Tuesday, October 31, 2017

New YEAR OF THE COBRA is here! And so is... Bill Ward?!?!

"It's the best stuff we've written so far," says bassist/vocalist Amy Tung of the material on Year of the Cobra's adventurous new Billy Anderson-produced EP, Burn Your Dead.

"We had just gotten back from tour and had some ideas floating around, and they all came together really quickly and easily. Magnetic Eye Records had asked us to contribute to their upcoming Pink Floyd Redux project, so we thought that since we'd be in the studio, we'd record the new songs and put them out.  With two Floyd songs and the five songs for the EP, we essentially recorded an album of work in six days, and we think it's our best stuff to date."

Hitting stores (online and regular) as of today, the new record gets the premier treatment via uber-selective heavy music outlet Noisey, who offer this assessment of Burn Your Dead:

"As it scales through guttural riffs, industrial-strength beats, and mysterious lyrics, things only gets more compelling along the way.  The band's core still lies in a hybrid of doom, desert rock, and punk, but here it steps up its game with new twists and experimentation."

Having just completed a multi-week tour to bring the new tunes to their fans, the band arrived home to learn that their Seattle EP release party gig was juxtaposed with a show featuring none other than the new band of Bill Ward.  Yeah.  That Bill Ward.

It's complicated, but the simple explanation is that Portland's Witch Mountain had agreed to play Year of the Cobra's EP release show, but then a tour between Witch Mountain and Ward's band Day of Errors came together.  Witch Mountain and Day of Errors share a booking agent, who wisely saw no need to re-route anything when Year of the Cobra's infectious, sultry power was a perfect match for both bands.

And just like that, only a couple years into a fast-accelerating career, the rising young duo from Seattle will be sharing an evening and a stage with one of metal's founding fathers.  Not a bad way to commemorate the release of your new record.

Heavy Psych Sounds Records&Booking is really proud to announce the new album from Wedge!






Following the buzz of WEDGE's debut, the group now unveils their eagerly awaited follow-up "Killing Tongue" ...and it truly kills! Although also deeply rooted in the rock'n'roll of the late 60s & early 70s, this album clearly is a strong progression from its precursor, presenting a multicolored spectrum of sounds and more diverse songwriting. Power trio-untypical arrangements and instruments like electric sitar, clavinet and harpsichord among others are accompanying especially some of the new psychedelia soaked tunes. But of course you can expect plenty of good old fuzz guitar and Hammond organ driven material as well.

Killing Tongue was recorded & mixed at LowSwing Studios in Berlin by Guy Sternberg and mastered by Brian Lucey at Magic Garden Mastering in California/USA.

For fans of: Led Zeppelin, Wolfmother, Deep Purple, The Raconteurs, Humble Pie, The Black Crowes, Black Sabbath


Since the release of their long sold out debut, WEDGE are definitely an integral part of the European Rock scene. Over a short time the group managed to establish a steadily growing fan base by playing nearly up to 200 shows since 2014 in numerous countries such as Spain, Italy, Portugal, France, Holland, Norway, Denmark, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Poland, Czech Republic, Belgium, England, Greece, Israel and of course Germany. This includes famous festivals such as Bukta Open Air, Desert Fest, Stoned from the Underground, etc., and support gigs for bands such as Fu Manchu (US), Blues Pills (SE), Orchid (US), The Flying Eyes (US), Lucifer (UK), Pontiac (US), Simo (US), to name but a few.

WEDGE was born into the spotlight in 2014. The trio was founded in Berlin by guitarist/singer Kiryk Drewinski (ex-Liquid Visions & ex-The Magnificent Brotherhood), drummer Holger “The Holg” Grosser & bassist/organist Dave Götz and named itself after the first stone tool of human history. Their sound is accordingly archaic, extremely effective, "made from solid rock" and, when used correctly, causes fire ... especially live! WEDGE blends mainly elements of classic rock, 60s garage and some Psychedelic with a proper dose of joy while playing.

Even before the band decided on a name, their first studio album was recorded (originally planned to be a demo) and released on the Italian label "Heavy Psych Sounds" in September 2014. The LP was already sold out after a short time and was very popular among the dancers, as well as the writers. Thus, the three multi-instrumentalists are frequently credited with refreshingly catchy song writing, which outshines their peers of similar genre. This also gave WEDGE some radio airplay early on. One of the group's greatest strengths, however, is experienced live.

Just recently the band recorded their new studio album "Killing Tongue".

