вторник, февраля 9

The Best Doom Metal Album - Metal Storm Awards 2015

Уже знакомый ресурс Metal Storm вновь номинирует наш альбом на годовой топ-10. До этого был Drunken Tales.

The wonderfully-titled Boys! Grow Giant Mushrooms In Your Cellar! sees the Siberian cosmonauts laying down more stoner doom jams topped off with woodwind work of Irina Drebushchak, who "has a voice that could make a wolverine purr and plays flute so fine she makes Ron Burgundy sound like a hobo." Ride the Floom.


 
The Best Doom Metal Album

Avatarium - The Girl With The Raven Mask
Chrch - Unanswered Hymns
Evoke Thy Lords - Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms In Your Cellar!
Khemmis - Absolution
Monolithe - Epsilon Aurigae
Mourning Beloveth - Rust & Bone
Paradise Lost - The Plague Within
Shape Of Despair - Monotony Fields
Sorcerer - In The Shadow Of The Inverted Cross
Undersmile - Anhedonia

понедельник, декабря 14

Boys! review: Aristocrazia webzine

Aristocrazia webzine:

Non conoscevo gli Evoke Thy Lords fino a che — tramite la sempre attivissima Solitude Productions — non mi è arrivato tra le mani questo disco; a conti fatti, posso assai dolermi di questa mia mancanza. Attivo da più di un decennio, il gruppo proveniente dalla gelida e inospitale Siberia aveva già all'attivo due album prima di rilasciare in questo 2015 la nuova creazione intitolata "Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms In Your Cellar!". Non essendo però in grado di fare paragoni con il passato, mi inoltro immediatamente a presentarvi il lavoro in questione.

Prendete un grosso calderone, accendeteci sotto un grande fuoco e preparatevi a mescolare Ozric Tentacles, Hawkwind e compagnie di musicisti vari ricolmi di droghe psicotrope; irrobustite con consistenti dosi di Stoner-Doom degenerato, grasso e acido stile Bongzilla e Weedeater e unite un pizzico di quell'aroma ipnotico che potrebbe ricordare vagamente i Celestial Season di "Solar Lovers"; ora spolverate ancora il tutto con ariose quanto evocative aure oniriche, portate in dono dagli interventi del flauto. Quarantacinque minuti a fuoco tassativamente lento e vi troverete di fronte a un'autentica esplosione lisergica.



Tra psichedelici e assurdi viaggi mentali fra cosmi impensabili e inospitali mondi alieni ("I Want To Sleep", "Damn These Deserts", "Human Thoughts As A Weapon"), e impressioni di distorte atmosfere esotiche che — unite a sezioni di maggior pesantezza Death-Doom — potrebbero tranquillamente essere uscite da un racconto di Lovecraft ("Betrayer / Lier", "World Without Me", "Time Is A Murderer"), il disco si snoda come un vero e proprio red carpet verso l'oblio più totale e avvolgente. Vario ma incredibilmente coeso, caleidoscopico senza mai slegarne le varie componenti, il Doom degli Evoke Thy Lords è un Doom che non appartiene a questo pianeta e probabilmente nemmeno a questo lato dimensionale dell'universo.

La proposta è fuori dagli schemi quanto basta per mandare in pappa il cervello dell'ascoltatore, tuttavia senza mai essere troppo esagerata o forzatamente eccentrica; uno splendido lavoro che — a dispetto di una veste grafica che lascia francamente un po' il tempo che trova — risulta essere un puro concentrato di ispirazione lisergica. Gli Evoke Thy Lords hanno sfornato davvero un piccolo gioiellino, il quale farà certamente la felicità di tutti coloro che sognano di far crescere funghi giganti nelle proprie cantine.


Everything is rotated in and out without being overused; the female vocals, the death growls (which seems just as sparse and limited as on their previous release), the flutes and everything else, keeping the songs from becoming same old, same old. Opening the CD with a 7 minute instrumental ('Damn These Deserts') was a risky endeavour, but it's all about the music here and Evoke Thy Lords still delivers a sonic stoned out trip (including a space jam passage on the CD ender), though the blunders here are a bit more damaging than they were on the last full length.

воскресенье, декабря 13

Boys! review: Vibrations of Doom zine

Vibrations of Doom zine:

I was happy to see another full length from the Russian stoner/doom/death outfit. Back for album number three you find the flutes and female vocals are back, continuing on in a doomy Pan.Thy.Monium fashion.

This time though eyebrows were definitely raised with track 2, 'Betrayer, Liar,' which started off with a digeridoo and tribal percussion, sounding like a cross between Australian Aborigine tribal sounds meeting up with a Middle Eastern flair! Then they added a Jew's Harp and the flutes; sadly I think they didn't bring ENOUGH of this new sound and influence on this album, as it would have made for a more diverse listen. This is said especially because a few tracks here fall short of what this band is truly capable of, for instance the faster female sung vocals on 'Sky Is Falling' didn't sit well here, especially when they clash with the low toned death growls.

Even the flutes were off here, and followup 'Human Thoughts As A Weapon' sounded like they just ran out of good ideas for riffs; these heavy riffs are pretty generic for a band like this. Add too the fact that some of the guitar work is quite odd, though they still can put together a good instrumental jam.

And that's one of the strengths of this release; that the almost improvisational instrumental passages are as strong as ever; in fact I dare say that on CD ender 'Time Is A Murderer,' the high ended flute notes are some of the best on the record, maybe their best ever! It's still groovy, rockin' and heavy, and they still have a few tricks up their sleeve (like the instrumental passage near the end of 'World Without Me' slowly speeding up and then dropping right back down to their groovy end flawlessly).



Everything is rotated in and out without being overused; the female vocals, the death growls (which seems just as sparse and limited as on their previous release), the flutes and everything else, keeping the songs from becoming same old, same old. Opening the CD with a 7 minute instrumental ('Damn These Deserts') was a risky endeavour, but it's all about the music here and Evoke Thy Lords still delivers a sonic stoned out trip (including a space jam passage on the CD ender), though the blunders here are a bit more damaging than they were on the last full length.

пятница, октября 16

Boys! review: Metal Library

Metal Library:
После удачного релиза "Drunken Tales", выпущенного два года назад Solitude Productions и явившего миру обновлённое звучание Evoke Thy Lords, новосибирцы практически окончательно отреклись от death doom прошлого и довели новый материал, вышедший под актуальным и интригующим заголовком "Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms in Your Cellar!" Любопытный факт: новый материал был записан ещё до "Drunken Tales", но по вине недобросовестного звукоинженера практически безнадёжно испорчен, так что разобравшись с предыдущим релизом, группа взялась за восстановление, как казалось, потерянного альбома.



Evoke Thy Lords справились на отлично. "Boys!.." и "Drunken Tales" похожи как близнецы братья, и это не проблема. Новые композиции точно также записаны в духе гипнотического, психоделического doom с уверенным, потусторонним гроулом, нечастыми партиями женского вокала, близкими по форме к джазовым, и прекрасной вездесущей флейтой. Флейта следует практически неотступно за гитарами и завораживает своей настойчивостью. В песнях, по-прежнему строящихся на каркасе death doom риффов, преобладают stoner doom ритмы и формы, жёсткости которых время от времени приходит на смену высокохудожественные space-роковые мелодии.

Группа уверенно лавирует между стилями с высокой степенью артистизма, интуитивно ориентируясь в потоках жанровых направлений и следуя потоку коллективного сознания участников. Агрессивные выпады сладжевых риффов, меланхоличные и блуждающие мелодии флейты, звучащий из их лабиринта отрешённый женский голос, принадлежащий, несомненно, космической сирене, качественный, сдержанный гроул, легко заводящий stoner-кач... это оригинальное, удивительно складное сочетание редко встречающихся в музыке одной группы элементов уже второй раз срабатывает с безупречной эффективностью. "Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms in Your Cellar!" – целостный, увлекающий альбом, Evoke Thy Lords наработали харизму, заработали репутацию и не спешат отказываться от открытой ими беспроигрышной алхимической формулы. Как долго они смогут эксплуатировать эти наработки? Наверно, пока не надоест. И пока не надоедает!

Lightbringer

вторник, октября 13

Boys! review: Metal Imperium

Metal Imperium:
Berço de bandas como os Aspid, os Kauan ou os Arkona, a Rússia é um país que não dá muito ao heavy metal, mas quando dá, fá-lo à séria. Os Evoke Thy Lords são mais um exemplo do “dar pouco, mas bom”. A banda russa tem um som muito característico, carregado de elementos distintivos e este terceiro álbum tem algumas das melhores músicas que a banda já produziu.

O começo do álbum é auspicioso. “Damn These Deserts” é uma malha que podia jurar a pés juntos já ter ouvido um milhão de vezes noutro álbum, noutra banda ou noutra vida. Os elementos psicadélicos dos russos estão sempre presentes em todas as canções, colocando o ouvinte numa espécie de estado de trance, muito por culpa da flauta de Irina Drebushchak e do baixo de Alexey Kozlov. O resto dos instrumentos são como cobras indianas que dançam hipnotizadas pela flauta que, neste caso, é de Irina. Há uma acalmia e um relaxo quase submissos ao som dos Evoke Thy Lords, algo que torna este álbum em algo bastante transcendente e espacial, mas ao mesmo tempo indelével.



Este é um daqueles álbuns onde, sem tudo ser perfeito, nada está realmente fora do lugar. A voz áspera de Kozlov está em habitat natural e o feminismo de Irina coabita aqui naturalmente e sem destoar. O ritmo é baixo, o som das guitarras vem de um poço bem fundo e a flauta é dona e senhora durante todo o álbum. Há aqui também um espectro algo celta (flautas?) e até um pouco de mitologia germânica (?), entre cargas e descargas, acelerações e travagens e um destino sempre igual: o psicadelismo. Outras faixas como “Sky is Falling” ou “Time is a Murderer” possuem mais elementos stoner e doom, algo que retira alguma peculiaridade do som dos Evoke Thy Lords. Isto é o mais próximo que a banda se chega do chamado “genérico”, o que acaba por ser bom.


“Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms in Your Cellar!” podia ser uma espécie de “Crimson” dos Edge of Sanity, na medida em que o álbum é uma longa música dividida em fatias disformes. Com as suas imperfeições, este é um trabalho que, à primeira vista, passa por simples música ambiente (resulta para descontrair), mas que depressa se torna mais que isso pela sua fusão de elementos e géneros. Nunca é demais referir Irina Debrushchak, qual flautista de Hamelin, que é o maior elemento distintivo da banda. Surpresa ou não, estes russos mostram que com uma ervinha, uma flauta e umas quantas garrafas de vodka se consegue criar algo verdadeiramente novo. Bravo!

Nota: 8.5

Review por Pedro Bento

воскресенье, октября 11

Interview: Vibrations of Doom

A band influenced by the likes of the mighty and cult status revered Pan.Thy.Monium? Yes, please... All fucking day long... This Russian band made me a big fan with their "Drunken Tales" album, due to the stoner rock and doom metal influences, complete with the FLUTES, man!! Their newest release continues down the path forged by the left hand of doom, but evolving ever so slightly to bring about an album that has a few new twists to the tried and true sound... This is an interview we have been after for a long time, and of course they're signed to Solitude Productions, so I probably don't need to say much more about this band.

I have your first CD "Escape To The Dreamlands," and it was cool to hear the Lovecraft influences and lyrics on that record. I'm guessing you decided to not go that route lyrically by the time "Drunken Tales" came around?

Yes, "Drunken Tales" has another concept and themes, both in music and lyrics. We left the Lovecraftian themes just after the "Escape...". The lyrics in "Drunken Tales" are some kind of monologues or talks inside the mind of a man. Something like a mid-life crisis in a meditative way, if you know what I mean.

The two records "Escape..." and "Drunken Tales" are quite different stylistically; one could say that "Escape..." has almost a gothic doom/death feel to it, whereas "Drunken Tales" is more of a psychedelic and slightly melodic atmosphere?

Sure, the music is very different in these two albums. We name this our own way of progress... or regress). It depends on your point of view.

So I'm curious if you guys have ever listened to the band Pan.Thy.Monium? Because I absolutely LOVED the "Khaoos And Konfusion" record, and the first album I ever heard from you guys ("Drunken Tales") reminded me SO much of that record, especially with the flute sounds. Of course, it's less chaotic and more, shall I say, "controlled" that Pan.Thy.Monium? Were these guys an influence? Maybe the band name Evoke Thy Lords "evokes" influences from that realm?

Of course, we listened to Pan.Thy.Monium, but as for influences from their realm? I don't think so. Anyway, I need to listen their records again. Thanks, you reminded me about the band.

Your first album came out on Stygian Crypt, and now you're on Solitude Productions. How did that whole deal come about? I know Stygian Crypt is a rather small label and your first album is difficult to find nowadays...

It's not a big problem, we still have some copies of our previous works and "Escape..." as well. So if some good guys want to have this, they can send us email (evokethylords@gmail.com) or order CD's via our bandcamp page.
Well, about labels... Stygian and Solitude work well, we can't say something negative about either of them. And we haven't released "Drunken Tales" via Stygian, just because our music has changed. Solitude specializes in these genres so we have released the record via Solitude. By the way, besides Stygian Crypt and Solitude we have also released our second work - the "Twofaced" EP via a Mexican label called American Line.

As of this writing, I see you have a new album out, with a rather odd title "Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms In Your Cellar!" Tell us how different (or how similar) this is to your previous albums?

Maybe it's right to call it a missing link between our other albums. The music has a groove and death metal elements as well. There are some tracks with female voices again and with flute, of course. You can listen to it on our bandcamp page. The album name is an allusion to Ray Bradbury's novel. We think the atmosphere in the story is very similar to that in our album.



Going back to the album "Drunken Tales," there's less of a female vocalist presence than there was on your first album. I did hear some female vocals, but they are scaled back quite a lot and not as operatic. Did people respond well to the operatic styled vocals on the first record?

Yes, the words of people who like that music were quite positive about a female voice on "Escape...". But, as you said, we had some changes in female vocal parts. This type of a female voice is closer to our music and ourselves. It's more live, realistic and emotional, I think.

Tell us a bit about the lyrical themes on "Drunken Tales." I love the picture of an astronaut in what I guess is a space bar? I know Sleep had a similar thing going on with having an astronaut on the moon with a bong hooked into his jetpack; Seems like you normally wouldn't find an astronaut "on the job" either drinking or smoking weed; considering how dangerous his job in space can be!

Your words are so poetic, thanks. It seems, people make suggestions in the light of a visual component, and art is more than lyrics or interviews. As I say, the lyrics on "Drunken Tales" are more about thoughts of a man rather than open space and cosmonauts. The artwork shows an astronaut in a usual bar... I don't know... a wrong man in the wrong place maybe.

Solitude Productions has a TON of great doom bands on their label; they seem to sign so many amazingly talented and quality bands from all around the world! I particularly love The Howling Void, Ea, of course you guys, Mournful Gust, Shattered Hope and quite a few more! Who are some of your favorite artists from that label?

You must listen to Station Dysthymia if you like funeral doom. These guys are our neighbors and they are great. What about other Solitude-released bands, I don't watch them closely. But I remember Heavy Lord from the Netherlands, it's an awesome band.

Are any of you guys a huge fan of stoner rock? I know some people say the genre is a bit oversaturated, but there are some great bands in this genre; such as Kyuss, Dozer, Gate 9, Natas, Acid King and more.

We like a lot of bands in stoner rock and stoner doom metal also. I saw Acid King on Hellfest in 2014 and they were awesome. Same words I can say about other great bands on that stage, for example Clutch and Electric Wizard... Fantastic music and fantastic gigs!



Does Russia have any kind of stoner rock scene at all? I know that black metal and doom metal are probably two of the genres that Russia has an abundance of, but I've never heard of any stoner rock bands coming from here...

Sure, our country has stoner bands too. A short time ago we played with the band Weeduza in Tomsk, Siberian city, and these guys were very good. Their music is strongly influenced by Sleep. And in our city we know To Have Balls band, they play very tasty stoner/southern riffs.

While on the subject, any of you fans of black metal at all? I know most people think of Scandinavia when they think of black metal, especially with the winter landscapes, but I know Russia has probably harsher winter climates and probably just as many vast forests and glacial mountains...

And you think we must love black metal because we're from Russia, don't you? So, you're catching the very core - EVERY Russian loves black metal, it's truth. But some of us are uncomfortable to confess to it, as an elephant in the room - you know, for example, all these grandmothers with grandchildren, common people, authorities, society - so, we all just look the other way and put the best face on matters.

So just curious if you know much about the history of Rock Music in Russia. I have a very interesting book I have read about the history; it's interesting to see that the government was actually interested in sponsoring Russian rock music. To hear about bands like Time Machine and the like; it must have been a very interesting and challenging time in Russia for young musicians...

Talking about that, it's necessary to keep in mind that a huge number of bands playing Russian Rock music don't play rock. I guess, it's some kind of substitution, and Russian Rock doesn't mean a Russian version of world rock music. This music has much more in common with guitar poetry than hard rock or something. As for me, in the USSR these bands had more of a social nature than a musical one. And now this genre doesn't relate to any heavy or underground scene and it's a part of show business, maybe with very few exceptions. But I have never heard about government sponsoring of any rock musicians in our country.

We've heard quite a bit awhile back about Vladimir Putin censoring "swear words" and music that reflects these have been on the chopping block as well. What are your thoughts on this; surely this is something that the Russian people could not be happy with? I also learned that Cannibal Corpse albums are not permitted in Russia these days...

I think it's kinds of political games. Most people in Russia have heard nothing about Cannibal Corpse and those bands.

Finally, I always enjoyed the flute in doom metal, but felt it wasn't heard enough. Granted, bands like the aforementioned Pan.Thy.Monium, and also Shape Of Despair and Cathedral's first album, utilized this to great effect, but I rarely ever hear it anymore... Will the use of flutes continue on with Evoke Thy Lords?

The flute is the part of our sound, so don't worry, the flute will continue to play in our music.