Stoned Jesus Enter the Studio; “Bright Like the Morning” Acoustic Video Posted

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

stoned jesus

Kyiv heavy forerunners Stoned Jesus have, as of today, begun the recording process for their next full-length. What’s being billed thus far only as the hashtag #stjvth will serve as the follow-up to 2019’s Pilgrims (review here), and likely not see release until sometime in the first half of 2022. It could be May, folks. It could be September for all I know, but assuming everything goes to plan, who doesn’t enjoy a bit of Stoned Jesus in Springtime?

The trio played all of one show last year, but to look at their upcoming schedule they’re clearly looking to make up for lost time. It saddens me — sincerely, I mean this — that I’ve never seen the band live. They were confirmed for Desertfest New York 2020, and, well, poof went that idea. They’re on fest bills now in their native Ukraine as well as Switzerland, which is certainly a start, Will the new Stoned Jesus record be done by the time those take place? Certainly stranger things have happened.

Two videos have been posted — one from each set — from the aforementioned 2020 gig. The plugged-in “Apathy” and “Bright Like the Morning” from their acoustic set, which just came out. Originally featured on 2012’s Seven Thunders Roar (review here), the song should be readily familiar to anyone who’s dug into that record owing to its bending the algorithms that rule our lives and listening habits to its will over the last nine years. Someone had to do it, we’re just lucky Stoned Jesus don’t suck.

And that latter point is a big part of why I’m looking forward to their next album. Bet it doesn’t sound like the last one, but also bet it’s still cool. Adventures in songwriting with Igor & Co.

Enjoy the clip:

Stoned Jesus, “Bright Like the Morning” acoustic live 2020

Igor Sidorenko on “Bright Like the Morning”:

“We’ve always been very skeptical about bands doing unplugged versions of their tracks, but the funny thing with like 80% of StJ numbers is that I actually wrote them on the acoustic guitar and they are SONGS! So playing a handful of them last year in stripped down variant felt really natural and lotta fun. This particular “Bright Like the Morning” is currently our favorite version of the track!”

Acoustics September 1, Kyiv Tickets: https://concert.ua/uk/event/stoned-jesus

Filmed by
Aleksandr Sinkin
Dmytro Burko
Sergii Burko

Edited by
Sergii Sliusar

Thanks to
Eugene Kibets and HMG
Vlad Lyashenko and InshaMuzyka

Support us on Patreon:
https://www.patreon.com/igorfromstj

Summer 2021 Festivals:
30.07 – Faine Misto (Ternopil, UA)
8.08 – PALP festival (Switzerland)
14.08 – tba, UA
28-29.08 – ????? Family (Kharkiv, UA)

Stoned Jesus is:
Igor Sydorenko – Vocals & Guitars
Serhij Sljussar – Bass
Dmytro Zinchenko – Drums

Stoned Jesus, “Apathy” live 2020

Stoned Jesus store

Stoned Jesus on Twitter

Stoned Jesus on Facebook

Stoned Jesus on Instagram

Napalm Records website

Napalm Records on Facebook

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Quarterly Review: Papir, Kosmodemonic, Steve Von Till, Sex Blender, Déhà, Thunder Horse, Rebreather, Melmak, Astral Magic, Crypt Monarch

Posted in Reviews on July 6th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

the-obelisk-fall-2016-quarterly-review

Day two already, huh? It’s a holiday week here in the States, which means people are on vacation or have at least enjoyed a long weekend hopefully without blowing any body parts off with fireworks or whatnot. For me, I prefer the day on rather than the day off, so we proceeded as normal yesterday in beginning the Quarterly Review. “We now return to our regularly scheduled,” and so on.

There’s a lot of good stuff here, as one would hope, and since we’re still basically at the start of this doublewide edition of the Quarterly Review — 10 down, 90 to go — I won’t delay further. Thanks for reading.

Quarterly Review #11-20:

Papir, Jams

papir jams

Two sessions, three days apart, three pieces from each, resulting in six tracks running just about 80 minutes that Papir are only within their rights to have titled simply as Jams. With this outing, the Copenhagen-based psychedelic trio present their process at its most nakedly exploratory. I don’t know if they had any parts pre-planned when they went into the studio, but the record brims with spontaneity, drums jazzing out behind shimmering guitar and steadily grooving basslines. Effects are prevalent and add to the spaciousness, and the sessions from whence these songs came, whether it’s the key-led four-minute “20.01.2020 #2” or the 20-minute opener “17.01.2020 #1” — all tracks sharing the same date-and-number format as regards titles — feel vibrant and fluid in a way that goes beyond even the hazy hypnotics of “20.01.2020 #3.” Papir‘s instrumental dynamic is of course a huge part of what they do anyway, but to hear their chemistry come through in freer fashion as it does here can only be refreshing. I hope they do more like this.

Papir on Facebook

Stickman Records website

 

Kosmodemonic, Liminal Light

Kosmodemonic Liminal Light

Brooklyn outfit Kosmodemonic exist almost exclusively within genre border regions. Their second album, Liminal Light, fosters an approach that’s too considered not to be called progressive, but that owes as much to the cosmic doom of YOB as to black metal as to noise rock as to Voivod as to any number of other various ores in the metallic sphere. In their sprinting moments or in the consuming dark grandeur of centerpiece “Ipomoea,” they are pointedly individual, and cuts like “Drown in Drone” and the later slammer “Brown Crown” owe much to sheer impact as to the cerebral underpinnings of their angularity. Liminal Light is vicious but methodical, and feels executed with a firm desire to catch the audience sleeping and then blindside them with a change, be it in moving from one song to another or within one song itself, like when the penultimate “Chains of Goddess Grove” rears back from its lurching movement and spews thrashier fire in its final minute. Put these moments together and you get a record that challenges on multiple levels and is unflinchingly worth the effort of close engagement.

Kosmodemonic on Facebook

Transylvanian Tapes on Bandcamp

 

Steve Von Till, A Deep Voiceless Wilderness

Steve Von Till A Deep Voiceless Wilderness

The sixth solo offering from Neurosis guitarist/vocalist Steve Von Till is a first for being completely instrumental. The narrative — blessings and peace upon it — goes that Von Till wrote the music for 2020’s No Wilderness Deep Enough (review here) late during jetlagged nights alone on his wife’s family’s property in Germany, where her family has lived for 500 years, only to later be convinced by producer Randall Dunn to write lyrics and record vocals for the songs. A Deep Voiceless Wilderness, as the title hints, pulls those vocals back out of these re-named pieces, allowing elements like the quiet textures of keyboard and piano, horns and mellotrons to shine through in atmospheric fashion, layers of drone intertwining in mostly peaceful fashion. It is the least guitar-based record Von Till has ever done, and allows for a new kind of minimalism to surface along with an immersive melodic hum. Subdued, meditative, exploratory, kind of wonderful.

Steve Von Till website

Neurot Recordings store

 

Sex Blender, Studio Session I

Sex Blender Studio Session I

Based in Lviv, Ukraine, instrumentalist krautrock bizarros Sex Blender have two full-lengths behind them, and Studio Session I takes the consumingly fuzzed “Diver” from 2018’s Hormonizer and three cuts from 2020’s The Second Coming and turns them into a stirring 44-minute set captured on video for a livestream. Reportedly some of the arrangements are different, as will certainly happen, but as someone being introduced to the band through this material, it’s easy to be struck by the palpable sense of glee with which Sex Blender present their songs. “Crimson Master” is the shortest of the bunch at just over six minutes — it’s the only one under 11 — but even there, the manipulated keyboard sounds, drum fluidity and undercurrent of rumbling distortion push Sex Blender into a place that’s neither doom nor prog but draws from both, crawling where the subsequent “Rave Spritz” can’t help but bounce with its motorik drums and intertwined synth lines. May just be a live session, but they shine all the same.

Sex Blender on Facebook

Drone Rock Records website

 

Déhà, Cruel Words

Déhà Cruel Words

Déhà‘s third long-player Cruel Words was originally issued in 2019 and is seeing a first vinyl pressing on Burning World Records. The Brussels solo outfit has released no fewer than 17 other full-length outings — possibly more, depending on what counts as what — in the two years since these songs initially surfaced, but, well, one has to start someplace. The 2LP runs 75 minutes and includes bonus tracks — an acoustic version of opener “I Am Mine to Break,” a cover of The Gathering‘s “Saturnine” and the piano-into-post-metal “Comfort Me II” — but the highlights are on the album itself, such as the make-Amenra-blush 12-minute crux of “Dead Butterflies,” wherein a lung-crushing weight is given patient drama through its prominent keyboard layers, or the goth early going of “Pain is a Wasteland,” which seems to brood until it finally can’t take it anymore and bashes its head (and yours) into the wall. Surprisingly methodical for the manic pace at which Déhà (né Olmo Lipani) works, it makes artistry of its arrangement as well as performance and is willfully overwhelming, but engaging in that.

Déhà on Facebook

Burning World Records website

 

Thunder Horse, Chosen One

Thunder Horse Chosen One

Big riffs, big grooves, big hooks, Thunder Horse‘s second long-player, Chosen One, sees the San Antonio, Texas, outfit inherit some aspects from the members’ past outfits, whether it’s the semi-industrial vocal style of Stephen Bishop on “Among the Dead” or the classically shredding solo work of Todd Connally. With Dave Crow on bass and Jason “Shakes” West on drums, Thunder Horse elbow their way into a nod quickly on Chosen One and hold their ground decisively, with Dehumanizer-esque tones and flourish of keys throughout that closes in lead position on the outro “Remembrance” in complement to the strumming, whistling “Texas” a short while earlier. Even when they shuffle, as on the second half of “Song for the Ferryman,” Thunder Horse do it heavy, and as they did with their 2018 self-titled debut (review here), they make it hard to argue, either with the atmosphere or the sheer lumber of their output. An easy record to dig for the converted.

Thunder Horse on Facebook

Ripple Music website

 

Rebreather, Pets / Orange Crush

Rebreather Pets Orange Crush

Heads up children of — or children of children of — the 1990s, as Youngstown, Ohio’s Rebreather effectively reinterpret and heavy up two of that decade’s catchiest hooks in Porno for Pyros‘ “Pets” and R.E.M.‘s “Orange Crush.” Taking songs that, if they ever left your head from rock radio, will certainly be right back in there now, and trying to put their own spin on them is ambitious, but Rebreather have no trouble slowing down the already kinda languid “Pets” or emphasizing the repetitive urgency of “Orange Crush,” and the tonal weight they bring to both honors the original versions as well as who Rebreather are as a band, while showcasing the band’s heretofore undervalued melodies, with call and response vocal lines in both cuts nodding to their sludge/noise rock roots while moving forward from there. They chose the songs well, if nothing else, and though it’s only about 10 minutes between the two cuts, as the first new Rebeather material since their 2018 self-titled EP (discussed here), I’ll take the two covers happily.

Rebreather on Facebook

Aqualamb Records website

 

Melmak, Down the Underground

Melmak Down the Underground

Spanish duo Melmak — guitarist/vocalist Jonan Etxebarria and drummer/vocalist Igor Etxebarria — offer an awaited follow-up to their 2016 long-player Prehistorical (review here) and demonstrate immediately that five years has not dulled their aggressive tendencies. Opener “Black Room” is a minute-long grindfest, and though “Scum” finds its way into a sludgy groove, it’s not far behind. “Poser” starts out as a piano ballad but turns to its own crushing roll, while “The Scene” rumbles out its lurch, “You Really Don’t Care” samples a crying baby over a sad piano line and “Ass Kisser” offers knee-to-the-face bruiser riffing topped with echoing gutturalism that carries the intensity into the seven-minute, more spacious “Jaundiced,” which gives itself over to extremity in its second half as well, and the closing noise wash of “The Crew.” What we learn from all this is it would seem Melmak find the heavy underground wanting in violent terms. They answer that call in bludgeoning fashion.

Melmak on Facebook

Melmak on Bandcamp

 

Astral Magic, Visions of Infinity

Astral Magic Visions of Infinity

Ostensibly a solo-project from Dark Sun bassist Santtu Laakso, Astral Magic‘s debut LP, Visions of Infinity, features contributions from guitarist Martin Weaver (Wicked Lady, Doctors of Space) and Scott “Dr. Space” Heller (Doctors of Space, Øresund Space Collective), as well as Samuli Sailo on ukulele, and has been mixed and mastered and released by Heller, so perhaps the plot thickens as regards just how much of band it is. Nonetheless, Astral Magic have all the cosmos to work with, so there’s plenty of room for everybody, as Visions of Infinity harnesses classic Hawkwindian space rock and is unafraid to add droning mysticism to the ever-outward procession on “Ancient Mysteries” or “Onboard the Spaceship,” to grow playful on “I Was Abducted” or bask in cosmic serenity on “Winds of Time” and “Wizards.” Off we go, into the greater reaches of “out there.” It’s a fun ride.

Astral Magic on Facebook

Space Rock Productions website

 

Crypt Monarch, The Necronaut

Crypt Monarch The Necronaut

Costa Rican trio Crypt Monarch offer their debut full-length in the form of the three-song/36-minute The Necronaut, the sound of which makes the claim on the part of the band — bassist/vocalist Christopher De Haan, guitarist Jose Rodriguez, drummer/vocalist J.C. Zuñiga — that it was made live in a cabin in the woods easy enough to believe. Though mixed and mastered, the 15-minute opener “Morning Star Through Skull” (15:41) and ensuing rollers “Rex Meridionalis” (10:12) and “Aglaphotis” (10:08) maintain a vigilant rawness, laced with noise even as De Haan and Zuñiga come together vocally on the latter, clean singing and gurgles alike. It is stoner metal taken to a logical and not entirely unfamiliar extreme, but the murk in which Crypt Monarch revel is dense and easy to get lost within. This, more than any single riff or lumbering groove, speaks to the success of the band’s intention in crafting the record. There is no clearly marked exit.

Crypt Monarch on Facebook

Electric Valley Records website

 

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Stoned Jesus & Somali Yacht Club to Tour Australia and New Zealand This Fall

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 18th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

I’ll go to this. Hey, Stoned Jesus and Somali Yacht Club — you got room for one more in the van? Mind if I tag along? It’s been nearly a year since the last time I caught a gig — snuck one outdoor show in last summer, I did — so I’m as due as anybody, and while there’s stuff I miss about live music I miss and stuff I don’t — the music and nearly everything else, respectively — 12 dates on the road plus a four-day break for sightseeing seems like just the kind of thing to cure what ails. Also that’s happening in Australia and New Zealand. I’ll go. Is there a grant application I can fill out somewhere?

Gonna go out on a limb and guess that’s a hard “no,” but hey, it’s worth a shot. These dates were first scheduled for now-ish, and if you’re in that part of the world and have tickets already, hold onto ’em (or, you know, don’t delete the email or whatever) because they’re still good for the rebooked shows. All are presented through Your Mate Bookings and check out Wo Fest making an appearance near the end of the tour. You have to appreciate that.

Info snagged from social media:

stoned jesus somali yacht club tour

Stoned Jesus and Somali Yacht Club – Australia & New Zealand Tour

World renowned Stoner Doom trio “Stoned Jesus”; will finally make their way to Australia and New Zealand in Nov. 2021 and they are bringing their Psychedelic Pals “Somali Yacht Club” with them.

Stoned Jesus is just one of those bands, if you know Stoner Rock, well you know Stoned Jesus. The trio from Kyiv created their sound in 2009 and have released four albums and multiple EPs, singles and splits since; making them one of the most popular bands in the European underground rock/metal scenes to date. Bringing together their Sabbath-esque groove and modern doom tones; the trio make mountains out of their riffs and are responsible for the ever-growing community of stoner rock and doom metal. The single “I’m the mountain” released in 2012 quickly became one of the most respected songs in underground rock around the globe.

The Stoner Doom trio then went on to headline and play some of the biggest festivals across Europe including Desertfest (Berlin, Belgium and London) along with which has now landed them on this much anticipated tour leg of their tenth anniversary tour of Australia and New Zealand. Celebrating their little jubilee, the Ukranian trio will play a unique setlist with both classic cuts and tracks from their most recent Prog-influenced critically acclaimed “Pilgrims” album.

Somali Yacht Club have been making waves for a few years right across Europe via their beautiful blend of Post/Psychedelic Doom Rock and Shoegaze; and just after three albums they have penetrated the world market with their latest offering “The Sea” clicking over to 1.1 million views on youtube.

The Ukranian trio have shared the stage and toured with some of the most respected Stoner/Psych Rocks bands in the world including My Sleeping Karma, Naxatras, Colour Haze, Elder, Wo Fat and Sasquatch; hitting the best of the best festivals Keep it low, Streetmode, Stoned from the Underground and Desertfest (Berlin)

The two groups will hit Scarborough, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Sydney, Wollongong, Canberra, Auckland (NZ), Wellington (NZ) and headline this years WO FEST 2020 at The Bendigo Hotel in Collingwood and Armageddoom 6 at Civic Hotel in Inglewood.

Friday 5/11/2021 Indian Ocean Hotel, Scarborough
Saturday 6/11/2021 Lucy’s Love Shack, Perth ARMAGEDDOOM 6
Monday 8/11/2021 Whammy Bar, Auckland
Tuesday 9/11/2021 Valhalla, Wellington
Thursday 11/11/2021 The Flamin’ Galah, Brisbane
Friday 12/11/2021 The Vanguard, Newtown
Saturday 13/11/2021 Baroque Room, Katoomba
Wednesday 17/11/2021 La La La’s, Wollongong
Thursday 18/11/2021 TBA, Canberra
Friday 19/11/2021 Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy
Saturday 20/11/2021 Bendigo Hotel, Collingwood WO FEST
Sunday 21/11/2021 Crown and Anchor, Adelaide

All tickets currently held are 100% valid for the new dates and if you have moved in the meantime, we can arrange a ticket transfer to your new local venue (Get in touch via email yourmatebookings@gmail.com)

All new tickets can be purchased from: https://www.yourmatebookings.com/

Stoned Jesus is:
Igor Sydorenko – Vocals & Guitars
Serhij Sljussar – Bass
Dmytro Zinchenko – Drums

Somali Yacht Club:
Ihor – guitar, vocals, keys
Artur – bass
Oleksa – drums

https://www.facebook.com/stonedjesusband
https://www.instagram.com/stonedjesusband/
http://stonedjesus.bandcamp.com/
www.napalmrecords.com
www.facebook.com/napalmrecords

http://facebook.com/Somaliyachtclub
http://somaliyachtclub.bandcamp.com
http://instagram.com/somaliyachtclub
https://www.facebook.com/seasonofmistofficial
http://www.season-of-mist.com/

https://www.facebook.com/yourmatebookings/
https://instagram.com/yourmatebookings
https://www.yourmatebookings.com/

Somali Yacht Club, The Sea (2018)

Stoned Jesus, Live at Green Theatre

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Quarterly Review: DVNE, Wowod, Trace Amount, Fuzzcrafter, Pine Ridge, Watchman, Bomg, White Void, Day of the Jackal, Green Druid

Posted in Reviews on April 1st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-spring-2019

Oh, hello there. Don’t mind me. I’m just here, reviewing another 10 records today. I did it yesterday too. I’ll do it again tomorrow. No big deal. It’s Quarterly Review time. You know how it goes.

Crazy day yesterday, crazy day today, but I’m in that mode where I kind of feel like I can make this go as long as I want. Next Monday? Why not? Other than the fact that I have something else slated, I can’t think of a reason. Fortunately, having something else slated is enough of one. Ha. Let’s go.

Quarterly Review #31-40:

DVNE, Etemen Ænka

dvne Etemen Ænka

It’s like Scotland’s DVNE threw all of modern heavy metal into a blender and hit “cohesive.” Etemen Ænka‘s lofty ambitions are matched indeed by the cohesion of the band’s craft, the professionalism of their presentation, and the scope of their second album’s 10 component tracks, whether that’s in the use of synth throughout “Towers” or the dreamy post-rock aside in “Omega Severer,” the massive riffing used as a tool not a crutch in “Court of the Matriarch,” closer “Satuya” and elsewhere, and even the interlude-y pieces “Weighing of the Heart,” “Adraeden” and the folkish “Asphodel” that leads into the finale. DVNE have made themselves into the band you wish Isis became. Also the band you wish Mastodon became. And probably six or seven others. And while Etemen Ænka is certainly not without prog-styled indulgence, there is no taking away from the significant accomplishment these songs represent for them as a group putting out their first release on Metal Blade. It’ll be too clean for some ears, but the tradeoff for that is the abiding sense of poise with which DVNE deliver the songs. This will be on my year-end list, and I won’t be the only one.

DVNE on Thee Facebooks

Metal Blade Records website

 

Wowod, Yarost’ I Proshchenie

Wowod Yarost I Proshchenie

Beginning with its longest track (immediate points) in the 11-minute “Rekviem,” Yarost’ I Proshchenie is the third full-length from St. Petersburg’s Wowod, and its sudden surge from ‘unfold’ to ‘onslaught’ is a legitimate blindside. They hypnotize you then push you down a flight of stairs as death growls, echoing guitar lines and steady post-metallic drum and bass hold the line rhythmically. This sense of disconnect, ultimately, leads to a place of soaring melody and wash, but that feeling of moving from one place to another is very much the core of what Wowod do throughout the rest of the album that follows. “Tanec Yarosti” is a sub-three-minute blaster, while “Proshschenie” lumbers and crashes through its first half en route to a lush soundscape in its second, rounding out side A. I don’t care what genre “Zhazhda” is, it rules, and launches side B with rampaging momentum, leading to the slow, semi-industrial drag of “Chornaya Zemlya,” the harsh thrust of “Zov Tysyachi Nozhey” and, finally, dizzyingly, the six-minute closer “Top’,” which echoes cavernous and could just as easily have been called “Bottom.” Beautiful brutality.

Wowod on Thee Facebooks

Church Road Records on Bandcamp

 

Trace Amount, Endless Render

trace amount endless render

The chaos of last year is writ large in the late-2020 Endless Render EP from Brooklyn-based solo industrial outfit Trace Amount. The project headed by Brandon Gallagher (ex-Old Wounds) engages with harsh noise and heavy beatmaking, injecting short pieces like “Pop Up Morgues” with a duly dystopian atmosphere. Billy Rymer (The Dillinger Escape Plan, etc.) guests on drums for opener “Processed Violence (in 480P)” and the mminute-long “Seance Stimulant,” but it’s in the procession of the final three tracks — the aforementioned “Pop Up Morgues,” as well as “S.U.R.V.I.V.A.L.” and “Easter Sunday” — that Gallagher makes his most vivid portrayals. His work is evocative and resonant in its isolated feel, opaque like staring into an uncertain future but not without some semblance of hope in its resolution. Or maybe that’s the dream and the dance-party decay of “Dreaming in Displacement” is the reality. One way or the other, I’m looking forward to what Trace Amount does when it comes to a debut album.

Trace Amount on Thee Facebooks

Trace Amount on Bandcamp

 

Fuzzcrafter, C-D

Fuzzcrafter C D

French instrumentalists Fuzzcrafter issued C-D in October 2020 as a clear answer/complement to 2016’s A-B, even unto its Jo Riou cover art, which replaces the desert-and-fuzz-pedal of the first offering with a forest-and-pedal here. The six works that make up the 41-minute affair are likewise grown, able to affect a sense of lushness around the leading-the-way riffage in extended cuts “C2” (13:13) and the psychedelic back half of “D2” (13:18), working in funk-via-prog basslines (see also the wah guitar starting “D1” for more funk) over solid drums without getting any more lost than they want to be in any particular movement. In those songs and elsewhere, Fuzzcrafter make no attempt to hide the fact that they’re a riff-based band, but the acoustic side-finales in “C3” (which also features Rhodes piano) and “D3,” though shorter, reinforce both the structural symmetry of the mirrored sides as a whole and a feeling of breadth that is injected elsewhere in likewise organic fashion. They’re not changing the world and they’re not trying to, but there’s a mark being left here sound-wise and it’s enough to wonder what might be in store for the inevitable E-F.

Fuzzcrafter on Thee Facebooks

Fuzzcrafter on Bandcamp

 

Pine Ridge, Can’t Deny

Pine Ridge Can't Deny

Pine Ridge‘s second album, Can’t Deny, finds the Russian four/five-piece working in textures of keys and organ for a bluesier feel to tracks like the post-intro opening title-cut and the classic feeling later “Genesis.” Songwriting is straightforward, vocals gritty but well attended with backing arrangements, and the take on “Wayfaring Stranger” that ends the record’s first half conjures enough of a revivalist spirit to add to the atmosphere overall. The four tracks that follow — “Genesis,” “Runaway,” “Sons of Nothing” and “Those Days” — featured as well on 2019’s Sons of Nothing EP, but are consistent in groove and “Sons of Nothing” proves well placed to serve as an energetic apex of Can’t Deny ahead of “Those Days,” which starts quiet before bursting to life with last-minute electricity. A clear production emphasizes hooks and craft, and though I’ll grant I don’t know much about Siberia’s heavy rock scene, Pine Ridge ably work within the tenets of style while offering marked quality of songwriting and performance. That’s enough to ask from anywhere.

Pine Ridge on Thee Facebooks

Karma Conspiracy website

 

Watchman, Behold a Pale Horse

watchman behold a pale horse

Plain in its love for Sabbath-minded riffing and heavy Americana roll, “Bowls of Wrath” opens the three-song Dec. 2020 debut EP, Behold a Pale Horse, from Indiana-based solo-project Watchman, and the impression is immediate. With well-mixed cascades of organ and steadily nodding guitar, bass, drums and distorted, howling vocals, there is both a lack of pretense and an individualized take on genre happening at once. The EP works longest to shortest, with “Wormwood” building up from sparse guitar to far-back groove using negative space in the sound to bolster “Planet Caravan”-ish watery verses and emphasize the relative largesse of the track preceding as well as “The Second Death,” which follows. That closer is a quick four minutes that’s slow in tempo, but the lead-line cast overtop the mega-fuzzed central riff is effective in creating a current to carry the listener from one bank of the lake of fire to the other. In 15 minutes, multi-instrumentalist/vocalist/producer Roy Waterford serves notice of intention for a forthcoming debut LP to be titled Doom of Babylon, and it is notice worth heeding.

Watchman on Instagram

Watchman on Bandcamp

 

Bomg, Peregrination

bomg peregrination

Bomg‘s Peregrination isn’t necessarily extreme the way one thinks of death or black metal as extreme styles of heavy metal, but is extreme just the same in terms of pushing to the outer limits of the aesthetics involved. The album’s four track, “Electron” (38:12), “Perpetuum” (39:10), “Paradigm” (37:17) and “Emanation” (37:49), could each consume a full 12″ LP on their own, and presented digitally one into the next, they are a tremendous, willfully unmanageable two-and-a-half-hour deep-dive into raw blowout dark psychedelic doom. The harsh rumble and noise in “Perpetuum” some 28 minutes on sounds as though the Ukrainian outfit have climbed the mountains of madness, and there is precious little clarity to be found in “Paradigm” or “Emanation” subsequent as they continue to hammer the spike of their manifestations deeper into the consciousness of the listener. From “Electron” onward, the self-recording Kyiv trio embark on this overwhelming journey into the unknown, and they don’t so much invite you along as unveil the devastating consequences of having made the trip. Righteously off-putting.

Bomg on Thee Facebooks

Robustfellow Productions on Bandcamp

 

White Void, Anti

white void anti

As much as something can fly under the radar and be a Nuclear Blast release, I’m more surprised by the hype I haven’t heard surrounding White Void‘s debut album, Anti. Pulling together influences from progressive European-style heavy rock, classic metal, cult organ, New Wave melodies and a generally against-grain individualism, it is striking in its execution and the clear purpose behind what it’s doing. It’s metal and it’s not. It’s rock and it’s pop and it’s heavy and it’s light and floating. And its songs have substance as well as style. With Borknagar‘s Lars Nedland as the founding principal of the project, the potential in Anti‘s eight component tracks is huge, and if one winds up thinking of this as post-black metal, it’s a staggeringly complex iteration of it to which this and any other description I’ve seen does little justice. It’s going to get called “prog” a lot because of the considered nature of its composition, but that’s barely scratching the surface of what’s happening here.

White Void on Thee Facebooks

Nuclear Blast Records store

 

Day of the Jackal, Day Zero

Day of the Jackal Day Zero

Leeds, UK, four-piece Day of the Jackal bring straight-ahead hard rock songwriting and performance with an edge of classic heavy. There’s a Guns ‘n’ Roses reference in “Belief in a Lie” if you’re up for catching it, and later cuts like “Riskin’ it All” and “‘Til the Devil” have like-minded dudes-just-hit-on-your-girlfriend-and-you’re-standing-right-there vibes. They’re a rock band and they know it, and while I was a little bummed out “Rotten to the Core” wasn’t an Overkill cover, the 10 songs of love and death that pervade this debut long-player are notably hooky from “On Your Own” to “Deadfall” and “Rock ‘n’ Roll Deathride,” which casually inhabits biker riffing with no less ease of movement than the band would seem to do anything else. Production by James “Atko” Atkinson of Gentlemans Pistols highlights the clarity of the performance rather than giving a rawer glimpse at who Day of the Jackal might be on stage, but there’s plenty of vitality to go around in any case, and it’s headed your way from the moment you start the record.

Day of the Jackal on Thee Facebooks

Day of the Jackal on Bandcamp

 

Green Druid, At the Maw of Ruin

green druid at the maw of ruin

Following their 2018 debut, Ashen Blood (review here), Denver heavy lifters Green Druid give due breadth to their closing take on Portishead‘s “Threads,” but the truth is that cover is set up by the prior five tracks of huge-sounding riffery, basking in the varying glories of stoner doom throughout opener “The Forest Dark” while keeping an eye toward atmospheric reach all the while. It is not just nod and crush, in other words, in Green Druid‘s arsenal throughout At the Maw of Ruin, and indeed, “End of Men” and “Haunted Memories” bridge sludge and black metal screaming as “A Throne Abandoned” offers surprising emotional urgency over its ready plod, and the long spoken section in “Desert of Fury/Ocean of Despair” eventually gives way not only to the most weighted slamming on offer, but a stretch of noise to lead into the closer. All along the way, Green Druid mark themselves out as a more complex outfit than their first record showed them to be, and their reach shows no sign of stopping here either.

Green Druid on Thee Facebooks

Earache Records website

 

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Quarterly Review: Dopelord, Scorched Oak, Kings of the Fucking Sea, Mantarraya, Häxmästaren, Shiva the Destructor, Amammoth, Nineteen Thirteen, Ikitan, Smote

Posted in Reviews on March 31st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

quarterly-review-spring-2019

Third day, and you know what that means. Today we hit and pass the halfway mark of this Quarterly Review. I won’t say it hasn’t been work, but it seems like every time I do one of these lately I continue to be astounded by how much easier writing about good stuff makes it. I must’ve done a real clunker like two years ago or something. Can’t think of one, but wow, it’s way more fun when the tunes are killer.

To that end we start with Dopelord today, haha. Have fun digging through if you do.

Quarterly Review #21-30:

Dopelord, Reality Dagger

Dopelord Reality Dagger

They put it in a 12″, and that’s cool, but in addition to the fact that it’s about 22 minutes long, something about Reality Dagger, the latest EP from Poland’s Dopelord, strikes me as being really 10″ worthy. I know 10″ is the bastard son of vinyl pressings — doesn’t fit with your LPs and doesn’t fit with your 7″s. They’re a nuisance. Do they get their own shelf? Mixed in throughout? Well, however you organize them, I think a limited 10″ of Reality Dagger would be perfect, because from the melodies strewn throughout “Dark Coils” and the wildly catchy “Your Blood” — maybe the most complex vocal arrangement I’ve yet heard from the band — to the ultra-sludge interplay with screams on the 10-minute closing title-track, it sounds to me like standing out from the crowd is exactly what Dopelord want to do. They want to be that band that doesn’t fit your preconceptions of stoner-doom, or sludge, or modern heavy largesse in the post-Monolord vein. Why not match that admirable drive in format? Oh hell, you know what? I’ll just by the CD and have done with it. One of the best EPs I’ve heard this year.

Dopelord on Thee Facebooks

Dopelord on Bandcamp

 

Scorched Oak, Withering Earth

Scorched Oak Withering Earth

Don’t be surprised when you see Kozmik Artifactz, Nasoni Records, or some other respected probably-European purveyor of heavy coming through with an announcement they’ve picked up Scorched Oak. The Dortmund, Germany, trio seem to have taken the last few years to figure out where they were headed — they pared down from a five-piece, for example — and their rolling tides of fuzz on late-2020’s debut LP Withering Earth bears the fruit of those efforts. Aesthetically and structurally sound, it’s able to touch on heavy blues, metal and drifting psychedelia all within the span of a seven-minute track like “Swamp,” and in its five-songs running shortest to longest, it effectively draws the listener deeper into the world the band are creating through dual vocals, patient craft and spacious production. If I was a label, I’d sign them for the bass tone on 14-minute closer “Desert” alone, never mind any of the other natural phenomena they portray throughout the record, which is perhaps grim in theme but nonetheless brimming with potential. Some cool riffs on this dying planet.

Scorched Oak on Thee Facebooks

Scorched Oak on Bandcamp

 

Kings of the Fucking Sea, In Concert

Kings of the Fucking Sea In Concert

A scorching set culled from two nights of performances in their native Nashville, what’s essentially serving as Kings of the Fucking Sea‘s debut long-player, In Concert, is a paean to raw psychedelic power trio worship. High order ripper groove pervades “Witch Mountain” and the wasn’t-yet-named “Hiding No More” — which was introduced tentatively as “Death Dealer,” which the following track is actually titled. Disorienting? Shit yeah it is. And shove all the poignancy of making a live album in Feb. 2020 ahead of the pandemic blah blah. That’s not what’s happening here. This is all about blow-the-door-so-we-can-escape psychedelic pull and thrust. One gets the sense that Kings of the Fucking Sea are more in control than they let on, but they play it fast and loose and slow and loose throughout In Concert and by the time the mellower jam in “I Walk Alone” opens up to the garage-style wash of crash cymbal ahead of closer “The Nile Song,” the swirling fuckall that ensues is rampant with noise-coated fire. A show that might make you look up from your phone. So cool it might be jazz. I gotta think about it.

Kings of the Fucking Sea on Thee Facebooks

Agitated Records on Bandcamp

 

Mantarraya, Mantarraya

mantarraya mantarraya

They bill themselves as ‘Mantarraya – power trío,’ and guitarist/vocalist Herman Robles Montero, drummer/maybe-harmonica-ist Kelvin Sifuentes Pérez and bassist/vocalist Enzo Silva Agurto certainly live up to that standard on their late-2020 self-titled debut full-length. The vibe is classic heavy ’70s through and through, and the Peruvian three-piece roll and boogie through the 11 assembled tracks with fervent bluesy swing on “En el Fondo” and no shortage of shuffle throughout the nine-minute “120 Años (Color),” which comes paired with the trippier “Almendrados” in what seems like a purposeful nod to the more out-there among the out there, bringing things back around to finish swinging and bouncing on the eponymous closer. I’ll take the classic boogie as it comes, and Mantarraya do it well, basking in a natural but not too purposefully so sense of underproduction while getting their point across in encouraging-first-record fashion. At over an hour long, it’s too much for a single LP, but plenty of time for them to get their bearings as they begin their creative journey.

Mantarraya on Thee Facebooks

Mantarraya on Bandcamp

 

Häxmästaren, Sol i Exil

Häxmästaren sol i exil

At the risk of repeating myself, someone’s gonna sign Häxmästaren. You can just tell. The Swedish five-piece’s second album, Sol i Exil (“sun in exile,” in English), is a mélange of heavy rock and classic doom influences, blurring the lines between microgenres en route to an individual approach that’s still accessible enough in a riffer like “Millennium Phenomenon” or “Dödskult Ritual” to be immediately familiar and telegraph to the converted where the band are coming from. Vocalist Niklas Ekwall — any relation to Magnus from The Quill? — mixes in some screams and growls to his melodic style, further broadening the palette and adding an edge of extremity to “Children of the Mountain,” while “Growing Horns” and the capper title-track vibe out with with a more classic feel, whatever gutturalisms happen along the way, the latter feeling like a bonus for being in Swedish. In the ever-fertile creative ground that is Gothenburg, it should be no surprise to find a band like this flourishing, but fortunately Sol i Exil doesn’t have to be a surprise to kick ass.

Häxmästaren on Thee Facebooks

Häxmästaren on Bandcamp

 

Shiva the Destructor, Find the Others

SHIVA THE DESTRUCTOR FIND THE OTHERS

Launching with the nine-minute instrumental “Benares” is a telling way for Kyiv’s Shiva the Destructor to begin their debut LP, since it immediately sets listener immersion as their priority. The five-track/44-minute album isn’t short on it, either, and with the band’s progressive, meditative psychedelic style, each song unfolds in its own way and in its own time, drawn together through warmth of tone and periods of heft and spaciousness on “Hydronaut” and a bit of playful bounce on “Summer of Love” (someone in this band likes reggae) and a Middle Eastern turn on “Ishtar” before “Nirvana Beach” seems to use the lyrics to describe what’s happening in the music itself before cutting off suddenly at the end. Vocals stand alone or in harmony and the double-guitar four-piece bask in a sunshine-coated sound that’s inviting and hypnotic in kind, offering turns enough to keep their audience following along and undulations that are duly a clarion to the ‘others’ referenced in the title. It’s like a call to prayer for weirdo psych heads. I’ll take that and hope for more to come.

Shiva the Destructor on Thee Facebooks

Robustfellow Productions on Bandcamp

 

Amammoth, The Fire Above

amammoth the fire above

The first and only lyric in “Heal” — the opening track of Sydney, Australia, trio Amammoth‘s debut album, The Fire Above — is the word “marijuana.” It doesn’t get any less stoned from there. Riffs come in massive waves, and even as “The Sun” digs into a bit of sludge, the largesse and crash remains thoroughly weedian, with the lumbering “Shadows” closing out the first half of the LP with particularly Sleep-y nod. Rawer shouted vocals also recall earlier Sleep, but something in Amammoth‘s sound hints toward a more metallic background than just pure Sabbath worship, and “Rise” brings that forward even as it pushes into slow-wah psychedelics, letting “Blade Runner” mirror “The Sun” in its sludgy push before closer “Walk Towards What Blinds You (Blood Bong)” introduces some backing vocals that fit surprisingly well even they kind of feel like a goof on the part of the band. Amammoth, as a word, would seem to be something not-mammoth. In sound, Amammoth are the opposite.

Amammoth on Thee Facebooks

Electric Valley Records website

 

Nineteen Thirteen, MCMXIII

nineteen thirteen mcmxiii

With emotional stakes sufficiently high throughout, MCMXIII is urgent enough to be post-hardcore, but there’s an underpinning of progressive heavy rock even in the mellower stretch of the eight-minute “Dogfight” that complements the noisier and more angular aspects on display elsewhere. Opener “Post Blue Collar Blues” sets the plotline for the newcomer Dayton, Ohio, four-piece, with thoughtful lyrics and a cerebral-but-not-dead-of-spirit instrumental style made full and spacious through the production. Melodies flesh out in “Cripple John” and “Old Face on the Wall,” brooding and surging in children-of-the-’90s fashion, but I hear a bit of Wovenhand in that finale as well — though maybe the one doesn’t exclude the other — so clearly Nineteen Thirteen are just beginning this obviously-passion-fueled exploration of sound aesthetic with these songs, but the debut EP they comprise cuts a wide swath with marked confidence and deceptive memorability. A new turn on Rust Belt heavy.

Nineteen Thirteen on Thee Facebooks

Nineteen Thirteen on Bandcamp

 

Ikitan, Twenty-Twenty

ikitan twenty-twenty

Hey, you process trauma from living through the last year your way and Genova, Italy’s Ikitan will process it theirs. In their case, that means the writing, recording and self-release of their 20-minute single-song EP, Twenty-Twenty, a sprawling work of instrumentalist heavy post-rock rife with spacious, airy lead guitar and a solid rhythmic foundation. Movements occur in waves and layers, but there is a definite thread being woven throughout the outing from one part to the next, held together alternately by the bass or drums or even guitar, though it’s the latter that seems to be leading those changes as well. The shifts are fluid in any case, and Ikitan grow Twenty-Twenty‘s lone, titular piece to a satisfyingly heft as they move through, harnessing atmosphere as well as weight even before they lower volume for stretches in the second half. There’s a quick surge at the end, but “Twenty-Twenty” is more about journey than destination, and Ikitan make the voyage enticing.

Ikitan on Thee Facebooks

Ikitan on Bandcamp

 

Smote, Bodkin

smote bodkin

Loops, far-out spaces and a generally experimentalist feel ooze outward like Icelandic lava from Bodkin, the five-song debut LP from UK-based solo-outfit Smote. The gentleman behind the flow is Newcastle upon Tyne’s Daniel Foggin, and this is one of three releases he has out so far in 2021, along with a prior drone collaboration tape with Forest Mourning and a subsequent EP made of two tracks at around 15 minutes each. Clearly a project that can be done indoors during pandemic lockdown, Smote‘s material is wide-ranging just the same, bringing Eastern multi-instrumentalism and traditionalist UK psych together on “Fohrt” and “Moninna,” which would border on folk but for all that buzz in the background. The 11-minute “Motte” is a highlight of acid ritualizing, but the droning title-track that rounds out makes each crash count all the more for the spaces that separate them. I dig this a lot, between you and me. I get vibes like Lamp of the Universe here in terms of sonic ambition and resultant presence. That’s not a comparison I make lightly, and this is a project I will be following.

Smote on Bandcamp

Weird Beard Records store

 

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Shiva the Destructor Post New Single “Hydronaut”; Find the Others Due March 26

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 8th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

SHIVA THE DESTRUCTOR

Ukrainian heavy psychedelic rockers Shiva the Destructor are giving a nine-minute preview of their upcoming debut album, Find the Others, in the new single “Hydronaut.” Following on from the prior-unveiled “Nirvana Beach,” it finds the Kyiv four-piece running out of songs to post in advance, so it’s probably a good thing the record’s out on March 26. You’ll find the track at the bottom of the post, and if and when you put it on, be ready to spend the entirety of its run with it. There’s a warm-toned, welcoming vibe that’s a little bit reminiscent of defunct Kyiv troupe Ethereal Riffian, but maybe more born of post-Elder progressive heavy and My Sleeping Karma‘s penchant for getting lost in the groove. But whatever else you take awawy from that meandering-ass last sentence, take the word “vibe,” because that and the melody are what it’s all about.

Haven’t heard the record yet, but it’s easy enough to dig “Hydronaut” and “Nirvana Beach,” so by all means, yes, do that.

The PR wire awaits you:

SHIVA THE DESTRUCTOR FIND THE OTHERS

Rodion Tsirka on “Hydronaut”:

It all started with a dense swampy riff that I came up with on April 20, 2016. I wanted to post a video on my YouTube channel that day, so I washed the dishes thoroughly, picked up a downtuned guitar and started playing. Right off the bat, the main riff came out.

On May 1, using the “range hood” method and having returned to the uptuned Shiva-tuning, I got out of my head almost all other parts of the future track. The method is that I record the main riff using a looper, leave it in the living room to play the loop, go to the kitchen, turn on the range hood fan at a speed at which I can barely hear the riff, and wash the dishes. After these five to ten minutes, melodies “derivative” of the main riff start playing in my head. The next step is to let myself simmer in those for a little, then come back to the living room, quickly turn off the looper and take the guitar just in time to figure out everything still playing in my head. In a way, the range hood fan works like a subway ride after a rehearsal — it has its own sonic range that can be relied on as a support on which something similar to what’s stuck in my head after a rehearsal starts to play.

So, there was this initial dense swampy guitar riff, and then a swampy dense bass riff emerged from it, layered by a light guitar intro. Actually, the whole track is a result of mixing something dense and swampy with something light and airy.

Then, with the guys, the verses were developed where the harmony moved somewhere and not always stayed in one place, as it often happened with my riffs back then, and the lyrics were written.

My initial idea was much thicker and slower, but together we made a song that significantly expanded the range of emotions it initially covered.

