Pigeon Lake – Tales of a Madman

  Linn Wold Design


Linn Wold Design

A couple of months back Norwegian band Pigeon Lake unleashed the single Confrontation as a teaser and awakening to their debut album Tales of a Madman. It was a track which held all the already impressing essences and invention of the band as shown on their first release, the I: Mindrape EP, but hinted at a new individuality of sound and even greater emotional and textural explorations. The track was riveting as it thrilled ears and imagination but now showing as just an appetiser for the might and creative weight of the new album. Tales of a Madman is a beast of an encounter, a stirring and invigorating incitement which shows that Pigeon Lake has come of age and is ready to embrace the strongest intensive spotlight.

Formed in 2011 and hailing from Oslo, Pigeon Lake consists of vocalist/guitarist Christopher Schackt, lead guitarist Magnus Engemoen, bassist Anders Børresen, and drummer Andreas Prestby. The quartet has from day one created a web of intrigue and attention grabbing sound from merging a melodic and imposing blend of rock with a predatory metal confrontation. The result is a proposition which demands senses and thoughts pay attention before taking them on an enthralling and breath-taking, at times uncompromising, creative journey. The I: Mindrape EP of 2012 brought the band’s first rich mark on the psyche and passions; its success not the trigger to wide spread recognition but certainly an awakening of an awareness of the band which the new album we suspect will ignite.

Whereas the EP had irrepressible songs built on swinging grooves which could be referenced to the likes of Pantera and Volbeat in many ways, Tales of a Madman sees the band diving into the darkest corners and depths of emotions and imagination. Shadows smother the senses across the release, emotions soaking thoughts with strains of despair, fear, and predominantly melancholic evocation, yet rather than breed a depressed atmosphere which only devours the listener, the band sculpt and vein songs with an incendiary and sometimes deranged bait of hooks, grooves, and rhythmic contagion. It is a compelling and ingenious mixture which compliments its theme with intensive dramas and aggressive twists.

The album opens with the instrumental Event Horizon, a melodically elegant and captivating piece of composing which instantly draws in the imagination. Around the magnetic coaxing a dark ambience busies itself, offering a lure which is as inescapable and ominous as its title suggests. With rhythms adding their heavier enticement aided by a growing intensity of the guitars, a foreboding joins the flight of the track as it heads into the impending narrative of Epiphany. The second song also casts a caress of sonic temptation initially, though this time there is an instant edge to its charm which is soon aligned to firm beats and abrasing riffs. Antagonistic grooves break out quickly after, their lure courted by more pungent rhythms from Prestby and a throaty malevolent tone from the bass of Børresen. It is a swiftly gripping proposition which takes another lift with the distinct vocal expression of Schackt. As with the sounds the band crafts, there is an adventure and uniqueness to the voice of the man which is unafraid to test its limits whilst bringing open diversity to his delivery as it reveals every ounce of the passion and pain within the heart of lyrics and songs. The track itself writhes and twists creatively across its body with an almost maniacal intent, every swing of rhythms and lacing of sonic persuasion intimidatingly restless but rigorously seductive. It is a stunning step into the thick imposing realm of the release which is instantly matched by the current single.

Confrontation strides in on a voracious rhythmic enterprise which is ridden firmly by the fine vocals of Schackt. An anthemic baiting is right away in command of ears and emotions which the guitars colour and expand with their resourceful and ever shifting tempestuous invention. Angst fuelled harmonies bring their rich hues to the emerging maelstrom of emotion and agitated sound too, anger and despondency entangled with a romantic rage vocally to match the turbulent and thoroughly absorbing storm of sound around them. As impressive as their first release was, this song alone reveals in a short breath just how much the band has grown in their songwriting, creative maturity, and simply ravenous invention.

The smouldering emotive landscape of Doubt comes next, its scenery a melodic wash of shimmering passion and turmoil which erupts with soaring flames of vocal melancholia and sonic causticity. It is a glorious provocation for thoughts and feelings, essences of Katatonia and Tool spicing up the uniqueness of sound and imagination. The song is impossibly mesmeric and immersive but equally menacing through its tar like sludge bred intensity, a union of extremes which you wonder whether many bands could unite as sensationally and potently as Pigeon Lake.

Both Vengeance and Discrepency take their weighty share of the passions with distinctly different investigations, the first from a seducing if also imposing entrance, sending ears down a passage of forcefully jabbing rhythms and snarling riffery courted by raw vocals. It is a song which reeks of danger and destructive intent. The album is into the core of the mental disintegration of its protagonist you feel at this point, every melodic hug accompanied by a bestial savagery and every exotic twist of invention aligned to a malevolent stalking. It is impossible to pick out a pinnacle on the album but the exceptional track is certainly the most vocal re-emerging incitement in thoughts and memory with an unhinged air to every flirtatious and inhospitable turn it takes. Its successor also employs that height of unpredictability and emotive differences throughout its energetically driven swagger and corrosive touch. With a hostile edge to riffs and entrancing magnetism to its melodic beauty, the song is sheer emotional turmoil brought to sonic life and quite brilliant.

The album is completed by the two parts of Absolution. Pt 1. is a sultry escape through a calmer emotional climate but still ripe with blazes of sonic and vocal passion which are in no mood to create a smooth ride for senses and thoughts whilst Pt 2. feels not like a conclusion to the torment of the central character, but a clearer horizon even if one still littered with struggles and conflicts as painted by the roar of guitars and an intensive rhythmic intrigue to the impacting heat of the song.

Rather than a journey for the ‘Madman, the album feels like episodes from an on-going agony and leaves the imagination just as hungrily aflame as the passions. It is an exceptional release which has all the qualities and inventive beauty to push Pigeon Lake deservedly to the frontline of progressive rock and melodic metal. Tales Of A Madman is a release with a sound merging numerous styles and appetites for a mouth-watering presence, one without any reservations which is an album of the year contender.

Tales Of A Madman is self-released on August 15th @ https://pigeonlake.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/PigeonLakeMusic

10/10

Upcoming Pigeon Lake Gigs:

15.08 – Gamla, Oslo – Release party

22.08 – Inside, Bergen

23.08 – Fru Lundgreen, Trondheim

30.08 – Union Scene, Drammen

06.09 – Downbeat, Hønefoss

03.10 – Sebs Hotel, Hamar

RingMaster 10/08/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Fahran – Chasing Hours

Fahran Online Promo Shot

Their second album but our introduction to UK hard rockers Fahran, the band easily gives potent reason to the busy acclaim around them with new album Chasing Hours. Made up of thirteen impressively accomplished and melodically fired tracks, the release awakens a rich intrigue for the quintet. It is not an encounter which manages to ignite a fire in the belly of passions, though it has moments where it takes them on a lustful dance, but certainly from start to finish it sparks and encourages a healthy appetite for the band’s potential and magnetically flavoursome sound.

Fahran was formed in 2012 after emerging from the ashes of Toxic Federation. It was not long before the Breaston five-piece unveiled their self-titled debut album to strong and keen responses from fans and media alike. Infusing inspirations from the likes of Queen, Iron Maiden, Shinedown, Alter Bridge, and Black Stone Cherry into their expressive hard rock sound, the band has also built an attention grabbing reputation with their live performances, which has seen them successfully play the Bloodstock and Download Festivals. Last year saw the departure of bassist Alex Stroud and vocalist Nick Whitcroft but the band swiftly bounced back recruiting Josh Ballantyne and Matt Black on bass and voice respectively, before creating the crowd funded Chasing Hours. With the pair alongside guitarists Jake Graham and Chris Byrne, and drummer JR Windsor, Fahran are poised to wrap up the attention and emotions of the nationwide rock scene with their second album, and it is hard not to imagine the band finding an intensive spotlight upon them from its release.

Chasing Hours is a refreshing treat for all hard and melodic rock fans but even if those genres generally are not the staple diet of ears the band offers plenty within the album to fire up attentive interest. Opening track Long Gone Fahran Cover Artworkinstantly flirts with the imagination through a delicious and slightly melancholic strum of guitar, its tone soon assisted by the darker breath of the bass and resonating swipes of drums. A sonic bred atmosphere rises around the masterful coaxing next to fill senses and thoughts with poetic drama and emotive suggestiveness. It is a fascinating introduction to the song which brews to a greater intensity before parting for equally enticing grooves and rhythmic enterprise to stake their claim on the passions. In no time the track is launching into a feisty and melodic striding of sound and intent which without the potency of that glorious beginning still inspires a highly satisfied and eager reaction.

Straight away the band’s songwriting craft and technical skills are open within the first song, showing a maturity and invention which belies their still young years. These qualities are right away reinforced by the next up Take This City Alive. Equipped with an eighties bred vivacity and infectiousness, the song bounces along with an absorbing weave of sonic endeavour and antagonistic rhythmic aggression. It leaps at the ears and taunts them to embrace the swing and boisterous familiarity of its body, which even with an aversion to its seed era is not easy to refuse. A Thousand Nights is one of those classically fuelled rock songs where again the band do not hide their inspirations as it flames around ears. It does not come up to the same levels of the first couple of tracks but with riveting guitar enterprise and ideation from Graham and Byrne locked within the intimidating rhythmic bait of Windsor, the track offers increasingly inviting bait within melodic rampancy.

Current single I Heard A Joke Once unloads a muscular and sonically alluring proposition with riffs a contagious beckoning across the track. It is a forceful suasion though again, for personal tastes, lacks the spark of the opening pair and many of the subsequent tracks on the album, including the following title track. A sinew sculpted slice of rock balladry with a whiff of country rock and classical seduction to its emotive narrative, Chasing Hours is a smouldering slice of enjoyment which maybe does not set emotions raging but has them simmering very nicely before making way for the boldly pleasing pair of Cased In Steel and You Could Be Mine. The first of the two finds more rugged scenery to soak in earnest vocals and melodies whilst the second is a similarly sturdy with a raw canvas of persuasion coated in evocative sonic hues and the persistently impressing vocals of Black. The song also reminds forcibly that the band really know how to cast enslaving grooves and rhythmic baiting.

As good as those songs and the highlights before them are, they are mere appetisers for the true pinnacles of the album. First up comes the brilliant Some Kind Of Family, a storming stomp of a track which from its first riotous breath also entwines ears in emotionally coloured melodies and sonic adventure to enthral and potently feed the imagination. Hooks and grooves are short yet deeply entrenching whilst Black and band find their most mesmeric vocal strength yet, all within the ever spicy and gripping rhythmic web of Windsor and Ballantyne. Its magnificence is swiftly equalled by Are We Free, a fiery rampage of scorched grooves and menacing beats all honed into a blaze of seductively bruising rock ‘n’ roll with more than an air of Black Stone Cherry and Seether to it. The bass of Ballantyne stalks with predatory instincts across the song for his finest moment but again it is the pleasingly nagging grooves and their irresistible toxicity which seal the deal with a greedy appetite.

Back To Me with its wonderful almost folkish opening suggests it is a rival to the might of the previous pair, guitars and vocals a spellbinding union. But without admittedly losing its hold on attention and satisfaction, it does slip into a more formulaic hard rock offering, though with it continually flirting with those initial lures it finds a ready welcome anytime. Prison is similar in that success, its elegant melodies and emotive hues a transfixing enticing which gives the song its tightest grip on the passions yet the powerful and climactic expulsions, where Black shows his richest delivery in the song, despite making a striking impression still lose the early hold the track had. Nevertheless it is a potent and continually growing proposition but soon left pale against the metallic enticement and melodic rock invention of the outstanding Black Mirror. Another major moment of the release, the song proves the band can merge gentle caresses with raucous intensity for an exhilarating incitement.

Completed by the highly agreeable if underwhelming Storms We Ride, the album is a persistently engaging and rigorously captivating encounter. Chasing Hours has moments where it ebbs and flows in its success, though to be fair that is as much down to personal tastes as anything, but also dramatic moments where Fahran show they have the potential to take UK hard rock to a new world awakening level. It is hard not to be excited about the future of this band.

Chasing Hours is available from Monday 11th August through all digital outlets.

http://www.fahran.com/

8/10

RingMaster 09/08/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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Wovenwar – Self Titled

MainGroupShot_02_byTyWatkins

Pic by Ty Watkins

The events around and causing the imprisonment of As I Lay Dying frontman Tim Lambesis is a well-publicised happening which does not need our commentary. It also left the rest of the band with a major decision. No strangers to success and acclaim, the remaining quartet of guitarists Nick Hipa and Phil Sgrosso, bassist Josh Gilbert, and drummer Jordan Mancino had to decide their next step and thankfully chose with music their life and calling, to strike forward with a new project and what a stunning proposition it has turned out to be. Recruiting lifelong friend and ex-lead guitarist/vocalist of Oh, Sleeper, Shane Blay, the quintet emerged as Wovenwar and has just unleashed a monster of a debut, in their fifteen track self-titled album. Exploring with muscular ferocity and passionate tenacity the melodic metal side of their imagination, the band has created a proposition as distinctly different yet equal in quality and temptation to anything their previous triumphs have unveiled.

Recorded with producer Bill Stevenson (Descendents, Rise Against, NOFX, Black Flag) and mixed by Colin Richardson (Slipknot, Machine Head, Trivium), the album also reaps with sinew driven voracity the rich essences of hard rock to create blazes of sound and enterprise which stand astride genres whilst offering recognisable flames within fresh adventures. On top of that there are the, at times breath-taking and always tantalising vocals of Blay, his clean tones which helped shape his previous band given full expansive rein here to excel and show the strength and weight of the man’s power and craft. It is a magnetic and persistently surprising mesh of sound and ideation which courses the album and immediately awakens attention and appetite through All Rise which follows the opening intro of Foreword. A drama instilled prelude to the creative emprise ahead, the opening track makes for a potent coaxing before the second track explodes with a thumping roll of rhythms, agitated riffs, and a sonic shaping of melodic intent. It is a busy entrance soon enhanced by Blay and the heavy throated predation of the bass. The track is swiftly as anthemic as it is technically bewitching, guitars and drums nimble footed yet leaving heavy impressions with their stormy endeavour.

Death to Rights erupts with similarly intensive and rugged energy and adventure next, jagged riffs and demanding rhythms evolving into scorching weaves of melodic passion and sonic intrigue, though that only hints at the fluid Covermovement and invention within the blistering encounter. As the album, every aspect of the song calls out with invigorated energy and refreshing ideation, raw and almost antagonistic power crowding in with sultry melodies and rapacious infectiousness. It is probably unfair to say the members of the band have found a new lease of life with Wovenwar but certainly there is a freedom and elation to the sound and passion behind it which is as magnetic as the songs themselves.

Through Tempest and The Mason, band and album continue to impress with no restraint. The first of the two finds a carnivorous tone to the bass which alone ignites the passions but also makes a shapely blend of that aggression with an elegant melodically tempering countenance to remind of a more ferocious Sick Puppies. The second of the pair digs into a more furious breath in sound and personality, though the rich tones of Blay never allows the primal intent and fury beneath his vocals to have complete reign with their glorious causticity. The same applies to Moving Up and Sight of Shore, though they are more even tempered naturally with easily pleasing and flawlessly accomplished if less imposingly striking presences compared to previous songs on the album. Each leave a greedy appetite well fed nevertheless before Father Son makes its claim for best track notoriety. The song is simply bewitching, its soothing melodic opening caress over a metronomic lure, irresistible coaxing which increases in temptation as soon as Blay opens up his deliciously mesmeric tones. With keys an evocative ambience over the picturesque narrative of the guitars, and both colourful scenery in a mountain range of epic rhythmic enticement, the track is pure poetry as it leads to its mouth-watering climactic crescendo of a finale.

Profane then thrusts ears into a tempestuous exploit with thunderous rhythms and scathing riffery, the track the rawest and anthemically volatile track on the album yet still holding a seduction which wraps around the aggression and vocal roars which Blay unveils within ever formidable delivery. It is a beast of a track which along with its predecessor puts the likes of Archers and Ruined Ends under pressure to deliver. Neither falls at the hurdle though, the first a voracious blaze of entwining sonic rages, passion drenched vocals, and flavour fuelled melodies whilst its successor is a deeply satisfying mix of abrasing textures and contagious designs ridden by earnest and heated vocal expression.

Things take a bit of a breather with Identity, its well sculpted and unquestionably impressive presence also lacking the spark of those leading up to its moment, though again to be fair there is nothing to leave disappointment a chance to breed. Matter of Time is in its own individual way the same, which offers the suggestion that maybe the album was a couple of songs or so too long but with its compact yet weighty intimidation and stormy air leaving senses and thoughts contented, you feel to omit it and other tracks would be to our real loss.

The album is completed by the acoustically opened Prophets, another spellbinding matching of Blay’s voice and melodic guitar enticing as group harmonies float engagingly over the poetic scenery which works into a climactic landscape of equally thrilling provocation, and lastly the cinematic instrumental Onward which gives the imagination one final flight to immerse in. It enjoyably concludes a scintillating proposition which proves that every cloud has…etc. Though its members are no newcomers to creating inspirational metal, Wovenwar has made a debut which definitely is startling and leaves anticipation for their next step afire, and the passions right now basking.

Wovenwar is available via Metal Blade Records now @ http://www.indiemerch.com/metalbladerecords/band/wovenwar

http://wovenwar.com/about

9/10

RingMaster 08/08/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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Brimstone Coven – Self-Titled

Cover

Psychedelically distilled, the dark occult rock fusion of retro-hard rock and doom which is cast by US band Brimstone Coven is a flight of nostalgia and modern enterprise rolled into one fiery proposition. As openly evidenced by their new self-titled album, it is a sound and incitement which roars and seduces with its sounds but also ebb and flows in strength and persuasion at times, especially if there is no dormant passion and appetite for the genre they explore within their recipient. Yet it is only fair to say even with that obstacle before it, the release makes for a compelling and often rigorously captivating offering which awakens the imagination and flirts with the passions.

The album sees the uniting of second release II and a preceding self-titled EP/album from the West Virginian band which began in 2011 with guitarist Corey Roth, who subsequently brought vocalist “Big John” Williams, bassist Andrew D’Cagna, and drummer Justin Wood into the project; the latter replaced by Dan Hercules until his more recent return. The success of the band’s live presence and their first two releases, led to them signing with Metal Blade Records at the tail of last year going into this. The new unleashing gives their previous encounters a combined and wider canvas to enthral from and it is fair to say that the album does that with consummate ease.

The thumping beats opening up first track Cosmic Communion instantly ensures attention and appetite is rigorously awoken, its instinctive raps swiftly joined by flames of guitar and the potent melodic voice of Williams. It is a strong coaxing which finds a potent vein of magnetism with swinging grooves and sonic weaves of flavoursome enterprise over which group harmonies also impress. The song is soon casting a revelry which is as potent urgently shifting its feet or making a more sultry seduction, each leaving ears and emotions fully engaged. Thoughts of Pentagram and Orange Goblin come to mind in varying degrees as the track makes an invigorating start to the release. Its success is not quite matched by the moodier Behold, the Anunnaki, its air and attitude a darker presence to the more celebratory essence of its predecessor. The bass instantly catches the ear, its heavy shadowed tones even more pronounced and intrigue ridden than in the first song, whilst the excellent vocals again smoulder and soar enjoyably singularly and as a group, bringing an Alice In Chains essence to the narrative and feel of the song. A repetitive prowl of bass and aligning riffs equally makes a rich lure to the track which though definitely lacking the spark of the first, still leaves a contented feeling behind.

The Black Door pushes emotions and pleasure back up to that early plateau with its sinister yet absorbing beauty. Grooves and melodic hooks litter the mesmeric landscape of the song, its paths of again throaty basslines and more monotone kissed vocal enticing just as irresistible as those more openly grabbing lures. It is the best track on the album by far, everything about its invention and body dangerously seductive and hypnotically imposing, like an occult themed episode of seventies TV show Hammer House of Horror. The album never quite repeats the song’s glory again though the likes of the sultry Blood On The Wall and The Grave with its ravenous enticement as well as the slowly crawling Lord & Master give plenty to contemplate and striking rewards in. The second of the trio especially ignites a fresh hunger, its rawer and vivacious stoner lit textures a healthily appetising provocation to which blazes of guitar imagination and sonic rapacity flirt evocatively, whilst its successor is a slow burning tempting which grows and enslaves emotions over time with raw elegance and dramatic sonic poetry leading to a blaze of a finale.

The addictive almost predatory riffing which is soon in place through Vying makes for another inescapable baiting, though the song never manages to quite breed the same depth of potency through the rest of its accomplished ideation and craft. Again though it is a song which leaves a lingering thread of allurement which draws you back into its resourceful grasp, something The Séance is less successful in creating despite its presence making for a pleasing if quite quickly forgotten encounter, especially with the intensive weight and atmosphere of The Folly of Faust coming soon after, its thick smothering air a tempestuous spark to the imagination.

The remainder of the album is made up by Brimstone Coven’s first release, a heavier and darker toned collection of songs thanks to their raw recordings and production, but also tracks which just do not have the same spark and life as those before them. It is easy to see why that first EP drew strong attention though with tracks like We Are Forever with its smoky blues atmosphere and the more classic metal hued The Ancients showing all the potential exploited better in the following album. With Son of the Morning making the most potent impression of the remaining songs, the whole album is a fascinating proposition, a journey back to previous eras but finding plenty to awaken a modern palate, even those with a less keen appetite for those older times.

Brimstone Coven has the potential to make a major statement ahead taking their album as suggestive evidence, its persistently convincing presence increasingly persuasive as it immerses ears and thoughts.

Brimstone Coven is available now via Metal Blade Records @ http://www.metalblade.com/brimstonecoven/

http://www.brimstonecoven.com/

8/10

RingMaster 06/08/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Khaøs – After The Silence

Khaos Band 5 (9365 copy4)

Almost two years after the release of their critically acclaimed debut EP Rising, and ahead of new album Risen, Swiss/American melodic/hard rock band Khaøs unveil new single After The Silence. Pushing their accomplished blend of sinew sculpted rock and metal to new evocative expression, the single is a potent and intriguing teaser for the band’s first full-length. It is not a proposition which lit a fire in our belly but definitely offered enough to breed an inquisitive nature for the album.

Consisting of vocalist Chandler Mogel, guitarist Mark Rossi, bassist Nic Angileri, and drummer Trevor Franklin, the band is making its introduction to our ears with their new single, a track which admittedly initially wrong foots expectations and what they were assuming to hear from a name like Khaøs. There is certainly a raw beauty to the Rolf Munkes recorded song but not the aggressive bleakness certainly in sound expected to accost ears. Lyrically the track embraces the premise of “finding one’s self in a war-torn world and bonding together with like-minded people in order to start a peaceful revolution.” This brings cloudy shadows and fiery tension to the heart of the track, a potency which grips attention as much as the equally heated sounds crafted by the band and adds much to the thought evoking presence of the release.

The song opens with a lone guitar casting its evocative narrative around ears before welcoming a slow pulse of rhythms and the shadowed tones of the bass. It is a strong coaxing added to by the fine vocals of Mogel assisted by similarly After the Silence Cover Singleimpressive harmonies. With flames of intensity and melodic endeavour throughout the provocative canvas of the song, it swirls emotionally and creatively across the senses with resourceful imagination and tenacious passion, the guitar of Rossi especially engrossing when given clear scenery to colour.

For personal preferences, After The Silence fails to find the spark which ignites a hungry appetite and over enthused reactions, but as mentioned does have a certain success in raising an interest in the new album. For fans of Khaøs and of imposing passion drenched hard rock, the single with its skilled design and flavour is sure to make Risen a highly anticipated and excitedly awaited proposition.

After The Silence is available via MRRecords digitally worldwide through iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and on all other digital platforms.

www.facebook.com/khaos2012

7/10

RingMaster 14/07/2014

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The Delta Rhythm – Break The Surface EP

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It seems blues rock is alive and blushingly well in Birmingham, and that is down to UK band The Delta Rhythm. The proof comes with their new three-track EP Break The Surface, a release which provides a satisfaction and captivation which is as lingering as it is refreshing. Combining the rich essences of Americana, blues, indie, and hard rock into a sound which is not dramatically unique but still able to stand distinctly tall within any emerging crowd of bands, The Delta Rhythm is a proposition drenched in potential and skilled craft which it is hard not to anticipate even greater things from.

Formed in the first weeks of 2012 and taking inspirations from the likes of Canned Heat, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Oasis, Led Zeppelin, Metallica, The Sword, and Clutch, the band was soon supporting bands like Pint Shot Riot at Birmingham’s 02 Academy 3 and subsequently lighting up festivals like the Lightwoods Park May Day Festival in Birmingham which saw the band perform before a 10,000 strong crowd. Now consisting of vocalist/pianist Sami Cornick, guitarist Gregg Freeman, bassist Ben Adams, and drummer Martyn Todd, The Delta Rhythm’s new EP follows the well-received Rebels Redemption and The Rain Will Take Us All EPs, pushing the band to a new level which you would suspect leads to nationwide attention.

The release opens with Ticking Bomb, the song in turn starting with a singular gentle scrub of guitar before being joined by crisp Break The Surface EP Coverrhythms and soon after the throaty bass of Adams and the fine vocals of Cornick, her voice an instant draw. The song strolls keenly once established, guitars and rhythms an easy accessible bait upon which blues/country rock melodies and enterprise colours ears and imagination. The production has Cornick to the fore which depletes some of the potency of the music around her but such her obvious power and vocal talent it is hard to raise any real complaints. Across its body, the song continues to sway and twist with appealing guitar designs and excellent vocal harmonies, never erupting to the heights expected but worming deeper into the psyche and emotions to be just as potently effective.

The following Singing The Blues opens with a strum of guitar chords which is vintage rock ‘n’ roll, a moment which could fit any song from Eddie Cochran to Johnny Cash or Free to Jack White and sets the track off in fine style. There is a swing and swagger to the song which recruits feet and passions right away, an enslavement only strengthened by the undemanding melodies and anthemic rhythms. Once again though it is the vocals of Cornick which seal the deal and you sense she still has plenty in reserve if required. Her keys also bring a flavoursome hue and expression to the excellent song before it makes way for the similarly impressive Better Things, another easy blaze of blues rock but with a stoner caress and hard rock vivacity. As its predecessors, the song is pure infectiousness, not a song to inspire a riot but an encounter with plenty of seduction to get its way.

It is a strong and appealing conclusion to a similarly impressing release. Certainly the production is good but it does prioritise Cornick and inspires a slight niggle about the subservience of the music. You at times just wish it would catch fire, find a spark to give it more of a snarl. It is almost as if the music is laying a base for the excellent vocals rather than embracing them on mutual terms but this is a band in progress and you can easily feel this will all come good eventually. Even if not, when a proposition is this enjoyable it is impossible to be dissatisfied in any real size or form. Watch out for The Delta Rhythm, they have the wares and skills to make a big name for themselves.

The Break The Surface EP is available now from www.facebook.com/deltarhythm

www.twitter.com/thedeltarhythm

8/10

RingMaster 13/06/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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On Top – Top To Bottom

on top

The Top To Bottom EP is the return of US rockers On Top and it is fair to say that they are not only back in full riotous form but coming equipped with a tastier potent sound than ever before. Three years ago the band released their attention grabbing debut album Top Heavy, an acclaimed and thoroughly enjoyable release marking the hard rock scene’s cards. It was not an encounter which lit blazing fires in our personal hunger but certainly kept a keen appetite on standby. The new release is another matter which though it still does not push the Philadelphia trio into being an essential part of our heavy rock menu, is destined to become a regular aperitif.

Formed in 2008 by vocalist/bassist Jaron Gulino(ex-Trasher, BSOM, Capitalist Death Machine, and Midnite Hellion), On Top soon had a demo recorded with session musicians Brian Davis (guitar) and John Norcorss (drums), Another Night of Sleaze swiftly pleasing newly recruited fans. The band’s first official line-up followed soon after and saw the addition of drummer Danny Piselli (Fisthammer, ex-Vulcan, ex-Coffin Dust) into the personnel. The following year saw a line-up shift occur before the quartet recorded the self-titled six-track EP in 2010. Further line-up disruptions caused the band to take a brief hiatus before mid-2011 Gulino and Piselli returned with of guitarist Alex Kulick (ex-Striker) alongside. Top Heavy was uncaged in the November of that year via Horror Pain Gore Death Productions, its release thrusting the band into a new spotlight as well as shows and tours which reinforced their energetic reputation on stage. Now with guitarist Brian Davis linking up with Gulino and Piselli, On Top come forth again to reveal a new maturity and endeavour to the songwriting and sound, as well as a stronger punk rock essence adding to the bands richer and captivatingly contagious bait.

Mixed and mastered by Chris “The Wizard” Collier (KXM, Lynch Mob), Top To Bottom swaggers into focus on a deliciously toxic bassline, frontcovera wantonness right away teasing ears from No Shame which is taken up to greater effect by the fiery strides of guitars and crisp beats. Into full stride the song is instantly anthemic to which the Zack de la Rocha like tones of Gulino brings a raw and appealing antagonistic edge. Davis is just as swift in impressing with his sonic and melodic endeavour, riffs and grooves all rich in colour and creative energy, as are the swiping rhythms of Piselli and the continually grouchy bass of Gulino. The song is certainly not pushing into new fields for hard rock but undoubtedly giving it a new infection of energy and enterprise which hits the right spot.

The following Cold And Blue is equally a familiar but refreshing protagonist, riffs grazing with pleasing causticity and vocals bringing again a great punk rawness to the contagious presence of the song. A relaxation of energy mid-way loses some of the impetus of the track though it provides a strong canvas for the excellent bass and guitar hues to paint a captivating narrative before the song returns to its feisty and infectious stomp.

Don’t Go makes the best entrance of all the songs, once more the heavy dark resonance and growl of the bass enslaving ears as haunting crystalline scythes of guitar vigorously shimmer across the potent enticement. It is a mere breath though before grooves and melodic flames expel their imaginative fire across the enveloping dramatic landscape of punk and heavy metal with rich strains of blues rock. There is a beefier intensity and ferocity to the song than on the others, a hunger which does not lose any of the virulence drafted on its predecessors as it brings a predation to its attack which fully captivates as it takes best track moment.

The closing Bad Love is a thoughtfully and skilfully crafted offering but lacks something which pushed the previous songs to lofty heights. Certainly the guitar craft and rhythmic demands are as impressive and potent as ever and vocally Gulino takes no prisoners with his appealing delivery, but there is a spark missing. Nevertheless the song proves again the new invention and adventure of On Top is an impressive step forward and leads anticipation of their next full-length to make an appearance.

On Top is a band still moving towards fulfilling their potential but are certainly on course and the right lines as shown by the thoroughly enjoyable Top To Bottom.

The Top To Bottom EP is available via Horror Pain Gore Death Productions now!

http://www.ontoprocks.com

8/10

RingMaster 04/06/2014

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