zaterdag 24 oktober 2020

Off The Record – Store


Off The Record – Store

A few weeks, which turned into months, turned into half a year… But yes, some time ago I had the pleasure to meet up with Tjeerd De Jong. The man behind the Off The Record label, Off The Record Store, Stone In Egypt, Phantom Druid and many more projects still to come. Oh, and his very own Off The Record Festival! Which is now because of obvious reasons postponed… Yes, the man exhumes music through all his pores. If he is not working to promote the bands of his label, he is busy promoting the bands and their records in his store or working on new music. Sure, he also takes the time to listen to new music as well. Cause he won’t sell stuff he doesn’t like himself. Only a small section of the store is reserved for the better pop records and different sorts of more mainstream rock. Everything else is metal, doom, stoner and all round heaviness! “I’ve had people wander in asking about a certain popular artist. But if they would have just taken a look at the shirts and all the different kind of metal labels; they could have guessed it themselves.” And by sheer coincidence, only a little while later, (Coincidence? Right, this is how the Great Magnet works.), a Dutch middle aged man enters the store and yells: “Do you have Jannes?” “Do I know Jannes? Who is Jannes?” “Yes, do you have music by Jannes?” “Oooh, you mean that horrible Dutch singer, nope, ofcourse not. Try the store down the road.” 
 

There are ‘secret’ projects in the works and there is already a new Phantom Druid record underway. And how about a project with Monolith Deathcult called Demon Lodge who released a seven inch called Breaking The Sound of Death on October 1st. Cause every free moment the man can spare he is working on music for himself. Sometimes they end up becoming Stone In Egypt tracks. But more often than not, they sit on his shelf somewhere, slowly aging and slowly getting that extra twisted bite they need. Until the moment the universe calls out and points out that there is enough ominous energy present now for this record to be released… People who enter the shop with the intend to buy; usually end up going there monthly. Whenever pay-day rolls around, much of it is spent in his shop. And of course a few hours or so of high fidelity talk about what the best records or songs of a band actually are. Best sellers back then were the new Black Rainbows record, the reissues of Dozer, Paradise Lost’s Obsidian, My Dying Bride - The Ghost Of Orion, Katatonia - City Burials, Goden - Beyond Darkness and of course his own Phantom Druid and Stone In Egypt records. Who have their own, highly deserved, honorary shelf. Off The Record is Tjeerd and Tjeerd is always on record about his favorite records. If you are ever in the neighborhood, be sure to visit Off The Record, have a coffee with the Phantom Druid and drink in all that is good and heavy!

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OFF THE RECORD
Koornmarkt 24
8261 JX KAMPEN

 

We are unbelievably stoked, proud and honored to be featured on Phantom Druid's Death & Destiny album! Thanks to Shasta Beast's review! Thank you Phantom Druid! Thank you Tjeerd!

donderdag 22 oktober 2020

The Patients – I Am Your Muse

 

The Patients – I Am Your Muse
Self released – 2019
Rock, Psych, Stoner, Punk, Pop, Prog, Indie, Alternative
Rated: ****

There’s something incredibly sunny and upbeat about the full-sized debut album I Am Your Muse by Los Angeles trio The Patients. It’s the right amount of buoyancy in fact, the amount that everyone could use right about now. Indeed, there’s this indefatigable talismanic presence lurking on the record. One that might be the righteous guide through the pandemic. It feels like the tracks were born out of ambulatory jams that brought into focus the enormous pop sensible feelers the three have when circling around the prog, punk and psychedelic vein. The sound remains ragged, rough-hewn and ramshackle, yet always with a sort of indie sophistication that certain grunge bands used to have. Bone rattling chords, spirited rhythm defiance and a knack for bruising any unintentional channeling of alt.rock bands from the nineties. In fact one could claim their mould-breaking and chirpy adagio is their most effective injection into your heart. Especially if they leave their sound so frayed at the edges. I Am Your Muse is by no means a perfect record; but it is definitely perfect for this weird moment in time. So yes, it only feels right that The Patients should get a second opinion…


(Written by JK)


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Komatsu - I got drive

Komatsu – I Got Drive 

Soon the four Komatsu crazies will be releasing their new album The Rose Of Jericho through Heavy Psych Sounds. You can already pre-order the shit out of it! But since there is some sort of virus wreaking havoc around the globe, cancelling tours and concerts, the guys had some time left to get together and make a new video for an older song. I Got Drive featured proudly on their New Horizon record which came out through Argonauta Records back in 2018. Check it out and get some drive! 

 

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zaterdag 17 oktober 2020

DEAD - Raving Drooling

  

DEAD - Raving Drooling
WeEmptyRooms/Wantage USA/Rock Is Hell/Forbidden Place Records - 2020
Sludge, stoner, doom
Rated: *****

The latest in an outrageously prolific catalog, Aussie sludgers DEAD have re-released new full length Raving Drooling with the excellent Forbidden Place Records, and it's a monster. From the outset of opener "Remorse", the two-piece, co-owners of label WeEmptyRooms, make no bones about their massive sound. The drums are booming and ominous, avalanching like some march to war, and the tectonic low end busts in to hammer the point home. A mix of clean and growled vocals furthers the already dynamic instrumentation, and running beneath the noise is a taut sense of danger. "Digging Holes" adds a catchy chorus to twisting riffs and a molasses-thick churn of distortion, broken up by wild drum fills. The combination of sludgy riffs and big drums is DEAD's recipe for success, topped with a weirdness and aggression that mixes perfectly with their Big Business sensibilties. There's no weak track in the bunch, but if one were to be highlighted, "Nunchukka Superfly" is a special treat. The quaking bass rumbles through the tune's thrash attack, resulting in Black Cobra and High on Fire levels of heaviness. Closer "Follow the Breathing" takes the opposite approach with a relentlessly slow plod, the bass grinding out its murky tone while the drums trudge slowly on. Raving Drooling is unique and thrillingly creative sludge that stands tall and then some among today's heavy.


(Written by Shasta Beast)


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vrijdag 16 oktober 2020

Peculiar Three – Leap of Faith

 

Peculiar Three – Leap of Faith
Self released – 2020
Rock, Metal, Prog
Rated: ***

There aren’t that many band names that are chosen as well as Peculiar Three. For the three amigo’s from Greece that go by this name definitely have a peculiar sound. Their debut full-sized album Leap Of Faith has eight tracks filled with that peculiar sound. Peculiar mostly due to the different influences they implement and the different array of vocals. They double them, with grunts, with ghostly hallowed voices, with clean vocals that aren’t completely on key and with vocals that become this weird earworm. Even power metal sing-a-long choruses make an appearance. The sound as it stands, will almost be impossible to translate to the stage as a threesome. We hear damn good keys, a riveting bass, wild guitars, and technical drums and we hear it done with symphonic and prog metal in mind. But they state themselves it is, at this moment in time, a studio project. Which unfortunately leads us to conclude that the mix could use a little touch-up. The excellent drums for instance aren’t that well pronounced; the guitars sound a bit subdued as well. But the compositions are damn good, so good in fact that you often must suppress a feeling of disappointment, that the sound doesn’t completely do justice to the songs. And that’s how you wander through the first seven tracks, before coming to closing bonus song Caliban’s End. A symphonic, orchestral, classical piece that brings all kinds of grand movies to mind, and will have you fall in love with these three unusual characters. To end their debut metal album with this track might have lead to the album title Leap Of Faith. A great conclusion to a peculiar debut!


(Written by JK)


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zondag 11 oktober 2020

Molassess – Through The Hollow

 

Molassess – Through The Hollow
Season of Mist – 2020
Rock, Psych
Rated: ****

After the passing of Selim Lemouchi and thus the demise of The Devil’s Blood it was a long and painful wait to see if Selim’s sister Farida and her very characteristic voice would return to the stage. Without a doubt she was one of the keys to their magical sound. The end of The Devil’s Blood has paradoxically also brought us so much good and we could name so many amazing bands and albums that originated from those members. But we’re not here to do just that but to talk about THE new formation featuring four members of The Devil’s Blood and Rrrags, Astrosoniq, Atlanta, Birth Of Joy, Death Alley, and Donnerwetter... Well, Selim had another formation called Selim Lemouchi and His Enemies and from the album Earth Air Spirit Water Fire comes the final track Molassess. And that’s now the name of this new formation and Through The Hollow is their debut record. A psychedelic spiderweb of rock that would definitely get a nod from Selim himself. We still hear those wonderful sounds from the seventies, the doom and space side of the seventies, the prog approach and the thirst to combine everything into one huge heavy cauldron. But there is definitely less darkness and less occultism in comparison to The Devil’s Blood. And that is a good thing, cause Molassess moves forward, paying tribute to the dark melancholy and to twisted dreams layered with hidden meaning, but always with an eye on the horizon. Formed for Roadburn festival in 2019, it was the start for the slow but determined crawl to Get Out From Under and see the light. Through The Hollow is without any question just that and it’s damn impressive…


(Written by JK)


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zaterdag 10 oktober 2020

MXRCXL – All About Tomorrow

MXRCXL – All About Tomorrow
Self released – 2020
Rock, Grunge, Stoner, Alternative
Rated: ****

The man behind this, now four-piece, project is still the honorable Marcel Janssen, but MXRCXL sounds like so much more now, like a tight and centuries old outfit. Perhaps thanks to the mix of  Seattle-professor Matt Bayles (Soundgarden, Deftones) or because all his old ideas were thrown away when Marcel suffered a tragedy in the family and he decided to start over. This time with all the members present in the studio, the songs quickly moved into the territory  of darkness, depression, despair and do most of it all wonderfully aggressive. There are moments of subdued beauty, moments of light and air, little pixie piano moments that seem to float away with the aggressiveness towards a sky filled with hope and love. It’s grunge, but a noisy, newer form of grunge. Grunge avant la lettre. It's All About Tomorrow, as the new album is called, shows us a band that has completely grown into their own. They still retain a tiny industrial edge which definitely sets it apart form other grunge albums. The same can be said for their use of breaks and rhythm changes, which gives it this rich feeling and even some old metal atmospheres. Yes, it’s MXRCXL, it’s All About Tomorrow and it’s so much more!


(Written by JK)


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vrijdag 9 oktober 2020

Stoner HiVe’s Quick Fire Friday

Stoner HiVe’s Quick Fire Friday

And here’s yet another Friday with a world still in turmoil. It always is of course, cause the world is always in motion and yet the world never changes. And we shall not go into the depressing aspects of human existence. The rotten nature of mankind and the way we destroy everything around us. All of us. Nope, we shall not! Nope, cause that is not why we are here on this twisted little Friday. No! Fuck no, not today, thank you kindly. We are here to listen to the good stuff! And there is so much of that good and heavy, sweet and sour music out there. And we want to hear it all. In which case, we will have to make due with some fast action. Some Quick Fire Friday action! So here we are! And we know, we know, the albums and bands deserve more than the few words we will jot down here. More attention and more of our time! But there is so much out there and we just simply cannot ever do it all justice. So here it is. The Stoner HiVe Quick Fire Friday. And its burns hot like molten lava!

The Sonic Overlords – In My Darkest Room

Comprised out of members from Sideburn, Corroded, Revelations and OzzyTheCoverBand, new Swedish foursome The Sonic Overlords have just released their first single and video called In My Darkest Room. Harking back to the Dio years of Sabbath, we hear an almighty love for everything metal! Hell yeah!

 
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Breaths – Lined In Silver 

The weird amalgam of dreamscape and nightmare noise soon becomes this unholy black metal approach to everything rock we van put post in front of. One man project Breaths has just delivered his first single and title-track of upcoming album entitled Lined In Silver. It screeches at us from the threshold, like a monster at the end of it’s tether. But there will be reprieve, release and a silver lining… One day…


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Krause – Vague Outlines…

The single’s title is actually the combination of the two tracks featured on it. But since it then becomes this unpronounceable long title, we shall skip and just mention the fact that this experimental noise and sludge brought to you by Greek quartet Krause is crazy, insane, bonkers and completely awesome! It will dwarf everything around you with its violence and colossal heaviness! There shall be no reprieve here! No siree, go find yourself another Vague Outline of Almost Recognisable Shapes or Fraternity of Lost Men-Children


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Inner Ear Records

 Giants Dwarfs And Black Holes – Everwill

‘Psychedelic doom with a bluesy undercurrent’, is how Frazer Jones started his excellent review on his Desert Psychlist site of the Everwill release by German foursome Giants Dwarfs And Black Holes. We shall add seventies inspired classic and acid rock, stoner tuned guitar, stoner riffs and a female vocalist that hows like an oriental banshee. Before she tunes her voice to the sexy sigh and the sultry lines. All of that combined will make you want do drink the kool-aid, turn on the day-glo and see all those memories of nights that may never even have happened once again projected on the back of your eye-lids…  


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Raging Speedhorn – Hard To Kill

Raging Speedhorn is about to release, at the end of October, their sixth full-sized album named Hard To Kill and guess what? They have just put out a video for the title track! Released through their very own Red Weed Records it is once again gonna be one hell of a huge speedrock thunderfuck! Dual-attack vocals, crushing sludge-riffs built over a backbone of pounding beats and basslines. Exactly how we like our Raging Speedhorn!


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Galactic Gulag – The Unearthing

Heavy instrumental psychedelic stoner with doomed influences and hard rocking interludes, that is Galactic Gulag for ya! And the Brazilian foursome has just released a new single The Unearthing, and it’s the Gulag in majestic style once again. There’s blues here, there’s psychedelic goodness and a mighty instrumental adventure. After listening to this single and the one that came before named To The Stars By Hard Ways, one longs for a full album on vinyl… Longs very much! Galactic Gulag is simply amazing!

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