Sunday, March 31, 2019

A Ripple Conversation With Ancient Altar

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?

The first time I heard Purple Haze it completely blew my mind. I think I was in 4th or 5th grade at the time, and it really set me down the path I ended up on. I even got a Jimi Hendrix tattoo when I turned 18.

The summer after High School, a friend and I went down to San Diego for the weekend to hang out with his cousin. He was heavily involved in the music scene down there at the time, and turned us on to so many bands that I almost couldn’t keep up. He took us to shows, introduced us to the bands, and even gave us records to take home. That’s when I heard Drive Like Jehu for the first time, and they have stayed one of my favorite, and most influential bands to this day.

The album that made me want to play doom though, was Samothrace’s demo. I was playing in a desert rock band at the time and the dudes I was playing with were really trying to push the band in a Queens of the Stone Age direction. It wasn’t horrible, it just wasn’t what I wanted to do. As soon as I heard that demo for the first time, I realized what I was meant to play, and quit that band soon after.

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?

It’s always about the riff to me.

Coming up with riffs on my own is one of my favorite things to do. I’ll usually sit down for a couple hours, write, and then record everything I come up with. Some stuff sticks, and some stuff doesn’t, but usually we can find a few gems in there.

From there, either Scott or I will bring some loosely structured songs to practice, and we start pounding it out from there. Our drummer Geoff has really been instrumental in adding to our new material as well, and it’s become a really seamless process for us.

Lyrics/vocals on the other hand come a little harder for us, but tend to work themselves out organically. It usually starts out with a bunch of random words as we get the vocal patterns down, and then the lyrical content comes from there. Most of the time, it’s based on something that has influenced or affected us at that time.

Who has influenced you the most?

Hands down, John Reis. For those who don’t know, John is/was in Drive Like Jehu, Rocket From The Crypt, The Sultans, Back Off Cupids, and bunch of other amazing bands. His catalog is not only lengthy, but prolific, and he’s never let up. His guitar style, which I found out later in life, was influenced by Greg Sage of the legendary band Wipers out of Portland. There’s something unique and different about their guitar playing, and I found that adapting that to fit a heavier, doomier sound, made for something different on my end. Between his playing and his work ethic, John continues to influence me to this day.

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

Anywhere I can get it. I love listening to stuff that has nothing in common with doom, and then seeing how that can be adapted to fit what we’re trying to do. We never want to box ourselves in, so we’ll open ourselves up to anything, and sometime that’s the catalyst for writing a new song.

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

All three of us are overtly aware of the inequality both financially and racially in LA, and the pain and despair you see in that on a daily basis drives our musical output. It’s hard not to, when you go to a show, and you have to step over sleeping people on the sidewalk. It’s hard not to feel anger when your fellow human beings are treated as if they’re garbage, all while they’re tearing down neighborhoods and rebuilding so that only those with money can live there. I know it’s happening all over the country right now, but this is something that we experience on a regular basis.

Where'd the band name come from?

Ancient Altar was born out of the instrumental band Iron Mtn. We had gotten to a point where we wanted to switch directions, and we felt starting a new band, instead of carrying on with the old one, was the best course of action.

We decided that we wanted a name that had something to do with our old band, so we chose a song title from one of our unreleased songs.

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

To me, 2001: A Space Odyssey has always been a film in which the music was just as important as the film itself, and I’d love to be a part of something like that. To try to pin down one specific movie is close to impossible for me, but to be able to create something the way like guys like Nick Cave and Warren Ellis do nowadays, would be a dream come true.

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?

Do I get paid for this one? I’d go with Foie Gras. The content is really thought provoking in that it brings to question what we as a society create, our responsibility in that, and the consequences when it goes too far.

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

We’ve never really experienced anything that big, but we’ve had a few malfunctions that screwed up a song or two. One that does come to mind though, is last year we were opening for Ufomammut, and my strap lock popped out of my guitar right at the beginning of the song. I think it was about 3 minutes in until I was able to fix it. Not a huge deal in retrospect, but up on that stage, it felt like the end of the world. Haha.

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

I absolutely love playing live. It’s an experience that really can’t be topped by anything else. When I get up there, I forget about all this shit I’m dealing with, and focus on the emotion of what we’re playing. I try to relay those emotions onto those in the crowd so that they too can experience a little bit of forgetting about life’s bullshit.

What makes a great song?

There is no right answer to this, but I believe it’s emotion. You could say a good melody, a good verse/chorus combo, or anything else like that, but I feel that would be wrong. I’ve heard complex pieces that were absolutely unbelievable, and I’ve heard songs with one riff repeated over and over for 10 minutes that were amazing. If it hits me in emotional way, it’s a good song.

