Horse Party – Paydirt EP

photo by Kate Wood  White-Robot Photography

photo by Kate Wood White-Robot Photography

Often there comes an underlying fear with something that is so good it makes you drool but still seems to go unrecognised by the masses, that success always managing to evade the deserved. So it is with the music of Horse Party which continue to release fiercely exhilarating songs bred on a sound which is furiously fresh but with an old friend like invitation. The British alternative rock ‘n’ rollers have done so yet again with new EP Paydirt, a captivation of three fiery tracks breathing open diversity within the band’s superb fusion of emotive aggression and bewitching charm. It is an incitement which manages to be raw, mellow, and incendiary simultaneously, basically manna for ears and imagination. There is a line in the EP’s second song which declares “We are the eye of the storm”, and that sums up Horse Party and their gripping sound as a whole perfectly.

Since emerging in 2012, Bury St Edmunds based trio of guitarist/ vocalist Ellie Langley, guitarist/vocalist Seymour Quigley, and drummer/vocalist Shannon Hope have explored and developed their music through a host of songs, starting with the track Clarion Call which was even more impressively followed by their first official single Back To Mono in 2013. Grabbing ears and appetites of an increasing fan base and the underground media, the band pooled that early success, in turn sparking greater spotlight on them and acclaim, with their debut album Cover Your Eyes a year later. Equally the band’s live and hungry presence has also lured only praise and a potent reputation, Horse Party sharing stages with bands such as Tunng, Pinkunoizu, Shonen Knife, Heartless Bastards, Ghostpoet, Slaves, Levellers, Basement Jaxx, The Nightingales, Dingus Khan, We Are The Physics, and Vuvuvultures over the past years.

cover_RingMaster Review     This year has already seen a pair of striking propositions from the band with a new chapter in the movement and evolution of their sound. The double A-side single Out Of Sight/Receiver was first, its two songs revealing new growth and smoother textures to their still raunchily organic sound, an exciting turn taken forward again by What I’d Do just a few weeks back. The single was a rousing mix of bracing roars and intimate caresses, of light and dark emotions with again that now keener surface to an instinctively unpredictable and riveting enterprise. Paydirt continues the captivating adventure in sound but also as most of its predecessors comes with its own stock of individual surprises and addictive invention.

The EP’s title track is first, pumped beats and spicy riffs the first bait offered with the former just managing to hold a rein on urgency and the latter sizzling on flesh with their inviting tang. Within a few more breaths additional slithers of groove and nags of magnetism join in through the second guitar as Langley just as potently entices with her recognisable, melancholy lined tones. Alone the song has the appetite chained, lips only more ravenously licked as the track burst into scuzzy roars within an ever addictive stroll. Dark emotions and predatory shadows equally lurk throughout, as too a hint of bedlam in the song’s exciting tempestuous moments; it all uniting for another breath-taking Horse Party incitement.

Second track Animal similarly makes a rousingly compelling start with choppy rhythms and riffs which almost stalk the rich voice of Langley. It swiftly forges its own identity though as teasing melodies and caustic tempting spring from Quigley’s fingers on string, licking the senses like flames whilst Hope badgers with her flirtatious beats. A sublime breeze of psych rock brews within the track too, finding its moment to croon in an oasis of mellowness within the stormy textures of the song. A whiff of post punk only adds to the alchemy, with Au Pairs coming to mind as the track leads the listener on a merry escapade of drama and imagination.

The closing acoustic based seduction of October has ears enchanted as the EP completes its rich temptation. In every second of the song, melancholy smoulders through word and emotion whilst melodies and the vocal union of Langley and Quigley simply mesmerises. As in every release to date, increasing depths to the songwriting and invention of the band are revealed, sublimely in this third song and though it does at first take a touch longer to whip up the lustful reactions as earned by its companions within Paydirt, it has emotions and thoughts chained with increasing potency over every eager listen.

Paydirt is another irresistible gem from Horse Party, a band which it is impossible to tire of saying ‘ just gets better and better’. It is time for the UK to wake up, indeed Europe and the world, to the Horse Party; if you do not you are truly missing out.

The Paydirt EP is available via R*E*P*E*A*T Records/Pure Deadly digitally and on 7” vinyl from 4th September.

Pete RingMaster 31/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Blood Divisions – Self Titled

Blood Divisions _RingMaster Review

Blood Divisions, band and EP is the coming together of a host of metal’s talented for a two track encounter that without sending excitement into overload provides one very satisfying offering. The self-titled proposal will also see a portion of proceeds raised by sales donated to Rock & Rescue, a charity helmed by acclaimed producer Jay Ruston, as well as the Warren County Tennessee Humane Society; that alone is worth the investigation and offering of your cents and pennies.

Released via Metal Blade Records, the EP features two cover songs brought to life by the likes of, amongst many, Ralph Santola, Dave Austin, Greg Gall, Terry Butler, and Chris Jericho (full list below); the latter when recently talking about the project stating “BLOOD DIVISIONS is an all-star collection of some of the most talented musicians to ever come from the legendary southern Florida metal scene. Being a HUGE fan of all of these musicians and their legendary bands, especially Nasty Savage, when David Austin himself asked me to lay down the vocals, I responded immediately, ‘YES! What songs do you want me to sing and how many studded leather gauntlets can I wear?’ I’m so honored and proud to be a part of the project and very excited with the results. Trust me, it’s going to tear all of your fuckin’ heads off, in the best possible way!

First track is a cover of the Nasty Savage incitement The Morgue, a song which has ears and imagination fascinated from its opening breath of keys and sinister dark stringed portentousness. Drama oozes from every choral fanfare and melodically epic enticement as the song grows within ears, it soon settling into a dark chamber of string plucking craft and rhythmic predation lorded over by the distinctive tones of Jericho. Shadows continually come alive as the musical narrative evolves, enthralling ears and attention with only a slight slip of persuasion when the song opens into a more expected heavy metal stroll, though again twists and turns are part of the continuing adventure. There are times it feels like the track is trying to fit in as many of the individual skills of the line-up as it can within the nine minutes or so, and it’s fluidly reflects that a touch but nothing to defuse a thoroughly enjoyable and increasingly alluring encounter.

The second track is a take on the Scorpions classic Top of the Bill, another resourcefully solid version if one which did not take with personal tastes as potently. To be honest our preferences generally never include an appetite for heavy metal/seventies hard rock in their menu but nevertheless and as expected with the musicianship on offer, the track still persuades with a blaze of vocal and creative dexterity in an enjoyable stomp.

Whether Blood Divisions is a one off or something which may as a project evolve we will see, but whichever its EP is certainly worth a moment of your time whilst supporting worthy causes.

Blood Divisions features:

Chris Jericho – vocals

Dave Austin – guitars (Nasty Savage)

Ralph Santola – lead guitar (Death, Obituary, Testament, Iced Earth)

Terry Butler – bass (Obituary, Death, Denial Fiend, Massacre)

Greg Gall – drums (Six Feet Under)

Bill Owen – lead guitar (Purgatory)

John Mahoney – lead guitar (Fester)

Ben Meyer – lead guitar (Nasty Savage, Low Brow, Gardy Loo)

Blood Divisions is available now as a digital EP via Metal Blade Records

Pete RingMaster 31/08/2015

Nemaind – Eclipsi EP

cover_RingMaster Review

There is not a great deal we can tell you about Spanish melodic death metallers Nemaind though the most important bit of information you need anyway is that their debut EP, Eclipsi, is one heavily flavoursome and magnetically alluring incitement. Its three tracks do not break down boundaries or re-invent existing landscapes within the death metal scene, but it undoubtedly provides one potential fuelled, richly enjoyable sonic tempest to eagerly immerse within.

Formed early 2014, Nemaind hails from Barcelona inspired by bands such as Moonspell, Opeth, Death, Gojira, Insomnium, Caladan Brood, Sylosis, Emperor, and Amon Amarth. Created by vocalist/bassist Ferran C, previously of thrashers Rotten, the band’s line-up was soon enriched by guitarists David C and Gerard B, subsequently followed by drummer Martí F. Recorded in February this year, Eclipsi gives the first introduction to a broader expanse of ears of Nemaind, in turn offering a strong persuasion of their craft and potential.

Eclipsi opens with its title track and instantly has attention and appetite wide awake with a swarm of waspish riffery and fierce rhythmic intimidation. It is a masterfully magnetic start which continues to tempt and work on the psyche as the track breaks into and begins exploring a malevolent landscape of portentous grooves and sonic rapacity. The vocals are varied causticity, their diversity never merging major differences between tones and delivery but enough to ensure more fresh textures in the tempest of sound and the increasing adventure emerging within the outstanding and increasingly impressive encounter. The guitars especially spin an evolving web of intrigue and imagination within the volatile atmosphere and confrontation of the song, adding captivating hues and ideation in the face of barbarous intent.

The following Pareidoniria is similarly sculpted within its own individual character and ravenous air, addiction loaded riffs stalking with unrelenting persistence alongside rapier beats and a throaty bass groove. Musically the track conjures a soundscape Gojira like in rousing dexterity and technical imagination, Insomnium seeded in hostile and ravishing emotional trespassing whilst its melodic ferocity is Corbeaux like. It does not quite match up to its predecessor’s heights yet only leaves a want for more and helps build the intent to keep the band on the personal radar.

The EP is brought to an end with Les últimes llums de tardor, another predatory protagonist this time emerging from a primal sonic mist bristling with thickly flavoursome flavours and ear pleasing enterprise. Initially there is an almost eighties like gothic spicing colluding with broadening winds of sonic and extreme metal drama rippling with creative expression and highly provocative aural colour. It is the least physically corrosive of the three songs, though still showing no emotional mercy, weaving a fascinating design of warm and barren scenery which is always emotively lively and boldly adventurous as it scars the senses.

As the final song’s cold climate dissipates, Nemaind leaves only richly positive thoughts and full pleasure behind. As suggested, it is not the most original release yet every listen brings something fresh and individual against other encounters you may come across with a similar canvas of sound. We suggest taking note of the name and enjoying their debut with the promise of increasingly impressive explorations with the band another lingering aftermath.

The Eclipsi EP is available digitally now on Nemaind’s bandcamp profile.

Pete RingMaster 31/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Best Years – Drop Out

BY1_RingMaster Review

There is no denying that UK pop punks Best Years wear their inspirations openly in their sound but also that they write a cracking good pop song as evidenced by new EP Drop Out. Romping with three songs arguably low on dramatic originality but high on accomplished and energetically tenacious enterprise, the Manchester quintet’s second offering is one feel good romp.

Barely a year into their emergence, Best Years quickly nudged eager attention with debut EP Footwork, and now its successor is ready to stir up even greater awareness and excitement. Musically, as suggested, Best Years are unafraid to draw on the best essences of influences such as Blink-182, Brand New, The Story So Far, and Lit amongst a few. This ensures an easy familiarity meets invention in their sound, and right now it works in their favour in a release which uncages, in the words of vocalist Joel Plews, “three songs that’ll show what we’re made of.

BY Artwork_RingMaster Review     Drop Out opens up with Built To Last, a song to be admitted which had these ears hooked just by its opening melody, its warm smile carrying suggestions of riper things to come, which indeed they do as the song reveals a feisty stroll with spiky beats and a web of hooks and fiery riffs. There is an instant and eager energy to the song which is matched by the strong vocals of Plews, backed very well across the band. The guitars of Ed Lawson and James Hunt continue to dance on the imagination from start to finish, continually hinting, as the song itself does, that they are about to explode into a more aggressive state but instead just remain flirting and teasing with lively enterprise.

It is a highly pleasing start to the EP but soon outshine by Overrated, a track which rhythmically is gentle but firmly imposing and melodically tangy. The bass of Josh Holland provides a slightly understated but captivating shadow to more vibrant resourcefulness from the guitars whilst the beats of drummer Josh Berzins skilfully frames all in the increasing contagion. Again it is fair to say vocals and guitars steal the limelight but are only enhanced and allowed the freedom by the darker hues of the rhythmic union. The track is the lead song from Drop Out and easy to see why with its infectious character and enterprise, though for personal tastes it’s successor just steals the show.

Back Then from an eventful and inviting start quickly blossoms into a roar of a song. All three tracks are anthems easy to get fully involved with but the third song is manna to rock ‘n’ roll instincts. Rhythmically it is a riveting agitation whilst hooks and harmonies just grip and explode in a warm shower of sound and energy. The chorus, well that is inescapable and completes one inventive bellow of fun and persuasion.

Without being truly distinct from the best of the crowd, Best Years show themselves to be a richly promising and thoroughly enjoyable proposition through Drop Out. It also suggests that certain uniqueness is brewing within so watch this space for possible bigger bolder things with matching success ahead.

The Drop Out EP is released on August 28th 2015 via Dream Atlantic Records.

Pete RingMaster 28/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Them Teeth – The Knuckledragger

TT_RingMaster Review

There is nothing like a good sonic brawl to grab attention and get the blood rushing feverishly through the body, and that is exactly what you get with The Knuckledragger EP from US noise punks Them Teeth. The three track assault is an uncompromising and galvanic incitement for ears and emotions, one so potent that within a single listen it had permanently placed itself in The RR’s favourite violation list for 2015.

Its creators, Western Michigan trio Them Teeth arose in 2013, formed from the ashes of Supercontinent, Rough Rope, and Mean Mother by vocalist/guitarist Ben Roeske and drummer Adam Tatro. The following year saw the line-up completed by bassist Jason Harris and the self-release of a well-received self-titled demo containing six songs bred on inspirations of 90s noise rock and early 2000s Hydra Head Records encounters amongst many things. As that offering and now The Knuckledragger reveal, there is plenty more to the Them Teeth sound though, plenty of diverse strains of toxicity to savage and seduce body and soul.

TT1600x1600_RingMaster Review   The EP seizes ears and appetite straight away with the raw, grouchy entrance of opener Hammslamm. Guitar and bass grumble with attitude and resonance first, their grudge backed by the firm handed swing of drum sticks. It is a controlled and predatory start but one becoming more volatile with every passing second, especially once the caustic vocal squall of Roeske spills animosity. Acidic infectious grooves soon vein the unrelenting stalking and pressure on the senses, the song’s raw rock ‘n’ roll constantly igniting greater hunger in ears and emotions, especially when it break outs Sex Pistols seeded riffs and hooks midway. Like Whores meets KEN mode with the sludgy venom of Nightslug but managing to be simultaneously unique, the track is a mighty start quickly matched by its successor.

Whitewash is lighter on its feet but just as aggressively imposing and energetically rebellious. Like a middleweight flitting round its opponent looking for weaknesses, the track swings hooks and rhythmic jabs before going for the jugular in raucously honed choruses. The raw rapacity of a Coilguns or Shevils comes to mind as the song continues to challenge the senses, spilling rousing contagion and rugged animosity with open relish.

The EP is closed by a thrilling cover of the Fiends track Packin’ A Rod and Them Teeth give it new life and character to dare we say actually outshine the original. It is noise soaked punk ‘n’ roll at its best with great backing roars from Debra Warren and Lara Tatro alongside additional guitar exploits from Mitch Anderson, a classic song given a face and body lift to rousing effect.

We can expect to hear plenty more of and from Them Teeth ahead, indeed they have a 7″ split with France’s brilliant Sofy Major via Detroit’s Corpse Flower Records on the horizon, and if anything matches or can actually surpass the outstanding The Knuckledragger we are all in for a thrilling bruising.

The Knuckledragger EP is available digitally and on Ltd Ed 7” vinyl from August 25 via Triple Eye Industries.

RingMaster 25/08/2015

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http://www.zykotika.com/

High Tiny Hairs – Self Titled EP

cover_RingMaster Review

Take a pinch of sixties garage rock, a whiff of seventies/ eighties psychedelic pop, and a scent of the punk rawness which has spiced any decade you care to mention in some form or other, and you have something akin to the sound of High Tiny Hairs. The new project from former Fuck Knights guitarist and Nightingales front man Ben Bachman, the band is a raw and magnetic tantalising of ears in sound and invention with a potent self-titled debut EP to introduce themselves by. Receiving its UK unveiling this month, the six track encounter almost licks at the imagination with its stirring flavours and mesmeric sonic colours, each song flirting with bright hues around darker lyrical shadows.

Formed by the Minneapolis based Bachman with inspirations of artists like Alex Chilton, Brian Eno, and Syd Barrett spicing his creativity, High Tiny Hairs almost instantly captivates body and thoughts from the EP’s first breath. With Ioana Cristina Mirica, Sergio Hernandez, GD Mills, and Eric Levy alongside Bachman, the band instantly tempts with a web of inviting guitar as opener Chaos Ensues begins to blossom in ears. That alone seems to merge sixties lures with new wave enticement before glowing vocals caress a broadening and increasingly catchy landscape being laid by the song. Its prime hook is like a familiar friend yet defines pinning down whilst the fiery vocals and rosy yet chilled melodies within a sturdy rhythmic and sonic frame, suggests something akin to The Raincoats meets Melody’s Echo Chamber meets Horse Party.

The potent start continues in the rawer brilliance of Ghost Shadow, a song best described as The Electric Prunes in a mesmeric romance with The Sonics and indeed Syd Barrett. With the increasingly tempting charm and flirtation of a Farfisa organ coating and seducing respectively the jagged bones of the song and a swiftly greedy appetite for it, the track is a wonderful unruly smoulder of raw garage bred dream pop and swiftly matched in persuasion by the sultry pop rock of First World Problems. Keys and vocals again tantalise as the jangle of guitars and the ever darkly toned bass both skip over and prowl their companion’s warmly enticing adventures, the result another pleasing escapade for the listener.

Redd Room slips into its sixties seeding with relish from the first second, keys again embracing the pop of that era whilst adding a seventies psych rock smile. Around and within this though, starting with a great opening hook out of the De Staat songbook, the band infuses a weave of matching magnetic styles and sonic resourcefulness. The song does not quite match up to its predecessor but nevertheless has feet and hips swaying with as much contentment as that growing in ears.

The haunting stroll of Night Time Wander steps forward next, again catchy and lively exploits of rhythms and guitar, as well as the fascinating lure of the vocals, embracing and infusing the “sombre and sardonic musings” of Bachman. Feet have no resistance to the song, nor healthy enjoyment before the closing Girl Like U completes the EP. The last song, as Redd Room earlier, is missing that certain something for personal tastes which lit the EP’s other tracks so potently, yet it provides a slice of sixties honed pleasure to broadly smile about whilst finishing off a great introduction to High Tiny Hairs, an EP which in many ways brings the sound of summer across numerous decades into one sultry adventure.

The High Tiny Hairs EP is available on limited edition cassette and digital download via Sir Gregory Records now.

RingMaster 24/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Future Talk – The Path That Sadness Paved

FT_RingMaster Review

Managing to bring potent scents of styles like post hardcore/rock into their familiar yet undeniably fresh and captivating tapestry of alternative rock, UK band Future Talk uncage a powerful introduction to themselves with their The Path That Sadness Paved EP. Seriously engaging on first listen and increasingly compelling with every subsequent involvement in its four emotionally ripe songs, the release offers swift suggestion of a potentially impressive force in the making. The EP does not blaze with striking originality yet again there is the hint that the possibility is also in the breeding as it leaves ears and appetite thoroughly satisfied in the now.

Hailing from Gloucester and emerging in 2014 from the previous projects of its members, Future Talk has been earning a strong reputation for their live presence over the past year which in turn has inspired keen anticipation for their first release. References to bands such as Emarosa, Mallory Knox, and Underoath have been offered against the band’s sound, easy to understand suggestions when listening to The Path That Sadness Paved though in other ways Shattered Skies and Circle of Reason also occasionally nudge thoughts across the quartet of captivating songs.

Cover_RingMaster Review     The Path That Sadness Paved opens with new single/video Sleeping Pills, immediately covering ears in a wave of melodic enticement and sonic coaxing punctuated by firm handed rhythms. The rich tones of vocalist Alex Taylor make an equally potent impact on first impression, flourishing in the embrace of the song’s resourceful drama and imaginative enterprise whilst the track seems to only blossom further with his melodically honed impassioned roars. It is a fiercely magnetic start to the release, as suggested not a song breaking down boundaries but, as the EP, powerfully leaving ears and appetite hungry for more; a success in anyone’s book.

The following Shadow Poet builds from a gentler lure into a tempest of emotion sculpted by great individual craft across the band. The moody bassline nicely contrasts the more fiery elements of the song whilst the vocals add their own catchy nature to a web of jabbing beats, sparkling hooks, and a persistently eventful design in songwriting and sound. Over time, even outshining the excellent opener, the song tells you all you need to know about the invention, potential, and instinctive power of the band and their rousing music.

The Cliffs As A Reminder reveals another fluid and involved weave of guitar and key, it wrapping rolling rhythms in a tantalising blend which is only enhanced by the ever robustly flamed vocals and their lyrical and emotional theatre. Equipped with a dark almost cantankerous tone through the bass, the track ignites ears full pleasure before making way for the closing elegance and emotional croon of Fear Life. Without quite matching the heights of the first trio of songs, it alternately bellows and hauntingly smoulders with open craft and enthralling endeavour to still leave EP and ears on a notable high.

As mentioned Future Talk are not at a point where their distinct identity shines through their already impressing creativity and exciting sound but guitarists Jay McQuilkin and Jack Cadenhead, drummer Max Elderfield, bassist Mitch Potts, and Taylor seem on course to find that uniqueness at some point, whilst providing as here rather enjoyable times along the way.

The Path That Sadness Paved EP is available from August 24th digitally and on CD.

RingMaster 24/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright