The Spiritual Leaders – Albania Away

It may not be as obvious as Manchester, Liverpool, or Bristol for producing great bands but over recent years we have found that Cavan in Ireland has been doing just that, our ears captivated by the likes of The Radioactive Grandma, Juggling Wolves, Ape Rising and Fertile Reptile among many. Now we add The Spiritual Leaders to the list, an indie rock trio which as their new mini album shows offer a rich and varied palette of sound.

The Spiritual Leaders consists of vocalist/guitarist David Reilly, lead guitarist/bassist/keyboardist Fergus Brady and drummer Cathal Brady. The band released a self-titled debut album in the closing weeks of 2012, a record introducing a sound seeded in the inspirations of artists such as The Smiths, Radiohead, Joy Division, New Order, Whipping Boy, Pixies, Stone Roses, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Jeff Buckley, and Van Morrison but as within latest offering Albania Away bears its own individuality.

Recorded and produced by Rob Newman (Therapy?, Pet Crow) in Snug Recording Studios, Derby, Albania Away quickly fascinated with opener Picture on the Wall. An electronic thread led to a lively rhythmic shuffle and subsequent melodic jangle with an eighties indie hue. As Reilly’s vocals join the temptation the swing of the track is in full command, the song catching the imagination with its Lloyd Cole tinged character and boisterous sound.

Fatten the Calf follows and it too embraces an eighties indie/new wave lining around its infectious swing led by the seriously magnetic bass. Though seemingly slim in its textures, the wonderfully unpredictable song is a thick weave of enterprise and post punk nurtured suggestion while next up You Know Me bristles with more muscular rock ‘n’ roll attitude and a matching physical touch yet also has tinges of that post punk breeding within discord spun enterprise akin to The Pixies.

Predominantly instrumental, the outstanding Bell Jar is a captivating slice of melodic intimation with XTC-esque radiance to its atmospheric stroll while Temporary, which features Barra McGuirk on lead guitar and synthetic strings, made for beguiling acoustic companion, its stringed serenade a haunting pleasure.

Underwater With You superbly completes the release, initially an electronic teasing which is soon bound in melodic guitar wires alongside subtle but equally fertile rhythms and voice. It too has an evocative quality, an atmospheric air coloured by the band’s craft and imagination.

With every listen Albania Away captivated and fascinated with increasing strength, ears increasingly seduced by each passing minute; The Spiritual Leaders giving more proof that though still a relative secret beyond its borders Cavan is a hot bed of unique sound and real pleasure.

Albania Away is out now; available @ https://thespiritualleaders.bandcamp.com/releases and https://open.spotify.com/album/0nwrKNcbi3xF03VMQYUjqF

https://www.facebook.com/thespiritualleadersrock/

Pete RingMaster 14/05/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Victor DeLorenzo –Tranceaphone

photo by Janet Schiff

From the first moment a certain encounter tempted ears and imagination, we have been haunted by its lure of atmospheric mystery, rhythmic manipulation, and crepuscular breath. Tranceaphone is an adventure of intrigue and mystery, a seduction of unpredictable charm and undiluted craft which became an itch under the skin in no time.

The source of unbridled magnetism is the new EP from Violent Femmes founding Victor DeLorenzo, the first recording under his name in 7 years and his sixth solo release overall. The musician, actor, writer, audio engineer and producer is also one-half of the chamber rock duo Nineteen Thirteen with cellist Janet Schiff who also features across the Tranceaphone EP’s five tracks alongside Milwaukee based DeLorenzo.  The tracks within the release seed their lures in rhythmic invention, a frame and enterprise to which melodic and dextrous imagination wraps a further web of suggestion and implication. DeLorenzo has given clue to the birth of the EP by saying, “The ‘Tranceaphone’ EP is lovingly based on the idea of multiple layers of drum choirs that sing out not only in time, but with joyfully implied melodies that bob and weave. After recording different drum systems, I then wrote music that could breathe within the improvised drum set structures.

It is a compelling adventure in sound which swiftly gripped attention through the EP’s opening title track. Also featuring the guitar and vocals of Mike Hoffmann, the song opens with the resonating pulse of DeLorenzo’s bass. It is quickly joined by the organised skittishness of a Gretsch snare drum and the similarly captivating touch of, unsurprisingly, a tranceaphone; their united contagion directing body and appetite as Schiff’s synth tempting weaves around the imagination.

The track breeds an infectiousness which infests the whole of the release but as the following Lullaby reveals its character is as unique each time just as that of the songs themselves. The second song skips in and swiftly the imagination found itself basking in the darkly shadowed intimation of Schiff’s cello and equally inky toned bass. All the while DeLorenzo’s voice casts bait as somnambulistic as it is spirited; a fusion just as potent within the uncomplicated yet rich enticement of keys.

Invisible Shadows is next up, it too calm yet animated in its gait and breath and as its predecessor casting a caliginous temptation upon ears and thoughts. The rhythmic grip and creative resonance of the song firmly echoes early XTC and indeed the brief melodic keys forged return just after its close has something of that band’s Barry Andrews about it before Then Don’t Say A Word strolls in on another rhythmic captivation instantly joined by a kaleidoscope of voice and melodic crystallisation; Schiff and DeLorenzo casting a short and gripping blend of defiance, melancholy and creative impulse.

Finally When She’s There rises up to captivate as thickly as all before it. With keys provided by Matt Meixner and additional vocals from Monia, the song serenades ears and hips equally. Again rhythms cast the heart and voice of the track, its uniqueness accentuated by keys and vocals as too its emotive breath and haunting persuasion.

It is an enthralling close to a beguiling and fascinating release; the Tranceaphone EP a mysterious rapture and beauty upon a minimalist rhythmic skeleton as bold, stirring and manipulative as that sonic secrecy it wears.

The Tranceaphone EP is out now via bFrecording; available digitally across key online stores and online streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music.

https://victordelorenzo.weebly.com/   https://twitter.com/VicDeLorenzo

Pete RingMaster 09/05/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Shameless captivation within the RingMaster Parade…

Continuing to tease and light up our ears Shameless PR have sent over another collection of tracks to take a reviewing lick at and we present to you the most compelling of the bunch.

My Nature is a compelling blend of sinister seduction and menacing atmospheric intimation; it is also the latest single from Atlanta-based indie pop duo I Am a Rocketship and the lead track off of their fascinating new album Ghost Stories. It is a song which creeps into the psyche whilst manipulating the body with its infectious grooves and one which suggests indeed demands that the band’s bigger offering should be explored.

I Am a Rocketship unites the craft and imaginations of multi-instrumentalist Eric Weissinger and vocalist/cellist L E Kippner of Swedish synth-pop duo Neobox. From a chance meeting the pair formed Hitchcock Blondes before relocating to Atlanta and creating I Am a Rocketship. Their sound is a kaleidoscope of flavours woven into indie pop bred adventures but songs unafraid to venture through shadows and experimentation embracing electronica and rock instincts among other flavours.

My Nature is a perfect yet individual example of their imagination and the new album, the song immediately haunting ears through Kippner’s captivating tones which are quickly stalked by dark nasally guitar grooves. The riveting just as tenebrific bassline and the teasing touch of keys only add to the evolving temptation with lays across magnetic rhythms; it all proving pure captivation in swift time with its creative flirtation reeking danger and fascination as the song lights the way to easily imagining further rich adventures within Ghost Stories.

Similarly and equally potent in experimentation is the new single from legendary producer Martin Bisi. A fascinating slice of Avant rock, Let It Fall is a dense and compelling encounter bred on unpredictability and relishing the myriad of flavours and styles which inspire that wonderfully erratic but skilfully crafted landscape of ideation.

The track is taken from Solstice, the first solo record in five years from Bisi and his sixth such album within a career working with the eclectic likes of Brian Eno, Bill Laswell, Sonic Youth, Swans, John Zorn, Herbie Hancock, Helmet, Africa Bambaataa, Dresden Dolls, Unsane, Cop Shoot Cop, Human Impact and countless others.

Let It Fall barely shares a single breath before the richness and thickness of its mercurial instincts and sound is apparent and enthralling ears. It is not easy to fully suggest the character and voice of the song but it is one bound in the keen essences of rock, jazz, noise, classical, and art rock and more besides. It too is a fusion of menace, disturbance and contagion; haunting the senses and inspiring the imagination whilst savouring the soprano vocals of Amanda White and Genevieve Fernworthy’s electric viola alongside the baritone guitar of Diego Ferri, the dictating rhythms of Oliver Rivera-Drew and Bisi’s alluring touch in vocals and guitar. Let It Fall was soon a track impossible to ignore; one also urging an appetite to explore its main source.

Contrasting the darker hues of the previous two is the new single from San Francisco electronic outfit Nikavo. Yummy Miami is a warm and inviting piece of electronic infection with its techno nurtured pop and catchy disco bred instincts to the fore though it too offers a sound lined with an adventure and dare we say eccentricity akin to that found within the songs already covered.

Nikavo is a musical union of producers Philip Winiger and Alexey Laduda; a pair whose respective informative musical years, the former embracing a love of the German electronic music scene and being part of industrial/ EBM outfit INHALT and the latter growing up “in the rigid, yet highly creative, post-Soviet space, playing the guitar and singing”, has found a uniting passion for dance music and analogue audio synthesis. It has resulted in a project and sound which has a broad smile to its presence and an almost mischievous instinct to experiment and explore.

Yummy Miami simply hugs the senses with its fun and lively spirit, sparking a dance in the step as it strolls through a melodic breeze. Equally vocals and synths are pure infectiousness matched in persuasion by the rousing skip of rhythms and the heated wiring of guitars. That mentioned irregularity in sound is maybe not as apparent here but certainly at enthralling strength within the single’s B-side, No TV; a track bred through a more darkwave/industrial leaning and no less absorbing.

As the band celebrate the 30-year anniversary of their highly acclaimed debut album, Sweden’s celebrated 90s indie rock darlings Easy unveil new album Radical Innocence soon and comes preceded by a couple of melodic flames posing as singles to draw ears like moths.

Since the release of that first full-length, Magic Seed, Easy has frequently toured Britain and Europe and released a host of acclaim luring records; the previous two as their new offering via A Turntable Friend Records. It is a career interrupted by the band suddenly disbanding in 1994 as members explored other projects but since returning in 2010, with the original line-up of Johan Holmlund (vocals), Rikard Jormin (bass), Tommy Dannefjord (drums), Tommy Ericson and Anders Peterson (guitars), the band has found an ever greater potency in their sound and writing.

The singles, Crystal Wave and the just come out Day For Night, present the melodic jangles and lively textures which make up the band’s sound and new album, the first an animated stroll bound in warm keys, infectious hooks, and a catchy almost eighties pop nurtured breath which swiftly got under the skin. Its successor equally had attention quickly hooked, its rhythmic lure irresistible and a persistent lure into the emotive embrace and infectious enterprise waiting to further tempt. Both tracks remind a little of The Mighty Lemon Drops which does neither any harm, both firmly stamp their individuality on eager ears.

With their new album, Coniphers, scheduled for release May 22nd, US rockers Lazaris Pit uncage their new single You Don’t Tag Me In Memes Anymore to also provide a ripe teaser to whet the appetite. The track is a boisterous slice of funk dipped indie rock with an almost rebellious lining of punk rock, the kind of song which inspires a want to know and hear more.

The Raleigh-based outfit formed in 2017 and consists of Ely “Salted Sweet Cream” Yarbrough (guitar and lead vocals), Cameron “Sugarfoot” Preston (bass) and Jon “Dok Tok” Castro (drums and backing vocals). As we suggested their sound is a mix of varied flavours which at certain times also employs essences of funk, soul, psychedelia, reggae, jazz, noise, and ambience in songs as individual to another as you can imagine, a trait epitomised by the feral exploits of Cloudsculpting, the B-side to You Don’t Tag Me In Memes Anymore, and a song with a Everclear breath to its volatile and mercurial reggae and pop punk saunter.

The A-side entices a bit of blues guitar flaming to its rock ‘n’ roll, a poppier rock and that punk instinct uniting in a tenacious and rousing stroll. It also has a great garage rock like rawness to its breath which only increases the magnetism; You Don’t Tag Me In Memes Anymore leaving a lasting mark on ears and intrigue for the upcoming Coniphers.

Another artist entrapping attention with a couple of singles before a larger temptation is Rome-based electro indie pop project Ender Bender. May 1st sees the EQ EP released and providing bold lures for its release are the singles Star Killer and Honey Lavender Girl.

Ender Bender is the solo project of Eddie Olguin, a multi-instrumentalist producer now based in Rome having relocated from LA in a “life-changing move”; a move saving him from self destruction and inspiration to the themes within the EQ EP.

Star Killer swiftly shows itself as a spirited and positive slice of electro rock, every move it makes an eagerly catchy incitement and each melody an invasive contagion drawing out the inner swing in us all. With the spellbinding backing vocals of Roberta Ovatta just as winning as the sounds surrounding them, the song infested ears and body with ease; success replicated by Honey Lavender Girl as it embraced a more indie pop identity. Again Ovatta and Olguin vocally unite with charm and enterprise as guitars and keys weave a fresh side to the Ender Bender sound.

Both songs only lead to one thought, to dance with the EQ EP, job done.

Finally we have new temptations from Beauty in Chaos, the creative project of guitarist Michael Ciravolo (Human Drama, Michael Aston’s Gene Loves Jezebel) which sees him link up with a rich host of musicians song by song. With new album, The Storm Before The Calm, due May 22nd via LA-based label 33.3 Music Collective, a trio of singles have raised the keenest of anticipation of its release.

Following The Delicate Balance of All Things which featured The Mission frontman Wayne Hussey, Beauty in Chaos set free the Curse Mackey (Pigface, My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult, Evil Mothers) guesting A Kind Cruelty recently and is now followed by Almost Pure which finds Steven Seibold (Hate Dept., Pigface) alongside Ciravolo.

A Kind Cruelty rises up on a sonic breeze, bass and guitar conjuring rich intimation as the song grows and expands its intrigue. Hitting its full stride, melodies entice and hooks tease, a resonating bassline enslaving at the core. The track quickly proved a thick slab of magnetic melodic rock, every moment capturing the imagination just as its darker shadows and the vocal prowess of Mackey and indeed just as ably as its successor as a single, Almost Pure. Gothic light immediately soaks ears as the song unveils its presence, an eighties dark rock scent escalating the tempting quickly at play; indeed there is a touch of The Mission to the track at times which only thickened that potency.

Both songs epitomise the diversity and imagination which fuelled previous album Finding Beauty in Chaos and we now expect to breed rich adventures within the forthcoming The Storm Before The Calm.

 

Ghost Stories is now available everywhere digitally, including Spotify, as well as on CD, via the band’s own My Long Wknd imprint. It can be ordered directly from the artist via https://iamarocketship.bandcamp.com/.

Martin Bisi’s Let It Fall is out via Bronson Recordings as too the album Solstice; available digitally across key online stores and online streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music.

Yummy Miami from Nikavo is out now.

The Easy singles are available now with Radical Innocence released through A Turntable Friend Records on 1st May.

Lazaris Pit has You Don’t Tag Me in Memes Anymore available everywhere digitally, including Spotify and Apple Music now with the Coniphers album out on May 22nd.

As of May 1st, the EQ EP will be available across online stores and streaming platforms, including Spotify and Bandcamp.

The Storm Before The Calm will be released on CD and digitally on May 22nd with a later release date to be announced for the vinyl editions. These include a 180g vinyl (including a black numbered limited edition and a black & blue duo-tone). Pre-orders come with an immediate download of A Kind Cruelty and the full digital release on May 22nd includes a 25+ minute title opus that does not appear on the vinyl version. The Storm Before The Calm can be ordered here. https://www.beautyinchaosmusic.com/music-store

 

https://iamarocketship.com   https://twitter.com/Iamarocketship1  https://www.facebook.com/iamarocketship/

http://martinbisi.com/   https://www.facebook.com/Martin-Bisi-10025408974   https://twitter.com/martinbisi

https://www.facebook.com/Nikavo-279477962909519  https://nikavo.bandcamp.com/

http://www.easy-magicseeds.se/   https://www.facebook.com/SwedishindiebandEasy/   https://easy-sweden.bandcamp.com/

https://www.lazarispit.com/   https://www.facebook.com/LazarisPit/   https://twitter.com/themLPboys

https://lazarispit.bandcamp.com/

http://www.enderbender.com/   https://www.facebook.com/enderbendersonicdrug/   https://twitter.com/iamEnderBender

https://www.beautyinchaosmusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/beautyinchaosmusic/   https://twitter.com/MichaelCiravolo   https://beautyinchaos.bandcamp.com/

Pete RingMaster 02/05/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Ben Wood and The Bad Ideas – Cora Cora Cora

You will forgive us, like the band we hope, for bringing this single to your attention a little late but it is a must for all those with a bold adventure in their indie rock hearts and rapacious fever in their indie pop instincts. The track is Cora Cora Cora and it comes from UK outfit Ben Wood and The Bad Ideas, and the first song in a planned project which if all prove as striking will make 2020 a highly busy and successful time for the UK band.

January saw the launching of a 12 month campaign which will see the London based band release a single per month for that period, songs set to feature guest performances from the likes of drummer Nick Maybury (Juliette Lewis & The Licks/ Scott Weiland Band) and prog pioneer Billy Ritchie (Clouds/ The 123) on keys alongside lead vocalist/guitarist Wood, lead guitarist Andy Duke (Flesh Tetris), bassist Ed Sonsino, and drummer Clive Bissell.

Cora Cora Cora as mentioned is their first offering and sees the legendary Dave Barbarossa (Adam & The Ants/ Bow Wow Wow) featuring on drums. Fair to say the track immediately gripped ears with its almost sinister melodic lure which emerged from the initial blast of rhythmic temptation. That fruitful hook continues to wind across the song, increasing its intoxication as Woods potent tones swing on the creative threads of the band led by Duke’s ever magnetic craft.

It is a captivating encounter which is only grips tighter with its post punk seeded shadows and rhythmic nagging and erupts to greater heights with its enlivened chorus and increasingly virulent sound.

The track is superb and a thrilling introduction to the band’s proposed endeavour so go grab now before its greedily anticipated successor is uncaged. Ben Wood & The Bad Ideas are out to grab your ears and attention and already it is easy to feel it could be a done deal.

Cora Cora Cora is available now via Back2Forward Records.

https://www.facebook.com/BenWoodTheBadIdeas/

Pete RingMaster 16/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Beat Hotel – Self Titled EP

photo by DC Cane

UK outfit Beat Hotel is not a proposition which invites regular reservations into its indie rock exploits but when they do the creative service and fun has proven an on-going pleasure. Their occasional coming together has now brought us a self-titled EP and a collection of songs which had us increasingly and firmly hooked.

Formed around 1988 by bassist/vocalist Arash Torabi (The June Brides, The Distractions, The Granite Shore) and vocalist/guitarist/producer Paul Pascoe (Mudlow, Palm Springs, Perfect English Weather) after the pair met at a gig by The Jasmine Minks, it was not until 2013 that the outfit released any records. It was the double A-side 7″ Best of Our Years / The Fire featuring Jasmine Minks frontman Jim Shepherd which made that first impact. Since then the band has seen its line-up completed by drummer Dave Morgan (The Loft, The Weather Prophets) and guitarist/vocalist Stephen Brett (Mojo Fins).

Their new EP also sees the strings and keys enterprise of Frank Sweeney (The June Brides, Magic City Trio) guesting, and is a release said to be inspired by the body of sound released by Creation Records over time, a flavouring easy to sense within songs which still share their own individual character and temptation. They are tracks which explore “love and near-death and confronting the very worst aspects of ourselves, facing down those inner demons, the fears that haunt us and our deepest, darkest secrets,” and just as potently are six encounters which incited eager pleasure.

The EP opens up with Feel It and immediately its organic catchiness descends as guitars and rhythms erupt. Its stroll is bound in infection, the fuzziness of guitars a great union with the cleaner cut melody of the vocals as a rich wiry hook lays a magnetic thread throughout the song. Darker shadows and drama only add to its richness and temptation of its nineties toned saunter

It is a great start more than matched by recent single Bury It Deep. From its thickly alluring start, the track swings with enticement and melodic coaxing, a Lloyd Cole and the Commotions tinted breath wrapping its natural infectiousness and melodic prowess. A psych rock wine adds to the intoxication of the EP’s best moment, Pascoe and Brett weaving a compelling tapestry of tempting with their guitars across just as enticing rhythms.

Featuring James Thomas on drums, Low Slung Loser follows springing a more feral rock aptitude upon quickly embracing ears. Indie and blues tinted psych rock also collude in its prowling enticement, a whiff of Primal Scream meets The Jesus and Mary Chain adding to its fascination before the band provide a great cover of The Wishing Stones song Beat Girl. Though it maybe pales against the band’s own songs, the song beguiled with its melodic hug from a subdued but catchy gait as strings like keys effortlessly seduce.

Daddy, I Drown is next up, its initial almost Cure like invitation enough to entangle ears and attention before increasing its creative hook and melodic radiance with each enterprising minute. Another major moment within the release, vocals as heavily persuasive as the craft of each member, the track lingered well after is departure though final song Heat Light Fire proved a strong distraction for its three and a half minutes plus.

The closer eases as it slowly unwinds its invitation, guitars and keys a mesmeric blossoming which brings a darker intensity and drama with its rise. Bordering on the tempestuous without ever erupting in real turbulence, the song is a striking and gripping end to an EP just as potent in grabbing attention.

We may not have Beat Hotel around that often to book time with but when they are this release is prime example as to why so many book an extensive stay in their company.

The Beat Hotel is out now on 12″ vinyl and digitally via Occultation Recordings; available @ https://beathotel2.bandcamp.com/album/beat-hotel

https://www.facebook.com/Beat-Hotel-107226936009024/   https://twitter.com/paulbeat70

Pete RingMaster 16/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Engine Summer – Back-Street Boys

Suckers for idiosyncratic hooks, irregular rhythms, and drone back grooves which nag their way into the psyche, it was inevitable that the new EP from Chicago hailing trio, Engine Summer, would have us dangling from its aberrant antics and warped imagination like a dysfunctional puppet and lusting after every second time and time again. Back-Street Boys is manna to the anomalous freak in us all; a collection of tracks seeded in the deviancy, irreverence, and contagion of the finest post punk, psych rock, and indie eccentricity known to man but a gathering breeding the kind of uniqueness which keeps us lustfully lost in the grip of music.

Consisting of Jeremy, Benny, and Ry, Engine Summer formed in late 2016 and quickly made a potent mark on the Chicago live before venturing further afield with two tours of the East Coast. Sharing stages with the likes of for Ra Ra Riot, Bodega, Acquaintances, and Baked along the way and a pair of EPs as well as their debut album has only cemented their reputation for creating apologetically catchy but maverick songs which linger long after their arrival. Back-Street Boys is the successor to their acclaimed Indiana EP, one “piggybacking off” their 2019 Dion Lunadon of A Place to Bury Strangers mastered predecessor to breach a whole new plateau of Engine Summer pleasure.

Their new offering is bookended by the band’s previously released singles, Carol’s Dead and Night School, an entrance and departure which is worth the effort of digging into Back-Street Boys alone. The first of the two more taunts than invites attention with its initial resonating throb of bass and lure dangling guitar but with the same impossible to ignore intrigue at its core. As tenacious beats increasingly swung their manipulative bait and the band’s twitchy vocals united in a just as lively and devilish static dance on the ears, the track enslaved as it stomped around with irresistible dynamics and attitude. Teasing with essences reminding of bands such as Gang Of Four, Artery, and The Fall across its more forceful individuality, the song is glorious and one of the best tracks of the past decade.

Night School similarly proved why its great success as a single, its stroll less boisterous but just as persuasive as nagging chords and persistent rhythms aligned to orchestrate instinctive movement and further hunger for their atypical exploits, Each are feasts for any with a post punk and krautrock nurtured appetite and fair to say that in between, the two tracks the enticement proved just as addictive and galvanic.

Suds follows the EP’s first track, quickly laying out its own web of spiky hooks around motion chivvying rhythms. Like a hybrid birth in a contorted fusion of The Fire Engines, Swell Maps, and We Are The Physics, it like its predecessor had us wrapped around its sonic finger before Under the Sea leapt in with an indie pop dance within a psych punk cage of compulsion to equal have us drooling.

Groovin’ on 63rd marries the renegade of eighties post punk with a similarly aged new wave devilment before embroiling it in the band’s freak bred imagination, a garage punk breath only adding to its funky disposition while Likes saunters along with a meandering Melvins-esque smile to effortlessly worm under the same skin its predecessor had already breached.

Completing the line-up is Spice Boys, a psych pop serenade as sublimely infectiously in its harmonic charm as it is in its darkly contrasting rhythmic canter. Adding yet another shade of imagination and flavouring to the release, the track seduced as it coerced; its intoxication epitomizing the fascination and distinctive enterprise which makes Engine Summer one seriously hypnotic band and the Back-Street Boys EP their finest moment yet.

Back-Street Boys is available now @ https://enginesummer.bandcamp.com/album/back-street-boys

https://www.enginesummer.com/   https://www.facebook.com/enginesummer/

Pete RingMaster 27/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Waco – Human Magic

With requests for its attention coming from various directions including one from an old friend of The RR in the band’s very own Welshy who previously swung the sticks in one of our all-time fav bands, Top Buzzer, we just had to take a gander at the new album from UK outfit Waco. It is a move which brought immediate rewards and pleasure, both increasing by the listen so much so that we just had to introduce you to Human Magic and its riot of anarchic punk infested rock ‘n’ roll.

From song to song, Waco reveals a sound which rebels against expectations and wanders into an imagination which is as feral as the sounds it produces yet comes with a prowess and mischief as skilfully woven as it is organically bred. Describing the band’s sound is easy for a minute or two but soon deviates from any suggestion offered within the next but maybe imagine a fusion of Rocket from the Crypt, Jaya The Cat, and Japanese Fighting Fish and you get an on-going clue to the character of it and in turn debut album Human Magic.

Providing songs “laced with metaphysics, conspiracy theories and spirituality”, 2014 founded London hailing Waco consists of the inimitable lead vocals of guitarist Jak, the hook laded exploits of fellow guitarist Tom, and the addiction crowding endeavour of bassist James around the ever manipulate and bold rhythms of Welshy. Human Magic also features the just as fertile enterprise of former bassist Chris who sadly passed away late 2018 and was an integral part of attention and plaudit grabbing EPs the band released over the years.

 Human Magic opens up with The Jersey Devil and immediately had intrigue hooked as a spicy sax rose up around the bold tones of Jak, a lure instantly erupting in a bold and rousing stomp. There is a vein of seventies pop punk come power pop to the track too which escalates its infectious deeds, Welshy’s  beats landing with an eagerness only echoed in that contagion and the enterprise around them.

It is a spirit rousing start quickly backed up by the just as devilish Levenshulme Lover, a slice of indie rock meets pop punk that revels in the raw breath and mischievous nature of both. Rhythms again had the body pumped as vocals engaged with the song’s own holler; a touch of Buster Shuffle like revelry joining a bluesy finale to give greater dexterity to the song before N15 saunters in with a summery glow and instinctive catchiness swiftly emphasized by Tom’s melodic touch. Again a sax shares richly flavoursome flames to emulate the heat of the guitar while the union of vocals across the band and more accentuates the radiance of the song.

The album’s title track is a brief cosmic glide, a golden instrumental sunset before the senses bouncing, spirit rousing holler of Anthony. Firm heady beats lead the second track’s entrance, splashes of guitar igniting the air as the bass tenaciously growls and strolls through song and ears alike. Jak’s vocals match the sounds around them in hooks and almost rapacious tempting, everything aligning to provide a thumping virulent rock ‘n’ roll roar with that previously mentioned Rocket From The Crypt like essence icing on the raucous cake.

Next up Daydream has a touch of Flogging Molly playing Elvis Costello to its balladry, a piano shaping its emotive hug before things increasingly grow rowdy with Jak sharing his inimitable expression and presence in its midst while My Brother, We’ll Rise Again surrounds ears in a dark rock embrace hinting of bands such as The Filthy Tongues or The Ugly Kings in its short sultry and soulful croon. Both only further stretch the varied sound and landscape of the album, an endeavour further pushed by the indie pop rock contagion of The Valleys.

As the psych rock scented Smalltown Goths tempts and in turn rocks ears with its own dose of infection and Six Feet Under straight after serenades the same welcoming guests with its country folk lined dance, it is fair to say that Human Magic slipped deeper under the skin, then burrowing just a layer or two further as By My Side serenaded with its lively pop drama and glorious mix of vocals and definitely more so through the boisterous antics of Catbrain. The latter is superb stealing favourite song honours from the moment Welshy’s deviously addictive beats burst from a concussive entrance to infest feet and musical instincts with guitars spinning a web of matching temptation around Jak’s and the band’s devilish vocals and intent.

Completed by Tomorrow’s Gorgeous Globe and its magnetic poetry, Human Magic more than lives up to its suggestive name and all the reasons from many as to why we should have checked it out. To be honest all leasing words only touched on the magnificence of the album and we can only add our own summons to theirs for you to share real attention its way.

 Human Magic is out now via Standby Records.

http://www.wacoband.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/Wacouk/   https://twitter.com/wacobanduk

 Pete RingMaster 27/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Morning Bells – Fall From The Velvet Sky

photo by Susan Sage

From its evocative title to the intimacy of its heart bred lyrics alone, the new EP from US indie rock outfit Morning Bells makes for a richly alluring proposition and bound in just as provocative and arousing sounds Fall From The Velvet Sky quite simply proved one richly compelling encounter.

Hailing from Raleigh in N. Carolina, Morning Bells began with the creative union of drummer Bryan Fransman and long-time friend, vocalist Ric Denton. Swiftly the emerging band grew as bassist Laura Weislo was enlisted by the duo with in time guitarist Emory Ball and keyboardist Peele Wimberley completing the quintet. Their sound is said to embrace inspirations ranging from Johnny Marr, Television, and The Gun Club to The Smiths, Yo La Tengo, David Sylvian, and Talk Talk alongside for us upon their first EP a certain R.E.M. scenting.

In saying that, the opening track of Fall From The Velvet Sky has a thick dark creative breath which reminds of Scottish band, The Filthy Tongues. The initial melodic glisten of Ghost Story is soon descended upon by emotive shadows, keys and rhythms united in their gothic intimation even before Denton shares his equally suggestive tones. The psych rock breath of those keys continues to light the haunting embrace of the song, its reflective stroll a prowling instigator on ears and imagination.

The track is superb remaining our favourite moment within Fall From The Velvet Sky with relative ease though its companions like the following Through The Dark are no less potent in their captivation and creative incitement. As its predecessor, the EP’s second track immediately enticed keen attention with its first melodic touch, guitar and keys swiftly engaging the senses before the shadowy lure of rhythms and Denton’s ever magnetic tones and words escalate the enticement. The bewitching serenade of the song simply had us hooked before The Truth Is matched its success with its own absorbing temptation. Pop and rock traits entangle within the captivation woven and addiction bred, thick fascination spawned in the web of sound and voice.

Next up, The Night You Touched My Hand shares an eighties indie pop seduction in its melodies and nineties rock rapacity, a fusion further invigorated by volatile urgency and touches with the result another track which just got under the skin and had us hooked and involved in swift time.

The EP concludes with Tonight; a track which maybe did not quite match up to its companions yet had ears eagerly held and our pleasure in full flow as Fall From The Velvet Sky completed its beguiling adventure. It is a release which quickly and increasingly impressed and aroused, thoughts soon relishing the band’s own imagination us eager anticipation blossomed for the next fresh creative resonance from Morning Bells.

Fall From The Velvet Sky is out now; available @ https://morningbellsband.bandcamp.com/album/fall-from-the-velvet-sky

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Pete RingMaster 04/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Mr Ted – El Dirty Sex

Amongst the mischievous and devilry loaded protagonists which help make rock ‘n’ roll so fun there is one certain rascal which is beginning to stand out more than most and that is UK outfit Mr Ted. We had a hint of their devilish manner, intent, and enterprise through a split release with Bisch Nader earlier this year on Society Of Losers and it is in full rebellious mood with debut album El Dirty Sex, again unleashed by the Liverpool label.

Consisting of Merseyside bred Peter Williamson, Mark Hughes, Phillie Collier, and Mark Charles Manning, Mr Ted create a sound embracing the best diablerie of punk and noise rock and the similarly roguish hues of grunge, alt rock, and other rapacious flavours. It emerges within El Dirty Sex as one captivatingly disobedient incitement as ridiculous in its antics as it is irresistible in its character and exploits with unbridled fun fuelling all.

Though hard to pin down with comparisons there is definitely something akin to Aussie band I Am Duckeye to the Mr Ted sound but as the album shows it develops new aspects in noise and misconduct song to song. The album opens up with Rage Quittin’, and immediately gets its bounce going as rhythms jump about with funk instincts. In no time riffs and hooks are adding their enticement with vocals matching their boisterousness yet all the while a darker, heavier edge infests the lining of the song; its doomier hue bringing thicker body to the instinctive predation of the quickly compelling encounter and its Houdini meets the previously mentioned Australians natured stomp.

It is an outstanding start to the album quickly matched by the alt rock shenanigans of The Bean Song with its animated moves and virulent hookery. Darkly hued rhythms incite and entice from the first second, guitars and vocals casting a web of temptation which effortlessly worms itself into ears and body with the inevitable involvement achieved by its monkey tricks including exploiting the equally infectious lure of The Kinks with a big grin.

The outstanding Shame is next up and similarly thrusts its inescapable hooks forward from the first breath; grooves which swing with knowing relish of their subsequent success in getting hips and lust to do their bidding. As crispy favourites fall as part of its lyrical observation, the song buried itself deep in the passions and psyche adding layers of voracious rock ‘n’ roll by each irresistible minute to seal such slavery before Sea Of Platelets shares an indie pop breeding and psyche rock shaping with matching eagerness; a touch of Television Personalities only aiding its thick persuasion.

Originally their part in that earlier mentions split release, Muscle Milk steps up next. Its lean but easily coaxing beginnings lead ears into the awaiting thick mass of dextrous sound; again grooves and rhythms inherently tempting in its rapacious but mercurial doom/sludge mixed body of contagious trespass. Still as irresistible as it was earlier this year, the track epitomises the core of a Mr Ted song and all the mischief and creative perversity found.

Through the punk ‘n’ roll ferocity of One 2 Panda, a predominantly instrumental track just as devious in its intrigue wired suggestiveness as it is predatory in its noise punk menace, and the feral contagion of the Happy Song, the album’s claws just dug deeper while Sexy Legs displayed its own funk and pop rock enterprise to take body and imagination on another energetic ride with unpredictability and misbehaviour for company.

El Dirty Sex goes out on the magnetic antics of firstly Andrew WK Party In Ireland, its title unsurprisingly giving clue to the major spice in its punk rock riot which also has a bit of Stiff Little Fingers to it with a Flogging Molly spicing breaking upon the folkish hues that emerge in the fun. Pickled Eggs and Snakes concludes the release, providing eight minutes of inimitable temptation taking essences of The Beatles, The Scaffold, Mischief Brew, and Half Man Half Biscuit in its increasingly volatile shanty. As everywhere though, it soon spreads its own unique voice and character of sound to leave us so hungry for much more.

Released in September we are a little late to the party but El Dirty Sexy has an open invitation which will never go out of date and should definitely be accepted.

El Dirty Sexy is out now via Society Of Losers Records; available @ https://mr-ted.bandcamp.com/album/el-dirty-sexy

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Pete RingMaster 19/11/2019

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Caustic Minds – Black Oil For A Soul

With a rather potent reputation in tow courtesy of their highly energetic live performances, alternative rock outfit Caustic Minds has a certain buzz brewing up around them and one sure to be only accelerated by the recent release of the band’s debut EP. Five tracks strong, Black Oil For A Soul is quite simply an encounter which makes you just stop and pay attention.

Formed in Germany in 2007, Berlin based Caustic Minds has a background as rich as their sound. Vocalist Laura Jiménez Alvarez comes from Mexico City, while guitarist Daniel Viseras Calvache is Granada in Spain hailing. With bassist Michiel Sybers born in Antwerpen, Belgium and drummer Chris Crabtree British/German bred, it is a cosmopolitan mix as flavoursome as the blend of hard rock and indie enticement they conjure up between them. Over time the band has had references to the likes of Queens Of The Stone Age, The Dead Weather, Arctic Monkeys, and Black Sabbath shared upon their sound though for our ears Black Oil For A Soul tantalises and captivates like a hybrid fusion of Karn8 and My Baby.

Persistently compelling in its enterprise and bold in its character, the EP immediately had ears and imagination enslaved with opener Eyes On Fire. Never relinquishing its favourite track grip from its first escapade, the song instantly harries and tempts with a stalking fusion of stabbing beats and siren scythes of guitar. Instantly magnetic, the track only escalates its lures as a swagger breaks out in a sure stroll ridden by the similarly captivating tones of Alvarez. With a groove which infests hips without invitation and an instinctive roar that demands unity, the imagination soaked track easily gripped body and appetite.

Though for personal tastes the release never quite reached those major heights again, its presence and enterprise is a lofty adventure that continues to beguile, next up Baby Doll providing a fiery blaze of punk shaped rock ‘n’ roll with progressive breath to its winds as melodic seduction fuels its great unpredictability.

Similarly Destroyer teased and taunted the imagination; its immediate launch part prowl part strut and all fascination. Intoxicating in its bluesy charm and eye balling in its attitude, the temptress of a song proved another irresistible holler which never fed expectations before Blacklist brought its own beguiling lures to the party. Rising on spirals of sonic and melodic heat, the track is another which teases as it tempts. Like flames in a fire stirring thoughts and gripping attention as its spellbinding hold sprung creative shapes the song simply flirted with the imagination as vocals and individual enterprise trapped ears.

The EP closes up with Carry On, another moment within the EP that enthralled with ease as its seductive moves and shameless grooves toyed alongside the ever compelling barracuda toned bass of Sybers. As each track and the EP as a whole, the closer is all sensuous bait and steamy endeavour honed into rock ‘n’ roll that shamelessly and skilfully entices and firmly attracts.

Black Oil For A Soul more than suggests that the boisterous murmur around Caustic Minds is sound and about to boil over beyond the German borders the band is already putting under their spell and as a bonus ‘name your own price’ release on the band’s Bandcamp site, it is one encounter no one should be ignoring.

Black Oil For A Soul is available now @ https://causticminds.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/causticminds/

Pete RingMaster 29/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright