Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Leprous - Coal (Album Review)

Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 20/5/2013
Label : InsideOut Music

 Coal, album track listing:

1. Foe (5:17)
2. Chronic (7:19)
3. Coal (6:50)
4. The Cloak (4:09)
5. The Valley (8:59)
6. Salt (4:30)
7. Echo (9:41)
8. Contaminate Me (9:04)


Chosen as backing band for former Emperor frontman and countryman Ihsahn - a progressive black metal musician / legend in his own right, LEPROUS has despite their young age tried it all, and it’sno surprise that their music reflects that. For every part Pain Of Salvation and King Crimson onemay hear, there is an equal amount of Shining (NO) or Devin Townsend to balance it out. Hints of Katatonia or Opeth float around amidst sparks of Porcupine Tree and Pink Floyd.

The absolute pinnacle of their career, this far, is however “Coal” – the brand new album which willbe released on May 20th, 2013 in Europe and May 28th, 2013 in North America via InsideOutMusic.“Coal” was produced by Heidi Solberg Tveitan and Vegard Tveitan of Mnemosyne together with LEPROUS and mixed by Jens Bogren as well as mastered by Tony Lindgren at Fascination Street Studios (Kreator, Opeth, Symphony X; etc.).

Einar Solberg - synth/vocals
Tor Oddmund Suhrke - guitar
Øystein Landsverk - guitar
Tobias Ørnes Andersen - drums


Coal is the fourth album from Norwegian progressive metal outfit, Leprous. Their new long player is a monster of a record.

Opening track ‘Foe’ builds an astounding amount of layers to the music whilst retaining an air of simplicity. The vocals on this track and throughout this album are very unique. The vocal range displayed is superb. Well controlled high pitched screams are mixed with anguish ridden growls to create a crushing, yet beautiful mix. It is this vibrancy and inimitable style that makes for such an exciting listen. The track closes with a repeated vocal harmony before crashing into second track; ‘Chronic.’

‘Chronic’ is a far more upbeat and heavy affair. The time changes are frequent and the 7 minute plus length is littered with down tuned riffs, odd time signatures and more stunning vocal work. One thing the band does well on ‘Chronic’ is to not go for the cliché solo at the end of the track. They tease it, and no doubt would produce some awesome fret board work, but it’s nice to not go for the easy option. Instead, the band opts for a punishing mix of distorted guitars, drum and synth.

The album continues in the same vein with the highly atmospheric and epic ‘The Valley.’ The band tips their collective hat to the modern metal landscape with a Ghost-esque introduction before some highly technical work from the rhythm section. An off beat rhythm is held together by a snare cymbal. The cymbal is then joined by the bass and more soaring, otherworldly vocals. This sounds like something that Iron Maiden could have used on Final Frontier. The track builds and builds, layer by layer again which just builds a tension akin to a can being shaken up. The wait ,for it to explode keeps you on a knife edge. When it does explode…it is phenomenal. A glorious last few minutes may well be one of the best sections of music I have heard this year.

‘Salt’ segues seamlessly from ‘The Valley’ and has an opening that has a West End musical feel. More glorious progressive sensibilities are explored before the first of two 9 minute plus tracks end the album with aplomb. ‘Echo’ is very progressive. The synths are laid on thick and mantra like vocals are surrounded by more devastating guitars.  Album closer, ‘Contaminate Me,’ is one of the heaviest things at work here. The vocals which include Ihsahn are a lot harsher and the band is a lot more destructive. They smash down anything in their path, which almost feels like a full album of pent up anger being unleashed in one fell swoop. It’s an awesome way to end a great record.

Coal is an album that could take a few listens, but be warned, if you get dragged in, you will be hooked. My advice; get dragged in. The ride is immense. This is one of the best pieces of progressive metal around at the moment.

Words by: Dominic Walsh (

As ever, show your support to the band by checking them out at the various links.  You can buy the record here. This record is available now. Thanks to Freddie @ InsideOut for hooking us up

The Lumberjack Feedback - Hand of Glory EP (Review)

Album Type : EP
Date Released : 2/7/2013
Label: Kaotoxin Records

Hand of Glory, track listing:
1). A Whisper to the Thunder 08:46
2). The Dreamcatcher 08:21

“Loud and Low”, here’s The Lumberjack Feedback’s motto. Heavy, intense and catchy instrumental Doom (yes, no vocalist involved) with two drummers (yes, two of them!) with dynamics and contrasts ; an hypnotizing, mesmerizing soundtrack to apocalypse. Wall crumbles, Earth cracks and the gates of Hell open wide: this is Hell on Earth and it has never been so magnificent as earthquake now has a name: The Lumberjack Feedback!
Deep droning bass and primitive twin-percussions as a roaring low-end thunder ridden by dark melodies crafted by the pair of guitarists like silver surfers riding a tsunami, this is all what The Lumberjack Feedback is all about: a weak beauty topping a tornado of devastating primal elements

Simon Herbaut – guitars
Arnaud Silvert – guitars
Sebastien Tarridec – bass
Nicolas Tarridec – drums
Christopher Poirier – drum

The Lumberjack Feedback start things heavy and raw with this EP and that is exactly how things continue. “A Whisper To The Thunder” is all un-dampened drums with thick low riffing. The press release proclaims the band's motto to be: “Loud and Low”- an accurate summation.

To be fair, instrumental doom is never going to be a big seller or commercial in any way- but if you enjoy the sound of doom rather that the attendant image/current trend for liking it then this EP is very worthy of your time.
For your money you get an EP that is limited to 1000 copies, a massive sound and two drummers (yes, that's correct) playing tight but loose.  The sound is dynamic and combines very slow passages with rhythmical and very heavy riffing at a more mid paced stomp.

The Dreamcatcher” is the second track on offer here and starts atmospherically with the drummers answering each other in call and response style while the bass rumbles and underpins the percussive motif. The twin guitars (dream) weave effectively over this rather mountainous terrain to build the track effectively with some good/sinister vibes.  More of a slow burner, the track lights up around the half way point and things get very heavy indeed.

If you like your doom crushing and epic- and fancy trying something a bit different then why not give this excellent band a try? It ticks all the boxes and offers a rather unique slant on a familiar sound.

Words by : Richard Maw

As ever, show your support to the band by checking them out at the various links.  You can buy it here.  Thanks to Clawhammer PR for the hook up. 

Age of Taurus - Desperate Souls of Tortured Times (Album Review)

Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 27/5/2013
Label : Rise Above Records

Desperate Souls of Tortured Times, album track listing:
1). A Rush of Power 06:04
2). Sinking City 06:04
3). Always in the Eye 05:10
4). Walk with Me, My Queen 06:09
5). Desperate Souls of Tortured Times 05:18
6). Embrace the Stone 08:02
7). The Bull and The Bear 05:11

Welcome to the Taurean Empire; a decaying land where disease, war and corruption is rife. A wretched place of man and beast, where deception, fear and despair fills every dank alleyway and the stench of suffering drifts across endless, sun-scorched plains. As way of ensuring safe passage through this hellish hour, let us introduce your guides for the journey; four road-hardened mortals, brought together by luck, power and coincidence. Ladies and Gentlemen, take up arms and go safely as Age of Taurus show you a world inhabited by the Desperate Souls of Tortured Times....

Formed in 2009 by vocalist/guitarist Toby Wright, Age of Taurus was initially a one-man doom metal mission. Inspired by masters of the craft like Candlemass, Trouble and Revelation, the project was intended more as a studio affair rather than something more alive. However, after increasing interest in the band and a succession of glowing reviews of debut demo 'In the Days of the Taurean Empire', Toby decided that there was no turning back and duly put together a fully working line up; enter bassist Richard Bruce, lead guitarist Alastair Riddell and drummer Darius Claydon.

The band quickly began writing together and started to develop and define a sound that suited their combined musical direction. With their feet still firmly planted in the doom metal field, the group were able to explore other paths of influence, particularly bass-driven seventies hard rock and the oh-so-punishing twin guitar attacks that ruled the speakers during NWOBHM's golden years


Richard Bruce – Bass
Darius Claydon – Drums
Alastair Riddell – Lead Guitar
Toby Wright – Guitar, Vocals

Age of Taurus is a London doom outfit of style and pedigree with the backing of Rise Above Records. If that doesn't pique your interest then perhaps you are reading the wrong blog!

Featuring at least one man who you have seen at every metal gig you have ever been to in London.  The bar is set high from the off “A Rush of Power” opens proceedings with lumbering grooves, big sound and rumbling low end. The vocals of Toby W Wright are high and clear. Wright's voice reminds me a little of Kevin Heybourne's of Angel Witch (a certain vulnerable quality, perhaps?) and for doom that is an excellent thing. Mournful cries, indeed.

Sinking City” come on strong with some excellent guitar work (again, mournful in both riffs and leads) and a great bass sound. The mix is clear and the drums crush rather than rattle or snap.   Always In The Eye” is both a timely reminder of how dangerous fun ends and also brings some swing to the album. The main riff is insistent and is utilised sparingly. Twin guitar parts work well underpinning the verses and the listener gets the impression of craftsmen at work. It's not just riff, shout, time change, shout- the song structures are strong.

Walk With Me My Queen” plods into earshot with leaden feet and is accompanied by vivid lyrical imagery that conjures up regality rather well. True doom here- no aggression, just despair and wistfulness combining with the heaviest of sounds.

The title track “Desperate Souls of Tortured Times” starts slow but the pace is picked up- good variety- and comes on strong with a kind of NWOBHM feel (but professional!).  Embrace The Stone” fairly jumps out of the speakers with some nifty Sword-esque riffing. I love this kind of stuff, so as the drums thunder and the guitars strike like lightning I find myself really enjoying this record.

The Bull and The Bear” is a riff fest- plain and simple. This is the way to close an album out (unless you opt for an acoustic outro, obviously). Myths and legend themes abound in the vocal as the band play out of their skin. True metal, true doom. Hail to England and pick this album up if you like The Gates of Slumber, Saint Vitus, Cathedral, Sabbath, The Sword, Angel Witch etc. And if you don't like most of those bands... why are you reading this?!

Words by : Richard Maw

As ever, show your support to the band by checking them out at the various links.  You can buy the here or just about any other outlets  Thanks to Noise Cartel for hooking us up with the record for review.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Interview with THE MOTH

It gives me great pleasure to be interviewing brilliant German Sludge/Stoner Metallers – The Moth who recently impressed me with their excellent début album – They Fall.

This is what I had to say about this excellent album - “It is hard to believe there are only three people in this band as it feels like double that amount. Riffs come flying you at every corner and the vocals adding layers of tension and excitement unlike anything you have heard this year.

The album is expertly played and produced through out. If you like you’re Sludge/Stoner Metal with an extra layer of lo-fi psychedelic fuzz based vibes then you can’t go wrong here. The Moth deserves your attention now. This album came as a real surprise to me when the band originally contacted me. The album cover might not give anything away but as the famous saying goes – Appearances can be deceiving – Or – Never judge a book by its cover.

And both of them are true for The Moth. Look this album is testament that Germany have another excellent Sludge/Stoner Metal band to call upon. It could be that these Sludge Rockers could be one of my fave discoveries of 2013.”

Well The Moth have kindly agreed an interview with me.

Q1 – Hi there. Thanks for doing this. How are things with you all today?

– Hey Steve! Thank you so much for doing this interview with us, and for supporting us so well. We REALLY appreciate!! At the moment we are still incredulous and thrilled about now being part of the fleet of THIS CHARMING MAN-RECORDS. We got the news only a few days ago.

Q2 – Can you give our readers a brief history of how the band came about.

– Freden and I used to play in a band called „Bangkok Cash“ from 1999 to 2009. The band then split for personal reasons, but Freden and I continued jamming, though the split was a hard thing to digest. In autumn 2011 we decided that we wanted to give it another, real try. Music was just too important to us. We were only two of us and Freden was still playing the drums, as he had in Bangkok Cash, though he is originally a guitarist.

We were looking for a guitarist first, but fortunately had not found one until Freden got back to his roots last year: the strings. That was when THE MOTH really took it's flight, and we finally started writing songs. We then tried out eight drummers, before we asked out Tiffy (Philipp's nickname), whom we forced to stay. He was only with us for a little more than four months before we recorded "They Fall“.

Q3 – How would you describe your music. I would describe it as Psychedelic Sludge/Stoner Metal. But your music has a sublime Progressive edge to it as well.

– You were the first to use the description psychedelic, haha! We would probably describe it as Sludge-Metal to keep it simple. It is so hard to describe music. Sludge comprises so many bands, that have different styles. But what they all have in common is that honest, uncompromising core.

Q4 – How did you all become involved with music.

Cécile: I have played in bands since I was 18. But I had not found a musical home, or how you would call that, not until I heard and met the Sissies in 1997, a band that Freden used to play in and Tiffy also later. It was overwhelming: powerful, angry music like I had never listened it before and I finally knew where I belonged musically. In 1999 Freden, another guy and I founded Bangkok Cash. I couldn't live without music since.

Freden: At 14 I started playing the guitar. My friends and I were mainly listening to heavy-rock, thrash- and death-metal. Very young Tiffy and I started our first metal-band ‘satan claus’ - it was just for fun and we didn't play any concerts. A few years later I founded with some other guys the band ‘sissies’. A mixture between hardcore, heavy-and stoner rock. After the first album Tiffy got into the band and we recorded three more albums till the split in 2005. At that Time, 'bangkok cash', where Cécile played bass and I played drums, became my main-project. It was a pity, when the band broke apart 2009. On the other hand it meant that I returned to my old craft: playing the guitar – and I am very glad about that decision.

Q5 – Which bands/artists/musicians have had a direct influence on your music

Cécile: Sissies album „Fixed“ and High on Fire have had the biggest impact. Then Black Sabbath, Wino, Queens of the Stone Age, Eyehategod, Crowbar, Kylesa, Baroness.

Freden: There is a lot and it would be a long list. I’m mainly interested in mighty and grooving riffs. I think, for example, different bands like cathedral, crowbar, motörhead, bolt thrower, trouble and all the projects of Scott Weinrich have had an influence.

Q6 – Why the name The Moth. Any special reason behind it.

– When songs are under progress, we give them names, that somehow fit. One song was called THE MOTH, cause it reminded us of a chubby moth flying around in the night. When we couldn't agree on any other name, on this one we could.

Q7 – Well what can I say about your brilliant new album – They Fall. Wow. Loved it as you can tell. Thanks for contacting me. Was it a hard album to write and record for.

– No, not at all actually. Some songs we worked on for a rather long time, until we were satisfied, others were done really quick. „They Fall“ was just a few days old when we recorded it. But what actually cost us quite an effort was the vocals.

Neither Freden nor I had ever sung in a band before. So we only began working on the vocals, when almost all the songs were ready. The amount of cola-rum drunken at rehearsals rose dramatically at that time. But it was so much fun just from the beginning... a complete new tool to express ourselves. As to the recording: We recorded all eight songs live in one day. The next day Freden doubled the guitars. On a third day we did all the vocals.

Q8 – I love the dual vocals on the album. It feels like you were both at war with each other which I mentioned in my review. Was that the intention for the album. Carnage against Calm. Order against chaos.

– Haha! No, Steve! We're not yelling at one another, we are yelling at a third party ;)!

Q9 – Did you release the album yourselves on CD. Was that a hard decision to make to release something yourselves. As you guys deserve to be signed because of this album.

– No, it wasn't. We just wanted our music to get out there, and having a label was something that seemed very, very far away. We first planned to record just four songs as a demo so we could apply for gigs and maybe contact labels. But then we thought. Fuck it, let's just record all the songs we have, if we are in the studio anyway. That's what we did.

Then we ordered a hundred copies. We were not sure if a lot of people would like and buy it. We sent one of those to Christian Weinrich frot THIS CHARMING MAN RECORDS. Six weeks later we are on his label. Still cannot believe it.

THEY FALL cover art

Q10 – Who came up with the excellent album cover as it doesn't tell you what to expect. OK it's a moth like your band name but it doesn't give the listener any other clues on what to expect which is a real bonus as well.

– When Florian Zeh was almost ready with the mixing and mastering the artwort needed to be done as well. We didn't want to waste any time. Since we are all the worst drawers, I quite simply googled „moth“ and found a picture of this incredible moth on flickr. In photoshop I turned it into black and white, worked on the contrast and the light – and that was it. We thought: Rather keep it simple. The cover looks just imposing and a bit threatening.

When I contacted the guy who had taken the picture to ask him for permission, that was quite a surprise: He's a scientist working in Singapur, and had discovered this moth-species in Venezuela. He was the first to have photographed it and was in the papers all over the world because of this. But he said: Sure, no problem, take it!

Q11 – How big of a help has BandCamp in getting your music across to the masses.

– bandcamp is really helpful! People check your music and buy your record without you having anything to do, except for playing good songs of course and loading them up. That is what really impresses us about the bandcamp-users: They don't care if you're big or not, or where you are from: All that counts to them is if they like the music or not. Bandcampers have independent opinions, they don't wait for the masses to follow.

Q12 – I am a big fan of the German Sludge/Stoner/Doom Metal scene at the moment. Some great bands coming from their. Voltron, Amber, Aleph Null, your good friends – SHAKHTYOR and one of personal faves – Wolves Carry My Name. Is the German Sludge/Stoner Metal scene thriving at the moment. Are there a lot of gigs and venues for you to perform on a regular basis.

Jes! Somehow people are suddenly very open for and appreciative of this kind of music. We don't know where this comes from.. probably from bands as High on Fire, Kylesa and Baroness, who have smoothed the path for years. But no matter what! People finally seem to be ready for this, so also for us, and we sure like that!

Q13 – In 5 words or less describe the live THE MOTH experience.


Q14 – Are your family and friends supportive of your music.

– Jes, they are! Some really like our style, and those who are not especially into that kind of music, still come to our concerts, because they just want to see their friends onstage, hang around with the tribe, and have fun afterwards.

Q15 – What are your favourite bands you are currently listening to. Any bands that myself or our readers should check out.

– We are all into Shakhtyor. And Rodha, a great Sludge-Band from Hamburg. And the third part of our hometowns Sludge-Tryptichon. You definitely also should check out our label-brothers from Wall, Mountain Witch and Union of Sleep. Cécile still mainly listens to High on Fire and Baroness, Freden to a lot of different metal- and sludge-Bands.

Q16 – If you could provide words to wisdom for people wanting to start a band – What would they be.

– Just do it. There is no excuse not to. If you really want to do it, you'll find your musical soulmates. Sooner or later. Until than, sweat it out.

Q17 – What are the advantages and disadvantages of being in a band. Financial aspect being a part of band could be a major disadvantage.

– There is only one disadvantage: When your band breaks up, that sure sucks. It's like loosing a vital part of yourself.

Q18 – Can you tell us what you have planned over the next 12 months or so.

– Right now, we are just overwhelmed to have signed with THIS CHARMING MAN RECORDS and will release our debut „THEY FALL“ on vinyl there. We are just really, really excited about that one! We are also already working on new songs, and will record our second album as soon as we can. Until then we want to have fun playing gigs, and hope to support some bands we are fans of. Playing in the UK, the Netherlands or the northern countries would be a dream.

Q19 – Finally do you have anything to say to your fans.

– We are really thrilled about each one of you and thank you for believing in us and supporting THE MOTH! Hope to meet you at a concert soon!

Thanks for your time. Best of luck with your album. And congrats on getting the album released on Vinyl. Can't wait to buy that one. 
You can buy The Fall on DD and CD from The Moth’s Bandcamp page.

Check The Band from the following links.


Interview with Switchblade Jesus

Now on Sludgelord it's my pleasure to be interviewing Corpus Christi's finest Sludge/Stoner Metallers – Switchblade Jesus

Switchblade Jesus have just released an incredible début album which is winning praise within the Sludge/Stoner Metal community. And why not. It's a hard rocking experience you will instantly fall in love with.

I said this about their début album.

“Check out other excellent tracks Sick Mouth, Equinox and Renegade Riders which will have you headbanging all over the place. The riffs are played once again at a fast and furious pace. It will leave you breathless at times. But damn... You can't deny the fun you will have doing it. The blues rock vibe does play a big part in the bands music here. But so does the NOLA based riffs lurking in the background. It's a perfect marriage made in Sludge/Stoner Metal Heaven obviously with Switchblade's lining up as Devil Horns in the air.

Production is immense. No wonder these guys have such a great reputation when the album sounds as good as this.”

Well since the guys are huge fans of the blog I had to feature them one more time. So lets get started with these hard rocking renegades.

Q1 – Hi guys.. Thanks for doing this. How are things with you all today

Very great, we have our CD release and Vinyl party coming up in a few at the House of Rock in Corpus and just loving all the feedback from the album.

Q2 – Can you give our readers a brief history of how the band came about.

It started when Eric and Billy got together and just wanted to kill some time, beers and just write. We got ahold of Billy's cousin Jon and he got with his old bassist Jason who both of them were in the Rockabilly band "The High Speed Heartaches", and it started rolling from there. We went through a few singers till we found Pete through craigslist actually, sent him some songs and got together the following week. Hit up local bars and venues then started out of town gigs a few months after.

Q3 – How would you describe your music. I would class it as Blues Based Sludge/Stoner Metal.

That's probably the best way in our opinion, when people ask we usually just say Heavy. It's a big meld of what we listened to as youth and now, thrown into an oven and cooked at 420 degrees. Alot of it is definitely blues based, grew up with alot of Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Sabbath, ZZ Top but you can also hear the influences of mid youth with heavy stuff like Pantera, White Zombie, The Melvins, COC, Down, Fu Manchu ect.

Where we live we're kinda the only of what we are, so we get alot of influence with the bands we play as well, from the blues psych grooveaholic Bertha to the vegan grindcore of Greedy Mouth.

Q4 – Now congrats on your début album. What a brilliant record it is that we rate very highly here at Sludgelord.

Thank you very much, we love Sludgelord and always respected yall's opinion on reviews and of music in general. We put alot into this being it's our first full release, before this we had a 3 track and a few songs on some comps. We sat back with the music after it was recorded and planed out where and when it should be and start. There were a few more songs we had recorded but we felt it didn't fit this album so we're holding onto them for the next release, which we have already started writing for. Sometimes an album doesn't need to have 14+ songs. Cut the fat and keep the goods.

Q5 – Was it hard or easy album to write and record for.

I wouldn't say hard, but at times there were challenges. Getting the levels to were we (us and Chris Darlington) felt that everything sat were it needed to be. Alot of the takes we do are 1 takes, like Pete's vocals on "The Wolves", he kinda knew where he wanted to go, but he walked in the booth, shouted at the world and it went so good we kept that first take. So what you here is the song actually materializing as he's going. Not saying everything was one take, like getting the rhythm guitars up in sync. Recording and live are completely different hahaha.

Q6 – If you had the chance would you change anything about the album. Good or bad.

If anything, maybe the tone of some of the guitars, not really needing too, but if anything that would be it. Love the amp we used, but should've dialed a little more something, but like I said, that's just minor stuff.

Q7 – Where did you guys come up with the name – Switchblade Jesus. That could definitely piss off the religious types in the world.

And it has! Hahaha. It's actually a homage to a friend that looked like Jesus and carried around a switchblade. Once at a bar during a fight someone goes up to Jon and said "don't worry Jesus has a knife" and that's where it all started. It was never ment as a religious stab or anything like that. Originally this band was just us jamming and getting hammered with a bunch of friends that would come to the house, and the name just stuck. We love it actually and have had more positive feedback with it than negative, but in a town that's called Corpus Christi (Body of Christ) we do get some bad stares hahaha.

Q8 – Does the album have a meaning. Or is it a collection of great rocking tracks. Like I said in the review I felt the album was a confession from a tortured soul. Especially on Bastard Son.

It was definitely suppose to be a journey for the listener the way it was put together, a start and end, then when it ends it starts that induced trip again. Alot of the tone has that tortured soul feel cause at the time a few of us were going through some heavy shit and instead of giving up like few do we put our heart and soul into those songs ... like Bastard Son. But these are ment to be beer drink'n, Hell raising, kick'n ass type songs. We wanted the listener to feel what and how we were feeling at that particular time and feel we met that.

Q9 – Bastard Son does include some brutal and hard hitting lyrics. Was that song a hard one to write. As it tells a great tale of a generation of outlaws.

It was more fun than hard I think. It was born after hearing Eric and the guys sick rhythm they came up with. I was sold right away. It felt like it needed to be a song with dark and solid meaning. A life lesson almost. So I chose to create the tortured soul trying to convince himself that life is a two way path and would be up to him to let his ways become corrupted or fight to change what was already instilled in him. A good versus evil within yourself. So once I clicked with the tune, the song simply wrote itself. - Pete

Q10 – Who came up with the design of the excellent album cover. It have a very trippy vibe around it.

Our buddy Trent Westbrook drew up the figure, crows, colored them, then Eric went to town on it. He's actually done alot of stuff for us, he's a comic writer/illustrator and actually has us in one of his comics. We gave him a listen to the album and told him to go for it and this is what we got ... and love it, we couldn't be happier with what we received, he did a killer job in our opinion.

Q11 – How big of a help has BandCamp in getting your music across to the masses.

Very, it's helped us reach an audience we would never had. The album has been selling well over in Europe and have been sending out digipaks to Sweden, Russia, UK and others. For that I'm glad of the media exposure that the internet and places like Bandcamp have.

Q12 – Has the Sludge/Stoner/Doom Metal community been a big help in getting your music across to the masses. Have you received any mainstream attention yet.

I wouldn't say mainstream, but we've got'n a few interview requests from magazines, blogs, and an individual does an online metal cooking show and wants to feature us, great amount of press. But yes they have, with online radio and mixcloud sessions from people like Amplifier Worship and Electric Beard of Doom to great sites like Sudgelord, Heavy Planet, Obelisk, The Soda Shop and others they've really helped push our music to the masses and for that we'll always be eternally grateful.

Q13 – In 5 words or less describe the live Switchblade Jesus experience.

Best fuck'n time you'll have .... or also ... Chaotic fuzz laced drunken madness. Which ever you feel hahaha.

Q14 – What are your views of bands using websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo to fund their new album releases. Some people and bands are for it. Some are not. Would you consider doing some thing like that yourselves.

Not for an album, maybe if we have the chance to hit up Europe we could need some help, but for not an album, just bust your ass, play those $50 gigs and sell the hell out of your merchandise. If you feel you need a $8000+ album that's your own damn fault hahaha.

Q15 – Now I must say congrats in signing a deal with Kozmik Artifactz/Bilocation Records in releasing a vinyl record. How did that come about. Bet your guys are super excited for that. Can you tell us when that will be getting released.

Shit man we're beyond excited, to work with a great label like Kozmik Artifactz/Bilocation Records is amazing. They've put out some very quality stuff and there vinyls themselves are awesome, to get the opportunity to be on vinyl let alone get 180g is very killer. Hopefully late 2013, we're just trying to get everything squared away and also finish up some cool stuff we're going to include in the 100 limited hand numbered one's. There will be standard black, colored and the limited versions....very killer!

Q16 – What are your favourite bands you are currently listening to. Any bands that myself or our readers should check out.

To many to think of, but Wo Fat, Kylesa, Red Fang, Orange Goblin, Graveyard, QOTSA, all the greats and of course to favorites like Zeppelin, WZ, Pantera, Clutch, but like I said alot of local and surrounding guys since we play or at least respect their music like, Bertha, Cavegirl, Anthem for the Sun, Axis of Harmony, Echo, Sun Salutation just a few from Corpus, and surrounding we have Wo Fat, The Dirty Seeds, Mothership, Project Armageddon, Las Cruces, Venomous Maximus, The Well, Unmothered, Orthodox Fuzz and the killer Southern Train Gypsy. Tons of music here in Texas that needs to get out.

Q17 – Do you guys tour a lot in your home town or do you have to travel further a field to perform on a regular basis.

A good amount in town because the closes place is San Antonio which is 2 hours, but that hasn't stopped us, we play all over Texas, except the one place we haven't had anything booked yet is Dallas which will be soon, we've been talking with our good friends in Wo Fat and will be doing some killer shows with them soon. Traveling doesn't bother us at all.

Q18 – If you could provide words to wisdom for people wanting to start a band – What would they be.

Keep playing on what you feel. Don't try and be the next this or that cause you wont go anywhere, and your not getting paid in the beginning so get over that haha.

Q19 – What are the advantages and disadvantages of being in a band. Financial aspect being a part of band could be a major disadvantage.

Advantages - everything, we love what we do and have a blast doing it...really like the surprise beer tabs when we go to a new venue. There's disadvantages in everything you do in life .... but with this can't think of any, the financial aspect will only be a problem if you let it. Yea it costs gas and food, but if you plan ahead of time and make sure you get some kind of cut from the show for hotel/food/gas ect your all good. Don't go walking up there and expect to get paid.

Q20 – Do you have any plans to tour overseas or is this too expensive for you to do this at this moment in time.

Definitely have plans, but yes at this second it's a little much thats why we can't just pack up and go, would have to make sure what's in line and planned out. Guess that's where a kickstarter or something would come in, more like help us play in your killer country.

Q21 – Finally do you have anything to say to your fans.

We fuck'n love everyone one of you dedicated individuals, yall are the ones that help us grow and spread the good word to the masses, this might be the beginning, but it's definitely nowhere close to the end. We just got this freight train rolling and don't see it stopping anytime soon. You are awesome and a big thank you for all the support.

Thanks for your time. Best of luck with your album. Can't wait for the vinyl to be released.

Check This Great Band from the links below.


Interview with Beneath The Storm

Temples Of Doom cover art

Now on Sludgelord I am interviewing the mysterious One-Man Drone/Doom/Sludge Metal Wrecking Crew – Beneath The Storm

Beneath The Storm has just released their excellent début album – Temples Of Doom. And it's one scary mother-fucking affair which I described as:

“Temples Of Doom is definitely the creepiest album I have heard this year. It's full of top-notch scary moments which is quite rare for a Doom/Sludge Metal album. Drone does play a big part in the album. It ties all the musical elements together. But it's the creepy sound-clips that gives this album a deeply unforgiving and unforgettable edge.

Listen to this at your own peril!!! - Are you ready to confront your worst fears!!!”

Now it's time to enter the disturbing mind of Beneath The Storm

Q1 – Hi dude. How are things with you today. Thanks for doing this. I take it you have some spare time to talk to me. Unless your busy talking to Satan.

Hi Steve, i'm doing fine thanks. First of all, thank you for the great review of Temples and the opportunity to do this interview. It's really an honor to be on Sludgelord.

Q2 – Can you give people a brief history on how you came involved with music.

I've been playing guitar since i was 10, started playing in bands with 14 and have been doing it ever since. I'm 29 now. A couple of years ago i finished an audio engineering school so i could start recording on my own. So besides playing in bands, i started to make different studio projects. Beneath The Storm being the latest.

Q3 – When did you decide to publish your music to the world. That must have been a daunting task for you to do. Possibly fear of rejection or criticism.

It was in early 2013. I've just finished an album for a sludge project and was sending it to different record labels. I knew that even if i would get a record deal, at least 3 months would have past before getting an answer. And even then it would take another 3 months for pressing the cd's and stuff like that. So since i just want to make music and don't really care about anything else, i've decided to make this project. The idea was to just put it on the internet and see what happens.

This way it was possible to put the music out as soon as it was finished, instead of waiting another 6 months or so. It also allows me to put out as much music as i like and gives me total control of every step. It gives me total freedom. If i want to put out 3 albums a year, i can do so (which is the plan). There was no fear of rejection. To tell you the truth, i thought only my friends would hear this album and maybe it would get 50 downloads max. So i'm really surprised about the response.

Q4 – Now your début album – Temples Of Doom. That is seriously one creepy fucked up affair. Was that always the plan to release something creepy as the début album.

Yes. I was trying to recreate the feeling you get when watching creepy old horror movies. And it is going to stay that way. I want to keep it as brutal as possible. no compromise, haha.

Q5 – Was it a hard album to record. It must have been especially with all of the sound-clips spliced with your music.

Absolutely not! I do this because i LOVE to do it. I have to do it, somehow. Nothing is hard if you really love it. It would be hard if i was not allowed to do it, haha. I recorded everything by myself which is, for some reason, easier and quicker than recording with a band. There was no timeline, so i recorded when i felt like it. I'd say searching for those sound clips was the least fun, but still not a drag.

Q6 – Which bands and artists have influenced you as a musician.

It's to many to mention, i listen to a lot of different music… like, i love John Coltrane as much as i love Cannibal Corpse. If you know what i mean. I guess Tool were a major influence... But i guess for this project, bands like Isis, Acid Bath, Rosetta, Eyehategod, Ahab, Electric Wizard… You get the idea.

Q7 – Now you record everything by yourself. Which instruments do you play. And what is your most favourite instrument to use.

I play all instruments in this project. Obviously, the guitar is my favorite instrument to play but it's also fun to do vocals.

Q8 – You have told me in passing before that your involved with other musical projects. Can you tell us about some of them. Though I know you want to keep your identity secret from your main band.

Ok, i play guitar in a death metal band. We're working on our 4th album right now. And also in a post metal-sludge project. We're still working on our debut. There was another solo sludge project but i don't know if i'm going to continue with it.

Q9 – When can we expect to hear music from your top secret other band.

I guess you're talking about the sludge project i was telling you about. Could be never. I'm looking for a label for it and i'm getting kind of sick of it. Maybe i'll release it as Beneath The Storm, my only worry is that it is a lot faster and more aggressive than BTS.

Q10 – Will their be any more future releases from Beneath The Storm or is too early to talk about that yet.

Oh yeah. There will be another release in a couple of months or so. I've got 2 songs finished already.

Q11 – Do you have any additional help in the studio when recording your material or is everything done by yourself.

No, just me. There is going to be (at least) one song on the next album with sound fx by a friend of mine called Neuf Meuf. But apart from that, i'm doing everything alone in the studio. It's easier this way. I know what kind of a sound i want to get out and i know how to get it. By doing it alone i can also record at 4 in the morning if i want (which i usually do).

Q12 – What are your favourite bands around at the moment. Do you listen to modern day rock/metal or do you just listen to the classic era of Stoner/Sludge/Doom Metal.

The last few years have actually been great for Sludge-Doom. I was very impressed with Grimpen Mire's album (A Plague Upon Your Houses). Also Obscure Sphinx from Poland, Serpent Omega, General Lee, Titan, Kehlvin, Murkrat, Rwake, Demonic Death Judge, Whales And Aurora, Time To Burn (a bit older, but their last album is a masterpiece), The Canyon Observer (from Slovenia) and so on. I recently discovered Impure Wilhelmina which is great fucking band!

Q13 – Do you think you will perform LIVE with Beneath The Storm or is it purely a studio only project.

It's a studio only project. I have thought about it and talked about it with possible "future band members", but for now, no. Something drastic would have to happen, like getting a big label contract (which is not going to happen, haha). It's just to much of an effort to rehears all the songs with a band just to play 3 shows a year in front of 10 people… But like i said, anything could happen. If someone's really interested in getting the band out to play some real shows, then sure.

Q14 – What are the most and least rewarding aspects of releasing and recording music as a solo artist. Possibly the expense of it all can be classed as a negative aspect.

By doing everything myself, i don't have to compromise about anything. Basically, i can do what i want… Like i said, i love what i do. I would record even if no one would ever hear it, it's a way of self therapy i guess. The most rewarding (or i should say surprising) aspect was the great response from people all around the world. So i don't mind doing it all by my self, to answer your question.

Q15 - Are you fans of any other one-man metal projects like Deterior, Judd Madden, Cloudkicker and Diamenson X. Are you aware of their music or any other projects like that.

I'm not aware of those bands, but i'm going to check them out. I like Murkrat which is a two-man project (actually a man-girl project). The only one-man (sludge) project that i know of is Fading Waves from Russia.

Q16 – Has BandCamp been a big help of getting your music across.

Yes it has. It's a great site for getting your music heard.

Q17 – What are you views of record companies shutting blogs and websites down due to illegal downloading. Some people have a very different opinion on this.

Well, i guess for bands making a living with music, illegal downloading is a bad thing. But for me it's the best thing ever! I'm making music for the love of making music, not making money. It's the best way of getting heard by people all over the world. It really is! No one is going to pay to listen to a no-name band from Slovenia. By putting it on the internet for free, your not going to make money but people are going to hear you and that's the important thing.

Q18 – What do you think of bands and musicians using sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo to help raise funds to record their next release. Would you yourself ever go down this route.

I've never heard of those sites. Sure, if that helps them, why not. I would never use them though, cause i don't need money to record since i'm recording myself.

Q19 – So what are you currently listening to on your MP3 Player. Any album that is starting to rock your world big time. Any albums your too ashamed to admit to liking and listening to.

Lately a lot of Noothgrush, Grief, Zozobra, Eibon, Palms, Kongh, Noye… I don't have albums i would be ashamed of, just albums you probably wouldn't expect from a doom musician, like: Ella Fitzgerald, Sophie Hunger, Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk…

Q20 – So what are your future plans for the next 12 months or so. Anything exciting we should be looking forward to.

To make at least 3 albums and some T-shirts.

Q21 – Finally do you have anything to say to our readers.

Keep supporting sludge and doom.

Well dude thanks for your time doing this. Hope you continue to release more excellent releases. Best of luck in the future.

Check Beneath The Storm From Links Below


MONOMYTH - S/T - Album Review

Monomyth is a Psychedelic Space Rock/Krautrock/Stoner Rock Band from The Netherlands

The members are:

Bassguitar: Selwyn Slop (Incense, The Polar Exploration Ship, Lucid)
Drums: Sander Evers (35007, Gomer Pyle)
Keyboards: Peter van der Meer (The Incredible Stacks, The Polar Exploration Ship)
Guitars: Thomas van den Reydt (Alkaloid)
Knobs & Computers: Tjerk Stoop

Monomyth is a band who has been generating a lot of buzz and excitement within the Stoner Rock scene. Their S/T debut album is about to be released on excellent record label – Burning World Records.

Monomyth’s live performances and numerous videos on YouTube have seen them labelled as a force to be reckoned with. Well the time is almost upon us for Monomyth to deliver their incredible blend of Psychedelic Stoner Rock. But there is so much more to their music that meets the eye.

Drone, Space Rock and Krautrock all combine for an out of this world ride into the unknown. Monomyth’s debut album runs for 58 mins and it delivers one of the best audio experiences you will likely to hear this year or any other year to be precise. There are riffs to be found here folks but it is all mixed in with heavy layers of psychedelic space rock/krautrock greatness.

This album feels truly alive from the very first seconds of sublime opening track -
Vanderwaalskrachten. The 11 minutes simply crushes everything in its path. It might start off slow and quiet but give this track time and it slowly builds upto to a loud wall of noise blazing heavy atmospherics riffs with brilliant instrumental work from the band playing through out.

A great start to frankly a wonderful debut album that is going to launch these guys on the international stage. You might even hear shades of Pelican at times with the ambient noises creeping in now and again.

2nd track – Vile Vortices – is the shortest track on the album running for a lowly 8:27 minutes. OK it is still an epic track full of awe and wonder that truly transcends time and space. That is the superb Space Rock vibe starting to show up more prominently. But Monomyth never stay in the same place for long. They add a cool slice of ambient style of Krautrock to calm the senses before taking you on another intergalactic journey. The pianos and keyboards are a work of art here. They add a real sense of awe and danger before some fantastic slow-paced guitar riffs, which adds a soul to the album.

3rd track – The Groomlake Engine – is one of the albums standout tracks. Another 10-minute plus epic to blaze through your headphones or stereo speakers. Noises and atmospherics combine to portray another outstanding blast of huge Stoner Rock riffs blended with heavy Space Rock/Krautrock licks.

I do not want to do a track-by-track review as you still have two tracks left totalling for about 30 minutes or so. But Monomyth go into overdrive from here on in. Loch Ness and Huygens will take you to places you did not think were possible in the realm of Instrumental Rock music. But Monomyth have succeeded on every possible level.

Close your eyes and this brilliant band of Space/Stoner Rockers will take you to the edges of space and back again without ever leaving the comfort of your own home.

Huygens is the albums central masterpiece. 17 minutes that will stir up every human emotion possible. It is another epic journey that will take you to the far reaches of space. All made possible by the power of the heavy riffs that Monomyth have at their disposal. Huygens is pure sonic perfection. It highlights what makes Monomyth such a special band indeed.

It is their range of ideas and their willingness to go that little bit further that most instrumental rock bands can only dream about. The range of ideas that Monomyth have packed into this album is an achievement in itself. It is bursting with them. To the point that one listen to this album is never enough. You need multiple listens to experience the world that Monomyth have created.

The album proves that Monomyth are incredible musicians. This is one of the strongest sounding debuts I have heard in a very long time. This album is going to launch Monomyth on to the international scene.

Production is immense. You will not hear a better sounding album all year. Believe me folks when I say that Monomyth are only going to get bigger and better. That is the most exciting thing about this band and the album. It is the suspense of what will they come up with next.

Awesome. This is a classic album in the making. Incredible.

Thanks to the band for sending me a copy to review. Really appreciate it guys.

Monomyth S/T Debut Album will be available to buy from Burning World Records on Sept 16th 2013 on CD, DD and Vinyl

Check The Band from the links below.


Check out the excellent album trailer to show you what is in store for you!!!

Check out this excellent concert and witness the power of this amazing band.

Empty Flowers - Five - Review

FIVE cover art

Empty Flowers is a Post Rock Band from USA

The members are:

Christian McKenna
Randy Larsen
Bernie Romanowski
Andre Galiffi

Empty Flowers may be known to a few of you already. They are a group featuring current and former members of Cable.
featuring current and former members of CABLE

Empty Flowers are less relentless and angrier than Cable. However, they are still a great band to check out in their own right. The band has already made an impression on people when they released their stunning debut album – Six – late last year. Well almost a year later and Empty Flowers are back with another stunning record to their name. Five.

Five is more of an EP than an album as it only runs for about 22 minutes or so. Five may not venture into any new territories but you cannot deny how talented these guys for writing a great post-rock tune.

The eight tracks on offer only run for about 2 to 3 minutes each but they all pack an almighty punch. Jarring guitars mixed with spiky vocals to make Five an excellent record for you all to check out. Songs such as – I Get To Know It’s Name, Five, Time Feeds The Dose and Carfires all have an underlying angry vibe begging to be let out of it’s cage and when the need arises – Empty Flowers – let fly with some great angry post-rock riffs.

If your looking or something heavy and aggressive it might be best for you to look elsewhere as things stay at a natural pace. But if your still intrigued by Empty Flowers blend of aggressive Post Rock then Five will be another great release for your collection.

Empty Flowers are masters of packing their music with raw human emotion to give them a hard-hitting edge. My only complaint is I wish Empty Flowers would of included one epic track or made some of the tracks slightly longer as 22 minutes is never enough for a band with this much talent involved.

All in all Five is an excellent release from Empty Flowers and it definitely builds upon their superb debut album. If you have not checked them out already now here is your chance to.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Five will be available to buy from 06th August 2013 on the following formats and record labels.

Five - Atomic Action! Records (vinyl)
 Five - The Path Less Traveled (cd/digital)

Thanks to Carl at Action PR for sending me a copy to review.

Check The Band From Links Below


Black Boned Angel - The End (Album Review)

Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 19/2/2013
Label: Handmade Birds Records

The End, album tracklisting:
1) Part I 20:36
2) Part II 24:17
3) 16:23
It's only fitting that the final offering from NZ drone duo Black Boned Angel (named after a Godflesh track) should be called 'The End'. If it is indeed to be a swansong of sorts, then providing the potential soundtrack to the end of all things is pretty sweet. Split into 3 gargantuan parts, listening to this record is like driving into a wall repeatedly at speed, having it recorded, and then watched in slow motion playback. It's pretty unsettling.
'Part I' reaches just over the 20 minute mark, and is fairly digestible to begin with. It's an epic build that's flanked by distortion and noise, the likes of which I reckon would make Justin Broadrick very proud. From about the 13 minute mark onwards though it becomes not too dissimilar to that sensation of swallowing a crisp that you haven't broken down enough in your mouth yet. That sharp pain that you get at the back of your throat? Yeah that, but in your ears. Salt and Vinegar destruction in audio form. Just feedback and weeping and wailing and the gnashing of teeth. BRILLIANT.
'Part II' is, within its formative stage, a welcome reprieve. Beautiful ambient sounds rest within your senses, and there is even some kind of Gregorian chants subtly merged into the very faint background. And so it continues for about the first 5 minutes, until everything goes all Stephen O'Malley and Greg Anderson on us. To be fair, it's actually slightly lighter than Sunn O))), but it's still ominous as fuck. The beats have that industrial feel to them, like they were recorded in the 80s, which is nice. And the end of the track is actually quite serene, with a dreamy, almost ethereal state. The vision on display here is truly wide in scope.
'Part III' wastes little time, and is instantly loud and riff laden. The size of the guitar sound on the recording is absolutely HUGE, and a sincere joy to behold for all lovers of the loud. To get the absolute most out of you have to play it at substantial volume, to listen otherwise would be doing it an injustice. This final part, over 16 minutes in length, really sucks you in and holds you close. The operatic vocals that you can barely make out should seem pretty fucking weird or out of place, but they fit the mood perfectly. The fact that they were even considered in the first place should be a fair sign of the level of musical creativity on display here. By the time the white noise conclusion fades out, you're no longer where you were when you started. You've been transported elsewhere, and re-moulded.
To have this submitted as the final work for any band, let alone BBA, would surely satisfy not only any diehard fan, but any creator involved too. I hope that they are happy with 'The End', because it's a work of crushing beauty and heavy splendour.
Finality never sounded so vital. You need this in your life.
Words by : Matt Fitton
As ever, show your support to the band by checking them out at the various links.  You can buy this release here. This record is available now.  Thanks to Catharsis PR for hooking us up.