Rhyn – Absence EP

Rhyn Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

With an emotive potency to match a rich tapestry of sound, the Absence EP from British alternative rock quartet Rhyn, is an encounter which simply makes ears stand up and pay attention. That is merely on the first play, subsequent listens revealing new depths and imagination which ensures it becomes an increasingly impressive proposal. It starts with a bang, mellows out into a less forceful but certainly engaging seduction before offering a song which simply ingrains itself in thoughts and emotions. Absence is a release which warrants persistent attention offering accumulating rewards in return.

Formed in 2010, Rhyn hails from Buckinghamshire and initially emerged as the trio of lead vocalist/pianist Chris Black, guitarist/vocalist Guy Johnston, and bassist Dan Marr. After the release of their first demo, the band expanded to four, going through many drummers until finding in 2012 the right one to stabilise the line-up in Rhys Coombs. Video/single Finite Bodies sparked an increase of attention with its release in 2014, the band feverishly backing it live across London before last year heading into the studio with producer Jason Wilson (You Me At Six, Fightstar, We Are The Ocean) to record the Absence EP. Luring comparisons in different ways to bands such as Biffy Clyro, Muse, and Nirvana, the foursome show with their latest encounter that their sound has its own individual character too, one unafraid to roar or sombrely explore emotive reflections.

Rhyn Cover Artwork_RingMaster ReviewThe EP opens with the rousing incitement of Elegy. Instantly a wall of eager riffs and punchy rhythms descend on ears, stirring up an appetite which is only increased by the great vocal drama and expression of Black as well as the unpredictable nature of the music around him. It is easy to understand the Muse references as an imposing rhythmic shuffle colludes with a web of guitar courted by captivating bass predation. Managing to be aggressive and experimental in a single moment, a raw seducing aligned to boisterous rock ‘n’ roll in another, and that is just a couple of aspects of the gripping and inventive landscape of the song, it has the imagination enthralled and ears fascinated from start to finish; it the kind of majestic anthem which bands are marked by.

The following Fall Away is equally energetic but with a mellower climate to its emerging croon. The keys of Black lay an emotive hand on ears as rhythms again find a skittish quality to their bait, whilst vocals once more impressively bring the heart of the song out, Johnston as potent as Black. Such the potency of its predecessor, the song was bound to slip a touch for personal tastes yet its melodic elegance and sonic craft leaves only a rich enjoyment which is echoed by Finite Bodies straight after. Keys lay a classically coloured coaxing before ears from its first breath, guitar and vocals adding their emotional hues into the embrace swiftly after. There is a fire to the song even then though which simmers and bursts into bolder life as it broadens its almost volatile nature and boldness.

Victory reinforces the satisfaction gained so far into its almost prowling incitement of ears, providing another surge of sonic theatre and emotive angst in thick flames of sound. It too is seamless in its merging of calmer explorations and feisty eruptions, spawning a catchiness which proves to be a constant in the band’s songs and has the listener as fully involved as the creativity breeding each encounter within Absence.

A slow burner that only becomes more persistent with every listen; it is unavoidably over shadowed by the outstanding might of The Only Place. The best track on the release, its opens with a croon of celestial keys and harmonic anguish which again draws swift thoughts of Muse. A rhythmically sparked energy slowly brews from that first breath too, erupting from a sombre sigh into a contagion of hooks and a melodic roar driven by the rich tones of Black. Imagining Faith No More doing a Bond theme is a hint to the scintillating chorus and thick weave of textures at play on ears and imagination. The likes of Porcupine Tree and The Palms equally can be suggested as a clue to the superb arousal of the senses, but again what emerges is something simply and masterfully Rhyn.

Concluded by the pleasing acoustic serenade of Believe In Ghosts with Black simply magnetic, the Absence EP is the declaration of a band ready to climb up into richer spotlights of attention. From its first moment to last, the release compels attention giving full enjoyment in return, with two particular moments which as good as leave ears awe struck.

The Absence EP is available from February 19th @ http://music.rhyn.eu/album/absence

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Pete RingMaster 18/02/2016

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Massacres – Brutus

Massacres Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

With a sound that does a fair job on the senses replicating the suggestiveness of their name, UK hardcore quartet Massacres have announced their introduction in ferocious and heftily enjoyable style with debut EP Brutus. The four-track fury is a merciless tempest of hardcore antagonism and belligerence loaded with punk rock hooks and a rock ‘n’ roll breeding which just compels ears and incites the body. Bolder things may be heard this year but for thoroughly exhilarating and fresh imaginative hostility, Massacres hits the floor running with Brutus.

Formed in the Spring of 2015, Massacres swiftly set about creating a collection of ravenous tracks before unleashing them on the live scene to increasingly fevered and acclaiming responses. Soon references were understandably offered to the likes of Every Time I Die, John Coffey, Pissed Jeans, and Cancer Bats; spices easy to bring up whilst listening to Brutus which the band began working on last summer. Uniting in Stakeout Studio with producer Jason Wilson (Reuben, Fightstar, The Ghost Of A Thousand), the London quartet emerged with an EP that barges into ears, bullies the senses, and ignites a keen appetite for more.

Massacres Cover Artwork_RingMaster ReviewOne Of The Boys launches at ears first, a nagging sonic scything from the strings of guitarist Kris Mayzee colluding with the similarly stabbing vocal spikes of Dave Rogers as the track gets a foothold in the psyche straight away. Soon venomously prowling the senses with urgency and grouchy invention, bruising intensity and burrowing hooks aligning for a potent lure, the song irritably stomps like a mix of Every Time I Die and Reuben with the additional animosity of Cancer Bats yet equally Norwegian band Shevils and British noise fiends The St Pierre Snake Invasion are nudged into thoughts to describe the predominantly individual flavour of the song and indeed subsequent release.

It is a rousing and increasingly addictive offering powerfully backed by the rawer viciousness of Death Knell. Again hooks and grooves are a persistent tonic in the volatile climate and character of the track; grooves especially spicy and insatiably alluring as they wind around the pleasing vocal variety shown by Rogers. The bass of Martin Walker is a bestial incitement, though it too develops an irresistible swing at times as it bridges the scorching temptation of guitars and the insistent brutality of Andy Sartori’s rhythmic swings.

New single Everything I Want To Do Is Illegal rages next; exploding off of a singular tendril of guitar bait with robust rhythms, fiery grooves, and the uncompromising emotive squalls of Rogers. As Max Raptor like infectious as it is The Ghost of A Thousand like choleric, the track is a dynamo of energy, hook loaded enticement, and unbridled emotion with the band giving their virulent all in craft and arousing intensity.

To The Victor, The Spoils brings the release to a close by crowding in on ears with a controlled barrage of predatory rhythms and vocal crabbiness amidst intrusive sonic enterprise. Within the stormy confrontation though, kinder melodies hang in the shadows where equally a catchy gait lurks, both waiting to escape the combative swell of sound and discontent. It is a intent that never occurs as such but all the time they add inescapable imagination to the unforgiving animus of the song.

Brutus is a strong and, more importantly, thoroughly riveting entrance by Massacres on the UK hardcore scene, an area of ferocious rock ‘n’ roll easy to see the band growing to be a driving force of if they fulfil their potential.

The Brutus EP is available through all platforms on from February 5th.

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Pete RingMaster 04/02/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Brightlight City – Adventures EP

BrightlightCity2015

The Adventures EP is a proposition which might not be going to set the rock world ablaze but with three tracks of virulent alternative/melodic rock, the new release from Brit tunesmiths Brightlight City is still likely to be a greedily devoured feel good encounter. It is one of those incitements easy to turn to for an energetic and feistily contagious time. It is not changing the landscape of rock ‘n’ roll but definitely the release gives it a healthy dose of feisty enterprise.

The Surrey quintet began in 2014, swiftly releasing a trio of songs and embarking on mini tours across the UK. Inspirations come from the likes of Hundred Reasons, Million Dead, Foals, Yourcodenameis:milo, At the Drive-In, Refused, Biffy Clyro, and Jimmy Eat World, spices evident in the band’s debut EP Breaking Straight Lines which was recorded with producer Jason Wilson (You Me At Six, Fightstar, We Are The Ocean, Reuben) and released last October. Now the band unveils its successor, Adventures, which was also recorded with Wilson. As its title hints at, the new EP explores new aspects to the band’s sound; the band recently commenting on the release with “Adventures is an EP, as the title suggests, that takes the listener on an adventure; stories of late nights, life, death, love and society all set against the instrumental back drop of a massive alternative rock sound.”

Adventures Artwork iTunes    The release opens with new single The Finish Line, and instantly sparkling guitar bait is sunning itself in the imagination as rhythms provide a sturdy and darker company. The vocals of Jamie Giarraputo similarly are a warm and vibrant invitation, nestling perfectly in the weave of enterprise cast by guitarists Justin Giarraputo and Jono Staunton. The track strolls along with an endearing quality and a catchiness which really sparks in the addictive chorus whilst the resonating bass of Dan Stubberfield adds further potent magnetism alongside the punchy beats of Ben Bell which punctuate all the hooks and melodies with relish.

The following I’m Only Good At Adventures backs up the impressive start to the EP with its own infectious swing and dance on ears. Once more hooks and melodies seduce, though with less impacting bait than found in its predecessor. Nevertheless the song is an easy to consume and get involved with proposal of rock ‘n’ roll warming up ears and appetite for the outstanding closing track.

Reaction is superb, from its opening earthy groove and dirty riffs attention seizing bait which never loosens its grip even when slipping into a slow caress of voice and melodies. It is just the teaser though for the contagion to follow, bass and beats prowling with a glint in their eyes as guitars spin a web of imaginative melody clad temptation. Vocally Jamie Giarraputo is just as magnetic, his delivery carrying a gentle swagger to match the bass groove and sonic devilry seducing ears and imagination. Jimmy Eat World is mentioned as an inspiration and there is no escaping the similar potency of hooks and enterprise within the song to the US band’s greatest moments.

The track is irresistible and brings an excellent release to a masterful close. Listening to the Adventures EP, it does feel like Brightlight City is still searching for their truly unique sound. When it happens though and if songs carry the same qualities discovered on this new encounter, it is hard to imagine anything stopping a global success.

The Adventures EP is out digitally from May 11th and physically on the 15th May.

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RingMaster 11/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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I, The Lion – Run

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With a creative roar to their music to match the suggestiveness of their name, UK rock band I, The Lion have earned the reputation for not only being one of the hardest working live bands around right now but for creating tracks which increasingly captivate attention. The Cheltenham trio are doing it again with the release of new EP Run, a four-track stomp which pleases on the first listen and continues to impress from thereon in. Tagged as post punk but with a sound more like a raw breed of alternative rock, with a healthy edge and whisper of Reuben to it, band and new release come flushed with potential and a fiery enterprise showing why the strong buzz around the band.

Formed in 2011, I, The Lion as mentioned have made a potent mark on the British rock live scene, undertaking numerous tours and sharing stages with the likes of Gallows, DZ Deathrays, Three Trapped Tigers, Talons, and Emp!re amongst many. Through releases too the band has made a steadily increasing mark, their first single released barely a month after the band emerged, stirring up over a thousand downloads whilst debut EP Tides and Tales emulated and surpassed its success soon after. Now the band is unleashing the Run EP, a proposition recorded with Jason Wilson (You Me At Six, Reuben, Fightstar) at Stakeout Studios in London. I, The Lion have already sparked up potent anticipation for its unveiling through lead single Hold Strong, a track debuted it at the 2000 Trees Festival where they it gave out for free, all of its copies going in under 30 seconds after their successful performance.

With song lyrics built around a central theme “of trying to get away and create something new and real”, as marked by the EP’s title, the encounter opens with that recent single. Hold Strong Run EP Cover - FINALswiftly lures in ears and focus through its laid back but jabbing rhythmic opening, increasing the bait as the almost dirty riffs of Elliot Withers add to the broadening shadowed scenery of the song. Vocalist Chris Evans brings his strong tones to the emerging narrative of the song next, as well as a great dark bassline which sparks another twinge of appetite for the already intriguing encounter. Harmonies across the band spread additional spice but cannot help the song find the spark it needs which leaves it a little flat initially. This is resolved once an unexpected lull triggers a new invention in the song though, vocals and melodies a melancholic yet vibrant lure leading to a raging enterprise of aggression and tenacity. From here on in the swinging rhythms of drummer Nathan Priday are virulently contagious as is the delicious hook which repeats with insatiable strength across the remainder of the EPs excellent start.

Not to be outdone, the following Icarus reveals its own addictive lure from its first breath, the hook inescapable bait setting up ears and imagination perfectly for the feisty endeavour of the song. That opening temptation expands its call with a more flouncy enterprise but without losing its potency as a grizzly bassline and expressive vocals joins its magnetic persuasion. Never really relaxing or exploding, though it too offers a tantalising respite mid-way, the song makes a good first impression but simply grows in weight and success with subsequent listens, that Reuben essence mentioned earlier a definite plus.

Man Made of Mice strolls along with a pop punk melodic colouring to its sturdy and imposing stride, bass and guitar aligning for a reserved but voracious proposal within the muscular frame of Priday’s rhythms and the straight talking vocals. Flushed with another infectious groove, the track again is one which maybe does not erupt as it hints at but leaves ears and appetite seriously contented before Bonny Island brings it all to a heftily satisfying close. As with all the songs, its first touch is a decisive and persuasive tempting, riffs and ragged hooks courting a dramatic rhythmic coaxing which immediately holds attention and intrigue. Arguably again the band let the potency of the start slip slightly but are soon building a commanding and fascinating web of sonic and rhythmic adventure with unpredictable and melodically soaked twists.

Bottom-line is, Run is a thoroughly enjoyable and persistently enticing encounter from a band with the potential to light up the British rock scene like a Reuben or Biffy Clyro.

Run is available from February 9th @ http://ithelion.bandcamp.com/

http://www.ithelion.com/

RingMaster 09/02/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Rhoda May – Sessions

Rhoda May Online Promo Shot

    The info sheet accompanying the promo for Sessions, the debut EP from UK progressive rock instrumentalists Rhoda May, waxes lyrical about band and it has to be said that after being washed over by its absorbing potency and imaginative aural narratives the release offers, you can only agree with rather than doubt the claims made. The six track release is a magnetic slice of sonic majesty, a sextet of songs which tease and ignite the imagination without ever over doing anything. The tracks tempt and hint rather than paint exact pictures and with an uncluttered sinewed beauty only seduce the imagination and passions to a full acceptance and hunger for EP and band.

    The Surrey trio of guitarist Will Pain, bassist Andy Page, and drummer Mark Sanger originally conceived the idea of Rhoda May mid-2012 but it was not until last year that the long-time friends officially formed the band after a local venue promoter who happened to overhear the band rehearsing asked them to support UK hip hop/metal pioneers Senser. From that debut show the threesome has gone on to support the likes of Heights, Freeze The Atlantic, and Three Trapped Tigers, all the time increasing their emerging presence. Their first release consists of the 347 and 589 live sessions recorded with producer Jason Wilson (We Are The Ocean, Reuben, Dinosaur Pile Up) and James Kirk respectively. All tracks were recorded as live takes for a series of live videos filmed & directed by Emma Dalesman and now get their appearance together as an EP release, six songs which cast a mouth-watering adventure of modern rock.

     All the tracks upon Sessions are simply numbered which allows the listener to interpret the songs without any prompting or Rhoda May - Cover Artworknudging which even a song title can do; the slices of absorbing creative invention the only persuasion  upon thoughts and emotions. As opener #3 strolls into view with the guitar of Pain jangling seductively around the ear as the gentle rhythmic incitement of Sanger coaxes equal attention, there is an instantaneous connection as a familiarity and mesmeric bait washes the senses. The bass of Page offers a no less potent lure, again with an initial reserve and provocative tone which sparks attention. There is a surf rock essence to the melodic guitar sculpting throughout which is an easy appetiser but it is merely one spice in the melodic rock enticement emerging tantalisingly. Overall the track is a flight through rugged yet radiant climes and textures, never so thick in sounds and structures to threaten or slow its fluidity and riveting adventure but using the simplicity that a mere three instruments can produce to transfix and almost belie the undoubted craft and intensively shaped enterprise.

    It is a masterful start soon equalled by the scorched sonic landscape of #4, a track which smoulders with heavy rock rapaciousness whilst conjuring a melodic luminance which sways and bewitches like a fire bred temptress. As with its predecessor the piece is unafraid to slow its muscular power to offer tender superbly crafted enticements or once comfortable licking and teasing the passions to rile things up and open the gates to another surge of sonically forging metallic endeavour.

     Both #7 and #5 continue the powerfully impressive entrance of release and band, the first an evocative melodically poetic piece of predacious rock which delivers a slight eighties goth rock breath to the guitar whilst the latter is a scuzz kissed fuzz rock persuasion to eagerly indulge in and imaginatively contemplate. As mentioned earlier there is at times a familiarity which coats elements and passages of tracks, this pair being no exception, but it only adds to the strength and colour of the tracks as they spark mind and passions with their delicious bait and rigorous creative charm.

      #8 takes the listener by the hand and leads them into a compelling soar through weather battered rocky terrain lit by melodic beauty and invention which again simply ignites the senses and imagination with sublime ease. Rhoda May perform musical alchemy at times across the EP and especially within this engrossing and mentally invigorating venture. Its triumph is almost shaded by the excellent closing track #9. From its mischievously nagging entrance of jagged riffs and alluring sixties bred guitar enchantment the track expands to build an emotionally textured soundscape, drums and bass crafting heavy dark infused skies beneath which emotive and provocative mastery urges thoughts to build their own adventure. It is a scintillating end to an outstanding debut.

     It is fair to say that Pain primarily grabs attention with his guitar skill and invention but do not assume that Page and Sanger are part players, the trio converging as Rhoda May to create something which needs and exploits every element to create an impressive stunning sound. With thoughts of bands such as Deftones, KingBathmat, Palms, and early Cure amongst others showing their prompts throughout but never to overwhelm something that is original and fascinating, Sessions gives evidence of Rhoda May’s PR claim that they could be “the next band to nationally break.”

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9/10

RingMaster 06/01/2014

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