Friday, November 30, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: ORTEGA



Ortega is a four-piece sludge/doom collective from the north of The Netherlands. Four men tell a tale of the sea which is told in a broad and visual manner. the sound is best described as dark metal balanced with soundscapes and slow, heavy riffs. Formed in 2007, the band recorded their debut album ‘1634’ in 2009 after a series of gigs, which they eventually released it in January 2010. 1634 was recorded and mixed by JB van der Wal (Herder, Aborted), who is also known for his work as a producer for Dr. Doom, Greyline, Grinding Halt and Suffering Quota. 1634 was released as a concept album and received many great reviews. The CD was distributed online and sold at concerts, packaged in a limited handmade cover. In 2011 they re-released the album on cassette. Aesthetic Death re-released 1634 in 2012 as a deluxe black on black digipack with uv spot varnish, 8-page booklet and renewed artwork. The band went back into the studio in 2011, again with JB van der Wal, to record their follow-up EP, A Flame Never Rises On Its Own, which was released by Badger Records in 2012. In 2012 They went to the studios yet again to record another EP,The Serpent Stirs; their longest output so far, clocking over 18 minutes of psychedelic doom. This release is set for nov/dec 2012 to be released as a limited cassette by Tartarus Records.


"Today's band is merely one you need to hear rather than one to burn one to. This band from the Netherlands brings forth what could be called epic Ocean Doom. The music at one moment sounds like a ship drifting on calm waters then suddenly gets overcome by huge crashing waves caused by a drenching storm and blasts into the ship over and over. Once the devastation commences, the calm waters prevail and you are then guided into the peaceful darkness of the night. The music is carried by cannon-like drumming, a huge wall of sound and throat-shredding vocals. After high acclaim of "A Flame Never Rises On It's Own", the band has just released the 18-plus minute epic "The Serpent Stirs". Go to their Bandcamp page to listen to it now!"

To help others enjoy this awesome band, please leave a comment as to whom you think this band "sounds like" or may be "for fans of". Thanks!


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Discover New Bands on Heavy Planet

It has come to my attention that to make the blog more interactive and informative the need for a "sounds like" or "for fans of" distinction within the post would help readers discover new bands in a more concise manner. Here is the fun part, starting today with the "New Band To Burn One To", instead of one of us determining that distinction, you the reader will choose. Simply leave the name of the band in the comment section. Now when you are navigating through the endless sea of band names in the archives, you will be able to narrow it down to bands similar to one you are a fan of. Feel free to go through the archives and leave a comment on any past post. Unfortunately, that would be the only way to tag past posts and then I could update the archives as necessary. Look for many more exciting things to come your way in 2013. Thanks for being a fan of Heavy Planet!

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Mighty High Needs You!

Mighty High needs your help.

Some of you may know this already but Mighty High's rehearsal room at the South Sound in Brooklyn was devastated by Hurricane Sandy. Basically everything the photo above is gone. Luckily, most of the guitars you see were in a different location but the drums, PA system, amplifiers, speaker cabinets, etc. were submerged in toxic salt water from the Gowanus Canal. Many items were either vintage or custom built and cannot be easily replaced. We are not covered by insurance and not eligible for relief from FEMA. The cost to replace/repair these items is staggering.

We have two shows scheduled in December in Brooklyn to try and raise some funds. Here's the info if you can attend, we'd love to see you. We'll have shirts, vinyl, CD's and posters for sale at both shows.

Saturday December 1 at the Grand Victory 10PM
Friday December 14 at Trash Bar 10PM

If you want to buy a copy of our new album Legalize Tre Bags or any of our previous releases, please visit our label Ripple Music. They have a lot of other great bands (Poobah, Mos Generator, Stone Axe, etc).

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Zac's "Double Dose": Los Disidentes Del Sucio Motel / Tongue

Los Disidentes Del Sucio Motel: Arcane 

The latest track from French Stoners Los Disidentes Del Sucio Motel involves some grinding rhythms, zombies, and a glorious RIFF for the ages! The single is entitled "Z" and is a precursor to what awaits listeners on their upcoming release Arcane. The quintet got rollin' some seven years ago and have since released an EP, a split, a DVD and their debut album "Soundtrack From The Motion Picture". Quite the resume, huh?? The band of brothers have also shared the stage with some killer acts including Karma to Burn, Ufomammut, Red Fang and Valient Thorr. You aren't sold yet?? Well, check out the music video for "Z" below and we will be sure to keep you updated on Arcane's official release date.

Francky "The Ice Screamer" Maverick - Guitar // Vocals 
Bobby "The Big Bear" Maverick - Bass // Vocals 
Johnny "The Devil John" Maverick - Guitar 
Billy "The Mad Guy" Maverick - Drums 
Sonny "The Magic Finger" McCormick - Keyboard // Vocals


Tongue: A Night You'll Never Remember Vol 1: Who Fired The Workers Of Happiness Factory ? 

Tongue is a Serbian one man project... and the man with the tongue is Vladimir Bizic or Ripkid for short. Ripkid's background lies with a hardcore-punk band, Lets Grow. The group has since dissolved [circa 2010], which is a total downer for devout punk enthusiasts. However, the extra time has allowed Mr. Ripkid to focus his creativity in a more stoner and experimental metal direction, which is good for us. A Night You'll Never Remember Volume 1: Who Fired The Workers Of Happiness Factory? is the first installment of what Tongue hope to turn into an EP trilogy.  The music is a calculated balance of psychedelic rock with a whole lot of feedback... kind of creating an eerie Rocky Horror Picture Show vibe... or maybe its just the lips. Either way, the EP is FREE so you know what to do!

Vladimir "Ripkid" Bizic - Guitars // Vocals 
Vojin Klickovic (36 Daggers, Euforia) - Drums // Bass

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: SHININ' SHADE



Shinin' Shade formed in April 2005 from an idea of Allen Kramer and Roger Davis.
In early 2009 a self-titled demo was released for Moonlight Records, then original drummer left the band, being replaced by Mike De Chirico.

With him the band record their first full-length (also self-titled) in 2010, and released it during the same year. The final line-up change came in late 2011, when Jane-Esther Collins joined the band permanently as lead vocalist and so with her the new Ep "Slowmosheen" is released in January 2012.


"With an impressive resume of opening up for such luminaries as Baroness,Pentagram and Electric Wizard, you will soon see why there is such a buzz surrounding this band from Parma, Italy. Combining bone-chilling female vocal prowess to eerie doom riffing and a progressive psychedelic swirl, it will be hard to get this amazing band out of your head."


Monday, November 26, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: SUN PREACHERS



Founded in 2006 in Bordeaux, France, the band plays a kind of mix of the 70's hard rock cult and more obscure bands, from Black Sabbath and Captain Beefheart to Sir Lord Baltimore and Edgar Broughton Band. After the recording of a first unreleased demo, "Beauty of Perversion" in 2009, the band is released a brand new album, "Faces of Ashes" in May 2012.


"First off, I must apologize for not featuring this band much sooner. The music on their latest release "Faces of Ashes" has a very retro feel and attitude. The album contains five stick to your ribs hard rock songs with killer riffs and a sweet hammond organ fulfilling the sound as the harsh vocals reminescent of Lemmy and Phil Lynott demand your attention. Some of the best music ever made came from the seventies and this band has no problem honoring their rock heroes with their own brand of hard and heavy rock n' roll. Check out the tracks "Spahn Ranch Campfire" and the epic hard-psych trip "Nail King". Great stuff!"

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sunday Sludge: Sea Bastard

I don't know about you assholes, but I love my sludge served with a thick plate o' doom. Sometimes there's little to distinguish between the two, so we get those Sundays where we need to open the sludge pigeonhole and shed even more epic darkness. Today we balance the angry with the depressive, the filthy with the haunting, and the steel-toed with the horned. And I'm wasting my time even outlining such distinctions; something this good just needs to be handed to you like a slow slap on the ass.

When Brighton doom giants Jovian and Funeral Hag saw their demises, the foundation for Sea Bastard was laid out as the next logical course. Brewing an unnaturally slow, hauntingly despondent atmosphere centered on the riff and balance by the groove, Sea Bastard's long-buzzing passages are marked by gargantuan stoner-doom explosions. On this self-titled release, the band steals over an hour of your girlfriend's cuddle time with plodding bong-rip rhythms blanketing five tracks, none of which manage to dip below ten minutes. Ambitious? Hardly.

There's a molasses-urgency Sea Bastard exercises on these dusty, drawn-out slabs. Smashed by Sunlight is the thunderous, painfully slow opener loaded with sacrilege and tales of malevolent beasts. Unbelievably heavy and ever-evolving, the shifting tempos demonstrate a commitment to allowing fears to emerge rather than brazenly extracting them. Ian Montgomery's scratching, pained pleas grow into ethereal growls, while thudding thickness permeates your air and challenges the bong smoke. You'd better clear your calendar.

Stomping without relent or regard is Ramesses' Revenge, a quicker, draconian fuzz party. Riff-soaked fret abuse is no match for the medieval groove, lifting further toward a grinding pendulum swing sent to kill. The mood dips straight to hell, just as you expected. The eerie buzz of Psychic Funeral is ominous and unsettling, slowly making its way toward an awesome cadence abrasion. The track is less inviting, more antagonistic, and George Leaver's double kick-drum is an awesome change of pace. Demonstrating not only range but also balls, the band keep the track thick and furry until Oliver Heart's sandy guitar wails and weeps into a slow, sad roll. Ultimately, Psychic Funeral lumbers, staggers, crawls, and collapses under itself.

The title track chops and snaps with true doom traditions, upheld with escalating riffs and misty cymbal taps. This is as primitive and guttural as things get. The fuzzy haze becomes a blanketed envelopment, grinding and consuming with hovering buzz and Steve Patton's bass plucks. The entire meltdown of sound is compelling and demanding, an effective lead-in to Masters of Unreality, the disc's sixteen-minute closing opus. The slow, somber sludge oozes low and filthy, marrying the rainy-day doom in escalating progressions. On an endless sea of grinding and plodding riffs, a broken man buzzes and burns toward his demise. Sticky chaos encircles, gravity and fear become paramount, and the crashing wall of sound whitewashes all that is and was on this stunning denouement.

It won't matter if you examine each track based on its own merits or spin the album as a whole; every note is laced with numbing haze. Sea Bastard borrow from their pasts to challenge listeners and honor their influences, fully immersing themselves in stoner-doom tar. The tracks are long, the riffs are staggering, and there's no patience required. You're not trying to get out or get away. You're trying to make this last even longer. Guess you'll have to hit repeat.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Nuclear Dog's Atomic Split: The Great Khan - "The Great Khan" / Ruby the Hatchet - "Ouroboros"

Bluesy riffs and heavy, psychedelic jams accompanied by smoking hot vocals kick off today's supernova fission explosion from Philadelphia's Ruby the Hatchet, a new band with an experienced sound, a sound that is huge and fuzzy, energetic and heartfelt, unrelenting and joyful. They are incredible and pleasurable and a sheer delight for the most discerning of fans of heavy, bluesy, stoner music. On their heels comes the southern fried sounds of The Great Khan, a solo effort from Gregg Buzzer of Buzzer fame, a band and an artist that have perfected their southern rock sound from the distant shores of Tel Aviv, Israel . . . yes, Israel, something you would never know by exclusively listening to their music alone. The Great Khan has assembled a collection of songs that are sure to satisfy that deep fried, extra sweet, scorching summer sun desire that all fans of the sounds of the south eternally pursue.

RUBY THE HATCHET - "Ouroboros"

Hailing from Philadelphia come Jillian Taylor (vocals), Johnny Scarperia (guitar), Owen Stewart (percussion, vocals), and Mike Parise (bass), comprising the new band Ruby the Hatchet and offering up their first full length album, "Ouroboros", a collection of nine bluesy, psychedelic songs that are heavy and low and jam packed with wonderful, fuzzy, down tuned riffs, catchy melodies, red hot solos, and hooks aplenty, all topped off with ardent, soulful vocals, powerful in delivery, and haunting in spirit. 

The tone is set right away on the opening track, "Taking Sides", where the opening riff leaves a trail of fuzz and delight in its wake and on its fast tempo way toward a catchy, guitar laden foray into a bluesy landscape.

One of my favorite songs on the album is track #3, "Can't Get Him Away". It starts out without too great a sense of urgency, the focal point being Jillian's powerful, forceful vocals as much as anything. Nearly halfway in the urgency kicks in, however, as Owen joins Jillian in a vocal sparring session that combines with guitar work that has suddenly found the boogie and is jamming with intensity and intent. This song is incredibly enjoyable as it hooks and jabs, bobs and weaves, ducks and slides its way through massive riffs, powerful vocals, and a frenetic tempo.

Ruby the Hatchet show off a bit of writing dexterity with both "Holy Father" and "Nowhere", supremely soulful tunes that are haunting and beautiful, both showcasing some beautiful guitar and drum combo work overwrought with muted, ethereal vocals that cut straight through to your inner core with their powerful, fervent sound.

The closer, "Good God Damn" is a rollicking good time, chock full of huge, fuzzy guitars, harmonic, sere vocals, melody of note and delight, a psychedelic trip of wonder and rapture that carries you along on soulful, hooky, sweet riffs of sheer glee.


THE GREAT KHAN - "The Great Khan"

The sound has a southern feel to it, but the origin is the Middle East. Greg Buzzer hails from Tel Aviv, Israel and has been the driving force behind Buzzer since 2004, but this time ventures out on his own, delivering a classic set of stoner rock goodness - 7 wonderfully rendered gems that are chock full of monster riffs and blazing solos topped off with Greg's macho, raspy vocals. This album is aptly named for the great Kha Khan as it resembles an armed campaign that rolls across the land in a thundering, unending roar of sound and vibration, power and portent, destroying all before it, leaving nothing in its wake save quivering masses of demolished victims. There is nothing in history quite like The Great Khan, which in this case is a wonderful thing.

As with all gifted artists and musicians, Greg displays an adept ability for composition, creating songs that upon first listen are hard rock in nature, southern in flavor, but closer inspection reveals songs that are balanced perfectly within the overall melody, allowing hooks and riffs to develop and deliver, and creating room for all instrumental participants to showcase and shape each song with their own exceptional sound.

The opening song, "Eye For an Eye" sets the tone with a blitzkrieg assault that is equal parts raw power and timely execution. The solos are perfectly placed and beautifully rendered while the riffs are mouthwateringly spaced throughout, complementary when solos are blazing or when vocals are on point, or leading when hooks are instead established.

"Papa Was an Alligator" is obvious in its intent to deliver southern fun where life is unique and often provides one of a kind experiences, just as does this song commemorating a slice of southern life, unique in flavor, full and rich in experience, and incredibly gifted in ability.

"No. 4" has a wonderful tempo, clipping along at a near perfect pace, somehow tapping into the tribal rhythm deeply embedded into our dna, stirring the ghosts of indigenous dances centuries cold, but somehow now brought to life, blazing and hot in all its perfection and sheer pleasure. If radios played rock songs in their agendas, this one, in my opinion, would make for one of the more anticipated tracks in daily rotation.

"Lay Me Down" delivers a slowed down tempo, which allows for the power of guitar and vocals to kick up a notch. The song is powerful and unyielding in delivery, forcefully moving forward in near perfect tempo.

"Dia De Los Muertos" has a bull fighting flavor to it with herald trumpets interspersed throughout, accentuating the tale of woe and loss that The Great Khan relates in its typical methodical and powerful unfolding of riff and solo. The solos in this song are also accentuated with trumpetwork that is at once unique and well suited.

Overall, this is a powerful and pleasurable journey of unique, artistic, and enjoyable metal music showcasing an exceptional delivery of instrumentation and vocal stylings that present the listener with a radical, memorable, metal experience.

((( facebook || bandcamp )))

Friday, November 23, 2012

Heavy Planet Merchandise On Sale Now!

Have you been holding off on buying a Heavy Planet T-shirt? Well, there is no better time than now to get one. Not only that, but we will throw in a Free sticker as well. The popular Cosmic Girl design is now only $12.99 and the Heavy Planet logo design is only $7.99. What are you waiting for? We ship to any destination around the world. All proceeds of the sale will go right back into making Heavy Planet bigger and better than what it is now. So support great music and support Heavy Planet! Thanks!

*Prices good until 12/31/2012
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New Band To Burn One To: EARLY MAMMAL



Early Mammal started on February 1st 2012 in an old butter factory in Camberwell, South London, called Dropout (London's true home of sludge and noise). Formed by Rob Herian (ex-Elks) on guitar and vocals, Ben Davies (ex-85 Bears) on drums, and with the prog-stylings of Turkish born Deniz Belendir on organ and synths, the band spent hours jamming heavy blues, space-rock and psyche with the likes of Captain Beefheart, High Rise, White Hills and Hawkwind on the brain, and in September 2012 finally finished recording their first album, Horror at Pleasure, which is looking for a 2013 release.

It's head-down-rock; it's fuzzed-out and heavy.  But there's also something wrong in the story.  That's what the last few months have created in Early Mammal and that's what you get.  That's what we all get because there's something not right about any of us, anywhere.  All our stories are fucked.  Early Mammal is coming from somewhere else.  It's expected and it's telling you something.

Demon or Saint? from Early Mammal on Vimeo.


"If the rest of the album is anything like their first single "Demon or Saint", then we may have the first addition to many top 10 lists of 2013. The mood is dark, the feel is spacey and the riff is ridiculous. The bluesy and impassioned vocal style and heavy-fuzz play off each other very well. I'm eager to hear the rest of what this band has to offer. Stay tuned!"

Horror at Pleasure - Album Coming Soon. from Early Mammal on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Mos Generator - Nomads

The slow burn of catalystic doom-drenched tapestries lies within their cheese, as well as their relation to traditional rock cannon. Mos Generator is a perfect example of sensibilities decades past and modern crunchy hard rock.

1. "Cosmic Ark"- A mid-tempo journey to the supposed mystical cosmic ark. This piece evokes The Sword and aspects of contemporaries Grand Magus. A course in vintage psych rock 101.

2."Lonely One Kenobi" - A swamp-draggin southern riff fiesta. Nasty syncopated sounds straight out of Skynyrd's riff vault.

3."Torches"- A mid tempo rocker. The vocals leave some room to be desired as far as unique texture however the guitars are exceptional on this track- the final jam resulting on a REALLY nasty pulsing guitar jam.

4."Step Up"- Another track that alludes to nasty southern feel of the record. A gritty funky groove tune.

5."Solar Angels"- Basically a hair-rock tribute. Hits with a decent melody and a "ratt-on-steriods" kind of direction.

6."For Your Blood"- Reminiscent of recent Iron Maiden and a little bit of Pantera, a galloping curmudgeoning behemoth of a tune. The guitar solos on this track being particularly of interest.

7."Can't Get Where I Belong"- A pulverizing rock track that makes one think of melodic rock masters of old, but has the tone of Cream, or The Who in vocal harmonic quality.

8."Nomads"- The acoustic mellow rock song of the record. Dreamy minor quality with shimmering guitars- kind of filler.

9."This is The gift of Nature"- Pentagram is running through this band's veins. Classic doom riffs a-la-Trouble with low down homegrown riffage.

Mos Generator speaks from the mouthpiece of 90s stoner/psych-rock. The album is solid but suffers a bit from cliches and could use a little more oomph to push it through the cut and dry of regular psych records.
For fans of The Sword, Thin Lizzy, and The Showdown.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Zac's "Double Dose": Camel Of Doom / Grass

Camel Of Doom: Psychodramas: Breaking the Knots of Twisted Synapse 

Huddersfield, UK (so very close to the rock hub of Leeds, UK) is home to a brilliant one man machine known as Camel Of Doom. Mr. Kris Clayton is the talented young lad at the helm of this Camel. He began this journey some ten years and six albums ago. After pulling together a band to play gigs, dissolving, line-up changes, playing for another band you may very well know (Esoteric) and re-materializing Kris decided to go it alone for Camel Of Doom's seventh and soon to be released album Psychodramas: Breaking the Knots of Twisted Synapse. Here listeners will find a variety of influences from death metal to 70's era progressive rock, but Camel Of Doom always stay firmly rooted in doom. Throughout the album Kris uses a plethora of vocal styles ranging from hardy shouted lyrics to darkened growls, while the dynamic guitars cover a vast range of genres. The release is made up of eight tracks running sixty minutes. Forty of those sixty minutes come from only three leviathan songs; The Anger of Anguish, From the Sixth Tower, and Machine of Annihilation. The remaining five songs act as connectors between these mountains. This is truly a monstrous feat considering there was only one individual manning all stations. Therefore I feel confident in describing him as brilliant. Get over to bandcamp to take The Anger of Anguish for a spin and mark your calendars because the entire album will be available for purchase December 3rd on Amazon, bandcamp, iTunes, and Spotify!


Kris Clayton


Grass: Grass Demo 2012 

Recently, I've had a hard time listening to any extra curricular stoner rock, focusing my time on other genres. There's a time when it seems stoner rock is hopeless and nothing fresh can possibly put you in the mood for the likes of a Kyuss inspired head-banging fit. Suddenly a group of Spaniards come knockin' with a new bag of Grass restoring my faith in the style and enslaving my head and neck to their version of the almighty and eternal RIFF! Lets just get this out of the way, nothing new or ground-breaking is happening here only thought-out and herbally-calculated stoner rock. The release is labeled a demo but in no way sounds like a demo. The RIFFS are what is expected from a stoner rock group, yet original enough to snap me out of my stoner rock funk. Grass display a cohesion which sounds as though each strum, beat, and sound attract to and support Dani and Ofer's gratuitous RIFFS. Grass's Demo 2012 reminds me why I've enjoyed this style of music for such a long time. Check out my favorite track Sank in the Mud below and then head over to bandcamp, because this demo is FREE and its hard to argue with that price tag!


Alan - Drums 
Artur - Bass 
Asaf - Vocals 
Dani - Guitar 
Ofer - Guitar

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: THUNDERBEAR


Band Bio:

Thunderbear is a 3 piece sludge/doom metal band based out of Wilmington, MA. We are heavily influenced by bands such as Black Sabbath, Motörhead, Sleep, Kyuss, High on Fire, Torche, and really any band from the stoner/sludge/doom genre. We formed in 2009 under various different names, and actually started as a classic rock cover band, which changed once we discovered Sleep and decided to start to write songs in C tuning and make them slow and heavy. We have been jamming with heavy riffs and exploring the endless possibilities within the genre. We began listening to bands like High on Fire and the sludge/doom metal scene and began to explore those realms as well. 

Thunderbear consist of:

John Grealish - Bass, Vocals
Peter Ammon - Guitar
Aristide Palm - Drums


I love Thunderbear's BIO. They began as a cover band of classic rock standards until they stumbled across the shadowy underground world of sludge/doom/stoner music. Okay, I've embellished it a bit, but this tells a story familiar to many who frequent our awesome site, or who are purveyors of this wonderful music. We all love rock, and we love it on the heavy side, and once stoner/doom/sludge music is discovered we are hooked for eternity. Thunderbear made the change from covering music to making music, such was their inspiration. And make it they do, very well. They have stayed with one cover on this EP, the assumption being it is their favorite, their most inspiring song, Sleep's "Dragonaut", but the original tunes on this EP are very well constructed and equally as well executed, adept and forceful in delivery. Grealish's vocals are magnificently suited to this style of music. Ammon's guitar, both in solo and in riff refrain are tribal and severe. Palm's drums and Grealish's bass are huge, frenetic, and thoroughly enjoyable. There are hooks, there is melody, there is heart, and there is a fresh, honest, worthy addition to the type of music lovers of Sleep, Black Sabbath . . . Hell, all of Stonerville, Doomasschusetts crave.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Heavy Planet Reveals Artwork For First Ever Compilation

In anticipation of the first ever compilation "Bong Hits From the Astral Basement" from Heavy Planet, we reveal the brilliant album cover artwork. Designed by Helena Harlan, the graphic is sure to stun and mesmerize as you are catapulted into a new realm featuring sixty-one of the finest independent and unsigned Stoner Rock, Doom, Psychedelic and Sludge metal bands from around the world. The compilation will be available starting 01/01/2013 as a FREE download. Mark your calendars. 

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Sunday Sludge: MAKE - "Axis"

Sometimes the terms "LP" and "EP" are misleading, primarily because they're so heavily misused. The UK's Official Charts Company actually has rules on the terms, but most listeners (and likely many bands) don't give a shit what you call it so long as it's worth the money. Whether serving as a preview of what comes next or an extension of what you've already enjoyed (or dismissed), EP's have grown far beyond the punk/indie/DIY purists' elitism and now litter the catalogs of every genre.

Earlier this year, Heavy Planet featured Chapel Hill's MAKE with their full-length Trephine, an atmospheric sludge stunner that immediately cemented itself on more than a few best-of leanings. It didn't take long for the band to quickly begin work on a follow-up LP, but guitarist Scott Endres felt an EP was a natural layover:

"It's not necessarily meant to be a cohesive statement but rather ideas we had which didn't necessarily fit in with the material we've been preparing for the next LP. I suppose we could have added a few more minutes to this and called it a short LP but this isn't the statement we're looking to make in following Trephine."

The explanation alone entitles MAKE to call Axis whatever they'd like. Thirty-plus minutes spread over (or delicately spanning) three tracks had better deliver, regardless of classification. Having no clear glimpse of what a future full-length could truly hold, we can look back and see Axis as neither a departure nor a shift to neutral, though MAKE's signature is clear. Using solitude and isolation to somehow, amazingly, craft comfort and warmth in a sea of drone progressions and sludge kicks, MAKE compose Axis as a statement independent of anything they've previously accomplished.

The seventeen-minute opening title track is ominous without alarms, slow and patient without being a drag. Endres' evolution from guitar drone to gentle screeches accompanies Spencer Lee's buoyant thumbings, cutting and pasting with calculated precision. Without the use of vocals, the tiered delivery remains grounded enough to spin a sonic story, gorgeously littering a barren tundra with somber plucks. Axis is haunting, all-encompassing, and wholly welcoming, despite its jagged claims to the contrary. With a little help from some awesome grinding riffs, the track steadily evolves, rhythmically rising and buzzing with a disregard for every surrounding attack. The whitewash funnel of ultimate acceptance and undeniable gravity returns the drone, but there's enough going on here to plunk any listener for a second helping.

The more immediate Chimera revs and rolls by comparison. Lee's vocals are as percussive as they are narrative, with pleas morphing toward growls. Rhythmic underlayment burns and chugs with repetitive schlepp while drummer Matt Stevenson encircles every sailing lick and bass thread. The chaotic swirls of guitar clutch tempos and carry out this spinning beast, leading directly into The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters.

The awesome drone re-emerges as footstep drum-taps fade in. Tagged with shrouded, hazy atmospherics, Sleep operates on the ideal that restraint, when delivered so delicately, commands attention. We know this about MAKE, but on this progressive drift into nothing and everything, it becomes more clear than ever that the soft rain of elemental marriages is no less riveting than the band's crushing devastation. They don't need to provide balance, but it's worth noting that MAKE's comprehensive sound demonstrates unmatched depth and range. Hell, they even throw in piano, effectively closing this "EP" on a wing of cracked hope.

If Trephine was Point A and Point B remains just ahead, stopping for the night with Axis as the perfect roadside attraction is a worth every moment. As expansive and complex as these songs can be, MAKE remain committed to their audience by alienating them. They're never gonna insult your intelligence, they're gonna let you figure out things on your own. That alienation develops into self-realization, acceptance, and embrace. We can't wait to hear that forthcoming LP, but in the meantime, Axis stands on its own as a triumph in cold-crafted comfort. Sounds strange, doesn't it?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Nuclear Dog's Atomic Split: Great Western - "Warrior of Light" / Stone Roots - "Don't Turn Me In"

Disparity, variety, and miscellany are the name of the game again today, ladies and gentlemen. ( I wonder how many ladies do read our posts. I hope it's lots. ). We offer up two bands, two albums, two sounds that both fill up their respective, but opposite ends of the golden basket of Heavy Planet music. Stone Roots offer up music that could almost be classified as Americana with some Country influence, except they must have found their instruments at a Five Horse Johnson yard sale because the riffs are huge, heavy, and chock full of delightfully distorted fuzz. Great Western, on the other hand, having surely procured their own instruments from whatever sources rock bands procure them from, are a hard hitting, punch in the mouth, sludgy, grungy meat pie of a hard rock band, providing straight up rock that is juicy and lip smacking flavorful. These bands may not sound much alike, but they bring their guitars and their heart and use them along with immense talent to produce insanely good music.

GREAT WESTERN - "Warrior of Light"

Great Western, of South London, are a trio that tend to demonstrate the very best parts of rock in their music without using any part or parcel of gimmicks- no samples, no dubs, no spacy, unnecessary intros. These guys come to the fight armed to the teeth with lethal weapons and nothing more, weapons they've honed to killing blow sharpness, weapons they waste no time in wielding as they slice and cut their way through the "Warrior of Light" EP with efficiency and zeal.

Great Western are comprised of these three young gentlemen:

Frederick Fuller - baritone guitar, backing vocals
Rufus Miller - lead vocals, lead guitar
Ralph Fuller - drums, backing vocals

Great Western are making their way in an arena that, while not necessarily crowded, certainly has plenty of competition, which, if "Warrior of Light" is any indication, has only honed their ability to create and express important and interesting music to a rarefied level. They don't fit neatly into any one genre, generously moving in and out of several on song or album. They employ the main hallmark of stoner/doom music with low tuned guitars, in fact they employ a baritone guitar as one of their standard instruments, while not shying away from the occasional guttural sludge vocalization. A hallmark of this talented trio is their ability to create memorable melodies that provide intriguing, interesting, impressive lyrics, hooks, riffs, and refrains on every musical iteration.

"Warrior of Light" kicks off with "Son of a Gun". It wastes no time, jumping right in with huge, heavy, up tempo, down tuned guitar riffs that drive the song relentlessly forward, accompanied by primal scream vocals, bunker busting drumwork, and napalm drenching solos that cling and burn til all has been scorched beyond recognition.

The tempo is quick and primal on "New Government", allowing ample time for familiarization before moving into the blitzkrieg guitar onslaught that relents only when all before it has been pulverized and leveled.

"Grand Parade" is grand indeed, huge in scope, haunting in delivery. It burrows it's way to the very center of your heart and psyche, preying on your primal timbre with instruments of cold steel and blue fire, eliciting emotions pure and visceral in reaction. This is music in high virtuosity, searing its imprint for eternity.

The album closes with another haunting masterpiece, "Be at One",  that broods dark and drear, slowly flowing through a distorted landscape wrought beautiful and severe by the sheer weight of booming instruments and canyon echo vocals. It's an onslaught of allure and gloom, deftly delivered by wizards of their own magic.

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STONE ROOTS - "Don't Turn Me In"

There is not much information available on this band out there in the etherworld. Not yet anyway. They hail from the heart of country rock, San Francisco, California. The lineup for this talented group of rockers is:

E. Semak on guitars and vocals
Rob Becker on bass
Lexington Vermouth on drums

The music has a heavy country / americana slant, as previously mentioned, but is also very clean in its production, without superfluous additions or overproduced instrumentation, creating space that becomes intriguing and essential to the songs, especially when combined with perhaps the greatest quality of these west coast rockers, their song writing skills. The songs on this album are well constructed, full of melody and hooks that will engage and energize as only quality songs can. The guitar work on these melodies is what lands this music squarely in the middle of worthy stoner rock, as they provide the two main essentials of guitar delivery - refrain riffs that are low and fuzzy, huge and heavy, combined with solo segments that lay waste to the landscape from the concentrated heat of laserbeam rampages. Add to it the perfectly matched vocals of guitarist Semak and you have a sound that, while not necessarily rare, certainly rises to the top of the immense heap of good and great stoner rock.

The opening track, "Horns", is a prime example of every one of Stone Tools' qualities, combining deft melody with riffs of vision and hooks of delight, wrapped in bullseye rock vocals. Low and fuzzy, loud and raunchy, it's a perfect kick off to a fantastic collection of tunes.

Track four, "Don't Turn Me In", the title track, picks up the pace, as rock bands are always wont to do on at least one song of albums of a more deliberate gait. The song clips along at a great pace and tempo easily sliding into a scorching solo that itself slides into a large, deliberate, and beautifully rendered finale.

The closing track, "Twenty Nine", as is also often the case on albums, is perhaps the biggest, most ambitious song on "Don't Turn Me In", and after listening to it a time or two should quite rightly stake claim as the album's best track. It has the beautifully rendered big guitars, heart piercing vocals, hooks that soar, and solos that carve a finely tuned crease through the middle of it all.

I've failed to pay tribute to the work of the bass and drums. Too often the work, the product, of the rhythm section is overlooked. The sheer genius of simplicity for what they provide makes it hard, too, to say what is so incredibly obvious without overstating it over and again. But the basswork and drumlicks on this album are superb, exquisitely rendered by gifted musicians that deftly provide exactly the right weight and time to a solid base and primal center.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: BONEWORM



Boneworm is Tim Burke. Tim plays guitar and shoulders the burden of knowing exactly how you are going to die.

Boneworm is Dave Becker. Dave plays bass and, like a lich or a Roman emperor, only seems to be growing more powerful with age.

Boneworm is Chaz Rocker. Chaz plays drums and hangs out with your Camaro-driving uncle. 

Ask about the weekend they drove to Reno.


Sorry that I am being lazy on this one, but I really couldn't say it any better than the band already has. This is great stuff! Very Melvins-ish with slow plodding rhythms and heaviness that buries your soul. Read the following then download the goods, it's a name your price download. If you like what you hear, afford the band with your generosity.

(From the band) 

"The themes on Boneworm's self-titled debut are brutish and desolate. Songs of love have their place in timid ballads and frivolous pop ephemera. But concepts like failure and crushing doubt are burdensome beasts that are best caged and conveyed in music that is unafraid to handle them. This has always been the dire necessity of metal music. Boneworm tells these tales by calling upon rasped howls, punishing bass, and the occasional guitar solo that delicately pulls us aside and promises that nothing will ever be ok again.

For a genre that is frequently looking outward into the psychedelic aether, Boneworm offers their doom with a sense of crushing immediacy. Which is the more terrifying, the intricate words of a sinister hex being cast, or plaintively being told that nothing matters because time is already
against you?

To be fair, imagery of bubbling cauldrons and mystic dimensions is overkill when you're already writing your music against the backdrop of Portland, Orygun. A discerning ear will detect the homages and influences, but Boneworm's sound is brewed and bottled in a northwest style. This is the soundtrack to rain-slick blacktop glowing under sodium lamps. This is the thump and rattle of freight trains and rattling windows in the industrial district. This is the distinct sound of Cascadian doom."

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Radar Men from the Moon - Echo Forever

Howls that reconcile themselves in obsidian corridors, the fretting dragged out death that lurks in the domain of clasps made for iron breathed-beasts. Or rather the concentration of one's consciousness in the unconscious creates echoes that rattle in-between. The creatures that dwell in the reverbations are consciousness fluxuations- That strange pseudo-psychedelic set of sentences is the only verbal way I can enunciate the groove driven echo-washed splendor that is Radar Men from the Moon.

1. "Echo Forever"-  A staunch modulation drenched piece which climaxes in an intense clashing of distortion and freakdom.

2."Atomic Mother"- This piece is marked by a pounding mid-tempo psychedelic rock beat and evokes the sound of She Loves Pablo and Kyuss, a notably desert vibe is felt. Shimmering chorused out guitars dote final build-ups and punctuate the dynamics.

3."Dance of Black and White paint"- Ominous delayed guitar that evokes Vini Reilly and early Pink Floyd manifesting itself in to layers upon layers of chorus and vibrato. It spins itself into a tripped out death-march!

4."Darkness"- Where the drummer really shines. It starts with a faced paced drumbeat and quiet echoing guitars. The dynamics are captured wonderfully as you really feel the push when the guitar drops into a fuzzed out wall of power. It lulls itself back and forth between swirling grooves and distortion-soaked power leads. The last riff lends it to the Sabbathian fervor of yesteryear as it caps a gargantuan sonic landscape.

5."Heading for the Void"- A repeating tritonal drone, switching  itself on ends of grooving modulation clean parts and violent distortion. It finds itself enveloped in a fuzzy climactic battleground of riffage.

6."Where the Earth meets the Sky"- Birthed in phaser sounds and lending itself to a freakish shuffle interpretation, it eventually winds up in a driving lift-off rock beat that evokes the sounds espoused by Hawkwind.

7."Avant-Garde Luxury"- A mish mosh of obscure strange noises flipping themselves into an unabashed heavy dose of prog-rock excess punctuated by post-rock minimalism. 11 minutes of ambient groove mastery.

Remember kids, when going to the moon always pack a light bong and watch the gravity. Give the Radar men from the moon a spin today.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Zac's "Double Dose": Monobrow / Vulture Kult

Monobrow: Bennington Triangle Blues 

Today's Double Dose is brought to you by our Canadian friends from the north and the letter H, for HEAVY! That's right an all Canadian, all day long dose-age of double the heaviness! First up we have Monobrow an instru-metal trifecta well versed in Iommi-ism. Where the majority of instrumental bands fail Monobrow excel. Using a Mariana Trench like depth for the lows and straight groovy arrangements Monobrow do much more than simply hold a listeners attention. Be sure to spin my favorite track Mordrake's Revenge below, from their excellent sophomore release Bennington Triangle Blues. If you dig it, and I know you do, get over to bandcamp and be sure to check out the available vinyl releases and killer merch!

Brian Ahopelto - Drums 
Paul Slater - Guitar 
Sam Beydoun - Bass


Vulture Kult: Dont' Let Rock N' Roll Ruin Your Life 

So two dudes up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan grabbed me by the collar, kicked me in the balls proudly proclaiming, "We remember rock n' roll!"  Well, not literally, but that is definitely the vibe emitting from Vulture Kult. This dynamic duo released their second full length album, entitled Don't Let Rock N' Roll Ruin Your Life, this past summer. The music is bold, fast-paced, and full of energy mirroring the intoxicating nature of each guitar lick. Pushing play begins a twenty-five minute onslaught of righteous rock n' roll glory and gritty attitude. The album checks out with a reprise of atmosphere-laden melancholy freeing listeners from an addiction only Electric Medication can ease. The jams are streaming over at bandcamp and can be purchased at the Vulture Kult store.  What are you waiting for!?

Hans Bielefeld - Vocals // Guitar 
Bradley Friesen - Drums // Vocals

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: SUPERVOID



We're a five piece (guitar x2, bass, drums and vox) of dudes who just wanted to get together and have fun making some heavy music, heavily influenced by bands like Thin Lizzy, Kyuss, Fu Manchu and Weedeater. We don't confine ourselves to any certain wheelhouse, and have songs that range from 10 minute space jams to slow sludge-filled blues driven walls of noise. We only just started gigging a couple of months ago, but are picking up steam and have been embraced by our local Pittsburgh scene. We have played with The Atlas Moth, and have an unannounced minitour in the works with a few bands that you may know.


"I must be honest, every time I receive a band submission from a band from Pittsburgh, PA I get overwhelmed with excitement. Why you ask? Because the Stoner/Sludge scene in this town is rather nonexistent. I can literally count the number of bands on one hand. It could also be because I don't get out much anymore these days. Anyways, here is another amazing new band to add to that list. Supervoid ,simply put, is incredible! This band goes from atmospheric space rock to ear damaging raging sludge in a heartbeat. The vocals range from a nice clean mix to a hollow bellowing howl, both of which I like equally as much. The impact of these two songs is enormous. Both songs are almost like having a few songs mixed into one, but without sacrificing song structure. The groove, intensity and influences shine through on this brilliant EP. Hopefully, I will get to check these guys out in the near future. Until then, this EP will have to suffice."

Check out some footage of the band in the studio

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Monday, November 12, 2012

New Band To Burn One To: HARVESTER



Harvester are a stoner metal band from Galway in the west of Ireland. We recently released a 6 track EP "The Blind Summit Recordings". Harvester consist of former and current members of Rites Them Martyrs and Gummidge The band was formed through a mutual love of Black Sabbath and Guinness. The EP was recorded in September 2012 at The Hive Studios a year after the band formed in 2011. We draw influence from the greats, Thin Lizzy, Black Sabbath, Sleep, Rory Gallagher, and newer bands Graveyard, Torche, High On Fire etc.

Band members:

Bryan Higgins- Guitar
Gavin Grealy- Guitar, Vocals
Steve Loughney - Bass
Kenn Sweeney - Drums


"My favorite part about this "job" is getting to hear new music every day, some good and some well, shall I say not as good. Then comes along a band that just totally kills. On their latest EP "The Blind Summit Recordings, Galway-based Stoner Metal band Harvester lay praise to their classic rock heroes Thin Lizzy as well as the steamrolling stoner metal punch of let's say High on Fire. Layer in a "fuck you" attitude and you have the makings of one hell of an EP. The instrumental interludes are insane, from the punishing fury of opener "Cosmonautical Mile" to the twin guitar riffing on "Circle Eater" and "Old Blood" it is clearly evident that these dudes know how to rock. Download this EP for free now on Bandcamp, grab a pint and crank this shit to eleven!"

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