Hawkwind

Waste of Space Orchestra – Syntheosis Review

Waste of Space Orchestra – Syntheosis Review

“A certain thespian poise dominates throughout Syntheosis, the piece originally commissioned for Roadburn Festival 2018 and then turned into a proper studio recording. Highly conceptual, Waste of Space Orchestra narrate a quite demented story somewhere between magical realism and occult horror. The album develops intently and purposefully, tracing the lines of an imagined ritual and its performers, three mysterious creatures that aim ‘to open a portal that will suck them into a different reality of brain-mutilating color storms and ego-diminishing audio violence.’” Waste not, want more.

Hellnite – Midnight Terrors Review

Hellnite – Midnight Terrors Review

“During their halcyon years Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax loomed large over the thrash landscape, basking in success and spawning a fanbase so large it defied a horizon. But there existed a tier below the A and B-listers, bands like Allegiance, Heathen and Xentrix who eked out a modest existence built on solid albums supported by a coterie of eager followers. This is not a vein you’d expect a modern thrash band to mine for inspiration, yet that is exactly where Hellnite have chosen to strike their pickaxe with their debut album, Midnight Terrors.” Mine the medium.

Vanik – II: Dark Season Review

Vanik – II: Dark Season Review

“There are many ways to celebrate Halloween: candy; costumes; horror movies; punk-influenced thrash metal albums from Cleveland.  The latter is brought to you this October [Er, November… my bad – Ed.] by Vanik, a thrash band Frankensteined together from punk and metal musicians harvested from the likes of Toxic Holocaust, Ringworm and Vindicator. Following up their self-titled debut, Vanik have now sharpened their Voorheesian machetes in preparation for spreading terror with their new Halloween-themed record II: Dark Season, released by Shadow Kingdom Records.” Is one of the ways you can celebrate Halloween as dressing up as a retro thrash band and releasing a record? That answer, inside!

Katla – Embryo Review

Katla – Embryo Review

“Ah, the seventies. An excellent decade for wanton sex, drug abuse and consequently, psychedelic music. In the common mindset, the foremost psychedelic band is of course Pink Floyd, and with good reason. But another influential band that tends to get overlooked, is Hawkwind, who had a bit more oomph than the aforementioned space rock colossus, using experimental timbres and textures to accentuate their otherwise fairly straightforward proto-metal. The influence of Hawkwind (who, amazingly, are still around) is clear on the debut of the trippy Swedish quartet Katla.” A might (Hawk)wind blows.

Slomatics – Future Echo Returns Review

Slomatics – Future Echo Returns Review

“A blanket of smoke and incense billows from an attic-bedroom conversion as Electric Wizard makes a rare appearance from his occult abode to make a sandwich or to record an episode of Most Haunted. Conan sits in the garage and uses his sharp fingernails to shape mythical creatures out of wood, sporadically bellowing songs of war into the night, begrudgingly quieting down when his mother threatens to take away his copy of The Silmarillion. Slomatics is the younger brother of the two aforementioned doomsters. He spends his time gazing into the stars, reading Frank Herbert, Philip. K. Dick and H.G. Wells, and exploring the Moog that his father found for cheap at the car boot sale.” At home with the Slows.

Tombstoned – II Review

Tombstoned – II Review

“With a name like Tombstoned, you can probably gather that these boys love the sweet leaf and the doomy, sludgy sweet life of the ’70s. Warping back to a time once ruled by Black Sabbath and shared by Hawkwind, Tombstoned lather up in the buzzy, dynamic, heaviness of the former, while incorporating the psychedelics of the latter.” The rolling stoned gather no moss.

Voivod – Post Society EP Review

Voivod – Post Society EP Review

“Being old means you keep a lot of crap and not just what’s clogging your colon. I still have the issue of Unchain the Underground (as referenced in my last review) where I lambasted Voivod’s Angel Rat, an album that was like a poison-tipped arrow to my heart of steel at the tender age of 16.” The man has been lambasting since before some of you were eating.

The Meads of Asphodel/Tjolgtjar – Taste the Divine Wrath Review

The Meads of Asphodel/Tjolgtjar – Taste the Divine Wrath Review

“Split albums are hard to do well. It’s rare that the contributing bands are equally matched, and even rarer that the musical styles are complementary. The Meads of Asphodel are no stranger to the dodgy split.” Begs the question, is Tjolgtjar the yin to the Meads raging yang?

Plain Ride – Skeleton Kites Review

Plain Ride – Skeleton Kites Review

Plain Ride,’s latest album, Skeleton Kites, is billed as “a blues album created with a mindset of a West African proto-doom band, made in Finland.” If you’re wondering what the fuck that means, that makes two of us. More importantly, who is Plain Ride? Well, they’re a 5-piece band from Finland who have been around for about a decade. They’re led by vocalist/guitarist Janne Westerlund, who is apparently a big deal as a solo artist (never heard of him). Their website describes their style as “Folk, Country, Blues, hypno-psychedelic Krautrock.” In layman’s terms, that means that Plain Ride is either pretentious as fuck, or they have a very imaginative PR person.” I’m putting money on the latter.