High Down – Moving On

Suggesting they might be the ones to give the British pop punk scene an invigorating new breath, Portsmouth hailing High Down have just released their first EP. Moving On offers five slices of ear pleasing infection carrying punk rock, each bearing a sound with a spikiness which alone commands attention and further investigation.

Emerging last year, High Down made a potent mark with debut single Family & Fiends, the track recorded with producer Matt O’Grady (You Me At Six/Deaf Havana). Its impact was followed by the band playing slots at the likes of Seasick Fest, Butserfest, and Teddy Rocks Festival as well as share stages with bands such as WSTR, Roam, and Like Pacific. It is fair to say that things are beginning to stir for the quartet, a motion sure to gain momentum through Moving On.

The EP opens up with new single Life Lessons, guitars instantly luring ears with their catchy invitation. It is an infectiousness which is as instinctive in the vocal prowess of Luke Smithson and the rhythmic stroll of bassist Tim Hoolahan and drummer James Grinter who it appears has since left the band. The energy of the song is bold but with an enterprising restraint, it constantly pulling on the reins throughout but blossoming from that same reflective control. Feet and ears are soon lost to its temptation, appetite to its mix of harmonic warmth and again reserved but open irritability.

Making History backs up the fine start with its own line in melodic suggestion and rhythmic persuasion, it too keeping a hold on its boisterousness but giving enough of a rein to stir the spirit especially within another rousing chorus. The guitars of Darrell Ellis and Joe Soar weave a captivating web of sonic adventure with the former’s vocals potently backing the lead tones and expression of Luke Smithson. There are no big surprises yet each moment of accomplished endeavour increases the song’s draw, a quality just as inescapable in next up All On You. High Down has been given comparisons to artists such as Blink 182 and New Found Glory, the third track with its high kicking beats and nagging riffs a contagious example of why. There is a greater fire in its belly than in its predecessors and similarly an even more imposing catchiness that commands attention and response as smart hooks and harmonic dexterity relentlessly tempt.

The acoustic seduction of Rescue Me follows with vocals and guitar crooning knowingly with thought and emotion. The song features the guest tones of Nottinghamshire singer Christina Rotondo, her vocal beauty a striking essence in the union with the similarly impressing presence of Smithson. With a rawer edge to its gritty finale, the track grows in intensity and emotion to truly hit the spot before making way for the pinnacle of the release. The best track on offer for these ears, Against The Tide instantly winds wiry tendrils of guitar around ears, their steely touch alone a keen lure but only tightening their invitation with their niggling prowess, one matched in dexterity and persuasive trespass by the muscular swings of Grinter and the growling bass of Hoolahan. It is a dynamic and imposing yet again seriously infectious proposal to bring the highly enjoyable encounter to a fierce close.

In many ways there is nothing overly remarkable about Moving On yet every moment it shares is rich in enterprise and energy whilst being backed by a potential which suggests High Down can have a big presence on the UK if not European pop punk theatre.

Moving On is out now and available @ http://highdownuk.bigcartel.com/

https://www.facebook.com/highdownuk    https://twitter.com/highdownuk

Pete RingMaster 05/09/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Bottom Line – I Still Hate You

With the British outfit just finishing off a successful tour of China and still reaping high praise for their I Still Hate You EP released this past January pop punkers The Bottom Line spark off another seriously busy period by uncaging its title track as their new single.

The London quartet is poised to hit Canada and the US on tour alongside Simple Plan before undertaking a set of already sold out UK dates with US outfit Waterparks, all over the next month and a half. It is a period echoing an eight week period last year which, again with the Canadian band on their World Tour, saw The Bottom Line travel across 14 countries. I Still Hate You is the perfect spark to set things off, an attention grabbing slice of what is making the band one of the most potent propositions on the independent scene.

Unerringly catchy but with an irritability which swiftly gets its claws into the imagination, the single instantly has the hips swinging and body bouncing in tandem with its own aural animation. Spiky riffs infest the imagination as they spring from the initial melodic glaze cast by lead guitarist Tom Newton, their almost grouchy presence backed by the biting beats of Matt Bicker. The throaty grumble of Max Ellis’ bass adds to the pleasure and a predacious edge tempered nicely by the infectious vocal presence of guitarist Callum Amies, his inviting tones backed by the equally warm tones of Ellis.

