Sequoia: Doom it Up!

Another big rage last summer was Poland’s Major Kong.  Providing us with an immense dose of slow doom, they ticked mine and DeHud’s palates with the superb ‘Doom for the Black Sun’ release.

Well, the Polish doom scene shows no signs of abating, and while Rip It Up napped, they sneaked out a new track back in February entitled ‘Sequoia’.  Building on their previous melodic outing, they have delved even deeper into the dark pit this time, with the track oozing a stoned, confused mix of guitars and fuzzed up bass, all held together by Bonham-esque drums.  The emphasis this time around seems to be less on heaviness and more ‘rock’ orientated, [it even goes off on a Hawkwind-esque reverie at about 8 minutes] but it’s a great track for sure and hopefully serves as a portent of exciting new material to come.

Check this out:



Mage: New Album Preview and Mini Interview with Leicester’s Finest Doom Merchants

Back in May, Rip It Up alerted you to the fact that Mage were an original sounding band hailing from DeHud’s spiritual home, Leicester.  I have recently been chewing the fat, internet style, with the band’s guitarist, Ben, about their new album ‘Black Sands’, which is due out soon.  If you don’t know, Mage are a 5-piece band comprising Ben – Guitar,  Andy – Drums, Tom – Vocals, Mark – Bass and Woody – Guitar.  With admirable frankness, they describe themselves as “we’re basically five guys who’ve been around in a variety of bands over the years, brought together by a shared love of “THEE RIFF” and a desire to jam and see what happens.”  My senses were alerted to them when I picked up on the self titled ep, released on the excellent Witch Hunter Records.  Combing heaviness, riffage and a mixture of doom, metal and a splash of hardcore, I was intrigued.

So here is a taster and a short interview with Ben about the band and how they work.

I started by asking Ben a bit about how the first ep had been received and how the band had formed.

“I think the overwhelming response we got from the self titled EP was that people really enjoyed it, but wanted more, it was a scant 15 minute run time as we were sort of limited by budget and time constraints at the time so our first release had to be an EP really. We hadn’t been together long as a full five piece as when we first started it was just myself, Andy on the drums and Mark on the bass having a jam as we were sort of in between bands at the time, so we wrote some tracks together as we were trying to acquire a vocalist, Tom came along as a mutual friend of myself and Mark and we clicked straightaway, so we carried on writing with added vocals but something was still missing. That’s when Woody entered the scene, he knew Mark  and again, it just clicked right away.  The first EP was sort of written by three different lineups really with a definite focus on being a Stoner/Doom band Initial riffs and whatnot were done as a three piece instrumental, which then changed as Tom joined the fold and changed again to accommodate Woody on guitar.”

Ben continued by telling me a little about the style and influences of the band.

“The new material on Black Sands has been written as a solid unit, a full band, everyone bringing something to the table, and adds a lot more of our shared and individual influences. We have a shared love of the whole Stoner and Doom thing, Black Sabbath, Kyuss, Fu Manchu etc. but there’s a whole lot more there too and I think it shows in the new material. To use a clumsy cooking analogy Stoner/Doom is the base but we garnish with bits of Thrash, traditional Metal, Hardcore elements and a dash of whatever takes our fancy really. It wasn’t really a conscious effort, it’s just how the songs grew organically really, I’ve slipped into a clumsy gardening analogy now… Basically, we’re not constricted by genre “rules” and have no problem throwing in a galloping Maiden-esque section, a chugging Hardcore breakdown or any manner of other stuff that tickles our fancy.”

The new album’s teaser tracks show a cracking production, and a maturity in the song structures.  I asked Ben to explain the way they go about songwriting.

“Our song writing process is pretty much exclusively jam based, we get together, plug in, stand around scratching our heads for a bit, then (all being well) inspiration will strike one of us, a riff will start and we all pile in and hammer away at it as a unit and see what happens. We have one of those handy little digital recorder things so can get stuff down at practice/jam sessions pretty easily as a bit of a rough sketch. It’s usually a good indicator that you’ve got something that “works” if you find yourself humming the riff you just wrote on the drive home or the next morning, there’s a lot to be said about a catchy riff, think of the famous Sabbath songs, catchy, direct riffs, but still heavy as hell, I think that’s what we strive for deep down.

