Orestea – Elements

Already embracing a fair wash of attention and acclaim through previous EP This is An Overture and a spirit sparking live presence, UK outfit Orestea have pushed their creative bar on again with their striking new album Elements.  Bringing rich essences of melodic rock and alternative metal together in collusion with what can only be described as pop virility, the Guildford hailing band weave a seriously infectious proposition which boils time and time again within an album which has body and imagination bouncing.

Cored around the energy and craft of guitarist Lloyd Wilson, bassist Mike Quinn, and the vocal magnetism of Lisa Avon, a line-up completed by guitarist Johno Madgwick since recording the album, Orestea irrepressibly build on a potent reputation earned through songs and performances alongside the likes of alongside Ashestoangels, Forever Never, ESO, and Wednesday 13 as well as plaudit drawing sets at festivals such as Bloodstock, Download and Guildfest, in swift time upon Elements. As soon as opener Welcome to Surviville comes forth, there is a sense of fresh adventure and assured maturity in songwriting and sound at work. Drama accompanies the approaching sound just as harmony soaks the vocal invitation of Avon whilst imagination instantly infests every twist and turn as the song settles into its rock pop temptation. Driven by the rhythmic web cast by drummer Jack Slade across the release, the song simultaneously rumbles upon and serenades the senses, that adventurousness continuing to fuel guitars, keys, and the heart of an excellent opener setting the creative template and heart of things to come.

The following Here’s The Plan immediately saunters in with a vibrant air, melodies and metallic riffs uniting around Avon’s increasingly potent tones. Her voice is an instinctive roar, as much a seductive flame as it is a steely incitement and as virulent as the sounds around her. Though maybe not quite finding the boldness of its predecessor, the track keeps attention and pleasure burning bright before the album’s title track sizzles on ears. The dancing enterprise of the guitars brings its own raw edge to match the biting and dark temptations of drums and bass, the latter’s grumble especially magnetic in the heated contagious blaze of the song.

References to the likes of Paramore and Don Broco seem to crop up more often than not and it is easy to hear why but as fourth track Ghost of Letting Go steps forward, Orestea only establish their own individual character upon thought and sound. The song is a fiery ballad built on the metallic strains of Quinn’s bass; a song with irritability in its roar and harmonic grace in its calm which only captivates before Alive or Just Existing shows the band is just as adept at kicking up a storm though that attack is unsurprisingly bound in an infectiousness which has the body bouncing and energies rising. It is pure pop rock ‘n’ metal mastery and another pinnacle upon the already praise stamped proposition.

Through the reflective beauty of Getaway, Avon sheer radiance within its warm atmospheric contemplation, and the rowdier stroll of Eggshells, ears are treated to further invention and an enjoyably inescapable persuasion which The Wreckage continues as it burns in ears with emotion and sonic flames like a drama woven sunset. All three leave pleasure and thoughts enamoured before Got Your Back echoes their persuasions with its own enticement if one not quite matching their heights of those but only due to personal preference.

The album is completed by the emotive sigh of Burning Bridges, Avon and music a release of emotive intensity which caps a fine album with a melodic passion hard to not get wrapped up in. It is a fine conclusion to a release which confirms Orestea as one stirring proposition with still the potential of even greater adventures ahead. If being over fussy, there are times within Elements when the band might have pursued its imagination and invention with even braver boldness but it is just a greedy quibble upon something which excites from beginning to end.

Elements is out now @ http://shop.orestea.com/product/elements-album

https://www.facebook.com/oresteaband/    https://twitter.com/orestea

Pete RingMaster 26/09/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

NoSelf – Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1

Proving that nu metal is still a valid presence and temptation, Central Florida outfit NoSelf have just released their new seven track mini-album to excite ears and arouse the spirit. Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 unites familiar traits with the band’s imagination stoking individuality, sparking body and an already bred appetite for the earlier heyday of nu metal along the way. It is claimed there is a new revival of the genre; a most welcome second coming if band and album is evidence of its new adventure.

Emerging in 2002, NoSelf draw on the inspiration of bands such as Deftones, Spineshank, Adema, Nothingface, and Korn for their sound, spicing making a potent ingredient in the band’s new Matt Johnson recorded offering. It is flavouring which has enriched previous encounters but makes more of a hue than ingredient of the immediately pleasing Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1.

The album opens with Casting Stones, instantly cradling ears in a melodic coaxing as keys entice. Their suggestive welcome swiftly draws the listener into a waiting raw roar of sound, the guitar of Justin Dabney a predacious tempest of riffs and grooves backed by the rapier swings of drummer Drew Miller. The snarling tones of vocalist Dylan Hart Kleinhans are enticingly tempered and supported by warmer vocals, the union a bridge between the savage and electronically enchanting aspects of the outstanding opener. As suggested earlier, the song brings recognisable aspects in its turbulence but equally a squall of fresh enterprise which has body and thoughts quickly locked in.

As great as it is, the starter is still eclipsed by next up Save Me; carnivorous riffs and the wonderfully gnarly tones of Joey Bivo’s bass chewing on the senses, their ferocious web sonic barbed wire. Similarly to the first, the track contrasts its ferocity with a harmonic radiance, vocals and melodies flirting with ears before falling into the onrushing scourge of aggression though still forcing their inviting calm to the surface. That Adema influence is an especially open and enticing colour in the storm, and across the release, adding to its drama as it tempers the corrosive heart of the excellent song.

Nudisease is just as appealing and intrusive as its predecessors though with a more tolerant nature, riffs and grooves to the fore from its first breath. The intensity of the first two is pulled back in the third though its fire is as pyre like but turned into a hook carting swagger which has the body bouncing. Slips into calmer passages are fluid and magnetic, the track revealing a bolder adventure than the previous two if less of their greed inducing savagery while successor Through Your Eyes also embraces mellower climes in its more mercurial atmosphere and proposition. The song though has a volcanic temperament and heart which fuels its melodic and aggressive sides, creating an unpredictable and rabid but ultimately restrained trespass which maybe teases more than fulfils but still leaves pleasure stuck in its previous high.

If there has been a more enticing start to a song this year than that of Outatime we have yet to hear it, the track beckoning with flirtatious sonic finger wagging before the funk hearted bass of Bivo adds its lure; swiftly followed by a rapacious tide of riffs. Just as tenacious vocals and rhythms soon jump in, their more predatory touch colluding with the atmospherically intriguing, funkily mischievous antics of the song and the similarly devious presence of Hart Kleinhans. Eventually its carnal rawness erupts in a contagion of an insatiable chorus before things ebb and flow in intensity with increasing infectiousness. The track steals best song honours in no time, cementing its claim with every listen.

The weakest moment on the encounter is Frisco but the fact it is one inescapably catchy and persuasive moment tells you how potent Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 is as a whole. The song has a definite pop spiced side not heard on the previous tracks; a kinder more deliberately infectious nature which has the feet trapping and vocal chords induced. There is something of Australian band Voyager to the song at times which only adds to its tempting and a growing growl that shows real teeth but lacks the weight and tenacity of its predecessors for personal tastes. In saying that there is no denying it commands full involvement and enjoyment before making way for the closing delights of Ctrl-Z. It too has an undisguised poppiness but latched to an imposing antipathy which hits the spot as much as its infectious escapades. The song is another which bears boldness in design and adventure to captivate ears and imagination but also a hearty tension of sound and emotion which grips eager participation.

Recently signing a worldwide distribution deal with Zombie Shark Records, the new record label from Noah “Shark” Robertson (Motograter, EX-The Browning), NoSelf have pushed themselves to the fore of this new wave of nu metal seeded goodness with Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1. There is more to their sound than just that field of flavouring, one we eagerly await hearing expand ahead.

Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 is out now and available @ http://www.zombieshark.net/  and  https://zombiesharkrecords.bandcamp.com/album/human-cyborg-relations-episode-1

https://www.facebook.com/NoSelf/

Pete RingMaster 22/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Baring souls: talking Exoaura

Fresh in presence and fresh in sound, US progressive/alternative metal duo Exoaura are beginning to create a stir. Drawing on an array flavours, it is a band with bold imagination and sounds. So with their debut release barely out of its wrapper, we took to exploring this exciting emerging outfit with great thanks to both Lindsey and Adam, delving into the band’s beginnings, musical instincts, that new release and much more…

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

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

We are Lindsey Church (vocals/piano/strings) and Adam Ingram (instrumentation/engineering). We’re a female fronted alternative-metal duo with a twist of soul, from Spokane WA, US.

Lindsey: We’ve been best friends for years and have been writing and performing music together since 2004. We have extremely different tastes in music. I like a lot of soul and R&B, while Adam listens to a lot more prog and rock, but we both have a common love for metal, so we decided to blend our styles and form Exoaura.

Have you been/are involved in other bands before? If so how have those experiences infused within Exoaura?

Lindsey: We were both in the nu-metal band Reflection. It had a wide spectrum of light and melodic, to heavy sounds that we both loved…and some progressive elements, so we brought a lot of that into Exoaura. Also writing and growing as musicians together for so many years, we’ve developed a great chemistry that, from what our fans tell us, can really be felt in what we write.

What inspired the band name?

Adam: We wanted our sounds and band name to represent a concept of being something bigger than the boundaries and limitations that people put on themselves…so, we came up with Exoaura, “exo” meaning outside and “aura” meaning one’s atmosphere.

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

Lindsey: Exoaura is a new project that we just formed summer of 2016, but the drive regardless of what band I’ve sung in, remains the same. It’s a need for raw self-expression and using that to connect on a deeper level with other people. It’s the freedom that you can only get from your art.

Where has your thoughts and personal direction in music evolved over time?

Lindsey: I think we should always be looking for ways to grow and evolve, so I’ve studied vocals for years. I take what I learn and apply it to my writing. When I increase my range, or learn different styles, it gives me the ability to get a more diverse sound. It’s like getting a new toy to play with and it’s always exciting lol.

Though you are still in your early days as Exoaura, how would you say your sound has evolved to date?

Adam: I’m a gear junkie. I love picking up and experimenting with new sounds, processes and effects. I’ve also been listening to a lot of progressive metal bands and have been incorporating more and more of these kinds of picking techniques in my guitar work.

Is there an organic flow to the movement and exploration of your sound or is it that you deliberately search out new things to try?

Adam: Our evolution has been organic. Whether it’s from finding new bands to listen to, or learning something different from training, our writing flows in new ways with each other from the inspiration we find.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of those 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?

Lindsey: Absolutely. TesseracT has been a huge influence. Dan Tompkins is an incredible vocalist and I’ve always been blown away by his impeccable technique and range. I had a chance to study with him and he helped me to realize the dynamics of my voice and how to unleash it. So, he’s had a huge impact on how I write.

Is there a particular process to your songwriting?

Adam: Usually, yeah. I’ll boot up one of my writing templates in Cubase, set a tempo then create a groove as a foundation for the mood and energy of the track. After I’ve recorded my instruments I’ll send Lindsey a draft mix where she adds her creative process with orchestral and vocal melodies. Once all the magic is captured I spend quite a bit of time getting a solid mix together then migrate to mastering, getting it spit polished for release.

Where do you generally draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs from?

Lindsey: I’m fascinated by the polarity of love and hate in the world and the interconnectivity between all living things that people feel, but tend to ignore. So, a lot of my lyrics are about that seemingly eternal struggle to break free of that and see things for what they truly are.

Could you give us some background to your latest release?

Our debut self-titled EP will be released on June 30th, 2017. It’s a combination of thought provoking lyrics, melodic grooves, ethereal orchestration and passionate soul.

How about the themes and premise behind it and its songs.

Lindsey: The concept relates to the division in society today and that despite how much negativity and hate there is there are people who are strong enough to surpass that.

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?

Adam: We tend to develop our songs in our studio: We’ll have basic ideas and outlines, but once we’re tracking and start to hear the composition come alive, it guides us in which direction the song should go.

Is there a live side to the band yet?

Lindsey: Exoaura is new, so we haven’t started touring yet. But with our past projects, for me it’s the combination of getting lost in the feeling our music, while connecting to the audience so that they can experience the intense emotion that went into writing it. That synergy is just unforgettable.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands?

Adam: Honestly, I think it is far easier now than it has ever been. Regionally speaking, metal is very much alive and kicking in the Pacific Northwest, and we are very fortunate of that. We’re from Spokane, not far from Seattle, one of the largest music scenes in the US and have proximity to a very active music community here. Nationally and further afield, bands have access to social media, digital discovery services and by leveraging analytics/demographics, any band in any genre can find and connect with their target audience. We’re a new band ourselves and even in the past few months we’ve been asked for tour dates from here in the US all the way to Brazil.

…And the internet and social media. How has that impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as some artists seem to almost expect?

Adam: As a DIY artist, social media and digital streaming services are incredibly valuable, nearly mandatory resources. I happen to have a marketing background, which has certainly helped Exoaura’s online presence. The evolution of how music is accessed is something musicians just have to adopt. Each platform and strategy has its own learning curve, sure, but the reward of understanding these tools is far greater.

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

Lindsey: You’re so welcome! Yes, our official release date for our EP is June 30th, 2017. And of course, thank you to all our fans for your love and support! Find us https://www.exoaura.com/

Explore Exoaura further @ https://www.facebook.com/Exoauraband/    https://twitter.com/exoauraband

Pete RingMaster 07/07/2017

Zedi Forder – Self Titled

Some bands and artists just click with ears and imagination from their introduction and for us one was definitely UK trio Zedi Forder. Maybe it is more accurate to say the creative force behind the band crafted the connection because previous adventures for the duo of vocalist/drummer/primary songwriter Chris Kerley and guitarist Mark Carstairs have equalled seriously enticed and stoked the passions. They are also the creators of Tricore, An Entire Legion, and Rind Skank; all distinctly individual bands releasing some of the most exciting and imaginative adventures in recent years though each being sadly missed or ignored by a tide of major attention. Zedi Forder is their latest project, with bassist Richard Tomsett alongside, creating a bold and multi-flavoured mix of alternative metal and voracious rock ‘n’ roll which fuels a self-titled debut album that quite simply deserves greed driven recognition.

In some ways because of previous seductions of our passions, Zedi Forder get a head start in a want, or should that be need, to hear its exploits and an assumption of having some level of appetite for what may be on offer. Equally though, it makes expectations much more demanding and triggers the question of can the band create something unique and fresh enough to be truly new from past endeavours as much as those around them. Many bands or musicians struggle in one guise but across a few it is a rare success. The release of an also self-titled EP in 2015 suggested the Woking hailing outfit could and would, their first album now a striking confirmation going well beyond simply bearing out that proposal though understandably it also gives delicious slithers teasing at earlier explorations which adds to rather than defuses the originality.

The Zedi Forder bio says it is a band with a split personality. “One side is driven by the musical aim of being bold and ever hopeful. The other side is fearless and judgmental, with music that reflects this.” The album certainly reflects this suggestion, its songs, sometimes within themselves, twisting from creatively free-swinging and swashbuckling to imaginatively mischievous on to proposals forceful and emotionally edgy and cutting but all crafted with an instinct for rousing sounds, manipulative rhythms, and daring diversity.

The album opens up with Killakarta and instantly consumes ears with rapacious riffs and jabbing beats as a bass growl courts a thick wiry groove. Kerley’s distinctive and ever magnetic vocals are soon in the heart of the mix, steering the song’s muscular stroll with expression and flair. That initial groove, carrying a growl far more vocal in the bass of Tomsett, winds around the imagination; it trespass enjoyably toxic and addictively refreshing. A slip into a mellow climate is just as tempting, accentuating the song’s unpredictability before being overwhelmed by a more primal expulsion of sound and intensity, reclaiming its moment as a great jazzy lilt infests the bass.

Seductive and predatory in equal measure, the track is a glorious start to an emprise of imagination and craft backed by the arguably less mercurial Machines though it is no slouch in raising its temperature and dynamics across a persistently eventful body. Kerley’s beats bite as Carstairs’ melodies spin a web of suggestion; his trap of enterprise further ignited by possibly the most virulent and catchy hook lined groove you will hear this year.

Dark Mook is a kaleidoscope of sound and texture, its opening noisy glaze slipping into a funky pop tinged stroll of melody and harmony before grungier flames escape guitars and bass as Kerley consistently croons with his never wavering melodic dexterity before I’m the one offers its own individual tempting for an already aroused and on the brink of lustful appetite. The fourth track also opens with a bracing surge of raw sound but is soon entangling the listener in a flirtatiously earthy bassline with funk in its genes and as quickly catchy vocals and beats with a sense of devilry in their gait. Carstairs’ weave of melodic teasing is a riveting net to get caught up in, ensnaring the senses before things get dirty and feisty though Kerley is still keeping the instinctive catchiness flowing in touch as the track to re-establishes its unbridled virulence. The song is another early pinnacle; an irresistible treat with a great 12 Stone Toddler meets KingBathmat scent to its revelry.

Darker shadows wrap the melodic beauty and volatile turbulence of next up My Moon, the song drawing on electronic tenacity to colour its variable and perpetually alluring atmosphere above a rugged terrain of invention. Across its roar, thoughts pluck at comparisons to the likes of Sick Puppies, Voyager, and Soundgarden; all slightly inaccurate but potent hints to the great track.

The grin loaded Nachoman comes next, the song a compelling tongue in cheek but earnest tease of social commentary. It has voice and hips hooked within its opening Red Hot Chili Peppers smoked swerve and only proceeds to tighten its vice like grip through heavier spices and inventive condiments of sound while Open Wide grabs attention with a bullish tirade of sound before flirtatiously dancing in ears with its Jane’s Addiction like funk metal meets System Of A Down seeded versatility. Melodies and emotions fluctuate in character and intensity across the song, as too vocals and rhythms with the latter an evolving torrent of enticement and aggression.

They love it more is a cyclone of sound and energy within an oasis of reflection and melody, never truly settling but always in control of its volcanic fusion of rock and metal while successor Smooch is a predator of hips and imagination with its boisterous shuffle courted by barbarous rhythms and emerging sonic hostility again spurned on by the spiky beats of Kerley and the irritable tone of Tomsett’s bass. With an infection loaded and at times psychotic groove sharing lures with an inherent catchiness, the track as its predecessor hits the spot dead centre, burrowing deeper with every listen, as quite simply does the album.

The growling Time after time leaves no stone of temptation unturned, its grunge/metal snarl maybe the most creatively untwisted track on the release but as bold and naturally infectious as any others such as the following On the run, a slab of classic metal and heavy rock with a nod to the likes of Zeppelin and Sabbath in its heart infused with the progressive and melody conjuring imagination of Zedi Forder.

Though not the actual final song, Lonely One closes things off with its melodically haunting, sonically searing, and rhythmically imposing blaze which alone shares all you need to know to hear why its creators warrant unbridled attention.

With a bonus quartet of mesmeric acoustic tracks which alone prove why we rate Kerley as a vocalist so much, each also unveiling a new drama and shade to the original’s aspects, the album is manna for body and soul and a real bargain as it seems it is being released as a name your own price download. Covering their first EP we said “it would be rude not to go off and discover its majesty “, for the album substitute ‘rude’ for ‘stupid’ because you will surely not hear anything more gripping and exciting than what Zedi Forder have in lying wait.

The Zedi Forder album is released June 10th wit pre-ordering available now @ https://tricore.bandcamp.com/album/zedi-forder-the-album-out-10th-june-pre-order-to-get-4-tracks-entire-flame-wiz-album-now

http://www.zediforder.com/     https://www.facebook.com/zediforder/   https://twitter.com/ZediForder

Pete RingMaster 02/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

ANEWRAGE – Life-Related Symptoms

Described as alternative metal but just as much grunge and melodic rock hued in its ear pleasing design, the ANEWRAGE sound makes for a swiftly appetising proposition as proven by the Italian outfit’s new album, Life-Related Symptoms. A blend of the familiar with openly fresh imagination and adventure, something akin to a fusion of Sick Puppies and Three Days Grace, the release has ears hooked and pleasure stoked from its first seconds; holding both with ease across its thirteen infection loaded proposals.

Hailing from Milan, ANEWRAGE began in 2009; its members friends since kids. Soon they found local success and with the release of debut album ANR in 2014, were keenly touring across their homeland and Switzerland, playing with the likes of Gamma Ray, Freak Kitchen, Dreamshade, and Destrage along the way. Last year saw the band writing and working on sophomore album Life-Related Symptoms, a release which should take the ANEWRAGE name and sound to a far broader and attentive landscape.

Produced by Matteo Magni (Rhyme, Audrey, Mellowtoy), Life-Related Symptoms makes a potent and highly satisfying impression straight away but it is fair to say that it is with subsequent listens that it comes into its own; increasingly grabbing attention with its imaginative twists and web of virulent hooks. It all begins with Upside Down, a song opening with pure rock ‘n’ roll bait quickly joined by the strong tones of vocalist Axel Capurro and the rhythmic grumble of bassist Simone Martin and drummer Alessandro Ferrarese. The groaning grooves and spiky riffs of guitarist Manuel Sanfilippo are as eagerly tempting, his backing vocals providing rich backing to Capurro’s quickly impressing lead. With shimmering sonic flirtation breaking through across the catchy introduction, the album makes a strong and contagious start.

It is a powerful beginning quickly backed up by My Worst Friend, a more laid back track but with a just as healthy catchiness and bite in its rhythms and lyrical voice. With electronic essences even more prominent, the boisterous croon quickly has body and appetite in its hands before Dancefloor has both engaged with its senses clipping riffs and dark shuffle of emotive shadows. With matching suggestiveness to its melodic enterprise, the song prowls more than romps with the listener but leaves thick satisfaction in its wake which Tomorrow further inflames with its atmospheric caress around a melody spun jangle. With a more volatile edge to its rhythms and heart, things only becomes more intriguing as a jazz kissed bassline and fiery swipes of guitar bring greater depth to the textures entangling within the song.

A thicker metal sourced growl provides the backbone to next up Evolution Circle, riffs bringing an instinctive snarl emulated in some of the great variety making up the song’s vocal enterprise while Floating Man and The 21st Century respectively cast a progressively hued, melody woven adventure and a rhythmically excitable and boisterous escapade. The first of the pair especially bewitches, its body the most unique so far in the first handful of songs revealing greater imagination and boldness in the band’s songwriting but pretty much matched by the flirtatious design and ingredients of its successor.

The short almost haunting serenade of Life Is You is a tender caress of melodic and harmonic beauty perfectly setting up the darker air and character of Outside. The firmly captivating track is a brooding slightly intimidating proposal coloured with more of the band’s excellent vocal prowess and emotively honed melodies.

All The Way has its own strongly enjoyable time with ears next, if without quite matching up to numerous peaks in the landscape of the album before it with Insight hitting another peak straight after in that success with its emotional and sonic discord kissed grumble though it too is eclipsed by the irresistible Clockwork Therapy where ANEWRAGE simply uncages its boldest flight of creative adventure. The song is glorious, clicking along like a mechanical toy in the hands of its creative puppeteers to steal best song honours.

The heart and melodically fuelled Wolves And Sirens completes Life-Related Symptoms, providing a fine end to a release which has no trouble drawing repeated listens in quick time. It might not be thick on major surprises but certainly has plenty of unpredictability to keep ears and expectations guessing and the craft and imagination to spark real enjoyment and we suspect a whole new ball-game of attention the way of ANEWRAGE.

Life-Related Symptoms is out now through Scarlet Records @ https://scarletrecords.bandcamp.com/album/life-related-symptoms and numerous online stores.

http://www.anewrage.com/    https://www.facebook.com/ANEWRAGE/    https://twitter.com/anewrage

Pete RingMaster 18/04/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Figures – Self Titled EP

Figures_RingMasterReview

Melbourne is one of those cities persistently producing exciting new musical proposals and another to strongly add to the long list is Figures. Firmly established and acclaimed in the Australian rock scene, the quintet now have their sights on much broader attention with their self-titled debut EP leading the way. Offering four tracks of melodic/alternative metal with numerous other strains of rock involved, the release is a striking and seriously accomplished encounter with a sound very easy to find a healthy appetite for.

Formed in 2014, Figures has shared stages with the likes of Caligula’s Horse, Twelve Foot Ninja, Superheist and many others since then, luring heavy praise along the way. Their first single Filter equally courted acclaim and attention the way of the band, it taking them across to the US to perform at MUSEXPO’s Global Rock Summit in Los Angeles. Taken from the EP it made for an attention poking lead and gets the release off to a mighty start.

The song’s first touch is a gentle melodic caress, Filter coaxing ears as the guitars of Paul Callow and Simon Edgell wind up their energy and enterprise for the subsequent fire of riffs and grooves. Quickly the swiftly impressive vocals of Mark Tronson shine in their midst as the similarly enticing groan of Jen Fletcher’s bass and the swinging prowess of drummer Josh Sforzin add darker depth and texture to the already compelling blaze. The band has been compared to the likes of Incubus and Karnivool and in some ways you can suggest Circles, Voyager, and to a lesser extent Shattered Skies too though Figures quickly establish their own character in song and release.

cover_RingMasterReviewEqually fiercely robust and enticingly elegant, the song is a formidable introduction strongly backed by its companions starting with Desolate. Quickly the second song sounds very familiar though we cannot remember hearing it prior to the EP yet it cannot stop the fiery serenade of the track seducing ears and passions. Its melodies and harmonies caress the senses, its snarling riffs and boisterous rhythms raising the spirit and though it takes a touch longer to tempt as its predecessor, it blossoms into its equal.

Again making initial contact with a warm lure, Vice soon looms over ears with a web of wiry grooves and intrusive hooks as raw riffs and rapacious rhythms court the ever impressing mix of vocals and harmonies. There is aggression fuelled attitude at the heart of the song, giving it great underlying irritability as its mellower textures spread their charm, a blend sublimely igniting all four songs in varying ways with the closing Emoticonic no exception.

It gets straight down to offering growling confrontation though it is quickly interrupted and thereon in interspersed by washes of melodically inflamed imagination. The spiral of metallic tendrils really hits the spot though from start to finish, the whole song only feeds an already hungry appetite bred by the EP for what Figures have on offer right now and anticipation for their continuing growth.

Already 2017 is proving to be an exciting and impressive surge of emerging bands tempting bigger spotlights with Figures right there on the frontline.

The Figures EP is out now and available @ https://figuresbandofficial.bandcamp.com/releases

http://www.figuresband.com/   https://www.facebook.com/figuresbandofficial

Pete RingMaster 01/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Spinning sounds, casting adventures: getting to grips with Weesp

weesp_RingMasterReview

Hailing from Minsk, Belarus, Weesp is an electronic/alternative rock band which has certainly grown in sound and presence since emerging in 2008. Musically they cast a web of flavours and textures in a sound which demands attention and as the band’s debut album released last year, The Void, lures acclaim. With thanks to the band who shared their time with us, we sought to get to the heart of the band; talking sound, album, and a small Netherlands town…

Hi guys; many thanks for talking with us.

Lex: It’s our pleasure. Thanks for inviting us.

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

Stak: There are five of us. Lex on vocals, Mike on guitars, Mi on bass and Gul is a drummer. Me, Stak, (keys) joined later.

Lex: We started as a school band and then Weesp was created just like that.

Have there been previous bands/projects for band members before Weesp?

Stak: Not really, I played guitar in a band before. Then my brother, Mi, invited me to join Weesp with keys.

Mi: Gul played in another band before he took the drummer place in Weesp. But the rest of the guys and me are playing from school time. Anyway since we are in Weesp, none of us ever cheated the band with other projects.

What inspired the band name?

Lex (vocals): The name came out just like that long time ago. We just wanted the name to be short and unobtrusive to avoid putting us in any musical style limits. We like it means nothing, but just a name. Good or not, but it is so.

Mi (bass): Then we found that there is a small town called Weesp near Amsterdam. It was funny when local news reporter contacted me for an interview and asked about our name and I had no idea such a town even exists 🙂 Later we went there and even gave an interview to local radio.

weesp2_RingMasterReviewWas there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it to offer sound wise?

Lex: The main idea always was to bring a little bit of something new to the world of music…And of course to stay sincere, to make music that we love.

Mi: Yes, the style changed quite a lot while Weesp exists. But I‘m sure it’s only for the best.

Those same things primarily still drive the band or have they evolved over time?

Mi: Of course we grew from album to album, developing our own style. You can see the whole evolution if you’ll listen through all of our discography from ep2008vol1 and Taste of Steel to The Void. One thing has never changed – the sincerity and energy that we always try to give to fans.

You talk of that evolution in sound, how would you specifically describe it?

Lex: I think it became more dark, serious and rough. And we like it, considering there are still a lot of melody and contrasts we like so much.

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

Lex: Both. We always seek for our own sound, and there is always that feeling that we are so close. May be the sound we looking for changes together with us.

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 music?

Stak: There are so many of them. You know, all the guys in Weesp prefer different styles of music mostly. But we all try to listen to everything we can learn from. It affects Weesp music from different sides and helping to avoid copying any particular bands style.

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

Lex: We usually compose songs together, at the studio. Sometimes it’s fast and inspired. Sometimes it’s pain in the ass with fights and loud swearing. Good thing is that we stay friends despite our opinion often differing. I write lyrics myself, and I’m glad it is so, can’t imagine other way.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to that lyrical side?

Mi: We get an inspiration from the life around us. Mostly from the negative sides of it, but it does happen through some positive stories out there. Our last album – The Void is inspired by personal experiences and great upheavals of each of us…Although there are positive notes in it as well. I am confident that these feelings can be sensed and understood by our listeners. Therefore, we build an invisible bond with them.

Can you give us some background to your latest release?weesp-the-void_RingMasterReview

Stak: The latest released album is called The Void. You should definitely check it out if you like alternative rock, metal, or any unusual sound mixes.

Lex: It’s our first long play album. We had released a couple of EP albums and singles before. You know, searching for own sound, experimenting. In fact we’ve been putting off the recording of a full LP for years, realizing how serious that work is, and feeling we’re not ready yet.

I remember very clearly when Mike brought a riff at the rehearsal. All the guys found something so special in it at once. Whole band felt it, and the song came out just like that, almost in a couple of hours – all the arrangement, vocals melody, everything! That song didn’t sound like a classic “hit song” or whatever, but it had that special mood… I never could describe it other way then “the void”. That night all of us knew that this is going to be a title song for our first LP album.

Would you give us some insight to the themes and premise behind it?

Lex: Most of the songs are about the moments, the seconds, good or bad, when you feel alive. There are also many songs about the dark side of personality and the demons imprisoned inside every one of us. Fighting temptations, making decisions, gaining an understanding of what is good and what is evil nowadays…And off course living further, no matter what.

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?

Lex: We prefer to go to the studio with pretty much understanding what we are going to do there and what we want to get. Most of the songs are completely ready before we start recording.

Mi:  But sometimes we do exclusions. For example we recorded Beware The Blind Spots without a single rehearsal. Lex wrote an arrangement right before we went to studio, and we gave it try. It’s one of our favorite songs to play live now.

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

Lex: You are completely right. You know, we like the recording process and we approach it with a lot of care. But what we really love, and what we consider our main strength is a live performance. We get a lot of positive feedback after each.

Stak: For us, live performance is first of all giving the audience all the energy from the stage. And I can’t describe that great feeling when the audience gives the maximum energy back to the stage.

weesp3_RingMasterReviewIt is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it?

Lex:  It never was easy. But we believe everything is possible. We love what we are doing, and I’m sure there are a lot of people who will love it too. I think there are quite a lot of opportunities for the bands who know what they want and ready to work.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band tries to escape the crowd and hopefully gets increasing success?

Mi: Of course it gives chances to all those who could not get one any other way. Although it also means more competition between the bands, in fact internet and social media nowadays put the performer so close to the listener like never before. We think the main goal for a band is understanding who their listener is and how to reach him. We have just started our advance in the musical market, and we feel good about it.

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

Lex: Thank you everybody, and keep in touch. We really appreciate it guys when you show up and let us know what you think.

Mi: Don’t forget to check our music out here:

https://soundcloud.com/weesp   https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/weesp/id925286149

https://play.spotify.com/artist/5bzjEo4lbY89BUsi1T3lMb

https://play.google.com/store/music/artist/Weesp?id=Axncoeytszcfeyxt56uvywlfwki

If you want to have CD, or other merch, please visit these stores:

http://weespmerch.bigcartel.com/   https://weesp.bandcamp.com/merch

https://www.facebook.com/weespband/

Pete Ringmaster

The RingMaster Review 18/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright