Night Beats to Release Outlaw R&B May 7; Stream “New Day”

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 9th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

By now it’s a tried and maybe-sometimes-true ethic: if you see something, say something. Well, I saw the new Night Beats video for “New Day” and I’m saying something. Mostly what I’m saying is it’s a cool bit of against-the-genre-grain songcraft, and also that there’s plenty of other Night Beats stuff to dig into until the new album, Outlaw R&B, arrives this Spring through Fuzz Club Records. Like four other albums. And singles. And splits. And so on.

Interesting to note that this is the second record to be posted about here to touch thematically on Californian wildfires — the other was Grayceon‘s latest — though I think it’s entirely possible they’re doing so in successive seasons. Nothing inspires like apocalypse! Plenty to go around, certainly.

I’ve got digging to do through the Night Beats back catalog ahead of hopefully getting to check out the new album, but in the meantime, here’s this from Fuzz Club:

night beats outlaw R&B

Night Beats – Outlaw R&B

On May 7th 2021, Night Beats – the Texas-born brainchild of Danny Lee Blackwell – will release their fifth full-length, ‘Outlaw R&B’, via Fuzz Club Records. The album arrives following the 2019 ‘Myth of A Man’ LP (produced by Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys and released by Heavenly Recordings) as well as last year’s ‘That’s All You Got’ 7”. Made during the height of the California wildfires (where Blackwell currently resides), rioting in the streets and a nation in lockdown, the raucous technicolour rock’n’roll of ‘Outlaw R&B’ is a call to rejoice in some sorely needed post-apocalyptic hedonism.

You can pre-order the album and stream the first single ‘New Day’ here:

Blackwell says of the album: “Outlaw R&B is music for the borderless, the free, the outcasts and the forgotten. The outlaw is the runner. Those whose minds aren’t sold by perfect pitch and clean fingernails. Through this medium you can escape the confines of mental feudalism and bask in the euphoric glow of psychedelic R&B.” Where the last Night Beats LP was a distinctly polished and soulful affair, ‘Outlaw R&B’ sees the band return to their natural habitat: riotous, acid-fried rock’n’roll to lose your head to.

“New Day is my postcard from purgatory. Upon going into lockdown I holed myself up with Akira Kurosawa movies and canned goods. This is the result of sleepless nights while hearing the world crumble outside my window. I sing of desperation and loss, while grinning in the face of an uncertain future.”

1. Stuck In The Morning
2. Revolution
3. New Day
4. Hell In Texas
5. Thorns
6. Never Look Back
7. Shadow
8. Crypt
9. Cream Johnny
10. Ticket
11. Holy Roller

Night Beats, “New Day” official video

Night Beats, Outlaw R&B (2020)

Tags: , , , ,

Holy Death Trio Sign to Ripple Music

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 5th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Holy Death Trio are the first signing to Ripple Music as Rob “Blasko” Nicholson — who in addition to being a bassist extraordinaire for the lines of Ozzy Osbourne, Rob Zombie, Drown (Hold on to the Hollow was fierce) and a slew of others, is also a manager and radio personality and enough other things to legitimately warrant an “etc.” — is working in collaboration with the label under the considerable title of ‘Executive Vice-President of A&R and Special Projects.’ That, my friends, would look awfully good on a business card. Good for Holy Death Trio, in any case. As regards backing, it would be way easy to do far worse.

The Austin-based trio’s video for “Bad Vibrations,” newly premiered, I seem to recall kicking around in December, but such is the way of things when a band gets signed. The track comes from the band’s self-titled EP, which has already been followed by two singles and according to the band’s Bandcamp page is the first half of their impending full-length debut. When that surfaces, it’ll be with Ripple‘s stamp of approval.

Good news all around, and a hell of a kickstart to the Blasko/Ripple collab. Details come from the PR wire:

holy death trio

Austin rock’n’rollers HOLY DEATH TRIO sign to Ripple Music as part of special series curated by Blasko; debut “Bad Vibrations” video!

Ripple Music announce the signing of Austin’s rock’n’roll purveyors HOLY DEATH TRIO for the release of their debut full-length later this year. The Texas trio is the first band to join the California based label as part of a special series of releases curated and executive produced by Blasko.

As Executive VP of A&R and Special Projects, Blasko will hand-curate and executive produce a series of special releases under the Ripple Music banner, spotlighting brand new talents from the underground. He brings a 30+ year career of experience as a musician and artist manager within the rock and metal underground scene to the table and will provide an unprecedented degree of guidance into each of these releases.

About signing HOLY DEATH TRIO, Blasko comments: “I am excited to announce our first signing under my new partnership with Ripple Music. From Austin, Texas: Holy Death Trio. These dudes are true ass busters and I am proud to be in their corner and introduce to the world the new breed of Rock and Roll!”


Borne out of a Mercury retrograde, the stars literally aligned when HOLY DEATH TRIO formed in 2016. These Central Texas natives sound like what would happen if Jimi Hendrix played with Black Sabbath and John Dwyer from Thee Of Sees set up his pedalboard. Suffice it to say, the ever shredding band knew they were onto something special from the first. Psychedelia rams into hard-hitting riffs when Holy Death Trio play, and they are determined to give their all. This is a group who love the grind, and whose newfound partnership with legendary Ozzy Osbourne bassist and artist manager Blasko as the premier signing to his new-found partnership at Ripple Music feeds ambitions that reach all the way up to the big Texas sky.

HOLY DEATH TRIO’s songs reflect an attitude of living each day like it’s your last and embracing self empowerment. The band take pride in staying fit and maintaining healthy habits so that when they hit the road, they can easily put in the work needed. A band who refuse to half-ass anything, Holy Death Trio demand the whole ass. This has paid off with appearances at numerous festival showcases and support slots for countless stoner rock titans. As Metal Injection once stated, “breathing life back into that heavy blues/stoner rock style, Holy Death Trio fuses the likes of early Rush, Black Sabbath, and Fu Manchu in the heart of the Texas.”

Now the band is focusing on releasing their debut full length, a veritable Holy Death Experience in collaboration with vaunted stoner label Ripple Music. The power trio is preparing a concept album that promises to act as a sacred trip through the sonic waves. With aspirations to tackle many of the heavy rock festivals that have come to dominate Austin over the years, HOLY DEATH TRIO are well aware that they live in a breeding ground for heavy music. It puts them in a prime position to take on the scene at large, and with their virtuoso guitar leads and crushing rhythms, you know they will.

In anticipation of their upcoming debut release, the band recently issued a series of digital singles, including the “Bad Vibrations” video and making for ‘The Holy Death Trio EP’, available at this location.

Holy Death Trio, “Bad Vibrations” official video

Tags: , , ,

Warlung Premiere “Sun Eater” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on February 4th, 2021 by JJ Koczan


If you’re going to do a departure, then depart. Warlung‘s third LP and second for Heavy Psych SoundsOptical Delusions (review here), came out in Oct. 2020 and “Sun Eater” closed side A. In so doing, it followed the classic heavy rock/metal stylings of “Phantasmagoria,” the bigger-riffed “The Scorpion in the Sand” and the sub-three-and-a-half-minute catchy run that was “Snake Eyes.” As such, its melody-forward drift, ethereal and semi-progressive unfolding was an immediate left-turn. You kept waiting for the track, which runs just under six minutes long, to burst out in volume and harder-impact fare.

Much to the credit of “Sun Eater” and the Houston-based Warlung as a whole, that never happens. Though the drums telegraph some tension in keeping the proceedings moving, “Sun Eater” nestles itself into that languid groove and remains there for the duration, giving guitarist/vocalists George Baba and Philip Bennett space to develop the richest melodies on Optical Delusions while the brotherly rhythm section of bassist Chris and drummer Ethan Tamez ensure the procession doesn’t fall apart or get lost in its own wash. The lyrics, as noted below, center around Egyptian mythology, and the subtle chant of the chorus, infectious as it is, carries that spirit of reverence as well.

The video was filmed by Bennett and features Baba walking around the desert and singing the song while the two went camping. According to the map, Big Bend National Park, which is on the Mexican border and toward the western side of Texas, is about eight and a half hours from Houston, so yeah, they were out there. Heck of a drive to shoot a video, even in such seeming spontaneous fashion, but you can’t argue with the backdrop Baba‘s walking around in. Some trippy effects on there and flowing rhythmic editing, and it works.

You’ll find the “Sun Eater” clip premiering below, followed by a few words from the band.

Please enjoy:

Warlung, “Sun Eater” official video premiere

“Sun Eater is about the ancient religion of Atenism. It is sung in the narrative of Pharaoh Akhenaten and describes his adoration of the solar disk…the Aten. Sun Eater was filmed out in Big Bend National park in the Texas desert. George and Phil took a trek to camp out and clear the mind, while out their they decided to film the scenery and take shots of George singing the song. After editing the video we decided to collaborate with Palantir Visuals where they took the kaleidoscope effect to new levels.”

Guitar/vox – George Baba
Guitar /vox – Philip Bennett
Bass – Chris Tamez
Drums – Ethan Tamez

Camera – Philip Bennett
Visual effects – Malichi Cull at Palantir Visuals

Warlung on Thee Facebooks

Warlung on Instagram

Warlung on Bandcamp

Heavy Psych Sounds on Bandcamp

Heavy Psych Sounds website

Heavy Psych Sounds on Thee Facebooks

Tags: , , , , ,

Stone Machine Electric Post “Free Thought” Official Live Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on February 1st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

stone machine electric

I know what you’re thinking: But wait, isn’t the version of this song on the album live?

Yes, it is, and that’s exactly the kind of head-screwery I’d expect from Texas two-piece Stone Machine Electric. Indeed, the version of “Free Thought” that appears on Dec. 2020’s just-cut-and-paste-it-because-you’ll-never-get-it-right-otherwise Desert Records long-player The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld (review here) is the same one that is being played in the video below, captured at the Freetown Boom Boom Room in Lafayette, Louisiana, shortly before live shows evaporated in the face of global pandemic — timing, as ever, is everything.

Accordingly, much as Stone Machine Electric blurred the line between a live and a studio album, they’re here doing the same to the line between live and official videos. Just like they’ve been blurring the lines between jams and songs, psychedelia and doom and jazz, and so on and so forth all throughout their tenure, now past the decade mark as it is. Some bands fit easy categorization. That’s a line of which Stone Machine Electric are solidly on the other side.

At nine minutes, “Free Thought” — presented in its entirety in the video — is the shortest track on The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld by a substantial margin. And if you haven’t had a chance to get acquainted with the record yet, it’s streaming in full below.

Have fun:

Stone Machine Electric, “Free Thought” official live video

Free Thought off the album The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld on Desert Records.

Recorded live at The Freetown Boom Boom Room in Lafayette, LA on 2/22/2020. Audio mastered by Kent Stump at Crystal Clear Sound in Dallas, TX.

Stone Machine Electric, The Inexplicable Vibrations of Frequencies Within the Cosmic Netherworld (2020)

Stone Machine Electric on Thee Facebooks

Stone Machine Electric on Instagram

Stone Machine Electric on Twitter

Stone Machine Electric on Bandcamp

Desert Records on Thee Facebooks

Desert Records on Bandcamp

Desert Records BigCartel store

Tags: , , , , ,

Cortége Premiere “Chasing Daylight (Part 1)” from Chasing Daylight

Posted in audiObelisk on January 29th, 2021 by JJ Koczan


Austin-based duo Cortége are set to release their new EP, Chasing Daylight, through Desert Records on Feb. 26. Comprised just of its two-part title-track, it’s their first offering through the label and the follow-up to 2019’s Capricorn (discussed here), which, like several of the band’s outings, skimmed the line between EP and full-length. Chasing Daylight, running 16-plus minutes, makes it somewhat easier.

It feels cliché almost to the point of rudeness to call Cortége‘s style “cinematic.” But there it is. Sorry. On a level of observational depth, you might as well call it “sound.” Cinematic is the point. I don’t think you break out the tubular bells unless you’re going for a particular kind of atmosphere, and Chasing Daylight indeed nails that atmosphere, with the first of its two parts shorter at 7:22, but reaching voluminous heights and almost minimalist lows in a sprawl that’s vaguely Western with the ringing guitars, but nonetheless carries an undercurrent of l0w-end synth that gives the central procession of the rhythm — CORTEGE CHASING DAYLIGHTslow, slow, slow in patient form from a band who’s done this before — a particularly foreboding feel that’s also vaguely futuristic.

The Morricone of Tomorrow, Today? Maybe, but there’s more going on than just that as “Chasing Daylight (Part 1)” surges to its finish and the opening melody of “Chasing Daylight (Part 2)” nearly veers into “Silent Night” as it unfurls. The synth, initially more forward, recedes behind the guitar line that in another context would recall Bell Witch, and Cortége make their way into an even more barren stretch, barely keeping time with bells and drums likeminded in their funereal vibe. The payoff is ambient, more drift than burst, and that’s just fine as the hypnotic aspect of all that lurch would feel cheap if they swapped in a big finish for its own sake. As it is, “Chasing Daylight,” the whole work, almost seems to ask for a third part, the brevity of the two pieces included here leaving room to be expanded upon.

Whether or not that’s something Cortége have in mind, of course I’ve no idea. You can stream “Chasing Daylight (Part 1)” below, and for being (roughly) half of the total outing, it gives a sense of what the two-piece are up to with the EP, and where they might head from here.

Please enjoy:


Post-Western, heavy ambient doom duo Cortége has signed to New Mexico’s Desert Records. The label will release the band’s new EP Chasing Daylight February 26, 2021 on CD and digital formats.

Recorded, mixed and mastered in the fall of 2020 with Jeff Henson (DUEL) at Red Nova Ranch in Austin, Texas, Chasing Daylight is a cinematic, chrome tinged portrait du temps for the end of the world as well as a musical foreshadowing of things to come. Lush arrangements wind through the familiar Cortége territories of drone, prog, doom, western and ambient soundscapes with a few surprises therein, including a guest appearance from Michael St. Claire on brass.

Album cover art comes courtesy of Steven Yoyada.

Cortége are:
Mike Swarbrick: Bass VI, Moog, Mellotron, Tubular Bells
Adrian Voorhies: Drums

Cortége on Thee Facebooks

Cortége on Instagram

Cortége on Bandcamp

Desert Records on Thee Facebooks

Desert Records on Instagram

Desert Records on Bandcamp

Tags: , , , , ,

Cactus Flowers Premiere “Do You Want Me?”; Announce Solace EP out March 12

Posted in audiObelisk, Whathaveyou on January 28th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

cactus flowers

There’s swagger to spare on the first single from Cactus Flowers‘ impending four-song EP, Solace. Set to issue on March 12 through the band’s own People.Parties.Places. imprint, the release finds the Houston trio digging into classic heavy rock with no shortage of fuzz, and as guitarist/vocalist Jessica Murillo carries the melodic sway of “Do You Want Me?,” the Sabbathian touch of the central riff is granted an edge of garage grit that suits its purpose well. As the second cut on the 17-minute EP, it follows the accordingly sharp “Razor Blade” in bringing to mind the ’70s-fueled-but-modernly-deliver’d energy of Electric Citizen or some of Ruby the Hatchet‘s less psych declarations, but the swing of Mark Carcamo‘s drumming gives Murillo plenty of space to lead the proceedings, and thus it is that marching orders are given.

Solace follows behind 2019’s Incantations long-player. It would seem to mark the arrival of bassist Paul Chavez (also Funeral Horse/Baby Bird) in place of Chris Dunaway, but I’m not actually sure who’s playing on these tracks, if either of them, since Chavez is listed as a live member but played on the prior LP. Accept the mystery. As the EP unfolds in 10″ fashion, two songs per side, “Do You Want Me?” gives way after an imagined platter-flip to “Swimming Through the Sea of Mercury,” a duly nodding four-and-a-half-minute fuzzbath, leading to the starts and stops of “Dirty Double Vision,” which backs the attitude more rampant in “Razor Blade” and “Do You Want Me?” with another showcase of  grit-toned classic push behind a catchy structure. You can’t argue when it works.

The cover art is wild and rife with symbols for the staring. You’ll find that here, followed by PR wire info and the track premiere at the bottom of the post.



Houston Psych Trio CACTUS FLOWERS Return with New EP | Stream Single ‘DO YOU WANT ME?’


Formed in 2014 by guitarist/songwriter Jessica Murillo; drummer Mark Carcamo and bassist Chris Dunaway, there’s no question that Cactus Flowers’s star has been in the ascension for quite some time.

Since the release of their beguiling debut album Incantations in 2019, the Houstonians have continued to conjure, inspire and craft an irresistible identity around lush cadences, pedal soaked riffs, and Murillo’s impassioned vocals.

This March, the trio returns to the fold with their stunning new four-song EP, Solace. Recorded during a period of global impasse brought about by the COVID pandemic, and after shelving plans for a Spring 2020 tour, the band holed up with producer John Griffin (Wild Moccasins, The Ton Tons, Television Personalities) to capture a heavier, more compound style of psych, lyrical gallantry, and hard rock strut.

Mastered by Heba Kadry (Battles, Blonde Redhead, Slowdive), featuring striking artwork by Jaime Zuverza (Sugar Candy Mountain, Golden Dawn Arkestra) and with Baby Birds/Funeral Horse’s Paul Chavez taking over from Dunaway on live duties, Solace is an incredibly impressive chapter in the band’s ongoing voyage.

Solace by Cactus Flowers will be released on the People.Parties.Places label digitally; on neon green cassette tape and 10″ vinyl on 12th March.

“Our new EP is an extension of Incantations in as much as those songs were written in hope of conjuring a feeling or emotion,” says Jessica Murillo. “Solace was written to provide comfort or consolation through story-telling and melodies. Matchmaking lush fuzz tones with tales of angst and far out fantasies, we want it to be your next favourite soundtrack on good or bad days.”

Track Listing
1. Razor Blade
2. Do You Want Me?
3. Swimming Through the Sea of Mercury
4. Dirty Double Vision

Release Date: 12/03/2021
Formats: Cassette Tape/10″ Vinyl/Digital

Cactus Flowers:
Jessica A. Murillo: vocals, guitar
Mark Carcamo: drums
Paul Chavez: bass

Tags: , , , , ,

Liquid Sound Company Post “Mahayuga” Video; New Album Coming Soon

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 13th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

liquid sound company

New Liquid Sound Company does not happen every day. The Texas-based psychedelicatitians have trickled out few songs on Bandcamp over the last few years, most notably up till now the single “Black Light Corridor” that made its way through the muck of an otherwise-distracted May 2020 to shine with lysergic tales of turning to custard and potential defenestration. A follow-up to that track arrives with the new video “Mahayuga” — anyone looking to dive down a rabbit-hole of Hindu cosmology can go ahead and Google that — and though the track in question only runs about four and a half minutes, it does indeed seem to stretch time, classic sitar psych interweaving with molten rhythm and guitar effects purveyed by John Perez, best known for his work as founding guitarist of doom metallers Solitude Aeturnus.

The prospect of a new album, which will be self-released and titled as per the band as Psychoactive Songs for the Psoul, from the Liquid Sound Company is welcome, to say the least. Their Bandcamp loaded up in 2017 and there’s a treasure trove of shroomy goodness to be had there, but the discography it draws from dates back as far as the mid ’90s with the release of the band’s debut album, Exploring the Psychedelic, in 1996 through Perez‘s own Brainticket Records. They’d later hook up with respected purveyor Nasoni Records as one of the few American acts ever to release through the Berlin-based label — fellow Texans Wo Fat are another — for 2002’s Inside the Acid Temple, and keeping their one-per-decade track record going, a third LP, Acid Music for Acid People, would arrive in 2011, also through Nasoni and Rockadrome in the US.

You see what I mean with “not every day,” but if you believe in due, Liquid Sound Company are due. 2021 will mark a decade since Acid Music for Acid People, and “Black Light Corridor” and “Mahayuga” both make it plain that their cosmic luster has faded not a bit. You’ll hear some edge of classic doom amid the riffs that emerge, but it’s all about the swirl here and there’s plenty of that to go around. And around. And around. You get the idea.

With the hope of more to come, enjoy:

Liquid Sound Company, “Mahayuga” official video

I’ve been working with my band members for some time on some new PSYCHEDELIA! Take 5 minutes out of your day, sit back relax and take a peek into the new Liquid Sound Company album with a new track – Mahayuga. From our upcoming 2021 release, Psychoactive Songs For The Psoul on the bands own LSR label! Take an exotic mind melting journey to pleasure and mystic visions. Features sitar by Shaun Hyder of long running U.K. eastern psych band Saddar Bazaar! Here’s a link to the official video on our Youtube channel;

Liquid Sound Company is:
John Perez – guitars, vocals
Mark Cook – Warr guitar, 12 string, analog synth
Jason Spradlin – drums, keyboards
Allan “Skip” Wise – vocals, lyrics
Ron McCain – keyboards

Liquid Sound Company, “Black Light Corridor”

Liquid Sound Company on Thee Facebooks

Liquid Sound Company on Bandcamp

Liquid Sound Company on YouTube

Tags: , , , , ,

R.I.P. Paul DeLeon of Las Cruces

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 12th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Condolences to the family, friends and bandmates of Las Cruces drummer Paul DeLeon, who passed away on Jan. 6 after contracting COVID-19. The band was most recently heard from in 2016 when they announced the return of original vocalist Mark Zamarron to the fold, but after releasing 2010’s Dusk (review here) and signing to Ripple Music in 2014 for a fourth full-length to be titled Altar of the Seven Sorrows, the San Antonio group would continue to play shows and fests around Texas but the album had yet to materialize. What their plans might be now isn’t known.

Having been fortunate enough to see DeLeon play live, I remember him as loving being behind that kit and bringing classic metal flair to Las Cruces’ thoroughly doomed style. Founding guitarist George Trevino had words on his friend and bandmate’s passing, as per the PR wire:

paul deleon las cruces

LAS CRUCES Drummer PAUL DE LEON has passed away to Covid on January 6th. LAS CRUCES guitarist, George Trevino, wrote on the band’s Facebook page, “This is the hardest post I’ve had to post on this page but I’m saddened to report the passing of our drummer and brother Paul De Leon. He passed away today after battling Covid. Rest In Peace my dear friend and Metal Brother. You will never be forgotten. We love you. RIP.”

He later added: “Have to say good bye to one of my best friends… He was my friend for 30 years and musical colleague for 15. I will always remember our times on the road and that wonderful laughter and love of life you had my friend. I don’t know if I’ll ever get over this one. I hate Covid for taking you like this. While I try to be very private about how I feel and stuff I cannot deny the love I have for you my Brother. Rest in Peace Paul. I love you.”

Guitarist George Trevino founded LAS CRUCES in 1994 in San Antonio, Texas and has since made his mark across The Lone Star State and the American doom-metal scene.

Las Cruces, “Cocaine Wizard Woman” official video

Tags: , , ,