Vital Signs – Smoke And Mirrors

 

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A new band but with a potent pedigree and experience bred in the Pennsylvania music scene amongst its members, Vital Signs make an immediate strong and attention grabbing impression with debut EP Smoke And Mirrors. Consisting of five tracks which skilfully croon and roar with a passion and adventure you can only form a healthy appetite for, the release shows there is some vibrant fresh blood stirring within the melodic metalcore scene. It is does not exactly breach the existing boundaries of the genre or startle with something imposingly new yet has an enterprise and tenacity to its songs which demands enjoyment and keen interest in their growth.

Formed in 2014, Vital Signs consists of Alex Runk (ex-An Early Ending), guitarists Alex Bolton (ex-Ace Augustine/ I Am History) and Bryan Merriman, bassist Frankie Donaldson and drummer Patrick Sherman (ex-I Am History). As mentioned it is a line-up rich with experience and it shows in the songwriting and simply mature nature of their first EP and indeed opening song Sound of the End. Its initial melodic atmosphere comes with an immediate drama which builds as the intensity and weight of the song increases. It all leads to a seconds pause before an eruption of fiery riffs aligns to crusading rhythms and a great steely bass sound for a potent enclosing of ears and senses subsequently lit further by the instantly engaging clean vocals. These are courted by a raw growl behind them which steps forward more forcibly as hostile antagonism from the guitars begins standing toe to toe and united with acidic grooves and anthemic persuasion. It is a seriously rousing stomp which is as carnivorous in tone and intent as it is seductive, a tempest of ideation and craft swirling around the listener with viciousness and inventive charm.

The outstanding start is backed powerfully by the EP’s first single Dear Death. The technical qualities of sound and band take the lead as the song bustles with a busy energy before finding occasional relaxation in a just as spicy and intriguing scenery of melody coloured sound. Though for personal tastes it does not quite match up to its predecessor, the track shows all the attributes and imagination which invigorates every song on the release. It is catchy and belligerent in equal measure musically and vocally, offering a web of spite and warm tones from where the attention stealing clean vocals are as gripping as the constant twisting of the track’s musical landscape.

A short piano led instrumental simply called Interlude comes next, though its emotive and finely crafted presence feels as if it is in the wrong place and suffers from an already hungry appetite only wanting more of the ravaging already devoured. That comes with The Chosen which employs similar melodic coaxing from the previous piece within its tempestuous and again furiously magnetic proposal. Essences of bands like Bring Me The Horizon and Miss May I make suggestions but similarly there already feels like there is a twist in the tail of Vital Signs’ sound which promises greater variety pushed adventures ahead. The song continues to bloom with vocal and keys spawned beauty against a staggered tirade of Meshuggah seeded tempestuousness, a blend continuing into the furnace intensity of the EP’s closing title track. For every searing guitar driven intrusion of the senses and swipe of rhythmic malice, there is a radiant melodic licking or vocal harmony caressing the wounds. It embroils ears and thoughts in a final raging and masterful storm ensuring sound and release lingers well after its departure.

A slight lack of originality against the crowd shows there is room to hone and explore their sound more, as well as at times a similarity certainly on the surface between songs. Also at times there is less potency in the raw growls compared to the continually impressive clean delivery, but to be honest these are minor thoughts right now in a rather enjoyable and promising first roar from Vital Signs.

The Smoke and Mirrors EP is available now via Imminence Records @ http://imminencerecords.bandcamp.com/album/smoke-and-mirrors

https://www.facebook.com/USVitalSigns

RingMaster 28/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

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RVNT – Vulnerable

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Already the opening weeks of this New Year has seen some impressive and potential soaked debuts across the metal kingdom and another comes in the tasty shape of Vulnerable from US metalcore protagonists RVNT. Bringing seven tracks in direct and forceful contact with ears and imagination, it is a potent and attention grabbing entrance from the band whose name is pronounced as ‘revenant’. It is an encounter which does wane a little in strength and resourcefulness the deeper into its body you go, from a thumping and exhilarating start employing more formulaic and expectations feeding endeavours as songs show their individual propositions, but even that cannot prevent the release from leaving a lingering and highly agreeable impact.

RVNT was born from the ashes of Virginian metal bands such as Under City Skyline, Still I Rise, and Before Him, and swiftly used their experiences and new musical appetite in creating a sound which was soon stirring up the local scene. Last year the band signed with We Are Triumphant and unleashed a broader nudge in their direction through the single Vain which came out in December. Now their debut album is poised to awaken a whole new spotlight whilst simultaneously showing a richer potential inside them and their ferocious fiery sound, a promise destined to trouble even greater recognition and success ahead it is easy to suspect.

     Proving Ground is a forty second introduction providing an intriguing if not particularly dramatic lead into the release. It does have a certain raw charm and portentous fascination though which ensures ears wait patiently for the following Vain where the rewards are plentiful. The second track initially looms over the senses with controlled but intimidating beats and equally dark hearted riffs, their welcome wrapped in an imposing shadowed ambience which just as eagerly embraces the squalling roar of vocals from Ricky Gillis. A thick tangy groove soon infests the guitar enterprise too as rhythms begin a devilish march on already beleaguered ears. By now the track is a contagious predator, guitarists Cole Sweeney and Ryan Potter creating an enthralling web of aggressive and seductive enterprise which the bass of Matt Madariaga prowls with threatening tones and the swinging swipes of Jose Rodriguez-Qulles bring further intensity to. The mix of varied vocals impact as resourcefully and successfully as the tempestuous sounds around them, guttural growls and slightly lighter caustic tones uniting with impressive cleaner tones enjoyably as they help ignite the slamming stomp of a triumph.

The following Disconnect is similarly compelling and oppressive from its first breath, but again infusing an infectious and anthemic tendency which skilfully ignites and colours the storm. The gallery_23_2_160864track continues to rage, batter, and wind ears and satisfaction around its hostile fingers as again the vocal blend captivates as refreshingly as the rhythmic rumbling and ferocious sonic enterprise coating their lure. A brawling romance, the song leaves ears and appetite a little greedier again before the torrential and bruising raging of Leech takes over. Its theatre of aggression, which brings the track into startling view, relaxes a touch as vocals add their narratives marking the point where the album continues to impress but begins losing some of its striking impact. The song like those before certainly allows no wandering from ears and attention but the unpredictability of its enjoyable presence is less dramatic and lacking real surprises compared to those before.

The same applies to both More Than Words and Circles, though the carnivorous entrance of the first enslaves with consummate ease before boiling up a storm of savage voracity and melodic colouring. As the previous encounter, the track is bursting with climatic and feverish passion amidst an emotional turmoil which translates to the sounds and is emulated by its successor in its own potent design. The first of the two startles and thrills at times, just as the opening pair on the album consistently did, but still lacks their unique spark, though in replacement the suggested potential takes over to excite instead. The second of the two provides another furnace of vocal creativity and fire which only adds to the pleasure found in its cyclonic provocation.

Vulnerable closes with Buried Alive, a tapestry of angst fuelled creative fury veined with melodic heavy metal seeded enterprise and as now expected vocal imagination, the three prong thrust of the attack as impressive as when first heard on the opening song. More melodic metalcore than simply the neat malevolence of the core genre driving the band’s sound, song and album provides an explosive and thrilling first confrontation with RVNT. There is no doubt there is plenty more to come from the band in songwriting and sound as they evolve, a quite exciting prospect thanks to the thoroughly enjoyable abusing of Vulnerable.

Vulnerable is available now via We Are Triumphant Records on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, and more.

https://www.facebook.com/RvntBand

RingMaster 28/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

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Bind Torture Kill – Condamné

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Stalking, violating, and corroding any sense of safety in ears and psyche, Condamné the new album from French metallers Bind Torture Kill (BTK) confirms there is a group of serial sonic predators out there which know how to seduce and abuse with relentless ferocity. The successor to the band’s self-titled EP of 2013; BTK’s debut album creates a pestilential scourge bred from hardcore, death metal, and grindcore. To that though the band loads in grooves and hooks which entice and reassure whilst the rest of their sound is stripping senses bare and flailing emotions. It is a proposition destined to send a great many running but equally incite a new masochistic passion in just as numerous souls.

Formed in 2007, the Lyon hailing BTK emerged with an instantly confrontational sound sculpted from the intent to “practice a darkened, raging, violent music.” The first few years saw instability in the bass department as the band honed and evolved their increasingly distinct and intrusively oppressive sound and presence. The early weeks of 2013 saw the unleashing of the previously mentioned EP, whilst the latter months of that year brought the departure of another bassist from the ranks. From this point deciding to continue as a trio, the founding members of vocalist Olivier Alexandre, guitarist Yann Alexandre, and drummer Benjamin Garçon undertook numerous shows which confirmed the new set-up was just as potent and brutal as ever before settling down to start recording Condamné last March, a self-released fury now setting its rage upon the world.

It opens with Labyrinthe de Mort and instantly a sonic brewed noise is engulfing ears as inciting rhythms gather in the background before bursting through with a tirade of composed but malicious riffs and searing, spicy grooves. Immediately there is contagiousness to the threat and rancor of the track, which rather than tempers the raging violence of the song seems to incite it to greater antagonistic intent. As discovered across the whole of the album, band and songs are also unafraid to juggle and twist things in gait and intensity, never letting the listener off the hook but certainly constantly giving them fresh food for thought and fascinating hostility to brave.Cover Front

It is an impressive start with the squalling ire driven tones of Olivier Alexandre a merciless abrasion within the equally volatile maelstrom of sonic and rhythmic vindictiveness, a tempest matched by the enthralling Bain de Sang. Again the heart of the song is violent but the textures and scenery it employs as inventively gripping and tantalising as it is destructive. There is a striking technical craft and flirtation to the band’s music which is just as potent as the black hearted tsunami driving it, this track superbly epitomising and embracing these strengths as does the following Abattage and even more so the album’s title track straight after that. The first of this pair opens with a brutal smothering of the senses through raw riffs punctuated by cancerous chords and rhythmic swipes before broadening into a seriously testing climate and landscape of creative tenacity. The grindcore bred new Evisorax album offers one of the most cyclonic storms in a long while and Condamné in its own unique design easily stands beside it with songs like this. The second of the pair similarly prowls and courts the senses, inviting and transgressing their defences simultaneously. Vocals and drums are insatiable as they vent their anger soaked angst and sinew moulded antagonism whilst the guitar of Yann Alexandre weaves a tapestry of imaginative enterprise and furious provocation through melodic invention and flesh scorching turbulence.

Bestial is exactly that, as the album an uncompromising primal assault but again binding its bad blood with infectious grooved tendrils of temptation and short hook lined scythes of unpredictable adventure. Ferocious, fast, and at times sonically feral, there is plenty within the outstanding track’s bluster which almost soothes the wounds as they are savagely incurred, a technical almost mathcore lined exploration around tempestuous structures making for riveting enticement.

The closing La Faucheuse takes its own route to capture imagination and emotions. Its haunting melodic start is bound by inescapable hostility but creates a magnetic slip into dark depths and cold caustic ambiences for a compelling and at times almost warm trespass of the listener. It is a fierce and absorbing adventure providing an evocative finale to a richly punishing and exciting release. Vocally maybe there is a wish of slightly more diversity to match the sounds yet they are the core of the animus fuelling songs and release, and effectively project the intent and emotion of the French sung proposals making up the excellent Condamné. It is not a merciful or easy listen but Bind Torture Kill has uncaged one of the most exhaustingly exhilarating sonic ravishments you will come up against this year.

Condamné is available now digitally and on CD @ http://btkmetal.bandcamp.com/album/condamn

https://www.facebook.com/BTK.bind.torture.kill.metal

Grab a free download of the album’s title track below

RingMaster 28/01/2015

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

 

Masters of the Radio – Radio Forever

 

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Fresh from installing a new line-up, UK synth rock band Masters of the Radio release new song Radio Forever, a rather flavoursome taster of the band’s forthcoming EP scheduled for later this year. Taking ears and passions back to an eighties landscape of electro/synth pop yet embracing a modern indie adventure in its magnetic body, the track is sure to get you, if not quite in the Summer mood certainly adding a touch of Spring to your step.

Bred in North England town Widnes and formed in 2008 by vocalist/songwriter Paul Ventux, Masters of the Radio raised a constantly growing and loyal following despite going through several line-up changes over the years. This month saw a new stability come to the band with new members, keyboardist Mr Darklight, bassist Taylor Manwo, and drummer Murphy the Destroyer linking up with Ventux. Refreshed, re-kitted, and with a tantalising sound to match, the quartet is set to make 2015 their year, an aim getting off to a potent start through Radio Forever which is taken from the EP mid-year planned mentioned earlier.

The song from its first breath has ears and imagination engaged through an eager simmer of electro coaxing, a lively bait soon taking crisp rhythms and a great dark lined bassline in tow. The swiftly joining vocals of Ventux similarly charm and invite the listener to embrace the song’s warm dance. As melodies broaden and become more creatively colourful in tandem with the growing infectiousness, especially around the almost mischievous chorus, it is impossible not to think of bands like Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, The The, and Paul Haig; the track seemingly drawing on particular essences of each to colour its melodic and evocative romance.

Radio Forever continues to flirt with and swing along its catchy landscape, every passing second becoming more irresistible to feet and voice, and most of all emotions. It is hard to imagine many not tapping a toe or offering a humming addition to its presence at the very least, and certainly easy to expect that a great many will be queuing up to check out the band’s future offering. We will see you all there.

Radio Forever is available now

https://www.facebook.com/mastersoftheradio

RingMaster 28/01/2015

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