Dead Retinas – Divine EP

Though they made a pretty instant splash in the pool of attention and praise with their debut, the Dead Retinas vs. The World EP back in 2012, it is fair to say that the UK band has simply grown in strength, sound, and in luring praise ever since. Each subsequent release from that potent first has provided a rousing proposition with the Manchester band’s most striking yet coming in the shape of their new creative offensive, the Divine EP.

Without doubt there has been a fresh attack and imagination in the band’s writing and hardcore/punk bred sound with every release but now real maturity and a deviously manipulative essence has emerged. It was intriguingly hinted at within the 2017 released Coup De Grâce and now has become an uncompromisingly stirring force within its successor, Divine. An unscrupulous fusion of hardcore and noise punk, the new Dead Retinas offering provides three tracks which stalk the senses and bait the spirit whilst revelling in that new breath of adventure in the band’s sound. The EP is also the first release with the band’s new line-up in full antagonistic roar, a creative holler seeing Dead Retinas stalking the reputation of punk’s heavyweights.

The Laurie Morbey produced Divine opens up with Gold in Monochrome and immediately descends on the senses and nerves with a predatory rhythmically prowling groove. The vocals of CJ Smith are just as swift, bawling almost brawling in ears with his usual potent presence. The guitar of Jack Thompson springs his scything lures and nagging hooks soon after as the swinging beats of Chris Heath batter already beleaguered but devouring senses. With the bass of Chris Gaduzo continuing its almost guttural tempting, the track writhes and twists as it rages; raw flirtation and invasive invention fuelling it’s unpredictable and seriously enjoyable enterprise.

The following You Go Glen Coco is just as compelling and insatiable in its antics. It too moves with the lust of a whirling dervish but with a composure which just accentuates its carnivorous intent. Again the band casts grooves which easily and quickly got under the skin, rhythms voracious with their own infectious animosity and all combined creating an increasingly expanding and imaginative infestation of sound and dissension.

By no means left behind in creative prowess, final song An Exercise in Bad Taste erupts in ears with immediate hostility, Smith again leading the trespass as rhythms malevolently dance and the sonic toxicity of Thompson’s strings blazes. Once more imagination soaked unpredictability infests the track, its movements often bordering on the spasmodic but with a fluidity which makes for an unrelenting molestation and pleasure.

As seems to be the trend with Dead Retinas releases, Divine reveals new growth in their sound and creative adventure but one which easily overshadows anything before it and so much so that the band might struggle to eclipse it next time but then again this is Dead Retinas…

The Divine EP is out November 30th, available @ https://deadretinas.bandcamp.com/album/divine as well as Spotify, Apple Music etc.

https://www.facebook.com/DeadRetinas/   https://twitter.com/DeadRetinas

Pete RingMaster 30/11/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dead Retinas : Gang Of Wolves EP

Photos by Kate Hatfield

Photos by Kate Hatfield

Having impressed with their previous pair of EPs, UK hardcore punks Dead Retinas return with their third offering and a new vocalist. The departure of previous singer Sam Hendo left some questions as to how they would follow his strong presence but the Gang Of Wolves EP shows it was with ease as new frontman Will Walkden slaps down his own identity and brawl upon songs. There is also a seeming shift in sound and band, an emerging maturity and you could almost say seriousness to their endeavours now which initially stops you in your tracks to consider the move and then finds you basking in its overall success.

Dead Retinas has over past couple of years stood tall as one of the most promising and best emerging punk bands in the UK, their riotous live performances, which has seen them alongside bands such as Four Short Of A Miracle, Landmarks, Falter, The City Divided, Zsilent Z and many more, and their pair of previous EPs, Dead Retinas vs. The World and Dawn Of The Dead Retinas. The new release only confirms the earlier stance of the band and thoughts left over them whilst still suggesting there is much more to come from the Manchester four-piece, especially with as mentioned this more business-like feel to their music. Gang Of Wolves contains a trio of songs taken from the earlier releases now re-recorded as well as three new ones and it is the older tracks which show the more ‘sober’ approach to a still rebellious middle fingered devilry.

The release opens with Snow, a track which is staring at the ear from its first rhythmic beckoning through to the creative casting of sonica0144321436_2 mist by the guitar of Jack Thompson and the prowling throat growling bass of CJ. It is a considered start and caress of the senses which is arguably new for the band and continues even as the angst driven squalls of Walkden score and scar the walls of the song. Expelling a fire bred intensity as it moves deeper into its compelling heart, the song brings a vehement climax to its recipient, evocative and fearsome but wholly riveting. There is a post hardcore breath to the track which also makes a fresh flame to challenge expectations over the band and helps makes a tremendous burn of an introduction to start things off.

The following Crowns On Hounds entwines tightly around the body next, metallic sonic flames of guitar in league with a gruff bass swagger that is instantly enticing within the ever crisp and challenging rhythms of drummer Lee O’Connor. Venturing in to Cancer Bats/Pinhead Gunpowder territory with a snarl and vicious sonic lancing of the senses to the fore, the track is a deliciously abrasive and distrustful beast of a song where the vocals of Walkden, backed as impressively by the additional badgering of Thompson and CJ, graze the synapses as potently and deeply as the sonic scything elsewhere.

The next three tracks are the revisited songs starting with Just Because You Drink Jack Daniels. Doesn’t Mean You’re Rock n Roll. A mighty mix of punk, hardcore, and noise, the track chews the ear with discourteous riffs and a rapacious bassline urged on by the still abusive rhythms of O’Connor. The guitar draws on a blues whiff to ignite thoughts further whilst CJ finds a bestial predation to his notes that sets the senses back on their heels whilst only having a hunger for more. Veined by an irresistible Dead Kennedys like groove with more hooks than a loan shark, the track twists the passions around its intrusive little finger to leave only greed for more in its wake. The track is as impressive as first time around but with a rein on the chaotic approach which marked its presence on Dawn Of The Dead, takes on a more potent presence, something which applies to the other pair of recharged songs. It has to be said though there is still a part of the heart that misses the no idea if the band would explode into bedlam unpredictably that endeared them previously.

Both LSD (Listen Smile Disagree) and Pure Gold exhaust the passions with their insatiable provocations and again the pair build on impressive first appearances to show an evolution in attitude, craft, and antagonism, as well as proving that Walkden is a worthy successor to Hendo. The first is a mix of predatory urgency and flesh peeling riffs stalked by the always hungry bass, the gang shouts an anthemic air punching draw which softens the senses before the finale of brain melting acidic sonics take their spiteful and thrilling place. Its successor is prime punk rock, a nostalgic air filtering through its hardcore badgering. Gallows meets Liferuiner, the song is a thrilling blaze of jagged riffs and concussively jabbing rhythms ridden by pure vocal hostility.

The closing title track is a thoughtful and thought provoking slice of caustic temptation which like the opener suggests the direction the band is moving towards. Still steeped in hardcore bitterness and punk gall there is a melodic hue to the rancor that sees the band expanding their sights and passions if still within their aural loathing.

Gang Of Wolves is a fine intriguing and exciting release, answering and suggesting more questions for the future. Like an end of a chapter whilst opening up a new paragraph for the band The EP leaves only eagerness to hear and feel the evolving force that is Dead Retinas, still one of the best emerging bands and now maybe just that much more impressive.

Get Gang Of Wolves as a name your own price download from http://deadretinas.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/DeadRetinas

8/10

RingMaster 12/08/2013

 

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Dead Retinas: Dawn Of The Dead Retinas EP

august band promo

If you are looking for niceties and sophisticated music to relax to then give UK punks Dead Retinas a wide berth as they only deal in abrasive antagonistic rock n roll which leaves you enflamed in attitude and sonic aggression. Earlier in the year the band impressed with their debut EP Dead Retinas vs. The World, the release a grazing and fiery treat of unbridled infection and invigorating adrenaline driven punk rock, but was a mere teaser for their mighty follow up, Dawn Of The Dead Retinas EP. Their debut left one fuelled by anticipation for what was to come from the Manchester quartet and they have those expectations not only quenched but seeming quite inadequate as an assumption now that the band has unleashed this sensational EP.

The first thing the release does is bring thoughts of The Dickies to mind simply from the titles of their two EPs, the band taking inspiration from movies just as the Americans did early on and both with a mischievous glint in their eyes. Musically though, despite both stirring up the senses with instinctive punk rock, they part company. Whereas the LA band were arguably the first pop punksters, Dead Retinas bitch slap the ear with a sound which is like brawl between Pinhead Gunpowder, Cancer Bats, The Hives, and Dead Kennedys. It is an irresistible brew which offers diversity within a uniform of middle finger defiance and tongue in cheek antagonism. Since forming the band has corrupted stages alongside the likes of Four Short Of A Miracle, Landmarks, Falter, The City Divided, Zsilent Z and many more, and all the time have been emerging as one of the most refreshing and promising punk bands around, the new EP only deepens that acclaim whilst showing the band is evolving and maturing as songwriters and musicians all the time and well on the way to being to the fore of UK punk.

Consisting of three tracks, the EP pounces on the ear drum with venomous spite and aggressive energy through LSD, a track ep 2 artworkshowing invention and psychotic imagination. It is a delicious psyche bruise which twists and turns into a bedlam touching sonic confrontation, an irrepressible captivation from start to finish. The song enters on grazing riffs, predatory bass leers, and thumping beats pounced upon by the coarse squalls of vocalist Sam Hendo. The track soon settles into a ferocious yet restrained form of sonic combat with Sex Pistols hooks from guitarist Jack Thompson latched to his ear scouring riffs and senses gnawing basslines from CJ Smith, the pair with Hendo combining for an anthemic gang shout chorus. It is a great rampage which is elevated further when the track slips into psychedelic tendencies soaked in a classic rock solo which loses sanity turning into a synapse scorching sonic acid. It is a ‘painful’ end which completes an outstanding song, though it is eclipsed by the even greater presence of Just Because You Drink Jack Daniels Doesn’t Mean You’re Rock and Roll.

The track is a fusion of psyche, noise, punk rock, and quite magnetic. Immediately the song is confronting the ear with a snarling bass, scything riffs, and the abusive rhythms of drummer Lee O’Connor which never let you off the hook from start to finish, those bass growls of Smith an eager devilish companion. There is a slight bluesy lilt to the guitar as Hendo sets one up for a fall with malevolent chuckles and challenging tones questioning the listener. With additional Dead Kennedys like riffs and the twin barracking of drums and bass the song just ignites rapture for its compelling sounds. With also a mix of Kabul Golf Club shagging Gallows to its breath, the track is a glorious riot of energy and sounds which fires up even greater expectations of the band ahead.

The release is completed by Swarm The Decks, an incendiary merger of enslaving rhythms, raw erosive riffs, and a scrap of vocals from all three vocalists. Like a quarrel with the Beastie Boys and Discharge it is an in your face agitator which without the contagious lures of the other pair still pulls up an equal satisfaction through its combative and challenging intensity.

You always expect and hope a band will improve release by release but Dead Retinas have taken big steps on from what was a strong and vibrant debut with Dawn Of The Dead Retinas. For all punk rock fans the band is a must.

https://www.facebook.com/DeadRetinas

RingMaster 18/12/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright