Harsh Toke / Joy / Sacri Monti – Burnout!


San Diego is starting to become known for its heavy psych scene, as several stoner jam bands have followed in the wake of Earthless. This three-way split from Tee Pee Records captures three of them: Harsh Toke, Joy and Sacri Monti, all of whom have likely already shared a stage, or even a split EP with Mitchell/Eginton/Rubalcaba. With that said, I wouldn’t call this triple 7” split a perfect introduction to the SoCal psych scene, as four of the six songs on here are classic 70’s covers. That’s nothing unusual for a split EP, mind you…

With these being three separate records packaged together, you could really play them in any order you like, or even use one of them as a Frisbee/coaster if you so desired. In any case, the digital promo suggests that Harsh Toke be played first, with a couple of Roky Erikson covers — “Burn the Flame” and “Bermuda.” The former starts things off on a bluesy note, with some freaky vocals that sound halfway between Arthur Brown and Screaming Jay Hawkins. “Bermuda” sounds almost punk-rock in its approach, channelling the garage-rock sounds of The Stooges or the MC5.

Joy offers up an original number in “Your Time Ain’t Long,” which sounds kinda like a cross between Deep Purple and Blue Cheer. They also throw in a cover of “Spaceship Earth” by a band called Road—which I admittedly haven’t heard before. This is a pretty decent track, though, falling somewhat between Black Sabbath and “In a Gadda-da-Vida,” with some ripping guitar work, to boot!

Sacri Monti weighs in with an original and an Atomic Rooster track, although the former, a tune called “Over the Hill” kinda reminds me of the Rooster’s “Death Walks Behind You.” Still, I am impressed that two of the three bands on this compilation actively make use of the organ, an oft underrated heavy-psych instrument. The actual cover, “Sleeping for Years,” comes in hot and heavy with some slick guitar licks and screaming organ. Like I said, both of these tunes sound like coulda been from the same band…

Alas, while this may or may not lead you to see out more Sacri Monti or Harsh Toke, this split is still a pretty fun little listen—especially when you don’t have to change the record on the turntable six times in the process! 😉

Harsh Toke + Joy + Sacri Monti – Burnout! – OUT JUNE 23RD!

Seahawks/Stamps/Flames/Zags/Jays/Raptors fan and lifelong metal head with a beer gut and a self-deprecating sense of humour. Reviewer/blogger (Yon Senior Doomsayer) for Hellbound.ca.

8.0 Rating