Thursday, January 31, 2013


This is the debut (!!! ) album of New Zealand 4 piece Sludge/Doom band SHALLOW GRAVE (release date Feb. 4th 2013). It consists of 6 songs and has a total playing time of somewhat more than 55 minutes.

The band’s take on the genre goes slightly into an ambient, post metal direction. Slightly – that means in addition to getting crushed by relentless heavy sludge riffs, a creepy spine-chilling horror will claw at your poor soul.

The opener “Devil’s Harvest” introduces the album very well, and gives a good impression of what to expect. The last song “City of the Dead” is with a length of 15:37 minutes the longest on the album and definitely one of the highlights. My favorite is “To Unfathomable Depth” with a slow and heavy start, a lot of distortion and a killer riff, but all six songs are practically qualified for being a favorite.

Perfectly written and arranged, all songs develop an excellent dramatic zip of their own. There’s a haunting eerie undertone throughout. While the few quiet but brooding and menacing passages invoke the evil, haunting hypnotizing pounding rhythms lead you inexorably into destruction. The heavy sludge riffs and the vocals, that somehow sound like from beyond of everything, tear you into pieces.
Images of tortured souls, chaos, despair and hell itself like paintings from Hieronymous Bosch conquer your mind.

This is an entirely impressing debut album with an already distinctive style of killing heavy Sludge. I definitely recommend you check it out.

words by Ulla Roschat

... into an abrasive torment : SLOTH HERDER "Abandon Pop Sensibility"

Obviously they are not the first underground band from Maryland that doesn't play Doom/Heavy Rock but this is the 1st coming out of this state, more usually known for bluesier more rockin' sounds, from a (very) different genre featured in here !!! And damn, they're pretty good in what they do : an uncompromised mix of crusty HC/Grind with Black Metal and  Sludge hints !!!

While being slightly muddy, the rather long instrumental introduction sounds clearly like the cleanest part of this record with its piercing and sludgey post-HC mood, no doubt the sickest is to come... and indeed, violence raises gradually and radically in intensity with "Cowards of the New Age" and then turns into a chaotic outburst until the end... but not only , hehehe ! there's a good proportion of dark, resonant sounds that present real compositional skills and this makes it catchy in my opinion.

"Spiritual Aim" and "Bleached" are the roughest interpretations that legitimate the Grind label, but not the kind of noise stuff with very short songs, minimalistic structures and variation in the tempos, more the loud and tortured HC/Crust  vein which has absolutely nothing crippling at all, on the contrary, it's cool to listen sometimes that kind of brutal stuff and if it's delivered with a harsh blackened sound, that's even better...

The highlight of the EP is "Relapse/Reward", the change between the  slow and  sludgey riffs of the first part with throaty vocals and then the fast northern blast-beats which follow, very aggressive and malignant, is bombastic and it even ends with a twisted thrashy riffing that could  remind early Voivod ... tasty !!!

"Dug Up,  which is the 6th and last,  is another song that clocks at a bit more than 3 minutes (the whole EP lasts 15 mns), following a churning monolith of riff, there's here certainly the blackest with everything full of anger, save the mid-part with a bleak atmosphere - again welcome in such painful fury.

Sure SLOTH HERDER is before all for people who like their stuff straight, raw and brutal with a special filthy and somewhat misanthropic blackened touch but  the songs are diverse, blending lots of styles with great hard-hitting riffs, and  an effective way of making dynamic shift that always keep the listener interested and should help them to find fans beyond the grind/Hc and Black Metal spheres with this ripping "Abandon Pop Sensibility".

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Death is what you make it : UTAH – ‘Utah’

Sludge imbued psych-rock is the name of the game for Athens, Georgia’s Utah. With a slight lineup change and a shift from the two-piece drum and guitar juggernaut that recorded the ‘Here They Come’ EP to a more traditional four-piece set-up for the release of their self-titled, full-length debut, Utah has surpassed their initial offering with a collection of tunes that are stronger, heavier, and laced with a considerable amount of psychedelia and downtrodden hypnotism. The closest point of reference for Utah’s brand of sludge rock can be traced back to the now defunct, ill-fated noise merchants Karp, though Utah embrace an overall sound more in tune with rock and blues rather than the 90’s noise fueled metal of ‘Mustaches Wild’ or ‘Suplex’.

Two of the defining characteristics to be found among the collection of nine tracks that comprise ‘Utah’ are the variety of tempo changes amongst the songs and the gritty, rough-hewn tone that permeates each and every track of the album. The album opener and a debut EP carryover, “Bisontennial”, and the following track, “Chickamauga”, are both up-tempo rockers with no shortage of twists and turns. “Bisontennial”—at times the most Karp-like track of the album—stands out with its sporadic squeals of feedback and drowsy, stoned lead guitar. Whereas “Bisontennial” hits the pipe and delves straight into stoner-metal territory, “Chickamauga” goes for the blotter and ultimately devolves into a lethargic, effects pedal freak-out. The combination of these two tracks is a great fucking way to open an album.

While Utah has a penchant for crafting catchy, up-tempo slabs of stoner-metal, they certainly aren’t confined to any formula. The third track, “Ambian”, is one of the most interesting tunes of the album mostly due to an extended, drowsily reverbed “Old West” flavored intro that gives way to a shambling, doom metal plod. “Help” finds the band further experimenting with doom and adding their own twisted atmospherics aided in large part by sinister sounding drums. “Kneecaps” marks the midpoint of the album and the tune is carried by the vocal melody of the chorus alone. While “Kneecaps” is far from sounding “soft” or “light”—though it does close out with a lone acoustic guitar—it comes across as one of the more heartfelt tracks of the album.

Utah’s self-titled debut requires repeated listens to fully appreciate the band’s subtle experimentations. The use of synthesizer at the onset of album-opener “Bisontennial” and for the “Who Are You?” flavored intro of album-closer “Black Sandwich” adds depth to an already solid album. Fans of Karp or contemporary stoner-metal acts such as Demonaut or Curse the Son should check this out.

Words: Steve Miller

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

... DEAD "Idiots"

"DEAD is the sound of two blokes with little man syndrome trying to punch above their weight and actually pulling it off. Their second LP is called Idiots and it’s really fucking good. If you don’t understand this you are an idiot.

While most of the media remain unaware DEAD exist they have sold out two pressings of their first  LP THUNDAAAAAH! on Wantage USA (Big Business/Red Fang etc.), Ricecooker (Malaysia) and their own label WeEmptyRooms through hard touring and killer live shows.

DEAD have barely stopped for a breath since their inception in late 2010; U.S.A, Japan, South East Asia, New Zealand and most of Australia have all copped extensive tours from DEAD whether they liked it or not.

When making their second album DEAD employed a simple tactic; Record each song first take, warts and all, keep overdubs to a minimum and mix it for the few people left who still listen to their music on a decent stereo.
The end result is a cohesive album from start to finish, true to their live sound and laced with a few...ah...‘‘experimental” bits."

Available on Digital, LP and a deluxe 180Gram/Screen Printed version.

... ROMERO "Take The Potion" released TODAY for FREE!

 ROMERO "Take The Potion" full length out today for FREE DOWNLOAD via Grindcore Karaoke! The 7 song / 42 minute album is available for download in multiple formats and includes a digital booklet w/ original artwork & lyrics.

If you enjoy your Stoner - diverse and racy, then check out ROMERO and grab it here:
The Deluxe CD version of the album is also out today and can be purchased here for the devilishly low price of $6.66:

The band just completed a successful Kickstarter campaign to fund the vinyl release of the album. The "Take The Potion" LP will be pressed on 3 different colors of Deluxe 150g vinyl and is limited to only 300 copies. 
Pre-order here:

Spark, puff + pass it on...TAKE THE POTION!

Monday, January 28, 2013

... Fueled by the essence of Doom : an Interview with STONE MAGNUM

One year after the release of its brillant debut album, STONE MAGNUM are actually working hard on new material... enough interesting to think about a new interview, added to some legitimate questions about the line-up changes, tricky but finally ultimately well-managed !
All conditions seem now up to put out another masterpiece of ultra Heavy Doom Metal filled with dirge pace of doom-laden riffs and raspy vocals.
An evocative fact is that this band is able to play such awesome festivals as Days of The Doomed and Stoner Hands of Doom, some European dates now would be cool ! European or not, you got to believe me that STONE MAGNUM deserve attention and respect from all authentic Doom Metal fans especially those with a METAL heart !!!
A couple of days ago, I was on line with Dean Tavernier (guitars), as we do enjoy to regularly, and proposed him to formalize a bit more this time our following chat... which he willingly agreed with a nice enthusiasm, authenticity and lots of cool things to tell about :  

Hey Dean… thanx for accepting this little chat to get news of Stone Magnum, it’s cool to have you again in the confessional of the Temple, hahaha ! What’s new at the moment , isn’t the winter too cold and doomy around Chicago ?

Thanks Stephane, it's good to talk with you about metal. You are correct, the winter has finally showed it's real face here around the Chicago region. It's been cold and we finally have some respectable snow, at least in my area.

As far as new happenings... Getting ready to do some studio work in a couple hours...going to lay down some bass tracks on some new records tonight, we are hoping to get something released in the we are working on that now.

 Cool, but let me come back if possible on last year's events... At about the same time of the album release you recruited Nick Hernandez on vocals, something to tell you the truth that I still have difficulties to understand when listening the quality of your vocals which will in my opinion always remain through this album, I know the fact of recruited a singer was mostly towards live playing considerations but shit that miserable tone of yours is so awesome… has it been something obvious to admit for you that need of changing the vocal duties, did you finally take pleasure with this new way of interpretation ?

Well, thanks for your kind words about my own vocal style. It was really a stretch for me to really make my voice effective in this band, at least in my opinion. So we started looking for someone who could do an effective job. We did try some other guys here and there...and the result we thought was that it didn't improve the sound enough, so I just continued.

When Nick came available and we got together and started working together and sharing ideas, it seemed really comfortable. Nick and I are alot alike in alot of ways...our viewpoints on certain things are aligned.

But I think he excels in more critical areas vocally than what I do and is similar in some respects. His style and sound is less Ozzy influenced obviously, his melodic voice is tonally better than mine, but I think he and I share that same raspy styled voices that aren't too far different from each other.

A few months after, you recorded a demo with the new line-up including 3 songs of the album, this was mainly to promotional purpose, to make people sure to know that Nick Hernandez was now the definitive singer of Stone Magnum, but this could have been a bit disconcerting for fans to get new version of songs that worked out really great on the album they were enjoying at about the same moment ?

About releasing the promo tracks for our fans to hear...I think at that time we were eager to present the band in the same format that people would be witnessing live
And there is no official physical's simply a download...and it's it seemed logical to put it out there to quell some of the curiosity about how different vocals would sound.
The other aspect, I always liked hearing alternate singers on songs...Candlemass has done this on multiple occasions.

This promo is great naturally and Nick’s vocals rule, a bit more incisive than yours while I think he took attention not to be too different from your original interpretation, what’s his background ? Does he maybe sing a bit differently on his songs now ? who wrote the lyrics for new songs ?

I think Nick didn't stray too far away from the original versions of the songs, but he did put his own stylizations on it too...

Nick has sang in a few bands in the past...and all of them have been vastly different than what we are doing in Stone Magnum
He was in Violent Wisdom singing in a thrash metal style..then he was in Dysphoria singing death metal...and most recently he was singing for Kommandant who are best described as black metal.So, what he's doing now in Stone Magnum is just another showcase of his abilities that maybe he didn't get to explore previously.
The lyrics for the new songs are a combination of Nick and Myslelf. We even actually sit down and write lyrics together on many of the new songs.

 Your number of fans has logically but considerably increased on fb, is that due to chilean pussies or did Nick almost have a kind of fan-base who now support S.M. ?

Ha ha...I don't judge the FB traffic as legitimate interest in the band. I think alot of people click the like button as a result of FB advertising promotions.
I see alot of very non metal people hitting the like button from countries that you don't normally think has a strong metal following. Maybe they do...but i think it's just FB promotional b.s.

I think our real fan base is still very small...and that is due to lack of actively promoting our band. We haven't toured, and we are not sending away hundreds of physical promotional packages and buying ad space in really only those who follow stone magnum are people who seek out their music in the underground.

Your right that's certainly a wrong indicator, some more concrete numbers would come from bandcamp then, what's the results from that ? is there a good proportions of download or do people listen a couple of songs on streaming and then go on something else ... ?

I think bandcamp is a good indicator as far as those downloads go. We've had over 2500 hits there.
But I think the total number of downloaders has been less than half of that
I'm not worried about those numbers...most of those numbers are kids just looking for free music anyway...and that is fine by me.

I'm more concerned with our name rising in the metal underground and within the genres that we are associated with.

At some point I remember you told me about a new re-recorded version of the album with Nick Hernandez re-recording all vocals, why didn’t this happen ? You didn’t totally forget this idea as I’ve just read in a recent interview of yours that you intend to include a few of those songs re-recorded on a the 2nd album, will those be the same as on the promo ?

We did intend on releasing album version with the new Vocalist...but that seems lazy on our part. We want to continue moving forward, so we've been concentrating on newer songs. But we do have plans on making some, not all, of the debut album tracks available on future releases

There was aso a reference to a possible EP... ?

Well, yes, it's something we've been trying to figure out. Possibly a long EP with 4 or 5 new songs, and 2 or 3 old songs, and possibly a cover.

Or, we also have the option of doing a full length with bonus tracks...we just haven't figured out which way to go as of yet. We do intend on making CD available on our next release

The latest song you composed for the debut album was a bit different, more “heaven and hell” oriented than older Sabbath and there’s another new song you sent me some weeks ago which was in the same mood, does it mean in a sense that the obscure period you were living in personally a couple of years ago is now behind you ?

Well, things have definatley moved in another direction for me. Alot of the struggles from previously have been overcome, but there are always obstacles waiting in line to take their place.

So it never this affects the writing and sound of the music remains to be seen. I think the music hasn't changed all that much since that last track was composed that didn't make it on the album.

I think the music is still identifiable as Stone Magnum...but I believe the music is a bit more uptempo at times, but I think our slower passages are slower and more punishing.

I was mainly thinking about the fact that you said that originally part of the songs you composed on the album weren't supposed to be for another band than Skullview but the moments you were living made the songs turn different, a lot doomier than your usual compositions ...

True indeed, that is where the doomier element came from initially. I'm actively writing songs all the time. Depending on the influences of that particular time that I'm writing, it kind of dictates if the stuff being written on that particular session will develop into Magnum tracks or would they be more fitting for something else....
So, I have my good days nad my bad days...and logically the bad days are more suited to write Magnum it really isn't any's just more conscious

What about next live gigs planed ? next Stoner hands of Doom ? Does it make a lot of change to just play guitar now, do you have a more relaxed approach ?!

We had some shows lined up for spring and summer, but strange occurrences caused these shows to end up not happening. So right now, the next live thing is SHOD in November. But we'll get something lined up for sure in spring and summer.

I don't think I have a more relaxed approach, which I would think would naturally happen since I've stopped doing vocals. I can really get into the songs more, more intense when I play, so it still has it's inate challenges.

Let's talk about a very different subject, you told me once that you don't like much Doom with female vocals in general, is there any exception to this and what does annoy you in them ?

So far, i haven't heard any female fronted doom bands that have blown me away. I don't especially haven't anything against them, it's just not my favorite vibe

So what did blow you away in 2012 from doom to death and thrash as usual ?

I think my favorite album from 2012 was Dawnbringer's "Into The Lair of The Sungod". It really is great traditional heavy metal to my ears
Also Nocturnal Torment "They Come At Night" is pulverizing, unrelenting death/thrash...technical, aggressive and does not let up.

Ok, I need to contradict myself on the female doom band...because Winhand's album was quite their singer a woman?

Yes ! ... You said you gonna record some bass tracks ? what's the name of the song you'll work on ?

Ben is coming to the studio tonight to record bass tracks on some new material. Hopefully we'll get a few songs done tonight. Some of the songs to work on are Lonely God, In Tongues They Whisper, Uncontained, From Time...To Eternity

Back to Windhand, very good album from 2012. I think the vocals remain somewhat background and is overidden by the heaviness and the cool riffs and atmosphere they create.

I have my own studio here at my home. I record our material, and i've recorded some albums from other bands here. The studio goes under the monicker of Bruised and Battered Studios...

And what about next album release, who are you going to work with and on which formats ?

Right now the plan is to release CD for the next release, and perhaps vinyl as well. Currently we are still working with RIP Records, so the assumption is that we will release the next release with RIP. If other opportunities present themselves, then we have something to think about.

I guess what I'm saying is that we are not shopping our product around. We are not a store...if someone is interested in what we do, they have many ways to be able to contact us. Things have a way of working themselves out if it is intended to be a certain way.

we have our few channels of letting people know what we are about and what we have, but we're not going to try to cram it down everyone's throats.

I'm proud to be a part of those channels, he :) well, there's maybe something special you'd like to talk about mate !?

You are a BIG channel for us Stephane, and we really do appreciate the support you've given Stone Magnum. The people that follow Temple Of Perdition are the type of people we welcome to support Stone Magnum.

We could sit and talk about Epicus Doomicus Metallicus for hours if you'd like, ha ha.

That's flattering thanx ! oh, one thing we still have to do is that common review, write while listening some new stuff at the same time, as planed

That's is the most special doom metal album I think there is, ha
and maybe one of the most special metal albums in general

But it's a bit late now and I'm pretty stoned once again :(

which is what makes it so great.

Oh sure, don't wanna make you too envious but that gig at Roadburn in 2011 playing all the album with original singer, this was huge !

You are feeling pretty good then it sounds. Perhaps you should put that on your player as you fall asleep tonight...the perfect soundtrack for the night.

You saw that? I do envy you...that would be an amazing event to see.

And about that common review...that is still in my will happen

I hope !

Hey Steph, I have to run and get started on the reording session here soon

Ok, i think this makes something pretty cool and informative, what do you think ?

Absolutely, this is the way I like to do an interview...interesting questions, and just a regular conversation.  

I think this is a good compromise and we don't have to hear my fucked-up accent , haha !

ha ha may think i have the fucked up accent brother..ha  

Thanx a lot for this good time, have fun recording noise ;)

Thanks again Stephane for the awesome chat and for your undying support for our band!


... BILIS SICARIO "Encuentro de Sutilezas"

BILIS SICARIO is a Mexican instrumental project influenced by the psychedelic Baja desert.
"The Baja desert... where deep inside another dimension, where in between the worlds of reality and infinity, where outside of the boundaries of your own imagination, the music will take over to guide you to ..."

With a very special Latin flavor, this 4 songs EP "Encuentro de Sutilezas" is a trippy journey of about 25 minutes that is highly recommended to fans of ORQUESTA DEL DESIERTO, BRANT BJORK and the Bros (think about "Saved By Magic" and "Somera sol") or  YAWNING MAN... At times, just like those great ambassadors of Desert Rock  do it so nicely, BILIS SICARIO prove that this style of music doesn't only mean burning rockin' stuff but also trippy refinement and sensibility !

It's a name your price affair, so listen this carefully... before donating a few bux ;)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

From beyond the mists of Niflheim: THE FLIGHT OF SLEIPNIR "Saga"

The psych-metal duo of Clayton Cushman and David Csicsely—better known as The Flight of Sleipnir—are about to unleash their fourth full-length album, ‘Saga’. Over the span of three full-lengths, a collection of rare EPs and a demo, and a three-way split with both Apostle of Solitude and Rituals of the Oak, The Flight of Sleipnir have meticulously crafted and honed a distinct and unique sound that effortlessly combines psychedelia, folk, doom, and traditional metal all of which is heavily influenced by Norse mythology. While the band’s discography is both solid and consistent, they have yet to top their debut, ‘Algiz + Berkanan’. At least, until now. ‘Saga’ is easily the band’s most varied and expansive release to date and makes a tremendous leap in terms of progression and atmosphere.

The appropriately titled “Prologue” kicks off ‘Saga’ with a rising tide of feedback before The Flight of Sleipnir unleash a two-and-a-half minute onslaught of heavy riffs that are centered around Cushman’s distinctive howl. This is The Flight of Sleipnir at their heaviest and catchiest. The song is ultimately balanced with the clean vocals of Csicsely who overall makes a greater vocal contribution than on previous releases and to great effect. The following two tracks, “Reaffirmation” and “Reverence”, perfectly complement each other and continues The Flight of Sleipnir’s trend of incorporating a vaster amount of acoustic instrumentation over the span of their releases. The main difference between the softer, melodic songs of ‘Essence of Nine’ and those found on ‘Saga’ is that the newer tunes are more memorable and they possess an ethereal beauty that surpasses most of the band’s previous material. “Reverence” is easily one of the album’s strongest tracks and is driven by an excellent vocal melody and Csicsely’s drumming before embracing a multi-layered, blissed-out guitar climax.

The majority of ‘Saga’ could not be mistaken for the work of any band other than The Flight of Sleipnir. Their signature sound is all over this release—particularly during the heavier tracks—as evidenced by songs such as “Harrowing Desperation”, “Judgment”, “Demise Carries with it a Song”, and “Hour of Cessation”. The Flight of Sleipnir have clearly carved out their niche on previous releases and now, on ‘Saga’, they are exploring textures and expanding their palette. While each song of the album is intrinsically engaging on its own, it is the slower, acoustic tracks in particular that really carries this album and separates it from its predecessors. “The Mountain”, for example, is perhaps the moodiest track ever composed by the band by relying heavily on a beautifully melancholic acoustic composition and clean vocals provided mainly by Cushman. The absence of drums simply adds to the haunting atmospherics and adds depth to the album. The tenth song of the album, “Remission”, finds the band crafting a concise, yet heartfelt instrumental track that is embellished with an emotive combination of steel and lead guitar. Whereas ‘Saga’ began in thunderous fashion with the “Prologue”, the closing “Epilogue” is primarily a moodier affair, but definitely isn’t lacking in heft, especially during the latter half of the tune as it closes out with a shoegaze inspired wailing wall of sound.

‘Saga’ is by far The Flight of Sleipnir’s longest work to date and it is majestic and epic in scope. Despite its hour run time there is not a wasted minute to be found on the band’s fourth full-length nor is there anything that could be considered a misstep. The duo has meticulously crafted a beautiful album that ups the ante in terms of overall atmosphere and song craft while leaving an indelible impression on the listener. Not to take away from The Flight of Sleipnir’s previous releases, but ‘Saga’ easily transcends the remainder of the band’s discography. This is 10-out-of-10 material and should be available February 15th through Eyes Like Snow.

Words: Steve Miller

Friday, January 25, 2013

... a rest with wandering souls : Interview with MARBLE CHARIOT

Yesterday I posted a review of Tombtone's 1st album, now I'm coming back to you with another French Doom metal band which I already presented a few weeks ago: MARBLE CHARIOT out from Bordeaux...
-In no particular order- Les girondins, Alain Juppé, Lalande Pommerol, le centre de recherche sur les mammifères marins, le chantier du cinéma du Pian Medoc où ma boîte vient de travailler pendant de longs mois and certainly more other hidden treasures... hahaha ! all this is tasty and breathes good vibes of more or less normal life, but will some slumberish Trad' Doom ever be the most ultimate experience to come out from this pretty important french town, often mocked for its coldness, despite a pretty agreable climate and environment nearby the south-west atlantic coast !!!??? 
That's a possible point of view with Marble Chariot's 1st EP "The Burden is so Heavy", a masterful debut with 3 songs of  Trad' Doom Metal, exclusive and relentless with crushing and ploding influences from the likes of St Vitus, Trouble, Reverend Bizarre...  This band is young and logically perfectible in several aspects (own identity, recording process/conditions...) but it's amazing how real they come across !  so, once again but even more than usual, I encourage you to discover their sound and support this HEAVY outfit !
Here's a nice little interview with Nicolas :

Hi guys, Marble Chariot is a name which sounds pretty original, I would even say kinda "Heavy METAL", very different from all those new bands in Wizard or Bong something... how did you came up with that heavy name ?

Indeed, your point is well taken. We wanted to clear away from the lexical field proposed by bands playing a bastard form of Stoner / Doom. The massive use of words like Witch, Bong, Grave, Mountain and so on is some kind of ridiculous and childish,although this was the case in the 80's with bands like Angel Witch, Axe Witch, Stormwitch, Witch Cross but this is another story, we are part of a long-term and not in an effort to reproduce more or less successful musical recipe that made the recognition of popular bands like Electric Wizard or Sleep. Regarding the Heavy Metal connotation the name of our group, you are once again right because, our roots come from this scene, the sum of adjective and a noun evocative allow the listeners to understand directly the universe of the band. The examples are numerous: Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Heavy Load, Diamond Head, Manilla Road, Pagan Altar, Saint Vitus, Count Raven, Witchfinder General, Angel Witch ... the list could be endless. awesome names for legendary names.

Am I wrong or the recording of the demo was all done live (except the vocals most certainly) ? Was it a question of time and money or your wish ?

We recorded all live instruments including voice. Aside from the guitars solos and some minor voice, we recorded in the same room for a short day. We wanted to capture the primal power of our music. The group with less than one year at the time of recording, it was out of the question to hide the flaws of our musical abilities due to our inexperience. The aim was to photograph a young band who was eager to unleash his crushing darkness.

A great part of the Stoner/Doom and even Sludge bands which appear everyday take influences in Doom through references of the 70's , while MARBLE CHARIOT would tend more towards the 80's and other Trad' Doom bands as Hour of 13, Reverend Bizarre, TGOS... is that due to your background which is basically METAL or ... ?

The bands that you quote prove today that can we refer to a glorious past without sacrificing his personality. Regarding the influences from the 80s, I believe that the doom metal we play and we want to play is deeply rooted in bands of this decade and although we love greatly bands of the 70s, their influence is less fudamental in the development of Marble Chariot. It was very clear that when we have formed the band, Godfathers hymns such as Saint Vitus, Pagan Altar, Reverend Bizarre, Orodruin ... would be very present in our way to write some songs.It was a thoughtful willingness on our part to follow in the footsteps of these bands we admire forever. As I said previously we will be eternally grateful for these spiritual fathers while continuing to progress and work our own style.An insignificant band like ours can strengthen the foundations of a church that will never fall.

There's a very special mood in "the burden is so heavy" , not just musically but there's a deep atmosphere of crushing sorrow that reminds "the wretch" sound, were you guys in a normal state when recording this or did booze and/or weed seriously surround the recording conditions to a music that is already a way to express sadness, melancholy and dark feelings (I'm also refering to lyrics of "the wandering soul" and "for long lost friends"...) ???

In fact, I'm glad you perceived the very special atmosphere of the recording. some of us had to deal with serious problems of depression and addiction. You should know that the recording took place during an afternoon and a morning and evening that separated these two sessions turned into an alcolholocaust. No sleep for three days due to some taking amphetamines added to a huge consumption of alcohol for the entire band. Although I doubt that a new recording session does not take place in this way, if only for the survival of the group, this session has the merit of showing a band on the brink playing with the guts despite the many mistakes of the recording.

Are you opened to other forms of Doomed sounds (Stoner, sludge, funeral, drone) or are you rather conservative towards the way DOOM shall be played and its essence ? Have you heard about "la ste ligue du doom" ?

We are first and foremost passionate about music and as such, we do not listen exclusively traditionnal doom metal and if we can be influenced by other styles or sub genre of doom, this contribution must be integrated intelligently to our music without deform or transform our first aim: to play doom metal, in the historical sense of the term. Personally, I listen to a lot of Black / Death / Doom Metal with bands like Goatlord, Demoncy Beherit's Drawing Down The Moon, Hellvetron, Void Meditation Cult, Profanatica, Ptahil, Faustcoven, Cultes des Ghoules ... The atmosphere truly black and putrid that offer these bands added to a primitive incredible power inspires me greatly and allows me to apprehend a different way my songwriting.

I know la sainte ligue du doom and I appreciate the fact that the blog incenses albums that in my humble opinion passed almost unnoticed, I think especially of Hounds Hasselvander's the ninth hour, Northwind's Winters and War Injun's Tribal Eulogy (pure Maryland Doom) which are two of the best albums emerged in recent years under the banner of Doom Metal.Well studied and traditionalist analysis more of these comparative studies make this blog one of the most interesting on the web. However, I regret that the site is no longer active.

The scene in Bordeaux seems to be moving a bit with Oyabun, Sun Preachers (some of you play in this one, right ?), Marble Chariot... (not forgetting Gasmask Terror and their veteran of the french underground Luc A., hail dude !) is there any other bands you would recommend to deaf ears ?

There are two members of Marble Chariot who play in Sun Preachers (your servant and Quentin) and two other members of the Sun Preachers playing in Oyabun (Joel and Boris). As such, we had the honor to listen to the songs from the new album, the hiss, I can tell you that the album will be great, for the fans of pure fury hard rock. Regarding the scene Bordeaux, I must admit that I'm not aware of what is happening right now and I think you already know the groups that are more or less the same style as us: Aguirre, Year of No Light, Mars Red Sky ... Oh I forgot there is the group High Power but they splited up there over 20 years, the self-titled album is a pure masterpiece (laughs). You were talking about Luc and we played with Gasmask Terror, a very good memory, luc is a humble guy and very quiet but with an infinite devotion and impressive musical culture.

Bordeaux is sadly for you a town that rarely attracts doom and stoner bands that are touring, even if you played in 2012 with Red Fang and Horisont too, but I presume you'll be soon looking for gigs outside your area, is there any contact for that ? Are you guys going to Paris for gigs or at Hellfest/roadburn/... ?

I don't teach you anything when we know the success of the Stoner scene today and derivatives. So, the situation tends to evolve lately, but it's gonna be perpetuated, that is the question. we have to thank some fans that drive the local scene, you were talking about luc, we must add the Heretic Club and especially François and Negative Beliefs (including our drummer Boubi) who make great efforts to set Fuckin' good heavy music.

The french Doom scene is a bit more active these days ... do you pay attention to its evolution (new bands, new releases...) ? Will you be present at that festival (not far from your bases, near Niort) next May with The Bottle Doom Lazy Band, Northwinds, Stangala and Children of Doom ? (if yes, hope to meet you there !) Are you guys going to Paris for gigs or at Hellfest/roadburn/... ?

Yes, I try to have  interest to new groups and new recordings although I am less inclined to search right now. If my schedule allows me (forced labor), I would go to that date. For concerts, I'll make the trip to see Saint Vitus on March 9. we went to doom shall rise twice where we met the guys from children of doom ( remember Turkish Born Too Late song, it should recall their memories).

What are the plans for 2013 ? Do you already have some new songs to talk about that will be included in your next recording ?

We are currently working on new songs and are really pleased with the turn taken by the group. The style is refined, becomes more personal, the group is more consistent musically. The songs are darker, more epic, more heavy. We will take the time to perfect the future recording and release. I think we will be ready to record to the last quarter of the year.

I've seen on your page another great review from the mighty Sludgelord but apparently it's rather quiet outside this, did you contact other blogs/webzines/distributors ... ?

When I say we are finalizing the last details for the demo out physically and will contact Blogs/Webzines/Fanzines/Labels... . Until now we have little concern about this aspect but that will change.

Thanx guys for answering this, add something important we might have not spoken about yet...

Thank you for your support, your revelant questions and long life to your blog which is a great quality.

"Après tout, pourquoi n'y a t-il pas autant d'art possible dans la laideur que dans la beauté? C'est un genre à cultiver voilà tout" -Louis Ferdinand Céline-

Thursday, January 24, 2013

... Paris is doomed : TOMBSTONE "Where the Dead Belong" (album review)

I briefly presented you this young parisian band last December along with other French newcomers (here) announcing a first full-length in the works, which effectively didn't took too long, as "Where the Dead Belong" is now streaming on Bandcamp !
The album is composed by 7 songs, lasting from 3 to 10 minutes, for a total length of about 40 minutes. One thing quickly clear with TOMBSTONE is their taste for slow to mid-paced Traditional Doom (with a -slight but present- groovy stonerish edge à la Goatsnake, "Born of a Jackal" most particularly).

Fuzzy and warm, a great part of the riffs are slowed down, ominous and powerful, there's some Black Sabbath, St Vitus and Trouble in here.
Vocals are generally well paced with the music through a clear and melodic approach, more heavy-rock than purely doom in fact, they could show a bit of variation in the darkest moments and be a bit more ominous in general but they're good in the more up-tempo beats (of "Shines" for example).

Last song "Werewolf", the longest and smartest of the album, let place to more adventurous structures, with lots of reverb in the furious soloing. There's long instrumental moments who include the best moods of the album - I would even say the most original.
More plodding, twisted and soulful, this one certainly shows Tombstone under its real own visage, even if the influence of Dave Chandler is still present in that fuzz drenched noise; the guitar turns out nicely acidified, eerie and wizardly droning, while the bass remains amazingly crushing. shit that's a fuckin' good song to end the album !

This kind of gives the confirmation that Tombstone would need in my opinion to be a bit more unrestrained, get loose from their influences and sometimes too typical structures; for the most part of the album everything is well balanced but somewhat too predictable, this "Werewolf" shows that some development is clearly possible.
The potencial is here and how could we decently complain when we have such a solid debut in our little budding french doom scene ?! Tombstone is ready to cross the path with other french acts across the country and abroad, playing live will certainly help them to find and reveal their real identity (with eventually smoking more different kinds of good weed  and whisky from the countrysides too, hahaha !). Meanwhile this album deserves attention and is a good starter for the year to come in the Trad' Doom scene.

Like them on FB and help to add quickly a 0 to the ridiculous amount of fans they've attracted so far... hey guys you've got a great product in hands, I hope you'll work good too on promoting it ;)

... Basel (swit), a future not to be missed-destination for Sonic Masses w/ 7 RITES !!!!

7Rites presents an arcane praise of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Heavy-Metal, Sludge, Stoner Metal, Psychedelic Rock and much more.

It presents you special selected CONCERT series in the very chambers of an historical, artistical masonry in the heart of Basel, Switzerland – the one and only and last standing ‘harbor’ of Rock, Punk-Rock & Metal and alternative living in Basel - since 1979 !

Hirscheneck, Basel (Switzerland)!

Be prepared to immerse into the other side of Music!
First 2 events:

22.2.13 7RITES presents: Saturnalia Temple - Attic - Cult of Blood

04.05 @7RITES presents: Witch Mountain - The Wounded Kings - Hangman's Chair


 September 2013 ( 7RITES present:) soon !

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