Holy Mountain – Ancient Astronauts

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Binding the senses in grooves which show no restrain or mercy in their insatiable temptation and plying that slavery with riffs which voraciously gnaw and smother all before them, Ancient Astronauts the new album from Scottish metallers Holy Mountain, is an unstoppable juggernaut of sound and intensity. It is a heavyweight antagonist merging stoner and doom metal into a suffocating tsunami of intense and exhaustive sounds, but one which veins and sears it all with at times corrosive but always incendiary magnetic grooves and melodic causticity. It is quite simply an encounter which lovers of the riff will devour with greed.

Holy Mountain, its name taken from the Alejandro Jodorowsky’s 1973 movie La Montana Sagrada, was formed in 2009 as an improvisational duo by guitarist/vocalist Andy McGlone and drummer Pete Flett. Two years after emerging, the Glasgow band enlisted bassist Allan Stewart and went almost straight into the creation of debut release Earth Measures. The mini album found its release in the May of 2012 welcomed by strong responses and acclaim, a reaction sure to be replicated and taken to greater levels by its impressive successor. Recorded with producer Paul Savage (Mogwai, Franz Ferdinand), Ancient Astronauts is a giant leap if not for mankind certainly for Holy Mountain as they explore all the qualities unveiled on their previous release far more intensively and inventively whilst casting new wild and expansive endeavours.

LV-42666 brings the journey into view, cruising in on a sonic breeze before stroking the imagination rigorously with thrashing rhythms, Holy-Mountain-Ancient-Astronauts-300x288rapacious riffs, and addictive grooves; rogue vocals adding to the celestial mystery and adventure. As urgent as it is heavy, the track strides boldly as sinews bare their muscular appetite and melodies seduce ears with the guile and irresistible lures of a wanton temptress. There is also an unmistakable psychedelic pop romp to the encounter which only accelerates its submission of the senses and passions.

The following Luftwizard instantly brings a darker and heavier suasion but again it is lit by scorching melodies and also this time vocal harmonies which flirt and tempt the imagination as potently as the sounds. The voice of McGlone is fed through a Roland Space Chorus across the album bringing a spatial quality to his tones and the general air of songs, something equally inspired by the majestic pungency of accompanying keys. The thick imposing riffs of the song provide a deep texture to the affair which almost groans in its intensity and rapacious wrapping of the sonic maelstrom within. It is a masterful adventure guiding the listener through a union of dark and light, a mutual rather than combative merger but one with plenty of imposing shadows to its exultant fire.

The title track comes up next exploring cavernous sceneries with doom bred prowling riffery and rhythmic provocation whilst short but virulent grooves lance the thick smothering air, their strikes beacons through the appealing murkiness as the song heads into an explosive contagion which bursts out with urgency and sonic radiance. The track touches the darkest depths and brightest highs in tone leaving the senses exhausted and rewarded by the riveting ascent, their recovery given no respite as Star Kings from a rhythmic draw swiftly courted by a highly tempting bass stroll, feeds another strenuous passage of ravenous riffs and fuzz surfaced enterprise. The vocals are a little further forward and carry stronger clarity within the tempest of sound, though they still feel pleasingly immersed in the overall flood of the experience rather than being an overlying presence riding the waves. It is an aspect which is as potent and important as the riffs and rhythms in making the album the immense proposition it is, they and the ridiculously contagious toxins which the band also casts into the creative rabidity.

Not necessarily the best track, so hard to choose one, but a definite favourite here is Tokyo which comes next. A bestial vicious voice and growl to the riffs drives the track initially whilst the bass with its throaty appeal makes the good guy in the confrontation, its smiling grooves the temper to the predacious guitar grizzle and the trigger to the flirtatious sonic temptation and boisterous vocals which revel in the overwhelming devilry of the track. It is a siren of a song which is matched by Gift Giver, the danger which usually accompanies such a tempting and arguably missing in its predecessor, an open stalking at the start of the song. Its slow pacing is soon ignited as riffs escape their shackles, a punkish urgency taking over whilst the drums hold a little restraint in attack if not power. It continues to switch between extremes bringing a scintillating and unpredictable soundscape to play with and explore, a post punk severity adding its taunts from time to time in the lulls between unbridled sonic blazes. The instrumental is riff heaven and groove manna thrown into an aural alchemy and corruption to bask in.

The album is completed by firstly the seventies seeded psychedelically enhanced 100 Years A Day and lastly the smouldering expanse of Hollow Hill which alone encapsulates all you need to know about Holy Mountain in sound, skill, and imagination, as well as influences with a range of twists and enterprise which pull up references to Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Electric Wizard, ones you can apply to the whole of the album even with its distinct presence. Ancient Astronauts is a magisterial slab of psychedelic rock/metal and Holy Mountain a band poised to stake their claim for a seat on the top table of the genre we suggest.

Ancient Astronauts is available now through Chemikal Underground digitally and on limited edition vinyl.

http://www.holymountainband.co.uk/

9/10

RingMaster 17/04/2014

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Cave of Swimmers – Self Titled

 

CoS

Originally self-released last year, the self-titled debut EP from Cave of Swimmers now has its deserved wider release with The Path Less Traveled Records, and an insatiably magnetic treat it is. Consisting of four irresistibly flavoured tracks which are unpredictable and compelling, the release ignites ears and imagination with a contagiously adventurous and dramatically enthralling encounter. Fusing the rich essences of varied metal and rock ventures into mouthwatering landscapes, band and EP provide one surprising and wholly captivating encounter.

Cave of Swimmers consists of Guillermo Gonzalez (vocals, guitar, synth) and Arturo Garcia (drums/backing vocals), two musicians hailing originally from Venezuela who relocated to Miami a few years back. The pair met in school but it was only nine years after their first meeting when Garcia git his first drum kit that the pair started making music together. They played in a few projects including a Rage Against The Machine cover band before Garcia moved to Miami followed four years later by Gonzalez. More years passed before the pair linked up musically properly, forming The Tunnel before renaming it Cave of Swimmers.

Their debut release instantly tells you all you need to know about the pair, their influences, intentions, and undoubted musical skills. From  CoS coverthe opening track Hangman, the band unveils a superbly textured and provocatively spices weave of styles and flavours ranging from seventies heavy metal and psychedelic rock to stoner and doom as well as a stirring progressive encrusted spicery. As the first song proves it is a riveting and refreshing concoction which hits the sweet spot time and time again. Song one instantly has attention at its will with eagerly coaxing rhythms framing expressive and inventive guitar suggestiveness. It is a heavy and melodically infused invitation which losing a little of its grip when relaxing into a less surprising stride, though it soon regains its potency with the outstanding vocals of Gonzalez. His voice soars and roars simultaneously, complementing and driving the sounds around him whilst his guitar, as the rhythms of Garcia, tie up any lingering doubts with anthemic arms.  As confirmed by all songs, there is never a moment to assume you know the destination of a track, a thrilling jazz/funk like salsa of Latin rhythmic temptation and melodic seduction tripping up expectations towards the middle of the first song before excellent guitar craft entwines ears and thoughts.

The outstanding start is soon matched by the initially bewildering Materia. A sinister atmospheric embrace coats the senses first, the breath of the moog synthesizer lying provocatively upon the ears as a rhythmic hurrying pushes the listener into the thick doomy arms of the song. It is a slowly tempered prowl which courts the imagination before being torn apart by the vocal flames of Gonzalez, his delivery verging on operatic and a shock to assumptions, a very welcome and absorbing jolt to expectations. The track continues to stalk with a noir clouded ambience and heavy footed muscular persuasion. It is an irresistible bewitchment, a beautifully thought out and presented drama which explores a brighter but still doom bred scenery. Keys and guitars cast further twists in the haunting narrative as they drop into a frightening textures and sonic mystery before reaching skywards with emotive invention to close the song.

The song Cave of Swimmers steps up next instantly employing open homages to the likes of Sabbath and Pentagram in riffs and melodic grooving whilst vocally they are again sparked by a heavy metal seeding. It is only part of the song’s colour though; it’s contagious hooks and winding sonic bait offering thoughts of Kyuss and Metallic in varying degrees. Inventive and persistently shifting in its gait, intensity, and pure imagination, the song escorts the listener on a breath-taking ride across scorching melody draped scenery and sultry sonic climates, closing out in a blistering vocal crescendo.

The strikingly impressive and immense infection of the release never abates across its length, the closing Catch ensuring the EP ends on the same lofty heights as it started on. The track arguably is the least adventurous of the four but still treats with stoner visited psychedelic temptations and the ever impressing vocal suasion, whilst samples and progressive tinkering only enhance the recipe. It is a fine end to a masterful and rapturous debut by a band with all the potential to make major strides and deposits in the world of metal. Make a note of the name Cave of Swimmers you will be hearing a great deal more of these guys we suspect.

Cave of Swimmers is out on The Path Less Traveled Records now!

https://www.facebook.com/caveofswimmers

http://thepathlesstraveledrecords.bandcamp.com/album/cave-of-swimmers

10/10

RingMaster 16/04/2014

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KING GOAT uncages new EP on Monday 28th April‏

King Goat Online Promo Picture

NEW EP UNVEILED AND TOURING TO BE ANNOUNCED BY KING GOAT!

 

Brighton noise chiefs release their sophomore self-titled EP on Monday 28th April and plan a widespread assault on the UK!

Crafting together the more engaging key elements of psychedelic and doom, along with carefully measured Eastern influences, ‘King Goat’ hammer out gargantuan grooves, producing a sound that is hypnotic, dynamic, progressive and ultimately alluring.

Hailing from Brighton, King Goat were born at the start of 2012 and swiftly released their debut EP ‘Atom’, which garnered praise from many stems of the underground. Soon after its release, the band changed frontmen and the newly rejuvenated quintet quickly solidified, commencing work on their next EP. A plethora of shows followed as the band laid siege on London and throughout the South coast. With a growing reputation for delivering memorable performances packed with earnest energy and genuine presence, it’s no wonder that the Brighton bruisers soon amassed an army of followers.

Towards the end of 2013, the band hit the studio to work on their new self-titled EP, and they’ve absolutely nailed the songs to the wall. Culminating in an epic journey, the record features three killer tracks that masterfully claim their own identities and plot their very own courses. The EP starts off with the psychedelic-doom infused texturing of ‘The Final Decline’, which sways and flows from hypnotic eastern-influenced early passages to a climatic conclusion complete with weighty riffage and impressive vocal work. ‘Cult Obscene’ is next up and it’s a gut-punching musical stampede stocked with changing patterns and intricate structures. ‘Melian’s Trance’ closes the record as it unleashes a barrage of cutting riffs that ever so slightly nod in the direction of Sabbath; aided by pounding drums and punchy bass, the track is a stunning piece of doom metal, and clearly highlights the five-some’s songwriting craft. Now armed with an explosive EP, the band plan to hit every sweatbox throughout the UK. Dates are imminent, so stay tuned to their Facebook page for more.

BAND MEMBERS: Trim (Vocals); Petros (Lead Guitar); Reza (Bass); Joe (Rhythm Guitar); Jon (Drums).

FOR FANS OF: Bison B.C.; Black Sabbath; Mastodon.

King Goat Cover Artwork

www.facebook.com/kinggoatbri

 

 

 

 

 

Calabrese – Born with a Scorpion’s Touch

 

CALABRESE  2 (Born With A Scorpion's Touch) 2013

    Calabrese has continued to steal the passions of psychobillies and horror punks worldwide since stepping forward in 2003. Album after album, song after song, show after show, they have been a persistent magnet for those infected by their distinct sound and riotous b-movie inspired presence, and we stand amongst the legion infected. So it was with relish we dived into the band’s fifth album Born with a Scorpion’s Touch which receives its UK uncaging this month. Each of the band’s previous albums has impressed and pushed the band’s adventure but with the new contagion, the trio of blood brothers, Bobby, Davey, and Jimmy Calabrese has unlocked a maturity and exploratory enterprise which opens up a new chapter for the band in songwriting and presence. The trademark Calabrese sound is still the potent lure but it is graced and veined with a greater expanse of styles and ingenuity to create quite possibly the pinnacle of the band’s exploits to date.

     The band has always built their sound on the influential breaths of bands such as The Misfits, Black Flag, Samhain, The Damned, Black Sabbath, Danzig, and Ramones, and there is certainly no deviation from that potent well upon Born with a Scorpion’s Touch either but it is infused with a rich incitement of varied metallic and heavy rock essences within their individual sound. It emerges from this dramatic brew as an enthralling and unpredictable encounter, one which continues to make Calabrese a major force and provocation in underground rock ‘n’ roll. Now though they might just become a well-known incitement for world attention thanks to Born with a Scorpion’s Touch.

    Released via Spookshow Records, the album opens with the brief American Rebel Death Riders, a primarily instrumental Calabrese Born With A Scorpion's Touch Album Covertrack which fires up the energy of album and listener with its mix of groove and thrash metal within a juggernaut of rock ‘n’ roll voraciousness. The track rampages down the ears highway igniting imagination and emotions before departing for the following title track. From the first of expected film samples which has always coloured the band’s releases, a ravenous groove breaks free from within a blaze of riffs and thumping rhythms. It is irresistible toxic bait from which the band swings their hooks and infectious chorus to predictably irresistible effect. It is fair to say there is not many bands who can breed the virulence to their barbs and calls as the Phoenix threesome and no chance that the band will lose their lethal touch, as proven by the second track. Again there is a broader hard rock stroke to the song without removing itself from the masterful walls of psychobilly and horror rock.

     I Wanna Be a Vigilante continues the impressive start, its opening wind swept beach reminding a little of the classic Shangri-las’ song, is soon welcoming the croon of Bobby and Jimmy’s vocals and an emotively honed blaze of melodic punk spawned pop balladry with a definite Ramones like aspect to its expanding walls and lures. There is also an element which reminds of The Damned, a gothic glaze that only adds to the depths of the track’s drama. From its commanding presence the snarling bass of Jimmy welcomes in the next up At Night I Am the Warmest, a track which launches at the ears with a feverish appetite and energy once into its full charge. The rhythms from Davey thump and pummel with intimidation whilst grooves and hooks engage and seduce the senses, all held under the rein of the excellent vocal persuasion singularly and dually of Bobby and Jimmy. As epidemically commanding as a voracious fever, the track leaves appetite and emotions aflame before they are taken on another inflammatory ride by the sonic surges and hunger of Loner at Heart. The track burns and sears the sense with a predatory gait and intensity to its antagonism but tempers it with a delicious weave of melodic and addiction forging enterprise.

     Both Mindwarp and Danger leave lingering fingerprints on passions and memory, the first an almost brawling stomp of rock pop with horror rock provocation and its successor a rhythmically menacing encounter courted by sonic beauty and a cache of insidiously compelling barbed grooves and anthemic toxins. It is a brilliant trap living up to its name with ease. Its might is as good as matched by the tarmac smelling heat of Ride with the Living Dead, the song just another which sparks imagery and creative thoughts as powerfully as it does the ardour which only increases its rapture for the release.

    Only the Dead Know My Name moves in on the imagination next, another ambient setting the veil for a track which seduces with more swerves and curvy temptations than a lap dance and just as unhealthily captivating as reality fades away once up against the claws and grip of the song. It is a stylish and impossibly alluring dance with riffs and hooks instinctive protagonists to give full submission to, as are those unleashed by the brilliant I Ride Alone, though brilliance can be draped over every song on this exceptional inspiration as a trait. As with all the songs, there is a wider, richer colour and fermentation to the band’s songwriting and sound which simultaneously feeds all wants and desires for a Calabrese release whilst exceeding those needs with even greater challenging adventure.

   Closing with the rigorously catchy There’s an Evil Inside, a more singularly rockabilly cast treat, Born with a Scorpion’s Touch is a magnificent slab of resourceful and inventive rock ‘n’ roll, one unafraid to push its and the band’s formerly perceived boundaries, though they have never stood still in pressuring limits to be fair. We suggested that the album was possibly the pinnacle of the band’s creativity until now, listening to it again as this is written let us amend that by omitting possibly.

http://www.calabreserock.com/

10/10

RingMaster 17/03/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Canaya – Sealed Within The Walls

canaya pic

    Like being caught between the eyes with a sledgehammer and then brought back to consciousness with a voraciously brutal seduction, the Sealed Within The Walls EP from British metallers Canaya is a real beast of a proposition. It is a merciless and compelling slab of ferocious confrontation infused with a riveting and absorbing wealth of inspiring riffs and potent grooves, a towering heavy weighted triumph from one of the UK’s most impressive if still ‘undiscovered’ metal bands.

     Featuring ex-members of Tangaroa, Executive Distraction Tasks, Hot Prophecy and Nerve Engine, Canaya was formed in 2010 and soon drew acclaim and eager attention with debut EP Alignment Of Dying Planets that same year. Live the Leeds quartet of vocalist Simon Wright, guitarist/vocalist Owen Wilson, bassist/vocalist Chris Wilson, and drummer Andy Richards have also wasted audiences, performances amongst a great many including Damnation Festival, Brew Records, Big Spaceship, Brainwash, and British Wildlife and with bands such as Narrows, Keelhaul, Knut, Coliseum, Humanfly, Melt Banana, Hawk Eyes, Brontide, and Lavotchkin, all increasing and reinforcing the powerful emergence of the band. The video of the single Dios Muerto found heavy viewing and support on YouTube, leading to the attention of Ginger from The Wildhearts who invited Wright to provide guest vocals on his album Mutation. The Hyde & Seek released Sealed Within The Walls is the next thunderous incitement from Canaya and possibly the trigger to the widest recognition, it is hard to imagine any other outcome.

     Opening track Levitating Casket, the new single from the release, instantly storms the ears and senses with a concentrated 1797464_581774275248163_604048507_nand intensive barrage of punches from the drums and broad sonic swipes of guitar. Each has a fearsome weight and intent in their power which the bass only empowers with its imposing predacious intensity. It is a striking start which spreads into a sonic causticity with animosity drenched vocal squalls from Wright supported by the two Wilsons. Continually twisting its attack with grooves and hooks flailing the senses amidst the infernal rampage of riffs and energy, the track is a tempestuous and mouthwatering onslaught, and as contagious as it is disturbingly venomous, the song soon has attention and imagination sealed within its corrosive embrace, both eager to fall deeper into the roaring invention and malevolence.

     The unpredictability and imagination of the first song is replicated by next up Award Winning Bastard, a distinct character with more sonic voracity than its predecessor but equally as captivating and incendiary upon the senses. You almost feel synapses and emotions withering within the tracks scorching sonic persuasion and rhythmic pummelling, but with another irresistible distraction from the band’s adventure and ingenuity only instinctive hunger prevails under the avalanche of sound. For something so vicious and brutal it is hard to believe the contagion of the songs is so virulent but it is and just as impressively repeated in the following Monarch Of Sin. Standing tall and muscular from its first seconds of rhythmic provocation and corruptive riffery, the song takes a less forceful approach in comparison to previous tracks but is just as dramatic in its enticement. A smouldering melodically fuelled acidic casting is aligned to a cleaner vocal delivery, the union almost Killing Joke like at times, and sandwiched between a heavily weighted predatory stalking brought by the bruising intensity and ravenous metal ferocity. The song is a savage and ruinous yet bewitching encounter, a temptation elevated by the Converge like fury of group vocals at the song’s finale; it and track a glorious tempest.

    Committed rages next and features John Sutcliffe from Humanfly within its scintillating exploits. From the first rapacious swagger and torrent of guitar invention the track secures greedy attention which it’s subsequent rampant riffing and transfixing rhythmic antagonism, not forgetting brawling vocal combination. The song swings and lurches from one explosive and thrilling point to another, infection and toxic animosity unrelentingly igniting it’s too brief but outstanding presence. The best track on the release, amongst only major triumphs, the song gives a big test for the closing Audio Porn to live up to. Raw and abrasive within an evocative melodic crafted enterprise, the song easily rises to the challenge providing release and listener with another individually startling expanse of inventive vehemence and exhausting adventure. It is a mighty intrusive end to a severe and masterful incitement for ears and passions. Influences for the band are cited as bands such as Black Sabbath, Metallica, Pantera, Mastodon, and Gojira , a list you suspect the name Canaya will eventually be added to as an inspiration for others. They and Sealed Within The Walls are right now collisions you simply need to stand in front of to bend and bask within.

www.facebook.com/canayauk

www.canaya.bandcamp.com

9/10

Ringmaster 15/02/2014

 Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Tracings of time and reflections: an interview with Black Space Riders

Black Space Riders 1

German heavy rockers Black Space Riders is a band which has persistently drawn acclaim and attention with their unique and ravenously adventurous sounds but it is fair to say that new album D:REI is their finest moment. A journey of progressively sculpted metal and psychedelically forged rock through a dramatic narrative, the bands third full-length is a compelling incitement for the imaginations and passions. We grabbed the chance to find out more with JE and Seb from the band, touching on origins, albums, and much more…

Hello and thanks for talking with us.

Hello and thank YOU, here are JE (vocals, guitars) and SEB (vocals) from Black Space Riders

For newcomers to the band, please tell us about its beginnings.

JE: Black Space Riders were born in the deepest winter of 2008/09. C.RIP (drums) and I wanted to play Heavy Rock again after some years of making decent songwriter-stuff. I contacted SLI (guitar), an old friend from the schoolyard, we had been doing a NWOBHM-fanzine together when we were teens around 79/80. He brought in SAQ (bass) and we started jamming in an old mouldered bowling alley. It was great from the start. Fantastic musical and social chemistry! We created 4 songs in 2 rehearsals. We recorded our debut in 2010 and played shows while writing material for album No.2, “Light is the new black”, which was released in 2012.

SEB: In 2012 I came across and joined Black Space Riders first as an additional and background singer, then as the 5th member. But I already had known these guys years before.

JE: Now there are 5 Riders, 5 friends, just been releasing album No.3 called D:REI.

What are the musical histories of the band members before Black Space Riders?

JE: All of us have been playing in many bands or projects before. SLI played in Heavy-, Punk- and Indie-Bands since the Eighties. SAQ had a couple of Punk Rock bands before but also played in Indie-Rock-Bands, SEB used to sing in Metal bands but also has a great experience in playing accordion and singing weird, folkloristic Chanson-Stuff together with C.RIP who played and plays every imaginable musical style from Jazz over Metal to Ska. I also played in a lot of bands since 1980. Metal, Rock, Wave, Punk, Indie, Folk, Jazz … I played and sung for a long time in a Crossover band with C.RIP, which gained a decent regional/national awareness in the Nineties.

What was the spark or initial intent within the band when you started out?Black Space Riders 3

JE: As said, to create something loud and wild after years of “decent” music and to take up the Heavy stuff that we all are loving since our youth. The idea was to jam around and to create a hypnotic wall of sound … there were no ideas of releasing albums in the beginning

The band’s name stands out and suggests a space ranger like almost comic book appeal. What inspired the band name?

JE: Exactly what you have read in the name. 60ies and 70ies Sci-Fi had a very strong influence on me. I read a lot of those books when I was a child, my uncle had hundreds of them. We were looking for a name which can instantly create cartoonish, dark, hypnotic, psychedelic and cool images.

How would you say your sound has evolved since the early days and your self-titled debut album to what we thrillingly hear on new release D:REI?

JE: This time when we entered the recording studio we knew even better what we wanted and what we did NOT want. As for the sound of the recording itself: we wanted to retain the warmth, the organic live-feeling and the bottom of the first two albums but wanted to add additional freshness, transparency and openness to our existing drive. So – for example – we have been discussing a lot about the amount of “attack” in the drum sound or about guitar amps  and how to record the guitars with our friend and engineer Role (“die Tonmeisterei”) before entering the studio. Stylistically we allowed ourselves to integrate more elements and accepted the eclectic result of our songwriting without sorting out parts, grooves or ideas that sounded a little bit far out in the beginning.

As you said earlier D:REI is your third album; for us an exceptional progressively sculpted metal and rock adventure which can seduce and prey on the senses at any given moment. Did the album end up exactly how you envisaged it or did it have some surprises in store for even you guys as it evolved and emerged?

SEB: There are, in fact, some positive surprises for us. Partial tiny, audiophile little things – but also relevant structural changes we have made during the recordings.

JE: There are always surprises in the studio. The songs and arrangements are final before entering the studio, but then you begin experimenting with sounds or somebody within the band or let´s say our engineer Role has a charming “new” idea and – oooops –you find yourself changing the master plan. We are a live-recording band, old-school, five friends and all their instruments and amps in ONE room … but sometimes  we are adding some decent flavours later … experimenting with dozens of effect-pedals and creating some “space” can be so inspiring almost addictive! We are also experimenting with our vocal expression while recording, encouraging and coaching each other.

1545083_10151894936042963_1727001018_nThe album is split into ‘chapters’ exploring a…actually could you tell and expand on the theme behind the album for us please?

SEB: A new life in a new world? The depths and abysses of the human soul? Find out for yourself !

JE: On the first look a post-apocalyptic plot of destruction, escape, voyage and looking back. But maybe it´s all just in your head and it´s all about inner liberation and freedom?! The listener is defining the meaning of the story. My advice: Take a look at the story and the lyrics (you will find them here: www.blackspaceriders.com/d-rei), then put on your headphones, lights out, volume up and find it out!

Did the lyrical aspect or idea of the album come first or the music?

SEB: We had framework for about the half of the songs when JE delighted us with his concept of “Total destruction as the root of a new beginning and the Journey as a transformation”. From this point concept and music were evolved in parallel.

JE: Music first, basic concept next, lyrics last.

How does the writing process work within Black Space Riders?

SEB: On the way from our debut album Black Space Riders to D:REI we have expanded  the common songwriting.

JE: The process of songwriting has changed over the years. In the beginning I brought in almost finished songs and structures. Today it´s “just“ a riff or some harmonies, somebody picks it up, we start jamming and then we love it or we don´t. At one point SEB and me are starting to hum or sing. We are recording every rehearsal, every jam and are listening to it before the next rehearsal. We then discuss about it and try out different grooves, tempi, atmospheres, sounds. Our drummer C.RIP is playing a big part in arranging songs and developing structures…So the “song” as you know it from the album, is a common work of several band members.

Being a concept album did you approach the writing of D:REI any differently to say previous album Light Is The New Black?

JE: Not really. Light is the new black was considered by many to be a concept album as well. But D:REI seems to be so perfectly balanced and cohering, both musically and lyrically. To be honest: that is a happy ending and not a result of a worked out master plan. We have changed the sequence of the songs several times to find the perfect flow through the whole album … so we had to fiddle around with song titles and lyrics in the last moment during the recordings.

What did you take into the recording of D:REI in particular which you learnt on previous releases to enhance or ease its emergence in the studio?

JE: As said above … a clearer vision about the desired sound, recording techniques, approach and modus operandi. Additionally a greater open-mindedness, a grown faith, trust and friendship within the band and with our engineer/producer … relaxation and a strong belief that this album was going to become something special.

With a concept album is there a more demanding and intensive focus needed to link music and the expanding lyrical story of the narrative or does it pretty much come together as any other album?

SEB: I find it even a little easier because I had a specific movie in my head since the said date.

And is another concept album a possibility for future releases or maybe with the next will you return to individual standalone songs?

SEB: Anything can be, nothing must be.

JE: … all is possible. No plans, no expectations, no disappointments ;)

Have you shows/tour in the works to support D:REI, and if so will you be rampaging around Europe, the UK maybe?Black Space Riders 2

JE: Yes we have played some release-shows in some of the bigger German cities and are working on more shows and festival-slots in 2014. We are doing all this on our own. We have a distro and some professional help in the background, but in order to keep our independency and all rights… no label-contract! So most of the work, organization and booking is up to us. Additionally we all have families and jobs. It seems as though our new album, D:REI, will be received very well, so with that kind of “tailwind” we are starting now to book more shows for 2014 and will hopefully be able to play some festivals in the summer as well. Would love to play some shows in the UK, but we don´t have an “official” distro or label in the UK … so I guess we have to wait for some nice offers to play the UK.

Rightly or wrongly I have the assumption that you are a band which never stops writing or working on ideas, if correct how far are you into writing album 4? ;)

SEB: Honestly we have just a few ideas or fragments, because we were very busy with the preparation of our release-shows. But the prickling is already there and I’m looking forward to the upcoming rehearsals.

 Once again many thanks for sharing time with us, any last thoughts to leave us with?

JE: If you like what we are doing … tell the world about it! Spread the word! May the force be with you!

And lastly what are our biggest inspirations not so much for Black Space Riders but just as musicians?

JE: Of course each of us has different inspirations that is why we sound like we sound. On the other hand we have a lot of common preferences – and again – that is why we sound like we sound. Band-favourites are e.g. Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, NWOBHM, The Chameleons, Motorhead, Monster Magnet, Alice in Chains, Massive Attack … many more. For me personally on top of those: Psychedelia like on the early Pink Floyd –Albums. 80ies Dark Wave like Bauhaus or Joy Division and the BIG three: David Bowie, Tom Waits and Johnny Cash.

Read the D:REI review @ http://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/01/23/black-space-riders-drei/

http://www.blackspaceriders.com

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 12/02/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

 

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Black Space Riders – D:REI

 

 Black Space Riders official 2014

   A spatial exploration of progressively sculpted metal and psychedelically forged rock merged with varied additives into thirteen rugged landscapes, D:REI is a compelling incitement for the imagination and fuel for the passions. Consisting of strikingly varied and ravenously adventurous tracks, the third album from German heavy rockers Black Space Riders is one of those treats you just cannot exhaust your hunger for. Our first encounter with the band, D:REI is an exceptional triumph sure to also invite an intensive retrospective investigation of the band.

     Formed in 2008, the Münster hailing band immediately triggered acclaim and attention with their self-titled album two years later. A quartet consisting of JE (lead vocals, guitars), SLI (guitars), SAQ (bass), and CRIP (drums, vocals), Black Space Riders hit European stages to reinforce their presence and rising stature in support of their feverishly received record. 2012 saw second album Light Is The New Black unleashed, again with strong support and praise soaking the even more adventurous and sound diverse release. As the year merged into the next, a second lead vocalist, SEB who had already provided additional background-vocals on the album was recruited into the band. Now Black Space Riders look poised to thrust themselves further into the devouring passions of the wider metal and heavy rock world with D:REI. It is an encounter which is impressive with either predatory aggressiveness or wanton seduction, merging both more often than not; the ignition to a greedy appetite for the invigorating and scintillatingly unique provocation.

     The album is a concept styled encounter: a journey from impending doom through devastation on to a voyage to a new 13_10_17 lp_sleeve.inddunknown adventure though that is simplifying it. The tracks are split into chapters within the exploration starting with D – Defiance moving on to R – Ruins and E – Escape through to I – Beyond. It is an encounter which sparks the imagination and the inventiveness of thoughts as well as providing a musical soundscape which evokes the passions. From the opening track Stare at the Water the album simply captivates with an unrelenting but continually riveting tempest of sound and sonic design. A slowly unveiling landscape is revealed by the start of the first song initially, an entrancing ambience aided by a singular guitar. Two minutes in it is dispersed by a stormy cloud of rigorous riffs and muscle clad rhythms soon joined by vocals and flames of inventive guitar. A mix of heavy metal and stoner dressed endeavour, the track stomps with intensity and formidable craft to lure and intimidate in equal measure. It is a potent opening to the album though not quite lighting the fuse to the passions.

    That match is lit by the following sizeable triumphs starting with Bang Boom War (Outside my Head). A sonic hostility opens up the gateway to a carnivorously toned bassline and rapacious rhythms within a whining acidic grazing of guitar. It is tremendous bait enhanced by the excellent dual vocal attack and an industrial seeded yawn of guitars and predatory stalking, a presence which merges essences of Fear Factory and Marilyn Mansion with a Sabbathesque doom bred intensity. As the album shows across its length, the song is an evolving and unpredictable beast of an incitement, a spine of rhythms the only constant to which ravenous yet seducing weaves of imagination and sound avail their temptation.

    Rising from the Ashes of our World comes next and compared to other songs takes longer to fully persuade though as soon as its stalking rhythms and heavily laden riffs seize the ears, attention and appetite are certainly heading in only one direction. Thoughts of Prong enter the mind initially but the track is soon going deeper and into darker places with its intensive weight and abrasively toned riff rabidity. The slower dare one say mellower moments of the song surprise and intrigue if without raising the same appetite as the voraciousness around them but it just accentuates the power of the sinews driving the song and the irresistible climax, a pestilential finale which savages and thrills insatiably.

    Both Give Gravitation to the People and Way to Me take the album to another level, the first a festering scourge of caustic metal with an agitated rhythmic teasing. Primarily invasive heavy unrelenting metal with a touch of early Therapy? seemingly thrown in, it is a hypnotic scourge on the senses with a melodic mystique whispering in its atmosphere whilst its successor is a dance of groove metal and grunge sculpted by again contagious rhythms and that continually irresistible snarling bass. The track swings its muscular hips and heavy handed rhythmic infectiousness with a swagger which only recruits the fullest allegiance to its call. With a progressive flair and imagination to the guitars and their melodic weaves, the song is pure magnetism.

     Through the insistent fire bred stoner heat of Temper is Rising, the classically cast heavy metal suasion of The GOD-survivor, and the smouldering I see the album continues to draw the emotions in deeper even though the last two of the trio simply please rather than fire up any intense reactions. That is left to the exceptional Leave to produce, its opening Middle Eastern kissed flavouring the coaxing leading into an ever expanding flight through incendiary climes and melodic ingenuity. It is a masterful evocation of sound and emotional narrative not forgetting pungent adventure.

    From here on in the album provides more taxing moments, infection wise if still ones making the strongest persuasion. Space Angel (Memitim) is a ten minute musical painting which is excellently crafted and imaginatively coloured but arguably over long whilst Major Tom Waits, with its great gravel clad vocals strikes a union with thoughts but misses out on sparking up the passions. The final pair of offerings though from the almost punk swung rocker Letter to a Young One and the doom flavoured furnace of stoner tempting and heavy riffery, The Everlasting Circle of Infinity provide an addictively exciting conclusion to the release.

    With just a couple of lulls come sparkless moments, D:REI is a richly rewarding, ear feasting slab of metallically framed space/melodic rock with plenty more besides, and Black Space Riders a new pleasure, certainly for us, to greedily indulge in.

http://www.blackspaceriders.com

9/10

RingMaster 23/01/2014

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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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Left For Red – Vol 002: Mercy Fight

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Being a sucker for riffs which prey on the ear and rhythmic encounters which rumble with an anthemic lure, it took little time for Vol 002: Mercy Fight, the new EP from UK rockers Left For Red to grip attention tightly as its opening track stomped into view. Proceeding to entice and captivate the imagination as it blasts through three heavyweight provocations, the band continues to impress and raise suspicions that with the promise flowing through the release they have the potential to be very formidable antagonists within UK metal. Still arguably searching for originality, Left For Red make a sinew driven declaration with their second EP which cannot be ignored or left alone.

Formed in 2010, the Stourbridge quintet merged early influences of Black Sabbath and Judas Priest into newer discoveries of bands such as Strapping Young Lad, Tool, and Deftones as their own take on heavyweight metal emerged. The five-piece soon grew a strong reputation and following for their live performances, which was only enhanced by the release of their debut EP, Vol 001 – Empty Shell. The band since starting has shared stages with the likes of Beholder and Breed 77, supported Chimaira and Revoker on their Age Of Hell Tour, as well as undertaking their own successful shows including headlining a sold out gig at the 02 Academy. Recently crowned winners of Kerrang!’s TNA competition Left For Red is on a sturdy ascent, one which Vol 002: Mercy Fight will only add extra fuel to.

As soon as the forcefully beckoning drums beats of Rob Hadley probe the ears it has to be said that opener Kneel Before You Left-For-Red-Vol-002-Mercy-FlightDie is halfway to recruiting a hungry response. Once the gnarled bass tones conjured by Dan Carter and carnal guitar riffs also add their intimidation a major appetite is awoken as passions begin to stir for what is on offer. It is a primal start, one pinpointing and exploiting the rhythmic savage in us, and irresistible lead into the equally rapacious expanse of hungry riffs and melody soaked enterprise which erupts from its temptation. Into full stride the song is an accomplished and magnetic blaze of endeavour, the vocals of LC a firm and expressive antagonist around which the riffs and invention of guitarists Aaron Foy and Phil Smith carve and paint a skilled and pleasing adventure, even if there is nothing dramatically original to the event cast. Despite that it is an impressive and increasingly contagious start which leaves a healthy appetite for what is to follow.

My Obsession enters on a weighty carnivorous prowl from the bass skirted by sonic ambience, a presence soon enveloped in a cage of rhythmic predation and brewing intensity. With an air of doom and foreboding to its breath, the track slowly stalks the ears; circling them with preying riffs alongside the emotive narrative provided by LC. All the while though it is brewing a web of virulent temptation which shows its face in the chorus and evolving grooves. There is an undefined familiarity to the incitement though there are moments where Breed 77 comes forcibly to mind to add extra spice to the already delicious recipe. It is a magnificent song making its predecessor look slightly pale in comparison.

The closing Mercy Flight breeds from the success of the second track to unleash a perfectly crafted fury of rampaging riffs and rhythms clad together in a brawl of ferocious energy and rapaciousness. Again there is something recognisable to the song especially when it opens its melodic rock arms, though even then the track is eating your children and having it away with the wife. It is a tantalising conclusion to a compelling release, an EP which is not bothering boundaries yet or setting truly unique marks down for the band but one to thrust them onto the radar of newcomers and confirm the suspicions of something special evolving as seeded in the previous EP.

Left For Red has some way to go to stand out from the crowd but on the evidence of Vol 002: Mercy Fight it is certainly on their horizon which can only be an impending treat for us all.

http://leftforred.co.uk/

8/10

RingMaster 09/12/2013

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Sons of Huns – Banishment Ritual

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Riff clad and groove shoed, Banishment Ritual is one of those albums which is so hard to tear yourself away from once it has its eager and rapacious hooks deeply entrenched within the ears and passions. Sculpted by Oregon trio Sons of Huns, the eleven track release is as virulently contagious and thrillingly magnetic as any stoner/heavy metal confrontation to come along over recent months and though its originality can be argued and debated the album is a ridiculously easy to devour magnetic treat. Since 2009, The Portland band has been firing up and building a keen and potent home fanbase since forming but now with the release via EasyRider Records of the riotous Banishment Ritual, expectations are simply rife with the expectation that the band will soon be recognised and cooed much further afield.

Consisting of guitarist/vocalist Peter Hughes, drummer Ryan Northrop, and bassist/vocalist Shoki Tanabe (who has recently departed the band to be replaced as touring bassist by Aaron Powell of Belt of Vapor), Sons of Huns has already earned a major reputation for their live performances which has seen them grace numerous Portland festivals and stages supporting the likes of Red Fang, Andrew W.K., Danava, and also comedian Brian Posehn. The band’s 2011 self-titled EP drew potent acclaim as did the 7” single Leaving Your Body, but you feel as debut album Banishment Ritual stomps and ravages through the ears like a sonic terrier on heat that everything before was mere foreplay for the real thing.

The title track opens up the storming exercise in persistent dramatic riffery and rhythmic entrapment with an eager swagger and Cover Artfiery breath if not the rabidity and aggressive attention grabbing shown in later tracks. A warm blues squall wraps the guitar enterprise whilst the vocals have a strength and expression which matches the sonic intensity and melodic tantalising veining the track. It is a compelling accomplished start which lays down the appealing canvas for greater things to play upon starting with the following Argenteum Astrum.

The second track is a delicious flame of sci-fi inspired adrenaline coaxed stoner rock ‘n’ roll, a merger of Motorhead and Red Fang with the sinews of Black Tusk rippling throughout its contagious charge. The band is equally unafraid to twist and shift things around within the charge, a slow melodic croon teasing the senses midway in for a mesmeric enticement that tempers and compliments the sturdy riffery and thumping rhythms. It is the first of a few pinnacles closely followed by the mighty seduction of Heliolith, a track where grooves entice places which should never be felt up in public and riffs cage thoughts of escape with resourcefulness and irresistible addictiveness.

The dual assault of Horror In Clay and I’m Your Dad bring the album to another peak, the first with a blues crafted energy and rampancy which flirts with the passions through evolving gaits and inquiring sonic imagination whilst its successor, the best track on the album is pure undiluted bruising rock ‘n’ roll. Part early Queens Of The Stone Age and part Black Sabbath with a spattering of Trucker Diablo, the song emerges as a unique and exhilarating blaze of voracious enterprise to ignite a greater rabidity to the already spawned hunger for the album.

Following the decent but out of place amongst the other tracks instrumental Waking Sleep, Sons of Huns unleashes another incendiary device for the passions with the intensive infection of Planet No. 9, another track where grooves are as epidemically inciting as the riffs and rhythmic confrontation. With strong vocal harmonies to aid the always enjoyable delivery of Hughes and Tanabe, the track storms the barricades with charm and insatiable energy aligned to aggressive endeavour and addiction forging adventure. Seriously challenging for best song on Banishment Ritual it gives a tall order for the rest of the album to live up to.

Both the smouldering lure of Lord of Illusion and the garage rock escapade of instrumental Rollin’ the Dice make a fine if unsuccessful attempt, the pair as many of the tracks breeding a psychedelic air to their stoner and blues emissions, whilst Super Kanpai Rainbow steps up to the plate with an impossibly infectious temptation of garage punk and metal merged into a psychedelic psyche taunting with sonic colour as vibrant and transfixing as the imagination spawning its intriguing and thrilling offering.

Completed by final stoneresque fire of Oroboros, The Sword meets Led Zeppelin to give a whiff of its heat, Banishment Ritual is an outstanding release which makes a stronger persuasion with every encounter.  Maybe not strong on originality but towering in every other aspect, it is an outstanding full length debut placing Sons of Huns towards the frontline of stoner/blues metal.

http://sonsofhuns.com/

8.5/10

RingMaster 03/12/2013

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