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Various Artists

Brown Acid: The Thirteenth Trip

    The forthcoming latest edition of the popular compilation series featuring long-lost vintage 60s-70s proto-metal and stoner rock singles, Brown Acid: The Thirteenth Trip will be available on Halloween 2021. Check out the first single "Run Run", released in 1970 by Montreal hard rockers Max is available to hear & share via Metal Injection HERE. (And, direct YouTube and Bandcamp)

    The Brown Acid series is curated by L.A. label RidingEasy Records and retailer/label Permanent Records. 

    About The Thirteenth Trip:
    Max, from Montreal, QC — originally known as Dawn, before Tony Orlando & Dawn forced a name change — kick things off with “Run Run” from their lone 1970 single. It’s a hard-hitting rocker with scale climbing crunching guitars and powerful Bonham-esque drumming. Sadly, the band didn’t last long due to poor management and various other factors, so this is the only surviving document according to guitarist Gerry Markman. And what a document it is, paired with the A-side “The Flying Dutchman.”

    You might remember Ralph Williams and the Wright Brothers from their track “Never Again” on Brown Acid: The Tenth Trip. Here they make their return to the series with the A-side of their 1972 Hour Glass Records 45, which sounds like Blue Cheer mangling Roy Orbison’s “Pretty Woman” (that’s right, several years before Van Halen actually did so.) Alas, Ralph and these Wright Brothers soon disappeared from terrestrial airspace.

    “Feelin’ Dead” is extremely heavy blues from this also extremely rare 1974 single by Detroit, MI’s Master Danse, which was only released as a promo 45. Think Led Zeppelin’s “Since I’ve Been Loving You” and you’re on the right track. A little dose of Hendrix acid blues and a heartfelt groove, and you’ll wonder why this single never even made it to official release. The unavoidable tell in the lyric, “help me get this damn thing out of my arm” hints at the post-Vietnam heroin epidemic as a potential clue why we never heard more from Master Danse.

    Folks, Gary Del Vecchio is “Buzzin’” hard on this one, and from what sounds like an in-studio party of yelps and chatter at the start of the song, it seems that the whole band was in on the festivities. The funky blues riff, reminiscent of Led Zeppelin’s “Heartbreaker” and rollicking rhythmic changes certainly keep the buzz a rollin’.The recording is technically credited as Gary Del Vecchio with Max, though not the same band as the one that kicks off this Trip.

    John Kitko’s 1973 heavy psychedelic rager “Indecision” is the only recording known to exist by the mysterious artist. The Twin Record Productions release features a different artist, Tom Poff on the B-side, which is truly a shame, considering the smoldering ashes Kitko leaves of the turntable by song’s end. It starts out more like a late 60s Acid Rock jam before leaping into a blazing double-time gallop, whipped into a frenzy by wailing, neck-pickup guitar squeals and Kitko’s barely audible howls.

    Tampa, FL’s Bacchus made their Brown Acid debut way back on the very first Trip with “Carry My Load.” This 1972 B-side, “Hope” is a huge sounding swinging rocker replete with roadhouse piano bolstering the chunky riffs and confident vocals. After relocating to Southern California a few years later, the band morphed into Fortress, an 80s melodic metal act whose Hands In The Till album of Pomp Rock on Atlantic Records still draws chatter today.

    Orchid’s “Go Big Red” is perhaps the most garage-y sounding offering here, with loose rhythms and straightforward stop-and-start riffing. Nonetheless, the stomping energy and fried-amp guitar tone make this one a charming skull thwack. The band’s 1973 single on American records, backed with a cover of Johnny Russell and Voni Morrison’s “Act Naturally” (popularized by Buck Owens and the Buckaroos) is their only release, so the world never did see this Orchid fully blossom.

    By the title alone of Dry Ice’s “Don’t Munkey with the Funky Skunky” you know you’re in for a good time. The 1974 barnstormer seems aimed to the novelty tunes crowd, with its kooky lyrics and silly-voiced spoken catchphrase break, “peeyew, you’ll be sorry if you do.” But, the Ohio band’s maniacal drumming, crunching guitars and, of course, drug euphemistic lyrics make it a shoo-in for the Brown Acid series of erudite rock’n’roll.

    Good Humore’s swaggering 1976 rocker “Detroit” is a slick and smooth paen to the Motor City. It most likely doesn’t predate “Detroit Rock City” by Kiss, also released in 1976, and it has more rock’n’roll swing, but it could fit comfortably alongside the era’s arena anthems. Not much else is known about the one-off release on P.V. Records, but songwriter Mike Moats is noted to also have been a recording engineer in later years and this well produced track sounds like a labor of love. 

    Deathchant

    Waste

      Heavy music’s evolution has always been a murky swamp of sub-genres. So, combining Thin Lizzy’s glistening twin guitar harmonies with Melvins- grade sludge and a hearty dose of proto-metal psych probably shouldn’t sound so revolutionary as it does in the hands of L.A. quartet Deathchant. But theirs is a special, transcendent sound.

      Waste, the band’s sophomore album and first for RidingEasy Records, is anything but. The 33-minute, 7-song blast flows seamlessly from song to song, aided by droning segues, while simultaneously slithering between genres and moods. Rumbling noise, chiming guitar melodies, bluesy boogie, NWOBHM thrash, COC grunge and punk fury all rear their head at times, sometimes all at once.

      Though you wouldn’t be able to tell by the concise structures and well- crafted songs, a lot of Deathchant’s music is improvised, both in the studio and live. That’s not to suggest their songs are jammy — they’re very tightly organized compositions. But the four musicians have that special musical telepathy that allows them to keep the song structures open-ended.
      “Improv is a huge things for us and always has been,” singer/guitarist T.J. Lemieux says. “The musical freedom to look at the other dudes in the band and be able to take things wherever we want to go is magical. I like the feel of flying off the hinges.”

      Likewise, the band itself is similarly amorphous in its membership. “We run the band with an open door. No lineup is definitive,” Lemieux explains. On Waste, the lineup is: Lemieux, George Camacho on bass, Colin Fahrner on drums, and John Belino on second guitar.

      Waste was recorded live in a rented cabin in the mountains of Big Bear, CA. “We packed a big-ass van and set up in the living room and kitchen,” Lemieux says. “Tracked it live, with overdubs after.” The whole album was recorded over two separate weekends, engineered by Steve Schroeder, who also recorded the band’s 2019 self-titled debut album.

      “I’d say it has sort of a DIY LA punk aesthetic,” he adds. “Very ironically going hand in hand with a classic metal vibe: Thin Lizzy, Judas Priest, classic Deep Purple, Uriah Heep and other melodic heavy rock bands.”

      TRACK LISTING

      01. Rails
      02. Black Dirt
      03. Holy Roller
      04. Gallows
      05. Waste
      06. Plague
      07. Maker

      Various Artists

      Brown Acid: Ten Heavy Hits Vol. 1 (RSD21 EDITION)

        THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2021 EXCLUSIVE AND WILL BE AVAILABLE INSTORE ON SATURDAY JULY 17TH ON A FIRST COME FIRST SERVED BASIS, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

        IF THERE ARE ANY REMAINING COPIES THEY WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE ONLINE AT 6PM ON THE SAME DAY (SATURDAY JULY 17TH).


        ONE TRACK FROM EACH OF THE FIRST TEN VOLUMES OF BROWN ACID. LIMITED EDITION RSD ONLY PRESSIONG

        Alastor

        Onwards And Downwards

          Excelsior! It’s the hail of yore that one should go ever onward and upward. And so, fittingly Onwards and Downwards is the occultist Swedish band Alastor’s clever call to arms... and also a reflection of our collective dark state of mind these days.

          “If our last album Slave to the Grave were about death, this record is more about madness,” says guitarist Hampus Sandell. “You can look at the whole record as one person’s gradual slip into insanity. An ongoing nightmare without end. It also sums up the state of the world around us as this year has clearly shown.”

          Alastor is heavy doom rock for the wicked and depraved. Drenched in heavy, distorted darkness and steeped in occult horror that will make your skin crawl and ears cry sweet tears of blood, the band is revitalized in 2021 with meticulously crafted songs and new drummer Jim Nordström bringing a hard-hitting and precise energy.

          “It’s a more focused record but at the same time it’s more personal and naked. More raw emotion and pain,” Hampus says. The band recorded the album with the help of Joona Hassinen of Studio Underjord, who has helped with mixing since their ”Blood on Satan’s Claw” EP in 2017. Christoffer Karlsson of The Dahmers also assisted with overdubs and encouraged the band to demo the material early on, aiding in the album’s more deliberate and tighter feel.

          From the first note of opener “The Killer In My Skull” the guitars are far thicker and out front than ever, and Nordström pummels the snare and kick like a young Dave Grohl. Bassist/vocalist Robin Arnryd’s chorus-drenched voice soars above it all like a one-man choir, at times harmonizing beautifully with shimmering Hammond organ notes. Nary a moment is wasted on the droning navel-gazing of lesser bands. Particularly, the driving anthem “Death Cult” which sounds like it would fit comfortably on QOTSA’s Songs For The Deaf, though there’s considerably more heft here. The title track pays its due to the Devil’s tritone in a marvelously woven framework of intertwining melodies befitting the album’s theme of descent into madness.

          The quartet released its epic 3-song debut album Black Magic in early 2017 via Twin Earth Records, followed by the 2-track “Blood On Satan’s Claw” EP on Halloween the same year. Joining forces with RidingEasy Records in 2018, Alastor summoned the 7-track hateful gospel Slave To The Grave, which was packed with dynamic twists and turns, and funereal girth. It was met with considerable praise, setting the stage for the band’s greatest step onward (and upward... or downward, depending on your preferences.)

          TRACK LISTING

          01. The Killer In My Skull
          02. Dead Things In Jars
          03. Death Cult
          04. Nightmare Trip
          05. Pipsvängen
          06. Onwards And Downwards

          Warish

          Next To Pay

            With a name like Warish, the San Diego noisy punk-metal trio assured listeners they were in for a maniacal bludgeoning from the get-go. But the band has never been as dark and bitingly vicious as the wholly ominous Next To Pay. The band’s mix of early AmRep skronk, dark horror rock and budget doom antipathy is taken to a whole new level on this 13-song invective.

            “‘Next To Pay’ is about a sense of imminent doom, everyone is going to die,” vocalist/guitarist Riley Hawk says. “It’s not the happiest record, I guess.” To say the least. On the title track opener, Hawk screams through shredded vocal chords with the tuneful rage of Kill ‘Em All era James Hetfield and the seething desperation of Kurt Cobain.

            “This album is more of an evolution, it’s a little more punk-heavy,” Hawk says of the group quickly founded in 2018. “We figured out what our sound was.” And with that evolution comes a change in the lineup. Original drummer Nick (Broose) McDonnell plays on about half of the songs, while new drummer Justin de la Vega brings an even tighter urgency to the remaining, more recent tracks. Bassist Alex Bassaj joined after the debut album was recorded and here showcases muscular and melodic low end previously missing. Riley Hawk is also the pro-skater son of Tony Hawk.

            Inspired by early-Nirvana, The Misfits, The Spits and Master of Reality-era Black Sabbath, Next To Pay keeps things heavy and pummeling at all times. The guitars are heavy and powerful, though decidedly not straightforward cookie cutter punk; more like Greg Ginn’s and Buzz Osbourne’s wiry contortions, and occasionally drenched in chorus effects. The rhythms bash right through it all with aggressive force ensuring that nothing gets overly complicated. Warish’s cover of 80s Dischord Records punks Gray Matter turns the emotive flail of “Burn No Bridges” into a Motorhead style basher.

            TRACK LISTING

            1. Next To Pay
            2. Another No One
            3. S.H.M. (Second Hand Misery)
            4. Burn No Bridges
            5. Say To Please
            6. Seeing Red 7. Destroyer
            8. Woven 9. Scars
            10. Ordinary
            11. Superstar
            12. Make The Escape
            13. Fear And Pride

            Spelljammer

            Abyssal Trip

              Abyssal Trip (note: carefully re-read that album title) takes its moniker from the perpetually dark, cold, oxygen-free zone at the bottom of the ocean. The 6-song, 44-minute album fittingly embodies that bleak realm with rumbling, oozing guitars intercut with dramatic melodic interludes. The songs take their time to unfurl, making them even more hypnotic. Likewise, the lyrics take a poetic approach to establishing the sonic scenery.

              “The lyrical themes we address, like the ultimate doom of man, and the search and longing for new and better worlds, are still there,” Olsson says. “The concept of something undiscovered out there in vast emptiness is pretty much always present.”

              The recording process for Abyssal Trip differs from previous releases in that the band — guitarist Robert Sörling, drummer Jonatan Rimsbo and Olsson — opted to capture the performances while holed up in the mental bathysphere of a house in the countryside near Stockholm. “The songs benefitted from the relaxed environment of being away from everything,” Olsson explains. Indeed, the album sounds confident and meticulously arranged, afforded by the band’s isolation. Sörling mixed the album and it was mastered by Monolord drummer Esben Willems at Berserk Audio.

              Album opener “Bellwether” begins dramatically with a very slow, nearly minute-long fade in of rumbling distortion setting the stage for heavily distorted bass and guitar plucking out the lugubrious riff for another minute and a half before the drums begin, and likewise equally as long before vocals gurgle to the surface. “Lake” abruptly shifts gears, opening with an unusually fast gallop before rupturing into thundering doom that soon drops into a clean-tone Middle Eastern melodic breakdown. The title track serves as the album centerpiece, opening with ominous film dialogue about blood sacrifice that launches into pummeling, detuned guitars rumbling over gut-punching drums and howling vocals hearkening to the proto-sludge of Pink Floyd’s “The Nile Song.” The dynamic relents briefly for a slow building clean guitar melody before all instruments lock into a jerking riff topped off by a trilling Iommi style lead. Throughout, Abyssal Trip is, just like its title suggests, an epic tour through desolate zones which yields much to discover. 

              Here Lies Man

              Ritual Divination

                Four albums in, the convenient and generalized catchphrase for Here Lies Man’s erudite sound — if Black Sabbath played Afrobeat — might seem a little played out. But Ritual Divination is perhaps the best rendering of the idea so far. Particularly on the Sabbath side of the equation: The guitars are heavier and more blues based than before, but the ancient rhythmic formula of the clave remains a constant.

                “Musically it’s an opening up more to traditional rock elements,” says vocalist/guitarist/ cofounder Marcos Garcia, who also plays guitar in Antibalas. “It’s always been our intention to explore. And, as we travelled deeper into this musical landscape, new features revealed themselves.”

                The L.A. based band comprised of Antibalas members have toured relentlessly following their breakout 2017 self-titled debut. Their second album, You Will Know Nothing and an EP, Animal Noises, both followed in 2018. Third album No Ground To Walk Upon emerged in August 2019. All of them were crafted by Garcia and cofounder/drummer Geoff Mann (former Antibalas drummer and son of jazz musician Herbie Mann) in their L.A. studio between tours. Ritual Divination is their first album recorded as the full 4-piece band, including bassist JP Maramba and keyboardist Doug Organ.

                Ritual Divination continues with an ongoing concept of HLM playing the soundtrack to an imaginary movie, with each song being a scene. “It’s an inward psychedelic journey, the album is the trip,” Garcia says. “The intention and purpose of the music is to create a sonic ritual to lift the veil of inner space and divine the true nature of reality.”

                Likewise, musically and sonically, the album is self-reflexive. “On this album the feel changes within a song,” Garcia says. “Whereas before each song was meant to induce a trancelike state, now more of the songs have their own arc built in.” Similarly, the guitar sounds themselves herein eschew the fuzz pedals of previous recordings, going for the directness of pure amp overdrive and distortion using an interconnected rig of 4 amplifiers. And, here, the well-versed live band is able to record as a unit, giving it much more of a live and dynamic feel.

                Rough Trade named the band’s self-titled debut in their prestigious Top 10 Albums of 2017. BBC 6 & Classic Rock Magazine deemed it among the year’s best, as well as countless other press outlets singing its praises. Each subsequent album furthered the band’s reputation for genre-smashing rhythmic experimentation, topping many year-end lists as well as earning features from countless metal and indie rock outlets, plus cover stories in weekly papers.

                “We’re very conscious of how the rhythms service the riffs,” Garcia explains. “Tony Iommi’s (Black Sabbath) innovation was to make the riff the organizing principle of a song. We are taking that same approach but employing a different organizing principle: For Iommi it was the blues, for us it comes directly from Africa.”

                STAFF COMMENTS

                Barry says: Here Lies Man amp up the groove on their latest outing 'Ritual Divination', taking them from a more percussion-based sound into the stoner drawl and half-speed Sabbathy grind that suits them so well. Psychedelic and heavy without being wandering, a brilliant step forwards for the band.

                TRACK LISTING

                Side A
                1. In These Dreams
                2. I Told You (You Must Die)
                3. Underland
                4. What You See
                5. Night Comes
                Side B
                1. Come Inside
                2. Collector Of Vanities
                3. Disappointed
                4. The Fates Have Won
                5. Out Goes The Night

                7" Bonus Tracks:
                Side A - Run Away Children
                Side B - I Wander

                CD Tracklisting:
                1. In These Dreams
                2. I Told You (You Shall Die)
                3. Underland
                4. What You See
                5. Can't Kill It
                6. Run Away Children
                7. I Wander
                8. Night Comes
                9. Come Inside
                10. Collector Of Vanities
                11. Disappointed
                12. You Would Not See From Heaven
                13. The Fates Have Won
                14. Out Goes The Night
                15. Cutting Through The Tether

                Various Artists

                Brown Acid: The Eleventh Trip

                  We’re now in the double digits of brilliant long-lost, rare, and unreleased hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal tracks from the 60s-70s and clearly this has become a bonafide archaeological movement as each new edition leads us to more exciting new discoveries. Like we’ve done throughout this series, all of these tracks were painstakingly licensed legitimately and the artists were paid. Make yourself comfortable and prepare for yet another deep, deep dive into the treasure trove of dank, subterranean, wild-eyed and hairy rock ’n’ roll.

                  TRACK LISTING

                  Side A
                  1. Adam Wind - Something Else (1969)
                  2. Grump - I'll Give... (1969)
                  3. Bagshot Row - Turtle Wax Blues (1973)
                  4. Larry Lynn - Diamond Lady (1970)
                  5. Renaissance Fair - In Wyrd (1968)
                  Side B
                  1. Zendik - Mom's Apple Pie Boy (1970)
                  2. Daybreak - Just Can't Stay (1977)
                  3. West Minist'r - I Want You (1975)
                  4. Debb Johnson - Dancing In The Ruin (1969)
                  5. Crazy Jerry - Every Girl Gets One (1973)

                  R.I.P.

                  Dead End

                    When R.I.P. came crawling out of the sewers of Portland four years ago, their grimy, sleazy Street Doom was already a fully formed monstrosity that quickly infected the minds of everyone it encountered. At the time, none of us expected its depravity to take such fierce hold, and yet, here were are, sheltering in place and/or stealthily creeping through a nightmare dystopia that the 80s sci-fi/horror movies foretold. Dead End is, ironically, a recharge of the band’s sound, bearing influences ranging from John Carpenter films, post-apocalyptic grunge, pro-wrestling attitude and salty lo-fi hip-hop aesthetics to the band’s ferocious heavy metal. During the three years since the 2017 release of their sophomore album Street Reaper, R.I.P. has been busy tightening their sound and their line up while loosening their grip on sanity — touring the west coast with bands like Electric Wizard and Red Fang, and taking Street Doom overseas for the first time for a month long headlining tour of Europe. These years on the road and the addition of a more aggressive rhythm section have allowed the band to fully break free from their influences and deliver on the promise hinted at on their first two releases. For Dead End, R.I.P. worked with legendary producer Billy Anderson, interring onto wax their heaviest and most ambitious album yet. Continuing to move further away from their classic doom influences like Pentagram and Saint Vitus, the band offers a rare blast of originality in a scene rife with formulaic bands. Dead End is a fast and anxious ride where the very idea of doom is put to the test under duress of manic lyrics about death, insanity, and leather, and hook-laden guitar tracks that draw as equally from Nirvana as Black Sabbath.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    01. Streets Of Death
                    02. Judgement Night
                    03. Dead End
                    04. Nightmare
                    05. One Foot In The Grave
                    06. Death Is Coming
                    07. Moment Of Silence
                    08. Buried Alive
                    09. Out Of Time
                    10. Dead Of The Night

                    The Death Wheelers

                    Divine Filth

                      From beyond the gutter, The Death Wheelers bring you their second album, the soundtrack to the fictional bikesploitation flick that never was: Divine Filth. Drawing inspiration from instrumental rock, proto- metal, punk and funk, the band embalms the listener in their sonic world of decay, groove and debauchery. Surfing the line between Motörhead, The Cramps and Dick Dale, the Canadian quartet uncompromisingly blends rawness and power in their riff fueled compositions. Recorded entirely in 48 hours in a live setting just like in the good old days, this second opus is a testament to what the band stands for: a no BS attitude spiked with a heavy layer of crass. Just like their previous offering, the album is devised to serve as a soundtrack loosely based on a plot synopsis of a B-movie:

                      It’s 1982. Spurcity is run-down. The crime rate is up and so is drug use. A new kind of kick has hit the streets and it ain’t pretty. DTA, a powerful and highly addictive hallucinogenic drug, is transforming its loyal citizens into undead trash. Its users experience an indescribable high, but it leaves them rotting away within days, craving human flesh. No one knows who is dealing this new potent drug, but rumour has it that the motorcycle cult, The Death Wheelers, is behind this concoction. Could this be the end of civilization as we know it? What is motivating this group of psychotic individuals?
                      The cycle of violence indeed continues with this sordid slab of sounds. So hop on, and enjoy one last ride with The Death Wheelers.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      01. Welcome To Spurcity
                      02. Ditchfinder General
                      03. DTA (Suicycle Tendencies)
                      04. Divine Filth
                      05. Lobotomobile
                      06. Corps Morts
                      07. Murder Machines
                      08. Motörgasm (Carnal Pleasures Pt. 1)
                      09. Chopped Back To Life
                      10. Road Rite
                      11. Nitrus

                      Thomas V Jager

                      A Solitary Plan

                        Thomas V. Jäger is best known as the vocalist/guitarist in Monolord, the hottest, most crushing melodic doom band in the world. So, releasing an intimate, deeply and boldly personal album of acoustic and synth based songs hot on the heels of the band’s most successful and powerful album to date, No Comfort might seem like a risky move. And yet, that’s not even the most daring and inspiring thing about A Solitary Plan. Rather, this 7-song album is a cathartic depiction of very real and heart-wrenching situations as a means of musical therapy for the artist and, hopefully, for the listener as well. “This album is me venting all of this emotional energy I’ve been carrying around,” Jäger says. “Now I’m feeling more open about it, but at the start I had a hard time talking with friends and family. The record is what came out instead of talking about it.” The central lyrical theme to the album is a coming to terms with the likelihood of not becoming a parent after wanting to have a family for a long time.

                        “When I put down vocal tracks on the last song ‘The Bitter End’, you can hear my voice is trembling at parts. Every time I listen I get goosebumps, which rarely happens with songs I write.” Other songs also deal with personal challenges, like health scares, existential searching, and death in the family. “Goodbye” is written for Monolord bassist Mika and his wife Emma. “When they had to put down their dog Eskil it affected me greatly. This song is him talking to them and telling them it is gonna be alright.” Heavy stuff, indeed — but in a different way from Monolord’s pummeling riffs. Jäger doesn’t intend for the album to be a “woe is me” exercise, but rather something constructive. “I know that music helps people,” he says. “This is without any irony, it’s therapeutic. I know fans can interpret and use the songs for their own purposes. That feels meaningful to me.”

                        The album began organically, as Jäger often writes and records at home, sketching out song ideas on acoustic guitar into a computer with no set goal for anyone else to hear them. RidingEasy Records chief and Monolord manager Daniel Hall cajoled the guitarist into sending him some of the home recordings he’d been working on, and he immediately pushed for them to be released in this stripped-down form. “I could’ve rearranged them to get a Monolord vibe, but I wanted the basis of just voice, guitar and synths,” Jäger says. “Really laid back and mellow.” He completed the album between tours, with mixing and mastering by Kalle Lilja at Welfare Sounds. Emil Rolof plays a real Mellotron on the title track, all other instruments and voices are Jäger himself. A Solitary Plan will be available on LP, CD and download on July 24, 2020 via RidingEasy Records

                        TRACK LISTING

                        01. A Solitary Plan
                        02. Creatures Of The Deep
                        03. It's Alright
                        04. From The Ashes
                        05. The Drone (Oh Why)
                        06. Goodbye
                        07. The Bitter End

                        Ice

                        The Ice Age

                          As Riding Easy Records’ highly successful Brown Acid series (now at 10 volumes and counting) proves, there is a massive amount of incredible heavy psych and proto-metal music that has been lost to the sands of time. Case in point, the astoundingly great 50- year-old album The Ice Age by Indianapolis quintet ICE was never even released upon its completion.

                          In 1970, the band recorded 10 original songs at 8-Track Studios in Chicago, only to break up shortly thereafter. Two of the tracks were eventually released as a 45 in 1972, but confusingly under a different band name, Zukus! The A-side of that single was featured on Brown Acid: The Ninth Trip, which led RidingEasy Records to discover when licensing the track that an entire album had been languishing in obscurity all of this time. The 2-inch master tapes had been shelved and forgotten until recently when The Ice Age tracks were converted to digital and remixed, preserving the sounds of the original vocals & instruments. Finally, half a century later, this 10-song album of radioready rock will finally see light of day.

                          The Ice Age is an exceptional archive of hard edged rock with serious pop hooks akin to something like Grand Funk Railroad meets The Guess Who and The Move. It rocks hard, but is also interlaced with glorious melodic hooks. Had fate been less fickle, this album would’ve long been a classic rock radio staple. Album opener “Gypsy” is a chiming Byrds-like rocker, with glistening 12-string guitar, organ and somewhat over-zealous vibra-slap. “Satisfy” and “3 O’Clock In The Morning” nicely pair up as the most pop friendly tunes, but with very clever melodies and structures sounding ahead of their time, the latter with an extended entrancing and droning refrain led by shimmering organ run through a Leslie speaker. “Running High” and “Catch You” were the two tracks released in ’72 under a different band name, which received considerable local radio airplay. And, for good reason: Their nice balance of wayward psychedelic pop and troglodyte thunder is exactly what makes The Ice Age so captivating. Album closer “Song of The East” shares the growling glissando and orchestral style that made Vanilla Fudge and The Moody Blues household names.

                          In the late 1960’s five young men formed a rock & roll band on the west side of Indianapolis, Indiana. They chose the coolest name possible: ICE. The group consisted of vocalist/keyboardist Barry Crawford, lead vocalist/ bassist Jim Lee, drummer Mike Saligoe, lead guitarist John Schaffer and rhythm guitarist/vocalist Richard Strange. They was among the first bands to perform an all original set throughout the Midwest at high schools, colleges & concert venues. They opened for national acts like Three Dog Night, SRC, Kenny Rogers & the First Edition, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and others in arenas and theaters. The Ice Age is truly an incredible and unprecedented find, particularly when we’d all thought the glorious history of rock’n’roll had long ago been written and sealed as complete.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          01. Gypsy
                          02. Satisfy
                          03. 3 O'Clock In The Morning
                          04. Copper Penny
                          05. Catch You
                          06. Running High
                          07. I Can See Her Flying
                          08. Run To Me
                          09. He Rides Among Clouds
                          10. Song Of The East

                          Various Artists

                          Brown Acid : The Tenth Trip

                            The tenth edition of the popular compilation series featuring long-lost vintage 60s-70s proto-metal and stoner rock singles. As the celebrated series reaches landmark double-digits, there are no indications it will slow down in the near future. The Brown Acid series is curated by L.A. label RidingEasy Records and retailer/label Permanent Records.

                            Here is what they have to say about the record:

                            "Here we are, arriving at the tenth edition of Brown Acid in just half as many years! As always, we packed in the highest highs of the dankest hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal tracks previously lost to the sands of time. Like we've done throughout this series, all of these tracks were painstakingly licensed legitimately and the artists were paid. It's hard to believe we're already up to 10 volumes of this lysergic Neanderthal wail, but the long-lost jams just keep-a-coming like Texas crude to fuel your rock 'n' roll engine and melt your metal mind.

                            This Trip kicks off with the Hammer of the Gods howl of "Plastic Thunder" by Bitter Creek. The Atlanta, GA quintet's lone single from 1970 on Mark IV Records is rated #6 of the Top 50 Heaviest Songs Before Black Sabbath by GuitarWorld Magazine. You can hear why in the ominous riff and larynx-ravaging chorus that merges the deepest of Deep Purple sludge with The Who's rollicking psychedelia.

                            Not much is known about The Brood's 1969 bluesy paean to dirtbag weed consumption "The Roach" on the It's A Lemon imprint, except that it's a big, growling rocker with a crazed in-the-round blowout of wailing guitar solos, screeching organ blasts, wildly overlapping vocals and drum rolls for days.

                            Nova Scotia, Canada sextet Brothers and One's double-entendre laden single "Hard On Me" certainly pushes the boundaries of what would be acceptable at the time (especially amongst their ever-polite Canadian brethren.) Their lone full length was released in 1970 on short-lived Audat label, the group featuring two sets of brothers (hence the name) recorded the album while all members were between age 13-18-years-old. This glam-influenced single was privately released on the band's own label nearly 4 years later.

                            Louisville, KY quartet Conception's excellent revision of Blue Cheer's "Babylon" (1969, Perfection Records) adds heavy phaser effect on the guitar and a more driving rhythm to make the song entirely their own. Lead guitar and high harmony vocals by Charlie Day (not to be confused with the Sunny Philadelphian actor) are assertive and commanding as he implores listeners onward to hallucinagenic nirvana.

                            Not exactly a typically psychedelic band name for the era, but First State Bank's "Mr. Sun" (1970, Music Mill) pays hearty dividends of boogie bustle. The Central Texas band led by guitarist/vocalist Randy Nunnally released only 3 singles in its career from 1970-1976. For those keeping score at home, their song "Before You Leave" was featured on The Third Trip back in 2016. "Mr. Sun" is the heavy B-Side to "Coming Home To You."

                            Clearly inspired by Jimi Hendrix, Tucson quartet Frozen Sun topped the local charts in 1969 with this barnstorming rocker "Electric Soul" (Capt. Zoomer Records.) The song is replete with guitarist/vocalist (with big Hendrix hair) Ron Ryan's spoken interlude, "Well have you been electrically stoned? You know, living in the danger zone?" We say yes.

                            Ralph Williams and the Wright Brothers took flight with "Never Again" on Hour Glass Records in 1972, and apparently never landed after this 45 with "Dark Street" on the A-side. The serpentine riff and sexually-charged backing vocal grunts drive this archetypical tale of a young man's chemical odyssey... or, should we say, trip?

                            Sounds Synonymous pretty much epitomized heavy fuzz from Michigan with their 1969 single "Tensions" on the Wall Productions label. The Hendrix "Fire" meets Arthur Brown's "Fire" track lunges and lurches with glee throughout its 3-minutes and change of unbridled crunch. Tabernash's "Head Collect" (1972) is the suburban Denver quartet's only release following the name change from The Contents Are and a move from Davenport, IA. This more stately psych-rock chune features Byrds-like harmonies, twangy reverse-looped guitar soloing and Keith Moon-esque drumming that should've made it a chart-topper, but we all know there's no justice in rock'n'roll.

                            The Tenth Trip closes, appropriately, with the "War Pigs" reminiscent fuzz of New Orleans quartet The Rubber Memory's 1970 tune "All Together." The band self-released only 110 copies of their lone album, making it an incredibly sought-after rarity for decades. Alongside a limited edition reissue in 2000, the group reformed for a one-off show before quickly bouncing back into our collective cosmic consciousness."

                            TRACK LISTING

                            01. Sounds Synonymous "Tensions"
                            02. Ralph Williams And The Wright Brothers "Never Again"
                            03. Conception "Babylon"
                            04. Bitter Creek "Plastic Thunder"
                            05. The Rubber Memory "All Together"
                            06. First State Bank "Mr. Sun"
                            07. Brothers And One "Hard On Me"
                            08. Frozen Sun "Electric Soul"
                            09. The Brood "The Roach"
                            10. Tabernash "Head Collect"

                            The Goners

                            Good Mourning

                              The Goners feature former Salem's Pot vocalist/guitarist Nate Gone and former members of Swedish rock band Yvonne. Don't make a big deal about it. This is something new:

                              Rock bottom. A place you have to throw yourself over the edge and burn all your bridges to reach. A place where the devil is laughing as a constant reminder of everything that went to shit. A place where you owe.
                              As the echoes of the past get louder and the forget-me-now's no longer work, you have to pick up the remaining pieces and try to make them fit. You can only wake up in an unknown bed with aching intestines and a throbbing noise inside your skull, still craving more, so many times until you realize that your life didn't quite turn out to be what you expected it to be. The killing floor is crowded and when the smoke starts to clear you start to notice just how bad you've been letting yourself go. It's Monday. You are on your own now.
                              And even as you start to do the right, start paying your dues and bills, doing the 9 to 5 and saying your sorries, you're still standing there like a sack of dead meat in a stinkin' world of decay where nobody cares. Gone but still aware. Ain't that something? Ain't that grand!

                              There's no remedy, no working cure but at least you got loud guitars, thumping bass and bashing cymbals to ease the pain. And as you stumble into your thirties, scorched earth policy-style, you can at least smile at the fact that you finished first. At last you succeded in something. Now you can just lay back, back where the sun doesn't shine and ask everybody else "aren't YOU gone yet?”

                              Don't worry, you soon will see that Gone is just a four-letter word. We're all heading south and again, no one really gives a fuck.
                              It's Sunday. Join us.

                              Holy Serpent

                              Endless

                                The third album by Melbourne, Australia’s Holy Serpent could likely be its defining moment. Seemingly bottomless in its relentless heft, with billowing and suffocating riffs leading glistening melodies, it’s the sound of a band that has locked on to something unique. Endless is fully conceptualized throughout, encapsulating an oceanic theme from the lyrics and art, even to the very structure of the sounds themselves.

                                “Lyrically, it’s heavily influenced by the ocean,” explains vocalist/guitarist Scott Penberthy. “Lots of ocean metaphors and imagery was used. Also the title of the album Endless, is an homage to the ocean: Its mystery, power and its ability to give and take life.” The album loosely follows the lyrical theme of two lovers, oceans apart, waiting for each other on the shores of eternity. Their love is so strong, they eventually walk into the water, ending their lives to be together in the afterlife.

                                Fitting to these themes, the band experiments with sound throughout the album, such as layering in a wobbly synth sound reminiscent of tape push and pull, mixed just loud enough to blend with the instruments. “It’s sort of a haunting sound which gives the album an ebb and flow, much like an ocean’s current or tide,” Penberthy says.

                                The 6-song, 40-minute album finds Penberthy, guitarist Nick Donoughue, bassist Dave Bartlett and drummer Lance Leembruggen expanding their melodic hooks while simultaneously taking listeners on a rigorous journey. It was written over the course of 2 months, then recorded in seclusion at Beveridge Road Recording Studios near Australia’s beautiful Dandenong Ranges with head engineer Marc Russo and mixed by Mike Deslandes. Surrounding themselves with nature and no distractions allowed the band to focus on every detail of the album as a coherent whole.

                                In the time since their self-titled RidingEasy debut in mid-2015, Melbourne, Australia’s Holy Serpent have gained a lot of attention for their rather punk version of heavy psych and metal. Their 2016 skate-metal leaning album Temples further defined their more experimental blend of early Soundgarden, Saint Vitus and Kyuss that eschews simplistic 70s-worship in favor of shimmering sonics and uncommon production techniques. Nonetheless, Endless is like all of the band’s earliest visions fully realized and honed into an album beyond easy classification.

                                Starting with the slow, exaggeratedly compressed 4/4 drum lead in to “Lord Deceptor” — something of a hi-dive anticipation before we plunge headlong into the ensuing depths — crushing and crackling guitars burst in as Penberthy sings in low baritone, “ocean grave, carry me upon a wave / I'm hypnotized in prophecy, what Is left for you and me?” Harmonies drift in and out of the main motif as it sways along into the tempest of “Into The Fire.” Here, a churning riff gathers intensity as the rhythm section builds to a lurching 3/4 time. Reverb-soaked vocals sing, “where the ocean meets the sand, I'll be waiting, I'll be waiting there.” Elsewhere, on “For No One,” impossibly low droptuned guitars slink along as the music swells with space rock abandon. Album closer, “Marijuana Trench” is a play on the Mariana trench, the deepest place on earth. Appropriately, the song plunges from gently strummed acoustic guitar into a tsunami crest that pulls the listener under the dark and enveloping weight of sound as Penberthy’s soothing vocals seem to ease us into the end, subsumed in the album’s powerful allure.

                                TRACK LISTING

                                1. Lord Deceptor
                                2. Into The Fire
                                3. Daughter Of The Light
                                4. Hourglass
                                5. For No One
                                3. Marijuana Trench

                                Various Artists

                                Brown Acid: The Ninth Trip

                                  The ninth edition of the popular compilation series featuring long-lost vintage 60s-70s proto-metal and stoner rock singles. 

                                  Some of the best thrills of the Internet music revolution is the ability to find extremely rare music with great ease. But even with such vast archives to draw from, quite a lot of great songs have gone undiscovered for nearly half a century -- particularly in genres that lacked hifalutin arty pretense. Previously, only the most extremely dedicated and passionate record collectors had the stamina and prowess to hunt down long forgotten wonders in dusty record bins -- often hoarding them in private collections, or selling at ridiculous collector's prices. Legendary compilations like Nuggets, Pebbles, ad nauseum, have exhausted the mines of early garage rock and proto-punk, keeping alive a large cross-section of underground ephemera. However, few have delved into and expertly archived the wealth of proto-metal, pre-stoner rock tracks collected on Brown Acid.

                                  Lance Barresi, co-owner of L.A./Chicago retailer Permanent Records has shown incredible persistence in tracking down a stellar collection of rare singles from the 60s and 70s for the growing compilation series. Partnered with Daniel Hall of RidingEasy Records, the two have assembled a selection of songs that's hard to believe have remained unheard for so long.

                                  "I essentially go through hell and high water just to find these records," Barresi says. "Once I find a record worthy of tracking, I begin the (sometimes) extremely arduous process of contacting the band members and encouraging them to take part. Daniel and I agree that licensing all the tracks we're using for Brown Acid is best for everyone involved," rather than simply bootlegging the tracks. When all of the bands and labels haven't existed for 30-40 years or more, tracking down the creators gives all of these tunes a real second chance at success.

                                  "There's a long list of songs that we'd love to include," Barresi says. "But we just can't track the bands down. I like the idea that Brown Acid is getting so much attention, so people might reach out to us."

                                  TRACK LISTING

                                  01. White Lightning "Prelude To Opus IV"
                                  02. Peacepipe "The Sun Won't Shine Forever"
                                  03. Magi "Win Or Lose"
                                  04. Fiberglass Vegetables "Pain"
                                  05. Erik "Rebel Woman"
                                  06. Stonewall "Outer Spaced"
                                  07. ICE "Running High"
                                  08. Space Rock "Going Down The Road"
                                  09. Buckshot "Barstar"
                                  10. 29.9 "Paradiddle Blues"

                                  Blackwater Holylight

                                  Veils Of Winter

                                    Blackwater Holylight, as the name suggests, is all about contrasts. It’s a fluid convergence of sound that’s heavy, psychedelic, melodic, terrifying and beautiful all at once.

                                    As a heavy band, their songs aren’t anchored to riffs, but rather riffs come and go in waves that surface throughout the band’s meditative, entrancing songs. It’s a hypnotic sound, with orchestral structures that often build tension and intrigue before turning the song on its head — not by simply getting louder or heavier, nor by just layering elements. They expertly subvert the implied heaviness of a part, dissecting it and splaying the song's guts out to seep across the sonic spectrum.

                                    Now, having toured together extensively following the band’s wildly-successful breakout self-titled debut in 2018, Blackwater Holylight has honed their sound and identity to a powerfully captivating beast. Their live set is all about the slow build, seeming to combine the melodic tension of early Sonic Youth crossed with the laconic fever-dream blues of the first Black Sabbath album, and wiry experimentation of post-punk and krautrock.

                                    The lineup on this album is Allison (Sunny) Faris (bass/vocals), Laura Hopkins (guitar/vocals) and Sarah McKenna (synths), with new guitarist Mikayla Mayhew and drummer Eliese Dorsay fleshing out their sound in exciting ways.

                                    “The process of this album was vastly different from our first record,” says Faris. “One, because we recorded it over the course of a few weeks, whereas the first record was over the course of about a year. And two, this album was a true collaboration between the five of us. Each of us had extremely equal parts in writing and producing, we all bounced ideas off each together, and we all had a say in what was going on during every part of the process.”

                                    “One of our favorite things about this album is that because it was so collaborative, we didn't compartmentalize ourselves into one vibe.” She continues. “It’s heavy, psychedelic, pop, shoegaze, doom, grunge, melodic and more. The whole process was extremely organic and natural for us, we were just being ourselves.”

                                    Veils of Winter opens with fuzzed-drenched, drop-tuned bass and baritone guitar leading a dirge riff on “Seeping Secrets.” Faris’ lilting and funereal vocals drop in, adding to the mournful atmosphere until a short turnaround progression hints at changes to come, as Faris and Hopkins harmonize eerily and the tune suddenly turns into a krautrock charge. “Motorcycle” kicks off deceptively with a heavy grunge riff building up for about 40-seconds before the song abruptly shifts gears into a synth-led post-punk harmony, sounding something like Lush meets Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd. “Death Realms” is perhaps the poppiest track, based around soaring shoegaze guitars and interwoven light vocal harmonies. Soft piano notes, occasional woozy whammy bar dives and a driving tom-tom beat solidify its hooks. “Spiders” is a creepy-crawly guitar riff and counterpoint keys, while “Moonlit” explores prog-structures with a shredding guitar solo crescendo. The penultimate track, “Lullaby” is exactly that, a lulling, expansive tune exemplifying Blackwater Holylight’s genre smashing sound as it subtly moves across a vast sonic landscape atop a hypnotic 6/8 beat and repetitive 3-note motif. Throughout the album, their songs shirk traditional verse-chorus-verse structure in favor of fluid, serpentine compositions that move with commanding grace.

                                    TRACK LISTING

                                    Seeping Secrets
                                    Motorcycle
                                    The Protector
                                    Daylight
                                    Death Realms
                                    Spiders
                                    Lullaby
                                    Moonlit

                                    Firebreather

                                    Under A Blood Moon

                                      Fire is what happens when a carbon based object is consumed by oxygen. That chemical reaction is fitting to the sound of Firebreather: The riffs are suffocating, the rhythms fast moving and all-consuming. It’s so blindingly and deafeningly monolithic, don’t be surprised to find yourself gasping for air while listening.

                                      The Gothenburg, Sweden trio has a streamlined focus on driving, symphonic riffs in the vein of High on Fire, Inter Arma and their tour- and label-mates Monolord. The guitar and bass tones are, quite simply, entrancing. Like watching flames engulf a forest, the billowing guitar tones are simultaneously beautiful and destructive, while the rhythms sway and lunge with vicious precision.

                                      “It’s riff based, heavy as fuck, but with a groove to it,” explains vocalist/guitarist Mattias Nööjd, formerly of popular Swedish doom merchants Galvano. “We had gotten off a tour with Monolord in February of 2018 and by that time we had the song ‘Firebreather’ done,” but soon thereafter new drummer Axel Wittbeck joined the fold.

                                      “Once Axel had joined, it was like the flood gates opened,” says bassist Kyle Pitcher. “The rest of the album just came together.” Under a Blood Moon was recorded at Elementstudion in Gothenburg with engineer Oskar Karlsson, who also recorded the band’s lauded 2017 self-titled debut on Suicide Records.

                                      Album opener “Dancing Flames” sets the stage for the onslaught to come with a slinking, serpentine riff over slow churning rhythms. Nööjd’s hushed, gravelly vocals sink into the mix, more like a baritone guitar than a human voice. “Our Souls, They Burn” nicely exemplifies the band’s furious grind that makes even faster tempo songs sound impossibly heavy, like a slow motion stampede. Elsewhere, “We Bleed” perfectly sums up the band’s focus on the riff and groove, honing in on the power of hypnotic attrition. Closing epic, “The Siren” opens with lugubrious, slightly swinging drums and rumbling bass building tension over delay- and phaser-soaked guitar harmonics, until a massive, sliding riff crashes headlong into the proceedings. The song seems to cleverly shape shift across several harmonic and rhythmic parts, without losing the core groove underneath. A short pause for breath, then it’s off to the races with a galloping crescendo for succinct closure. 

                                      STAFF COMMENTS

                                      Barry says: Like the bastard child of Sleep and Converge, Firebreather has raw stoner groove, sliced through with a crisp, modern production aesthetic and ridiculously heavy thrash-influenced riffage. Perfect for those who like a few more BPM on their mathy sludge. Heavy AF, and in no way staid, Firebreather absolutely have my attention.

                                      Warish

                                      Down In Flames

                                        Imagine if Incesticide-era Nirvana were crossed with Static Age-era garage-punk Misfits—a sinister low-budget horror rock with a visceral, twisted weirdness and bludgeoning riffs. Some might call it nightmarish, Riding Easy call it Warish. Warish is a very newly-minted SoCal trio formed in early 2018 that has wasted no time making its presence known. The band formed when guitarist / vocalist and pro-skater Riley Hawk (son of skating legend Tony Hawk) and drummer Bruce McDonnell decided they wanted to try their hand at something more distinct than they’d done previously. “We wanted to do simpler riffs and a fun live show,” Riley explains. “A little more punk, a little bit of grunge... a little evil-ish.”Their sound takes cues from a variety of cool underground sounds and twists it all into an energetic and exciting fist-to-the-face of dark fury. Hawk’s effect-laden vocals hearken to early Butthole Surfers and David Yow’s tortured caterwaul in Scratch Acid. The guitars are heavy and powerful, though decidedly not straightforward cookie cutter punk; more like Cobain’s and Buzz Osbourne’s wiry contortions. The rhythms bash and pummel right through it all with aggressive force ensuring that nothing gets overly complicated and the horrors keep coming throughout the band’s warlike assault.

                                        “Remember when indie rock sounded all grimy, corroded and metal-sludgy-the last thing you’d hear in a commercial or being played at an arena show? Warish do. It’s music to the ears of anyone who wants to damage their ears.” - Rolling Stone.

                                        “Warish totally rules... An awesome mixture of punk energy, biker rock fuzz, and grunge growl.” —Kerrang!

                                        Acid King

                                        Busse Woods

                                          Every small town encompasses that one long stretch of forest where kids run to get high, jam out, and just escape. For San Francisco-based stoner metal trio, Acid King vocalist, guitarist, frontwoman, and mastermind Lori Woods, Busse Woods offered such a retreat in her native Illinois as a teenager in the ’70s. This 3,700-acre section of the Cook County Forest Preserve system beckoned her during high school with its buffet of dope, frisbee challenges, and Black Sabbath blaring from numerous trunks well past sundown. Those days left such an imprint on Lori she titled Acid King’s second full-length released in 1999 Busse Woods. Celebrating its 20th year with a special reissue on Riding Easy Records and tour in 2019, it represents the heart and soul of the band.The album still exudes the same sense of mysticism it did upon release in 1999. As the story goes, Lori and bandmates Joey Osbourne(drums) and Brian Hill (bass) entered a practice space to write the full-length follow-up to their debut Down With The Crown.

                                          Organically, they jammed out five originals and a take on “39 Lashes” from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar.As everything gelled, they recorded with legendary engineer Billy Anderson. Prominent Bay Area artist Frank Kozik initially released the CD on his Man’s Ruin record label. Then “everything fell apart.” Behind the scenes, personal and professional relationships crumbled. Marriages ended. Lineups shifted. In the face of such tumult, the music of Busse Woods rarely got its due on stage in the aftermath, even though the aesthetic would prove influential.In the middle of various reissues and re-releases, Acid King kept touring internationally throughout Europe and Japan from 2005-2015.

                                          In between this time they jammed on riffs and started to craft songs but ultimately didn’t kick it into high gear to finish the release until 2015. They reawakened in the studio with the 2015 opus, Middle Of Nowhere, Center Of Everywhere. While the new music caught critical acclaim and fan approval, a funny thing happened, and Busse Woodsalso came back to life. Its songs would generate the most streams on Spotify. They’d generate loud responses in concert and became their most critically acclaimed release to date. The stars aligned. Twenty years down the line, it felt only right for Lori and Co. to revisit this landmark and give it the proper tour it deserves.


                                          TRACK LISTING

                                          1. Electric Machine
                                          2. Silent Circle
                                          3. Drive Fast, Take Chances
                                          4. 39 Lashes
                                          5. Carve The 5
                                          6. Busse Woods

                                          Here Lies Man took the music world by storm in 2017 with their self-titled debut positing the intriguing hypothesis: What if Black Sabbath played Afrobeat?

                                          Since that time, Here Lies Man has expanded and expounded upon their sound and ideas of heavy riff rock and psych within the ancient rhythmic formula of the clave. The L.A. based band comprised of Antibalas members have toured relentlessly over the past 2 years, while also releasing a second album, You Will Know Nothing and an EP, Animal Noises, both in 2018.

                                          No Ground to Walk Upon is their third album, and continues with an ongoing concept of HLM playing the soundtrack to an imaginary movie, with each song being a scene. The lead single “Clad in Silver” is the soundtrack snippet of a journey to the imaginary place called home, which can never be arrived at. With every step, the character imagines getting closer, but it is a hallucination that fades in and out of perception.

                                          Their debut album Here Lies Man was very well reviewed and featured in loads of end of year polls. BBC 6 & Classic Rock Magazine deemed it among the year’s best, as well as countless other press outlets singing its praises. 2018’s You Will Know Nothing furthered the band’s reputation for genre-smashing rhythmic experimentation, topping many year-end lists as well as earning features from countless metal and indie rock outlets, plus cover stories in weekly papers. No Ground to Walk Upon is the next step in the band’s rapid ascent to what is bound to be influential upon riff based rock.

                                          “We’re very conscious of how the rhythms service the riffs,” explains founder and vocalist/guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Marcos Garcia (who also plays guitar in Antibalas) of the band’s sound. “Tony Iommi’s (Black Sabbath) innovation was to make the riff the organizing principle of a song. We are taking that same approach but employing a different organizing principle: For Iommi it was the blues, for us it comes directly from Africa.”

                                          No Ground To Walk Upon also includes an interesting conceptual mathematics to the entire proceedings, a theme begun on the prior album. “There are interludes between each song that are 2/3 to 3/4 of the tempo of the previous song,” Garcia says. “The reason it breaks down to 2 over 3 or 3 over 4 is that everything in the music rhythmically corresponds to a set of mathematical algorithms known as the clave. The clave is an ancient organizing rhythmic principle developed in Africa.”

                                          Garcia and cofounder/drummer Geoff Mann (former Antibalas drummer and son of jazz musician Herbie Mann) recorded the album much like they did their previous releases, at their own L.A. studio on a Tascam 388 8-track tape machine. Additional layers were recorded with former Antibalas keyboardist Victor Axelrod and other contributors in various other locations, all while the band continued its rigorous touring schedule. 


                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                          Barry says: it's pretty impossible not to nod your head along to Here Lies Man, as alluring as the best funk and the most playful rock groove all mixed into one package. Fiery distorted guitar, rhythmic syncopation and hazy, chunky riffage. The Perfect combination.

                                          TRACK LISTING

                                          1. Clad In Silver
                                          2. Swinging From Trees
                                          3. Long Legs (Look Away)
                                          4. Washing Bones
                                          5. Get Ahold Of Yourself
                                          6. Iron Rattles
                                          7. Man Falls Down

                                          Warish

                                          Runnin' Scared / Their Demise

                                            Woah! 2nd limited 7” release from Warish, debut full length due later in the year.. this is furious punk laden grunge with razor sharp pop edges. The first 7” EP, now nearly sold out at source caused some big waves out there in Riding Easy world.. time to catch a hold and see where it takes you.

                                            The Well

                                            Death And Consolation

                                              Death and Consolation is without a doubt a weighty album title. And, Austin, TX trio The Well is among the heaviest heavy psych bands in existence. So when we say that there’s even more darkness and intensity to the band’s third album than previous efforts, take heed. It’s a deep sea diving bell of enveloping heaviness and longing. “This one is a little more personal,” says guitarist/vocalist Ian Graham. “2018 was a strange, dark year. A lot of change going on in my life, there was a lot of depression and coming out of it over the last year. I wanted to call this Death and Consolation, because in life that’s a constant.” While The Well continue to walk an intriguing line between authentic early 70s doom/heavy psych and frayed weirdness of dark folk — especially with their haunting unison male/female vocals — the new album also adds the stark vibe of post-punk acts like Joy Division and early The Cure. “I feel like this album is almost more gothic. We’re big fans of post-punk,” Graham says. There’s also much less jamming, the songs are tight and concise. And, did we mention, heavy? The band tuned down a full step to C-standard tuning for this album, which gives the proceedings its monstrous sound. Sonically, Death and Consolation picks up where The Well — Graham, bassist/vocalist Lisa Alley and drummer Jason Sullivan — left off with their widely heralded 2016 RidingEasy album Pagan Science. The band once again recorded with longtime producer/engineer Chico Jones at Estuary Studio in 2018, who has turned the knobs for all three of their albums (Jones engineered the band’s debut album Samsara with producer Mark Deutrom [Melvins, Sunn0)))] in 2013.) Samsara, released late September 2014 was ranked the #1 debut album of 2014 by The Obelisk and Pagan Science among the Best of 2016 from the Doom Charts collective. Likewise, the band’s intense — some even say “possessed” — live performances have earned them featured slots at Austin’s Levitation Fest, as well as tours with Kadavar, All Them Witches, Black Tusk and more. “This album might be a little less produced, because I didn’t want to push technical stuff as much,” Graham says. “I’m so scared of getting too complicated when getting better at guitar. This is still kind of punk rock.”

                                              Zig Zags

                                              They'll Never Take Us Alive

                                                AMAZING new album from LA’s Zig Zags..honing their skills to create a fierce brew of US hardcore skate punk and UK Nwobhm ..like the first wve of US thrash from 83.. get on it!! “Everyone puts photos of Sid Vicious up on Instagram. The other night I watched ‘D.O.A’, the documentary about The Sex Pistols, first and only U.S. tour. In it - Sid's a mess, he and his annoying girlfriend. And they're the only ones who get interviewed! Maybe John Lydon and Steve Jones (not to mention the drummer) didn't want to participate. Maybe Nancy made Sid do it. But it whatever the case, I didn't wanna watch it. The rest of the band is crushing! They sound just like the record! As a musician in a touring band, I can't stand Sid Vicious.

                                                He’s cartoon character with a Swastika shirt, nodding off while everyone else loads the gear. I don't care if it's punk - you still gotta be able to play.” - J. Maheu, lead vocals and guitar for Zig Zags 8 years, 7 singles, 3 albums, 3 bass players, 2 drummers and God knows how many shows later - Zig Zags has continually evolved, mutated, transitioned and transformed, rising again and again, like a phoenix emerging from the flame. The addition of the newest member of our triumvirate - multi-instrumentalist, designated bassist (and longtime Zig Zags sound engineer) Sean Hoffman - recalls those golden moments past, when destiny stepped in...like when Neil Peart joined Rush or Bob Rock teamed up with Metallica. In short - the circle is now complete, the cornerstone has been set and the winged serpent rises - once again. Some say it’s luck, but really, it’s about patience.

                                                A band is like a relationship. You have to know when to push, and when to hold back. You gotta listen and you gotta learn. We look to the masters. Like Henry and Glenn, we’ve gone from drinking hooch to pumpin’ iron. We quit smoking. Two of us are married, for chrissakes! After 2017’s brutal European tour, which left us coughing blood and taking names, we sought out Lemmy’s Doctor (Feel Good), who diagnosed us with,”Rock’n’roll Pneumonia”. Like Lemmy, we were pushing too hard. And if you push too hard you’ll end up in an apartment above The Rainbow Room, playing video poker on Christmas Eve (which is also your birthday)...but that’s another story.

                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                01. Punk Fucking Metal
                                                02. Killer Of Killers
                                                03. Fallout
                                                04. No Way Out
                                                05. Ms 45
                                                06. The Shout
                                                07. Why I Carry A Knife
                                                08. They'll Never Take Us Alive
                                                09. Nothing To Do
                                                10. God Sized

                                                Various Artists

                                                Brown Acid: The Eighth Trip

                                                  Brand new edition of the Brown Acid series release this time out to coincide with RSD. All the first pressings of this series sell out on release day. Some super rare and firesome private press heavy rock and psych from the underground rock scene of the 1970's. Essential for all stoner rock rans and heavy sike wig out enthusiasts.

                                                  Bus

                                                  Never Decide

                                                    From the opening notes of Never Decide, the RidingEasy Records debut album by Athens, Greece quartet Bus The Unknown Secretary (aka B.U.S.), you’ll know it's going to be a wild funhouse ride. It doesn't sound like just four people, it sounds like a mob of wild-eyed lunatics on the expressway to your skull. And, you're not gonna know what the band's name means, don't worry about it.  Never Decide is a multifaceted album in the vein of classic hitters like The Hellacopters, Alice Cooper Band, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Orange Goblin.

                                                    "The story of the album expresses the psyche of a person in a dead end and his life is introduced into obsessive rhythms, more personal and random," explains vocalist/guitarist Bill Politis. "There is no happy end here, but the questions remain: Door A or Door B? Time to change or time to die, Never Decide!"

                                                    The album opens as if we're in the studio with the band listening to playback for the first time. There's a chirping test tone and someone starts counting in, "one, two, three..." before it suddenly grinds to a halt. Then suddenly the swirling guitar riff of the pummeling anthem "You Better Come In, You Better Calm Down" launches everything into the stratosphere. The guitars march in lockstep as swinging drums keep it all rolling at furious pace as the vocal chant of the song's title grows into a massive group chant in harmony. Think Uriah Heep's "Easy Livin'" meets Kiss' "Rock and Roll All Night" -- here's another big, blazing anthem for the ages. "I Buried Paul" is the sort of fun, theatrical album track no one makes anymore, not since the days of the Alice Cooper Band. "Lucifer" takes things several shades darker, turning in a dramatic ballad launched by haunting piano chords and led by sinister, sneering vocals sounding something like Ozzy meets Johnny Rotten slowly building to its epic conclusion in double time with ringing harmony guitar leads. "Evil Eyes" and "Moonchild" return the proceedings to the anthemic, pop-laced vibe, replete with major-minor chord shifts and vocal/guitar harmonies galore.

                                                    Never Decide was recorded in just 5 days in February 2018 with multitalented engineer and band's beloved friend John Vulgaris at Electric Highway Studios in Athens, Greece. The entire band -- drummer Aris Fasoulis, bassist Spiros Papadatos, and guitarists Fotis Kolokithas and Politis --recorded the instrumental tracks live in 3 days, reserving the last 2 for vocals. Over the 2 months that followed Vulgaris and the band fine-tuned the mix into the subtle and clever masterwork you have before you. BUS formed in Athens in 2011, releasing two EPs and a full length The Impious Tapes, followed by The Cross EP (2014), and The Unknown Secretary LP in 2016. During that time the band has toured extensively throughout Greece and in neighboring nations. The release of Never Decide will see them expanding that touring radius considerably.

                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                    01. You Better Come In, You Better Calm Down
                                                    02. The Hunt
                                                    03. I Buried Paul
                                                    04. Lucifer
                                                    05. First Life Suicide
                                                    06. Moonchild
                                                    07. Into The Night
                                                    08. Evil Eyes
                                                    09. Dying
                                                    10. This King

                                                    Hell Fire

                                                    Mania

                                                      The free-wheelin’ creativity and infectious vitality of the 80s Bay Area thrash scene is a moment forever locked in time, but its spirit lives on in the galloping guitar picks, soaring harmonies and blistering rhythms of San Francisco quartet Hell Fire. The band’s perfect hybrid of NWOBHM theatrics and American thrash attitude delivers a rousing and genuine expansion on sounds long lost to pointless battles over who can be the most “extreme.”

                                                      Mania, Hell Fire’s third album and proper debut on RidingEasy Records (the label also reissued the band’s sophomore album, Free Again for the first time on vinyl in January 2019) warmly condenses elements of influences like Angel Witch, Iron Maiden, Rainbow, Exodus, Metallica, Riot, Virtue and Diamond Head into 10 tracks of headbanging MUYA anthems.
                                                      “Thematically, everything on the album comes from personal experiences,” says vocalist/guitarist Jake Nunn. “From the highs of partying together out here in Oakland, or the nostalgia of being a kid learning Zeppelin on a beat up guitar, to the extreme lows of isolation, personal trauma, and mental illness. Sonically we want our records to sound like you're standing in front of the stage at a show. The power of Marshall stacks in front of your face, drums at your ear level, thunder of the bass and feeling the presence of the room.”

                                                      Hell Fire achieves just that — and then some — on Mania. The album was recorded in Grass Valley, California at engineer Tim Green’s Louder Studios. Having also recorded their previous album with Green, the sessions proved highly productive for the band since they were already familiar with the setting and able to expand upon ideas they hadn’t been able to explore previously.
                                                      “We’re more excited about Mania then anything we’ve ever done,” Nunn says. “We were able to spend a bit more time arranging the songs and writing from a more personal perspective lyrically. We came out of this recording feeling much more accomplished with our performances and couldn't be more happy for this to be our first release with RidingEasy Records.”
                                                      Hell Fire began when bass player Herman Bandala moved to San Francisco from Tijuana, Mexico with the hopes of forming a heavy metal band. Herman posted an ad to Craigslist which caught the attention of guitarist Tony Campos. They bonded over a mutual love of 80s thrash and NWOBHM, which was a hard thing to find in the Bay Area scene at the time. The lineup slowly morphed over time, finally solidifying with vocalist Jake Nunn also taking up second guitar duties and drummer Mike Smith joining prior to 2017’s Free Again.

                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                      01. Warpath
                                                      02. Mania
                                                      03. On The Loose
                                                      04. Born To Burn
                                                      05. Transcending Evil 06. Lashing Out
                                                      07. Isolator
                                                      08. The Dreamer
                                                      09. Knights Of The Holy
                                                      10. Masochist

                                                      Warish

                                                      Warish

                                                        Imagine if Incesticide-era Nirvana were crossed with Static Age-era Misfits— sinister low budget horror-rock with a visceral, twisted weirdness and bludgeoning riffs. Some might call it nightmarish, we call it Warish . Warish is a very newly-minted SoCal trio formed in early 2018 that has wasted no time making its presence known. The band formed when guitarist / vocalist Riley Hawk and drummer Bruce McDonnell decided they wanted to try their hand at something more distinct than they’d done previously. “We wanted to do simpler riffs and a fun live show,” Riley ex-plains. “A little more punk, a little bit of grunge... a little evil-ish.”

                                                        Their sound takes cues from a variety of cool underground sounds and twists it all into an energetic and exciting fist to the face of dark fury. Hawk’s effect-laden vocals hearken to early Butthole Surfers and David Yow’s tortured caterwaul in Scratch Acid. The guitars are heavy and powerful, though decidedly not straightforward cookie-cutter punk; more like Cobain’s and Buzz Osbourne’s wiry contortions. The rhythms bash and pummel right through it all with aggressive force ensuring that nothing gets overly complicated and the horrors keep coming throughout this five track, eleven minute debut.

                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                        1. Bones
                                                        2. Voices
                                                        3. Fight
                                                        4. Human
                                                        5. Shivers

                                                        Hell Fire

                                                        Free Again

                                                          Formed in recent years in San Francisco, though it may seem more likely that they hatched fresh out of a time travel portal from the mid-80s Bay Area thrash scene, Hell Fire have the classic look and sound of modern metal’s halcyon days. Hell Fire’s sonic assault warmly condenses elements of influences like Angel Witch, Iron Maiden, Rainbow, Exodus, Metallica, Riot, Virtue and Diamond Head into 8 tracks of headbanging MUYA anthems.

                                                          The free-wheelin’ creativity and infectious vitality of Bay Area thrash is a moment forever locked in time, but its spirit lives on in Hell Fire’s galloping guitar picks, soaring harmonies and blistering rhythms. The band’s perfect hybrid of NWOBHM theatrics and American thrash attitude delivers a rousing and genuine expansion on sounds long lost to pointless battles over who can be the most “extreme.”

                                                          Hell Fire began when bass player Herman Bandala moved to San Francisco from Tijuana, Mexico with the hopes of forming a heavy metal band. Herman posted an ad to Craigslist which caught the attention of guitarist Tony Campos. They bonded over a mutual love of 80s thrash and NWOBHM, which was a hard thing to find in the Bay Area scene at the time. Just before Hell Fire entered the studio to record their debut album Metal Masses, Jake Nunn joined on vocals. The lineup continued to develop over time, finally solidifying with Nunn also taking up second guitar duties and drummer Mike Smith joining prior to recording Free Again.

                                                          Hell Fire’s 2017 sophomore album, Free Again is being released for the first time on vinyl and remastered for CD and download in January 2019. it was recorded over 5 days in Grass Valley, California at engineer Tim Green’s Louder Studios (The Fucking Champs, Melvins.) Where Metal Masses showcased aesthetic nods to Metallica’s Kill ‘Em All album (as well as a cover photo brilliantly depicting a blurry hand speedily playing a Flying-V guitar), Free Again finds the band coming into their own with emphasis upon grooves, a beefier sound and tighter songs that expertly shift into new parts at the drop of a hat.

                                                          Opener “Free Again” kicks things right off with a galloping riff forming out of a haze of feedback as the tape machine comes up to speed. The anthemic chorus showcases Nunn’s powerful voice as twin guitar harmonies lead into a thundering double-time coda reminiscent of Iron Maiden’s “Aces High.” Elsewhere, a marching snare drum beat and totemic blasts set up dueling guitar leads of “City Ablaze” while dizzying, chugging 16th-note guitars drive the blistering “Live Forever” into oblivion. “Wheels of Fate” and “The Dealer” echo the groove based tunes and harmonies of Rainbow and Gary Moore era Thin Lizzy. Album closer “End of Days” is a chorus effect drenched ballad that builds into a crushing lament over the constant beckoning of depression and the struggle for freedom and clarity. It’s a touching and powerful closing to an album that traverses many moods and packs in more great parts into a single song than most thrash bands do on an entire album. 

                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                          1. Free Again
                                                          2. City Ablaze
                                                          3. Live Forever
                                                          4. Wheels Of Fate
                                                          5. Beyond Nightmares
                                                          6. The Dealer
                                                          7. Destroyers
                                                          8. End Of Days

                                                          Bewitcher

                                                          Bewitcher

                                                            Bewitcher is a Satanic speed metal band from Portland, Oregon. Here is their manifesto: “Rock ’n’ roll is the devil’s music, and heavy metal is it’s bastard child. In the 1980s, the radical fundamentalist Christian right-wing in America waged a war against this music, bringing it’s practitioners and it’s unholy muse to the forefront of the public consciousness. Over a quarter-century later, the devil’s rock ’n’ roll is still alive and well, but the war is far from over. And so it came to pass...

                                                            “In the year of Thirteen of Satan’s third millennium, a new force rises to defend the ways of old. Bewitcher is the ancient black flame of magic, mayhem, freedom and liberation, burning in blatant opposition to the laughable norms of this modern age . Instead they look to that bygone era, before it’s pollution by imitators of a lesser intention, when heavy metal in all it’s glory truly represented the tenets it was founded upon .

                                                            “May your children be corrupted, may your foundations be shaken, may your mundane existences be forever altered, for this spell cannot be broken. Fall and obey! And beware the curse of the Bewitcher!” “Throw a dart at the track list and come up with a winner no matter where the needle lands. As perfect a summoning of hellish rock ’n’ roll traditions as you’re likely to come across in 2016.”

                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                            1. Bewitcher
                                                            2. Speed Til You Bleed
                                                            3. Sin Is In Her Blood
                                                            4. Wild Blasphemy
                                                            5. Midnight Hunters
                                                            6. Harlots Of Hell
                                                            7. Hot Nights, Red Lights
                                                            8. Black Speed Delirium
                                                            9. In The Night (The Cult Will Rise)

                                                            Alastor

                                                            Slave To The Grave

                                                              Alastor hearken to the days when heavy rock was the music of the rebel, the occult adherent and lurker in the shadows, not hipster bros. Theirs is the doom sound for those who discovered it on the edge of town, in the cold rain, perhaps, as an escape from the squares who’ll never understand.
                                                              Alastor is heavy doom rock for the wicked and depraved. Drenched in heavy, distorted darkness and steeped in occult horror that will make your skin crawl and ears cry sweet tears of blood, Slave To The Grave pulls no punches in the Swedish band’s unabashedly bleak themes.
                                                              "It’s an album that circles around the concept of death,” explains lead guitarist Lucy Ferian. “It’s about death in both its spiritual and personal meaning — how death is a part of our everyday life. How it affects our thoughts and actions. How some of us spend our entire life in fear of death, while some seek it. But no matter how you live your life and no matter what you achieve here on this earth. You are still just a slave to the grave."
                                                              Alastor formed under a bad moon in 2016, consisting of Dharma Gheddon (vocals, bass, acoustic guitar and organ), Lucy Ferian on lead & acoustic guitar and organ, Terry Fying on guitar and Levi Athan on drums. Yes, those are their given birth names, why do you ask?

                                                              The quartet released its epic 3-song debut album Black Magic in early 2017 via Twin Earth Records, followed by the 2-track “Blood On Satan’s Claw” EP on Halloween the same year. Joining forces with RidingEasy Records in 2018, Alastor hunkered down to summon the 7-track hateful gospel Slave To The Grave with engineer Magnus Sörensen.

                                                              The album opens with the dramatic spoken intro “I döden är vi alla lika” (In death we are all equal) backed by rolling thunder and a clanging church bell to set the stage for the rumbling dirge “Your Lives Are Worthless.” Forlorn vocals and drop-tuned guitars seep like murky syrup as the song slowly morphs through varying riffs across the nearly 10-minute song as it builds to an epic crescendo of squealing guitar notes and pummeling half-tempo drums. “Drawn To The Abyss” is a swinging anthem punctuated by haunting backing vocals and scraping wah-wah guitar sounds leading into a powerful double-time outro. “N.W. 588” is the hook-laden melodic centerpiece sounding like an apparent nod to Technical Ecstasy leading into the flamenco-themed acoustic ballad “Gone.” The anthemic album title track rings out with pliant lead guitar notes countering the dark lyrics and behemoth, propulsive rhythms that can only foreshadow the heft of 17-minute album closer “Spider of My Love” which brings the album to a fittingly massive and funereal close. Perfect. 


                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                              1 I Döden är Vi Alla Lika
                                                              2 Your Lives Are Worthless
                                                              3. Drawn To The Abyss
                                                              4. N.W 588
                                                              5. Gone
                                                              6. Slave To The Grave
                                                              7. The Spider Of My Love

                                                              Various Artists

                                                              Brown Acid - The Seventh Trip

                                                                Everybody’s favorite source for the hard stuff is back in business, with ten more lethal doses of rare hard rock, heavy psych and proto-metal! Hard to believe we’re eight Trips in and we haven’t lost any steam since the get-go. As usual, we’re laying the heaviness on you in the most legit way possible. These obscure tracks have all been licensed, the bands have been paid, and the sources are all analog. The quality of tracks seems increase along with the number of Trips and this cohesive collection comes outta the gate with both guns blazing!

                                                                Pegasus recorded one single in Baltimore in 1972 and they made it count. “The Sorcerer” is a throbbing ripper that prior to this was basically unknown. However, it doesn’t seem too far fetched to speculate that Black Flag lifted the riff for “No Values” from this track eight years later. Unlikely, but possible, especially considering how big a Black Sabbath fan Greg Ginn is. Pegasus was lauded back in the day for “how much they delivered that Black Sabbath feel.”

                                                                You may read the track title for the Nobody’s Children 45 and start thinking, OH NO, the guys behind Brown Acid have given up on bad trips. Fret not, “Good Times” was originally written as a joke, but when Ron Chapman of the Sump’N Else TV show heard it he passed it along to the folks behind GPC records and they quickly pressed 100 copies. Unfortunately, the evening it was slated to be played on the local Dallas radio station KLIF, Robert Kennedy was murdered and premier was pre-empted by a Classical music tribute to him. The song has since been bootlegged numerous times and even covered by the Butthole Surfers, but this is the first time it’s been fully licensed.

                                                                Youngstown, Ohio is the most commonly referred to city of the entire Brown Acid series. This town of just under 150,000 people may’ve had the highest (literally and figuratively) per capita output of heavy 45s. Blue Amber recorded this in 1971 at Gary Rhamy’s analog Mecca, Peppermint Recording Studios. This two-riff boneheaded banger sounds like a caveman protest song with an extraordinary amount of delay on the vocals. No wonder this 45 fetches three-figures on the rare occasion it comes up for sale.

                                                                Batting clean-up, we have Negative Space, the only LP sourced track on this album. This crunchy jam comes off the band’s 1970 record entitled Hard, Heavy, Mean, & Evil. At over six and a half minutes, “The Calm After the Storm” is the longest track included on this volume, but it never gets dull. Fun fact: before changing the name to Negative Space, Rob Russen called his band Snow and released the “Sunflower” 45 in 1969 — you might recall that groover from the First Trip.

                                                                We generally stick with American artists for this series, but every now and again something foreign grabs us and shakes us to the core. One example is this Swedish 45 by Zane. These crazy Swedes did one incredibly damaged (hence the title) record on the MM label in 1976. These proto-punkers relied heavily on synth for this tune and mixed the drums so obnoxiously loud, you might think the kit is in the room with you. This is a weird one that somehow sounds like Zolar X covering Wicked Lady. Brown Acid material all the way!

                                                                B must be short for Bangers, ‘cuz this Side is full of ‘em! The flip of this Trip begins with a virtually unknown Oklahoma record from 1973. Blizzard was Rod McClure’s high school band, but you couldn’t possibly guess that teenagers recorded this heavy slab on the Token (should’ve been Toking) label. It’s one of the best we’ve comped and it sounds like a hypothetical MC5/Hendrix collaboration.The “Under the Ice” level drum fills will knock your socks off if the heavy shred doesn’t first.

                                                                OOOOk-lahoma, where the wind comes sweepin' down the plain and apparently where the fuzz goes seepin’ in your brain! Third World is the second Okie inclusion on this Trip and we couldn’t be more stOOOOOked to be sharing this very obscure single with y’all. If the heavily distorted two-note riff doesn’t grab ya, the apocalyptic Grand Funk vibes will. Once they get their mitts on ya, Third World will take you back to 1971 and leave ya there. Can we hitch a ride too?

                                                                Ever heard of Virginia, Minnesota? We hadn't either until we got in touch with Calvin Haluptzok and got the back story on his band Sweet Wine. This bitchin' one-off 45 must've melted the snow off the roofs of the households brave enough to play it when it came out in 1970 and it's still red hot nearly 50 years later. This vino may be sugary, but it packs an incendiary punch! Sadly, Calvin passed before we could get his music re-released, but it was nice to have reached him before it was too late. The Sweet Wine legacy lives on thanks to the Brown Acid archivists.

                                                                C.T. Pilferhogg wins the award for most puzzling band name in our series. What’s not puzzling is how righteous both sides of their self-released 1973 single are! Featured here is the A-side “You Haul” which is one of the best examples of a poor man’s Deep Heep (Deep Purple meets Uriah Heep) we’ve ever heard and the demonic Echoplex-laden laughs mixed into this track are out of control. The band was touted as “Southwest Virginia’s Finest Boogie Band”, but don’t let that fool ya. They could bang heads with the best of ‘em.

                                                                The closer on the Seventh Trip is one we hold very near and dear. Not only is this record the one that’s taken us the longest to secure the rights to, it’s also one of the very best examples of heavy psych you’ll ever hear. The track rings your bell (literally) straight out of the gate and the dank psychedelic vibes kick in immediately. “The Darkness” was recorded in a basement studio in Kansas City in 1969 when the lead guitarist was only 16. The band was from a rural Missouri town, played only one impromptu gig in Clinton, and pressed only 125 copies of this, their only single. It should come as no surprise that it sells for hundreds of dollars when it’s offered. That’s a small price to pay for such greatness

                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                1. Pegasus - The Sorcerer
                                                                Baltimore, Maryland
                                                                Self-released
                                                                1972

                                                                2. Nobody's Children - Good Times
                                                                Dallas, Texas
                                                                GPC Records
                                                                1967

                                                                3. Blue Amber - We Got Love
                                                                Flush Records
                                                                Youngstown, Ohio
                                                                1971

                                                                4. Negative Space - The Calm After The Storm
                                                                Castle Records
                                                                Camden, New Jersey
                                                                1970

                                                                5. Zane - Damage
                                                                MM Records
                                                                Malm?, Sweden
                                                                1976

                                                                6. Blizzard - Peace Of Mind
                                                                Token Music
                                                                Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
                                                                1973

                                                                7. Third World - End Of Time
                                                                McAlester, Oklahoma
                                                                Rocktron Records
                                                                1971

                                                                8. Sweet Wine - Things You Told Me
                                                                Arcaide Records
                                                                Virginia, Minnesota
                                                                1970

                                                                9. C.T. Pilferhogg - You Haul
                                                                Norton, Virginia
                                                                Self-released
                                                                1973

                                                                10. Summit - The Darkness
                                                                Clinton, Missouri
                                                                North Room Records
                                                                1969

                                                                Dunbarrow

                                                                Dunbarrow II

                                                                  There’s a hauntingly classic feel to Dunbarrow’s sound that gives it, in the band’s own words, “an eerie rawness.” It’s not raw in a lo-fi or distorted sense — far from it, the production is exceptionally clean and powerful. It’s the vibe to the music that has a dreamlike and ghostly quality, like a mysterious recording imprinted onto an old cassette tape.

                                                                  Dunbarrow’s pristine, unadorned sound shares the unpretentious brilliance of classic heavy progenitors jamming in basements and barns, before the big budgets and bloated habits diluted hard rock records into an echo chamber awash in reverb and layered in distant, screeching hobbits. “It’s a heavy sounding record without being just tons of over-distorted guitar tracks,” says guitarist Kenneth Lønning. “We’ve never been fascinated by that, and we’re trying to push in the other direction.” Its heft comes from the band’s use of space in their songs.

                                                                  Without the Haugesund, Norway quintet’s exceptional musicianship, such an intimate sound would be impossible. Drummer Pål Gunnar Dale sets the skeletal core with driving urgency and tastefully punctuating triplet fills, Bassist Sondre Berge Engedal slinks throughout with the limber bounce of John Paul Jones, while Lønning’s and Eirik Øvregård’s guitars weave dark, bluesy tapestries with emphasis on melodic chord structures without burying them in distortion or other effects. Vocalist Espen Andersen ties it all together with his warm, folky delivery that gives it all the feel of a bygone era of storytelling in song.

                                                                  “Maybe more than the previous record, this one is more vocal driven,” Lønning says. “But it still has those quirky transitions, eerie build ups, folk-inspired parts and the haunting solos.” Many of the album’s poetic lyrics were written by former bassist/vocalist Richard Chappell, whose writing personifies the group. Along with the album’s running theme of love and despair, is that of recognizing one’s own dark sides and developing your shadows into something you can control, inspired of the work by Carl Jung.

                                                                  Key to the band’s impressive sound is that the singer is also the recording and mixing engineer. Andersen also recorded the band’s excellent 2016 debut (formally released wordlwide by RidingEasy in late 2017), now with more studio experience for both Andersen and the band, Dunbarrow II is a truly refined experience. To further perfect their sound, the group teamed up with one of the most prominent producers in Norway, Christer Cederberg (Anathema, Tristania) for the first few days in order to get the sound just right. Then, Espen did the rest. The result is as eponymous and definitive as its title. 

                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                  01. On Your Trail
                                                                  02. Please Let Me Be
                                                                  03. Weary Lady
                                                                  04. Ode To The Moon
                                                                  05. Feberdrm
                                                                  06. The Wolf
                                                                  07. The Demon Within
                                                                  08. Witches Of The Woods Pt. II
                                                                  09. On This Night

                                                                  Micks Jaguwar

                                                                  Fame And Fortune

                                                                    Rock and roll is dead in New York City. Long live New York City rock and roll. Mick's Jaguar is bringing noisy, wild, unafraid big rock back to NYC. Crazy rents, corporatized venues, and kids listening to DJ's: it's hard being a band in this town.

                                                                    This isn't LA and Mick's Jaguar is a product of their environment: a windowless dungeon practice space 20 feet below the trash covered sidewalk of the Lower East Side. Rats, grime, the sounds of the city; Mick's Jaguar gleefully pillages the history of rock music to create thoroughly modern, but classic rock and roll. Not quite punk, but not metal either, this is hard rock and roll that's been put through the brain blenders of 6 musicians who pair their Judas Priest shirts with Steely Dan hats. They claim no musical lineage to New York - they just live there. If you need to compare them to something, the night AC/DC played CBGB's would be about as close as you can get.

                                                                    The group formed as a drunken Rolling Stones cover band, and after a few years of mainlining Stones songs and playing sporadic shows marred by violence and sprayed by beer, they started writing originals that attracted the attention of RidingEasy Records. And their new album, Fame and Fortune, sounds absolutely nothing like the Stones. The three guitarists — yes three guitars — open the album with a riff of buzzsaw intensity that would make a Ramoneproud. But then like Jim Morrison sashaying into a wine shop, it drunkenly careens into a big sounding rock and roll album somewhere in between Van Halen and Tres Hombres. Guitar solos abound, Thin Lizzy harmonies soar, the bass and drums make a groove that will shake the asses on the dance floor and put a rumble in your loins. Songs about life, death, cars, blood, murder, sex, drugs and booze are the world of Mick's Jaguar. Don't forget - this is what rock and roll is all about. Listen close and you'll hear hat tips to your bands, Mick's Jag knows their history and likes to rip it apart.

                                                                    Recorded in Brooklyn at Figure 8 Recording by engineering wizard Philip Weinrobe, and fueled by a steady diet of Allen’s Coffee Brandy, the Fame And Fortune sessions resulted in only one hospital visit and it just might be your favorite album of 1978, 1988, or 2018. This is music that's made for listening to while driving fast in your car, and while relaxing at the local strip club. It's okay to have fun. Cute indie bands make everyone puke. That shit stops now. Let there be rock.

                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                    1. The Real Boss
                                                                    2. Pay To Play
                                                                    3. Where We Go
                                                                    4. Here Comes The Night
                                                                    5. Blood On The Snow
                                                                    6. Hellride
                                                                    7. Damnation
                                                                    8. Country & Punk
                                                                    9. Call The Guy
                                                                    10. New Orleans Blues

                                                                    Svvamp

                                                                    Svvamp 2

                                                                      Swedish trio Svvamp’s self-titled debut was a breath of fresh air — unpretentious and free, primordial homespun classic rock that landed in the Top 20 Albums of 2016 in the Doom Charts consortium of writers and radio. The most common remark being just how genuine and uncontrived it sounded, unlike most bands that posture and mimic the sounds of yesteryear.

                                                                      So, it may be hard to grasp how fully realized the band sounds on Svvamp 2, while still sounding as laid back as their debut. Perhaps it can be partly attributed to Svvamp’s jump from self-recording on a 4-channel cassette deck to self-recording on a comparatively expansive SIX-channel system. That’s two whole more tracks to fill up, folks! The obvious comparison to the groundbreaking psychedelic albums of the late 60s, when artists began experimenting with studios moving from 4, to 8 to 16 tracks, is fitting here too.

                                                                      “On Svvamp 2 the sound is more raw in the sense that it’s stripped,” vocalist/drummer Adam Johansson explains. “So the music is more bare. We make sure all of the instruments are treated equally, they all have their place in a song. Obviously, with 6-tracks now available we’ve had a bit of fun with that.”

                                                                      Svvamp is three friends — Johansson, Henrik Bjorklund and Erik Stahlgren, all of whom share lead vocal duties — drawn together for the sake of jamming and a love of rock, folk and blues. Their resulting heavy psych sound bears hints of Cream, Eric Bell-era Thin Lizzy, CCR and Crazy Horse.

                                                                      Svvamp 2 opens with a lightly plucked electric guitar line that Clapton would be proud to claim his own, before quickly launching into the heavy riff anthem “Queen”, echoing the bare chested bravado of Grand Funk Railroad. “Sunshine Street” is charmingly unapologetic garage pop reminiscent of Big Star. “The Wheel” is a hook-loaded bluesy rocker, while “How Sweet It Would Be” hearkens to the glazed zombie drive of Canned Heat’s “On The Road Again.” Elsewhere, “Alligator” brings on a showstopping stomp of dueling guitars, syncopated drums and wailing, distorted vocal howls to close out the proceedings with fitting aplomb.

                                                                      “We definitely wanted to mix styles and genres, so the music stays interesting for the band, like the first record,” Johansson says. “Our approach is still fairly straightforward and live. And, all of us sharing lead vocal duties solidifies that the band consists of three equal members.”

                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                      01) Intro
                                                                      02) Queen
                                                                      03) The Wheel
                                                                      04) Sunshine Street
                                                                      05) How Sweet It Would Be 06) Hillside
                                                                      07) Surrender
                                                                      08) Out Of Line
                                                                      09) Blues Inside
                                                                      10) Alligator 

                                                                      Death Wheelers

                                                                      I Tread On Your Grave

                                                                        Heavily inspired by the aesthetics and ethos of bikesploitation movies such as The Wild Angels, Werewolves on Wheels and Psychomania, The Death Wheelers seek to glorify this unsung era of movie making through their sordid sounds. Taking musical cues from rock’s greats such as Davie Allan, The Cramps, Motörhead, The Stooges and Grand Funk Railroad, the Death Wheelers perpetrate the tradition of heaviness by making zero compromises when it comes to laying down the groove. Through their bare bone, stripped down, jammy approach of their very own brand of sleaze n’ roll, this instrumental Canadian quartet pushes the listeners to their deepest, filthiest carnal/sexual desires. I Tread On Your Grave is more than just an album — it’s devised to serve like the soundtrack to a wild B-movie in your mind, following this truly awesome plot synopsis:

                                                                        Decimated in 1972 by local authorities, all members of The Death Wheelers, a notorious motorcycle club, have been buried at the Surrey cemetery. But the time has come and they have risen for their last ride. They’re back from the grave and they’re hungry for blood! Nothing can stop this gang of living dead from recruiting new members as they travel coast to coast to find the filthiest, nastiest, trashiest individuals to join their ranks. Their goal, assemble a legion of 13 “discycles” (disciples+cycles) to seek revenge on the pigs that dismantled the club and send them to their graves. The cycle of violence continues…

                                                                        Yes, please! Their debut LP, a sonic desecration dedicated to the dead, is an ode to the earlier days of rock ’n’ roll when lust and danger were an integral part of the scene and culture. This violent offering of pure aural aggression, recorded full band with no bells and whistles or studio trickery, is a testament to what The Death Wheelers stand for: rawness and power.

                                                                        Various Artists

                                                                        Brown Acid: The Sixth Trip

                                                                          The forthcoming latest edition of the popular compilation series of long-lost vintage 60s-70s proto-metal and stoner rock singles. The series is curated by L.A. label RidingEasy Records and retailer/label Permanent Records. If you’d told us when we started this epic journey that we’d have six volumes worth of licensed tracks released in just three years, we would’ve laughed in your face! Doing the Dark Lord’s work isn’t an easy job, but somebody’s gotta do it, so here we are with six Trips under our belt and more lined up. You heads just can’t get enough obscure hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal from the late-60s & 70s! And for that, we’re grateful for the opportunity to keep laying these slabs in your lap.

                                                                          This isn’t just a random mixtape we threw together off the Internet. We find the records, track the bands and transfer the tapes, so you don’t have to. The bands did their job back in the day by writing, recording and releasing this material, most times against all odds, and you’ve squandered your hard earned scratch on this record, so I guess the least we can do is continue to compile quality Rock’n’Roll cuts from the golden age of heaviness. This time around we have 10 deep cuts from across the continental US of A and one from our neighbors up North. This Trip kicks off with an outrageous number from Gold out of San Francisco circa 1970. The band used to open their sets with this over-the-top frantic jammer which is absolutely mind-blowing and also leads one to believe that the only band that could’ve held a candle to Gold back in the day would’ve been the mighty Blue Cheer. As we delve deeper into the depths, Canadians continue to prove that they could bang heads with the best of ‘em! Heat Exchange from Toronto released the rollicking ripper “Inferno” on the Yorkville label way back in 1968 and it’s still thumping almost 50 years later! Missouri isn’t a state that brought us a lot of heavy 45s, but there are a handful of outstanding tracks from the Show Me State, one of which is the funk-laced anthem “Give Me Time” by Backwood Memory from Kansas City. Speaking of Show Me, many thanks to our KC pal Jeffrey Harvey for turning us on to this one and helping put us in touch with the band.

                                                                          The longer we do this, the more we begin to believe that Youngstown, Ohio was the Hard Rock Mecca back in the day. Travis is yet another Youngstown group that aimed to get asses out of seats and out in the streets. “Lovin’ You” is a groovy banger with a sultry riff originally released on the prolific Starshine Productions imprint. Six years prior to his Arcadian synth-funk novelty hit “Space Invaders” from 1980, Victor “Uncle Vic” Blecman took Flight into the studio with a list of relationship requirements. Amongst which are his need for “Luvin’, Huggin’, & More”, with emphasis on the “More” part if we’re to believe the urgency with which he delivers this fist-pumper. If you don’t immediately recognize the Truth & Janey moniker, you need to get with it and familiarize yourself with their incredible 1976 LP “No Rest For The Wicked”. It’s a protometal masterpiece that’s been reissued on Rockadrome. Released four years earlier than their debut LP, “Midnight Horseman” is a 45-only track backed with a cover of “Under My Thumb”. Dennis Bergeron from Rockadrome was crucial in helping us obtain the rights to this Iowa burner.

                                                                          Another Iowan group, West Minist’r, self-released three 45s between 1969 and 1975. They’re all great in their own way, but “My Life” hit the crunchy sweet spot in ’71 with vocals sounding like a fresh from primal scream therapy John Lennon over a zonked-out Hendrix groove. You can count on hearing more from West Minist’r on future Trips. It’s nearly impossible that Dayton, Ohio’s Purgatory didn’t seize the “Strange Days” and join “The Soft Parade” while “Waiting for the Sun”. And although “Polar Expedition” wears its influences on its sleeve, 1969 would have been at least a little worse off if the band hadn’t self released this single.

                                                                          Johnny Barnes was definitely “smokin’ that reefer” and “drinkin’ that wine” when he released “Steel Rail Blues” in 1976. The label states that you could order a copy of this 45 for by sending $1 to a PO Box in Boston and it’s the only record on the Brown Acid series that seems to be obtainable currently for about the same amount it was sold for over three decades ago. That said, it’s doubtful that it will remain so cheap for much longer. With a track as heavy as “Is There No Peace” it’s easy to let the name of the label on this 45 slide. In Chicago in 1970 PSLHRTZ seemed like as good a label name as any for the guys in Zendik to release this insane recording on. Halfway through the track you might be wondering to yourself, “How was this not a hit?”, and then you hear the lyrics to the last bit of the song and understand. Thank Christ for Zendik, even if he is dead. Well, there ya have it. Months worth of record digging and detective work for about 40 minutes worth of music. Some people might think this is a waste of time, but we don’t and we hope you don’t either. This is the stuff that makes life worth living, at least until the next Trip…

                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                          1. Gold - No Parking
                                                                          2. Heat Exchange - Inferno
                                                                          3. Travis - Lovin You
                                                                          4. Enoch Smoky - It's Cruel
                                                                          5. Backwood Memory - Give Me Time
                                                                          6. Flight - Luvin, Huggin & More
                                                                          7. Truth & Janey - Midnight Horsemen
                                                                          8. West Minst'r -My Life
                                                                          9. Purgatory Polar Expedition
                                                                          10. Johnny Barnes - Steele Rail Blues
                                                                          11. Zendik - Is There No Peace 

                                                                          Blackwater Holylight

                                                                          Blackwater Holylight

                                                                            The notion of 'heavy music' is continuing to expand of late, with many intrepid artists finding new ways to incorporate the power of traditional metal into new music, but without all of its trappings. Enter Portland, OR quartet BlackWater HolyLight to further swirl musical elements into a captivating hybrid of emotional intensity. Heavy psych riffs, gothic drama, folk-rock vibes, garage-sludge and soaring melodies all collide into a satisfying whole with as much contrast as the band’s name itself.

                                                                            'I wanted to experiment with my own version of what felt ‘heavy’ both sonically and emotionally,' says founder and vocalist/bassist Allison Faris. 'I also wanted a band in which vulnerability of any form could be celebrated.' BlackWater HolyLight — Faris, guitarist/vocalist Laura Hopkins, drummer Cat Hoch and synth player Sarah Mckenna — formed upon the breakup of Faris’ longtime band and she sought a fresh start. 'In my last band I was the only female in a group of 6, so I wanted to see how my song writing and vulnerability could glow taking the drivers seat and working with women.'

                                                                            The band’s self-titled debut begins with a simple, almost grunge-like riff as a chorus of voices introduce a melodic line in call-and-response until the band kicks in, slowly building into crescendo like a lost outtake from Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy. Elsewhere, “Sunrise” begins with a chorus-drenched post-punk groove until a sonic boom of heavily distorted guitar skree erupts out of nowhere. Nearly as suddenly, the song returns to its lulling core, subtly building the tension until it ruptures completely in a blast of noise. Likewise, “Carry Her” establishes a dark, sparse melody and distinctly thin sounding drums not far removed from early work of The Cure. However, BlackWater HolyLight’s penchant for surprise attack finds a sudden shift into a doom-like dirge, colored with eerie synth notes and pounding shards of fuzz. Throughout the album, their songs shirk traditional verse-chorus-verse structure in favor of fluid, serpentine compositions that move with commanding grace. The band expertly, yet subconsciously, incorporates hints of Chelsea Wolfe, Celebration, Captain Beefheart, The Raincoats, The Stooges, Pink Floyd, Jane’s Addiction and more to form their unique brand of dark’n’heavy transcendence.

                                                                            BlackWater HolyLight was recorded by Cameron Speice at Gold Brick Studios and The Greenhouse, and with Eric Crespo at Touch Tourcher Recording in Portland. 

                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                            1. Willow
                                                                            2. Wave Of Conscience
                                                                            3. Babies
                                                                            4. Paranoia
                                                                            5. Sunrise
                                                                            6. Slow Hole
                                                                            7. Carry Her
                                                                            8. Jizz WItch

                                                                            Spiny Normen

                                                                            Spiny Normen

                                                                              Spiny Normen were an incredible mid-’70s Houston hard rock, progressive, psychedelic rock band that featured mellotron, Vox Jaguar, crunchy, heavy guitars, flute with echo effects, and lots more. A totally lost relic, this self-titled album was recorded at a community college and never released. The recording is very English, dark, mysterious and proggy, but also very acid-drenched.

                                                                              “Circa 1976, Gerry [Diaz] and I would skip class, smoke whatever scrap of contraband we could scrape together and meet in the high school auditorium where there was a piano and bang out crunchy rhythms. Gerry was playing guitar, listening to Alice Cooper, hair down to his back and about the only MexicanAmerican in a white bread school. He was cool! So when he said one day, ‘Hey man we should jam some time,’ I was stoked. I found an ancient Vox Jaguar that had belonged to Fever Tree and a Kustom amp that I blew out just right, that made the most beautiful distortion, accompanied by a beloved phase shifter. Over the next three years we began to experiment, spending months penning intense, bizarre, surreal and mind-affecting pieces influenced by King Crimson, Pink Floyd, film soundtracks, Van Der Graaf Generator, and the like. I was collecting keyboards: a mellotron, a single-key-play Moog... Gerry was adding echos, early guitar, synth and tons of pedals. I learned the flute. In we went with a hired stand-up bass player and little engineering knowledge to the community college 8-track recording studio and just played like psychedelic Mozarts. Timpani, live effects, sound effect records, backward echo, violin bow on guitar and plenty of echo. Gerry and I on vocals. What came out was still, to this day, in my humble opinion, some very complex, untouched territory, holy-what-the stuff. We were all about 19.” - Steve Brudniak (cofounder of Spiny Normen).

                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                              1. Arrowhead
                                                                              2. Wrecko Wild Man Ride
                                                                              3. Carry Your Water
                                                                              4. The Monkeyweasel
                                                                              5. To Meet The Mad Hatter
                                                                              6. The Bell Park Loon
                                                                              7. In The Darkness Of Night
                                                                              8. The Sound Of Younger Times

                                                                              Various Artists

                                                                              Brown Acid : The Fifth Trip

                                                                                The hits just keep coming—for this fifth lysergic journey, Riding Easy assembles ten heavy slabs of obscure rock the likes of which have never been seen before… not in this form, anyhow. And as usual, the tracks from these impossibly rare records have all been fully cleared through the artists themselves. Great lengths were gone to in order to get the best possible master sources, the worst case scenario being an original 45. The legendary Captain Foam kicks off this trip like an anvil to your skull with a rollicking stomper sounding like The Who with Matt Pike’s thunderous guitar tone. “No Reason” wasn’t easy to find, but lo and behold, the super sleuths located him and got his blessing to include the A-side of his sole single. Good luck finding an original copy of the record. It’s rarer than raw beef—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

                                                                                The other nine tracks continue the onslaught in typical Brown Acid form: George Brigman’s charmingly disjointed bedroom-fi production of “Blowin’ Smoke,” Finch’s way out of time and place grungeadelic anthem “Nothing In The Sun,” Cybernaut’s heavy prog, Fargo’s hallucinogenic BBQ-sauce soaked “Abaddon,” Mammoth’s fittingly beefy eponymous riff-monger, Flasher’s “Icky Bicky” boogie, Ohio-based screamers Lance, Zebra’s gritty rendition of “Helter Skelter” and finally, the mysterious and previously unheard Thor appears here exclusively and for the first time ever with their unknown 45 track “Lick It.” 

                                                                                R.I.P.

                                                                                Street Reaper

                                                                                  When R.I.P. came crawling out of the sewers of Portland, Oregon, last year, their grimy, sleazy street doom was already a fully formed monstrosity, quickly infecting the minds of everyone it encountered. Now, borne from the band’s declining mental health and an increased focus on songwriting, Street Reaper is even more unhinged and menacing than their debut In The Wind. Borrowing equally from ’80s Rick Rubin productions and Murder Dog magazine aesthetics, this latest album is a streamlined yet brutally raw manifesto of heavy metal ferocity hearkening to the era when both metal and hip hop were reviled as the work of street thugs intent on destroying America’s youth.

                                                                                  Throughout, Angel Martinez’s guitar and John Mullett’s bass are inextricably interlocked like a massive sonic steamroller, while drummer Willie D keeps the beat solid and simple for the most powerful impact. Plus, the band’s extensive touring and excessive virgin sacrifices have provided singer Fuzz evermore agile vocal chords to drive it all home with extreme precision. Operating on the belief that doom is not tied to a tuning or a time signature, but rather a raw and terrified feeling, R.I.P. eschews well-trodden fantasy and mysticism tropes of the genre and focuses on conveying the horror and chaos inherent in the everyday reality of the human mind.

                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                  Unmarked Grave
                                                                                  Street Reaper
                                                                                  Mother Road
                                                                                  The Dark
                                                                                  The Other Side
                                                                                  Shadow Folds
                                                                                  (CD Only TRACKS )
                                                                                  Brimstone
                                                                                  The Cross
                                                                                  The Casket
                                                                                  Die In Vain

                                                                                  Spelljammer

                                                                                  Inches From The Sun

                                                                                    Riding Easy Records presents a domestic reissue on CD and first time vinyl pressing of this celebrated Swedish trio’s 2010 debut album Inches From The Sun —a groove based hybrid of classic Desert Rock and rumbling European doom that launched the band to international acclaim! “Spelljammer is some sort of hybrid between Acid King and a balls-kicking machine that has been buried in the sand outside Kyuss’ rehearsal ‘space’ just waiting to be unbleached.” — PlanetFuzz “Here is yet another pretty amazing Stoner Rock band from / Sweden, and man do these guys really deliver the goods. Slow, bass-heavy, and insanely fuzzed-out stoner doom jams are what this band is all about.” — Heavy Planet “This is for fans of Sleep, Lowrider, Kyuss, Slo-Burn and Acid King, but if this is a debut, one can foresee only great things for this band, including the overcoming of the masters!” —Sludge Swamp

                                                                                    Monolord

                                                                                    Rust

                                                                                      Gothenburg, Sweden trio Monolord is a rare breed: A band both encompassing and transcending genre; a vortex of heavy rock density that consumes all others. Their thunderous, tuneful heft has built a rabid international fanbase in short order since their 2014 debut. But Rust, the band’s third full length, truly exemplifies why some refer to them as the Nirvana of doom.

                                                                                      Monolord’s enveloping, syrupy sludge is a vibe, it’s a state of mind. Not riffs for riffs sake, but a collective buzzing, rattling and rumbling that’s more total environment than collection of songs. Together, guitarist/vocalist Thomas Jäger, drummer Esben Willems and bassist Mika Häkki create a massive, dynamic sound with ultra-low frequencies serving as its fourth member.
                                                                                      “We've always been inspired by great band musicians — as opposed to technical solo peacocks,” Willems says. “Because that force of a band really playing together as one single unit is incomparable. At its best, it's just unstoppable.” And, Monolord is truly unstoppable, on record and on stage. “A heavy groove that contains both bombastic overkill and a lot of dynamics is what we always aim for in Monolord; in playing, in song writing and arranging, in recording,” Willems says.

                                                                                      Album opener “Where Death Meets the Sea” perfectly exemplifies their mastery of dynamics and hooks with a driving, infectious buzzsaw riff that lesser bands would ride off into the sunset, but Monolord uses subtly to spur the song’s skull rattling rhythmic core ever onward. Jäger’s watery vocals glide over ominously building verses that erupt with the song’s insistent refrain. Being such a tight rhythmic unit, it sounds almost like an early ZZ Top record played at half speed. “Dear Lucifer” squeals and hums with slow deliberation as Willems summons Dale Crover pummel with chasm like low-tuned toms and syncopated cymbal crashes. The album’s title track is also its centerpiece, opening with a dramatic, shimmering Hammond organ intro as Jäger sings, “you are the reason that I lied/ You are the reason that I cried/ Please don’t wait until tomorrow/ There’s only pain and grief and sorrow.” Suddenly, the band kicks in with a downtuned open-C line that nosedives down the guitar neck as the drums hammer down for the kill. Elsewhere, tastefully understated guitar harmonies elevate the behemoth churn of “Wormland” and apocalyptic album closer “At Niceae” simmers in a slow build of rumbling guitars and rolling drum triplets.

                                                                                      Monolord formed in 2013, quickly recording their 2xLP debut Empress Rising, which RidingEasy Records released in April 1st, 2014. The second album, Vænir, followed April 28th, 2015. The 2-song Lord of Suffering / Die in Haze EP was issued in late 2016 amid the band’s relentless touring schedule in order to tide fans over until the next full length.

                                                                                      Noisey calls Monolord "universally beloved" and "Swedish doom royalty”, while Consequence of Sound deems them, “a truly modern sound: recognizably doom, but with glistening production values and adventurous songcraft.” Vænir landed on countless Album of the Year lists in 2015, and Rust is poised to open an entirely new range of possibilities for Monolord. 

                                                                                      Shooting Guns

                                                                                      Flavour Country

                                                                                        Canadian sextet Shooting Guns is known (and oft-nominated) for their film soundtrack work, but Flavour Country is more like a collection of anthems for your jettison from this universe into the multiverse.

                                                                                        While they’re known for heavy and saturated sounds befitting crazed horror-comedy flicks like Netflix hit WolfCop, Flavour Country features some of the band’s fastest, heaviest and most visceral material to date. Yet, it also features some of the band’s most atmospheric sounds as well.

                                                                                        At times there are slight hints of Ennio Morricone’s Spaghetti Western twang amidst the looping Meddle-era Pink Floyd heavy psych and driving drone reminiscent of Bobby Beausoleil’s belladonna laced soundtrack to Kenneth Anger’s Lucifer Rising. But for the most part here, Shooting Guns is out for blood, regardless of tempo.

                                                                                        Album opener “Ride Free” kicks off with a blistering wall of guitars blaring and rattling out of the gate like mutant progeny to fellow Canadian biker-rock heroes Steppenwolf having duly fired all of the guns, exploded into space and returned to hunt down every last one of us. It accelerates from there: “French Safe” sounds like an unhinged battalion of musicians driving full throttle like a scene from a George Miller Road Warrior movie. Biting, lengthier tracks like “Simian Shelf” and the title track occupy the heavy end of the psychedelic spectrum, haunting the foggy moor between early, bluesy Sabbath-styled doom riffery and heavy pulse-riding kraut-rock.

                                                                                        Flavour Country is the first album recorded by the band themselves at their own Pre-Rock Studios in Saskatoon, SK, located in the middle of the Canadian prairies. The album title’s spelling is itself a nod to the band’s Great White North homeland. The album was mastered by John McBain (ex-Monster Magnet, Carlton Melton), who also mastered the band’s previous RidingEasy releases.

                                                                                        Shooting Guns have toured over 60,000 miles across Canada over the past 7 years but have yet to tour Internationally, which will be a big focus for them after this release. They are touring their live score to F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu across Canada throughout 2017 and also just finished scoring the soundtrack to Another WolfCop (sequel to WolfCop), which is slated for a US theatrical release in Sept 2017. Their sophomore LP, Brotherhood of the Ram, released in 2013 through RidingEasy Records was nominated for the 2015 JUNO Metal/Hard Album of the Year as well as the Polaris Music Prize. Their debut LP, Born To Deal in Magic: 1952-1976, was also nominated for the Polaris Music Prize in 2012.

                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                        Ride Free
                                                                                        French Safe
                                                                                        Simian Shelf
                                                                                        Vampires Of Industry
                                                                                        Flavour Country
                                                                                        Black Leather Jacket

                                                                                        Dunbarrow

                                                                                        Dunbarrow

                                                                                          Summoned to play it the old way in a new age, Trondheim, Norway quintet Dunbarrow draws inspiration from freezing winter nights, unpolished demo tapes from the 70’s and the Swedish throwback rock from the beginning of the 21st century. The result is Norwegian proto-doom with a back-to-basics sound, from Pentagram and Witchfinder General to Quicksilver Messenger Service.

                                                                                          Dunbarrow’s clean, unadorned sound shares the unpretentious brilliance of classic heavy progenitors playing basements and barns, before the big budgets and bloated habits diluted hard rock into an echo chamber awash in reverb and layered in distant, screeching hobbits. The band’s 9-track self-titled album is a classic in the sense that every song becomes instantly recognizable after just one listen.

                                                                                          With lyrics like the clever paean to a young witch mother’s birth of “Lucifer’s Child”, Dunbarrow has a wealth of gloomy sentiments: “Can you understand my young mother’s plight / Away from the comforts that burn at the stake / She gave birth to a venomous snake / On her great pyre she smiled / For she carried Lucifer’s child.”

                                                                                          Dunbarrow is based in the far northern Norwegian city Trondheim, but is originally from Haugesund on the west coast of Norway. The band has been playing together for over 8 years through different band names and genres. In 2014, vocalist Espen Andersen joined the band upon the departure of original singer/bassist Richard Chappell. Sondre Berge went from playing drums to playing bass. Kenneth Lønning and Eirik Øvregård are still on the guitars, with Pål Gunnar Dale taking over the drums permanently in 2016. Espen Andersen recorded and mixed the debut album at Stoy Studios. Dunbarrow is hitting the studio for their second album this summer. 

                                                                                          Ask any New Yorker what makes them special and they’ll all tell you something different. But there’s something very particular about a city so condensed with a vast range of humanity all facing myriad daily challenges that gives its rock music a brash, direct aggression unlike other places. Case in point, NYC trio Blackout’s take on doom and stoner rock is filled with a gritty, mechanistic heft unlike bands of their ilk from anywhere else.

                                                                                          Subsumed within the greasy grooves of The Horse there are echoes of NYC heavy legends like Helmet, Cro-Mags, Judge, Prong and others — not as intentional homage, but rather a vibe that permeates and inadvertently gives its bands a unique power that few can match.

                                                                                          After a brief hiatus between the March 2015 release of their self-titled sophomore album on RidingEasy Records, Blackout has regrouped and (ahem) gotten back on The Horse for an 8-song blast of riffs that does not fuck around.

                                                                                          On one fateful day in July 2016, with a handful of mushrooms and a bottle of tequila, vocalist/guitarist Christian Gordy set out to write an entire new Blackout record. Following the departure of original drummer Taryn Waldman earlier that year, the band’s fate was uncertain. But, Gordy’s writing forray resulted in a wellspring of inspiration and by happenstance he contacted drummer Adam Taylor who had just parted with his band Ghost Punch. Within two months of banging out riffs with bassist Justin Sherrell, Blackout was back in action.

                                                                                          The Horse was recorded over 4 days in September 2016 at Spaceman Sound in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood, which the band describes as “a whirlwind session laced with loads of buds, Petey’s burgers and lipstick.”

                                                                                          Or, described by blackout themselves: “What you have before you now is a messy plate of meat, slathered in weird sauces. A haunted steak from from Centaurus A to sink your tingling fangs into. Sit back, crack a semi cold one, maybe get some snacks… and turn this motherfucker up to 8.”

                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                          1. Graves
                                                                                          2. Let Em Ride
                                                                                          3. Roach Bites
                                                                                          4. Rat Spirit
                                                                                          5. Amnesia
                                                                                          6. Mean Pads
                                                                                          7. Holy Wood
                                                                                          8. The Horse

                                                                                          Various Artists

                                                                                          Brown Acid : The Fourth Trip

                                                                                            If you thought we were getting close to the end of the Brown Acid series with our last Trip, you were dead wrong…we’re only just getting rolling. The well of privately released hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal 45s is deep and we are nowhere near tapped out. Most of these records were barely released and never properly distributed so they ain’t easy to find, but they’re out there if you’re willing to dig…and we aren’t afraid to get our hands dirty. Hard calluses have formed from handling the shovel and we’ve sifted through a lot of dirt, but we’ve dug up another ten tremendous records to share with all the heavy heads out there. This volume brings together eight insanely rare and skull-crushingly heavy 45s as well as two previously unreleased bangers. You may remember the Zekes’ jaw dropper “Box” from the First Trip. If you don’t, you better go back and refresh your memory, you stoner.

                                                                                            That song rips! And so does this previously unheard recording we legally obtained from the Beverly Hills records vaults. “Comin Back” is the longest tune we’ve yet to include on this series and it’s a full-on rager! The only surviving copy of this recording came to us on the original 1/4” master tape from Hollywood’s long-defunct Demars & Duffy Music. We did our best to preserve the recording and we think you’ll appreciate the rawness. There have been numerous groups named Bad Axe over the years, but the one you hear here is the baddest.

                                                                                            This five-piece fresh outta high school kicked out this jam (and a few others) in a Chicago studio in 1973 just for the hell of it. As a garage band, they were previously named The Burlington Express and they went on to be known as Bitch, but these dudes hit their stride as Bad Axe and “Coachman” is their crowning achievement. It went completely unreleased until 2014 when Permanent Records issued it and “Poor Man, Run” as a limited edition 45 with a killer picture sleeve. It’s long out-of-print and only obtainable now on Brown Acid. The rest of the records included on this volume vary in rarity, but at least two of them were virtually unknown until we discovered them. You’ll win the lottery before you find copies of all of the original 45s in even the best record stores. Many of the records included in this volume are owned only by the members of the bands and some of the band members don’t even have personal copies.

                                                                                            That’s just how hard these guys hit it back in the day! We’re lucky some of these guys are still alive and well enough to give us permission to use their masters. And for that, we thank them. And you, for all your support. Brown Acid is here to stay…as long as you’ll have us. Plug in, turn up, and freak out…this is what RocknRoll is all about.

