Twenty-two years, eight albums, an unquantifiable number of nimble guitar leads and drum fills, and Philadelphia instrumental metal trio Stinking Lizaveta is going strong as ever. Comprised of Yanni Papadopoulos on lead guitar, Alexi Papadopoulos on bass and Cheshire Agusta on drums, the band releases its latest outing, Journey to the Underworld, this week via Translation Loss Records. Tonight, they headline Johnny Brenda’s to celebrate.
As always, Stinking Lizaveta is imposing and ominous, weaving occult imagery into song titles and album art. As players, they’re dynamic and exploratory, riffing and headbanging one moment while wandering spacious innerzones of sound the next. Their Key Studio Session kicked off with the expansive eight-minute title track “Journey to the Underworld,” a measured rhythm leading the way as Yanni unfurls guitar chords in a squealing sunburst, warming up his fretting fingers with leads that amble, then sprint, then come to a fever pitch of feedback and squalor, the guitar lifted upward, screams sent into its face and through the pickups, an unholy voice crying out from the fog.
As the set continues, we take in Stinking Liz’s range: the tubthumping rager “Witches and Pigs,” which you can watch a video of below; “Sharp Stick in the Eye,” with its chugging riffs running askew to a four-on-the-floor beat; and the untitled song that precedes it, built around an exhilarating lead lick.
Listen to the entire session below, and catch Stinking Lizaveta in person tonight when they headline JBs to celebrate the release of Journey to the Underworld; tickets and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar.
Stinking Lizaveta, The Key Studio Sessions