Loose Fit – Self Titled

If we had taken the time to contemplate a fusion of the essential juices of bands such as The Raincoats, Essential Logic, Au Pairs, and Noseholes we might have conjured up something not too far removed from the pleasure now brought to ears by Australian post punks Loose Fit. In saying that though, the Sydney quartet has an openly distinct voice in sound and enterprise, it all in thrilling evidence within a self-titled debut EP.

Formed by vocalist/saxophonist Anna Langdon and drummer Kaylene Milner, fashion school friends who had bonded over their mutual love of experimental music, Loose Fit soon found itself taking creative shape with the addition of guitarist Max Edgar and bassist Richard Martin. Across 2019, the band earned a rich reputation for their live presence as they captivated a growing mass of fans around the release of their first single, Pull The Lever, earlier this year. It was a track which only enticed eager acclaim and support and they can expect more of the same through their irresistible EP, a “moody critique of the absurd” taking on themes of frustration, disillusion, fear, love, and rage.

That first single opens up the EP, Pull The Lever instantly gipping attention through the hulking drawl of Martin’s bass. Within a breath it sparks the groove and swing of the track, beats skipping alongside to escalate the temptation as the guitar teases from behind, it becoming more vocal and manipulative as Langdon’s voice with a spicing of disdain to its lilt again increases the organic addictiveness of the track. The infectiousness of the song has a touch of The Mo-Dettes to it, a punky contagion eagerly aligning to the post punk virulence just as rapaciously inspiring body and inspiration.

Riot is next up, surrounding the senses in a sonic mist before again the bass leads a voracious dance for song and body to launch themselves upon. Langdon’s vocals again mix confrontation with eager catchiness; attitude soaking both as Milner’s rhythms spring their voracious swing and Edgar’s guitar infests it all with a sonic ravening while the synth of Jonathan Boulet adds its lure.

As the first song, it proves a seed in an inescapable addiction quickly brewing which is only further stoked by the following pair of Reflux and Black Water. The first saunters in on another gripping bassline, Langdon’s sax chirping away alongside before matching its groove with its own cunning stroll. It had us hook line and sinker within seconds, only tightening the hold as again Langdon with Milner flirtatiously taunt ears with their Delta 5-esque vocal union. The second is the band’s new single and it too was soon preying on a readily given submission to the EP’s manipulations. There is a whiff of The Slits to the outstanding encounter, a spicing which only accentuates its calm but feral majesty.

The EP is concluded by Delete, a track enticing ears with the caustic persuasion of guitar and the glowing discordance of the sax, that alone enough to spark a lusty attention only spiralling with the grungy gurning of Martin’s bass and Langdon’s persistently persuasive and alluring vocals.

The EP is superb, manna for our post punk appetites with plenty more in character and sound to feast upon. We are sure we will not be alone.

The Loose Fit EP is out now via FatCat Records: available @ https://loosefit.bandcamp.com/album/loose-fit


Pete RingMaster 18/04/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

We Were Promised Jetpacks – Unravelling


Pungent in sound and emotion, Unravelling is a proposition which simultaneously makes a big impact and worms sneakily away under the skin and into the psyche. The new and third album from Scottish rockers We Were Promised Jetpacks, it is a riveting exploration, an adventure capturing ears and imagination like there is no tomorrow. Everything about the album is thick, in rhythmic persuasion, emotive intimacy, and raging melodies, but equally there is a clarity allowing every individual drama to play out their narratives musically and emotionally. The Edinburgh band has never been low on attention grabbing enterprise and songwriting but Unravelling is a coming of age, We Were Promised Jetpacks gracing a new plateau in invention and sonic expression.

Formed in 2008 by friends and vocalist/guitarist Adam Thompson, drummer Darren Lackie, bassist Sean Smith, and guitarist Michael Palmer whilst the four were at University, We Were Promised Jetpacks soon became a potent presence on the Glasgow music scene and almost as quickly were snapped up by FatCat Records. Debut album These Four Walls was unveiled in 2009 to critical acclaim, leading the band to an intense run of shows and festival appearances as well as supporting bands like Frightened Rabbit and The Twilight Sad. After the release of The Last Place You’ll Look EP the following year, the band set about second album In the Pit of the Stomach, which was recorded at Sigur Ros’s Sundlaugin Studios in Iceland. Again fans and media devoured it keenly and with praise whilst the band’s live reach saw them hit the US to great success. Now the band is set to recharge the passions with Unravelling, a release looking lyrically at “the notion of a conflicted protagonist struggling to keep their life on course, while battling a creeping sense of uncertainty and impending doom.” The first release featuring new member and multi-instrumentalist Stuart McGachan, and recorded with Paul Savage (Teenage Fanclub, King Creosote, The Twilight Sad, Mogwai), Unravelling is a tempestuous flight for senses and thoughts. Its climate is sultry and sonically hazy, its emotion tense and tenacious, but mostly the album is simply an inescapable captivation.

Safety In Numbers opens up the release, an increasingly brewing caress of keys the first touch before melodies and shadows slip into the emerging landscape of the song. Thompson’s vocals bring a plainer but no less expressive essence, his Scottish accent adding to the colour of the unveiling narrative. Instantly it is an enthralling persuasion, the walls and intensity of the track growing and thickening as an emotive wash reminding of fellow Scots Letters, immerses the imagination. There is also an unrelenting persistence to the encounter which is almost erosive in its effect, a potency which is never far away from the heart of every song on Unravelling, but a relentless baiting unafraid to share time with flowing enterprise and inventive twists which flirt across the track.

Its successor Peaks And Troughs is the same in many ways, a seduction of even catchier endeavour and sonic ingenuity which blossoms on the muscular and intensive persistence. The bass of Smith digs into darker throatier but virulent temptation whilst the imposing beats of Lackie swing with strong and imposing relish, the combination a gripping core and driving energy upon which the evocative and colourful design of guitar and keys matched by the excellent vocals flourish. The song pushes the strong start up another level with ease, a peak swiftly matched by the shimmering warmth and melodic calm of I Keep It Composed. To that elegant side though, the song explores another almost cavernous expanse of rhythmic intimidation and contagion resulting in an absorbing and hypnotic embrace. Its texture is as thick as smog and presence as radiant as the sun’s touch, and quite scintillating.

The following Peace Sign brings a less intensive and imposing approach to ears but is similarly as chunky in its rhythmic growl and weight and as slim in its excesses. The bass of Smith again excels, swaggering and flirting with grizzled majesty whilst the guitars of Palmer and Thompson weave engrossing structures and hues around the latter’s ever potent vocal suasion. Less an epidemic than a slow infestation with its resourceful might and beauty, the song is dazzling and the perfect set up for the similarly impressing Night Terror. A heavy stroll of beats sets up a frame around electro funk revelry at first, keys and drums subsequently aligning for a bubbly and vivacious coaxing before a sultry haziness kisses the surface of all and a Josef K like causticity treats the senses. It is an intrigue drenched offering which is less urgent and compulsive than previous songs whilst giving a new aspect to the album’s expanding character and richly satisfying experience.

The dark and moody drama of Disconnecting comes next; weighty keys spawning a sinister, noir wrapped climate within which vocals shimmer and percussion dances. It is a slow haunting embrace with sinew sculpted textures and melancholic radiance, which may not quite match those tracks before it in some ways but surpasses them in menacing scenery and emotional shading. Its success is matched by both Bright Minds and A Part Of It, the first a lighter but no less emotionally attentive encounter and its successor a rawer, abrasing swamp of sonic mystique and craft around a hungry rhythmic persuasion. Again neither quite lives up to the opening clutch of songs but certainly bring new delicious twists to the flight and emotional examination of the album.

Through the darker air and almost predatory intent of the excellent Moral Compass, a song just as striking in its melodic grace as it is in its bordering on caustic breath, and the mesmeric almost stately beauty of Peace Of Mind, band and album enslave ears and thoughts majestically. The almost epic instrumental grandeur of the second of the pair is a journey all of its own, the imagination unavoidably wrapped up and sparking from its sonic emprise, before final song Ricochet provides a lasting tempest of dramatic clouds and melodic tenacity within another blistering frame of invention and emotion.

Unravelling is an album which grips from the off but makes an even greater and thrilling impression the more time it is allowed to submerge and colour the senses. It is the finest hour of We Were Promised Jetpacks with ease and surely the doorway to a new level of attention and fervour towards the band’s spellbinding sound.

Unravelling is available via FatCat Records now @ http://fatcat.sandbaghq.com/we-were-promised-jetpacks-unravelling.html


RingMaster 14/10/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Mice Parade – Candela


    Mice Parade has never created music which feeds the unadventurous and lazy, and has always conjured up sounds to stretch and inspire the imagination as well as in many ways challenge the senses with its diverse and eclectic use of aural ideas and textures. New album Candela is no different, the seventh full length release from the band being in their own words their ‘pop’ album, and one which certainly takes time to make its full persuasion but rewards richly for the extended effort in exploring all its shady corners, inviting shadows, and thrilling light.

Essentially the solo project of New Yorker and multi-instrumentalist Adam Pierce for which he additionally recruits musicians of equal vision and inventive mind set, Mice Parade is again a release which explores a multitude of sounds globally and in style for an impacting experience which can seduce or equally trouble the senses, both extremes equally rewarding and magnetically pleasing. Released via Fatcat Records, Candela is named after a late-night bar in Madrid which is renowned as a flamenco guitar players’ Mecca. As with previous releases the album has a hunger to investigate and develop not to forget share, numerous rhythmic and melodic world searched aural discoveries re-invented into unique and compelling new shades and voices. The band has never been an immediate persuasion for personal tastes and Candela is no different but as is generally the norm once asked and given that extra attention and time it unveils another enjoyable flood of inspiring and intriguing enterprise from the band.

One essence of the band which has always found an inexhaustible acceptance here is the veining of discord which either whispers ortimthumb prowls amidst their music and none more so than in opener Listen Hear Glide Dear. The track is a caustic wash of sonic unrest and folk invitation coated in an unsettling distrustful ambience which intrudes and permeates every atom of the senses to disrupt their ease and open the doors to provocation. Dirge like in its gait and abrasive in its embrace, the track leaves the emotions ringing from its jangly rub allowing the following Currents to slip in to its place with ease and bewitching temptation. From its restrained start big bulging rhythms and a lovely throaty bassline saunters across the ear whilst the fiery touch of the guitar ensures that there is still a sinister element at play. The delicious vocals of Caroline Lufkin (Temporary Residence) lay a siren like hand upon the passions to temper and equally feed the now agitated formidable rhythmic dance which almost bruises the listener within the rising and coarse sonic embrace permeating the air. It is a tremendous opening to the album, the two tracks in their distinct individuality uniting for a startling and inciting introduction to the release.

Next up This River Has A Tide continues the potency with further intensity and beauty which rival and complement each other. It starts with a continuation of the rough handling of the ear with the rhythms as punchy as ever and the bass developing a carnivorous appetite to its great corrosive sound matched by the guitar. Either side of their first appearance though there is a flamenco whispering elegance which is just irresistible, the spiralling melodic keys and soft guitar beckoning the scalding snarl mentioned and regaining their control on the other side with further  magnetic weaves of melodic enterprise and that vocal mesmerism. The merger of the two is a towering wall of almost savage intensity and greed veined by elegant and transfixing melodic beauty. It is a masterful merger and thrill aided by the dual switching vocals of Pierce and Lufkin.

Across the lively funk appetite of Pretending within a more reserved cage, things take another pleasing turn of variety and adventure. As the twin vocal attack take their turns to express the narrative things brew up in energy and stance to explode in a rumbling rhythmic and feisty dance of pop excitement. As the album, the song twists and offshoots into further engaging looks and exploration whilst holding clinging to its spine driving destination. The track does not ignite the same strength of fires as previous songs but still enthrals and opens up a well of thoughts and emotions with its invention and unpredictable ingenuity.

Through the wonderful instrumentals of The Chill House, a piece which is as meditative as it is an itch upon the senses and Look See Dream Me with its immersive temptation the sun of the album discovers its easiest yet warmest hold whilst the folk swagger of Las Gentes Interesantes is like the rising sun, hot, enchanting, and easy to bask within without any resistance offering objection. Admittedly the ‘quieter’ latter half of the album does not quite inspire the height of ardour as the first but with songs like this there is never a moment not to acclaim.

With a final highlight in Contessa and a return of those big sinewy rhythms framing the ever stunning vocals of Lufkin as well as a sonic tango of riveting and interplaying melodic expression and invention, before the pulsating closer Warm Hand in Narnia, the album is a striking and deeply satisfying endeavour. It takes and needs time to reveal all of its glories and purpose but Candela makes sure the rewards far outweigh the effort.



RingMaster 15/04/2013

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