Posts Tagged ‘The Cosmic Dead’

The Cosmic Dead are four psychedelic warlords from Glasgow with a penchant for trippy, long-form grooves that summon the spirit of Komische legends such as Neu! and Can and the Space-Prog oscillations of Hawkwind, amongst other trance-inducing influences.  This results in an 80 minute long debut record, released on cassette, containing four slabs of epic, sonic heaven, complete with pulsating waves of drone, acid-soaked guitar fireworks, fleeting vocal glimpses and throbbing, motorik percussion — all underpinned by an earthy, low-end bass rumble, of course.

The best thing to do here is turn your stereo up full blast and go with the flow, allowing these colossal waves to wash over you.  ‘The Slow Death of the Infinite Godhead’ is the best track, impressing especially when the band hits (interstellar) overdrive, unleashing massive, tumbling ‘audio generator’ sounds that feel like they’re going to swallow you up. Opening gambit, ‘The Black Rabbit’, meanwhile, may seem indulgent given its near 20 minute lifespan but remains enjoyable throughout with its furious, liquid riffs complimenting the bass and synth drone, allowing the juggernaut drums to take centre stage around the instrumental meanderings.

‘Father Sky, Mother Earth’, at 40 minutes long, takes up the whole of Side B, starting sedately and mantra-like, before this young quartet erupt in an intense fashion, hammering home the notion that, like their live show, they’re at their best when they’ve got the pedal to the metal and the controls set for the heart of the sun.  Julian Cope would love these guys

‘The Cosmic Dead’ cassette can be obtained from Who Can You Trust Records limited to 150 copies, while a digital version is available at the bandcamp link below.

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It takes all kinds of devotion to head into the 13th Note’s dingy basement venue at the best of times, but when the Sun is splitting the trees outside and temperatures begin to touch 20°C only true musical worshippers need apply. At just £5, this 11 band all day event was more than value for money with the Cave ov Lights people offering up a veritable feast of doomy delights, nascent noise and devastating drone-rock.

Edinburgh-trio Parallax Scrolls (pictured above) hit the stage first powering though a succinct set that had notes of Hovercraft, Sonic Youth and a touch of No Age.  It was decent fayre too, with an edge of dissonance combining well with the angular chords structures and forceful drums.  One-man wrecking-crew Guanoman swiftly followed bringing with him a brand new long-form track. His purposefully over-blown doom prog, with over-driven riffs and scathing solos played over a backing track  also went down well.

13th Rung (below) provided some warmth with their swirling mass of tranquil ambient guitar sounds.  This duo impressed me quite a bit, reminding of the more introspective parts of Mono, while an understated ominous edge building beneath the melancholic guitar and effects added tension and was a nice touch.  I was pleased to be handed a beautifully packaged handmade CD-r from this duo and I’ll hopefully review it soon.

Nacht Und Lebel (Night and Fog apparently) entered the fray with an array of pedals and effects units and set about trying to deafen those in attendance with a barrage of noxious, vitriolic noise, screeching static and colliding sounds. Space Victim were next to inflict some serious damage on our ears with a punishing set consisting of one long-form drone created by bass and guitar, with this girl and guy combo using an e-bow over severely distorted guitar.  There’s not a lot of info on the web about this two-piece, but they both cropped up later in a couple of other bands.

The Cosmic Dead (below) were the main reason I was in attendance and delivered accordingly with the set of the night in my opinion.  Glasgow finally has a band to rival what’s going on over the other side of the Atlantic (Cave, Oneida, Pontiak etc) and I reckon these guys could hold their own in any company.  A juggernauting, cathartic set as heavy as a rhino, with this quartet motoring through four tracks purposefully setting the controls for the heart of the sun — their drummer on particularly phenomenal form (a trick he would re-produce later in the evening).  Worth the admission fee alone.

A late addition of Skullwind’s guitar and acidic vocals performance paved the way for a seriously ultra-violent set from Mancunian trio C.S.B (Cryptic Salve Band).  After 15 years of gig-going experience, I like to think I’ve seen it all, but even in my battle-hardened state nothing could have prepared me from C.S.B’s extreme assault on the senses.  Their frontman spent most of the time in crowd barging into people, screaming into faces and at one point even knocked a poor bystander to the floor and proceeded to wrestle with him, which was somehow taken in good form.  I don’t really know where to start with these guys to be honest, perhaps a bit of Raging Speedhorn or Eyehategod in their vicious sound.  One thing is for sure, I’ve never seen anything like it.

Geordie troupe Obey restored a bit of order, at least on the violence side.  A collective featuring members of Space Victim, Skullwind and Masterslave, introduced yet more powerful, acerbic  sludge gathering the biggest crowd of the day in the process.  Dundee trio The Wildhouse came next, changing things up a little with a sound that reminded of Magik Markers or ‘Sister’-era Sonic Youth.  It was still plenty noisy and there were some interesting guitar sounds emanating from the soundsystem amidst the driving drums.  Incidentally, I also picked up a CD of theirs.

Which left Masterslave (below) to close proceedings with The Cosmic Dead’s brilliant percussionist joining the guitarist from Skullwind and the bassist from Obey midway through a mind-melting improvised drone, powering the band towards an epic, loud as hell finale, which left my ears with a ringing sound that I can still hear vague hints of, even as I re-cap the events for this blog.

Gameboy by Bronto Skylift from Bronto Skylift on Vimeo.

The Orkney Islands-based duo of Bronto Skylift have released a video for ‘Gameboy’ from their typically devastatingly heavy ‘White Crow record.  Fans of ‘Strap It On’ era Helmet will surely lap-up those thick, staccato riffs.  I’ve had the pleasure of seeing these guys live before and the near enough blew my head off.

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Similarly, Glaswegian Drone-Rockers The Cosmic Dead also have a new video, or at least a new track, previewing on Youtube, from their forthcoming eponymous cassette release, due to be issued by Who Can You Trust Records?.  An epic mind-bending journey of Hawkwind/Can proportions.

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The rather splendid Hibernate Records has a brand new sampler available for free download featuring Japanese Ambient guitarist Hakobune, the brilliant Ithaca Trio and Slovakian experimentalist Strom Noir, amongst its impressive 11 strong track list

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Esmerine returns with their first record in six years, the duo founded by Bruce Cawdron (Godspeed You! Black Emperor) and Beckie Foon (Thee Silver Mt. Zion) now expanded to a four-player ensemble. La Lechuza is dedicated to the late Lhasa de Sela, a close friend and collaborator of all four member of the group, and features an unreleased version of her song “Fish on Land,” recorded with Beckie and Bruce during sessions for Lhasa’s final album.

Listen to “Snow Day for Lhasa,” featuring the vocals of Patrick Watson, here.

La Lechuza will be released on CD and 180gLP and is available for pre-order now. More info, including samples, can be found on our official release page. Releasing 07 June.

Source: http://cstrecords.com/

I knew immediately, without hearing anything by this band, that I was going to like them, with a name that perfectly describes their sound.  Discovered via the latest Astral Visions podcast,  The Cosmic Dead are a trance-inducing Krautrock/Space-Rock collective making one unholy, unearthly sound.  Having recently supported Arbouretum in their native Glasgow, The Dead are set to launch their debut album with a cassette only release through Who Can You Trust, though I have a feeling a free download of this may crop up on the excellent Winning Sperm Party label.  There are just 150 copies available which the band have described as a ‘an 80 minute mind melting affair featuring four tracks.’  I’m unsure if the track below on the soundcloud widget will feature, but fans of Kyuss, Sleep, Hawkwind, Can, Stereolab et al, will surely find lots to love about The Cosmic Dead.  The video comes complete with trippy Alice In Wonderland imagery.