H. Grimace – I Am Material EP

H. Grimace Promo Photo 2.

Having a rather greedy appetite for discord in our musical preferences ensured that the I Am Material EP from UK band H. Grimace made an immediate good impression with its healthy dosage of that flavoursome ingredient. The added bonus of psyche bred melodies, vocals delivered with a low key energy, and a mosaic of sonic colour and spices only increased the impressive lure of the six-track thrill. It is not without lulls, rather than flaws, in its striking persuasion but ultimately the Londoners newest proposition is one seriously exciting and refreshing proposition.

A band strongly on the lips of the capital’s emergent punk/ DIY since forming in 2011, H. Grimace is the brainchild of Hannah Gledhill and Asher Preston who met whilst working at an East end bakery. Taking a mutual love for 70’s surf / post punk and 90’s dissonant guitar bands into their own ideas, the pair brought the band to life, subsequently increasing its line-up last year with the addition of Syed Shan Pasha and Marcus P. Browne. May 2014 saw the acclaimed release of the band’s self-titled vinyl EP which followed a split release with Joey Fourr the previous year on Bad Paintings. Now the band increase their presence and reputation with I Am Material, a release refusing to be pinned down with tags and revelling in offering something new.

Ears are pricked and lips licked as soon as the opening Caped Crusader like bassline in Imogen nestles provocatively in the imagination. The first track swiftly backs its initial tempting with a reserved jangle of guitar and similarly fuelled vocals. It is a vibrantly dour start which simply captivates body and emotions with sublime ease. Small crescendos of energy and passion erupt throughout the otherwise single minded gait of the song, raising the temperature and adventure of the mouth-watering encounter as potently as the flames of surf rock enterprise which spices up a3483519742_2the infectious incitement. As mentioned earlier, H. Grimace’s sound is hard to pin down but certainly a seventies/eighties post punk/ melodic punk feel is a loud whisper as the track reminds of The Passions and at times The Mo-Dettes.

The outstanding start is surpassed straight away by the following Royal Hush. As its predecessor, the riveting song puts down the groundwork to seducing the passions instantly, this time with rolling almost tribal rhythms courting a melodic coaxing of guitar. The laid back bass mumble adds to the drama whilst the bewitching vocals of Gledhill bring only greater bait for ears and appetite to devour greedily. The Au-Pairs is a comparison the song brings yet as the first, it is spinning a web of ingenious originality and sonic persuasion which flirts with various decades of indie/punk exploration. There is also a melancholic restraint to its energy and emotion but the outstanding song still revels in a tempest of expression and intensity, going through the gears as it brings its brooding rock ‘n’ roll to a fiery climax.

To The Shaggerston cannot quite match its predecessor but still sends a stomp of raw energy and punk seeded devilry through ears. That ever present scent of discord is brighter and louder in the third song, teasing and spicing up the sultry surf rock melodies which whisper and eventually croon evocatively over the senses. More a smoulder than a blaze in comparison to the first two tracks, it immerses the listener in an intoxicating climate of sound and enterprise which is emulated again by the more pop spawned shuffle of Immaterial Girl. A Gang of Four like bass coaxing and post punk guitar endeavour embrace the again gripping vocals, the song breezing along with an inescapable magnetism which simply lights up body and emotions.

I Am Material is brought to a close by firstly the sobering charm of Great Divide and lastly by the thick humidity of Wasted Sun. The first of the two, as the previous track, is a slower persuasion but with a volatile atmosphere and nature which perpetually intrigues and has the imagination bound from its first sonic flame. Like a desert sun, the song is slightly oppressive in its heady climate but simultaneously is a contagious seduction which like earlier tracks makes a lingering conquest. The closing encounter is a boldly simmering slice of discord sculpted balladry with great raw harmonies and melodic jangles. The least successful of the six but still a mesmeric persuasion it beings the EP to a potent conclusion.

There are not many bands emerging these days which truly have bred a new and unique proposal for ears and thoughts to contemplate let alone bask in, but H. Grimace is to the fore of those successful applicants. I Am Material EP is a must for discord embraced sounds and something really rather fresh.

The I Am Material EP is available now via Soft Power Records as a Ltd Ed Cassette (100 Standard Pale Grey / 50 Yellow—tour exclusive) @ http://softpowerrecords.bandcamp.com/album/i-am-material and digitally on iTunes etc.


RingMaster 27/01/2015

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Cry Excess – Ambition Is The Shit

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In your ears, in your face, and for a great many destined to be in the passions, the debut album from Italian metallers Cry Excess is an introduction demanding to be taken notice of. Ambition Is The Shit unleashes ten tracks which furiously roar with adventure and imagination, and all coming with a tapestry of flavours drawn from everything from metalcore to groove metal and industrial to mathcore. Ground-breaking it is arguably not but seriously captivating and contagiously invigorating Ambition Is The Shit is a bellowing success.

Hailing from Turin, the quintet has been turning up the heat at home and building a formidable reputation and following for themselves. Now Cry Excess is ready to infest the world with their ferocious sounds through Ambition Is The Shit and it is hard to see them not continuing their striking ascent, especially as tracks like album opener Ripshit (Hands Up For The Italians) and more so the following The Public Enemy invade ears and attention. The first song rides in on a gentle electronic breeze, little rumbles of tempestuous electro teases littering its haunting slightly portentous air. As soon as a heavy footed swipe of drums and short stubby riffs descends, everything intensifies and crowds around the initial rap metal seeded vocal delivery. The track continues to present an agitated character and presence, seemingly and intriguingly trying to find its feet and full height before its successor takes over. It is an imaginative and fascinating start straight away surpassed as the second song strides in on sonic predation and rhythmic antagonism; both lorded over by caustic vocal squalls. Like The Browning meets Bury Tomorrow clad in the exploration of Destrage, a band which comes to mind most across the whole album, the song blazes with contagion and enthralling enterprise.

Hustler comes next and as the first two opens with calmer waters, its electro shimmer aligned to constricted vocals and a magnetic coaxing. Whispers of nu-metal add to the flavouring as a sample sets the impending scene of hostile passion and savage confrontation. Its brief but potent two minutes makes a thick appetiser for the title track which follows with nostrils flared and riff loaded guns blazing. Keys bring a warm embrace to the turbulence whilst vocals show a great diversity and imagination, they continually one of the big draws of the album. Predominantly though, the song is a voracious beast of sound and intent, harassing and bruising the senses with skilled inventiveness and blustery passion.CRY EXCESS FRONT COVER

Both the melody rich tempest of What Keeps Us Alive and the dance revelry of You Hate Because You Can’t Compete keep things stomping and impressing nicely. The first may have a canvas of sonic and melodic charm but still confronts like a raging predator and protagonist of ears and appetite, revelling in its raw and at times unpolished but persistently virulent creative fervour. Vocals again provide clean and seducing anthemic bait from within the chaotic and delicious bedlam around them whilst the song’s successor saunters in on an electro swagger and proceeds to flirt and rigorously dance with an electronicore tenacity and devilry. There is great diversity to the album even though the maelstrom of sounds often offers a similar surface storm, and this song epitomises the depth as potently and openly as any.

Through the corrosive rabidity of Rebel, Forever and the anthemic march of Unto Death, band and album leave ears and appetite greedy whilst Neither Forgive Nor Forget kicks the thrills up another gear with its heavily shadowed and intimidating senses crowding cloud of sonic and vocal voracity. The rich blend and extremes of guttural roars and melodic coaxing from the band continues to spark within ears, providing a beacon in the tsunami of noise and hostility, as also does the great nintendocore twist just before an even greater and exhaustingly welcome abusing of the senses.

The album closes on the fierce drama and tumultuous intensity of I Never Liked Clowns, a bestial incitement of stabbing riffs and crippling rhythms swinging from stretched vocal exploration and volcanic sonic eruptions. The track sums up the whole of Ambition Is The Shit in many ways, a conquest of ears and passions which is not spinning a web of new invention but creating an irresistible and hellacious devilment to submit to. Expect big things from Cry Excess ahead and even greater furies of highly pleasurable incitements like this.

Ambition Is The Shit is available via Luxor Records from January 27th @ http://www.luxor-records.com/#!store/cfvg


RingMaster 27/01/2015

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Vulturium Memoriae – Nato per ragioni ignote


Dark shadows and melancholic immersions can be quite meditative, certainly in the hands of Vulturium Memoriae. This is exactly what the one man project of Italian musician/composer Mirg reveals with new album Nato per ragioni ignote, which translates as “born for unknown reasons”. Consisting of six simultaneously mesmeric and oppressive landscapes converging into one epic soundscape of emotively intense instrumental exploration, the album is a fascinating and at times breath-taking encounter. Creating a haunting and proposition for ears and thoughts, not forgetting emotions, cast in a weave of sound seeded in dark wave /post black metal ambiences, the release is as intimidating as it is seductive and perpetually a compelling flight for thoughts to ruminate and get lost in.

Each track upon Nato per ragioni ignote is fuelled by repetition and tides of melancholia, yet at no point from opener Dissolvenza della ragione onwards does it become a doom clad drone or lack a light kissed tempering to the brooding darkness explored. The first track looms with an urgency which is never quite repeated throughout the song and release again. It is a hectic sonic and almost bedlamic start which provides the springboard for a slowly turning sonic and emotional contemplation with a just as swiftly emerging nag of heavy restrained beats and smouldering shards of acidic guitar expression that engulfs senses and imagination with equally strong persuasion. Already though there are numerous levels and textures to the piece, a great bass prowl tempering the sharp touch of the guitars but enhancing the heavy intimidating air of the track.

Its sink into cavernous darkness cultured emotions is given a new shade of colour and angst by the similarly languid yet stirring embrace of Onde psichiche di coscienza. For almost twelve minutes the track permeates every thought and emotion with its psyche challenging sonic and rhythmic iteration and for the same time it enthrals and lures the listener into their own cornered off shadows. Sonically lighter in tone but no less a potently simmering trespass, the track bewitches and intrudes before Miraggio attraverso i ricordi steps up with its arguably calmer emotional distress. As in all pieces of music, you feel yourself floating across or falling into the jaws and clutches of places you maybe wish to avoid with rewards which only invigorate and fascinate. Carrying a greater noir clad danger and threat than its predecessors, the track is wonderfully cinematic and gloriously epic in its breath, Mirg creating smog of absorbing invention and emotional provocation over a surprisingly understanding drum machine spawned bait of rhythms.

The album’s title track seduces next, its brief presence, in comparison to other songs, a radiant soar across more gentle and eerily romantic terrains before drifting away into the following and scintillating Grigiore a cielo aperto and its heavier, darker, more unearthly scenery of blackened musings. The most suffocating track on the album, it is equally the most invigorating physically and emotionally, its every imposing twitch and scorching tendril a transfixing narrative to explore and interpret.

The release closes with the morose drift of Lungo l’orizzonte dell’addio, a piece which seemingly floats across the senses but leaves barbed hooks and startling abrasions to linger in ears and thoughts long after its departure. It is an immense end to a ravishing sonic incitement, a release which leaves scars as it ignites every aspect of the listener.

In some ways the album is easier to listen to as individual tracks or in stages but this does lose the towering impact and effect of the encounter, so be brave and let Nato per ragioni ignote take you to places inside even angels fear to tread.

Nato per ragioni ignote is available now via Avantgarde Music digitally and on CD @ http://avantgardemusic.bandcamp.com/album/nato-per-ragioni-ignote


RingMaster 27/01/2015

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Evisorax – Goodbye to the feast…welcome to the famine


If grindcore is the kind of thing which ignites the passions then the bracing winds of Goodbye to the feast…welcome to the famine are sure to inflame the senses. This new sonic assault comes from British trio Evisorax so of course we mean viciously searing torrents of sound in regard to the six-track violation, especially as the line-up of vocalist Simon Wright (also of Krokodil), guitarist Daniel Lynch, and drummer Simon Bishop (Ex-Narcosis) have unleashed their most imposing theatre of violence yet.

The follow-up to 2011 album Isle of Dogs, which in turn succeeded Enclave of 2008, the band’s Scott Hull mastered third album is as blisteringly brutal and hateful as music comes. Evisorax’s furious expulsions of undiluted and math grindcore has already pushed the threesome to the fore of the genre and ‘audio violence’, but now the new ravaging of Goodbye to the feast…Welcome to the Famine takes it all to a new level, as evidenced immediately by the vitriolic tempest of opener Greedy Pig. The track is a tsunami of spite and rhythmic punishment, a ruthless seduction enhanced by the hate spewing raging of Wright amidst a corrosive blitz of caustic riffery and tangy toxic grooving. Barely a minute of rancor, it is straight away matched in voracity and aggression by Blood Fucking Blisters. The second track has real bad blood running through its veins and an addictive nature in its grooving and jabbing beats within the expected and always unpredictable sonic animus which pours from the songwriting and hearts of Evisorax

   The Last Horrendous Concubines provides thirty six seconds of sonic execration next whilst Locust Breeders takes over with a minute of its own similarly impassioned malevolence musically and vocally. The track also finds a swing and contagious grooving to its infestation and scorching of the senses, feeling almost light in comparison to its predecessors and the following End Users (Directors Cut) where the drums, as in the previous song, add an addictive almost anthemic swagger though the likeness ends there as it turns into an invasive jaundice of sonic pestilence and desensitising enterprise.

The album’s pinnacle comes next, So many Fat people during the Famine revealing a magnetic twist in the attack of the release with melodic toxins and a slower groove bound gait. The violence and lyrical/vocal loathing is still a running torrent but Evisorax take it into doomier, sludge kissed scenery with clean vocals and sultry climates. With deranged twists and flirtatious scythes of guitar and short spicy grooves, the track is a bewitching temptation as it takes its pound of flesh from ears and sanity from the psyche.

All the best bits, they left out of your death brings the album to a close, its insatiable anger and technical causticity a fitting and scarring end to a blissful and blistering confrontation. Goodbye to the feast…welcome to the famine is a treat and must for all grindcore extreme punk fans but for the rest…well they best run and hide.

Goodbye to the feast…welcome to the famine is available now via Bones Brigade Records on 12” vinyl @ http://grindshop.bonesbrigaderecords.com/produit.php?ref=BB063&id_rubrique=3 with a T-shirt/cassette bundle available @ http://label2318.bigcartel.com/product/evisorax-goodbye-to-the-feast-welcome-to-the-famine-t-shirt-cassette-poster-bundle


RingMaster 27/01/2015

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We Fight Like Kids -Superficial Behaviour EP


With a large crowd of accomplished and inventive bands fuelling the UK post hardcore scene right now it is hard to stand out from the pack but one band which suggests it has the potential and imagination to do so is Midlands quintet We Fight Like Kids. The band recently released debut EP Superficial Behaviour, a five song stomp of appetite sparking and strongly impressing encounters. It is too early to say that the band has carved its own distinct presence away from the masses just yet but it suggests it is on the cards whilst leaving ears thrilled and interest in the band full.

The first single from the EP, Falconer starts things off, a twist of the radio dial leading the listener into a wind of vocal scowls and potent rhythmic incitement. This comes clad in a sonic colour which is as biting as it is coaxing, riffs and melodies harsh yet welcoming from the guitars of Gianni Basi and Jacob Ford. It is a strong if underwhelming entrance though, something to intrigue if not yet excite. The vocals led by Ant Pain add to the drama, showing themselves in three forms. There is a great clean delivery which continually impresses across the release as it tempers a darker heavier roar which whilst lacking the same vibrant spark in comparison challenges and commands, especially as it lies alongside a stronger and rawer, almost black metal inspired scowling. Who delivers which we cannot yet tell you but they all bring a great drama and diversity to a song which grows stronger and more pleasing over time and a release which as mentioned marks the cards of future attention.

The following Tequila Slammer is an immediately more intensive offering from its first breath, jagged riffs and vocal causticity embracing the again potent clean delivery of the song’s narrative. With also a stronger infectiousness to it, the track is soon enlisting body and imagination in its virulent proposition as the punchy beats of Liam Keeling and dark hearted basslines of Sam Capps show they are no addictive slouches alongside the thick grooves and sharp hooks lighting up the song. Greater and brighter imagination shows itself in the song too, a pleasing twist of Cover-frontpiano led enterprise a great touch before the equally magnetic charms of Select The Ejector take over. Merging emotive balladry with muscular antagonism, the song unveils a little more of the continually broadening sound and songwriting of the band, its ire and melancholic reflection a united portrait of emotion against the similarly blended aggression and seduction of sound. The track does not quite send the passions racing, but as those before, its offering brings thoughts and appetite closer to that destination.

Ice Breakers flirts with radiant keys initially before shrugging off the calmer veil for a Meshuggah seeded voracity and provocation. From here on it is a battlefield of bruising provocation and progressively spiced melodic adventure, the extremes uniting rather than conflicting within the ears. It is a perpetually fascinating proposition never allowing expectations to have their say as it without really stretching post hardcore boundaries gives them a creative going over.

It is fair to say that the EP just gets better with every track, each song leading an ascent to the pinnacle of Superficial Behaviour which is the exceptional Creeper Complex. The song romances ears straight away, luring them in through expressive keys before pulling aside the drapes for a mouth-watering theatre of varied grooves and tangy hooks flirting from a drama of melodic intrigue and gothic inspired devilry. Like a mix of early My Chemical Romance, Only The Quiet Ones, and Bury Tomorrow, the track sculpts its own identity and alone shows the band has the attributes to join the unique cream of post hardcore at some point, though you suspect their evolution of sound will eventually transcend genres anyway.

It is a stunning end to a thoroughly enjoyable and impressive release. Superficial Behaviour provides an introduction impossible to ignore whilst We Fight Like Kids instantly lives up to the buzz already bred locally around them.

The Superficial Behaviour EP is available now as a free download at https://bit.ly/1kLwqtc


RingMaster 27/01/2015

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