Raw blood and ceremonies: talking Antropomorphia with Ferry Damen.

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The presence of Dutch death metallers AntropomorphiA comes in two parts, a successful period between 1990 and 1999 and second starting in 2009 when the band came back to life after a decade hiatus. Its return has led to acclaim and feverish appetites for the band’s uncompromising and imposingly bracing inventive sound. Just recently AntropomorphiA unleashed new album Rites ov Perversion, a wickedly accomplished and compelling slab of extreme savagery putting a potent spark back into death metal. Eager to learn more about the band, we had the pleasure to grab time with vocalist/guitarist Ferry Damen, exploring the birth and first era of the band, the new album, and connections between certain songs and their author…

Hi Ferry and thanks for sharing time to talk with us.

It is fair to say that the recent release of your new album Rites ov Perversion has drawn even more attention and awareness of AntropomorphiA than ever before; certainly it has been the release opening us up to your dark violently imposing world. How has reactions been for the release and have you felt an increased spotlight from it?

The overall reactions are very positive, from both media and fans. We certainly notice there is a lot more attention drawn towards the band since the release, which is again a positive thing for us!

It is the successor to the well-received Evangelivm Nekromantia of 2012, how and where do you see an evolution in sound between the two?

I think it’s becoming more comfortable within your own sound and songwriting. With Evangelivm Nekromantia we wanted to present an album that after such a long break was a good representation of where we stood musically and could define us. Evangelivm Nekromantia became more groove-based and atmospheric than all our previous work but still harboured those characteristics that defined us. That sound became the spine on which I wanted to grow this new entity. I wanted to refine that sound and draw from a big diverse palette while staying true to some old Death Metal traditions without becoming a copy of the genre. I think what the main difference in sound is the progression, which is an inevitable thing as an artist and I think

Before we look at the new album more closely can we briefly ask about the beginnings of AntropomorphiA way back in the mists of time, well 1990 to be specific. Was there a particular intent and inspiration to the band back then?

We started of inspired by the early Black Metal bands such as Hellhammer/Celtic Frost, Bathory, but when I heard Scream Bloody Gore and Seven Churches the intent became to play raw and uncompromising Death Metal. We were inspired by all the upcoming DM bands that surrounded us, from Entomed, Grave, Asphyx, Death to Bolt Thrower, but not in the sense that we wanted to sound like them.

Has that force behind the band’s creation continued or evolved over time?

I would say it has evolved. When we started out our musical skills weren’t at the level they are now so our early work is more primitive. We evolved as artist and the hunger within this band has grown together with this progression.

Looking back, a relatively successful period for the band led to a decade hiatus, was there a prime reason for the dormancy of the band? antropomorphia_photo02

We were at a point where Death Metal had become a repetition and was bleeding out, we weren’t able to book any shows. We parted ways with our original guitar player, who was a very good friend, so that left its mark and our other musical projects got more interest from the outside world. Time became also an issue due to those projects. So we decided to put the band on hiatus.

…And the spark bringing AntropomorphiA back to life in 2009?

When we put the band on hiatus I never stopped writing for the band. So from time to time I would sit and record some of these songs together with Marco (Drums) at his studio. Months would pass and then Marc (Bass) would record his parts, Marco would mix the tracks and we would put some of them online on our MySpace page back then. Every time we’d record or made music together, we’d sometimes rent a rehearsal studio just to play some AntropomorphiA tunes; that spark started a small fire and when time became less of an issue we decided to really feed those flames.

Did you look at the band and the music brewing up inside her differently this second time around or was it simply picking up where the band left off?

The music we wrote within those years of our hiatus showed some progression in our style but when we started writing it was difficult to get back in our skin so to speak. We’ve recorded a whole album worth of material, which had elements of what was brewing inside AntropomorhpiA but it was until after those recordings that the fire started to really blaze.

What specifically consumed the band member’s experiences and careers in that intervening period?

Marco (Drums) and Marc (Bass) where part of a band called Flesh Made Sin and I got involved managing a major act here in the Netherlands.

Back to Rites ov Perversion, would you agree is probably your most vicious yet adventurous album yet?

Antropomorphia-RitesOvPerversionFor sure, I think with every listen you’ll hear it offers a more dangerous sonic ride. A sinister, brutal, violent and emotional ride, layered in a more multidimensional sound.

We also sensed looking back at previous releases that there is an element in its sound that is seeded back in the early music of the band. Is that something you hear and was this deliberate or simply an organic emergence?

These things emerge on a natural way; I think it comes from my style and approach of writing and playing this type of music.

Evangelivm Nekromantia found itself under scrutiny and dislike of the German authorities, leading to its banning I believe. Are you expecting similar attention and reactions with Antropomorphia in certain quarters?

I didn’t get completely banned, it’s an 18 or older type of thing if you want to buy the album. I think they will certainly have a closer look at this album since we became part of their list but we didn’t really think about it or take it into account writing this album. I’ll guess we’ll see how they react to certain things to come (our video for Nekrovaginal Secretions might rub them the wrong way) but until now we haven’t heard from them.

The last album had a continuing theme to its songs, but Rites ov Perversion feels like the songs, apart from a few are more individual and standalone in their narrative. What are some of the concepts and explorations running through the release?

The album is filled with the same thematic occult/gore, mostly consisting of a sinister, diabolic, misanthropic and sexual nature. Crowned in Smoldering Ash is an exception as this song addresses the depressions that have plagued me throughout my life. Inanimatus Absqui Anima is written by a good friend of ours Twan van Geel (Legion of the Damned, Soulburn) which is about the Greek mythological goddess Kore (Persephone) who gets raped by Hades. As a reference to our world where everything will end up getting raped in some sort of form, dies and will end up empty and rotten.

How long was the album in the making and how did the writing process work for its songs and in general with the band?

I started writing on and off from the second half of 2013. It’s a very intense and complicated process at times, so I’ll give you the short version; I write all the music and Marco is responsible for the arrangements. There are times also we co-write/arrange songs.

Jos van den Brand is a new addition to the band between albums, how did that change the dynamics and process of writing and recording Rites ov Perversion to say the previous album?

It didn’t, our writing process has been the same for several years.

Your songs appear to take inspiration from classical and literature bred themes as well as more modern issues. There also seems an intimacy to some of the lyrics, is there a stronger personal element to tracks than maybe initially perceived by us outsiders?

This is the first time I get this question, which means someone is paying attention ha-ha. I’d say it’s certainly the case on Rites ov Perversion, I mentioned the song Crowned in Smoldering Ash, this is the most personal song I’ve ever written but there are more tracks even on the previous album that hold something personal. Although Crowned… is the most outspoken, even though I think if I didn’t mention this, it would not be perceived as that.

Rites ov Perversion also includes a cover of Death’s Open Casket, why that particular song from their arsenal of songs?antropomorphia_photo01

Although we are an admirer of the whole Leprosy album, Open Casket is that one song that jumps out for each of us. When we started playing it in the rehearsal room it immediately felt like a perfect fit, since Death was one of the most important DM bands for us we said why not put it on the album.

You mentioned it earlier, the video for Nekrovaginal Secretions from the album; can you give us some hint and background to that?

Well the video is based on the lyrics of the song. We’ve had our second and last day of shooting last weekend and it will be an ode to lesbian necrophilia, and perverted masochistic sexual behaviour. We’re still in the editing process so I can’t say more about it than this.

What will the rest of 2014 going into the New Year have in store for and from AntropomorphiA?

Our bookings agency is focusing on club and festival shows. So we will be able to cast our Rites ov Perversion all over Europe.

Once again a big thanks to talking with us, any final thoughts you would like to share?

Thank you for the time! Check out the album.

‘Behold the Sway ov Death’

F

 

Ring our review of Rites ov Perversion @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/09/17/antropomorphia-rites-ov-perversion/

Rites ov Perversion is available now via Metal Blade Records @ http://www.emp.de/antropomorphia-rites-ov-perversion-cd/art_288907/

http://antropomorphia-official.com/

Pete Ringmaster

The Ringmaster Review 10/10/2014

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In Love Your Mother – The Great Ape Project

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As well as holding gripping and inventive sounds, a song and release should be an adventure for ears and imagination to make the strongest connection, and they do not come more of a creative and challenging emprise than The Great Ape Project from Swizz trio In Love Your Mother. The album is a riveting and invigorating maelstrom of sound and deranged invention which leaves no stone unturned or bedlamic idea left in the shadows. Cramming eighteen songs in just over thirty minutes of creative mayhem means the album warrants and needs full attention so as not to miss any of the exhilarating drama within tracks which range from fourteen seconds to just short of four minutes in length. But the rewards are unrelenting and furiously imposing in one of the albums of the year.

Hailing from Zürich, the trio of guitarist/vocalist Valentin Baumgartner, bassist/vocalist Amedeo Mauriello, and drummer Andrea Tinner, unleash a sound which reaps the essences of mathcore and progressive metal and filters it through a vat of avant-garde, grindcore, and metalcore ingenuity. It comes out as a sound which can be best described as The Dillinger Escape Plan and System of a Down meets Destrage, Toumaï, and Kontrust yet isn’t like that either. It is a unique concoction which flirts and dances with senses as it brutalises them, and quite irresistible.

Themed by the sick and bad world our mothers warned us of, In Love Your Mother start the album and examination with The Mother Song. A thirty second tsunami of vocal causticity and rhythmic hostility speared by a sonic spite and toxic groove which all combines for a furious and concussive but appetite inflaming onslaught. Its swift assault is followed by the less intensive but no more lightweight 2116@#1916. It is immediately contagious, something alone impressive such its brevity of length, a slice of coarsely melodic and respectfully corrosive groove metal which slips agreeably before the vicious presence of We’re Gonna Dance Till Everyone Is Naked And Fallen Apart takes over. A metalcore canvas of vocals and maliciousness is soon twisted and bound in a weave of unpredictable and schizophrenic invention, the guitar of Baumgartner scything and spearing the heart of the tempest with breath-taking and psyche addling ingenuity. It is a manic endeavour matched by the swinging arms and prods of Tinner and the throaty creative predation of Mauriello. The longest song on the album, it explores and evolves with every second, bewitching and bewildering ears with almost hostile intent. The beauty of this and all songs, is the seamless and fluid transitions, one moment a bestial rampancy becomes a seductive croon and melodic embrace in another, all without a twitch of uncertainty or flex of ILYM_TGAP_albumcoverrandomness.

Johnny Rocket Is Not Dead launches its majestic uncompromising tirade next, grooves and bass temptation as eager and impacting as the vocal squalls and twisted sonic probing aligning to a rhythmic badgering. It is only one turn in the fifty second odd track though, as mentioned earlier every chord and jab of drums the detour to new and generally enthralling bliss, as evidenced no more potently than in Signs Of A Medium Life which splits the two parts of the title track. A hardcore/grind fuelled provocation, the track savages and pounds on the senses from the off. Riffs and beats show no mercy within the stalking gait of the song nor the blistering vocal roar which also has some restraint in its confrontation. Through the storm though, there are small and larger slithers of inventive majesty which enthral as much as the bruising thrust of the song.

The two bits of The Great Ape Project grab the hunger inspired already by band and album, but are swiftly surpassed by the brilliance of the also two parted Wish Me An Ocean, the first of its two scintillating movements a furnace of sonic fire and blistering psychotic beauty steered superbly by bass and drums. From the hasty senses foraging of its counterpart and the haunting piano sculpted drama of Drop The Back Of The Line, In Love Your Mother ignite another major blaze with Signs Of A Real Life. Striding forcibly with rhythmic and sonic nostrils flaring, the track soon slips into something more cantankerous and intimidating, crawling over senses and thoughts with a rabid breath and bestial intensity. It is just one border of the landscape though, an exotic melodic insanity blooming before a final fury emerges.

Through the thrillingly deranged, slightly post punk/noise rock spiced The Disco Fish, the melodically searing and perfectly crazed Inhale, and the restful and emotionally unbalanced Wish Me An Ocean Part 0, the album continues to engross and disorientate. But it is all just an appetiser for the pinnacle of the album, which is the song In Love Your Mother. With its first touch, a ridiculously addictive groove which only intensifies its lure as it is joined by rampant beats and a pleasingly varied vocal persuasion, the track is pure sonic and inventive alchemy. Demanding and infectious, imposing and wantonly accessible, it is a bargain for the soul made of the devil, a term which applies to the whole of the album.

The Hedgehog is more pure in its assault, its extreme metal rabidity direct and untethered yet still veined by a sonic enterprise to spellbind ears and thoughts. Its potent success is emulated by the inhospitable but irrepressibly catchy Ein Hase, Zwei Haese. With a swagger which only inflames its savagery and warped ingenuity equally, the track is a twisted mouth-watering blaze of unpredictability and extreme metal maliciousness to linger over.

Closed by the lo-fi folk croon of a track simply called Outro, The Great Ape Project is a sensational introduction to a band with the potential and invention to turn metal on its head at any time. The release is one of the real triumphs of the year and deserves the fullest of attention.

The Great Ape Project is available now @ http://www.cduniverse.com/productinfo.asp?pid=9357440

http://www.inloveyourmother.com

RingMaster 10/10/2014

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A Breach of Silence – The Darkest Road

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Though the tightness of its grip fluctuates across its fourteen roars, The Darkest Road is a creative fury easy to breed a greedy appetite for. Unleashed by Australian metallers A Breach of Silence, it is a tempestuous slab of varied styles and flavours which has been labelled as “powercore”. Melding the potent flavours of metalcore through to post hardcore, heavy metal on to melodic death metal, and we are missing out many more spices, it is a compelling proposition which never gives ears and imagination time to settle or spawn expectations.

The Darkest Road follows the successful and acclaimed debut album Dead or Alive which was released a year ago. With having Australia’s prestigious Q Music Award in the Best Heavy Song category (2012) under their belt, which helped lead the band to signing with Eclipse Records, their first full-length pushed A Breach Of Silence into a new intensive and global spotlight, backed potently by the band’s live presence which has seen them share stages with the likes of Born of Osiris, Adept, The Amity Affliction, and Upon a Burning Body. Earlier this year the band released their controversial Night Rider ‘first-person shooter’ music video which took inspiration from their obsession with FPS video games and 1960’s classic westerns such as Hang ‘em High and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Now The Darkest Road is upon us to stir up ears and thoughts whilst making another impressive step in the ascent of the Brisbane quintet.

Recorded with producers Fredrik Nordstrom and Henrik Udd (Bring Me the Horizon, Arch Enemy, In Flames), The Darkest Road as suggested ebbs and follows in the strength of its certainly unrelenting captivation, sometimes throwing a spanner in the works of getting a handle on songs and the release, but it only adds to the welcome and inventive unpredictability and constantly intriguing nature of the encounter. The album certainly starts with furious gusto and anthemic irresistibility, opener T.P.N.E shoving group shouts through ears before wiry grooves and heavy rumbling rhythms join the emerging storm. The raw and caustic vocal squalls of Rhys Flannery swiftly more in with antagonistic and skilled intent which in turn seems to light a fire in the creative swings of drummer Andrew Cotterell and the similarly vivacious motion of the grooves conjured up by Mat Cosgrove and Kerrod Dabelstein. It is a gripping and incendiary blend which is capped off by the throaty lure of bassist Blair Layt and more so by his outstanding clean vocal delivery. The song offers richly flavoursome and agitated metal of the highest order and an inescapable lure into the creative lair of A Breach of Silence, an entrance backed powerfully by the following title track.

The second song caresses ears with the impressive tones of Layt right away, evocative keys coaxing the invitation before riffs and acidic grooves erupt to trap and steal the passions all over again. As its predecessor, the track is a formidable Printencounter which is unafraid to bewitch and bewilder, seduce and rile, with a unique character seeded in the likes of All That Remains and In Flames. Its stature and temptation is matched by Vultures which strides confidently in next. Another certain anthem with its group calls and raging rhythmic confrontation, the song blazes sonically and vocally from the start, the extremes of voices a perfect union within the similarly blended canvas of predatory and melodically smouldering sounds.

Through the intensive yet warming examination of Silhouette, as the others songs upon The Darkest Road, a hope rich and potent roar against life’s obstacles, the band reveals more of their technical and imagination driven resourcefulness. A scent of Bullet For My Valentine hints throughout the evolving and inventive offering before Hang ‘em High sets its own individual fire within the release. Riffs and rhythms spew anger with their intensive and physical intent whilst Flannery almost brawls with ears through his uncompromising and pleasing vocal antagonism. It is a potent and engrossing song if without the spark of those before it, a comment which can be placed before In Reality We Trust also, though as always with the album it is mostly down to personal taste. The song storms and bleeds spite over the senses with skill and enterprise but it is mainly the vocals from both men which steal the plaudits.

From here the album does not have an identity crisis but definitely wrong-foots with persistence. Though all the tracks so far employed a diverse and varied spicing, they were bred from a fierce extreme metal canvas. The excellent Lost at Sea brings a new bloom of sound, immediately expelling a ‘folkish’ tinge to its air as well as a glorious melodic croon across its potent harmonies and sonic narrative. It is a loud whisper of something different in some ways but helps seed a new hostile and captivating breath to the album, and makes for an enthrallingly textured and majestic slice of persuasion.

   This is the End comes next and instantly spins an engaging sonic and rhythmic web around ears. It is a contagiously compelling weave, guitars and bass a simultaneously welcoming and menacing enticement over which the vocals merge hostile and catchy elements with a classic metal spiced attack. Every chord and rhythmic swipe brings a surprise and unexpected twist, the song emerging as another pinnacle and treat for the album, something Immortal is not. To be fair again it is just a personal thing but its heavy/power metal balladry complete with the genre’s trademark vocals warbles and squeals, just does not find a welcome in these ears though it is easy to hear its qualities and know it will be a favourite with classic metal fans. The song is another unique identity within the character of the album, though to call The Darkest Road schizophrenic would be going too far.

The excellent Hannibal is more from the template of earlier songs, its metalcore voracity and melodic tenacity an infectious and voracious treat which parts for the even heavier and harsher A Place I Know. The song also expels fiery melodic endeavour, again with a more classic spicing, before exploring slimmer post hardcore scenery punctuated with probably the most intensive beats and riffs on the album. It is a song which sets a fire in the belly at times but also lowers its temperature in others, but for intrigue and bold invention it is another notable moment.

Dead and Destroyed is simply brutal, a wall of angst and viciousness which still makes room for vocal croons whilst Krazy Bitch seems to pull in all the things which excites and personally frustrates in the album for a still rather pleasing encounter. The pair leaves the piano and voice sculpted ballad Time Still Remains to close the album, the song a more than decent piece of melodic metal but easy to skip by to get back to the pungent heights the album started on all over again.

The Darkest Road is a striking release, with to be honest any issues found coming from just the individual likes and dislikes we all have in our metal. It is easy to see A Breach of Silence becoming a big player in world metal if this thrilling tempest is anything to go by.

The Darkest Road is available now on Eclipse Records @ http://www.eclipserecords.biz/a-breach-of-silence-the-darkest-road-cd/

https://www.facebook.com/abreachofsilenceband

RingMaster 10/10/2014

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Manilow – Cease and Desist EP

 

 

Manilow

With the aggressive contagion of Fuckshovel, the sonic seduction of PiL, and the raw energy and antagonism of UK Subs, UK punks Manilow make a striking and irresistible entrance with debut EP Cease and Desist. Consisting of four varied and ridiculously compelling songs, the release is a spark lying in wait to ignite the passions of all punks past and presence, as well as the start of a potent and greedily devoured presence for the band.

Tagged as post punk but as much punk, alternative, and noise rock as that equally rich spice, Manilow springs from South London and has seemingly already brewed up a strong buzz around themselves in the year since forming. Now making a fuller and wider announcement of their presence, sound, and intent, the trio of vocalist/guitarist Dean Moston, drummer Gary Cardno, and bassist Paul Chamberlain stir up a nostalgic and distinctly fresh and antagonistic storm with the excellent Cease and Desist EP. Co-produced by Part Chimp’s Tim Cedar and mastered by former Quireboy Guy Bailey, the EP twists and stomps with a creative relish and down to earth attitude which seizes the imagination whilst inflaming old school ears and fresh adrenaline fuelled bodies.

Cease and Desist opens with Missing, an instantly caustic blaze with bluesy riffs and grooves flirting with throaty bass bait and heavily jabbing beats. Unpolished and excitingly abrasive, the track strides with a seventies breath recalling the likes of Angelic Upstarts and Ruts, and a garage punk scuzziness with whispers of the Stooges. It is an instantly and increasingly addictive encounter, easy to add limbs and voice to whilst it roars and provokes.Cease and Desist CD Cover

The following Law Here ventures into the post punk side of the band. From a potent and firmly coaxing cold bassline, guitars respectfully flare up and drizzle psych kissed sonic designs over ears and thoughts. That PiL reference is a strong whiff here with the breeze of keys provided by Chamberlain tempering and seducing that appealing scent. Perpetually colourful in its elegant and reserved but caustically toned flight, the song swirls and growls like something related to early The Horrors and The Damned whilst transfixing ears with constant resourcefulness and magnetism.

Things kick up another gear with the final pair of tracks. Firstly there is the brawling tenacity and charm of Control Issue. From its first second, riffs snarl and badger the senses whilst the beats of Cardno rap with fresh menace. Fuelled by the aggressive tones of Moston, the song seems to grow in attitude and contempt but invites further listener participation with its terrace like bred chorus and sonic invention. It is a rip-roaring treat of a provocation matched by the closing might of Vitamins. A resonating throb of bass announces its intimidating appearance, a predatory lure swiftly wrapped in a sonic acidity from Moston’s guitar. From within the impending assault a rhythmic hypnotism emerges, Cardno soon gripping feet and hunger with a Wire like temptation. It is not too long either before compelling and contagious hooks leap at ears and passions, their simple but irrepressible enticement the lead into a vocally raw chorus. With spicy blues hues brought through the melodic and scorching endeavour of the guitar to flirt with the uncompromising hook driven spine of the song, the closer is a riveting and blissfully satisfying end to an excellent debut.

Punk in all its shades and corners is going through a thrilling adventure right now, especially in the UK, and adding another fresh and delicious string to its bow is Manilow.

The Cease and Desist EP is available from October 10th @ http://manilow.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/Manilow.band/

RingMaster 10/10/2014

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Viathyn – Cynosure

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With a sound which revolves within a web of progressive, folk, power, and melodic metal, drawing on varying degrees of each essence with every twist of their imagination and invention, Canadian metallers Viathyn present another contagious and gripping proposition with new album Cynosure. Nine individual musical and creative emprises thick, the album presents a fruitful and colourful journey for ears and imagination. Every track is an intriguing and at times demanding proposition with more going on than can be taken in on initial unions. It is an attention wanting enticement though which roars with a melodic tenacity and strolls with muscular flirtation to give the richest rewards.

Formed in 2006, initially as the trio of guitarist Tomislav Crnkovic, guitarist Jacob Wright, and drummer Dave Crnkovic, Viathyn released the instrumental Demagogue EP in 2008. From there the band expanded with bassist Alex Kot coming in, whilst Tomislav added vocals to his duties. Debut album The Peregrine Way was unveiled in 2010 to enthused reactions from fans and media alike. It marked the band out for their songwriting, instrumentation, and equally the storytelling which on the album told the journey of an unnamed wandering man, through the highs and lows of his life. Cynosure is bred from the same creative template, in many ways an obvious continuation of its predecessor rather than providing a startling evolution in sound and intent, but still pushing the limits and enterprise of the band to new riveting and pleasing levels.

The album starts with Ageless Stranger, a track with an epic leaning tone and resourceful melodic scenery from the off. Guitars, keys, and vocal harmonies instantly spawn a radiant yet portentous atmosphere which the jabbing beats of Dave guides with a firm hand, leading it all into a rugged terrain of rampant riffs and concussive rhythms. The song is still swarmed over by the melodic appetite of the keys and guitars though, everything coming together for a maelstrom like tempest of enticement. The strong vocals of Tomislav bring another tempting texture to the mix whilst the fluid craft of Jacob bewitches from within the aggressive stride of the song. It is a pungent and invigorating start which as its successor, as much brings thoughts of a Dommin or Volbeat as it does of bands like Wuthering Heights and KingBathmat. The song is a constantly twisting and unpredictable yet flowing proposition matched by The Coachman.

The second song takes little time to explore a richer folk enterprise to its emerging stride of rock ‘n’ roll, before weaving in just as potent essences of heavy metal and melodic rock. It is impossible not to be drawn right into its vigorous revelry, Album Cover - Viathyn  - Cynosure - 2014every turn and new idea a lure to devour with ease and greed. The brief expulsion of raw growls does not quite work but is a mere instant in a song which vocally and musically simply infects ears and imagination for a thoroughly rewarding and enjoyable encounter. There is also a theatrical mischief to the song which is given full clarity at the song’s end before Edward Mordrake thunders in on a storm of rhythmic agitation and fiery sonic temptation. Though not as immediately gripping as its predecessors, the song, with its seamless movement through varied gaits and imaginative endeavours, binds senses and thoughts in its successfully exploratory and surprising expression to keep them hungry and enthralled. The track also raises up slight comparisons to fellow Canadians New Jacobin Club at times, the drama in the skilled invention of the band’s individuals a similar and inescapable persuasion.

As mentioned there is plenty going on to reflect with mere words, this track a prime example as are both the following Shadows In Our Wake and Countess of Discordia, but that richness of depth and often tempestuously unleashed ideation ensures each partaking of a song reveals new aspects and adventures. The first of this pair of songs encloses ears with a heavy aggressive breath though it is soon aligned to an evocative wash of keys and the melodic narrative of the guitars. A thick gothic ambience also coats the song, lingering across the sinew toughened canvas and subsequent dramatic turns within the track whilst the second of the two leads by a great bass coaxing into a heavy and power metal blaze. Whether storming the senses with nostrils flared or seducing with mellower bordering on sinister melodies, the song is a glorious sonic waltz which gets better and bolder with every passing second.

Time Will Take Us All struggles to emulate the success of the previous song but still has ears and thoughts seriously engaged with its opening melancholic caress of keys and guitar, a potency matched by the emotive delivery of Tomislav. It is a song which as all on the album, builds and develops into a different proposition as it proceeds, its gentle climate discovering an imposing turbulence and emotive beauty along the way. It is not a track which lingers as others but provides another gripping tale to immerse within before the excellent folk/power metal escapade of Three Sheets To The Wind steals the passions. With a touch of Alestorm and Tyr to its Celtic folk stomp, the track swiftly recruits unbridled attention. As anthemic as all good power metal triumphs should be, the track soon has body and voice in tandem before exploring a progressive crafted landscape of mystery and invention, to keep ears and thoughts on their toes.

Completed by the dark atmospheric menace of Albedo, an outstanding track which is as predatory as it is sonically radiant and infectiously irresistible, and the closing title track, Cynosure is a peach of an encounter. The last song sums up release and band perfectly, an encounter built on a riotous elegance and creative bedlam honed into something sublime and intricately structured, not forgetting gloriously presented. The album is fun, at times unafraid to let its serious side have a rest, but most of all Cynosure is one of the most enjoyable and enterprising progressive metal releases this year.

The self-released Cynosure is available now @ http://viathyn.bandcamp.com/album/cynosure

http://www.viathyn.com

RingMaster 09/10/2014

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Quartered – Eyes And Ears

Quartered - Press Photo - Credit Tyler Branston

The first thing to say about the Eyes And Ears EP from Canadian band Quartered, is it gives no real evidence to why the band self-describes themselves as progressive metal. Now genres and tags never truly represent the complete sound of a band but unless we have misunderstood what progressive metal is, it is no way the suggestion we would give to the potent sound running through the band’s release. Now call it alternative metal with a metalcore tendency and you are closer to the captivating persuasion fuelling a highly accomplished and satisfying proposition. Though not something rigorously unique, the Vancouver quartet’s sound stands as an individual incitement for ears and thoughts but most of all, it is simply potential soaked and highly enjoyable.

Quartered has earned an acclaimed reputation locally and further afield since its four friends came together around six or so years ago. Taking inspirations from the likes of Deftones, Tool, and Thrice, the band has become accustomed to praise for their live performances which has seen them play with the likes of Lamb of God, Testament , Slapshock, Bif Naked, Kobra and The Lotus, Ninjaspy, and Over The Coals through numerous festivals, tours, and shows. Their 2010 album Walks Like A Ghost equally garnered strongly positive responses and ensured that once news of Eyes And Ears broke, anticipation was fiercely keen.

The release opens with the excellent Blink Blink Flash, a track swiftly stirring up ears and appetite with its raw sonic entrance and coaxing. The guitar of Jeff Wang scorches the small hairs on flesh as it heads to the senses, laying down fine bait before the vocal roar of Greg Williams explodes with energy and passion alongside the rhythmic incitement of drummer Scotty Miller. It is a formidable start which only seems to find greater intensity as Williams explores his excellent clean delivery and the bass of Craig Rudder unveils its throaty drama. Twists in the vocal attack and jabbing hooks increase the intrigue and potency of the song and though it never explodes as it hints it might, the inventiveness and unpredictable tenacity of the song easily ignites imagination and passions. It is easy to feel the Deftones influence even in a song which is distinct to Quartered and it does the impressive protagonist no harm at all.

The following Call Me Crazy is a mellower proposition, melodies instantly wrapping ears within an evocative ambience before post hardcore like vocal and riffery adds its antagonism. It is a pungent beginning which loses some of its lure Album Cover - Quartered - Eyes And Ears - 2014with the strong but not this time as striking smooth and melodic vocals, which in turn inspires a more relaxed pressure around them. When the song rages with nostril flared though, it is a mighty slice of provocation and another aspect to the promise of the band. Its successor Violent Love, like the first track, provides a virulent temptation and pleasure as a harsh caustic assault is merged with respectful and harmonious warmth. It works perfectly, the track at ease and full potency either snarling and gnawing on the senses or seducing them. It is fair to say that the band is not setting new templates with the song and their sound but for a thoroughly exciting and impressive incitement, it is an undeniable treat.

Speak of the Devil similarly provides a riveting and thrilling encounter, its melodic rock charm and more rugged angst fuelled passion a radiant and resourceful flame of craft and enterprise. Its captivation is succeeded by the infectious She Sees Colour, a catchy and emotive caress on ears which enchants and provokes satisfied emotions with Palms like vivacity. It is a song which again does not quite catch fire as it might but easily provides another major highlight on the increasingly impressing release.

Neither Take Me There Tonight nor Echoes can match what comes before, yet with its predacious touch and tone aligned to skilled musical and vocal design, the first of the pair makes for a compelling and persistently pleasing encounter. The second of the two is a flight of emotion and hungry endeavour which evolves from a gentle caress to a raw and caustic emotional rage. It also leaves thoughts and appetite hooked but pales against the qualities of earlier songs and the closing success of Ricochet.

The final song on the EP is the most groove infested encounter on the release, fusing that irresistible spice with the now expected excellently thought out and presented vocals amidst a commanding rhythmic framing courted by superb guitar invention. It is a powerful end to a strong and absorbing encounter. Though it is easy to feel there is more to come and be discovered by Quartered to really forge a unique place in metal, Eyes and Ears is an impressive step on the way and very easy to want to keep coming back to.

The self-released Eyes And Ears is available now @ http://quartered.bandcamp.com/album/eyes-and-ears

http://www.Quartered.ca

RingMaster 09/10/2014

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

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Vaudeville Remedy – Ladykiller EP

 

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If you are looking for some blues punk rock with a raw and tenacious presence than you could do a lot worse than to check out the Ladykiller EP from Canadian rockers Vaudeville Remedy. It is a lo-fi and honest brawl of rock ‘n’ roll which is as captivating as it is passionate, and very easy to engulf the senses with time and time again.

Recorded in the basement studio of the Assiniboia, Saskatchewan trio, the DIY EP presents an in your face presence with songs which have been recorded live and are uninfected by polish and trickery. As mentioned the band has an honest sound which says take me as I am and it makes for an intriguing and enjoyable proposition. It is always fun to climb on board with a band at the relative start of its emergence, Vaudeville Remedy founded in 2009, and watch it grow. This trio is no exception, the new release showing a more aggressive and angry intensity and intent to that found on its predecessor, the thirteen-track Squeaky wheels of 2012. This is a band still evolving and exploring its depths and sound, but as Ladykiller shows one set to provide thrills along the way.

The release opens with The Winds Of Shit, an atmospheric piece of portentous sonic haze swirling around cinematic samples and stalking yet restrained beats. It is an attention awakening entrance into the EP though no real hint of what ladykiller ep cd coveris to come. What does follow is the rampant antagonistic devilry of the title track. Senses grazing riffs and rolling rhythms make the first impression alongside a great weave of blues scented grooves. It is an imagination holding blaze of craft and easy going but imposing riffs linked to those fiery grooves. The vocals, as the song, are offered in their rawest form and though they do not always capture ears as potently as the sounds around them, they only add to the live and dirty feel of the occasion of the song’s recording.

From the compelling rolling beats and the blistering sonic lure of the guitar, especially the excellent scorching solo, through to the antagonistic prowl of the bass, the song is a potent and exciting start but soon surpassed by the excellent Superhero Jizz. It is dirt clad, abrasing rock at its most captivating; again riffs and rhythms sculpting an irresistible riot of energy and temptation which is rabidly coloured by excellent vocal incitement and sizzling melodic acidity. The best track on the EP, it is a blaze of contagious and essential heavy, hungry rock ‘n’ roll.

Next up is Bong Rips, a brief slab of infection rising from a thick enticing bassline and growing strands of blues kissed sonic endeavour. It is as raw as it gets on Ladykiller, coming over as if it is right there staring at the listener face to face and again very satisfying, the same feeling and success which can be applied to closing song Headbanger’s Blue. Whereas the earlier songs feel like they have had a little time put into them for the recording, the final pair are as live as it gets, and a great notice of what the band is like in person and why they should be checked out in that state.

Vaudeville Remedy is a band with a sound and approach as honest as the day is long. There are no shortcuts and frivolous flourishes to their music, just the essential ingredients for real rock ‘n’ roll. This band is not re-inventing the wheel but they are heating up the original with some relish.

The Ladykiller EP is available digitally, on CD, and vinyl now @ https://thevaudevilleremedy.bandcamp.com/album/lady-killer-e-p

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Vaudeville-Remedy/237873806253225

RingMaster 10/10/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

http://audioburger247.webs.com/