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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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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Album Review: Lightsystem - Lost Language


Progressive Rock has become a very confusing genre of music these days. The idea of being “progressive”, is to be ambitious, experimental, usually composed by the musicians of the musically elite. Lightsystem fits that description. This is ultra modern, heavy prog rock. The influences of bands of the 1970’s such as King Crimson or Rush are there, but this is further down the road in the evolution of the genre. The songs go in extended movements, like classical pieces. The guitars are angelic and airy while the rhythm section plays through a plethora of odd time signatures and patterns. The instrumental jams are as interesting as the songs themselves, of which there are a lot of. The vibe of the album is like a musical score to fit a science fiction road movie. It’s apocalyptic, chaotic at times, but always composed. 

Lightsystem hails from Los Angeles, California. I haven’t heard a band this impressive from L.A. in a long time. Actually, I haven’t heard a band this good from anywhere. They are ‘overachievers’ in their musicianship as well as their songwriting capabilities. Lost Language opens with a track called- “Glossolalia”. At first, there are chiming guitars and repetitive motifs similar to the Daydream Nation days of the 90’s. Bands like Sonic Youth and Polvo come to mind. It blends into a futuristic ambient backdrop setting for the mood of the album when vocalist Danny Byrne comes in. “Plurals” is a ferocious hard rocker to kick off the album, entering unknown territory with wild guitar arpeggios over  tribal drum grooves, rhythmic beats Jimmy Chamberlain would play. Notable tracks are the instrumental "Untold" which is predominantly synth driven with different sounds of feedback and noise coming in and out. “Mirrors” is outer-spacey, droning in luscious minor scale riffs. The rhythm section is minimalistic, very interesting in the way they use the ‘less is more’ theory, especially after presenting their musical prowess for most of the record. They make minimal sound maximal. I like how the rhythm section plays as much an important role as the lead vocal melodies. Byrne’s vocals are softer than the typical heavy prog singer, making them unique and different from the screamers, whether a band like Soundgarden or Dream Theatre in comparison. His voice is closer to Roger Waters or the British psyche folk singers of the 1970’s (e.g. Tim Buckley, Michael Chapman). But it’s new, a personality unlike any of the singers of today. I love the mix of atmospheric movements and high energy rock songs, which seems to be their thing when listening from start to finish. 

I would purchase this album if you’re into musicians‘ music, or experimental psychedelia, or modern progressive rock, as they suit either category quite well. Art rock, or landscape architectural rock, whatever you call it, it’s intense, intelligent and emotionally moving. They clearly have a vision of their own, placing them apart from the 'new prog' you hear about today, The Mars Volta or Coheed and Cambria. Lightsystem is paving their own way and who knows, might inspire a significant change in the genre to move even more forward theoretically and instrumentally. Years from now, I wouldn’t be surprised if they were conducting an orchestra to go along with this music.

Band Members:
Danny Byrne: guitar/vocals/electronics 
Jason Greenly: bass/electronics 
Matt Johnson: synth/keys 
John Kyle: drums/electronics


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