As the track continues to boisterously stroll, offering plenty of enticing twists and turns along the way, a Hagfish like hue roars as a Blink 182 scent teases; flavouring when added to the band’s own creative tenacity has the body leaping and an appetite for move slavering.

As the last, this year has been and continues to be a busy one for The Bottom Line, I Still Hate You showing why it is also being a highly successful one.

I Still Hate You is out now; check out its video on the Video Selector page @

The Bottom Line Tour dates:

August 20th – The Anvil, Bournemouth

August 23rd – Prague – with The Offspring

 

On tour with Simple Plan from August 25th to Sept 3rd in America and from 5th September to 19th September in Canada (See dates on The Bottom Line website).

 

UK Tour with Waterparks (sold out!)

Sept 21st – Bristol Fleece

Sept 22nd – Nottingham, Rescue Rooms

Sept 23rd – Newcastle – O2 Academy 2

Sept 24th – Glasgow – King Tut’s

Sept 26th – Leeds – Key Club

Sept 27th – Manchester – Academy 3

Sept 28th – London – Underworld

Sept 29th – Birmingham – Academy 2

Sept 30th – Brighton – The Haunt

http://thebottomlineuk.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thebottomlineUK/    https://twitter.com/thebottomlineuk

Pete RingMaster 17/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Maypine – In The Back Of My Mind

Providing a rather strong introduction to themselves, British pop-punks Maypine release their debut EP this month. In The Back Of My Mind offers five tracks of infectious melodic punk bursting with potential and an already revealing potent craft in songwriting and enterprise. It is not jaw dropping or particularly unique but certainly commands eager attention with ease, success in anyone’s book.

Formed around the middle of last year and rising from the ever vibrant Brighton music scene, Maypine soon showed their strengths and lures on the local live scene, continuing to draw support and acclaim thereon in leading up to the imminent release of their first EP. Recorded with producer Ian Sadler (ROAM/Homebound), it opens up with recent single A Little Sooner which soon has ears cupped in a weave of melodic guitars speared by striking rhythms. From their midst, a strolling gait loaded with instinctive catchiness breaks, vocalist Jason Payne backed by the equally alluring tones of rhythm guitarist Dan Jarvis, magnetic at the fore. It is hard not to be swept up in the song’s infectious nature and exploits, lead guitarist Becky East weaving a captivating web of melodic and enterprise to seal the deal.

The great start is keenly backed by new video/single North South Divide which too needs little time to have ears lured and bodies bouncing. The swinging beats of drummer James Holdsworth make a great driving impetus to its exploits, the heavier tone of Tommy Roberts’ bass bringing a fine tempering to the fiery flames of guitar which again firmly hold ears and appetite as vocals share the song’s emotive heart. Calmer moments only add to its strength, revealing bolder aspects in the band’s imagination before Inside Out jumps in with its just as keen energy and tenacity. Though it lacks some of the more unpredictable twists of its predecessors, the track is a contagious proposal leaving enjoyment full and giving plenty of clues to the band’s success as a live proposition.

Never Far Apart calms things down with its acoustic croon, guitar and voice sharing real magnetism before things eventually boil up with the rest of the band adding their flames to the increasingly volatile smoulder. A slow burner in some ways compared to other tracks, it rises to be a compelling part of the impressing release.

Closing track Day After Day brings things to a strong conclusion though it too misses out on making the more striking impression of other tracks on the EP. Nevertheless tapping feet and pleasured ears endorses its catchy potency and its part in ensuring In The Back Of My Mind leaves a strong appetite for more of the Maypine sound.

With numerous essences which should appeal to those with a liking for bands such as ROAM, Blink-182, and You Me At Six, the EP suggests Maypine is a rather promising new addition to British pop punk.

In The Back Of My Mind is released August 4th through Disconnect Records.

MAYPINE August tour:

Friday 04 – Hope & Ruin, Brighton

Saturday 05 – Mulberry Tavern, Sheffield

 Sunday 06 – Creepy Wee Pub, Dunfermline (Acoustic/afternoon set)

Sunday 06 – The Attic/The Garage, Glasgow***

Tuesday 08 – Retro Bar, Manchester***

Thursday 10 – The Shed, Leicester**

Friday 11 – The Thunderbolt, Bristol**

Saturday 12 – The Attic, Torquay**

Sunday 13 – The Joiners, Southampton**

Monday 14 – The Black Heart, Camden**

Tuesday 15 – The Attic, Ashford**

Wednesday 16th – TJ’s, Eastbourne

**w/ Better Than Never | *** w/ Coast To Coast

http://facebook.com/maypineuk   http://twitter.com/maypineuk   http://instagram.com/maypineuk

Pete RingMaster 02/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Grabbing the throat of attention with Chasing Sounds

chasing-sounds_RingMasterReview

Uncaging their own individual punk fuelled snarl from the heart of Austria, Chasing Sounds is a band with a sound as young and fresh as its existence and already beginning to stir up real attention. We recently seized upon the chance to find out more in interview with the rising band, taking a look at their origins, debut album, and what drives them forward…

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to the band’s beginnings?

We are Chasing Sounds a melodic HC/Punk band based in Vienna, Austria.

I’m Attila one of the founding members, I play bass and try to “sing” harsh backing vocals in the band. I’m the songwriter, and since I compose mainly on guitar, I record all the guitars and bass in the studio as well. The band was ”officially” formed by Mate (drums) and me on Aug. 8th 2013 which means; it was the day when we put together our very first song ‘Knock Out which later became our first single along with a music video to it as well. Mate and I knew each other since elementary school, and we’ve been in our first garage band together back in 2005. We managed to break up before we even had a singer or a gig. We remained friends though, hung out and knew it way before that we were gonna end up in a real band together. The only question was when. It took us ”only” 8 years to get our shit together. So everything was planned, it wasn’t just a lucky coincidence. In early 2015 Florian (singer) and Mate K. (guitar) finalized our line-up, so I moved backed to my beloved bass. This was the original plan, and it seemed to work for a while

So you were in other bands before; how has those experiences impacted on what you are doing now?

Myself (Attila) have played in a lot of other bands before, the latest was a now defunct progressive punk band (or however should I label the genre) called Good Reason. In that band I had the challenge to keep up with 3 very talented amazing musicians. I learned a lot from those guys.

I was in another HC/Metal band before and a shitty metalcore band too. Mate (drums) was in 2 progressive metal bands Dysentery and Disconcrete. They’re both defunct now, but released great music, you can find them somewhere on the internet I guess…

What inspired the band name?

That’s an awesome story, we had the band name way before we had any material written or we even went to jam under the name Chasing Sounds. It was one of those average high school night outs, me (Attila) Mate and another friend of ours were hanging out drinking and smoking at Mate’s Grandma’s basement; our usual spot to hang out after going thru all the bars in Bratislava. We were pretty drunk and under the influence of other substances, listening to some weird electro music, playing around with words Mate spat out Chasing Sounds. We knew it at that very moment that this will be our band name if we ever manage to put a band together. I remember this like it was yesterday. This was around 2010.

cs3_RingMasterReviewWas there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

I wanted to combine all the styles of music which I love. Most of the songs are heavily guitar driven, I like fast punk rock parts, great grooves and sing-a-longs. I knew it from the start how I wanted my band to sound like, and I think we’re on the right path and even the people seem to get it. Sometimes we get these crowd responses that “dude you guys totally sound like Ignite, Rise Against or Strike Anywhere” which is really sweet to hear and is a huge compliment. Even tho’ I don’t really hear it this way, but for sure those bands influenced us as well.

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

I always set goals for us. When it was only the 2 of us it was about writing songs, getting a singer and a guitar player so I could switch to bass, and have a line-up and start playing gigs. Then it was time to record an album, make videos, tour, and the same thing over and over again. Now of course we want to play bigger and better shows, play more in general, do another record. We are searching for a Booking Agency or Promoter who would help us with the booking of our gigs and bigger tours. So if you’re reading this, give us a hint or spread the word. Thx!

How would you say your sound has evolved since it began?

Since the band itself is really not that old, the sound is pretty much the same. We use the same equipment we did 2 years ago, and everything sounds pretty much the same, when we play live. I’m gonna experiment with new sounds and different songs on our next record, so if you guys will still follow us, you can expect something different, but again, it’s not gonna be a radical departure, I mean we’re not gonna start playing bluegrass or something like that…

Any progression within the band and your music is more of an organic movement or more the band deliberately wanting to try new things?

It was all organic, once we compose a new song and we like it, we will keep it even if it’s not exactly what the rest of the songs sound like. I think this is one of the best parts about creating music, you’re basically unlimited in what you’re doing; you can play the same melody, chord progression or whatever in a million ways, you just have to pick one you like the most.

