Cold Snap – World War 3

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It roars, it bellows, and it rages with all the spite found in a pit of venomous snakes, but most of all World War 3 provides a seriously mouth-watering treat to open up 2015’s metal offerings in blistering style. The explosive confrontation of Croatian band Cold Snap, the album is an imagination sparking tempest of groove metal infused with a very healthy dose of nu-metal and various other spicy strains of extreme provocations. It comes with slithers of familiar and recognisable moments and sounds which only add to the drama and pleasure found in its maelstrom of inventive and adventurous enterprise. If you are looking for your first bold purchase of 2015, then World War 3 is a major contender which will not disappoint.

Coming out of Varazdin, Cold Snap formed in 2003 and was quickly into their stride with increasingly impressing live shows which subsequently saw them play with the likes of Disturbed, Suicide Silence, Pro-Pain, Dead By April, Ektomorf and Unearth as well as playing festivals such as Metal Camp, Metal Fest, and Wacken Open Air. There has also been well-received releases increasingly pushing the band’s presence into broader attention, debut EP Mea Culpa of 3005 the forerunner of their albums Empty Promises and Perfection of 2008 and 2010 respectively. Following the departure of guitarist Vlado Soldatek last October, the foursome of vocalist Jan Kerekes, guitarist Leo Friscic, bassist Zoran Ernoic, and drummer Denis Roskaric has driven on with the release of the Tue Madsen produced World War 3 through Eclipse Records. It is an attention grabber from start to finish with the weaponry and ingenuity to awaken the attention and passions of metal fans around the world.

From the first breath of Straight to Hell, song and band are rampaging through ears and brewing up a keen appetite for what is on offer. Rhythms barge and riffs snarl over the senses, only stepping back slightly as the impressive vocals of Kerekes vent with narrative and eventful ferocity. Guitars and drums are soon back to throwing their muscles around though as the song flirts with essences of Mudvayne and Slipknot embroiled with those of American Head Charge. It is a formidable and addictively flavoursome mix given originality by the unpredictable invention and enterprise of Cold Snap. Raging and accusing as it opens up the album’s premise of looking at the ‘end of days’ we live in through every form of our lives, the song is a tremendous start swiftly emulated by the psyche revelry of Carnival. Exploring a (Hed) PE like fusion of groove and punk rap, the song smoulders with intimidating character, expelling furies of waspish grooves and sonic predation. It is a stunning encounter, stalking ears and thoughts with compelling craft and threatening intensity under the rhythmic slavery of Ernoic and Roskaric.

Friscic’s guitar is equally imposing and sonically inflammatory but even more skilled and adventurous within the following Rise Again and its Disturbed meets One Minute Silence stampede CLDS - 9038 cover - 1500of sound and enterprise. As in most songs, every passage and indeed moment comes with a subsequent twist in the flow and imagination of the incitement, here a sultry and tangy croon of guitar the respite in the tempestuous majesty of the aural protest.

The brief and warped rabidity of Unleash Me comes next to intrigue and excite as it leads the listener into the destructive heart of Monster, the unveiling of the danger portentously suggested in the first of the pair. The second track sways and challenges like a heady mix of Skindred, Devildriver, and Limp Bizkit, filtering their strengths into another uniquely gripping and seriously contagious storm of aggression and sound. Every second and aspect of the song ravages and seduces ears; stirring up even greedier appetite for the album, though that is something which applies to every track it is fair to say.

The much calmer atmosphere and thick provocative depths of Dead Guardian continues the diverse nature of the album, its sublime dark caress a gentle coaxing which increases in intensity and anger as the song proceeds to release its controlled but bile loaded roar. It relaxes again but only to start the compelling process all over again. With Kerekes increasingly impressive and extending the variety and adventure of his vocals, the track is a brew of enthralling emotions and antagonism leaving ears and thoughts engrossed and easy prey for the sensational brawl of Doomsday. Opening in a similar vein to how the previous song crooned the senses, it is soon a boiling vat of emotional hostility and raging sounds but psychotic enough to fluidly drop into deranged calm before a great bedlamic mix of various caustic styles. Another major highlight of the album it is matched by the might of Silent Killer, but only after the bewitching cyber haunting of instrumental Freedom has its moment to prey on the psyche and challenge the imagination. Silent Killer opens with riveting guitar bait before launching a Mudvayne seeded challenge vocally and sonically which in turn courts a rhythmic threat and anthemic tenacity spiced with Korn colouring. Again it has to be stated that for all the comparisons what emerges is something fresh, adventurous, and virulently infectious.

