Baklavaa “Spiral Cramp” Cover
Artwork by Lucas King

It’s not every day you hear an album and feel as if it’s tapped into something you always knew you had inside you but never wanted anyone else to know about. Baklavaa‘s “Spiral Cramp” does just that and then some, inducing psychotic breakdowns and panic attacks with delusional riffs and demented vocals. The sense of manic depressive tendencies is apparent throughout the album as each song shifts through bipolar tones of anger, psychosis, sorrow- even ecstatic happiness-while always laced with a underlying feeling that something just isn’t right.  As a listener, you become short of breath along with guitarist and vocalist Ted Ciafardini, and may find yourself sweating straight through your shirt.

In Ciafardini’s own words, “I don’t want to speak for anyone but myself on behalf of the albums content and meaning- but to me it’s about having a transformational experience with god/the unified field/whatever and the confusion that follows.  I also hope that it captures my view that everything – including this description of the albums content and meaning – is completely and totally absurd when you really think about it“.

From the start, first track “Holy Blood” plummets wildly through a circus of creeps, screams, and chaos. But somehow, by song’s end you feel happy you’re here, waiting and wanting more. Baklavaa’s explorative technique and mindless nerve in songwriting is apparent in tracks like “Salsa Shark” and “Loose Bird,” which are a feat of their own in musical stature and composition. Only a mad man could come up with a drum pattern as intricate yet explosive as drummer Flynn DiGuardia. The booming bass lines of Dominique Wilson slide and send shivers down your spine. The two forge a rhythm section unrivaled in Baltimore’s music scene. Throughout the duration of “Spiral Cramp,” the sound doesn’t settle, but Baklavaa‘s sense of tortured youth and weird feelings is ever present. And that’s what gets you- What in life is ever right? Nothing is black and white. It’s all weird and washy ain’t it? And, if it feels good.. DO IT! That’s what Baklavaa has done here. After three long years of writing, recording, and now release, they only have themselves to blame for it.

Spiral Cramp” will be Baklavaa’s first full-length album and vinyl release, as well as  Zoid Record‘s first full length 12″ LP release (001). Luke Spicknall, founder of Zoid Records, took over the second guitar hand in Baklavaa in November 2012.

From conception this album has been self made and self recorded and self funded.. With help from friends it’s finally come together” says Ciafardini. “You know, I just think Luke did the best job on it. And really, we owe it all to him. He made us what we are and we shit at his altar. He is the chosen one. And, that do-it-yourself mentality has really paid off in the long run.

Spiral Cramp” is a roller coaster ride from beginning to end. But once you ride, you realize there just isn’t anything like it out there and you know you’ll be back for more.

“Spiral Cramp” Vinyl Release show poster
Artwork by A-B Moore

Baklavaa‘s official record release will be Friday, June 28th 2013 at Myspace in Baltimore, MD with: Sexgender, Multicult, and Needle Gun. More details on the show here.









Baklavaa – “Salsa Shark” Music Video from The New Jedi Order on Vimeo.

Baklavaa on: Facebook / Bandcamp / Tumblr