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ALBUM REVIEW | Helicon - Helicon

ARTIST: Helicon 

RELEASE: Helicon

RELEASE DATE: 8th December 2017

RECORD COMPANY: Fuzz Club Records

Glasgow based experimental psych outfit 'Helicon' have announced their highly anticipated self-titled debut album to the masses. With eight EP's under their belts, 'Helicon' have taken the live scene by storm, touring Europe and sharing the stage with some serious heavy hitters including Wooden Shjips, The Warlocks and Dead Skeletons. Helicon's sound is addictive, engagingly dynamic and at times all consuming or otherworldly with melodic eastern tinged psych, swirling drones, mantra like vocalisations and intricately intense guitar work that collectively merges into one almighty sonic attack. 'Helicon' get's it's full release on December 8th 2017 via the ever reliable 'Fuzz Club Records' with pre-orders available on deluxe edition vinyl (limited to 100 copies) and standard vinyl (limited to 400 copies) over on fuzz club.com and digitally from fuzzclub.bandcamp.com

A pulsating motorik wave of driving sonic abandonment announces the arrival of ‘Devil On Your Tongue’, the opening salvo on this sublime collection of tracks. It’s rhythmic progressions envelope the senses as they swirl menacingly through layers of fizzing synth, throbbing bass and driving guitars created primarily to carry those mantra like vocalisations into and out of crawling cavernous breaks that are filled to the brim with heady clouds of resonating sounds and atmospheric reverberations. ‘Valmiki’ swirls into ether tumbling gracefully through the shimmering sounds of luscious sitar underpinned by a steady drum pattern, the plink of fragile synth and rolling guitars. The pace soon quickens introducing droning instrumentation to the mix, echoing brilliantly as sonic frequencies stack on top of one another, gaining momentum with each tempestuous turn, sucking the listener into a broiling mass of stunning sonic sound waves. ‘Valmiki’ is a masterful track, highly infectious and deeply entrancing. Up next, ‘Seraph’ the albums lead single, drones into life meandering on the sweet sounds of melodic sitar and metronomic percussion. Shimmering guitars accompanied by deep throbbing bass frequencies permeate the mix, adding a heady atmosphere before dragging those stunning vocalisations into audible range whilst undulating brilliantly through layers of sticky reverberation.

‘Drinking Of You’ fizzes into life riding a sequenced synth line accompanied by hum of bass, subtle guitar and rolling percussion. A dark and oppressive atmosphere starts to build, and it seeps into every single fibre of the track, erupting in stages into a heaving mass of angry instrumentation that undulates into periods of calm and at times can slip into deep dark trenches filled with raging frequencies and tinged with a kind of lysergic sonic energy. It’s a bloody impressive track that can both scare and amaze all at once. ‘The Bold Yin’ momentarily drones into life pulling blissed out synths and shaking percussion with it as it tumbles through the ether. Heavenly vocals float atop shimmering sounds topped up with swirling organ swells and resonating acoustic guitar as catchy chord changes drenched in reverb pull searing lines of lead guitar into close orbit allowing them to lick and whip the piece into shape. ‘The Bold Yin’ morphs into a very different animal half way though as ‘Helicon’ move up through the gears and inject an acid tinged hue on proceedings. Driving instrumentation swirls and dances alongside senses pummelling percussion, collectively building into an unstoppable sonic behemoth. Up next, my favourite track on the entire release is let loose to fuck with peoples minds. ’Teenage Murder’ is an immensely addictive, crawling, metronomic beast drenched in dark and oppressive psych induced atmospherics. A processional drum beat holds court here forming a bedrock of sound waves capable enough to carry surging synth swells, bubbling electronics, howling guitars and throbbing bass frequencies, drenched in sullen reverberation and deftly enveloping that absolutely immense vocal performance. Resonating synths intertwine with spine tingling tambourine hits and wrap themselves around huge sprawling chord changes as this track is dragged through walls of stunning effects and intense production with relative ease. ‘Teenage Murder’ is infectious and will have you replaying it for days.

The albums penultimate piece entitled ‘French As Fuck’ unfurls it’s sonic tendrils floating through hazy walls of esoteric psych. Luscious sitar lines loop and arc through pulses of organ and fizzing synth as subtle guitars rumble and move alongside cascading bass frequencies and steady percussion. Melodic vocal lines hover atop repetitive progressions and work through shimmering verse patterns with ease as chorus parts explode into a vivid kaleidoscope of colour. ‘French As Fuck’ is a wonderful blissed out psychedelic excursion into the sonic ether. The album closes out with ‘Ring The Albanian’. It’s opening salvo’s shake and shudder into audible range bellowing violently on a layer of growling guitars, shimmering sitar and senses pummelling percussion. A throbbing bass line meanders underfoot as howling guitars take centre stage building maliciously into a blisteringly explosive cacophony of noise accompanied by soaring synth and huge percussive breaks. It's a marvellous end to an absolutely immense album.

5/5

LINKS:

fuzzclub.com

fuzzclub.bandcamp.com

heliconglasgow.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/HeliconGlasgow

twitter.com/HeliconGlasgow

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Del Chaney - (Author Photo)

Del Chaney has spent the last five years dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, post punk & modern psych rock from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion (Now On Hiatus). His other arm  - Primal Radio -  has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has helped him in actively promoting a genre of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.


ALBUM REVIEW | Rise Of The Echo Drone - Chemically Altered

a0842208450_16ARTIST: Rise Of The Echo Drone

RELEASE: Chemically Altered

RELEASE DATE: September 28th 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

Glasgow based experimental psych outfit ‘Rise Of The Echo Drone’ is a collaborative musical project created by Laura O’Brien and Helicon’s own Gary Hughes that features hypnotically charged psychedelic soundscapes gloriously filled with swathes of sequenced electronics, dub laden bass frequencies, motorik percussive patterns and intensely addictive instrumentation that effortlessly swirl through the sonic ether with reckless abandon. Their latest full length nine track album entitled ‘Chemically Altered’ was released back on September 28th 2016 and is available to buy/download right now from: riseoftheechodrone.bandcamp.com

‘Getting Higher’ menacingly ambles into earshot on rumbling bass frequencies and a repetitious percussive pattern coupled with sampled vocalisations and underlying synth swells. It’s mantra like vocal lines are enticing and they meld effortlessly with the swirling bleeps and whirls of the instrumentation. Up next, ‘Skull Grinder’ crawls and shudders as it makes landfall, building in intensity as the drum patterns rumble and shake, all the while circumnavigated by droning frequential noise, snaking lead guitar lines and haunting sampled vocals. The eastern esoteric vibes of ‘Chemically Possessed’ float into the ether on a blissful wave of tabla drums and electronic theatrics whilst ‘Drone And E’ does exactly as it says on the tin.

‘Walks Without Sound’ hovers as it unleashes sparse percussion and a plethora of impressive sampled vocals that collectively swirl through swathes of reverberation while ‘Chemically Altered’ rattles as it’s burgeoning synth swells sit atop a repetitious breakbeat, building in intensity as it works through a collection of woozy sequenced patterns. Up next, ‘Dying Escape Death’ is steeped in atmospherics as its dark synth lines and pounding drums usher in it’s unsettling repetitious vocal mantra. The albums penultimate track is a modern day psych monster. ‘Is He Sleeping’ undulates and builds in intensity as it enters into audible range. It’s driving bass frequencies lead the charge as the almost hallucinogenic vocal line rides a wave of impressive reverb and is brilliantly intertwined with searing guitar squall and enchanting lead licks.

The albums closing piece entitled ‘Insane People With Insane Minds’ swirls around a sampled speech by the infamous Mr.John Lennon. Subtly building as it meanders through layers of deranged synth swells, cascading piano progressions and droning instrumentation, ‘Insane People With Insane Minds’ is a fitting end to a brilliantly experimental slice of modern day electronic psych.

4/5

LINKS:

riseoftheechodrone.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/RiseOfTheEchoDrone/

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Del Chaney has spent the last four years not only fronting popular experimental Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, post punk, post rock & modern psych rock from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion. His other arm - Primal Radio - has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has hepled him in actively promoting a genre of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.


NEW SINGLE PREMIERE | St Deluxe - Expectations/Julia

a4143435305_16Glasgow based noisy, experimental trio 'St Deluxe' have returned with a cracking double A side cassette and download release entitled 'Expectations/Julia' via their bandcamp page. Following on from February's psych/gaze tinged extravaganza 'Draw A Line', the band have embarked on a serious noise pop/slacker rock infused sonic attack with this latest release, dabbling into a melodious pot of old school sounds reminiscent at various times to alt-rock hitters like 'Teenage Fanclub & Dinosaur Jr' through to the fuzzier darker sounds of 'Jesus And Mary Chain & Sonic Youth'. 'Expectations/Julia' is available to buy/download on various formats right now from: stdeluxe.bandcamp.com

'Expectations' is a bruising sonic beast, filled with tremulous driving fuzz, snaking lead breaks & melodious vocal lines reminiscent of Dinosaur Jr & Teenage Fanclub whilst 'Julia' travels a darker path, as fuzzy layered guitar progressions drenched in reverberation, throbbing bass frequencies & thunderous drum patterns swirl around those hard hitting vocal lines with aplomb.

LINKS:

stdeluxe.co.uk

twitter.com/st_deluxe

facebook.com/St-Deluxe


NEW MUSIC PREMIERE | St Deluxe - Highly Strung

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Glasgow's noise-rockers 'St Deluxe' release their first new material since 2013's double A side single 'Plastic Eyeballs/On The Moon' and it's a summery slice of scuzz!  'Highly Strung' is available to download as a 'Name Your Price' right now via www.stdeluxe.bandcamp.com/track/highly-strung & its a recommendation from us lot. Go check it out!

[bandcamp width=100% height=120 track=3858660362 size=large bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 tracklist=false artwork=small]

LINKS: 

stdeluxe.co.uk

twitter.com/st_deluxe

facebook.com/St-Deluxe

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DLw-Xtuoh0&w=853&h=480]

 


ALBUM REVIEW | The Dead Electric - A11 S1x Num63r5

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Artist: The Dead Electric

Release: A11 S1x Num63r5

Release Date: 02/2015

Record Company: Unsigned 

I have great admiration for bands who do it themselves! I think writing, recording, mixing, producing, mastering & releasing your own music, yourself, says a lot about your bands character. We all know that the mass media whores & major record companies have polluted this modern day musical landscape with mass produced trite bands, releasing disastrously brutal songs through major PR companies awash with dirty money just looking for a fast buck!!! More often than not they hop on the latest resurgent musical scene & kill any hope of it ever catching on with todays kids, by cashing in on it, early in it's development - thus murdering it in it's infancy! This cashing in, breeds contentment amongst the major record companies & increases the already huge constant pressure on bands/artists to be the - In Thing, by either sounding or looking good (Mostly by working with bands without paying them), has destroyed the very fabric of todays music scene! But there is hope! There are bands out there flying the DIY flag for us all to gather around, support & keep alive any sort of hope in todays musical landscape! I've been a fan of one such band for a long time & I have eagerly awaited the release of their new album - 'A11 S1x Num63r5'.

Glasgow based 'Dead Electric' have consistently self released  atmospheric shoegaze/alternative-rock  since 2011. Their Immense 2012, 5 track release  - "The Last Bastion" is a constant on my speakers & initially introduced me to this amazing group of musicians. They write stunningly emotive, shoegaze infused soundscapes intertwined with Post-Rock flourishes sitting atop solid alternative rock foundations. The band are made up of Ian Fairclough: Vocals, Guitars, Keys,  Dave Fairclough: Guitars, Vox, Keys,  Dave Calder: Drums, Vox, Keys & Rob Carleton on Bass, Guitar . Their latest release is nothing short of stunning!

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With a Sonic Youth style intro, the album opens up with another 'Dead Electric' classic! 'The floating' sounds like Bob Mould's 'Sugar' fed on a high octane diet of shoegaze, alt-rock & sheer brute force. This is clearly a show of intent from this Glasgow based 4 piece. It's a masterful track of steadily addictive peaks & troughs with walls of effected guitars straddling a solid bass & drum track.

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The Fairclough brothers, both guitarists, decide to hit the listeners with another arm of their brilliant musical craft. They have this canny knack of writing emotive tracks, that tell stories, either electrically or on acoustic guitar, with ease! Track 2 'Maya' is two minutes & twenty eight seconds of beautifully crafted songwriting. Floating, effected vocal lines swirl around the acoustic guitars with stunning effect, casing shadows over the tracks musical tones. Simple in it's construction but completely breathtaking all the same. A beautiful track to listen to on headphones. It's recommended that you do so by this listener anyway! Go check it out for yourselves:

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=1921130018]

 

Track 3 is alternative rock 101! With hints of heavier 'R.E.M' style vocal arrangements & sometimes seminal early 90's 'Swerve Driver' guitar work, 'Transceiver' explodes onto the musical canvas with it's impressive hazily swirling effected guitars & surprising backing vocals. Another solid track from 'Dead Electric', again, showing the musical world just how diverse their sonic plate really is!

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=1663222412]

 

'Suck Thru' first appeared as a single back in December 2013 and it's not really surprising that it appears here on this full album release.  The acoustic guitar stylings return again, but with the added bonus of a brilliant electric guitar line, complimenting the vocal's & in turn ripping through the beautiful acoustic guitar tones,  paving the way for the brilliant addition of a church organ! I love it when bands experiment with instruments on their tracks. It keeps the listener's attention fixed on the music only & stops them from meandering away in a daydream. I liked this track way back in 2013 & I'm glad that 'Dead Electric'  included it on this release. Check it out:

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=3515621822]

 

Track 5 on this epic release is the self titled 'A11 S1x Num63r5'. The full on band treatment returns here with epic results! Again, I can hear early 'Swerve Driver' from this tracks opening notes! Walls of effected guitars, pounding drums & throbbing bass carefully protect the vocal lines throughout the verses until that smooth chorus break calms the sonic maelstrom & allows the track to breath & shine. This track has hints of old school 'Last Bastion' era 'Dead Electric', but theres a modern edge added now. A grown up, expressive song structure with brilliantly produced results.

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=357527422]

 

Next up, 'My Own Feet' is a full on shoegaze classic! The opening guitars pull you in & introduce you to another sonically delightful track. The guitars are especially immense on this track!! Again this is another track, that to me, screams  - 'Bob Mould'. I don't know if 'Dead Electric' were listening to his band - 'Sugar', at all throughout the recording process of this album? If not, they should go and listen to early 90's 'Sugar', especially the bands brilliant album - 'Copper Blue'. This is a brilliant track. Check it out:

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=1529744348]

 

The addictive Piano line heralds the arrival of a behemoth! With Post-Rock infused vocal arrangements & expressive song structure, '1992' announces it's brilliance onto the musical landscape with style!  Beautifully produced blissed out vocals, explosive psychedelic chorus break & atmospheric guitar parts instantly catapult this slice of genius into my favourite track from this whole album! Hands down!  This should be the next single release! It is immense & I congratulate the band on it. Stunning piece of work!

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=4012250936]

 

With creeping intent the penultimate track on this impressive release from Glasgow based gazers 'Dead Electric' is another beautifully crafted slice of emotive shoegaze. Track 8, 'We Are We' allows the vocal to breath while its wall of guitars swirl around it like a animal stalking its prey. Typically, it shows how bloody good 'Dead Electric' actually are as songwriters! This is yet another stunning track & not to be missed.

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=4015678103]

 

The final track on 'A11 S1x Num63r5' by the brilliant 'Dead Electric' is called 'Dont Eat Your Heart Out'. Coming in at one minute, seventeen seconds, it's a fitting atmospheric end to a roller coaster of an album. Short & sweet it brings closure to another chapter in Dead Electric's illustrious song book but one that hopefully doesn't mean the end.

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1549665999 size=small bgcol=333333 linkcol=e32c14 track=28907158]

 

It's a are thing to find an unsigned, underground band or artist who's sound evolves from album to album or track to track. Dead Electric are brilliant songsmiths. They can craft atmospheric, emotive tracks without breaking sweat. Every single release from this band has been immense. From the early days of 'This Mind Of Yours' into the brilliant 'The Last Bastion' & now this stunning new release 'A11 S1x Num63r5 ', they continue to go from strength to strength with ease!

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This album was recorded at various locations including Chem19 - Hamilton, Forth Valley College - Stirling, La Chunky - Glasgow, The Unit - Dalmarnock and of course The Shed. It was Recorded and Mixed by Ian Fairclough, Produced by Dead Electric & Mastered by David McAulay & Ian Fairclough at Film City.

You can find out more about Dead Electric over at:

twitter.com/Dead_Electric

facebook.com/DeadElectric

Dead Electric brand new album entitled ' A11 S1x Num63r5" is available to download from: DeadElectric.Bandcamp.Com

 

Del Chaney - The Primal Music Blog - March 2015 - Dublin, Ireland. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

10801829_910434145642940_2344009609374998645_n

Del Chaney has spent the last two years not only fronting popular Irish Electronic duo 'Analogue Wave', but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the Unsigned or Small Independent Label based Shoegaze, Dream Pop, Noise-Rock & Post-Rock genre’s of music from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. His other arm, 'The Primal Radio Show', has gained considerable respect from band’s and promoter’s alike since it’s conception in 2013 & has helped him in actively promoting a genre of music that he's passionate about. He also currently write's for Canadian based online music webzine www.ReplicantEars.com. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.