Amplifier – Mystoria


      Roll up! Roll up! Come and hear amazing kaleidoscopic soundscapes and exotically intimate adventures. Come explore the fascinating realm of Mystoria.

   Maybe that is a little carnival like in its call, but that is just how the new album from UK rock band Amplifier captures and excites senses and imagination. There is drama to songs and the band’s creative presence which is pure theatre yet it does not defuse or shadow the sublimely crafted and textured slices of songwriting and their imagination driven emprise. The album is glorious, a series of inventive and emotional explorations which provide a carnival of fun and evocative delights; quite simply it is one of the year’s biggest treats.

Formed in 1999, the Manchester band has been no slouches in providing attention grabbing and passion rousing releases, the success of their 2011 epic exploration The Octopus and the more intimate and purer rock hearted Echo Street from last year, the pinnacles to date of the band’s relentlessly evolving and tenacious invention and sound. The last album also marked the appearance of the band’s current line-up of vocalist Sel Balamir and drummer Matt Brobin alongside the newer members of former Oceansize guitarist Steve Durose and bassist Alex Redhead. The quartet return with a release which in many ways combines those previous albums whilst casting its own unique character and twist in the band’s creativity. It is grand in its theatre and expansive imagination yet provides a stripped down blend of progressive rock and metal with psychedelic space rock in comparison to earlier releases and undoubtedly The Octopus. Their first release with Superball Music, Amplifier has cast an impressive pebble into the pool of rock ‘n’ roll with Mystoria, one sure to send ripples shimmering through the passions of genre and fans for a long time.

From the opening electrified sizzle of first track Magic Carpet, thoughts and anticipation are aroused through its striking stroking of the senses. Keen emotions swiftly follow as jabbing beats and a great throaty bass lure adds to the Press_Cover_01coaxing whilst guitars weave extra sonic design and temptation to the track’s canvas. It is soon in full striding glory and as quickly has seduced the imagination and captured the passions with its emerging rampant enterprise and fluid shifts in sound and presence. There is a familiarity to the piece too, though for no open reason, but it just adds another twist to the unique and gripping entrance to the album, a mighty start soon reinforced by Black Rainbow. The second track ripples with sinew driven riffs and just as pungent rhythms which combine for a potent stomp of rock ‘n’ roll. Balamir’s vocals equally seduce attention and pleasure, his voice mellow yet accompanied by a slight snarl which varies his delivery superbly to match the brewing tempest of sound around him. Equally varied is the gait of the song, sultry slower passages as impacting and imagination sparking as the rampant charge around them.

Things only grow and increase in potency and magnetism as Named After Rocky and the brilliant Cat’s Cradle step up next. The first of the pair has a seventies glaze to the vocals and aligning melodies, a folkish rock breath tempering and working superbly with its otherwise muscular stroll. Instantly and relentlessly infectious and riveting in its melodic escapade, the song bewitches but soon is in the shade of its masterful successor. Cat’s Cradle is simple sensational, its initial simple repetitive riff an irresistible lure alone which then leads into a seductive tapestry of smiling melodies matched by the outstanding vocals. There is a swagger to the song which only ignites body and emotions as it dances provocatively and creatively around ears. A feel of KingBathmat also flavours the song, which is not the last time that thought arises across Mystoria, both bands having a strain of creative revelry and ingenuity which is uniquely British. The best track on the album it is a masterstroke of contagious enterprise.

Bride is another piece of musical alchemy, its more subdued, but no less creatively energetic and addictive presence providing a tapestry of melodic and vocal caresses entwined with feisty sonic flames. The track serenades ears and thoughts whilst sparking body and emotions to partake in its festivity. The relatively gentle canter of the song is embraced by Open Up., though there is a slightly more serious breath to the presence of the song, a more shadowed element to its celestial air and space rock intrigue which again makes for a transfixing provocateur.

The compelling OMG comes next, its riveting drama in sound flirting with the imagination relentlessly. It is a delicious weave of noir kissed adventure which binds the listener in its sinister but irresistible climate as another pinnacle emerges within the lofty heights of Mystoria. As with all songs though, it is hard to fully portray the creative depths within the lean bodies they are encased in, each exploring with a bordering on mischievous inventiveness and passion.

The album is completed by firstly the intimately and elegant beauty of Crystal Mountain, a song painting an enthralling expansive scenery with minimal fuss and weight, and finally the muscular but no less bracing and captivating Crystal Anthem. Both tracks bring a stunning release to a powerful and invigorating close with class and imagination, Mystoria as a whole easily one of the year’s richest adventures.

Mystoria is available now via Superball Music digitally, and as vinyl, Cd, and CD Media Book versions, the last including two extra tracks.


RingMaster 08/09/2014

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Pord – Wild


Employing a cauldron of hostile noise rock soaked in sonic causticity, Wild is a proposition which simply lights up ears and passions as it numbs and abuses the senses. The new album from French band Pord, the release is an exhilarating and at times gorgeous violation of sonic ingenuity which inspires a deep hunger for more. Their sound is not going to be for everyone but if the likes of Keelhaul, Melt Banana, or Craw tick all the right boxes then Wild is a must investigation.

Formed in 2001, Pord hail from Lozère and through line-up changes evolved with a raw and imposing sound which was not the initial intention of the band on its emergence according to the new album’s press release. Thankfully the band has taken, whether organically or intentionally, a corrosive and raucous route with their sound which has increasingly garnered potent attention and following. Their well-received debut album Valparaiso three years ago drew acclaim towards the trio yet it is easy to feel that Wild will brew a much more vocal and aggressive attention once its uncompromising claws dig in.

Recorded with Serge Morattel (Knut, Tantrum, Ventura, Basement) at Rec Studio in Geneva and released via Solar Flare Records, the album instantly lights up ears and thoughts with Staring Into Space. The first thing igniting the pord_wildpassions is the bass, its presence from the first second offering more primal testosterone than a pair of rutting stags and never losing its carnivorous snarl and beauty across the whole release. Its bestial predation and animal magnetism is soon joined by scythes of guitar, their sonic swipes no less attractive and spiteful on the senses. Drums as swiftly add their antagonistic punches whilst vocal squalls roar with an element of restraint within the storming mix. It is a riveting mix, the repetitive bass lures irresistible whilst the guitar casts scorched tendrils of enterprise which almost crawl in the songs slower sludgier moments and charge with a melodic tailwind when the song opens up a cauldron of energy.

The song is a tremendous start, hooks and grooves lethally delicious, and swiftly matched by I’m Swimming Home. The second song is like a mix of KEN Mode and the now demised Kabul Golf Club, its caustic melodies and abrasing textures simultaneously threatening and seductive, not forgetting ridiculously addictive. Vocals are submerged in the tempest of sound but still a potent protagonist in the contagion of noise and bullying enterprise. As with most of the tracks, there is a swagger and array of barbed creative hooks which are virulent in their persuasion to slightly temper and often accentuate the hostile tenacity. It is formidable romance of noise which is contrasted impressively by My Bloody Galantine. Whereas the previous song has an endearing side, the third track is a predator of the psyche, crawling over the senses with a sinister gait and intimidating ferocity honed into a primal stalking loaded with sludge thick intensity. It is a carnal beast of a track and no less compelling than it’s, shall we say ‘lighter’ companions on the album.

The short fury of Laguiole Bull’s Balls is outstanding. It just exceeds a minute and digs up old school hostility to its sonic furnace and an ever debilitating bass enticing which recalls early Killing Joke in many ways. The devastating statement is followed by the scarring qualities of What Are Tuesdays For? which from a menacing and ear splitting entrance, unleashes a rhythmic agitation and sonic maelstrom which blisters every surface it touches whilst sparking another epidemic of seductive infectiousness. The track has a real swing to its bones as it launches its own insatiable and senses scorching web of sound and ultimately leaving ears blissfully ringing by the time of its departure.

Pools’n’Chicks is another sparking thoughts of earlier eras. Its raging intent and creative wall of sonic temptation proceeds to evolve through a post punk like cold snap and predation before developing a rhythmic addictiveness and discord driven expanse of noise aligned to a raw aggravation. It is an incitement which reminds of The Fire Engines and The Fall as it uncages its mouth-watering tide of sound, living up to the album title whilst sculpting its own addiction forging glory.

The album ends with On The Couch, a final and individual furnace of sonic oppression and rhythmic ferocity which inescapably thrills as it bludgeons ears, body and. soul. It is a last exhausting vindictive suasion, an eleven minute plus violent, corrosive dance within a haunting and menacing atmosphere, and quite brilliant.

As mentioned Wild may not be for all but with a body and soul which lives up to its name, it is one of the physically unhealthy and emotionally invigorating triumphs of2014.

Wild is available via Solar Flare Records now @


RingMaster 08/09/2014

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Beggarz Fixx – Rouse The Rabble

Beggarz Fixx Online Colour Promo shot

Brewing up an accomplished and fiery proposition with a dirtily rowdy nature, UK rockers Beggarz Fixx unleashes their debut EP this week for a healthy stomp of rock ‘n’ roll which should find a welcome in the ears of glam metal/hard rock fans. Rouse The Rabble is a feisty encounter which romps with the recognisable inspirations of Mötley Crüe, Buckcherry, and Aerosmith ringing through its six riots of energy and sound. It is not offering anything ground-breaking or re-inventing the genre wheel but instead pulls the listener, even those without a real taste for its style of music, into a pleasing and contagious exploit which only satisfies.

Swaggering out of Brighton, Beggarz Fixx has built up strong support and reputation locally and across the south of England since emerging in 2011. A few line-up changes has led to the quintet of vocalist Chazza B. Bennett, guitarists Mykki Felyxx and Danni Oakheart, bassist Zakky Redloxx, and drummer Billy Kidd coming together whilst the years since forming has seen the band share stages with the likes of Love/Hate, Attica Rage, Adam Bomb, Reckless Love, and Mallory Knox. Rouse The Rabble is the band’s first release and nationwide attention grabber and it is hard not to expect it to emulate across the rest of the UK its success in London and below.

….And The Devil You Know sets the release in motion, its slow rhythmic coaxing and simmering flames of guitar an attention prodding entrance. The track continues in that nature, accentuating its sonic heat throughout with the 10616344_669858903083407_6433403193299458609_npredominantly spoken vocals which offer a raw edge to the climactic texture of the song. It is a potent if not startling start which flows straight into Outta Control, a track instantly raising the temperate and energy levels. Beats are punchy and riffs raw, whilst the vocals of Bennett provide a nicely varied flavour to their presence. There are no real surprises with the song but plenty of fresh ideas and a highly agreeable persuasion of sound and craft.

The strong start is matched by the following Gimme Some. Drizzled with a bluesy temperament in the flair and stringed enticement of Felyxx and Oakheart, the track is an immediate party with infectious bait for feet, imagination, and passions alike. Hooks flirt, and rhythms entice with similar success whilst again the guitars cast a weave of melodic and sonic tenacity to match the vocal enterprise. Old school and proud, yet providing a modern fire to its attitude, the track again holds little to shock or surprise but plenty to rouse body and emotions for a thoroughly pleasing encounter.

Burn It Down is an anthem primed to recruit the listener within its first touch, hooks and chords an easy and stormy mix which breeds familiar seeds into its own antagonistic riot. With some potent twists and ideation, the song is another to awaken the spirit, and limbs, but lacks the stamp and spark of other tracks, and especially its predecessor. The next up Sick N’ Tired has a stronger and far more lingering presence and adventure to its tempest. Aerosmith meets Skid Row with a touch of Turbonegro to its aggressive breath; the song shows another side to the invention of the band, its progressively spawned melodies and intriguing turn of imagination bringing richer promise and endeavour to the track and release.

The EP is brought to a close by the impressive Walking, a smouldering croon which expels a blues twang in its climate and emotive heat to its reflective narrative. Guitars and vocals fuel the imagination whilst both Redloxx and Kidd provide an imposing yet respectful frame which cages ears impressively. Along with Gimme Some, the track brings the biggest thrill to an easily enjoyable and potent release.

Rouse The Rabble is a sonic orgy of fire bred rock ‘n’ roll which has the swagger and qualities to leave a host of new fans very happy.

The Rouse The Rabble EP is available now through all stores.


RingMaster 08/09/2014

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Paddy Clegg – Dancing Shoes

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A song which can be best described as a melodic smile, Dancing Shoes the new single from UK singer songwriter Paddy Clegg reinforces why there has been a healthy buzz brewing up around the17 year old. Simple yet skilfully crafted, the single is a refreshing flirtation for feet, ears, and emotions with little more in its intent than to have and give fun.

From Huyton in Liverpool, Clegg at his tender age had already earned good experience from drumming in previous bands but deciding to take up another instrument in the guitar, he began writing and composing his own songs, recording them in his bedroom before stepping out in the Liverpool live scene and surrounding areas. Earlier this year he unveiled his debut single Back To The Start which was met with praise and focus, with his music drawing comparisons to the likes of The La’s, Newton Faulkner, Jake Bugg, and Mumford & Sons. Dancing Shoes now has its moment to push the reputation and presence of the young artist further and it is hard to expect anything other than another wave of potent attention for it.

Dancing Shoes does not make an overly striking or dramatic start, a gentle strum of guitar making a melodic caress which is soon joined by the potent tones of Clegg and punchy beats. It is a track though which seems to grow before and in ears, a dark bass line and a slightly more energetic intent to the drums helping broaden its weight and lure so that before you know it the song has seduced and recruited eager assistance from feet and vocal chords. A great blaze of brass adds to the increasing colour of the song whilst the vocals of Clegg similarly increase in potency and engaging hues. It is a smart and infectious slice of songwriting and musical invention with only the fact that at only two and a half minutes long, just as you are stretching muscles and limbs for an excited sortie on the dance floor, it stops.

Keep them wanting more is a wise old piece of advice and Clegg certainly does that with Dancing Shoes. It is another hint at the potential of Paddy Clegg and his music, an emerging proposition which so far has make a very show go of an obvious talent.

Dancing Shoes is available now via Twin City Records @


RingMaster 08/09/2104

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