New Album Review – Bask “Ramble Beyond”

BASK

Ramble Beyond – Vinyl // CD // DD // Merch

Self Aware Records – America

This Charming Man Records – UK/EU – Release Date: March 24th, 2017

 

“Letter to the listener:

Progressive; heavy; psychedelic; Americana, have all been used to describe Bask. The truth, we are four musicians based in Asheville, North Carolina who love making music. We want rhythm heard for miles, melodies remembered for weeks and an honesty and sincerity felt to your bones. Most of all we want you to listen without concern for what you are hearing. To listen only for the sake of hearing. Esse Quam Vid”

Pro Band Pic

 

And so was my introduction to BASK a four piece group of individuals that keep to the two guitar / bass/drums formula for pure rock and roll, complete with two part vocals, yet they prefer to refuse any labeling, asking us each to listen for the pleasure of what we are taking in is giving as they weave each of these six compositions together with an ease that makes this second release a gem in and of itself. Scott Middleton , Jesse Van Note , Ray Worth and Zeb Camp make up what is BASK and this six-song offering of 39 minutes of some of the most sonic interlaced meanderings of four energies twisting through time and sound be it the quick fade in of winds stirring skies underneath the trees of ‘Asleep In The Orchard’ before the power chords enter and take you back to the almost dreamy texture as that voice enters describing the fruit hanging around as you close your eyes to see the picture this quartet is painting with lush, lingering strokes that keep you entranced and moving at the same time. ‘A Graceless Shuffle’ comes out with a staggered gallop pace and upbeat yet still rolling along the road type of jaunt with “The paths all closing in” as the tempo shifts to a faster cadence as the shuffle goes on, up until “…the strychnine in my blood.” closes out. ‘In The Black Fir’ begins with that haunting slide that makes your hands grab an air guitar and comes on with that heavy-handed thick chording that drives forward taking you with willingly for the entire seven minute plus opus of our traveler. So many musical textures are contained in this track alone to garner every rock-tag out there and shows exactly why BASK ask you to listen for the sake of the listening itself as they let you savor each flavor as one and a whole, all at once. The dark ominous fade-out is perfection. ‘Kindled Green’ opens cleanly and before you are 30 seconds in, bone-crunching chords are all over you as the clean notes continue in that lofty manner we have come to expect from the first half of this album and then a vocal harmony enters and shows another flavor not expected but full of the savory just the same that washes your palette with a warmth of remembrance and the heavy comes right back to compliment as the vocals echo along in the confines and you grasp each repeat.

 

SelfAwareVinylPromo_original

 

The slowing pace belies the end and then… slow fade in of swirling notes that slip around your feet and slightly bending clear notes take you to ‘The Lonesome Sound’ as the words of life describe us all one at a time and all at once together as one and none at the same time. Slower-paced but ever so heavy and plush and just plain complex that there is no denying this band their own request to listen for the pure joy that listening to this WILL give you regardless of musical preferences. Most bands write the greatest record in their arsenal with the first one, and then they try to recapture whatever they think that one had and a lot really do fail miserably. BASK has done the seeming impossible and come out swinging as a band that appears to have grown and matured to become 300% of what they were with the first release. Closer ‘Mush! Carry Me Home’ perfectly wraps this record with another tale that shows the lyrical majesty that has permeated this one from the front and allows each member to shine as this song brings back around each ingredient that has made this meal so satisfying and wanting even more as the last drops off. If they come anywhere close, you GOTTA GO and support them. I have a feeling it will be one to talk about for years to come if this release is any indication. Get the record and go support!!

 

Words by Ric “Suisyko” Dorr


New Album Review – Pallbearer “Heartless”

Pallbearer

Heartless – Vinyl // CD // DD

Profound Lore – March 24th 2017

Have you ever seen the expanded version of Bruce Lee’s “Enter The Dragon?”  During the opening sequences, he expands more upon the philosophical underpinnings to his martial arts style, or no style, as he’d probably say.  He believes that the ultimate form is no-form, that a Zen-like detachment from the rigors of the overly traditional allows for unparalleled creativity, fluidity and freedom of expression.  He definitely believes that this no-form is a clear expression of intense feeling, as there’s also a poignant scene of him training an aspiring student where he emphasizes “emotional content” in the student’s strikes.  “No, not anger!!” he corrects, “emotional content.”  I re-watched this movie quite recently on one fateful night, and it got me to thinking about how these concepts played out in music.  And that got me to thinking about Pallbearer….

My first experience with Pallbearer was seeing them tear it up live.  That’s always a great place to start when you’re getting into a band, because there’s no pretense there, only direct experience. Right before I first left Black Pyramid in 2011, we shared the stage at the first Days Of The Doomed Festival in Wisconsin.  I’d actually heard quite a bit about them, as they had a demo that was much lauded in both the traditional doom scene and the broader metal community, and they had a reputation for punishing heaviness live.  I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect.  Because of the name and their rumored heaviness, I was actually expecting them to be a death/doom band, which they clearly are not.  Needless to say, they didn’t disappoint in the slightest. Once I was properly baptized in the power and glory of their glowing tube amps, there was no turning back, and you could count me among the faithful.  What impressed me the most was their mixture of the traditional and the modern; they definitely nailed that timeless classical metal influence with their twin guitar attack, which alternated between crushing down-tuned riffs and labyrinthine dueling leads, yet the tones were more modern, while the songwriting itself was forward thinking and intelligent.  It didn’t hurt them any that their rhythm section was rock solid and the vocals were soaring high (so was I).  The experience was most triumphant and I was an instant fan.  This was indeed a band of exceptional promise….

 

Live Band Shot

 

Fast forward to a year later, and the release of their debut album, Sorrow And Extinction, on Profound Lore Records.  I have tremendous respect for that label, as they have discriminating and impeccable tastes.  What a sound Pallbearer had developed on record!  It was heads and tails above their demo: emotionally charged, transcendentally structured, and as meticulously melodic as it was devastatingly heavy.  Their debut quickly brought them to the forefront of the metal world, and with their sophomore album, Foundations Of Burden, they only solidified their destiny as the new rising stars of underground metal.  They experimented more with tempo and song structure, and deepened their understanding of the emotional power of melody.

This brings us to March 24th, 2017, the date they’ll unveil their latest masterpiece, the ironically named Heartless.  Well, I’d say that it’s ironic anyways, since their music seems anything but heartless to me.  It’s chock full of emotional content; it’s over brimming in every note they pick, every chord they strum, every drum that’s struck, every word that’s sung.  Not since the much missed doom masters Warning walked this world have I heard a band that so encapsulates the concept of emotional content.  This is a seven song, hour long tour de force of angelic agony, bizarre beauty, mind-melting misery and earth-shattering ecstasy.  I’ll admit that it’s a bit long in the tooth, and this really demands active listening.  Those who have the endurance and the attention span are duly rewarded, as this is as rich and fulfilling an album as I’ve heard in recent years.

Pro Band Pic_Good

 

I heard all kinds of wild rumors before Heartless even came out: they were a post-rock band now, the new album wasn’t heavy, they’d sold out.  Don’t believe the hype.  They’ve definitely taken a more progressive stance, though it’s not a radical departure by any means.  As my friend Stephen Loverme from the bands Olde Growth and Sea sagely stated on this very day, “The new Pallbearer sounds like a doomed out Porcupine Tree.  I’m 100% okay with this.” Wiser words are rarely uttered. There’s just more going on, from meticulously layered guitar passages that twist, turn and wind down all sorts of mesmerizing staircases, to subtle acoustic flourishes and backdrops of effected soundscapes, to melancholy harmonized vocals.  There are even more tempo changes, key signature switches, the versatility in the vocals, and clever changes in tone and texture than on the previous album, and the production is even more stunning and meticulous.  What’s most impressive is how subtle and slow burning it all is, how fluid and free, like the no-form of Bruce Lee’s metaphysical martial arts.  This is a modern masterpiece deserving of every iota of praise that’s thrown its way, paying tribute to the masters like Candlemass, Trouble, and the New Wave Of Heavy Metal, yet it’s delivered with such urgency that it’s just as immediate as it is an instant classic.  I’ve always said that it’s the reconciliation of opposites that makes for great art, a little lesson I learned from Herman Hesse’s novel, Narcissus And Goldmund.  The juxtaposition and paradox that Pallbearer pull off….it’s utterly stunning.  They’re the doom metal actualization and apotheosis of what Hesse was talking about.

Often I take a listener through an album track by track, so they can get some reflection of my experience.  I’m not going to do that here.  Not at all.  The reason is, I want you all to experience this for yourself without my impressions of the album coloring your sensations and perceptions.  Take this in, savor it, remember that first time you put the needle to the wax, or the CD in the tray, or pressed play on your computer.  Remember this moment, so that you can say that you were there when Pallbearer helped to redefine the face of modern doom metal.

Links:

Reviewed by Andy “Dingweed” Beresky


New Album Review – Devil’s Witches “Velvet Magic

Devil’s Witches

Velvet Magic – Vinyl // CD // DD

Cursed Tongue Records – released March 20, 2017

 

If you are ready for a psychedelic groove fuzz-fest, then this record might just be the thing for you. Devil’s Witches call Los Angeles home and judging by the subject matter on this record, you can tell where the inspiration to write this record came from. Upon first listen, it felt that the songs on offer here must be conceptually tied to one another. After researching their Facebook page, the suspicions were confirmed. The concept follows a discharged United States Vietnam soldier who is seduced by a voodoo woman who uses her powers to start a new world. “The story spans from the jungles of Vietnam, to the go-go bars of L.A. onto the Black Forest mountain region of south-west Germany and into France. It’s a tale of sex, seduction, exploitation, war, and redemption” and each track feels like a new chapter in a book.

Band Logo

 

Opening track, “Apache Snow” begins the proceedings with a textbook fuzzed out stoner riff. Lyrically, this song paints a vivid picture of what it must have been like to be in Vietnam during those tumultuous times in the 1960s. “Lying in the blood of the fallen, I bet you feel real groovy now” — yes, yes I do.  The mid song break is a psychedelic dream with flavors of the Orient which is followed by a great little jam session. “Pornodelic Opium Dreams” provides a well-placed interlude in the form of an acid-psyche instrumental. This one takes you on quite the journey (mushrooms optional).  “Voodoo Woman” has a few progressive flashes that provide a more unique and adventurous take on the genre of music Devil’s Witches play. “Velvet Magic” begins with a sexy, laid back feel followed by a welcomed change of pace upon its mid-song break and a faster paced guitar solo before going full circle and ending the way it began. The musical variety on this track certainly takes you on quite the musical venture. This grade of velvet magic is assuredly sublime. However, can’t help but wonder if these songs would be that much better with a clearer vocal production to contrast the fuzz. Videos for “Apache Snow”, “Voodoo Woman”, and “Velvet Magic” are all worth watching too as they each fit the overall vibe of the record with visuals that paint a more concrete picture of what the band is going for musically.

 

Promo Kit

 

Devil’s Witches have provided a valiant debut effort. Musically, conceptually, and atmospherically it takes you places. Despite the current abundance of new bands playing this genre of music, Devil’s Witches provide catchy arrangements that are well worth a listen and with a unique ability to paint an accurate picture about the subject matter at hand. Looking forward to what this band will come up with in the future. In the meantime, I’m ready to take this journey again.

 

Words by Santiago “Santos” Gutierrez


Album Review – THE OBSESSED ‘Sacred’ Review & Select Track Streams

1994. That was the last year The Obsessed released an official studio album with that year’s landmark ‘The Church Within‘, an album that many of us still worship to this day. Speaking of worship, the deity-like man behind the band, one of many he’s captained, is Scott Weinrich or as any legit music fans knows him, Wino. Unfortunately, as The Obsessed were on the verge of a commercial breakthrough at that time, life intervened as it often does, then detoured plans and the band itself eventually. The years passed and Wino built upon his respectable musical legacy elsewhere in acts like Spirit Caravan, The Hidden Hand, Saint Vitus and Shrinebuilder to name a few but while doing so, reverence for The Obsessed increased and grew unrestrained. Sure, there were half-hearted attempts to revive the band like at 2010’s Scion Music Fest in Memphis, TN, a performance that Wino himself would like to forget it seems but still yet, the legend of The Obsessed thrived. That mythos was fostered and fueled by the fact that The Obsessed were a unique entity, one that blurred divisive musical genre lines and drew from many wells so to speak. Elements of punk rock, doom, blues and just hard-edged rock and roll all amalgamated and augmented the band’s standing with music fans around the globe. Then, in 2016, something unexpected occurred as Wino and Dave Sherman, who’d reactivated Spirit Caravan the previous year, announced they were morphing it into the latest incarnation of The Obsessed. From there things rapidly took on a life on their own as the pair eventually settled in with bombastic kit-man Brian Costantino, took the iconic act on the road and soon revealed that a new album was in the works for Relapse Records.

