Seething Akira – Sleepy Skeletor

Since emerging back in 2011 within the sea faring surroundings of Portsmouth, British crossover outfit Seething Akira has been teasing away at rich attention with increasing success. We suggest though that it has been a mere nagging compared to the hunger the band can and should expect with the release of debut album Sleepy Skeletor. It is a web of alternative metal and electro rock imagination with plenty more to entice and ensnare. It is a sleepless affair rousing body and spirit which even in its calmer moments has the body bouncing and imagination feasting.

Created by Charlie Bowes (songwriter/keyboardist/vocalist) and Kit Conrad (lead vocalist), the band has leap from local success to national recognition through their sounds and a dynamic live presence which over the years has seen them shares stages with the likes of Skindred, The Qemists, Hacktivist, Senser, Don Broco, and Pop Will Eat Itself as well as play Bloodstock Festival, Victorious Festival, Breakout Festival, Mammothfest amongst others. This year the band was chosen as one of five upcoming bands, alongside, Saint Apache, Damn Dice, The Rocket Dolls and The Sixpounder, to support Pitchshifter on their first UK tour in ten years. The Incoming Transmission EP of 2012 was when our fascination with Seething Akira began, it becoming so much keener as for so many others through their acclaimed 2015 single Airstrike, a song frequently eclipsed and more than matched by the offerings within Sleepy Skeletor.

Walking a fine balance between alternative metal, industrial rock, and electro punk; never fully committing to any but always entangling the richest traits of all and more, Sleepy Skeletor opens properly with The Monster from Brussels. Instantly the synths of Bowes provide an infectious pulse, the guitar of Harvey Ware swiftly adding its lure before the rest of the band jump in with fevered energy to create a Senser like confrontation. Thick and imposing, it is a captivating wall of temptation creating a grooved stroll alongside a Beastie Boys inspired vocal arousal rather easy to become addicted to, its tenacity interrupted by melodic washes of intimation and seduction.

It is an outstanding start quickly matched by recent single Matching Poles of Magnets. With steelier textures to its electro metal predation, bands like Axis Mundi and Silent Descent coming to mind, the track twists and turns with instinctive and rapacious adventure before Half Empty brings a warm calm to the senses. Immediately vocals echo this mellow breath with their melodic unity but equally a rising discontent in the heart of the song brews as things become more intense and irritable. It never reaches an aggressive state though, revolving through melancholic elegance and emotive exposure as a weave of rich enterprise wraps vocal reflection.

I Am The Devil, another single released earlier this year follows, instantly infests ears with its electro metal rumble and a hook which needs meres seconds to have us lustfully wanting more. Something akin to G.R.I.M meets dirt encrusted Pop Will Eat with the rousing catchiness of Hadouken, the track throbs and snarls as the rhythmic prowess and incitement of bassist Richard Ellis Speaight and drummer Stu Radcliffe manipulate.

Featuring Olly Simmons from Brighton band The Qemists, Backlash is next up and similarly merges heavy almost dissonant attitude and sound with electronic trespass as it prowls the senses. It is a predacious edge which never dissipates across the track’s mercurial but persistently invasive landscape. Another of the songs released prior to the album as a single in 2018 ensuring its anticipation was heightened; the absorbing encounter passes over attention to the outstanding Pack Animals. It too has a whiff of Senser to its emotionally and lyrically charged incitement; synth and guitar weaving an intimation of intrigue and danger around the threat of the rhythms as once again vocals irrepressible entice.

The character of successor Paralysed is similarly natured and conjured but swiftly evolving into a melodic croon and seduction which inspired even greater participation before the cycle repeats with greater volatility but equally greater elegance in its respective moments.

The album ends with firstly Even Angels Break Hearts which sees Dani Uziel guesting and finally Disconnect. The first of the two is a fluid blend of sonic antagonism and melodic beauty with Uziel’s tones simply beguiling, she almost like a siren luring ears into Conrad’s feral attack and the song’s tempestuous depths. The second provides three and a half minutes of electro punk metal thick in attitude and malcontent but equally rich in rousing energy and adventurous imagination.

Major attention upon Seething Akira has been a little overdue to our mind; Sleepy Skeletor should remedy that, arousing a whole new tide of fans to their insatiably and dramatically potent sound.

Sleepy Skeletor is out now; available on all major streaming platforms.

Upcoming shows:

Sleepy Skele-tour:

July 6th – Anvil, Bournemouth (Album release show)

July 7th – The 27 Club, Liverpool

July 8th – Mulberry Tavern, Sheffield

July 9th – Satan’s Hollow, Manchester

July 10th – The Underground, Plymouth

July 11th – Fat Lil’s Bar, Witney

July 12th – The Unicorn, Camden

July 13th – The Junction, Ashford

July 14th – The Sussex Arms, Tunbridge Wells

July 15th – The Joiners, Southampton

———————————————–

August 25th – Electrowerkz London supporting CUBANATE

August 26th – BYLINE FESTIVAL, Pippingford Park, Ashdown Forest with Pussy Riot, Badly Drawn Boy, The Vapors, The Blow Monkeys, John Cleese, Hugh Grant, Alexie Sayle…

November 19th – Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth supporting PITCHSHIFTER

http://www.seethingakira.com/   https://www.facebook.com/seethingakira   https://twitter.com/SEETHINGAKIRA

Pete RingMaster 03/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Tailblock – Think Or Be

As much as instant slavery of ears goes down a treat with us offerings which take their time to blossom and accelerate their temptation are just as enjoyable. Think Or Be, the new EP from British trio Tailblock manages to be as good as both. It is a six track roar which easily grabbed the appetite from its first attack but only grew and flourished with greater and in turn keener attention play by play. High praise took to its predecessor couple years back and it is unlikely it will be a stranger this time around either.

Hailing from Dartford in Kent and emerging in 2016, Tailblock released debut EP, Burn Your Bridges, at the close of that first year. It was produced by Ian Sadler (Anavae, Roam), who returns to add his touch to Think Or Be, and as said earned numerous plaudits. Inspirations to the band include the likes of Glassjaw, Hundred Reasons, Rival Schools, and Reuben and it is the latter which most comes to mind in varying shades across the new EP. Even so, the threesome of Jak Coleman (bass guitar/backing vocals), Martyn Kingsmill (drums/percussion/backing harmonies), and Gary Ptaszek (guitar/lead vocals) hold their own individuality in a release which sees their post hardcore nurtured sound much more assured, diverse, and adventurous than in that first encounter.

The EP opens up with its title track and an immediately insistent tide of riffs and rhythms from which a delicious hook springs to quickly be joined by the strong tones of Ptaszek. In no time it is a rousing roar, even in its calmer moments a spirit sparking incitement from within which that infernal hook has ears and lust dangling.

It is a seriously infectious and muscular start to the release firmly backed up by Heavy Arms. The band’s latest single it too teases and tempts with a hook which just gets under the skin, this time the band using it from the first second to nag and tempt. There is a more controlled gait to the song and a swing which had the body moving in unison, Jamie Lenman and co an easy comparison to its opening infection. There is also an underlying volatility which does not quite ignite but definitely adds a great feral quality around the pure catchiness of the song. A mix of pop, punk, and alternative rock, the track is thick contagion with the backing vocals of Coleman and Kingsmill as potent as Ptaszek’s lead and all three’s musical prowess.

Rocket follows quickly establishing its heavier presence as the wires of the guitar and throbbing lines of the bass surround the thumping beats of Kingsmill. It too has a catchiness which cannot fail to incite feet but did miss the particular spark of its predecessor for our ears. Its emotive edge though is a strong hue, an increasingly persuasive one which leaves nothing on the table within the ferocious Blisters. A fiery attitude soaked offering as inescapably catchy as it is imposingly aggressive it soon steals favourite track honours especially with its melodically seductive climax.

The EP concludes with firstly Listen, a song rising from a rockabilly-esque temptation to another emotionally charged yet controlled saunter. Even so its melancholic elegance erupts in moments of sonic fire with its mercurial landscape a ride of heart bred turbulence and tenacious enterprise. Its successor, 100, similarly has a great unpredictable air and touch to its character, acoustic coaxing and vocal reflection leading to melodic infection and spirited release in emotion and sound.

It is a fine end to a proposition which grows and further impresses by the listen. From the start we rather liked it, now it is one we fiercely recommend. There can never be another Reuben, one of our all-time loves at The RR, but in their own distinct way that gap just might be filled by Tailblock; Think Or Be suggests so.

Think Or Be is released July 13th digitally and on CD.

https://www.facebook.com/tailblockband

Pete RingMaster 05/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Between The Lines – To The Wind

We can debate whether two tracks constitutes an EP or a single as in the ‘old days’ but what was easy to agree on at The RR is that To The Wind, the debut release from UK outfit Between The Lines, is one very enjoyable and blatantly contagious affair. Creating a mix of pop punk and alternative rock, the Bedfordshire based quintet has introduced themselves in fine energetic style.

Formed in 2017, Between The Lines soon inspired potent local and further afield support before earning shows alongside the likes of Better Than Never, The Young & Restless, SEASONS, and Reckless Intentions. There has been real energy to the emergence of the melodic punks which has been as infectious as the spirit in the two tracks which have attention locked, pleasure loaded, and the body bouncing within their debut.

To The Wind starts with its title track, a distant rhythmic heartbeat swiftly looming in with that seemingly instinctive spunkiness quickly being joined by an animated hook amidst lively riffs. Settling into its snappy stroll, the enticing vocals of Alex Lewis step forward with a delivery which reveals potent variety as the song continues. Driving the track, the beats of Tom Hogan nag and harry ears, inviting eager physical response as the guitars of Adam Brewster and Sam Burnage spin their web of melodic and spiky goodness. Perpetually cored by that flirtatious hook, the track leaves ears wanting little; certainly there is something strongly familiar about the track but it only adds to its vivacity as the band’s more individual potential hints.

Second song is Anywhere But Here and it too needs a mere breath to manipulate feet and attention as riffs and tenacious rhythms get to work. Whereas the bass of Lewis Wolton was sunk a touch too much into the mix of its predecessor for personal tastes, it is a throbbing lure at the forefront of the final song with his lines as inescapably virile as the rousing vocal roar and the urgency of the guitars. Punk rock unapologetically catchy and punchy with great zeal in its heart the song hit the spot with ease.

Being suggested for those with an appetite of bands such as Four Year Strong, Chunk! No Captain Chunk, and State Champs, Between The Lines is a band worthy of keeping a close ear upon especially if they can realise the promise of their excellent debut and fuel it with the uniqueness they are already giving glimpses of.

To The Wind is released July 6th digitally and on CD.

https://www.facebook.com/BTLUK   https://twitter.com/betweenTLband

Pete RingMaster 05/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Lightness Of Being – Diversions

Called Diversions, the new EP from UK rockers The Lightness Of Being is just that, a diversion from the bland and predictable in sound and life and one ear thoroughly compelling distraction it is too. Formed in 2010, the London hailing outfit has already uncaged a pair of attention stoking EPs to date but are surely poised to flare up on far bigger and broader radars with their new offering.

Inspirations are said to come from the likes of Queens Of The Stone Age, Mastodon, and Deftones but the three tracks within Diversions show they are influences immersed in the quartet’s own and still growing character of sound. Each song is individual to another and all cruising along the fine line between seduction and predation with relish and imagination.

The EP opens with Bottomfeeder and immediately nags ears with a line of controlled but lustful riffs punctured by just as eager beats. The vocals of guitarist/keyboardist Gabriel Lim rise up within the quickly delicious bait bringing with him menace and intimation which subsequently inspires a ferocious squall; it’s settling back down the spark to repeat the delicious cycle. Fresh drama blossoms by the minute though, new instinctive strains of rapacious enterprise as dark and threatening as it is captivating. There is also a touch of early Therapy? to the song which only adds to its striking presence and persuasion.

Cave follows, a song openly embracing that Deftones inspiration. Its atmospheric caresses provide a mellow sigh to complement the similarly calm tones of Lim, the guitar of Sam West a radiant shimmer alongside as the mist of keys is slowly walked through by the sombre but magnetic stroll of Chris French’s bass. With the crisp beats of Sergiusz Brudek adding their inviting touch it is an infectious calm yet there is a sense of disturbance glimpsed in its depths, one which brews and festers until erupting in an immersive wash of volatility and sonic intensity. We cannot say that the song sparked the same richness of reaction and pleasure as its companions just due to personal tastes but there is no denying that it had ears gripped and appetite feasting before drifting away.

Closing song Refute took our favourite title, its blend of voracious punk ‘n’ roll and dark rock with grungier/alternative rock devilment quickly getting under the skin to incite and manipulate rock ‘n’ roll instincts. A host of flavours make up its swinging escapade, each a fiercely flavoursome spice aligning it’s almost garage punk instincts; just a shame it only lasts two minutes plus but a brief time which had us bouncing and growling.

There is plenty seemingly familiar about the sound of The Lightness Of Being but nothing less than fresh and individual to the band all the same. It is a great mix which makes Diversions a rich listen and the band ones to keep under close scrutiny.

Diversions is released 1st June.

http://thelightnessofbeing.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/TheLightnessOfBeing   https://twitter.com/TLOBmusic

Pete RingMaster 29/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Perfect Line – Seeds

As a rule we never finalise any opinion on a release until multiple plays have passed by. It is something we learnt with the first System Of A Down album, not being taken by it on the first listen but returning to it weeks after and with increasing rigour it became one of our all-time favourite encounters. The debut album from French trio Perfect Line was a similar proposition; not that we did not enjoy its offerings on first listen but it was through numerous outings and the nagging quality and imagination the songs within Seeds revealed that it really grabbed our attention.

Paris hailing Perfect Line pretty much began in 2011 with the creative union of lead vocalist/bassist Thomas d’Arbigny and guitarist/vocalist Paul Pavillon. Inspired by an array of styles, many nineties bred, the duo’s alternative rock is a multi-flavoured proposition which commands attention. 2012 saw drummer Julien Audigier brought into the line-up and the release of a self-titled debut EP. Gaetan Allard replaced Audiger soon after and the current line-up was in place, a trio now knocking on bigger doors with Seeds.

The album opens with Everything; a slice of melodic rock with a grunge lining which coaxes and lures ears rather than grabs but soon has them attentive with its infectious exploits and accomplished air. It never makes any demands but from rhythms and enterprise to energy and aggression only entices and increasingly so as its adventurous body twists and turns. In many ways it plays like an old friend, familiar essences at play but has a freshness which urges another listen and another, much as the album.

The following Wywd opens with rhythmic bait and sonic teasing which just gets under the skin, it a prelude to a rapacious wave of inventive sound. It is a superb start which is followed by a bit of an anti-climax as the song then slips into a mellow caress though it is soon bubbling with suggestion and unpredictability which surges in varying states of eagerness. The song is a fascinating proposition; one which for personal tastes maybe promises more than it delivers yet never has a moment when you are looking for something else to explore.

Be My Guest follows, a great dark grumble courting its croon before it roars with gusto and power, d’Arbigny’s fine vocals to the fore. His bass is a pulsating throb in its midst, the biting beats of Allard swinging with relish as Pavillon’s guitar weaves a melodic and sonic tapestry, the track as much a seduction as a trespass. With a rousing blues rock lining, the song is a tenacious pleasure quickly matched in enjoyment by the contagious shuffle of Red Coach. Its gentle emotive beginning does not give a clue to the energetic dance to follow, alternative and grunge tinged rock colouring its subsequent magnetic rock ‘n’ roll. Feet and hips were soon involved once it did hit its stride, the song one of many casting persistently nagging hooks.

The imagination within the band’s songs is a rich essence to the album, Free epitomising the quality with its melancholic yet seductive strings provided by Arnaud Affolter and a tapestry of sounds and ideas which all give expectations a wide berth. Again Perfect Line entangle many styles in their aural weave and once more has attention firmly enticed as the track smoulders, saunters ,and erupts.

Through the adventurous almost loco web of Bad Boy, a song with a great Alice In Chains hue to it and the emotive balladry of Afraid the album accentuates its growing persuasion with the first of the two especially compelling though its successor has a firm grip too with its drama and emotional volatility. Even so they are still eclipsed by the virulent rock ‘n’ roll of Get Out, the track further evidence that Seeds was blossoming and getting better song by song for these ears. The track is another which seemed familiar in some way but it only added to its rousing holler and catchy prowess on the way to becoming our favourite song.

The animated escapade of Tired quickly gave it a run for its money though, the track a fusion of brooding mischief and melodic temptation around rhythms which just land with glee. It is fair to say that a grunge scent is never far away from a Perfect Line song, this embracing a Stone Temple Pilots meets Alice In Chains spicing in its increasingly hypnotic stroll.

Seeds is not an album of two halves but for us its latter tracks really hit the spot and with increasing persuasion, Space Race proof with its glorious stomp of infection loaded rock ‘n’ roll. Remember that favourite song moment, as this track plays in the background of tapping keys we might have a change of mind or at the very least a major rival. The track is glorious, a roar to ignite any day with its Foo Fighters-esque blaze.

Slow Down and At Last complete the album, the first another slice of magnetism with a joyful swagger and emotive flames around a devilish core of hooks and lures while the second is a fire of sound rising and simmering along a deviously alluring length.

Seeds might very well grab ears with a firm hand from its first listen but given time it really will take off making it a release which is very difficult to leave it alone, something we can certainly testify to.

Seeds is out now; available @ https://dooweet.bandcamp.com/album/seeds

http://www.perfectlinemusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/perfectlinemusic   https://twitter.com/perfectline4

Pete RingMaster 22/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Black Orchid Empire – Yugen

With a critically acclaimed debut album already under their belt and a strong reputation earned for their energy surging live side, Black Orchid Empire look at even greater attention with new full-length Yugen. With eleven tracks of adventurous heavy weight alternative rock embracing the familiar and individual whilst unleashing hooks so easy to get snagged upon and lithe grooves to swing from, the UK outfit’s second album is a rather tasty proposition with regular moments of imposing captivation.

Since emerging in 2011, the London hailing trio has drawn increasing attention with their fiery yet resourcefully and carefully woven sound. That well-praised first album, Archetype, put them solidly on the radar of media and new fans alike, its release in 2016 the ignition to their continuing ascent within the British rock scene sure to be escalated by Yugen. Alongside the former’s success, Black Orchid Empire has been a potent live presence, making numerous much-lauded festival appearances at the likes of Standon Calling, Planet Rockstock, Camden Rocks, and Germany’s Taubertal Festival and sharing stages with artists such as Biffy Clyro, Editors, Skunk Anansie, and Hed P.E who the threesome supported on a UK tour.

Now the band is ready to stir up fresh fuss around themselves, success which even from the boisterous persuasion of opening track of Yugen you get the feeling is close to being a done deal. My Favourite Stranger is also the new single from Black Orchid Empire, a song stirring from a distant sonic squall with a great grumbling rusty bass lure quickly bound in the wiry tendrils of Paul Visser’s guitar. As the song settles without losing those tempting elements, his equally enticing vocals step forward backed by the just as melodically fine tones of bassist David Ferguson. The band has been regularly likened to Biffy Clyro and Muse but for us and certainly with this start, their sound sits somewhere between Reuben, Sick Puppies, and Foo Fighters in varying degrees across each song.

The equally magnetic Burn follows; bass and guitar again setting an enticing canvas for vocals to spring from and the firm manipulative beats of drummer Billy Freedom to shape. In that inviting and slightly imposing proposal, the track is an animated and unpredictable web of imagination and enterprise. Twists come and go; all delivering fresh adventure and bait while the song fluidly swings between teasing seduction and a full throated roar.

Previous single Celebrity Summer is next, the opening croon of Visser and his guitar a mischievous if emotive spark to the track’s ferocity and urgency as well as another trap of hooks and sonic dexterity. A tenacious slice of vociferous rock ‘n’ roll, the track also hit the spot dead centre before Wires entangled ears and appetite in its contagious aggression lined exploits. From vocals to rhythms, melody to sonic trespass, the song is a formidable and compelling incitement uniting a host of voracious flavours, all traits colouring Yugen from start to finish.

Blacklight Shadow makes its own mellow emotive entrance after the previous blaze, its elevated croon surrounded by sonic flames before settling down again to repeat the rich cycle. That earlier mentioned Australian band certainly comes to mind in the track but again the Black Orchid Empire sound soon establishes its own character with tempestuous power.

As the likes of the muscular and invasively magnetic Pray To The Creature with its weave of senses scorching tendrils and the heart spun atmospheric balladry of Vertigo rise, variety and pleasure go hand in hand. The second of the two wears an alluring country blues scent to its impassioned voice too, more of the broad flavours the album embraces while Mouth Of The Wolf takes essences of hard rock into its seriously catchy prowl.  Emerging as album favourite here, the song nags and jabs, teases and taunts with its controlled but hungry imagination and touch, pretty much living up to the snarling intimation of its title.

A more straightforward proposal comes with Pins And Needles, maybe the album’s least bold song but another which just grips attention and pleases as Toru’s Maze waits to uncage its infectious wares; that grizzled tone of Ferguson’s bass again licking at personal pleasure here though the whole of band and song manages to stoke things up.

Ending with the quite captivating roar of Years, a track erupting from a potently alluring ballad cry into a heart unleashing blaze, Yugen is one thoroughly enjoyable and so often striking release. is there any other reason to check it and Black Orchid Empire out?

Yugen is released May 25th via Long Branch Records; available @ https://blackorchidempire.bandcamp.com/album/yugen

Upcoming live shows:

02.06.2018 UK, London – Camden Rocks Festival

03.06.2018 UK, Glasgow – Broadcast /w Black Map

04.06.2018 UK, Manchester – Gulliver’s /w Black Map

07.06.2018 UK, Donington – Download Festival

22.06.2018 UK, York – Pile Up Festival

http://www.blackorchidempire.com/   https://www.facebook.com/blackorchidempire/    https://twitter.com/orchidempire

Pete RingMaster 24/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Elephant Memoirs – No Pressure No Rush EP

Formed in 2013, British outfit Elephant Memoirs have honed an ear grabbing sound which has grown release by release. New EP, No Pressure No Rush continues that successful trend, offering up six of the band’s most potent and imaginative songs yet.

Hailing from Gateshead, the trio of vocalist/guitarist John Aspinall, bassist Carl Aspinall, and drummer Barry Drew create a thoughtful style of alternative rock which has seen them already compared to the likes of Manic Street Preachers, Biffy Clyro, Placebo, and Queens Of the Stone Age. As No Pressure No Rush suggests, it has not found its unique character yet but there is no denying that each song provides individual and imaginative adventure.

Recorded with Kyle Martin at The Garage Studios in South Shields, No Pressure No Rush opens with Homework. A vocal hush ignites an attention luring pulse of guitar which in turn sparks a composed stroll of swinging rhythms and alluring sonic causticity. The potent vocals of John nestle within the raw flames, the track continuing to almost lumber along. It is an intrigue provoking proposition which certainly had us firmly attentive and animated if not quite as excited as later in the release.

Pink is a vocal repetition of the EP’s title within a sonic trespass. Brief yet suggestive, it leads the imagination into the awaiting pop rock of A Little Metaphor. John is again a strong clean lure against the scuzzy exploits of his guitar, Carl and Barry creating thick rhythmic bait stirring song and appetite alike. As it swings along, it is easy to hear why those earlier mentioned comparisons arise; all adding to the infectious song’s strong appeal. There is muscle and depth to its catchy body though which easily engages the imagination, a richness of textures just as bold within its captivating successor Ether. With drama in every twist and enterprise in every turn, the song grabs best track honours, the fire in its body alone seriously compelling.

The release concludes with firstly Orange, a lead of sonic pulsation and melodic intimation luring ears into the infectious rock ‘n’ roll saunter of Complete Resonsibility. Though it lacks the spark of the preceding pair, the EP closer easily hooks keen attention with its tenacious and arousing character, sparking a bounce in the body to match its own.

It is a fine skilfully accomplished end to a release which is potential stocked and craft laden. Elephant Memoirs is still growing and brewing their sound whilst continuing to create highly pleasurable proposals such as No Pressure No Rush. It is a journey we for one are thoroughly enjoying.

The No Pressure No Rush EP is available now @ https://elephantmemoirs.bandcamp.com/album/no-pressure-no-rush

https://www.facebook.com/elephantmemoirs    https://twitter.com/elephantmemoirs

Pete RingMaster 11/04/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright