Boss Keloid “Melted on the Inch” Review + Stream…

Boss Keloid

Melted on the Inch – CD // DD // Vinyl

Holy Roar Records / Black Bow Records – released April 27, 2018

Reviewed by Zachary “+Norway+” Turner

 

Lineup:
Paul Swarbrick | Guitar
Alex Hurst | Vocals and Guitar
Ste Arands | Drums and Percussion
Matthew Milne | Keyboards
Liam Pendlebury-Green | Bass

Tracklist:
Chronosiam        07:14
Tarku Shavel       07:14
Peykruve              07:02
Jromalih              07:51
Lokannok            05:24
Griffonbrass       05:59

 

 

Review:

Boss Keloid are a Progressive/Groove Metal band from Wigan, UK and have been active since 2010. For me this release held a lot of mystery when I first received it. Looking at the cover I was not expecting what I got. I thought the album was going to be either an Art Rock or a Power Pop record. (and boy was I in for a shock when I started listening to the album.)

As with most prog bands, tempo is played with and changes a bunch. The first track is a great example of that. The band likes to play with different genres as well. A good chunk of the album is Metal while hints and parts of other’s types of music are overlaid and played in between parts of the songs.

The titles to these songs are in some fantasy like language and I cannot seem to find a translation or where they came from.

The vocalist has a pretty good range, if I wasn’t paying as much attention I would think there were at least two singers. At a few moments he reminds me of David from Disturbed, but with more range. The band hold their own as a unit; no one seems to be trying to outdo the other.

Live Band Shot 2

Three of the tracks are over 7 minutes long and the others are both 5 minutes long, with and while listening I never got bored or tired. The band go all over the musical board and, even though it sometimes gets a little messy (in terms of meshing genres, like in the beginning of Tarku Shavel) it never sounds bad.

Overarching album review:

Here is where I’d break down each track and give a brief synopsis of each. For this album I feel it will get redundant after the second track; so instead I will give a highlights version.

Boss Keloid sound great and, for the most part, blend elements of rock, world, progressive, and metal together really well. The lyrics are interesting and the delivery is executed good as well. The playing by the band never seems to be sloppy. Every song seems to be a part of one bigger song or jam session(s). Alternatively the album sounds like it is one big song. So no song in particular sticks out to me. That is not a bad thing or a dig at the band. This album sounds great and is a solid album.

If you enjoy more soundscape-y albums with progressive music, heavy rock and well written lyrics you should check out Boss Keloid and “Melted on the Inch”!   Top Year End Contender!

Band Logo

 

 


Sergeant Thunderhoof “Terra Solus” Album Review + Stream + Video…

Sergeant Thunderhoof

Terra Solus – Limited Vinyl // CD // DD

Released May 12, 2018

Reviewed by Eric Layhe

 

Tracklist:
Another Plane (8:35)
Stellar Gate Drive (5:41)
The Tree and the Serpent (6:01)
B Oscillation (6:59)
Diesel Breath (7:35)
Priestess of Misery (6:24)
Half a Man (4:07)
Om Shaantih (6:00)

 

 

Review:

Sergeant Thunderhoof is a group of unsung metal heroes from England specializing in stoner metal.  In May of 2018 following a successful kickstarter campaign, Sergeant Thunderhoof have graced us with their third full-length album Terra Solus and I am happy to say that it does not disappoint.

Stylistically, Terra Solus is about what would be expected of them, boasting a heavy yet melodic variety of stoner metal tinged with a healthy dosage of psychedelia. The album begins with tribal drums and a huge guitar riff in “Another Plane”. Eventually, the vocals enter, showing a marked improvement over their previous album, Ride of the Hoof. On Terra Solus, the melodic vocals of Dan Flitcroft are clearer, crisper, and more confident, showing great maturation of their band.

Band Pic

The production is also much cleaner, resulting in a great sound quality. Each instrument is heard with crystal clarity throughout the whole album and it is a joy to listen to. In addition, Terra Solus is sequenced fantastically- it’s almost as though the album has a complete story arc.

