Fight Like Apes – Self Titled

Fight Like Apes Cover _Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

It has been as good as five years since the release of their second album, though there was a rather satisfying EP in between, so it is fair to say that anticipation for Fight Like Apes’ new encounter across the board has been bursting with hungry excitement. It is a wait now relentlessly rewarded by each of the twelve songs making up the self-titled proposition, offerings taking ears and imagination on a unique and rebellious exploit of indie pop devilry. It really only takes one listen to establish the album as a favourite and barely a couple more to suggest it is going to cast as one of the major triumphs of 2015.

Hailing from Dublin and formed in 2006, Fight Like Apes and their synth pop/alternative rock sound has been luring in keen and potent attention ever since the release of the EPs How Am I Supposed to Kill You When You Have All the Guns? and David Carradine Is a Bounty Hunter Whose Robotic Arm Hates Your Crotch in 2007. The following year saw them nominated for two awards at the 2008 Meteor Irish Music Awards, and it has only been a continuing torrent of support and acclaim since, though equally there have been moments to challenge as with any band. Debut album Fight Like Apes and the Mystery of the Golden Medallion that same year poked a keener, broader spotlight, attention emulated and pushed to new heights by second full-length The Body of Christ and the Legs of Tina Turner in 2010. Their sound and songwriting had already found uniqueness in presence and character which has consistently evolved from release to release, song to song at times, and it is again prevalent upon the new offering. The time between albums two and three saw the band dropped by their record label but they decided to go down the crowd funding route with quick success. This meant that it has been a length wait for their new epic of fun but as hinted at by the Whigfield Sextape EP last year; the band’s return has only brought new seductive and vivaciously eccentric pleasures.

Unleashed through Alcopop! Records, the album quickly has ears and imagination immersed in its pop alchemy through I Am Not a Merry Man. A quaint electronic coaxing jabbed by firm beats initially the song is soon sauntering along with a melodic swagger and lusty bassline, and lit up further by the ever bewitching vocals of Mary-Kate “MayKay” Geraghty. Moments of feistier endeavour also clad the constantly alluring stroll, the song an inescapable flirtation for ears and thoughts with the flowing keys and backing vocals of Jamie “Pockets” Fox just as magnetic as the pulsating rhythms and prime melodic roar of MayKay.

The following Crouching Bees from a single crisp rhythmic rap is soon engulfing ears in an elegant weave of melodies carrying a slight Altered Images air and once more badgered by thickly tempting rhythms. Vocally MayKay again is as potent in casting a mellow seduction or an impassioned raucousness, her heightened delivery a fiery incitement to the calmer waters of the keys, though they too at times provide an off kilter element of their own. The infection of sound and imagination of the album is already enslaving the psyche two songs in and only increases its bait through Pop Itch and The Schillaci Sequence. The first of the pair is a more ‘regular’ canter of indie pop design, though as it is Fight Like Apes there is plenty of sparkling vocal adventure and sonic twists whilst the second sways over the senses with melodic eloquence. It too initially seems a more reserved example of the band’s invention and creative exploration but with an agitated rhythmic shuffle and Devo-esque electro psychosis it soon puts expectations straight.

Fight Like Apes _Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review Both songs keep enjoyment keen and appetite greedy, though everything is soon eclipsed by the brilliant Didya. Easily our favourite proposition on the album, maybe from the band full stop, the song ambles in on a melodic hook which is Weezer like. That alone has lips licked but it is once Pockets takes the vocal lead with a punkish anxiety to his tone that things erupt into genius. The throaty bass and wilder tempered beats are belligerent whilst the voice of MayKay similarly has a challenging edge to it, the blend a spellbinding incitement though it is the vocal bedlam which follows that has these ears and passions are enslaved. It is like a warped mix of The Dancing Did and The Ting Tings, pure creative mania and manna, setting up the listener for a blaze of a finale.

Numbnuts calms things down a touch next, its persuasive croon persistently littered with stirring vocal snaps and musical twists on the way to creating an increasingly fiery climax whilst its successor Pretty Keen on Centrefolds has ears captivated with an eighties synth pop bubbling that nudges thoughts of Blancmange and Soft Cell. Of course things are never that simple, punchy and at times bedlamic beats adding a drama to match that of the vocals whilst keys whip up a contagious tempting for the dance-floor.

Like a mix of Morningwood and Yeah Yeah Yeahs but all Fight Like Apes, The Hunk and The Funplace sculpts another major pinnacle for the album. Rhythmically anthemic and imposing, melodically spicy and slightly nostalgic, the song easily has ears engrossed but it is the roaring chorus which takes a great song to the plateau of brilliance. It is pop at its most dynamic, provocative, and irresistible.

There is no let-up of the thrills and creative spills as firstly I Don’t Want to Have to Mate with You swirls around ears and leads expectations on a merry dance. It is a lively breeze of fascinating textures and rousing calm providing a spellbinding theatre of sound and voice, emulated in its own way by Baywatch Nights with its even slower smoulder, though again there is a snarl to vocal moments, spicy intrigue to keys, and dark shadows to surrounding scenery. Both tracks make riveting listening, a norm across the album to be fair and continued in the excellent Maevis Beacon: Annihilation, a song with more than a whisper of Young Marble Giants to it especially in its opening minute or so. All tracks make a quick and thick first impression but some reveal even more to their depths and beauty over time with this a prime example.

The mesmeric seducing of Carousel brings the release to an emotive and reflective close, and a dramatic one as epic rhythms and brooding melodies rise as the song progresses. Folkish theatre and heavy tribal rhythms break free too in the scintillating end to a sensational encounter. It may have been a while in the making and coming but Fight Like Apes has spent that time crafting their most vigorously inventive and exciting sound yet. This is a must have for all experimental and rousing pop enthusiasts, actually just every pop fan out there.

Fight Like Apes is available via Alcopop! Records from 18th May @ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/fight-like-apes/id981566460

https://www.facebook.com/fightlikeapes

RingMaster 08/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

Flyying Colours – ROYGBIV EP

Flyying Colours_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

Like a favourite candy, the ROYGBIV EP from Australian shoegaze popsters Flyying Colours, is richly flavoursome, addictively captivating, and impossible not to treat oneself to another portion of. It is a delicious slice of aural contagion wrapped in inescapable melodic seduction, and one addiction it will always be ok to indulge in.

Hailing from Melbourne and formed in 2011, Flyying Colours cite My Bloody Valentine and Fleetwood Mac as influences to their own sonic explorations and with the former an immediate spicing and the latter becoming more apparent over listens, they make a healthy spicing to something individual to the band. Similarly the compelling beauty of a Lush and the psych pop seducing of House Of love also nudge comparisons yet there is a bolder, almost bruising texture to the Flyying Colours sound which adds stronger uniqueness to the creative theatre of songs and EP. 2013 saw the release of their self-titled debut EP, a full introduction to their attention grabbing, raw beauty clad sound which came after the first teaser of the single wavygravy. Its qualities and lures are now explored with new intensity and adventure through ROYGBIV, a success with the potential of awakening a really broad spotlight upon their presence.

Flyying Colours EP_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review     Single songs and the EP as a whole, are as rich in aural colour as its title suggests, but an evolving kaleidoscope of sound rather than a structure of individually layered hues just lying against each other. It all has a changeable and transfixing quality which starts with I Don’t Want To Let You Down. A sonic jangle works on the senses initially with its bait quickly joined by the thick beats of drummer Andy Lloyd Russell. The persuasion of guitar expands the moment the two meet and collude in awakening imagination and appetite, a sonic smoulder with a lively underbelly casting its spell on ears as the equally magnetic vocals of guitarist Brodie J Brümmer caress. The song continues to stroll with warm intent, getting feisty at times especially in a vivacious chorus which sees second guitarist Gemma O’Connor add her siren-esque tones to the mix. The bass of Melanie Barbaro is arguably the most laid back thing on the increasingly fiery encounter, yet her strings only add thick seduction through their thickly magnetic shadows within the blaze of the song.

It is a potent and infection clad track quickly backed and surpassed by the voracious shimmer of Running Late. Guitars jangle and dance in ears, offering a feel of British eighties indie pop a la Orange Juice and Josef K, whilst both vocalists twin up their mellow tempting to stroke ears. There is an unmissable sparking between textures in the song, igniting the thick sonic haze of the encounter further and indeed a sway of bodies and movement of feet and emotions before it.

The increasingly impressive adventure and ascent of the release continues with Not Today, and straight away the song has ears and thoughts spellbound as an opening melodic mist is pierced by one invigorating and tantalising bassline. Its groove is matched by those of the guitars and also in the more low key post punk vocal delivery of Brümmer. That post punk essence is throughout the EP but especially here makes the most delicious lure, suggesting that if Joy Division had gone funky with their sound it would have been something akin to this hex of contagion. Spicy hooks and a rhythmic swagger relentlessly feed a quickly hungry appetite and impassioned lust for the incitement and it is no surprise the song is the lead invitation to the EP, and indeed a favourite across the band’s recent UK tour with Pinkshinyultrablast.

In The End emerges from the closing strains of the triumph, swiftly laying down its own virulent persuasion though reining in the dramatic urgency of its predecessor just a touch as it wraps ears in a thicker smooch. Like the last track though, it barely takes a minute before full involvement of the listener is enticed, the still tenacious energy of the song inescapable incitement to the body as feet tap rigorously and hips swerve to the flow of the proposal.

Final track Leaks almost bludgeons its way into view in comparison to other tracks, the muscular snarl of bass and matching jabbing beats a heavily boisterous lure courting a caustic yet bewitching sonic mesh of sound from the guitars, it all coloured again by the immersive vocals. It is a fiery end to the release, and another irresistible song showing, as each proposition within ROYGBIV, another twist to the sound and invention of the band.

Flyying Colours is cast as shoegaze but their outstanding EP proves that there is much more to their voraciously bubbling shimmer of sound, plenty to appeal to fans of melodic and psychedelic rock as well as those of psych and lo-fi pop.

The ROYGBIV EP is available via Club ac30 in the UK @ http://store.clubac30.com/products/548073-flyying-colours-roygbiv-ep and in the US on Shelflife @ http://www.shelflife.com/catalogue/LIFE126.html now!

https://www.facebook.com/flyyingcolours   http://www.flyyingcolours.com/

RingMaster 18/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

 

The Sun Explodes – The Calm, The Storm

The Sun Explodes_ Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

2011 debut album Emergence was where UK progressive rock band The Sun Explodes first caught ears and attention, and not just lured their focus but had then gripped. It was a potential soaked and creatively masterful introduction with a few lesser issues which only added to the promise and anticipation of greater things to come. Its successor We Build Mountains two years later realised those hopes and expectations whilst setting down new adventures to greedily devour. The exceptional release one of the most exciting offerings of that year, so much so that you had to wonder if this was to be as good as it gets for the band and whether what came next could live up to such heights. Well, The Calm, The Storm certainly rivals its predecessor, eclipses it at times, whilst suggesting there is still more striking exploits to come from the band.

Carlisle based The Sun Explodes has explored a ‘mellower’ landscape with The Calm, The Storm, further blossoming the melodically colourful side of their sound. This also applies to the vocals though that is not to say that the bulging rhythms and aggressive almost predatory creative drama fuelling previous releases are not as pungent as ever, just that the focus is centred on another side of their invention. Technically and texturally, the release is as dynamic and unpredictable as ever, their fascinating and relentlessly busy sound and enterprise again best and only fully explored over numerous listens.

TCTS Artwork_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review   It all starts with The Calm, and a gentle melodic caress of guitar. The reflective shimmer of their coaxing is quickly reinforced by the similarly relaxed tones of vocalist Dave Maclachlan, ears and thoughts immersed in an evocative lure and atmosphere. This continues to seduce, drawing the imagination deeper into its embrace before erupting into a more intensive wind of rhythmic predation and harmonic elegance. There is a new raw edge to the track, a rugged tempestuous air taking over though the poetic melodic craft of earlier continues to entwine and incite from within. It is a transfixing start to the EP which leads straight into the just as powerful and dramatic majesty of The Unnatural. The second song instantly reveals a more virulent contagion and energy to its body, riffs and hooks from the guitars of Alex Adamson and Alex Harris immediately enticing and thrilling ears. A slip into calmer, magnetic waters comes with the entrance of Maclachlan’s voice and song narrative, though the bass of Mike Walker and the punchy beats of drummer Jamie Harris line and skirt it all with darker shadows, a kind of menace which become more pronounced as the song flows into heavier, ravenous scenery. It is a continually changing passage of course, peace and volatile energies switching and aligning across the enthralling encounter as the guitars, also with continual unpredictability, prowl and ignite the air.

As openly as the band’s songwriting and sound has evolved and become even more involved, so the individual skills and maturity of each band member seems to have grown too. The second track is a web of striking exploits in all areas and straight away emulated in The Grand Design. It also opens up its incitement with a swagger and dynamic energy before settling into a more evenly offered temptation, though it is fair to say that within seconds the track reveals a fierce tapestry of flavours and endeavour which is as jazzy as it is predatory and as melodically enthralling as it is rhythmically intimidating. Like on hot coals, rhythms are a boisterous and agitated shuffle across the song whilst harmonies bring a warm seducing caress, whilst between them guitars and keys cast a vivid and tenacious sonic picture narrated by the excellent tones of Maclachlan. To be honest it is hard to portray everything going on within songs, the fullness of the dynamics and torrent of styles and enterprise lighting ears, so be prepared to hear and discover much more when listening to the release yourselves.

I Walk Alone takes the listener on a less agitated flight initially but creative turbulence is lying in wait and soon sparking appetite and greater enjoyment as the song twists and turns through its own individual maelstrom, though it is more a kaleidoscope of imagination and inventive resourcefulness then anything chaotic. This and the closing Storm Of Light are arguably the least capricious tracks on the release, but each is still a varying tapestry of mercurial enterprise. The final song is a captivating union of piano and vocals, a duet of beauty matched by the soaring harmonies around them. There is grace and emotional energy to the proposition which only strengthens as the track subsequently expels a blaze of guitar boiled intensity and intensive rhythms.

A stirring end to another masterful creative emprise from The Sun Explodes, we can only repeat the last words in our review of previous album We Build Mountains two years ago. The Sun Explodes stand as one of the most important bands in UK rock, just that after The Calm, The Storm they are even more essential for all progressive rock fans to investigate.

The Calm, The Storm EP is available from May 18th @ http://thesunexplodes.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/thesunexplodes

RingMaster 18/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net