Death and the Penguin – Accidents Happen

Death and the Penguin

Providing a clutch of immersive anthems, though may be not in the recognisable sense, Accidents Happen the debut EP from UK indie/rock band Death and the Penguin is not only magnificent stands as one of the most startling and compellingly invigorating releases to hit the senses this year so far. Consisting of six tracks which are as bewitchingly eclectic and striking as they are voraciously imaginative and inciting, the EP is a mouthwatering persuasion which boldly tempts and riotously seduces with an invention and virulence that is unstoppable. For a debut it is extraordinary and for a first step by a band one of the most exciting entrances in a long time.

Taking their name from a satirical novel by Ukrainian Andrey Kurkov, the London quartet of Tobias Smith (vocals, guitar), Christopher Olsen (guitar, keyboard, vocals), Andrew Acred (bass, keyboard, vocals), and Timothy Brennik (drums, percussion, vocals) make a first impression which it is hard to imagine could have been any more potent and incisive then what it is. It is a release which starts off with a stirring proposition and just gets better and bigger with each track, all the while revealing the depths to the band’s songwriting, craft, and adventure whilst soaking it in a promise which more than suggests of even greater things to come.

Opener Snuffed Out instantly awakens thoughts and attention, a blaze of guitar which almost swarms over the senses igniting an instant D&TPAHappetite with its Echo and the Bunnymen toning to the melodic flames leaving the fingers of Olsen and Smith. There is a throaty resonance to the sound which becomes a specific essence of the band across the EP to relish as well as a sweet tasting discord which only accentuates the impact of first impressions. As the song spreads its narrative, a Radiohead like whisper chills the lively ambience as a cleaner and warmer but no less striking version of an At The Drive In like rapaciousness rallies a greedy appetite. It is the dark heavy voice of bass and the coring riffs which steal the thunder though, their continuing likeness to McCulloch and co. irresistible. Though more of a grower than other tracks, it continues to worm its way under the skin and into the psyche, proving to be a dramatic and impossibly infectious not forgetting momentous first slice of temptation.

The following Space 1998 casts a spatial embrace around ears initially, its warm and intriguing elegance asking the imagination to play which it eagerly does, especially with the heavily weighted thump of beats and guitar snarl which joins the beauteous lure. From that union a dazzling mathcore weave of bass and guitar steps forth to toy and quickstep with the senses, their bewildering quickstep and groove unbelievably magnetic. The vocals as in the first song impress from the lead to the eager backing whilst the fire and passion in the band leaves no element unwashed as evidenced by the simply mesmeric chorus. For undefined reasons there is a feel of latter period XTC to the song which only adds to the insatiable funk and jazz bred ingenuity of the stunning and constantly developing landscape.

The song marks a loftier pinnacle in the terrain of the release, elevating past its predecessor before next up An Opening unveils an atmospheric and haunting embrace over the senses. It is a brief and highly evocative piece which swaps the adrenaline fuelled romps of other songs for a melancholic intensity and though it does not inflame emotions as elsewhere the track certainly leads thoughts into a potent venture.

Strange Times has no problem in setting a fuse to a predatory hunger with its roaring entrance; guitars, drums, and keys making a melodic cacophony courted by the ever heavy breath of the bass whilst vocally the band soars with relish and energy. The entrance immediately sparks thoughts of Young Knives though as ever the song twists and lurches through ingenious detours and turns in its way to seducing the passions. Continuing to ebb and flow in its evocative intensity, the eruption of a fire bred guitar surge and the persistently provoking rhythms of Brennik scorch and bruise the senses respectively as the band sculpts another gloriously unpredictable and vigorously compelling exploit.

The persistently rising curve of brilliance to the EP shows no sign of levelling out as it and band step to another level with the closing pair of songs. The first is Bitumen, a track which brings the anthemic unity of the chain-gang into a blues kissed slab of pure invention. As primal and tribal as it is voraciously soulful the track is just brilliant, a sonic and rhythmic alchemy which seduces and smothers every pore of body, mind, and heart. An element of De Staat comes to mind with the agitated glory of the drums and percussion, but again the song is as unique and distinct to Death and the Penguin as you could expect and wish.

As the track closed it has to be admitted that we thought the release’s pinnacle was found but The Words That Maketh Murder soon shoves that thought aside. The song leaps at the ear with a wind of raucous vocals and grooved sonic groans, like a mix of Collisions and Hadouken it consumes the ears with a punkish recruitment which has a greedy attention basking in the subsequent flow of emotive vocals and imaginative intrigue. The switching gallop and canter of the chorus is sensationally incendiary, whilst the increasingly fertile landscape of the track with its swing and groove lilted swagger just concentrates the submissive toxins of the quite genius encounter. With another flood of infection cruising through a climax clad in a kaleidoscope of inventive colour and sonic mystique to end things on a plateau, Accidents Happen is simply incredible and already the instigator to suggestions that the Death and the Penguin is the next big and important thing within British rock music. Time will tell but we will not be betting against it.

Accidents Happen is released on May 5th through Best Before Records.

https://www.facebook.com/datpmusic

9.5/10

RingMaster 04/05/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Idol Dead – Dark Little Heart

The Idol Dead Online Promo shot

If you missed out on the initial release of Dark Little Heart at the tail of 2012 from UK rockers The Idol Dead then stand ready to leap on board with its reboot this week through the band’s own label RAAA! Records. It is a feisty and fiery slab of rowdy and bruising rock ‘n’ roll but one with all the insatiable charm of a lady of the night and the contagious strength of the common cold. The Leeds hailing quintet merges glam and hard rock with a voracious breed of punk resulting in an invigorating and immensely enjoyable rampage of sound and enjoyment. Admittedly its first contact courtesy of the opening song left a promising and pleasing suasion but one which left reservations in regard to its originality and finding a spark to ignite more than simple satisfaction. They were short lived concerns though, the second track bringing a voracious bait before the imagination which set thoughts and emotions on fire. Certainly the album stays away from forging a really distinctive new proposition, thoughts of The Wildhearts and Backyard Babies an undeniable comparison, but Dark Little Heart emerges as one rebellious stomp of rock ‘n’ roll which simply hits the sweet spot.

The Idol Dead began in 2008 and soon made a rapid impression on the local rock scene. Their reputation for explosive live performances went before them as the band played throughout the UK, sharing stages with the likes of Killing Joke, Sebastian Bach, Buckcherry, Evil Scarecrow, Blackfoot, Warrior Soul, Molly Hatchet, Hatebreed, Pitchshifter, Laika Dog, and Spear of Destiny along the way as well as enjoying great responses at numerous festivals. After the well-received Shooting Star EP, the band’s debut album Die on my Feet or Live on my Knees on their own label marked the band out and drew strong responses but it is through the crowd funded Dark Little Hearts that you feel that The Idol Dead will find access to a much wider attention and fevered spotlight. Inevitable line-up shifts along the way have seen the band adapt and grow so that the five piece of vocalist Polly Phluid, guitarists KC Duggan and Tim Jeffs, bassist Dan Sugden, and drummer Nish Gonsalkorale now show themselves to be a potentially explosive proposition within British rock.

As mentioned at the start of the review, opening track Blue Skies provides an appealing encounter but is somewhat underwhelming in its The Idol Dead Cover Artworkpersuasion due to there being little surprise or unpredictability to its otherwise potent presence. Certainly the passion and craft of the band is an open declaration whilst infectiousness is rife from the riffs to the thumping rhythms and from the impressive vocals to the united anthemic band calls beside them. In hindsight it feels like the band is playing safe to start things off, giving ears a well formed and boisterous yet easily accessible entrance into the album. The track is still a thoroughly pleasing offer though but soon left looking pale as the following song lights the fuse to a passionate and imagination stirring experience.

Six Feet Under is just glorious, from its initial flush of raw flame of riffs and inciting rhythms it is an instantaneous trap which has feet, senses, and imagination recruited with its punk ‘n’ roll bred contagion. Holding an essence of Misfits to its sinewed romp and passions corralling enterprise, the track drags out a hungry appetite for it and the album. Again it is fair to say surprises are scarce in many ways, though just the weighty temptation and resourceful triumph of the track alone makes a detonator to the expulsion of expectations whilst leaving thrills and spills rampant. It is a major highlight but one which itself is exceeded by the following Vampire. From an atmospheric intimidating ambience in the dead of night, the song erupts with scorching flames of guitar and moody rhythms matched by the dark throated bass. The vocals of Phluid equally have a sinister edge and leer to their tone which adds greater intrigue to the narrative of the outstanding song. The band finds an even more addictive toxin to the chorus and infection veining the horror punk like predation, sculpting a track even more immense and irresistible than its predecessor.

Both Dion and Hey Girl unveil superbly crafted and shaped bodies of hard rock bred enticement and though neither can match the heights of the previous pair, the songs feed compelling strides of rock ‘n’ roll into a hungry appetite. The first is much like the opener in that is has few moments of wrong footing assumptions but provides enough invention in its unrelenting catchiness to bring a wholesome appetiser to devour before the more substantial feast of its successor twists and rolls with its garage punk/hard rock fusion. The song takes mere seconds to have limbs and voice enlisted in its cause, giving them a vivacious ride of riffs and grooves with barbed rhythmic hooks before making way for the ferocious Bad Fiction. The punk sided heart of the band is an open brawl in the song, rapacious mischief and energy surging through riffs and adrenaline gifted rhythms. Vocally too the band snarls and incites but it and the sounds all come with a wink and a loud whisper of Generation X within the urgency and pent up roar which wants to rock rather than fight.

The pair of I’m Drowning, a captivating stirring ballad featuring the excellent guest vocals of Claire Cameron alongside the again strongly impressive Phluid, and the magnetic Bleed continue to keep imagination and emotions on their feet; both with a longer to convince persuasion but each evolving into easy to recommend highlights upon the album.

The closing stretch of the album is a little undulating but continues to thrill; the blues filtered You Don’t Know a sonic fire which misses finding the trigger which elevates other tracks so masterly and the closing Beautiful Disaster almost ending the album as it started with a less than imposing offering but a skilfully written and presented one which does enough to leave a contented listener. Between them though the band unleashes one final gem in the rabid punk spawned I Don’t Wanna, an unbridled charge of dirty and belligerent rock ‘n’ roll with all the lures and seduction to spring the inner punk in us all. It is a terrific provocation again proving the potential and already open quality of The Idol Dead.

With Dark Little Heart you are not going to find new pastures to explore but for excitingly accomplished and virulent rock ‘n’ roll, there are few around right now to impress more than The Idol Dead.

Dark Little Hearts is available on 5th May through RAAA! Records.

http://theidoldead.com

8/10

RingMaster 04/05/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Marley Blandford – Feel The Rain

Marley Blandford pic

Nineteen and already inspiring a healthy buzz with his sound through his previous unveilings, British singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Marley Blandford now unleashes new single Feel The Rain, and though it is only one song and our first introduction to the Portsmouth hailing musician, it is easy to see why loud whispers are brewing up about his talent. The release is an enchanting warm fusion of indie pop and folk rock with reggae colour, a mix which saunters and smoulders across the senses and imagination like a summer sunset over emotively exotic scenery. It seduces and dances with the emotions and though we often prefer a riot to a love-in, it is hard not to be immersed in the single’s imaginative embrace.

With inspirations from the likes of Cas Haley, Sting, The Police, Ben Howard, and John Mayer spicing his creativity, Blandford first made an impression with his live performances and subsequent the single Midnight To Paris which came out last year. It led to a new wealth of attention and acclaim upon the artist with Roger Pope, the session drummer for Elton John who sadly passed away last year, describing Blandford as “the most talented young songwriter I have ever heard”. A recent appearance of a charming acapella take on Pharell Williams’ Happy drew an eager spotlight upon Blandford which the new single, taken from his debut album Shine On, is sure to build on. Featuring, as the album, brass arrangements from Martyn Ford (Of Led Zeppelin, Elton John, The Beatles) and guest musicians Jamie Talbot, Mike Lovatt, and Richard Edwards who provide captivating blazes of brass, the song is a delight as it caresses the imagination.

The opening guitar coaxing is instantly magnetic, it’s evocative plucking a sure lure swiftly accentuated and inflamed by the sultry tones of Blandford. His voice kisses the air, syllables floating down upon ears with an open radiance as expressive mellowness coats the surrounding words in a seductive yet feistily vivacious character even when his voice smooches with the senses. With those elements alone the song would be a treat but add the glorious flames of brass and the keen stroll of the song which develops across its body the track easily slips into the imagination and emotions. A great design of guitar enterprise and emotive trumpet only add to the rich potency of the song but truthfully it is the voice of Blandford which brings it all together for a highly satisfying temptation.

It is hard not to have a sense of anticipation for the forthcoming album after Feel The Rain. The single may be does not light a major fire in the appetite for its arrival but certainly it has it simmering nicely whilst the ears feast on a thoroughly enjoyable appetiser.

Feel The Rain is available via Silentrooms Records on May 5th.

http://marleyblandford.co.uk/

8/10

RingMaster 05/04/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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SECOND RATE ANGELS reveal their ‘The Lost Days’ EP, on 2nd June‏

Second Rate Angels Online Promo Shot

 

BANGING DEBUT EP SET LOOSE THIS SPRING FROM SECOND RATE ANGELS

 

Unstoppable Brit metal unit ‘Second Rate Angels’ nationally unveil their blistering debut EP ‘The Lost Days’, through all digital stores on Monday 2nd June.

With influences stemming from traditional heavy metal, as well as taking cues from Avenged Sevenfold, Bullet For My Valentine and Trivium, Second Rate Angels produce a sound that is a fresh take on the metal genre. Look out as the energetic quartet hit the road this Spring.

Second Rate Angels burst on to the scene late 2011 and soon began to wow audiences with their high octane live shows. Hailing from Hemel Hempstead and consisting of Chris Lewis (Guitars and Backing Vocals), Matt Clark (Guitars and Backing Vocals), Dave Gobran (Vocals and Bass) and Andy Doran (Drums), the foursome nailed performances at Bloodstock Open Air Festival, and went on to play a string of highly successful shows throughout London and the South, landing supports with the likes of Breed 77, Beholder and Zico Chain along the way. The lively four piece are now primed to step up with the national release of their debut EP ‘The Lost Days’.

Featuring four burly cuts of chunky metal, ‘The Lost Days’ EP will be officially unleashed this June. ‘Give It A Name’ starts it off in fantastic style with its dual riff attack and pounding drumming before the band’s new single ‘Dragged Out’ delivers a serious blow to your senses with its alluring dynamics, stout intensity and soaring refrain. Next up, ‘The Lost Days’ further highlights the fiery four piece’s inventive craftsmanship as it showcases killer guitar work, complete with contagious hooks. And lastly, ‘Black Ice’ draws the EP to a close in stellar fashion with its full frontal beastly riffery. Stay tuned as the band plan to tour throughout the UK this Spring, and check out their Facebook page for updates.

 

-SECOND RATE ANGELS RELEASE ‘THE LOST DAYS’ EP ON MONDAY 2nd JUNE THROUGH ALL STORES-

www.facebook.com/SecondRateAngels

 

 

SURVIVING THE CHARADE announce that ‘We’re Never Coming Home’, from 2nd June‏

Surviving The Charade Online Promo Shot

EURO MELODIC METAL CREW SURVIVING THE CHARADE RELEASE STUNNING DEBUT ALBUM!

 

Swedish riff beasts ‘Surviving The Charade’ set loose their killer debut album ‘We’re Never Coming Home’, out nationwide from Monday 2nd June.

Tugging from a range of sources, from the driving onslaught of Architects, through to the power of Bring Me The Horizon and Asking Alexandria, Surviving The Charade have shaped a sound that pushes and pulls, but is undoubtedly utterly captivating.

Hailing from Stockholm, Sweden and formed in 2008, Surviving The Charade instantly hit the ground running with the national release of their first EP ‘Your Breath Smells Like Ben & Jerry’s’. The record captured the imagination of the underground, and aided by blistering live performances, word soon began to spread about the band. Surviving The Charade upped the ante with their follow up EP ‘We Refuse To Stand In’ and prominent festival appearances further solidified the six-some’s blossoming reputation. Supports with ADEPT, extensive touring throughout their homeland and the release of their single ‘The Supernaturals’ has helped to push the band to new audiences. Last year STC hit England to work with esteemed producer John Mitchell at Outhouse Studios (Architects, Enter Shikari, You Me At Six, etc.) on their debut full length album, ‘We’re Never Coming Home’, and the resulting recordings are breathtaking.

Now armed with their killer album, the Euro slayers are set to blow your head clean off. The record starts in rich form, refusing to hold back as ‘Shout, Walls, Shout!’ soon tears through your ear drums, while offering a steady killer hook. ‘Above The Skyline’ continues to demonstrate the band’s deft ability to fuse biting hardcore with an anthemic refrain. As the record develops, ‘The Diary of Frosty Jack’ comes over you with blistering pace and stout groove before ‘Here We Stand’ dips to showcase the band’s growing maturity and more expansive songwriting. As the album flows, ‘The Night We All Forgot’ closes the record with a potent slab of gritty metalcore that is sure to beat your head into submission.

-SURVIVING THE CHARADE RELEASE ‘WE’RE NEVER COMING HOME’ ON MONDAY 2nd JUNE THROUGH ALL STORES-

DVDAXXX2XX.pdf

www.facebook.com/SurvivingTheCharade

 

CASTOR TROY to sail ‘Across The Water’, on 26th May.

 

Castor Troy Online Promo Shot

ASCENDING NORTHERN ROCK CREW CASTOR TROY RELEASE THEIR DEBUT ALBUM THIS SPRING!

Castor Troy serve up an instantly gratifying explosive fusion of heavy alt-rock complete with delectable hooks and colossal riffs. Already chalking up favourable comparisons to Alterbridge and Alexisonfire, Castor Troy are set for new heights, and are fully armed with their stunning debut album ‘Across The Water’, which drops on Monday 26th May through all stores.

Hailing from Newcastle upon Tyne and born mid 2012, Castor Troy feature four old school friends Benn Gibson (Vocals/Rhythm Guitar), Michael Fulcher (Lead Guitar), Joey Dryden (Bass) and Chris Gilks (Drums) who spew their hearts straight into their music, resulting in a punchy and powerful sound that is stocked with fiery riffage and epic sing-a-long choruses.

Through widespread gigging throughout the North and radio support from BBC and Kerrang! Radio, the rising quartet have acquired a solid following. The band are now set to strike out to the nation in support of their forthcoming album ‘Across The Water’. The astute combo took their time creating the album, ensuring that every facet of their sound was finely tuned. After nearly a year’s worth of work, the band have now fully completed the record, and it hits stores this May.

The album kicks off with the instrumental melodic teasing of ‘Chapter One’, before ‘ Winter Lights’ sparks into life with its ball-busting riffery and killer refrain. The pace continues to build with the impressively crunchy low- swung groove of ‘Undivided’ before the band strips down proceedings with the hauntingly majestic ‘Nineteen’. The four piece up the ante again with the record’s namesake, ‘Across The Water’, and the track certainly makes the grade with its raucous delivery and gigantic chorus. The album then draws to a close with the potent ‘The Condemned’ which swings and sways with gliding ease before beating your senses into submission. Look out for the band as they hit the road this Spring and stay tuned to their Facebook page for updates.

 

== CASTOR TROY RELEASE ‘ACROSS THE WATER’ ON MONDAY 26th MAY THROUGH ALL STORES ==

Castor Troy Cover Artwork

www.facebook.com/castortroyuk