Dirge doom is all in my bones, Space doom is all in my bones, Apocalyptic doom is all in my bones…how good it feels to have your being taken over by Nola sonic destroyers THOU. The band’Ss new EP The Archer & The Owle, which will be out Aug 2nd via Robotic Empire (pre-order here), is another awesome collection of stellar music. I can’t front, I’m really amazed by this band, I will say it again: these dudes are modern day blues men. Every song on this EP is just as fucking sick as a government-made virus. THOU are champions at using emotion as a weapon that will conquor your blackened heart. When I listen to their music, I feel like they are trying to tell a story with every note that they play. It’s almost like they are doom griots & for those who have minds to hear them, something special will be reveled! So much dark, slow-moving melody, it’s like molasses spreading over our nightmares, but actually they know how to create cracks of sunlight in their music so that rays of hope are able to shine through. THOU locks in on some mammoth riffs on The Archer & The Owle, & repetition serves the band well while giving us audio ear candy. The song “Voices in the Wilderness” is a ten minute epic voyage that will have you sailing through caves of despair & flying over blackened mountains of sorrow, plus the basslines will tell you secrets that can’t be spoken. Are you ready for the real heavy check? Their track “Bonnet Carre” oozes out constant surges of black dirge that will have you head bobbing for daze, but it’s the valleys of sonic space that draw you into this song. Why did THOU totally push my wig back with an off the chain cover of Nirvana’s “Something in the Way” & they did superdelic job at it! THOU vocalist always makes my jaws drop with his delivery that is just pure toxic bile with a hint of morbid stench. After the jump check out some epic video footage from their most recent European tour…plus catch them doing a BLACK SABBATH cover!
I feel so low right now, I’m seeing the world through the eyes of spider…the dirt is closing in around me. Maybe I should stop growing my herb in the graveyard, smoking a pound of death plays tricks on your happy thoughts. Fuck that, this how I like to feel when I’m blasting WITCH-LORD; this band is straight funeral death doom that’s rad as hell. Their album, Atomized In The Black Solarian, was just released via A389 Recordings. You know, I was thinking the other day, what kind of doom gets me down the way I want to feel, & I figured out I’m huge fan of the blackened styles so this band fits into my world just just fine. WITCH-LORD’s music is slow-creeping death filled with the joy of the underworld, & when under the influence of the sweetleaf, they sound even sicker. Let’s talk about their bass lines, ultra low in tone & speaking the evol lanuage of doom…every once in a while I can hear them say “there will be no tomorrow, the end is near.” I really dig how WITCH-LORD conjures up a cycodelic aura with their riffs, they sound very sinister. This band is in no rush to torture, they want to to kill you with a slow death. While listening to their song “Witch-Lord,” I can’t help but get these visions of ancient haunted cathedrals where even demons are too frightened to exist! WITCH-LORD’s music has the power to induce a dark trance-like state of mind were no hope can live. Deep, deep under all of their blackened distortion & brutal feedback, you can get hear this punk attitude that is the crazy glue holding this shit together. The vocalist in this band seems like he wears a mask of filth that is tied on to his skull by hate, & from this mask he gets his vocal power, which has a decaying fury about it. Atomized In The Black Solarian is a heavy album for those who like their doom groove dipped in a bucket of rotting stench…call me foul, this is how I want my gloom served!
WITCH-LORD : Witch-Lord
Esoterra was a zine which existed from the early 90′s up until the year 2000 chronicling the far-out of the far-out in culture. Emphasizing the importance of hidden and obscure voices, Esoterra easily found its self lodged on many bookshelves snugly between Simon Dwyer’s ‘Rapid Eye’ series, V. Vale’s ‘Re/Search’ books, and Adam Parfrey’s seminal ‘Apocalypse Culture’. Not many zines have been able to claim these important and controversial works as neighbors.
After Esoterra stopped publishing physical copies in 2000 they continued with online content. I’m not sure how many copies of each issue ever got printed but those that were became difficult to get. Lucky for us, earlier this year Creation Books published an anthology of “the best material from the magazine” – according to creator and editor Chad Hensley. Unfortunately, it’s not everything but what remains is pretty damn cool.
Esoterra: The Journal of Extreme Culture is packed to the brim with reflections on society from voices rarely heard and often ignored to the point of subtle silence. Highlights include a interviews with Adam Parfrey, Alan Moore, Iain Banks, Genesis P-Orridge, Peter Whitehead, Iain Sinclair, Boyd Rice, and Thomas Ligotti. There is also a pretty good piece on the Process Church, a piece of fiction by Thomas Ligotti entitled ‘The Nightmare Network’, Adam Parfey’s ‘Weird Sex Cults’, a short piece on necro-ethics by known necrophiliac Leilah Wendell, and some pre-Lords of Chaos pieces on Black Metal my Michael Moynihan.
Not everything within is amazing, I found myself skimming over a couple of pieces, but overall this book is fucking great. There are a couple of interviews that veer off into sketchy (or possibly sketchy) areas, but fuck, we’re talking about a book with an interview with a necrophiliac in it, so it shouldn’t come as a shock. I think that’s part of what I like about it. If you’re gonna explore “Extreme Culture” you don’t turn away because someone said something offensive. And I know people will disagree, wishing in some way to eradicate the voices and opinions that cause tension and challenge the nice, neat world we want to live in. If you feel that way, this book isn’t for you. What I really mean is that Esoterra is a well rounded exploration of the far-out, so next to the anarchist voice you have the elitist voice, next to the humanist you have the misanthropist, and next to the underground, writer/artist/musician you have the fucking necrophiliac.
I can smell the pot fumes coming out of the sewer, wrapping around my dreams, turning them into night terrors. Hold on, I’m exhaling PUS…this South Wales band is my kind of buds. They have a sticky, blackened self-titled EP out now on Universal Tongue/Feretro Records that will make you feel dirty & high at the same time. PUS’ music is demonic blues for the underworld, where Satan’s helpers smoke big bongs. Every song on this EP crushes the timid, but gives power to the herbmen of the darkworld. This band’s bass lines are full of top grade THC, plus they have this “stoned is the way to be” vibe about them that just makes my fucking day. Actually the bass waves on songs like “Image of the Dredd Law” is as heavy as 666 tons of the gnarly stuff. You know when you smoke too much & evol voices start going off in your head, that’s what their lead singer sounds like, a mean ghoul who is trying to steal our stash. PUS drummer sets the dirge beats for the rest of the band to follow, which is not hard for them because the sounds he creates are mammoth. Now let me talk about the wizard riffs that have me high before I even light my spliff, now that is some rad shit. One thing is that I really dig about PUS is that they have this awesome crust aura that gives every jam a good stench. So this is the deal, when a bunch of punks decide to puff on that Mr. Nice & form a band, you end up with the killer sounds of PUS!
I recently had a good long chat with Adam Bartlett of Gilead Media, an awesome indie label that has put out releases from Thou, Krallice, Fell Voices and others. Gilead is one of my favorite labels. The DIY ethic runs through every aspect of his label, as you’ll read below. Adam operates the label, screen prints shirts, patches, and inserts for his releases, and is wrapping up work on a movie. Tons of words, links, and photos after the jump. Banner photo by Mary Manchester.
Hey Adam how’s it going?
Fantastic, just got home from a bike ride, jamming Twin Peaks and full of caffeine. Ready to bust this interview!
Awesome, how is the Oshkosh Summer?
This part of the midwest is in a really great part of the temperate climate zone, so we get unbelievably brutal winters (up to 50 below with wind chill sometimes) and relatively warm summers (averaging high 80s-100s during the warmest weeks). But I love the variety of weather here.
Yeah people I talk to who move to California always say “I miss seasons”
Yea man, winter is critical to mental health, makes you appreciated the warmth. People get seasonal depression here big time, but then everyone’s mega-amped on life in the summer.
Sounds good, we’ll get back into talking about winter a little later. My first question is when did you start Gilead Media and what drove you to start your own label?
I think it was 2005 that I started the label. I was working for an indie music distributor and tons of my co-workers had little labels they did on their own. Thorp Records, Doghouse Records and a couple others were all run by some of my co-workers. In addition to that, we distributed some really incredible labels that I’ve built either personal or professional relationships with, Robotic Empire, Hydra Head etc. So I was 20 years old, working with all these incredibly hard-working people doing great things with music, I was just motivated to do my own thing. The first release was a DVD compiling all the live footage by my old Milwaukee band, since we never recorded our full-length album before we broke up. The first REAL Gilead Media release (catalog #1) was a split between my then active spazzy/tech drum machine band (with Sacred Tapes founder, Christopher Sommer) and Missouri tech band Withchildlikeeyes. From there things sort of just exploded beyond control. Actually now that I do the math, I must’ve been 22 at the point I started the label for real.
What happens when one of CVLT Nation’s favorite photographers, Alan Hunter, takes photos of one of our favorite bands, Dark Castle? Well, I would say that magik is created. On the band’s latest stop in Seattle, Alan captured their set on film & the flicks are really otherworldly. He was able to make me feel like I was at their epic concert in the flesh. His style of photography brings to life the sounds that can be heard on the new Dark Castle album Surrender To All Life Beyond Form. One thing that connects these creative spirits is how they both understand the power of movement. One honors this concept through sound, the other honors it through sight. To me, Dark Castle stretches the foundation of doom into something that is different than most, & Alan Hunter does the same with his photography – he takes it somewhere altogether different. So today, CVLT Nation would like to share this special night of sight & sound with you. After the jump, check out these superdelic photos & zone out!
Let’s keep this simple. Disma’s Towards the Megalith is currently my top contender for metal album of the year. An absolutely devastating wall of perfectly produced downtuned Death Metal, Towards the Megalith is one of those albums that comes together so perfectly you can’t help but wonder how anyone could top this. Featuring vocals by the legendary Craig Pillard (Ex-Incantations) backed up by Daryl Kahan (Funebrarum, Citizens Arrest),Bill Venner (Incantation),Randi Stokes (ex-Methadrone), and Shawn Eldridge (Funebrarum), Disma’s lineup reads like a who’s who of American death metal. Following the release of their Vault of Membros demo, Towards the Megalith’s eight tracks weigh in at a solid 46 minutes.
I was able to catch up via email with one of the creators of this years most talked about Southern California extreme music festivals…California Discord Fest. The first of many more to come, this festival has already generated massive buzz due to the impressive and exclusive lineup with bands from all over the world convening at its Los Angeles based location. Heres a brief insight into the mind of Daniel Gonzales of Bones Booking.
Read the rest of this epic interview after the jump!
Deranged, twisted nightmares & insanity are just normal states of mind for California’s LOW PLACES, who are set to release their first record for A389 recordings called Spiritual Treatment, which hits the streets Aug. 16th. They start the record off with hateful sludge that sounds borderline cyco. This song has a real ultra sinister quality about it; it gets under your skin & just creeps you out. Also, the opening song sets the tone for the rest of this awesome unhinged experience, that lasts for almost 15 minutes. The thing that I really find interesting about the first song is that it shows that LOW PLACES are totally willing to take chances & will not allow themselves to be put into a box, which is smart as hell! By the second song, the band is all up in your face in attack mode, with some craze damaged hardcore that will make the hair on the back of your neck stand to attention. This album reminds me of EYEHATEGOD being injected with a weird new drug called super SPAZZ. With Spiritual Treatment, the band really lived up to their name, because this record does take you to some very LOW PLACES. You can hear this constant groove of danger on every song, no matter how slow or how fast. Vince, the singer, swallowed a whole can of whoop ass before he went into the vocal booth – he just murders shit when he steps up to mic. This record makes me smile, because it’s cool to to hear a band grow weirder & radder with each release. High places are epic, but LOW PLACES is where the real shit is!
Have you had really dark thoughts, mixed with thoughts of floating in space, then you descend down to earth…? Maybe you haven’t, but I know of a band that can induce these kind of feelings, they are called Eibon. This French band call themselves dark progressive Doom/Sludge…these labels would be cool for other groups. To me, Eibon has elements of these labels, but their album, Entering Darkness, released via Aesthetic Death Records & Media Tree, is a journey into a world were no labels exist, only fucking killer mind-alerting music. I really don’t know where to start with this review, because everything about this album moves me. The first thing I will say: before listening get your best medical green bud, pack a bowl, light & let the trip begin. The bassline that this band creates is a magic carpet ride unto itself, that will take you to your nightmares then back around to the best day of your life. This band uses bass as a weapon of doom that has the power to heal & destroy, while being shot through the dubedelic effects machine. Eibon’s songs have these caves that are filled with blackened vocals that lay on top of the rhythm of slow-moving death, before evolving into this rivers of emotion for your dreams to swim in. These dudes are wizards at bending tones so that they will hit in the part of your being that will make you think there is hope in this desolate place called Earth. Vocally, what I really dig about this band is the soul that can be felt in the blackened delivery of the singer. It would be really hard for me to pick one song that describes their sound, because every song is a wonder that leaves me in awe. I also must make it clear that this band can take you to depths where the only language that is spoken is evil & man it has never sound so gnarly. One thing you can hear in this band’s music is confidence in what they create & the source where they draw their inspiration from. This sums up how awesome Entering Darkness is…think of your favorite album, listen to this album & then after, I think you might have a new favorite album!
Eibon : Entering Darkness
Eibon : These Chains