Friday, December 31, 2010

Papir- Papir (Red Tape)

Papir is a young Danish band who plays all instrumental psychedelic kraut rock. This is their debut LP and it features 4 tracks (2 on each side). Kurl te pow Ralise starts things off with some old school early 70s style electronic beat and then the rest of the band slowly comes in. There are a lot of nice psychedelic textures going on in this track and the guitar player plays some really cool stuff but he works the canvas as he likes, playing here and there as the track drifts into the netherworld. Lykk trep-R hi-lose (I am not at all sure what is up with these strange titles) finishes off side A. This track starts less spaced out with a steady drum rhythm, some keyboard lines, strummed guitar line, as it floats away and the killer bass line kicks in as the guitar sound goes into outer space. This is a very cool song.

            Side B starts with Une frensal n-erit. This one starts with a very spacey beginning and then the guitar riff kicks in but a lot of spacey cool sounds and things continue to bubble up and surface as the drummer keeps the drive of the song moving forward. It becomes pretty heady, psychedelic stuff as the track builds and Nikolas starts using his guitar pedals! Trippy and amazing track, a bit like the Spacious Mind a band these guys have probably never heard of. Rogter sot oe Koft ends the record. The track again starts with a old school drum machine like rhythm and now they have some piano played sparingly, which other sounds layer into the fold and the song develops and the heavy killer guitar riff kicks in. The drum sound is really low fi and special on this track and it gives it a cool sound. Wow.. what a damn cool band. I have heard some of the their new stuff and it is very promising as well. They are supposed to release a new record early in 2011 as they just recorded it recently with Jonas Munk of Causa Sui.

Order at 100 kr / 14 € / 18 $ + postage. It is only pressed in 250 copies and they do use Paypal! 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Yeti Rain- III (Crimsonic Label)

This is the 3rd Yeti Rain CD. It features Roger Ebner on sax and wind synth, William Kopecky on bass and vocals on one track, and Craig Walkner on acoustic and electronic percussion. Planets starts things off and is a 10½ min track. I have to say Robert Ebner plays some damn cool sax and wind synth and William and Craig just climb the hill with some solid drums and heavy deep, intense bass presses! It gets quite psychedelic at the end and very intenses drumming. Dragonfly Algebra, rings it at over 12 mins and starts quite spaced out and the very cool wind synth comes in after a few minutes. The delay on the saxophone makes it quite psyched out as William lays down these heavy deep bass lines. Craig does not really kick in for a long while but plays various drums and percussion. The kick drum is quite intense in this track and Williams bass gets super spaced out, almost like a deep keyboard at times. If they slowed things down you might get a feel for Bohren and der club of Gore. The Meeting is a bit scary to start and very spaced out track. Fires of Heaven starts with the wind synth and bass slowly pushing in from the bottom as some explosions occur. Some nice delay on the instruments makes this one really spaced out. The Sky Sickened features William on vocals and it is a very strange piece he reads and afterwards the track spaces out each time he speaks. Intense.  It is hard to believe some of the stuff on this track is not keyboards. Very cool. The Sixth Bowl of Wrath ends the CD. The sax is like in a cave on this one, in fact it all sounds like that. A musically challenging CD but damn cool. If the sax was traded for guitar you could get a feel like the Norwegian Tangle Edge at times with this bands music. They tread a similar experimental music path. The artwork is quite special on this CD. Some might find it a bit disturbing or relaxing.

US Christmas- Run thick in the Night (Neuroot Recordings 074)

US Christmas is back with a new full length CD. It features 13 tracks in 77 mins and rumor has it that it will be released on vinyl by Relapse records. If you are unfamiliar with this band, they play a unique brand of spaced out psychedelic blues and space rock. The CD has wonderful artwork and all the lyrics to the songs. This CD has a lot of variety and quite a few acoustic songs with mostly guitar, vocal and violin. In the Night is a 13 min track that starts things off. It is a slow building psychedelic space rock monster with some very intense vocals at times. They really know how to create this psychedelic sound like old Hawkwind and the Spacious Mind.  Wolf on Anareta sounds like old school Hawkwind and is a heavy mind fuck and some very intensely shouted vocals by Nate. Pounding, penetrating space rock. Fire is Sleeping is a short 3½ min track with a mournful violin and acoustic guitar. Nate sounds amazing when he sings like this compared to his “in your face” shouting style on the intense tracks. Fonta Flora starts with some spacey sounds and a nice slow beginning as this one slowly builds up in this instrumental track. The violin is also prominently featured and then some killer spacey guitar is played as the band take it to another level of intensity. Great song. Ephraim in the Stars is a slow spacey track with stoney vocals. The Leonids is a short 2½ min piece that leads into Suzerain. This is a dark bluesy mysterious track and Nate’s intense singing voice returns. Some will probably find some of the music on this CD depressing but it does not effect me in that way. I think they just write and play very intensely. Maran is a 4 min track that is again starts slowly, melodic, bluesy and spaced at times but gains in intensity with another spacey guitar solo. The Quena is a very spacey instrumental track and is followed by Deep Green. Deep Green starts almost like a raga with a single guitar (ok, quite a few of their songs start like this), before the bass and drums kick in. The spacey slide guitar on this one is very cool as it slowly evolves and features these repeated like vocals that make it very psychedelic. Great track. The Devils Flower in Mother Winter goes back to the acoustic guitar violin vocal style. A beautiful song. Only 2 more tracks left and the band still have some intensity left. Mirror Glass is a short track that leads into The Moon and Flesh and Bone, the last track on this long album. It features a great spacey slide solo. Overall this record is more laid back with fewer uptempo tracks than their other records but the psychedelic spaced out vibe is still amazing. Powerful emotional music for psych heads.

Pothead- Berlin 2010 (Janitor Records JRC-1015)

Pothead is back with their 2nd live CD (the last one came out in 2004). This one was also recorded at Huxley’s in Berlin and mixed in the bands own Big Berries Studios in Berlin. It features 20 tracks in 73 mins and only about a third of these tracks were also on the other live CD. One big surprise for me was that there are no songs from their last studio record, Rocket Boy, which I thought was a great album. I feel the sound production is quite a bit better on this one than the last. The CD opens up with Appreciate from the Pot of Gold EP. The track listing to start the CD is quite strange and diverse tracks but then they do really pick up the energy and here after the CD is really solid and the way I like Pothead.. A lot of great tracks are played like I’m a Sinner Too, Rock Child, Black War, and they end the CD, with the amazing Indian Song. I like the new intro as well. I forgot to say they also play a couple of brand new numbers including the killer Telephone Line and Let’s Rock-Rock On! You have to play this one LOUD. There is no other way to play Pothead. What a great band.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mr. Peter Hayden- Faster than Speed (Winter Records)

This is the 3rd official MPH release, the first ones being a 7” and split 10” (they did release a quite rare CD-R as well). The CD has a really cool fold out packaging and features two 30 min tracks, timing in at a little over an hour. The band recorded the basic tracks over a couple of days but then spent around 2 years making it just like they want. The first track, Smoke in Space is 33:33 and a long journey that  reminds me a lot of Circle as it is quite repetitive but the band mix in their own special ideas and keep the track pretty interesting. It starts slow and droney but slowly builds up. Just before the 11min mark it gets quite heavy and intense. There is even a saxophone part mid way through the track this very melodic section but the guitar in the background is quite spacey as well. The groove towards the end is very soulful and you can really get hooked. The 2nd track, has a different dimension to it starts quite spacey and slow with sax and a real floating in and out vibe but the guitar part is quite repetitive and then the heavy section kicks in and reminds me of another Finnish band, Dark Budda Rising, but MPH are not nearly as heavy in the sound production.
The band have created a damn cool and very ambitious CD for real music travellers.

Kamikaze Queens- Kamikaze Queens 7” (Heptown Records HTR 992)

This is a fairly new band, this being their 2nd 7” release. They have released one full length CD as well. The 7” has very cool artwork. The band is from Germany (Berlin) but with an American connection. Tastee 29 starts off side A. It is a mid paced garage rock song with some fun lyrics. The female vocalist has a deep voice that really grows on you. 3 Strikes has a very catchy thread to it and a bit of a country twang as well. Sounds like a kazoo solo in this track. In some ways they remind me of Cherry Overdrive but in a totally different way than you would think. They are one the same label and it makes sense the owners would like both bands. Anyway, I quite liked both tracks. Why don’t they play cool tracks like this on the radio? This is the stuff the kids should be getting into and not that Lady Gaga shit……

Grand Magnus and the II- Amorphopallus (Ghost Drome 027)

Grand Magnus is a new Copenhagen all improvised psychedelic band. This is their 2nd CD-R release, I believe. The label specializes in limited edition and quite strange releases, this being one of them. The CD is 5 tracks of weirdness about 63 minutes. The first and title track is just a lot of strange radio stuff mixed with other samples to start and lasts 32 minutes. Interesting collage? I’m not sure. Strange..Yes.. I don’t think most people will want to sit through this more than once. Anyway, the three piece band, kicks in for a jam around 9 mins with mainly the bass and drums, while the guitar player tries to find his way and plays some trumpet or sax. The jam is pretty boring until 25 mins or so when it is getting a bit more strange with the guitar player. The drummer and bass player really keep the driving rhythm going but I don’t think what the guitar player is doing is very interesting. Bladene hilste p hinanden is 11 mins and starts very slowly and quietly with just bass and guitar bouncing some things back and forth a bit as the guitar line becomes more melodic and interesting. The bass and guitar are a bit out of touch with each other and you can now hear some hand drums coming in as well. He eventually puts down the guitar and starts to play trumpet and then he disappears completely (had to go take a leak??). Det her er dig is next and around 12 mins with some more intense hand drumming and some guitar feedback to start. The jam is quite strange and then there is some saxophone or clarinet at the last few minutes. The next track with a long Danish title is mostly a drum solo until the end, when the others come back in. Anyway, this is very improvised and experimental. I have CD-R #14 out of 50 (I think). I am not sure they could sell many more. I described it so you have to decide for yourself if you like it.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Farflung- Live at Roadburn (Meteorcity)

I was at this show and have enjoyed hearing the Roadburn stream so it was great to hear this was coming out on double vinyl. The vinyl records are very cool colors but very thin (120gm?) vinyl but the sound is good. This is a low budget release but the band played an amazing set of tracks with something from nearly everyone one of their many records. I was a little disappointed that this was just a higher quality audio mix of the streamed audio, as while that did have really great sound, the main lead guitar player is mixed way too low for the entire concert and also here. I was hoping that would be different for the official release. Anyway, the highlights for me of this amazing 73 min set are the versions of Silver Shrooms, Landing on Cydonia and the very powerful Unborn Planet. It is all really heavy punky in your face psychedelic space rock though. Farflung are a very cool band and I am glad that they released this set. Well worth hunting down!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Studio 13 new Releases- Capricorn 7" and Monster Magnet 10"

Studio 13 is a new label formed by Monster Magnet members Phil and Dave. This is the first release and a new band by Phil with one of the guys from Danzig. It is very Motorhead inspired but like slowed down a bit. The 7 features 2 tracks. American Dream starts off with that Lemmy like Rickenbacker sound and reminds me a bit of Dead man tells no Tales before they kick into a dirty rocker with a quite low fi, raw production. The b-side features, Nothin’ for Nothin’ and it has a guitar riff and groove that reminds me a lot of Step Down from Bomber. Phil plays guitar, bass and sings, Todd Youth plays guitars and bass and Karl Rosqvist plays the drums. This is only pressed in 100 copies and available only on the Monster Magnet Mastermind European tour dates. I doubt they have any left when they get back if they do they said they would sell them on the Monster Magnet web shop. I dig both the songs and look forward to them making more stuff. Phil said they would have another release in 2011.

Monster Magnet- Superjudge 10” (Studio 13)

           The band on this release is Bob (from Monster Magnet, Atomic Bitchwax, and Riotgod) on drums, Phil (Monster Magnet, Capricorn) on lead guitar, bass and Dave playing guitar and singing. They have rerecorded a super cool version of Superjudge and an unreleased song called She digs that Hole (a song from the new record Mastermind has a similar title but has no relation to this song, which has totally different lyrics). The version of Superjudge is very cool and laid back and quite psychedelic. It has this hypnotic low fi groove of bass, drums with the shaker and Dave just laying down the dirty blues psych out version. She digs that whole starts very bluesy and slow but then it kicks in gets pretty psyched out at the end. There is like a Tom Waits meets Monster Magnet vibe on both tracks and this is not at all highly produced like the standard MM records. Really cool stuff. This one is pressed in 500 copies. It will for sure be one of those collectors items. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Wino- Adrift (Exile on Mainstream EOM50V)

Wino (The Obsessed, Spirit Caravan, St. Vitus to name a few) has released his 3rd solo record, if you could Live at Roadburn as well. This is a very intimate record of mostly just Wino and an acoustic guitar. He occasionally plays some electric lead as well. The vinyl edition is fantastic with great embossed artwork and it also comes with the CD booklet all the lyrics, including details of his thoughts about the specific song before the lyrics and information about the album. The album starts with the title track, which is just an acoustic song and reveals the personal nature of the record. A good friend of Wino’s, Ray Tilkens, plays lead guitar on 3 tracks and is panned to the right. The side A ends with an excellent acoustic version of the Motorhead song, Iron Horse. Side B starts with an instrumental track called Suzane’s Song. He plays some very nice acoustic guitar. D-Bear is dedicated to Scott Kelly of Neurosis-Shrinebuilder. Whatever has some powerful lyrics about his children, of which it seems he is in a fight to get the right to see, which sucks. Shot in the Head, an old Savoy Brown track is next and features Ray on slide guitar. O.B.E. is a spacey instrumental electric guitar track with some very cool mixing of the guitar. Green Speed with excellent lyrics ends this great record and features duelling electric solos by Wino and Ray. Great work Scott (Wino).

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Technicolor Poets- Hadrar Hotel (Kommun2-10)

Technicolor Poets are a new psychedelic rock band from Malmö Sweden. This is their debut release and it features some really excellent 60’s style dreamy stoned songs. This record was recorded in one day in August 2010. The sound of the recording is like they are in a big room and it helps to give it a more old school 60s sound but I think the sound is a bit too clean. Ketama starts things off.  This is a slow building track with a nice vocal and later the dual guitars get to psych out as the track picks up and reminds me a bit of Mandragora lightshow society. Three hours from your Garden is a slow track and I really like the vocal delivery on this one and nice bouncy bass line. The reverb guitar solo is cool. Hadar Hotel Part 1 ends side A and is a more intense track with a sort of eastern style guitar soloing. Astral Plane starts off side B, and is a bit eastern leaning psych with some hand drums, eastern scaled guitar lines (no sitar). Cool vocals and a really great laid back song. Hadar Hotel Part 2 takes up the rest of the album side. IT is a slow building track with some spoken words parts. Very cool stuff. This is a very ambitious record from some kids barely or under 20 years of age. Impressed.. Good work guys.

Place of Skulls- As a Dog returns (Giddy Up Records)

We just saw Victor and his band, Place of Skulls, play a great concert at Loppen in Christiania. They had some copies of this new CD, which is not officially out until Jan for sale so I bought one. I really liked the last CD, The Black is never Far. This new one has some really great material on it but also some tracks that I just skip due to the strong religious nature of the material. The band is now a Christian band and the lyrics are inspired by many specifically cited bible passages on the lyric page. Anyway, if we get away from the religious nature of the band, the music has a lot to give. Victor’s vocals are excellent and very passionate and he plays some very cool guitar and awesome riffs. The opening track is a heavy one and has a very cool guitar solo with some special effects. Breath of Life is a slow, heavy melodic track and beautiful music. Though he slay Me is an acoustic song about Victor and Jesus and I skip this one. Psalms is another very religious track but it has a cool laid back vibe with some conga drums and a slow dreamy way about it. Too religious.. Dayspring brings starts as a slow heavy blues vibe but slowly builds up and changes in this quite long track. Timeless Hearts (one of the ones they played live) and also nearly 8 mins and after the harmonica part a killer riff kicks in. Amazing song. He’s God is another slower GOD ballad but it gets quite heavy. Desperation (old Steppenwolf song) starts with some organ but the band does a good solid version. The CD ends with the title track, which starts slowly but Victor pulls out another monster riff and a cool doomy groove takes over. There is a lot of great and melodic heartfelt music here but I will probably not play this one so often due to the lyrics. I think this will turn off many people as well.

The Higher Craft- Oracle XIV Gateway (Big Yellow Taxi)

This is the Higher Craft’s 3rd release and a sort of teaser for the next full length record due out next year called Quest into the Stepping Stone Age.My scanner is down and I can't find the cover artwork anywhere on the net so I used the image for their new record, that is not yet out. Gateway starts things off. It is a melodic, dreamy psych rocker that gradually picks up pace and the acoustic guitars fade and the electric come more to the front. Some spacey sounds also fill out the background. It really picks up at the end and is quite psychedelic. Oracle is next and a fast paced 3½ min psychedelic rocker. The sound is very different from the first song and sounds like it is from a live performance. The band really plays fast on sort of chaotic track. Crimson Sky has a very psychedelic start and then the acoustic guitars kick in. The vocals are very ethereal and then the track really develops with some great guitar playing. Inner Realm, is 5½ mins and the last track on the CD. IT also features some really cool guitar playing. This is a very good new psychedelic rock band and they feature a really nice female singer with a lot of personality. I look forward to the new record very much.

Dragontears- Turn on Tune In Fuck off (Bad Afro AFROLP040)

Lorenzo and the old On Trial guys are having a great time with this side band to their other main bands. This is the 3rd record in 3 years and it is more psychedelic than the last record and also has some pretty cool artwork. The first 500 copies of the vinyl come with a free 7” record with two additional tracks. The LP starts off with the 60’s space rock track Two Tongue Talk. Really cool reverb guitar, farfisa, spaced vocals and a great bouncing bass line combined with space synth sounds makes for a killer track. No Salvation has a long spacey guitar intro and Guf’s vocals have never sounded better. I am not a big fan of the falsetto backing vocals that are used on this track but the rest is great and the lead guitars on the record are great. My Friend starts off with some acoustic guitar and space sounds and is a nice ballad track. Time of no Time will really remind people of Wooden Shjips with is hypnotic bass line. Side B is very psychedelic and starts with William, dedicated to William Skotte Olsen, a very special Danish artist how died in 2005. It is also very psychedelic 10min + track. Very spaced out and trippy mind stuff. The LP ends with Mennesketvilling (Human Twin), and I don’t think it is any relation to the old On Trial song of the same title. It is sung in Danish so might remember some people of Spids Nøgenhat, which most of the same folks as Dragontears. The 7”, for those lucky enough to get a copy is two more uptempo songs. Not as cool as the track on the rare RepoMan 7” but still solid tracks. Another really cool record.

Death rides a Horse- Pantokrator (DRaH 002)

Death rides a horse is a local Copenhagen heavy metal band. The band is a 4 piece with a female singer, who also plays bass. The band reminds me a bit of Chastain with the female singer, who is very good. This EP features 4 tracks in 27 mins and includes a very good version of Fly to the Rainbow by the Scorpions to end the EP. Beyond the Granite Threshold start things off with a 80s heavy metal style track with strong dual riffing, powerful vocals and a heavy ending.  The title track will remind many people of the band, The Sword. It is a mid paced melodic track but also a killer riff at times and a lot of dynamics of slower and faster parts. The Eye sounds a lot like the Sword and 80s metal with a female vocalist singing some very melodic lines and also quite powerful at times. This is pretty good stuff and while not the most original it is well delivered and they write strong songs. They are also a good live band. I have seen them twice.

Count Raven/Griftegård 7” (Van Records 41)

This is a limited edition 7” in 300 copies with two exclusive tracks. The Count Raven side is a track called Wolfmoon. If you don't know the band they play melodic DOOM and the singer has an amazing voice that sounds like Ozzy did in the 70s and 80s.. It begins with some keyboards and then a killer bass line kicks in. This is a uptempo and very melodic almost radio friendly Count Raven but still very cool. The Griftegård track, Wedded to Grief, is a very operatic piece with a couple of very cool sections and a great guitar solo. It is a 7min track or something. If you are a fan of these bands, this is well worth hunting down. There is also deluxe version available for like 15€ and this includes the CD of the two tracks as well.