Shadowpath – Rumours of a Coming Dawn

Released earlier this year with a more recent and wider reboot, Rumours of a Coming Dawn is the debut album from Swizz metallers Shadowpath. It is also one of those encounters which certainly makes a strong impression first time around but grows in potency and pleasure as subsequent ventures into its depths reveals the true imagination and craft at its heart.

Originally called Wishpond, Shadowpath weave a multi-flavoured sound drawn from the attributes of power and symphonic to progressive and death metal, taking in inspirations ranging from Opeth, Dark Tranquillity, Everon, J.S. Bach, Katatonia, Lamb of God, Amon Amarth, Tesseract, Dream Theater, and Nightwish amongst many others. The band’s personnel  has changed a fair bit over time but by 2015, the line-up of vocalist Gisselle Rousseau, keyboardist/vocalist/songwriter Philipp Bohny, guitarist Stefano Riario, bassist Amos Zürcher, and drummer Samuel Baumann came together and proceeded to work on this first album across the following year.

Each of the eight tracks within Rumours of a Coming Dawn are individual slices of creative theatre in an overall play, many epic productions and all woven and cast upon the listener with an instinctive passion and imagination. Each also provides a web of layers and textures which unveils new twists and fresh aspects with every listen, a major reason why it grows in impressiveness over attentive time.

The opening introduction of Prelude to Agony is the most straight forward proposal of all within the album, its invitation an atmospheric overture to things to come. Its stormy entrance brings with it the elegant melancholy of the piano and as swiftly the vocal prowess of Rousseau. Her harmonic cries then spark the more portentous air of storm and track with rhythms imposing yet restrained and melodies funereal even in their liveliness as flames of guitar descend. It is an imagination stirring start soon spawning the tempestuous throes of Chaos Equation. Instantly guitars and keys collude in a magnetic tapestry, the grumble of the bass and senses clipping beats lining the heated union with darker almost predacious hues. Rousseau’s symphonic nurtured delivery is a glassy reflection of word and emotion and superbly contrasted by Bohny’s earthy growls; it all uniting for a captivating tempest as potent in its electronic invention as in its extreme metal bred trespass.

The following Seed of Hope makes a calmer entrance, Rousseau and piano aligning their melodic suggestiveness before a rise of dark drama erupts, settling down again to begin repeating the dramatic cycle. As its predecessor, the track has many familiar aspects to it and plenty of unique features which combine for a compelling and increasingly striking proposal. The individual craft of the band is inescapable; Bohny and Riario especially grabbing attention within the song though as it evolves everyone makes a rich impact.

Every track is an adventure never settling into one direction, perpetually unpredictable and as a result fascinating though none more so than the album’s best moment, The Impossible Chain. It easily outshines those around it, instantly stirring the passions with its outstanding start. The dark noir stroll of the bass within the dancing threat of drums is simply delicious, manna to personal tastes and things only escalate in pleasure as keys spread their suggestive wash and guitars spring their devilish almost salacious tempting. Once Bohny’s raw throated tones open with demonic intimidation, the track has an unshakeable grip. Then mellower twists and harmonic beauty comes with skittish rhythms, the climate change as beguiling as the aggressive trespasses are thrilling, as too is Rousseau varying her more expected symphonic metal delivery with more organic and grounded exploits, an excellent move hopefully she will explore further ahead as it equally stands out over the next pair of songs. A scenic break midway in the song is just a tempting breath before it returns to even more adventurous and surprising endeavours, setting a major pinnacle within the release by its conclusion.

Next up Another Inquisitor makes a thick attempt at rivalling its majesty, the song an intricately designed maze of electronic, melodic, and fierce metal dexterity with folk seeded progressiveness. Rousseau again pushes her range and adventure to fine effect whilst musically the song never gives a moment to settle in one flavour or style, again to rich success before Deny me opens like a relaxed bloom into a fiery display of sonic colour and creative magnetism. Though it does not quite match up to the previous two, the song simply enthrals from start to finish.

The album concludes through firstly For a Final Ultimatum, a cauldron of contrasting often battling textures and inescapably infectious enterprise, and finally Beta, a mercurial serenade of self-reflection and melancholic fire which ebbs and flows in volatility as it charms ears and imagination. It is a thunderous finale to the album, even in its calm flights having an instinctive power which lends to its vice like hold on attention.

Shadowpath create music which manages to be chilling and haunting as simultaneously it is warm and inviting, threatening and ravaging. The evidence is all there within Rumours of a Coming Dawn, a release which may not be perfect but has all the seeds to evoke real enjoyment and the anticipation of major things ahead.

Rumours of a Coming Dawn is available now through the band’s Facebook page and website.

http://www.shadowpath.ch    https://www.facebook.com/shadowpath.band    https://twitter.com/shadowpath_band    http://www.instagram.com/shadowpath_band

Pete RingMaster 01/12/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Either Way – Behind The Light

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Hailing from Compiegne in France, Either Way is a melodic death metal proposition which makes a rather appetising introduction to itself with Behind The Light. The band is the solo adventure of Ludovic Ciszewski, a vocalist/multi-instrumentalist who after playing in an array of bands, including Scythians, Osm’oz, Dead N Crazy and currently Monolyth, decided to start his own project to undertake dark melodic explorations inspired by the likes of Before The Dawn and Dark Tranquillity. Behind The Light is the debut release from Ciszewski, with just solo guitar contributions from Mich alongside his own sole endeavours recorded in his home studio.

The album opens with Across the Light, and a beacon of crystalline keys and floating harmonies which just reflects on the imagination like the sun on water. Subsequently dark tones of bass and slow but strong beats join the brewing shadows spread by the guitar, the emerging atmosphere only growing until its brief body evolves into the following Redemption. Swiftly sonic and rhythmic drama is striding purposefully through ears, an early gothic climate initially smothered but reappearing in equal tempting as the raw vocal tones of Ciszewski come forward. Personal tastes took time to come to terms with his certainly accomplished but distinctive and generally samey delivery, a wish for more variation the main lingering request as when he does expand his vocal presence within the album, it brings a new light to songs. Nevertheless it is a raw texture which does work well with the aggressive nature of the song and against the melodic radiance lining the enjoyable start to Behind The Light.

cover_RingMaster Review     Phoenix comes next, it too opening with a classical caress of keys before being joined by more robust and rugged lures spawned by riffs and punchy beats. Though not intimidating, there is immediately a dark air to the song which breeds a rousing and commanding canter lit by the still bewitching keys and the aggressive nature of the guitars and voice. Progressive enterprise mingles with death bred malevolence perfectly, the track like a dangerous but alluring flame just getting more intensive and compelling with every passing minute before making way for the similarly enticing Always Look To The Star and in turn the darkly reflective Evil In Me. The first of the two is a rousing fusion of symphonic and melodic expression with a predatory turbulence guided by the caustic tones of Ciszewski. The track borders on spellbinding, the guitars a riveting persuasion merging numerous styles and ideation and the keys just emotive beauty on the senses. Its successor from a melodically hued and vigorous entrance slips into darker depths of emotion amidst a threatening atmosphere, Ciszewski ‘s voice early on pushes its diversity a little for the first time and to great effect, though it is the guitars which steal the plaudits within the provocative and intensive embrace of ears.

The opening bass welcome is the first irresistible temptation in the outstanding Red Eyes, a track which has a touch of Type O Negative to its emotive outpouring and roaming shadows. Once more keys and guitars entwine for a sonic narrative to spark the imagination and excite ears whilst the rhythms create a commanding skeleton as ripe with contagion as the fiery sounds around them. The best track upon Behind The Light it carries a catchy swagger but loses none of the inciting theatre and dark creative flesh which colours all songs on the album.

The jagged riff built scenery of Faces leads into an equally riveting and highly imaginative landscape of melodic intimacy and at times bruising ferociousness, though this time it is magnetically tempered by the warmer and colourful exploits of keys and for once clean vocals. Generally the impassioned energy and aggressive urgency of tracks overshadows the melancholic beauty to great effect but this time it is the other way round, and followed by a more equal union within the relatively lighter body and funkiness of Trouble In My Mind. There is a noir bred intrigue and sinister resonance to the melodic sky of the song, a haunting beauty which coats its hearty stroll whilst after it, Scarecrow takes its dark edge into stronger ravenous depths for an encounter which takes time to come alive in thoughts but impresses more with every listen.

The release is completed by Black Soul, its first touch a mesmeric piano bred hug full of emotion and elegance. It is accompanied a little further in by a physical narrative of footsteps on crunchy stone before blossoming into another theatre of craft and invention with returning clean vocals as appealing as the ever evocative keys and guitar imagination, not forgetting spirit arousing rhythms.

Creatively and musically, Behind The Light is thorough pleasure, a release continually revealing more with every play, and it is only to our ear’s loss that the vocals do not hit the same spot, something which will not apply to most enjoying our recommendation to treat yourself with the first Either Way album.

Behind The Light is available now from online stores.

Pete RingMaster 17/09/2015

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Countless Skies – Solace

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Following their acclaimed self –titled debut EP of 2014, UK melodic death metallers Countless Skies unveil their new single and an even more potent adventure of sound and songwriting. The track invades ears and psyche with its bold enterprise whilst immersing the senses in a tempest of dark emotion and melodically hued but rapacious atmospheres. Every minute of its handful, makes a compelling proposal and even if personal tastes do not quite get seduced by every aspect of the song, Solace openly delivers on the potential of the band’s last offering whilst uncapping even more anticipation firing promise.

Solace_cover_RingMaster Review   Though Countless Skies exploded on the British music scene last year with their EP, the band goes back to its first guise as Hatespire which began in 2009. Formed by long-time friends Ross King and James Pratt, the pair created a three-track demo of intense and ravenously dark music infused by Scandinavian inspirations, the beginnings to what we have now. Skipping forward to last year, Countless Skies as mentioned poked real attention with their four-track EP, which in turn opened fresh opportunities on the live scene for the band across the UK. They won the Bedfordshire ‘Metal to the Masses’ competition and earned a slot on the New Blood stage at Bloodstock Open Air 2015 in its wake too whilst ahead of their first album scheduled for early 2016, the quartet of vocalist/bassist Phil Romeo and drummer Nathan Robshaw alongside vocalist/guitarist King and guitarist Pratt, uncage Solace and a teaser for their album which certainly gets the job done.

The song opens on an acoustic caress which swiftly has ears and thoughts involved, especially as the elegance of keys joins in with a subsequent heavier and darker wash of imposing tempting. Musically the song continues to seduce with melodic radiance within increasingly volatile air whilst raw, growling vocals add contrasting malevolence and causticity. For whatever reason, the coarse lure of vocals found a less successful reception with the appetite compared to the epically aired and feverishly inventive nature of the sounds but the clean roars midway into the encounter certainly hit the spot upon their emergence. As ever personal tastes get involved in all things whilst allowing sight of what will appeal to numerous others, and all aspects of voice and hostile throat expulsions will certainly find welcome reactions with a great many more for sure.

The fascinating sounds continue to flow and explode through ears, the song varying its scenery and design with constant frequency and ease as guitars and keys bewitch in a just as pungent dramatic union within an uncompromising rhythmic cage. Bands like Dark Tranquillity and Insomnium are suggestions as Solace provides escape for and trespass on body and emotions whilst laying sizeable bait to band and impending album for fans and newcomers alike. Their last EP raised a stir but expect bigger eruptions as Solace grips ears.

The self-released Solace is out now!

RingMaster 24/08/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Stormcast – Frame of Mind

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Whenever dark clouds crowd in on thoughts and emotions there is always a place for an understanding soundtrack, something Cyprus-based atmospheric black metallers Stormcast offer with their impressive debut album, Frame of Mind. The release is a tempest of oppressive intenisty and emotionally ravenous shadows but brought on an epic wave of melodic and atmospheric invention. An increasingly compelling fusion of black and symphonic metal with additional flames of melodic death and gothic expression, the release is a startling and intensive introduction to the Nicosia quintet.

Formed in 2007, Stormcast take their lyrical and atmospheric inspirations from the personal struggles of man and society’s ills. A couple of promos in 2009 and 2012 respectively, opened up a certain amount of attention but it is with the Pitch Black Records Frame of Mind that it is easy to suspect Stormcast will stepping into the widest gaze. The band’s live presence which has seen them play the likes of the MetalDays Festival and share stages with bands such as Rotting Christ, Sabaton, Stratovarius, and Nightstalker, sparked real anticipation for Stormcast’s debut full-length and from being a relative secret expect the band’s name, because of the new release, to be on the broadest expanse of lips as it infests ears and psyche.

The Executioner opens up the physical and mental examination, emerging from a spatial ambience with vocal drones, scything drama clad riffs, and orchestral grandeur. It is a portentous dawning soon realised by the crushing heavy booted feet of rhythms and a ravenous sonic enterprise from the guitars and keys. The song soon settles in to a smaller and more intensive pressure of hungry riffs and combative beats, both carrying the vocal animus of Mike Angastiniotis. His voice is a venomous squall, clinging to ears with every rasping syllable whilst around him the song ebbs and flows with intimate hostility and expansive melodic temptation. It is an instant attention grabber of a track, an inescapable provocateur with nostrils flared and creative wiles in full flow. The golden blaze of horns which lord over the song’s finale make a striking contrast to the pestilential vocals and savage riffery, a moment and conflicting union which in many ways really epitomises the whole of the album.

The potent start is swiftly matched by the dark depths and majesty of Wishful Bliss, its opening elegance soon a predatory stalking of the senses but still wearing a mesmeric cloak of keys from Cover_pbr033Mark McDonald and sonic intrigue from the guitar of George Masouras backed by that of Angastiniotis as his vocals spill further malevolence into the mix. Elements of the track, as across the album, bring thoughts of bands like Dark Tranquillity and The Pete Flesh Deathtrip but only as spice to something distinct to Stormcast, something again shown by New World Order. The track backs up the might of the first two songs with consummate and uncompromising ease. Keys and guitar offer an immediate inviting drama, before passing the fire to a torrent of niggling riffs and intensive swipes from drummer Andrew Laghos, both courted by a prowling and magnetic bassline from Andreas Spyrou and the return of the roaring horns. Whereas the previous track was a maelstrom of dark emotions and riveting enterprise, keys and guitars weaving radiant melodic colour across a brutal rhythmic and riff painted canvas, the third track strides a brighter terrain of still imposing incitement and intensity. Hooks and grooves light up its landscape with enthralling imagination and expressive hues, whilst the bass of Spyrou makes for a carnivorous accomplice to the raw throated narrative of Angastiniotis.

There is also a background hint of clean vocals to the song which are given greater rein in Of Flesh and Stone, an evocative track looking at soldiers at war and families left behind. From a sample of a wife talking, a captivating croon brings the song into potent view. Presumably it is again Angastiniotis singing and it has to be said he is a gripping element with his clean tones swiftly sparking a wish that the band employed this side of his skills even more across the album. He is soon spraying his regular caustic tones though, spite and rage impregnating the turbulent but beauteous tapestry of the epic encounter.

The pair of Withdrawn and In Entropy stirs up air and emotions next with their own individual designs and torment. The first is cored by another addictive bassline around which riffs and beats create a smaller but predacious confrontation, the track almost punkish in its hooks and spiteful riffing. It eventually drifts into a melodic pasture which simply bewitches even as first Angastiniotis and subsequently crippling rhythms add their dark offerings to the outstanding aggressor. Its successor is a radiant wind of sonic and melodic adventure contradicted by the bullish tenacity and contagious strength of rhythms and riffs. Light and dark in a riveting conflict for the listener to immediately immerse in, the song as its predecessor sets another plateau for the increasingly thrilling album.

An opening tangy lure from the guitar sets Immune off in fine and exciting style, that initial tempting continuing to coax ears and imagination as around it the song‘s atmosphere darkens and its climate becomes more imposing. The track never goes into the brutal rage it hints at though, keys providing a poetic elegance as the guitars flame with sonic adventure and the song with a creative revelry. Only Angastiniotis’ scarring tones resist the light, his words a great blackened toxin to the engaging landscape before final track Dysthymia takes over to bring Frame Of Mind to a satisfying close. It again reveals the depth and invention in the songwriting and sound of Stormcast, a blend of smoggy rabidity, unpredictable mouth-watering twists, and emotive melodic endeavour gripping ears and imagination for a potent finale.

It did not take Frame Of Mind long to impress but it is with further plays that its true weight of creativity and grandeur shows itself. With only a wish for a little more diversity in delivery from Angastiniotis a minor thought, Stormcast has pushed themselves towards the strongest spotlight with the album, a must investigation for all extreme melodic metal fans.

Frame of Mind is available via Pitch Black Records now @ http://store.pitchblackrecords.com/STORMCAST-Frame-of-Mind.html#.VIgbA3vzDox

http://www.stormcastband.com/

RingMaster 10/12/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Laika – Somnia

Laika Press Photo

Though it ebbs and flows in the strength of its persuasion at times, there is no escaping that Somnia, the new album from Canadian melodic death metallers Laika is one compelling and thrilling encounter. It may not seemingly be bursting with open originality, the old school breeding of their style driving the creative tempests making up the album, but there is a specific drama and adventurous enterprise belonging to the band flowing through each fresh and seriously captivating persuasion that begs different. It is occasionally not as startling in places as it is elsewhere and maybe should be overall, but Somnia is certainly an impressive and lingering encounter ensuring that the name Laika will not just known for being that of the name of the Russian dog who became one of the first animals to travel to space.

Formed in 2009 with the name inspired by that hound, the then sextet soon drew strong local underground attention with the release of their full-length demo Crafting The Cataclysm the following year, and a live presence which has seen them play with the likes of All Shall Perish, Kataklysm, Necronomicon, Skeletonwitch, Abysmal Dawn, Septic Flesh, and Unleash the Archers over the past few years. The release of the Somnia EP in 2011 was subsequently followed by the band taking two years out to create and work on their debut album. Produced by the Winnipeg quintet, mixed and mastered by Ryan Forsyth, Somnia provides a striking and imaginative new assault for the band, one seeking and easy to see finding a more intensively crowing spotlight.

The release opens with Restless Mind, a brief instrumental which initially strokes the imagination with evocative piano drama against a ticking clock before expanding with a wash of similarly coloured keys and elegant harmonies. It is a laika 1-front cover- smallgentle and intriguing, if not startling, start which leads into the instantly imposing Escalation of Terror. It is a gripping entrance with riffs and rhythms offering hungry energy and intent straight away. Ears and appetite are ignited further as the bait intensifies with a muscular torrent of feverish grooves and vocal causticity crossing the intensive presence of the song. The keys of Steve Tedham bring rich and expressive hues to the great tempestuous intent of the track, their warm beauty a transfixing contrast to the raw scowls of vocalist Jordan Dorge and rhythmic provocation set by drummer Blair Garraway. It is a riveting blend which only grabs greater potency and suasion as ridiculously flavoursome and contagious grooves cast by guitarist Ian Garraway are matched by those throatily laid by the bass of Mike Mason.

It is a sensational incitement to body and emotions, a creative roller coaster which never dips below the exceptional on its way to setting up a hungry anticipation for the rest of the album. The title track is the first to feed that greed, its first touch rugged in riffs and beats but seductive in keys sculpted melodies. That evolves into a more expansive and less hostile landscape, though there is still a busy imposing air to the encounter. Guitars proceed to cast a sonic weave of enterprise and melodic tenacity across the still sinew driven terrain whilst the bass at times almost ventures into a post punk repetition and invention which, along with spicy grooves and vocal savagery, brings fresh character and intrigue to the enthralling track.

Both Fidelity and Caligae A Galea keep the creative and satisfaction levels high, the first stalking ears with a predatory attitude and gait but one fired in sonic invention and seductively inhospitable toxicity. As its predecessor, the track ripples with eclectic textures and imagination soaked ideation, defying expectations and binding eager attention from start to finish. It’s almost exhausting revelry and bold tapestry of sound is swiftly matched by the second of the pair. Opening on a heroic groove, its lure potent caped crusader like coaxing, the song growls and prowls with infectious charm and intimidation. There is a menace to it which Tedham’s craft can only wrap not defuse and Dorge’s grizzled tones easily accentuate. The song is soon providing an addictive canvas of sound which maybe is death metal based but just as pungently entwines a mass of flavoursome tendrils from the likes of noise and psyche rock to post punk and progressive metal. It is a stunning protagonist for ears and incessant lust for the passions.

The album’s pinnacle is followed by the enchanting instrumental Dream of Nothing, a magnetic and reflective slice of melodic beauty. Dark bass emotions lie easily with the sultry charm of keys whilst rhythmically the song walks with a firm and steady but restrained hand. There are also raw guitar crafted flames which intensify the expressive atmosphere and climate of the song, everything uniting for an immersive emprise of sound and imagination. The track also brings respite for the senses though they are soon under demanding pressure as the punk fired assault of The Immortal takes over. For all its ferocity and abrasing presence, it is another song unafraid to spring a web of melodic and expressive beauty in its successful trapping of ears and attention, and though in many ways it takes longer to persuade than elsewhere, it emerges as a simultaneously bitter and warm buffeting to devour with greed.

The final two tracks upon Somnia might not quite match up to their earlier companions, but each leaves no second or note unattended by the listener’s fullest attention. First up Predictions (Tide Bearer) rages and bristles with a merciless graze of sonic bad blood and vocal malevolence, a hostility which wears down the senses with its bruising but still flirts with the occasional melodic seducing. The tracks unrelenting pressure is followed by the exceptional majesty of final track Invaders, a song which sums up the album with its eclectic stock of sounds and spellbinding ideas within a virulent and concussive antipathy. The song is another intoxicating proposition leaving the listener basking in unique temptation and ready to share the glory of album and band.

Somnia just gets stronger and more impressive over time, shown by the fact that listening to it again whilst writing this, there are more reasons to argue against the earlier thought that the album is not as startling throughout as in particular certain moments. That gap closes with each venture, proving this is an album wanting more time than most to really reveal all of its consistent thick rewards and that Laika is a band with the potential to sit beside the ranks of Insomnium, Dark Tranquillity, and Amon Amarth.

Somnia is available now via Filth Regime Records and @ http://laikawpg.bandcamp.com/album/somnia

https://www.facebook.com/LaikaOfficial

RingMaster 23/10/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Axegressor – Last

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Thrash metal with the hostility and ravenous jaws of a rabid horde is the bestial sound which roars away in the hands and skills of Finnish metallers Axegressor, epitomised and taken to its strongest level to date on new album Last. The nine-track fury is an exhausting and thrilling onslaught of passion and thrash rabidity, maybe an encounter so well seeded in its inspirations to lack a strong vein of originality but holding an invention and craft to its contagious ferocity which easily make the band stand apart from the rest and pushes them towards the frontline of the genre.

Formed in 2006, the Turku quartet of vocalist Johnny Nuclear Winter, guitarist Seba Forma, bassist/backing vocalist Aki Paulamäki, and drummer Atte Mäkelä took influences from authentic thrash metal into their own ideas, impacted upon by bands and sounds they had been listening to since their teens. Alongside that flavouring, experiences from ten to fifteen years playing in various metal bands adds to a mix which is impressively accomplished and exciting as evidenced by the new album. Over the early years the band grew a potent and increasingly growing fanbase and reputation in their homeland, helped by shows supporting the likes of Dark Tranquillity, Legion of the Damned, Onslaught, Soilwork, and Municipal Waste. At festivals too the band has only done themselves good whilst previous albums, debut Command and its successor Next in 2007 and 2011 respectively, after first EP Axecution a year into its life, confirmed and accentuated the impact of the emerging Axegressor. The Listenable Records released Last is the band’s greatest moment so far and the expected trigger for the band to much bigger things.

From the opening Freedom Illusion, band and album has attention and thoughts engrossed and eager to explore the voracious cover_lenticements ahead. Heavily striding riffs and sinew swung rhythms engulf ears first within which for the first and definitely not the last time the great savage predatory sound of the bass thrills and bewitches. It is a formidable and commanding start, nothing flash or explosive but everything that is compelling and anthemic for appetite and passions. Once the vicious rasping vocals leap from the shadows a switch is flicked and energy and tenacity is lit up as the track charges with teeth bared and aimed for the jugular of the senses. It is a seamless and captivating move, accompanying group shouts and the sonic invention of the guitars irresistible. The song continues to mix up its gait, at times swamping the body like a swarm of insidious hornets in sonic flight and at other moments prowling around with a bear like intent weighing up its next move.

Lead Justice rips at flesh next, in top gear from the first second scything through air and bone with its rhythms and searing flesh with guitar rapaciousness. As the first, the track is an incessant persuasion badgering and impressing for an early submission with its tremendously gripping bait. A certain drama also walks the edge of the narrative, primarily sculpted by the exciting bass sound and the vocal causticity, the result with all combined a continuation of the striking presence of the album and ignition of an even keener hunger in the listener, a greed soon satisfied by the blistering Mind Castration. Riffs and rhythms as expected, shape the fury of the song from the first moments, carving out their temptation from within the sonic flume marking the first surge of the track. Once more there is an insatiable thirst to the elements of the song which simply nags from start to finish with repetitious and contagious efficiency, a suasion upon which vocals and melodic enterprise wrap their toxic exploits. It is a riveting adventure, a constant aggressor clad in sonic finery and creative distinction from those around, as all songs on the album to be fair.

Things are kept ticking over very nicely by Merciless Reality Check, a track which is nastier and more intensive than those before but lacks some of the spark. Nevertheless it is a pleasing and exciting incitement before the furnace of spite that is 15 unleashes its venom on the senses. Rhythms and riffs collude in a maelstrom of antagonistic and malicious endeavour from the off before aligning into another single minded but unique rampage. Malicious and hypnotic, and wholly infectious, the track is an invention clad predator which surges and twists throughout its tempestuous presence, a roaring proposition and soundscape for which battlefields and nightmares were invented.

Intensive examination is the order of the day once Social Pressure unleashes its punk infused tsunami of incitement and beleaguering enterprise. The track tunnels deep within ears and skin, hooks and grooves as pestilential in their epidemic contagion as they are malevolently seductive. Axegressor have mastered the art of creating repetition fuelled beauty with no finer an example than this monster of a track soon matched in its own unique character by A Fistful Of Ignorance. Delivered in a more predacious crawl than the outright onslaught of the previous track, it massages the senses with heavy handed riffs and that carnivorous bass persuasion to impressive effect before inserting its own transfixing and determined urgency.

The closing pair of Command To Last and Determinator ensure brakes are untouched in their tumultuous and varied deliveries, the first a constantly belligerent gallop with moments of unbridled aggression and the last an uncompromising heavy metal stomp around a thrash cored ferocity which may not match earlier successes but leaves the album in a thrillingly healthy state.

Last is an exhilarating encounter and though as mentioned it arguably uses well wore seeds, there has been few bands producing a sound anywhere near this good and uncaging releases as enjoyable within thrash metal over recent months and longer. A must check out release for all thrash and punk metal fans.

Last is available via Listenable Records in Europe now and in North America on June 24th.

http://www.axegressor.net

9/10

RingMaster 10/06/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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In-Sight : From The Depths

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    From The Depths is the thumping latest album from Italian metallers In-Sight, a release which just grabs the imagination and takes it on an inventive dance of melodic death metal with the emphasis on the former. It is a thrilling release which as our first introduction to the band is one of the biggest rewards of the year for the passions.

The band began with a Swedish death metal sound in 1996 on the impetus of drummer Gianluca ‘Mek’ Melchiori. In-Sight had decent success with their three self released EPs and good acclaim for their live performances which took them around Italy and Switzerland. It was in 2009 though after a lull for the band that Mek reorganised the line-up and brought in vocalists Andrea Pecora and Emanuela Antonelli, guitarist Mattia Stilo, and bassist Cesare  Montagner. This brought on a new spirit and energy which impacted on the more melody driven sounds being created. 2011 saw the band record From The Depths and this year the signing with logic(il)logic Records for its release and also the further addition of second guitarist Riccardo Picchi to the ranks. The album now unleashed on the world sees a band which with still some uniqueness to find to its voice stands apart from most similarly driven artists. This was as mentioned the first time the band has graced our ears and the most pleasurable surprise and experience it has been.

So many things stand out on the album from the superbly crafted and structured songs, the mouth-watering musicianship, and the ftdcolossal mix of beauty, intensity, and wilting power. The other tremendous asset the band and release has is the dual female and male attack of the vocalists, both riveting and the perfect union in their individual extremes. Antonelli has a glorious voice, full of grace and power whilst Pecore growls and bruises the senses with a vicious squall of a tone which ignites the primal instincts inside, though he can vary the assault to offer a good texture to his delivery. It is an excellent mix which with its successful formula sets the band apart in that aspect.

Starting with a brief piano led atmospheric instrumental intro the album opens up its full multi-faceted stance with Mind The Light. It takes no time in offloading hungry riffs and pummelling rhythms for the ear to willingly consume before the golden tones of Antonelli lights the skies. As the aural coarseness of Pecore joins the affair and the guitars conjure grooves to spark emotions into life, the song settles into a classic breath with sinewy provocations. It is nothing particularly ground breaking but wholly compulsive and inspiringly invigorating.

The following tracks just elevate things further; Winding Coil is a sensational rub of sonics and staggering harmonies with especially vocally, the almost duelling presence of the two singers a captivating ingenuity and maybe their finest moment on the album, though they push that thought throughout. The track is an intense and vibrant fire of sound and energy which leaves one drooling in musical lust which is soon satisfied further by Frost Hate and Insight. The first of the two brawls with the ear vocally and sonically whilst Antonelli veins it all with delicious elegance through her caressing tones. The second of the pair is a less forceful encounter though it does not shirk on bone snapping riffs and jolting rhythms to intimidate behind the white hot melodic weaves of imagination and sound. It is just another in a blistering confrontation of high quality senses enthralling songs within From The Depths.

As impressive as Parasite and Rary are they drift away from the levels of the previous songs a little, though it is down to the greatness already unleashed rather than their limitations and the band are soon forging another pinnacle with the insatiable hunger of For the Sake of the Show. The song claws at and gnaws on the ear from start to finish with even the ever fine wonder of the female harmonies and vocals unable to soothe the corrosive impact of the song. It is a triumph which leaves thoughts and senses wasted, a tempest of true pleasure.

Closing on Informulation (2011), a track which demands little but gives plenty, From The Depths is a real gem of the year. In-Sight is a band all fans of the likes of In Flames, Soilwork, Dark Tranquillity, and Scar Symmetry, need to track down. This band deserves wide recognition, no question.

http://www.insightband.net

RingMaster 19/12/2012

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