Morass Of Molasses – The Ties That Bind

Infestations come in many kinds and shapes but few if any are as fascinating and compelling as the sound of UK heavy rockers Morass Of Molasses. It is a proposition which devours the senses whilst ensnaring the imagination, a beast of sonic invasion and melodic seduction which has never been more vital than within the band’s new album, The Ties That Bind.

The Reading hailing trio’s second album is simply a feast of rousing sounds and beguiling imagination; an encounter which reeks of unpredictability and revels in the surprises that offers even as one having a close ear on all to escape the creative cavern of vocalist/ Baritone guitarist Bones Huse since his days as part of the also seriously magnetic Karn8. A whole different proposition though it was on record and before us as we stood grooving to that earlier outfit at a Guildford gig, the seeds to the heavy blues might and weight of the 2013 formed Morass Of Molasses could be heard in many ways being sown.

It is fair to say that the first two tracks unleashed by the band soon after it’s rising up from the thick southern swamps of the UK left the senses caked in dirt and rancor, a trespass so easy to devour and by so many. Soon the band was laying their tar thick sounds, lumbering riffs, and viscous grooves down alongside the likes of Crowbar, Orange Goblin, Ohhms, Vodun, Elephant Tree, Desert Storm, Mammoth Weed and many more, the sonically infesting of the Jaegermeister stage at Bloodstock Festival with their acclaim gathering sound another spark to opportunities for relentless touring and sharing stages with such bands. The release of the So Flows Our Fate EP in 2015 simply sealed the deal though it was soon seriously eclipsed by debut album, These Paths We Tread two years later as the evolution of their sound flourished.

Now that striking release has been simply outshone by its successor, The Ties That Bind a tantalising kaleidoscope of textures and imagination as heavy and ravenous as an avalanche, as melodically syrupy as the outcome of the event which inspired the band’s name, and simply imaginatively mesmeric and creatively unforeseeable. The album rises up through The Darkening, its initial quiet on the side of portentous even as an elegant melody lights its path. Its brief but alluring invitation springs into the following Woe Betide, predacious riffs and swinging rhythms colluding with beacon like grooves. The band’s sound embraces everything from blues, occult, and stoner rock to sludge and doom metal with much more in the flavouring as relished by the second track. With Bones’ distinctive tones roaring, the guitar of Phil Williams weaves, his melodic wires wrapping the track as the rhythms of drummer Raj Puni incite and impose. Continually lighting up fresh shadows and unveiling new levels of enterprise, the song just captivated, its calms sheer seduction and eruptions rousing invasions all crafted and delivered with inescapable almost devious enterprise.

Similarly Death of All invades every welcoming aspect of ears and appetite, its feral rock ‘n’ roll  pouncing on the listener straight away as blues bred enticement and fiery funk grooves leads to infectious alternative rock bordering detours. Like a salacious fusion of Red Hot Chili Peppers, Iggy Pop, and Black Tusk, the track is superb but mistake us not all uniquely Morass Of Molasses.

The fires within the song are white hot smouldering in next up Estranger, the song a seductress expressing intimate thoughts as the album continues to explore themes of human connection, delving “into the deep-rooted interactions we share with each other and ourselves” via the Dark Forest motif which shapes every spark of album and songs. Every groove within the track swerves around with voluptuous temptation, Huse’s vocals backed by those of Puni, carrying a gentle swing whilst entangled in the enthralling threads woven by Williams’ guitar. As its predecessors, the song just gripped ears and imagination, new depths and invention oozing from every passing minute.

The pastoral calms of Legend Of The Five Sons beguile just as readily next, the radiant serenade keenly bewitching across its melodic beauty. Featuring the graceful tones of Sian Greenaway of doom rockers Alunah and the flute prowess of Matt Ainsworth, the song caressed the senses like a lover before As Leaves Fall builds on its folkish hues with shamanic rhythms and melodic intimation; darker shadows brewing in its own particular enchantment and exploding in the ravenous jaws of Persona Non Grata. It is a pyre of roasted grooves and manipulative rhythms scalded further by caustic riffs and vocal scowling. Again it proved so easy to greedily devour and with increasing hunger, the almost crust punk whiff which occasionally arises and especially its cosmopolitan hues delicious spicing.

The album is completed by In Our Sacred Skin and The Deepest Roots, the first an earthy assault of sound as unapologetically caustic as it is hungrily tempting which only evolves with every passing note before returning to its cycles but twisting them around with fresh adventure so expectations can never feed and the imagination can be greedy; traits the whole of The Ties That Bind embraces. The final track sees Huse and Greenaway dueting, a spellbinding union which just lights up the air as William’s guitar strolls beside them; a darker climate looming in all the while to add to the captivation and drama.

It is a glorious end to quite simply the finest moment of Morass Of Molasses by far even given the might of those before it. The band is one of the UK’s truly unique and striking propositions and through the sensational The Ties That Bind they should get the recognition, attention, and success they both deserve.

The Ties That Bind is out now via Wasted State Records; available @ https://morassofmolasses.bandcamp.com/

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Pete RingMaster 04/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Left For Red – Human Complex

Approaching their ten year anniversary on the UK metal scene, Left For Red are poised to uncage their new album, Human Complex. Offering ten voraciously toned, imaginatively woven tracks, it is a record which highlights all the reasons why the Midlanders have earned their strong reputation and support to date and many more why the next decade could be even more exciting for them and definitely for us.

Since emerging in 2009, the Stourbridge quintet has lured acclaim for early releases which only grew eagerly richer for their 2015 unleashed debut album, All Things Known and Buried. It is success echoed in a live presence which has equally brought thick praise and an increased following, the band sharing stages with the likes of Chimaira, Crowbar, Beholder, and Breed 77 amongst many more as well as make highly successful appearances at numerous festivals such as Bloodstock, Hammerfest, and Mammothfest. It is now very easy to expect and assume that Human Complex will bring even greater attention such its potent character, bold sound, and rousing snarl.

Recorded with Tom Gittins of Monochrome Productions, Human Complex explores the human psyche, focusing on “why people can be so arrogant and careless with their actions, and the effects they have on themselves and others.” It opens up with Dancing With Misery, a suggestive crawl of provocative sound and dark intimation. It is a shadow draped serenade, a caliginous enveloping of ears and imagination with the potent tones of vocalist LC Decoy bringing a physical head to its atmospheric Deftones hued pea-souper of a haze.

It is a start which had attention and thought deeply enthralled, the body soon as tightly engaged as Switchblade Romance followed. With its initial wiry groove enough alone to entice further eager scrutiny, the guitars of Aaron Foy and Philip Smith entangled and enthralled with ease, the senses lashing swings of drummer Rob Hadley pining down an already keen appetite as the track rises to its striking feet. Like a blend of Fear Factory and Fuckshovel, the song quickly burrowed into the psyche, providing a lingering creative toxicity ensuring many swift returns even in the face of the inescapable lures of its successor Slaves To Causality. Less grievous in its breath but just as virulent in its grooving, the third track soon placed a firm hold on attentiveness, the tantalising voice and touch of Daniel Carter’s brooding but infectious bass to the fore. Again LC enticed as inescapably as the resourceful sounds around him, the track maybe not as unique as the previous pair but equally as magnetic.

The outstanding Leech is next up and instantly throws a web of rapacious grooves and contagious rhythms around ears, its contagion invigorating and body increasingly adventurous to give The Circus which follows, a ready-made platform to tempt with its classic metal lined, groove metal fuelled show. With a potent alternative metal swing as eagerly involved in its ever evolving roar, the track stands side by side with its predecessor as one of the peaks of Human Complex before Hand Of God more than ably backs them up with its own sinuous, emotionally torturous uproar. Serpentine in nature, fractious in breath, it too is a multi-flavoured metal trespass with grooves as melodically alluring as its rhythms and irritability are invasive.

The Storm brews next, its relatively calm flesh and emotive air carrying a volatility which never ignites but brings a riveting threat and discord to the track’s captivating croon while Journey Within straight after had the body bouncing and spirit swinging through its instinctively and manipulatively catchy ingredients and enterprise. Again the band’s smart fusion of flavours to a groove metal seeded breeding makes for a greedily devoured proposition, one even more hungrily devoured within the just as individual Tame The Tides. The track is a ravening predator of a song but carrying just as delicious melodic enterprise as numerous textures unite to match the mix of metal spices; both tracks further major highlights within the album.

Human Complex closes with the evocative balladry of Sunrise Bring Serenity, a strongly engaging temptation which blossoms and fascinates with each passing moment of time and imagination. With hope and optimism lining it’s still tempestuously suggestive climate, the track brings the album to a fine conclusion.

As much as we enjoyed and were impressed with previous releases and especially the band’s first album, Left For Red has cast their finest moment yet through Human Complex, a release which could and should set the band down in the biggest spotlights.

Human Complex is released April 6th

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Pete RingMaster

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hollow Leg – Murder EP

hollow-leg_RingMasterReview

With a new drummer on board, John Stewart (Bloodlet/Caribou King) replacing departed founding member Tim Creter, Florida doomsters Hollow Leg unveil a their two track trespass this March. An individual grumbling fusion of the doom/sludge fuelled metal the band has already been the subject of acclaim for, the Murder EP reveals a new fresh roar and growth in that proposition and, as suggested by its press release, emerges “the band’s strongest material to date”.

murder-final-cover_RingMasterReviewMixed by Sanford Parker and mastered by Collin Jordan, Hollow Leg starts its proposal with Raven. The initial volley of firm beats almost stalks the listener as the song makes its first move. A momentary breath then follows, opening the way for dirty riffs and scowling vocals to lay their hand on the senses as rhythms bring their heavily sinew bound incitement to bear on the blues scented, sludge fuelled consumption of ears. Shifting through the gears back and forth in attack, the track quickly becomes a grumbling treat; essences of the likes of Eyehategod, Weedeater, and Crowbar making tempting hues in the band’s provocative web of sound and texture.

The following title track is just as generously flavoured but veering towards the more stoner-esque side of their sludge/ doom collusion. Tangy grooves are swiftly entwining rapacious rhythms and eager ears, riffs a bed of controlled antagonism beneath them as vocals carry a more open snarl to their character. Though generally a more energetic proposal, the song does slip into moments of  lumbering doom threat only increasing its intensity and bait as melodies gather in the shadows waiting to provocatively dance on a subsequent passage of lighter flirtation before things return to the predatory incitement it all began on.

Both tracks bring a fresh wind to an already in place appetite for Hollow Leg and their compelling sound found through debut album Instinct a fair while back, and a keener anticipation for what is to follow.

The Murder EP is released March 3rd through Argonauta Records on all digital formats with a physical release to follow later in the year.

 

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Pete RingMaster 03/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

XII Boar – Beyond The Valley of The Triclops

zz6t_xiiboarband_1_RingMasterReview

Last year metallers XII Boar made a compelling statement that British heavyweight rock ‘n’ roll was in safe and eager hands with debut album Pitworthy. It was a slab of dirty, primal stomping announcing the arrival of the Aldershot hailing trio on the frontline of UK metal. Hindsight though, and the release of its successor, shows that the impressive encounter was just an appetiser for a bigger thunderous roar and charge of creative mischief, for Beyond The Valley of The Triclops.

Formed in 2010, XII Boar caught the attention of a great many with first release, the Split Tongue, Cloven Hoof EP. Unleashed in 2012, it thrust the band’s thumping invasive sound into broader attention to back up a growing live reputation. Since then, the threesome of guitarist/vocalist Tommy Hardrocks, bassist Adam Thomas, and drummer Dave Wilbraham have shared stages with the likes of Corrosion of Conformity, Crowbar, ASG, and Karma To Burn, made praise luring appearances at Bloodstock, Desert Fest, and Hard Rock Hell, and signed a film licensing deal with Troma Films editor Dylan Greenberg. In the mix was the release of the critically acclaimed Pitworthy, it all leading to the band’s finest moment to date, Beyond The Valley of The Triclops.

Recorded with producer Chris Fielding (Conan, Electric Wizard, Winterfylleth) at Skyhammer Studio, the new album sees the band’s Motorhead, Black Sabbath, High on Fire inspired blend of stoner, doom, blues, and southern metal find a new devil in its heart and revelry. There is a mischievous grin on its creative face, a fresh inventive debauchery which gives Beyond The Valley of The Triclops a diversity and adventure not heard in the already imaginative XII Boar sound before. The album opens with Prologue, a brief slice of rhythmic voodoo setting the feral landscape the album and first track proper, Beyond The Valley commands. From a delicious dirty bass groove with guitar flames in the air, the track strolls through ears with the infectious swing of winy grooves surrounding jabbing beats. The raw and grizzled tones of Hardrocks enjoyably growl, challenging as the track rouses ears and an already keen appetite for the band’s sound. It is an easy invitation for newcomers too, one already showing a new maturity and confidence in songwriting and sound whilst rousing the spirit in the individual XII Boar way.

zz6t_xiiboarbeyondthevalleyofthetriclops_1_RingMasterReviewThe Hustle leaps at the listener immediately its predecessor departs, fiery riffs and the sultry shimmer of harmonica coaxing attention as the song shows itself an old school meets stoner stomp with plenty of punk rock attitude and blues rock spicing. It is an epidemic of infectiousness as sturdy and intrusive as it is virulent and matched in success by the bluesy rock ‘n’ roll of Strange Kinda Lonesome. It too is a canter which whips up body and spirit, involving the listener with swift ease as Lemmy and co like influences make their presence known not for the first or last time in the XII Boar sound. There is a touch of Dr Feelgood to the song too, a dose of heavyweight R&B adding its flavouring even when the song explodes in a tirade of heavy rocking half way.

There is no time for exhaustion already resulting from listening to the album to recover as the outstanding El Mucho Grande flirts and roars on the senses straight after, the song a tapestry of twisting grooves and catchy hooks woven with fun and inventive relish as full of variety as the vocals.

A moment to catch breath is allowed as the narrator of the album is given thirty seconds to give his Welcome To Your Doom warning before Penetrator whips up its energies and grouchy aggression in a superb corruption of a track again openly wearing its Motorhead cape as it has body and vocal chords in league with its own in no time. There are no real surprises in a song which feels so good to throw body and soul into, that adventure given to the likes of the imposingly heavy Abyssal Lord with its spidery grooves and cantankerous nature and the country twanged Black and Blues to exploit. The first of the pair also seamlessly slips into some magnetic and sultry jazz funk shuffling while its successor is a smouldering fire of blues and country rock crooning given a weight and intensity which rumbles on the senses. Both tracks have an unpredictability and volatility which alone seduces attention and real enjoyment, an enterprise just as rampant within the predacious rock ‘n roll of Jupiter Aligns if not with the same strength of zeal.

Album highlights continue to arise as it nears its end, Beggars Roost one such potent proposal with its dark and imposing presence with the excellent Triclops concluding the release with a rhythmically gripping and sonically muggy stalking of the senses. The fact that neither track is arguably the strongest and most explosive things on the album shows the might and quality of Beyond The Valley of The Triclops as a whole.

You always hope to say that the latest release from a band is their finest moment yet and with XII Boar it has been a theme realised almost song by song as they seize UK heavyweight rock ‘n’ roll in their big salacious hands.

Beyond The Valley of The Triclops is out now @ http://xiiboar.bandcamp.com/

http://www.xiiboar.com/   https://www.facebook.com/xiiboar   https://twitter.com/xiiboar

Pete RingMaster 29/09/2016

The Mountain Man – Bloodlust EP

TMM_RingMasterReview

Like brawling with a bear, the Bloodlust EP leaves concussive destruction and raw mayhem in its wake. It relentlessly ravages and crushes with five tracks of metal ferocity but like an unbridled storm it also leaves the senses energised and hungry for more. The release is the debut assault from Canadian band The Mountain Man; an introduction to a new primal force with potential swinging from every mighty rhythmic blow and sonic tirade.

Hailing from Vancouver,  The Mountain Man draws on inspirations from the likes of The Black Dahlia Murder, Crowbar, Gojira, Lamb of God, and Black Sabbath for their ravenous sound. They are essences easily heard within the band’s first encounter but no more so than the band’s own distinctive and carnivorous imagination and raging intensity. Since forming, the band has earned a potent reputation for a live presence which has seen them play with the likes of 88 Mile Trip, Nylithia, La Chinga, Slaughterhauser, Warrborn, Ninjaspy, Abriosis, Unbeheld, and Dead Asylum. Now it is the Matt Roach produced, Troy Glessner mastered Bloodlust EP ready to spark not only fresh homeland attention but easy to suspect far wider bred spotlights.

Virtually living up to its name from its first breath, the EP opens with the venomous Backhand of God. Its initial touch is a single captivating melody with just a hint of a rapacious edge to it. That background hunger is soon realised as the evocative groove leads into a blistering haze of raw and imposing intensity led by the bestial growl of vocalist Parker.  By now the track is prowling ears, crawling over the senses with a Lamb Of God like predation wrapped in equally intimidating tendrils of guitar enterprise cast by Tyson Tambellini and Jordan Orr. Increasingly invasive and pleasing, the track makes a formidable, attention grabbing start to Bloodlust, though it is quickly eclipsed by the EP’s title track.

Album cover_RingMasterReviewA web of primal rhythms and corrosively roaming grooves instantly ensnare ears  as Parker extends his multi-faceted vocal fury and attack to again direct the tempest. It is an exhilarating and  uncompromising tempest driven by the gloriously thunderous and dynamic beats of Ryan McCreedy, whose hellacious craft is matched in merciless kind by the psyche grinding grooves of bassist Tevyn Pacey. The track is glorious, a torrent of riffs and creative savagery bound in acute melodic enterprise which simply captures the imagination as much as the barbarousness of the track has the body gripped.

Open Graves steps forward next; it also opening with a trespass of a groove impossible to defend against. The song is a dirtier, more muggy proposal than its predecessor but still leaves its all-consuming enveloping of the senses open to ear grabbing imagination and the ever evolving hostility of the rhythms. As the song before, it is maybe hard to say that the track offer s big moments of originality yet every minute provides a collision of fresh violence and creative endeavour which leaves most extreme metal onslaughts heard so far this year, looking a touch pale and uninspired.

Showing greater diversity in their songwriting and ideation, the band opens The Great Decay with a melodic seducing which is as elegant as it is slightly melancholic and certainly laced in devilish intrigue which builds and intensifies into a maelstrom of aggravated emotions and volatile persuasion. There is restraint and unbridled animosity in the song, creative adventure and pure sonic rancor, and numerous other contrasting textures which all unite in an impressive, almost swamp like bellow of provocative suggestiveness. Ending with a brutal predatory charge employing every strain of metal viciousness possible, the track makes way for the closing ferociousness of Ghost.

It too takes to stalking the listener first, but with open barbarism in every aspect of its doom scented and blackened pestilential crawl. Breaking out stoner-esque grooves, if swung by an executioner, the band continues to prove that familiar hues does not mean predictability; the track continuing to weave recognisable yet boldly fresh textures into one mean spirited and fiercely galvanic incitement.

It did not take long to get a lusty appetite for Bloodlust, one which has only increased and got greedier with every outing. We are sure to not be alone in embracing the roar of The Mountain Man, and the recognition that things can only get bigger, better, and more brutal with the band over time. Bring it on!

The self-released Bloodlust EP is out March 25th @ http://mountainmanmetal.bandcamp.com/

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Pete RingMaster 23/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Church of Misery – And Then There Were None

COM-promo_RingMasterReview

As much as anticipation, there was plenty of extra intrigue involved leading to the release of And Then There Were None, the new album from Church of Misery. The sixth full-length from the Japan bred band, it is also the first since bassist and mastermind Tatsu Mikami was forced to assemble a new line-up a year after the unleashing of the 2013 album, Thy Kingdom Scum. It was an obstacle which has seemingly made little difference to the band as in And Then There Were None they have come up with one ferociously compelling provocation.

Another reason for that intrigue was that Mikami has linked up with musicians outside of his homeland for the first time; enlisting Blood Farmers guitarist Dave Szulkin, Earthride drummer Eric Little (ex-Internal Void) and Repulsion frontman (and former Cathedral bassist) Scott Carlson on vocals. It is easy to assume this was a challenge in itself in the creation of the album due to distances between members and indeed the bassist when talking about the album admitted, “It was a challenge because there was not much time to make this record—only two weeks,” going on to add, “One week for rehearsals and then one week to record all materials.” With Carlson providing vocals for an album for the first time in almost 30 years, it seems like it was a project pushing each member to their creative edge; an essence which has gone so me way to giving an extra spark and bite to the “blood-soaked trip through homicidal hell.”

