Naberus – Hollow

Around seven years after emerging upon the Australian Metal scene, Naberus released their debut album, The Lost Reveries. It was a well-received offering earning critical praise and confirming the Melbourne outfit’s potent presence within their national metal landscape. Now the quintet has unleashed its successor in the shape of the ravenously resourceful and compelling Hollow and it is fair to say the band has hit a whole new level.

The Lost Reveries was the band’s sound at the time at a pinnacle, one which was heavily influenced by melodic death and thrash metal, a mix honed over previous tracks and EPs since day one. Whilst Hollow also revels in those hues it reveals an embracing of a far broader template including essences of groove, nu, and technical metal. Everything about the new album is a growth from its predecessor, one which maybe will be a step too far for some original fans but will surely recruit a whole new tide of fresh appetites. At fourteen tracks it is a bulky proposal for sure which flirts with overstaying its time but one which pretty much constantly holds its strength and lure throughout before leaving with a bang.

Mixed by Henrik Udd (Bring Me the Horizon, Architects, A Breach of Silence) and mastered by Ermin Hamidovic (Architects, Periphery, Devin Townsend), Hollow launches at the listener with the outstanding Slaves. Immediately the guitars of Dan Ralph and Dante Thompson entangle ears with their sonic wires as the vocal snarl of James Ash harries ears. Djent spices infest the intensive blaze as other flavours collude in its rapacious web around the scything beats of Chris Sheppard and the predatory growl of Jordan Mitchell’s bass. Familiarity and individuality merge in its intensive roar, they all going to make a savagely raucous yet skilfully woven captivation.

The following Space To Breathe is just as swiftly imposing but inviting, taking a less invasive stance initially as its elements settle before uniting in its own ferocious trespass. Ash’s vocals again impress with their not vast but strong diversity within the emerging rich tapestry of sound. There are essences of bands like Spineshank and Static X to the track at times but equally it lusts after death and extreme metal textures with the same fervour and invention before the superb Split In Two uncages its own similarly but individually woven tempest. Harsh and melodic strains in both vocals and music make an easy union as the imagination in songwriting incites their drama, the track continuing the explosive success of the first pair ensuring that Hollow is already a riveting proposal.

Both Shadows and Webs nag the senses whilst seducing attention; the first a sonic harassment as adventurous as it is predatory with its successor, deceitfully calm at its start, a subsequent cauldron of fiercely simmering intensity with scalding eruptions and a persistently bubbling enterprise. True uniqueness could be said to be less potent within the two yet everything about them and all songs is as fresh and inventive as you could wish, the album’s title track further evidence. Its enmity is a harsh fury from the start, searing trespass and rhythmic lashing entangled in the sonic imagination of the guitars and the collage of vocal incitement. It makes for a dramatic and dynamic assault which just hits the spot like a sledge hammer.

Through the likes of the belligerently tenacious I Disappear, the corrosive reflection of The End and Seas Of Red with its almost feral tides and melodic fire, the album continues to delve into malice, aggression, and different degrees of variety in their individual characters. It is fair to say that the latter two of the three did not ignite the same energy of passion and acclaim as those previously within Hollow yet all easily enticed and pleasured before The Maze had ears lost to its creative course. Living up to its name, the thrilling song is a tangle of grooves and melodic vines within a formidable confrontation, each tunnelling through song and psyche alike.

My Favorite Memory similarly springs a spiralling union of endeavour within its dark catacomb but its mercurial exploration of emotion and sound quickly develops its own individual presence while Fading with far more savage jaws challenges and erupts upon the senses with enterprise and inventive dexterity, every member of the band creating a simultaneous threat and temptation within the track.

The album is closed up by firstly The Burrow and finally The Depths, both tracks leaving thick enticements in their wake for a swift return with the closing incitement within Hollow a labyrinth of irrepressible grooves and sonic wires through a lusty trespass of vocal and rhythmic animation. The track is another major moment within the release possibly its greatest following so many lofty peaks.

As a whole Hollow is a refreshing and rousing offering from a band deserving thick attention hereon in. Yes with so many tracks it might be a stretch in one go; a couple of times songs almost merging into each other in certain ways but each is an imagination and pleasure sparking assault in their own right and proving Naberus one exciting proposition.

Hollow is out now through Eclipse Records.

https://www.facebook.com/naberusband   https://twitter.com/NaberusOfficial

Pete RingMaster 10/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Crimson Star – Bay View

There is something very clever about the Bay View EP and the sounds it eagerly shares. Certainly the new outing from UK rockers Crimson Star sounds rather good from the off with a blaze of rock ‘n’ roll which may not dramatically impress but leaves a definite appetite for more. But like all relentless fires, it leaves little cinders in the shape of persuasive hooks and grooves which continue to catch in the imagination even in its absence. You could say the five track encounter is a slow burner in many ways despite its sizeable impact first time around and that is a success as potent as anything in our eyes.

Hailing from Birmingham, the threesome emerged in 2012 and since then has earned a rich reputation for their live presence and weighty alternative/melodic rock sound. 2016 saw the release of the Driven EP with the line-up of vocalist/guitarist James Shaw, bassist Roger Ash, and drummer Ross Edgington together. That well-received offering was recorded with producer Romesh Dodangoda (Lower Than Atlantis, Bring Me The Horizon, Funeral For A Friend), a successful union repeated with Bay View.

The EP opens with recent single The Pragmatist and straight away riffs and vocals lure attention, the increasingly grooved invitation of the guitar aligning with the equally potent scowling tones of Edgington. As it establishes its eager stroll, the song ebbs and flows in intensity without losing its instinctively infectious nature whilst always looking to evolve as melodies and the ever captivating grooves share their imagination. More addictive than it seemingly appears at the time, the song is a masterful slice of rock ‘n’ roll setting the release off to a great heavy and rousing start.

The following La Prom carries the same intent, instantly pushing through ears with a bold touch but soon revealing an atmospheric breath around crystalline melodies. Its calm has an underlying volatility which subsequently erupts as fiery grooves and raw riffs join an already laid bait of coaxing rhythms. With great fuzz to its tone and an edge to its energy, they aligning to further melodic enterprise, the song simply hits the spot.

Desert rock grooves fire up within next up Once, their spice leading to a grunge/alternative rock scowl which again is always looking to spring an unpredictable and imaginative adventure. Like its predecessor, the track does not have the immediate sparks of the opener yet grips from start to finish sowing that earlier mentioned niggle in its own way to return at will in the memory; a trait just as successful within Euthanise Me. The muscle of its grooves and rhythmic incitement courts a fine blues rock hue, a flavouring which blossoms within the following dark lit stroll the voice and bass take the imagination on. Like a blend of Foo Fighters and Pearl Jam with a slight touch of Kyuss, the song is unbridled captivation rivalling the first for best song honours.

The release is concluded by Gimme Some, another slice of intriguing rock ‘n’ roll which like the EP just grows and impresses with every listen. Grooves need little time to wrap their persuasion around ears though, melodic shadows and radiance working away on the imagination, as it brings Bay View to a magnetic close.

With double figure listens under our belt, it is fair to say that Bay View has become a keenly devoured and praised proposal. It took its time with us despite its potent start and we can only say share some of your time with Crimson Star to discover some prime heavy rock; it is hard to imagine you will be disappointed.

Bay View is released January 19th

https://www.crimsonstarrocks.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thecrimsonstarmusic    https://twitter.com/tcsmusic

Pete RingMaster 17/01/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Saltlake – Medicate Me

As much as talent and craft helps a band step out from the crowd having a sound with distinct character to it is just as potent a weapon. On the evidence of their new EP, UK alternative rock trio Saltlake has found that key. It may not have true uniqueness yet but there is no escaping a captivating prowess and enterprise which commands attention.

One of the first things the Medicate Me EP hooks ears with is the depth and expanse of its sound, a soundscape of electronic and electric drama which belies the slim number of the band’s personnel. It comes drenched in emotional intensity and a hungry energy which again only adds to its potency. Consisting of vocalist/guitarist Henry Gottelier, bassist Liam Quinn, and drummer John Godly, Saltlake emerged from within the Sussex countryside and London suburbs in 2013. Medicate Me is our introduction to the band and takes short time in sparking an appetite to hear more.

It opens up with Badlands, keys and rhythms looming up on ears bringing a tide of riffs and melodic intrigue. The robust and enticing rhythms of Quinn and Godly probe and incite as Gottelier’s strong and alluring tones roar. As quickly familiar essences grab thoughts but only adding to the richness of the track in sound and tone as it simmers and boils with creative and emotive enterprise. Comparisons to the likes of Young Guns, Mallory Knox, and Bring Me The Horizon have been made with the threesome and it is easy to hear why through the EP opener.

The following Sympathy Apathy entices initially in a similar way to its predecessor if with less of an imposing trespass. It too casts a dramatic tapestry of sound swiftly upon ears, melodic suggestion wearing an early U2-esque hue to whet the appetite before Saltlake weaves their own individual theatre of sound and adventure. As with the first, there is a mix of the familiar and the fresh entwined to catch the imagination; creating a song which mixes unpredictable and recognisable flavours to push the release to another level.

Hourglass simmers and erupts next with melodic persuasion and emotive intensity, vocals as reflective as keys and guitars against the more formidable touch of rhythms. It is a track which just blossoms from moment to moment and listen to listen. The drama of synths and melody are matched by the prowess of voice and creative imagination fuelling a song where though there is something familiar nagging away with one of its key hooks, though still to be exposed in realisation as to why, it soon steals the limelight within Medicate Me.

The EP closes with its title track, a proposal rising from an electronic mist around a dark bass throb into an atmospheric heart bred croon prone to more volatile, ear grabbing cries of emotion and intensity. Even with its thick haunting air the song is as catchy as anything before it and brings things to a highly enjoyable conclusion.

As suggested, Medicate Me is a mix of the familiar and individual which increasingly impresses over time from a band which is heading the right way towards real attention.

Medicate Me is available through all stores now.

https://www.saltlakeuk.com/     https://www.facebook.com/SaltlakeUK     https://twitter.com/saltlakeuk

Pete RingMaster 16/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Bad Llama – Apocrypha

UK band Bad Llama emerged early last year and swiftly poked eager attention with the release of first EP Shedding Skin and its lead single The Wolf You Feed from fans and media alike. Now ahead of their upcoming follow-up EP, Crooked Empire, the Burton upon Trent quintet ups the ante with the release’s first track, Apocrypha.

It is a powerful and rousing encounter which demands attention whilst revealing a new maturity and intensity in the band’s multi-flavoured sound. A list of Bad Llama’s inspirations reveals an eclectic mix ranging from Red Hot Chili Peppers, Incubus, and Tool to Korn, Faith No More, Rage Against The Machine and Bring Me the Horizon; a mix equalled in the metal and heavy rock bred enterprise of a sound also bearing the spices of progressive and industrial nurturing. As previous releases suggested, what emerges is a sound distinct and becoming more unique to the band; Apocrypha another definite potent step towards that originality.

Recorded with producer Gavin Monaghan, Apocrypha moves in on ears with an almost predacious atmosphere and similarly swinging beats, its threat dissipating slightly as Kyle Jordan’s expressive tones step into the web of suggestion cast by the guitars of Dan Houlbrooke and Sam Wyatt. The gnarly snarling bass of Lewis Hutchings though keeps the intimidation flowing; a delicious texture prowling the sonic temptation continuing to entangle the imagination of song and listener as Gaz Waddell’s beats bite.

It is a captivating mix in a song which grows and blossoms in thought and enterprise with every passing second. Apocrypha is a masterful proposition, skilfully crafted and emotionally intense which it is hard to see not stoking up attention for Bad llama and anticipation for that forthcoming EP.

Apocrypha is self-released November 10th.

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Pete RingMaster 04/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Witterquick – Fire & Ice

With a sound which sits rather nicely yet individually among the likes of Brand New, Young Guns, and Mallory Knox, UK outfit Witterquick has been stirring up plenty of praise carrying attention their way over the past year or so which new EP Fire & Ice can only re-energise. Offering four slices of their melody rich, emotion thick, forceful rock ‘n’ roll, the release confirms the band’s rising presence in the British music rock scene.

With success and acclaim already stoked by their debut EP, Beneath the Spinning Lights, and a sold-out UK tour with Nothing But Thieves among their own shows, Witterquick linked up with producer Romesh Dodangoda (Bring Me the Horizon, Lower Than Atlantis, Twin Atlantic) for Fire & Ice. Straight away it hints at the reasons for the increased attention upon the band, opener Shattered Suns skipping in on a summery breeze before rhythms pounce and the voice of Will Alford impressively grabs ears. The simmer of keys flirt among the tide of riffs and rhythms, guitarists Ben Chanter and Sean Davey creating a web of melody and hooks which tempt infectiously within the invitingly imposing strikes of Andy Lewis’ drums and the brooding tones of Ollie Chanter’s bass. Swiftly infectious and increasingly so as Alford impressively leads the way with his potent voice, the song grips attention and appetite.

A single which has already earned the band eager radio play, Lie To Me follows with its gentle but catchy swing and warm melodic embrace. There is a more caustic edge to the song which swarms its shadows to add further depth to its presence, but it is the emotive tide and melodic dexterity of the band and songwriting which fuels its character to great effect. Though for these ears its predecessor is a mightier lure into the EP, there is no denying the track gets under the skin and into the hips with its accomplished heat and tenacious catchiness.

Hiding Place brings a rockier swagger with its robust presence next, rhythms almost assaulting the senses with their forceful nature. It is a pleasure emulated in the fiery textures erupting from the guitars as the harmonic strengths of Alford are matched by his enterprise on keys. Emotionally and musically anthemic, the track really hits the spot in swift time, it too a perfect lure into the creative heart of Witterquick.

The release is closed up by the gentle fires of I Need A Friend Tonight, a melancholic reflection with crescendos of intensity and emotion which really blossoms over listen. It epitomises the band’s intelligent songwriting and layered sounds, over time breeding the same kind of infectiousness its rowdier companions generate more quickly.

It would be wrong to say that Fire & Ice blew us off out feet yet every moment with it has brought thick pleasure and an intrigue flooded hunger for more and there is nothing wrong with that at all.

Fire & Ice is out now and available @ http://witterquick.bigcartel.com/

http://www.witterquickband.com/    https://www.facebook.com/Witterquickband    https://twitter.com/witterquickband

Pete RingMaster 17/10/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

CRNKSHFT – Self Titled EP

Photo Credit – Alex Barredo

We surely have a soft spot for things carrying real punch and that is exactly what the new self-titled EP from Canadian outfit CRNKSHFT has in sound and presence. The four track offering is an imposing roar of hungry and varied metal but equally shows a blaze of hard and melodic rock ‘n’ roll, a trait even more compelling in the successor to their previous well-received debut EP helping stir up a very healthy appetite for the band’s fierce and rousing attack.

Hailing from Vancouver, CRNKSHFT (pronounced crankshaft) have begun waking attention far beyond the local scene they have already been devoured by. Support slots for the likes of Lordi, Prong, Grim Reaper, and The Veer Union have capped a powerful live presence and reputation to date, one like their releases beginning to stir broader spotlights. Providing the evidence, their recent single Systematic won an award from the Academia Awards Academy in Los Angeles and there seems little to stop the Daren Grahn (Metallica, Hedley, Mötley Crüe, Bon Jovi) produced EP nudging greater focus their way.

That single opens up the EP, Systematic instantly stroking ears with grouchy riffs before a wave of tenaciously swung beats and wiry grooves join the initial wave of snarling guitar and the mutually striking tones of vocalist Shane Jolie. With equally rapacious melodic strands breaking through the aggressive trespass driven by Josh Lauze’s potent beats, the song develops a Nonpoint meets Five Finger Death Punch like incitement loaded with the band’s own fresh and inventive attributes. The infectious growl and stride of the song is inescapable, guitarists Geoff Way and Sebastian Mark Pulse casting a web of voracious enterprise as intrusive as it is flirtatious; a union the song embraces as a whole.

The following Tears Me Apart bursts into life with its own antagonistic yet welcoming blaze next, riffs and rhythms ravishing the senses but equally content to pause for melody warm breaths. The calmer moments still have a shadowy air as the bass of Trevor Miles courts the peace while Jolie springs his own diversity of magnetic attack throughout. With unpredictable essences emerging, occasionally with a Korn like nature, the song leaves pleasure full before Old Habits has its go at exciting ears. Another of the singles tempting anticipation the way of the EP, the song assertively simmers and boils; its robust imagination lined body a raw fire of Three Days Grace/ Bring Me The Horizon like dexterity and adventure.

Again, it is a song with something individual to CRNKSHFT in its dynamics, a welcome trait even bolder in the dark prowl of Breaking The Silence; a track virtually stalking ears from its start before its emotive and volcanic heart erupts, a cycle then repeated with fluid craft and invention. The most unpredictable moment on the release, it is as cantankerous as it is melodically reflective in tone. Fierce and venomous whilst contagiously engaging in touch, the song ensures the EP ends on the same major high it started with, heights closely nudged in between.

With familiar textures and essences in its design, the CRNKSHFT’s sound and EP do not quite find major originality but the signs are there, as strongly proven by its closer, whilst enjoyment is already a done deal. Things are looking good for band and ears.

The CRNKSHFT EP is out now across most online stores.

https://www.facebook.com/crnkshft/   http://www.crnkshft.com/

Pete RingMaster 27/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Elasea – Lesson Learnt

Having impressed in sound and potential with their debut EP two years back, British alternative rockers Elasea have just unveiled its successor Lesson Learnt. With a new addition to the Reading hailing band’s ranks, the EP quickly shows a new maturity and creative elegance in their songwriting and music. It is a magnetic affair for ears with plenty of reasons to suggest that Elasea are going places within the UK rock scene.

Emerging in 2013, Elasea potently poked attention with the Where I Belong EP, the release swiftly drawing praise the way of the quartet. Their growing reputation was also supported by a live presence seeing the band share stages with the likes of Funeral For A Friend, AllUsOnDrugs, Veridian, and Echoic. That time between releases has seen Elasea’s four strong line-up extended to five with the incoming Braydie Haskell adding prowess on keys. It is a notable essence certainly going some way to sparking the new rounded and inventive growth in the band’s sound but across all members, individual craft and imagination has openly blossomed.

Lesson Learnt opens up with Breathe, a sombre yet bright melody caressed by wistful keys initially coaxing ears, leading them into the waiting tide of rapacious riffs and rhythms. Their controlled but obvious urgency is accompanied by an emotive intensity which is even bolder in the strong vocal presence and expression of rhythm guitarist Andy Bradford. With bassist Liv Jones adding plenty of captivating vocal presence too, along with the muscular strains of sound, there is a Sick Puppies like essence to the song which only accentuates its appeal and imaginative character. On top, the keys are a well of emotive suggestion, a poetic glaze to the rawer texture of guitar and the meaty rhythms shaping the excellent track.

The following Time Stops is a similar fusion of metallic strength and melodic beauty; keys and the melody courting guitar of Calum Radmore weaving melancholic grace and sentiment as the lively beats of Ashley Haskell probe and incite the senses. With Jones’ bass grumble emotionally vocal, the track is a croon of shadow and open hearted yearning led by the vocal potency of Bradford again magnetically supported by Jones.

The more skittish air and intensive weight of On My Own shows another aspect to EP and the Elasea sound, the song more akin to the likes of You Me At Six and Bring Me The Horizon though still that early hint of the aforementioned Australian rockers prevails at times. They are flavours though adding to the growing uniqueness in Elasea’s music rather than shaping it, and enjoyable hues in the irritable character and tempestuous adventure of the third richly enjoyable song.

These Secrets is an instrumental interlude evocatively drifting over the imagination, its atmospheric presence maybe more pleasurable padding then essential to Walls, the final song adding infectious bounce and plaintive heart to the already impressing release. The electronic shimmer of synths cradles another great vocal union between rhythms guitarist and bassist, their harmonic contrasts and unity accentuated by the fiery ear charming nature of the sounds around them.

Elasea have made a big step in moving away from the crowd with Lesson learnt, the growth in their sound highly appetising. There is still room for true uniqueness to evolve and that is as exciting a prospect as the EP is for ears right now.

Lesson Learnt is out now through all platforms and @ https://elasea.bandcamp.com/album/lesson-learnt-ep or http://www.elasea.bigcartel.com/

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Pete RingMaster 22/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright