Them Wolves – German For Duke EP

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Sounding like the softer spoken cousin of Coilguns, though with the same rapacious dissonance, and employing the snarling provocation of a Bishop and the turbulent fire of The Locust strapped to the abrasive beauty of The Jesus Lizard, UK noise rock disruptors Them Wolves make their debut with an EP which is as furious as it is compelling and as sonically destructive as it is caustically seductive. Five tracks of corrosive distrust and clangorous temptation, the German For Duke EP is a delicious cacophonous brawl created with a craft and imagination only those of unique synaptic disorientation could conjure.

Hailing from Birmingham, the trio of Greg Coates, Stuart-Lee Tovey, and Noel Campbell is another impressive encounter to emerge from a rising Midlands scene, a band carving out a startling individual presence within this wind of blossoming enterprise and now preparing to recruit more passions from prospective loyal fans with their first release as it sends twisted aural shapes into a waiting wider national awareness. The band has earned a strong reputation from their live storms which have seen them intimidate stages with the likes of Fucked Up, Trash Talk, Dope Body, Blacklisters, and Bats, but German For Duke as it manipulates and blasts the senses feels like the key to much more.

As soon as opening stings of guitar sonics accompanied by coarse riffs, subsequently joined by even more caustic vocals, brings The Wild Girl of Champagne into view senses and thoughts are ripped from their slumber. The track soon becomes a scything swipe of noise as rhythms tips the balance of intimidation into the favour of predation and the guitars cut through the air with acidic Errol Flynn like sabre swishes of noise. It is a magnetic tempest which draws out the passions with ease and ignites them further as it turns in on itself with a relatively peaceful aside, a kind of lull where bitchy riffs from both sets of stringed conspirators offer a Stinking Lizaveta captivation spiked by the Fall like rhythm and vocal punctuation. Raising to another crescendo it is a riveting blaze of punishing discord and frantic fascination, a potent blaze to mark the introduction of the band and EP that is unafraid to test and complicate things further with a sludgy breath of invention before one final riot of sound.

The following Folding a Napkin on Terminal Island, is of the same breeding seed, the song another crusading squall of synapse mining rhythmic provocation within a scorching shower of sonic industry crafted into an evocative narrative, an aural tale that scrapes and sears its leaden hues deeply into senses and thoughts whilst teasing the passions with enticing venomous grooves. The track is a brief yet contagiously busy piece of confrontation, guitars and rhythms enslaving with their respective serpentine seduction and muscular animosity.

Let’s You and Him Fight takes its time to impose its lethal toxins, beckoning in the listener at first with a Gang Of Four like weave before expanding it into a melodically washed maze of invention and rhythmic chastisement led by the again ear abrasing vocals. Complete with a dip of scuzz and vitriol, the track pushes release and band into another street rife with distinct and unique essences set to a canvas of brain frying intensity. Cutting and emotive, though always under the rein of concussive intent, the song leaves exhaustion and bliss in its place, as well as a lingering and disorientated rapture for the alignment of infection fuelled grooves and an almost funky underbelly to a raptorial stalking, the bass its most carnivorous sounding yet.

Once You’re More Like a Young Mary Bell staggers into the ear with staccato beats and pestilential riffing, the battle becomes even more deliciously intensive, the band fusing air and heat into a swamp of noise that eats away at the listener and chews their brain with a bestial suffocation of ruinous intent. A doom/sludge like intensity takes the track into its menacing finale though still sparking with schizophrenic imagination and a ravenous noise fuelled craft.

Final track Wolf Song preys on fears and the wounds already induced by the EP, guitars stalking with sonic saliva dripping from every note expelled and vocals a raucous chafing stealing any free emotion and breath for their own inciting ends. With the bass finding another depth to its gnarled throat, the track is a towering sinister embrace of mordancy wrapped in the beauty of noise. It is a triumphant end to an equally impressive release, the Distorted Tapes / It’s Just Noise released German For Duke the kind of raw animal you do not want to meet at night and Them Wolves its pack leader with no wish to leave you safe or unblemished. It is the entrance of a masterful sonic annoyance which will only get better and more stunning.

http://www.themwolves.co.uk

9/10

RingMaster 10/08/2013

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Fuckshovel: This Is What We Are

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    This Is What We Are is an album you cannot fail to become wrapped up in and find yourself recruited to its defiant brawl of irresistible noise and energy. Unleashed by UK rockers Fuckshovel, the release is a riotous storm of rampant rock n roll with no intent to compromise or accept mere appreciation of its forceful sounds, it is all or nothing and for us it is everything such the compelling and inciting muscular pleasure on offer.

Formed in the back street of London in 2005, Fuckshovel has a striking sound which is so easy to joyfully describe. The quartet stare the listener straight in the eyes with a confrontation brewed from the metallic imagination and might of Therapy?, the defiant pose and infectious punk abrasion of The Ruts, and the raw dirty rock n roll of The Wildhearts. To that you can add essences of early Anthrax and The Adicts but primarily throughout the album the first trio come to mind with the punk quartet the major spice to the music which is undeniably from the distinct ownership of Fuckshovel. The pedigree of the band members included experiences gained through playing with the likes of Cradle of Filth, Decimator, Basement Jaxx, Plan B, and remnants of Phil Lynott’s Grand Slam, the foursome infusing those elements into their new venture. The years since has seen the band share stages with bands such as The Germs, Fucked Up, Jaguar Love, Glen Matlock, and Innerpartysystem, receive an invitation to showcase material at SXSW in Texas to great success and response, as well as receiving acclaim and strong radio play upon the release of debut single Long Time Dead, something equalled by the accompanying video too.

Released on February 18th, This Is What We Are is primed to thrust the band to the widest national recognition well if Fuckshovel cover artworkirrepressible and skilfully contagious sounds are any degree of persuasion and the album has those in thrilling abundance. Recorded with producer Rohan Onraet, the album just barges through the ear from its first note to the last middle finger vocal scowl of the release. It is a merciless tempest of antagonistic rhythms, crippling riffs, and caustic emotive vocal. Opener Germs Of Empire bursts free with drums and guitars fighting each other for attention though both receive the fullest from the first bruising touch they deliver. Once settled into its stride the track brings in the Malcom Owen like vocals of Jon Stone to further inspire The Ruts flavouring already washing over the senses whilst the music spreads into a sinewy rock adventure with attitude and melodic teasing to the fore. It is a fiery encounter which starts the album off at a great height and alone makes the release and band one you want to know much more about.

The Antidote scrapes over the ear next, the scarring riffs of Ian Fisher and enslaving drums of Dave Hirschheimer demanding whilst the glorious throaty bass tones of John Faulkner bring instant submission to their predatory mastery. The track is less distinctive than the first but with ease lays a contagion and beckoning which is impossible to refuse. It takes no time in grabbing the enthused enlistment of feet and emotions whilst unveiling compelling enterprise to keep things unpredictable and inciting, the same claim which can be said of Black, another song which arguably does not venture to far into new territories but is just a thrilling assault of ravenous riffs and sonic teasing. It has a towering presence nonetheless to leave one exhausted at its departure and enamoured in its company.

The first Fuckshovel single and their newest stand side by side and both spark the richest of rapture. Long Time Dead chews synapses with its gnarly bass attack and niggling sonic riffing before unleashing a punk rock furnace of imagination and greedy raptorial addiction. Anthemic and as infectious as lustful thoughts, the track is a near demonic addiction brought through insatiable energy, rampaging sounds, and aggression veined by a bass sound you just drool over. New single Schizophonic is the same viral violation in a different guise. Once again the bass of Faulkner ensnares the heart whilst the sonic manipulations of Fisher leaves the senses twisted in ardour within the numbing result of the barbed beats from Hirschheimer. The punk and rock tempest evolves with the vocals into a presence which consumes and riles willing emotions. It is a riot which can only be devoured again and again.

This Is What We Are is an outstanding debut from a band we can only see becoming a real force in UK rock. Tracks such as the melodically snarling Vegas Nerve, the towering All You Got with its Dead Kennedys like hooks and One Minute Silence aggressive gait, and the violently cajoling Skull and Bones all continue to ignite more unbridled fire and euphoria for the release whilst the closing pair of tracks, the insistent juggernaut 2500 Days and the unruly Portia’s Box without arguably reaching the heights of the rest of the album, impressively close off an impressive and exciting debut. The release is rock n roll at its very best and Fuckshovel the worse antagonistic nightmare for all who like a quiet life.

www.facebook.com/F.Shovel

RingMaster 17/01/2013

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