FORBIDDEN DIMENSION: Mars Is Heaven: LP

Jan 21, 2022

I have to say it’s a great time to be alive if you’re a fan of Canadian horror-themed garage rock. Alberta-based label Wasted Wax is going about doing what everyone around these parts has been craving—giving the early catalog of legendary Calgary creep-rockers The Forbidden Dimension the glorious vinyl release it fully deserves. Satan’s work indeed. First up is the debut release Mars Is Heaven, which originally came out only on cassette in 1990. This was the “band” at its most primal—the mad scientist Jackson Phibes in the dungeon by himself with a guitar, fuzzbox, and drum machine. It’s raw, like watching forgotten episodes of The Outer Limits on an old TV and the rabbit ears aren’t quite tuning it in. It’s spooky as hell, and the next thing you know you’re naked in the woods, covered in blood wondering what happened. The stories being told sound like they’re coated in bubbling ooze, yet the rock comes through loud and clear. I was hooked the first time I heard it. The release features beautiful packaging featuring updated artwork by Phibes’ pencil-slinging alter ego TomB. My copy is the “bloodshot eyeball” vinyl. While I may prefer the full band iterations of future releases, I do love the protoplasmic beginnings as well. More reissues have been announced, so you know I’ll be haunting future issues with my absolute love of this band. –Ty Stranglehold (Wasted Wax, wastedwaxrecords.com)

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