Fuelled by the tales and bloody mayhem of killers both infamous and obscure, And Then There Were None opens up with The Hell Benders. Emerging from a viscerally sanguineous opening, funk spiced melodies quickly seduce the imagination as nagging rhythms rap the senses. It is a mellow and tantalising entrance which is soon spilling suggestively sultry grooves and incisive beats as Carlson’s growling delivery mixes it with the sweltering climate of doom/sludge bred heavy rock ‘n’ roll. The intoxicating invention of the guitars is invasive yet at times provides a mesmeric lure for a perpetually captivating frame to the barbarous lyrics with the bass of Mikami bridging the two with its heavily alluring tone and rapacious shadowing of voice and sonic enterprise.

COM-and_then_there_were_FRONT_RingMasterReviewThe gripping start is reinforced by the almost carnal resourcefulness and snarling nature of Make Them Die Slowly. Riffs immediately provide a tasty intrusion, seeming to relish their antagonistic presence within a web of sinister yet seductive grooves. With vocals across the band stalking the imagination too, the track reveals a punk infused attitude to its Crowbar meets High on Fire meets Earthride like trespass.

Doctor Death prowls ears and imagination next, inspiration coming from British killer Harold Shipman. As thoughts are reminded and provoked, guitars again spread a lattice of juicily enticing grooves aligned to forceful rhythms as Carlson shares the insidious deeds. Enthralling and increasingly irresistible, the sonically humid track makes way for the funkier revelry of River Demon, where bass and drums go on a rampage of addictive and incendiary rhythms. A slab of volatile and bruising groove bound devilment which enslaves appetite and energies from start to finish, the track is a vampiric treat leaving the body and senses exhausted with its blues soaked punk ‘n’ roll.

Through the muggier sonic climate of Confessions Of An Embittered Soul and southern soaked Suicide Journey, the album reveals more varied hues to colour its melodically toxic and addictive body. The first of the two has the imagination wound around its creeping grooves, they in turn winding around the senses as Carlson shares the song’s hellacious contents. In contrast, its brief successor is a warmer if sinister wash of mellow sound and intensity but a match in igniting the imagination and pushing it to explore its own interpretative adventure.

Bringing the album to a close is Murderfreak Blues, a song which crushes the senses yet within a breath or two becomes a stalking, seducing, and ravishing provocation of their weaknesses as, unsurprisingly, psyche twisting grooves and demanding rhythms leave, through murderous traits, their own lingering and welcome marks.

It is a mighty end to an album which grows with every listen, managing to seem even more antagonistic each time as it impresses in sound and craft. And Then There Were None is a blood encrusted groove fest and very easy to recommend.

And Then There Were None is out now via Rise Above Records @ http://www.riseaboverecords.com/shop/

http://www.churchofmisery.net/   https://www.facebook.com/churchofmiserydoom/

Pete RingMaster 07/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Bastard Sons – Smoke

The Bastard Sons _RingMaster Review

There is no escaping the buzz which has powerfully brewed around The Bastard Sons since emerging in 2011 and especially over the past couple of years, and no evading the reason why, once losing yourself in the riotous depths of the band’s debut album Smoke. It is a bulging sack of pure rock ‘n’ roll cast in a maelstrom of flavours showing exactly why the broad term rock ‘n’ roll is the best way to describe the band’s tenacious sounds. At times it is southern rock led, in other moments hardcore driven, and very often metal sparked; to be honest it is constantly all of those and far more, a beast of a stomp sure to incite the passions of fans to everyone from Down to Cancer Bats, Ghost of a Thousand to Black Tusk, Bloodsimple to Hellyeah, and Stone Temple Pilots to Stone Sour.

Around and since the release of their second EP Roads in the March of 2014, the British quintet has been a blur of activity drawing increasing success at the same time. A US tour with Throw The Goat pushed the band’s growing reputation stateside whilst praised appearances at Hammerfest VI and Bloodstock, a tour supporting hardcore punks Snot, and shows alongside ’68, the new project of Josh Scogin from The Chariot, and also Cavorts amongst many others has taken care of the appetites of British fans and media. Earlier this year the York hailing five-piece dropped a potent and quickly devoured teaser for Smoke in the shape of the single Release The Hounds, a dynamic hint realised and taken to greater plateaus by the album itself.

The Bastard starts things off, southern fried chords the initial lure, though for barely a squeeze of seconds as quickly the band with sinew loaded riffs and rhythms bursting set up a riotous stomp of energy and sound. Vocals, as the music, come in varied styles, hardcore and cleaner rock ‘n’ roll tones colluding in a tempestuous incitement with anthem tattooed to its gripping walls. There is a touch of Pantera, Motorhead, and Every Time I Die to the storm, but as repeated song by song, it is just flavouring honed into something unique to The Bastard Sons.

TheBastardSonsSmokeFrontCover_RingMaster Review  The earlier single comes next, and quickly Release The Hounds shows why it had so many feisty for the album, its opening grooves and vocal scowling within a rugged landscape enough to get ears smiling and appetite drooling alone. The heart of the track is unfussy rock ‘n’ roll, a balls to the wall roar coloured and constantly reshaped by flirtatious sonic enterprise and sudden compelling twists of unpredictability, musically and vocally. It is the seed design to all tracks within Smoke in many ways, but persistently twisted and taken down new and individual avenues as swiftly shown by Sobre La Muer… and before it A Lie Is A Lie. The third track rages and croons with incendiary textures and addiction forming grooves whilst its successor casts a sultry air more in Seether/Shinedown territory than anything else, yet with a predatory dark bassline and a steely touch to the guitars, it carries a constant intimidation which strongly expels its fury from time to time. Nevertheless it and the previous song are inescapable anthemic traps; the lure somewhere between Them County Bastardz and The BossHoss, and fiercely contagious.

Bottom Of The Ladder growls and sonically grizzles with scuzzy magnetism next, guitars and vocals a dirty incitement stirring up ears and soul whilst the group calls work, along with the thumping rhythms, on the body and primal instincts. As anthemic in intensity and roar as it is, the track also unleashes an agitated and gripping web of aggressive twists and belligerence toned creativity, its presence ready to brawl at the drop of a hook or scything beat.

The southern drawl of guitars brings I’m Only A Call Away alive next, the song once standing tall writhing like a barroom temptress with inescapable grooves amidst a volatile fistfight of rhythms and the ever fiery and impressive mesh of vocals. As already shown by their live history, The Bastard Sons has a sound which works with, and appeals to, a vast expanse of rock and metal styles, that diversity in no finer and pungent shape than on this fascinating riot.

Through the brief and hellacious, as well as uncompromisingly emotive landscape of the fiercely angry U.S Against Them and the classic metal lined rock ‘n’ roll of Listen Here, band and album keep the thrilling storm blazing whilst Cardboard Walls saunters in on a rhythmic confrontation bound in more of the sludgy southern wrapping the band breeds so invitingly. A suggestive hint of Crowbar appears at times within the fire of sizzling grooves and snarling riffing, but as you may assume the track, whilst being one of the more restrained adventures on the album, it simply layers more flavours and varied textures into one enthralling mix.

Like a sandstorm, vocals shower and scar Scene(ic) Root(s) next to thick success, but equally they slip into cleaner gaits with ease and power to match the similarly volcanic and pleasingly exacting sounds. The track burns on the senses, simultaneously exciting and bruising before Stay True spreads its warmer balm. Featuring Glamour Of The Kill vocalist Davey Richmond, the track is a shadow brewed serenade as atmospherically and vocally haunting as it is emotionally and physically mercurial, and quite mesmeric.

Smoke finishes with the equally potent but far more capricious and intrusive Exist-Distance, a track which kind of sums up band and album with its constant weaving of different flavours and creative twists within a perfectly coherently cultured body, and another song which stands individual in the cast list of easy to recognise Bastard Sons songs.

We gave a list of bands at the start which sort of gives a hint at who might find thick pleasure from exploring one of the year’s real treats so far. To simplify it though, if raw and passionate, imaginative and ravenous rock ‘n’ roll hits the spot than Smoke is a must.

Smoke’ is available from 7th August 2015 via Kaiju Records @ https://thebastardsons.bandcamp.com/

http://www.thebastardsons.co.uk/    https://www.facebook.com/thebastardsonsuk

RingMaster 05/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright