Carousels & Limousines – Strange Love EP

 

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There is an ethereal charm or should that be mischief to the sound of UK quintet Carousels & Limousines, a flavoursome and fascinating breath which is as unworldly as it is earthy ensuring every song is as distinctly different as they are united in transfixing the senses. Certainly going by new EP Strange Love this is so, a four track proposition which lies engagingly on ears like a morning mist and captures the imagination with haunting drama. It is an encounter which has moments that simply seduce without restraint and other times where it has to work to grip the same attention, but ultimately it is a release which inspires a raw appetite to explore Carousels & Limousines even more.

Hailing from Bath, the band began in 2012, emerging from previous guise Grace which had local success with the Stealing Kisses EP. A change in the band’s line-up seems to have been the trigger to new adventure and bigger things within the band which, to condense things, changed their name and entered the studio with producer Richard Causon (Kings Of Leon, Tom Jones, Rufus Wainwright) to record debut album Home To Andy’s, which was released to keen responses in the June of last year. Now the band has moved up a gear and temptation with the Strange Love EP which has also spawned the AA-sided single Superman/Strange Love, this and the EP two compelling doorways into the creative magnetism and sonic haze of Carousels & Limousines.

The release opens with Superman and swiftly as it emerges from its sonic mist with a rhythmic coaxing it has ears and thoughts fully engaged. The bass of Finn McNulty courts the first caress cadizcd130[1]of guitar with a shadow clad tempting whilst the reserved beats of Martyn James almost tease as they mark the entrance of the fine and expressive vocals of Sam Gotley. His tone as the sounds around him is sultry, almost bewitched at times, instantly adding to the smouldering psychedelic lure of the song. Breaking into feistier melodic rock as the guitars of Jamie Wales and Gotley align with the keys of Dominik Sky, the track vivaciously sizzles before returning to its warm flirtation, starting the inescapable temptation all over again. With a sixties air and seventies hue to its colour, the song is a delicious start to the release, alone trapping thoughts and ears into wanting more.

The following Don’t Look Down steps forward with a bluesy Americana toning to its gentle stroll, bass and voice again the early persuasion before guitars and rhythms open up rich but still reserved persuasion. A warm glow of keys brings a mesmeric enticing to the song’s easy going proposal and though it never comes close to impressing and lighting fires as its predecessor, primarily down to personal tastes on its style of music, the song with its potent theatre does little to defuse the urge to investigate the band further.

She’s In The Water steps up next and straight away has intrigue in full flow with its pulsating heavy rhythmic tones and alluring group vocal calls. It is bred from the same seeds as its predecessor but there is a mesmeric croon and tantalising, almost sinister, presence to its enterprise and imagination which especially shines in the chorus, a moment which almost ripples over the senses as the disturbed surface of its title’s action would suggest. The track easily worms under the skin and memory, making frequent returns in thoughts on its own whim even away from the EP.

The release is closed by the EP’s title track, and second song on the new single. Strange Love is an acoustic affair, guitar and voice combining to seduce whilst a Pixies-esque breeze emerges in the harmonies and surf rock like wiry melodies which roam the background. As the last track it is a riveting nagging, relentless temptation which lurks and lingers long pass its company stealing the biggest slice of attention and passions on the release.

The Strange Love EP was not an instant persuasion it is fair to say, though it had plenty to enlist an immediate and eager return, but is an emerging melodic provocateur providing a thoroughly captivating enjoyment. Carousels & Limousines deviously infest ears and thoughts with their sounds, sometimes the realisation only coming long after its departure.

The Strange Love EP and AA-sided single is available now via Pulteney Records.

http://www.carouselsandlimousines.co.uk/

RingMaster 18/11/2014

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The Jacques – Pretty DJ EP

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Like a hybrid infestation spawned from a mix of Babyshambles, Arctic Monkeys, and The Sugarcubes, The Jacques in one scintillating swoop has announced themselves as one of the UK’s most exciting newcomers. That potent introduction comes in the sensational shape of the Pretty DJ EP, a four track stomp of Britpop and pop punk infused with garage rock devilry, which from first to last breath inflames the imagination and incites the body.

Formed only in January of this year and consisting of two sets of brothers aged 16 to 21, The Jacques inspired by the sounds they were raised upon which included the likes of The Strokes, The Ramones, The Jam, The Lemonheads, and Elvis Costello, swiftly made their mark on the live scene. In a few brief months the Bristol hailing quartet of vocalist/guitarist Bonnie Jacques, guitarist Jake Edwards, bassist/vocalist Oli Edwards, and drummer Elliot O’Brien found themselves playing numerous festivals across the summer including Guilfest and at Hyde Park where they supported The Libertines and caught the attention of their drummer Gary Powell, the co-founder of 25 Hour Convenience Store, who signed them on the spot to the label which now uncages the band’s first irresistible offering.

Recorded at Rockfield Studios with Dan Swift, Pretty DJ opens with its title track and instantly ignites the imagination and appetite with an initial jangle of spicy guitar. With rhythms soon in tow, the song relaxes into a warm yet unpredictable stroll littered with quirky hooks, a rhythmic shuffle, and a richly persuasive bassline. It is potent bait especially when the distinct and unbroken vocals of Bonnie flirt with ears, his tones refreshingly unique and individually expressive even at a young age. The song proceeds to weave its salacious sonic curves and healthy rhythmic persuasion with raw and compelling seduction, every syllable and note brought with a dose of eclectic enterprise. It is a sensational first taste of the band and release which only inflames hunger the_jacques-pretty_dj-ep-2014-artwork-e1414933180481and passion for more with every twist in its armoury

The following Foreign Films has a more relaxed gait than the great agitated endeavour of its predecessor, but is no less virulent bait with its sultry melodies and a great vocal duelling between Bonnie and Oli. It is hard to look further than The Libertines as a spicy influence here, though equally there as whiffs of bands like Supergrass and Pulp at play too. The song also carries garage rock tenacity to its sonic and lively cosmopolitan temptation as it reveals a little more of the rich potential and imagination of the young band.

Scum In A Bottle also visits that garage rock breeding as well as a punk causticity which adds further tasty shades of endeavour to the release. Guitars spark and flame with raw charm whilst again the vocals tantalise with their seamless union and magnetic uniqueness. Littered with mouth-watering craft and creative revelry from the guitars and a pungent baiting from the intrepid rhythms, the track steals its own thick wedge of the rich praise building up inside waiting to shower the release, a portion matched by that garnered by the closing Weekends.

The final track swiftly has its temptation ingrained through an opening bass lure. Always a sucker for throaty enticing like this, the track had us gripped from its first second and only proceeded to increase its hold with tangy grooves and similarly tasty hooks across bracing swipes of sonic causticity. As with all the tracks, it is impossible for feet and vocal chords not to join its call, with pleasure in close quarters to their eagerness.

It is fair to say that The Jacques wear their influences on their sleeve but only as homage to those inspirations and as an invigorating hue to their own invention. The Pretty DJ EP is easily one of the highlights of the year and easy reasoning as to why Mr Powell leapt upon them within a breath of discovering their existence.

The Pretty DJ EP is available now via 25 Hour Convenience Store @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/pretty-dj-ep/id930507850

https://www.facebook.com/TheJacquesBand

RingMaster 12/11/2014

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Matinée – These Days

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A release radiating melodic smiles and mischievous energy from start to finish, These Days from UK indie rockers Matinée is one of those encounters which lingers and niggles away at the psyche in and away from its magnetic presence. The album tantalises and flirts with constant imagination and revelry so that whilst it does not exactly light a fire in the passions it is a persistent and refreshing incitement for ears and emotions. There has been an eagerly growing buzz around the East London quartet and the release of their debut full-length reveals exactly why.

Taking their name from the Franz Ferdinand song of the same name, Matinée has earned acclaim and support through their lively stage presence and vivacious sounds. The band has supported the Scottish band on shows in Italy, that leading Matinée to be invited to play numerous major venues in the country whilst receiving strong radio support. With the sharing of stages with the likes of Razorlight, Mystery Jets, Futureheads, The Wombats, Pete and the Pirates, British Sea Power amongst many also under their belts, the band is on a feisty rise, an ascent already reinforced by their singles starting with the acclaimed City Lifestyle. The Tony Doogan (Mogwai, Carl Barat, Glasvegas) produced These Days is the next potent slice of persuasion from the band, a festival of pop rock sure to awaken a broader and keener spotlight upon the foursome of Luigi Tiberio (vocals, synth, guitar), Alfredo Ioannone (vocals , bass), Giuseppe Cantoli (guitars), and Alessio Palizzi (drums).

Opener Bigger Picture instantly grips ears and imagination as an electro pulsing is swiftly joined by heavy resonating rhythms. It is a compelling entrance which only increases in potency as vocals bring their effect wrapped presence into an almost post punk temptation. Choppy riffs link up next as the song shifts into a synth pop/ electro rock stroll complete with imposing shadows and melodic provocation. There is also an eighties feel to the song which only adds to the evocative colour and air of the bewitching and inventively intriguing encounter.

The captivating start is followed by the mellower White Lies, keys bringing a gentle caress initially which is cored by a dark roaming bassline. Energy is raised as a catchy and harmonic chorus grasps ears, the vocals of Tiberio and cover170x170Ioannone an engaging blend which filters through into the surrounding crystalline sounds. The feistiness of the chorus leaves a spark from which the rest of the song also finds greater urgency in its presence, blooming into a controlled yet rampant charge of contagion before the album’s title track and recent single unveils its similarly infectious parade of enterprise. The track is a transfixing shuffle of elegant melodies and emotively expressive vocals within another pungent rhythmic frame, an easy addiction and thoroughly enthralling slice of creative revelry.

Both Said I and City Lifestyle keep attention and appetite bound, the first a smouldering coaxing with wiry grooves and hooks around the persistently heavy footed and thrilling bass lure from Ioannone giving greater depth to songs. There is a touch of Futureheads to the song, especially in its more agitated moments as a whispering eccentricity provides richer intrigue and sonic radiance. The song pulsates as does its successor with its flirty swagger and fleet footed shuffle. It is a treat of a persuasion, an insatiable dance of Arctic Monkey like musical and vocal hooks aligned to Editors bred melodic mischief, and one of the major pinnacles of the album.

     All The Good Fella’s is no slouch at exciting ears and feet either, its slower pace still a bubbling stroll as acidic melodies and spicy vocal harmonies play and tease over a punchy rhythmic stepping. The bass again brings the perfect contrast and compliment to the creative flames provided by Cantili and the warm keys of Tiberio. It is a template for all the songs yet not one sounds like another as proven again by Nobody Like Me and its sinew guided vibrant prowl through a raw and fiery sonic weave. The heaviest track on the album but still a virulent infection to ignite feet and emotions, the song provides another side to the character of the album and Matinée’s songwriting, even if maybe it lacks the spark of some if its predecessors.

New single Missing Pieces of a Jigsaw is next and straight away spreads a masterful cloak of contagion and melodic luster across the senses, sweeping the imagination and emotions up in its lively sunshine before passing them onto If You’re Gone. Featuring Mike Cook and Chris Geddes, past and present of Belle and Sebastian, the track is a thick and enthralling ball of impassioned melodies and expression enriched by the brass flames of Cook and rampant keys of Geddes.

The album comes to a close with 40 Years Old, a sultry and slow burning song which fails to excite as most of its companions on the album but still ensures the album leaves on a potent tempting.

From a strong first impression These Days just gets bigger and stronger with time, as mentioned never setting a fire but inducing a romance in thoughts and emotions through its presence and sound which most bands can only dream of. Matinée is heading towards very healthy and exciting horizons if the potential and majesty of their first album is anything to go by.

These Days is available via Neon Tetra Music now @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/these-days/id927953442

http://www.matineeband.com

RingMaster 04/11/2104

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James King and the Lonewolves – Lost Songs of the Confederacy

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It might be thirty years and more since its release but the James King and the Lonewolves single I Tried/So Alone, has never drifted away too far from the musical landscape here at The RR. With the band coming to a close less than a handful of years later, it is a regular reminder of what might have been and of the potential locked up inside one of the eighties lost opportunities to shine even brighter musically. So it was with surprise and excitement that the band re-emerged a couple of years ago and that the debut album lost to that collapse of the band, was to be released. The original Lost Songs of the Confederacy was recorded with John Cale but as mentioned never saw the like of day, but now ‘mark II’, with re-recorded and re-mastered songs supplemented by new recordings is here and at times it is like the band has never been away.

James King and the Lonewolves emerged in the early eighties in the heart of Glasgow’s music scene and swiftly grabbed attention and support with their feisty and fiery Americana influenced rock ‘n’ roll. The aforementioned single I Tried released via Cubre Libre/Virgin, sparked a wider awareness, certainly grabbing some of us down south. The following Texas Lullaby ‎12″ EP found acclaim of its own too and with the band signing with Alan Horne’s Swamplands label in 1984, it looked like things were about to break for the band. An ill-fated performance on The Old Grey Whistle Test where their profanities drew countless complaints from viewers led to the label dropping the band after just one single and before the album was unveiled. That in turn added to the turbulence within the quartet which saw it subsequently self-implode.

Skip forward to 2011 though and after a ‘long running feud’, James King and Jake McKechan putting differences aside came together as The Lonewolves for a memorial show for former agent, Alan Mawn. Completed by bassist Nick Clark, guitarist Joe Sullivan, and drummer Corey Little; band and audience saw the chemistry was still ablaze within The Lonewolves and they decided to carry on. Released via Edinburgh’s Stereogram Recordings, Lost Songs of the Confederacy is a bridge to the past, ‘unfinished business to be done’ in the words of King, and spark for the future, and as also shown on the recent Pretty Blue Eyes EP, the band’s sound is just as potent and rebellious as ever.

The album seems to work itself up to its biggest triumphs, the first few songs making an appealing and satisfying persuasion but the real roar and fire in the album coming a little later. In saying that opener Fun Patrol immediately ?????????????????????????????????????captures ears and imagination, its initial sonic shimmering bringing a lick of the lips before riffs and rhythms huddle in an imposing stance. King’s vocals carry a mature snarl to his still distinctive tones whilst guitars toy with a bluesy colour to their sultry enterprise. It is a pulsating slice of rock pop, bass almost stalking the senses across its imaginative landscape whilst a flame of harmonica simply lifts spirits and passions further.

It is a mighty start to the album which is not quite matched by either Over the Side or Fly Away. The first caresses ears with sixties melodic coaxing initially, its Kinks like smile an engaging persuasion which the shimmering climate of melodies and throaty bass stroll only accentuates. It is a highly magnetic proposition but is missing the indefinable something which lit its predecessor, the same which can be said of its successor. The album’s third song has a riper infectiousness to it, riffs and hooks inescapable bait but again that certain spark fails to materialise to take an enjoyable song into being an inescapable one. The flame of brass and contagious swagger it carries does it no harm though before it makes way for the hazy presence of Bridgeton Summer. Its air is steamy and melodies again sultry, both wrapping inventive climbs of emotion and energy within the transfixing balladry fuelled song. It also just misses those early heights but provides a vein of ingenuity which is exploited to the full as the album suddenly kicks up in the creative gears.

Even Beatles Die dangles sonic bait to straightaway hook ears and thoughts but it is when the punk voracity and intimidating riffs from guitar and bass break-through, that the track becomes a thrilling predator. It has a nagging to it which is as contagious as it is unrelenting whilst the poppier exploits of guitar and hooks simply flirt with seventies rock ‘n’ roll temptation. It is a treat of a romp setting up the richer blues hued strains of While I Can. With a jazz blues tease of keys leading into stalking bass lures and aligning riff and vocal growls, the track twists and shouts with an old school rock and R&B devilry to also ignite ears and emotions, though it in turn is just an appetiser for the majesty of (Un)happy Home. Instantly holding a delicious whiff of The Mighty Lemon Drops to its net of melodic enterprise, the song prowls and strides with switching adventure to sculpt a dynamic and insatiable stomp of punk ‘n’ roll tenacity and adventure. Everything about the album’s best track, from growly vocals to spicy riffs, seductive low toned bass to crisp rhythms, is pure contagious persuasion.

   Pretty Blue Eyes swiftly keeps the levels flying high with its raw and jangly endeavour, the song seemingly bred from the seeds which early Orange Juice and Josef K employed so well. It is a compelling encounter which rather than grab the psyche by the collar slowly burns its way into causing its subsequent arousal. Igniting an instant reaction is no problem for Texas Lullaby though, the track from its tantalising melody washed jangle brewing up and growing into an impossibly addictive and irresistible chorus. At that moment there is a pungently healthy Skids air to the song but a flavour soon transformed into a Lonewolves tapestry of emotion and lingering persuasion for another massive peak to the increasingly impressing album.

     Lost Songs of the Confederacy is brought to a close by the gentle melodic stroking of A Step Away from Home, a strongly evocative and pleasing prospect but another not quite equipped to match songs like the one before it. Nevertheless it still leaves ears content and pleasure full as it brings a ‘lost son’ of an album home into the hearts of the band’s fans. This is an album which is much more than a memory trip just for fans though, its daring and inventive drama a certain lure for those unaware of James King and the Lonewolves. It has been a long wait but boy was it worth it for them and us.

Lost Songs of the Confederacy is out via Stereogram Recordings now digitally with a vinyl version available from November 10th. Find out more @ http://www.stereogramrecordings.co.uk/audio/lost-songs-confederacy/

https://www.facebook.com/JamesKingLonewolves

RingMaster 30/10/2014

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Late Cambrian – Golden Time

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Our introduction to US indie rock band Late Cambrian came with their Social Season EP and became a lustful attraction through second album Peach, a release offering a thrilling dance of vibrant personality with matching sounds and imagination. It was an encounter of at times stunning brilliance within a constantly refreshing and warm temptation which stirred up the passions within seconds of contact. Now the band returns with its successor Golden Time, a release bred from the same eclectic invention and making a potent first impression, but working with a slower more sultry seduction and smouldering pop vivacity reaches the same captivating heights. The album reveals another leap in songwriting and sound maturity without relinquishing the bands almost mischievous use of hooks and melodic grooves. It takes its time to reveal all its depths but Golden Time emerges as another irresistible proposition from the Brooklyn quartet.

Late Cambrian has continued to make impressive marks from debut album The Last Concert released in 2011, onwards. Their Social Season EP of the following year raised the bar and bred one of their most successful and greedily devoured songs to date, Ryan Gosling. It was with Peach though that John N Wlaysewski (lead vocals, guitars, synth, percussion), Nunzio Moudatsos (bass, backing vocals), and Olive ‘O’ Hui (vocals, synth) sparked a much stronger and global spotlight. Now with the addition of drummer Alex to its line-up, the band offers a new tantalising treat with Golden Time. The band has often been compared to Wheatus, who Late Cambrian are touring the UK and Europe with as this review is posted, but the new album shows a unique and distinctive bloom to its summery sound and presence, which flourishes in that maturity spoken off earlier.

The PledgeMusic funded release opens with an immediately enthralling and virulently infectious Throwing Shade. As soon as guitar stabs, with a tone quite distinctive to the band, crosses ears there is a warm glow in emotions and imagination bred from past experiences with Late Cambrian’s invention. There is the quirky manner and enterprise which fuelled the last album on immediate show but also a melodic elegance and relish which provides new scenery to indulge in. The welcoming and harmonically bracing vocals of Wlaysewski backed by Moudatsos and O, embrace like an old friend but again with a new hue to their enterprise and stature. It is a thrilling entrance which the song reinforces across its length with a transfixing wash of radiant keys and punchy rhythms, but it is the Steely Dan like caress, vocally and musically, which steals the deal.

The following title track is no less compelling and invigorating. Electronic pulses lead to a coaxing guitar twang, which in turn moves into a bold stride of crisp rhythms across rich and magnetic melodies. The song’s title fits the sound Golden Time album Artworkwithin it perfectly, the duet of vocals between Wlaysewski and O as seductive and bright as the feisty pop melodies dancing around them. Again there is a contagion to the song which is inescapable for ears and an energy enslaving feet but it is its melodic swing that ignites another hungry urge in an already keen appetite.

Illamasqua swiftly installs its insatiable persuasion next, rhythms and vocals the prime lure initially, before the song slips into a tenacious stride of jabbing beats and lively yet sultry keys. As with many songs on the album, there is an instant familiar breath and touch to it which by the close you realise is simply from the band having their own distinct sound and presence. Also noticeable is that the song hints it has a fire to expel but instead remains in its enjoyable smouldering. This happens a few times across Golden Times and though at times you wonder how things would go if the band had ignited that extra mystery spark, the album flourishes in its inventively controlled and imaginative calm.

Both Game Show and Now keep the creative and appealing flames in ears and emotions sizzling. The first is a gentle canter of a song with potent and varied vocals against eclectic melodies and unpredictable endeavour, all flirting around a deliciously throaty bassline, whilst the second flows with a slow seducing of mellow yet vivacious vocals within a web of sharp hooks aligned to wispy blues kissed melodies. Though neither quite grips the heights of certainly the opening pair of tracks, both shine with a blaze of charm and bold imagination before making way for the thrilling romp of Objects May Appear. Big riffs and beats dance with ears straight away, their tango irresistible and only enhanced with the joining of similarly jaunty vocals from the band in turn. There is no escape for body, voice, and emotions to the album’s anthemic lure, the track a beguiling and fascinating stomp taking best song honours.

DYBIL with its crystaline melodies alongside riveting vocals and harmonies, provides a powerful romance for ears and senses to immerse in and passions to grow for whilst the following acoustic hug of the emotive Montauk simply whisks the imagination off on a seductive waltz to leave satisfaction brimming. Both reveal more of the evolution in, and growth of, enterprise and songwriting within the band before Shiny Cars brings the album to a healthy close. The outstanding final song has a thick and heavy resonance absent from much of what came before which again only offers another enjoyable shade to the album, whilst it’s gentler but lively vocals and melodic adventure only declares that this is a band coming of age.

There is no go for the jugular stand-out on Golden Time, no jaw dropper like Ryan Gosling or Wolf, but every track has a body and heart which outshines plenty of Late Cambrian’s impressive catalogue and combine for the band’s finest moment yet. For beautifully sculpted and dramatically radiant rock pop it is hard to think of many better offerings this year than Golden Times.

Golden Time will be available in November, for more details and remaining dates on their tour with Wheatus and  MC Frontalot go to http://www.latecambrian.com/

https://www.facebook.com/LateCambrian

RingMaster 17/10/2014

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Jacksons Warehouse – Right Here, Right Now

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A constant source of intelligent hook laden songs as thick in passion as they are in insatiable infectiousness, UK rock band Jacksons Warehouse has also shown the ability to write resourceful flights of emotional temptation, and maybe none finer than new single Right Here, Right Now. With an underlying energy and contagion which scoops up feet and emotions in its keen arms, the song is a mesmeric croon of sound and vocals which mix the attractive hooks the band are renowned for with a fresh expansive flight of emotive and sonic expression.

Formed in 2004, the Basildon band has constantly increased their fan base and acclaim through a parade of addiction sparking singles such as the brilliant Hotel by the Sea and their acclaimed and imposingly impressive debut album Homes Next To Houses of 2012. Songs seemingly flow from the minds and talent of the band like water drops from a leaking tap, a constant supply of always attention grabbing offerings which leave a lingering persuasion in varying degrees. Right Here, Right Now is one of their releases which make the strongest impact on ears and imagination, its mellow yet fiery presence a provocative embrace to hungrily immerse in.Shark

Crisp inviting beats from Cy Chant enticingly bait ears first, their gait setting down the keen energy kissed spine of the song. They are soon wrapped in elegant melodies and a darker bass tone, their addition laying down an emotive canvas for the distinctive voice of guitarist Stuart Brown to paint the song’s narrative and heart upon. The slight warble to his husky tones lies perfectly with the almost ethereal caress of keys from Simon Brown and the more intense but as warm strokes of enterprise from the guitars of Marc Barnacle and Stu. It is a transfixing incitement, the sultry glaze of sound tempered skilfully by the shadowed presence and tempting of bass sculpted by Rich Hawkins. The song may be a slower stroll than usually crafted by the band but its infectiousness is just as potent and full, vocally and musically the track almost anthemic in its effect on feet and emotions.

Right Here, Right Now is a treat of a song and marks a new twist in the creativity of a band already no strangers to acclaim if still yet to find the break-through into the strongest spotlight. The new single will do Jacksons Warehouse no harm in that direction though.

Right Here, Right Now is released October 13th

https://www.facebook.com/JACKSONSWAREHOUSE

RingMaster 22/09/2014

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Body Futures – Brand New Silhouettes

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Mischievous, unpredictable, and relentlessly adventurous, Brand New Silhouettes is a debut which swiftly sets its creators apart from the crowd. The first album from US indie rock pop band Body Futures, the scintillating encounter is a delightfully warped and devilishly captivating collection of songs which seduce the imagination with the creative innocence of the playground and the adventurous revelry of illicit moments behind the school bike shed. To that there is a captivating mix of feverish ideation and exploratory maturity which turns every track into a unique emprise of ingenuity. The album is simply glorious which is destined to head best album lists and make the Wisconsin band one of your new best friends and lustful obsessions.

Formed in 2012, Body Futures took their time before stepping into a spotlight, taking their first year writing and rehearsing before making a live debut in 2013. Consisting of vocalist Dixie Jacobs (ex- White, Wrench, Conservatory), guitarist/vocalist Christopher Maury (ex-Five Mod Four), bassist/vocalist Michael Wojtasiak (ex-Everybody at Midnight), and vocalist/drummer D.J. Hostettler (ex- IfIHadAHiFi), Body Futures linked up with Latest Flame Records before entering Howl Street Studios to record their album with Shane Hochstetler earlier this year. What has emerged is one of the most riveting and exciting introductions to a band in a long time, certainly in the realms of indie and pop rock.

The Milwaukee quartet instantly engage ears and thoughts with opener Hooks & Eyes, the harmonically aflame vocals of Jacobs a vibrant caress to which the more unbalanced expressive tones of Hostettler bring a delicious almost crazed accompaniment. Rhythms jab within the appealing blend whist riffs carry a jagged attitude and the bass a darker throat to the enticement. It is not the most startling song to leap at the senses but a vivacious start to the album with its Weezer like festivity and slightly frenzied vocal glow which reminds of eighties band Girls At their Best.

Things move up another step with the following When You Had A Jaw and even further with A Complete Divorce straight after. The first of the pair with its great mix of male and female led vocals again carries that eighties essence, LFR-44-cover-300x300the same band as reminded of in its predecessor coming to thoughts as well as fellow US band Late Cambrian. The bouncy chorus and anthemic call of the song makes for a ridiculously catchy tempting but the band mingles it with a muddled flame of sonic agitation and atmospheric intrigue which turns the track into a whole other type of creative bedlam before closing out on the irresistible romp which set it off. It is a clever piece of songwriting and sonic incitement but soon left in the shadow of its successor. The third song starts with Jacobs alone, voice revealing more of its depths before being paced by the absorbing tones of Wojtasiak’s bass and subsequently an evocative glaze of guitar. The track is a ‘regular’ proposition initially but soon blessed by shards of discord kissed guitar resonance and a delicious flow of vocal harmonies. Thoughts of The Passions and Jingo come to the fore here, the latter the one band which most comes close to the inventive majesty of Body Futures.

From the first big peak of the album, the band dances with ears and passions through the feisty beauty of That’s So Church, its enthralling swing of hooks and beats as gripping as the mouth-watering vocals. By now you expect a little of the unexpected and the track certainly offers that with a closing discord lilted twist of inventive drama before making way for the more reserved melodic caress of Is The Skeleton A Weapon? The song smoulders and moves engagingly with a sixties teasing pop charm but along rails of sonic causticity which adds that perpetual tinge of surprise which roams the release. Not the strongest of the songs on the album but one to lick lips over all the same, it is followed by (That’s A) Big Smile (for Someone About to Drown) and its starting blaze of Sex Pistols seeded guitar and riffery. The track proceeds to jangle and rile up the passions with clashing but beautifully merged punk spiced vocals, predatory rabidity, and the melodic resourcefulness of Jacobs’ synth and autoharp prowess and of course her mesmeric vocals. Imagine Devo meets Morningwood and you get the gist of the beauty of the song which triggers another ascent in the album’s exploration and might.

The opening ‘Psycho Killer’ like lure of bass which opens up Save the Clock Tower is potent bait alone but with the military seeded rhythms and stabbing riffing soon courting the magnetic web being cast, the track is soon in irresistible control. Jacobs walks alone through it all, her voice and keys seducing from within the compelling trap like a solitary figure in the midst of an addictive alchemy, but she is really the puppeteer urging and pulling the listener into the concussive and at time disorientating maelstrom of sound and invention. It is a stunning track which is swiftly equalled by the similarly beautifully deranged fascination of Phantom Patterns Arson. Running with a pop punk energy and virulence, the track is as jagged and irritable as it is melodically rampant, vocals and keys a relentless temptation within the more antagonistically captivating web of rhythms and guitar endeavour.

Sha Na Na: Clone Project Alpha is a song about Elmer Edward Solly, an escaped convict who masqueraded as a dead member of Sha Na Na, and just as frantically warped as the other pinnacles of the album. Lurching around with the will and intensity of a Dervish yet still making time to smooch with ears through melodic fondling, the song is impossibly infectious and unique, a track to rival Save the Clock Tower though both have to bow to What Bugs Eat. The penultimate song of the album, it is an immediately challenging fusion of two extremes which simply thrills. On one side there is the vocal pop toxicity of Jacobs alongside acidic yet warming melodies and on the other, a caustic discord spawned rapacity of sound which breeds hooks and riffs which scamper over the senses with the irritancy of a thousand insects. It is a simply bewildering and brilliant union as the sides merge in a bedlam of enterprise and ingenuity

The album finishes on the thick and rich psychedelic sunset of The Spanish of Scraping, a track with a sultry air but unafraid to interrupt with moments of poetic lunacy. It is an outstanding end to a quite brilliant album, Brand New Silhouettes destined to be a marker for indie rock and pop to come you sense as it twists its mischief through ears.

Though not in sound, there is one band which Body Futures reminds of in unique invention and the distinctness of the sounds they can conjure, and that is Talking Heads and we all know what happened to them.

Brand New Silhouettes is available now on vinyl and digitally via Latest Flame Records @ http://www.latestflame.com/content/lfr-44/ and @ http://bodyfutures.bandcamp.com/album/brand-new-silhouettes

https://www.facebook.com/BodyFutures

9/10

RingMaster 13/08/2014

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