Ward XVI – The Art Of Manipulation

Grabbing attention, certainly for a moment or two is pretty much within the ability of most artists with an inkling of imagination in their sound and presentation; sustaining it across a parade of tracks and releases is not so easy but a prowess well within the capabilities of British outfit Ward XVI. They poked at ears and an initial awareness of their individual adventure with a self-titled debut EP in 2015 and now truly stoke the fires of both with their first album. The Art Of Manipulation is a 16-track escapade as diverse and bold in flavours as it is compelling in theatrical imagination and oh so enjoyable and fun.

Hailing from Preston, Ward XVI is a sextet of musicians bringing an array of widespread inspirations into their individual and united creativity. Since the release of that first EP, the band has shared stages with the likes of William Control and The Men that will not be Blamed for Nothing, played the main stage at O2 Academy Leeds in the final of the Soundwaves Music Competition, and increased their reputation and success across their native North West with a host of headlining shows. Recently signing with Germany’s Rock ’N’ Growl Records, the band is now teasing and tempting national recognition with The Art Of Manipulation, a release which has you rocking in body and imagination from start to finish with its multi-flavoured avant-garde rock.

A concept album telling the introspective story of a female psychopath locked away in a high security asylum, each track a delving into her past life and telling the story of how she manipulated a man into killing for her using her feminine charm, The Art Of Manipulation introduces itself with doctor and protagonist tempting and contemplating the story leading to the waiting embrace of Ward XVI. Take My Hand emerges from its lead, melancholic guitar and keys caressing the senses as vocalist Psychoberrie adds her potent lures to its entrance. Soon a gentle stroll, the song swiftly reveals an infectious swing, a low key flirtation which soon finds a hungrier intent as the song explodes with a fusion of metal/rock tenacity. Two minutes of rousing rock ‘n’ roll, the song sets up appetite and attention with ease and ready for the album’s following title track. Again a mellow start beckons ears, guitars weaving an elegant web before the darker shadows of Beardy McStumble’s bass and the senses clipping beats of Jake step in. There is an elegant but portentous air to the joining keys of Min, a threat which ignites as the song slips into a tempestuous canter of riffs and rhythms led by the increasingly enticing and impressive tones of Psychoberrie. Theremin lures add to the intrigue and appetising character of the track, punk and metal essences colluding with the rapacious rock ‘n’ roll steered by the guitars of Lex Whittingham and Dr. Von Stottenstein with the song ebbing and flowing in energy and aggression across its eventful body, every second a tease and temptation to devour.

A verbal interlude bridges one rich highlight to another as The Flight takes over, the track at first a heavy boned hard rock stomp but soon surrounding its heady march with electro revelry. It is a glorious rousing mix, a fusion of flavours which, though not exactly in a similar sound, ignites the imagination like a fusion of Kontrust and Russkaja, heavy metal flames extra spicing to the fiery mix. By now the diversity of the Ward XVI sound is inescapable, a magnetic trait among many which continues into the next up and brilliant Crystal Ball. Instantly capturing ears with its open Stolen Babies inspiration, the song quickly adds some gypsy dance revelry to the mix, Min’s accordion a flirtatious enticement as it aligns with Molotov Jukebox like antics and emerges as another unique track in the Ward XVI asylum.

The piano nurtured beauty of Hold Me calms things down a touch, the key’s suggestive writing courted by spicy guitar strains and the bewitching voice of Psychoberrie as the song irresistibly serenades the senses. Becoming more volatile with each passing minute, the track keenly captivates before another revealing interlude splits its draw and the equally potent call of Blackened Heart. A heavy rock roar, the song shares its own creative dance of varied spices and individual craft to keep the pleasure flowing even though it misses the bolder attributes of other tracks around it such as Run For Your Lives. The track is a boisterous mix of antagonism and flirtation, the keys mixing gypsy punk with the hard rock throes of riffs and rhythms and with vocals just as textually mixed and gripping, irritability increasingly brewing in them as the sounds until the carnival dance of its finale, it is another pinnacle of an already highly addictive proposition.

Adrenochromania seduces like a dark dream, its predacious shadows and spatial melodic caresses a weave of emotional disorder and euphoria; a union careering towards rock ‘n’ roll psychosis which breaks with zeal and enterprise as the guitars subsequently sizzle and keys progressively weave with equal relish. Psychoberrie gives the recipe to manipulation within it all, her tones a lingering essence as the song departs for the lively electro rock ‘n’ roll of Cry Of The Siren to step up and stir up body and energy.

