In Love Your Mother – The Great Ape Project

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As well as holding gripping and inventive sounds, a song and release should be an adventure for ears and imagination to make the strongest connection, and they do not come more of a creative and challenging emprise than The Great Ape Project from Swizz trio In Love Your Mother. The album is a riveting and invigorating maelstrom of sound and deranged invention which leaves no stone unturned or bedlamic idea left in the shadows. Cramming eighteen songs in just over thirty minutes of creative mayhem means the album warrants and needs full attention so as not to miss any of the exhilarating drama within tracks which range from fourteen seconds to just short of four minutes in length. But the rewards are unrelenting and furiously imposing in one of the albums of the year.

Hailing from Zürich, the trio of guitarist/vocalist Valentin Baumgartner, bassist/vocalist Amedeo Mauriello, and drummer Andrea Tinner, unleash a sound which reaps the essences of mathcore and progressive metal and filters it through a vat of avant-garde, grindcore, and metalcore ingenuity. It comes out as a sound which can be best described as The Dillinger Escape Plan and System of a Down meets Destrage, Toumaï, and Kontrust yet isn’t like that either. It is a unique concoction which flirts and dances with senses as it brutalises them, and quite irresistible.

Themed by the sick and bad world our mothers warned us of, In Love Your Mother start the album and examination with The Mother Song. A thirty second tsunami of vocal causticity and rhythmic hostility speared by a sonic spite and toxic groove which all combines for a furious and concussive but appetite inflaming onslaught. Its swift assault is followed by the less intensive but no more lightweight 2116@#1916. It is immediately contagious, something alone impressive such its brevity of length, a slice of coarsely melodic and respectfully corrosive groove metal which slips agreeably before the vicious presence of We’re Gonna Dance Till Everyone Is Naked And Fallen Apart takes over. A metalcore canvas of vocals and maliciousness is soon twisted and bound in a weave of unpredictable and schizophrenic invention, the guitar of Baumgartner scything and spearing the heart of the tempest with breath-taking and psyche addling ingenuity. It is a manic endeavour matched by the swinging arms and prods of Tinner and the throaty creative predation of Mauriello. The longest song on the album, it explores and evolves with every second, bewitching and bewildering ears with almost hostile intent. The beauty of this and all songs, is the seamless and fluid transitions, one moment a bestial rampancy becomes a seductive croon and melodic embrace in another, all without a twitch of uncertainty or flex of ILYM_TGAP_albumcoverrandomness.

Johnny Rocket Is Not Dead launches its majestic uncompromising tirade next, grooves and bass temptation as eager and impacting as the vocal squalls and twisted sonic probing aligning to a rhythmic badgering. It is only one turn in the fifty second odd track though, as mentioned earlier every chord and jab of drums the detour to new and generally enthralling bliss, as evidenced no more potently than in Signs Of A Medium Life which splits the two parts of the title track. A hardcore/grind fuelled provocation, the track savages and pounds on the senses from the off. Riffs and beats show no mercy within the stalking gait of the song nor the blistering vocal roar which also has some restraint in its confrontation. Through the storm though, there are small and larger slithers of inventive majesty which enthral as much as the bruising thrust of the song.

The two bits of The Great Ape Project grab the hunger inspired already by band and album, but are swiftly surpassed by the brilliance of the also two parted Wish Me An Ocean, the first of its two scintillating movements a furnace of sonic fire and blistering psychotic beauty steered superbly by bass and drums. From the hasty senses foraging of its counterpart and the haunting piano sculpted drama of Drop The Back Of The Line, In Love Your Mother ignite another major blaze with Signs Of A Real Life. Striding forcibly with rhythmic and sonic nostrils flaring, the track soon slips into something more cantankerous and intimidating, crawling over senses and thoughts with a rabid breath and bestial intensity. It is just one border of the landscape though, an exotic melodic insanity blooming before a final fury emerges.

Through the thrillingly deranged, slightly post punk/noise rock spiced The Disco Fish, the melodically searing and perfectly crazed Inhale, and the restful and emotionally unbalanced Wish Me An Ocean Part 0, the album continues to engross and disorientate. But it is all just an appetiser for the pinnacle of the album, which is the song In Love Your Mother. With its first touch, a ridiculously addictive groove which only intensifies its lure as it is joined by rampant beats and a pleasingly varied vocal persuasion, the track is pure sonic and inventive alchemy. Demanding and infectious, imposing and wantonly accessible, it is a bargain for the soul made of the devil, a term which applies to the whole of the album.

The Hedgehog is more pure in its assault, its extreme metal rabidity direct and untethered yet still veined by a sonic enterprise to spellbind ears and thoughts. Its potent success is emulated by the inhospitable but irrepressibly catchy Ein Hase, Zwei Haese. With a swagger which only inflames its savagery and warped ingenuity equally, the track is a twisted mouth-watering blaze of unpredictability and extreme metal maliciousness to linger over.

Closed by the lo-fi folk croon of a track simply called Outro, The Great Ape Project is a sensational introduction to a band with the potential and invention to turn metal on its head at any time. The release is one of the real triumphs of the year and deserves the fullest of attention.

The Great Ape Project is available now @ http://www.cduniverse.com/productinfo.asp?pid=9357440

http://www.inloveyourmother.com

RingMaster 10/10/2014

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Viathyn – Cynosure

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With a sound which revolves within a web of progressive, folk, power, and melodic metal, drawing on varying degrees of each essence with every twist of their imagination and invention, Canadian metallers Viathyn present another contagious and gripping proposition with new album Cynosure. Nine individual musical and creative emprises thick, the album presents a fruitful and colourful journey for ears and imagination. Every track is an intriguing and at times demanding proposition with more going on than can be taken in on initial unions. It is an attention wanting enticement though which roars with a melodic tenacity and strolls with muscular flirtation to give the richest rewards.

Formed in 2006, initially as the trio of guitarist Tomislav Crnkovic, guitarist Jacob Wright, and drummer Dave Crnkovic, Viathyn released the instrumental Demagogue EP in 2008. From there the band expanded with bassist Alex Kot coming in, whilst Tomislav added vocals to his duties. Debut album The Peregrine Way was unveiled in 2010 to enthused reactions from fans and media alike. It marked the band out for their songwriting, instrumentation, and equally the storytelling which on the album told the journey of an unnamed wandering man, through the highs and lows of his life. Cynosure is bred from the same creative template, in many ways an obvious continuation of its predecessor rather than providing a startling evolution in sound and intent, but still pushing the limits and enterprise of the band to new riveting and pleasing levels.

The album starts with Ageless Stranger, a track with an epic leaning tone and resourceful melodic scenery from the off. Guitars, keys, and vocal harmonies instantly spawn a radiant yet portentous atmosphere which the jabbing beats of Dave guides with a firm hand, leading it all into a rugged terrain of rampant riffs and concussive rhythms. The song is still swarmed over by the melodic appetite of the keys and guitars though, everything coming together for a maelstrom like tempest of enticement. The strong vocals of Tomislav bring another tempting texture to the mix whilst the fluid craft of Jacob bewitches from within the aggressive stride of the song. It is a pungent and invigorating start which as its successor, as much brings thoughts of a Dommin or Volbeat as it does of bands like Wuthering Heights and KingBathmat. The song is a constantly twisting and unpredictable yet flowing proposition matched by The Coachman.

The second song takes little time to explore a richer folk enterprise to its emerging stride of rock ‘n’ roll, before weaving in just as potent essences of heavy metal and melodic rock. It is impossible not to be drawn right into its vigorous revelry, Album Cover - Viathyn  - Cynosure - 2014every turn and new idea a lure to devour with ease and greed. The brief expulsion of raw growls does not quite work but is a mere instant in a song which vocally and musically simply infects ears and imagination for a thoroughly rewarding and enjoyable encounter. There is also a theatrical mischief to the song which is given full clarity at the song’s end before Edward Mordrake thunders in on a storm of rhythmic agitation and fiery sonic temptation. Though not as immediately gripping as its predecessors, the song, with its seamless movement through varied gaits and imaginative endeavours, binds senses and thoughts in its successfully exploratory and surprising expression to keep them hungry and enthralled. The track also raises up slight comparisons to fellow Canadians New Jacobin Club at times, the drama in the skilled invention of the band’s individuals a similar and inescapable persuasion.

As mentioned there is plenty going on to reflect with mere words, this track a prime example as are both the following Shadows In Our Wake and Countess of Discordia, but that richness of depth and often tempestuously unleashed ideation ensures each partaking of a song reveals new aspects and adventures. The first of this pair of songs encloses ears with a heavy aggressive breath though it is soon aligned to an evocative wash of keys and the melodic narrative of the guitars. A thick gothic ambience also coats the song, lingering across the sinew toughened canvas and subsequent dramatic turns within the track whilst the second of the two leads by a great bass coaxing into a heavy and power metal blaze. Whether storming the senses with nostrils flared or seducing with mellower bordering on sinister melodies, the song is a glorious sonic waltz which gets better and bolder with every passing second.

Time Will Take Us All struggles to emulate the success of the previous song but still has ears and thoughts seriously engaged with its opening melancholic caress of keys and guitar, a potency matched by the emotive delivery of Tomislav. It is a song which as all on the album, builds and develops into a different proposition as it proceeds, its gentle climate discovering an imposing turbulence and emotive beauty along the way. It is not a track which lingers as others but provides another gripping tale to immerse within before the excellent folk/power metal escapade of Three Sheets To The Wind steals the passions. With a touch of Alestorm and Tyr to its Celtic folk stomp, the track swiftly recruits unbridled attention. As anthemic as all good power metal triumphs should be, the track soon has body and voice in tandem before exploring a progressive crafted landscape of mystery and invention, to keep ears and thoughts on their toes.

Completed by the dark atmospheric menace of Albedo, an outstanding track which is as predatory as it is sonically radiant and infectiously irresistible, and the closing title track, Cynosure is a peach of an encounter. The last song sums up release and band perfectly, an encounter built on a riotous elegance and creative bedlam honed into something sublime and intricately structured, not forgetting gloriously presented. The album is fun, at times unafraid to let its serious side have a rest, but most of all Cynosure is one of the most enjoyable and enterprising progressive metal releases this year.

The self-released Cynosure is available now @ http://viathyn.bandcamp.com/album/cynosure

http://www.viathyn.com

RingMaster 09/10/2014

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Verse Vica – Endeavor

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It is safe to say that progressive metal has presented some of the most imaginatively inventive bands and compellingly immersive releases over recent years and to both lists you can add Verse Vica and their debut album Endeavor. One similarly imposing and seductive flight spread over eight movements in its continuous landscape, the release is a skilled and dramatic introduction to the US band, announcing them as an exciting prospect to pay eager attention to.

Hailing from North Carolina it is maybe no surprise that their inspirations include fellow statesmen Between the Buried and Me alongside the likes of Animals as Leaders, The Faceless, Periphery, and The Contortionist. There is no denying those essences across the Asheville quartet’s first offering though it is mere flavouring to something which primarily casts its own distinctive nature and character. Unafraid to bare its rawest depths sonically and emotionally, and a flaming beauty which is as transfixing as its contrasts are rugged, the album is an intensive and at times satisfyingly demanding proposition. Though first impressions leave a hungry appetite for its presence, the album needs an attentive investigation to reveal all its striking textures and superbly crafted layers. It rewards though with not a flawless offering but definitely one which ignites a greed for more in the imagination and emotions.

Mastered by Jamie King (BTBAM, The Contortionist, Scale The Summit), Endeavor opens with the engaging Airyth. It is a gentle and melodically elegant instrumental which carries darker shadows within its smouldering and resonating presence. It is not a dramatic track, certainly in hindsight against the subsequent twists in the album’s journey, but a captivating soar across the emerging climate of piece and release. Guitarists Paul Meisner and Greg Marcon create a sonic breeze which mesmerises with its beauty and skilful designs whilst the bass of Tyler Shehan incitingly strokes the darker element of the exploration. It is a tantalising entrance though it does straight away offer up the only real flaw with the album and that is the sampled drums and rhythms. The band is yet to find a live body to swing the sticks and this makes for one aspect which is lacking across the album, being more obvious in some tracks than others, but to be fair such the quality elsewhere it is never enough to derail songs and pleasure.

The opener flows straight into the rugged terrain of Cities I: Cerulean. Riffs and grooves respectively badger and entwine ears from the first breath whilst raging gut bred growls and subsequently clean harmonies from Spencer Album CoverBrunkhorst, bring further thick colour and spice to the already colourful design of the song. The technical ability of the band is just as striking and instant, the guitars spinning a web of infectious and intimidating enterprise whilst the rhythmic side of the song, along with the harsher side of the vocals, carries as much malevolence as the melodies and sonic endeavour brings flirtatious ingenuity. Equally the songwriting shines brightly, especially in the way the band blends and twists extremes around a fluid core of intent and imagination. It is a fine incitement though soon shaded by Verdugo and even more so the outstanding Ravenholm. The first of the two stands steely eyed with hooks and riffs a savage persuasion within a caustic and radiant melodic atmosphere. Again opposites attract within the song and combine for a tantalising and intimidating excursion for ears and thoughts which the second of the pair pushes to new scenic heights. Opening with a melodic death metal ferocity and invention, the track evolves before the ears as melodies provide a catalyst taking the voracious vocal driven emprise into a seductive waltz of Latin sultriness and acoustic Spanish guitar refinement. It is an enthralling and thrilling proposition which returns to its original caustic blaze before merging it into the sonic brilliance which binds the majestic encounter.

Marumari takes senses and thoughts through an engrossing soundscape of shimmering melodies and intrigue coated bass suasion, calming ears and emotions from the previous roars before diving headlong into flaming sonic and cavernous yet intimately suggestive beauty. The instrumental is a web to spark the imagination, in a way the eye of the storm between the previous adventure and the furious tempest of Djinn. It successor is a predator yet with the antagonistic vocals and rhythmic intensity striding through a sonic tapestry of inventive and skilled ideation, the track is just as infectiously compelling as it is barbarously challenging. Sharing best track honours with Ravenholm, it is a stunning slab of creative and unpredictable bewitching hostility with the bass of Shehan stealing the biggest plaudits.

The album is brought to a tremendous close by firstly another absorbing instrumental in the mentally inflaming shape of Koholint and lastly the tempestuous might and creative storm of Cities II: Saffron. Both songs show further sides and variation to album and the band’s inventiveness, the first simply with melodic eloquence and adventure and the second through the employment of melodic and pop rock infectiousness within the technically spellbinding lure of the track.

Endeavour is a glorious debut and one which just gets better as it reveals more with every flight taken. Anticipation for a live drummer and where that takes songs and the sound of Verse Vica is a strong feeling at the end of the album but more overwhelming is the total pleasure and excitement for what Endeavour offers and where the band has the potential to go. Bottom line though is that this is a must investigation for all progressive metal fans.

The self-released Endeavor is available worldwide now on October 6th.

https://www.facebook.com/versevica

RingMaster 06/10/2014

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The Body Politic – Egressor

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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

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