Thee Exciters – Perpetual Happening

From the opening pulses of its first track, Perpetual Happening the new album from Thee Exciters grabs hold of and parties on the senses.  The experience is raucous, at times very dirty, and constantly refreshing as the UK garage punk band unleash track after track of vibrant infernal rock ‘n’ roll. The second album from the Southampton based band leaves one sweaty, energised and totally fulfilled which is all one can ask of a release though Perpetual Happening satisfies far deeper than most other releases heard in recent months if not the past year.

Formed in 2003 Thee Exciters have garnered increasing acclaim and drawn more and more to their sonic sounds via their self released debut single ‘Johnny’s Too Messed Up’ in 2004 and their releases since joining Dirty Water Records of the EP Dial ‘E’ For Excitement of 2006 and impressive debut album Spending Cash, Talking Trash two years later. Their follow up album again released on Dirty Water Records brings more gutsy fuzzed up almost primal slices of rock ‘n’ roll that sound like the bastard offspring of a beer soaked union between the likes of MC5, The Stooges with The Clash and Sham  69, with added seed from the psychotic delights of The Cramps and Reverend Horton Heat. An infectious flavouring that spurs on Thee Exciters own scuzzed up garage punk sound.

The album breaks loose with opening track ‘Dinosaur Traffic’, the track throbbing with bluesy riffs, swinging basslines and group shouts behind the brazen vocal delivery of Paul Le Brock. A delicious start toned in echo that riles up the senses for the even more impressive and excitable things to come. There is an instinctive feel towards the music that Thee Exciters make, it wakes up the raw energy within as well as in some ways give that wonderful feel of reinvented nostalgia. Though it has to be said for any bands or sounds they remind of or bring in they are mere spices within the distinct Thee Exciters feast of sound.

The fuzzy title track follows to mesmerise and pulsate within the ear, the insistent yet veiled key sound sweeping across behind the acidic guitar of Justin Cunningham a teasing element. From here the album explodes into a higher intensity and pleasure. The filth coated punk rock of ‘Flower Punk Girl’ sees the band living up to its name thrusting irresistible original UK punk intent with traces of Stiff Little Fingers and Subway Sect. Its raw, dirty, and with the drums and bass urgent and forceful totally outstanding.

The album is highly consistent but certain tracks stand out more as in the again punk fuelled garage rock gem ‘Paint Me’. As with all the tracks really it is impossible to fully tag the sound fully for in this alone there are plenty of psychedelic tones, psychobilly blooded veins and more running through the punked up rock ‘n’ roll, the diverse elements combining to make the band as exhilarating as they are. The album’s two other classic tracks are the same, varied and irrepressible. ‘Hang Loose’ may not have the most original sixties sound but it is an infectious burst through the ear to sweep one up in its distorted melodic arms, and make it impossible to resist its eager hooks and intention to ignite the senses.

The best track on Perpetual Happening is easily ‘Devils Make Up’, pure hypnotic psychobilly. The track gyrates with insistent rhythms, voodoo spawn riffs, and seedy barroom piano, and with essences of The Cramps, Meteors, and Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers oozing throughout, the album is a must listen from this track alone, though it is backed up by plenty more impressive tracks like the psychotic ‘Mirrors Never Lie’ and the uncomplicated and direct glory of the blues punk ‘Killing You’.

Perpetual Happening is masterful and a deep pleasure that whips up a storm as it winds itself into the senses to incite and ignite more pleasure than can be found in a blues and spirit fuelled whorehouse. Thee Exciters are back with a bang, rejoice and enjoy yourself with Perpetual Happening.

RingMaster 31/01/2012

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Baddies – Bronto

We all have certain bands and artists that offer that extra excitement when news of a new release from them breaks. So it is here at The RingMaster Review whenever anything escapes from the creative ingenuity that comes in the guise of Baddies. Since the release of their debut single ‘Battleships’ in 2008 there has been a lust and passion for their hi-octane, fiercely melodic, hook littered indie punk pop here that could be classed as stalkerish. So when news of a new single broke out juices dribbled and anticipation rocketed.

From Southend in the UK, Baddies made up of identical twins Michael and Jim Webster (vocals/guitar and drums/vocals respectively), Simon Bellamy (guitar/vocals), and Danny Rowton (bass/vocals), blew a musical storm with their debut album, Do The Job in 2009 and impressive performances at the likes of the Reading Festival and Glastonbury. Their infectious and energised high intensity pop taking the band to the hearts of a multitude of passionate fans who previously thought the likes of Kaisers Chiefs, The Fratellis, and Franz Ferdinand were the real deal. Tracks like ‘Colin’, ‘Open One Eye’, and ‘Beat Our Chests’  on their debut album easily set the band apart as the most essential  and outstanding pop punk band in the UK if not the world. So news of a new single, as it was when ‘Tiger Face’ was released last year, raises the temperature and pulse rate and makes time whilst waiting aggravatingly slow.

Previously single ‘Tiger Face’, impressive as it was also raised questions, for it was in many ways a more experimental track than seen before. Well crafted and as always giving an abundance of dazzling melodies it was less hook loaded than expected and was a track that demanded a more focused attention, though the reward for that was as satisfying as ever with Baddies. ‘Bronto’ finds the band fusing the same intricate craft heard in its predecessor to the incessant attention seeking glory they instinctively blaze upon, and sees Baddies back to their rip roaring insatiable best. The quartet has evolved and dare one say musically matured too but without losing or neglecting the urgent fun and irresistible lures they are loved for.

Bronto’ released via Medical Records and the first single from their forthcoming album Build out in March, announces itself upon a prying synth sound, its flow permeating the ear before exploding into incisive and exhilarating thumping basslines, sparkling melodies and expressive enthused vocals. Group chants, addictive hooks, siren spawn choruses and cascading key bursts pulsate throughout the track to mesmerise and draw one into its wonderfully consuming kaleidoscope of sound. The single also has a firmer bite to it, the band adding a punk fuelled intensity that nips at the ear as the sounds swoop and flutter their seductive melodic eyes lashes within.

The song is stunning and Baddies have shown they are still the most exciting pop band around by far. If addictive melodies and perfectly formed songs were illegal Baddies would not see blue skies again. The only problem with ‘Bronto’ is now we have to wait for a few more long painful weeks for Build, the swines.

Ringmaster 31/01/2012

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Beaten To Death – Xes And Strokes

PARAMEDICS!!!!!!!!

Can there ever be a more apt name for a band than for Norwegian grindcore abusers Beaten To Death. From the moment the first blasted note rifles up the artillery to the wasted devastation left by the end of the crushingly intense experience their name is exactly how one feels. Brutal, relentless and completely vindictive Xes And Strokes shows no mercy but and a big but, Beaten To Death offer much more beneath their avalanche of crippling intent to make a debut album that hits that deliciously tender sweet spot, well it is tender after this quintet has finished.

Beaten to Death consisting of vocalist Anders Bakke (She Said Destroy), guitarists Martin Rygge and Tommy Hjelm  (both from Insense), drummer Christian “Bartender” Svendsen (Tsjuder, The Cumshots), and bassist Mika Martinussen, is far removed from the members ‘day jobs’, replacing the mighty technical intensity of Insense and She Said Destroy with no holds grindcore punishment. As mentioned the band does not just numb the senses but they also tease and tantalise them beneath their assault with scorched melodies and distracting grooves. Xes And Strokes is a ferocious maelstrom of venomous aggression, obliterating riffs, and incapacitating intensity, it is chaotic and often seemingly undefined but scrutiny and repeat plays shows it is carefully and wonderfully structured without detriment to its instinctive raw energy. Though merely nineteen minutes long across its nine tracks the release is a stunning violation veined with irresistible hooks and warped riffs.

Pointless Testament’ throws the first kick to the guts with an arsenal of unrepentant cruel riffs, senses battering rhythms and a beckoning groove, its brief stay leading into the brilliant ‘Winston Churchill’. A toxic bassline fuels the track as scorched guitars scythe across the ear and the bile spewing vocals rupture everything in sight. Already one knows what they are going to get but at the same time are thrown plenty of unpredictable elements and surprising moves. Fusing the likes of Brutal Truth, Fuck The Facts, and Down I Go, the sound is wonderfully excruciating at times and in other moments veined with siren like distorted melodies that make the whole experience blissful.

A Rolling Stones like groove that permeates the blistering heaviness of ‘On Running’ and the rebellious spiteful melodies that spike the impressive ‘3-2-1, It´s On!’ give two more diverse and rewarding bittersweet tracks to concrete the growing knowledge of how fine an album Beaten To Death has unleashed. Often with grindcore releases tracks blend into each other, their brief and violent stays indistinguishable due to the unrelenting speed they are thrust forth. With Xes And Strokes that is never a factor, yes most of the songs barely touch two minutes and pummel to equal merciless effect but each offers something varied and clear beneath the sonic war they rage to keep the album intriguing and fresh.

Xes And Strokes is bestial and nasty, malicious in the extreme but the likes of the flesh stripping ‘Cat Olympics’, the excellent ‘Groundhog Day’ with its itchy melodies and scathing bass sound, and the irresistibly acidulous title track just destroy and feed the senses to the equal effect.  The album is painfully raw and viscerally hostile but its corrosive intensity is tempered by those mesmeric, at times mischievous grooves and melodies. This is a must have for all grindcore fans especially if you are looking for a different take on the genre.

RingMaster 30/01/2012

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Blood Ceremony – Blood Ceremony

There has been plenty of re-issues of debuts and albums from bands finding  a resurgence in popularity or simply the re-release of recordings that originally had a limited presence and were lost and out of circulation for many years. A varied collective in sound and quality they have been too but even the best of them will find it hard to match the essential quality and vibrancy of the latest from Metal Blade Records / Rise Above Records in the shape of the self titled debut from the Canadian folk/heavy rock band Blood Ceremony. The release is a gem that pulsates and bewitches with a startling array of elements that sees them as part homage to their influences and distinctly unique in the current metal/rock world.

Originally released in 2008 Blood Ceremony is a wonderfully colourful blend of psychedelic/folk/doom and stoner rock punched through with the audacity and attitude of heavy metal. There is so much going on that it is a mesmeric and beguiling release that is mischievous and also deceiving at the same time. The nine tracks within this psychedelia influenced doom rock beast offer up numerous recognisable elements and sound, riffs and melodies that you may think it is just a band wearing their influences openly on their sleeve, which in many ways they are, but without anything more. A focused listen though and you soon realise there has been and is no one fusing these things into their own unique sound like Blood Ceremony, and whether their sounds take a hold of you or not you will not have heard anyone exactly like them.

How to describe them is not a swift thing to do, imagine a bubbling cauldron of the likes of Electric Wizard, Black Widow and Pentagram spiced up with the psychedelic sounds and freedom of The Doors, the downtuned heaviness of Black Tusk, the meaty riffage of Black Sabbath, and the folk inspiration of a Jethro Tull or a Horslips without the Celtic sound, and you are in the vicinity of what Blood Ceremony weave together. With songs inspired by the heart and soul of witchcraft movies, the occult and magick, and Satanism, the quartet from Toronto conjure up fascinating and unavoidable imagery and emotions with their stirring songs and imaginative themes. As the album plays you can just see them playing to a back drop of a modern day Wicker Man ceremony or numerous covens and satanic festivals, their sounds uniting pagan and witchcraft inspired intent.

Formed in 2006 Blood Ceremony carry a heavy 60’s/70’s rock sound borne of sterner modern intensity and as their second album Living With The Ancients of 2011 confirmed it is a sound that whatever your preference in rock music one will find plenty to feast upon. From the opening concussive intro to opening track ‘Master Of Confusion’ on the debut, the band swoop upon and gather up the senses taking them on a part theatrical and wholly absorbent experience. That is one thing about the album, it has a showman feel in a way, the dark themes and sinister tales lacking venom and fear, but offer up glorious fun. The track provokes the ear with belligerent riffs and attitude as it winds its way through the ear to menace and tease the senses, especially from the lovely grumpy bass and expressive keys.

