Stillhound – Think This Way

stillhound_RingMaster Review

Backing up their well-received debut single Seethe Unseen of earlier this year, Scottish quartet Stillhound are poised to release its successor Think This Way, revealing more of the depth to the band’s songwriting and sound at the same time. Whereas the first single wrapped its radiance in just as fascinating shadows, the new offering explores a brighter and lively climate, though again the band blends contrasting darker hues to great effect. It is fair to say that the band’s first release potently sparked attention; now its successor is here to dance with those satisfied ears and lure many more matching appetites.

single cover_RingMaster Review     Formed by school friends Fergus Cook, Laurie Corlett-Donald, and Dave Lloyd, and with a line-up completed by latest addition Cat Myers, Stillhound create soundscapes of dreamy and almost spatial electronic pop draped in atmospheric evocations. As shown by both their singles to date, Stillhound have a sound as inciting to the body and at times the dance-floor as immersive to ears and imagination. They are said to have holed up “various mountain lodges in their homeland taking inspiration from art, geography, and the far flung soundscapes created by Boards of Canada to the pop aesthetic of Tears for Fears,” to write their songs and you can feel that kind of scenery impacting on the singles, especially Think This Way with its eighties synth pop essences within an expansive almost stark radiance.

The new single makes a low key start but within seconds is a pulsating and provocative saunter littered with small but enticing electro hooks, moodier bass tones, and sparkling harmonies around endearing melancholy oozing vocals. It is when the song kicks up a livelier energy and attitude fuelled by a driving beat around its chorus, that the Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith inspiration shines, though it is only one rich hue in a tapestry of sound and magnetic ambiences entwining the reflective and invigorating vocals.

Busy and eventful, Think This Way lights the ears with ease, continuing the strong emergence of Stillhound with craft and virulent coaxing. It is early days and only two songs in but already we, as so many, have a taste for the band’s inviting aural travelogue. It is not a ravenous hunger yet, but in time it may be, especially if the band can build on this potent next step.

Think This Way is released on 3rd August and available as a free download @ https://soundcloud.com/mixmag-1/premiere-stillhound-think-this-way

http://stillhound.co.uk   https://www.facebook.com/stillhound

RingMaster 27/07/2105

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This City Limits – Too Scared To Swim

This City Limits Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

It is quite rewarding when a song does not initially make a big impact but leaves something behind, a lingering and persistent nudge saying ‘hold up, you might be missing out on something here’. So it was with Too Scared To Swim, the single from UK melodic punks This City Limits. It was certainly an enjoyable first meeting or two, but something continued to nag from it, elements repeating in the mind when away from its presence to lure attention back. It still does not compete as one of our very favourite songs uncaged this summer, but it ensures, whilst constantly pleasing ears, that the band’s upcoming second EP will be under close scrutiny.

Formed last year, the Leeds hailing quartet of brothers Will (vocals, guitar) and George Turner (guitar), Rob Burns (bass) and Josh Peters (drums) quickly made a potent statement with their debut EP Brittle Brass & Broken Bone. It easily lured the appetite of a growing number of fans with its potency, backed by the single Amputate which in turn stirred up greater media attention across national press and radio. Now it is the turn of James Hill produced Too Scared To Swim, as mentioned ahead of a new EP later this year, to rouse up national awareness with the support of a summer of shows and festival spots.

Vocals and guitars instantly descend on ears as the song opens up, both cast with emotion and open craft. Bass and drums are quickly there too, stirring up air and appetite with their feistier endeavour and attitudes as the melodic acidity and lure of the song blossoms a provocative and potent proposal. There are few big surprises in the song yet its contentment in switching its intensity and attack around is enjoyable and seamless. It has all the hallmarks of accomplished songwriting and skilled interpretation, two traits increasingly open in This City Limits.

Exploring a creative avenue reminding of bands such as Mallory Knox and We Are The Ocean at times, Too Scared To Swim suggests that This City Limits is still on the journey to find a standout sound distinct to them but they have found a presence and creativity which is not that far away. Maybe the new EP will unleash that next step, but if it is as likeable as Too Scared To Swim there will be few complaints anyway.

Too Scared To Swim is available from July 27th with accompanying video.

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

RingMaster 27/07/2015

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New Town Kings – Pack Up Bye Bye

newtownkings-packup_RingMaster Review

New Town Kings has more than earned the reputation as one of the UK’s most exciting new reggae propositions, through their irresistible live presence and just as potently last year’s outstanding Pull Up & Rewind EP, which drew as much rich attention upon its reboot earlier this year. Now the Essex based nine-piece are poised to grip national awareness and energy with new single Pack Up Bye Bye, a contagion of Jamaican reggae/ska pop which if there is such a thing as the sound of summer, has it ingrained in every vibrant pore.

Pack Up...cover_RingMaster Review   Formed in 2007, New Town Kings has lit up the UK and European live scene with their inventive and tenacious sound. They have been declared Britain’s greatest traditional Ska band, a claim backed up by shows with the likes of Reel Big Fish, The Slackers, The Skints, Congo Natty, and just recently Neville Staple. Acclaimed festival appearances have also only reinforced and increased the Colchester band’s stature over the years whilst the Pull Up & Rewind EP, as suggested earlier, set out a new statement of creative intent and success for the band. It was a declaration and ascent in sound which is now poised to whip up a new surge of fresh and broader appetites through Pack Up Bye Bye.

From its first rhythmic click the song flirts with ears and imagination, quickly taking them on a warm dance of catchy hooks, warm bubbly keys, and a vocal enticing from Dabs Bonner which just lures closer attention. Swinging with a reggae groove lined with choppy ska clips of guitar, the track just commands involvement from the listener, especially when unveiling its anthem of a chorus. The song is pure addiction from start to finish but that crescendo of virulence is simply irresistible, a sultry temptress offering the richest seduction within the lively simmer fuelling the rocksteady sculpted alchemy.

With a summer ahead of exciting festival and show endeavours, Pack Up Bye Bye with its open look at the angst of relationships, is the strongest, most vocal reason why New Town Kings should be on the agenda for all event goers and your new daily soundtrack.

Pack Up Bye Bye is available now as a free download @ https://soundcloud.com/newtownkings/pack-up-bye-bye-1

Upcoming New Town Kings live dates…

August 1st – Brightlingsea Music Fest (UK)

August 6-9th – Rebellion, Blackpool (UK)

August 13-16th – Boomtown, Winchester (UK)

September 11th – Colchester Arts Centre (UK)

September 12th – Norwich Arts Centre (UK)

September 17th – Cluney2, Newcastle (UK)

September 19th – Borderline, London (UK)

September 22th – Lille (F) – Venue tbc

September 23rd – Berlin (GER) – SO36 (w/ THE SLACKERS)

September 24th Hamburg (GER) – Hafenklang (w/ THE SLACKERS)

September 25th Cologne (GER) – Underground (w/ THE SLACKERS)

October 30th – Skalloween, New Cross Inn, London (UK)

October 31st – Aalst, (Belgium)

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

RingMaster 24/07/2015

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Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

The Landed – Friends

The Landed_RingMaster Review

Following up the catchy adventure of previous single She, UK band The Landed release a mellower but no less persuasive proposal with its successor Friends. The song reveals more of the depth and variety in the Colchester quartet’s sound and though, compared to its predecessor, it is a calmer stroll it comes with its own lively and magnetic energy.

Hailing from Colchester, the quartet of Dan Currie, Paul Jannece, and brothers Paul and David Hale have been regularly stirring up keen and supportive attention, especially once releasing their well-received self-titled EP in 2014. Its set of six alternative and indie rock bred songs soon lured interest of fans and media, as well as strong radio play through the likes of Tom Robinson at 6 Music and Huw Stephens at Radio 1. Earlier this year, She showed a new and more mature body to the band’s sound, a suggestion more than confirmed by Friends.

artwork_RingMaster ReviewThe title track from the band’s new EP, the new single swiftly has ears enticed with its opening caress of guitar and a quickly following and fuller lure of chords, melodies, and a darkly enticing bassline. There is an instant swing to the song too, one emulated in the strong vocals and the overall rhythmic dance of the growing song. As mentioned, the track shows a more restrained gait and energy to the last single yet every hook, twist in invention, and melodic smile is designed to and successfully seduce feet and voice into eager involvement.

Many bands have been given as references to The Landed sound, Fleetwood Mac, ELO, Noah And The Whale, and The Police amongst them, and certainly the last pair are whispers you can hear in the warm canter of the song. Their vivacious last single She still edges the two for personal tastes, but Friends potently shows that The Landed is no one-trick pony in potent songwriting and enjoyable sound, and that their new EP should be closely paid attention to.

Friends is available now.

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

RingMaster 24/07/2015

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The Winachi Tribe – Time For Love

Picture 7_RingMaster Review

Fancy giving feet and hips a healthy work out? Then take Time For Love, the new single from The Winachi Tribe, out for a ride. Consisting of two electro funk bred shuffles as soulful as they are blessed with a varied weave of additional flavours, the band’s debut release is the perfect incitement for those with the need to dance in their heart.

The Warrington / Leeds based funk driven collective emerged earlier this year out of Northern D.Funk collective China White, entangling inspirations from the likes of Sly & The Family Stone, Happy Mondays, Black Grape, Primal Scream, Massive Attack, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, and Ian Brown into their own diverse and fresh sounds. As young a band as it is, experiences across its members are deep, collaborations and tours with a range of artists from Alabama 3 and Keith Allen to The Furious Five included on the overall CV whilst percussionist Inder Goldfinger alone has been a member of Ian Brown’s band for thirteen years. With a line-up completed by vocalist Liam Croker, guitarist Jamie Mcgregor, bassist Richie Rich, keyboardist Antony Egerton, and drummer Sam Tushingham, The Winachi Tribe have hit the ground running with their first release, unleashing a soulfully infectious party at the same time.

Time For Love opens with inviting beats and a guitar jangle reminiscent of Talking Heads; The Tom Tom Club further coming to mind as percussion and vocals breathe their lively enticing into the expanding swing and flirtation of the song. A dark and pulsating bassline only adds to the draw whilst developing guitar enterprise and the ever captivating rhythms make a puppeteer to feet and body movement. The song saunters along with eighties/nineties funk revelry, the flames of horn provided by Tim Hutton alongside warm harmonies and the enticing lead vocals of Croker, further lighting up the song’s bustling scenery. With everything combined, Time For Love is a magnetism of nostalgia and originality. Manna for those with a passion of funk ‘n’ soul and pleasing temptation for those maybe less inclined to swing a hip or two.

Second song Plant The Seed, instantly offers a darker atmosphere and tone, but again with a virulence which only spreads the catchiness oozing from its second breath. Vocally Croker is soon mixing up his delivery too, enticing raps and mellow smouldering escaping his throat to match the similarly lively and varied sounds hugging his every word. As with its predecessor, a hint of Heaven 17 and additionally here Rip Rig & Panic plays with thoughts, especially around the great and thick temptation of female vocals. Emerging for personal tastes our favourite of the equally fine pair, the track reveals more of the depth and imagination within The Winachi Tribe songwriting and sound.

Completed by the Love Maze 4DD remix of Time For Love, the single is a masterful persuasion for ears and body, and an introduction to take even those of us generally lacking the keenest appetite for its style of music on a highly satisfying and eager adventure.

Time For Love is available via A1M Records from July 20th

https://www.facebook.com/thewinachitribe https://twitter.com/winachitribe

Upcoming Live Dates:

18th July – Single launch at Water Rats, London with Alabama 3 DJ set and support from Italian Band La Strange http://www.wegottickets.com/event/319583

27th August – Vinyl launch, The Ruby Lounge

29th August – Victorious Festival, Portsmouth, opening for Primal Scream & The Flaming Lips

5th September – Manchester Met Uni, ‘The Second Coming’ with Aziz Ibrahim, The Clone Roses, Cressa (DJ Set)

7th November – Shiiine On Weekender, Minehead Arena, Somerset with Happy Mondays, Stereo MCs, 808 State

RingMaster 20/07/2015

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We Came As Strangers – Still Life

WCAS_RingMaster Review

Ahead of third album Eyedom, English based seduction We Came As Strangers release their new single Still Life, a mesmeric embrace and teaser which inescapably stirs up the imagination and appetite for their oncoming full-length.

Since forming vocalist Ellem, guitarist Justin Sandercoe, keyboardist Owen Thomas, bass player Tim Harries, with drummer Tom Meadows has persistently fascinated and immersed ears and indeed thoughts with their increasingly evocative blend of folk, rock, and avant-garde invention. Previous albums Recipe for Adventure and Shattered Matter have taken the listener on flights of trippy alternative rock/pop. Acclaim and increasing stature has constantly followed in the wake of the band’s releases but if Still life is the full suggestiveness of what Eyedom will hold, We Came As Strangers’ greatest success and rewards are around the corner.

From the quirky opening keys, swiftly followed by the ever siren like tones of Ellem, the song romances the senses and imagination. Rhythms are soon adding their darker temperament and richness though whilst guitars and keys entwine their own thick and individually sultry melodic charms. In no time it is a bewitching persuasion locked in drama and creative flirtation. Ethereal and haunting, summery and shadowed, the song is simply virulent seduction, its chorus alone sparking tingles certainly down our spines.

The video below will reveal the rest of the song’s fascinating majesty and equally why, as for so many others, Eyedom just cannot engulf ears soon enough.

Still Life is available from July 20th

https://www.facebook.com/WeCameAsStrangers   http://wecameasstrangers.com/

RingMaster 20/07/2015

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Presents For Sally – Wishawaytoday

presents-for-sally-wishawaytoday-artwork-_RingMaster Review

Whatever the weather outside it is hard not to feel just a touch summery whilst embraced in Wishawaytoday, the new single from UK indie band Presents For Sally. The song is a lively hug of nineties indie pop and warm shoegaze ambience, united in an energetic and dynamic stroll which simultaneously provides a flirtatious romance for ears and imagination.

The two track release is the teaser for the trio’s forthcoming new album Colours & Changes, both via Saint Marie Records. Presents For Sally have been no strangers to acclaim and attention since forming in the late nineties, a host of singles and debut album A Touch of Joy, A Touch Of Sadness luring in fans and media alike. Sound wise Matt, Anna, and Phil have created a kaleidoscope like feel to their music, every twist of a song rearranging similar essences into new captivating designs and as you may rightly assume, Wishawaytoday and its companion Hits Like Kisses are no different.

Wishawaytoday swiftly saunters along with melodic and sonic flames tempered by a lovely dark and brooding bass tone. Once the vocals join the persuasion, things mellow a touch whilst still retaining and exploring a compelling fusion of light and dark. The heart and flow of the song is feisty though, the track, as it simmers boldly and smoulders tenaciously with melodic heat, a commandingly catchy incitement melding together whispers of bands like House of Love, My Bloody Valentine, and We Ghosts.

It alone wakes up an intrigued and keen anticipation of the upcoming full-length which the following Hits Like Kisses reinforces with its own individual theatre of sound. It opens with a lullaby like caress of melodies and harmonies which together create a celestial hug rich in radiance and emotive reflection. Around it though, a tempestuous air slowly brews; its own body intensifying with every passing second before erupting in a seemingly volatile but mercilessly enthralling wind of thick enticement, ridden by the still mesmeric and harmonious vocals and driven by crackling rhythms and fuzzy energy.

The first song is the eye candy and the second the drama of the single, and together the two mouth-watering encounters weave an inescapable tempting for Presents For Sally’s next rich endeavour.

Wishawaytoday is available now via Saint Marie Records digitally and as a 7” single @ http://www.saintmarierecords.com/products/551226-presents-for-sally-wishawaytoday and https://presentsforsally.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/presentsforsally

RingMaster 17/07/2015

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Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net