Contemplating Leaving Eden

le-3-11-16_RingMasterReview

It is quite simple. Leaving Eden is a band which demands attention with a sound and creative flair that persistently captures the imagination drawing an ever growing following simultaneously. Their ear catching and thought provoking music has help lead the band to sharing stages with hundreds of the biggest national bands in the world and tours across numerous countries. We managed to grab some time with Eric from the band to learn more about Leaving Eden and what makes them tick…

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band?

Hi, great chatting with you also.

Eve: Lead Vocals

Ryan: Manning Drums

Johhny V: Bass

I’m Eric Gynan: Guitarist, vocals, Keys.

Have you been involved in other bands before? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now?

Yes we’ve all been in various bands along the way and learning from the past always gives you a jump on the future.

What inspired the band name?

Leaving Eden came to be simply that this planet is like the Garden of Eden right, with all of its corruption; wouldn’t it be nice to take off and go somewhere else to visit? Lol.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it to offer and does that intent still drive the band or has it evolved over time?

Definitely we have evolved. I think you have to in order to change with the times so long as it’s better. It’s important though to maintain your individuality. For us we set out to be different. Quick story here, we went to this huge studio once where bands like Seven Dust, The Rolling Stones and Boston recorded. The person there brought out a white board in the conference room and drew a box. They said you are here, pointing outside the box and you need to be here, pointing inside the box. I immediately said wait, are you telling us we need to be in that box?  They said well yes I guess I am. I said thank you very much and got up and walked out. I get it, if you wanna ride a wave and be like everyone else on that moment of time, they can easily slip you into a genre. For us though it’s hard to just slip us in to any particular genre. We won the best Hardcore act in New England and I thought that was funny because they couldn’t find the appropriate Genre for us. We stay true no matter what the times may change to our roots, Rock Music.

Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved and has that been an organic movement or you guys deliberately heading in certain directions?

I think being a recording artist, endlessly recording and working with some incredible recording engineers like Johnny K (Disturbed, Pop Evil) you learn what it really takes. When they say they will go through your music with a fine tooth comb, they mean that literally that down to the 64th beat your music will be scrutinized for perfection. Ya know good bad or indifferent, when you listen to the radio, you may not like the band you’re listening to but aside from that, you will NEVER hear something that’s not polished. It’s gotta be perfect or you’ll never make it to the radio. With this on mind, you take this knowledge of being tight to the live performance and it makes all the difference in the world. This is why some bands may record a great album but when you see them live, it’s just not the same. We try and stay true to our recordings.  We also evolve in that area after the recording we may change it up live where we may think we’ve built upon that foundation.

art_RingMasterReviewPresumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

I think all of us are inspired by what we like as far as taste in other bands music. For us what greatly inspires us is that organic sound that manifests itself in a way that is kind of like connecting the dots. We feel that Leaving Eden learns from the past, encompasses the present and forges the future. Any band that has been in the gutters not in the limelight, they’re the ones whom always forged the future. This is why we named our last album Pinnacle…Because it’s at that pinnacle where trends will be forged.

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

Sure. For me I connect with the Universe in a way that opens my mind to listening. I use my fingers as kind of line antennas to pick up the frequencies, as strange as that sounds, if you listen, you can hear the music that lyrics, melodies and harmonies completely produced. Just gotta transfer that info to the recording. Then the rest of the band puts their stamp on it and presto, there’s a new song. I’ve even felt the influence of dead poets coming through. Sometimes I feel like I really can’t even take credit for the songs as they’ve come from somewhere else. It’s a deep meditative state of mind that brings these ideas into fruition.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

Great question… Our songs speak from experience, life’s experiences…Sometimes good but mostly bad lol. Bad in the way of getting screwed, for instance our song Tied and Bound comes from the frustration of the music industry; “We’ve been screwed overcharged underpaid and abused, exploited avoided and falsely accused, we’ve been cut down let down fucked around tied and bound, but nothing can take the music away”

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

Pinnacle released by Rock Avenue Records USA, was completely written before we got to the studio. We like to do pre-production first, be prepared so to speak, so that we aren’t wasting valuable time and money. Pinnacle is really an eclectic array of song themes and music. We tried to keep it again organic so you won’t hear all these extra vocal harmonies for instance that we could never do live. Yes there is harmony, but it can be done live.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the favourite aspect of the band?

That is where one should shine right?  I feel it is our live sound which is one of our trade marks. It’s so hard in the studio to capture that live performance primarily because it’s a one sided energy exchange. When you have a crowd, that’s where the sharing of the energy happens, therefore it really helps to put you on top of your game. You can’t see the band for instance when listening to an album, so that performance is so necessary.  Can the band reproduce that sound live? With Eve in front, she is clearly universal and really takes control of the room or festival, really just connecting with the crowd.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods?14195978_1274693589207580_3294288122701219788_o

Correct. We’ve been fortunate, lucky, graced, whatever you’d like to call it. Our motto has always been that we will play anywhere, anytime, any way we can so long as we can. This philosophy has led us to share the stage with some of the biggest bands in the world with;  Lacuna Coil, In This Moment, Black Sabbath (Heaven & Hell), Ronnie James Dio,  Rob Zombie, 5 Finger DeathPunch, Disturbed, Marylyn Manson, Alice Cooper, Lynyrd Skynyrd, ZZTop, Puddle of Mudd, Korn, Killswitch Engage, BuckCherry (Jefferson Starship, Big Brother and The Holding Company, Country Joe, 10 Years After, 40th Anniversary Woodstock) Shinedown, Dropkick Murphy’s,  Alice in Chains, Papa Roach, Bret Micheals, Halestorm, Theory of a Deadman, Avenged Sevenfold, Seether, Hell Yeah, Trapt, Dope, Soil, Fuel,  Queensryche, Saving Abel, Hinder, Damage Plan, 7Dust, Sebastian Bach, SoulFly, Days of the New, NonPoint, DrowningPool, The Misfits, The Butcher Babies, Collective Soul, MushroomHead, Mudvayne, Chevelle, Godsmack, Powerman 5000, 10Years, Taproot, Gin Blossoms, Michael Schenker (UFO, MSG & The Scorpions) Herman Rarebell (The Scorpions), Nicko McBrain (Iron Maiden), Kittie, One eyed doll, Uncle Kracker, Tremonti (Creed/Alterbridge) Lamb of god, Slayer, Stone Sour, Motorhead, Blackstone Cherry, HOOKERS & BLOW Featuring GUNS N’ ROSES, QUIET RIOT, W.A.S.P. Members, Steven Tyler, Ted Nugent, Lita Ford, LA Guns, Trixter, Warrant, Apocalyptic Review (featuring members of Godsmack) and many more..  This has led us to Winning The New England Music Awards & The Pulse Magazine Worcester MA Music Awards and Touring The USA, UK & Canada. If we didn’t get out there we would have never found these opportunities. There’s usually someone there that can help move you forward.

Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands?

Absolutely…In fact I believe bands who haven’t “made it” have more of an opportunity. Let’s take a band that has made it whether it was one song or many. As time passes, for whatever reason, they stopped making hits. It’s very rare for them to have another hit song or even get on the radio. It’s very strange but true. As a new artist you have more of a chance because again you’re at the pinnacle forging ahead.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date?

I find this very interesting. In a moment you can be heard all over the world. It’s absolutely amazing. Back in the day I feel bad for the artists before the internet that never had that chance. Shit, back then you couldn’t even stay connected with different states via phone. It was too expensive to make a phone call so you were quite limited as far as how far you could reach. Now, our music is flying through the airways, our unreleased song Out of the ashes says; digging deeper underground faster than the speed of sound

I can see the light of day, darkness fades away”. This just says as a band that’s not superstars, they are basically underground in the gutters spreading like swill in the harbor of slime lol. God some of the venues we’ve played have been the scum of the earth. Shit when we went to UK, there was a dirt floor. But in order to really appreciate where you may end up you’ve got to crawl through the slime in the gutters. If I for instance just started a band, had lots of money, related to someone big in the industry, getting signed immediately and becoming famous overnight, how then could I appreciate where I came from? When you come from the bottom of the barrel and make your way to the top, you never forget where you came from.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers

This was fun. Please excuse my unorthodox replies here and appreciate your time. Leaving Eden will be touring the USA, Canada and Europe. Hopefully South America as well, where our management/touring Co. Alpha Omega/Darkside Entertainment has offices in Europe, USA and South America we feel honored to be part of the family there. We hope to see all of you soon!! For all Leaving Eden Info go to http://www.leavingeden.com

And see us on Facebook Leaving Eden and Peace and Harmony to all!!  I say harmony because this planet, the universe, everything in it works in perfect harmony accept one species, Humans. WTF is that about right? Let’s make it happen.

https://www.facebook.com/bandleavingeden

Pete RingMaster

The Ringmaster Review 01/12/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Simpletone – Angels’ Share

the-simpletone-band-pic_RingMasterReview

There are some releases which just demand success. Whether they get it in the increasingly fickle attention of the modern music fan is never a given but Angels’ Share, the new album from British rockers The Simpletone, does all the right things to make that commanding statement.

There is little we can share about the 2010 formed band other than its line-up is made up of John Davison, Craig Seymour, Glenn Eastoe, and Tom Cahill, it hails from St Neots in Cambridgshire, and has previously released the albums, Rampenny in 2012 and Dark Matter two years later, both seemingly well-received propositions. A UK tour with New Model Army in 2014 has been one of many live highlights for the band built on their stirring fusion of heavy and melodic rock with grunge, stoner and numerous other essences. It is a mix of flavours making for a striking proposition and imaginative proposal in Angels’ Share and songs which just roar with anthemic majesty and fiery enterprise.

The first of the ten cuts gripping ears and an early appetite for the band’s invigorating rock ‘n’ roll is Outta Control. Instantly a spicy groove winds around ears, leaning in closer as tenacious rhythms and riffs join its opening bait. Effect coated vocals equally lures keen ears as the song swaggers along with steady but rapacious grooves and a suggestive melody. The restraint stopping the track from exploding as it hints it might throughout is an inspired move, the song teasing and almost taunting along its enterprise shaped body. The heavier throb of bass and flames of harmonies only add to the lure of the song with guitar craft similarly as magnetic.

The following Love Street (Modern Mystery) keeps the rich enticement going with its punk folk lined stroll, simple but potent riffs colluding with swinging beats as vocals paint a suggestive picture. Its catchiness is a swift persuasion rapidly backed by the boisterous antics of the guitars as the track carries on the great variety already showing in the band’s sound, diversity more than confirmed by their mighty new single Storm Chaser. At over eleven minutes it is an epic persuasion which serenades the senses with melodic and harmonic caresses initially before building a bolder energy amidst an addictive rhythmic prowess. Weaving strands of space and progressive rock among other textures into its ever evolving adventure, the song is a kaleidoscope of melody heavy rock drawing on an array of decades while creating its own fresh, individual, and ever changing landscape of imagination. Like a mix of Skyscraper (the nineties UK band), Life of Agony, and Voyager, the track barely feels like its length and relentlessly has the listener compelled.

angels-share-cover_RingMasterReviewThe fact that next up Black Box still manages to eclipse it slightly shows the quality of its own exceptional design. A spirit stoking beast from its first touch, the song canters with muscular tenacity and fiery invention bred to virulent proportions as its mix of hard and heavy rock consumes ears and imagination. The track is exceptional, as punk in many ways as it is feisty rock ‘n’ roll with a drama of character and craft that demands attention and involvement.

Fire in the Sky steps up next with a growl in its basslines and a contagious swing in its rhythms, guitars and vocals dancing within their addictive tempting as soulful blues lined grooves bring an incendiary heat to the proposal. Like a seventies inspired union of Therapy? and Reuben, to try and offer a comparison, the song forcibly hits the spot before making way for the slower stoner-esque prowl of Nehemiah, an incitement pulling sludgy textures into its increasingly exotic and suggestive theatre. It is seriously compelling stuff, another song blossoming through an array of twists and flavours as it grows in ears.

The melodic charm of Day by Day is a similarly riveting proposition, the graceful yet sinewy instrumental finding a place between XTC and Tool as it seduces the imagination, setting it up for electrified air and nature of As Above so Below. Courting ears with a rapaciously formidable core in its raw riffs and bold rhythmic, the track wraps it in a melodic spiciness and mellower harmonic seducing which echoes elements of bands like Bush, Alice In Chains, and Sick Puppies yet sounds little like any.

If we tell you that Easy Come lacks the same galvanic sparks of its predecessors do not mistake it for a weak link within Angels’ Share; the song a highly persuasive slice of rock ‘n’ roll with guitar craft which shines like a beacon as the bass uncages a funk inspired personality. The fact the track is outshone by others is down to their might, a strength revelled in again by album closer Hunters. Whether by coincidence or design, there is a Horslips feel to the song certainly early on, and of fellow Brits KingBathmat but as across the album, things are soon woven into an addiction of sound and creative hooks roaring The Simpletone.

It is a glorious end to one treat of a release which deserves all the praise and attention it should and surely will get. Angels’ Share is another rousing encounter to add to our lustful favourites of 2016 list and no keener a recommendation we can offer.

Angels’ Share is out now across most online stores and on iTunes @ https://itunes.apple.com/album/id1169473074?ls=1&app=itunes

http://www.thesimpletone.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thesimpletoneband/

Pete RingMaster 16/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

King Hiss – Mastosaurus

Pic:  christophe brysse

Pic: christophe brysse

Severely hooked by their debut release, the epic 2013 Snakeskin EP and fully wrapped up in the creative confines of debut album Sadlands the following year, it is fair to say that anticipation for the second full-length from King Hiss was as eager as for anything else offered this year. Mastosaurus does not disappoint either, quickly confirming existing thoughts that this is a band not only going places but on the point of major recognition while revealing a new creative plateau to their rousing songwriting and sound.

Formed in 2011, with a line-up seeing guitarist Joost Noyelle, vocalist Jan Coudron, and the rhythmic might of bassist Dominiek ‘Visioene’ Hoet and drummer Jason Bernard linking up, Belgium hailing King Hiss quickly began making a strong impression with their striking mix of rapacious riffs and murderous rhythms. As shown by the previously mentioned releases, it was a proposal helping the band earn a powerful reputation and acclaiming attention, for their live presence and sound and records. Mastosaurus is bound for greater success and spotlights as King Hiss reveal a new imagination and craft in songwriting and its rousing results. A concept album portraying the epic adventures of a doomed antihero, it storms ears from its first breath with songs which are as fearsomely meaty as they are imaginatively infectious and beguiling. Throughout grooves entangle the body and infiltrate the psyche as rhythms and riffs devour; fiery melodic interplay a lava-esque hue to the anthemic roar on offer track after track.

The album opens up with Homeland, the creaking wood of a ship luring prowling riffs which in turn align to a sonic fuzziness around a heavy portentous bassline. It is an intriguing start, a muggy opening coming further alight as Coudron’s impressive delivery enters the quickly set affair. Heated grooves bring an Alice In Chains like essence to the dark tempest brewing within ears, a thick smog of emotion and intensity as catchy as it is threatening. Eventually it ignites in a volcanic assault that simply blisters and captivates before making way for the even more impressive attack of Tourniquet. Straight away intoxicating wiry grooves are gripping and seducing the imagination, their exploits matched by the great harmonies and growling bassline surrounding Coudron’s ever compelling presence. There is no escaping another AIC/Queens Of The Stone Age flavouring in a track which is almost bestial as it makes its infectious and formidable King Hiss distinct presence.

kinghiss_mastosaurus_artwork_RingMasterReviewThe outstanding Black Sea, Slow Death comes next, part shanty part stoner infused rock ‘n’ roll, it takes the contagious elements of its predecessors turning them virulent around a vocally driven, melodically suggestive drama. There is something familiar to the song, something which often occurs across Mastosaurus, and is soon realised as being the inventive juice of the band which previously made their earlier encounters stand out, just in a more enterprisingly imposing and striking form now.

The rhythmic thunder of Bernard brings We Live in Shadows to life and to glory next, his swinging tenacity matched in temptation by the sonic flames of Noyelle as Coudron roars with evocative expression while the album’s title track similarly sees the drummer unleash the most anthemic prowess as danger and tempestuous suggestion surrounds him. The track is soon a blaze of vocal and sonic fire as a stormy barrage of riffs and those rousing beats descend; the song just as venomous in its calmer trespasses through eager ears. Mastosaurus is pure creative drama which even if it does not have the body throwing itself around has the imagination and passions twisted around its little finger.

The initial acoustic coaxing of Stuck in a Hole leads into another swarm of melodic incitement, they in turn slipping into gentle seduction before their captivating kindling erupts into an incendiary roar; proceeding to smoulder and ignite again and again across the mighty track. The song is further confirmation of the new diversity and invention in the textures and ideation making up the album’s songs, that essence just as ripe within successor Egomaniac; two and a half minutes of ferocious breath-taking sinew driven rock ‘n’ roll with its own style of voracious contagiousness.

Both Renegade with its rich bluesy atmosphere and ridiculously persuasive chorus and the antagonistic nature of Killer Hand further ignite hungry ears and an already greedy appetite for Mastosaurus, the second of the two especially momentous in the soundscape of the perpetually riveting and galvanic release. As all tracks, each invites and receives bold participation before Requiem for the Lost brings the mighty encounter to a startling close. With a grouchy resonance to keys and an emotionally raw melodic touch which at times with no word of a lie reminds of Wings, the instrumental is a melodramatic and melancholic epilogue to the tale and triumph before it.

Mastosaurus is exceptional and increasingly so with every listen as it reveals fresh textures and layers to its turbulent, often rabid, and constantly explosive body. King Hiss is ready to challenge to the frontline of European metal/rock with an album many bands there will only wish they had in their arsenal.

Mastosaurus is out now digitally @ https://kinghiss.bandcamp.com/album/mastosaurus and physically @ http://bit.ly/1PhHbS1

http://www.king-hiss.com   http://www.facebook.com/kinghissband    http://www.twitter.com/kinghissband

 Pete RingMaster 08/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Growls and grooves: talking with The Devil In California

The Devil In California_RingMasterReview

“Hailing from the broad, cracked streets of West Oakland, California,” The Devil In California is a band uncaging rock ‘n’ roll which rumbles with attitude and adventurous enterprise. Since forming they have swiftly forged their own identity with a rousing hard/heavy rock sound which devours as it masterfully involves the senses and imagination. Currently working on their second album, we grabbed the opportunity to talk with the heavy rockers to explore The Devil In California past, present, and ahead.

Hi and many thanks for sharing your time to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started and what brought you all together?

Tony Malson – We are The Devil In California; formed in 2013. Our drummer Eddie had an ad out that attracted Jamie (guitar), who brought in Matt (bass) to jam and see what was up. Eddie gave me a call and asked if I wanted to check out the project. I loved the tunes and The Devil was born. Snake was added to the project after mixing our first tunes. The line-up was then complete. We all share a passion for heavy hitting hard rock with influences galore.

Have you been/are involved in other bands before?

Tony – I moved to the bay area in 94 and have been singing in Bay Area bands ever since. Bands like AngryInch, Fiksate, The Servants, Mavalour and played drums/sang in Insecto and Monte Casino to name a few; all an artistic pathway leading to The Devil In California.

Jamie Cronander – Most of us have played in quite a few bands. Some you’ve probably heard of. Some of us have side bands. Some rock bands, metal bands, industrial bands, tribute bands, even trumpet in a brass band. We prefer that the Devil be thought of in its own light.

Has past experiences had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

Tony – Every musical experience I’ve had in other acts has contributed to how I approach writing/singing in The Devil. And I’m still exploring different avenues and genres to broaden my musical horizons; so much to learn.

Jamie – TDIC is its own inspiration thing. We draw influence from a lot of things, and most importantly from each other. You’d probably find that all of our other music, be it present or past, does not sound like the Devil.

What inspired the band name?

Eddie Colmenares – I came up with it when doing the initial planning.

Tony – Eddie came up with the name and I liked it right away; perfect for this band.

DIC_RingMasterReviewWas there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Eddie – There was. I really wanted to put together a heavy, hard rock band that had that southern, slide guitar vibe to it.

Jamie – Matt and I were working on a project that kept getting put on hold by the other members. We wanted to do something that was more heavy, old school, and southern influenced. Alice In Chains, Corrosion Of Conformity, Skynyrd, Pantera, Clutch, STP, Allmans, etc. We had plenty of time, so we started a couple ideas and were directed to Eddie’s ad almost immediately.

Tony – I think the idea of a swampy, heavy, melodic, hard rocking 5 piece was the idea from the beginning. I came in after Jamie, Eddie and Matt had jammed a bit so it changed a bit from there but we all have a similar vision.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

Eddie – It’s a mix. First, we aren’t that old of a band, so nothing is ‘too much of the same’ yet. And we are moving up pretty fast – it’s a lot coming at us at once, which in turn drives us more.

Tony – I’ve always been very musically driven personally. My passion to play music and get that music out to the world hasn’t really swayed in the last twenty plus years. I’ve always got the same vibe from the band in that regard. But you can’t grow without change and we tend to evolve in a very natural upward spiral. Has our music changed? Yes. Does it still encapsulate TDIC? Absolutely!

Since those first days, how would you say your sound has equally evolved?

Jamie – Definitely an evolution, but a young one; we have some prettier stuff coming, and some harder stuff coming. We’ve only got the one record out. But if you dig it, fear not. The next record will be just as hard hitting and sing-alongy, but will not be a repeat of the first.

