Saturday, March 30, 2013


Right, remember Valley Of The Sun? It's been a while, granted, but the guys are at it again and have been working their nuts off on new material and once again are looking towards crowd sourcing to get the new album pressed on vinyl. We helped them out before and dammit, we're doing it again! If you wanna contribute to a worthy cause and get something out of it too, head on over to their page and help get Electric Talons Of The Thunderhawk made.

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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tsar You Feelin' The Fuzz?...

Tsar Bomba - Silent Queen (2013)

The opening track from this Silent Queen really does perfectly set the tone and feel for the rest of this album in more ways that one. Mainly because when you begin listening you go, "Jesus f**kin' Christ, they're giving this away!?". Yup, no word of a lie, this Parisian trio are asking for absolutely bugger all in return for this absolute belter of a debut! It truly is something quite special.
If you were to take Kyuss in their heyday, and exchange their weed with coke I reckon there would have been a damn good chance they'd have ended up like this. A sort of desert rock Pantera, complete with elements of 90's grunge and a massive dose of fuzz. But the kicker is that its not just chock full of that recognisable desert groove and hauntingly trippy Homme esque lead breaks but that it's all met with a real gut wrenching metal vocal. A vocal which, somehow, manages to fleet between Eddie Vedder and Phil Anselmo within the blink of an eye. It's partly baffling at times, because it feels so surprising in places, but there's not a single second where it doesn't feel wholly satisfying. I don't know how Ced's pulled it off, but it fits in perfectly and works wonders over Fab's crushing fret work. All of which is backed by a drum and bass combo that screams of classic doom. Needless to say everything gels together seamlessly. Whats more, the guys seem to hit the jackpot and have managed to achieve a real tightness that some bands still desperately strive for after a decades worth of albums, EP's and live shows. If this is the end product of just 18 months together then goddamn, I can't wait for the next album. Thats all providing that they've still got a few riff's up their sleeve and don't crack under the pressure of setting the bar so high for album number two. If thats the case then Tsar Bomba are going to be utterly unstoppable in the future.
Easily one of the most impressive releases we've been sent this year, debut albums rarely get better than this.
~ Jay

For Fans Of; Alabama Thunderpussy, Black Pyramid, Pet The Preacher, Zodiac, Black Cowgirl


Monday, March 25, 2013

Souled Out...

Souls For Sale - Scavengers (2013)
Now, hardcore throughout its violently rapid rise to fame has taken on a variety of guises and therefore sprouted off and crossed boundaries with many other genres and sub-genres. All of which have picked up their little nuances and signatures along route and all of which somewhat fail to particularly thrill me. Ok, that may be a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, so I'll revise. Most of which, fail to thrill me. Sure, a few chosen morsels have slipped through the cracks and landed in my collection, but for the best part the genre as a whole kinda eludes me. Well, the post-punk side predominantly. I think it may be down to all that bloody dancing. I dunno. But like I said, a small select few have always won my approval; Converge, (early) Norma Jean, Unsane, Refused... Mainly, all those that could wield a certain groove, or at least were less discordant that the bulk of their companions. But the genre has always been a mixed bag and varied not just from country to country but from city to city. As a result the boundaries between the genres has become more and more blurred, and no better example is right here with Germany's Souls For Sale.
With all the yield of a nuclear explosion SFS seem to take the best elements of whatever style happens to be flying by them at the time and make it their very own. Be it Slayer like thrash, Melvins esque break downs or a vocal more akin to Chariots, it doesn't matter, these guys can make it work. But it doesn't stop there, with elements that also float in and out of post rock, sludge and doom it's nigh on impossible to really categorise this album, it just feels too varied. With many bands that can often serve as an inevitable downfall for an album, with the final product becoming little more than a confused, disjoined mess. Not here. Even with the occasional presence of samples and the old pinch harmonic, the Scavengers fits and fuses together seamlessly, creating one big ass slab of crushing, unforgiving hardcore metal that sits somewhere between Old Man Gloom's Meditations In B and Soilent Green's Deleted Symphony... It's truly and awesome experience.
Oh, if the eclectic mix of styles doesn't seal the deal for you then head over to their Bandcamp page and check out the first album, which can be yours for what ever price you deem worthy. Not only that, just have a look at the gorgeous wax they've have pressed for both releases. Limited to just a small number of each they're available from the band themselves or Wooaaargh Records, who possess quite possibly the greatest name for a record label since time began. I've picked a copy of each up, you bloody should too!
~ Jay
For Fans Of; Isis, Neurosis, Zozobra, Herder, Luti-Kriss

Friday, March 22, 2013

Drive It Like You Stole It...

Iron Hearse - Get In The Hearse (2013)
Despite being only their second full length, Iron Hearse's latest release Get in the Hearse sounds like the twelve years of experience this trio have accumulated (Iron Hearse was formed in 2001). Listening to the record you don't just hear, but you feel the synergy pouring through every heavy moment, and heavy moments there are plenty (if not only). All this heaviness doesn't manifest in any aggressiveness though, not at all, it is in fact really laid back. Where the likes of Sleep and Electric Wizard get to be stoner doom on 'roid rage, Iron Hearse maintain the same heaviness except they are lounging, beer in one hand, blunt in the other. The main reason for this difference is that Iron Hearse doesn't have an angry sounding singer, but he sounds like he's perfectly comfortable on a fine sofa. That, or my mind is just playing tricks while I'm perfectly comfortable here myself. Whatever may be true, sure thing is Iron Hearse play very heavy, doomy, and surprisingly bluesy tunes. Yes, very bluesy in fact, so bluesy I don't know whether to call it stoner riff fuelled blues rock or blues rock inspired stoner doom. Either of these may be true, but there is no point in debating, it's bluesy, it's doomy, it's good, and the only definition for it has been made by the band itself by naming a song A Slow & Heavy Ride, and for 2 and a half pounds it is a very affordable ride as well.
~ Ruben

For Fans Of; Amorphis, Baroness, ASG, Red Fang, Viking Skull

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Dirty Dutch Death Dealers...

Acid Deathtrip - Self Titled (2013)
I can only imagine that if Clutch ever got heavily into narcotics and pursued a fascination with all things occult the end result would resemble something akin to Acid Deathtrip. A heavy concoction of dirty, blues inspired riffs, doom infused bass and deep vocal that echoes of tone from a bygone era. Putting all these elements together results in something most aptly described by the band themselves; 'a blasphemous boogie'. Between the occult undertones and the relentlessly unforgiving and impending sense of doom that the entire album produces, it really is the perfect description. If you're still not entirely convinced you can always go by their Facebook description, which states, "getting face-banged by nudist midgets under a pagan moon". Personally, I'd settle with saying that they have something of a early 80's Maiden/Samson vibe to them, but each to their own I guess. There is a certain Bruce Dickinson-ness to Bob's vocal style, which does initially come across as a bit unorthodox, or at least it did to me. Mainly because if you were to take all the vocals away you would be left with something a whole lot closer to Karma To Burn than anything else. But as it stands, you're gifted with damn good mix of both, all set off beautifully with, for me, the best element of the entire recording, the absolutely killer riffage.
The album actually drops on 30th March, and as well as being available on boring old CD, the awesome Reflections Records have pressed a limited number on wax. Totalling just 500, there will 400 on black vinyl and 100 on purple. 50 of those purple presses being offered up in a cracking little die hard bundle consisting of the aforementioned vinyl, the cd, limited edition shirt, patch, stickers and pins. You've not long left and they're going quick so get them while you can over at the Reflections store now!
~ Jay
For Fans Of; Saint Vitus, Orange Goblin, Entombed, Grand Magnus, Windhand

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Smokey & Bong Hit...

Enos - All Too Human (2012)
In an attempt to try and get y'all to forgive me for the sparseness of updates last week I'm going to attempt to bring you an update everyday this week. Don't hold me to those words, I am putting the emphasis on 'attempt' there after all. None the less, lets get the ball rolling with some good ol' English space rock...

Now Enos hail from Brighton, the same place as our old buddies, Dopefight and Warwolf, but trust me when I say they are at completely opposite ends of the stoner spectrum. Think, less hardcore bong bashing angry fury and more Cheech and Chong spaced out mellowness. For the most part at least.
Yup, Enos really take the whole space genre and run with it. But instead of just plodding along the same old tried and tested formula the guys have given it their very own subtle twists here and there. Like a smoke entwined mix of Dozer and Pink Floyd. Classic laid back beats, with a nice little modern post rock touch. Predominately a chilled out affair All Too Human boasts some awesome ambient moments, but at the same time manages to be fully capable of unleashing a full arsenal of fuzzy, merciless riffs. It's amazing just how much of a balance this album manages to create, because unlike some of my favourite albums of a similar ilk it just doesn't seem to matter what mood I'm in when it comes to listening to these guys. Everything to suit your mental states is already there, which is great, but most importantly they've managed to avoid making the whole thing overly convoluted or disjointed by forcing in too many elements. All the little touches of blues, southern rock, desert rock, post rock and classic rock all serve to make one hell of an eclectic and memorable mix.
Although there is the occasional element of furious whaling, if you're looking for balls to the wall stoner growling you wont find it here. But if you're crashed out and looking for something to chuck on after Live In Pompeii has run its course then I honestly couldn't think of anything more suitable. Whats more, the guys have actually gone and got a limited amount press on vinyl!... You really, don't have much of an excuse now do you!?
~ Jay

For Fans Of; Pink Floyd, Mars Red Sky, Yawning Man, Sun Preachers, Tuber

Monday, March 18, 2013

Tripping Balls...

Methadone Skies - Enter The Void (2013)
This here album just has to be one of the least exciting albums of last year. No, that's not because it's bad, not at all, it's because Enter The Void maintains the same insane quality from entering the void until exiting the void. Not a single moment I hace caught these four Romanians losing grip on their instrumental psychedelic superpowers. If you enjoy Karma To Burn, Earthless, Atomic Vulture and the likes, just sit back, light one and get carried away.
It's amazing, nothing more to say about it. Just go listen!
Want the cd? Just head on over to Ozium Records, but there are only a handful left!
~ Ruben

For Fans Of; Karma To Burn, Sonic Flower, Gifts From Enola, Caspian, Mothertrucker

Friday, March 15, 2013

Grooves, Grunge & Grumpiness...

Chivo - Cantankerous Rock (2013)
Judging by their bandcamp site, Chivo introduce themselves as a straightforward stoner band and with Cantankerous Rock they do just that, introduce themselves as straightforward stoner. It's first couple of songs are of the heavyness you'd expect from such a band: very solid fuzz soaked rock. Even though very solid, and I can really enjoy me some plain stoner (and I'm sure most of you can too) my interest was really caught when I started hearing the band bringing some grunge in (do I hear some Seether in Feed The Show?) and start playing around experimenting. Swinging grooves and a crazy instrumental parts, check. Back to heavy fuzz, check. Accoustic song, check! This album is made with pure joy, Chivo slap you around with heaviness, grooves, craziness, acoustics psychedelic and back to heavy fuzz again. Never has a band surprised me (and pleasantly at that, too!) with the diversity of songs while still having the album sound like an album, not just a random collection of songs, and that's where Cantankerous Rock excels at. No matter how much I sile some individual songs, the way the album slaps you around with Chivo's broad arsenal is an experience. The 6 bucks charged are definitely worth it, but if you're broke (something I can very much relate to) then be sure to check out their first album, Swamp Of Sounds, which they've put up for name your price over at bandcamp.
~ Ruben

For Fans Of; Kyuss, Unida, Wo Fat, Lowpan, The Shooters

Monday, March 11, 2013

Holy Smokes...

Weed PriestSelf Titled (2013)
To be quite frank, its a pretty good rule of thumb that any band we get sent that has even the vaguest stoner references in their name are going to be pretty damn awesome. Yeah, I know that's not exactly an infallible conclusion, or even a particularly reliable way to run a blog such as this, but hell, just look our past experience!... Dopefight, Weedeater, Goat Bong, Dopelord, Wizard Smoke, Kamni (Russian for Stone)... None have steered us wrong so far have they? No, and now we have Weed Priest, so the question here really is; have they dropped the ball?...

Pfft, of course not! They're called Weed Priest for christ sake, don't be stupid.

Straight from the deep dark depths of Galway, this Irish trio play what most would refer to now as classic stoner doom. Initially that always strikes me as somewhat condescending, but the more I think about it, the more I realise that that's a load of bull. Every pioneer of this genre over the last 30 years or so have always had one thing in common - their first listed band of influence and one guess who that would be?... Of course, Black Sabbath, and naturally Weed Priest are no different, which pleases me no end! Why? Well in my opinion there are far too many social circles where listing classic acts such as Sabbath or Pentagram, has become something to be looked down on with a sneered venom. Usually by sudo hipster pricks, more often than not with dark rimmed glasses and hoodie underneath a cut off denim jacket adorned with patches of bands they, in all honesty, don't truly admire. I wont worry about offending anyone with that statement, because lets face it, even if you do happen to fall into that visual category you're obviously not one of those kinda guys because you're here. Reading this... and you have passed our test.
Much like these chaps actually. Because while it may not be something entirely new or ground breaking, it is amazingly satisfying and being as there is nothing new under the sun, what more could you possibly ask for? Dirty bass heavy riffs, a healthy dose of sample and a growling vocal that would unnerve Satan himself, all wrapped up in 7 - 14 minutes slabs of groove infused fuzz. The reality is, if you don't love Weed Priest, you really ain't a true stoner/doom enthusiast, and in the words of the late great Leaf Hound Records - "Death to false stoners!"

For Fans Of; Sleep, Saint Vitus, Witchfinder General, Acid King, Windhand

Friday, March 01, 2013

Just Veg Out...

Vintage Cucumber - Jup's Chillout Lounge Style (2013)
Did you wake up this morning and think to yourself; 'I really fancy some ambient German instrumental psych'? No? Well, no I didn't either, but nonetheless, that just seems to have been the way my day has progressed and besides, it Friday so sit back, spark one up and unwind for the weekend.
Now for those of you not akin to Vintage Cucumber, you could be somewhat forgiven for being put off by the name. Sure it's a little unorthodox when it comes to the realms that we usually scoure for bands, but trust me, if you're looking for trippy and chilled out you're certainly at the right place.
Hailing from Germany, the Cucumber is actually the twisted brainchild of just one chap, Johannes Schulz. Much in the same ilk as blog favourite Judd Madden, Schulz is a one man tallent centre that weilds everything from the guitar to drums to synth. The end product, in the case of this album at least, is something exquisitely unusual. Not something we tend to often plug here on the site, but well deserving of a mention all the same.
From start to finish every track flows past a variety on styles without every quite crossing the line and actually committing itself to a single one. Entirely melodic and without hast it gives off waves of classic psych, soft stoner rock, early Kraut rock, electronic and most preveniently space rock. In fact the whole album has a certain Blade Runner, post apocalyptic jazz kinda feel to it. With the healthy dose of synth and off kilter transitions, this recording could easily have come from the vaults of Vangelis himself. Hell, if you turned your lights down low and smoked enough of the right strain you could well imagine yourself in Deckard's apartment. But maybe that just the nerd in me talking.
At the end of the day it's going to be pretty hit or miss with a lot of you reading. You're either gonna love it or hate it. But I reckon that if you've ever got stoned out of your nut, drawn the curtains and put on Pink Floyd's Live in Pompeii dvd, then you'll really dig this little cracker.

For Fans Of; Giants, Vangelis, Omega Massif, Blueneck, Orbital

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Jup's Chillout Lounge Style (320kbps)