The Visit – Through Darkness Into Light

The Visit_RingMasterReview

Many before us have cast potent words of acclaim and ardour upon the highly anticipated debut album from Canadian duo The Visit; enamoured comments and descriptions as complicated and simplistic as the arising emotions warranted. To those justified statements of praise come another; Through Darkness Into Light is simply one of the most sublimely crafted and mesmeric moments of pure aural beauty you are likely to hear in a long time.

The Visit is the creative union of cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne and vocalist Heather Sita Black, a project which emerged around a year ago within the Ottawa music scene. Soon their live performances were earning mass praise as too their debut release, the bordering on fifteen minute adventure of single track Between Worlds. Securing coveted slots at Nouvelle Prague Festival in Prague, Czech Republic, Ottawa’s RBC Bluesfest, and the Royal Conservatory’s esteemed 21C Festival in Toronto since, the pair unveiled their debut album towards the rear of 2015, a proposition which has continued to lure and incite eager attention and lustful plaudits.

Whether taking Through Darkness Into Light as one epic journey or as individual emotive tales, the album is a powerful captivation of sound and creative expression. For simply voice and cello, it is also an awe inspiring giant tapestry reeking atmospheric and emotional suggestiveness. The five tracks making up the release provide poetic soundscapes to physically and emotionally immerse in, yet equally an intimacy in tone and voice which serenades and seduces the imagination as potently as the raw ambiences and enveloping atmospheres hug the senses.

THE VISIT ALBUM COVER_RingMasterReviewSound wise, what seems simple to pin down after a fleeting listen is anything once diving into the album. To try and simplify it, classical chamber music craft and imagination is ingeniously embraced by and entwined with a wealth of transfixing hues from varied sources; Middle Eastern and Persian music among them. From opener Without This Flesh and its cold but engaging initial charm, The Visit cast a fascination of sound and Homeric majesty. The magnetic elegance and poignancy of Black’s voice paints rhapsodic yet intimate reflections of vast and at times starkly imposing landscapes and their emotive beauty whilst the Weinroth-Browne conjures a physical portrayal with his bow which is as majestic whether he gently caresses strings with it or scythes across them with impassioned intensity and drama.

Each track is as much its own mini travelogue of exploration as part of a bigger journey; all persistently evolving and twisting quests of spellbinding imagination and unpredictability. The likes of Offering with its sultry air and shadow bound scenery and the progressively brewed intrigue and beguiling seduction of Cast Off The Veil take the listener into seemingly familiar but undiscovered and arresting avenues of worldly theatre and emotional observation. Again the cinematic quality of tracks simply adds to the adventurous reactions of ears and imagination which as the music evolves with every listen of each individual creative emprise such as the album’s final pair, the spellbinding Through Darkness and celestially hued Into Light.

As traditions and bold discoveries merge, reflected in lyrical voice and sound, the release sparks fresh interpretations with every listen, ones that also persistently shift and will be unique to every set of ears and imagination immersing into Through Darkness Into Light. Truly it is impossible to give a full picture in words of the creative alchemy at work from Weinroth-Browne and Black, and we have barely touched on the technical might of both, but it is very easy to recommend an album and experience of pure inspirational beauty which is unlike anything you will come across anywhere else.

Through Darkness Into Light is available now @ http://thevisit1.bandcamp.com/

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Pete RingMaster 09/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Projekt F – The Butterfly Effect

Picture taken by Chantal Levesque

Picture taken by Chantal Levesque

Since emerging in 2006, Canadian industrial outfit Projekt F has grown in sound and adventure release by release. Their music and themes have openly become darker and more imposing, now reaching a new pinnacle with latest EP, The Butterfly Effect. The seven track provocation is the band at its emotionally rawest and aggressively boldest, a fusion of industrial bred metal and rock which has all the qualities and adventure to push the band to much broader attention.

Formed by vocalist/keyboardist Jonh M. Miller upon inspirations gained from nineties bred industrial rock/metal sounds, Projekt F soon made their mark and became an eagerly followed proposition within the Montreal underground scene. Live the band has earned a potent reputation for their intensive stage presence and has added, over time, playing alongside Combichrist at Canada’s Kinetik Festival and shows with the likes of Motionless In White, Revolting Cocks, Angelspit, Nachtmar, Left Spine Down, Slaves on Dope, For Today, and Ice Nine Kills to their CV. Debut EP, 0000 was a swiftly devoured proposition with its release in 2009, surpassed in praise and success by the band’s first album Skins in 2013 and the Under The Skin EP a year later. Continuing the themes explored in those previous two releases, and looking at the torrid relationship between man and God, The Butterfly Effect is the band’s most accomplished and striking offering yet, and potentially the wake up call to global ears.

PF_TBE_Cover_RingMasterReviewThe Butterfly Effect opens with its title track, a short but evocative instrumental spawned from the dark incitement of shadows and carrying the portentous lure of anthemic rhythms. Wrapped in atmospheric chills and a haunting synth spawned ambience, the piece swiftly grips ears and imagination, accentuating it’s tempting with a subsequent veining of enticing guitar. It is a potent introduction quickly taken to new heights by Tongue which leaps from the invasive sonic mist of its predecessor. The second track descends on the senses like a tsunami, smothering and disturbing their previous relative calm with a wall of carnivorous riffs and barbarous rhythms guided by raw antipathy. As the song settles though, that intensive assault merges with mellower essences of voice and flirtatious enterprise, all the time though building up to further predacious crescendos. The track devours and excites with every twist and turn of its imagination fuelled tempest, evolving its musical and physical grudge with an invasive seduction for something akin to a volatile mix of Society 1, Korn, and Combichrist.

The dramatic and tenacious craft of drummer Fred Linx is one irresistible and galvanic element which continues to masterfully stir up emotions in Cut Your Wings; his swings and dexterity a call to arms for instincts backed by the maelstrom of predatory riffs and scything grooves cast by guitarist Simon Sayz. The track is another thunderous protagonist which stalks and infests ears and psyche with every essence at its disposal. William Hicks’ bass deceptively prowls the persistently changing trespass upon the senses; at times offering a welcoming hand into the cauldron of sound and energy, in other moments becoming a lead assassin of peace and emotional security. With Miller’s tones equally adventurous in their expression and touch, the track is a caustically virulent blaze.

Unbegun opens up in similar style, scathing vocals and scarring sonic vengefulness pressing ears as rhythms offer a more restrained though no less potent bait. In time creative agitation grabs them, breeding skittish moments as melodic twists break the early sonic voracity which in turn returns with more adventurous intent as the band leans towards a Muse like flame of melodic and harmonic resourcefulness. The overall aggression and ill will of the track is emphasized by next up 03:47:09:08:1945. A fiercely melancholic and seriously haunting acoustic led melodic ‘drone’, it is a provocative echo to the hours before the US dropped their bomb on the city of Nagasaki on the title’s date.

The full intensity and savagery of the moment is uncaged in Fatman, the track an industrial metal fuelled furnace of again raw emotion and debilitating intensity around a simple but forcibly addictive bassline. The track is a blistering incitement cast with the searing hooks and rapacious grooves which Projekt F has honed to impressive and exhilarating effect over their last releases. As vocals and synth spread ambience provide a hostile wind, the excellent intrusion ignites thought and emotion which the closing When the Angel Fell From the Sky embraces further with its sombre fall out and emotive poetry of piano and melancholic keys.

The Butterfly Effect is a fascinating and rousing encounter from a band settling into their creative skin and reaping the rewards. The EP is Projekt F on a new level with hopefully a deserving attention to match to come.

The Butterfly Effect is out now @ http://projektf.bandcamp.com/album/the-butterfly-effect

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Pete RingMaster 09/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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HEKSAGONS – EPISODES One

Heksagons_RingMasterReview

Patronage has always been a potent element for the arts over the centuries and continues to be so. It has generally been associated with the wealthy, royalty etc. supporting particular artists in varied mediums but nowadays has emerged as something for all to get involved in through the likes of crowd-funding. UK duo HEKSAGONS is a band seeing the extra potential in it, striving to provide their music for free by ignoring sales and funding their endeavours through fans as patrons. To spark such endeavour, HEKSAGONS has just released the irresistible first part of a debut album set to be recorded and released over three episodes.

HEKSAGONS is the union of Bobby Bloomfield (Does It Offend You, Yeah?) and HinHin. There is little more to reveal about the project right now other than adding the opening line to Bobby’s introduction to the band to us, “I have a side project called HEKSAGONS. We are all about flutes, talk boxes, 70s synths and psychedelia.” As much as that sums things up neatly though, it is only a hint at the fun to be found in the spellbinding psych pop, spatially adventured EPISODES One.

episodesone_RingMasterReviewIt swings into view with the exceptional temper tantrums, the track initially an electronic and melodic shimmer of a seduction with the lively exploits and enticements of a Venusian temptress. As it expands it is like being immersed into an episode of Space 1999 with Barbarella for company, the song flirting and playing with the imagination as keys and harmonies share a celestial romance aligned to sultry funk spawned revelry. The song is delicious, a spellbinding tempting which has all the potential to incite lusty habits.

The following persephone is just as irresistibly magnetic. Its otherworldly charm and melodic sway has a more earthbound feel to it, though thoughts of Stingray and its character Marina spark in thoughts as the electronic smoulder of the song heats up to boisterously merge with the perpetual psychedelic wash of transfixing harmonies led by HinHin. As its predecessor, the track is as potently cinematic as it is melodically persuasive, sparking the imagination to spring its own adventures; a quality just as virulent in one of his episodes. Opening with an old Thames TV ident, the instrumental lies down a sinister synth bred coaxing which becomes more compelling and imposing as rhythms and intensity add their weight. Its dynamics and agitated surge has all the ills of the world in its nature before an evocative calm eventually breaks out to move in and replace the danger lit intimidation with an oasis of calm and safety. It is a peaceful yet shadowed passage which is soon under the returning umbrella of apocalyptic provocations, they building to a closing ear thrilling crescendo.

Completed by the melodic stroll of super-ego, another romance between melodies and harmonies to capture the imagination as an eventful climate frames its psychedelic beauty, EPISODES One brings ears and imagination alive, not forgetting the spirit for creative adventure.

EPISODES One is available for free now @ http://heksagons.com/

For information on being a patron and helping EPISODES Two and Three come to light check out https://www.patreon.com/heksagons

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Pete RingMaster 09/03/3016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Gaffa Tape Sandy – Smart Dressed Guy

GTS_RingMasterReview

Bury St Edmunds is having a heyday right now with the wealth of impressive and imaginative bands emerging from its music scene. With bands like Horse Party, The Machismo’s, and The Vitamins leading the way, the Suffolk market town is making its mark on the UK music map. Now there is another potential soaked and seriously captivating proposition to emerge from the same creative bed. Gaffa Tape Sandy is the band, a trio on the evidence of debut single Smart Dressed Guy creating their own flavoursome form of rock ‘n’ roll by fusing the rich essences of garage punk and alternative rock.

Formed last year, Gaffa Tape Sandy consists of vocalist/guitarist Kim, vocalist/bassist Catherine, and drummer Robin; three friends “with an undying love for music that makes you want to move around and punch your best friend in the head.” They certainly back up that description with their two-track single; a pair of songs with attitude and an instinctive catchiness impossible to ignore.

Gaffa Tape Sandy - Smart Dressed Guy (Single) - cover_RingMasterReviewSmart Dressed Guy swiftly has ears alive and hips swinging, an initial rhythmic volley sparking a lively stroll of jangly chords and eager beats split by a pulsing bassline. There is a scent of rockabilly to the song but equally there is indie revelry reminding of bands like Strangler Figs, it all colluding to stir up the imagination whilst the blend of Kim and Catherine’s vocals adds another enticing hue to back up the former’s naturally energetic delivery. With a further touch of tenacious devilment carrying a touch of Damn Vandals/Top Buzzer to it, the track is an incitement for an exhausted body and a greedy appetite for more, something the track’s companion soon helps with.

L’appel Du Vide is a slightly more reserved proposal; the key word being slightly as it too unveils a frisky mix of dirty riffs and gripping hooks as garage rock inspired as they are punk spiced. Again, little time passes before limbs are flinging moves and energy is shared with the boisterous rock ‘n’ roll of the song and just as quickly that lustful hunger is inspired to greater greed.

This is only two songs of course, so a touch early to claim that Gaffa Tape Sandy is destined to make a major impact on the British rock scene, but Smart Dressed Guy as a whole suggests they certainly have the potential. More of the same or even bolder incitements will only confirm it.

Smart Dressed Guy is available now for free @ https://gaffatapesandy.bandcamp.com/

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Pete RingMaster 09/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Scout Killers – Rip Me Apart

scout killers art_RingMasterReview

Keen anticipation raised for a new Scout Killers offering has always been met with something bigger and bolder than the last rewarding adventure, and so it continues with new single Rip Me Apart. The track is a blaze of festering emotion and sonic intrigue, an impassioned alternative rock bred roar woven into a sound becoming decidedly unique to the UK band with every release. Ahead of a UK tour this April, the single is also a hint that 2016 is going to be a potent year for the Bath based quintet.

Formed in 2009, Scout Killers drew on the inspirations of bands such as Rage Against The Machine, Queens of the Stone Age, Pearl Jam, and Red Hot Chili Peppers as they honed their sound. Fair to say, those spices have been a diminishing flavour to the band’s music and within Rip Me Apart non-existent. From a successful self-titled EP in 2013, Scout Killers has only impressed and drawn greater acclaim as their sound has grown across subsequent singles and the impressive We Cage the Storm EP released late 2014. It has now found a new maturity within the band’s new single; found a depth and power which refuses to be ignored.

The song opens on an electronic shimmer, a low key but potent coaxing which brightens and thickens as the ever impressing voice of Scott Cox moves in on ears. The beats of Chris Phillips present a sturdier enticement whilst guitarists Julien Morrez and Beau Stevens weave a web of reserved but evocative melodies to link it all. In a little stretch of time, a crescendo of energy and emotion builds and erupts, catching passionately alight as Cox roars in kind before settling down again to breed a similar cycle. With the bass of Josh Ellis a roaming shadow in the tapestry adding more provocative texture, ears and imagination find themselves inescapably gripped by the song’s disturbed melancholic soul.

Even as the beguiling lure of vocals steer the bare emotion of the song, it becomes more volatile in sound and heart but still continues to ebb and flow with emotional waves aligned to varying bursts of intensity. The track is as fascinating as it is thickly pleasing, and though we would like to say the Scout Killer sound has come of age, it is easy to feel that there are still more exciting things and avenues to be explored by the band in their music and imagination.

Rip Me Apart will be released on March 28th to be followed by a UK Tour starting April 3rd.

Scout Killers Hi Res Tour 2016 _RingMaster Reviewpic to use

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Pete RingMaster 09/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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