Garth McKee’s story has had several arcs as an independent record label owner including his current companies Crown and Throne Ltd. and Oinari Media. He’s also had a fascinating personal journey in life and business. Dumb and Dumbest Podcast number #126 is streaming now and it’s an Interview with Garth McKee of Crown and Throne Ltd. Hosted by Matt Bacon (Dropout Media, Ripple Music, Prophecy Productions) and Publicist Curtis Dewar (Dewar PR), they also offer The Music Marketing Challenge, a low cost, super high-value private training to bands and artists. Get hands-on practical experience to market your band like a pro today! Message them at the links below. Continue reading
Magnetic Eye Records, the home of brilliant stoner, doom, sludge, and other interesting bands has announced the next edition in their “Redux” series of covers albums. Having previously had huge sellout hits with Helmet, Pink Floyd, and Alice In Chains already in the pipeline is at it again! They will release a Black Sabbath tribute, Vol 4 in 2020. Magnetic Eye always pulls the finest underground bands to contribute distinctive covers such as Melvins, Pallbearer, Mark Lanegan, Ruby The Hatchet, ASG, Year of The Cobra, Yawning Man and many more. The Kickstarter for Vol 4 is live and certain editions are already selling out fast. Check it out, support the label which also puts out original full-lengths by their bands, compilations, has a subscription club and much more.
Home to the likes of Khemmis and the sickening might of Primitive Man, Denver Colorado has carved out a significant Metal niche in the last few years, and rag-tag trio The Munsens intend to mean more than a jagged splinter in that hole. Formed from a background of Hardcore, Punk and Black Metal, this particular identity offers an exciting amalgamation of the three disciplines with a huge dollop of gravity thrown into the mix. Continue reading
When the words ‘experimental’ and ‘French’ precede the word ‘Doom’ in a preamble, surely it’s impossible to ignore. Bordeaux trio Endless Floods, formed by members of cult outfits Monarch and Bombardement, are such a band and third album Circle The Gold (Fvtvrecordings / Bigôut Records) sees them test their expansive minds to new, sometimes more melodic limits. Continue reading
There is so much going on in the underground worlds of Black and Death Metal, be it brutal, kvlt, heavy, introspective, or just generally interesting. Last year saw a raft of stellar releases, and the trend is set to continue at the onset of new year. Both genres seem to be experiencing a renaissance at the same time, and the result is genuinely exciting for underground Extreme Metal, with everything from standouts in each genre to amazing crossover projects. In our second underground spotlight of 2019, we here at Ghost Cult we have highlighted a few releases you should definitely have your eye on as we head through the winter months. Continue reading
They say it’s grim up north, and few bands encapsulate that word better than Hull’s Battalions. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill frostbitten, Battles In The North kind of grim, Battalions specialize in a more belligerent, sludgy form of gloom with enough fuzz to match the amount of facial hair on these four loveable reprobates. Continue reading
Much of personal significance has happened to the members of Virginia Doom troupe Windhand since third album Grief’s Infernal Flower (Relapse) dropped in 2015: the resignation of co-founder and guitarist Asechiah Bogdan, after which the band has remained a quartet; the death of a friend close to the band; and the birth of guitarist Garrett Morris’ child. Given the joy and despair surrounding such events, it’s understandable the new full-length Eternal Return (Relapse) is a different beast from the droning sound usually expected. Continue reading
Ever since their 2014 EP The Doubt (Flenser) garnered serious attention and wowed underground audiences, Kristina Esfandiari’s King Woman have had an air about them that something special was on the way. Continue reading
Festival season is upon us again as we move through 2014. There definitely are some exciting new entries into the fold for your consideration and your hard-earned dollars. Even more than being a gathering of music fans, festivals lately tapping into a call from our collective unconscious, a plea for something pleasing to the ears as well as nourishing to our minds. We are of course discussing the inaugural Beyond the Redshift. Taking a page from the mighty Roadburn, BTR has one band of high exalt, in this case, Cult of Luna, curating the music and overall aesthetic of the festival. Slated to take place on May 10th at the three different venues simultaneous (all staggered stage times with little overlap), this promises to be an exciting, must attend annual event.
Not just a mere concert either, the fest promises a feat for the senses too with audio-visual/new media elements and installations. Cult of Luna themselves has been forging a singular path in progressive music for sometime, with a fandom that teeters on the brink of fanatical. Last year’s Vertikal and Vertikal II (the former ranking #2 in our 2013 Best albums poll of our staff) attained instant clout among fans and critics alike, a rare occurrence in these times of over-saturated bland music. The presence of CoL themselves leads one to think this fest will have an air of heavy progressive music and experimental ideals pushing the envelope, which it will. Representing different forms of underground music is the high-minded ideal of this fest. Top of the bill acts such as Godseed (on tour with CoL in Europe now) God is An Astronaut, Jesu, Amenra, Amplifier, are all inspired selections, with any of them being capable of heading up this fest in later years. Jesu and Amplifier have been incredibly hot of late.
The rest of the lineup has no holes, and owing as much to the headliners, presents a little something for the sub-genre snob in all of us. All of the a fore mentioned bands except Amplifier will play The Forum Venue, with Amplifier heading up The Dome. All of those bands will play one-hour sets, with CoL playing for two. Joining Amplifier at The Dome will be Bossk, The Old Wind, Esben & the Witch, Blueneck, pg.lost. Over at The Boston Music Room we will see Greg Haines, Sleepmakeswaves, Thought Forms, Dirk Serries, Hark, Further Down, Petter Carlsen, Abraham,Shield Patterns, Atlantis, Canaya all perform in what promises to be a killer experience. All of the venues are withing a ten minutes walk, making this concentration of artists, at one low price, possible the best value for true music fans this year.
The following manifest can be said to be guiding concept of the fest itself:
“The cosmological redshift is caused by the expansion of space. The wavelength of light increases as it traverses the expanding universe. Unable to assume that we have a special place within this universe, the redshift suggests to us that everything is moving away from everything else…
We may not be able to go beyond the redshift, but we can certainly think beyond it. We are bringing together artists who expand within their space – artists who create something special within this space.”
Tickets are priced at £30 + booking fee. 3 venues, 1 wristband, 12:00 pm doors.
Cult of Luna on Facebook
“I was listening some radio show and they were talking about how there’s no good new music and they were referencing lots of random sort of MTV things and… It seemed so obvious that these were just people who didn’t either know where to look or weren’t willing to put the effort.” That’s what Andee, co-owner of Aquarius Records, said on Kenneth Thomas’ Blood, Sweat, Vinyl. DIY in the 21st Century. An amazing documentary movie that everyone should watch. Now, let’s think about what Andee said and apply it the band Nothing. The “MTV things” is a good way to start because one of the things that every listener will notice, or so I hope, is that Nothing is, at the core, a punk band full of dark ambiance, delivered by the music and Domenic Palermo’s lyrics. If you go back to the early 90s you will find a band that jumped into the mainstream, with the help of MTV, and had some of Nothing’s characteristics, or the other way around if that’s so fuckin’ important to you… Yeah, I’m talking about fuckin’ Nirvana. The other thing interesting about Andee’s words is the “where to look” thing. Well, Guilty of Everything, Nothing’s debut album, was released by Relapse Records (a metal label). Yeah, it’s probably a weird match and you didn’t see that shit coming. Well, let’s think again. Everything has a turning point, it doesn’t matter if we hate changes or not… It will eventually happen. Right now we’re seeing a fuckin’ turning point. Deafheaven’s Sunbather, Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Death Grips’ The Money Store, and Nothing’s Guilty of Everything, these are some of the records that are putting an end to the limits that we know. I mean, they were not the firsts to stretch the boundaries but they are definitely, because they are what we know now, the ones to put the boundaries on the moon. We can even look at Nothing’s own history. They released their stuff in an indie rock label, in a punk label and now in a metal label. There’s no stopping this shit: eclecticism is our next stop. Nothing’s debut album is, indeed, another important landmark on the music business. Just like Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures, My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless, Neutral Milk Hotel’s In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, DJ Shadow’s Endtroducing.…., etc – No, I’m not saying that that is better or it will make the same exact impact… Fuck off!
That being said, let’s jump into Nothing’s world. The band, which if from Philadelphia, was formed in 2011 by Palermo (guitars/vocals) after some complicated moments and the break-up of his band, the hardcore outfit Horror Show. From their demo, Poshlost, to this album (don’t forget about their two EPs, Suns and Lovers and Downward Years To Come) the evolution is remarkable. Starting off with ‘Hymn To The Pillory’, where the first moments of melancholy are attacked with loud and noisy guitars, to ‘B&E’ (a track that was re-recorded, since it was present on their demo), that seems to use a type of crescendo that is always limited (I’m aware of the weirdness of this statement, thank you). There’s no stopping or dull moments in here. Brandon Setta (guitars/vocals), that joined the band after the demo, was indeed a turning point for Nothing. Looking at the cover you might think they have surrender in this bleak and dark world. Well, it doesn’t seem like that. The high levels of energy are a constant throughout these ten tracks. Jesu, My Bloody Valentine, Smashing Pumpkins, Slowdive can be influences, but they don’t restrain Nothing’s freedom, not even for one second. Probably the diversity and cutting edge style that I’m talking about will not making sense at first. You just need to pay attention and let the repeat button do his job. In the end I can promise you this: the music and lyrics on Guilty of Everything will make a huge impact on you. You will not explore Nothing’s music, you will explore yourself. “Spent summers in a well watching pale moons disappear. Alone.” Haven’t we all?