The album is perfectly varied, from the heavy opener ‘I’m Coming with You’ muscles in with a well crafted blend of militant riffs, throbbing energy, and Lucifer spawned pan pipe like flute from vocalist Alia O’Brien. This is the harshest of the tracks keeping a deliberate muscle throughout despite the wicked ‘pipes’ that whip around the bulky energy. Guitarist Sean Kennedy and bassist Lucas Gadke give real heavy fibrous intent to the sound on the album perfectly supported by drummer Andrew Haust, all allowing O’Brien to light up torches of exquisite melodies and add incisive breaks to the weighty atmospheres.

The album is impressive from start to the last devilish wink of its closing note, with tracks like the shadowed ‘Into The Coven’ , the spirit raising necromantic celebration of ‘The Rare Lord’, and ‘Hop Toad’ with its insatiable preying riff and siren like melodic beckoning, rifling through and engaging the senses completely. If you have not found Blood Ceremony yet then here is your chance to jump in at the beginning, time to immerse into their earthy dark world with more burning flames than you could wish for.

RingMaster 30/01/2012

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Chimp Spanner – All Roads Lead Here

From the first brewing sound on All Roads Lead Here, the new EP from Chimp Spanner completely takes over and enthrals the senses, permeating deeply to inspire and instigate thoughts, imagery and most of all emotions. The release is striking and an eager imaginative collection of compositions that continue the band’s accomplished and irresistible diversity of sounds and ideas to combine in a haven for melodic ingenuity and technical expertise and inventiveness.

Chimp Spanner is the instrumental progressive metal project of multi-instrumentalist Paul Antonio Ortiz, a man who has impressed and left more and more awestruck with his stunning sounds and musical imagination. Also known for his work with Blessed Inertia and Monuments, Ortiz first released Imperium Vorago in 2004 as Chimp Spanner to be followed by At the Dream’s Edge in 2009, both self released. The latter drew great attention its way and the following year saw the second album find a wider release from a deal signed between Chimp Spanner with Basick Records.

All Roads Lead Here, again released in conjunction with Basick, was recorded, mixed and self produced in Ortiz’s home studio as with his previous releases. The EP continues where At the Dream’s Edge left us in bringing a staggering blend of evocative and emotive ambience with polyrhythmic insurgent rhythms and provocative progressive melodic creativity. The release penetrates far and wide with its dual djent inspired riffage and emotion spilling harmonics alongside warm excitable melodies. Simply it is irrepressibly inventive and enjoyable, a feast and formidable delight of strong and inventive imagination and sound.

The pulsating and muscular ‘Dark Age Of Technology ‘ opens up the EP fusing crystalline melodies and sweltering atmospherics to a metallic djent like spine. The track’s progressive flow and vibrant expanse is a spiralling fallout from the initial explosion in the ear the track gives, radiating warmth and stirring up emotions. The heavy and soaring elements of the song come together in a inspirational union and it is impossible not to be swept up in the track’s graceful intent.

The whole release really plays as one movement but can be broken down into different and distinct pieces as well, though the release’s three part glory of ‘Moebius’ is a defined piece that has to come as a whole to fully experience and enjoy its journey. Between the e opening track and the first part of ‘Moebius’ the brief and haunting ‘Engrams’ forms a slightly spaced out link. The guitars are like magical caresses but beneath them there is a subdued but distressed sound bringing an ominous feel alongside the beauty.

Moebius Pt I’ from an initial mystical flow erupts into pulse racing insurgency before intermittently switching seamlessly between the two, bringing them together fully as the track evolves. The track explores the senses absorbing them into its vast expanse of infectious melodies and welcoming rhythms. At times the guitars are verging on caustic but completely mesmeric however they venture through the ear. There is so much going on that every visit comes with new adventure and though it is an mass of creativity it never becomes messy or confused something that applies to the whole release.

Moebius Pt II’ is a more angular and intense piece without neglecting further flowing sounds from the keys and touches of distorted harmonised guitar. It exudes a wonderful mellower tone as it progresses with still the metallic spikiness of rhythms and guitar strong as it flows right into ‘Moebius Pt III’. This piece in some ways feels like a summing up paragraph to the previous duo of parts though the intrusive scathing riffs later breaking out open up more stunning avenues. Its progressive ventures are as riveting as they are consuming, inspiring the most focused fascination possible and confirming the impressive originality of the release.

Ending on the expressive sonic skies of ‘Cloud City’, the sublime All Roads Lead Here EP is nothing short of a triumph and places Chimp Spanner to the fore of progressive metal music. You all really do need to hear this. Oh and for additional information there will be a strictly limited edition clear transparent vinyl version available with the exclusive addition of the Supereroremix EP which is equally impressive.

www.chimpspanner.com

Pete RingMaster 29/01/2012

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The Pulsebeats – The Pulsebeats

The self titled debut album from Spanish based power pop combo The Pulsebeats only has one intention, to rattles cages and tease ears with enthused and excitable bursts of pulse racing raw energy. To the term power pop, which the band use on their bio, is slightly misleading as their eager sound is more a clash of garage rock and punk with healthy veins of pop and rock. The album is unpredictable and a release with definite peaks though the consistency across its length is strong.

From Santander, The Pulsebeats began at the beginning of 2010 with the quartet of Nathan (ex- The Vipers – UK), Alex (currently in Zientotreintayuno and Riff Cadaver), Ral (ex- White Radars, The Vipers, Mairollosnauta, Corte de los Milagros…) and Luis coming together to in their own words “…write great pop tunes that you can dance and sing along to.” The album proves they succeeded though with a great rough edge to their music to be more than just pop.

The Heart Of The Rhinestone Cowboy’ opens up proceedings, jangly guitars with a southern lilt playing on the ear. The song is a stirring mix of punk and country rock giving a mix of The Pogues, Reverend Horton Heat and Dropkick Murphys. Blistered melodies and harmonies flow alongside the choppy guitars and coarse vocals to make a strong start to the release. The pop punk of ‘Song For Celia’ plays easily upon the ear next but it is with ‘Cynical Ride’ that things accelerate. From the first thirsty riff the song grabs firm attention, with a dirty insatiable sound, teasing keys and a thumping rhythm it hits the spot perfectly. The track also confirms what previous tracks suggested, there are some mean basslines at play even if production veils them beneath the guitar at times.

The dual male and female vocal led ‘Midnight Drive’, the energetic ‘You Powerpop Boys’ with boisterous guitars and mischievous bass, plus another southern twang lined track in ‘1,000 Stars’ keep the album flowing with agreeable and pleasing sounds, the last of the three bringing urges to strap on the stirrups and go ride something. Though the tracks do not leap out as others they all bring a sing-a-long attitude, fun, and memorable moments to get feet tapping and interest deep.

The Pulsebeat keeps the best until last though, the album closing with three thrilling and impressive tracks. Firstly ‘Shallow Call’ swaggers in with shouts, a grumbling bassline and stirring punk guitars chopping across the senses. Sounding Rocket from the Crypt like, the track turns up the intensity and energy. It never gets out of control or goes full pelt but has all the elements and intentions good punk music should. ‘Wanna Make U Mine’ leaps right in next, giving a senses energising cacophony of sound from an inbred union between The Briefs and The Strokes with Living End, this is punkabilly at its best.

Killed By Sinatra’ closes out the release with equal quality and pleasure. Fuelled by rampaging pop punk focusing on direct ear blistering fun the song is again RFTC like with splatters of The Stooges and Foxboro Hot Tubs. It throbs and jumps with playfulness, and as always jangly guitars and irresistible hooks run wild. Placing strong tracks at the end of an album always seems an obvious idea though many bands do not. To leave on a track that rings and lingers around the head and thoughts has to be the best way to induce people back soon, apart from making a great album of course.  The Pulsebeats do it in triplicate, leaving the listeners with a trio of thumping hyperactive irresistible tunes. With the rest of the album being pretty darn good too they have come up with an impressive album.

The Pulsebeats is not without flaws especially in the bass and keys which when heard are excellent but too often they are blanketed by the crashing guitars and eager vocals. The album is a treat to delve into again and again with ease so go treat yourself by checking it out, a fun time is guaranteed and it just might become a regular on your personal playlist.

RingMaster 27/01/2012

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This Vicious Cabaret – City Of Ghosts

City Of Ghosts the debut EP from UK post-hardcore band This Vicious Cabaret is a fresh and exuberant burst of rock that pounces upon and feeds the ear with accomplished ease and lingering satisfaction. The four track release is a rewarding energetic introduction to a band that one feels has even more promise and quality within them than shown on what is a thoroughly pleasing first release.

From Watford This Vicious Cabaret has  built up a fine reputation for their highly charged live shows since forming in 2009, their creative blend of aggressive hardcore and catchy melodic rock sounds drawing in an ever increasing following and support from media, radio and fans alike. From the evidence on City Of Ghosts it is no surprise how they are growing in stature and one assumes rapidly as the songs here have no intentions other than to please, thrill and entertain their audience, simply put to give all a good time.

The opening title track tells you all you need to know about the band, energetic with thumping rhythms, stirring riffs and a bassist in Lex Mead to mesmerise with ear grabbing basslines it is instantly enjoyable. Vocalist Jason Thorn’s emotive delivery is impressive giving the song a different vein of strength to power it easily through the ear. Alongside fellow guitarist Joe Davis, the duo spread the song to its limits with crashing punk energy and thoughtful engaging progressive play framed by formidable drums and direction from Radman. An impressive start continued by ‘New Disease’.

Toying with the senses the track is an intense yet playful beast that scoops one up in its forceful grasp to explode in the ear.  The mix of power and carefully crafted impassioned melodies is impressive and inspiring. Many try and leave one thinking it would be better if they had gone one way or the other but This Vicious Cabaret have melded a perfect fluidity that keeps the tracks in full rampant mode whilst exploring their obvious creativity of sound and melodies.

As the EP plays it gets better and better with ‘Entry Points And Exit Wounds’ lifting things even higher. Punk infused the song is immense and the more one listens the better it gets. Another insatiable grumbling bass attack from Mead ensures full attention whilst the blistering guitars eagerly dance all over the ear. As the track progresses it feels as if the pace  is going to veer out of control, the song teasing with suggestions of chaos but the band’s firm hand and skill keeps it perfectly reigned in.

Not to let the sequence go in decline final track ‘The Fall Of Icarus’ finishes things off by unleashing more red-blooded riffs and vigorous rhythms.  The sudden slow down and emotive climax to the song is the only time the EP did not quite work but that is more a personal thing as there is nothing particularly wrong with it, Thorn as throughout delivering great vocals and passion with the lyrics, but it just felt out of kilter with the robust song and usual seamless switches elsewhere in tone and pace.

The band openly list influences as the likes of Funeral for a Friend, Alexisonfire, Finch, and Coheed & Cambria and if you have a liking of those This Vicious Cabaret is definitely a must hear for you. As the final track played it dawned as to another they have a similar flavouring to, Rocket From The Crypt certainly in the energy they produce and the vocal department.

City Of Ghosts to be honest may not be the most ground breaking release but for a debut it is deeply impressive and the more you listen the more it connects. It is a must check out and as the band have it as a free download on their Bandcamp profile there really is no excuse not to, besides any band that lists Reuben under influences has to be special right?

Get ‘City Of Ghosts’ @ http://thisviciouscabaret.bandcamp.com/

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RingMaster 26/01/2012

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Dick Venom & The Terrortones – Rockin Rollin Vampire Man

With a warm smouldering glow deep inside the new EP from Dick Venom & The Terrortones is placed in the slot and the play button pushed by an eager excited finger. It has been a long long time since a psychobilly release has passed this way, a form of music that brings tingles that most genres can only aspire to at The Ringmaster Review. But can this UK quartet fulfil this anticipation or disappoint to bring an anti-climax?

The Rockin Rollin Vampire Man EP is a gem, from the moment the first track flexes its sweat soaked mischievous pecs the release courts and seduces the senses with honest graveyard rock ‘n’ roll.  Actually the press release calls this a double A-side single of ‘Rockin Rollin Vampire Man’/ ‘Sticky Pants Trance’ but with a third track included too I am sure they will excuse us calling it an EP.

Consisting of Dick Venom, Vicky Twist, Sugar Beats, and Wrex St Clair the band have a insatiable garage/rockabilly/psychobilly sound evolved through a nasty flesh violated union between the likes of The Cramps, Heartbreakers, Reverend Horton Heat and Demented Are Go. It is a glorious tease upon the senses and an instinctive instigator of the body’s rhythms, essential rock ‘n’ roll. The quartet has sucked energy and blood from audiences all over the UK sharing stages with the likes of The Meteors, The Radiacs, and Vince Ray & The Boneshakers and this EP instantly nurtures the need and want to catch the band live as for all the excitement generated on the release you just know they on stage is a totally different experience.

Sticky Pants Trance’ ~(we’ve all been there right?) opens up proceedings with a Cramps spawned garage punk energised sound and pulse racing rockabilly urgency. You can add a touch of early Birthday Party and Meteors to this but for all the comparisons and references that openly ooze the finished sound s are all Dick Venom & The Terrortones. The guitars chop greedily across the senses as the bass throbs like a wanton beast on heat whilst Venom spits and writhes with words as he thrusts the messy fun filled lyrics forth.  The rest of the release could be crap and it would not matter thanks to this excellent opener.

Of course the remaining tracks only get better. ‘Rockin Rollin Vampire Man’ is the best track on the EP, irresistible and hypnotic. With a wonderful lustful and inviting drum beat alongside a grumbling bass the song  hooks its seductive nails in firmly. This opening reminds one remarkably closely of a Zanti Misfits song ‘Kidz Songs’ (look it up) from the 80’s and it is hard to think of a better beginning to a song.  The track also carries the dark energy of 80’s band Bone Orchard and sweeps one up in its pulsating scrawny arms in a blood fuelled dance.  The track is psychobilly majesty that will bring deep smiles and longing desire from all fans of the genre.

Dirty Heartbreakers flavoured rock’ n’ roll lines the final track ‘Lilly & The Killers’, its beginning coming with a spice reminding of ‘Chinese Rocks’. As always Venom conjures a tale with his words inspiring crypt borne imagery and dangerous romance. Brief, straightforward, and direct the song is the perfect closure for a stunning release. I tried to find fault somewhere but it is impossible. Yes music like this finds a relatively narrow market, its delights and death drawn mischief a mystery and confusion for many but if you have tasted the wells of rockabilly and psychobilly and grown appreciative fangs then Dick Venom & The Terrortones will soon be an addition to your favourites folder.

Rockin Rollin Vampire Man and the decayed treasures within are simply manna from the cemetery and the cause of impatient anticipation for much more from the band. UK psychobilly is in safe hands, we can all rest in peace for that.
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RingMaster 26/01/2012

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Dick Venom & The Terrortones – Sticky Pants Trance

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Burn The Sunset – Home

With the force of a wind tunnel cranked up to the top, Home from Scottish metalcore band Burn The Sunset is a punishing assault on ear, senses and self security. The debut album from the Stirling based metalers saps the energy and breath from its listener whilst leaving the shattered shell a smiling wreck from its infernal intensity. It is not an easy listen and many will run for cover the instant it places its sonic claws into their psyche but stand tall in the face of its tumultuous aggressive sounds and the reward is deep and satisfying.

Formed in 2008, Burn The Sunset has steadily and effectively worked towards its brutal sound and this debut release. The years leading up to Home has seen the quintet crafting their musical thoughts and sound through countless impressive live shows including shared stages with and tours alongside the likes of Never Cry Wolf, Your Demise, While She Sleeps, Bleed From Within, and It Prevails, and concentrated songwriting, the band garnering strong respect and acclaim along the way. The album is proof that the time taken honing and finding their sound has been well worth the wait. To be honest Home suggests there is still much more to come from the band and that they still have not found that really defining element that will make them stand heads above the rest but they are well on the way and the promise this release offers is frightening and very exciting for future releases and years.

Opening pulsating instrumental ‘Home Pt 1’ proves to be reasonably subdued against the rest of the release, its striking and intrusive riffs a mere hint to the devastation to be unleashed upon the ear. The track leads straight into the excellent ‘Moving On’ and the awakening of the beast that is Home. The track rifles the listener with treacherous riffs and incisive melodic guitars from  Jonathon Almond and Duncan Fyfe that sear rather than groom the ear. It hits hard but still the band is not at full intense capacity, the song bullying rather than crushing its victim. The vocals of Andy Bruce are caustic, his venomous growls dragged from a swamp of bile, and a perfect fit to the blistering sound.

Lonely and Defeated’ throws full force upon the listener, obliterating with destructive riffs, rhythms that numb, and pissy basslines from Jack Sullivan. From here on in the intensity is all consuming and impervious to resistance. ‘The Changing Times’ pummels the senses with towering riffs and power which never diminishes even through the smooth and distinct pace changes. From a rampant animal to a lumbering brute and back the track is relentless and demanding. As throughout the release Home gives no time for a gulp of air between tracks as ‘Insincere’ slams into view belligerent and full of animosity. Its winding groove twists and teases the senses until they are ready to snap whilst scorched guitar play taunts behind. The gang shouts are a good contrast to the harsh delivery of Bruce and maybe if a criticism there were not enough.

The album’s best track is ‘Memories’ and by a long way, it is a classic. It is hard to define what it has different or what sets it apart from the other fine songs but it simply ripples with extra exited energy and enterprising creativity. Without losing any of the urgency and intensity found elsewhere the song ignites and pleases the ear and beyond with a tremendous rhythm attack from Callum Bain, who it has to be said is outstanding throughout Home, essential riffs that trigger the primal inside, and a siren mesmeric groove that attaches itself like a leech giving rather than drawing pleasure.

Home is not without minor faults, mainly in the fact that despite his fine display and aggressive delivery Bruce’s vocals are a touch one dimensional and often veils the variation going on musically. Not a major criticism but a slight diversity would make on feels great songs even better and it is no coincidence that when the collective shouts and chants come in the songs find another dimension.  Despite that Burn The Sunset has announce their arrival with a ferocious and blistering release that will give deep satisfaction for those with an extreme metal/metal core bent.

RingMaster 26/01/2012

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My Tiny Robots – Zut Alor

With each release Edinburgh’s My Tiny Robots has shone brighter and engaged deeper with their eclectic melodic discordant sounds. From their debut release the Some Of My Best Ideas EP of 2007 through to the free to download single ‘Rock Bossa Nova Four Beat Black’ via the Rock Bossa Nova EP the quartet has intrigued and thrilled with their imaginative well crafted songs.

November of last year saw the release of the first of three singles from the band in the shape of the captivating ‘Guild Of Defiants’. This past week saw the release of single two ‘Zut Alor’ and yet another mesmeric and sparkling release from the quirk pop band. Once more the distinct melodic yet discord spiced vocal combination of Dylan Childs and Ryan Marinello swarm all over their own jangly hypnotic guitars. Backed by the thoughtful rhythms of drummer Gareth Anderson and the moody bass of Russell Williams the foursome create their own unique sound. In a previous review of ‘Guild Of Defiants’ which we loved we ended by saying “the song is not ground breaking as such and does not deliver any striking surprises…” To clarify that and to put it into context with regard to the band’s music, against all other current contemporaries My Tiny Robot offer fully original and inspired songs that few if any match in sound. What the band does do though is bring forth the intelligent and musical quiddities of very early Orange Juice and definitely the brilliant Josef K. Whether intentional or by chance there is a certain defined similarity and evolution from the 80’s band’s sound, reinterpreted into their own striking creations which is the reason for the original comment.

Zut Alor’ starts on an emotively touching subdued feel, caressing the ear for a soothing minute before unfurling tantalising guitars and firm rhythms. The single has a more chaotic feel once it swells into its full texture making it less instant then the previous single but more adventurous and eventful. As with most of their songs ‘Zut Alor’ is instinctively anthemic, it invites and encourages spirit and voice to join its call without trying.

Released with Wood Thief Recordings, ‘Zut Alor’ is another dazzling track from My Tiny Robots and leads to the eagerest anticipation and impatience for third single ‘My Tiny Robots’ later in the year.

http://www.mytinyrobots.com/

RingMaster 25/01/2012

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My Tiny Robots – Zut Alor

 

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