Curezum – One Hundred Years/The Top

Curezum Promo _RingMaster Review

It was hard to know how seriously to take the new two track single from Curezum, they a black metal tribute band to The Cure, and almost too easy to dismiss it without a chance. But everything deserves a piece of attention and as band and release provided a thoroughly potent and enjoyable time, thankfully we did give it some. It is probably fair to say that the single is not going to ignite major fires yet there is no escaping the highly persuasive and compelling job the band did with two particularly well known and for some revered tracks. Its success also shows how thin the veils between genres are at times when given a twist and infusion here and there.

Curezum - 10 Years Artwork _RingMaster Review   The project began with lead guitarist/keyboardist Mort Subite (Megaton Leviathan, Vaital Deul, Alfheimr) and drummer Martti Hill (Barrowlands), the band finding themselves united in imagining the relative simplicity of taking The Cure’s album Pornography and re-imagining it as a black metal proposition. It is probably fair to say that the Brits are an obvious inspiration and love for the pair too which only added to their enthusiasm to push the project forward. A search for the right musicians to help bring their idea to light and demands of the pair’s other projects took up plenty of the following time but eventfully a linkup with Billy Anderson (Blessing the Hogs, Porn, Solodolor) for additional production duties happened, he also providing bass on the single, with vocalist/rhythm guitarist Rob Vikernes completing the line-up.

The opening track to Pornography, One Hundred Years attaches itself to ears and an awaiting appetite with swiftly hypnotic rhythmic bait, its lure the spring board to recognisable acidic melodies and similarly potent hooks. Straight away though, the raw and almost insidious tone of the track provides a welcome but invasive quality, the guitars great abrasing irritancy against the dark seductive lure of the bass. The scarred and magnetic tones of vocalist Vikernes only add to the harshly tempestuous nature of the track too, the band soaking the atmospheric shadows and elegance of the song with their own pestilential hue.

It has to be said that the version is outstanding, a close rival to the original and able to stand alone as Curezum, not quite making it their own, give it a potent character change without losing the dark melancholic majesty of the original. The same applies to the other side of the single, The Top. Obviously taken from the album of the same name, this song also finds its familiar tones and essences infused with fiercer predacious intrigue and toxicity. Crawling over the senses, the song is cancerous, like creeping smog of venom guided by a prowling rhythmic contagion amidst a web of corrosive emotion and enterprise; the vocals the demonic heart at the centre of it all.

Whereas One Hundred Years holds on to some of its original virulence, its companion is a festering sore of pleasure becoming more intrusive and gripping over time. Both tracks are surprising treats, quickly devouring any doubts before venturing into the single’s cavern of dark ravenous delight. Curezum is currently working on a whole album of such enticements and after this, anticipation is definitely lively.

One Hundred Years/The Top is released digitally on November 28th with a physical release to come.

Pete RingMaster 26/11/2015

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The Slow Readers Club – Plant the Seed

TSRS_RingMaster Review

If there are any yet to fall into contagious arms of Cavalcade, the second album from UK indie/electronic band The Slow Readers Club, and indeed their rewarding sound then the new single from them is a major nudge in that direction. Taken from the encounter released earlier this year, Plant the Seed is a beacon for the seductively pulsating and captivating adventure of the band’s melodic imagination, and reason alone to take the band’s enthralling and emotively fuelled sound to the heart.

The Slow Readers Club - Plant the Seed - Artwork_RingMaster Review     To be honest virtually the whole of the Manchester quartet’s last album makes itself available as a potent single but for sure Plant the Seed is a rich flame within their fire of enticement. It also adds another confirmation to the quality of songwriting and simply creative imagination the band is renowned and being increasingly acclaimed for. Cavalcade declared The Slow Readers Club as one of not only Manchester’s but the UK most compelling and exciting underground bands; the single just confirms it again.

Plant the Seed opens on a teaser of rhythms alongside a spicy electronic melody, a tempting bait leading to the swiftly emerging vocal tones of keyboardist Aaron Starkie and guitarist Kurtis Starkie, both with their individual prowess wrapping ears in harmonic temptation. It is a rich seduction enjoyably given a just as gripping contrast by the pulsating and throaty lures of James Ryan’s bass and the clippy enterprise of drummer David Whitworth. It all unites with increasing potency as the song strolls through ears with a summery air and a skilfully sculpted range of textures, all thick enticement within the Depeche Mode meets Bronski Beat majesty of the song.

In some ways, Plant the Seed seems to have blossomed again in its own limelight, the single a glorious invitation hard to imagine many ignoring, and The Slow Readers Club, well they continue to leave us smiling with contentment.

Plant the Seed is out now via Scruff of the Neck Records through most online stores.

Pete RingMaster 25/11/2015

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Jimmy & The Revolvers – The Morning Paper

jatr_RingMaster Review

They do not come along as often as liked but this month sees another single from UK rockers Jimmy & The Revolvers, and just one more track which has the body swinging and pleasure flowing with consummate ease. The Morning Paper is a potently alluring mix of blues and jazz rock with indie and Brit pop which grips ears and feet from its first breath. Previous releases suggested that the Liverpool hailing band was one emerging proposition worth getting excited about, The Morning Paper is a confirmation.

Formed in 2013, Jimmy & the Revolvers quickly stirred attention with debut double A-sided single Aimee’s Song/Frosty. The end of that year saw the release of the Sunday Morning EP, another encounter earning open and increasing praise, and setting up 2014 for even stronger focus the way of the band. Radio play ensued whilst live the band went on to support Ian Skelly (former The Coral) amongst their own flood of successful gigs which included playing Liverpool Sound City. The unveiling of Whistle For My Love only stirred up more keen appetites and awareness that year, the single subsequently picked up for radio airing around the globe. This year has seen the quartet of vocalist/acoustic guitarist Jay Rehm, vocalist/bassist Kurt Riley, electric guitarist Jimmy Moon, and drummer Ash Michael continue to play shows up and down the UK as well as host a monthly club night in their home city. Now it is The Morning Paper poised to push the band into more ears and no doubt in turn, new welcoming hearts.

The song opens on the coaxing strum of Rehm’s guitar, a lure soon joined by the spicier tone of Moon’s strings and the crispy percussive bait laid by Michael. Within a few more breaths, the song is alight with the flames of brass and vibrant energy, a dynamic mix not too far from The Jam. A more relaxed stroll breaks out next but it too is just a moment in the fluid passage of the song; bluesy endeavour and that perpetual fire of brass subsequently entwining with country scented melodies and indie pop enterprise.

The track continues to saunter and leap as its persuasion gets stronger and more irresistible; building a feel good proposal sure to spark feet and hips into action and set a warm glow in emotions. Captivation is inescapable, from the song and the single package which also includes an acoustic live cut of Drink & The Devil Blues, a blues/folk hug as much seeded in nostalgic hues as it is a modern passion.

Produced by Carlo Variola of Ocean Waves Productions, The Morning Paper is one of those sparks that lights up any day, much as most of their songs to date.

The Morning Paper is out now via Ugly Man Records.

Upcoming live date:

29/11 Manchester Gullivers

04/12 Birmingham Actress and Bishop

05/12 Stockport The Blossoms

19/12 Doncaster awaiting venue name

Pete RingMaster 24/11/2015

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Steve Young – Hold Me Close featuring Gemma Mewse

Steve Young _RingMaster Review

With a crowd funded album heading our way in 2016, British singer/songwriter Steve Young potently whets the appetite for it and simply his evocative sound with new single Hold Me Close. Featuring the rich vocal tones of Gemma Mewse alongside Young’s own, the track grabs ears from start to finish, confirming why a great many are sending acclaim and strong attention the way of the Londoner.

Before venturing into his solo exploits, Young has been a keenly sought after musician over the last clutch of years, his talents as a session guitarist seeing him work with a host of popular artists. Starting out in a London based rock band which undertook many successful UK tours, Young’s craft and prowess subsequently saw him playing with artists such as Lionel Richie, Peter Andre, Gareth Gates, and Delta Goodrem. In 2007, Young became the touring guitarist for former Savage Garden front man Darren Hayes, a gig taking him across Europe, Canada, Australia, and the US, allowing him to perform in venues like The Royal Albert Hall, Wembley Arena, and Sydney State Theatre. Also a co-writer on Darren Hayes’ 2012 album Secret Codes & Battleships as well as joining forces the same year with West End Superstar, Ramin Karimloo (Phantom, Les Mis, Miss Saigon), it had been and was a busy time, which prevented Young getting time to work on his own music.

That moment to concentrate on his personal music came the following year though and Young seized it, exploring his love of blues, rock and country thereon in. Last year saw the release of debut EP Little Things, a well-received encounter employing essences from inspirations like early Clapton, John Mayer, David Gray, The Eagles, and Turin Breaks. Since then, Young has been taking his sound to the live scene, playing Country 2 Country Festival at the London O2, Rhythms Of The World Festival, and The Edinburgh Fringe amongst many other shows. Now as mentioned ahead of his first album, Young has unveiled Hold Me Close, an appetite pleaser from start to finish which tempts even those of us with a more hellacious taste in music.

The song opens on a piano’s caress, a guitar swiftly joining the reflective lure before the strong voice of Young brings further expression and temptation. With strings soon an additional warm melancholic suggestiveness, as the song broadens with the beguiling tones of Mewse, everything blossoms into an inviting croon of melodic and country rock. Ebbing and flowing like waves on an inviting yet lonely beach, the song continues to enticingly engage ears and thoughts, with poise and beauty. Fair to say the vocals steal the show, with strings and keys in close order, but across the track everything works as one to incite and keep keen attention involved.

Written and sung from the heart, Hold Me Close is a melodic and harmonic romance sure to awaken many more to Steve Young, and anticipation for his upcoming album.

Hold Me Close is out now.

Upcoming Steve Young live dates:

Nov 26th – West End Centre, Aldershot – with Jo Harman

Dec 10th – Coach and Horse, Wellingborough

Pete RingMaster 23/11/2015

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Counting Coins – All That I Need

CC_RingMaster Review

It has been a hectic year so far for UK rockers Counting Coins; live shows and tours across the UK and Europe a source of great attention and praise for the band as well as recent single Don’t Look Down, and it continues with the unveiling of its successor. The second single taken from the Hull based quintet’s forthcoming album, All That I Need bobs along on ska bred riffs and devilish rhythms bound in spicy melodies that incite ears and imagination as potently as the equally effective vocal and lyrical incitement. It is one of those invitations impossible to refuse as it gives body and lust a rousing run out; simply one endearing and energetic romp of premeditated goodness.

artwork_RingMaster Review     Formed in 2009, Counting Coins has grown a seriously anthemic fusion of ska, gypsy punk, swing, and hip-hop over the years. From their first pair of EPs, Take the Ride and Reach for the Sky in 2010 and 2013 respectively, the band has shown a creative tenacity that wakes up the instinct to romp and stomp. Their live presence has only increased their reputation, the sharing of stages with bands such as Random Hand, Sonic Boom 6, The New Town Kings, The Talks, Jaya the Cat, Babar Luck (ex-King Prawn), The King Blues, The JB Conspiracy, and Neville Staple adding to an increasingly acclaimed reputation. A few weeks back Don’t Look Down had bodies of fans and media jumping around physically and in praise, a repeated success well within the creative grasp of All That I Need.

Opening on a lone and instantly enticing guitar, the bass soon adding its exploits, the track is quickly swinging along with a melodic smile and rhythmic temptation. The vocals of Harry Burnby just as swiftly bring another strain of infectious enterprise, his bouncy delivery matching that of strings plucked by Matty Dennison and Rob Green. In full stroll, like The Beat meets Reel Big Fish but with more variety to its hues, All That I Need swaggers with joyful tenacity as flames from trumpeter Will Chalk blaze over the throaty lure of bass and the keen swipes of drummer Sam Burnham.

It is an easy going proposal offered by the song but a virulently captivating one which has feet jumping, vocal chords exercised, and emotions flying with the outstanding encounter. The last Counting Coins single meant that interest of the band’s new album was thick and now with All That I Need doing the tempting, and with a great video in tow, anticipation is full and a touch impatient.

All That I Need is available from November 23rd across a global range of digital platforms including iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Music and Deezer.

Pete RingMaster 23/11/2015

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Coquin Migale – LUV

Evolution 2015_RingMaster Review

With the release of LUV, 2015 has seen three tantalising reasons why 2016 might just be the year of Coquin Migale. The band’s new single continues where its predecessors left off, providing a mesmeric blend of shoegaze, Brit pop, and ethereal atmospherics, and just like the previous pair, it sublimely lights ears and tempts the imagination.

Formed in 2013, Coquin Migale has been no strangers to attention and acclaim, certainly over the past twelve months or so. Early on their live presence earned strong support and a swiftly growing fan base whilst the EPs, Yellow Room and Feel, sparked even broader awareness and praise lit recognition of the band. This year, the singles Gold and Socotra took things to another level with fresh fans lured and media acclaim garnered whilst showing more of the rich hues within the band’s sound. Expectations were that maybe things would settle now, that the band has shown us all it currently had in its inventive locker but no, LUV swiftly offers another strain of mellow seducing amidst an intricate weaving of flavours in one fascinating and alluring serenade.

The song opens with a single guitar and a melody which seems to wink as it invites ears to grab its trailing elegance. It is just the first turn in a maze of intriguing endeavour and sonic imagination, its House of Love meets Maff beckoning soon broadening into a melodic painting of Brit pop revelry, melodic rock drama, and psych rock exploration. That again is only a slither of where LUV ventures and takes willing ears, the track almost tempestuous in its enterprise and masterful in its seductive persuasion.

Arguably their most inventively adventurous song yet, LUV epitomises everything about Coquin Migale that is getting folk very excited, and yet it is easy to feel that the quartet of Alex Soper (vocals/ guitar), Jack Brooks (guitar), Stevie Kane (bass), and Josh Holmes (drums) are still only just beginning to tap into their potential. Happy days!

LUV is released November 20th via End Of The Trail Records/Rough Trade Distribution.

Pete RingMaster 20/11/2015

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The Sneaky Nixons – Sex

LisaJamie_RingMaster Review

UK band The Sneaky Nixons describe themselves “as an angry, semi-political, semi-religious, part-feminist sloppy activist group who play riotous, steam-train guitar music.” From one song alone much of that is maybe not so obvious but there is no denying that new single Sex is one mighty vehicle of mass seduction. Sauntering through ears in a flirtation of punk, ska, rock ‘n’ swing, and vaudevillian theatre, the song is a confrontational mischief on ears and imagination, and quite bewitching.

HFartwork-2_RingMaster Review     Taken from the forthcoming eponymous compilation album from Across the Ocean Waves Productions, which features the most exciting bands active on Liverpool’s vibrant music scene, Sex is a slice of rock ‘n’ roll to incite and inflame. It follows a clutch of singles released this year and The Coup de Grace EP which spawned most of them, each offering tracks which reveal a different strain of The Sneaky Nixons’ sound with Sex the most devilishly impressive of the lot so far.

The single strolls in on stabbing riffs and crisp beats beneath a sultry sky lit by the blazing temptation of brass. Settling into a gentler canter initially, with a touch of Brit pop and alternative rock to the melodies and vocals, the track is soon rising up to eye ball the listener with its creative revelry and punkish intent, both bound in more of the thick ska bred infectiousness.

Like Libertines meets The Talks meets The Vox Dolomites, Sex is an aurally salacious treat with a hard hitting video to inflame the senses further, and another mightily impressive step in the rise of The Sneaky Nixons’

Sex is released November 20th via Across the Ocean Waves Productions @

Pete RingMaster 20/11/2015

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