The Atarka Interview

Hi and thank you for sparing time to chat with us.

AB: Thanks for reaching out to us, looking forward to getting into this.

Could you first introduce the band and tell us how it came to be?

I’m Adam Bayliss and I play bass, and I’m with Dan McCarthy who plays guitar.

AB: Atarka came from a desperation to write our own music. I think that we both found that in our last band the writing process wasn’t as equal or open to everyone’s ideas. So we started writing our own music on our own for Atarka.

How would you define not only your sound but the creative character of the band?

AB: Our sound is just a culmination of all of the things that we love in music. Melody, groove, heaviness. We like to tell stories in our music, some fictional and some are allegories from life lessons we’ve learned.

You have already touched on it  but how have those previous musical experiences for band members been embraced in or had an influence on what you do now?

AB: Between the 5 of us, we’ve all had previous musical experiences through education, bands and work. One thing I embraced for Atarka was the idea of “you get what you put in”. When you’re in bands at a younger age, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that everything will just fall into place as long as the music is good. But that’s just not true. You need to work hard and put the effort in, you need to look at every band that surrounds you and put in 100% more effort than they are. Not in a competitive way, but more as a means of raising your own standards.

Is there a particular process to the band’s songwriting?

AB: Well I think we had quite an unconventional process to writing our first album due to line up changes. Originally it was myself and Dan writing songs in his flat, using Logic as an aural notepad for ideas. We only had one goal: to write, record and release an album. We had about 15-18 ideas and fleshed them out into full songs. We also took on some lyric writing for a couple of our early tracks until Jamie (Vocals) became more involved. He took our ideas and edited them where he saw fit. When Alex (guitar) and Phil (Drums) joined, we showed them our tracks and they added new depth to the songs that we loved. So me and Dan came up with the basis, and the other guys added their personal stamps on each song we have.

Would you tell us about your latest release?

AB: ‘Sleeping Giant’ is our debut album and it’s available from March 27th. I feel there’s something for every kind of metal fan on this album. There’s melody, catchy riffs and vocal melodies, heavy breakdowns you can move your head to, and tracks to absolutely destroy someone in the pit.

What are the major inspirations to its heart and themes?

AB: I’ve been a huge fan of melodic death metal for about 15 years now, specifically the Gothenburg scene with bands like In Flames, At The Gates, Soilwork etc. But also a major influence for myself is Mastodon, the way they structure songs and use their riffs to explore the stories they tell is something I’ve always loved since I first heard ‘Crack the Skye’.

DM: The themes of ‘Sleeping Giant’ are based around different stories from our own lives and a few allegorical tales. Mental health, addiction and even history. We have one track called ‘Tollund Man’ – based around these perfectly preserved bodies found in a peat bog in Denmark. So it’s a real mixed bag if you don’t look deep into the lyrics. But they all come from desperate situations.

I am always intrigued as to how artists choose track order on albums and EP’s and whether in hindsight they would change that. What has been the deciding factor for you or do songs or the main do that organically?

AB: I know that when it came to track order for the album, Jamie (vocals) had an idea straight off the bat. So we just put that into a playlist, went away and listened to it. I don’t think there were too many changes. It’s just about what feels and sounds right for the album. But you also need to keep the audience in mind. You need to keep them captivated.

What do you find the most enjoyable part of being in a band and similarly the most cathartic?

AB: I really enjoy the song writing process, creating new music and getting excited to hear the final product. It’s a rewarding process, from inception all the way to hearing a song you created, fully mixed and mastered.

Also, nothing quite beats playing a decent show. Feeling the music alongside the audience and your band mates, when the crowd are begging for one more song from you. I don’t think anything can match that.

For anyone contemplating checking you out live give some teasers as to what they can expect.

AB: Well, Jamie is a natural born frontman; crowd interaction just comes naturally to the guy. I mean, all the guys in the band can put on a great show. This is something I’ve not experienced before, there’s always been at least one guy that freezes up and can’t come out of his shell. We just want to put on a great show and party with the people that come out to see us.

What has been your most thrilling moment on stage to date?

AB: For me it has to be when we played KK’s Steel Mill in Wolverhampton. It’s a great new venue and we got the chance to play the big stage. The crowd were phenomenal, the other bands on that night played amazing sets. It was just one of those perfect shows. And it was also surreal to see KK Downing in the audience.

Do you have live dates coming up?

DM: Nothing we can reveal just yet, but keep an ear to the ground.

What else can we expect in the near future?

DM: We’ve got three upcoming singles, accompanied by music videos in support of the upcoming album, and some stuff that we can’t quite reveal yet.

What are the major inspirations to you sound wise and as a musician?

AB: Well, other than the bands I mentioned earlier, I’d have to list bands such as Behemoth, Enslaved, Alcest, Alter Bridge, Baroness, and Anaal Nathrakh. If it’s heavy or melodic – it’s probably going to influence me one way or another.

And finally what song or release would you say was the spark to your passion for music?

AB: I was raised on music from the 60s and 70s. So one of the first artists that really stuck with me was T. Rex. Marc Bolan was such an enigmatic character and quite a surreal song writer at times; something just clicked with me and inspired me to want to make music.

DM: I was raised on Zeppelin, particularly LZ IV. That was the initial catalyst in getting me into music.

Many thanks once again; anything else you would like to add?

Just to say thanks again for the chat, it was a lot of fun answering these questions, and to look out for ‘Sleeping Giant’ – available for purchase and streaming on March 27th.

 

Check Atarka out further @…

https://www.atarka.co.uk   https://www.facebook.com/atarkaofficial/   https://twitter.com/Atarkaofficial

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 24/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Erudite Stoner – Self Titled

Erudite Stoner_RingMasterReview

There has been quite a few ear seducing instrumental albums over the past year or so but it is hard to remember any as charming yet emotively striking as the self-titled debut album from Erudite Stoner. A one man acoustic based project from Brazil, the band creates music which simply immerses the imagination in beauty and suggestive intrigue. Nothing is imposing and no elements forced, but sound and album provide the paint for a myriad of mental pictures and emotive explorations.

Erudite Stoner is the creation of Matheus Novaes, a guitarist leaning on inspirations from the like of Alcest, Agalloch, Gustavo Santaolalla, and Ulver for his first album. Weaving the potent scents of post-rock, shoegaze, doom, and classical guitar into his sound, the Erudite Stoner freely and so often sublimely caresses ears and strokes the imagination across nine tracks of aural majesty. The pieces of music are the perfect length, never too long and over pushing their persuasive limits but equally never too short and leaving the conjuring of imagery adrift. Together tracks create a seduction hard to get enough of and easy to drift away with time and time again.

The release opens with Spiritual Deliverance, a piece of music initially wrapped in nature’s lonely hug whilst sharing melodic melancholy. A warmth and escape from that harsher climate subsequently surrounds ears, the embrace of acoustic and electric guitar as gentle and descriptive as it is at times dramatically tenacious. It is a bewitching start to the album which continues in the similarly melancholic Alienist. Darker hues line the track’s scenic tempting of melody and tone though, essences flirting with thoughts like shadows in the shade of a lonely yet mesmeric day.

art_RingMasterReviewThrough the emotive fascination of Ride to Nowhere with its sultrily melodic calm and the elegant theatre of Far Away From City Walls, imaginative interpretation and pleasure only increases. The second provokes thoughts of innocent smiling children within depressing and oppressing landscapes; a superb merger of contrasting shades of sound and emotion skilfully woven before the riveting majesty of There is No Home sends the listener into new and quaint but equally cosmopolitan lands.

The song, as with the craft and skill of Novaes, easily inspires praise, their tempting and composing creating the most inspiring and engrossing moment yet within the release though it still gets eclipse by emerging favourite Waiting For the Storm. Listening to the track is like its title’s suggestion with a melodic peace initially romancing ears and attention while around it slightly darker essences are glimpsed and eventfully felt in a dynamic and deliciously intensive finale. The piece is simply irresistible, a rousing companion for ears and thoughts.

The pair of Sand Path and Roads to Somewhere continues to keep both those aspects busy, each providing their own individual and tempting palette of melody and emotive expressive for the listener to wrap themselves in before the brief and folkishly intimate Left Behind brings the thoroughly enjoyable and bewitching adventure to a close.

Erudite Stoner, band and album, is a proposition of sheer beauty which it is hard to imagine anyone failing to be easily touched and seduced by. Go treat yourselves is our sole recommendation.

The Erudite Stoner album is out now @ https://eruditestoner.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/Erudite-Stoner-784870508325321/?fref=ts

Pete RingMaster 19/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Deathwhite – Ethereal

Deathwhite band 2014

Looking for something intriguing with a fresh breath but still holding that raw edge which suggests that impressive early days have the potential to lead to major encounters? Then try checking out the Ethereal EP from US dark melodic metallers Deathwhite, a striking blaze of inventive and superbly crafted songs which rigorously capture the imagination and ignite the senses. The debut release from the band is an honest and striking introduction to the band, one unafraid to show its honed and less polished edges. It is also an encounter impossible not to get excited about as dramatic landscapes pull the listener into immersive and provocative explorations which leave senses and emotions as keen as a swiftly established appetite for the band’s sound.

Deathwhite was formed in 2012, its secretive line-up already well-established in extreme metal bands. The project is a vehicle for its members to explore new avenues, taking inspirations from the likes of Katatonia, mid-90’s Paradise Lost, Alcest, In the Woods, Green Carnation, Antimatter, and early Anathema into their emerging invention. Despite a semi-aborted EP which the band began last year, Ethereal is the unveiling of the band. Recorded at Pittsburgh’s Very Tight Studios with producer/engineer Matt Very earlier this year (with its closing song recorded in the fall of 2013 at a different studio), the six-track proposition takes little time in making a rich impression and placing Deathwhite deeply into the gaze of attentions radar.

The release opens with its title track, a brief instrumental crafted by expressive guitar with emotive melodic hues. It is a thoroughly Deathwhite Ethereal coverengaging entrance to the EP which hints at things to come without revealing too much, similar to the band’s presence online. What does swiftly come next is a glorious rhythmic incitement as the following When I (Wasn’t) You bursts into life. Roaming beats of drums make a punchy bait without being demanding, continuing their impressive coaxing as guitars gently and then with a fiery breath swarm around them. It is a dramatic mix which sets up an instant appetite for the song; one soon fed by the roving emotive prowess of the guitars and deep throated shadows from the bass, whilst strong if also at times unpolished vocals unfurl the narrative. As contagious as it is melancholically imposing, the track almost stalks the imagination as it virulently infects the passions. Individual skills are openly appealing as is the united tempest of their creativity and though the production is also raw in its touch it tempers its less forgiving side by empowering a greater growl to the riffs and sonic endeavour to further feed ears.

The strong start to the release continues with the equally impacting Give Up the Ghost. Another caustic wash of sound brings its heart into view, making way for a flowing melodic breeze around charged vocals. It brings essences of Tool and in some ways Karnivool to the mix, though they are mere whispers of spice within the expansive roar and intensive almost portentous air of the track. Though it fails to match the heights of its predecessor, the song adds further colour and variation to the songwriting and potent sound of the band, a new avenue to their growing scenery of invention and skilled designs within the release.

The following Silenced prowls around ears with a sinister yet seductive lure, its keen gait a spark to the brooding vocal and lyrical wrap which draws greater hunger towards the fluidly shifting ground of sound. It is possible to suggest favours of styles within Deathwhite songs as here, but impossible to pin it down into a description which truly represents the creative emprise the band offers. It is a refreshing and intrigue fuelled potency which adds to the promise and already sturdy stature of their sound, as evidenced again in the next up Feeding the Illusion. Erupting with a sturdy rhythmic weight and flame encrusted sonic heat the track is soon enveloping the vocal croon with a blistering torrent of incendiary melodies and driving riffs, all caustic to the touch and rigorously gripping. As the previous song, it suddenly slips into unpredictable asides, progressive and post metal additives colouring the adventure as one terrain seamlessly turns into another. The track from its strong initial engagement persistently grows in the passions, becoming one of the lingering exploits of the release.

Closing with the rugged and slightly corrosive A Burden to Carry, another heavily enticing and thrilling track which needs a better productive to thrive in; Ethereal is an immense base camp for Deathwhite as they start a certain ascent. As mentioned the release has its issues, the similarity of some passages of riffs between songs defusing their individual potency at times another, but like any other ‘niggle’ it will evolve and work itself out in time. This is a band with the armoury and invention to make waves; we wait with interest whilst basking in their impressive debut.

The self-released Ethereal is available now @ http://deathwhite.bandcamp.com/

8.5/10

RingMaster 01/07/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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