Concrete Lung – Tolerance & Dependency

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If fans of Concrete Lung thought their uncompromising sound could not get any more corrosive and emotionally destructive then new EP Tolerance & Dependency is going to leave them shell-shocked and blissful. The six track provocation is a scourge of sonic voracity and imaginative violation, the duo of Ed Oxime (vocals/guitars) and William Riever (bass) finding new imagination and despair in their creativity and music to explore. As ever a Concrete Lung encounter is not for the faint hearted but for a tempest of industrial grindcore and death metal veined hardcore, it is pure ruinous manna.

Since signing with independent label Armalyte Records in 2010, a year also seeing the Manchester, UK hailing band’s debut EP Waste Of Flesh, Concrete Lung swiftly garnered critical and fan acclaim with their Ministry, Skinny Puppy, and early Pitchshifter inspired provocation. Live too the band only impressed and ignited the passions, the sharing of stages with the likes of The Young Gods, Funker Vogt, Leæther Strip, Grendel, Agonoize, and Front Line Assembly gracing their first few years. First album Versions Of Hell in 2011 reinforced and accelerated the band’s emerging presence whilst the Die Dreaming single the following year, and the Subtract Nerve in 2013 put the band under a fiercer spotlight and into the nightmares of an increasing fan base. As suggested, Tolerance & Dependency is the band corrupting another level in their sound and extreme aural hostilities generally, a continuation of its predecessor in theme and intent but reaching into the darkest corners of their rage, animosity, and merciless creativity.

Though both its members are now located wide apart, Australia and Sweden to be exact, Concrete Lung feel even more bonded and vindictive in sound and emotional rancor, opener Engine CL_TD_Cover_ArtVein swiftly stirring up ears and attention with its initial sonic lure and lead into a heavy handed prowl of ravenous yet seductive enterprise amidst predatory rhythms. The first impacting move in evidence is the live drums on the song and release which replace their until now ever present drum machine. It gives the track a spite and intensity, which was never lacking in the band’s sound previously, more bite and bad blooded ferocity. Soon the prowl slips into a just as menacing stroll, beats and riffs as imposing as ever and Oxime’s vocals raw and compelling venom. As it plays with its assault and expels a horde of inescapable hooks, the track has ears ringing and psyche cowering, its black heart exuding pained expression and emotion.

It is a pungent and striking start but just the appetiser for the dual brilliance of Die Dreaming Pt. II and Chemical Muzzle. The first crawls over the senses with an opening guitar snarl and a scuzzy bassline which has a flavour of early Wire to its very dirty temptation, the first of a torrent of baits band and track ensnare the passions with. The death seeded scourge of the Concrete Lung sound has the main voice as the song smothers and oppresses thoughts and senses, yet a nagging groove and barbarous baiting equally ignites lustful hunger for the infestation of sonic and impassioned malevolence. It is a brute of a proposition, primal and insatiable, as well as simple addiction, whilst its successor from a similar canvas of intent and maliciousness casts its own distinctive violation. It is arguably the track with the thickest toxin of punk to it, vocals and bass bruising the senses with a wall of intimidation from its first breath but with a contagiousness which only has the listener embracing it with willing submission, the track is a rabid seducing of jaundiced tempting.

   Self-Shriek (Self Murder) with its sonic and emotional detestation keep thoughts and feelings ruffled and engrossed. The crawling demonic tone of the vocals play with post punk shadows and doom soaked ambience within a unrelenting suffocation of sound and intensity. It is a riveting, hypnotic drama and trespass of the senses as well as further thick evidence of the band’s bold exploration of themselves and sound. Its erosive smog seeps into the portentous and cavernous depths of the following Plastic Mind too, but rapidly immersed into an industrial swamp of abrasing enterprise. As the last, the exceptional track is a slow smother of ears and beyond, its serpentine breath and sonic acidity a hope swallowing animus creeping note by note, syllable by syllable.

     Tolerance & Dependency is brought to a close by Closed Mouth, a track with the kind of infectious simplicity which historically has bred nursery rhythms at the heart of another unstoppable oncoming of an emotionally loathing and aurally consumptive wave. The track is quite simply an unavoidable intrusive seduction for those with a penchant for cruel invention.

Concrete Lung leaves every emotion ransacked and sound twisted upon their new violation, their most potent and violently compelling triumph yet. They just get better and nastier with each release, which after this makes the next equally as appetising and fearsome.

Tolerance & Dependency is released via Armalyte Industries @ 12am UK time Sunday 30th November and will be exclusive at http://concretelung.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/concrete.lung

RingMaster 28/11/2104

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Digicore – More Than Just An Ape

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UK industrial music in its varying shades and exploits has been a strong force for a long time if still arguably untapped by the media to send it deservedly deeper into the psyche of the world. Right now though there seems to be a pinnacle for the genre, a greater expanse of quality brewing within a wealth of releases over the past year parading talent and sounds that are irresistible. More Than Just An Ape, the new album from Digicore, is another adding its strength and invention to the growing plateau. It is an album which continues the band’s investigation of rock and industrial merged into a distinct confrontation veined with metal, electro, and punk , as well as one delving deeper into the modern world and its reliance on its god, technology, and its persuasion and effect on the human condition now and ahead. It is a brooding collection of songs, ones that inspire and challenge thought and emotion whilst equally inciting instinctive responses through sounds which are like an insatiable call to arms.

Formed in 2005 and consisting of Danny Carnage (vocals, guitars, programming), Matt Bastard (bass), and Cell (drums), the band spent two years crafting and creating More Than Just An Ape, the release stretching and taking the sound of the York band into new yet seamlessly evolved places and invention from previous album Without Freedom of 2011. Again released on Armalyte Industries, the eleven track album forges a sound and presence best described as Nine Inch Nails meets latter Pitchshifter with essences of Ghost In The Static, Gruntruck, and KMFDM placed in the mix. It is just a guide to a sound which at times feels familiar but with no evidence to why within its individual temptation. Fusing a wealth of other flavours into the compelling sonic narratives of the songs, More Than Just An Ape is one of those releases which deviously creep up on you simultaneously to offering an instant addictive persuasion, one which lingers long in the memory and psyche after its departure.

The opening In To Ruin emerges from a peaceful scene, church bells with an edge of discord drifting ambience slowly surrounded by an Digigorillaominous electro breath. An air of melancholy lays its touch into the brew especially with the introduction of the excellent vocals of Carnage, his tones clean, expressive, and throughout the album with a confrontational snarl. His appearance also sparks a more accelerated intensity bringing its intimidating presence though the track always has its rein gripped between its emotive sinews. It is an excellent starter and beckoning for the following You’re Not Like Me to unleash its thumping heart. Big boned beats frame the start before taking a step back for the caustic but restrained electro caresses to begin their impending scarring against the again strong vocals. Eventually the guitars sculpt their venomous presence whilst rhythms set a cage of menace and impact around the at times aggressive shift of the song. The song continues the impressive start set in motion whilst offering another of its potent aspects.

Both Disconnected and The Great Devourer provoke and expel vigorously imposing shadows, the first a carnivorous sonic expression that sucks air from lungs and hope from thoughts whilst its successor is a metallic predator where guitars and vocals which raised their growl and bite in the previous song now launch an intensive forceful stand against the ear, electro climbs offering underlying temptation to the almost Fear Factory like conspiracy. Both stand tall upon a release of nothing but peaks whilst next up I Will Not Be Afraid wraps warm melodic charm in coarse sonic washes with the vocals similarly composed to create another compelling danger.

     Hell On Earth is the best track on the release, a song which lays a dubstep/ebm dance canvas upon the ear for the sinew clad rhythmic juggling and corrosive metallic urgency to dance and rampage all over. Once more the band continually twist and evolve the gait and call of the song, creating a disorientating yet easily accessible intrigue and incitement to devour with rabid greed. It borders on bedlam and chaos but is superbly crafted and controlled to be one of the most forceful and anthemic riots heard this year.

Both the ferociously hearted Not One Of Us with its belligerent driving rhythms and the scintillating aurally toxic Don’t Belong Here leave pleasure and appetite full whilst Flesh is Weakness makes its challenge for best of honours with its emotionally charged and increasingly agitated presence. A climbing rage and sonic stimulus to mind and feelings, the song explores its and the listeners corners physically and emotionally, its challenging terms and riveting enticement just delicious.

Ending with the hellacious dance floor manipulator I Hate What I Have Become, which initially tears up the ease to which limbs can add their contribution evolving into another dramatic contemplation that wraps forcibly but enthrallingly around the body, and the brief epilogue of the title track, More Than Just An Ape is an outstanding album, one which leaves you short of breath and long in satisfaction. Offering an assessable first meeting but becoming much stronger and compelling when ridden over numerous courses, Digicore has reinforced not only their striking presence but that of industrial exploration within the UK. They stand side by side with the very best whilst holding their own distinct portion of the field. A must hear album.

http://www.digicoremusic.com/

8.5/10

RingMaster 02/08/2013

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Concrete Lung – Subtract Nerve EP

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We all know music can intimidate and bully the senses into either submission or rapid fleeing, at times sounds can even corrode the edge of reality into numbness but for sheer lethal intent none come as dangerous and viciously intrusive as the Subtract Nerve EP from synapse destructors Concrete Lung. The release is a violation which pours sonic venom into every atom and pore of sanity with craft and imagination. It will have many hiding and quaking in fear but for others it will be molten pleasure and a collection of malevolent bred tracks which seduce completely with exhausting and destructive creativity.

Released via Armalyte Industries and only available in a physical format (CD), which is very apt as the outstanding EP is as physical as it is aural; Subtract Nerve follows the acclaimed vinyl-only Die Dreaming single with an even harsher and heavy weighted intensity. Consisting of William Riever (bass guitar, keyboards, chants) and Ed Oxime (guitar, vocals, drum programming), Concrete Lung gnaw away at the senses and mind, their songs and new EP a bleak exploration of the futility of existence and its toll on the soul, an investigation which eats away at thoughts and passions to leave wasted remnants of hope and presumed safe existence in its ravenous wake.

User makes the first incision into the mind, its opening acid burning sonic lancing accompanied by whispered shadows and a CL_SN_FB_Teaser_2Dshamanic chant. Roving beats soon add their menace to the sizzling slow burning heat, the gait slow and prowling. It is a worrisome encounter at this point but not threatening, that is until the intensity expels its caustic pressure and weight upon the ear, harsh vocals slowly squalling around the lumbering mountainous depths of sound. With harmonic backing chants there is still a ‘lighter’ appeal veining the muscular leviathan of energy and intent, the scowling vocal corrosiveness of Oxime working the passions and mind as potently as the pungent sounds. The track brings the industrial essences of Ministry, Godflesh and early Pitchshifter to beat upon the listener, the EP bred of the same toxicity but taking it to the darkest destructive and emotionally destroying depths possible. Continually shifting to tease and consume alternately and often simultaneously, the opener makes a mighty beginning to the rapacious and primal consummation between band and passions.

The following Self-Shriek (Intensity) is instantly a carnivorous torrent of rabid riffs, flesh bruising vocals, and disorientating industrial beats. It is a knee buckling start which allows glimpses of mercy and for breaths to be taken with steps into hypnotic and deceptively tempting asides, but generally snatches then back into its predatory jaws before the listener can grasp their safer climes. It is a scintillating ride of abuse and carnal stimulation accelerating the ardour bred by its predecessor into a more lustful subservience, though that soon is surpassed by the best track on the release.

Rot And Seethe sears the senses with a sonic wash initially, scalding their surface with toxic caresses before being joined by savage swipes of mordant intensity, riffs born from rabidity, and skin flailing rhythmic tantalising, the union violent and hungry. It also expels a festering erosive breath which works away behind the severe surface and energy. It is a masterful conjuration of pain and seduction, a ravishing which ignites the passions whilst sterilising hope and life from their remaining refuges. It leaves ears ringing, nerves curled up into the fetal position, and the body displaced from reality; it is noise at its very provocative and majestic best.

Things get no easier as firstly Waste scars further the already entrenched wounds, its voracious and unslakable greed a vitriolic sonic fire which devours mercilessly through its scathing destructive discord embrace whilst Flux, a re-recording of their epic track, is pure aural cancer, taking an already great track into new pit seeded filth.

With a hidden track also waiting to gorge on the senses, the song sonic mercury with a predaceous toxin, Subtract Nerve is a deliciously vile slice of sonic alchemy. As said it will not be for everyone but if you like feeling and breathing your sounds whilst being taken to the darkest grievous places than Concrete Lung have the perfect vehicle.

http://www.concretelung.com/

9/10

RingMaster 03/07/2013

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