Joakem – Mind Matter

Mind Matter is the striking debut album from Cyprus-based singer songwriter, composer, keyboardist Joakem; a release which just blossoms and further impresses play by play. Woven in a magnetic blend of progressive rock and metal it shares tapestries of craft and imagination, they all created with an instinct to tempt.

Joakem (Stelios Ioakim), from his beginnings as a classical pianist, has formed and played in a host of bands including alternative rock outfit Slightly Offensive and melodic death metallers Tørment. Musically, as in rich evidence within Mind Matter, he embraces various threads of styles and flavours in his atmospheric and progressively nurtured sound and as proven by his first full length, it makes for one seriously enjoyable proposition.

The album instantly began to keenly lure ears and attention as opener A Peaceful Place teased with rapaciously edged guitar, its full entrance joined by an equally enticing coaxing from keys. Already what proves to be a distinctive flavouring to the latter is working away on a swiftly found appetite before just as potently Joakem’s vocals add to the temptation. Immediately too, there is an infectious touch and tenacity to the song, one which as the track evolves and reveals a wealth of imaginative twists and turns only intensifies while across its irresistible length, various metal bred colours from extreme to melodic ignite progressive rock instincts to create one fascinating and thrilling start to Mind Matter.

The following Resurgence makes a just as persuasive first impression; Joakem’s almost carnival-esque keys dancing with ears and imagination as riffs reveal a similar creative bent. Lively rhythms soon add to the swiftly captivating incitement before an atmospheric calm if one carrying crepuscular shadows, emerges. This in turn breeds a new wave of tenacious enterprise with keys, vocals, and guitar colluding in the casting of a richly compelling aural painting within which its creator’s classical breeding is a perpetual lure as too the Dave Greenfield (The Stranglers) scented those keys.

One of the album’s early singles is next up, Generation Z a fiery fusion of rock and metal with a snarl in its breath and irritability in its body yet equally a song sharing a reflective calm and spirited animation in its respective tempting and rousing roar. Maybe not as immediately gripping as its predecessors, the track only needed one round of its chorus to banish doubts, that carousing bred on the ever alluring presence of Joakem’s voice and keys before Illusory stepped forward to share its own intrigue lined exploits. It too has a dark edge and tone to its bold exploration of a shady world in sound and word but as potently a melodic radiance which only adds to the thick intimation.

Through the constantly tantalising journey of The Path, another previous single which awoke plenty of attention the way of Joakem, and the mercurial trespass of Terra captivation tightened. The superb first of the two is a blend of aggressive disposition and melodic elegance, though charm fuelled by fire bearing melody while its successor shares an instinctive earthiness with almost psychotic inclinations, twisting and turning with almost bedlamic mastery. A track which took a touch longer to persuade in comparison to others, it emerges as another big highlight as Joakem makes use of his obvious vast palette of sound and imagination.

Treacherous is a far less tempestuous affair though it too erupts in a cyclone of composed melodic and metallic fury led by the driven winds of keys. As with all tracks, it fluidly surges and slips through an array of contrasts and contradictions, impressing with its unpredictability and bold imagination before Departure brings it all to a great close. From an evocative caress of piano, the final song serenades and arouses the senses before rising up in virulent coercion of vocal chords and ardour providing a glorious end to an equally magnificent release.

Wrapped in the stirring artwork of Alexandros Papantoniou, at times Mind Matter is simply sublime and in other moments ridiculously captivating, throughout casting a web of easily addictive enterprise which only leads to our recommendation that you go treat yourselves.

Mind Matter is available now for download/streaming on all digital platforms with physical copies available @

http://www.joakem.com/   https://www.facebook.com/joakemmusic   https://twitter.com/joakemmusic

Pete RingMaster 12/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Overt Enemy – Inception

Ahead of a new EP, US thrashers Overt Enemy have just officially released their debut, Inception on Bandcamp and if you missed it upon its initial outing last year via Confused Records there is little excuse to make the same mistake again. Acknowledged as “the best Slayer tribute in North America” the Mission, Texas based band provides three original tracks upon their first EP which command, no demand eager attention.

Formed in 2013, Overt Enemy have proceeded to share stages with the likes of Accused A.D., Angkor Wat, Confused, Panteon, X.I.L, Severance, and Sons of Texas, their reputation growing along with an inclination to focus on creating original music. As mentioned the band is currently working on their follow-up release, Possession being recorded with producer/engineer Joshua Lopez (Immortal Guardian), and you can imagine that its anticipation will only be increased with this reboot of Inception.

The EP opens up with Mercenary and from the off has ears involved as wiry strands of enticing guitars cloak disorder carrying samples. Swiftly the suggestive threat and intrigue of those initial lures are taken up by rolling beats, drummer Jaime Ayala further fuelling the song’s immediate drama before the great trespassing vocals of Leo Ortiz launch their threat and accusation in the midst of his and fellow guitarist Rob Hahn’s riffs and incursive grooves. It is a great, rousing start to the release only enhanced by the throbbing grumbling mumble of Slayerella’s brooding bass.

Political Cancer follows with the bass an instant dark incitement before the citric melodic enterprise of guitar wind around surging riffs. Though there is an immediate urgency to the song it manages to prowl, indeed stalk the listener throughout as Ortiz’s tones harass and arouse. In time the track does throw off its reins and goes for the jugular to only escalate its incitement and the resulting pleasure.

The EP’s title track is next, Inception sidling up to the listener on a web of guitar wiring courted by heavy breaths. Enticement and threat colours every bit of the coaxing, its intrigue generating greater interest and involvement as the instrumental invades, intimates, and then slips away leaving thoughts locked in their own conjuring.

Completed by radio edits of the first two tracks, Inception is a potent and thickly enjoyable introduction to Overt Enemy. They may have a great reputation playing Slayer tracks but if this EP is a sign of things to come they will be breeding one just as strong for their own invention.

The Inception EP is available now @

http://overtenemy.com/   https://www.facebook.com/overtenemy/   https://twitter.com/OvertEnemyBand

Pete RingMaster 12/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright