TOBACCO announces new album ‘Sweatbox Dynasty’ for 19/08 via Ghostly International

May 12, 2016




It’s been almost two decades since baby TOBACCO first plugged in a tape deck, popped the top, and found the dark magic that’s fuelled so many sonic forays into his genre-less bog of beat-blasted hypnagogia and otherworldly yet earthen pop. The Pennsylvanian experimentalist has since helmed countless Black Moth Super Rainbow releases, remixed outsiders as offbeat as HEALTH and unexpected as White Zombie, and produced for MCs ranging from Aesop Rock to Beck. But it’s on his fourth solo album that TOBACCO winds up coining an apt name for his vast empire of mouldering electrified dirt: Sweatbox Dynasty. The new LP — his second for Ghostly International — finds the rural recluse resurrecting an old approach to hack a new path through the muck. This may be his most unintentionally psychedelic and leftfield creation yet, full of rhythms that start and stop like a tractor on its last piston, resonating melodies made to fuel transcendental meltdowns, and vocals that hiss, gurgle, and growl.

On this first taste of things to come, the cheery na-na-na’s and punchy rhythms of “Gods in Heat” contrast against a dirge of chords and heavy distortion, setting the scene for the full length, due out on August 19th.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that fermentation was part of the process. After finishing 2014’s Ultima II Massage, TOBACCO began feverishly working on his next album, and then he stopped. “I felt I’d done everything I set out to do,” he explains. “I thought maybe I’d go away for a long time, and I went a year without even plugging anything in.” But when he was finally at peace with the idea of exile, the music came rushing back and wouldn’t let up.

In a flurry of days and nights he made Sweatbox Dynasty, and while each of his previous LPs felt like a honing of what came before, this one plays like a lush island of oddities unto itself. Except for one thing —in starting over, TOBACCO found himself using a technique from in his nascent days of recording. He laid down every single effect and track on cassette, individually, before transferring it to a sampler and damaging the part as needed en route. The result is wild, and heard all over these songs.

“An album of linear songs is just boring at this point,” says TOBACCO, and he makes extra good on his promise to innovate ever more crudely with Sweatbox Dynasty.


  1.  Human Om
  2.  Hong
  3. Wipeth Out
  4. Gods In Heat
  5. Home Invasionaries
  6. Dimensional Hum
  7. Warlock Mary
  8. Suck Viper
  9. The Madonna
  10. Fantasy Trash Wave
  11. Memory Girl
  12. Let’s Get Worn Away


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