RED FANG ‘Only Ghosts’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

Red Fang. I hadn’t heard of them, but caught most of their set on a couple of years back when they shared a bill with Kyuss Lives and Orange Goblin. Pretty rockin’ I thought. Raunchy, distorted, abrasive. Loud and nasty. My kinda filth, and an excellent warm-up for both OG and Kyuss too.

Ten or eleven years into their existence, this Portland quartet are not taking the foot off the pedal and coasting. The new LP, Only Ghosts is a down and dirty mud-ride plum fulla mangled guitars, drums having the shit beaten outta them and stomach pump bass riffs. The road rash vocals are handled by guitarist Bryan Giles, while bassist Aaron Beam keeps things on the straight and narrow. Combined, they add an excellent depth to the whole shitstorm of sonic dementia. Continue reading

SALEM’S BEND Self-Titled Debut Album Review.

Words Adam Cooper.

When I first received the debut album from Salem’s Bend, I wasn’t sure what to expect. A three piece from the City of Angels conjured up pre conceived notions of what I thought LA was about. What I heard upon first listen was something totally different.

I actually thought I’d been visited by the ghost of Phil Lynott and he’d become mates with Fu Manchu, Blue Cheer and King Crimson. They were in a smoke filled share house, kicking back, head nodding to each other whilst appreciating the beauty of Led Zeppelin 4.

The opening track ‘Balshazzar’ sets the tone for a late ’60s early / ’70s fuzz-a-thon which continues throughout the seven track offering. Continue reading

ADAM HARDING (DUMB NUMBERS) Interview + Album Review.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.

Dumb Numbers are back with their latest collaborative showcase that has been self-titled; Dumb Numbers II. Following their 2013 album, this gem was released to the public via Joyful Noise Recordings on August 19. Predominantly formulated by Australian musician, Adam Harding who was joined by a variety of artists, this album of only eight songs has without a doubt created a rad selection of lengthy and transient jams. Joining Harding on this recent release were the ever-alternating line up of musicians that on this occasion included the likes of: Lou Barlow (Dinosaur Jr. / Sebadoh), Dale Crover (Melvins), David Yow (The Jesus Lizard / Scratch Acid), Murph (Dinosaur Jr.), Bobb Bruno (Best Coast). With each musician bringing their own little zing to the sound, it inevitably has turned into this crazy array of genres that make it quite hard to label, adding to the bonus of how enticing this album actually is. Continue reading

WO FAT ‘Midnight Cometh’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

Wo Fat. A behemoth stoner blues band from Texas.

It must be something in the whiskey. Dallas has delivered some absolute monster bands over the years. (See a review here of WF buddies Mothership for further evidence of this HERE) Which brings me to Wo Fat. I’d bought a couple of their early albums, and always dug ‘em but they then managed to slip under my radar. Until now! Midnight Cometh, which is their fifth studio release (to go with a live record and a coupla split releases) recently landed in my inbox, and straight outta the gate, it impressed the fuck outta me. Continue reading

MT. MOUNTAIN ‘Cosmos Terros’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

They were raised in a lost city called Perth that can be found somewhere on the edge of time. And with them they brought Cosmos Terros, an LP that may have been hewn from stone. The band is spacerock quintet Mt Mountain and they have truly delivered an epic LP with Cosmos Terros. Droning, sitar-like guitars, single note organ lines, and a slow but insistent rhythmic throb paint the songs in unknowable hues. This is a slowly told collection of mind-warping tales etched in ancient characters on the undercarriage of a prehistoric UFO so they could be carried across all the universes and into eternity.

‘Seek The Sun’ and ‘Pass On’ bookend a record that is a seamless journey through
gargantuan and dreamlike riffs that ebb and flow like a tide. And they easily spill from one song to the next. ‘Diablo’ has some gently leached slide guitar that hauls it home to the inevitable conclusion. Continue reading

GOZU ‘Revival’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

Gozu. I’m guessing this is Japanese for “hardhitting stoner four-piece from Boston”. Flashy guitars, hyperactive drumming, thunderous bassplaying and a booming powerhouse vocalist to cap it all off is what we’re dealing. The songs are strong, and awesomely gritty too.

Marc Gaffney’s supreme vocal prowess hints at Ian Astbury and occasionally Chris Cornell and are both soulful and rockin’. Musically, they display alot of originality with lotsa chunk and some well balanced with melody too. Doug Sherman is a riffmaster when he gets his paws on his guitar, and more than ably backed up by the rhythm section comprised of Joe Grotto on bass and Mike Hubbard on drums. Continue reading

THE ARCHAIC REVIVAL ‘Rock n Roll Holocaust’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

Sydney’s stoner-metal rock and roll freaks The Archaic Revival have finally paid off their debt to Satan. And so Satan has now handed over the master copy of Rock n Roll Holocaust, the debut LP by the trio. If you’ve ever caught the live show, you’ll have a fairly good fucking idea of the Pandora’s (music) Box you’re about to open. And the good news is the band has a lot to say musically, but never repeat themselves.

While there’s no doubting the genre of Rock n Roll Holocaust, there are plenty of nods to everything from rockabilly to ‘70s funk that flavor the tunes and lead the band away from being easily typecast. That said, this record is totally balls-out rock!

‘Black Hole City’ and ‘Drug House’ lay some sturdy foundations. Lucky for us too, ‘cos you’re gonna need something to hang onto for the rest of this trip! Continue reading

BLUES PILLS: ZACK ANDERSON Interview + Lady In Gold Review.

Words El Jefe.

BluesPills2016d_1200x800Based in Sweden, but drawing members from the States, and France as well as Sweden, Blues Pills present as diverse a lineage as their musical influences. Bassist Zack Anderson took the time to speak to me about the new LP, Lady In Gold.

El Jefe: Could you tell me a bit about the new record, recording experiences around it and how you approached it differently to the first LP?

Zack Anderson: The first one was a bit easier due to the fact that we already had the songs written. This time around, we were touring all the time and didn’t have many opportunities to stop and write. Because of this, we also had to work a lot harder to get it together. So the writing process was a lot slower. We’d go into the studio and put a few things down at a time and gradually add to it. This was done over about two years. But the actual recording process was much the same as the first record. We used the same studio and engineer, just spent more time writing and recording. And because the songs were a lot more diverse and had moved away a bit from the late ‘60s / early ‘70s blues rock of the first record, we were a bit worried about how this one would be received. We’ve introduced a lot of soul and Motown, and even folk. Elin (Larsson – vocals) is a huge Aretha Franklin fan (no surprises there! EJ) and added a lot of this into her vocals. So far, everyone has been really positive about it. Continue reading

SPACEJUNK ‘Bite Your Tongue’ LP Review and Gig Launch info.

Words Joel Parnell.

Webster’s Dictionary defines ‘Space’ as “The region beyond the earth’s atmosphere or beyond the solar system” and ‘Junk’ as “Slang: Male genitalia”. These definitions withstanding, the latest offering from Melbourne scuzz-rock quartet Spacejunk is every bit as confronting, fun and perversely entertaining as a thousand half-erect penis’s flailing and jostling wildly in zero-gravity.

Spacejunk’s recorded work plays out a lot like their live set. They pretty much throw you straight in the deep end, no fucking around with softly plucked intros and shit. The atmosphere grows thick in an instant, engulfing you in a fog of violent, chaotic noise. The deep, hellish hum of bass turns your skin to fuzz as the piercing squeal of the band’s collective feedback challenges even the most seasoned of gig-goers to a battle between amp and ear-drum. Under this haze, however, you will find a great deal of musicianship on display. The drum work in particular, is stellar. Sweat drips from every pore of the four-headed rock monster as it thumps, screeches and bellows through the motions of it’s 40-odd minute tirade. Continue reading

BRIGHT CURSE ‘Before The Shore’ Album Review.

Words Paddy Regester.

Judging things by their cover is bad. It’s fickle. It’s shallow. It’s unfair. And, more often than not, it’s wrong. But God damn is it fun.

So, let’s take the new album from the UK stoner-rock trio Bright Curse.

Before the Shore has a pretty damn fine cover. Three guys, who I’m sure wont be offended if I call them wizards, are beckoning towards the heavens where a big old bird triumphantly swoops down from the snow-capped peaks illuminated by a rare break in the seemingly impenetrable clouds. And all this “before the shore” of a pristine lake high in the mountains. Hot damn.

The beauty of this cover is that it doesn’t just look awesome; it tells you exactly what’s in store for you in the next 45 minutes. It’s powerful, in depth and beautiful. Continue reading