Pre-Order of “Find the Others” album at this location:
https://robustfellow.bandcamp.com/album/find-the-others

Progressive heavy psych group Shiva the Destructor plays sprawling, spiraling rock music that is superbly crafted for maximum atmospheric flow. Hailing from Kyiv, Ukraine, the formidable four-piece is a band of true compositional ambition. Shiva the Destructor will release the new full-length LP, ‘Find the Others’, on March 26 via Robustfellow Productions.

1.) Benares
2.) Hydronaut
3.) Summer of Love
4.) Ishtar
5.) Nirvana Beach

Shiva the Destructor features Andrii Pryimak (guitar, vocals, backing vocals, keyboards), Rodion Tsikra (guitar, vocals), Andrew Sernyak (bass, backing vocals) and Kostiantyn Kalachikov (drums), who replaced Marco Sharyi, the band’s original drummer and ideological co-creator who performed and composed lyrics on ‘Find the Others’.

https://www.facebook.com/shivathedestructor/
https://www.instagram.com/shivathedestructor/
https://shivathedestructor.com/
https://www.facebook.com/RobustfellowProds
https://www.instagram.com/robustfellow_prods
http://www.robustfellow.bandcamp.com

Shiva the Destructor, “Hydronaut”

Shiva the Destructor, Find the Others (2021)

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Somali Yacht Club Sign to Season of Mist; Reissues & New Album Soon

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 1st, 2021 by JJ Koczan

Hey, that’s awesome. Good for you, Somali Yacht Club. Along with Stoned Jesus being on Napalm, the Lviv trio’s signing to Season of Mist is the biggest heavy-underground inking I can think of — please correct me if I’m wrong. It’s good news in any case, and all the more so since it comes with word of a new album on the horizon. That’ll be fun, especially as it coincides with reissues for 2018’s The Sea (review here) and 2014’s The Sun (discussed here). Sign me up for new stuff for sure.

I’m normally in favor of get-it-all-out-there-as-fast-as-possible-or-at-least-send-it-to-me-early, but in Somali Yacht Club‘s case, if the new record doesn’t show up for a bit, I think that might be okay and give people a chance to get caught up. The Sea and The Sun both resonate on a frequency ill-suited to a quick superficial listen. These are records worth diving into. If a reissue gets an opportunity to do that before being overshadowed by a new album, I think that’d be fine.

On the other hand, new stuff please.

It’s an ongoing debate. With myself. Because I don’t have friends.

Anyhow, congrats to the band and cheers to Season of Mist on the ace pickup:

somali yacht club

SOMALI YACHT CLUB Signs to Season of Mist

Season of Mist are proud to announce the signing of psychedelic stoner rock trio SOMALI YACHT CLUB! The band will be releasing a brand new album as well as their back catalogue via Season of Mist in the near future. Stay tuned!

The band comments: “We’re proud to announce that our new album will be released on the Season of Mist. It’s an honor to be part of their roster, featuring many bands that are significant to us. We’re very excited and hope that this cooperation will be fruitful! “

For a glimpse of what to expect, check out SOMALI YACHT CLUB on Bandcamp!

SOMALI YACHT CLUB is a psychedelic stoner rock trio from Lviv, Ukraine. It started out as a jam session between band members from different Lviv groups, but soon turned into the main act for each of them.

The trio self-released the demo EP called ‘Sandsongs’ in 2011. After this, they played numerous shows in Ukraine and shared the stage with bands like ELDER, KADAVER, RED FANG and others. The first album “The Sun” was released on September 11, 2014 (Robustfellow). After the 2015 release of LP “The Sun” (Bilocation Records) the band went on their first European tour with ETHEREAL RIFFIAN (UA).

In 2018, SOMALI YACHT CLUB released the second album “The Sea” (Robustfellow, Bilocation Records) and toured with STRAYTONES (UA) and STONED JESUS Jesus (UA). The stoner rockers have played at festivals like Void, Swamp, Keep It Low and several Garmonbozia festivals.

Genre: Psychedelic Stoner Rock

Line-up:
Ihor – guitar, vocals, keys
Artur – bass
Oleksa – drums

http://facebook.com/Somaliyachtclub
http://somaliyachtclub.bandcamp.com
http://instagram.com/somaliyachtclub
https://www.facebook.com/seasonofmistofficial
http://www.season-of-mist.com/

Somali Yacht Club, The Sea (2018)

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Video Interview: Igor Sidorenko of Stoned Jesus

Posted in Bootleg Theater, Features on December 18th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

stoned jesus

Last month, Stoned Jesus played. On a stage. With people there. Some people, anyway. The show, held in their hometown of Kyiv, Ukraine, was of course set up for social distancing, and in addition to that new territory, it also marked the first time the three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Igor Sidorenko, Serhij Sljussar and drummer Dmytro Zinchenko performed acoustically. It was reportedly taped for posterity and videos will likely surface at some point later or sooner. As it is, the photos the band has posted on social media make it look all the more like the special night it must’ve been.

Count Stoned Jesus among the multitudes with ‘best laid plans’ for 2020. Among other tours they had in the works for Europe, South America, etc., they were to have made their US debut at the second Desertfest New York and tour around that — an initial incursion to American soil that would have only furthered their status as one of Europe’s leading purveyors of heavy rock. Instead, a live stream of a show at Green Theatre from 2019, pro-shot, pro-audio, pro-edit, was aired for fans missing seeing them on stage — or those like myself, who’ve yet to be so fortunate — and unlike other come-and-gone livestreams, the band and Napalm Records have been kind enough to keep it available for the public. I’ve included it here, if only because it’s worth watching.

It’s hard to do interviews these days and not talk about what could’ve been in an alternate reality 2020, but Sidorenko is a personable cat. In addition to the November show and the livestream, he chatted about songwriting, the deeply personal relationship he has to the songs on the band’s most recent LP, 2018’s Pilgrims (review here), the enduring legacy of 2012’s Seven Thunders Roar (review here), the reissue of their debut album, 2010’s First Communion (complete with product placement!), his love of Elephant Tree‘s latest record and much more. Of special note is the section where he discusses the direction of the next Stoned Jesus full-length, for which writing is in progress, and the idea of songwriting as an end unto itself in a multimedia-driven age. Also his foray into stand-up, at which one imagines he’s quite good.

It was a fun conversation. I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for reading and watching:

Stoned Jesus Interview with Igor Sidorenko, Dec. 11, 2020

Stoned JesusPilgrims and the reissue of First Communion are out now and you can still watch the Green Theatre live show below.

Stoned Jesus, Live at Green Theatre

Stoned Jesus on Twitter

Stoned Jesus on Thee Facebooks

Stoned Jesus on Instagram

Napalm Records website

Napalm Records on Thee Facebooks

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