Its potent temptation is instantly overshadowed by the psychotic nursery room smile of Toybox, the song recalling Stolen Babies again with a touch of Venus De Vilo to the vocal dance of Psychoberrie. Accordion and guitars wrap around rhythmic trespasses as the song hits its full weighty voice though it is that initial innocence spawned discordance which steals the passions most on its subsequent return into the track’s muscular tempest.

The outstanding Inner Demon has ears and thoughts flared up again with its rapacious punk ‘n’ roll, hooks and grooves as dangerous as the edge in the vocals and the song’s rhythmic infestation of the senses. Providing another major highlight, the song brings another hue to the landscape and adventure of the album, as all those before it, pushing and stretching the band’s sound and drama to another slightly different and deranged quarter without losing the inherent infectiousness of the release.

The album closes with the track Ward XVI, its own and its inmate’s final destination reached. An initial keys crafted gentle start deceives; its suggestion of contrition and realisation soon consumed by the raging blaze of sound and intensity which erupts as the release burns its final success into the senses and imagination. It is a fine end to an encounter which offers a little more with every listen; a striking affair from a band we for one are already hungrily waiting to hear more from. The Art Of Manipulation is a must for the bold, musically adventurous, and yes slightly deranged.

The Art Of Manipulation is out now on Rock ’N’ Growl Records @ https://wardxvi.bandcamp.com/album/the-art-of-manipulation

http://www.wardxvi.com/     https://www.facebook.com/WardXVI/

Pete RingMaster 11/07/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

OMRÅDE – Nåde

2015 saw the release of an album which deserved far more attention than it got and warranted every syllable of praise offered its “visual and aural telescope.” Edari was the invention of French duo OMRÅDE who now return with its equally startling successor Nåde. That first full-length made ears and imagination pay attention, the second simply demands it and repays with what will surely be classed as one of the major adventures of the year.

OMRÅDE consists of vocalist/guitarist Bargnatt Xix, known elsewhere as Christophe Denhez of Nerv and previously Mur and In The Guise Of Men, and drummer/keyboardist/programmer Arsenic, christened Jean-Philippe Ouamer and the skin hitter of Idensity and formerly of Nerv. Together they weave a collection of avant-garde soundscapes nurtured from everything around the ambience hued climates of post rock, industrial, electronica, and avant-garde metal, and that is simplifying their fascinating explorations of sound and emotion. It is a mix which created a compelling proposal in the cinematic adventure of Edari and now the even more aurally haunting and stirring Nåde.

Whereas the first album felt like looking across a broad canvas of universes there is much stronger intimacy fuelling Nåde, like ears and thoughts are peering in on the tempestuous fortunes and emotions of a single soul representing the surroundings and lives within a noir lit and suffocating climate. That is not to say it does not venture through worldly landscapes too, just they all feel cored by the same instinctive melancholy and depressive clad spirit. Influences upon the project include the likes of Ulver, Manes, and God Is An Astronaut, essences certainly seeping across the new album along with an equal infusion of Nine Inch Nails/Palms scented shadows and suggestiveness.

Nåde opens up with Malum and swiftly has electronic beats and guitar coaxing ears as Denhez’ vocals share the song’s heart and beleaguered emotions. Pretty much haunting thoughts and psyche from its first breath, its inner psychosis is just as swift in stirring the imagination as vocals hint at a soul trapped yet seemingly revelling in the inevitability of inescapable turmoil. Strings and brass soon after bring their seductive shadows and flames respectively to the blossoming atmosphere and body of the song, a cinematic wash in tow yet that personal dispute continues to voice things. It is a stunning piece of music and vocal insight, instantly surpassing anything on that impressive first album and just the start of a uniquely stirring journey.

