The Last Legion: Conspire EP

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Though you cannot say the debut EP from UK metallers The Last Legion is a release which has a distinct voice and presence amongst the numerous metalcore/melodic hardcore bands which have emerged over the past couple of years or so, it certainly offers the promise and evidence within its quartet of impressive tracks that the band is on the right course to find that uniqueness. The Conspire EP is an accomplished and satisfying release from a band that employ existing sounds and ideas in their own inventive way and though the release maybe does not ignite raging fires within for its enterprise and offerings it certainly intrigues and marks the band as one to keep a steady eye and ear upon.

From South London the quintet blend strong technical metal intent with an aggressive metalcore passion whilst inventive progressive and melodic flames add extra heat to the powerful union. Since forming in2010 the band has made steady and potent strides forward with last year their most intensive to date and seeing the band sharing stages alongside the likes of Silent Screams, Against The Flood, Carcer City, The Charm The Fury, Demoraliser and Liferuiner, whilst this year already looks just as active and potent live but with their first release to ignite things further. The Adam Getgood (Periphery) released EP is a vigorous first step to a wider awareness and the initial move towards what it suggests will be a successful future.

First track Guardian emerges from a sonic bristling of guitar and atmosphere to entwine the ear in intimidating rhythm, with the bass of Alex Bramwell immediately grabbing its own corner of focus through a controlled but openly hungry presence, and skilled inventive guitar lures from Ali Marshall and Chris Tierney. The song takes no time in stealing the march on the senses accosting them with melodic and intense energy before they can breathe whilst the diversity of the vocals is a pleasing adventure to come to terms with. Lead vocalist on the EP is Steve Kerr ably supported by Marshall and Bramwell, and between them from impressive clean coaxing of the ear to the squeezing squalls and ravenous belligerent growls the united effect works a treat. Admittedly the clean vocals excel over the other approaches with ease but each attack finds its place in the song and scheme of things given time.

The following BeakBreakers teases and punishes the senses straight from its first gulp of energy, the guitars coaxing with sonic elegance and simultaneously splintering bone with djent malevolence and the thumping impressive drums of Jake Ardley. The musicianship within the band is skilled and keenly sculpted for the strongest effect, this song arguably the band at its strongest and most creative. Mid-way in to the track the progressive heart of the band has its moment to escape the destructive malice and mesmerises the listener with delicious melodies and again superior clean vocals. The track soon reverts to its inciting poison and climaxes with aural spite and thrilling violence with the only niggle coming from the song fading out, just a personal bug-bear though.

Both Standing Like Steel and Angels And Demands continue the great sounds and songwriting, the first wrenching on thoughts and emotions with provocative anger and seducing melodic beckoning whilst the final song on the release chews and gnaws on the ear with enterprise though it is the least successful song on the EP.

As mentioned The Last Legion does not stand apart from the rest quite yet but the Conspire EP is full of an invention and craft which will surely evolve and brew that individual stance within the genre in the future. The release is more than worthy of taking up your time and offers up a rich satisfaction and occasionally an incendiary passion to feast upon.

A name your own price release join the first steps of one very promising emerging band @ http://thelastlegion.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TheLastLegion

7/10

RingMaster 19/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Inter Arma: Sky Burial

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    Sky Burial is an album which already people are shouting from the rooftops about and once consumed by its impacting perfect storm of creativity and exhausting mass it is hard to resist joining them in a fire of ardour. The album is immense, a genre stirring offering from a band in Inter Arma who will define and engineer new inspiring avenues ahead just as they have with this sensational release.

Formed in 2006, the quintet from Richmond, VA merges the thickest richest essence of doom, sludge, psychedelia and grind as well as inciting black metal and progressive flames to create their own unique and formidable sound and place in metal. Their debut album Sundown in 2010 rightly put the metal and critics on eager alert but with Sky Burial, which follows their acclaimed Destroyer EP of last year, Inter Arma has ingrained an indelible mark upon metal and set new plateaus and bench marks for others to aspire to. The album is like a tsunami, hurricane, and tornado of aggression and invention rolled in to one infernal and riveting tempest, and the fact that despite its staggering presence it still has moments which do not quite light internal fires so you feel and know there is still so much more to come from the band. This realisation is frightening and deeply exciting when immersed within the massive triumph that is Sky Burial.

Released on Relapse Records, the album immediately lays a sonic scourge upon the senses with The Survival Fires, the guitar riffsskyburial_900 thick, musky, and striking against the insatiable drum rolls of T.J. Childers. The track envelops and rolls around the ear with acidic venom and a pervading malevolent breath driven by the insidious earth borne squalls of Mike Paparo, his delivery a scathing abuse and graze upon emotions. The repetitive grooved hook which pervades the song enchants and niggles with a tortuous tease which with its insidiously persistent ignites eager acceptance and defiant antipathy. The persuasion is merciless though and submission to the erosive imagination and tar thick power of song and band is a given, the guitars of Steven Russell and Trey Dalton brewing a perpetual mix of invention and that repetition which magnetises the senses towards them whilst the bass of Joe Kerkes has a delicious hunger which drools over every oppressive note.

The following piece The Long Road Home comes in two movements, the first Iron Gate a simmering and shimmering blaze of reflective acoustic guitar and sonic spirals of sound lighting the sky of the track whilst an emotive resonance brews from the rest of the band to surround the expressive heart of the track. It eventually escalates into a brief blistering intrusion before settling down as the second part opens up its again restrained and isolated passion through coaxing guitars, shuffling beats, and biting ambient winds. The track is a reflection inspiring piece which unleashes more energy and emotion the further across its soundscape it goes, its gait and energy rising to compliment the almost pictorial and reminiscent touch it offers. Everything though leads to a maelstrom driven climax of blackened malignance with sonic scarring and savage rhythms to match the exhausting serpentine vocal abrasion. The two pieces combined are an enthralling confrontation as unique to the opener and tracks to follow but united in its overwhelming strength and emotive foreboding.

Destroyer is pure corrosion in aural form, every second from its invidious vortex of grooved toxin and lumbering predatory rhythms through to the enveloping raw vocal hatred and unrelenting light suppressing persistence, a thoroughly compelling and deeply welcomed transgressor to senses and emotions. Into the latter part of its mission of intent the band shifts and twists the track with captivating inventive additions in sound and energy but never loosens its cruel consumptive embrace.

At this point the album has already convinced the passions of their destination but with the simply stunning ‘sblood leaves them orgasmic in lust. The song is a classic, one of the most thrilling tracks heard anywhere in a long time. The drums and rhythms of Childers are sensational, a torrent of vicious enterprise and rabid savagery matched by the carnivorous bass and ravenous riffs. The track for its whole gnaws and gnaws upon the senses, with the moment where bass and drum are left alone to unleash their own ruinous ravaging instructive and destructive to all primal instincts. The track is a blistering chaos which with ease sucks the listener into its innovative and towering mass, a declaration which applies to the whole of the exhilarating and awe igniting album.

Through the remaining furnace of imagination and aggressive energy in the tracks Westward and its dramatic ferocity, the instrumental Love Absolute, and the epic imposing closing title track, Sky Burial is a phenomenal release which will impact on fans, bands, and the various genres they embrace ahead. If the likes of Neurosis, Melvins, Darkthrone, Kylesa, and Rwake pave your passions than Inter Arma have something to stretch your heart further.

https://www.facebook.com/INTERARMA

9/10

RingMaster 19/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Six Feet Under: Unborn

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    Approaching Unborn the new and tenth album from Tampa death metallers Six Feet Under there was a mix of expectations after hearing the songs making up the release were written around the same time as those on their more than decent previous album Undead of last year. Would they be tracks which were deemed not good enough or suitable for their previous album or could they stand alone with equal or superior results? It does not take too long to realise they certainly have the strength and quality to match those on the last album though equally they do not leap beyond it in standards or engagement either. It is basically a sister release to Undead, a sideways step or second part depending how you look at it which leaves one more than satisfied but devoid of any fired up passion towards it.

With a new line-up of guitarists Ola Englund and Steve Swanson, bassist Jeff Hughell, drummer Kevin Talley (Dying Fetus, Misery Index, Chimaira), and the distinctive corrosive tones of band founder Chris Barnes (ex-Cannibal Corpse), Six Feet Under return to the scene of ‘the crime’ satisfyingly created with Undead to give arguably a more vicious and visceral musical breath to the again Metal Blade Records released Unborn. The songs making up the album again are borne from when Barnes wrote with a group of guitarists/songwriters in Ben Savage (Whitechapel), Rob Arnold (ex-Chimaira) and Jari Laine (Torture Killer), a union which has brought rich rewards across both albums.

The album makes an initially gentle approach with inviting guitar caresses to open up Neuro Osmosis but is soon opening up itsSix Feet Under - Unborn muscles and intent with dramatic grooves and caging rhythms whilst Barnes exploits every syllable of his delivery with a corruptive and intimidating abrasive primal growl. The song whips and scores the ear with accomplished and inventive sonic intimidation crafted into barbed lures which equally seduce and threaten. It is a pleasing start which captures the imagination ready for the following encounters starting with the prowling Prophecy. The track swaggers with spite and devious intent knowing its weaponry of sinewy riffs and hungry rhythms is a seduction hard to resist. The song does make the keenest persuasion and ticks all the boxes a musical appetite has but its failure to find anything unique to really excite slightly defuses its promising strengths a little.

It is a good start though and leaves one more than happy to delve deeper into the release with an immediate reward from the outstanding Zombie Blood Curse. The track stomps with confidence and magnetic unrelenting purpose, the guitars chugging with a greedy hunger and bass adding extra raptorial malevolence to the rampant endeavour. Mid-way the track slips into a sonic enticement which initially feels wrong but soon leaves an appealing flavour before the song returns to its carnally conceived romp. It is by far the best track on the album and a rival to the greatest moments on the previous album too.

The likes of Decapitate, the carnivorous Fragment with Barnes at his most venomous, and The Sinister Craving with crippling drum skills from Talley carving up the senses, all make their mark though without lighting any rages or fires inside. Despite that the album continues to satisfy and pull the listener into its firm grip squeezing with extra thrills through Alive to Kill You and Psychosis. The first of the two chews and exhausts the senses with a riotous and eager bloodlust honed by the vocals and sharp guitar scything across the ear whilst the second moulds and perverts emotions with fiery sonic teasing and imaginatively destructive guitar confrontation.

Unborn is certainly a strong and pleasing release which alongside the last album sees Six Feet Under finding a much more widely palatable and impressive presence with vital grooves and moments of inciting invention to those not already persuaded by the band. Whether it will convince all that the band is their new passion is unlikely but neither will the album leave any depth of displeasure in its wake.

https://www.facebook.com/sixfeetunder

7/10

RingMaster 19/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Trade: Fight Club

by Graeme McInnes

by Graeme McInnes

The past three years has seen UK alternative rock band The Trade earn a strong reputation and an eagerly growing fanbase through their impressive line performances which have seen the band shared stages with bands such as The Undertones, The Buzzcocks, The Twang, The Twilight Sad, The Xcerts, Chris Helm, Mark Morriss and The Underground Hero’s to name a few, and the release of their debut album Lie in the Dark in 2011. Since its well-received release the band has kept interest in them high with a series of singles of which Fight Club from the album is the latest. The enjoyable song is also another enterprising lure to strong anticipation ahead of the release of their second album later this year.

Consisting of vocalist Ross Milne, guitarists Stevie Morris and Liam Moir, bassist/backing vocalist Drew McLaren, and drummer Sean Hollowmind, the quintet from Angus in Scotland creates guitar driven music which with ease captures the imagination. The new single is a prime slice of their invention and a pleasing invitation into the band, a song which takes no time in engaging fully and bringing a vibrant stroll of fresh melodies and guitar lined craft to bear.

The track opens with firm but restrained riffs which niggle the air with a slightly agitated breath whilst the expressive vocals of Milne engage the ear with its fine gravelly texture. Soon a throaty bassline joins the affair paced by crisp drum beats and a brewing hunger to the song itself. Into its stride the track offers further sonic flames upon the solid and inviting hooks of the song as well as crescendos of energies which suggest the song is going to explode into more muscular purpose but instead remains in its boisterous stance to tease and equally disappoint and thrill.

Fight Club with its emotive lilt lyrically and to the vocals brings a certain hunger in the listener to check out the impending album from the band at the very least. The single is probably not the finest moment of the band to date but undoubtedly a perfect way to walk into their creative embrace.

www.the-trade.co.uk

www.facebook.com/thetradeoffical

7/10

RingMaster 19/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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