Saturday, May 27, 2017
We’ve got a fresh batch of monster albums just in! Hurry, get to your paypal and push the pay now button. Thank me later and then scold me for causing excessive wallet rash. Don’t worry its common place in the hard rock village of camp.
Geezer – Psychoriffadelia
So you thought their self-titled released in 2016 was trippy, wait till you hear the brand spanking new one. It’s also offered up in multiple packages via the Indiegogo campaign which is out to help generate money for the new album and a tour in Europe.
Not only does it live up to the album title but Psychoriffadelia devours all high expectations coming hot the whiskers of the self-titled released just last year. The Beard of Doom jams us with hot crusty psychedelia and slathers with distorted riffs hallucinating with a sinister twang. Favorite track: Stressknots.
Brother O’ Brother – Neon Native
Boy oh boy does Brother O’ Brother have a killer thing going on. Molten fuzz meets hard banging blues.
Brother O' Brother incorporate a rowdy punk energy within a signature delta blues based duo tone. Mean Fu Manchu fuzz meets a smoked out Jack White.
Electric Mountain – Electric Mountain
These guys have stormed the scene with this new album gaining the attention of all the regulars in bandcamp. Not only does it deserve the attention, but it is yearning for new ears such as yours reading right now. Check it out.
Sounding like the Sasquatch of the Mexican desert, Electric Mountain combine some of the most authentic Kyuss induced groove that side of the Rio Grande. Weighing in at over 5k tons of super fuzz distorted with equal amounts of head bobbing bass, upbeat rhythm, and vocals rivaling John Garcia, these young lads have showcased a rock solid stoner rock affair.
Operators – Revelers
What we have here folks is a fantastic new album by a band who should be huge. I’m hearing all sorts of influences ranging from 70’s classic rock, to 90’s grunge to modern alternative metal. This stuff is flat out amazing. Available on vinyl all over European stores now, don’t sleep on this band. I’m telling you now. It gets better with each listen.
The Operators operate the airwaves with retro driven intent showcasing a gravel packed vocal wail skirting the divide between NWOBHM and melodic stoner rawk. The riffs revel with intensity and the groove tangles the listener between bluesy solos and punk rock energy staking claim as a modern day version of Deep Purple.
The Ossuary – Post Mortem Blues
This one came out early in the year and I can still remember the first time I heard the promo. I was totally blown away. The guitar tones are tremendously heavy, razor sharp and outweigh all others on the same playlist. The vocals are very strong and the overall vibe screams early Doom without overemphasizing any particular niche. For whatever reason it took me a couple months to finally order the vinyl, which is still available and limited which results in another fine album competing for top 10 honors for heavy album of the year. Don’t pass up on The Ossuary, it may be THE most underrated album of the year at this point.
The Big Motif – Does it Weigh Heavy
This album was apparently released some years ago and I am just getting around to discovering it. Loaded with succulent blues grooving at lounge room pace the vibes are chill and the riffs are hot. A blues album at heart, This thing not only weighs heavy but it’ll bring you to your knees pleading for another round of aural stimulation. I am certainly investigating these guys full bore at the moment and really dig this name your price album.
It’s a new week, a new batch of records, and a fresh perspective on the state of the heavy underground. It’s thriving. You all should know that by now. What are you waiting for; immerse yourself into the wormhole of rock n roll pleasure known as bandcamp.
Friday, May 26, 2017
Are you ready waveriders? It's controversial opinion time here at The Ripple Effect! Although it will surely cost me readers I am willing to stand by my convictions. Yes, despite the overwhelming opinion of the listening majority I declare that Mastodon is a good, nay, terrific band! That's right. I said it. Terrific. And furthermore...what's that? A tremendous number of music fans are quite fond of Mastodon? Oh. Perhaps I was misinformed. Well in that case let's simply move on and discuss their newest release, Emperor Of Sand.
This album rocks! From the moment I first hit the play button I immediately connected with these songs. Emperor Of Sand sees the band tweaking their sound and musical approach again, but this go around those elements demonstrably hearken back to Blood Mountain and Crack The Skye. These eleven tracks effortlessly combine the hard-edged muscularity of Mastodon's earlier records with the generous accessibility displayed on their more recent releases. The results are phenomenal!
Before I get too carried away I need to specifically highlight one aspect of this album which deserves special recognition, the vocals. Emperor Of Sand, in my humble opinion, features the best vocals that Mastodon has recorded to date. Troy Sanders and Brent Hinds sound stronger and more emotive than ever while Brann Dailor continues to evolve into an increasingly formidable singer. In fact, on many songs I'd say Brann's vocal contributions steal the show. The bottom line however is that when the power of the three vocalists combine, which is on pretty much every song, the listener is treated to endless peaks with no valleys in sight.
Waveriders this is an album you need to own/experience. Emperor Of Sand rockets out of the gate with "Sultan's Curse" and doesn't let up until the closing notes of the epic final track "Jaguar God". If you're a long-standing Mastodon fan this record won't disappoint, and if you've never investigated Mastodon and want to know why so many people adore this band Emperor Of Sand is a fantastic introduction!
Thursday, May 25, 2017
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Ragin' Ripple Sale Happening now! Plus Steak, Doublestone and the new Thin Lizzy Tribute with Mothership!
Time for a huge, ragin' Ripple sale! Let's clear some space in the warehouse for some new, killer releases comin' down the line. While supplies last: $5 CD's and $7 LP's on selected back catalog titles. 2xLP's as low as $10 and limited edition vinyl going for $15! If you've been dying to fill some holes in your Ripple collection, now's the time. We haven't run a sale like this in a long time, and don't know when we'll do it again, so take advantage while you can! www.ripplemusic.bigcartel.com
Steak "No God to Save" is here and the press is buzzing. "Steak have once again staked their claim to the very finest of heavy rock with ‘No God To Save‘." -- Riff Relevant. Limited Edition, Black Edition and CD's are all nearly gone as of this writing, but a scant few remain. Don't hesitate, this one really is tasty.
The Press is also buzzing about the latest offering from Danish retro-heavy psych rockers, Doublestone. Firmly in the vein of Graveyard, Uncle Acid and Kadavar, but plowing a road all their own. Organic and heavy, a true treat. Two vinyl versions and CD's still available.
Our good friends at Glory or Death Records have announced their first vinyl release, the first in their series of Bow to Your Masters tribute albums. They chose a special band to pay tribute to: Thin Lizzy. They've got some killer bands, including three from the Ripple family so far (Mothership, Mos Generator and Red Wizard - with more to come!) putting their unique spins on classic Lizzy songs:
Mos Generator (Seattle)
High on Fire (Oakland)
White Dog (Austin)
Red Wizard (San Diego)
Slow Season (San Diego)
KOOK (San Jose)
Great Electric Quest (Oceanside)
Sacri Monti (Encinitas)
Harsh Toke (San Diego)
The Kickstarter featuring limited vinyl and art packages ends on 5/30/17.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
Back in the late eighties an Australian friend of mine, whom I've sadly lost touch with since, sent me a cassette of a Sydney-based band. It was their self-titled debut and the band in question was Noiseworks. At this point in time, this five-piece were completely unknown to me and based off of the artwork, a photo of the band against a white backdrop with the logo above, I had no clue what to expect. However, once the music started I was sold - hook, line and sinker!
Australian rock and pop of the eighties had a particular sound. Can't honestly describe it in words but to this day that sound is very identifiable in a good way. And Noiseworks are not exempt of this. They deftly embrace their heritage while going full tilt with awesome hooks, great lyrics and a lot of emotion. What baffles me is that the guys were labeled a pub rock band. Maybe that was the case in their infant years but ‘Noiseworks’ is anything but. Then again, we all look at things differently.
Several permeating features throughout ‘Noiseworks’ are, amongst other things, the prominent bass guitar. It keeps the rhythm but at the same time goes off on it’s own excursions, which gives the music more substance. The guitar tone is airy, free and floating both in the riffs and the lead work. And the way it tag teams with the keyboard is refreshing. Almost like a twin-axe attack. Lastly, Jon Stevens’ voice is something else. Beautiful, yet desperate with great range which brings out the meaning in the lyrics perfectly.
This is a great debut album through and through with no low points at all. Still, as always, I find some tracks that stands out more than the others. ‘Burning Feeling’ is a mid-tempo rocker with hooks to kill about yearning for an adrenaline rush no matter what. A heartfelt plea for forgiveness and redemption ‘Take Me Back’ hits home with anyone who’s lost someone and it’s irreversible, forever. ‘No Lies’ picks up the pace as the band ponders the devious ways of an ex-partner who’s pulls out all the stops to reel you back into a bad relationship. ‘River Of Tears’ tells the tale of finding yourself while watching others, maybe a loved one, remain in limbo not wanting to change. ‘Welcome To The World’ is a song telling two sides of the coin. One child is born into a nice safe world being fed from a golden spoon, while another is born to fight. Stand up and make a difference wherever you come from.
Despite not having released any studio albums since ‘Love vs. Money’ in 1991, Noiseworks have been active on and off with various old and new members. The latest I heard the ‘Noiseworks’ lineup was back and recorded an album slated for a 2016 release but as far as I know that wax is still locked up in a vault somewhere.
In between all this bassist Balbi and keyboardist Stanley formed the semi-successful Electric Hippies before working with David Bowie, Tom Jones and Michael Hutchence(Balbi) and Beck, Eric Clapton, Sheryl Crow and Prince(Stanley). Singer Jon Stevens has, besides a long solo career, worked with INXS and Jesus Christ Superstar, as well as forming the music collective The Dead Daisies, whom he no longer performs with.
Monday, May 22, 2017
“…The Flying Eyes appeared and cast their hypnotic power over the crowd.”
Ripple Music is thrilled to welcome Baltimore's heavy psych rockers, The Flying Eyes, to it's roster of the best of modern heavy psych, stoner, doom and heavy rock.
The Flying Eyes name comes from a 1962 science fiction novel about giant, disembodied eyes that descend from outer space to control humanity...
Since forming ten years ago, they have released four albums, several 7" singles, and toured the world, supporting bands such as Dead Meadow, The Raveonettes, The Black Angels and Dan Auerbach among others. The Flying Eyes have achieved a notable following in Europe with extensive club touring and festival appearances. Highlights include: Burg Herzberg Festival (sharing the main stage with Jeff Beck and Hawkwind), Rockpalast Crossroads Festival, Stoned From The Underground (DE), Desert Fest Belgium (BE), Trutnov Open Air (CZ) as well as the Synchronicity Festival in India.
After extensive touring in South America, playing shows and festivals in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay, they linked up with producer Gabriel Zander (Mars Red Sky) at Super Fuzz Studio in Rio de Janeiro to record their upcoming Ripple Music debut album Burning of the Season. Season is a return to the band’s roots of fuzzed-out blues and soulful psychedelia with the maturity and craftsmanship of age. Coming out this fall on Ripple Music (US and non-European Territories), it is their heaviest statement to date.
California-based Ripple Music is one of the world's leading record labels for heavy rock, heavy psych, stoner and doom. Ripple Music is distributed world-wide by MVD Distributors, as well as H'art, Plastichead, Borders, Suburban, Goodfellows and more. All releases are available on the Ripple Website and Ripple Music Bandcamp. Check out www.ripple-music.com for more info and news.
Sunday, May 21, 2017
“Led Into Temptation” is the sophmore release from British band Midnight Messiah. Formed by Phil Denton (guitars) and Paul Taylor (vocals) from the ashes of NWOBHM cult favorites Elixir. Like it's predecessor, “Root of All Evil” - “Led into Temptation” has the sort of NWOBHM vibe but it , in fact the song “The Sinner Must Die” starts off with a moody into very reminiscent of Elixir's “Llagaren” from the “Sovereign Remedy” album.
I can go through every track and say “This sounds like Judas Priest, this sounds like Thin Lizzy...” yes Midnight Messiah wear their influences proudly. Just a sample lyric from “Hellbound” -”They Tell me Hell Ain't a bad place to be” - any band that cites Bon Scott era AC/DC has a special place in my heart. “Second Coming” has a dual guitar solo very similar to Judas Priest's “Freewheel Burning”. “Go to the Light” has an anthemic chorus like all the 80's Scorpions songs....see? “While Heaven Bleeds” is Dio-era Sabbath. There's nothing wrong with paying tribute to the bands that helped shape ones musical direction. There's cowbell on the intro to the otherwise very heavy “Merry Widow” - how cool is that?? HEAVY METAL COWBELL!!!
To be honest, it's going to be hard to write a non biased review of this CD. I've loved everything I've heard from the Elixir family from the second they took the stage in NJ 11 years ago and my jaw fell on the floor when I heard the opening notes of “Star of Beshaan”.
The biggest compliment I can give is if I ever get good enough and form my own band they won't sound very much different than Midnight Messiah. This is recommended for fans of the classics – but again with a modern twist and modern production.
Midnight Mesiah are:
Paul Taylor – vocals
Phil Denton – guitars, bass, keyboards
Darren Lee – Drums
Dave Strange – Lead Guitar on tracks 3, 4, 5, 10 & 11
Led into Temptation
The Merry Widow
Go to the Light
Return of the King
While Heaven Bleeds
Right Place, Wrong Time
King of the Night (2017 remix)
Find Midnight Messiah online:
Photos by Electric Eye Photography.