The Sonic Sofa Podcast: Valley of the Sun, Gandalf the Green, and Brant Bjork

Podcast Transcript: I’m The Purlenaut and you’ve landed on the Sonic Sofa, your home for stoner rock reviews and podcasts. Hop on over to to read all the words and hear all the sounds. This month, we’re checking out music by Valley of the Sun, Gandalf the Green, and Brant Bjork. Become one with the Sofa, and prepare for blast off.

Valley of the Sun is a stoner rock band from Cincinnati, Ohio. The group produces driving desert rock with melodic vocals. Their riffy songs are known for being upbeat and positive. Their new album, Old Gods, will be released on May 24th through Swedish label, Fuzzorama Records. Here’s Means the Same.

Gandalf the Green is a three-piece psychedelic doom band from Huddersfield, England. The band produces heavy, fuzzy, riff-centric music, with strong psychedelic vibes. Their new single, A Billion Faces, was released on March 28. It was recorded in Dec, 2018 in Phipps Hall at the University of Huddersfield. Get ready for some heavy stuff. Here’s A Billion Faces.

Brant Bjork is a multi-instrumentalist from Palm Desert, California. His newest album, Jaccoozzi, was released on April 5, and is being advertised as a sort of lost album. The album was recorded in 2010, but immediately shelved. Bjork had gone to a house in Joshua Tree, CA to record material for his next solo album, but personal life changes as well as feeling burned out from extensive recording and touring caused him to change his plans. Bjork decided to scrap his original project and focus on creating improvised jams. This whole track plays like a psychedelic surf song. Here’s Oui.

Thanks for listening to the Sonic Sofa podcast. Check out the Sonic Sofa on Please support the bands by buying their music. If you have music or an artist that you think should be featured on the blog or podcast, contact The Purlenaut at Go in peace and rock on, Sofanauts.

Yung Druid release riffy, 70’s influenced debut album

Yung Druid is a London-based heavy doom, psych quartet with low-tuned, riffy guitars and high-pitched melodic vocals. The group’s music is straightforward and solid, without being too complex. The group creates riffy, sludgy, classic metal, in the vein of Black Sabbath, but with some of the psychedelic sensibilities of softer bands like Dead Meadow and Sleepy Sun.

Ever since the single, Take Me to Your Dealer, dropped back in September of 2018, the groovy lead drew me in and I started keeping an eye out for the full album. Released on Bandcamp in April, Yung Druid’s self titled album is no disappointment: It’s full of high flying vocals, killer guitar leads, and walls of reverb and distortion. The drums sound great in the mix, with heavy cymbals that are really allowed to ring out and sing. The guitars and bass are down-tuned and heavy, and the vocals never struggle to hit the high notes.

The album officially releases on June 1, 2019 through Totem Cat Records. A limited run of 300 vinyl records is available for purchase on Bandcamp. Hopefully the band reissues more units for the June release as supplies are already limited (32 remain at the time of writing this).

Take Me to Your Dealer (5:56) is the album’s riffy opener. It’s a groovy, psych-doom song with X-Files inspired lyrics and a trippy last half that feels like you’re being taken away on an alien abduction trip.

Sleepy Eyes (6:47) is filled with commanding riffs and has some cool change-ups. Two vocal tracks create nice harmonies throughout the song. Heavy distortion on the guitars and lots of reverb on the vocals give this song some great psychedelic qualities.

Underneath the Aching Sky (4:35) is a shorter headbanger with some seriously catchy guitar and vocal hooks. The vocals carry some echoes of Ozzy and Geddy Lee, and the guitar riffs are dark and Sabbath-esque. Pay attention for the awesome sounding china cymbal.

Lung (4:47) takes a break from the heaviness is much softer. The vocals are a little more laid back and the song has some great guitar solo work.

After a hard hitting intro, Went into a Wooden Room (6:24) features a standout bass line guides the way into a psychedelic audioscape. The track grooves along and takes its time unfurling itself.

Morning Come (4:26) finishes the album strong. The closing song featuring strong guitar riffs, a solid rhythm section, and beautiful vocal melodies.

If you’re into 70’s influenced retro rock with tons of riffs, high flying vocals, and plenty of stoner lyrics, look no further than Yung Druid. Check out the music video which is just as trippy and spaced out as the music. The video also has tin-foil hat wearing aliens, so go for it!

A Billion Faces, the heavy new single by English metal band, Gandalf the Green

Gandalf the Green is a three-piece psychedelic doom band from Huddersfield, England. The band produces heavy, fuzzy, riff-centric music, with strong psychedelic vibes.

Their new single, A Billion Faces, was released on March 28. It was recorded in Dec, 2018 in Phipps Hall at the University of Huddersfield and is a follow up to their September 16 release, King of the Ashes. It’s a long song, clocking in at 13 and a half minutes.

The composition contains three sections, separated by brief pauses. The guitar and bass are fuzzy and tuned low and the drums sound huge. Flint’s voice has a yell-like quality: aggressive without sacrificing melody, much like vocals on Elder’s self-titled album or Sleep’s Dopesmoker.

The first section opens with a dark and deep bass melody which is soon complemented by surprising clean guitar tones and drums. Soon, the song builds into a heavy, chugging headbanger.

After the first part fades and the second sections opens, the band explores the riff with a groovier feel featuring plenty of delay, wah pedal, and overdrive. The beautiful harmonic plucks on the guitar set the tone for the song. Flint’s vocals return briefly for a chorus reprise before things venture off into more exploratory jamming.

The third section of the song is completely instrumental and very heavy. It again explores the same heavy riff from the beginning, but this time in a more urgent, intense fashion, like a stomping, doom march. The song slows down until it sonically unravels into a wall of screams and feedback, bringing the song to a dramatic end.

The song can be purchased on Bandcamp. Also, check out the song and concert dates below.

Tour dates

April 21 Red Halo Live Sound – Manchester, England

May 5 Brewery Tap – City of Bradford, England

May 18 The Fenton – Leeds, England