Dispel – Lore

photo by Novus Obscurum

In a world cast in increasing chaos and ravening shadows, the heart and determination of a warrior defines those that try to bring defiance and hope to the blackness. Maybe every century past and to come is wrapped in such respective darkness, but the spirit of ‘heroes and viragos’ certainly thrived in medieval times and now within the debut album from US dark electronic collective Dispel.

The fascinating Lore is a concept album embracing the “historic lore, mythology and mysticism” surrounding a hero’s journey in those Middle Ages but equally a tale as agile in inspiring thoughts and experiences echoing the now within an electronic soundscape of darkwave, Neo-Classical, and gothic rock just as primed to ignite ears and imagination. In sound and word, Lore is a captivation; a musical and lyrical tapestry which effortlessly grabbed attention from its very first breath to weave even greater intrigue and compulsion by the listen whether as a broad view and personally intimate incitement.

Dispel is the creation of drummer/keyboardist Scott Dispel, a founding member of old school hardcore band Face Value and currently the drummer for TEXTBEAK whose Mike Textbeak produced Lore. Alongside Scott, the band is completed by the richly magnetic tones of mezzo-soprano vocalist Ravensea and the potent presence of fellow vocalist Sean Gallows. The album also sees guitarist Sean Morrissey and bassist Jae Jones add their dark craft to the adventure , one which swiftly caught the imagination through album opener, Spiritual Warrior (The Hero).

The first track strides forth from an ecclesiastical dawn, its step confident and bold and matched in voice and swing. A tenebrous hue coats every electronic note and Cimmerian shaded syllable escaping Gallow’s throat, the track like a magnetic Clan of Xymox meets John Foxx era Ultravox enticement and quickly and thickly gripping.

(cover art by Scott ‘Wizardfool’ Stearns)

The Call (to Adventure) continues the album’s fine start; the just as swiftly enthralling voice of Ravensea radiating from within the song’s gloomier but no less tempting breath and embrace. The less defined fuzz of guitar adds a sinister almost toxic aspect to the track’s air yet is soon engulfed by the electro pop infectiousness of a chorus which had us keenly bouncing whilst prompting thoughts of March Violets  in their more synth ‘pop’ styled moments.

The light and romanticism of Ravensea’s voice and the crepuscular instincts of the sounds around her again provide an ear enthralling landscape within next up Modal Consequence (The Threshold).  Its melodic mist carries a great Visage-esque shade whilst its rhythmic gait, whether a sombre amble or elevated dance, is thick incitement for song and body before Abyssal Hammer (Chaos) with an instantly more imposing rhythmic swing driven by air splattering eats and the tantalising hum of the bass needs mere seconds to have us hooked. Emerging our favourite song, the track is a warning come declaration of darkness as virulently infectious as it is eagerly menacing and quite superb with the blend of Gallows and Ravensea’s voices pure harmonic charisma.

The first of a pair of “Sacred Choral pieces” is next in the evocative shape of Gift of the Goddess (Andante in Bb), later in the album  Atonement (Adagio in Bb)a similarly provocatively woven piece inspired by ‘Infelix ego,’ a Latin meditation composed by Girolamo Savonarola before he was burned at the stake. Each proved a seed for the imagination before the following likes of Hero’s Revelation (The Helper) with its overcast melodic and atmospheric beauty, again centred by the radiance that is Ravensea’s voice, and The Depth of Transformation (The Return) with its Tartarean arising from similarly infernal depths respectively had ears and imagination alive.

Slipping back across the album and between those two pairs of tracks sits Temptation (The Last Test), an enchanting and bewitching slice of electro intimation and vocal glamour as dark as it is lustrous and another song within Lore which got under the skin in an array of ways.

Though it captivated from the first moment it graced ears, enthralment only grew as the tale and melodic electronic adventure within Lore was further were explored and revealed play by play; an emprise sure to connect with your own personal journeys.

Lore is available for download and on CD with vinyl to follow via https://www.dispelmusic.com and https://dispelmusic.bandcamp.com/album/lore-lp

https://www.facebook.com/DispelMusicdotcom   https://twitter.com/Dispel_Music

Pete RingMaster 25/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Roars within shadows

Courtesy of the similarly talented Shauna McLarnon (Ummagma/Shameless PR), we have a collection of tracks which not only deserve attention, they simply demand it.

NYC-based, The 1865 has already left an ear gripping mark on 2019 with the release of their debut album, Don’t Tread On We!, and are ensuring it is leaving with a just as potent  slice of their inimitable sound through new single, John Brown’s Gat.

Formed in 2017, The 1865 embrace influences from the likes of Bad Brains, Jimi Hendrix, Muddy Waters, and Minor Threat to their sound and listening to the new single it is easy to imagine that X-Ray Spex are another to inspire their creative instincts. Taken from their first full-length, the track was written in honour of John Brown, “a white man who believed that African Americans should not be enslaved and eventually he lost his life on behalf of his Nubian brothers and sisters.”

Instantly the guitar of band founder Sacha Jenkins (The White Mandingos, The Wilding Incident) teases ears, its sonic nagging swiftly joined by the bold rhythms of drummer Chuck Treece. It is a compelling start only more irresistible once the tones of vocalist Carolyn “Honeychild” Coleman (Apollo Heights / The Veldt, Badawi) stirs up even greater enterprise and animation in the song. Constantly twisting and turning in unpredictability and contagious imagination, the song swept us up in its creative theatre and punk rock rapacity; emerging  as one of the best singles to pleasure our ears this year.

Just as captivating in its own unique way is the debut single from dark electronic collective Dispel. Rising in a senses embracing fusion of darkwave, synthpop, and gothic rock, Modal Consequence is an atmospherically caliginous hug of sound and intimation providing an enthralling teaser to the band’s first album due early next year.

Dispel is the creation of Scott Dispel, a founding member of hardcore band Face Value and also currently the drummer for TEXTBEAK. Within the band, he is joined by vocalist Ravensea and Sean Gallows, the trio reaping inspirations from artists such as Sisters of Mercy, Bauhaus, Clan of Xymox, Depeche Mode, VNV Nation, Delerium, The Misfits and The Cramps for a sound within the single which openly aligns familiar hues to bold new imagination.

Taken from their debut full-length, Lore, and “the moment where the Hero/Heroin takes that first step into that dangerous realm of the unknown” in their journey, Modal Consequence quickly envelops the listener in its dark hues, suggestive textures which prove as instinctively catchy as they are hauntingly sunless. Within that rich allure, the siren-esque tones of Ravensea captivate as she shares the drama and unknown horizons of the song’s protagonist.

With an Evanescence meets Nightwish breath to its electronic adventure, Modal Consequence quickly and firmly had us absorbed and keenly anticipating the arrival of Lore.

Another artist with a new album due early 2020 is Atlanta songstress K Michelle DuBois and she presents a magnetic appetiser in the shape of new single Feast or Famine. She admits she is not sure yet if the latest track will be part of the album’s collection of offerings yet such its inescapable captivation and another example of its creator’s instinct for exploring new and eclectic adventures, the song only provides a thick lure for its larger successor.

With guitarist Dan Dixon and drummer Chandler Rentz alongside on the song, DuBois weaves a sound enfolding eighties pop and electro inspirations in indie rock and darker textured flavours. There is a Stevie Nicks hue to her presence and the seduction of the music itself and equally echoes of the Blondie and Divinyls influence she welcomes though here too something individual arises from a rich blend and, within Feast or Famine, effortlessly enthrals.

