizing not only the influence of Pink Floyd, but the grittier, and weightier edge they bring to what was already there. Both songs end with a fadeout, and the underlying message of the release is clearly that there’s more to follow, and as a fan of the band, I can only look forward to the next album whenever it might arrive. Everyone’s plans being shot as they are this year, I wouldn’t hazard a guess as to when something might manifest, but in the interim, the video for “Nothing Left for You” has some fun with being stuck at home during quarantine, and again, I’ll take it as it comes.

And it bears mentioning that Lynch mixed and mastered Nothing Left for You/Fearless at his Mysterious Mammal Recordings in L.A. (they tracked at All Welcome Records) and as discussed in his days of rona, he’s up for mixing whatever you’ve got and is looking for remote clients. When I finally get to recording that spoken word/keyboard drone album, I’ll definitely be sending it to him to edit out the burps.

Enjoy the video:

Snail, “Nothing Left for You” official video

From the single Nothing Left For You / Fearless released 5/1/2020. Get your copy here: https://snailhq.bandcamp.com/

Video edited and produced by Matt Lynch. Music by Snail (Mark Johnson, Matt Lynch, Marty Dodson)

Recorded by Matt Lynch at All Welcome Records, Los Angeles USA. Mixed and mastered by Matt Lynch at Mysterious Mammal Recordings Los Angeles. Additional recording by Mark Johnson at home in Seattle. Engineered by Jennifer Hendrix.

Snail is:
Matt Lynch (Bass/Vocals)
Marty Dodson (Drums)
Mark Johnson (Lead Vocals/Guitar)

Snail, Nothing Left for You / Fearless (2020)

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Snail to Issue Nothing Left for You / Fearless Single This Friday

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 29th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

snail

The new original track buzzes with a neo-psych edge that Snail‘s never quite shown in this way before, and the B-side is a take on Meddle-era Pink Floyd, so yes, the first new music from Snail in a whopping half-decade is welcome. Nothing Left for You / Fearless comes topped off with artwork by Sean “Skillit” McEleny and is intended as something of a precursor to the next Snail long-player, which the band reports is already mostly done. That’s good news too, frankly, since it’s going on five years since 2015’s Feral (review here) and that means they’re certainly due. “Nothing Left for You” bodes well of what that album might portend tonally — it doesn’t quite drift, but the guitars seem to have loosed some heft in favor of shimmer and that’s interesting to hear from a band whose trade has been psych-through-lumber for so long.

Fascinating, as Spock would say.

He’d also say you should check it out on Friday when it’s released. No, I don’t know what day it is, but I know it’s not Friday because the song isn’t on their Bandcamp yet. That’s all I’ve got to go on.

Well, that and this from the PR wire:

snail nothing left for you fearless

Snail to Release First New Music in Six Years

Snail will release their first new music since 2014’s Feral on May 1, 2020. “Nothing Left For You,” the advanced single from their forthcoming as-yet-untitled LP, will be accompanied by a cover of Pink Floyd’s “Fearless”. This is only the second time Snail has recorded a cover song in its 27-year existence. The two songs will be available as a digital-only download from Bandcamp. “Nothing Left For You” will appear on the LP in physical form in the future, but “Fearless” will be an exclusive digital release.

“Nothing Left For You” is a particularly vicious rant against an unnamed entity. It’s fuzzy, driving, and pissed off.

Says Snail: “We’ve all had someone or something in our lives that were just toxic, and no amount of expended energy could turn that around. This song is a final kiss-off; a cathartic, scathing take down that is sometimes necessary to move past a relationship and regain a sense of self and power.”

Why cover “Fearless”? “Having been Floyd fans forever, we have been talking about doing that tune for 25 years. It’s a great song, and seemed open for a heavy interpretation. When writing “Nothing Left For You,” I actually used some characters from “Fearless” in the lyrics, so it only made sense to pair these two and finally realize the vision,” says Matt Lynch, bassist/producer.

Snail’s full length LP is currently in the overdub and mixing stage, and should be ready for release in the summer. The band recorded enough material back in January to complete an EP as well, so watch the newswire for updates.

SNAIL:
Marty Dodson – Drums and Percussion
Mark Johnson – Guitar and Lead Vocals
Matt Lynch – Bass, Keys and Vocals

Artwork by Skillit.

