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Art As Catharsis

Turtle Skull

by Turtle Skull

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Harry Harrison
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Harry Harrison Well I’ve been sitting on this album for quite some time purely because I really didn’t know what to write. All the punters have it have nailed it down one way or the other. I like Marcin’s best though….“True ACID” sums it up well. To me it’s like a modern, more cruisy and droney ‘Sergeant Pepper’ with some decent amps and the band members are on a better class of drug. Favorite track: Take It Or Leave It.
Deep Gloss
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Deep Gloss Bit late finding this, but my goodness is it good! Little bit of menace, heaps of psych, great vocals, overall great feel to it. Wish I could write proper reviews...just have a listen, it's brilliant! Favorite track: Eden.
Michael Henaghan
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Michael Henaghan You'd hope this Sydney based collective are locked away, busy working on a full-length, for this eponymous EP is fantastic. Starting with the darkened Psych of 'No News is Bed News', through the subliime Neu-like workout of 'Take It Or Leave it' and the searing, sun-bursting 'Eden'. As the last strains of the laid-back 'Empty Ships', a track that would not be out of place on the latest Wooden Shjips LP, fades out you can't help but want more. On this form, the full LP is gonna be a beaut. Favorite track: Take It Or Leave It.
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Art As Catharsis is proud to release the debut self-titled record from Turtle Skull – a warm, full toned psychedelic record with a range of influences equally as colourful as their music.

Taking inspiration from Black Mountain, Sleep, King Gizzard and more, Turtle Skull’s finished product gives fresh direction to the Australian psych scene. Rolling low riffs, patterned bass lines, groaning guitar and counter-cultural lyrics merge over an exchange of dirty and smooth tracks – the final product satiating those hungry for both heavy grooves and thoughtful song writing.

“It’s about layers and textures – closing your eyes and seeing how deep you can go, really getting in touch with each individual sound and movement,” explains guitarist/vocalist Dean McLeod on the band’s writing process. “You can say so much with just one note or sound if you focus on the texture of it, the way it warbles, vibrates and oscillates. Ultimately it’s about mind expansion through music – I want to facilitate a moving experience for the listener and the audience.”

Eden, the first single from the record, is unashamed in its worship of fuzz. Running out the gates with a meaty hook before sliding into smooth, vocal driven grooves, Eden shifts through a kaleidoscope of riffs and shimmering textures before reeling you back with a consistent, thumping hook.

The end of the record leaves listeners at the end of a journey through political ideologies and light-hearted joy set to the backdrop of lush, buzzing soundscapes. Their live show is equally as climatic: a wall of fuzzed out riffs cascading against a lysergic sky, while dreamy, psych-pop vocals float over the void.


released May 17, 2018

Recorded over 3 days on a farm on the south coast of NSW, Australia

Recorded, mixed and produced by Dan Frizza
Mastered by Michael Lynch

Songs written by Dean McLeod, Charlie Gradon, Rachel Pascall

Artwork by Davey Fenn:

Turtle Skull is Dean McLeod, Charlie Gradon, Julian Frese, Dan Frizza, Tobia Blefari

Special thanks to Rachel, Ally, Lachlan, Matt Toon, Maggie, Aedon, Ben, Lilly, Denya, Brad, Les, Roy, Mary Jane, Mopsy, Bruno & Murray

Turtle Skull acknowledges the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of this nation. We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we recorded this album as the Dharawal nation & Wodi Wodi people. We pay our respects to ancestors and Elders, past and present.



No I don't get my news from the TV
I won't buy what they sell
You're gonna get sick if you drink from a dirty well

Mass distraction, prevents reaction
Turns a want to a need
Weighed down, wrung out and faded
Is that how it should be?

Well that's life
Round here
That's life
Round here

There's only feel good truth in a slogan
Rolled and ready to smoke
No need for facts when you're stopping the boats

In a coma, high on soma
Buy a house and a car
Turn off, tune out and cash in
Man that's how you get far

Well choose life
My dear
That's life
Round here

No I don't put my faith in the system
I know it's set up to fail
Can't see what's real behind the corporate veil

Mass deception, prevents connection
Between the us's and them's
No news is bad news
Poison in the words that they sell


I’m not one to get to deep
But lately I’ve been losing sleep
There’s something on my mind

A pocket watch that needs a wind
I’m out of sync with the tide
A drifter on the outside looking in

Into a world that’s trapped inside
Margins and a bottom line
Lets decide which way to go

I’m at a fork in the road
One way yes the other no
A life that’s mine or pointless flow... to the end

Take it or leave it
I want it I need it...
I'm not sure

I used to see the lighter side
Took pleasure in the simple life
But now I find it harder to ignore

The things I hadn’t seen before
I’m knocking at the magic door
I’m hoping to explore a world beyond

I’m a drunken boat
Crewless and afloat
A sea of curios and oddities

A cosmic puppet free of strings
Give up on all the shiny things
A new beginning doing what I want... to the end

Take it or leave it
I want it I need it...
I’m not sure

Take it or leave it
I want it I need it...

Take it or leave it...



Come with me I’ll be your guide
I’ll show you how to get inside
One way in and no road sign
Be careful on your way

Wait for me when you arrive
No need to eat we’ll feed our minds
Bring yourself and open eyes
And I will see you there

On and on and on we drive
On highways under violet skies
Racing with the fading light
Until we reach the gate

Pools of burning centigrade
We let our naked bodies bathe
Feel our ego's start to fade
And know we'll be ok

Rest your head and let
Me take you to the edge
Of your mind

Going up and coming down
We flyyyy until we wake up
Or we melt into the ground

Seeing colours in the dark
And faces in the desert palms
Neon thoughts light up the path
They want to set you free

Stories of Geronimo
And rumours of the rolling stones
Certainty starts to erode
like cliffs that touch the sea

Give up what you think you know
Surrender to the lightning
Find contentment in the flowing waters of the source

As the night turns into day
And light washes the dream away
Grateful for our time to play
Upon the astral plane...

Rest your head and let
Me take you to the edge
Of your mind

Set intent relent
To hours that we’ll spend
On this ride

Going up and coming down
We flyyyy until we wake up!


Behind, behind all the noise
There lies, there lies a black void
I’ve realised
I’m getting old
And I’m getting tired, so tired of this role

I can feel it come and I can feel it go
Through my mind
Like the running water going to the hole
It's all a lie

I’ve tried, to lie in this mould
Put my, head down and stay whole
But thanks to time
I’m getting old
One day the void is gonna take its toll
No control

I can feel it come and I can feel it go through my mind
Like the running water going to the hole, it’s all a lie
Knowing gets you high and you can’t sleep at night, wondering why
Empty ships adrift beneath a starless sky, until we die.


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Turtle Skull Sydney, Australia

Merging the light, the organic, the ecstatic with the monolithic, the fuzzy, the droney, Turtle Skull have forged a reputation around their signature ‘flower doom’ sound, and aim to create an immersive and transformative experience.

Their soon to be released follow up is everything the first record is and more - heavier riffs, deeper emotion, and the intricacies of a fully developed concept.
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