Official Site for the Hellbilly Cowpunk Music Outlaws

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Doom Country Music Rundown by London Celtic Punks

Here’s a great run down of the 5 Phantom of the Black Hills albums by London Celtic Punks. Their website states: “The London Celtic Punks are a group of people living in or with connections to London. We are dedicated to the promotion of Celtic-Punk music. That’s the traditional folk music of the Celtic nations (Ireland/Eire, Isle Of Man/Mannin, Scotland/Alba, Wales/Cymru, Cornwall/Kernow, Brittany/Breizh, Galicia/Galiza and Astures) mixed with rock’n’punk.” They really get doom country music, here’s the introduction they wrote for the piece, you can check out the full article HERE.POTBH - doom country music

Phantom of the Black Hills are one of the most innovative bands you will ever hear that has a banjo! This isn’t the Country music of Nashville or the Grand Ole Opry instead its angry polemic over bluegrass banjo, mandolin and upright bass mashed together with raucous punk guitar, blistering drums and dirty, snarling distorted vocals with extreme sound effects and movie dialogue samples. They are one of my favourite bands so I thought I’d attempt to convert a few of you lot too.

The Black Hills are a mountain range in South Dakota famous for the Mount Rushmore memorial of the four presidential heads of Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln carved into the granite. It’s also an area where large populations of Scots and Scots-Irish settled which may explain the areas fondness for moonshine. Production of illegal alcohol that is still widespread today. Another possible by-product of the Celtic on the local population is widespread mistrust of all government. Many see themselves as outlaws and in the Black Hills you are unlikely to find a Vegan coffee shop or demand for stricter gun control laws. Phantom Of The Black Hills are a band that shy away from publicity. From the bandana’s that hide their faces in their videos and photos to their Web-Site and Facebook page that are very careful not to give away any clue as to their identities. 

Scalped – Peek-a-Boo Magazine ‘Aggro Americana’ Review

aggro AmericanaTheir faces are shrouded in a sort of bandana with eyeholes, like a bad outlaw of an imaginary Western encapsulated into an a temporal dimension of aggro Americana.

Phantom of the Black Hills hail from South Dakota and have reached their fifth album showing an eversive attitude that reminiscent of The Clash. A track like “Raised On Fire”, for example, resembles a gift pack with “London Calling” inside.

A raspy, distorted voice is the backbone of each song conducting the traditional instruments (fiddle, banjo, and mandolin) to crash against a wall of guitars and drums, adding a roughness to the fiery climate.

“Wild Witch of the West” is a delicious ballad with special guest vocalist Mather Louth, member of Radio Noir and Heathen Apostles.

The highlights begin with “Dr. Dealer” that advances solemn, justifying the term ‘doom country’ often associated with the group. Harsh guitar and metronomic drums ensure thickness and atmosphere.

“Torchy” seems The Gun Club sharing an insane gig with the Country Gazette while the sinister bells of “Blow It Up” look back to Black Sabbath’s first album, tracing the coordinates of a ride on a heavy-punk carousel. “Chiva”, and “Jeckill and Hide” are two fine silverware pieces, dramatic, pressing and goth-tinged. The imagery of the band is purely Gothic Western, a dusty mosaic, made of abandoned mines and wandering ghosts, faded pictures of bandits and hanged men joined with a powerful anti-establishment soul.

aggro Americana

One more time, Chopper Franklin (The Cramps, Heathen Apostles) is the man in the control room. As ever, he has a very specific and recognizable hand, amalgamating all the components of the dark roots universe (an ideal arc from hellbilly to deathrock) in one shot.

Somewhere, out there, a memory of the ’80s cowpunk spirit has survived thanks to Phantom of the Black Hills and similar groups. However, this time equipped with flamethrower and vitriol.

You can check out Scalped HERE.

Sergio MANGHINA

POTBH on New Gothic Western Site

Heathen Apostles - Gothic WesternPhantom of the Black Hills have been featured on the new Gothic Western site GothicWestern.com, a new collective dedicated to all Gothic Western and Southern Gothic. Check out the write up, then peruse all the features, they have articles on music, movies & TV, fashion, art and lifestyle, all relating to everything Gothic Western. To visit the site and see the article click HERE.

THE Hellbilly Band Deals – Phantom of the Black Hills on eBay

Ratchet Blade Records has put up some great deals for their favorite hellbilly band Phantom of the Black Hills, some of these bundles include the new album Scalped and the new band T Shirt design, as well as previous releases and the classic Phantom “Sword” T shirt design (both in Men’s and Girly T). There are also buttons, stickers, download cards and more! And if you have one of the items you can give it away as a gift and keep the other items for yourself. Click HERE to check them out.

POTBH - hellbilly bandPOTBH - hellbilly band

POTBH Doom Country Album Reviewed in “Ox Zine” (Germany)

POTBH- doom countryOx Zine, the #1 rock music magazine in Germany, has reviewed the Phantom of the Black Hill’s new doom country album Scalped in their latest issue (you can preview and order Scalped HERE). Here is a translation from German:

Ashes on my head: In Ox # 118 I called the last album of the PHANTOM OF THE BLACK HILLS their fifth. Now I learn that the current work “Scalped” is number five in the discography, also in the band are five masked Hellbilly bastards from South Dakota. Sitting in the producer’s chair once again is the former THE CRAMPS bassist Chopper Franklin, and the absolutely insane mix of doom country, rock, industrial music and spoken-word passages is still kinda trashy (to the insane bad Billo cover, which refreshingly tops the unsightly layouts of almost all HAYSEED DIXIE albums). It’s innovative alright and not homogeneous: a classic Bluegrass song like the opener “Wild Witch of the West” and then one with extremely distorted vocals on “One for the Gut”, (which strangely enough reminds me of TURBONEGRO’S “Ass Cobra”), are worlds apart. Definitely a plate that you can sort on the shelf under “Special Interest”.   – Christian Krüger

“Scalped” Review in Uber Rock (UK) – ‘The Hellbilly Genre’

Phantom Of The Black Hills - hellbilly genre

As a sub-genre, the hellbilly genre seems to lie somewhere between bluegrass, country, NOLA-style doom and traditional rock ‘n’ roll. Most popularly brought to global attention by artists such as Hank Williams III, it is a musical style which can, at first, be difficult to understand and then digest. Take, for example, the reaction of her good self when she walked into the UR studio and first heard this particular opus blasting from our tower block sized speaker system: “what the fuck is that shit?” she demanded to know as I turned the mixer up another notch…

“That shit”, as herself so eloquently put it, is the fifth album from POTBH, a band who don’t believe in giving much away, from the bandanas across their faces in all their publicity photos to the paucity of information on both the press release which accompanied the CD and on their Facebook page: it doesn’t even say where they’re from – although the reference to “Black Hills” in their name should be a huge pointer… but, you never know and should never take anything for granted. For all we know, they are either a bunch of hicks from Nowhereville in North Dakota, or a bunch of rich college grads from Hollywood playing at being the former – although, I must admit, I sincerely doubt it!

Whatever the case, POTBH have produced an album that veers from out and country to the lunatic fringe industrialism of Ministry: this is probably understandable, as the only piece of information the band proffer about themselves is that their music would be the result of “Glenn Danzig and Al Jourgensen stayed up all night listening to old Porter Wagoner and Hank Sr. records and drinking homemade corn liquor”. Maybe a bit OTT – but, hey, what band doesn’t overhype themselves – but you get the picture…

My problem with ‘Scalped’ is that there are two songs which absolutely kick ass heavier than a size 11 New Rock to your tailbone. The first is opener ‘Wild Witch Of The West’, which pumps and thumps like a moonshine-fuelled culchie; driven by a snarly snare and characterized by a punked-up banjo, and featuring a lascivious guest vocal from Mather Louth, it sets a mood that almost immediately dissipates. Yes, ‘Raised On Fire’ is a suitable slice of fiddle-fuelled arson, ‘Dr Dealer’ is a leather-clad metallic monster, and ‘Torchy’ is cute in its amalgamation of metal and country grooves – but the album then, from the loud but unfulfilling abrasiveness of ‘Blow It Up’ onwards, slowly peters out until the bonus track of ‘The Reckoning’ drags it kicking and screaming back to life, with its Nick Cave-like Gothicism, hard-ass thrashy guitar riff, snarly snare-led percussive drive and spoken vocal.

Phantom Of The Black Hills – ‘Scalped’ (Ratchet Blade Records/Cockroach Media) By Mark Ashby Read the full review HERE.

“Wild Witch of the West” Video is Live

The new Phantom of the Black Hills video for Wild Witch of the West is live, it is the first music video from the new Phantom of the Black Hills album Scalped, out 8/25/17 on Ratchet Blade Records. It was directed by Chopper Franklin and features Mather Louth from the Heathen Apostles. Wild Witch of the West is an unofficial sequel to the Heathen Apostles video for Fist City, and contains footage from that video shot by Harmony Gerber.

Check out the Pre Sale for Scalped by clicking HERE.

New POTBH Gothic Outlaws T Shirt Design

The Phantom of the Black Hills has released a new T Shirt design, it features an image of the notorious gothic outlaws playing from their upcoming Wild Witch of the West music video. Order now from the POTBH merch store and receive a free sticker and music download. Click HERE to check it out.

gothic outlaws

New “Scalped” Promo Trailer & Pre-Sale

Both the Scalped pre-sale and promo trailer have launched today, the trailer has snippets of some of the new songs and the pre-sale has two great deals, including a free album and early delivery of Scalped. You can check them out HERE.

Cover Art For Upcoming Album “Scalped” Is Released

The cover art for the upcoming Phantom of the Black Hills album Scalped has been released, it is the fifth album for the band and is produced by Chopper Franklin for Ratchet Blade Records. Scalped will be released on August 25th and will be proceeded by the release of the Wild Witch of the West single and music video on August 11th. Check back for more info on this incendiary album.

POTBH Scalped album cover