Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Interview with Sludge Overlords - Nibiru


Today on Sludgelord I am re-interviewing the brilliant Italian Psychedelic Sludge Metal Noise makers – NIBIRU whose debut album – CAOSGON – I recently reviewed and described it as:

I recently described this album as - “This album is an experience like no other. It destroys everything in it’s path. This is a work of genius on every level. I will say this now but this is my fave record of 2013 so far. I have heard some truly wonderful records such as Kongh, Ancient Vvisdom and A Void Of Sleep amongst others. But this album is on a different level altogether.

It’s beautifully produced from start to finish. It give me a sense of awe and wonder every time I listened to it. I never wanted it to end. Caosgon is simply astonishing and showcases that Nibiru are a band to be reckoned with.”

I originally interviewed them back in Nov 2012 before they even released their debut album. I thought it was time to catch back up with them to see how things are going. 

Q1 – Hi Guys, Thanks for doing this. How are things with you guys Today.

Ardath: Hi, it’s a pleasure to meet you again. We are particularly happy because, as we said in the previous interview, "Caosgon" has come out in time. 


Q2 – So CAOSGON has finally been released upon to the world. Have you been happy with the responses you have been getting so far.

I think it's not a good idea being too excited, as this could cause a loss of energies in the creation of new pieces. But we cannot be indifferent to all success generated by "Caosgon" in many parts of the world. We feel honored and we know for sure that we have created a very good product. 

Q3 – How would you describe your sound. As it's very hard to describe.

People defined us "Ritual Psichedelic Sludge", "Ritualistic Occult Doom", "Psichedelic Drone". It's clear that, listening "Caosgon", reactions are the same.

The sense of the tribal ritual reminds ancient ancestral scenarios, surrounded by mysterious temples, immense rainforests, suffocating deserts. Noises, dissonant sounds, insistent rythm, psychedelic opening and timeless mantras. 

Q4 –Now what is the album about. As I still can't figure out even though I am well into double figures listening to it.

We don't think it is necessary give at any rate a concrete sense to something that is already full of attentions. That particular feeling given by "Caosgon" is the only explanation. Feeling inside a kind of break with certain schemes, not feeling part of a foolish theater but feeling energy in constant motion. This is "Caosgon". 


Q5 – Was it a hard album to write and record for. Especially with the amount of genres and noises you have included in the album.

As specified in the CD booklet, "Caosgon" was recorded with a direct drive. No changes in the mixing stage, except for the adjustment of certain sounds. We wanted an authentic, aggressive, instinctive and powerfull product.

Siatris: I put few overdubs, we recorded the instruments together and then we added voice, organ and Virus. I had no great difficulty in pre-mix, I tried to keep the sound more "pure" as possible, that is what came out from the speakers, without altering anything. 

Q6 – Where does the name CAOSGON come from and what does it mean.

SiatriS: "Caosgon" comes from the Enochian language, which is also used for all other tracks. It means "tied to the ground" or “ earth-bound”. 

Caosgon cover art

Q7 – Who came up with the cool and creepy album cover. Gives you a sense what to expect on the album.

SiatriS : I chose the illustration of Aghoris because for me represents the pinnacle of tantrika culture, is a figure with many facets, for some they are the enlightened, holy men who can live beyond good and evil, for others are murderers and vulgar thieves .. I can not know what the truth is, that most likely is in the middle, but I'm still fascinated by this ancient culture of which very little is known.

It is said that Aghoris drink liqueurs, smoke ganja, eat meat (in some rites also human meat); they use a human skull as a bowl, they wander among the funeral pyres, meditate at night and don't have any sex inhibition. This path seems to be detached completely from hinduist philosophies and it deceives the true nature of this little known reality in the indian sadhus (ascetics) panorama. The ritual practices of the Aghori are symbols of their non-dualistic beliefs. The corpse upon which they meditate is a symbol of their own body and transcendence of the lower self and realization of the Supreme Self. The other members of the group were enthusiastic about this choice, perhaps because basically we are also a little bit outcasts ..

To this end, look at at the "Smashanam" video and you will not need other words. 

Q8 – With the album finally out would you change anything about it or are you happy with the final version.

Ardath: "Caosgon" is perfect, not for the lack of snags, but because it holds all our feelings, which in the past didn't come out with this intensity. If you listen to it, you perceive this vortex that breaks the mould and turns your point of view in a strong way. 


Q9 – So what else has changed or happened to you guys since I interviewed you about 7 months ago.

Nothing is changed in the way we compose, in the way we give life to NIBIRU's allucinations. We are conscious to have easily broken certain patterns and we want follow this direction. "Caosgon" is a rabid CD and this feeling of rage will never miss again in our future works. We'll change themes, we'll change technical settings, we'll test new ideas, but we'll always be coherent and preserve the element that made "Caosgon" something particular: the total lack of schemes. 

Q10 – Do you now have plans to tour more regularly. Perhaps even an Euro Tour to get your blend of Psychedelic Ritual Sludge across the masses.

NIBIRU have to play live. It's their essence. We are absolutely ready for moving masses. The CD has already demonstrated how NIBIRU are violent. Imagine all this in a live performance. We imagine it every day and we are preparing for this. 

Q11 – Italian Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal is currently on the rise with great bands such as Void Of Sleep, Ufomammut, Zippo, Lento, Three Eyes Left and Morkobot to name but a few. Italian Music really does have it's own take on all things Metal. Are you proud to be part of that scene.

You have mentioned bands that we follow with much interest too. Together with the NIBIRU, they concretely show how Italy is not limited by those schemes which bring people to listen especially mass music without energy, hypnotized by Sanremo's celebs: it's really sad. In Italy it burns a metal fire. We are very proud to be part of this scene, even if, sometimes, it would be great joining it with credit but with also more flexibility by everyone. In this way you can strenghten a reality with a great potential. A close circle doesn't grow up and in the course of time the artistic possibilities are much less. For example brainstorming, which improves the situation. 


Q12 – Has the gig scene in Italy changed within the last 6 months or so. Or is still the same scene. 

I don't see important changes in the Italian scenario, as there are still huge limits in this country about this kind of music. The bands you mentioned before have more success abroad, and so the NIBIRU, except for the great reviews about "Caosgon" in the Italian webzine. 

Q13 – I feel International Audiences are starting to take notice of your country's musical output. Do you sense that yourselves when you look around the internet. Or do you focus only on your own music for the time being.

As I said, the main success is abroad. It's absurd that in Italy the Sludge Doom scenario is so neglected, leaving place at pathetic music. But it's not our problem. Bands with a real importance don't have difficulty drawing the attention in all Europe and other parts. It's good that Italy continues to promote mass music; it's a pity that mass music is mostly crap. 


Q14 – You have your album available for Purchase on BandCamp. Via CD and Digitial means. Why is their two different versions of the album with different tracklistings and shorter songs. Is the CD the definitive version of your album.

Siatris:Yes, the cd is the original version, the only one that has been reduced on Bandcamp is "Invokation I: The Acid Skull", because it was too long to upload and it was not possible. Anyway, people can download a shorter version for free. 

Q15 – How big a help has BandCamp been in promoting your music.

Ardath: Bandcamp has been a very useful tool to promote our music and the tracks in there have had many followers, a big help, if you consider that music labels want to promote bands less and less, preferring the safe and predictable. 


Q16 – What are your views of blogs such as Sludgelord featuring and reviewing your records as opposed to mainstream magazines.

Blogs like "Sludgelord" are managed with so much passion, essential to give to bands an important point of reference. On the contrary, magazines seem to be more likely to accommodate reviews and interviews that are often bought, a very bleak situation.

Siatris: through blogs like Sludgelord I came into contact with great people, which is not possible in the mainstream magazines, they are too busy to fit most advertising possible on a single page. 

Q17 – What are your views record companies shutting down blogs and websites due to illegal downloading. Some people are for it and some people are against it.

Siatris: This is always a topic much discussed, I put two tracks on bandcamp for free, but I've already found some sites where you can download caosgon entirely ... but I would not tell them! Find them! If a person download my cd but then is excited about what he feels is maybe also interested in buying it, it is not through music that I become rich, this is not our purpose, we do what we like, if the download takes us higher audience that is fine . 


Q18 – What are the most and least rewarding aspects of participating with the band. Obviously the reality of how expensive it is being in a band could be considered as a negative aspect.

Ardath: Everyone has a way to exorcise stress, heaviness, monotony and the constraints of modern life. Then there is who cannot find solutions and ends in analysis stuffed with medicines! For us, NIBIRU and music are a surge, a release that gives us new energy to endure this very sick society where democracy is now a distant utopia.

This is a band. In addition to join people to finally achieve a single purpose, you can feel vibrations and emotions that you are sharing with others until you become one entity. A true enlightenment without false gurus or ridiculous entertainers. The sacrifice of having a room in which to try with the greatest freedom, the necessary equipment, etc…are demanding elements, but require with no doubt the right attention. 

Q19 – What pisses you off most in music today. And if you could what would you change. 

As in other areas of life, even in music it’s difficult that the most deserving person could go ahead.

Now, music is almost on the background. In a sadly material world you can be a mediocre, but with knowledges and money you can get anywhere. Then, among many others, the good artist can come out, but a lot of people of absolute talent are excluded or in a niche. to listen to a piece to find a particular band, you just want to make a profit. From a business point of view no objections, but artistically speaking it’s a real crap. In the past, you found the right compromises, but today the world is owned by brown-tongues with prepackaged smiles. With NIBIRU we would like to go back to forty years ago, but in any case not here in Italy…hahahahaha!! 


Q20 – What words of wisdom would you give to a band starting out or some friends wanting to start a band of their own.

Words of wisdom? Oh, come on, I seem a guru and it’s not what I desire. Surely in a band there must be harmony, so much harmony, unity of purpose, the maximum mutual respect of roles and sincerity. Too many times there are bands where everything is on the hands of a single person who considers the others modest session-men only, intending to dictate rules, opinions and trends with no hesitations.

This attitude can lead to an implosion of the other members of the group, a gradual rift, throwing away years of work, without concrete results. I think it's important to find an equilibrium where everyone can freely express, in a mature way, his particularity. 

Q21 – Have you had any more videos banned from YouTube. And if not, are you working on the next video to piss them off. HA HA.

On the web there are two other videos, "CELESTE, SAMSARA IS BROKEN" where you can see Tibetan funeral rites, and "SMASHANAM”, which strangely haven’t been banned yet; in accordance with the pathetic bigotry of a few idiots, we’ll do everything possible to create hormonal turmoils. 
 

Q22 - Finally, Do you have anything to say your fans

RI: In this full scenario of almost total indifference to alternative proposals which go beyond commercial clichés, defined in details, it’s essential that the "true" listener, which wants to abandon the flock, has still the chance to enjoy music he understands, he lives, he feels to explode inside. In this situation there are serious and conceptually involved webzines, as “Sludgelord” and many others. You can try, with all your might, to maintain high and strong attention to what is really possible to convey. We always must thank and vigorously support the existence of these virtual, but probably concrete, realities. More than you think. Never give up and always believe in that and live accordingly to that. We are ideally going back to the punk scene of the end of Seventies. There is a desire of breaking out.

Ardath: blood and sweat, when you enter in that room everything else is out. For a few hours even the biggest problems haven’t to exist. Indeed, this is the only "work" in my life that makes me feel truly realized. Each member of the band has a business activity in which he doesn’t save himself, because everyone has daily obligations, but it’s still a heavy constraint. You have to accept it, but, boy, when you close the Aadya temple’s door, nothing exists anymore if not NIBIRU. So it must be. Otherwise, forget about that because it would be humiliating for your person and for the music.

SiastriS: I want to thank the people who have supported us, Steve of Sludgelord, Lucas of the paranoid music blog, Stephane of Temple of Perdition, the Aquarius Records in San Francisco and all the others that I am not to list but which were equally important. Kaly is on your side! 

Well guys thanks for talking to me. Been great in talking to you guys. Good luck with your excellent album. All the best from Sludgelord.

Check This Brilliant Band From The Links Below:

Facebook
BandCamp

John Baizley, Nate Hall, Steve Vin Till & Scott Kelly- Songs of Townes Van Zandt 10” EP


John Baizley, Nate Hall, Steve Vin Till & Scott Kelly- Songs of Townes Van Zandt 10” EP

More songs from Townes Van Zandt by some of your favourite musicians. What's not to like?

John Baizley kicks things off in idiosyncratic fashion with “If I Needed You” opting for a vocal duet over a sweet country guitar line. It is good to hear anything at all from Baizley, considering his horrendous accident in 2012, so this is most welcome. Talented artist, talented musician.

“A Song For” is Nate Hall's Contribution and brings a sombre mood with a reverb drenched vocal. A fine contribution from this singer songwriter.

It really is a family affair here as Steve Vin Till sounds absolutely inimitable with “The Spider Song” (it really couldn't be anyone else) and Neurot records roster looks formidable indeed.

Scott Kelly, another public face of Neurosis, gives us “St John The Gambler” with its western stylings and lonesome sound. It rounds off the EP well. The styles of the contributors are all different, sure, but the work of Van Zandt unifies it all together so that every track is well placed and unified, somehow, in approach.

If you haven't explored the original work of Townes Van Zandt, why not do so? With artists of this calibre paying tribute and with Steve Earle giving his son the middle name of Townes... you really cannot get a higher recommendation, surely?

Written by Richard Maw

John Baizley, Nate Hall, Steve Vin Till & Scott Kelly- Songs of Townes Van Zandt 10” EP  is available to buy on My Proud Mountain Records. Well if there are still any copies left over from Record Store Day.

Kadavar - ABRA KADAVAR - Review


KADAVAR - Abra Kadavar

Kadavar is a Psych/Doom/Stoner Rock Band from Berlin, Germany

The members are:

Lupus Lindemann - Vocals/ Guitar
Mammut - Rivoli
Tiger - Drums

Fans of German trio Kadavar’s self-titled debut didn’t have long to wait for the band’s next opus. We had only just gotten to know the bearded wunderkinds before they announced that work was starting on their next album. It seemed sudden, perhaps too early. But just as their musical heroes had done during that venerated decade of rollerskates and bellbottoms, Kadavar were intent on pushing their creative limits and striking while the iron was still hot. This re-visited trend of bands no longer waiting two to five years to release albums on a regular basis has its detractors, and for good reason, but “not waiting” is the secret behind ‘Abra Kadavar’ and it’s creative success.

Think back, waaaay back to last July and the release of ‘Kadavar’ (that’s right, not even a full calendar year has gone by since the release of their last full-length album). It was a terrific album, oozing seventies sensibilities, full of oddmetre syncopation and progressive song structures while showing enough promise to be given the label “debut of the year” on The Obelisk webzine. After signing with German powerhouse label Nuclear Blast Records this past winter, album number two has been served up and put on offer and we’re only into springtime. Kadavar are nothing if not fast workers and smooth operators. Now think on the sound of the last record, what the overall impression was. For some, the overall impression might have been something like riff mulch, song ideas thrown into a meat grinder and blended together, but never lacking for top notch grist (in the form of those riffs). One after another the riffs wouldn’t stop and they were all excellent. For some, it might have seemed like Kadavar’s six song album was like a patchwork monster of 20+ songs compacted into six, which actually suits the band name quite well.

Now forget everything you know about how the band constructs songs and riffs, because ‘Abra Kadavar’ is an entirely streamlined affair from top to bottom. Trimmed is the fat! Gone are the madcap arrangements! The progressive flights of fancy have largely relaxed their tired wings and finally settled in to nest. While on the surface this may sound like a step backwards in development for the band, but it’s actually a flying leap forward.

It would seem that Kadavars have busy hands, and the less time given for them to tinker, the less unwieldy the end result of their labors will be. ‘Kadavar’ seemed to throw more riffs down the listener’s ear holes than one could process. ‘Abra Kadavar’ casts a spell with but a simple verse-chorus combo and for that reason makes each of the ten tracks on the album more memorable and more individualistic. As individual songs go, when thinking back on ‘Kadavar’, “All Our Thoughts” and “Purple Sage” stick out, but that’s about it. Not that the other four tracks were bad, boring or uninteresting, it’s just that their crowded structures and busy riffs made them a little samey. It’s not difficult to differentiate Kadavar’s new songs.

Once again, and this time around perhaps more so, Kadavar positively soak the listener in seventies sounds and vibes. A live recording with minimal vocal / guitar solo overdubs only serves to enhance these vibes. Menacing grooves, bright and manic solos, heavy handed chunking head down rifferamas, make Kadavar one of the most authentic ‘retro rock’ outfits on the market today. Maybe even thee most.

Some were disappointed when they heard “Doomsday Machine”, the first song released from this album, but that’s because they weren’t hearing the work in its entirety. As an album, everything hangs together until an identifiable sound emerges without it all getting too samey. Again, because the elements and song ideas aren’t all crammed together but each is given its own weight, its own time to shine, each song remains distinctive and demolishing. And fear not, for Kadavar haven’t changed their sound so much as its form, the riff content retains the early feel, the riffs are just less busy, the timing and rhythms more traditionally rocking and less proggy, but they remain recognizably Kadavar. If this album had actually been released during that epochal decade in rock, it would be remembered as a classic, thankfully for us fortunate enough to live in the now, ‘Abra Kadavar’ becomes our classic. This may just be the last album standing by the year’s end to top ‘best of’ lists across the world.

Written by Lucas Klaukien

Thanks to Nuclear Blast Records for sending a copy for ourselves to review. Much appreciated.

Abra Kadavar is now available to buy from all good stockists now including Nuclear Blast Store. 

Check This Great Band from the links below:

Facebook
YouTube
Twitter


Kylesa - Ultraviolet - Album Review


Do we really need to do an introduction for this brilliant and legendary band. Fine. I will play along for people that haven't heard of them.

Kylesa are a Psych/Sludge Metal Band from Savannah, USA.

The members are:

Laura Pleasants (vocals, guitar)
Phillip Cope (vocals, guitar, theremin)
Carl McGinley (drums)
Eric Hernandez (drums)
Chase Rudeseal (bass)

KYLESA - ULTRAVIOLET

So here we go, new Kylesa. But this ain't just any new Kylesa, this is an old dog with some slightly newer tricks. Don't get me wrong here folks - the teeth are still sharp, but it's overall a distinctly more placid affair. And that's not a bad thing at all. In fact, it's REALLY good.

'Ultraviolet' is the band's second outing proper for Season of Mist, a partnership that has yielded impressive results. They obviously have the creative freedom to be the outfit they really aspire to be, and SOM quite clearly has faith in them. That said, as previously alluded to, this new album is more laidback in it's approach. The songwriting has improved, and attention has been paid to expanding upon the already impressive vocal skills of Laura Pleasants. Let's break it down.

'Exhale' starts us off in typical fashion; pounding, almost tribal rhythms flow forth, all the while fused with some premier sludge riffery. Throw in some nice psych and we have a Kylesa track on our hands. Would be standard, were anything they have ever done be able to be classified as such. And it can't. Great stuff.

'Unspoken' signifies the beginning of the changes mentioned at the start of this review. Soft and winding, even more so than they have been capable of in the past, it gives way to a more subtle and less blunt guitar sound. You'll still stand up and pay attention, but you won't be hammered right away. And Pleasants' vocal shift comes into earnest even this early on in the record - her performance is genuinely astounding throughout.

'We're taking this' is more traditional Kylesa fare, frighteningly heavy from the offset and captivating. Dual skins, a trademark of their sound, come into effect for the first time proper here, along with the sweet / sour vocal mix, shifting from candied and ethereal to deranged and salted within moments. Were the entire album like this it would be a winner, but they are only ever content when they aren't resting on their laurels.

Without a shadow of a doubt my favourite track here, and I would go so far as to determine my new favourite Kylesa jam altogether, is 'Steady Breakdown'. It features one of their most sumptuous, pointed and glorious riffs. It's so light and dreamy, but utterly memorable. I almost feel sentimental about it, but I'd obviously never heard it before that first listen through. Now THAT'S fucking powerful. When you twin that with Pleasants' sultry new vocal highs it's damn near impossible to stop listening to. This thing is almost spiritual. I adore it.

'Low Tide' is like falling in a dream, and feeling at peace with all you have done in your life, and the people that you surrounded yourself with. Trust me. Listen to it.

'Vulture's Landing' is a sludgy version of an 80s new wave pop track. Think Blondie meets, well, Kylesa. Trust me. Listen to it.

I could harp on about this album until the end of days, I really could. It's by far their best work in an almost peerless career and discography. A bold new direction at times, but still completely heavy on a different level. There is yet an instance that has presented itself where I have been anything but totally excited to hear it. Please join me in that emotion. Grab 'Ultraviolet' today, and melt into it.

Written by Matt Fitton

Thanks to both Speakeasy and Season Of Mist for sending ourselves a copy to review/

Ultraviolet is now available to buy on Season Of Mist Records. Buy it now!!!

Check This Brilliant Band From The Links Below:

Official
Facebook

Corrections House - Hoax The System/Grin With A Purpose - Review


Corrections House is a Spoken Word/Musical Collective featuring some of the best musicians in the Sludge Metal Scene today.

The members are:

Mike IX Williams
Scott Kelly
Bruce Lamont
Sanford Parker

So, here we have Corrections House and their brand new offering: a single (of sorts) with two tracks, ‘Hoax the System’ and ‘Grin with a Purpose’. Both of these tracks are A-Side quality, dark and creepy, with doom-smothered guitars, industrial drum beats and insidious vocals. But who would expect any less? After all, Corrections House is something of a doom supergroup, comprising members of Neurosis, Yakuza, Minsk and Eyehategod. If this doesn’t pique your dark musical interest, I don’t know what will.

First up is ‘Hoax the System’, and it’s a sinister tone that begins proceedings, before a drum beat rams itself into the mix and contorts the entire song into an industrial soundscape of darkness and veiled horror. The vocals are filtered to sound like they are being spat through a microphone of broken glass, a perfect counterpoint to the vicious, vital music. Think Agonoize fused with Red Fang’s ‘Wires’, slowed to a suffocating pace. Scary, brutal stuff.

Now, ‘Grin with a Purpose’ is a much more tense, downbeat offering. Eyehategod’s and Neurosis’s trudging influences are none more apparent than here, and the vocals aren’t a part of the song, but more a warning placed over this siren of a song. The murky ambient nature of ‘Grin with a Purpose’ is a switchblade smile in a dark alley. Have your wits about you when this track growls it way towards you.

Corrections House is a lair of experimentation: where strange, inhuman creations spew forth. This 7” EP is hopefully just the beginning of something wonderful and terrifying. If darkness is what you seek, head to Corrections House. 

Written by Chris Markwell 

Thanks to Earsplit PR for sending ourselves a promo to review.

Hoax The System/Grin With A Purpose is now available to buy on War Crime Records

Check The Band From Links Below:

ENTRAILS - Raging Death - Review

 Entrails - Raging Death

Entrails is a Death Metal Band from Sweden

The members are:

Jimmy Lundqvist, Guitars
Mathias Nilsson, Guitars
Jocke Svensson, bass & Vocals
Adde Mitroulis, Drums
Fredrik widigs "sessiondrummer" on album "Tales from the morgue"

ENTRAILS - RAGING DEATH

Sweden's Entrails play a murky old brew of death and thrash, much in the vein of their native Entombed, or Seattle's stalwart new breed, the mighty Black Breath. Theirs is a sound sicker than a bag full of maggots left out in the sun, and heavier than a giant's headstone. That's pretty heavy, because giants are really big. Hence the name.

Enough about tall people, let's get down to the riffs on new album 'Raging Death'. The good news is that they're rock steady and have more chug than a German beer hall. These bad boys crash like a hammer blow, execution style.

'Carved to the Bone' features a tasty intro with some steady double bass, before it becomes a raging slab of groove, only to speed off the beaten path into full-fat death n' roll turf. Leather jackets and studded belts ahoy. This thing is a beast, and should come with a Surgeon General's warning. Pictures of broken necks plastered all over the side. Actually, fuck that, we should be trying to get more teens headbanging. Tell your kids to listen to this!

'Headless Dawn' shreds it's way out of the gate at speed. A full-on ripper of gore and grief, it only relents to break out some mad skills in the atmospheric solo department. Eerie sounds abound, and only complement the graveyard motif. The feel on this record is immense, and even though it would be easy to fake they've taken the honourable route and carved out that path themselves.

'Cadaverous Stench' is more of the same, that groove-death template that Entombed pioneered. The riffs buzzsaw, the drums hold steady and vicious, and the vocals are deranged and rough, yet clear enough to really interpret the malicious intent behind the track. And the intent is MALICIOUS.

'Death League' ups the tempo considerably, and shifts away from shuffling graveyard ghoul to psychotic gravedigger running after you. The sheer speed and concussive blast of the drumming here will knock you off your feet. Still doesn't stop it from descending into another steady rhythm of madness though. Brilliant stuff.

Gold star goes to 'Chained and Dragged'. THOSE riffs. If you can't raise horn to this then there is something significantly wrong with you. It's so very, very heavy in the good old-fashioned traditional sense (i.e. NOT just loud). That ominous feeling still permeates throughout. It positively reeks of it, like sweat and fear.

If you're a fan of nasty, dirty, putrid riffery then look no further than this latest offering from Entrails. It'll track your ears down and massacre the ever-loving shit outta them. Highly recommended, pick up a copy ASAP!

Written by Matt Fitton

Thanks to Metal Blade Records for sending ourselves a copy to review. Much appreciated.

Check this brilliant band from the link below:

Facebook

The Moth Gatherer - A Bright Celestial Light - Review

The Moth Gatherer - A Bright Celestial light

The Moth Gatherer is an Experimental/Progressive Sludge Metal band from Sweden

The members are:

Alex Stjernfeldt
Victor Wegeborn

THE MOTH GATHERER - A BRIGHT CELESTIAL LIGHT 

If I had a fiver for every time somebody told me about some amazing new post- / progressive / experimental band from Sweden I would be a very rich man. That being said, check out this awesome new Swedish band...

The Moth Gatherer are from Sweden, home to many cool bands of their ilk. They deal in the aforementioned sounds and sub-genres, but the real meat and potatoes of it is that they're really quite badass. They weave textures into their music that stay with you long after it concludes, and that way of thinking is written all over their debut album 'A Bright Celestial Light'. It can also be heavy in spades, which automatically earns them major kudos around these here parts.

The first slice of gold on offer is 'The Water That We All Come to Need'. It eases into life with some beautiful acoustic guitar strumming and a light, yet pounding beat in the background. Then it turns it's head and really brings the beef. Huge riffs explode into existence but it retains a progressive base that it works from. Really impressive stuff. Heavier than planets bouncing off each other.

'Intervention' is a noisier affair from the start, but still paced out with some melodic loveliness. The tranquil moments on this record are always like the eye of a storm though, and they set you up consistently for some crushing and cavernous low-end monster sounds. Those calming parts are glorious and rightfully earn their place. The vocals are also right up there in the mix, like they're reaching for the stars from the depths.

'The Womb, The Woe, The Woman' has some terrific droning riffs that increase in impact and effect when they are twinned with the serenity that is peppered throughout the track, and indeed the entire record. I imagine it's somewhat like the feeling that a nomadic tribesman must get when he stares at the night sky to guide him. You could be in the middle of nowhere and yet still feel connected to something. This music is just like that, and this track is powerful just like that. The piano toward the halfway mark is pure icing on the cake, right before the whole thing takes a HUGE left turn into hell and becomes heavier than the Earth's core. Mag-fucking-nificent.

For a first time offering from a group that isn't really a group (there's only TWO of them involved) this is some overwhelmingly good output. This is for the real music lovers, of both the grit and the peace, and you NEED this in your life. I heartily recommend that you check the band and this record out. You won't be disappointed.

Written by Matt Fitton

Thanks to Agonia Records for sending ourselves a copy to review. Really appreciate it.

You can buy A Bright Celestial Light on all formats now.

Check The Band From The Links Below

Official
Facebook

Of Wolves - Evolve


EVOLVE cover art 

Of Wolves is a Thrash/Punk/Sludge/Stoner Metal band from Chicago, USA

The members are: Steve and Jon

Well here is a loud and pissed off album if I have ever heard one. It's probably the most schizophrenic album I have listened to in a long while now. I have had this promo for a while now. A long while... - which I can only apologise to the guys for.

At first I didn't like it at all. It's a band very hard to describe. It's a mish-mash of all the genres mentioned - Thrash, Stoner, Sludge, and Punk without staying into one overall territory. I used to listen to Evolve when I was in a rotten mood. It was the perfect marriage made in hell. Pissed off Sludgelord against these thrashy punk upstarts.

Then with time I began to fall for this albums fucked-up charms. Yeah it's still loud, violent and angry as hell but it's one I am more at peace with. The riffs come thick and fast and go straight for the kill. They have a playful energy to them. The whole album is over and done with under 29 mins or so. But its an exhilarating rush that feels like a massive kick to the head.

It's all done in the best possible DIY taste and that's why I dig this album so much. Of Wolves rightly don't give a fuck what anyone thinks. They are playing music that is meant for one thing. HEAD-BANGING!!!

Actually the album does have some startling lyrics to check out. Mainly the band pissed off at the entire civilised world probably aimed at Politicians and Big Business. The 11 tracks may have you running for the hills at first but give it time and you will find an album to that is definitely worth checking out.

Check out excellent tracks - The Man, Moot Point, No Loss For Words and Red Skins.

If you want to give this a try then you can download this superb album from BandCamp on Buy Now Download. Or you can buy the CD if you want a physical version.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Check The Band From The Links Below

ofwolves.com
Facebook
BandCamp
ReverbNation
purevolume.com
http://www.shopbenchmark.com/ofwolves 

STEAK - Corned Beef Colossus - Review

Corned Beef Colossus cover art

Steak is a 4 Piece Stoner Rock Band from London, England

The members are

Kippa-Vox
Cam- 3 String Bass
Reece-Guitar
Sammy -Drums

Steak are a Stoner Rock from the UK who have quite a following. They have supported a whole range of great bands including Truckfighters whose blend of riffs have influenced their excellent new EP - Corned Beef Colossus.

It was a year ago when I originally reviewed their excellent debut S/T EP - which won praise across the Stoner Rock Scene with their blend of highly infectious Stoner Rock riffs with an added superhero twist being added to proceedings.

So what has happened since then. Well they have gained a new drummer and a new hard hitting Stoner Rock sound. And the results are highly explosive. Plus those Swedish Maestros - Truckfighters - have produced their excellent new EP - Corned Beef Colossus.

What else have Steak going for them - Well the EP's cover was designed by visionary DC Comic Artist Eduardo Ferigato. It gives the EP a wonderful over the top edge. What else do you expect from an EP chronicling the continuing adventures of Steak aka The Defenders Of Cyclone City battling against The Evil Lazarus and his evil horde of wrong-doers.

The EP gets straight down to business in rocking the fuck out with - Black Milk - A 5:03 minute riff loving track that will make you go weak in the knees. High octane riffs blended with Kippa's vocals show that the band are back stronger and better than ever.

The vibe of Truckfighters is present through out. Heavy pounding bass and drums give Steak a more dynamic edge than ever before. Plus you have Mr Dango from Truckfighters playing a brilliant guitar riff on this superb track.

Up next is the best track on the album - The 6:34 minute epic - Liquid Gold - that should leave you no doubt that Steak are the next breakout stars within the UK Stoner Rock Scene. This has a cool laid-back Desert Rock vibe before unleashing a heavy blast of Stoner Metal riffs for you to rock out to.

Glanshammer and Whiskey Mule are both up next proving that Steak have that Midas touch in writing kick-ass Stoner Rock tracks that will have you entertained from start to finish. Superb lyrics flesh out the riffage that Steak pound the hell out of you with.

Acid Dave is the last track to end this excellent EP on an almighty high. It has a cool psychedelic riff blended with more Desert Rock greatness. Definitely one of the finest tracks Steak have written so far. This would go down a storm on the live stage as it would get any Stoner Rock crowd pumped up for action.

Steak's time with Truckfighters is nothing short of a revelation. It has moved this band onto another level. I feel in a couple of years time that Steak will be mentioned in the same breath as their Stoner Rock heroes. Now it's time for them to get working on their full length debut album. As like their comic-book counterparts the world of Stoner Rock needs Steak more than ever.....

Corned Beef Colossus is a brilliant ride from start to finish. Steak should be proud of this release as it's going to launch them in a big way.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Thanks to the guys for sending me a CD copy to review. Much appreciated guys.

Check The Band From The Links Below

Check This Great Band Below:

Facebook
BandCamp

Check out the brilliant track - Liquid Gold. See why I rate this band so highly!!!

Northumbria - The Silver Forest - Review

The Silver Forest cover art

Northumbria is an Experimental Ambient Drone Metal Band from Toronto, Canada

The members are: Jim Field and Dorian Williamson

NORTHUMBRIA - THE SILVER FOREST

Based in Toronto, Northumbria are an ambient drone duo that records live and only uses bass and guitar to weave their lush brand of sonic tapestry. They make music of desolation, serenity and great beauty, completely amplified (quite literally) to the nines. They've also just made a new piece of music available, the extremely impressive 'The Silver Forest'.

I was discussing this with the boss earlier, and we both touched upon the fact that what we love about drone is the innate ability that the true masters of the craft have to transport a listener to a place of complete solitude. And that is exactly what this new offering manages to accomplish in spades.

'The Silver Forest' is very much escapist music. Sounds to attempt introspection from, to search within yourself and your surroundings. Human contact and complexity is all very well and good, but we all need to slow not just ourselves, but our minds down sometimes too. Maybe to a pace of a long past way of life, or thinking. Northumbria construct soundscapes that will genuinely help you on that voyage.

