Weird Omen – Surrealistic Feast

Simultaneously offering a haunting bordering on nightmarish temptation alongside a warm seductive tonic for the senses, the rock ‘n’ roll of French trio Weird Omen has always been a magnetic lure but within new album Surrealistic Feast reveals itself a sonically perceptual anomaly as it casts the listener adrift on a purgatory sea of addictive wonder. Try pinning the band’s sound down and you will flounder on the rocks of defeat but there is no missing its instinctive fascination and rousing prowess as proven within their new adventure of captivating strangeness.

Surrealistic Feast is the third full-length from the threesome of baritone saxophonist Fred Rollercoaster (King Khan and the Shrines, Bee Dee Kay and the Roller Coaster…), guitarist/vocalist Sister Ray (Ray and the Dead Drums…), and drummer/vocalist Remi Pablo (Escobar, Anomalys…) basking in a sound which has perpetually grown and boldly explored new realms by the record. It is a proposition as raw as it is radiant, a fusion of garage rock and punk with psych and neo psych tendencies amidst dark punk ‘n’ roll inclinations but a sound which still emerges outside of that broad decades embracing suggestion. Now within Surrealistic Feast it flourishes like never before, every song an individual collusion of flavours emerging pure and unique Weird Omen.

A Place I Want To Know starts things off, immediately the growly tone of Rollercoaster’s sax infesting ears and appetite from within cavernous surroundings. Swiftly the nagging beats of Pablo eagerly pester as too the predacious jangle of guitar from which a delicious melodic siren rises. The beauty of the track is sublime, its welcome harassment irresistible and fiery nature thrillingly rapacious; the outstanding opener a mix of raw aural tocsin magnificence and similarly alluring vocal persuasion.

The following Wild Honey makes just as much of a teasing and tempting start, beats a trigger to sonic hunger and the quickly blasting flames of addiction brewing sax. Whether returning to the Weird Omen sound or making Surrealistic Feast an introduction, the husky lure of its voice is unavoidable and persistent manna to these ears but just as powerfully matched as bait by the scything rhythms of Pablo and Ray’s melodically acidic and lustrous infestations as epitomised in the second track. Its rumble is open but controlled, underpinning the virulence swirling above and channelled into a vocal incitement impossible to leave alone.

Celestial heights are ventured once more through Please Kill Me, its prowling flight a sizzling wind of psych fuzz and sinister rock ‘n’ roll. At times it merges gothic psychobilly reminding of The Orson Family and the scorched punk of The Scaners to its compelling body, all the while niggling away at the imagination before Earworm uncages its own feral swing. Echoing the grungy wildness of Escobar in its breath, the track is a cyclone of salacious garage rock as punked up as it is melodically caustic and more than living up to its moniker.

The album’s title track is next, Surrealistic Feast a devious serenade cored by a rhythmic predation which controls the underbelly of mania eager to share its psychosis. The dual vocal incitement of Ray and Pablo circumvents skin effortlessly as beats hold limbs subservient, greed and imagination instantly enthralled and ever lustful through the rasping quirts of sax. The track is pure devilment, demonic sound at its most improper.

The sixties garage rock lined Collection Of Regrets brings its own individual temptations quickly after, its mellow hunting pop catchiness aligned to earthy untamed boisterousness while successor, The Goat, swings in with an old school rock ‘n’ roll and blues nurtured swagger; a hungry strut interrupted by punk brewed ferity from time to time with every corruption leaving greater creative savagery. Both tracks had us bouncing in various states of pleasure as too did the dirt encrusted pop ‘n’ roll of Trouble In My Head, a track resembling something akin to The 13th Floor Elevators immersed in the organic infectiousness of Thee Exciters and the untamed aberrance of The Mummies.

The composed yet twisted stomp of Out Of My Brain had attention locked within seconds of its hypnotic stroll, only gripping tighter as its aggression and mania escalated before leaving album closer, I Will Write You Poetry to pick up the pieces which it does with ease with its trash coated melodic croon.

Weird Omen can pretty much be trusted to constantly provide an unpredictable escape and adventure which arouses, disturbs, and leads the listener to realms of sonic curiosity and inimitable temptation; this time it comes in one glorious escapade going by the name of Surrealistic Feast.

Surrealistic Feast is out now via Dirty Water Records; available @ https://weirdomen.bandcamp.com/album/surrealistic-feast and https://www.dirtywaterrecords.co.uk/shop/#!/Weird-Omen/c/32921273/offset=0&sort=normal

 https://www.facebook.com/weirdomentheband/

Pete RingMaster 28/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Stoor – Fleam

Though addictions are triggered early on they seem to put on truly inescapable nagging shackles over time but there is one for us which was immediate, thickly gripping and has just squeezed the life out of free will ever since and that is the new album from Scottish outfit Stoor. Admittedly the seeds had been sown and blossomed already for the Dundee quartet’s unique sound through their 2015 uncaged self-titled debut album but a craving Fleam has now escalated to all devouring heights. Like the last and first thought around sleep will be of a true if maybe unattainable love, right now our every musical urge starts and ends with Stoor.

It is hard to believe that Stoor is still not a band eagerly on the lips of thick waves of indie, rock, and post punk fans after their striking first full-length but surely a puzzle going to be solved through the aberrantly extraordinary Fleam. Again bred in a sound which has echoes and inspirations of seventies/eighties post punk and rawer new wave antics, Fleam has discovered a whole new level of virulence in the hooks, melodies, and imagination which made up its predecessor. It is a mischievously multi-flavoured experience though which leaves predictability and expectations barren on the kerbside of its compelling adventure.

Released through Stereogram Recordings who are ever reliable to bring fascinating proposals to the ears, Fleam opens with the appetite securing instrumental simply called Stoor Theme. As the album’s title represents, the band’s fresh sound strikes at the heart and cuts through the thick, wasteful but deceptive excesses which fatten the success and manipulate the common ear into providing undeserved attention and through the simple but incisive groove ‘n’ roll of its initial offering makes the first hook loaded score.

It is an imagination sparking, body twisting coaxing quickly matched in craft and temptation by successor, Pain. Instantly there is an air of sonic vexation from which a bold and boisterous stroll swings forth wrapped in the wiry enterprise of guitarists Ross Matheson and Davie Young whilst driven by the tenacious rhythms of drummer Scott McKinlay and bassist Stef Murray. The track was soon scooping up lusty attention and even more so as it twisted through a great and devilish pop infested post punk escapades within its undiluted rock ‘n’ roll. With Murray’s lead vocals just as magnetic and persuasive to participation, the track easily stole the passions.

It is a success soon shared across Fleam starting with the pair of Lovebombing and Dig. The first comes equipped with danger and threat as well as another dose of pure musical contagion that infests ears and instincts. Nurtured in punk ‘n’ roll ferocity and armed with a lyrical prowess which grips as effortlessly as the feral sounds surrounding it, the track simply enslaved before the second of the two sauntered in and exploded in a flame of melodic discord and eccentric invention. With a breath akin to The Nightingales in league with Television Personalities to it, the track burrowed under the skin laying bait and temptation which for just over two minutes feasted on any possible resistance to its esurient endeavour.

Ark follows, its opening lure loaded croon posted in a dusty mono background before eventually leaping through ears with Murray’s tones riding its undisturbed stride. Within, the primal edge to his bass is just as appetising but equally so are the strands of sonic thread igniting the senses courtesy of the rapaciously enterprising guitars; it all seemingly imposing greater temptation as the track’s volatility ignites and erupts in a predatory trespass.

Dancing around as the world crumbles, new single Atrocities is next and immediately has the body bouncing and imagination flirting with its XTC/ Orange Juice-esque celebration bred in a Fire Engines tuned jangle cast amidst the howl of windy discordance and apocalyptic corruptions. Haunting and rousing from its first sonic rattle, its uninhibited dust finally settles as the adventurous exploits of Agags Groove steps forth. As ever the persistently captivating and manipulative beats of McKinlay steer an inescapable quest for band and listener, the instrumental simply a web of intimation and temptation spanning past decades of flavouring woven into its own unique espionage.

McKinlay is even more a puppeteer within Founding Father, straight away directing body movement with provocative craft which soon invites guitars and bass to add their own similarly devious ideation and touch. Celestial melodies subsequently escape to expand the fascination and draw of another sublimely delicious moment within Fleam, the track as seductive as it is a cauldron of disquiet and dark suggestion before the following Unlike Them brings a declaration of defiance, anarchy and musical insurrection to bear on an apathetic landscape.

The album concludes with the incendiary magnificence of Chivers; a tapestry of rhythmic stalking, carnivorous basslines, and melodic friction united in irresistible incitement further loaded by thought grabbing vocals. Lure and challenge, a term which can be applied to the whole of the release, the song is unapologetic slavery and a glorious close to the album, its mercurial but always agitational and rousing body pure inspirational pleasure.

If Stoor had been there helping drive the Scottish post punk/postcard scene way back they would be cited as an inspiration for so many just as Orange Juice, The Fire Engines, and Josef K but do not confuse that suggestion with thoughts that the band is not one of music’s most fresh and exciting propositions right now and with releases like Fleam you can be sure they will be inspiring the creativity in numerous propositions to come.

Fleam is released on white and black vinyl, CD, and download via Stereogram Recordings March 30th across numerous online stores including https://stoor1.bandcamp.com/ with a special album launch show at Dundee’s Beat Generator Live! the release night.

https://www.facebook.com/stoormusic/   https://twitter.com/STOOR44   http://www.stereogramrecordings.co.uk/artists/stoor/

Pete RingMaster 26/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Obzerv – Acherontia Atropos

Praise and acclaim always has more force when it is delivered with a flurry of excitement and this is the fuel to our words on the new album from Greek metallers Obzerv. A ferocious cauldron come unpredictable kaleidoscope of sound embracing a broad landscape of metal, Acherontia Atropos is an irresistible voracious predator revelling in a world heading to its own end of days.

Maybe the triumph of Acherontia Atropos is not as major surprise as it could have been thanks to a debut album five years ago which awoke the metal scene to the Rethymno, Crete hailing outfit. Released via Greek label Trailblazer Records, it too garnered potent attention and recognition the way of the band but in hindsight merely sowed the seeds to the ravenous craft, ruthless temptation, and imagination bred agility of its successor.

Cast in the threads of modern metal lined with progressive imagination and rich technical dexterity, and with glorious artwork to match, Acherontia Atropos needed mere breaths to have ears and intrigue closely involved as opener, That Defining Moment followed its initial coaxing sonic lures with an imposing trespass of power and sound. Despite the threat of that thick infringement there is only invitation to its nature and adventure in the textures making up its incitement. Dextrous rhythms drive and shape the compelling wall of sound, they too as tempting in their swing as punishing in a touch bound in the compelling, bewitching wires of guitar. With the equally ravening tones of Nikos soon adding their dissonance, it is a creative maelstrom which proved very easy to be sucked into.

A riveting rousing start to the album not to mention an appetite inflaming one, it is backed up by the just as dynamic Apex Predator. The tapestry of style and imagination of the first is matched in the individual character and presence of the second, a track even more feral and craving in its gait and urgency. Essences of death, groove and progressive metal, to mention just a few, unite in the track’s creative web; it’s stabbing riffs, bass groove, and sonic lattice of flavours casting an adroit tempest which effortlessly got under the skin.

Mother Nature Is a Serial Killer followed with a gentle coaxing of the senses, the melodic beckoning of guitar a quickly captivating intimation within which a surge of riffs brews, coming closer by the half breath before leading in another entangled incitement of texture, sound, and discontent; the latter a fire of vocal enmity. Of course as the song evolves cleaner and harsher elements become involved as that unpredictability already invigorating the first pair infests song and imagination to magnetic effect; it’s still discontent soaked calms as poignant and striking as its hostile ravishes of ears. Obzerv’s sound is wonderfully hard to pin down in a few words and the multi-flavoured roar of this song just epitomises that inescapable lure.

New single Agitated is next up and in comparison makes a far more familiar and straight forward proposition though subsequent swirling grooves and unstable movement in rhythms and gait soon bring a strong temptation to the boil. Eventually rolling with almost barbarous appetite, bass and drums enslaved as sonic discord unites with melodic acidity around again a great mercurial vocal delivery; together all flourishing in ebbs and flows of capricious enterprise and threat.

Lyrical and vocal exploration of apocalyptic and nightmarish depths in a self-destructing world is as unappeasable as daring is dauntless in the surround sounds; both in full bloom within the epic Overthrown. Over nine minutes of the darkest shadows and intent it is a track as prone to be claustrophobic and suffocating as it is melodically seductive and imaginatively mesmeric. Volatility lines every second and breath, the track ever ready to scar and blister as it is to melodically romanced and imaginatively compelled eager attention. At its vast length maybe it is a touch too long yet with every inventive note and resourceful intrusion it is impossible to say it came anywhere near to outstaying is welcome or left intrigue looking ahead.

Through the rapacious rock ‘n roll bred corrosive metal conflagration of Thought and Voice and the prowling doom aired, carnivorously devouring Desensitise, the album gripped with tighter tenacity; both tracks riveted in their individual and imaginatively twisted clamours of observational restlessness, sonic exasperation and downright animosity aiding the second as it provided another major moment among plenty across the release.

The final incensed dance of Acherontia Atropos begins with Stage Chrysalis, a track which initially simmers in sonic and melodic vexing before emerging a searing caustic serenade, and closes with the predatory stalking of the listener that is Plot Twist. A track which discontentedly prowls even when unleashing its more physical rancour, it makes for a glorious, manipulative infestation of body and senses and indeed for a striking conclusion to one thrilling encounter.

We expect Acherontia Atropos to lead Obzerv into major European recognition and certainly into the greedy clutches of a whole new horde of fans; we suggest being among them.

Acherontia Atropos is released April 5th with pre-ordering now available @ https://obzerv.bandcamp.com/album/acherontia-atropos

https://www.facebook.com/obzervband    http://obzervband.com/

Pete RingMaster 21/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Upanishad – Crossroad

Its press release calls Crossroad, the debut album from Italian outfit Upanishad, “…a trip, an adventure, physical and dreamlike.” It has also been a journey for the band to reach the point of its release and a collection of ups and downs with experiences which have undoubtedly gone into one fascinating, captivating, and refreshingly imaginative encounter.

Hailing from Florence, Upanishad began in 2000 and quickly began breeding their own unique sound from a blend of rock, punk and indie flavours. The following decade saw a first EP which sparked attention and opportunities, departures and additions to the band’s line-up, and live success leading to greater moments and chances. The departure of members in 2010 as the band prepared work on a first album saw Upanishad go on hiatus for a couple of years before two of its founders in vocalist/guitarist Vanni Raul Bagaladi and drummer Lapo Zini resurrected the project; bringing in bassist Mirko Bazzocchi to complete the band’s line-up. Quickly writing new songs, the band found, whilst still embracing those earlier hues that their sound was quickly embracing a new and richer as well as broader flavoured character with bold imagination aligned to technical adventure. It is a mix now making their debut full-length one truly fascinating proposal and one which just seems to grow in ears and appetite by the play.

Crossroad opens up with Look At You and instantly had attention on board as the bass of Bazzocchi alone lays down enough intrigue carrying bait to hook any appetite. A sonic swirl gathers in the background as it beckons, eventually sparking a further melodic enticement through the guitar of Bagaladi whose vocals I turn make swift company to the already magnetic incitement. Though slim in body it is a union thick in spicing and tempting which revels in the web of hues making up increasingly and creatively agitated not forgetting irresistible rock ‘n’ roll.

This Room follows and instantly hits its own alluring stroll with unpredictability oozing from every pore, a proposal gaining momentum by the second as the song grows, twists and reveals its mischievous invention. Like a fusion of T-Rex, Pere Ubu, and Mucho Tapioca as psychedelic and progressive imagination collude in rock ambition, the track is a voracious cosmopolitan sounding adventure exploring fresh skies and earths simultaneously.

Quickly establishing itself as one of the album’s truly tantalising moments it is quickly matched by the daring rock ‘n’ roll of Feelings. The band’s latest single, the track launches through ears on gnarly riffs entwined in Red Hot Chili Peppers like funk infused devilry, grooves and hooks spared lusty tenacity across its virulent swing and flirtatious stroll. Again there is a mercurial bent to its boldness, every breath and mania gaining turn soaked in unpredictability and resulting pleasure before Side Effects leads the listener into sultry surf washed climate of sound and atmospheric intimation. The throaty tone of bass ensures a great earthy connection to the loftier exploration as essences reminding of bands such as System Of A Down and 6:33 add to the acceleration of wit, vision and pleasure.

The thought tantalising instrumental Spikes Trap brings its own shadows and mystery to bear next, the technical dexterity of the trio quickly establishing a mental picture for the imagination to conjure with before Connected envelops the senses in its fuzzy sonic smog and melodically fired threads. Though not a track which inflamed as fully as its predecessors, it made for a potent addition to the album’s persuasion which its title track emulated in its sepia coloured storm embraced acoustic serenade.

Across the seductive ears smooching inducement of Parasite and the haunting almost sinister atmospherics of Clouds enthralment with Crossroad was only further cemented; the first of the two alone a lively croon of inventive virulence and emotive attraction impossible to say no to and another peak to the album.

Through the contagion lined canter of The River, a track with a great whisper of XTC to its melodic breath and inventive suggestiveness, album and band unveiled yet another aspect to their sound and quest before leaving No Way Out to close things up. Its opening tease is eighties post punk nurtured, subsequent melodic and harmonic dissonance post rock toned with both flavours embroiled in greater adventure as the song swells with creative initiative and impassioned intensity.

It is a riveting end to an equally engrossing release; a true slab of originality and audacity. Whether Crossroad will take Upanishad to the attention of the biggest and numerous spotlights it deserves to tempt it is impossible to predict but it is easy to say that it is an album which will leave a lasting imprint and joy in those taking the plunge.

Crossroad is available now via Red Cat Records across most online stores.

https://www.facebook.com/Upanishadproject

Pete RingMaster 21/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Scabby Ghouls – Self Titled

Though horror punk is never slow in providing new excursions to venture six feet under with, of which many bring great memorable pleasure, there have not been quite so many in recent times to truly get the teeth into with sanguinary lustfulness. The Scabby Ghouls and their self-titled debut album is one such incitement, a collection of pulp horror driven devilry to bless any meeting of The Monster Club.

Hailing from Omaha, The Scabby Ghouls have dug up a sound as pop contagious as it is horror bloodied and punk driven; a mixture which if not on the major side of unique is fully immersed in the fresh and irresistible within their first full-length.

The album claws out from its mausoleum with opener Body Surfin’, immediately enveloping ears in dark mischief carrying drama as guitar lures mix with the voluptuous throb of the bass. The rolling beats of Nathan Christensen swiftly join and steer the incursion on ears and imagination as too the instantly alluring tones of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Denise Hazard. In no time the web of temptation becomes an appetite embroiling bedlam of creative mania entangled in the equally unhinged grooves and wires of guitarist Louie Hazard. Like a disembodied hand haunting Christopher Lee, the song stalks and fingers with increasing relish and like the big white lingering below its surface has no qualm about taking a more than welcome bite.

The great start is only escalated by the song named after the band. It too prowls the listener, checking them out before springing to its bold feet and instantly indulging in a rapacious saunter. With an essence which reminds of UK outfit Trioxin Cherry at times, the track is equipped with inescapable hooks and teasing riffs matched in temptation by vocals and the great throbbing bait escaping Alex Steffens’ bass. It all comes with a feral lining which is even more pronounced in next up Midwest Zombies, yet a raw wildness which only seems to enhance the instinctive virulence and catchiness of tracks let alone the individual prowess of the quartet.

Black Dahlia Bombshell is next up and soon eclipses its predecessor with its blood-lusting stalking and the subsequent rousing incitement of its viscera driven chorus. The track is pure horror punk wickedness resembling something inspired by the song books of early Misfits and Frankenstein Drag Queens from Planet 13 but quickly established as individual to The Scabby Ghouls before Dreaddy Krueger unleashes its own viral sonic blood-letting shaped by inescapable infernal hooks, rapacious riffs, and rhythms which twist the body like a puppet.

As potent and manipulative as both songs are, their ability to trespass and make the body do their bidding pales to the dexterity of the EP’s final and best tracks. Road Ragin’ is simply glorious, an insatiable surge of tarmac tearing, contagion loaded rock ‘n’ roll with a chorus which infests vocal chords within its first few words. The incitement musically is just as devious and enslaving while album closer, Knife Fight, is an old school punk nurtured holler taking in all-comers with voracious irritability to its infection loaded rumble.

Anticipation for the next endeavour from a band is nothing new or particularly rare but not often it comes with a side line of drool like that already escaping the wait for the next spook animated horror show from The Scabby Ghouls.

 The Scabby Ghouls album is out now via Out-O-Tune Records; available @ https://thescabbyghouls.bandcamp.com/album/the-scabby-ghouls

https://www.facebook.com/TheScabbyGhouls/

 Pete RingMaster 21/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Scaners – II

It is hard to believe that it has been over a year since the debut album from French cosmic punks The Scaners was unleashed; feeling like it was just yesterday mainly we guess because since its release it has barely taken more than a deep breath away from our speaks here at The RR. It was one of the major infestations of 2018 and is about to be joined by this year’s matching virus in the shape of the bands succinctly titled second full-length, II.

As with the first release, we are on board the intergalactic vessel Scaner with the Lyon based band, careering from planet to star, from stratospheric mystery to extra-terrestrial house party amidst a soundtrack bred on sonic hooks and scuzz punk antics. In many ways it is more of the same of that which made the first album so irresistible but within a few breaths there is no escaping a fresh wind of flavour, imagination, and creative devilment at play within the mischievously virulent II.

Recorded as the first full-length with Lo Spider and mastered by Jim Diamond the new adventurer in space instantly had the body bouncing and vocal chords hollering as first track, Please Abduct Me opened up its thrusters and declared its plea. Its first breath brings an eager surge of guitar amidst the swirling breeze of keys, boisterous rhythms in close company as the track flies through ears. The vocals of organist Pav are just as magnetic, backed by the equally tempting tones of the rest of the band. A slice of incorrigible power pop fuelled garage punk the track is superb, straight away putting album and listener in the keen frame of mind to go galaxy stomping.

Catch Up With A UFO follows, launching on a delicious rhythmic incitement from drummer BX which quickly leads to an adrenaline soaked stomp shaped by the guitar of DD and temptingly coloured by the dark shadows of Tama’s bass and the ever persuasive vocals of Pav and co. Navigating its flight through swinging gravitational debris, delinquent twists and turns further equip the inescapable greed casting bait of the song before the album lands at Random City 2099. A fuzzy slab of garage rock nurtured synth punk, the song is a magnetic shimmer of theremin and organ nurtured seduction across jangling guitar and rapacious beats and far too easy to devour to be good for one.

There was no running for cover as Mars Attacks descended on ears next, its aggressive bubblegum animation as feral as it is predatory with a Ramones meets Phenomenauts teasing sweeping the conflict while within the gamma ray hued Space X-Ploration, escape is a controlled but inexorable release of hips and greed within the song’s lunar contamination.

Through the sonic trajectory of Galactic Race the body became even more of a puppet to the band’s devious strings, so much so that an instinctive bounce did not relax even as it drifted off into the distance though that was as much down to the synth pop ‘n’ roll virulence of the following X-Ray Glasses as the teasing wake of its predecessor.

Then as Spin Like A Record brought an already breathless body to the boil with its insatiably anthemic punk ‘n’ roll clamour and Don’t Run, We’re Your Friends had it leaping around like a whirling dervish on hi-octane radiation, lust exploded from every pore.  Fair to say The Scaners was already a band we had bred ardour for but by this point it was bordering on the illicit and only intensified by the ear stalking almost primal threat of No Panic, No Stress and the communicable untamed catchiness of the glorious Pesticide Kids, both infiltrated by pestering hooks and scuzz dusted melodic temptation.

Completed by the event horizon that is Run DD Run, its gravitational pull a trap few would wish to escape or not give up inhibitions for. A final pandemic of the band’s unique infective rock ‘n’ roll; it is a blistering and thrilling end to a quite sensational album.

Ok we were already on the biased side going into The Scaners sophomore album but still not prepared for its extragalactic invasion. If there is life out there and it resembles The Scaners we are in!!

II is released 29th March via Dirty Water Records with pre-ordering available now @ https://thescaners.bandcamp.com/album/the-scaners-ii

Upcoming live dates include…

Mar 29 Meteoro, Barcelona, Spain

Mar 30 Fun House, Madrid, Spain

Apr 20 Attica Club, Ponferrada, Spain

May 31 Le Nadir / Friche Culturelle De L’antre-peaux, Bourges, France

 https://www.facebook.com/thescaners/

 Pete RingMaster 15/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Setbacks – Meet Me At The Blue Bridge

A handful of weeks back saw the release of Meet Me At The Blue Bridge, the new album from Grand Rapids, MI based band, The Setbacks. It was a release born from a devastating moment in the bands creator’s world; a raw and honest encounter which bares its heart in emotion and rock ‘n’ roll.

The Setbacks was started by vocalist/guitarist Lucy Ernst who soon recruited Slumlord Radio vocalist/guitarist Tommy Erickson on bass and Brent Riva of The Holy Warheads on drums to complete her project. Their first offering is dedicated to Gym Young, Ernst’s long-time boyfriend, soul mate and musician partner who passed away and deals with loss and the recovery from it. Across its eights tracks, Meet Me At The Blue Bridge also uncages some feisty bordering on the gnarly rock ‘n’ roll; a potent force within songs which with their open emotions and contemplation suggests it all provided a truly cathartic release for its creators.

The album opens with Downfall and immediately flexes its muscle and groove as guitar and bass swing with the lively beats of Riva. Nagging hooks are just as freely offered around the vocal lure of Ernst, the song revelling in its dirty rock with a tint of punk character while all the time teasing and tempting as ears and attention were swiftly grabbed.

The following Slaughterhouse Orchid equally releases an appetite niggling hook from the off, Ernst’s guitar curving itself around the senses with devious intent as rhythms add their own infectious gait to the quickly enticing encounter. There is a great wonkiness to the song, an off-kilter edge recalling the days of old school UK punk which just as eagerly infests the vocals before it all makes way for the album’s title track. Sauntering with a certain swagger the song serenades with a roar in a reflecting voice as melodic flames rise around its blues lined hard rock wrapped thoughts. Though it does not quite match up to its predecessors, the song is a magnetic listen but soon eclipsed by the addictive antics of Closer to the Middle. Once more an infernal groove bred hook got under the skin with swift and keen relish as vocals and rhythms create their own eagerly catchy lures; together creating an impossible to ignore mixture which is just as crafty within the otherwise individual fiery rock ‘n’ roll of next up Watch it Burn.

Reflecting on those hooks and grooves springing from the guitar across the album there is something akin to Devo going post punk/noise rock with Starsha Lee in close attention about them and in full captivation within next up Broken Teeth. With an unscrupulous swing and flirty swagger to its gait, the track is a feral temptress which as the album just gets more inescapable by the listen.

A Pretenders like hue wraps Inside Out straight after, it a song which did not quite grab ears as those before but is a strongly intriguing proposal adding to the strength of the release before another highlight closes things up. One Kiss is the one song created by Ernst and Gym Young, an acoustic affair soaked in off-centre beauty as melodies share dissonant charm. The track is as compelling and cracked as an image in a shattered mirror and just as rich an incitement to the imagination with keys only adding to its haunting romance.

It is a glorious end to a release which just blossoms play by play. It might not fall as easily on the ears of some but for those with a hunger for disturbed melodies, aberrant but viral rock ‘n’ roll, and heart bred openness Meet Me at the Blue Bridge should be explored.

Meet Me at the Blue Bridge is out now; available @ https://thesetbacksgr.bandcamp.com/album/meet-me-at-the-blue-bridge

 

https://www.facebook.com/pg/thebluebridgegr

Pete RingMaster 15/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright