Invoker – Cursed To Feel EP

As thick in emotional intensity as sonic ferocity, Cursed To Feel is the new EP from Swiss hardcore outfit Invoker. It is the successor to the band’s acclaimed debut album of 2017, Four Wall Nightmare, and a tempest taking the uncompromising intensity of the band’s previous offering as well as its sweeping post rock turbulence and soaking it in a whole new squall of heart and imagination. The result is a physical and emotive trespass which is unpredictable, impassioned, and mercilessly compelling.

Since emerging in 2012, the Lucerne quintet has increasingly made their mark and built a potent reputation with their release and hardcore/post hardcore fusion. As Cursed To Feel proves there is plenty other hues to a proposition which they honed and have evolved since their first release, the Loose Lips, Sink Ships EP of 2013. Similarly their hungry and rousingly intensive live presence has grown and flourished, Invoker sharing stages with the likes of Landscapes, Being As An Ocean, Counterparts, Napoleon, and Break Even amongst so many along the way. Through each release Invoker has pushed their songwriting and sound, it all leading to their new triumph.

Cursed To Feel stirs into life with a single guitar lure, a melodic string which barely has time to breathe before the storm inside Black and Blue violently erupts. The throat raw fury of David Lukas sears ears and air as a maelstrom of sonic animosity ignites around him, guitars nagging but equally inciting the senses as rhythms pounce with little restraint. It is a potent mix yet the track really blossoms as small but strong ebbs in the maelstrom intrude, that attention grabbing enterprise subsequently sparking further imagination bred twists and creative insertions drawing diversity in sound and voice.

The excellent start is surpassed by the emotion charnel house of Cursed though in no time the song aligns melodic elegance and infectious grooves to devouring angst bursting hostility. As all tracks, it swings through moments of unsettled calm and ferociously harsh expulsions of heart and noise to intrude and beguile before The Novel unveils its own collusion of raw and harmonic dexterity drenched in pain and corroded but certain hope.

With Cease To Exist a brief but ravenous and invasively captivating onslaught and End Me providing the EP’s darkest and for us its most poignant not forgetting emotionally relatable and quarrelsome moment, Cursed To Feel continues to expose scars and understanding within a pleasure  inspiring tempest.

Invoker already has a fervour driven fan base but it is simple to expect Cursed To Feel to spark its bold growth and thrust the band towards major recognition.

Cursed To Feel is out now via Grim Reality Records and available @ https://weareinvoker.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/weareinvoker/

Pete RingMaster 20/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Blood and rage: exploring the roar of Incentives

Incentives_RingMasterReview

Bred in and roaring from the heart of the Australian melodic hardcore/metalcore scene, Incentives is poised to release new EP Dusk. Already drawing potent attention their way, the release is sure to accelerate awareness of the striking quintet. We recently took the chance to explore the band ahead of the EP’s unleashing and get to the core of the potential fuelled outfit…

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

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

Holla! We are Incentives, a band out of Melbourne, Australia. We started about three years ago thanks to our guitarist Rory bringing us all together.

Is Incentives your first musical adventure?

None of us had really been involved in anything of any real significance before the band. I suppose it was kind of cool that we can all call this our first and only band!

What inspired the band name?

Honestly, I’ve no idea what inspired the name it was more of a “this will do for now” kind of thing, and then it just stuck and we’ve grown to really love it.

Did you come with a specific idea when forming the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

We really had no idea what we wanted to sound like or anything along those lines. I feel that this has in a way helped us to find our own sound which I believe we are honestly starting to do.

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

Well I guess it grows a bit. We started off happy just playing any show, but now we are looking to play bigger shows, get on more tours and just generally keep growing as a band!

Photo Andrew Bromley

Photo Andrew Bromley

Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved?

I’d say it’s just constantly becoming a more refined sound. We were all teenagers when we first started and so now we are finding we are making a more complete (whole) sound. Slowly learning what suits us and what doesn’t and hopefully making stuff people will enjoy too.

Has that refining been an organic movement or more through the band deliberately setting out to try new things?

I’d say pretty organic, nothing is forced within the group. We obviously always like to experiment, some of which works, some that certainly doesn’t but it is all part of moving towards a unique sound.

