Incendiary Arousals: Twenty one Metal/Noise/Rock releases which lit up The RingMaster Review in 2015

2015 was a year of creative savagery and rousing, anthemic glories within metal, rock, and noise driven genres. The RingMaster Review picks out those EPs/albums covered by the site which especially sparked ears and passions.

 

OMNISCIENT_FC_RingMaster Review

Desert Storm – Omniscient
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/01/22/desert-storm-omniscient/

Skindred – Volume
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/10/29/skindred-volume/

William English – Basic Human Error
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/07/01/william-english-basic-human-error/

Arcade Messiah – II
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/11/23/arcade-messiah-ii/

Arcade-Messiah-II-Cover_RingMaster Review

Tirades – Lifetime of Wars
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2016/01/08/tirades-lifetime-of-wars/

Raketkanon – Rktkn#2
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/04/15/raketkanon-rktkn2/

Show of Bedlam – Roont
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/05/08/show-of-bedlam-roont/

XII Boar – Pitworthy
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/03/10/xii-boar-pitworthy/

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Jess & The Ancient Ones – Second Psychedelic Coming: The Aquarius Tapes
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/12/08/jess-the-ancient-ones-second-psychedelic-coming-the-aquarius-tapes/

Shevils – The White Sea
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/11/04/shevils-the-white-sea/

Shattered Skies – The World We Used To Know
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/shattered-skies-the-world-we-used-to-know/

Possessor – Stay Dead
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/04/02/possessor-stay-dead/

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Grumpynators – Wonderland
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/05/21/grumpynators-wonderland/

Shaving The Werewolf – The Pissing Link
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/12/09/shaving-the-werewolf-the-pissing-link/

Sofy Major – Waste
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/10/14/sofy-major-waste/

6:33 – Deadly Scenes
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/01/12/633-deadly-scenes/

art6:33_RingMaster Review

Murdock – Dead Lung
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/04/17/murdock-dead-lung/

Grenouer – Unwanted Today
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/03/20/grenouer-unwanted-today/

Markradonn – The Serpentine Deception
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/12/15/markradonn-the-serpentine-deception/

We’ll Go Machete – Smile Club
https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/08/27/well-go-machete-smile-club/

 

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TesseracT – Polaris

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2015/09/27/tesseract-polaris/

The RingMaster Review 01/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Arcade Messiah – II

John Bassett _RingMaster Review

Though time wise it has been around a year between releases, it feels like a mere breath in sound and relationship between the self-titled debut Arcade Messiah album and its successor II. Continuing in adventure where its acclaimed progressive rock predecessor left off, the new encounter is an emprise of instrumental majesty and incitement reconfirming John Bassett as one of Europe’s finest songwriters, composers, and musicians.

An artist no stranger to garnering thick attention and praise through his band KingBathmat and acoustic offerings under own his name, Bassett’s solo instrumental project Arcade Messiah is another unique proposition from him. Weaving strands of highly varied styles from metal to math rock, stoner to post rock with further diverse and progressive flavours soaked in stirring ambience, the first Arcade Messiah album was a riveting exploration of sound and emotion through individual incitements. Each song worked on the listener’s senses and imagination and as mentioned, II carries on in the same vein but further experiments with textures whilst stretching the fusion of styles and essences to richer and deeper extent. Basset himself neatly sums up II, saying “after the surprise success of last year’s original Arcade Messiah album and after receiving feedback from fans of that album I decided to make a sequel, a continuation of that album, that is hopefully bigger, better, more refined and more dramatic, but which didn’t lose the vibe and atmosphere that was created on the original album“.

Arcade-Messiah-II-Cover_RingMaster Review   II opens with Moon Signal and straight away thoughts drift on the breeze of melodic and atmospheric coaxing. Keys whisper suggestively with their calm caress whilst a guitar emotively entices before sparking a broadening into a thicker and more volatile landscape. The celestial air which painted the start continues to ebb and flow within the spatial yet tightly woven invitation of the track, its journey hinting at vastness and intimacy simultaneously whilst twisting through varied realms as the song explores new avenues of calm, tempestuousness, and imagination.

