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If you are looking for new Stoner Rock, Doom, Heavy Psych or Sludge Metal bands, then you have come to the right place. Heavy Planet has been providing free promotion to independent and unsigned bands since 2008. Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Interview and Exclusive Video Premiere - The Witches Drum




With the imminent release of The Witches Drum's second full length, titled "Adjust Your Receiver", I caught up with bass player Owen Griffiths to chew the fat about their past, present and future, but what begins with some sad news ends with a very exciting announcement for the band and their fans. We at Heavy Planet can count ourselves amongst those fans with several of us giving them the props they so rightfully deserve, so it is with a mixture of sadness and gladness that we offer you this interview and an exclusive debut of their video for the song "(Sing Your Confessions To The) Voodoo Court" taken from their forthcoming album.

It's been a while since The Witches Drum's debut "Future King's Of An Empty Throne" was released. Can you tell us what's been going on with the band since then?

"I guess the main thing is we had a change of guitarist not long after the debut came out. Mat Warren came in - he had one practice then we supported Karma to Burn - trial by fire! After he bedded in on the songs we took time off gigging and wrote the album, then decided to buy some studio gear and Mat's recorded it at his house. That was last summer, we're just finished with it. Unfortunately during this time we've decided that the band has reached the end if it's life, so we're doing some farewell gigs and getting the record out, then that'll be that it seems."  

It is a real shame that you all decided to call it a day for The Witches Drum, especially now that you guys have made a lasting impression on the UK heavy music scene, but can you take us back to the beginning, how you all got together and what your collective intention was for the band at the time?

"It all started because of a small club called Tafod in Cardiff - the owner didn't really care about it, it just came with the hotel above, so I blagged the manager's job and started booking bands and club nights - everything from doom metal to drum n bass to folk gigs. Through that I met our original drummer Leo, and Joel (who was working the bar). At the start it was just the three of us, jamming out some noisy psychedelic stuff. Then Fry came on board, then Mike on guitar and it started to get a little more structured, I guess because we realized we had a great vocalist and the ability to write a song."


Since the incarnation of The Witches Drum there have been some unforgettable performances from you guys which no doubt secured yourselves support slots for Karma to Burn and Honky, which is no mean feat. The most legendary performances from The Drum have been at the free 'generator' parties you were involved in. Can you tell us about those, how they came about and the idea/intention behind them? I've heard the words "Welsh Kyuss" spoken with regards to The Witches Drum's DIY ethic and appearances at free outdoor/warehouse/wherever parties. 

"Really? "Welsh wreck heads" is probably spoken more often! The DIY ethic was there from the start I think - Fry's been involved in the free party scene for ages, and Joel used to run a squat and play in punk bands, plus with my experience with putting on gigs in Tafod we were never going to be a passive, begging for support slots kinda band. We'd get hold of a PA and play cafe's, warehouses, little bars. Then when summer came, and the techno/trance free parties would go off in the forests and mountains we'd drag our gear up and join in - The Witches Drum followed by 12 hours of acid techno. I think the last one we did was the best - Fry persuaded Spider Kitten, Death of her Money and a bunch of other bands to come play in a muddy field, with the biggest rig I've ever seen. In mushroom season! Total carnage. I think the police turned up at that one. They're obviously more effort and hassle than your average gig, but when you're released from the confines of curfews, door men, smoking bans, buying over priced beer etc etc you can cut loose and not worry about a thing."  


"Welsh wreck heads." Hahaha..That's very true, I can vouch for that.
I think some of the appeal for your fans is the DIY/punk rock ethic you guys have that is born from a tradition and a culture that never really went away since it began here. There is a rich history of free festivals in the UK going back to the late 60's and then throughout the 70's and up to the mid 80's before acid house/rave music came to the fore and dominated the free party scene. There are many great legends of shroom festivals in Wales with some great psychedelic rock bands turning up to play impromptu sets. Hawkwind were well known for this of course. Would you say they were an influence as I can hear a little of Hawkwind's touch on your first album? What other bands would you say The Witches Drum draw inspiration from?


"Yeah definitely influenced by Hawkwind - especially the first few albums. Individually, and as a band we have a pretty broad range of influences - there's the obvious stuff- The Stooges, Sabbath, Zeppelin, Kyuss, Monster Magnet, Clutch etc, but then I've been listening to Bill Withers all day, and I know the others love funk, jazz, blues, dub, folk, rockabilly, techno, punk and on and on. The bands that came out of Wales around the mid to late 90's made a big impact on us - like Acrimony, Taint and Suns of Thunder.  Also I love bands that created their own weird little world around them, and aren't afraid to go a bit over the top with their live show - like Jane's Addiction or The MC5."


The Witches Drum's live shows have become almost legendarily debauched affairs, especially with Matt Fry's crazy stage antics; wearing his bright yellow marigolds and covered in glitter and face paint; it's like a dazzling and slightly dangerous freak show with great music. Are there any live shows you guys have done that particularly stick in your mind as the most whacked out and weird, worryingly dangerous or just plain wild?

"I think the one that sticks out most was in a warehouse in Cardiff about 3 years ago - it was my birthday so we were pretty loose by the time we hit the stage. Fry ended up brawling in the crowd, Joel was on top of a metal joist above the stage, probably not the tightest set we've ever played! There was the one where Joel threw his amp across the stage then jumped on Fry, rolled around on the floor in some glass and put him in A&E- that was the night before we recorded the first record. There's probably loads of stupid shit we did in the early days, but we'll sound like a right bunch of twats if I carry on!"

  
You said at the beginning of this interview that The Witches Drum will be no more after the release of the second album and with a few final gigs in the pipeline you guys are going out in a blaze of glory it seems. But is that totally it for The Witches Drum? I know several of you have various other projects on the go so can you tell us about those to?

"Well you never know what may happen in the future, but at the moment that's totally it for the 'Drum- you have to know when to step off the wave before you get smashed on the rocks. As for other projects Stevo plays bass in HOMOH and Zinc Bukowski, and I'm sure he'll pop up on drums for someone soon, Fry's making electronica in Deformed, Pulsating, Vibrating, and I think he might be jamming some rock stuff as well, and Mat and I play instrumental psych/space stuff in The Cosmic Nod."



And with that this interview was wrapped up just in time for the announcement that The Witches Drum will be playing this years DesertFest in Camden, London. For our UK/Euro (and everyone else) readers; if you are attending this years DesertFest, be sure to catch The Witches Drum, as along with their mind melting blend of heavy psyche and stoner rock, their live performance is sure to be a highlight of the festival and will be a talking point for a long time thereafter; just like every other The Witches Drum gig. They have that effect on people.







Wednesday, February 26, 2014

New Band To Burn One To: KING BISON

HEAVY PLANET PRESENTS...KING BISON!


"From the first hell-blazing drum fill of "Queen of the South" to the soul scorching southern boogie swagger of EP closer "One Step", Red Hill, PA three piece King Bison grabs you by the balls and don't let go. Combining a vintage southern hard rock strut with an updated bluesy stoner rock groove the band shakes and shimmies through these four solid rock nuggets. Gruff beer-drenched vocals, a wondering bass line and mammoth riffs sounds like a bastard mix of Molly Hatchet, Clutch and Dixie Witch. If you are a fan of what Small Stone Records does then this band will be right up your alley. You will feel your beard instantly grow as you crank up this fine example of kick ass rawk and roll!" 






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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday Sludge: Bottom Feeder - "Grinding Teeth"


You can believe all you want there's a life to everything. Argue with the tautology that one thing leads to another and the symbiosis is free of time restraints. There's no life without soil, there is no soil without life, right? Stop it. There's no soil without death. It's a caustic and callous perspective, but if nothing died we'd run out of space to live. So simplistic, I know. But death becomes soil and soil nourishes crops and crops are dealt all over the world to feed just about everything.

But you don't wanna hear about death. You wanna hear about soccer games and good times with old friends and you want social media to scatter that fuckin' fake bullshit to all your fish-eatin' followers so your life can seem less awful than theirs. Come on. We're exhausted with all of it, and so is Copenhagen's Bottom Feeder. Their 2013 LP Grinding Teeth missed my queue, and finally screening the album in winter's worst months is my just desserts. If there IS a life to everything, then Bottom Feeder offer reminders of death, loss, and scattered thoughts.

From the onset of Void's cryptic politicking and repellent screeches, listeners will struggle to balance the abrasive and the numbing. Sunday Sludge hasn't offered anything this vile in ages, as agonizingly sharp and piercing licks counter sanded flesh. Seven staggering ticks both stick and sway beneath the veil of a Randy Blythe vocal, both viscous and torturous, swaying and hanging like limbs stuck to severed tendons.

On Life Support offers sick groove behind abrasive feedback, but we're given no reason to dance. The track showcases a duality that makes this album so compelling. It's frightening to realize you're not allowed to feel good. A punctuated, pervasive stop-start dynamic is all-encompassing in its negativity, but the marriage of punk meters and locomotive thickness is a lacing that ignores traditional structures. A lead-in to the title track smooths a wavering of black-molasses doom spreading over slabs of cold-stone sludge. Grinding Teeth's most vile track is also its most true, offering swaying hatred and a staggering spew of vitriol to anyone who'll listen.

The revved sludge of Tension drags us through frozen fields littered with broken stalks. There's no end to the abrasion, and while guitars offer the promise of escape, it's those filthy tempos that pin your shoulders. The back-and-forth is as dizzying as the repeated strikes, but you'll ultimately return to your knees in an indentured servitude. The echoed haunt of Dehydration is intermissionary in its unsettling showcase of a slow, dark embrace. If you can, simply give in to the extraction of hope. At least for a few moments until we meet the cringe-worthy Trusted By Few. The pendulum of lament has swung straight south, while pairing grinds and screeches is a punky-paced fist-fuck of motor-breathed tempos. Believe it or not, it's as in-your-face as anything else on the album.

If you've read this, you're likely the sort of fuck-up who could embrace Grinding Teeth's all-encompassing negativity. Do you really wanna feel better about things? Sometimes there's comfort in darkness, perhaps because it's real and un-glossed. If the sweet ain't so sweet without the sour, then Bottom Feeder have the world pretty-well figured out. These six tracks are jaded, sharp, and painful. When you think about it, it sounds like your marriage. Your commute. Your meetings with your boss. Maybe Bottom Feeder know you better than you know yourself. Sad, huh?

For fans of: Grief, Buzzov*en, Eyehategod
Pair with: Indian Brown Ale, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Inc.




Friday, February 21, 2014

Shawn 'Lunchbox' Nichols reviews Ancient Warlocks

Ancient Warlocks


     Ancient Warlocks debut LP is not one to be played at a low volume. It wasn't until I turned the volume up that I experienced the sonic assault of epic proportions. Hailing from Seattle, Washington Ancient Warlock deliver eight smokey psychedelic stoner rock masterpieces for their debut LP. Darren Chases fuzzy guitar sound and riffs set the atmosphere for what is to be a great album. Lead by Aaron Krauses smokey vocals and powerful leads and rounded out with Anthony 'Oni' Timm on bass and Steve Jones on Drums these guys work together to entrance and pull you into their world of wizards and dwarves by your ears, 

     The album starts off thick and muddy with Into The Night and from there just gets better. The standout tracks are Sweets Too Slow, Killers Moon, and the album closer Sorcerer's Magician. All the songs are straightforward and waste no time getting down to business. Aaron solos over Darren head bobbing riffs while Anthony and Steve keep the beat steady and strong. This album starts out strong and ends like a 300 wrestler sitting on your chest...Heavy!






Thursday, February 20, 2014

EP Review - OH NO by HOMOH


Oh no, it's HOMOH and they're back with "OH NO", their second EP which follows last years "DEMOH" and it is as sickeningly sludge laden and deplorably grimy as their debut is but this time there is actual singing going on, but I'll get to that in a bit.

HOMOH are 3 sick bastards from South Wales, UK, home to "nu-metal's" most disgraced rock star and devourer of young souls who is now languishing in gaol forever fearing for what's left of his shitty little life. HOMOH may be sick, but not that kind of sick; just their music is sick, but in a really good way. As individuals, they are personable, straight up geezers who play disgustingly heavy sludge that will leave you heaving small amounts of vomit into your mouth giving you a long lasting pukey taste, but lap it up because you are getting another go at your dinner for free.

Every bastard needs a bastardess, and HOMOH bring theirs in the form of, well, "Bastardess" which opens "OH NO" with a slack bottomed stoner-ish twang and screechy ominous feedback leading to a balls kicking bendy riff that lurches forward violently and pushes buildings over as it goes. Ghastly vocals are bawled out, asking "What is this inside of me?" and then comes the singing part. The juxtaposition of almost creepy melodic singing against the wall of filthy chugging sludge gives the sensation of repeatedly banging your head against said wall whilst a gaggle of extremely scary nurses sing you a lullaby. Your sanity doesn't last for long though, as HOMOH then drive the point home with a repetitive riff that bores into your head bone like a malicious trepanning tool that serves to increase pressure on your brain rather than release it.
 
An evil twin appears with "Hell Bent" picking up the pace in a gust of urgent, nervous excitement and large twanged bendy riffs that slam and roll along with tightly tumbling drums and with plenty of guttural howls added to the quickly sickening porridge. A marching riff has the track slow its pace to a stomp and sludge later on that feels like taking hefty weighted full body slams from persons of enormous stature leaving you quite breathless and worried.

And so you should be when "Ugly Baby" completes the triplets that make up HOMOH's "OH NO" family. It is delivered from split open feedback and comes to life with a pummel of punching riffs and lurching, teetering and toppling drums. Throat shredding howls and grunts make this one fugly kid but almost serene singing appears again at near mid-way point that lies underneath the throaty barks and which could be heard as a very terrifying midwife there to deliver "Ugly Baby" and the singing is an attempt to quell its black sludge temper. Ultimately all attempts fail however as the sludge turns blacker and "Ugly Baby" triumphs and morphs into a doomed beastly form that hulks along, sickeningly dishevelled but with a hard focused purpose nonetheless.

HOMOH are to be supporting Church of Misery towards the end of April. A most fitting support band if ever there was one. Wild madness is sure to ensue.





Wednesday, February 19, 2014

New Band To Burn One To: MOUNTAINSIDE

HEAVY PLANET PRESENTS...MOUNTAINSIDE!


"As I curiously gazed at the cover of Mountainside's third release "Solitary, Poor, Nasty, Brutish and Short" , I couldn't even begin to imagine what I would find within. Unbeknownst to me the band has been around since the early 2000's. Five simple words stare back at me and  in someway or another are able to capture the devastation and diversity that this band from Lithuania purveys. From the interesting track listing to the thought provoking song titles it is evident that there is nothing short of ordinary about this band. Thunderous and precise, complex yet simple this album is full of nasty jackhammer riffing, brutish gut punching vocal aggression and unconventional song structures. Also evident is the band's punk/hardcore/thrash influence on the short and jarring track "Stone Into Sand". Sitting here in a solitary state, I try to soak in all of the different styles and influences that comprise such a monolithic band. So to all of the poor bastards like myself that have never heard this amazing band before, the time is now to savor the opportunity!





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Sunday, February 16, 2014

Sunday Sludge: Krautstomper


The next time Russell throws a birthday party for himself, I'd better pretend to be busy. Someone showed up with a handle of Johnnie Walker Black, and before my face hit the pillow I'd find myself with a broken thumb. Something doesn't taste right and the smell of sausage this morning is about to turn my stomach sour. Small steps, shallow breaths, and some smooth stoner sludge just might help me get outta this.

Berlin's Krautstomper paint as much with psychedelia as they do with churning tempos, but the amalgam of the weird, the heavy, and the silken is unique and refreshing. On their self-titled five-track EP, these... um... krauts whet your tripper with a broad arsenal of influence and approach. Each track carves its own steady swell to shape a sound that caters to numerous pegs that can't be stuffed into drilled cavities.

The viscous sludge of Wand opens the release on a misleading assumption that the band is falling in line with chugging basslines and jagged guitar barbs. The track is introductory and brief, warming your senses just enough to dull them for what lies ahead. The punchy, multi-faceted Oranje is littered with pensive passages and guitars spray with surprising focus. If TooL ditched the art rock posing, they may have warbled along like this.