                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                            1. Kanaan 
                                                                                            2. Leave It Stone Garden 
                                                                                            3. Oceans Inside Me Headstones 
                                                                                            4. Carry Me On Wrath 
                                                                                            5. Rock N? Roll Fever Bungi 
                                                                                            6. Numbers Erving Forbush 
                                                                                            7. The Train Zekes 
                                                                                            8. Comin Back (previously Unreleased)
                                                                                            9. Bad Axe 
                                                                                            10. Coachman Ash 
                                                                                            11. Warrant Axas 
                                                                                            12. Lucifer

                                                                                            What if Black Sabbath played Afrobeat? In short, that’s the underlying vibe to the self-titled debut by Here Lies Man. The L.A. based quintet is founded and conceptualized by Marcos Garcia of Antibalas, bringing his erudite experience of West African rhythms and music to the more riff-based foundations of heavy rock. The results are an incredibly catchy and refreshing twist on classic forms, without sounding forced and trite like some sort of mash-up attempt. Here Lies Man merges and expands musical traditions organically, utilizing the talents of drummer Geoff Mann (son of jazz musician Herbie Mann) and a host of skilled musicians to make Garcia’s vision a reality.

                                                                                            “The repetitive guitar figures that happen in Afrobeat music are
                                                                                            very close to heavy rock guitar riffs,” Garcia explains. “ This music is based on the clave. It’s the musical algorithm that the rhythms revolve around. It's what gives it integrity and provides the basis for the musical conversation that's happening. I knew I wanted it to be psychedelic and heavy, and I wanted to be expanding on a musical tradition rather than pretending to be creating something new.”

                                                                                            And that expansion is the brilliant, hazy, psychedelic, hook-laden 8-song masterwork Here Lies Man, available on LP, CD and download on April 7th, 2017 via RidingEasy Records. (Written by Dave Clifford).

                                                                                            R.I.P.

                                                                                            In The Wind

                                                                                              Operating on the belief that heavy metal didn’t come from the forest or beam down from outer space, but rather that it crawled up out of the sewer and writhed to life in the grit and grime of the streets, the four rock n roll freaks of R.I.P. call their sound ”Street Doom” and spread the message with heavy touring across the United States. Obsessed with death and disgusted with the scene, they dragged their knuckles into the studio in 2016 and excavated a debut LP dedicated to fear and trembling, calling it In The Wind.

                                                                                              R.I.P. is defined by fast, regressive riffs, terrified vocals, live shows akin to near-death experiences, and steadfast adherence to the notion that doom isn’t how slow or de- tuned you can play, but the combination of fear, death, and leather. In The Wind is just the right level of down ’n’ dirty guttural rock that cuts and chews with raw fury. The Portland, OR quartet — guitarist Angel Martinez, vocalist Fuzz, bassist John Mullett and drummer Willie D. — echoes the grimy vibe of legends like Saint Vitus, Pentagram and Motorhead , with the no b.s. aesthetic of the early Metal Massacre compilations.

                                                                                              “Screaming out of the gate, here’s the third volume of the critically acclaimed Brown Acid series! We curate these heavy compilations so the heads can hear the best songs they’ve never heard. As usual, this batch of tracks is off the rails. It’s an absolute tragedy that these cuts aren’t in heavy rotation on classic rock radio…yet.

                                                                                              “We continue down the wormhole of hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal here on The Third Trip with a set of tunes so obscure they can’t be seen without a third eye. Most of these tracks were recorded in shack-sized studios, privately pressed for promotional purposes, and tossed out like last night’s half empties only to later be discovered to be half-full, if not overflowing with greatness. The majority of these tracks are from the good ol’ US of A with two exceptions, Ash-labelmate New Zealanders,Chook, and the mighty Limeys, Factory.

                                                                                              “We won’t take full credit for it, but we’re sorry to say that these types of 45s have skyrocketed in value over the last little while and some of the records included in this volume have only changed hands a handful of times on the collector market. Although it’s a bummer for the pocketbook, we say “Hell Yeah!” it’s about time these rarities have become recognized as the priceless artifacts that they are.

                                                                                              “Unlike many labels doing compilations of rare dusties, we’ve actually gone to the trouble to contact the bands included here for permission to use their material. It was a long and arduous task to say the least, but it’s the way it should be done. And we paid ’em! So sleep easy knowing that no one was ripped off in the making of this record.

                                                                                              “As they say, first is the worst, second is the best, third is the one with the hairy chest. So take a shot of whiskey, shotgun a beer, and put some fuzz in between your nipples with the hairiest Trip you’ve taken yet. You won’t be sorry you did.”


                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                              01. Grand Theft “Scream (It’s Eating Me Alive)”
                                                                                              02. Chook “Cold Feet”
                                                                                              03. Lindholm Brothers “No Time For Last Goodbyes”
                                                                                              04. Diehard “Heartbreak”
                                                                                              05. Blown Free “The Wizard”
                                                                                              06. Factory “Time Machine”
                                                                                              07. Inside Experience “Be On My Way”
                                                                                              08. Cold Swett “Quit Your Foolin'”
                                                                                              09. Elliott Black “Highway Song”
                                                                                              10. First State Bank “Before You Leave”
                                                                                              11. Flash Beverage “The Train”

                                                                                              The impressive crux of Pagan Science, the sophomore album by Austin trio The Well, is that It’s a multiplicity of itself. From the band’s dual male/female vocals to their transcendently timeless sounds and erudite lyrical themes, Pagan Science is crystalline in its complexity and clarity at the same time.
                                                                                              The Well walk an intriguing line between authentic early 70s doom/heavy psych and the more frayed-edge-of-sanity weirdness of their hometown’s legendary noise rock scene, whilst also splicing in shades of chamber choir vocals, occult rock and dark folk.

                                                                                              Sonically, Pagan Science picks up where The Well — bassist/vocalist Lisa Alley, guitarist/ vocalist Ian Graham and drummer Jason Sullivan — left off with their widely heralded 2014 RidingEasy debut Samsara. Here, the band’s heavy psych, proto-metal sound growing evermore vast, yet more focused on hooks, and their lyrics more conceptually intricate. Part of a running thread throughout the album’s introspective lyrics is the notion that the world outside of one’s own mind is also a creation and reflection of the interior world of that mind. And, just like the band’s sound is one thing (undeniably heavy) and simultaneously another (dark folk, blues... there’s even a Crosby, Stills & Nash cover, “Guinnevere”), it’s this multiplicity that makes Pagan Science such a captivating record.

                                                                                              Pagan Science was recorded with producer/engineer Chico Jones at Micro Mega Studio in 2016. Jones also previously engineered the band’s debut album Samsara with producer Mark Deutrom [Melvins, Sunn0)))] in 2013. Samsara, released late September 2014 was ranked the #1 debut album of 2014 by The Obelisk and widely praised in the press. Likewise, the band’s intense — some even say “possessed” — live performances have earned them featured slots at Austin’s Levitation Fest in 2015 & 2016, as well as tours with Kadavar, All Them Witches, Black Tusk and more.

                                                                                              The album kicks off with a looped vocal harmony launching a slithering guitar riff and thunderous drums on “Black Eyed Gods” in which the band’s dual vocalists sing in unison throughout like Byzantine monks. “Skybound” starts with a fast churning riff with vocals run through heavy delay and reverb until the drums cut out briefly, then, dropping to half- time the song becomes a massive psychedelic throb as the vocals continue to loop onto themselves above the proceedings. “A Pilgrimage” takes a slower groove, accented by pulsing congas and single note Middle Eastern sounding guitar progression. “Byzantine” begins with monk-like chants, swelling cymbals and droning guitars building up to pounding toms until it all coalesces in a massive eruption. “Choir of the Stars” slowly builds over a lugubrious bass line as a snarling slide guitar weaves throughout, while haunting sounds of yelping coyotes echo in the background. The song ends in a pig-like guitar squeal as “Brambles” begins beneath. Syrupy guitars merge with Alley’s and Graham’s unison vocals to form a slowly building monolithic sound describing a paranoid chant. Throughout, Pagan Science channels the supercharged no-frills hard blues of Blue Cheer and Deep Purple while adding multiple layers of effects, entrancing vocals and the dark thrill of a funhouse hall of mirrors. 

                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                              01. Black Eyed Gods
                                                                                              02. Forecast
                                                                                              03. Skybound
                                                                                              04. A Pilgimage
                                                                                              05. Drug From The Banks
                                                                                              06. Byzantine
                                                                                              07. One Nation
                                                                                              08. Choir Of The Stars
                                                                                              09. Brambles
                                                                                              10. I Don't Believe
                                                                                              11. Guinnevere
                                                                                              €

                                                                                              Holy Serpent

                                                                                              Temples

                                                                                                The concept of “skate-rock” has been around for many years, but it has never been embodied as well as on Temples, the new album by Holy Serpent. While the band members are just casual skateboarders themselves, one might be tempted to think that skating has subtly influenced the band's sound. Not only in the elements of 70s hard rock crossed with punk values and energy. But, the music itself is like riding a skateboard: slow grooving passages can shift on a dime into fast thrill-ride riffs. There’s an exhilarating freedom of movement and unpredictability to the sound.

                                                                                                In the short time since their self-titled RidingEasy debut in mid-2015, Melbourne, Australia’s Holy Serpent have gained a lot of attention for their rather punk version of heavy psych and metal. Fittingly, there’s a strong vibe of early Soundgarden, Saint Vitus and Kyuss to Temples in that it’s undeniably heavy, but also clever in its experimentation with subtle tempo shifts, multiple vocal effects and other production techniques. But it’s still more Sabotage than Sabbath Bloody Sabbath.

                                                                                                Temples is heavier in tone than the first album, and also more sonically rich and aggressive. The 5-song, 44-minute album finds vocalist/guitarist Scott Penberthy, guitarist Nick Donoughue, bassist Dave Bartlett and drummer Danny Leo (new drummer Lance Leembrugen has replaced Leo since recording to complete the live lineup) expanding the hooks while simultaneously taking listeners on a rigorous ride.

                                                                                                “We've found playing slow all the time got a tad boring so we've mixed it up a bit with tempo changes and added more parts to each song to make them sort of flow like a story,” Penberthy says. “The challenge was making sure it still flowed as it should. ‘All killer no filler' was a bit of a motto this time around when writing the songs.”

                                                                                                Album opener “Purification by Fire” emerges slowly from a primordial swamp of a reversed gong crash, synth swells, guitar feedback and lightly plucked bass notes before it all coalesces into a driving but slow-burn riff that spans the length of the fretboard as the drum patterns also subtly shift and slide underneath. It’s a brilliant effect, albeit one you might miss if you’re not paying attention. “Bury Me Standing” launches full throttle with a raging guitar solo over a driving riff/rhythm before a quick about-face into a march as Penberthy’s effect-soaked vocals wail above the proceedings. The song builds slowly upon its elements until Penberthy howls an impassioned plea, “bury me standing, I will not forgive you.” Album centerpiece “Toward the Sands” further pushes the tempo changes and sonic experimentation to great effect as the song effortlessly turns on a dime from fast rager to doom, while all sounding cohesive and melodically infectious. Album closer “Sativan Harvest” is an epic nearly 12-minute multi-part journey, built around a central blues motif that drifts into a massive haze of droning guitars set to fat rhythm pickup tone as it swells then recedes, only to restructure into a mutated version of the original motif that eventually abruptly ends with violin, cello and synths in a slow fade into the ether. 

                                                                                                Swedish trio Svvamp is the real deal. Countless bands today strive to sound genuine -- whether faking their way through a ProTools pastiche of carefully assembled takes, painstakingly tarnishing tracks to give them a “live feel” or simply copying the style of their favourite band. And, usually, their posturing is entirely transparent. Every once in a while though, you find a band without self-conscious pretence that truly echoes the mood and vibe of an era when the rulebooks were burned with the draft cards and the act of playing rock’n’roll was simultaneously defiant and inherently casual. Svvamp is just that type of primordial beauty captured on a perfect 11-song debut. Svvamp was created by three friends - Adam Johansson, Henrik Bjorklund and Erik Stahlgren - drawn together for the sake of jamming and a love of rock, folk and blues. Their resulting heavy psych sound is immediately gripping in its homespun feel and hints of Cream, Eric Bell-era Thin Lizzy, CCR and Crazy Horse.

                                                                                                “Serpent in the Sky” kicks things off with a syncopated bluesy riff romp, while “Burning Down” echoes the stomping freeform feel of the New Yardbirds’ “How Many More Times.” Once things settle in to the laid back shuffle of “Free At Last”, Svvamp really finds its groove and lets loose like Axis: Bold As Love Jimi Hendrix . “Time” sounds almost like Ziggy Stardust era Bowie with a boogie swagger and cheeky vocals. “Set My Foot and Leave” sounds as earnest and unpretentious as The Faces (and at times like Rod Stewart’s “Maggie May”, without all that shaggy, smug Rodness). Elsewhere, “Blue In the Face” slips into a heavy groove while “Oh, Girl” bashes out stop ’n’ go riffs with the Marshall stack dramatics of Blue Cheer . Chiming mandolin and acoustic guitars lead the charming closing anthem, “Down By The River" (not the Neil Young song).

                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                1: Serpent In The Sky
                                                                                                2: Fresh Cream
                                                                                                3: Burning Down
                                                                                                4: Free At Last
                                                                                                5: Time
                                                                                                6: Bug Rest
                                                                                                7: Set My Foot And Leave
                                                                                                8: Golden Crown
                                                                                                9: Blue In The Face
                                                                                                10: Oh Girl
                                                                                                11: Down By The River

                                                                                                Contrary to the band's name, downtime is a rarity for Slow Season. Sandwiched between summer 2015's extensive tour with their RidingEasy labelmates Mondo Drag and Electric Citizen, plus several short west coast jaunts, the hard-working quartet also found time to hammer out its most powerful and ambitious album yet. Written, engineered, produced and mixed themselves on their own equipment, entirely on analog tape, Westing is a hard-hitting and powerful reminder of how at one time a rock 'n' roll band could be a transcendent experience.

                                                                                                While Slow Season's sound continues to effortlessly nod to the great bands of the 60s-70s, Westing is truly the sound of a band coming into their own. The songwriting is tight, howling and hypnotic. The sound is classic, yet refreshingly new.

                                                                                                "It's a different album," says drummer and primary recording engineer Cody Tarbell. "But we never have wanted to find a particular sound or any one thing and be attached to it permanently. A big part of our records is experimenting." The Visalia, CA band -- Daniel Rice (vocals, guitar), David Kent (guitar), Hayden Doyel (bass), and Cody Tarbell (drums) -- has recorded all of their albums on reel-to-reel at Tarbell's home studio in a cornfield. This affords them the time to experiment getting sounds, while maintaining focus on the most important notion that performance is key. As with previous albums, recording was pretty immediate, tracked between January 15th and the beginning of February 2016 to 16-track tape and mixed to 2-track tape.

                                                                                                Equally as ambitious as the band's self-sufficient production is the sprawling lyrical theme to the album. Thematically picking up where the Slow Season's previous full length Mountains left off, Westing tackles some heady issues.

                                                                                                "Westing follows a loose narrative about our nation's loss of innocence as it explores its frontiers," vocalist Daniel Rice explains. "Re-contextualized in a story about an unnamed protagonist faced with choosing between different ideological allegiances and his own social identity." From song to song, the album follows what Rice explains as, "the unholy trinity of greed+power+violence, the injustice wrought from this, persisting in willful ignorance, and reaping what is sown." A deep conceptual arc, for sure, and one that adds further weight to the Slow Season's intensity.

                                                                                                Album opener "Y'Wanna" erupts from the speakers as if the band couldn't even wait for the tape to start recording. it's a full-throttle rocker reminiscent of Zep's "Immigrant Song" with sly reference to "Four Sticks", all groove and pummel. "Flag" keeps things rolling along with its bouncing, stop-n-go guitar riff. The 6/8-time blues sway of "The Jackal" echoes early Sabbath malefic boogie, while "Saurekonig" is a cavernous and volcanic mass driven by huge drums, ringing slide guitar and ominous drone. "Damascus" is a rollicking anthem driven by Tarbell's syncopated hi-hat/snare interplay and Rice's explosive wail proving just how much of a dynamic powerhouse Slow Season has become. Throughout, Westing is a smart and snarling rocker that sounds like rock 'n' roll records should: massive, infectious and inviting repeat listens.

                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                01. Y'Wanna
                                                                                                02. Flag
                                                                                                03. Big City Livin'
                                                                                                04. The Jackal
                                                                                                05. Saurekonig
                                                                                                06. Damascus (STREAM)
                                                                                                07. Miranda
                                                                                                08. Manifest
                                                                                                09. Rainmaker

                                                                                                Salems Pot

                                                                                                Pronounce This!

                                                                                                  “Don't try to fight it,” the band’s motto implores, “Salems Pot has come to destroy your mind.” It’s the same kind of winking tease employed by low budget horror films of the 70s-80s that essentially dared audiences to experience what they knew they wanted, but couldn’t possibly expect.
                                                                                                  Likewise, the new album by mysterious Swedish quintet Salem’s Pot delivers truly gritty and captivating heavy rock in high contrast technicolor: a sonic equivalent of The Last House On The Left, El Topo and Blood Feast. Similar to the way such films made up for their lack of flashy, expensive effects with dim lighting and implied violence, a hallucinogenic sense of true evil lurks in the dark corners of Salem’s Pot’s sound. Lest we forget, the band’s name itself is a pun on Stephen King’s stark, modernized vampire masterpiece.

                                                                                                  Where previous Salems Pot releases honed doom riffs to perfection, Pronounce This! sees the band expanding its horizons to the far corners of imagination. It’s a hazy fever dream of dark, thrilling excess. It’s equal parts of The Cramps’ Psychedelic Jungle, Pentagram’s Relentless, Roky Erickson’s The Evil One and The Stooges Raw Power, as much heirs to Deep Purple as Dead Moon… metal, garage punk, acid rock and a belladonna trip gone wrong. It’s not heavy metal, this is a mutant monster that cannot be tamed.

                                                                                                  And, perhaps as a continuation of the band’s fascination with sinful lore, Salem’s Pot never identifies its band members individually — they’re all completely anonymous without so much as a stagename. One of the biggest upgrades since the band’s 2014 RidingEasy album …Lurar ut dig pa prarien is the addition of second guitar, with the previous drummer giving up the throne for the strap and a new unnamed mystery man pounding the kit. Now, the band is freed to expand beyond the riff and get truly freaky. And with each new release, the vocals are way more snarling punk than the doom histrionics of their peers.

                                                                                                  Album opener “Tranny Takes a Trip” kicks off with a humming modular synth drone and twin guitar throb lulling beneath a cascading haze of gurgling keyboard-through-delay-loop sounds before settling in to a stomping anthem replete with NWOBHM harmonized guitar leads. The album’s tone clearly set for the shadiest recesses of our minds, “Just For Kicks” swaggers in on a phaser-drenched single note guitar line that sets up a demented blues as the tuneful, yelping vocals expound on a penchant for chemical excess with direct honesty. A shortened edit of “The Vampire Strikes Back” was released as a single in late 2015, shorn down to the hook-laden rocker at the seven-and-a-half minute song’s core. But here you get the track’s full, sprawling glory as it staggers through a hazy, murderous leitmotif with noir-ish deliberation. “Coal Mind” is the album centerpiece at nearly 13 minutes of Hawkwind on a bad trip, drifting from space rock with an exemplary “bit of finger” to throbbing, hypnotic pulse that eventually ruptures with monolithic drop-tuned wall of guitar. “So Gone, So Dead” is a moment of respite giving nod to Gram Parsons’ lysergic western swing with funereal weight. “Desire” closes the album with epic grandeur reminiscent of Roky Erickson’s bleak murder ballad “Burn The Flames” supercharged with squealing and writhing guitars and thunderous drums.

                                                                                                  "They used to wake up on your couch, not wanting to wake up,” the band’s brief manifesto explains. “Desperately clinging to sin, degradation, murder and substance abuse. With nothing left inside they made an attempt to tell someone about it, and the dead chuckled merrily: ‘You're not alone.’”

                                                                                                  After bursting to the American heavy rock forefront with their 2014 debut album, Sateen, Cincinnati four-piece Electric Citizen are ready for a Higher Time. Their second album for RidingEasy, it is a breakout moment for the band as a whole and for vocalist Laura Dolan, who stands tall in the spotlight throughout “Evil,” “Misery Keeper” and the rest of Higher Time, rising to the occasion of a fuller, bigger sound and meeting the memorable riffing of husband/guitarist Ross Dolan head on with already-stuck-in-your-head hooks and a fiery, passionate delivery.

                                                                                                  Like its predecessor, Higher Time was recorded at The Diamonds studio in Cincinnati by Brian Olive (The Greenhornes, Dan Auerbach, Dr. John, etc.), and in search of an even more expansive feel, Laura, Ross and Brian traveled to mix the album alongside Black Keys engineer Collin Dupuis at Easy Eye in Nashville, TN. The results speak for themselves. In Laura’s performance and in the multi-faceted approach of Ross alongside bassist Randy Proctor and drummer Nate Wagner, Electric Citizen branch out with stage-born assurance across a collection of definitive rock ‘n’ roll. It is a bold, complete sound that sacrifices nothing of the band’s on-stage energy and clearly demonstrates that while their progression has been quick, it’s been hard won the traditional way: They worked their collective ass off.

                                                                                                  “We chose producer Brian Olive because he's an excellent musician with a great ear for rock ‘n’ roll, and a good friend that we trust,” notes Laura. The dividends of that trust can be heard in “Ghost of Me,” the rolling “Natural Law” or “Devils in the Passing Time,” as Electric Citizen brazenly refuse to be pigeonholed and craft a style that, like every stage they step onto, is completely their own.

                                                                                                  Electric Citizen spread their name far and wide on tours with Fu Manchu, Wolfmother, Budos Band and Pentagram for Sateen. Look for them to support Higher Time on the road in North America and Europe throughout 2016 and beyond.

                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                  1. Evil 03:33
                                                                                                  2. Social Phobia
                                                                                                  3. Misery Keeper 03:58
                                                                                                  4. Devils In Passing Time
                                                                                                  5. Golden Mean 04:03
                                                                                                  6. Higher Time
                                                                                                  7. Ghost Of Me
                                                                                                  8. Natural Law
                                                                                                  9. Crux
                                                                                                  10. Two Hearted Woman

                                                                                                  Various Artists

                                                                                                  Brown Acid: The Second Trip

                                                                                                    Some of the best thrills of the Internet music revolution is the ability to find extremely rare music with great ease. But even with such vast archives to draw from, quite a lot of great songs have gone undiscovered for nearly half a century — particularly in genres that lacked hifalutin arty pretense. Previously, only the most extremely dedicated and passionate record collectors had the stamina and prowess to hunt down long forgotten wonders in dusty record bins – often hoarding them in private collections, or selling at ridiculous collector’s prices. Legendary compilations like Nuggets, Pebbles, ad nauseum, have exhausted the mines of early garage rock and proto-punk, keeping alive a large cross-section of underground ephemera. However, few have delved into and expertly archived the wealth of proto-metal, pre-stoner rock tracks collected on Brown Acid: The Second Trip.

                                                                                                    Lance Barresi, co-owner of L.A./Chicago retailer Permanent Records has shown incredible persistence in tracking down a stellar collection of rare singles from the 60s and 70s for the growing compilation series. Partnered with Daniel Hall of RidingEasy Records, the two have assembled a selection of songs that’s hard to believe have remained unheard for so long. “I essentially go through hell and high water just to find these records,” Barresi says. “Once I find a record worthy of tracking, I begin the (sometimes) extremely arduous process of contacting the band members and encouraging them to take part. Daniel and I agree that licensing all the tracks we’re using for Brown Acid is best for everyone involved,” rather than simply bootlegging the tracks. When all of the bands and labels haven’t existed for 30-40 years or more, tracking down the creators gives all of these tunes a real second chance at success.

                                                                                                    “There’s a long list of songs that we’d love to include,” Barresi says. “But we just can’t track the bands down. I like the idea that Brown Acid is getting so much attention, so people might reach out to us.”

                                                                                                    One song on The Second Trip actually never even saw light of day, until now. “Bell Park Loon” by Spiny Norman – sounding like Jethro Tull on more acid and heavier cider – languished in a collector’s archives, unreleased for 38 years until Barresi and Hall arranged to license some of the collector’s goldmine.

                                                                                                    Brown Acid: The Second Trip opens with the squealing guitar harmonies and Sabbath plod of Ash‘s “Midnight Wish.” Sweet Crystal‘s “Warlords” is a fuzzy and fierce Deep Purple/Arthur Brown inspired organ-led anthem. Raving Maniac‘s ‘Rock and Roll Man” is a tight and brash glam-meets-metal tune proving the true potential of a genre later squandered on Sunset Strip poodleheads. “Silence of the Morning” by Glass Sun serves grungy psych while the Volt Rush Band merges MC5 frantic energy with razor-sharp guitar leads. And, Iron Knowledge‘s aptly titled “Show Stopper” features a breakbeat and incredibly infectious detuned bass warble motif that DJs would kill for – had anyone been able to find the tune back in the day. Throughout, The Second Trip is yet another wall-to-wall set of blazing tracks that feels like you’ve uncovered a holy grail. And, in a way, you have.

                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                    1. ASH -MIDNIGHT WITCH
                                                                                                    2. SWEET CRYSTAL - WARLORDS
                                                                                                    3. RAVING MANIAC - ROCK N ROLL MAN
                                                                                                    4. CROSSFIELD - TAKE IT!
                                                                                                    5. SPINY NORMAN - BELL PARK LOON
                                                                                                    6. GLASS SUN - SILENCE OF THE MORNING
                                                                                                    7. VOLT RUSH BAND - LOVE TO YOU
                                                                                                    8. BUCK - LONG HOT HIGHWAY
                                                                                                    9. IRON KNOWLEDGE - SHOW STOPPER
                                                                                                    10. SONNY HUGG - DAYBREAK

                                                                                                    Mondo Drag

                                                                                                    The Occultation Of Light

                                                                                                      It’s no minor thing to pack up and leave your home. Heavy psych mavens Mondo Drag relocated from Iowa to Oakland, California, after recording their self-titled second album (released on RidingEasy in 2015), and the move is central to understanding the progressive turn that their third record, The Occultation of Light, represents.

                                                                                                      “Each of our albums has directional changes in songwriting and this third chapter is no exception,” says vocalist/keyboardist John Gamino. “Since moving to Oakland, we’ve been privy to the large amount of music that flows through a major cultural center. We’ve seen legendary acts like Magma, King Crimson, Goblin, and Yes. We are always trying to expand our sonic range and we definitely explore some new areas on the new album that we’ve not been to before.”

                                                                                                      Most of The Occultation of Light was recorded live, tracked and mixed on analog tape by Phil Manley (Trans Am, The Fucking Champs) at El Studio in San Francisco. Mondo Drag had just come off the road after a month out with labelmates Electric Citizen and Slow Season, and their stage-honed, hard-won chemistry bleeds into every second of the record. Songs are warm, psychedelic and grooving, but have a poise born out of classic prog as well. And as much as their new home is a factor, that just wouldn’t be possible without the road time.

                                                                                                      “Since moving to Oakland in Spring ’13, we’ve been developing and playing out the material that now comprises The Occultation of Light in San Francisco and Oakland,” Gamino explains.

                                                                                                      Born out of a tumultuous history of varied lineups and geography since the release of their 2010 debut, New Rituals, Mondo Drag realize a defining moment with their third offering that builds on their past accomplishments even as it embarks boldly on new era for the band. Tour plans for 2016 are forthcoming.

                                                                                                      Mondo Drag is John Gamino (vocals/keys), Nolan Girard (guitar/synth), Jake Sheley (guitar), Andrew O’Neil (bass) and Ventura Garcia (drums).

                                                                                                      For fans of MK II Era Deep Purple, Uriah Heap – Demons & Wizards……etc…

                                                                                                      Slow Season

                                                                                                      Slow Season

                                                                                                        Central California quartet Slow Season have a revamped version of their 2012 self-titled debut album to be released on RidingEasy Records.

                                                                                                        The band's sound effortlessly nods to greats of the 60s-70s like Led Zeppelin, The Who, Black Sabbath, et al, without sounding like a caricature. Rather, as one can immediately hear, this is hypnotic, heavy, and howling rock 'n' roll that defies both musical and temporal categorization.

                                                                                                        The Visalia, CA band - Daniel Rice (vocals, guitar), David Kent (guitar), Hayden Doyel (bass), and Cody Tarbell (drums) - scale new heights, while recognising where it all began. Having recorded both of their albums live on reel-to-reel at Tarbell's home studio, the band eschews the digital trappings of music today to give their analog sound its crackling, kinetic energy.

                                                                                                        "Working with the limitations of tape really pushed us to play our best," Rice says. "You have to prioritize your ideas. You can't layer too much on there. You also have to nail the takes. You don't get to go back and cut 'n' paste. You have to feel it when you're playing it. When everything comes together, it really shines because we're all playing together on tape."

                                                                                                        Slow Season

                                                                                                        Supernaut / One Way Or Another

                                                                                                          Black Sabbath cover versions have to be amazing, as the originals are really hard to better…or even equal. Well shoot us down if Slow Season don’t ramp it up and drop a killer, absolutely tight and wild version of Supernaut… YEAH!!

                                                                                                          This Limited edition 7” has an original “One Way of Another” on the flip..and get the bell bottoms out, we’re going loonsome for this Zep-tastic wig out… Riding Easy for President!!

                                                                                                          Danava

                                                                                                          Hemisphere Of Shadows

                                                                                                            To Complete the holy trinity of DANAVA LPs, Danava Hemisphere of Shadows… Limited coloured vinyl first (re)pressing on Riding Easy. Housed in a thick 24 pt Reverse Board jacket and pressed by RTI. This has been recut and is a brand new much louder pressing than the previous.

                                                                                                            One of the early signings that helped put Kemado Records, this is their third LP released in 2011. From their initial appearance on Kemado's famed Invaders comp, Danava turned heads with a bombastic 70's sound that melded blazing psych-metal with glam-rock flair. Upon the release of the band's self-titled debut EP in 2006, Pitchfork hailed Danava as true leaders, calling them "the sole working owners of this sound, an almost glam-rock, Hawkwind thing" and Guitar World lauded their "chaotic psych-metal brew."

                                                                                                            " …. the latest album from Danava, the sound evokes the days of Deep Purple's Fireball and Machine Head, but who has been paying attention to their most recent albums? Not including Deep Purple fanatics, there isn't much to speak of in terms a fan base beyond their classic albums…. Hemisphere of Shadows evokes the early days of heavy metal and prog rock, with the creativity of new musicians and the songs often push the boundaries of "craziness" in terms of what is produced. Songs like "The Last Goodbye" with its epic mind-shattering organ solo near the end of the song, as well as the synth sounds of "Dying Into Light" don't remind me of anything else that happened in 1970's heavy metal/rock. ….." 8/10 Metal Archive.

                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                            1 Shoot Straight With A Crooked Gun
                                                                                                            2 White Nights Of Murder
                                                                                                            3 The Last Goodbye
                                                                                                            4 I Am The Skull
                                                                                                            5 Riding Hood
                                                                                                            6 The Illusion Crawls
                                                                                                            7 Hemisphere Of Shadows
                                                                                                            8 Dying Into Light

                                                                                                            “We like things on a grand scale,” says Spelljammer bassist/vocalist Niklas Olsson. That’s a bit of an understatement considering the Stockholm, Sweden trio’s penchant for massive, slow-burning sludge riffs intercut with dramatic melodic interludes. There’s the pummeling heft of detuned guitars rumbling across the rugged expanse of unwieldy drums counterbalanced with moments of Master of Reality-era Sabbath’s introspective acoustic breaks and Pink Floyd’s Meddle-era psychedelia. These extreme shifts in dynamic give the band’s third album a sense of epic depth unlike most of Spelljammer’s peers.

                                                                                                            “The vastness of everything is something that I seem to think about a lot,” Olsson says, “and I guess that shows in the lyrics.” Some of Ancient of Days’ words were inspired by the epic poem Aniara by Swedish author and Nobel laureate Harry Martinson in which a spaceship leaving an uninhabitable Earth is hurtled off course, sending its thousands of passengers on a steady course in the wrong direction and there is nothing they can do about it. They will all slowly die as the ship continues from the solar system, forever into nothingness. This type of apocalyptic woe permeates throughout the 5-song, 40-minute album in perfect bond with the vastness of the music.

                                                                                                            Ancient of Days is not just the band’s third release, but in many ways, a rebirth. It’s Spelljammer’s first recording as a trio — with Olsson taking over bass duties and new drummer Jonatan Rimsbo battering the skins — and the culmination of a progressive move toward a heavier, doom-laden sound, away from the desert rock leanings of their 2010 debut Inches From the Sun. Vol II saw the band spreading out into darker territories. After writing sessions fell apart in 2013 for a followup to Vol II (reissued in early 2015 by RidingEasy Records) Olsson and guitarist Robert Sorling scrapped nearly everything following the departure of half of the band. The two began to build from the ground up as a duo with new ideas that resulted in the invigorated Ancient of Days. It’s the band’s most focused and deliberate in both its complexities and simplicities.

                                                                                                            “Having recorded the previous two albums in a more patchwork kind of way,” Olsson says, “we were very set on going into one studio and doing the entire thing.” In so doing, they banged it all out over a weekend in January 2015 at Ingrid Studio in Stockholm, with engineer Christoffer Zakrisson at the helm. Here, syrupy guitars ooze from the speakers, the drums sound like they’re perched atop a giant barge and howling vocals float throughout the proceedings. Ancient of Days very effectively embodies the boundless, otherworldly essence of its inspiration.

                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                            Meadow
                                                                                                            Laelia
                                                                                                            From Slumber
                                                                                                            The Pathfinder
                                                                                                            Borlung

                                                                                                            Salems Pot

                                                                                                            Sweeden

                                                                                                              *REPRESS* 200 COPIES ONLY

                                                                                                              These are jackets and labels from the first pressing they found while cleaning out the garage. 35 minutes plus, two tracks… oh my, this is for fans of Electric Wizard, Rise Above, Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats. Dooooom from Scandinavia, pressed onto wax by a label in California… 

                                                                                                              Mondo Drag

                                                                                                              Mondo Drag

                                                                                                                The creatures known as Mondo Drag originally hailed from deep along the banks of the wild Mississippi River where they created ominous, spiritual, savage psychedelic revival sounds. Under the spiritual guidance of the forefathers of heavy psych, prog, and proto-metal, Mondo Drag has created an amalgamation of sounds the likes of which have not been heard for decades. The band’s unique sound, and rare cohesion probably stems from the fact that core members John Gamino (keyboards, vocals), Nolan Girard, (guitar, synth) and Jake Sheley (guitar) grew up together and have been playing music with each other for 15 years.

                                                                                                                Now settled in Oakland, CA the ensemble continues to create cosmically proportioned, churning jams evocative of a rainbow of inspirations such as Blue Cheer, Black Sabbath, Can, Atomic Rooster, Hawkwind, Budgie, Uriah Heep, Deep Purple, Italian prog, Krautrock in general, and heavy space-outs.

                                                                                                                Blackout

                                                                                                                Blackout

                                                                                                                  This March Brooklyn’s self-proclaimed “pillars of rock and roll righteousness” will release their new, self-titled album through Los Angeles’ equally badass record label RidingEasy Records. Blackout was initially formed by guitar player/vocalist Christian Gordy and drummer Taryn Waldman at Gordy’s July 4th cookout in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York back in 2011. Waldman, a former Hooter's waitress turned big time commercial film editor and Gordy; a one-legged bartender/artist/BBQ enthusiast were (by their own admission) something of an oddball couple for NY's rigid metal scene. Yet with no direction and zero discussion both connected instantly and instinctively began banging out massive caveman jams against a patriotic backdrop of food, alcohol and the stars and stripes.

                                                                                                                  In fact as far as names go, choosing Blackout – suggesting a power crash, sudden and temporary loss of consciousness or a mob hit on an entire family – was a total no brainer. In the months that followed the pair recruited close friend Justin Sherrell on bass duties, and as things began to get louder and considerably heavier in November 2012 the trio entered Vacation Island Studio with engineer and producer Rob Laakso (Diamond Nights, Swirlies, Kurt Vile) to record their debut release We Are Here. Choosing to self-release the album on vinyl in early 2013 it garnered plenty of acclaim from some of the hottest blogs du jour and was praised for its Melvins-esque ferocity and pounding Sleep-like groves. “Blackout get it right, hammering jam after jam, pound after pound. The smoky swirls buzz with electric accusations and shock-therapy repressions.” (Heavy Planet)

                                                                                                                  Following an extensive gigging regime in, around and way beyond New York’s city limits with acts like Acid King, Weedeater and Trouble the band took to the studio once again in the summer of 2013 to record a body of new songs. Songs that strictly worked off the riffs spontaneously summoned during practice sessions where old material was revived, ideas hashed out and sounds reworked into the record you will soon hear in full. Songs that make up Blackout, the band’s eagerly awaited follow up and soon to be released revelation on RidingEasy Records.

                                                                                                                  Danava

                                                                                                                  Danava

                                                                                                                    High Voltage Rock N Roll, Fresh of the US run with Uncle Acid available for the first time on Double LP. Supercharged psychedelic space rock that could have been made in the 70s available for the first time on Double LP. When this first came out Pitchfork hailed Danava as true leaders, calling them “the sole working owners of this sound, an almost glam-rock, Hawkwind thing” and Guitar World lauded their “chaotic psych-metal brew.”

                                                                                                                    This is rock n roll to the core and definitely not your parents kind of party.

                                                                                                                    RIYL: Earthless, Ted Nugent, Yes, Kyuss, Red Fang, Nebula, Uncle Acid and The Deadbeats

                                                                                                                    The Picturebooks

                                                                                                                    Imaginary Horse

                                                                                                                      On their new release, Imaginary Horse. the German duo kick out thumping, muscular riffs. At their core, the duo takes cues from the blues-based sledgehammering of Scott Asheton. But then, on the even nastier cuts like "Your kisses burn like fire," the band gets grimey and wallows in low, rumbling reverberations that would make any Amphetamine Reptile band proud. This is vicious, modern rock and roll. Like Royal Blood if they recorded for Am Rep in 1989. Heavy two piece rock action!


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