Saturday, 29 December 2018

AVER - Orbis Majora (Album Review)

Release date: January 18th 2019. Label: Ripple Music. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Orbis Majora – Tracklisting

1. Feeding the Sun
2. Disorder
3. The Last Goat Out of Pompeii
4. Unanswered Prayers
5. Hemp Fandango


Luke: Guitar
Jed: Bass
Henry: Drums
Burdt - Guitar/Vocals


Aussie Psych Stoner Rockers AVER return with their new album Orbis Majora and it’s a decidedly different affair compared to their previous albums. As this album has a more progressive and experimental sound that I didn’t initially expect. The added use of different instruments such as violins and cello is a superb touch and gives AVER’s music much more depth than ever before.

The album does take some time to fully get going and for the heavy riffs to appear. AVER continue their progressive space rock journey they started almost eight years ago on their acclaimed debut album which had elements of Grunge, Psych and Hard Rock buried under the expansive rock/metal sound the band created even back then. AVER sound wonderfully different on Orbis Majora as they add a TOOL-esque progressive delivery to their music that still offers moments of pure psychedelic bliss.

Opening song – Feeding The Sun – is a ten minute plus epic which sees AVER play different aspects of Psychedelic Rock that ventures further into the Space/Stoner Rock spectrum. The song can be quite folk-orientated at times but that is a good thing as this allows the listener to fully appreciate AVER’s sound even more. The song almost loses its way towards the end but it’s the sheer size and scope of AVER’s music that makes this song an absolute delight to listen to. As you don’t know which musical direction AVER will take you next. Truth be told I don’t think they know either.

Second song – Disorder – opens with a more laid-back psychedelic sound that’s played quite casually. However this all builds upto to a thundering wall of seventies inspired Space/Stoner Rock goodness that’s quite dramatic and trippy in all the right places. The vocals from Burdt are superb and become louder and more passionate as the song reaches its natural and heavy progressive conclusion.

Third song – The Last Goat Out Of Pompeii – is a throwback to seventies prog-rock but with the added heavy modern Stoner Rock influences that AVER wisely bring to the table. This is one of the standout songs on the album with the Pink Floyd and TOOL influences shining through.

The final two songs – Unanswered Prayers and Hemp Fandango – offer almost twenty five minutes of the heaviest riffs contained on the album and sees AVER experiment with their sound even further and perhaps becoming more of a Heavy Space Rock sound than ever before. Hemp Fandango is perhaps the best song of the album as AVER become more confident and fully focused on creating a more comprehensive sound to immerse the listener with.

Overall, Orbis Majora is a wonderful and equally moving audio cinematic experience that will only enhance AVER’s reputation even further within the Psych/Stoner Rock scene.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Richard at Sheltered Life PR for the promo. Orbis Majora will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Ripple Music from Jan 18th 2019.


Thursday, 27 December 2018

News - EMBER announce 326: Spiritual Dialysis

EMBER announce 326: Spiritual Dialysis 

Throughout 2018 Crystal and Eric Bigelow of EMBER have continued to write music. They have been consistently brainstorming and amassing ideas, arranging and writing despite being deprived of having a full consistent band. It’s been an emotional and trialing year with the loss of musicians, the diagnosis of Eric’s Kidney Disease and surgeries. Despite the trials and tribulations, they have managed to amass a plethora of new material. 

Now, after a full year of absence and a full year since the release of 271, EMBER announce they have chosen a handful of songs that they will be recording in early February of 2019. 
The upcoming EP is entitled 326: Spiritual Dialysis and is to be recorded by Matt Washburn (Mastodon, Leechmilk, Norma Jean, Royal Thunder) at Ledbelly sound in Dawsonville Ga. Eric and Crystal Bigelow’s new musical compositions are weighty, inspired, emotional, expressive and brooding. 

They have created an exceptional landscape for Crystal’s well-known haunting vocals. They also have incorporated new elements to EMBER. Including (but not limited to) some menacing vocals laid down by Eric Bigelow. 

The artwork and track listing for the EP 326: Spiritual Dialysis will be revealed January 2019. The EP will be released March of 2019 with a video soon after to follow the release. 

All digital sales of the EP will go towards Eric Bigelow’s fund for Kidney transplantation.

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

Album Release News: COWBOYS & ALIENS Announce New Album - HORSES OF REBELLION

POLDER RECORDS is happy to announce the signing of Belgian’s finest stoner rock legends for their 5th full-length album ‘HORSES OF REBELLION’ out March, 2019.

Cowboys & Aliens is a four-piece stoner rock band from Bruges, Belgium. Formed in 1996, they released 4 full studio albums before falling into hiatus in 2006. The band reunited with the original lineup from ‘’ in 2011 with a brand new EP: “Sandpaper Blues Knockout” and gave a hell of a show at DesertFest Antwerp and opened up for Deep Purple (for the second time) at Vorst Nationaal. 
After playing countless festivals around Europe they released another EP in 2014: “Surrounded by Enemies” that took them once more to numerous stages in Belgium, Holland and Germany.
Now the time has come for their 5th full album: HORSES OF REBELLION to be released March 15th on POLDERRECORDS. The album was recorded and mixed by Pieter Nyckees at Shellshock Studio and mastered by Uwe Teichert at Elektropolis Brussels.

‘HORSES OF REBELLION’ is a classic guide on how to mix different styles into a breathtaking heavy cocktail. It’s all about melodic guitars and classic vocal harmonies, maintaining the riff-loaden grooves and ponderous rhythms Cowboys & Aliens are so well known for. 
‘HORSES OF REBELLION’ is a diverse album with some punk attitude injections, classic stoner rock and the heavy edge of nineties grunge … and even an acoustic masterpiece!

Prepare yourself for a trip loaded with heavy fuzz, riffs and catchy melodies.

Brace yourself for impact soon as the album will release digitally on Cowboys & Aliens Bandcamp and all streaming platforms March 1st, 2019 and get ready to groove along to an absolute monster of an album! CD and Vinyl release: March 15th, 2019.

PR018 - COWBOYS AND ALIENS - ‘HORSES OF REBELLION’, out on cd and vinyl March 15th 2019.


John Pollentier - Guitar
Henk Vanhee - Vocals
Peter Gaelens - Drums
Tom Neirynck - Bass

All songs written,arranged and produced by COWBOYS & ALIENS
All lyrics by Henk V.

Recorded and mixed at Shellshock Studio by Pieter Nyckees.
Mastered at Electropolis Brussels by Uwe Teichert.
Artwork by Sandy Verfaille (Inksane Tattoo)
Photos by Trees Rommelaere

Layout & design by Tom Maene and Henk V.

Track listing:

Side A
Soaking - 04:05
Still in the Shade - 03:37
Two Times a Man - 04:45
Sheep Bloody Sheep - 05:01
Take a Good Look Around - 04:22

Side B

Horses of Rebellion - 03:59
Morning Again - 04:14
Hollow - 03:42
Refuse - 03:11
Walk a Mile in my Shoes - 04:21
Splendid Isolation - 02:20

The Oil Barons - The West Is Won (Album Review)

Release date: Early 2019. Label: Self Released. Format: CD/DD

The West Is Won – Tracklisting

The Oil Baron
Snake Oil
California City
Fuck The Sun
Don’t Touch Me
Hot Cake
King Vulture
Suicide Machine


Lou Aquiler - Guitar
Andrew Huber - Bass/Lead Vocals
Jake Hart - Drums/Vocals


The Oil Barons debut album – The West Is Won is inspired by Paul Thomas Anderson classic movie There Will Be Blood. So you have a concept album based within the world of OIL PRODUCTION and all the joys and pitfalls that industry brings you. Unless it’s influenced by DALLAS and the guys are trying to be all intellectual. I’m kidding.

Anyway this is one album that sounds like it suffers from an identity crisis when you first listen to the album. As the band play a heavy mixture of Blues Rock, Classic Rock, Stoner Metal, Doom Metal and even Desert Rock. If you’re a fan of bands such as Black Sabbath and CLUTCH then these guys should definitely be on your radar.

The West Is Won a brilliantly entertaining album packed full of thrills and (oil) spills with the band writing some progressive sounding riffs and OTT lyrics to match. The opening songs The Oil Baron, Drill and Snake Oil show that The Oil Barons have a deep and rich creative sound and when matched against the superb lyrics then a Stoner Metal/Doom Metal album based on There Will Be Blood isn’t so crazy after all.

The album has a deceptively old-school feel to it and that allows The Oil Barons to experiment with their sound on the later stages of the album. The vocals from Andrew are influenced by the Americana scene at times but still remaining in the Doom/Stoner Metal world. Jake provides solid back-up vocals along with his highly accurate and precise drumming.

The Oil Barons continue playing their heavy Blues Rock inspired Stoner/Desert/Doom hybrid sound for the remainder of the album and they will keep you entertained with other cool songs such as California City, Fuck The Sun, VITCH and the final epic song Suicide Machine which ventures into some pretty dark places which I didn’t expect.

The production is handled superbly well and the album sounds fresh and lively from the start. The music is very direct and you become part of the whole environment. Though it may take you a few listens to fully understand and actually enjoy the overall album. After that happens you’ll be amazed at how much of a good time you will have this with album.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to The Oil Barons for the promo. The West Is Won will be available to buy on CD/DD in 2019.

Check out the awesome new video for VITCH from the forthcoming new album The West Is Won


Saturday, 22 December 2018

Steve Howe - Best Albums Of 2018

Here is my Top 25 Albums of 2018. It's been a great year for music and we couldn't run this blog without your support. Same goes for the bands, record labels and PR Reps who allows us to do what we do.

Thanks for all your support. It means a lot to us all.

Thanks to the entire team and the hard work they've put in over the last twelve months.

Roll on 2019!!!

Best Albums Of 2018
  1. Sleep - The Sciences 
  2. Boss Keloid - Melted On The Inch 
  3. High On Fire - Electric Messiah 
  4. YOB - Our Raw Heart 
  5. Weedpecker - III 
  6. Forming The Void - Rift 
  7. Bast - Nanoangstrom 
  8. OHHMS - Exist 
  9. Dead Now - Dead Now 
  10. CONAN - Existential Void Guardian 
  11. Yawning Man - The Revolt Against Tired Noises 
  13. Morag Tong - Last Knell Of Om 
  14. Black Rainbows - Pandaemonium 
  15. Belzebong - Light The Dankness 
  16. Estuary Blacks - Estuary Blacks 
  17. Fu Manchu - Clone Of The Universe 
  18. Monster Magnet - MindFucker 
  19. Orphans Of Doom - Orphans Of Doom 
  20. Sergeant Thuderhoof - Terra Solus 
  21. Henry Blacker - The Making Of Junior Bonner 
  22. River Cult - Halcyon Daze 
  23. Barbarian Hermit - Solitude And Savagery
  24. Domkraft - Flood 
  25. Earthless - Black Heaven

Håkan Nyman - Best Albums Of 2018

1. Pale Divine - Pale Divine
2. Forming The Void - Rift
3. Boss Keloid - Melted On The Inch
4. Kingnomad - The Great Nothing
5. Joecephus And The George Jonestown Massacre - Death Rattle Shake
6. Ozone Mama - Cosmos Calling
7. Craneium - The Narrow Line
8. Flummox - Intellectual Hooliganism
9. Plainride - Life On Ares
10. Lord - Desperation Finds Hunger In All Men

End of the year lists are always fun to compile but also a general pain in the ass. Simply because the older <I get the harder it is to remember all the new album’s I am fortunate to listen to every year. This year, however, that wasn’t really a problem, instead the close line between positions 1-3 was the difficult part. Still, my heroes Pale Divine held out for number one with their brand new amazing self-titled album. 

Forming The Void had to settle for a very close number two with ‘Rift’, while the truly breathtaking Brits Boss Keloid claimed an even closer number three. All the other releases on my list are wonderful recordings and deserve just as much accolade, however, when lists like this are made, some albums has to settle for a lower position when they should rank higher. 

Hope all you readers enjoy this!


Håkan Nyman

Todd Stealey - Best Albums Of 2018

Greetings All,

All in all a pretty killer year for Rock. After a ton of listening and some serious self editing. Here are my 25 favs of the year. Enjoy!

1. Haunt - Burst into Flame
2. High on Fire - Electric Messiah
3. Backwoods Payback - Future Slum
4. Sleep - The Sciences
5. Beastmaker - eps 1-8
6. Brundle Haze - Zardoz
7. Yob - Our Raw Heart
8. Saint Karloff - All Heed the Black God
9. Monster Magnet - Mindfucker
10. Brant Bjork - Mankind Woman
11. Black Lab - Under the Strawberry Moon 2.0
12. Burn Ritual - Blood of the Raven
13. Melvins - Pinkus Abortion Technician
14. Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats - Wasteland
15. Alastor - Slave to the Grave
16. Conan - Existential Void Guardian
17. Domkraft - Flood
18. Corrosion of Conformity - No Cross, No Crown
19. Graveyard - Peace
20. Mos Generator - Shadowlands
21. Greenleaf - Hear the Rivers
22. Clutch - Book of Bad Decisions
23. Druglord - New Day Dying
24. Black Label Society - Grimmest Hits
25. Black Rainbows - Pandaemonium

- Todd S

Instagram @alltheghoststhathauntyou