Tell us about the first song you ever wrote?

I had a band with a couple friends right out of high school, and we would to try to write stuff like the punk bands in San Diego were doing at the time. We weren’t very good at all, but there were a few bits and pieces that were actually decent. Anyway, the first complete song turned out to be good enough to the point that I ended up using the intro riff on an Ancient Altar song 20 something years later.

What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

The song I just mentioned. I had that riff in my head all that time, and was determined to use it one day. We ended up writing a fairly complex piece based of that riff, and it’s become one that we’re really proud of. We’ve actually already recorded it, and will be putting it out later this year.

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

For my money, it has to be Yob and Bell Witch. Those two bands are writing music that’s true to who they are, and they’re reaching people who would never listen to a metal album. Their music is beautiful, brutal, emotional, and it feels fresh even in this day of over saturation in the doom scene.

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

I personally love digital. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing like holding an album cover in your hands while you’re listening to a record, but I’d never be able to afford to listen to half the bands I do if I only bought vinyl. Digital doesn’t come close to the sound quality of vinyl, so I definitely pick up what I can when I can.

Whiskey or beer?  And defend your choice

Beer for sure. None of us are big drinkers, so when we do, it’s usually beer.

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?

Scott is actually the metal buyer for Amoeba Records in Hollywood, so if you’re in town, spin by and have him turn you on to some new music.

What's next for the band?

We’re in the process of working on a split 12” with the band Cosmic Reef Temple out of Santa Cruz, CA, and we’re writing new material for our next full length that we hope will be out by next summer. We’re also working on some local shows with a possible west coast tour in the late summer.

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

Thanks for checking out the record. It’s really been a labor of love for us, from writing, to recording, to the artwork, to the creation of the final package, and we’re really excited to finally share this with people. Keep your eyes peeled for more from us in the coming months and years!

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Begin the Begin: R.E.M.'s Early Years Coming via Verse Chorus Press on May 14

Excerpt HERE courtesy of Dangerous Minds

Begin the Begin is the first biography of R.E.M. wholly researched and written since they disbanded in 2011. It offers by far the most detailed account of the group's formative years--their early lives, their first encounters with one another, their legendary debut show, early tours in the back of a van, initial recordings, their shrewdly paced rise to fame.

The people and places of the American South are crucial to the R.E.M. story in ways much more complex and interesting than have previously been presented, claims Robert Dean Lurie; he explores the myriad ways in which the band's adopted hometown of Athens, Georgia--and the South in general--shaped its members and the character of their art. The South is much more than the background here; it plays a major role: the creative ferment that erupted in Athens and gripped many of its young inhabitants in the late 1970s and early '80s drew on regional traditions of outsider art and general cultural out-thereness, and gave rise to a free-spirited music scene that produced the B-52's and Pylon, as well as laying the ground for R.E.M.'s subsequent breakout success.

Lurie has tracked down and interviewed numerous figures in the band's history who were underrepresented in, or absent from, earlier biographies--they contribute previously undocumented stories and cast a fresh light on the familiar narrative.

Advance Praise for Begin the Begin:

"Meticulously researched and always elegantly written, Begin the Begin is a critical but glorious tribute to its subject."
--Christopher Sandford, author of Bowie: Loving the Alien

"Hope, yearning, and fear are visceral here, and the portrait painted is of something joyous, mad, and brilliant all at once."
--David Guterson, author of Snow Falling on Cedars

"This beautiful, joyful book is more than a biography--it's a deep exploration of art and its bloody relationship with business, a meditation on the South, on youth and love, on family and fame, and an intelligent return to the soundtrack of the 1980s."
--Rebecca Lee, author of Bobcat and Other Stories  

Pre-order the book HERE

Friday, March 29, 2019

Ripple Music Announces Rogue Wave Records: The New Ripple Imprint For Psychedelic Garage Rock

