Monday, 24 July 2017

Blues Funeral - Awakening (Album Review)


Release date: August 25th 2017. Label: Self Released. Format: CD/DD

Awakening – Tracklisting

Shadow Of The Snake
Awakening
Illusions Of Reality
Firedrake
Casimir
The Gathering Dust

Band Members

Jan Kimmel (El Janni) - Guitar, Nord, Vocals;
Maurice Eggenschwiler - Guitar, Vocals;
Cory Cousins - Drums;
Gabriel Katz - Bass

Review

Blues Funeral new album - Awakening - is better structured and more focused than their debut album. Their debut album was all over the place but in a good way, as the band included as many different genres they could possibly lay their hands on. Awakening doesn't follow that approach as Blues Funeral opt for a more straight-forward seventies sounding Blues Rock/Psych/Heavy Metal sound.

There are still moments of stoner/doom metal riffs appearing throughout the album. Though this time Blues Funeral seemed to have settled on a more Deep Purple based sound. The lyrics are still way over the top but that's what you expect from an album such as this.

Opening track - Shadow Of The Snake - has a slight operatic and progressive rock feel with the band playing some cool heavy riffs from the start. The organs add a creepy and doom based psychedelic feel. The dual vocals Jan and Maurice add quite a classic heavy metal feel. Blues Funeral feel they grew up and influenced by a steady diet of classic seventies Hard Rock/Metal and the album is a testament to that love and knowledge of that era of classic music.

The rest of the album follows the same approach of Blues/Prog Rock driven melodic riffs being the centre stage of the whole album. You can expect epic guitar solos, OTT vocals and gloomy organs all combining for a brilliantly entertaining ride from start to finish. Songs such as Awakening, Illusions Of Reality, Casimir and The Gathering Dust all play to Blues Funeral strengths with prog rock solos that have passion, drive and determination not seen on their debut album.

The standout track has on the album has to be Firedrake as the superb vocals grab your attention from the start. The band slow the mood right down and that means you can immerse yourself with the doomy theatrical vibes being played around you.

I will admit I would like to hear more modern based sounds that their debut album included. Now, at least Blues Funeral know what kind of band they want to be and they excel in delivering good old fashioned Hard Rock/Metal with flourishes of classic Doom Metal holding everything together. The production is handled superbly well with the album striking the right balance between the quieter and louder parts of the album.

Awakening is a superb album and Blues Funeral should have no trouble in finding a dedicated audience within the Hard Rock/Classic Rock/Heavy Metal community.

Words by Steve Howe
Links:

Astrosaur - Fade In // Space Out (Album Review)


Release date: April 28th 2017. Label: Bad Vibes. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Fade In // Space Out – Tracklisting

1.Necronauts 11:00
2.Space Mountain 06:10
3.Yugen 04:48
4.Fishing for Kraken 09:29
5.Fade In // Space Out 13:30

Band Members

Eirik Kråkenes: guitar
Steinar Glas: bass
Jonatan Eikum: drums

Review

Astrosaur's debut album Fade In // Space Out is a very pleasant surprise indeed. As the album is made up of different sounds such as Space Rock, Stoner Rock, Psych, Doom Metal and a subtle hint of heavy progressive jazz. Add all these elements together and you end up with an intriguing sound that defies the normal genre conventions.

Opening track – Necronauts – is a heavy spaced out exercise in noisy doomed out jazz theatrics. The song has quite a diverse LOUD vs QUIET approach. As the band try many different ideas and sounds with their music. For the most part it sounds very good indeed. For other the song could have been more redefined. Though you cannot ignore how supremely talented the band actually is.

The rest of the album follows the same formula that the opening track confidently creates with songs such as: Space Mountain, Yugen and Fade In // Space Out impressing the most on the album. Astrosaur don't stick to one conventional sound as they try their hand at different sounds and genres on each of the songs. The album truly comes alive when they play a more straight-forward psychedelic doom/stoner rock sound.

The progressive jazz vibes may put some people off but it's good to hear and experience something different within the realm of Instrumental Rock/Metal. Fans of Monomyth and Shooting Guns will find much to enjoy here. The production of the album is immense with the different sounds and experimental noises making their presence known throughout the album.

Fade In // Space Out is a fantastic debut album. Though it's not the most easiest album to listen to. Give yourself a few listens to fully appreciate this album and you will have one hell of a wild ride.....

Words by Steve Howe
Links:

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Shooting Guns - Flavour Country (Album Review)


Release date: August 11th 2017. Label: RidingEasy Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Flavour Country – Tracklisting

1.Ride Free
2.French Safe
3.Beltwhip Snakecharmer
4.Vampires of Industry
5.Flavour Country
6.Black Leather Jacket

Band Members

Keef
Laramee
Jay Loos
Jim Ginther
Toby Bond
Zach Low
Brennan Barclay

Review

After long long time, I return to talk about music. And I could do it in the best way!

Today I’m talking about the new superb album from Shooting Guns, Flavour Country (Riding Easy Records). This powerful sextet from Saskatoon, SK, in the heart of the Canadian prairies come back with a stunning new album, mastered by John McBain (ex-Monster Magnet, Carlton Melton).

As in their previous releases, Shooting Guns have the ability to manage very different styles, in a perfectly mix between stoner, hard and kraut-rock. In their sophomore LP, Brotherhood Of The Ram (Riding Easy Records), the band gave us a very slow collection of songs with a huge stoner influence, full of edgy and fuzzy riffs. In Flavour Country, the atmospheres are sometimes more dull, melancholic and dilated, representing the perfect soundtrack for a journey into the immense open spaces.

The opener, Ride Free, starts with an heavy riff halfway between Steppenwolf and Hawkwind, followed by the psychedelic ride of French Safe, where the speed of the song is contrasted with the wise use of synths, colouring the song of a cinematic vein.

Beltwhip Snakecharmer is a song where the Sabbath-oriented riff at the beginning leaves the step to more ethereal atmospheres closely remind me to Harvestman, which anticipate the next song, Vampire Industry. The title track, Flavour Country and, mostly, Black Leather Jacket are the heaviest part of the album, representing the perfect closure, with their Sabbath-styled doom riffery, seasoned by heavy pulse-riding psychedelia.

The kraut-rock and film-character of the band feels very much in this release and permeates almost the entire duration of the album. It’s a very surprising album that leaves nothing for granted and never bores, a feature this is not a discount for those who make instrumental music their own style.

There is no more to say, with Flavour Country, Shooting Guns take us on a beautiful journey through a wide spectrum of sound, where any of us will love to lose ourselves. Highly recommended.

Words by Bruno Bellisario
Thanks to Dave at US/THEM PR for the promo. Flavour Country will be available to buy on CD/DD/VInyl from August 11th 2017 via RidingEasy Records
Links:


Mammoth Salmon - Magnetic Fields Of Radiant Light (Album Review)


Release date: July 14th 2017. Label: Self Released. Format: DD

Magnetic Fields Of Radiant Light – Tracklisting

1.Apotheosis 07:08
2.Mortals 08:26
3.Maelstrom of Discontent 07:47
4.Black Moon Ritual 07:40
5.Magnetic Fields of Radiant Light 08:47

Band Members

Paul Dudziak- vocals, guitars
Matt Howl-bass
Chad Walter-drums

Review

Portland Sludge/Stoner Rockers – Mammoth Salmon – make a welcome return with their epic new album – Magnetic Fields Of Radiant Light. Two years have passed since the band released their last album and the guys have returned in spectacular fashion. With five heavy sounding sludge/stoner rock songs that have a more doomed and spaced out feel.

Opening track – Apotheosis – has a classic heavy metal feel with Paul's vocals adapting a more heavy metal approach compared to previous albums. The riffs have been given a slight doom/psychedelic makeover as Mammoth Salmon's earlier sounds have become heavier and emotionally distant at times. The psychedelic noises add a harsh sound to the overall tone of the album. It may take some time getting used to but the band are playing some heavily tuned out devilish riffs.

Second track – Mortals – carries on the twisted Sludge/Stoner/Doom Rock sound with the band opening the song with a slowly played riff. Shades of Sabbath can be felt as the band adapt a more Blues Rock approach to their music. It's a slowly played track with violent outbursts of Sludge/Stoner Metal riffs to keep the die-hard metalheads fully entertained.

The other three tracks on the album – Maelstrom Of Discontent, Black Moon Ritual and Magnetic Fields Of Radiant Light – all carry on the dark and twisted doomed out riffs that Mammath Salmon expertly create. The down-tuned Sludge/Stoner Metal sounds is played to full effect as the band fully explore their Doom Metal identity compared to previous albums. Paul's vocals are more adventurous with shades of NWOBHM making a welcome appearance.

The standout song is the epic title track which captures everything we love about Mammoth Salmon. Heavy sounds and more outlandish vocals from Paul with stunning support from Matt and Chris on bass and drums respectively. The song does move from different genres too many times for my liking but the song contains my favourite moments of the album. Distorted sludge sounds with a nightmarish feel that will leave the listener pressing play one more time and listening this album from the very start, over and over again.

Magnetic Fields Of Radiant Light is another superb album from Mammoth Salmon and one that proves why these guys are so highly thought of.

Words by Steve Howe
Links:


Petyr - S/T (Album Review)


Release date: May 1st 2017. Label: Outer Battery Records. Format: CD/DD/Music

Petyr – S/T – Tracklisting

1.Texas Igloo 08:02
2.Middle Room 00:24
3.Stairway to Attic 02:56
4.Satori III 06:31
5.Old and Creepy 04:40
6.Kraft 04:18
7.Three to Five 05:31
8.Vambo/Buffalo Stampede 06:50

Review

San Diego Psych/Skate/Stoner/Acid Rockers – Petyr – have created an almighty spaced out rock album for their debut record. Running under 40 minutes, Petyr create a whirlwind of different spaced out jammed based noises that takes influence from Earthless and Black Sabbath in many ways. The opening track – Texas Igloo – is drenched in classic sounding Acid Rock vibes with the band paying a nod to Monster Magnet at times especially with the vocals sounding like a younger and more hungrier Dave Wyndorf. Though Petyr still manage to create their own addictive hallucinogenic sound.

The band play fast and loose with the rules of Psychedelic/Stoner Rock as the band throw many different sounds into the mix and that the makes the band very hard to describe. Songs such as Stairway To Attic, Satori III, Old and Creepy, Three To Five and the excellent final track Vambo/Buffalo Stampede all prove that Petyr are perhaps on a different level to other upcoming Psychedelic/Stoner Rock bands as they create music that holds your attention with loud swirls of psychedelic riffs that are immersed with cool lyrics and vocals to match.

The production on the album is masterfully produced as the sound is fantastic throughout with each different level of fuzz, psych, stoner and acid rock grooves all culminating in a loud bombastic sound. This is an album that feels perfectly right at home in both the classic sounds 70s Psych/Stoner/Hard Rock and the more modern Psych/Acid Rock revival currently appearing.

The other standout element of this album is Petyr's keen willingness to experiment with their sound and include heavier elements of music such as Thrash and Punk but still staying true to their Skate/Psychedelic roots.

Petyr may not be the finished article yet but this album could be the launchpad for bigger and better things for the band. On this form, the band deserve all the accolades and rewards coming their way.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe
Links:


Introducing - KATHY REEVES PRODUCTION

Let me introduce you Kathy Reeves. She's done an incredible amount of freelance work for a number of bands in the Doom genre and it seems only fitting that she gets credit... and also so that other bands who might be in need of a creative resource, could come to her.

That’s her honour list:


VIDEOS:

WAR INJUN - New Ink, WAR INJUN - Quest For Fire, WAR INJUN - Patience and a Shovel, WAR INJUN - Ghost dance

IRON MAN - Ruler of Ruin

PLACE OF SKULLS - With Vision

EARTHRIDE - Hacksaw Eyeball, EARTHRIDE - Fighting the Devils, EARTHRIDE - Weakend
Hank Williams III - Ghost to a Ghost

Gorgantherron - Cemetery Shoes, Gorgantherron - Lost in Space

Zaius - Mistress Marjery

Blood Farmers - Orgy of the Rats

Pale Divine - The Prophet,

Pale Divine - Black Coven

Victor Griffin's IN~GRAVED - Late For An Early Grave

BEELZEFUZZ - All the Feeling Returns

PROMOS:

Beelzefuzz album promos 2013 & 2016
Eric Wagner's BLACKFINGER debut album promo
Days of the Doomed Festival Promo teasers 2012-2014
Delainie Simpson Benefit promo's 2012 & 2013
SHOD 2013 promo
Vultures of Volume Festival 2014 & 2015 promos

PHOTOGRAPHY

Pale Divine promo photography
Beelzefuzz promo photography

T-Shirt design
Pale Divine
Spillage
Days of the Doomed fest 2014

ALBUM DESIGN & LAYOUT
SPILLAGE s/t
BAND LOGO DESIGN
SPILLAGE
Never The Sun




MISC

Creator and host of Vultures of Volume fest

Feel free to contact Kathy through:

Watch her videos here:

Words by Aleks Evdokimov.

Photos used by kind permission of Kathy Reeves.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Diesel King - #GOFUCKYOURSELVES (EP Review)


Release date: June 23rd 2017. Label: APF Records. Format: CD/DD

#GOFUCKYOURSELVES – Tracklisting

1.Declaration 03:46
2.Cut The Cord 03:58
3.Skin Graft 03:03
4.Bonus Track 05:11

Band Members

Mark O'Regan - Vocals
Geoff Foden - Guitar
Aled Marc - Guitar
Will Wichanski - Bass
Bill Jacobs - Drums

Review

It's new Diesel King.

I fucking LOVE Diesel King

Honestly.

They're my favourite band I'm not in.

Three original tracks and a Phil Collins cover.

What's not to love?

10/10...

Now #GoFuckYourselves.

Words by Simon Ross Williams
Links: