From Sorrow To Serenity – Antithesis

FSTS

As ravenous and barbaric as a tornado but with the passionate insatiability of a tsunami, the Antithesis EP from Scottish metallers From Sorrow To Serenity is a striking ruthless ferocity wrapped in a scorching melodic elegance and rapacious imagination. Consisting of four merciless confrontations, the release is the debut of a band metal we will all be taking intensive attention of, if not now certainly in the near future as the Glasgow quintet build on their powerful and impressive entrance.

Formed in 2010 by the core of vocalist Fraser Smith alongside guitarists Steven Jones and Mark McInch, From Sorrow To Serenity  have earned a formidable reputation for their unbridled mesh of metalcore ripe with flames of progressive, groove, and technical metal; a colossal recipe which has fuelled their intensively impacting live show. Sharing stages with the likes of Memphis May Fire, Bleed From Within, Stray From The Path, The Color Morale and many more across Scotland, the band has continued to impress and strengthen their stature and explosive presence, bassist Andrew Simpson and drummer Matthew Cowie completing the potent line-up challenging and invigorating the senses. Following their recent successful showing at Techabilitation where the band played with the likes of Meta-stasis, Nexilva, Visions, and Aeolist, the Antithesis EP is the next heavy swipe at the nation, one you can only imagine leading the band to the strongest positive responses.

The title track instantly tells you all you need to know about From Sorrow To Serenity, Antithesis emerging from a sonic brew a0430344357_2designed by the guitars to launch a savage and riveting exploitation of the band’s craft and maliciousness. The track is a carnivore, riffs and rhythms a ravaging creative spite cloaked in a sonic seduction which scorches as it tempts. The technical enticement is equally as predacious and addictive, the band coaxing out a rapturous hunger for its towering and erosive presence whilst the vocals of Smith squall with as much animosity as that provided by the rhythms. It is a hypnotic fury completed with twisted grooves which swing with a compelling swagger from within the inventive and exciting maelstrom. The outstanding track never relinquishes being the finest moment on the release though it is constantly challenged by the remaining trio of songs.

The following Synergy approaches the ears with an electro cast ambience, an industrial lilted embrace not long alone as djent splintered rhythms and grooves encroach and prowl around the immersive evocative canvas. Into its full storm the song has less clarity to its individual elements than the first song but spawns intensive sonic smog which consumes and ignites the senses once again. It is a viscous encounter but one which flows with enticing ease as it intertwines aggressive rabidity and emotive suffocation into its exhausting melody stretched torrent.

Dead Reign is another to lend a gentle, in this case crystalline bait to lure the listener into a subsequent voracious furnace of intensity and emotional savagery. The track is a hypnotic and ferocious slab of sonic alchemy, an ever evolving passage of electronic shards and kisses, Middle Eastern promise, and melodic imagination which steals the passions within the similarly infectious violent abrasiveness and straight forward voracity. It is a masterful violation, a stunning and inventive blend of extremes and opposites merged into a sonic narrative which rivals the opener and is debatably the most creative confrontation on the EP.

The release is completed by i9, a track featuring Nexilva vocalist Gaz King. It is a barbarous challenge for the senses, the guitars and bass at their most uncivil yet refined on the release and the rhythms a blur of animosity and skilled intimidation. The track does not neglect the melodic hues the band has already shown they are accomplished at exploring either, the whole result a scintillating provocation for body and mind which backs up the immense promise and presence of the band.

There is little to temper the praise for Antithesis with, a slight lack of diversity from the vocals and a production which does submerge their delivery within the sonic tempest a little too much at times the only thing to be picky about. The EP is a powerful and incredibly weighty persuasion which declares From Sorrow To Serenity as a band to expect and anticipate a dominate future from.

The Antithesis EP is available as a buy now name your price digital release from http://fromsorrowtoserenity.bandcamp.com/album/antithesis-ep

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8/10

RingMaster 28/11/2013

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Lifelines – In Presents Wake EP

Lifelines Online Promo Shot

If there is one thing which In Presents Wake, the debut EP from Scottish metallers Lifelines suggests it is that this is a band you need to see live. The intensity and aggressive energy of the six track release is a formidable hint to what you imagine their stage attack is like, though you suspect it still only touches the edges of their intensive stage presentation. The release is a fiery slab of metalcore rife with strong melodic flames and a voracious blend of rhythmic antagonism and ferocious riffery. The EP does not present Lifelines as the finished article but certainly as a band on a rapid and intensive rise with a sound to match their hunger.