Ripple is thrilled to officially announce the new imprint, Rogue Wave Records, your newest label destination for music of a more psychedelic/garage/dream pop vein.   First up on your tour of Rogue Wave are two stunning releases (done in conjunction with Ripple) by Cyprus Psych merchants, Arcadian Child.   Afterglow and Superfonica both transcend the paths of stoner groove, psychedelic altered states and ear-catching melodies.  As More Fuzz says, "You like psych? stoner? indie rock? No need to chose, you got all this!  It gets better with every listening, and you’ll find yourself singing along quite quickly"  The heavy groove deep in their psych even got them named as one oft the top albums on the November and December Doom Charts.   Check it out yourself at where you can pick up the digital, cd or vinyl if you like, and of course all Rogue Wave releases can be found at
The Sacred Shrines evolved from Australian retro-psych rockers, Grand Atlantic who hold the distinction of being one of Ripple's first ever releases (split 7" with Sky Parade . . .way back when).  Now they explore their own world of psych-infused, retro-60's garage rock, with earworm songwriting and a dark underbelly.  Instantly catchy, New Noise Magazine raves, "Come Down From The Mountain is built on nostalgia, celebrations of excess and psych-rock guitar signatures that feel like a call back to a bygone era.The band comes off a little grimier than their obvious influences, making for a pretty cool record for anyone who felt like rock got lost, or perhaps just got lost along the way."  You can listen or pick it up at
We can't even begin to tell you how excited we are about Las Robertas signing to Rogue Wave.  After being featured by Bandcamp as one of the new, hot emerging bands on the International Psychedelic Rock Scene, we promptly contacted them and put into motion a North American reissue of their classic last album, "Waves of the New" cut at 45 RPM for the best listening experience.  But there's more!  Pegged to appear on both weekends of this year's upcoming Coachella festival, Rogue Wave is thrilled to release the new 7" 3-song "Coachella" EP, Together Outrageously.  NPR Music Website raves about them, and you will too.  "Las Robertas' trippy noise-pop garage-rock took the international music scene by storm in 2010, Now back with a third full-length album, Waves of The New, Las Robertas serves up a sunny set of tunes tinged with surf-rock and psychedelia and surrounded by its hallmark sylphic vocals...vintage garage sound, elegant shoegaze guitar chords, all grounded and propelled by the krautrocky beats."

Check out the album reissue and the new 7" (on pre-order) at  and
Screamfeeder are legendary in their native Australia, with entire concerts devoted to reinterpretations of main songwriter Tim Steward's music.  Screamfeeder brandish a fierce blend of guitar noise pop a la The Pixies or Dinosaur Jr, with a garage sensibility, a punk rock intensity, and alt rock hooks and melodies.  "Pop Guilt" charted in Australia and is set to open the ears of North American audiences.  Get a flavor of their vibe by checking out the single "Shelter" and dig the whole album of sunday am bliss rock at

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Joe D. Carpenter - A Sharer In Demons

Staying true to his successful formula, Joe is going down a new path again with opus #3 in his EP-series, and he does it so well. The difference between each release is not enormous but still distinct and with ‘A Sharer In Demons’, he has moved forward once again. The six new songs move deftly between different emotions and tempos with a huge nod to none other than Killing Joke.

Instrumental ‘Portal’ is the perfect opener with its fantastic horror-inducing feeling and touch. Brief but very effective. It leads into the title track, ‘A Sharer In Demons’ which is slow, lurking and severely punishing. Tribal drumming leads the way as Joe purges his fury. ‘Diatribe’ brings the first homage to the mighty Killing Joke, especially in the riffing and the vocal approach. Lovely indeed and that guitar performance, man! And halfway through a wonderful acoustic part appears that leans heavily towards Depeche Mode. Odd combination perhaps, but it’s a great song, one of my favourites on this EP.

‘No Revelation’ continues where ‘Diatribe’ left off, albeit slower and more atmospheric. And the presence of Jaz Coleman is still there. Very sinister, doomsday-sounding and purging. Joe is onto something on ‘Opiate Fiend’. He has written songs like this before which are full of Southern Darkness, angst and dejection. All while being acoustic and bluesy. These compositions are getting better and better, just listen to this one. Starts off with a blistering guitar solo before he unleashes the demons. Very dark and morose, yet absolutely wonderful. ‘I Destroy Angels’ is the perfect ending to this great recording. The song continues down the Southern Darkness path at first while moving at a snail’s pace. The pace continues while an evil apocalyptic sense takes over.

At first, Joe was going to do a three part EP-series but two more have already been released – yeah I’m a slow-poke sometimes. And as great as this release, and the previous two are, I can’t blame him for recording and releasing more material. ‘A Sharer In Demons’ clearly showcase that Mean Joe is a force to be reckoned with. Great stuff!


Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The Xroadie Files

Noctorum – The Afterlife
Marty Wilson Piper – Vocals/Guitar/Bass/Swedish Cittra, Dare Mason – Keyboards, Olivis Wilson Piper – BG Vocals, Richard Evans – Trumpet, Steve Jackson – Drums

The Moon Drips melodies that just flow all around you and envelop your soul this song has a sort of spaghetti western feel. High Tide Low Tide just get up sway to the rhythm and sing along to a very catchy tune. Piccadilly Circus In The Rain strumming guitars solid rhythms that just grab your attention and have you enjoying this melodic song. Show has a very floating rhythm that will have you drifting away on the notes. A Resurrected Man guitars that just pierce your heart and a melody that sticks with you take an amazing musical journey. A Girl With No Love is very catchy will have you up on your feet dancing and swaying to the rhythm. Trick close your eyes and drift away on the melodic tones. Head On takes you on a strange mind trip that will be amazing. The Afterlife take a trip back to the psychedelic folky 60s and just remember the good times. In A Field Full Of Sheep slow melodies flow all around and envelop you just enjoy the ride.

Without Light - The Dread Gospels
Jamie Danger – Vocals/Bass, Angel Onofre – Guitar, Eric Sanchez – Guitar, Luke Schriven – Drums

Behold! The Wurm dark heavy death destruction and mayhem. In Depths Of Sleep 9 minutes of dark depressive heavy music to drag you thru hell. Terror As Currency slow melancholic dark music that pulls you into the black abyss of nothingness with deep demonic vocals. Facing The Monolith dissonant tones melancholic dark and aggressive, like being run over slowly by a steamroller. Ascent Into Madness pulls you into the deepest recesses of your mind into the darkness and despair and loneliness of blackness.     When The Cities Burn plucking dark tones that just seem to pull you into a dark dimension of fear and loathing. New Plague dissonant harmonics that just pierce thru your very essence.

Besta – Eterno Rancor
Lafayette - Drums, Gaza - Bass, Rick Chain - Guitar, Paulo Rui - Vocals

Diamorte dissonant harmonics grinding guitars pounding drums thundering bass and harsh vocals. Falsa Arte fats heavy punch you right in the throat grind core metal mayhem. Apostolo Do Terror grabs you throws you into a wall and just pummels you to death. Sincronismo Do Mal hit the pit slam and sweat till you pass out. Sangue Morto hard aggressive grab you by the balls and just slam you around music. Repudio Alarmante hard heavy aggression that just beats you into small pieces. Um Nas Sombas chainsaw riff thundering bass pounding drums and growling demonic vocals. Sopbro Do Tirano pulls you into the darkness and just has you running for your very soul. Oficio Da Mentira screaming shredding pounding thrashing music. O Caminho Da Mao Esquerda pounding in your head that just won’t go away. Neoselvagens grab ahold and hold on for your very existence just fist pump and thrash about. Azul, Vermelho E Branco music that just pulls you into the very depths of darkness. Porco Azul grinding thrashing shredding slamming sweating metal mayhem. Saco Azul slow plodding darkness envelops you before it just pummels you into submission. Amigo Toxico just pulls you into the pits of hell screaming and clawing. The Regulator (Bad Brains Cover) thundering bass crunchy guitars fast punk like drums and vocals just hang on for the wild ride.

Black Sites – Exile
Mark Sugar – Guitar/Vocals, Ryan Bruchert – Guitar, Garry Naples – Drums, Jose Salazar – Bass

The Night They Came For You plucking bass chugging riffs pounding rhythms and interesting vocals has a Tool feel to the music. To The Fire fist in the air pumping head banging riff that just grabs ahold of you just enjoy and sing along. Feral Child excellent drums thundering bass crunchy guitars and great vocals. Coal City melodic guitars soulful vocals searing leads as the song grows heavier and full of emotions till the last note. Dream Long Dead overdriven guitars a catchy rhythm that just grabs ahold for you get up and rock out. Focused Totality The Psychic Knife fast heavy thrash speed prog metal riffs and powerful vocals. Prolonging has a great melody some amazing bass and drum work chugging guitars with powerful vocals. Dwell Upon the End dark heavy Sabbath style riffs take a wild trip thru your very mind and jam away.

Ultra Silvam – The Spearwound Salvation

MA – Bass/Vocals, OR – Guitar, AL - Drums

The Spearwound Salvation just pummels you with shredding guitars pounding drums thundering bass and dark vocals. Odesalnes Uppenbarelse pulls you into a pit of darkness and aggression. Birth Of A Mountain a heaviness fall over you as it just slams you with full on hatred. Forintelsens Andevasen dissonant guitars pounding rhythms dark demonic vocals just pull you into hell. Wings Of Burial dark majestic tones flow all around and pull you into a black abyss of nothingness. A Skull Full Of Stars a full on punch in the throat blast of aggression and demonic possession. The First Wound crunchy chain saw riffs pounding rhythms that just take you over as you sweat and slam away.


Monday, March 25, 2019

Twin-Guitar Pioneers Wishbone Ash To Kick Off 2019 US Spring Tour

UK classic rock legends Wishbone Ash US Tour begins April 10, 2019!

In the ramp-up to Wishbone Ash's 50th anniversary, the band is celebrating its 49th year in characteristic fashion: with an extended tour. Dubbed XLIX (49 in Roman numerals), the tour began in October 2018 in the UK, followed by early-2019 dates in Europe and Japan. This spring, XLIX arrives on these shores.

Longtime fans and new converts alike will revel in the group’s signature twin-guitar mastery and powerhouse rhythm section as they present classics spanning their career.

The US leg of the XLIX Tour will revisit some of the band's favorite venues as well as new ones from the Eastern seaboard to the Rocky Mountains.

“We always look forward to meeting old friends and fans alike on our annual Midwest and East Coast tours,” says founding member Andy Powell. “American audiences are so supportive and enthusiastic!”

Formed in 1969 in London, England, Wishbone Ash is one of the most influential guitar bands in the history of rock. True road warriors, each year they log around 30,000 miles, roughly equivalent to circumnavigating the earth.

Mark Abrahams, the group's newest member, has been trading licks with Powell for two years. Right out of the gate, Abrahams earned rave reviews from critics and fans on both sides of the Atlantic. Longtime rhythm section Bob Skeat on bass and Joe Crabtree on drums continue to provide the solid groove that is their hallmark.

By 1969, The Beatles, the blues boom and psychedelia had made their impact on classic rock, and the creative possibilities were infinite. Pioneering the use of twin lead guitars, Wishbone Ash jumped on board the burgeoning progressive rock scene. Taking full advantage of the fertile musical environment, they produced a distinctive brand of melodic rock.

Inspired equally by British folk traditions, American jazz and R&B, the group played to public and critical acclaim. Power and melody have made the Ash a hard act to follow, while they are currently being discovered by new generations of loyal rock fans.

Through the years the band has delved into various musical genres, from folk, blues and jazz to pedal-to-the-metal rock and electronica. Whatever the style, Wishbone Ash’s signature is the distinctive twin-melodic lead guitar interplay that has influenced such bands as Thin Lizzy, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Iron Maiden and, more recently, Opeth.

The quintessential road band, Wishbone Ash has gained worldwide recognition based firmly on a regime of relentless touring.

“The band basically lives together year-round on the road, so we have a very strong level of communication that translates in our performances and recordings,” says Powell. “We’ve come to an era where the industry has to pigeonhole a band as Classic Rock, Prog Rock, Heritage Rock and so on. The truth is that we have always kept our options open and always relied on the musicianship of the players to lead the way. It’s fun to be stylistically diverse and this has, in its way, contributed to our longevity.”

Wishbone Ash has to its credit 24 original studio recordings, 11 live albums and five live DVDs along with a DVD rockumentary (“This is Wishbone Ash”). Released April 2018, “The Vintage Years” 30-disc box set, three-and-a-half years in the making, is a special collection dedicated to the band's output from 1970 to 1991, including all 16 studio albums, three live albums, eight previously unreleased live shows from 1973 to 1980, a 156-page coffee-table hardcover book and an assortment of memorabilia.

Also available is the fifth Roadworks CD, “Live in Sacramento,” recorded on the 2018 North American tour; and the first official re-releases in decades of “Twin Barrels Burning” from 1982 and “Raw to the Bone” from 1985. In addition, some older recordings are emerging from the vaults, including Snapper Records’ most recent release, “Live in Glasgow” from 1977. The legendary and eagerly awaited “Live from Rockpalast” TV show recording from 1970s Germany will also soon be available on the label Made in Germany Music.

In 2015, Powell released his musical memoir, “Eyes Wide Open: True Tales of a Wishbone Ash Warrior,” co-written with renowned Irish music journalist Colin Harper and available in Kindle and Apple iBook formats.

“It’s quite an undertaking to put 46 years of being a touring musician in this one band into book form,” he says. “I’ve seen a lot of changes in the music business and the world in general, as you can imagine.”

There is no other rock band in history that has done more with the twin guitar concept than Wishbone Ash. Be sure to catch them on the XLIX US Tour in April-May 2019, and stay tuned for the 50th anniversary tour in 2020!

Tour dates and more information can be found at:

April 10 - The Soiled Dove - Denver, CO
April 12 - Knuckleheads - Kansas City, MO
April 13 - Wildey Theatre - Edwardsville, IL – SOLD OUT
April 14 - Wildey Theatre - Edwardsville, IL – SOLD OUT
April 16 - River Music Experience - Davenport, IA
April 17 - Wilebski's Blues Saloon - St. Paul, MN
April 18 - Back Room @ Colectivo - Milwaukee, WI
April 19 - Arcada Theatre - St. Charles, IL
April 20 - Fur Peace Ranch - Pomeroy, OH – SOLD OUT
April 22 - Club Cafe - Pittsburgh, PA
April 24 - Sportsmen's Tavern - Buffalo, NY
April 25 - Daryl's House Club - Pawling, NY
April 26 - Bull Run - Shirley, MA
April 27 - Boulton Center - Bay Shore, NY
April 28 - Sellersville Theater - Sellersville, PA
April 30 - The Tin Pan - Richmond, VA
May 1 - The Blue Note Grill - Durham, NC
May 2 - Rams Head on Stage - Annapolis, MD
May 3 - Mauch Chunk Opera House - Jim Thorpe, PA
May 4 - The Record Collector - Bordentown, NJ

Sunday, March 24, 2019

FIRE DOWN BELOW debuts new video single, prepares for an active live season of touring and festival dates

New video for "Ignition / Space Cruiser" streaming now at this location via the 666MrDoom YouTube Channel

FIRE DOWN BELOW's new video for "Ignition / Space Cruiser," the song Revolver Magazine called, "the aural equivalent of a rocket shooting off into space," premieres this week through heavy/stoner/doom YouTube curator 666MrDoom.

The part-lyric/part-live video is released this week to coincide with the band's announcement of its touring plans over the coming months, which include plenty of live gigs as well as festival slots at Alcatraz Festival, American Rock Festival, and of course, RippleFest Europe this weekend.

The band's current live schedule is as follows:

March 22 – AK44, Giessen (Germany) with Plainride, The Trikes, PlasmaJet
March 23 – RippleFest Europe, Cologne (Germany)
March 24 – Willem Twee Poppodium, Den Bosch (Netherlands) with Plainride and The Trikes
April 6 – Sojus 7, Monheim (Germany) with Powder For Pidgeons
April 20 – Jeugdhuis De Paravang, Middelkerke (Belgium) with Atomic Vulture and Elefar
April 24 – VK, Brussels (Belgium) with Naxatras
April 26 – JC Ten Goudberge, Wevelgem (Belgium)
May 3 – 4AD, Diksmuide (Belgium) with Stoned Jesus
May 11 – Barthel Barst, Rekkem (Belgium)
June 9 – Statierock, Sijsele (Belgium) 
June 17 – Kinky Star, Gent (Belgium) with Craneium
June 28 – Grensrock, Menen (Belgium)
July 6 – De Kelder, Zulte (Belgium) with Your Highness, Von Detta, Turpintine Valley
August 11 – Alcatraz Festival, Kortrijk (Belgium)
August 24 – American Rock Festival, Bastogne (Bastogne)

Fire Down Below continues to support Hymn of the Cosmic Man, their latest album on Ripple Music that the mysterious Angry Metal Guy acclaimed, "the catchiest, most riff-laden album I’ve heard so far; an album that has easily landed in my mid-year Top Ten list."

The album is available directly from Ripple Music's webstore and Bandcamp.

Stream the new video for "Ignition / Space Cruiser" here.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Raging Bull Premiere Their New Single "Waiting"!

Raging Bull is a London-based blues/rock outfit that has been around since 2014, building a following with their “guns-a-blazing” stage performances. Despite being made up of only 3 members, Raging Bull delivers a heavy, raw energy with enough honest blues-rock feel to take you back to the glory days of the great rock n roll bands. With the release of their first self-titled EP back in 2016 receiving rave reviews, their upcoming single release of the track ‘Waiting’ is a much anticipated event.

Listen To 'Waiting' Now!
“We had a lot of fun creating this track. Like all of our music, we start off very organically, with one of us pitching ideas and the others contributing until we find exactly what feels right and hopefully sounds good! We recorded the track at The Attic Production in North London. It’s a small studio with some really nice gear so we were lucky to be able to work there. It has such a great vibe. As the title suggests, the single is about Waiting. As musicians especially, we can find ourselves waiting around a lot; Whether we are waiting for the right time to release a track, or do that amazing gig or waiting to ‘make it big’ (whatever that means) - it’s always a whole lot of hanging around. This got me thinking about how much time we all spend in anticipation of stuff happening instead of actually making it happen for ourselves.”

Thursday, March 21, 2019

MONOLORD: Begin Recording New Album; US Tour Dates Next Month

Swedish hard rock trio MONOLORD have entered Let Them Swing Studio to begin recording their soon-to-be fourth studio album and Relapse debut. The yet-to-be-titled album is expected to be released Fall 2019. Stay tuned for more updates.

Additionally, MONOLORD return to North America this Spring. The headlining tour begins April 19 in San Diego, CA and ends May 11 in Orange County, CA, and includes festival appearances at the inaugural Desert Fest NYC & Psycho Smokeout. More information about these fests can be found HERE.

MONOLORD will also tour Europe throughout the Summer. The tour begins May 30 in Copenhagen, DK and ends June 22 at Freak Valley Festival. A full list of confirmed tour dates is available below.

MONOLORD Tour Dates:

--- US Headline Tour Apr 19- May 11 ---
Apr 19 San Diego, CA @ Brick By Brick
Apr 20 Los Angeles, CA @ Psycho Smokeout 420
Apr 21 Phoenix, AZ @ Club Red
Apr 22 Albuquerque, NM @ Sister Bar
Apr 24 Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
Apr 25 Austin, TX @ Barracuda
Apr 26 Houston, TX @ Secret Group
Apr 27 Little Rock, AR @ White Water
Apr 28 New York, NY @ Desert Fest NYC (w/ Windhand)
Apr 29 Chicago, IL @ Empty Bottle
Apr 30 St. Louis, MO @ Fubar or Blueberry Hill
May 01 Omaha, NE @ Slowdown
May 02 Denver, CO @ Hi-Dive
May 03 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
May 04 Boise, ID @ Neurolux
May 05 Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey
May 06 Vancouver, BC @ Astoria
May 07 Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
May 09 Sacramento, CA @ Blue Lamp
May 10 Berkeley, CA @ Cornerstone
May 11 Orange County, CA @ Marty’s

-- Summer European Headline Tour May 30 - June 22 ---
May 30 Copenhagen, DK @ Stengade
May 31 Hamburg, DE @ Molotow
June 01 Nijmegen, NL @ Fortarock Festival
June 02 Dusseldorf, DE @ Pitcher
June 03 Dortmund, DE @ Junkyard Club
June 14 Hannover, DE @ Cafe Glocksee
June 15 Warsaw, PL @ Smoke Over Warsaw Festival
June 16 Krakow, PL @ Zet Pe Te
June 17 Prague, CZ @ Modra Vopice
June 18 Salzburg, AT @ Rockhouse
June 19 Munich, DE @ Backstage Club
June 21 Leipzig, DE @ Hellraiser
June 22 Siegen, DE @ Freak Valley Festival
Aug 08-10 Moledo, PT @ Sonic Blast

Formed in Gothenburg in 2013, MONOLORD quickly burst onto the scene releasing three critically-acclaimed full-lengths in a four-year span (Empress Rising, Vænir and Rust) on RidingEasy Records all while touring relentlessly around the globe. MONOLORD is a rare breed: A band both encompassing and transcending genre; a vortex of heavy rock density that consumes all others. The band’s enveloping, syrupy sludge is a state of mind, with guitarist/vocalist Thomas Jäger, drummer Esben Willems and bassist Mika Häkki create a massive, dynamic sound with ultra-low frequencies serving as its fourth member. MONOLORD’s yet-to-be-titled fourth studio album is expected to be released in late 2019. Stay tuned for more information.

Stream MONOLORD’s discography on Bandcamp HERE, Spotify HERE and Apple Music HERE.


Wednesday, March 20, 2019

The Xroadie Files

Shumaun – One Day Closer To Yesterday
Farhad Hossain – Vocals/Guitar/Keyboards, Jose Mora – Bass, Tyler Kim – Guitar, TanvirTomal – Drums

Sensus Divinitatis emotional tones float thru the air and envelop you pulling you along with some powerful vocals. The Writings On The Wall is a very jazzy prog rock song with some amazing musicianship and singing just hang on for the ride. Fear Is emotional guitars just grab you and then close your eyes for a magical journey. Nafsi Ammarais a very catchy heavy riff that will have you up and grooving along as you also sing along.  City Of Gold very melodic and emotional. Central Station strumming guitars soulful vocals. Prove Yourself has a very catchy groove that will have the entire crowd up and swaying along. Go grab you air guitars and just jam along. Remember Me And I Will Remember You slow moody then it picks up with a crunchy riff and full of many emotions. One Day Closer To Yesterday close your eyes and just take a magical prog rock journey.

DarWin – Origin of Species
Darwin – Guitar/Songwriter, Simon Phillips – Drums/Percussion/Keyboards, Matt Bissonette – Vocals/Bass, Jeff Babko – Keyboards, Greg Howe – Guitar, Dennis Hamm – Keyboards, Ernst Tibbs – Bass, KatisseBuckingham – Flute/Soprano Sax, Samuel Slim/Peter Nickalls – Orchestra Arrangements, The Origin Of Species Quartet, The Reykjavik String Quartet, The Chamber Orchestra Of London

Disc 1 – For Humanity is a very slow groove jazz prog rock/metal song with some excellent musicianship and powerful vocals. The Last Chance soaring keyboards crunchy guitar riff pounding rhythms just stand up and get ready to rock out. Taking Chances sounds of an ocean and spoken words then melodic guitars flow all around and emotional vocals with some searing leads. Escape The Maze floating keyboards classical orchestra that slowly builds to a majestic ending. Gummy Bear great sing along chorus vocals a catchy riff that just grabs ahold of you then just kick back and sing along. Forever just sitting back and enjoying some tunes with friends.

