Chasing Dragons – Faction

There is no doubt there has been plenty of eager anticipation for the debut album from British rockers Chasing Dragons, especially since the release of their last EP, Faction: Prologue, a couple years back. It was a kind of teaser for the band’s first full-length, unsurprisingly called Faction, which built on their earlier offerings and successes whilst peering into a whole new landscape of sound and imagination, indeed intimation now fully explored and expanded within the new encounter where we would suggest, the Chasing Dragons sound has come of age.

The time since the last EP has also seen the Leeds outfit truly establish themselves on the UK live scene with a big reputation to match, Chasing Dragons sharing tours and stages with the likes of Stone Broken, The Qemists, Skid Row, SikTh, InMe, Diamond Head, Aaron Buchanan and The Cult Classics, Courage My Love, Skarlett Riot, Theia and many more. Featuring nine new songs along with re-recorded versions of the three tracks from the Faction: Prologue EP, the album swiftly ignites attention and imagination with opener Factionless. Part intro part full intimation, the track stretches up from its initial arousal on the ever striking tones of vocalist Tank. Like a flame within unsettled atmospherics, her potent presence is a rich lure and spark for the outstanding piece’s subsequent shadow bound predacious stroll. Portentous yet virally inviting, the track masterfully erupts before making way for the melodically inflamed How The World Went Black. Guitarist Adam quickly spins a web of metallic temptation woven with melodic rock enterprise whilst the track bites through the determined beats of Katie, they courted by the dark rumble from Murf’s bass. Progressive hues emerge as the song evolves, technical craft lining its invention as all the while Tank radiates with her powerful and impressive delivery.

Amongst the band’s influences stand artists such as Halestorm, Avenged Sevenfold, and Bullet For My Valentine, all open spices to the band’s individual recipe as proven again by the melodically vociferous roar that is Parasite and the dramatic exploits of Like Gravity. The latter is a tempest of textures and flavours carrying a volatility which accentuates its warmth and elegance rather than devours them. As many tracks, it is a proposition which grows by the minute through new twists and avenues, all unpredictable and each an imaginative turn along the track’s magnetic journey.

 Through the equally tense Bareknuckle Lover, the mercurial attack of the track as alluring as it is resourceful, and the lively emotive roar of For Kingdom For Glory, Chasing Dragons continue to add fresh adventure to their release. The second of the two in some ways promises more than it delivers, certain inventive moments not exploited as much as personal tastes wished yet is still a gripping snare of sound.

The calmer climate and croon of This Time Is Ours allowed a breath as it simply enthralled though it too has a sprightly nature which eventually catches fire with Adam casting another striking blaze veined with mazy temptation before the riveting Devil In Her Eyes wound eager attention around its tantalisingly creative fingers and in turn The Connection takes ears on a saunter through gothic lined shadows and emotionally suggestive caresses before subsequently erupting into a furnace of muscular sonic theatre. The second of the trio is especially irresistible, every moment a clever thread into the next unexpected and virulent turn of the song though then pretty much matched in glory by its successor.

As the classic seeds of the similarly impressing I’m No Devil (I’m Just A Girl) catch fire within its metal/heavy rock drama and Whitehorse teases and fascinates, the album continues to reveal new aspects in sound and craft; the latter’s haunting opening passage an especially mouth-watering incitement for ears and imagination which hints at new corners and corridors for the band to explore ahead.

We Are The Wall concludes the release, the track a ravenous onslaught of sound and intent driven by rapacious rhythms and coloured by wiry grooves and rich melodies as Tank for a final time powerfully incites thoughts as she potently roars.

It is a fine end to an equally ear-catching album which as suggested declares Chasing Dragons at a new level in songwriting, sound, and performance, a plateau teasy to suspect the metal/rock world will be unable to ignore.

Faction is available now across most online stores.

Chasing Dragons November 2018 Faction Headline Tour

 2nd – Manchester – Satan’s Hollow – support Ward XVI, Soul Desire, Fear Me December

3rd – Croydon – Croydon Rocks Fest

4th – Southampton – Joiners – support Novacrow + TBC

6th – Norwich – Brickmakers  – support The Killing Culture + TBC

7th – Birmingham – Hammer & Anvil – support Novacrow + TBC

8th – Nuneaton – Queens Hall – support Novacrow + Simai + Fleer

9th – Stamford – Mama Liz’s – support Synthetic + Black Hawk Down

10th – Wakefield – Black Mass – support Novacrow + The Sourheads + Seas Of Scarlet

https://www.chasingdragons.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/chasingdragonsuk/   https://twitter.com/xchasingdragons

Pete RingMaster 18/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Returning to the garden with Leaving Eden

Two years on we have linked back up with Leaving Eden songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Eric Gynan to catch up with the band. Already renowned for their ear grabbing, imagination stoking rock sound, the band is poised to release its new album this month. One highly anticipated release we join Eric to look into its body and character with more besides…

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Howdy Eric Gynan here from the band Leaving Eden, Boston Mass area USA. It’s great to talk with you again. I think it was a couple years ago when we chatted last.

To remind people can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all?

Myself and Eve are the co-founders of Leaving Eden We had some songs; I’ve always been recording so we wanted to play some of these live. I think one must make a choice as to what they want to do with their life. It takes sacrifice, let downs and one must have a thick skin. Let’s face it most artists are different than others, so not only is there issues with all the variables outside the band, but from within too. I think the current line-up is great where everyone sees the bigger picture.

What are the musical backgrounds to you all; previous bands, projects etc…

Yes myself and Eve were in a band before leaving Eden. The band was regionally successful, but it usually comes down to the members. I remember for instance the drummer wanted no part of having a female in the band. He just hated it. Well, I saw the bigger picture, and after the first 100 people came up to me and told me how great Eve was, I knew I had to really do something about it…Shortly after we formed Leaving Eden.

Tell us about the band name?

We thought that this planet being the entire Garden of Eden has become corrupt full of Deceit and Hate so we thought wouldn’t it be nice to go somewhere else that’s the name leaving Eden.

Did you have a particular aim for the band initially and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Originally we wanted two female singers that never seemed to work out. Eve was really 2nd to none when it came to a front person, so anyone else up there trying to almost compete was pretty much a ridiculous situation. Now we do have another female, but she plays keys and sings backup vocals so it’s different now. I can’t stress enough how important it is to have not only the right people for the right sound, but the right personalities for perseverance.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

I think so. I think we are a little more reality oriented and understand more the barriers and pitfalls associated with the business. I think more so now we’re happy doing what we’re doing instead of being unhappy about not achieving our goals to the fullest.

How do you see the evolution of the band’s sound since starting out?

I think first and foremost you must always be listening to what’s out there what’s current what’s new and changing with the times. Also, one must try and be a trendsetter. It’s the new artists that forge the future, the ones out there in the gutters so to speak who are really at the pinnacle. As I said, for me I listen and get these songs kind of fully produced in my mind’s eye and I just go with the flow.

So it is a more organic movement of sound than deliberately wanting to try new things or an equally sided process?

Good question maybe both. We always want to try new things but also I think organically speaking the band naturally moves in a particular direction.

You said you eagerly listen to the sounds out there; are particular inspirations which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating music?

I think playing I’m sharing the stage with many of the best bands in the world has definitely been a great influence on us. Leaving Eden has toured the USA, UK and Canada sharing the stage with hundreds of the biggest national bands in the world including; Lacuna Coil, In This Moment, Black Sabbath (Heaven & Hell), Ronnie James Dio, Rob Zombie, 5 Finger DeathPunch, Disturbed, Marilyn Manson, Alice Cooper, Lynyrd Skynyrd, ZZTop, Puddle of Mudd, Korn, Killswitch Engage, Buckcherry (Jefferson Starship, Big Brother and The Holding Company, Country Joe, 10 Years After, 40th Anniversary Woodstock) Shinedown, Dropkick Murphy’s, Alice in Chains, Papa Roach, Bret Michaels, Halestorm,Theory of a Deadman, Avenged Sevenfold, Seether, Hell Yeah, Trapt, Dope, Soil, Fuel, Queensryche, Saving Abel, Hinder, Damage Plan, 7Dust, Sebastian Bach, SoulFly, Days of the New, NonPoint, DrowningPool, The Misfits, The Butcher Babies, Collective Soul, MushroomHead, Mudvayne, Chevelle, Godsmack, Powerman 5000, 10Years, Taproot, Gin Blossoms, Michael Schenker (UFO, MSG & The Scorpions) Herman Rarebell (The Scorpions), Nicko McBrain (Iron Maiden), Kittie, One eyed doll, Uncle Kracker, Tremonti (Creed/Alterbridge) Lamb of god, Slayer, Stone Sour, Motorhead, Blackstone Cherry, HOOKERS & BLOW Featuring GUNS N’ ROSES, QUIET RIOT, W.A.S.P. Members, Steven Tyler, Ted Nugent, Lita Ford, LA Guns, Trixter, Warrant, Apocalyptic Review (featuring members of Godsmack) Adelitas Way, Scott Stapp (The voice of Creed), Gemini Syndrome, Pop Evil, Ratt, Anthrax, Testament, Napalm Death & many more..

How does the songwriting work within the band; is there a particular process?

Yes I think it’s best for me as the songwriter to make a connection with the universe and listen because there’s always songs out there trying to come in; it depends if they come while I’m sleeping and I have the ability to wake up from that and go record something or if it comes while just almost meditating and communicating again with the universe and just listening.

How about the sparks to the lyrical side of your songs?

It’s definitely drawn from reality; all the lyrics are based on what’s happening at the time. Good, bad or indifferent I’m constantly writing lyrics so it’s going back to those and using them for music that I may already have written or writing the music around those lyrics. The skies aren’t always blue, thus our song Skies of Grey. “It’s not too late to open your eyes and sail through skies of grey”. “We’ve been screwed overcharged underpaid and abused, we’ve been exploited avoided and falsely accused, we’ve been cut down let down fucked around, tied and bound but NOTHING could take the music away”. From our Tied and Bound album.

Tell us about the band’s latest release?

Our latest release would be our last album Out of the Ashes (Recorded/mixed By Johnny K. (Disturbed, Pop Evil, Staind, 3 Doors Down,) Mastered by Brad Blackwood (Sevendust, Dave Mathews, Adelitas way, Korn) and produced by myself reinterpreted by Leaving Eden.) We also released a single, Jailbreak and it is going to be on our new album to be released October 19th 2018 called Descending again through Dark Star Records/Sony Music worldwide.

Our new album to be released, Descending, I’m excited about this album because it was recorded at Leaving Eden Studios. We were able to take all the time we needed and really craft this album to exactly what we wanted it to be. I did a premix on it and sent it off to Bob St John for the Final Mix and Mastering. Bob is a Grammy award-winning engineer and has done bands like Duran Duran, Extreme, Collective Soul, Steven Tyler…Such a great guy to work with too.

Can you give us some insight to the themes and premise behind Descending and its songs.

The title Descending, is taken from a song off the album called Shallow Waters. Shallow Waters is very cool because it’s one of those songs where I woke up from a dream and the song was playing in my head; this happens a lot most of the time I can’t pull myself out but this time I was able to. It’s great when you can hear songs already produced in your dreams, takes a lot of work out of it. It definitely comes from somewhere else. We wanted to have different genres such as heavy, acoustic, different key changes and tempos, really trying to have such diversity. We even got some songs you can dance to the beat.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

Yes because studio time is so expensive it’s really best to have it all complete so we have typically recorded the entire album in our studio first working out all the bugs and adding everything we want to add so that when it comes time in the studio we know exactly what we’re doing because there’s usually not as much time as you need, so you try to prepare for that. In the case of our Descending album soon-to-be-released we actually recorded this completely in our studio so we had the time to really craft what we believe is a great album.

 Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the favourite aspect of the band?

Yes when I have always said that Leaving Eden is best seen and heard live. There’s a lot of energy sharing that goes on with the crowd. We don’t look at it like hey man look at me I’m a rock star check me out I’m too cool man, rather quite the opposite. It’s like hey we’re all here together all night to have a good time so let’s party together and let’s have some fun together. We are all involved in this.

You obviously know how hard it is for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it with Leaving Eden?

Really I think with the onslaught of the internet anywhere you are you can really make a mark. I get it that making a mark by playing the venues that’s in your own region could make a difference. The reality is that if you’re good, fresh, have really put some time into the band look and made a great recording then it doesn’t really matter where you are. You can get it out there with a good publicist, good radio guy, good record label and good distribution also good management. We’ve pretty much always taken care of all of this on our own and hiring certain people and companies. I think it all works together. The most important thing for us is we will play anywhere anyhow anyway, so long as we can because this is what we love to do

You mentioned the internet. How do you work and weave your social media sites to use them most effectively?

The internet is very important to any band because that’s where people are getting most of their information now from and you can do it for free and make an impact on different social media platforms for sure. At the end of the day it comes down to a song, is the song good; is it one somebody wants to listen to? Our song Out Of The Ashes says digging deeper underground faster than the speed of sound. What that means is I feel we’ve always been an underground type band, you know really building its base of friends organically so an underground band able to, with the click of a mouse be in China for instance so that is faster than the speed of sound. It’s definitely referencing the internet and for that you can’t even quantify how important it is when talking about streaming on Spotify, iTunes, Amazon. You know that’s the way people are listening to the music they’re not going out and spending money to pay for music when they can listen to it for free or maybe $10 a month. Now this doesn’t really pay the artist much but if your song caught on and you had millions of listeners every day well then you would be making a lot of money so it’s really the same, only different is the means. People will still buy CDs more at a gig than anywhere else.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add?

Well, without our friends, we got nothing so we hope to make new friends here and hope they enjoy learning more about Leaving Eden. We definitely want to say Thanx Much and Peace!!

https://www.leavingeden.com/   https://www.facebook.com/bandleavingeden   https://www.instagram.com/leavingedenofficial/   https://twitter.com/Leavingeden   https://www.youtube.com/user/leavingedenband

Pete RingMaster 02/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

 

Bullets And Octane – Waking Up Dead

Though a name familiar to a great many, attention on the UK side of The Pond did not particularly have Bullets And Octane as a concentrated spot on its radar despite some ear grabbing, appetising inciting releases since the band emerged in 2003. That was until the LA based outfit played a venue ripping tour over here last year with our own fine middle finger raising rockers Hung Like Jack supporting. It has sparked fresh interest and in turn real anticipation for the US rockers’ new album Waking Up Dead which we seriously expect to be embracing rigorous attention upon release. It is a beast of an album, rock ‘n’ roll in its most rapacious and rousing form and without doubt Bullets And Octane in their finest moment.

From the release of their debut EP, One Night Stand Rock N Roll Band in 2003, the St. Louis originating quartet has been on a hungry ride towards acclaim and attention. Their Gilby Clark of Guns And Roses produced first album, The Revelry started the growing appetite for their emergence, each of their subsequent seven albums escalating the temptation, including breakthrough album In The Mouth Of The Young, alongside a live presence which has seen the sharing of stages at shows and festivals with the likes of Avenged Sevenfold, Korn, Stone Sour, Flyleaf, Deftones, Unwritten Law, Gunfire 76, Social Distortion, Eagles Of Death Metal and many more over the years. Now we would suggest they are facing their biggest year and time yet with the release of the Brent Clawson (Wednesday 13, Hell or Highwater, The Knives) produced, recorded, mixed and mastered Waking Up Dead, a slab of devilry declaring that hard rock spun rock ‘n’ roll has never been healthier or more fun.

As soon as Bad Mother Fucker launches its attitude loaded stomp off of a warning siren, it has to said, ears and appetite were swiftly gripped; a hold tightening as the track almost stalks ears with riffs and grooves whilst stirring up the spirit with its contagious roar. Vocalist Gene Louis hollers at its heart with energy and contempt, the band’s united calls supporting his incitement as the swinging beats of Jonny Udell punch and Zachary Kibbee’s bass magnetically grumbles.

A raucously irresistible start to the album aflame with the wiry tendrils of Felipe Rodrigo’s guitar, the track sets the anthemic template for things to come and is quickly embraced by the album’s following title track. Guitar and mass incitement instantly draws ears into the almost as immediate blaze of the song, its pulsating stroll and fiery sonic flames surging straight to the instincts to rock out. There is a devious craft and imagination to the song though, predacious twists and tenacious clamours uniting in its spirit rousing exploits.

The calmer but no less lusty When We Were Young has the body bouncing again, it’s gripping hard rock nurtured canter almost poppy but all raw bustle and bite while Burning at Both Wicks jabs and snaps at the senses from its first touch, takes the listener on a bold hard rock infested ride thereon in. As the whole of the album, the songs blend the familiar with the boldly fresh in their individual escapades, each nagging to get under the skin riff by hook and hitting their target in swift time. It really was impossible not to offer up one’s own vocal and physical participation across the whole of Waking Up Dead as proven yet again by the simply captivating Fires. As its predecessor, there is a touch of Fall Out Boy meets Grumpynators to the track with a whiff of Turbonegro, a spicing which slipped through our ears like nectar.

All the same, every song within the album is stamped Bullets And Octane through to the core, the likes of the melodically aflame Fuck You Song and Murder Me Baby with its predatory prowl and salacious swing diverse proof. Neither track quite hit the personal spot as those around them actually but the fact they had us rocking and pressing replay with perpetually fresh lust shows the might of the rest of the album.

The final trio of tracks keep the stomping and thick enjoyment flying, Rolling Stone casting a ‘mellow’, in comparison to other songs, incitement which only needed a clutch of seconds to bypass inhibitions before Hostage seduced the body into a subservient sway. Even with its relative composure, the song is an insatiable rocker increasing its boisterousness and the listener’s involvement by the minute.

Heart Attack completes the release, the track maybe the best of the lot though it is hard to choose. Hooks and grooves ensnare as rhythms jab, vocals stoking up devilment and alone further involvement; the four prong rock ‘n’ roll attack as manipulative as it is simply balls swinging revelry. A great album deserves a thunderous end and Waking Up Dead certainly gets that though its whole body is a galvanic storm of rock ‘n’ roll; a tempest of pleasure we can only suggest, wherever you are, you should unleash your rocker instincts upon.

Waking Up Dead is released May 25th through Bad MoFo Records/Cargo Records.

https://www.bulletsmusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/bulletsandoctane

Pete RingMaster 23/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Crushing landscapes with US metallers Backblast

US outfit, Backblast, create a heavy metal roar embracing the flames of other styles and flavours. It is a proposition which is constantly growing and evolving as well as building on the success of the Manassas, VA hailing band’s well received debut EP, of 2015, The Area is Clear. We recently had the chance to get to the heart of the band with drummer Chris Tamberella, exploring its origins, growth, the band’s latest attention drawing release and more….

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started?

We are a five piece metal band consisting of Dan Cunningham on vocals, Jake Ford on  lead guitar, Adam Pritcher on rhythm guitar and backup vocals, Wilsen Rivera on bass and myself, Chris Tamberella on drums. In 2015 Dan and I, along with original guitarist Marcos Eguia, began recording tracks in Dan’s basement. After 6 months of writing and recording, we decided to bring the studio to the stage.

Had you been involved in other bands before?

Wilsen has been in a number of projects including Kaemon, Bourne of Ash, Greythor, Pandora’s Box, Sanguinus and some solo work on Wilsen’s Sessions.  Dan was is a heavy metal band in Newport News, VA called Kaivol Motak who enjoyed local success.  Jake was in a band for a few years in high school and since has filled in periodically for the Miami based band Inferion.

What inspired the band name?

The majority of our band members are military veterans and have experienced the back blast of an RPG before.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

There was no specific sound that we targeted at first. We played what came naturally which was best described as rock. After recording The Area is Clear, we wanted to add more to our sound but didn’t know exactly what we were looking for. Enter Adam Pritcher and his heavy riffs and we were on our way to making metal songs. Since then we added Wilsen on bass which opened the doors for another evolution in the band with his ability and experience. The final piece to our sound is the addition of Jake Ford. Adding a lead guitar to our sound has provided more opportunities for growth and another evolution in our sound. With the addition of Jake we are steering in somewhat of a power and progressive metal sound. Who knows what we will create in the future.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

Our band has evolved in all aspects including what drives us now. As a band we want to push ourselves and churn out the best sound possible. That can only occur if we are all driven individually and as a unit. When we started in Dan’s basement we were messing around and seeing what came out. Right now we feel like the sky is the limit between the five of us and are excited for our next release and to continue bringing our brand of metal live on the east coast.

Has it been organic, especially the movement of sound or more the band deliberately wanting to try new things?

Everything that happens with our sound is organic and nothing is forced. We certainly want to try new things but we haven’t limited ourselves into what we are trying. If it feels right we move forward. If it’s clunky or not smooth than we move on to something else.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

With five guys in the band there are many different inspirations. We all share some of the same likes such as Black Sabbath, Dio, Lamb of God, Iced Earth but some of us like reggae, jazz, classical music, electronic music and more. For myself as a drummer I am inspired by Chris Adler of Lamb of God and Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan of Avenged Sevenfold.

Is there a general process to the band’s songwriting? 

Most of our songs are based off guitar riffs. Sometimes that riff is structured before it comes into the band room or it may just be a small riff that starts with a jam session and grows into a full track.

And lyrically, where do you draw the inspirations?

Past experience, current political climate and what happens inside Dan’s head (which could be scary).

Would you give us some background to your latest release?

Our latest release is a four song concept EP, The Ringmaster. It revolves around an evil entity “The Ringmaster” who has pulled in all the outsiders of society and placed them under his spell. He lures with them with the promise of hope and acceptance but his true motive is to create an army of minions. After realizing their fate those who have come under his power rise up to fight back. In this story the good guys just might not win.

Give us some insight to the premise behind its songs.

The first song, The Ringmaster, tells the story of our protagonist and gives the listener a hint of his plan. Next is To the Grave which lets the newly acquired minions understand what is actually in store for them under the big top. The third track Uprising is when the battle begins. The minions have come together to throw down with “The Ringmaster” for an epic battle of good and evil. Our battle finally comes to a bloody finish with Bend the Knee. Who will be left standing?

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

We are 100% ready to record each track when entering the studio. Studio time is a pricey endeavour and we don’t like to burn money. The blade is sharpened before we hit record.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably a favourite aspect of the band?

Our live shows are our bread and butter. I promise you will not be bored. At one point you could be two feet away from a slinging guitar or about have Dan singing in your face. Our shows require audience participation and I promise you won’t be able to resist joining in.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods?

Our region has had a recent bump in the past year but it is an uphill battle. The underground metal scene has some very strong bands and personalities but the only way we grow is standing side by side. We are doing our part to make sure the scene keeps pushing.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success?

At this point social media is crucial for BackBlast and for all underground bands in any genre. On one hand social media gives any band exposure that would typically cost a ton of cash for free. On the other hand our music is free. There seems to be some formula for success through social media and we are still doing the math.

 Our big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Right now you can grab a free copy of our EP, The Ringmaster, by going to our Facebook page. Give it a like, and shoot us a message to get your free download code!

Pete RingMaster 02/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

I Fight Bears – Self Titled

An encounter which just grows in strength and persuasion with every listen, the self-titled debut album from Welsh metallers I Fight Bears is an ear grabbing statement of potential and success. Brewing a healthy blend of the familiar and fresh, it is a declaration of a band with all the weaponry to make a potent impact on the British metal scene.

Hailing from Bridgend, I Fight Bears draw on the inspirations of bands such as Killswitch Engage, Parkway Drive, and Lamb Of God for their voracious sound. It is not necessarily the most unique proposal you will come up against yet each song within the band’s first album has a freshness and adventure which commands attention. Since emerging around two years ago, the band has stirred ears and praise with their singles and a live presence which has taken them alongside the likes of When We Were Wolves, Skies In Motion, and Perpetua. Predominately self-recorded by the band itself with Micheal Paget (Bullet For My Valentine) involved on some songs for both mastering and mixing, their first album is a big nudge at richer and thicker attention and instantly makes a potent impact.

It opens with the mighty Hammers, melodic enticement and hungry rhythms instantly to the fore before it all unites for a rapacious and inviting enticement. A great blend of throat scraping and clean vocals grab their own healthy portion of attention soon after, the excellent mix matched by the predacious craft of the rhythms and creative weave of the guitars. Infectious and intimidating, it is a great start to the release; as suggested familiar and new imagination entangling in magnetic success.

Upcoming single, Envision, follows sharing melodic vines which maybe are not the most original but make a tasty appetiser for the blossoming enterprise of the song to flourish upon, again vocals captivating at the heart of the creative web. As the guitars weave, rhythms pounce with an anthemic touch, fiery grooves and spicy hooks latching onto their intrusive swing. With a touch of Avenged Sevenfold to it, the song hits the spot before making way for the band’s current single, Lost The Fight. The track’s roar is unleashed on a snare of grooves and sonic temptation, their enticing bait laid on the more volatile but no less gripping lure of the rhythms. I Fight Bears have a multi-flavoured surge of sound at the heart of all songs and maybe none as compelling as that fuelling this very easy to devour proposal, especially as it grows more predatory by the minute.

Design And Purpose carries that intrusive intent into its following proposition, beats and bass a grumbling trespass soon bound in melodic strands with their own imposing touch. Vocals blast the mix with a raw emotive breath, the song a predacious assault before opening up its melodic dexterity as clean vocals again provide a superb contrast matched by the endeavour of the guitars. As imposing and catchy as its predecessors, the track is a just as inviting lead into the band and its sound, quickly matched in that quality by Life Of One. Another smart weave of styles and sound bound in an adventurous intent, the song a swift and increasing captivation epitomising the band’s craft in songwriting, performance, and imagination.

It is fair to say that next up Disposed did not grab our ears as dramatically as those before it, surprises less open yet it is a richly satisfying and intriguing encounter with vocals once more especially magnetic before Trust thrusts its rousing prowess through ears. Rhythms harry and punish the senses as raw vocals graze their surface, an appetite stirring mix only enhanced by the melodic and harmonic tenacity of guitars and the cleaner side of the two pronged vocal persuasion. Barbarous yet seductive, the song is superb and only escalates in captivation with every subsequent twist.

From the cantankerously wired Exhale, an incendiary slice of metal with a hardcore lining that is as irritable as it is infectious, and the senses crushing tempest of Smoking Gun, the album hits another high spot to rival its early plateau. Both songs are a cauldron of what the band does best and right to the fore of our favourite moments, their might leaving System a task to bring things to a just as potent close which it does with its own corrosive furnace of enterprise and power. The trio alone leave ears and pleasure full with a hunger for more in close attention.

With the realisation of their inescapable potential and a real vein of individuality, I Fight Bears could become a real presence within the broadest metal scene. Their thickly enjoyable first album already declares the band one exciting prospect on that British landscape.

The I Fight Bears album is out now.

http://www.facebook.com/ifightbearsband   http://www.twitter.com/ifightbearsband   http://www.instagram.com/ifightbears

Pete RingMaster 20/02/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Nika Riots – Set Fire

Having found the Norwegian hardcore scene a rather fruitful place to excite personal tastes, there was a definite twinge of eager anticipation when we found ourselves receiving he debut EP from Oslo outfit The Nika Riots, especially upon seeing it features members from bands such as Man the Machetes, Torch, and IEatHeartAttacks. The prospect of hearing something flavoursome to really get the teeth into was quickly confirmed by Set Fire and only reinforced across its six ferocious tracks.

Consisting of Christopher Iversen (Man The Machetes), Jørgen Berg (Torch), Kristen Fjeldstad, Morten Vikanes, and Noppers Myren (IEatHeartAttacks), The Nika Riots fuse their hardcore with voracious metal essences while drawing on the inspirations of bands such as Every Time I Die, the Dillinger Escape Plan, and Rise Against for its still individual character. It is a mix which grooves like a Bokassa, snarls like a Shevils, and has the irritable melodic punk fuelled fury of Bad Religion aligned to the unpredictable dexterity of Every Time I Die and all delivered with a defiant antagonism living up to the historical unrest behind their name. Those metal bred essences add yet another aspect to their sound, a hungry trespass which accentuates every other thread in its fractious web.

As soon as the rousing rhythmic invitation of Anti-Social Social Club was launched within a raw sonic breath attention was grabbed, the initial handful of seconds of the opener a welcoming intrusion which swiftly becomes a tirade of addictive grooves, thumping beats, and vocal argument. The track proceeds to swing along with intrusive hardcore tenacity, inciting ears and spirit at every turn with the imagination hooked by its melodic punk hues. Metal textures equally give it a diverse nature and potency as the song gets Set Fire off to a heady start.

A chest beating roar of defiance, it is pretty much matched by the following Knock ‘em Dead. Straight away it is sharing solicitous hooks, a touch of Billy talent in their spicing before its punk canter brings a great bend of throat scarring and melodically sandy vocals. As in its predecessor, attitude fuels every note and syllable, the melodies even carrying a slight toxic edge to their temptation but it all combining for another fiercely infectious affair before allowing the excellent Kill This Chaos emerges from its last sonic sigh on a rhythmic roll. This leads to another contagious intrusion equipped with hungrily anthemic rhythms, vocal irritancy, and caustic riffs. It is pure magnetism, especially when the incitement of drums and throb of bass only accompanies raw throated appeals, guitars accentuating the bait on their return with strains of heavy metal in their attack.

A melancholic melodic caress opens up Hanged Drawn & Quartered but all time becoming dirtier and unsettled before breaking into punk thrusting rock ‘n roll though that too is only another shade to the song as melodic metal essences take their moment to captivate. It epitomises the fluid resourcefulness of the band’s sound, a quality as open if not to the same prevalence within next up Skeleton Crew. Opening with an Avenged Sevenfold scented beckoning, the song soon rattles the cages with its hardcore guile and fury lined acuteness aligned to punk rock virulence.

All Hail the Queen completes the attack, its body breeding its own fusion of sound and enterprise. As the previous track, it did not quite light the fires as dramatically as those before them but with vines of grooves wrapping round the ears and a rich bluster of energy wearing the senses, it simply left pleasure and appetite hungry for more.

Set Fire is a striking introduction to The Nika Riots hinting at even bigger and bolder exploits ahead whilst stirring the passion and instincts for uncompromising punk rock; Norwegian hardcore continues to impress and excite.

Set Fire is released January 19th through Negative Vibe Records.

https://www.facebook.com/thenikariots/

Pete RingMaster 18/01/2018

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Xerosun – This Dark Rage

Photography by Olga Kuzmenko

Time for another catch up moment, this time with the This Dark Rage EP from Irish melodic death metallers Xerosun released a handful of months back. It is fair to say that since we covered and enjoyed the band’s debut album Absence of Light way back in 2011, they and their sound have quite simply evolved into completely new attention grabbing beasts, changes and evolution leading to their latest impressive  proposition more than deserving of a belated look.

With a just as hungry progressive bent to their ravenous sound, the Dublin quintet has persistently drawn greater praise and support in recent times. Building on previous successes like that first album and sharing stages with the likes of Avenged Sevenfold, Soulfly, Xerath, and In This Moment, the past two years have been exceptionally busy for Xerosun. Two headline UK tours have been accompanied by performances at festivals such as Mammothfest and Siege of Limerick, times capped off by the release of EP/mini album This Dark Rage and the Olga Kuzmenko created video for its title track, both themed around the Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour, a subject set to be further explored in the band’s new album set for later this year.

This Dark Rage opens with that title track, vocalist Martyna Halas-Yeates’ raw throated scowls courted by the predatory prowl of guitars and rhythms; it all soaked in venom and spite. As riffs continue to gnaw and beats stab, the primal instincts of the track suddenly flip into a groove driven canter, Halas-Yeates’ tones becoming a siren of beauty before the beast returns in voice and song again. The rapier like jabs of drummer Damian Dziennik hold even more spite while David Kuchar’s bass is savage in tone and flirtatious in swing matching the now established web of hostility and grooving. It is a compelling blend and result, the guitars of Fiachra Kelly and Gareth Jeffs rich in craft and enterprise while Halas-Yeates captivates in her dual persona. She is angel and demon and though her melodic prowess feels more natural, her vocal causticity only convinces within the adventurous tapestry around her, wicked grooves deviously colouring the unfolding lyrical drama.

Anatomy of a Lie follows the great start, even overshadowing it as it creates its own groove sculpted temptation, one again bred from ruinous fractions of intent and a blossoming of magnetic melodies and harmonic flames again led by Halas-Yeates’ kind side. It is a song which has grown and evolved since its first outing within a great video back in 2013 and another sign of the band’s hunger to grow and draw every ounce of their imagination to the fore. As all tracks, it is a fusion of flavours beyond the description we first gave you, a controlled but bold maelstrom of antipathy and warmth lighting the senses much as the tempest within next up I Spared Hundreds succeeds in. With electronic essences almost taunting ears from its shadows, the song is a carnal provocation with a relatively latent but openly glimpsed peace. Harmonies and keys temper the cancerous instincts surrounding them, while imagination is an increasingly riveting trait in the song as innocence and insanity mingle in the corners of its psychosis.

The release is brought to a close by firstly The Mother of Morality, a corrosive web of sound with Middle Eastern veining radiated in suggestive melodies and vocal elegance. At times it is like a mix of The Agonist and Motherjane, in other moments more Scar Symmetry and Arch Enemy nurtured, and quite beguiling. As the EP, the track just grows with every listen, the enjoyment of its first appraisal becoming more lustful and impressed with every venture into its passionately lit caverns.

Repent, Rewind, Reset brings it all to an end, its seven minutes plus a spiral into emotional and mental turbulence matched by a soundscape of volatile and schizophrenic sound. Though for whatever reason the track does not grab as powerfully as its predecessors, it makes for a fine and fascinating conclusion to a release which only impresses more and more. Xerosun is a band on the ascent with a potential driven, imagination powered sound to match.

This Dark Rage is available on CD and download @ https://xerosun.bandcamp.com/

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

Pete RingMaster 31/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright