Concrete Lung – Subtract Nerve EP


We all know music can intimidate and bully the senses into either submission or rapid fleeing, at times sounds can even corrode the edge of reality into numbness but for sheer lethal intent none come as dangerous and viciously intrusive as the Subtract Nerve EP from synapse destructors Concrete Lung. The release is a violation which pours sonic venom into every atom and pore of sanity with craft and imagination. It will have many hiding and quaking in fear but for others it will be molten pleasure and a collection of malevolent bred tracks which seduce completely with exhausting and destructive creativity.

Released via Armalyte Industries and only available in a physical format (CD), which is very apt as the outstanding EP is as physical as it is aural; Subtract Nerve follows the acclaimed vinyl-only Die Dreaming single with an even harsher and heavy weighted intensity. Consisting of William Riever (bass guitar, keyboards, chants) and Ed Oxime (guitar, vocals, drum programming), Concrete Lung gnaw away at the senses and mind, their songs and new EP a bleak exploration of the futility of existence and its toll on the soul, an investigation which eats away at thoughts and passions to leave wasted remnants of hope and presumed safe existence in its ravenous wake.

User makes the first incision into the mind, its opening acid burning sonic lancing accompanied by whispered shadows and a CL_SN_FB_Teaser_2Dshamanic chant. Roving beats soon add their menace to the sizzling slow burning heat, the gait slow and prowling. It is a worrisome encounter at this point but not threatening, that is until the intensity expels its caustic pressure and weight upon the ear, harsh vocals slowly squalling around the lumbering mountainous depths of sound. With harmonic backing chants there is still a ‘lighter’ appeal veining the muscular leviathan of energy and intent, the scowling vocal corrosiveness of Oxime working the passions and mind as potently as the pungent sounds. The track brings the industrial essences of Ministry, Godflesh and early Pitchshifter to beat upon the listener, the EP bred of the same toxicity but taking it to the darkest destructive and emotionally destroying depths possible. Continually shifting to tease and consume alternately and often simultaneously, the opener makes a mighty beginning to the rapacious and primal consummation between band and passions.

The following Self-Shriek (Intensity) is instantly a carnivorous torrent of rabid riffs, flesh bruising vocals, and disorientating industrial beats. It is a knee buckling start which allows glimpses of mercy and for breaths to be taken with steps into hypnotic and deceptively tempting asides, but generally snatches then back into its predatory jaws before the listener can grasp their safer climes. It is a scintillating ride of abuse and carnal stimulation accelerating the ardour bred by its predecessor into a more lustful subservience, though that soon is surpassed by the best track on the release.

Rot And Seethe sears the senses with a sonic wash initially, scalding their surface with toxic caresses before being joined by savage swipes of mordant intensity, riffs born from rabidity, and skin flailing rhythmic tantalising, the union violent and hungry. It also expels a festering erosive breath which works away behind the severe surface and energy. It is a masterful conjuration of pain and seduction, a ravishing which ignites the passions whilst sterilising hope and life from their remaining refuges. It leaves ears ringing, nerves curled up into the fetal position, and the body displaced from reality; it is noise at its very provocative and majestic best.

Things get no easier as firstly Waste scars further the already entrenched wounds, its voracious and unslakable greed a vitriolic sonic fire which devours mercilessly through its scathing destructive discord embrace whilst Flux, a re-recording of their epic track, is pure aural cancer, taking an already great track into new pit seeded filth.

With a hidden track also waiting to gorge on the senses, the song sonic mercury with a predaceous toxin, Subtract Nerve is a deliciously vile slice of sonic alchemy. As said it will not be for everyone but if you like feeling and breathing your sounds whilst being taken to the darkest grievous places than Concrete Lung have the perfect vehicle.


RingMaster 03/07/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Dark Dark Horse – Centuries

Dark Dark Horse

At times deeply mesmeric and perpetually evocative, Centuries the debut album from Dark Dark Horse is a release which wraps an emotive and imagination arm around senses and thoughts from start to finish. It is an entrancing and enticing collection of songs which maybe do not light burning fires in the passions but certainly stokes them into strong satisfaction.

Dark Dark Horse is the collaboration between producer Jamie Ward (Maybeshewill/ex Kyte) and vocalist James Stafford (kids in cars), two musicians from Leicestershire, UK combining their individual creativity and invention into something evocative and aurally descriptive. Initial songs from the pair found strong responses from fans and media whilst moving to the live arena the pair enlisted Joe Norledge and Robin Southby (Maybeshewill) to the band which soon found itself supporting the likes of Mono, The Twilight Sad, Clock Opera and Fossil Collective. Approached by Japanese label Rallye (Toro Y Moi, Au Revoir Simone, The Joy Formidable), the band released debut full length Centuries in Japan in 2010, but now via Function Records it has a UK release to trigger another enthused wave of deserved attention for band and release.

Opener Sharks instantly seduces the ear with electronic teases and the wonderfully expressive and riveting vocals of Stafford. It 582009_601833463174250_2083362697_nis tantalising introduction which explores the senses as the song permeates the now shimmering air above its magnetic temptation and rhythmic intrigue. As with all the songs its gait is dreamy, slow yet bursting with an enthused breath and evocative inducements which colour thoughts and imagination. The warm ambience cultured and caressing the listener from within the song adds to the sirenesque mystique of the track, something the album as a whole creates to inspire and spark emotions and reflections which one suspects will be individual to each immersing within its call.

The following Ethics and In A Lifetime Before bring their individual melodic and plaintive designs to caress the ear, the first with rhythmic enterprise within a swarming wind of suggestive melodic palette of vibrant sonic paint and the second through its almost music box like simplicity and elegance coaxed into brighter flames by the continuing to impress vocals of Stafford, whilst keys and electro scatter their own magnetic bait. Neither lives up to the heights of the first song but both leave the listener enveloped in their own thoughts and reflection driven aural summer.

Through the likes of the sparkling Spit out Regret, the bewitching and sonically hazy Southwest of Orion, and the enchanting Midnight Mass, a song which carries winds of melodic beauty expelling mini sonic crescendos of elegance, the album raises further pinnacles to admire and greedily feast upon whilst Mercury Nevada offers an expansive journey for thoughts and emotions through an atmospheric, slightly melancholic but tension free evocative and sultry tapestry. Arguably overlong but completely enthralling, the track evolves before the ear into a new and equally compelling musical narrative halfway through to leave its criticism of its length nothing more than being picky.

Every one of the ten songs on Centuries leave an impressive if not always lingering mark but there is never a moment when you wish to move swiftly on to another track, each a delightful and distinct trait of the overall character of the album, the closing title track the final piece of the sonic jigsaw and rounding off with skilfully sculpted melodic grandeur a release which sways and weaves a fresh and fascinating musical conversation and intimacy with mind and heart.

Though it did not send passions raging or flames coursing through the veins, Centuries is a release destined to find its worthy place in the soundtracks of many lives whilst Dark Dark Horse is a project destined to even greater triumphs and recognition.


RingMaster 03/07/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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