After we’ve got a basic structure together, or at least a couple of riffs that feel right together we start to put it together, at first, in a traditional intro/verse/chorus/verse/chorus type of structure, record that and Tom works on the lyrics and vocals. Once there’s a bit more of a song there that’s when we mess with it, lengthen a section here and there, throw in a fast bit, make room for a solo etc. and we all contribute to that process, it’s very much a group effort which is why I think the Black Sands material has that variety of influence but it still grooves along and works as a solid album, it’s not just disparate elements welded together for the sake of it.”

So which bands have influenced Mage, both generally and in terms of the new album? I’d say the ubiquitous Sabbath, CoC, a little bit of early ish Metallica and a flavour of Fu Manchu fer sure?

“Our influences are all over the place really really, we have a shared base of: Black Sabbath, Blue Cheer, Kyuss, Fu Manchu, Clutch, High On Fire, Karma To Burn, Corrosion Of Conformity, Goatsnake and all the usual suspects, but individually we take inspiration from a variety of all the different flavours of Metal and beyond: Mastodon, Anthrax, Hatebreed, Lamb Of God, Metallica, Carcass, Entombed, Slayer, Iron Monkey, Helmet, Primus, Rush, KISS, Foghat, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Iron Maiden, Napalm Death, Cream, and all sorts of stuff in between.”

Rounding off, I asked Ben to explain the process of writing, recording and releasing the new album – which must be a fraught process I’m guessing….

“It’s been quite hard work getting Black Sands to a finished state, our initial plans were to write through the Autumn/Winter of 2011 and record sometime around March 2012. Which didn’t quite work out, we had a few gigs which set back the writing process as the scant time we could get together was spent running the set instead of writing so the plans kinda slipped to recording around May time, which again slipped, and we ended up hitting the studio in late July for 2 days and then doing half a day in August to finish off. Again, budget and time constraints meant that we had to focus on getting things as tight as possible before hitting the studio to maximise what we could achieve.

Our recording process runs a bit like this: full band in the same room together plays the song live (this is used as the base of the track and keeps a live feel and groove), myself and Woody overdub an extra guitar each at the same time, Woody overdubs any solos as required, Tom does a first vocal pass, then a second vocal pass, mix it all together and you’re sorted. Which sounds kinda easy, but fitting 10 songs of that process into 16 hours and leaving time for mixing etc. was GRUELING, hence us going back for half a day in August to finish up.

How do you feel about the end result though?

We’re all really pleased with the end result though, it captures what we’re all about and adds some funky studio based bells and whistles to bring it to the next level. I’m personally very proud of what we’ve achieved with such limited funds and time, there’s always gonna be niggles and bits that you think “ohhhhh, I wish I could re-do that little bit”, but at the end of the day you have to draw a line and say enough is enough, and you have to realise that these bits that you may personally obsess over won’t matter a damn to 99% of the people who listen to it.

It’s hard to separate yourself as a musician and a listener at times especially when it’s something you’ve written, played hundreds of times and know inside out. It’d be nice to be able to hear it as a “punter” hears it rather than thinking “oh no, I bent that note a fraction more than I usually do” or whatever. But once you accept that it’s never gonna be flawless, and just stick it on in the car or at home and turn it up real loud it feels great knowing that you had a hand in creating that.”

So when can we expect the album on the streets?

“The masters are away for duplication and print now and we should have the final product in our hands early October. The rest of the tracks will trickle onto the Bandcamp page at some point before then and I’m sure we’ll have an online source for purchasing a physical copy at some point too.”

Cheers to Ben and the guys – and check out the preview tracks below – we’ll let you know when the album is available.

Belgian Doom War

Right then.  I’m just back from the big city of London, and I’ve been involved in all sorts of exertions involving running the British 10k.  After standing in the rain for an hour and a half waiting to start whilst being assaulted by the sounds of Heather Small singing on the top of a double decker bus, we got going and I clocked a rather decent time of 48 minutes and 45 seconds.  That’s enough sports jock bragging – I am also here to step up what will inevitably become a doom war! 

Did you hear me? I said this is Doom War!

If you’re as old as me then you might have heard of a band called Magma.  Way back in the early 1970s, this French jazz-rock powerhouse was a real cult outfit, featuring as it did the twin massive talents of drummer Christian Vander and bassist Jannick Top.  They were so into their ecological jazz concept trip that they invented a parallel reality, a utopian planet [Kobaïa] for whose people they even created a language – Kobaïan.  But [and this is compressing the fascinating story rather massively] things turned sour after some highly regarded albums, when the two men took their musical differences to an entirely new level.  It is said that Christian Vander declared Magic War on Top, and in a truly prog rock fit of dudgeon, they each rented a castle on adjoining hill tops in Spain in order to simmer with rage and to plot and wage their Magic War on each other.  This reached its zenith, as Julian Cope explains in his mandatory rock’n’roll history/autobiography, ‘Repossessed’,

the original group had come to a stunning and savage conclusion in Spain after a wild magic battle between Magma’s leader, the percussionist Christian Vander, and the epically named bass player, Jannik (sic) Top. Vander had rented a hilltop castle for his own uses, which had annoyed Top’s ego. He had rented a similar place within sight of Vander and the two proceeded to wage magic war upon one another. [Magma’s manager] Martin Cole told of how he had ended driving from one castle to another trying to patch the band up, only to discover Jannik Top with serious chest wounds, screaming that Vander had caused him to tear his own chest open.……

…when Jannik Top awoke one Spanish morning to discover that his former partner/boss had caused him to rip open his own chest during the night, whatever despair he then lived through must have eventually been overtaken (perhaps much much later) by the realisation that, together in temporary unity, a bass player and a drummer had not only glimpsed that Kobaian Utopia which they had projected into the heavens – but, like Igjugurjuk himself, they had sustained long enough to visit that imagined planet and its Utopian culture and bring us all back a piece

Why, although important from a Righteous point of view, is this at all relevant to this article? 

I’ll tell ya why.  Because if DeHud thinks he can trump my recent punk avalanche with his awesome pick of Belgian doom, then I’ve gotta roll out the big guns, right?  Well here they are then.  This ain’t Magic War, Holmes.  This is Doom War! 

Did you hear me? I said this is Doom War**!

You want Belgian?  You want heavy?  You want downtuned?  You need SardoniS.

SardoniS was formed in the summer of 2006.  They’ve released a 4 song 7”EP on September 1st, 2008 which was highly acclaimed by both national and international press.  To promote the EP, SardoniS did a load of gigs in the winter and spring of ’08/’09, sharing stages with Grand Magus, Torche, Pelican, Kylesa, Coalesce and Voivod.  That’s a heavy heritage which gives you a taster of what this band is all about.  With two 7″ releases and a new album just out their discography is increasingly impressive.

Shattering, bludgeoning power issues from this music, black in colour, and birds of all nightmarish kinds fly out of the cold, dark void that is created as a result.  Heaviness is redefined by such doom – and they’re only a two-piece for goodness sake!  And despite the onslaught, they manage a varied collection of music.  It’s lighter in some places, with acoustic guitars making a nervous appearance, and yet the after a brief lull we are off again into the land of dinosaurs and weird creatures as the music crushes our senses.  Sometimes fast, sometimes slow, sometimes all out death metal, SardoniS are never dull.

Check this release out, it will scare you senseless, but all the time, your senses will be battered by rage, yet pleased by the hot, intense experience.

**Foot Note: As you will see from the comments on this thread, DeHud has dismissed my invocation of a doom war.  Although I am a little bit disappointed, it is also a relief, because it would have involved increasing work on both our parts to raise the doom levels on Rip It Up in general, so perhaps it is best that we agree like gentlemen to leave it here.  I guess it’s time to balance things out with some more punk rock then, folks!

Slow and Low with Compel

If you are a regular reader of Rip It Up, you will know of our great love for slow, instrumental doom amongst other things.  Bands we have so far featured in this little sub genre include the marvellous Thorun from Wales, Slomatics, and Poland’s excellent trio of Major Kong, Belzebong and Dopelord.  There is something satisfying about digging heavy music that does not have the distraction of a lead singer and lyrics; you may think it leaves the song incomplete, and I agree that there is less ‘personality’ in such musics, but on the other hand, you can get down and nod along, as happy as a short legged labrador in mud. 

In this vein, I have been contacted by Joe Horne, guitarist in Summerville, South Carolina based doom band Compel; he informs me that this two – piece, which is made up of him and drummer Tim Davis, have a similar lack of need for a vocalist.

Compel released a three-track, eponymously titled ep in April this year, and it is an intriguing listen.  Eschewing identikit doom, the band show their musical chops in the way they trade complex, technical licks and structures.  No fools, they know that a doom band should be part heavy, part dreamy, part rocking; this music moves from psychedelia through straightforward heavy rock and into slow, battering stoner grooves with applomb.  I will let you make your own judgment on this band by including, as usual, their tracks below.  They are a pay what you want download, so give the boys some encouragement, and inspire them to further doom!

Let Dopelord into your Life…

Lublin, a city that sits in Eastern Poland, must have something strange in the water.  You may recall, if you are a dedicated reader of Rip It Up, how we featured the city’s immense Major Kong, who purvey a slow, stoner-y sound that suggests much too long spent in second hand record shops and a liking for rare herbs.  Well, I can tell you that I have recently been contacted by another band based in Lublin, this one called Dopelord, who are also immense, slow, downtuned and frankly bloody wonderful.

Dopelord consist of four members – Klusek – bass, Mroku – guitar, Arek – drums and my new contact, Miodek – who handles guitar and voices – although the main output of the band is that wonderful instrumental attack that we so loved with Major Kong.  Think dark, seedy club, low, green lighting, a haze of smoke flickering around candles, and lusciously thick, slow, downtuned riffiage.  This is a mixture of potent forces from all the ages of music, including St Vitus, Sabbath, Fu Manchu and as I have remarked before, a touch of the stand up righteousness of the Holy MC5.

Seven thick slabs of riffs are presented to the listener in this release, entitled ‘Magick Rites‘.  The songs ooze a strange, very intense green juice which might be a herbal extract.  They just don’t let up – this is what guitars were invented for.  What Dopelord have understood in their herbally enlightened state is that the stringed instrument was put on the earth to impart a higher form of consciousness to the human mind, thus enabling us to rise above the pettiness and pointlessness of our day to day endeavours.  Fuzzed out, distorted, wah-wah crazed chords just rain down on you as you listen, stunned, but pleased by your new found perspectives.

What I know is that, whilst you are in this state, which you have entered simply by clicking on the ‘play’ button of the Bandcamp widget below, you will realise that $3 is a pitifully small price to pay for such a stunning album of heaviness.  Get it – now, before I click my fingers and wake you up!

Descending into the Depths of Doom with Make

I’ve been sent a tip from Devouter Records, the UK based Doom purveyors, alerting me to the imminent release of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, drone-pysch-doom-metal trio MAKE’s debut album ‘Trephine’ on July 30th.  I’ve just driven home from Stansted airport – an hour’s journey in the car – listening to Thorun‘s excellent ‘Chorus of Giants’ ep, followed by Conan‘s ever more mesmerising ‘Monnos’.  So you can imagine the thick, dark clouds of doom that already surrounded me as I sat down at the Mac and clicked ‘play’ on this new release.  Boy, it really does bring a new level of doom to the word Doom!

A nine-track album, ‘Trephine‘ delivers slow, heavy stoner doom in spades.  The mandatory growl of the downtuned guitar and bass intimidates, whilst the listener is led into further uncertainty by the hovering, ethereal sound effects that resemble rogue spirits flying malevolently around some hot, parched post apocalyptic landscape.  The official story from Devouter actually makes it sound even more disturbing than I have already made out:

“With themes covering the concept of mortality, the infinity of death and the fragility of life, ‘Trephine’ is an assured debut that firmly stamps MAKE’s mark on the post-metal map.

After the death of a peer, MAKE guitarist Scott Endres (who also played on Horseback’s ‘The Invisible Mountain’ record) took to writing a concept album about a hospital resident regressing into a fantasy state after a psychological breakdown. This fantasy state is represented by a post-apocalyptic world, while the journey the protagonist embarks upon is hopefully the means to an end; his or her own personal trepanning.”

That’s not the kind of press release that Coldplay’s label are ever likely to put out, is it?  Trepanning, in case you are not ‘au fait’ with such practices, is the drilling of a hole in one’s skull, in order to release the pressure on the brain and – it is said – achieve a higher state of awareness.

This is a collection of varied, skilfully played songs that are genuinely atmospheric, melodic in parts, heavy as all get out in other parts, and to be honest – in some places – so utterly desolate and disturbed that you wonder if the sun will ever shine again.  But later passages hint at what I can only presume is some kind of redemption that the band hope to find in this bleak soundscape, and the black clouds part to offer some brighter rays of optimism.  The musical variety you get makes the album entirely listenable and the songs approach an epic quality in places, making this a case of the sum being much more than the parts.

This is a massive, involving and really quite mesmerising release and well worth a listen, but be warned, you won’t come out the other side and want to chat cheerily about the weather with your next door neighbour!

Gurt Top, my Babber!

….As they say in Bristol.  But right now, forget all about that.  The news I am here to tell you about concerns a release that has impressed me considerably – but first, indulge me and let me tell you a story.  It’s [kind of] relevant.

Way back in the day, both DeHud and I were based in rural East Anglia, from where in true teenage tradition we were desperate to escape to the sunlit uplands of….well….anywhere more exciting than there, basically.  Gangly, punk and notably unlucky with the girls, our evening amusement generally involved going out to the nearest town, drinking some weak lager in a pub filled with trendy, wedge haircut wearing ‘smoothies’ as they were then known, becoming enraged that Howard Jones or Duran Duran were weakly broadcasting their anemic sub pop musical dirge from the pub jukebox, and then heading back to our respective homes – often in DeHud’s ageing, maroon Mini.

I mention this because, uniquely, his Mini had a cassette player – but not positioned where you would expect, nice and accessible on the dashboard, but rather bizzarely UNDER the driver’s seat.  This meant that every time he wanted to change tapes, it would involve a frustrating, complex and altogether dangerous manoeuvring which often led to him wandering out into the middle of the road while oncoming drivers watched bug-eyed with terror.  But it generally worked, and so our journeys were filled with tinny, compressed and in-every-way-upsetting-to-an-audiophile emissions of punk music – one or two times it would chew up the tape and go really fast, or just descend into a kind of quiet fuzz.  It raged!

Back to now, in the present day.  The above anecdote really just underlines the ‘oldness’ of the cassette medium – I remember the vast choice you had – from basic, ferrous tapes from Rumbelows right up to the fancy ‘Metal’ tapes that I only ever saw when a posh kid at school got a high end hi-fi for his birthday, and brought in a tape of some Rush album or other, on a METAL cassette.  He made sure everybody knew it was a METAL cassette as well, the smug cunt.

But issuing a new release on cassette?  I’ve only just got used to vinyl again!  It’s true, and according to Chris from Superhot Records, top UK stoner/sludge band GURT have just done it!

Says Chris: “Do you still drive a crappy old car that still has a tape player? Still got the same old NWA, Michael Jackson and Roxette tapes kicking around that are all stretched and warped? Well it’s time to update your collection with the first tape release on Superhot Records; The Gurt Collection.

Volume 1 on one side, Redwin on the other (both CD editions now sold out) and a some unreleased stuff to boot. Limited to 50 copies and pressed onto orange cassette tape, this is some of the heaviest, filthiest UK sludge around at the moment.”

It’s true, and you can get the release The Gurt Collection from the Superhot Records store here.  It is truly staggeringly heavy, and is great stuff, as we have come to expect from this band.

….and side 2 is also here:

Arc of Ascent – The Higher Key

Well, yesterday we were in Adelaide, Australia checking out the sounds of the excellent Iron Worzel, so as we’re in an antipodean mood, I’ll mention another really great release from that part of the world – ‘The Higher Key’, an album released a few weeks ago by New Zealand stoner rockers Arc of Ascent.

This was one of DeHud’s discoveries on Bandcamp, and it turns out to be a good ‘un.  Arc of Ascent, comprising Craig Williamson on Bass/Vocals, John Strange on Drums and Sandy Schaare on Guitar, present us with a cracking second release, with six tracks of heavy, heavy rocking stoned grooves.  Taking influences from good old 70s rock, metal and a dose of downtuned stoner, this trio from Hamilton throws a sparkling dose of psychedelics into the mix for good effect.

What we end up with is a set of songs which in parts combine the slow, sludgy guitar and basslines of Electric Wizard with chanting and psychedelic exploration that you might find in some of MC5’s more far out work, or perhaps even later period Stooges.  There are thematic influences from Hawkwind going on here too, with a definite fantasy/spacey feel to proceedings; believe me this is not doom style metal, it is rock music out and out.

Being at heart an ageing punk, I am naturally suspicious of rocking excess in music, fearing that perhaps at any moment a track I am digging will lurch across that line that lays between ‘experimental’ and ‘hippyish self-indulgent excess’ – the risk of an impromptu lute solo is a constant worry for me – which would mean that we have come full circle and are in fact back in the mid 70s again. However this album manages to avoid such an approach.

At the weekend, fellow Rip It Upper DeHud and I discussed over some cold beers the view that some of the stoner bands do display this tendency in their visual iconography and musical embellishments. I think on balance that Arc of Ascent keep this element under control and produce some stand up work.  ‘Search for Liberation’ does stray a bit into the ‘Spacey’ territory for me on occasions, but overall the band proves that it is capable of some engaging music.  There is an interest here that is also apparent in the Earthmass release I mentioned last week, which has that epic quality to it as well.  Check this album out on Bandcamp!

Back to Poland Again: Satellite Beaver

I’ve had a few days off from the website.  As I mentioned on Saturday’s brief post, I’ve been up in the sweltering heat of the home of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Liverpool, paying my northern counterpart, DeHud, a visit.  The vague plan was to catch up, compare notes on music, and drink some beer.  We ended up doing all the above, as well as  completing a 15 mile sponsored walk in the giddying sun, and we almost saw the mighty Iron Witch, our attempt being sadly frustrated at the last minute due to the venue being closed down the night before.  Now, I’m back home and ready to breathe some life back into Rip It Up.   And I shall start by going, unashamedly, back to one of our favourite countries right now to alert you to a band called ‘Satellite Beaver‘ who hail from Warsaw. 

If you are a regular reader, then you’ll already know about our love for bands such as Major Kong, who have hit on that mighty doom style sound, but mixing it up also with unusual and interesting styles that you might not expect when listening to many of the identikit doom bands doing the rounds at the moment.  Thus, I was refreshed by the discovery of the new release by Satellite Beaver, entitled ‘The Last Bow‘ EP.   The band, comprising Szymon who handles vocals and  guitar, Tomek on guitar and Robert on drums, [they are currently searching for a bassist] crank out four heavy tracks on this EP and by the sound of it, they are a band worth watching.  Mixing a dark, sludgy, downtuned sound with influences as diverse as [to my ears, anyway] bands such as the mighty Prong, a bit of Weedeater, then chucking in some Sabbath-y riffs, a touch of Corrosion of Conformity, and a massive, crushing guitar attack, they have got me excited.

Released on 10th May, this is a fine investment of 3 Euros, and all the tracks stand up, my faves being ‘Urania‘, which is fabulously heavy, ‘Way Before‘, which is more metally, and ‘Roadtrip‘, which is stoner heaven.  Get it now, and we’ll keep you updated on their actions, which include the recording of a debut album – here’s a quick update from drummer Robert, who got in touch to let me know what they are doing:

“We will also tour a little bit of Denmark and Germany this autumn (September or so). We’re also heading e-lite culture festival near Berlin this July (19-22), cameral stoner rock event in Stolzenhein (100km from Berlin) with Lonely Kamel, Tschaika, Sungrazer, Ruins of Wyrd, etc.”

Drone from the Underside of the Earth

I’ve been away for a couple of days, so apologies for the lack of posts since Wednesday.  I have a life outside of Rip It Up! But as I type, sitting at DeHud’s macbook during a weekend visit up north which I hope will include a gig, I wanted to post about this compilation which has appeared on the Bandcamp site of Australian label Art as Catharsis.  Entitled ‘Drone from the  Underside of the Earth’, it is a showcase for all things heavy and downtuned from Down Under.

Now it has been said before that Sydney’s mighty Hard Ons are Rip It Up’s fave band of all time.  They themselves are influenced by all sorts of other great music that came out of Aus in the past – bands such as The Saints and Radio Birdman for example.  But this massive compilation, running to 26 tracks, shows a whole new generation of heavy bands.

Running the gamut of styles, from the Sabbath-inflected stoner rock of Arrowhead’s ‘Blood from a Stone’ to the super-heavy metallic sludge of Space Bong’s ‘The Death Kneel’, this is a really interesting compilation.  Art As Catharsis is a well established label with quite a few releases of interest, some of which I hope to post about before too long.

In the meantime, get this on loud.  It’s a free sampler and can be had from AAC’s Bandcamp page.