Thursday, 28 August 2008

Hmmm, needs more Bolt Thrower...


Damnation Festival tickets are still available at where I've just finally bought mine!
I went over to first and they seemed to have sold out.

Monday, 25 August 2008

jesu update

Long time readers of Thee Claw will be aware that jesu are a firm favourite of at least 66% of the people here.
You'l have no doubt read me lamenting how long I've been waiting for the vinyl version of Heart Ache to be released.

Well, finally, some good news, and a little bit of extra news:

The Heart Ache vinyl is finally available to buy from Justin's Avalanche Records webstore, as is the vinyl version of Pale Sketches.
From Justin's blog:

The long awaited vinyl versions of 'Heart Ache' and 'Pale Sketches' from Jesu and the exclusive 'Afar' picture disc only from Final are available to buy now, shipping begins 22nd August '08. Both the Jesu vinyls are limited to 1000 copies each and the Final is limited to 500 copies. All are pressed on heavyweight 180grm vinyl. Please visit the Avalanche Store HERE
and scan down the Avalanche Recordings catalogue until you reach the items.
The 'Pale Sketches' CD edition is now sold out.

As I've stated before, Heart Ache remains one of my favourite releases by any artist, ever, and this week I have been listening constantly to Pale Sketches on CD (this comprises of eight tracks that Justin has had knocking around since the end of Godflesh up to 2007) and Lifeline (Which is the EP featuring some really trippy shoegazy stuff, and an appearance from ex-Swans heroine Jarboe on one track).
I realised, whilst ordering the Heart Ache and Pale Sketches vinyl that I do't have Lifeline on vinyl, and headed over to Hydra Head records to order a copy for myself, and was greeted with the news that pre-orders are being taking for the new Why Are We Not Perfect? EP, along with other goodies that you can order only as part of the pre-order package in true Hydra Head fashion. Think I'll pass on the jesu tote bag though. (check out the ultra-trippy Why Are We Not Perfect? microsite here.)

He's a busy little beaver, Mr Broadrick, also available from Daymare Recordings (who will also be releasing a version of Why Are We Not Perfect? - I know, it's getting a bit confusing now isn't it?) is the split EP with Envy featuring two tracks clocking in at 14 minutes and 18 minutes...unfortunately their website is in Japanese, so now I'm looking for a record store in Europe that's carrying it, because knowing my luck I'll end up ordering 19 crates of Pocari Sweat by accident.

There is also(!) a split EP with Battle of Mice due out soon, which has an amazing sleeve image prepared for it.
It's an exciting, yet expensive, time to be a fan of jesu.
I can't wait for the next tour.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Prospective Gig Line-Up: Between Now & 2009

Looking around the local area (Northwest UK) and beyond for gigs to go. We've been slacking.


21st: Nile "Ithyphallic European Tour 2008" @ Leeds Rios


2nd: Melvins @ Manchester
15th: Scorpions @ Manchester Apollo
18th & 19th: Rottingham Festival @ The Old Vic, Nottingham
27th: Slayer @ Manchester Arena


3rd: Motorhead & Saxon @ Wolverhampton
14th: Motorhead & Saxon @ Manchester Apollo
22nd: Damnation Festival @ Leeds University
23rd: Gekfest @ Satan's Hollow, Manchester
25th: Ufomammut @ Star & Garter, Manchester
26th: Grief @ Star & Garter, Manchester


4 & 5: Nightmare Before Christmas @ Minehead Butlins (Melvins)
13th: Electric Wizard / Grand Magus / Moss @ London

Black Ice

AC/DC's 'Black Ice' Set For Release October 20th

Columbia Records announced today the October 20th release of AC/DC's widely-anticipated Black Ice, the band's first studio album in eight years. Black Ice features 15 new tracks from brothers Angus and Malcolm Young, Brian Johnson, Cliff Williams, and Phil Rudd. The album was produced by Brendan O'Brien at the Warehouse Studio in Vancouver, BC.

"Rock 'N' Roll Train," the album's first single, will debut on August 28th. The video will premiere in September. And the band is set to kick off its first world tour since 2001 in late October.

Black Ice will be sold in the US exclusively at Wal-Mart and Sam's Club retail locations at the special price of $ 11.88. Online, the CD will be available with free shipping and handling via the band's website,

Track Listing:

1. Rock ’n Roll Train
2. Skies On Fire
3. Big Jack
4. Anything Goes
5. War Machine
6. Smash N Grab
7. Spoilin’ For A Fight
8. Wheels
9. Decibel
10. Stormy May Day
11. She Likes Rock N Roll
12. Money Made
13. Rock N Roll Dream
14. Rocking All The Way
15. Black Ice

Monday, 18 August 2008

This week's playlist in images

(and how good are some of those photos? The last two being particular favourites)

Thee Claw Presents: A Heavy Metal History Lesson

Take note of the band names and the album titles, your homework is to track them down and give them some of your valuable listening time. Trust us, it will be time well spent.
In 1968, the sound that would become known as heavy metal began to coalesce. That January, the San Francisco band Blue Cheer released a cover of Eddie Cochran's classic "Summertime Blues," from their debut album Vincebus Eruptum, that many consider the first true heavy metal recording. The same month, Steppenwolf released its self-titled debut album, including "Born to Be Wild," with its "heavy metal" lyric. In July, another two epochal records came out: The Yardbirds' "Think About It" — B-side of the band's last single — with a performance by guitarist Jimmy Page anticipating the metal sound he would soon make famous; and Iron Butterfly's In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida, with its 17-minute-long title track, a prime candidate for first-ever heavy metal album. In August, The Beatles' single version of "Revolution," with its redlined guitar and drum sound, set new standards for distortion in a top-selling context. The Jeff Beck Group, whose leader had preceded Page as The Yardbirds' guitarist, released its debut record that same month: Truth featured some of the "most molten, barbed, downright funny noises of all time," breaking ground for generations of metal ax-slingers. In October, Page's new band, Led Zeppelin, made its live debut. In November, Love Sculpture, with guitarist Dave Edmunds, put out Blues Helping, featuring a pounding, aggressive version of Khachaturian's "Sabre Dance." The Beatles' so-called White Album, which also came out that month, included "Helter Skelter," then one of the heaviest-sounding songs ever released by a major band. The Pretty Things' rock opera S.F. Sorrow, released in December, featured "proto heavy metal" songs such as "Old Man Going."

In January 1969, Led Zeppelin's self-titled debut album was released and reached number 10 on the Billboard album chart. In July, Zeppelin and a power trio with a Cream-inspired, but cruder sound, Grand Funk Railroad, played the Atlanta Pop Festival. That same month, another Cream-rooted trio led by Leslie West released Mountain, an album filled with heavy blues-rock guitar and roaring vocals. In August, the group — now itself dubbed Mountain — played an hour-long set at the Woodstock Festival. Grand Funk's debut album, On Time, also came out that month. In the fall, Led Zeppelin II went to number 1 and the album's single "Whole Lotta Love" hit number 4 on the Billboard pop chart. The metal revolution was under way.

Led Zeppelin defined central aspects of the emerging genre, with Page's highly distorted guitar style and singer Robert Plant's dramatic, wailing vocals. Other bands, with a more consistently heavy, "purely" metal sound, would prove equally important in codifying the genre. The 1970 releases by Black Sabbath (Black Sabbath and Paranoid) and Deep Purple (In Rock) were crucial in this regard. Black Sabbath had developed a particularly heavy sound in part due to an industrial accident guitarist Tony Iommi suffered before co-founding the band. Unable to play normally, Iommi had to tune his guitar down for easier fretting and rely on power chords with their relatively simple fingering. Deep Purple had fluctuated between styles in its early years, but by 1969 vocalist Ian Gillan and guitarist Ritchie Blackmore had led the band toward the developing heavy metal style. In 1970, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple scored major UK chart hits with "Paranoid" and "Black Night," respectively. That same year, three other British bands released debut albums in a heavy metal mode: Uriah Heep with "Very 'eavy... Very 'umble", UFO with "UFO 1" and Black Widow with "Sacrifice". The occult lyrics and imagery employed by Black Sabbath, Uriah Heep, and Black Widow would prove particularly influential; Led Zeppelin also began foregrounding such elements with its fourth album, released in 1971. Also Welsh band Budgie released their self titled debut album Budgie in 1971.

On the other side of the Atlantic, the trend-setting group was Grand Funk Railroad, "the most commercially successful American heavy-metal band from 1970 until they disbanded in 1976, [they] established the Seventies success formula: continuous touring." Other bands identified with metal emerged in the U.S., such as Dust (first LP in 1971), Blue Öyster Cult (1972), and KISS (1974). In Germany, The Scorpions debuted with Lonesome Crow in 1972. Blackmore, who had emerged as a virtuoso soloist with Deep Purple's Machine Head (1972), quit the group in 1975 to form Rainbow. These bands also built audiences via constant touring and increasingly elaborate stage shows. As described above, there are arguments about whether these and other early bands truly qualify as "heavy metal" or simply as "hard rock." Those closer to the music's blues roots or placing greater emphasis on melody are now commonly ascribed the latter label. AC/DC, which debuted with High Voltage in 1975, is a prime example. The 1983 Rolling Stone encyclopedia entry begins, "Australian heavy-metal band AC/DC...". Rock historian Clinton Walker writes, "Calling AC/DC a heavy metal band in the seventies was as inaccurate as it is today.... [They] were a rock'n'roll band that just happened to be heavy enough for metal". The issue is not only one of shifting definitions, but also a persistent distinction between musical style and audience identification: Ian Christe describes how the band "became the stepping-stone that led huge numbers of hard rock fans into heavy metal perdition."

In certain cases, there is little debate. After Black Sabbath, the next major example is Britain's Judas Priest, which debuted with Rocka Rolla in 1974. In Christe's description, Black Sabbath's audience was...left to scavenge for sounds with similar impact. By the mid-1970s, heavy metal aesthetic could be spotted, like a mythical beast, in the moody bass and complex dual guitars of Thin Lizzy, in the stagecraft of Alice Cooper, in the sizzling guitar and showy vocals of Queen, and in the thundering medieval questions of Rainbow.... Judas Priest arrived to unify and amplify these diverse highlights from hard rock's sonic palette. For the first time, heavy metal became a true genre unto itself.

Though Judas Priest did not have a top 40 album in the U.S. until 1980, for many it was the definitive post-Sabbath heavy metal band; its twin-guitar attack, featuring rapid tempos and a non-bluesy, more cleanly metallic sound, was a major influence on later acts. While heavy metal was growing in popularity, most critics were not enamored of the music. Objections were raised to metal's adoption of visual spectacle and other trappings of commercial artifice, but the main offense was its perceived musical and lyrical vacuity: reviewing a Black Sabbath album in the early 1970s, leading critic Robert Christgau described it as "dull and decadent...dim-witted, amoral exploitation".

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Friday, 15 August 2008

More BFT Euro Tour Details

Don't fucking quote me on this okay.

So I just read that BRUTAL TRUTH will be playing at Nottingham Rock City on August 31st 2008 - this is in spite of the tour dates that were posted on their myspace saying that they'd be over in Rotterdam on that very night.

This is all very sketchy right now but one thing is for sure: If Sharpe/Lilker/Roberts/Hoak are gonna be in Nottingham then you can be sure that THEE FUCKING CLAW will be there too!

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Cold Ones @ Korova Bar, Liverpool

(Here's a quick one for you guys because I am not in any fit state to write anything in-depth at present...)

Me and THE SKUM went along to watch a gig in Liverpool city centre tonight - it comprised of 4 bands and it costs just £3 to get in. You can't argue with value like that!

The headline band (AKA "The last band on stage") was a local punk band called COLD ONES. I have seen them once before, at the same venue too, when they played as support for Gentlemans Pistols. I remember them as being fast, edgy and moving all over the place... and that's just how they were at tonight's gig. Check out their myspace page for examples of their stuff. We really liked their set and their music reminded us a lot of American hardcore acts such as D.R.I. and POISON IDEA. Really good and lots of fun. The support bands were good as well, at least, it was interesting to see them in action.

Next gig: This coming Tuesday night at the same venue! 4 bands including the interestingly named "Geoffrey Oi!Cott" from Leeds and "Career Suicide" from Canada. See you there maybe!

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Brutal Fucking Truth - End Of Summer Tour

Claw favourites BRUTAL TRUTH have announced even more European tour dates:

August 2008

Friday, 29 Bergen, NOR - Hole in the Sky
Saturday, 30 Magedeburg, GER – Blow Up
Sunday, 31 Rotterdam, NL - Waterfront

September 2008

Monday, 1 Bristol, UK – The Croft
Tuesday, 2 London, UK - Underworld
Wednesday, 3 Helsinki, FI - Nosturi
Thursday, 4 Meran, I - Jungle
Friday, 5 Pinarella di Cervia (Ra), I – Rock Planet
Saturday, 6 Roma, I - Palalockness
Sunday, 7 Cremona, I - CS Dordoni

Fuck yeah!

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Our Favourite Place

Roadburn Festival 2009
Neurosis is bringing their brilliant "Beyond The Pale" festival to Roadburn 2009.

The mission of Beyond the Pale is for us to honor the spirit and  power of sound with people that we feel are kindred spirits. We want
to bring together a diverse group of people who push the envelope, are truly original, and have that unspeakable fire and inspiration flowing through their art. -Steve Von Till

In our 23 years of existence we have had very few experiences that felt as right as our initial performance at Roadburn in 2007. Roadburn is a unique experience in the often disappointing and disingenuous world of music, it is a festival organized and run by people with a true passion and dedication to sound. In the spirit of this commitment we are proud to announce that the day of April 25, 2009 at Roadburn will be a rekindling of 'Beyond The Pale. We will be performing as well as curating the entire days events. -Scott Kelly

Roadburn is very pleased to invite our spiritual brethren from Neurosis to host a European version of their "Beyond The Pale" festival. We couldn't imagine anyone being more attuned to the atmosphere and energy of Roadburn than Neurosis, and offering them the opportunity to stage the first ever "Beyond The Pale" outside of the U.S. is our way of honoring their enormous contributions to underground music as well as their iconic style and sound.

On Saturday, April 25, Neurosis will have complete freedom to invite all the bands and set the lineups for each of the stages. Over the years, Neurosis has exhibited an amazing commitment and dedication to the art of underground music, something that we at Roadburn understand and appreciate completely. We are looking forward to the new ideas that they will bring to the festival, as we feel Neurosis are truly kindred spirits. We look forward to uniting at Roadburn 2009.

Steve Von Till comments: "It is a great honor and privilege to have asked to host our own Beyond the Pale event at Roadburn 2009. Since playing Roadburn 2007, we could think of no better people to work with on this event than the organizers and promoters of Roadburn and the wonderful staff at the 013. Roadburn is a completely different experience than the traditional music festival. It is a small, intimate, extremely well organized festival, put together by people who love the bands, and thrive on creating a  unique social vibe where the lines between artist, audience, and  staff are often completely blurred."

"2009 also marks the 10th anniversary of our own label, Neurot Recordings. What an amazing way to mark our first decade as a label. I believe that Roadburn and Neurosis share a clarity of vision that will result in an amazing experience for us all."

Roadburn 2009 will run for three days from Thursday, April 23 to Saturday, April 25 at the 013 venue in Tilburg, Holland. There will be an additional afterburner event on Sunday, April 26, 2009. Keep checking,  and  for updates.

Saturday, Liverpool

Saturday, 2 August 2008

Grimrobes - U.S. Tour

O))) USA Oct 08 29 07 2008

With honor SUNN O))) is announcing four live performances in the United States, to recognize the 10th anniversary of SUNN O)))'s creation ... and to coincide and the recording of our first album: "The GrimmRobe Demos". We will be playing material from this album exclusively. It will be a return to our primal origins, and approach respecting a concept of shoshin, the beginner's mind, the yet undyed pure wool, the clarity in initiation upon the untraveled.

The attitude of embodying the basics precisely, point by point, line by line, with an immovable faith in the teaching, experience and of beyond the possibility. Of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when approaching, even with much experience, just as a beginner would upon the initial impetus and thirst to seek the path.

And so, with this mindset that we will be approaching these live concerts. Pure, raw, uninhibited invocations featuring 0)))s core members: Stephen O'Malley and Greg Anderson ONLY. No guests, no vocals, no keyboards. We hope you will join us....

sunn 0)))- presents: Shoshin / GrimmRobes USA tour 2008

**Oct. 10th Los Angeles, CA. @ Safari Sams w/ John Weise + guests TBA) ALL AGES

**Oct. 12th Portland, Or. @ Berbatis' Pan (Fall Into Darkness fest. w/guests TBA) all ages w/bar.

**Oct. 15th New York, NY. @ the Knitting Factory (w/ Tony Conrad, Thou)

**Oct. 16th Philadelphia, PA. @ the First Unitarian Church (w/ Thou + guests TBA) ALL AGES

Friday, 1 August 2008

Two down....

....following on from the news about Eric Wagner, From Jeff Olson's Myspace page...

"Under great consideration, I have decided to part ways with Trouble. My reasons are justified. I felt like I was never taken seriously as a musician with the guys from Trouble, but I did the best I could in that 28 year effort with the band. That is all I would like to say for now. However, this is not a retirement from the music industry for I have my band, Retro Grave, with the full length coming out in a few months with fine players (the EP was a solo effort). I thank the Trouble fans for all their support and dedication and I'm sorry if I let you down. Moreover, I will say that Bruce and Rick are the drive and sound for Trouble and every one else are replaceable, so I'm sure they will carry on well. It's been an honor to have played with Bruce, Rick and Eric. I would also like to mention to Kerrang Magazine that I'm not leaving to become a preacher as you once noted many years ago and never corrected".

However, I have it on good authority that he leaves every three years anyway!