Shitkill – The New Breed EP

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The bigger the expanse of sounds and bands we all hear, the more we go looking for that something extra to get excited about. It might not be a big twist which sparks a fire in personal tastes, but something which certainly ignites the imagination and shows that there is still varying degrees of originality within modern music. American metallers Shitkill is a band which with new EP, The New Breed, has plenty of those little differences and definitely teases a burst of enthused attention to ears and thoughts. Hailing out of New York, the quartet cast a sound which draws on a diverse flavouring of sounds; they more often than not seemingly are tagged as groove metal but as the EP shows it is just one shade of many creative colours ripe in their music.

Formed in 2009, Shitkill has continually nurtured a potent reputation for their live presence and sound, not only locally but into broader attention. Their stage impact has been one reason, the band increasingly strengthening their stock as they played with bands like Twelve Foot Ninja, the Cro-Mags, Eyehategod, and D.R.I., but also through their releases. 2010 saw the Asylum EP released but it is fair to say that their self-titled album a year later made the first real mark. Its well-received success was followed by two live albums in 2012 and 2014 respectively, but The New Breed EP is where it is easy to imagine the band soon luring a more global attention.

The EPs title track is first to persuade ears, and does so with swift success thanks to the opening rhythmic dance cast by drummer Damien Moffitt. It is inescapable bait aided by the sonic glances playing around the beats and taken to new heights by the deliciously carnivorous tones of Karina Rykman’s bass. It is animalistic in voice, every flick of a string bringing a predatory edge which simply grips an already awoken appetite. Things only get more compelling as the opening grooves and riffs cast by guitarists Danny Chpatchev and Josh Musto add to the tantalising proposition. The track swings and leaps round with devilment in its heart and creativity, but also an ever increasing unpredictability and imagination. The vocals of Musto scowl and rage, a a0653763495_2gravelly delivery somewhere in the ball park of Phil Anselmo. The song itself can be best described as a mix of System Of A Down, Bloodsimple and indeed Pantera, yet there is plenty more hinting and teasing within the provocation, and showing stronger glimpses as the release proceeds.

It is a potent and highly enticing start, but in some ways just the appetiser as things get more inventive and flavoursome. The next up Vultures instantly brings a new tempest of intrigue and aggressive flavouring, its hardcore essences a buffeting ire against metallic grooving and tangy melodic enterprise. From its initial stomp, the song slips into a compelling noise rock infused stomp, riffs and hooks shuffling with rhythms in a psychopathic yet fluid tango before returning to the stormy onslaught it began with.

Death Giver pushes the adventure of the EP to further riveting heights straight after, the track making a tenaciously imposing entrance with a torrent of riffs pierced by powerfully swung beats. Bass and subsequently vocals only add to the dark drama and intimidation though it is only the lead to greater irresistible temptation. A rugged proposal at first it suddenly throws off its severe manner and goes on an escapade of creative mania. There might be better ways to describe the sudden burst of ingenuity but with deranged grooves and hooks which feel bedlam bred, there is a delicious insanity to the track. The grooving reminds of The Cardiacs whilst around them the roars of vocals and rhythmic predation is as much punk as it is metal. The track is quite brilliant and those insidious grooves, a lingering serpentine infestation.

An even greater punk ferocity fuels Faceless, the song from its first breath a raging brawl unafraid to bring addictive hooks and spicy grooves into its hostile armoury. Though it cannot quite match the brilliance of its predecessor, the turbulent treat has pleasure full and hunger for more, greedier by the second. Punk metal at its best, the song makes way for the closing excellence of Underworld. It is another almost bestial in presence and tone, riffs and rhythms prowling the listener with persistent hostility whilst adding distractions like sudden agitated beats and vocal causticity. Those demonic grooves make their return again, nestling seductively into the different but no less enthralling landscape of the song. Embracing the metal side of the band’s sound with potent whispers of more classical breeding, the encounter has body and emotions engrossed and complicit in its dark deeds, especially through the closing stretch of heavy footed and superbly lumbering beats from Moffitt courted by the cavernous basslines of Rykman and the equally uncompromising enticements of the guitars.

It is a scintillating end to an impressive and thoroughly thrilling release. Probably like a great many, The New Breed is our introduction to Shitkill, another succumbing to their not majorly original sound but certainly a strikingly inventive and most of all fiercely enjoyable one.

The New Breed EP is available now digitally @ https://shitkill.bandcamp.com/

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RingMaster 03/03/2015

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Stoneghost – Faceless Ghost

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As Faceless Ghost, the new single from UK metallers Stoneghost furiously and creatively bellows in the ears, there is no escaping offering a hearty thank goodness. The reason being that the song and album it comes from, was written at a moment it is fair to say which was pointing to the demise of the band. This had come about because, in the words of vocalist Jason Smith; “I was having a kid and I couldn’t cope with it, I didn’t think I would be able to carry on with the band too, I wasn’t in a good place.” Deciding to go out with a bang and show the world the most potent essence and fury of what was Stoneghost, the South East London quartet created debut album New Age of Old Ways. Thankfully the band’s sound and new offerings found their way to the attention of the Mascot Label Group (Black Label Society, Volbeat, Gojira, Joe Bonamassa), and here we now are with the album scheduled for release in April, its lead single poised to stir up the European metal scene, and Stoneghost seemingly back on compelling course.

The Bromley band began in 2007 and swiftly made a potent impression on the London live scene. Forging a ferocious blaze of rock ‘n’ roll bred from varying strains of metal and a hardcore voracity, the foursome of Cris Finniss (drums), Jamie Nash (bass), Andrew Matthews (guitar), and Smith continued to grip attention and increasingly so across the UK, making highly successful appearances at Bloodstock in 2009 and 2010 with equally impressive performances at the Wacken Open Air festival and Metal Hammer’s Hammerfest IV in their wake over the next couple of years. It was 2013 when the band’s frontman had his ‘crisis’ and turmoil reached the band. Fighting through it though to subsequently record New Age of Old Ways with Russ Russell (Napalm Death, Evile, Dimmu Borgir, Sikth, New Model Army), Stoneghost is now ready to take their place at the forth of British metal and again we can only give thanks.

As the majority of songs gracing the album, Faceless Ghost was bred in that troubled time for band and Smith, the singer talking about the song recently saying, “It’s about my daughter, she was on the way, I was feeling apprehensive and scared about the responsibility and seeing a therapist at the time, I was having some really low points, but because I had a daughter on the way it gave me the reason to sort myself out.” There is a definite personal angst and passion behind the song which echoes that moment, an intimacy to its tempest which rages as potently as the ravenous sounds.

The song opens with a dazzling weave of guitar enterprise, a spicy melodic colour which captivates from around just as swiftly established and equally compelling rhythmic predation. Things only intensify and grip tighter as Smith’s punkish roar spills emotion across the thrash toned canvas. Grooves and hooks add different and fascinating flavours and textures to the song next, the proposition already transcending various metal subgenres whilst brawling with its own aggressive individuality.

Matthews’s superb sonic and melodic designs continue to ignite the imagination as does the lyrical force of the song, whilst bass and drums are predators within the magnetically spiced triumph. Across track there are glimpses of bands like Pantera, Bloodsimple, and Overkill, but only whispers in a sound which leaps out like a beast and incites body and emotions with tempestuous majesty.

Roll on New Age of Old Ways

Faceless Ghost is available from March 2nd and New Age of Old Ways on April 27th via Mascot

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RingMaster 02/03/2015

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Bonz – Broken Silence

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With Stuck Mojo deeply entrenched in the passions maybe it is no surprise that Broken Silence, the debut album from BONZ, immediately felt like an old friend returning to stir up trouble and the passions. Led by the original frontman of the former, and welcomingly dosed with all the recognisable tones, raps, and roars vocalist Bonz offered in the major protagonists sculpting and ferociously driving rap metal forward, band and album swiftly set a lively spark in the passions. Around him though the sounds offer plenty more than an echo of former glories; twisting rap, nu, and southern bred groove metal into one riveting and ridiculously contagious proposition. Think Stuck Mojo, Body Count, and (Hed) PE in a passionate collusion with The Union Underground and you get a colour of the creative blaze of BONZ. It is familiar in many ways but still dramatically fresh and best of all, ridiculously anthemic and instinctively compelling.

The band came about after Bonz played with ex-Primer 55 guitarist/bassist Curt Taylor in Killer in the Workplace in 2009. With the band coming to an end in 2011, the pair wanted to continue working together and BONZ was the outcome. Early demos suggested something tasty was brewing, a realisation now openly unleashed on the world through Broken Silence. Last year saw the band sign with Germany’s Eternal Sound Records and the creating of the band’s imposing full-length debut, showing in the words of their bio that “the “Mouth of Mojo” is indeed back in fine form.”

If any album in recent times has started with as potent and irresistible a stomp as Broken Silence we missed it. Opener Sinister Grin is pure virulence, from the wonderful earthy lone bassline which sets it in motion, the song is the seeds to addiction. It is almost rockabilly in tone at the start but just the simple lure into the furnace of rap metal tenacity which explodes upon the listener soon after. Grooves are as immediate in appearance and captivation as the distinctive provocations of Bonz, their united bait framed by the punchy rhythmic trap laid by drums and bass. Body and thoughts are increasingly seduced as the track romps with anthemic fury and enterprise, every lyrical spit and tangy hook the inescapable kindling to a fiery ardour for the punk infested 4PAN1Ttempest.

Such a powerful gripping entrance was bound to be followed by a slight dip, not that Comes Over Me gives it much room to breed with its mustier breath and heavier rock infused protestation. Slim but strong diversity from the vocals adds to its inviting drama whilst the guitars scrub up a great dusty atmosphere to the riled encounter. It keeps the potency of the album high as does the excellent Godshine which follows. A thick vine of southern rock flaming veins the track, infusing the stormy attitude and intensity of the encounter with a sonic colour which flames nicely against the infectious vocal conflict.

The album’s title track like the opener is baiting and binding ears and imagination within seconds, this time with another delicious toxic groove which is belligerently unrelenting in its persistence. It cores the track from start to finish, shifting its shade of colour only as Bonz almost duels vocally with the listener. The rhythmic stomp of the track is just as gripping and incendiary, beats punching ears with a middleweight’s consistency and accuracy as bass and guitar prowl and flirt respectively. There is no denying you cannot escape the Stuck Mojo comparisons but it is hard to remember that band finding the same depth of swagger and epidemic like temptation in as many songs on a single release as already shown upon Broken Silence.

30 Seconds To Swat is a punk metal brawl, the bass providing a dirty groove whilst riffs blister and inflame the air with a budding fury. Not as unique as other tracks but a thoroughly absorbing incitement to neck muscles, the song makes way for the exceptional stalking that is Take It Personal. Bass and riffs prowl around the listener, leery and combat ready. They do step back for the rap of Bonz though, the bass accompanying his vocal contention as beats equally slow their assault. It is going to erupt at some point of course and does in the ridiculously addictive chorus which has voice engaged in its call within one round of its rivalry. The track sets another pinnacle in the heady heights of the album, easily sparking thoughts that if live audiences bellow for one song it would be this mighty antagonist.

There is enough diversity to the album to make Broken Silence more than a rap metal revival, the great melodic charm and chant of Sour Diesel teasing with a bluesy groove and Insane Clown Posse like vocal sway whilst Bad News stamps and seduces with a feisty fusion of hard and melodic rock. Jared Gomes and Co come to mind during the song but equally a loud whisper of P.O.D. shows itself, both mere spices to the rock ‘n’ roll roar. Their pleasing successes are surpassed by the great punk causticity and dirty rock ‘n’ roll bellow of Bad Love, where essences of hardcore and melodically infested rapcore collide within the furious climate of the song.

Completed by a great live version of Take It Personal, it is easy to suggest Broken Silence will be sheer joy for fans of rap and nu metal, and for sure those of Stuck Mojo even as BONZ unravel their own identity with their debut. If you are looking for flaws, maybe not enough striking diversity to the delivery of Bonz could be offered, though why change something which works, and surprisingly the release never gets as nasty and spiteful in its anger as expected. When it is this much fun and thrilling though, it simply does not matter.

Broken Silence is available now via Pavement Entertainment/ Eternal Sound Records @ http://eternalsoundrecordsshop.bigcartel.com/product/ltd-cd-digi-pack-pre-order-bonz-broken-silence-ltd-cd-didi-pack-2015-release-date-13-02-2015

http://bonzband.com/

RingMaster 11/02/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from http://www.thereputationlabel.today

 

Cold Snap – World War 3

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It roars, it bellows, and it rages with all the spite found in a pit of venomous snakes, but most of all World War 3 provides a seriously mouth-watering treat to open up 2015’s metal offerings in blistering style. The explosive confrontation of Croatian band Cold Snap, the album is an imagination sparking tempest of groove metal infused with a very healthy dose of nu-metal and various other spicy strains of extreme provocations. It comes with slithers of familiar and recognisable moments and sounds which only add to the drama and pleasure found in its maelstrom of inventive and adventurous enterprise. If you are looking for your first bold purchase of 2015, then World War 3 is a major contender which will not disappoint.

Coming out of Varazdin, Cold Snap formed in 2003 and was quickly into their stride with increasingly impressing live shows which subsequently saw them play with the likes of Disturbed, Suicide Silence, Pro-Pain, Dead By April, Ektomorf and Unearth as well as playing festivals such as Metal Camp, Metal Fest, and Wacken Open Air. There has also been well-received releases increasingly pushing the band’s presence into broader attention, debut EP Mea Culpa of 3005 the forerunner of their albums Empty Promises and Perfection of 2008 and 2010 respectively. Following the departure of guitarist Vlado Soldatek last October, the foursome of vocalist Jan Kerekes, guitarist Leo Friscic, bassist Zoran Ernoic, and drummer Denis Roskaric has driven on with the release of the Tue Madsen produced World War 3 through Eclipse Records. It is an attention grabber from start to finish with the weaponry and ingenuity to awaken the attention and passions of metal fans around the world.

From the first breath of Straight to Hell, song and band are rampaging through ears and brewing up a keen appetite for what is on offer. Rhythms barge and riffs snarl over the senses, only stepping back slightly as the impressive vocals of Kerekes vent with narrative and eventful ferocity. Guitars and drums are soon back to throwing their muscles around though as the song flirts with essences of Mudvayne and Slipknot embroiled with those of American Head Charge. It is a formidable and addictively flavoursome mix given originality by the unpredictable invention and enterprise of Cold Snap. Raging and accusing as it opens up the album’s premise of looking at the ‘end of days’ we live in through every form of our lives, the song is a tremendous start swiftly emulated by the psyche revelry of Carnival. Exploring a (Hed) PE like fusion of groove and punk rap, the song smoulders with intimidating character, expelling furies of waspish grooves and sonic predation. It is a stunning encounter, stalking ears and thoughts with compelling craft and threatening intensity under the rhythmic slavery of Ernoic and Roskaric.

Friscic’s guitar is equally imposing and sonically inflammatory but even more skilled and adventurous within the following Rise Again and its Disturbed meets One Minute Silence stampede CLDS - 9038 cover - 1500of sound and enterprise. As in most songs, every passage and indeed moment comes with a subsequent twist in the flow and imagination of the incitement, here a sultry and tangy croon of guitar the respite in the tempestuous majesty of the aural protest.

The brief and warped rabidity of Unleash Me comes next to intrigue and excite as it leads the listener into the destructive heart of Monster, the unveiling of the danger portentously suggested in the first of the pair. The second track sways and challenges like a heady mix of Skindred, Devildriver, and Limp Bizkit, filtering their strengths into another uniquely gripping and seriously contagious storm of aggression and sound. Every second and aspect of the song ravages and seduces ears; stirring up even greedier appetite for the album, though that is something which applies to every track it is fair to say.

The much calmer atmosphere and thick provocative depths of Dead Guardian continues the diverse nature of the album, its sublime dark caress a gentle coaxing which increases in intensity and anger as the song proceeds to release its controlled but bile loaded roar. It relaxes again but only to start the compelling process all over again. With Kerekes increasingly impressive and extending the variety and adventure of his vocals, the track is a brew of enthralling emotions and antagonism leaving ears and thoughts engrossed and easy prey for the sensational brawl of Doomsday. Opening in a similar vein to how the previous song crooned the senses, it is soon a boiling vat of emotional hostility and raging sounds but psychotic enough to fluidly drop into deranged calm before a great bedlamic mix of various caustic styles. Another major highlight of the album it is matched by the might of Silent Killer, but only after the bewitching cyber haunting of instrumental Freedom has its moment to prey on the psyche and challenge the imagination. Silent Killer opens with riveting guitar bait before launching a Mudvayne seeded challenge vocally and sonically which in turn courts a rhythmic threat and anthemic tenacity spiced with Korn colouring. Again it has to be stated that for all the comparisons what emerges is something fresh, adventurous, and virulently infectious.

The final trio of songs all add to the increasingly impressive stature of the album, Court is Corrupted stepping up first with its venomously pungent bluster and creative rabidity. It is a growling provocateur, intent on enslaving the listener with bruising and vicious craft, something it definitely has no problem succeeding with. Chameleon seizes its chance next to rage across senses already softened elsewhere on the album. Juggling rhythms and rancorous vocals under a mesmeric sonic climate, it is soon throwing off its shackles to stomp belligerently and contagiously whilst establishing another pinnacle in the mountainous range of songs.

The closing My Emptiness unveils a final new twist in the album, its Palms whispered peace the calm before the storm of Machine Head hostility tempered by melodic metal tenacity. The song continues to shift and evolve across its eight minutes leaving ears blissful and thoughts captivated.

Wrapped in just as impressive artwork, World War 3 is a real treat from a band looking ready to stand boldly and confidently in the biggest spotlight of global metal.

World War 3 is available now via Eclipse Records @ http://www.eclipserecords.biz/brands/Cold-Snap.html

http://www.cold-snap.com/

RingMaster 13/01/2015

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Whitenoise – The Herd

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Sounding like a brawl waiting to happen The Herd, the latest EP from Israeli band Whitenoise, is a riot of rock ‘n’ roll which has no need of charm and measured persuasion to ignite the passions. Though not ground-breaking stuff, the three tracks making up the encounter rage and stomp with all the voracity and attitude you would wish from a bruising confrontation. It barges through ears, accosts the senses, and intimidates the imagination for a thoroughly agreeable and satisfying rampage.

Formed in 2004, the Tel-Aviv hailing Whitenoise was formed by four childhood friends whose parents were all immigrants from Soviet Russia and migrated to Israel in the early nineties. 2011 saw the release of their band’s debut EP New Breed, a year also finding the quartet co-headlining the Rock-Line festival in the city of Perm, Russia after Whitenoise won a 300 band contest. Backing their success up the following year by playing with Caliban on their 2012 Russia/Ukraine tour, the band set about recording The Herd in 2013 with its release coming towards the rear of last year. With lyrical inspiration coming from personal life experiences and exploring emotions such as anger, pain, depression, love and dreams, the release and its songs are abrasing and confrontational with a hunger and energy which is as magnetic as the sounds within.

Opener 4 AM is instantly coaxing with punchy beats and enticing riffs bound with slithers of what will emerge to be potent hooks. It is soon striding purposefully as vocals and guitars rage and coverflame respectively within the broadening rhythmic frame of the track. It maybe has a familiar and unsurprising canvas but over it the band creates a fiery and incendiary web of ideas and enterprise. It certainly comes with an air of something already known, but there is little predictable or unrewarding to what is a excitingly rowdy and inciting slab of dirty rock ‘n’ roll.

Second song Between The Lanes suffers a little by being sandwiched between two outstanding storms, the final song Near Life Experience as impressive as the first, but still rampages with a tenacity and anger which leaves ears and appetite wanting more. Spewing animosity and fury with every harsh riff, spill of vocal spite, and lingering groove, the track is a formidable and pleasing protagonist, though with the certainly skilled but uneasily lying melodic detour that the song takes it loses its grip. The solo is undeniably superbly sculpted and presented but for personal tastes feels out of place in this particular song, defusing its potency as a killer track.

The closing Near Life Experience has no such problem. The best track on the release it is a predatory prowling from its first breath as riffs and rhythms harass ears with pack like aggression and tenacity before finding a heavier and darker gait and shade to their character. That again is a mere moment in the passage of the song, the band subsequently swinging with a new anthemic and virulent tempting before repeating the whole carnal offering again. Locking death and groove metal with wonderfully unwholesome heavy rock, the track is a riveting and blistering stalking of the listener and easily the best moment on the impressive EP.

Whitenoise still feels like a band growing their sound but with tracks like those igniting The Herd; expect to hear of and from them in increasingly impressive terms from hereon in.

The Herd EP is available now @ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-herd-single/id919819109

http://whitenoise1.com

RingMaster 06/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Hellbent & Hammered – Death Rattle

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With far more deep rooted grooves than a wet weather race tyre and the torque to seriously send body and senses spinning, Death Rattle from UK metallers Hellbent & Hammered is a wake-up call for ears and attention to the band’s evolution and presence. Formed in 2004, the London quartet has certainly been through the usual obstacle bands come up against as almost perpetual loses and gains in the line-up create a turbulence to defeat most bands. Stability in that area has been found over the last three years or so and as the band’s outstanding and ferocious new EP reveals, Hellbent & Hammered has only relished in and flourished from that calm.

The band wears their inspirations on the sleeves of very note and viciously swinging groove it is fair to say but twists it into a rich flavour that appetites can only become greedy for. The accompanying press release cites Down, Lamb of God, and Clutch as a trio of references merging to fire up the band’s sound, and it really does sum up the potency and force of Death Rattle if not all the fury and raw enterprise fuelling each track on the encounter.

Since forming Hellbent & Hammered has been an acclaimed force on the live scene, blistering stages alongside the likes of Feed The Rhino, Godsmack, ANVIL, Godsized, Thunderhorse, Head-On, and Sons of Merrick along the way. Their groove metal has been an increasingly potent lure across the south of the UK from the start, but with the current line-up completed in 2011 when guitarist Junior Gouch linked up with vocalist Ryan Le Roux, bassist Dr. Jon Casey, and drummer Simon Bullock, the band has in a way shed a skin to their sound in creating an uncompromising and bordering on toxic strain of groove metal as evidenced powerfully by Death Rattle.

The EP’s title track opens up the seductive hostility, riffs and rhythms creating an imposing wall from its first breath before the first flirtatious groove entwines ears and appetite. There is Hellbent&H coverswagger not only to the increasingly tempting grooving but every mighty swing of Bullock, bassline of Casey, and the grizzled delivery of Le Roux. It is Pantera-esque in so many ways but with a blues toxin and the superb bait of Gouch’s inventive lures and craft, the song provides an invigorating freshness. The first predatory anthem of Death Rattle, the track stalks and overwhelms the passions with ease.

The gripping start is swiftly matched by Hung, Drawn & Quartered; the track showing a more merciful welcome for ears, if only by a hairs-breath, before turning out a relentless rapacious stride of abrasing riffs, crippling beats, and psyche searing grooves. As its predecessor, the song is inescapable in its anthemic tempting and the sonic binding of the imagination, whilst the searing solo of Gouch adds further toxic manna alongside a deliciously throaty stalking bassline which just lights the passions.

The gnarly yet beckoning tones of Le Roux hit the sweet spot too, and in third song All Consuming, which from another irresistible bass bred bait, launches a virulent and corrosive smog of torrential riffery and rhythmic slaughter, he unleashes a delivery of impressive grazing power and fury. The track itself is the most inventive on the release moving from a strong and appealing start into a fascinating cauldron of aggressive adventure and sonic spite.

The EP closes with Built That Way, a powerhouse of rhythmic muscle and sinew sculpted riffs roared over by Le Roux and the blazing enterprise of Gouch. It is an impassioned furnace of grooved causticity amidst a hurricane like energy, with plenty of inventive designs and melodic venom to ignite the imagination all over again.

The track is a tremendous end to a thoroughly thrilling release. There is a familiarity and originality to Death Rattle which aligns for the perfect recipe of grooved mayhem in undoubtedly one of our favourite propositions of the year. Hellbent & Hammered has found the spice to greater things going by their new incitement and the potential to sculpt plenty of major things ahead. A thunderous way to round off a great year of releases sent to us by Garry of SaN Pr, and we thank him for all his help and support, Death Rattle is a must for all groove and seriously anthemic metal fans

The Death Rattle EP is released on Monday 15th December through all digital stores.

http://www.hellbentandhammered.com/

RingMaster 11/12/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Soldierfield – Catharsis

 

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It has been a long timing coming, well it feels that way since the release of their acclaimed and outstanding EP Bury The Ones We Love in 2012, but now UK melodic metallers Soldierfield return with their highly anticipated debut album, Catharsis. It is a release which like so many others we had high expectations of and fierce hunger for, and it is fair to say that the tempestuous rampage suffices all wants and much more. Simultaneously continuing where the previous release left off and forging new expansive landscapes for their songwriting and feverishly flavoured sound, the quintet has created an incendiary device of enterprise and raw force to set the British metal scene ablaze.

Soldierfield was formed in late 2011 when guitarist Andy Trott linked up with bassist Simon Priestland to work on and unleash songs the former had been working on. Deciding to put out some demos the pair pulled in vocalist Leigh Oates (Order Of Voices, Rise To Addiction) who expelled his lyrical and vocal prowess upon the tracks. The first song unveiled instantly sparked a buzz in the underground scene and within the industry which led to the band signing up with Metalbox Recordings. Subsequently the Bury The Ones We Love EP was uncaged with the line-up completed by guitarist Steve Wray (Rise To Addiction, BLAZE), who produced the EP and now the album, and drummer Jeff Singer (Paradise Lost, Kill II This, China Beach, BLAZE). Continuing to reap the richest essences of numerous styles and flavours to infuse into their own invention, Soldierfield, with Wayne Banks (Joe Lynn Turner, Sabbat, BLAZE, Messiah’s Kiss) now on bass, raise their and British metal’s bar again with the impatiently waited for Catharsis.

The album is an aural emprise which immediately ignites a fire in ears and emotions, but proceeds to unveil more depths and potency over time to perpetually seduce the imagination. From their first offering, The Light, band and album enthrals and trespasses through ears into the passions with virulent and creative ferocity. Theirs is a sound which sounds deceptively familiar but equally wholly fresh and distinctive, no more so epitomised than the opening track. Seemingly entering from where final track The Path on the EP left off, The Light is a bridge between and gateway into a new chapter and realm of adventure. Its dawning presence is a restrained and melodic tempest which draws near with every sonic agitation before exploding into a predacious and rhythmically intensive stride. Riffs flame and flirt with their enticing whilst bass and drums provide an enslaving bait, it all capped by the outstanding sandy toned vocals of Oates. As potent and expressive as ever, straight away there seems a thicker impassioned drive to his tones which is matched by the carnivorous riffery and colourful designs cast by the guitars. As rampant as it is resourceful, the track is a stunning start which with moments of Manic Street Preachers like persuasion has the appetite drooling.Soldierfield - Catharsis - Artwork

The following Beautiful Lie rigorously strides the same plateau, sonic intrigue seeping from every guitar spawned note as intimidation drives every swinging beat. There is an instant drama to the song which is ushered in through the throaty basslines of Banks and stretched by the vocal tenacity of Oates and the acidic invention sculpted superbly by Trott and Wray. As its predecessor, the song offers for no definable reason a familiar face but is soon twisting its character and presence with riveting craft to leave ears and thoughts engrossed before both The Only War and Burn Bright ignite their impressive persuasions. The first of the two opens with melodic elegance and beauty across a peaceful atmosphere, the guitars painting an enthralling picture before the more rugged landscape of the song is revealed and painted by the impassioned vocals of Oates. Flirting with thrash and groove metal, the song is soon aflame with gripping enterprise from the guitars and prowling rhythmic tempting from Banks and Singer, a mix emulated by its successor within a far more savage and inhospitable atmosphere. The track merges extremes of texture and attack with fluidity and thrilling resourcefulness, raging and seducing within a just as agitated and varied sonic climate.

The pair of Monochrome, an exceptional track which exploits a horde of fierce and inflammatory styles to create another major pinnacle on the album, and the bewitching Ghosts sublimely spark hungry waves of pleasure and satisfaction through ears and emotions. The first truly encapsulates the band’s invention, a tempestuous fusion of varied sounds and flavours which is as adept and majestic brawling with or seducing the listener, whilst the second is an unpredictably transfixing offering which needs more time than others to reveal all its qualities but emerges just as handsomely accepted and devoured. This can also be applied to the dramatic presence and evolving creative narrative of New Religion and the enchanting gentle croon of the album’s title track where Oates again reinforces his vocal prowess.

The next up Nothing Left springs with the same melody fuelled lure as the last song but is soon shrugging of restraints to emerge as a voracious and turbulently volatile storm which only feeds the greed surrounding the release, especially when it still shares its fury with moments of unbridled beauty. The ferocious treat is replaced by the album’s closing track, the mesmeric Cut the Ties, a song blending wiry and seductive melodies with sinister basslines and breath-taking vocals; the track a stunning finale to a superb album.

Catharsis confirms all the early thoughts and assumptions about the potential of Soldierfield and much more, with only the fact that some songs do not linger in memory and thoughts as potently as they should and deserve a slight puzzle. Nevertheless the album is still one of the year’s major highlights and company very hard to tear oneself away from.

Catharsis is available now digitally and on CD via Metalbox Recordings @ http://metalboxrecordings.com/shop/index.php?route=product/product&path=59&product_id=57

www.soldierfieldband.co.uk

RingMaster 18/11/2014

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