REVIEW: Devin Townsend – Order of Magnitude: Empath Live Volume 1

Devin Townsend is a music extraordinaire who is well-known for his many different and successful projects that he has participated in over the last 25 years or so. Whether it be Strapping Young Lad or Devin Townsend Project the man has always thrown his heart into it. He is a Canadian machine that expertly and consistently generates epic-scale music in many diverse forms. Last year he released his latest solo album, Empath (InsideOut Music). He took his essence to a new level of eccentricity with a masterful embodiment of bonkers meets serene. Many cling to the wilds that is Dev for his honest presentation, whether that be in Jazz, Metal, or whatever genre he chooses to express himself with. His devotees gather in the masses at his shows for a guaranteed excellent and entertaining performance. Last December he brought his uncommon magic to England and much like his actual works, the presentation was a little unconventional. Dev is about to release his new live album, Order of Magnitude: Empath Live Volume 1 (InsideOut Music) documenting that European tour. It will be released as a limited deluxe 2CD/Blu-Ray/DVD artbook package, a limited 2CD+DVD digipak, gatefold 3LP+2CD vinyl box set, and more. 

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ALBUM REVIEW: Mr. Bison – Seaward

Those who deserted Pisa-based riff kings, Mr. Bison, after their 2012 debut album We’ll Be Brief (Dracma Records) will recognise neither the physical nor the sonic entity that exists today. Only guitarist/vocalist Matteo Barsacchi remains from that initial incarnation, now replenished by two more Matteos – vocalist/guitarist Sciocchetto and drummer D’Ignazi – and the dry, ZZTop-influenced sound of that first effort has been gradually replaced by an oft euphoric leaning towards a form of Desert Psychedelia as progressive as it is retrospective. Their fourth album Seaward (Subsound Records / Ripple Music) is the band’s biggest step forward yet, displaying a level of invention and confidence that is both profound and joyous. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Old Blood – Acid Doom

It’s oddly satisfying when an album’s title is also an accurate descriptor for the music it contains. This is more or less the case with Old Blood’s second full-length album, Acid Doom (DHU Records/Metal Assault Records). While the group’s style may not be crushing in the traditional sense, their brand of Heavy Psych has a dark sultriness that should sit well with fans of groups like Uncle Acid and Blood Ceremony. And considering the four-year gap since their self-titled debut, it’s fair to say that things have only gotten more off-the-wall in that time.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville 

Taking its title from the 1965 Jean-Luc Goddard movie of the same name, and reverberating with echoes of Fritz Lang‘s 1927 silent classic, Metropolis, everything about Alphaville (Century Media), the latest album from New York trio Imperial Triumphant, is costumed heavily in film noir science fiction. Its unique atmosphere furthered by impressive cover art from Zbigniew M. Bielak, the Polish artist noted for his work with Swedish act, Ghost. Continue reading

PODCAST: Episode 113- Imperial Triumphant Discusses “Alphaville”

Ghost Cult recently caught up with Zachary Ilya Ezrin of Imperial Triumphant over Zoom ti discusses their new album Alphaville, which is due out July 31st, 2020 via Century Media. Zachary discussed the surprising global acclaim of Vile Luxury, the creation of the new album, how Zach – drummer Kenny Grohowski and bassist Steven Blanco approach composing, the theme of the new album, working with guests such as Tomas Haake (Meshuggah), Phlegeton (Wormed) on guest vocals, Yoshiko Ohara (ex-Bloody Panda) as part of the choirs, RK Halvorson as part of the Barbershop quartet, Sarai Chrzanowski as part of the choirs, Andromeda Anarchia (Folterkammer, Dark Matters) as part of the choirs, J Walter Hawke on the trombone, and Colin Marston on guitars, choosing the distinctive cover songs that close the album, opinions on other costumed groups such as KISS and Ghost, and what comes next for the band. Pre-order Alphaville here and check out our chat.  Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Them Moose Rush – Dancing Maze

Croatian trio Them Moose Rush, for those who’ve never had the pleasure, are pleasantly bonkers. It’s kind of like putting Jane’s Addiction and Captain Beefheart in a blender, and seeing what crazy shit results. The chaotic twists and turns within third album Dancing Maze (Dostava Zvuka) are all named after random people’s belongings or actions and allow accessibility despite the complexity of the music. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: The Earth Below – Nothing Works Vol 2: Hymns for Useless Gods

Deepak Raghu is an extremely diverse, creative entity. His previous forays into Rock and Metal have embraced many outlying elements such as Americana, Folk, and Soul: on Nothing Works Vol 2: Hymns for Useless Gods (Unheard Music), his latest outing with solo project The Earth Below, he melds those traditional sounds with melodic weight, in turn baffling and eventually ensnaring the senses. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Kilter – Axiom

Coronavirus, quarantines, lockdowns… This seems to be the only thing we are reading all through social media around the world. Though a very serious and sad situation (stay home!), there are other ways to battle the probable lack of activity that you may be going through at home and, if you feel adventurous, you should press play to Kilter‘s Axiom (Alter-Nativ). The Brooklyn trio composed of Kenny Grohowski (Imperial Triumphant) on drums, Ed Rosenberg III on sax, and Laurent David on bass brings a very exciting, weird record that combines the heaviness of their obvious Metal roots with the strange soundscapes that Jazz can bring. Continue reading

Drumming Icon Ginger Baker, Dead at Age 80

Sad news as classic rock icon Peter “Ginger” Baker, who rose to stardom in the 1960s with supergroup Cream, has died. He was 80 years old. The news was shared by his family in a post to Facebook, which you can see below. Baker died after battling a history long illnesses, including heart problems, and was hospitalized just recently. Baker was arguably the greatest drummer of his generation, and an all-time great along with Buddy Rich, John Bonham, Keith Moon and more. Best known for his work with Cream, Blind Faith, Ginger’s Baker’s Airforce and as a solo artist, performer, and clinician; Baker’s blend of Jazz music mastery and at times unrivaled power and creativity was a revelation compared with others at the time. His stint with Cream, particularly their live performances, was etched in the minds of a generation of would-be players.’ Politician’ by the band is arguably the first metal and stoner rock song. He certainly inspired the likes of progressive rock drummers to follow him such as Neal Peart and Carl Palmer. Eric Clapton is the sole remaining living member of Cream, now that Baker and Jack Bruce have passed away. Baker’s often had famously cantankerous and surely reputation, solidified by the documentary Beware of Mr. Baker. The film asserted that Baker was the greatest drummer ever, a sentiment Baker himself agreed with. We send out sympathies to his family, friends, and legion of fans at this time. Continue reading

REVIEW: Metallica and The San Francisco Symphony Live at the Chase Center

A Metallica and the San Francisco Symphony review was written by a band kid.

Full disclosure: I’ve known about Metallica since they were a four-line advert in the back pages of physical rock magazines. My first year of high school Kie C. gave me a mixtape of No Life Til Leather and Kill ‘Em All in the band room. I. Was. Hooked. Master of Puppets was released and I played it non stop. I learned to play the entire album on my flute, by ear. My first Metallica show was in 1986 when they opened for Ozzy. I was front row. That was my place for the next thirty-three years and nine countries consisting of 60 shows. It’s a lifelong love affair. Continue reading