Thursday, 17 April 2014

Salem's Pot - '...Lurar ut dig på prärien’ (Album Review)


Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 29/4/2014
Label : Easy Rider Records

‘…Lurar ut dig på prärien’, album track listing :

1). Creep Purple 14:28
2). Dear Death 09:52
3). Notting Hill 09:12

Review :

There is nothing ordinary about Swedish doom/stoner outfit Salem’s Pot, from the band name, the album title (something in Swedish I presume) as well as its bizarre evocative semi pornographic cover art, and this perception is conjured before I’ve even heard their music. As expected, normality doesn’t factor musically either.  Along similar lines as Electric Wizard, Orchid and like any doom band an obligatory nod to Black Sabbath, Salem’s Pot latest offering is an acid drenched, mind bending and ultimately gripping listen. All contained within three epic tracks.

The odd sci-fi spacey sounds that introduce first track Creep Purple (these guys are clearly into a bit of word play) affirms the peculiar energy that permeates into the core of their music. Initially constructed around a distorted, dawdling doom riff, then taking flight with a wailing guitar solo and up tempo groovy riff, before returning back to the thick beguiling sounds of doom, this fourteen and a half minute hazy onslaught is mightily captivating. Inundated with oppressive distorted tones and cavernous heavily reverbed yet distinguishable vocals, Dr. Death is heavy and majestically trippy. Also incorporating an accordion it adds an almost creepy vintage horror movie vibe, as well as another dimension to the blurred layers of sound. Whilst the accordion may seem a little odd, final track Nothing Hill goes one step further and features in my opinion the most underrated instrument in existence, the cowbell. Within the slightly mental realm of Salem’s Pot, it totally works.

Whilst I’m sure this album would be undoubtedly enhanced by some form of hallucinogenics, the music is a trippy head fuck in itself. There are an abundance of bands in the same vein as Salem’s Pot, the aforementioned Electric Wizard for example; however these guys march to the beat of their own drum.

‘…Lurar ut dig på prärien’ is an album that entices you in to its obscure, consuming stoner doom. A solid release from the Swedes, I look forward to future offerings.

Words by : Heather Blewett

You can get it here

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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Twilight - III: BENEATH TRIDENT'S TOMB (Album Review)


Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 17/3/2014
Label : Century Media Records

III: BENEATH TRIDENT'S TOMB, album track listing :

01. Lungs (03:51)
02. Oh Wretched Son (08:44)
03. Swarming Funeral Mass (07:38)
04. Seek No Shelter Fevered Ones (08:45)
05. A Flood Of Eyes (07:54)
06. Below Lights (04:14)
Bio :

Through its tumultuous existence, Twilight has struggled to define just what it was. Actually, it’s been the public struggling to define the band. Black metal supergroup? The members would scoff at this. Originally started by N. Imperial (Krieg), Wrest (Leviathan, Lurker of Chalice), Malefic (Xasthur), Blake Judd (Nachtmystium) and Hildolf (Draugar), one would argue this being the ultimate kult supergroup. Their debut album was recording by mailing cassette tapes back and forth between the members. Shortly after it was released they announced they broke up. They never played a show and never planned on it. Most of the members refused to do interviews for the project, if that’s what one would call it.

Almost 5 years later a second album was announced, as was new members. Monument to Time End saw Hildolf and Malefic not in the fold but Sanford Parker (Minsk, Corrections House), Stavros Giannopolous (The Atlas Moth) and Aaron Turner (Isis) contributing to the project. Was ‘project’ the best way to describe Twilight? Demand for the band to perform was extremely high though quickly shot down. Promotion again kept to the minimum. Twilight seemed like it was more of an outlet for some of the most creative musicians in the underground to get together and jam than anything else. Did anything else matter?

The Twilight lore started to grow even strong when it was rumored that Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) had joined the band. Moore had mentioned in interviews his taste for USBM and through mutual friends, was put in touch with Parker. A few months later, N. Imperial, Wrest, Giannopolous, Parker, Moore and Judd got together in a Chicago studio and wrote and recorded III: Beneath Trident’s Tomb. Released as a digipack and LP (1000 pressed worldwide, 700 on purple vinyl, 300 on black) on March 18th, once again it will leave fans wondering what Twilight is. III is much more an experimental album than its predecessors. It’s a dark, uncomfortable listen.

Twilight has already announced they are breaking up, Judd, one of the founding members is absent from the album. In the end, Twilight’s legacy will be shrouded in mystery and debate but whatever Twilight is, band, project or collaboration, they have undeniable released some of the most unique albums in the underground ever

The Band :

N. Imperial | Vocals
Wrest | Drums/Bass/Vocals
Stavros Giannopoulos  | Guitars/Vocals
Sanford Parker | Synths/Electronics/Production
Thurston Moore | Guitar/Vocals

Review :

Twilight are kinda like the Traveling Wilburys of black metal. I hesitate to use the term 'supergroup', but they pretty much full on qualify for it. Their ranks past and present are swollen with luminaries from the field of US BM, but also from more unexpected quarters. Wrest, Imperial, Sanford Parker, one time Aaron Turner and Blake Judd, and for this final outing... Thurston Moore.

That's right, Thurston Moore. He of the Sonic Youth. Which does make for a kool (guffaw) fit when you consider that historically that legendary band's output was primarily centred around the same shrieking manipulation of guitars that can be found within BM. I know it's narrow minded but imagine him in corpse paint. Got that mental image? Good. You're welcome.

On paper it all seems quite the intrigue, like a Poirot mystery but with probably better music. And luckily that translates well to the reality of the situation too, as 'III: Beneath Trident's Tomb' is an unorthodox but fully enjoyable wealth of heavy handed feel. It's not your average black metal record, but what is these days? The genre has become much more than a caricature of itself in modern times, even though I have already made a corpse paint joke (sorry).

'Lungs' has an almost noise rock feel to it in terms of pace, like if Unsane were born of Norway instead of NY. That same sort of slow scrape flows throughout and melds well with Imperial's (Krieg) vocals. And you can really hear those Moore guitars too. I didn't really know what to expect when I approached this, but the more you pick away at the sound the more you can hear his influence. And as the song progresses it definitely seems more of a natural union.

'Swarming Funereal Mass' is slow burning and slinky number, laced with grim and grimy flavours. It's my personal favourite from the LP, speaking to my fondness for keeping a winding but steady pace. Not as heavy or frenetic in any way as some other aspects of 'III', but it still manages to crank up the riffs towards it's finale with some satisfyingly simplistic crunch.

The start of 'A Flood Of Eyes' brings to mind the same electronic experimentalism of the recent Gnaw album, that kind of dying machine wail that scared the shit out of me. As I noted earlier this ain't your momma's BM album, not just a swirling mass of blast-beats and bullet belts. The genre has become so intelligent in recent times and this is proof.  Textured, layered and, well, musical. It's extreme in so much that it really isn't. This soft(ish) approach is quite disarming. For fans of banging heads though it still nails in with some heavy laden drums at times, and it exhibits it's strength through volume and power as opposed to speed. Really good stuff.

It seems a shame that this is the final Twilight album. Not in terms of poor quality, quite the opposite. But if you'll pardon the upbeat tone I am grateful. I hope that they are proud of bowing out with a strong final accomplishment, because they should be. 'III' is dark, menacing and genre boundary pushing. Never judge a black metal book by its cover, and don't expect black metal dogs to be unable to learn new tricks. I hold my hands up and fully acknowledge my more than pleasant surprise. Highly recommended.

Words by : Matt Fitton

You can get it here

For more information :


The Oath - S/T (Album Review)


Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 17/3/2014
Label : Rise Above Records

The Oath, album track listing :
1. All Must Die
2. Silk Road
3. Night Child
4. Leaving Together
5. Black Rainbow
6. Silver and Dust
7. Death Delight
8. In Dream
9. Psalm 7

The Band

Linnéa Olsson | Guitars
Johanna Sadonis | Vocals

Review :

The Oath are the latest band to be blessed with Rise Above's attention. Determinedly retro and hard rocking, All Must Die kicks things off with a swinging tempo and lots of bass runs. There is a distinct garage rock vibe to the riffing while the vocals take on the witchy kind of style that Blood Ceremony present.