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Snail, “Nothing Left for You” drum recording

Snail, Feral (2015)

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Days of Rona: Matt Lynch of Snail & Mysterious Mammal Recording

Posted in Features on April 8th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

The statistics of COVID-19 change with every news cycle, and with growing numbers, stay-at-home isolation and a near-universal disruption to society on a global scale, it is ever more important to consider the human aspect of this coronavirus. Amid the sad surrealism of living through social distancing, quarantines and bans on gatherings of groups of any size, creative professionals — artists, musicians, promoters, club owners, techs, producers, and more — are seeing an effect like nothing witnessed in the last century, and as humanity as a whole deals with this calamity, some perspective on who, what, where, when and how we’re all getting through is a needed reminder of why we’re doing so in the first place.

Thus, Days of Rona, in some attempt to help document the state of things as they are now, both so help can be asked for and given where needed, and so that when this is over it can be remembered.

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

snail matt lynch

Days of Rona: Matt Lynch of Snail & Mysterious Mammal Recording (Los Angeles, California)

How are you dealing with this crisis as a band? Have you had to rework plans at all? How is everyone’s health so far?

So far everyone’s health is good. Mark is convinced that he and his wife had it in late January in Seattle. Of course, this is conjecture but the symptoms matched up. This was before it was even on our radar and no testing but Seattle was the first place it showed up in the States. They are okay now though. I’m in Los Angeles, Mark is in Seattle and Marty is in San Diego, so we don’t play live that often and didn’t have any tour plans yet. We were already in the middle of recording our record and Mark is in the overdub phase up in Seattle so fortunately we are in a good place there. I edit and mix and overdub once Mark is done, so luckily this is something we can continue to do in isolation. I am going to have more time to do this now because I have been laid off from my day job at a travel marketing agency. Not a lot of work going on there, so I’m freed up for mixing and mastering the Snail stuff and finishing Collyn’s Diesel Boots record as well as projects for other artists.

What are the quarantine/isolation rules where you are?

We are in a shelter-in-place here in Los Angeles. We go out for groceries and to walk our dogs. All non-essential businesses are closed, which means everything except medical, grocery, and media. All the beaches and parks are shut down, including bike and walking paths. They tried to keep them open but there are just too many people here in general and we aren’t great at following rules apparently.

How have you seen the virus affecting the community around you and in music?

Everything is closed except to get groceries. My job is gone, at least for the time being. Gigs are all cancelled. There have been a lot of cool live streams happening with music though, and the time to enjoy them. A lot of people are coming together virtually in my community, sharing information, helping each other with groceries and where to find them, trading food items among neighbors for recipes. People are cooking more again, playing music as a family – a bit of the old ways are creeping back in, which is a nice positive. It seems that musicians, or the musicians I know anyway, are generally into cooking. I think there is a parallel there of putting individual elements together to make a whole that is stronger than its parts that appeals to musicians.

What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything?

I think the most important takeaway from this for me is that this has proven just how fast society can change. We are going to come out on the other side of this to a new normal — it won’t be the same — so now is the time to take stock and decide for yourself what you want that new normal to look like, and work towards making it happen.

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Quarterly Review: Slift, IIVII, Coogans Bluff, Rough Spells, Goblinsmoker, Homecoming, Lemurian Folk Songs, Ritual King, Sunflowers, Maya Mountains

Posted in Reviews on March 26th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

quarterly review

Thursday. Everyone doing well? Healthy? Kicking ass? Working from home? There seems to be a lot of that going around, at least among the lucky. New Jersey, where I live, is on lockdown with non-essential businesses shuttered, roads largely empty and all that. It can be grim and apocalyptic feeling, but I’m finding this Quarterly Review to be pretty therapeutic or at least helpfully distracting at a moment when I very much need something to be that. I hope that if you’re reading this, whether you’ve been following along or not, it’s done or can do the same for you if that’s what you need. I’ll leave it at that.

Quarterly Review #31-40:

Slift, Ummon

slift ummon

The second album from French space/psych trio Slift is a 72-minute blowout echoshred epic — too aware not to be prog but too cosmic not to be space rock. Delivered through Stolen Body Records and Vicious Circle, Ummon is not only long, it speaks to a longer term. It’s not an album for this year, or for this decade, or for any other decade, for that matter. It’s for the ongoing fluid now. You want to lose yourself in the depths of buzz and dreamy synth? Yeah, you can do that. You want to dig into the underlying punk and maybe a bit of Elder influence in the vocal bark and lead guitar shimmer of “Thousand Helmets of Gold?” Well hell’s bells, do that. The mega-sprawling 2LP is a gorgeous blast of distortion, backed by jazzy, organic drum wud-dum-tap and the bass, oh, the bass; the stuff of low end sensory displacement. Amid swirls and casts of melodic light in “Dark Was Space, Cold Were the Stars,” Slift dilate universal energy and push beyond the noise wash reaches of “Son Dong’s Cavern” and through the final build, liftoff and roll of 13-minute closer “Lions, Tigers and Bears” with the deft touch of those dancing on prior conceptions. We’d be lucky to have Ummon as the shape of space rock to come.

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IIVII, Grinding Teeth/Zero Sleep

Two LPs telling two different stories released at the same time, Grinding Teeth/Zero Sleep (on Consouling Sounds) brings Josh Graham‘s aural storytelling to new cinematic reaches. The composer, guitarist, synthesist, programmer, visual artist, etc., is joined along the way by the likes of Jo Quail, Ben Weinman (ex-The Dillinger Escape Plan), Dana Schecter (Insect Ark), Sarah Pendleton (ex-SubRosa) and Kim Thayil (Soundgarden) — among others — but across about 90 minutes of fluidity, Graham/IIVII soundtracks two narratives through alternatingly vast and crushing drone. The latter work is actually an adaptation from a short sci-fi film about, yes, humanity losing its ability to sleep — I feel you on that one — but the former, which tells a kind of meth-fueled story of love and death, brings due chaos and heft to go with its massive synthesized scope. Josh Graham wants to score your movie. You should let him. And you should pay him well. And you should let him design the poster. And you should pay him well for that too. End of story.

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Consouling Sounds store

 

Coogans Bluff, Metronopolis

coogans bluff metronopolis

Following the initial sax-laden prog-rock burst and chase that is opener “Gadfly,” Berlin’s Coogans Bluff bring a ’70s pastoralia to “Sincerely Yours,” and that atmosphere ends up staying with Metronopolis — their fifth album — for the duration, no matter where else they might steer the sound. And they do steer the sound. Sax returns (as it will) in the jabbing “Zephyr,” a manic shred taking hold in the second half accompanied by no-less-manic bass, and “Creature of the Light” reimagines pop rock of the original vinyl era in the image of its own weirdness, undeniably rock but also something more. Organ-inclusive highlight “Soft Focus” doesn’t so much touch on psychedelics as dunk its head under their warm waters, and “The Turn I” brings an almost Beatlesian horn arrangement to fruition ahead of the closer “The Turn II.” But in that finale, and in “Hit and Run,” and way back in “Sincerely Yours,” Coogans Bluff hold that Southern-style in their back pocket as one of several of Metronopolis‘ recurring themes, and it becomes one more element among the many at their disposal.

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Rough Spells, Ruins at Midday

rough spells ruins at midday

An underlying current of social commentary comes coated in Rough Spells‘ mysticism on Ruins at Midday, the Toronto unit’s second LP. Recorded by Ian Blurton and presented by Fuzzed and Buzzed and DHU Records, the eight-track LP has, as the lyrics of “Chance Magic” say, “No bad intentions.” Indeed, it seems geared only toward eliciting your participation in its ceremony of classic groove, hooks and melodies, even the mellow “Die Before You Die” presenting an atmosphere that’s heavy but still melodic and accessible. “Grise Fiord” addresses Canada’s history of mistreating its native population, while “Pay Your Dues” pits guitar and vocal harmonics against each other in a shove of proto-metallic energy to rush momentum through side B and into the closing pair of the swaggering “Nothing Left” and the title-track, which is the longest single cut at five minutes, but still keeps its songwriting taut with no time to spare for indulgences. In this, and on several fronts, Ruins at Midday basks in multifaceted righteousness.

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Goblinsmoker, A Throne in Haze, A World Ablaze

goblinsmoker a throne in haze a world ablaze

Upside the head extreme sludgeoning! UK trio Goblinsmoker take on the more vicious and brutal end of sludge with the stench of death on A Throne in Haze, A World Ablaze (on Sludgelord Records), calling to mind the weedian punishment of Belzebong and others of their decrepit ilk. Offered as part two of a trilogy, A Throne in Haze, A World Ablaze is comprised of three tracks running a caustic 26 minutes thick enough such that even its faster parts feel slow, a churning volatility coming to the crash of “Smoked in Darkness” at the outset only to grow more menacing in the lurch of centerpiece “Let Them Rot” — which of course shifts into blastbeats later on — and falling apart into noise and echoing residual feedback after the last crashes of “The Forest Mourns” recede. Beautifully disgusting, the release reportedly furthers the story of the Toad King depicted on its cover and for which the band’s prior 2018 EP was named, and so be it. The lyrics, largely indecipherable in screams, are vague enough that if you’re not caught up, you’ll be fine. Except you won’t be fine. You’ll be dead. But it’ll be awesome.

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Sludgelord Records on Bandcamp

 

Homecoming, LP01

homecoming lp01

Progressive metal underpins French trio Homecoming‘s aptly-titled first record, LP01, with the guitars of second cut “Rivers of Crystal” leading the way through a meandering quiet part and subsequent rhythmic figure that reminds of later Opeth, though there’s still a strong heavy rock presence in their tones and grooves generally. It’s an interesting combination, and all the more so because I think part of what’s giving off such a metal vibe is the snare sound. You don’t normally think of a snare drum determining that kind of thing, but here we are. Certainly the vocal arrangements between gruff melodies, backing screams and growls, etc., the odd bit of blastbeating here and there, bring it all into line as well — LP01 is very much the kind of album that would title its six-minute instrumental centerpiece “Interlude” — but the intricacy in how the nine-minute “Return” develops and the harmonies that emerge early in closer “Five” tell the tale clearly of Homecoming‘s ambitions as they move forward from this already-ambitious debut.

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Lemurian Folk Songs, Logos

lemurian folk songs logos

Tracked in the same sessions as the Budapest outfit’s 2019 album, Ima (review here), it should not come as a major surprise that the six-track/49-minute Logos from Lemurian Folk Songs follows a not entirely dissimilar course, bringing together dream-drift of tones and melodies with subtle but coherent rhythmic motion in a fashion not necessarily revolutionary for heavy psych, but certainly well done and engaging across its tracks. The tones of guitar and bass offer a warmth rivaled only by the echoing vocals on opener/longest cut (immediate points) “Logos,” and the shimmering “Sierra Tejada” and progressively building “Calcination” follow that pattern while adding a drift that is both of heavy psych and outside of it in terms of the character of how it’s played. None of the last three tracks is less than eight minutes long — closer “Firelake” tops nine in a mirror to “Logos” at the outset, but if that’s the band pushing further out I hear, then yes, I want to go along for that trip.

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Ritual King, Ritual King

ritual king ritual king

Progressive heavy rockers Ritual King display a striking amount of grace and patience across their Ripple Music-issued self-titled long-player. Tapping modern influences like Elder and bringing their own sense of melodic nuance to the proceedings across a tightly-constructed seven songs and 42 minutes, the three-piece of vocalist/guitarist Jordan Leppitt, bassist Dan Godwin — whose tone is every bit worthy of gotta-hear-it classification — and drummer/backing vocalist Gareth Hodges string together linear movements in “Headspace” and “Dead Roads” that flow one into the next, return at unexpected moments or don’t, and follow a direction not so much to the next chorus but to the next statement the band want to make, whatever that might be. “Restrain” begins with a sweet proggy soundscape and unfolds two verses over a swaying riff, then is gone, where at the outset, “Valleys” offers grandeur the likes of which few bands would dare to embody on their third or fourth records, let alone their first. Easily one of 2020’s best debuts.

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Sunflowers, Endless Voyage

sunflowers endless voyage

You know what? Never mind. You ain’t weird enough for this shit. Nobody’s weird enough for this shit. I have a hard time believing the two souls from Portugal who made it are weird enough for this shit. Think I’m wrong? Think you’re up for it and you’re gonna put on SunflowersEndless Voyage and be like, “oh yeah, turns out mega-extreme krautrock blasted into outer space was my wavelength all along?” Cool. Bandcamp player’s right there. Have at it. I dare you.

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Maya Mountains, Era

maya mountains era

Italian heavy rockers Maya Mountains formed in 2005 and issued their debut album, Hash and Pornography, through Go Down Records in 2008. Era, which follows a narrative about the title-character whose name is given in lead cut “Enrique Dominguez,” who apparently travels through space after being lost in the desert — as one does — and on that basis alone is clearly a more complex offering than its predecessor. As to where Maya Mountains have been all the time in between records — here and there, in other bands, etc. But Era, at 10 tracks and 44 minutes, is the summation of five years of work on their part and its blend of scope and straight-ahead heavy riffing is welcome in its more heads-down moments like “Vibromatic” or in the purposefully weirder finale “El Toro” later on. Something like a second debut for the band after being away for so long, Era at very least marks the beginning of a new one for them, and one hopes it continues in perhaps more productive fashion than the last.

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Friday Full-Length: Lords of the North, Lords of the North

Posted in Bootleg Theater on March 13th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Lords of the North, Lords of the North (2008)

 

A proposal for a science experiment:

Some label — for hypothetical purposes let’s say it’s Cursed Tongue Records for the vinyl and Ripple Music for the CD, and maybe someone else does a limited tape version somewhere along the line too; I like King Volume, so let’s go with that — releases Lords of the North‘s self-titled debut. That’s it. That’s the experiment.

But here’s the thing. I’m not talking about a reissue. While I may have my fantasies about doing a curated series of reissues through this or that imprint — call me, RidingEasy! — I’m talking about putting out Lords of the North‘s Lords of the North with no mention whatsoever of the fact that the album originally came out in 2008. Sure, on the LP itself you’d probably need to mention when it was recorded or that the Seattle three-piece originally had it out on CD through their own not-really-a-label Tundra Music, but the theory I’m testing is that if you released this record today, 12 years on from its first arrival, it would still kill it.

Hell, put it on Bandcamp with a bare minimum of social media here-it-is-go-get-it-style promotion and I wouldn’t be surprised. The songs. The riffs. The grooves. It’s only 33 minutes long and six tracks, but it taps into the essential heart of what’s so appealing about heavy rock and roll. It has a classic groove and an atmosphere that’s rife for digging in, absolutely no pretense, and whether it’s the Zeppelin-style solo jam-out in the eight-minute “Beams of Light” or the mega-choruses of opener “Souls Come Rising,” the subsequent “Follow the Falcon” or the rougher-edged closing duo of “Loyal Legion” — the chug-verse-into-swing-hook of which is a highlight unto itself; if we’re picking tracks, this one might be the most likely to be stuck in your head for, say, somewhere in the neighborhood of 12 years — and the aptly-named knuckledragging finisher “The March.”

The influences are right there to be absorbed. Comprised of bassist/vocalist Pat Brian Kearney, guitarist Tony Tharp and drummer James Roche and recorded by the band with Chris Duryee, mixed by Phil Ek and mastered by Ed Brooks (cheers, Discogs), the band and record touched on familiar enough pieces from what was already a burgeoning heavy revival. Shades of High on Fire as distilled through The Sword‘s earliest riffing and the Melvins showed up in their work, so of Lords-of-the-North-self titledcourse there’s some Sabbath there too, but the prevailing theme of chilled-to-the-bone frozen wastes that comes through the artwork, the band’s moniker, the subjects of the songs themselves and even the name they picked for their not-really-a-label is all about being really, really, really cold, and that comes through in the tonality as a part of the record’s overarching personality as well.

Mostly it’s conveyed through largesse. Big riffs, big groove, big echo. It may have been their debut, but Lords of the North seem even now to have had no doubt about what they wanted to get across to their audience. There’s perfectly-timed boogie and enough variety in the jammier feel into which “Beams of Light” veers, first with its acoustic guitar and then its going-going-gone lead and the interlude “Steam Caves” that follows, not to mention the rougher-edged vocals that emerge in “Loyal Legion” and “The March,” to carry easily through the 33-minute run without the band coming close to overstaying their welcome. For its lack of pretense, the songwriting on display and the manner in which they put the album together — I wonder if a vinyl release would adjust the tracklisting so that “Beams of Light” and “Steam Caves” were on the same side, or if maybe “Loyal Legion” and “The March” would be split up so that each ended a half of the record to give it more symmetry, but those too are hypotheticals, and for the CD it was, it certainly worked — it was a collection that was has stood the test of time as a kind of refresher on how to make heavy rock sound simple and straightforward without losing sight of the need to find a sense of perspective within the genre.

Because that’s what Lords of the North were doing here. Yeah, it’s a bunch of songs put together to make a record, and that’s hardly a mystical process at this point in history — or, for that matter, in 2008 — but among the lessons the band might have take from what worked so well on their declarative self-titled is that they succeeded in crafting a vision to tie the material together, so that it wasn’t just songs, or just riffs, or crash, or stories about barbarian armies cresting the ice-covered hillside, it was all of it functioning together in order to create a striking and multi-tiered persona for the band and the album.

Would that persona have grown richer with time? I have no reason to think it wouldn’t, but of course, Lords of the North‘s debut was also their swansong. Their social media shows them in the studio in 2012 putting together a follow-up to the self-titled, and in 2014 they unveiled plans for a comic book to go with the album that resulted in some cool-looking panels in keeping with the cover art here — if I’m not mistaken, at some point in their history they worked with Mark Johnson from Snail, either before or after the album, I can’t remember which — though nothing came to fruition for whatever reason. One assumes the usual: life moves on, people move on, etc.

But I’ll stand by this album’s enduring quality and I honestly think that if it came out today — or with a proper promotional cycle befitting a new release — it would catch on in a way it never did during its time. Will that happen? Yeah, probably not. I don’t think labels are lining up yet to mine the late-aughts pre-social media “lost era” of heavy rock for the cause of scientific progress quite yet — there’s still so much of the ’90s to unearth first, underproduced as it all is — but when they get there, Lords of the North will be waiting. Until then, I’m happy to count myself in this record’s loyal legion.

As always, I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading.

What a fucking nightmare. Here’s the thing — am I talking about the ensuing noise and panic about coronavirus or am I talking about trying to feed my kid a peanut butter sandwich before he goes to kiddie-gymnastics class? See? You don’t even know which one it is.

Millions will die.

From the sandwich.

I don’t have any great observations about the pandemic to make that haven’t been said a thousand times by people more eloquent, so screw it. I’m tired. Don’t get sick. There. I said it.

I still don’t wash my hands with soap most of the time.

I still touch my mouth.

If I die of COVID-19, I want my grave to say, “It was biting his nails whut did him in.” Make sure you misspell “what” like that.

I’m so tired.

The Patient Mrs. took the The Pecan aka Dr. “NO!” out to that gymnastics class. That’s good for a few moments’ reprieve. There’s a new Lamp of the Universe album coming out in June. Whatever happens with Roadburn will happen. It will be what it is. Somehow I’m most anxious about that.

Next week is great. Not good. Great. Two more Dozer full album streams on Monday and Wednesday. Tuesday the new King Buffalo EP streams in full. Thursday is a review of Wednesday night’s Ode to Doom in Manhattan and a video premiere for Last Rizla from Greece. Friday is a Thunderbird Divine track premiere from their new EP. That’s right. Not fucking around. Great week.

Yesterday I had two bands tell their PR they wanted to do premieres with this site. That was the nicest thing that happened to me this week. Easily.

A new Star Trek book came out. It’s TOS, kind of meh, but fine. I feel like a lot of those are just trying to recombine episodes from different episodes, throw in an alien threat, maybe retcon some dumb shit they did on tv in 1967 and make Kirk the hero over the course of 200-plus pages and you’re set. I’d love to write one of those books. I’d love to write any book. I just keep writing news posts.

I was supposed to interview Chris Goss yesterday for the Desertfest London programme. Well, the interview didn’t happen and this morning I got an email they’re pulling the plug on the programme, I assume for financial considerations. This is life right now. New realities, none of them remotely believable.

The new Forming the Void record is so good I want to shit a brick.

That’s all I’ve got.

Great and safe weekend. Don’t get the fucking plague. I’m gonna go count the minutes until dinner and read about Spock and the Andorian from that one episode of The Animated Series where Spock goes back in time and sees himself as a kid. Curiously no Michael Burnham there. Funny how that goes.

Blah blah blah.

Love always,
JJ Koczan

PS: FRM.

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Review & Full Album Premiere: Sorcia, Sorcia

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on March 10th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

sorcia sorcia

[Click play above to stream Sorcia’s self-titled debut in full. Album is out this Friday, March 13.]

Sorcia unveil a host of influences in their self-titled debut and just the same manage to declare who they are as artists. To be sure, they’re children of the 1990s, either demographically or spiritually. In the AliceinChains-via-AcidBath clean vocals of guitarist Neal De Atley, who complements with harsh, sludgy grunts and is met head on by bassist Jessica Brasch, whose low end rumble makes a highlight of the overdose tale “Nowhere But Up,” second of the seven tracks on the 45-minute offering after “In the Head” sets a stomp-laden tone as the leadoff.

Production by West Coast noise figurehead Tad Doyle (of TAD, Hog Molly and Brothers of the Sonic Cloth) assures that De Atley, Brasch and drummer Bryson Marcey come through with as much density and the impact is only heightened through a Jack Endino (producer for Nebula, Nirvana, Windhand, High on Fire, etc.) mastering job, but if Sorcia are keeping such esteemed company on their first album, it only underscores the awareness the Seattle trio have of their own intent as a project.

To be sure, the three-part turns of “Nowhere But Up,” which goes from its quieter lumbering verses to a louder part and then chugs into a faster chorus, are clear delineations that mark Sorcia as a first album, at least so far as one imagines them as being lines so clearly drawn here that will inevitably blur in the band’s future work, but but the clarity with which Sorcia present their material, both early on in “In the Head” and “Nowhere But Up” and in the also-circa-five-minutes-long “Coffin Nails” and “Sunburn” that follow on side A, as well as the longer stretches of side B’s nine-minute “Stars Collide,” and the two seven-minute cuts that follow, “Stoned Believer” and “Repression,” which continue to flesh out the gritty-but-not-totally-raw atmosphere of the proceedings as a whole. Even the stark A/B divide, with four tracks on the first and three on the second, feels purposeful on the part of the band.

And yes, that’s a strength. Perhaps more subtle than Brasch‘s bass tone in terms of what comes across when one puts on the digital version of the album and lets it run through, but one that will carry through multiple formats of an eventual physical release — LP, tape, even CD; certainly the Mike Hawkins cover art works for all of them. But from the Electric Wizard-esque opening riff of “In the Head” onward, the signaling being done across Sorcia‘s Sorcia is of a vision of sludge rock that neither wants to be trapped by the confines of genre nor completely separate from them.

The lead cut swings through its guttural hook en route to its eventual slowdown/speed-up finish and shift into “Nowhere But Up,” which brings in Brasch on vocals in the shouty, chugging chorus — somewhere between a shuffle, a chug, and being punched in the face — and there is a sense of flow to the proceedings, but the brashness of the faster parts speaks to some influence from earlier, not-afraid-to-be-called-stoner High on Fire, and as the subsequent “Coffin Nails” makes the album’s first of two mentions of a blood red sky with a second to follow later in “Stars Collide,” it also finds De Atley and Brasch coming together more fluidly on vocals.

sorcia

A call and response verse led off by the bassist singing met by the guitarist’s shouts would seem like a direct portend of things to come as regards further developing the dynamic and sense of arrangement Sorcia already bring to this first offering. The Goatsnake-ian figure that caps “Coffin Nails” serves as reminder that it and “Nowhere But Up” were both included on Sorcia‘s 2019 demo and so might have been earlier compositions, but to put a narrative to the album that places the first four tracks as being written first and the last three longer, more complex pieces later feels too convenient, even with a record as up front about its purposes as Sorcia is. It is, however, the kind of thing one might ask the band in an interview.

Whenever it was put together, “Sunburn” is both the centerpiece and a plod-laden highlight, holding to a mid-tempo push for most of its duration but picking up near the end and giving something of a streamlined impression with De Atley at the fore on vocals. The fact that Sorcia are so willing to change up their approach vocally speaks not only to multiple contributions to songwriting, but only more potential, and as “Stars Collide” offers a surprising bit of drift and Brasch takes her turn invoking the blood red sky lyrically, the emergent thud seems to hit even harder for the quiet spaciousness that it offsets.

They shift smoothly back and forth and find a roll to lock in as “Stars Collide” moves into its second half and opens to its solo, and a final slowdown brings back the crashing central riff delivered with a stage-style energy that resonates into the speedy beginning of the penultimate “Stoned Believer,” brazen in its speed with De Atley‘s throaty vocal grit moving into a cleaner approach effectively in mid-verse. A quieter stretch in the middle-third brings about an echoing guitar solo with Marcey driving a return to the full thrust in the last 90 seconds or so of the song and still finding room to shift back into the slower part before they’re done.

It’s a choice bit of songwriting that answers a question or two about room for complexity amid Sorcia‘s sludge, much like the track before it, and with a direct lead into the finale of “Repression,” the album finds its fluidity at just the right time, with “Repression” shoving toward an inevitable big finish that comes and is not overblown but gets the point across enough to justify rounding out with rumbling feedback. As it will no doubt be the first impression the band makes on a number of listeners, Sorcia functions very much as a first album should. It brings forward the basic foundations upon which the three-piece set about their aesthetic construction, and it showcases the potential for progression and several of the sonic avenues they might pursue going forward.

