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

Slug Comparison – IIa

photo by Peter Wiholm

As the world and age wears down the ability to be truly surprised and equally finding many things to be   especially excited by, there is one thing which does get the juices flowing and that is something new from Slug Comparison. That kind of anticipation springs from being enthralled by its first single Bringer of Doom and subsequently hooked on a following self-titled debut album back in 2014 and has now been seriously rewarded with new EP IIa.

For those yet to discover the glory of Slug Comparison, it is the solo project of Doug Harrison, the vocalist/guitarist of the similarly tempting Canadian progressive rock outfit Fen, they not to be confused with the British black metallers of the same name. Harrison’s sound has already proved to be is an instinctively bold and imaginative embracing of various rock bred styles and textures while involving ears and thoughts with an intimacy which maybe can only emerge within a solo endeavour. It has been a quiet time on the Slug Comparison front recently with Harrison being afflicted by tendinitis last year which brought his work on new tracks to a temporary halt; being unable to play and compose as is his process on the guitar. He is back now though and returns with the first in a series of EPs, a trio of songs produced by Doug Fury with Harrison which simply ignites the senses and imagination like never before.

Drawing on the craft of Fen guitarist Sam Levin, bassist Mike Young from The Devin Townsend Band, and Randall Stoll of Congenital Fixation to bring his new tracks to life, the latter pair having helped out previously on that first album, Harrison instantly captivates attention with opener Let Some Light. The lure of acoustic guitar hungrily caresses ears initially, it’s tempting soon joined and enhanced by Harrison’s distinctive and ever compelling vocals and the darker hues of bass and beats. Melodies ignite across the infectious canter of the song, opening like suggestive blooms as voice shares emotion and reflection with harmonic and earnest dexterity. Heavier rock strains add to the evolving landscape of the song, essences of blues and classic rock colouring more progressive and folkish essences though it all joins and emerges as something with its own character and style. The track is simply delicious, infectious and emotive while involving body and thought with sublime ease and craft; escalating all attributes with its unpredictability.

The opener also reveals a new organic catchiness in Harrison’s music without defusing the imagination and established individuality of sound exposed within his debut album. That infectiousness is even more virulent in the following Exactly What to Do. If its predecessor is irresistible, the second track is alchemy for the spirit, the track instantly grabbing hips and instincts with its swinging gait and a rock ‘n’ roll hunger soon joined by an addiction inciting chorus. Spicy grooves and grungy rapacity adds to the contagious theatre of the song, every catchy twist and seductive turn a spark to involvement and lusty pleasure. At times there are hints at the likes of Porcupine Tree, Voyager, and Katatonia within the adventure but again no more than scents in its own rich roar.

Becoming completes the EP, a gentle stroll of a song with Harrison and acoustic guitar again an engaging hug welcoming ears into the intimacy and heart of the song. A smouldering persuasion compared to the forceful exploits of the first two tracks, it still needs little time to unite with thoughts and appetite as ears get lost in its melodic wiring and descriptive beauty.

Even with an instinctive connection with the sounds of Slug Comparison because of those earlier temptations, IIa still left a surprise spawned open mouth behind on its first listen and a greed for much more thereon in. Doug Harrison has hit yet another plateau with his own writing and music and indeed for us eclipsed anything from Fen to date too; time the world caught on we say.

The IIa EP is out now and available @ https://slugcomparison.bandcamp.com/album/iia as a name your own price download.

http://www.slugcomparison.com/    https://www.facebook.com/slugcomparison/

Pete RingMaster 13/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Stellarscope – Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost

Evocatively invasive and seductive from its first to last breath, Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost is the new album from US outfit Stellarscope. Shaped by rousing yet darkly suggestive rhythms and driven by emotion strapped melodies within cinematically hued atmospherics, the release consumes as it ignites ears and imagination from pretty much its opening and seemingly intimate contemplation of “the pain of loss and the fear of an uncertain future.”

The creative union of vocalist/bassist/guitarist Tom Lugo and drummer Bob Forman, the band expanding with bassist/keyboardist Rob DeFlaviis and guitarist Edward Neenan live, Philadelphia hailing Stellarscope weave walls of sound from a relentlessly infectious blend of post punk, indie rock, shoegaze and more. Their music and songs devour the senses but simultaneously reveal a lively and eventful character which has the body bouncing and thoughts weaving, reactions fully inspired by Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost.

The album opens up with Don’t Belong and instantly has ears enthralled through a deep bass groove amidst boisterous beats as the guitar shares its fuzzy enterprise. The addition of Lugo’s voice, a delivery as warm as it is melancholic, enriches the swift coaxing and equally seems to spur a thicker scuzzy hue in the sounds around him. There is a sense of emotional desperation at times in his vocal presence too as his words reflect and explore in the fall-out of lost love. Richly captivating, like a fusion of My Bloody Valentine and Artery, the haunting trespass gets things off to a powerful and impressive start.

The following Capsized only builds on that compelling invitation, instantly gripping intrigue and a full welcome with its own distinct lure of beats and bass before opening up into a controlled stroll with moments of fever led by Lugo’s again easy to consume vocal presence. With essences of bands such as A Place To Bury Strangers and Slowdive in its instinctively catchy canter, the song is a smooth collision of emotional drama and sonic infection sparking body and appetite before Falling with its mellower gait and sultry climate offers a cosmic caress come intimately involving suffocation, one as funky and seductive as it is emotionally shadowy. As in the first, Forman’s rhythmic rock ‘n’ roll prowess is anthemic and manipulative of body and spirit whilst Lugo’s guitar and bass enterprise conjures similar involvement of emotions and thoughts with its contrasting yet mutually tempting tides of suggestiveness.

The thumping beats of Forman has speakers and body romping within a whisper of a breath as Only Strangers Now steps up next; his controlled but driving exploits alone irresistible bait. The tenacious rhythmic incitement is skilfully wrapped with a Joy Division seeded tone though that too has real liveliness to its solemn wash with vocals just as energetically flirtatious. Taking best track honours on the first listen, the band’s recent single sets up the more emotionally intense All For You perfectly, the following song’s laid back reflection fuelled atmosphere part House Of Love, part My Bloody Valentine but with the underlying sonic causticity found in Jesus And Mary Chain. Hypnotic and ghostly with a great concussive essence in its rhythmic touch, the track is another full immersion of ears and imagination within Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost.

So Long brings another accelerated charge and climate with its infectious adventure straight after; its cinematic and heavy atmosphere seeded in second and third album era of The Cure though melodically Ride come to mind while You Feel It Too has more of a synth pop meets noise rock meets fuzzy shoegaze serenade for the listener to explore though as with all songs, what emerges has only the Stellarscope persona all over it. Both songs leave rich pleasure a lingering memory with the first especially prone to lingering in thoughts with its tenacious escapade.

Both Nothing To Me and No Reason Why capture the imagination with ease, the first a fuzzy smog of sound and emotional openness fuelled by Forman’s ever voraciously infectious rhythms  while its successor is a slower and darker enveloping of the senses with its own alluring radiance and plaintive shadows. Though neither quite match up to those before for personal tastes they each only enrich and strengthen the depths and enjoyment of the album with the second arguably offering the release’s most intense and intriguing moment.

Completed by the raw and almost disarming This Is How It Ends with its seductively cloaked and richly enticing stark climate and emotion, Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost is one compelling adventure from start to finish which only grows with every listen. There are numerous essences and textures which go onto the band’s adventurous sound but as suggested, all woven into something if not fully unique as close as you would wish.

