Saturday at Psycho Las Vegas was no less impressive and perhaps the best single day of the fest band for band, especially if you were still able to stand after the first few days. Starting off with the public première of the Melvins documentary, The Colossus Of Destiny, followed by a Q & A by the director, Bob Hannam; this set the tone for the day.Continue reading →
Today, we’re taking a look at Las Vegasdoom metal Demon Lungand their new album;A Dracula (Candlelight Records). You won’t find multiple Draculas here, just one, lone, Dracula. I don’t mean the Leslie Nielsen kind either. I will fully admit that the doom general is not usually my cup of tea and rarely manages to catch my interest beyond a song here and there.
One of the songs that stands out is ‘Mark of Jubilee’. This is the longest track on the album and starts off slower than most others but it’s worth sticking with until the end because it’s just wonderful. It is hauntingly beautiful at times and I can’t get enough of it. Let me just say that I don’t typically care for female vocalists either but Shanda Fredrick is fantastic and absolutely shines on this song.
‘Raped by the Serpent’ closes the album on a high note. This song showcases the band’s ability to switch between quicker and slower tempos without losing the interest of the listener. Once you hit the six minute mark or so, Fredrick comes back to serenade you with those incredible pipes of hers. I could listen to the last minute and a half of this song over and over again. Ignore the name, this instrumental work is soothing and will fill you with all kinds of good feelings which may be the complete opposite of what Demon Lung set out to do, but, there you have it.
I am still not much of a fan of doom, but this album has grown on me a bit more with every spin. There is a lot of material there to digest that you won’t be able find in your first few listens. Fans of doom metal are encouraged to pick up a copy of A Dracula of their own and check it out for themselves.
Ides of Gemini have announced an upcoming West Coast tour with Clay Rendering. They are supporting their current album Old World New Wave, released last September via Neurot Recordings, as well as a special, limited Carthage/Strange Fruit seven-inch via Magic Bullet Records last month in honor of Record Store Day. They will employ the services of drummer Sash Popovic (Black Math Horseman), who will be filling in for Kelly Johnston-Gibson, who was injured on their last tour.
Guitarist J. Bennett stated:
“After the disappointment of having to drop off the Mountain Goats tour last month, we’re looking forward to getting out on the road again. Unfortunately, Kelly’s injury is still healing so she won’t be able to join us for the June shows with Oxbow and Demon Lung or our appearance at Cruficalfest in Salt Lake. The good news is that our friend Sash Popovic, formerly of [singer/bassist] Sera’s [Timms] old band, Black Math Horseman, will be filling in for those. He’s a killer drummer and a great guy, so we’re very thankful that he’s agreed to help us out. If all goes according to plan, Kelly should be back in action for the July run with Clay Rendering.”
Jun 05: Brick & Mortar – San Francisco, CA (w/ Oxbow) Jun 07: The Echo – Los Angeles, CA (w/ Oxbow) Jun 19: Crucialfest – Salt Lake City, UT Jun 20: Dive Bar – Las Vegas, NV (Demon Lung Record Release Show)
w/ Clay Rendering: Jul 14: Golden Bull – Oakland, CA Jul 15: Club 66 – Ashland, OR Jul 16: Wandering Goat – Eugene, OR Jul 17: Ash St Saloon – Portland, OR (w/ Jex Thoth, Atriarch, Barrowlands (no Clay Rendering) Jul 18: Media Club – Vancouver, BC Jul 19: Highline – Seattle, WA Jul 21: Press Club – Sacramento, CA Jul 22: Elbo Room – San Francisco, CA Jul 23: Sweet Springs – Los Osos, CA Jul 24: Complex – Glendale, CA
Crucialfest 5 will be held June 18-20, 2015 in Salt Lake City, UT. The confirmed line will include:
Goatsnake Dead Meadow Royal Thunder Rosetta Mothership Kowloon Walled City Giant Squid Captured! By Robots Uzala Norska Black Pussy Ides of Gemini Demon Lung Castle Lesbian Wild Throne Ghetto Blaster Eight Bells Cold Blue Mountain Throes
With Locals: Eagle Twin SubRosa Cult Leader Settle Down Baby Gurl Worst Friends Agape God’s Revolver Eons Dethrone the Soverign Dark Seas INVDRS Cicadas Disforia Odium Totus The Wasatch Fault Turbo Chugg The Ditch and the Delta Oxcross Filth Lords Die Off Top Dead Celebrity Anthems Stickfigures D∅NE Exes Hard Men Magda-Vega
Schedule Thursday June 18th Area 51 / 4pm / $10 / 18+ Stage Baby Gurl Eons Throes Cicadas The Wasatch Fault Filth Lords
Area 51 / 4pm / +$5 / 21+ Stage INVDRS Eight Bells Ghetto Blaster Cold Blue Mountain Hard Men
Area 51 / 9pm / $10 / 21+ Royal Thunder Wild Throne Settle Down Top Dead Celebrity Friday June 19th Area 51 / 4pm / $10 / 18+ Stage Cult Leader Rosetta Ides of Gemini Norska Dethrone the Soverign Disforia
Area 51 / 4pm / +$5 / 21+ Stage The Ditch and the Delta Castle Demon Lung Oxcross Odium Totus
Urban Lounge / 9pm / $15 / 21+ Dead Meadow Black Pussy Dark Seas D∅ne Saturday June 20th Area 51 / 2pm / $15 / 18+ Stage SubRosa Kowloon Walled City Captured! By Robots Giant Squid Mothership Worst Friends Anthems Stickfigures
Area 51 / 2pm / +$5 / 21+ Stage God’s Revolver Agape Lesbian Die Off Exes Danger Hailstorm Magda-Vega
Urban Lounge / 9pm / $20 / 21+ Goatsnake Eagle Twin Uzala Turbo Chugg CrucialREST – Sunday June 21st FREE / ALL AGES / FOOD Kids & Dogs Welcome! No Alcohol Please Bands and Venue TBA *Schedule subject to change. Accomodations
The idea that metal has lost it’s roots is nothing new. I’m sure you’ve heard it too. The complaints that metal has become way too polished and stylized these days. A sound which no layer of grit on your latest vinyl can compete with. I understand why bands do it too, but if these people would just quit their whining, they’ll realize there are plenty of talented bands out there that strive for the same dirty ascetic of their predecessors, who just happened to have limiting recording options. Take the first release from psych doom stoners, Wolf Blood fromBurning World/Roadburn Records for instance.
Recorded at Sacred Heart by Jake Larson in Duluth MN, the band seems to be making waves in a cross section of scene, calling on the interest of outsiders from other niches. Result of hipster culture holding Wolf Blood in their filthy grasp? In this case, I say let them have it and hop on the Wolf Blood train with them.
I was in their neighboring Wisconsin recently, and trust me, the festivals that go through there and how it’s supposedly the origin of Thrash Metal in America according to some stoner dude I met on the street (not true at all,) Minnesota they can handle a lot more metal culture inside the scene and out.
A powerful portrait is constructed in the first track ‘Witch,’ of a vengeful woman, tied to a cross and set a blaze. Lighting the precedent for this psychedelic, pagan blend of doom, Wolf Blood let the bass groves hang low and heavy, keeping the vocals to a happy medium. The solitary instrumental track, ‘Ochro Ologo’s’ menacing force pummels it’s way forward, paving the way for ‘Black Moon,’ which contains my favourite riff of the album. When you hear it, you’ll know. That driving force is relentless. If played to a different tuning, it could have been a Razor riff.
‘Dancing On Your Grave’ was catchy as hell and remains my favourite on the album. Brian’s bass is prominent and playful. Jake’s wavering vocals sound semi-submerged as he handles the kit masterfully. Each guitar break leaves just enough space for the the next verse to flow or your head to bang in perfect rhythmic balance.
6 tracks long and an athame blade deep, Wolf Blood’s self-titled debut will fulfill your every need for raw, honest riffage, bass heavy mystery and properly recorded drums that don’t sound like plastic over everything else. For fans of Electric Wizard, Uzala, Mala Suerte, Acid King, Dopethrone and Demon Lung, check this band out! I have high hopes for them.
The Year of the Snake: Four Days of Noise, Doom, and Booze in the Old Pueblo Part I
Early in the afternoon on the tenth day of October, a small corner on the edge of a rather quiet neighborhood in Tucson, AZ was besieged by a caravan of tour buses and vans. Within moments of screeching to a halt, this group of transports began disgorging the vanguard of an army primed for delivering an all or nothing audio assault of extreme music over a four day campaign. This was the beginning of the second annual Southwest Terror Fest, a celebration of heavy underground music with an impressive lineup that puts well known national acts alongside the best of the underground scene. Year two was all about outdoing year one. Doubled in length, with sixty-five bands, the headliners also grew in immensity with revered artists such as Kylesa, Red Fang, and Sacred Reich leading the charge. Anticipating the experience of seeing these mighty bands and discovering new ones, a heady excitement permeated the air as those first day bands and venue staff converged.
Within hours of their arrival, these merchants of extreme unloaded mountains of gear to strategic locations inside The Rock, the well known local venue on the street corner that was about to become anything but silent. The impressive array of guitar cabinets, amplifiers, drums, and other instruments were tuned and adjusted, while microphones were fixed to stands much like bayonets would be fixed to the end of rifles. Walking by the bar, one would have seen a stockpile of Pabst Blue Ribbon or a vast array of Jack Daniels, all of it neatly set up to supply the artillery of alcoholism that would shortly be firing for maximum effect. Yes, year two of the festival was definitely going the distance and pulling out all of the stops to make the biggest bang possible. Day one was ready to begin.
After an initial gaggle of local bands, who alternately performed on the main stage and the smaller, more intimate second stage, events began to heat up with some on fire performances via Godhunter’s confrontational punk sludge, Anakim’s cerebral hammering, and Sierra’s old school, groovy distortion. The mood of the event was cheerful and the growing crowd flowed smoothly across the the venue in search of merch, beer, or food. Later performances of note on that first day included a powerful set from Demon Lung, packing the smaller side room with their heavy dirges and apocalyptic vibes, as well as a rather unique band named Pinkish Black, who dropped an ethereal, keyboard heavy acid trip onto the curious onlookers over at the main stage. Once Kylesa hit the main stage to close out the first day, it was clear that all which came before was mere prologue. Through their trademark poly rhythmic attack and gut wrenching atmospheres, Kylesa was the definition of heavy during their debut performance in the City of Tucson.
As day two dawned, the festival kicked into even higher gear with a more extensive and diverse lineup. The crowd seemed to grow larger and more eager on that Friday night, ready to party harder. The bands slated to hit the stages for the evening certainly encouraged that attitude. From a local band Kvasura came Eastern European tinged folk metal that could make even the most kvlt hipster nod their head. The band featured an interesting male and female vocal combination, along with a guitarist who picked up the mic and sang a song in Russian. Tucsonans Lethal Dosage also whipped the crowd into a frenzy with their melodic, death tinged pummeling over in the once again tightly packed second stage room. The music grew even heavier when Oregon’s Transient assaulted ears with grinding chaos and Cave Dweller spit venom into the souls of listeners with their prog flavored death metal. Even these performances were outdone when Vehemence deployed a battery of razor sharp death tunes that mowed down droves of the crowd with flawless precision.
Rounding out the heavy caliber portion of the evening, Landmine Marathon crushed heads with their alternating groove, and straight dirty death grind. The mood seemed to shift after all of the super heavies were done, as a bona fide legend was about to get up on the main stage. The show became a nostalgic sing-a-long as Sacred Reich capped off Friday with 80s thrash and proof that the old guys can still plug in their guitars and rock. They could have played ‘Surf Nicaragua’ ten times and the attendees would have enjoyed each one all the same.
The bright lights of Las Vegas, Nevada have spawned a dark debut in The Hundredth Name by doom quartet Demon Lung. (And I just have to say, if Demon Lung isn’t the coolest fucking band name you’ve heard in a coon’s age, I don’t know what is.) The Hundredth Name is a concept album based on the film Warlock. Specifically the story follows the Son of Satan reassembling the Devil’s Bible, thus allowing the name of God to be spoken in reverse, undoing creation. Heavy stuff. Continue reading →