Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Shooting Guns - Flavour Country Out Now!

Shooting Guns provide the perfect soundtrack for the morning after the apocalypse, when you are sitting in the rubble of your home in a bathrobe and think, ‘What should I do now?’ and end up zoning out for hours in a psychedelic trance instead of making a survival plan. Bad move on your part, because you are probably going to die.

Canadian sextet Shooting Guns is known (and oft-nominated) for their film soundtrack work, but Flavour Country is more like a collection of anthems for your jettison from this universe into the multiverse.

While they’re known for heavy and saturated sounds befitting crazed horror-comedy flicks like Netflix hit WolfCop, Flavour Country features some of the band’s fastest, heaviest and most visceral material to date. Yet, it also features some of the band’s most atmospheric sounds as well.

At times there are slight hints of Ennio Morricone’s Spaghetti Western twang amidst the looping Meddle-era Pink Floyd heavy psych and driving drone reminiscent of Bobby Beausoleil’s belladonna laced soundtrack to Kenneth Anger’s Lucifer Rising. But for the most part here, Shooting Guns is out for blood, regardless of tempo.

Album opener “Ride Free” kicks off with a blistering wall of guitars blaring and rattling out of the gate like mutant progeny to fellow Canadian biker-rock heroes Steppenwolf having duly fired all of the guns, exploded into space and returned to hunt down every last one of us. It accelerates from there: “French Safe” sounds like an unhinged battalion of musicians driving full throttle like a scene from a George Miller Road Warrior movie. Biting, lengthier tracks like “Simian Shelf” and the title track occupy the heavy end of the psychedelic spectrum, haunting the foggy moor between early, bluesy Sabbath-styled doom riffery and heavy pulse-riding kraut-rock.

Flavour Country is the first album recorded by the band themselves at their own Pre-Rock Studios in Saskatoon, SK, located in the middle of the Canadian prairies. The album title’s spelling is itself a nod to the band’s Great White North homeland. The album was mastered by John McBain (ex-Monster Magnet, Carlton Melton), who also mastered the band’s previous RidingEasy releases.

Shooting Guns have toured over 60,000 miles across Canada over the past 7 years but have yet to tour Internationally, which will be a big focus for them after this release. They are touring their live score to F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu across Canada throughout 2017 and also just finished scoring the soundtrack to Another WolfCop (sequel to WolfCop), which is slated for a US theatrical release in Sept 2017. Their sophomore LP, Brotherhood of the Ram, released in 2013 through RidingEasy Records was nominated for the 2015 JUNO Metal/Hard Album of the Year as well as the Polaris Music Prize. Their debut LP, Born To Deal in Magic: 1952-1976, was also nominated for the Polaris Music Prize in 2012.

Give them a listen...

WORWS to Release New Album, 'Truth to Power', September 22

Portland, OR extreme metal band WORWS (read: Wars) will release its new album, Truth to Power, on September 22. The follow-up to the band's 2016 debut, Laylines, the impending LP delivers pulverizing crossover that combines grindcore, powerviolence and d-beat with a fever-pitch intensity. Truth to Power is advanced by the record's hammer-drop title track, a violent, lightening-quick assault condensed into pure aggression. Stream WORWS' new song "Truth to Power" at THIS location.

WORWS' raw sincerity, take no prisoners live show and D.I.Y. work ethic has earned the band a vast loyal following and shows alongside scene stalwarts such as OFF!, Trap Them and Today is the Day. Formed in 2015, the band established a sharp-edged sound and focused modus operandi, attacking societal wrongs and ignorance. With Death, The Wipers and Slayer reigning over their record collections alongside contemporaries such as Ceremony and Defeater, WORWS has waded their way through the oppression of the working class and are here to fight.

   Track listing:

   1.) Belfast
   2.) Lot Lizards
   3.) Standing in Place
   4.) Love to Hate
   5.) Truth to Power (listen HERE)
   6.) Sheltering Hands
   7.) Lights Out
   8.) Consumer Bachelor

   Pre-order Truth to Power at THIS location.
WORWS features Tony Meuser (vocals), Sean Cisneros (guitar), Dusty Overstreet (bass) and Sean Carter (drums). Follow the band on Facebook.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein

In an attempt to get viewers going with lively comment interactions, Pitchfork recently asked which television show old or new has the best music. Naturally I jumped right in and tagged The Hilarious House of Frightenstein enforcing my belief on several readers who may or may not have heard of such a show. Here's why I'm still obsessed with my favorite tv show, that I relentlessly watched as a kid, all these years later.

Billy Van.  Toronto born, quadruple threat and mastermind behind one of the greatest children's television programs of all fucking time. The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein operated in uncharted territory for its time and lured in countless Canadian children like myself with its multidimensional spook show spectacles.             

Van himself played six characters and forever had me entranced as the silly yet sweet 'Grizelda, The Ghastly Gourmet' (nutrition), 'The Librarian' who actually terrified me (literature), 'The Oracle' (astrology) who I always wanted to write a letter to so they'd read it on air and shout me out. Then there was 'Wolfman Jack' (music/arts) the resident castle DJ who inspires me to this very day with his quintessential 60's & 70's playlists and his super psychedelic dancing backdrops he shared with Igor, the massive sidekick to 'The Count', (the star).   The opening intro is still unmatched today thanks to Vincent Price, and each character added their own distinct flavor to the mix.  Billy Van and THHOF crew made television history.

So whenever someone asks me which tv show I think has the best music I immediately think of Igor and The Wolfman dancing to Midnight Confessions from The Grass Roots, or Strawberry Alarm Clock's Incense and Peppermints. I'm forever grateful Billy Van and the team included rock and roll as part of a healthy child's brain development. It's made my world what it is today.  I hope you check out THHOF and journey back to a time when tv was made by eccentric music lovers and passionate creators who fearlessly worked their magic on small budgets and limited transmitters.

-Miss Melissa

Monday, August 14, 2017

Faith In Jane - Rhythm Of Elevation

I have to admit it took me a minute to grasp Faith In Jane's latest album, 'Rhythm Of Elevation'. But after two or three spins this release opened up and a beautiful gem presented itself to me. And I duly kicked my own ass for not getting it at first. But that's how it is sometimes. Better late than never though, which I am thankful for, because this Maryland trio has created an amazing recording!

Going for a mainly bluesy, jam-filled version of stoner rock, there’s more to it than that. Subtle nuances allow the songs to take on a whole different life, small tweaks here and there. And that’s what makes this album stand out. Hell, they threw in ‘Passage’, a bluegrass-tinged song and it works so well. These guys aren’t reinventing the wheel but they take what they have and what they know and throw it in a cauldron. Adding excellent musicianship to the concoction, their stew doesn’t have to cook long at all before it is ready. The end result? ‘Rhythm Of Elevation’!

Chaotic, crawling and punishing, opener ‘The Ritual’ sets the record straight right away. Taking no prisoners, Faith In Jane are relentless as they unleash one of the most metal-sounding tracks on this album. ‘Trip And Watch The World Burn’ brings out the bluesy, jam stuff coupled with doomy undertones. Clocking in at almost 11 minutes it weaves back and forth between mid-tempo to faster paced rocking giving you time to watch our world disintegrate. Oh, just let the amazing solo little over halfway through wash over you and cleanse you from any kind poison…wonderful, indeed! Stoner blues at its finest, ‘Mushroom Man’ is a bulldozer trip and a half. Led-heavy and spaced out, this composition crushes everything over and over and I just come back for more. Despite punctured lungs and broken ribs I give in to the world according to Faith In Jane and constantly ask for more. ‘Passage’ is the oddball here, being a bluegrass ditty, but it fits in so well and that’s another beauty of this band.

‘Daze Of High Adventure’ is not only the longest song, over 14 and a half minutes, it is also Faith In Jane’s barnburner. Everything this band is has been blended together excellently here. Stoner, doom, jam and blues. Fantastic! ‘Farewell’ is a beautiful eulogy about dearly departed and musically it is akin to the great Southern Rock bands like The Allman Brothers fronted by the late Andrew Wood of Mother Love Bone. Amazing and again, listen to that solo! ‘Return’ closes out ‘Rhythm Of Elevation’ and is another headtrip, and then some. These guys knows how to help you on the way to astral traveling and this track is the key to that. Close your eyes, sit back and go! Faith In Jane will show you amazing things.


 Photo Credit: Shane Gardner


Sunday, August 13, 2017

A Ripple Conversation With Mick Of The Hazytones

When I was a kid, growing up in a house with Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, and Simon and Garfunkel, the first time I ever heard Kiss's "Detroit Rock City," it was a moment of musical epiphany. It was just so vicious, aggressive and mean. It changed the way I listened to music. I've had a few minor epiphany's since then, when you come across a band that just brings something new and revolutionary to your ears.

What have been your musical epiphany moments?

My parents were always listening to old 60's, 70's rock, so I grew up with Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, The Doors, The Beatles, The Stones. It's really when I got in high school (when your 12 years old in Quebec) that I dug deeper into those bands, listening to their full albums and getting into it. A Funny moment was when, back in high school, we were all doing skateboard, one of the guys had Misfits stickers and he was saying it was a skate brand. The guy next to us said: Hey stupid, it's an old school punk band. I became good friends with that guy, we started our first band and he got me into metal bands like, Black Sabbath, Metallica, Megadeth, and also Nirvana. That's how it all started.

Talk to us about the song-writing process for you. What comes first, the idea? A riff? The lyrics? How does it all fall into place?

I write with the Kurt Cobain method, melodies first always. At any given moment you can write a cool riff but it's when you get a strong vocal melody over it that you know you're holding something. I will usually write the lyrics long after the song is complete, usually a little bit before we hit the studio. I always have temporary lyrics for singing live but it's in the studio that it all comes together. I always thought I was weird doing so but I reed in a lot of my favorite artists bio that they did the same.

Who has influenced you the most?

The Beatles had a strong influence on me, not just because of their music but their whole career. Seeing them evolve from unknown guys living in Liverpool to one of the best songwriters of all time really influenced me. Reading their bio they seemed like taking influences from wherever and it led to some really great albums (sgt. peppers, abbey road). I later got into the stoner scene (Kyuss, Uncle Acid, Sleep...) which really influenced me to start the Hazytones.

Where do you look for continuing inspiration? New ideas, new motivation?

Inspirations comes from a lot of place, long nights of insomnia, touring, relationships. I'm also inspired by all the great stoner rock music coming out these days, the scene is so strong and they are so many good bands getting their music out there. Motivation comes from the fact that I really like being on a stage and on the road.

We're all a product of our environment. Tell us about the band's hometown and how that reflects in the music?

Montreal is a great place to start a band, this city probably has as many musician's as people who go to gigs, which leads to a really big amount of bands playing every night. This gives you a feeling that, when you think your band is great, you go out to gigs and see those amazing bands and you tell yourself; I got to get tighter and practice my scenic presence and write better songs. I sometimes feel that Montreal would have been the Seattle of the 2000's if the music industry had stayed the same.

Where'd the band name come from?

We had been trying to find a good name for at least a month. We did a show under the name Stoneage (lol). I wanted to have a stoner reference in the name, Frey suggested the Baritones over facebook and it made me think about Hazytones. Right then and there we kept it and it felt right

You have one chance, what movie are you going to write the soundtrack for?

I'm a big fan of old westerns (Sergio Leone, Clint Eastwood, Tarantino) but the music on those movies is already pretty good! So I would say the next film by Tarantino, I would love to do some desert rock/stoner on one of Tarantino's or even Scorsese!

You now write for a music publication (The Ripple Effect?).  You're going to write a 1,000 word essay on one song. Which would it be and why?

Probably Marked by the Devil, cause it's a metaphoric dark vision of life that I enjoy singing live. I assume people can relate to it in any ways they want.

Come on, share with us a couple of your great, Spinal Tap, rock and roll moments?

Well there are so many things that I can't say in an interview (lol). Touring is all about the after party's in my opinion. If you don't enjoy the after show's well it must be tough to be on the road. One night on our last tour we were playing in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, not a big town. I could not find a venue so we ended up in a library with 3 other bands. I managed to get a liquor license to sell in 30 minutes (gotta love Saskatchewan), so obviously we got drunk. Just when we started our set about 8 stoner kids walked in and knew all of our lyrics. They invited us for a crazy after party at their place. This is what makes the road fun, you never know what to expect.

Tell us about playing live and the live experience for you and for your fans?

Playing live is something magical almost spiritual. Nothing else compares to a band and an audience connecting. What's great about being on tour is when you play your set every night, you start to improvise some things but you feel confident about them. What makes a great live experience is when the crowd turns you on (we usually end up acting crazy on stage when that happens) which then turns the crowd on. I think nothing beats this feeling.

What makes a great song?

I think good hooks will make a great song. A lot of things can be a hook, a great riff, a good melody or the arrangements. But you need something that, from the first listen will make you go; what is this I'm hearing, it caught my attention. I think you have to stay away from having a sound that is too similar to somethings that's been made. I am not saying our music is reinventing anything but I want people to recognize the Hazytones sound as soon as they hear a couple of notes.

Tell us about the first song you ever wrote?
What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

Well I am definitely not proud of the first songs I wrote. To me my first real album was The Hazytones. And we wrote the music when the band was fairly new so, I am really eager to get a second album out. I feel like this one is really going to be the album of a lifetime, now that we gained a lot of experience with the first album and the touring.

Who today, writes great songs? Who just kicks your ass? Why?

Josh Homme is really doing great at the moment, I think he's a really talented songwriter. I think King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard are on the right track too, releasing so much new material like they were a 60's band gives me hope that the market is big enough for lot's of new music. Ty Segall is also a good example, he gets involved in multiple projects, he's always touring, and he has killer material. Also a big shout to smaller stoner bands like Elephant Tree, Black Mastifs, and Mothership (which is becoming huge).

Vinyl, CD, or digital? What's your format of choice?

Vinyl to me, is the only real format for listening to music the way it was meant. It is the only format that is going to make you listen to the albums the way the artist wanted you to listen to it. Digital is made a bit more for ''hits''. Nowadays if you have one strong hit on an bad album your band can still get a lot of exposure but it will never be as rewarding as having a good full length.

Whiskey or beer?  And defend your choice

Whiskey!!! If all venues could bring me coca-cola, whiskey and ice I would be a happy cat. I'm a big fan of bourbon and old fashions too. The problem with whiskey is if you have only 2 drink tickets, you will last longer with two pints than two whiskey coke.

We, at the Ripple Effect, are constantly looking for new music. What's your home town, and when we get there, what's the best record store to lose ourselves in?

I grew up in a really small town with no record store. But if you're in Montreal check out ''La table tournante'' (the turn table) it's the best in the city in my opinion.

What's next for the band?

More touring cause we enjoy it so much. We want to hit the U.S.A in January and Europe again in April. Between those tour we will work on an second album that is 60-70% written.