As expected, Bassett bewitches and provokes ears and emotions with his writing and craft, each piece of music a tapestry of clues and persuasion for the imagination to run with greedily, Red Widow another swift example and success. The second track has a more sinister air to its tone and presence which starting from a sonic mist is soon opening up layers of equally intimidating and seductive expression. The arousal of ear and thought also evolves through many guises within the full umbrella of sonic temptation, a creative travelogue shaping all tracks with the compelling Black Dice Maze a prime example as it glides through sonic intrigue and emotive calm as well as tenacious rock ‘n’ roll and ravenous volatility within its gripping theatre of sound and invention.

The next up Gallows Way seduces from its first touch. Initially it is a surf rock infused ambient hug on the senses, soon spreading out with evocative melodies and reflective sonic shimmers as guitars and keys align with shadowy but restrained rhythms. The skills and invention of Bassett across the instrumentation is a perpetual doorway into the heart of the music, guitars especially descriptive and suggestive across the album but just as potent are the rhythmic contrasts and darker hues that can either ripple or erupt in more forceful intent to temper or enhance the adventure around them. In the fourth song beauty dominates though whereas Fourth Quarter involves rugged scenery of riffs and dynamics within a sonic radiance which immerses the listener with a climate of invitational sultriness and tempting danger. The track is a gripping fascination and rich aural temptation matched in might by the sultry mystique of Via Occulta. The short piece is a maze of shadows, a lure into secrets and hidden depths, and a spellbinding flight even with its brevity.

Across both Read The Sky and Start Missing Everybody, artist and album continue to be a kaleidoscope of aural ingenuity and temptation; each of them evocations which transfix and incite the senses and imagination into unique interpretation of the sonic palette on offer. The closing pair of the two is a melancholic kiss but just as potently fuelled by hope and energy to create something emotionally anthemic.

The CD version also includes the bonus track The Four Horsemen, a striking cover of the Aphrodite’s Child song which was also Arcade Messiah’s contribution to the recently vinyl released compilation album by Fruit De Mer Records called Side Effects. Alone it is worth the purchase of a CD, Bassett giving the track fresh life and suggestiveness, though the cream of II is undoubtedly his original and thrilling tracks.

John Bassett as mentioned is for us one of the UK’s most potent and stirring songwriters, let alone musicians, and II another thick slice of pleasure.

Arcade Messiah II is out now digitally as a name your price download @ https://arcademessiah.bandcamp.com via Stereohead Records and on CD from November 27th.

http://www.arcademessiah.com   https://twitter.com/arcademessiah   https://www.facebook.com/arcademessiah

Pete RingMaster 23/11/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

End Begin – Empire Fools

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As much as a riot of sound and a brawl of instant provocation go down a treat with these ears so do sonic and imagination sparking musical journeys and that is exactly what you get with the impressive debut release from UK band End Begin. A collection of evolving and thought provoking creative episodes in the gripping tale of one man’s journey to save his race, Empire Fools is a captivating and imaginative adventure challenging “listeners to look at humanity’s current ways and to truly question their roles in society.” From start to finish the release grips ears and thoughts, at times more dramatically than in other moments, but constantly provides a richly enticing and unrelentingly enjoyable proposition.

Hailing from Leeds, the progressive rock/post metal quartet emerged in 2010 and since then has bred a strong and loyal local following which with the release of Empire Fools threatens to spread much further afield and we suggest swiftly. Live the band has become an acclaimed part of the northern underground circuit and taken in shows with the likes of Thine and Pteroglyph along the way. Produced by guitarist David J. Freeman with the rest of the band, Empire Fools has be a proposition the band has taken its time over, a creative incitement that has been intensely sculpted and honed until finding the striking depth and persuasion of sound which embraces ears and immerses the imagination from opener Tey’sha onwards.

The first track emerges from a sonic fuelled atmosphere of almost intimidating suggestiveness, the portentous air blossoming into a tempest of hearty riffs and antagonistic rhythms. The guitar of Freeman is as imposing as it is fiery whilst the bass of Rory Smith adds a dark menace which complements the pungent strikes of drummer Dominic Turton and contrasts the emerging expressive melodic enterprise of the track perfectly. Soon seemingly established, the direction of sound suddenly swerves on ears and slips into a post rock apocalyptic calm, bass and guitar again a contrasting but united design of imagination and craft. This shadowed peace welcomes the excellent voice of Dave Rangel, his warm and expressive tones unveiling the narrative whilst backed well by the voice of Freeman. We mentioned Pteroglyph earlier and there is a definite similarity in structure and evocative nature to the song, and indeed album, to the project of Jimmy MacGregor, though in sound they stand apart. The track continues to twist and shift in creativity and character throughout, offering a persistently absorbing and exciting start to the album.

An opening bubbling of riffs and guitar endeavour ensures the start of Missionary has an instant grip on ears and imagination next, a hold tightening as again impressive vocals and a darker rhythmic side joins the provocative canvas of emotion and sound. Bursts of impassioned and technical intensity and moments of creative and vocal intimacy are fused and entangled across the song, their unity helping make the encounter an immediately alluring proposal though, as its predecessor and the rest of the album, holding more in its depths which only subsequent flights through the release begin to reveal.

     Empire Fools is definitely an album which flourishes and strengthens over a wealth of listens. There is no denying that it makes a strong first persuasion but as shown again in Lice, it only grows to a greater and more impressive stature given increasing time and attention. The third track has a heavier more volatile metallic substance to its flurries and perpetual prowl, epitomised by the earthy and sinister tone of the bass. Freeman’s guitar finds a great inflamed and acidic quality to its most compelling endeavour yet, whilst vocally Rangel more than solid in his main delivery brings great drama and adventure with additional twists and turns. The track is exceptional, an early big favourite and pinnacle in the release though straight away backed resourcefully by, after the beauty soaked ambience of the brief instrumental After Martyrdom, the progressive and melodic seducing of Numbers. Ten minutes long, the journey begins in a mellow kiss of voice and sonic charm subsequently brewing up more stormy scenery through bass and drums for the revelation of the lyrical adventure. In theme song and album is as rich and immersive as the sounds and enjoyable also needs many plays to fully piece together and explore.

At times there is an essence of UK band An Entire Legion to the End Begin sound across the album and indeed KingBathmat certainly to this track, nothing thick but a regular and potent coincidental scent which only adds to the riveting temptation. Trium Virum is another offering a similar suggestiveness though its beginning is more akin to the Arcade Messiah side of the creativity of KingBathmat’s John Bassett. The song is a smouldering and sultry yet reserved wash over the senses, ripe in sonic and melodic flames courtesy of Freeman with an almost predatory yearning care of Smith’s tantalising basslines. Fair to say it is another big highlight of the ever impressing encounter.

Rangel’s voice at times has a task to stand equal to the striking and dramatic enterprise elsewhere, but even without any real snarl or aggression to take them on he constantly stands by their side in potency and clarity, the production offering a strong base which he exploits perfectly as evidenced once more in the epic closing track. Another imagination inciting instrumental comes first; Remnants a tapestry of sonic clues for thought to run with before another extensive outing in Becoming brings the album to a stirring end. A dark start is driven by a vocal menacing before slipping into an even more tempestuous and agitated, almost capricious landscape with the stunning enterprise of Turton especially shining. It is a creative emprise though with just as potent warm colours and intimidating hues to its presence, crafting an engrossing and exhilarating offering for ears and psyche to take on. Again it is a song needing numerous visits to fully explore and appreciate its growth into the album’s most impressive track, but certainly it has body and emotions lit from its first flight too.

     Empire Fools just grows and lures the passions into greedier satisfaction with every listen, increasing the evidence that it and End Begin is a must investigation for all progressive rock and metal fans. It is hard to imagine there being many debuts making a bigger impact within those genres this year and deserves keen attention.

Empire Fools is out now via https://endbegin.bandcamp.com/

It is also available as an 8GB wafer USB containing extensive material such as guitar tabs, a digital booklet, a full digital painting, and a special featurette from the studio. For more info…

http://www.endbeginband.net/ https://www.facebook.com/endbeginband

Upcoming live dates …

Wed 29th May The Washington, Sheffield, UK

Fri 8th May The Snooty Fox, Wakefield, UK

Fri 22nd May Parish, Huddersfield, UK

Sat 23rd May Chameleon Arts Café, Nottingham, UK

Sat 22nd Aug Lincoln Imp, Scunthorpe, UK

RingMaster 19/04/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

The Top Twenty Metal/Rock releases which most excited The RingMaster Review in 2014

In a year of some seriously and gloriously anthemic, not forgetting creatively inspiring releases The RingMaster Review picks out twenty metal and heavy rock releases covered by the site which gave us that extra tingle of excitement in 2014.

 

EYE_CoverArt_Kallisti

01. Empty Yard Experiment – Kallisti

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/09/29/empty-yard-experiment-kallisti/

02. Escapethecult – All You want To

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/08/19/escape-the-cult-all-you-need-to/

03. The House Of Capricorn – Morning Star Rise

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/12/02/the-house-of-capricorn-morning-star-rise/

04. Hollow – Mordrake

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/hollow-mordrake/

05. Voyager – V

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/06/03/voyager-v/

06. Nexilva – Eschatologies

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/04/08/nexilva-eschatologies/

Arcade Messiah Album Cover

07. Arcade Messiah – Arcade Messiah

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/11/25/arcade-messiah-self-titled/

08. We All Die (Laughing) – Thoughtscanning

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/01/14/we-all-die-laughing-thoughtscanning/

09. Goatcraft – The Blasphemer

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/03/06/goatcraft-the-blasphemer/

10. Destrage – Are You Kidding Me? No

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/03/06/destrage-are-you-kidding-me-no/

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11. Void of Kings – Stand Against The Storm

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/12/23/void-of-kings-stand-against-the-storm/

12. No Sin Evades His Gaze – Age of Sedation

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/no-sin-evades-his-gaze-age-of-sedation/

13. Dioramic – Supra

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/09/15/dioramic-supra/

pigeon lake

14. Pigeon Lake – Tales of a Madman

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/pigeon-lake-tales-of-a-madman/

15. Imbroglio – The Struggle in Pursuit

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/04/16/imbroglio-the-struggle-in-pursuit/

16. ICOSA – The Skies are Ours

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/07/25/icosa-the-skies-are-ours-ep/

17. Mars Red Sky – Stranded In Arcadia

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/04/29/mars-red-sky-stranded-in-arcadia/

18. Anti Clone – Hands Sewn Together

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/08/25/anti-clone-hands-sewn-together/

jwb walkingunderwaterpt2

19. Johnny Wore Black – Walking Under water Parts 1 & 2

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/02/27/johnny-wore-black-walking-underwater/

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/11/13/johnny-wore-black-walking-underwater-pt-2/

20. The Body Politic – Egressor

https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2014/09/17/the-body-politic-egressor/

Arcade Messiah – Self Titled

John Bassett Promo 3

The creativity of UK musician John Bassett is a feverish kaleidoscope of colour, invention, and innovative exploration. He has proven it time and time again for over a decade, releasing eight increasingly impressive and attention grabbing albums either as KingBathmat or his own name. The last couple of years or so has seen a richer recognition of his craft and expansive musical imagination, the last two critically acclaimed KingBathmat albums Truth Button and Overcoming The Monster, the latter in 2013, pushing he and the band to the fore of progressive metal/rock whilst his debut acoustic album Unearth earlier this year, reinforced his reputation and ability to explore varied and deeply immersive structures and landscapes. Now the Hastings based multi-instrumentalist, singer songwriter, and producer returns with new solo project Arcade Messiah, a vehicle for his instrumental emprises which as shown by its self-titled debut album, are set to also inflame for ears and imagination.

Merging the boldest essences of styles such as metal, stoner, doom, prog, and math rock within constantly revealing canvases of post rock, Bassett and album provide gripping soundscapes for thoughts to cast their own explorations within and for emotions to colour with their own adventures. The musician talking about the project and album commented that “after writing and producing numerous KingBathmat albums and more recently the acoustic solo album Unearth, I decided I wanted to create my first instrumental album, and I wanted it to be set, audibly and visually in a dark, bleak apocalyptic aura of despair and anger. I wanted to focus on enormous riffs and sorrowful yet powerful musical refrains and place them within a terrain of unusual time signatures interspersed by moments of psychedelic calm.” It is an aim successfully achieved but even more an endeavour sculpting one of the essential moments of the year.

Instrumental albums do not always sink in easily with us, a demand for something maybe indefinable but persistent in igniting body and imagination a persistent requirement which the Arcade Messiah Album Covershowing off of supreme technical skill cannot satisfy. In Arcane Messiah there is nothing but that aural and inventive stimulation, from opening track Sun Exile the album a mouth-watering and rigorously compelling provocation for senses and unravelling gests in the imagination. From the first stirring and virulent call of guitar, album and opener becomes a potent weave of sound and aural suggestion, especially as a hypnotic canter of rhythms and fiery melodies join the emerging sonic picture soon after. Twists in time and invention are as fascinating as the heated creative climate of the track, its increasingly steamy breath and dark expression seductive and intimidating sparking a portentous Icarus like warning in thoughts.

The following Your Best Line Of Defence Is Obscurity slips in on a gentle breeze of sonic air and melodic caressing, though again it is a coaxing lined with dark bass shadows and prowling beats. The imagination is lured into the depths of the heavy smoulder of the piece with ease, thoughts of a lonely existence within the turmoil of predatory but deceptively welcoming emotive scenery emerging. Bassett’s guitar work is riveting, every groove and scorched melody inescapable incitement, but to be fair that applies to drums and bass through to simply the immersing imposing atmospheres conjured. Thoughts are instantly embraced and sparked by the primal and elegant nature of the music, a common factor across the album and in evidence with Traumascope straight after. Its initial post rock ambience is lined with a funk kissed bassline and lively beats from the drums, a union which hangs around before parting its mist for the voracious tide of riffs, which in turn lead to and compliment a stoner-esque flaming to the emerging tempest of emotional reflection and sonic rapacity. The track is a mesmeric blaze which never gets out of hand but leaves its dramatic imprint on senses and imagination with burning contagion.

Aftermath is a sobering haunting after the previous furnaces of sound and inventive intensity, a delicious feast of invasive melodies and bracing elegance which comes with sinister shadowing and anguished reflections. It also has an ethereal touch to its climate but in many ways is just the calm before or within the storm, its peace the bridge to the inventive alchemy of Everybody Eating Everyone Else. The track is scintillating; its initial also haunted passage the gateway into an antagonistic yet infectiously magnetic terrain of abrasing riffs and sonic temptation. There is a feeling of safety within turbulent and aggressive times or landscapes to the song, the guitars providing guidance through fiercely provocative exploits sculpted by rhythms and Bassett’s riff led raw sonic energy. Though musically it is different, there is a feel of early Killing Joke to the structure and tension of this and many tracks, an unrelenting persuasion which is wonderfully nagging at the heart of the ferociously inventive mergers of light and dark.

Steamy stoner spirals of sound open up The Most Popular Form Of Escape next, their acidic tones and spicing bringing rich hues to the climatic broadening of the song’s thick web of flavour and enterprise. Folkish elements are as prevalent in the piece as progressive endeavour and a sterner metallic tenacity, it all creating another unpredictable fascination for ears to bask in, the imagination to sculpt with, and appetite to devour greedily. Its enthralling waltz makes way for the closing Roman Resolution, itself an aural teleidoscope with wide reflective views and internal emotive majesty. An epic cruise through ever evolving sonic experimentation and poetic melodies, it brings a sensational release to a breath-taking close.

After the combined brilliance of Overcoming The Monster and Unearth, there was a small wonder where Bassett went from there. Where he ventured was into a creative maelstrom of sublime ingenuity with a technical and instinctive invention which has no need to indulge in over the top flourishes and pretension as it steals thoughts and passions. Arcade Messiah presents instrumental music which is organic and bracing whilst Bassett might just have put a stranglehold on best of year charts come the end of next month.

Arcade Messiah is available as a name your price digital version and on CD now via Stereohead Records @ https://arcademessiah.bandcamp.com

http://www.arcademessiah.com/

http://www.johnbassettmusic.com

RingMaster 25/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://audioburger247.webs.com/