Heavy Psych Sounds Records&Booking

Monday, October 30, 2017

AURGANIC - Distant Echoes & Close Encounters


Aurganic is an experimental electronic/alternative studio project of two long-time friends Michael Kossov and Leo Pisaq. Originally high school classmates, they were members in a number of local punk rock bands until life and distance separated them for a number of years. They reconnected musically in 2010 finding a lot of common ground. This time it was electronica, art rock and jazz that dominated the ideas. The reunited duo recorded instrumental sessions in New York and worked on their completion via internet resulting in a self-titled EP. Rooted in friendship, the project proved its longevity with four independent releases to date. Hailing from the Toronto/New York area, Aurganic’s sound revolves around experimental electronic elements blended with rock, post-rock, progressive rock and indie rock ingredients.

“Signs” has multi-layered vocal harmonies, intelligently placed electronics and some crunchy guitar drives and starts off the album on a definite high. “Empires” has a Muse feel to it, but without sounding like a copycat with the electronics and guitars creating a great mix that makes the track stand out. “Invincible (In The Shadows)” has strong harmonies and continues the high quality of the previous songs. “Levitate” is a fantastic electro-pop song and is one of the best tracks on the album filled with great tracks. “Distant Echoes” has a slow melodic vibe that gives a nice change to the album, and also has great guitar playing. “Shaman” is a ballad with vocals electronically treated, acoustic guitar and very able drumming. The closer “Close Encounters” is an all-instrumental track that shows off the progressive leanings of the band and makes for a great ending to a fun album.

With various styles and textures, this album really gives the listener something to sink their teeth into and an exciting listen that makes you want to hit the play button again. Go out and give your ears a treat and pick this one up.

-Rick Ecker

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Fistful of Questions - A Ripple Conversation With Amy Tung Barrysmith Of Year Of The Cobra

Year of the Cobra are set to release a new five song EP titled Burn Your Dead on October 27th courtesy of Magnetic Eye Records.  The Seattle duo comprised of drummer Jon Barrysmith and singer/bassist Amy Tung Barrysmith recently wrapped up a two week U.S. tour and also released a video for Burn Your Dead the title track from the EP.
Amy was kind enough to carve out some time to do a long distance Q&A via the old interweb, with yours truly, in the first of a recurring segment that I’m thinking of calling a Fistful of Questions.

What inspired the name Year of the Cobra and who thought of the name?
Finding a name is difficult.  Most of the good ones are already taken.  We had lists and lists of names that spanned many sheets of paper, but it ultimately came down to lack of time.  We had booked a show and needed to give the venue a name, so we decided Year of the Cobra was the best on the list.  Our plan was to change it after the show, but that never happened.  I wish there was a better story behind it. 

Were you in any bands prior to Year of the Cobra?
Yes.  I played in several bands prior to YOTC.  Most of them were just for fun,but the main one, HDR, was a stoner rock power trio based out of L.A..  We split up when I moved to Seattle, but still remain very close friends.

Did you and Jon start the band before or after you were married?
We started it after we were married.

How did you and Jon meet?
Jon and I met on Halloween in Los Angeles in 2007.  We were both playing a show at the King King on Hollywood Blvd and met in the parking lot.  I tried to find him again after we both had loaded in, but he was dressed up in a costume with a wig and sunglasses so I didn’t recognize him.  We didn’t really chat again until a few weeks later when we played another show together. 

Were you wearing a costume the night you and Jon first met?
The night Jon and I met I wasn’t wearing anything spectacular.  My band, at the time, would do side gigs as a jazz trio to make money (and just for fun), so we were just dressed up as “jazz” musicians.

Tell me about one of your first musical memories?
I started playing music at a really young age.  I don’t remember a time where I didn’t play music.  It’s just always been something I’ve done and something I’ve loved.  I do remember my piano competitions, though, and how nervous I would get.  There was this yearly competition I’d play in Piedmont, CA, and to this day when I drive by that exit on the freeway my hands still get a bit clammy. 

When did you first start playing bass?
I started playing bass when I was 20.  It happened only because someone needed a bass player and, on a whim, I said I’d do it.

How long have you been on the road on this latest tour?
This latest tour was a little over 2 weeks.  We essentially did a full U.S. tour, but broke it up into two legs.  This leg took us back out to Chicago where we ping ponged back and forth for a week and then headed back.  We had some long drives at the end, but all in all it was a great tour. 

Where are you at right now?
Right now.  We are just leaving Seattle for Eugene, OR.  It’s the last night of the tour which is always bitter sweet.  Part of me is so excited to be home.  The other part of me already misses being on the road.
What is your favorite thing about being on tour?
My favorite thing being on tour is hanging with Jon.  We just have so much fun together.  It’s cool that we get to experience these things together and to know that we work well together despite the exhaustion and other stresses that inevitably arise during tour is comforting.  I also love going through all of the cities, meeting people and bonding with other bands.  We have met so many great people while on the road and have made many friends that, I believe, we will have for the rest of our lives. 
What is your least favorite thing about being on tour?
My least favorite thing while being on tour is missing my kids.  That’s always the hardest, but we’re really lucky.  We have an amazing network of friends and family that help out and our kids always seem to be happy and are having fun wherever they are.

Who does the bulk of the driving on tour?
Jon and I split the driving pretty evenly.  I do most of the night drives and Jon will take on most of the early morning drives, but we generally see who needs more rest and we go from there.

Who’s most likely to get lost?
I would say I am definitely most likely to get lost.

What’s one of your favorite venues that you’ve played at?
I’m not sure if I have a favorite venue.  All of them seem to have their pros and cons.  Some that stand out the most certainly would be The Vinyl Stage at The Hard Rock for Psycho Las Vegas and playing Hell of Hammaburg in Hamburg, Germany.  I’m not sure if it’s really fair to compare those venues to any of the other ones we’ve played.  Festivals are just so exciting.  It’s impossible to not feel the electricity in the air when you’re there.  And then being on stage with all of those people in the audience singing along, or chanting (as in the case in Germany).  It’s truly an incredible feeling.

I forgot that you guys did a European tour.  How does that compare with touring the U.S.?
Europe is really good to touring bands.  Each venue always feeds you and houses you.  Two of the most important and costly things to cover when you’re on the road.  The set times are also longer, which I like.  It allows you to really take the audience for a ride.  I like coming up with a set with that in mind.  It’s fun.  In the U.S. the drives tend to be longer because things here are geographically more spaced out.  Those drives can get a bit tiring especially since it’s just the two of us driving.  Truly, though, touring is fun regardless.  It’s really great to get out and finally meet the people you’re chatting with online or get  new people into your music.

Name one of your favorite cities on tour?
Again.  I’m not sure if I can name a favorite city.  They all stand out in different ways.  Some are smaller than I expected.  Some are bigger than I expected, but you can certainly get the feeling of each city as soon as you roll in.  Some cities have such history it’s almost awe inspiring to even be in them and others feel so young and vibrant.  You really never know what you’re going to get.  On this last tour we were lucky to get, essentially, a guided tour around Salt Lake City.  I really appreciated that.  I loved hearing some of the history of the city and seeing parts of it that we probably wouldn’t have seen.  I do wish we had more time to spend looking around, though.  Too many times we roll into a city at night and right back out after the show. 

What are some of the challenges of being on the road that your average person wouldn't know about?
I think one of the challenges that an average person wouldn’t know about would be dealing with the boredom.  There is so much sitting and waiting it’s ridiculous.  From sitting in the car for seven plus hours to get to the next city to waiting to play after you arrive.  You spend so much time waiting it ends up being really exhausting, oddly.  Jon and I have a bunch of games we play together to keep us laughing which helps, but you really have to make sure you’re in the right mindset.  It takes a few days to do, but once that becomes your “norm” you just go into autopilot for the rest of the tour. 

What band that you have played with has really impressed you with their live show?
We have played with so many bands it’s difficult to narrow down.  There’s this two piece out of Bozeman, MT called As The Crow Flies that has an incredible live show.  The singer makes his own guitars and amps and he’s such a good front man.  His brother is the drummer and he’s so dynamic when he plays.  After we played with them the first time we immediately asked to play with them again the next time we drove through. 
If you could insert yourself into one band what band would it be and why?
Oh my gosh, if I could insert myself into one band…. That’s a tough question.  I don’t know.  There are SO many bands that I love and would be so excited to play with and they aren’t exactly the ones you’d expect.  When I was younger I loved The Cure (I mean.  I still do.)  I actually wrote them a letter to see if they needed a new keyboard player wanting to throw my name in the hat.  Lol.  I think.  I was 12.  It would be incredible to play with Stevie Wonder.  I think that man is a god.  Or to have played with Prince, or Black Sabbath, or Black Flag or to play classical piano with an orchestra. The list really goes on and on.  So many dreams, so little time. 

Favorite guilty pleasure?
Favorite guilty pleasure?  Sitting and watching TV.  It’s the only time I can turn my head off.  Where I don’t feel like I have to be doing something productive or creative or anything at all.  I get to just sit down and do absolutely nothing. 

The year is 1997.  Where are you at and what are you doing?
Hm.  In 1997 I was still in California and in school.  I was deep into punk rock going to shows at Gilman St..  I believe my head was shaved (except for bangs) and I hadn’t discovered any heavy music yet.  I was just engulfed with punk rock and it’s ethos.

You are originally from California, correct?
I am not actually originally from California.  I was born in Taiwan and immigrated to the U.S. when I was one.  We lived in Memphis, TN for about eight years before moving to California.  For simplicities sake, though, I usually just say I’m from Cali. 

Is the video for “Burn Your Dead” Year of the Cobra’s first video?
Burn Your Dead is actually our third video.  The first one was for the song The Siege, produced by Deviant Kind Productions and the second one was “Temple of Apollo” by Black Sate Production.  The same company that did Burn Your Dead.  We have a couple more videos in the works, so keep an eye out!!

Does making a video feel at all glamourous or is it all business?
Making a video is definitely not glamorous.  Lol.  It consists of long days, lots of waiting, and then hard work.  It’s just odd because you never know what it’s going to look like until they start sending you edits back.  Then you’re like Ohhhhh.  I get it.  It is nice to see the final results, though.  We’ve been lucky to work with really talented people. 

Describe Jon in five words or less.
Jon in five words or less would easily be, Jon is awesome.

Favorite book?
I really don’t have a favorite book. 

Favorite movie?
I really don’t have a favorite movie.  My tastes are eclectic and I find it really difficult to narrow my likes down to just one thing.

Star Wars or Star Trek?
I actually like them both.

Waffles or Pancakes?
I really dislike both and never eat them. 

This is the first interview that I have conducted and I would like to take a minute to express my deep gratitude to Amy for taking the time to answer all of my questions while she had so much else going on.  Don’t forget to pick up a copy of the new EP Burn Your Dead available via Magnetic Eye Records October 27th and be on the lookout for more videos and if the metal gods are smiling upon you perhaps you could catch Year of the Cobra live at some future date.

~El Pedo Caliente (AKA Uncle Jameson from the Fistful of DOOM show)

Saturday, October 28, 2017

BELL WITCH: Seattle Doom Metallers To Kick Off North American Tour With Primitive Man This Week; Mirror Reaper Full-Length Out Now And Streaming Via Profound Lore

"Mirror Reaper bleeds profusely with misery, crushed by its own incredible weight, and locks eyes with you... blankly staring you down as it slowly perishes from all existence." -- Invisible Oranges

Seattle doom metallers BELL WITCH will kick off a North American tour with Denver doom trio Primitive Man this week. The journey begins on October 24th in Salt Lake City, Utah and runs through November 19th in Mesa, Arizona. From there, the band will take a short break before joining French doom metalists/labelmates Monarch! for a stretch of live dates from December 1st in Vancouver, British Columbia through December 7th in Los Angeles, California with more performances to be announced in the coming days. Additionally, BELL WITCH will bring their devastating odes to the stages of Roadburn Festival 2018 in Tilburg, The Netherlands. The band will perform two sets, the first on Saturday April 21st at the 013 venue and Sunday, April 22nd at Het Patronaat recreating Mirror Reaper in its crushing entirety. See all confirmed dates below.

BELL WITCH will be touring in support of their breathtaking Mirror Reaper full-length, released last week via Profound Lore. Engineered and mixed by veteran producer Billy Anderson (Swans, Sleep, Neurosis), the duo of Dylan Desmond (bass, vocals) and Jesse Shreibman (drums, vocals, organ), Mirror Reaper delivers one continuous, eighty-three-minute piece unfolding as a single track. While retaining the immense weight of their previous releases, Mirror Reaper sees the band explore the more meditative, melancholy, and introspective aspects to their sound through the introduction of long, lonely organ passages and the return of vocalist Erik Moggridge (Aerial Ruin), offering a prominent presence.

Stream the record in full via the official Profound Lore Bandcamp page HERE.

Mirror Reaper is available on 2xCD, 2xLP, and digital formats. Order your copy today at THIS LOCATION.

BELL WITCH w/ Primitive Man: 
10/28/2017 Rock Island Brewery - Rock Island, IL
10/29/2017 The New Dodge - Hamtramck, MI
10/30/2017 Ace Of Clubs - Columbus, OH
10/31/2017 Brillobox - Pittsburgh, PA
11/01/2017 Coalition - Toronto, ON
11/02/2017 Bar Le Ritz - Montreal, QC
11/03/2017 Geno's - Portland, ME
11/04/2017 Cop Frat - Oneonta, NY
11/05/2017 ONCE - Boston, MA
11/06/2017 Saint Vitus Bar - Brooklyn, NY
11/07/2017 Kung Fu Necktie - Philadelphia, PA
11/08/2017 The Meatlocker - Montclair, NJ
11/09/2017 Sidebar - Baltimore, MD
11/10/2017 Strange Matter - Richmond, VA
11/11/2017 Drunken Unicorn - Atlanta, GA
11/12/2017 Exit/In - Nashville, TN
11/13/2017 White Water Tavern - Little Rock, AR
11/14/2017 Growlers - Memphis, TN
11/15/2015 Santos -  New Orleans, LA
11/16/2017 Lost Well - Austin, TX
11/17/2017 Ridgelea Lounge - Fort Worth, TX
11/19/2017 Club Red - Mesa, AZ w/ Thra, Ceremented * no Primitive Man
w/ Monarch!:
11/30/2017 Cobalt - Vancouver, BC * Bell Witch only
12/01/2017 Highline - Seattle, WA
12/02/2017 Tonic Lounge - Portland, OR
12/03/2017 Old Nick's - Eugene, OR
12/05/2017 Blue Lamp - Sacramento, CA
12/06/2017 Golden Bull - Oakland, CA
12/07/2017 Five Star Bar - Los Angeles, CA
End Tour
4/21/2018 013 @ Roadburn - Tilburg, NL
4/22/2018 Het Patronaat @ Roadburn - Tilburg, NL

Formed by Desmond and ex-drummer/vocalist Adrian Guerra, BELL WITCH released their first self-titled demo in 2011 and partnered with Profound Lore Records for their debut album, Longing, in 2012. The duo's second LP, 2015's acclaimed Four Phantoms was recognized as one of doom metal's triumphs of the year. The band extensively toured in North America and Europe, securing notable festival appearances including Roadburn, Basilica Soundscape, Sled Island, and Psycho California.

"The title 'Mirror Reaper' is indicative of the Hermetic axiom 'As Above, So Below,' written with two sides to form one whole," notes the band of the themes surrounding the concept and lyrics of latest offering, Mirror Reaper. "The song is both its own and its reflection, as an opposite is whole only with its contrary. Our focus as a band has always been the perception of ghosts and the implied archetype of the dichotomy of life/death therein. 'Mirror Reaper' is a continuation of that concept. During the writing process we were devastated by the loss of our dear friend and former drummer, Adrian Guerra. In love and respect to his memory, we reserved an important yet brief section in the song for him that features unused vocal tracks from our last album. This specific movement serves as a conceptual turn in the piece, or point of reflection. We believe he would be proud of it as well. 'Mirror Reaper' was the first collaborative writing project with the new lineup, and Adrian's death during it brought extra emotional weight. We sought to match the complexity and weight of these events within the composition of the piece."

"...a bottomless, candlelit mausoleum within which to lose yourself, as terrifying bellows are propelled from the depths on gusts of ire, and soothed by mellifluous paeans sung by mournful acolytes. A dismally beautiful tragedy." -- Team Rock

"The Seattle-based funeral doom duo don't so much write songs as build sonic ecosystems, interval by interval and frequency by frequency. As performers, the charge every gesture with dynamic impact, nuance, and a degree of psychic intensity rare even in metal." -- Decibel

"To listen to an album like Mirror Reaper is to surrender to it, to let it suck you in. Listening to Mirror Reaper, I'm not thinking about genres or influences or whether I like this album more than the band's last album. I'm not really thinking anything. I'm just feeling big feelings. Mirror Reaper, as a piece of music, exists somewhere in the beyond. It's a hell of a place to visit." -- Stereogum

"Knowing the backstory makes listening to Mirror Reaper even more intense, but even if you don't, it's such a powerful piece of music that you'll be able to feel that some type of major force was behind it." -- BrooklynVegan

"...one of the most breathtaking releases of the year." -- Ghost Cult

"This record goes above and beyond, transcendent and beautiful..." -- Two Guys Metal Reviews

"...an instant classic of its genre, meticulously deconstructing funeral doom's core components and reassembling them into something that pushes further than maybe any band of their kind has pushed before, and yet possessing an emotive heart and spirit so powerful and affecting that it feels the furthest thing from a clinical musical exercise and instead a stunning tribute to a fallen brother." -- Distorted Sound

Friday, October 27, 2017

Flummox - Garage Prog

Alright, Flummox from Murfreesboro, TN is a strange but wonderful band that I became acquainted with when their first full-length, 'Phlummoxygen' came out back in 2014. Their new amazing EP, 'Garage Prog' was officially released on June 24th 2017. In between, two singles and a second full-length has seen the light of day. On this new recording Flummox has grown from a trio into a quartet with new drummer Alan Pfeifer joining ranks along with second guitarist Justin Smith. But this has not altered their quirkiness whatsoever. Instead, more dimensions have been added to their one-of-a-kind sound which heightens their greatness further. As heavy and metal as they can be, Primus has seeped in to the sound way more than before and I love it. And this is guiding the band closer to creating their own music. Best of all is that Flummox doesn't give a fuck! Don't you just love that attitude? I sure do, even more so when you deal with deep-South free-thinkers with talent to match. Colours from the entire palette are used in this awe-inspiring work of art which brings Flummox to the very front of new innovators.

Full throttle from the get-go, ‘Hey!’ is a short boisterous affair that is the closest thing to a “proper” metal song on this EP. Flummox won’t let off the pedal and I love it. As you are trying to catch your breath ‘Tom Walker Blues’ explodes like a punk/hardcore/Primus composition only to hit doom mode halfway through mixed with a ton of groove. Confusing? Not in the slightest, if you ask me. Because Flummox know how to tie a million pieces together and create complete order within the most chaotic atmosphere. ‘A Bundle Of Styx’ is the song that defines the band best. It starts off as a slow-ish blues rocker only to morph into a Primus-esque headfucker. Odd time signatures walk hand in hand with trippy, heavy rock elements and insanity. No holds barred they throw caution to the wind and the end result is fucking fabulous. Hmmm….is closer ‘Black Philip’ based on The Sweet’s ‘Ballroom Blitz’? The punkish intro sure reminds me of it before switching to neck breaking mode to finally settle for a Kinghorse sound. All this happens within the first 90 seconds and I’m blown away. A melting pot indeed, but again Flummox are the new masters at blending styles and ideas, like it’s nobody’s business. After a mellow trippy middle part, they open the gates to the maelstrom again and I am sucked in and mangled and beaten to a bloody pulp. And I love it! Did I say I love it? Yeah, I did.

If the powers that be within music actually focused on real bands, creating real music, Flummox would be mega stars by now. As we all know though, those powers that be only go for the quick dollars and peoples blatant laziness, so the real bands out there rarely – if ever – get the attention they deserve. Flummox is a truly amazing band who deserves world recognition and ‘Garage Prog’ show how they go from strength to strength with each release they put out. Thank you for introducing me to the world of Flummox, guys!


Band Photo Credit: Personal Bliss Photography

Thursday, October 26, 2017

FREEDOM HAWK: Ripple Music to release self-titled album from vintage rock pioneers | Stream and share it in full now!

Freedom Hawk on Web | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Bandcamp | YouTube

Ripple Music is thrilled to announce the upcoming rerelease Freedom Hawk; the self-titled 2009 album from vintage rock pioneers Freedom Hawk.

Hailing from the barrier dunes of Virginia, the quartet blend heavy riffs into rolling grooves and soulful guitar melodies to showcase their sound. Widely recognized as one of the leading forces in the retro-rock movement, their exceptional brand of heavy and high energy live shows leaves many questioning whether they’ve stepped through a time warp directly out of the ’70s hard rock heyday. Wrapped in core metal tones with slight psychedelic edges Freedom Hawk’s driving beat and heavy guitars offer the kind of timeless vocals that gave light to the dawn of the new and heavy revival.

Freedom Hawk by Freedom Hawk is released worldwide on 17th November 2017 on vinyl and CD. For more info visit www.ripple-music.com and stream and share the album in full here – https://freedomhawk.bandcamp.com/album/freedom-hawk
1. On The Other Side
2. Universal
3. My Road
4. Ten Years
5. Bad Man
6. Jay Walker
7. Hollow Caverns

Artist: Freedom Hawk
Album: Freedom Hawk
Label: Ripple Music
Release Date: 17/11/17
Format: CD/LP

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Xroadie Files

BongCauldron – Binge
Corky – Bass /Vocals, Biscuit – Guitar/Vocals, Jay- Drums

Devil is excellent stoner rock with lots of fuzz and distortion guitar.  Bury Your Axe In The Crania Of is slow plodding bass then the rest of the band kicks in with a very Sabbath sound.  68 is a faster speed metal style of song in the Motorhead meets Sabbath vein.  Binge is slow plodding stoner rock.  Bigfoot Reigns is a mid-tempo kicks you in the gut gets you rockin grooving song.  Hopeless is a slow Sabbath style o song with some excellent guitar work.  Toxic Boglin slow steady and deadly and vicious.  Yorkshire Born is Sabbath meets Motorhead meets Raven.

Crosss – Snakes Split EP
Snakes -  Brett Nelson, Ian Waters, Josh Galloway, Jim Roth, Steve Gere

Old Like Hell 9 minutes of melodic psychedelia.  Hypothermia Pt2 is over 15 minutes of is just strange flowing instrumental music that reminds me of Tangerine Dream.

Crosss – Andy March – Guitar/Vocal, Suzie Burke – Drums/Vocals, Michael Stein – Bass

Cold Hands reminds me of old Pink Floyd meets stoner rock slow and tripping.  The Afterlight is another stoner meet psychedelia style of music meets the Stones.  I Got Lo takes you on a trip far away into your mind has an Amboy Dukes feel to it mixed with Pink Floyd.  Descent takes you into the further reaches of your mind where you’re not sure what is real.

Castle – Welcome To The Graveyard
Mat Davis – Guitar/Vocals, Liz Blackwell – Vocals/Bass, Al Mcartney - Drums

Black Widow has a great riff that has you movin and grooving with some excellent female vocals.  Hammer and The Cross is another excellent metal song that has you playin air guitar and drums along with excellent vocals and great guitar work.  Welcome To The Grave Yard is a melodic heavy metal song with some interesting lyrics and foot tapping riffs.  Veil of Death starts of solely with some excellent guitars and vocals then shredding guitar and a fist pumping riff these people know how to rock.  Flash Of The Pentagram is straight forward Motorhead style of head banging metal.  Traitors Rune is power metal at its finest with a Dio style and feel excellent to sing along to as well.  Down in The Cauldron Bog is melodic at first with some excellent guitar that slowly builds and shred at the perfect times.  Natural Parallel is an excellent way to end this great metal album lots of riffs and feelings with great vocals.

Bell Witch – Mirror Reaper
Dylan Desmond – Bass/Vocals, Jesse Schreibman – percussion/Hammond B3/ Vocals

Mirror Reaper get ready to sit back and just enjoy a 83 minute song that starts very slowly tripping away and very slowly builds in intensity mix gothic metal and hard rock with Tangerine Dream that’s what you have here.

Exhumed – Death Revenge
Michael Bud Burke – Guitar/Vocals, Michael Hamilton – Drums, Matthew Harvey – Guitar/Vocals, Ross Sewage – Bass/Vocals

Death Revenge Overture is a very melancholic intro to Defenders Of The Grave which comes on full force in your face with vocals that seems to come from a demons mouth and hard heavy riffs with blast beats.  Lifeless is slower but just as ferocious in nature then it just kicks you in the teeth.  Dead End has more of a metal intro with some amazing riffs and drumming then it grabs you by the throat and won’t let go.  Night Work has a Slayer style with more dark vocals.  Unspeakable is punk death speed thrash metal in your face punching away.  Grave Markers of Edinburg is an orchestral instrumental then The Harrowing punches you in the throat and just annihilates you.  A Funeral Party more Slayer meets Death in your face pummeling.  The Anatomy Act Of 1832 slow piano works its way into your brain like a worm then several time changes from fast to mid to slow continue thru the song.  Incarnadined Hands reminds me of Destruction from Germany fast heavy with deep gruff vocals.  Death Revenge is more punk meets metal meets death metal ferocity.


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Introducing THE HAZYTONES: Canadian stoner rockers to officially release debut album next month on Ripple Music

The Hazytones on Web | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Founded in 2015 in Montreal, Canada by singer/guitarist Mick Martel, drummer Antoine St-Germain and bassist Frederic Couture, The Hazytones is a heavy stoner rock trio renowned for their onstage presence and musical intensity.

In September 2015, they earnestly began work on their debut album at ReelRoad studio in Rosemont – La Petite-Patrie in Montreal. An unmistakable labour of love with recording and mixing taking many months, the band released their first single and music video for ‘Living On The Edge’, at the same time ushering in an inaugural, twenty-three show tour across Canada.

Almost a year to the day after entering the studio, The Hazytones – the band’s self-titled debut album – was self-released on 22nd September at La Rockette Bar at the Pop Montreal Music Festival and widely received shortly after by stoner/psychedelic rock communities in Canada, USA and particularly Europe, where the band toured, taking in the UK, Belgium, Switzerland and France.

Returning from the tour, The Hazytones drafted in new bassist and backing vocalist Adam Gilbert in place Couture and ever since have been holed up writing new material for album number two ahead of the official release of The Hazytones on 3rd November 2017 through Ripple Music in the USA and in Europe on Oak Island Records/Kozmik Artifactz.

Stream and share the album in full here – https://thehazytones.bandcamp.com/releases

Pre-order now at www.ripple-music.com

The Hazytones:

Mick Martel – Vocals, Guitar
Adam Gilbert – Bass, Backing Vocals
Antoine St-Germain – Drums
1. Light of The Day
2. Fool's Paradise
3. Free from Your Spell
4. Marked by The Devil
5. Children of The Universe
6. Day of The Dead
7. Kill to Survive
8. Living on The Edge
9. Moonstruck

Artist: The Hazytones
Album: The Hazytones
Label: Ripple Music (US) / Kozmik Artifactz (UK & EU)
Release Date: 03/11/17
Format: CD/LP/Digital


Monday, October 23, 2017

PATRICK GRANT - A Sequence Of Waves (Twelve Stories And A Dream)

Patrick Grant is originally from Detroit, now living in New York City, he studied at the world famous Juilliard School and worked with Billy Joel and Quincy Jones on an international project for the Millennium, and in his work with Robert Fripp (King Crimson, Brian Eno, and David Bowie) & The Orchestra of Crafty Guitarists. The musicians on the album include Patrick Grant on guitar, bass, viola, piano, keyboards and percussion; John Ferrari on drums, mallet instruments and percussion; Nick Didkovsky on guitar; Dan Cooper on 7-string electric bass; Lynn Bechtold on violin; and Dan Barrett on cello.

A thirteen track, all instrumental album that has many moods and feels, like a soundtrack to an exciting movie that you want to keep listening to. With some rock, classical and progressive, you have a mixed bag with more choices than going out to a buffet. “Lucid Intervals” opens the album with strings, chimes and hand drums and sets you off on a great start. “Driving Patterns” has great electric guitar playing, piano, peppy percussion, and a fun drum beat. “Seven Years At Sea” has a field recording of echoed and looped vocals from the Hoffpauir sisters (Elita, Mary, and Ella), which was recorded in Louisiana in 1934. I have only touched on a few tracks here, but really, you can’t go wrong when you hit play, just pick a track and it will thrill you and take you away on an exciting trip.

Grab a copy and visit somewhere else, a place you may not have any idea where or when it is, but you will definitely enjoy the trip. A collection of songs that will keep you coming back for more and listen to over and over again, and keep a smile on your face at the same time.

-Rick Ecker

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Bandcamp Bonanza – Deep, Fat, And Fuzzy

Sorry for failing to avoid the fat riffs and deep grooves that have been invading my bandcamp lately. It’s become not only an ongoing problem, but a first world problem that I cannot live without. I say you cash your paycheck at paypal via bandcamp this week and sit back and let the power of the riff compel you. Holy smokes do we have a treat for you!

Ignu – Lightningflash Flintspark
The deep, slappy bass line rumbles against a proto-tinged psychedelic flair with shades of acidic 70s underground. Riffs baked with sun fried fuzz distort above the land called ‘Warsaw’ as a disturbingly pleasant groove fills the stage with a killer Polish accent. Btw, how cool of a name is Warsaw? Thanks to Jonny P. for this stunning find. Favorite track: 07 - Endless Rift.

Spacelord – Spacelord
What we have here folks is a huge slab of stoner madness. Repeat plays are mandatory and invigorating. Push play and listen to what the hard rock is cooking.
Just when you thought we couldn’t have another Sabbath inspired hard rock band come in and sweep us off our feet, Spacelord hits us with a dazzling output of warm, fuzzy hooks, piercing vocals, and heavy blues infused stoner rawk riffs. Equal amounts of Zeppelin influence to Sabbath buzz. Huge infectious groove through and through.

Gypsyland - Gypsyland
The backstory behind this album is enough to purchase without even hearing it. After listening, its clear that the music is even better than the backstory. With their 90's grunge roots rolled in their sleeves, Gypsyland pack a kick-ass progressive flair of grooving riffs ranging from arena-tinged arena anthems to deeply intricate, well written rock and roll compositions. It would be a shame for this to go unnoticed.

Angus Black – Angus Black
This one was super fun to review as by the time I was ready to contribute my turn, the fans had already started an AC/DC tribute obviously in reference to the band name. Of course we all know Angus Young and these guys sound nothing like him, other than they kick some major doom ass in a similar fashion. It’s unknown at this time if the guitarist is decked out in schoolboy attire, but regardless the riffs are trippy and groovy as shit.
FDJ and Paul Rote have some BIG BALLS making those AC/DC jokes. A TOUCH TOO MUCH if you ask me. While Pepe Roni cuts the cheese with the much more apt Uncle Acid comparison I couldn’t pass the opportunity to join in on the fun. It's gonna take a WHOLE LOTTA ROSIE to yank this fuzzed out stoner doom from my speakers. Favorite track: I'll Guide You Home.

Deep – Deepkvlt
The groove runs DEEP with soaring psychedelic grit, progressive stoner riffs and titilating fuzz. Take a look into her eyes and tell me what you see. Favorite track: Mind Control.

Deadly Vipers - Fueltronaut
Wow, not much else to say as just WOW. At this moment in time I only have one listen in and am gasping for a breath of air. I feel like I’ve been drifting
Deadly Vipers strike with a venomous attack of space-age desert rock preaching the gospel of Kyuss at the altar of Truckfighters. The lethal vocal chops gnaw away with relentless hooks, low end rhythm and addictive solos.

Gods & Punks – Into the Dunes of Doom
The Brazilian doomers are back at it with an enhanced output of grandious fuzz. The journey takes us into the Dunes of Doom by way tranquilizing blues buried in psychedelic doom.

The Age of Truth – Threshold
Since we’re talking the truth I’ll be honest, Ripple Music would have signed these guys had we been in tune earlier on in the game and with adequate time to prepare for a proper release on the roster, which is packed in case you haven’t been paying attention. Have no fears though cause the Ripple equivalent across the pond, Kozmik Artifactz signed a deal to release on their killer tribe of bands. This is an absolute beast of a hard rock album and down to earth guys to boot. Prepare to be riffed to pieces by the debut into the heavy underground family via Threshold.
Truth be told, Threshold slams groovy riffs down harder than a lie detector test on on the mainstream media. The vocals ooze with masculinity as the guitar strokes us with breakneck precision guided by tight brooding rhythm. Stadium rock for the underground masses! Ripple Music approved, Kozmik Artifactz tested, pick this up today and save the lies for tomorrow.

-The Huntsman
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