Pro Band Pic

Picture courtesy of Susie Costantino

On April 7th, that album, ‘Sacred‘ will be unleashed upon the masses and it goes without saying that it could be the most crucial release ever from The Obsessed, a real make or break moment. The band itself has undergone some recent shifts in its line up too as Wino tinkers with trying to get the right people in place to bring the fullest potential out of The Obsessed at this all-too important time. Those alterations have now resulted in bassist/vox Reid Raley joining Wino and Brian in the band although former bottom-ender Dave Sherman was involved during the recording of Sacred. I think this is as good a time as any to inform you all, in the spirit of full disclosure, that Wino is one of my own personal music idols and my now decades long friendship with him possibly gives me some insight that others might not have. In my book, Wino can do no wrong and on Sacred, he and his bandmates haven’t as the album does what the band always has done as well, melding separates into one fluid, cohesive body of work. Sacred ties it all together, the old and the new, the past and present, the punk and the rock, the heavy and the melodic...it’s all here.

Things begin with an updated version of The Obsessed‘s “Sodden Jackal“, the title track of the band’s 1983 debut EP/Single. It’s a doomy, slowly churning tempest of thick riffing that seems to imply that there’s going to be a lot of ground covered on this album and there is. With the unfurling of the up-tempo “Punk Crusher” comes a song that embodies that early 90’s era sound of the band’s. Chock full of alternating tempos and intensities, ones showcasing a flurry of drumming antics and soulful vocals, the track has an underlying sense of urgency. Title track “Sacred” unfolds in a way that Wino has masterfully perfected over the years as the swaggering rumble of his guitar lays the groundwork for everything to ride high and tight upon. Those traditional vibes continue on the next cut as well, “Haywire“, another burly, groove-driven number that reflects upon life on the road within the current mess we call the modern day. It’s at this point that we arrive to the real meat of Sacred, a run of songs that ratchet up the stakes and risk everything that The Obsessed is about, past and present. The slow opiate roll of “Perseverance” is intoxicating, a doomy, driving number laden with some organs or keys in its underbelly. Next we get the first of two covers on the album, the band’s fantastic rendition of Thin Lizzy’s “It’s Only Money“. The choppy licks of the original are intact and the inter-playing vocals between Wino and former bassist Dave Sherman as they trade off is just an amazingly ideal approach to the song. Next, the scorching balls-out breakdown of the instrumental “Cold Blood” will have you breaking a sweat as you listen to this fiery exercise in musicality.

We now arrive at what has become one of my favorite songs from Sacred, “Stranger Things“, a heady, at times hazy number that possesses some of the heaviest riffs Wino has ever birthed. But the hook is as soon as they sink into you, things go a totally different direction with the cut’s upbeat verses and lighter side music beneath them. It’s a catchy as hell track but a different one, different for Wino, different for The Obsessed and in this case, different is damn good. Up next comes “Razorwire“, a song I was present for the live unveiling of awhile back and one that bridges the gap between the ’94 album and this one in my opinion as it could have very easily been a track from The Church Within. Very upbeat and high energy on this one but then the guys taper things down a notch or so on the doomy vibes of “My Daughter My Son“. This track, like so many countless others where Wino is involved, is a powerfully insightful, significantly relative song lyrically speaking, one where there is a huge message embedded in the life tale it contains. Clearly it is an open message from the Electric Prophet to his own offspring but it has such across-the-board relativity that nearly anyone should find a connection to the track on some level. Next comes “Be The Night“, the first new song to surface from the revived band back last year. It’s a short, to the point ripper that is high energy with a devil-may-care attitude and intensity…followed by the brief “Interlude” (no explanation or details necessary here). We arrive at the one-two punch of the album’s closing tracks now, the first is the ultra-doomy long player “On So Long” which, at a little over nine minutes in length, is a sultry exercise displaying the true power of The Obsessed circa 2017. Crushingly heavy with smoking blues licks resonating, Costantino’s laid black drumming keeps things anchored as the song’s hazy, ethereally-enhanced mystique rolls outward like a lethal fog. Things are brought to a close with the second cover on the record, Mountain’s “Crossroader Blues“, a funky, choppy blues tune that gives the original a run for its money.

At nearly an hour in playing time, “Sacred” feels more like an extensive musical journey that spans time, one allowing for glimpses into differing periods along the way. As I said earlier on, this record is like a bridge or perhaps a thread that stitches together all eras of The Obsessed into one bold presentation. All are relative and crucial to where the band is now, in helping to understand that, you have to know where it has been. This is that cohesive catalyst to grasping that reality and music fans around the world are all the better for it too as music is our own sacred, universal connection. An aptly titled album from an able-bodied, iconic band that has unquestionably delivered the Best Album Of 2017 to us all with “Sacred” from The Obsessed.

Words by Patrick “Riot” Whitaker


ASHEN HORDE ‘The Alchemist’ EP Review & Stream; Lyric Video

Ashen Horde

The Alchemist:  DD – March 14th // Limited 7″ Vinyl – shipping around April 14, 2017

Los Angeles, the city of lost, or fallen angels in this case, is home to the the two-man duo that is Ashen Horde. That duo, multi-instrumentalist Trevor Portz and vocalist Stevie Boiser, have just recently issued their 2-song EP, “The Alchemist“. If you know anything about this project then you know what they specialize in: fiercely scathing, viciously volatile blackened thrash metal. That fact is more then validated and reinforced here as these two tracks, “Arisen” (lyric video below) and “Fallen“, channel a transformative tempest of sonics that pummel your senses. Dizzying leads race to and fro upon the frets while machine gun-like drums pound away and drive the tracks with ever-forward propulsion.

Pro Band Shot

 

Keeping things fluid and even somewhat on the melodic side, the Ashen Horde pair unquestionably deliver the goods with their solid, well-structured style of what is akin to controlled chaos.  It is furiously Metallic music through and through while the powerful, razor blade-throat vocals snarl forth their venomous verbiage without relent. So, the latest call to the altar from Ashen Horde, “The Alchemist,” is streaming on their Bandcamp (below) and I recommend you give it a spin if so inclined.

For bands who like:  Skeletonwitch, Goatwhore, Satyricon

 

Link:

 

 Words by Patrick “Riot” Whitaker


New Album Review – Santo Rostro “The Healer”

SANTO ROSTRO

The Healer – Vinyl / CD / DD

Discos Macarras – released February 3, 2017

 

Coming at you from Jaen, Spain is this three-piece power-house consisting of Miguel Ortega – Guitar, vocals and percussion, C. Alejandro –  and Antonio Gámez – Bass and vocals.  The end result is really what matters and the results here are simply put, fucking STELLAR!!

SANTO ROSTRO, which translates in English to ‘Saint Face’, describe themselves as a mix of BLACK SABBATH and MASTODON, heavy on the splash of HIGH ON FIRE type power-riffs with a couple of twists each of jazz, blues and doom while garnished with several healthy drops of speed and aggro-chug guitar lines citing that all is “Done with care and much, much Savoir Faire.” Already in possession of a long live resume, this is their third album where they let loose with wide-open ballast and volume.

 

Santo Rostro Live Shot

 

Consisting of five tracks and clocking in at 37 minutes, this is by far the most cohesive collection of songs yet. As I listened, I was most impressed with just HOW heavy SANTO ROSTRO’s punch really is. From the opener ‘One Small Victory’ to the end of ‘Hylonome’, there is such consistency from one to the next that you barely notice one ending as the next begins and the flow is near flawless.

Each song here stands on its own with the strength of composition to the power of execution and together, there is no denying that they are ready to get their music out to the world!! Standout-track, in MY opinion is the title track ‘The Healer’ and at 10 minutes plus, it is not the longest but shines with the raging fury of the driving pace to the soloing that is completely balanced with the vocal delivery that commands your attention to get every syllable of this tale as it winds along, wrapping around your brain and not letting go.

