Get Prep’d: Psychedelic Witchcraft, Haast’s Eagled, and Lotus Thief

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Welcome to the SIXTH edition of Get Prep’d; we hope you’ve got the good SENSE to pay attention to these upcoming records. Today we’re going to get you ready for some upcoming doom, psych, and stoner metal releases, one of which happens to be my most anticipated release of 2016. Get ready for new music from Psychedelic WitchcraftHaast’s Eagled, and Lotus Thief


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Combining the intrigue of tarot, the allure of all things occult and the seemingly timeless charm of the 70’s on their debut EP Black Magic Man, Italy’s Psychedelic Witchcraft have an appeal that is nigh on sorcery. The aforementioned release from early last year consisted of 4 tracks, two of which were upbeat rockers and the other two were of a laid-back bluesy retrospective nature. The combination of the warm fuzzy guitars and the low-key drums however cool on their own, would have a much lower chance of standing out in the deck had they not have been dealt with the drawcard of high priestess Virginia Monti’s powerful and spellbinding voice. She manages to colour the mood that the guitars set at all times, her presence always strong but never over-dominating the track. Considering she not only made the artwork for the release but also produced the EP, her talent is clear. A bewitching charisma seeps through the already vibrant stoner riffing as she beckons you to down the left hand path.

So far they’ve released a couple of teaser tracks and this latest acid-laced video clip. The track kind of settles somewhere between the two distinct styles on the first release, the unifying feature being the strength of the hooks. The band also released a tribute to Lemmy just days after his death late last year, covering a track called “The Dark Lord” from his pre-Hawkwind band Sam Gopal. If all this hasn’t already convinced you to check out at least one of these tracks, you’re playing the fool. For those that have and are now craving more, you don’t have too long to wait, as Psychedelic Witchcraft’s first LP The Vision will be overturned on April 29th.

In the meantime, you can head over to their bandcamp page and pick up the EP by clicking below or give them some love on facebook and tell them the toilet sent you.


Haasts

Early last year I scored two of the best stoner/doom albums I’ve had for quite some time (both from the mighty SMOHLG) during a recommendation swap, one being Mammoth Storm (check them out here) and the other a four-piece outfit from South Wales named Haast’s Eagled. Start the killer track “Viking” below and read on..

Huge riffs sail atop of drumming that pounds like tidal waves hitting rocky outcrops of coastline, while interesting raspy verse vocals give way to more traditionally sung (Mastodon-like) chorus lines. The bass-heavy sound rumbles through the mix and will have your skull vibrating in the best possible way. Now, while you are being swept away I’ve done a bit of looking into Haast’s Eagled, and it seems this 2013 EP was their debut and sadly went fairly unnoticed, which is a shame really as there’s quite a bit of diversity amongst the four tracks. Some of this variety takes the form of sedate sections where calmer waters prevail and submerged guitar tones strum out curious introspective chord patterns. Whereas, the heavy third song “Tracking the Footsteps of Goliath” is reminiscent of Bongripper‘s dense plodding meanderings on 2014’s Miserable.

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Turns out the Haast’s Eagle is an extinct avian species from New Zealand; fossil evidence shows that it was the largest species of eagle ever known to exist and died out around 1400CE (not long after saving Middle-Earth for the umpteenth time). The bird’s size is thought to have been due to the size of its prey, the extinct flightless bird known as the Moa, which weighed over 200kgs. When the Maori people arrived they naturally hunted the Moa into extinction (obviously to supply their B’Dubs outlets with giant chunks of dead bird), and thus the Haast’s Eagle died out too. The obscene size of both birds is an example of island gigantism, and when listening to the immense sound that these UK doom metallers create, it’s no wonder they chose this huge animal for their moniker.

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Last week I received notification that unlike their namesake, Haast’s Eagled are most definitely extant, for on the 27th of May they will unveil their second release titled II For Mankind. While the band are about to premiere a new track titled ‘The Uncle’ on BBC radio, there are currently no new tracks available online but you can head over to their bandcamp page and pre-order what is sure to be a enormous offering of the doom you crave.


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After combining forces for a track on Botanist‘s 2012 album Doom In Bloom, the partnership of Bezaelith and Otrebor has unfurled into a beautifully delicate yet powerfully transformative 2-piece outfit known as Lotus Thief. First coming to my attention just prior to the 2014 release of their acclaimed debut full-length Rervm, the San Franciscans play a supernal style of metal that is rinsed in psychedelic overtones and a dark otherwordly atmosphere.

The supremely talented Bezaelith handles vocals, guitars, bass, synth and writes the lyrics. Her riffing blends a variety of styles, from contemplative delay-drenched melodic odysseys to spirited upbeat acid-freakouts. Percussionist Otrebor lays down his usual accomplice, the hammered dulcimer, in favour of picking up the sticks to put on an exceptional display with the drums. While the music could potentially hold-up on its own, it is Bazaelith’s mesmerising vocal display that steals the show for Lotus Thief. Her solemn yet ethereal tones are the perfect accompaniment to the music. Now I know the words transcendent and ethereal get thrown around quite a bit these days, but I would gladly remove them from all descriptions just to be able to use them for Lotus Thief’s sublime sound.

Lotus-Thief

Rervm followed a profoundly interesting concept for me, as it was based on a text called De Rarum Natura written by Roman philosopher Lucretius, who lived in the 1st century B.C. The title of the text translates to “On The Nature Of Things” and from what I understand, attempts to explain the universe using but two fundamentals, atom and void, without the prevailing religious connotation of the times (Link found me a translated copy a couple of years ago here). Each of the 6 tracks represents one of the 6 books of the total text. The intricacies of the ancient script are reflected in the music, which was a veritable macrocosm of both ambience and progression.

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Details of the next album have been scarce. We are yet to discover the title or the release date, but one thing we do know is that the master recording session was completed in early February and they are currently working on pressing the vinyl. Therefore, we can assume a release is only just around the corner. Whatever the case, this album is my most anticipated release of 2016, and I’m sure some of you will find yourselves in a similar position after succumbing to the allure of Lotus Thief’s enchantingly warm chinook winds.

For the meantime, you can head over to their bandcamp page and listen to an interview or just stare wistfully at the screen. I’ll be there too, clicking refresh like it is my one calling in life.


(Image via)

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  • Dubs

    Lizard bro, I’m stoked for Lotus Thief and curious to check out Big-Ass Eagled.

    • Dubs

      RFI

      • Lisa Ling: Devourer Of Souls

        Needs an eyepatch and a corn pipe.

        • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

          Always a plus…

          • Lisa Ling: Devourer Of Souls

            Even with your pic?

          • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

            have at it my good sir!

    • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

      I am stoked for the monstro-eagle as well.

      • Dubs

        If I could go back in time, I’d ride a dodo.

        • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

          Who wouldn’t?

        • Sir Tapir The Based

          Didn’t know you’re into zoophilia.

          • Dubs

            I was talking about your mum. She is not bright.

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            Momma Tapir gon be mad af.

    • Spear

      How do you reconcile your eternal enmity with hawks with your love for eagles, the most patriotic of Accipitridae?

  • Waynecro

    Psychedelic Witchcraft and Haast’s Eagled don’t do much for me, but I kind of enjoyed that Lotus Thief album–especially its concept. Lucretius >>>>>>

  • Spear

    Lotus Thief! I didn’t even know they had a new one coming.

  • Stanley

    Lotus Thief is super nice to chill out too. They play around here all the time but I’ve yet to catch them live. I’ll have to remedy that one of these days.

    • Lacertilian

      For some reason I thought you’d seen them with one of the group members supporting Pale Chalice. But yes, I would love to check their live show, if only it was feasible distance-wise.

      • Stanley

        I think that was another person in the FB group that lives here. I couldn’t make that show at the Elbow Room, I think.

        • Lacertilian

          Side Note: I remember reading a news piece mentioning a guest appearance from both bands on another album. Trying to think of the name, Palace Of Worms maybe?

          • Dubs

            Palace of Worms comes out this week.

          • Lacertilian

            That might be the one. You know much about it?

  • EsusMoose

    Dig the tone for Psychedelic witchcraft

  • Dubs

    Abyssal gigantism > island gigantism

  • Sir Tapir The Based

    That Lotus Thief album was one of me favs from dat year. Looking forward to their new material.

    • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

      I think Hells Headbangers has a new stock of that LP.

      or they did

  • Stanley

    Haast’s Eagled are from South Wales. I’m from South Wales. Spooky.

    • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

      Breaking news: Stanley is a member of Hasst’s Eagled

      • Dubs

        Stanley pronounces eagle “eagled”

        • Stanley

          lol. I wrote it with a silent dee.

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            But that’s the band name.

        • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

          Looks as if he pronounces Eagled “eagled”

      • Stanley

        But, but…I can’t play guitar that slow.

        • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

          Nice facade. We all know you can

          • Stanley

            But, but…none of my guitars are tuned to A.

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            It’s you playing guitar at your normal speed, but the recording is slowed down giving it the downtuned sound.

          • Stanley

            But, but…I don’t own a bong.

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            One doesn’t need a bong to enjoy and play doom metal.

          • Stanley

            Really? I always thought that’s what I was missing.

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            Nope. Just a need for slow, dark, heavy riffs.

          • Stanley

            Slow <<<<<

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            But, but…

          • PostBlackenedWhaleGaze

            I was actually in a stoner/doom/thrash band with a friend who didn’t drink or smoke.

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            Proof that it’s the music not the substances you’re using.

          • PostBlackenedWhaleGaze

            But do you own a whammy DT?

    • Lacertilian

      And I’m from the New Improved Updated South Souf Wales.
      Crazy.

      • Stanley

        I won’t argue with any of that.

      • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

        I like whales…and Gojira of course.

        • PostBlackenedWhaleGaze

          I have to find the whales…

  • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

    Howdy padnas!

    Quick question: no Tyree no KSOFM? Que Paso?

    • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

      Tyree is out, could be permanent, hopefully not. I’m not sure about KSOFM

      • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

        Bummer any details shareable here?

        • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

          I don’t want to overstep any boundaries, so i think I’ll keep quiet on the subject.

          • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

            Gotcha, not tryin to stir the pot either. Ive been off the grid a bit and wondered whats up..thx bro..

          • Boss theSpeedMetalBastard Ross

            I know you’re not.
            No problem, Mr. Taco sir.

          • Rob M

            Hey man…if you talk to him some other way, tell him to come back. We dont give a shit about a bunch of nameless down votes, we like having him here

        • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

          Tyree felt unwelcome because his posts were so routinely downvoted (by posers).

          KSOFM i have no idea about

          • Stanley

            This may sound dumb, but how do you know if your posts are downvoted. I never see any numbers next to the little arrow?

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            im not sure how it works anymore but it used to be (on PC) that you could click or hover over the down arrow and see. i use my phone most often, which doesnt show my numerous downvotes

          • Stanley

            Can you down vote this post so i can see what happens?

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            DOWNVOTED

          • Stanley

            I don’t see shit on my end. Just the regular grey arrow. I’m using Safari on a Mac.

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            no idea, man. disqus has changed many times in regards to downvotes. it used to count and display all of them.

            i really didnt see what the big deal was. even if his posts were being heavily downvoted, they were also being upvoted by people like you and i. which is more than a lot of people get.

          • Stanley

            OMG! I have been be missing out on loads of glorious downvotes!

          • Dubs

            I think you have to inspect the element to see if you’ve been downvoted.

            Alternatively, just browse by newest and never care. I have never once checked to see if I’ve been downvoted.

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            seems like, to me, thats a lot of work to see if someone is downvoting you.

          • Dubs

            *shrug emoji*

          • People are insecure and narcissistic…

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            Well I think that’s a little harsh

          • I’m just generalizing about what kind of person would monitor downvotes is all.

          • Dubs

            I think you’re good to go on that review.

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            huzzah

          • Stanley

            From Discus Help.

            Do you show a tally for the number of down votes?
            No. Disqus uses both up and down voting to surface the best comments, however only up votes are displayed publicly to others.

            Apparently, Google Chrome has an extension that you can use to display discus downvotes, but I can’t be bothered with all that. I’m going to keep living in la la land.

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            2kool4skool stan

          • Rob M

            Yeah, Im good not knowing, and quite frankly, only dickheads and assholes hide behind down votes anyways

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            its probably just Axl, downvoting anything good

          • Rob M

            Nah, that would require him to tear himself away from monitoring Mustaine’s social media pages for the next thing to get his panties in a twist about

          • RustyShackleford

            I was under the impression we just WERENT downvoting anyone and I think I like it that way haha. Clicking down on something i don’t like is wayyyyy too much effort bruh

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            as a rule, i generally only downvote as a joke(because theres no consequence to it, at all), and then i say it

          • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

            same here man…lol

          • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

            Thx man…I didnt even realize down voting was possible. Must be visible from the back end. No wait, I’m just so coo, funny, topical and positive it never happens to me and I never do it…lol.

          • Rob M

            Youre kidding? I didnt even know you could do that, but why the hell would anyone be down voting Tyree of all people anyway?

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            im sure we have some people here, and some trolls and lurkers, that dont appreciate the hatred and despair of his musical posts

          • Rob M

            Then those people should be listening to polka

          • sweetooth0

            weak

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            You’d think they would downvote me!

          • Rob M

            We do dude

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            I wouldn’t have guessed.

          • Rob M

            Nah..Im just messing.

            Honestly, from what Stanley says you have to get some kind of app to even know, and if Tyree is getting hammered I can only imagine what kind of numbers my fucking loud mouth has managed to accumulate

          • Dubs

            Ignorance is bliss, I guess.

          • Rob M

            In this case, Im gonna go with “Yes”

            …though honestly, I came off the Amazon metal board originally, down votes dont mean shit to me

          • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

            Well there’s a metal litmus test if there ever was one

          • Rob M

            You’d be surprised at the number of trolls that place would attract back when people were actually using it. Used to get into pages and pages of arguments with people

          • Gibberish is piss, God bless.

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            I would never downvote you JJD, no matter how much I hate some of your classic rock faves (*cough* Meat Loaf *cough*).

            After all, we’re probably two of the only ones on here that still defend a few nu-metal classics.

          • Rob M

            “After all, we’re probably two of the only ones on here that still defend a few nu-metal classics”

            Downvoting FrankWhite as we speak

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Sorry man, opinions will be opinions. I feel every subgenre in metal has things worth checking out.

          • Rob M

            Nah, thats cool…go crazy. Im not that open minded myself, but I dont tell other people what they can and cant like

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Haha that’s cool. I’m always charmed by new styles and sounds and stuff. And I think that for instance the first Korn and the first Slipknot at the time sounded quite fresh and different. Both bands turned to complete crap later on in their career. My nu-metal collection is reasonably small though. Korn’s first, Slipknot’s first two, Mudvayne’s first two, System of a Down’s first two and everything by Deftones. The rest that came out of the genre is a pile of shit in my opinion.

            That doesn’t mean any of those albums would get a place in my “Top 10 Desert Island Picks” like Streetcleaner, When the Kite String Pops, Through Silver in Blood…would. But in general I would describe myself as a fairly open-minded metal listener.

          • Rob M

            Most of my musical taste comes from real oldschool, dyed in the wool metalheads (i.e. Elitists) and that still tends to reflect in my music choices.

            Fortunately Im mostly over the whole, “my music is better than your music” thing, and while I dont mind pointing out when I personally think a band or album sucks, I do try and make a distinction between that and saying a person sucks for liking something

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            That’s sad

          • sweetooth0

            that’s super lame. I wonder how many of my posts were downvoted. probably all of them, ha ha ha ha ha

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Really? Man, that sucks. I liked Tyree. I think everyone should be welcome to share his musical tastes, no matter how much they diverge from others.

          • Stanley

            Tyree has the best taste here.

          • Rob M

            Yeah…I always thought I knew something about something, but he always had new bands worth checking out

          • Stanley

            That reminds me, I need to go and give him some beer money over at bandcamp.

          • Rob M

            Link plz…I know hes in a grind band, but I never saw it

          • Stanley
          • Rob M

            Thanks!

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Haha, well I think his taste does fit your taste the best. And when it comes to underground DM and BM he’s extremely knowledgeable.

            Taste is relative though.

          • Stanley

            lol. That’s what I mean to say. Just having fun.

    • I know it wasn’t your intention, but this entire thread is ridiculous. Just ask them.

      • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

        So delete it…you have the power.

  • Nina Osegueda

    <3 Lotus Thief!

  • I’m broken down on the freeway right now. Fuck me. (Also: Lotus Thief!)

    • Ol Dirty Blastbeard

      Been there good luck

    • Lacertilian

      I broke down on the freeway of life and pitched a tent. It’s noisey but I’m comfortable watching everything fly by before my eyes.

    • Count_Breznak

      Here, get some sleep https://www.twitch.tv/bobross

  • JWEG

    I’ve been looking forward to this Psychedelic Witchcraft album since before it was even just a rumoured future endeavour.

    You’re right about Virginia Monti’s voice being spellbinding, but I suspect her presence in general would have the same effect.