A few weeks back, UK rockers TARRASKA released their debut album, a self-titled collection of tracks which followed a set of singles that had sparked plenty of attention and praise the way of the South coast outfit. Fair to say, keen anticipation has risen around the arrival of the band’s first full-length and just as valid to say that it delivers one richly enjoyable collaboration of ears and sound.
Releasing their first single, Trailblazer, in 2020, Tarraska emerged from the creative union of Jack Lande and Ben Parker who had performed as an acoustic duo from 2014. With a rock instinct growing in their music, the pair formed the band with its official unveiling coming in a year before that first single, its live line-up by 2021completed by drummer Allan Varnfield and in turn bassist Ollins Lande. The band’s first trio of singles set the tone for their music and the drawing of fans to their mix of classic, hard and modern rock; enticement which has firmly been in escalation courtesy of their full-length.
With inspirations drawn from the likes of Alter Bridge, Foo Fighters Aerosmith, and FFDP among others, the band’s sound has an open familiarity to it yet it is as fresh in craft and enterprise as it is adept in springing surprises and senses rousing enticement. There is an old friend breath to its songs making the album easily accessible but a companion taking ears and the imagination to new adventurous places of individuality.
Pretty much from the first few breaths of album opening Sins of The Other attention was glued to the release, the track emerging from the distance with fertile grooves and forceful rhythms. Straightaway there was a predacious edge to the song which soon entertained the just as potent tones of Lande. Melodic flames bound the subsequent chorus which subsequently erupted, its blaze as infectious as the track’s trespass and another turn in the landscape and proposal of the song.
It is a great start which just as firmly continues with the confrontational and slightly agitated Renegade. Intimately reflective with volatility in its heart and creativity, the song’s presents a mercurial landscape of reflective calm, raw tempestuousness and invasive contagion. It is a swiftly addictive proposal, erupting on the senses like a cyclone but equally offering eye of the storm like respite to stake a best track suggestion.
Shifting Gears is next up, a song written pre Tarraska by Lande and Parker but now enjoying a new lease of dynamic life with the latter’s guitar spinning a web of enterprise and temptation around intrusive but spirit sparking rhythms and incitement bearing vocals. Hungrily it had us hooked just as Getting Out Alive with its hard rock breeding and rock ‘n’ roll instincts. It is another which feels an easy fit for ears and familiarity yet nurtures nothing less than new pleasure and zeal loaded participation before White Flower calms the beast with its melodic charm and melancholic contemplation. A ballad with tension in its breath and a classic rock inclination in its plaintive cry, the song simply held court as keenly as those before it.
The band’s first single, Trailblazer proves just as commanding of attention and appetite as the first time it emerged, its blaze of sound and emotive flames a searing spark for the senses and again easy participation while Say No Prayer cast classic rock/metal instincts through its robust stroll. It is not a track which hit the spot as directly as those around it yet our roar with its chorus proved it was another manipulative enjoyment especially with its subsequent imagination prowling lures.
Another favourite track moment came with the glorious Requiem, a lament and musing for those dearly departed and a hug for emotive comfort, its subsequent out cries a cathartic release while the pair of Down Below and Run For Your Life respectively brought shades of classic rock flavoured tempting to get involved with. The first springs a Whitesnake/ Mötley Crüe like roar which just ticked the box while its successor with similar inclinations found a grungier edge to its classic rock ‘n’ roll breeding.
Prose epitomizes the rich songwriting of Lande and Parker and equally their guitar’s melodic touch and vocal prowess, the ballad a source of introspective thanks bearing musing and power ballad intensity leaving a potent mark within the release before Chimera brings the album to a fine close with its mercurial soundscape. Seeming like it is going for the throat initially the song evolves through mellow rumination to emotional outcry and fiery uproar. It is a track which embraces varied flavours and styles in its body much as the album itself.
As much as TARRASKA has made a potent introduction to themselves with earlier singles, the band’s debut album is a far greater proposal for the UK rock scene and major attention.
The self-titled TARRASKA album is out now through Earache Digital Distribution; available across most major stores.
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Pete RingMaster 25/08/2022
Copyright RingMaster Review
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