I feel like I hastily passed this over at one time on Bandcamp, only to have it start showing up repeatedly in my Spotify mix playlists until I had heard enough to realize what a stoner rock gem this album is. If I’d heard it sooner it would have easily made my favorite albums of 2019 list!
Cincinnati’s Valley of the Sun shows off a range of styles beyond the typical fuzz rock outing on Old Gods, their third full length album. At times sounding like QUOTSA, and at others like a Tool-influenced King Buffalo, this album ranges from heavy fuzz rock to light, wistful instrumentals that could have been outtakes from Alice in Chains’ Jar of Flies.
If you’re a fan of Lowrider, King Buffalo, ASG and the like, you should stop what you’re doing right now and check out Old Gods.
Standout Tracks: Old Gods, Dim Vision, Gaia Creates
Ethereal, hypnotic, unhurried, and quietly epic, the latest album from King Buffalo draws you in with such unassuming ease that you don’t realize you’re caught in its snare until your head is bouncing and your hair standing on end (around minute 12, to be precise).
Released March 2020, Dead Star is an evolution from King Buffalo’s 2018 masterpiece Longing to Be the Mountain, while sharing some common threads with that popular favorite. New side trips into ambient and even 80s-influenced electronic music don’t dull the understated power contained in the psychedelic drone underpinning the compelling groove of this excellent album.
Fans of Pink Floyd, All them Witches, and Elder should check out the latest from this Rochester, New York power trio who just gets better with every new release.
Standout tracks: Ecliptic, Red Star Pt. 2, Eta Carinae
I can’t express how excited I am that those crazy groovy Greeks in Puta Volcano have delivered another syncopated, riff-heavy album of killer tracks with their latest release AMMA, out everywhere now. With their third solid release, Puta Volcano has planted its flag in the sand and saying ‘we are here, motherfuckers.’
The tighter-than-ever quartet has refined its sound from a raw, gritty energy into a restrained, slightly understated but confident power, more like muscles flexing and less like a punch to the face. The rhythm section of Bookies on bass and
Steve Stefanidistill on drums lays a heavy groove and Alex Pi’s guitars go from mean, tight riffs to warm fuzz shower with ease. Anna Papathanasiou’s powerful, husky vocals still raise the hair on the back of my neck. Fans of Tool will dig the latest from these rising stars.