Monday, 22 May 2017

VOKONIS - The Sunken Djinn (Album Review)

Release date: June 09th 2017. Label: Ripple Music. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

The Sunken Djinn – Tracklisting

The Sunken Djinn
Calling From The Core
The Coldest Night
Blood Vortex
Architect Of Despair


Guitar & Vocals - Simon
Drums - Emil
Bass - Jonte


You can never keep a good band away and that is especially true for Swedish Doomsters - Vokonis - who are about to release their new second full length album on Ripple Music. The Sunken Djinn. Coming almost fifteen months after their celebrated debut album - Olde One Ascending. The Sunken Djinn is a better-rounded and doomier affair with the previous albums Stoner sounds giving way to a more psychedelic and sludgier groove. You can still hear that addictive Vokonis groove first heard on their debut album. The album has a more intense heavy metal feel with Vokonis taking influence from classic eighties sounding heavy metal artists at times.

Opening track - The Sunken Djinn - has recently been released as seven inch single which sold out in double quick time. Vokonis have a slight nautical feel to their music on this song with the music being merged with a deep nautical influence. The lyrics and vocals are superbly put together and they have a cool understated feel to them. Though it's the riffs and Simon's near pitch perfect vocals add a real sense of importance and urgency to the overall flow of the album.

The opening track sets the scene for the remainder of the album to follow with songs such as Calling From The Core, The Coldest Night, Blood Vortex and Architect Of Despair. The songs run between the four minute to six minute mark and this allows Vokonis to explore and experiment more with their more progressive sounds. Especially with the albums psychedelic sounds as it adds a more world weary feel to the album.

The production is handled superbly well and that is what you expect from a Ripple Records release. When have those guys ever released a bad sounding record. I can't think of any. The Sunken Djinn is a doom metal album in every sense of the term and this is an album that will no doubt send Vokonis onto greater things. Vokonis take influence from their musical heroes and you can hear familiar sounds but Vokonis still manage to create their own sound.

The band becomes permanent doom dwellers with the music nightmarish in scope. Sue the last song - Maelstrom - embraces a less enjoyable dronish aspect but that doesn't stop Vokonis becoming one of the best upcoming bands within the Doom Metal world. High praise. Maybe, but Vokonis have delivered the goods with this album. Fans of Black Sabbath, High On Fire and Mastodon will find much to admire and riff-worship here.

Vokonis have delivered not only of the year's best Doom Metal album but perhaps one of the best albums of the year.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Richard at Sheltered Life PR and Vokonis for the promo. The Sunken Djinn will be available to buy via Ripple Music from June 09th 2017 on CD/DD/Vinyl.


The Ditch And The Delta - Hives In Decline (Album Review)

Release date: May 12th 2017. Label: Battleground Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Hives In Decline – Tracklisting

1.Hives In Decline 06:55
2.Fuck On Asphalt 05:57
3.Sleeping Dogs 04:41
4.Dry Land 02:01
5.Till Body Quits 04:44
6.Mud 04:57
7.Dread Spectacle 05:36


Elliot Secrist-Guitars, samples, vocals
Charles Bogus-Drums
Kory Quist-Bass, vocals


The Ditch And The Delta are a band I hadn't heard of before. They've been compared to a wave of different legendary artists within the Sludge Metal field. Though I feel on their new album - Hives In Decline - the band creates their own unique sound. Parts Noise Rock, Sludge, Doom and Post-Metallic sounds. Hives In Decline is built upon math-rock like progression and that allows the band to create heavy melodic sludgier moments with fantastic punk/metal vocals.

Opening track - Hives In Decline - is a confident and self-assured slice of pure punk/noise-rock driven sound. The song has moments of psychedelic sludge/doom based grooves that remind me of Kowloon Walled City in parts that are merged with the post-theatrical sounds of Neurosis. The album has a gloomy and despairing outlook on life and it all starts with this great song.

Second track – Fuck On Asphalt - sees the band opt for a more Sludge Rock driven sound. It's a more grown-up sound compared to the opening track and the thumping bass lines add an unsettling feel with The Ditch And The Delta delivering a more post-punk sound especially with the vocals. The album may sound and feel under-produced at first, though with a few more listens of the album, you soon start to become more aware of the murky atmosphere the band have created on the album. The different genres and sounds held within the album have hidden meaning that you may miss the first time you listen to the album.

The album then returns to a more traditional Sludge Metal sound with songs such as: Sleeping Dogs, Dry Land and Till Body Quits - carrying on the expert sludge/doom delivery of the opening two tracks. Hives In Decline ranks as an uncompromising blend or pure rock/metal aggression and this band has a lot to say.

It's a shame the album only lasts for thirty five minutes or so. As the album suddenly ends. I wanted a couple of more songs from The Ditch And The Delta. Maybe I'm being slightly greedy there. The Ditch And The Delta aren't afraid to experiment with their sound and matching their noise/sludge hybrid sound with moments of Americana which you can hear on the excellent song - Dry Land.

This album is already starting to win plaudits within the Doom/Sludge Metal world and it's not hard to see why. The Ditch And The Delta have delivered a hard-hitting and uncompromising album that packs an almighty punch.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Earsplit PR for the promo. Hives In Decline is available to buy now via Battleground Records on CD/DD/Vinyl.


Sunday, 21 May 2017

A Review of ARGONAUTA FEST 3 by Bruno Bellisario

When, a few days ago, I proposed to Steve this article/report, I regretted it immediately, thinking that maybe it was not the case and could be too self-referential. Then, I thought about it better, cold in mind, and I was told, probably, it is only the point of view of one who, at 40, is taking some small satisfactions away, such as playing in a band, making records, going around concerts, touring.

From my point of view, I can only appreciate the effort that hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the world make every day to allow as many as a hundred bands (including Dustrider, of course) to emerge from the limbo where they are confined. Of course, I am aware of the dynamics that often hide behind this, but this is not the place to talk about.

Big or small they are, festivals are, without doubt, one of the most important moments of aggregation, where people are assembled by a single major common denominator, music. Desertfest, Hellfest, Roadburn, Wacken are just some of the biggest European festivals where any band in the world would like to participate and where, most likely, they will never take part. But it does not matter. Each country has an innumerable number of small realities where one can express its creativity.

Names such as Argonauta Fest, Heavy Psych Sounds Fest, Pietrasonica, Sweet Leaf Festival, SoloMacello Fest, Burning Ruins, are just some of the most important festivals in Italy that can move the underground world we all need. On Saturday, May 12th I was, in the double role of spectator and musician, at the Argonautafest. What to say. There was an experience I would call it necessary.

Necessary because it allowed us to play with so many great bands with which we might never have played. Necessary because it allowed us to give a face and a voice to all those people who, until then, were just pixels on the screen. Necessary because allowed to touch with a hand a reality made of hopes, passion, blows, professionalism and friendship.

Foto di Giovanni Salinardi

The management of the event, from the audience point of view, was simply perfect. The comfortable venue (Officine Sonore, Vercelli) have been the perfect location to hold the event, with a perfect acoustics, being a non-dispersive place that can accommodate the right number of people. On this occasion, Argonauta has given way to some of its roster bands to present themselves in the best way, thanks to 40 minutes of live set that brought on 8 bands featuring completely different sounds, from stoner to heavy psych, through sludge and post metal.

Having to play around midnight, I've had the opportunity to enjoy the first bands that, despite the ‘tea time’, have been spent as if they were playing as head-liners at the main stage of the HELLFEST.

NO GOOD ADVICE was called to a hard test, having to open in the afternoon with a still small audience who, in any case, participated with transport to their show. Heroic. The NAAT, coming upstage later on, literally bent the air with a fresh and original sludge/psych as it had just felt. THE BUCKLE were, for me, a real surprise. A duo (guitar and drum) with its roots in a sound that closely remind QOTSA and EODM. The sound went slowly to darker and heavier territories, passing through the post-metal of OTUS and the percussive and violent sludge of NUDIST, until the post elaborations of VAREGO.

One of the most beautiful aspects (at least for me) of these festivals is the opportunity to listen to groups that I might have had difficulty listening, simply because I did not know them. It was the case of the head-liners EYES FRONT NORTH, a Parisian sludge metal/post-hardcore quartet that literally amazed me for their music made of so much psychedelia. We played in the middle and from the point of view of the band, the organization was perfect. No difficulties, quality back-lines, line-check that sounded more like a sound check for how beautiful the sound came out, thanks also to the great sound engineer. 

About our performance I do not pronounce, of course. We had a lot of fun and I saw the audience as well. Audiences and bands have shared hours of pure fun, thanks to the high quality of musicians that hit the stage. The overall feeling of the whole day was more than pleasant, in an atmosphere that, for both the audience and the bands, went beyond the mere participation. It was a true family celebration.

Let me make a special applause to the Argonauta Records. It is not for flattery. It's not because our label. It's not because Gero is a friend. It is not for any of these reasons. It is for the people, whoever they are, Argonauta or not, that blow continuously, day after day, to pull out something good from that rot that has become the Italian music scene. Making music becomes more and more difficult, day after day, due to an unwelcome general disinterest combined with a lack of space that inevitably leads to a general sense of overcrowding.

Of course, nothing is perfect, but there are people out there who invest their lives for something they really like to do, which fortunately allows them to live, but that keeps alive those creativity that we often need.

Fortunately, small realities save us. Long life the underground.

Words by Bruno Bellisario

Argonauta Records Links:

Dustrider Links:

Sunday, 14 May 2017

An Interview with Sam Hart from ELEPHANT TREE

The story of Elephant Tree (UK) started in around 2013, when four young gentlemen from London made up their minds to create a stoner doom band. Jack Townley took the responsibility for guitars and vocals, Sam Hart took percussion, Riley MacIntyre discovered his talent in singing and playing sitar, and Peter Holland took the role of bass player and vocalist (as he was already doing the same in another band: Trippy Wicked & the Cosmic Children of the Knight).

Their version of doom stoner is dark, deep and natural in wide sense. Slow flow of spleen takes you off and plunge in aphotic world of strange trees and thick riffs. Elephant Tree released their sophomore album April 2016, so I’ve decided to ask them if new material is already in progress. Sam replied to my request, and the result of our conversation is right before you now.

Hello Sam! How are you? What’s going on in the shadows of Elephant Tree?

Hi Aleks! I’m good thanks, as are the rest of the guys. We’ve just been in the studio again recently preparing some final touches to our track for the Planet Of Doom film. Can’t wait to get it sent over and see the finished thing!

Planet of Doom? I heard something about few months ago… It’s some DIY fantastic movie about doom music?

Yeah, that’s right. The guy running it is David Paul Seymour, who some people will immediately recognize as the creator of some of the best album covers in the scene. It’s going to be this awesome collective of artists and bands telling a story through music and artwork. You can hit up more details over here .

Well, I didn’t prepare and don’t know how you did figure out the band’s name. So can you enlighten me – what did you put in the image of Elephant Tree?

It’s actually a bit of an anticlimactic story really. We were trying to figure out a good band name that hadn’t already been used and didn’t sound too cheesy, so we decided to try looking at book titles. I just googled ‘fucked up books’ and there it was on the list at number 53 or something. The Elephant Tree by R. D. Ronald. We didn’t even look what it was about before deciding to stick with it. I think I’m the only one in the band who’s read it. It’s not too bad actually…

Your debut record “Theia” was released in 2014, and even for the first record you chosen James Plotkin to do mastering of your material. Was it a part of your plan? How did you see Elephant Tree’s right sound back then?

When we first decided to record we had no money, had only played a few gigs, and were working on the songs still. We decided that the sound we wanted to go for was a raw ‘rough and ready’ kind of sound. Basically to reflect that we were fairly new and also because we were all broke! We ended up getting into Sam Thredder’s (Slabdragger) studio. It’s this cool tiny set up he has in his attic that we barely all fitted into at the same time. Sam’s great at working with new bands and had us re-working and tweaking the tracks as we went along. I think as a band we learnt a lot over that weekend about how we wanted to progress and build for the next album. Sam suggested we ask James to master the album and put us in contact. He just seems to have the talent to make anything sound crushingly heavy.

Was it expensive to record the first album?

Theia wasn’t expensive at all really. Sam understands the struggle of new bands trying to get recorded so sorted us out with a really good offer. To be honest though, it wasn’t really about the money at that point, more about getting someone who would understand the genre.

Elephant Tree - Attack of the Altaica

I guess that it was good for the band that you found Magnetic Eye Records pretty soon and they released the album both as CD and vinyl. Consider promotion side… does it change situation that you’re based in UK and the label is from USA?

