Mindkult - Witch's Oath EP (2016)

19 October, 2016

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Checking out some requests that flew under my radar last month, this one instantly amazed me. Witch's Oath, Mindkult's debut EP is the solo effort of a talented musician known as Fowst. Which makes it even more amazing. This is some heavy psyched out vintage doom, made somewhere in Virginia, USA. Where exactly? I don't know, there is some mystery behind Fowst.

Mindkult's debut is a seamless combination of the old and new. It combines heavy doom riffs with the mellower, atmospheric soundscapes of shoegaze; and surprisingly clean vocals. Melancholic yet energetic and melodic. Still, Fowst managed to create a different sound on every song. As I mentioned, the whole album is performed by one person: guitars, bass, drums, and vocals - all Fowst. The heavy guitars produce a thick wall of sound and the background music is also very good. The sound quality on the album is not particularly amazing for what it could have been. But I really like the raw, lo-fi sound. I think it gives some character to all of it. Its like it was recorded in a garage type atmosphere.

This is another great doom project from the underground that cannot be missed. As far as debuts go, this one is a good starting point. I'm curious what Fowst has in store for us in the future. Now let the music do the talking, just check this album out. You should not be disappointed.

Grajo - Grajo (2016)

16 October, 2016

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Speaking of killer albums, here is another great hidden gem fronted by a woman with a fascinating and beatufil voice! Grajo is a Space/Stoner/Doom band from Córdoba, Spain. Their debut album came out in May, but I discovered it just two weeks ago. If you guys already knew it... Why didn't you tell me before!?

These guys have a really groovy Saint Vitus-esque vibe around their sound. Combine this with mountainous riffs and you're in for a ten ton trip. Yes, it's heavy, but very melodic at the same time, with mesmerizing dreamy vocals. A perfect combination, very refreshing. Trust me, you'll get addicted in no time. My favourite songs on this album are Magic Eye, Feeding Our Demons and I Am The Sea Still, but you can't go wrong with all the mighty jams on here.

Superb album by a great new band. I would highly recommend this album to every doom fan out there. Very easy to listen from start to finish. This is just another 2016 favourite of mine. In constant rotation in my home!

Haunted - Haunted (2016)

12 October, 2016

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WOW! A massive, killer album. Yep, I've said it. This is exactly how I want to start this review and what are you gonna do about it? From a beautiful city called Catania in Italy comes Haunted, a heavy five-piece, doom metal band. Their self-titled debut album was just released at the turn of August/September through Twin Earth Records, so it is still fresh. I've found a new band to obsess over and obsess I shall.

I just started listening to Haunted and I was immediately blown away. Think of it as Electric Wizard teaming up with Pentagram adding female vocals, a dark, doomy sound played in a funky, rockin' psychedelic way. I'm just addicted to their overall sound and the catchiness of each of their songs. From the hauntingly beautiful vocals to the monolithic riffs. This is exactly how we want all of our records to sound like. The buildup on this album is amazing, not just in the songs themselves or the song lengths, but the entire record. Absolutely great tunes.

I think this is currently one of Italy's finest offerings if your looking for stoner doom jams. Adding this to the 2016 biggest surprises from the underground! An essential newcomer, highly recommended. Don't take my word for it, just get this album and play it loud!

The Vibes - Fuck The Vibes (2016)

10 October, 2016

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A fine request for all you stoner punks out there. The Vibes is a four-piece band from San Salvador, El Salvador. They released their first album, Fuck The Vibes in August. And it's still available as a free Bandcamp download, so get this album and give these guys a listen!

The Vibes are combining crazy garage punk rock with energetic stoner rock and just good fucking rock and roll in general. It's not the most sophisticated sound in the world, but it is raw passion and pure love for music that propels this album to sheer heights. The album will stay in your head for days because it's so catchy. But it is really short. Around twenty-five minutes in total for eleven tracks, with most barely passing the 2-minute mark. The band decided to record almost the entire album in Spanish, that's a nice, little break from all the bands singing in English...Solid, catchy and straightforward.

There's nothing revolutionary about Fuck The Vibes, but that doesn't mean it's not enjoyable. Because I highly enjoyed this album, and would recommend it to anyone that is looking for something loud to crank up while you turn off your brain for a bit, this is a good choice!

Never Before - King of Worms (2016)

04 October, 2016

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Ok, we are still in Beijing, China. So now I want to introduce you to the next band from that city. Nevere Before is a stoner/doom metal band and it's also a debut album this time.

King of Worms is a great album on which this band showcases their Down inspired sound in a beautiful way. You can also hear some Corrosion of Comformity and Church of Misery influences. Bluesy sludge riffage and solid grooves. A more uptempo, crossover style of sludge, doom and stoner metal. These guys are really tapped into their collective talent. They sound tight, but still make it come off like a it's a great jam session. I would recommend this album to anyone who is looking for a more versatile and clean sound in the genre. Also if you like your sludge to be more than just riffs being dragged through a swamp.

For Never Before, a rising band in the genre, their debut is one that definitely succeeds. And the more you listen the better it gets. Get this now and play it damn loud!

Electric Lady - Queen Of Electricity And Her Coming Kingdom (2016)

02 October, 2016

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Another month, another review. Let me present you some bands from more exotic places. Of course exotic from my European point of view. So no offense please.

Electric Lady is a retro rock band from Beijing, China...Wait, what? From China? Yeah, from China! Did you think there is no retro rock in China, huh? There is and it's pretty fucking good. Queen Of Electricity And Her Coming Kingdom is their debut album and it was released in January this year.

The band salutes to the early 70's and groups like Sir Lord Baltimore (there is a nice SLB cover on the album), Blue Cheer, Cream, Atomic Rooster, Jimi Hendrix Experience, Black Sabbath etc. This is female fronted retro at it's most vintage. Already the first song grabs you immediately and takes the listener on a colourful trip of fuzz, psychedelic and hard rock. Great vocal stylings that recall the era too. Overall, the album has a classic rock feel that can't be faulted. From the sound to the atmosphere and production; everything just fits.

Another hidden gem in the world of retro rock. It may not be anything life-altering, mind-blowing, or Earth-shattering, but regardless, it is a very, thoroughly solid and enjoyable record from a promising young group. But if you've got an appreciation for old school heaviness or just dig good, solid, heavy rock n' roll, Electric Lady is a must-have. I look forward to future release from this band.

Major Kong - Brave New Kong (2016)

30 September, 2016

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It's about time to present you a release from my country. Just ten months after their last Ep, Major Kong from Lublin is back with another EP. It came out almost a month ago, but I finally got to hear this gem.

Major Kong offers a fully instrumental cosmic trip into bulky stoner metal. Throughout the 13 minutes that is Brave New World, the band manages to create a highly listenable trip. Delivering 3 tracks filled with thick, fuzzy doom drenched in cloudy psychedelica. These guys throw out some crushing riffs, massive grooves and hard hitting drumwork while staying really dynamic in their own distinct way. The tracks are well-written and the overall sound is everything what you could wish for.

Their sound is one big epic adventure, listen without distraction from start to finish. Overwhelming, atmospheric & highly immersive. Currently one of the most heavy Polish bands out there. I can't wait for a full-length album with the same vibe.

Possessor - Dead By Dawn (2016)

27 September, 2016

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Possessor is an unholy 3 piece from the UK. Dead By Dawn is their second full-length. It was released in July and is still available as limited edition cassette. How cool is that? They are offering these tapes for 6 pounds. Check the bandcamp link below.

Possessor is a band that blends many influences from the past & present. From the classic Sabbathian and Pentagram grooves, to the massive Electric Wizard riffage and Melvins craziness. With a bit of oldschool death metal and a touch of the first and second wave of black metal. I even hope that their next album will have more black metal influences. Last but not least, the 80's thrash metal high-speed. Yes, it's fast, thrashy, pounding and heavy while maintaining a somewhat distinctive personality through the sound. Of course you can't forget all the horror films inspirations. Just to mention one. The album title is obviously referring to Evil Dead 2 (aka the best movie ever made). But every more experienced horror fanatic will quickly notice all of them.

All in all, an excellent slab of heavy metal with more than enough to keep even the most discerning listener engaged for countless listens. I know I’ll certainly be revisiting this one over and over again.

She Beast - III EP (2016)

25 September, 2016

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Remember She Beast, heavy sludge/doom band from Melbourn, Australia? I've written about their previous EP Felch just last month and the guys are coming right back with a new EP. Now that's what I call a busy band. With the release of their follow up, III She Beast once again take you on a trip you won’t soon forget. Playing the old school sludge metal vibes like we love 'em. This is the kind of music you want to play on maximum volumes. Solid stuff coming from the sleazy underground.

Dax Riggs - Three Live Shows

25 September, 2016

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I think it's time to post again something you can download. Since Dax (Acid Bath, Agents of Oblivion, Deadboy & the Elephantmen) is one of my favorite artists of all time, I would like to present to you this three, marvelous Dax Riggs concerts. Two acoustic, solo shows from 2003 and a show with his band from June 2007. I would say the quality is pretty is good. I hope you'll enjoy it.

The Re-Stoned - Reptiles Return (2016)

22 September, 2016

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The Re-Stoned is an instrumental trio hailing from Moscow, Russia. Lead by guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Ilya Lipkin (Rushus, A Foggy Realm, Waldsonne). For around eight years now the three gentlemen have been making a name for themselves.
This band creates a unique sound, influenced by all the pages of the stoner, psychedelic, space catalogue. They're also exploring the depths of prog, acid and blues rock. I was instantly pleased by a sea of fuzzy, psychedelic vibes. This is not necessarily heavy music, but it packs a punch in the first few songs. Considering the genre, The Re-Stoned definitely stands it's ground in terms of musical creativity. Most of all Lipkin shows he is a great writer and composer.
Mighty fine album from one of the most promising instrumental bands I layed my ears on this year. You can't go wrong with all the great jams on here!

Thermate - Off to Hades (2016)

17 September, 2016

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Thermate is a fresh five-piece band from the Finnish lake region, the city of Kuopio, to be precise.
"Off to Hades" is the band's first official EP; which feature four tasty songs, where the guys are paying homage to the seventies hard rock and the nineties stoner rock. That's always a good combination to start with. Just think of something between Graveyard, Radio Moscow and Dozer. Heavy rock with catchy melodies, parts of dry heat stoner and classic metal give all this that extra boost.
If you love organic desert jams with a touch of blues, Thermate should be a no-brainer. A fuzzy, dusty gem worth checking out!