Smash Fashion – Rompous Pompous

With a mere but rather tasty single in between, it has been a long wait for the successor to their highly enjoyable and highly praised third album Big Cat Love but finally US rockers Smash Fashion have unleashed its successor in the shape of Rompous Pompous and a devilishly mischievous and captivating proposition it is.

Eagerly anticipated, the album lives up to its excellent title with eleven slices of multi-flavoured rock ‘n’ roll which romp and stomp in a way only the La quartet can. As ever the band feeds on rich rock essences from across the decades; everything from fifties rock ‘n’ roll, sixties mod and psychedelia through to seventies punk/new wave aligned to eighties glam and hard rock going to flavour a sound just as spiced by subsequent years and modern enterprise. As its predecessor, Rompous Pompous is an adventurous and lustily fun stomp with the band but with even keener diversity and a sharper definition to its writing, performance, and character.

It opens up with Can’t Take You Anywhere and straight away a potent hook with something more than familiar to it keenly entices. It is just a lure though into the song’s own invention with the vocals of guitarist and band founder Roger Deering swiftly to the fore. Its classic rock breeding is littered with new wave and seventies pop rock flirtation, the tenacious rhythms of bassist Scarlet Rowe and drummer Reijo “Repo” Kauppila driving its boisterous stroll as lead guitarist Lloyd Stuart Casson weaves real temptation within the just as magnetic tease of keys.

It is a potent start to the release ensuring attention is firmly on board and equally strong as the following Soft As A Rock (Helium Head) takes its place with an air of Cheap Trick meets The Motors to it. Its infectiousness is swift and eager as hooks join grooves in casting a net of catchy enterprise around Deering’s ever alluring presence while within the album’s following title track the band pulls the listener in with a fifties rock ‘n’ roll nurtured saunter with a delicious B52’s-esque lilt to its blossoming revelry. The track is superb also hinting at the respective glam/art and hard rock of bands like Sparks and The Tubes as it caught ears and imagination.

Wolves Of Wonderland brings a blues flavouring with its steady hard rock canter next with not for the first time just a sniff of Queens Of The Stone Age to the melodic graining while Teenage Demon is a punk ‘n’ roll courting holler with a garage rock lining which swiftly had feet and neck muscles rocking. Again there is no missing a seventies/eighties seeded nature to the excellent track; a regular ingredient in the increasingly individual Smash Fashion sound.

Another putting a firm hand on best track honours is the Bolan-esque Proper Way To Eat A Muffin, its flirtatious almost salacious swing aligned to classic rock ‘n’ roll equipped with power pop boisterousness and lyrical devilment. Quickly and unerringly hitting the spot it had the body eagerly swinging before Runs In The Family adds further diversity to the release with its pop, punk and melodic rock collusion with a great resemblance to The Vapors to it. It too is one of the major highlights within Rompous Pompous closely matched by the Bowie kissed Tender Was The Hook, a song also embracing a sixties tone with a Hollies like scent to it.

Through the likes of the blues rock sprung Ugly Thugly and Gentle Hand with its slightly dirty melodic radiance around one irresistible hook, the album continued to light up ears even if neither song quite lived up to the heights of those before them. Nevertheless each left thorough enjoyment in their wake leaving the emotive balladry of Smiles & Daggers to bring the album to a fine close. Beginning with drama carrying piano with big shadow clad rhythms in close company, an entrance reminding of a certain Boomtown Rats classic, the song is a magnetic example of the more mature and bolder songwriting within the album. As all songs, deeper into its body you go more the different flavours and twists emerge to please and fascinate.

And that applies to Rompous Pompous as a whole, a release which gets you going from the off and just gets more intoxicating and infamous by the listen, much like Smash Fashion themselves.

Rompus Pompous is out now via Electric Pudding Recordings across most online stores.

 http://www.smashfashionmusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/smashfashion

Pete RingMaster 14/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Refusers – Disobey

“An album called Disobey by a group called The Refusers – you can’t get any more defiant than that, and that is exactly what rock and roll is supposed to be.”

The words of band founder, vocalist, guitarist, songwriter Michael Belkin tells all about the heart and intent of the band’s new and third full-length, indeed their sound overall. It is a collection of songs which snarl with defiance and irritability yet infest ears and incite the body with broadly flavoured rock ‘n’ roll in decades courting styles. Lyrically it reflects and attacks with incisive honesty and rigour while musically it has the body bouncing; a combination which makes the upcoming release of Disobey one compelling proposal.

Formed in 2010, Seattle hailing The Refusers sparked real attention with their 2016 album Wake Up America. It was a release which reflected and roared at a corrupt and twisted political and social world. It is fair to say things have not changed for the better in the world over the past two years and Disobey equally preys on its perverse habits and immoral practices. It focuses on the bad heart of America but as we all know it is a ruin reflected across the world from corner to corner.

Belkin links up with a host of musicians for the new album including bassist Steve Newton, drummers Sebastian Belkin (Michael’s son) and Brendan Hill from Blues Traveler, and keyboardists Joe Doria and Eric Robert, who has performed with John Oates, Keb’ Mo’ and Lucky Peterson. Disobey opens up with Playing With Fire and immediately lures ears with its blues tinted groove and potent rhythmic shuffle. Belkin’s vocals are soon joining the bold mix, adding accusing sparks as the track burned its presence upon the imagination. It is an intriguing start to the release, a song which did not explode on the senses but got under the skin by the second to arouse attention and an anticipation of things to come.

The following Why Do They Lie strolls in next with a deceptively calm swing, keys a tantalising lure in its developing melody nurtured rock ‘n’ roll. An instinctive catchiness soon had hips swaying as feet tapped; the track a swift persuasion before the album’s title track aroused the senses with its classic rock meets The Cars like canter. As lyrics focus and ensnare thoughts great hooks and fire bred grooves ignite the appetite, Hammond keys a tasty companion to the magnetism.

Eruption brings a call for change on a great funk ‘n’ roll saunter next, guitar and keys again a masterfully alluring incitement to accentuate rather than temper the lyrical charge while My Baby Loves Rock And Roll is a mischievous contagion echoing its title. It is a romp of the familiar and fresh which just hit the spot, swaggering along like an old inhibition evading friend.

Across Disobey, there is a seventies/eighties glaze to its rock ‘n’ roll, the following Fake News epitomising that essence with its melodic rock though to pin down straight comparisons is difficult thanks to The Refuser’s individual character of imagination and sound. The track was another which had us hooked early though the album was just as effective at pleasing ears with a more persistent almost nagging temptation as through Government Slave, another classic/hard rock nurtured proposal with tenacious hooks and teasing grooves.

The final pair of Free The Captives and Emancipation close the album up; the first a calmer but no less assured slice of rock balladry wrapped in the ever appealing embrace of keys. Its successor is a final cut of addiction flirting captivation; its chorus especially irresistible. As the album, there is something of Midnight Oil to the track, more in lyrical insight but also a little in its sound even with its more classic rock breeding, which just adds to the appealing hues at work.

Defiance and rock ‘n’ roll go hand in hand; always has and always will. The Refusers mix both with craft and adventure within Disobey; an album which may not be the most unique but leaves its rich mark rather enjoyably.

https://therefusers.com/   https://www.facebook.com/TheRefusers/

Pete RingMaster 12/06/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hogs – Fingerprints

Playing hard rock with a tantalising blend of funk, blues, and other varied flavours to it, Italian band Hogs have just released second album Fingerprints. It is an encounter which builds on a debut from Italians which certainly courted keen attention and has all the imagination to take the Florence outfit to a far broader placed audience.

The band’s seeds began in 2012 with guitarist Francesco Bottai, bassist Luca Cantasano, and drummer Pino Gulli; their creative union the spring board for the emergence of Hogs. The band’s line-up was subsequently completed by vocalist Simone Cei. 2015 saw the release of debut album, HOGS in fishnets via Red Cat Records who the band has again linked up with for Fingerprints. It was an encounter openly suggesting potential and imagination within its accomplished body; intimation now realised within its highly enjoyable successor.

Fingerprints opens up with Man size and instantly chunky riffs tempt with tenacious rhythms in close quarter. As it settles down, a blues spicing fires up within its classic rock setting, Cei’s potent tones at the core matched by the guest vocals of Carlotta Cocchi. Catchy in its swing, robust in its touch and wonderfully unpredictable in its enterprise, the imagination is soon caught in its drama, its array of styles and flavours woven into one strong magnetic start.

Stinking like a dog follows and is instantly casting a tantalising shuffle shaped by the dextrous swings of Gulli and the animated touch of Botta’s guitar. Hips could not escape the effect of the song’s swing, its funkiness, driven by the excellent tenacity of Cantasano’s bass, soon getting under the skin.

The infectious exploits of Mr. Hide is just as manipulative; its bluesy stroll and melodic rock shaped tempting a captivating launch to sonic flames and vocal reflection before making way for the warm sonic climes of Australia summerland. Again there is a classic rock breath to the song and though it misses the more unpredictable and adventurous twists of its predecessors, it leaves ears and appetite more than satisfied especially with the individual craft of the band in full display.

The jazzy air and touch of Down to the river needs little time to stir the imagination next, its reggae flavoured instincts just as magnetic as the organ of Federico Pacini; its inviting sway and the heart bred expression of Cei, a rich lure on top.

Across the likes of the boisterously magnetic Another dawn and the rousingly raucous Man of the score, enterprise and imagination fly from the speakers. The second of the pair is especially compelling with its animated rock ‘n’ roll while the increasingly captivating Can’t find my home is a web of alternative, hard and blues rock which teases with the familiar and refreshes with the individual. Pacini adds his keys to the escapade once again as too in Jewish vagabond which follows, this song a ballad with a lively smoulder and melodic elegance which too just became more magnetic by the minute and play, country borne sighs courtesy of Paolo Giorgi’s peddle guitar adding to the sunshine of the song.

Both songs relish the imagination open in varying degrees within the album, unexpected turns which surprise among more recognisable strains of enterprise and to be found within the closing pair of Don’t stop moving and Just for one day. The excellent first is one of the songs which seems so familiar from start to finish yet only pleasures and recruits keen participation alongside the imagination. The final track is a calm emotively cast ballad; a sunset of melodic and vocal intimation which caresses as potently as it flames around ears.

It is fair to say that the Hogs sound is not one we would naturally be drawn to but Fingerprints is a release we just took too. It is one which also grew in potency and persuasion play by play so worth a good look at we reckon.

Fingerprints is available now through Red Cat Records/7Hard now through most stores.

https://www.facebook.com/hogsband

Pete RingMaster20/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Paola Pellegrini Lexrock – Lady To Rock

Professional criminal lawyer by day, devout rock guitarist/singer/songwriter by night, Paola Pellegrini is an Italian artist with numerous strings to her bow and a sound just as versatile. She plays rock ‘n’ roll, a collusion of hard rock, punk, and metal which as proven by new album Lady To Rock is very easy to raise a healthy appetite for.

Hailing from the city of Florence, Pellegrini has been playing and writing songs since a child. Having played with various bands she began her solo career as Paola Pellegrini Lexrock, releasing her debut album Agape in 2013. Two years its successor, Dreams Come True was unveiled through Qua’ rock Records. Lady To Rock is her new collection of songs; a release which maybe evades major surprises in some ways but embraces fresh adventure in far many more.

For Lady To Rock, Pellegrini linked up with bassist Franco Licausi, who played for 20 years with Negrita and currently with Litfiba, and drummer Simone Morettin of folk metallers Elvenking. Produced by Giuseppe Scarpato and Paolo Baglioni at Wall Up Studio in Florence and mixed and mastered by Giovanni Gasperini, the album roars into life with No Half Way. Instantly riffs and grooves surround ears, rhythms punchy company before the quickly engaging tones of Pellegrini step forward to complete a potent persuasion. A tenacious slice of heavy rock ‘n’ roll, familiar but infectiously magnetic, it provides Lady To Rock with a great start to.

It is a beginning though which is quickly built upon by the excellent Lovely Man. More restrained in its charge but even more enticing in its hooks and beats, the track strolls long like a blend of The Kut and Australian outfit Shadowqueen. Punk and hard rock are brought together in its virulently infectious temptation, a rousing concoction which easily had us bouncing, the following Avuta Mai matching its depth of persuasion. The only non-English sung track on the release, it is an inescapably catchy proposal unafraid to slip into sonic shimmers and unpredictable twists as raw riffs and melodic enterprise unite behind Pellegrini’s vocal prowess.

The catchy prowl of Cut The Chains similarly had ears and attention wrapped round inventive fingers, the song teasing with its confident swagger, seducing with its melodic and harmonic captivation before Endless Begin uncages Pellegrini’s punk heart with simultaneous energy and grace. We mentioned that across the album, uniqueness was second to familiar strains and aspects of rock but as this excellent track proves, songs still comes with an individuality and adventure which sets album and artist as one appetising proposal.

Through the raw rock hues of Wild Shot, a Plasmatics meets Girlschool spiced stomp, and the pop rock exploits of Making Love Forever, variety, enterprise and pleasure rise in tandem while What I Like sonically grumbles and melodically serenades with imagination fuelled contagion. As with all tracks, little time is needed for hips to swing and enjoyment to boil up; fun and anthemic persuasion in close quarters as echoed yet again within You Better Believe. It too had participation engaged within moments of its first play; a magnetic slice of rock ‘n’ roll very easy to be manipulated by.

The album concludes with All My Love Has Gone, a final cut of all that is good about the fiercely enjoyable Lady To Rock. As its companions, the song feels like a friend even before it runs through its first verse, even as soon as its first clutch of chords, yet is as tantalising and refreshing as any track on any rock album heard so far this year. At its core rock ‘n’ roll is about great times, boisterous fun, and arousing spirits something Paola Pellegrini proves very adept at creating with Lady To Rock.

Lady To Rock is out now via Red Cat Records / 7Hard across most digital stores.

http://www.lexrock.it/    https://www.facebook.com/paolapellegrinilexrock/   https://twitter.com/PaolaLexrock   https://www.instagram.com/paola_pellegrini_lexrock/

 Pete RingMaster20/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hail the Hatter – Discovering Light

Being suckers for anything with a hint of insanity, lunacy, and mayhem we had a certain appetite to check out the debut EP from Trinidad outfit Hail the Hatter when offered the opportunity all because of its great suggestive cover. The Mad Hatter image on its cover sparked that eagerness and once inside we can certainly say the release more than satisfied on all three aspects. More so it revealed a band with a dab hand at creating infectious hard rock ‘n’ roll with a penchant for metal bred revelry.

Hail The Hatter was formed by guitarist Dax Cartar and vocalist Jonathan Boos, the pair swiftly enlisting drummer Nicholai Assam on drums, and Devin Harry Paul on bass. As the band began thinking about recording a clutch of songs they had written, personal reasons meant the bassist had to leave the outfit but was soon replaced by Aaron Lowchewtung. Produced by Maarten Manmohan and Nicholas Marsan, Discovering Light introduces the band’s fun infested sound to the world through six tracks, a sextet of varying but constant captivation lying in wait behind the opening doom laden introduction of The Coming of the Hatter.

From that dark threat and its storm coaxed shadows, the rapacious Bone Grin strolls, bass and beats lining the way as Cartar’s guitar teases and subsequently flames across the song’s swiftly installed swagger. Boos is soon in the mix with his vocal mischief and roar, hooks and grooves following as hard rock meets raw rock ‘n’ roll in the seriously catchy opener. Classic and glam rock traits add to the web of sound while metal nurtured invention brings devious aggression and predacious virulence to the mix; it all making for an easy to devour first stomp with Hail the Hatter.

It’s almost bedlamic prowess is followed by the devilish exploits of God Bless The Beast, the track like a punk infested fusion of Mötley Crüe and Converge. It needed little time to tempt and persuade, scythes of guitar and swinging rhythmic trespasses instantly igniting the senses even before Boos and Cartar uncage their creative appetites. The track is swiftly matched in success and enterprise by the groove woven A.O.A.U. Straight away its Caribbean toned rhythms had the imagination hooked, those subsequent spice flushed grooves adding to its inescapable lure. As with other tracks, the song’s sound is maybe not particularly unique but as its imagination, every twist and turn of sound brings a freshness which demanded keen attention.

The sinister psychosis of White Walls is accompanied by a prowling sound, its psychotic air and voice contagious rock ‘n’ roll as rich and loco as you could wish. Throughout its unhinged antics, riffs inflame rhythms swing, and grooves incite, vocal unity an anthemic icing to its predacious lunacy before Akasha releases its own shadow brewed shuffle and mystique coated melodic dance n the imagination. Middle Eastern hues hint and intimate throughout even as the flirtatious calm of the song erupts into just as addictive tempests. Everything is skilfully woven and passionately delivered with Lowchewtung uncaging one glorious dirt encrusted snarl of a bassline to cap the inescapable temptation.

Song by song the EP just gets bigger, bolder, and more impressive; continuing the trend with its final and best moment, its title track. From the opening dark groan of cello, Discovering Light just enthrals; its continuing stroll thick in suggestion and beauty as guitar and bass join its evolving drama. Equally a hint of mental instability flickers in its dance before the track unveils its full rapacious and increasingly frenzied rock ‘n’ roll. The track is immense, the show stopper even within a handful of similarly striking encounters.

Though Discovering Light had ears and attention in its hands pretty swiftly, it is with subsequent ventures into its creative dementia that its truly got under the skin, so much so that it has barely allowed anything else to grab a place on the just for pleasure turntable in our offices. The EP is not perfect if such a thing exists but gives rich pleasure from start to finish, never a bad thing in our book, and ripples with the potential of greater dark deeds ahead with Hail The Hatter.

Discovering Light is available now @ https://www.hailthehatter.com/media-get-album and for a limited time as a free download.

https://www.hailthehatter.com/      https://www.facebook.com/hailthehatter

Pete RingMaster 09/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Sourheads – Care Plan For The Soul

Since forming in the Spring of 2016, UK rockers The Sourheads has drawn increasing attention and support through their live presence, singles, and most of all their dirty, multi-flavoured rock ‘n’ roll. Now the band has added another accelerant to their emergence with the release of debut album Care Plan For The Soul. Offering nine slices of rowdy but skilfully woven incitement embracing classic and fresh rock diversity, the release thrusts the listener into a grubby cellar of salacious intent and irreverent sound; a temptation the body gets the urge to dance to and appetite the need to increasingly devour.

Hailing from Wakefield, West Yorkshire, The Sourheads embrace an array of inspirations in their sound ranging from Deep Purple, Kasabian and The Doors to Kyuss and Clutch. It is a web of punk and garage to psych and classic rock which is just as grungy as it is melodically enticing and within Care Plan For The Soul an incitement which makes a potent first impression but really grows in persuasion listen by listen. Mastered by Pete Maher (The Rolling Stones, Depeche Mode, U2), the album swiftly grabs ears and appetite with opener Demon. Straight away it is enticingly grumbling in ears, bass and riffs an irritable lure soon bound in sonic tendrils as familiar and new endeavours collude in the blossoming growl capped by the slightly gnarly tones of Jake Coxon. The bass of Ben Taylor continues to be a belligerent presence in the caustic captivation, guitarist Mik Crone and drummer Chris Lambert adding their bold touches to the ever evolving roar maybe best described as Turbonegro meets The Senton Bombs meets Guns n’ Roses.

It is a great start to proceedings which Morally High continues with its spicily grooved stroll. Carrying similar essences and flavours to its predecessor in its own individual way, the track is equally as infectious and magnetic with again classic and modern textures rubbing excitedly again each other within its controlled yet salacious swing. As the music, Coxon has a snarl to his croon, attitude dripping from every syllable and note before My Rock And Roll steps up to coax bad behaviour with its blues skinned devilry entangled in more of the great guitar enterprise which veins the whole of Care Plan For The Soul.

Power Of Addiction shares some of that psychedelic influence next; keys and melodies a sultry tempting while Rag And Bone Man has a great scruffy feel and character to its predacious gait and rhythmically rousing proposal. The song alone sums up the variety of flavours within The Sourheads sound, a host of rock bred essences embroiled in its inescapable command of body and imagination. It all adds up to one of the biggest highlights of the release, one quickly matched by the voracious punk ‘n’ roll of Don’t Get Caught (I Am The Lotus). Like The Stooges and Eddie and The Hot Rods caught in the act by The Vibrators as AC/DC hold the camera, the track is superb, taking best song honours with its manipulative temptations and craft.

Both Secret Cigarette and Warbird take a firm grip of release and listener next, the first an invasive but seductive fire of blues and classic grooves with punk bred kindling while its successor merges sullied rock ‘n’ roll with some of the most addictive melodic hooks and enterprise within the album for another pinnacle. As with many songs, it openly draws on some classic punk hooks and teases but equally shares psych rock imagination for the album’s most imaginative moment to stand alongside its best.

Care Plan For The Soul concludes with Mad Dog, a song rising from an initial Queen/Skid Row like invitation into an invasive and volatile ballad which becomes more captivating by the minute and listen, much as the album itself.  Indeed just as many will take to the release within seconds many others will need time to explore and discover its qualities; the big rewards for the attention we can vouch for as too the finding of a potential of even greater fun and adventure ahead with the Sourheads.

Care Plan For The Soul is available now through Oak Island Records on CD, Vinyl and Digitally.

https://www.thesourheads.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thesourheads    https://thesourheads2.bandcamp.com/

 Pete RingMaster 23/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

b.d. Gottfried – Something You Weren’t

Providing an intriguing teaser to his recently released new album, Something You Weren’t is a potent invitation into the musical world of b.d. Gottfried. The track is taken from Through The Dog’s Eyes, the successor to the well-received Motion Fever of two years back and hints at a new wave of creative energy and diverse flavouring in the already boisterous Gottfried sound whilst offering plenty of infectious enterprise to get wrapped up in.

Creating a lively mix of progressive and classic melodic rock with plenty of additional styles and spices, Canada hailing Bill Gottfried has grown from a kid of fourteen playing his first show, through years building his reputation as a session musician and writer, to an artist with a string of keenly played tracks across Canada, the US, UK and Europe as well as those previous seven increasingly acclaimed albums. Through The Dog’s Eyes is no different, being declared Gottfried’s finest moment yet, a claim which Something You Weren’t provides plenty of backing up for.

As the album, recorded with producer Siegfried Meier, Something You Weren’t emerges from a sonic fog with tenacious riffs and rhythms courted by a melodic excitement. Keys throw their dance into the mix soon after as Gottfried’s distinctive tones unveil the lyrical heart of the song.

Instantly catchy, the track swings along with a bold liveliness as the familiar imaginative enterprise of its creator plays. To that though, there is an air of confidence and a swagger in the writing and sound arguably not heard before in Gottfried’s songs. It all makes for a highly inviting and enjoyable moment in time as well as a strong lure to the exploits of Through The Dog’s Eyes and the continuing evolution in the b.d. Gottfried adventure.

Something You Weren’t and Through The Dog’s Eyes are out now; available @ https://bdgottfried.bandcamp.com/album/through-the-dogs-eyes

http://www.bdgottfried.com/   https://twitter.com/bdgottfried/

Pete RingMaster 17/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright