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

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On Top – Top To Bottom

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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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Hard Riot – The Blackened Heart

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Having impressed and thrilled with their debut album Living on a Fast Lane, German rockers Hard Riot return with its successor The Blackened Heart, a release which immediately shows how much the band has grown in songwriting, craft, and sound. It is fair to say that like its predecessor the new album is not worrying the inventive boundaries of heavy and voracious rock ‘n’ roll, but like the debut it is a thoroughly captivating and mouthwatering blaze of sinewed riffs, feverish adrenaline, and ferocious passion.

Hailing from Heilbronn, Hard Riot began in 2006 and was soon casting a potent web of rock and metal, its spices first showing on The Hidden Truth EP of 2009. Consisting of vocalist/guitarist Michael Gildner, guitarist Andreas Rockrohr, bassist Mario Kleindienst, and drummer Carmine Jaucci, the band showed their emerging strength and sound, with its essences of AC/DC, Def, Aerosmith, and Staind, three years later on Living on a Fast Lane which they recorded with producer Vagelis Maranis before unleashing it as the new one through Pitch Black Records. The Blackened Heart, also created with Maranis and with Heiko Härle the newest member of the band on bass and backing vocals replacing Kleindienst, is the next big step in the ascent of the band, a release easy to expect bringing fresh eager attention upon the band.

The album starts as it means to go on with a fiery storm in the shape of Blackout. Riffs and rhythms instantly assault and excite ears as it PBR030takes its first breath before welcoming the excellent vocals of Gildner, who right away seems as the music to have even greater power and confidence in his delivery. The guitars and bass almost stalk the senses as the feisty narrative, musically and lyrically, of the track entrenches its infectiousness into the imagination. There is a real anthemic feel to the song without pandering to easy hooks and though it is not the most inventive track around, the thought and precise alignment of sounds is open to see and devour greedily.

It is a great start matched by the following Suicide Blues, its entrance less forceful but just as dynamic after the first caress of chords. Holding stronger old school metal seeds in its belly and a groove metal hunger in its breath, the track swaggers and surges with a contagiousness which is irresistible. Scorched riffs and pungent rhythms persist on the senses as the track romps with relish for three minutes plus of irrepressible rock ‘n’ roll. It is song made for feet and neck muscles, which get a sort of breather with the next up Devils BBQ, a riveting roar of southern rock based enterprise with a great country/Cajun twang in its veining. Like its predecessors, there is nothing spectacularly new to it but it plays like an old friend with a fresh colour to its creative clothing which simply captivates for a tantalising treat which leaves a smile on face and emotions.

The End strides purposefully into view next, swipes of riffs and tempered rhythms courting expressive vocals before combining for a rich flame of melodic hard rock up to and around a potently catchy chorus. It is not as immediate as certainly the first two songs on the album but once bodies are bouncing around rooms and bums on chairs you realise it has hit the sweet spot just as accurately as any other track on the album. From that Nickelback like canter, the emotive ballad Count On Me croons in the ear with melodic seduction and vocal angst, again recalling spices of the Canadian band. The song is soon under the skin and teasing thoughts and emotions, it’s perfectly crafted body not surprising in any way but certainly lingering with German persuasion.

The pair of Not Alone and The Enemy Within leaves imagination and appetite busy though not matching the strength of the album up to this point. The first builds an evocative flame of melodies and emotive vocals around choppy riffs and crisp beats which binds attention whilst the second teases with another countrified twang before its bluesy heart wraps imaginatively around the ears. Both songs reveal more of the improved skill and adventurous exploits within the thinking of the band whilst pleasing ears with immensely accomplished designs.

Dirty Games steps up next to growl provocatively, its riffs and rhythms a predatory lure over which Gildner again deeply impresses. Crowding around ears with incendiary hues and patterns, the guitars cast a potent enticement which dares to flourish but never exceed the core boundaries of the vivaciously driven track. It is a strong asset of the album, the restraint to the individual’s skill which other bands might fail to rein in, but Hard Riot know when enough is enough to impress and enhance but not overload a song.

Second ballad Last Goodbye with its great violin call is an enjoyably decent companion before the bold wanton sounds of High Society Bitch ignite in ears and imagination. It is a tremendous snarl of dirty rock ‘n roll with a raucous edge to its infection which is surpassed by the closing brawl of Hit The Ground, a thumping stomp of a song which again has nothing truly new to show but all the virulent contagiousness and quality you could wish for in a heavy rock song.

The CD version of The Blackened Heart comes with an additional track, a reworked version of The End featuring Richard Sjunnesson of The Unguided which to be honest we preferred to the original just because of the great union of the two vocalists. The album itself is another impressive and exciting encounter from Hard Riot, a release showing the band yet to find its distinctive voice is certainly on the way to being a potent force and attraction; already they have a thrilling and appealing presence sorted.

The Blackened Heart is available via Pitch Black Records now in Europe and North America from July 8th.

http://www.hard-riot.com/

8/10

RingMaster 03/06/2014

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Scream Arena – Self Titled

Scream Arena fireplace photo

Though their self-titled debut does not offer anything to truly blow the imagination away, UK rockers Scream Arena vein their release with an essence which makes it a very appetising and easy to return to venture. Consisting of twelve tracks which breathe from a hard rock heart whilst infusing rich spices of melodic metal aligned to a swagger related to glam rock, the album is an honestly satisfying encounter; nothing to get the passions racing but plenty to have them hungry for more.

Scream Arena was formed in 2005 by vocalist/songwriter Andy Paul in response to how he felt the rock scene was floundering at the time. Moving through numerous personnel changes, the band eventually found its potency and stability with the line-up guitarists Alex Mullings and Phil O’Dea, bassist Lincoln J. Roth, and drummer Michael Maleckyj alongside Paul. It was the linking up with US rock producer/musician Paul Sabu (David Bowie, Madonna, KISS, Shania Twain, Silent Rage) for the album which has provided the final spark to grabbing a richer spotlight for their sound and presence, something the release shines with. There is a certain Cooper-esque feel to the sound soaking each track and flavours from the likes of Motley Crue, Kiss, and Extreme seem to soak into the band’s invention which makes for a familiar offering with a refreshing and heartily pleasing presence but also a lack of uniqueness which all evens out for an easily pleasing and enjoyable proposition.

Opening track Born Ready revs itself up from the first second, riffs and rhythms a solidly coaxing lure which the guitar design of the Scream Arena - coverartsong explores with eagerness. Once into a purposeful stride with flailing sonic flumes wrapping notes and ears as the gruff tones of Paul eagerly travels the road of the song; it is a magnetic anthem awakening attention and appetite for the impending adventure, which the following engagement of The Price Of Love takes into another gear. Again there is nothing flash about the song, just straight forward and accomplished rock ‘n’ roll cored by infectious short grooves and an excellent rhythmic tempting. The bass also adds to the irrepressible bait of the song, its dark throaty tones a prowling shadow to the punkish twist of the song and the fluid addictive call of the band vocals across the chorus. The song easily confirms, alongside its predecessor, the strength and potency of Scream Arena’s sound and the strength of the album though levels do ebb and flow throughout its remainder.

   Racing To The End Of Night is the first lull in the contagion of the album, its melodic balladry and sensitive sonic enterprise excellently crafted alongside the kiss of eighties bred keys but the spark which made the previous songs notable is a dull light. Nevertheless the song makes for an evocative companion before the sturdier slightly antagonistic House of Pain brings its muscular body and rhythmic caging to bear on thoughts and emotions. The song is an instantly accessible pleasure with bass and drums again stealing the limelight before the stylish skill and colour of guitar takes its fair share of the spoils. With a chorus quite incendiary on the passions the track makes for a gripping incitement which is hard to say is equalled by the cover of Heartbreak Hotel which comes straight after. The song is a mixed bag and leaves thoughts undecided. Certainly the fact that the band turns it into their own song rather than producing just a straight a cover is commendable and very pleasing but it feels like something is missing, a vital ingredient to pull all their ideas into the gem it threatens but fails ultimately to be.

Another Night in London makes for a very easy to immerse in stroll whilst the lively and boisterous Knave Of Hearts romps with feisty intent and gripping invention to steal best track honours with ease. It arguably marks a more adventurous turn in the album with the excellent Forever unleashing emotive guitar expression and skilful rhythmic enticement alongside a similarly potent vocal lure. Goodnight LA is a paler and predictable if admittedly very decent meat between the previous slice of quality and the following pair of Somewhere and the sultry Queen Of Dreams. The first of the two is a hazy breeze of evocative sonic hues and spicy melodies which cradles thoughts and emotions bewitchingly whilst the second of the two soaks the ears in a warm melodic embrace clad in a smouldering glaze of sonic temptation.

With bonus track Heart Of The Rock rigorously and enjoyably bringing the album to a close, Scream Arena has provided a weighty persuasion which marks out their potential in lively colour. It is not a powerfully dramatic introduction to the York based band but certainly leaves no doubts that they are upon a potent ascent.

The Scream Arena album is available now via Mighty Music.

http://www.screamarena.com/

7/10

RingMaster 14/05/2014

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Smash Fashion – Big Cat Love

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The wantonly enigmatic sound and presence of US rockers Smash Fashion has always made for a compelling and thrilling proposition since forming in 2004 and new album Big Cat Love provides no deviation in that potency. In fact it takes it to richer captivating levels with another collection of riotously varied and adventurous fusions of rock ‘n’ roll. The album sees the band again reaping the blooms of various decades and styles of raw and boisterous rock music, hard and glam rock as home within their invention as fifties rock ‘n’ roll and power pop. It makes for a tantalising proposition from the band’s third album, one which even with a couple of lulls in its persuasion is a stirring captivation from start to finish.

Hailing from Los Angeles, Smash Fashion consists of musicians drenched in experience and successes. The band is led by vocalist/guitarist Roger Deering alongside bassist Nigel Mogg (ex- London Quireboys), drummer Repo (ex-Smack), and guitarist Lloyd Stuart Casson (ex- Rock City Angels). Their previous full-lengths A Gentlemens Guide to Sophisticated Savagery and Don’t Pet The Sweaty Things in 2006 and 2009 respectively, set the band apart and into an eager spotlight for their expansive sound whilst last year’s single Blame It On The Brandy more than hinted at the promise of and raised anticipation for the new release. It was potential easily realised by the again Electricpudding Recordings released album, a confirmation of that clue and of the ever hungry invention and appetite of a band which has graced stages with the likes of Ian Hunter, Arthur Lee and Love, The Zombies, Cheap Trick, Psychedelic Furs, The Alarm, Missing Person, Orson, JET, and The 88 over the years.

A gong opens up attention and the entrance of first track Wicked Ways, a shock to ears which are soon filled with enticingly grooved big-cat-love-albumguitars and crisp probing rhythms. It is instant agreeable bait which only increases its lure with the vocals of Deering and an increasingly potent infectiousness which soaks the melodies and chorus of the song as well as the vocal delivery. You cannot say that the song is a startling protagonist for the imagination and emotions but it is a persistently persuasive stroll of finely sculpted hooks, fiery grooves, and sonic enterprise which achieves the same impact. Feeling like an old friend in new clothes in many ways, much like the album, the song is an impressive opener which is swiftly matched by Marionette. Bringing more punkish seeds than the first whilst still firmly involved with a hard rock canvas, the excellent track seduces like a mix of early days The Jam and The Vapors, easily igniting and passions. The fact that it is a reworking from an appearance on the last album makes no difference to its might and presence on the album, such its thrilling offering.

The following Strike My Fancy (Knickers Down) is as flamboyant and wonderfully sleazy as its title suggests though with a refined touch in restraint behind a melodic colour which flames around the senses as keys tease their submission. It is another excellent romp with more contagion than a strip club and just as sexy, especially with the incendiary guitar craft blazing across its body, a skill just as evident in Stay Off My La La and You Love to Suffer. The first of the pair shows its intent to rock from the first seconds, riffs and vocals a keen devilry within a sturdy frame of rhythms and dark roaming basslines. As all the songs there is something virulently catchy and anthemic to the track easily bringing feet, voice, and emotions into its grasp. Thoughts of bands like The Motors and Eddie and the Hot Rods are stirred occasionally through the song before it makes way for its successor, a smouldering ballad which from humble temptations emerges over time as a riveting enticement with dark sixties punk croon to its suasion.

The title track comes in next, starting with a mischievous almost tribal groan which sparks real intrigue but then as swiftly abandons the bait to twist into a glam/seventies pop rock which is more than decent but just does not excite like the previous songs. Like Darts meets The Quireboys it is a satisfying romp but not one to fire up any real passion in personal tastes, though the bass endeavour and climactic conclusion to the song are big pluses. The perfectly accomplished and varied Just a Kiss At the Starting Line is much the same in success though different in sound with its country rock twang and bold melodic rock stroll. The guitars and drums again ensure there is plenty to engage and run with, just not enough to spark any major ardour for.

Super Glam next builds a bold rock lure of country bred spice amidst a power pop lilt and darkly toned vocals. It is another song taking time to convince but succeeds eventually through its excellent pop swagger and hard rock veining of outstanding guitar craft and pumped rhythms. It is one of those devious songs which takes a deeper grip than first realised to be a lingering presence, though the following punk infused Aim for the Heart soon has total attention for itself, the song an outstanding fusion of the addictive hooks of Buzzcocks and rich drama of Psychedelic Furs all immersed in the kind of premise which only Smash fashion can conjure. The song is an infectious temptation with feisty intent, a mix equalled by Blame It On the Brandy right after. The song immediately has ears at attention as it opens with ridiculously addictive rhythms before settling into a brew of alluring hooks, stirring riffs, and healthily anthemic vocals. Bringing seventies glam flourishes into a tempest of blues kissed rock n roll, the excellent encounter is a mix of American rock and Thin Lizzy, and a complete joy.

The dusty climate and vocal shade to Live to Tell makes for another very satisfying if not explosive avenue to the album, its scenery a bloom of shapely guitar invention and flavoursome rhythmic wile, before Stairs to Nowhere brings Big Cat Love to a rousing close. A big boned mesh of seventies hard rock and garage punk with unsurprising but enjoyable animated energy and passion, the track makes for an eventful conclusion to a fascinating triumph. Boundaries are not worried and originality arguably left alone for the main by Smash Fashion on their album but they still present a proposition which incites pleasure and the rocker in us all and that is more than enough for us.

Big Cat Love is available via Electricpudding Recordings now!

http://www.smashfashionmusic.com

8/10

RingMaster 09/05/2014

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Silent Jack – Snakebite

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    Silent Jack is one of those propositions where you pretty much know what you are going to get flavour wise but not necessarily the juicy way they unleash it on the senses. Hailing from Birmingham, the British quartet engage and riot with the imagination through a sound bred openly in eighties hard rock and filtered through a glam rock mischief. Their new release Snakebite is an exciting offering which provides all the attitude, endeavour, and enterprise needed to suspect that the band is on a path to strong recognition. The seven tracks which provide its rippling temptation is a mixed bagged when it comes to offering surprises to expectations but an unqualified success in contagiously recruiting thoughts and emotions into the fiery bosom of the band’s captivating presence.

Listening to the release you can easily assume the influences which have inspired the band, the likes of Motley Crue, Guns ‘n’ Roses, Hardcore Superstar, Ratt, Buckcherry, and Black Stone Cherry clear flavours throughout Snakebite. It is easy and arguably fair to say that there is little new or original within the encounter but that cannot take away from the thrills and spills which sparks the real enjoyment it consummately provides. Formed in 2009, Silent Jack has won over its home town tenfold and now it is looking to seduce the rest of the country and beyond, and though it might take more than this brawl of pleasure to achieve that they are easily on course and capable.

The band gets off to a flyer with opener Brand New Start, beats and riffs an immediate potent coaxing before the guitars of vocalist Rich Silent-Jack-Snakebite-Cover-300x300Mason and Adam Carson boil up the air with rapacious riffing and sonic flames. The bass of Dickie Spider brings dark intimidation into the mix next whilst drummer Scott Carson intensifies his punchy raps as the track expands into a stronger feisty stride. The guitars continue to snarl as Mason unveils his appealing vocals, the song already flowing infectiously across the senses as rhythmic swipes and a predatory tone adds to its persistent persuasion. The track has the potential to be a hard rock anthem in so many ways and with the sonic flair and adventure woven into the encounter by Adam Carson it is a virulent enticement which has imagination, appetite, and passions alive.

The following King Cobra is just as addictive, it’s rapping beats and more distant scrub of guitar a teasing entrance which easily leads greed into the heart of another blaze of accomplished rock ‘n’ roll stoked with flailing sinews and melodic acidity. As with the first the contagious call of the song is irrepressible and irresistible, the chorus call alone incitement to listener participation and emotions thirsty for more. Once again individual skills and ideation impress but together the band most light up ears and the continually bubbling promise of the band.

Going Down ensures the impressive start is continued, its salacious lure of guitar from the first breath of the song seducing instant submission which the rampaging rhythms and caustic riffery only accelerates. There is a great raw edge to the track which sets it apart from the first two and a groove which twists rapaciously around the imagination, persistently licking at the passions with its serpentine tongue. Once more maybe something truly different within hard rock is scarce in the songs, as the release, but unleashing such epidemically catchy and enthralling adventure as it does there are no complaints valid enough to defuse the enjoyment of the song.

A scorching fire of guitar sculpting and intense rhythmic pressure opens up the next up Love Factory to make an instant strong impression, the grumbling nature of the bass adding enticing intrigue to the satisfying invitation offered. A heated blues flames joins the blend soon, wrapping every twist and turn of the song as Silent Jack stomp once more with a skilled and confident swagger. Feet and voice are soon enslaved and enlisted by the stroll and infection of the song, its gait a compelling bait and chorus another which only the dead could ignore.

The first four songs are the pinnacle of Snakebite though the remaining trio of tracks still add to the stature and potential of the band as well as the pleasure gained from the release. The imposing ballad Angels Cry is first and easily shows the vocal prowess of Mason and emotive craft of the band’s songwriting within its shapely and flavoursome design. It does miss out on the spark of earlier tracks though to merely satisfy rather than potently excite as equally does Made In Heaven. The song like the previous one, is impressively sculpted and veined by sonic hues which ask for attention as the display of anthemic vocal tempting, but the trigger to make the encounter larger than life is absent. Nevertheless both songs and the closing Hot Luvin’ with its masterful teasing bring the release to an invigorating and pleasing conclusion.

Snakebite is a proposition which hard rock fans should take a punt on as you can see them devouring the release greedily. Certainly originality is low and a wish for some experimentation which would lead to a distinct character for the band would be welcome but it cannot deny that Silent Jack has delivered a very enjoyable encounter and have the wares to become a real force in European rock ‘n’ roll. It may take time but we are not betting against them.

The self-released Snakebite is available now!

https://www.facebook.com/silentjackband

8/10

RingMaster 08/05/2014

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The Idol Dead – Dark Little Heart

The Idol Dead Online Promo shot

If you missed out on the initial release of Dark Little Heart at the tail of 2012 from UK rockers The Idol Dead then stand ready to leap on board with its reboot this week through the band’s own label RAAA! Records. It is a feisty and fiery slab of rowdy and bruising rock ‘n’ roll but one with all the insatiable charm of a lady of the night and the contagious strength of the common cold. The Leeds hailing quintet merges glam and hard rock with a voracious breed of punk resulting in an invigorating and immensely enjoyable rampage of sound and enjoyment. Admittedly its first contact courtesy of the opening song left a promising and pleasing suasion but one which left reservations in regard to its originality and finding a spark to ignite more than simple satisfaction. They were short lived concerns though, the second track bringing a voracious bait before the imagination which set thoughts and emotions on fire. Certainly the album stays away from forging a really distinctive new proposition, thoughts of The Wildhearts and Backyard Babies an undeniable comparison, but Dark Little Heart emerges as one rebellious stomp of rock ‘n’ roll which simply hits the sweet spot.

The Idol Dead began in 2008 and soon made a rapid impression on the local rock scene. Their reputation for explosive live performances went before them as the band played throughout the UK, sharing stages with the likes of Killing Joke, Sebastian Bach, Buckcherry, Evil Scarecrow, Blackfoot, Warrior Soul, Molly Hatchet, Hatebreed, Pitchshifter, Laika Dog, and Spear of Destiny along the way as well as enjoying great responses at numerous festivals. After the well-received Shooting Star EP, the band’s debut album Die on my Feet or Live on my Knees on their own label marked the band out and drew strong responses but it is through the crowd funded Dark Little Hearts that you feel that The Idol Dead will find access to a much wider attention and fevered spotlight. Inevitable line-up shifts along the way have seen the band adapt and grow so that the five piece of vocalist Polly Phluid, guitarists KC Duggan and Tim Jeffs, bassist Dan Sugden, and drummer Nish Gonsalkorale now show themselves to be a potentially explosive proposition within British rock.

As mentioned at the start of the review, opening track Blue Skies provides an appealing encounter but is somewhat underwhelming in its The Idol Dead Cover Artworkpersuasion due to there being little surprise or unpredictability to its otherwise potent presence. Certainly the passion and craft of the band is an open declaration whilst infectiousness is rife from the riffs to the thumping rhythms and from the impressive vocals to the united anthemic band calls beside them. In hindsight it feels like the band is playing safe to start things off, giving ears a well formed and boisterous yet easily accessible entrance into the album. The track is still a thoroughly pleasing offer though but soon left looking pale as the following song lights the fuse to a passionate and imagination stirring experience.

Six Feet Under is just glorious, from its initial flush of raw flame of riffs and inciting rhythms it is an instantaneous trap which has feet, senses, and imagination recruited with its punk ‘n’ roll bred contagion. Holding an essence of Misfits to its sinewed romp and passions corralling enterprise, the track drags out a hungry appetite for it and the album. Again it is fair to say surprises are scarce in many ways, though just the weighty temptation and resourceful triumph of the track alone makes a detonator to the expulsion of expectations whilst leaving thrills and spills rampant. It is a major highlight but one which itself is exceeded by the following Vampire. From an atmospheric intimidating ambience in the dead of night, the song erupts with scorching flames of guitar and moody rhythms matched by the dark throated bass. The vocals of Phluid equally have a sinister edge and leer to their tone which adds greater intrigue to the narrative of the outstanding song. The band finds an even more addictive toxin to the chorus and infection veining the horror punk like predation, sculpting a track even more immense and irresistible than its predecessor.

Both Dion and Hey Girl unveil superbly crafted and shaped bodies of hard rock bred enticement and though neither can match the heights of the previous pair, the songs feed compelling strides of rock ‘n’ roll into a hungry appetite. The first is much like the opener in that is has few moments of wrong footing assumptions but provides enough invention in its unrelenting catchiness to bring a wholesome appetiser to devour before the more substantial feast of its successor twists and rolls with its garage punk/hard rock fusion. The song takes mere seconds to have limbs and voice enlisted in its cause, giving them a vivacious ride of riffs and grooves with barbed rhythmic hooks before making way for the ferocious Bad Fiction. The punk sided heart of the band is an open brawl in the song, rapacious mischief and energy surging through riffs and adrenaline gifted rhythms. Vocally too the band snarls and incites but it and the sounds all come with a wink and a loud whisper of Generation X within the urgency and pent up roar which wants to rock rather than fight.

The pair of I’m Drowning, a captivating stirring ballad featuring the excellent guest vocals of Claire Cameron alongside the again strongly impressive Phluid, and the magnetic Bleed continue to keep imagination and emotions on their feet; both with a longer to convince persuasion but each evolving into easy to recommend highlights upon the album.

The closing stretch of the album is a little undulating but continues to thrill; the blues filtered You Don’t Know a sonic fire which misses finding the trigger which elevates other tracks so masterly and the closing Beautiful Disaster almost ending the album as it started with a less than imposing offering but a skilfully written and presented one which does enough to leave a contented listener. Between them though the band unleashes one final gem in the rabid punk spawned I Don’t Wanna, an unbridled charge of dirty and belligerent rock ‘n’ roll with all the lures and seduction to spring the inner punk in us all. It is a terrific provocation again proving the potential and already open quality of The Idol Dead.

With Dark Little Heart you are not going to find new pastures to explore but for excitingly accomplished and virulent rock ‘n’ roll, there are few around right now to impress more than The Idol Dead.

Dark Little Hearts is available on 5th May through RAAA! Records.

http://theidoldead.com

8/10

RingMaster 04/05/2014

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Boy – Darkest Visions

boy 2

Imagine a mix of The Angelic Upstarts and UK Subs with an equally potent blend of Rocket From The Crypt and Turbonegro, and you have a sense of Czech punks Boy and the body of their outstanding debut album Darkest Visions. Fusing old school British punk with a touch of glam and raw rock ‘n’ roll, band and release make a dramatic entrance to a worldwide market with their Rebel Sound/Voltage Records released rampage. It is an encounter which has a welcome familiarity to its brawl but just as strongly a unique breath and substance which marks out Boy as a band with a potentially mighty future within the world of punk rock. The band name suggests wishy-washy media friendly teen pleasing blandness, what you get is raw antagonistic punk rock of the finest order.

There is little we can reveal about the background of the band with any available bio offered in Czechoslovakian, but they are a quintet from Brno who have previously released a three track 7” EP via Voltage Records last year and before that had a track on the 2012 compilation Brno stále v plamenech (Brno Still In Flames). Their new full-length is produced by Turbonegro’s Tommy Akerholdt and features numerous guests including Ronnie King (who has worked with NOFX, Rancid, Offspring, Snoop Dog) on piano, Shawn Smash (Total Chaos) on guitar, Daniel Marusack (Chancers) on flute, Theresa Kovalová (Calm Season) on cello, and Martin Maleček (ex – Centaury ,SRK) on conga. That piece of info alone tells you the flavoursome design and sounds bursting from within the punk bred tempest, though the album starts off with a more straight forward belligerent sound.

The title track opens things up with a fiery welcome, hooks blazing vociferously within the ears whilst vocal samples bred from 9/11 place front coverthe drama of the release. It is a heavy weight welcome with sinews building up their intent and intensity ready for the following I Need Your Hate. The second track is immediately snarling and gnawing at the senses, riffs bordering on carnivorous and rhythms an imposing barracking. The excellent rough vocals roar and confront with a voracity which matches the passion of the sounds around them, the song further flaming with seductive melodies from within its rapacious onslaught. There is nothing dramatically ground breaking about the song but with impressive individual skills, a scorching solo, and anthemic band vocals it is an irresistible proposition.

Never Break Us Down binds the imagination next with an instant addictive groove, a lure aligned to numerous sharp hooks and that again virulent anthem seeded suasion which already the band proves they are expert at sculpting. The resourceful romp offers that earlier mentioned RFTC comparison as well as holding a touch of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones to its catchy temptation, both elements re-occurring across the album and adding extra spice to the outstanding raucous charge of punk ’n’ roll. It is a mix which lights up Back For More to a different degree, the band grazing the senses with greater causticity and ravenous breath. Again there is a compelling contagion to the track which has attention and appetite impatient for more which Stay Free more than happily provides. Abrasing ears with acidic sonic swipes from the first second along with an evocatively brewing wash of keys, the track broadens its riveting narrative with a wonderful dark cello croon and atmospheric shadows. It is like a mix of UK band The Duel and Russian punks Biting Elbows, an invasive seduction which subsequently stretches further into a NOFX like imposing. The track is quite glorious, pushing the invention and songwriting of the band whilst still entrenched in their epidemically appealing seventies seeded punk.

Stop Talking To Me stalks and riles up the imagination next, riffs on a chunky prowl speared by predatory rhythms. The vocals are vitriolic in delivery and malevolent in intent, a seemingly different voice leading the intrusive belligerence as the track squares up to the senses and emotions. It is a great strike but one which ends far too soon, only one minute forty seconds in length, and closes on a frustrating and actually very annoying fade-out. These grievances are soon forgotten though as Drop The Bomb scores ears with an acrid flame of guitar punctuated by keys and wisps of melodic guitar invention. The song strides purposefully with a slow predation, absorbing imagination and the by now constantly submissive passions. It is another total captivation revealing yet more of the depths of sound and invention within Boy, the unveiling continued with the heavy rock exploits of It was the Alcohol. The track is prime punk and hard rock with glam devilry and metal toned hunger, and impossibly addictive especially its infectious chorus which is bait only the deaf or the six feet under could resist joining in with.

The album comes to a close with firstly the thrilling quarrelsome bluster and catchiness of Fashion Police then the incendiary glory of Just A Number. The last track is an aggressive scrap of spellbinding hooks, fierce riffs, and punchy rhythms all merged into a rabid contagious punk spat, a last lingering triumph to sear the sound and name of Boy in to the memory and passions.

Darkest Visions is one of the punk glories of recent years and a potent suggestion that Boy has all the armoury and invention to be a real force in punk and rock rioting across numerous horizons to come.

Darkest Visions is available through Rebel Sound and Voltage Records now as a black vinyl release with a 12 -page booklet and in a deluxe version clad in silver foiled artwork.

https://www.facebook.com/PUNKROCKHOOLIGANS

http://www.boy-punk.com/

9/10

RingMaster 19/04/2014

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Titans & Kings – Set Fire To The Night

titans and kings

Creating a feisty and energetic blend of eighties hard and modern alternative rock with extra pleasing spices, UK rock band Titans & Kings is an encounter impossible not to develop an eager appetite for, especially taking new single Set Fire To The Night as the doorway into their fiery sound. The band has been earning strong praise and attention over recent months and it is not hard to see why using the single as evidence. The song does suggest that the London quartet is still defining their musical voice and uniqueness but that just adds that little bit more spice to the promise within the already accomplished and engaging encounter.

Set Fire To The Night follows the well-received recent release of the Hold Your Tongue EP as well as the success of the band’s first Titans & Kings - Set Fire to The Night (iTunes Artwork) (1)UK tour they have just completed. Recorded at Freefall Studios, the single leaves no riff bred beckoning and melodic enticement at home, the song from its first moments a riotous and agreeably anthemic proposition. It plays like Jimmy Eats World meets Black Stone Cherry with the fire of Buckcherry involved, though there is more to it than that. The song emerges from a distant blaze of guitar on a drum thumping before relaxing with muscles still flexed into an embrace of melodic endeavour and sonic enterprise. Once the vocals begin their narrative, aligned to the great throaty bass skirting, an eighties rock essence washes over the imagination. It is a pleasing if undemanding coaxing which recruits full attention; jagged riffs and entwining melodies adding to the bait of the song.

There is a definite familiarity to the track too which makes it simply over friendly rather than a replica of something else but it is the constantly evolving and emerging imagination of the band which steals the spotlight, twists in ideas, gait, and energy an exciting unpredictable enticement. That recognisable element of the song fuels the thought that Titans & Kings is still searching for their distinctive flavour but equally with its inventive exploration the single provides proof that something individual to the band is coming to push a sound which is already a mouthwatering suasion on ears and emotions.

It is fair to say that Set Fire To The Night will not be the song that sets your year alight but it certainly given the chance will warm it up quite nicely as Titans & Kings continue their increasingly impressive way to that incendiary event they seemingly have the potential to create. For vivacious rock ‘n’ roll Set Fire To The Night is well worth romping with.

www.titansandkings.com

7.5/10

RingMaster 24/03/2014

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