Saturday, April 30, 2016

Bandcamp Bonanza – 4/20 Edition

Well it’s not 4/20 by the time this publishes, but it’s within an acceptable time frame to put that as the title for this round of bonanza fodder at camp. We know those of you that partake in the 420 festivities will be partaking regardless of the date, so cheers and happy day to all of you. The gift that keeps on giving (bandcamp) has given us more awesome albums, literally on a daily basis. Check out these fantastic albums I rummaged up recently.

Fuddge- EP
Based out of Weinsburg, Germany we have this band named Fuddge. It was a challenge getting me to push play initially just based on the name being somewhat silly. They added an extra‘d’ to avoid copyright infringement of your grandma’s baked goods at Christmas. I made the corny analogy anyway in my short review on bandcamp. This self-titled EP absolutely blew my mind when I finally got around and gave it a good listen. Plenty of styles to keep a rock fan happy including bluesy riffs, stonerized vocal howls, and psychedelic grooves aplenty. This thing shows promise like I haven’t seen in a while.

Oozing with heavy blues and glistening with jaw dropping psych, Fuddge soothe the musical craving with a mind bending fuzz fest powdered with sensational atmospherics. Eat this shit up, it's all organic and loaded with lysergic groove. Favorite track: Lilith.

THAL - Glitter
THAL, short for The Heathens Are Loose are comprised of just one man believe it or not. I did not realize that upon purchase, nor until after nearly a dozen listens later reading an interview on the blog page Metal Nexus here talking with the mastermind Vince Green about the project. Anyhow, whether or not you read the cool interview you should make sure and find some time to listen to this album. It played on repeat for almost a full week upon discovery and still gives me that love and feeling like the first time the burning riffs and intoxicating vocals graced my speakers. Below my mini-review starts off with a line from one of the songs, just letting you know. I just couldn’t resist getting weird. The album is amazing in every sense of the word.

This is your homework Larry. The fucking Heathens Are Loose with a wildly melodic fuzz, pile driven with savage distortion and sensational groove. Favorite track: Whistleblowers.

Red Scalp - Rituals
Rituals summons a combination of heavy worth telling your friends about. Red Scalp rock hard, there is not much more to say than that. Great accessible vocals, gargantuan riffs with beefy hooks and doomy atmosphere keep you intrigued throughout each of its lengthy songs. Well done guys, well fucking done!!

Rituals is a healthy dose of Native American desert rock straight outa Poland! The vocals cry with dreamy reverb as the colossal riffs concoct a spiritual groove. The doom length songs are weighted with sludgy girth but balanced with a stamina fit for a heavy stoner rock connoisseur.

Red Sun Cult – Red Sun Cult
Red Sun Cult stole the show one day while venturing into the stoner/psych/blues territory of camp. This one definitely has more of a jammy psych factor to it tripping out with extended instrumental intros before absolutely exploding with searing vocals rasping like a punk rocker lost in the desert.

“The guitar solos glow like a starlit sky on acid, the fuzzy riffs warm like a garage lined with shag, and the latent punk energy lingers effortlessly taking on the form of the heavy blues dressed in tie-dye. The riffs are endless and the psych factor is immense.”

Don’t pass this one up; join the cult, the Red Sun Cult.

 -The Huntsman

Friday, April 29, 2016

Holy Grove - S/T

I’ve become aware of a trend towards sabbathy, melodic, heavy stoner-doom bands with female singers lately.  Had the stoner-doom scene not always been so utterly male-dominated, I might not have noticed… but, you know, it was. 

As such, it’s impossible not to take note of the recent emergence of bands like Windhand, Ruby the Hatchet, and Holy Grove, all of whom are female-fronted, and all of whom fucking slay.

Holy Grove brings something interesting to the table, in that the tones are thick and sludgy, while the riffs shift back and forth from contemporary doominess to almost classic rock-esque at times. 

Recorded by Billy Anderson, this actually doesn’t feel like a Billy Anderson record – and by that I mean he didn’t do that thing that wrings a Melvin-esque sound out of every band he works with.  Maybe it’s been a while since I listened to Billy’s work, or maybe he took a gentler approach with someone who clearly has their own vibe and didn’t necessarily need that Anderson crunch to sound thick and heavy on tape. 

The vocal question, to me, has the potential to be pretty polarizing:  would this record and band sound as good with a male vocalist?  In other words, should it be worth mentioning the vocals for their female distinctiveness? 

I guess it depends where you stand on the whole political correctness issue.  I mean, we agree that we have a black president, right?  We don’t have to tiptoe around that?  So then, we can agree to discuss the merits of the vocals in gender-free terms while acknowledging that it’s indeed a woman belting them out.  Agreed?

I like what she’s doing.  It’s not the elastic operatic thing that some female metal singers do, nor is it the breathy, Mazzy Star-possessed by demons thing.  She’s just letting it rip, God of Rock style.  Or, Goddess of Rock, I mean.  Whatever.  It works.  It rocks.

If you like your Windhand a little less graveyardy, your Ruby the Hatchet a bit more seismic, and your stoner rock a few ounces less testosterone-fueled… or you just want to hear a quality fucking stoner-doom record, then check out Holy Grove’s debut full-length.  Available now here.

— MeteorJadd

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Blackwitch Pudding – Betty Kougar/Herman The Worm Man

Blackwitch Pudding are back with this new 7” release, and they've brought along a special guest, Soul Wizard, to belt out some vocals. I don't want to give away too much, but if you're a fan of Witch Mountain, especially the last few albums, I think you'll recognize Soul Wizard pretty easily. This is definitely a collaboration made in heaven. Or hell, depending on your perspective.

There are just two songs on offer here, but man are they good ones. Both songs are about pretty despicable characters. Herman the Worm Man, especially, will make your skin crawl. If you know this band from previous releases, you know that they blend some very tasty heavy music with some tongue in cheek, often very funny lyrics. These tracks are no different. You can look at the titles and figure out what the songs are about, but you will still get a kick out of the lyrics, and fortunately they are sung very clearly and distinctly so you get full value.

Don't mistake this for some kind of joke or parody release, though. There is some serious heaviness going on in the music. These guys get lumped into doom or stoner rock a lot, but they seem to me to be a good, solid, heavy rock band. Just because the subject matter is a little over the top doesn't mean there is some Weird Al stuff going on here. If you enjoy heavy music then you will dig this little taste of the Pudding.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Drawers - S/T LP


Customer Reviews

Wonderful!  A history buffs dream come true!

False advertising!

I've always wondered what kind of drawers Napoleon used to store his belongings.  Now I know!

Underwhelmed by Charles de Gaulle's use of faux-wood paneling.  I expected a more distinguished material.

The brochure promised I could see Marie Antoinette's drawers.  I did not expect them to be wooden boxes with metal handles.  Highly dissatisfied!

Totally titillating!

I am shocked Notre-Dame would allow such a treasure out of their sight!

Total ripoff!

It's amazing that any drawers were left unscathed by the Nazi occupation but some managed to survive.  Thank goodness!  I would have liked a few more examples from the Maginot Line but I guess beggars can't be choosers.

Thank you!  With your help I managed to pull off the best practical joke I've attempted in years!

Greetings waveriders.  I have a confession to make.  I've been listening to the self-titled album from the French band Drawers off and on for a couple of years at this point.  Based off that information anyone with half a brain would inevitably reach the conclusion that I like this music.  Since that is clearly the case you might ask why I have not yet written about this album?  Well, I don't really have a good answer so I am going to rectify my lapse in coverage right now.

Drawers is one heck of an album!  When I'm in the mood for some sludge metal with a more melodic slant to it then I know exactly where I can get my fix.  The eight songs that make up this album's thirty minute run time waste no time delivering their sonic payload.  If you require your metal to foreshadow future headbanging with mood setting introductory passages look elsewhere.  The listener hits play and the audio explosions begin.  It's as simple as that. 

What makes Drawers stand out to my ears over other bands in the sludge metal genre?  One aspect that immediately grabbed my attention was Niko Bastide's vocals.  Yes they're almost entirely screamed/growled, but there is such a wide-ranging tonality to the screaming/growling that his voice is better able to match what the rest of the band is creating.  Speaking of what the rest of the band is doing there is an altogether elevated sense of melody to their music in general.  The riffs, while entirely massive and royally distorted, make me happier while I listen to them.  Can you say that about many sludge metal acts you've come across?  I know I can't.

While I enjoy all eight songs I understand that all of you reading this may not have thirty minutes to listen to the full album.  That being the case I'd like to highlight two of my favorite songs off of Drawers.  The first is called "It's All About Love" and the second is entitled "Shadow Dancers".  Conveniently there is an official music video for the latter.  Listen to these two killer tracks and you'll hear exactly why I continue to be so enthused over this band's work.

Head to Kaotoxin Records Bandcamp page to get your digital copy of Drawers or track down a hard copy from either Kaotoxin's online shop or your favorite music outlet.  However you obtain these tunes, your mission once you have them is straightforward.  Crank the volume and rock out!


Tuesday, April 26, 2016

DESERTFEST LONDON: stage times are up, weekend tickets almost sold out!

- DESERTFEST LONDON 2016 - 5th Anniversary -
April 29th to May 1st in Camden, London
3-day pass (ALMOST SOLD OUT!): £100
Friday only: £40 // Saturday only: £40
 Sunday only: £45 (Electric Ballroom only: £25)
Running order will be available on the Desertfest website soon. For the first time, the festival will release a mobile app with stage times and useful infos to use during the weekend.  
The festival has also teamed up with Camden Lock Hotel to offer attractive accomodation + ticket packages to the festival-goers. Details and prices are available at this location

Get more infos on the Desertfest website 
Follow the festival on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

MIRRORS FOR PSYCHIC WARFARE Featuring Neurosis' Scott Kelly And Buried At Sea's Sanford Parker Unveils First Single From Self-Titled Debut; Street Date + Preorders Posted

[Photo by John Sturdy]
"It's a simple path that leads to a complicated vision; always in flux and never yielding to the destroyers." - Scott Kelly on "Oracles Hex"
Scott Kelly (Neurosis) and producer/engineer/sonic warlord Sanford Parker (Buried At Sea) are restless. This inquietude has culminated in another collaboration. The two work together in Corrections House, a project that also features the talents of Mike IX Williams of Eyehategod, and Bruce Lamont of Yakuza. While Corrections House seem hell-bent on impersonal bludgeon and unfettered terror, the pair's latest project - MIRRORS FOR PSYCHIC WARFARE - is far more restrained.
The band's haunting self-titled debut is the sonic manifestation of insomnia, complete with the tossing, the turning, and the perennial dread that comes with facing another shabby daylight. The five songs lurch and pulsate across a desolate landscape with an almost curious obsessiveness. While Mirrors For Psychic Warfare may remind some of the best work on the classic Cold Meat Industry label, there is enough familiar Kelly/Parker-isms scattered throughout to keep the album stimulating. It is a work with more in common with a fever or a fitful wraith than a record.
As a precursor to its release, set for April 22nd via Neurot Recordings, today Decibel Magazine delivers the unsettling sounds of opening hymn, "Oracles Hex" for communal ingestion issuing of the track, "Ambient(-esque?), but tense and brooding, 'Oracles Hex' sits heavy, so fans of both associated artists will find plenty to enjoy here."
Hear "Oracles Hex" at THIS LOCATION.
Mirrors For Psychic Warfare was realized and recorded by both Kelly and Parker at Actual 13 Studio and Hypercube respectively over the course of 2015. The record was mixed and mastered by Parker and will come available in CD and vinyl form. For preorders point your browser to THIS LOCATION

Monday, April 25, 2016

The Great Electric Quest

I’ll start off by saying I’ve been meaning to get this review out for over a month now and I’ve been slacking big time. Not just reviewing this record, but finding the time to dedicate to any writing about music lately. Frankly it’s not because I don’t want to rave on about albums; more so, it’s about me just wanting to keep listening to more and more music every day. It’s an epidemic and a first world problem that we are fortunate to be living with these days. Anyhow, not to ramble on when I’m supposed to be promoting the upcoming debut album by San Diego’s own, The Great Electric Quest, otherwise known as the Oceanside, CA boys TGEQ, Buddy Donner (Guitar), Tsweat Dingvell (Vocals), Adam “The Mayor” West (Drums) and Caleb Quam (Bass). The band made their name a couple years ago with their self-titled demo album released back in 2013. We all took a liking to the high energy rock outfit then and we all adore the fact that they are about to debut their full length album soon on a heavy slab of wax of epic proportions.

‘Ogrelude’ opens the voyage with a purring rhythm before quickly thrashing into furious metallic fuzz shredding like Slayer versus the Scorpion King duking it out in the southwestern desert over a plume of reefer residue. Not unlike …And Justice For All era Metallica where the song intros trampled mammoth riffs for minutes on end before the vocals even begin, Ogrelude attacks its introduction with just over 5 minutes of instrumental prowess greasing the ears just enough to overcome the wax build-up. It shows elements of thrash metal, shades of doom, and an overall riff expression of stoner rock. Not a bad combination and leads into song 2.

‘1901’ hole shots out of the gate fuming with a Deep Purple meets Motorhead matchup with riffs and vocals throttling across the southwestern deserts like Kyuss on octane boosters. The molten chords are galvanized by the melodic vocal hammering of Tsweat Dingvall. Serrated riffs jab upon shields of doom, shattering into bits of bluesy proto-metal. Flammable echoes of Viking Metal ignite into stonerized solos of fury.

Madam Elbib’ showcases a classic doom approach with a deep, heavy riff fronted by sinister vocal moans and a profoundly creepy tone, while ‘Damn You’ erupts with an oozing space rock swagger ringing with euphoric melody morphed with demented cries of the Buddy Donner battle axe! Think Mothership meets Nugent officiated by Mustaine. Tripped out stoner metal of the highest order.

‘Cry of the Wolf’ starts off highlighting the somber yet muscular vocals slowly churning into a heavy blues harmony loaded with occult jammage. Featured as a bonus track on the digital release, Cry of the Wolf also featured early on this year as a single

As the album plays on the progression from the previous EP is obvious as the Southern California clan prove their agility in straddling a heavy bluesy groove with power metal riffs. The Great Electric Quest impressed the hell out of me standing alone in a scene saturated with either uber droney doom or trendy desert stoner rawk. They don't quite fit in with any cliché sounds and there's no gimmick, just straight up rock n roll full of energy and brimming with meaty grooves. Get in early on the pre-order Greens package on sale which includes the sick looking splatter wax, and one random chance at containing a Green ticket which wins you the chance to bring the band to your home town to play a private show at the location of your choosing.

-The Huntsman

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Damned - Don't You Wish That We Were Dead coming to home video on May 20th via MVD Entertainment Group

After packing cinemas and collecting rave reviews around the world, THE DAMNED: Don't You Wish That We Were Dead is coming to home video on May 20th.

Hailed as "excellent" by Uncut, "fascinating" by The Arts Desk,and "funny, fast-moving and gloriously chaotic" by The Hollywood Reporter, the film was directed/produced by Wes Orshoski, and is the first fully authorized documentary on punk pioneers The Damned.

Ireland's Hot Press raves: "Orshoski came onto our radar with the acclaimed Lemmy documentary in 2011 [which he co-directed/produced] and has once again created a tour de force, presenting an entertaining and searingly honest depiction of the grievously overlooked punk legends."

Filmed around the globe over three years, and world-premiered at SXSW 2015, THE DAMNED: Don't You Wish That We Were Dead tells the story of the third prong in the holy trinity of U.K. punk. In advance of both the Sex Pistols and the Clash, The Damned was the first U.K. punk band to release a single (1976's immortal "New Rose"), the first to release an album ('77's frenetic Damned Damned Damned), and the first to tour America (planting their flag at CBGB in April 1977). Now in their 39th year, The Damned are the only band from London's 1976 Punk Rock Big Bang still touring the world today.

In addition to Damned founders Captain Sensible, Dave Vanian, Rat Scabies and Brian James, the film includes appearances by such one-time bandmates as The Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde, Mick Jones (The Clash) and Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead, as well as such rock and/or punk luminaries as Nick Mason (Pink Floyd), Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols), Steve Diggle (Buzzcocks), JJ Burnel (The Stranglers), Dave Gahan (Depeche Mode), Billy Idol, Ian MacKaye (Minor Threat/Fugazi), Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys), Keith Morris (Black Flag/Circle Jerks/OFF!), Dexter Holland (The Offspring), Jack Grisham (T.S.O.L.), and more.

Taking its name from the title-track of the Damned's 1979 album, Machine Gun Etiquette, the film charts the band's unique history, bitter infighting and legendary bad behavior (drummer Scabies is blamed for creating punk's "gobbing," or spitting, phenomenon); it takes viewers into the toilets once scrubbed by Captain Sensible and viewers follow the Damned on their world-wide 35th anniversary tour in 2011 -- with estranged band founders Scabies and James seen on screen answering that trek with a snarling celebration of their own. In a bizarre twist of fate, other former members find themselves being treated for the same form of cancer by the same doctor in the same Welsh cancer ward; elsewhere, the band's founding members are seen grappling with their legacy, and the fallout from missed and/or bungled business decisions that have kept them painfully working class for most of the past four decades.

The Arts Desk: "Where many music documentaries have a similar dynamic arc-rise, fall, rise again-Don't You Wish That We Were Dead is a fascinating, rambling saga that emanates a rich, sometimes morose, sense of what it's really like to have a whole life defined by the oh-so-brief explosion that was punk rock."

In the bonus features, Captain Sensible takes viewers on a tour of Croydon, the south London town that gave rise to the Damned, and he busks on the streets of Hollywood with actor/musician/comedian Fred Armisen, a huge Damned fan. Elsewhere, the full story of the band's involvement and eventual ousting from the Sex Pistols' fabled Anarchy in the U.K. tour of 1976 is told in detail for the first time. 

In the film, The Damned is credited with helping to ignite the punk scene in America. In 1977, the Damned were the first of the U.K. punks to play in both New York (at CBGB) and Los Angeles (at the Starwood).

In 2010, The Huffington Post's Binky Phillips recalled the band's U.S. debut at CBGB in early April 1977: "I was down at CBGB with a chip on my shoulder. My town was Punk Ground Zero.... I was, in fact, without a struggle, reduced to fan boy within 30 seconds. It was as if the entire evening proceeding them had been in black and white and suddenly we were thrust into Technicolor Oz."

The Damned kick off a West Coast tour in April, which includes two appearances at Coachella (April 16 & 23), as well as stops in San Francisco (April 14, Great American Music Hall); Solana Beach, CA (April 19, Belly Up); Pomona, CA (April 20, The Glass House); and Los Angeles (April 21, The Roxy).

The band officially kicks off its 40th anniversary tour on May 20 with a sold-out gig at The Royal Albert Hall in London.

Follow news about the film at:
   TWITTER: @damnedmovie
   Instagram: DAMNEDDOC

Pre-order at the MVD SHOP 


EYEHATEGOD Confirms Spring Live Takeovers; Upcoming Dates Include A Trek With Discharge

Following a short Winter slumber, the New Orleans ear bleeders in EYEHATEGOD are back to flatten stages this Spring with two separate roadside takeovers. The first round will commence with a headlining tour set to kick off April 13th and run through May 3rd. The near-three week march features support from Fight Amp on select dates as well as special shows with Antiseen (April 15th) and Corrosion Of Conformity (April 16th). The band will take a short pause before heading back to the streets from May 29th through June 6th with hard punk icons Discharge with additional support provided by Toxic Holocaust. See all confirmed dates below.
4/24/2016 St. Vitus - Brooklyn, NY [Tickets] *
4/26/2016 Altar Bar - Pittsburgh, PA [Tickets] *
4/27/2016 Now That's Class - Cleveland, OH [Tickets] *
4/28/2016 Louie's - Kalamazoo, MI [Tickets]
4/29/2016 5th Quarter - Indianapolis, IN [Tickets]
4/30/2016 Big Shots - Valparaiso, IN [Tickets]
5/01/2016 Trixies - Louisville, KY [Tickets]
5/02/2016 JJ's Bohemia - Chattanooga, TN [Tickets]
5/03/2016 Saturn - Birmingham, AL [Tickets]
* w/ Fight Amp
w/ Discharge, Toxic Holocaust:
5/29/2016 Brighton Music Hall - Boston, MA [Tickets]
5/30/2016 Webster Hall/Marlin Room - New York, NY w/ Ringworm [Tickets]
5/31/2016 Reggies - Chicago, IL w/ Ringworm [Tickets]
6/01/2016 Rickshaw Theater - Vancouver, BC [Tickets]
6/02/2016 Studio Seven -  Seattle, WA [Tickets]
6/03/2016 Dante's - Portland, OR [Tickets]
6/04/2016 Slim's - San Francisco, CA [Tickets]
6/05/2016 Glass House - Pomona, CA [Tickets]
6/06/2016 The Roxy - Los Angeles, CA [Tickets]
EYEHATEGOD continues to cause mass hearing damage in support of their self-titled LP which dropped in 2014 via Housecore Records, breaking the band's decade-and-a-half gap since their prior full-length and marking the most successful release in the band's twenty-five-year lineage. Having helped define the NOLA sound with their signature down-tuned, blues-inflected guitars awash in furious distortion, underpinning the tormented screams of Mike IX Williams over a thundering rhythm section, EYEHATEGOD reemerged stronger and more determined than ever before. EyeHateGod personifies desperation and addiction in the various backwaters of forgotten America, punctuated by the "N'awlins" sound of rebellion and pollution resulting in triumph over adversity.
Orders for EyeHateGod in North America can be placed via Housecore Records HERE.
"...the record that EHG fans have been waiting for; a stomping and venomous set of eleven tracks that reignite the band's amazing propensity for down-trodden, electric blues and with their late drummer LaCaze behind the kit." - Noisey
"...the best material of their 25-year career." - Exclaim
"...their most entertaining release since 1996's Dopesick... urgent and raw, as if the band hasn't aged a day." - Consequence Of Sound
"EYEHATEGOD play to their ferociously metallic strengths while never compromising their identity as swampy sludge-rockers, and the result is an album that's equally impressive as it is brutal." - PopMatters

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Sunnata - Zorya


Right out of the gate, Zorya, by Poland’s Sunnata, spits a deadly stream of napalm into your unsuspecting ears! Such energy and power is difficult to harness with such a masters finesse. Sunnata has managed to snatch you from the comfort of your world and transport the listener into a dark and mysterious realm of aural delights.

Formed in 2008, the band paved the way from Warsaw with a trail of bones that led to some of the biggest Stoner/Doom festivals in Europe, playing with some of the biggest names in the business. 
Zorya is the follow up LP to their 2014 release “Climbing The Colossus”. Featuring 5 Epic, crushing tunes that clock in at 50 minuets! (Zorya is more of a journey than an album) Dynamic, dark, captivating and as heavy as a ton of bricks, this album is a must have for 2016! 



Friday, April 22, 2016

The Single Life - 7 Inches of Fun: featuring Disastroid and King Buffalo

Disastroid - Love is What You Bring On Home b/w Gadabout

Hard to break this one down to simple words, catchy phrases and slogans.  Disastroid just can't make it that easy.  But with two frenetic cuts of amped up, funked up, fuzzed out math punk -- or such -- Disastroid certainly do make it fun.  Both songs are bursts of frantic time changes, thumping bass, wicked riffing and just a hint of madness.  Ok, more than a hint.   Imagine the Melvins in a barfight with Primus while someone in the back is smoking weed and blasting Fu Manchu and you'll get the feeling.  Worth exploring, as is their back catalog of 3 albums.


King Buffalo - Demo Flexidisc

If you know the mind-numbing psychedelia of King Buffalo, then you know what's in store.  Amazing melodies, heavy riffs that massage the brain rather than pummel it.  Dextrous playing and above all else . . . damn good songs!  These are the first two tracks from King Buffalo's demo put on a Clear Flexi 7" Vinyl. These tracks were Remastered for vinyl and sound killer.

 For those new to Flexi, FLEXI is a phonograph record made of a thin, flexible vinyl sheet with a molded-in spiral stylus groove, and is designed to be playable on a normal phonograph turntable. Track one IN DIM LIGHT / Track two POCKET FULL OF KNIFE.

Yes, it seems strange putting your needle down onto a piece of plastic, but keep an open mind and let the music pour out.  And when you consider that this is the only way to get these cuts on vinyl it should make it all easy for you.  Perfect psychedelia, perfectly done. Shades of Dead Meadown, Pink Floyd and other goodness.  Don't let the format fool you, this is one slice of "vinyl" that's worth getting.  -- Racer

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Solinaris – Deranged

I love technical death metal, so I always get a little excited when I see a new release from that sub-genre in my inbox. The guitars all go “weedly deedly”, the bass goes “woodly doodly”, the drummers get insane, the songs bounce all over the place between tempos and time signatures. It all just makes my music nerd heart happy.

Solinaris is just such a band. They hail from La belle province of Quebec, they've been around since 2012, and “Deranged” is their first full length release. Except, these guys are not content to be just a tech death band. Spend a little time with this album and you will hear that there is not one track out of the ten on offer that stays a tech death track all the way through. In my opinion, this makes the album that much more interesting and listenable. All of these guys have chops for days on their particular instruments and it's fun to listen to.

I'm not sure if you could call this a full blown concept album, but it definitely revolves around the theme of the mind of a serial killer in his last moments of life. Has he been caught, convicted, given the death penalty, lying on a table and awaiting the lethal injection that will end his life, as he has ended the lives of others? Is he on the run, surrounded by the police, and it's just a matter of time before they take him down, because he has decided that there is no way they will take him alive? We don't really know, because the songs don't go that deeply. I can tell you this, though. If these tracks are any indication, those last few moments are very interesting.

I listen more to the music, and the moods that it evokes. From the imaginations of these talented players, the album seems to say that many things are flashing before the eyes of the killer. There are, um, deranged moments, which sound exactly like you might think of the mind of someone such as this. Interestingly, there are calm, serene moments as well, with some songs not even hinting at metal, or even heaviness, in any form. All of these songs, though, have a twist, a zig when you think it will zag, and no song can be pinned down to be exactly what you might think it is from the opening moments. This is some very creative songwriting and not just the typical pummeling you get from this type of death metal. I found it to be thoroughly enjoyable and have spent a fair amount of time listening and digging in to what these gents have to offer.

If you like to be challenged a bit with your metal, if you like music that will lead you to think and contemplate what is outside of your normal existence, you should most definitely give a listen to this new release. Even if you are sometimes put off by tech death, there is enough here to sink your teeth into that you will surprised and entertained. Odin says check this one out.


Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Zud - The Good, The Bad And The Damned


May 5, 1978 - Ladies and gentlemen.  I am writing this in the humblest fashion I can manage.  If you were alarmed by the headline understand that it is not a joke engineered to generate more readership.  In all of my years as a newspaperman I have never seen anything on par with the supernatural events that took place last night at the University of Maine in Portland.  During the course of a rock and roll concert held there I was able to observe something truly horrific.

Do you believe in Heaven and Hell?  If so do you believe demons exist?  That they walk among us and have the capability to affect people?  I can tell you that before last night I was not a true believer.  That all changed in the middle of the headliner's set.

Out of nowhere there was a flash of brilliant light and the music stopped.  When my eyes adjusted I looked at the stage and saw all four band members convulsing as if they were being electrocuted.  Their hands were extended to the sky and their faces were locked in silent screams.  Before anyone could rush to the stage and offer assistance all four musicians were released by whatever force was holding them upright and they slumped down to their knees.

A deathly silence had understandably taken hold over the audience.  I watched the lead singer nod to the other three men and approach his microphone.  "We'll be right back," he said and the band members left the stage.  When they returned they were wearing disheveled rags and their faces and upper torsos looked to be covered in bruises.  To be blunt, the four men had the appearance of reanimated corpses.

As if their appearance wasn't enough to alarm all the god-fearing audience members the sound they produced was positively ghastly!  I refuse to call it music, but this reporter can readily imagine that noise being the soundtrack to daily existence in Hell.  Only devils and devil worshippers could possibly enjoy the filth blaring out of those speaker stacks.  What made the situation even worse was the obvious glee the "musicians" exhibited during their "performance".  It was disgusting!

Blessedly after about forty minutes of sonic torture a second flash of light blinded me once more.  Blinking rapidly to clear my vision I watched as the four men on stage regained their humanity.  They all appeared confused and near panic.  It came as no surprise when they abandoned their instruments and stumbled offstage.  I was close enough to discern the drummer ask the others, "What happened?".

I'll tell you what happened folks.  I witnessed four men possessed by demons!  That is the only reasonable explanation.  Demons temporarily took control of those four men and created a living nightmare for the concertgoers in attendance.  It was a sickening, shocking, and terrifying event to witness. 

Good day waveriders!  I'd love to boast that every time I explore new music I come across a band or artist that is tremendously exciting.  Everyone reading this knows exactly the kind of experience I'm referring to, where you stop whatever it is that you're doing and stare at the speakers in shock.  Where has this music been hiding?  Why have I not heard this until now?  The truth is that these eureka moments don't occur all that often.  Therefore, when a band like Zud makes your acquaintance you thank your lucky stars and share what you've found.

Zud's album The Good, The Bad And The Damned is a forty minute long, five track odyssey that proves beyond a reasonable doubt there will always be interesting new ideas for musicians to explore.  I did not realize how ridiculously appealing a band that mixes equal parts black metal and classic rock would sound.  That is not a sonic combination that ever crossed my mind, but man oh man is the resultant music superb!  I continue to be blown away by this band every time I listen to their album.

Now I know what you're thinking.  Black metal and classic rock?  This Penfold guy is delusional!  Those two types of music can't possibly mix.  They're like salt and pepper, chocolate and peanut butter, oil and water.  Before TGTBATD I would have agreed with your assumption.  Upon hearing Zud effortlessly switch between walls of pummeling, blackened distortion and epic, clean guitar solos however I've become a true believer!  This band is amazing!  I can imagine them playing extreme metal shows as well as vintage rock festivals and feeling right at home on either bill.

The first song on the album, "Skull Shaped Bell", exemplifies why Zud is such a fine listen.  The song begins innocently with pensive guitar work and tasteful drum accents.  Forty six seconds in and the band starts cranking up the volume, guitar wailing, double bass drum enabled.  Catch your breath because Zud's full metallic fury is unleashed at the 1:30 mark.  Head banging ensues.  Five minutes later the band completely switches gears, cuts out the vicious vocals and distortion, and goes into full on jam mode.  The remainder of the nearly thirteen minute song is dedicated to a wonderful guitar solo that perfectly mirrors the gradual buildup of aggression culminating in the song's dramatic conclusion.  This track is totally righteous, utterly compelling, and perfectly lays out what the rest of the album has in store.

Waveriders this is music that you simply cannot afford to miss.  This is mind-altering stuff with no troublesome side effects!  I'm not a doctor, but I will readily write out this prescription.  Go now to Zud's bandcamp page.  Pay the $6 copay to obtain your medicine, listen, and be happy!  Simple.  Straightforward.  Effective.


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