The piece is composed as just one track, but listed in three distinct parts: 'Motion of Clouds', followed by 'The Sun Also Rises', and concluding with 'Silver Forest'. All blend seamlessly within to each other and are hauntingly potent. Subtle fades, stirring melodic parts, and sometimes a heartbreaking weight. All of this creates real emotions, and real responses, from this very real music. The very best drone is often light as a feather, but in soulful terms heavy as hell.

Before this review I was completely unaware of Northumbria, but they have been covered on the blog before. Please delve back in time and discover those articles, as I have, and treat yourself to some incredible experiences. And check out 'The Silver Forest' right now, and ease your mind for just a moment. Let Northumbria move you somewhere else, somewhere desolate, somewhere calm and yet euphoric.

Highly recommended.

Written by Matt Fitton

Twitter

Great Review by Matt. Northumbria are a brilliant band that I am a big fan of. Download this now folks. You won't be sorry. Excellent. End Of.

Vinyl Corner : Abrahma/Wo Fat (Split 7" Review)


 Wo-Fat is a Stoner Metal Band from Dallas, Texas, USA

The members are:

Kent Stump - Vocals, Guitar
Tim Wilson - Bass
Michael Walter - Bateria Mastodontica 

Abrahma is a Pysch/Stoner/Hard Rock Band from Paris, France

The members are:

Seb Bismuth: Guitars & Vocals
Nicolas Heller: Guitars
Guillaume Colin: Bass Guitars
Benjamin Colin: Drums

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I had some hate mail a while back asking which bands' dicks I was gonna suck next. Answer: I guess heavy rockers Abrahma and Wo Fat would be the ones shooting all over my face because I won't swallow. I refuse.

Slurp.

Abrahma impressed the hell out of me with their debut on Small Stone Records and I was excited to learn of a new 7" vinyl split with label-mates and underground veterans Wo Fat. The only problem: the record with exclusive tracks was going on sale while both bands were on tour overseas earlier this year. Didn't think I would be able to get this thing and I can't believe there were some left over afterward. When Wo Fat recently came back to the states I grabbed one as quick as I could.

Side A. "War". What is it good for? Absolutely nothin', except for a sensational Edwin Starr cover as Abrahma's offering on this split. With everything happening all over the world these days, I think it's a fitting tribute to the 60's classic and, while many others have covered this tune, none do it quite like Abrahma. None do it nearly as heavy either. If you know and love Abrahma - even if you just like the original - then you'll enjoy the hell out of their version, recorded last year in France. Awesome.

Side B. Don't feel sorry for Wo Fat, even though they're "Broke Down In Texas". Feel sorry for yourself because you don't have this track in your collection. Recorded and mixed earlier this year in Texas by frontman Kent Stump himself, this romping, bluesy instrumental number is over 5 minutes of heavy trademark Wo Fat riffs, solos, beats and grooves. Hell yes. Though I really love Abrahma's effort, this is definitely the highlight for me.



This split featuring two premier underground rock band is extremely limited to 250 transparent green vinyl records with amazing artwork and design by Alexander Von Wieding. All copies went to the bands as far as I know so don't bother checking with Small Stone. Wo Fat has some left and you can check their website if you live in the states or somewhere else in North America. I know from firsthand experience that you get prompt shipping with those guys. If you're in Europe and you missed the tour, then check with Abrahma. They still have some, too.

Comes with a download card, which was how I was able to upload a digital version of the Wo Fat track for ya to hear. Hope Mr. Stump doesn't mind.

Support the underground.

--Heddbuzz

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBq1tsnWuzs
http://www.wofat.net/wofathoodooshop.html
http://abrahmamerch.bigcartel.com/
https://www.facebook.com/wofatriffage?fref=ts
https://www.facebook.com/ABRAHMAMUSIC?fref=ts

Vimyl Corner : Limb - Gift Of The Sun (7" Review)

Image of Limb: Gift Of The Sun, Ltd Edition 7" EP

Limb is a Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal Band from London, UK

The members are:

Rob Hoey - Vocals
Sam Cooper - Bass
Jodie Wyatt - Drums
Pat Pask - Guitar

I have something to say: every once in a while, 7 inches can be enough. Hey now, I'm talking about vinyl here so please get your mind out of the sewer. I recently picked up a new awesome 7" record I wanted to tell you about before it's gone. And it probably will be soon.
Actually, it might be appropriate for you to keep your mind in that sewer because the new LIMB e.p. out on New Heavy Sounds is awful damn filthy. Eww. Gift Of The Sun is nasty - full of oozing heaviness influenced by the likes of EyeHateGod, Goatsnake, Weedeater and more. I kinda love it dirty like that. Don't you? Put on your personal protective equipment because it's about to get all toxic up in here.

I happily stumbled across a demo from the masters of massive, LIMB. a year or more ago and was immediately struck by the hip-shaking grooves, monstrous riffage and thick vocals from the London 4-piece. I'd say it had a lot to do with the fat guitar tone and maybe even more - the swinging low bottom-end and timely tempo changes with this band. Whatever the case, they fucking throw down and don't mess around. It's all about the insanely heavy with LIMB and their new e.p. is no different. Damn...especially on vinyl. This is what the fuck I've been waiting for.

Side A: The title track (my favorite from LIMB) takes up the whole first side and runs about 4 minutes. I can hear why they chose to highlight this massive, driving slug. How can music be this heavy but still be so...groovy? It's not often that I come across stuff this good. While many might call it sludge metal, I'll just say that it's extremely heavy fucking rock with elements of different genres and has deep, emotional vocals that match the tunes. This is what it's all about people. You WILL do more than bang your head. You'll shake your ass and jump around (slowly), too, unless you're paralyzed from the neck down. Check out the YouTube video I included.


Side B: "Quiet Earth" is anything but quiet. Holy shit. Immediate and rhythmic fucking of my ear-hole. Slow but good; short and sweet. And if you're familiar with their demo (digital name your price at Bandcamp, 100 cd copies from Witchunter Records) then you'll be happy to know that the song, "Dead Voice" is also the third and last on this vinyl record. Needless to say, a standout from their 3-track demo sounds much better on vinyl. I don't know if they recorded it over again, remastered it or what, but I think the chugging thing has gotten twice as heavy if not more. I can hardly understand a word this guy is singing but you know what? I don't really care. I can feel his passion deep down in my bones and you will too.

But that's not all. You'll also get a bonus, exclusive mp3 track via download card that comes with your purchased 7" package, which includes a poster sleeve. "Into The Slave Nebula" is an extra 3 minutes to enjoy from LIMB and it's EXTRA-HEAVY, too. Goddamn this is a great band guys. I'm pretty sure you'll want this. No, I'm positive.

Gift Of The Sun is strictly limited to 250 copies on tasty orange vinyl so you better get on it quickly before it's too late. If you're like me and you live for the heavy, then you'll be glad you did. It's one helluva 7-inch record that's priced right and it's plenty for now.

Support the underground.

--Heddbuzz

http://newheavysounds.bigcartel.com/product/limb-gift-of-the-sun
https://www.facebook.com/LimbTheBand?fref=ts
http://www.limbtheband.com/
http://limbtheband.bandcamp.com/
http://limbtheband.bigcartel.com/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0mCC1uELXk

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs - The Wizard and the Seven Swines


The Wizard and the Seven Swines cover art

Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs is a Sludge/Noise/Punk/Metal Band from Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK

The members are:

Matthew Baty
Sam Grant
Adam Ian Sykes
Johnny Hedley
Ewan Mackenzie

Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs are a Sludge/Noise/Doom/Punk Metal Hybrid you all seriously need to check out now.

Their brilliant debut release - The Wizard and the Seven Swines - is a 22 minute sprawling epic of violent in your face riffs. They are a band from my hometown of Newcastle Upon Tyne. Plus this amazing release was mastered by James Plotkin.

This is seriously one of the best debut releases I have heard this year. The way the band blend all the different genres into an all out attack on the senses. It's Loud, Angry and Pissed Off As Hell. If you want fast paced Sludge/Doom/Noise/Punk Metal thrown down your throats then this is for you. It's fucking awesome from start to finish.

Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs are a very hard band to categorize so I am going to call them a brilliant Sludge Metal Band. Simple. End of.

If this is the signs of things to come then I feel a truly important band from the UK scene has arrived. The 22 minutes just flies by. The amount of riffs they pack needs to be heard now!!!

I loved every minute of this excellent release. If you want something different to brighten up your summer mornings then Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs is your band.

So fucking good they named themselves 7 times. How fucking cool is that!!! - These guys have just supported Conan and Bongripper on their recent UK Tour. And they were superb as well.

So what more reasons do you need to check this brilliant band out. Well it's available now on BandCamp Buy Now Download. It was mastered by James Plotkin and they have supported two of the best Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal bands currently out there - CONAN and BONGRIPPER.

Headover and download this brilliant release now. You won't be sorry.

Brilliant, Amazing. Excellent. - Just download it now!!

Check The Band From The Links Below

Facebook
BandCamp

Interview with Grey Host

Dawn for Vultures cover art

Today on Sludgelord I am interviewing Grey Host – The brilliant Sludge/Stoner/Post-Metal band who blew us all away at the blog with their amazing debut album – Dawn For Vultures

I recently described this album as - “Grey Host have released something special here folks. We are big fans of it at the blog. It is one of those albums that become better with each listen. I cannot wait to see where Grey Host go on from here as they released an incredible album. Excellent and Highly Recommended.”

I originally featured these guys back in 2011 when they were purely an instrumental band. Now they have added vocals to their bleak hard-hitting riffs. Well since the guys have finally now discovered their voice, they have kindly agreed an interview with me. And I can't wait to see what they have to say.

Ladies and Gentlmen time to get down to business with GREY HOST

Q1 – Hi Guys, Thanks for doing this. How are things with you guys Today?

John – Not entirely terrible, it’s finally good hiking weather here in southern Ohio.

Q2 – For people not in the know can you give them a brief history of the band and how it came about.

John – We were all pretty good friends before starting up Grey Host. Its inception was more or less as an improv doom jam session with Zac and myself after a night of drinking. We ended up getting together after practicing a few times and recording a guitar and drum session one day. Zac and Jason were both in the same program in school, so Zac knew Jason was a) into metal and b) ripped on guitar, so naturally he introduced us. After a year and a half or so of playing together and building songs, we recorded a demo of just us. During the few months after that, we asked Evan, who we were all friends with already, to join us on organ/keys. The rest was herstory.


Q3 – How would you describe your sound.

John – Mountains rising and crumbling like waves.

Jason – I don’t know if we have a particular sound, we sort of draw inspiration both sonically and musically from lots of different areas so it makes it kind of hard to lock down. I feel like every song kind of has it’s own sound. We might listen to a riff or idea for a song before it turns into a full fledged track and compare it to

Q4 – Which bands and artists influence you directly as musicians.

John – The great thing that I think helps form our sound is the fact that we all come from different backgrounds musically and have somewhat varied influences. I’m mostly influenced by heavier bands like Yob, Neurosis, Melvins, Sleep, High on Fire, and Asunder.

Zac - I get influences from a lot of different music. Bitches Brew by Miles Davis changed my life and how I looked at what a song could be. You can change patterns in the middle of a thought and let the whole thing completely fall apart.

Jason – I’m definitely a metal head at my core but I find myself listening to less and less heavier stuff as I get older, which I think has a lot to do with where some of the melody in my guitar playing comes from. These days I listen to a lot of post rock, Mogwai and the like, but also more experimental stuff like Locrian. For heavier music, bands like ISIS and Cult of Luna changed my understanding of heavy music, totally blew my mind when I first heard Celestial.

Q5 – Are you all full time musicians or do you have regular jobs to pay the bills.


Zac - Wouldn’t that be nice! Although the band is a big priority for all of us we’re not making a living from it, so we all have full time jobs.


Q6 – Are your family and friends supportive of your music.

Zac - We’re really fortunate to have very supportive friends. Not all of them are into metal, but they have given us a lot of energy to keep doing this. I think most of our families are really supportive of our music, whether or not they like the music. I played “Bonemother” for my mom when I was home for Christmas and her reaction was “That’s really creepy!” I think it freaked her out.

Jason – Yeah my parents rule, they’d support me if we wore corpse-paint and sacrificed live goats on stage.

Q7 – What is the song-writing process in the band. Is it a group collective or is just down to one individual.

Jason – there really isn’t a science or method to it. John or I will come up with a riff and bounce it off each other, sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. A lot of times one of us will have an idea and not know how to finish it or make it relevant to a particular riff or skeleton of a song, and the other might have something that fits perfectly or is able to come up with something that compliments it or flows well. I try not to think too much about it and let the process evolve by itself. After an idea is solidified, John and I take it to the rest of the band, throw in some beer and we have a song eventually.


Q8 – Your new album – Dawn For Vultures. – What a brilliant album. Congrats on that one. And you have now added vocals to the mix. Was that a hard or easy decision to make to go from an instrumental band to now adding vocals to the mix. I think the decision paid off big time.

Zac - We’ve always planned on vocals I think. It just kind of fell into place. We’ve actually got a lot of feedback, like “you guys would be a lot more marketable without the vocals,” but that doesn’t make sense to us. The instruments, the vocals, the artwork, it all works together to create Grey Host as a whole.

John – I’d always planned on doing vocals, but it took time to really find my voice and how it fit into the mix. I see them now more as another instrument, another layer for our sound, and not so much actual vocals.

Q9 – Was it an easy album to write and record for.


Zac - The album was a lot of fun to record. Jason and I are both recording nerds, and we had an awesome warehouse practice space at the time. We were doing crazy stuff like hanging ribbon mics thirty feet in the air at the opposite end of the room, and putting six mics on everything. We tracked the drums live with the band to get the same energy we have in our live shows. We went back and overdubbed the guitars, organs and vocals. The track Dawn for Vultures was actually tracked completely live with eight microphones, and is probably one of the best sounding song on the record.

Jason – Loads of fun recording. Overdubbing solos was the most enjoyable part for me. Usually being on the other side of the glass I never really get to let loose and rip some leads during the recording process. I think we had a few six packs of pumpkin beer during that recording, and we used an inhumane amount of mics with really strange placements, made mixing fun.

Q10 – Now it has been released would you change any aspect of the album. Or would you leave it as it is


Zac - Haha. I think if I tried to change anything at this point the other guys would literally kill me. But seriously, I love this record. I’ve never been more proud of a record I’ve worked on.


Q11 – How big of a help has BandCamp been in getting your music across to the masses.

Zac - BandCamp has been huge at getting us to places that we hadn’t even thought about. We were so focused on getting our Cincinnati CD release show off the ground it blew our minds when we started getting physical orders from Germany, Belgium and Finland.

Q12 – Is there a scene in your home town for you guys to gig regularly. Or do you have to travel further afield to perform live.

Zac - There are a few hometown Doom bands we play shows with pretty regularly, but the local metal scene is far from thriving. Following the slow progression of the band, we are just now starting to play shows outside of Cincinnati.


Q13 – In five words what is the Grey Host live experience like.

Zac - Drone turns riff, then Destroy

Q14 – What is your fave track off the album. Mine has to be – Dawn For Vultures. An epic and creepy masterpiece. It shows people what the band is all about. Heavy epic atmospheric and creepy riffs.

Zac - Bonemother is my favorite. It’s the last song we wrote for the record and is probably the best example of where the band is going.

Jason – I’d say Dawn for Vultures is my favorite track. Just the simplicity in the way we recorded it, and the simplicity of the song itself. I think because that track involved the least amount of thought and headache it’s the one track I find the most listenable, at least for me.

John – It’s honestly hard to say – though I think The Shaman or Wizard Sleeve are the most fun to play.

Q15 – What are your favourite bands around at the moment. Do you listen to modern day rock/metal or do you just listen to the classic era of Stoner/Sludge/Doom/Post-Rock/Post-Metal.


Zac - I finally got Pallbearer’s Sorrow and Extinction on vinyl. Damn, that’s a great record.

Jason – my favorite metal band right now would probably have to be Horseback. Seeing them live and talking with those dudes was great, there isn’t another band doing what they’re doing right now, and doing it so well. Horseback doesn’t just write tunes, they write very evocative soundscapes.

John – In terms of metal, recently nearly the only time I’m not listening to the Conan/Bongripper split is when I’m listening to the Cough/Windhand split, Panopticon’s Kentucky, or Horseback.


Q16 – What are your views of blogs such as Sludgelord featuring and reviewing your records

Zac - We’re still really just trying to get our name out there, and we’re honestly not the best at it, so I’m excited for all of it!

Q17 – What are your views record companies shutting down blogs and websites due to illegal downloading. Some people are for it and some people are against it.

John – I might be in the minority, but I’ve always been of the mindset that even if I happen to download something, I use it as a preview, and if I enjoy the work, I’ll support the band producing it any way I can. I don’t do that often, mostly because I think sites like bandcamp and services like Spotify have helped out the need for having to download something before you buy.

 

Q18 – What are the most and least rewarding aspects of participating with the band. Obviously the reality of how expensive it is being in a band could be considered as a negative aspect.

Jason – I honestly would rather do nothing else than play music all the time. I have a lot of fun with this band, through the bad shows and the great ones. I think the most rewarding aspect for me is the process of creation, and developing a concept from start to finish. Not just the songs, but also everything that goes along with the music, art, live shows, developing relationships. It’s all a process.

Q19 – What pisses you off most in music today. And if you could what would you change.

Zac - Cover bands.

Jason – Yeah man, if we could somehow take the idea that cover bands can go out and pull in $400 a night, turn that around, and put that support towards local original music, the scene would be much better off for it.

John – Most definitely cover bands. We get that people want to hear their favorite dad rock hits of the 70s, but it can be seriously creatively damning for music scenes.


Q20 – What words of wisdom would you give to a band starting out or some friends wanting to start a band of their own.

John – don’t take it too seriously and have some fucking fun.

Q21 – Finally, Do you have anything to say your fans

Zac - Thanks for all the support! We’ve got more stuff coming your way.

-Hail Sagan

Thanks to to the guys for the great interview. Can't wait to hear for more great music from this superb band. Check em out now!!!

Check This Brilliant Band from the links below.

Facebook
BandCamp

Interview with Hammerhands

Glaciers cover art

Now on Sludgelord I am interviewing Hammerhands – the brilliant hard-hitting Sludge/Noise/Post-Metal collective who recently impressed me with their excellent debut album – Glaciers.

I recently described this album as - “Glaciers is not only a truly wonderful album – it’s an incredible audio experience you cannot do without. Hammerhands are brilliant musicians. Some of the best I have heard this year. Glaciers is an album they should be incredibly proud of. I loved every minute of it.”

The guys have kindly agreed an interview with me. So lets get down to business with HAMMERHANDS.

Q1 – Hi Guys, Thanks for doing this. How are things with you guys Today.

HH (NJ for HH) – We’ve been busy as of late. We’ve got a few shows coming up, so we’ve been rehearsing and taking care of “administrative duties”, like prepping merch and networking. We were also in the studio working on a ‘secret’ project – we’re looking forward to releasing it very soon.


Q2 – For people not in the know can you give them a brief history of the band and how it came about. And how did you come up with the name HAMMERHANDS.

HH – The band formed two years ago after our previous bands dismantled. Jon and Collin were in ‘The Love and Terror Cult’ and they were a mathy-hardcore band; Justin sang in punk band called ‘Pijenhol’; and I played guitar in a hardcore band called ‘Dance Electric’. We had all been friends for some time, and had played several shows together with our bands. When those bands dissolved, we recognized that we had all desired to radically divert from our punk/hardcore roots; we all collectively desired something heavier and slower. Thus, we formed the band with that vision in mind.

‘HAMMERHANDS’ was a name that I had been playing around with for a few years and had intended to use for a heavier band (if I were to ever start/join one). Conceptually, I felt that the name conjured something that was lumbering and destructive: like a mythical goliath that would pummel mountains to rubble with iron fists. This band came together, and it couldn’t have been a better fit.

Q3 – How would you describe your sound. As it's very hard to describe at times.

HH – I would describe it as the auditory equivalent to quicksand. It’s thick, unapologetic, and encompassing…an inevitable demise that surrounds and overwhelms you.


Q4 – Which bands and artists influence you directly as musicians.

HH – Neurosis, the Melvins, Russian Circles, Swans, Boris, Isis, Sleep, Godflesh, Envy, Converge, Sunn 0)))

Q5 – Are you all full time musicians or do you have regular jobs to pay the bills.

HH – We all have regular day jobs to pay the bills/buy gear (haha), Although Collin and Jon’s music teaching jobs pretty much require them to be musicians ALL the time. On top of teaching, Jon is a small business owner and Justin runs his shop. I have a boring corporate desk job.

Q6 – Are your family and friends supportive of your music.

HH – Our families are generally tolerant of what we do, but I doubt they’d have a good time at our shows. We get the majority of our support through our friends and fellow local musicians. We’re really lucky to have a well-connected music/artist community where we live.



Q7 – What is the song-writing process in the band. Is it a group collective or is just down to one individual.

HH - The effort is more or less collective between the four of us. However, Collin and Jon are usually the ones to initiate ideas and concepts.

Q8 – Congrats on Glaciers. A stunning album on every level. Are you pleased with the final result or would you change certain aspects.

HH – We are very pleased with how it turned out. We have a great sense of pride in having done the majority of the production work ourselves: from recording and mastering, right down to the art and layout. We’re quite OCD, so I’m sure that if we had a chance to tweak things here and there we would. But overall, we’re really glad with how the record came out.



Q9 – Was it an easy album to write and record for.

HH - Our writing and preparation approach was long and meticulous for ‘Glaciers’. We had to rethink any previous inclinations and philosophies we had about writing music: gone were the days of our punk rock approaches and ‘good enough’ mentalities. This was probably the biggest challenge for us. But once we applied that approach, that’s when we started to see more and more of our vision coming to life. We were thorough and investigated themes, layers, and technical aspects of musicianship to chisel away at rough concepts and ideas.

We went through many drafts and revisions, and only settled on what was collectively sound amongst the four of us. It took us 2 years to write and record ‘Glaciers’. So, to answer the question: no, it was not an easy album to write and record, but the lengths and efforts we went through were worth it.

Q10 – What is the overall theme of the album. I felt it was a battle for survival at times. Especially the quiet ambient based riffs mixed with the loud and angry side of your band.

HH – The album concept is based on the exploration of despair through tragedy. Lyrically, I wanted to invoke the grief and turmoil that is experienced in times of calamity; the pushing of man to his outermost limits that force him to question his own morality and values. This source of grief is something that is monolithic and enormous, grinding and eroding away at the spirit of man; much like a glacier per se.

Q11 – My fave track is the 30 minute epic – Equus – Damn. I bet that was definitely a hard track to record. Was it always the plan to include an epic track like that for your debut album.

HH – Thanks, we’re glad that you like it. We had the intention of trying to conceive something that was longer and had recurring themes when we were writing Equus. It was one of the few songs on the record that took a life of its own. The progression from a lonely quiet riff that builds and expands to the multi-dimensional soundscape of decay came about naturally. Thematically, it was archetypal of the rise and fall of man: a quiet beginning - a short existence - and then the eternal and lasting decay of death.


Q12 – Are you pleased with the reponses so far you have received for the album.

HH – The responses have been good, so far. Mind you, those who have responded have been those who are into the kind of music that we’re playing. We do recognize that this is a niche kind of genre, so we don’t expect everybody to like it.

Q13 – Do you guys tour in your home town or do you have to travel further afield to perform live.

HH – The band and the album are relatively new, so the majority of the shows we’ve played have been in town. We hope to be able to play more shows in other cities/places soon.

Q14 – What is the live GLACIERS experience like. Can you tell people what to expect in 10 words or less.

HH – Bring earplugs.




Q15 – What are your favourite bands around at the moment. Do you listen to modern day rock/metal.

HH – Aside from the bands listed in question 4, we are also supportive of the talent in our locale. We’re really digging a young band called ‘WOLFS’ (http://wolfsca.bandcamp.com/) these days, as well as a ‘studio-only’ band called ‘VENNS’ (http://venns.bandcamp.com/). They’re in no way similar to what we play, but they’re good dudes making good music.

Q16 – What are your views of blogs such as Sludgelord featuring and reviewing your records as opposed to mainstream magazines.

HH – Blogs like Sludgelord have a far greater reach for bands that play the kind of music that we play. Mainstream magazines feature mainstream bands. We’ve come to terms with the fact that our music will never become mainstream, hence we rely on blogs that know the kind of music that we play the best and share common ideas and opinions.

Q17 – Has BandCamp been a big help in getting your music across.

HH – Bandcamp is currently serving as a great vessel for sharing our music. What appeals most to us are the artist features that track our plays and outreach. It provides great insight as to how people are finding our music. The new merchandise management feature is something that we are looking forward to using; Bandcamp is pretty much our main source hub for online distribution.


Q18 – What are the most and least rewarding aspects of participating with the band. Obviously the reality of how expensive it is being in a band could be considered as a negative aspect.

HH – The most rewarding thing, for me, is sharing the stage with 3 friends and playing the music that we wrote together. The least rewarding: nothing. There may be hardships, be it financial or differences in opinions, but any difficulties that we encounter are part of the pursuits of our passion.

Q19 – What words of wisdom would you give to a band starting out or some friends wanting to start a band of their own.

HH – Get a tuner. Seriously.

Q20 - Finally, Do you have anything to say your fans

 HH – Bring earplugs.

Well guys thanks for the great interview. All the best from ourselves at Sludgeord.

Check This Great Band Below.

 

Traitors Return To Earth - Betting On A Full Collapse - Album Review


Traitors Return To Earth is a Sludge/Stoner/Doom Metal Band from USA

The members are:

Chris Sherrod - Vocals
Kevin Masters - Guitar
Justin Ringle - Drums
Jordan Chasteen- Bass

Do I really need to say anything about Traitors Return To Earth. Well I suppose I can say the following

- Featured them 3 times now
- Provided one of my fave interviews of 2012 with one of the best ever quotes as well
- Possibly my fave ever band that I have promoted on Sludgelord.

Back in 2011 the guys sent me their brilliant debut album to review – Smokescreen. It was an album that made me an instant fan of this great band. Their blend of Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal riffs is why I started the blog in the first place, mainly to promote great bands like Traitors Return To Earth.

I have enjoyed a great relationship with the band ever since. If I could choose a band what I think best represents Sludgelord then Traitors Return To Earth is that band. Therefore, it gives me great pleasure in reviewing their brilliant and long awaited 2nd album – Betting On A Full Collapse. This is the album that should launch these guys on a greater scale as they deserve it.

I am reviewing the CD edition of the album. As the guys are releasing this album on both Vinyl and CD by themselves. The Vinyl has 5 tracks while the CD has two extra-unreleased tracks. My advice is to buy both copies as the two extra tracks are simply phenomenal.

Well back to the review. The album starts off in loud brutal angry fashion with – Human Drone – an epic 8-minute blast of dirge ridden Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal riffs with vocalist Chris on fine demented form. It is great to hear Traitors back louder and angrier than ever. Their guitars have been amped up for maximum earth shattering levels. It is a great track to show off their immense talents.

EHM is the next hard-hitting track to blast your senses into submission. A great slow-paced guitar riffs plays for about 40 seconds until the full heavy pounding riffs come into action. Its 5:23 mins of pure Sludge Metal carnage played for maximum attention. Play this song as loud as you can. It well annoy the heck out of your neighbours. A proper groove laiden track of epic juicy riffs.

The band told me they listened to a lot of Conan when recording this album. And you can tell. As they channel that brilliant bands energy and aggression but all done in their own unique way. If Conan ever do another brilliant split release then they should really hook up with Traitors Return To Earth. They would compliment each other so well.

Up next is Wall Street Swan Dive. A hard hitting and heavy pounding affair that would not felt out of place from their superb debut album. It is played at a slower level though Chris is still channelling his inner demon to perfection. The bass and drumming are simply immense on this track. It felt like my hearing was at war with the music. Heavy pounding Sludge/Doom metal Riffs that can be actually be used as a weapon. WOW!!!

The next two tracks is where the album becomes more epic and heavier than ever before. The brilliant 7:08 minute epic – Clawing For Scraps might start off slowly but give it time before the band descend into all out war and chaos once again. It will have you on the edge of your seat. Sit back and enjoy the mighty fine heavy slabs of Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal riffs on show. This track shows Traitors Return To Earth have became a bigger and better band since Smokescreen.

They know when to lay down a sublime doom and gloom based riff that will have you begging for more. Check out the riff that comes out of nowhere around the 4:30 minute mark. Brilliant stuff.

And we now come to the last track on the album (Well for the vinyl edition at least) – The amazing 11:10 minute epic – Betting On A Full Collapse. This is the track where the band have put their heart and soul into. It is quite possibly the best track the band have written and probably the best they have ever sounded. Crunching riffs playing through out the epic running time. Creepy vocals portrayed with a real sense of menace to show a side of the band I have not heard before.

They might be great guys away from the band but once they are playing as a collective unit then they are true demonic force of nature. A dark and brooding unflinching ride of thrills and spills take this album into the realm of brilliance.

It leaves Smokescreen into the dust and we still have two tracks left to check out. Like I said before the next two tracks are on the CD only. Please remember folks this album is all funded by the band themselves. Plus they did not want to jeopardise the quality of the vinyl by adding two extra tracks. The band consider the Vinyl Edition of the album as their definitive edition. So buy both versions if you can. Though the guys have still put together some mighty fine packages for both releases.

Anyway the last two tracks – In Humanity In Our Name and The Hollow run for both 9 mins and 8 mins respectively. Both excellent tracks continuing the heavy epic Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal riffs to hard-hitting perfection.

You might ask what version do I prefer- CD or Vinyl. Well I have to say the vinyl edition as it’s the guys preferred choice. The two extra songs are excellent songs but the 35 minutes that the vinyl edition offers features Traitors Return To Earth at their most heaviest and that is what this excellent band is all about. Heavy riffs with brutal amazing vocals to match.

Betting On A Full Collapse is a brilliant album that I cannot rate highly enough. I hope the album pushes these guys onto a bigger scale as they truly deserve it. This is their best work to date and I hope there is more to come from these hugely talented Sludge Metallers.

Amazing. Simply unmissable. This is a must have album for all Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal fans. So buy it when it is finally released in June 2013.

Thanks to the band for sending me an advance copy of the album. This has been my no 1 must have album of 2013 and it definitely has been worth the wait. WOW!!! – End Of.

Check The Band From the Links Below

Facebook
BandCamp

Ten Foot Wizard - Return To The Infinite - Review


Return to the Infinite cover art

Ten Foot Wizard is a Blues based Stoner Metal Band from Manchester, UK


Ten Foot Wizard is a Stoner Metal band I have been hearing only good things for a while now. Their blend of blues based rock might not be the most original of sounds but they are no doubt brilliant at what they do. Playing blues based Stoner Metal riffs that will leave you with a warm feeling inside. Their debut album – Return To The Infinite is brilliant from start to finish.

Taking cues from the likes of Clutch, Orange Goblin and Fu Manchu - Ten Foot Wizard are a band you cannot ignore. Return To The Infinite is a 10 song and 58 minute blast of Stoner Metal riffs of the highest order. It’s pretty good to see that Ten Foot Wizard add heavy doses of Southern Rock and even Boogie Style riffs to their style of Blues based Stoner Metal.

All of the songs have a huge likability about them. What makes them standout even more is the excellent sing-along choruses the band have written. These are songs you can sing along with your friends at a gig or at your local watering hole. These are perfect songs for head banging and singing to.

Opening track – Rise From Your Grave – shows you what to expect on their great album. High voltage rock riffs to shake your body and soul to. Vocals have a cool Neil Fallon vibe going on but still adding their own style to proceedings. Vulture Bitches, Real Love and Medicine all have a high volume of riffs to impress you with.

Some songs are played at a mid pace but the guys know when to speed things up so expect loud heavy rock carnage to come at one point. Mainly on the 8:29 minute epic – Six Feet Rising. This song makes you feel your listening to a band from the legendary NOLA scene. Not one from the UK. And that is a good thing as Ten Foot Wizard add many layers of riffage to their style of music.

Saturnalia is a fast paced 3:00 minute blues rock stomper that can get any crowd jumping in the mosh pit. It has a straight-in-your face punk vibe to it. This song even has a Metallica style riff in the middle that could even please the thrash metal crowd. Well if Ten Foot Wizard ever get the chance to support a Thrash Metal band that is.

My next track – FUCK – is probably one of my fave tracks off the album. As the lyrics are very simple to remember and kept to a minimum. Very easy to remember if you have had one drink too many. Like Saturnalia it has a playful punk energy vibe to it. They say actions speak louder than words and this track is probably evidence to prove that theory. As vocals and lyrics are kept to a minimum. As the songs mainly shows what highly talented musicians the band actually are. When the vocals actually arrive then it’s straight to the point. You know when you hear it.

The last 3 tracks is where the band finally unleash their potential to the world as it totals around 22 minutes of brilliant Stoner Metal riffs. The Storm, End OF The Line and Return To The Infinite prove without a doubt that Ten Foot Wizard can lay their claim to be one of the UK’s best upcoming Stoner Metal Bands.

These 3 tracks end this album on a high. Especially the title track – Return To The Infinite. A blistering 9 minute instrumental epic of finely tuned Blues/Stoner Metal riffs. Now it’s time for the for the band to really show what they can do. And FUCK!!! - They can be only be classed as riff-masters. Awesome.

By now you should already know what they are capable of. Playing brilliant Stoner Metal riffs like this.

Well I have gone on long enough. All in all – Return To The Infinite – is an amazing album from this motley crew of Stoner Metal outlaws. Long may it continue.

Excellent and Highly Recommended by ourselves at Sludgelord

Thanks to the band for sending me a copy to review.

You can buy Return To The Infinite from Ten Foot Wizard’s BandCamp Page on both Digital and Physical Versions.

Check The Band From The Links Below:

Facebook
BandCamp
BigCartel