The Creeping Ivies – Ghost World

The  Creeping Ivies

Taking senses and imagination on another psyche ripping helter skelter of raw and sonically sculpted rock ‘n’ roll, Scottish duo The Creeping Ivies unveil their second album Ghost World and prove themselves yet again to be one of the most exciting provocateurs of primal incitement. The new full-length from the band is a riotous seduction of garage punk and naked rock ‘n’ roll with plenty of spices from psychobilly to punk rock. It also sees the band at its most potent and insatiably virulent yet, the release loaded with deliciously caustic and masterfully magnetic, to steal from the title of one of their earlier songs, buzzbombs.

The Creeping Ivies consists of Becca Bomb providing piercing, coarsely sirenesque vocals and raw sonic guitar vivacity and Duncan Destruction who brings heavy thumping, rapaciously intruding beats to the thrilling equation. Their union is a simultaneously primitive and precisely sculpted enslaving of the senses, one which from day one intrigued and wildly enthralled. First release the Rock N Roll Party EP in 2011 stirred up attention and emotions with its synapse searing acidity and voracious rioting, that an ever present trait expanding with greater potency on the following Ghost Train EP and debut album Stay Wild, both in 2012. Inciting audiences just as dramatically with their live performances, which has seen them share a stage with the likes of  Viv Albertine of The Slits and Vic Godard & Subway Sect, the stature of The Creeping Ivies has increased constantly within the underground scene, their sound recalling many influences but undeniably unique to them. Last November the release of the double A-sided single What Would Joey Ramone Do? / Ramona Wolf teased and tempted as the band showed a continuing to evolve invention to their sonic exploits and imagination. It certainly led to the anticipation and expectations of their next album to intensify. The two tracks hinted at the possible magnificence of Ghost World but it is fair to say that its haunting intrusive delights have emerged as a far greater and dangerous triumph than hoped.

The Dundee pair open up the adventure with the album’s title track. Instantly a haunted caress of guitar glances over ears with a caustic kiss coverin tow as well as a rub of riffs and the joining tub thumping beats of Duncan. Immediately enticing in its noir lit breath and grazing ambience, the track pulsates as it worms its way under the skin laying irresistible bait for the entrance of Becca’s vocals. As ever her voice holds a definite Wanda Jackson meets Siouxsie Sioux texture and magnetism to it, intensity in her delivery searing flesh and air as she and the song hit their stride. With an addiction spawning groove and the delicious occasional blaze of harmonica from guest Homesick Aldo, the track takes little time to secure full submission for its tempting whilst showing the evolution in sound and songwriting maturity poised to consume the senses  in hand with the expected sonic feverishness of the band.

The following entangling chords of The Bridge provide an instant variation to the toxicity of the album; its opening fifties bred melodic teasing charming the listener before thrusting sinew packed beats and the wonderfully torrid vocal tones of Bomb into the appealing recipe. The hook which drew the first spark of ardour as the song started continues to vein the stomp whilst a resonating shimmer to the sound engulfs and exhilarates the senses. As with all their songs, the premise is uncomplicated and minimalistic but always thick in presence and invention leading to fully textured and imposing encounters.

The intimidating shadows of The Creeps consumes attention next, their threat and imposing provocation sizeable but defused by an excellent revelry of keys, vocal wails, and the urgent dance of hooks and harmonies. Short, sweet, and irresistible, the song is then put in its appealing place by Love Kills, a brilliant blend of sixties pop, garage punk, and rockabilly energy. Imagine The Shangri-Las and The Cramps in a saucy romantic triangle with Australian band Valentiine and you have the brilliant Love Kills. The track sways and romps with revelry and mischievousness to cast a perfect raw pop song on the passions.

Ramona Wolf just sounds better with each encounter since its single release last November. It’s almost spatial opening ambience paves the way for the vocal seduction of Becca to spread a temptress like devilry, a sonic medusa with a delivery writhing with searing harmonies and enslaving qualities. Musically the song is a repetitive narrative, punchy beats and scalding guitar probing and grazing respectively with singular intent beneath the harsh atmosphere of the tale. It is also quite glorious as is the next up Dream Baby Dream. Providing irrepressible flirting from the sax of Andrew Pattie within its scintillating fifties pop ravaging and punk seeded ravishing, the song stomps over and challenges the senses for another unruly treat, Bo Diddley meets Helen Shapiro at the home of The Trashmen.

Both Trippin’ Out and Haunted High School finger the passions in their individual ways next, the first a heart rapping rampage of jabbing beats and scarring riffs skirting the sinister drama. It is a tale of ghostly enterprise and inescapable rapacious shadows with a heartbeat which resonates through the bone and core of the evocative tale whilst melodic acidity and vocal colouring courts its intent. The excellent fierce smouldering is soon exceeded by What Would Joey Ramone Do?, a song which sculpts a raising of the spirits of Gene Vincent and Lux Interior with that of the song’s namesake. The track provides all you expect and much more, the Cochran/ Poison Ivy Rorschach like mix of guitar sound with the impossible contagious punk stomp of the song an epidemic for the passions.

Arguably the band saves the best till last, though every listen offers a different favourite. Forever Leather fuses sixties girl pop with a raw voracity, the song like the punk infected offspring of The Crystals and The Stooges with a heady dose of Siouxsie menace. It is a scintillating end to an outstanding album. The Creeping Ivies continue to impress as they evolve and push their boundaries, doing so without losing any of the elements which made them an unbridled addiction certainly for us since their early days. Whether their sound will ever find the major spotlight it deserves is impossible to say, such its uniqueness and undiluted rawness, but it will definitely recruit the most passionate and feverish passions from an increasingly growing legion of fans we suggest, it just needs the opportunity to make that infectious strike.

http://thecreepingivies.com/

http://thecreepingivies.bandcamp.com/

10/10

RingMaster 24/03/2014

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

Sparrow & The Workshop – Murderopolis

hi_res_sparrowEDIT

Sparrow and the Workshop is one of those bands that music always needs, a temptation which is as beautiful as it is shadowed and as expansive as it is intimate. Previous albums, the debut Crystals Fall of 2010 and Spitting Daggers the following year, marked the Scottish band as melodic entrepreneurs of imaginative weaves fusing indie folk and rock pop, songwriters creating rich and emotive escapades soaked in aural colour and resourceful enterprise. The Glasgow trio return with third album Murderopolis, a release which explores their invention for greater and deeper adventure whilst sculpting a kaleidoscope of passion tingling elegance. It is a seduction of evocative textures and mesmeric caresses which quite simply is rather special!

The band consists of Jill O’Sullivan (vocals, guitar, violin), Gregor Donaldson (drums, vocals), and Nick Packer (bass guitar, electric slide guitar, basstard), a threesome which have not been strangers to acclaim certainly since their debut album. The name of Sparrow & The Workshop has equally been wrapped in hungry responses for their live performances which across the time has seen them play alongside the likes of Brian Jonestown Massacre, British Sea Power, Idlewild, Broken Records, Sivert Hoyem, The Lemonhead, Thee Oh Sees and more, as well as numerous festivals to great success. Released via independent label Song, by Toad Records, Murderopolis strolls through another potent plateau which matches the virulent seduction of previous album Spitting Daggers, whilst walking further diverse adventures.

The band arguably unleashes their greatest shadows at the start of the album, though those dark tints are always teasing the senses MurderopolisHiResand thoughts throughout the album musically and lyrically. Opener Valley of Death is a smouldering triumph, a track which instantly sets the release into the strongest wash of acclaim. Bold yet reserved beats and moody melodic provocation pokes the ear first, opening up attention for the as ever sirenesque tones of O’Sullivan. Her voice is one which seduces and caresses the senses but has a nip in its caress which allows darkness to play with the enchanted emotions already inspired. Like a sun in the skies of the dramatic she guides the listener into a warm soak of colour fuelled melodies and harmonies for the chorus, the track then returning to that provocative hypnotic enticement which started things off for the verses. Those dark and expressive leads have the same kind of wanton visual and emotive sway that marked the opening credits to eighties UK TV show Tales Of The Unexpected, a tempting yet menacing seduction. It is a powerful and riveting track, a song with a sixties call to its breath and vocals, which alone seem like a mix of Helen Shapiro, Kristin Hersh, Chantal Clare, and Debbie Harry.

From such a potent start the album retains its compelling grip with the following Darkness, another shadowed call for the passions which sows the seeds with an opening throaty bass beckoning and reined in male vocal chants. It is a slowly prowling encounter, the song walking with intent around thoughts with lone strands of melodic taunts riling up the appetite further. With a touch of The Passions to it the song widens its lure with the again excellent vocals of O’Sullivan before sealing the lustful deal with heated flames of soaring vocals and acidic mastery, crescendos which ignite the fullest appetite. Like the first, the track explores the depths of light and dark with breath-taking craft and imagination leaving an already awoken hunger for more seized by rabid urgency.

The album continues to show it is as diverse as it is absorbing, starting with the stunning Odessa, a song as different to the opening pair as it is a continuation of flawed light and emotional incitement. A melancholic mesh of vocal, keys, and dark strings gently wash through the ear at first before a strong pause makes way for an equally rich narrative of guitar and rhythms which turn up the heat a touch more. It is a vibrant passion sculpted song which haunts thoughts with classy enterprise and emotional exploration, its latent energy brewing up and exploring the limits of the impressive songwriting, its realisation becoming more intense and magnetic the further towards its fiery climax the band drive.

Through the likes of the first single from the album Shock Shock, a meeting of The Pixies and The Shangri-Las in a folk rock atmospheric haunting wrapped in a sonic senses courting ambience, and the tantalising Water Won’t Fall with its scenic paint and crystalline touch, the band raise new emotive adventures whilst the title track is a noir tinted flame of seventies spiced melodic rock and Wicker Man laced folk which transforms the landscape of the album into a new distinct dance of mystique.

Released the same day as the album, May 27th, new single The Faster You Spin sets another pinnacle for the album. Another song rippling with an almost predatory intent through heavier melodic rock feistiness, it conjures the strongest contagion with searing flames of sonic and melodic… well eroticism seems the best word to describe it, complete with an ardour inducing addictiveness to its suasion.

Further songs in the scintillating Avalanche of Lust with its wonderful bass itch and the deliciously incendiary Flower Bombs, a song with an array of bewitching infectious climaxes around slow post punk taunting ingenuity, push the boundaries of the album and listener’s greed yet again whilst the closing pair of The Glue That Binds Us and Autumn to Winter leave an irresistibly effective temptation to start the whole emotive course of triumph again.

Murderopolis is a scintillating release from a band which walks beauty and darkness like no other. If Sparrow and the Workshop have yet to guide you through your and their invigorating passions than this album is the perfect introduction.

www.sparrowandtheworkshop.co.uk

9/10

RingMaster 26/05/2013

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