maandag 15 april 2024

Stoner HiVe’s Top 10 Most Listened Artists Last Week…


 Stoner HiVe’s
Top 10 Most Listened Artists Last Week…

Robot God
Empty Frame
Tigers On Opium
Leather Lung
Thou
Yin Yin
Eat Your Own Head
The Vice
Driftless Witches
Skraeckoedlan

Another week in the books and another one that lead me away from doing Stoner HiVe work… Unfortunately… But we all know the deal. The rent has to be payed. Still, we managed to do some Stoner HiVe fun early on in the week. With a slightly bigger version of the Doom Charts blurb for Tigers On Opium and later on the same deal for Skraeckoedlan. We published the Stoner Hype post with blurbs for the Numbers 40 to 26 of the March Doom Charts. And we reviewed Empty Frame, Eat Your Own Head and Robot God. So, I guess not a completely wasted week in the Heavy Underground. We hope to do more this week! Enjoy yours and check out the ten great releases in the list on top!


vrijdag 12 april 2024

Robot God – Portal Within

 

 

Robot God – Portal Within
Kozmik Artifactz – 2024
Rock, Psych, Space, Stoner, Prog, Fuzz
Rated: *****

Two years after the much acclaimed Worlds Collide album, the Sydney, Australia three called Robot God are back with a new release called Portal Within. Comprised out of four songs, lasting almost forty-two minutes, the album is here to take you on a journey. And even if the title suggests this will go inwards, the expansiveness of the compositions will surely make it extend outwards as well. For the four tracks are all like that free rock, long form, jam based, psychedelic and progressive rock we all adore and long for. But with a definite stonerrock and riff revering undercurrent, it also has that sweet and dusty desert vibe. Half way through that first song Long Way Round you are jogged awake out of your lovely cosmic slumber by vocals which take you down to earth and into the desert. They tell of a storm approaching, and it does, for that ending maelstrom turns the composition into a cosmic storm of gigantic proportions that seems to serve as a quick knockout punch ending. But before you get there, the seventies inspired guitar solo first, the motoring riffage that leads up to that eye of the storm, the quiet section, where the guitar solo goes bluesy and proggy all have you traversing this windswept and baking hot extremely wide landscape. Following track Illusion of Order, with six minutes on the clock, is the shortest track on the album. Strident, yet sliding vocal lines, pull you along in the song, where the majestic, low and dirty, bass work sets the scene for something atavistic stonerrock. So incredibly gritty, sandblasted and exhuming this dry heat, Illusion of Order is there for the perfect generator party. Since the title track is called Portal Within, we shall refrain from commenting where it took us. Cause we would not want to influence your journey in this case. And then there’s final track Nazare, which definitely takes me back to my time at that legendary beach in Portugal. The long straight of beach, the slow rolling waves. There were no monster waves during that time. And this nine minute track of Nazare seems to hint at those tranquil days, lounging in the sun, riding those perfect rollers. For yes, there seem to be those lovely sounds of ocean, before the guitar, with a minor Mediterranean touch, starts up. As soon as the guitar shifts in heaviness that Mediterranean also hints at a slower version of surf rock influences. And the once again the vocals, instilling their surfpoke message. Ride the wave. Take the ride. Or be sure to ride that massive one called your life. Well, and the new Robot God album Portal Within is definitely that, one hell of a ride!


(Written by JK)


Album comes out on Kozmik Artifactz, April 26th...

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woensdag 10 april 2024

Eat Your Own Head – The Trawler

 

 

Eat Your Own Head – The Trawler
Drongo Records – 2024
Rock, Punk, Noise, Metal, Math, Grunge
Rated: ***

Holy mackerel! The four from Norwich, UK called Eat Your Own Head aren’t here to cut bait, they’re here to fish! And on their new four track EP The Trawler they’re shooting fish in a barrel, when it comes to laying down noisy riffs and math like compositions. Metal is the big fish in a small pond filled with grunge, punk and something severely alternative when it comes to all the other influences. Four tracks give you more than fifteen minutes of heaviness that does not flounder. Sludgy by default, the ever changing rhythms are like a red herring always shifting in pace and tempo when you don’t expect them. But that’s what Eat Your Own Head does best, using those math influences to build something intensely noisy, yet also melodic and sometimes even practically catchy. And of course, that’s why you go out on The Trawler, to be catchy, catch, catch some huge fish. And this is so massive, it will leave you stunned like a mullet!


(Written by JK)




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Empty Frame – Underdogs

 

 

Empty Frame – Underdogs
Coma Records – 2024
Rock, Alternative, Post, Prog, Stoner
Rated: *****

I love Greece, been to many of its beautiful islands, but have unfortunately not yet visited Athens. Seeing a live show by the great The Same River alone would be worth the trip. And now there’s an extra enticement. For the five-piece going by the name of Empty Frame is also from the ancient city of Athens, and they have delivered one hell of a new album! Formed in the year of our lord 2005 they are approaching their twentieth anniversary. And with their new record Underdogs, they are releasing their fourth full-sized album. Not counting the two soundtrack albums (Heroines 2015 and Hands 2017) which they also delivered. Underdogs can be viewed as an ode to “all those people who have suffered oppression, discrimination, violence and facing their dead ends, wake up/breathe and rebel.” Underdogs is the first Empty Frame album that does not use piano, but still implores cello and violin, which is what makes Empty Frame so different. Which gives the band their very own sound, the celestial soundscape touch, the grand arc that is always present. The way they use those classic instruments and classical elements to create the heavy music they most definitely do characterizes the band in a way that very few other bands have. Eleven tracks with almost fifty minutes whisks you away on their prog rock adventure. There are more seventies rocking, psych and post rock influences and more nineties alternative touches, but all of those comes second to that cello and violin touch. Even if they are sometimes minute, they are there to lift all of the compositions to a higher plain. And so do the duo male, female vocals, perfectly complimenting each other. And don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a clean cut classic rock album. No, there is riffage here, gritty tones, excellent riffs and wild guitar work. Just take third track High Plains for instance, exceptional guitar puncturing, building and splintering whenever the composition calls for it. Those vocals, both delivering this top down ominous view as well as something that feels like a warm embrace and a refrain that could go further during live shows. The cello and violin get to shine during the middle section, and then when it all comes together, it combusts in a contained way. It sounds like the most seminal Empty Frame track on Underdogs, the one that sets the scene after those already amazing two that came before. Opener Come Undone with its overture sensibility and Ghost Town with a hint of Queens of The Stone Age. Three songs in and it’s three perfect strikes! Empty Frame!



(Written by JK)




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Skraeckoedlan – Vermillion Sky

 

 

Skraeckoedlan – Vermillion Sky
Fuzzorama Records - 2024
Stonerrock, Progressive, Fuzz, Metal, Sludge
Rated: *****

I finally got to see Skraeckoedlan again this year, at the Into The Void Festival at the Effenaar in Eindhoven, Netherlands. Those first two tracks were a huge surprise, especially the vocals. Not because we had forgotten that the sing in Swedish, but simply because live they sounded completely different. It took some time for the crowd to warm up to them it seemed, as well as the guys to warm up their vocal chords. Cause soon they started to become more familiar and like the Skraeckoedlan we’d been in love with since Äppelträdet from 2011. (An album that made it to the Number 4 spot of the Stoner HiVe Top 20 Countdown of that year, according to all the votes that came in.)  Songs from their entire discography passed by, but also their newest single: The Vermillion Sky from their then upcoming album Vermillion Sky. But before that majestic song, they premiered Mysteria, playing it for the very first time live, they said. Which was very noisy and sludgy as it washed over the crowd. Overloading all the senses and turning the entire venue into a whirling hurricane of sound. It still is on record, but it also seems to glide serenely through a Vermillion Sky as the vinyl spins. And that’s the magic of Skraeckoedlan, they can make noise and sludge sound like a thrash stampede just as easy as they can make it all feel like a soaring progressive masterpiece. And together with this album, they also released a video game and a book. They can do everything it seems. Well, they might not be as proficient in promo, otherwise it would surely have ended among the Top 3… And not just because I had them in my Top 3… Where Vermillion Sky will stay for a very long time...


(Written by JK)




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dinsdag 9 april 2024

The March 2024 Doom Charts – 40 to 26

 

 

The March 2024 Doom Charts – 40 to 26

Stoner Hype

Here we are again, collecting what we did on our little Facebook page right after the new regular edition of the Doom Charts goes online. We count down from 40 to 26 and try to type in a few words about that album or ep that makes sense to us. It’s not a review; but usually a miniscule blurb, a little sentence to entice, to hype. A Stoner Hype… Well, we collected them here to post for you in one nice little post on the blog… Because we like to keep things nice and tidy and it helps us spread the good word about them on Instagram as well…


FULL EARTH – CLOUD SCULPTORS

"We wrote a full review about Full Earth's Cloud Sculptors a few weeks ago and you can read that one by going HERE! But in short, it's a gigantic prog rock adventure. Gigantic is the most colossoal understament every in this case... "


FRANK NEVER DIES – RED MOON RISING

"Out on Argonauta Records is Frank Never Dies's new album Red Moon Rising on which the Four Italians deliver some mighty fine psychedelic rock. Off kilter, off centre and off the wall! You might get as weird and delirius as they are thanks to that Red Moon Rising!"

 

WATCHMAN – CURSED

"One man project Watchman delivered cauldron bubbling, sluggish sounding, abyssal and ominous sounding doom! Cursed is the stoner doom for the creatures that live in the deepest depths of the earth..."

 

 

SKULL SERVANT – SUMMON SORCERESS

"The first thing I thought when the new Skull Servant EP hit my ears, damn these cats are prolific! The four from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA deliver impressive quality doom rock. This time the tracks have this unholy earworm and catchy ability! Especially on that first track… So beware, once called, this Sorceress will stay with you forever… "


HIJSS – STUCK ON COMMON GROUND 

"Alternative rock, grunge, postpunk space, psych, the Italian three named hijss deliver all of that and more on their debut album STUCK ON COMON GROUND, out on Argonauta Records. They call it cosmic grunge. Garage kraut could work. Shit, you can call it loads of things, but you will have to call it AWESOME!"


HYDRA – INTO THE NIGHT  

"We mentioned it a few weeks ago, the new three song EP by the Polish four called Hydra band. Doom metal, stonerrock, sludge and roll and with such a majestic groove that you will be headbanging as that very first break commences and that groove starts and after that, you are hooked and won’t stop banging along! And then the vocals kick in, immediately taking it into proto and classic heavy metal territory. Out on Piranha Music, the three tracks on Into The Night are pure glittering metal gold!"


THE NEPTUNE POWER FEDERATION – GOODNIGHT MY CHILDREN

"Goodnight My Children is the new album by Australian power rockers The Neptune Power Federation... By no means lullabies, the eight tracks deliver highly energetic hardrock, steeped in seventies and loving the eighties! Catchy by default, they lean into power pop and harmonies as if they were driving full speed on a motorcycle towards life's next vicious curveball... The sun's out! Wake up for The Neptune Power Federation!"



PER WIBERG – THE SERPENT’S HERE 

"Per Wiberg Music's The Serpent's Here was my personal Number 1 album. Have had it on repeat for ages now. Was smitten with his early All Is Well In The Land Of The Living But For The Rest Of Us... Lights Out record from 2021 and this equals it. Prog, with loads of metal influences and an otherworldy atmosphere, cautionary, strange, mysterious and fantasy rich tales. And those eighties references through majestic key work make this one brilliant release. Epic, grandiose and with severly catchy melodies... Out on Despotz Records its another wild addition to the ever growining Per Wiberg discography!"


CANCERVO – III  

 "Cancervo's III arrived at the end of March through Electric Valley Records and give you this scuzzy and foggy doom metal. With a carpetted sound, III is an occult offering as deliberate, meticulous and slow as they come..."


SONS OF MORPHEUS – FRUITS

"We were honored to premiere the full Sons of Morpheus album a while ago. Fruits came out on the awesome Sixteentimes Music and give you all the freak blues you could possibly need this year! Amazing album! And you can read what we wrote about the album HERE! "


LÅNGFINGER – PENDULUM 

 "Långfinger's PENDULUM is a classic in every sense of the word. Out on Welfare Sounds the Swedes rampage through all those heavy rock genres of yore; and with such playful yet determined attitudes that you cannot help but listened in complete awe and marvel at all the little things they do among all those big sounds!"


THE WIZARDS – THE EXIT GARDEN 

 "Ten years after their first release the Bilbao Heavy Metal Warriors The Wizards are back with their fourth full-sized album called The Exit Garden. Their uncanny ability to merge NWOBHW with classic rock, proto metal and stoner are once again forged into eight wonderful tracks. Out on High Roller Records and filled with soulful guitar work and galloping riffs this is pure headbanging heaven!" 


EMPTY FULL SPACE – FROM THE LIMBO 

 "Stoner HiVe wrote about Empty Full Space at beginning of March and could not stop listening to the krautrock and psych and space delivered on From The Limbo. Out on Spinda Records you can check out what we wrote HERE!"


DAYTRIPPER – BOOK I: THE TRIP

"Sludge doom, droning and deliciously slow and brutish! It's Daytripper and their new Book I: The Trip album. And ofcourse Frazer Jones wrote something great about it on his Desert Psychlist, read that HERE!"


OAKFARM – OAKFARM 

 "And finally on Number 26 we find Oakfarm from Germany, and their seventies inspired self-titled album. The blues is there of course and you'll find some psychedelic touches, but for the most part we have another classic rock gem on our hands. Eight tracks that are lead by swaying melodies and a warm groove... Perfect for those leisurely summer afternoons soon to come..."


Tune in next month when we do this Stoner Hype again for the number 40 to 26 of the April Doom Charts... Live during the weekend on our little Facebook Page or afterwards when we collect them here... But for now... Go listen to all of the 40 of February if you haven't already!

maandag 8 april 2024

Tigers On Opium – Psychodrama

 

 

Tigers On Opium – Psychodrama
Heavy Psych Sounds – 2024
Hardrock, Seventies, Proto, Garage, Psych, NWOBHW, Stonerrock
Rated: ****

There’s always been something sleazy and pulp about the Tigers On Opium sound, the lyrics and the overall vibe. But on Psychodrama both those aspects get toned down in favor of a more honest and emotive approach. You might almost assume the concept of the Psychodrama album is based on their own experience with therapy. For it is a concept album about group therapy where multiple persons work through their traumas together. Yes, that sound serious. And much of the changes Tigers On Opium seemed to have worked for on this Psychodrama album, are serious. But what stayed was the hardrock, the proto touch, the seventies swagger and the garage fogginess. This time around there’s also some more metal influences that remind of the eighties when the NWOBHW exploded. Some of it is delivered so clean and serene that even that smokey sound that is so Tigers On Opium gets blown away. There have been times when Tigers On Opium was all that could get me through the night, and with Psychodrama there will be even more succor for the dark times…


(Written by JK)




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Heavy Psych Sounds


Stoner HiVe’s Top 10 Most Listened Artists Last Week…

 

Stoner HiVe’s
Top 10 Most Listened Artists Last Week…

Skraeckoedlan
Dätcha Mandala
The Nepture Power Federation
High Noon Kahuna
Frank Never Dies
Oakfarm
Watchman
Laser Eyes
Per Wiberg
Level The Compound

Another week gone! Hope everyone had an amazing weekend! Mine was damn fine, cause I got to see Desert Storm, Alabaster and Omega Sun on Saturday! Three bands that made The Jack in Eindhoven shake on its foundations. Friday was weird, cause our very own Kyle SB handled the Doom Charts edition this time around. There was this kind of phantom pain, loss or want because of it. But he did excellent! And it gave us some time to get a lot of rent paying work done. Cause there was a lot of that and not that much time for Stoner HiVe. Although we did review that awesome Carpet album, the Level The Compound debut and mentioned that wild new High Noon Kahuna single. And last but not least on Friday, a Quick Fire Friday segment filled with eight releases… So, all in all, not completely useless! But we hope to do better this week… Enjoy yours!

vrijdag 5 april 2024

The Doom Charts for March 2024

 

Doom Charts

March 2024

My god, it’s full of DOOM!

~ Dave (probably misheard quote from 2001: A Space Odyssey)


We here at the Doom Charts pride ourselves on loving all that the heavy underground has to offer. Not only doom in all its dark and deadly forms, but all the other strains of heavy and metal out there. That being said, to our sinister delight this March turns out to be an especially misbegotten month. From top to bottom, soup to nuts, Ozzy to Dio, this month’s charts are filled with DOOM! Stoner, psychedelic, classic, you name it, it’s here.

Of the hundreds of albums submitted, the one unifying thread everyone could agree upon was the mountain of madness and music that bands had to offer this March. A seemingly bottomless pit of heavy awaits to lose yourself in, and rest assured the below 40 albums are only the tip of the iceberg. Check out the individual contributor’s sites, the band’s pages, the record labels, and more to get your heavy fix.

It was weird not doing the Doom Charts this month even though I wasn't on holiday. But our very own Good Boy PR maestro Kyle SB did a wonderful job! And the result looks impeccable. It gave me more time to do other stuff and even write a blurb or two for the March Doom Charts. It's an amazing edition once again with no less than 275 albums receiving votes... Feast your ears on all that heaviness over on the Doom Charts!

Of the ones that made the March Doom Charts, I voted for: Hydra, Per Wiberg, Sons of Morpheus, Empty Full Space, The Quill, Acid Row, Tigers On Opium, Skraeckoedlan, Malsten, Clouds Taste Satanic, Full Tone Generator, Hekate, Max Boogie Overdrive, Slow Green Thing, Iota, Daevar, Karkara, Sonic Wolves, O Zorn!, Scorched Oak and Early Moods...

But as usual... We could have voted for all of them! And as usual, we will start the rundown of the Entire Top 40 over on the Stoner HiVe Facebook Page... And write a few words about Number 40 to 26... As a Stoner Hype thing! So, let's start listening to Full Earth's Cloud Sculptors which we wrote about last week... Read about Full Earth HERE!

 

Welcome to Doom Charts, representing some of the finest bloggers, journalists, radio, podcasters and 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 Charts For March 2024

Stoner HiVe’s Quick Fire Friday

 

 

Stoner HiVe’s Quick Fire Friday

It’s Bandcamp Friday! It’s the First Friday of the new month, which means, the new edition of the Doom Charts! So, why not go full tilt overload with the amount of musical tips and do a Quick Fire Friday segment! Peruse the bands below and listen to what they’ve put out! It might be your new favorite track, EP or album! And we know… There is so much out there, so much good and heavy stuff, and we just simply cannot ever do it all justice. But here it is… Another Stoner HiVe Quick Fire Friday! And it burns hot like molten lava!



Bear, Man Dangerous – Sarajevo, Nebraska

We’ve mentioned Bear, Man Dangerous before. Back when they, he, it released its American War single. And now the enigmatic project is back with a track called Sarajevo, Nebraska. Something grungy at heart, but that’s only logical when you reside in Seattle I guess… And once again filled with slowcore, shoegaze, postrock and doom. If not musically, then definitely with its ominous message of anxiety and worry about the state of America…


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Mad Coyote – The Desert Calls

Hailing from Levél, Hungary, near the three border point of Austria and Slowakia, the Mad Coyote three sport a damn cool bandname and deliver five stoner rock, stoner metal and gritty grooves on an EP called The Desert Calls. Even with the production being a bit thin, and the vocals moving from growling to a mocking tone, there’s something inherently wicked lurking in the Mad Coyote sound. Let’s keep an eye on these cats, err, I mean Coyotes!


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Earth Drive – True Passage Into The Void

My visits to Portugal and Lisbon never took met to Montijo on the other side of the Tagus river, but listening to True Passage Into The Void it seems we definitely should next time we’re there. For the Earth Drive four deliver doom, metal, progressive, ethereal and spiritual with a cosmic journey vibe. Giving it a bit of an ambient atmosphere, without ever going into that genre musically. And so many steps up from their earlier Helix Nebula album it’s scary…


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Sludgebucket – Sludgeadelic

Not longer a power trio, we can now name them the stoner metal two called Sludgebucket. And the two have re-recorded their earlier power trio songs that featured guitar and vocals as well as bass and drums as pure drum and bass instrumentals. Turning what was gnarly into something almost funky. And the wildness into groovy. Sludgeadelic is fusionadelic and that is a specific form of sludgy coolness, verve, and trippiness.


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Violet Dawn – From Basement To Dawn

The idiosyncratic opening track Amnesia on the four track From Basement To Dawn by Violet Dawn, a five-piece from Trier, Germany, is the perfect calling card for this off center psychedelic blues and alternative stoner rock band. Going from weird to wicked and from great to grandiose! As is second more languid, classic, southern and prog touched Cold Summer. Four tracks in and you are a Violet Dawn fan… Just like me!


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Teleportoise – Solar

The three track Solar by Guelph, Ontario, Canada quartet Teleportoise will come out on May 16th. That’s right, Stoner HiVe is early for once. Very early! But this could not be helped, for the three track Solar is so highly addictive. The stoner sludge, the prog metal and all its maelstrom heaviness deliver an entirely different three body problem, with tracks Dawn, Day and Dusk delving into the concept of the Earth revolving around the Sun. It’s a violent and extinction-level event translated into metal of all sorts. Mark it in your calendar, May 16th, Solar day!


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Masonic Wave – Masonic Wave

More metal, more math like structuring, completed by noise, punk and progressive rawness. Featuring members of Yakuza, Naked Raygun, God Damn Your Eyes, Land Of The El Caminos and Sybris, it’s the debut album Masonic Wave by Masonic Wave and it comes out April 12th. There’s a frenzy here and a lust for honesty and pureness. It’s break down, de-creation to an eddy whirling its bloodiness of ruckus all around you. Feel the room expand with Masonic Wave!


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Glass Beams – Mahal

They implore that Eastern vibe and atmosphere to perfection, they hail from Melbourne, Australia and are called Glass Beams. Their psychedelic world music, warm to the touch and so entirely welcoming. But you already knew that! That touch of disco, the Indian elegance, jazz age mystery and beautiful instrumentation is pristine and has been rocking your world ever since they released their Mirage album in 2021. But did you hear the new five track EP Mahal yet? Or did you see the Mahal video yet? Go for it… It will make you feel good…


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