Most of the songs we write are not planned. When I say to myself that now I’m gonna sit down and write a great song, it’s not gonna work that way.

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 to creating and playing music?

Since I’m the songwriter most of the times, things that happen to me personally, things I see happening in my near and own experiences and after hearing a great song from somebody if it kicks me in.

Is there a particular process to your songwriting?cs-art_RingMasterReview

I’ll just sit down with my guitar and noodle around. If something catches my attention I’ll try to build a structure around the main riff, and turn it into a song. Then I record it on my phone, and will bring it to band practice. If it’s not total bullshit and Mate’s feeling it too, we jam on it add or take away parts and will go back to it. If we like it we keep it in mind and will work on it the next week. This is the usual writing process we follow. Sometimes we just come in, take our instruments and start from zero. If the musical chemistry hits at that point, something magical can come out. This is the unusual side of how we write music, and how our best songs were made. See Yesterday’s no Different.

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

Since it’s really not affordable to go into any studio, get stoned or drunk, and just jam on a riff and call it a song we don’t do that. I think nowadays 90% of the bands won’t to that, because it’s just a waste of a lot of money. The times when record labels gave 1 million dollar recording budgets to bands are over. It just makes no sense to do it in my opinion unless you have your own studio.

Give us some background to your latest release.

Our debut album Elektrobioscope came out on December 3rd 2015 so as your reading this, it’s gonna be one year old in around two weeks. I think there is a little bit of everything on this album; people who listen to Hardcore, Metal, Punk or any other sub-genre of this music will find, at least one song which they will like. Just take the opening song Here we Are, it’s an instant throwback to the 90’s skate punk scene, fans of fast paced bands like Pennywise, No Use For a Name  and similar will probably like it. Another song Spirit of AC is again very pop/punk driven like late 90’s Blink 182 it’s got that Dude Ranch feel to it. An album which created a musical milestone in my life, and if anyone wonders what does ”AC” stands for its Atlantic City, the place where we hung out and got the inspiration for this song. Moving on to other songs on the album; Corrupted Bullshit, Knock Out, and False Flag Attack are straight up old school hardcore songs, with a great portion of NYHC vibe. Fans of Madball, H2O, Biohazard, Agnostic Front should check them out. Especially when we perform them live, that’s where all the energy comes out, and if the crowd is feeling it those are the best moments of our shows. Then we got the title track Elektrobioscope and Yesterday’s no Different which are the more serious songs, and definitely the best ones on the whole record. Judge it yourself and give it a go, the album is on our Bandcamp page you can download it for FREE!

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

The topics of the songs are mixed. Everyday life feelings, anger, various events happening in the world, motivation, abstract, love, break-up…

Flo writes the lyrics based on what he wants to write about or after listening to the instrumentals. Or, when Attila writes a riff or the basics of a song he gives them a working title or brings an idea for a song name – Flo can relate to this and might write lyrics to that title.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the band’s favourite times?

As mentioned above, you will like us playing live because there is so much energy going on stage that you either enter that bubble and forget everything outside of it or you stand still, which means something is wrong with you. This isn’t positive or negative energy. It can be both, but most importantly, it’s fun!

cs2_RingMasterReviewIt 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? Are there still the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for bands?

There are hundreds of bands coming and going in a matter of couple of years. A band might start with something huge which gives them attention at start but nobody cares if they break up in a year or two. It’s more about staying stable, keeping your fans up-to date, being productive and never get bored pushing what you like to do the most.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date?

The internet is a powerful tool which connects people. Social media has levels which allow smaller bands to stay connected easily with their fans on a daily basis. Of course it can be used at a much bigger scale.

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

We sell two type of T-shirts as merch and some more designs are about to come. They look great so get you some and support us haha. We ship for free!

https://www.facebook.com/chasingsoundsband   https://chasingsounds.bandcamp.com/releases

Pete RingMaster 28/12/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hello Bear – I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?

hello-bear-promo-shot_RingMasterReview

A trap waiting to grab your imagination and energy, I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? more than lives up to its title with its bouncy persona and rousing spirit. The new EP from British quartet Hello Bear, the four-track stomp is a sparkling burst of power/punk pop which may not carry major surprises but is as fresh and vibrant as anything escaping the year so far.

Formed in 2010, the Norwich bred band take inspiration found in the likes of Weezer, Pavement, Los Campesinos!, Refused, The Bronx, Presidents of the USA, McFly, Johnny Foreigner, and Dananananaykroyd into their own highly flavoursome exploits. Invigorating as a live presence which has seen Hello Bear play with bands such as Los Campesinos, Coasts, Darwin Deez, The Futureheads, and The King Blues, their sound is an ear grabber which now refuses to be ignored within the band’s new offering. The press release accompanying the EP suggests it carries “their most exciting material to date.” Being our introduction to Hello Bear it is hard to confirm or argue, but exciting the Lee Batiuk (Deaf Havana, Trash Boat, Hopeless Records) produced release is and relentlessly enjoyable.

I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? opens up with new single We Held Hands Once, But Then She Got Embarrassed, the collective energy and enterprise of Luke Bear (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Mary Bear (guitar), Tom Bear (bass), and Daryl Bear (drums) hitting the floor running. A lone strum entices first being quickly joined by the potent tones of Luke before the song jumps on ears with eager riffs and canny rhythms. In no time it is into an infectious stroll with hooks and melodies uniting to charm attention before brewing and finally expelling a virulent contagion through its irresistible chorus. There is no escaping joining those offering Blink 182 meets Weezer as a reference for the tenaciously lively sound of song and band; add a touch of Super Happy Fun Club and The All-American Rejects though and the mix is even closer to the rousing incitement.

hello-bear-cover-artwork_RingMasterReviewThe following Mmm Cheque Please! makes a just as striking entrance, another single strain of guitar bait making the first lure, rampant beats and Luke’s inviting vocals the next  before it all blooms into another infectious canter. Daryl’s beats resonate as they land and Tom’s basslines grumble as much as they seduce while Mary and Luke share a tapestry of hooks and melodic endeavour which only leads to a greater appetite for song and release. Admittedly the track lacks the final spark which ignites its predecessor but leaves pleasure bubbling eagerly as does Dirty Weekend with its more restrained but wholly magnetic presence. Repeating a prowess which confirms Hello Bear masterful at creating big choruses and ripe hooks which simply infest the psyche, the song lays lustfully upon the senses.

The EP ends as its starts with a track which just whips up the passions. Attack Hug Influences is addiction for the ears, a slice of rock pop which seizes hold of body and spirit in a breathless romp complete with spicy hooks, tenacious rhythms, and a vocal coaxing which virtually forces listener involvement.

It is a boisterous end to a release which demands a party is woven around its presence each and every time. No moments of major uniqueness, all irresistible fun fuelled ingenuity; that is I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?, one of the most enjoyable adventures this year.

I Don’t Know… It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It? is released November 11th

http://www.hellobear.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/hellobear/    https://twitter.com/hellobearband

Pete RingMaster 08/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Eight Days – More To Life

eight-days-band-promo-shot_RingMasterReview

Seemingly tagged as melodic hardcore more often than not but showing a hefty side in hook laden punk rock in their new proposition, British trio Eight Days is one of those bands knocking on the door of broader attention. Since emerging on the first breath of 2014, the London based outfit has earned a reputation of being one of the more potent forces within the underground scene. Evidence of that strength linked with a generous invention for ears and imagination to embrace can be found in the More To Life EP, a release suggesting that Eight Days might soon be going above ground to tap into national attention.

With inspirations said to come from the likes of Norma Jean, Black Peaks, Blink 182, and Yellowcard, Eight days released their debut at the end of their first year. The well-received No Idols EP was followed by the band rampaging across the UK on numerous tours before sophomore EP, Surrounded By The Ones Who Want Me To Fail, was unveiled to greater acclaim, proving that the months had also seen the band’s songwriting and sound blossoming.

More to Life is another step forward in all aspects by Eight days, a quartet of songs as raw and emotionally intrusive as they are fiercely infectious with dramatic hooks and surprising twists to the fore. There are still areas where uniqueness is a less obvious proposal but continuing as they are, that is something easy to suspect being remedied in the future.

eight-days-cover-artwork_RingMasterReviewThe EP opens up with Was It All Worth It and straight away the track has attention hooked as a melody, with a mix of warmth and shadow in its character, wraps enticingly around ears. A rising storm of rhythms led by the feisty beats of  Lewis Fife with the brooding rumble of James Carty’s bass alongside soon join the invitation, it all taking the listener into the turbulent yet catchy heart of the song where the guitar of Ben Brazier casts suggestive melodies and inventive hooks around his emotion flushed vocal squalls. It is a potent mix captivating from start to finish, melodic and post hardcore textures engaging each other in an arguably less than original but certainly potent way for a strong start to the release.

The band’s imagination kicks up a gear from hereon in starting with Unclear as the threesome bring some stronger punk rock elements into their bruising dramatic roar. Carrying a touch of Cancer Bats to its bellow, the second song bounds through ears with venom and animosity though again the instinctive catchiness of their song’s gaits and swinging rhythms make it all very enticing. Spicy hooks and unexpected twist and turns in the imagination of the song makes it stand out in no time, group shouts and the predatory growl of the bass adding to a creative drama not as obvious in its predecessor.

It is a fresh invention and boldness even more persuasive in the following Counterweight. From its first breath, the song is throwing tangy grooves and virulent hooks at the listener while Brazier’s throat is raw through ire fuelled confrontation. The track is irritable rock ‘n’ roll, an irrepressible trespass on the senses and the biggest highlight of the already impressing release.

A growling grouchy bassline opens up final track Walls; hard and melodic rock spiced flavours mixing with the band’s instinctive aggressive enterprise. At times a twist away from taking best song honours from its predecessor, the song is a fine end to a very satisfying release.

More To Life is proof that Eight Days are something fresh in a crowded melodic hardcore scene and once they find that real uniqueness there may be no stopping them.

The More To Life EP is out in stores on Friday 14th October and @ https://eightdaysuk.bandcamp.com/album/more-to-life and http://eightdaysuk.bigcartel.com/

https://www.facebook.com/EightDaysUK  https://twitter.com/eightdaysuk

Pete RingMaster 13/10/2016
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Infectious roars: talking Rosedale with founder Mike Liorti.

Rosedale_RingMasterReview

The brainchild of Torontonian Mike Liorti, Rosedale is an aggressive pop band which commands attention. Formed in 1989, the band has moved and evolved through numerous personnel and situations, all the time Mike honing the sound and imagination which has lured potent praise to EPs and albums. With thanks to Mike we recently explored deeper into the world and body of Rosedale…

Hello Mike and thanks for talking with us.

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

Thanks for having me. Rosedale is currently just me. I have different members all over the place but I’ve been solo for almost 5 years.

Have you been involved in other bands before? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

I’ve produced, managed, and played keys/lead guitar for my friend Alex Baker. We recorded his album January Blues in 14 hours and toured it for a couple months. He’s an incredible artist and has definitely influenced me to keep it simple. I also filled in on guitar/guest vocals for a couple bands that played as my band such as Time and Distance (Charleston, WV) and Your Favorite Coastline (Virginia Beach). Both were very fun experiences. I programmed some FX and lights into their back tracks for fun. And they both taught me a lot about writing even before I played for them and I was just a fan. I also sang vocals on a Disney musical called Radio Rebel. I sing all the vocals for the GGGG’s character, Atticus Mitchell.

What inspired the band name?

The band name came from a street that was on our way to the local music store, L&M. We would walk to that music store almost every day and write songs on their awesome gear. We ended up becoming friends with all the employees and recorded with some of them. So that store and the walks to it represent our roots and where we came from. Still, to this day, I’ve met some of my musicians while checking out music stores, taught parts and sold gear to people in music stores, and we often get people saying “I feel like I walked into the lighting room at Guitar Center” as we’re about to start our set. So it’s safe to say I’ve always been the store rat. And it’s taught me more than a college degree would have.

rosedale2Was there a specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Initially we were very influenced by our local heroes, Moneen. The Used and Boxcar Racer/Blink 182 were also up there on our direction list, but every time we hit the clean channel, it was for Moneen. We were about growing pains and dreams to leave our home town (very original…) As everyone sort of fizzled out into real life and new bands, I migrated the message of Rosedale to more of a motivational message to stay focused on your dreams, show the world what you’re made of, be grateful for what you have, and never give up.

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

They’ve definitely evolved over time, especially with new members coming in for tours. I try to take titbits of their influences into the parts/intros/endings so they have a little more fun every night and it keeps things fresh for me. And I definitely still enjoy playing old songs and putting a twist on them. Right now we’re doing an 8 minute “anniversary version” of our 2006 single you’ll count to Ten (for whatever ten people care) which I just now realized has some serious irony in the title.

Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved? Has it seen more of an organic movement of sound or more deliberate intent to try new things?

Rosedale’s sound has definitely matured into more of a listenable aggressive pop. We no longer put our amps on 11 and sing/yell from our throats the whole set. But there’s definitely a lot more raw passion and expression on stage and in the recordings so it’s overall much more authentic. There’s also a lot more orchestration and traditional symphony/big band instruments in the tracks now- big choir vocals too. That evolution just sort of came naturally through my classical upbringing and appreciation for classic movie score composers like John Williams and Hans Zimmer. I just figured ‘hey nobody has really mixed that with punk rock’ and it’s made some cool songs. It takes a lot of time to score them out and program them to sound realistic but it’s a really rewarding process to hear them back.

Are there any in particular inspirations which have added colour to not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

There are definitely influences all over the place in my music and approach on life (Some more surprising than others). You might not think Lil’ Wayne has a strong influence on the decisions I make, but he does. I don’t smoke or drink syrup, but I often think “what would Weezy do?” whenever I feel like closing up shop early after a long day in the studio. I watched a documentary on how Michael Jordan switched from basketball to baseball and I was just as inspired to work on my show from it as I was from seeing an Angels & Airwaves concert. So influences are drawn from everywhere for me. If it sounds good to me, I’ll roll with it, if it has meaning to my life, I’ll write about it.

Is there a general process to your songwriting?

My process is No Process. I like to change it up every time I write a song and challenge myself. If I started writing on piano last song, the next one I might write on guitar, or uke, or acoustic, or just a pad. If I was using pro-tools to demo it out, I’ll try Logic or ableton or Reason for the next demo. If I just finished a sad song, next one is gunna be happy; slow song, fast song etc. The last thing I would ever want Rosedale to be is a recipe that has every song on the album sounding the same…as much as that works for bands these days.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

I just write. Personal life memories, something that is on my mind a lot, whatever the chords/song reminds me of. I try not to decide what I’m gunna write about before writing a song. I usually just dive into it, even if there’s no music yet, and realize what I’m writing about once there are a few lines down.

Give us some background to your latest release.

Rosedale was released February 2016 and is a self-titled release because it’s basically all about Rosedale; where it all started, my personal story, why I am who I am, and the struggles I currently face. I recorded it at the studio that mentored me into the recording world, Drive Studios in Woodbridge Ontario. I’ve been good friends with Steve Rizun for the past few years and knew that studio inside-out so it made perfect sense to do the album there. It’s every control freak’s dream to have the key to the studio and I was like a kid in a candy store. 14 hour days flew by in that place.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind its songs.rosedale_RingMasterReview

The on-going theme, naturally, is to do what you love and never give up. Sacrifice everything else for the one thing you truly wanna do with your life.

Do you go into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

A little bit of both. I do like going into a studio with all the ideas mapped out and just replacing the tracks with better tones/takes. But sometimes I’ll just have a couple tracks and a tempo laid out and say “I’m saving this one for the studio…I wanna get crazy with this one”.

Tell us about the live side to the band.

We have a programmed light show and a bunch of automation on our mics to make it sound like (and sometimes bigger than) the record. We also bring our own fog machine. It helps make every show epic and works well with our music. Whenever I think “man, I set all this stuff up for nothing” I’ll see someone taking a picture or video and lose all regret.

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? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there?

Toronto is very tough to have as your home base. I rarely play it because it’s always such a let-down seeing everyone bail last minute. [With] most Canada shows that seems to be the case for some reason; like you have to create a big buzz elsewhere before your hometown cares about you again. I wish all it took was good music. The best place for music is Germany/Austria. Anywhere where German is the main language, good music prospers. I hear the same thing about Japan too but I’ve never been there myself.

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 or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

The internet and social media should be much more useful than it actually is. Contemporary social media has ruined music, straight up. It’s the independent musician’s worst enemy. It was great in the MySpace days but now, thanks to the corporate sharks taking over, it’s just one big useless distraction polluting everyone’s common sense. Will it ever be useful/free again? One can only hope. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of positive things that social media is to thank for, like connecting with new fans personally has never been easier! But overall it’s just become one big cess pool of gimmicks, memes, vented personal matters, and ads.

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

Keep your stick on the ice.

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Pete RingMaster

The Ringmaster Review 01/07/2016

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