Wood Chickens – Must Die

Pic Courtesy of Madylen Photography

True uniqueness is a rarity in modern times though you can certainly get very individual takes on the familiar to feed the insatiable appetite for something new. It is fair to say that Wood Chickens have a handle on the former more than most, their sound within new EP, Must Die, a sonic scourge which simultaneously defies the breeding bearing its rapacious presence. It makes for a hellacious infestation of noise which had ears joyous and the imagination spiralling.

Hailing from Madison, Wisconsin, Wood Chickens descends on the senses through the scurrilous antics and prowess of Alex Wiley Coyote, Griff Chickens, and Justin J. Johnson. Their new EP is our introduction to the trio but hindsight has found that across a host of releases their sound has boldly evolved from its country/cowpunk breeding. Must Die is their most extreme offering yet; a cauldron of feral noise and imagination gloriously spoiled with the toxins of punk and metal as well as psych and noise rock.

Five tracks barely touching five minutes in length, the EP immediately has ears cowering and thoughts disoriented with Sados. Its corrupted entrance eventually bursts into a rabid onslaught as guitars and rhythms join vocals in scarring the senses. It is a maelstrom of dissonance yet has an instinctive undercurrent of catchiness bred from its punk natured seeding.

We Skate in Boots swings in next, psych sighs accompanying its brewing contagion loaded garage punk tainted punk ‘n’ roll. Primal and anthemic, the track roars and incites participation as easily as it savages the senses surging through ears with rabidity to the fore before Return of Skunk Ape unleashes its own untamed caustic virulence across 46 seconds of subversive temptation and creative devilry embracing similar choleric hues to its predecessor.

The EP closes up with the psychotic animus that is Y2k Pt. 2, undiluted ravenous noise and intent corroding the speakers, though there is also an untitled unannounced track after that which is, well just bewildering and indeed magnetic.

There has been little if anything which comes close to the sound and invention of Must Die, indeed it seems nothing in the Wood Chickens discography previously like it either. If it is a new turn in the band’s music we for one will be overjoyed though their previous encounters are nothing to ignore, and if just a one off certainly something to be greedily devoured by all with an appetite for the contagion of noise.

Must Die is out now via Crush Grove Records; available digitally and on cassette @ https://crushgroverecords.bandcamp.com/album/must-die

https://www.facebook.com/woodchickensband/   https://woodchickens.bandcamp.com/

 Pete RingMaster 14/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dave Barbarossa – Mudsharks

Some musicians have the most distinctive style and enterprise that it is easy to know who they are just from a burst of sound. When it comes to drummers for us here it is not so easy but one man has a touch and style to his rhythmic imagination that it is impossible not to recognise. That artist is Dave Barbarossa and he has just released a rather irresistible new EP as part of the Icon Series.

2013 saw the publishing of Dave’s excellent debut novel Mud Sharks and the new EP adds its apparent connection through its title. The Mudsharks EP provides three instrumentals uniting his trademark style with electronic intimation and endeavour; at times marrying the rhythmic sound which ignited so many musical journeys in the seventies with his just as potent exploits through more recent projects such as Cauldronated.

The EP opens with Buttercup Girl, a slice of tenacious dance music with summer fervour in its keys and melody and flirtatious incitement in its rhythms. Like a flight through spatial climes but with earth bound muscularity pulling at its exploration, the track has the body bouncing and imagination conjuring in no time.

It is a rousing start though one for us swiftly eclipsed by the following pair of tracks. First up is Keep Walking, a piece which strolls along with relentless tenacity through cosmopolitan air over a more defined urban landscape. Dave’s rhythms just shape the imagination; suspense and drama fuelled by his web of swings as a cinematic weave is cast by electronics and synths. Quickly addictive and more so by the listen, the song reveals itself a viral persuasion.

The closing arousal of the EP’s title track is the perfect union of nostalgia and new. MudSharks harkens back to the irresistible rhythmic exploits of Bow Wow Wow but incitement draped in thick electronic intimation and drama amidst the floating lures of vocal harmonies. As its predecessors, it masterfully lures thoughts into painting adventures whilst turning hips and feet into its puppet.

Dave Barbarossa has been integral in numerous major treats and now the Mudsharks EP can be added to the list.

The Mudsharks EP is out now on download and Ltd. Edition Cassette Tape via Icon Series.

https://www.facebook.com/dave.barbarossa   https://www.facebook.com/iconseriesrecords/

Pete RingMaster 13/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Lower Automation – Shoebox Companion

Two years ago Chicago trio Lower Automation seared and pleasured ears with their debut EP Maps.  Now the band returns with its successor in Shoebox Companion and six tracks which also scorch, disorientate, and simply excite the senses and imagination. In some ways it is more of the same invention found in that first release pushed and taken to a whole new plateau but in far more avenues it is a new rabid animal of sound and enterprise.

Creating a ravenous spiral of math punk and rabid noise which never takes a moment to relax its tempest, the threesome of guitarist/vocalist Derek Allen, bassist Brian Sutton, and drummer Matt Walen use bare seconds to infest ears and peace. As proven by both EPs, it is a welcome invasion which despite its individuality, an essence escalated within Shoebox Companion, breeds part resemblance to a feral mix of Dillinger Escape Plan, At The Drive In, and mclusky.

Shoebox Companion opens up with Coax, a track immediately luring attention though there is nothing gentle or gradual about its initial sonic trespass. The corkscrew of guitar which instantly erupts is seductively violent as too the rampant rhythms which join it. Sutton’s bass is a grumbling joy while Allen’s subsequent vocals are mellow and charming against the building meshuga of sound.  It is all though just the trigger to greater disorientation in sound and imagination as the track creatively veers this way and that like a dervish; every one of its spiky wires adding to the pleasure.

It is a glorious start kept in full charge by next up Cattle Prod Hypochondriac. Allen’s voice and guitar ravages the senses from the song’s first breath yet it is an infectious violation driven by the rapier swings of Walen and the ever compelling guttural rumble of Sutton’s bass. Discord and dissonance flood every turn, the tangle of sound as unpredictable as it is virulent across two and a half minutes of inventive chaos.

Tethered has a touch more control to its maelstrom as harmonic strife and relative calm align within the song’s sonic chasm. The irritable incursion of rhythms equally makes for a tempering contrast to the intoxicated antics of the wailing guitar; it all uniting for increasing layers of magnetism before 30 Second Song provides just that but a half minute of carnal magnificence with more than a whiff of early Birthday Party to it.

The final pair of Phil and Phyllis Philler and Swing Flesh ensures the EP’s high never dipped. The first has the body bouncing as the senses cower before its citric assault, both eagerly taking a breath within the song’s post rock nurtured lulls which bring the imagination further into play whilst its successor is a visceral fingering of psyche and anatomy. Its skeletal dance is irresistible, the rhythmic animation addictive, and sonic mutation bewitching; the perfect end to a moment of creative voracity.

Lower Automation powerfully announced its arrival with the psychotic frenzy of the acclaimed Maps, now they have not only underlined their presence but declared themselves an essential proposition with one of the year’s musts in Shoebox Companion.

Shoebox Companion is available now @ https://lowerautomation.bandcamp.com/album/shoebox-companion

http://lowerautomation.com/    https://www.facebook.com/lowerautomation   https://twitter.com/lowerautomation

Pete RingMaster 13/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Artificially Yours – The Merger

Ravenously invasive, teasingly seductive, and verging on the creatively psychotic, The Merger EP is the new three-track offering from British trio Artificially Yours. It is a release which has been eagerly anticipated, especially since the Essex outfit’s recent link up with 1-2-3-4 Records; one which rewards that intrigue with a ferociously compelling dissonance fuelled adventure.

Created by vocalist Chat soon after the demise of his previous project which hailed its departure supporting Killing Joke, Artificially Yours has grown from an initial solo project to the three pronged attack of its founder and the electronic prowess of Grumb and Ad. Their sound is a rabid eddy of noise and imagination; post and garage punk thickly lining its distortion fuelled space rock with the rabid tendencies of many more rich flavours involved. Aligned to a lyrical and vocal trespass invading and echoing the growing dystopian landscape and the controlling selfish hands shaping it, it all makes for a proposition which makes you pay attention and question the world, one’s own thoughts, and indeed the magnetic almost feral incitement the band offers.

The Merger opens with its title track, a senses suffocating smog of sound as corrosively apocalyptic as it is coarsely captivating. Sonic winds buffet ears and imagination as rhythms swing, Chat’s vocals with their invasive threat and echo equally as magnetic within the inventive maelstrom. Swiftly it is an infectious affair and as quickly a debilitating irruption but one with imaginative control to its visceral tempest and raw temptation. Though having its rabid claws in ears and appetite almost straight away, it grew its addictive persuasion by the listen; a transgression on the ‘coffee cup capitulation’ steering modern society , as declared by the band, which just gets under the skin and into the psyche.

The following Terror Town matches its predecessor’s stirring heights with its own fully individual character and prowess. Slowly stirring its body into action, the song slips into a magnetic stroll with a somnambulistic air where post punk seeds and electronic intimation collude. Akin to a fusion of the infectious prowess of Tones On Tails and the carnal dexterity of Big Black wrapped in the wiry strands of The Jesus And Mary Chain, the seductive track is swift and ever increasing intoxication; its own intemperance exposed in great woozy bursts of keys within the vocally dark, rhythmically moody exposé.

Final track, Tree, uncages its own uniquely carnal proposal, one as virulently catchy as it is unapologetically frictious. Its psych rock breeding is smothered in unruly noise and enterprise though neither can diffuse its infectious swing with a definite touch of T-Rex meets Joy Division to its nature and tenacity. Adding yet another distinct eclectic shade to the EP, it makes for a glorious end to one striking release.

Formed last year, Artificially Yours has already been stirring up keen attention and can now expect tides more through The Merger. If the world is going down, it could not wish for a better soundtrack with just a glimpse of a survival plan.

The Merger EP is released August 24th via 1-2-3-4 Records.

Upcoming Live Dates:

WED 29th AUG – OLD BLUE LAST, Shoreditch

THURS 13th SEPT – THE VICTORIA, Dalston

 https://www.facebook.com/artificiallyyours99/

Pete RingMaster 12/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hypnosister – Self Titled EP

If the celestial angels took a night off from enchanting the skies with some spacey rock ‘n’ roll fuelled by earthbound fire and brimstone, the debut EP from Hypnosister would be the perfect centre piece of temptation. The six track offering craftily seduces as it boldly roars, enticingly caresses as it dramatically trespasses the senses. Simply put it is a real treat for ears and imagination

Hypnosister is the solo project of former Allusondrugs guitarist/songwriter Damian Hughes which the British artist unveiled mid-2017. Describing it as space pop, Hughes weaves an immediately individual and virulent sound inspired by the likes of My Bloody Valentine, Nirvana, and Neutral Milk Hotel. Early singles and live shows soon grabbed attention of fans and the likes of XFM’s John Kennedy, Punktastic and Upset Magazine; support and plaudits sure to be escalating through his first EP.

With no other hand but Hughes involved from writing and playing to recording and producing, the EP opens up with the truly irresistible Poorly Boy. The track rises up with drama and attractive tension in its tone, bringing its thick hues together to burst into an instantly rousing and infectious affair led by the potent voice of Hughes. Though under control, there is tempestuousness to the track which emerges in twists and an unpredictable enterprise that just gripped attention and a quickly forming appetite for the Hypnosister adventure. There is a touch of The Horrors to the song in certain moments too but merely one of the alluring hues in its individuality.

The following Bother emerges on cosmic currents, sauntering in on a slow but catchy swing as waves of infectiousness court its magnetic lures. Hughes’ guitar has something of Lester Square of The Monochrome Set to its character; hooks and melodies springing like tentacles upon the imagination within another gorgeous encounter before Breath injects an earthier presence to the EP’s spatial climate. A post punk lilt to the guitar is contrasted by Hughes’ harmonic but again slightly grainy vocals; the almost funereal gait of the song equally at complementary odds with the natural catchiness of the inescapable temptation.

Next up Ghost serenades ears with harmonic radiance but soon reveals its own wiry enterprise and muscular drama within the ethereal shimmer. Again creative tension just lifted track and the passions alike, giving an edge to its melodic seduction and spirit rousing roar while I’m Going To Die ventures into emotional shadows and dark hues without negating the organic contagiousness Hughes’ songs just seem to breed with ease. With a touch of sixties garage pop to its fuzzy glow and a bold brooding to its rhythmic enticement, the track brings yet another individual aspect to the EP and sound of Hypnosister.

The release concludes with new single Scribbles, a song with angst and psychosis to its emotions, words, and tone but unsurprisingly also has infectiousness which just gets under the skin with guile and a deceitful touch, manipulating and enslaving almost secretively by the second. Bookended with distorted carnival-esque intimation, the track is a mesmeric end to one ridiculously compelling encounter.

With distortion, almost discord infesting the craft of the guitars and fuzz coating its melodic and spatial beauty, the Hypnosister sound borders on creative alchemy, certainly offers undiluted temptation making the first EP an essential piece of space rock ‘n’ pop adventure.

The Hypnosister EP is out now via Sleep All Day Productions, available @ https://hypnosister.bigcartel.com/ and https://hypnosister.bandcamp.com/album/hypnosister-ep

https://www.hypnosister.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/hypn0sister/   https://twitter.com/hypn0sister

Pete RingMaster 09/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Phoenix Rising – Ignite

Just a number of months into their existence, it is fair to say that Phoenix Rising is already creating a real stir with their rousing sound; their praise drawing presence and suggested success in the “Best New Artist and Best Metal Band awards at this year’s MXD MAG Rock and Metal Awards evidence. Plenty of reasons for the buzz around them are now clear to be heard in their debut EP, Ignite. Offering four slices of rap rock infused with nu metal, the release is an ear grabbing, potential soaked introduction bred on imagination and creative energy.

Emerging from an ad vocalist Kent Summerour posted on Craigslist, the Dallas hailing band arose to swiftly grab local attention, in turn quickly finding broader landscapes to impress. With the two prong vocal attack of Summerour and Scott Lathwood in front of the invention of guitarist Lee Deane, bassist Allan Kurt, drummer James Espinoza, and Mark Ridlen on synths, Phoenix Rising embrace the inspirations of bands such as Hollywood Undead, Skillet, Papa Roach, Killswitch Engage, Union Underground, Linkin Park and more. The latter is probably the one which most comes to mind across their first release but adding to rather than deflecting from the band’s already evolving into individual sound.

Ignite opens up with Do You Know, a piano drawing ears as rhythms rustle together in the background. Soon the track is fully to the fore, not forceful but certainly magnetic as synth and guitar cradle the rap and following clean vocal persuasion. Though it suggests it might, the song never quite explodes into the hinted furor but persistently entices with melodic caresses, vocal dexterity, and a mercurial rhythmic attack.

It is a potent start laying down a strong reason to stay involved with the EP with drama which is soon escalated within the following If I Say No. Immediately there is a more intensive feel and muscle to the song, metal essences lining its composed but impassioned roar. Once more Summerour and Lathwood create a great web of vocal attack and temptation matched by the hooks and melodic enterprise of their companions. As with its predecessor, it is hard to say that major surprises crossed ears yet neither did predictability or a lack of fresh imagination.

Open You Up continues the EP’s trait of building on the song before with bigger and bolder endeavour; the track a tenacious metal infused rock holler mercurial in its breath, persistent in its rousing incitement before easily the best track of the four descends on the passions. Lights Out immediately throws a thick rhythmic coaxing out so easy to jump upon; an initial shuffle before the main event which erupts and incites like a mix of Union Underground and Powerman 5000. Virulent in its hooks and traps, aggressive in its energy and dynamics, the superb track is brief, explosive, and reason enough alone to breed a hungry appetite for the band’s sound.

Ignite is the kind of debut you just have to pay attention to and anticipate bigger and bolder adventures springing from as the band grows, matures, and their sound finds its unique voice. The fuss around them already means Phoenix Rising will have plenty to live up to but the EP and especially its final track suggests they are more than ready or the challenge.

Ignite is out now @ https://www.phoenixrisingofficial.com/shop and other stores.

https://www.facebook.com/PhoenixRisingOfficial/   https://twitter.com/PRofficialband

Pete RingMaster 02/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Draghkar – The Endless Howling Abyss

Already keeping 2018 busy with a pair of split releases with Desekryptor and Ossuarium respectively, US death metallers Draghkar are poised  to unleash their own four track infestation in the highly enjoyable shape of The Endless Howling Abyss.

Formed in 2016 by guitarist/vocalist BW (Grave Spirit/Gravesmasher), the band had gone through a few line-up changes before the first of those aforementioned splits was uncaged; bassist Daniel Kelley and drummer ES now completing the line-up. With a sound said to be inspired by Abhorrence and Amorphis and also increasingly embracing the likes of Molested, Mercyful Fate, and others as intimated within The Endless Howling Abyss, Draghkar has nurtured a potent mix of flavours and enterprise across their releases which certainly flourishes within the latest.

Traversing the Abyss rises from its bed with portentous strikes of sound, dramatic suggestion coating every surge of guitar and swing of rhythms until it settles into a controlled but portentous prowl. Every wave of riffs though brings a slight elevation in energy before it gathers for an intensive assault loaded with the throat gravel of BW. Grooves and melodic entangling escape the growing tempest, each with a lively swing that swiftly got under the skin. It is dark and ravenous, corruption at the creative heart but so very catchy and infectious too.

The excellent start continues with Swallowed by the Dark; a track not as mercurial in the attack of its animosity as in its predecessor but as rabidly venomous. It too shares grooves as viral as they are toxic, the guitar almost dancing on the rhythmic canter of the doom soaked bass splintered by senses splitting beats. It might be death metal bred but the track is prime rock ‘n’ roll, just in the most corrosive form of its incitement.

Next up Eternal Disintegration (Of The Body And Of The Mind) chains ears with one rich hook from its first breath, it a coaxing into a visceral canter but remaining to potently flavour the track’s subsequent emergence into a carnivorous predator. There is a bedlamic volatility in its depths which ignites even more invasive turbulence at times but never enough to extinguish the viral lure of its grooved invasion.

As if the release stored up all its malice and dissonance for its finale, Fading into Emptiness is an unsavoury consumption of the senses full of and leaving scars and fissures but again sweetening the malevolence with a great nagging of grooved temptation.

It is a fine end to a release which announces Draghkar as a definite to watch proposition within the death metal scene. Those previously mentioned splits made the suggestion, The Endless Howling Abyss insists on keeping them close.

The Endless Howling Abyss is released July 27th on CD through Craneo Negro Records (500 copies) and on cassette via Nameless Grave Records (75 copies). Both also available as well as digitally @ https://draghkar.bandcamp.com/album/the-endless-howling-abyss

 https://www.facebook.com/DraghkarBand/

 Pete RingMaster 24/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright