SPACESLUG ‘Eye The Tide’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.

Taking the journey by ‘slug through this Polish doomscape can prove to be quite an epic trip. Cruising in from the Outer Rim Territories to settle in Wroclaw, and in the wake of stark politico-anarchic punk/rock of ‘80’s brutal communist regime, where skinhead gangs were often encouraged by government agents to attack the punks at gigs, citing them as “enemies of The Peoples’ Democracy”, the broad expanses of this LP are the antithesis of the dark times and violence in Poland’s past. Not sure if there are any remnants of the agro political attack left behind in Spaceslug’s lyrics.

‘Obsolith’, with its dark crusty bass and droned vocals is the first leg of this trip. Spaceslug don’t wanna play 2.5 minute pop songs, and this is no different. 8 minutes of doomy drone. And don’t get any ideas about vocal hooks to latch onto. There ain’t a hook to be heard. Continue reading

El Colosso – Not Drowning, Touring… Part 1 of 4…

We’re lucky enough to have Koops, El Colosso vocalist, submitting a tour diary while they’re away on their European tour. We wish them all the best! Thanx Koops and El Colosso! – Ed.

In another few days the band that I sing in – El Colosso – is traveling to Europe for its first international tour. First tour of anywhere, actually. We haven’t toured Australia yet, apart from a few gigs in Ballarat, Bendigo and Frankston.

We’re heading off to play twenty-odd shows in thirty-odd days, promoting our debut album Pathways, taking in Germany, Slovakia, Belgium, France and Spain. It’s a tour that doesn’t just involve a crap-ton of money and a big flight to get there, but also a kind of leap-of-faith to remove ourselves from our families and jobs and commit to really living rock and roll every night for more than a month in a different city every day, in rooms full of perfect strangers, 14,000 kilometres away from everything we know.

Not fucking fantastic being away from our families though. In truth, that totally sucks.

Preparing for the tour has been a lot of work, but huge fun. We’ve not just stepped up rehearsals for the many weeks leading up to it, we’ve also been preparing new songs for our next record. AND we’ve also had the opportunity to play at The Forum, supporting South African band Seether. How many times have we all been at that venue and dared to dream of one day playing there? We were like kids in candy stores. Or just like the big bloody kids we really are playing at the Forum! But the new album is written, we are super-tight with our tunes, and all that remains is for us to get there and show a different part of the world what we can do. Continue reading

BRYAN GILES (RED FANG) Interview.

Interview Will Oakeshott.

Musicians expanding their horizons outside of their accomplished art-form has been a rather prevalent occurrence for quite some time. Whether film, television, fashion, business or any other avenue, it has been a movement that countless musicians have ventured toward with varying levels of success. For Oregon’s Stoner Metal band Red Fang, the quartet has somewhat followed suit by joining forces with Teutonic Wine Company, also from Portland, to create a European style red wine blend entitled “Red Fang Red”. As guitarist and vocalist Bryan Giles explains, the scenario came together rather organically:

“The winery is called ‘Teutonic’ and they are a local Portland small winery and they are just really into heavy metal and making wine.” He describes relatively straightforward – “They contacted us to see if we wanted to make a wine with them which we were understandably interested in doing, even though I don’t really know much about wine, but it sounded like a fun experience. We did actually go pick grapes, bottled the wine, corked the wine and sorted the vines around the vineyard. Sadly though, we had to kill all the ladybugs.” Continue reading

JOHN GARCIA (Kyuss / Slo Burn / Unida / Vista Chino) Interview.

Interview El Jefe.

After thirty odd years playing music, with the heavily influential Kyuss through Slo Burn, Unida and Hermano as well as a couple of solo projects, John Garcia, is well known to those into stoner / desert rock. His vocal style is often imitated (or at least attempted!), and the musical output is of a consistently high quality as well. Garcia is about to tour Australia in acoustic mode for the first time, and will be playing selections from his entire back catalogue. I recently spoke with John to get a run-down on what’s in store for the tour.

El Jefe – What’s your inspiration for choosing the songs you want to tackle acoustically, and how do you decide what might work best?

John Garcia – Well, to start with, I dig the challenge of doing things in a totally different way and to keep moving forward musically. Some songs like ‘Green Machine’, which work well with a full band can be much harder to do acoustically, so there is the challenge to make it work with just a guitar which is really cool. ‘Gardenia’ as well, is much harder to do this way, so it means I have to keep pushing the boundaries musically. ‘El Rodeo’ is just a rad song, and really fun to play, and with a tune like ‘Space Cadet’, I get to change a couple of the things with the vocals I didn’t like with the original. Continue reading

SCOTT RUSSO (UNWRITTEN LAW) Interview + Tour Info.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.

When Californian Skies are forecast to meet Australian shores: an interview with Unwritten Law’s Scott Russo.

As Scott Russo answers the phone, he’s having several other conversations with those in the lounge room. It’s 1pm in San Francisco and the people from immigration have arrived an hour early to complete his paper work for Unwritten Law’s upcoming tour of Australia. After an initially jolted introduction, we settle into the exchange of questions and stories related to the bands future, past and present.

With the frontman’s paperwork currently in process, we nostalgic punters Down Under have a lot to be excited for. With the beginning of their scheduled tour dates quickly approaching, we know that we can anticipate their 1998 self titled album AKA The Black Album in full, but what else?! Despite the fact that I may be considerably too young to be an old-school fan, I couldn’t hold back my excitement when it came to asking Scott, “So, what can you expect? Well, we’re gonna play the Black Record from front to back, the first song to the last song, and then we are gonna break down that set and play additions.” Continue reading

KING PARROT ‘Ugly Produce’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.
Band photo Rod Hunt.

Melbourne grind core / yobcore legends King Parrot have unleashed their third LP, a character building behemoth called Ugly Produce. The moniker suits the album to a T! It’s a bruising and relentless collection of blast-beats from drummer Todd Hansen, searing guitars and guttural, tortured vocal mayhem.

‘Entrapment’ is used as the launchpad for the sonic time bomb that follows. The two jackhammers fucking rhythmic attack delivers a powerful impetus for the blaze of guitars and Matt Young’s crazed vocal “styling’s”.

Who but an Aussie band could write a tune called ‘Piss Wreck’. Spell check won’t even recognize it as English, but we all know someone who should embrace this song as a personal anthem. It’s a cool song too. Continue reading

EL COLOSSO ‘Pathways’ Album Review.

Words Mark Ireland.

Immediacy is the first word that come to mind as soon as the track ‘Doom Boogie’ drops first on the El Colosso album, Pathways. Its relentless riffs never let go, vocalist Matt Cooper is an absolute powerhouse monster of a singer, reminiscent of all my favourite singers from the last 20 years; Layne Staley, Chris Cornell and a million other in between his pitch and range are out of this world, he holds the words in such taut tight control, that you become breathless in awe.

The single ‘Leatherhead’ is a perfect first release, its groove heavy rhythm will have you punching holes in the walls and screaming with ecstatic pleasure.

‘The Hunted’ just pulverises your ears until a river of blood is flowing.

The title track ‘Pathways’, has more ridiculously heavy riffling that entrances you so deep that not even a trained hypnotist could wake you up! Continue reading

MENTAL TREMORS Self-Titled Album Review.

Words Mark Ireland.

Brand new to the Melbourne music scene, Mental Tremors hit the ground running. They released their self-titled debut and within a couple of weeks they were signed to European DIY label Cursed Tongue. It’s easy to hear why they were signed to a label so quickly, as soon as the cat scratch riff of ‘Like A Broken Town’ kicks in, the listener is body slammed against the floor and spends the next five and half minutes trying to compose themselves and left wondering what the hell just happened.

‘Bastard Son’ slows the tempo down slightly; the drums penetrate deep and hard with an ongoing hypnotic groove.

Considering the band is only a duo it’s hard to fathom the racket they make, a wall of sound is built high above the listener and smashed down around their ears with an almighty force. Continue reading

MEATHOOK Self-titled Debut EP Review.

Words Anthony Moore.

It’s always hard when someone you know asks you to review their band. It could be awesome… but what if it just isn’t your thing? or even worse, what if it’s shit?  So when Andy Simpson of the legendary Don Fernando sent me a message and asked if I could listen to his new project Meathook, I thought I would do the usual thing of sending it on to someone else, but then I clicked on play…

So all you Tool fans who have been waiting 612 years for a new release, ‘The Beginning’ kicks off with an intro that would slot perfectly into Undertow, with riffs straight from the Blues For The Red Sun mixing desk, and a solo that goes on for miles; the song steamrolls across the great expanse covering everything from hard edged stoner to doom and all in between. There are no lyrics, no words, just like this review, nothing could truly describe the sound of this track, except that ‘The Beginning’ is the perfect introduction to Meathook, which will string you up by your ears and make them bleed for more. Continue reading