COUNCIL OF BEARDS

The original Stone Tavern hosted an annual, multi-day party dubbed Council of Beards. It’s easy to think this was some kind of hippy or stoner-doom festival with a name like that, but the reality is that it was a shrine to rock and roll in all its various colors and shapes. In any case, when the lease ran out, so did the Council of Beards… or did it?!

This February 9th and 10th, the Outpost presents Council of Beards 2018, sponsored by Lucci’s Place. Any party sponsored by a restaurant is almost guaranteed to be a good time, and this is no exception. Over these two days, a fine selection of rock and roll bands are going to play for you, and you are going to be there, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed for them. Right?

FRIDAY
goosed – Everyone gets goosed, right off the bat at the Council of Beards this year. Their record will be out by then, and you should have it committed to memory in time for the performance. Also, brush up on your Whiplash lyrics and timing so you can front them playing it and tell all your friends and family about the one time you sang for a band that was better than all of your meager artistic expressions, excluding that killer plant stand you crafted back in high-school shop class.

Weird Peni$ – These dudes dish out some gnarly, heavy rock and roll that’s lean and mean and guaranteed to kick you right in your reproductive parts, weird or not.

bowl – A spin-off from Resinaut, bowl will show up to stone you out of your gourd, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Rational Dads – Ripping, fast, hardcore punk from Rational Dads will make you consider having kids just so you can be rational as well.

Modem – This Modem has nothing to do with your internet access, but they can surely make you move your butt with their aggressive grooves and massive riffs.

rebreather – These legendary volume dealers are back in business and have resumed kicking your ass into outer-space. Let out all your frets and concerns and let the fury of rebreather sooth your soul.

Actual Form – Actual Form kicks major behind as well, and this supergroup of supershredders will be sure to blow you apart and stitch you crudely back together when they’re done.

SATURDAY
Speedfreak – Experimental hardcore punk from some Kent-ites. What could go wrong?

SAP – The raw, pissed punk rock train continues with SAP and I’m sure the kids will be a sweaty, heaving mass by the time their set is over.

Velcats – Ok, I’ll admit I don’t know anything about this band. I can’t find them online either, but chances are, they know a thing or two about rock and roll and are interested in sharing the results of their study with you, the listener.

supercorrupter – Aw yeah! We ride again, with our first public performance since last August! Woah! We’re gonna kick out some jams, buddies, let me tell you! Big meaty riffs will collide in your earspace like two pachyderms pile-driving each other into the dirt. It’ll be a thing of beauty OR it’ll be an exercise in exploding amplifiers. Either way, you win.

the Oxnards – Hell yeah! Oxnards are back as well! Dang, this band is fun, bringing high energy garage rock and old-school punk rock to the ring for a knock-down, drag out bruiser of a set. I’m pumped about this!

THIGH – This two piece may have you fooled into expecting some namby-pamby wussed out junk, but you’d be way off mark ’cause they’re packing plenty of boogie and attitude to get that tired butt of yours movin’ again after The Oxnards are done with ya! Let their rock and roll science experiment leave you a mutated mess on the floor.

Revisiter – Uh oh… here’s another one I can’t speak to. Whoops. Playing this late in the day pretty much guarantees you’re gonna get something good, so don’t sleep on them.

Foul Spirits – You know Foul Spirits right? I don’t even have to tell you about these cats, right? Come on! They’ve been at it for years, ripping out some of that raunchiest metal Kent has ever seen. Fast and mean and full of reasons to bang your head and your fist. These guys know how to set phasers to Kill, ’cause sometimes Stun just isn’t good enough.

Khaki Blazer – Dang it, I don’t know anything about Khaki Blazer either. A quick run-down of the Bandcamp page sets expectations: electronic, hip-hop, industrial experimental noise. Whew. That’s a lot going on. You’d be silly not to come see this live and in the flesh.

SexyPigDivas! – SexyPigDivas! have been at it for a while now, but I have to admit I know very little about them, other than knowing that Bill Govan (goosed, Ravenna Arsenal, etc.) is playing bass for them now. I’m really not sure what to expect from the band now that they’re a four piece, but I know it’s gonna be impressive. The songs I have heard of theirs are playful and interesting and definitely not too be missed!

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COUNCIL OF BEARDS

ALBUM REVIEW: PILLÄRS – ABANDONED

Full disclosure, I like the people in Pillärs. I’ve talked with them a lot, both online and in-person, and have played a couple of gigs with them. I love their live sound and I think their songwriting is solid. They’re one of my favorite active Cleveland bands. I reviewed their 2015 demo and was excited for this, their first official LP. I wasn’t disappointed. The band does a great job of bashing out punk influenced sludge, or maybe it’s sludge influenced punk? Either way, it’s crusty; they play fast, they play slow – they race through speedy bits and lean into massive riffs all the same. The result is a dynamic listen that never gets stale.

The mix sounds a little thin for sludge, but sounds spot on for hardcore punk. The bass doesn’t get a lot of love in the mix. You can hear it, but the bottom heavy punch of the live show isn’t recreated on the album. The guitars get plenty of focus, often overshadowing the bass by way of my ear’s frequency response. The drums are loud and proud (and executed flawlessly by All Dinosaurs alum Mike Burrows), with the cymbal wash being maybe a tad too high for my tastes at times. The vocals are down in among the muck of the riffs and I feel that’s right where they should be. They sound great – neither detached from the music by being too prominent nor pointless texture (at best) by being mixed too low. Zach’s vocal is the primary, but Beth’s backup vocals add another great dimension at times. All in all, there’s a raw, urgent feel to the record.

This is killer. Get it! – Jason

Last Rites – This track was on the band’s 2015 demo and I thought it kicked ass then. Now, with a couple of years of heavy gigging and gear upgrades, it sounds even better. This is a ripper of a track that covers all sorts of ground, from blistering D-beat romps to raunchy neck-wrecking riffs. Thumbs way up!

Nothing Left – After a flawless transition from Last Rites, this song settles in on a huge, neck-wrecking riff that serves well at abusing your vertebrae. When the verse sets in, the band takes on an almost noise-rock cadence and I’m happy as a pig in… well, you know.  Look, this was also on the 2015 Demo, but sounds so much better here it’s ridiculous. Germaniuk’s vocals sound so good on this track – just pissed! The stoner riff about three minutes in another excellent shift as the band jams out a bit and Germaniuk solos. Killer.

Through The Storm – After the slog fest of bloody knuckles that was Nothing Left, this track is back to a fast isn’t fast enough philosophy. I’m pumping my fist in delight as the band rips along. Beth adds some cool co-vocals on this track. The details in the guitar parts give the song a lot of atmosphere beyond the ugly riffing that inspires the most foul of stink-faces. Good stuff!

Pale Horse – This one has an old school Kylesa vibe to it, which is cool because it makes me remember why that band was so rad, and then makes me sad because they went out on such a lame note. This is a head-banger! The blasting details give the song a blackened vibe as well, but when they start chug-chugging about two minutes in, kiss your butt goodbye. Thumbs way up!

Walking Ghost – This is another reboot of a prior demo track. The melodic shouting/scream vocal sounds great on this slow-burning track, and the band rides the huge groove like a bad-ass motor-scooter. Welcome to slow-bang city! The vocal duet through the middle is a nice detail, with Beth’s vocals softening up Germaniuk’s more visceral bark. This is another cool track with a bit of a stoner jam-out ending, culminating in sheets of feedback.

Beneath The Ice – Blasting out of the gate with a blacked chord progression, this track quickly gets to ripping. My face is locked in permanent scowl as I bang my head, my fist, and my feet into anything and everything. Killer. When the riff around a minute fifteen lands, I’m kicked square in the chest and I like it. More please.

When Towers Fall – This track features some vocal trade offs that give the band another cool look. This is the most melodic track on the record, but I’m not 100% into this one. Maybe I’ll come around on it more after more listens. The part around three and half minutes in is a sweet ride, for sure. I’m also into the bass break and blasting that follows. It’s safe to say I like the last half of the track a whole lot, while the first half is just ok.

Behind The Wall – Another redux from the 2015 Demo, but once again light years better production/execution. This one is a dark, heavy, neck-wrecker. I loved the co-vocals on the demo, and they still sound great. Again – they end the song with an extended post-rock kind of jam-out and it’s still cool. Thumbs up.

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ALBUM REVIEW: PILLÄRS – ABANDONED

THIS HERE BLOG…

I’ve been getting a few emails about the album reviews, and wanted to clear things up for anyone that’s confused.

  1. Yes, these really are “off the cuff” reviews, generally based on up-to-three listens via streaming from Bandcamp through my stock Apple headphones. I try my best to give these albums my full attention, and sometimes a track that I think is rather dull might actually turn out to be your favorite after repeated listens. That’s just how it goes.
  2. Wherever possible, I have included a link in the body of each review to take you straight to the BandCamp stream. I guess I could try to embed the Bandcamp player in each review, but that’s extra time and clicks for me and I’d rather send people straight to the band’s site for easier purchase (if that’s what they’re into). Look for the hyperlinks in the reviews and click through to listen! Nothing used to bother me more than reading reviews (in the old days) and only being able to dream about what the record sounded like. Now you can click through and kick out the jams immediately!
  3. I only write up reviews of stuff I enjoyed. I have listened to a slew of garbage records from bands that are both well known and flying below the radar; some comically bad. It’s easy to write negative reviews because there is a lot of hot trash out there on the internet, but I’d rather highlight some cool stuff that other people might be interested in. Even an album I enjoy might have a few clunkers rolling around within its track listing, and that’s ok. Not everything can be a masterpiece.
  4. Submissions are ok, but again, I won’t write up anything unless I enjoyed the experience. No hard feelings, ok?
  5. This is all for fun and I’m just one guy (the other guys in the band don’t seem to want to share in the fun!). I may tend to use a limited vocabulary to describe these records because I’m doing these quick during moments of down time. You try writing 170 (and counting) reviews without using the same terms more than once. 😉
THIS HERE BLOG…

ALBUM REVIEW: AKULA – AKULA

Full disclosure, I’m internet pals with 3/5s of this band. Hailing from Columbus, OH, Akula (a-koo-la) is made up of members of bands like Artillery Breath, Bridesmaid, Sleepers Awake, and Lo-Pan, and this is their debut release.

The cool thing about Akula, is that this project doesn’t necessarily sound like any of its members’ other bands. Instead, Akula focuses much more on exploring the same types of ideas as bands like Akron’s Dolly Trauma or the Postman Syndrome. DT was a heavy band that was just as inspired by Tori Amos as Melvins, and Akula follows suit with emotive, vulnerable vocals that are paired with dramatic, meaty riffs. I will add that their heavier riffs are more akin to Isis/Pelican. So – heavy shoe gaze with post-hardcore leanings kind of sums it up?

These four tracks span over forty minutes, the longest cut weighing in at nearly 13 minutes, the shortest at just over nine. On initial listens, it was easy to get lost in the duration of the tunes, as the song would eventually reprise back to an earlier idea and leave me somewhat disoriented (wait… what track am I on?). By the third listen, all was right in the world. The mix is clean and sounds great. The bass is nice and fat but never overshadows either of the dual guitars. Speaking of, the guitars do a great job of complimenting each other throughout, and they sound great to boot with plenty of tonal variety. The drums have plenty of attack, and a good amount of body; they cut through with ease but are also felt. The beats themselves are creative, with interesting accents and details. The vocals are one area where familiarity comes to roost. Martin’s vocals are very recognizable from his time with Lo-Pan, and he delivers more of the same: powerfully smooth, melodic lines that sound almost effortless. He’s got a great voice, but I do know many folks who’ve mentioned how they wish he had some other vocal tricks up his sleeve. Given the slow, mournful tone of Akula, I think his approach fits well.

My only complaint is that the record only has one gear and some more drastic tempo shifts might have been a nice touch. Otherwise, this is some more excellent heaviness, courtesy of the great state of Ohio. Check this out! – Jason

A Pound Of Flesh – The right channel guitar part during the first minute of this track is cool, as it conjures up an image of a high atmosphere projectile of some sort in my mind’s eye. The opening bass line of Scott Hyatt is simple, but really cool as well. When the vocals come in, so does the heaviness as the band switches to an uglier, more powerful riff. Martin’s vocal is strong (no surprise) and carries a bit of a down-trodden vibe. From here, the song slides from movement to movement, often transitioning by way of a slick guitar break and the introduction of another melodic theme. The abrupt ending and spacey outro does an excellent job of instilling an aura of dread to set-up the following track. Cool stuff.

Forces Me Open – The busy guitar lick that opens this track recalls late 90s metal to me, especially with regards to the acoustic/clean guitar that seems to be buried in the mix. This blossoms nicely a bit past the minute mark when the gain comes up and the drums get busier. This main riff is a slow-burner, for sure. The next big change features a pretty tough riff and I’m banging my head thoroughly. Slowly you realize the band has latched onto a killer groove and I’d smile if my face wasn’t twisted up in agreement with the riff. Six and half minutes in, I’m suddenly greeted with a mean, palm-muted chugga-chugga riff. What is this? I’m surprised, and faked out to expect some killer, imminent double timing/ass-kicking or something, but instead of a busy barrage, we get tightly paired double-bass kicks that hammer home the chugs nicely. Reprising earlier parts of the song, the band wraps it all up and ties it with a bow that I’d give a thumbs up.

Born Of Fire – Ringing chords and subtle feedback opens this song, continuing for over a minute until the riff takes shape. The vocal sounds great on top of the lone guitar, but even better when the band finally joins in a few bars later. This track feels a bit slower than the last, and the deliberate pace inspires massive body rocking and the stinkiest of stink faces. It’s a cool tune. This track has more of a doom/stoner vibe to it than the prior tracks due to the phrasing and vibes these riffs are giving me. The bass-lead transition starting around six minutes in, ups the doom and gloom ante, but it’s the busy snare hits that bring it home and the wavering guitars that set the mood. Soon, they’re once again firmly entrenched in a heavy groove that provides a one-way ticket to waking up with a bang-over. I’m once again digging the “experimental” outro that plays out the last-minute or so of the track. Rad.

Predators – This track opens with another sluggish, pounding groove that demands participatory-ribbon level head-bobbing. I don’t know if I’m feeling the initial vocal melody on this one, which seems to have much more of a MJK kind of vibe to it. It’s rather busy compared to the rest of the record. Luckily, things switch up about 2:45 in, and I’m back on board, especially the killer vocal climax starting around 4:35 in! “You die alone!” I want to call out the sweet guitar harmonies/doubling used in this song, as they give it a massive, but seasick kind of sound, particularly prior to the extended mid-section jam that rips hard. My foot is stomping and my neck’s getting sore. The ending sequence of this track (beginning around the nine minute mark) is sweet, thanks especially to the vocal wailing over the mournful chord progression. It takes on an almost hopeful, or ascendant sound. Thumbs up!

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ALBUM REVIEW: AKULA – AKULA

ALBUM REVIEW: DRUNK IN HELL – DRUNK IN HELL

Ok, here’s another one courtesy of Tarek Ahmed via an “Outsider Hardcore” Facebook group he invited me to. Dang, this is a nasty record with simple, powerful riffs and grooves that are pile-driven into your head via nearly excessive repetition. I think this band hails from the UK, and I think they’ve been around for a while. YouTube videos even suggest some of these songs are a couple of years old, even if the record just came out (according to their Bandcamp).

The record is a sonic uppercut with everything sounding huge and mean. The bass is gritty and full-bodied, rumbling along in conjunction with the guitars (which sound great by the way) and the beefy drums. Feedback washes over you between (and within) songs, and the vocals sound pissed. The band is somewhat one-dimensional in that they don’t pack a ton of riffs into each track and instead focus on relentless repetition and adherence to the groove. The end result is near constant stink-face and head-banging. Dang. The way feedback ends and starts every track almost makes the listener feel like they’re experiencing this live, in a gnarly basement somewhere.

If you are into Unsane, early Today Is the Day, Bloodlet, EyeHateGod, etc., then you best check this out! – Jason

I’m An Arsehole – The record opens with thirty plus seconds of feedback and I’m punching my ticket to ride. The band comes pounding in on a tectonic plate shifting riff that demands full body undulation and obedience. Hot damn! The groove is a mile deep and the vocals are fierce! This track is on a single-minded mission to wreck your neck and punch you in the gut and delivers in buckets. So heavy! Thumbs way up.

Sick Sick Sex – The feedback continues from the opening cut and the right channel guitar introduces the main riff for this track before the whole band comes crashing in on the groove. I’m stuck in full stink-face and an outside observer may think I’ve transmogrified into a bobble-head doll. Dang! This song is so dang catchy behind a powerful riff that relentlessly drives forever forward. Thumbs up!

Bitch Boy – This may be the most dynamic track on the album (they actually alternate riffs) and it’s a ripper. It’s also catchy! The rhythmic shift in the “B” riff is a nice contrast to the main part. If my brain could speak, it would ask me to stop slamming it around inside this worn out skull of mine, but I can’t. Drunk In Hell won’t let me. They even put a climax ending of sorts on this track. Thumbs way up!

I’m Not Laughing – Sweet Jesus! The riff that drives this song is a brute! Aw man, it comes out swinging for your sensitive bits and nails it. This track is so pissed and mean sounding. I’m loving it. The shrieking feedback throughout the song is killer and my poor neck is wearing out from this constant abuse. This song jams so hard! Thumbs way up!

Born Sick – Ooof! The pounding that opens this track cuts the tempo and the evil “verse” riff takes some apparent cues from Bloodlet. Aw crap! This track is a total neck-wrecker, proving the old adage “keep it simple, stupid” really does work. This is a sludgy, lurching bruiser of a tune. So rad.

Chick Flick – Oh my gosh, the nasty bass intro that opens this track is killer, guitar feedback spilling over and shrieking along while the drums and vocals steadily berate you. When the guitars finally join the riff, hold tight, ’cause you’re going straight to stink face city! Dang! This is another banger!

Gag – Another painfully simple riff emerges from the fog of overwhelming feedback; the song eventually settling in on a pounding, almost reserved sound when the full band kicks in. It feels kind of awkward and clumsy and I’m not into it as much as a result. The groove is lumbering and unsettling; both characteristics that should make me happy, but it’s not. Meh.

Walking Abortion – The noise and wall of feedback that dominates the early part of this track gives way to a more driving beat and the riff takes on some urgency (reminding me of Godflesh). I’m banging my head and my heel as the band feels like it picks up speed (it’s not). The band does a good job of building tension with this rhythm and I’m eager to hear all hell break loose! They deploy some more spoken word style vocals in this track and it works fairly well. As the cymbals start crashing about three minutes in and the vocals break more into a shout, the tension hits its max level…. will there be any release?! No! Instead they actually ease up a bit by about four minutes in and start building again. Oh man, I can’t take this! My foot is stomping along and I’m nodding along uncontrollably. The band rides this riff into the ground, and doing a great job of winding me up as the vocals move from shout to scream. Almost seven minutes in they suddenly slide into a new riff and pound out the climax, guitar noise shrieking along over the meat-headed riff. “Try harder!” Thumbs way up!

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ALBUM REVIEW: DRUNK IN HELL – DRUNK IN HELL

ALBUM REVIEW: DRUNK DAD – RIPPER KILLER

Today, I listened to Portland’s Drunk Dad thanks to a link from Tarek Ahmed from Intercourse. This album was released back in 2014, so it’s old by today’s standards. It also kicks major butt. In an affront to genre tags, the band calls themselves “fuck-you-all-wave.” What does that mean? I guess it’s metalcore played by punks into the Jesus Lizard? When you see words like “free-jazz noise rock” you mentally come up with some expectations that are probably impossible to be met. Bottom line, all semantics aside, what you get is heavy, ugly music that lurches between mid-tempo head-bobbers, faster punk romps, and blast beats.

The recording sounds great. It’s a bottom heavy stew of raunch, with the bass knocking out gritty low-end in conjunction with the thick tone of the drums. The guitars sound great, both pummeling with heavy chords and enhancing the grime with more melodic, higher octave dissonant bits. The vocals flop back and forth between a weird but cool sort of spoken word and an array of pissed screams. They do a good job of keeping the tracks moving along and avoid sounding too one-dimensional by mixing up tempos, rhythms, and moods. After listening to this, I saw that the band does have a newer release that I’ll need to check out.

Check this out! – Jason

Five Pack – This is a heck of an opening cut, the first seconds filled with feedback and guitar noise until they unleash a bloody-knuckle of a riff and a fierce vocal. The track is short but efficient, inspiring foot stomping and head banging. Good stuff.

Life’s Work – This track gets going slow with a somewhat generic, slow hardcore riff. It’s nothing special to be honest, until about a minute in when the band sheds this boring skin and emerges with a much more fierce, more energized rocker. The drums are hyperactive and the riffs come fast and furious. The spoken word that comes in through the bizarre, mostly noise and soundscapes mid-section establish another side to the band. The major banger of a riff that they lurch into afterwards demands full body participation. Thumbs way up!

Fuck In Garbage – Opening with a bending, ugly guitar riff sets the table nicely for this mid-tempo bruiser. My head-banging continues and the vocals shift into a more guttural shouting that reminds me a bit of Rob Zombie’s better moments. The almost melodic chorus vocal took me by complete surprise. This track is a nasty rocker! The Melvins/Red Fang (Murder The Mountains) vibe it’s giving off ain’t a bad thing, either. Gnarly.

Light A Fire – This track comes out of the gate as a furious blast of punk rock fury that rides a pretty killer chord progression and opens with a killer scream. The lurching, Daughters-like staccato bass riff that they ride through the middle of the song also gives the track a bit of an old-school Liars vibe. I love it. The noise elements of the band provide some neat details until eventually taking over completely for the extended outro with the sound of sheet metal bending and things being banged around. Good stuff.

S.O.U. – The hardcore riff that they bastardized to open this tune is thick and gnarly and reveals perhaps a bit of an Unsane influence on Drunk Dad. The furious snare rolls through the intro contrast the slow riff nicely. The spoken word vocal doesn’t show up until about two minutes in, and at first it feels a little disconnected from the music. Thankfully, the guitars step up their game with some upper register atmospherics and the vocals begin to ascend scream mountain and take the tune someplace cool. It winds up being an ok track.

Ripper Killer – After the molasses crawl of the prior track, the speed of this track comes as a nice surprise. This is a ripper with a primal, punk-rock Neurosis-inspired vibe. I’ve got a bad case of stink face and I’m banging my head. Heck yeah. The vocals do a great job of evolving from spoken word to screams and then ratcheting the intensity back down, giving the tune plenty of dynamic drama to match the battery of riffs being thrown at you. Once again, the noise details (static, weird delays/reverb) add to the sonic soup nicely. Drunk Dad covers a ton of ground on this track and all of it is bad ass in its own way. Thumbs way up.

Worthless – Noise dominates this track, which is admittedly a better outro for Ripper Killer than a stand-alone track. It never really goes anywhere or does anything cool.

Whiskey Liver – Heck yeah! The band is back to ripping with the furious barrage of an opening salvo that kick starts this tune. A little past thirty seconds in, they half-time ii and it’s welcome back to head-bang city. This one has a late 90s stoner metal vibe to it and I’m all in. This one is a brute, from the massive neck-wrecker of a riff they are riding to the tasteful guitar leads. With about a minute left, the song takes a left turn into a tribal pounding beat that eventually leads into a meaty chugga-chugga part that’s got me all stink-faced and kicking the carpet in delight. Rad.

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ALBUM REVIEW: DRUNK DAD – RIPPER KILLER

ALBUM REVIEW: PSYCHEDELIC PORN CRUMPETS – OLD NEWS FOR NEW PEOPLE (HIGH VISCERAL B-SIDES)

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you may recognize this band name (it’s awful, so it’s easily memorable). They put out two fantastic volumes of a record called High Visceral in 2016 and 2017 respectively, and here we have another release from those sessions in the form of the left-over tracks. These tracks don’t feel quite as developed as some of the tracks released on the proper album, and I imagine that’s why they were released in this fashion. That’s not a dis, as the material is still strong.

As with the prior two releases, the mix is perfect and there isn’t much more to say. These songs sound wonderful and warm as they wash over you. The musicianship on display is impressive. These dudes are great players. It’s just so good. Get on it! – Jason

Terraqueous – Stealing a bit of a page from Magic Carpet Ride, the EP opens with a sustained fuzzy tone before the band comes in hard. This track rides a heavy groove with ease, showing off their stoner swagger with ease. It’s easily reminiscent of bands like Dead Meadow. They dial it way back for the vocal break, but all in all, this is a hard-rocking, guitar heavy track. Speaking of, there’s a ton of guitar wash (or noise?) in the mix that gives it a dense, foreboding vibe over the plodding bass and orchestral sounding synth work. Thumbs way up!

Little Moon – This track follows much in the same vein as the opener, with a loud, bombastic riff that boogies like there is no tomorrow before easing up when the vocals come in. The opening riff here smokes! I’m banging my head and my heels and my fist and smiling all the way! When the song eases up for the vocals, it takes on a nostalgic 60s vibe, with a dark guitar melody. This is another rad track with solid vocal melodies and plenty of rocking out. Thumbs way up!

Made Machine – Bleeding out of Little Moon, this track ups the trippy ante with a Bowie-esque take on psychedelia. It’s slower, less hectic, and much more reserved than the prior tracks, but much more lush. It’s the kind of tune that can take you out of this world if you let it. The non-stop groove of the bass and the jazzy beat give the song a pleasant swing, but the bits of bombast they throw in as accents (especially as you approach the end) also make you bob your head in delight. The production on this track is so dang smooth and timeless! I love it.

Pi – This track is smooth sailing, calmly grooving along with ease. It’s not a terribly exciting song, but it’s not a clunker by any means. This band has two main looks – a ripping stoner prog band and a stoner pop band (Oasis, supergrass, etc.). This falls into the latter. This is good rainy day psychedelia, washing over and surrounding the listener with ease. I like it.

Entropy II – This track is short and spacey with hints of Mr. Bungle and Bowie and I’m into it. It’s super chill, with excellent synthesizer accents and a walking bass line that’s impossible not to follow with your heel. Cool. It doesn’t really take me anywhere, but it’s not bad.

The Thinker – Opening with a gentle, busy guitar bit and a winding vocal melody, this track is another chill number that builds up nicely. There is something rather familiar about this track, but I can’t place it at the moment, especially the way the drumbeat sort of fades in. This is a pleasant splash of bubble-gum pop filtered through prog nerds. I dig it.

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ALBUM REVIEW: PSYCHEDELIC PORN CRUMPETS – OLD NEWS FOR NEW PEOPLE (HIGH VISCERAL B-SIDES)