The Oath are not as musically diverse as some within the doom genre- this is straight ahead hard rock out of the 70's with doom inflections in the themes and riffs. Satan gets mentioned early, just in case you are in any doubt.

Silk Road follows with a small build up and then gets down to business- again the tempo is groove some with a couple of changes here and there. Night Child is a propulsive rocker with a dark flavour to the main riff. Leaving Together has a more sombre guitar opening and caries on the atmospherics into the verse- things get heavier, though...

Black Rainbow is up-tempo with vocal melodies that follow the changes in the riff. Half time surfaces and then the track switches back and forth effectively. Silver and Dust has an insistent riff and good pacing with a nice breakdown and change section in the latter half.

Death Delight has strong vocals/melodies that are well delivered and propel the track along. In Dream, meanwhile, honours the time honoured tradition of a two minute acoustic track- very welcome- and it acts as an ideal primer for the closing epic Psalm 7. Slow to start, the track builds in layers with guitar and voice, bass and so on until the heaviness comes in after a rather dreamy few minutes.

All in all, this a self assured debut, brimming with riffs and retro sounds. Is it worthy of the attention that has been bestowed upon it? Only one way to find out...

Words : Richard Maw

You can get it here

For more information :



Monday, 14 April 2014

A Province Of Thay - The Grieving - Album Review

The Grieving cover art

Album TypeAlbum
Date Released: 18th October 2013
Label: Self Released

The Grieving - track listing:

1.All We Know Is Loss 06:36
2.A Legacy In The Trees 09:32
3.The Vessel And The Heart 05:41
4.A Sovereign Will 08:04
5.The Herald 05:06

Bio

A Province of Thay is the brainchild of a few nerds who wanted to tell you a story about the desperation of human nature. they chronicle the lives of two fictional characters as they tightly cling onto a perception of happiness, while their reality spirals out of control.

We want to tell you a story about the desperation of human nature. The Grieving is the first of many chronicles of two fictional characters as they tightly cling onto a perception of happiness, while their reality spirals out of control.

The Band Members:

Guitar-Tyler Shannon
Bass- Gianni Sbisa
Guitar/Vocals- Ronald Navarro
Keys- Dylan Abbott
Drums- Heather Davis

Review:

A Province Of Thay are from Seattle. And there is not a grunge note in sight as the band are more of a progressive post-rock/post-metal combo with slight elements of Doom and Ambient lurking in the background. They released their stunning debut album – The Grieving – late last year. Trust me to be late in listening to such a fantastic and quality sounding album.

A Province Of Thay are different from your normal Post-Metal bands as they have written an intriguing story on The Grieving. It's an album packed full of many emotions that will tug at the hardest of emotionally distant heart strings. The band have struck the perfect balance between intense Post-Metal riffs and anthemic Post-Rock vibes that brings back memories of Mono when the band are in full flight.

The haunting vocals of lead vocalist Ronald gives this album pure HEART and SOUL. As his vocals drift from heavy rock vocals to soothing emotionally wrought vocals that wouldn’t go amiss from the legendary shoegaze scene. Ronald is on his element on the album's stand-out track – A Legacy In The Trees. An almost 10 minute track that will have your heart beat pumping 100 times faster. And your the more better for it after listening to it.

A Province Of Thay are incredible musicians as they have written an intricate 35 minute album that shows their undeniable talent to the world. The band believe in the art of progressive rock/metal as the album is built upon some highly impressive progressive based riffs.

It may end on an abrupt note but I think this is for the best as it means the band will most definitely be back with the next chapter of this highly intriguing story.

Look if you want something different to check out in the realm of Post-Metal. Something with brains, heart and an eternal soul then The Grieving is the album for you. It truly is a magical and mysterious album you won't forget in a long time.

It's available on BandCamp Buy Now Download. So headover and download this excellent album now. You won't be sorry.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Check The Band From Links Below:


Written by Steve Howe

Arson Under The Sea - S/T E/P Review

EP cover art

Album Type:EP
Date Released: 16th Feb 2014
Label: Self Released

Arson Under The Sea S/T EP - track listing:

1.From the Sky 04:08
2.Evil is Undying 04:07
3.Let It End 05:46
4.Celebration 04:43
5.We Burn 04:54
6.Other Side 04:38

The Band Members:

Mikko -Vocals
Tero - Guitar
Markus - Guitar
Rami - Bass, Vocals
Kalle -Drums

Review:

Here is a brutal Sludge/Doom Metal band Finland to check out. Arson Under The Sea will blow your fucking mind with their hard-hitting style of crushing Sludge and Doom Metal riffage with a dangerous Hardcore Punk vibe thrown in just for the hell of it.

Their debut S/T EP is 29 mins of soul destroying and bone crunching carnage that will fuck up your entire day. It's brutal from the word go. Arson Under The Sea are one explosive unit you cannot ignore.

I urge you all to download this now. This EP features 6 stunning tracks showing a band who don't fuck about with their music. If you want heavy pummelling brutal music to unleash your anger to then this is the EP for you. First track - From The Sky – shows what this band is all about. And it ain't a pretty sight.

This EP is powerful to give you nightmares for a very long time. But the band do know how to play some epic riffs when the time calls for it. It's a mixture of fast-paced riffs against more slower paced riffs when the time calls for it. But it's still one loud exercise in brutal noise.

Arson Under The Sea definitely have something about them and this EP proves that they are definitely worth your time in checking them out. An outstanding debut EP which will unleash the fury in all of you!!!

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!! - You can download this now on BandCamp Buy Now. There is a Cassette Tape being sold as well if you want a physical release.

Awesome Stuff.

Check The Band From Links Below:


Written by Steve Howe

HORNSS - No Blood, No Sympathy - Album Review


Album Type:Album
Date Released: May 13th 2014
Label: EasyRider Records

No Blood, No Sympathy - track listing:

1. The Red Death (4:26)
2. Troubled Rose (2:01)
3. Maker Of The Moons (3:00)
4. Heir To The Pickle Throne
5. War Gods Of The Deep (3:41)
6. Graceless And Aged (1:50)
7. Ejaculation Of Serpents (3:50)
8. Haunter of the Dark (4:11)
9. Debreeding (2:15)
10. Arzach (3:02)
11. Below the Root (2:20)
12. Vine Priest (2:20

Bio:

Unlike some who are content to adopt that desert sound, San Franciscan trio HORNSS were born into it. Moulded by it from the very beginning in the case of members Mike Moracha and Nick Nava, who originally got their start in the Palm Springs band Solarfeast alongside ex-Kyuss/Evolution’s End member Chris Cockrell.

Formed in 2010 with a line-up completed by drummer Bil Bowman (formerly of Zodiac Killers, blackQueen and Scrog) HORNSS have taken to the stage in support of Fatso Jetson, Naam, Windhand, YOB and The Freeks and are every inch the band you’d hope they would be given the ancestry, influence and arid air that forged their formation.

Thanks to the LA based label EasyRider Records, this May the trio will have a debut album to call their own. Recorded at Earhammer Studios in Oakland with Greg Wilkinson, if you were sold on the strutting doom groove of their demo The Red Death then No Blood, No Sympathy is going to blow your mind and then some. Drawing on influences such as Hawkwind, St. Vitus and The Ramones HORNSS deliver devastating doom, death punk fury (both Mike and Nick were also founding members of San Fran punk band The Jack Saints), stoned out meanderings and crushing desert progressions that will strike a chord no matter where your allegiances lie.

The band take to the road throughout August/September for a European tour in support of their debut album No Blood, No Sympathy, which will be released via EasyRider Records on 13th May.

The Band Members:

Mike Moracha – Guitar, Vocals
Nick Nava – Bass, Vocals
Bil Bowman – Drums

Review:

Hornss are not your usual Stoner Metal band. This is a band with added bite as they add elements of Thrash, Punk and Doom into the mix. Their style of music lies between the depths of punk drenched darkness and Californian Desert fuzz style Stoner Metal riffage.

Hornss debut album – No Blood, No Sympathy – is one weird trippy ride that embraces the crazier and schizophrenic side of rock music. First track – The Red Deaf, perfectly shows what Hornns music is all about. Jagged vocals combine with the sleazy riffs that Hornss play with gutso and relish. It’s a twisted combination of Hard Rock, Stoner Metal, Punk Rock with a hint of added Darkness that will soon have you following the Hornss way of life.

The dual vocals of Mike and Nick give Hornss a two-headed attack of added menace that goes straight for the jugular. They prove what a deadly duo they can be on the 2 minute on the darkly infectious punk blast of Troubled Rose. Which pays homage to 70s Gothic/Horror Punk with gutso though adding a few deft touches of Stoner Metal riffage here and there.

Hornss blast their way through a stunning collection of tracks that adds elements of creepy noises and effects that verge into Doom Metal/Occult Rock territory. Maker of the Moons proves that Hornss love to experiment with their sound and prey on your fears, as nothing is as straight forward as it should be.

Hornss have quite a reputation within the Stoner/Hard Rock scene as they have paid their dues in supporting some legendary bands over the last few years. The band have outdone themselves on the album as they have written a strong collection of spellbinding tracks with enough power and magic to make you fall under their spell. Hornss have pulled no punches with their unique take on Desert Rock/Stoner Metal. At its heart, the album is built on classic based Desert/Stoner Metal riffs though Hornns have taken it down a dark and twisted route, which works wonders for their music.

However, you still have some groovy psychedelic riffs to sing-along to on Ejaculation of Serpents. It’s a groovy psych little rock number that has huge monstrous Stoner Metal riffs that harks back to the days when Fu Manchu, Kyuss and Monster Magnet ruled the Stoner Metal world. This track feels like a love letter to those legendary bands but with added psychedelic FUZZ to make your journey ever so sweeter and trippier. Definitely, my fave track off the album.
Hornss have created something special with this album here. Their music is still very hard to describe even for me and I am well into double figures listening to this album. Let’s just say that Hornss are one of the very best Hard Rock/Stoner Metal bands starting to make a name for themselves and with No Blood, No Sympathy they have created something special indeed.

The best way I can describe this album is the following. – Imagine if Alice Cooper was ever given the chance to front Kyuss then this would be the dark and delicious twisted result. If that doesn’t get you interested then nothing will. Believe the hype folks as this album has it all. End Of.

Kudos to EasyRider Records for signing another quality band to their roster.

Thanks to Richard Jones at Sheltered Life PR and EasyRider Records for sending us a promo to review. The album will be available to buy from May 13th 2014 on Vinyl/CD/DD

Check The Band from links below


Written by Steve Howe

Heavy Glow - Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine - Album Review

Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine cover art

Album Type:Album
Date Released: June 3rd 2014
Label: Purge Records

Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine track listing:

1.45 Shakedown
2.Look What You're Doing To Me
3.Mine All Mine
4.Fat Cat
5.Love Ghost
6.Domino (Black Flowers)
7.Hello September (Goodbye April)
8.Got My Eye On You
9.Nerve Endings
10.Headhunter

Bio:

Heavy Glow new studio album is produced by Michael Patterson (Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross, Beck, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, P. Diddy, Notorious B.I.G., Duran Duran) and Nic Jodoin (BRMC, The Morlocks, Nightmare Air) titled, Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine, is slated for June 3rd, 2014 release date. The band's influences include Motown, Psychedelia, Grunge, Delta Blues, Country Blues, Chicago Blues. As frontman Jared Mullins explains "We dig 60s Detroit, 60s San Francisco, 70s Mid-West, 90s Seattle, 20s-40s Mississippi Delta, 50s Chicago/Chess Records."

"If you dig just-barely-pre-metal hard rock in the manner of Blue Cheer, Cactus, Mountain, Humble Pie, and Mark II Deep Purple, turn off your 'puter and go get this sizzlin' slab right now…" writes Stash Dauber. KTVU Oakland adds “…Heavy Glow delivers a compelling, tuneful sound that mixes elements of head-nodding blues, swirling psychedelia and guitar heft.” The band "weds Grand Funk Railroad muscle with ‘80s guitar god finesse," the Examiner opines.

The album was recorded in Los Angeles at Studio 9. Heavy Glow is Jared Mullins on vocals and guitars, Joe Brooks on bass and St. Judas on drums (touring drummer is Ryan Muller). "I honestly can’t wait for people to hear Pearls and Swine," Mullins explains. "To me it’s a very raw but beautiful depiction of the decaying, dilapidated state of mind I was in while writing it. It’s as close as chaos and creation can be."

Cincinnati City Beat reports that album track “Headhunter” was recently played by the local disc jockey character in CBS’s Under the Dome (season one, episode two), which resulted in a virtual tidal wave of attention for Heavy Glow, a perfect publicity metaphor for the band’s volume, power and intensity."

The album cover was designed by renowned artist Darren Grealish, whose work includes gig posters for Queens of the Stone Age and the Melvins and graces the walls of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The band will tour the U.S. throughout the year.

The Band Members

Jared Mullins-Guitars/Vocals
Joe Brooks-Bass
Ryan Muller-drums
St. Judas-percussion

Review:

Psych Stoner /Blues Rockers – Heavy Glow – return with their eagerly awaited 2nd album – Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine. 3 years after their critically acclaimed debut album Midnight Moan was unleashed upon to the world. So has much changed here. You bet it has. This album is generating a lot of buzz already from the lucky people who have already heard this album. And now you can add me to that list as Heavy Glow have delivered the goods.
A 40-minute album packed full of heavy blues-rock aided a long with a lot of soul. Now this is what a top-notch Classic Psych Stoner Rock band should sound like. Heavy Glow play a more fast-paced proto-rock blues based kind of Stoner Rock and it is a great sound from start to finish.

First track to grab your attention is – 45 Shakedown. A blistering blues based number that will have you rocking out in no time at all. Groovy lyrics that come straight from a crime movie from the 1930s though matched with a modern hard rock twist. Heavy Glow embrace their Classic Rock roots with relish and it sees a very different band seen on their debut album. And that is a very good thing indeed. As Heavy Glow have spent their time away from the limelight wisely and have created a different side to their music.

Though Hard Rock fans should not worry as the album has plenty of hard rock riffs for you to check out. 2nd track – Look What You’re Doing To Me bleeds pure delta-soul mixed with hard-rocking riffs that pack a deep and very heavy soulful punch to the system. Front-man Jared vocals make you feel alive as his vocals have a huge likeability factor you cannot help digging.

3rd track Mine All Mine – has a slight QOTSA feel but with more soul and depth added to the mix. Heavy Glow show their appreciation and love for a whole style of sounds and vibes on this track. Blues, Hard Rock, Soul, Motown and even hints of Stoner Rock. It should not work but it does and that is down to the huge talent involved with this band.
4th track – Fat Cat – is a track that harks back once again to the legendary blues sound with snippets of swamp rock creeping in over and over again. Though the track is a dark cautionary tale that could easily describe the current financial crisis the world has recently gone through and still is in some parts of the world.

The band are on fire through out. They have written spellbinding lyrics and melodies to capture the essence of a band destined for truly great things. If you need more evidence, of how great this album is. Check out tracks such as Domino, Nerve Endings, Got My Eye On You and Headhunter, which appear on the 2nd half of the album.

Heavy Glow prove why they are considered one of the hotly tipped Blues/Stoner Rock bands to make strides in the music scene in 2014. Heavy Glow have released the perfect summer album with Pearls & Swine and Everything’s Fine. As they have blended so many vibes that will appeal to all musical fans of the rock musical spectrum. It truly is a stunning release that will have you coming back time and time again.

Excellent. End Of.

Thanks to Blair at Purge Records for sending a promo for us to review. Pearls & Swine and Everything Fine will be available to buy from all good stockists from June 3rd 2014 on CD and DD.

Check The Band From Links Below


Written by Steve Howe