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 imposing 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.
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright
Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from