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    The best music you're not listening to.™ Reviews of lost classics and obscure titles. Unheralded bands and songwriters. New bands deserving of greater attention. The site for the music omnivore. It's all here, on the Ripple Effect 

  • The Ripple Effect

    A Ripple Conversation With Leo Spauls

    When I was a kid, growing up in a house with Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, and Simon and Garfunkel, the first time I ever heard Kiss's "Detroit Rock City," it was a moment of musical epiphany. It was just so vicious, aggressive and mean. It changed the way I listened to music. I've had a few minor epiphany's since then, when you come across a band that just brings something new and revolutionary to your ears.

     

    What have been your musical epiphany moments?

     

    There have been a few of those. One was when I heard Beach Boys "God Only Knows", with those contrapuntal experiments with the vocals. I never knew pop music could be so complex and so beautiful. Another one was Joe Zawinul with "The Rise and Fall of the Third Stream", with that superb keyboard sound. I suppose "Smells Like Teen Spirit" was one of those moments, although I didn't admit it at the time. I was having a Deep Purple period and started to play the Hammond organ at that point in my life. And from a classical perspective, I wanted to become a conductor when I heard Schnittke's Faust cantata.

     

    Talk to us about the song-writing process for you. What comes first, the idea? A riff? The lyrics? How does it all fall into place?

     

    I am a pianist, so I usually start with the piano. I am trying to find some chords and melodies I like. Then I go to my computer, adding a few loops. On the last album, "Heaven's Deep Blue Sky" (2018), we recorded everything with real instruments, Mike Garson (David Bowie's pianist) sending his piano recordings from LA. This time we are doing a more electronic production. It's pop music, based on synthesisers and piano. When we play live, we go on as a rock-pop band, with drums and guitars.

     

    Who has influenced you the most?

     

    David Bowie was and still is the most influential artist to me. I listen to his music frequently, and It's lovely when I discover an interview or a concert I haven't seen on Youtube. I had the chance to interview him once when he planned his 50th birthday and did a Madison Square Garden show. I would have loved to work with him. If I had believed a little more in myself back then, maybe that could have happened. However, working with Mike Garson is the next best thing.

     

    Where do you look for continuing inspiration? New ideas, new motivation?

     

    I try to listen to an album a day, and I tune in to BBC6 every night. If you listen to such a quantity of music, the songs sometimes keep ringing in my sleep. However, I rarely try to imitate other artists and seldom play covers, so what level they influence me is probably easier for others to tell. Nevertheless, an artist I have been listening to is St. Lenox. I have never met him, but I follow him on social media. I particularly like his piano playing. He uses many chord changes, which is a bit old fashioned these days, but I like it.

     

    We're all a product of our environment. Tell us about the band's hometown and how that reflects in the music?

     

    Since it's three bands, it's not so easy to tell. We have one in Stockholm, one in Berlin and one in London. Although Sweden exports a lot of music, I've never felt it a very creative environment, maybe in the '90s when there were still clubs to play. Unfortunately, there is no indie scene here anymore, and live bands are a thing of the past. However, if you are into EDM, I suppose it's a great place to be.

     

    Where'd the band name come from?

     

    We came up with the name Leo Spauls & the Dramas. But we never used it. It might reflect something of my past when I wasn't on medication for mental illness.

     

    You have one chance, what movie are you going to write the soundtrack for?

     

    One of the best scores ever written is probably Hellraiser I and II. I wish I had written those. The score to David Cronenberg's "Naked Lunch" is another favourite, and Bernardo Bertolucci's "The Sheltering Sky". When I was young, I was open to writing all kinds of music, but as you get older, you realize there isn't enough time to fulfill your dreams.

     

    You now write for a music publication (The Ripple Effect?). You're going to write a 1,000 word essay on one song. Which would it be and why?

     

    That would be Bob Dylan's "Murder Most Foul". I haven't had the time yet to sit down and go through it properly, so this is an excellent opportunity to do so.

     

    Come on, share with us a couple of your great, Spinal Tap, rock and roll moments?


    I found myself in a fistfight with Swedish producer Andreas Kleerup some years ago. He is mainly known for his collaboration with Robyn on "With Every Heartbeat". It was during the Ingmar Bergman festival at Fårö. I happened to mention something about his drug abuse, which he had talked openly about in the media. He went crazy and floored me with one blow. We still haven't talked about what happened. But no hard feelings on my part. It was a stupid thing to say.

     

    Tell us about playing live and the live experience for you and for your fans?

     

    We've mostly played venues in Sweden and Germany. I enjoyed playing Monarch Berlin. It's a very indie venue. It's at Kottbusser Tor, and the U-Bahn is running outside the windows. There is a recording of that show that you can find on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/281156345 However, the focus is now on the UK. There are so many venues in London that I want to play. Of course, I hope they are still there, but you never know.

     

    What makes a great song?

     

    A great song is a song that is written out of joy. Or pain. It needs to be an honest song. Something you tell from your heart. And don't make it too complicated. It takes a lot of courage to write from that spirit and keep things simple. But, if you are a genius, you write lines like "All you need is love", and it works.   

     

    Tell us about the first song you ever wrote?

     

    Well, it's not on our repertoire. I'm not even sure which song I should consider as the first. I wrote some very bizarre music in my early teens. I'm not sure I would even call it music. Perhaps poetic attempts with a musical background. It had some storytelling in it, and a Velvet Underground vibe. Maybe I should go back and listen to it again if I can find the tapes.

     

    What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

     

    I think all three songs we recorded with Mike Garson are outstanding. Especially "Every Night and Day", which is just Mike on piano and me. You can stream it on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/2KMjoydqjLzzlV1sq6SWRr?si=vXJvjCqZTHeVP5FOKWEyfw&dl_branch=1Also, the three new singles we've released this year are all very great songs, in my opinion.

     

    Who today, writes great songs? Who just kicks your ass? Why?

     

    Arcade Fire is a great band. I saw them in Stockholm a few years ago. That made me like them even more. I like that Canadian mix of French and English.

     

    Vinyl, CD, or digital? What's your format of choice?

     

    Vinyl yes. But I'm as lazy as everyone else. So I use digital daily.

     

    Whiskey or beer? And defend your choice

     

    I'm a wine person. But I have a whiskey from time to time. A Laphroaig if available. I stopped drinking beer many years ago when I realized it makes you gain weight. Wine and whiskey do that too, but less, I think. Perhaps it depends on how much you drink.

     

    We, at the Ripple Effect, are constantly looking for new music. What's your home town, and when we get there, what's the best record store to lose ourselves in?

     

    The only one I know in Stockholm is Pet Sounds. I haven't been there for a while, but I hope they are still open. Vinyl is selling a bit again, from what I've understood.

     

    What's next for the band?

     

    We are releasing three singles this year on the Animal Farm label: "Show Me Your Love", "Mehringdamm", and "Moon Sign". So that's the most important thing that happens this year. Also, this time we are focusing on the UK market, so that's a big step. You can find the songs on all streaming services.

     

    Any final comments or thoughts you'd like to share with our readers, the waveriders?

     

    I hope you will come and see us live when we go on the road again. If you like our music, please leave a comment on Twitter.

     

    https://twitter.com/LeoSpauls



    OMNIUM GATHERUM RELEASE BRAND NEW SINGLE AND VIDEO FOR “FORTITUDE”

    Finnish melodic death metal masters OMNIUM GATHERUM release their new single and music video for “Fortitude”. The track follows the release of “Paragon” and “Reckoning”, which are all off their forthcoming album Origin, out on November 5th worldwide via Century Media Records. Purchase the track on all digital platforms and watch the music video, which was directed, filmed and edited by Jari Heino and features aerial footage from Jani Vihavainen, HERE.

     

    ”’Fortitude’ was filmed at Munapirtti, an island in the Southeast Finland, near Kotka. This cabin is the sacred sanctuary, our secret lair in the woods, where we have rehearsed many many bandcamps before entering the studios to record new albums since ‘New World Shadows’. Isolated from the world,” states OMNIUM GATHERUM about their latest music video.

    Origin will be available as Ltd. CD Digipak, Gatefold LP and as digital album. All physical formats can be pre-ordered HERE.

     

    OMNIUM GATHERUM Tour Dates:

    04.11. Helsinki – Tavastia

    05.11. Kouvola – House Of Rock

    06.11. Turku – Utopia

    10.11. Hämeenlinna – Suistoklubi

    11.11. Jyväskylä – Lutakko

    13.11. Tampere – Olympia

    26.11. Leipzig – Hellraiser

    27.11. Salzburg – Rockhouse

    28.11. Wien – Szene

    30.11. Köln – Essigfabrik

    01.12. Utrecht – De Helling

    03.12. Paris - La Machine Du Moulin Rouge

    04.12. Seyssinet Pariset - Ilyade

    05.12. Strasbourg - La Laiterie

    06.12. Nuremberg – Hirsch

    07.12. Prague – Futurum

    08.12. Berlin – Metropol

    10.12. Stockholm – Klubben

    11.12. Oslo – Vulkan

    12.12. Gothenborg – Pustervik

    13.12. Copenhagen – Pumpehuset

    14.12. Hamburg – Grünspan

    15.12. Aschaffenburg – Colos-Saal

    16.12. München – Backstage Werk

    17.12. Mannheim – MS Connexion

    18.12. Pratteln – Z7

    19.12. Stuttgart – Im Wizemann

    20.12. Bremen – Tivoli

     

    OMNIUM GATHERUM is Jukka Pelkonen (vocals), Markus Vanhala (guitars and clean vocals), Aapo Koivisto(keyboards), Mikko Kivistö (bass and clean vocals), and Atte Pesonen (drums).

     

    Follow OMNIUM GATHERUM:



    A Ripple Conversation With Korsunnuz

    When I was a kid, growing up in a house with Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, and Simon and Garfunkel, the first time I ever heard Kiss's "Detroit Rock City," it was a moment of musical epiphany. It was just so vicious, aggressive and mean. It changed the way I listened to music. I've had a few minor epiphany's since then, when you come across a band that just brings something new and revolutionary to your ears.

     

    What have been your musical epiphany moments?

     

    I’d have to cite “low” by Bowie for really opening me up to the possibilities music offers. It tore up the rule book and I love that. “Bullhead” by melvins for showing heavy can be not necessarily metal.

     

    Also “the action is go” by Fu Manchu for reminding me that this kinda music can be just crazy fun.

     

    Talk to us about the song-writing process for you. What comes first, the idea? A riff? The lyrics? How does it all fall into place?

     

    Korsunnuz is all about the groove. It all starts with having a feel that has motion within it. We wanna be heavy but we want people to tap their feet..

     

    Who has influenced you the most?

     

    Other than the epiphanies mentioned. I do love josh homme and his various bands. It’s stoner sure but there’s a post punk thing going on there. A different range of influences and an emotional range .

     

    Where do you look for continuing inspiration? New ideas, new motivation?

     

    Well cinema for sure. You may detect George millers fury road getting referenced allot. And that is a standout film of the last 20 years. Not the most art house choice perhaps but I love it.

     

    There is a bit of escapism in the lyrics too I’ll admit that. Dare I say a midlife crisis ? But America had a profound impact on me. And I love my big American cars. Sure it’s a bit juvenile but that’s done with self awareness.

     

    Thrown into the mix is a love for weird pulp fiction like hp lovecraft despite his world view being dubious at best.

     

    We're all a product of our environment. Tell us about the band's hometown and how that reflects in the music?

     

    Personally I’m from Sheffield. Not called steel city for nothing. But three of us were in a London band about 2000 or so and there’s still a bit of London eccentricity to balance things out.

     

    Sheffield though is very very dear to me personally and it has an amazing history of music for a small city. And a very schizophrenic one. Sure we had def leppard and now BMTH but we’ve also had cabaret Voltaire and drenge.

     

    Where'd the band name come from?

     

    It’s Turkish for “you are blind” but phonetically it evolved from a conversation about how heavy metals are created in the core of an exploding sun.

     

    You have one chance, what movie are you going to write the soundtrack for?


     

    Tough one. I’m so scarred by the ghosts of Mars soundtrack that I wonder how to answer. I mean I love John carpenter and I love anthrax but that made me question how heavy rock could work in cinema.

     

    That said I could see us on the soundtrack to something grindhouse-y. Like death proof . Something very tongue in cheek.

     

    You now write for a music publication (The Ripple Effect?).  You're going to write a 1,000 word essay on one song. Which would it be and why?

     

    Probably “show myself out” as that’s a song about personal tragedy and my own battle with depression and anxiety. It’s a cathartic piece and a contrast to our otherwise escapist tone.

     

    Come on, share with us a couple of your great, Spinal Tap, rock and roll moments?

     

    Corridor surfing in Austria. This involves huge amounts of fairy liquid and admittedly cocaine. It was a while back.

     

    Rob green across America. This involved recreating a football howler in front of American landmarks.

     

    Tell us about playing live and the live experience for you and for your fans?

     

    Wear ear protection. Take that as you will .

     

    What makes a great song?

     

    Economy. Groove. Hooks. Attitude.

     

    What one single album do you wish that you'd written or performed on, and why?

     

    Superunknown by soundgarden. It’s perfect start to finish. It takes risks and they all work.

     

    What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

     

    I’m never satisfied. I think that’s the way to be. Humility is how you get better.

     

    Who today, writes great songs? Who just kicks your ass? Why?

     

    I mentioned ghost. But huge props to royal blood too. My favourite current band are all them witches. I’d love to have half their ability and feel.

     

    Vinyl, CD, or digital? What's your format of choice?

     

    Well vinyl does have a certain smell. Does that sound crazy. It has a way of evoking memory. My first purchase were on vinyl. So maybe it brings back that first love moment.

     

    Whiskey or beer?  And defend your choice


     

    Beer does pile the pounds on. But whiskey can have an effect on the old liver and pancreas and the rest. Either case quality over quantity is what we aspire to but so often fail at.

     

    We, at the Ripple Effect, are constantly looking for new music. What's your home town, and when we get there, what's the best record store to lose ourselves in?

     

    Record junkee are the obvious choice. They have a nifty venue too with some killer bands.

     

    What's next for the band?

     

    Blood, tears, toil and sweat.

     

    Any final comments or thoughts you'd like to share with our readers, the waveriders?

     

    Music is it’s own reward. Love and peace to all people. Remember. It’s just a ride.

     




    This Friday - High Desert Queen Descends!🎸

    If there's one band who have really made a mark on the Ripple Music community this year it's been High Desert Queen. Signed by our dear friend Blasko as part of his Blasko Presents series, these guys have come to represent all it means to be a Ripple band. They are passionate, hard working, focused on the community, and have some stellar music. Their new record Secrets Of The Black Moon is masterful.

     

    Check it out here: https://music.ripple-music.com/hdq

     

    But yeah - over the last year this band has jumped from peak to peak. They organized Ripple Fest Texas, they've played countless dates around the South and they're already gearing up for more albums.

     

    This record though is a monster. It was mixed by Karl Daniel Lidén of Lowrider and sounds gorgeous. There are simply so many layers to it and it really is a stoner rock tour de force. Fans have been going crazy and it's clear that this band is going to make an impact on the scene for years to come.

     

    Grab the album today on CD, black vinyl or as a gold LP or even a gorgeous violet/pink splatter, all physical formats are on the verge of selling out so act fast!

     

    Just head here: https://music.ripple-music.com/hdq

     

    Tell us if you dig it!

    The Ripple Squad

     

    PS: You might have heard but there's an ongoing vinyl shortage meaning it's harder than ever to press records for you guys. If you want your copy of this High Desert Queen album on vinyl, and we know you o, then act fast and pick it up today! Just head here: https://music.ripple-music.com/hdq



    The Xroadie Files

    Mythopoeic Mind- Hatchling

    Pål Selsjord Bjørseth- Keyboards/Trumpet, Ola Mile Bruland- Bass/Euphonium, Steinar Børve: Saxophones/ EWI/Keyboards/Programming, Trond Gjellum- Drums/Percussion/Programming, Veronika Hørven Jensen- Vocals, Anders K. Krabberød- Guitar, Guest musician- Lars-Jarand Bakkelund- Bassoon

     

    Fear Fiesta take a trip back in time to the funky grooving prog rock of the 70s and enjoy the trip. Winter of 73 close your eyes and drift away in your imagination with some amazing musicianship. Fog Vision soft melodic have you floating in your minds eye. Cottage Of Lost Play the emotional music just envelops your senses. Hatchling just let the music take you into special places in your imagination.

     

     

    In Veil- Lunatic

    Ady Cernea – Instrumentals, Haysi Veil – Vocals

     

    Salome get up dance groove and just enjoy the musical journey Lunatic pulsating rhythms that just envelop you. Daddy industrial heavy riff great vocals music. Slow Lane lost in the depth of dark imagination. Whatcha Got I Want just sing chant and let the music pull you in. Spider jus take a trip in the depths of your imagination.

     

     

    DemiAura- The Ascendant

    Chelsea Wrathchild- Vocals, Jonathon Gabriel Jr- Keyboards, Keith Hearney- Drums, Bobby Chavez- Guitar

     

    Pleiadian scorching leads heavy riffs pounding drums with amazing musicianship and soaring vocals. Heavy Skies just take one magical musical mind trip. Between Two Fires the music slowly envelops your very spirit. Through The Ages soft melodies that just pulls you in as it builds in intensity. The Dreaming close your eyes and take a prog rock psychedelic journey. Antikythera steady beats amazing vocals with a crunchy riff. Escaping The Event Horizon the emotional music has you drifting on a cloud of memories with some searing leads. Shining Through lost in thoughts dreams and emotions. Perfidy flowing melodies just takes you back in memories. Equinoz fist pumping head banging prog rock magic.

     

     

    Laurenne Louhimo- The Reckoning

    Netta Laurenne – Vocals, Noora Louhimo – Vocals, BG Vocals- Tuomas Yli-Jaskari/ Vili Itapelto, Sampo Haapaniemi- Drums, Pasi Heikkila- Bass, Vili Itapelto- Keyboards, Guitar- Nino Laurenne/Teemu Mantysaari/ JC Haittunen, Guitar Solos- Mikko Kosonen/ Teemu Mantysaari/ JC Haittunen/ Samy Elbanna/ Nino Laurenne/ Mika Tyyska/ Mike Barber, Keyboard Solos- Vili Itapelto/ Jukka Karinen

     

    Time To Kill The Night pounding drums crunchy riffs thundering bass with amazing vocals. The Reckoning close your eyes and let the emotions envelop you as the music builds. Tongue Of Dirt crunchy riffs thundering drums screaming guitars soaring keyboards with powerful vocals. Striking Like A Thunder scorching guitars soaring vocals with a steady beat. Bitch Fire fist pumping head banging metal magic. Hurricane Love close your eyes and drift away in your dreams and memories. To The Wall will have the entire crowd on its feet fist pumping head banging and chanting. Viper's Kiss the emotional music and vocals just send shivers down your spine. Walk Through Fire powerful vocals thundering drums thumping bass with crunchy riffs. Dancers Of Truth floating on a cloud of melodies.

     

     

    Blutengel- Erlosung The Victory Of Light

    Chris Pohl- Vocals/Programming, Ulrike Goldman- Vocals

     

    Illuminate my Soul take one interesting mind trip in your dreams. Wir sind das Licht the eerie tone envelop your senses as the pulsating rhythm draw you in. We are not dead lost in the depths of your imagination. Seasons the keyboards just let you drift into nothingness. Wer ist d ein Meister? Industrial gothic dance music. Deine Dämonen just let the music pull you in ad take you away. I am the Darkness drifting in dark dreams. Erlöse mich strange musical tones and pulses envelop your very being. Wie Sand just dance groove and enjoy as you clap along. No Religion lost in the dark dreams and emotions. Darkness awaits us floating away in your imagination. We fall thumping bass interesting sounds with gothic vocals. The Victory of Light pulses and dance beats let you groove the night away. Hand in Hand just close your eyes and ream.

     

     

    -Xroadie