The Life And Times usher in a new space-rock era on Lost Bees

PromoImage (43)

Were you blown away by that lone vocal performance on Pelican’s 2009 masterpiece, What We All Come To Need? Wonder who that “voice” was and where you could gobble up more of his singing? If you didn’t take the time to check out the liner notes (Or if you got the album under less than ideal circumstances), then Allen Epley is the man you’re looking for. Coincidentally enough his day job, The Life And Times, just released a new record entitled Lost Bees and if you liked the subtle intensity he brought to that one Pelican song then you’re in for a treat!

“Again” begins Lost Bees and could easily be the next Failure classic if, y’know, that band hadn’t decided to start making new music again. The song, and the band, stand on their own legs though with these almost chaotic bursts of sound that eventually come to a head, peak, and then come crashing down in the most glorious way. Next up, “Ice Cream Eyes” is propelled by Chris Metcalf’s driving beats while “Eyes And Teeth” gets a little prog and injects some space-Pop into the album.

If for some reason you need a break from Epley’s unassuming yet haunting vocals that stick with you well after the songs end then “Maserati” is definitely your jam as The Life And Times “Pelican” it up with this rocking instrumental. Metcalf thunders along during “Bored To Death” and perfectly synchs up with Eric Abert’s bass while Epley wails on guitar channeling Ken Andrews and Troy Van Leeuwen. Epley takes the high vocal road on the anthemic “Passion Pit” while further on, “Palatine” brings to mind Sap-era Alice In Chains.

In the vein of Failure at times with modern touches that Aeges do so well, The Life And Times is helping to usher in the next great era of post-grunge and space rock with Lost BeesLost Bees is out now through Slimstyle Records. You can get yours digitally here and here or through The Life And Times directly here.

What’s In A Name? Lonely Kamel wanna take you to Shit City!

558_LonelyKamel_CMYK

The name of the album is Shit City and the first song on the album is “Shit City”. If that doesn’t prove that Norway’s Lonely Kamel has some balls then I don’t know what will. Oh wait, maybe the music! Speaking of the music,  the title track which opens this magnificent opus comes off as a less abrasive Motorhead jam. It’s a sprawling 6-minute rawk-fest that serves as the dirty welcome mat for what’s inside so wipe yer shoes, sit down on the couch and enjoy the tunes!

“White Lines” channels Sub Pop-era Chris Cornell with Pepper Keenan tendencies (Thanks to vocalist/guitarist Thomas Brenna) and has a nice little boogie groove thang going on with some nice guitar wails thanks to Brenna and Lukas Paulsen. “Is It Over” gets bluesy with a ’70’s vibe and could easily fit (Along with “White Lines” and “BFD”) on the soundtrack for Dazed & Confused while “I Feel Sick” just goes for broke with some good old fashioned rawk and/or roll (Oh my gahd, the guitars here!!!)

Other highlights include the jam-fest “Seal The Perimiter” with glistening guitar lines and some tumbling percussive blasts thanks to Espen Nesset while Stian Helle’s galloping bass leads the epic “Falling Down” which bleeds into riff rocker “Nightjar” to close out the album.

Is Lonely Kamel reinventing the wheel with Shit City? Not at all. Are they adding a few spokes to make the proverbial wheel even stronger? Hells yes! And at the end of the day, if checking out a new band like Lonely Kamel causes listeners to track down bands like Kyuss, ’70’s-era Ted Nugent (Please gahd, NOT 2014 Nugent!), Motorhead, and countless others then I say more power to them!

Shit City is out now through Napalm Records. You can get yours here.

Lo-Pan channel a 96-foot tall statue on latest album Colossus

PromoImage (44)

If Torche and Roadsaw had a baby, the resulting bouncing baby boy would be Ohio’s Lo-Pan. Take those sludgy riffs and clean vox that bring to mind Roadsaw’s Craig Riggs and you have the recipe for something great. On Colossus, their fourth, Lo-Pan continually defy expectations to craft a monumentally monolithic masterpiece from start to finish.

“Regulus” instantly sets the tone for an album that’s filled with melody undercut by bone crushingly heavy riffs making for an interesting dichotomy throughout. “Black Top Revelation” shares some DNA with Small Stone labelmates Gozu while “Marathon Man” is a riffercise and a half.

The title track sounds exactly as you’d expect: either like the 96-foot tall statue for which the album was named or for a certain X-Man covered in organic steel. Yep, it’s that heavy. Meanwhile, “Vox” is a sonic eargasm and features Colossus cover artist Jason Alexander Byers (He, of Disengage and Black Black Black also) pitching in on the mic.

“Eastern Seas”shows off drummer J. Bartz as he crashes and churns like the waves of a mighty ocean while Jeff Martin’s vocals soar above swooping in to save listeners from the murky depths. Colossus finishes up with the rollicking “Relo” and “The Duke” which gives listeners a few more chances to appreciate the majesty of Skot Thompson’s bass and Brian Fristoe’s guitar wizardry.

Is this an album you need to own in 2014? Definitely! Colossus is out on October 7th through Small Stone Records. Yours can be pre-ordered right here. You can also catch Lo-Pan on tour now with Black Cobra. For dates and more, head on over here.

Jimmy Glitschy brings the desert rawk to Germany on selftitled!

cover

Jena rawk strikes again as another Bostonregina find makes their way to the RNRF office stereo. This time we’re checking out Jimmy Gltschy der einarmige Karussellbremser (Or just “Jimmy Glitschy” for short). If you’re a fan of Josh Homme’s Desert Sessions, Eagles Of Death Metal or the fuzzed out sounds that come from the fabled “generator parties” in Palm Springs then you might want to pay attention.

Great music is the kind that moves you somehow. Whether it’s physically or emotionally, great music needs to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, pull on your heartstrings or compel you to jump, bang your head, dance….whatever. It’s just gotta move you, okay! The beauty of Jimmy Glitschy’s selftitled is that it does all that and more.

From the opening laid back riffage of “Motorpsycho”, it’s apparent that Jimmy Glitschy isn’t your typical desert/stoner rock band. That’s even more apparent when “Dance! Or! Die!” kicks into high gear next and causes your booty to move involuntarily.  Later on, “Long Gone Dead” injects some country-fied twang into the musical repertoire while “Ma Baby” is, quite simply, a guitar party.

The songs that really stand out on selftitled are also the ones that’ll be stuck with you for days/weeks/years so buyer/downloader beware: if you don’t want the overwhelming power of Jimmy Glitschy to take hold of your body and soul, turn back now! I’m of course talking about “Fuzzmatazz” which leads the charge of the final wave of Glitschy greats on selftitled. If ever a song was deserving to stand in the upper echelon of desert rock anthems for the 21st Century, it’s “Fuzzmatazz” with a monolithic wall of guitars, some gruff vox, and a drum beat that’ll keep your head bobbing until the end. “We need more disko (do we?)” keeps the dancing alive and ups the riff factor, complete with an outro vocal refrain that’s sure to get you in trouble if you blast it in the office. Elsewhere, the lords of Kyuss shine down on “Killswitch” while bluesy closer “Slowrider” ends the album like the morning after a raucous night out on the town.

I’m not one to tell you what to do, I’m just here to provide an opinion with which you can make your own decisions. However, if you like any of the above mentioned bands, are a fan of desert rock, and have a pulse, then you should probably pick this one up.

selftitled is available now. You can get yours here and find out more about Jummy Glitschy here.

Welcome to Slab City, courtesy of Steak.

PromoImage

“I do like Steak. They’re the real deal. They’re mean. They’re lifers.”

If that quote from Mr. John Fucking Garcia doesn’t pique your interest in the UK’s Steak then I don’t know what will. On their first full-length following up some impressive EP’s (We reviewed the latest, Corned Beef Colossus, earlier this year), Steak  deliver in spades.

From the opening fuzzed out twangs of “Coma” through to the final pings of chaotic closer “Old Timer D.W.” (A modern day Southern-fried “Mondo Generator”, if you will), Slab City is a veritable stoner rock tour-de-force. To ease old fans into the new material there’s even an updated version of “Liquid Gold” with a different mix but still just as meaningful as the day it was birthed on the Corned Beef Colossus EP.

Elsewhere, the Kyuss references are bound to pop up again when the title track really gets into the groove with a riff that would make a 19-year old Josh Homme jealous. But if you’re looking to further those comparisons then try out “Pisser” when the man himself, John Garcia, pops up and drops some lines of knowledge during a massive riff-laden breakdown.

“Quaaludes and Interludes” provides a short and sweet, ahem, interlude for SC until “Roadhead” explodes from your speakers to turn it up once again. Then “Machine” and “Hanoid” provide a one-two punch that’s pure rawk ecstasy. If Kippa’s smooth delivery or Reece’s blistering solos and riffs don’t sway you, especially on that latter track, then you might want to check your pulse.

From the desert wasteland of England: it’s Steak! I know, right? They make sounds not of their country and not of this Earth because great music transcends area codes.

Slab City is out in North America on September 9th through Napalm Records. You can order yours here.

Grandfather’s latest offering, The Wolf, has fangs!

a0880372091_2 (1)

Bostonregina’s job sometimes causes her to travel the world which is a great thing for me sometimes because it exposes our little site to even more great bands that the interwebs doesn’t necessarily provide right away. One such band is Jena, Germany’s Grandfather. Who absolutely rock.

Ever wonder what it would sound like if Neil Fallon handled all vocal duties for Mastodon? That’s “The Wolf”, the opening track off Grandfather’s latest release of the same name. Crushing grooves, bestial drums, and a singer whose got both the gravitas and the growls to front this quartet? Sign me up!

“Crisis” begins with a solemn bass line and some spacey riffs to shake up the intensity of “The Wolf” but soon builds to en epic finale complete with vocal chants. The aptly titled “Instrumental” brings to mind West Virginian vocal-less greats Karma To Burn while “Borders” combines elements of “Freedom Run” and “Supa Scoopa & Mighty Scoop”, the latter especially during the start-stop finale. Closing with “Superloader”, which  ends the mini-album with a  balls out rocker that shares more heritage with AC/DC than with Kyuss, Grandfather provide enough diversity on The Wolf that will surely keep new fans interested in what’s to come.

The Wolf is available now. Right here. You should buy it and then go here for more on Grandfather. Because they rawk.

Hank & Cupcakes set to conquer the world on sophomore album, CA$H 4 GOLD!

hank-cupcakes-cash-4-gold

Trust me when I say that if you thought you knew what was coming after Hank & Cupcakes fabulous debut, NAKED!, then you have absolutely no idea what’s actually in store for you. On their sophomore release, CA$H 4 GOLD, the duo you love to love have not necessarily reinvented themselves insomuch as they’ve completely expanded their sound.

“Bat Your Eyelids” is a futuristic funk-filled phenomenon fused with enough fuzzy bass lines and warm feelings to instantly put a smile on your face. It’s the perfect opener for this opus and instantly indicative of what’s to come. Previous tease “Relax” follows up and enhances the vibe with a powerful electro stomp that really shows off Cupcakes massive vocal range which goes from a spoken word sing-song to a screech in a second. It’s also sure to be a huge crowd pleaser when presented in a live setting.  And while we’re on the topic, you can head here for the latest tour dates for Hank & Cupcakes upcoming fall tour!

“Romeo” lets Hank’s grooves shine with Cupcakes’ sonic percussion adding more depth while “Cocaina” is a gospel-fueled Southern blues romp that’s probably about the most unpredictable and fierce song H&C have ever laid down. If NAKED! gave you impressions of Duran Duran mixed with Yeah Yeah Yeah’s (Like it did for me) then CA$H 4 GOLD is Berlin, The Vapors, and Wang Chung in a modern setting.

Hank & Cupcakes is truly one of those groups that I can’t praise enough. They do their own thing and they do it really well defying modern Pop expectations with each and every release. Whether it’s the swirling synth bounce on “I Don’t Want To See”, Cupcakes soulful croon on “Spin”, Hank’s bass bravado on the epic “Go Slow” or the lush strings on “Money Is King”, CA$H 4 GOLD has something for every music fan. And if you were already a fan of H&C prior to this release, prepare to be pleasantly blown away.

CA$H 4 GOLD will be available for mass consumption on September 5th. For the latest on Hank & Cupcakes you can head on over here or here. But more importantly, head on over to Itunes or Amazon to get your copy of CA$H 4 GOLD!

What’s In A Name? Mr. Kitty releases the latest “Self-Destructive Synthpop” masterpiece.

a1987613914_2

Don’t let the name throw you, Mr. Kitty is not the cute and cuddly Pop you might’ve expected when you tuned in. Far from it, Mr. Kitty is, quite simply, the saviors of dance-pop synthetic goth what have you. It’s great dance music. It’s great music if you’re a vampire or great if you’re a fan of mood films like To Live And Die In L.A. or Manhunter. Modern noir, if you will.

In regards to Time, Mr. Kitty’s fourth (!) album, let’s put it this way: Have you ever wanted an album that perfectly encapsulates a night in the club, filled with those mindless throbbing beats and mid-tempo numbers that sporadically break up the dance floor sweatiness? That’s Time.

“XIII” storms the gates of Time with subtle, droning beats building into an indescribable crescendo of screams and electronics that will move you to no end. “Rats” breaks up the intensity with some nice Pop-infused mid-tempo awesome and “Glow” continues that trend with some beats destined for the Fright Night soundtrack. Circa 1985, obviously.

Like I said, if you’re itching to dance then a Mr. Kitty track to suit your needs is never too far away as “Hollow” follows to beef up the foot stomping quotient. “Devour” delivers even more so as does “Laceration” which brings back “XIII”‘s urgency. “Pathogen” keeps the pace alive  while “Shadow Dancer” is that song you heard in every moody ’80’s flick, being equal parts New Order and Depeche Mode.

Not only one of the greatest synth albums of 2014 but one of the best albums, period. Like me, you’ll be wondering how Mr. Kitty passed you by for so long (Seriously, this is the FOURTH album!!!!!). Now I just need to insure I get all of Time played at my next local goth night.

Time, the latest and greatest, from Mr. Kitty is out now. Head over to bandcamp to stream and buy.

Life On Planet 9 return with The Theory Of Everything

41UYcP5d5hL._SL500_AA280_

I randomly discovered Ultraspank when they were featured on Ozzfest back in 1998 and instantly fell in love with Pete Murray’s voice. The range, the emotion, the intensity….just everything about it was such a step above what the other bands on the bill offered. This was a bill that gave some great exposure to the Serj Tankian’s and Brandon Boyd’s mind you! But Pete Murray stood out. Yeah, he had that snarl but there was something else. One listen to “Wrapped” off their self-titled debut and it was obvious that this guy had “the voice”. Those sweeping choruses that echoed Maynard James Keenan that went to vicious Phil Anselmo-style attacks in no time were incomparable.

Over time, that voice has only grown as has the musicianship with the riff-machine Neil Godfrey who accompanied Murray from Ultraspank into Lo-Pro and the band of the hour, Life On Planet 9.

Bittersweet, the 2011 debut from Life On Planet 9, may have spawned from a desire to create a studio version of “Lo-Pro unplugged” but on The Theory Of Everything the band go for new extremes and finally find themselves. The minute the programmed beats of “Carry On” hit along with Godfrey’s gorgeous riffs and Murray’s uncanny voice it’s as if “Line Stepper” off Bittersweet never ended. “So we’re picking up where we left off” adds Murray around the 3-minute mark but it’s so much more than that.

The Theory Of Everything as a whole is bigger, better, and badder. “Everything” is just massive as is “Here We Are” which follows next, abruptly stopping for Godfrey’s lush acoustics and Murray’s echoed cries until opening up again into a gargantuan chorus. And that’s just the first three songs, people! “Home” is even greater than that and more epic, “Now” follows and ups the tempo slightly with Murray hitting those soprano notes just right while “Ordinary” picks up the pace with Godfrey’s guitars screaming along with Murray’s voice. And I haven’t even gotten to single “Rainy Days” or the the game-changing seven minute monstrosity “Stay” that hits in the middle!

Jeebus, I don’t want to say that this is the best album of the Murray/Godfrey collaboration era but hot damn if it isn’t close. “The Sky” adds to that argument along with the piano-driven “What Would You Say” and its’ record scratch beats. As an outsider, I don’t pretend to know what Murray and Godfrey’s musical vision might be but I imagine that this record is the closest accomplishment towards that.

If you love that voice and that guitar and have followed these gentlemen from Ultraspank to Lo-Pro to this then this is an essential part of your collection. If you’re a fan of music in general then it’d be highly illogical if you don’t pick this up.

The Theory Of Everything is out on August 26th. We really think you should buy it here.

 

Ravioli Me Away release The Inevitable Album!

Ravioli-Me-Away-resized

Like Devo fronted by Kathleen Hanna, Ravioli Me Away brings something different to the music table. This post-punk trio are about to make waves on their debut, The Inevitable Album, with a sound that is so out there it’ll make even the naysayers perk up and pay attention.

“Good Team Player” is as good an introduction as any into the world of Ravioli Me Away with synth horns and steady beats. Lead single “Cat Call” is just as strange as the video that accompanies it with a strong message (Don’t be an asshole when ladies are walking down the street, fellas!). “One Kiss” has a ’50’s feel to it as does “Romance Amnesia” with shared vocals, one spoken word and one providing the melody, and a simple yet effective snare and bass line.

That’s one of the great things about Ravioli Me Away, though, is that the concept is so basic (Bass, drums, keys) but the layers that Sian Dorrer, Rosie Ridgeway, and Alice Theobald bring to each song catapults The Inevitable Album above the rest.

Other highlights include “Estrogen” (Pronounced “eeeeee-stroh-gen” here) with  its funkified bass that continues into the spoken wordiness of “Imagination” which synths up the proceedings while later “Euro Breakdown” makes a bid for “Best instrumental score from a Miami Vice montage scene”.

The Inevitable Album is out on August 18th through Good Job Records. Head on over to Raviolimeaway.co.uk and their Facebook page for the deets!