It does get difficult sometimes. I think the hardest thing is us being able to show the guys what we’re working on and work on ideas for promotions, because of the time difference and not being able to be there in person. The distance and time gap also means it takes a while to get replies and organize things, but they do get sorted in the end.

The sophomore album shows natural development of the band though core components of the debut album are on their places. How would you determine direction in which the band moved from “Theia” to “Elephant Tree”?

We had more time together as people. After a while you get to really know your band mates and the things that make them tick while playing live or recording. Also going on tour helps you develop. Just spending time and listening to each other’s favorite tracks helps understand what elements each of you want to bring into our own music. I know my drumming skills developed a lot and Jack and Pete both honed their tones and styles into something that just felt comfortable and right.

Riley was the one who made bigger suggestions of change. He really stepped back from the writing and live performances to focus on his career working at The Church Studios so the rest of us had to re-group and come up with a set of new material that didn’t rely heavily on Riley’s live involvement. Then we took it into the studio and he either loved it or told us that it needed to change. It helps having someone who isn’t married to the ideas you come up with when a riff gets played for the very first time. It also helps if that person is certified ‘exceptional talent’ as well…

Speaking about you “had more time together” – do you mean drinking and smoking? Some of your songs have thick psychedelic vibe; so do substances help sometimes?

I mean just generally hanging out. I don’t know where this whole ‘oh yeah we’re really cool because we always hang out and smoke weed all the time’ image comes from. I think it’s more closely associated with the states where it’s generally a bit more accepted. We just go get trashed in Wetherspoons.

(NOTE – Wetherspoons is a UK chain of Pubs and Bars around the UK)
Your material is balanced combination of different sonic experiments: doom elements, a bit of psychedelic and post influences. How did you invent this blend?

It really came out of each of us liking a wide variety of music. We all listen to a lot of different genres, for instance, Jack listens to a lot of folk music and Gary Newman, which means one day he might come in and say ‘It’d be cool to do a weird thing with sung choral harmonies over a distorted synth’. Then we work on making that work with whatever me and Pete have brought in before taking it to Riley and asking him to make it happen in the studio.

Was this formula calculated? How did you get that this sort of vocals work well with such music? And sitar, how did you decided to leave it amongst your tools?

It’s not calculated at all. We just try make things interesting. There are a lot of good Doom/Stoner/whatever metal bands out there now, and they all do what they do very well, but we just decided that we’d rather be a bit different and make something we found interesting. The sitar came about because Riley brought it with him to his first band practice and we all felt bad about telling him to take it home again. It looked quite heavy.

Another feature of Elephant Tree is deep melancholic mood, some sort of spleen, what kind of emotions do you tend to put in your songs?

We try to mix it up a bit. It’s quite difficult sometimes to not come across as a miserable bastard, as the genre tends to lend its self towards the gloomy side of life. I guess that’s why they call it Doom and not Rainbow metal…

You have a pair of good poetic finding on the second album, what can you tell about songs like “Aphotic Blues” and “Surma”?

As with most of our songs, the musical content comes first and then we play around with a theme that we think would fit the mood of the music. Playing around with melody ideas for a while usually brings some lyrical ideas and then we run with that. I don’t like to give too much away about the themes of our songs really as it’s better if everyone has their own interpretations, some interesting and some hilarious.

The second Elephant Tree’s album was released almost one year ago, can you already tell something about new material?

We are in the stage of writing new tracks at the moment and aren’t far off having a few finished musically already. Its never healthy to set a stern time limit on things as we want to work on stuff until we feel we’ve done the best we can with it, but we have set a goal of having a new release recorded before the year is out.

How do you see band's prospects consider further sonic development? Do you have an ultimate goal?

There is no plan or ultimate goal really, just to keep experimenting. We all have different ideas but at the same time we aren’t afraid to tell someone the noise they are making is shit.

Is it necessary to experiment further? I’m meaning that the second album is just really damn good one, I wonder that else could be added to such stuff…

We are looking at always changing what we do to keep it fresh for the fans and us. Playing the same style of stuff over and over takes it’s toll and when it no longer becomes fun then that’s it, the effort drops and the music suffers. That’s not to say we’ll be going drastically different, Jack can always release his K-Pop tracks as a solo project.

You're from London, and local rock scene is just huge. How did you find your own place there? Is it easy to find venue for Elephant Tree's live practices?

Having Pete in the band helps with this. He’s a bit of a celebrity on the scene, so he knows loads of the other bands and people involved in putting on shows. There’s also an amazing community vibe that goes on. Bands message other bands and get each other shows and generally just help each other out. There are very few ‘big egos’ which helps.

You mean that Pete is famous dude because of Trippy Wicked & the Cosmic Children of the Knight, right? How do they gain the recognition? And why didn’t Pete share this secret with you still?

Pete is just known for being Pete. Trippy are doing really well but he’s always at gigs and just seems to know everyone. There really wasn’t any secret to tell, he’s like magnet when it comes to attracting conversations in bars.

How often do you receive feedback from people? Is it enough intensive to motivate you move further?

Honestly, not as much as you would imagine. People will come up after shows and we get a lot of reviews but not many people will tell you when they have an issue with a song or there’s something they didn’t like. None of it really changes our views on things anyway, for me personally it’s a bonus that people dig what we do, I mainly do it because it’s something I enjoy.

Okay, Sam, then I hope that this interview will help us to spread the word about Elephant Tree further and you find more careful listeners through it. Let’s sum up – what’s band’s general sacred message?

“Where’s the Spoons?”

Words by Aleks Evdokimov and Sam Hart


BEASTMAKER - Inside The Skull (Album Review)

Release date: May 19th 2017. Label: Rise Above Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Inside The Skull – Tracklisting

Evil One
Heaven To Hell
Now Howls The Beast
Of God’s Creation
Give Me A Sign
Nature Of The Damned
Psychic Visions
Inside The Skull
Night Bird
Sick Sick Demon


Trevor William Church - Guitar, Vocals...
Andres Alejandro Saldate (Juan Bonham) - Drums..
John Tucker – Bass


Greetings all,

Over the past couple of weeks I have given multiple listens to the new album by the Fresno, CA based Sabbath worshipping Hellions Beastmaker. Honestly, to call them Sabbath worshipping may not even be a strong enough description. You may ask yourself, if another Sabbath-esque sounding band is a good thing. It isn't a good a thing...It is a fucking great thing!

Beastmaker hits the darkest, doomiest, occult rock swagger possible. Inside the skull is both an homage and an evolution on the sound we all know and love. The only way I can think to say is that they absolutely, fucking killed it! They have studied, made the beast, and unleashed it on the world. So all you have to do is sit back and let it consume you.

The record sounds perfect. It is not over produced, not under produced, the sound and tone is spot on. The track list is perfect. They have modernized the sound of Ozzy-era Sabbath. The songs are amazing. Every track is filled with masterful riffs, they are catchy as hell, and filled with the kind of dark, sinister lyrics we all know and love. And dammit if vocalist/guitarist Trevor Church doesn't sound just like Ozzy. It is freaking eerie at times. The band is tight, the rhythm section of Andy Saldate and John Tucker are ferocious.

The record just oozes the big bass, drum and guitar sound that fills me with equal parts awe, jealousy, and appreciation for what I am hearing. The band has that unmistakable Sabbath sounds, but there are also elements of some of their past and present Rise Above label mates. There is some definite Electric Wizard heaviness along with some of Uncle Acid's creepy, garage psych fuzz.

Inside the Skull opens with a stunning 1-2 punch. Big drums and riffs open both Evil One and Heaven to Hell. These two lead into the dark ethereal sound of Now Howls the Beast, which features some absolutely stunning female vocals on the chorus. Of Gods Creation slows things down a bit, while still bringing the big doom laden riff. Give Me a Sign is probably the most Sabbath sounding vocal and is my favorite track. 

Nature of the Damned has a dare I say Alice in Chains vibe about it. Psychic Visions is an epic piece of doom and is followed by Inside the Skull which just continues the riff laden assault. Night Bird is a bit of a bombastic riff with a definite psychedelic tinge. The album closes with catchy, heavy bass chug of Sick Sick Demon.

Listen, I'm not going to say that if you like Black Sabbath you should check out Beastmaker. If you are reading this, you fucking love Sabbath. I will say that if you are in the mood or have ever wondered what Sabbath may have sounded like if they kept going (outside of 13...) you will want to check this out. I swear there are some absolutely eerie similarities. You will pick up parts that sound just like they fell out of the first 6. 

Dig it! Check this one out.

Words by Todd Stealey Instagram @alltheghoststhathauntyou

Inside The Skull will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Rise AboveRecords from May 19th 2017.


SautruS - Anthony Hill (Album Review)

Release date: May 12th 2017. Label: Pink Tank Music. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Anthony Hill – Tracklisting

1.The Way
2.Good Mourning 05:15
3.The Fungus
4.Cats On The Fence
5.Synopticon 08:40 video
6.Shotgun 08:57
7.When The War Is Over


Weno Winter- Vocals
Michał Nowak- Guitar
Piotr 'Ochota' Ochociński- Drums
Michał Młyniec - Bass


I've had SautruS new album Anthony Hill a while to review. The reason why I didn't review it sooner as I was sent a YouTube link to review. I'm not a fan of listening to reviews via YouTube. Watching the odd video here and there is cool but not reviewing albums. Anyway, I digress, Anthony Hill is a fairly complex and challenging album to listen to from the start.

This album owes a huge debt of gratitude to Prog Rock/Metal visionaries – TOOL. As the band focus more on progressive rock than the psychedelic stoner rock sound they made their name with on their last album. The vocals from Wemo impress from the word go as opening track – The Way – combines fuzz, psych, stoner and progressive sounds for a more refined sound.

The rest of the album follows a similar path to The Way with the band focusing heavily on their progressive rock sound. Songs such as Good Mourning, The Fungus, Cats On The Fence, Shotgun, and When The War Is Over all show that SautruS haven't left their trademark sound behind as you can still hear moments of Psychedelic Blues/Stoner Rock vibes that made their debut album such a winning record.

The production is pitch perfect and perhaps the albums main strength as the album does indeed sound incredible. You can experience every note played with precision and passion. Another highlight of the album is the whole experimentation of the entire album. SautruS merge different sounds to create a lucid psychedelic trippy ride into the unknown. Parts 60s Acid Rock and more modern based riffs should keep long-term Stoner Rock fans fully entertained.

Anthony Hill was an album I wasn't expecting from SautruS though I'm glad they have released a record such as this. It may not have the repeatability factor of their excellent debut album but it's a stronger album in every other sense. For that I applaud the band for releasing something different whilst challenging themselves both musically and artistically.

Words by Steve Howe

Anthony Hill is available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Pink Tank Records now.


Friday, 12 May 2017

STEAK - No God To Save (Album Review)

Release date: May 19th 2017. Label: Ripple Music. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

No God To Save – Tracklisting

2.Coke Dick
4.King Lizard
5.Living Like A Rat
7.Rough House
10.The Ebb


Kip, Cam, Reece, Sammy


The whole outlook for their new album No God To Save and for Steak themselves can be summed up in the opening moments of first track Overthrow, a series of blissed out and fuzzy riffs that creep along in a hazy but focused stance but then simply explode in a triumphant wave of fuzz laden brilliance.

It's this fuzz laden brilliance that is the key to Steaks outrageously fun music and it continues through No God To Save. From that starkly triumphant and unforgettable opener, the band are on an upward trajectory from which they threaten to never come down from, if you like your riffs meaty (no pun intended, meaty is the only way to describe Steak's riffs) then this is the album to listen to.

The tracks Coke Dick, Clones and King Lizard follow and all have that same blissed out feeling as the albums opener with riffs to match and an epic feel that threatens to burst out of the speakers at any point. The band like to keep the listener engaged and just when you think their music on this album can't get any better, the albums centrepiece, the monolithic Living Like A Rat emerges and consumes all in its path, with riffs that could destroy planets.

The tracks that follow especially Creeper and Wickerman are just as strong and the album has to be listened to as whole from start to finish to get its true value (no picking and choosing tracks here) and when the album winds up with the sublime The Ebb, you will be left in a state of riff appreciating awe and you can pick your head and your jaw off the floor.

Steak have a triumphant vibe about their music and you can't help but feel inspired when listening to their music and this is definitely feel good music in its purest form.

Bringing the Californian desert vibes to the U.K, Steak have created an album to be treasured with No God To Save and with the halfway point to this year rapidly upcoming, have made a strong and clear stake for the album of 2017, its that good so go get it, turn up loud and bask in its innate fuzzy glory.

Words by Gavin Brown

Thanks to Richard at Sheltered Life PR for the promo. No God To Save will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Ripple Music from May 19th 2017.


Jukebox Monkey - Grey Skies Red Planet (Album Review)

Release date: April 28th 2017. Label: Self Released. Format: CD/DD

Grey Skies Red Planet – Tracklisting

1.They're Building A Gallows 06:26
2.Death on Mars 04:18
3.Daughter and Heir 05:21
4.This Septic Isle 03:55
5.Liquid Mistress 06:34
6.Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue 04:58
7.Crawling as the Crow Flies 07:46
8.Divisions 07:04


Chris D- Vocals and guitar
Pete - Drums
Chris H- Guitar
Niki J - Bass


There is only one way to describe UK Stoner Metallers JUKEBOX MONKEY new album – Grey Skies Red Planet – and that is - FAN-FUCKING-TASTIC. It's very surprising that we haven't seen many reviews for this album as it's a great listen from start to finish with the band influenced by the classic sounds of Stoner Metal, Doom Metal and Heavy Metal. The vocals from Chris D really shine through especially on the opening track – They're Building A Gallows.

Fans of Kyuss, Desert Storm and Orange Goblin will find much to enjoy here. Though Jukebox Monkey add a more space rock vibe on songs such as Death On Mars, This Septic Isle, Liquid Mistress and Dictionary Of The Vulgar King. The instrumental work is another highlight of the album as these guys really know how to play their instruments to make an almighty impressive loud racket.

The album provides a true reflection on what to expect on the album. Epic riffs are the main order of business but this album has such an infectious groove that will soon have you under their spell. The lyrics even though way over the top at times, actually keep you entertained when merged with the heavy riffs.

Some people may think Jukebox Monkey don't offer anything new or original within the Stoner Rock/Metal scene. True, whilst that may be true in some aspects. You can't deny how exciting this album truly is. Jukebox Monkey wear their influences on their sleeves and they do it so well. The album has cool moments of Blues Rock appearing here and there.

It's the final two tracks – Crawling As The Crow Flies and Divisions – is where Jukebox Monkey excel at. As they offer 15 minutes of pure vintage Stoner Metal chaos and they leave you wanting more. The only downside of the album is that sometimes the production can be too loud at times and other times you want to hear more volume. It's only for a few moments but it shouldn't stop you enjoying this kick-ass album.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe


Olneya - S/T (EP Review)

Release date: Dec 30th 2016. Label: Self Released. Format: CD/DD

Olneya – Tracklisting

1.mantra 03:12
2.zerouno 06:16 due 04:48
4.Road to Aokigahara 01:50 tre 06:00


Maurizio Morea : guitars
Pj : drums
Enry Cava: bass


Olneya are an Instrumental Psych/Stoner Rock band from Italy. Their debut EP whilst not offering anything new does show that the band have keen eye for sonic experimentation. Influenced by bands such as Kyuss and Black Sabbath. Their music can be quite mellow at times but eerily heavy at the same time.

Opening track – Mantra – is a droned out/space rock song that is played at a slow pace. It would have been better if the band played a faster style of music on this track. Second track – zerouno – is a superb song that merges Desert Rock, Psych and Stoner Rock riffs with a gloomy based atmosphere.

Third track – zero due – carries on the heavy spaced out sound with the Olneya adding a more grunge style sound. The final two tracks – Road To Aokigahara and zero tre – sees the band creating their most experimental and perhaps best tracks on the EP. Especially with Road To Aokigahara, as it is a droned out desert rock/post-rock kind of sound.

The final song – zero tre – has a more natural flow and feel compared the other tracks. This is the song that I feel represents Olneya's true sound. The song felt like it had a beginning, middle and an end. If the band created more great songs such as this EP would be considered a great release instead of a solid and highly enjoyable one.

The other issue I have is the production. I know that Olneya are a DIY band and I applaud that. The issue I have with the EP is the volume of it all. It's far too low and there were moments I had to turn the volume to almost maximum levels on my laptop.

I don't want to be too hard on the band. As Olneya do have potential if they manage to release a better produced EP. I actually want to hear more music from Olneya as they have me intrigued in which direction they will go next.

Words by Steve Howe