The album also has insane solos and riffs to spare. Guitarist Mark Sayer is really playing his instrument for all it’s worth. There are a ton of great guitar parts straight out of the gate, and the band’s rhythm section gives every song on the album a fantastic groundwork.

All in all, Terra Solus is an absolute killer of an album from beginning to end. It has groove and attitude to spare, and it’s a crime that three albums in Sergeant Thunderhoof still hasn’t gained a foothold. I highly recommend that you check out this album and Sergeant Thunderhoof’s entire backlog if you’re interested in Stoner Metal. Now if only there was a time machine in order to go back and “back” the Kickstarter project…


Sound of Origin “Seeds of the Past” Album Review + Stream…

Sound of Origin

Seeds of the Past – CD // DD

Self Released – July 8, 2017

Reviewed by Terry “The Ancient One” Cuyler

 

Track Listing:
1. Warfarin 07:39
2. Driven to Distraction 05:14
3. Left For Dead 05:38
4. Seeds of the Past 06:17
5. Asphalt 08:57

 

Hey tasters this is The Ancient One. On the musical menu today are 4 heavy fuzzy psychedelic rockers from Huddersfield, UK. When I first listened to their EP  Seeds of the Past I really didn’t know what to make of them. When their 1st track ‘Warfarin’ started out sounding like it was recorded on a old fashioned tape recorder in a garage. Still they had the courage to put music on Bandcamp and ask others to listen so I listened on.

 

Pro Band Pic Color

 

As I sat listening the sound quickly improved and I realized it was an audio effect. What the music reminded of was the Misfits who fearlessly self produced albums on the cheap that they then sold at bargain basement prices. And at other times I was reminded of Faith No More. With vocal powerhouse John Bussey, the rafters rattling drum beats of Chris ‘Foz’ Foster along with  Jax Townend’s floor shaking bass and Joe ‘Zeph’ Wilczynski fuzzed out psychedelic riffs, Sound of Origin is not a band to be overlooked.

 

 

Some of my favorites on “Seeds of the Past” are ‘Driven to Distraction’ with it’s heavy drum and bass laid down by Foz and Jax.  In  ‘Left For Dead’  John Bussey’s vocal ability shines through with  Zeph’s fuzzy psychedelic guitar. I’m going to keep my eyes open for any future releases by Sound of Origin. If you like this EP you can get it at “NYP” on their Bandcamp page (above) and if you choose to pay nothing show them some love by following them on Bandcamp and giving them a like on Facebook. And while your at it come on over to Taste Nation and give us a like.

Band Logo

 


Clan “Carnivores” Album Review + Stream…

“Eat ‘M’ Alive!”

Clan

Carnivores – Digital Download

Self Released – June 19, 2017

Reviewed by Terry “The Ancient One” Cuyler

 

Hey all I got some music for you all to Rock ‘n’ Roll all night to from a power trio of rockers out of the UK’s Norwich calling themselves Clan. It’s been awhile since I last heard about Clan , but Matt , Ben, and Matt haven’t been just laying about. Since 2013 when they released their “Self Titled” EP, Clan has been hard at work.  They released a highly acclaimed sophomore album in 2014 called Witchcraft available in physical formats on Kozmik Artifactz Records.  On April 2017 they released a single Haunt Your Ghost as a teaser to get us all amped up for Carnivores.

I first heard Clan back in 2013 and instantly found myself singing along to their righteous rock/doom/blues sound like I had been listening to them for years and the feeling was no different when I gave Carnivores a spin. Since their S/T EP and Witchcraft album it seems to me Clan has grown musically.

Rather than rush to create their 3rd album or make up for a lack of material by potting previously released tracks on it as was done on Witchcraft the band took its time with Carnivores and gave fans a 10 song album of all new material. I have also noticed a slight change in sound as the songs are less bouncy and have a more heavy blues feel. Overall the album seems to have a dark theme about how people prey on one another; providing relevance to the album name.

 

Pro Band Pic
Clan: Left to Right – Ben Giller(Drums), Matt Rabong(Bass), and Matt Pearce(Guitar & Vocals)

A band with a versatile sound in a live show I think Clan would go over just as well with the Black Keys audiences as it would with Bikers, Wolfmother and those that attend the Maryland Doom Fest. What can I say Clan is just good Rock ‘n’ Roll. My favorites from Carnivores are ‘Burning,’ ‘Bodies Jackal,’ ‘Haunt Your Ghost,’ ‘True Believer,’ ‘Sleep In Salt,’ and ‘White Spider.’  This album is slammed with killer hits!!  If your looking for kick ass rock then Clan might be what you were looking for.


Dark Matter “Wood Lane” – Album Review & Stream…

Dark Matter

Wood Lane – CD // DD

Self Released:  March 30, 2017

Reviewed by Santiago “Chags” Gutierrez

 

Dark Matter is “heavily influenced by 70s downer rock and obscure prog.” That’s the description on their Bandcamp page. Apt summary for sure, but there is much more going on here than just 70s prog. Once you scratch that surface, you will find their sound also borrows from the doom, space, and psych/acid genres as well. Think Black Sabbath and Hawkwind to go along with that 70s downer rock tag, and you’re in the ballpark as far as pinning down their sound.

Band Pic

 

Wood Lane is Dark Matter’s second effort. Whereas their debut was completely recorded by Dave Gilbert, he has enlisted the services of Gandalf’s Fist’s drummer, Stefan Hepe on this one. The addition of Hepe has only served to enhance the overall sound and atmosphere Dave is attempting to create with his compositions. Thematically, this album runs the gamut of religion (‘The Truth is Out There’ and ‘March Out to the Sun’), technology (‘Four Walled World’), Witches (‘Down in the Valley’), and loss (“Wood Lane”).  Unquestionably, a diverse lyrical tapestry is woven throughout.

 

Promo Kit

 

‘King of Colours’ and ‘The Truth is Out There’ open the album with a space rock/acid feel. ‘Four Walled World’ touches upon the dangers of letting technology take over your life. This is the third track on the album and the first where you truly start to see that early Black Sabbath influence—especially towards the tail end of the song. “Wood Lane” is well placed midway through the record and serves the purpose of giving the album a welcomed change of pace with its laid back psychedelic sounds. Lyrically, this song will make you contemplate life as you know it with its deep and emotional theme.  As the song suggests, “it’s a lonely place.” The Sabbath influence makes a more obvious return on ‘Down in the Valley’, and the final track, ‘March Out to the Sun,’ boasts a riff that would be more than comfortable fitting in on any doom record.

This is a strong second effort from Dark Matter. The album is cohesive and dynamic and the songs are structured in a way that make them memorable.  Gilbert’s vocals fit the overall mood of the record, however, a more varied vocal delivery may have made some of these songs that much more memorable. Minor gripe when considering how well this album embraces the feel of classic 70s proto doom and space rock. Looking forward to what they come up with next.


Album Review – Bad Guys “No More Mr. Bad Guy”

BAD GUYS 

No More Mr Bad Guy – Release date: February 2, 2017

Label: Hominid Sounds – Cassette / DD

 

“Formed through a mutual desire to play some rock music that’s not had the life squeezed out of it by some kind of poo-faced academic mangler, they make the heavy stuff and they play it loud, the way it should be.” To further quote the band, the BAD GUYS are self-described as “A midlander, a southerner, a Canadian and a Hungarian with double necks, double kicks and no mic stand. Long hair, grey hair, bald-heads and beards.” Still not intrigued? Read on…

From all accounts this is the fifth/sixth and final (??) release, depending on the source, and is the epitome of what they set out to do as early as 2010, the earliest year of release I found. Clocking in at 26 minutes, there is more packed into this release than just about anything recent at double the length and serves as the perfect bookend of everything they have done up to this point.

 

Last Show Pic of Band

 

Starting off with a HIGH ON FIRE sounding drum intro before the feedback squeals keen on until the first power chord hits at 30 seconds in and you are already moving in time to the forward push through the sludge-heavy rhythm line until this tale of looming doom begins, ‘Ekranoplan’ sets the tone…BRUTAL. You better get moving or you will get your ass kicked. ‘Cordyceps’ starts off a little slower, but… wait for it… right back in your face at 200 percent with no sign of relenting.

‘Dickhed For Love’ is a modern love song as only BAD GUYS could tell it, complete with warbling solos that trips back and forth behind the self-efacing chorus.

‘Boiled Head’ is by far the one that grabbed me by the throat with the over-fuzzed everything mixed with the distorted spoken word laced with a triple dose of doom before the pounding gallop along this black road of terror. “Nothing left of you now, just a…” MC5 guitar-tones screaming in the background as you hear “Forever…” before the final fade out.

Last track and the quintessential ‘stoner’ song clocking in at exactly 4:20 is a ‘true-story or three’ as some of us can certainly testify, but would prefer not to *cough cough* and shows a supreme advancement in musicianship during the body of the entire song and the soloing particularly during the last minute plus. Would be a shame for there to not be more from the BAD GUYS, but IF not, perfect exit… stage right.

 

Band on Horse

 

Thanks to Bad Guys for 6 years of Rock ‘n Roll Bliss!!  May the Wind at Your Back be Your Own as you ride off into the Sunset or the nearest Brothel!!  Much love from Taste Nation!!

Words by Ric “Sui-Syko” Dorr


Album Review – Crippled Black Phoenix “Bronze”

Crippled Black Phoenix

Bronze – Vinyl / CD / DD

Season of Mist – Released: April 11, 2016

 

So how often can a drummer for one(or two) already established and killer band break away and do something that is unexpected, something unique and able to stand on it’s own two feet? Not often. Hell I can’t think of anyone besides Dave Grohl or Phil Collins, who have pulled it off successfully. Well now we have Justin Greaves, skin beater for Electric Wizard and Iron Monkey, who with his project Crippled Black Phoenix, have created in their latest album ‘Bronze’ what can be considered a contemporary exploration of mood and atmosphere.

 

Cool Band Pic
This is no collection of 3 minute dittys designed for ass shaking, no, this is an album that demands your time and attention. An album not to be taken lightly, it makes you want to experience it as a whole, even though it works song to song as well. Hearkening back to some of the most relevant bands and albums of the early to mid seventies, this UK Octet, crafts some of the most passionate melancholic, psychedelic stoner-prog found this side of the moon. They succeed at pulling you in to their world, a world this is terminally overcast, and weary, but a world not without emotion and, dare I say love?  Listening to this I hear Pink Floyd, I hear The Cure, I hear Muse, I hear King Crimson, I hear Mogwai. And it works. All of it.

 

I especially love the places where they take musical chances, like on the album opener which is an orchestral instrumental track led off by a passage from the beginning of Genesis. Another chance was taken with the song ‘Scared and Alone’ employing a horn section to accentuate the tired and troubled lead vocals provided by Belinda Kordic, who shines in the singular track that she takes lead vocals on. All the other tracks are sung by Daniel Anghede who at times is reminiscent of 80’s post-rock goth progenitor Peter Murphy with his deep baritone voice and delivery.

 

LIVE Band Shot_Cool

 

My favorite track on the album comes in the 7th slot titled ‘Turn to Stone’. It is a paean to every great rock song written in the Seventies, with it’s mid to slow tempo march, infectious main riff that makes you bob your head, and it’s psychedelic guitar nuances, emphasized by a vocal delivery that’s half Robert Plant half Neil young. The later part of the song is a ride out on the bridge riff, proving that there is beauty in repetition.

Elsewhere throughout the album you will find hints of organ, synthesizer and other non-standard instruments placed tastefully for maximum affect, enhancing and emphasizing the masterful songwriting.  The end result being an artful, moody collection of contemporary prog-rock songs with heart that shines brightly in a musical landscape that is all too often more of the same.

Words by Mark Aceves