Boy howdy, was the underground music scene excited when we heard that bandcamp was extending their very popular Bandcamp Friday promotion for the rest of the year! It’s almost as if bandcamp cares more about people than the federal government of the United States…
But that’s a whole other column. In case you’ve been escaping COVID-19 on your own private island for the past half a year, bandcamp is waiving their revenue shares on the first Friday of each month. That means even more of what you pay to purchase music and merch goes directly to the artists. (No such thing as “Paypal Friday,” unfortunately.) Bandcamp is missing out on millions of dollars every time they do this, so the company is truly putting its money where its mouth is in terms of supporting musicians.
Here are a few humble suggestions for this Friday’s purchases:
Stonecutters — “The Absurdist”
This Kentucky band loves to be on the road, but obviously that hasn’t happened in many months and may not be feasible for an undetermined amount of time. However, these guys still have music for us! Guitarist Nick Burks says of the July 2020 single,
“I was traveling through Arizona in December after tour and the place we were staying had a cheap acoustic guitar. Spending nights in a desert ghost town on the top of a mountain was definitely inspiring. I wanted to write what I saw – endless darkness. The lyrics are about being yourself and not worrying about what others think. Why waste your life trying to please others that could care less about you?”
Wise words indeed. Tune in to Alternative Control’s chat with Nick in our Facebook group on Monday 8/10, 7pm EDT and let him know what you think of the song!
Vestal Claret — Bloodbath (2020 Remix)
This Connecticut doom outfit is having a busy summer! First, Vestal Claret released a brand new self-titled album that reveals the hidden acoustic side of their occult stylings. Then composer and multi-instrumentalist Simon Tuozzoli, who has also handled recording duties for the band throughout their tenure, remixed their debut album Bloodbath. Originally released by Nine Records in 2013, the new version also features a remaster by Arthur Rizk (Code Orange, Power Trip, Owl Maker).
Tuozzoli said of the new version, “Those who know this music will not be betrayed. No parts were replaced or re-recorded. There is solely more clarity and more balance between the instruments, especially with the drums and extra guitar parts. Those who do not know this music, please enjoy it. It is definitely one of our more shocking records lyrically, and is closest we came to the traditional metal of the 80s.”
Moths/The Stone Eye — s/t Split
Puerto Rican progressive metallers Moths teamed up with Philly fuzz rockers The Stone Eye for this split EP of originals and covers. To be released August 21st via Electric Talon Records, it features an original and a cover from each band. The Moths side showcases the band’s unconventional and at times even psychedelic interpretation of stoner metal, while The Stone Eye drives their garage rock gumbo to colossal heights. A highlight for me was TSE’s take on the traditional tune “Wayfaring Stranger” — you guys know that I have a soft spot for folk music.
You can hear Moths’ cover of Black Sabbath’s “Hand of Doom” today, but the rest of it will have to be a surprise. Preorder today to preserve the mystery or wishlist it for the September 4th Bandcamp Friday!
Mothman and The Thunderbirds — “Nomad”
More moths and more Philadelphia! The debut single from this one-man Philly doom outfit, “Nomad” shows promise of a good addition to The Scene. Its riffage is reminiscent of The Sword, Mastodon, and Baroness, with lyrics about a shaman who channels Death to rid the world of an oppressive oligarch. (If 666 people buy this song on Friday and say “Bloody Mary” three times in the mirror, will this happen real life??)
Mothman and The Thunderbirds expect to release a full-length in 2021. For now, enjoy this taste!
Turkey Vulture — Time To Pay
Of course, Ye Olde Editor has some music to plug. (Don’t get mad, brah, this shit takes hours and I do it for free.) Turkey Vulture’s new EP Time To Pay is now available in CD and digital formats. We’ve been called “heavy as fuck,” “bizarre and engaging,” and lots more mostly positive things. Have a listen — and if you like the tunes, you know what to do!
Fun Fact: Simon from Vestal Claret recorded the cello intro on the first track, as well as providing the percussion and ocean noises. It’s like this is all connected somehow… *cough*
Certainly this is not all bandcamp has to offer. Check out our recent reviews (Misery Signals, Khemmis, Brimstone Coven, and Slow Draw, to name a few) for more ideas! What’s on your Bandcamp Friday wishlist??
For more from Alternative Control, find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Soundcloud, and bandcamp. Plus, follow our 2020 coverage playlist on Spotify!
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