Calling All Astronauts – Post Modern Conspiracy

Calling All Astronauts CD art_Page_1

There are times when a band fills a gap in a genre or sound with something distinctly unique and impressive but is still wrapped in a mystery as to why it has not been delivered wider awareness and recognition. One such proposition is UK electro goth punks Calling All Astronauts, a band which from its first release has lit up ears and passions with their stirring and incendiary blend of guitar carved alternative rock, gothic soaked shadows, and electro/industrial bred toxicity. It is a stunning fusion which ignites the passions and incites thought led rebellion. So as to why still the Fulham based trio even after a clutch of outstanding singles are still relatively undiscovered just defies understanding but with the release of their exceptional debut album Post Modern Conspiracy, the hopes and feeling that things will surely change are at a peak.

The fourteen track release is a blaze of imaginative and snarling sounds, the band’s potent lyrical attack on society given an CAAimposing and riveting platform of caustic and invigorating rock in which to shell its restraints. Consisting of David B (vocals, keys, programming), J Browning (guitar), and Kristi Bury (bass), Calling All Astronauts has left a searing mark with their tracks since releasing their first two track single Living In The Shadow Of The Red Flag/ Someone Like You. The seeds of the band go back further though with J Browning and the band Caffeine, who he played in, being managed by David (ex-US:UK) whilst Kristi and David were also previously married to each other. Since emerging in 2011 the band has earned strong acclaim for their live performances which has seen them play alongside the likes of Echo & The Bunnymen, PWEI, Sigue Sigue Sputnik, and A Place To Bury Strangers whilst also headlining and selling out Alan Magee’s Death2Disco at Notting Hill Arts Club. A quartet of singles has also fired up greedy anticipation for this debut album within fans and the blogging media alone, an appetite which will be soon breathing heavily and intensely over the impacting triumph the album it shows itself to be. Two of those singles took the band to the No. 1 slot in the Twitter Music Chart to breed further excitement and dare one say impatience to the wait for the long time in the making Post Modern Conspiracy, but there will be no complaints, only feverishly devouring musical jaws upon its exhilarating body now it is here.

The album opens with that previous single track Someone Like You, a song which rips the attention from everything else but its own pulsating invitation. From the first second the bass and guitar snarl at the ear, Kristi offering an intimidating seduction with her dark conjured tones and the guitar of J producing an acidic groove which triggers instant rapture. With heavy dark shadows offering their own vibrant compulsion before the senses there is a distinct eighties wash at work with the likes of Play Dead and Leitmotiv coming to mind as the song prowls and stomps with irresistible potency from first note to last. Virulently contagious and equally magnetic creatively, the track is the perfect and strongest start to the album, an immense beginning soon matched and continued by Freaks and What’s So Good About?

The second track drapes itself in even darker intensive shadows, the beats and electronic invention caustic and magnetic whilst the guitar and bass bring their own individual abrasion to the brooding encounter. More reserved than the starter and with an even harsher lyrical bite, the song places down a gnarly canvas for melodic flames and senses plucking electro scorches to lay their heat and colour. It is a mighty lure driven by the dour yet vibrant vocals of David, the extremes perfectly expelled in a delivery which walks the same shadowed sun as the sounds.

The tracks Scenesters Vs. The World and Politicized – Ignorance Is Not An Excuse attack and evoke attitudes and thoughts with composed and cutting invention in word and sound, the first drenched in a dramatic noir atmosphere around its sinewy exploration and the second locked in an tempest of sonic grazing, coarse riffs, and rapacious energy which provokes and riles up the passions in similar strength to the opener. Through the song and album there is always a loud hint of Sisters Of Mercy spicing things up, essences which are seeded in the early days of that band and filtrated into something which lingers and imprints with thrilling enterprise from the creative ingenuity of  Calling All Astronauts as shown in these songs alone. The mistake to avoid though is to think with these references that band and album are re-treading old sounds and times, but as the likes of the industrial punk fuelled It Could Have Been Lust and the sinister, haunting gothic and bruising ebm embrace of Eye Of God show, that is far from the truth, both songs stunning and riveting unique journeys.

The highlights keep coming track after track, such as in the immense shapes of Simple Man, a song which provokes the senses with thick ambience within which a melodic kaleidoscope sends shards of light and electro seduction into dark corners and the excellent Winter Of Discontent, a confrontation which unleashes another epidemic of infectious and evocative persuasion. The second of the two stands full and bold with an anthemic calling within its premise of dark times, a resonating drone cured atmosphere enveloping the senses and thoughts whilst the emotive vocals and fierce flames of guitar alongside thick bass caresses ensure a forceful and fully inciting treat.

Each subsequent track upon Post Modern Conspiracy cannot resist also capturing and firing up the imagination and passions, Faith In Your Cause and Feel The Pain (Again) especially adding intoxicating fuel to the fire raging within for the release whilst closing track Red Flag confirms again that this is a band of incalculable craft and promise, its invitation of Skids like guitar borne sonic tempting and passion sodden emotion a final irresistible thrill.

Calling All Astronauts as proven by their outstanding album stands before UK rock as one of its most inventive and provocative sparks, and this is just the beginning.

http://callingallastronauts1.bandcamp.com/releases

http://www.callingallastronauts.com/

10/10

RingMaster 15/05/2013

 

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

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Dead Bundy and the Neat Neat Neats -Train To Paradise

DB

    Train To Paradise is the next stop on the ascent of infection brewing psychobillies Dead Bundy and the Neat Neat Neats, an album which builds on their impressive previous release Life Is Hard…Death Is Neat and stretches their sound in further thrilling extensions of flavour and melodic enterprise. Consisting of twelve varied and contagious slices of passion drenched rock n roll, it is an album which grabs ear and passions for a brawling, seducing, and mischievous encounter.

The Minneapolis quartet has induced a loyal and constantly building fanbase since forming around 2010, a following which has grown not only locally but across the US and world through internet recognition. Matthew Sprinkles, Chris Wilson, Cody Hillyard, and Matt Kalsnes, have bred strong recognition for their terrific live shows and equally their releases such as debut album Bad Moon Death Trip of 2011 and undoubtedly last year’s Life Is Hard…Death Is Neat. Fusing influences from the likes of Batmobile, The Quakes, Screaming Jay Hawkins, The Sharks, Mad Sin, and the Frantic Flintstones to their own distinctive rowdiness and invention, the band has continued to earn strong responses and acclaim which you can only see the new release accelerating within the genre.

Opener Graveyard Rhythm immediately grips the senses and feet for a romp across irresistible riffs and fiery melodic temptation whilst the vocals narrate the whole shadow soaked escapade. It is instantly infectious and insatiable in its want to have the listener leaping tombstones with rampant eagerness and a devilish swagger, its hooks and call virulently addictive and persuasive. It is prime psychobilly Dead Bundy style, the distinctive vocals and musical voice of the song taking over immediately where the last album left off ensuring the party is still raging with heat and compelling irresistibility.

The title track soon steps before the ear with southern twisted melodies and busy rhythms igniting the air and ear, its Tarantino movie like breath a persistent and unrelenting stroll down the railroad track of swiftly passing beats and riffs. The song is a delicious warm whisper with energetic hunger which marks the start of the variety and richer depths to the album which were arguably missing on the equally impressive Life Is Hard…Death Is Neat. It begins a ride of unpredictable and adventurous invention for the album with a course which is set well within the walls of psychobilly and rock n’ roll but offering diverse and refreshing sceneries immediately picked up by the following Shipwrecked and City Morgue. The first of the pair saunters in with big boned rhythms and a prowling gait to the bass within again raw melodic heat from the guitar. With vocals as strong a lure to participation as the hooks and barbed drum beckoning, the song is a tune hip swerving was invented for and its ingenious groove a template for lust. It successor raises the dead with another epidemic of addict making riff sculpted hooks and bold bass slaps whilst the mass invitation of the chorus defies death as an excuse not to participate with its punk riled temptation.

Only four songs in and the album has ignited the passions and fired up an even more intense appetite for the rest of the release, a greed soon satisfied by what is possibly the strongest and most magnetic part of what is a wholly captivating album. Dust N Bones leans on the ear with a lone guitar strolling out its notes within a hollowed pocket of air and soon joined by the as ever fine expressive vocals. The rolling beats pulls everything into full view as a western bred melodic tease winds around the senses, the song expanding its chest towards the dusty bold canter through potent and emotive adventure which takes over the course of the excellent song. It is an impossibly infectious lure soon matched and exceeded by the outstanding Dynamite, a song which lights the fuse to full ardour with sinew healthy rhythms, a commanding bass spine, and vocals harmonies which snatch and ignite the imagination. As it strides purposely through the ear the beats offer thoughts of King Kurt and elsewhere Guana Batz inspired melodic infectiousness, the union loaded with punk spawn confrontation for a sensational and album topping encounter…except it is then deposed by the quite masterful Mad Man.

The song teases with an instant delicious groove and subsequently bulging bass fascination to brew up an instant rapture which is soon boiling over as the track flexes its sides for a riotous yet controlled rampage. Hand in hand with the listener the song romps with wantonness to its hooks and rhythmic puppetry which has head and feet rocking like a dog in heat. The track is severe in its narcotic like appeal and one of the best songs within rock ‘n’ roll over recent years.

Both Getting Fucked Up and Pretty Boy Billy continue this new elevation of height for the release, the first with another controlling swing to its gait whilst the second rivals both Dynamite and Mad Man for bragging rights as top dog, though there was only ever going to be one winner. With the country rock lilted Hellbound, the mariachi whispering Ride, and Gimme Rock N Roll with its contents echoing its title, completing the album with strong and pleasing presences, Train To Paradise is a thrilling and inspiring bunch of impossible to restrain rock ‘n’ roll songs. With the release of the exceptional album and the Train To Paradise Tour across the US in its support right now, Dead Bundy and the Neat Neat Neats are looking at a massive and one suggests very successful year ahead.

https://www.facebook.com/DeadBundy

10/10

RingMaster 15/05/2013

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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James Cook – Reverse Engineering (Vol. One)

JC

2013 is a busy year for singer/songwriter/producer /video artist James Cook, who follows up his impressive and successful debut album Arts & Sciences of 2012 with two full length releases this year. Towards the end of the year there is the release of his second solo album Ausland, but before that the ex-Nemo frontman and songwriter is treating us to Reverse Engineering (Vol. One), a seven track album of cover songs which is one big treat. Consisting of songs of artists from the late seventies and early eighties who ignited his passions and one suggests aspirations musically, the album is a delicious re-invention of classics ignited once again with James Cook imagination.

Reverse Engineering scientifically refers to finding advanced technology that is beyond understanding and taking it apart, then from the discovery of how it works creating a new version from the knowledge. This can certainly be applied to the songs upon the album, Cook, in the words of a room about the release, ‘creating an ‘alien twin’ of the original version by dissecting and redesigning the original.’ Bringing in expressive and skilled musicians (the Dollhouse band) to add their charm and passion to the songs, including once more violinist/string arranger Anne Marie Kirby who he worked with on not only Arts & Sciences but also the baroque pop curio The Dollhouse of 2009, Cook has given a new breath and energy to songs upon the release which emerge as a vibrant and thrilling companion to the originals.

The album opens with David Bowie classic Ashes To Ashes and instantly opens up a new expanse of thought towards the song, the a0326705245_2rich emotive tones of violin from Kirby and Ed Bruggeme, viola from Charlie Stock, and the seductive shadows from cellist Terezie Kovalova, wrapping the ear in a rapturous embrace which ignites open feelings. The string quartet is arranged by Kirby who consistently over previous releases with her imaginative arrangements has impressed and pushed songs into deeper impacting textures and evocative visions. As Cook begins the lyrical passage of the song, a new breath seduces the senses from within, the dramatic air and passional strength of the song enveloping with seductive and riveting grandeur but it is a majesty which has no sense of indulgence or self-importance. It is a wonderful version which stands boldly by the side of the original for these ears whilst as mentioned opening up a new shadow and life within the song.

The following track is The Teardrop Explodes song Treason and with its successor Making Plans For Nigel, steals the show on the album. With the guitar of Cook and a wonderfully resonating and throaty bass call from Smity immediately capturing full attention, the track strolls with a sure swagger through to the passions. As with the first and subsequent songs, Cook does not attempt in any way to emulate or cheat off of the delivery of the notable frontmen who bred the originals vocals, but infuses them with his own unique and compelling easy on the ear tones. As the strings of Kirby and Kovalova add their again irresistible presence, the track submerges the emotions in an understated but full wash of melodic beauty with the firm and punchy drums of Tom Marsh providing an equally addictive framework. With the elegance of the strings bringing their suasion through an air of dance and mischief, the track is a waltz come stomp which sparks only the purest adoration.

XTC is probably the first band to truly ignite a full lust of passion towards their sounds for us here but Making Plans For Nigel was the only song which wore out its welcome on the heart though from one of the greatest British bands. Cook has managed to bring the track back to its original glory and surpass it with passion and poetic musical imagination. The same line-up as on the previous track takes the Colin Moulding penned song and turns it into an emotive stroll along the banks of adventure and warm playfulness. They take the simple repetition across the song which helped lose the original version its appeal and treat it to an unpredictable yet familiar energy and sense of pride which itself steps forward to outweigh that of its seed.

Through Hiroshima Mon Amour, a track from the original John Foxx fronted Ultravox! and now given a mesmeric and melodic sunset of a passional sound, and The Go Between’s Bachelor Kisses where vocally and musically there is an incandescent to its invitation which inspires only further submission, the album continues to captivate and thrill. Admittedly as superbly crafted and interpreted as they are they do not match the opening trio of songs but that is just down to the beauty and ingenuity of those earlier gems. Our Lips Are Sealed though does reach up and pull itself up to those heady heights, the Go-Go’s song, also recorded by Fun Boy Three and written by Jane Wiedlin and Terry Hall from the two bands, carving out its own irrepressible niche upon the album with the cello and bass of Kovalova and Cook respectively, offering a deep captivating presence to the wonderfully refreshing and bracing encounter. There is a Walker Brothers feel to the song which only enhances the tonic it brings to ear and soul with each dance within its breath-taking arms.

Completed by an imaginative take on the Kraftwerk track Neon Lights, the song another with the full string quartet painting a unique and inspiring emotive canvas for Cook to lay his narrative, Reverse Engineering (Vol. One) is a passion capturing piece of colour drenched imagination and interpretation, and one hopes is the first of more such projects from the artists as suggested by the title. Though it could be looked at as an appetiser or piece of creativity to bide time before Cook’s next solo album, the masterful treat shows itself as a valid album in its own right even if its appearance comes as a staggered invitation. Released as a free download one song at a time a monthly leading up to Ausland, and with two songs already available, it is an album all should go to without hesitation.

To get the album go to http://jamescook.bandcamp.com/

http://www.jamescookmusic.com

9/10

RingMaster 15/05/2013

 

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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