Venus Sleeps – Dead Sun Worship (2016), Brigantia – Midnight (2015)

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Venus SleepsDead Sun Worship (on cassette via Tartarus Records, 22 March 2016; originally released 13 March 2015)

 

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Brigantia – “Midnight” (self-released, 28 May 2015)

 

Hello out there, and good afternoon! Hope your week is going well — as for myself, I’m just relieved that it’s halfway over. Anyway, I’ve been planning on telling you about the debut album by Irish psychedelic doom band Venus Sleeps, which has been out for a while now but I just discovered it when it was re-released by Tartarus Records last week.

Well today that’s just what I’m going to do, except that I also decided to throw in an extra treat for you all: a song that was put out last spring by another Irish doom band, Brigantia, which you can download for free. Think of it as kind of a bonus track at the end of the article. I’ve got a feeling you’ll enjoy both of these …

 

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Borracho Kick Off Their First-Ever European Tour!

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Borracho Kick Off Their First-Ever European Tour!

 

Okay folks, you know the drill by now. I’ve been talking about Borracho for years. Obviously I’m a big fan of these Washingtonian heavy-fuzzy-stoner-riff-rock dudes. And I’ve seen them every time they’ve come to Pittsburgh (twice in 2013, and then a third time about a month ago). But despite all that, at their most recent show (22 March 2014 at The Shop, along with Neon Warship from Dayton, and Pittsburgh’s own Carousel), they somehow managed to exceed all my expectations. All three guys seemed to be on fire that night, and the crowd seemed equally enthusiastic. If this trio is bringing that kind of energy with them across the Atlantic, I fully expect they’ll be making some huge waves all over Europe in the coming week and a half. Scroll down for a full list of their across-the-pond tour dates.

 

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Review: Borracho – Oculus

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BorrachoOculus (digital version self-released 18 July 2013 | vinyl edition released December 2013 on No Balls Records (Germany) / Strange Magic Records (US) / AM Records (Japan))

 

Hey there, readers. There’s been a bunch of great music released this week, and I can’t wait to share it with you! I’ll get to that very soon. First, there’s something else I’ve been meaning to tell you all about for months and I really don’t want to let it wait any longer. Those of you who’ve been around here a while will surely remember Borracho: I’ve been way into this band ever since I stumbled upon Splitting Sky, their debut album, back in 2011, which immediately found its way onto my list of the best releases of that year. For those who haven’t been paying attention, it doesn’t take much research to find that I’ve written about them or mentioned them quite a few times since then. Just something about those heavy-as-balls riffs and mind-bending instrumental passages really grabs my attention and refuses to let go.

So anyway, naturally, after a series of vinyl reissues and 7″ singles and 10″ singles, the news that these guys were releasing a second album of brand-new material would be very exciting to me. Combined with the fact that the band swung by my city for the first time ever — and the second time ever — all within the past year, yeah I’d say I was pretty thrilled. That new album — Oculus — was unleased (online) on the same day as Borracho‘s second Pittsburgh show of the year, which was mid-July 2013, and so I’ve been listening to it ever since then (and, as you may recall, history repeated itself as it was also included on my list of last year’s best albums). I did start writing about it around the time it was released, intending to publish this review before I went to the show that night, but something came up — I think work was especially busy that week or something. Then for most of the rest of the year I was frozen in Carbonite. I dunno, I have no excuses, really. But that’s why, like I said, I want to bring this album to your attention as soon as possible.

 

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The List of 2013 Year-End Lists

Photo Collage - 2013 Shows - by Asya Yanyo

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Hey folks — a very Happy (Belated) New Year to all of you! 2013 definitely turned out to be an interesting year for me, with lots of big changes, new projects, new responsibilities, etc., but an unfortunate side-effect of some of that was (as you’ve surely noticed) that the amount of time I’d been spending writing really tapered off as the year went on, to the point where I didn’t post
anything here for the last few months! Well, as you may have seen, I’ve started writing reviews of some new 2014 releases — and as time allows I promise I will also be sharing plenty of older stuff I’ve missed writing about, because believe me there has been a TON worth sharing!

But more on that later. As I started doing last year, I’ve once again put together a collection of various people’s “best of” lists from 2013. Admittedly I sort of got a late start on this (I didn’t even put out the open invitation until after most websites had already finished with publishing all their year-end stuff), but several people have answered the call and contributed some really interesting lists that you’ll want to check out…

 

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VOS Videography 2013: A Mid-Year Retrospective (Part 11)

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Howlers Coyote Cafe (Bloomfield / Pittsburgh, PA), 28 March 2013

 
Low Man – “Golden Dawn”

 
Low Man – “Last of the Rat Kings”

 
Rice Cultivation Society – “Sky Burial”

 
Rice Cultivation Society – “Bunny in the Sun”

 
Dewey Marquee – the one that’s all jazzy and shit

 
Dewey Marquee – the corniest thing…

 

Howlers Coyote Cafe (Bloomfield / Pittsburgh, PA), 29 March 2013

 
Borracho – “Stockpile” (New Song)

 
Been Obscene – “Demons”

 
Been Obscene – “Pilot the Pirates” (New Song)

 
Neon Warship – “Paralyzed”

 
Neon Warship – “In Waves”

 
Supervoid – “The Bear”

 
Supervoid – “Ride the Snake” (B&W video)

 
Supervoid – “Ride the Snake” (color video)

 
NAVIGATION
 
Part 1 (28 December – 18 January)
Part 2 (01 – 09 February)
Part 3 (16 February)
Part 4 (22 February)
Part 5 (23 February)
Part 6 (02 – 09 March)
Part 7 (10 March)
Part 8 (14 March)
Part 9 (16 March)
Part 10 (22 – 24 March)
 
Part 12 (02 – 11 April)
Part 13 (12 – 19 April)
Part 14 (20 – 26 April)
Part 15 (04 – 05 May)
Part 16 (11 – 17 May)
Part 17 (18 – 27 May)
Part 18 (31 May – 20 June)
Part 19 (23 – 30 June)

Borracho – Mob Gathering 7″

Borracho - Mob Gathering 7- - cover

 
It’s been nearly two years since Borracho, the heavy stoner-fuzz-rock band from Washington DC, graced the world with their debut album Splitting Sky. Since that LP was released (and subsequently landed on my Top 11 of 2011 list), there has also been a 7″ single (and video) for “Concentric Circles”, a video for “All in Play”, and a 10″ single for “Plunge/Return” (which was included in the digital and CD versions, but didn’t fit on the vinyl pressing of Splitting Sky).

Now, all that has been really cool, but we haven’t heard any NEW songs in a while! Well as it turns out, that’ll be changing soon, because in a few months the band will have a follow-up album out…

 

[In mid-February], we entered the studio to lay down brand new music for a proper follow-up release. We’ve reunited with Splitting Sky producer Frank Marchand at his brand new Hudson Street Sound studio in Annapolis MD. The as-yet untitled record will be co-released on limited edition 12″ vinyl by No Balls Records (Germany) and Ghost Highway Recordings (Spain) in June.

 
So that’s pretty exciting, huh? But that’s not even all of the good news I have for you! Although it’ll still be a few more months ’til we get some new material, right now you can get treated to some OLD stuff — plus select east-coast cities are due to be visited by the band this weekend!

 
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The Huge List of 2012 Year-End Lists!

Well, friends, here we find ourselves in the waning moments of 2012. It’s been an interesting, eventful year that’s had lots of high and low points — a ton of excellent new music has been released and quite a few brand-new bands have emerged that I’d fully expect to be making some serious waves in the near future.

One of the best things about 2012, for me personally, was that I found myself (and my wife) going to lots more shows than in recent years, and as a result I’ve been fortunate to meet a lot of new people — as well as starting to take a way more active role in the local music scene.

Anyway, a few weeks ago I had a suggestion from one of those people I’ve gotten to know in the past year (I won’t say who — he said he preferred not to be given credit for the idea, although I will say that it’s somebody who contributed to this). The idea was to collect top-ten lists from various folks in the Pittsburgh metal community.

So I put out an open invitation for any musicians or other people who are involved in the scene in some way — I was looking for anything, whether it was the traditional “Top Ten Albums” or something totally off-the-wall like someone’s ten favorite sandwiches they ate during the year. Really, the only rules were that it had to be a list, and involve something from 2012.

 
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