Fret-noodling appears front and center on the quick-paced Embankment. Slippery and fleeting, these instrumentations escalate and dive repeatedly with patches of echoing buzz, a delicious duality that serves as primer for the EP's closing tandem. Spanning thirteen minutes with Herman and Potaten, stoner grooves and cryptic samples complement the light dusting of spacey Jeff Buckley guitar whispers. Herman lounges and sprawls, allowing laziness before progressively boning out. Potaten, on the other hand, enters sullen and somber, panning distantly with a subtle hint of Primus. The rhythm lifts and before this instrumental journey concludes, we're welcomed by pugilists' grinding meters to balance the ethereal themes.

Eclectic and divergent, this release stands out from routine Sunday Sludge offerings in its departures. Krautstomper may be relatively cherubic, but their delivery of rhythm and melody is given highest praise, that being considered unable to categorize. If you want your Sundays easy, this EP may be your cure-all. There's enough chug to rev your recovery, but Krautstomper tug the reigns just enough to steady your shakes. And when the bed stops spinning, give this one a second rotation.

For fans of: TooL, Primus, The Sword
Pair with: Samuel Adams Rebel IPA, The Boston Beer Company




Thursday, February 13, 2014

LP Review "Estron" by Slomatics


Ireland's Slomatics have been around since 2004 and in that time they have put out numerous releases and have appeared on splits with the likes of Conan. Their fourth full length LP "Estron" shows that Belfast born Slomatics are easily as heavy as any of the heaviest bands you are ever likely to hear. Slomatics are bone breakingly low-end and have mastered the art of boiling their riffs down into simple yet extremely heavy weight drones that give a few nods to Torche/Floor in a rumbling earthquake of bomb strings.

The 7 tracks that make up "Estron" give you little time to catch your breath from the chest crushing freqs that are delivered in punishing waves of massive and explosive doom riffs, except that is for the 6th track "Red Dawn" which serves as a kind of retreat from the storm of pulverizing heaviness. That is not to say that every track on "Estron" is a relentless barrage of lowness as there are captivating moments of psychedelic droning atmospheres and experimental use of effects and synthesizers that show Slowmatics are about far more than just playing the biggest and heaviest riffs that 3 humans can possibly produce together without causing serious injury to themselves and anyone who is listening. "Estron" is very close to being dangerously heavy and this is at the core of Slomatics' sound but the futuristic psychedelic sound-scapes produced by these 3 Irishmen make this album one of the most enjoyable listening experiences so far this year.



Wednesday, February 12, 2014

New Band To Burn One To: BLACK HELL OIL

HEAVY PLANET PRESENTS... BLACK HELL OIL!


"Stomping through the heavy snow like a Sasquatch on a mad rampage comes Saskatoon, Canada's Black Hell Oil. On their latest self-titled EP the band trudges through five furious and fuzzed-out heavy rockers. The EP starts out with the contagious rock anthem "Smoke You Up". Heaviness to the max as the guitar detunes into a gargantuan riff and then rips into a killer stoner rock frenzy. Steady and intense, the band incorporates a vintage seventies feel into their sound. The opening riff on "Rock and Roll Ain't the Same These Days" is absolutely bone-crushing! The EP ends on a high note with "Bring It On". A fast-paced riff-rock neck-snapper that ties the EP all together. For those of you that have lost hope, Black Hell Oil is proof that good rock music is alive and well."



Beer Pairing: Hairy Knuckles Stout

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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sunday Sludge: Druglord - "Enter Venus"


"I think if you were Satan and you were settin' around tryin' to think up somethin' that would just bring the human race to its knees, what you would probably come up with is narcotics. Maybe he did."

45 rpm offers higher fidelity, so I'm not sure how I got it wrong in the first place. Complicating things was my impish delight to hear something so deliberate and cavernous delivered with such slow sustain. But 33 rpm quickly got pretty fucking weird and I got pretty fucking curdled. Regardless of user-error, Richmond-based stoner-doom trio Druglord readily demonstrate their damp, viscous, achingly slow blend of trippy psychedelia and smoky sludge on the four-track Enter Venus, an essential exercise in unsettled recreation.

Initially hushed with warbled Christian propaganda, Grievous Heaving's scorching doom decadence hangs heavy with static and Tommy Hamilton's distant reproach. Fur and filth fuse on gargantuan riffs, but jagged interruptions pierce the veil of white noise and welcome the filter of echoed laments. By the time we discover the opener's relatively abrupt close, we've grown beards and can recognize that sherm sticks are taking this experience a bit too far. *Twitch*

Not one of the album's mossy timbers clocks under six minutes. Feast On The Eye chortles and spews for seven and a half, slow-slicing riff slabs atop HufKnell's half-eyed drum sprays. As guitars swell only to later splinter into bite-sized tablets, we're dragged through trance-inducing progressions. Slowing toward a threesome of riffs, vocals, and spooky cathedral organs breeds an escapist's abduction. The delicious trip commands your full absorption; classic Stockholm Syndrome, y'dig?

And Side B? Well...

The album's title track dodges puddles only to stumble into a nebulous web of expanding stickiness. Distortive fuzz is garnished with ribboned licks and teasing pauses, drawing you into a narrowing corridor with a vocal that's more depraved here. Innards spiral to reveal their center before jumping back into the haze, with slivers clarity hardly allowing a healthy breath. What ensues is a collapse of stone and smoke, promising an unnatural side-B experience best served behind vinyl's crackle. Let Us Bleed offers the truest sludge tempo, led by the ringed nose of descending drums. Hamilton's howl spars with deliberate rhythms both distant and so beautifully unsettling. Of course this closer briefly offers marquee billing to reflective plucks, but the psych-doom onslaught that ensues hits heavy and litters our flesh with track marks. Enter Venus saved its finest moment for last, shaking listeners and yanking our jaws south.

This is hardly an experiment. This isn't a precocious white girl anxiously waiting in the car as you score some Friday night supplies. The gravity of Druglord's sound may as well be a fifty-pound rucksack as you wander a muddy path. Enter Venus IS drugs. For all the spook and stick, these four tracks stay fluid and never gum up. I can't help but wonder if this exposure will somehow have an effect on my later years. Druglord are gonna house up in my spine and periodically travel to my brain. But my family won't bother wiping drool from my chin or unclenching my teeth. They'll have a harder time keeping me from stomping holes through the floor.

For fans of: Windhand, Sabbath, Salem's Pot
Pair with: 80-Acre Hoppy Wheat Beer, Boulevard Brewing Co.


Thursday, February 6, 2014

LP Review "Strange Wave Galore" by Radar Men From The Moon


Eindhoven's instrumentalist heavy psych-rock 4 piece Radar Men From The Moon very recently dropped their third full length entitled "Strange Wave Galore" and I do believe it to be their best work yet. Since their debut, "Intergalactic Dada & Space Trombones" released back in '11, RMFTM have seen a rapid rise in popularity after turning many a head and ear towards their unique take on heavy-psych and experimental stoner rock. With "Strange Wave Galore" RMFTM reveal a new maturity and have evolved their sound since their debut but they have not sacrificed any of the best elements that made their previous 2 releases such great albums in their own right.

 "Strange Wave Galore" falls upon you in vast waves of surging, crushing fuzz, trippy sci-fi technoid synths, razor sharp drumming and mind bending psychedelic jams that twist and morph through the many intricate transitions that are so flawlessly played by RMFTM. There is a noticeable formula that RMFTM have running through many of their songs but they never fail to surprise. You can always pretty much guarantee that at some point the huge, throbbing fuzz riffs will come to melt your brain but it's how RMFTM lead the listener to that moment that delivers the most surprises and it is this method of experimentation that makes "Strange Wave Galore" so exhilarating to hear. The sensation that RMFTM create is of traversing through the galaxy at great speed in a big shiny spaceship with a kaleidoscope of stars and colors spiraling inside your head while a crystalline futuristic cityscape begins to form in front of your eyes as the destination comes into view. My favorite track on the album "The Sweet Confusion" is a fine example of a blasting surge of solid fuzz that fuels the Radar Men From The Moon spaceship onto it's destination to Fuzzatron 666 in the Stoner sector of Heavy Space Rock. It's far out man, really really far out.

You definitely need this album in your lives.



Wednesday, February 5, 2014

New Band To Burn One To: Kal-El

HEAVY PLANET presents...KAL-EL!




"Out of the ashes of such heavy metal acts as Theatre of Tragedy, Six Eyes Lost, Desspo and Gabbathor/Deviant rises a triumphant and celebratory ode to the love of the riff. On their debut release "Pakal", Kal-el sets forth a fuzz-fueled riff-fest guaranteed to warm your bones on a cold Norwegian winter's night. The band features Ulven (Vocals), Roffe (Guitars), Liz (Bass) and  Bjudas (Drums). 
With a straight-forward approach and a penchant for the heavy, songs such as "Fire Machine" and "Falling Stone" are true stoner bliss. "Fire Machine" starts off with a kick-ass bass intro and grooves along while the Ozzy-like vocals soar. The band even offers their own rendition of the Sabbath classic "Hole in the Sky" added as a bonus track. You may be familiar with the band as their song "Quasar" was chosen for inclusion on this year's edition of "Bong Hits From the Astral Basement". A foot-stomping heavy brain smasher with a cool mid-song drum onslaught and bluesy guitar lead. Good stuff!"

 According to the band, the album can currently be found on iTunes. 

Beer Pairing: SUNTURNBREW


Monday, February 3, 2014

Red Hot Rebellion Announces New Album & Comic Book


A full-length comic book AND concept album about a band of intergalactic heroes out to save Earth with the power of rock 'n' roll.

A comic book AND an album? Say what!?

You heard it right! Red Hot Rebellion II is a full-length comic book AND music album. Both go together like peas and carrots. Like peanut butter and jelly. Like Batman and Robin. Like Marshall amps and rock ‘n’ roll!

In their first self-titled album, Dayton, OH rockers, Red Hot Rebellion, released a comic book where each single page of the book went along with each single song on the album. RHR bassist/vocalist, Jim Tramontana notes, "It has been super popular with music fans, collectors, and the comic con crowds. So, we decided to expand on the concept and create a more expansive story-telling universe. The music, the lyrics, the story, and the art are all inextricably linked together in one super awesome visual and audio experience."

Highlights:

  • The innovative concept! This is a full length, 28-page comic book AND 13-song album. The comic and album are two parts of the same story.
  • The great art! Amazing pencils by Scrap/Seven Sisters artist, Chris Martin. Colors by IDW colorist, Julie Wright.
  • The fun story! For fans of Rock & Rule, Heavy Metal, This Is Spinal Tap, and Metalocalypse, this is a fast-paced, high-stakes adventure with a side of humor.
  • The amazing music! 13 high energy tracks of pure rock fury! Whether you call it arena rock, punked up metal or metalish punk, it's 13 explosive megatons of rock 'n' roll!

What's it all about?

In all the universe, only a handful of sentient worlds create music, let alone the most evolved form of music: rock ‘n’ roll. Earth was on track to be admitted into the Galactic Union, but somewhere along the line its rock ‘n’ roll turned weak. RED HOT REBELLION, the second best band in the galaxy, has been sent to Earth in order to steer humanity back on its proper path. But it looks like they've hit a few snags...





Visit Kickstarter campaign page: http://redhotrebellion.com/kickstarter

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Sunday Sludge: Godhunter - "City of Dust"


I visited Tucson four years ago. It was a quick weekend trip to see friends, a trip that included stops at Starbucks and In-N-Out Burger, jaunts to Wasson Peak's trails and Tubac's historic buildings, and a now-evident naivete about what the city's truly like. I knew nothing of the area's water supply issues, the state's correctional system's "Death Yards," or the dusty malaise regularly experienced by no small number of Tucson's own.

On 2011's Wolves, Tucson's Godhunter attacked humanity, specifically humanity's (lack of) presence in society while chiding automatons for accepting all they're fed. With the release of City of Dust, the stoner-sludge quintet's attack is more balanced, more focused, and more specific. What results is a fully-realized conceptual lament on the state of their surroundings, spreading angst and exposing truths across eight tracks that progressively pick up steam and release the hounds. These dudes are pissed.

Godhunter waste no time outlining the relationship they share with their city, as Charlie Touseull barks with weathered assurance of "that duality that defines me." The doom cadence and stoner-sludge groove are, by now, part of Godhunter's foundations. But the deepening march lunges and the shifts in pacing offer consistent abrasion, rivaled by sticky guitar explorations at track's end. As complexities reveal themselves amid the lumbering doom of Rats in the Walls, listeners will begin to see where Godhunter are taking us. Rhythms may lift, but our knuckles will continue to drag as we're consistently subjected to slow, solid slugs.

As these tracks progress, so does the descent into shells of ourselves. The darkness revealed on Snake Oil Dealer is exploited, buzzing with bleak realizations and breaking down to ring your ears. Godhunter effectively inject strong press clips, particularly here with a sheriff sharing thoughts on the attack of Gabrielle Giffords. And I honestly can't say whether the crackling fire and coyote howls put me at peace or will keep me awake tonight. Shooting Down the Sun follows as an acoustic reprieve, clubbing with emotion and stinging loss to juxtapose itself from the balance of these songs. The dual vocal is a somber spar "singing songs of hope, cringing from despair." This tandem is lonely and powerful.

Godhunter return to the stoner-sludge trenches on Palace of Thorn, peppering veiled vocals within the pressing low-end valleys of repetition. When the brakes hit, it's as if we're approaching a roadside wreck. The track scrapes toward warping psychedelic spirals, grinding directly into the title track. With the album's truest exercise of sludge, the band slam both Tucson and the whole of Arizona, questioning leadership and promising revolt. If the album's vitriol has a marquee track, this is it. "Home is where the heart is, hell is where the home is." Jesus, these fellas get straight to the fucking point. Though effective on its own, the song is an enticement toward the closing triptych's final chapter, Plague Widow. An ominous, creeping death permeates until spite and malice crash through the black party. The clouds simply never clear, hanging with a sticky, churning tempo that swells and heaves. An icy tinsel is strewn about, but the growing, unified chant sends an ultimate script of futile non-acceptance.

It's clear peace and happiness are Godhunter's white whale. The only option left is to embrace the flames and burn with the priest. Tales this morose and despondent need the occasional chaotic implosion, and Godhunter smear a canvas with ugly truth. These eight tracks won't warm your bones. But more importantly, they'll crack open your crusty, sunken eyes. Throw in gigantic riff timber and hickory-smoked rhythmic filth and we're hearing one of 2014's best albums. City of Dust is a structured and informed refusal of acceptance. In the sludge style, we rarely get this much substance.

For fans of: Eyehategod, Sourvein, Black Tusk
Pair with: Green Bullet Triple IPA, Green Flash Brewing Co.


Saturday, February 1, 2014

Shawn "Lunchbox" Nichols Mixed Reviews

SubRosa-More Constant Than The Gods

 

     On SubRosas 5th album(3rd full length) More Constant Than The Gods, this Salt Lake City band crafts one of the most beautiful doom/sludge albums that I have heard. The band consisting of Rebecca Vernon(Guitar, Vocals), Sarah Pendleton and Kim Pack(Violin, Vocals), Andy Patterson(Drums) and, Levi Hanna(bass) craft six songs that take you on an emotional ride that leaves you melted into your chair as if you just smoked some of the finest herb known to man.

     Usher opens the album ethereally with soothing vocals and violin and builds to one of the best heavy metal albums I've heard this year. At no time during the album does it ever get boring or seem contrived, even when the songs go over the 10 min mark(and there are four of them here). The fact that it never seems boring is due to the strings which bring an added beauty and darkness to the songs. The lyrics throughout the album are sung as if they were written along with the riffs and paint a  magnificent picture of loss, death, and obsession. I could not find a song that I did not like throughout the entire record. The stand out tracks would be Ghost Of A Dead Empire, Fat Of The Ram, and the albums closer No Safe Harbor. I am looking forward to hearing more from SubRosa in the future and hope they keep crafting wonderful chunks of peaceful, sludgy, doom.
                                                  
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