The final trio of songs all add to the increasingly impressive stature of the album, Court is Corrupted stepping up first with its venomously pungent bluster and creative rabidity. It is a growling provocateur, intent on enslaving the listener with bruising and vicious craft, something it definitely has no problem succeeding with. Chameleon seizes its chance next to rage across senses already softened elsewhere on the album. Juggling rhythms and rancorous vocals under a mesmeric sonic climate, it is soon throwing off its shackles to stomp belligerently and contagiously whilst establishing another pinnacle in the mountainous range of songs.

The closing My Emptiness unveils a final new twist in the album, its Palms whispered peace the calm before the storm of Machine Head hostility tempered by melodic metal tenacity. The song continues to shift and evolve across its eight minutes leaving ears blissful and thoughts captivated.

Wrapped in just as impressive artwork, World War 3 is a real treat from a band looking ready to stand boldly and confidently in the biggest spotlight of global metal.

World War 3 is available now via Eclipse Records @ http://www.eclipserecords.biz/brands/Cold-Snap.html

http://www.cold-snap.com/

RingMaster 13/01/2015

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Filter Distortion – Transition

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It seems that the lure of eighties electro and synth pop will never diminish as old bands try to relive their past successes and new bands explore the spices of that decade in their own ideation. UK electro band Filter Distortion is a proposition which wears the inspiration of that era boldly on their creative sleeve, yet twists and transforms it into something distinctly fresh and modern. The proof is in new album Transition, a transfixing collection of virulent electro sculpted songs which ignite ears with infectious imagination and provides the first pop classic of 2015.

The Liverpool quartet of Ian Hall, Wesley Hughes, Phil Morton, and Phil Gofton spent the last year creating and recording Transition before working with engineer and producer Daniel Woodward on its mastering. The result is an encounter which croons and seduces the senses as only eighties electronic music can but with a hungry invention and enterprise bred by electro pop invention and evolution of today. From opening track Black and White, band and album has senses and emotions bound in melodic enterprise and magnetic sounds. Bookended by the revving of a motorbike, for a reason more obvious to the band, the song swiftly blossoms into an Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark like enchantment. Outstanding vocals are soon caressing ears within a weave of synth cast elegance, casting their temptation throughout as keys provide a spatial romance for the senses. It is an evocative embrace aligned to darker shadows which only add depth and intrigue to the rich charm and contagion of the song.

The outstanding start is swiftly matched by the vibrant and slightly livelier Pressure, though again it is a reserved stroll of a track with swarthy bass and rhythmic tones courting an evocative synth exploration. Finding a more Depeche Mode like flavouring to its enthralling recipe of craft and electronic persuasion, the track wraps inescapable and resourceful temptation around ears. That leads to an already hungry appetite for the release to get greedier and thoughts keen to dig deeper into the sound of Filter Distortion, something rewarded straight away by the addictive catchiness of Resonator Express and the emotive balladry of Midnight Drive. The third song on the release explores a different eighties seeded avenue as darkly lit strains of keys collude with melodic radiance, the union a riveting dance on ears whilst its successor produces a familiar tempting infused and invigorated with the lure of great vocals and tangy melodies. Thoughts of Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys return but equally those of The Correspondents as the croon and boom of the song provides another irresistible enticement.

     Frequency Modulation hits the dance-floor next, its bubbly electro canvas potent bait for feet whilst keys and melodies flirt salaciously as vocal samples inform and spark thoughts. Think Picture 28Thomas Dolby does EBM but turned inside out by the invention of Filter Distortion and you get a hint of the inventive and composed stomp lighting up the air before the masterful hug of new single Neon Nights and subsequently previous single Cameras in the Dark appear. The first of the two is pure contagion, chorus and hooks gripping drama revelling in the variety of the vocals and the sultry breath of the sounds around them. It is a captivating doorway into the album and the band’s resourceful sound matched by the second of the two tracks. Featuring guest vocalist Cheryl Anna, the song has a more indie feel with effect lined vocals and a pungent bass tone revealing new veins of the great diversity and exploration running through the band’s songwriting.

When the Lights Go Out provides a darker soulful offering next and though the song misses igniting the passions as successfully as earlier songs, it is an engrossing tune to capture the imagination before Lost Boys gives that OMD inspiration another airing. The track is glorious, every vocal and musical note an epidemic of insatiable persuasion. It is fair to say that there are only highlights on the album but some songs stand slightly above others and the album’s penultimate proposition has one of the loftiest views.

The closing Game Over ensures the album ends on a good and ear catching footing but with its lack of real vocals and unremarkable instrumental premise, it is the least favourite track upon Transition and the only time you almost hanker for another of the album’s treasures instead.

Filter Distortion is quite simply a band for electronic pop fans of all decades. Their sound bridges eras but develops its own personality and uniqueness in doing so, whilst in Transition, the band has as suggested offered the year its first essential pop triumph.

Transition is available now as a digital download and limited edition vinyl @ http://filterdistortion.bandcamp.com/

http://www.filterdistortion.co.uk/

RingMaster 13/01/2015

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Convent Guilt – Guns for Hire

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Described as ‘Heavy Metal Warriors’ yet with a sound at times as punkish as it is metal, Australian band Convent Guilt unleash their debut album on Shadow Kingdom Records this month. Consisting of eight tracks of highly agreeable persuasion, Guns For Hire is a potent introduction to the Sydney quartet; not an encounter to cause major ripples but a promise ridden proposition providing an enjoyable stomp to get the teeth into.

   Guns for Hire makes a solid start though the first two tracks only warm the appetite and emotions with their decent if underwhelming presence. Opener Angels in Black Leather initially lures attention through a great dark bassline within a strain of juicy riffs. The track is soon expanding its persuasion with heavy metal enterprise and a punchy rhythmic enticement but it also lacks the spark its start hints at, especially when the vocals of bassist Iron Belshaw enter the mix. Technically the track is potent and a solo impressively flavours the offering, but from voice to sound it avoids truly exciting ears and thoughts. The following Don’t Close Your Eyes is similar, the healthy web of enterprise cast by guitarists Dario Lastro and Matty making an accomplished and colourful temptation against the firm swings of drummer Brent. Yet there is an unsurprising and unadventurous feel to the Maiden-esque song which prevents it finding the power you sense is lying at its heart. Both songs we know are favourites amongst a great many so it is more a personal taste thing but it is when third track Perverse Altar steps forward that for us band and album comes alive.

The track opens on a firm ridge of alluring riffs which makes an edgy canvas for the swiftly joining and fiery solo. It is a captivating start which finds another edge and intensity once the much a0046099024_2more impressing vocals of Belshaw stamp their authority on the song. He is never a threatening presence, but with the punk tone which lends its temptation to his delivery and the music itself coming through, the track whilst still firmly seeded in a classic metal spawning, reveals a compelling punk ‘n’ roll character.

That new adventurous tenacity continues its appearance across the rest of Guns For Hire, Convent Guilt aligning a Celtic folk whisper to the intrigue soaked They Took Her Away. Its initial balladry is soon encased in a muscular cage of heavy rhythmic jabs and a similarly forceful bassline whilst the guitars snarl with riffs and seduce through spicy melodic expression almost simultaneously. The song is outstanding, a strong glimpse at the variety in songwriting and sound certainly within the band and an imagination not as forceful on other tracks.

Both the aggressive roars of the album’s title track and Desert Brat keep ears and appetite eagerly keen, the first another punk urged slice of raw heavy metal blessed with a tasty bass tone from Belshaw. His vocals also find a punk breeding, excelling within the causticity of the sounds around him. By now the album’s songs are as much punk as heavy metal and certainly the better for it; the latter style providing strong and tempting colour to the rawer attitude of the songs as evidenced by its excellent successor. That bass of Belshaw persistently prowls with compelling tempting, his riff again irresistible and the spring board for antagonistic riffs and magnetic enterprise from the guitars. Like The Damned meets Motorhead, and Judas Priest, the track provides a strong and resourceful mark in the persuasion of the album.

Convict at Arms does not quite match up to the strength of the previous pair of songs but is soon an anthemic slab of pleasing metal catching feet and neck muscles up in its enticement before making way for the closing sonic carnage of Stockade. Once more metal and punk collide in a bust up of sonic dust and rhythmic confrontation, and again a thoroughly enjoyable encounter is bred. It is a riotous and infectious end to an album deserving keen attention.

As suggested Guns For Hire will not send shockwaves across the metal world but it will breed, as for us, a strong interest and anticipation for the band’s next move. Something coming with a rich dose of punk to its metal we hope.

Guns for Hire is available now via Shadow Kingdom Records @ http://shadowkingdomrecords.bandcamp.com/album/guns-for-hire

https://www.facebook.com/ConventGuilt/

RingMaster 13/01/2015

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Synodik – A Matter Of Perception

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It may only be three tracks, but by the close of A Matter Of Perception, the transfixing new release from Italian quartet Synodik, you feel like you have undertaken a journey of epic and thought provoking proportions. Merging progressive and atmospheric death metal, band and release is a sonic contemplation which immerses the senses in a compelling exploration. The successor to Sequences for a New Matrix, the band’s 2012 debut album, A Matter Of Perception is a challenging and riveting flight of discovery.

Genoa bred Synodik formed around five years ago initially under the name Asylum, and soon released the Drown In Pain EP. Live shows with bands such as Neaera, Sadist, Illogicist, Cadaveric Crematorium, Ade, Lifend, and Sideblast followed before the acclaimed Sequences For A New Matrix set down a potent marker for the band. Last year saw them sign with Imminence Records and begin the creation of A Matter of Perception, a trio of tracks which provide a new chapter in the creativity of the band; something explained further by guitarist Leandro Scotto who commented “We are using the EP to mark a new era for the band after two years have passed since the release of out self-produced full length. The concept behind the music arises from the love and enthusiasm for the contemplation of the universe and its arcane structures and paradoxes, and this concept is a true passion that really inspired the music.

The EP opens with Projections From the Edge, an imagination sparking instrumental lasting barely a minute but providing a soaring ascent of synths and melodies casting a celestial IR028grandeur. Its warmth and invitation is swiftly tossed into a maelstrom of vicious rhythmic incitement, vocal predation, and raw sonic aggression as When the Parallels Fall erupts upon the senses. Vocalist Matteo Campanini is an instant violation, an impressive scourge of vocal spite which antagonises as potently as it successfully lures thoughts and attention into the brewing tempest of invention and cosmic turbulence. With the drums of Edoardo Delucchi a persistent torrent of craft and aggression alongside the throaty bass enticing of  Jacopo Rossi (Antropofagus, Dark Lunacy) , the track accelerates into a bedlamic yet fluid and superbly sculpted storm. Scotto constantly evolves his creative narrative of keys and guitars across the ever shifting soundscape, stirring up a fury of sonic bluster as skilful as his melodic invention. The track is nothing less than unpredictable and rigorously testing, but with a multitude of excursions needed to explore all its depths and cavernous creative bodies, it is a constant reward just as the following and equally intensive The Perceived Wisdom.

The final track immediately sculpts its own cascade of inhospitable rhythms amidst a voracious climate as a tide of riff causticity roar alongside a radiant glow of clean vocals. Fury and beauty is again a raging and united front in ears, the charm and elegance of keys and voice a leading protagonist within the brawling tempest. As with its predecessor, the listener is flung and stretched from pillar to post, exhausted and violated with extreme currents of metal and intensity yet caressed by a celestial melodic balm and the increasingly gripping creative drama the song, and indeed EP conjures.

We can throw comparisons to band such as Opeth, Meshuggah, Abraham, and Black Crown Initiate to give an idea of the might and thickly flavoursome imagination of A Matter Of Perception, but it and Synodik have honed their cyclonic sound and enterprise into something uniquely in its own spotlight. This is a sonic ravaging that all extreme and progressive metal fans should embrace.

A Matter Of Perception is available via Imminence Records from January 13th @ http://imminencerecords.bandcamp.com/album/a-matter-of-perception

https://www.facebook.com/SYNODIK

RingMaster 13/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

http://www.thereputationlabel.today