Bardus – Stella Porta

bardus_2016_RingMasterReview

Fresh from a US tour with Grizzlor and on the first step of another American tour, this time with The Glorious Rebellion in celebration of their new album Euphoric, Philadelphia hailing Bardus have their own slice of sonic delight being uncaged courtesy of Solar Flare Records. Released the April 1st, the opening date of the tour, Stella Porta is a rich and uncompromising seven track maelstrom of sludge, grunge, noise, and psych rock forcibly showing exactly why so many people are making vocal fuss about the trio.

Formed in 2011, Bardus quickly showed that their sound and songs was never going to settle into one style or predictable design. Their self-released debut album Solus in 2013 proved that; its well-received uncaging the spark to a growing reputation built and pushed by the band’s DIY intent and live presence which has seen them regularly tour and share stages with numerous national acts. As Stella Porta infests the senses, it feels like it just might be the wake-up all to those yet to be challenged and persuaded by the band’s vociferously intrusive sound. If that is not to be, it is certainly a potent and impressive step to grow that success from.

The album starts with the voraciously compelling Smoke Bath, a track which instantly grips ears and appetite with the controlled stroll of Kyle Pierce’s beats and the grouchily infectious growl of Ari Rosenberg’s bass. Soon it is awash with the caustic strokes and sonic animosity of guitar, Justin Tuck casting an invasive web of discord fuelled drama matched by his raw throated vocal squalls and angst. It is a gripping start to the release, noise and punk drenched rock ‘n’ roll with thick anthemic prowess stirring up imagination and passions ready for the equally rousing exploits of Monolith. As with the first song, there is a touch of label stable mates Sofy Major and the likes of Unsane to the track but every impacting swing and raw sonic trespass only reveals a voice and character unique to Bardus; those essences of familiarity merging with fascinatingly fresh and beguiling imagination.

SLF022 - hi-res cover_RingMasterReviewSky King backs that up with its opening sonic mist offering a recognisable air but soon igniting into a furious punk ‘n’ roll tango with flirtatious rhythms and an addictive hook alongside a senses scarring vocal attack within a noise infested tempest of blistering intensity and ever shifting enterprise. Irresistible in its unbridled rampage and evocatively intrusive in its calmer inhospitality, the song incites fresh urges of  hunger in an already eager appetite before the thicker doomy atmospherics of Transcendence wrap a sludgy, bordering on funereal, canvas of suggestiveness. There is venomous vitriol and intimidating portentousness to its enveloping animus though which incites a lively almost rancorous energy to the track.

Living up to its name, Haze provides an opening raw embrace which sonically drifts and evocatively lies on ears, enveloping the listener as clean vocals align with an infectiously inviting and melodically distorted passage of calmer flirtation. As expected it is soon ablaze though, ferocious vocal discontent and sonic dissonance drenching song and recipient before rotating between the two extremes for another keenly favourite moment of Stella Porta to which the Melvin-esque Oracle creates a matching pinnacle with its own abrasive rock ‘n’ roll with ire stained vocals and an insatiable virulence in hooks and spicy grooves. As everywhere upon the album, there is theatre to the songwriting and its inventive portrayal which fuels a web of intrigue and imagination which right here is unafraid to involve surf and psych rock seducing in a tempest of belligerent noise and intent.

Clandestine brings the release to a jaundiced yet inescapably bewitching grudge of a close, guitars and voice the corrosive roar around the more controlled but no less impacting rhythmic predation offered. Though maybe not quite igniting the passions as many of its predecessors, it is a fine to an excellent intrusion on body and emotions.

Like so many albums recently, Stella Porta takes its time to rise to its full creative height but as many, each play only enhances its qualities and irresistible persuasion to show why Bardus is becoming a favourite challenging flavour for a great many.

Stella Porta is released April 1st via Solar Flare Records @ http://shop.solarflarerds.com/products/567534-preorder-bardus-stella-porta-cd-digital

https://www.facebook.com/BardusMusic   http://bardus.bandcamp.com

Pete RingMaster 01/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Bendal Interlude – Reign of the Unblinking Eye

bendalInterlude_RingMasterReview

Attempting to build on the reputation and acclaim earned through their previous clutch of EPs, British metallers The Bendal Interlude unleash their debut album; a cauldron of sludge, stoner, and blues with psych and thrash metal to sear and ignite the senses. The release is a beast of a proposition; an attention grabber reinforcing and pushing the already firm stature of the Liverpool quartet but maybe one not quite seeing the band going far enough with the new bold elements of flavour and imagination to steer them away from similarly designed offerings over recent times. Nevertheless Reign of the Unblinking Eye is a fiercely enticing and enjoyably rousing slab of predacious riffs, salacious grooves, and thumping rhythmic aggression.

Drawing on inspirations from bands such as Melvins, Crowbar, and Cathedral, The Bendal Interlude have increasingly drawn fans and attention through a quartet of releases, starting with an early Demo followed by the Foal Recordings EP in 2010, a Self-Titled EP the following year, and the Odourama EP in 2013, as well as a ferocious live presence which has seen the band share stages with the likes of Sunn O))), Earth, Orange Goblin, COC, Church of Misery, Red Fang and more. They have also made highly successful appearances at festivals like Hammerfest, Sonisphere, and Desertfest to persistently lure keen spotlights to their emergence.

For Reign of the Unblinking Eye, The Bendal Interlude took a new tact in its creation; guitarist Stu Taylor explaining recently, “We took a shift in direction when writing for the album Reign of The Unblinking Eye. The songs are much more elaborate and have a lot more going on sound-wise than previous releases. We played with time signatures, guitar harmonies, key changes, even laying down a 10-part resonator guitar part. It is by far the heaviest but also most dynamic thing we’ve written to date.” His words are quickly backed up by the album and a collection of songs which in contrast to the “abstract collection of ideas and imagery based around loose themes” which coloured previous releases, lyrically carry a more “autobiographical approach”.

art_RingMasterReviewBuckfast For Breakfast opens the album, an easily relatable repetitive vocal sample the spark to a wall of cantankerous riffs and rapier like rhythms. It is a senses trespassing confrontation, swiftly bound and veined by wiry grooves with richly engaging toxicity to their wandering sonic hands. The raw vocal squalling of Nat Gavin adds to the intrusive hostility tempering the melodic flirtation and the instinctive swing to the track’s stalking gait. It is an ear gripping start firmly backed by the blues intoxication and fiery rock ‘n’ roll of Losing Things. With Gavin’s caustic delivery, tracks are inevitably going to challenge with attitude loaded animosity yet as proven here, The Bendal Interlude merge it skilfully with a melodic/stoner prowess and addictive sonic contagion which gives every assault a captivating and inviting personality.

Next up is The Unblinking Eye and its initial electronically atmospheric suggestiveness which the track evolves into its own individual stomp of classic/groove metal fuelled ferociousness. It recruits body and imagination with consummate ease, the virulence of the grooves and infectious swing and lead hook of the track swiftly installing it as a major highlight within the album. The Bendal Interlude are rocking like a beast on heat in song and album, sparking similar reactions in the instincts and spirit of the listener.

Efram’s Hands provides a brooding groove entangled landscape of ravenous shadows and barbarous energy straight after whilst Pint of Bodies grumbles and rumbles with sonic and rhythmic rabidity whilst infusing a scent of enterprise not too removed from glam rock. Subsequently descending on the senses with a Down meets Cathedral like animosity before shifting again into an evocative melodic calm, it and its predecessor both whip up more greed for the album’s trespass before Creeks Gigantic prowls in with a thunderous rhythmic swagger led by the bass groove of Tommy Lloyd quickly matched by the resourceful craft and adventure of Taylors’ invention on guitar strings. Given further incendiary bite by the spiky beats of Dave Archer, the track is an imposingly catchy and intrusive weave of contrasting and dynamic textures finding kinship in the tracks’ vocal irritability and tempestuous air.

Anthemic and tenaciously delivered rhythms again lead an addictive and predictably groove infested persuasion as Triumph of Fortitudo steps in with bruising intensity and Cancer Bats like punk lined antagonism before stepping aside for the more merciful but equally commanding rock ‘n roll of The Block. Drama fuels every crawling riff and the doom coated breath which soaks a track layered with acidic grooving and vocal rancor. Maybe not as striking on personal tastes as other tracks within Reign of the Unblinking Eye, it still leaves satisfaction full; success sought and easily found by the closing emotional and creative animus of R.I.P.  An at times corrosive venture through varied styles and flavours within a core heavy rock storm, the song is a fascinating and increasingly impressing end to a similarly impacting release.

As suggested earlier, The Bendal Interlude could have dared to push their imagination even further but every play of Reign of the Unblinking Eye certainly reveals new twists within the all-consuming invasion of sound. Time and attention only benefits an appreciation of an instantly pleasing album which has the psyche and passions enslaved by crucial grooves in no time; a success no one can avoid or dismiss.

Reign of the Unblinking Eye is out now via Black Bow Records @ http://blackbowrecords.bigcartel.com/product/the-bendal-interlude-the-reign-of-the-unblinking-eye

https://www.facebook.com/THEBENDALINTERLUDE   http://thebendalinterlude.bandcamp.com/

Pete RingMaster 01/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Smile Empty Soul – Shapeshifter

smile empty soul shapeshifter album photo_RingMasterReview

April 1st sees the release of a new Smile Empty Soul EP; a release revealing some new encounters and also returning songs feeding the wants of fans. Released in 2003, the Californian rock band’s self-titled debut album is now unobtainable, tied up in “red tape” these past years much to the disappointment of an increasing number wanting to have their own copy. With persistent enquiries about it coming their way, the LA trio were inspired to re-record their three biggest singles from the album and combine them with a similar number of brand new tracks for the Shapeshifter EP which is accompanied by a DVD that includes a music video, a short documentary style film from the making of the EP, and a behind-the-scenes video covering years of touring, studio sessions, music video shoots, and more.

With six albums under their belt, the Smile Empty Soul sound is an established proposition and fair to say Shapeshifter offers no major surprises but the new songs have the freshness and tenacity expected by any offerings from the band whilst the re-worked other songs are simply rousing treats never too hard to enjoy however they are dressed.

All in My Head is the first track on the EP, slipping in on a reserved step with a gentle melody holding court before the recognisable tones of vocalist/guitarist Sean Danielsen and a net of restrained rhythms. It is a suggestive slow stroll which momentarily erupts into an impassioned and sonically fiery flame around the darkly lit lure of Ryan Martin’s bass. The pattern is set for the rest of the track even as its air and energy becomes more volatile as a Sick Puppies like agitation hits voice and sound.

art_RingMasterReviewA great start continues as Running out of Something takes over, it too making a less than imposing entrance but building into a feisty and dramatic proposal as the forceful beats of Jake Kimer collude with rawer sonic rapacity. What seems like electronic beats alongside the drummer’s inventive swings does irritate a touch but cannot defuse the overall roar and creative potency of a song as familiar as it is freshly inventive.

Kimer has ears and appetite on board within seconds of his opening anthemic rally as Just One Place takes attention in hand next; a potent initial coaxing which continues to incite as guitars and vocals cast their expressive energy and enterprise around another pulsating bassline. As its predecessors, the track is as contagious and compelling as it is emotively dramatic, and as the other pair, reveals great signs for things to come from the band ahead.

New tracks completed, that threesome of well-known and spirit rousing singles from the band’s acclaimed first album step forward to thickly please and satisfy, Silhouettes leading the way with Nowhere Kids and Bottom of a Bottle in close attention. As one also not having a copy of their debut, memory suggests the band has not strayed far from the originals but with richer textures and arguably keener creative energy involved, the first seems to have new tension to its character and the second rawer attitude whilst Bottom of a Bottle simply stirs body, emotions, and imagination as virulently as it always does.

Shapeshifter is a release which makes no major demands and uncages no real surprises but leaves no one short of thick enjoyment and a re-ignited eager appetite for the Smile Empty Soul adventure. With that DVD in tow too, the EP is destined to be one greedily devoured proposition.

The Shapeshifter EP is available April 1st via Pavement Entertainment.

http://www.smileemptysoul.com/   https://www.facebook.com/smileemptysoulmusic   https://twitter.com/_smileemptysoul

Pete Ringmaster 01/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Liberty Ship – Learning to Fly

by Ost

by Ost

From a music scene which over the decades has perpetually produced some striking and inventive bands, Sheffield hailing Liberty Ship make a big suggestion that they could be another to add to the list of successes with the release of new single Learning to Fly.

Creating a mix of indie and melodic rock, the band since emerging at the beginning of 2012, has built a potent reputation for their sound and a live presence which has seen them play alongside amongst many the likes of King Charles, Reverend and The Makers, and just recently The Carnabys. They have also opened up the main stage at last year’s Tramlines Festival and found tracks like LibertyShip_LearningToFly__RingMasterReviewWhat Point come under close attention from BBC Introducing Sheffield. Now it is the turn of Learning to Fly to stir up a greater number of ears and fuss the way of the band; a success easy to see being swift and sure.

A guitar jangle entices ears first, swinging rhythms and further melodic enterprise in tow as the lead vocals of acoustic guitarist Lewis Hancock bring their potent tempting and expression to the swiftly brewing party. In no time into a vivacious stroll led by the catchy exploits of lead guitarist Jack Eddison and Hancock’s emotive strums, the song offers up a vibrant and increasingly infectiously proposal akin to a fusion of The Housemartins and The Mighty Lemon Drops.

There is no escaping the catchy prowess and adventure of the song, its melodic eagerness contrasted yet accentuated by the darker roam of James Brown’s bassline and the firmly landing beats of Kierran Bond. It is a captivating mix added to by the great harmonies across the rest of the band which back up Hancock’s lead.

A feel good single sure to enliven the spirit of any day, Learning to Fly has plenty to suggest why there is such a keenly growing awareness around Liberty Ship and to spark an appetite for more of their tenacious rock ‘n’ roll in those it arouses.

Learning to Fly is self-released April 1st @ http://libertyshipband.bandcamp.com/album/learning-to-fly-single

http://www.libertyshipband.com/   https://www.facebook.com/LibertyShipBand/   https://twitter.com/LibertyShipBand

Pete RingMaster 01/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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