Creepy Band: The Curse Of The Cloak

Creepy Band

    Uncanny in name and sound, Creepy Band is one of those encounters you never forget or drive out of your mind no matter your reaction to their unique and evocative sounds, though it is hard to imagine anyone not being enthralled and wrapped up in the sinister creativity going on especially within their debut album. The Curse Of The Cloak is a delicious eerie encounter which paints and evokes colourful haunting emotions and imagery through its collection of aural ‘horror movies’ and makes for the most compelling playmate each and every time its long spooky fingers are allowed to tease the senses.

The Chicago quintet of Dave Henderson (vocals), Sam Huff (keys/organ), Jake Gold (guitar), Ray Knipe (drums), and Benji Jacobs (bass), came together to play one show on All Hallow’s Eve 2010, but they and the devils raised had such fun that the Creepy Band emerged from the carnage to go forth and overrun the souls of their home city ever since. Influences for the musicians and thus the band come from the likes of Black Sabbath and The Doors, the latter an open rich and mesmeric flavour with their first album. To the influences which seemingly spice what is a truly distinct sound on The Curse Of The Cloak, you can also add potent flavours of bands such as Th’ Legendary Shack Shackers, Danzig, and with the dark vaudeville tones which wash over the ear throughout the release, The Shanklin Freak Show. Their sound is a masterful conjuration of delicious discord, slashing guitars, predatory rhythms, and enveloping church organ, a combination that leaves its mysterious prints on every thought, emotion, and atom.

As the opening caress of church organ within the opening Intro wraps the ear with blistered prayer inside its touch, the album 3631042872-1immediately is one of intrigue further enforced by the emergence of Doomsday Device, a song with heavy resonance, snapping rhythms, and pagan like psychedelic breath. The song is a weave of lush melodic strokes within the continuing to re-sound presence and heart of the song created by the deep dwelling bass stalking and punchy drums. The vocals of Henderson sway over the emerging tale coating the musical canvas with an expressive story telling as compelling as the sounds coaxing them forth. It is a hypnotic start carried right through the album starting with the following Ray’s Riff, another song like all which offers a fascination impossible to pull away from. Dark and shadowed the track entwines vocal and energy squalls with questioning melodic intrusions and sultry enticement for a wholly engaging evocation of the passions.

As Shipsong floats upon the shores of the senses with its bewitching xylophone spawn probing and stomping beats, the album takes a riveting detour into different but equally compulsive waters, the track with vocals from Huff leading the romp aural addiction. The song has received strong airplay with The Bone Orchard radio show, the lush soak of delta blues and psychobilly with a polka to its stance adding its own distinct character to the fiery touch of the song one of the most potent invitations into the album. The breeze of steam punk also within its passage is another thrilling kiss upon the heart and helps breed a full and overwhelming persuasion for the passions, not that it or the album finds any resistance.

The garage rock gnarl of Live Amongst Horror takes the listener to another portentous port of call, its occasional teasing and pick-pocketing of the senses adding extra mischief to the overall unrestrained eagerness whilst songs like the dramatic, emotive Ballad and Damn The Old Man with its theatrical gait unveil further evocative aural paintings for thoughts and emotions to immerse within.

The contagious swagger and beckoning of Shipsong pt. II incites full rapture and anthemic indulgence from the listener before the addictive sonic drizzling of Red Fish, Dead Fish frees its own irresistible wanton temptation from which there is no escape. The unrelenting insistence of the latter is insatiable and once winning its cause leads one into the conflagrant depths of the magnificent Chromatic Descent; a seventies psychedelic sonic blaze from which there is no escaping the Doors comparison. It is a sensational track which in turn passes its triumph to the similarly layered closer Let There Be Light with its more caustic and rasping voice.

It is a final fanfare of excellence from The Curse Of The Cloak, an album which deserves every ounce of acclaim it receives and more. Need an engrossing companion for the beckoning shadows or a bedtime chill for those dark nights than Creepy Band is the perfect instigator to those welcoming nightmares.


RingMaster 08/02/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Cancrena: Hidden Depravity


    Recent months have seen numerous impressive thrash metal assaults unleashed to which Italian metallers Cancrena have added another formidable release with their thunderous predator Hidden Depravity. Whilst the album uses well mined sounds and ventures it turns them into one of the most powerful, destructive, and downright thrilling records to ravage the passions. The album is a brute of an encounter and thoroughly irresistible.

From Bari, Cancrena formed in 2000 reaping essences from influences such as Pantera, Testament, and Sepultura. Loaded with heavy merciless riffs and an even hungrier energy the band became a recognised force on the local live scene spreading outwards across southern Italy through further gigs and festivals. From a two track self-titled demo in 2003 and the self-produced seven track Fears demo of 2005, which included that first duo of songs, Cancrena grew their reputation further to inspire mounting acclaim through their shows and the new EP. Another demo Underneath emerged the following year leading to a signing with Vision Metal Records in 2008 who gave the demo distribution in the US and UK. Shows with the likes of Obituary, Extrema, Pino Scotto (ex-Vanadium), Finntroll, Vomitory, Malevolent Creations, Paw Power and many more followed over the next three years before the band ventured in the studio last year to record Hidden Depravity, a powerhouse of southern thrash metal.

Released through Logic(il)Logic Records, Hidden Depravity takes no prisoners as immediately evident by the beginning of Cover Hidden Depravity - lightopener Serpent Skin. Emerging from within senses gnawing carnal mists, the song steps forward through a bassline with the most compelling snarl and a torrent of tight destructive rhythms and ravenous riffs linked by a groove which scythes through the ear like a sonic sabre.  Soon the vocals of Francesco Morgese unleash passionate scowls with skill and enterprise to match the already riveting guitar play of Francis Farinola. Well into its stride the song is openly soaked in the aggressive malice of Pantera and driven by an insatiable rich creative craft comparable to a Sepultura or Metallica. It is an explosive start to the album which never lets up through to the end.

The following tempest of hungry energy and senses corroding intensity brought by The Pessimist is equally contagious and demanding. At times there is a Dez Fafara venom and growl to the vocals which lay a deeper abrasion upon the listener whilst musically the track fuses annihilatory intent and smouldering melodic flames together for a full on torrent of voracious invention. Nearing its end the song stops as if over then returns with a furnace of a climax which leaves one breathless and delirious.

The bass of Fab Chiarazzo is a perpetual hypnotic joy across the whole album, his deeply rapacious lines as devastating as they are dangerously seductive whilst the rhythms of drummer Ruggiero Ricco feel like a torrent of unpredictable donkey punches upon the senses. Through the tremendous assaults of songs like Pervert Priest, Dark Torment, and Backdraft, the pair unleash a heavy persuasion and brutality which alone leaves the passions aflame but once lock ‘n’ loaded into primal shotguns of songs alongside the burning craft and rich potency of the guitars and vocals, a willing submission is only a matter of crossing the ’i’s and dotting the ‘t’s.

The further in the release one is thrust the more the intensity and pleasure escalates, tracks such as Black Underground with its twisting vehement structure and crushing union of rhythmic ruination and rabidly greedy riffs, the Bloodsimple toned ravaging Ancient Strength, and the staggering title track, all finely honed storms of savagery and sonic mastery. The last of these three is a mighty metallic wrath which consumes and devours the senses with rich rage and violent authority but as across the album, the band tempering it slightly with a wonderful skilful and imaginative melodic warm.

From first note to last the release is a snarling ravager though it unexpectedly and beautifully gives respite nearing its end through the magnetic instrumental To Nerve Oneself, the piece showing the band as able to create colourful melodic pictures as skilfully and easily as they can grievously decimate. Of course it is only a moment of relief as the band end the album with another staggering riot of murderous rampage in the intensive Under The Law. With sonic fires flaming with melodic brilliance within the ferocity it is a mighty end to an outstanding album. Many will suggest there is nothing new going on upon Hidden Depravity and arguably they are right but when it sounds this sensational who cares. Cancrena makes thrash metal which matters and far better than most.



RingMaster 08/02/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Šut / Big Charmin’ Men: Hladna Soba / Birthday 31 split cd

33. ŠUT - BIG CHARMIN_ MEN split cd ( Hladna Soba - Birthday 31 )  T2, 2012, front

    A release all fans of garage punk/ punk will find more than a fleeting interest in is the split album from two raw and intriguing Serbian bands, Šut and Big Charmin’ Men. The album is a retrospective release from the pair of Svilajnac bands in that it brings together potent moments from their undiscovered careers, beyond their borders anyway. 2000 album Hladna Soba (Cold Room) from Šut (an album from what we can tell was unreleased), consisting of 13 tracks makes up half the release along with an additional three songs from 1998 and is matched in the number of tracks by the 2006 mini album Birthday 31 and an additional eight songs which include covers of tracks from legendary bands from the former Yugoslavia by their compatriots. Released on underground label  T2 (Torpedo Boom), it is a raw and honest collection of sounds and tracks which from start to finish are compelling and enlightening.

Šut was formed in 1993 by Mouse and Pop alongside Voja (bass). Their sound from accounts evolved over the years until 2002 with the band building a strong reputation and fan base for their fiery sounds. A demo was released in 1997 to be followed by the recording of Vetar (The Wind), an also unpublished album from which the three additional songs on this album come from. With a line-up of Mouse (guitar/lead vocals), Voja (guitar/vocals), Darius (bass/vocals), and Dreja (drums/backing vocals) for Hladna Soba, the band has brewed up a tasty mix of garage and post punk for songs which capture the imagination constantly.

The quartet open up the album with an excellent instrumental simply called Intro, a piece of rock n roll fused from punk, garage rock, and a loud whisper of rockabilly neatly moulded into a brief and infectious invitation.  The following Ovih Dana is a boisterous fusion of old school punk and garage punk abrasion which hits the spot with its heavy bass breath and riotous energy and attitude and as with the majority of the songs on the album and all from Šut the lyrics are sung in Serbian but ensure it is not an issue by raising a passion and energy which triggers the primal instincts only punk of any form can touch. The first full song is seeded in punk but from the following Pesak U Satua a post punk vein begins to make its voice heard especially within the best tracks from the band in the magnetic form of Pad, Pucaj, and Predsoblje. The first is a mesh of blustery sonics, harsh snapping drums, and a cold yet incendiary groove. There is an underlying drone to it which is irresistible and within the melodic sonic flames it tempers and compliments the heat of the instrumental elsewhere. Pucaj immediately from its discord dripping groove and scathing riffs reminds of bands like Artery and Crispy Ambulance and offers a cold contagion impossible not to devour eagerly. It is the best track on the whole release though easily equalled by Predsoblje, the song a Joy Division meets Thee Headcoats which again just enthrals and leads limbs in to a chaotic response as does the band for most of their presence on the album.

Big Charmin’ Men sound like their influences are similar to their conspirators but offer a more blues and sixties punk breath to their garage furnace of noise. Consisting of Mihajlo Belolule, and Andreja Vlajic the band began in 2005, recording the eight track mini album which makes up half their contribution here the following year. Their first CD New Life appeared in 2010 to good responses to be followed by Born (Down Somewhere) a year later with the band apparently calling it a day the same year.

The duo start off their part of the release with the challenging attitude of Iskovan Od Bola, a slab of provocative rock n roll which stamps and stomps like a belligerent teenager. Next up the Ramones veined I Dalje Tu is an excellent piece of punk rock whilst the blues fire raging within Ja Sanjam shows the diversity of the band and their open sound. Elevated highlights from the band come through the punk grazing of Jedva Čekas Da Odeš with a great guitar blaze for is climax and the muscular intimidating Dobro Sam, again the songs bringing an accomplished variety from the band. The band take influences from the likes of Majke, Pokvarena Masta, Machine Gun, and Kaoticne Duse, and contribute a few very decent covers including one of the Pokvarena Mašta song Ne Budi Divlja and the Majke track Loš Život featuring the harmonica skills of Sarma. They end their participation on the record with the wonderful Rođen Negde Dole, a blues driven romp of total pleasure with more mesmeric harmonica craft this time from the soulful skills of Knucklehead. It is a delicious brawl of rock n roll and the perfect way to end a fine release.

If punk, garage, and to some extent blues raises strong flickers of passion within than checking out this thoroughly enjoyable release could just make your day.

To find out more about the album and how to get it


RingMaster 08/02/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright