Murkocet – Strip Club Massacre


Roaring out of Chandler, Arizona, Murkocet is a band which has the potential of creating a forceful stir within the metal scene if tracks unveiled last year and now new single Strip Club Massacre are any indication. The song is an irritable and rousingly brutal proposal sculpted with the juiciest grooves and grouchiest riffs with antagonistically matching rhythms. It is an attention grabber which alone offers plenty to understand why great things are envisaged for the band by many.

The origins of the single belies its imposing stature and impressive voracity, with vocalist Richie Jano revealing that “…the song was originally written as a joke, but then it ended up becoming a really powerful song with some strong hooks. Anyone who has ever been to a strip club and felt like they ‘almost had her’ is going to be able to relate to this song, that coupled with its intensity makes for a really fun experience.” Powerful it certainly is and having been already unveiled on the likes of Spotify, it has grabbed the interest of a great many including the makers of an upcoming horror film of the same name who have grabbed the track as its theme song. The director of Strip Club Massacre, Bruce Kilroy further commented about the single, saying “We Murkocet_CD_inlay_RingMasterReviewcouldn’t have imagined a more perfect match for our movie than Murkocet’s Strip Club Massacre. Not only do we share the same name, but the way the in-your-face vocals and guitars unleash hell is the exact way we’re building the climax for our film. As the track reaches its filthiest best, you can almost feel the blood rain down on you, and that’s exactly what we wanted.

That dirty uncompromising and irresistible experience is unleashed from the track’s first breath. Guitarist Nate Garrett immediately uncages a vicious swirl of riffs and grooves, the maelstrom then punctured by Mike Mays’ invasive swings and the equally predacious enticement uncaged by Brandon Raeburn’s bass strings. As Jano’s vocals bring their irritable ire and snarling expression to the mix, grooves breakout a sultry seducing in their lure, but Garrett never settles on one form of assault and persuasion, his craft and imagination an evolving protagonist easy to become seriously greedy over.

Whether stalking the senses or brawling with them, the track is riveting and explosive stuff, like a mix of Lamb of God and Bloodsimple and reason alone to keep Murkocet eagerly on the radar.

Strip Club Massacre is out March 18th @

Pete RingMaster 17/03/2016

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Huron – The Dead Stay Dead

Photo by Leigh Drinkwater Photography

Photo by Leigh Drinkwater Photography

It will not be the first time that UK metallers Huron will have majorly stirred up acclaim and attention with a release but their stunning new album, The Dead Stay Dead is surely going to ensure that the band is regarded as one of the big boys from hereon in. As mentioned, previous encounters have all drawn strong support and praise from media and fans alike but their new and easily finest proposal to date is a band reshaping and igniting not only their own creative landscape but the metal scene around them.

Formed towards the end of 2007, Plymouth hailing Huron has worked through many line-ups changes which seem to have only help spark new potency and power in their fusion of progressive, thrash, and melodic metal and the increasingly impressive releases it fuelled. Debut album Cheyne Stoking lured strong praise and focus with its release in 2009, the band’s live reputation only being enhanced as they toured the UK in support. Its successor Mary Celeste whipped up an even feistier storm of acclaim across fans and media in 2011, its success matched a year later by the War Party EP. Performances at the likes of Download, Bulldog Bash, and Bloodstock followed whilst a British tour with Skindred was just one more live triumph to add to shows with bands such as One Machine, Onslaught, Evile, Alestorm, Ill Niño, and Viking Skull over the years. As the outstanding The Dead Stay Dead lights an expected touch paper to the strongest spotlights upon the band yet, this year looks set to emulate and surpass the successful twelve months the band had in 2015 and show Huron to be the new big roar in modern metal.

Mixed and mastered by Justin Hill (SikTh) and produced by guitarist Rimmy Sinclair, The Dead Stay Dead opens with The Ark Of Deucalion. A provocative sonic mist first wraps ears before intensive riffery from Sinclair and Chris Smith descends venomously on the senses driven by the barbarous beats of drummer David Parsons and the predatory throaty lures of Rohan James’ bass. It is a swiftly compelling and anthemic incitement built on the contagion of thrash but quickly showing the hefty weave of textures and styles now in the Huron sound as it evolves under the antagonistic roar of vocalist Sean Palmer, who has since left the band with James taking over the vocal spot. Darkly celestial harmonies only add to the drama within the blazing cauldron of craft and intensity, at times the track almost like a merger of Slayer, Devin Townsend, and now demised UK band Mishkin.

Huron Cover artwork_RingMaster ReviewThe striking start is soon eclipsed by the album’s title track, The Dead Stay Dead a predator quickly stalking ears and imagination with its scything rhythms and sizzling tendrils of sonic spice. Vocals assault and ripen the appetite as the song matches their bait with aggressive kind but it is when the track slips into something more melodically comfortable with clean vocals to match, that a great song opens its full temptation. It is irresistible, an ugly duckling evolving into blooming beauty and back with Jekyll And Hyde frequency for the thickest contagion.

Santa Muerte slips in next with a sinister climate and grievous intent in its rhythms and riffs. As in its predecessors, tortuously swinging grooves bind ears and an already greedy appetite whilst the raw vocal tones collude with the open animosity in the thrash bred and increasingly dynamic ferocity devouring the senses. Exhaustion and joy is the by-product of the blistering encounter, ears basking in the melodic enterprise searing their flesh and the rapacious imagination seducing their depths before both Pyschosis and Murder Hole unleash their venomous rancor and creative rabidity. The first of the two is a thunderous onslaught with a death thrash tendency to its equally tenacious weave of infection loaded flavours and ideation. Infused further by the burning prowess of guitars and solo it makes for one glorious collision between song and lust emulated again in its successor, a song which wraps itself in more recognisable thrash spices a la Metallica and proceeds to twist and re-weave those flavours into something far more primal and inventive with another dose of excellent clean vocal adding to the great diversity.

Managing to be brutish and seductive, the mouth-watering Despina feverishly rampages on ears like a cultured barbarian next whilst Bastard King emerges from atmospheric shadows to infest body and psyche with its sonic trespasses and rhythmic predation like a vampiric temptress taking the imagination on a ride through the darkest fearsome scenery. Both again are individual in their nature and bodies but united in igniting the passion with their invasive and imposingly addictive adventures through they are slightly outshone by the merciless virulence of The Spirit Of Hate & Vengeance. Like Black Dahlia Murder meets System Of A Down with Bloodsimple in close attention, to try and give a hint to its insatiable tempest, the track is manna to the metal feeding passions and for personal tastes the king amongst only great warriors on the album.

With the militant natured Bokanovsky’s Process and the flaming progressive subtlety of Solace, band and album continue to beat and thrill; the cunning twists and resourceful stalking of the senses by the first contrasted by the melodically poetic and cantankerously intrusive might of the second. Again each song has its own creative agenda and voice to keep the rich variety to the album flowing before Fresh & Thorns brings The Dead Stay Dead to a fearsomely rugged and invigoratingly rousing close. There is a hint of Mudvayne to the violent wantonness and canny maze of biting textures of the track, yet as everywhere any hints offered to songs in reference to others are slim hues in something uniquely Huron.

It has been a fair while between albums but the time has seen Huron escalate their craft, imagination, and fiercely flavoured confrontation of sound. The Dead Stay Dead is the proof from a band ready and undoubtedly equipped to take on the world.

The self-released The Dead Stay Dead is available from February 12th through all platforms and outlets.

Pete RingMaster 11/02/2016

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Order Of 315 – Antipi


Photo_RingMaster Review

Three years ago French metallers Order of 315 awoke ears and attention with their debut album Near-Birth Experience, a fierce and tenacious offering which only grew in persuasion and stature over time. Now the Paris quartet have returned with its successor Antipi, raising the heat of the qualities and potential found in the first album whilst creating an even more compelling and varied confrontation. Antipi is a rousing incitement and cantankerous roar bred across eleven individual stirring aggravations of sound and imagination. Fair to say the band’s music still wears open inspirations at times but is now really showing its own character whilst unleashing tapestries of varied and aggressively delivered flavours.

Formed in 2010, Order of 315 draw on a host of styles from metalcore and hard-rock to progressive, djent, and alternative-metal; flavours bred in the experiences and tastes of its members with bands such as Black Label Society, Pantera, Machine Head, Slipknot, Stone Sour, Five Finger Death Punch, and Korn amongst individual sparks to their sound and imagination. The 2012 released Near-Birth Experience earned strong attention and acclaim from certainly the metal underground and media with its striking tempest, its seeds now blossoming into the creative voracity that is Antipi. The new album is more brutal yet equally richer in melodic tempting and certainly a more atmospherically volatile confrontation around a heart feverish in its resourcefulness.

Cover_RingMaster ReviewAntipi opens with A Slap On The Wrist and an initial sample stroked by an innocence drenched, single strand melody. It caresses the imagination, awakening ears ready for the swift assault on the senses of jagged riffs, beefy rhythms, and the instantly recognisable and welcome grizzly tones of Edgar Jabberwocky. His voice and delivery is a mighty lure alone easily igniting a pleased reaction in ears to match that being sparked by the growing rabid swing and antagonistic rumble of the sounds around him. The song is bullish rock ‘n’ roll, an easy anthem to get eager teeth into and a hungry appetite from, both fed with every passing swell of bruising enticement.

It is an outstanding start to the album quickly continued by Telescope. From its first groaning breath the track is a more imposing and intrusive proposition with the rhythms of drummer Pablo Civil unruly in their skilled design. Aligned to the predacious air of Grm Lecouflet’s bass, they make for a hostile yet gripping frame entwined by the thick winy grooves of Klaus Kersey, his guitar just as magnetic in primal riffery and sonic enterprise too. As with its predecessor, the track has hips violently gripped with its swinging challenge and ears hooked by its rapacious sound, Jabberwocky leading the incitement as masterfully as ever before The Feather Factor takes over with its industrial metal breeding and groove meets heavy/alternative metal tempestuousness. Subsequent switches into melodic flames bring a relatively undefined familiarity to things but only adds to the thick and captivating drama unfolding within ears.

Without quite finding the same dynamic impact as the first tracks, Abelian still keeps satisfaction fully whetted with its spidery melodic enterprise around a fierce tempest of a heart whilst the following Meiosis almost beats pleasure from the senses with the brutal rapier swings of Civil, though the atmospheric melodies, scything sonic trespasses, and unpredictable landscape of the assault are just as thickly tempting and alluring. Once more there is something recognisable in the spicing of the song but warped perfectly by its great bedlamic nature.

A creative composure lines Rumble Fish, the bass of Lecouflet a prowling protagonist leading the listener into the awaiting animus of the song. It never breaks its pleasing chains though, hinting and provoking with subtlety and atmospheric imagination whilst showing more of the growth in songwriting and maturity of the Order Of 315 sound, something clear across the whole of the album and indeed next up Data Warfare with its Korn meets Bloodsimple like turbulence with just a touch of Fear Factory adventure to it all.

Both the magnetically wiry Greyscale and the senses enveloping Densen keep things mean and keen; the first an inflamed mix of heavy metal and alternative rock as flirtatious as it is menacing whilst its successor crawls through ears with a slight but definite salacious sway to its evocative and intensive rock ‘n’ roll design. Both carry an attitude and hearty intimidation which, with the sonic imagination, sparks a want for more, a success just as easily drawn by the spiralling textures of Unperfect Circles. The track perpetually winds around the senses, the guitars especially influential in tempting out lusty enjoyment.

Drone brings Antipi to an end, the track a tangle of sonic craft and expression ridden by the brawly tones of Jabberwocky amidst a rhythmic tempest. Though in some ways the song takes longer to get to grips with, it is a fine end to another thrilling offering from Order Of 315. To be picky, there is a slight diminishing of unpredictability towards the rear of the release, until the final encounter anyway, but each track only ignites body and imagination to declare Order Of 315 one of the potent fresh roars within the metal scene.

Antipi is available now through numerous online stores.

Pete RingMaster 21/12/2015

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Undawn – Justice Is

UNDAWN-promofoto_RingMaster Review

To quote the press release of Undawn’s new album, “Justice, in its broadest context, includes both the attainment of that which is just and the philosophical discussion of that which is just. The concept of justice is based on numerous fields, and many differing viewpoints and perspectives including the concepts of moral correctness based on law, equity, ethics, rationality, religion, and fairness.” That just about sums up the fire in the belly of Justice Is, and in its individual explorations of varying aspects to the album’s theme. It also hints at the blaze of attitude, intensity, and defiance fuelling the Dutch quartet’s excellent second album. It is a proposition weaving familiar metal bred hues into fresh invention, breeding eager acclaim loaded reactions and the potential to push Undawn firmly into the strongest spotlights.

Formed at the beginning of 2007, Undawn quickly awoke local support through an adrenaline fuelled live presence and a pair of EPs, Dominate the World being uncaged that first year and The Roads To Despair in 2008. Fair to say it was debut album Jumpers which provoked broader attention, subsequently helping the band to play a torrent of shows across Europe. With Justice Is, Undawn have pushed their songwriting and sound to new ferocious heights, digging deeper into their imagination and craft to create a tempestuous weave of diverse and aggressive styles and adventurous flavours aligned to greater explorations of melodic and emotional incitement. The result is a confrontation which has ears aflame and thoughts eager to devour the provocation on offer. It may not be the most original album this year, though it is no cheapskate on fresh invention, but it is one of the most forcibly enjoyable.

Coverart-Undawn_RingMaster Review   Evidence of that comes straight away with opener Coming Home. From its first breath, the track is bullying the senses through bruising rhythms, abrasive riffs, and a mass band roar driven by by the lead vocals of guitarist Michiel Brinkhuis. Instantly ears and attention, not forgetting appetite, are in fully engaged in the provocation, perpetually tempted by the swinging grooves, vocal variation, and the tenacious energy and character of the song. With fellow guitarist Leon Kloosterman and bassist Thijs Brinkhuis backing Michiel vocally to potent effect, the track continues to twist through a weave of melodic and groove metal provoked further by flavours bred in the likes of metalcore and alternative metal. It is stirring stuff igniting a greedy response. in a tremendous start to the album.

The following What Justice Is keeps the heady beginnings going, guitars rich enticement from the off with their potent coaxing quickly reinforced by the growling vocals and rhythmic intimidation of Thijs Brinkhuis and drummer Tom Brinkhuis. By the time everything is united, the song is a sprawling and welcome invasion of the senses but soon realised as only one aspect to the many faces of a song as fiery melodic endeavour and harmonic vocals, the guitars of Michiel and Leon alone a web of sonic invention, colour the tempestuousness nature of the track.

In the Moment boldly strides in next, bluesy tendrils of guitar entwining the raw air and sinew built rhythms that quickly surge through ears along with more of the increasingly enjoyable and seamlessly changeable vocals from Michiel and the band. Like a mix of Pantera, Bloodsimple, and Bring Me The Horizon, the song thrills and spills its impressive traits and imagination over ears and an already hungry appetite for the album; that only given further bait to devour by the resourcefully antagonistic A Bond of Brothers and the sonic maze of Faceless. The first of the pair is a skilful merger of venomous aggression and invasive attitude with flowing melodies and vocal charm to sooth the more grievous exploits of their counterparts whilst its successor sculpts a wiry web of sonic tempting within the mix of emotively clean vocals and gladiatorial growls. Of the songs so far, it is arguably the least unique yet there is no escaping or dismissing the sublimely aligned and merged bold contrasts and conflicting energies.

Moving On similarly only impresses even if without breaking into major originality, especially with a core groove which gets the blood and energies rushing through the body in enjoyment. The skills and adventure of the band is a constant pleasure and an impossible to ignore heart to all tracks, easily proven here by the song’s organically rousing persuasion and too in the following Forever. It opens with a mellow croon rich with the great vocal qualities within the band, continuing to retain that emotive calm and elegance even as turbulence honed walls of intensity and sound grow to frame its evocative flame. The track gets under the skin early on and like any anthem increasingly stirs up emotions with its combined melodic and bullish splendour.

Raw and thrilling hostility shapes Fate next, though of course the melodic invention of the band is a just as heady part of the thumping rampage igniting ears with a blues kissed solo especially exhilarating within the storm before Never Giving Up, which features Björn Strid from Soilwork, takes over. That essence of defiance mentioned at the beginning is especially thick in the dramatic encounter which just seems to get stronger and more compelling with each of its diversely unpredictable and absorbing five minutes, and of course every listen.

Completed by The Puppets of Heresy, another making a strong impact initially but blossoming to greater stature with each dive into its volatile ravaging, Justice Is leaves ears blissfully ringing and pleasure thicker than the grooves helping bring that success. You may have heard more dramatically unique albums this year but many that are more exciting and emotionally fulfilling it is harder to imagine.

Justice Is will be available from December 11th via Graviton Music Services.

Pete RingMaster 11/12/2015

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Deadly Circus Fire – The Hydra’s Tailor

DCF_RingMaster Review

Casting a creative and impassioned roar which just gets richer and more compelling with every listen, The Hydra’s Tailor is a majestic beast of an album; a release that invasively seduces and cantankerously snarls. The second album from UK metallers Deadly Circus Fire, it has been the source of much attention and highly enthused praise already, so time we thought to get involved in its acclaimed proposal and fair to say disappointment was not on the agenda.

Fusing persistently unpredictable explorations of progressive metal and rock with just as magnetically carnivorous textures, The Hydra’s Tailor is already no stranger to drawing keen attention, just like the band’s debut album The King and the Bishop which was heartily embraced by fans and media alike. Drawing on inspirations such as Tool, Mastodon, and Deftones, the London based Deadly Circus Fire laid down a fiercely inviting teaser for this their latest emprise of sound and imagination through a couple of eagerly welcomed singles and since their release, they have signed with Musicarchy Media for the release of the crowd-funded, The Hydra’s Tailor as well as share stages with the likes of Crossfaith, Funeral For a Friend, and Bleed From Within across the UK and Europe. Right now they are lighting up European venues supporting Skindred on their Pump Up The Volume tour, just as The Hydra’s Tailor does the same to ears and speakers.

Artwork_RingMaster Review     The album starts with In Darkness We Trust, its keys spawned melancholic air embracing the immediately enticing and impressing voice of Adam Grant. The duet is bewitching, a solemn yet magnetic coaxing into the heart of the album and second track Animal. Riffs instantly begin prowling ears as it opens up predatory scenery, vocals again a potent enticement as the firm swings of drummer Paul Igoe resonate and the guitar of Save Addario spins expressive sonic enterprise around the still ravenous riffery. Grant again strikes with compelling vocals, his presence backed as resourcefully and potently by the tones of Mike Enort, whose basslines are no slouch when it comes to casting dark temptation either. Whereas the opener was a minimalistic treat its successor shows the shape of things to come with its unpredictable and seamlessly diverse landscape, it also a triumph in its own right.

The following Where It Lies expands from an acoustic flirtation into another mesh of wiry guitar tendrils and emotive flames, ebbing and flowing in aggression and intensity but relentlessly seducing in charm and adventure. As vocal craft and imagination shadows every step made by the ideation building the track, a scent of bands like Circles and Palms lay upon the fascinating encounter, Karnivool too in the song’s mellower moments but all spices to something already showing Deadly Circus Fire uniqueness.

Victim is another entering with an antagonistic glint in its creative eye, rhythms and riffs aligning their rapacious natures as Metallica-esque grooves line the emerging tempest. This time there is a whisper of bands like Bloodsimple and Lamb of God to another song which needs little prompting to evolve into new pastures of tenacious ideation and compelling craft, subsequently an air of Porcupine Tree and Tool just as suggestive across the outstanding incitement.

Another pinnacle comes with the stunning blaze of Devil’s Opera, a track as infectiously catchy as it is mouth-wateringly involved. It takes ears, emotions, and the imagination on a heady ride of united enterprise and individual exploration, a flight which twists and turns with an inventive turbulence that only ignites the appetite to greedier intent towards album and band. It is a forceful yet respectful invasion of the senses continued in Rise Again, it too aligning riffs and rhythmic rabidity with a fire of sonic invention and emotion driven melodic expression guided by the superb voice and delivery of Grant.

The brief instrumental tempting of Martyrs provides a relaxation for the senses next and a new spark for the imagination to play with before the exceptional House of Plagues groans and grinds ears with guitar endeavour around an enjoyably volatile blend of vocals. That bestial intent continues as melodies catch flame and rhythms jab with the stealth of a predator, all contrasts uniting in a scintillating emprise of emotive and provocative ingenuity, one that gets more ravenous and thrilling over each passing minute. Amongst so many within The Hydra’s Tailor that linger and relentlessly lure constant attention, as the album itself, the track is pure addictiveness as it takes best track honours.

Through the bold air and wonderfully fluid and varied tapestry of Aeden and the climatic atmosphere and soundscape of the album’s title track, The Hydra’s Tailor continues to enthral and tempt lustful reactions, its namesake another especially mesmeric blaze of dexterous songwriting and skills matched in sound. Both songs add thick layers to the epic nature of the album with the next up Turning the Tide equally as mighty with its agitated rhythms and sonic swirl of discontent. Equally within its stormy nature though, melodies brew, calm emerges, and bewitching harmonies entice to engross and excite before the turmoil returns in similarly exhilarating style.

The album is closed by the celestially lit, intensively aired Universe; a song which soars and bullies its way into ears and the psyche whilst leaving a great resonance and glow from its respective merger of harsh and tempestuous textures with absorbing beauty. The song is just masterful, repeating the major success cast before it across The Hydra’s Tailor with its own impressing adventure.

The good things heard and read about Deadly Circus Fire barely do the band justice, and now having been infected by The Hydra’s Tailor it feels safe to say if there are those yet to feel the power and prowess of the band the chance of finding reactions breeding the same kind of enthusiasm as us here, is high. There is only one way to find out of course and that is one of the heartiest recommendations made at The RR this year, go explore.

The Hydra’s Tailor is out now via Musicarchy Media @

Pete RingMaster 17/11/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Stone Cold Dead – Lava Flows

STONE COLD DEAD _RingMaster ReviewPhoto 1

Lava Flows is one of those encounters which grabs rigorously, cuts off all forms of escape and in turn plies you with intoxicating persuasion which leaves you woozy and desperate for more. The heavy weight groove fest is the debut album from Greek metallers Stone Cold Dead, a band entangling the richest essences of groove and heavy metal with those of experimental and alternative rock. The result is a virulent form of predatory rock ‘n’ roll which leaves a thick greed for more as ripe as the outright enjoyment experienced from its thrilling introduction to a band destined to great heights.

Stone Cold Dead is the brainchild of former Rotting Christ and Nightfall guitarist George Bokos, a project which is not so much a solo adventure but one luring the talent of equally experienced and innovative guests. The Athens hailing Stone Cold Dead gave a potent hint of the quickly impressing sound fuelling the album a few short weeks back with the release of the single Hubrism, a teaser which awoke intrigue and anticipation with ease band now proven to be just the one facet of a triumphant beast.

The first inescapable seduction of the album comes through the union of Bokos’ glorious baritone guitar enticement with that of Charis Pazaroulas’ (ex-Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra) irresistible bowed contrabass temptation. Both aspects are a theatre of invention and controlled rabidity, of creative attitude and expression colluding to create bestial stomps of fierce rock ‘n’ roll with an unrelenting appetite to devour and incite ears and imagination. That ingenuity alone makes Lava Flows a must investigation but add the majestic and fearsome rhythmic bait bullying and igniting the senses throughout , and you have a proposition which is pure metal alchemy. Split into three sections; Stone, Cold, and Dead, which “unfolds along the Cosmic Tree, which connects three different realities”, Bokos has given the three tracks in each part to a trio of exceptional drummers to drive, twist, and elevate the nature and personality of each movement within the album. Yannis Stavropoulos takes the first section, to be followed by Dimitrios (Vorskaath) Dorian, the multi-instrumentalist behind Zemial, and Nile drummer George Kollias respectively. It is an aspect to the release that just adds further formidable drama to the provocative journey of the album, a potency which makes more of a thrilling impact than was definitely expected.

cover_RingMaster Review     The album opens with Climbing The Cave and straight away it is prowling ears with sonic craft as a rhythmic rumble builds into an anthemic addiction. As becomes the diverse mouth-watering norm across the release, riffs nag and gnaw on the senses as quickly enslaving vocals and the jungle of beats from Stavropoulos descend to seduce and ravage the body. Like a mix of Bloodsimple, Killing Joke, and Black Tusk, the track swings its bait whilst drilling deeper in to the psyche with every torrent of rabid riffs and web of insatiable grooving. It is probably right to say our passions were hooked from this point, a submission ensured by the contrabass seducing of Pazaroulas but only confirmed time and time again across Lava Flows starting with Cyclone Speaking.

Instantly the second song is more bestial in the tone of guitar and bass, and strolling with an antagonistic gait soon drawing in melodically enflamed roars of sound and voice. Rhythmically things are another maze to explore and be willingly trapped by as the melodic tenacity of Bokos flirts and explores new designs and instincts within the bruising rock ‘n’ roll climate. As with its predecessor, swift submission and a lusty reaction from body and thoughts are given, a success found again by the album’s title track. Lava Flows, as its title suggests, smoulders and crawls from its first breath but around an already keen burst of rhythms which provide the spark for a subsequent sludge bred swagger as volatile in energy and hunger as it is immersive in weight and ambience. Pazaroulas again bewitches with his bow on strings whilst Bokos and Stavropoulos entrance as they turn limbs and neck muscles into their puppets.

An apt colder steely hue flows through the album’s Cold section, Death Drive preying on ears with increasing intensity and energy as a punk ‘n’ roll attitude and irritability runs through the song’s pulsating veins. The craft of Dorian has a more rock ‘n’ roll energy and swing to its attack which is translated in the sound around it, that in turn creating another strain of alternative and groove metal united in stoner-esque toxicity to grip ears.

Both The Black Snake and Hubrism transfix with their individual invention and natures, the first emerging on a tribalistic, mystique clad trespass breeding a caustically flamed swing of riffs and incendiary grooves. The perpetual niggling quality of both continues to make the juiciest irresistible bait matched by vocals, rhythms, and that contrabass and bass ingenuity, manna throughout the album. Here it creates an emprise of colourful melodic and sonic mystique within a net of addictive creative voracity whilst its successor is a more sinister and disentangled weave of voices and atmospheric intimidation crowded by a great irritant of waspish grooves and robustly dynamic rhythms. Once more songwriting and sound infests and twists the listener this way and that with startling invention and imagination, and though many elements are familiar there is no doubting they are employed and evolved into something rabidly fresh and unique to Stone Cold Dead.

The exceptional Deconstructing The Architect is the first offering in the Dead segment of the adventure, Kollias sculpting a wonderfully intrusive and anthemically invigorating wall of rhythms as the guitars open up their own net of inimitable and irrepressible imagination and craft. The body becoming a puppet to the strings of band and album is nothing new at this point but certainly strung out and sent into their biggest frenzy yet as the song builds into its Torche meets Mastodon meets Trepalium emprise of sound and temptation.

A shamanic scent opens up with the entrance of Umbilical Cord next, the guitar again spinning a sultry and exotic coaxing before the track erupts into its muscularly predacious and erosive glory, which itself is never absent of unpredictable and smouldering flavours from distant shoes and cultures. The track, as all, simply engrosses and thrills, a tempting emulated in the closing extensive exploration of And The Tree Becomes A Sphere, a travelogue of sound and inspiring hues in its own right that has ears and thoughts as enslaved as the emotions amidst a massive greed for more.

Lava Flows is real heavy groove woven magnificence for the ears, and even if others find themselves to be not quite as lustful in reactions as we found ourselves to be, Stone Cold Dead are still a big reward all should give themselves a chance of getting excited over.

Lava Flows is out now via digitally and on CD via Volcanic Music @

Pete RingMaster 10/11/2015

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Counting Days – Liberated Sounds

Counting days_RingMaster Review

With their new album our first acquaintance with and taste of UK metallers Counting Days, we cannot suggest how strong the anticipation for Liberated Sounds was, but such its thrilling ferocious roar there is no doubting its successor sometime ahead will be the subject of thick and eager contemplation. The London band’s momentous debut full-length gloriously gnaws on the senses, its metalcore/hardcore fury savaging and bruising the same with equal animosity, but it is a ferocity bred with a creative virulence and open imagination that simply whips up a frenzied appetite in body and emotions.

Counting Days emerged in 2014 from a union of former members of TRC, Heights, Rough Hands, and Last Witness. The heartbeat came through the continuing song-writing partnership of guitarist Charlie Wilson and drummer Lasselle Lewis, the pair previously uniting song providers in TRC. Next former Heights vocalist Thomas Debaere was enlisted to the new project to become Counting Days, his addition followed by that of former Last Witness guitarist Bobby Daniels and subsequently Rough Hands frontman Alex Dench who was brought in on bass and additional vocals. A leap forward to now and first album Liberated Sounds, which was produced by Fredrik Nordstrom (At The Gates, Arch Enemy, In Flames, Opeth, Architects, Bring Me the Horizon), Counting Days is poised to shake certainly the UK metal scene, but suspicions are it will not stop there, ahead or with this stirring debut.

cover_RingMaster Review     The quintet start it with Burned By Faith and an immediate vocal roar which backed by a wall of rhythms and riffs has ears bent back as in a wind tunnel whilst the senses cower. Without losing its raw intimidation and strength, the track twists into a vociferous stride driven by raging vocal roars, this in turn spawning a predacious and eager canter of musical hostility. Fearsome from the start, the rhythms of Lewis become more agitated and robust as the metalcore seeded tempest rages, they sparking jagged lines of riffs and caustic grooves within a lyrical look at the things people do in the name of religion. It is an intensive and attention grabbing launch by the album, one already showing signs of an invention which becomes increasingly pronounced in following tracks.

Die Alone is next, spinning a tasty groove from its first breath as the rapier swings of Lewis collude with the predatory tones of bass. The vocal union of Debaere and Dench abrases as it entices, the former arguably finding more vitriolic charm and hardcore potency in his delivery than in his previous band, whilst around them the track explores melancholic and stringed textures within its unrelenting rancor.

As impressive as the first two are, the album just gets bigger and more exhilarating, finding its pinnacle in the next clutch of songs starting with Beaten & Scarred. Spinning on an addiction of a groove, the track spews a creative and emotional animus that is as contagious as the anthemic vocal calls and irritable rhythms driving the torrent of catchy riffery. A punk raging and metal hostility, the song is superb; it’s swerving grooves and nagging hooks alone ensuring the maliciousness in its veins is greedily welcomed.

From one major triumph to another pair in Life & Death and the album’s title track. The first rumbles with rhythmic thunder and cantankerous guitar rabidity, both matched in fierce kind by the air scarring vocals. With a touch of Static X meets Bloodsimple to it, the song intensely and explosively bellows within a landscape of melodic enterprise and sonic imagination, the savaging fuel of the song never diluted by the more refined invention within it and that captivating imagination defiant to being overwhelmed by the storm slamming through it. The band’s latest single is the same, Liberated Sounds a merciless festival of debilitating intensity and voracity infused with deliciously gripping grooves, potent vocal variation, and a contagiousness that infests and ignites the soul with lingering ease.

Five tracks in and ears are ringing and the body breathless, whilst enjoyment is flooding thoughts and emotions and fair to say no respite from any of it, thankfully, is forthcoming as firstly Fire From The Sky uncages its heavy metal meets post hardcore antagonism . The song’s climate is a muggy and unforgiving swamp of incitement veined by the thick melodic enticing of guitar, a blend which gives further substance to the song’s look at the mental effects of war. It is a hard task matching up to the previous trio of tracks but the invasive and provocative heart of the song leaves no-one short changed before making way for the caustic embrace and inventive accosting of Days Go By and in turn the short and evocative instrumental oasis of The Vines. Its calm gives a respite whilst igniting the imagination with warm strokes of sound within a somewhat haunting ambience.

Sands Of Time descends on the senses next, again a prime groove wrapped in great irritable textures coring a blustery climate whipping up the senses before Prison Of Misery through an initial bewitching melodic drama and coaxing, turns into a bestial rampage of scathing vocals, scarring riffs, and a sonic snarl that turns every note and beat into an inescapable and greedily devoured vicious incitement. It is another major highlight, amongst many, of Liberated Sounds, rock ‘n’ roll taking no prisoners in its vehement entrapping of ears and passions.

The album is closed by the equally acrimonious, unforgiving, and enjoyable Cold Truth and finally similarly crafted and toned Reunion. The track is a fine end to the album but just a touch too samey to its predecessor, a slight issue which does crop up in slithers across the album. The final pair of songs is where it is most noticeable but with both tracks nothing less than fiery stirrings of pleasure it is a minor blemish just to try and temper our otherwise full ardour for Liberated Sounds.

All the members of Counting Days come with a good pedigree in their experiences and craft but for personal tastes they have hit a new plateau in their creativity and invention with Liberated Sounds, and yes already anticipation for its successor is brewing.

Liberated Sounds is out on October 16th via Mascot Records.

Upcoming live dates:

23rd October – Riverside, Sheffield

24th October – The Festing, Southsea

26th November – The Scene, Swansea

28th November – The Rainbow, Birmingham

29th November – Sanctuary, Basingstoke

3rd December – Packhouse, Leeds

4th December – Vic Inn, Derby

5th December – Grog & Fiddle, Cheltenham

12th December – Craufurd Arms, MiltonKeynes

Pete RingMaster 15/10/2015

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