DOUBLESTONE Devils Own/Djævlens Egn – Vinyl//CD//DD Ripple Music – Release Date: May 5th, 2017 Reviewed By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker
The Copenhagen-based Doublestone are back with their Ripple Music debut, ‘Devils Own/Djævlens Egn‘ on May 5th (today). Once again the band utilized the talents of Tony Reed (Mos Generator, Stone Axe) to master the new effort, one produced by the band themselves and Andreas Krohn at Wolf Ram Studios. With today’s release, guitarist/vocalist Bo Blond, bassist/vocalist Kristian Blond and drummer Mike James B. further explore the vintage-tinged sound that permeated earlier releases Set The World Ablaze (2013 EP), Doublestone (2013 self-titled) and the Wingmakers full-length.
On Devils Own/Djævlens Egn, the guys devise a seeming time machine and use it to return to an age of traditional, early rock music. In doing so, they keep the retroactive vibes and consistently rocking on such superb stand-out songs like ‘War Machine‘ (streaming below), ‘Man On The Hill‘, ‘I Natten‘ and ‘Solen Sover‘. Meanwhile, other cuts incorporate some nods toward a bit of psychedelia and more melodic influences. The partial title track ‘Devil’s Own‘ is a bit lighter fare that has an almost sea shanty-like quality to it while the other partial number, ‘Djævlens Egn‘, is a definite blues track.
Of the eight songs here, my personal favorite has to be ‘Here Comes The Serpent‘, an upbeat but doomy selection that weaves a mythical tale amid thick grooves and infectious rhythms. It rides along a direct trail of much heavier content and possesses some amazing guitar work as well. When taken in stride with the other songs, they all work together collectively to yield yet another incredible outing from this trio.
Once again, Ripple Music will release the new Doublestone album, ‘Devils Own/Djævlens Egn‘ worldwide today, Friday, May 5th. It will be available in the following formats: Vinyl, limited-edition/multi-colored Vinyl, CD and digital download.
EVOKE THY LORDS Lifestories – CD//DD Solitude Productions – Released April 24th, 2017 Reviewed By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker
Imagine if you will a band that melds a magical blend of psychedelia with traditional doom vibes, groove-fueled heavy rock and death metal-ish vocals. Oh, and they do it all from Russia with love and lysergic lividity. Well, thanks to Steve Woodier and Frazer Jones, I too have now discovered a band that does all of that and more, Evoke Thy Lords. Their latest offering, the 5-song ‘Lifestories‘, was dropped this week and now here we are experiencing this amazing aural ride for ourselves.
And what a ride it is, my friends! With fuzzened riffs that reverberate for miles, the fantastic trek begins with the stoner-fied rumbles of ‘Regressed‘. A hypnotic rhythmic pattern keeps you anchored in place while periodic flutes and trippy effect-laden vocals swirl about. The doom is undoubtedly doubled down upon with a southern slant on the superb ‘Still Old‘ and its follow-up, ‘Life Is A Trick‘. The latter’s music evoking a classic Trouble feel for the most part and takes on a much different approach vocally compared to the other cuts. With ‘Heavy Weather‘ comes a palpably more gloomy, somber tone as it encircles you with trance-inducing rhythms and minimalist drums at first. It all soon gives away to some increased tempos that eventually yield themselves to some hazy, ethereally enhanced music. I cannot help but have comparative memories of Cathedral’s ‘Forest Of Equilibrium‘ during this song and times during others as well. At nearly twelve minutes in length, it covers a lot of territory and contains some interesting tones or effects, like the springy or “boingy” sounding licks around the 8:15 mark. Things end with the scorching delivery of the last song ‘Stuff It‘, an uptempo, heavy hitter containing some killer guitar work. Yep, what is stuffed is opiate-like riffs drenching the cut, more airy flutes, and some true to form, tight knit drumming.
So, to summarize, Evoke Thy Lords‘ Lifestories tells a tale of unique woe but woe with a lot of go and energy really. Tagged with being Stoner Doom is really quite fitting and to be sure, the band has a rather unique sound and style of their own going on. If you’re open to hearing something different then by all means, perform your very own evocation via the Bandcamp embed below.
Swedish psyche/doom trio Vokonisare sharing a stream of the title track from their upcoming Ripple Musicrelease, ‘The Sunken Djinn‘ today. The band, guitarist/vocalist Simon Ohlsson, drummer Emil Larsson and bassist Jonte Johansson, will release the new album on June 9th. The eagerly anticipated new effort is the follow-up to last year’s critically acclaimed Olde Ones Ascending and today’s song share provides ample reason to fuel clamoring for the new record.
As the press release puts it: “Following countless appearances in the underground’s essential heavy directory The Doom Charts and frequent “Next Big Thing” mentions in end of year lists, Vokonis’ The Sunken Djinn will undoubtedly mark the arrival of Sweden’s next great hard rock and heavy metal export.”
A vinyl 7″ of today’s Single, ‘The Sunken Djinn’ (top image), will be released on May 13th from Ripple Music and the full-length album itself on June 9th.
The Taste Nation LLC review of ‘The Sunken Djinn‘ is coming to the site soon.
– Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker
1. The Sunken Djinn
2. Calling From The Core
3. The Coldest Night
4. Blood Vortex
5. Architect Of Despair
DHU Records & Doom Stew Records – Released April 20, 2017
Reviewed by Santiago “Chags” Gutierrez
San Francisco based doom/sludge/psych outfit Brume make a very impressive return with Rooster, a six track monster of an album all but guaranteed to change your perception on how this genre can still be playfully inventive. The band consists of Jamie (ex-Gurt) on guitar, Susie on bass/vocals, and Jordan on drums. Their cohesiveness has grown rather exponentially since their last effort, Donkey, which was already a rather impressive release. This time around, the band chose to work with producer, Billy Anderson. Jaime says he “brought a lot to the table, not just capturing a great sound, but helping us work out vocal melodies and layering.”
The album consists of six tracks, all but one clocking in at over seven minutes long. However, the songs on offer here are dynamic and diverse. The kind of songs that do not feel like seven-plus minute songs upon listening. ‘Tradewind’, the final track, being the strongest example of this. There is much depth and contrast encircling this album. The guitar tone on Jamie’s Gibson guitar fits the mood of the record perfectly. Vocally, Susie provides enough personality and heart in these tunes, it is hard not to take notice of her thaumaturgic delivery.
Highlights of the album include the slow burning opener, ‘Grit and Pearls’, which provides a satisfying sludgy introduction to the proceedings that follows along with a strong doom base. ‘Harold’ and ‘Reckon’ continue the magic with a more morose and surreal feel. Mesmerizing to say the least. Have I mentioned Susie’s vocals? Because they are certainly a high point on those tracks. The album closes strong with the much varied and absorbing “Tradewind” which brings all the elements from the previous tracks and encapsulates them all in one epic sounding dirge.
If I were to choose one phrase to describe this record, it would be “leaps and bounds”. Cohesiveness, chemistry, songwriting, production…it’s all there. Looking forward to what these guys have in store in the future. In the meantime, I’ll keep enjoying this Rooster ride.
MOONBOW War Bear: CD//DD Ripple Music Reviewed By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker
Kentucky’s Moonbow are a rather appropriately named band for sure. To understand that, first you must know about the Kentucky Moonbow, a naturally occurring wonder taking place at Cumberland Falls, KY. It is not an everyday sight but when conditions are right, within a few days of a full moon on a clear night, you can see it. A faint arc of multicolored lights that stretches from the base of the falls downstream to the boulders adorning the banks of the Cumberland River. The unforgettable experience of witnessing this event draws untold numbers of visitors to the region annually as they hope to witness this incredible event.
Another incredible event upon the horizon is the Kentucky-based band Moonbow issuing their third studio recording, ‘War Bear‘, via Ripple Musicon April 21st. Much like their namesake, the band provides an enlightening experience that bursts out from the darkness of mediocre music that permeates the rock realm at any given time. Once again comprised of vocalist Matt Bischoff, guitarist David McElfresh, bassist Ryan McAllister and drummer Steve Earle, the guys deliver a grizzly behemoth of hard rock with ‘War Bear‘.