The Glasgow quintet was formed in 2011 by vocalist Paul Bone, guitarist Sean Young, and drummer Jonny Macintyre. After going through multiple guitarists the line-up was completed by guitarist Adam Cosgrove and bassist Murray Paton and by the end of last year had built a strong growing reputation for their live shows which has seen them alongside bands such as Bleed From Within and Palm Reader. With In Presents Wake, the band makes its widest and strongest declaration to date, one you can easily see leading to strong acclaim and a much larger fan base for the explosive unit.

Opener Skyscrapers is an immediate pressure of rigid rhythms and eager riffing ridden by the coarse vocal attack of Bone. A Lifelines Cover Artworktimid but open groove tempts within the intensive atmosphere, the guitars crafting inviting lures into the song’s muscular body. There is a sense of Architects to the track which gives extra texture to the evocative conflict if also showing a distinct presence is still evolving for the band. With an intrigue and invention which is happy to ignore expectations the starter is a riveting entrance into band and EP.

The following Limitless is equally as magnetic without completely waking up the passions, the guitars and bass casting a web of enticing imagination and craft whilst the rhythmic enterprise of Macintyre is a bruising treat driving the track and ultimately release forward. The vocal delivery is a caustic grazing on the senses, a strong and passionate one but with a lack of diversity to Bone’s delivery it does diminish the potency of the track a little, though the incendiary guitar play and group vocal harmonies brief though they are, keep attention and thoughts captivated.

The Protagonist is an uncompromising confrontation from the start, bulging rhythms and a predacious bass prowl increasing the already eager appetite for the release whilst the sinew clad guitar invention without breaking boundaries weaves a cage around the senses and emotions which is lasting and satisfying. The EP from its strong opening does get better and more impressive song by song with this a definite marker to note, though after the brief and accomplished torrent of passion Better Left Unsaid, it is surpassed as the EP unleashes its finest moments with firstly Undertow. It is a heavily intensive tempest of enjoyment and incitement, riffs and rhythms a rapacious courting of the senses whilst the melodic endeavour paints their canvas with creative hues which ignite the imagination. The employment of cleaner vocals alongside the harsh scowls adds the extra exciting finish to the track; the earlier slightly wanted variety here alive and proving how well it works to help make the song the best and most potent encounter.

The closing triumph Silver Screen Synthetic is equally as inventive and exploratory to leave the promise and strengths of the band a raging and wholly persuasive lasting impression. Adventurous without losing sight of its intent and eager to mix things up rhythmically, melodically, and vocally, it is a contagious addiction breeding slice of brutality to complete an impressive debut.

It is fair to say that In Presents Wake does not offer anything new and that Lifelines have yet to stand out from the other strong elements of the crowd but equally it is easy to suggest that it will come, especially on the evidence of the final two tracks of the release. Though even these songs cannot hook a lingering connection once departed, in their and the band’s company they make a convincing and attention grabbing persuasion to make Lifelines a band to keep an eager eye on and definitely to catch live.

www.facebook.com/wearelifelines

7.5/10

RingMaster 16/11/2013

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Doomed From Day One – Nine Fingers

Doomed From Day One Online Promo Shot

It has been two years since the release of their acclaimed debut EP The Wasted World but on the evidence of its successor Nine Fingers, UK progressive death metallers Doomed From Day One have not been resting on its laurels. The new EP is six tracks of confronting and impacting enterprise which leaves predictability a dormant factor and intrigue a toxic substance within its consuming presence. The Surrey quintet has honed their already impressive songwriting and intensive sound into a real predator of senses and emotions, an accomplished brutality which is sculpted by feisty invention and incendiary imagination, and though arguably the new release lacks those moments which impact after the event, it is a magnetically striking and creatively dominant beast during in its company.

Formed in 2009, the Guildford band has been on a formidable rise through the ranks of UK extreme metal, their passionate fanbase recruited not only by their first release but their formidable live reputation and presence.  Through impressive shows alongside the likes of Malefice, Martyr Defiled, The Defiled, Gallows and most recently Black Dahlia Murder, Sylosis, Bleed From Within and Thy Art Is Murder, as well as world media acclaim, Doomed From Day One has earned a worldwide attention which you can only imagine the strength of Nine Fingers will cement and accelerate. Released as the band share dates with Red Seas Fire and Fathoms, the EP confirms Doomed From Day One as one of the most potent, imagination tipping encounters with an immense depth of promise.

The title track opens up the release; an enthralling instrumental which introduces itself and the album with a sunrise of excellent guitar Doomed From Day One Cover Artworktemptation and orchestral bred elegance. It then evolves into a fire borne sonic blaze of craft and evocative textures whilst melodic flames scorch the ears for a wholly persuasive invitation into the release and the following Cut And Hunt. The second track takes little time in testing the senses with a crippling array of spiteful rhythms, corrosive riffery, and equally caustic gutturally primed vocals from Sean Scott. The track rages and ravages with craft and malevolence but equally exports a range of hooks and barbed grooves which dig deep and contagiously from within the dangerous tempest. It is a breath-taking companion which increases it’s tempting further with an excellently progressive, almost avant-garde teasing from the guitars of Charlie Griffiths and Charlie Frederick which evolves from their persistently impressive skills.

The immense full start to Nine Fingers is backed up by At Graves End, a song which falls short of the plateau just set but creates its own unique stature of imaginative and mercurial invention. As the drums of Daniel Ristic sculpt a web of bone splintering craft and force, the guitars again send spirals of sonic ingenuity through the heart of the vitriolic intensive track whilst vocals quall and scar the surface of the ear with the great tones Scott first successfully unveiled on the EPs predecessor. Creatively antagonistic and fuelled by enthralling enterprise, the song drifting into a progressive jazz spawned landscape at one point before returning as ferocious and dramatically impacting as it started, there is little to dismiss about the track but it does like most of the others lack that ignition to remain a potent instigator away from its destructive arms.

The Promise does verge on that break through, the delicious irritant of flesh scorching sonic toxicity and rhythmic barbarism a vicious alchemy which lays down the strongest inventive bait upon the EP. With the bass of Eifion Sweet prowling with predatory glee and menace across its length, the track like its predecessor is unafraid to explore a slower melodic beauty and progressive tapestry. The skill of the band and the imaginative songwriting is impressive and again bordering spellbinding but still without that lingering claw for the mind, though when it sounds this good in the claws of the song and EP is it really an issue?

Dread and In This Life Not The Next complete the release; the first an insatiable fury of lethal rhythms and riveting riffing which is just as inciting through its mordant touch with the vocals of Scott a ferocious maelstrom of passion and maliciousness upon the outstanding blend of vindictive and seductive musical craft. Personal favourite of all the tracks, it spears the body with imaginative violence to provoke the strongest satisfaction before its successor finishes things off with a thrilling torment sculpted by a technical fire of extreme and fertile aural retribution. The track unleashes everything which is good about the band and the release in a seven minute deeply pleasing scourge.

Nine Fingers is an excellent release which as mentioned only misses out on finding that one element which plays in thoughts and memory long after it takes its leave. All the same Doomed From Day One has created a release which when standing in front of the body feeds every want and hope for an extreme metal offering whilst reinforcing the band as one of the finest and most promising to emerge in the UK in recent years.

http://www.doomedfromdayone.co.uk/

8/10

RingMaster 21/10/2013

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LIFELINES unveil first EP ‘In presents wake’, on 18th November‏

Lifelines Online Promo Shot
SCOTTISH METAL COMBO LIFELINES NATIONALLY RELEASE DEBUT EP!
 
Glaswegian metal outfit ‘Lifelines’ are rapidly etching a prominent name for themselves. Dishing up ear shattering shows that clearly mark their intention and convey their manifesto, the rising quintet are poised to hurl themselves into the national arena, ready to annihilate every sweat-pit venue along the way.
Spawned in the back streets of Glasgow, Scotland, Lifelines were formed in 2011 when old band mates Paul Bone (Vocals) and Sean Young (Guitar) recruited Jonny Macintyre (Drums). The trio soon started to write and rewrite as they began to flesh out the bones for their very first record and set list. However, the early days of Lifelines posed its challenges; the band went through six guitarists in their first year, could only afford to rehearse in Jonny’s front room, had no microphones for vocals and had only a make shift drum kit without any cymbals! But through sheer dedication and gutsy drive, the three piece pressed on, and by happenstance, they stumbled into Adam Cosgrove (Guitar) while frequenting a bar in the city; the four instantly clicked and Cosgrove joined the ranks. It wasn’t too long then before they drafted in Murray Paton (Bass) to finally complete the unit.
By the end of 2012, the aspiring five piece began to truly solidify, picking up solid underground acclaim, and scoring a feature in Front Magazine’s New & Unsigned section. The band continued their climb by hitting the road, playing throughout Scotland and supporting good friends ‘Bleed From Within’ and ‘Palm Reader’ along the way. Lifeline’s shows are now fast becoming notorious for their intensity and full-hearted delivery. The Metal crew will tour again this Autumn in support of their debut record ‘In Presents Wake’.
The band’s debut EP ‘In Presents Wake’ is stuffed to the gills with blistering riffs and pounding beats. Lifelines have pulled down their live energy to tape and the EP perfectly captures the band as they are best heard: live and in your face. From the unbridled ballsy vigor of ‘Subcitizen’ through to the vicious drive of ‘The Protagonist’ and the ferociously rifftastic ‘Silver Screen Synthetic’, ‘In Presents Wake’ is a record that showcases Lifelines as a sure-to-be prominent force in the UK metal scene.
Lifelines Cover Artwork
TRACKLISTING: 1. Subcitzen; 2. Limitless; 3. The Protagonist; 4. Better Left Unsaid; 5. Undertow; 6. Silver Screen Synthetic.
BAND MEMBERS: Paul Bone – Vocals; Sean Young – Guitar; Adam Cosgrove – Guitar; Murray Paton – Bass; Jonny Macintyre – Drums.
FOR FANS OF: Architects, Misery Signals, August Burns Red.

‘Nine Fingers’ the new EP from DOOMED FROM DAY ONE out Monday 21st October‏

Doomed From Day One Online Promo Shot
THE BLISTERING NEW EP FROM DOOMED FROM DAY ONE UNLEASHED WITH A UK TOUR ANNOUNCED!!!
 
Surrey Slayers ‘Doomed From Day One’ nationally release their stunning new EP ‘Nine Fingers’ on Monday 21st October, through all digital stores.
Ascending UK noise chiefs ‘Doomed From Day One’ are swiftly ploughing through the ranks in the British metal scene and now set loose a burly slice of resourceful progressive Death Metal in the shape of their sophomore EP ‘Nine Fingers’.
Spawned from the depths of Surrey, and born at the end of 2009, Guildford riff slingers Doomed From Day One have quickly assembled an army of fans by constantly touring. And word is now rapidly starting to spread about the band’s intense live shows. Adding further weight to their cause, the ferocious five-some have recently supported The Black Dahlia Murder, Sylosis, Bleed From Within and Thy Art Is Murder, and the boys head out on the road again with Red Seas Fire and Fathoms this Autumn (see tour dates below).
Besides their noteworthy affection for and commitment to touring through the country’s highways and byways, Doomed From Day One have also garnered critical acclaim for their debut EP ‘The Wasted World’, chalking up lofty support from Metal Hammer, Kerrang!, Big Cheese and Zero Tolerance Magazine, as well as acquiring widespread radio airplay from Total Rock/Bloodstock Radio.
Doomed From Day One surge onwards again with the official release of their stunning new EP ‘Nine Fingers’ which immediately grabs your interest as the opening track and namesake ‘Nine Fingers’ takes you from hauntingly beautiful acoustics to pummeling guitars in a heartbeat. The pace continues with the guttural attack of ‘Cut and Hunt’, framed by sledge-hammer beats and blistering guitar parts. The magnificently proggy ‘At Graves End’ is next up, and it duly wraps its crawls around your ears to stunning effect. ‘The Promise’ is a blistering full frontal blast of Thrashcore, complete with a captivating interlude highlighting that DFDO can throw away the blueprint for any genre. ‘Dread’ further cements the bruisers place as real contenders as its amps up on the brutality, with deep growls that stem from the pits of hell. Finally, ‘In This Life Not The Next’ draws the record to a close as it displays the southern metalheads’ shrewd craft for shaping a gargantuan beast of a tune complete with thoughtful arrangements. This record will stomp its way through your cranium, leaving you with a sizable indent; Doomed From Day One will surely leave their mark.

DOOMED FROM DAY ONE LIVE: September with ‘Red Seas Fire’: 4th – South Sea Live, Sheffield*; 5th – Zombie Hut, Corby; 6th – Soundhouse, Leicester; 7th – Ivy Leaf, Sheerness; 8th – Intake Bar, Mansfield. October with ‘Fathoms’: 22nd – Scream Lounge, Croydon (EP Release show)**; 23rd – South Sea Live, Sheffield; 24th – The North Wales Inn, Rhyl; 25th – The Frog & Nightgown, Worksop; 26th – The Derby, Barrow In Furness.

 

*Without Red Seas Fire; **Without Fathoms.

 Doomed From Day One Cover Artwork
 
 

Insentient – Remnants EP

INSENTIENT-

The meaning of the name of Los Angeles based blackened death metallers Insentient means ‘devoid of sensation or consciousness; inanimate,’ something you certainly cannot apply to their debut EP Remnants. The six song release is a dramatic and exhausting piece of emotive enterprise and evocative intrusiveness, a heavy shadowed expanse of exploitive and scintillating provocation exploring and inspiring the psyche of its recipients with relish and skilled venom. The release and band has earned comparisons in many ways to the likes of Death, Hypocrisy, and Dissection, something which is hard to argue over but with essences of neo-classical and thrash to their imaginative ideas and craft the band stands apart from the crowd with a unique and expressive presence.

The band was formed in 2009 by vocalist/guitarist Leslie Medina with the line-up of Medina, guitarist Kimberly Orellana, bassist William Palacios-Toledo, and drummer James Coppolino in place from the early part of last year. With a stable line-up in place the band has begun to make a stronger impressive mark which Remnants will only send deeper into the heart of melodic extreme metal.

Wrapped in the excellent artwork of UK artist Thomas Bates, who has graced releases from the likes of Bleed From Within, The REMNANTSSoulless, Siege of Amida Records, Federation, and Promethee, Remnants instantly seduces the ear with the opening of Winters End, crystalline kisses falling around a melodic temptation from the guitars courted by a bass lure. As the temperature rises and melodic blazes spark off mutual fires of intensity, the song evolves into a ravenous torrent of rapacious riffs, merciless rhythms, and voracious vocals from Medina, her guttural squalls and esurient rabid passion startling and impressively malevolent. The track evolves across a charge of sonic invention and melodic imagination which as potently captivates as the intensity devours making an immense and riveting start to the EP.

     Decrepit Minds taunts the senses next with its initial welcome sonic irritant erupting into a rampant snarl of malicious riffing and mutually violent rhythms, a black metal grace wrapped over a death metal maliciousness is once more ridden by the insidious vocals. The emerging thrash rabidity to the riffs infuses another rush of pleasure and satisfaction whilst once more exposing the diverse intent and creativity of the band.

Through both Seethe and its successor As I Wither, the experience raises its game yet again, the first a slowly prowling menace sizing up its victim with bass and guitar as enthralling as they are menacing before taking an unrelenting chew out of the senses with an avalanche of bass drum animosity and controlled vocal savagery, whilst the second is quite simply a furnace of devious imagination and deviant sonic temptation all honed into a gorging depredation.

If the listener was not already convinced the release seals the recruitment of the passions with the closing pair of Death Toll Rising and finally the title track. The penultimate track is a pit borne snarl with hunger and spite to match, again the vocals of Medina a savage contagion alongside the inventive voice and charm of the guitars that bewitches within the at times bestial rage and furiousness of drums and riffs, not forgetting the wonderfully hostile and seemingly rancor soaked basslines. The title track provides a final thrash sculpted maelstrom of passion and intensive debilitation, blisteringly completing a thoroughly engrossing and impressive debut.

Insentient and the Remnants EP make you work at times to discover its wealth of creative ingenuity, its corrosive surface overwhelming what lies beneath but the effort to explore is rewarded with even greater imagination and pleasure. This is a band we will be hearing a lot more of and with even greater successes one suspects.

https://www.facebook.com/insentientofficial

9/10

RingMaster 19/06/2013

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GraViL – Thoughts Of A Rising Sun

Gravil1

Having already raised a certain appetite for their immense and imaginative sound through previous EPs and the single Enemy Within, UK metallers GraViL have raised the bar for themselves and arguably extreme/melodic metal with the release of their strikingly impressive debut album Thoughts Of A Rising Sun. The self-released brute of enterprise and invention ignites if not a new realm for intense and evocative metal it certainly pushes and sculpts new corners and roads within the existing boundaries.

Having already found awareness through the pages of Kerrang, Terrorizer and Rock Sound, and potent radio play, the London quintet have risen to yet another plateau with Thoughts Of A Rising Sun. Recorded in the closing weeks of last year with acclaimed producer Dan Abela (Gallows, Bleed From Within, Voices, Silent Descent), the album infuses the widest range of metal flavours and essences to their melodic deathcore spine, emerging as unpredictable and as diverse a ravishing of the senses as you could wish for.

The first couple of tracks alone leave no doubt that the album is an immense and startling proposition, as well as suggesting that 3there is still plenty of depths for the band to explore ahead, a frightening and threatening thought to get excited about. Structurally Unsound steps forward on a lone melodic breeze, the bright inviting beckoning a devious lure as it leads the ear into the immediately exploding maelstrom of sound and intensity. The track roars with venom and cavernous strength before gnawing and chewing viciously upon the senses with rabid riffs, crisp rhythms and scowling vocal squalls from Grant Stacey. As the knees buckle under the extreme assault, the band breaks into a breath-taking melodic aside with clean vocal harmonies to lap up with greed. The progressive toned tease is a mere breath in the control regaining fury but then reappears again with the guitars of Tony Dando and Andy Slade parading a skilled and expressive fire of sonic and melodic enslavement for the passions. Throughout the drums of Conor Harkness cage and punish the senses without diminishing the potency of the seduction also at play whilst the bass of Nathan Lamb prowls within its own shadows to add further depth, even if its presence is a little lost in the production and needing concentrated focus to fully feel its compelling breath.

The following Enemy Within, the first single form the album, opens with a rain of electro rock and industrial enticement as its stretches its sinews to their fullest limits, their final positioning the canvas for a technical ear plundering carved from heavy sabre like persistent strokes and a brewing carnivorous intensity. As its exposes more of its inciting landscape there is a merger of sounds which plays like a storm of The Browning, In Flames, and Meshuggah yet stands alone from all three and any other reference you care to throw at it.

The stunning start to the album is easily continued through the offensive savagery of Beyond Reprieve, a track which even with its bestial hunger is not short of irresistible grooves, addictive riffs, and blistering caustic vocals to capture the imagination. Again the sonic intrigue and invention of the guitars is magnetic and the bass finding better clarity in the mix a rapacious intimidation alongside the outstanding stick abuse of Harkness.

The next up treat, The Wanderer unveils an exhausting soundscape of rabid energy and malevolence all matched and tempered by the thrilling vocal harmonies backing up the richly pleasing harsh lead vocals. As upon every song the fusion and thought of the contrasting aspects is inspired and outstandingly realised, their mutual qualities and temptations given full rein to flow and make the most dramatic persuasions whilst working perfectly alongside every other stirring intense facet.

From Something Worth Chasing with its great key led intro, through the violently emotive title track and the barbarous song The Struggle, to the enthralling Bottle Of Shadows with is constantly shifting battle lines, Thoughts Of A Rising Sun charges up the passions and pulse rate with intensive creativity and explosive imagination. Though arguably the first part of the album outshines the latter, the last of the songs just mentioned easily makes a scintillating and demanding claim for best song.

With the epic and excellent riff driving March Of The Titans closing up the album, it is impossible not to drool over GraViL and their future. On the evidence of Thoughts Of A Rising Sun expect a real classic from the band in the future whilst right now they have given up a possible contender for best of 2013.

http://www.gravilmetal.com.

9/10

RingMaster 02/05/2013

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Neaera: Ours Is the Storm

NEAERA_Promo_2012_Woods

    Fired with a tempest of sonic abrasion, the new and sixth album from German metallers Neaera is a furnace of aggression and intensity which has been stoked up into a confrontation which is as punishing as it is compelling. Whether Ours Is the Storm is the band at its most aggressively creative and destructive yet can be discussed in length as they have unleashed numerous onslaughts of impressively violent creativity, but certainly the new album shows they have not lost one ounce of invention, malevolence, and sonic spite.

Since forming in 2003 under the name The Ninth Gate, the band from Münster, Westphalia has triggered constant attention with their distinct maul of death metal with thrash veining, the quintet within a year being signed to Metal Blade Records. Changing their name to Neaera, after a character in Greek mythology, the band released their debut album The Rising Tide Of Oblivion in 2005 to a tide of strong positive reviews. The following years saw four more enthusiastically received albums all garnering strong acclaim in varying degrees and the band igniting stages in shows, tours, and festivals around Europe alongside the likes of Kataklysm, Caliban, Rammstein, Earth Crisis, Sworn Enemy, All That Remains, Soilwork , Bleed From Within, Callejon and many more. With their new album again released via Metal Blade, the band has continued to hone and evolve their sound into a full brutal expanse of imagination, energy, and passion. The release is a carnal devour of the senses which leaves you breathless, sore, and blissfully satisfied.

Opening track The Deafening is a inciting intro to the ferociousness to follow, its brewing corruption and blistered ambience a Neaera - Ours Is the Stormshort breath of oppressiveness before the title track runs with the in place intent to unleash a primal rage upon the ear. With rhythms slapping the senses with muscular persistence and riffs gnawing with rabid hunger whilst sonic spirals of intrigue and enterprise ignite the air further, the song consumes and ravishes person and emotions. It is a stirring bruising encounter which ignites the passions with ease, the varied growls and insidious squalls from Benjamin Hilleke a magnificent cry and scour as impacting and voracious as the sounds colouring the air black and blue around him.

Decolonize the Mind and Through Treacherous Flames both concentrate on the already deep sores ripped open by the first track, the guitars of Stefan Keller and Tobias Buck flattening defences with merciless riffs and branding with sonic flames whilst the skilled drums of Sebastian Heldt make no attempt to hide their hostility and malice. Between the songs and across the album there is arguably a similarity to the corrosive surface which threatens at times to overwhelm the continually challenging imagination and diversity within songs though it is never enough to deflect their intrigue and power, whilst looking each storm directly in the eye and searching its core reveals the depth of invention at work and

Deeper into its heart the album unveils a hunger driven by serpentine maliciousness locked in thrash savagery within Ascend to Chaos and a volatile grooved invidiousness in the outstanding Walk with Fire, a track which tears and violates with contagion and irrepressible craft. The song is one of the major highlights along with the title track though both are challenged seriously by the melodic fire of My Night of Starless and the thundering predator Black Tomb where bassist Benjamin Donath reveals his deepest grudging menace on the album.

Ours Is the Storm continues to deliver impressive storms of scorning anger and sonic antagonism with the likes of Slaying the Wolf Within and Back to the Soul igniting further strong pleasure. It is a release which is hard to say is inventing anything new or startling but at the same time it is a consistently invigorating and inciting fury which is impossible not relish with greed. Neaera shows no sign of losing their potency or vitriol for which we can be very thankful.

http://www.neaera.com

8/10

RingMaster 06/03/2013

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Corroosion: Dirt Awareness

Like the effect of sand in a wind tunnel notched up to the maximum, the new album from Italian deathcore band Corroosion is as abrasive and lethal as their name gives hint to. It is a nasty and destructive piece of work, a sonic blistering without mercy or respect. It is also corruptively magnificent. Dirt Awareness is not the easiest of listens or probably not the most appealing for some at times but stare it right in the eyes and it is becomes one of the more rewarding albums to assault the senses this year and has the makings of an insatiable addiction.

From Turin, Corroosion emerged from the ashes of Hekatomb in 2005. Consisting of vocalist AnD, guitarists Sentenza and Lino, bassist Marco, and Dave on drums, the band made their first mark with their 2008 demo Maze Of Human Deprivation. Relentless gigging followed as well as the six track EP Two Steps Before The Vein, the band all the time creating attention grabbing strokes with their storm of extreme metal leading them to sharing stages with bands such as The Acacia Strain, Deicide, Neaera, Annotations of an Autopsy, Knights of the Abyss, and Slowmotion Apocalypse. Mid 2009 and the band signed with Rising Records and set to work on their debut album Punish The Mind with producer Alan Douches (Killswitch Engage, Emmure, Carnifex, The Acacia Strain, Cannibal Corpse),which was released the following year. 2011 saw the band destroy stages alongside the likes of The Ghost Inside, Bleed From Within, Suffokate, Trigger The Bloodshed, For The Fallen Dreams, before working on their second album. Produced by Fredrik Nordstrom (At The Gates, Job For a Cowboy, Bring Me The Horizon, Dimmu Borgir, In Flames) and released again on Rising on July 23rd, the album is a titanic treat of invention, imagination and outright violence.

The album creeps up on the ear with the opening to Awareness as echoes of war emerge from the sinister whispers to be replaced by the intrusive windings of guitar grooves and flesh grating vocals. At full stretch the track badgers the senses with crisp punchy rhythms and bruising riffs through an attack which seems tempered, as if the band is simply teasing and taunting its victims. The intensity though is oppressive throughout and heightened in the climaxing storm of scowled group vocals, rigid beats, and manipulative guitars, and the song itself the intimidating beginning and appetizer for the annihilation ahead.

The crushing and quite brilliant track The Loser Slave flies for the jugular within seconds of its appearance, air flaying riffs and grinding grooves to open up the deepest sores laying siege upon the senses. The song evolves into a raging stomp of sounds and bestial borne vocals with a ravenous hunger not to be denied. It is pure malevolence brought with the surest ferocity but dive beyond the surface and there is a continual evolution of invention and sound going on which makes every rampage a new offering. It is this which has the band standing out over other similar bands and makes Dirt Awareness far more than a great album.

More impressive brutality comes in the form of the greedily consuming and relentlessly raging Crimes Of Fathers Times with its dehabilitating diversity of riffs and rhythms skewered with a cruelly niggling groove and the stunning Polarity, both further scarring on the ear and scrambling of synapses with sharp twisting manipulations. The second of the two is a maelstrom of hellacious energy and sounds which use their notes like kinder to spark an inferno of fury and creative excellence to bring one to their knees.

The release is simply one continual high quality and imaginative brute with just the intensity and the caustic covering uniformal. The songs twist and turn within their skins, tempo disruptions, unexpected breakdowns, and perfect unpredictability raging in the eye of every storm such as in further triumphs like Collective Humiliation, Falena, and Repulsion, though every track deserves a mention such the depth of excellence.

The suspicion is Corroosion is still an unknown most have yet to discover but with Dirt Awareness the days of that secret is numbered with the band surely on the verge of deserved major attention.

https://www.facebook.com/corroosion

RingMaster 11/07/2012

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Burn The Sunset – Home

With the force of a wind tunnel cranked up to the top, Home from Scottish metalcore band Burn The Sunset is a punishing assault on ear, senses and self security. The debut album from the Stirling based metalers saps the energy and breath from its listener whilst leaving the shattered shell a smiling wreck from its infernal intensity. It is not an easy listen and many will run for cover the instant it places its sonic claws into their psyche but stand tall in the face of its tumultuous aggressive sounds and the reward is deep and satisfying.

Formed in 2008, Burn The Sunset has steadily and effectively worked towards its brutal sound and this debut release. The years leading up to Home has seen the quintet crafting their musical thoughts and sound through countless impressive live shows including shared stages with and tours alongside the likes of Never Cry Wolf, Your Demise, While She Sleeps, Bleed From Within, and It Prevails, and concentrated songwriting, the band garnering strong respect and acclaim along the way. The album is proof that the time taken honing and finding their sound has been well worth the wait. To be honest Home suggests there is still much more to come from the band and that they still have not found that really defining element that will make them stand heads above the rest but they are well on the way and the promise this release offers is frightening and very exciting for future releases and years.

Opening pulsating instrumental ‘Home Pt 1’ proves to be reasonably subdued against the rest of the release, its striking and intrusive riffs a mere hint to the devastation to be unleashed upon the ear. The track leads straight into the excellent ‘Moving On’ and the awakening of the beast that is Home. The track rifles the listener with treacherous riffs and incisive melodic guitars from  Jonathon Almond and Duncan Fyfe that sear rather than groom the ear. It hits hard but still the band is not at full intense capacity, the song bullying rather than crushing its victim. The vocals of Andy Bruce are caustic, his venomous growls dragged from a swamp of bile, and a perfect fit to the blistering sound.

Lonely and Defeated’ throws full force upon the listener, obliterating with destructive riffs, rhythms that numb, and pissy basslines from Jack Sullivan. From here on in the intensity is all consuming and impervious to resistance. ‘The Changing Times’ pummels the senses with towering riffs and power which never diminishes even through the smooth and distinct pace changes. From a rampant animal to a lumbering brute and back the track is relentless and demanding. As throughout the release Home gives no time for a gulp of air between tracks as ‘Insincere’ slams into view belligerent and full of animosity. Its winding groove twists and teases the senses until they are ready to snap whilst scorched guitar play taunts behind. The gang shouts are a good contrast to the harsh delivery of Bruce and maybe if a criticism there were not enough.

The album’s best track is ‘Memories’ and by a long way, it is a classic. It is hard to define what it has different or what sets it apart from the other fine songs but it simply ripples with extra exited energy and enterprising creativity. Without losing any of the urgency and intensity found elsewhere the song ignites and pleases the ear and beyond with a tremendous rhythm attack from Callum Bain, who it has to be said is outstanding throughout Home, essential riffs that trigger the primal inside, and a siren mesmeric groove that attaches itself like a leech giving rather than drawing pleasure.

Home is not without minor faults, mainly in the fact that despite his fine display and aggressive delivery Bruce’s vocals are a touch one dimensional and often veils the variation going on musically. Not a major criticism but a slight diversity would make on feels great songs even better and it is no coincidence that when the collective shouts and chants come in the songs find another dimension.  Despite that Burn The Sunset has announce their arrival with a ferocious and blistering release that will give deep satisfaction for those with an extreme metal/metal core bent.

RingMaster 26/01/2012

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