Die No More – Elected Evil

Die No More Online Promo Shot

If like us you were gripped by the Blueprint EP from UK metallers Die No More, then get ready for an even greater riot of Bay Area inspired thrash from the Cumbria band in the voracious shape of debut album Elected Evil. Again the band wears its influences on its muscular sleeve with a sound which rings with the loud echoes of certainly Metallica and Megadeth, but for newcomers to the band rest assured neither of those bands has released a tempest in recent times as hungry and richly enjoyable as Die No More’s first full-length.

Formed in 2011 and hailing out of Penrith, Die No More consists of four friends with the single aim of creating modern metal seeded in classic designs. Aggressively heavy and melodically fiery, the band’s sound uses familiarity to their inspirations as another texture in their not exactly startlingly original but certainly vivaciously fresh and furiously virulent endeavours. The Blueprint EP alongside the band’s live performances awoke a sturdy and attentive spotlight from fans and media alike upon the band. Potential drenched and passionate, the release made a potent declaration of a band on the march, a creative attack which finds greater depths and character within Elected Evil. Recently signed with Rocksector Records, Die No More is a band heading towards the frontline of British metal and the album, which they recorded with producer Matt Elllis (Black Spiders, Absolva and Massive Wagons), the creative sledgehammer to lay the foundations.

Sinister portentous scenery opens up album and first track Dark World, sonic wind with an apocalyptic undercurrent immersing ears and imagination. Its coaxing is then rudely interrupted by a thunderous slam of beats from drummer Steve Orchiton and a torrent of heavy predatory riffs from guitarists Marc Farquhar and Kev Smith. Within a few breaths the intimidating avalanche settles into a just as formidable stride of rabid rhythms and menacingly prowling riffs. There are no real surprises to the song but loaded with an inescapably anthemic persuasion driven by the excellent vocals of Farquhar, it roars and seduces with virulent thrash bred hostility. The bass of Martyn Simpson is almost bestial in tone and touch which adds to the threat and lure of the song whilst Smith provides plenty of melodic flame and intrigue to bring extra mouth-watering temptation to every raw snarl of enterprise.

It is a virulent and outstanding opening to the album, a commanding entrance continued by the even more impressive Soul Destroyer. Stalking ears and imagination with scowling riffs and thunderous rhythms, the outstanding provocation immediately binds the passions in its antagonistic proposal. Grooves flirt with and sear the senses whilst beats and basslines impose further intimidation, all converging on thoughts with resourceful and ravenous intent. To that though inventive sparks, melodic invention, and the continually contagious vocals add greater colour and imagination to the song. There is again something persistently recognisable to the song but not in the weave and feverish way that Die No More cast songs.

The following Absentia offers a darker sultry climate to explore, the increasingly addictive throaty tone of bass veining a canter of predacious guitar suasion and punchy beats which in turn surrounds the sandy tones of Farquhar. 10665776_912335752111902_8565161791212898740_nWhereas its predecessors rampaged across and forcibly stalked the senses, the third song takes a more restrained approach to its grudge, instead exploring a broader and richer tapestry of sonic craft draped in evocative hues. Not as swift in enslaving thoughts and passions as previous songs, it emerges just as potent over time though it is straight away surpassed by a beast of a track in Council Of War. Another slowly asserting its menace and intensity initially, it is soon careering through ears with unrelenting energy and ferocity. It is a perpetual gnawing on ears, simultaneously nagging body and emotions whilst binding them in a masterful sonic web as psyche scorching creativity from Smith blazes away.

The peaks keep coming as the album moves through its tracks, next up One In The Chamber as content and accomplished in bruising the senses as it is in lighting the imagination with a melodic and evocative beauty. The two sides are more often than not side by side across the tempestuous and emotionally agitated incitement, the song in its individual way another epidemic of contagious and aggression fuelled drama making appetite and ears hungrier for more. It is a greed swiftly fed by the arguably unremarkable but seriously thrilling Connection Lost. The track has a rein on its riffery and controlled yet imposing rhythms and in many ways feeds expectations from start to finish yet equally it confronts them in something invigorating and ultimately fresh. Hindsight says it provides a strong and satisfying encounter but constantly in its presence the track is another riotous treat.

As soon as a heavy grizzled bassline hits ears to start Blood In The Veins off, emotions are ready to leap upon the song, especially when it is joined by a single minded and paced bait of beats. Guitars are not far behind, adding to the irresistible tempting with their corrosive and similarly predatory endeavour. With a swagger which is as testy and threatening as the nature of bass and riffery, and a swing to the rhythms that almost has you ducking with every swipe, the track easily seduces the passions. It feels at times as if it is more improv than predetermined and makes scintillating company before passing the thrills loaded baton onto closer Oblivious. The final track is pure thrash ferociousness speared with melodic intrigue and punk brewed belligerence. The listener is grabbed and drawn deep into its anthem early on, feet and voice eager partners in crime under the lure of the excellent nostrils flaring stomp.

It is fair to say that anticipation for Elected Evil because of the band’s EP was hungry and demanding but Die No More not only feeds every want but provides additional promise fuelled adventure revealing their mature and creative growth. Yes the band still comes with a healthy dose of Metallica and Exodus flavouring but as stated earlier certainly in the case of the former, they have not come up with anything in recent times to breed the level of satisfaction and pleasure as spawned by Die No More.

Elected Evil is available now via Rocksector Records, details at http://www.mwaweb.com/rocksectorbands_dienomore.htm


RingMaster 03/11/2014

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Witchrider – Unmountable Stairs


With a sound somewhere between Queens of The Stone Age and a pact between Nirvana and Soundgarden, nodding to the former more often than not, Austrian rockers Witchrider are poised to present their debut album Unmountable Stairs. It is a fiery and rigorously captivating proposition which merges familiarity with raw invention, culminating in a release which does not leave a blaze in its wake but definitely a smouldering and lingering temptation which persistently increases to leave appetite and satisfaction bloated.

Hailing from Graz, Witchrider began in the November of 2012 with initially the name Desert Mountain but soon decided the current name was a better fit for their music, the title taken from “riding the witch”, a another term for sleep paralysis. The band wear their inspirations from the likes of QOTSA and Eagles Of Death Metal openly but employ them in their own scuzzy recipe as evidenced on the new album and the band’s previous self-titled EP of last year. Initially a trio of vocalist Daniel Dorninger, guitarist Hans-Peter Leitner, and drummer Michael Hirschmugl, the band enlisted bassist Bernhard Weigl for their live shows who subsequently became a full-time member and makes up the quartet unleashing the colourful treats upon the Fuzzorama Records released Unmountable Stairs.

OCD starts things off, looming up on ears from a distance with sultry fuzz lit riffs and caustic melodies. A loud breath of Josh Homme and co is unmissable but it only adds to the intrigue and drama which comes with the song. Firm beats and a bass rumble brings shadows whilst the vocals of Dorninger, as the music, are not that far removed from a Homme like delivery and texture. The raw air to the song equally brings an imagination awakening aspect whilst the scorched slightly warped grooves and hooks throughout the opener, just hold ears and passions in their grip. It is a tasty contagion that has hunger for more bordering on lustful, so it is good that the following 1 For 5 is just as raucously compelling and virulently infectious. A bulging bassline matched by resonating beats provide an irresistible skeleton to the fusion of noise and stoner rock, swiftly hints of the likes of Melvins and Kyuss converging on thoughts as the song spreads its flames of sonic enterprise. Bedlamic at times, the track provides another twist and aspect to the sound and invention of the band, the two ridiculously addictive opening songs closely related in structure but individually striking.

The pair of Black and new single I’m Outta Breath keeps things boiling nicely, the first sending sonic shards through ears and across a feisty mesh of again heavily QOTSA influenced rhythms and riffs, before acidic scythes of sound aligned to potent vocal harmonies and melodic exploration express their tantalising narratives. It is a fascinating if less than explosive encounter which still easily grips attention before its successor strides in with an instant creative and addictive devilry. Riffs and hooks need little time to start reeling in the imagination and passions, whilst soaring blazes of guitar light the insatiable temptation of the song. Though it is one of the songs seemingly more intent on being catchy and enslaving its recipients it is also one of the most original and unique in sound, and if any comparison can be raised it is that of Australian band Voyager.

Its infection whets the appetite all over again ready for the scuzzy tempting of Far From You, a proposition cored by a pungent throaty bassline and a Nirvana-esque sonic scowl. With an additional hue of blues causticity, the track hits the spot without sparking additional lust before the melodic climate of SP immerses ears in its enticing graze of sound courted by mellow vocals. It also lacks the something extra which ignites the single but matches it on being something more uniquely different to Witchrider in sound, whilst both tracks parade encounters which still only add to the increasing potency of the album.

   The Cabin strolls in next with a dramatic air to its persuasion and wonderfully toxic sound, bass and riffs stalking ears with lustful intent for another helping of addictive pleasure. It is a sinister outing with a portentous breath to even its melodic fire whilst its predatory nature is a giveaway even under the erosive atmosphere of the excellent track. It’s almost theatrical narrative in word and sound is emulated by The Fog, the song also employing a gait which prowls with a devilish glint in its manner but with an even slower and heavier lumber. Additional attention reveals the real difference to the two songs which a casual listen misses, and both tracks create a haunting psychedelic landscape of intrigue and creativity which apart or together sparks imagination and pleasure.

Next the album’s title track strides through a Sabbath-esque terrain with Black Tusk like structures, across which spicy harmonies and wiry grooves lay out their mystery and incendiary temptation. As the album it is a slow burning but undeniable grower which makes the fullest seduction over time unlike Witch-Hunt which steals ardour and acclaim on the first examination of its tenacious enterprise over a sinew boned canvas. Marked by rutting riffs and beats inside a caustic wash of sonic enticing, the track flirts with the same spicery that flavours most songs but turns it into its own, not necessarily unique but definitely riveting trap.

The album is completed by the bluesy Styx, a track which as enjoyable as it is never quite convinces to the same depths as others songs upon Unmountable Stairs. Nevertheless with a presence which to these ears would be like Josh Homme plays the Kinks, it is a fine end to an increasingly impressing and fun release. The album as a whole announces that Witchrider is a band with all the invention and imagination to make a big impact, especially if they can or want to evolve a truly unique sound, the one thing reining in Unmountable Stairs from being a startling debut.

Unmountable Stairs is available from November 14th via Fuzzorama Records @ http://www.fuzzoramastore.com/en/cd-s/witchrider-the-unmountable-stairs.html


November sees Witchrider on tour with Truckfighters, with dates at…

Nov 10 – Brudenell LEEDS; Nov 11 – Sound Control MANCHESTER; Nov 12 – King Tuts Wah Wah Hut GLASGOW; Nov 13 – The Basement NOTTINGHAM; Nov 14 – O2 Academy Islington LONDON; Nov 15 Hard Rock Hell – PWLLHELI; Nov 16 – Oobleck BIRMINGHAM.

RingMaster 03/11/2014

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hAND – Kintsugi

Hand Online Promo Shot

UK progressive rockers hAND unveils their third album Kintsugi this week, a mixed bag of an encounter but a captivating and pleasingly unpredictable proposition which ignites the imagination if not always the passions. It is an adventurous and diversely flavoured tapestry of creative imagination and inventive ideation which musically hits the spot more often than not.

At times compromising this creative emprise though are the vocals of bassist Kat Ward. The lady has a solid and potent presence vocally, but whether it is the production which makes her tones lie uneasy on the sounds or the style of delivery she rigidly sticks to, providing an almost Chino Moreno like ‘moan’ to her presentation, there is a dampening of the fiery energy ripe within the release . It works superbly at times but across the whole release lacks the spark to ignite ears and tracks. Variety and a regular snarl in that department is arguably the missing ingredient to fully round off what is a potential embraced encounter, the thought that maybe another voice to back up and share the frontline with Ward is a move to contemplate.

As we mentioned at the top though, Kintsugi is a compelling and intriguing proposal for ears and emotions which bubbles throughout with a cauldron of invigorating and riveting flavours. This our introduction to the 2004 formed band, we cannot say how hAND has evolved their sound from predecessor Breathing, but that release certainly drew well-received responses and there is no expectation of Kintsugi not doing the same. From the start the Sussex quartet has awoken increasing attention with early EPs Chapters and Shadow: Word Pain, debut album Deadroom Journal through to its 2011 successor, and the band’s live presence. The year of the last album also saw a line-up change which seemingly only increased the band’s impetus. Taking 2013 out from their live aspect, hAND set about writing their third full-length, recording it earlier this year with, as on their previous albums, producer Nick Hemmingway. What has emerged is an album which enthrals and grows in strength and creative expression with every listen but one with that tempering factor talked of earlier.

The album erupts in a mesh of transfixing sonic dazzling from the keys of Tom Johnstone as Level 1 sets things off. With firm beats spearing their lure and the guitar of Kieren Johnstone dancing as magnetically and imaginatively as the synths, it is a delicious start to song and album. Progressive rock with a healthy soaking of pop, the track continues to seduce as Ward’s vocals radiantly add to the tantalising textures enveloping the senses. Riffs and melodies almost prowl with revelry at times whilst bass and drums make a potent if understated frame upon which the song lays its flood of engrossing hues. Persistently lively and towards its conclusion finding a more aggressive urgency, the song is a feisty and appetite sparking beginning.

From its vivacious charge, the band explores an evocative landscape with Windlestraw. Its entrance is a chilled but mellow coaxing which lures the imagination before exploding with a tempest of predatory riffs and growling bass 1959703_10151965258567263_1347529515_nantagonism. It is a fiery mixture which is reinforced by the flames of synth enterprise which also erupts. The storm is the start of an evolving and fluctuating climate pitching together provocative calm and furious sonic turbulence aligned to rhythmic hostility. Though it does not flow as smoothly as its predecessor, the track is a gripping drama of creative endeavour and imposing imagination which as the album, grows and persuades with greater strength through every partaking of its journey.

The forceful yet gentle caress of Anthem (Ode To The Giddy) comes next, bass and guitar casting a web of resourceful intrigue as keys and vocals colour the sparkling ingenuity with their own provocative wraps. Revealing more of the busy invention and open adventure within the bands songwriting and sound, it merges essences which reminds of bands such as Opeth and KingBathmat to firmly hold attention before making way for the outstanding Volcanic Panic. Raging and mischievously flirting from its first breath, the track is a growling hotbed of sonic unpredictability and spatial majesty, as home careering voraciously through ears as it is melodically flirting with the imagination.

The funky festivity of Nebula continues the new plateau of the album, its infectious devilry amidst melodic escapades providing a richly flavoured and thrilling shuffle of jazz, synth pop, and electro rock. A temptress for feet and emotions, the song lights up the album with ease before the emotive balladry of Amazing Burn and the sinister lures of Hide You offer their different persuasions. The first is a decent enough call for ears and thoughts but it is its successor which brings another peak to the release. Smouldering with every syllable and note, the song makes a restrained start which is soon parading tenacious scenery of sonic exploration and melodic flaming to engulf and engross ears on to the passions. Though not stealing away best track accolades from others, the track is the band’s most intense and inventive exploration providing more evidence of their potential.

Straight away the superb Through The Big Door, Up The Stairs And Out hits ears with its towering inventive and incendiary tapestry of progressive and sonic intrigue locked into mouth-watering drama and imaginative colour. This seriously challenges for top track, its spiralling wind of melodic temptation through a provocatively sculpted maze of energy and enterprise exceptional and mesmeric. The band at the top of the game it is a breath-taking close to the album though it is the highly pleasing jazz funk seeded instrumental Words To That Effect which actually has the last enjoyable say on the album.

For the flaws and concerns Kintsugi raises, it cannot be denied that it is a rather appetising and enjoyable release which is easy to keep coming back to. hAND has the promise and invention to make big musical statements ahead, though they might need to make a tweak or two.

Kintsugi is available digitally and on cd via Brutal Elite with an additional Gold Edition version also available.


RingMaster 03/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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