The following XII has a gentler touch, its hazy atmosphere jazzy and sombre yet with a warm glow which only attracts like a night’s final brandy. Keys tease as Leo Sors’ guesting sax woozily blows with suggestive prowess, each flame embracing reflective vocals and in turn a hotly simmering funk shuffle. With Bernard-Yves Querel adding his guitar, the track at times is something akin to 6:33 certainly with the emerging depths and mercurial intensity of the track; ears and imagination enthralled and sucked into its unpredictable enterprise and dark instrumental theatre. Whereas the first was physically provocative, the second is emotionally inciting with just as rich results before the outstanding Enter beckons the listener into its melodically woven, progressively shaped, and increasingly virulent proposal. With a snarling brooding within the guitars and an unstoppable catchiness lining its brewing rapacity, the song is a lively cauldron of infectiousness and trespassing anxiety, each conflicting with and accentuating the other.

Hänelle is pure heart ruptured melancholy, another track which builds in intensity and intimate drama on every level from an initial smoulder nurtured as much by Jonathan Maronnier ‘s clarinet as emotional shadows while Styrking Leið is a haunted croon; a siren like lure of vocals and keys and if slower to tempt as its predecessors simply growing into another lingering highlight especially with its increasing visual potency and emotional desperation. The song sees Edgard Chevallier guesting on guitar while next up The Same For The Worst features additional vocals from L. Chuck D in its jazzy intoxication with Julien Gebenholtz’s bass a captivating pleasure all on its own. Becoming more fevered and intense with emotion as sounds share a volatile almost bedlamic restlessness, the track has ears and thoughts gripped. Certainly it is not the easiest listen within Nåde but boy is it one of the most rewarding and impacting.

The final pair of tracks ensure captivation and pleasure is as burning as ever. Baldar Jainko is as similarly intensive as the previous track, its heart and scenery a sharing and conflict of peace and faith with emotions and suggestiveness working on personal and worldly levels. Closing track, Falaich, is almost apocalyptic in tone and touch; an epilogue or portent of our emotional and physical destructions and apathy to it which is seriously gripping from start to finish and only increasing the vice as it provokes the darkest thoughts and richest enjoyment.

It is easy to suggest that if Edari impressed and impacted on you previously, Nåde will blow you away and for newcomers to OMRÅDE, the moment when music might just become much more than ear pleasing.

Nåde  is released May 26th via My Kingdom Music.

https://www.facebook.com/Omradetheband    http://omradetheband.wix.com/omrade

Pete RingMaster 26/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

SECTLINEFOR – Anorexic Insect

sctlfr_RingMasterReview

With a back story as cinematic as the sounds and suggestiveness conjured, reading between its lines it seems that SECTLINEFOR has been a seed and adventure long time in the making for its creator Pavel Stepanov aka Piton, the guitarist of progressive synthetic death metallers Ygodeh. It is a project as far away from that impressive proposition as you can imagine and one which with debut album Anorexic Insect seriously ignites the imagination.

London based, SECTLINEFOR’s sound is tagged as cinematic neo-metal though no precise description can be made for the unique and striking avant-garde lined adventure it takes the listener on. With fellow Ygodeh member in bassist Aal and vocalist/lyricist Jared alongside, Piton creates the darkest tales with Anorexic Insect, its series of haunting nightmares as seductively engaging as they are boldly deranged. Musically the album persistently infests body and psyche whilst the vocals of Jared are pure magnetism with their winy prowess.

It all begins with the album’s title track, its low key start of synths and atmospheric theatre instinctive coaxing for the listener swiftly accentuated by the vocal gurning of Jared. Beats soberly pulsate whilst Aal’s bass probes the senses, drama fuelling every second and note especially as the track subsequently erupts with muscular psychosis. As across the whole release, there is a touch of Trepalium, 6:33, and Cardiacs to its off kilter exploits; of Stump too with Jared’s vocal presence something closely akin to Mick Lynch of that band, but as suggested earlier, each is a flavour suggested merely hinting at what is on offer from band and album.

anorexic__RingMasterReviewThe outstanding start continues with The Aftertaste of Soap. Its initial industrial lure is soon a more forceful proposition preying on the senses, at times stalking ears and in other moments making bolder statements of intent as the song ebbs and flows in intensity. Symphonic essences bring greater evocatively suggestive spicing to the challenge while rhythms offer an infectiously energetic agitation as vocals and melodies entwine the harsher attributes of the compelling encounter.

As invasively dark as everything is, My Neighbour was on TV explores an even more sinister landscape next. Throughout the album, there is a suffocating intimacy in atmosphere and emotion just like the grisliness which lies at the heart of folk and fairy tales and in the third track it devours ears and thoughts, exciting each simultaneously before Birthmark Photograph uncages its own psychotic bedlam and electronic flirtation in a bed of metallic causticity. It is glorious stuff, like the album a proposition which will either work for you or not but if it does, SECTLINEFOR provide manna for the senses and indeed imagination.

Anorexic Insect is a fusion of creative beauty and unhinged dynamics which borders on alchemy and no more potent than in the bewitching addled embrace of Orange Soda and in turn the inventively provocative haywire that is Checkmate. Both songs twist and turn with certifiable imagination and relish and each presents in their individual ways a tapestry of skilfully woven adventure and incitement upon which Jared roars with vocal meshuga, a creative abnormality perfectly matched by the composing and craft of Piton and the throbbing stimulus of Aal.

Through the grand drama of Congratulations and the poetic grace of Gag Reflex of Stray Dogs, there is no let-up in unpredictable theatre and pleasure; each a web of inventive deceit and captivation gleefully twisting the listener this way and that. I’m Not Having That Much Fun Anymore equally exposes ears to raw insanity and imagination at its nerviest while the outstanding Little Handjobs strokes an already inflamed appetite for the album with hectic tenacity and hyperactive energy.

Finished off by the raw Lovecraftian instrumental trespasses of The Door and The Secret Behind, this certainly no warm Witch and The Wardrobe like fantasy, Anorexic Insect is a rare and exhilarating proposition. As mentioned some will run from its inner terrors and emotional turmoil but those with instinctive adventure in their tastes will be rewarded with one of the early true treats of 2017.

Anorexic Insect is out now @ https://sectlinefor.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pg/sectlinefor/

Pete RingMaster 01/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Pryapisme – Diabolicus Felinae Pandemonium

band-_RingMasterReview

The press release for Diabolicus Felinae Pandemonium, the third album from the creative diablerie that is avant-garde/experimental metallers Pryapisme, declares it is “definitely the album of immaturity”. In truth it is the most accomplished, dare one say inventively mature offering from the Clermont-Ferrand hailing outfit yet. That growth has not defused the rousing bedlamic imagination of the band, in fact it seems to have escalated its mischief but where previous releases might be called schizophrenic such the mayhem of their head spinning diversity, Diabolicus Felinae Pandemonium feels in control of its creative chicanery; the result importantly again, a hell of a lot of fun and another irresistible infestation of psyche and spirit by the French outfit.

Their latest release is the first recorded with the band’s actual live formation rather than the core trio, the full quintet of Benjamin Bardiaux (keyboards), Nils Cheville (guitar), Antony Miranda (bass, guitar, moog, vocals), Nicolas Sénac (guitar), and Aymeric Thomas (drums, clarinet, keyboards) revealing their off-kilter craft and imagination. The album itself reveals the “advent of the Era of the Cat, the one which will replace mankind. After the arrival of the lol-cats all over internet, which constitutes the last conspiracy, well after the one of Ancient Egypt where the cats were already ruling the highest spheres of power, the diabolical felines are now preparing the birth of Satan’s cat, the Chosen One which will tame humanity and in the end, conquer the whole galaxy with the help of its pentagram of cat food.” Further music to our ears as we always claimed they were the devil’s spawn.

It opens up with Un max de croco, coaxing Middle Eastern vines escaping the guitar as rhythms shuffle around, ready to dance in the subsequent blossoming of melodic frivolity. There is a restraint to it all though, a reserve which accentuates the glint in the eye of hooks and keyboard spun melodies. In saying that, the infectiousness of the track is rampant and only strengthened by the jazzy twist and throaty throb of the contrabass provided by guest Matthieu Halberstadt (Ogino, Please lose battle). Never predictable but as expected and welcomed, the band and song turn on a spin of notes through varied styles and flavours, each move enslaving body and imagination in active participation.

artwork_RingMasterReviewLa Boetie stochastic process follows, flowing with summery warmth and flirtatious catchiness through darker shadows and dirtier street corners, every crevice a well of human drama and devilish enterprise. As with every song, thoughts have a field day interpreting and playing with the suggestiveness offered and the melodic painting shared, hips swinging with zeal to funk infused turns as the sax of Adrien Daguzon (Zibeline) flames in the midst of it all. There is a touch of 6:33 to the track, a whiff of Trepalium in its rowdier twists but as ever expectantly unique to Pryapisme.

The tenacious stroll of 100 % babines, pur molossoïde! roams ears and imagination next, its wave of hookery and sonic theatre if not cinematic resembling themes of those old sixties detective/sci-fi shows around floral melodies and darker, almost sinister beauty. Its individual escapade and canvas of sound just confirms another release driven by unbridled diversity, A la Zheuleuleu backing its affirmation with its celestial, moon lit saunter into a hectic and aggressively boisterous romp while Tau Ceti Central immerses the listener in another jazz scented, smoky adventure.

The album is like a travelogue, glimpses at landscapes and intimate insights discovered and invaded by its theme’s protagonists though Tête de museau dans le boudoir (Intermezzo) is more of a captivating and increasingly weird caress allowing for mental refreshment though to be fair it engages with the imagination as much as any other proposal within the album such its loco array of styles.

Myxomatosis against architektür vol IV is equally a rich tapestry of styles, its psychotic nature a trespass of extreme and melodic metal bound in the virulent revelry of varied flavours and pure manna for body and soul before Carambolage fillette contre individu dragon non-décortiqué casts its Nintendo spun contagion, a lure becoming more tempestuous with time as guitars and rhythms add their cartoonish devilment.

The album is completed by firstly C++ and its mesh of cosmopolitan spicing and endeavour, not forgetting mewing cats, and lastly Totipotence d’un erg, an epic thirteen minutes of dawning power, imposing contagion, and majestic wickedness. Flying by such the consuming potency of its evolving drama and kaleidoscopic soundscape, the track alongside its predecessor provides a compelling end to another thrilling outing with the instinctive insanity of Pryapisme.

Diabolicus Felinae Pandemonium is arguably the band’s most fluid and persistently contagious release yet, certainly it is their most skilfully woven and a treat for the bold and the insane.

Diabolicus Felinae Pandemonium is out now through Apathia Records @ https://apathiarecords.bandcamp.com/album/diabolicus-felinae-pandemonium

https://www.facebook.com/pryapisme    https://twitter.com/Pryapisme

Pete RingMaster 08/02/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Peekaboo Primate – Misanthropical

PP_RingMasterReview

Bedlam suggests an element of chaos to its madness, an uncontrolled essence which certainly does not fit the character of Misanthropical, the new album from Finnish alternative metallers Peekaboo Primate. Yet in every other way the word best describes the creative diversity and inventive loco of the band’s irresistible incitement. The release holds ten tracks which twist and turn like a kinetically sonic kaleidoscope weaving an eclectic array of flavours into their own distinct imagination fuelled escapades.

Peekaboo Primate is like the joker in the pack of modern metal; not the fool playing with a lunatic demeanour just for attention, though mischief is never far from their imagination and songs, but the bold protagonist using unpredictable exploits to ignite the senses and inspire thoughts towards, in the case of Misanthropical, a world where “as ugly, brutal and harsh but sometimes also beautiful as it is – everybody wants to be part of the greatest party of our time before our species go extinct solely by our own hand.

Hailing from Tampere, and originally under the name of Airhead, Peekaboo Primate was formed in 2004 by vocalist Lauri Lepokorpi and drummer Riku Airisto. The original line-up also included Hannu Kumpula and Tuomas Kumpula up to the release of the band debut album Peek-a-boo Primates in 2011. Following its release, the band changed its name to Peekaboo Primate with its personnel subsequently completed by the addition of guitarist Matti Auerkallio and bassist Juhani Rytkönen.

The time between albums has seen the band’s sound evolve and become even more defined in its real uniqueness, though if looking for a hint to what band and Misanthropical offer, imagine a mix of Dog Fashion Disco, American Head Charge, and Five Star Prison Cell with a touch of 6:33 to it. From its first heartbeat the album has ears and attention gripped; Spray Tan opening things up with an assault of tenaciously unpredictable rhythms and hungry riffs as wiry grooves wind around their thick bait. The vocals of Lepokorpi are just as dynamic and impressive, carrying an air of Chad Gray to their rousing presence at times as keys and guitars create a masterfully tempestuous and exotically dramatic theatre of sound

PP_Cover_RingMasterReviewIt is a thumping start matched in quality and irresistibility by the psychotically cultured Ha Ha. Sonic and rhythmic stabs court vocal shenanigans from the start with heftier beats soon adding their instable intent to the quickly compelling mix. Slithers of jazz and groove metal flirt with avant-garde psychosis as the track grows and writhes as well as anthemically incites in equal measure before allowing Nothing the opportunity to prey on an already submissive appetite and imagination for the release. The song saunters along with flirtatious and intimidating hues to the fore, Lepokorpi like the ringleader in its midst as his narrative challenges and highlights the issues theming the magnetic proposal.

From its initial intriguing low key start, The Unleashed soon unveils a pulsating and sinister body of synth bred sound as exotic and sultry hues in female voice and melodic suggestiveness add an alluring invitation. The challenging words of Lepokorpi probe and echo in the background before with unpredictability as enjoyable and prominent as ever, the track slips into a reggae cultured shade of character, though it is just one moment in the revolving journey of the encounter.

An addictive dose of pop ‘n’ roll grips next in the outstanding shape of Heroine, its catchy colour led by the great guest vocals of Noora Louhimo from Battle Beast. The rest of the song is a predacious prowl with the again effect coated tones of Lepokorpi stirring up riffs and rhythms between the flames of pop temptation. Within moments, it is sure to have bodies bouncing and voices fully involved, as ours, before Mama Earth rumbles as sonic spices zoom in and out across its growling tone and nature; that American Head Charge reference coming to the fore here, across a wonderfully grouchy yet fiercely inviting proposition.

As its predecessor, Star has a more ‘straight forward’ adventure to its body, though as the last treat too, there are plenty of unexpected and seamlessly woven together twists to catch out expectations and enthral the imagination, especially when uncaging some creative aberration midway. It’s more composed sanity and boldness is contrasted by the delicious raw frenzy of Peekaboo Primate, the track a demented slice of noise rock infested avant-garde/nu metal mania and quite irresistible as it stalks and bruises the senses.

Some of its punkiness survives in the cantankerous luring of ears by Follow My Lead, though the song is unafraid to bring some pop seeded melody and contagion into its imposing metal shuffle between even more irritable and aggressive trespasses.

Ending with the melodic caress of 291112, an emotively suggestive instrumental which fits easier into the scheme of the album with each full listen, Misanthropical is ripe pickings for the imagination and enjoyment. It offers a canvas and adventure which persistently provides fresh twists and surprises even after numerous listens. We will admit, we had not heard of Peekaboo Primate previously, a band which right now it is hard with their music to get out of our heads.

Misanthropical is released on CD and digitally May 12th via Inverse Records.

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

Pete RingMaster 12/05/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Skin Drone – Evocation

Skin Drone - Evocation _RingMasterReview

Evocation is the eagerly awaited debut album from US duo Skin Drone, a web based project consisting of vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Erik Martin (Critical Dismemberment) and multi-instrumentalist/producer Otto Kinzel (Chemical Distance/Bluntface Records). Both have released and been part of many striking and praise luring proposals but it is as Skin Drone that the pair arguably creates their most un-conventionally inventive and imposingly experimental adventures as evidenced by Evocation.

The album is a collection of emotionally and lyrically dark tales fuelled by insanity and torment encased in a hard to pin down tapestry reaping the raw and caustic might as well as beauty of certainly extreme, industrial, and avant-garde metal. Each track is a tempestuous journey through ravenous shadows, hellacious landscapes, and emotive turmoil but songs which equally at times share melancholic beauty and intimate psychosis. All grab keen attention on the first listen, each enslaving ears and thoughts, but it is through the journey of numerous plays that their layers, depths, and full compelling characters compellingly truly come alive.

With one half of the band in Hot Springs, Arkansas and the other in Boston, Massachusetts, it is hard not to  be quickly impressed by the skilful and coherent weave of almost kaleidoscopic textures and ideas, an organic unity which has blossomed through assumingly a torrent of ideas and files being passed back and forth between the duo. Admittedly though, as opener Scarlet Road consumes the senses, Evocation has thoughts swiftly engaged in other creative dramas and intrigue too. The first track envelops ears with a rousing roar of vocal squalls amidst technical and death metal animosity. It has a swagger and toxic virulence which needs little time to infest appetite and imagination, with the latter also persistently gripped by the glimmer of unpredictable incitement which rises from the track’s mellow and provocative slips into emotional dissonance. The track is pure fascination, a challenge and poetic tempting leaving a lingering imprint on the psyche whether washing solemnly over the senses or nagging them with torrential antagonistic discord.

Erik & Otto album_RingMasterReviewIts emotional turbulence is matched by that of the following God Complex, another ravenous proposal of extreme and venomously grooved metal entangled with sinister disharmony and emotional dissension. The raw vocals squalls create a great rapacious texture in the tempest and the haunting ambience sharing the song’s air, adding great discord and heart bred turmoil again in an offering inflamed with raging ire or sharing sombre caresses. The track continues to envelop and involve across its ever evolving body, sharing its discordancy with its outstanding successor, Death Sentence. It is a carnivorous piece of music and invention, but equally a thrilling adventurous dive through a wealth of avant-garde/progressive experimentation amidst a toxically grooved and rabidly irritable incitement; it all colluding for one breath-taking and emotionally pestilential offering.

Shepherd of the Damned is an inharmonious crawl over the senses next, organ and vocal menace a caliginous calling aided by pained clean vocals before a ravaging expulsion of intensity and sounds spills their animosity. The track continues to weave in and out of vicious and elegant melancholy without escaping the emotional hell at its heart before making way for the nature-esque soundscape and again haunting charm of Ghost Reflection. As always though, even in its warmest melodic seducing, shadows lurk, biding their time as strings and keys skilfully serenade and seed the imagination. They are never allowed a real grip here though, instead a tribalistic rhythmic shuffle emerging to surprise and draw the listener closer as similarly bred vocals dance on their beats.

That darkness does get its moment though in the infectious rock ‘n’ roll of City Lights; a track which seems to stalk the senses even as it launches tenacious roars and bruising tides of rhythmic temptation. Even in that predacious intent, guitars create veins of sonic enticement subsequently leading to seductive noir lit physical and emotional scenery. The track is another pinnacle of Evocation, a fiercely memorable and greed sparking moment backed up just as dynamically and imaginatively by Witching Hour. Evil lines every beat and savage riff, Martin’s scarring vocal trespasses too but again the band creates infectious grooves and a raw catchiness which simply pulls you into the fire of the track. An addictive throaty bassline only adds to the irresistible bait of the track’s quarrel and creative rancor too, a lure equalled by the song’s industrial fizz and melodic oasis further in.

Classical keys coax ears and thoughts into the dark conflict within Darkness Within next; the track a heavy resonating smoulder of emotional and sonic disunity growing from a calm reflective charm into intrusive discordance. As with all tracks within Evocation, every moment is in flux and evolving into a new shade of turbulence and anguish brewed intimacy with matching character of sound to enthral and thrill.

Closing up with Salvation, a similar but individual tapestry woven from varying shades of darkness aligned to emotional greys, Skin Drone leave ears and emotions numb and enjoyment rampant. As suggested, Evocation should be embraced over numerous listens, every one bringing something new to explore while casting fresh twists on ideas already nurtured by previous ventures into its impressive depths. This often viscerally impacting album will not be for everyone but for those with bold imagination and a taste for a band pushing its and metal’s boundaries, Evocation and Skin Drone are worth a heavy slice of attention.

Evocation is released June 14th via Bluntface Records with pre-ordering available @ http://skindrone.bandcamp.com/album/evocation

https://www.facebook.com/skindrone/   https://twitter.com/skindrone   http://www.bluntfacerecords.com/

Pete RingMaster 10/05/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Second To Sun – The First Chapter

STS_RingMaster Review

At the beginning of 2015, we had the opportunity to check out the Three Fairy Tales EP and a couple of singles around it from Russian metallers Second To Sun. It was an instrumental experience and adventure which just lit our ears and imagination. Now as the year begins to wind down, another proposition from the trio in the shape of a new album has ruffled the mental feathers and ruptured a rich vein of pleasure. The First Chapter is a nine track exploration of the broadest tapestry of metal styles and invention, carrying on from where the EP and certainly singles left off but breeding new experimental and ferocious captivation.

Second To Sun began back in 2012, formed by guitarist/keyboardist Vladimir Klimov-Lehtinen and drummer Artem Vishnyakov. The departure of the latter saw the band as a one man project for a while before bassist Anton Danilevsky and drummer Theodor Borovsky linked up with Klimov-Lehtinen. Debut album Based On A True Story was released in 2013 to welcoming ears and comments with the Three Fairy Tales EP coming towards the end of the following year, its unveiling drawing greater attention and in turn acclaim. Now the trio unleash The First Chapter, an encounter with a title suggesting it is a climax to the first part of the Second To Sun ascent, and tracks that are opening up a new soundscape and emprise of the band’s composing and sound.

Second To Sun - The First Chapter (2015) _RingMaster Review   As mentioned the Second To Sun sound is a ravenous kaleidoscope of sound described as “modern metal with the elements of black metal and ethnic Finno-Ugric music.” It is a thick and rich tapestry that draws on every strain of extreme and melodic hues you can wish for, creating immersive creative escapades inspired by the history and life of the Finno-Ugrian nations within Eurasia. It is also a highly evocative incitement as shown by album opener Spirit Of Kusoto. Inspired by a holy grove of the Mari people with very deep sacral meaning and serving as a “church”, the track places the imagination in the heart of the forest with the strains of Mari folk song Sun rises lighting ears. It is a potent suggestiveness which soon erupts into a more primal and rugged proposal, rhythms a predatory incitement as the guitar spews caustic hues. Almost as quickly a calm and beauty takes over as the bass continues to skilfully grumble; this another brief exploit in the evolving character and landscape of the track. The piece is riveting, an insight to a dark and bright place with danger and warmth almost fighting over themselves to dominate but ultimately uniting in one fluid enthralment as folkish as it is blackened, as mesmeric as it is intimidating.

Red Snow is an instantly more raw and carnivorous place, a torrent of hungry aggressive sound effectively representing the feel and climate of the tale of nine young men who died at the infamous Dyatlov Pass. You almost feel the cold, the starkness, and turmoil endured as rhythms and sonic imagination create a barbarous and compelling provocation throughout but the track is also as potent in its echo of the rural folkish landscape as voices and percussion amongst many flavours emerge. The track is as rousingly bewitching as its predecessor, a canvas for thoughts to interpret and use to cast their own take on events inspiring the piece before the dark, haunting beauty of Me or Him takes over to seduce and inflame the senses and imagination. Simultaneously mesmeric and bedlamic, each contrast superbly cultured and honed by the band, the track is a predator of sound with a gripping maelstrom of emotion and ideation woven into an irresistible trespass of diversely brewed incitement.

Through the djent, death metal twisted Land of the Fearless Birds and the oppressively enjoyable The Blood Libel, band and album only tighten their grip on body and appetite. The first is another fearsomely predacious offering with bloodied melodies and a psyche stirring atmosphere whilst its successor opens up a cauldron of black/death bred heresy with welcomingly invasive enterprise. Both tracks in their own way, impressively stalk ears and thoughts whilst casting an almost hypnotic lure through the scintillating invention and craft of all members. The imagination of guitar and keys from Klimov-Lehtinen is especially rousing, though arousal of instincts and passions are just as powerfully nurtured by the bass imagination of Danilevsky and the resourceful swings and beats of Borovsky.

Narčat in contrast to the previous pair bounds in like a warrior, bold and creatively tenacious like the young woman inspiring its heart. The track is an undiluted assault of energy, aggression, and a masterfully entwined diversity of metallic and melodic styles, all fused into a bracing tempest matched in its own individual storm by Virgo Mitt. Within the track though, an elegant beauty within a melodic oasis emerges to seduce and shape the tale being conjured in thoughts. The inspiration to the piece of music is as fascinating as the sound, and we suggest certainly checking out the background to all tracks via Second To Sun’s bandcamp to gain even more richness to the experience of the songs.

Completed by excellent bonus track Chokk Kapper, a spiny affair of riffs and rhythms branching out with intoxicating sonic and melodic intrigue and invention, and a demo version of Narčat, The First Chapter is a stirring and forcibly impressive provocateur of ears and thoughts, not forgetting pleasure. As progressive and avant-garde in as many ways as it is technical and extreme, the album confirms suggestions made by previous releases, that Second To Sun is one uniquely thrilling proposition.

The First Chapter is available now digitally and on CD via http://secondtosun.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/second2sun   http://www.secondtosun.net/

Pete RingMaster 25/11/2105

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