Tony – I’ve always enjoyed the band “process” of learning to play with new musicians and finding that absolute sweet spot where everyone’s talents, technical abilities, and musical emotions come together as one. This process takes years and is a constant evolution. And in my opinion it’s really coming together with The Devil.

Has it been more of an organic movement of sound or more the band deliberately wanting to try new things?

Jamie – A lot of it is that Snake joined later in the process of the first record. He still had a heavy hand in the songs on the record, but the structure was mostly in place. Snake and I work VERY well together, so now that we’re able to do the whole process of guitars together, I think the band is really blooming into something better as we become one.

Tony – Definitely more of an organic flow towards our sound and what feels good.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

Tony – Everything from Prince to Pantera inspires me. I’m a huge fan of the Seattle sound that was so instrumental in the 90’s. Alice in Chains have always struck a deep chord with me; Soundgarden as well for that matter. Chris and Layne were and are my top vocal heroes.

Jamie – Alice In Chains is a big common thing for all of us. Their ability to be as pretty and acoustic as they get or ugly and heavy as they get, is intense and the vocal harmonies…so important. For me personally; Corrosion Of Conformity, Pantera, Stevie Ray, Nirvana, Sonic Youth, STP, Allman Bros., CCR. They’ve all changed the way I think about the guitar.

Is there a process to the songwriting which generally guides the writing of songs?TDIC_RingMasterReview

Tony – In this band the riffs usually come first. We formulate the tune based on that then I begin to add lyrics and melodies. I prefer to wait until I hear a song and digest the riff before I start to head in a lyrical direction. You never know where inspiration will come from so you can’t fall in love with a preconceived idea.

Jamie – Usually it stems from me and Snake bringing in riffs we’re having fun with. We’ll hash them out at home a bit, record the ideas, send it to the guys on line, and then bang on it all together in the studio.

How about the lyrical side of your songs, where do you, more often than not, draw inspirations from?

Tony – My lyrics are largely derived from the life experiences of myself and those that surround me. Inspiration can take many forms. I’m always open to a new vibe or sound or riff. It’s kept me coming back for years on end. I love writing and recording new material.

Can you give us some background to your current release, Longer Ride Down?

Eddie – We only have the debut release out, so really, the background is “we formed, and wrote a record in a year”. We go back into the studio this winter for the follow-up.

Tony – It’s a hands down, kick ass, hard rockin’, heavy grooved, melodic, ear bender. If you dig heavy riffs with harmony and soul all wrapped up in emotion then you’re in!

Can you give us some insight to the themes and premise behind it and its songs.

Tony – I’ve always gravitated towards the darker side of musical tastes. The beauty in expressing that space is undeniable. It can be very moving and haunting at the same time. That being said, positivity needs to reign supreme in your approach to life as well as music. You usually have to traverse the darkness to see the light.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

Eddie – Oh lord, hahaha… they are final final final, and then we still change things. All songs are prepped long before we are in the studio.

Tony – We always do a pre-production round of recording before we do the final tracking. 99% of our changes to our songs happen in prepro. Then we are super close to the final product when doing the final version in the studio.

Jamie – We usually end up pre-producing songs in full three times at least. The first takes are to nail tempos, and see if we feel like they need anything, like additional breaks, leads, backups, etc. As for the finals, we record them just guitar, bass, and vox, lay drums over them, then redo the instruments over the drums.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the favourite aspect of the band?

Tony – We want you to walk away from our live show saying, “That was one of the best bands I’ve ever seen”. So our approach is filled with intensity and vigor. We all have a professional approach to our live show but realize that without a little danger and spontaneity it’s hard to take it to the next level.

TDIC_RingMasterReviewIt is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it?

Tony – We have made a good splash in the Bay Area. It’s not an easy place to play music as the people and crowds are so diverse. This diversity is what we love but it also lends to many different kinds of music being played out live. There is no “one scene” in the bay so you have to fight a little harder for your rock and roll piece of the pie; which only makes you a better act in the end.

Eddie – The San Francisco / Bay Area is a fickle place. If you want to do well locally, you better be really good out of the gate, and then keep it coming. Fortunately we have some great, loyal fans. We’re at that stage where when we are playing and I look out at the audience, I don’t even know 70% of the people. That’s awesome.

Are there still the opportunities to make a mark there if the drive is there for new bands?

Tony – Absolutely! There are always opportunities to take advantage of. No excuses. Get out there and attack the scene. Write good tunes, play a great live show, and leave it all on the stage. You will see results.

Eddie – Yes, but it’s a whole new paradigm now. Be ready to work your ass off if you want to do anything other than play your local bar. Nobody is going to come along and hold your hand these days. No label is going to show up at your local show and whip a contract out of their suitcase to hand you. That is absolutely over – doubly so if you are not in an “urban” act, or are a rapper. We do pretty much everything in house, and it’s a just as much a job as it is a band.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date?

Tony – The music industry is an ever changing beast due to the internet and social media today. You have to get on board and ride that bitch to your benefit or it will leave you behind in an instant. There is always more to be done but we are benefiting from it for sure.

Eddie – I think social media was far bigger of a deal just a few years ago than it is now. The stream of having said that, at least 80% of our exposure is through some sort of social media interaction.

Jamie – The internet is basically the only way to discover music these days. If you’re not on FB, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and everything else, you’re not putting in the work. People do still buy physical CDs, but usually they’ve been watching your video before that.

Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

Tony – It’s a positive in the end. It has to be. You need to make it so and will it to be. Even a bad situation offers lessons towards a positive outcome. Ask questions. Investigate all the solutions. If you’re not failing in some arena then you’re not trying hard enough.

Once again guys, big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Tony – Thank you! And yes, our new album is in the works and due out this winter. We have some more touring this summer going down as well. Keep an eye out for some new videos and some surprises from The Devil. Let’s Rock!

Eddie – Thanks! And please stay tuned – more is coming!

All – Please follow us on your favorite social media site!

https://www.facebook.com/thedevilincalifornia   https://twitter.com/eldiabloencali

https://www.instagram.com/thedevilincalifornia   https://www.youtube.com/thedevilincalifornia

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 10/06/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Valley Of The Sun – Volume Rock

VOTS_RingMasterReview:

If a title ever reflected its contents then it is Volume Rock, the new album from Cincinnati stompers Valley Of The Sun. The release is a mighty roar of rousing rock ‘n’ roll which never takes a breath and demands to be played with the dial locked on maximum. In many ways it carries on where their acclaimed debut album Electric Talons Of The Thunderhawk left off but with even more resourcefully honed and fiery exploits on board to fire up ears and rich enjoyment.

With the two well-received EPs, Two Thousand Ten and The Sayings of the Seers in 2010 and 2011 respectively, under their belt, Valley Of The Sun really caught attention and a new wealth of eager appetites with Electric Talons Of The Thunderhawk in 2014. It took their inflamed mix of stoner, hard, and desert rock to new heights with just rewards in responses and acclaim. It is easy to feel though that all of its success was just the appetiser to bigger things and reactions around the uncaging of Volume Rock and its step up in sound, songwriting, and the band’s ability to get all rocking like a bone starved hound.

The album opens on the instantly masterful and rousing swagger of Eternal Forever, ears clipped by sticks on rims as a bluesy invitation swings away alongside. In another handful of seconds, the song hits a rampant stroll with its riff loaded chest out and rhythmic hips swinging. The vocals of guitarist Ryan Ferrier quickly impress as they light ears and song whilst his riffs find quick unity with the catchy grooves of Adam Flaig, the contagious start becoming a full on anthemic enticement driven by the potent jabs of drummer Aaron Boyer and the brooding bassline of Ringo Jones.

It is an exhilarating start backed within moments by the following Wants and Needs. Slightly less urgent but no less commandingly infectious, the track has a spicy Queens Of The Stone Age feel to its melodic and vocal persuasion though equally, and not for the last time across the album, there is also a grungy essence which hints at Alice In Chains. A blaze of spirit raising rock ‘n’ roll, its success is matched and eclipse by the thick and sultry charms of The Hunt. Badgering the senses and body from start to finish, the track is an inflamed shuffle with imposing rhythms and citric grooves bound in the outstanding tones of Ferrier, his presence backed just as potently by the band in voice and enterprise.

Volumerock_FrontCover_RingMasterReviewNext up Land of Fools has enjoyment and limbs in full involvement too; it’s more reserved but seriously addictive entrance, with rhythms and riffs insatiable bait, the lead into a virulent epidemic of lean keen hooks and beats which continue the track’s initial magnetic work as sonic flames cast by the guitar of Flaig and Ferrier’s harmonic throat flare. There is no escaping a Josh Homme and co feel again to the outstanding encounter, a flavour only adding to its triumph before making way for I Breathe the Earth and its delicious bass grumble. That leading lure brings ears into t smouldering sighs of fiery guitar and in turn concussive beats and beguiling harmonies, all colluding in another aural swelter with psych and blues rock imagination.

The heavier and thicker textures of Speaketh the Shaman steps forward next, Ferrier crooning with purpose and heart within the smokier fire of the song’s sizzling climate and sound. As in a few other tracks, bands like The Sword and Torche come to mind a little, though generally a fleeting essence within Valley Of The Sun’s own creative flame. Certainly the band skilfully employs familiar hues in their own sonic designs, but as different colours in something maybe not boldly unique but undoubtedly distinct in style and character.

If previous tracks were fires, Beneath the Veil is a volcano of grooves and melodic lava, enveloping and treating ears to a white hot invasion of infectious blues rock ‘n’ roll. It roars and stomps in its groove woven waltz, springing the listener into an exhaustive dance and revelry for which no escape is possible or wanted until its last note blisters on the ears.

A chance to grab a breath is allowed momentarily by Solstice before it too is a thumping hard rock scented canter with a punkish snarl pulling tired bodies back to their soon revitalised feet. Its departure lets Empty Visions bring the album to memorable close, the track a hot bed of sonic fuzz and melodic tinder setting fire to ears and spirit under the catchy guidance and temptation of the ever impressing vocals.

It is a fine end to a thrilling encounter which just leaves you wanting more and with real greed. If Valley Of The Sun impressed before, they will blow a great many more away with Volume Rock and its incendiary rock ‘n’ roll.

Volume Rock is released April 29th via Fuzzorama Records @ http://www.fuzzoramastore.com/en/ and https://fuzzoramarecords1.bandcamp.com/album/volume-rock

https://www.facebook.com/valleyofthesun    https://twitter.com/centaur_rodeo

Pete RingMaster 28/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com

 

Boss Keloid – Herb Your Enthusiasm

Boss Keloid_RingMasterReview

Big praise drenched words and claims have been shared in the build up to the release of the new album from British heavy rockers Boss Keloid, and we can quite eagerly say that Herb Your Enthusiasm more than lives up to every syllable of acclaim offered. The Wigan hailing quartet’s second album is simply superb, inescapably irresistible, and a ravenous incitement entangling the finest ravenous textures of sludge, doom, stoner, progressive rock and much more. For ten tracks it turns ears and imagination inside out with unpredictability and ferocious adventure that catches the breath as equally as the heavy predacious sounds and rabidly dark ideation terrorises the senses. The release is spellbindingly fascinating and destined to stalk the top places of end of year best album lists.

As in debut album The Calming Influence of Teeth of 2013, riffs carry a furious rabidity as rhythms probe and punish within Herb Your Enthusiasm. That alone provides a proposal demanding attention with the seduction of low-slung grooves only increasing the senses intimidating, imagination courting prowess at work. To this masterful palette of raw intensity and barbarous persuasion the band layers further temptations of melodic dissonance and glamour, progressive drama, and at times an avant-garde psychosis which just puts hex on album and listener. The result is a release which blows its impressive predecessor out of the water and announces Boss Keloid as a big creative predator in a large devouring pond.

Recorded and mixed by Chris Fielding at Skyhammer Studios and mastered by James Plotkin, Herb Your Enthusiasm opens up with Lung Mountain, a track swiftly providing the template for the heart of the album. Riffs badger and pounce on ears as the hefty swings of drummer Ste Arands resonate on the senses. It takes little time though for band and album to slip in something more sultrily comfortable as guitarist Paul Swarbrick shares flirtatious melodies cross a calmer landscape where the already rousing roar of vocalist Alex Hurst mellows into a more enticing growl. With Jon Davis of Conan guest and adding to the vocal web, the bass of Adam Swarbrick is all the while a predator, stalking the song and imagination with its swaying animus for a perfect temper to the kinder climate and the spark for more ravenous intent elsewhere. As shown time and time again, there is so much going on in songs only physically embracing them can reveal all with every listen perpetually revealing a new twist or texture to get hooked on.

Boss Keloid_HYE_Front_Artwork_RingMasterReviewThe progressive ingenuity in the latter stages of the song only adds to a theatre of sound and craft which continues in the imagination fuelled emprise of Haarlem Struggle. An exotic acoustic opening is soon a tempestuous wall of lumbering confrontation, though that early spicing still flavours the bracing proposal of primal intensity aflame with senses enveloping harmonies. Strains of death and groove metal among other bold spices are equally glimpsed in the brewing maelstrom, teasing and thrilling ears though not as much as the subsequent spiral into experimental adventure towards the track’s rear where Boss Keloid conjure an alchemy best described as a bedlam of Faith No More, Trepalium, 6:33, and Destrage.

Giving a final crushing of ears as it leaves, the excellent track makes way for the equally compelling Escapegoat where grunge/stoner toxicity quickly grips and excites whilst vocals and rhythms collude with more tenebrific riffs within an atmospheric trespass. There is no let-up of thick pressure and corrosive intensity across the song, its invigorating voracious intent single minded as its heads into the doom spawned jaws of Cone. Amongst resonating bass bait and dark fibrous grooves, Alex Hurst flirts with a Mike Patton like devilry for his early presence though he and song need little prompting to raise their antagonistic side as heavy rock and thunderous rhythms align for an invasive tsunami of sound and intent. For every assault offered there comes a flirtatious groove or virulent infectiousness that has the body and passions swinging, here it revealing a great Alice In Chains like hue to its tempting.

Axis of Green keeps the release and enjoyment on the same striking plateau, the rhythmic agility of Ste Arands and Adam Swarbrick catching ears in swift time as Paul Swarbrick’s sonic strands and venomous grooves weave in and out. Increasingly more eventful as it progresses, ending with a progressively tenacious and again expectations destroying climax, the song is followed by Highatus, a brief and fiery slice of instrumental sludge suggestiveness which is far more straight forward than the tracks around it but similarly enjoyable before being seriously outshone by Lung Valley. With psych rock keys and the increasingly impressing vocal variety and quality of Alex Hurst instantly sparking further lustful reactions, the track creates a tapestry of grouchily invasive textures and inviting grooves. Every element is as welcoming as they are imposing, and ultimately all addictively persuasive.

The fierce blaze and climactic toning of Elegant Odyssey enslaves next, every groove and slither of ingenuity infesting the psyche as the senses are bruised and body physically nagged by the track’s weight and aggressively shared intent. With its mercurial and spellbinding character, the track is simply outstanding, a ravenous triumph to bear and lustfully embrace, much as the final pairing of songs on the album. Chabal steps forward first, Davis again featuring as another array of textures and rock ‘n’ roll strains entangle and unite as the band forcibly push their songwriting and imagination whilst similarly imposing on the listener, trapping them in a web of contagious exploits and instinctively quarrelsome incitement.

Hot Priest closes up Herb Your Enthusiasm and is as exceptional as its two predecessors. Immediately it flirts with ears in an avant-garde rock shuffle with keys and rhythms sharing off-kilter imagination and enterprise too. Of course in no time, Boss Keloid has uncaged the pugnacious side of their invention with combative riffs and beats led by snarling vocals descending on the senses. From there the two contrasting sides continue to switch within and share the track’s glorious presence.

We have only hinted at the heart, body, and character of Herb Your Enthusiasm such its rich depths and imagination. Your job is to explore it, embrace, it, and be mercilessly buffeted and seduced by something surely few will manage to better this year.

Herb Your Enthusiasm is released April 8th via Black Bow Records and @ https://bosskeloid.bandcamp.com/album/herb-your-enthusiasm

https://www.facebook.com/bosskeloidband

Pete RingMaster 07/o4/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/

American Head Charge – Tango Umbrella

AHC_RingMasterReview

Like many others we are sure, there was a surge of excited anticipation when the new American Head Charge album was announced. It was the first since 2005 full-length The Feeding and the band disbanding two years later. Their return after six years subsequently brought the excellent Shoot EP, a release bristling with hints of a new bigger and even bolder adventure to the AHC sound. Now those clues are realised and reinforced with Tango Umbrella; a maelstrom of prime AHC moments, new imaginative adventures, and exploits seemingly inspired by some of their companions in the nu-metal/melodic metal scene first time around. The result is a riveting and galvanic tempest of sound and imagination which for the main hits the spot dead centre.

From the first breath of their first album for Napalm Records, AHC go straight for the senses and imagination with opener Let All The World Believe. Its entrance is calm and coaxing, electronic pulses and beats gathering within an increasingly sinister ambience before the doors burst open and predatory riffs and rhythms eagerly crowd and trespass ears. It is a forcibly enticing start only blossoming again as the band unleashes inventive industrial metal rabidity. The keys of Justin Fowler sizzle and incite with devilish enterprise whilst the intrusive beats of Chris Emery descend with uncompromising intent. All the while Cameron Heacock vocally prowls like an apocalyptic ringmaster; his expression and words scathing and confrontational and just as alluring as the thick mesh of sound around him. With touches of Fear Factory and Static X to it, the track is a glorious start; an anthemic death dance bursting with the dramatic sonic devilment of guitarists Karma Cheema and Ted Hallows.

Drowning Under Everything quickly follows with another industrial sculpted invitation, its initial clang soon immersed in a robust tide of riffs and grooves. The growling bass of Chad Hanks quickly steals a chunk of the attention, backed by the matching potent bait of guitars and vocal laced with a Manson-esque hue soon evolving into a richer melodic flame bred with the familiar AHC dexterity and invention. It too is a swiftly shifting and changing passage within the tantalising track, a moment soon becoming entangled with all the other textures in a muggy creative maze. Inescapably the track ignites ears and again an already awoken appetite before the more thunderous assault of Perfectionist flares up to place its virulent grip on attention too. Atmospherically suggestive and vocally provocative, the song merges grunge and nu-metal traits and flavours to infectious effect as essences of Korn, Mudvayne, and Alice In Chains spice its enthralling proposal. Epitomising the whole album though, for all spices and influences openly shown, the track is unmistakably American Head Charge through and through.

art_RingMasterReviewThe latter of those three references nudges thoughts again as the thick mesmeric and emotive embrace of Sacred takes over, the track crawling seductively over the senses as vocals, guitars, and keys charm and tantalise ears. With the bass grumbling and beats swinging in tandem, the track beguiles from its first second, before being followed and overshadowed by the quite irresistible I Will Have My Day, a fiercely rousing and relentless White Zombie incitement with again great AIC sounding harmonies and melodic caresses.

The emotion loaded A King Among Men comes next; the ballad a requiem of piano, voice, and harmonies likely inspired by the loss of previous band guitarist Bryan Ottoson in 2005 and more recently friends like Wayne Static but equally a sentiment for anyone losing someone. It is a potent piece leaving a lingering touch much like, but in whole different way, Suffer Elegantly. The call of the wild springs a charging, invasive surge of riffs and grooves driven by hellacious rhythms. There is no escaping a Ministry incited dynamic to the track or its savagely tenacious energy and sound but again AHC twist it into their own ravenous ideation and aggressive imagination. Many major favourites emerge from within Tango Umbrella, this right there on the frontline.

The twisting rapacious tone and grooves of Antidote enslaves ears and thoughts next, its flirtatious melodies and off-kilter slithers of sound rich pickings for the imagination whilst the Down like hostility which seeps from the track’s uncaging of raw intensity has the spirit as inflamed as the rest of the song has ears gripped. Increasingly more impressive and addictive with every listen, the song entices and snarls like a beast in heat much as the Trent Reznor like Prolific Catastrophe which sidles in with a devilish glint in its creative eye and a rousing fire in its sonic belly.

Completing the album is firstly the musically and lyrically antagonistic Down And Depraved, a grouchy and mercurial blaze of voice and sound, and finally the atmospherically cast When The Time Is Never Right. It is another which needed time to convince as heartily as previous tracks within Tango Umbrella but persistently has satisfaction and involvement fully engaged whilst bringing the album to a magnetic end.

It is fair to say that Tango Umbrella lives up to the promise of the band’s last EP and more. It is like a kaleidoscope of their highlights to date and inspirations picked up along the way, in turn almost like trip through the listener’s own nu/industrial metal inspired soundtrack but most of all, the album is one thoroughly thrilling, inventively fresh and varied slab of American Head Charge imagination re-establishing the sextet as one of our prize assets.

Tango Umbrella is released via Napalm Records on March 25th through most online stores.

http://www.headcharge.com/    https://www.facebook.com/AmericanHeadCharge   https://twitter.com/AHC_Official

Remaining dates on the AHC/Mushroomhead UK tour

26.03.16 UK – Bristol / The Marble Factory

27.03.16 UK – Plymouth / The Hub

29.03.16 UK – Cardiff / The Globe

30.03.16 UK – London / Electric Ballroom

31.03.16 UK – Brighton / Concorde 2

01.04.16 UK – Southampton / Engine Rooms

02.04.16 UK – Norwich / Waterfront

03.04.16 UK – Reading / Sub89

Pete RingMaster 24/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/