Jackson Firebird – Shake The Breakdown

JF_ringmasterreview

Last year saw the global release via Napalm Records of Cock Rockin’, the debut album from Australian rockers Jackson Firebird. Already stirring up eager appetites in their homeland, its riotous expanse of multi-flavoured and feistily raw rock ‘n’ roll quickly went to work on a new expanse of ears and appetites with great success. Now the duo of guitarist/vocalist Brendan Harvey and drummer/vocalist Dale Hudak unleash its successor Shake The Breakdown, another riotous explosion of blistering heavy rock that incites the instincts to have a ball.

Things get swiftly hot and heavy with opener Mohawk Bang!, the track spewing tangy grooves and firm handed rhythms from its first breath. Vocals similarly leave nothing in the locker as they shuffle with zeal on the riotous stride increasingly brewing within the rousing encounter. Southern rock with a splatter of Rage Against The Machine spicing, the track is a storming start to the release, revealing new maturity and prowess in the band’s sound without losing any of the raw tenacity and incendiary texture which gripped throughout the band’s first album.

Get Away twists and grumbles next with a dirtier air and coating to its grouchy presence. Growling somewhere between Motorhead and Nirvana, the track is a web of insatiable grooves and rapier like beats luring a just as hungry appetite from the listener before New Wave parades its heavy hard rock revelry to again anthemic effect. Its skin also has an earthy tone whilst the fingers of Harvey create blues tinged squalls of sonic enterprise to lick lips over within the adrenaline driven charge of the song.

cover_ringmasterreviewFunk inspired grooves writhe throughout the blues spawned High Love next, its rockabilly seeded shuffle alone inescapable addiction but just as mightily matched by the searing contagion spawned by the guitar and speared by the scything rhythms of Hudak. Musically and vocally the track agreeably reminds of US duo, In The Whale, leaving slavery in its tail wind for the thick delta blues bred tempting of Sin For Your Lovin to reinforce, which it does with in fine swamp style before the first of two covers on the album teases ears. The first is a version of Queen’s Fat Bottomed Girls, Jackson Firebird turning it into a distortion soaked rock ‘n’ roll bellow which leaves a smile and potent satisfaction behind, if not the option to add it to the favourites within Shake The Breakdown.

Devil’s Door soon has ears and hips swinging next with a The Black Crowes meets Turbonegro swaggering within a sonic witchery, whilst Voodoo pushes those tones into even more eventful and resourceful endeavours through a creative maelstrom flirting with the recognisable essences of bands such as Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Black Keys, and Pearl Jam. The song equally creates its own character and essence to powerfully entice with before stepping back for the punk ‘n’ roll devilry of Headache Mantra to have its moment of glory lined with a compelling glam metal, rap metal, and noise rock lunacy.

The slow sultry shimmer and stroll of Sick ´n Tired soaks ears next but is soon providing expulsions of heavy boned riffs and commanding rhythms which free themselves from the bluesy climate from time to time. It is an incitement loaded with ‘deceit’ too, the song expressing being “sick ´n tired of playing the blues” and confirming it with Zack de la Rocha and co inspired eruptions.

The album’s second cover is its penultimate track too, Jackson Firebird just stirring up the passion with its rousing take on the Shirley Ellis classic The Clapping Song. Grooves are as virulent and addictively flavoursome as the organic anthemic instincts of the song and verse itself are overwhelming, the union ensuring there is no escaping the breathlessness grasping lungs and body by its close, not that the spidery sonic web of the album’s title track cares as it wraps the listener in a mouth-watering fuzz ball of blues temptation and rhythmic incitement which just gets more furious, tenacious, and compelling across its fiery body.

As its predecessor, Shake the Breakdown leaves a lustful want of more whilst pushing the band’s instinctive diversity of sound and heart fuelled hunger to rock ‘n’ roll to new heights. The bottom-line is that this is another encounter which demands it should be added to that must have list of 2015.

Shake The Breakdown is available now via Napalm Records.

Pete RingMaster 08/09/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

V For Violence – The Book of V

VFORVIOLENCE-band_RingMaster Review

Finnish metallers V For Violence first made an attention nudging statement with up their debut album The Cult Of V in 2009, now after a fair time in the making they unleash its successor The Book of V. Vocalist Jarkko Lähderanta said of the band’s new offering, ”The Book Of V took years to get its shape and sound. We wanted to take the next step in songwriting and paid more attention on details.” It is an intent finding success as the eleven tracks contagion frisks ears and sparks the imagination, and though it easily lures references to other protagonists in the industrial/alternative metal scene and styles around it, the album is simply one rousing and thoroughly enjoyable ferocious stomp.

Formed in 2007 by Lähderanta, drummer Miikki Kunttu, and guitarist Janne Salo, V For Violence was soon luring ears with their first demo in 2008. Its track/video Boy Called Fucker was a swift spark in the band being eagerly devoured by fans and media too, helping lead to their signing with Osasto-A Records soon after for the release of the 2-track single Constant Of Death in the summer of 2009. It was a strong teaser to their impending debut album The Cult Of V released in the November of that same year. The full-length was a well-received proposal pushing the band towards stronger spotlights backed by a live presence which by this point had already seen V For Violence support Hardcore Superstar and in turn going on to the sharing of stages with the likes of Die So Fluid, Cold Cold Ground, Amorphis, Hypocrisy, Underoath, and Architects at shows and festivals. Now with bassist Jani Rahkonen and guitarist Riku Vuorio alongside Lähderanta, Salo, and Kunttu, V For Violence have the long awaited The Book of V poised and ready to stir up the metal scene.

And that it pretty much does even if its originality is locked in the arms of open familiarity to a few heavyweights. Like a fusion of Fear Factory and Marilyn Manson in league with Dope and Powerman 5000, the album and opening track, The Halted Saint explode on the senses with anthemic ferocity. For some you suspect that recognisable air might not work as well as for others, but V For Violence bring their own raw and aggressive twist on things too ensuring that each track has something fresh and extra to say and certainly grip a demanding appetite and imagination by. The band’s new single clouds ears with thick industrial smog but swiftly sends sinewy tendrils of guitar and scything rhythms through it as the climate begins to clear on a corrosive and quickly addictive stalking. Those previously mentioned references straight away work on thoughts as too Society 1 in regard to the caustic and impassioned, bordering on sexual, intensity driving the encounter. Grooves and hooks just spark whilst the strong vocals of Lähderanta roar with expression and incitement for an outstanding start to the album’s fury.

V-For-Violence-TheBookOfV-cover__RingMaster Review     The potent beginning continues with the predatory prowl of The Downfall Pt. I: To Feel Alive. Initially it smoulders within imposing walls with mellow melodies and vocal coaxing but is soon building a volatile atmosphere and intimidating lining of textures, though still dipping into its elegant reflective heart throughout. Once more Manson is an obvious comparison to a song which at times has you drooling and in other moments simply fascinated by its adventurous nature and spicing.

Never Enough uncages the darkest bestial bass riffs and salacious grooves next, splintering them with vocal bellows and psyche gripping hooks to get very greedy over whilst Like It Like That and I Need You spew inescapable virulence in their individual characters. As most songs, choruses conjured are like infection dosed traps, impossible not to be fully involved in whilst around them creative snarls and in the latter of this trio, sinisterly dramatic nuances toy with the imagination. It is fair to say that a few songs share a closely seeded template but many, as here, create from that something strikingly inventive and captivating.

Band and album continues to hit the spot as tracks like the carnivorous A Place To Fill with its electronic festivity and guitar led twists, and the wonderful sonic groan and intimate melodies of God On Trial just ignite the senses. The second of these two is another major pinnacle in the album, every minute a cauldron of emotion and flirtatiously venomous enterprise equipped with unpredictability before it has to make way for Sodomedia which rivals it with its own hellacious and irritable industrial grooving. Once more limbs and thick involvement in the tempest is unavoidable, the breath taken too in the exhausting pleasure consuming the senses

The following Not A Word with its more hard rock seeded swagger lacks the spark and triggers of its predecessors yet again has a keenly persuasive impact on ears and satisfaction whilst What The Fuck! throws its attitude out with zeal, rhythmic and vocal relish fuelling the Five Finger Death Punch/ American Head Charge spiced confrontation.

The Book of V closes with the sweltering croon of The Downfall Pt. II: Amourageddon, its initial acoustic and emotive smoulder again as in Part 1, rising to dense intensity and melancholic ire whilst this time embracing classical and symphonic hues alongside an evocative industrial climate. A relative slow burner compared to other tracks within the album, it constantly evolves and reveals new treats to bring the release to a fine conclusion.

Fair to say we greedily devoured The Book of V and continue to, each track a tasty slice of invigorating fire and hostility. If any of those previously mentioned comparisons do not work for you than possibly V For Violence will struggle to persuade too but for the rest, this is one easy to recommend incitement.

The Book of V is available now via Inverse Records.

Pete RingMaster 08/09/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Exxasens – Back To Earth

cover_RingMaster Review

Sheer captivation for ears and imagination, Back To Earth is as much a rich flight of suggestion as it is a sonic portrait. It offers a persistently evolving journey within its walls which leads every single involvement in that spatial adventure breeding new and different explorations within the imagination. The new album is the new offering from Spanish rock band Exxasens who weave a revolving kaleidoscope of post and space rock which equally draws on other potent flavours immersed in ambient majesty. There is an almost exhausting richness and density to the textures and creative hues crafted within the release and it is fair to say everything together leaves ears and imagination basking.

Exxasens was originally the solo project of Barcelona guitarist/programmer Jordi Ruiz (Playmotive, Kyba) who took the inspiration of space and “particularly those that have voyaged heroically into its heart of darkness” as the spark to his compositions and explorations. That theme has continued to be the incitement across each song crafted and proposition released, starting from debut album Polaris, released by ConSouling Sounds in 2008. Its successor Beyond The Universe the following year, again via the same label, awoke greater attention as Ruiz’s predominantly instrumental soundscapes continue to grow and expand as the realm they explored. Eleven Miles came next, released in 2011 on Aloud Music Ltd who also provided the vehicle for the critically acclaimed Satellites to be devoured through two years later. Since then Exxasens has grown to a quartet with bassist Cesc Cespedes, keyboardist Sergio Ledesma, and drummer Oriol Planells linking up with Ruiz, and now unveiling the eight track absorption that is Back To Earth.

From the sultrily alluring charm of Supernova, the album bewitches and involves the listener. The opener casts a smooth yet invigorated adventure through gentle and seductive spatial caresses edged by more volatile rhythmic agitation. Endearing melodies slip from the guitars like ripe fruit from a tree whilst the keys are more mist like with an equal potency on ears and thoughts. Their lures are aligned to dramatic rhythms which just intensify as the song’s atmosphere becomes increasingly fiery. It is a thrilling and enthralling take off for the album which My Hands Are Planets hones into its own energetically ethereal insight. As across most tracks there is a loneliness echoed by the sounds but one which simultaneously welcomes attention with a warm tempting; these reassuring colours and atmospherics portrayed through rousing melodies and evocative synth cast seducing.

Comparisons to the like of Mogwai and 65daysofdstatic have been lent the band previously and indeed towards Back To Earth, easy to understand why with the masterful entwining of sounds and elements within tracks like Hugeness and Oniria’s Interlude, though all tracks certainly spin their own identity with the first of this pair courting a more rugged and rocky scenery of textures and energy where extremes embroil in each other’s beauty, often with whirlpool like tenacity and appetite. Additionally enriched by a melodic choir like array of voices at one point, the track is superb, rousing the energies before its successor calms them back down with its radiant melodies and provocative stringed beauty. Its irresistible charm leads ears and emotions into the exhilarating multi-toned depths of Your Dreams Are My Dreams and another ever changing and compelling emprise of sound and suggestiveness.

Bright Side Of The Moon has a more exotic air as Porcupine Tree like flames incite within an increasingly mercurial atmosphere. It is a tempting which becomes more aggressively arousing and in turn intoxicating with every twisting groove and fiercely expressive sonic enticement before Saturn comes forward with new provocative exploits. With vocals for the only time on the album a prominent and highly agreeable proposal and texture, the track is as fascinating as it is electrifying, its Tool meets Voyager meets God Is An Astronaut an easy immersion.

Completed by its rhythmically galvanic, melodically spellbinding, and sonically searing title track, Back To Earth just takes you to other realms and new climates with fresh awareness of sound and in one’s own thoughts. Quite simply the album is glorious and Exxasens an incitement to real musical adventure all should partake in.

Back To Earth is available now via Aloud Music Ltd in Europe, the Ricco Label in Asia (Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia), and Rock-House in Russia.

Pete RingMaster 08/09/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/