Turned to Stone Chapter 7: End of Age and Gypsy Chief Goliath

One of the best things about Ripple’s Turned to Stone series is that I don’t always like them. There is no “formula” that I can figure out, no trend they choose to follow. Just because I don’t “like” a particular band or release doesn’t mean it isn’t incredible. It just means at that time, in that situation, it’s not for me.

That’s the beauty of an algorithm, right? Like something, get similar music, and welcome to the bubble of happiness! Eventually, the energy gets drained as everything sounds the same, and you end up mindlessly listening to a playlist limited to REO Speedwagon, Journey, Boston, Foreigner with a dose of The Cars to change things up a bit with New Wave edginess.

At least that’s not far off from most algorithms that claim to replicate the Sounds of the 70’s. The thing is, fans of rock and hard rock in the 70’s never asked to be part of that crap. We were left listening to our favorite radio station (in Stereo!), wondering why they were playing the same song they played an hour ago, by a band we once thought was pretty cool. One by one, the great songs of the Album Oriented Rock (AOR) age disappeared. Styx’s Castle Walls got replaced by Blue Collar Man, and the only way a newer generation was gonna hear it was at that strange-but-favorite uncle’s house two states away.

Enter the independent labels, starting with Man’s Ruin and Meteor City, and we got our music back.

The latest slab of “too good for the 70’s” awesomeness comes from Ripple Music, in form of Turned to Stone Chapter 7: Gypsy Chief Goliath/End of Age. If that title doesn’t challenge edible hazed short-term memory, I don’t know what will.

But screw my nostalgia-bashing screed. I owe a serious and public apology to Gypsy Chief Goliath. I’ve never heard of you before, not once. I’ve tried to make amends by buying everything I can off of Bandcamp. My only concern is I might not be listening to anything else for a while.

Gypsy Chief Goliath is not just a throwback. This is informed and reverential Hard Rock like I don’t think I’ve ever heard before. They can throw in some tasteful jazz-inspired chords, funky, and I mean FUNKY rhythm guitar, powered by an insane rhythm section that Santana or even Zappa himself would covet, and finish it off with some of the best vocal work this side of Chicago. The band. If Captain Beefheart sang for Chicago…

But don’t worry, Stoner fans, Black Dwarf will remind you you’re not listening to f-ing Chicago. Gypsy Chief Goliath handle their part of this epic split with class, deft, and they bring the RAWK. Closer Solar Love is on my, admittedly, very short list for song of the year. I bet it don’t budge much…

Please check out this video. Only 7 likes! We gotta change that….

Seeing and hearing is believing

Which brings is to End of Age. If you don’t mind another Styx reference, their part of TTSC7 is like a crystal ball predicting my future. And just like Gypsy Chief Goliath, I head over to Bandcamp, and…

WTF!?! Nothing. Nada. Zip. Dammit…

I admit, End of Age was a jarring experience after the Gypsy dude. Sounds totally different, like it was produced by Kevin R Stars from Uncle Acid and the Dead Beats. At first, it almost sounded like pop, and it took a while to acclimate to it.

Cats Blood, the single released to video on the Ripple YouTube Channel, got me acclimated real quick. Now- I don’t dance very often. It takes something- I don’t know what, exactly- to get me out of my chair and flop around like a 4-year-old OD-ing on Fruity Pebbles, but this one did it. Hold on…it’s happening again…

Click on this while I catch my breath…

These songs, man, I can’t get ’em out of my head. This is the kind of stuff that renews my faith, my love, of hard rock. Critical analysis will ruin the experience, but rest assured the musicianship is there, along with interesting and unpredictable chord changes. This is raw emotion concentrated in a single band.

I have to shake my head at Todd Severin and Ripple. How the heck do they find these bands? Oh yeah, he works with John Gist from Doomed and Stoned, that’s how. Legend.

Look, I’m just gonna come and and write it: BUY THIS ALBUM NOW, before it releases on January 20th. Get it on your Bandcamp collection, and don’t miss a second of it. If you ever loved the sounds of bands doing their own thing, putting every ounce of energy and effort they have in it with songs that make a lasting impression, I think this is for you.

On the other hand, if you think Kilroy Was Here is better than Equinox, you might wanna take a pass.

One thought on “Turned to Stone Chapter 7: End of Age and Gypsy Chief Goliath

  1. Thank you for an awesome perspective! There is a tremendous amount of musical art out in the 🌍 and I look forward to checking these musical selections out. Will they end up on one of my playlists? Who knows, maybe. My eclectic playlists have songs you and others have recommended along with songs from my favorite mainstream artists! I love a soulful lyric, a energetic riff, I just love music 🎶! Looking forward to what you come across next.

Leave a Reply