Prospective aspects aside, the meld of influences they play toward, whether native to their own Pacific Northwestern home or not, can already heard being consciously brought into their own context via craft, performance and the nascent De Atley/Brasch vocal dynamic. Being concrete-slab heavy doesn’t hurt either, and Sorcia most definitely is that.

Sorcia on Thee Facebooks

Sorcia on Instagram

Sorcia on Bandcamp

Sorcia website

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Sorcia to Release Self-Titled Debut March 13; Streaming “Nowhere But Up”

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 19th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

sorcia

A bit of the ol’ sludge-nasty coming from Seattle-ish three-piece Sorcia on their self-titled debut. Recorded by none less than Tad Frickin’ Doyle with mastering by Jack Goshdarn Endino and set to issue March 13 through the former’s Incineration Ceremony label, it’s a seven-track outing that word of which comes accompanied by the teaser cut “Nowhere But Up.” It’s easy enough to imagine in listening that the title speaks regarding the perspective of the album as a whole, but one doesn’t necessarily want to speculate based on one song, even if that song is a shouty roller with a sound that, if you cut it, would bleed mud.

More to follow on this one? Oh most definitely. I already signed on to stream the whole thing on March 10. Keep an eye/ear out for it.

PR wire news and tour dates below:

sorcia sorcia

Seattle’s SORCIA Reveal Debut Self-Titled Album Coming March 13th via Incineration Ceremony Records!

SORCIA hails from the Snoqualmie Valley in the Eastern outskirts of Seattle, Washington. After solidifying their lineup in 2018, SORCIA hit the ground running, releasing a two-song demo in January 2019. Combining blues-laden groovy riffs into the raw heaviness of doom metal with the added dynamic of dual vocals, they deliver their own method of Pacific Northwest heavy stoner sludge metal.

SORCIA entered Witch Ape Studio with Tad Doyle (Brothers of the Sonic Cloth, TAD) in June of 2019, to begin recording their debut full-length album; and completing the album with Jack Endino (High On Fire, Windhand, Nirvana) at the mastering helm.

So says SORCIA regarding their new album:
“Tad Doyle was an absolute pleasure to work with and did an incredible job capturing the essence of our sound. He gave us confidence and had a true understanding of our vision that was key in the bringing that vision to life. and it exceeded all our expectations. Having the legendary Jack Endino at the mastering helm was a complete honor and he did a fantastic job putting on the final touch. The creation of this album has been a long time coming and we are very proud and excited to finally share it. It is our tribute to the genre that inspired us and it embodies the sound we love.”

The debut full-length album ‘Sorcia’ will be available on March 13th, from Incineration Ceremony Recordings. With stunning cover art from Mike Hawkins, the new album will be released on CD, digital download, and streaming on most major outlets. Pre-order available soon…

Incineration Ceremony Recordings founder Tad Doyle had this to say:
“Sorcia is focused and has a vision of what they want to convey in their music which comes across with depth and power.”

‘Sorcia’ Tracklist:
01. In The Head
02. Nowhere But Up
03. Coffin Nails
04. Sunburn
05. Stars Collide
06. Stoned Believer
07. Repression

SORCIA Upcoming Live Dates:
Feb. 20 – Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey
Feb. 28 – Port Angeles, WA @ Little Devils Lunchbox
Mar. 06 – Portland, OR @ High Water Mark (Adv. Album Release)
Mar. 07 – Seattle, WA @ Slims Last Chance Saloon (Adv. Album Release)
Apr. 02 – Tacoma, WA @ The Plaid Pig
Apr. 03 – Duvall, WA @ Twin Dragon
Apr. 04 – Portland, OR @ Bunk
Apr. 14 – Seattle, WA @ Substation
May 20 – Seattle, WA @ Screwdriver Bar
Jun. 12 – Olympia, WA @ Cryptatropa

SORCIA
Neal De Atley – Guitar, Vocals
Jessica Brasch – Bass, Vocals
Bryson Marcey – Drums

https://www.facebook.com/SorciaBand/
https://www.instagram.com/sorciaband/
sorcia.bandcamp.com
https://sorciaband.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Incinerationceremony/
https://www.instagram.com/incineration.ceremony/
https://incineration-ceremony.bandcamp.com/
https://www.taddoyle.com/incineration-ceremony-recordings/

Sorcia, Sorcia (2020)

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