For starters, I’m not sorry for avoiding posting for the last three months or so. The following is an explanation of why.
I live in a rural area of Southern Ontario. Our climate is the classic Canadian hodgepodge of almost comfortable summers and intolerably cold winters.
From just about November through to April, the outside world becomes a rather nasty place. Howling maelstroms of snow and deep-set frosts that nip at your heels like a pack of starving wolves, it is not a hospitable time to spend outside. (Yeah I’m fucking exaggerating. It’s still damn cold.)
Come late April, a rather wonderful thing happens; the frigid temperature snaps like brittle bone and the snow begins to melt away to reveal all sorts of wonderful colours. Well, mostly brown, grey and green-tinged yellow as the continental amount of road salt and sand starts to get washed away into our soil, creeks and lakes. But I digress.
Generally speaking, acoustic albums tend be laughably bad, either being a horrible collection of romantic ballads or half-assed campfire songs. As such, I never really pay attention whenever I see one being released. Until I saw King Buzzo himself was releasing one, then I paid attention.
Without jerking the guy off more than he already gets, King Buzzo is a fucking monster of a guitarist, driving both grunge and sludge metal along from the underground for the better part of three decades. His style is all strummed burl, with very little fancy picking or solos to be found. The man churns out riffs with a strange tenacity that seems to have only gotten better with age.
“This Machine Kills Artists” is his first acoustic album, only him and a classic wooden clunker. One might think it strange to hear the driving force behind some of heavy music’s most distorted and jarring riffs to be behind the helm of a much more delicate instrument, wondering how in the hell his style would translate mediums. I can assure you, it translates fucking perfectly.
The sound is something resembling acid folk but can’t really be nailed down to any one musical camp, a Buzzo trademark at this point. His playing style and the acoustic create a strange but delicious sound that is equal parts eerie and aggressive. Jangled and rough-hewn, the riffs are churned out with the kind of force you would expect, leaving me to wonder what the hell they reinforced his guitar with.
I’m only halfway through the stream now and have to start getting ready for work tomorrow, so this won’t be a full review. More of me just wanting to tell people to go listen while they can because these are some damn good tunes.
Stream right here at Dangerous Minds.
Bateman are a pretty fucking weird animal. An Australian band, “SMUT” is their debut album and is a completely off-kilter assembly of thrash, hardcore punk and feral howling. It’s not trendy or fashionably heavy, it’s mean and filthy, like a rabid coyote rolling in fresh roadkill.
The first thing that will definitely be polarizing to most listeners is the vocals. They are very unique to say the least, with some of the heavier growls resembling traditional metal vocals while the shouts/barks are such a weird but pissed-off tone, it catches you completely off guard. It takes a couple tracks to get used to, but it gives Bateman their own special form of burl.
Musically, “SMUT” is handled in the best way possible; heavy, loud and loose. There is a very apparent lack of polish, with nary a tailored edge or shined boot in sight. Bateman are the unstable guy on the subway shouting obscenities at the Dentyne Ice poster and smelling like booze and week-old hot dogs. Scabs, boils and leaking blisters form a caustic crust that only gets penetrated by the equally corrosive riffage.
Their metallic tone keeps a consistent form across the entire record, with all the songs lying in the same region of sonic velocity as the others. There aren’t any major slowdowns and left-hooks, just plenty of spittle-spewing screams and nasty guitar lines.
“SMUT” is name-your-price on Bandcamp and I was a month and a half late finishing this review. My bad. Music?
So like, summer hit me pretty fucking hard.
Work from 6 – 2:30 or 8 – 5, then run around building things, breaking things, drinking things, eating things or riding things. The causalities of all this? Sleep and internet time.
I’m still jamming music pretty much all the time but what I don’t have time for is finding new stuff and writing words about it. The internet is the first thing that gets the hacksaw when the sun comes out so the next couple months will be quite sparse.
I’ll still drop some reviews when the rain turns sideways, so maybe like once or twice a month. Consider this a graduation sabbatical.
So yeah. BACK TO THE FUTURE.
Buying random $5 records has been yielding some damn good treasures, such as this ten minute B-side jam from Rare Earth.
Tumbleweed Dealer are a Montreal-based post-stoner band whose music I talked about both here and here. Their sound is all dead cowboys, dark skies, hostile deserts and whole damn fuckton of weed smoke.
They have a new record coming out near the end of this May and have released a track in celebration of that coming date. A re-recording of a song from their demo, “Resurrected Yet Again”, gets a fresh Tumbleweed Dealer treatment, with re-worked grooves and crisp instrumentation fleshing things out from the first draft.
The track also comes with a sick poster courtesy of Alexandre Goulet, which absolutely nails the whole evil-desert, mummified cowboy theme that the music brings to mind. A slow, cyclical march to a freshly dug grave, with unsteady footsteps in the sand leading off into the distance.
You can give the track a gander below and use it as some background music to get started rolling joints for the full album release coming later this month.
Tumbleweed Dealer Facebook
I’M DONE EXAMS.
IN THEORY, THESE WILL BE THE LAST EXAMS I WRITE AND I WILL GRADUATE IN JUNE. IN THEORY.
SO EXCUSE ME FOR THE NEXT COUPLE DAYS WHILE I FIRST GET OVER THIS COLD, THEN GET REALLY, REALLY, REALLLLLLLLLLY FUCKING DRUNK.
NEW CONTENT WILL BE COMING IN MAAAAAAAAYYYYYY.
NOOO SUGAR TONIIIGHHHHTTTTT
The shit disturbers that make up the NY hardcore band Trash Talk are gearing up to release their newest album, “NO PEACE” on May 27th. The first track to be released from the album, “Cloudkicker”, is streaming right below.
Grizzly as fuck, drenched in sweat and spittin’ blood. Trash Talk always manage to conjure a tough-as-nails sound in their grooves and “Cloudkicker” is no exception. It’s got a slightly weird background-groan chorus but past that, it rips shit and that’s all you need to know.
On a related note, I recently got to see these guys live at the Opera House in support of Dillinger Escape Plan. Fucking good show. From the first song the singer was in the middle of the pit conducting orchestrated chaos surrounded by colliding bodies. Badass moment of the night was him telling the entire audience to sit down and light up while they played “Hash Wednesday”. Spliffs were circulated while we all parked our asses on a beer-stained floor. Props to the Opera House for not being fascists and trying to shut it down.
Rarely a month goes by without a review being written about a band that is meshing previously estranged styles and carving their own little niche in the heavy music world. It has been interesting to observe this trend from the aspect of a music writer, seeing bands from all corners of the world experiment with different styles in similar manners. It is a musical movement just like all of the others that came before and has been yielding some of the most interesting, dynamic and heavy music to date.
Telepathy is a band who have been perfecting their own experiments in the dark basements of the UK, culminating in their debut album, “12 Areas”. While a lot of bands I have written about recently have been doping sludge with vicious elements of hardcore, noise and punk, Telepathy take a slightly more regal approach, mixing in major elements of progressive and post metal to their crushing concoction.
Let’s just clear this out right now. “12 Areas” is a fucking good album. Actually scratch that, it’s fucking good. A balanced onslaught of downtuned grooves and grandiose instrumentation, sounding not unlike a combination of Vildhjarta and Russian Circles. Telepathy’s sound is majestically threatening like an arctic hurricane boiling across the ice, leaving behind frozen carcasses and ruined homes.
Let’s slow things right down, dust off the denim vests and rip some massive bong hits in preperation for the newest Dopelord album, “Black Arts, Riff Worship & Weed Cult” (wee bit wordy eh?). Extensive album titles aside, this is the follow up to their 2012 release, “Magick Rites”, and stays right in the same vein of slow-noddin’, monolithic sludge that Satan likes to unwind to.
The first thing to hit is is the FUZZ. Lots and lots and lots of fuzzzzzzzzzzz. Their riffs are drenched in all the glorious fuzz, clogging up your brain like the smoke in your lungs that first time you hot-boxed your friends car in a 7-11 parking lot. This is important, as the fuzz is equally responsible for luring you into a half-awake trance as the riffs are. It massages your brain, filling all of the nooks and crannies of your conscious with reverberating white noise.
One key to really enjoying any sludge album is volume. Maximum fucking volume and a heavy addition of bass make the experience all that more enjoyable, as Dopelord lay down their weighty grooves and the reverb through the wall drives your roommate insane. Their grooves pack the force of a herd of rhinos, marching forward with malevolent purpose, wreathed in smoke and dark skies.
Lazy as all fuck this week. All the official assignments are handed in, so now I can get to the unofficial, yet way more fun, reviews.
Lady Flint are a French blues rock duo who released their debut album during February of this year. A tried and true guitar/voc and drummer tag-team, they crank out sleazy little ditties about sex, drugs, booze and the problems they entail. Ragged around the edges and just a little loose in execution, this is perfect bootstomp-n-hollar roadhouse music.
A recipe for good blues rock can be broken down into three key ingredients; riffs, guitar/vocal tone and the backbone groove. Two of the three are the bare minimum for good tunes and nailing the trio puts you into righteous territory. While Lady Flint may not have hit the hat-trick yet, they have got themselves well on the right path to realizing that goal.