Tunabunny – PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr

PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr is the new and fifth album from US Transcendental Dance Poppers Tunabunny, a huge adventure which sees the Athens, Georgia hailing quartet at their most poppy, darkest, experimental, and compelling. A double album breaching 28 imagination stoking tracks, it is a kaleidoscope of sound; no track like any other or pretty much any offering from the band to date, and a carousel of creative drama which pushes the listener into places they might not know exist let alone have contemplated.

Apparently PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr is “structured as a song-by-song response to The Beatles’ White Album” and through its songs explores themes such as surveillance, futility, alchemy and winter, metamorphosis and anger whilst its fourth side features a twisting song cycle about motherhood; from pregnancy to birth, through postpartum emotional desolation, to the rebirth of self. Whatever their inspiration, the album’s songs challenge and arouse physically, mentally, and emotionally ensuring you get a full and thrilling workout with the foursome of Mary Jane Hassell, Scott Creney, Brigette Adair Herron, and Jesse Stinnard.

Rather than do our usual track by track look, such its bulging size, we are going to pluck the moments which ignited the imagination most forcibly but be assured barely a moment passes within the whole release without making a potent and appealing impact. From the opening atmospherically sinister Cartesian Theater, a track which appears like an intro but is so much more, Tunabunny set the speakers and passions on fire with Incinerate. A recent single, the track is glorious; a slice of indie pop which has the head bobbing, feet shuffling, and ardour brewing within its first round of seduction. Adding one’s own breath is inevitable to a sublime chorus, the vocals a flirtatious beauty matched in temptation by the gentle swing of the sounds cradling their charm.

There is no better moment within the album but plenty of times rival the height of the superb encounter, the following Noise Problems a swift example with its post punk/new wave canter carrying a definite resemblance to eighties UK band The Passions. The stroll of the bass is as deeply appealing as the wiry jangle of the guitars, vocals again an inescapable magnetism in diversity and harmony whilst the song’s emerging discord is simply delicious.

The indie/psych pop of Seek Consequence is another major magnet; the swaying vocals siren-esque as darker hues brew and evolve behind their lyrical wiles until heatedly bubbling up with a drone like fever while Blackwater Homes rises up from a gentle melodic murmur into another virulently infectious and shadowed canter playing like a mix of Stevie Nicks and Pylon. Worryingly easy to be seduced by its haunting lures, and not for the first or last time fiercely tempting post punk bass bait, the track swiftly worms into the psyche.

The bass again grips the instincts within Oracle, its Psycho Killer like coaxing backed by shiny tendrils of guitar as vocals procrastinate; its success followed by the matching triumph of Start It where PiL meets The Breeders is a good hint to the track’s melodic post punk clamour. These tracks alone show the diversity within PCPPAIWJR, The Raincoats tinged pop clang of Nevermind The Cobblestones and the Slits scented monotone shuffle of Yellow Heart Is My Sky Sign further evidence, both tracks bringing fresh greed in a healthy appetite for the release.

A healthy addictiveness is spawned by the raw swing and charm of the boldly infectious The Way The World Works, the song a dulled yet sparkling gem in the album’s jewellery box of sound and another collusion of band and listener rarely matched outside of the album though within, the minimalistic pop of Me And Nancy, a track with an echo of The Cure on their very first outing, and the dark scuzz fuelled post punk of Pretending To Bend as well as the similarly styled but oh so different Count To Ten rise to the challenge.

There are tracks on the album which explore noise and its depths of suggestion, each inciting the imagination even when they barely grasp a handful of seconds in length; times which really test  but reward the listener’s ability to compose and interpret. With further moments of never less than thoroughly enjoyable and provocative adventure across the album, songs like It Could Be Something, the absorbing and inexplicable Shiftchanger featuring Jason Jackson Wellz, and Magic January all tantalising and enthralling, things are brought to a lengthy imposingly and enjoyable close with the fuzz pop clamour of I Thought I Caught It (With You).

As suggested, every track is a fresh and rewarding twist in the landscape of PCPPAIWJR, not one of them merely filling space and all firing up ears and imagination. Not for the first time Tunabunny has provided not only a real treat to mull over and enjoy, but another new plateau in their invention and imagination.

PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland JR is out now via HHBTM Records @ http://hhbtm.com/item.php?item_id=640 and https://tunabunny.bandcamp.com/album/pcp-presents-alice-in-wonderland-jr

https://www.facebook.com/Tunabunny/

Pete RingMaster 12/07/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Rat Fancy – Suck A Lemon EP

There is nothing artificial about the saccharine sound of Californian trio Rat Fancy or indeed excessively sweet yet a particular tooth is still a requirement for their sugary melodies and the intimate affability of their music. An instinctive almost sour look at life and its fake lures, often found in the Los Angeles climate the band springs from, ensures things never get too sickly and a similar underlying discordance to their music which ensures intrigue and unpredictability is a potent essence.  It all comes nicely together within Suck A Lemon; the band’s new captivating EP.

Consisting of vocalist/guitarist Diana Barraza (ex-Sweater Girls), guitarist/keyboardist Gregory Johnson, and drummer Gavin Glidewell and formed last year, Rat Fancy has already blessed 2017 with a trio of tracks via their Bandcamp. Each has been a fresh breeze of their shoegaze glazed indie pop now blowing even more eventfully within Suck A Lemon. Across the EP, the threesome resemble a fusion of eighties band Weekend and The Pixies with a light Belly-esque scent to it all; a mix emerging as something deceptively familiar yet distinct to Rat Fancy.

The release opens with I Can’t Dance To The Smiths Anymore and swiftly has ears drawn to its guitar jangle and the sweet tones of Barraza. Keys equally cast an amiable lure as the guitar weaves a magnetic twee toned melody; it all uniting in an infectiously lively serenade at times reminding of another British band from times past, The Freshies.

It is a bright and tempting start which is built upon by the more boisterous exploits of Five Fingers. Rhythms are a tenacious guide into the raw melody woven web of the song, everything from voice and sharp words to a wandering keys bred warble offering enticing hooks taking the EP to another level in no time.

It is a height backed up by the title track, the first of two versions found within Suck A Lemon. This first take has an energetic swing to its melodic carousel and bare sonic dance; a rawness which exposes all of their alluring attributes with honesty as Barraza’s vocals again captivate.

Beyond Belief is a gentle frank caress in sound and emotion with a smouldering melancholy in its charm while About You seduces with a Young Marble Giants like minimalism and beauty which with an emerging darker snarl to the guitars, takes best track honours. Both songs leave intrigue with a greedier focus; the second especially memorable even in its brief tenure of ears.

The EP closes with an equally impressive offering in a slower version of Suck A Lemon and boy does the already strong song blossom in this alternative guise. It is a siren of ears and imagination, so much more than simply a tempering of its earlier energy with Rat Fancy finding a richer presence and allure in its slimmer but more radiant variation.

Rat Fancy make a proper introduction to themselves with the Suck A Lemon EP, a thoroughly enjoyable encounter offering the promise of adventurously bright times ahead with the band.

The Suck A Lemon EP is out now through HHBTM Records and available @ https://ratfancy.bandcamp.com/album/suck-a-lemon and http://hhbtm.com/item.php?item_id=639

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Pete RingMaster 12/07/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Bastards Of Fate – Suck The Light Out

 

If Bethlem Royal Hospital had a house band at the time of its notoriously infamous period when it was better named as Bedlam, Bastards Of Fate would have fitted the role like a glove. The Roanoke, Virginia hailing outfit create a sound and incitement to which a description of lunacy is inevitable and inescapable yet, as evidenced in their new album Suck The Light Out, it is a skilfully woven and creatively deceptive aberration which borders on genius; a dementia ridden habitude obviously.

There are few bands which truly offer an adventure for mind and ears but Bastards Of Fate go even further; challenging and testing the listener, almost examining their tolerance and their psyche for unsettling creative behaviour but with something which is rich unrelenting fun. Though our introduction to the band thanks to our bud Mike at Crashing Through, the well-received releases of their previous two albums suggests the quintet has been sharing striking and daring proposals for a while, most likely from the first emerging breath in 2012 as a solo project for frontman Doug Cheatwood. Without experiencing either 2012’s Who’s A Fuzzy Buddy? or Vampires are Real and Palpable two years later, it is still easy to say that Bastards Of Fate have hit a new plateau in sound and imagination, as well as mania such the might of Suck The Light Out.

From its first breath the album has claws in the imagination, opener Freemasons heralding its arrival with the ringing of bells recorded at a Cardiff church during a UK tour. Swiftly their call is smothered in darker off-kilter hues; a breeze evolving into a quirky theatre of sound with an air of hallucination and as suggestively clockwork as it is nursery. Vocals led by Cheatwood are just as eclectic settling into a controlled incitement with a scent of Bill Nelson’s Red Noise to it, Cheatwood indeed not for the last time with a touch of that band’s founder to his delivery. Across its tempestuous flank, the song shows irritability in it rock ‘n roll, the guitar of Benji Pugh mischievously colluding with the keys of Camellia Delk for cheerier temptation while the constant nagging of bass from Jason Wellz and Doug Shelor’s swinging beats drive the raw aggressive drama boiling up in it all, an agitation ebbing and flowing with mercurial energy as 12 Stone Toddler like dynamics further colour the fevered affair.

The following Portal to Hell is creative mayhem from the first second, rhythms jabbing with relish as Cheatwood announces his throaty demon. Soon a muggy start, it subsequently clears as a melody sizzles, it in turn relaxing as madness boldly simmers before infesting the song’s eruption with a legion of styles and flavours at its merciless fingertips. Fondling the senses and thoughts with pleasure igniting insanity and psychosis loaded unpredictability, like Pere Ubu on LSD, the track is unfathomable glory. Again the former Be Bop Deluxe frontman in his latter solo era is reminded of at times but only in something so unique to Bastards Of Fate it too is hard to believe.

To be honest numerous artists are nudged into suggestion across Suck The Light Out but none are truly accurate clues to the beautiful absurdness and imagination bursting fun on offer, next up Dark Matter pushing XTC and The Residents as possible references yet neither really fitting the maze of metal and heavy rock growling upon the song’s indie and pop sculpted landscape, a pasture in a constant flux of broken normality.

Through the relatively stable stroll of Book of Lies, though a romp with volatility in every element from tenacious rhythms and synth spun poetic webbing to melodic suggestion and vocal paranoia laced reflection, and the vocal lamentation of Misanthropy, bewitchment and confusion collude in a lustful embrace of the continuing diversity and irrational lure of Suck The Light Out. All releases need numerous listens to truly get to grips with thoughts and emotions on what they offer and there is no doubt that this album needs it more than most with the pair of songs alone showing the increasing rewards to be gained.

From the captivation of Girlfren with its crystalline melodies and screwy charm to the slow funk swing of the rhythmically tribal and vocally weird Caligula, ears and pleasure are only further inflamed, the latter and our favourite track, a salaciously deranged waltz. Its majestic prowess and mental manipulation is matched by that of Supercollider, a frenzy of sound and energy bursting from calm if warped crooning like a dangerously corrupted Pryapisme; punk and psych rock just two flavours in the frantic dementia.

Unicorns in Love is instinctive Bastards of Fate twisted rock ‘n’ roll with Waste My Time backing up its raw captivation with its hazy hug of melody spun, scuzz kissed, Fleetwood Mac spiced beauty with Delk taking vocal lead; her delicious tones as mouth-watering as the sounds caressing her harmonic presence.

The album is closed by Meatstar, a celestial dirt ball of progressive and melodic intrigue again tempting comparisons but evading all with its uncompromising invention in a brewing cacophony of sonic drama and imagination driven refreshment. It quite simply sums up the album, something aggressively individual and hungrily entertaining not forgetting deliriously deranged.

Suck The Light Out is, as Bastards Of Fate, indeed Bedlam and simply one of the most striking and uncomfortably fun propositions in recent years.

Suck The Light Out is available now digitally and on vinyl through HHBTM Records from most online stores with a special limited vinyl edition including a bonus LP of alternate tracks through http://hhbtm.com/

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Pete RingMaster 25/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Eureka California – Wigwam EP

With the success and acclaim of their last album, Versus, still pretty much ringing in ears since its release just short of a year ago, US garage rock/pop duo Eureka California break up the  time before its successor with a new EP. Offering three slices of the band’s garage rock infused pop ‘n’ roll, the Wigwam EP is as sonically dysfunctional and magnetic as the Athens, Georgia hailing band’s last full-length but with a rawer quality which just hits the spot.

Wigwam is DIY old school, a flip back to the seventies with its design, recording, and release. Created with Dave Barbe (Sugar / Mercyland / Dave Barbe & the Quick Hooks) at his Chase Park Transduction Studio in Athens, the EP was recorded and mixed in just one afternoon. The two new songs and a cover of Superchunk’s Slack Motherfucker which emerged from that session come covered in self-made art and between them, band and HHBTM Records have set its price at virtually cost. It is a throwback in many ways to when passion and fans came first though fair to say, the music is the biggest pull with it.

The EP’s title track swiftly draws ears into its hands with a wash of initial sonic smog from which a rhythmic pulse begins laying down even richer bait. A single elegant melody soon wraps its charm around song and imagination too, another potent teaser heading towards the subsequent fuzzy squall of Jake Ward’s guitar and Marie A. Uhler’s stirring rhythmic enticement. As the former’s vocals make their plaintive case, the track’s energy and intensity begins to accelerate, its punk instincts rising for a tremendous crescendo of a finale.

With ease, Wigwam’s great start is matched by the scuzzy power pop of Only Birds (No Feathers). Within seconds Marie’s jabbing beats alone ensure the song has its hooks deep in a rock ‘n’ roll appetite, their nagging trespass surrounded by the hooks spilling exploits of Jake’s fuzz yielding strings. It is a commandingly catchy affair, a rousing incitement as seemingly familiar as it is certainly fresh and inescapable fun.

The final sonic roar of Slack Motherfucker is equally as captivating, Eureka California managing to give the track greater instinctive energy as well as melodic dexterity without defusing the causticity of the original. It is a fine end if over shadowed by the band’s original songs on Wigwam, itself a very intriguing teaser for what is to come in the future from Eureka California while being a highly satisfying romp for the now.

The Wigwam EP is out now on 7” vinyl through HHBTM Records.

http://eurekacaliforniaband.com/     https://www.facebook.com/eurekacalifornia     https://twitter.com/eurekacalifone

Pete RingMaster 25/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Cowtown – Paranormal Romance

Cowtown_RingMasterReview

If there has been anything more invasively infectious than Paranormal Romance this year so far we have yet to be blessed by it. The new and fourth album from the warped creative adventure of British indie popsters Cowtown is a delicious and riveting carnival of mischievously inventive pop ‘n’ roll amid seriously catchy endeavour which spark and inflame the imagination, only growing more tempting and irresistible with every listen.

Formed twelve years ago, the Leeds based Cowtown has earned a potent reputation and support for their rousing proposal of sound. Merging raw seventies power pop with punk and its post neighbour as well as their own modern imagination, the threesome of guitarist/vocalist Jonathan Nash, keybassist/vocalist Hilary Knott, and drummer David Michael Shields have caught more and more attention through their previous trio of albums; Pine-Cone Express (2007), Excellent Domestic Short Hair (2010), and especially Dudes vs. Bad Dudes (2013). New proposition Paranormal Romance is a whole new ball game though with the band’s most rounded and boldly captivating songs yet without losing the raw magnetism which made its predecessor such a greedily welcomed encounter.

Recorded with Matthew Johnson (Hookworms/Suburban Home) and mastered by Tom Woodhead (Forward Russia), album and band first tease with the brief introduction of Paranormal Romance Theme. As if inspired by Devo’s first couple of albums, the track awakens ears and imagination ready for the boisterous exploits of Clock In. Again rhythms and its off kilter melodic invention has the scent of the Mothersbaughs and Casales brothers; the Ohio band seemingly an open member of inspirations to Cowtown. A rampant romp of sound and energy, the song surges through ears with a melodic grin on its creative face and sonic deviancy in its compelling character which hooks and rhythms repeat with their own masterful persuasion.

cover_RingMasterReviewCastleman is similarly cast, exploring a more cosmic climate as it twists and turns through sonic rich imagination. Knott brings beguiling shadows to the mix whilst Shields’ beats subtly nag and drive the song into the warm arms of Nash’s vocals and his enjoyable toxic melodies. Submission to its raucous festivity is swift and just as easily given to the following Tweak. The track is a ridiculously persuasive treat; an invasion of niggling riffs and rapier like beats which is in top gear from its first to last breath like a power pop fuelled Dickies, an urgency which drives the whole of Paranormal Romance.

Living up to its name Motivational Speaker soon has ears and spirit lively recipients of its enticing pop poetry; simplicity and invention colluding in a web of infectious sonic arousal before the thirty odd seconds of Captain Planet entangles an already hungry appetite in its insurgent punk catchiness. There is no moment to catch a breath either as its short blaze is quickly surpassed by Not Sure, the track engaging in a senses blurring dance of enterprise and flirtation further lit up by the vocal unity of Nash and Knott as Shields beats seem to dig deeper into the psyche.

The bewitching grace and revelry of Castle Greyscale and indeed its inescapable rhythmic trespass has the passions hooked and lined in within moments of its opening melodic lure, only tightening the grip as enticing vocals unite with sonic stabs with bass and drums breathless in their insistence. Aural manna for an already heady party to the album, the song is matched by the delicious whirlpool of sound and creative revelry making up Let Go. It provides a theatre of imagination which burrows deeper under the skin with every one of its short minutes and subsequent listens, lust the ultimate winner and just as eagerly offered for the Devo-esque escapade of Closed Circuit where every second is sheer magnetism entangling ears in flirtatious drama and its pulsating canvas of fun.

Buggin’ Out strolls in straight after with its own authoritative escapade of senses trespassing hooks and catchy twists before the album comes to a just as thrilling close with Emojicore. The longest track on the album at three minutes, it uses all of its extensive time to weave a rich and thickly satisfying tapestry of melodic mischief with the right amount of discord and dark hues to enthral and seduce body and soul.

It is a fine end to an album which as mentioned just grows and flourishes with every listen into one of the year’s highlights. Cowtown has been approached with attention and praise before but not to the level it is easy to assume Paranormal Romance will incite.

Paranormal Romance is out now through HHBTM Records in the US and Hot Salvation and Audacious Art Experiment in the UK as well as @ https://cowtown.bandcamp.com/album/paranormal-romance

https://www.facebook.com/pages/COWTOWN/7567080935

Pete RingMaster 03/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Skinny Girl Diet – Heavy Flow

SGD_RingMasterReview

Raw and defiant, unashamedly honest and forthright, British trio Skinny Girl Diet have a sound and heart bred attitude which refuses to pull its punches or tow the party line lyrically or musically. It is a combination which roars with anger and informs with uncompromising zeal and now fuels a debut album which just demands attention. Heavy Flow is a punk infused slab of grunge confrontation as lo-fi and rapacious as it is often melodically engaging and masterfully seductive; an incitement for ear and thought which perpetually hits the spot.

Consisting of sisters Delilah and Ursula Holliday, vocals/guitar and drums respectively, and their bassist cousin Amelia Cutler, London hailing Skinny Girl Diet has increasingly been talked about and covered over past years with Heavy Flow according to the band “a body of 6 years of work”, adding “it’s basically us as a band in its entirety.”

From it’s in the face cover featuring the ladies clad in white dresses inflamed by the natural showing of periods, Heavy Flow invades the senses with assertive pride and confrontation. Its songs are emotionally intensive flying in the face of suppressive attitudes towards women and numerous other injustices shaping the world.  It is a roar of frustration and uncaged ire which stirs up air and emotions from its first breath.

Opener Comedown Intro is a sonic entanglement of solemn nicely caustic guitar alongside an alignment of a pulsating bassline and crisp beats courted by enticing harmonies. Its relatively brief coaxing leads the ears towards the awaiting antagonism of Yeti, the band’s recent single. With a tinge of The Distillers meets Babes In Toyland to it, the track rumbles and grumbles on the ear while encasing it in sonic toxicity and vocal dispute as feverish twists add to the rousing melee.

cover_RingMasterReviewIt is an outstanding full start matched by the musically more even tempered Okay. Instantly catchy with its low key but virulent stroll, the song soon brews up a tempestuous climate around the increasingly engaging tones of Delilah, further switching and embracing the contrasts across its forceful endeavour. As its predecessor and those to come, the track is a lyrical poke which makes you stand back and think even as the imagination is eagerly accosted and beguiled by its twists and turns.

The scuzzy touch of next up Lazy Eye is impressively tempered by vocal harmonies which manage to snarl and seduce simultaneously while Eyes That Paralyse is an invasive rock ‘n’ roll grievance deceptively and cantankerously anthemic. The first of the two unites the rasping prowess and causticity of guitar with a kinder caress of vocal and melodic provocation, the second the raw emotion of voice and sound to an abrasive smoulder, both further igniting ears and an already lively appetite for the release.

Already noticeable is the imaginative structure and enterprise of the band’s songs within their ever scathing provocations, next up Bored the most bold yet with its wandering bass twang and sonic espionage around the primal beats of Ursula and Delilah’s standoffish vocal trespass. The song is a riveting tapestry of multi-flavoured adventure, as punk as it is grunge and noise rock seeded as it taps into another exciting aspect to the band’s songwriting and imagination before the corrosive punk ‘n’ roll of Wolf Pack just preys on the senses.

Another pinnacle within the loft heights of Heavy Flow is forged by the acerbically grooved and voiced Silver Spoons, the track a fuzz ball of emotionally trenchant, sonically bracing discord which just sparks within ears. Its unpolished beauty is contrasted by the warm clarity bringing successor Fix Me into view, its mellow calm breeding a Breeders toned predation subsequently bringing stronger turbulence to the song’s captivating atmosphere.

Through the venomously contumacious Pretty Song and the punk familiarity of DMT, Skinny Girl Diet reinforce their command of ears and a hunger for more, the second of the two arguably the album’s least unique track with its Hole/L7 like swing but as addictive as anything involved in the success of Heavy Flow.

The biting shimmer and growl of Forget equally stirs the passions with a far more inventive design soon taken further within the stormy majesty of Wasted Smile, a track which baits the senses with melodic and emotive elegance and within the flicker of a twist unleashes a blaze of sonic and rhythmic raging upon them.  It is a superb end to the album with Comedown Outro providing a melodically raw epilogue which only urges a need to press play all over again.

Heavy Flow impresses on first listen but truly grows and inspires with further investigations. It might not be declared the best album of 2016, though it just might too with a great many, but Skinny Girl Diet has provided one of the more important propositions to be embraced.

Heavy Flow is released November 4th; self-released in the UK and through HHBTM Records in the US.

https://www.facebook.com/skinnygirldiet/   http://skinnygirldietband.tumblr.com/   https://twitter.com/skinnygirldiett/

Pete RingMaster 03/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Eureka California – Versus

EC _RingMasterReview

With songs as sonically dysfunctional as the lives in their themes, flavours and attitude at times bordering on dissonant, Versus is one of those albums which nags and pesters until it has attention involved in its mischievous challenge. The release is the new and third album from US garage rock/pop duo Eureka California, a band from Athens, Georgia who over the past three years or so has increasingly stirred up eager fuss for their sonic psychosis around an intimate and self-referential lyrical devilry.

Consisting of guitarist/vocalist Jake Ward and drummer Marie A. Uhler, Eureka California made its first mark with the Modern Times EP in 2011, the band at that point a trio. The following year saw the release of debut album Big Cats Can Swim; its awareness stoking success then potently built on by firstly a 7” split with Good Grief in 2013 but more so by well-received second album Crunch a year later. The pair of encounters also saw the band as the duo now luring fresh spotlights with Versus, their first offering recorded in a studio.

It opens with Eureka California’s Night In, a pop jangle with thumping beats and a hungry horde of riffs around the expressive tones of Ward. There is a seventies power pop/punk feel to the track and a raucous feistiness which sets the theme and tone for the album. Like The Undertones/Only Ones meets The Hives whilst spaced out on toxic pizza, the song is a rousing start to the album swiftly backed up by the just as addictive Sign My Name With An X. It too has rebellion in its creative belly and belligerence in its touch as it engineers another slice of bracing garage punk pop. Imagining Melvins and The Replacements colluding with The Super Happy Fun Club gives a hint at the spirit raising, imagination inciting exploit. As all tracks bar two, the song is a swift, psyche infesting shot of creative adrenaline barely touching two let alone three minutes; just diving in, rushing out, and leaving greed loaded exhaustion in its wake.

The fuzzy pop ‘n’ roll of Another Song About TV strolls in next, its initial lure a scuzzy blaze which settles down for a hook stocked flirtation of guitar and voice. Uhler’s rhythms have a less imposing nature to their swings this time around but certainly have meat to their jabs and devilment in their invention across the brief and contagiously sweet incitement before it disappears in an instant to be replaced by the dirtier and more sonically irritable Sober Sister. The track soon has ears bristling in pleasure and thoughts grabbing the lyrical prowess and tenacity which swings through digs and humour at the turn of a syllable whilst spotlighting moments and experiences seemingly twisted from the listener’s own.

art _RingMasterReviewThrough the grouchy bounce of Ghosts, growling sounds and vibrant vocals uniting to seriously captivate, and the acoustic off-kilter charm of Fear and Loathing in the Classic City, band and album just tighten their grip on ears and appetite. The following Cobwebs on the Wind then sees them uncage more rapacious riffs and chords within a muggy and forcibly enticing invitation to body and spirit before Caffeine lays its raw balladry on ears with initially melancholic causticity which brews up into a raucous tempest of noise and emotion.

Surf rock meets post punk is one aspect of the compelling Realizing Your Actuality which steps up next, its early sultry coaxing over steely rhythms irresistible and only reinforced by the corrosive crescendos which erupt then fall before taking over the track’s thick and inescapable persuasion for extended periods. Weezer-esque in its calm, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club toned in its predacious exploits, the track adds another big peak to the successes of Versus.

Another acoustic incitement in the reflective shape of Everybody Had a Hard Year steers eager ears the way of album closer I Will Write Mine Over Potomac and its own melodic caress leading to ravenous sonic and rhythmic ferocity. A song about “loneliness and fraying nerves”; the track ebbs and flows in intensity with thoughtful calms and a raw agitation which almost grinds on the senses. Though finding it a slow burner compared to others within Versus, it is an enthralling proposal which just gets under the skin as deeply as the album succeeds as a whole.

It might be pushing it to say that Versus is going to be the most unique album you hear this year yet everything about it is fresh and seeps Eureka California distinctiveness. Plus it rocks like a bitch and that is more than good enough for us.

Versus is out now via HHBTM Records and @ https://eurekacalifornia.bandcamp.com/album/versus

http://eurekacaliforniaband.com/   https://www.facebook.com/eurekacalifornia   https://twitter.com/eurekacalifone

Pete RingMaster 06/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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