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IRATA: PopMatters Streams Tower Full-Length In Its Entirety; Record To See Release This Friday Via Small Stone + Tour Dates With Weedeater Confirmed
| Stream / Share IRATA’s Tower At THIS LOCATION |
PopMatters is currently streaming Tower, the anticipated new full-length from Greensboro, North Carolina-based heavy rock unit IRATA. The premiere comes on the eve of the record’s official release via Small Stone. Writes PopMatters of the release, “The album continues to display the quartet’s dizzying waft of scuzz while maintaining musical elements that also appeal to the great washed masses who grew up listening to math rock, pre-grunge indie rock and Black Sabbath,” further elaborating, “‘Weightless’ reminds us of early Soundgarden’s penchant for creating jazzlike ragas that were frequently hypnotic and sometimes hallucinatory. Coupled with a Jane’s Addiction-style vocal chant and for a moment you’re back in your brother’s college apartment, wondering how much Nag Champa could Nag if a Champa could Nag Champa. ‘Innocent Murmur’ is a voyage into progressive rock replete with some of the record’s most interesting lead guitar work, the predictably great ‘Leviathan’ (How could it not rip with that title?) and the final, epic ‘Constellations’ are three stops on an exhilarating journey that keeps the listener guessing and bobbing their heads in constant approval.”
Read more and hear Tower only at PopMatters at THIS LOCATION.
Tower will be released on CD, digital, and limited-edition vinyl formats May 24th. For preorders, go to THIS LOCATION.
IRATA will join Weedeater for a short run of shows later this month. The band are also confirmed to appear on the Golden Haze Fest in Golden, Colorado as well as Descendants Of Crom III Fest in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with addition live performances to be announced in the weeks to come. See all confirmed dates below.
IRATA w/ Weedeater:
5/29/2019 The Hideaway – Johnson City, TN
5/30/2019 Westside Bowl – Youngstown, OH
6/01/2019 Turnbuckles And Brews – Dayton, OH
6/02/2019 Rock and Roll Hotel – Washington, DC
6/03/2019 The Southern – Charlottesville, VA
8/30/2019 Golden Haze Fest @ Buffalo Rose – Golden, CO *
9/22/2019 Descendants Of Crom III Fest @ Cattivo – Pittsburgh, PA
* * IRATA only Since its 2007 genesis at the hands of founding members drummer Jason Ward and bassist Jon Case, IRATA has mutated restlessly, moving from its initial morphine-infused heavy fusion through math-y metal and finally to the soaring, technical heavy rock of its current approach. Over those dozen years, IRATA has made its presence known in metal and hard rock circles throughout the Southeast and beyond. Thanks to its growth from a trio with guitarist Cheryl Manner to a four-piece with the addition of guitarist Owen Burd, IRATA is evolving yet again. With Burd’s talents on guitar, vocals, and trumpet added to what had already felt like a complete equation, IRATA is pushing itself to new vocal and instrumental heights. Accordingly, its upcoming LP Tower applies impressive musicianship and complex textures to increasingly approachable tunes that teeter between hard rock and prog-metal. It’s like the sports car version of Don Caballero. Fans of Jane’s Addiction, Mastodon, Kylesa, Helms Alee, Sandrider, All Them Witches, and King Buffalo pay heed. “This Greensboro, North Carolina crew certainly knows how to ride a fuzztone riff to and beyond its obvious conclusions to build a mood. The band has experimented with a number of styles before settling on its present one, which is something like Mastodon-meets-early Fu Manchu. It’s heavy, driving and full of interesting math rock flourishes and sounds really good super loud.” — Vancouver Sun “From the opening riffs, so reminiscent of Torche and their saccharine approach to fuzz, to the big choruses, this track oozes cool and groove.” – Heavy Blog Is Heavy “There’s nothing quite as exciting as opening up an email from an unfamiliar band, falling in love with the artwork and finding that the music is not only every bit as good as you had hoped, but that it is, in fact, even better. Tower is, quite simply, an astounding album, drawing on a wide range of prog and metal influences to deliver an intelligent, exciting album that repays repeat listens thanks to the deftly textured arrangements. By turns crushingly heavy and ethereal, Tower is a remarkable album and comes very highly recommended indeed.” — Sonic Abuse “…a thrilling, complex and brilliant album from start to finish.” — Outlaws Of The Sun For
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ABRAHMA To Release Third Album In Time For The Last Rays Of Light May 24th Via Small Stone Records; New Track Streaming + Preorders Available
French progressive heavy rock outfit ABRAHMA will release their third full-length, In Time For The Last Rays Of Light, this May via Small Stone.
Following three tumultuous years of personal challenges and lineup changes, In Time For The Last Rays Of Light, is a chronicle of the ravages of coping with loss and mental illness, brought to bear with heavy and progressive songwriting, melodic catharsis, and an impact that goes beyond the material itself. Produced and mixed at Orgone Studios by Jaime Gomez Arellano (Paradise Lost, Ghost) In Time For The Last Rays Of Light follows 2015’s Reflections In The Bowels Of A Bird, and whether it’s the stark chug and lumbering weight of “Eclipse Of The Sane Pt. 1: Isolation Ghosts” or the furious blasting in “Lucidly Adrift,” its songs produce a depth of atmosphere that speaks to the soul that birthed them.
A split with the prior lineup of the band brought the Rouen, France-based founding vocalist/guitarist Sébastien Bismuth into contact with local outfit Splendor Solis, whose members would soon be folded into the new incarnation of ABRAHMA. After many false starts, the band hit the studio in July 2018 and set to work on what is unmistakably their greatest accomplishment to-date: an album that copes with the depression that inspired it and soars hopefully above while reminding that the darkness beneath is ever-present.
“People do not take mental illness seriously,” says Bismuth. “People suffering from depression generally feel rejected, and it is not only a feeling. People who’ve never gone through it generally do not understand how hard it can be to live every day with this weight on your shoulders, all those questions going through your head.”
Spanning genres and decades of influence, from the Bowie-ism of “…Last Epistle” to the gothic unfolding of closer “There Bears The Fruit Of Deceit,” In Time For The Last Rays Of Light speaks with raw honesty and lush craft to its challenges and realizations.
In keeping with the album’s theme, a portion of the merch proceeds from ABRAHMA’s next tours will go to help those suffering from mental illness. “I decided to use this album as a medication against this depression and maybe help other people in this situation,” Bismuth recounts. “Each song explains a different side of it: loss of confidence, other’s critical looks, the impression of not having a place in this world.”
With front and back covers by famed French artist Gustave Doré (1832-1883) and a greater expanse of sound than ABRAHMA has ever had before, In Time For The Last Rays Of Light confronts its demons and offers a reminder that light exists in the first place. [words by JJ Koczan/The Obelisk)
ABRAHMA’s In Time For The Last Rays Of Light will be released May 24th on CD and digital formats worldwide via Small Stone Records and in France on Deadlight Entertainment. For preorders go to THIS LOCATION where opening track “Lost.Forever.” can be streamed. View the album teaser at THIS LOCATION.
In Time For The Last Rays Of Light Track Listing:
2. Lucidly Adrift
3. Eclipse Of The Sane Pt.1: Isolation Ghosts
4. Dusk Contemplation…
5. …Last Epistle
6. Wander In Sedation
7. Eclipse Of The Sane Pt. 2: Fiddler Of The Bottle
8. There Bears The Fruit Of Deceit
Sébastien Bismuth – vocals/guitar/effects
Florian Leguillon – guitar/backing vocals
Benoît Carel – guitar/synth/backing vocals
Romain Hauduc – bass/backing vocals
Baptiste Keriel – drums/backing vocals
SUNDRIFTER: Boston-Based Desert Rock Trio To Release Visitations Full-Length Via Small Stone This October; New Track Streaming + Preorders Available
“Sometimes you just got to let it burn.” — SUNDRIFTER
Boston-based desert rock trio SUNDRIFTER will release their Visitations full-length via Small Stone on October 19th. Engineered, mixed, and mastered by Dan Schwartz at Futura Productions in Roslindale, Massachusetts, the space the nine-track record captures isn’t of the Hawkwind, pulsating rhythm variety, but instead one that oozes with planetary motion; one that rolls along a chaotic cosmic path, not at all afraid to smash one asteroid off another before crashing to the surface, which, as we all know, is how life began in the first place.
In advance of its release, the band is pleased to premiere opening track “Sons Of Belial,” noting, “Our musical themes are inspired by conspiracy or ancient astronaut theories. This song, ‘Sons Of Belial, is about the fall of the lost continent of Atlantis. There was a war between The Children Of The Law Of One and the Sons Of Belial. The Children Of The Law Of One were pure and worshipped one god while the Sons Of Belial worshipped themselves and valued material objects. The power struggle brought forth a fiery war to Atlantis that eventually sunk the continent. Sometimes you just got to let it burn.”
Stream “Sons Of Belial” at THIS LOCATION.
SUNDRIFTER’s Visitations will be available on CD, LP and digital formats. Preorder yours today at THIS LOCATION.
Visitations Track Listing:
1. Sons Of Belial
2. Death March
5. Till You Come Down
7. Sky Peoples Son
8. Fire In The Sky
9. I Want To Leave
Born out of a Boston rock underground teeming with history and riffs alike, SUNDRIFTER captures the essence of tonal weight with their Small Stone debut, Visitations. Their second album overall behind 2016’s Not Coming Back, Visitations harnesses spaciousness and heft alike and soars with melodic vibrancy in a way most acts simply can’t balance. Shades of Soundgarden and Queens Of The Stone Age appear, but they’re just shades, and SUNDRIFTER’s vision of heavy is their own, someplace between grunge, doom, psychedelia, and classic heavy rock.
Craig Peura – guitars, vocals
Patrick Queenan – drums, percussion
Paul Gaughran – bass
View / Share LA CHINGA’s “Wings Of Fire” At THIS LOCATION
As Beyond The Sky – the forthcoming full-length from LA CHINGA – draws ever closer to release, The Sludgelord is pleased to unveil the band’s visual companion to “Wings Of Fire.”
Notes director R. D. Cane, “LA CHINGA….When they asked me to shoot a video, I had to really think about how to pay all due respect to their guitar heavy forefathers and still visually knock the socks off of a whole new generation of young rockers. We knew we wanted to make it colorful and exciting but simple enough to not get in the way. ‘Wings Of Fire’ just rocks. LA CHINGA knows their thing and they do it so well. This was a blast to shoot and hanging out was very cool, I really can’t wait to do more…”
View “Wings Of Fire,” courtesy of The Sludgelord, at THIS LOCATION.
If you missed it, check out the band’s previously-released “Killer Wizard” video HERE.
A hard rock power trio with psychedelic powers based in Vancouver, British Columbia, LA CHINGA draws from Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, MC5, and their own bad habits to conjure the forty-five minutes of sublimely confident freedom rock that comprises Beyond The Sky. Sometimes meaty and beaty (“Mama Boogie,” “Death Rider”), sometimes glam-handed (“Killer Wizard”), and occasionally even dirtbag pretty (“Keep On Rollin’), when it all melts into a puddle of phased goo in the final bars of “Warlords,” the listener has been rolled, boogied, and otherwise supernaturally conveyed well beyond the sky.
The follow-up to LA CHINGA’s 2016 critically-lauded Freewheelin’ full-length was captured at Vancouver’s fabled Warehouse studio with no-less-fabled producer Jamey Koch (DOA, Copyright, Tragically Hip).
Beyond The Sky will see release September 7th, CD, LP, and digital formats via Small Stone. For preorders go to THIS LOCATION where “Nothin’ That I Can’t Do” can be streamed.
LA CHINGA was forged in 2012, although in reality it was conceived about a year earlier when bassist/vocalist Carl Spackler was surfing in Southern California and his Chicano beach buddies kept hailing each other with the mysterious phrase: “La chingaaaaa!” It was then that Spackler’s dream of a hard rock power trio built on erogenous funkadelic rhythms and a devotion to life’s more sublime pleasures – chief among them: tequila – was now embodied inside a beautifully obscene two-word incantation.
Drummer/vocalist Jay Solyom and guitarist/vocalist Ben Yardley – also a noted professor of Theremin – were conscripted shortly after, both veterans of Vancouver’s notoriously dead-end music scene, both beautifully obscene in their own right. LA CHINGA’s self-titled debut record was rushed out of a makeshift studio in 2013 on nothing but fumes and the liberating force of not giving a shit, landing like a hairball crossed with a stink bomb inside a world of yoga pant commerce, condo developments, and Macbook “musicians.” This was a revolutionary act, or maybe a devolutionary one, at least.
Meanwhile, Spackler was busying pouring all off his demented ’70s obsessions into wild three-minute homemade music videos, finding the visual language of fuzz itself inside shitty horror films as he furnished the great infernal drive-in of his mind. Somehow, miraculously, this charming brew conspired to make LA CHINGA the hottest bunch of stoned ape groovers to hot wheel out of the Pacific Northwest since forever. Freewheelin’ followed in 2016 on Small Stone, and so did unhinged tours of Europe, more year-end accolades, and festival slots (420 Fest, Sasquatch). In late 2017, LA CHINGA entered Vancouver’s Warehouse studio with producer Jamey Koch. The result is Beyond The Sky, available this fall via Small Stone. This is how it feels to get chinga’d, amigos. Surf’s up.
BLACK ELEPHANT: The Obelisk Premieres “Walking Dead” Video From Psychedelic Blues/Heavy Rawk Troupe; Cosmic Blues To Be Released This July
…the four-piece have conjured ghosts of ’70s heavy fuzz and ’90s riff mongering offering up a sonic brew that’s both potent and thoroughly modern….
View / Share BLACK ELEPHANT’s “Walking Dead” At http://youtu.be/Tot5JORQiMo
Cosmic Blues, the impending new full-length from Italian psychedelic fuzz/heavy rock troupe BLACK ELEPHANT, will see release next month via Small Stone. In advance of its release, The Obelisk is pleased to unveil the band’s official video for “Walking Dead” alongside an extended review of the record.
Issues the esteemed blog, “While BLACK ELEPHANT don’t necessarily go anywhere that heavy and/or psychedelic rock hasn’t gone before, they do an excellent job of finding their niche in the genre and do even better in tipping the balance in their aesthetic to one side or the other. Some will dig it for its variety. Some will dig it for its familiarity. And some will just dig it because riffs… The varied appeal speaks to BLACK ELEPHANT knowing their audience… and knowing how to communicate their ideas through sound.”
Read more and view “Walking Dead” at THIS LOCATION.
BLACK ELEPHANT’s Cosmic Blues was recorded and mixed by Giulio Farinelli, mastered by Maurizio Giannotti, and cames wrapped in the cover design of Robin Gnista. The record will see release on July 20th on CD, digitally, and limited edition purple vinyl.
For preorders, go to the Small Stone Bandcamp page at THIS LOCATION where album opener “Cosmic Soul” can be streamed.
One would be hard-pressed to come up with a better descriptor for BLACK ELEPHANT’s Cosmic Blues full-length than the title of the album itself. Based in Savona, Italy, the four-piece have conjured ghosts of ’70s heavy fuzz and ’90s riff mongering offering up a sonic brew that’s both potent and thoroughly modern. Cosmic Blues follows 2014’s Bifolchi Inside and 2012’s Spaghetti Cowboys (get it?) and marks their debut on Small Stone Records. Comprised of lead vocalist/lead guitarist Alessio Caravelli, rhythm guitarist Massimiliano Giacosa, bassist Marcello Destefanis, and drummer Simone Brunzu, BLACK ELEPHANT makes their mark in their home country’s booming heavy rock underground with memorable songs and a sound that’s just as comfortable getting funky on “Chase Me” as it is re-imagining Soundgarden as a riff rock outfit à la peak-era Dozer, rolling out huge grooves en route to “Cosmic Blues For Solitary Moose,” loaded with fuzz and scorching solos.
Given a brisk, live sound in its production – fitting for a group with hundreds of shows under their collective belt – Cosmic Blues comes across natural and at times maintains the intensity of BLACK ELEPHANT’s earlier work (closer “Inno” walks by and waves), while simultaneously exploring more spacious realms in the not-a-cover “Helter Skelter” and the takeoff jammer “Baby Eroina,” which eases into and out of its nodding rhythm with a smoothness worthy of a group’s third album and a fluidity that typifies the record’s entire thirty-four-minute run. Leaving their own tracks in the footsteps of bands like Small Stone’s own Isaak, BLACK ELEPHANT hits a new level of craft with Cosmic Blues, and if the righteous drive of opener “Cosmic Soul,” the flowing progression of the LP that ensues, and the name they’ve given the whole affair are anything to go by, they know it for sure. All the better
BLACK ELEPHANT is:
Alessio Caravelli – lead vocals, lead guitar
Massimiliano Giacosa – rhythm guitar
Marcello Destefanis – bass guitar
Simone Brunzu – drums