Idol of Fear – All Sights Affixed, Ablaze

 Photo -Jamie Morton

Photo -Jamie Morton

Idol of Fear’s sound is like the black shadow or light limited passage way which manages to be simultaneously inviting and threatening whilst offering the possibility of safety or the darkest outcome. Hailing from the Barrie/Toronto area of Canada, the band creates an imposing and immersive soundscape of extreme metal which comes with a blackened heart and experimentally fuelled provocation. It is a fiercely challenging and rewarding confrontation as evidenced by the band’s debut album All Sights Affixed, Ablaze, eight individual torments which align for one grievous and pestilential seduction of ears and imagination.

Formed in 2011 with a name inspired by the quote from Ingmar Bergman’s 1957 movie Det Sjunde Inseglet (The Seventh Seal), “We must make an idol of our fear and that idol we shall call God”, Idol of Fear made an imposing statement with their 2013 EP Scavenger. It awoke attention but you suspect nothing to that which All Sights Affixed, Ablaze has the potential to ignite. Recorded across 11 months of “fiery personal turbulence and development, musically and otherwise”, the Tore Stjerna (Watain, Corpus Christi) mastered and Jeff Wardell mixed album is a unsettling maelstrom of fierce flavours and expressive invention, merging everything from black and death metal to progressive, occult, and avant-garde experimentation. It is not always an easy listen, and often a test of stamina and the senses, but always All Sights Affixed, Ablaze is a gripping and epic fall into the depths of the band’s raw imagination and sonic voracity.

Opener Vanquish instantly smothers ears in an intriguing and imposing web of enterprise and sound, the guitars of Dave Bach and Austin Myers an immediate blaze of caustic provocation with melodic seducing. This is soon joined by the raw vocal rage of Myers and the rhythmic intimidation unleashed by drummer Doug Belcourt and bassist Johnny. The song instantly allows no escape from its oppressive yet magnetic tenacity, grooves and melodies searing the senses as rhythms bruise and vocals scar. As eventually discovered on all tracks, there is also a fascinating drama to the lyrical and sonic side of the track, as well as a skilled investigation of distinct flavours amidst constant twists. The song also proves that this is an album which needs time to explore, often its real and undoubted treasures lying well beyond its surface storm and violation.

The following Morningstar makes a more merciful entrance but is soon immersing ears in a persistently shifting and ravenous tapestry of corrosive riffery and radiant sonic endeavour. Swiftly cover1an even greater variety of spices are at work on the imagination alongside an inventiveness which manages to assault, stalk, and seduce with sublime efficiency and temptation, the track’s scenic passage of atmospheric resonance and melodic caressing within a rhythmic enslavement quite delicious. Its fluid cold causticity and enthralling beauty makes way for the darker and harsher Circle of Vortices, a scathing and consuming piece of music inflamed by the malevolent tones of Myers. Again though there is radiance to its persuasion and invention, its soundscape harsh but haunting, cold rather than bitter. The track also slips into bewitching melodic scenery, its calm stroking of the senses a hopeful snatch of light before the song again savages emotions.

The album’s title track is a lively jungle of rhythms and fascinating inventiveness within smog of crushing intensity and smothering dark emotion. There is nevertheless a flirtatious element to the song and an unmissable swing which makes it almost joyful and mischievous, certainly in comparison to previous tracks, whilst the following It Demands brings its own addictive predation to the expansive dark of the album. It also prowls with an enticing lure, guitars scything and taunting across a heavy bassline and provocative beats with venomous yet invitational potency. The bordering on picturesque craft and colours sculpted by Bach and Myers transfix throughout but as mentioned time given reveals the full strength and depth of their and the whole band’s ingenuity.

This period of the album ignites the passions most fervently, the next up It Militates with its hunting riffery, anthemic rhythms, and captivating sonic intrusiveness adding another peak to the increasingly impressing album. The song is a real predator, one luring with sinister beauty and ravishing with coarse hunger. Its triumph is followed by the even more hellacious body and soul of It Tyrannizes, a tsunami of erosive intensity and creative barbarity with engrossing melodic tendrils and sonic rapacity across the tempestuous consumption. These are enticing hues harkening the longer calm and elegant reflection which emerge, though all is eventually swallowed by a new twist in the furnace of the narrative’s animosity.

The closing Carrion provides a blackened exploration of raw ambiences and dark forces, its crawling serpentine temptation and sonic resonance a colluding suffocation and primal seduction. It is an absorbing instrumental bringing the fascinating trespass of senses and emotions to an evocative and climactic close.

All Sights Affixed, Ablaze is a testing and demanding proposition but one with lingering and intensive rewards for body and mind. It is an album which no one should judge or rest upon over just one or two listens, but an incitement from Idol of Fear which warrants and deserves numerous dives into its unrelenting sufferance for the most compelling and unique experience.

The self-released All Sights Affixed, Ablaze is available from November 18th via http://idoloffear.bandcamp.com/album/all-sights-affixed-ablaze

http://www.idoloffear.com/

RingMaster 18/11/2014

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Duncan Reid and The Big Heads – The Difficult Second Album

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If it was as problematic as its title might allude to, The Difficult Second Album from Duncan Reid and The Big Heads has no intentions of showing it within its fluid and mischievous power pop revelry. The trickiness of following an impressing debut is one of those issues which is arguably more imagined and supposed than generally realised, and certainly there is no hint of anything but an equally thrilling and potent encounter from Reid for his second solo offering. Spawned from the same punk and pop rock devilry which marked its predecessor and its creator’s career, The Difficult Second Album is a contagious romp which explores more power pop essences this time around but still provides an instinctive and inescapable incitement of hook laden rock ‘n’ roll.

Reid’s impact and inspiration on punk rock came as bassist/vocalist of melodic punks The Boys, an outfit which Joey Ramone declared his favourite band in the eighties, and indeed that decade saw Reid alongside fellow Boys member Casino Steel provide backing vocals for the live version of The Ramones hit, Baby I Love You. Alongside band founders Matt Dangerfield and Steel, as well as Honest John Plain and Jack Black, Reid and The Boys released four albums and a host of singles before splitting in 1981.Eighteen years later the band reformed for a couple of shows in Tokyo, which in turn eventually led to a full comeback and tours across varied areas of the world. Leaving the band in 2011, Reid set about recording his debut solo album Little Big Head which gripped attention and appetites upon its release in 2012. Now he returns with its successor and another excursion into majestic power and punk pop.

With multi-instrumentalist Alexander Gold, guitarist Sophie Lynch, and drummer Ciara Lavers alongside him, Reid and the band swiftly light up ears and appetite with opener Another City. Within a breath melodies are teasing and captivating whilst crisp beats and a dark bass seducing are adding their potent coaxing to the songs immediately catchy invitation. It is not long before the tones of Reid bring their distinctive hues, his voice somewhere between Ste McCabe, Pete Shelly, and Ian Broudie, and fuelling the track with even greater temptation. With suggestive melodies dancing on the senses, the song is a lively croon setting the release off in fine and magnetic style.

The strong start is instantly surpassed by the outstanding Baby Doll, its entrance a flight of Devo-esque keys bred persuasion which has the imagination in the palms of their colourful hands. duncan_album_2Nestling into a minimalistic stroll with a tangy bassline escorting Reid’s compelling narrative, the song lyrically as intriguing and enthralling as the sounds it casts, it is in no time a devilish treat. With an even pace even through its mini crescendos, the track persistently inflames and ignites ears with spicy enterprise and Pixies like imagination across its singular rhythmic direction. The song is an early pinnacle for the album backed strongly by C’est La Vie, a juicy pop infused blaze of bracing riffs and glowing harmonies. Admittedly at its strongest in the verses rather than the hazy choruses, the track is a magnet for the passions and vocal participation, raising an eager smile at every turn of its mischief.

Both End of the World and Joe keep things bubbling vivaciously, the first of the two a weave of incendiary rhythms and flavoursome chords which at times are early Undertones like and in others more like The Briefs, whilst the second is a riveting drama of Beatle-esque melodrama and melodic rock colouring with a gorgeous breeze of melancholic strings matched by keys. Though neither can quite match those before them, each adds a rich new shade to the character of the album and a treat for ears to devour before Just As Good As I Used To Be unveils its quaint balladry. It is a slow embrace and admittedly persuasion until it suddenly erupts into a fevered pop punk stomp which in turn ignites the already appealing vocal lures with extra spice and energy. From its appealing but underwhelming start the track turns into the life of the party and feeds the greedy appetite now in place for the album with its exciting The Freshies like revelry.

Little Fingers and Toes steps up next and straight away is flinging spicy riffs and hooks which spark in the imagination with Rezillos like radiance. It should be stated that for all the references and reminders moments in songs inspire they more often than not are fleeting or simple essences which only spice up the unique propositions. The song itself has a curled lip to its presence, a belligerence which is all punk rock and lingering attitude, even as contagious hooks and vocal harmonies steal attention. As across the album, the excellent encounter is unfussy and to the point but still a masterful web of textures and sounds dragging feet and emotions into its persuasion with sublime ease.

The initially folk lilted Long Long Gone is next and strides with a blues flame to its accomplished design and air before making way for Not The Kind of Guy Girls Hug, another song with an open whisper of Lennon and McCartney to its charm. Adding another enjoyable twist to the album, the song still lacks the spark of its predecessors though admittedly that is more personal taste driven than any shortcoming in its skilled persuasion, though it is soon forgotten as One Night in Rio uncages its rock ‘n’ roll rampage. An out and out punk stomp with a blues rock underbelly, the track is the kind of song Reid has become renowned for which is hungry punk rock at its melodic and insatiable best, this track offering a great Ramones meets Eddie and the Hot Rods tasting.

The thrilling success of the song is instantly emulated by Wasting Time, this showing distinct and sultry personality with its first flame of blues and surf rock enriched glaze of guitar. It is a tempting which never leaves the rigorous lure of the song, only lays in wait during moments of predatory riffing for the chance to again soak subsequent melodies and harmonies. A radiant gem of a suasion for body and emotions, the song leaves for closer When We were Young to bring the infectious shindig to a close. Toying with synth rock and indie pop within its alluring body, the track is a tenaciously satisfying end to a release which makes you groan in disappointment once its last note is cast.

The Difficult Second Album hits the sweet spot time and time again across its nostalgia and modern infused body, and even when it misses the target for individual tastes, it still leaves a feverish and lingering wake which only leads to a hunger for more.

The Difficult Second Album is available now via LBH Records @ http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00MPNSP9I/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00MPNSP9I&linkCode=as2&tag=uberoc-21&linkId=N5K5ZLSPALFB6SUJ

http://web.little-big-head.de/

RingMaster 17/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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RxGF – Any Other Way

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Not exactly an album of two halves but one with a certain shift in its manner well into its body, Any Other Way from US electronic explorers RxGF, is an exhilarating and transfixing adventure for ears and imagination. Consisting of thirteen tracks which bind the listener in flirtatious and provocative dark wave intrigue, the album is a creative emprise of rhythmic and electronic ingenuity honed into individual provocations which ignite thoughts and emotions as forcibly as they seduce ears. The third album from the band and the first with vocalist Angeline Schaaf, Any Other Way is one of those glorious inventive blazes you unknowingly hanker all year for.

The Seattle bred RxGF is the brainchild of and driven by multi-instrumentalist John Morgan Reilly who linked up in 2005 with producer Jonathan Plum who had worked with one of Reilly’s previous bands, to experiment on fresh songs and sounds. Under the name Radioactive X Girlfriend, this revamped in reflection of the band’s new twist of sound for the new album, the pair uncaged the albums, The Art of Splitting in 2011 and the following year All Blade No Handle. Enlisting contributions from the likes of Daniel Bedingfield, Dave Rosser (Twilight Singers, Afghan Whigs), Matthew Burgess, and Davey Brozowski (Cathaters), the acclaimed releases explored guitar-heavy indie rock and electro-folk respectively, each offering a dramatic departure in sound to the other, a diverse shift which is again emulated by Any Other Way.

The new album thrusts the listener into a dark wave terrain bulging with rhythmic incitement and electronic tenacity. Equally there are thick essences of techno, trip hop, and industrial trespasses which infuse and colour the shadows with greater experimentation and expression. It all makes for a wonderfully imposing and unpredictable proposition, one given even greater drama and imaginative espionage by the gorgeous sultry tones of Schaaf. There is a futuristic bordering on dystopian edge to many songs and with the broody noir lit beauty and tonal majesty of her voice, as instantly evidenced on the first two songs, it makes for dark times presented with compelling seduction.

The album’s title track opens up the theatre of creative operations, the encounter an immediate wall of sonic and electro baiting lit by the voice of Schaaf. It is not long before punchy and gripping rhythms are knocking on the door of the passions, their insatiable baiting potent within the expanding warmth and melodic expression of the synths. As lively and electronically radiant as the track is there is an intimidating shadow to its presence, a dark breath which also lies on the syllables flowing from the throat of Schaaf, the lady from track one revealing the depth and rich expression of her tones. It is a striking flame to start things off but soon surpassed by the brilliant How To Make It. With the opening intimidating rumble of rhythms and subsequent designs which emerge, the band shares a comparable skill and imagination to The Creatures, Schaaf herself finding that gothic elegance and exploration which makes Siouxsie Sioux so distinct and revered. The track from its hypnotic start continues to prowl the dark corners of its depths and the senses, its honest appraisal of music a defiance to the doom laded climate presented.

From one pinnacle another is soon caressing ears, the melodic guitar crafted entrance of We Will Not Be Denied the gateway into fiery and caustic scenery. Again Siouxsie comes to mind butRxGF - Any Other Way cover with more Banshees bred essences merging with the lighter melodic revelry of a Morningwood this time though the song is soon establishing its own identity and unique persuasion as it ebbs and flows in voracious enterprise, a trait raging in all songs as shown by the funkier electro dance of Flesh And Bone. Breathtakingly vivacious in energy and bubbling sounds, the track is a smouldering riot which almost explodes when it breaks from the dance floor for a punkish challenge led by the vocal challenge of Reilly. It soon returns into its hot summer of festivity though, leaving feet and emotions exhausted.

Antidote looks back into the shadows next, from its first second the song soaked in a menacing sizzle of sound amidst sinister colouring. This is tempered by the increasingly impressive vocal hues of Schaaf and again eagerly simmering melodies as another dark tale for the imagination is cast before the outstanding Tombstone Soirée takes over. A rhythmic and vocal swagger lurks from the first beat and mischievous syllable cast, fiery electronics again the lead protagonist before Schaaf unveils a compelling temptress posing as her voice. She flirts and seduces with every dramatic note, matched along the way by the maelstrom of adventure around her where sounds are as salaciously predatory as they are diversely magnetic. The track is an inescapable tempting providing another major peak which is matched by the ridiculously tantalising Never Felt So Good. As celestial as it is darkly beckoning, song and climate is another which intrigues and hints without revealing its full intent, dark and light colluding for a delicious mystery for thoughts and ears to immerse in.

It is at this point where the album seems to make another shift of direction, The Dying Grace Of Machines diving into a heavy industrial landscape with Reilly taking lead vocals where every word and tone expelled seems to have an axe to grind. It is an unexpected twist but one which soon grips with compelling weight and drama, its EBM lures pungent suggestiveness to match the potency of the weave of samples and creative enterprise fuelling the track. The following provocation of The Hit is spawned from the same mix, its dark but less threatening body equally enthralling and unexpected and warmly welcomed before making way for the False Flag Mix of Things That Go Bang, the fall of liberty and the beckoning of 1984 in one unrelenting and mouth-watering slab of electro/industrial predation. As the two before it, the track is exceptional but whether they fit with the previous fiery romance of the earlier songs is a still running mental debate. The following ears and thoughts stalking of Kontrollier Die Kontrollierenden is another which slips into that uncertainly, though the song with a great Bowie-esque lilt to Reilly’s vocals certainly continues the immense pleasure gained from the album.

The album closes with firstly Flow, an electro shuffle which delights and has feet subservient but lacks the spark of other songs and lastly the Verax Mix of Belladonna Dream which sees Schaaf returning to seduce the senses. The song is a delicious croon to leave a lingering kiss on ears and emotions and bring Any Other Way to a mystique coated and bewitching end.

     Any Other Way is an engrossing and virulently thrilling encounter which teases, seduces, and challenges throughout for all the right reasons. It rivals all other electronic releases this year for the right to be called the best whilst RxGF shows again their extraordinary ability to explore new realms with every release.

Any Other Way is available now @ https://rxgf.bandcamp.com/album/any-other-way

http://www.rxgf.co.uk/

RingMaster 16/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Hombre Malo – Persistent Murmur of Words of Wrath

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Pic: catty stone

 

Full of uncompromising fury and unbridled belligerence, Persistent Murmur of Words of Wrath the new album from Norwegian band Hombre Malo, is an incendiary device to ignite the imagination and passions. Its explosive nature and severe hostility is not for the faint hearted but sandwiched between opening and closing tracks which made potent and sizeable impressions there lays a cauldron of blistering enterprise and virulent hostility to take the breath away. Creating a tempestuous fusion of hardcore and noise rock with stoner and sludge metal, Hombre Malo has unleashed a beast of an album which is sure to make a relatively unknown band a talking point in a broader expanse of mouths.

Hailing from Oslo, Hombre Malo was formed in 2008 by ex-members of Sons of Saturn and Ictus and features current members of MOE and Okkultokrati. The quartet since starting has splits with bands like Jack and the Bearded Fishermen, Desert Icons, and Sofy Major under their belt as well as their 2009 debut album The Ecstasy Of Devastation. All have bred acclaim and eager attention though it is easy to feel that Persistent Murmur of Words of Wrath will be making the strongest impression for the band so far. Recorded with Ruben Willem and mastered by Brad Boatright (High On Fire, Ringworm, Nails), the band’s second album is a provocation from a band which you just feel relishes the turbulence they are going to create in the ears, thoughts, and emotions of their listeners.

Opener L’Etranger instantly casts stoner-esque grooves around ears as the album begins its conquest, their spicy coaxing matched by punchy beats designed again to grab attention. It is an inflammatory start for the imagination which loses a little of its potency when relaxing into a heavy and intensive stroll, though that small relinquishing of intrigue is compensated by the caustic tones of The Muerto, his throat spilling venom and spite with every forced syllable. With rises of rhythmic endeavour and the still virulently enticing grooves, the track has a firm hold as it continues to merge hardcore and punk with its sludgy tsunami of noise.

As mentioned earlier it is a strong start flooded with potential, as the band, but not able to inflames senses and passions as its successors begin to do from hereon in, starting with Crosses And hombre_maloMarching Feet. Striding from the news sample bulging link connecting the first two tracks, the song bawls and then brawls with ears as a crescendo of agitated beats and riffs fling themselves at the senses, all guided by again corrosive vocal squalls. Like a furnace sculpted by Melvins, Kunz, and Unsane, the track is all out assault of sonic voracity and creative mayhem honed into a deranged and addictive maelstrom.

Its success though is just a taster for the album’s pinnacle, the sensational Golden Calf. Again the song evolves from its predecessor, a great tendency of the release, and is soon crawling over the psyche with its corruptive rhythms and sonic unpredictability. Just as swiftly as the violent temptation takes hold, a swagger comes to grooves and beats, a swinging lure complimenting the equally infectious eruptions of bruising mass vocals. The further into its body it takes ears the more gripping the blaze of punk rock bred antagonism and predation aligned to psych rock ingenuity. Like a mix of Poison Idea and fellow Oslo band Shevils, the track is a vicious contagion which with a cleaner vocal delivery and unrelenting splinters of sonic taunting and teasing, simply ignites ears.

A darker sludge spawned turn to the album comes next through Vladislav, a track inspired by the homophobic murder of 23-year-old Russian Vladislav Tornovoi. The song prowls the senses from the start, riffs and grooves weighty and predacious intimidation stalking the listener. It is a constant pressure and oppressive enticing offered by the seven minute track, from its first breath to last a senses smothering provocation equipped with a carnivorous bass tone and raw vocal expression to match similar toxicity cast by the guitars. It too finds a catchy character within itself so that by its end it is stomping with a virulent suasion before making way for the punkish roar of Reaching The Shore. With the sonic voracity of a Coilguns to its hardcore truculence, the song scowls and boils with spiteful enterprise and abrasing intensity before it too has to part for its outstanding successor.

Elena, from a melancholic and abrasive melodic start which is portentous and seductive simultaneously, detonates a ravenous and sonically disorientating expulsion which soon settles into a no less uncompromising but more ordered creative shuffle. It is another song where it explores a contagiousness to grip feet and imagination whilst gnawing upon and spilling toxicity over senses and emotions. It is a glorious and hellacious ravishment which reveals even more of the incredible potential and already accomplished devilry in the band’s songwriting and sound.

The album finishes on the epic Deathbed Conversation, a track which flies from the traps with thrilling caustic ferocity. It is an engrossing storm, though when it slips into a provocative and darkly emotive exploration of its central character’s narrative amidst a haunting ambience and ethereal melodies, it lacks the inescapable grip of its predecessors if not the intriguing and impressing invention. Nevertheless it is a fine and potent end to an excellent incitement, a release suggesting that there is still much more to come from the depths of Hombre Malo, whilst establishing the band as one tremendous onslaught right now.

Persistent Murmur Of Words Of Wrath is available now via Disiplin Media @ https://disiplinmedia.bandcamp.com/album/persistent-murmur-of-words-and-wrath

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RingMaster 14/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Phal:Angst – Black Country

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A raw erosion of senses and psyche, Black Country the new album from Austrian noise sculptors Phal:Angst is a vociferously compelling provocation built upon soundscapes which suggest that the apocalypse is already upon us. Consisting of five intrusive and fierce sonic explorations themed by oppressive manipulation and bigotry, the release is a demanding and uncomfortable proposition to listen to but a welcomingly incendiary confrontation for imagination and emotions to embrace. Forging a caustic industrial, post rock and doom clad fusion of noise, the release is a haunting immersion into ravenous sounds and stark atmospheres from a provocateur bred from the same corrosive intent as a Swans or Nurse With Wound.

Phal:Angst emerged in 2006 as collaboration between the projects Phal and Projekt Angst. The years since then has seen two well-received albums, a soundtrack, and hosts of successful shows unleashed, all adding up to ensure there was certain anticipation for their third album Black Country. Recorded with Alexandr Vatagin and mastered by Patrick Pulsinger, the album is an invasive and riveting consumption which draws on thick essences of EBM and gothic rock alongside those elements of sound mentioned. It makes for an unpredictable and often voraciously abrasive encounter but one which leaves thoughts and emotions aflame and contemplating the incitement unleashed.

Hardwire is the first examination of the senses, a fifteen minute portrait of a world in turmoil and emotionally twisted. From a glorious opening female vocal caress soon wrapped in similarly elegant keys, the track slips into a heavy industrial climate. Beats and electronic designs aligned to war inspired samples emerge within the still warm melodic embrace of the song, the encroaching portentous invasion of the beauty slow and unrelenting as guitars begin their rawer sonic narrative. The track continues to smoulder between melodic grace and caustic hostility whilst melancholic breezes wash the climate of the song and the band’s vocals upon their subsequent appearance. It is a gripping track, a corruption of sound which smothers the beauty within itself in order to provoke and spark ears and thoughts.

The album’s title track is next where again a warm and gentle entrance is made. This time electronic seduction coaxes the senses though around them sonic shadows are swiftly brewing up their intent and menace. They are held at bay though as a funereal rhythmic strides court the radiant and haunted shimmer of synths and guitar. Monotone fuelled vocals add their colour to the emerging song next, though again it is a slow expansion prowled by other continually darkening tones. The repetitious nature within this and all tracks is an inescapable seducing which only adds to the persuasion if not always the accessibility of the song’s temptation. This and its successor The Old Has To Die and the New Must Not Be Born reminds of Young Gods across their maudlin soaked landscapes, the album’s third song especially sparking thoughts of the Swiss band as opening hoarse vocals and intimidating riffs sets the tone and character of the blackened suffocation of the senses to come. Again that repetitive essence and the return of those breath-taking female soaring vocals provide a rich temper to the bestial heart of the track.

It is an enthralling and bewitchingly unpredictable trespass of the emotions providing the album with its pinnacle though that is almost matched by the warped sonic flirtation of Black Milk of Morning. A track which takes its time worming under the skin, despite persistently offering slim and potent melodies across chilled rhythmic scenery soaked in abrasing sonic ambience, it almost sneaks up on the passions especially with the persistence of unpolished reiterative vocals which imprint their presence and pressure within the climactic sonic smog. There is a beauty to the open and merciless aural causticity of the song which will certainly not be for all but as the album, will provide a remarkably rewarding experience for many more.

Black Country closes with the industrial drama and dystopian presence of Theta, a track which feels like an infestation bred from the union of Kraftwerk, Einstürzende Neubauten, and Neurosis. It crawls across the senses, leaving doom bred bait in its wake whilst igniting the imagination with its creative smothering and fiery tenacity. The song is a fine end to a great album, one which at times you wonder what specifically you are enjoying about it but always by the end of its persuasion only want more.

Black Country is available digitally, on double vinyl and CD via Bloodshed 666 Records @ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/black-country-revisited/id932871714

The album is followed on Nov 28th by digital remix album Black Country Revisited featuring remixes by: Tronstoner/NSA, Swallow Red Rain, Chra, David Pfister, Electric Indigo, Rokko Anal, and Adaevarath/Bastard Sun.

http://www.facebook.com/phalangst

RingMaster 14/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Johnny Wore Black – Walking Underwater Pt 2

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Anticipation for the second part of his absorbing album has been as excited as it has been impatient, but Johnny Wore Black has rewarded the wait with another proposition which stops you in your tracks and immerses ears and imagination in an evocative embrace. The hunger for Walking Underwater Pt 2 comes from the strikingly impressive Part 1, an emotional canvas drenched in poetic melodies and fiery textures. Its release came in March of this year but such the appetite it bred the months between seemed like years. Its successor is here now, released on November 26th, and with even closer intimacy and impassioned imagination re-confirms the band as one of the UK’s premier melodic rock provocateurs.

Johnny Wore Black is the brainchild of London based songwriter/producer and stuntman (Les Miserables, The Dark Knight Rises, Fast and Furious 6, Fury ) who prefers to just be known as Jay. As renowned for his collaborations as well as his own work, Jay released a host of attention grabbing and riveting singles as the band before the first part of this debut album. Many of the songs were bred from a gripping collaboration with Megadeth bassist David Ellefson, and as on Part 1, the pair has linked up again on Walking Underwater Pt 2 with Ellefson co-writing a trio of tracks for it and playing bass across the bulk of the release. The band line-up is completed by drummer Simon Hutchby alongside guitarists Pete Mathers and James Coppolaro, the latter mixing much of the album with other tracks mixed by Grammy Award winning producer David Bottrill. Produced by Jay, the release takes little time in re-igniting the pleasure and emotions which were stoked by its predecessor, leading them into rich emotion fuelled reflections and sonically coloured atmospheres.

Opener Firefly sets things in motion and from the first electro influenced moment has the imagination engaged and then fired up as rich hooks and rugged riffs embrace ears. There is an immediate infectiousness which transfers to the potent vocals of Jay and the crisp rhythmic persuasion which guides the inventively spicy song. The song’s delicious throaty bassline aligns to sonic scythes and persistent grooves from the guitars as the song expands whilst the vocals smoulder harmonically and expressively as they colour the provocative narrative of the song. It all combines to provide a thick and potent stroll of anthemic rock ‘n’ roll coated in creative drama and emotive intrigue.

It is a potent and impressive start continued by recent single A Cut Above. From a charming melodic coaxing the song unveils its rhythmic muscles and raw riff led provocation. It is an walkingunderwaterpt2imposing presence tempered though by the increasingly mesmeric tones of Jay and the weave of sonic enterprise which wraps the brewing unrest in the belly of the song. Again Ellefson lures a heavily shadowed voice from his bass to menace and enthral whilst elsewhere everything merges in a portentous tempest which threatens more than assaults but leaves thoughts rampant and satisfaction basking. Again the track is an anthem, not one which charges with nostrils flared but an incitement which rouses the passions as it explores dark intense scenery.

Both Comfy Slippers and Fallen Angel explore different shades and depths, the album just as the previous full-length, a web of distinctly unique and imaginative explorations in sound and premise. The first of the two swiftly presents a pungent almost stadium rock texture to its emerging temptation, beats and hooks thick yet rapier like in the less condensed climate of the song. There is a warm radiance to the rock pop spawned encounter too which transfixes as it envelops and helps spark further hunger in an already greedy appetite for the album. The song pulsates in its melodic glow before making way for the scintillating drama of its successor. Every note and syllable has a sinister air and touch here, a haunted feel which is simultaneously sultry and alluring. As already proven Jay has the knack and skill at making dark and intense situations musically and lyrically seduce like a unashamedly flirtatious temptress, at making loud and subtle extreme collude for an inescapable web of aural theatre and no example any finer than right here.

Gift of Desperation steps up next and takes little time in absorbing ears and thoughts with its pulsing electronic courting which itself is soon wrapped in emotive resonance as vocals and slender but striking melodies entwine the sinew sculpted heart of the song. It has a dark and imposing presence which never drifts too far away from predacious heaviness and a destructive emotional theming, but it also expels blazes of sonic and harmonic passion courted by tempestuous tenacity and intensity. The outstanding track is unrelenting as it flares and traps the passions with stormy beauty, creating a consuming shadowed majesty which I Do Dissolve has to follow. It does in fine style, its vivaciously shimmering electro flooded entrance equipped with another irresistible vocal bassline and the grippingly expressive tones of Jay. It is just the initial lure though as a funky swagger infests the song to inspire a sturdy bounce which in turn seems to ignite the richness and theatrical elements of all corners of the song. For some reason the track at times reminds of Ugly Kid Joe, though it is a fleeting thought in the expansive enterprise of the fun.

The brilliant Noise carves another pinnacle, of which admittedly there are many, in the album, again dramatic suggestiveness coating every sway of notes and swing of strings. Challenging modern social habits online and beyond, the song is virtually smooching with ears and emotions from its first melancholic kiss and caress. To this tempting, crescendos of raw expression and ferocious sonic endeavour bursts in, hooks and riffs as antagonistic as the melodic heart of the track is tenacious. Seriously anthemic and the heaviest encounter on the album, the track is rock at its most instinctive and incendiary.

Featuring Croatian singer Sara Renar alongside Jay, Shine On glides in next to cup ears in enchanting melody seducing balladry. As expected there is still a dark edge to the song, a shadow which watches as the beauty colours senses and imagination. Though a slow burning persuasion in relation to other tracks, it soars into the emotions and memory with ease, its sonic flair and emotive tempting a lingering affair even after making way for the outstanding Whose Children. This is another song where hooks and grooves entrench in the listener with swift efficiency before flavoursome diversity in voice and sonic invention tango together in a compelling and ingenious design of suasion.

From that highlight the album leaves on another in the engrossing shape of Winter in July. A cover of the Loretta Heywood song, it also features the soul singer alongside Jay and as it soars and glides over the senses with a haunting elegance and harmonic grace, there will be few duets as powerful and thrilling as the album’s final track.

There were obviously high hopes and expectations for Walking Underwater Pt 2 because of its predecessor but also a wonder and maybe doubt whether lightning can strike twice in the same place in such a short time. Not only can it but it proves to be with greater scintillating success. The UK has numerous potential soaked melodic rock bands emerging, but with their promise realised and pushed on again, Johnny Wore Black is leading the way.

Walking Underwater Pt 2 is available digitally and on CD from November 26th via Dark Cherry.

For more info check out http://www.johnnyworeblack.com

RingMaster 13/11/2014

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Deaf Eyes – Self Titled

Deaf Eyes - Band

Started as a side project in 2013 of the experimental psych progressive metallers Incoming Cerebral Overdrive, Dead Eyes proves itself to be a distinct and formidable entity in its own right with its self-titled debut album. Colliding eight tracks of intense and thunderous post metal with senses and imagination, the instrumental band lives up to its intent of exploring “obscure experimental sounds and atmospheres,” and “a monolithic approach to hard and heavy riffs with a “delayed research” of alternative vibes mixed in a psychedelic mood.” That is quite a wordy description of what consumes and seduces within their album but one realised within the leviathans of sound and textures which transfix and immerse the listener from start to finish. The album is a beast of a proposition but equally a rigorously sultry temptress journeying through exhausting landscapes as imposingly cinematic as they are carnally ravenous.

The Italian quartet begins their voracious seduction with Black Canvas, and in no time thoughts and emotions are engulfed in the drama and almost savage soundscape of the track. Carnivorous riffs and even more bestial bass predation swiftly overwhelm the senses, backed by the intense weight and hunger of the swiping rhythms. Just as the track is immensely intimidating it also impressively takes the imagination into an evolving and challenging climate of sonic and inventive suggestion, across a terrain of danger and intrigue which erupts and snarls with skilled rabidity and riveting ingenuity. It is a demanding and irresistible experience with a contagion which is toxic and inescapable.

Its dark realms are shadowed by those of the following Mirrors, its specific turbulence and antagonism expelled in a barely milder tempest but one with flickers of light and melodic charm to its hostility. The bass has a growl to reverse a tsunami of ravenous beasts whilst guitars wield a sonic enterprise which binds with venomous potency whilst its infestation of infectiousness is Deaf Eyes - Coverimpossible to fend off or resist. It dark corners and shadows are no less merciless than its outright tempestuous climate as the song unleashes a sound which holds essences of the likes of Neurosis and Russian Circles to its breast as well as those of Morkobot.

A more celestial jeopardy is investigated in Orbits, though with all tracks the adventure unfurling is as unique to the listener’s thoughts as the sounds casting the canvas and sonic emprise inspiring them. The track is one of the less intrusive on the album but still a provocative maelstrom of seriously confrontational invention and enterprise, a description suiting both the tantalising exotic and evocative scenery of The Eyes Of Regret and the agitated majesty of Draining Sun. The first of the two descends into a cavernous and melodically infused sonic haze which is as emotionally expansive as it is ferociously unpredictable and inventively coloured. Its exceptional sonic and innovatively perilous emprise is equalled by its successor, the track a hypnotic dance of repetitive riffery and preying rhythms within a psychedelically hued blaze of disturbed sonic revelry. The track is scintillating, a corrosive waltz physically and emotionally which bewitches with cultish persuasion. The accompanying press release listed Goblin as references and of all the songs this with its haunted shadows and demonic colouring is the prime reason.

Red Desert Lullaby keeps body and emotions just as eagerly busy, its thick smouldering climate a wrap to perilous escapades to envision and a sonic rapacity to bask in whilst next up The Withered drifts into a sinister province of crawling shadows and haunted emotions. Their dark secrets converge around a rugged spine of bass and rhythmic bullying of ears and emotions, an ensnaring and violation of the senses setting thoughts and passions aflame. It is a glorious predator and portrait of lost and turbulent emotions, another binding and ingenious traverse of places most fear to contemplate let alone traverse.

The album closes with the just as dark and Luciferian Commiserate, a primal senses ravishing beauty which scars as it seduces. The bracing incursion into psyche and emotions is an enthralling end to an exceptional release, an album which is a playground for the imagination and trial by sonic fire for the senses. It is quite exceptional and provides a new excursion into the unknown for thoughts and emotions with every violating listen.

Deaf Eyes is available now via Argonauta Records @ http://www.argonautarecords.com/shop/music-/41-deaf-eyes-deaf-eyes-cd.html

https://www.facebook.com/deafeyesband

RingMaster 12/11/2014

https://soundcloud.com/deaf-eyes