StoneRider and more classic goodness

Happy Valentines day if that’s what floats your boat. Only good thing about today is there’s new Beneath the Massacre which will get mentioned next Monday, but right now I’m here to tell you about StoneRider and their breed of awesome.

I stumbled on these guys while flipping through Youtube videos at random. After a couple wrong turns I finally ended up with some damn good riffage pumping through my speakers. Hailing from Atlanta, StoneRider bring classic, foot stompin’ riffs and good times. Taking cues from all the classic bands before them, the best way to describe their sound would be more of a straight rock ‘n’ roll Graveyard. Not much blues to speak of, just straight cut and pure rock.

They released their first full length, “Three Legs of Trouble” in 2008 and currently have their second album, “Fountains Left to Wake” scheduled to drop on the 28th of this month. Both albums are full of exactly the type of music we like here at the Church. Big, ballsy and full of swagger, head noddin’, beer drinkin’ kinda shit. It’s sunny day music and most definitely worth plugging into your ears.

I’ve got some songs from the first album as well as a Bandcamp stream of the teaser for the upcoming release (Look for a feature soon after). Get some!

StoneRider Facebook

StoneRider Bandcamp


Stoner Train and sluts for rebels

I really like the Big Lebowski, I would never advise watching it sober but under the right circumstances it’s downright hilarious. Also Jeff Bridges is awesome.

So you can imagine my delight when I was trawling Bandcamp to find a song entitled “Big Lebowski” by the Russian country stoner band know as Stoner Train. If someone had told me 3 dudes from Moscow would have made southern fried music with a banjo, harmonica, guitar and drum kit, I would have called you a crazy person and proceeded to run the other way. However, this is exactly what Stoner Train brings to the table.

First of all, they have a full time harmonica player, how badass is that? The tunes are all solid, foot stompin’ southern shitkickers. A big meaty guitar riff and hammering bass drum provide the backbone while the harmonica howls along. The vocals are the perfect amount of rough and ready, perfect for the relatively simple lyrics and structures. It’s the kind of music you would expect to hear from some southern backwater town in the good old United States of ‘murica. Except it’s not from anywhere even remotely close. It just goes to show the influence that music can have, even half a world away.

If your not a tightwad this album is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and a swing in your step. Oh and the other thing? It’s free! So yet again you get this awesome music for the low cost of nothing at all. So go give it a listen and give your hillbilly side some love.

Stoner Train Bandcamp

Stoner Train Facebook

METAL MONDAY: Meankind on living, loving and slaying

I love having Monday mornings start at noon. Makes everything that much better.

So for today’s dose of skull shattering, organ grinding and flesh rending death metal, I give you Meankind.

Originally a two piece for their first EP, “22.Zero”, they have now expanded to a trio with a fourth honorary mustache member (A must in any band).  If the first line didn’t give you a hint, Meankind play death.fucking.metal. Their songs are fast, short and brutal with almost a punk mentality at times. Covering the gamut from tech-death shredding, to full syncopated face smashers, Meankind don’t let themselves stagnate in any one subset of death metal.

Never taking themselves too seriously, as you can see in the video for “Incomprehensible Appetite”, which results in a fun breed of death. Also worth mentioning is the vocal work of Péter Kelner, who’s gutteral growls and demonic shrieks are some of my favorites in this genre, not the guitar work by his partner Tamás Pencs is shabby by any stretch.

All in all it’s a fucking excellent 7 minute kick to the teeth that’s also…FREE. That’s right, you can download the newest EP, “Live, Love, Slay”, over on Bandcamp for free, which you should do because a good skullfucking of death metal is the only proper way to start any week.

Meankind Facebook

Meankind Bandcamp

And the video for the song “Incomprehensible Appetite”, chess and death metal abound!

Random Riffage: Freddie King takes you down

Without blues being what it was, we would not have any of the music featured on this blog. It’s thanks to people like Freddie King that we have such excellent bands playing such excellent riffs.

Freddie King is often known as one of the “Three Kings” of the electric blues guitar, along with Albert King and B.B King. I really don’t listen to as much blues as I probably should but there’s two Freddie King songs that are always on my rotation.

First up is 1971’s “Going Down”, also know as “that intro riff on Eastbound and Down”. One of his more broad spectrum rock songs, it’s a banger from start to finish.

Last is a song and video I found on youtube. I don’t know what the actual song title is but all you need to know is it’s a 5 minute and 1 second jam chock full of bluesy shredding. It also contains Freddie King’s extravagant brand of big collar swag.

Sunday Sludge: Stoned Jesus

It’s Sunday and I should technically be studying but not before sharing some satanic sludge.

Stoned Jesus are a fuzzed out sludge band from Kiev, Ukraine. They currently have two EP’s up on Bandcamp, “Stormy Monday” and “First Communion”. Personally I enjoy “First Communion” much more because for the “Stormy Monday” EP there is an entirely new lineup except for the lead singer and it changed their sound to something still listenable, but not as awesome.

“First Communion” is everything you need in a sludge album. Crushing, fuzzed out riffs that hammer along at a snails pace and eerie vocal builds that lend a certain occult flavor to their brand of sludge. This is the kind of music that meanders but you don’t really mind. Your being floated along a river of distortion and fuzz and slowly drift off and loose all track of time, space and the colour of your hair.

While the sound is heavy and riff drops quite crushing, the way it’s conducted lulls you to sleep in a way. It’s a safer breed of sludge where you don’t have to worry about demons from the nether rings of hell coming out and trying to twist your ears off with a pair of rusty tongs. You trust these riffs not to do that too you. It simple and predictable which is part of the reason it’s so enjoyable. You could almost say easy listening sludge, as blasphemous as that sounds.

Annnd here’s your links.

Stoned Jesus Facebook

Stoned Jesus Bandcamp

The Bandoliers and excellent mustaches

Coo-ee I really should actually start going to sleep at normal people times but one look at that dapper fellows facial hair and I just knew sleep wasn’t an option.

So in a mildly sleep deprived state I present you with The Bandoliers and their excellent brand of down home, feel good rock ‘n’ roll. Yet another Bandcamp find, The Bandoliers are a 4 piece from way down in Nashville Tennessee. With their single release to date, “Prove Yourself”, released on January of this year, The Bandoliers belt out a heaping helping of classic riffs and instantly likeable songs.

“Prove Yourself” is chock full of pure, un-pretentious rock and roll. Big comfortable riffs meshes together with some smooth, but not too smooth, vocal styling. The songs are catchy and instantly memorable, it’s the musical equivalent of comfort food. Big, greasy portions of stick-to-your-ears goodness that you can listen to over and over again. Full of handclaps, one note rock piano, gang vocals, some trumpet and even a little harmonica, it’s lighthearted and smile inducing.

Even more good news is that you can own this album for the low cost of FREE. That’s right, it’s free on Bandcamp right now, so you should like go download it and listen to it. Cuz like, it’s awesome, and free, what else are you waiting for?

The Bandoliers Facebook

The Bandoliers Bandcamp


Random Riffage: Revocation’s funeral dirge

One of my favorite and most infectious songs of 2011 was hands down Revocation’s “No Funeral”. Coming from the absolutly stellar release “Chaos of Forms” (Which made year end lists and won stuff…yada yada) this song is an absolute face melting, ear shredding three minutes and fifty nine seconds of pure badass motherfuckery.

Ignoring the fact that Dave Davidson was crowned the top modern metal guitarist this song has everything required for awesome. Flaming fretboards? Check. Catchy as the plague? Check. Eyeball melting duet solo’s? Check. Oh and there’s a video. So go watch it. Right meow.

Free Freaking Friday: Exemption

Fuckin’ eh. It’s Friday.


Now that that’s out of the way…Exemption are a band from Long Island/Brooklyn. This three peice band has released 3 albums, starting with 2009’s “Harmony of the Spheres” EP and the newest release (and album I’ve listened to the most), 2010’s “Public Cemetery Party” (Read: PCP). It’s extremely hard to pigeonhole a band like this into any genre, self described as “Aggressive Progressive”, that’s about the best description your going to get, other than “abso-fucking-lutly orgasm inducingly good”.

First thing you’ll notice as soon as the opening track “Hyperspiral” kicks into gear, is the infectious amount of pure energy this band packs into each square second of music. Frentic guitar work dances with equal charged drums, all covered by the soaring vocals and together creating one infectious melody. This album is beautiful, plain and simple. I wasn’t sure how I would like the extremely clean vocals but it just works so damn well with the music.

It’s technical but not overtly so. There’s always a cohesive, foot tapping rhythm holding everything together. The entire album burns a red hot groove through your mind that sticks there for days. I’ve had “Mutating Skulls” stuck in my head all damn week. Now the riffs. Catchy, foot tapping, technical with plenty of groove. The amount of musicianship on display here is simply staggering. Which leads me to my next point. These guys are fucking unsigned, it’s insane when you think about it really.

Their music is like the aforementioned drug. Stated as causing “feelings of strength, power, and invulnerability as well as a numbing effect on the mind” that’s exactly what this music does. It’s unstable and unpredictable, like a druggie coming at you with half a broken wine bottle but it doesn’t stop, nor do you want it too.

Oh the other insane thing? You can download “Public Cemetery Party” right now, So go do it. Right now. Before I sick a horde of hungry pre-schoolers on your ass.

Exemption Facebook

Exemption Bandcamp

Gringo Records Sampler

Is it Thursday night already? Crap, I really need to start keeping track of time.

Annnnnnnyway. After discovering the quite excellent That Fucking Tank, I discovered that their record label, Gringo Records, released a free sampler of their music last December. Based out of Nottingham, England, Gringo is a DIY noise/alt rock label that represents about 40 bands. This 12 song sampler covers the entire gamut of the artists on their roster. Intermixed with the noise rock is some alternative, a slight bit on indie and just a teensie bit of sludge.

Considering it’s a free download, you’ve really got nothing to loose do you? Give it a listen and see what you think.

Gringo Records Facebook

Indian Handcrafts bring the fuzz

Time for you daily dosage of fuzz, essential for a healthy and active lifestyle.

Indian Handcrafts come from Barrie, Ontario, which is quite close to me but this is the first time I’ve heard any of their music. When I did get around to listening to it I was pleasantly surprised to find a head shaking combination of sludge and noise rock designed to melt faces.

A big fuzzed out guitar tone, backed by substantially booming drums and some frantic vocals bring together their sound. While they don’t stray to far from the tried and true “melt face with distortion” sludge formula, it’s well executed and sounds good, which is really all that matters. Two tracks on the album, “Microwave Lunch” and “The Jerk”, show almost an indie rock influence coming through while still retaining the heaviness from previous tracks.

This indie/noise rock influence gives their brand of sludge a bit more a friendly tone, as compared to the absolutly bone shattering evil of a band like Dopethrone for instance. It’s done so well though, that it doesn’t alienate people from either side of the musical spectrum (lighter/heavier). At some points the songs take on almost a experimental feel, with screeching guitars and ambient synths backing strained vocals.

All in all it’s a solid album worth a listen for any fan of sludge or distortion for that matter. So give it a listen and leave some thoughts in the comments.

Indian Handcrafts Facebook

Indian Handcrafts Bandcamp