Let’s think of 2021 as the year that will reveal the ultimate artistic expression of all creators out there and, personally I am very excited with what the year promises pertaining to music releases especially in Metal. The year starts with the right foot with this release by Portugal’s Stoner Metal band Miss Lava and their fourth effort Doom Machine (Small Stone). This album explores how psychedelic and experimental sounds mix so well with Stoner Rock/Metal, with passages that go straight from heavy riffs into spacious soundscapes that will transport you somewhere else in the cosmos.
Ohio riff rockers Lo Pan and Detroit rockers Against The Grain will be venturing on a tour together. Lo Pan will be supporting their Colossus album, out now via Small Stone. Produced and engineered by Andrew Schneider (Unsane, Rosetta, East Of The Wall et al) at his own Translator Audio Studio in Brooklyn, New York and named for an ancient statue of the Greek titan-god of the sun, Helios, the record continues to raise the eyebrows of fans and media globally.
LO-PAN NxNe Tour 2015 w/ Against The Grain:
Mar 12: The Loving Touch – Berserker II – Detroit, MI
Mar 13: Grog Shop – Cleveland, OH
Mar 14: The Lost Horizon – Syracuse, NY
Mar 15: TT The Bear’s – Boston, MA
Mar 16: Wonder Bar – Asbury Park, NJ
Mar 17: The Depot – York, PA
Mar 18: Saint Vitus – Brooklyn, NY
Mar 19: Kung Fu Necktie – Philadelphia, PA
Mar 20: The Pinch – Washington, DC
Mar 21: 31st Street Pub – Pittsburgh, PA
Mar 22: Spacebar – Columbus, OH
Apr 09: Mudd Club – Strasbourg, FR
Apr 10: Paunchy Cats – Lichtenfels, DE
Apr 11: Rare Guitar – Munster, DE
Apr 12: Roadburn – Tilburg, NL
Apr 14: Black Sheep – Montepellier, FR
Apr 15: Maravillas Club – Madrid, ES
Apr 16: Rocksound – Barcelona, ES
Apr 17: Helldorado – Vitoria, ES
Apr 18: Le Volume – Nice, FR
Apr 19: TBA – IT
Apr 20: Altraquando Club – Zero Baranco, IT
Apr 21: Orange House – Munich, DE
w/ Black Pyramid:
Apr 23: Desertfest – Berlin, DE
Apr 24: Romer – Bremen, DE
Apr 25: Desertfest – London, UK
Apr 28: Sedel – Lucerne, CH
Apr 29: Gaswerk – Winterthur, CH
Apr 30: Das Bett – Frankfurt, DE
May 01: Schaubude – Kiel, DE
May 02: Asymmetry Fest – Wroclaw, PL
Not everybody has the attention span for songs that boil over the four-minute mark and when done badly, this type of music can sometimes be a chore to listen to. Wo Fat is a threesome from Texas whose songs have become longer and longer with each release, while their number of tracks has become shorter. Boasting a stoner-rock sound, with some doom and psychedelic tendencies, The Conjuring (Small Stone) is the bands fifth studio album since their 2003 beginnings, and like its two predecessors it is made up of only five tracks and yet consists of over 40 minutes worth of music. Mostly a solid listen, The Conjuring does however have some weak points that let it down.
Starting with the slow burning, southern tones of title-track ‘The Conjuring,’ it’s clear from the off that riffs-a-plenty are once again going to feature here and so they do throughout. ‘Read The Omens,’ one of the shorter tracks, is also one of the best; its upbeat and quick-tempo start continuing to remain throughout, while the excellent ‘Beggars Bargain’ ups both the southern beat and creativity even more. The Conjuring however is not all imaginative gold as ‘Pale Rider From The Ice’ suffers from dull moments as does closing number ‘Dreamwalker’, but on a larger scale. Weighing in at 17 minutes long, the final track of the album doesn’t have enough substance to justify its length and so the result is one of indifference.
The Conjuring doesn’t exactly bring anything new or exciting to the stoner-doom-rock genre, but it isn’t a bad effort within it. Fans of the band will be pleased with the new output, even if it doesn’t transcend their previous efforts and if you’re new to Wo Fat and enjoy this type of music, The Conjuring is worth a listen.
Or at least most of it is.