Battalion Zośka – Self Titled

Like all instinctive punk fans seventies punk and eighties hardcore will always fuel the passions no matter what major moments which have and will continue to follow that defining moment in time. There is no doubting that it is the same for Philadelphia hailing Battalion Zośka; all the evidence raising and roaring aggressive irritation within the band’s self-titled debut album. But there is no mistaking that its 13 slices of sonic and defiant belligerence are far more than echoes of inspirations and other’s glories. The album is a fresh breath and striking protagonist embracing the seeds which fired up us all decades past.

Formed in 2018, Battalion Zośka features members of hardcore punk outfits Violent Society and Combat Crisis and their sound provides a politically charged trespass as aggressively catchy as it is emotionally dissonant. Rhythms unapologetically bite as riffs harass and curse alongside similarly tetchy vocals, the hooks and enterprise conjured just as fractious and irresistible within one magnificent, rousing debut.

The quintet of Pat, Jim, Johnny, Jonas, and Milo set down the tone and character of the album from its first breath, opener A Country Divided rhythmically teasing attention before being entwined in alluring wires of guitar. The song soon hits its stride, threat and disobedience lining every note and subsequent syllable as inbred catchiness equally shapes its rousing incitement. With a great whiff of Angelic Upstarts meets The Lurkers to it and featuring the first of two guest appearance from Black Flag/ Misfits guitarist Dez Cadena, the track lone tells you all you need to know about the band’s sound and album, both swiftly compelling assaults.

Arm Everyone follows bringing an even thicker dissent and trespass to the senses; its hardcore breeding hungry and ill-tempered in its uprising while the album’s title track thrusts forward with rampant muscle and uncompromising resistance as an Exploited meets UK Subs hued subversion arouses. It is fair to say that together the three tracks had ears and appetite enslaved but the third truly sealed the deal.

Next up, Heather was no light weight in that union either, its strands of melodic wiring a delicious itch in the rich infectious nagging of the track. The song brings another guest to the release in the ever potent craft of Neil Newton, the Angelic Upstarts guitarist also giving fiercer flaming to Moral Coward two encounters later, that song a dirtily cantankerous seventies ripe invasion. In between the equally outstanding Island of the Lost Souls stamped its commanding authority on ears, every rhythmic swing an enticing bitch slap and chord a caustic tempting as it builds towards a chorus which just had body and throat bounding forward.

The subsequent assails of Oi! By Numbers and Sold & Bought did nothing to lessen the album’s grip; the first, an undisguised attack within a familiar yet unique sonic pillory with its successor a virulent Crisis-esque transgression. Each simply pummelled the spot before being rapaciously matched by the esurient assault and arousing of 80’s Kid, the song sharing the second ear grabbing appearance of Cadena.

A pop punk essence helps blossom even greater temptation within Once Again, its untamed Vibrators meets Adicts breeding an anthemic tonic for the spirit while the equally galvanic rallying of No More and Scum of the Streets with its feral indeed predacious stalking and sonic hounding only accentuated the impressive and inspiring body and disagreement of the album.

Completed by the carousing punk ‘n’ roll of The Beer Song, the Battalion Zośka album is simply punk rock at its most honest, uncomplicated yet imaginatively bred best. Expect to hear a lot more of the band as once its full-length stirs up a punk uprising of attention and lusty support they will have little choice but to submit to demand.

The Battalion Zośka album is released this June via Violated Records; available at http://www.violatedrecords.com/ and https://battalionzoska.bandcamp.com/album/battalion-zo-ka

https://www.facebook.com/Battalionzoska/

Pete RingMaster 03/06/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Parasitic Twins/ The Carnival Rejects – The Parasitic Rejects EP

The Parasitic Rejects EP sees the coming together of two of the UK’s most striking ear shredding prospects in a compelling trespass of a split release. On one side preying on the senses is York hailing crust/hardcore punks The Carnival Rejects and on the other the doom punk ferocity that is Parasitic Twins. Together they create a feral proposition as fierce and intimidating as it is captivatingly thrilling.

Consisting of guitarist/vocalist Jamie Robertson, bassist/vocalist James Briggs, and drummer Fi Rowntree, The Carnival Rejects offer up three punk intrusions for their part in The Parasitic Rejects EP. Disengage is first, its gentle melodic lead deceitfully concealing the antagonistically contagious punk flurry to follow. Happily grabbing a pop punk catchiness to its irritable breast, the song romps and stomps as it shares a skilfully woven holler of melodic and sonic tempestuousness.

Seize Control is their second incitement and immediately worms under the skin with its contagious belligerence and rousing incitement where biting beats unite with grumbling bass as the guitar wraps its caustic yet magnetic wires around the senses, vocals only accentuating the song’s virulence.

The Carnival Rejects finish their contribution with To The Bone, two minutes of feral punk rock with a potent Angelic Upstarts meets Discharge snarl to its causticity.  United, all three tracks prove punk rock is as irritable and rousing as ever, a declaration just as ripe across the trio of intrusions alongside them.

Still reaping attention and acclaim through their debut EP of less than a year ago, All That’s Left To Do Now Is Sleep With Each Other, Hull’s Parasitic Twins reinforce their reputation as one fearsome and captivating proposition with their part in the EP. The duo of vocalist/guitarist Max Watt and drummer Dom Smith unleash senses molesting swarms of doom, punk, and grindcore manipulated into singular uncompromising furies. The first on the EP rises up as Autopsy, the track immediately scalding ears before its inherent rock ‘n’ roll instincts infiltrate its equally blossoming sonic toxicity. Vocals similarly share no respect whilst inciting ears and appetite, metal bred throes adding to its salacious predatory prowl.

Feel Nothing similarly devoured and sparked the senses, rhythms pummelling with determined predation as raw grooves entangle song and listener alike. As its predecessor there is something akin to a corroded blend of Napalm Death and Pig Destroyer to the track though this only seems to inspire its own individual dissonance.

The pair completes their contribution with a cover of the Babylon Zoo classic, Spaceman. Released a handful of weeks back as a single with all proceeds donated to The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), the track finds itself dirt clad and infested with the cacophonous tension and disharmony which marked their well-received EP. Even so it manages to retain its catchiness even as it despoils the senses to bring one very easy to recommend release to a rousing close.

The Parasitic Rejects EP is out in association with Man Demolish Records @ https://mandemolishrecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-parasitic-rejects

https://www.facebook.com/thecarnivalrejects/   https://www.facebook.com/ParasiticTwinsBand/

Pete RingMaster 30/05/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Casual Nausea – Demons

It has been a long wait for fans of Casual Nausea to get the chance to devour a first album from the Ipswich spawned quintet which formed in 2012 but time fully rewarded with what is destined to be one of the year’s finest, most irresistibly enjoyable moments. Demons is a carnival of punk rock embracing every angle of the genre imagined whilst getting its rabid teeth into the ills of the world. Street and crust punk unites with hardcore, pop, and old school punk across its belligerently devilish stomp and there is still room for plenty of other ear gripping flavours to deviously corrupt and manipulate in one unruly hook strapped triumph of a release.

Demons unleashes 19 tracks with dirty claws into themes such as “working pointless jobs and general pressures of society along with a few uplifting tunes celebrating the DIY punk scene” alongside equally rousing moments when the band is taking the piss out of us and themselves with relish. Maybe surprisingly there are no fillers in that tenacious mass of songs only prize punk agitation in its feral glory.

The album lustily launches at the listener with Vote, handclaps luring in listener and band as their voices arouse attention. It is a 3 barrel vocal machine gun led by the twin bore attack of Simon and Zoe but equally driven by the fierce tones of Ed; anxiety, anger and mischief colluding in every word shoved through ears from the opening breath of this opener to the albums final tirade. The latter’s guitar is not tardy in freeing up scurrilous riffs either, his hooks just as incisive here and thereon in. It is an outstanding start more than matched by the boisterous offensive of Cockroaches, the senses scything swings of drummer Shawn contagiously lethal as Matt’s bass magnetically groans with every throbbing line escaping its catchy stroppiness.

DIY or Die canters in next, an Angelic Upstarts scenting coating Ed’s hook spun coaxing before again the great vocal mix of the band descends on body rousing rhythms. Its proud declaration had the appetite drooling before letting the rapid incitement of Move On work on truculently animated limbs, fists, and vocal chords; its uncompromising spirit swiftly matched within the unapologetically quarrelsome Empty Rewards. Both of the latter tracks go for the jugular with a feisty intent, contagion fuelling each with the second of the two pop punk infested.

One minute of hostile hardcore scrapping under the guise of Another Way is next before Terminator leaps from its cowpunk teasing to harass and ignite participation with its vocal and continued country punk revelry; a pair of tracks which mercilessly got under the skin just as easily as Fuck Up in turn had the throat zealously ranting at the world. Maybe a song which did not quite rise up to the lofty heights of its predecessors there was still no escaping its forceful touch and incitement or the pleasure in the ready submission given.

The album’s title track bullies and seduces with a great blend of resolute aggression and melodic tempting, its virulent catchiness enslaving with the unity of the threesome’s vocal contrasts emulating the texturing of sounds increasingly invigorating the track.

It is hard to pick a best track within Demons but Blood In The Oil is a permanent favourite, its ska/ reggae nurtured stroll irresistible and a hue of The Members delicious while Predator swiped its fair share of the passions with its gypsy punk shaped antics; both tracks quickly harried for matching plaudits by the furious venom spilling assault of Corruption and indeed Defective with its touch in cheek self-deprecation to a pop swinging punk soundtrack.

As suggested there is no weak moment within Demons, just an ordering of favourites, Gonna Blow and Til The Day I Die cementing that success with their respective anarcho punk bruising and old school soaked defiance steeled assertion. Similarly Assembly Lines and Misery added further proof, the song another thick favourite with its raucous dexterity and manipulative prowess bringing hints of bands like 999 and Eater to mind within its more hardcore bred holler.

Attention is just as tightly gripped and enjoyment uncaged across the album’s final trio of tracks; Zombie niggling away with a devious hook throughout and Pay Your Sins Away simply lighting up the passions as Casual Nausea stomp like Les Négresses Vertes inspired guttersnipes. Built To Break finally brings things to a close with a punk fury which just epitomises the character, prowess, and persuasion of band and sound.

Actually show patience and one more treat emerges from the silence in the shape of an acoustic version of Blood In The Oil, a final pleasure to cap what is a quite glorious album. Punk continually gives us major moments to devour and the manic indeed deranged Demons is one real feast to get rabid teeth into.

Demons is out now via TNS Records; available @ https://casualnausea.bigcartel.com/ https://www.tnsrecords.co.uk/shop/tns-releases/pre-order/casual-nausea-demons/ or https://tnsrecords.bandcamp.com/album/demons-2

https://www.facebook.com/casualnausea

 Pete RingMaster 01/05/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Headsticks – Kept In The Dark

If packaging decided best of year choices UK quartet Headsticks will have top honour sealed with new album Kept In The Dark. The surround to its music is simply glorious, easily the best art and presentation seen in many a year by these hungry eyes and embracing music just as mouth-watering it all makes for one irresistibly thrilling offering.

Checking out their previous album, Feather and Flame, three years back we suggested that Headsticks had confirmed themselves “as one of Britain’s most irresistible and essential punk ‘n’ roll adventures.” Well, while assuring you that nothing has changed, the band has revealed that previous success was just the beginning of bigger things; bold triumphs now presented by its successor. Parading their folk ‘n’ punk instinctive sound in all its glory, the new release is Headsticks at their boldest and most boisterous but equally with its richer kaleidoscope of styles and flavours it has equally nurtured its most defined character and individual adventure yet for the biggest pleasure.

Emerging late 2012, Stoke on Trent hailing Headsticks had built and earned a potent reputation through a rousing live presence and acclaimed debut album Muster in 2014; success only accelerated by the following Feather and Flame. That growth will only be escalated again by Kept In The Dark; the band’s finest moment to date as their socially and politically charged songs relish another striking spurt in diversity, imagination, and dramatic adventure.

The new release opens its bumper load of songs, with no filler in sight, with When. From its first breath, the punk ferocity and infectious incursion of the track gripped ears with vocalist Andrew Tranter masterfully steering the rousing trespass. Devious hooks and manipulative rhythms do their persuasive deeds with relish within a song which has echoes of bands such as The Vibrators and Angelic Upstarts to it.

The impressive start is immediately matched by I Love You and its ska natured saunter. As mentioned variety in the Headsticks sound is enjoyably no new thing but it is certainly at its most eager, bold, and fluidly unpredictable within Kept In The Dark. With a Ruts-esque lilt to its stroll, the song had little trouble in getting under the skin and luring participation from body and voice before Peace Or War erupts in a roar of punk ‘n’ roll carousing where the forceful but virulent swings of drummer Tom Carter collude hungrily with the brooding tones of Nick Bayes’ bass as the wiry melodic tendrils of guitar from Steven Dunn align with his rapacious riffs.

The following pair of Cynical and Mushrooms reinforce the album’s instant adventure and prowess; the first a seducing of acoustic punk with irritation fuelling its breath and its successor a mischievous ska pop swinging incitement easily leading hips and vocal chords into action. Both easily got under the skin but still are eclipsed by the superb Mr ‘I’m Alright Jack’. Bred on classic fifties rock ‘n roll, the track is a lure of swerving rhythmic hips and melody enriched rockabilly chords around riveting vocal incitement.

Through the rock driven reflection of My Own War, an easily relatable declaration, and It’s a Matter of Time with its equally melancholic intimacy and Americana twang, enjoyment only built while the hard rock flavouring of Smoke and Mirrors proceeded to add further diversity to Kept In The Dark.

Both aspects continued to blossom as classic metal and street poetry respectively shape the temptation and strength of What If They’re Right and Out of Fashion before Family Tree pounced on social and political unfairness and exploitation upon a reggae borne canter and All of the Trees captivated with its acoustic/punk rock dexterity.

The final trio of The Song For Songs Sake, When the Sun Turns Black, and Baboon Shepherd close the album out as masterfully as it began. The first is a contagion of folk rock irresistible to ear and body, the second a compelling apocalyptic rumble of voice and insinuation; each as magnetic as the other leaving the third to sign off the album with its eleven minute dub infused homage to the career and life of South African footballer Sam Shabangu and the aligning times and experiences of Tranter. It is a track which brings grin and reflection amidst nostalgia across a lengthy landscape which never outstays its welcome.

Headsticks continue to be one mightily engrossing and thrilling proposition which, as Kept In The Dark proves, just get better and better.

Kept In The Dark is out now via STP Records; available @ http://www.headsticks.co.uk/shop.html  or http://www.stprecords.co.uk/page2.htm and other online stores.

http://www.headsticks.co.uk   https://www.facebook.com/headsticksmusic   https://twitter.com/HeadsticksMusic

Pete RingMaster 05/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

System Of Hate -There Is No Madness Here

The world may be on a downward spiral to destruction guided by the corruption of humanity but it is also spawning some glorious reactions along the way and maybe none as thrilling as the second album from UK outfit System Of Hate. Part commentary, part serenade to apocalyptic horizons, There Is No Madness Here is a tenebrific tempting bred from the united breaths of punk rock and post punk, and simply one of 2018’s finest moments.

Released via Louder Than War Records a few weeks back and the successor to the band’s well-received 2016 debut, Unhallowed Ground, the ferociously compelling There Is No Madness Here is an honestly snarling, venomous contagion of sound and observation. As with their first full-length, the Barnsley hailing band has linked up with producer Matt Ellis for their latest meshuga of blackened intimation and dark punk enterprise. It roars with inescapable uniqueness yet keenly embraces the hues of bands such as Killing Joke, Angelic Upstarts, Leitmotiv, and Theatre Of Hate for a proposal as psychotically clamorous as it is skilfully woven.

There Is No Madness Here opens up with its title track, instantly enticing with a wiry guitar lure before slipping into a lively predacious prowl eagerly twisting and turning with every passing moment. Equally Dave Sutcliffe’s vocals stalk ears with lyrical suggestion as an anthemic breath fuels the whole sonic web in a proposition virtually impossible to resist participating in.

That irresistibility is an on-going tempting across the album as proven by the following pair of Black Fire and We Who Walk With God. The first is similarly portentous but with an infectious swing which lines its dark inference. The sonic lattice of Patrick Crawford’s guitar is wrapped in the similarly suggestive lure of keys cast by Martin Roberts, both aligned to the dark pulsation of esurient rhythms sprung by bassist Shaun O’Neill and drummer Carl Gulliford with vocals a raw angst lined narrative to the black infestation. The second presented an even darker and heavier trespass as it unsettled and ensnared the senses. Both tracks, as indeed all across the release, are loaded with appetite entangling hooks and acerbic melodies creating an array of temptations which needed little time to get under the skin.

In The Shadow Of The Cross teases and nags as it rises to its feet next, every tendril of guitar and caress of keys a blend of danger and enticement until the track breaks into a just as magnetic ravening canter. There is a great touch of Sex Gang Children meets 1919 to the track while there is something of an Adicts hue to the punk bred Your God Is Dead. Even so, System Of Hate’s sound is strictly individual and as virally rabid here as in the subsequent caliginous joys of Tears Of Blood, with its wolfish grooves and toxic air, and in turn within the abrasive and bracing sonic plague that is Resurrected.

The latter has the senses feeling flailed and energised; its defiance and animosity a rousing incitement matched in its own particular way driving by the raucously anthemic Rising and its fiery winds. If its predecessor was an announcement of intent, this track is the threat in full holler and again a song impossible not to get embroiled in.

The album concludes with firstly Ill Are The Cursed, a calmer melodically alluring but no less imposing and rousing proposal and finally the track System Of Hate. The closer harries and taunts ears with its sonic exploits whilst seducing with its acidic melodies and raw siren-esque vocal harmonies. It is a last incursion of sound and adventure which sums up the album’s heart and the band’s music and imagination perfectly as indeed the thrilling contagion of each aspect.

We have come to the album’s apocalypse later than others but join the call that There Is No Madness Here is and will be as relevant to the world and humanity’s decay as to post punk and punk ‘n’ roll for years to come.

There Is No Madness Here is out now via Louder Than War Records.

http://www.systemofhate.com/    https://www.facebook.com/systemofhate/   https://twitter.com/systemofhateuk

Pete RingMaster 04/01/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Felons – Violent Society

Offering up three short bruising shocks to the system, Violent Society is the new EP from UK quartet Felons; an encounter providing all the reasons why punk rock still gets our juices going like no other genre.

Southend based Felons have a sound which scowls like a mix of Crass, Angelic Upstarts, and The Varukers. It is old school hardcore punk bred but anything other than a dated trespass on ears and enterprise. Already this year the foursome of vocalist Jay, guitarist Josh, Bassist Lew, and drummer Pike have uncaged their debut EP, Creeps; an encounter receiving strong support and plaudits. Violent Society springs another threesome of attitude driven trespasses which will surely follow suit in success and in taking Felons to a broader and eager landscape of attention.

Who’s In Debt To Who? opens up the Dan Bazan recorded and produced EP, the track following its initial welcoming hook with a furious holler of middle finger raised defiance and observation as imposingly infectious as it is unapologetically irritable. Whipping the imagination back to the late seventies/early eighties whilst stirring up its own modern individuality, the track effortlessly incited inner dissent whilst stirring an ever eager punk appetite with its irreverent exploits.

The following Pacing offers up a mere 47 seconds of sonic subversion but  a fleeting time as untamed as it is instinctively manipulative and all infernal goodness. The dual vocal attack inflames an already organic dissonance, a combination spewing fractious incitement within an unbridled tetchy attack which needed little time, which is lucky considering the length of the trespass, to ignite ears and appetite.

The release closes with its title track; Violent Society slowly, in comparison to its predecessor, enticing ears with a bass grumble as the guitar flirts from time to time before breaking into a deliciously nagging stroll with a Disorder-esque glare to its choleric breath. In no time it announced itself as the best of three irresistible infestations of sound and attitude, reinforcing its claim by the second

Violent Society is our introduction to Felons and, with hindsight and a just as enriching meeting with its predecessor to support its declaration, installs its creators as another of punk’s new exciting perpetrators giving reason as to why the genre can still incite and arouse like it did way back.

Violent Society is available now @ https://felonspunx.bandcamp.com/releases as a name your price digital release and on CD.

https://www.facebook.com/felonsband

Pete RingMaster 14/11/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Bitter Grounds – Two Sides of Hope

Hailing from Utrecht, Bitter Grounds is a Dutch quartet that has a sound which could be best described as Hagfish meets The Vox Dolomites wrapped in the heart and breath of Bad Religion and Dropkick Murphys. But as swiftly evidenced within new album, Two Sides of Hope, it is a proposition with a bold and individual character that just demands keen attention.

Entangling the attitude and aggression of punk with the instinctive and raw attributes of ska, Bitter Grounds first stoked potent attention with their 2016 debut album Hollowlands. It emulated local support and praise across a broader landscape which now its successor should only strongly expand upon. Since that first release, the band has played numerous shows across Europe alongside the likes of The Real McKenzies and The Interrupters and earned plaudits for their performances at festivals such as like Punk Rock Holiday and Nice ‘n’ Sleazy. It is easy to suspect that Two Sides of Hope will spark an even bigger demand and time for Bitter Grounds such its stirring and virulent nature

As with its predecessor, the new album was recorded with engineer and producer Menno Bakker and immediately gets down to business with opener Lost. Instantly a spicy groove entangles senses rapping beats, highly catchy bait simply reinforced by bass, riffs and in turn boisterous vocals. The infectious attributes of the band’s sound and enterprise is as swiftly evident, coursing song and appetite with a viral quality whipping up eager participation. There is a familiarity to the track yet as with the band’s sound overall, it is a welcoming hue to something wholly individual.

The following Two Sides (of Hope) has a just as catchy lilt and swing to its tenacious swing shaped by a more intensive attitude. There is a defiant edge to every twist and turn, a rousing wind fuelling its incitement as the track swiftly got under the skin; a success more than matched by the contagious antics of Let Me See Now. Another which has a sense of an old friend returning with a new identity and intent, the song quickly had hips and feet doing its bidding as melodic and imaginative endeavour nurtured its brief but highly manipulative exploits.

As with its predecessor, the ska side of the band’s sound fuels next up Bad Dreams; its gait alone enticing physical involvement while the band’s potent dual vocal temptation works away on ears side by side with the jangle of guitar and the moodier stroll of the bass. Instinctively Bitter Grounds seem to conjure hooks and grooves which know what gets the juices going, My Time another addictive example with its melodic revelry and vocal dynamics.

Through the relatively calmer but just as infectious and mischievously woven Faded and the raucous holler of Let Them Talk, the album just reinforces its temptation and the band the creative dexterity of their songwriting and flavour rich music, the latter sparking thoughts that if Angelic Upstarts had embraced ska in their sound way back it would have been something akin to this inescapable trespass.

The album concludes with firstly Seven Nights, a Rancid scented stomp needing mere seconds to command limb and spirit, and finally the punk ‘n’ roll defiance of FML. With compelling rhythms battering the senses and riffs careering through ears as vocals spew attitude, the track is a tenacious and rousing end to one outstanding release.

From first breath to last, Two Sides of Hope hits the punk greedy spot, hungrily proving itself one of the best punk indeed rock ‘n’ roll albums of 2018.

Two Sides of Hope is out now, available @ https://bittergrounds.bandcamp.com/

http://bittergrounds.nl/   https://www.facebook.com/BitterGroundsBand/

 Pete RingMaster 16/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright