Vita – drums, Poia – guitars & Urlo – bass, vocals
With their unique brand of psychedelic sludge/doom, the Italian power trio Ufomammut have gradually grown over the past decade to become one of the leading acts of the genre. Mixing heavy, fuzzy riffs with often dark ambient passages, the band has produced such brilliant and expansive records as Snailking (2004), Idolum (2008), Eve (2010) and the double-sided ORO (2012). Now, they have returned with another masterpiece, Ecate, their most straightforward and streamlined effort. Before embarking on a European tour as well as crossing the Atlantic for the first time for an extensive North American trek, Vita, Poia and Urlo took some time to answer a few questions for Sputnik:
Hello! How are the preparations for the new album release and following tour going?
Urlo: Everything is good, we’re rehearsing a lot lately to play Ecate in the best way possible. It’s a new path for us in terms of music, so we’re very curious to see how it’ll be live. In the meantime we’re getting mad with all the US visas issues and preparation of the American tour… but we’re very excited to be in the States. And we’re preparing the limited edition vinyls at Malleus headquarters, a very precious version of the LP of Ecate that will be out at the end of March.
Vita: This is a busy period, we have to practice the new record and get all the documents we need to travel stateside.
Four years have lapsed since the Croatian stoner act, Stonebride, has released a new album. Following two successful LPs and several tours, the guys needed some time off to sort out their lives and decide what directions should follow next. So, they took it easy for a while and worked on new material at a slower, but steady pace. Nevertheless, 2014 was a busy year for the band, as they finished and revealed their 3rd studio effort, Heavy Envelope, while touring all around Europe to promote it. Since they are one of the coolest groups in the genre, I wanted to talk more with them about several subjects. I managed to include my interview in their schedule and drummer Steps found the time to answer my questions:
It’s been a while since you guys have released new material! What happened during these 4 years?
A lot of things. There was no break/pause, it’s just we took a slower pace than usual , kidding. Band members were busy with their personal lives and work obligations, especially during 2010-2012. A month long tour took place in 2010, right before the beginning of summer. There were serious recapitulations of what we wanted to do as a band in the future and how to move forward with all things necessary to keep what we have in the long run. We didn’t stop doing rehearsals or crafting ideas. It was only a matter of adjusting the schedule that…
Jess Kahr – bass, Rasmus Rasmussen – keyboards, Jakob Skøtt – drums & Jonas Munk – guitar
One of the most revered and prolific psychedelic rock acts today, Causa Sui, have released a new album, the 3rd part of the Pewt’r Sessions. Straying from the summery vibes of most of their LPs, these spontaneous collaborations with Ron Schneidermann are rather haunting and the most free-jazz oriented volumes in their catalog. It is very interesting to listen to the intense chemistry between the members, as they lay to tape various segments chopped off long jamming sessions. In an attempt for me to gain more insight into the band’s creative process and their thoughts on the music industry today, I contacted guitarist/El Paraiso Records co-owner, Jonas Munk. Luckily, he found some spare time to answer a few questions for SputnikMusic:
So, new year, new album! Tell us more about the latest volume of the Pewt’r Sessions. How did it come to fruition?
We first started doing improv sessions with Ron Schneiderman back in 2006. Since then we’ve played live with him several times and recorded a handful of sessions throughout the years. Some of the sessions from 2009 were eventually released as Pewt’r Sessions 1 and 2 in 2011, and now we’ve just released the third record in the series which was recorded last year in September. It’s the result of an afternoon of improvisations. We recorded roughly four hours of music, I mixed around two hours…
Niko Potočnjak – guitars & Jeremy White – bass, vocals
For those unaware of them, Seven That Spells are a Croatian psychedelic/noise rock band that hails from the 23rd century where rock is dead. They have traveled back in time to our years to change the tragic course of the boring history. These prolific troubadours have recorded 11 ‘observations’ in just over 13 years of existence while also touring the world multiple times. The latest release, IO, is the second part of the ongoing Death And Resurrection Of Krautrock trilogy. Conqueror and founding father, Niko Potočnjak has found some spare time to answer a few questions for Sputnik Music.
Hello! How’s everything going at the Seven That Spells HQ?
All is well. Taking a rest from drugs and other stuff. It’s been one hell of a weekend ha ha ha!
You’ve got a new record out this month, the second part of The Death And Resurrection Of Krautrock, entitled IO. For those who aren’t accustomed to the trilogy, what inspired the concept?
It’s just my vision of how a modern psych band should sound like. The trilogy is a concept – kind of a well known format that allows you to stretch things further. Sometimes one album is really enough though ha ha! Anyway its fun and it makes you focus – no lazy shit here – only lethal stuff.
In contrast to some of your previous albums, both AUM and IO sound more rehearsed rather than focusing on spontaneous…
Hans Magnus “Snah” Ryan (guitar/keyboards/vocals), Kenneth Kapstad (drums/keyboards/vocals), Bent Sæther (bass/vocals/guitar), Reine Fiske (guitar/keyboards/vocals)
Motorpsycho are one of Norway’s finest bands today. Being active for 25 years now, they have been revolving around the progressive/psychedelic hard rock sphere in the past couple of years. However, they are renowned for their occasional musical shape shifting and their vast discography tackles several genres including metal, jazz, pop and even country. Their latest masterpiece, Behind the Sun, was released at the beginning of March and the band started touring their homeland the same month. After a short Chinese stint, they will cross Europe starting May and June. Luckily, bass player and vocalist Bent Saether found some spare time to answer a few questions for Sputnik Music:
You’ve been playing together for 25 years now and that’s a hell of a long time for bands these days. How do you guys feel now as a veteran act? What kept you guys intact and going so strong?
It’s hard to say what the reasons for our longevity are, but I think a few of the following facts may at least partially explain this:
Musically, we at some point early on decided that ‘all music we want to play is Motorpsycho music’. This takes the matter of “staying true” to whatever musical style you happened to play when you started out of the equation, and enables you as an artist to utilize whatever musical style you feel…