Athenas Word – Lasting Legacy

Athena's Word Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

It seems that across 2015, and indeed going back to last year, there has been a tide of highly enjoyable new post and melodic hardcore protagonists leaping on the senses with varying success. There have been some truly impressive debuts and some carrying the real potential of major things to grip attention. As we reflect whilst tapping keys though, few have been a truly lingering proposal with a sound easy to recall at a sniff of a memory, bands which have made a truly inescapable impact. Death Kindly Waits For Me is one band which definitely had that success and now we are eager to add Athenas Word. The Dutch band makes its introduction with the Lasting Legacy EP, a debut that musically captivates ears and imagination, if admittedly without dramatically reshaping the genre with major originality, yet. That alone makes the release a potent confrontation but aligned to a rousing vocal attack which is empowered by various strains of punk; it is a bruising and fiercely exhilarating tempest that just excites.

Athenas Word was officially formed in the Autumn of 2014, though the seeds and some songs in the band’s armoury went back to the previous year when bassist Tjerk Goselink and guitarists Dennis Sjoers and Jerry Klein initially began working on their vision of the project. Drawing on inspirations from the likes of While She Sleeps, Napoleon, Architects, and Heights, a few artists Athenas Word has also been compared too, the band’s full line-up was completed by early 2015 with the addition of vocalist Erik Voestermans last year and drummer Kasper Stap this. The band has been a potent roar on the Dutch live scene since, whilst taking time out to record and release the already well-received Lasting Legacy. Now the EP gets a reboot into broader attention and European markets, a nudge to be quickly supported by the band live as they become a more widely visible proposition.

Athena's Word Cover Artwork_RingMaster Review     It opens with Deserved Freedom, an instantly arousing sonic bellow which does take its time setting up the senses before launching a ravenous rhythmic assault within a web of guitar causticity and enterprise. It is an imposing assault which, even in its more even tempered moments, is a ravenous proposal driven by the excellent belligerent roars of Voestermans. Within the first blaze of melodic toxicity and bracing brutality, a contagious quality soaks the varied textures of imagination, some loud and vocal within the tempest and some a fascinating squirm in the belly of the hardcore fuelled storm. It is an outstanding start resonating in ears and thoughts after its departure and whipping up a hungry appetite to hear more in its wake.

Death From Above is the first to feed that fresh greed, its opening also a quickly thick enticement ensuring rich focus is a given. Vocals and rhythms are a carnivorous proposition but find themselves entwined in an acidic tendril of guitar which tempers and enhances the song’s venomous seduction simultaneously. Once more the vocals just hit the spot. They are not spectacular but in grasping an organic mix of punk and grizzly rock rapacity, provide something different and highly flavoursome to song and release. As its predecessor, the track comes to a great abrupt halt; its job done, nothing more to say attitude adding to the power of its drama and success.

The following Wolfpack makes a more ‘conventional’ entrance, melodies wrapping hostile intensity as vocals and rhythms badger. The more adventurous aspects come as the track merges relative emotive calms with the maelstrom of volatility driving the track, the anthemic latter admittedly, for personal tastes, where the song has its most potent elements. It is a rousing incitement making way for another in Honour The Fallen, a similarly structured and creatively shaped rabidity of emotions and sound. In contrast, it is the imaginative ebbs in the fury that impresses most, they coming in varying stages and designs with Athenas Word never getting indulgent or relinquishing its carnivorous and uncompromising intimidation. More of a grower than instant success compared to the first two songs, it blossoms into another rich persuasion to help the EP get emotions and anticipation of future endeavours excited.

Lasting Legacy is brought to a close by This Is How It Ends, another roar of rock ‘n’ roll and post hardcore intrusiveness that grows into its full temptation over numerous plays. It never quite matches its companions in strength, it missing a certain spark of imagination yet leaves satisfaction healthy and enjoyment for the whole sonic tempest of the EP full.

It is going to be interesting to see how Athenas Word develops, and no doubt be highly enjoyable at the same time, but they could not have got off to a stronger and more persuasive start than with Lasting Legacy.

The Lasting Legacy EP is out now @

Pete Ringmaster 28/10/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Stormbringer – Blood And Rust

Stormbringer _RingMaster Review

Scratching around for a powerhouse of rock ‘n’ roll to get down and dirty with? Then UK rockers Stormbringer and new album Blood And Rust should undoubtedly be your next port of call. The eleven track stomp is a thrillingly explosive and inventive blaze of heavy metal and riff fuelled rock, a creative ferocity weaving elements of enticing familiarity into broad roars fresh and distinct to the Northampton quintet. Most of all though, Blood And Rust is one thickly invigorating triumph from a band ready to stand alongside and indeed outshine the big boys.

The beginning of Stormbringer goes back to 2011 with members of Deadeye, Nekkrosis, and Viking Skull meeting for beers and music talk. Soon guitarists Ash Smith and Dom Wallace were recruiting drummer Jon Paul Quantrill and bassist Darren McCullagh to their new project, and from jamming and writing to recording had within a year created enough songs to fill an album. Now a vocalist was needed and in the winter of 2012 Mike Stockley joined the band, he soon laying down the vocals for debut album MMXIII, which was released the following July. The next years saw the band playing reputation building and acclaim earning shows which included appearances at Download and Bloodstock on its main stage. Due other commitments, Stockley had to eventually leave Stormbringer with his replacement subsequently coming in the shape of ex-Burn City Burn frontman Jimi Brown. Skipping forward over a haul of months, and we have the release of second album Blood and Rust, an encounter announcing Stormbringer as a valid protagonist to lead muscular British rock ‘n’ roll.

small_cover_RingMaster Review   Blood & Rust opens with its title track, a brief emotive instrumental hinting at the imagination with its winding melodies and eventually climatic air. Building tension and drama, the piece evolves into the tempest of No Redemption, a rampaging devilry of swinging grooves and thumping rhythms aligned to rousing riffery and the instantly impressing tones of Brown. It is an adrenaline fuelled incitement empowered further by the appetite coaxing craft of the guitars; they courted by the rousing quality of rhythms and vocals. Already neck muscles and eager attention are subservient to the release, Rise tightening the chains with its predatory yet inviting mix of tenacious riffing and a rugged confrontation of grouchy bass and sinew driven drums. A shadowy backing vocal adds to the lure of the song too, adding great shade to Brown’s delivery and the virulent contagion gripping ears from within the magnetic storm.

The following Bad Blood has a slightly more even temper to its character, though it does not skimp on creative aggression and muscle honed infection under the thick lure of Brown, he backed by great band shouts. It is fair to say that every song within Blood And Rust is an anthem in their own particular way, with this fourth track one of the most vocal and inescapable persuasions on body and voice of the listener before it makes way for the darker hues of Unto Me. The sound of McCullagh’s bass is almost bestial in tone, an early tempting still holding the keenest of attention as the guitars spin their web of imposing riffs and spicy grooves. Less forceful than its predecessors in urgency and energy, the song builds its own brand of intensity veined by rich melodic enterprise and imagination bringing more classic rock essences to light up its body.

Ashamed uncages a more boisterous and heavy intent next, its body still under a rein energy wise but making up for it with an invasive weight of sound lined with jagged scenery of riffs and beats. Brown again excels as impressively in voice as the music crowding his delivery, its ravenous intent and stalking gait a perpetual maze of invention and imaginative twists culminating in a superbly addictive finale. The track is outstanding, overshadowing its successor No Return, though it too is soon sparking full enjoyment and involvement with a somewhat familiar if indefinable design to its chorus and grooves, a success matched by Off the Edge straight after. Another track which prowls the senses, even with its elevated energy, it casts a maze of stirring endeavour and fiery catchiness that simply means involvement in its cause is instinctive. With a highly pleasing drift into a melodically haunting passage skirted by almost rabidly hued rhythms and riffs, the song enthrals and whips up the passions, a success even more intensive in Cross to Bear. The track is pure rock ‘n’ roll; from its first breath slavery of wiry grooves and punchy beats held in the grip of Brown’s vocals. Smith and Wallace transfix with their whirling tendrils of craft whilst Quantrill has senses reeling with his wicked strikes, every element of the song woven into a leviathan of an anthem infused with sonic seducing and melodic invention.

As if drawing on all the fascinating qualities within the songs before it, the seven minute croon of Voice of Demons is Stormbringer revealing all their variety of sound and resourceful imagination in one potent temptation. Catchy and reflective, melodically gentle and physically robust, the song is a glorious roar epitomising the band’s skill and invention whilst expanding the impact and depth of Blood And Rust yet again.

The song would have made the perfect high to end on but Stormbringer have one final treat in a cover of Talking Heads classic Psychokiller. A well covered song with let us be honest, only a few having been able to do it justice in their own style before, Stormbringer join that small number of real successes with a grouchier and far more fiery interpretation. They give it a full-on rock ‘n’ roll makeover without losing the core psychosis which has made the song a major inspiration, coming up with one mouth-watering version as a result.

Blood And Rust is Stormbringer at another new level of sound and presence which in turn ignites a new fire in the UK rock/metal scene for the year. It is a gem and really there is no excuse for any fan of either flavour not to go treat themselves with it.

Blood And Rust is out now digitally and on CD via Attic Records @

Pete RingMaster 28/10/2105

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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