Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Moss & Torture Wheel - The Bridge ov Madness

Well, wee ones, I must once again take a brief sabbatical from the Swamp, but as is tradition I leave you with a favorite to tide you over. Moss has appeared here before, and this split with similar-minded funeral doom purveyors Torture Wheel is among the best of their catalog. Here's what you're in for: crushing slowness, echoed wailing from the next dimension over, deeply occult and deliberately opaque themes, and a primordial moaning that seems to suggest continental drift more than the rhythm section of a band. Listen to this on repeat until I rejoin you upon Sunday and we shall discuss what you have learned.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Paul Cary - Ghost of a Man

Hm, I believe this is a free album so despite its recent vintage I shan't feel too bad about sharing it. Paul Cary, former frontman of punk band The Horrors (the good one, not the shitty British band), recorded this cobwebby, creaking album onto tape in the middle of a big echoey room, raw and honest. Blending blues, rockabilly, Tom Waits-ish clanking, lo-fi garage rock, and haunting country sounds into one dark, pungent stew, Ghost of a Man has been on constant rotation here in the Swamp lately. The mix of misanthropy and humor on these songs is perhaps their finest feature. Best line: “If it wasn’t for the devil, the Bible would be so boring.” Order vinyl and get a free download here or get it from Uncle Abdul here.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Wolves and Jackals - Demo

Taking the worst parts of black, thrash, and death metal and titty-twisting them into an unholy braid of ugliness, Atlanta's Wolves and Jackals were one of the best metal bands I saw live last year and remain on rotation to this very day. You can buy their album (and probably this demo as well) here. These three songs represent a mere sampling, but they are indeed most brutal and grim, yes indeedy.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Blind Willie Johnson

Ominous thunder and cold medication combine to cast an eerie pall over my evening, so I'll attempt to keep it brief. Blind Willie Johnson was a gospel street singer, possessor of a frightening rasp of a voice and razor-edged slide guitar, and the originator of songs as timeless as "Samson and Delilah" and "Nobody's Fault But Mine," who nonetheless led a short and brutal life. Legend has it that he started a riot on the steps of the New Orleans courthouse singing "If I Had My Way, I'd Tear This Building Down." His death is a particularly brutal story too: after his house caught fire while he was out busking, he was forced to sleep in the charred ashes of his bed during a monstrous thunderstorm. When he returned to the streets the next day he had full-blown pneumonia and died in a gutter. Of particular note to Swamp-o-philes are the delightfully Cthonian cautionary tale "God Moves on the Water" and the wordless wailing of "Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground." Chilling stuff.
Everybody wept when the war was on.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Throng of Shoggoths - Nauseated and Terrified for the Future

Well, this is certainly destined to end up here sooner or later, so let's just go ahead and get it on! Throng of Shoggoths is a sludgy doom monster from Alabama, dedicated to the Lovecraftian and the foul. Leaning heavily towards the obscenely slow but occasionally erupting into fierce and nasty hardcore, this unpredictable beast of a demo splits the difference between Buzzov*en-styled drug sludge, Swedish death/doom, and crusty crossover metal. Truly impressive; I have high hopes for these gentlemen in the future.
Buy here.
Ftagn here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


We have what I believe is a Swamp exclusive tonight, my little ones: the sole recording by defunct two-man cosmic psych unit Arena. Theirs is a difficult sound to summarize, with parts of it variously reminding me of Chrome or Krautrock or Hawkwind with the occasional Nick Blinko or robot vocal creeping up low in the mix. Of course there are also hints of Goblin and John Carpenter soundtracks - in fact several of these tracks appeared on the soundtrack to the low-budget horror flick Wanderlost. Most of the proggish tendencies are sublimated to open up space for the yawning atmospheric void and groovy rhythms. All in all it's a shame this project ended so quickly, but at least we have this relic from beyond space and time.
Bastards of the Omniverse

Monday, May 23, 2011

Mummies vs. Wolfmen

Another one from the crypts, today, intrepid explorers! This seven inch record contains two songs each from Swamp favorites The Mummies and their like-minded brethren The Wolfmen.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Daniele Luppi - An Italian Story

An Italian Story is a love note to Italian soundtrack music made with many of the core players on such famous films as The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly, notably the unmistakeable whistling stylings of Alessandro Alessandroni. The album shifts through diverse moods, from laid back summer hedonism to tense fight music and horrific psychedelia. Composer Luppi became famous for his collaborations with Danger Mouse but this fine little record seems to be out of print, making it Swamp fodder for sure.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Friday, May 20, 2011

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Los Punk Rockers

I don't know for sure, but this album seems to have the slimy fingerprints of schlock-meister El Chalpin all over it. Basically what we have is a complete re-recording of the Sex Pistols' Never Mind the Bullocks in bizarre Spanglish by a band of anonymous studio hacks. Chalpin, you may remember, was responsible for the vast ocean of posthumous Hendrix bootlegs as well as the notorious Thin Lizzy "Funky Junction" album and that psychedelic Chubby Checker record I posted a while back, among other things.

These recordings have an off-the-cuff, manic quality not present in the original album, likely due equally to the one-day recording turnover and the singer's shaky grasp of English and loose approximations of the chord progressions, which often sound like the work of some arty post-punk band. When paired with the tinny, trebly recording and hilariously misheard lyrics, we have an instant cult classic and proof that sometimes greed and cynicism can still produce great things, albeit inadvertently.
No Future in England's Greenland

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Runemagick - On Funeral Wings

I was going to post something entirely different, something quirky and breezy, but as night descends and temperatures drop to an unseasonable chill, it resonates hollowly and I find myself returning to the realms of doom and death. Runemagick is a long-running player in the death/doom game, predating the current boom by two decades, yet they haven't quite received their due in my opinion. Nevertheless, they grimly soldier on, producing album after album of dense, occult misery reeking of Armageddon. This particular example, their eighth LP from 2004, is a sprawling and ambitious epic incorporating many diverse influences without straying too far from its plodding, elephantine gait. Preceded by the more straightforward Darkness Death Doom, and followed by the more funereal Envenom, this full length reflects a murky high-water mark from a band who has yet to produce anything of less than excellent quality.
Black Star Abyss

Monday, May 16, 2011

Yonin Bayashi - Isshoku Sokuhatsu

Fusing the sounds of the wildest prog with the burgeoning movement that would become known as heavy metal, Japan's young quartet Yonin Bayashi would carve out a strange niche for themselves on the fringes of the music world. By turns melancholy or thunderous, Isshoku Sokuhatsu is their first and strongest album and flows from my speakers like warm sake. Stare into the eyes of the hypno-sloth:
Ping-Pong Dama no Nageki

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Moses - Changes

Bad vibrations rattling around in my skull tonight, tamed only by the sweet Danish thugs in Moses. This is dirty brown acid and homemade speed for slack-jawed fans of Blue Cheer, Crushed Butler, or Speed, Glue and Shinki. Caveman brows furrowed in frustration, beady eyes staring into the void, these subnormal hair farmers mix in some menacing jazz breaks and blues shuffle owing more to John Lee Hooker than Hendrix, but there's plenty of psychedelic weirdness for those late nights too. Refreshingly these all appear to be original songs, too, with nary a honkified Chuck Berry or Bo Diddley to be found.
Everything is Changed

Friday, May 13, 2011

Wooden Stake - Vampire Plague Exorcism

Wooden Stake plays a hybrid death-doom style that should please fans of Hooded Menace and Acid Witch and also fans of the recent crop of female-fronted spooky doom such as Jex Thoth and The Devil's Blood. Hailing from Texas by way of New York, this duo grinds out some alternately beautiful and horrifying music, equally derived from Black Sabbath, Mythic, and sixties occult rock like Coven or Black Widow, all sheathed in the somewhat goofy vampire shtick. This is their first EP, which, while not quite up to par with the startling LP Dungeon Prayers & Tombyard Serenades which was recently released, still contains some chilling, primitive ritual doom for a dark and stormy night such as this.
Stalking in the Shadowlands

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Poison Idea - Darby Crash Rides Again

Take these early demos of Poison Idea, including some that were never re-recorded, and shove 'em up your listen hole, you stooge!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Death Grips - Exmilitary

I must admit I don't know a whole hell of a lot about this screaming, scary madman; aside from this album and some stray mp3s there's not much to be heard out there, and he seems deliberately uninterested in any crossover appeal whatsoever. What we have here is lo-fi, homemade, psychedelic, twisted hip-hop with samples from the Ventures, Black Flag, and stranger places. Trippier than the weirdest sizzurp-flavored nightmare and more headache-inducing than cocaine cut with Drano, even at a brief (for hip-hop) fifty minuted running time, Exmilitary feels like a black hole of crazy that you'll never escape from. Don't say you weren't warned.
Blood Creepin

Monday, May 9, 2011

Back From the Grave vol. 2

Well then, seeing as how lately the weird psych records get about ten times as many downloads as the heavy metal records that usually end up as seat-fillers here in the Swamp, I can only assume that they must be striking a chord with a greater percentage of my darling Swamplings. Far be it for me to deny the silent whims of my little ones, so let's get this one right on out there. I posted the first record in this crucial Crypt Records series some time ago, but I must admit this one might be my favorite.

Less explicitly horror-themed than the first volume, the songs on this one tend to skew more towards drug-induced paranoia and general social rebellion than the previous entry; still, there is nonetheless a wide variety of ugly, anti-establishment punk sentiment to abrade up against delicate sensibilities. Highlights include motorcycle anthem "Willie the Wild One," the similarly free-wheeling "Wild-Man," and "City of People," a genuine immortal classic full of teenage sneer and delirious hate. This is not to diminish the other twenty-something tracks: there's plenty of soured love, bad trips, and 'Nam-era cynicism to go around, too.
What in the World

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Another forgotten tome of hideous beauty, Necronauts is the story of noted paranormal pioneer Charles Fort teaming up with Harry Houdini, H.P. Lovecraft, and Arthur Conan Doyle to battle dark forces from outside the universe. The story is a real ripper and the Frazier Irving art is just stunning.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Screaming Lord Sutch and Heavy Friends

Recorded surreptitiously by England's dandy prince of the macabre, Screaming Lord Sutch, and his higher profile "friends" such as Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Noel Redding, etc., this album caused a huge amount of contraversy and effectively ended Sutch's career when it was released. The biggest issue, aside from the sketchy legality, seemed to be sound quality, as the musicians were led to believe these were demo recordings; it's quite raw and red-lined throughout. In hindsight, though, this lends a lot of grit and character to the songs and helps it stand out from Sutch's usual slick novelty-rock sound. Of course the quality of musicianship also elevates it above such middling status as well, producing yet another universally panned album that sounds crucial and forward-thinking half a century later, albeit mostly unintentionally. Drenched in reverb with distorted vocals and torrents of buttery slide guitar, this could easily be any number of modern hipster garage outfits in cheap suits. Sutch himself is all over the place, coming on like Iggy Pop possessed by Screaming Jay Hawkins, and tarted up like Alice Cooper. Dumb, freaky, and sweaty.
One For You, Baby

Friday, May 6, 2011

Ythogtha - False Faith

Named for Lin Carter's son of Cthulhu, as presented in "The Dweller in the Tomb," Arizona's black metal monster Ythogtha serves up ten tracks of awful scraping madness (including the most fucked up Black Flag cover of all time) in thirteen minutes. Fans of Bone Awl and the like will enjoy this but frankly their horrid sound is entirely their own. Further pushing the boundaries of taste and listenability, False Faith is a sure-fire way to end Thanksgiving early!
Opener of the Way

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Sad Wings of Destiny

Oy, what a shitty day in the Swamp! I don't have the heart to re-type the lengthy complaint session I just spewed out and accidentally deleted, and nobody needs to hear it anyway. What we need to listen to instead is this second album by heavy metal outfit Judas Priest, whom you may have heard of. An early pinnacle in a long up-and-down career, it remains a personal favorite and a surefire cure for the crushing weight of the square world. Let's all sit together and let Mr. Halford and company wrap their sad wings about us, nuzzling up to their sweaty leather breast.
Victim of de Mayo

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Ennio Morricone - Exorcist II: The Heretic

I make no claims that this movie is any good,but the Morricone soundtrack is of course a complex and frightening listen. While the film itself was vastly inferior to it predecessor and underrated sequel, Morricone's main theme "Pazuzu" is as terrifying as "Tubular Bells" from the original, and infinitely more alien and disorienting. Other facets of his work, such as his groovy psych/prog experiments and his percussion choruses crop up here in between calm, dirge-like string passages and eerie gospel. I promise, a dark room and a pair of headphones will give you ten times the chills "The Heretic" could ever provide.
Great Bird of the Sky

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Java Java Indonesia Screaming Fuzz

Back just under the wire for a quick post. Here we have a surf/psych/weirdness comp from Indonesia, full of wild, wacky tiki rock for the space-age caveman in your life. Sorry for the kiss and run but it's time to hibernate after an extended psychedelic weekend. More gibberish tomorrow, gentle reader.
Tinggalkan Ku Sa Orang
Related Posts with Thumbnails