10 December, 2013

ASG: Scrappy Trip – new video & Blood Drive – full album stream

I guess life is like ‘Scrappy Trip’s opening line (“I didn’t write the rules you know, I merely redefined”) once one gets a grip on it. ‘Scrappy Trip’, videoed by Jason Shi and Wynne Harrington, comes off ASG's May 2013 Relapse Records' release ‘Blood Drive’ which Revolver Magazine included in the top twenty albums of 2013 and which has been named among Google Play's best albums of the year that is about exhale. ASG's ‘Blood Drive’ was recorded with renowned producer Matt Hyde at the Sunset Lodge in Hollywood, California and its captivating art created by Rock Art Lab Malleus. Kindly shop here (Relapse store) or visit either iTunes store/Google Play/Amazon or ASG BandCamp here if you dare to delve into AGS summer music during the off season:
“A commendable summer album that strikes a fine balance between rock fury and accessibility,” [wrote Sputnik reviewer Greg Fisher] “What exactly constitutes an ideal summer album? ASG is a North Carolina outfit that tries to answer this question with its fourth full length ‘Blood Drive’. A delightful cover art already evokes a laid-back summer atmosphere. The quartet follows suit delivering an appropriately sun-drenched brand of stoner rock. They’ve done a grand job of integrating soothing melodies with heavy rock arrangements that place groove-laden guitar riffs at the forefront. … The foursome's uncanny knack for merging melody, groove and energy is clearly in full swing. Thus, ‘Blood Drive’ makes for a perfectly enjoyable summer album that achieves a fine balance between rock fury and accessibility. While the presentation can get overly homogenous at times, the record never ceases to be a legitimately fun listen. ASG are on the cusp of striking gold in the growing realm of pop-soaked heavy rock.” [More here:]

ASG, apparently short for either “amplification of self gratification”, “all systems gone” or “anarchist school for girls”, was formed in 2001 in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina; initially a three-piece instrumental project comprised of guitarist Jason Shi, bassist Andy Ellis and drummer Scott Key. As time passed, ASG relate, and no vocalist was found, Shi was eventually forced to step up to the microphone. Through Volcom Entertainment, the band issued their debut album, ‘The Amplification Of Self Gratification’, in 2003. In 2005, ASG recorded their sophomore album, ‘Feeling Good Is Good Enough’, with (“proper”) producers, Matt Hyde and Phil Caivano. According to reports, ‘Feeling Good Is Good Enough’ “summoned all the band's potential and spawned a thunderous hard rock creation that equaled what the band had been working towards for the past three years”. With added second guitarist, Jonah Citty, ASG recreated the album's sounds live, touring with the likes of MOTORHEAD, THE SWORD, TORCHE and FU MANCHU. In 2007, the band returned with their next album, ‘Win Us Over’, “a vivid, psychedelic, and panoramic thrust that is just as much for the ears as it is for the aura”:
“While the ingredients of stoner rock, psychedelic metal, and angst-ridden punk rock are apparent, ASG doesn’t fit under any particular category. Be you a fan of plain ol’ rock and roll and don sleeveless flannels while sucking down 22 ouncers and gettin’ rowdy - or enjoy waxin’ deep on the bong, ‘Win Us Over’ lives up to it’s namesake,” [reassured the press release]
“ASG mix the best qualities of KYUSS and QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE: the former's bluesy heft and the latter's pop focus. On ‘Win Us Over’, they hone this combination almost to perfection. While not purely metal - the band isn’t afraid to rock - the riffs are stronger and catchier than the vast majority of stoner metal. That’s because ASG write songs, not genre exercises,” [commented Cosmo Lee, AllMusic – more here]
ASG features: Jason Shi - guitar and vocals, Andy Ellis – bass, Scott Key – drums and Jonah Citty – guitar


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