Any final comments or thoughts you'd like to share with our readers, the waveriders?

Continue to support emerging bands and go see them live! You guys are making bands go somewhere. I am really thrilled with the ''stoner'' community, you guys are rad and I love you all.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Bandcamp Bonanza – Don’t Judge Me

Do you ever feel like people are judging you by what kind of music you listen to? No need to worry here, we only judge folks by what they aren’t listening to for the most part. These albums here make part of some more of the best music you’re not listening to and it’s our mission to change that. Let’s kick things right into gear with one of the heaviest outings of the season so far. Not only is it heavy but its mandatory vinyl worthy being released this weekend on STB Records. Olde are not that old, in fact this is their sophomore album with an EP release late in 2016 in preparation for the new album Temple. Head over the the STB bandcamp page as there are still vinyl pre-orders up for sale, which is rare for the label. I grabbed a die hard edition. You will shit your pants when you see the covers to these die-hards STB is putting out, worth it for the cover alone.

Olde – Temple
This may very well be the heaviest album of the year. Primal, doom-ridden hypnotic sludge metal with earth shaking rhythm and skull cracking groove.

Since we started off with the heaviest album I’ve featured so far this year, we’ll keep it in ascending order in terms of blatant abuse. Next up comes a fine album and third full length by Texas rockers Greenbeard called Lödarödböl.

They say the third time is the charm and Greenbeard have proven that statement with their latest offering. The Texas trio have taken their blistering stoner riffage to new heights melting faces with bluesy psychedelia, precision vocal tones and a radiant progression of song craft. The artwork continues on the theme of badassery with another example of supremacy. You can't afford not to grab the 1st press on vinyl.Favorite track: Wyrm.

The next album is a new discovery for myself and popped up just earlier this week on the good old bandcamp feed courtesy of Mr. Steve Woodier host of The Shrieks From Below blog. Although he has a tendency to sport some of the most horrendously brutal albums on the feed, he also has some of the best ears in bandcamp and snatches up even some soft rockers from time to time. This time he recommended Have Blue and their new album Melted Mind. Its title hits the spot as your skull will be smoking shortly after the first song riffs start blazing.

Have Blue have melted my mind with a heavy dose of acidic fuzz resulting in possible death by electrocution.

This is where it’s okay to put your judging suit on. The Judge just released Tell it to the Judge, their sophomore album via the one and only Ripple Music and it’s been adjourning our free time with retro glazed riffs ever since. It’s probably a good idea to grab the limited vinyl to go with your copy of the debut re-released by Ripple last year.

Me: Your honor, the vintage melody is jammed with psychedelic flavoring, the solo ballads blaze with heavy blues and the vocals croon like a moonlit howl of a werewolf. I haven't heard riffs this ornery since 1975.

Judge: Says here you were born in 81'. Guilty on all counts. I sentence you to mandatory vinyl treatment. Lock him away in Ripple purgatory boys.

Me: Thank you your honor.

This one I haven’t been able to stop playing lately. Its go such an infectious buzz to it. Take a listen for yourself. The Moonshine Brand – Welcome to Gypsy Town is name your price and I’ll be judging when I don’t see your profile pic pitched under the album cover on bandcamp.
I love the guitar tone paired with the jangly vocal haze. Mind expanding melodies gently strewn among spiritual, surf-stricken blues.

We’ll finish off this week’s edition with a killer album coming from way down south in Argentina sung in their native tongue and honking their horns to the stoner realm with pride.  Montaña Electrica - Selvas y Trópicos should be taken seriously. Don’t be scared of the Spanish lyrics because the music is a rocking good time.
I'm a sucker for a good horn, especially injected in a soulful capacity to the tune of a smooth psychedelic rock act. Never mind the language barrier, these cats got it going on.

As always let us know what you think, tell a friend, go to a show. If not for all of us camping out here in the underground, the world would be a less enjoyable place. When your friends are judging you over your loud music, turn it up louder and tune it down lower. Bonanza judges only those who do not listen.

-The Huntsman

Friday, August 11, 2017

Final Pagan Altar album “The Room of Shadows” to be released in August 2017

Temple of Mystery are extremely delighted of announcing that we have sealed a pact with NWOBHM/Doom legends PAGAN ALTAR to release the LP/CD and cassette version of their final album, “The Room of Shadows” on August 24th, 2017.

Pagan Altar are one of the originators of doomy NWOBHM, mixing their 70’s influences into occult-tinged heavy metal. Alongside bands like Witchfinder General and Legend, their very own unique breed of mystical doom metal was unfortunately sunk into obscurity after no interest were shown from labels. Despite that, the timelessness of their music ultimately prevailed as doom-obsessed fanatics kept Pagan Altar’s music alive over two and a half decades by trading their self-titled demo cassette and even bootlegging it. After receiving so much interest from the underground scene, the original master tapes were re-released in 1998 and re-christened Volume 1. The band then reformed in 2004 and released two albums of re-recorded materials – namely “Lords of Hypocrisy” and “Mythical and Magical”. These two records proved to be the best and most exciting releases of the genre, and brought the band to international attention. They have since played numerous shows, traveling ashore to Canada and the United States, as well as everywhere in Europe. The songs for the long awaited “The Room of Shadows” were originally written back in 2004-2005, and the album was set to be released as “Never Quite Dead” in 2014… until the tragic passing of their beloved frontman Terry Jones, who had been bravely battling cancer for a year prior. The album will thus be released in homage to this true gentleman, who was well loved by his treasured family and fans.

Having being heavily postponed for various reasons, the recordings of this album were completely re-done with Alan Jones on guitar, and former Pagan Altar members Diccon Harper on bass and Andy Green on drums. “The Room of Shadows” picks up where Mystical and Magical left, and admirers of their previous works will be pleased to hear that this album is just as timeless, with its epic riffs and enchanting, poetic macabre lyrics of olde, plunging the album in an aura of somber allure.

The Room of Shadows will be their fourth and final album but their legacy is sure to reverberate for eternity.

Release party at Wings of Metal Festival:

Alan Jones, Diccon Harper and Andy Green, under the moniker “Time Lord” will be paired with session members Brandon Radigan (vocals – Magic Circle) and Andres Arango (second guitar – Cauchemar, Metalian), to play a special release party/tribute to Terry in Montreal at the Wings of Metal show on September 9th, 2017.

A rare video of a 1984 live show was unearthed by Alan Jones for the occasion:

Pre-orders for Pagan Altar – “Room of Shadows” (TEMPLE-005) will be available in early July at

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Kyberox – Go Slow

So there's this new band around town called Kyberox. My town being Tacoma. If you've been around my town for awhile, some of these musicians will be familiar to you. You might have seen them with CFA or Argonaut or Chrono Bats, and that pedigree will give you some idea of what you might expect. You really need to check them out, though, because like any kind of new combination, there's always something unexpected.

I think it's great that this band has gotten 4 tracks written, recorded and out for our listening pleasure in such a short amount of time. The band describes their sound as influenced by KYUSS, Acid King, The Sword and John Williams. I can hear all of those. A lot of what I hear is doom, but with all kinds of interesting little things pulled in to the mix. If you are looking for straight up doom, this is not your band, but if you, like me, dig it when bands find ways to drag all kinds of influences into what you do, you need to hear this band.

“Strawberry Wizard” is a winner, both in terms of the name of the track and the music performed. It starts with a riff, like all good music should, and then the whole band kicks in like a sledgehammer to the chest, and it's on. Low and slow leads to something a little faster, back and forth between the two. The fuzz swirls around you like the smoke from a shaman's sacred fire and pulls you into the heaviness. Ride the riff and let it take you on your own vision quest.

“Blast” is the final track and it pulls together the best things of the previous three songs to wrap things up quite nicely. I dare you to listen to this one and not get the head nod going. I love it when bands can be heavy like this but still manage to get a nice groove going. The bands uses soft/loud dynamics, some cool guitar effects, and great lyrics to make this song a nice showcase for what they do.

This is a very good first step for a band that's only been together for a few months and I'm really looking forward to seeing them progress and grow. If they can come up with music this good right out of the gates they have a very bright future in the world of heavy.


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Heavy Metal Welcomes You!

Growing up in a small town in a house where Rock and Roll was considered “the Devils’ music” and even the Bee Gees were considered risqué, I was not exposed to a lot of choices when it came to music.  There were only 2 kinds of music according to my dad, County and Western.  The rest was garbage.  I rebelled, of course, by listening to Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, The Beatles and even Tom Petty, but that’s about as far as I would push it.  Needless to say, this turned me into a person who shied away from anything “heavy”.  

Sure, I liked the old-school rock and roll like AC/DC and Van Halen.  They were super edgy from my narrow point of view, taboo in my house growing up and something you only heard at a friend’s house.  So, as you can imagine, I had never been to a heavy metal show, nor listened to the music. Even though I had never experienced it, I made a decision early on that I just knew it wouldn’t be for me.  It took until I was in my early 40’s for everything to change. 

When my new boyfriend told me he owned a Heavy Metal record label called Ripple Music, I was less than enthused.  The idea of listening to this music was not appealing to me at all, but I really liked him and thought I should at least give it a try.  My opportunity to expand my horizons came a couple of weeks later when he invited me to go listen to this band he and his partner, Todd, were thinking of signing called Zed.  My first reaction internally was “I can sit through a few songs to spend time with this cool guy”, so with a lot of trepidation, I went to see Zed.   

We were meeting my boyfriend’s partner, his wife and the band at the restaurant before the show. Great, I thought, an even more intimate setting for me to be really out of place in!  My first impression of the guys in this band was that they looked a bit scary, intimidating and I would have nothing to talk to them about.  I didn’t really know Todd or his wife, Corinne, either.  So, I sat quietly watching them interact.  My boyfriend, who I knew as John but they called Pope for some reason, introduced me and we sat down to eat burgers together.  What I found in a very short amount of time is that my impression of these people and the band in general could not have been more wrong.  Todd and Corrine were warm and welcoming to me, even though I felt it was obvious I felt completely out of place.

The guys from Zed were funny, smart, engaging and interesting conversationalists.  I found myself relaxing and feeling comfortable in this world that, before that night, was so foreign to me.  Once dinner was over it was time to watch them perform and once again I thought, there is no way I will enjoy this, but I really like these people so it will be cool to see them do their thing!  Once again I was wrong.  What I found was that I enjoyed the show very much.  It was energetic, fun and before long I felt myself moving to the music. 

After the show, I was baffled and shocked at how this one night, this one band had completely changed everything I believed about this music forever.  If you had told me I would ever be in the front row of a Heavy Metal show throwing devil horns before that night, I would have said you had lost your mind but today that is where you can find me quite often and I couldn’t be happier.  I am forever grateful to Zed for being the wonderful people and musicians they are, and I am so very happy to call them friends. I learned a valuable lesson about staying open-minded that has translated to all kinds of different and wonderful life experiences.


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Lord - Blacklisted

For a band who was on the brink of extinction only a few years ago, Lord is a Phoenix Rising. Instead of rolling over and dying, they revamped and are now putting out top shelf record after top shelf record. The never-say-die attitude of founder Willy Rivera and his el compadre, Steven Kerchner, flows rapidly through Lord's veins. As is extremely vivid in the new wax, 'Blacklisted'.

More aggressive than ever, Lord brings out the much-imposed destruction of Mother Earth, as well as the powers behind all this. But that’s not all, they also focus on the beacons within this mayhem. Beacons who work hard at making a difference, who try to instill a different way of thinking in people but also to make them realize Armageddon is coming. Quickly. At 500mph. So unless we stand up and make things change, all the Rothschilds and Rockefellers will continue to rape our world.

The brutal and heavy opener ‘Mile After Mile’ is a very gripping song about one such light in the darkness. It features Tattoo Tom Mitchell on vocals, screams et al who started the organization Stillbrave Childhood Cancer Foundation, when his daughter Shayla sadly passed away after a long brave fight against Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Not wanting to give up being brave like she was, his aim with this organization is to help children who are fighting cancer, as well as helping their families in any kind of way. One thing Tattoo Tom does to raise awareness to the cause is run 100 mile and 200 mile marathons. Depending on the distance he brings either 100 or 200 photos of children still fighting cancer or whom have sadly lost the fight. And this song is about running such a marathon but also it is about these very brave and strong children.

The second song to bring forth warriors is ‘The Heart Of A Hero’. Bleak and minimalistic musically, it focuses lyrically on people fighting on the barricades trying to bring hope and light into this crazy world we live. In this case it’s about a woman standing up for children in bad situations, when no one else will. No matter the cost to herself. Selfishness is evaporated and replaced by true empathy, something which is severely lacking in our society today.

Now, the remaining 4 tracks are about lies, corruption, wars, talking behind backs and belittling, shunning and blindness from the safety of your couch…amongst many things! Things that all bring downfall on us all. Just check out the brilliance of ‘They Lied!’, ‘The Bandage’, ‘Blacklisted’ and ‘Not Your Problem?’ and you have a spot on social commentary brought with a venomous tongue and at a furious speed. Fucking brilliant!

Lord tells it like it is, there’s no sugar coating anything and it shouldn’t be either. Social injustice, abuse and neglect cannot be ignored if more of us take notice and stand up. If not, we’re all fucked. Lord has done an amazing job creating this beast and I am so happy they kept going when things looked bad. We need them since their music is fantastic and they are not afraid to speak their mind! Thank you guys!


Monday, August 7, 2017

The Necromancers Unveil new Track of Upcoming Album, Servants of the Salem Girl.

Hailing from Poitiers in western France, the quartet will release their debut album Servants of the Salem Girl on 18th August through the Californian label, which has already proven itself to be a respected mainstay for fans of rock, stoner, doom and psych in 2017 with releases from Mothership, Wo Fat, Steak, Vokonis and many others.

Drawing on antiquated inspirations in mythology, religion, fantastical tales from European literature and an obsession for classic horror cinema, The Necromancers are a curious alliance of musicians, and together are a strange beast to behold. Experimenting with progressive rock, heavy psych and the 70s pagan/proto-metal of bands like Black Sabbath and Coven, they take these influences, throw in the urgency of NWOBHM and douse the entire lot in lysergic illusions. All with a mind to create a debut album for the ages.

Having performed at many of Europe’s largest metal and rock festivals the band also toured Europe recently with London-based stoner rockers Elephant Tree and are set to embark on a short tour later this year with Monkey 3.

“The band is still young,” explains vocalist and guitar player Tom Cornière. “We never would have thought of signing with a label like Ripple. We could hardly have hoped for better. It’s an honour and a surprise. Now, we are looking forward to the next tour and to be able to share our album wherever we can.”

Servants of the Salem Girl by The Necormancers is released though Ripple Music on 18th August 2017 in limited edition, multi-coloured vinyl and worldwide in a black vinyl edition, as well as on CD and digital.  Check out the new track below and pop over to Ripple Music at to get physical or for digital.  

The Necromancers:
Tom Cornière – Vocals, Guitar
Robin Genais – Lead Guitar
Simon Evariste – Bass Guitar
Benjamin Rousseau – Drums

Sunday, August 6, 2017

A Ripple Conversation With Elias Of The Flying Eyes

When I was a kid, growing up in a house with Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, and Simon and Garfunkel, the first time I ever heard Kiss's "Detroit Rock City," it was a moment of musical epiphany. It was just so vicious, aggressive and mean. It changed the way I listened to music. I've had a few minor epiphany's since then, when you come across a band that just brings something new and revolutionary to your ears.

What have been your musical epiphany moments?

Conversely, it was the first time I heard Simon and Garfunkel. As and adolescent I was listening to a lot of shitty music of the time, nu-metal, rap-metal, top 40 hip-hop. I stumbled across my Dad's Simon and Garfunkel "Greatest Hits" and it just froze me in my tracks. Especially "The Sounds of Silence"...I'd never heard music that struck such a deep emotional chord, through the beauty of melody and the intensity of the lyrics. Yes it was mostly acoustic but it was the heaviest thing I had ever heard...But I will agree with you, that the first time I heard Neil Diamond I almost vomited.

Talk to us about the song-writing process for you. What comes first, the idea? A riff? The lyrics? How does it all fall into place?

Well purely from a drummers perspective, when the song is coming together I hear a rhythm in my head. It's very distant at first, just a pulse but as the song becomes more and more finished, I sculpt my drum parts to the shape of the song in a way that I hope best compliments it. Sometimes I have ideas for riffs and melodic changes that I hum to the other guys. The lyrics almost always come last because for us the instrumental music informs the feeling and meaning of the song. 

Where do you look for continuing inspiration? New ideas, new motivation?

In this age of political absurdity and social upheaval, I find anger to be very motivating.

You have one chance, what movie are you going to write the soundtrack for?

I would love to write the soundtrack/score for a classic horror movie i.e. The Shining, Rosemary's Baby, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Or even Get Out the best film I've seen all year, which had an awesome score...

You now write for a music publication (The Ripple Effect?).  You're going to write a 1,000 word essay on one song. Which would it be and why?

Jimi Hendrix's "1983 (A Merman I should Be)". To me it's one of the most fascinating, psychedelic masterpieces of all time. It's one of a few songs that truly takes you to another dimension, through very deliberate studio fuckery and of course master musicianship.

Come on, share with us a couple of your great, Spinal Tap, rock and roll moments?

Well there was that time where we were booked for a one off festival in India and arrived at the airport exactly 24 hours late...And then later that trip we were legitimately stranded in India for over 24 hours with no way to get home. It would have been funny if it wasn't such a financial hit...

Tell us about playing live and the live experience for you and for your fans?

Playing live makes all the bullshit of being in a band worth it. On a good night it can become a sort of healing musical therapy for the performers and the audience. On a bad night, well you gotta try and fake it at least.

What makes a great song?

Well of course I could write an essay about this, but nobody wants to read that, so I'll say this: Any collection of sounds that captures truth and beauty, that's surprising yet inevitable, that grabs you by the soul and refuses to let go.

Tell us about the first song you ever wrote?

One of the first songs The Flying Eyes ever wrote, and the first we ever release was "Lay With Me", which also turned out to be our most popular. I think we were listening to a lot of Dead Meadow at the time and I know my drum groove is feeding off that. I wrote those lyrics from the perspective of a character who can only experience love through sexual desire and possession. I didn't want to become that person, but it was definitely something I was battling at the time. We had a great time making that recording and I think it really shows. We brought in our friend Robert Karpay, who recorded a brilliant cello part during the bridge that takes the song to a whole new level. And Adam's guitar solo in the end, we stole it from a live take we had done before, slowed parts of it down, put parts in reverse, pretty much fucked it up six ways from Sunday until it sounded how we wanted it.

What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

It's a pretty strange song for us but I'm really proud of "Alive In Time" off Lowlands. It's a definite departure from most of our music, but I think it's pretty haunting. It also features our producer at the time, Rob Girardi playing a midi mellotron app on his phone...because we were all stoned and it seemed like a good idea at the time...and no one could ever tell the difference. Also some really cool bowed saw playing form Adam on that track.

Who today, writes great songs? Who just kicks your ass? Why?

On our last European tour we shared the stage with a really awesome Israeli band from our agency called Ouzo Bazooka. And there last album Simoom really blew me away. So catchy, psychedelic and heavy at the same time, with a Middle Eastern edge that I'm a sucker for:

Vinyl, CD, or digital? What's your format of choice?

Not to be a cliche audiophile, but definitely vinyl sounds if the record is in good condition. But I'm also perfectly happy listening to CDs or high quality audio files...Fuck mp3s.

Whiskey or beer?  And defend your choice..

Overall I tend to enjoy beer more often, especially when it's ice cold on a hot day and you've been walking under the sun. But coming in from a cold winter night, a fine scotch is a liquid to be reckoned with.

We, at the Ripple Effect, are constantly looking for new music. What's your home town, and when we get there, what's the best record store to lose ourselves in?

Sound Garden, Fells Point, Baltimore, Maryland, USA, Earth is the address.

What's next for the band?

After about 4 years, we finally have a new electric album coming out this fall...Details coming soon.

Any final comments or thoughts you'd like to share with our readers, the waveriders?

This band kills fascists.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Bandcamp Bonanza – Singled Out

Singles can be looked at a number of different ways in today’s digital age. Sometimes I think of them as a waste of space and that unless the band is putting out the single as physical product such as a 7-inch vinyl package, the digital single serves up little purpose as the listener can just as easily stream the entire record on any number of streaming platforms. Gone are the days of relying on the radio to expose you to a new band via the route of having a hit single to garner the mass attention. On bandcamp, I’ve seen the single a number of different ways. Today I’ve featured a few recent singles or teasers if you want to call them. Either way, the songs beckon a thirst for more and a temptation to pre-order the imminent full album.

First up we have the latest single ‘Superburn’ by a killer heavy psych band called Psychic Sun. I’m sure I’ve featured their last full length album ‘Death Rattle’ on the bonanza before but can’t quite remember. The song starts out with brooding fuzz drenching the speakers low and slow ready to torch the skin with a blistering vocal harmonies humming to the tune of Alice in Chains. The fuzzadelic riff sequence staggers between tripped out madness and high end melody as the song fades into obscurity nearing 5 minutes. Superburn gives the impression that Psychic Sun is on a mission to seduce a heavier audience with this single and surely begs for the hope of a future full length.

Staying true to the psychedelic spirit of Psychic Sun, let’s get lost in the new single by Canadian heavy psych lords ‘Biblical’ called ‘Mature Themes’. Biblical is a band that I hold in high regard and their last album ‘Monsoon Season’ topped my year end charts with its hazy combination of groovy stoner riffs and dreamy psychedelic shoegaze. I’ve had the pleasure of getting access to an early private stream of this new album and can confirm with confidence that it is going to melt your mind with an extreme overload of tripped out madness. ‘The City That Always Sleeps’ is up for preorder here and the single gives a good hint of what to expect on the new album as the music has indeed matured in the sense of traveling beyond the realm of sanity. Check out the video too if you really want to lose your shit.

Switching gears from the heavy hippy grooves and unbuckling down a dusty dirt road I’m recommending this brand new find I just stumbled upon. ‘Bucking the Tiger’ by a band called ‘Quarter Mile Thunder’ has won my heart with its dark and sultry Americana vibes. In fact, I preordered the album on wax based in part by hunch and in in full by the strength of the song available. The song has the spine tingling, hair raising tendency as the tremolo laden vocals lament to outlaw atmospherics. If you know me at all you do know that I have a sweet spot for this sort of alt-country/rock/Americana music. I am extremely excited to hear the whole album and can expect a vinyl package in the mail someday that I’ll surely forget is coming and be surprised.

Well hell, no sense in leaving the wagon trail of honky tonk dreams as there just so happens to be another twangy treasure to strum one too. That being the new single by LA rockers ‘Jesus Sons’ called ‘Livin’ Easy’. This is a true single format released on cassette tape and includes 2 songs off their upcoming full length ‘TRES’ due out this fall. Again, these guys let loose a doozy of an LP called Bring it on Home back in 2015, still available on wax, and are back with what sounds to be even more of a cattle driving affair. I have been tempted to grab the tape and will surely be kicking myself if I don’t as at the moment there are 8 left for a whopping $5 plus shipping. Check it out and break in your rope to lasso up the new one TRES out later this year.

Bringing it back home the last single for today’s feature comes from deep in the dunes of Russia from a killer band called ‘Lucifer in the Sky With Diamonds’. The new single, ‘Silent Echo’, is intense and continues on their high voltage progressive desert rock they’ve made a name for themselves with. The Red Fang resemblance remains intact this go around, and for fans of the genre I encourage you to scope these dudes out. Their last album ‘The Shining One’ was a bandcamp deep cut favorite of mine last year, and based on the new tease, the new one is going to surpass the high expectations awaiting.

Whether you love them or hate them, singles in today’s market certainly do get listened to. Whether the bands and/or labels are just trying to stick with tradition or the bands legitimately don’t have enough material written yet and want to get some buzz rolling, it’s hard to tell. One observation I’ve noticed is it seems I am much more accepting of a single if it’s part of an actual physical package such as a 2-song single on cassette or vinyl as compared to a single that is clearly just a song sitting within a full album visible to view on bandcamp. At that stage just release the whole album and give us some incentive to pre-order the full album. It’s obviously done and just rotting on the shelf in the meantime. But the most important part is to make sure the single(s) is representing who you are as a band and where you are going with the album. Nothing worse than hearing a single only to find out the full album sounds completely different. Not common, but I have seen it happen. In those cases, just wait until you are ready to release the full album and let her rip. Folks are making their way back to album listeners these days with the ease of streaming an album to preview before you buy. In order to compete with the competition you’ve got to join them and what better place to get acquainted than bandcamp.

-The Huntsman
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