24 September, 2013

Kongh: Counting Heartbeats – reissue


Is it me, or have days recently become shorter than 24 hours? And if you, like me, need to slow down, the mighty KONGH just might be the answer you are looking for. Agonia Records is reissuing KONGH's critically acclaimed debut album ‘Counting Heartbeats’ as deluxe digipack with artwork by Seldon Hunt, with a bonus CD including the 25-minute long ‘Drifting On Waves’ from the 2008 split LP with OCEAN CHIEF, and the full 2006 demo. The reissue is limited to 1,000 copies worldwide and since the first batch of CDs comes with an exclusive silver-print shirt – hurry up and order this gem here (Agonia e-store).

Guitarist and vocalist David Johansen and drummer Tomas Salonen know full well that no matter one's musical background, drinking large amounts of beer on weekends will eventually bring one to explore the depths of heaviness. With a common desire to play monstrously heavy music, and exhibiting a total disdain for restrictions in terms of structure and length of songs (since 2004 in Vetlanda, Sweden), they, naturally, by 2005 came to regard themselves as KONGH. The following year, they decided to record four full songs they have written, and named the 45-minute recording ‘Demo 2006’:

KONGH have become a trio when bassist Oskar Rydén joined in; as such the band had signed their first album deal with Swedish label Trust No One Recordings and had once again entered the studio in Vetlanda. Leaving nothing to chance, KHONG released their debut album, ‘Counting Heartbeats’, on a crucial date of 07/07/07. Great reviews, good album sales and praise followed as expected: ‘Counting Heartbeats’ was nominated for a P3 Guld award (a music prize which is annually is awarded by the Swedish radio station Sveriges Radio P3) in the “Best rock/metal album” category:

KONGH's 60-minute opus consisting of five tracks, ‘Shadows Of The Shapeless’, was issued through Trust No One Recordings in Europe, while Seventh Rule Recordings distributed the band's sound to U.S. public for the first time:
“The lone guitar - sometimes clean, other times hugely distorted - drifts atop a swollen river of bass and drum throb. The guitarist, David Johansson, also sings, in a voice that can manage a dreamy croon but more often opts for a gravelly roar reminiscent of NEUROSIS. The rhythm section has more than one trick up its sleeve, though, sometimes opting for a bluesy swing that recalls Swedish hard rockers NOVEMBER, and on ‘Voice Of The Below’, the band launches into a SABBATHy stomp. There’s one short track here, ‘Tänk På Döden’, but one could hardly call it a single – it’s an instrumental interlude that’s just as spiritually desolate and crushingly heavy as its longer brethren, with a dash of Neil Young in the guitars,” [appreciated Phil Freeman, AllMusic – more here:]

In February 2013, KONGH's third album, consisting of four tracks which translate into 45 minutes of music plus guest appearance by guitarist John Doe from CRAFT, was released through Agonia Records. Recorded at Teknikkompaniet in Vetlanda, Sweden by Peter Lundin and mixed and mastered by CULT OF LUNA Magnus Lindberg, listen to the ‘Sole Creation’s opening and closing tunes below and download the truly touching ‘Skymining’ free of charge here (SoundCloud), generosity of Agonia Records:
KONGH features: David Johansson - guitar, bass and vocals, Tomas Salonen – drums and Olle Hedenström - bass (live)

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