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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

    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. 


      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. 

        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.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Coloured LP Info: Limited colour vinyl on the first pressing.

          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.”

            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…

                FORMAT INFORMATION

                Coloured LP Info: Limited green vinyl edition.

                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. 

                  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).

                    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.

                        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

                          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.

                            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.”

                              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.

                                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.”


                                  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. 

                                  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).

                                  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.

                                  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.

                                  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.

                                  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.

                                      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 decade, 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 of Brown Acid: The First Trip.

                                      Lance Barresi, co-owner of L.A.-cum-Chicago shop Permanent Records has shown incredible persistence in tracking down a stellar collection of rare singles from the 60s and 70s for the 11-track compilation. 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.

                                      “ All of (these songs) could've been huge given the right circumstances,” says Barresi. “But for one reason or another most of these songs fell flat and were forgotten. However, time has been kind in my opinion and I think these songs are as good now or better than they ever were."
                                      Brown Acid: The First Trip opens with the slithering buzzsaw guitars and hard-rock howl of Zeke’s’ “Box”, a monster that gives Blue Cheer a run for their leaden blues. Snow sways into “Sunflower” with a touch of Steppenwolf’s swagger and wind-in-their-hair wildness. Elsewhere, Zebra proves they were “Wasted” with a soul-inflected groove, while Bob Goodsite leans in on his wah-wah and phaser pedals, determined to out-Hendrix Jimi himself on “Faze.” Raw Meat’s “Stand By Girl” serves up a fierce, stomping riff intercut with Iron Butterfly style operatics. Bacchus kicks out a hostile sounding boogie, demanding to “Carry My Load.” Josefus caps it all off nicely with a hooky power-pop meets Bob Seger System meets Lollipop Shoppe anthem with the undeniably catchy chorus, “hard luck — keep truckin’!”

                                      It’s a solid set of unknown hits you can’t believe failed to connect back in their heyday due to various unfortunate circumstances. But now in 2015, Brown Acid: The First Trip gives these long-lost gems their well deserved moment to shine.

                                      “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.

                                      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… 

                                        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

                                          FORMAT INFORMATION

                                          Ltd LP Info: Limited indie stores only red vinyl.

                                          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.

                                          Formed just over a year ago by guitarist Ross Dolan, vocalist Laura Dolan, Nick Vogelpohl (bass) and Nate Wagner (drums) Electric Citizen have had a busy year turning heads and ears onto their dark and esoteric style of haunting and unhallowed ’60s West Coast rock, and decidedly British-influenced heavy psychedelia.

                                          Like records by similarly late 60s/early ’70s-possessed anti-modernists Blood Ceremony, Wolf People and Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, over nine tracks Sateen provides a blueprint for long term appreciation. Recorded and produced by fellow Ohioan and local stalwart Brian Olive (The Greenhornes, Soledad Brothers) the album draws on sounds synonymous with the roots of early ’70s proto-metal from groups such as Sir Lord Baltimore, Pentagram, Cream and the daemonic spirit of Amon Düül. Not to mention the comparisons it draws with the rock ‘n’ roll ceremony of forgotten acts like Frumpy and Shocking Blue when held up against the spellbinding light of high priestess Laura Dolan’s enigmatic voice and live presence.

                                          From the cloudy and mystical swirl of ‘Hawk Nightingale’ to the shades of folk metal on ‘Shallow Water’, Electric Citizen pitch scholarly interpretations of the old guard in new and electrifying ways and not always from the vaults of forgotten masters. Take new single ‘Light Years Beyond’ with it’s swirling and ferocious concoction of guitars and drums or ‘Magnetic Man’ with its unabashed nod to Heart and classic Black Sabbath. Just a handful of many songs here that showcases just how good the band is at dropping sonic needles into the grooves of records that all serious rock ’n’ roll lovers hold dear.

                                          After performing recent shows with Dead Meadow, Spirit Caravan and The Sword the band are currently on the road as official support to stoner rock Gods Fu Manchu on their North American tour.

 ‘Light Years Beyond’ is released on 20 May 2014 and paves the way for Sateen which will be officially released via RidingEasy Records on 1 July 2014.
 The artwork for the album has been created by acclaimed artist Neil Krug who has previously worked with The Horrors, Lana Del Ray and Boards Of Canada). This is the 2014 album by ELECTRIC CITIZEN. Taking its name from a song by the legendary Edgar Broughton Band, this outfit is the brainchild of guitarist Ross Dolan, enigmatic vocalist Laura Dolan, Nick Vogelpohl (bass) and Nate Wagner (drums). The music is powerful hardrock, with a '70s retro sound and influences from late '60s psych rock. Fans of Satan's Satyrs / Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats take note, this ones for you!

                                          “Electric Citizen have barely been together a year and this gnarly cut [‘Burning In Hell’] melds 60s organ-stoked psychedelia with a fuzzed up 70s stomp. Meanwhile singer Laura Dolan’s witchily layered vocals set Electric Citizen apart from other retro-revivalists.” VICE Noisey

                                          “They take cultish cues from European acts like The Devil’s Blood and Mansion, but strip away the religious iconography to leave behind an earthy psychedelic swirl. The retro-style production, especially one so ably done, is a rarity among American acts, who usually bring such influences to bear with a modern feel, but Electric Citizen sound like old pros on their first outing.” The Obelisk

                                          This is the 2014 album by ELECTRIC CITIZEN. Taking its name from a song by the legendary Edgar Broughton Band, this outfit is the brainchild of guitarist Ross Dolan, enigmatic vocalist Laura Dolan, Nick Vogelpohl (bass) and Nate Wagner (drums). The music is powerful hardrock, with a '70s retro sound and influences from late '60s psych rock. Fans of Satan's Satyrs / Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats take note, this ones for you!

                                          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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