The Spider Hole – To the Monsters

The readymade entertainment to grace any Wickerman like pagan ritual or meeting of The Monster Club, The Spider Hole unveil a new carnival of dark deeds and imagination prowling adventures under the guise of To the Monsters. The band casts the listener into the heart of gothic tales and creature stalked escapades across the album’s eleven frightmares, each as compelling and arousing as another and all leaving these ears lustfully desperate for plenty more such devilish trespasses.

Hailing out of Phoenix, Arizona, The Spider Hole create a unique and fascinating sound which beguiled as it surprised with its inherent unpredictability within a voracious rock ‘n’ roll heart across To The Monsters. Inspirations to the band are said to include the likes of Tom Waits, Oingo Boingo, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Primus, The Pixies, Frank Zappa, and The Doors; some of which can be openly sensed within the lure of songs. To that we would suggest there are essences that remind of bands such as Helldorado, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, and even more so at times Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers but all spices in a proposition fiercely individual to The Spider Hole.

A mere breath was all it took for our ears and imagination to be coaxed into life as opener Werewolf Biker Bastard cast swarthy sighs of guitar, Kilen continuing to entice with strands of melodic intimation as the growl of vocalist Ethan Scott began its dark narrative. Keys add to the prelude of the adventure before things erupt into a tenacious stroll with its own eager swagger. Sweltering psych springs colour the climate of intimation as bold rhythms continue to prowl amidst the infectious landscape of suggestion and animation.

The outstanding start to the album is in many ways just an appetiser to things to come, each song setting out its own individual web of craft, magnetism, and dark endeavour as epitomised by next up Still Draw Breath, a slab of primal yet deviously designed rock ‘n’ roll with a blues lining to its rise through dank cold earth. The bass of XerXes Quinn is again a predatory lure easy to succumb to as equally the biting incitement of drummer Bobby Blades; the body secured in their trap as guitar and vocals take care of the imagination with their individual tales. With a Misfits-esque draw to its holler, the track just steals self-control like a puppeteer, bones jerking to his incitement as vocal chords eagerly joined with Scott in the track’s voracious carousing.

Hungover at the Eel God Festival is a far calmer yet almost predacious proposition and it too left body and throat subservient to the thick web of temptation it casts with unscrupulous craft. There is menace in its heart and air to equal the seduction in its sound and stomp, band and album continuing to lead us on a salacious dance before Rock, Your Body sprung its own skilful scheming across a pop fuelled, virulently contagious rock ‘n’ roll saunter. An element of enterprise and contagiousness reminding a touch of Black Space Raiders on their last couple of albums only adds to the increasingly raucous and thrilling emprise of sound and manipulation.

The glorious fevered ballad of Chomp-Chomp is next to ignite the senses and passions, its calling swiftly becoming a boisterous blend of fifties inspired rock ‘n’ roll and Rocky Horror theatre and simply inescapably addictive while The Goat Witch of Cornman Road commands the same rich attention with matching prowess through its crepuscular serenade woven upon a skeleton of big rhythms coated in vocal passion and bound in the sonic and melodic intimation escaping guitar and keys. Both songs simply bewitched though they are still slightly eclipsed by the mighty cavort of The Leviathan Stomp. Bestial yet agile in its dynamics and twists, the track as to be honest all, simply had us gripped in its temptation soaked hands.

The cinematic fears of Devil By a Nail initiate a lively shuffle of funk and psych rock eagerness next, the song casting its own Machiavellian enterprise to enslave ears and involvement before The People Who Come Out of the Ceiling creeps into the psyche where it seduces with a tantalising and mesmeric croon with volatility in dark heart. At certain moments Scott’s ever riveting presence and tones are joined by the delicious lure of female vocals though we cannot give a name to their siren whilst in sound the song simply stalks and prowls with rapacious desire; it all together uniting for our favourite moment within the album.

Night of the Nighty-Night Slasher completes the plethora of ghastly tales, its blood strewn romp a tempestuous roar of Ripper like goodness bringing To The Monsters to a mighty and ravenously rousing close.

There are times when we are truly bowled over and lustfully devour the exploitation of our inherent weakness for rabidly inventive but organically hearted rock ‘n’ roll however it is designed and To The Monsters stamps down one of those; an instinctive love of creepy tales and horror fuelled rascality only added extra icing on the pleasure The Spider Hole has undoubtedly unleashed.

To the Monsters is out now across most stores.

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Pete RingMaster 11/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Deflore/Jaz Coleman – Party In The Chaos

Sometimes you just feel certain link-ups were meant to be, collaborations destined to see the light of day at some point even if no-one realised the possibility. One is definitely that between Italian industrial metallers Deflore and Killing Joke frontman Jaz Coleman. The evidence is there to be heard within Party In The Chaos, a collection of tracks which just roars with the qualities and invention of both sides behind one thrilling encounter.

We will let Coleman tell how the union of the two arose. “Over the last 30 years I’ve been asked one question over and over again: what new band do you like? And the answer generally has been zero, there are not many new bands that I like, except while I was on tour, we played Rome with Killing Joke and the opening act was just stunning. They were so powerful, such epic sounds, so cinematic. The logic seems I have to work with them. So to cut a long story short, Deflore came to Prague and we’ve just done a fantastic EP together, such beautiful music, and I hope everybody gets a listen to this incredible Italian band Deflore!

Consisting of Christian Ceccarelli and Emiliano Di Lodovico, Deflore themselves had been looking for “a singer that could understand our music to give us something more then, unexpectedly, Jaz found us.”  So together they entered Faust Records Studio in Prague in the closing moments of 2017 to record the release, Derek Saxenmeyer mixing the record at Enem Studio mid 2018 with mastering undertaken by Oli Morgan in London at Fluid Mastering.

As soon as opener and EP title track stirs into life that acknowledgement that this unity of creativity was meant to be rises up. Amidst the scorched sigh of guitar, rhythms gather and erupt in an incessant coaxing; a lure within which the riveting grumble of Ceccarelli’s bass finds inspiration in the early releases of their companion’s band. With synth and obviously his distinctive voice, Coleman soon escalates that flavouring, but as quickly the song sets out its own voracious identity, one as raucously infectious as it is dramatically menacing. Di Lodovico’s guitar perpetually escalates the drama and contagion as forcibly as rhythms, its nagging grooves and riffs flirtatious amongst the hypnotic rhythmic incitement. Even so imagination and atmospheric calms have their say on the outstanding track, each of the three stamping their creative authority upon the apocalyptic majesty of song and in turn ears and passions.

Coleman takes to synthesizer and piano for the instrumental, Sunset In The West, which follows; joining the atmospheric intimation and dark shadows similarly woven by Ceccarelli and Di Lodovico alongside. It is a piece the imagination can run with, every listen sparking a new aspect to the dark edge of the elegance and melodic calm it casts. Haunting and at times disturbing but wholly magnetic in its deceptive elegance, the track compelled total attention.

Transhuman World completes the release, its industrial portentousness tempered by a fiery but virulent and catchy web of sound. Coleman returns to vocals as well as on synth as Ceccarelli and Di Lodovico infest the threat and raw seduction of the song with their equally firm Def Con-esque drama and imagination fuelled craft.

It completes a trio of tracks which just command attention and ignite the imagination from first to last breath. Whether this meeting of great talent will rise together again who knows but if not, the Party In The Chaos EP will stand as one of the most potent and striking not forgetting irresistible encounters of recent times.

Party In The Chaos is out now via Subsound Records on CD, LP and digitally; available @ https://deflore.bandcamp.com/

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 Pete RingMaster 11/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright