donderdag 22 juli 2021

Woodcreeper - Mephisto's Kite

 

 

Woodcreeper - Mephisto's Kite
Self-released - June 2021
Stoner, alternative, psych
Rated: *****

Iowa's weird and wonderful Woodcreeper are back with their much anticipated second album, and it more than meets expectations. Mephisto's Kite is an alternative stoner rock delight, chock-full of groove with the band's signature warmth, while hiding a surprise around every turn. The excellent vocals are still charismatic and raw, but with more group vocals this time around to add a classy extra oomph. Opener "Chicory Witch" starts things off with thrumming fuzz and agile, busy drums to create an easy nod. Momentum builds until some bluesy, crunchy guitar kicks in, hinting at the soaring psych solo to bring the song to an epic close over crashing kitwork. Follow-up "Lavos Cronos" continues the bassy, bouncing grooves with some extra stoner heft, setting a firm foundation for punkier singing backed by hard-hitting gang vocals. In true Woodcreeper fashion, out of left field comes a frenetic sax solo that sounds eastern one second and Mars Volta-level spastic the next. Yet another curveball comes with the title track, a ballad with shimmering warmth that still absolutely stomps between choruses. At the risk of spoiling much more of the fun, before album's end the trio manage to fit in a Hendrix-channeling solo on "Ezekiel", classic rock boogie on "Puddy Cat Twist", and caustic riff assaults in closer "Orchid Gore", with a scorching space-bound solo as the cherry on top. Woodcreeper is still one of the best-kept secrets in stoner rock, but if Mephisto's Kite is any indication these madmen won't be under the radar for long.


(Written by Shasta Beast)


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dinsdag 20 juli 2021

Kvasir – 4

 

 

Kvasir – 4
Glory Or Death Records – 2021
Rock, Hardrock, Metal, Proto, NWBHM, Classic
Rated: ***

The Portland four that form Kvasir have released a new album through Glory Or Death Records called: 4. On it they will take you with them on a grand adventure through all ages of metal. Indeed, we can hear as much influences from the proto stages, the NWBHM era and all that which came after. But it safe to say their main forte lies in the proto era, the Iommi riffs and the Sabbathian grooves. And on those moments they infuse it with something doom or that tiny bit of stoner they turn the grand adventure into something truly majestic. Just check out that trucking second effort on the album titled: Authenticity & The Illusion of Enough. Tony Reed re-mastered the album for vinyl release and I’m keen to hear where it will differ from the digital release. Cause there are also a few instances where the tracks could perhaps benefit from a bit more thickness and a bit more low end. But even then you will love the curveballs these cats than throw, that funky, jazzy start of third tracker Slow Death Of Life which then turns into a Sabbath ode. And they boys know the best way to get people hooked, it to leave them wanting more. And after closing track Alchemy of Identity, you will surely be wanting more! It’s their full-sized debut, and it’s damn freaking tasty!


(Written by JK)


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DeWolff – Live at Royal Theatre Carré with Metropole Orchestra

 

 

DeWolff – Live at Royal Theatre Carré with Metropole Orchestra
Suburban / Electrosaurus Records – 2021
Rock, Blues, Seventies
Rated: ****

The three-headed classic rock ‘n roll monster from the South of the Netherlands keeps on doing that thing you would love to see them do. It’s DeWolff, the band we’ve been mentioning ever since the HiVe started. It’s the band we’ve dug ever since their first release from 2008 and that we’ve seen release majestic album after majestic album, blossoming and exploding into those wonderful records we keep on spinning. Especially that Grand Southern Electric and Thrust album of later years, which were simply put: classic solid rock gold. And then during that pandemic year of 2020 they went into Carré with a handful of people in the audience and a stage filled with musicians. Cause they got the Metropole Orchestra to perform live with them and it works pretty darn good! Even though it’s not that needed across the record, cause the three have enough power by themselves, it still add enough or even more on those moments that called out for something orchestral. Those subtle touches during the blues track Medicine for instance or on those few tracks when it all comes together perfectly and during Sugar Moon when the Orchestra takes center stage. A track list of old and new songs, translated into epic proportions by the DeWolff three and the Metropole fifty. It’s DeWolff, Hammond, guitar and drums. And a complete orchestra to subtle fill every nook and cranny and turn the compositions into something grand…


(Written by JK)


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vrijdag 16 juli 2021

Stonekind – Spirit of The Void

 

 

Stonekind – Spirit of The Void
Self released – 2021
Rock, Psych, Prog, Stoner, Grunge
Rated: *****

Still going through that massive amount of emails and mail that piled up during only two weeks of holiday. Getting to grips with all that and the June 2021 Doom Charts has turned into quite a process, also because the rent paying side of living has taken up more time than expected. But we love it all! And we love coming across those emails that immediately link with the choices the Doom Charts brethren made for the June edition. Like this months Number 7, Stonekind. I did remember their 2019 EP, but only vaguely, so I had no real idea what to expect when we pressed that almighty play button. And from those first musical moments their new full-sized album Spirit of The Void feels entirely compelling. And by the time that the third, title-track of the record, rolls around, you realize you’re listening to a bewitching piece of art. They way they push the prog rock envelope puts them in the same category as say King Buffalo. Using those same sort of elements and influences from psych and stoner to turn their prog rock into something compulsive. They have the same kind of strength and ability to make an impact during your very first listening session, both sonically and lyrically it will deliver in a way that will make you shiver, give you butterflies and cold sweats. And that’s just on a first session, and you will realize this is something huge. And with every next spin it will grow and grow into something even bigger. The three that were Stonekind in 2019 turned into a duo and implored help recording bass and drums from connected friends and their former bass player. It all sounds so perfectly executed, both bass and drums are tough, clear and spacious across the board. And the same can be said about the intense and strong vocals; as well as the guitar work. Which all manage to take the spotlight when there’s room and then immediately turn the light on another part of the song or instrument. Highly accomplished!  The three that became two have delivered a wild masterpiece with Spirit of The Void. And with that final terra stomping track Nomadic they’ve pushed their album over the top and into legend, (and here we go again with the accolades), yes, a perfectly ballistically delivered record, a blow against the empire, a beautiful and intense strike, like a hammer of the Gods, that will live on in rock… forever…


(Written by JK)


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dinsdag 13 juli 2021

Van Groover – Honk If Parts Fall Off

 

Van Groover – Honk If Parts Fall Off
Self released – 2021
Rock, Hard, Stoner, Desert, Metal
Rated: ****

They produce that gritty, sandy and dusty hardrock. You know the type. That heavy stuff that we all love so dearly and that received the moniker: stonerrock. We’re talking about the three from Herborn, Germany that go by the name Van Groover. Named after the enormous amount of time spent in vans (usually their own) and their inability to fix them once broken down, the album, which will be released in August, is called Honk If Parts Fall Off. Ten damn fine stoner tracks that will immediately enchant with their trucking power and the ever present humor. Humor of the good kind that is. Of the Red Fang kind I guess, the one that uses metal and riffs and damn good video’s to show that they mean business, but that the business will be funny and non to serious. The music stands tall though, it rolls across the terra like a monster truck and it will surely make you send them another euro. For the ten tracks tell the tale of the ‘van life’ and the adventures one may encounter during one of the many ‘van adventures’. Starting out with the bluesy kind of stonerrock, the tracklist meanders down to more metal touches, sludge influences, a punk adagio and even a bit of doom. Next time they’re on the road to a next gig, I’ll be right behind them, with a huge fishnet or magnet to collect all the parts falling off, never honking, making sure they get to the next town at top speed… Van Groover, you got a fan!


(Written by JK)


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zaterdag 10 juli 2021

Seum - Winterized

 

 

Seum - Winterized
Self released - June 2021
Sludge, doom
Rated: ****

From the filthy, sludge-caked opening bass riff, Montreal's "doom 'n' bass trio" Seum make their mission known: stomp, pummel, and generally lay waste, a goal their first LP Winterized very much accomplishes. Sporting only a bass, drums, and paint-peeling vocals, Seum do more with less and deliver one of the nastiest, heaviest slabs of sludge out this year.  Opener "Sea Sick Six" blasts out of the gate with earthquake-level low end, the gnarly bass tone threatening to rumble the lower-than-low tuned strings right off the neck. Heavy handed drumming keeps pace with high impact, rolling grooves, of which there is an abundance across the record, and the first screams are appropriately blood curdling. Beneath the sludge assault is an underlying doomy vibe, however, that brings weighted nod to the abrasive aggro. "Broken Bones", another standout cut, shows off deft drumming with a bouncing, start-stop rhythm paired with barked vocals that sounds like a nastier Pod People. Doom rears its head once again with long, booming notes that don't ring out as much as drag themselves through the sonic muck. The track's conclusion is an explosion of noise, with throat destroying screams that hold their own against the instrumental chaos. Whether leaning into slower nod in "Black Snail Volcano" or smashing out an unexpectedly earworm chorus in "Red Sematary", Seum have a deathgrip hold on their particularly rotten flavor of sludge, and masterfully deliver the uncompromisingly heavy experience that is Winterized.


(Written by Shasta Beast)


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Horisont – Sheldon Churchyard

 

 

 Horisont – Sheldon Churchyard

It’s never a bad day when you are treated to a new Horisont song. The Swedish five used their downtime to record two new songs. First is “Sheldon Churchyard”, originally by Larry Jon Wilson: “That driving groove combined with those enigmatic lyrics really transfer you to another time and place. Let the groove lead the way and see where you’ll wound up.”

The band comments on the idea of the recordings: “As big fans of country music we wanted to do a couple of songs that people might not expect from us. Still, we wanted them to sound like Horisont. So we set up at Let Them Swing Studio and hit the record button just to see where the songs took us. This is the result. Let Them Swing Studio is a recording studio in the countryside outside of Gothenburg, Sweden, owned and run by Kim and Malin. They rebuilt an old barn on their property and set it up for live recording. With no neighbors in sight, it’s an ideal place to make noise 24-7. A weekend mixed of relaxed creativity and fun.”


Stay tuned for another obscure cover that will be out soon.

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vrijdag 9 juli 2021

Alien Lard - Ugly Music for Ugly People (or at the very least, for those who are aware that they are not conventionally beautiful)

 

 

Alien Lard - Ugly Music for Ugly People (or at the very least, for those who are aware that they are not conventionally beautiful)
Self released – 2021
Sludge, Stoner, Post- Hardcore
Rated: ****

Hot on the heels of Dr. Colossus for "longest album title of the year" come fellow Aussies Alien Lard with their own: "Ugly Music for Ugly People (or at the very least, for those who are aware that they are not conventionally beautiful)" proffers a hefty slice of Sludged-up Post-Hardcore from the Bendigo outfit, with Stoner elements and a Groove Metal chug! Opener, "That's What They Said About 'Nam" wields a rock of Bass underpinning a discordant guitar lick before the percussion kicks the whole thing to life, vocals alternating between clean and dirty with snarling cynicism over the whole shebang. "Tear It Up (and Light Fire to It)" is a slamming Groove Metal riff with rumbling, elastic bass and stark abrasion in the sound. "Get Lost" opens with a mid-tempo bass/percussive beat, guitar stifling chopped riffage as the vocals again vent and thrust. "Wheels" slows the tempo slightly, Harmonic vocals opening over subdued guitar then blossoms into a Post-Hardcore trudge across a bleak, stripped-back tundra of noise. Closer "More or Less (But Mainly More)" again rumbles in on a dribbling bassline, scratchy guitar shreds and forceful percussion driving it into a danceable Groove Metal format, again replete with sardonic clean/harsh vocal combos spouting it's message across. All in all, Alien Lard brings energy and attitude to the table, along with catchy yet forceful songs that will have you groovin' 'n' croonin' alike.


(Written by Reek of STOOM)


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donderdag 8 juli 2021

The Doom Chart for June 2021

 

 

Doom Charts

The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.” ~ Jim Morrison

Amen Mr. Morrison, can you come back and join our hard rock revolution? Time to put down the act, societal roles are overrated, we must stand up and fight for our right to party. Or is this the end my friend? I imagine Jim would be quite unhappy about the way the media has contorted reality lately, but what he would be blown away with is this months Doom Charts!! What a month. The year is halfway over and like the weather in the northern hemisphere, the global output of heavy underground music is heating up. Without further ado, let’s dive into the June Doom Charts.

Let’s indeed do that! Let’s deep dive that stuff! Cause we weren’t around for this month’s edition. We were travelling hard through the French vistas and slow up those mountains. But upon our return we are giddy with anticipation of checking all those June Edition albums that made the Doom Charts. Cause there are quite a few we did not hear yet and we are glad to see many of the albums we voted for before or would have voted for this month made the final list. Vokonis, Yo No Se, Spacemetal, Pale Keeper, Dunbarrow, Seum, Savanah, Tarlung, 10,000 Years, Shun, Boss Keloid, Heavy Temple and ofcourse the Number One: King Buffalo! Which we wrote a little thing about back in May... Man, and then there are about 20 others we need to check out! Which will dive into immediately! Let’s check’m out! Check’m all out!

Welcome to Doom Charts, representing some of the finest bloggers, journalists, radio, podcasters and album reviewers from the heavy underground around the globe.  Each month, our critics submit their picks for the best new doom, sludge metal, stoner-psychedelic and heavy rock albums.  The results are compiled and tabulated into the chart below.  This is a one-stop shop for the best new albums in the world…


The Doom Chart for June 2021

Back… From France…

 

 

Back… From France…

We’ve returned almost entirely unscathed and almost completely rested. We stomped through the Champagne region and snorted all the Lavender we could find in the Provence before biking and hiking around the Gorges Du Verdon and then the Haute Savoie region near Annecy. It was a beautiful ride and it is a shame it had to end… But good things always do… And way too fast… 


Anyhoo, we’re back and almost ready for action. Only about a 1000 emails to work through and so it might take a few days before we are really active again! But luckily we’ve got the cool Reek of STOOM and Shastabeast also around and hey, they might have already jotted something down about something wonderful and awesome! 

So, keep yer eyes peeled… Your ears tuned! And your mind wide open…

zaterdag 19 juni 2021

Off to France…

 

 

Off to France…

Gonna do a little two week tour of France; will be back around the Fourth of July!