Presumably across you guys there are a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

I couldn’t really name one specific band or artist that has really changed our approach, but bands such as Volumes and Counterparts have provided a massive influence on our writing and sound. Parkway Drive is probably the reason we all got into this kind of music in the first place so they deserve some credit in here that’s for sure!

Is there a certain process to your songwriting which generally guides the writing of songs?

Usually our guitarist Max will write some riffs and melodies and then our drummer Joe will program drums and then Kyle our vocalist will write all his lyrics and patterns over that.

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

Everything is based off life experiences. And more specifically they are based around relationships, with friends, loved ones, and family. Sometimes things will get exaggerated, but who doesn’t love a bit of a story hey!

Can you give us some background to your latest release?

Our latest release is Corrode which is the first single off our upcoming EP, Dusk, set for release on the 30th of June. It’s a fast paced hard-hitting track with our mate Max from Imprisoned art_RingMasterReviewfeaturing in it and doing a stand up job.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind it and other songs.

I’ll answer this from the viewpoint of the whole EP (yet to be released). It’s all to do with relationships and the ups and downs to pretty much every little emotion and situation that defines them. Corrode in particular is about dealing with a partner that is suffering from a mental illness and just how damaging it is to not only them but to you too.

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

It’s a bit of both really! We usually go in with a pretty decent idea, but there are always aspects that still need writing or changing and Sam who produces our stuff and also writes for his band Ocean Grove really helps us out.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably a favourite aspect?

Absolutely! We all love playing live. We like to think we are pretty high energy band, lots of bouncing around and head banging. If it’s fun for us, we figure it is fun for the audience!

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands?

Oh for sure! There are sooooo many bands out there at the moment and to stand out you really have to do everything right all the way from image to music and live performance. Melbourne in particular has a ridiculous amount of talent (Void of Vision, Ocean Grove, Sentinel) just to name a few. I guess what we do to separate ourselves is just play our style and hope people dig it. High quality production of music and promotional work is of huge importance if you’re going to get anywhere!

Incentives2_RingMasterReviewHow has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success?

Without social media I doubt we’d be anywhere. In fact this is a certainty. We were lucky enough to get to tour overseas last year and I know for a fact that we were discovered via social media! So best we all pray to the Facebook God’s and hope that our ridiculously over-priced Facebook Boost’s get us some decent exposure!

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

Thanks for having us! Keep an eye out for our debut EP coming June 30th which hopefully you will enjoy!

https://www.facebook.com/IncentivesMelb   https://incentivesmelbourne.bandcamp.com/

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 10/06/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Choking On Illusions – Rest/less

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Hailing out of South-West Germany, Choking On Illusions is a band which looks like they are about to be on the receiving end of an enthusiastic roar of attention. The reason being their new album Rest/less; a beast of a melodic hardcore incitement which is as fiercely confrontational and emotionally voracious as it is inventively compelling. On first listen, it is not one which instantly leaps from the crowd though it certainly is a more riveting and fascinating encounter than most, but over time it reveals an imagination and craft which leaves ears and attention gripped. You would still not say that the second full-length from the Saarbrücken quintet is going to turn the hardcore scene on its head, but it definitely gives it an exciting proposal to chew over.

Formed in 2008, Choking On Illusions has frequently awoken keen and increasing interest in their presence; a self-titled EP in the following year starting the growth which was backed and nurtured further by a two track demo in 2010 and the band’s keenly supported live presence. It has been from the current line-up’s coming together a year later though that the band and their sound really hit its stride, as established by their well-received debut album Guide me home in the summer of 2012. Alongside all these moments the band has similarly drawn great praise and following through shows with the likes of Stick to your Guns, Comeback Kid, Terror, Evergreen Terrace, Hundredth, Counterparts, and La Dispute amongst a great many, as well as tours with The Green River Burial, Wasted Bullet, Chronograph, and Seasons in Wreckage. It all only reinforced and enriched their emergence in the hardcore scene. Now the band is lining up to burst into the broadest spotlights with their Bastardized Recordings released Rest/less, and given the time and focus it needs and deserves, it would be hard to expect anything but further potent success.

The opening Intro is a decent enough emotional scene setter, guitars melodically eloquent within a heavily brooding atmosphere whilst leading ears and imagination into the jaws of the following album title track. The second track bursts into life with ravenous rhythms and fiery riffs, each intensifying as the vocals of Mario Strasser begin their agreeable roar and the guitars of Jannik Aulenbacher and Maciej Spiczak align in a tempting mix of caustic riffery and sonic enterprise. It is when singer and melodies really erupt in an infectious and lively embrace that the song truly comes alive, their brief expulsion of revelry infecting the subsequent antagonistic side of the song which too develops an intriguing mix of catchiness and emotional provocation. It is a great start to the release, and like the album, it takes time to explore all its twists and depths, though its appeal and appetite sparking potency is swift.

Choking on Illusions Cover   The following Sleepwalker explodes in a creative and impassioned tirade you expect to hear in a hardcore based offering, continuing to feed with satisfaction those thoughts but twisting them into fresh endeavour through the persistently thoughtful and skilled ideation of the guitars. As in its predecessor though, there is a particular moment where the good song ignites into something greater, and here it is the lull in the sonic tempest where the bass of Christian Pontes takes over with a richly carnivorous bass tone matched in intimidation by the muscular swings of drummer Dustin Ueckert. It is a mere moment in the passage of the track but again seems to instil a new attitude and impact into the following adventure and passion of the proposition.

Both Left Unsaid and 13 rage and bellow with explosive and intriguing creativity, the first punctuated by the thickest rhythmic jabs yet on the album but tempered by a tantalising flame of impressive vocal harmonies and guitar crafted melodic acidity. The song continues to be unpredictable and enthralling, a slip into an acoustic landscape bewitching in company with calm and captivating clean vocals. Its heart felt and raw emotion though is soon back filling the senses, and again it is fair to say this also seems to return with a new air and vitality in its angst and sound. It is of course all sparked by the band’s dramatic adventure in songwriting and sound, with these moments seeded in a strong array of flavours outside of hardcore. They are essences not always apparent at the start of songs but emerging impressively throughout and something the band will hopefully utilise even more ahead as this is when Choking On Illusions impressively breaks free of any formulaic hardcore restraints and expectations. The song’s successor is the same, spinning a recognisable initial weave of sound and aggression built on open invention before sculpting a predatory net of rhythms and sonic imagination. It is the most straight forward song on the album in many ways but when relaxing into a smouldering embrace of warm melodies and intimate vocals to again cast a new light on its body and heart.

The disorientating dazzle of guitar and rhythms at its start sets Borderlines off in fine style and initially it is a shame it is not a constant incitement throughout the excellent track, the band preferring to unleash it in bursts amongst the muscular antagonism of the song. The truth is the band get it right, its intermittent diversity makes for thrilling eruptions of bedlam in the ferocious roar of the song and the subsequent melodic poetry charming from its heart. The song is superb, whilst the album simply gets stronger and more exciting with every offering.

The peaceful radiance of Interlude allows a breath next, its brief instrumental a classic hug of keys but as the intro, embraced by a more and increasingly turbulent ambience. Its beauty makes way for the fiery energy and intensity of Broken Song, a blaze of an encounter with deep anxiousness to its air and hostile emotion fuelling its fury. It is another which simply grows in weight and persuasion as it reveals more invention and unpredictable ideation once established in the ears; post and melodic hardcore colouring its ire as forcibly as a punk viciousness.

A new peak is set with the hellacious charge and presence of Death Waltz next, the track a thunderous predator of the senses unafraid to draw on noise rock and metallic essences to ignite its creative battlefield. Complete with soaring harmonies and sonic intricacies, the song is a raucous anthem and impassioned croon simultaneously, and quite sensational in its distorted and scuzz lit brilliance giving next up L.O.V.E. a hard task to emulate. It gives a mighty effort though with a bass sound from Pontes which is raw and carnal in touch, whilst a blistering furnace of sonic rapacity and vocal incitement treats the senses. It also has that fresh onslaught of punk hostility to it which seeps into the album’s latter tracks to enjoyable success.

Closing track Baptism – Funeral enters on a rhythmic enticement from Ueckert which alone secures hungry attention, and continues to drive and ignite the solemn and melancholic heart of the increasingly ferocious encounter. It is a mighty end to an outstanding release, one sure to put Choking On Illusions on the widest hardcore map and suggesting potential of greater things yet to come, though more of the same to be fair would not be too disappointing either.

Rest/less is available from March 27th via Bastardized Recordings @ http://shop.bastardizedrecordings.de/product_info.php?products_id=2411

https://www.facebook.com/ChokingonIllusions

RingMaster 26/03/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://reputationradio.yooco.org/

 

Intervals – A Voice Within

 

Intervals_1lo

    The additional information accompanying the promo for the debut album from Canadian band Intervals, declares that the quartet is ‘set to be the most exciting new progressive metal prospects of 2014 with the release of debut album, A Voice Within. As their offering seduces and fascinates it really is impossible to disagree, the nine track adventure a magnetic kaleidoscope of sonic colours, inciting textures, and contagious adventures. With a technical craft to match its progressive enterprise, the self-released A Voice Within, with distribution across Europe by Basick Records, is a maze of diverse and inventive flavours which captivates and absorbs from start to finish.

      The Toronto hailing Intervals was formed in 2011 by guitarist Aaron Marshall and took little time in earning a well-respected and acclaimed presence with their evocative instrumental soundscapes. With a line-up completed by guitarist Lukas Guyader and drummer Anup Sastry (Jeff Loomis / Skyharbor), the band released two well-received EPs, The Space Between and In Time in 2011 and 2012 respectively, as well as playing and touring with the likes of Texas In July, Northlane, Structures, The Kindred, The Color Morale, Misery Signals and more. Last year a new direction was taken by the band, not so much in sound though that was unavoidably affected, but with the joining of vocalist Mike Semesky (formerly of The Haarp Machine). Work began on their first album last September with Jordan Valeriote (Silverstein, Structures, Counterparts) and what has emerged is a riveting triumph taking the band to new scintillating levels and you can only expect greater spotlights.

      The first single taken from the album Ephemeral opens up the endeavour, the track taking no time to immerse the ears in the Intervals.AVoiceWithin.cover.lotechnical skill and inventive breath of band and release. Bass and drums instantly cast a web which entangles and excites the senses whilst the guitars flirt and dance with the imagination. It is a potent start enhanced by the melodic tones of Semesky, his expressive and fluid delivery holding hands with the melody rich flames licking from within the sinew framed opener. Sculpting an aurally scenic venture which intrigues and draws in thoughts with ease, it is only hindsight and not its company which suggests the album’s introduction is merely an appetiser to greater things ahead.

    That suggestion arises straight away with the following Moment Marauder, the song a compelling temptation which enslaves and dances with the passions from its initial melodic caress and technical invention. Winding jazz bred imagination around precise and bewitching temptation, it seduces with almost mischievous glee as the vocals stroke and coaxes the emotions as irresistibly as the complicated breeze of sounds surrounding them. Dazzling bordering on disorientating , the ingenuity and sculpting of the song is a virulent lure but one which never indulges itself, each transfixing technical exploit matched by an openly accessible and infectious hook or sweeping groove aligned to the persistently persuasive vocals.

     Automation and The Self Surrendered struggle just slightly to match the album’s first pinnacle, though both build their own plateaus to rigorously enthuse over. The first offers an almost pop rock swagger within its progressive and technical mesmerism, the melodies and contagious assets framed by muscular rhythms which take no prisoners but equally have a respect leaving ardour rather than wounds. It’s equally smouldering and vivacious bait is swiftly matched by the second of the two, a song which has voraciousness to its opening technical gambit which it then lends to the rest of its potently catchy and provocative body. As all the tracks, the melodic canter never settles into one gait or stance for long, the ever evolving and twisting emprise coming with flared nostrils and irrepressible passion.

    After the brief elegant instrumental Breathe, the song allowing that very action before the next spiral of adventure, The Escape confronts the ears like a frantic acrobat, leaping through and wringing out its sonic narrative upon a mouthwatering canvas of inventive hues and emotion. Its beauty is replaced by the fiery landscape of Atlas Hour, technical poise and passionate energies once again offering a journey of unpredictable and persistently shifting scenic inspiration clad in formidable rhythms aligned to just as forceful riffs.

    Siren Sound confronts the senses next, the song a whirl of almost carnivorous jagged riffs and rhythmic antagonism reined in by the ever impressive vocals and harmonies. As the second song on the album, the track explores and unveils that something extra, something which sparks a furnace in the imagination and passions in comparison to the fierce blazes spawned elsewhere. There is a predatory instinct to the song too which inspires everything from the skill and hunger of the band to the uncompromising sounds themselves, and all engulfed in an irresistible seduction. The track steps up to offer a real challenge to the brilliant Moment Marauder for best song accolades, the pair then tested by the closing title track. Bringing the outstanding album to a tremendous close, the song stomps and teases the passions with a weave of severe rhythms, awe inspiring technical artistry, and simply unbridled adventure.

     Offering a kind of mix of Circles and Beneath the Buried and Me with TesseracT, but something different again, A Voice Within is an exceptional encounter and yes as suggested the evidence of something new and exciting emerging. The evolution to include vocals and new adventures by Intervals might just be the boldest most inspirational move from any band in recent times too.

www.facebook.com/intervalsmusic

http://intervalsmusic.bandcamp.com/

9/10

RingMaster 05/03/2014

  Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Elephantis: State of Mind

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State of Mind the debut EP from UK melodic hardcore band Elephantis is one of those releases which whether you find rapture within it or not it cannot be ignored or simply dismissed. It is a titanic explosion of fervour, expression, and searing melodic enterprise delivered with a brutality and near malice which leaves you shell shocked. The initial encounter left an uncertainty hovering over the six track expanse of the release, unsure just how good or different the EP was to a wave of emerging bands and releases in 2012 from the same genre well. After a deserved prolonged exposure State of Mind emerges as one impressive and even more promising reward for the senses, it is not an easy listen but certainly one of the most enthralling and intriguing.

Hailing from Guildford, the quintet of vocalist Angus Roberton, guitarists Connor Jackson and George Marriott, bassist Joe Oliver, and drummer Olly Harvey, has on the evidence of the EP honed their sound into a squalling and dramatic breath of emotive passion. It is a large sound with a sonic malevolence which strips the senses of security whilst leaving them satisfied and looking forward to much more future. Their influences as stated in their bio include the likes of Misery Signals, Counterparts, and It Prevails and to that you can add spices of the likes of Cancer Bats, Rise Against, and By Any Means to a sinewy mix which leaves you breathless and submerged in an emotional roller coaster of a ride.

      Eastern Skies starts things off with a furnace in its belly and rhythms which leave you trembling. It is a caustic rain of sound and1550607879-1 aggression which leaves the ear raw and smarting. The vocals of Roberton carry nothing less than unbridled heart to match the abrasive intensity and sonic assault. His tones leave finesse outside to add further vicious depth to the track. Within the tempest the guitars leave elegant patterns upon the unruly bruising canvas which counters and contradicts the violence inspiringly whilst making a compelling companion for thoughts. It has to be said that neither this song nor the majority of the others are lingering memories after their departures, though small moments do persist from within each storm, but in their presence make for deeply pleasing encounters.

The following Leo is a dynamic onslaught with its tremendous raptorial breath and shadowed stained heavy rampages; the additional vocals of Odessa vocalist Richard Lardner and the evolving invention to the structure of the track capturing the imagination completely to make the track one of the bigger highlights on the release. As with next up Stronghold, the musicianship on offer is impressive, each member stretching the songs without losing the shape and intent. The second of the two is a track which does not inspire the same reactions and acclaiming thoughts as its predecessors but is still a strong and gratifying moment in ones aural life.

After the good instrumental Ante Meridian another pinnacle is hit with Pale Shades, a track which pushes itself and the songwriting to the limit whilst being controlled and imaginative. Again towering rhythms cage a storm of melodic and inventive endeavour which sits easily alongside the perpetual vocal malevolence and consuming intensity. It is a ravaging tsunami of emotion which rewards as equally as it erodes the strength of the listener, and one very appetizing intrusion.

Ending with the unrelenting anger of the title track, State Of Mind is a strongly promising introduction to a band with one feels has much more invention and uniqueness within their emerging skilled hands. For a debut one can only be impressed and inspired to watch the band closely with a brewing anticipation that Elephantis could be a major force in the near future. As a name your price release the recommendation is check out the band as soon as…

http://elephantis.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Elephantis

RingMaster 31/12/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright