Cold Rush: Disclosing The Vicious Seeds

With an album imminent German industrial metalers Cold Rush have made a mightily firm case for great anticipation and impatience for the forthcoming release with their new maxi single Disclosing The Vicious Seeds. Varied, stirring, and infectious the two track single shows the returning band has evolved their sound into a harder and more addictive proposition which invites, entraps, and exhilarates the ear and beyond for a deep satisfaction.

Disclosing The Vicious Seeds is a fore taste for the new album AmoKKoma, the follow-up to debut The Illness of 2009. The years have seen Cold Rush sharing stages with the likes of Megadeth, Last Instance, Mono Inc., Debauchery, Equlibrium, and Suidakra across Germany and the band riling up Europe with a tour alongside Kreator, their sounds finding an easy fit to metal, rock, and industrial hearts. The two years since their first album has seen the sound of the Munich band as previously mentioned, expand into a more eagerly catchy and powerful beast, maybe inspired by the addition of new vocalist Matthias Kupka (Suidakra and Emergency Gate), who brings a fiercer and darker crunch to the vocals and energy. Their sound is grounded in the industrial bands from the nineties, addictive and challenging with a steely intent to provoke and melodically corrupt, the new single the first result.

Opening song Daily Crime (Second Edition) opens on sparkling synth melodies spotting the ear and an intrusive grind behind a sampled vocal. Intriguing from the off it soon breaks out into a wave of smothering density and metal forcefulness tempered with warm and compulsive melodies. The vocals of Kupka are harsh and intimidating backed up by sounds from guitarists K.L. and Wutzl that are incisive, and rhythms from bassist Ramirez and drummer Flo which steal away the breath with their dark command. The spreading electro synths sweep through and over every sense with the song overall a piece which carries an ominous atmospheric darkness.

Second song White Z is a fuller rock/metal track bringing a mix of the likes of Rammstein in league with Scum Of The Earth. The track stomps across the senses with a might and intensity that raises pulse rates and draws air punching fists. The bass of Ramirez growls and prowls the song wonderfully adding spite to an already formidable energy and attack from the guitars and the muscular vocals of Kupka.  The new aggressive yet contagious element to their sound has brought something new out of the band that is impressive, their craft at bringing their electro and melodic skills into a seamless meld with the harder intensity very rewarding for the ear.

Disclosing The Vicious Seeds is an excellent forerunner to the new full length release currently being completed by Cold Rush and if there is one complaint it is that this single has now made the wait for their album  even more impatient.

www.cold-rush.com

RingMaster 17/03/2012

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The Modern: Dream Nights E.P

Recently the audience to The Reputation Introduces Radio Show heard for the first time and with an eager reception a song from UK band The Modern called SamePeople. The track was an older song so as soon as the band completed their brand new EP Dream Nights we dived right in to its depths to check out the fresh slices of sound from the bands creative minds.

The quartet from Worcester formed in 2009 and soon found them with a loyal fan following from their exciting live shows. The following year saw the band release their debut album Where Did All The Good Times Go? to good acclaim. Recorded  by Gavin Monaghan (Ocean Colour Scene/The Twang/Editors) at his Black Country-based Magic Garden Studios, the release showed off the band sound and energy to good effect. Their music carries a Madchester sound base, the songs emerging with a definite Stone Roses feel and elements of Happy Mondays, the band being a big fan of Shaun Ryder, and Inspiral Carpets.

Dream Nights starts with the title track, a song almost in two parts. It gently lifts off with a smooth soulful touch, the guitars twisting around the ear from Connor McMinn as vocalist Luke Morris delivers the lyrical content in a way that gently works its way into the thoughts though it comes with a hollow slight echo type production that takes a little time to get used to. Notable is the vibrant bass play from Will Lawrence who leads the track on with firm support from drummer Sam Ryan. The track exudes bursts of eager excitement at certain points but stays restrained until mid way when it thrusts forward with a delicious intense electrified guitar crescendo which dominates to great effect.

Previous download single Featherstone comes next, an initial gentle track which increases into a strong canter as it progresses. It has an 80s feel again but reminds more of bands like an electrified Farmers Boys or The Bluebells. The song swings gently across the senses  and still with this slightly hollow production comes over as an impressive pop song. With two tracks down the production does become a notable thing about the EP, and  though it may just be down to preference this echo like handling especially on the vocals is slightly distracting and becomes even more so as the EP proceeds, a shame as the songs despite this show good quality.

The EP’s best track is I Need You, a gem and crying out to be a single. The guitars play enthusiastically with a jangly scuzzy sound as Morris once more swarms over the track with good mellow but incisive vocals. The band do not try at all to hide their influences using these to great effect though maybe it is fair to say the band have yet to find a distinctive sound that makes people think of them before those artists the songs remind of.

Dream Nights is a fine release completed by more strong songs like Quick On The Draw with its easily digestible grace, the stoked energy of Start The Day, and the bluesy Stuck on Friday. Musically teach member of the band is accomplished bringing elements that grab attention whilst lyrically the band without becoming over complicated, avoid the obvious. It has to be said that the production does firmly hinders the overall effect of the EP especially regarding the vocals where they often feel unattached to the music, which is a shame as all elements are there to show The Modern is a fine band with good ideas destined to become even better. The EP without question though is definitely worth checking out for its satisfying sounds and a fusion of nostalgia and modern attitude.

https://www.facebook.com/themodernuk

RingMaster 11/01/2011

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The Escape: Chapters EP

The obvious thing about Cheshire band The Escape upon hearing their latest EP Chapters is how accomplished they are as musicians with a sure depth to their songwriting. The four track release is a diverse and enterprising collection of songs that reveals different aspects to the band sound and their ability to evolve each approach in to a deeply satisfying result.

Formed in 2010 The Escape is made up of five members who came together via different roads and carrying varied influences and experiences, the quintet uniting in the purpose of writing songs that are not only very good but distinct on every level . The Chapters EP is the strong proof that they have accomplished their aim and are moving forward towards even greater things.

The EP is a follow up to their self titled debut which initially made the first strong mark on a swelling amount of attentive ears. This concentration of fans rapidly increased as the band shared stages with the likes of, Pegasus Bridge, Turin Breaks, The Bromheads, and Young Rebel Set,  often pushing the headliners to their limit, plus being on the BBC Introducing bill did not exactly do them harm. Though the debut was impressive it is Chapters that sees The Escape moving things up a level with songs that are as emotionally engaging and touching as they are striking. With radio play accompanying the release The Escape are about to take what one imagines will be further and many steps upwards, these fine songs bringing an increased surge in popularity.

The four songs that make up Chapters are all inviting and charismatic but it is Self Self Self that especially stands tall and proud over the others. With a truly infectious chorus that reminds of the heady days when The Wonder Stuff wrote hypnotic tunes, the song sparkle enchantingly from the impulsive and beckoning guitars and a sexy bass sound from Ben Kaye with more wanton tendencies than a teenager in an Anne Summers store. The song is stunning and exposes a band with firm confidence in their sound and loaded with skilled creativity.

The remaining songs on the EP are just as impressive. The emotive James And The Giant Mood is wonderfully expressive and seductive whilst the slower paced but no less touching song Little Yellow Flower wonderfully and caressingly spreads its delightful melodies and almost pained flowing sound around the ear. The final song Needing Change shows another element to the band. Al Lyes crashing guitars and the songs spiked attitude driven by the heartfelt vocals from Matthew Percival delivers a punk edge and impassioned urgency without ever unleashing enough to disturb the harmonics and melodic nature of the track. Another well crafted song finishing a very gratifying EP

The band, with the controlled and sure rhythms of Jake Forrester have taken their skills and indie pop songs to a new level with Chapters. The songs are uncomplicated without falling into the ease of laying simple and cheap candy lures into their music. Instead they write songs that are rounded, well thought out and then realised, music that does have an instant appeal but also has substance and soul, that is why The Escape will move on to greater things.

http://www.the-official-escape.co.uk

RingMaster 22/10/2011

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Varnish: Each To Each

here has been a ceaseless flow of bands harking back to and using revitalised flavours from the post-punk bands of the 80s for a while now. Many have impressively reinterpreted those obvious influences whilst others are open in their borrowing but a few have created an instinctive sound that would see them as a major force back then and a thrilling proposition now. One such group is Seattle band Varnish, a group that mesmerises and inflames the senses of most who come across their discordant jangly charms and striking cutting melodies.

Formed in 2007 by vocalist and lyricist Amber Bird and guitarist Jason Cope the band has collected many adoring hearts whilst winning over their hometown and in past months by flexing their darkly angelic wings further afield through channels such as the Reputation Introduces Radio Show. Varnish is completed by drummer aNdi pUzL (though the recorded tracks on the EP feature Ben Crosby) and bassist Johnny Straube whose own excellent band Post Adolescence where he caresses the ear as guitarist and vocalist, is also a leading and strongly acclaimed band in Seattles vibrant musical scene. The quartet have united to deliver a sound that is refreshing and equally nostalgic and a debut EP Each To Each, that lights up the heart with clean but dirty punk sounds and intense but undemanding energy.

In their bio the bands says their music consists of “Songs about the hopes we cling to and the regrets that cling to us. Rooted in rain-soaked cities and dry mouths, Varnish want to stand by you when the lights go out and occasionally point out the stars”.  Those two sentences sum up the music and the lyrics perfectly and gives you a clear idea of the poetic but incisive writing of Bird. The songs bring out the darker sides of life and relationships, those showed corners all have or will experience at some point but there is always a spark to turn things into a hopeful positive, if even a mere glimpse of light. Lyrically and musically there is a perfect union, the words as open and dark as the sounds and the music as lively and refreshing as the lyrics.

Each To Each in a way comes in two parts, the eight track release made up of five studio recordings and three live tracks. Recorded at the world famous London Bridge studios and produced and mixed by Mark Clem (Blanco y Negro, Post Adolescence) at his own Soul Kitchen studio the five recordings are impressive to say the least. Each song is a mini classic using upright riffs and minimalistic tones that fluctuate between urgent directness and more expansive eager crescendos. Believe It opens up the release with a probing pulsating bassline and chatty guitar riffs that taunt and tease openly. The songs sounds like a hybrid of the militant punk of Au Pairs and the sparse simplicity of Young Marble Giants, two iconic post-punk UK bands from the 80s.

Not Complaining is almost predatory in its mid paced subdued beat from Crosby and Straube, the rhythm seemingly looking and waiting for the moment to pounce. Again there are unavoidable comparisons to bands like Au Pairs and the offbeat frivolity of Martha And The Muffins but all in an extremely positive and deeply enjoyable way. Bird delivers the words with confidence and a heartfelt energy showing she is living the song as she performs not just singing some words. This is especially apparent in Bruise Me where she almost spits out the words with a keenest verging on malice and bitter venom. Musically too the track has a belligerence and spite from the grumbling menacing bassline and cutting strokes of a fuzzed up guitar.

The remaining two studio tracks carry on the impressive quality and sound. Slipping comes with a Joy Division toned sound that opens into a jangling melodic warmth with Cope meandering wonderfully behind Birds spoken parts. It is the most varied of all the tracks though not as instantly addictive but that makes it a gem of a different colour. Tied To My Chair is an attitude soaked punk song with a glorious FU bassline and dirty bleeding guitars. The song has a feel of X-Ray Spex about it especially in Birds again spiteful vocal display.

The three live tracks featuring aNdi pUzL on drums are admittedly not of the best production quality but more than show a band that is worth checking out live and songs that one is eager to hear at close quarter or from the studio. Insignificant Other and Wanna are again true punk songs with the latter showing Bird giving a Siousxie Sioux like performance.

Each To Each is an outstanding release that for the listeners of Reputation Introduces is an almost greatest hits type EP, with a few of the songs being aired eagerly on the live radio shows. If there is one complaint it is that Varnish have unleashed an EP so addictive one cannot get it off the playlist long enough to review anything else.

Get Each To Each @http://varnish.bandcamp.com/

http://www.varnishcentral.com/

RingMaster 12/12/2011

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