Standing In The Shadow Of Your Ghost is out now through Patetico Recordings @ https://pateticorecordings.bandcamp.com/album/standing-in-the-shadow-of-your-ghost

https://www.facebook.com/Stellarscope-42638364841/

Pete RingMaster 13/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Smidley – Self Titled

Photo Credit Hayden

Named after his sadly departed “beloved black lab mutt”, Smidley is the new solo project of Foxing vocalist Conor Murphy. It is an adventure which sees the singer move away from the more intense post rock/dark ambient pastures of the St Louis band to explore lighter climates of indie pop infused alternative/psych rock but lyrically continue his ability to immerse the listener in the heart of songs which on his debut self-titled album either wear an almost mischievous grin or share the richest shadows of emotions. The result is a release which personally captivates far more eagerly and memorably than his day job and leaves the imagination basking in the fusion of melancholy and joy.

Talking about the album, Murphy announced its making as “…the greatest time I’ve ever had making, recording or playing music in my life,” going on to say “I tried to eliminate any expectations for this record and focused entirely on having a good time with it.” Listening to the ten tracks making up the album, it is easy to hear that care free emotion and energy, each song seeming to have a smile on its creative face whether romping with ears or sharing their more intensely intimate moments.

Featuring a handful of Murphy’s friends with saxophonist Cameron Boucher from Sorority Noise, Tigers Jaw’s guitarist Ben Walsh, and drummer Eric Slick of Dr Dog and Lithuania fame amongst them, the Joe Reinhart produced and mixed album opens up with the feisty exploits of Hell. Within its first couple of breaths, it is energetically strolling through ears with bold beats and a great bulbous bassline courting a bubbling of steely riffs and hooks; Murphy’s distinct melodic tones casting their warm caresses across it all. The track’s canter seems to grow more tenacious as brass and melodies weave their sultry patterns across the swiftly engaging slice of inescapably infectious pop rock.

The excellent start is continued and escalated by successor No One Likes You; it’s almost teasing web of cheeky hooks and quaint melodies irresistible with their Buzzcocks meets Weezer like character and virulent catchiness. With more creatively shiny things to induce raw lust and a greedy appetite than found in a diamond mine, the song is pure captivation working its flirtation up to the end when Dead Retrievers tries to stake its claim on the imagination. Its success is not slow in coming either, its more stable strums and calm exterior highly persuasive as it leads ears into a more tempestuous yet still composed blaze of multi-flavoured enterprise, Murphy again steering things with his emotive expression and thought catching words.

It’s more surly body and increasingly fiery climate easily hits the spot before the melodic kiss of Nothing’ll warms up ears and enjoyment; voice and guitar a bare reflection subsequently joined by the warm sighs of sax and the heavier, more hearty saunter of bass and beats. The song is a prime example of the melancholy and hope as well as contentment shaping the release, the latter hues more prevalent within the swinging dynamics and virile indie pop of Pink Gallo. Its intoxicating aroma of psych pop and volatile shoegaze is instinctively compelling, increasing its lure as more volatile textures and flavours erupt across its wonderfully mercurial landscape.

The outstanding Fuck This brings a temptation bred in the infectious inspirations of something akin to The Jam inflamed with Murphy’s own personal devouring of numerous strains of rock ‘n’ roll while It Doesn’t Tear Me Up is an acoustic exhalation laying on ears and heart like a fresh morning dew bred from previous harsh impacts but sharing the dawn of new hopes and adventures. Both tracks simply beguile in their differing ways as too Power Word Kill with its contagion of rock pop; harmonies and melodies rivalling hooks and driving rhythms in seduction and manipulation.

The album closes with the twin acoustic led and emotional contemplations of Milkshake and Under The Table, two tracks which smouldered in their persuasion rather than commanded quick and forceful attention but reached the same height of temptation over time. The honesty to both tracks is as gripping as their sounds and invention, providing the release with a powerful and compelling end.

Also featuring the craft of guitarists Jon Heredia, Dominic Angelella, and Joe Reinhart alongside that of bassist Tyler Long, and percussionist Ricardo Lagomisino, the Smidley album is an instant joy which truly just gets bigger and better with every outing.

The Smidley album is out now through Triple Crown Records and available @ https://smidley.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/smidleymurphy/

Pete RingMaster 03/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Tangents – Tonight

Hailing from Nottingham, The Tangents is a trio which seemingly has been making a strong impression on their local music scene. With new single, Tonight, as a form of evidence, it is not too hard to understand why. The track is a lively slice of indie pop rock with a catchiness and vibrancy which belies its emotive theme of lost love and leaves a strong intrigue to hear a bit more of the British outfit.

Consisting of vocalist/guitarist Tom, bassist Jack, and drummer Angus, The Tangents is a band letting their music do all the talking so there is not a lot of background we can share. Tonight is a very vocal declaration of their potential rich sound and already strong songwriting. It is also a flavoursome slice of infectious rock ‘n’ roll and indie pop with a tasty strain of late seventies/early eighties power pop in its contagious stroll.

With its theme of a relationship break up seeded in a split experienced by Tom, the song opens with tenacious drums springing from a sonic mist, the plaintive tones of Tom and the emotive strokes of his guitar quickly adding their presence. Soon into its catchy canter, the already potent beats of Angus punch and jab, enjoyably resonating on ears as Jack’s bass adds more melancholic hues to the swinging gait of the track.

There is a slight mod like essence to the encounter too, especially across its boisterous chorus, which adds to its enterprising and increasingly rousing character. Together, it all makes for a proposition which may be just one song but if matched and built upon ahead is the first sign of a band with the ability to provoke much broader spread attention.

Tonight is released May 27th.

Upcoming live dates:

01/06/2017 – The Venue, Derby (tour)

03/06/2017 – The Leadmill, Sheffield (tour)

08/06/2017 – The Church, Leeds (tour)

17/06/2017 – The Parish, Huddersfield (tour)

22/06/2017 – The Engine Shed, Lincoln (tour)

29/06/2017 – The Shed, Leicester (tour)

30/06/2017 – The Maze, Nottingham (tour)

https://www.thetangents.co.uk/     https://www.facebook.com/thetangentsuk    https://twitter.com/thetangentsuk

Pete RingMaster 25/05/2017
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Seraya Young – Peace, Love and Understanding

Seraya Young has one of those voices which is may be best described as haunting the imagination. Its harmonic caresses are simply an instinctive seducing of ears and appetite and though fresh to our ears, our proof of that claim comes with her new single Peace, Love and Understanding, a track which kisses the senses like a warm exotic pool of water shimmering with a surface of suggestion.

Born in South Africa before moving to Australia at a relatively early age, Seraya was already lost to the beauty of music at the age of 5. Her mother made that realisation when finding her playing Love is a Beautiful Song, her father’s favourite track, on the organ, her daughter having to stand up to play because she could not reach the pedals otherwise. Those seeds have truly blossomed over the years; singing in church choirs and beginning to write her own songs as a teen leading in time to her recording her own solo work as well as collaborating with numerous artists and performing in the likes of Australia, the UK and US, India and Asia.

Taken from her well-received EP, I Left My Heart in Africa, released this past January, Peace, Love and Understanding is a song looking at “the cycles in life, generations, society, culture, the universe.” Keys rise with radiating elegance first, harmonic sunspots breaking around them as beats enticingly throb. The keys continue to spread, casting a weave of melodic reflection around the beguiling tones of Seraya, her voice bold whilst cradling ears in a hugging evocation of word and emotion matched by broader harmonies floating around like tempting pollen.

It is a naturally infectious affair, a proposition which as suggested persistently preys on the imagination pretty much from the first listen. Peace, Love and Understanding is not the style of music we would normally take under our wing but from its opening caress, pleasure was truly stoked.

Peace, Love and Understanding is released June 3rd.

https://serayaonline.com/    https://www.facebook.com/serayayoung    https://twitter.com/SerayaOnline

https://serayayoung.bandcamp.com/track/peace-love-and-understanding

Pete RingMaster 25/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Loom – Self Titled

Photo by Kurt Fairbairn

With quite simply raw rock ‘n’ roll nurturing its heart, the debut album from UK band Loom takes ears through every shade of punk rock you can imagine within its ten track confines. It is an adventure which has the imagination fired up, ears burning with ardour, and aggressive tendencies bubbling to the surface in a striking and rousing incitement of a self-titled proposal. Each song as suggested reveals a new aspect in its furious landscape yet brews a united character distinct to a band and release which just commands attention.

Leamington Spa hailing, the trio of Tarik Badwan, Matt Marsh, and Joshua Fitzgerald took little time in attracting ears and praise with their early releases including a pair of well-received EPs within their first year. The second of 2013 featured six covers of songs from the strongest inspirations for the band in its early days, The Jesus Lizard, Bad Brains, Pixies, GG Allin, Misfits, and Warsaw. Alongside the other encounters, it sparked support from the likes of Zane Lowe and Daniel P Carter at BBC Radio 1as well as laying the first steps in a springboard for Loom live to support The Rolling Stones at Hyde Park and tour the UK and Germany with artists such as Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, Queen Kwong, and Turbowolf.

The band’s first album is not slow in suggesting those influences in its multi-flavoured roar, as mentioned each song distinct from the next but there is a vein of unique Loom-ness running through all which we would suggest goes beyond the cohesion of aggression suggested by its press release. It opens up with Lice, a sonic itch you just cannot scratch enough to escape from. Its initial glaze to an instantly robust sound has a gothic/indie rock spicing, coming over like a blend of Leitmotiv and The Victorian English Gentlemens Club before its grouchy rock ‘n’ roll instincts burst free. It is a glorious nagging of the senses and imagination taking magnetic twists along its contagious enmity of sound and attitude.

The great start continues as firstly Hate imposingly shimmers with electronic radiance upon grunge bred antipathy to be followed by the rousing exploits of Get A Taste. There is a whiff of Pere Ubu for these ears to the first song but a thicker Nirvana like causticity to its nature and again niggling potency. Embracing garage punk confrontation too, the track stirs ears and appetite with ease, a triumph matched by its successor with its old school punk meets seventies garage rock growl as demandingly catchy as it is openly crotchety.

Grunge colludes with post punk for the feistily prowling Leopard, guitars winding spicy tendrils lined with delicious discord around ears as rhythms reveal a rapacious nature to their drive before Salt entangles the imagination in a fusion of Joy Division post punk and the irritable punk rock of The Stooges with just a tang of psych rock bewitchment. It is an enthralling mix opening new aspects with each passing flick of a chord and sonic detour yet throughout a fluid tart snarl never deviating from its quarrel.

Seasick bawls as its stalks ears with predacious intent straight after; indie rock merging with raw hardcore ill-temper in a track which steals the passions within seconds. Vocals are as unpredictable and instinctively volatile as the sonic flames cast by the guitar and indeed the rhythmic jabbing around them. With the bass a brooding threat within the tempestuous joy crowding and seducing ears, the track makes a big play for best track glory but is quickly challenged by the muggy grunge venting of Bleed On Me and eclipsed by the glorious dark deeds of the band’s latest single, Nailbender. The latter is a compelling caliginous seduction of gothic and punk metal; like Type O Negative fused with Descendents and 1919 yet still emerging as something unique and gripping to Loom.

The punk grouse of Barbed Wire grabs something from all decades of punk since the sixties whilst in finishing up the album Slowly Freezing Heart crawls across the senses in a kaleidoscope of sonic toxicity and shadow loaded rhythms united with vocal psychosis. Both tracks are treats greed gets the better of composure over while bringing one superb album to a memorable and rousing end. Listening to Loom you get the feeling that the band creates on instinct, not searching for a sound but letting it find them and infusing their music with its own unique character. The album reminds of numerous artists across its riveting body but never comes over as anything other than the offspring of Loom, the first of many more belligerently sculpted and physically visceral gems we hope and suspect.

The Loom album is released May 19th via Silent Cult across most stores.

https://www.facebook.com/Loomband/    https://twitter.com/loomband

Pete RingMaster 17/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright