Grindhead Records has recently released another album. Not really grind, nor is it really doom... or any of the other genres normally mentioned on here. It is quite good though. Here's what Grindhead Records have to say:
Grindhead Records is privately inviting you to the celestial experience created by ethereal Mish on their debut album "The Entrance". Offering a combination of effortless tempo changes with a command of syncopation that ebb and flows while soaring, often sparse vocals weave complimentary ambient textures and an appreciation for building motifs, "The Entrance" is a diverse audio presentation.
Crunching, stop-start hammering guitars flow into minimal, hypnotic tones partnered with flowing and yet strong bass lines and a drum kit that commands time dynamically, pulling back the melancholy and pushing forth the rage. Ambient keyboards and samples complete the sculptured, temporal aural-scapes that are monumentally heavy on the groove, catchiness and melody.
For fans of Tool, Helmet, Isis, Cult Of Luna, Neurosis, Meshuggah, Karnivool.
This is perhaps the most shocking headline of 2012. Triple J's The Racket has announced it's new host: Lochlan Watt -- and he actually knows a thing or two about Australian underground music!
Lochlan helps run the awesome underground Queensland label Monolith - home to In Trenches, Ironhide and IDYLLS. He's played in Ironhide, Nuclear Summer, Western Decay and The Surrogate. He has written for Blunt, No Heroes Mag, Death Before Dishonour and Drum Media. IE: this guy knows his shit.
Looks like The Racket will no longer be hosted by an out-of-touch clown longing for the 80's and starving good Australian music of airtime just so you can hear Iron Maiden, Metallica and Megadeth for the millionth fucking time. Sadly, I anticipate the boring people who usually listen to The Racket to whinge and complain about this.
In other news, Scott Kelly (Neurosis) and John Baizley (Baroness) played Sleep's Dopesmoker in it's entirety on The Racket last night. Awesome.
Lochlan helps run the awesome underground Queensland label Monolith - hope to In Trenches, Ironhyde and IDYLLS. He's played in Ironhide, Nuclear Summer, Western Decay and The Surrogate. He has written for Blunt, No Heroes Mag, Death Before Dishonour and Drum Media.
Well, 2011 was yet another year dominated by souless, watered down music in the mainstream music industry. Bland garage/indie and horrid R&B-pop were, once again, the order of the day. Perhaps more disturbingly, some styles previously associated with underground music continued to be watered-down and repackaged into acceptable pop culture products - namely hardcore and metalcore, who have now seemingly completed their transition into music forms completely devoid of any human emotion or feeling. The post-rock scene similarly provided an endless supply of bands that sound exactly the same.
In spite of my general misanthropy towards the wider music scene, there were still some more unique gems to be had if you dug deep enough. What's more, I really felt like this was a great year for the various underground music scenes in Australia. I feel like there are more bands of more diverse styles going the DIY path, putting on great shows and releasing original, soulful music.
What more, Sydney was lucky enough to have Black Wire Records to actually support underground punk, hardcore, crust, powerviolence and grind.
Here's what I dug in 2011.
Top 5 releases of 2011
- The Devin Townsend Band - Deconstruction: Brilliant. Possible Devin Townsend's very best.
- YOB - Atma: If anything just for Before We Dreamed of Two and Adrift in the Ocean. An incredible doom record.
- Bjork - Biophilia: The best Bjork release since Homogenic.
- Graveyard - Hisingen Blues: I struggle to think of a better rock album released in the last decade.
- La Dispute - Wildlife: An honest and genuine emotional catharsis. Honest and genuine.
Top 5 grind(ish) releases of 2011
- The Kill - Shower of Bricks: the perfect distillation of intense grindcore.
- The Reverend Jesse Custer - The Reverend Jesse Custer: sludgy, raging metallic grind and hardcore.
- Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt - Counter Transference: techy polyrhythmic, sporadic math/grind bliss.
- IDYLLS - Amps for God / Plague Hell: furious fucking grinding metallic hardcore.
- Wormrot - Noise: blistering and intense.
The 10 albums I couldn't stop playing all year
- Emily Haines and the Soft Skeleton - Knives Don't Have Your Back
- Roots Manuva - Brand New Second Hand
- YOB - Atma
- Bohren & Der Club of Gore - Black Earth
- Bohren & Der Club of Gore - Sunset Mission
- Dax Riggs - Angel in the Dopesmoke (live bootleg)
- Neil Young - Dead Man soundtrack
- Neurosis - The Eye of Every Storm
- Worlds End Girlfriend - Hurtbreak Wonderland
- The Cinematic Orchestra - Every Day
The 10 Australian releases you really should have heard
- Hydromedusa - Self-titled: Adelaide stoner rock that just oozes bluesy class. (It's FREE! Get it!)
- sleepmakeswaves - And So We Destroyed Everything: An interesting post-rock record? Well I never!
- Pirate - Left of Mind: Fantastic Sydney instrumental prog.
- An Emerald City - The Fourth: Technically Kiwi, but a great, cinematic album.
- Tangled Throughts of Leaving - Deaden the Fields: These guys came outta nowhere (Perth)! Incredible progressive, piano-driven music mixed with progressive and post music.
- Mother Mars - Fossil Fuel Blues: Perhaps Sydney's greatest stoner/desert rock band.
- Arrowhead - Atomsmasher: Or perhaps these guys are?
- Serious Beak - Huxwhukw: Okay it's my band, fuck you.
- Squat Club - Corvus (remixed, remastered and re-released): Now with even more mind-bending polyrhythmic clarity!
- Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt Counter - Transference
My favourite live shows of 2011
- Portishead at Sydney Harvest Festival
- Eagle Twin at Manning Bar
- Gotye at Angel Place City Recital Hall
- Kyuss at The Big Top
- The Reverend Jesse Custer at Town Hall Hotel
- Captain Cleanoff and Death-Cult Jock at Black Wire Records
- Ruins, Darth Vegas, Slimey Things (Featherfest 2011) at TONE
- Clagg and Agonhymn at The Pony
- Space Bong, Looking Glass and Hydromedusa at The Sando
Australian grind hero of the year
- Jack of Die Pigeon Die. Just an all around good bloke who never relents in his selfless passion to support Australian grindcore.
You disagree? Oh what a surprise! What did you guys dig this year? Was it a good year? A shit year?
Sydney psychedelic stoner/doom band Adrift for Days are launching their 71-minute debut album "The Lunar Maria" this Friday at Club Carnage (Plantation Bar, Empire Hotel, Kings Cross). Joining them are Melbourne's experimental doom duo Agonhymn alongside locals Summonus and Bad Voodoo.
"The Lunar Maria" is inspired by groups like Neurosis, Electric Wizard, Weedeater, Alice in Chains, Orange Goblin, Om and Sleep and features members of other Sydney bands including Ebolie, Intrepid, The Captains Package and Kill A Celebrity.
The album was recorded at The Brain Studios, with additional recording, mixing and mastering completed by Tim Carr at 301 Studios.
Adrift for Days have two songs from "The Lunar Maria" available for streaming and download on their MySpace page. The album will be made available for $15 at shows as well as online and through iTunes from August.
Five Star Prison Cell are finally set to release their follow up to 2007's Slaves of Virgo. Entitled M A T R I A R C H, the album is to be released via RIOT! and distributed through Warner Music from May 18, 2010.
M A T R I A R C H (god that's annoying to type) was produced by Forrester Savell, who has worked previously with Karnivool, Helmet, Human Nature, Mammal and apparently even From the Ashes. Artwork duties are to be handled by Seldon Hunt (Neurosis, Isis, Candiria).
Can't wait to get my hands on this one. These dudes are insanely chaotic - not to mention creative, heavy and above all inhumanly fucking tight. Think Meshuggah meets early The Dillinger Escape Plan and Fantomas. IE: fucking intense. Five Star have been Ebolie's favourite Australian metal band for some time with good reason - though they never receive the credit they deserve as they refuse to produce easily-accessible or easily-categorizable music. They leave your average metalhead absolutely bewildered, which is yet another reason why I dig them.
In a related matter, Five Star Prison Cell are apparently playing in Sydney on the 18th of June with Serious Beak - the new project of Lachlan, Gene and Tim of Ebolie.