Nine Miles South – Self Titled EP

Nine Miles South promo_RingMaster Review

It is proving to be a rather exciting year for UK rockers Nine Miles South which is coming to a thrilling head with the release of their self-titled debut EP and a couple of big shows, all sure to confirm that their groove loaded southern rock ‘n’ roll is ready to awaken the broadest attention. Their three track release is an invigorating and exciting slab of resourcefully varied hard rock; heavy and contagious, creatively aggressive and addictive, it has body and appetite on red alert by track one, seduced by the third and though it weaves plenty of familiar sounds and textures into its persuasion, the EP just hits the sweet spot that lies within all rock fans.

Nine Miles South was founded by Danish bred Seb Mikkelsen, the band forming after the vocalist/guitarist had moved to the UK from his homeland. Based in Guildford and with a line-up completed by guitarist Jon Antony, bassist Andy Sleigh, and drummer David Wilson, Nine Miles South took little time in awakening strong support and awareness through their tenacious live presence. Shows with bands such as Kobra And The Lotus as well as their own gigs and strong festival appearances have marked the band out leading to good radio play. After a couple of recently highly successful London shows and ahead of the band playing Hard Rock Hell in Wales on November 13th with amongst many, Black Label Society, UFO, Helloween, Pat Travers, and Gun, and also supporting Skinny Molly at the North Devon Arena in Ilfracombe on November 18th, Nine Miles South release their first EP, an easy to suspect spark to increasing and eager attention.

NMS FRONT COVER EPP_RingMaster Review   Produced by Samuel Burden, the EP opens with The Reckoning, a mighty anthem for ears and emotions. A slightly reserved beginning cups ears first, a sultry climate of guitar and melody backed by the vocal twang of Mikkelsen swift enticement which only grows more gripping as thick fisted rhythms join the increasing energy and roar of the song. It is still not in top gear but casting an inescapable anthem for body and voice which only blossoms into virulence as grooves twist and entwine the psyche and hooks lurk in very corner and evolution of the outstanding song. As suggested the overall sound has a recognisable air but it only adds to the drama and potency of the tempting, especially which sixth gear is finally unleashed for a boisterous finale.

The excellent start is backed well by Leave Me Be, another making its entrance on a gentle melody from the guitar whilst quietly brewing a more intensive character which erupts soon after. A more emotively coloured and controlled stroll, the bluesy track spins a weave of melodic and vocal expression wrapped in low key but pungent grooves, these further punctured by firm rhythms. The bass of Sleigh has a great growl whilst the guitars of Antony and Mikkelsen create a croon of enterprise to match the resourceful vocal tones of the latter, backed well by Antony and Sleigh. Without quite matching the heights and irresistibility of its predecessor, the song has ears and attention riveted before Fingernails brings the release to a rousing close.

The third track has the imagination drifting off to dusty, country blues rock lands within seconds, grooves and riffs instantly sculpting a southern seeded canvas to lose oneself in, before shadowed rhythms lined with spiky beats and grooved invention build tantalising scenery. Imagine a mix of Bad Company, Down, and The Bastard Sons and you get a whiff of the excellent climax to one thickly enjoyable encounter.

The last few months has seen a new wind of attention and buzz around Nine Miles South which can only get bolder and louder with the release of their first EP. It is rock ‘n’ roll with a twang and very easy to suggest you go get some.

The Nine Miles South EP is available from September 7th

Pete Ringmaster 07/09/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Stuntman Mike – Triangles

stuntman mike pic

UK alternative rock band Stuntman Mike has brewed a potent rising reputation for their vibrant sound since forming around three years ago, a certain trigger coming with the release of debut song Triangles. Following on from the keen promise of the single Blackout Revolvers released at the tail of last year, the trio from Glasgow now unleash their debut album, also called Triangles, to make a strong and enjoyable statement about a band finding their creative and enterprising feet. The release offers a collection of accomplished and passionate songs which leaves an eager appetite for their persuasion in place. The album it is fair to say is not one stretching the boundaries of uniqueness for the genre but certainly adds a fresh and heart bred spice.

Taking inspiration from the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, Black Sabbath, Kasabian, The Police, and Queen into their ideas and organic sound, the trio of vocalist Scott Hetherington, guitarist Billy Mulholland, and drummer/backing vocalist Affy Ahmad have earned an impressive reputation live which has included shows alongside the likes of Kassidy, The Dykeenies, The Damned Things, Gun, Barry Hyde (The Futureheads) and the Virgin Marys. Their previous self-released singles have also garnered great support and acclaim with the song Secret Forces winning Rock Recording of the Year at the Scottish New Music Awards. Continuing to be passionately DIY, the band is primed to brand a deeper mark with the album, an evocatively fuelled release recorded with famed Scottish producer Stuart McRedie (The Fratellis, Pete Doherty, The Dykeenies, Codeine Velvet Club).

Coming in new to the band, it has to be said their name is not the most inviting for some reason but that is soon forgotten as the 1098022_623813610973427_2105731101_nalbum’s opening track Buffalo confidently strolls up to the ear. Crisp beats and fiery melodic guitar teases immediately draw in attention whilst the brewing intensity and excellent vocals add further potent persuasion. It is not long before a Manic Street Preachers feel emerges from within the song, a flavour which with the band’s own invention makes for a sizzling and impressive invitation. Hooks continue to scythe a deep lure in the imagination whilst sonic hues stand side by side with the delivery of Hetherington to incur greater temptation upon the passions. New ground is not being laid with the song but satisfaction is undoubtedly thick in its presence.

The following Great Exploitations with its fizzing electronic spices and vocal harmonics finds a Muse tint to its magnetic temptation. The stomping core of the song leads the emotions on a heady venture beneath the continually shifting and exploring melodic weave and anthemic breath to forge an encounter which like its predecessor just lifts and ignites the appetite and passions. It continues the impressive start which is not quite matched by next up Modern Glory and Promise, both songs lacking the spark which marked the first pair. Neither lack craft and imagination though, the first having a Mind Museum like emotive energy to its narrative and the second an infectious if not quite tightly griping call to its encroaching cloud of sonic intensity and provocative adventure. Taken alone the tracks leave a lingering impression but on the album pale against the surrounding opening twosome and next up We Say Fire. This song is a sinew sculpted confrontation with a feisty swagger to match. Not neglecting the melodic flames and skill the band already unveils on the album, the track is a storm of rapaciousness and restraint, the extremes brought in a seamless and compelling alignment.

Through the likes of Cartel with its broody guitar and bass probing and the tantalising Roses and Razors, the band continue to hold thoughts and attention in their direction but into its second half the album loses that fire which earlier songs seduced with. Again though these and tracks like Ashes and Champagne Wolves are never less than pleasing and enjoyable in their company, just not lingering once departed.

Closing with the enterprising romp of Kingdom to provide a strong finish to its enjoyable presentation, Triangles marks out Stuntman Mike as a band to keep an eye on. The album does not reach the peaks found by some of its tracks consistently enough across its length to fire up the passions intensely but with all songs soaked in promise and adventure it makes a healthy base for the band to spring from.

http://www.stuntmanmike.co.uk

7.5/10

RingMaster 29/09/2013

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Velvet Star: All Or Nothing

If All Or Nothing the new EP from UK rockers Velvet Star is like for us your first introduction to the band then hold tight for one high energy heart bursting ride of pure rock n roll. It is an adrenaline rush to leave one breathless and exhilarated. Whether the release offers anything openly new is arguable but it really does not matter when the songs making up the EP are so deeply satisfying and invigorating.

The quartet from Yorkshire began in 2007 with brothers Danny (vocals) and Corey(bass) Jones. The following years saw plenty of line-up changes as well as their well received debut album In The Face Of Vanity through Rocksector Records. Featuring on the cover CD of Classic Rock as well as playing across the UK alongside the likes of Faster Pussycat, The Treatment, Star Rats, GUN, and Vains of Jenna to name a few, has also marked the rise of the band to date, something the new release will surely take to greater places.

Spring of this year saw another change with the addition of guitarists Mewsy (Ex SilverJet) and Robbie G (Ex Slash Vegas) to the band alongside the brothers and drummer Ginna, as Velvet Star set in motion the beginning of All or Nothing. Recorded alongside Matt Elliss (Black Spiders), the EP finds the band returning bigger, mightier, and with an increased determination and passion, the songs themselves the open proof.

The release opens the riotous fun with Bring It On, a thumping attitude driven feast of snarling bass riffs and scything guitar strikes. An immediate bruising friend to take on all comers, the track has the pulse racing and militancy flaring from its combative energy and fiery melodic guitar streaks of sound. With muscles bulging and chest fully extended, the infectious rampage just ignites the passions in a storm of insatiable and rewarding pure rock n roll, something the very best releases always manage to do.

From such an impressive and triumphant start things actually get even better, the release finding elevated plateaus track after track. The following Crash & Burn is a greedy heavy footed gem, a blistering stomp sounding like a mix of Buckcherry, Dope, and Marilyn Mansion wrapped in a healthy piece of Trucker Diablo aggressive energy.  It has a slower swagger than the opener but a scorching groove which captivates the imagination with wanton ease. If listening to the time bomb of contagion your toes, feet, limbs, and heart are not in motion with its stroll… then call the paramedics, you may be at deaths door, such its irresistible lure.

It is hard to find any flaw with the songs or release, nor the inventive songwriting and skilled delivery, other than there is only four songs, greed taking over as the EP boils the senses persistently. Glad You’ve Gone is a great blues soaked slab of rock majesty, the over catchy chorus and magnificent guitar work from Mewsy and Robbie G manna from rock heaven whilst the vocals just glow and the rhythms seize and lift passions higher .

The closing Overrated without doubt takes top honours, the punk n roll rampage an unstoppable juggernaut of feisty intent and breathtaking energy. Impossibly infectious, the track takes full control of voice and body let alone passion as it refuses to leave until you are joining in with its unbridled enthusiasm and siren heart. Midway through a totally unexpected break into a quite quirky moment which one would expect from a Faith No More, bursts free. It appears from nowhere and departs just as simply but works wonderfully as the mischief of the band leaves a final wink.

All Or Nothing is simply brilliant and Velvet Star one of the great new pleasures for The RingMaster Review this year, make them one of yours too is our only advice.

www.facebook.com/velvetstarband

RingMaster 25/10/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Self Titled: Defaced

With the greatly impressive song Mr Nobody a constant presence on the daily playlist here and recently featured on The Bone Orchard podcast from The Reputation Radio Show, the anticipation for the debut album from UK rock band The Self Titled was an eagerly growing itch which only the release could alleviate. Sometimes such eagerness ends in disappointment such the expectations placed upon something but with Defaced, the band not only matched but easily surpassed those hopes. The album is a bruising slab of rock power brought with quality craft and invention. It has no pretence towards or delusions of breaking down boundaries but if there has been a better and more exhilarating collection of pure rock n roll tracks it is hard to bring them to mind over the past year with only the Trucker Diablo album able to match what The Self Titled have unleashed.

From Kent the quintet of vocalist Mark Campbell, guitarists Darren Towner and Dan Wright, bassist Steve Hobbs, and Paul Brander on drums, has become one of the most prolific and sought after bands across the UK, their dynamic stage performances leading them to supporting the likes of Kobra and the Lotus, Forever never and Jezabel Deva and thrilling festivals alongside bands such as Status Quo, The Damned, and Gun. Defaced was due to be recorded in April of 2011 but such the demand for them on the live circuit the band had to be put it back due to lack of time to give it the attention it deserved. Now they have been able to find that space and have unveiled an album which is deeply rewarding and pleasing. One doubts the band would ever put out something rushed or substandard but the album is of such might it proved the decision to wait was correct. Last year also saw the band lined up to sign with Blaze Bayley Recordings, the label set up by the man himself and would have been one of his first signings but things as happens did not quite work out and the band decided not to follow that link up.

The Self Titled has a sound which ignites all the best elements of rock and metal to combine them into a feisty force of infectious and compulsive sounds. There is at times a trash tendency which reminds of latter day Metallica but the Americans for all their good songs have never excited as much on their recent albums as the Brits easily do on Defaced. The album is not only impressive in its sound and songwriting but in the extremely high consistency from the opening triumph Soul Control through to the closing piece of might The Silence. The opener emerges on a sonic scraping of the ear to immediately explode in to a riotous surge of busy and hungry riffs and eager rhythms. The guitars flash and thrust with dramatic energy and the bass of Hobbs is a prowling brew of delicious contempt, whilst the vocals of Campbell with admittedly a more than slight Hetfield tone rasp and draw the lyrics perfectly. The song is an immense and undeniable start.

From here on in its simply impressive track after track, the likes of the following Twisted with its incisive rhythms from Brander alongside the mesmeric guitar play and the insatiable Stomp leaving one breathless and eager for more without reservation. The second of these two is a blistering storm of imaginative melodic rock and greedy riffs which is irresistible. If infectiousness could be bottled this track would be its advertising soundtrack, a nonstop exercise in perfect rock n roll.

Evert track is a highlight on Defaced but there is always a soft spot for My Nobody. The song within seconds lights up the ear with guitar and bass beckoning as irresistible as the vocals are brooding. It is another rampaging riot upon the senses with everything about it instinctively siren like, though the most muscular one you are likely to meet. With jabbing beats, bustling riffs, and brewing atmosphere building up to incendiary and wonderfully concussive crescendos it is one of the best songs unveiled this year.

The rest of the album though does not ever pale against the song with those previously mentioned and songs like the inventive Warped and the final song The Silence a quality match. The first is a clever blend of teasing grooves and again irrepressibly infectious riffs with intelligent provocative atmospheres and ingenuity, especially in the unexpected aside mid song. The last track is brings an outstanding close to the album to rival the outstanding start. The song bustles and presses the ear with an inciting air and power to leave one drained yet desperate to dive back in to the album right away.

    Defaced is truly outstanding and though there was a belief it would be good it swept those aside with something far more impressive in stature and quality. UK rock and metal has never been healthier with The Self Titled leading the way.

http://www.theselftitled.com

Tune into The Bone Orchard as it brings choice cuts from Defaced over the weeks ahead

RingMaster 26/06/2012

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