Between the Buried and Me – Coma Ecliptic

Pic by Justin Reich

Pic by Justin Reich

 

It is tempting to call the Between the Buried and Me music a kaleidoscope of sonic and inventive hues yet that suggests a randomness which certainly does not apply to their persistently compelling and dramatic explorations. In saying that though, there is an organic unpredictability which seemingly evolves on its own so that at times you wonder if the band knows what is to emerge any more than the listener. And so it is with their seventh album Coma Ecliptic, a series of gloriously imaginative plains of roaming sounds and immersive textures which whether a BTBAM fan or not is seriously compelling, that together create an epic emprise of aural fascination which is either creative ingenuity or insanity.

It is easy to see Coma Ecliptic splitting opinions though hard to imagine many dismissing its technically immense, musically explosive, and rivetingly captivating journey out of hand. Equally the reference to it being like a rock opera does it no favours, certainly with those like us instantly cringing at the thought and term, but assumptions should be cast aside as, even though there are indeed moments of indulgences and flamboyant enterprise, the concept album is bred from the same template of musical and lyrical probing that made previous release The Parallax II: Future Sequence so bewitching and thrilling. It is a whole new beast of course bred from the similar seeding which unites all the band’s releases, but BTBAM doing what they do best, tearing up their own rulebook with zeal and tenacity.

Lyrically Coma Ecliptic follows a single protagonist who stuck in a coma travels through his past lives, each track an individual episode set in “a modern day, sort of The Twilight Zone-esque” world. In each place he can choose to stay or move on to search for a better place, ultimately being met with the ultimate question life or death. The rest is for you to find out but in true BTBAM fashion, the lyrical side of the album is as involved and time consuming to reap its full rewards as the music. There are a few things to pull Coma Ecliptic up on, if you wish to be over analytical and demanding, but like the best sci-fi/fantasy movie, run with its liberties and proposition rounding flaws, and unbridled pleasure through full-blooded adventure are the rich prize.

Cover_RingMaster Review     Opener Node cups ears in a gentle yet emotive touch of keys, Tommy Rogers’ fingers and voice swiftly stroking ears and imagination even before melodies broaden and their elegance mesmerises. The melancholic air of the song has its own ethereal light and hope, album and band immersing the listener into the realm of album and story with sublime ease, even adding Queen-esque flames of epic tones and sonic grandeur to striking effect. It is a potently enticing start which slips into the theatrical and magnetic embrace of The Coma Machine. Many have compared the album and some of its textures and flavours to bands like Dream Theater yet aside from the unavoidable uniqueness of BTBAM, here and often across the album Australian progressive metallers Voyager nudge thoughts. The track ebbs and flow in energy and rousing intensity as it explores its and the story’s depths, and is just as enthralling as it writhes with majestic imagination, whether in a gentle hug of a croon or roaring with aggression and passion.

Dim Ignition emerges from an electro bubble next, synths a lively and nagging simmer within drummer Blake Richardson’s increasingly intimidating rhythms. The song flows into the immediately darker hued Famine Wolf, portentous and ever gripping bass tempting from Dan Briggs alongside just as shadowed keys, their haunting smothering consuming the senses for the ever spellbinding craft and invention of guitarists Paul Waggoner and Dustie Waring to exploit and shape further. The track’s early predator like union grows from one relatively inviting premise to a volatile incitement, with Rogers vocally entwining his superb clean and just as impacting raw metalcore seeded deliveries to match the sounds. The track is thoroughly absorbing, even making its less than seamless slip into a jazzy, psych rock like twist work perfectly and never relenting in making every minute unique from another.

As outstanding as it is though, King Redeem / Queen Serene steals the show, growing from the departing breath of its predecessor into a tempest of pop, funk, melodic revelry, and ravenous metal ferocity; every aspect fuelled by a contagiousness which simply intensifies with every elevation of aggression and invention. Imagine spilling the essences of Periphery, Society 1, and Cardiacs into the BTBAM mix and you get something close to this exhilarating encounter.

Both the imposing Turn on the Darkness and fascinating The Ectopic Stroll keep the fires of serious enjoyment burning, the first at times bordering on the bestial as its landscape savages as siren like seduction joins in equal creative measure. Its successor explores a dance seeded gait and scenery, piano keys a punchy spark to the tenaciously evolving avant-garde landscape, and both songs, but especially the second, tempestuous weaves of expansive flavours, styles, and bold intent sculpted by musicians openly at the top of their game and imagination.

     Rapid Calm brings a spatial yet melodically and emotionally intimate proposal forward next with mellow vocals, harmonies, and keys the warm serenade to the carnivorous walls and depths soaked in challenging intensity lurking and eventually exploding from deep within. Bewitching hardly does the song justice but that is what it is as it wraps its mesmeric and often rabid charms around ears and thoughts. Coma Ecliptic is undoubtedly an album which challenges and involves both aspects with every second, it shown again with Memory Palace and after that Option Oblivion. The first of the pair is soaked in blues and funk rock resourcefulness, a folkish festivity also getting in on the persuasion as the song traverses through ten minutes of instinctive and virulent creative alchemy whilst the second is like looking into a fire, every flame of sound distinct to another yet perfectly aligned in one senses sizzling incitement.

Coma Ecliptic is completed by the emotionally rousing Life in Velvet, another fusing intimacy with grander winds to fine effect. The intoxicating Jamie King produced album leaves the richest hunger to hear and learn more, which is lucky as like their other encounters, it is a proposition which needs numerous plays to really get into its constantly revolving corners and levels, our words above barely scratching its surface let alone depths to be truthful.

The best album from Between the Buried and Me to date?…Well it has to be seriously considered and argued over but there is no denying this is another major success and thrill from the band which their fans will get lustful over and others will at least offer a thick complimentary smile or nod.

Coma Ecliptic is available now on Metal Blade Records @ http://www.metalblade.com/btbam/

http://www.betweentheburiedandme.com/   https://www.facebook.com/BTBAMofficial

RingMaster 14/07/2015

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

 

Radiodrone-The Truth Syndicate Diaries

Radiodrone_RingMaster Review

They have a sound which more than backs up the punch and potency of their lyrical confrontation on the world today, and now US rockers Radiodrone have an album to really stir up attention. The Orange County quartet pulls no blows when it comes to unleashing their take on the social and political ills contaminating the landscape we all battle through and it is fair to say no quarter is given by their debut full-length. That is not to day it is all anger and violence though, The Truth Syndicate Diaries equipped with the thickest contagions, most virulent anthems, and a melodic prowess to give any band a run for its money. Is it the most original thing you will come across this year, probably not, but if looking for one massively invigorating and accomplished proposition, this is a done deal.

Radiodrone began early 2014 and quickly whipped up keen support and awareness for themselves through what has been called a “searing” live presence and tracks like Want it Back and NeverLoution, two early singles sparking acclaim and rich radio play. There is rebellion in the band’s rock ‘n’ roll and as suggested earlier in their lyrical stance, yet it is evolved into something which never gets predictable or is lacking in diversity. The band has been described as being “part schizoid Five Finger Death Punch on the heavy edge, part Foo Fighters rock with the commercial aspects and part hard grooves”, a valid hint which is quickly realised and more by album opener Game Change.

The album is top and tailed by intro skits /provocative commentaries, and every song split by the same, but the release really takes off once Game Change hits ears with rapping beats as its guitars brew up a tasty scrub of riffs. The track is soon into a welcoming feisty stride with the rhythms of drummer Danny Molgaard and bassist Stephen Appel continuing to offer threat and infectious tempting. A hard rock air and swing quickly hits the song as guitarist Ethan Hedayat lays a thick lure with his lead vocals, a strong presence assisted as potently in voice by fellow guitarist Randy Cash and Appel. It is a rousing stomp, stirring up the appetite with heavy rock ‘n’ roll hooks to hang your allegiance on and an anthemic might which easily diminishes any reason to moan the lack of major surprises.

cover_RingMaster Review   The following Want it Back is similarly textured and crafted but quickly filling out into its own antagonistic and commanding character. The bass of Appel is wonderfully grizzly whilst the swinging slaps of Molgaard just seem to get more intensive and effective with every passing rally of beats. The track is a predator yet tempered by again impressive vocal strengths and blends, as well as the magnetic enterprise of both guitarists. You can feel a touch of bands like Seether, Godsmack, and Shinedown to the track, such flavours woven into its own if not unique certainly individual incitement.

NeverLoution is a more even tempered and reserved proposal yet with another throaty bass lure amidst wiry strands of sonic grooving, it blossoms into a tenacious and rigorously persuasive offering. Its melodic side and underlying snarl reminds a touch of Sick Puppies whilst its metallic groaning has a whisper of Nonpoint, and combined both aspects only add to another swift nudge on enjoyment before the gripping Get Your Head Down emerges with an enticing sonic shimmer and melodic coaxing. Appel persistently gives the richest alluring shadows to songs, and here his bass is an entrapping resonance leading ears straight into an infectious tempest making up the body of the song, but a stormy muscular affair built on spicy grooves and melodic flames.

Both Showdown and Massive keep things seriously rocking, the first with dirty blues lined walls around jagged riffs and stabbing beats driven by, as now expected, mouth-watering enterprise from vocals and guitars, and the second through its dusty croon across a restrained yet fiery and unreservedly catchy landscape. In their individual ways, the pair of tracks incites another surge of pleasure whilst impressing more, as the album, with every listen. Despite that potency though, they still have to submit to the best track on the album, the raging roar of Battle Call. Instantly like an old friend back to stir up trouble and anarchy, the song enters ears with a sturdy stride and confrontational attitude. The vocals are an easy conscription to its call alone but backed by the sinew driven rhythms and scything hooks of the track, it is an invigorating storm embracing broader melodic escapades to its vivaciously resourceful and incendiary canvas. Quite simply this is the kind of song the word anthem was composed for.

We’re Alright is a slow burner of a song, its smoulder working away on ears and thoughts with an underlying and unrelenting persistence. It also takes a few listens to find the same level of greed for its creative adventure as other exploits upon the album. Like Pop Evil meets Stone Sour, the song leaves a good impression from the off nevertheless triggering a want to go back for more. That success is aggressively ripe within the compelling and bracing snarl of Double Think, just one more offer upon The Truth Syndicate Diaries to get keenly involved with.

The album comes to a close with Don’t Get Me Started, one final voraciously galvanic and superbly crafted inflaming of emotion and energy from release and listener. It perfectly sums up The Truth Syndicate Diaries, an album which might not flirt with startling originality but out rocks and outshines most contenders, and yes it just gets better and better over time to.

The Truth Syndicate Diaries is available now on ITunes, and Amazon.

http://radiodronemusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/pages/Radiodrone/1462833703951662

RingMaster 14/07/2015

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

 

NG26 – Until My Heart Stops

NG26_RingMaster Review

In the hunt for some prime rock n’ roll which is maybe a touch low on major surprises but has all the attributes and invention, not forgetting rousing tenacity, to start a voracious stomp in a dance hall of wallflowers, then say hello to UK rockers NG26 and their new album Until My Heart Stops. Loaded with ten hard/alternative rock tracks soaked with metal aggression, the encounter is one accomplished and rigorously solid slab of heavy rock unafraid to flirt with melodic adventure or a nest of squirming grooves. Whether Until My Heart Stops will be the encounter to knock your socks off we cannot not predict but for an increasingly great and lingering time it is guaranteed to hit the spot.

The beginning of NG26 seems to vary, some reports saying it was the late nineties and other claiming around 2005 or so. Whatever the actual date, the Derbyshire quartet has risen from igniting the local rock/metal scene to sparking national awareness, primarily to their potent live presence and the release of the album Open Your Mind in 2011/12. Critically acclaimed by fans and media alike, the encounter spawned a trio of successful singles and just as eagerly devoured videos for each. More singles followed with praise and attention, as also the Devil’s Kiss EP of 2013, its tracks making a strong teaser for what now excites ears via Until My Heart Stops.

NG26 consists of two sets of brothers, Chris and Jon Topley, on vocals and drums respectively, alongside bassist Rob and sibling guitarist Rich Shaw, who also plays in Cradle Of Filth and the excellent Emperor Chung. It is a line-up soaked in experience which certainly explains the open tightness of songs and sounds fuelling the album, and is in rich evidence straight away as Never Enough sets things off in thumping style. A fanfare like flame of guitar is the first rich lure, quickly backed by plenty more in the shape of rousing riffs and scything beats. The snarling vocal tones of Chris, backed nicely by those of Rob, only add to the anthemic appeal brewing in ears, melodies and dirty harmonies adding their rich part to the infectious mix in matching potency. With a solo from Rich provides additional icing on the riot, the song simply sparks attention and a swiftly eager appetite.

NG26 cover_RingMaster Review     A blues scent spices the opening guitar enterprise of Daylight Breaks, but quickly expectations are left empty handed as the song slips into a mellow and reflective passage of vocals and enticing melodies, subsequently flaring up again to thrilling effect before going through the same magnetic cycle. The track does not quite have the same bite and rabid feel of the first in the end and in turn lacks finding the same success with personal tastes, yet it is a lingering and thoroughly enjoyable stroll setting up Save It For Me. The song unveils its own mix of alternative and hard rock which from a slightly underwhelming start, breeds a web of riveting grooves and agitated rhythms you would sell your granny for. The song epitomises the whole album in the way that whether individual tastes might not spark with particular moments of songs and release, something is always there on the horizon to stir up the passions again.

   Barely Breathe sparkles with technical and sonic resourcefulness next, its body somewhere between Alter Bridge and maybe Periphery, and constantly keeping ears and imagination on their toes before being outshone by Afterlife and its bordering on psychotic jungle of carnivorous rhythms and ravenous riffs, all bound in spicily caustic sonic vines. The track is a major highlight on the release, its rabid ferocity and imagination channelled through the irresistible skilled and hungry craft of all four members of the band.

A more restrained air covers the following Cease Fire, though it cannot defuse the gripping rapacity of drums and bass or the impassioned energy fuelled the satisfaction filling encounter. Again shocks are few but adventure and enjoyment thick, especially with the vocal twist late. The same can be said of Out Of My Life straight after, another track bursting with the impressive individual skills and potent songwriting on offer, though it too has to give sway to one more peak in the album. Little Indiscretions is the most rugged and cantankerous track on Until My Heart Stops, a blistering mix of groove metal and melodic rock ‘n’ roll especially expelling its most addictive strains of persuasion when it is belligerently growling.

As the album draws to a close, the excellent You Sold Me Lies provides an intensive and dramatic tempest of emotion and compelling endeavour whilst in ending things, Song For Mozaz offers a captivating ballad aligning the expressive tones of Chris to the piano and stringed beauty provided by guest musician Ryan Noon. It is a fine end to the highly enjoyable album, a finish which also shows the strength of the singer’s vocals which at other times do not get, for these ears, the most understanding production on the album, occasionally Chris’ delivery struggling against the swamping strength of the sounds around him. It is a smallish issue for the main and certainly disappears with his impressive presence in the last two songs.

Overall Until My Heart Stops is a highly enjoyable release which might not get the pulse racing as much as it might but definitely gets the appetite wanting plenty more, a success many dream of.

Until My Heart Stops is available now via Holier Than Thou Records @ http://holierthanthourecords.bandcamp.com/album/until-my-heart-stops

https://www.facebook.com/mightyNG26

RingMaster 14/07/2015

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