 

Promo Pic

 

From everything I have found about SANTO ROSTRO, they tour endlessly and do not indicate that that will be changing anytime soon. Get this one ASAP and let’s get them to the US so we can witness this one in a live environment!!

Words by Ric “Suisyko” Dorr


New Album Review – Alastor “Black Magic”

Alastor

Black Magic – CD / DD

Twin Earth Records – March 18th 2017

 

There’s a bit of mystery surrounding the “Southern Swedish” band Alastor.  They never actually specify where exactly in Southern Sweden they’re from, and they only list a single capital letter as credits for who is playing what.  That’s okay, I can roll with that.  I love a good mystery, and it’s rather indicative of their overall aesthetic.  With an album title like this and a sigillistic logo, you damn well better believe that they’re singing about the occult mysteries, for better or for worse.

Why do I say for better or for worse?  Well….everyone sings about and is steeped in occult imagery these days, especially in doom circles.  Sure, there are rumors and allegations that I myself dabble in or have extensive knowledge of the occult, though that’s not something that I talk about or flaunt much, is it?  I’ll just say this – I do believe that the more recurrent occult themes are utilized, the more ubiquitous they become, the more they lose their unique power.  With that in mind, let’s talk Black Magic.  Alastor’s cauldron is full to the brim with your typical brew: one part fuzz-splattered, feedback laden guitar, one part reverb-drenched, so wet they’re dripping female vocals, one part groovin’ subsonic bass that swings like a hangman’s noose, and one part thundering drums.  Add some psychedelic and atmospheric flourishes, tune down and turn up accordingly, and voila!! Simmer and serve.

 

Live Band Shot

 

I’m going to address what’s a bit atypical – the vocals are pretty buried, and this sounded a bit strange to me on first listen.  They’re coated in delay and caked with reverb, though otherwise they’re relatively clean.  Still, it’s hard to decipher the lyrics, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing given the band’s flair for the mysterious.  It works with their overall vibe, and once I’d fallen under the spell of their second song, it all seemed natural.  Black Magic clocks in at 34 minutes, and consists of just three epic length tracks.  That’s pretty good for a debut; they come in, cast their choral curses, then leave you begging for more.  I can appreciate that approach.  The songwriting is pretty straight forward; opener “Enemy” begins with a barrage of feedback and sub-bass, then breaks into a menacing, staggering riff as the guitars boil and bubble in your ears.  This isn’t just a metaphor, there’s a lot of undulation and overtones going on in the drawn these drawn out chords, which really adds to the aesthetic atmosphere.  Eventually the song picks up to a more mid tempo groove, and the vocals kick in.  Around the 8 minute mark, it breaks down into feedback and allows the rhythm section to shine through the glorious haze, eventually morphing into a barrage of minimalistic yet psychedelic lead guitars until the song’s conclusion.

“Nothing To Fear” fades in with feedback and then launches right into a barrage of blistering riffs.  It’s simplistic yet effective, like a doll poked full of pins and needles.  The vocals come in soon after, and the song alternates between some verse and chorus riffs. At around the five and a half minute mark, it switches things up from this straightforward power groove into a more shuffling swing, there’s a bit more singing, some wah drenched soloing, and then it ends just as it began, with a bi-tonal blast of dual guitar feedback fading into nothingness.  The title track, “Black Magic” also starts with some feedback before establishing its main theme, a slow burning, sinister melody that morphs into more active riffs between the vocals, which are noticeably more menacing throughout.  I like this song a lot, it’s like the perfect culmination of Electric Wizard and Acid King, with the vocals alternating between a lower pitched delivery over the main riff, then switching to a higher register over a more melodic chord progression.   Once again, the song breaks down around the 8 minute mark into simply a slow rolling bass line drifting between the wash of echoed noise and the iconic hum of a cranked tube amplifier.  This gives way to some subtle drum work before the album collapses and climaxes into a doomy ode to the dark arts, complete with harmonized vocals that seems to add more layers each time their barely decipherable spell.

 

Frontman_ Live Shot

 

Fans of Windhand should eat this up, it’s the same sort of sound with its own twists on the style.  Like I mentioned above, this is a great debut, as it’s short and to the point, a statement of intent that leaves plenty of room for a young band to grow and develop.  If they’re going to distinguish themselves within an over-saturated scene of Black Sabbath worshiping Weedians, they will need to do just that, as this is obviously not the most original sounding album in the world.  I’d like to see them take some more chances with their songwriting and incorporate other influences on future releases, and I’d also like to hear them put the vocals up a bit more at the forefront, as they’re a strong point when they’re allowed some breathing room.  For now though, this hits the spot on for me on a gloomy Sunday morning.  I was raised Catholic, and I still to this day firmly believe in keeping holy the Sabbath.

Reviewed By Andy “YUM Dinger” Beresky


Y&T To Play The Grey Eagle In Asheville, N.C.; TEMPTATIONS WINGS To Support

Friday, April 21st, one of hard rock’s longest-running acts will descend into the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina when the legendary Y&T comes to town. They will be playing one of the region’s best venues, The Grey Eagle, and will be supported by AVL’s own Appalachian power doomers, Temptations Wings. Y&T’s origins date back to the early 1970’s when the band’s only current surviving member, Dave Meniketti, and his bandmates took the Yesterday & Today moniker inspired by The Beatles compilation sharing it. After an eventual shortening to Y&T, the group has spent decades sharing their music with the globe and now boast a discography of 18 albums, 3 greatest hits collections, a boxed set and have collectively sold over 4 million albums since their 1974 inception. Alongside lead gtrst./vox Dave Meniketti in the current incarnation of the band are rhythm gtrst./vox John Nymann, bassist/vox Aaron Leigh and drummer/vox Mike Vanderhule and without question they are going to rock The Grey Eagle.

TW

 

To support such an iconic act, regional favorite sons Temptations Wings have accepted the challenge and will bring their heavy hitting talents to the stage as well. The trio, gtrst./vox Micah Nix, drummer Jason Gardner and bassist Chad Barnwell have just issued their critically acclaimed new conceptual album ‘Skulthor Ebonblade‘ and are eager to bring the new material to life at such a beloved hometown venue, The Grey Eagle. This is truly a show not to be missed!

The Grey Eagle

 

For ticket info and purchase visit TicketFly.com – https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1299815?utm_medium=bks)

For venue information about The Grey Eagle including directions and more, visit their website or Facebook page here.

Links:

website – http://www.thegreyeagle.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/greyeagleasheville/

Words by Pat Riot Whitaker


New EP Review – Scars Divide “Sons of Terminator”

Scars Divide

Sons Of Terminators – Vinyl / DD

Domino Media Group 

 

Yes, in 2017 Metalcore, that bastard offspring of metal and hardcore, is still alive and kicking.  It’s a genre that’s had a tough time staying relevant, given the primitive nature of the sound, and there are only so many good breakdowns that a band can write.  For a metalcore band to make its mark in 2017, they’ve got to take some chances and add something to a formulaic style that’s often times stagnant.  This brings us to the Swiss band Scars Divide’s latest two song EP, Sons Of Terminators. The first track “Sons Of Terminators (Parts I and II)”, is a nearly ten minute, two part Metalcore odyssey of snarled vocals and grimy guitars that eventually gives way to a more symphonic section, cleaner singing, and a cool breakdown with a repetitive, syncopated rhythm.  It’s pretty ambitious, and is exactly the kind of approach that’s needed to stand out in a genre that’s often lacking in innovation.

 

Live Band Shot

 

The second song, “Venom Of Leviathan” is a shorter, more primitive affair, though it too has its moments thanks to some rather technical guitar work and some thoughtful melodic arrangements, keeping with that band’s more progressive tendencies.   I’ll readily admit that Metalcore is not my favored form of heavy music, though there are some records new and old that I certainly appreciate for their ingenuity.  This is the second EP that Scars Divide have released, following up a self titled EP in 2014.  If they’re able to sustain this kind of creativity for a full length, they may just make their mark and breath fresh life into a genre that’s in dire need of a makeover.

Thank you to Aurélien Dubois-Pham with Domino Media Group for the Promo.

Link:

Words by Andy “Dandy Candy” Beresky