Saturday, 27 October 2012

Weekly Mail Bag 10/22/12 - 10/26/12

A look at what came in the mail this week with quickie reviews ...

Abysmal Grief - Misfortune - I really like this one because it's got something every doom band needs in some quantity: cheesy organ.  The kind you would find Count Dracula playing.  A mood setting album, it's got a good late 60s / early 70s / Hammer horror film feel.  Already had it digitally but had to get the CD.  I don't listen to this enough.  Highlights include "Ignis Fatuus" and "Cadaver Devotion".  Rating - 4/5

Argus - Boldly Stride the Doomed - I discovered this terrific traditional doom band on the Soggy Bog of Doom Podcast's Traditional Doom special.  They have a very heavy guitar attack and the vocalist really belts 'em out, you get the sense he believes in what he's singing and the band believes in what they're doing.  They do traditional doom right.  Highlights include "The Ladder" and "A Curse on the World". Rating - 4.5/5

Bee Gees - Bee Gees` 1st - Released during the summer of love, the Bee Gees First album was neither the falsetto singing disco Bee Gees that you may think of them as nor was it their real first album.  But it is their best.  As psychedelic as the groovy Klaus Voorman cover suggests, this is a solid album if a little slow in places by being ballad heavy.  Highlights include "In My Own Time" and "Turn of the Century".  Rating - 4/5

Blizaro - City of the Living Nightmare - Wasn't sure what to make of this group at first, because I liked what I was hearing, but I kept waiting for the "song" to start.  Once I knew what to expect I was ready for them.  They create soundtracks to imaginary horror movies from the late 70s / early 80s but also have more traditional doom metal songs as well.  Very interesting and worth checking out.  Highlights include "Finale Incantata" and "Portallucinations".  Rating - 5/5

Deep Purple - Machine Head - One of the 'Holy Trinity of Heavy Metal' and another album I grew up with, it was time to add it to my collection if for no other reason than the solos in "Highway Star".  So maybe I am dead sick of "Smoke on the Water" but this album`s still required listening.  Can`t go wrong with any of the first six Deep Purple albums. Highlights include "Highway Star" and "Space Truckin".  Rating - 5/5

Goya - Demo - From Arizona comes one of the most promising demos of the year.  They play a very fuzzed-out style of stoner doom.  The presence of Electric Wizard is
very heavy, especially on "Blackfire", but the spirit of Black Sabbath reigns over everything Electric Wizard's ever done.  That's the great thing about music.  At the end of the day, Goya plays some great tunes with a great tone, both sonically and stylistically.  Highlights include "God Lie" and "Night Creeps".  Rating - 4.5/5
Kadavar - ST - I put off getting this one forever.  It didn't disappoint.  There's a duality to the German consciousness that they like things either old or weird.  Either looking to the past or the future.  Kadavar does both.  Bigass 70s riffs with slightly more adventurous songwriting reminds one of The Shovell.  Liked every song here on first listen.  Highlights include "All Our Thoughts" and "Purple Sage".  Rating - 4.5/5

Led Zeppelin - III - Like most redneck biker kids, I grew up on Zeppelin.  So can you believe I have never actually owned a copy of Zeppelin II or III.  It's always just been around.  Somebody's got those kicking around.  III was the one Zeppelin album my parents didn't have, so of all of Zep it's the one I'm probably least sick of.  Highlights include "Immigrant Song" and "Celebration Day".  Rating - 4.5/5

Mountain - Climbing! - A disappointing album for those looking for more "Mississippi Queen" and/or "Never in My Life", but an altogether solid, if typical, album for its time.  That said, it is worth it for those two all-time classics alone, but there`s more to explore here.  Kind of reminds me of George Harrison`s "All Things Must Pass" album.  Highlights include "Never in My Life" and "Sittin`on a Rainbow".  Rating - 4/5

Premonition 13 - 13 - Not to disparage his faultless musical output in the slightest, but Wino could probably shit on record and I'd pay to hear it.  So without so much as a single note previewed, I went ahead and ordered this one.  As always Wino doesn't disappoint, he just surrounds himself with great musicians and produces every time at bat.  Highlights include "Clay Pigeons" and "Deranged Rock & Roller".  Rating - 4/5

The Smoke - High in a Room - One of the great 60s psychedelic bands, this was their only album released  in Germany and it's not great, but I love this band.  I already had the 'best of'' collection which actually has all the best songs from this album, but being a bit of a completist I had to get this one to have the full album, this CD also has 14 bonus tracks.  Highlights include "High in a Room" and "My Friend Jack".  Rating - 3/5

Under the Sun - Man of Sorrow - Mix Kyuss, Rush and Saint Vitus and whadda you got?  This band.  There's even some Van der Graaf Generator, East of Eden or John Entwistle in there as well.  This is a really unique album as I think it's the only one I've heard that I would classify as Stoner Prog rock.  Great songwriting, excellent tones.  No real weak moments.  Highlights include "Stride" and "Divinity".  Rating - 4.5/5

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