The track harmonically shimmers into view, quickly catching its infectious stride as synth and rhythms unite in a catchy stroll over which DuBois’ vocals easily captivate. The electro pop heart within the rock bred body of the song pulsates, its charm a beacon for the bolder rock ‘n’ roll traits of the track to latch on to like a moth and from start to finish, it all together provides one riveting contagion.

Whether the track makes the final line-up of that upcoming album we will find out soon but it only sparks keen anticipation of that impending release as too does its predecessor, Waves Break, it similarly a virulent like of electro pop ‘n’ roll, with both available at https://kmichelledubois.bandcamp.com/track/feast-or-famine

Finally we eagerly suggest checking out the new EP from US shoegazers, The Veldt. The arresting Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose bears another collection of tracks soaked in the band’s distinct and soulful sound and infectiously takes ears and imagination on atmospheric adventures.

Consisting of identical twins Daniel (vocals, guitar) and Danny Chavis (guitar), Hayato Nakao (bass), Marvin Levi (drums) and Alex Cox (guitar), The Veldt has consistently sparked our imaginations since their releases first emerged in the late eighties/early nineties. Some have fired us up more than others but each flight of their mood thick sound has been a source of fascination and reward with Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose one of the most potent.

The band’s sound is bred on the essences of shoegaze, dream pop, and soul and woven into soundscapes which seduce as they envelop, almost devour the senses. They are emotive affairs as proven by the new EP which come thick in intimation, rich in intimacy, and drenched in catchiness. EP opener, The Color Of Love Is Blue immediately proves the suggestion, its initial melodic invitation an echo of eighties indie pop but wrapped in the atmospheric density and emotion which marks The Veldt sound and an individuality which we can only slightly compare to the little known and now demised Japanese band, Tokyo Chaos City.

From its great start, the EP only pulled us in with richer potency, the bewitching Black and Blue and its fuzz infested climate and Fit to be Tied through its virulent romance of ears wrapping greater seduction and pleasure on the senses. From Daniel’s compelling tones to every aspect of the band’s invasively spellbinding endeavours, the tracks tantalised and ensnared; traits which persist across one of the band’s most absorbing releases yet, both Camus and Dakini smothering infatuated ears with their own imagination consuming charm and drama as emotional intensity comes in equally hypnotic waves.

Completed by the A.R.Kane Mix of I Like The Way You Talk and a Carlos Bess / Jason Furlow Mix of Dakini, the relentlessly absorbing Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose is the epitome of captivation and indeed pleasure.

And that is a roundup of some striking offerings which to ignore will only mean missing out on some real pleasure.

 

Both John Brown’s Gat and Don’t Tread On We! from The 1865 are out now, available digitally via Apple Music, Spotify and directly from the band via Bandcamp, as well as numerous other online stores.

Upcoming live dates for The 1865:

Dec. 07, 2019 New York – The Kingsland (with H.R. and Human Rights, MAAFA, The Screws, Rebelmatic, Universe Ignore Her, Foxtails) – 18+ event

Jan. 09, 2020 New York – Max Fish (with Rebelmatic)

Jan. 18, 2010 New York – Brooklyn Academy of Music BAM Cafe ||| Black Rock Coalition Celebrates MLK (with Major Taylor) – All Ages / Free and Open To The Public

https://www.facebook.com/the1865band   https://twitter.com/the1865band   https://twitter.com/the1865band

Dispel’s Modal Consequence is available now @ https://dispelmusic.bandcamp.com/releases  as a free download with Lore set for release on January 10th, available on vinyl and CD, as well as digital download with pre-orders taken now @ https://www.dispelmusic.com/Album/

https://www.facebook.com/DispelMusicdotcom/

https://www.kmichelledubois.com/   https://www.facebook.com/KMichelleDuBoisMusic   https://twitter.com/kmichelledubois

Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose is available now @ https://theveldtmusic.bandcamp.com/releases

http://www.theveldtmusic.com   https://www.facebook.com/VeldtThe/   https://twitter.com/veldtthe

Pete RingMaster 26/11/2019