CRYSTAL SPIDERS ‘Molt’ LP Review.

Words El Jefe.

Molt starts with a primitive, grinding bassline that creeps outta the speakers, and oozes across the floor. The sound is akin to a huge, lurching monolithic machine that gently crushes all in its path, like some kinda doom-powered Sandcrawler.

Crystal Spiders is a side-side project of Brenna Leath (The Hell No, Lightning Born) who handles the low end, guitar and vocals. Tradd Yancey (Thirsty Curses) beats things with sticks, contributes some vocals and also plays drums in this dynamic duo. The band play some hefty, Sab-influence lo-fi doom. But then again, who hasn’t been influenced by Tony and co? Well. Maybe Patsy Cline, but let’s not hold that against her. She’s alright! The songs are eclectic, potent and charged with a liquid maniacal edge that easily drew me into its’ shimmering web.

‘Trapped’ is some meaty grind, and a classic opener, although title tune ‘Molt’ does kick things up a notch, touching on a slightly more Detroit-ish kinda riffarama. Across the whole shebang, the playing is tight and effective, with a plethora of chunky riffs and squalling guitars to add flesh to the bones. With Brenna’s roaring vocals, you have the final piece of the puzzle to bind the sound together.

Brenna lured Lightning Born co-conspirator Mike Dean (Corrosion of Conformity) in to lend a hand on the production of Molt, and the result is thick, fuzzy and with a distinctive primal, lo-fi howl. Throw in some spooky, ethereal tracks like ‘Fog’ and the drum and vox ‘Headhunters’, and you’ve got a cool timewarp back to the ‘70s for your next nude Twister on acid shindig. It’s a whole bunch of fun, and just to keep you on ya toes, got more sides than that Gemini ex who keeps stalking you. Go on, if you try it, you’ll like it!

Crystal Spiders Molt is available now through Ripple Music HERE.
Crystal Spiders: Facebook / Bandcamp // Instagram.

BUTTERFLY ‘Doorways Of Time’ LP Review.

Words El Jefe.

In this foul year of our lord 1347, a vile black pestilence has blanketed our land, destroyed our crops, decimated our farm beasts and carried many of our people to the other side. Our leaders have taken to behaving more like jesters whence holding court, and the frozen air we breathe rains a disease that settles in the lungs and suck life from all those exposed to it.

But all is not lost; a band of minstrels, veterans of many a campaign, have arrived, seemingly through a Doorway Of Time, in our once glorious land and taken up arms against our foes, battling all with a powerful lust to destroy the sinners and restore our paradise to its former glory.

Butterfly is the new band for a hardened handful of rock and metal veterans (members spending time in bands like Abremalin, Earth, Mass Confusion, Hobbs Angel of Death). They have a neat line in heavy rock’n’roll, with shades of Blue Oyster Cult, early ‘70’s folk music and a cauldron full of “meat and potatoes” metal, screaming dual solos and chunky vocals, this band of minstrels have got most of their bases covered. Continue reading

BLUES PILLS ‘Holy Moly’ Album Review + Elin Larsson Interview.

Words / Interview El Jefe.
Photos Patric Ullaeus.

If you’re a fan of heavy psych-rock with big, clean femme vox and you haven’t already checked out Blues Pills, I’d suggest their third LP, Holy Moly wouldn’t be a bad place to get on board.

Blues Pills are now approaching ten years old (they grow up so fast!), and, as bands tend to, have had a couple of personnel changes. Founding members Elin Larsson and Zack Anderson remain, with Zack recently switching to guitar to accommodate the departure of original guitarist Dorian Sorriaux. Long time drummer André Kvarnström now has Kristoffer Schander as his rhythm section “partner in crime” and the pair do a mighty fine line in rnr too.

‘Proud Woman’, a tune whose lyrical content is much needed in this day and time stamped a hefty footprint on the colour and tone of Holy Moly. Ripping vocals, some sweet gospel-esque b/v’s, raunchy and riff-heavy, it’s a driving thunderous tune.

Continue reading

WOODY WEATHERMAN (CORROSION OF CONFORMITY) Interview.

Words & Interview El Jefe.

Corrosion Of Conformity have been a heavy rock mainstay for close to 40 years now (albeit whilst going on “hiatus” a couple of times over the course of their existence), starting life in North Carolina as a hardcore band before settling into their Sabbath-fueled grooves and (amidst a variety of line-up changes) cranking out a bunch of excellent LP’s.

2020 sees the band, once more playing as a 4 piece with original members Woody Weatherman (lead guitar – the only constant member of COC), Mike Dean (bass) and Reed Mullin (drums) as well as long-time member Pepper Keenan (rhythm guitar, vocals) who spent some time away from the band but recently rejoined them just in time to record the bands tenth LP, titled No Cross No Crown. Continue reading

TEMPTRESS Self-Titled EP.

Words El Jefe.

So one arvo in Dallas, these girls and guy sat down to kill some time and play some music, and wound up with a living breathing rock’n’roll band. Gotta love it when it just works! Sounding like the bastard spawn of Sabbath and the ‘head, with some hefty doses of down’n’dirty Motor City punk rock and roll. Temptress wasted no time in recording their self-titled debut. Released in June 2019, it’s a fun-loving approach to music with a solid set of tunes thrown in.

My fave of the three track, ‘Ride Of Your Life’ is a chunky riff-fest and the guys have kindly also produced a fitting filmclip to go with it, delving into B-movie Hammer Horror clip, lacking somewhat in T&A but replete with identical twins (Siamese woulda won the band a solid 10/10 from me but c’est la vie)! Continue reading

LIGHTNING BORN ‘Lightning Born’ LP Review.

Words El Jefe.

So.

I find in my Inbox an LP by Lightning Born. Lightning Born, Lightning Born… Something pings in my memory, and I recall reading about these guys a few months back, and thinking they’d be worth checking out if the opportunity presented itself. Which it has now done.

I’m loath to call Lightning Born a SUPERGROUP, despite being comprised of members of bands of varying degrees of notoriety. But I will say this, there are bands, and there are BANDS. You see them play, and think to yourself “Fuck me, this ain’t just another bunch of dudes fucking around!” There’s something else happening. It’s an elusive element, and you cannot fake it, if it ain’t there, it will never exist. And sometimes it’s just for a short time, and when you blink, it’s gone. But other times it lives forever. I’m not sure which category Lightning Born will find themselves in come Judgment Night, but for the time being, we’ve got a genuine gold-plated motherfucker of an album to latch onto. Continue reading

RUFF MAJIK ‘Tårn’ LP Review.

Words El Jefe.

So South Africa ain’t got the same rep as say, Sweden, when it comes to producing heavy-duty, fuzzed out stoner riffarama. Certainly, there could be a hidden vein just waiting to be tapped, and I just haven’t realised it yet. And maybe, having been impressed after just a couple of listens to Tårn, the new LP by Ruff Majik, I might do just that.

Ruff Majik are a classic kinda power-trio, and in true power trio style, they all know their lines, and kick the tune right in the guts at just the right time whilst pushing the drive hard. They sound good as a band too. Sometimes playing ability ain’t everything, ya know?

Some pretty guitar lead us into ‘Schizophrenic’, which is quickly followed up with some thumping drums and an almost speed metal kind riff. Continue reading

DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL. Flemington, Melbourne. 11-03-2019.

Words Anthony Moore.
Photos Zo Damage.

After a hit movie, making the sequel usually comes with a lot of extra pressure to perform and live up to the standards of the first. With Download Festival, add onto that the even greater pressure of taking over from where Soundwave left off in the heavy music category, and the comparisons it will bring being at the same location with similar lineups. From gates opening though, Download (the sequel) looked certain to be a hit at the ‘box office’. Continue reading

AQUAMAN Movie Review – Palace Nova Eastend, Adelaide.

Words Will Oakeshott.
Thank you to Palace Nova Eastend, Adelaide.

According to an interview with Metal Hammer Magazine, Aquaman star Jason Momoa revealed that he utilised music by Black Sabbath, Metallica’s ‘Kill ‘Em All’ album and Tool’s Ticks And Leeches to inspire him to become the character Arthur Curry and superhero. Upon reflection, these sources of motivation became rather evident throughout the film; it’s hard-hitting, bullish, wandering and a little bizarre.

The film is unquestionably the “introduction” to Aquaman and director/movie story cowriter James Wan has maintained a comic book authenticity with this project which is both remarkable and a bit corny to the film’s atrophy – do not become dismissive though, there is a lot of fun in this 140-minute-plus extravaganza.

It is very much a multi-player story, certainly the focus is Arthur Curry, his beginnings and birth into a multiverse existence (so to speak) as the son of Atlanna, The Queen Of Atlantis (Nicole Kidman) and humble lighthouse keeper Thomas Curry (Tempera Morrison). Logically, it progresses to Arthur’s discovery of his powers and subsequent training by Nuidis Vulko (Willem Dafoe) then obligation to protect both worlds he grows to become a saviour for and in terms of Atlantis, the King. 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