The undeniable influence of Appalachian life and music both manifest themselves repeatedly throughout this new effort. Gargantuan, dense riffs reinforce songs such as the title track ‘War Bear‘, ‘Death Of Giants‘ and the backwoods blues of ‘Son Of Moses‘. One might state that this is something all to itself, perhaps Southern Grunge or Bluegrass Blues Rock or another moniker of minimal imagination. And yes, the music here most definitely is that but it is also much, much more. For instance, the groove-laden stomp of ‘Sword In The Storm‘ and its infectious sonics have “hit Single” written all it. With a bit of laid back swagger within its fantastic impact, the song features the boys’ grittiest, tight-knit playing.
There’s also moments of haunting psychedelia influencing cuts like ‘Bloodwash‘ but it is alternated with spans of powerful intensity. Earl’s drum work on the track is exceptionally tight and impressive on it, along with everyone’s fluid interaction within ‘Alone Eyes Roam‘. The quartet really ratchets up the energy and flow on ‘California King‘ along with a returning guest from their 2013 debut, The End Of Time, mister John Garcia himself. One of the strongest songs is the album closing ‘Toward The Sun‘, a heavy handed excursion that gave me some tingling sensations like those I rarely get from most music anymore. They’re the same visceral vibes that I acquired from hearing the aforementioned Moonbow debut and acoustic follow up, Volto del Demone in 2015.
I am beaming with pride (see what I did there) that my fellow Kentuckians, Moonbow, who are also one of the most refreshing, unique musical entities out there currently, are back. They are more than merely back really as they are back with something to say and something to play and it is a monolith of massive heavy rock. ‘War Bear‘ is a hungry animal ready for fierce action but it is my opinion that Moonbow have already won the day, and the battle too, with yet another magnificent display of Appalachian force.
RUFF MAJIK The Swan: CD//DD Bobbejaan Records Reviewed By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker
My friends from Pretoria, South Africa garage rock band Ruff Majik are back with the third installment of their planned EP trilogy. The 6-song ‘The Swan‘ is the end piece that follows previous offerings, The Bear and The Fox. If you have followed the progression of these releases then you already know what Johni Holliday (gtrst./vox/organist), Jimmy Glass (bass) and Benni Manchino (drums, percussion), aka Ruff Majik, are all about. Raw, blues-infused, psyche-tinted, fuzzened Stoner Rock with the emphasis on raw, stoner and rock, true believers. It seems as if the earlier releases were mere glimpses into the overall intention of these EPs and with ‘The Swan‘, it feels as if everything has now come full circle.
Allow me to inform you that Ruff Majik are as real as it gets on recordings, they don’t utilize any studio trickery like overdubs and countless takes. There’s no attention-stealing bells and whistles meant to distract you away from mediocre music like so many other bands incorporate into their releases. No sirree, not here for this trio does not need smoke and mirrors to discombobulate your senses. Instead, they deliver their sonic wares with boisterous musicality and it all begins with the retro rager, ‘Horse Drawn Wrath Spawn‘. Thick floppy riffs, amazing bass-driven rhythms and a slurry swagger exude from the speakers transmitting the tune. The guys immediately change musical gears with the doomy desert/fuzz rock of ‘Cloak Full Of Serpents‘. Bottom heavy psychedelia swirls around you while the kit-shattering drums drive things to and fro. It sets things up rather nicely for the next cut, ‘Canabasis‘, and its more energetically defined direction. A flurry of music possessing raw, unfiltered fierceness exudes into the room around you and the blistering guitar work will hold you in place as it does.
The end of of the previous track actually leads us headlong into the atmospherically-enhanced, melodic psyche of ‘Honey In A Lion Corpse‘. Rippling with desert rock traits and some really hypnotic tones, this throwback to the age of Kyuss is my favorite track by far. The grooves are magnetic and I swear you can feel sweat beads breaking on your brow from the energy being exerted here. Before you can catch your breath the dense, deep ruts of ‘Monarch Of The Hills‘ break like dawn on the mountaintop. Once again, the power of the rhythm section keep this song anchored in place, especially those massive bass lines. Things ratchet up into the red with the EP ending ‘Scalp Chiseler‘, a full-on foray into doomened blues. Bolstering things with ample enhancements are the subtle organs bubbling beneath the surface of the song, one which hits some dizzying moments at times before cooling down at others.
I have walked the walk with Ruff Majik through each of this trilogy’s EP releases and dare say that ‘The Swan‘ is the icing on the cake so to speak. It ties everything together in a way that should appeal to fans of undiluted garage rock that isn’t afraid to keep it true and to the point. You can listen to ‘The Swan‘ in the Bandcamp embed below and I highly recommend that you do, as well as check out its’ predecessors so that you can get the full intention of the trilogy.
Indianapolis-based entity of dark, heavily emotional musical density, Void King, have officially issued a new Single titled ‘Under The Tongue‘. The track was recently used as a grat track for contributors to the band’s European tour Kickstarter, something the band easily surpassed goal-wise. They shared their appreciation through the following statement saying:
“We hit that goal in less than six hours and more than tripled our goal by the end of the two weeks. It was crazy how much support folks showed. It was humbling to see how many people didn’t want merch; they just wanted to help us get overseas.”
‘Under The Tongue‘ is the prefect example of all the elements that make Void King such the incredible band they are. There are sludgier overtones in the massive riffs of guitarist Tommy Miller while the powerful vocals of Jason Kindred deliver the visceral rawness of an open wound. Keeping it all anchored in place and progressing are the rhythm section of bassist Chris Carroll and drummer Derek Felix with their solid interactions.
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.
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.
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!!
Pete August: Guitar
Vinnie Fiore: Drums
Jerry Jones: Vocals
Joe Laga: Guitar
Jesse Marianni: Bass, Keys
Hometown; New Jersey
Super Snake were Born in 2012 and were baptized in the waters of psyched-out post-whatever!! “Rock ‘n’ Roll Mind Control via a mouthful of psychedelics washed down with ten beers while listening to Black Sabbath and the dirtier parts of Sonic Youth. ”
This being the first full length release, opener and title track ‘Leap Of Love’ sets a pace for the album that those unaware of SUPER SNAKE will have a quick idea of what they are in for with this album. Super Snake has certain flavor the band describes as “…a Ouija board chopped up into little pieces, made into kindling, stuffed into your pipe.” This is pretty much what you get, from the first line about how ‘Sometimes they never get your name right…’ and PUNCH the double guitar assault hits and bowl is lit as the first break shifts to a dream/nightmare state as you follow the mix of cascading sounds swirling over each other until that double-six hits again. ‘Lie4U’ is the perfect 21st century anti-love song ripping forth with lyrics steeped in questioning and declaration like ‘I’d lie for you, even if you wouldn’t’ and a ghostly-mixed vocal rolling left and right as the solos whip back and forth to the end. ‘Hot Pavement’ begins with a measure of high bends and the rest hit after a measure, slower paced than we have been so far but still rolling along making your head bounce in time where ‘Spirit Cave’ has a 70’s wah-pedal rolling along with a stoner’s wet-dream of flow-along on this air stream vapor feel through the seven and a half minute ride along this tale of two. No break between, ‘Lavish Sum Of Dread’ comes in with a drum line filling the air as the perfect pace for this tale of a ‘Sunday thrill for one’ as described in what has become comfortable this voice that never quite fades out as it shifts speed and pitch. Standout ‘Sister Margaret’ wastes no time in the perfect headbanger 4/4 time signature with the mystic-sounding keys lilting between the melodies that keep winding around as so much smoke in a room surrounding the bodies bouncing along. ‘Dreamcoated’ give a quick four-click heads-up before it’s sonic blast rips the paint off the walls, ‘Too Late Who Cares’ instead is a full-on SONIC YOUTH/UNDERNEATH WHAT recipe of swirling lights melting into the walls and it makes sense. ‘Get Lost Be Mine’ has a blues-fueled bounce while ‘Cecelia’ reeks of Mississippi mud with the chugging single guitar jag. ‘Big Seize’ has a cleaner guitar tone that we tend to hear a lot out of New jersey but with a punch that is often lacking for whatever reason, switching to pure crunch across all strings as we slide onto a stellar solo that bridges the mid section across to the screams that come in and grab the frontal cortex while the drummer kicks into overdrive and everything is back to swirling together. Next enters ‘Take My Breath’ kicks in in true psychedelic bliss, clouds of varying colors circling like so much bong smoke to the end showing a band that is ready to make a stand and have accomplished their goal with this record.
Super Snake in a live setting would have to be insane if they can deliver the intensity of each song on this record and I have no doubt that they can and MORE… buy the album, support the live venues and let’s get these guys to your town and mine!!
Argonauta Records – Release Date: Digital album releases February 27, 2017 /
Physical Album Ships around March 10, 2017
Ship: Void Cruiser mod.1.0 (Interstellar heavy metal exploration vessel)
Last known location: The Andromeda galaxy
CREW – T-Hug: Low Frequency Engine, Ambience Generator
V-Salo: Soundscape Systems
T-Bag: Battering Apparatus
S-Salo: Fuzz Machinery, Communications
Post: Void Cruiser has always been there. Only now the crew have awakened from their cryogenic sleep and they are on a holy quest. A quest for The Massive Resonance. This is how we begin…
And so is how my introduction to VOID CRUISER began. I discovered that this is the third release, the first being 2013’s EP ‘Motherload’ followed in 2015 with the full length “Overstaying My Welcome” and now in 2017 we are gifted with “Wayfarer,” a seven song collection of pure stoner-metal bliss; fuzzed out bass lines, staggered tempo’s and fills running amok with searing, soaring guitar solos that perpetuate every minute that has no other voice voiced communications. Grab your vaporizer/pipe/bong/etc. as we travel along with this mod 1.0 vessel.
‘A Day In Which No Man Was Born’ serves as the lift-off and slowly takes you through the entry of the edge of this sector as the background becomes the majesty that is the interwoven expansive net that is propelling you into the unknown ahead with no apprehension. Instead anticipation as the power chord driven final section of this track shifts as you can almost feel the turning of this vessel which effortlessly flows to the next track ‘I Didn’t Lie, But Know Now I Should Have.’ The band swings right into a blues-tempo’d, doom-slow and low tale of Salo speaking of the “voice” inside of him, letting us see through his eyes what is transpiring within and why he knows why he should have. As the last note rings out, we suddenly hear footsteps and a quick staccato snare pulls us into ‘As We Speak’ where we are told that we will ‘hear with your eyes and see with your ears’ as if he could reach you. Electronic sputters lead us right into the power chord beginning of ‘Madonnas And whores’ where Salo tells us that when he was all alone, in his own narcissistic way, all he could feel was love for everything. Now that he is willing in his own altruistic way, all he can feel is just jealousy as he further exposes the events of the ‘looking for comfort’ and there is no way it’s gonna fall. At the four minute mark, we begin the turnaround portion of this leg of the journey with the tastiest guitar section this record has offered up so far and filled the void around this spinning vessel perfectly carrying you though the ectoplasmic expansion that surrounds you outside until you are told that the ship has been taken over.
‘Seven Years Late’ is a tale of Salo speaking of ‘your heart of gold, my heart of steel’ and his careening vocal carries you further long. telling of a dream he had, saw his grave, seven years late. Faster footsteps, a coughing man and ‘All Over Nowhere’ begins that Salo is ‘The man that helped you, he’s the man that stabbed your back…’ and then asked if ‘you’re having a good time baby’ with the same monotone sneer you would expect from somebody that tells you he knows for sure that you ‘go around.’ Perfectly accentuated at the end with the same running footsteps at the beginning before final track ‘Maailmann Kallien Kaupunki’ which per a translator means ‘The most expensive House’ which leads me to imagine some spectral equivalent of The House of Heaven or some such. Speaking no Finnish, I can not be positive, but the music of this 10-minute soliloquy gave me a feeling of bliss that carried to the very end as the very last faded out through a backdrop of white noise that seemed endless until it was no more…
Compared to the previous releases, VOID CRUISER have come a long way with “Wayfarer” and have grown not only as a unit, but as a concept and they have executed the concept quite well here. If given the opportunity, I encourage you, the reader, to find their tour schedule and get out and see how this outstanding studio effort is translated to a live forum. We can not recommend this album enough…