Purveyors of the Finest Stoner Rock/Doom/Psychedelic/Sludge Since 2008

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April 17, 2014
ORYXDunes of droning hypnotic sludge from the deserts of Las Cruces, NM.
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April 14, 2014
MAMMOTH STORMPlodding, tar-lathered metal-fed groove doom from Sweden.
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April 8, 2014
LADY FLINT Explosive stoner blues rock duo from Marselle, France.
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April 7, 2014
KING DEAD Doomy psyche-tinged spaghetti western sludge from PA.
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April 2, 2014
GROGGYBlues-obsessed fuzzy garage rock duo from Omsk, Russia.
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March 31, 2014
THE SILENT LOWMelodic, hard-hitting, attitude-driven stoner rock from Denmark.
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March 25, 2014
GRAILPsychedelic punk with a southern demonic desert groove out of Texas.
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March 24, 2014
LORD OF GIANTSincere, lumbering, 70's influenced heavy rock from Germany.
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March 19, 2014
WOVOKA Intense yet melodic, brutal gut-twisting post-metal sludge from LA.
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March 16, 2014
HEAVY VOODOO
Torpedo riffs, hazy grooves and cosmic stoner sleaze from Portland.
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March 13, 2014
SPIRITUAL VOID
Toxic, heavy southern groove metal attitude from Brazil.
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March 11, 2014
SOUTHERN STATE
Somber, shoegazing post-metal sludge from Columbus, Ohio.
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March 10, 2014
HYPERGIANT
Cosmic, gravity-defying stoner fuzziness from Sydney, Australia
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March 6, 2014
KHEMMIS
Fuzz-filled, snail-paced riff-praising doom from Denver, CO.
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March 5, 2014
BITCHCRAFT
Polish doom band with female vocals is a fuzz worshippers dream
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March 4, 2014
DRUG MOTHER
Sleazy, fat and dirty stoner metal riffs from down under.
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March 2, 2014
SPIRAL GURU
Newly formed 70's inspired stoner doom band from Brazil.
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Feb. 27, 2014
TIMESTONE
Expansive psychedelics and dusty grooves from Austria.
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Feb. 25, 2014
RHINO
Fuzzed-out heavy desert grooves from Catania, Italy.
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Feb. 24, 2014
SOLAIRE
Get stuck in some sludgey stoner groove from South Carolina. facebook- bandcamp
Feb. 20, 2014
HADDOCK
Heavy lightning in a bottle stoner boogie groove from Sweden. facebook- bandcamp
Feb. 19, 2014
VALFADER
Stirring progressive ambient doom from Bath, UK
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Feb. 17, 2014
BRUNT
Intense instrumental sludgefuzz from these Guernsey blokes. facebook- bandcamp
Feb. 15, 2014
MATUSHKA
Swirling hypnotic heavy psychedelic rock from St. Petersburg, Russia. facebook- bandcamp
Feb. 10, 2014
MOPE
Sultry and somber jazz-laden ambient doom from Genoa, Italy.
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Feb. 8, 2014
LANDSKAP
Late 60's early 70's influenced heavy psychedelic rock from London.
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Feb. 5, 2014
TOMBSEALER
Death/Doom/Thrash from the mean streets of Adelaide, Australia.
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Feb. 4, 2014
SLUG SALT LAVA
Doomy apocalyptic instrumental Sludge from Istanbul, Turkey.
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Feb. 2, 2014
MIST
Spell-binding all-female occult doom from Ljubljana,Slovenia.
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Feb. 1, 2014
GRIT
Heavy heartfelt psychedelic jams from Heidelberg, Germany.
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Jan. 30, 2014
9OZ OF NOTHING
Riff Heavy Stoner Doom with Southern grit from Athens, Greece
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Jan. 27, 2014
BRILLIANT MACHINE
Chest collapsing progressive heaviness from Ventura, CA
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Jan. 25, 2014
OUTWAILED
Genre-defying atmospheric mood music from Tampere, Finland. facebook- bandcamp
Jan. 23, 2014
YURI GAGARIN
Freaked-out psychedelic space rock from Gothenburg, Sweden. facebook- bandcamp
Jan. 22, 2014
BLACK SNAKE
Swamp-infested grooves and fuzzy desert riffs from Portland,Oregon.
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Jan. 21, 2014
BORDEL INFERNO Gritty heavy rock, solid riffs from Rio de Janiero.
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Jan. 20, 2014
OVERLORD Melodic groove-oriented Heavy Rock from Oxford.
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Jan. 19, 2014
A DAY AS WOLVES Garage-rock inspired bluesy fuzz and roll from Alberta, Canada. Eh! facebook- bandcamp
Jan. 18,2014
NAKED BROWN Hard-hitting Polish heavy rock in the vein of Clutch and Motorhead.
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Jan. 17, 2014
OMEGA SUN
Smoke obsessed Stoner Doom from Slovenia. Free demo.
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Monday, October 31, 2011

HALLOWEEN EDITION: New Band To Burn One To-DEMONIC DEATH JUDGE

Happy Halloween! Today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO" is Demonic Death Judge.



Bio:

Demonic Death Judge are a four-piece Stoner/Sludge metal band from Finland.

Review:

"From the doomy crunch of the fuzzed-out slide guitar to the horrified vocals, Finland's Demonic Death Judge plunge your soul into the depths of hell only to be resurrected and done over and over again. The thick stoner riffs will stick to your decaying corpse as the bombastic drum punch rattles your bones and the harmonized vocals spew from the eye sockets. The music eventually takes an epic turn when psyched out guitar solos swirl into the glorious smoke-filled air. On their latest CD, "The Descent", Demonic Death Judge have issued the ultimate sentence."



Demonic Death Judge: Stick That In Your Pipe And Smoke It




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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Sludge: Undersmile


Timelines notwithstanding, imagine Layne Staley and Donita Sparks locked in a tryst, aiming to give the world Oxford's Undersmile. Slow, dense, and often ominous as a clouded demon, Undersmile deliver sludge/doom in its stickiest, sexiest sense. Envision the weird goth chick in your Biology class actually being as fucked up as her smeared lipstick promised. That's what this boot-clad mud-trudge four-piece sounds like.

Naming your band after a vagina may give the impression Undersmile don't take themselves too seriously. Maybe they don't, but you wouldn't know from checking out their releases, A Sea of Dead Snakes and the evolved "Undertaker" EP. The grime caked on the seven tracks spanning these discs is painful, eerie, and uniquely muliebrous.

2010's A Sea of Dead Snakes opens with the hilariously-titled Instrumenstrual, a deliberate plod through tautology, complete with lantern-crackle drums and desperate guitar roll. Undersmile extend the toil on Cutters Choice, hiring death to push a meat cart and gather bodies. Guitar swings like a depraved pendulum, sharpened and slicing through boney bass crunch. You'll soon find yourself lost at sea, scratching at your own face with rusty nails pulled from wet planks of sludge.

The tepid buzz of Teutonic Dyslexia is ten minutes of near-majesty, balancing pained pipes and curtain-drawn snarls. Throw back your head and march uphill, where fuzzy licks guide chained prisoners to a thunderous, looming lightning storm reminiscent of Type O Negative's Black Sabbath medley. Hel Sterne and Taz Corona-Brown coalesce to form a vocal tandem that fills a void this genre didn't even know existed.

Crab People opens the door to a crunchy, fuzzy meat locker that slowly snaps necks with guitar pull-back and a rhythmic tin barrel toss. Tom McKibbin and Olly Corona-Brown yield a tempo stumbling through a damp, haunted forest. As you're slipping on mossy logs, the measure builds to both a sense of urgency and sense of "fuck you." Find something to grasp, as open-mouthed groans marry distant sirens for a frightening death blow.

Thumbing a sludgy coil, Spore drops a collossal tempo shrouded in a putrid green mist. Vocals are cold on listeners' necks and the stroke lumbers like a drunken yeti. Licks scrape and hurriedly scurry from under the foot of one-eyed giants. The carry-out is a perfect dissolution of filth, slowly reveling in misfortune and darkness.

2011's "Undertaker" EP left the band little time to let things go sour, with instrumentation that's improved and expanded. Splitting their time with Winchester's Caretaker, the back end of these four tracks sees Undersmile growing confident in the reverb-drenched dawdle of Big Wow. Fully-realized vocals, stuttering riffs, and tempo shifts build to burning, grinding sludge of the highest order.

Undersmile's crowning achievement is Anchor, their heaviest and slowest offering. Vocals circle listeners like playground bullies poking at your ribs. Guitars hover as helpless spirits dissolve. Rhythm is held back in a factory churning out smoggy misery. A revved up surrender counters the sea of doom we've floated in for twelve minutes. You're gonna love this.

Undersmile perpetuate a hazy acceptance of the unnatural; a slow bounce through a dark underbelly you've managed to thus far ignore. Let them chew up half your morning and see if you're able to shake it. I suppose Halloween's essentially here, so maybe you can treat this like the best of horror films. Enjoy it, nervously laugh through it, and ultimately hope it won't keep you up tonight. But like any staple of the horror canon, these tracks won't let you rest easy.

...While visions of Undersmile danced in their heads...




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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Album Review: I Decline - "Time To Shine"

Heavy Planet doesn't receive many radio-friendly submissions. And let's be honest; we're cool with that. Whether it's catchy pop hooks, glossy production, or ridiculous and watered-down collaborations, much of radio's menu has no place on Heavy Planet's radar. Chicago's I Decline have arrived to blur the line between the heavy and the accessible.

Time to Shine is I Decline's third release, kicking in doors of autonomy via twelve seditious slivers of despair, hope, resistance, and redemption. Bands normally can't get away with being this ambitious, though I Decline back up every note with meticulous instrumentation, persuasive delivery, and brilliant direction. This isn't that irritating go-getter from your high school's student council. This is a band impulsively busting shackles and rising from complacency.

Inflammatory guitars, paralleled vocals, and shifting rhythms characterize Time to Shine. John Doyle's beats set the tone on the opening title track, bruising his contemporaries with an attack that's unmatched. Dan Dominiak's guitar licks blister and sting, perfectly complementing the gunning tempos. The Administration is an immediate call to arms against tradition and tolerance. Chain-link metal guitars hover just above Pat McLaughlin's thumb-snap bass roll. Breaking, slowing, and growing heavier with each note, the track is well-realized from start to finish.

Wait a minute. I've gotta be careful here. I'm about to use the word "ballad." A New Nation slows down and channels C.O.C., adding hand claps and muddy bass to Clean My Wounds-ish stops and starts. The mood is despondent but hopeful, and the sound is soaring and earnest. Don't let the term "ballad" turn you off. When it's handled this well, there's enough room for everyone. Even the most rugged of thrashers will find himself barking along. And speaking of singing along, Karma is bound to inspire revolt. "Storm clouds have gathered," leaving a man to rue his mistakes. Go ahead and howl along as you drive your Volvo to work.

Where I Decline distance themselves from the sea of metal clones is in their cruising guitar buzz, most evident on tracks like Your Name In Blood and Face of Death. The fuzz is infectious and is gonna linger in your head for the better part of a decade. Grinding, chugging rhythms slug listeners in the gut, though the clean and penetrating vocals lift your chin and look you square in the eye. You're gonna be just fine.

Time to Shine is wounded, weary, but hellbent on hitting back and restoring a calm breeze that's long gone. These guys are marching home with bloody limbs, pushing tainted cars over cliffs, and riding the back of a lone hawk. The band's precision is expertly crafted where many find it audacious. Anthemic and unapologetic, Time to Shine is black-belted, teeth-clenching hope seeking a break in a gray existence. Given the political, economic, and social landscape lately smacking our senses, I Decline may the answer to lighting a candle rather than cursing our darkness.



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Friday, October 28, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: GALVANO

GALVANO is today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO".



Bio:

We're a three-piece from Gothenburg Sweden. We just released our first vinyl release and it's a split 10" with German band Kasan.

Review:
"Galvano has been tinkering around with their sound since around 2005. This band from Gothenburg, Sweden has honed their craft by mixing skull-numbing fuzzed-out stoner doom with the soothing and intriging up and down dynamics of progressive metal. Add to the mix a snarling, gritty and pain felt vocal and you have a nice slice of sludge perfection. The legendary Billy Anderson thought enough of them to mix and master their latest track "The Librarian". Check these guys out today!" ~Reg





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Thursday, October 27, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: They Yearn For What They Fear



They Yearn For What They Fear is a dynamic bass and drum duo. Their recipe calls for a large helping of doom and sludge with a dash of hardcore and a few drops of zombie saliva.


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Brandon Claunch - Bass Guitar / Vocals


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Corey Stringer - Drums / Vocals
Bio: "Around since 2005ish, They Yearn For What They Fear started as a wall-of-noise grind unit, and while they can definitely still tap into all the rage of speed, they've become incredibly dynamic in their sound and tone while never sacrificing heaviness or their own brand of apocalyptic psychedelia. They are hard at work crafting a sonic tome worthy of their name, as well as split releases of all varieties (and hopefully a re-release of their lone testament to their ultra-violent roots, The Art of Communication via Concentric in the near future)."

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Album Review: Zenith Myth




Zenith, the highest point, peak, apex, the summit... Myth, a legend, story, idea, concept...

Mike Edwards also known as Zenith Myth is the sound resonating from a broken heart. This one man ensemble, with a little help from friends, has created a catharsis. Whatever Mr. Edwards has lived, I can feel it deeply attached here on Zenith Myth.

Zenith Myth is a progressive soundscape. The listener finds themselves rising up tremendous mountains and plunging into the deepest waters alongside Edwards. Here you'll find influences that flow between the likes of My Bloody Valentine (emotional), Nine Inch Nails (industrial), Pelican (ambience), and Pink Floyd (cosmic).

The album runs as one giant 47 minute song, with each piece melting seamlessly together. Zenith Myth’s introductory song, of the same name, is colossal. Running around the nine minute mark, the track remains pretty repetitive with a heavy bass-line, becoming emotionally lighter as the song grows, and finishing with the addition of female vocals. This emotional teeter totter atmosphere rolls on until the ethereal ebb and flow of Zenith Myth pauses for “Degeration Blues” to rattle our skulls. This song is more the typical doom laden, fuzzed out riffs we are used to here at Heavy Planet. “Hot Sleeper” follows and it seems we are once again back into the airy ambience that is the structure of this record. The album comes to a close with “When All We Had Were Promises”. Using what sounds like some electronic sound effects and a simple piano piece, we are left with a few moments of silence and a recorded telephone conversation.


Edwards’ debut work is worthy of a serious listen. He mentions that his songs “form their own hybrid” sound and I must agree- I really haven’t heard much like this. I would suggest this to anyone looking for something to really get lost in.

7 out of 10

Musician: Mike Edwards

Guest Appearances:
Paul D'Amour (Tool)
Melissa Auf der Maur (Hole, Smashing Pumpkins)
Mike Bloom (Julian Casablancas)
Sam Golderg (Broken Social Scene)
Meshell Ndegeocello





Tuesday, October 25, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: MELON

Bio:

Melon was founded by David Doyen and Shawn Pratzner in 2003 in Wilmington, Delaware originally operating as the homemade recording project “Throat Wobbler Mangrove and the Post Nasal Drips”, an eclectic mix of esoteric lo-fi goofy weirdness influenced by Frank Zappa and Mike Patton. The project slowly evolved into more psychedelic/punk/stoner rock territory and Melon was born. In 2005, they recruited drummer Ernest Goldner and bassist Chris Haug (Giant Bags of Weed, Take Down Your Art) and eventually started writing songs as a collective unit. Since that time they have recorded three EP's (Drink of the Gods, Mirage, and A World of Monsters) and one full length titled "Never Eat on an Empty Stomach" as well as inclusion on the Delaware stoner rock compilation LP "Delaware Kills Everything" which also included Onita (members of Black Throat), Count Von Count, and Ape. Melon has been described as "a refreshing, exciting blend of stoner rock, psychedelic frequencies, noise and grunge that is all topped off with a weird set of quirks that makes it impossible to truly pigeonhole them into any exact corner." - (hellridemusic.com)



"It's about to get WEIRD in here!" Well, things got weird long before Turn Me On Deadman on Melon's new EP, A World of Monsters. That's not to say it won't rattle your speakers as you scratch your head and smile your ass off. As a fan of Butthole Surfers and Frank Zappa, I can safely say the quirks don't detract from the prolific hook-writing and incendiary bass rollicks Melon provides in these eight tracks.

Where guitars slice songwriting conventions and drums enter wind gusts like fine sand, the bass remains low, loose, and rumbling.
Caterpillars channels D Boon with a punk sneer that's not TOO cocky. Rhythm cooks on Captain (TELL me you didn't just hear Nick Oliveri on QOTSA's Quick and to the Pointless) until Melon finds a brief, melodic, groove-laden breakdown that promises to be the coolest thing you'll hear today. Melon get plenty bluesy on tracks like Your Face Has Driven You to a Life of Villainy and, um... Gary Bluesy. These guys never get ridiculous, though. The songs are wildly enjoyable and well-constructed, knowing just when to pick it up or when to let the ash settle.

Melon have made this EP available through bandcamp at a price you can name yourself. Their third EP and fourth overall release,
A World of Monsters won't fit under the umbrella of any label and it certainly won't help you sit still. If this is experimentation, I can't wait to see what these guys are capable of once they test their sonic hypotheses. This sound is gonna set up camp in your brain and never put out the fire.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: Made In China




Today's New Band To Burn One To, Made In China, originate from Dunedin, New Zealand. Reiterating all we love of early '90s hard rock, sludge, and doom all while adding their own spin. Known for their dynamic performances, you don't want to miss these guys!


Bio:

"Purveyors of fine heavy rock, sludge and a little bit o' good old fashioned doom since 2007... Live and touring fiends, in fact, just generally fiendish. Do not expose to explosives, fumes, or disco balls. May be fatal to the pretentious, shoe-gazing, or musically unmotivated.

Made in China toured NZ in April / May 2009, promoting their "Heavy Low" EP, and again in October, promoting their "Letters to the Dead" Sampler. Previously, the band had toured the South Island twice, (latterly as guests on NZ metal heavyweights Sinate's Final NZ tour), and played a swathe of local shows in 2007 / "08. The band is currently in pre-production for a debut full-length, due mid 2010"

"As anyone who has experienced Made in China's explosive live shows can attest, this is a band worth paying attention to. They've been in the lab brewing something fearsome - an album which captures the signature raw power, technical skill and intensity of their performances.
The Dunedin band’s first full-length release, Vice, showcases their heavy, layered and innovative rock sound. Chunky riffs and stomping rhythms combine with psychedelic elements to take the listener on a sonic tour, which references rock, blues, grunge and doom inspired influences.
The Vice Album Release Tour kicks off on 23 September 2011, and follows Made in China's three previous national tours promoting their E.P. (Heavy Low, 2008) and two samplers. Made In China has previously opened for acts including The Datsuns, Luger Boa, Tainted and Sinate - they will now be supported on the Vice tour by some of New Zealand’s finest underground rock acts."

Sam McKean - Vocals
Morgan Bickely - Lead Guitar
Dan Cox - Rhythm Guitar
Malcolm McMartin - Bass
Mike Holland - Drums





Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sunday Sludge: Seahag

You'd need a Venn diagram to understand the "who's who" in terms of Sludge/Doom in Little Rock. Oh, you're probably all like "Hey, Seth! How many Sundays you gonna spend workin' Little Rock's cock, huh?" Well, given the nucleus of killer sludge bands the city and adjacent communities have lately served up, I may stop writing altogether and move to The Quapaw Quarter.

Seahag is one such band that's aiding Little Rock/Fayetteville in giving metal-mecca Atlanta/Savannah a sharp nip at its heels. Formed in 2004, the band melts southern thickness into a murky, molten scheme that hits the brakes just as much as the gas. Their sound can spend seven minutes speeding up, slowing down, rolling in reverse, or crawling into a warm cave to die. Lumbering through seven swollen, draining minutes is the perfect start to a day you almost didn't wanna face.

500 pressings of Seahag's demo infected audiences in 2007, while the crushing, melodic, often putrid Our Presence Here Is In Vain arrived the following September. The album wastes no time in sending rumbling haymakers straight into your senses, but you'll love how unexpectedly cathartic the sound can be. Sure, Seahag love a drawn-out mud bath with snarling beasts as much as the next guy, but the the band shatters labels and molds when the reverb shrapnel burns your face in slow-motion.

Wasted promulgates both Seahag's ever-shifting tempos and Alan Short's dejected tainted-glass bark, with a grind breakdown that promises this band is gonna do more than just get us dirty. Drawn to Darkness is beautifully slow, nearly sounding like snow falling on Christmas eve... as your best friend hangs himself. Guitars roll and drums flicker like candles until a verminous coup drops. Gradually growing muddier and slower, you won't mind getting your wheels stuck here.

Seahag have assured fans a new EP is in the works and can be expected by early 2012. In the meantime, do your homework and check out what's already available (FREE). You'll find the Neurosis comparisons only go so far, and you'll be surprised to hear a little Soilent Green, Isis, and perhaps a brief dance with Amoebic Dysentery (call me crazy, I hear it). But allow yourself to drift with the moods and you'll also realize Seahag effortlessly craft their own sound, shed the skin of influences, and smear a blank canvas with a sound that burns, crawls, cracks its knuckles, and doesn't worry about whether or not you're okay.

Hurry up with that EP, fellas. We're hungry.



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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Album Review - Olde Growth: Self Titled


Olde Growth…the name itself conjures images of a forgotten landscape…overgrown, all encompassing…taking over. And the sound? Every bit as enveloping as that name implies. On this, their debut album, these two Bostonians, Stephen LoVerme (bass/vocals) and Ryan Berry (drums), overtake you with a steady diet of downtrodden riffs, plodding drum work and vocals so excruciating, they'll leave a pit of regret and longing in your stomach by the time the album is through. Sound like something you'd be interested in? Well read on.

The duo wastes no time getting started as "The Grand Illusion" erupts with a sludgy riff, a steady beat and cacophonous cymbals that'll keep your ears ringing for a week. But its LoVerme's tortured vocals that tie this monstrosity together as he erupts right out of the gates with this gem…"On these bloody battlegrounds, we sail a sinking ship…I've seen the future, and it don't look so grim." But what's cool about Olde Growth is that even though sludge is their calling card, it isn't what defines them. Make your way to the chorus of the song and listen as they shift into a sort of Fu Manchu vibe that seems to defy everything that came before it. The band's transition from sludgy doom to fuzzy groove is completely seamless and adds an insane amount of depth…this is what'll keep you coming back for repeated listenings.

"Life in the Present" opens with a sinister riff that could easily be the soundtrack to a death march….except I'm pretty sure it's an anti-suicide song, so maybe that's not the best description to use here. How do you like "down and out…dry and heaving…loss of hope…anguish being" as an opening salvo? But again, the dynamic of LoVerme's agonizing wails clashing up against his almost pleading clean vocals offer such a striking contrast its mesmerizing. And the song builds to a finale that sees Olde Growth unleash an unholy doom riff that is sure to snap necks.

The centerpiece of the album is the three part opus "Cry of Nazgul/The Second Darkness/To the Black Gate". The overall song is a sort of Tolkien-esque trilogy as it flows from one part to the next telling a tale of wraiths, orcs and legions of doom. "Cry of Nazgul" makes up the first five minutes of the track and features more pummeling riffage and devastating drums. But yet again its the vocals that carry the song's intensity to another level. From LoVerme's banshee shriek to his demonic growl, those vocals bring to life images of the song's subject matter. The next two minutes make up "The Second Darkness", where Olde Growth pick up the pace as they transition into an uptempo stoner rock jam and the last three minutes are "To the Black Gate", which is essentially a steady build up that leads to this epic conclusion…"blackened clouds stretch across the sky…to the black gate, see you on the other side."

But as much as I wanted that three part saga to be my favorite track…it wasn't. No, that honor goes to "Sequoia", an ode to the massive redwoods "of the western shore." The song just drips with passion and respect for nature's power and beauty. Just check out the chorus..."eons pass, empires fall, seasons change, the tree awakes." Here Olde Growth continues to marry the sounds of sludge with fuzz and the vocals continue to mix torment with a casual, mellow cool. But in the end, it's the torment that wins out as the duo delves into the doom laden riff that is the song's backbone and LoVerme blisters his throat on one final bout with that chorus.

In fact, the performance is so unabashedly intense, it's as if he's worn himself out, as it is the last we hear from the vocalist until the album's final act. "Red Dwarf" is the breather that follows…an interesting soundscape of echoed noise and feedback that brings to mind images of the star for which its named. This leads directly into another instrumental track, "Everything Dies", which features the guitar-like fuzz-tones of LoVerme's bass and a driving beat from Berry that sort of moves it through its progressions, steadily building and building until the song reaches a surprisingly subtle conclusion.

This ending is the inconspicuous and simultaneous beginning to the album's final song, which sees the duo incorporating jazzy drums and gentle bass strumming…until the hammer drops and Olde Growth remind you that this is ultimately about one thing and one thing only…the fucking heavy. The dichotomy of gentle build up followed by unrestrained aggression propels the song (…the album…the band) and when the vocalist finally unleashes his denouement…"Awake!!!"…tell me you don't have chills running up and down your spine.

Look…by now, you know whether or not you're gonna dig this shit. Olde Growth's debut LP is about frustration, anger, sorrow and pain broken up by moments of quiet introspection and solitude. It is beautifully aggressive and brutally honest. If that sounds like your kind of thing, then click these links, buy this album and hear what it sounds like when nature channels its screams through two human souls.

Track Listing:

01 The Grand Illusion
02 Life in the Present
03 Cry of the Nazgul/The Second Darkness/To the Black Gate
04 Sequoia
05 Red Dwarf
06 Everything Dies
07 Awake

Band Members:

Stephen LoVerme - Bass, Vocals
Ryan Berry - Drums

Website|Facebook|My Space|Bandcamp|Buy Here

Friday, October 21, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: VULTURES AT ARMS REACH

Bio:

VAAR are a three piece out of Santa Cruz, California. We began in March of 2011, recorded a 25 minute, 3 song EP by the beginning of June 2011, and made it a free download on Bandcamp. Over the last month we've been getting decent exposure in California, but MORE exposure in the UK.

Nate Kotila - Bass / Vocals
Brian Rucker - Drums
Travis Howe - Guitar / Vocals / Noise




You'll be tempted to look over your shoulder for a Mothman or perhaps a swarm of hornets, but Vultures At Arms Reach's +)))((()))((()))((()))- soon enough drops guitar doom as a break to the incessant flaps. Blood's distant gasps and Max Cavalera howls quickly swell your skull and counter the troubling, patient waves of noise. The mood grows ominous and you begin to wonder just what impact this solid three-track EP is gonna have on your frame.

To call Vultures At Arms Reach noise is probably unfair. The sounds are well-executed and the instrumentation is seasoned.
VAAR is pensive, warbling, and ultimately beautifully sad. The track builds on itself and takes a few breaths, proving this band's strength to be their organic approach to the deep and the dark. The whispers and screams are balanced, licks grind and fight against rhythms, and the denouement firmly holds a cadence that's unmatched.

+)))((()))((()))((()))- is 25 haunting and atmospheric minutes that soar, drift, and march to the beat of an otherworldly ocean of sound. Spend some time with this one and see where you're taken. You may find yourself losing track of time, needing less sleep, and fantasizing about a life that doesn't so closely resemble hell. (Oh, and these tracks are free at the bandcamp link below).

bandcamp | Facebook

Thursday, October 20, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: Grandloom




Bio:


Grandloom, formed in early 2007, is a three piece instrumental group from Cottbus, Germany. The sound is a mix of stoner, psychedelic, space, blues rock. Having shared the stage with some of our favorite bands and musicians (Brant Bjork, Graveyard, Karma To Burn, Orange Goblin, and Truckfighters, to name a few) Grandloom is a must listen! Check 'em out:


Tom - Guitar
Hans - Bass
Rischi - Drums



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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Album Review: Dixie Witch - "Let It Roll"

What's it been, guys? Five years? Dixie Witch's 2006 effort, Smoke and Mirrors, managed to firmly cement the band's status as Austin's booze-stained Boogie Rock gods. On 2011's Let It Roll, they demonstrate their continued dedication to the cause. You won't find any 8-minute opus on this disc, and you also won't find original guitarist Clayton Mills. What you're treated to, though, is ten fuzzy shards of jagged licks and rolling rhythms on the band's fourth release.

The opening title track springboards listeners into a sea of killer southern riffs and groove that, amazingly, don't melt away in the span of an all-too-quick 36 minutes. Let It Roll demonstrates cosmic admiration, hog-tied production, and one hell of a good time. This power trio ain't lettin' their amped knowledge of songwriting and instrumentation get in the way of leaving behind a trail of blistered lips and weak knees. Ladies must LOVE this shit.

New guitarist J.T. Smith gets his share of marquee billing on damn-near every southern stone on this disc, and rightly so. Boogie Man begins with a choppy axe/skin reach-around, but audiences are liable to get soaked in dark themes, lifted portside tempos, and a fuzzy breakdown that mimics a cool, buzzed rumble through misty morning debauchery. Follow it up with The High Deal, and you'll see exactly why J.T.'s giving hard-ons to record label execs. A confident crunch, flanked by smoked-out bass and soaring Van Halen pipes, hums until a soulful string ascent sets fire to this ballad and steps back as that old barn burns.

Ah, shit. I shouldn't lead you guys to think CC and Trinidad have thrown on leotards and stuffed their shorts à la David Lee Roth. Hell no. Red Song and Anthem are marching, fist-pumping tales of vengeance and loss. These dudes have had nothing handed to them, and beyond the fuzziness you'll hear three dudes that've been thrown into a few barbed-wire fences. Halfway through these songs, you'll be picking moss out of your hair and dirt from your nails.

Beyond their vocals, CC and Trinidad haven't forgotten how to lay down some thick black carpet. Trinidad's drums motor up sidewalks, knocking over blue-haired old ladies on Saving Grace. Sevens is the album's bounce-heavy gravel road to gambling addiction. Pair the low-end fuzz with some ashy licks and you barely notice your skin's a deep shade of beaten.

And when these assholes wanna pick it up and get scandalous, it seems to come easier than that drunk bitch down the block. Enjoy a quick roll through the hay with Automatic Lady all you want, and be sure and tell your friends. (You're also gonna need to burn those clothes, by the way). December is a perfect, frenetic closing to an album that doesn't let up and doesn't disappoint. Quick tempo parallels a quick mood, along with a guitar highlight that's gonna leave scars up your back.

Dixie Witch certainly haven't gotten clean. Let It Roll is loud exhaust pipes, spilled Lone Star, and a gaze or two at the heavens. But on the other hand, this band's not gonna let a little fuzz hide prodigious song craftsmanship. It's a nice balance. But if I'm ever able to catch these guys live, keeping a sober balance is the last thing I'll worry about.


Small Stone Recordings | Facebook | Myspace

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: DESERT ICONS


With a name like Desert Icons, you’d think these guys (and girl) would play your standard, fuzzed out, stoner rock. But as the old saying goes…don’t judge a book by its cover. Today’s NBTBOT is a six piece from Madrid, Spain that has little in common with the laid back desert rock scene that their name seems to conjure up and much more to do with a bastardized mix of sludge, fuzz and (gasp) metalcore.

Throw the raw brutality of High on Fire, the grooves of Red Fang and the melody of In Flames into a blender, pulse it around a bit and you’ve got yourself a cocktail called Desert Icons. The band achieves their unfettered wall of noise by way of a bludgeoning three guitar attack and vocals that alternate between ferocious low end growls and raspy high pitched wails. Hit play on these five tracks and then sit back and prepare to have your eardrums decimated. This early in the week, this is just the panacea you need to survive until Friday.


Alejandro - Vocals
Ángel - Drums
David - Guitar
Iván - Guitar
Marcos - Bass
Olaia - Guitar




Facebook|My Space|ReverbNation

Monday, October 17, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: CLUBBER LANG



Portland Maine's CLUBBER LANG describe their sound as PAIN. I really don't have to say much else. Check 'em out!



Bio:

"Clubber Lang is based in Portland Maine. Joey Nash (former guitarist for Gridlock) and Sean Slaughter (former lead singer Supersoul Challenger) formed Clubber Lang in spring of '08. They wrote and recorded songs and recruited Stefen Samuels and Jason Marshall(former drummer&bassist Eldemur Krimm)
Clubber Lang's music is pulsating, adrenaline-fueled, dynamic, melodic, hard charging rock featuring soaring vocals and scorching guitar flying over thunderous, technical and groovy drums bass and rhythms. The songs are catchy and full of unexpected twists and turns.
Their live performances are much like their new album, very high energy pandemonium. Like the bands they are influenced by, who seemingly always delivered, they want to be the band that they would want to go see.
Clubber Lang’s debut CD “You Will Never Be Defeated” is musically akin to classic acts like Black Sabbath,Queen and even Motorhead to contemporary groups such as Janes Addiction and NIN mixed with the production sensibilities of Pink Floyd. The creation of this record is very reminiscent of Pink Floyds approach, not so much in the music, but more in the album substance and continuity.
When Clubber Lang started writing You Will Never Be Defeated, they decided that they didn’t want just an album of ten singles. These four freaks of nature wanted to create some of sort of strange trip- an entire experience that is meant to be taken in as a whole. It’s one long God forsaken harrowing ride. The album is seamless, it never rests. The songs are the skeleton and the segues are the flesh that tie the parts all together to bring the body to life, like Frankenstein’s Monster."

Joey Nash - Guitar
Stefen Samuels - Drums
Jason Marshall - Bass
Sean Slaughter - Vocals

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunday Sludge: Black Tusk - "Set The Dial"



How hot and thick does Savannah REALLY get? I've heard stepping outside can feel like having a wet towel thrown on your face, but I can't say I've ever visited the southern metal hotbed that seems to encompass the entire Peach State. On October 25th, swamp-dwelling Black Tusk will release Set The Dial, their fourth album and first since last year's blistering Taste The Sin. Judging by these ten tracks, it's safe to say Black Tusk didn't bother taking any time to cool off.

Keeping things dirty, Set The Dial coats your stereo with blazing sludge and douses it with hardcore punk for an awesomely evil, expertly-constructed groove that never lets up. Brewing the Storm is instrumental static, rolling with a rhythm that James Brown would rip-off if he hadn't died celebrating his own Georgia Christmas five years ago.

James May's drums speed through these 31 minutes like a junkie swallowing his highway stash as a trooper approaches. Bring Me Darkness and This Time is Divine showcase talents which beg the question: "Who's trying to keep up with who, exactly?" A song like Carved In Stone just wouldn't exist without May's double kick-drum, dropping anvils on a stomp-along that makes every other metal drummer sound sophomoric.

Ender of All is, of course, quick, dirty, and seemingly bruised up after a struggle with meth. Vocals battle and a static hum marries a low bass rumble, leaving ashes in your mouth in the form of a brilliant stop/start element. But what listeners will love about this song (and the entire fucking album) is how much GROOVE Black Tusk has managed to lay down. Whew, this train won't be stopped.

When Mass Devotion has you believing the tempo's letting up, you're met with dueling vocals and a guitar lick that wraps you in a straightjacket. Andrew Fidler layers his space-warble riffs and allows us to wallow in the mud and catch our breath, but he doesn't have time to worry about what we can endure. The track's brevity pairs with its spooky undertones to fully deliver what may be the album's most expansive, yet concise, sound.

Set The Dial is heavily characterized by that low-bass bounce, loose and filthy as a prom-night handjob. Jonathan Athon just can't help it; he's gonna roll out bottom-ended grooves and make it look easy. Resistor is nearly stolen by slow southern pickin', but the melodic, asphalt-chewing bass roll keeps things wet and sticky. Hitting the strings with unbelievable intensity, he lays down a furrow on Growing Horns. Choppy, nervous, and a tad hairy, this is exactly what listeners expect from Black Tusk: A slaughter of nervous ticks that gradually manifest themselves in the form of thick, filthy swamp cruising.

Set The Dial signs off with dusty licks, archaic drums, and absolutely no time to scrape the shit from your bootheels. With Crossroads and Thunder, there's a storm coming. Get your shit and take a hike, stranger. We can't be certain what worries us: a drifter on a Harley, hogs feasting, or a swarm of itching locusts. But the sound is awesome, and Black Tusk is confident we won't take it personally when they tell us to get the fuck out.

From fade-in to fade-out, Set The Dial fails to disappoint. The institution of sped-up swamp sludge is alive and well in the Empire State of the South. Black Tusk have again fired up the grill, cracked a few cold ones, and blazed through their own blend of metal that's distinctly southern, distinctly Georgia, and distinctly dark. We're left buzzed, we're left buzzing, and we're left with one of 2011's best albums.





Relapse Records|Facebook|Myspace|John Baizley Artwork

Friday, October 14, 2011

Album Review - Iron Claw: A Different Game



A long time coming... that's the most evident statement I can make about Iron Claw's first record. I don't know much about this band, only that they are a Scottish hard rock band that got started back in the late sixties, did a lot of live shows and not much recording. I might call Iron Claw a forgotten pioneer of hard rock and heavy metal.

The beautiful part of this somewhat tragic story is that through all these years without any previous recordings, we are finally getting (if you will) a fresh taste of what was, before it was keyed "heavy metal". It's like a perfectly preserved fossil, fairly unknown until the crew over at Ripple Music got in touch with Iron Claw. Now, we are all lucky enough to get a taste.

What you can expect from A Different Game is guitar driven, blues infused hard rock with a southern twist. The album opener "What Love Left" is written for driving, you can feel the heat of the asphalt and see the painted lines blur. "Southern Skies" is a fine example of taking that classic hard rock from the UK and adding some Georgia peaches. "See Them Fall" kills with a lightning guitar lick and heavy bass-line. The band also balances the album out well with the addition of a few ballads (Love Is Blind, Closing In).

Now-a-days, Iron Claw will be classified as classic rock with the likes of Deep Purple, Nazareth, and Mountain. Iron Claw brings nothing groundbreaking to the modern metal table, but push rewind... back to a time when it wasn't so easy to get your sound out, and what these Scotsmen have created is in a word: electric. On a side note, isn't that album artwork awesome!?

Rock on 'gents! 7 out of 10

Alex Wilson - Bass
Ian McDougall - Drums & Vocals
Jimmy Ronnie - Guitars
Gordon Brown - Vocals




New Band To Burn One To: WEED PRIEST

Bio:

The Priest was invoked by his 3 acolytes on October 31st of 2008. After six eons of deep slumber He now once again roams the plain of mortals preaching the sermon of doom this world is yet to wake up to.




If you can get past one of the greatest band names you'll ever hear, you'll also discover Weed Priest's proficient approach to what they appropriately describe as "occult stoner doom." Displaying timing that's as slow and patient as it is spooky and groovy, Weed Priest are more likely to lull listeners into blissful, hazy submission than they are to club us over our heads with our own arms. The sound is refreshing, hypnotic, and heavier than a Marshall stack.

Hailing from Galway, Ireland, Weed Priest's three-track demo only provides a glimpse into the promise of what lies under the thick, murky surface. Sure, Final Spell is ten sticky minutes of fuzzed-out grind, complete with hollow castle-chamber vocals and enough hum to rattle the cushions off your loveseat. Thy Kingdom Gone boasts a distant, militant mist that grows buzzier, spookier, and sludgier as minutes tick past. And Sky Daddy is a deliberate grind that makes you almost welcome a creeping death, drenched in Sabbath.

But free up some time and check out everything Weed Priest has to offer. Tracks like Day of Reckoning and Possessed will take you back to your parents' basement and make you wish you'd never cut your hair. This is a band that demands and deserves to be played LOUD. There's no identity crisis here. From the first rumble of the first track, you'll know you need more from Weed Priest. Perhaps you're overdue for confession.

Adam - Guitars, Vocals
Ragas - Bass
Adrian - Drums

Facebook | Reverbnation | Youtube

Thursday, October 13, 2011

New Band To Burn One To - Grand Selmer


Bio:

With one foot in pounding riff groove and the other foot in psychedelic rock, Grand Selmer is a band that will blow your mind and give you chills up your spine. The perfect hybrid between 70s (Black Sabbath, Cream, ZZ Top) and 90s rock (Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age, Fu Manchu).

Tough Day of Relief by Grand Selmer

According to their bio, these four Swedes had some interesting experiences (to say the least) during a six month stint touring Deutschland. Lucky for all of us, Grand Selmer returned to their own homeland, fueled by massive quantities of German currywurst and Weiβbier, and proceeded to document their (mis)adventures the only way they knew how…in their music. The result was their first full length album “Tough Day of Relief” and it is as addictive a display of alternative rock as anything I’ve heard in the genre this year.

The guys are pretty much spot on in their self-description, although I’d say they fall a lot closer in line with the Foos and QOTSA than they do Black Sabbath. You’ll hear it as soon as you fire up the album and hear the dreamy guitars and melodic vocal fury of “In/Out”. And while I definitely hear the Homme-esque guitar work, particularly on the title track, I also hear the brash alterna-fuzz of Silversun Pickups in the music of Grand Selmer (check out “You Never Listen” and see if you agree). As for that sweet 70’s groove…it’s there, but it’s subtle…almost as if it encompasses the band’s care free attitude and their vibe more than it does their sound (listen to the instrumental “Fat Fuck” to see what I mean).

Tracks like “POA”, “Everseen” and “Ass Attack” on the other hand, feature a deliberate mix of punk rock ferocity and alterna-pop catchiness…THIS explains the nod to Foo Fighters in the bio. And “Mark F”, another instrumental, would easily be the most captivating song on the album if it weren’t for the two slower tracks ”Throw the Night Away” and “Berlin”, where the band seems completely comfortable in their own skin. As for the album’s final track, “Brothén”…you gotta hear this one. It takes the band’s ability to stylistically meld the 70’s with the 90’s and throws a balls-out, ass slapping funk jam into the mix…incredible!

When I hear a band like Grand Selmer, I’m blown away that we don’t hear more music like this on American rock radio. Albums like “Tough Day of Relief” are what make me want to scream when I hear people say “there isn’t any good rock music being made these days”...and that's something I unfortunately hear a lot. Listen to me…these guys are streaming this thing for free on their Facebook page and on Soundcloud. I can almost guarantee its better than 95% of the shit you’ve spent money on in the past month. Now do yourself a favor…click on the links and listen to this bad ass rock n roll.


Jonatan Dencker – Vocals, Guitar
Pontus Robertson – Vocals, Drums
Hannes Waernelius – Bass, Vocals
Fredrik Wessberg – Guitar, Vocals



Facebook|My Space|last.fm|Soundcloud

HEAVY PLANET PODCAST


Heavy Planet in association with Grip of Delusion Radio will broadcast a monthly podcast. Eventually the podcast will be weekly, but for right now it will be monthly. This month's podcast features bands from Sweden. Why you ask? Listen to the podcast and find out. Many of you already know why, but for those of you that don't will see why Sweden is such a huge contributor to the Stoner Rock/Doom genre. We want to make our podcasts fun and interactive. We want to extend our blog into our podcasts. You will hear each of the writers of Heavy Planet taking turns being a "DJ". We will also feature some "New Band To Burn One To" bands from the past within each episode. We are always looking for band submissions, song submissions, episode suggestions, etc. Please tune in this Sunday October 16th from 4:00 EST-6:00 EST to listen to the show. Thanks for listening!


Here is this month's playlist:

01. Truckfighters-Desert Cruiser
02. Dozer-Lightyears Ahead
03. Greenleaf-10,000 Years of Revolution
04. Astroqueen-Planet Dust
05. Asteroid-Silver Leaf
06. Blowback-Dead Man's Blues
07. Witchcraft-Dream Catcher
08. Graveyard-Ain't Fit to Live Here
09. Mother of God-Ancient Tracks ("New Band To Burn One To")
10. Abramis Brama-Saeljer Din Sjael
11. Demon Cleaner-Megawheel
12. Spiritual Beggars-Killing Time
13. Roachpowder-Balls of the Sun
14. Awesome Machine-Black Hearted Sun
15. Lowrider-Dust Settlin'
16. Sparzanza-Black Gemini
17. The Mushroom River Band-A Sad Story
18. DoomDogs-Eye For an Eye ("New Band To Burn One To")
19. Kamchatka-Astrobucks
20. New Keepers of the Water Towers-Rise of the Lizard King
21. Candlemass-Spellbreaker
22. Burning Saviours-Spread Your Wings
23. Dead Man-High or Low
24. Stonewall Noise Orchestra-Black Cat Bone
25. Spelljammer-Nine ("New Band To Burn One To")

For all inquiries please contact us @ heavyplanet2001@yahoo.com.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: B-TOON

B-TOON are today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO".



Bio: Formed in 2010 by B-toon - this project is a one-man band placed in a post-apocalyptic world.




"The brainchild behind this epic chunk of atomic southern metal is a one-man force from Poland known simply as B-Toon. The mind-warping apocalypic southern grooves decay your soul as the intoxicating radioactive riffs blister your skin. Eased into the mix are the eerily reminescent Zakk Wylde-like vocals, haunting acoustic guitar passages and a nod to industrial metal. Download the CD for free on their bandcamp page."


Facebook|MySpace|Bandcamp

Monday, October 10, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: TWIN GIANT

TWIN GIANT are today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO".



Bio:

TWiNGiANT: formed in the Spring of 2010 to fulfill the band members' desire to play loud-as-shit droney music. The band is currently getting shows booked , drinking, blowing out their eardrums, and saving up to record an EP.




"Two things are abundantly clear about Phoenix-based band Twin Giant: they are mighty generous and they are loud as fuck! The reason I say mighty generous is that I received a package in the mail the other day from the band with a beer koozie in it. Thanks for that. It will be put to good use. Now on with the music. Like I said before this band is loud. Their gigantic sound is the backdrop to the Tale of the Space Hobo...[The Space Hobo is a drifter – a derelict. Drunk and disheveled. An old Galactic Marine veteran who fought in the 2nd Milky Way rebellion. He sleeps on benches, pushes around hovercarts, buys forties using galactic credits he pan-handles from the repulsed aliens.] Nice!...Caught in a whirlwind of galactic sludge, the vocals monstrously bark as the thick stoner groove snaps at your heels. Plea to the band...more music please."

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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday Sludge: Treehorn - "Hearth"


Let's call this "fango." Is that a stretch? Italians have a way of making everything sound sexier, so perhaps cleaning up the Sunday Sludge won't work if we have to call it Domenica Fanghi. Regardless of where you're from, Treehorn give listeners plenty to love on their stone-solid debut full-length, Hearth. Combining sludge with enough stoner, grunge, and even doom to get the rats in Venice to scamper west to Cuneo, Hearth is as much a tutorial on tempo shifts as it is Guitar Lick Composition 101 at Accademia Di Belle Arti.

Treehorn showcases the talents of guitarist Gianandrea Cravero, bassist and anti-crooner Davide Maccagno, and drummer Davide Olivero. Hearth opens up with a Tad-like low bass rumble, steadily rolling drums, and tiptoeing guitars on Stockholm. There's a spooky stoner groove that sounds pretty sweet on a misty autumn morning. What strikes listeners immediately is the confidence these guys have in their musicianship. Coming as close as one can to resurrecting the legacy of Andrew Wood, Maccagno's vocals ooze machismo over crunchy rhythm and slicing guitars. You'll be surprised at how quickly this album captivates.

Tempos pick up on Taurus, not Bull, utilizing a full-skin drum assault and chop/slap guitar ascent. The stoner fuzz seems to be building toward something, while the John Garcia-inspired pipework is easy to celebrate. The ashy licks, diminishing meters, and buzzy repetition spell-out desert bong-rips. From Taurus, immediately enter the empty corridor of Wakin' Life, where smoky haze tiptoes over leaf-burning vocal distortion. Guitars trip and stay fizzy, drums manage to take their sweet time. The steaminess could serve as a nod to Danzig, though the 90's grunge elements do make the track more accessible.

The blistering Senescence wastes no time in ratcheting up the drums and timing out some pretty erratic fretwork. A hummy grind emerges as the riffs never fall short of incendiary. As the track shifts and reshapes, you're met with the realization that you're gonna need a second listen. There's so much going on in these 7-plus minutes that you could easily miss the drone, the massive breaks, the bass stealing the guitar's marquee, or an airplane's slow-motion descent into splintered timber. This is the best track on Hearth, even without the breakneck return that leaves a village smoldering.

How 'bout a little doom, Scarecrow? Aluminum imports Cathedral-style organs that might make Lee Dorrian wish he'd gone even slower. The distant death-groan is perfect, sounding like a stormy night in an old horror film. Guitars grind, bass sputters and rumbles. The extended belch only serves to make the guitar appear more nervous, while listeners will sense evil at the backs of their necks. Über-creepy, über-awesome.

Sludge remains evident throughout these eight crumbly bits, never more so than on Freeway to the Sun. A grinding rhythm plods, led by loose bass and ultimately coming full-circle to end up face down in a Southern swamp. Vocals are balanced like Anselmo and Staley, while a windy guitar sneaks in and slaps us in our filthy faces. I loved how slow the tempo managed to become here. Black Mirror is pure sludge stomp, though frequent rhythm changes and a bouncy ride home from the bayou balances the uphill stumble.

I've been told Italy's absolutely gorgeous. Treehorn are doing all they can to make sure I don't buy in. But somehow, the moss and grime caked on Hearth's eight concrete slabs is enough to make me wanna visit l'avvio. A trip just isn't in my budget. For now, a trip through Senescence and Aluminum is just dirty enough.

È la gaia pioggerella a far crescer l'erba bella.



Facebook | Soundcloud| Bandcamp | Treehorn Website

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Album Review - Comets Ov Cupid: Western Lands


Before I even get started, it’s worth noting that Comets Ov Cupid is not in fact a band, but more the musical vision of one Jason Kesselring whose other projects include the Minneapolis based space rock outfit Skye Klad and the twisted take on folk that is The Satyrswitch. So with that in mind, its best you curb any notions of your standard guitar/bass/drum compositions and leave your expectations at the door. These are not songs in the traditional sense, but instead nine sonic journeys that will lead you somewhere…nowhere…anywhere…all at once.

Western Lands begins with an instrumental buzz bomb called “Spectres of an Airstream Futuropolis”, a quivering introduction to the beautiful dissonance that is Comets Ov Cupid. The song warbles and shimmers through your cranium with a measured dose of both grace and chaos that leads right into “Starship”. This one hints at traditional rock music with its grinding guitars and thumping drum, but those things are as much a tease as the call of a siren, because ultimately this is still an exhibition in aural bedlam. As the bright guitar tones pierce your eardrums, Kesselring’s vocals, which are buried in a shallow grave of reverb and fuzz, are nearly lost in the maelstrom as he counts us down, “10…9…8…7...,” to some space aged launch into pandemonium.

“Babalon” is a sort of pop-punk explosion with its bratty sing-along of “la…la…la…la…la” underneath a wall of furious noise that sounds like its being played through a blown subwoofer. “Wanderlust” on the other hand is ethereal…contemplative…eerie. Here Kesselring employs a theremin to create waves of electronic noise amidst an introspective guitar, a sound that manages to evoke a sense of sadness…desolation. When the dust settles, this could be the soundtrack to the end. “Ever So Slowly” does nothing to brighten the mood with its subtly strummed guitar and vocals that sound submerged in an ocean of sorrow. On this one, Kesselring mesmerizes with a hypnotic display of guitar loops and effects.

Finally the sun rises on Western Lands with “Jack the Rocketman”, a song that tries awfully hard to be a traditional, up-tempo rocker, but maintains just enough distortion and resonance to salvage Comets Ov Cupid’s lo-fi integrity. “Raven Makes the World” on the other hand is the only song in which Kesselring comes up for air from beneath his sea of noise. It is essentially five minutes of captivating acoustic guitar that brings to mind images of a bleak expanse…a windblown wasteland…nothingness…solitude.

The title track features a wave of feedback and lightning fast guitar that ultimately transitions into the album’s heaviest riff. Here Kesselring plays over the backbone of a driving drum beat and of course layers the entire ensemble under a bed of static and fuzz. And that brings us to Comets Ov Cupid’s finale…“Moonshot”. The song is nothing if not a lullaby, a mellow oeuvre that seems to want to gently cast us out…usher us away…or perhaps even lay us down to sleep after experiencing the cacophony that preceded it.

You can call this project a lot of things. You can call it ambient…you can call it shoegaze…hell, you can call it noise if you want to. The question is…is this noise as art…or is it art as noise? Go on…check it out…judge for yourself…see what the commotion is all about.

Track Listing:

01 Spectres of an Airstream Futuropolis
02 Starship
03 Babalon
04 Wanderlust
05 Ever So Slowly
06 Jack the Rocketman
07 Raven Makes the World
08 Western Lands
09 Moonshot

Band Members:

Jason Kesselring - Guitars, guitar loops, bass, percussion, drum loops, vocals and theremin

Website|Buy Here

Friday, October 7, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: ELKS

ELKS are today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO".




Bio:

ROB HERIAN – GUITAR/VOCALS
SAM ROBERTS – DRUMS
BEN TAT – BASS

Doesn’t it feel good to stick your face in front of a swirling mass of fuzzed-out, down-tuned noise? Freaking out sound men and women with 150db. That’s what it’s all about.

Elks from London are a rarely seen animal, but when they play it’s loud and it’s heavy. We’re talking heavy in the real sense here. With blues. With intensity. With fucking feeling! Like the greats: Pentagram, The Stooges, Necromandus, Captain Beefheart, Peter Green, Electric Wizard...

This September Elks have released an album recorded live at The Hop as part of the Long Division Festival on the 11th June in Wakefield. The album is free to download from bandcamp and it gives a taste of the band’s third album due in 2012.



"With a raw and grandiose attitude, London-based band Elks crawls deep under your skin with their heavy blues sound. Garaged-out , slithering guitar riffs glide along seemlessly as the steady and somewhat droning rhythm wait the arrival of the enormous chord punches. This live album captures the pure, passionate and energetic sound the band sets out to convey. Beware of the unexpected death vocal! Listen now!"

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Thursday, October 6, 2011

New Band To Burn One To: BUZZARD KING

BUZZARD KING are today's "NEW BAND TO BURN ONE TO".



Bio:

Buzzard King are a 5 piece hard rock band from Cambridge, UK. Our music combines hard, stoner rock, with a nod to the classic bands of the 70s.

"Trucking their way through a seventies-influenced southern boogie groove, UK band Buzzard King will have you foot stomping in no time. Spitting out tobacco-flavored riffs, a twangy doomifried swagger and a rebellious attitude, these gold ol' boys are out to raise hell with infectious melodies and hand-clapping anthems. Check em out!"

Go to their links below to check out the tunes.

Facebook|MySpace

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Album Review: Mastodon-"The Hunter"

Mastodon - The Hunter

by Zac Boda


 

Personally, I believe Mastodon needs no introduction.  I began tuning in during the period between Leviathan and Blood Mountain era, captivated by the shear heaviness of the jams and Mr. Hinds fancy fret-work.  And then... and then they released Crack the Skye in 2009.  (The following two words I speak with utter confidence) THIS MASTERPIECE pretty much solidified my status as a dedicated fan knowing that I will follow and enjoy anything these guys throw at me. 

The Hunter is not Crack the Skye.  It is not this wondrous caldron that bubbles and bursts perfectly.  Having said that, The Hunter is impressive in it's own right.  It is aggressive and jagged yet smooth and comforting... It is a welcome addition to what is the Mastodon legacy, combining familiar Mastodonian sounds on tracks like "Black Tongue", "Stargasm", and "Spectrelight" with the not so expected "Creature Lives".

All of The Hunter is a great listen.  Brann's drumming fills and rolls continue to leave me jaw-dropped and the chemistry of these four guys is breath-taking.  It is especially more clear than ever knowing that all four musicians put fourth in this collaborative effort. 

The introductory track, "Black Tongue," begins in typical Mastodon fashion- heavy bass ambience, great percussion, and a killer lick.  The track couldn't be better placed.  For long-time Mastodon fans it's easy to recognize the building blocks of this band and therefore easy to find oneself enjoying the new tunes.  It's also perfect for noob's for it's shear brilliance... and what's not to like when the song ends with "death of the sun".

I really enjoy the track placement, the beginning of this album is chock full of Mr. Hinds genius on the lead guitar and the affinity these musicians have together.  "Curl Of The Burl" is followed by, one of my favorite tracks "Blasteroid".  What a great title.  Again we find Hinds melting our faces while Kelliher, Sanders, and Dailor create a tremendous groove.  The groove is turned into a nightmare when the cleanly sung vocals turn to blood curdling screams.  These are some of the most aggressive vocals I've heard from the band. 

"Stargasm" (another, among many, fantastic song titles) begins with a harmony that could easily have been placed on Crack the Skye.  This cosmic intro creates a faultless build.  I must note, Brann's work here is splendid.  The chorus is instrumentally vivid allowing the cheap lyrics to pass unnoticed. 

The following tracks "The Hunter", "Dry Bone Valley", and " Thickening" change the pace.  Here the sound builds to prepares us listeners for something never expected on a Mastodon album.  That something is "Creature Lives" with its immensely thick electronic whirls, beeps, and zips.  This is a very mellow tune for the likes of Mastodon.  I personally love the simplicity of the song structure, quirky lyrics, and vocalizing background singing.  This is the song that will either greatly disappoint the listener or ignite the listeners contemplation.  That being said, I feel this is brilliant. 

Never fear, if you needed punched in the throat Mastodon follow up the easygoing "Creature Lives" with the thrashing "Spectrelight". The riffage loops around, strangling you while the bass and drums barrage your skull.  "Spectrelight" I haven't the faintest idea how to continue...

The Hunter is another strong addition to an already spectacular discography that Mastodon has given us.  The instrumental orchestration is superb, proving the creativity and artistry of these four gentlemen.  The art work is unusual and unique, completing the package.  I spent the extra dough for the "Deluxe Edition" which offers a couple bonus tracks "The Ruiner" and "Deathbound".  Serious fan should certainly pick these tracks up.    

The Hunter... Mastodon... 9 out of 10.

Troy Sanders - bass guitar, vocals
Brent Hinds - guitar, vocals
Bill Kelliher - guitar, backing vocals
Brann Dailor - drums, vocals

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