THE LINUS PAULING QUARTET
15 Janaury 2016 (LP)
15 April 2016 (Digital Album)
Vincebus Eruptum Records, ITALY
Though still mid-summer, the Linus Pauling Quartet found itself stranded in Kashmir as a freak blizzard left them lost and separated from all but one of their guides somewhere in the Pir Panjal mountain range. They had set out to find the mystical Tube Lords whom they believed were in possession of the sacred Eightfold Tube of Saṃsāra but the unusual storm refused them passage. Their only other recourse, according to their remaining guide Ti Ying, were the long abandoned mines underneath the mountain but this, if tales speak true, was a course for only the foolhardy or the insane.
Undaunted, the band gathered its remaining horses and together carried whatever they could. Food and supplies would need to be sacrificed to allow for the precious gifts they had reserved for the Tube Lords. These offerings, culled from years of careful scholarship, would be their one chance at attaining passage through the main gate of the lost city. Ancient texts suggested that if the offerings pleased the Tube Lords, an audience would be granted. However, these same texts were notably bereft of any detail of what fate befell those who had displeased the Tube Lords.
The mines, long feared by travelers, proved to be a ghostly scene of past horrors. Strewn around were the bones and artifacts of prior explorers, armies, and adventurers. All seem to have met a similar fate; some inexplicable force had picked them up and hurled them to their deaths, leaving them in heaps along the walls. Stephen Finley was no babe in the woods when it came to such matters. His leadership was borne out of years of adventuring and while he had seen much gorier scenes of carnage, none matched the brutal efficiency that lay before him. It is at times like this where his first lieutenant, Clinton “Hydro” Heider, was invaluable. Heider was, like Finley, a seasoned adventurer but he possessed an encyclopedic knowledge of ancient worlds like no other – a skill he claims he fine tuned from years of herbal training.
“What do you make of this, Hydro?” asked Finley.
“Shēngbō gōngjí,” said Heider with a matter of fact Texas drawl, as he examined the crushed armor of one of the fallen.
“Shēngbō gōngjí,” Heider repeated as he stood up and pointed towards the darkness ahead, “Sonic Attack. A wave of sound so powerful that it picked these fellers right up and smashed them against that wall right there. ”
“Ti Ying,” he said turning and smiling to their guide, “Your ancestors done good. All these bodies and hardly a dent? That there is what you call fine architecture. Now, from the look of all these unlucky fellers, I’d say we’re the first one’s to cross this path in at least 500 years? Lots o’ Spanish and Portuguese fellers layin’ about ‘xeptin’ that group o’ Cossacks over yonder. Nope, been real quiet for a long time. Makes me wonder how you or anyone would know about these here mines in the first place.”
“It is only known to locals,” she explained, “Outsiders first heard of it hundreds of years ago and as you can see, their efforts proved futile. You know as well as I that as these explorations failed to return, your kings dismissed it as folly and moved their explorations to more fruitful ventures. As they did so, the tales faded from history into long forgotten myth – but be assured this is no myth. It is all very true.”
“And the folks behind the Shēngbō Gōngjí. They lookin’ at us right now? Sizin’ us up?”
“No, by my ancestors, I swear to you that those behind the weapons are long dead. Their exacting standards of purity of sound were such that only a few could operate them, much less maintain them. No, Shēngyīn de shān is long silent. You have nothing to fear … here.”
“Shēngyīn de shān?” asked Charlie Naked, the youngest of the adventurers.
“Mountain of Sound,” explained Heider, “Up ahead there, that’s no army of humans. Nope, what lay ahead is an army of amplifiers like no one’s ever seen.”
As they approached they saw what Heider had described – an endless wall of amplifiers that stretched as far as the eye could see. Row upon row they stood silently, as the bodies they had just witnessed belied their eerie reticence.
“Larry Liska,” hollered Finley. “You care to stay behind and look into this?”
“Sure thing!” replied an enthusiastic Liska. With years of engineering experience under his belt, if anyone was going to repair the mountain of sound, it would be him.
As Liska grabbed his tool kit, Finley pulled him over and whispered in his ear. “Well, make sure you do. I’d prefer not to, but if our tea party doesn’t go like we hope, your handiwork may have to become our Plan B.” Liska tipped his hat somberly and continued on alone.
“We continue this way,” said Ti Ying pointing North.
The party continued until the mines opened onto a frozen land of ice and snow, midnight sun, and hot springs flowing. Above them stood the temple. A beacon of red plastered near the peak of the mountain. Glowing braziers lay on each side marking a path of snow covered stairs. Slowly, they made their way up. When they approached the gates, two figures called out to them.
“My name is Stephen Finley. I lead a small group to plead with you to allow me audience with the Tube Lords. I seek the Eightfold Tube of Saṃsāra.”
“The tube is not for mortals such as you,” shouted the commander of the guards. “Be gone!”
“Please, sir. We bring offerings for the Tube Lords to prove our worthiness and to demonstrate that we mean no harm.”
“Very well then. Send one of your party forward and have them lay out your offerings on the altar before the gates.”
Finley moved forward with a rucksack strapped over his shoulder. He approached the altar with trepidation, looked up towards the guards, and slowly lifted the bag over the altar. Turning it upside down, pedals of all varieties tumbled onto the marble. The bag empty, Finley stretched out his arms and bowed with a smile to the guards.
“Step back,” shouted the commander, “We shall see if your offering is worthy. Feng, go below and inspect the pedals!”
“At once, commander,” Feng replied and quickly repelled down the gates and approached the altar.
“What do you see, Feng?”
“Glorious boxes, commander! Truly glorious!” Feng shouted back as he reached into the pile with wide-eyed wonder, “An RMC Wizard Wah. An Electro-Harmonix Big Muff, An Xotic EP Booster, An Ibanez Ts9, A Univox Super-Fuzz, a Wampler Faux Tape Echo, a Roland Space Echo, a TC Electronics Viscous Vibe, a Paul Cochrane Timmy Drive… ”
Hearing Feng’s joy, Finley smiled, turned, and gave his mates a thumbs-up.
“Wait? What is this?!” Feng shouted with a mixture of disgust and contempt. “What manner of vile trickery is this?!”
Confused, Finley turned to Feng and could barely eke out the words, “No tricks. This is the finest…” before he saw them! In each hand Feng held out two abominations – a Boss DS-1 and a Rocktek Distortion – two pedals that would surely be taken as not simply an insult but as a declaration of war.
“You dare bring these here?!” screamed Feng , “You shall pay for this insult!” In a rage, he raced to the rope and pulled himself up the gate.
Furious, Finley raced back and grabbed Naked by the collar, “Charlie, you bastard! You packed the bag!”
Naked pointed a shaking finger to Ti Ying, “It was her, I swear. She told me to add these!”
“Yes, it was I,” said a victorious Ti Ying, “You come for the same reason those who lie dead before you came – to steal our relics. The Eightfold Tube of Saṃsāra is sacred to my people. We have guarded it for centuries and I’ll be damned if I will allow it to be stolen under my watch!”
“Fool! You’ve doomed us all!” Shouted Finley as the mountain shook, “This is not about your people or mine! I did not come here to steal, I came here to save OUR world! You know of Lemmy?!”
“I do not know what you are talking about,” she replied unconvincingly.
“Do not lie to me!” Finley shouted, “I have seen the writings. I have read the prophecies. Well, while you were here protecting the Tube, he came. Lemmy came to restore balance to Rock. Now the signs point to his passing! His time is nigh and when that time comes, the warrior will return to the edge of time.”
“Even if what you say is true, what does this have to do with The Tube?” countered a skeptical Ti Ying.
“Balance! The balance he brought was more fragile than we all thought. His departure will leave a vacuum! Rock’s very existence hangs on the balance, and with it, all life as we know it on this world! The only thing that can bring balance to this primal force – a force you and your people have long protected – lies in the Eightfold Tube of Saṃsāra! I had hoped to speak with the Tube Lords so that I could reason with them and come to an understanding peacefully but that hope now lies shattered because of your foolishness! Men, retreat to the mines!” And with that, a rain of arrows fell upon them. One of these arrows found its mark, striking Finley in his thigh. The crew and a remorseful Ti Ying, drug him back to safety.
Back in the mines, Finley lay in pain and turned to Heider, “Hydro, I’m going to have to ask you to do the unthinkable. If I know Liska, he’s repaired the Shēngyīn de shān by now. I want you to lead us back to the foot of the temple and talk reason into them. If your words won’t make them see reason, maybe their most feared weapon will.”
He then turned to Ti Ying, “I can’t blame you for what you’ve done. You’ve sworn to protect The Tube and I can’t fault your actions. In truth, I should have been more forthcoming as to our intentions. Now, I have no clue how this will play out but I ask you for one act of penance. I want you to go now to our benefactor in Italy, one Davide Pansolin, and provide him with our last recording.” He handed her a disc and continued,”This recording contains 7 tracks and one digital bonus. Davide will know what to do with it. Should we fail here, this will be the only thing that can save Rock.”
With that Ti Ying walked away remorseful but full of purpose. Later, as she exited the mines where they had first entered, she heard it. The sound she had feared – the distant roar of the Ampalanche.
AMPALANCHE: TECHNICAL DETAILS
15 January 2016 (LP)
15 April 2016 (Digital)
1. Ampalanche 03:51
2. Slave to the Die 07:51
3. Sometimes 08:02
4. Planck 04:38
5. Brisket 05:50
6. Nico 03:13
7. Alive 06:32
Digital Album Bonus Track
8. Vi, de Druknede (We, the Drowned) 49:02
Stephen Finley Bass
Clinton Heider Vocals, Guitars
Larry Liska Batterie
Ramon Medina Vocals, Guitars, Theremin
Charlie Naked Vocals, Guitars, Ebow, Tenor Saxophone
Mlee Marie Flute, Alto Saxophone, Backing Vocals
Chris Kemmerer Cornet, Euphonium
Recorded and Engineered by Stephen Finley @ Digital Warehaus Productions
Assistant Engineers: Andy Deangelo/ Sean Cook (Planck)
Mastered by Mark Kidney @ The Stone Sound
Produced by All Concerned
Executive Production by Davide Pansolin and Paolo Baldo
(c) 2015 The Linus Pauling Quartet, BMI
Music & Lyrics by the Linus Pauling Quartet
(c) 2015 The Linus Pauling Quartet/Brandon R. Brown, BMI
Music & Lyrics by the Linus Pauling Quartet and Brandon R. Brown
Vinyl Edition Details
First press of 500 copies:
- 100 hand-numbered (001/100) copies on coloured (GOLD) vinyl + inner + exclusive poster
- 200 hand-numbered (101/300) copies on coloured (RED) vinyl + inner
- 200 copies on black vinyl
Black new standard VE label
Artwork by Kabuto
The album contains download code (with exclusive track of 49 minutes!).
Available at the Vincebus Eruptum DIRECT STORE!
Planck – Official Video (2015)
Premiered 26 May 2015 as a preview digital single track.
Brisket (est. April 2016)
Amapalanche ( est. Late Summer 2016)