Story – Hopeless But Hoping

Story_RingMasterReview

With a sound living up to their name; music and songs which tell a tale for ears and imagination to get wrapped up in, UK band Story release their second EP, Hopeless But Hoping this month. Carrying six tracks fusing melodic metalcore with post hardcore amidst rock scented infectiousness, the release is a captivating and accomplished encounter which is as much at ease brawling with the senses as caressing them with suggestive melodies.

Formed in 2014, the Sheffield hailing band seeded their sound in the inspirations of bands such as Memphis May Fire, Of Mice & Men, Mallory Knox, and Young Guns. They quickly earned a potent reputation for their live show, sharing stages with the likes of Tek-One, Qemists, ACODA, Shields, Silent Screams, The Call Back Academy, and Summerlin over time whilst the release of their first EP and debut single Father Forgotten, nudged a broader attention. Now they are unveiling Hopeless But Hoping to stir things up again and to greater heights, a success not too difficult to contemplate.

Produced from within the band, Hopeless But Hoping opens with Story’s new single/video Article 10. It lays a gentle melodic touch upon ears initially, evocative guitar charm stroking ears and imagination before a bigger rumble brews and escapes the band. It soon relaxes as the impressive vocals of Bill Hobson step forward with the narrative, the guitars of Liam Gratton and Matt Baxter almost dancing around him with their enterprise. Equally, between them the pair uncage some feisty and imposing riffs to match the throbbing rhythms of bassist Tom Walker and drummer Chris Ogden as Hobson shows his fluid switch to angst fuelled aggression is equal to his harmonic delivery.

Story Artwork_RingMasterReviewThe track is a fiery and eventful encounter with a nice line in unpredictability, not a trait which every song exploits as well but when they do as in the following Push Me Away, the imagination cannot help but get involved. The second track swings in on a lure of tenacious rock ‘n roll, calming down again as vocals join the bubbling affair before rising up with energy into an emotive snarl. Great backing roars and keen spirals of sonic endeavour add to the contagious tempting and presence of the song; it as its predecessor offering plenty of textures and twists to be forcibly enticed by.

Community flares up next, its emotive and volatile blaze catching attention if without finding the same individuality and success as the songs before it. With open craft from the band in sound and songwriting as well as a strong anthemic feel to it, the song certainly keeps enjoyment high before Letting Go serenades ears as an emotive turbulence shares its ire in the background. Melodies and vocals gently and impressively hug the senses, proceeding to reveal their tormented side as in time provocative flames of sound and emotion erupt in a thick engulfing of the senses. It is a slow burner compared to the first pair of songs, but grows to be another highly agreeable moment in the adventure of the EP.

The release’s busily textured and energetic title track sizzles within ears next, Hopeless But Hoping a song which is as riveting as it is a touch frustrating. It leaps in with an irresistible turbulence of grooves and rhythms aligned to raw vocals but then lets the strength of its thrilling start wane as its intensity and drama drops. It saves itself though with some fascinating turns into atmospheric and melody fuelled resourcefulness to add a great element of surprise to an encounter which, as great as it turns out, just feels like it could have been even bigger and bolder.

Carry Me Home finishes the release, its rousing air and boisterous enterprising alone a blend to grab attention. It might not be a song ripe with uniqueness, something you could say about the EP generally, but as Hopeless But Hoping, it has a wealth of invention and drama, as well as the band’s undeniable skills, to leave ears and emotions healthily satisfied. The potential of their sound also makes a lingering impact suggesting that Story has a potent time ahead of them.

The Hopeless But Hoping EP is released March 4th, details @ http://storyofficial.bigcartel.com/product/hopeless-but-hoping-ep-pre-order

https://www.facebook.com/StoryOfficialUK  https://twitter.com/storyofficialuk

Pete RingMaster 04/03/2016

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Giving In To Ghosts – Chasing Waves

Giving Into Ghosts Press Shots 22/10/13

Bursting out from South Wales, post hardcore band Giving In To Ghosts have given a very solid promise drenched introduction to themselves with their Chasing Waves EP. The band’s debut is a vibrant and engaging, as well as pleasingly aggressive, entrance by the Cardiff quartet. It is an accomplished and imaginative proposition which without the spark to really light up the passions certainly leaves a hungry appetite in place for the band ahead. Its sound and the band’s presence is not as unique amongst other similarly fuelled bands as you feel both will become in the future, but again still feeds an intrigue and attention for the foursome which cannot be underestimated.

Formed only last year, Giving In To Ghosts have taken little time to trigger a keen and passionate fanbase around their region which is now starting to spread further afield with equal success. Pulling in inspirations from the likes of Funeral For A Friend, Architects, and Reuben their sound certainly has a wide appeal as proven by their successful support slots to bands such as Continents, The Browning, Acoda, and Beneath My Feet. Recorded at Not In Pill Studios in Wales with Martyn ‘Ginge’ Ford and Matt Bond (Slipknot, Trivium, Bullet For My Valentine), Chasing Waves is a potent first persuasion to hit the whole of the country, as said a tremendously solid attention grabbing declaration revealing the open potential within the band.

Rapture starts things off and immediately has ears under the cosh of the raw squalling tones of bassist James Hardiman, his vocals Giving In To Ghost Cover Artworkabrasing the senses and lyrical intent within firm rhythms and a sonic coaxing from the guitars. It is not a dramatic explosion but one with strong grooves and melodic designs from lead guitarist Julian Thomas alongside the equally welcoming riffs of Michael Thomas making an appealing start. The clean vocals of Michael Thomas equally impress; his delivery gentle and a good temper to the gruffness of Hardiman though you feel placing them side by side rather than alternatively could work better. The punchy beats of drummer Alex Bargh and solo casting of Julian complete the expressive forceful colour of the song and arguably stand out on the track most but all aspects skilfully unite for a strong first strike from the release.

The following Sirens makes a less forceful appearance but certainly is as fiery as its predecessor, going on to build a magnetic canvas for the switching extremes of vocals to unleash their narratives. The bass offers a mean growl to the rapacious riffs and antagonistic rhythms as do his scowls, but there is a less potent element to the song against the last which means the track fully satisfies but does not linger. Nevertheless with a pleasing sonic temptation and a belligerent intensity the song proves its worth and reinforces the potency of the band.

The title track opens with a riveting melodic caress instantly joined by the equally warm clean vocals. The bass adds tempering shadows to this embrace to expand the depth and pull of the initial coaxing before the sinews and passionate bruising within the song makes a loud shout. Evolving through both sceneries the best song on the EP provides an evocative adventure which reveals much more about the strength and depth of the band’s songwriting and sound whilst stretching the quality of the encounter. Employing emotively powered keys and a mesmeric spiral of sonic enterprise within a growing snarling dark side, the song is a formidable indication of the creative heart within the band and again its undeniable promise.

Final song To The Sun veers into the more brutal side of the band certainly compared to the reflective warmth of the previous song, it ravishing the senses with grouchy rhythms and caustic vocal spite whilst still drawing on the melodic craft and expression of the band. It is an intimidating and highly alluring end to a very satisfying release, one which maybe suggests more than it delivers but only in the quality you feel is there in the band waiting to evolve. Chasing Waves does not make claims as the new best thing in post hardcore but it certainly provides more than enough to suggest Giving In To Ghosts has the ability and sound to be a loud voice in the UK scene.

http://www.facebook.com/GivingInToGhosts

8/10

RingMaster 29/03/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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GIVING IN TO GHOSTS to unveil ‘Chasing Waves’, on 31st March‏

Giving Into Ghosts Press Shots 22/10/13
DEBUT EP DROPS THIS SPRING!
 
South Wales Post-Hardcore outfit Giving In To Ghosts drop their ball-busting debut EP Chasing Waves on Monday 31st March through all stores.
Blending emotive drive with defiant belligerence, Giving In To Ghosts wear their hearts on their sleeves, producing a sound that deftly merges genres. By extracting influence from everyone from fellow South-Wales icons Funeral For A Friend, to Brit bruisers Architects and cult heroes Reuben, the band’s reach and output is notably diverse.
Since their inception in 2013, Cardiff hardcore beasts ‘Giving In To Ghosts’ have already destroyed a host of fleapit venues throughout Wales and England with their boundless energy and impassionate blend of melodic hardcore. Now, after supports with Continents, The Browning, Acoda and Beneath My Feet, ‘Giving In To Ghosts’ are primed to step up with the national release of their explosive debut EP ‘Chasing Waves’.
To record ‘Chasing Waves’, the ascending four piece laid siege at Not In Pill Studios in Wales with Martyn ‘Ginge’ Ford and Matt Bond (who’s past credits include Slipknot, Trivium and Bullet For My Valentine) behind the desk. The record was completed by the end of 2013 and the result is highly impressive.
‘Chasing Waves’ is loaded with slamming guitar parts, colossal drumming, and engrossing dual vocal lines that twist and contort. The opening track on the EP ‘Rapture’ is quite simply massive and an ideal sampler for the shape of things to come. ‘Sirens’ bursts with unbridled vigour and a soaring refrain, while the record’s namesake ‘Chasing Waves’ displays the quartet’s cunning knack for stripping back the elements to deliver an engaging cut that will lodge itself in your brain for ages. As ‘To The Sun’ rounds off their striking debut with its edgy riffs and brutal drive, its clear that this record is sure to elevate the fiery tune chiefs to a national level.
= GIVING IN TO GHOSTS RELEASE ‘CHASING WAVES’ ON MONDAY 31st MARCH THROUGH ALL OUTLETS =
 Giving In To Ghost Cover Artwork

 

Lay Siege – Obolus

In what has been a constant stream of British metalcore and extreme metal releases so far this year Obolus the debut mini album from UK metalers Lay Siege, emerges as one of the most impressive. Though the release does not breakout with anything truly stunning, it powerfully indicates greater promise ahead and stands as a strongly enjoyable and commanding release which is heads above a great many of the similar veined releases to appear over the past few months.

Northampton based quartet Lay Siege since forming in 2010, have taken no time in becoming a force in the Midlands underground metal scene lighting up stages alongside bands like Devil Sold His Soul, Feed the Rhino, ACODA, Heart of a Coward, Carcer City, and While She Sleeps. This year will see them venturing further throughout the UK and into Europe which with the release of Obolus as their newest part of their armoury, makes it not beyond expectations to imagine them rising and growing higher in stature.

Obolus certainly marks them as a band with real strength in their sound and songwriting. As mentioned the release gives the suggestion of promise and greater things ahead but it is impossible not to recognise the musicianship and craft going on already. Starting with Explorer the album confronts the senses with towering riffs and titanic rhythms linked by intricate yet unexaggerated technical ability. The opener bundles through the ear with a greed and power to leave one gasping. The track is not rippling with originality but has a freshness and vibrancy which is open. Musically the song skirts through multiples avenues of ideas without lingering in any to make an unpredictable riot of sound.

The following storm The Ferryman worries and oppresses the bruises caused by its predecessor whilst treating the ear to further inventive melodic and imaginative creativity of the band. It attacks in a similar vein but with good variation under its surface to make for another excellent three minutes. Many have accused the release of having too much similarity across its length and one can understand that with the overall bruising encounter it offers but that just makes for an album which needs closer attention and focus than most to find its rewards and bubbling invention beneath the storm.

Snarling Teeth prowls and taunts the ear with more explosive rhythms from drummer Lewis Niven and hungry basslines from Dave Bartlett. The track has a Pantera/sludge groan to its weight which ignites a deeper infection, the vocals of Konrad Barrick splattering the ear with bile and tortured expression alongside the taunting mesmeric dark shadowed play of guitarist Jamie Steadman. All the songs loiter around the three minute mark and work well at that length, punchy and crisp in presence but this is the one time one groans as it lays down its last note, the pleasure it brings making one not only wanting but needing it to linger around much longer. The song confirms the thought that the delivery of Barrick maybe lacks enough diversity across the seven tracks, great though he is, but it is a minor issue here with the qualities of the songs but ahead might become a problem for some but we will see.

Glitches and Wastelands continue the bombardment and explosive engagement with equally impressive effect, the band showing further skill and spread of good ideas to their music. The dexterity and thought shown by the band in all aspects is striking and sets the band apart from other new extreme metal bands.

Obolus is a definite grower, a release which consumes and evolves within the affections at a slower rate than most but to a deeper effect. After a few plays the release drew full praise but as the album exposed its might more and more that positivity grew in to a full affection. Yes the album has limitations and hides its individualism a little too deeply but it also marks Lay Siege as a band with a mighty future if they progress and explore themselves even deeper.

Closing with the combative Solitary Confinement further crushing the senses, Obolus is a fine and impressive debut. Lay Siege is a band on the rise and we for one cannot wait for their next assault.

www.facebook.com/laysiege

RingMaster 01/08/2012

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