Tony Reed Posts “Funeral Suit” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 25th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

tony reed

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The stream of  http://www.inaf.ulaval.ca/?447 - experienced writers, quality services, fast delivery and other benefits can be found in our academy writing help receive a 100% Funeral Suit is at the bottom of this post, and  Reed‘s “Funeral Suit” clip follows here.

Please enjoy:

Tony Reed, “Funeral Suit” official video

Seattle songwriter and producer TONY REED (also frontman of Mos Generator) debuts an intimate monochrome video for the title track of his solo acoustic album ‘Funeral Suit’, available now on Ripple Music as part of their ‘Blood And Strings: The Ripple Acoustic’ series.

TONY REED is known for being the driving force behind Seattle’s heavy rock trio Mos Generator, as well as one of the most prolific songwriters and respected producers of the American underground rock scene. While he released his solo debut with ‘The Lost Chronicles Of Heavy Rock Vol. 1’ in 2018, never had he found the right occasion to sit down, grab a guitar and lay himself bare as freely and soulfully as he does on his acoustic debut ‘Funeral Suit’. With ‘Funeral Suit’, Tony Reed delivers his most personal work to date, pushing the experience further than the standard “man with a guitar” approach. Whether it’s the delicate arrangements, soulful vocal harmonies or piano-based escapades, this is a dense and multifaceted folk rock album with a strong progressive edge that will resonate with any listener.

Tony Reed, Funeral Suit (2020)

Tony Reed on Bandcamp

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Mos Generator to Reissue The Lantern Feb. 26; Preorders Available

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 10th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Don’t get me wrong, I’d probably be posting about a Mos Generator reissue/reworking/whatever-you-want-to-call-it anyway, because, well, it’s been like three days and I’ll admit I was starting to jones for some Tony Reed news, but look at that cover art. Man, that rules. I’m pretty sure the stuff on The Lantern — though it’s been remixed and so on — showed up on Destroy! The Mos Generator as well as on Tales From the Vault, but whatever. For the cover alone I’m happy to give this one some space. I don’t even want it on a poster. I want it on a tapestry. I want it on a throw blanket. A window treatment. Something.

You’ll note that The Lantern continues the collab between Mos Generator and Argonauta Records, which released the band’s split with Di’Aul already this year. One doubts this will be the last either. And if you missed it, Reed‘s solo record came out last week and is one of my favorite records of 2020. So there.

From the PR wire:

mos generator the lantern

MOS GENERATOR, To Reissue Finest Song Collection “The Lantern”!

Release date February 26.
Available as: 300 copies LTD GOLDEN BLUE VINYL + INSERT!

Tony Reed’s Mos Generator, who formed in 2000 in Port Orchard, Washington from the ashes of a ten year off & on collaboration between its three members, all of which are long time veterans of road & studio, inspired the heavy music scene since decades.

The need to strip down to the basics of hard rock was apparent from their start and continues to be the foundation for all the bands recent material. Mos Generator have released 9 full length studio albums, a retrospective album, 2 live albums and a plethora of split 7″ and 12” singles on such labels as Listenable, Roadburn, Small Stone, Ripple, Nasoni, Lay Bare, Hevi Sike, H42, Devil‘s Child, Kozmik Artifactz, Heavy Psych Sounds or just recently, their critically acclaimed split LP with Sludge maniacs Di’Aul via Argonauta Records.

Touring has been just as important to the profile of the band as making records has. Over the years Mos Generator has shared the stage with many great heavy rock bands across Europe and North America including extensive tours with Saint Vitus, FU Manchu, Elder, Spirit Caravan and Atomic Bitchwax. They have also played prestigious festivals throughout Europe including 2 appearances at Hellfest in France, opening up a whole new fan base to the Mos Generator sound.

After 20 years of making music the band shows no sign of slowing down. Now, the band has announced to reissue a finest collection of songs, taken from Mos Generator’s pathbreaking 2007-album, “Tales from the Vault”! Re-mastered and with its blistering new mix, “The Lantern” sounds like a different album and as you have never heard the band before, this exciting collection of tracks will be a definite must-have in every Mos Generator, heavy rock and doom metal record collection. “The Lantern” will be coming out as a limited Vinyl edition only, on February 26th 2021 via Argonauta Records, the pre-sale has just started at THIS LOCATION!

“The Lantern is a collection of songs that were originally released in 2007 on a 10” picture disc as Tales from The Vault.” Says band mastermind, Tony Reed. “The original album has been long out of print so it’s great to be re-releasing these tracks with new mixes and new artwork. The recording sessions, from June 2006, took place in our rehearsal room and capture us live playing brand new songs. A few of them were arranged only a day or two before the sessions started. I think this element makes the songs sound reckless and raw. There is an atmosphere on this record that doesn’t exist on any other Mos Generator release.”

Album Tracklist:
01. Dyin’ Blues
02. In The Upper Room
03. The Lantern
04. Nightwolf
05. O’Cataa

www.facebook.com/MosGenerator
www.mosgenerator.bandcamp.com
www.argonautarecords.com

Mos Generator, “Dyin’ Blues”

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Quarterly Review: The Pilgrim, Polymoon, Doctors of Space, Merlock, Sun Dial, Saturn’s Husk, Diggeth, Horizon, Limousine Beach, The Crooked Whispers

Posted in Reviews on October 12th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

THE-OBELISK-FALL-2020-QUARTERLY-REVIEW

Well, the weekend’s over and it’s time to wrap up the Quarterly Review. Rest assured, I wrote the following during my copious weekend leisure time, resting on the side of a heated Olympic-size pool with a beverage nearby. It definitely wasn’t four in the morning on a Sunday or anything. If I haven’t gotten the point across yet, I hope you’ve found something amid this massive swath of records that has resonated with you. By way of a cheap plug, I’ll be featuring audio from a lot of these bands on the Gimme Metal show this Friday, 5PM Eastern, if you’re up for tuning in.

Either way, thanks for reading and for being a part of the whole thing. Let’s wrap it up.

Quarterly Review #51-60:

The Pilgrim, …From the Earth to the Sky and Back

the pilgrim from the earth to the sky and back

Lest he be accused of laziness, Gabriele Fiori — also of Black Rainbows, Killer Boogie and the head of the Heavy Psych Sounds label, booking agency and festival series — made his solo debut as The Pilgrim with Spring 2019’s Walking into the Forest (review here). Joined by Black Rainbows drummer Filippo Ragazzoni, Fiori ups the scale of the journey with the second The Pilgrim LP, …From the Earth to the Sky and Back. Richer in arrangement, bolder in craft and more confident in performance, the album runs 14 songs and 50 minutes still largely based around an acoustic acid rock foundation, but with a song like “Riding the Horse” tapping ’70s singer-songwriter vibes while “Cuba” touches on Latin percussion and guitar and “Space and Time” journeying out near the record’s end with waves of synthesizer, it seems The Pilgrim isn’t so willing to be pigeonholed. So much the better.

The Pilgrim on Thee Facebooks

Heavy Psych Sounds website

 

Polymoon, Caterpillars of Creation

Polymoon Caterpillars of Creation

There is an undercurrent of extremity to the debut release from Polymoon, who hail from the psychedelic hotbed that is Tampere, Finland. The six-song/42-minute Caterpillars of Creation turns in opener “Silver Mt.” to fervent guitar push or from freaked-out cosmic prog into drifting post-universe exploration, setting the stage for the dynamic that unfolds throughout. The wash early in the second half of “Lazaward” is glorious, and it’s not the first or the last time Polymoon go to that adrenaline-pumping well, but the serenity that caps that song and seems to continue into “Malamalama” in closing side A is no less effective. “Helicaling” mounts tension in its early drumming but finally releases it later, and “Neitherworld” gives Caterpillars of Creation‘s most fervent thrust while closer “Metempsychosis” rounds out with a fitting sense of dissipation. As a first album/first release, it is particularly stunning, and to make it as plain as possible, I will think less of any list of 2020’s best debut albums that leaves out Polymoon.

Polymoon on Thee Facebooks

Svart Records website

 

Doctors of Space, First Treatment

doctors of space first treatment

The two-piece comprised of Martin Weaver (ex-Wicked Lady) and synthesist Scott “Dr. Space” Heller (Øresund Space Collective, Black Moon Circle, etc.) position First Treatment as their proper studio debut, and it certainly hits its marks in galaxial adventuring well enough to qualify as such, but the duo have been on a creative splurge throughout this year — even in lockdown — and so the six songs here are also born out of the work they’ve been doing since releasing their debut single “Ghouls ‘n’ Shit” (video premiere here) late last year. The album launches with “Journey to Enceladus,” which boasts drum programming by Weaver and though one of the movements in the 21-minute “Into the Oort Cloud” is based around beats, the bulk of First Treatment is purely a work of guitar and synth, and it basks in the freedom that being so untethered inherently brings. Running an hour long, it’s improvisational nature isn’t going to be for everyone, but Heller and Weaver make a strong argument that maybe it should be.

Doctors of Space on Thee Facebooks

Space Rock Productions website

 

Merlock, That Which Speaks

merlock that which speaks

Who’s ready for a New Wave of PNW Fuckery? That’s right folks, the NWOPNWF has arrived and it’s Spokane, Washington’s Merlock leading the sometimes-awfully-punk-sometimes-awfully-metal-but-somehow-also-always-sludge charge. Aggressive and damning in lyrics, swapping between raw screams, grows, shouts and cleaner vocals and unhinged in terms of its genre loyalties, That Which Speaks seems to find the “melt faces” setting wherever it goes, and though there’s a sense of the four-piece feeling out what works best for them stylistically, the sometimes frantic, sometimes willfully awkward transitions — as in second cut “Prolapse” — serve the overall purpose of undercutting predictability. Eight-minute opener/longest track (immediate points) “Idolon” stomps and shoves and gnashes and nasties its way through, and that’s the modus across what follows, though the scream-along headbanger “Vessel” somehow seems even rawer, and though it ends by floating into oblivion, the start of “Condemnation” heavy fuckin’ metal to me. You never know quite where Merlock are going to hit next, and that’s the joy of the thing. May they remain so cacophonous.

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Merlock on Bandcamp

 

Sun Dial, Mind Control: The Ultimate Edition

sun dial mind control

Long-running UK psychedelic rockers Sun Dial — led by founding guitarist/vocalist Gary Ramon — released Mind Control in 2012. Sulatron Records picked it up in 2015, and now, five years after that, the same label presents Mind Control: The Ultimate Edition, a 2CD version of the original LP-plus-bonus-tracks reissue that brings the total runtime of the release to a well-beyond-manageable 98 minutes of lysergic experimentation. A full 20 tracks are included in the comprehensive-feeling offering, and from early mixes to alternative takes and lost tracks, and if this isn’t the ‘ultimate’ version of Mind Control, I’m not sure what could be, notwithstanding a complete-studio-sessions box set. Perhaps as a step toward that, Mind Control: The Ultimate Edition gives an in-depth look at a vastly underappreciated outfit and is obviously put together as much for the label as by it. That is to say, you don’t put out a reissue like this unless you really love the original record, and if Sulatron loving a record isn’t enough endorsement for you, please turn in your mushrooms on your way out the door.

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Sulatron Records webstore

 

Saturn’s Husk, The Conduit

Saturns Husk The Conduit

Immersion is the goal of Saturn’s Husk‘s third long-player, The Conduit, and the Riga, Latvia, instrumentalist trio accomplish it quickly with the fluid riffs that emerge from the drone-based intro “Death of Imaginary Lights” and the subsequent 10-minute opener “Black Nebula.” At nine songs and 63 minutes, the album is consuming through the welcome nodder “The Heavenly Ape,” the especially-doomed “The Ritual” and the more mellow-float centerpiece “Spectral Haze,” while “Mycelium Messiah” brings more straight-ahead fuzz (for a time) and drones on either side surround the 10:35 “Sand Barrows,” the latter serving as the finale “A Shattered Visage” quoting Percy Bysshe Shelley and the former “City of the Djinn” running just a minute-plus but still doing enough to reset the brain from where “Mycelium Messiah” left it. Almost functioning as two albums side-by-side with “Spectral Haze” as the dividing point, The Conduit indeed seems to join various sides together, with a depth to coincide that invites the listener to explore along with it.

Saturn’s Husk on Thee Facebooks

Saturn’s Husk on Bandcamp

 

Diggeth, Gringos Galacticos

diggeth gringos galacticos

Landing a punch of classic metal to go along with its heavy-bottomed groove, Diggeth‘s Gringos Galacticos — one supposes the title ‘Spacecrackers’ was taken — was released by the Dutch trio in 2019 and receives a US limited vinyl edition thanks to Qumran Records. One finds some similar guitar heroics to those of Astrosoniq‘s more straightforward moments, but Diggeth‘s focus remains on hookmaking for the duration, offering hints of twang and acoustics in “In the Wake of Giants” and tipping a hat southwestward in “Three Gringos,” but “Straight-Shooter” is willfully breaks out its inner Hetfield and even as the penultimate “Unshackled” departs for a quieter break, it makes its way back in time for the big finish chorus, adding just a touch of Candlemass grandiosity for good measure before the harmonica-laced closing title-track rounds out with its dynamic spacey weirdness, the name of the album repeating itself in an answer to the Stephen Hawking sample that started the voyage on its way.

Diggeth on Thee Facebooks

Qumran Records website

 

Horizon, The White Planet Patrol

horizon the white planet patrol

Cursed Tongue Records has the vinyl here, and Three Moons the tape, and the CD will arrive through Aladeriva Records, La Rubia Producciones, Aneurisma Records, Surnia Records and Violence in the Veins — so yes, Horizon‘s third album, The White Planet Patrol is well backed. Fair enough for the Kyuss-via-BlackRainbows vibes of “End of Utopia” or the initial charge and flow of “The Backyard” that sets the Alicante, Spain, trio on their way. “King Serpent” and “Death & Teddies” bring well-crafted fuzz to bear, and “Blind World” effectively layers vocals in its chorus to coincide, but the more laid back roll of the title-cut is an unmistakable highlight. Shades of mid-paced Nebula surface in “Meet the Forest” later on, but Horizon are part of a tradition of heavy bands in Alicante and they know it. The smoothness of their tone and delivery speaks volumes on its own in that regard, never mind the actual songwriting, which also leaves nothing to be desired.

Horizon on Thee Facebooks

Cursed Tongue Records webstore

 

Limousine Beach, Stealin’ Wine + 2

Limousine Beach Stealin Wine

Debut EP from Limousine Beach out of Pittsburgh, and if the three guitars involved don’t push it over the top, certainly the vocal harmonies get that particular job done. You got six minutes for three songs? Yeah, obviously. They scorch through “Tiny Hunter” to close out, but it’s in the leadoff title-track that Stealin’ Wine + 2 sees the Dave Wheeler-fronted outfit land its most outrageous chorus, just before they go on to find a middle-ground between KISS and Thin Lizzy on “Hear You Calling.” The harmonies open and are striking from the outset, but it’s in how they’re arranged around the standalone parts from Wheeler (also Outsideinside, ex-Carousel) that the outfit’s truest potential is shown. Issued through Tee Pee Records, Stealin’ Wine + 2 is the kind of thing you’d pick up at a show in a normal year and then feel way ahead of everyone else when the LP finally hits. Not a normal year, obviously, but Limousine Beach are serving due notice just the same. In six minutes, no less.

Limousine Beach on Thee Facebooks

Tee Pee Records website

 

The Crooked Whispers, Satanic Melodies

the crooked whispers satanic melodies

I’m sure a lot of records show up at Satan’s door with notes, like, “Dear sir, please find the enclosed submitted for your approval,” but it’s not hard to imagine Beelzebub himself getting down with the filth-coated sludge and rolling doom unfurled across The Crooked Whispers‘ debut offering, Satanic Melodies, marked by hateful, near-blackened screams from Anthony Gaglia and the plodding riffs of Chad Davis (Hour of 13, et al). The title-track is longest at 8:23 and in addition to featuring Ignacio De Tommaso‘s right-on bass tone in its midsection, it plays out early like Weedeater sold their collective soul, and drifts out where earlier pieces “Sacrifice” and “Evil Tribute” and “Profane Pleasure” held their roll for the duration. Stretches of clean-vocal cultistry add to the doomier aspects, but The Crooked Whispers seem to care way less about genre than they do about worshiping the devil, and that unshakable faith behind them, the rest seems to fall into place in accordingly biting fashion.

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Quarterly Review: Bell Witch & Aerial Ruin, Cruthu, Sólstafir, ILS, Bismut, Cracked Machine, Megadrone, KLÄMP, Mábura, Astral Sleep

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

THE-OBELISK-FALL-2020-QUARTERLY-REVIEW

We’ve reached the portion of the Quarterly Review wherein I would no longer know what day it is if I didn’t have my notes to help me keep track. I suppose it doesn’t matter — the day, that is — since it’s 10 records either way, but I’d hate to review the same albums two days in a row or something. Though, come to think of it, that might be a fun experiment sometime.

Not today. Today is another fresh batch of 10 on the way to 60 by next Monday. We’ll get there. Always do. And if you’re wondering, today’s Thursday. At least that’s what I have in my notes.

Quarterly Review #31-40:

Bell Witch & Aerial Ruin, Stygian Bough Vol. I

bell witch aerial ruin Stygian Bough Volume 1

The collaborative effort Bell Witch & Aerial Ruin and their 64-minute full-length, Stygian Bough Vol. I — the intention toward future output together hinted at in the title already confirmed by the group(s) — is a direct extension of what Aerial Ruin, aka Erik Moggridge, brought to the last Bell Witch album, 2017’s Mirror Reaper (review here), in terms of complementing the crushing, emotionally resonant death-doom of the Washington duo with morose folk vocal melody. Stygian Bough Vol. I is distinguished by having been written by the two-plus-one-equals-three-piece as a group, and accordingly, it more fluidly weaves Moggridge‘s contributions into those of Bell Witch‘s Dylan Desmond and Jesse Shreibman, resulting in an approach like if Patrick Walker from Warning had joined Thergothon. It’s prevailing spirit is deep melancholy in longer pieces like “The Bastard Wind” and “The Unbodied Air,” both over 19 minutes, while it might be in “Heaven Torn Low I (The Passage)” and “Heaven Torn Low II (The Toll)” that the trio most effectively bring their intent to life. Either way, if you’re in, be ready to go all the way in, but know that it’s well worth doing so.

Bell Witch on Thee Facebooks

Aerial Ruin on Thee Facebooks

Profound Lore Records website

 

Cruthu, AthrĂș Crutha

cruthu AthrĂș Crutha

Traditional doom with flourish both of noise and NWOBHM guitars — that turn in the second half of opener “Transformation” is like a dogwhistle for Iron Maiden fans — I hear Cruthu‘s second album, AthrĂș Crutha, and all I can think of are label recommendations. The Michigan outfit’s 2017 debut, The Angle of Eternity (review here), was eventually issued on The Church Within, and that’d certainly work, but also VĂĄn Records, Shadow Kingdom, and even Cruz Del Sur seem like fitting potential homes for the righteousness on display across the vinyl-ready six-song/39-minute outing, frontman Ryan Evans commanding in presence over the reverb-loaded classic-style riffs of guitarist Dan McCormick and the accompanying gallop in Matt Fry‘s drums given heft by Derek Kasperlik‘s bass. Like the opener, “Necromancy” and “Dimensional Collide” move at a good clip, but side B’s “The Outsider” and closer “Crown of Horns” slow things down following the surprisingly rough-edged “Beyond the Pale.” One way or the other, it’s all doomed and so are we.

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Cruthu on Bandcamp

 

SĂłlstafir, Endless Twilight of Codependent Love

SĂłlstafir endless twilight of codependent love

Whereas 2017’s Berdreyminn (review here) existed in the shadow of 2014’s Ótta (review here), Endless Twilight of Codependent Love brings Iceland’s SĂłlstafir to a new place in terms of their longer-term progression. It is their first album with an English title since 2005’s Masterpiece of Bitterness, and though they’ve had English-language songs since then, the mellow “Her Fall From Grace” is obviously intended to be a standout here, and it is. On the nine-song/62-minute course of the album, however, it is one impression of many, and in the raging “Dionysus” and post-blackened “DrĂœsill,” 10-minute opener and longest track (immediate points) “Akkeri,” richly atmospheric “Rökkur,” goth-lounging “Or” and worthy finale “Úlfur,” SĂłlstafir remind of the richly individual nature of their approach. The language swaps could be reaching out to a broader, non-Icelandic-speaking audience. If so, it’s only in the interest of that audience to take note if they haven’t already.

SĂłlstafir on Thee Facebooks

Season of Mist website

 

ILS, Curse

ils curse

Curse is the first long-player from Portland, Oregon’s ILS, and it’s a rager in the PNW noise tradition, with uptempo, gonna-throw-a-punch-and-then-apologize riffs and basslines and swaps between semi-spoken shouts and vicious screams from Tom Glose (ex-Black Elk) that are precisely as jarring as they’re meant to be. I don’t think Curse is anyone’s first time at the dance — Glose, guitarist Nate Abner, bassist Adam Pike or drummer Tim Steiner — but it only benefits across its sans-bullshit 28-minute run by knowing what it wants to do. Its longest material, like the title-track or “Don’t Hurt Me,” which follows, or closer “For the Shame I Bring,” rests on either side of three and a half minutes, but some of the most brutal impressions are made in cuts like “It’s Not Lard but it’s a Cyst” or leadoff “Bad Parts,” which have even less time to waste but are no less consuming, particularly at high volume. The kind of record for when you want to assault yourself. And hey, that happens.

ILS on Thee Facebooks

P.O.G.O. Records on Bandcamp

 

Bismut, Retrocausality

bismut retrocausality

Apart from the consciously-titled three-minute noiseblaster finale “Antithesis” that’s clearly intended to contrast with what comes before it, Bismut‘s second LP for Lay Bare, Retrocausality, is made up of five extended instrumental pieces the shortest of which is just under 13 minutes long. The Nijmegen-based trio — guitarist Nik Linders, bassist Huibert der Weduwen, drummer Peter Dragt — build these semi-improvisational pieces on the foundation they set with 2018’s Schwerpunkt (review here), and their explorations through heavy rock, metal and psychedelia feel all the more cohesive as a song like “Vergangenheit” is nonetheless able to blindside with the heavy riff toward which it’s been moving for its entire first half. At 71 minutes total, it’s a purposefully unmanageable runtime, but as “PredvĂ­danie” imagines a psych-thrash and “Oscuramento” drones to its crashing finish, Bismut seem to be working on their own temporal accord anyhow. For those stuck on linear time, that means repeat listens may be necessary to fully digest, but that’s nothing to complain about either.

Bismut on Thee Facebooks

Lay Bare Recordings website

 

Cracked Machine, Gates of Keras

Cracked Machine Gates of Keras

UK instrumentalists Cracked Machine have worked relatively quickly over the course of their now-three albums to bring a sense of their own perspective to the tropes of heavy psychedelic rock. Alongside the warmth of tone in the guitar and bass, feeling drawn from the My Sleeping Karma/Colour Haze pastiche of progressive meditations, there is a coinciding edge of English heavy rock and roll that one can hear not so much in the drift of “Temple of Zaum” as in the push of “Black Square Icon,” which follows, as well as the subtle impatience of the drums on “October Dawn.” “Move 37,” on the other hand, is willfully speedier and more upbeat than much of what surrounds, but though opener/longest track (immediate points) “Cold Iron Light” hits 7:26, nothing on Gates of Keras sticks around long enough to overstay its welcome, and even in their deepest contemplations, the feeling of motion carries them and the listener effectively through the album’s span. They sound like a band realizing what they want to do with all the potential they’ve built up.

Cracked Machine on Thee Facebooks

Kozmik Artifactz website

PsyKa Records website

 

Megadrone, Transmissions From the Jovian Antennae

Megadrone Transmissions From the Jovian Antennae

From cinematic paranoia to consuming and ultra-slow rollout of massive tonality, the debut offering from Megadrone — the one-man outfit of former Bevar Sea vocalist Ganesh Krishnaswamy — stretches across 53 minutes of unmitigated sonic consumption. If nothing else, Krishnaswamy chose the right moniker for the project. The Bandcamp version is spread across two parts — “Transmission A” (21:45) and “Transmission B” (32:09) — and any vinyl release would require significant editing as well, but the version I have is one huge, extended track, and that feels like exactly how Transmissions From the Jovian Antennae was composed and is supposed to be heard. Its mind-numbing repetitions lead the listener on a subtle forward march — there are drums back in that morass somewhere, I know it — and the piece follows an arc that begins relatively quiet, swells in its midsection and gradually recedes again over its final 10 minutes or so. It goes without saying that a 53-minute work of experimentalist drone crushscaping isn’t going to be for the faint of heart. Bold favors bold.

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Megadrone on Bandcamp

 

KLÄMP, Hate You

klamp hate you

Sax-laced noise rock psychedelic freakouts, blown-out drums and shouts and drones, cacophonous stomp and chaotic sprawl, and a finale that holds back its payoff so long it feels cruel, KLÄMP‘s second album, Hate You, arrives less than a year after their self-titled debut, and perhaps there’s some clue as to why in the sheer mania of their execution. Hate You launches with the angularity of its 1:47 title-track and rolls out a nodding groove on top of that, but it’s movement from one part to another, one piece to another, is frenetic, regardless of the actual tempo, and the songs just sound like they were recorded to be played loud. Second cut “Arise” is the longest at 7:35 and it plays back and forth between two main parts before seeming to explode at the end, and by the time that’s done, you’re pretty much KLÄMPed into place waiting to see where the Utrecht trio go next. Oblivion wash on “An Orb,” the drum-led start-stops of “Big Bad Heart,” psych-smash “TJ” and that awaited end in “No Nerves” later, I’m not sure I have any better idea where that might be. That’s also what makes it work.

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God Unknown Records website

 

MĂĄbura, Heni

MĂĄbura heni

Preceded by two singles, Heni is the debut EP from Rio de Janeiro psychedelic tonal worshipers MĂĄbura, and its three component tracks, “AnhangĂĄ,” “III/IV” and “Bong of God” are intended to portray a lysergic experience through their according ambience and the sheer depth of the riffs they bring. “AnhangĂĄ” has vocals following the extended feedback and drone opening of its first half, but they unfold as a part of the general ambience, along with the drums that arrive late, are maybe sampler/programmed, and finish by leading directly into the crash/fuzz launch of “III/IV,” which just before it hits the two-minute mark unfurls into a watershed of effects and nod, crashing and stomping all the while until everything drops out but the bass only to return a short time later with the Riff in tow. Rumbling into a quick fade brings about the toking intro of “Bong of God,” which unfolds accordingly into a riff-led noisefest that makes its point seemingly without saying a word. I wouldn’t call it groundbreaking, but it’s a first EP. What it shows is that MĂĄbura have some significant presence of tone and purpose. Don’t be surprised when someone picks them up for a release.

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MĂĄbura on Bandcamp

 

Astral Sleep, Astral Doom Musick

Astral Sleep Astral Doom Musick

It’s still possible to hear some of Astral Sleep‘s death-doom roots in their third album, Astral Doom Musick, but the truth is they’ve become a more expansive unit than that (relatively) simple classification than describe. They’re doom, to be sure, but there are progressive, psychedelic and even traditional doom elements at work across the record’s four-song/43-minute push, with a sense of conceptual composition coming through in “Vril” and “Inegration” in the first half of the proceedings while the nine-and-a-half-minute “Schwerbelastungskörper” pushes into the darkest reaches and closer “Aurinko ja Kuu” harnesses a swirling progressive spread that’s dramatic unto its last outward procession and suitably large-sound in its production and tone. For a band who took eight years to issue a follow-up to their last full-length, Astral Sleep certainly have plenty to offer in aesthetic and craft. If it took them so long to put this record together, their time wasn’t wasted, but it’s hard to listen and not wonder where their next step might take them.

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Astral Sleep on Bandcamp

 

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Review & Track Premiere: Tony Reed, Funeral Suit

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on September 28th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

tony reed funeral suit

[Click play above to stream ‘Waterbirth’ from Tony Reed’s Funeral Suit. Album is out Nov. 6 on Ripple Music. Says Reed, ‘Musically the genesis of “Waterbirth” came to me by accident. I was visiting a friend who had an old National M4 resonator that he was playing in a tuning I wasn’t familiar with (DGDGBD). He was playing it with a slide in a blues style. I asked him if I could borrow it for the night to write something in my style with that tuning. This is what I recorded that night. The song is about being hopelessly lost and turning to the one you love to help guide you home.’]

The acoustic solo debut from Tony Reed arrives as part of a creative explosion that has been going on for years at this point. Recording at his own HeavyHead Studio in Port Orchard, Washington, Reed issues Funeral Suit through Ripple‘s ‘Blood and Strings’ series — which began with Wino‘s Forever Gone this summer –and it joins at least two splits, a dug-up-and-deconstructed single and another EP from his main outfit, Mos Generator, an archival release from the earlier goth-tinged project Constance Tomb (with a promise of a new album to follow, already in the works), and a debut full-length and second EP from the supergroup Big Scenic Nowhere, in which Reed works alongside members of Fu Manchu and Yawning Man, among a rotating cast of guests. Plus a swath of mixing and mastering projects for other artists and bands, as always. And there’s a good chance that I’ve left one or two things out.

In the context of this frenetic productivity, it’s somewhat astonishing that Reed found the time to add nuances like the self-harmonies and the Mellotron early in and the dual-layers of strum in the final fadeout of the title-track of Funeral Suit, or to tap into CatStevens-meets-AlainJohannes vibes on the progressive, finger-plugged and richly melodic opener “Waterbirth.” There are a couple reworked Mos Generator songs in “Lonely One” — originally “Lonely One Kenobi” from 2012’s Nomads (review here), which began the band’s association with Ripple Music — and “Wicked Willow” from 2016’s Abyssinia (review here), as well as closer “Who Goes There,” which appeared as a two-parter on late-2019’s Spontaneous Combustions EP (review here), but even these are given due treatment rather than simply played in “unplugged” fashion. To wit, the impassioned vocal of “Lonely One” and layers of guitar that accompany, or the slow piano balladry that suddenly feels like such a natural context for “Wicked Willow” and the choral effect that acts as a culmination for the entirety of Funeral Suit at the end of “Who Goes There.” These moments balance intimacy and melodic grandeur, emotional expression and stylistic experimentation.

As those who follow Reed‘s work to some degree or other would have to expect, he delivers this material with a steady, masterful hand. His approach to melody is clean and clear, his playing is precise but organic, and across the ultra-manageable eight-song/34-minute span of Funeral Suit, he demonstrates an awareness of his audience not only through a customary lack of pretense or in the lyrics to “Lonely One” (“I can tell you right now, people…”) and “Funeral Suit” (“…Can I find worth in you and you and you?”), but also in the breadth of arrangements throughout. A crucial first clue of the diversity to come arrives with “Waterbirth,” which is played in a style unlike anything else on the album. It’s the shortest track at 3:07, and along with the charm of a subtle Voivod reference in the first verse, it brings a melodic wash worthy of its title, Reed joining himself in the chorus for an effect conveying depth and melancholy.

tony reed

There’s a turn just before the last minute that brings handclaps and a feel like languid gospel, but of course a return to the chorus finishes, the structure duly reinforced. Even so, the message to the listener that Funeral Suit is more than guy-and-a-guitar folk emulation is immediate, and by putting “Waterbirth” first and then following it with the more straight-ahead strum of “Moonlighting,” the aforementioned Mellotron on “Funeral Suit,” and the relatively serene amble of “Along the Way” on the record’s first side, Reed likewise frames the progressive reach of the album as a priority. Thus the mind of the audience is more open to whatever the subsequent tracks might bring, and because the material that follows asks relatively few indulgences, it’s that much easier to follow along where each piece leads. This is a skill born of experience, and it makes an essential contribution to the spirit of the album as a whole.

“Lonely One Kenobi” was a standout hook on Nomads, and there may be a bit of reorienting the listener happening as “Lonely One” — the title dropping the Star Wars reference that seemed to distract from the emotionally-fueled, frankly lonely lyrics — but whether or not one assumes a given listener taking on Funeral Suit is already familiar, its harder-edged strum and its soulful vocals find it serving as a memorable inclusion here as well. It is followed and complemented by “Wicked Willow,” which departs from guitar in classic side B fashion, taking its own familiar basis and from it bringing a new texture to Funeral Suit only previously hinted toward. Slow, mellow and wistful as only a slow piano can be, it’s about as stripped-down as Reed gets here, and as it inevitably would, it highlights the songcraft that underscores all of these pieces, new or old. The same applies to the subsequent and penultimate “Might Just…” which feels stylistically like a reset back to where the album was on side A circa “Moonlighting” or “Along the Way,” with doubled-vocals in the repeated-line chorus of “Rolling along…,” melodic and straightforward, short at 3:30 but enough to satisfy and do its job between “Wicked Willow” and “Who Goes There,” which is the longest inclusion at 5:37 as well as the already-noted finale of the record, encompassing and ready for judgment-free sing-alongs as it is.

A linear build, it holds a tension in the guitar of its first half, the title lyric delivered with due paranoia. A break after two verse/chorus cycles comes at 3:25 in, and from there, the song launches into its righteous capstone movement, not a departure from what’s come before throughout Funeral Suit, but an extension thereof that speaks to one more prevailing factor of Reed‘s work across the LP, which is the forward potential. Not that he doesn’t have plenty going on besides, but having so risen to the challenge of this first offering, as a fan (I also wrote the bio for the album, which I’ll note was uncompensated only because I knew I’d want to review it as well), one only hopes he’ll continue to explore outward from the already-broad reach he establishes here. If Funeral Suit is a one-off, fair enough, but what it conveys to the listener feels far more substantial.

Tony Reed, Funeral Suit (2020)

Tony Reed on Bandcamp

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Mos Generator & Di’Aul Premiere Split LP in Full

Posted in audiObelisk on September 23rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

mos generator diaul split cover

Port Orchard, Washington’s Mos Generator and Milan, Italy’s Di’Aul will release a split LP this Friday through Argonauta Records. It’s a vinyl-only, limited-to-250 copies pressing, and if the pairing of bands seems random or at very least plucked out of the ether, the story behind how it came together could hardly be simpler. Reportedly, members of Di’Aul went to see Mos Generator on tour a few years back and hit up guitarist/vocalist Tony Reed about making something happen. Couple years after the fact, here we are. The life lesson is you lose nothing by sending that email, and maybe you get to put out a split with Mos Generator.

The Pacific Northwest heavy rock institution offer three tracks on side A of the quite-manageable 32-minute outing, and bring forth an installment of their ‘Plundering of the Vaults’ series with demos recorded between 2014 and 2018. As self-sufficient as they are in the studio with Reed working as producer as well as helming mixing and mastering, it’s hard to imagine the vaults aren’t overflowing at any given time, but the three inclusions here run shortest to longest and feel particularly choice.

“I Spoke to Death” opens in Sabbath-rock fashion while also invoking Americana folk, while “The Paranoid” rolls at a lumbering pace in contrast to its own obvious reference while the lyrics nod to The Stooges‘ “TV Eye” and vocal lines intertwine behind one of the most outwardly doomed progressions I’ve heard from the band. Somehow fitting, a cross-lineup (explained below) cover of Pink Floyd‘s “Fearless” — also recently taken on by Seattle/Los Angeles heavies Snail — caps Mos Generator‘s portion of the release with clarity cutting through psychedelia and a kick of energy bolstering the mellow vibe of the Meddle original while still ending with a crowd chant, maybe backwards in this case.

Meanwhile, in Milan, Di’Aul crush it. The four-piece of vocalist MoMo, guitarist LeLe, bassist Jeremy Toma and drummer Diego Bertoni celebrate 10 years of the band’s existence in 2020, and their two assembled cuts — “The House on the Edge of the World” (8:47) and “Three Ladies” (7:56) — stand in immediate contrast to side A in their focus on sheer tonal heft and impact. Beginning with two minutes-plus of ambience and stark guitar, “The House on the Edge of the World” builds into a massive and righteous nod without losing its hook in the ensuing fray.

It is H-E-A-V-Y, and harsher in its approach than Mos Generator, but makes a better complement for the fact that each act brings something different to the release. There’s sludge underlying what Di’Aul are doing, and some jabs and turns of riff in “The House on the Edge of the World” remind of YOB, but as the track chug-stop-chugs to its end, its gravity is its own. More immediate, “Three Ladies” starts out with bass and drums and is underway soon enough with its own stomp and drawl, a solo break as it heads into its midsection proving only a brief respite from the willful repetition and concrete-on-skull vibe that surrounds.

If you think you can hang, you probably can. Splits like this often become a footnote in the respective catalogs of the bands that take part in them. Mos Generator always have a slew of things going on, and Di’Aul are two years removed from their second LP, Nobody’s Heaven (review here), but for an offering that asks next to nothing of the listener beyond the time involved in hearing the thing, and for the quality of work put in by both groups, you can’t really go wrong, whether either band is new to you or not. The relatively few physical copies that exist create some urgency around it, so I’m that much more appreciative of being able to host the full stream of the split for you to check out in advance of the proper release this Friday.

More PR wire info follows under the player.

Please enjoy:

Mos Generator & Di’Aul, Split official premiere

Heavy rock icons, Mos Generator, have teamed up with Italy’s doom and sludge rock heavy weights Di’Aul for the release of a 5-track split vinyl-only LP, coming out on September 25th, 2020, via Argonauta Records!

Preorder here: www.argonautarecords.com/shop

Mos Generator’s plundering of the Vaults continues with three demos recorded between May 2014 and June 2018. Says Tony Reed, “All three of these songs were recorded live in our rehearsal space and then layers were added later in the studio. There are a few interesting things about these songs. First, they are loosely arranged ideas that were only played two or three times before we recorded them, and I think that is what helps give them the raw edge that they have. And two, there is a crossover of band line-ups. On the Pink Floyd cover “Fearless”, original drummer Shawn Johnson is playing with second line-up bassist Sean Booth. That has happened before with other configurations and I enjoy it. Someday I would like to record with both rhythm sections at once.”

After a decade of shows across Europe and four albums to date, Di’Aul have grabbed the chance to team up with one of the best rock bands of our time: Mos Generator. “We saw them live with Saint Vitus during their European tour, completely astonished from their sound, MoMo and Rex decided to write a message to Mr. Tony Reed and ask him to make a record together. And so it is!”

Di’Aul recorded two brand new songs in a one day session with longtime friends and producers Federico Lino and Alessio Massara of the Iron Ape Studio in Vigevano (Pavia – Italy), mastered at HeavyHead Recording Co. by Tony Reed himself.

Tracklist:
A Side Mos Generator – “Plundering of the Vaults : Vol II”
1. I Spoke to Death
2. The Paranoid
3. Fearless ( Pink Floyd Cover )

B Side Di’Aul
1. The House on the Edge of the World
2. Three Ladies

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Di’Aul on Thee Facebooks

Di’Aul on Bandcamp

Argonauta Records website

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Tony Reed Announces Solo Acoustic Funeral Suit Album out Nov. 6 on Ripple Music

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 31st, 2020 by JJ Koczan

tony reed

This is one of the best records I’ve heard this year. Period. Tony Reed‘s Funeral Suit pushes well beyond the dude-and-guitar expectation of a rock frontman’s “solo acoustic debut” and unfolds a new breadth of his well established songcraft. I was fortunate enough to write the bio for it that you’ll see below, and I mean every single word I say in that thing. It’s time to start thinking of Tony Reed on a different level. Like, I hope I get to, but I probably shouldn’t be cool enough to do a premiere from the album, that kind of thing. It could not be more fitting in my mind that Reed is following Wino in Ripple‘s ‘Blood and Strings’ series. That’s the kind of level on which his work should be considered at this point.

Album info, preorder links, the bio I wrote and streaming single follow here, all via the PR wire. More to come:

tony reed funeral suit

TONY REED to release solo acoustic album ‘Funeral Suit’ on Ripple Music; first single streaming!

TONY REED New solo album ‘Funeral Suit’ Out November 6th on Ripple Music

US Preorder: https://ripplemusic.bigcartel.com/products?utf8=%E2%9C%93&search=funeral+suit
EU Preorder: https://en.ripple.spkr.media/artists/tony-reed/tony-reed-funeral-suit.html

Ripple Music announce the signing of Seattle heavyweight, multi-instrumentalist and respected producer TONY REED (also frontman of Mos Generator) for the release of his debut solo acoustic album ‘Funeral Suit’, as part of the ‘Blood And Strings: The Ripple Acoustic’ series. Stream the first single and preorder the album now!

With ‘Funeral Suit’, TONY REED delivers his most up-close and personal work to date. Known for being the driving force behind heavy rock stalwarts Mos Generator since 2000, the prolific songwriter made his solo debut with ‘The Lost Chronicles Of Heavy Rock Vol. 1’ tribute record in 2018, yet never had he found the right occasion to sit down, grab a guitar and lay himself bare as freely and soulfully as he does on ‘Funeral Suit’.

“A large percentage of the compositions on this album where the first or second takes of the music and vocals for songs that had been written and arranged only minutes earlier”, he says. Whether it’s the delicate arrangements, Reed’s velvet-smooth vocal harmonies or stirring piano-based moments, ‘Funeral Suit’ conveys a life-wide array of emotions that resonate in a universal way, regardless of the listener’s music inclinations. The debut single and title track showcases perfectly this multi-faceted aspect: a beautiful lament progressively turning into a ray of hope.

About the album themes, Tony Reed explains: “The album is titled ‘Funeral Suit’ because my father passed on August 16th 2019, and I went out and bought a nice suit for the funeral. The song is about how I felt and the wonder of how his passing may change me in the future. It’s also about the ones who are the closest to you in this life. Many of the songs are about guilt and regret. Insecurity, selfishness, and ego are matched by integrity, compassion and confidence.”

‘Funeral Suit’ comes as the second chapter of Ripple Music’s ‘Blood And Strings: The Ripple Acoustic’ series, in which some of the most admired names in rock and metal unplug to record albums of acoustic heaviness. It was recorded and mixed by Tony Reed at HeavyHead Recording Co., and will be issued on November 6th, 2020 and available now to preorder on deluxe edition vinyl, CD and digital edition via Ripple Music.

TRACK LISTING:
1. Waterbirth
2. Moonlighting
3. Funeral Suit
4. Along The Way
5. Lonely One
6. Wicked Willow
7. Might Just…
8. Who Goes There

BIO:

TONY REED belongs to a rare echelon of relentless creativity. A rock and roll lifer since his days self-recording tape demos as a teenager, he has spent the last three decades in an increasingly progressive pursuit of his art. In bands like Treepeople, Twelve-Thirty Dreamtime, Constance Tomb, Stone Axe, and his steadiest and most influential, Mos Generator, he has refined a songwriting, performance and recording process that is unmatched, and amassed a lifetime discography broad enough to make the rest of the universe seem outright lazy.

Tony Reed has toured on multiple continents and especially since revitalizing Mos Generator as a stage act in the early 2010s, earned a reputation for bringing the same ferocity to the stage as to the studio. As a frontman, Reed harnesses a classic rocker’s energy, but is only ever forward-thinking in his execution and engagement with his audience. At dive bars or huge festivals, his name is synonymous with a level of mastery that is no less his own than the songs he writes.

Headquartered in Port Orchard, Washington, his HeavyHead Studio is home to a fully-stocked production facility, and though Reed most often uses it for his own ends, the words “Mixed and Mastered by Tony Reed” have become a staple of heavy underground releases. His collaborations with artists, whether through split releases or actually sitting in with other bands, are rousing endorsements for listeners in the know, and his exploration continues unabated.

Whether it’s incorporating new elements of space and prog into Mos Generator, reviving the goth-tinged Constance Tomb, or beginning the entirely new pursuit of an acoustic/piano-based solo incarnation under his own name, TONY REED is a treasure of American rock and roll and someone whose soul bleeds into everything he crafts. It is time to start including his name among rock’s truest ambassadors.

https://tonyreed.bandcamp.com/
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Mos Generator Release “In the Upper Room” Digi-Single

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

Bottom line here? ‘Hey everybody, Tony‘s got a thing!’ I really can’t break it down any more than that. Quarantine life would seem to suit Tony Reed‘s studio proclivities, as he and his band Mos Generator have a barrage of releases in the works for the coming months through a variety of labels, taking part in comps, releasing splits, EPs, and one-off singles like “In the Upper Room” here. I’ve stopped counting all the upcoming outings, to be perfectly honest with you — I know I need to write a bio for his solo record this weekend, so that’s on the calendar — but yeah, if you think you can keep up with him, you’ll probably have to quit your dayjob just to properly dedicate yourself to the task.

“In the Upper Room” — recorded in 2006, mixed presumably last week — has made its way to Bandcamp both in its completed form and in the isolated tracks that make it up. Guitar sounds pretty slick too. And if doing that seems weird to you, Tony‘s right, this kind of thing is all over YouTube. And what’s more? I kind of like hearing that drum groove after the full song. Apparently the song is going to be released as part of a thing next year — maybe the archival vault series? — but it’s name-your-price now, and Reed tosses in a nice “lookout!” near the end, so have at it.

He posted the following:

mos generator in the upper room

Mos Generator – In The Upper Room – 2020 mix with isolated stems

I am remixing a recording session from June 2006 that will be re-issued in early 2021. During the remixing of these sessions I thought it might be cool to share some stereo “stems” of the recording. In this download you’ll hear the final mix but also be able to listen to stereo mixes of each player separately. You can find a lot of this kind of stuff up on youtube. I really like listening to isolated tracks so I thought I would share some online.

Here’s a bit about the session. In The Upper Room was recorded to 16 track 1” tape in our 9’x12’ jam room in June of 2006. All of the bed tracks were cut live in the room and that is why you can hear audio bleed over in each performers microphones. Upper Room was only a few days old when we recorded this so being in close quarters helped us play off of each other. After the live track was finished I did quite a few guitar overdubs and the vocals (I had a cold). The microphone setup was very minimal for these sessions.

As far as I can remember it was like this (or close).

Kick (outside) EV re20
Kick (beater side) Shure sm57
Snare top: Shure sm57
Rack tom: Equitek E-100
Floor toms: Some kind of condenser microphone in the middle of both floor toms.
No overhead microphones. All cymbals were capture by the tom mics. That is why I used condensers.
Bass: AKG d3400
Guitar: Shure sm57

1. In The Upper Room (2020 mix) 05:08
2. In The Upper Room (stereo drum stem) 05:08
3. In The Upper Room (stereo bass stem) 05:08
4. In The Upper Room (stereo guitars stem) 05:08
5. In The Upper Room (stereo vocals stem) 05:08

Recorded on a Tascam MS16 to 1” tape.

Tony Reed: guitar, vocals
Shawn Johnson: drums
Scooter Haslip: bass

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Mos Generator, “In the Upper Room”

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