Pretoria based South African experimental rock band Acid Magus have been making waves in the music scene since their 2021 debut release Wyrd Syster. The album was well received by international media, with the likes of tastemakers The Sleeping Shaman saying it’s “cracking with both light and darkness, melody and cacophony and worthy of multiple spins on the platter, debut effort and all”.
Now a 5-piece, 2023 sees the band returning stronger than ever with a new vocalist and addition of a second guitarist plus a forthcoming album Hope Is Heavy, set for release in July 2023 via Mongrel Records. New single Caligulater comes off the back of the albums immersive debut single Demon Behemoth which released in February this year.
Continuing the cynical theme established with Demon Behemoth, Caligulater derives its name from the infamous emperor Gaius, otherwise known as Caligula. He was the megalomaniacal third emperor of Rome, a man steeped in violent and sadistic excess. In short, not a cool guy. Guitarist and songwriter Keenan Kinnear delves into the message behind the song, “Caligulater explores my feelings concerning myself and my place in society. My own existential crisis and self-imposed vitriolic outlook on the world when at my worst. The “they” in the main hook, “they made us, betrayed us and enslaved us” can be applied to any subject. It could be Caligula himself concerning the citizens of Rome circa 37 AD or your parents, boss, society as a whole etc. It can even apply to yourself in the end.”
Doom, stoner, punk, psych, and classic rock are all common themes in their music. As huge fans of the rock greats (Zeppelin, Sabbath), stoner/desert rock behemoths (Kyuss, Sleep) as well as the tripped out psychedelic stylings of modern “psych” bands like Slift. Acid Magus take inspiration from all kinds of great music, spanning the entire gamut from 60s Hendrix and The Doors to Hawkwind and Scorpions at their heaviest, all this with maybe a little Alt Rock sensibility thrown in for good measure.
With an uncompromising, DIY approach to writing, Acid Magus promises to offer up only the best, most impassioned musical works. Long, slow, heavy, soft, it’s all there, and it comes from the heart…