Algebra – Feed the Ego

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It might not be dramatically unique but with a sound blending the voracious fury of a Testament or Exodus with raw causticity vocally and aggressively of Suicidal Tendencies, the new album from Swiss thrashers Algebra is one of the more compelling and exciting releases in the genre this year. To that irresistible rage of thrash hostility though, Feed the Ego and its nine tracks infuse an invention and riveting enterprise which as their band name suggests, is calculated and specifically honed to ignite the imagination. The album is a riveting and increasingly thrilling onslaught and its creators an emerging exciting force in the genre.

Formed in 2008, the Lausanne quartet set out uniting inspirations from eighties thrash metal and bands such Slayer and Sepultura with those of more technical and melodic thrash/death persuasion like Forbidden, Gojira, and Pantera, twisting it in with their own ideation and hostile yet ruggedly seductive sound. An early demo in 2008 brought the band strong local attention reinforced by the Procreation EP a year later. Their self-released debut album Polymorph awoke a far greater attention and recognition of the band in 2012, it subsequently earning a re-release with Stormspell Records. Now after signing with Unspeakable Axe Records earlier this year for their new unleashing, Algebra is ready and poised to push nearer to the frontline of thrash metal with Feed the Ego. It is easy to suspect that the album will bring hordes more to their feet in acclaim, fans and media alike and if not now sow the seeds to a deserved breakthrough in world metal.

The Andy Classen mixed and mastered release opens up with the steadily intimidating Survival Nowadays, its ear crowding wall of riffs and rhythms a menacing bait to which spicy grooves bring added portentous temptation. The algebra coversong starts like an imagination stalking warning, an insight to darker, heavier, and more open hostility which soon expels its weight across the expanding song. There is an essence of Biohazard to the now forcible stride and attack of the provocation but an incitement spiked with impressive endeavour and sonic enterprise from guitarist/vocalist Chaos Edy. The intensive riffing of rhythms guitarist Phil Void aligned to the thumping beats of Tony Sharp and the predacious lines of bassist Mat Showman, create a just as appealing challenge and though the song does not quite set a fire in the belly it warms up senses and passions nicely for the glories to come.

The intensive tempest of Prisoner Outdoors ignites ears and thoughts further, its determined insatiable stroll a platform for the scathing tones of Edy, his every syllable an accusing roar over his and Void’s captivating sonic sculpting. The track never relinquishes its rugged assertiveness but colours it with some alluring melodies and addictive hooks before the twisted enticing of Necessary Evil takes over. Riffs and rhythms again make a virulent and vicious contagion, the swings of Sharp senses dulling as Edy backed by the band casts a vocal web which is just provocative and unpredictable. With blistering grooves and a gripping solo, the track offers numerous enthralling flavours to its rampant charge keeping the album in firm control of body and emotions.

My Shelf is a slower more heavy metal seeded encounter, opening with a rich acidic twine of guitar invention. There is a bluesy lilt to its expressive smouldering of sound and a presence which intrigues and surprises with its emotive melodies and progressively hued emprise. Vocally, though Edy makes a potent offering it is an area which does not fully convince at times though it is more a personal preference than flaw. The song grows and persuades to potent effect over time though always pales against the might of Profound Guilt. Drama soaks it from first note to last, guitars creating an opening caress of haunted temptation before the track explodes into recognisable thrash ferocity. The core of most songs hold little to surprise but it is the layers of guitar invention and melodic mystery which turn strong propositions like here into irresistible fascinations.

Its success is followed by the title track, its threatening body emerging from transfixing scenery of rolling rhythms and winding sonic enticement aligning for a climactic atmosphere and conspiracy. The track is a mouth-watering exploration embracing its eventual thrash cored dance with a binding of guitar ingenuity and rhythmic tenacity yet never releasing that initial imposing charisma and danger soaked charm. One of the major highlights of the album it is an invigorating incitement which, as we said at the start, although the album is not openly unique it like most tracks provides something new and strikingly inventive.

With only the fade out a slight niggle, the stunning track is succeeded and emulated in glory by Ego System, its entrance and body similarly commanding and addictively imaginative before unleashing its raw thrash gnawing on the senses which in turn is bound in the inescapable lures of toxic grooves and sonic trespassing. Its triumph is followed by the again similar structure and presence of The Fort Broke. If there is one criticism to the album it is the familiarity between the thrash built spines of songs, this track’s lures a very close relation to its predecessor’s at times though that is tempered and often lost in the mesmeric creativity of the individual members which again only sparks a hungrier appetite for band and album. The last song Monotask simply reinforces all the power and potency of the album with its own individual and punk infused thrash provocation, again leaving emotions full and appetite wanting more.

A thoroughly enjoyable rampage, Feed the Ego is a rollercoaster of aggression and voraciousness for those with a head for hostile heights and the adventure for tight curves of imagination.

Feed The Ego is available via Unspeakable Axe Records on 16th September @ http://unspeakableaxerecords.bandcamp.com/album/feed-the-ego

https://www.facebook.com/Algebrathrash

9/10

RingMaster 05/09/2014

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Miseo – Lunatic Confessions

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A brawling roar and intensive tapestry of the essential essences of nineties old school and modern death metal, Lunatic Confessions the debut album from German metallers Miseo, is an uncompromising fury which what it lacks in originality it makes up for with ravenous enterprise and imaginative hostility. It is a release which does not startle but easily wakens a greedy hunger to come back for more again and again.

Hailing out of Marburg, the band is made up of vocalist/guitarist Fernando Thielmann (MTGM, Carnal Ghoul), bassist André Rink, and drummer Timo Claas (Lay Down Rotten). Formed at the beginning of last year, the trio caught the imagination if arguably not the success it warranted with The Dead Will Predominate EP a few months later. Now they unleash Lunatic Confessions to evolve the promise of their first offering with a ferocious and captivating tempest of sound and intent. It is death metal without any pretensions but also a proposition unafraid to be adventurous and inventively expressive within the existing scenery of the genre.

The Blacksmith Records released incitement opens with the brief and expressive intro Trapped In Veil before exploding with the exhausting and thrilling storm of Daddy’s Girl. The track rages sonically and vocally from the start Lunatic_Confessions_CD_finalwhilst riffs rub incessantly across the senses as heavy duty rhythms tenderise the same surface. It is a striking eruption of sound and intent which creatively mixes up its assault in gait and intensity, grooves and sonic intrigue as prevalent as an inescapable hostility.

Greed Kills equally takes little time to encase ears in a rigorous examination of riffs, bone splintering rhythms, and vocal animosity. The track almost has a swagger to its maliciousness and dark hearted grooving, enslaving imagination and emotions as swiftly as its predecessor. It is a cantankerous treat of an aural bullying which is then shadowed by the outstanding title track. Unrelenting repetitive grooves bind ears first before its slower roam over the senses casts imposing shadows and appetite igniting temptation. Equally impressing with its sinew sculpted malevolence which drives drums and bass especially, the song is an early best track contender. Its lingering qualities followed and matched by the inhospitable predation of Skin Dress. The track stalks the listener, twisting with spiteful grooves and uncompromising rhythmic incitement whilst vocally Thielmann and band find their most caustic malice yet. It is a bordering on hypnotic consumption of ears and another pinnacle in the increasingly impressing release.

Both Überzucht und Untergang and Harlots For God keep things tempestuous and highly satisfying, even if neither grips quite as tightly as the previous pair of songs. The first harangues ears with an insatiable fierce blaze of riffs entwined with scorching grooves caged by a rhythmic provocation which alone numbs the senses. Its successor prowls with bestial intent whilst flirting with the imagination through veins of acidic melodies and sonic seduction. Both songs spark with extreme enterprise which only incites further hunger for the release which Everybody’s Victim feeds with its erosive savagery and venomous narrative.

It is impossible not to have addictive tendencies towards Lunatic Confessions by this point, every track presenting slightly familiar but invigorating and refreshing twists to their death metal offering, as evidenced by the barbarous No Guts No Glory and its blend of fiercely nagging riffery and creative seducing seeded from melodic toxins. It is an irresistible baiting not quite matched by Five Star Doc yet the song with its haunting opening and fiendish stroll still provides a richly satisfying proposition before final track Ingrate Deadbeat uncages its own threatening maelstrom of extreme vehement and hellacious intent.

Lunatic Confessions is a blistering and thrilling encounter which offers everything good and addictive about death metal. It may not be setting new boundaries but it leaves only the thickest pleasure which is more than enough to wholeheartedly recommend Miseo’s impressive release.

Lunatic Confessions is available now via Blacksmith Records @ http://www.miseo.de/shop/

https://www.facebook.com/OfficialMiseo

8.5/10

RingMaster 05/09/2014

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Where Giants Once Stood – Live Above EP

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The word in the ear before making our introduction with Canadian metallers Where Giants Once Stood through their new Live Above EP was that this is a band striding the lip of major things. Having been buffeted and captivated by their new four track proposition it is easy to see why the keen buzz around the Toronto quartet. The release brawls and seduces with equal success and potency, its tracks each an unpredictable and exhaustive adventure which lingers to inspire swift and regular returns to their persuasion. The band merges a wealth of styles and flavours into their imagination igniting metal and though some tracks excel with the passions stronger than others, there is no escaping the constant magnetism and voracious enterprise of the band.

Drawing ever increasing attention and acclaim through their live shows, which has seen them share stages with bands such as Born of Osiris, Veil of Maya, Chelsea Grin, Iwrestledabearonce, and Beartooth, Where Giants Once Stood made a powerful mark with The Changing EP. It set the band out as having the potential to ignite major fires within metal and Live Above does nothing to deter that suggestion, instead pushing the band’s sound and presence to even richer heights. Produced by Jon Howard from Threat Signal, the EP roars with passion and invention from its first breath, driven by metal which is as transfixing as it is aggressively bruising.

New single Living in Security opens up the fury, its heart soon raging from within the initial sonic coaxing which starts the track off. Riffs swiftly create an imposing wall of vicious stabs aligned to the hostile beats of drummer Austin EP COVER - Where Giants Once Stood - Live Above 2014Hamilton, before exploding into a magnetic stride with a swing to the grooves and rhythms and raw passion to the vocals of Reshaun Page. It is a blistering persuasion which continues to twist and evolve with every passing stretch of chords and sonic endeavour, and increase in temptation as the impressive angst soaked squalls of Page pass over parts of the song to the outstanding clean vocal tones of guitarist Jordan Turnbull backed as potently by those of rhythm guitarist Scott Major. Entwining melodic and progressive bred metal with metalcore ferocity and antagonism, the song is as resourcefully contagious as it is dramatically sculpted, Turnball igniting its air and canvas with some delicious and exceptional creative string skills.

Every second of the track is an imaginative and startling emprise, never allowing thoughts and expectations to settle. It is as much an impressive part of the song as the sounds themselves; that ingenuity continued with Illuminate and subsequently the rest of the release. The second track makes a less hostile entrance, mellow croons casting the first tempting before Page rages impressively from within the swirling warm maelstrom of sound. Expanding with tempestuous animosity and seduction combined, the song squalls and seduces with its emotive and physical turbulence whilst engrossing ears and thoughts with the tenacious skills of each member. Maybe without the final spark which makes its predecessor so incendiary, the track still sparks another vein of hunger in appetite and emotions before drifting off for The Damaged to begin releasing its sonic lures and voracious narrative. A virulent infectiousness roams the chorus whilst a spiteful but riveting toxicity soaks every scarring riff and syllable of the vocal malevolence. As by now expected, the song moves through more revolutions and curves of sound and ideation than a swing door, again thoughts bewitched by the entwining strands of widely varied metal weaved into the masterful and irrepressible incitement.

The release ends with the exceptional Myths Lies And Crimes, a track which is mouth-watering in its tapestry of sound and invention. At its core, the track is like a meeting of August Burns Red and Trivium under the influential potency of My Chemical Romance at their early best. It is as fascinating as it is dominating, a sensational encounter which like the EP as a whole, leaves ears ringing, thoughts full, and emotions greedy for more.

Whether the Live Above EP is your introduction to Where Giants Once Stood or the next instalment on the journey already embraced, it thrusts the band to a new dramatic and impressive status within metal. Canada’s creative sons could and should be devoured by the wide metal world thanks to the EP and if it is not now, certainly it is easy to expect it at some point in the near future.

The self-released Live Above EP is available now @ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/live-above-ep/id907144882

https://www.facebook.com/wheregiantsoncestood

9/10

RingMaster 04/09/2014

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The Slang – Self Titled

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Creating a resourceful embrace of alternative rock with a healthy whiff of power pop to its smile, US rock band The Slang show themselves to be one flavoursome and captivating proposition with their self-titled debut EP. Bringing together five songs which bounce with infectious energy whilst casting a gentle expressive caress of warm melodies, the release is a thoroughly satisfying encounter which does not startle but certainly sparks a lingering appetite for its qualities.

Hailing out of Columbus, Ohio, The Slang has already drawn strong attention with their vibrant sound which takes inspirations from artists such as Johnny Cash, Tom Petty, Pete Yorn, Bill Frisell, Rage Against the Machine, and Muse, whilst their songs have found themselves placed in various shows and movies from the likes of HBO, USA Network, and Troma Films. The EP is their next big step into the world and it is easy to expect the release pushing the band into an even hungrier spotlight.

From the opening plucking of guitar strings from John Bobo, first song Far From Over nudges attention awake, swiftly securing its full attention with magnetic keys and inviting melodies. It is a potent start enhanced by the firm beats ofSlang_EP_Album_Cover Michael Dillon and the appealing darker tone of bass from John Newsome. The song relaxes into a masterful stride as the vocals of Bobo bring another impressive texture to the song within the interwoven colour of his keys and guitar enterprise. The track is an enchanting temptation but one with a feisty edge and attitude to its gait and passion which only increases its gripping presence. There is also a sultry twang to certainly the keys and some of the engaging melodies which kiss the imagination, a lure offered again in the next up Rule The World. The second song opens almost identically to the first, plucked strings making the initial enticing. Bobo’s vocals make a swifter entrance though, taking the ears into a more unruly eruption of sound and energy. Its opening bait though never relinquishes its coaxing, persistently underlying the blossoming melodic hues and emerging emotive beauty of the song. Maybe a slightly slower persuasion than its predecessor, the track grows into another big highlight within the highly pleasing release.

One Step At A Time comes next bringing a tender balladry of whispering suggestiveness from the keys and crystalline melodies from the guitars. As shown in the previous tracks, there is always a vein of sinew sculpted tenacity around and here provides a fiery intensity and passion to the smouldering for another increasingly persuasive proposition, its every minute and listen taking it to stronger heights and success.

Its successor Feels Like Work is another which takes a little time to wholly persuade, though from its first outing the song treats ears and thoughts to a highly agreeable exercise in accomplished songwriting and greed inspiring hooks. Newsome and Dillon craft an inventive cage to frame the song, at times jabbing eagerly and in others making a firm but less demanding suasion, whilst the keys and guitar of Bobo spin a web of melodic reflection and evocative adventure matched by his increasingly impressive vocals.

The EP is brought to a close by Find A Way, a respectful hug of sound prone to burst into a feistier swagger and expulsion of emotion. It is a fine end to the release, if lacking the spark of its predecessors, which reinforces the appetite raising introduction to The Slang. The EP as said earlier does not blow ears and emotions away but easily awakens a keen interest and want to know and hear more from a band with the potential to forge a successful future.

The self-released The Slang EP is available now @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-slang-ep/id899245548?ign-mpt=uo%3D4

http://www.theslang.com

8/10

RingMaster 05/09/2014

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