EXCLUSIVE EP STREAM: Hi-Jack – “Rank and File”

Milwaukee Rock duo Hi-Jack has teamed up with Ghost Cult today to stream their new release, Rank and File, out this week! Formed by drummer Ron “Hi” Terrell and guitarist/vocalist Max “Jack” Liam in Milwaukee’s underground music scene in 2014, the music they make sizzles with power. With all the baddass low-fi fury of Iggy and The Stooges, The MC 5, and the great lineage of midwestern proto-punk and heavy rock rawness, this band is a throwback in the best way. Check out their unadulterated jams, so purchase and stream the new EP right now! Continue reading

EXCLUSIVE STREAM: From This World – “Let It Go”

Ghost Cult does its best every week to uncover exciting new and artists who might be unsung today but could be important acts in the future. In this spirit, we bring you a new track by From This World, ‘Let It Go’! The song comes from their debut album Variations on a Dream and is a powerful mix of self-described “New Classic Rock”. We would liken these sounds and the album overall to a blend of Desert Scene rock, Jazz, proto-punk, great Americana, and Indie Rock bands of yesterday. At the same time, even with the throwback vibes, there is a modern nuance to the songs that will capture fans of Queens of The Stone Age, Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, and even The White Buffalo! Jam out to this track and be on the lookout for more From This World soon. Continue reading

EXCLUSIVE TRACK PREMIERE: Devils Teeth- “Sakuraba”

Milwaukee rockers Devils Teeth have teamed up with Ghost Cult to drop their new single today, and the action is go! Known for their eclectic musical approach, loud volumes, proto-punk rock energy, feeling catchy tunes, and a lot of fun, ‘Sakuraba’ takes its inspiration from the Japanese MMA fighter and wrestler known for taking and receiving heavy beatings in his matches. Turn this one up to 11 and listen here. Continue reading

Biters – Electric Blood

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It’s taken them 20 years to rediscover their midas touch, but of late Earache Records have been on a roll. A rock n’ roll, if you will. Whether Dig installed a Hot Tub Time Machine or not is open to scandalous rumour, but the label has been plucking 70’s rock success after retro-fuelled triumph, seeing the likes of The Temperance Movement, Rival Sons and Blackberry Smoke bring home the bourbon. Atlanta, Georgia’s Biters look set to be the latest in the line of acts on their roster recreating the magic of yesteryear, adding a street-smart proto-punk bite to their rock, rather than the smokey Southern vibe of their new label mates.

Kicking off with ‘Restless Hearts’, rocking a brilliant earworm of a bubblegum chorus, whose conception seems rooted in a world where punk and rock first met, as if Social Distortion had rocked out a couple The Sweet covers, Electric Blood manages to be effortlessly cool in its’ skin-tight Ts and tassle leather jackets. All through, the effortlessness with which the choruses lodge in the brain is to be admired, as Biters bring the pop of 80’s hair metal, mixed into a cocktail of the rough, sleaze and cool of The Rolling Stones and the panache (and tambourine) of 70’s Glam Rock.

Swagger, nonchalance and above all quality simple rock songs dominate the skyline of their début. ‘1975’ and ‘Heart Fulla Rock n’ Roll’ overload with lyrical cliché but this is no parody as they swing authentic, with the latter breaking out into a Gary Moore descending guitar harmony and old-school bass-led breakdown. Vocalist Tuk is part-cheerleader, part-rabble rouser and full-time tunesmith, his simple tones knowing their limitations, but infusing these straight-forward good time songs with the melodies and hooks they need.

Don’t go into Electric Blood expecting anything other than oh-so-cool pop rock, and a love of yesteryear. In the heaviness stakes, Biters are more Gaslight Anthem than Green Day, and at times both are brought to mind. With traces of Americana lacing tracks like ‘Dreams Don’t Die’ and nods to AC/DC (‘Electric Blood’) and Thin Lizzy (‘Space Age Wasteland’), this is an album that demands the top (or at least the windows) down, the open road, the speed-dial nudging naughty and voices raised in joyous communion.

These songs have teeth. Biters just bit hard, and these songs aren’t letting go.

 

7.5/10

 

STEVE TOVEY

Cancer Bats – Searching for Zero

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One of my favorite acts to come out of Canada, Cancer Bats, return with their fifth studio album Searching for Zero (Metal Blade Records) hitting shelves this week. I’ve been looking forward to hearing new material and I’m pretty pleased with the result.

‘Satellites’ starts things off at moderate clip and is a decent enough song on its own but it’s missing that extra oomph that I’m used to. It isn’t until ‘True Zero’ kicks in that the Cancer Bats vibe really starts to kick in. I’m not surprised that this is a single, it’s just so catchy and makes you want to sing right along with Liam Cormier.

If I have to choose a favorite track, it’d be ‘Beelzebub’ if simply for how it stands out from the other songs around it and hits you in the gut from the very beginning. It takes things down a few notches and feels longer than it actually is. Those stoner-y riffs are like candy to me.

I can’t just go without saying something with regards to ‘All Hail’. Regular readers of my ramblings, if you exist, should be very familiar with the giant soft spot in my heart for GWAR and former front man Dave Brockie. Maybe I’m a sap but I think it’s touching to see members of the community band together and show their support. The first time I ever saw Cancer Bats, they were opening for GWAR. I had no idea who they were but I fell in love in that night. I ran into Liam while he was working the merch booth at GWAR-B-QUE 2014. It was late in the afternoon and he was exhausted but he also seemed at peace. I don’t know when this tribute to our favorite monster was first penned, but I would like to believe that he would be content at seeing a common chant put to music.

This album is full of energy and it’s contagious. I was sick as a dog while writing this and I still the urge to just tear apart the living room. I don’t know what it is about these guys but they always get to me and put a smile on my face. Pick up the album and make sure to catch them on their current US tour through the end of March. I’ll see you at The Middle East in Cambridge, MA on the 27th.

8.0/10

ALEIDA LA LLAVE