Australasia – Vertebra

Australasia - Vertebra - Cover

Lifting the listener’s thoughts and imagination into an expansive and emotional almost visual flight through an ever evolving soundscape broken up into smaller evocative sceneries, Vertebra the new album from Italian band Australasia is one of those absorbing emprises you just cannot pull away. Ten tracks of predominantly instrumental merging of post rock, shoegaze, classic electronica, and enthralling ambience, the release is a masterful and compelling adventure. There is though much more substance than that description suggests, flavours and styles bred elsewhere seamlessly employed in the melodic web cast, and when vocals are rarely used they are more another texture to the creative narrative than any lyrical storytelling. The album as skilful and magnetic as it is equally suggests this is a project still in evolution with greater glories waiting on its horizon, something which just adds to the pleasure bred by Australasia.

The band is the creation of multi-instrumentalist Gian Spalluto who has linked up with Mina Carlucci and Giuseppe Argentiero of fellow Italian band Vostok. Touched by influences which include the likes of Red Sparowes, At the Gates, Joy Division, This Will Destroy You, Angelo Badalamenti, Mogwai, Pelican, Ennio Morricone, Cult of Luna and more, the band provides emotive landscapes and mesmeric incites which never restrain themselves musically or imaginatively to any singular intent or limiting frame. Australasia’s debut release, the Sin4tr4 EP of 2012, opened up the gateway to the band and its invention which the Immortal Frost Productions released Vertebra continues with striking strides into the awakening imagination and aural world of the band.

The journey opens with Aorta and a guitar cast melody which as the album progresses is a regular protagonist if in varying guises and intent. It is a mellow coaxing of a start to the song which gathers intensity in its breath as it opens up its creatively sinewed arms and melodic armoury. Hitting full stride early there is a tempestuous union of post rock provocation and metallic sculpting which flows and moves towards a stretch of sonic beauty and evocative reserve. Impressive rhythms and drums steer the enterprising exploration superbly and the guitar play is quite riveting across the body of the song. In its final thirty seconds or so the track unveils a union of male and female vocal harmonies which provides a last wash of warmth and elegance to the impressively crafted flight.

The following Vostok immediately offers a vintage electronica sound to thoughts though it is soon smothered by a strong cloud of sonic shadows and blackened emotion. The song undulates thrillingly as it progresses, big mountainous rhythms and textures mingled fluidly with tender elegance and those returning electronic caresses before dissipating for a lone acoustic guitar to wave the dark climes away. It is a track which seems to pass so quickly in time and though almost four minutes in length its successor Zero is soon feeding the senses and providing another heady structure of melodic imagination and rhythmic incitement. Not for the first or last time, the music reminds a little of The Cure around the time of the Seventeen Seconds /Faith albums, a shadowed energy coating the air of the song but speared by a melodic beauty which only raises the spirit and light.

Next up Aura roams through a more electro pop /shoegaze realm with eighties synth pop flavouring, though yet again there are intimidating resonances and dark clad tempting which tempers the radiance enough to add wonderful doubt and menace to the calm. The track also sees the captivating voice of Carlucci swarm siren like over the senses. Lyrically the track is uncluttered with effective repetition whilst gentle soaring harmonies make the prime successful persuasion. Like all the tracks, the song seems simple but holds a real deception as everything is so precisely and imaginatively woven together. The closing vocal scat does not quite work for personal tastes but it does not deflect from the smouldering piece of enjoyment.

Both the melodically flamed but intensively blackened Antenna, one of two tracks on the album taken from the earlier EP, and the excellent towering bulgingly muscular Volume continue the impressive height and stature of the album whilst the title track provides a pleasing short Spring respite with expressive tones and soft weaves, even if it feels a little like an anti-climax from the immense and lofty force and heights carved previously.

The second track from Sin4tr4 steps forward next. Apnea provides a reflective blend of imposing density and melancholic beauty wrapped in another bewitching vocal wash from Carlucci and an electro courting which pokes light through the cloudier ambience. It is a delicious embrace which makes way for the bordering on corrosive presence of Deficit. Scuzzy and thickly bonded to the ears, the track thrillingly riles up the senses but then before they can accept the intimidation the piece twists in on itself to lay a beauteous glaze of melodic endeavour on the incitement. It is a short but scintillating piece of composing and realisation waking up the appetite even further for the closing seven minute plus epic of Cinema. Arguably the track is a shade too long but it is a mere quibble when it makes such a compelling temptation across its emotionally clad presence.

Vertebra is a spellbinding release though to temper that slightly maybe it does not ignite a fire in the belly of the passions as often as it arguably could or should have, though again to put that into context, it is fair and easy to say that Australasia has created an adventure which is impossible to resist or stay away from. The band has the potential to create their own legacy you feel as their album permeates through thoughts and emotions, Vertebra a very striking start.

www.australasiamusic.com

www.facebook.com/australasiamusic

8.5/10

RingMaster 08/01/2014

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Alexanred – Non-Stop Non-Stop

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Just in case in the Christmas rush you missed the release of the debut single from Alexanred, we thought we would give you a nudge to one contagiously addictive track. Non-Stop Non-Stop is pure industrial virulence, a pulsating infection soaked song which pounds the senses with anthemic temptation and captures the imagination with arguably not ground-breaking but fresh and magnetic irreverence. It is not a release which will have your thoughts and emotions stretched and lost in contemplation but unashamedly a song which skilfully and mischievously goes straight for the primal and rhythmic beast inside with a bait of tub thumping rhythms and coarse electronic wantonness.

Formed last year Alexanred is the creation of Aleksi Susi, guitarist/synth player of Finnish industrial metallers 2 Wolves. Listing influences which include the likes of Rammstein, Lacuna Coil, Type O Negative, Cradle Of Filth, Paradise Lost, Septic Flesh, Rob Zombie, Prodigy, Autopsy, Nile and more, some which you could almost guess from the single, Alexanred makes an undeniably impressive entrance with the Inverse Records released Non-Stop Non-Stop. It is never wise to make a full judgement of a band upon one song, every artist more often than not having one acceptable gem inside them whoever they are, but it is hard not to anticipate and suggest richly promising and thrilling things to come from the project ahead.

Still from 'Non-Stop Non-Stop' video

Still from ‘Non-Stop Non-Stop’ video

The opening seconds of the song alone incite full attention; they maybe clad in a simple rhythmic lure and a restrictive pulsing electro rub but there is immediate intrigue and temptation which takes hold. Barely another moment passes before the track is in full muscular stride, synths stomping with devilry dripping from every note as vocals taunt from the surrounding shadows. Once Susi makes his full vocal appearance the sounds show a restraint to allow his almost whispered provocation to wash smoothly yet sinisterly over the senses. Soon though, the song is thrusting out its imposing chest within a riveting rhythmic caging, exploding into an anthem of sound and epidemic vocal incitement to confirm the seduction of thoughts and emotions.  As mentioned the track is not really setting new boundaries but with a raw threat and empowering intent to its vocal and rhythmic barracking, and a virulent toxicity to its electronic suasion the single is pure irresistible temptation.

Like the bastard inventive son of a union between Rammstein and Rob Zombie, Non-Stop Non-Stop is the perfect appetiser to band and their horizons, something it is hard to wait for with patience.

http://www.facebook.com/AlexanredFinland

10/10

RingMaster 08/01/2014

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Avelion – Liquid Breathing

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The tail-end of 2013 as well as festive fun saw the return of Italian metallers Avelion with their second EP, Liquid Breathing. Equipped with a new line-up and sound to that which bred their self-released 2011 debut Cold Embrace, the band returns to the fray with a release which raises questions, spawns a few doubts, but at the end of its persuasion offers plenty to get the imagination going and appetite for Avelion’s for their impending future keen.

Merging essences from melodic and alternative metal, progressive and electronic metal, to metalcore and industrial metal, and Avelion - Liquid Breathing cover artworkthat is just scratching the surface of the three tracks making up Liquid Breathing, Avelion create a sound and adventure which certainly grips attention and at times has the imagination all fired up. The tracks are undoubtedly impressively crafted even if a tempestuous mix which does not always flow or work as successfully as maybe they could. There is so much going on in songs that it is sometimes hard to grip on to particular aspects or moments and thoughts suggests stripping it back would help the tracks to make an even stronger impact, but then that daring to experiment and stretch things is one of many strong elements which makes the band an intriguing and exciting proposition. You feel though as the quintet of vocalist William Verderi, guitarist Gianmarco Soldi, bassist Mark Reggiani, drummer Damiano Gualtieri, and Oreste Giacomini on keys progress and hone their sound further it will all evolve into something which will intensely satisfy.

Liquid Breath starts things off, the track almost Numanesque in its entrance as a dark industrial/gothic breath is spawned by vocals and keys. The song is soon twisting before the ear though as djent bred riffs splinter the air and a rhythmic enticement rigorously leaps over the senses. The vocals of Verderi are a blend of reserved growling tones and clean melodies which works well predominantly, though at times across the EP a sturdier grizzled delivery was crying out to emerge in his tones even if Soldi provided some solid backing scowls of his own. As the track progresses it employs classically seeded keys, electro urgency, and eventually great welcome hellish vocal groans though they are short lived sadly. The encounter continues to leap and turn with ideas to great effect, the song emerging easily the strongest on the release clad in a thick creative promise of where the band is going.

The following Ain’t No Down makes its arrival with haunting monotone spawned keys almost mischievously teasing the senses before launching sinews and intent through an electronic swagger which could grace any Enter Shikari offering. It is an outstanding start with a potency which is almost lost when the song opens up, though those evocative keys continue to probe and coax within the brewing maelstrom. As its predecessor the track moves through flavours and ideas as if they were pick-a-mix but ultimately makes it work through the more intensive aggressive aspects. The rock pop moments are not as successful for personal tastes, slowing down the power and charge of the song and preventing its full expected explosion but equally the poppy chorus is as anthemic and addictive as you would wish so admittedly those questions and doubts raised are continually countered in some respect. When the track is firing on all imaginative cylinders though it really is an imposing treat but just let-down by the mellower restrained moments but nevertheless it still leaves you wanting to hear more.

The EP is closed by Mechanical Faces, a busy track which aligns melodic rock and industrial metal initially before infusing some hard rock revelry and excellent discord devilry. Though not as impressive as the opener the track feels more complete and in control than certainly the second track, that earlier suggested slight restraint on the want to throw multiples spices and threads of imagination at the song a successful option.

When Avelion is intensively going for the jugular they undeniably are at the top of their emerging game, gripping thoughts and emotions much more tightly and invitingly. It maybe is because the difference between the aggression and melodic tempering shown by the band is so pronounced that the tracks ebb and flow too much at times but as Liquid Breath alone shows when the band gets it right they are a force with the potential to raise real passions, though you would not want them to lose that desire to push their inventive limits either, the element which makes even the less successful songs satisfyingly digestible and heavy in promise.

https://www.facebook.com/AvelionMusic.Official/

7.5/10

RingMaster 08/01/2014

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Invidious – In Death

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As December drew 2013 to a close it saw the CD release of the In Death EP from Swedish death metallers Invidious, a release which had already worked its spiteful caustic charms on a great many with a digital appearance in 2011 via Imperium Productions. The four track slab of sonic brutality and unrestrained malevolence is a merciless cruel confrontation but one which deceptively infests the imagination to offer solace within the corrupting vicious storms. Raw and punishing the release and its sound is ripe for the death metal purists but equally ventures with plenty for more varied extreme metal tastes to find an appetite for and though it is not exactly a release to ignite the genre and new fans to feverish proportions, In Death is definitely a venomous encounter which warrants full attention.

Emerging in 2007 from the fallout of Katalysator founded two years earlier, the band changing its name to all extend and purposes, Invidious consists of vocalist Pelle Ahmann (Katalysator and ex-Katalysator), guitarists Hampe Death ( Degial / Unpure / Malign (live) and ex- Katalysator/Watain (live)/Degial Of Embos) and Andreas Meisingseth (ex-Katalysator / Graveless / Vindicate), bassist Gottfrid Ahmann ( In Solitude / Repugnant  and ex- Katalysator, ex-Immaculate/Obscene Infinity), and drummer J. K. (Ensnared and ex-Gravehammer). Through their first EP as Invidious the band rampages across the senses, the Sepulchral Voice Records released CD at times a muggy consumption which literally mugs the ears and senses but there is that something about In Death which makes you simply want and welcome the violation time and time again.

The release opens with a distant setting and sound which creates a menacing ambience aided by sonic squalls across its scenery. As Coversoon as the vocal squalls of Pelle Ahmann sends the introduction into the shadows Black Blood and band erupt in a torrential scourge of exhaustive riffing, bone splintering rhythms, and a melodically honed sonic tempting which niggles and seduces as potently as the emerging  infectious groove. Into its full height the track stomps and prowls with predacious mastery whilst switching with adrenaline lit charges which easily enlist a growing taste for the track. The bass of Gottfrid Ahmann is a constant threat and treat throughout the song, its dangerous rabidity adding extra menace to the already rapacious brute of an encounter.

The following Dead Salvation Spawn accosts the ears with spirals of sonic abrasion; flumes of venom which enjoyably reappear across the length of the track within the thunderous and malicious maelstrom savaging the senses. Again bass and guitars recruit a hunger for their intensive presence and sculpting, whilst drums and vocals bludgeon the listener with a nastiness and confidence which you can only eagerly indulge in. Like the opener the song twists and lurches into magnetic endeavour though as across the whole EP it often takes focused ears thrust deep into its toxic chasm to reveal all the impressive turns in place.

Throne of Death is a tsunami of acidic hostility which without quite finding the same appeal as its predecessors still corrodes the air with inciting bitterness musically and lyrically whilst some of the guitar invention and classically bred melodies are virulently enthralling. Its climax is slightly messy and dare one say slightly indulgent before the final thrilling scurrilous assault from the track, but it still leaves you breathless and hungry for more which the closing Visions provides with unbridled severity, if pleasingly speared by kinder grooves and melodic imagination which explore and stretch the track to greater heights.

Hopefully the CD release of In Death implies new material from the Uppsala quintet is on its way, something the EP certainly raises a hunger for. Invidious may not have created a classic with their EP, though each deep fall into its mordancy does make you rethink that a little, but you sense they have that triumph in them and if not plenty more releases like In Death will not be unappreciated.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Invidious/182505538468462

8/10

RingMaster 08/01/2014

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Toumaï – Sapiens Demens

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Creating what they term psyche-fonk metal, French band Toumaï is one of those encounters which send tingles down the spine as it teases and ignites the imagination. Unleashing a majestic psyche twisting bedlam in the tasty shape of debut album Sapiens Demens, the quintet from the south of France bewitch and tantalise with each psychotic note and every maniacal rhythm. Their album is a tempest of ideas and cracked invention presenting an adventure like no other and a pleasure which only turns lustful over time.

What little we can tell you about Toumaï is that the band formed in 2006 and consists of vocalist Antoine Flaven Hude, guitarist Julien Mahoudeau, bassist Christophe Applanat, drummer Clement Mahoudeau, and Célia  on keys and trumpet. That is about it, apart from the fact that their first album is irresistible and uncontrollably insatiable with imagination, mischief, and inventive hunger. The five-piece bring influences from the likes of Psykup, Infectious Groove, Primus, Gojira, Mr. Bungle, Primus Band, Rage Against The Machine, Tool, and Red Hot Chili Peppers into their fusion of funk, rock, and metal, but it is only one shade of the whole picture; the release a musical canvas which only the ears can truly represent not our simple words, though we will give it a go of course.

The opening track is Little Psycho, a title so apt for song and album. From an initial percussive tease the drums lay down a riveting frame around which the bass roams and leans on the senses with a menacing glee whilst the keys dance with energy and mischievousness over the ears as vocals explore their narrative with quality and equally enterprising rascality. The swagger of the song is a delicious bait alone within its ever changing gait and presence of the song whilst bursts of aggression make the perfect suitor to the elegant beauty which coats the keys and their melodic caresses. There is a similarity to fellow Frenchmen Mucho Tapioca at times as the song climbs and soars through its persistently shifting glory but also of System Of A Down in its latter moments and Faith No More across its stirring flanks.

The impressive start is immediately left in the wake of next up Madness in Mind, the best track on the album with ease. Vocal croons wrap the ears right away as the guitar and keys stroke attention to its fullest height, before the song settles into a ska kissed, reggae bred stroll within metallic walls which get their turn to intimidatingly press upon and please the senses. With its funk hips swaying leading to the raucous chorus, the track is like King Prawn meets Korn though when it slips into a beauteous wash of ever engaging keys and vocal harmonies punctuated by another striking bass line and rhythmic probing, the band takes the listener down a more alternative rock avenue. This is only halfway in though and the track only accelerates to greater potency and persuasion once it lifts its knees to romp into an infection soaked waltz of enterprise fusing the loco folk/pop of Mano Negra with the contagious unhinged temptation of Kontrust before thrusting it all through a Skindred bred causticity. It is crazy and completely enthralling, not forgetting simply sensational.

The following Petit Punk en Ut#m is no slouch in tripping the switch to the strongest satisfaction either, its more noise seeded rock and disorientating psyche funk tempting another feast of unpredictability and hunger breeding invention. Scavenging the senses for the weakest spot, the song flares over the opportunity with punk belligerence and metal sculpted antagonism as it works towards its climax, not before having seduced with dazzles of psychotic indie melody seeded teasing. Another highlight, the song is backed in strength by the less crazed Anachron, a track which admittedly does not quite reach those earlier set heights but still magnetises attention and appetite with its funk stepping vibrancy and contagious melodic smile.

Both Bankster and Wiki Puppies keep the listener on their toes physically and mentally, the first and extensive expanse of craft and imagination which lays down a pulsating quickstep of reggae spawned pop. This is then wrung through voracious cantankerous crescendos at certain moments which burst from the song’s wonderfully exhausting enticement which builds towards a dramatically powerful and aurally traumatic brilliant closing declaration. Its successor pounces and leaps over the imagination as if its notes and ideas are crossing hot coals. It is a tempestuous mix of jazz, rock, psyche, and avant-garde devilry placed in a maelstrom which seamlessly forges an addiction spawning triumph from it all, rhythmically, melodically, and vocally.

The two parts of the title track almost come as a shock, the first especially subdued and restrained in its cinematic atmosphere and noir clad shadows and spoken vocals in comparison to the rest of the album, though the second part is soon climbing up the walls with scorching grooves and twisting melodic flames igniting the air around the again excellent vocal presentation. A relatively, and we say that with tongue slightly in cheek, straight forward heavy rock infused slice of metal with those continually entrancing keys of Celia enticing the emotions, the track is a deeply pleasing venture setting up the appetite for the closing mastery of  Prey of Birds.

The final song enjoyably plagues the ears with a kaleidoscope of sounds and challenging invention shuffled to an inch of its cohesive life, but as on all tracks it casts a proposition which is fully coherent and wholly. Sapiens Demens is a thrilling testament to endeavour and outside the box thinking but crafted with a knowledge nestling within Toumaï of how far to go and where to link everything for an innovative and breath-taking whirlpool of sound. Another to add to the must have list.

http://www.toumai-music.net/

10/10

RingMaster 07/01/2014

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Colossus Of Destiny – In Lesser Brightness EP

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We have a tasty little treat to bring to your attention as the year opens up its arms in the towering form of the In Lesser Brightness EP. Six tracks of multi-flavoured metal veined by some mouthwatering fusions of heavy rock, the release from French band Colossus Of Destiny is a rigorously impressive encounter. Released last October but seemingly finding greater deserved attention over recent weeks, the EP is a riveting slab of enterprise and accomplished persuasion which should see the Paris band stepping into a wider intensive spotlight.

The 2009 formed Colossus Of Destiny consists of vocalist Adrien Guilmoteau, guitarists Julien Laville and Mathieu Miquel, bassist Guillaume Taliercio, and drummer Jérémie Le Formal. Taking influences from the earlier presences of bands such as Baroness, Tool, Kylesa, Unsane, and Taint into their distinctive sound the band has released two previous EPs, their self-titled debut of 2010 and Eden the following year. There is little more background info to be found but when a record like the Hellbound Records released In Lesser Brightness does the potent talking for them you do not have the want to know more. Bulging with rock muscles which flatten the senses and a metal bred intensity that shapes the imagination with predacious intent, the EP is an immense introduction for us and probably plenty more to a band which has over the past four years honed their persuasion into something quite irresistible.

Dismay In Empty Eyes sets things in motion, its emergence from a brief stormy ambience marked by thumping rhythms and a spiralling sonic coaxing from the guitars. The drums instantly impress as does the moody basslines and excellent vocal growls of Guilmoteau and as the track rises from its lumbering stretch without ever exploding into life, just continually loading layers of intensive textures upon the ears, the song becomes a compelling temptation to which the guitar casts rich spicery. A sludge borne weight wraps itself around the imposing track adding to its heavy potency whilst elsewhere vocally and musically, the song reaps varied flavours such as post hardcore and melodic metalcore to hard and post rock to make a striking start to the album.

Unleashed takes things to another level right away and with its successors takes In Lesser Brightness to a much higher plateau. Crushing rhythms and air scoring riffs spears the ears first, both soon ridden by scowling vocals as the song makes its impressive opening declaration. There is right away a much more aggressive urgency and force to the track compared to its predecessor, guitars niggling and combative whilst the bass holds a predatory gait and voice which urges on the bone splintering rhythmic attack. The song is pure contagion throughout, addictive without offering easy lightweight hooks and commanding without bludgeoning to achieve its success. With a punk breath to its metal/rock persuasion which not for the last time on the EP sparks thoughts of Fuckshovel and Gruntruck, the confrontation is a thrilling blast soon matched as the release strikes home its advantage on the passions.

The next up Get Lost also fuses stirring elements of punk, metal, and hardcore to sculpt another major pinnacle upon the EP. Snarling from vocals to riffs as rhythms slam with eager rapaciousness, the track is a voracious brawl on the imagination but one unafraid to slow its assault to merge strong melodic tempting and inventive twists into the creative raging. As soon as the song departs Heavy Loads leaps forward with ravenous riffs and sonic tantalising coaxing the senses to secure an early hunger for its potential offering which the track rewards with more distinctive and varied adventure in songwriting and sound. It is fair to say that some elements of song and release are bred from familiar territory but it is hard to think of anyone which sculpts and delivers those essences in the same dramatic way as Colossus Of Destiny.

The title track shifts things again, slowing the gait but adding some progressive invention to the imagination invading suasion superbly crafted by band and song. An absorbing merger of intensity and melodic expression it is an evocative and mouth-watering incitement, as the whole release, to devour greedily whilst the closing Naked & Unbound provides a final thrilling union of muscle, infectious grooving, and melodic fire to reinforce the impressive stature of In Lesser Brightness.

It is hard to imagine on the evidence of In Lesser Brightness and a retrospective look at their previous EPs that Colossus Of Destiny will not become a potent name and presence in forceful music so joining their certain rise right now makes the only sense. A stunning release from an outstanding band, you read it here!

https://www.facebook.com/colossusofdestiny

http://colossusofdestiny.bandcamp.com/

9/10

RingMaster 07/01/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from http://www.audioburger.com

Tapewyrm – House Of Cards

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Barely has the New Year had time to open its eyes and UK noise master Tapewyrm has crushed its arrival in a tempest of spiteful corrosive hostility with the House Of Cards EP. Consisting of five sonic scourges which fry the senses and obliterate the psyche, the release marks the closure of the first creative act of the project whilst possibly hinting at the new opening scene of its intensive imagination. It is vicious, merciless, and definitely not for everyone but for those finding beauty in aural destruction the release is a fascinating and riveting end of a chapter for a sonic protagonist who has already made a lingering deep scarring mark on noise and industrial provocation.

Tapewyrm is the studio project of Oxford musician Michael Drayven which from its emergence in 2010 took little time in drawing eager attention from the following year. Two digital demo EPs marked the cards of fans, media, and industry alike, before the release of debut CD Misanthropic Noize last year cemented and sparked new awareness for the presence of Drayven’s sonic infestations. The release was a masterful and disturbing intrusion which bred fear or rapture and House Of Cards is no different in effect, potency, and quality; just more demanding and punishing in many ways and if it ticks your boxes, ridiculously captivating.

The title track opens things up and instantly has the senses under a tsunami of sonic vitriol and industrial debris. The track intimidates and scores the ears within seconds but equally there is a haunting nightmarish temptation which partially distracts from or tempers the thick rasping tempest to seduce attention and imagination. Featuring the disturbed almost childlike vocals/utterings of Tiffanie Wells from Beinaheleidenschaftsgegenstand, the insidious coaxing is an unrelenting oppressive washing of the psyche which incites and scores thoughts and emotions into spellbound submission.

The following Chasing Ghosts is said to hint at the new direction of Tapewyrm in its second era and there is certainly a shift on the evidence of the piece which tantalises and catches the imagination. Like a moment from the soundtrack of Love Story if played out in the belly of a hell set industrial mixer, the excellent short sonic narrative is an emotive caress by inventive hands with the coarsest skin and hellishly intriguing. Its taunting is followed by the outstanding Careless, another permeating of the skin which infuriates like a sonic itch and seduces with a virulent addictiveness. The rhythmic stalking of the track niggles with an insatiable hunger whilst within the cloud of noise contagion melodies dance and blossom with a sexual wantonness and absorbing elegance. The impressive and enthralling encounter is like attempting to listen to a joyous carnival procession through the thickest swamp of tinnitus whilst a jackhammer nags mercilessly away face to face.

The release is completed by two remixes of tracks to be found on the previous Misanthropic Noize album. Firstly there is the Ruinizer remix of Save Yourself, a track which twists and rotates with a vibrant and understated presence but still licks potently with every repetitive note and electro clad sonic expression. It is succeeded by the Dirty K remix of Rebirth, a harsh caustic smothering of the ears which erodes and grates the senses to whimpering submission but holds back enough to create an addition forging aural treat.

From the Juggernaut Media Group released House Of Cards it is hard not to add a little impatience to the anticipation of what comes next from Tapewyrm as you sense it will be something to shake and disturb mind and emotions. This is a project which will leave a great many cowering and running but if noise is your masochistic treat than here is one raw and minimalistic fury which just has to be investigated.

https://www.facebook.com/Tapewyrmofficial

http://music.juggernautservices.com/album/house-of-cards

8.5/10

RingMaster 07/01/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Nigromante – Black Magic Night

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Initially breeding uncertainty about its presence, Black Magic Night the debut album from Spanish metallers Nigromante emerges as a rather captivating confrontation. It has flaws and at times struggles to make the fullest persuasion but equally it earns an appetite from the emotions which means it will be no stranger to regular attention. Unapologetically standing in the midst of N.W.O.B.H.M. and eighties US metal, band and album create a proposition which holds no surprises for fans of that era but plenty for them to get their teeth and neck muscles into.

Hailing from Madrid, Nigromante began in 2003 and over the years has become a sizeable proposition in Spanish metal if not yet breaking into a wider arena. Consisting of guitarist/vocalist Angel Muñoz and drummer Jorge Serrano and taking influences from the likes of Black Sabbath, Megadeth, Witchfinder General, Anvil, Motorhead, Venom, and Barón Rojo into their invention, Nigromante has bred a strong live reputation since forming and shared stages with bands such as Grim Reaper, Paradox, Midnight Priest, and Virus. Now after a trio of demos between 2004 and 2006, the band finally unleash a full-length encounter courtesy of Shadow Kingdom Records and though it is not exactly going to blow you away or set a new marker for old school heavy metal, it taunts and lingers long enough after the event to stand out and tempt a regular rampage with its accomplished rabidity.

It is fair to say that Black Magic Night does not start off with a bang, the first couple of tracks getting the job done and setting a2300647838_10the scene without raising any sparks in the imagination or emotions, though as it progresses the album addresses that with contagious enterprise. Nevertheless both the opener Heavy Metal Age and the following title track trigger and grab enough interest to allow the release to expand its presence. The first of the pair slaps the ears with heavy duty rhythms and charged riffs from the start, and though arguably forges a formula engagement satisfies as sinews ripple and sonic craft whips around the ears. The vocals of Muñoz also take a little time to adapt too, his grizzled tones strong but wandering with notes at times but again like the album they seem to blossom as the record progresses. The second track stomps in with nostrils flaring and riffs lashing the air whilst the rhythms of Serrano firmly steer the song. Like its predecessor it satisfies without leaving a lasting impression but it is impossible to deny its presence as again it does the job needed to ensure the listener stays on course with the album.

Things move up a level with In Nomine Pater, the initial melodic coaxing instantly soaked in strong potency whilst the familiar but infectious groove teasing behind the coarse vocals soon has the imagination and feet playing with its lure. That familiarity covers the whole song eventually but to a positive effect with comparisons to Anvil a definite overriding but not displeasing thought. The track twists and tempts with the guitar and bass almost wanton in their appetite to thrill and seduce the imagination. Muñoz is a skilful musician and though he like Serrano never gets or takes the song into intricate areas it is easy to see the craft and potential at work.

