Grumpynators – 666 Rpm

grumpynators pic

What do you get if you merge psychobilly, hard rock, and hungry metal into one bruising riot? Whatever it is called Danish band Grumpynators is probably the best at it, certainly on the evidence of their latest EP 666 Rpm. Rife with rousing and aggressive rock ‘n’ roll or what they call Danish Motorbilly, the five track release is a thrilling muscular storm which unleashes all the primal pleasures inside with hungry energy and rapacious devilment.

Formed in Copenhagen in the January of 2011 by ex-members and crew of Taggy Tones and Volbeat, Grumpynators made their live debut at the Danish underground festival Barnyard Rumble in the August of the same year going on to build a big reputation for their performances which has also seen them tour with Magtens Korridorer in 2012 and Volbeat earlier this year. Musically the quartet of vocalist/guitarist Emil Øelund, guitarist Christian Nørgaard, double bassist Jakob Øelund, and drummer Per Fisker create a presence and confrontation which is like being accosted by the joint animosity of Motorhead and Nekromantix wrapped in the shadowed intent of Johnny Cash, Resurex, Social Distortion, and Volbeat. Equally the band has a distinct flavour which sets them apart from the rest, first shown with their first demo EP late 2011 and evolved into real brute force with 666 Rpm. The new EP is an instigator for limbs and instinctive passions to raise a storm and enjoy rock ‘n ‘roll at its riveting best.

As soon as the rampaging hypnotic beats of Fisker open up first track No Monsters In My Bed, an instantaneous connection Grumpynators+30827045331seeded in a personal love of psychobilly erupts, the spine of the impending song spawned from the same passion. The choppy riffs and potent bass slaps confirm the stance and poised around the Lemmy like growls of Oelund makes for a formidable and infectious lure to which defences crumble immediately. Stomping across the senses like a gang of lustful rockabillies on a Saturday night cruise, the track punches and prods the ear potently with rhythmic provocation and guitar lashes which coursing with sonic flames which leaves the passions alight. Virulent in its addictiveness and merciless in its ability to have limbs and voice joining in its charge, the song is incendiary glory which steals top honours on the release straight away though it is seriously challenged as the other songs state their declarations.

The following Paranormal Heads equally has sinews and aggressive breath unleashed from its opening seconds before sculpting an epidemic of infectiousness which is impossible to resist. Its presence has a more heavy metal/rock intention and body which merges essences of The Meteors into the more dominant demands of again Motorhead and the likes of Anthrax and The Wildhearts. Once again it is a track which recruits the listener into its dirty honest sounds with ease and leaves lungs and senses gasping for breath once it takes its leave.

1985 has a swagger and blues lilt to its slower crawling gait aligned to a southern psychobilly call which swings and lures the senses and body into a teasing hard rock waltz. As it progresses the song expands and opens up sonic flumes of enterprise and melodic rock flames which sizzle on the flesh before that confident croon of the track returns to command further physical union from its recipients.

The release is completed by the stalking Miss You and then Grumpynator. The first song again brings essences of cowpunk and rockabilly into a feisty metallic boil of sound and invention which erupts to singe the senses and feed the now fully evolved hunger for the release. With a Volbeat meets Mad Sin and Tiger Army with strong whispers of Metallica and Flogging Molly to its seduction, the song brings ardour into another pinnacle of lustful submission whilst the final song is unrelenting heavy metal/hard rock  you can only compare to Motorhead in sound and quality.

It all makes for an exciting and impossibly satisfying release which marks Grumpynators as a band set to ignite and push rock music on with striking power and efficiency in the near future. Volbeat now has a real rival as Denmark’s best metal/rock band, though to be honest every rock ‘n’ roll band in the world had better watch out as Grumpynators is coming to challenge their status and they do not accept no as a response.

http://www.grumpynators.dk/

10/10

RingMaster 22/07/2013

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MiXE1 – Lights Out EP

mixe1

UK electro pop band MiXE1 started out in 2010 as the solo project of Mike Evans and took no time in impressing with the first two EPs Module 01 and Module 02. Creating a warm but adventurously impacting blend of electro and pop around a rock spine the pair of releases enchanted and evoked with their absorbing and seemingly very personal invitation. Since the summer of last year when the second EP was unveiled, Evans has taken the project up another level with further additions to its line-up whilst the already openly evolving and growing sound has blossomed into a sweltering and enthralling blaze of riveting potency.

Consisting of guitarist Lee Towson and drummer Lee O’Brien (formerly of Indie-Rock band Load) alongside Evans (former guitarist of alt-metal band Broken Butterfly X), with bassist Marcos Farias making the band a quartet for live shows, the Hatfield based MiXE1 release their new collection of songs via Static Distortion Records. Though we say new the songs themselves are revisited and explored further songs written between the two previous EPs but such the growing creative intensity and growth of the band they feel as if they are bred from a much later time whilst equally showing the strength of the songwriting from day one. With debut album Starlit Skin scheduled for later in the year, MiXE1 (pronounced Mikes 1) are set to have the rest of the year melting under a different kind of heat.

The title track opens up the release and immediately has the senses shielding their eyes under an electro radiance which shimmersLights Out EP Cover vigorously as a moody shadow lurks in the sun. The vocals of Evans are as compelling and inviting as ever, his warm seductive tones wrapping around song and emotions as drums and guitar revel in the invigorating breath of the electronic wash. At this precise moment the UK is in the clasp of a heatwave and Lights Out, song and release make the perfect soundtrack whilst intensifying the sultriness of the atmosphere. The song is a passionate affair for ear and emotions, one hinting danger but ultimately caressing with infectious charm and craft.

The outstanding Part Of Me follows and ventures into the rock suggestiveness which prowled its predecessor. From a short sonic blistering rife with temptation, the track leaps into a contagious stomp of crisp rhythms, scathing riffs, and electronic enterprise.  Like a mix of Celldweller and John Foxx with a snarl of Pendulum to its darker corners, the song is a thrilling riot down flumes of exhausting and invigorating imagination littered with appetising barbs and mesmeric kisses from music through to vocals. There is also a strong essence of label mates Ghost In The Static to its muscular addictiveness which only leads to greater ardour for its immense presence.

     Pulling You Back To My World instantly has an eighties electro pop feel to its touch, the initial wave of rich sound Blancmange like whilst the incendiary hook reminds of early Modern English. Another track which is virulent in its appeal and graceful in poise it seduces with each emotive note, the song simply growing in stature with each subsequent listen, the vocals of Evans wonderfully assisted by those of Amie Morandarte-Evans entrancing whilst the mix of guitar and synths is pure magnetism driven by the influential rhythms. Along with Part Of Me, the song steals top accolades on the release and alone makes the hunger for the forthcoming album greedy.

Both Find You and This Time continue the scintillating melodic and emotional fire of the release, the first a gentler though muggy in its ambience, encounter which tenderly walks along thoughts and imagination urging them with a muscular intensity into deeper reflection whilst its successor is an almost savage confrontation, in comparison to earlier songs. With fire in its eyes it prowls and challenges whilst still flowing with melodic beauty and sentiment. The track again shows the depth of exploration in the heart and creativity of the band which again makes Starlit Skin an exciting proposition.

Completed by a remix of Part Of Me by another Static Distortion band Defeat, Lights Out is a breath-taking encounter. The final song which challenges our personal natural reticence towards remixes with an inventive face to the track, though still the original holds it in its shadow, bringing one of the brightest and exhilarating aural massages of the year to a close. Released July 27th the EP sets MiXE1 as one of the forces which will guide UK electro pop to its greatest heights, hell, probably the world’s.

https://www.facebook.com/mixe1

9/10

RingMaster 22/07/2013

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Circle Of Reason – These Hands And This Mind EP

circle of reason

If like us you were excited by the debut A Favour For A Stranger EP from UK alternative rock band Circle Of Reason, you are going to be grinning from ear to ear with their new release, the These Hands And This Mind EP. The five track EP realises all the promise of its predecessor and more. It is a release which aligns itself with thoughts and emotions with reflective and evocative potency whilst coaxing the passions further with sounds which caress, rumble through, and energise the ear with a maturer imagination capturing craft. Hopes of greater things from the band in the wake of their previous EP were inevitable and rich but the Southampton quartet now makes it feel like we short changed their potential with the outstanding release.

Since forming the foursome of vocalist/guitarist Simon Osman, guitarist Gary Slade, bassist Sam Cogher, and drummer Andy Milwain, have earned a strong reputation through their live performances alone which has seen them play with the likes of Feed The Rhino, Marmozets, Girlschool, Lafaro, Fighting With Wire, The Smoking Hearts, Landscapes, Inme, Zico Chain, Attention Thieves, and more. Their video singles and the A Favour For A Stranger EP equally built up their stance, garnering acclaim and widespread national coverage from the underground media to the likes of Big Cheese Magazine, Scuzz TV, Kerrang TV, and Lava. Already having earned comparisons to the likes of Coheed and Cambria, Soundgarden, and The Smashing Pumpkins, Circle of Reason are now ready to step onto higher levels and with These Hands And This Mind they have made an impressive first step.

Released Monday 29th July, the EP steps forward first with the single from the release Don’t Be Still. It is an instantly appealing cover_240mix of punchy rhythms and fiery guitar caresses around the ear, the air soon heated and thick from the sonic and passionate endeavour. As the again impressive tones of Osman stand astride the creative sounds with rich expression and emotive potency aided with the equally notable backing vocals of Cogher, the song wraps its sinewy intensity and melodic flames tightly around thoughts and passions. With only the disjointed break midway a minor niggle the song leaves a starting to stir ardour smouldering in its wash though it takes the following pair of songs to truly ignite its hunger.

Next up Home is a slowly burning triumph; its initial vocal and guitar welcome a glorious tender lure which only suggests you should share its company, though this persuasion is soon heightened as the bass of Cogher offers darker shadows and the beats of Milwain frame it all with rhythmic concentration.  It is when the track erupts and expels its fullest sinews of energy and passion though, subsequently merging both aspects into a scintillating progressive adventure, that the song rips full submission from the heart. It is a mountain of a piece which alone shows how far the band has come and evolved in sound and songwriting whilst still offering a promise of much more. As with the first EP, there is a strong feel of eighties band The Mighty Lemon Drops to Circle of Reason, vocally and emotionally which is most apparent in the equally stunning Themes Amongst Thieves. Riffs and rhythms carve out a terrific flight of metallic excellence which leaves lungs breathless whilst vocally once more Osman swoops across the rugged landscape with a grace hand in hand with the melodic elegance that permeates every breath the song takes. The two songs easily steal top honours on the EP and do not be surprised if they, and especially the second of the pair, turn up as the next single.

The following Novel also has a vigorous presence to its structure with guitars coarse flames across the cage of rhythmic demands but equally it explores its heart and emotive depths with a melodic and progressive adventure which is mesmeric and passion driven. Like all songs and the EP as a whole, the track just gets better and better with each dramatic engagement and leaves the appetite for the band verging on feverish.

The closing Sleep is a slow croon which captivates musically and vocally. It does not quite spark the passions as powerfully as other tracks but still leaves the richest flavour on the appetite and provides further evidence of the evolution of the band already and ahead.

These Hands And This Mind has marked Circle Of Reason as one of the most thrilling emerging bands in UK rock and with you feel so much more to come. Really it is hard not to be excited about this band.

www.facebook.com/circleofreason

9/10

RingMaster 21/07/2013

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Circle Of Reason – Don’t Be Still – Official HD Music Video

KingBathmat – Overcoming The Monster

KingBathmat Publicity Photo 3

The fact that Overcoming The Monster, the new album from UK progressive rockers KingBathmat, is their seventh full length release but the first time they have come to our attention really drives home the fact that we, and I suggest all of us are only scratching the surface of music and the depth of good bands, no matter how much we think we are in control and knowledgeable of what is out there. Better late than never certainly applies to this outstanding release as well as relief that they finally have ventured upon our radar, though again a mystery as to why a band this good has remained in the shadows for so long especially as going by those in the know, Overcoming The Monster is an album in a strong line of impressive releases from the Hastings quartet.

KingBathmat musically is a band wonderfully impossible to pin down. Hailed as a progressive rock band they equally employ all essences from psychedelic and alternative rock through to electronic, grunge, experimental metal and more into their unique creativity. Formed by songwriter /vocalist/guitarist John Bassett the band has unleashed a sextet of albums from debut Son of a Nun in 2003 through to the acclaimed Truth Button which came out at the start of the year. With David Georgiou (keyboards), Lee Sulsh (bass), and Bernie Smirnoff (drums) completing the line-up, KingBathmat creates a tempest of invention and imaginative adventure which is impossible to resist or escape once within its riveting clutches. Overcoming The Monster is a compelling flight of melodic fire, rhythmic provocation, and sonic beauty all wrapped in an ingenuity of craft and thought which leaves the listener quite breathless. With tracks which investigate the theme ‘of psychological obstacles (monsters of the mind) that are manufactured in our thoughts, both internally through our insecurities, externally by the outside influence of others and collectively through the mass media which uses fear as a tool to manipulate our perceptions’, the Stereohead Records album evokes and ventures into personal reflection igniting emotional dialogue with its potent premise and presence whilst all the time teasing and soaking the senses in music which is simply enthralling.

Opening track Sentinel makes a muscular entrance, riffs and rhythms claiming their piece of the senses whilst a brewing sonic Overcoming The Monster Album Covermist wraps deviously around their capture. It is an immediately gripping start which once in command from its dramatic stance, relaxes into an emotive plea of keys and the vocals which paint the thought cradling narrative. The tenderly toned weave continues to expand its call with growing keys and group harmonies whilst the bass adds shadows that menace as they lurk within and stalk the melodic blaze of sound and feeling. As the song ventures further from its strong start across an equally intense if slightly underwhelming course there is a brooding sense of something impending. This becomes a solid gripping breath as, and not for the only time on the album, the track evolves into a potent and aurally dexterous mesh of ingenuity and contagion. Just beyond midway of the near nine minute track it unleashes the bass to roam with a new raptorial hunger framed by the equally greedy rhythms of Smirnoff whilst the vocals of Bassett ride their refreshing caging with expressive might. As riffs add their ‘savagery’ for the next evolution of the song, it climbs all over the senses as sonic ropes of invention tether it securely to the passions.

Though it took a while to fully persuade the song makes an impressive start to the release which is soon surpassed by firstly Parasomnia. The haunting opening child’s toy box like charm is a breath of innocence against the disturbing ambience enveloping the senses behind it, the tones of Bassett shaping the narrative with a continuing magnetic pull. Into its full presence the shadows dissipate as melodic hues paint their caresses from guitar and keys onto the imagination. Combining flames of heavy rock, metallic angst, and melodic washes, the song captivates from start to finish with its unpredictable grandeur, thoughts of Mars Volta, ELO, King Crimson, and most definitely Horslips spawning from the shifting spicery within the scintillating song. For all its triumph it is soon eclipsed by the stunning title track, easily the best song on the towering album. The niggling sonic coaxing which introduces the song is a continual temptation throughout whilst around it the band ebb and flow in crystalline invention, infectious melodies, and multi-flavoured invention. There is a familiarity to the track which is deceiving but certainly as it unwinds its striking persuasion and mystique the likes of Muse, Comsat Angels, and Soundgarden as well as Porcupine Tree and Floyd spring to mind.

Both the layered Superfluous, with its tantalising wealth of textures and jazz bred soaring heat, and the smouldering Reality Mining lead the listener into new teasing excursions of epidemically alluring emotional and aural exploits whilst the closing Kubrick Moon reaches into absorbing space for another original baptism of progressive and psychedelic musical chemistry. The trio of songs make for a towering conclusion to one of the very best progressive releases this year, one though completely unique in voice we suggests stands easily by the side of the new releases from The Ocean and Between The Buried And Me…it is that good.

http://www.kingbathmat.com/

9.5/10

RingMaster 22/07/2013

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Tankus the Henge – Cakewalk

Tankus the Henge pic

If you are looking for a joyful and infectious party to romp through the summer with then UK band Tankus the Henge have the perfect soundtrack to match the revelry in their new single Cakewalk. The song is a teasing escapade through numerous flavours and mischievous sounds which wherever you hide your emotions it will find and ignite them into a stomp of contagious devilment.

Described as six sharped dressed and bedraggled gentlemen hailing from some of the more eccentric parts of London Town, Tankus the Henge since finalising their current line-up in 2011 has been on a whirlwind of live performances and the creation of their self –titled debut album from which Cakewalk steps forth. Brewing up a storm across the UK, Europe and into the likes of America, Albania, and the Isle of Wight, the London based sextet has created a carnival of sound and energy which leaves all drenched in invigorated rascality. Their music blends everything from reggae, blues, and funk to ragtime and gypsy punk, with the single the perfect introduction for all newcomers to a band described as ‘Like The Clash from New Orleans.’

From the opening crack of drums of Will Stanley and the fiery fanfare of brass from trumpeter Jake Stoddart and saxophonist Louis Schultz-Wiremu, the song leaps and romps around the ear with the energy of a playground and enterprise of a colour drenched circus. It is an irresistible temptation taken to another beach of persuasion when vocalist Jaz Delorean dances vocally over his simple contagious keys whilst the bass of Dan Mason prods it all with its throaty taunts and the guitar of Tim Fulker skates around and into the addictive charm to flesh out the brewing heat and lyrical exploits. The best way to describe the song is Mano Negra, Ian Dury and the Blockheads, and Gogol Bordello meets Chas & Dave hand in hand with early Squeeze and the Flaming Lips, or to put it a better way something which is deliciously riotous and incendiary to the passions.

Cakewalk is one of those simple and honest treats which no matter your prime tastes, lights up the day and heart with a virulence which is unstoppable. Go get infected by Tankus the Henge is our suggestion.

http://www.tankusthehenge.com/

9/10

RingMaster 22/07/2013

 

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Mexico Indigo – The Trumpet

Mexico Indigo pic

Taken from debut album Single Blind Design which came out at the beginning of the year, new single The Trumpet is a foot stomping piece of rock ‘n’ roll which may not get the heart over excited but certainly leaves the listener rife with energy whilst reliving the contagious call of the song long after its departure from the ear. It is an undemanding and easily accessible slice of rock music from Mexico Indigo which ticks all the right boxes for enjoyment and in inspiring further interest in their full length release.

Formed in Woking in 2008 and now London based, the trio making up Mexico Indigo of vocalist guitarist Stuart Camara, bassist/vocalist Matt Kingston, and drummer Phil Kingston draw influences from the likes of Nirvana, Sex Pistols ,The Clash, The Beatles, and The Libertines into their clean and engaging sound. Their early demos and gigs took them to the attention of Strummerville who gave them funding to record a three track EP in a recording studio. Shows alongside the likes of Viva Brother, Dog is Dead, and Wet Nuns followed as well as significant radio airplay throughout London and further afield such as in places like Brazil. As mentioned the ten track album opened up 2013 and has since drawn strong attention which The Trumpet can only reinforce.

As evidenced by the single there is a punk breath to their lighter rock presence which gives a good bite to the music even if intimidation is left on the drawing board. It is a pleasing mix which brings a contagion that is hard to dismiss or refuse and though originality may also be light on the single it matters little when feet are adding their contribution to the fun. From the opening shuffle of drums and jangly guitars the song lures the listener in with a solid hand whilst the vocals of Camara, without being dramatically gripping take the lyrical narrative through the ear as easily as the blues whispering sound alongside them. The melodic hook which waves throughout the song is prime Buzzcocks (especially reminiscent of Everybody’s Happy Nowadays), whilst the persuasive urgency of the track is punk bred which at times reminds of The Motors. The combination is a song that leaves plenty to enthuse about.

It is probably fair to say there is nothing dramatically remarkable about The Trumpet but it easily recruits emotions and appetite into its richly pleasing romp which is all anyone can ask of a song to find strong satisfaction.

https://www.facebook.com/MexicoIndigoOfficial

7.5/10

RingMaster 22/07/2013

 

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