Called Coalition Of The Unwilling, there is little about the new album from US rocker Ape Machine that would surely cause anyone not to enlist in its creative campaign to ignite ears and imagination. The six track romp is an invigorating tapestry of sound and imagination, a kaleidoscope of melodic colour and sonic tantalising which is as bluesy as it is jazzy, as funky as it is a roar inspired by a diversity of rock music from across the decades. Quite simply it is a rock ‘n’ roll blaze that leaves body and emotions in a very good place.
The Portland bred band follow up their acclaimed 2013 album Mangled By The Machine with a new volcanic weave of styles and sound. Recently signing with Italian label Heavy Psych Sounds, Ape Machine take little time igniting release and ears with their potent fusion of adventurous enterprise and sound, starting things off with Crushed From Within. It looms from a sonic mist seemingly cast in the echoes of time, a lone guitar flirting as it triggers a mesmeric stroll of sludgy intensity and winy sonic tempting. A great analogue inspired breath wraps the songs, and indeed the album and its individual parts, enticing a swiftly keen appetite as easily and potently as the fine vocals of Caleb Heinze and the revelry of rhythms cast by bassist Brian True and drummer Damon De La Paz as well as the stringed exploration and infection sprung by guitarist Ian Watts. Managing to feel as much part of seventies/eighties heavy rock as it does current rock ‘n’ roll devilry, the track is a thrilling start to the release.
The following Disband is just as openly inviting and fiery with its blend of rich hues and revolving enterprise. Equally it quickly hooks keen involvement from body and mind, feet and hips bound and inspired by the incitement of grooves and rhythms as the imagination dips into a host of references without settling on any as a specific comparison; the reason being that they are woven into a flirtatious adventure individual to Ape Machine. The track is a storming rocker, bluesy with a stoner-esque scent to simplify things but a much fuller weave of rock music in persuasion, just like the outstanding Give What You Get which comes next. The track is sublime, every aspect honed into an incitement of rousing rock ‘n’ roll temptation and toned with inescapable anthemic tenacity.
The track is a stomp any rock band would sell their bodies for; the perfect invitation to others to check them out, but then again almost any track within Coalition Of The Unwilling is that as proven by the excellent Under This Face. Entering on an almost confrontational air aligned to a rhythmic wake up call, the track soon uncaps a virulent swagger of incendiary beats and hook laden ingenuity. Grooves sizzle and riffs blaze, that alone with the riveting slavery cast by De La Paz irresistible bait, but add atmospheric keys and reflective calm into an ever evolving mix led by the constantly impressing vocals of Heinze, and you have manna for ears and soul.
It is seriously rivalled by the cauldron of instrumental flirtation that is Ape’N’Stein straight away though, the track funk and blues fire, with the latter flavouring more regular old school rather than the delta inspired hue within its predecessor. Its seventies scent is a thick essence too, adding to the enjoyment before it makes way for closing track Never My Way. Initially sultry verging on sonically salty, the guitar weaving surf seduction is a bewitching coaxing aided by bass and voice. It is a reflective enticing erupting quite quickly in a boisterous and emotive crescendo though but then returning to its hypnotic romance to begin the transfixing cycle again.
It is a fine end to a tremendous encounter; a release which can be described and tagged in many ways but is just rock ‘n’ roll to get lustful over. To be honest Coalition Of The Unwilling is our first taste of Ape Machine but for sure it will not be the last.
Coalition Of The Unwilling is available from November 20th via Heavy Psych Sounds.
http://apemachine.com/ https://www.facebook.com/apemachinemusic https://twitter.com/apemachine
Pete RingMaster 20/11/2105
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