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

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com

 

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

Falter: Self Titled EP

Since forming in 2010, British alternative metalers Falter has been building a fine reputation with fans and bands they have shared stages with alike. It is a band on a steady rise, the Blackburn quartet finding a welcome and eager response to their varied flavoured rock/metal sound. Their self titled EP is their debut recording and a fine introduction to the country as a whole from one impressively emerging band.

As the dark chug of the guitars warp around the ear the opening track on the EP immediately grabs the attention. Hundred Reasons slowly unfurls its muscular weight then starts captivating with a scorched groove from guitarist Matt Flaherty, ensuring from that moment that the senses are wide awake and keen to feast on the addictive vein. Adding to the already captivating mix the vocals of Tom Eccles blend an excellent mix of clean and scathing growls into the emotive heart of the song. With the rhythms from drummer Phil Earnshaw forming a strong though not overly aggressive, the gnarly bass of Joe Walsh chews wonderfully on the ear from within to ignite imagination. As with all the songs in their varied forms, the track is a brewing storm of melodic metal and bruising rock brought with a metalcore/post hardcore intensity. It is unpredictable and adventurous, something you can call the band itself even if their sound does not yet have a truly distinct voice.

The following Hospice is lower key with emotion fuelling each word and note, the inner intensity bringing a real depth and feel to the song. As the passion of the track breaks through it erupts into brawls of coarse energy with vocals to match, hurt and deeply seated feelings dripping from every second of the furious energetic bursts. On the whole though the track is restrained, its well crafted and presented heart a captivating breath. Arguably the song does not stand out as obviously as the first, its body reserved in ear hooking and individual elements, but it is equal in power and impact to show the diversity in writing and sound of Falter.

Worship closes up the release with another heighten offering of aggression and emotional might. It sits between the previous tracks in intensity though has a snarl at times to intimidate and a melodic caress in other moments to heat feelings. Again the bass of Walsh is a highlight, the shadowed tones a prowling force, whilst the vocals of Eccles once more show their range. He is maybe not the most accomplished vocalist but surpasses many others with the way he brings the passion and heart of one suspects, personal lyrical intent through a striking delivery to perfectly compliment the sounds.

Falter are a band you can only see bigger and greater things ahead for and one who will ignite eager anticipation for all they create, as they have with already their first EP.

Download their self titled EP for free from http://falter.bandcamp.com/album/falter

RingMaster 14/09/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The best and easiest way to get your music on iTunes, Amazon and lots more. Click below for details.

Dead Retinas: Dead Retinas vs. The World EP

Sometimes a band comes along to ignite all the personal fires inside and leave one counting the days to the next musical adrenaline rush to come from their creativity. UK punks Dead Retinas is such a band and their Dead Retinas vs. The World EP, an invigorating burst of essential punk rock to fire up the engines of passion. The quartet create punk rock which is honest, aggressive, and vibrant: their sound steeped in the essentials of punk and fuelled by the energies of modern rock. The resulting experience unbridled pleasure.

The band consists of vocalist Sam Hendo, guitarist/vocalist Jack Thompson, bassist/vocalist CJ Smith who all knew each other since high school, and Lee O’Connor on drums. Originally called Hounds, until they found out about another band with the same name, the band took the Dead Retinas name from something actor Nick Frost said on the commentary track to the film Paul. To date the band has impressed with ease through the sharing of stages with the likes of Four Short Of A Miracle, Saving Syenna, The City Divided, ZsilentZ, and Falter to name a few.

Dead Retinas vs. The World is their debut release and a mighty powerful four track beast of an introduction it is too. It is punk rock at its best, confrontational, relentless, and heart driven. Their music recalls the best elements of bands such as Cancer Bats, NOFX, and Pinhead Gunpowder alongside the fire of Rage Against The Machine and Red Tape. It is all twisted into their own incendiary powder keg of bruising and explosive individuality as the band emerges as one of the best new entrants within punk for a long time.

The release ruptures the atmosphere from the start with Pure Gold, a track with heart splintering riffs and combative rhythms. The vocals hit every scorched and aggressive range perfectly to offer as much texture and rich diversity as the sounds around them. From the choppy greedy riffs, the uncompromising beats, to the growling guttural bass sound, the song corrupts and enthrals the senses for the deepest satisfaction. The band is also unafraid to bring extra treats in to the mix such as the burning guitar solo which simply flames away gloriously on top of already inspired raging inferno of addiction.

The following A 20 Note Ain’t For Coke finds a higher plateau to leap and explode upon with its infectious hypnotic hooked riffs and magnetic breath. It offers an old school flavour to bring thoughts of seventies UK bands The Lurkers, The Outcasts, and early Undertones to the fore whilst chewing away with a slight hardcore hunger. Brief and uncomplicated, the song is an immense blast of sheer instinctive satisfaction to leave one breathless and eager for much more.

    I’ve Got A Nerve brings a slight ska fusion to its muscular frame though it is mere spicery soon overwhelmed by the raw energy of the track. Arguably the less effective of the four, it is still a song to leave a benchmark for most other bands to aim for and ensure the appetite is still ravenous for more of the same.

The release closes with the excellent Hang The Bastards. It starts with just a delicious gnarly bass and thumping drums union, their predatory companionship alone boiling up an addiction like pleasure. Into its stride the song develops a scorched bluesy swagger which cores the punk aggression and vocal forcefulness, its groove hypnotic magnificence.  There is even a little tinge of stoner rock to the presence of the song, though its metallic intensity is, especially at its climax, RATM spawn.

Dead Retinas vs. The World EP is outstanding, one of the best debuts in a long time. If punk rock triggers the deepest rampages of joy within then Dead Retinas might just have you squealing with orgasmic delight.

https://www.facebook.com/DeadRetinas

RingMaster 12/09/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The best and easiest way to get your music on iTunes, Amazon and lots more. Click below for details.