The Body Politic – Egressor

TBP-July-2014-Promos-3344

As sonically savage as it is melodically radiant, Egressor provides one sizeable tempest of aggression, passion, and technical invention which thrusts Canadian progressive metallers The Body Politic into a whole new spotlight. The EP is a furious yet seductive storm which is as accomplished and gripping in its senses ravaging enterprise as it is in its rich croon of melodic and harmonic endeavour. The six track encounter provides a blistering fascination and unpredictable adventure which took a short while to reveal all its glories but emerged as another of the rigorously compelling events of the year.

Coming out of Vancouver Island and taking their name from the Clive Barker short story, The Body Politic made an attention grabbing mark with their well-received debut album All Too Human in 2011. Their sound entangles the nuances and freedom of jazz, which most members of the band studied at Vancouver Island University, with the colourful exploration of progressive metal and the predatory voracity of metalcore. It is a striking blend, skilfully twisted into an imagination binding storm as evidenced by Egressor. Following a period which has seen the band undertake several Canadian tours and share stages with the likes of Tesseract, Protest The Hero, and Scale The Summit, the new EP suggests it holds the spark to wider recognition as it sets the band out from the crowd.

The release impresses in many aspects, the technical craft, explosive adventure to the songwriting, and the striking vocals of Sam Britton the most striking of these. Produced by Spencer Bowman, the release opens with Vitam Agere. It EP Cover - Body Politic - Egressor - 2014is a haunting instrumental piece, emotion spilling keys stroking ears as a sonic wind grazes the senses. The restrained entrance soon brews up a forcible and portentous coaxing as guitars and rhythms sculpt a climactic air which is still soaked in that initial haunted, almost apocalyptic texture. The track flows straight into Armature, the track an immediate onslaught of eventful and demanding rhythms aligned to scorching grooves and ragged riffs. Driven by the coarse scowls of bassist Jesse Janzen, his tones as aggressive as the metalcore spine of the track, the song swiftly reveals potent scenery of raw persuasion from the riffs of Matt Aasen and Dan Montgomery alongside the thumping beats of Spencer Bowman. This onslaught is tempered by the technical flair and imagination the guitarists also unleash and the exceptional clean vocals of Britton, his entrance the final piece in the jigsaw bringing the track alive. As soon realised every moment is just an instance in the journey of a song, the starter proceeding to steer ears and emotions through avenues of raucous passion and ingenious technical enterprise, all soaked in the emotive keys of Rob Wilkinson.

It is an imposing and impressing start but merely a taster of greater things to come, instantly shown by the following All Hands. Electro radiance sets the track off before a torrent of contagious jagged riffs and the brawling tones of Janzen erupt, their confrontation swiftly tempered and complimented by the smooth flow of Britton’s delivery. The song then twists into an enthralling schizophrenic dance of psychotic rhythms and similarly bred sonic imagination, both aspects flirting with and chewing on thoughts and senses respectively. It is a glorious turn in the song before it slips back into its melodic fire bound in hostile intent. The track is sensational, a constant flood of creative intrigue and bold invention unafraid to wrong-foot and confront the listener.

Swing For The Fences has the task of following the EP’s first highlight and does so with antagonistic gusto. Grooves and riffs climb over the psyche from the off before relaxing into a melodic embrace led by Britton’s refreshing tones. Keys and melodies wrap emotive arms around ears before the track combines its dark and light side for another absorbing flight of riveting imagination and honest passion. Both sides of the vocals impress but it is the guitars which push passions from ardour into a lust for the song, their almost cryptic invention as bewildering as it is bewitching and never allow senses and thoughts to settle and get a firm hold of the swirl of sonic acidity and bedlamic enterprise at the heart of the track.

In song and EP though, every part of the band combines to create spellbinding torrents of adventure and intent, keys and bass as vocal in their own way as the rhythmic and sonic character of tracks. Colqhoun instantly proves the point, the throaty lure of Janzen’s bass and the seducing presence of Wilkinson’s keys potent and expressive textures in the song’s exploration. Though not as dramatically gripping as its two predecessors, it casts a seriously rewarding and imagination provoking canvas coloured by raw metal and jazz rock hues, before making way for the closing Irradiate. The final track takes its initial crystalline melodies into a turbulent yet infectiously captivating furnace of adversarial angst and provocation, shadows and light hurling themselves around each other through the stunning skill and imagination of the band.

The track is a thrilling end to an outstanding release, one with the flesh and soul to push The Body Politic to the forefront of progressive metal.

The Egressor EP is available now digitally as a name your price download and on CD @ http://thebodypolitic.bandcamp.com/

http://www.thebodypolitic.ca/

RingMaster 17/09/2014

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The Contortionist – Language

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Formed in 2007, US progressive metallers The Contortionist have been no strangers to twisting the senses and psyche of fans with their unpredictable weaves and startling structures of sound and ideation. Previous albums in the shape of their startling 2010 debut Exoplanet and even more so the rigorously acclaimed Intrinsic two years later, took the metal scene by the scruff of the neck with their increasingly imposing and intricately technical tapestries. Now the Indianapolis sextet has unveiled their finest moment yet, the exhaustingly compelling Language.

The band’s first studio album with new vocalist Michael Lessard (Last Chance to Reason), who replaced Jonathan Carpenter when he left the band last year, Language spins a startling web which swiftly immerses ears and imagination from its opening seconds. Produced by Jamie King (Between the Buried and Me, He Is Legend, The Human Abstract), the album seduces from the first breath of The Source, Lessard instantly caressing the senses with his mesmeric tones as keys emerge elegantly around him. As the song grows, so does its captivation as impassioned melodies simultaneously soar across and intimately shape the aural narrative. It is a gorgeous seducing with Lessard exceptional, and right away matched by the distinctly different Language I: Intuition.

Guitars tenderly coax the imagination from the very start, their thought binding enterprise soon aided by flowing harmonies and subsequently an alluring throaty bass tone amidst a soak of expressive keys cast by Eric Guenther. Grumbles of raw vocals taunt in the background at times but the track ultimately glides imperiously over ears framed by the inventive beats of Joey Baca and resourcefully shadowed bass prowess of Jordan Eberhardt. The snarl and agitation within the song rises closer to the surface as the track moves towards Language II: Conspire, the guitars of Robby Baca and Cameron Maynard at times as predatory as they are enchanting. Its successor seamless steps from its embrace with a jagged bait of riffs and an increasingly predatory voice to the bass, coarse vocal growls also stepping forward from within the brewing maelstrom. The track proceeds to prowl and size up its recipient with death metal malevolence and caustically coated progressive imagination twisted into something uniquely exploratory and individual to the band.

Integration opens with a jazzy wind of keys which is emulated by the creative sculpting of guitar intrigue and swinging rhythmic temptation. As the mellow tones of Lessard flow there is a conflicting yet perfectly harmonious merger of LANGUAGE COVERantagonistic and entrancing climates, opposites uniting for a provocative emprise of sound and intent. Thoughts of Karnivool and Between The Buried And Me offer hints as does Cynic as the song twists and evolves with every incendiary note and impacting syllable but again it is merely spice to an ingenuity owned solely by the Indiana six-piece.

Both the spellbinding grace and beauty of Thrive and the following Primordial Sound enslave ears and thoughts, the first a scintillating journey through an evocative scenery of tenacious rhythms and smouldering drama crafted by a tempest of guitar invention and sonic passion. Basking in a simmering keys drawn atmosphere veined by vibrantly melodic flames, the track also involves a technically explosive turbulence which is as flirtatious as it is intimidating. It is the pinnacle of the album, a peak matched straight away by the second of the two songs. Primordial Sound opens on another exceptional vocal caress from Lessard, guitar and bass courting his radiant tones with their own dazzling voice and expression, all wrapped in a magnetic wash of keys. The song is sensational, another innovative and remarkably imaginative binding of light and shadows.

It is fair to say that Lessard brings a Deftones like air to parts of the album, and no more so than in Arise, his dulcet tones a smooth glaze over the song’s presence and theme. This is enhanced by the equally luscious sounds around him; that is until a bestial expulsion drives vocals into a rapacious metalcore like roar and riffs and hooks into a heavily barbed torrent of addictive persuasion. The track continues the established high plateau which is maintained by the cinematic theatre and haunting colour of Ebb & Flow. The keys of Guenther alone paint an engrossing canvas for the imagination to explore, one given richer impacting depth by the cinematic hues and shadows of guitar which in turn create a tempestuous threat of intensity and a temptation of skilled enterprise.

Its success is equalled by the spellbinding majesty of The Parable. The final song on the album is a thick blaze of sonic and technical ingenuity hugged by the ever refreshing vocal brilliance of Lessard and band. It is a swirling eddy of beauty, skill, and exploration within a kinetic incitement of rhythms and rousing intensity, a sensational flurry of invention which almost bewilders as it seduces.

With so much going on and to be explored, Language is not as instant a triumph as other releases but with focus and time emerges explosively rewarding and intensively exhilarating. As much as their previous albums were impressive, you can almost say that The Contortionist has come of age with their new offering, suggesting a new template for progressive metal to contemplate with its masterful presence.

Language is available from 16th September via eOne Music / Good Fight Music.

https://www.facebook.com/thecontortionist

RingMaster 16/09/2014

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Dioramic – Supra

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There is a clutch of bands with the imagination and mastery to combine mouth-watering beauty and voracious aggression in one heavily imposing proposition but few able to conjure the mesmeric seduction and creative ferocity as found on Supra, the new album from German metallers Dioramic. The bands third full-length release is an extraordinary exploration of light and dark textures, technical and feral ingenuity, and breath-taking invention. One of the most scintillating, awe inspiring encounters in recent years.

The quartet from Kaiserslautern is no strangers to making jaws drop in response to their craft and adventure, previous albums Phase Of Perplexity and Technicolor in 2004 and 2010 respectively, greedily received but Supra finds the band at a whole new plateau of sonic alchemy. The album was begun in 2011 but a line-up change due to drummer Anton Zaslavski’s success with his own Grammy award winning project Zedd, meaning he had little time to devote to Dioramic, halted the recording of the Supra. Paul Seidel (War From A Harlot’s Mouth, The Ocean) was recruited to take up the sticks in the band, with the album subsequently completed last year. Released via Pelagic Records, it now makes its stunning entrance into the world and is set to draw a new template for others to be inspired by through its multi genre embracing fury of progressive rock and metal.

Describing the sound of band and album is an on-going task as each track takes ears and emotions down a new richly flavoursome avenue in the general riveting landscape of the release. Imagine a mix of Muse, The Ocean, Between The Buried And Me, and Australian band Voyager and you get a glimpse of the invention of Dioramic. From its first moments Supra is gripping attention and imagination, the opening seconds of Xibalban a tempting lure which expands rapidly into a tempest of muscular intimidation from riffs and rhythms alongside a sumptuous beauty from vocals and expressive melodies. The track manages to cast a hazy warmth and radiance within a voracious wall of sound and intimidation, keeping both wrapped in a clarity which astounds and spellbinds. At times it is seeded in progressive metal, in others a metalcore rage, whilst throughout there is a melodic sun of enterprise and provocative intrigue, and we have not mentioned the thrash and groove metal twists which amongst many enter the bewitching narrative of the track.

The stunning start is straight away matched by the slightly more merciful but no less gripping Carpets On The Walls. It opens with a gentle melodic caress which in no time turns into Meshuggah like voracity and technical emprise clad Bildschirmfoto 2014-07-20 um 21.16.10in whispers of theatrical drama and sublime imagination. It is a riveting start which evolves into a glorious melodic soar of vocals from guitarist Arkadi Zaslavski and sonic endeavour from him and fellow string exploiter Alexander Mauch, the encounter taking ears on yet another unexpected and unpredictable flight.

Two tracks in and the release is a breath-taking encounter, one not prepared to take its foot off the pedal of creative tenacity as shown by the following The Calm Before and The Storm. The first as suspected from its title is a gentler glide than its predecessors, a restrained glaze of melody enriched vocals within a portentous atmosphere. In that provocative temptation though, the track explodes into climactic and turbulent roars which stirs up the hostility in rhythms and senses searing riffs, not forgetting the gloriously carnivorous tone of Max Nicklas’ bass, before relaxing back into the ambient poetry of the song’s breath. It is a bewitching encounter setting up its successor perfectly, though the following track does not quite go for the jugular musically as expected. Vocally though it is initially an uncompromising fury, antagonistic squalls prowling the psyche as stabbing riffs and fiercely imposing rhythms set a commanding cage. Opposites and extremes again toy with ears and thoughts, a sublime wash of vocal harmonies and melodic elegance finding their potent place in the tempest.

Even greater heights are breached by Worth and Big Pump, each a new torrent of technical vivacity and passion igniting invention. From its opening breath, the first of the two breeds a blistering contagion to soak ears and emotions, expressive clean vocals aligned to deeply gripping hooks and rhythms binding ears in their infectious suasion. Zaslavski finds a Matt Bellamy like presence to his voice which is supported just as magnetically by the tones of the rest of the band within the cradle of spikey riffs and radiant melodies. Muse meets Palms with Periphery looking on; it is a sublime piece of songwriting and its sultry realisation, matched by the more predatory second of the two. Riffs snarl and challenge from the first swipe of similarly aggressive rhythms, their bordering on hostile presence taken into rawer confrontation by the aggression driven vocals. The track proceeds to roar and seduce the senses, the intricate spirals of sonic endeavour and rhythmic agitation a fascinating and thrilling canvas for the corrosive vocals to bellow from. As expected the track evolves and twists before ears for yet one more absorbing and exhilarating provocation.

Melancholia offers exactly what is says on the tin, its evocative coaxing covered in emotive shadows and vocal elegance as keys spread their equally passion washed narrative. It is an engrossing basking for senses and thoughts before the inventive maelstrom of Logbook comes in, once more vocal harmonies and melodic flames encased in rugged rhythmic walls and scarring riffery for an astonishing drama fuelled emprise.

The album ends with Vortex Reflex, a further smouldering immersion into the vocal mellowness and irresistible melodic charm which seduces across the whole album, within the rhythmic ingenuity and sonic fire which equally makes Supra one of the pinnacles of the year. The album is quite simply an illustrious encounter with Dioramic setting new plateaus for others to aspire to.

Supra is available through Pelagic Records now digitally, on limited coloured vinyl edition, and CD which comes with an extra DVD with live material, studio reports and interviews @ http://pelagic-records.com/cds/

https://www.facebook.com/dioramic  

10/10

RingMaster 15/09/2014

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We All Die (laughing) – Tentoonstelling

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After their riveting and extraordinary album Thoughtscanning of last year, the appetite for something more from We All Die (laughing) has been the epitome of hunger. It is a want and need now richly satisfied by the band’s new offering, the Tentoonstelling EP, well certainly by half of it. Consisting of two tracks, one from the duo of Déhà (Maladie, COAG) and Arno Strobl (Carnival In Coal, 6:33) and a second piece by Mathieu Drouet, a French photographer for whom We All Die (laughing) composed the lead track, it is a provocative encounter of instrumental temptation which pushes the imagination into dark and sinister landscapes.

When asked by Drouet to contribute a track to a contemporary art project for his Grande Plage exhibition planned for January 2015, We All Die (laughing) crafted the instrumental Variation on the scanning of thoughts, a piece 760137644422_TOX038_We-All-Die-(laughing)_Artwork_600x600inspired by and a companion to the band’s extraordinary one track album. The exhibition itself is based on photography of Drouet which the artist ‘considers worth being used as cover artwork for music releases’. Consisting of twelve pieces, he chose a similar number of bands to contribute a track (also including The Lumberjack Feedback) of which a single copy 12″ EP would be released with one of his pictures as the artwork along with an’ experimental audio rendition of the photography’s digital file’s data’, basically an aural portrait of the picture cloaking the release.

Variation on the scanning of thoughts is a piano sculpted exploration, a shadowed and brooding suggestiveness which wraps seductively around the senses and imagination whilst soaking both with melancholic expression. Noir lit jazz scenery colours the evocative canvas throughout whilst sharing hues with a more choral persuasion, their entwining suggestiveness a haunting embrace within the oppressive atmosphere. The press release with the EP declares the track as more depressive than the band’s adventure upon Thoughtscanning which is easy to agree with, yet as the music permeates ears and emotions there is also an imposing beauty and stark elegance which ignites the warmth of hope in song and reactions. As always with the band, it is a healthily long piece which provides a template for the listener’s imagination to fill and colour whilst emotionally it is a provocation which is as cinematic in drama as it is intimate.

The following Grande Plage, OP. 1, Movement #1: Le Noir from Drouet is the complete opposite and whilst you can understand and respect its breeding, the track is an underwhelming challenge. A sonic expanse of electronic smog, a static wave which ebbs and flows but makes for a constant irritant, the track is a ten minute excuse to return to the majesty of its predecessor. Again it is a piece which will inspire or push away individual thoughts and imaginations, with ours unreceptive, but it is a pale if initially intriguing companion against the magnificence of the lead track and the musical alchemy of We All Die (laughing).

Tentoonstelling is available now Kaotoxin Records @ via http://listen.kaotoxin.com/album/tentoonstelling

https://www.facebook.com/wealldielaughing

Check out the excellent photography of Mathieu Drouet @ http://www.mathieu-drouet.com/

For the track Variation on the scanning of thoughts 10/10

RingMaster 21/08/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Edge of Haze – Illumine

(c) Olli Kiikkilä

(c) Olli Kiikkilä

As much as there is a creative adventure and aggressively provocative breath to Illumine, the new album from Finnish metallers Edge of Haze, there is also a unique and mesmeric charm to its melodic metal which sets it and its creators distinctly away from the crowd. It makes for a tremendously striking proposition which brews up an atmospheric embrace through the entwining of progressive and alternative metal with a melodic and ambient fuelling. The Espoo quintet’s sound is a thick and vibrantly textured proposal which is as thrillingly adept at seducing or savaging the senses. From this the band’s second album emerges as a masterful treat which like an emotive sea laps upon the ears and imagination with varying intensities and successes whilst offering a perpetual enthralment of invention and irresistible persuasion.

The seeds of Edge of Haze begin with the metal band Damage, a project vocalist/bassist/guitarist Eero Maijala and drummer Janne Mieskonen began in 2007. Subsequently joined by guitarist Lenno Linjama two years later and with a couple of demos under their belt, the band expanded with the joining of keyboardist Akseli Savola and vocalist/guitarist Iivo Kaipainen which led to the renaming to Edge of Haze in 2010 as well as a change in direction sound wise, a new progressive and melodic strain of ideation and flavour merging with the heavier metal sound bred through Damage. The departure of Kaipainen led to the addition of Markus Hentunen as debut album Mirage begun its birth in 2011. Released the following year to strong acclaim, its success and presence is destined to pale against that of Illuminate such the latter’s riveting journey and potency. Loosely based on the book Escape From Camp 14 about a man living under a totalitarian regime that upon realising his submission to this life attempts an escape and sets out to find the landscape of his soul, Illumine musically and lyrically provides a fascinating presence which paints that theme’s journey with imagination sparking colour and thought involving prowess making a thrilling treat for ears.

Opening track Drawn releases a haunted whisper of ambience before guitars cast a provocative web of melodic expression courted by a just as magnetic keys spawned atmosphere. It is a potent start which is soon settling into a sturdy yet Cover artwarm stride, its sinew sculpted grooves seducing ears as the excellent tones of Hentunen work on the senses. His vocals are immediately compelling and masterful within the slightly tempestuous breath of the track, adding greater strength to the narrative and the impressive canvas below him. A soft and elegant drift of voice and sound brings another unexpected and intrigue ripe twist to the already absorbing and impressive emprise, the eventful track sparking thoughts and passions with sublime ease.

The Pyre brings an openly more aggressive and muscular proposition wrapped in a sinister and imposing climate of dark shadows and intent. As its title suggests, the song is a blaze of scorched sonic endeavour and rippling invention, its ravenous air entwined by a melodic beauty and that almost mesmeric vocal quality of Hentunen, which here is supported potently by the coarse growls of Maijala. The track continues to climb over the senses and imagination with an inescapable web of enslaving sounds, a solemnly flavoursome gothic darkness and drama aligning its lures to the voracious and seductive essences soaking the persistently evolving picture. Its heady almost oppressive design is powerfully contrasted by the melodic beauty of Urban Reverie, its opening gentle parade of rhythmic vivacity within a vocal and guitar spawned majesty providing an emotive urbanity which spreads throughout the imaginative coaxing terrain of the song.

The following Crushed is like a reality check to the dreams of its predecessor, riffs and rhythms an antagonistic stabbing from its opening second whilst snarl spewing grooves and vocal scowls add further predacious bait. The melodic and harmonic side of the track is equally as pungent in its voice and resourcefulness, Edge Of Haze able to merge both extremes whilst giving each a creative clarity which radiates its side of the drama. The scintillating maelstrom of ingenuity is first followed by the decent instrumental 3:30 A.M., its dystopian ambience another reminder to the tale’s political and social landscape, before Into The Red Sun makes its piano composed engrossing entrance. Over scenery of possible escape, Savola transfixes ears and thoughts before the track erupts into a powerful ball of sonic heat and creative tenacity. Riffs and grooves seduce with a slightly carnivorous texture before a relaxation of intensity makes a refined platform for Hentunen to lay his ever fascinating tones. Possibly not the most overall gripping track on the album, its every turn still brings an appetite filling adventure which tightly grips attention and stirs up greater hunger for track and album, its epic finale alone a creative alchemy.

Both Unlearn and A Storm At The River keep listener and release entwined, the first an exciting charge of energy and virulence coloured with celestial fire before unveiling the richest vein of hostility found on the album. Of course like all, the track is a series of moments seamlessly linked and united for a compelling and exhilarating incitement of ingenuity whilst its successor is a smouldering glide of emotive grace and evocative ambience woven into a melody fuelled flight of passion and reflection. The pair epitomise the complex structures and contagiously intricate flavours which paint every song, as mentioned every shift of a track’s body or thought a new expanse of pleasure and intrigue.

Illumine is concluded by firstly the fiery atmosphere and sultry sounds of Rainfall, its exploration bringing an emotional continent of insecurity and suffocating angst within the fluid movement of the song which easily combined being mellow and immersive with stormy and intimidating within a swoop of a chord or a caress of vocals. Final track A Newfound Horizon provides a ten minute journey of its own to bring the album’s musical and lyrical narrative to a powerful close. Again in all aspects the song merges serenades and croons with roars and inhospitable ambiences, its ridiculously addictive investigation of new lands and emotional extremes glorious.

Illumine is a sensational release, one where some tracks steal the heart more than others but each piece of the creative puzzle leaves ears basking, imagination devouring drama, and passions bursting with a want for more. Edge of Haze has made a striking statement for progressive and melodic metal, and you can only feel it will be the first of many ahead.

The self-released Illumine is available digitally and on CD now @ http://edgeofhaze.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/edgeofhaze

9/10

RingMaster 22/08/2014

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Escape The Cult – All You Need To

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All You Need To is a persistent little temptation, an album which admittedly did not really blow thoughts and senses away initially but did engage them in a pleasing and intriguing proposition. Away from its aural embrace though hooks and melodies, rhythmic twists and grooves kept swerving around the imagination and memory, all leading back to and revealing themselves as being bred by the debut album from Escape The Cult. The seven track encounter is still not an experience to leave you intensely awestruck but with its lingering and ingenious enterprise certainly enthrals as one of the year’s more exciting progressive metal propositions.

Escape The Cult is one of those super groups you read about, a collection of established musicians taking time out from their more recognisable exploits to explore new hopefully impressive avenues, something the quartet does with ease from start to finish. The brainchild of Kamlath bassist Peter G. Shallmin, Escape The Cult came to life in 2008 with its founder drawing on the qualities of vocalist Matthieu Romarin of Uneven Structure, guitarist Mike Wead from King Diamond/Mercyful Fate, and Primus/A Perfect Circle drummer Tim Alexander to help realise his vision of creating a progressive metal audio/visual experience. It has been a journey for the band to this point and for Shamlin who talked about the album saying “It was a dynamic and exciting start, with blood, sweat and tears shed throughout the process and a long exhausted preparation for the attack. Every day was worth to make it real. We were sincere in our ideas that are embodied in our debut.

The gentle but resourceful entrance of opener Backfired, with a bass twang courting spicy guitar enterprise, swiftly catches the imagination and though it is not a dramatic start to the album, an intrigued appetite for the song’s offering is

Created by Igor Omodei

Created by Igor Omodei

drawn. The distinctive tones of Romarin bring a familiar and passionate texture to the emerging narrative of the song, one never forceful or in a rush to challenge ears and thoughts but leaving inventive tendrils of melodies and strains of sonic incitement to infest the passions. It is a potent and riveting start to the album, basking in the renowned individual skills of its creators whilst forging a compelling and unique suasion of its own.

The following Clandestine opens with a muscular and aggressive threat which is soon tempered by an evocative heat of sonic colour and warm vocals. There is still an intensive weight to the rhythmic potency of Alexander though to keep senses on edge and balance out the almost Queens Of the Stone Age like sultriness coating the melodic exploration of the song. Grooves are seemingly slight in their bodies yet make for the most addictive and as mentioned earlier relentless temptations, the outstanding second track one of those which makes the most re-appearances in thoughts away from its source, whilst the flames of guitar endeavour from Wead transfixes as they scorch air and senses.

A definite pinnacle of the album, it is soon backed up by the gentle croon of I’m Absolute. With an immediately delicious web of hypnotic bass flirtation and the similarly mesmeric vocals of Romarin, the song sways and immerses ears in a smouldering and jazzy emprise of progressive fascination. The beats juggled by Alexander further captivate and ignite an already invigorating breath to a song, which as the album as a whole, does not explode in the passions but worms its way seductively into the psyche to forge an even more intensive bond.

Both the melodically tender Feel The Flight and the rapacious Tired Of The Past provide an absorbing canvas to lose one’s thoughts within, the first adding tense riffs and restrained yet incendiary grooves into its impassioned but mellow landscape. It is another where particular elements fire up ears and the passions rather than an overall combination but that united blend provides the embrace and rich foundation within which the sublime twists and essences can impress. Its successor is a feistier encounter in sound and intent which boils with imagination and unpredictability, preying on and tempting the listener with a provocatively charged invention which snarls and seduces with equal predation. An exceptional track binding ears in a thrilling adventure, it also sows seeds which blossom at a later date, though that is something truthfully which applies to all songs, as shown by the brilliant This Time Will Come. Hints of Alice In Chains and Tool, which have flirted with other songs too, make a rich enticement within the masterful blaze of intensive melodies and sonic acidity. There is also an underlying snarl and angst fuelled growl to the track which simply scintillates within the impressive and constantly evolving invention as it pushes itself to be the pinnacle of the release.

Where No Grown Up Grapes brings the album to a fine close with its web of heavy vocal and sonic passion. It is another where it simmers without lighting fires but then in a twist of a chord or rhythmic shuffle finds an enslaving idea or slither of imagination to set thoughts and passions ablaze. That sums up All You Need To as a whole, it at times simply pleasing with skilled ease and then striking with sheer genius and expectations slaughtering ingenuity. It all makes for an album which leaves a rich impression and presence with even deeper laid lures which prey on the listener later. How frequently Escape The Cult will be exploring ears and imagination ahead we will see with its members ‘day jobs’ etc. but anticipation and hunger for more is already breeding healthily thanks to All You Need To.

The self-released All You Need To is scheduled to be unveiled in September 2014.

www.facebook.com/EscapeTheCvlt

8.5/10

RingMaster 19/08/2014

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Mutagenocide – Devolve EP

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If UK metallers Mutagenocide have not reached your neck of the woods or gaze yet never fear they are coming with their ferocious and feverishly flavoured sound, certainly if new EP Devolve gets the breaks and attention it deserves. Made up of seven voracious onslaughts which rage and stampede with pure metal aggression, the release unleashes an unpredictability which is as compelling as the invention and array of styles which fuels its adventure. The band has been making a stir across the metal underground in the UK and now Devolve suggests the time is ripe for the quintet to find a wider intensive attention.

Oxford based, Mutagenocide showed their intent and brewing depth of sound with a self-titled debut in 2012, the four track EP a potent reinforcement of their already keenly followed and recognised live performances. Now the line-up of vocalist Jay Taylor, guitarists Pat Scott and Paul Clayton, bassist Tom Greenway, and drummer Ben Wilsker pounce with a provocation which suggests they are ready to stir up a countrywide hunger with the potential to fuel attention much further afield.

From the first swipe of sonic belligerence over a persistently winding flume of guitar, opener Hysteria has ears and appetite wide awake. It is a dramatic entrance which is soon twisted into a tempestuous charge of thrash bred antagonistic DEVOLVE COVERriffing and vicious rhythmic hostility, this ridden by the caustic vocal squalls of Taylor. But as is a constant across the whole release, it is merely a moment in an evolving landscape, grooves and addictive hooks as well as subsequent progressively seeded ideation, veining and working its way into the heart of the fierce and impressive incitement.

The immense start is swiftly emulated and surpassed by the title track, it also an immediate fury and explosive assault through ears. A melodic and progressive teasing plays within the demanding surge before merging into an addictive web of tenacious grooving and venomous melodic metal coaxing. It is a blistering mix which again seems to find a new avenue to investigate and contagious bait to expel within the unrelenting voracity of the song. It is a brilliant encounter which is full of drama and intrigue, incendiary craft and seductive predation, but most of all sheer compelling invention.

     Entombed and Swallowed makes a reserved entrance next, a guitar painting an emotive hue into an evocative atmosphere which carries no threat yet has an air of foreboding to it. It is the same as a melodic wind of progressive rock spicing opens up its narrative, guitars impressing with every expressive note but the darker shadows of the bass ensures a portentous tempering is lurking. That darkness seeps into the growing weight and punch of the rhythms before fuelling a corrosive maelstrom of acidic sonic endeavour, acutely jagged riffery, and an increasing spite to the commanding swings of Wilsker. Like a brawl instigated by Lamb of God and Sybreed with thoughts of Cambion also making their hints, but an aggressor with the poise and exploratory expression of melodic metal and the emprise of post metal, the track is a riveting blaze of adversarial emprise. It is soon outshone though by the similarly cultured but rigorously individual Half-Born, it’s closing seduction before a corrosive finale alone passion firing but as a whole proposition the song is a startling and ruggedly imposing and shifting triumph.

     Remeron Nightmares with its stomping thrash sculpted entrance and Wretched bring the release to a mighty conclusion. The first proceeds to spin a malevolent web of precision crafted inhospitable toxicity encased in a simultaneously intimidating and alluring storm, its presence as primal as it is intensively honed. Equipped with a familiar swagger, a sonic invention which leaves lips licked, and a primal virulence the track is a monstrous treat. The same which can almost be said about its successor, a final enthralling furnace of raw and hellacious enterprise which whilst lacking the stature and uniqueness of its predecessors, is still a mighty end to an outstanding triumph.

There is very little to put up against the Stu Mckay (Malevolence, Desolated, Ingested, Annotations Of An Autopsy, Eternal Lord) recorded and Tim Turan (Nuclear Blast, Candlelight Records) mastered release though a bit more variety to the admittedly excellent vocal delivery of Taylor would be welcome and interesting. It is a minor thing in a big thrilling step from Mutagenocide, a band you can expect to hear and see a lot more of ahead.

The Devolve EP is available now @ http://www.mutagenocide.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/mutagenocide

9/10

RingMaster 15/08/2014

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