Tag: psych punk

New Video: JOVM Mainstays Oh Sees Release Nightmarish and Hallucinogenic Visuals for “Enrique El Cobrador” off “Smote Reverser”

Throughout this site’s eight year history, I’ve written quite a bit about the Bay Area-based  Oh Sees (a.k.a. Thee Oh Sees, OCS, The Oh Sees, The Orange County Sound, Orinoka Crash Suite and other variations) — and as you may recall, the band which is led by its ridiculously prolific creative mastermind John Dwyer has long-held reputation for a wide-ranging experimentalism that has seen the band dabble and bounce between lysergic-tinged folk, furious and sweaty garage rippers, sci-fi driven krautrock and more. And with each successive album generally being completely different from its predecessors, it makes the band difficult to pigeonhole.

Last year’s Orc was a muscular and darkly inventive turn for the current lineup which features Tim Hellman (bass), Dan Rincon (drums) and Paul Quattrone (drums), as the material balanced a trippy, cosmic vibe with some of their most hard-hitting and punishing tendencies. Reaffirming their reputation for being unpredictable, the members of the band quickly followed that up with Memory of a Cut Off Head, an album that found the band revisiting the sound and approach of their early years, best known as their “quiet” period; in fact, returning to one of the band’s earlier names — OCS — was meant to herald a return to –the lower end of the decibel meter. 

Last year, Dwyer and company did two shows with their quieter and lush incarnation at The Chapel in San Francisco and those live shows eventually produced a handmade, mail-order only live album OCS Live in San Francisco that was released through Rock Is Hell Records. Interestingly, the album will be re-issued and made available in a condensed 2 LP set and to support that effort, the OCS will play a limited performance run of mellow OCS tunes at The Murmrr Theatre in Brooklyn, as an octet featuring members of the early lineup, including Brigid Dawson (vocals), Tim Hellman (bass), Paul Quattrone (drums), Tom Dolas (keys), Eric Clark (violin), Heather Lockie (viola) and Emily Elkin (cello). (You can check those dates below.)

Also, Castle Face Records will be re-issuing a string of Oh Sees out-of-print Oh Sees albums from the quiet era beginning with The Cool Death of Island Raiders in February 2019. In the meantime, the band has released live footage of them performing the trippy and epic burner “Block of Ice,” that features some wild and unhinged guitar playing centered around a propulsive and steady groove. Quieter? I’m not so sure, as this one as a buzzing, garage psych quality; but either way I’m looking forward to catching Dwyer and company live. 

But before that, the ridiculously prolific Dwyer and his Oh Sees/OCS released Smote Reverser earlier this year, and album single “Enrique El Cobrador” finds the band meshing classic psych rock and prog rock in a way that brings JOVM mainstays King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard but with a muscular and frightening sense of menace at its core, as the song is centered by a motorik-like groove, explosive blasts of guitar, arpeggiated keys and Dwyer delivering his vocals with a guttural snarl. Directed by Alexis Giroux and featuring animation from Giroux and Massimo Colarusso is a hallucinogenic nightmare of murder, bloodshed and bright colors and other wild imagery. 

12/15/2018 Murmrr Theatre – Brooklyn, New York
12/16/2018 Murmrr Theatre – Brooklyn, New York

Last year, the Northern Italian psych punk act Bee Bee Sea released their sophomore full-length album Sonic Boomerang to praise from NPRClash Magazine and others for a high-energy, fuzzy power chord sound with elements of garage rock and psych rock that’s generally been compared to Thee Oh Sees and King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard among others, earning the band attention and praise from outside of their small, industrial hometown. And once you’ll hear the furious and frenetic album single and title track “Sonic Boomerang,” it’ll no longer be a surprise as to why they’ve so quickly gained the attention of both European and American press —  fuzzy power chords, some explosive guitar pyrotechnics,  a forceful and motorik-like groove, shouted vocals and a rousing mosh-pit friendly hook.

The Italian psych rockers are in the middle of their first North American tour to support their critically applauded sophomore album. Check out the rest of the tour dates below.

Tour Dates 

7/23 – Atlanta, GA – The EARL

7/24 – Memphis, TN – Hi Tone

7/26 – Phoenix, AZ – Crescent Ballroom

7/27 – Costa Mesa, CA – The Wayfarer

7/28 – Los Angeles, CA – Zebulon Café Concert

7/31 – San Francisco, CA – Elbo Room ( with DJ Sid Presley)

8/02 – Seattle, WA – Funhouse Seattle

8/03, 04, 05 – Happy Valley, OR – Pickathon





New Video: Prettiest Eyes Return with a Scorching and Trippy Visuals for New Single “Don’t Call”

Comprised of San Juan, Puerto Rico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based Pachy (drums, vocals) and Marcos (bass) and the Ciudad Juarez, Mexico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based Paco, the members of synth punk/psych punk/psych rock trio Prettiest Eyes can trace their origins back to San Juan, where Pachy and Marcos played in a number of local bands before they all eventually relocated to Los Angeles to seriously pursue music. And within their first two years together, the trio realized two EPs  and their 2015 debut Looks, all of which featured sleazy, sludgy, psychedelic-tinged, garage punk rooted around throbbing bass chords, quick-paced drumming, buzzing keys and lyrics shouted and howled in Spanish and English — and while fitting comfortably among contemporary retro-styled, psych and garage rock bands like  Raccoon Fighter, The Yetis, The Black Angels and others, the band manages to set themselves apart, as a result of their material, which frequently possesses a sweaty, primal and downright dangerous urgency, with razor sharp hooks and a retro-futuristic vibe. 

Now, it’s been some time since I’ve personally written about them but as it turns out, the band recently released their sophomore effort Pools and from the album’s latest single “Don’t Call,” the San Juan, Puerto Rico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based trio will further cement their reputation for crafting sleazy, noisy, primal punk rock that throbs with a muscular insistence. It’s nasty and it’s weird as fuck but absolutely necessary and mosh pit worthy while mischievously nodding at John Dwyer’s impressively prolific work. 

Directed, shot and edited by Laura Sofia-Perez,  the recently released video for “Don’t Call” is equally as intense as the phone, further emphasizing it’s gritty psychedelia — in some way it feels like a wild and fucked up acid trip. 

Currently featuring Annie Lipetz, Josh Pollock, Mark Nelson and Sonny Pearce the members of San Francisco, CA-based psych rock/indie rock act Dooms Virginia can trace their origins to two disparate events — the first being the formation of their original project Annie Girl and The Light, a nationally touring punk act, which had opened for the Against Me! and others; and the second being, frontwoman Annie Lipetz’s long held obsession and fascination with Roy Sullivan, a man, who in his lifetime had been struck by lighting more than any other person. As the story goes Roy Sullivan came to Annie in a dream and told her that he discovered that the source of lightning’s attraction to him was a strange and power energy. In the dream Sullivan put this power into a totem and offered it to Lipetz and as soon as she took hold of it, a new and very different artistic voice emerged and new material came poring out. In exchange for this inspirational and powerful totem, Lipetz promised to pay tribute to Sullivan by renaming her band’s name to the town where he had been lain to rest.

And as you’ll hear on the band’s latest single “Devour,” the band’s more punk rock sound has become increasingly frenetic and forceful sounding as though it draws equally from math rock, punk rock and garage rock — in particular I think of Cinemechanica and The Blind Shake song others but with an overpowering urgency. As the band explains of their latest single “The media is lying to the masses, and it’s time to wake up. We have to fight against racism, xenophobia, homophobia, misogyny and hate,” and may this single get you raring to fight — right now.