King Hiss – Mastosaurus

Pic:  christophe brysse

Pic: christophe brysse

Severely hooked by their debut release, the epic 2013 Snakeskin EP and fully wrapped up in the creative confines of debut album Sadlands the following year, it is fair to say that anticipation for the second full-length from King Hiss was as eager as for anything else offered this year. Mastosaurus does not disappoint either, quickly confirming existing thoughts that this is a band not only going places but on the point of major recognition while revealing a new creative plateau to their rousing songwriting and sound.

Formed in 2011, with a line-up seeing guitarist Joost Noyelle, vocalist Jan Coudron, and the rhythmic might of bassist Dominiek ‘Visioene’ Hoet and drummer Jason Bernard linking up, Belgium hailing King Hiss quickly began making a strong impression with their striking mix of rapacious riffs and murderous rhythms. As shown by the previously mentioned releases, it was a proposal helping the band earn a powerful reputation and acclaiming attention, for their live presence and sound and records. Mastosaurus is bound for greater success and spotlights as King Hiss reveal a new imagination and craft in songwriting and its rousing results. A concept album portraying the epic adventures of a doomed antihero, it storms ears from its first breath with songs which are as fearsomely meaty as they are imaginatively infectious and beguiling. Throughout grooves entangle the body and infiltrate the psyche as rhythms and riffs devour; fiery melodic interplay a lava-esque hue to the anthemic roar on offer track after track.

The album opens up with Homeland, the creaking wood of a ship luring prowling riffs which in turn align to a sonic fuzziness around a heavy portentous bassline. It is an intriguing start, a muggy opening coming further alight as Coudron’s impressive delivery enters the quickly set affair. Heated grooves bring an Alice In Chains like essence to the dark tempest brewing within ears, a thick smog of emotion and intensity as catchy as it is threatening. Eventually it ignites in a volcanic assault that simply blisters and captivates before making way for the even more impressive attack of Tourniquet. Straight away intoxicating wiry grooves are gripping and seducing the imagination, their exploits matched by the great harmonies and growling bassline surrounding Coudron’s ever compelling presence. There is no escaping another AIC/Queens Of The Stone Age flavouring in a track which is almost bestial as it makes its infectious and formidable King Hiss distinct presence.

kinghiss_mastosaurus_artwork_RingMasterReviewThe outstanding Black Sea, Slow Death comes next, part shanty part stoner infused rock ‘n’ roll, it takes the contagious elements of its predecessors turning them virulent around a vocally driven, melodically suggestive drama. There is something familiar to the song, something which often occurs across Mastosaurus, and is soon realised as being the inventive juice of the band which previously made their earlier encounters stand out, just in a more enterprisingly imposing and striking form now.

The rhythmic thunder of Bernard brings We Live in Shadows to life and to glory next, his swinging tenacity matched in temptation by the sonic flames of Noyelle as Coudron roars with evocative expression while the album’s title track similarly sees the drummer unleash the most anthemic prowess as danger and tempestuous suggestion surrounds him. The track is soon a blaze of vocal and sonic fire as a stormy barrage of riffs and those rousing beats descend; the song just as venomous in its calmer trespasses through eager ears. Mastosaurus is pure creative drama which even if it does not have the body throwing itself around has the imagination and passions twisted around its little finger.

The initial acoustic coaxing of Stuck in a Hole leads into another swarm of melodic incitement, they in turn slipping into gentle seduction before their captivating kindling erupts into an incendiary roar; proceeding to smoulder and ignite again and again across the mighty track. The song is further confirmation of the new diversity and invention in the textures and ideation making up the album’s songs, that essence just as ripe within successor Egomaniac; two and a half minutes of ferocious breath-taking sinew driven rock ‘n’ roll with its own style of voracious contagiousness.

Both Renegade with its rich bluesy atmosphere and ridiculously persuasive chorus and the antagonistic nature of Killer Hand further ignite hungry ears and an already greedy appetite for Mastosaurus, the second of the two especially momentous in the soundscape of the perpetually riveting and galvanic release. As all tracks, each invites and receives bold participation before Requiem for the Lost brings the mighty encounter to a startling close. With a grouchy resonance to keys and an emotionally raw melodic touch which at times with no word of a lie reminds of Wings, the instrumental is a melodramatic and melancholic epilogue to the tale and triumph before it.

Mastosaurus is exceptional and increasingly so with every listen as it reveals fresh textures and layers to its turbulent, often rabid, and constantly explosive body. King Hiss is ready to challenge to the frontline of European metal/rock with an album many bands there will only wish they had in their arsenal.

Mastosaurus is out now digitally @ https://kinghiss.bandcamp.com/album/mastosaurus and physically @ http://bit.ly/1PhHbS1

http://www.king-hiss.com   http://www.facebook.com/kinghissband    http://www.twitter.com/kinghissband

 Pete RingMaster 08/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hello Bear – I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?

hello-bear-promo-shot_RingMasterReview

A trap waiting to grab your imagination and energy, I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? more than lives up to its title with its bouncy persona and rousing spirit. The new EP from British quartet Hello Bear, the four-track stomp is a sparkling burst of power/punk pop which may not carry major surprises but is as fresh and vibrant as anything escaping the year so far.

Formed in 2010, the Norwich bred band take inspiration found in the likes of Weezer, Pavement, Los Campesinos!, Refused, The Bronx, Presidents of the USA, McFly, Johnny Foreigner, and Dananananaykroyd into their own highly flavoursome exploits. Invigorating as a live presence which has seen Hello Bear play with bands such as Los Campesinos, Coasts, Darwin Deez, The Futureheads, and The King Blues, their sound is an ear grabber which now refuses to be ignored within the band’s new offering. The press release accompanying the EP suggests it carries “their most exciting material to date.” Being our introduction to Hello Bear it is hard to confirm or argue, but exciting the Lee Batiuk (Deaf Havana, Trash Boat, Hopeless Records) produced release is and relentlessly enjoyable.

I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? opens up with new single We Held Hands Once, But Then She Got Embarrassed, the collective energy and enterprise of Luke Bear (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Mary Bear (guitar), Tom Bear (bass), and Daryl Bear (drums) hitting the floor running. A lone strum entices first being quickly joined by the potent tones of Luke before the song jumps on ears with eager riffs and canny rhythms. In no time it is into an infectious stroll with hooks and melodies uniting to charm attention before brewing and finally expelling a virulent contagion through its irresistible chorus. There is no escaping joining those offering Blink 182 meets Weezer as a reference for the tenaciously lively sound of song and band; add a touch of Super Happy Fun Club and The All-American Rejects though and the mix is even closer to the rousing incitement.

hello-bear-cover-artwork_RingMasterReviewThe following Mmm Cheque Please! makes a just as striking entrance, another single strain of guitar bait making the first lure, rampant beats and Luke’s inviting vocals the next  before it all blooms into another infectious canter. Daryl’s beats resonate as they land and Tom’s basslines grumble as much as they seduce while Mary and Luke share a tapestry of hooks and melodic endeavour which only leads to a greater appetite for song and release. Admittedly the track lacks the final spark which ignites its predecessor but leaves pleasure bubbling eagerly as does Dirty Weekend with its more restrained but wholly magnetic presence. Repeating a prowess which confirms Hello Bear masterful at creating big choruses and ripe hooks which simply infest the psyche, the song lays lustfully upon the senses.

The EP ends as its starts with a track which just whips up the passions. Attack Hug Influences is addiction for the ears, a slice of rock pop which seizes hold of body and spirit in a breathless romp complete with spicy hooks, tenacious rhythms, and a vocal coaxing which virtually forces listener involvement.

It is a boisterous end to a release which demands a party is woven around its presence each and every time. No moments of major uniqueness, all irresistible fun fuelled ingenuity; that is I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?, one of the most enjoyable adventures this year.

I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? is released November 11th

http://www.hellobear.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/hellobear/    https://twitter.com/hellobearband

Pete RingMaster 08/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hypophora – Youth / Caught

hypophora-temp-promo-shot_RingMasterReview

Hailing from the beautiful Cornish county town of Truro, Hypophora has been picking up attention and praise since emerging in 2012 and especially over the past couple of years as they earned a reputation for being one dynamic live proposition. Now the British quartet is tapping on national awareness with their new double A-sided single Youth / Caught.

Taking inspiration from various Seattle grunge/early 2000s post-hardcore bands, Hypophora create a punk infused alternative rock roar just as ripe with melodic invention and funk bred infection. As suggested its anthemic potency has helped see the band a notable prospect and export from the UK’s south western tip. Live the band has shared stages with the likes of LTNT, Allusondrugs, The Hyena Kill, and Narcs among many. Ahead of a UK tour, Hypophora are laying down a strong invitation with their new Easy Action Records released single, a proposal which reveals a potential which demands it is taken notice of.

hypophora-cover-artwork_RingMasterReviewYouth instantly engages with hardy beats and a senses grasping web of grooves. Cast by Karum Cooper, they wind around ears with melodic suggestiveness growing a funky nature as the growling bassline of Lewis Pilcher and the swinging rhythms of drummer Jim Richardson collude with the vocals of Katie McConnell. She has an expressiveness and emotion to her voice, backed in strength by Cooper, which pulls you into the song where the band shows their imaginative enterprise. The track does not exactly leap out from the speakers but rather creeps up on the appetite for a lingering tempting that incites a need for closer involvement.

The same applies to Caught, a similarly restrained roar which rumbles and blossoms with a tempestuousness which unites perfectly with the evocative melodies and vocal passion shaping the magnetic encounter. It continues to ebb and flow with intensity throughout, darker rhythmic hues flirting with ears and the catchy character of an increasingly captivating track.

The single is the introduction of Hypophora to a wider audience which may not explode into view but creates an intrigue which only leads to a want to further explore the inescapable promise and swiftly enjoyable sound of the rising four-piece.

Youth / Caught is released November 11th via Easy Action Records.

https://www.facebook.com/hypophora   https://www.instagram.com/hypophoramusic/  https://twitter.com/hypophoramusic

Pete RingMaster 08/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Thirteen Shots – Self Titled

13 Shots_RingMasterReview

Though the band is no longer active, the hunger and want for Thirteen Shots continues to be vocal. The new release of a self-titled compilation album is a dose of their raw and voracious horror punk sure to be devoured and earn many more belated fans as it treats ears to the best of the band as a free proposal. Bringing together fifteen tracks spanning the band’s releases, one previously unreleased track, and an irresistible live take of the band’s mighty track Graveyard Stomp, the album is an offer no fan or horror punk loving newcomer to the British outfit should and will be able to resist.

Formed by the now Hamburg, Germany residing Johnny Rose and featuring Lewis Manchip, George Chick, Joe Dempster, Chelsea McCammon, and Tom Fenn in its line-ups, the Birmingham hailing Thirteen Shots unleashed a distinct and rousing form of rock ‘n’ roll as seeded in sixties garage rock and blues as horror punk itself. From debut album Vaudeville of 2012, through subsequent releases such as Tales That Start With A Whisper the following year, the 2014 White Noise EP, and their final outing through second album Black Smiles last year Thirteen Shots pushed their boundaries and expanded their sound without losing the incisive rough diamond roar which marked them out from day one. The new compilation brings it all into one thrilling place; all together for one final stomp.

First track is the fiery rock ‘n’ roll of Cobradeer, an encounter which flies from the traps, drops into a predacious prowl before bursting into a rush of fiercely slapping rhythms and ferocious riffs led by the distinct vocals of Rose. It provided a rousing introduction to Black Smiles originally and makes the same attention grabbing impact here before passing ears over to the flesh dropping infections of band classic Zombies From The USSR. Cored by a delicious Caped Crusader like hook, the track expels raptorial grooves and vocal incitement in a battle cry/warning rising up against undead hordes which just gets under the skin and into the psyche.

cover_RingMasterReviewThe variety in the band’s sound has been an open book and illustrated in the garage blues blaze of Nekrosexual and the following drama of Bewitched as well as across the album. The first is a scuzzy roar while the second again uncovering a hook which just fits an eager appetite, uncages predatory basslines and irritable riffs as Rose scowls in the colourful horror punk confines of the excellent encounter.

Within the Thirteen Shots catalogue numerous tracks were like beacons to their presence and sound, arguably the most tempting being Danzig. A tribute to the obvious, the song is a swinging punk brawl wearing its influence clearly but casting is own horror punk ‘n’ roll character with more hooks and temptations than a stripper at a fishing convention.

Punk rock in varying degrees is also an ever present in the band’s sound, Get In My Crypt for example simply fuelled by it in its virulent charge wrapped in metallic flames while other songs like Night Of Sin infuses it into their own individual imaginations, it a liquor soaked blues rock proposal with searing grooves and restrained but heavy rhythms. The outstanding Dead Girls Don’t Scream takes the vital essence into a psychobilly spiced romp, like Misfits meets Resurex while wearing a New York Dolls t-shirt. It is also another of those songs which the band is particularly memorable and noted for, a rock ‘n’ roll stomp to get lustful over.

Through the writhing blues grooved Padded Cell Blues, the scuzzy heavy metal Sabbath-esque riff loaded crawl of Doom, and the severely infectious rockabilly lined stroll of First American Sweetheart, the album does what all good compilations should do; reveal and celebrate the depth and invention of its focus. The last of the trio especially whips up the spirit with its hard rock grooves and garage punk contagion offering something akin to Turbonegro meets The Heartbreakers.

Grooves are equally a major tempting within next up Tales That Start With A Whisper, twisting within ears with salacious intent as the track shares classic/glam rock misbehaviour equipped with the spiciest hooks before Black Eyed Girl enters with a flirtatious and slightly sinister prowl like a dark dusted feline seductress swinging melodic hips to blues bred flames.

There have been a few songs from the band too which have blossomed to greater heights over listens rather than with an instantaneous convincing; the raw shuffle of Black Smiles being one which proves its point perfectly amongst its companions on the album though gaining its first ever outing here, Creak’n The Coffin needs little time to grab ears and the passions. A contagious punk driven slab of rock ‘n’ roll, it stomps and roars with all the flavours the band has consistently shown itself so adept at weaving into their raucous proposals.

The album is completed by the sultry blood red romance of Lost Soul with its mariachi laced smoulder and finally that stomping live roar of Graveyard Stomp, which while drawing eager participation, reminds us what we are all missing from the band at each and every venue they graced.

There are certainly tracks we would have added to the album, This Looks Like A Job For Batman for one, but Thirteen Shots is undoubtedly the life and creative voice of the band to a tee and a certain must for all punk ‘n’ roll fans. Go check it out and grab a rare and free treat @ http://thirteenshots.bandcamp.com/ with a possible very ltd edition CD possible if demand is high and similarly a final UK tour from the band if they are wanted; so go tell them @ https://www.facebook.com/thirteenshotsband

Thirteen Shots is also available for FREE from Google Play and available to stream from Spotify and Deezer from Undead Artists.

Pete RingMaster 09/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright