Thursday, January 14, 2016

Toke / Green Fiend

Written by Karen A. Mann.

Fans of hazy, smoked-out sludge will appreciate Toke and Green Fiend, two weed-obsessed North Carolina bands that reference their favorite vice so often you can practically get a contact high just from listening to them. Both bands self-released fine albums in the fall of 2015, but you can get a quick hit of what they’re all about on their upcoming split release, the Cough-inspired Ritual Substance Abuse, Two songs from the release are available on their respective Bandcamp pages.

Toke hails from Wilmington, the port city that also spawned Weedeater and Sourvein. Their contribution to the single is “Four Hours For Hours,” which begins with the sound of a bong being hit, and spirals into a syrupy, bluesy dirge, with some seriously corroded vocals.

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

Green Fiend from Charlotte (home of Antiseen, Young & In the Way and many more) covers the old J.J. Cale chestnut “Cocaine,” which is best known via Eric Clapton’s loose, bluesy version. But Green Fiend covers it in a much more appropriate manner, with vocalist Taddeo sounding like he’s been doing coke non-stop for days and is now on the verge of murdering someone.

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

After listening to the split, check out their individual releases. Toke’s self-titled begins with a slow, raw, sludgy riff. There’s a lot of Sleep, a bit of The Sword and even some Witch Mountain in spots. Toke is at its best on “Winter Wizard,” which has a bluesy bombast that heads straight into Goatsnake territory.

Green Fiend’s four-song has a raw, powerful sound that brings to mind Black Tusk and Bongripper. They indulge in their favorite subject on “3 Minute Toker,” an instrumental track that starts slow, but builds to a galloping riff.

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

You can also check out photos and videos from a recent Toke show over at Karen's blog Mann's World.

Tagged with 2015, Green Fiend, Karen A. Mann, sludge metal, stoner metal, Toke
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