Disc 2 – War Against My Mind hard heavy full of emotion stand up and shout it out with some amazing leads. Artificial spoken words then a crunchy riff pounding beat and interesting bluesy tempo change with great vocals. One Horizon tones flow all around and bring back many memories and emotions. Modern Humanity has a very danceable beat that just take you over and gets you up and grooving. Cosmic Rays guitars that just flow with classical instruments and female vocals that grab at your heart the song builds as it continues with some searing leads. Walk Away From Earth slow jazzy emotional music spoken words just get ready for a very magical journey. Life Is A Mystery get up groove and sway to the rhythm just enjoy. Slowly Melting prog keyboards flowing piano emotional guitars and soulful vocals. Rise guitars strumming slow rhythms classical sounds then about midway the song picks up then has some soaring leads. Just One More Day has a very bluesy riff with some powerful vocals and great musicianship just rock and sway to the rhythm. Prologue spoken words then a great prog rock song.

Gender Fluids –Incorrigible
John Cooter Meloncramp – Vocals, Ben Assflex – Guitar, Kurt Loader – Bass, Palm Cruise – Drums

Lined In Chalk hard heavy dissonant sounds that just grind you into a pulp. We Deserve Worse hard slow pounding in your head that just rips at your insides. The Cold Chambers dissonant crunchy overdriven guitars with pounding rhythms and demonic vocals. DIMOV grabs you and just slams you against a wall of hatred. Licking the Palms Clean pulls you into the black abyss of death destruction and agony.

Death Beast – The Onslaught
Eviscerator  Of  Idiotic Losers – Guitar/Bass, Axecutioner Of The Worthless – Guitar, Black Tormentor Of Scenester Wussies – Drums, NotoruisButcherusPoseurii – Vocals

Your Fucking Doomed hit the pit slam and sweat as the guitars shred and bass and drums pound. Devastator screams thrashing ripping shredding tearing aggression. The Onslaught fist pumping head banging bodies slamming thrash metal mayhem. Drink Till You Die hit the floor hit the lights and just shred away. Switch 666 screaming leads slow plodding rhythms that builds till the end. Battle Plan crunchy guitars screaming vocals pounding drum thundering bass just head bang away. Plague Beast dark heavy emotional metal music that just takes you over. Hell On Earth thrashing shredding ripping tearing slamming metal. The Blackest Night fist in the air head banging thrash metal. High N Dry (Saturday Night) very interesting cover of the Def Leppard classic.

Obsecration –Aeternam Inferni  / Putrefied Remains – Unborn Hate (Split)
Costas Undead – Vocals, Alex – Guitar, Jim -  Bass, Ungod - Drums

Aeternam Inferni Intro eerie sounds envelop you. In Search Of Wisdom And Carnal Pleasures dark heavy pounding demonic sounds that just grab at you. Beyond The Walls Of The Graveyard chainsaw guitars pounding drums thundering bass and deep growling vocals. At The Mansion Of Obscure Misery eerie sounds that pull you into the dark abyss and just rip and tear at your very soul. The Wolf Eating You Alive chugging thrashing ripping tearing at your very being. The Mourning Of Lost Live pounding in your brain driving you mad as it builds in intensity. Room From The Dark Season aggression terror and feat just swallow you entirely. Anthropophagia (I Was Hungry Again!!!!!) A.D. 2015 chugging grinding fist pumping driving aggression.

NekroShaman – Vocals, ThalexiMasthas – Guitar, Jie Mutilator – Bass, Lan Azimuth – Drums

My Diabolical Ancient Entity dark evil sounds that just pull you into the black abyss as they terrorize you. The Curse By Pagan’s Spells lost in the dark woods surrounded by evil and mayhem. The Darkling Thrush eerie sounds swallow you into a black darkness of hate and fear. Novus Ordo Seclorum thrashing ripping tearing devouring of your very essence. Bring Me The Light fast heavy pounding in your head as the blood drips and you run for your life. Ministry Of Darkness And Evil just pummels you into a bloody mess. Drowning In Blood darkness death and mayhem just envelop you. The Curse Of Sorceressevil rises and just envelops the earth in darkness and destruction.

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