     Saturnalia of Blood with its predatory riffs and preying basslines provides an appetising moment similar in appeal to the opening pair before making way for the moments the album excels, starting with False Idol. The track is a masterful prowl of ears and imagination; guitar and bass stalking from the start whilst the drums punctuate their goading with forceful probing. It is a mighty start which explodes into greater heights as ridiculously addictive grooves and rapacious energy swarms all over the senses. Again there is something recognisable to the song, if indefinable, but with not for the first time a great breath of thrash urging on the intent and a magnetic cast of melodies and hooks lining up to incite the passions, the song is a scintillating provocation. It is immediately matched by the following pair of Syndicate of Crime and Soy Un Macarra, the first equipped with a Cape Crusader like toxicity and antagonistic predation plus a more than punkish snarl whilst its successor takes those same elements in a different guise and to greater infectious intensity to create a punk/metal track which would not feel completely out of place in a playlist from Fuckshovel or the Ruts. The songs steer the album to much greater heights whilst showing that the band has the capability to fuse plenty of elements into their classic metal assault.

     Satan Death Squad is another to walk the release’s highest plateau, the song a more standard old school metal slab of muscle but one with riffs and sonic intrigue which continues the hold on the imagination and emotions forged by the previous encounters. Definitely the quartet of songs takes the album from being an ok release into a beast which demands continued attention. Closing on Summoning Spell an underwhelming short instrumental, Black Magic Night from a shaky start turns into an album you just want a little bit more of again and again. It is not a classic or likely to threaten your favourite aural tipples but its pleases and entertains at times as if it reads your every want from a metal release and that is always well-worth checking out.

www.facebook.com/nigromante.heavymetal

8/10

RingMaster 07/01/2014

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Rhoda May – Sessions

Rhoda May Online Promo Shot

    The info sheet accompanying the promo for Sessions, the debut EP from UK progressive rock instrumentalists Rhoda May, waxes lyrical about band and it has to be said that after being washed over by its absorbing potency and imaginative aural narratives the release offers, you can only agree with rather than doubt the claims made. The six track release is a magnetic slice of sonic majesty, a sextet of songs which tease and ignite the imagination without ever over doing anything. The tracks tempt and hint rather than paint exact pictures and with an uncluttered sinewed beauty only seduce the imagination and passions to a full acceptance and hunger for EP and band.

    The Surrey trio of guitarist Will Pain, bassist Andy Page, and drummer Mark Sanger originally conceived the idea of Rhoda May mid-2012 but it was not until last year that the long-time friends officially formed the band after a local venue promoter who happened to overhear the band rehearsing asked them to support UK hip hop/metal pioneers Senser. From that debut show the threesome has gone on to support the likes of Heights, Freeze The Atlantic, and Three Trapped Tigers, all the time increasing their emerging presence. Their first release consists of the 347 and 589 live sessions recorded with producer Jason Wilson (We Are The Ocean, Reuben, Dinosaur Pile Up) and James Kirk respectively. All tracks were recorded as live takes for a series of live videos filmed & directed by Emma Dalesman and now get their appearance together as an EP release, six songs which cast a mouth-watering adventure of modern rock.

     All the tracks upon Sessions are simply numbered which allows the listener to interpret the songs without any prompting or Rhoda May - Cover Artworknudging which even a song title can do; the slices of absorbing creative invention the only persuasion  upon thoughts and emotions. As opener #3 strolls into view with the guitar of Pain jangling seductively around the ear as the gentle rhythmic incitement of Sanger coaxes equal attention, there is an instantaneous connection as a familiarity and mesmeric bait washes the senses. The bass of Page offers a no less potent lure, again with an initial reserve and provocative tone which sparks attention. There is a surf rock essence to the melodic guitar sculpting throughout which is an easy appetiser but it is merely one spice in the melodic rock enticement emerging tantalisingly. Overall the track is a flight through rugged yet radiant climes and textures, never so thick in sounds and structures to threaten or slow its fluidity and riveting adventure but using the simplicity that a mere three instruments can produce to transfix and almost belie the undoubted craft and intensively shaped enterprise.

    It is a masterful start soon equalled by the scorched sonic landscape of #4, a track which smoulders with heavy rock rapaciousness whilst conjuring a melodic luminance which sways and bewitches like a fire bred temptress. As with its predecessor the piece is unafraid to slow its muscular power to offer tender superbly crafted enticements or once comfortable licking and teasing the passions to rile things up and open the gates to another surge of sonically forging metallic endeavour.

     Both #7 and #5 continue the powerfully impressive entrance of release and band, the first an evocative melodically poetic piece of predacious rock which delivers a slight eighties goth rock breath to the guitar whilst the latter is a scuzz kissed fuzz rock persuasion to eagerly indulge in and imaginatively contemplate. As mentioned earlier there is at times a familiarity which coats elements and passages of tracks, this pair being no exception, but it only adds to the strength and colour of the tracks as they spark mind and passions with their delicious bait and rigorous creative charm.

      #8 takes the listener by the hand and leads them into a compelling soar through weather battered rocky terrain lit by melodic beauty and invention which again simply ignites the senses and imagination with sublime ease. Rhoda May perform musical alchemy at times across the EP and especially within this engrossing and mentally invigorating venture. Its triumph is almost shaded by the excellent closing track #9. From its mischievously nagging entrance of jagged riffs and alluring sixties bred guitar enchantment the track expands to build an emotionally textured soundscape, drums and bass crafting heavy dark infused skies beneath which emotive and provocative mastery urges thoughts to build their own adventure. It is a scintillating end to an outstanding debut.

     It is fair to say that Pain primarily grabs attention with his guitar skill and invention but do not assume that Page and Sanger are part players, the trio converging as Rhoda May to create something which needs and exploits every element to create an impressive stunning sound. With thoughts of bands such as Deftones, KingBathmat, Palms, and early Cure amongst others showing their prompts throughout but never to overwhelm something that is original and fascinating, Sessions gives evidence of Rhoda May’s PR claim that they could be “the next band to nationally break.”

www.rhodamay.com

 www.facebook.com/rhodamayband

9/10

RingMaster 06/01/2014

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Heaven Asunder – Among The Damned

  Heaven Asunder Online Promo Shot

    From their explosive live performances and previous Dead Man’s Waltz  EP, UK metallers Heaven Asunder has bred a very healthy anticipation for their debut album Among The Damned. Now with its unleashing the ten track blaze of melodic passionate metal gives potent evidence as to why there has been such an awaiting appetite. The release may be does not set new markers to fully challenge originality but impressively accomplished and rigorously engaging, the album is soaked in a captivating promise and invigorating strength which marks out the Bristol band as a proposition to eagerly indulge in.

     Formed in 2009 by five guys at University sharing the same flat, the quintet of vocalist Matt Boyd, guitarists Lewis Blake and Ally Roberts, bassist Lewys Ball, and drummer James Whitlock took little time in creating a live presence which seeded the reputation firing up the hunger for their album. Heaven Asunder has ignited stages alongside the likes of 36 Crazyfists, Idiom, Fearless Vampire Killers, When We Were Wolves, Odessa, Shining (Nor), The Smoking Hearts, The Dead Lay Waiting, Crown the Empire, and Issues since forming whilst Dead Man’s Waltz only added to their brewing stature. Thoroughly enjoyable and a powerfully satisfying encounter, Among The Damned expands the rising presence of the band whilst paving the way for stronger expectations of major things ahead from the band.

      The album hits hard right away with opening track Shallow Graves and though in hindsight the song is not the most Heaven Asunder - Cover Artworkgrabbing and gripping on the release it sets things off with hunger and energy. Immediately riffs are greedily stroking the ears whilst the rhythms of Whitlock slap the same from pillar to post. With a great melodically seeded breath wrapping the senses after the aggressive start to allow things to settle, the track is soon back to a keen rampage, the guitars casting well-crafted and alluring sonic patterns which entice and tease whilst the bass of Ball prowls within their bait with menace and depth. The vocals of Boyd backed ably by Roberts are equally as appealing as the sounds and though there is better to come from the release the track is a formidable and appealing blaze of melodic metal.

     Of Coat And Arms keeps up the momentum and potency of the start, the initial melodic coaxing similar to its predecessor but soon expanding with greater growl to the riffs and expressive adventure to vocals and melodies. Admittedly there is little strikingly new going on but there are no doubts about the imagination and skill employed in the use of the previously trodden spicery as the song wraps the listener in something richly appetising and thoroughly accomplished. This is right away built upon by the thumping presence of the excellent Nothing More, the track the most carnivorous and belligerent on the album yet again bringing an impressive and perfectly sculpted merger of violent passion and intent with equally powerful melodic and inventive exploration. Keys add another texture and evocative persuasion to the absorbing encounter whilst the bass, as all aspects, digs into a deeper corner of enticement to help forge the first major pinnacle of the album. The accompanying promo to the release mentions 36 Crazyfists as a reference, and it is hard to disagreed, but to that you can add the better moments of Avenged Sevenfold and the power of Killswitch Engage as well as other essences, all brought into a wholly enjoyable and exciting proposition.

      The likes of the fiery Reviver, a track which flares up and bites at various moments within another pleasing provocative meeting between band and thoughts, and the confrontational Another Broken Soul ensure the album continues to ignite the senses even if both fall slightly before the height set by Nothing More. That plateau is soon seriously challenged though by the next up The Silencer, the track a bruising and challenging treat soaked in rhythmic rabidity and vocal spite whilst driven hard by predacious enterprise and voracious guitar creativity. Its successor, the ravenous Last Rites, is no slouch in seizing and tossing around the senses and passions either. With nagging riffs and a great mixed vocal attack from Boyd laying down irresistible temptation from within the emerging dramatic and merciless aggression, the song is another commanding peak of the album.

     Both Lest We Be Scattered and Stranded provide an appealing closing stretch to Among The Damned, even if neither quite lives up to the previous duo. Despite that it is impossible to pull yourself away from their strong suasions before they make way for the outstanding conclusion to the release, State Of Things To Come. Sinews ripple viciously across the enthralling provocation whilst riffs and hooks saunter and prey upon the senses with rapacious intent and imagination. It is a stirring intensive end to an equally blistering and exhaustive release. Among The Damned is a great full introduction to a band you can only see going from strength to strength. The album does not carve out new adventures but certainly provides a tempestuous and thrilling storm of enjoyment to make Heaven Asunder a band to embrace fully in 2014.

www.facebook.com/heavenasunder

8/10

RingMaster 06/01/2014

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