Crawling and romancing the shadows with Gnostic Gorilla

Hailing from Toronto, Canada, Gnostic Gorilla is a dark electronic project which wears unpredictability as easily as imagination in its ear gripping sound. Recently we had the chance and pleasure to talk about the solo project with creator Dean Mason, exploring its origins and music amongst many things as well as picking at Dean’s thoughts about music in general.

Hello Dean and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Thank you. My pleasure!

Can you first introduce the project and give us some background to how it all started?

Sure. As a teenager, I began exploring the idea of recording music. I was of course a major day tripper…I mean…day dreamer. Hahahahaha! So I ventured out to record two songs, Dark Hallway and Golgotha for a single. I had some excellent musicians join me in the studio (Dave Davidson, Tony Bourdeau, Shaun Saunders and Chris Byrnes) and with the help of my parents I released the 45 rpm under the so called label name “Lonely Ghost Productions”. That was my first experiment with recording music. I left it at that and went to school to find some sort of career. In 2012, I returned to recording, as a hobby and recorded exclusively electronic music with a dark bent. (Gothic/Dark Wave/Industrial) I released a few singles on iTunes etc. and then in 2015 I released the first album (St. Basil’s Asylum) using the project name “Gnostic Gorilla”. Before that I was using the project name “The Lonely Ghost Project” but that changed once I learnt there was an American band called “The Lonely Ghost Parade”. I wanted to avoid confusion. So that’s a brief history of “Gnostic Gorilla”.

What inspired the name “Gnostic Gorilla”?

As I mentioned earlier, initially my project was called “The Lonely Ghost Project” but I changed it to “Gnostic Gorilla”. I had a song called Gnostic Gorilla (now renamed Eye for a Lie) and I decided to use that name for the project. The idea behind the name is a sort of convergence of two world views: the religious ‘creation’ story and Darwin’s theory of evolution. “Gnostic” means “knowledge” or “to know”. That is a reference to the “tree of knowledge”. Obviously, “Gorilla” is in reference to the idea that we evolved from some sort of ‘ape’ species (not specifically the Gorilla of course) and here we are. “Gnostic Gorilla” is not about Gnosticism as some may think.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the project and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

In many ways a lot of it was allowing the creative process to dictate where I wanted the project to go and how I wanted to sound. I started off doing simply instrumental/soundtrack type recordings. Then I decided to try and do a complete song with lyrics/vocals. The first song I did as part of this new electronic music pursuit was a song called Requiem for the Prophet of Doom which was a tribute to Peter Steele of Type O Negative who passed away in 2010. There were two versions of that track. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEnSgqaI3JA & https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0N7Uxzg7ac

That was released under the name “Dean Mason of The Lonely Ghost Project”, as singles. Soon after this, I began to really become more interested in a sound that was more industrial and Gothic or Dark Wave and eventually after a few more singles I recorded St. Basil’s Asylum which is now rereleased by Cleopatra Records. Most of my music has been industrial or Gothic since then.

Do the same sparks still drive the project or have they evolved over time and equally since your early days, how would you say your sound has specifically evolved?

Sort of continuing on from the previous question…yeah…there was definitely an ‘evolution’ of sorts. I look back on what I did in 2012 and some of it doesn’t send me far, with the exception of Nietzsche’s Cyborg. I will always be proud of that song. It was a game changer. It’s on St. Basil’s Asylum even though it was recorded in the fall of 2012 and St. Basil’s Asylum was released in 2015 and then rereleased by Cleopatra Records in 2018. But back on track here, I guess for me, I became more interested in an abrasive and weird industrial sound. (Psalm for the Lost was actually more of a retro Goth/New Wave type deal though) My latest album, Freak’s Mind is in my opinion one of my strongest in many ways. The next album to be released by Cleopatra Records (Shaman Rave) will blow your socks off! Promise!

Has it been more of an organic movement of sound or more you deliberately wanting to try new things?

A bit of both… I don’t want to be boxed into a specific genre to be honest. So, I go through phases where I really like menacing and weird industrial and then other times I prefer a more velvety Goth or Doom Psychedelic type mood in my music. I have been inspired not only by other artists but also by some soundtracks like, the soundtrack for Sinister which is absolutely mind numbing! So sometimes I watch a movie like that or like Queen of the Damned and it gives me inspiration. So, yeah, there is an evolution of sorts but I never deviate too far from being a dark electronic act.

Presumably there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on your music but your approach to and ideas about creating and playing music?

Well, one of my first inspirations would be Gary Numan. I mean, I was a huge KISS fan when I was still in diapers hahaha …but Numan was the one that inspired me to consider doing my own thing in music. That said, I don’t write and record in the style of Numan. I owe more to Ministry, Skinny Puppy and Rammstein as far as recording style goes. I also am very much inspired by Peter Steele of Type O Negative and Jim Morrison of The Doors, especially for their unique lyrical style. Did you know that the first time the term ‘Goth or Gothic’ was used in reference to a rock band was when someone did a review of The Doors, the day after (or close anyway) that Morrison had met Andy Warhol? Anyway…I owe a lot of gratitude to Nash The Slash for being an inspiration as an indie artist as well.

Is there a certain process to your songwriting?

I usually begin a track with a general idea of the kind of mood/style I want to pursue. Then, usually, the song ends up being something totally different than want I first imagined. I usually start with either synth riffs/loops and/or beats/drum patterns and build from there. Kind of difficult to explain how a song evolves and usually I look back and think, “how did I even come up with this”?

… And where do you draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

Many of my songs address the human struggle. I never write ‘love’ songs or ‘sex in the corvette’ songs…there are ample of those so …why compete right? I usually write in sort of ‘mystical’ story form. I use a lot of imagery and I allow the listener/reader (of lyrics) to decide for themselves what it means to them, even though I may have a specific idea in mind. I often use religious imagery and also imagery of ‘battles’ or ‘war’ but not in the sense that they are LITERALLY about armed combat. The imagery of ‘battle’ is more of an emotional/psychological journey of that inner struggle. I use a lot of religious imagery, but I don’t push ANY sort of religious point of view…for or against. Again, I let people decide for themselves what any song could mean. I address the issue of mental illness and depression and even the tendency for despair. I don’t encourage ‘despair’ but that experience of wondering where there is hope is quite universal. As well, I often, in veiled language, address the ‘tribalism’ that we humans seem to cling to. I have a real personal distaste for hatred of any kind and the world is full of that. Religious people bashing and rejecting others for being ‘different’ or of the ‘wrong tribe’ and all the bigotry and racism and all the phobias that still exist in a so called ‘evolved’ modern world. That ‘tribalism’ isn’t just from those of a religious persuasion but it also exists among ,many ‘atheists’ and ‘secularists’ who can be just as hateful towards those of the ‘other tribe’. We just don’t know how to leave each other be do we?! Hatred of any kind is for the birds. Wait…not even the birds want it!

Give us some background to your latest release.

The latest release is Freak’s Mind. It’s very abrasive and weird and even at times ‘gothadelic’ (a term coined by Peter Steele by the way). That album is the album that wasn’t supposed to be. I never really wanted to record anything new but one song at a time, and I ended up recording an album’s worth of dark wave/industrial/Gothic madness and I’m really proud of this album. It touches on all those subjects I mentioned earlier. Womb To The Tomb is one of my favourites on that album. It’s a strange combo of wild 60’s psychedelic with raging industrial sounds. Veil is a powerful song, which was recorded in 2013 actually. It’s a good album and I’m not the type that easily says things like that about my own music.

Could you give us some insight to the themes behind it and its songs?

Womb to The Tomb is about the cycle of life more or less, but also looks at the life of a corrupt village and all its citizens, including the powerful who take advantage and the victims who are taken advantage of. It’s kind of inspired by modern day events, without being specific. Chaos Frankenstein is sort of a ‘mystical’ telling of conflict and chaos and suffering and deception. Finally, (I won’t dissect every song) Freak’s Mind, the title track, is more or less about someone struggling with some sort of psychological or emotional turmoil.

Tell us about the live side to the band?

At present, Gnostic Gorilla is not planning on any live shows. I’d need to lasso a bunch of musicians to do that and I don’t see it happening. I don’t think so anyway…Maybe a one off someday.

It is not easy for any new act/artist to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands/artists?

You’re so right. It’s not easy. I mean, as far as having an impact is concerned. It’s a different world… a different industry and there are many factors that make it very difficult to make a dent anywhere, even locally…especially if you’re in a bigger city. Technology and the age of communication (social media) make it so that anyone can set themselves up and do music and even videos and put it out there. It makes for a VERY clogged reality in cyberspace. There is SO much out there. Everyone wants to be considered the next big thing…Fair game. But here’s the thing, it’s all been done. After KISS and Sabbath, and Manson and Depeche Mode and Numan and NIN, Slipknot, Cradle of Filth, Madonna, Lady Gaga, Ice T, Eminem, Shaggy, Run DMC etc. …how does one come up with a unique style? I don’t want to be a pessimist but let’s be realistic. It’s VERY difficult to make a dent because it’s almost impossible to snap people out of an oversaturated “yawn…I’ve seen it all before” mindset. You can’t impress people easily. You can barely shock people unless you are involved in some sort of controversy or are pretty like a Barbie/Ken doll. Legends/pioneers are no longer being made and I know that would piss a lot of people off to hear that, but it’s true. As for my own situation, I must confess that as I proud Canadian, I am very unimpressed with the way I’ve been treated by the reps/labels in Canada. I have a label deal with Cleopatra Records (LA) for two albums, a deal with KL-Dark Records in Germany and Nowhere Now Records in Australia and have never even received a reply from the Canadian labels I sent music to. Kind of disappointing but I guess they’re all waiting for the second coming or RUSH or Justin Bieber or Gordon Lightfoot.

How has the internet and social media impacted on your project to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the project grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands/artists struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

As I said before, the world has changed dramatically in more ways than one. The internet and social media have forever changed MANY things, not just music. Look at what it’s done to the world of politics! (not always for the better) Even the Pope has a presence on social media. Hahahaha. But more specifically related to the music industry…it’s a mixed bag I suppose. It’s great to promote one’s music/art but also you’re not the only one doing it. Millions are doing it. With regards to the reality of ‘streaming’ though, as an example…that too is a combination of blessing and curse. What’s happening is people don’t feel like buying music is even a concept. It’s not their fault. It’s the way things evolved. (There’s that word again…hahahaha) Younger people grew up knowing nothing else and so, even the concept of music as art is kind of challenged. It’s rarely seen as ‘art’ and just part of the regular noise and scenery of cyberspace all mixed in with the latest ‘app’. It’s like music is there for the taking the way fruit on trees is there for the taking…it’s just a part of the way life goes. It’s all there to snatch and rarely pay much more than a standard monthly fee or something and have unlimited music. Hey, I do it myself, so I’m not criticizing. Also, it needs to be said, with reference to struggling artists: there are also different organizations that promise ‘hi-fi mega stardom’ for a fee! Some of these take advantage of artists, even some of the big labels have jumped on that bandwagon. Don’t get me wrong, there are some decent, honest organizations that genuinely want to assist struggling artists, but there are also a lot of vultures out there cashing in on Wendy and Charlie’s dreams of “making it”. I guess in the end, like anything else, it’s what you do with it right? Maybe it’s just another challenge for artists to be creative, even with regards to promoting and marketing.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

It is I who thank you! All I can say is that if you are a struggling artist…be true to the art, to being creative. I know that sounds like hippie bullshit, but it’s true. As soon as your goal is to become a ‘celebrity’ you’re setting yourself up for deception. Don’t dream about being a ‘star’. Instead, be creative and express yourself and be true to yourself…regardless of who does and who doesn’t approve. The rest will follow because in the end, authenticity speaks louder than the need to be ‘worshipped’. That’s what I believe.

Explore Gnostic Gorilla further @ https://www.facebook.com/gnosticgorilla/

Also grab your copy of the Various Artists Compilation album, Nowhere Now Volume 2 on Nowhere Now Records @ https://nowherenowrecords.bandcamp.com/album/nowhere-now-volume-2    featuring Last Call (Heed The Drones) by Gnostic Gorilla

Pete RingMaster 12/04/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Living in the flames of Vaya

“Her spirit is screaming and blowing on the stage. She is the drums and her soul rises up through the sacred fire of music.”

This is a line from the Vaya biography on social media which sums up the creative and instinctive roar of the Canadian singer and band, and reason enough to find out more which we recently did with great thanks to the trio…

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started?

Victoria VAYA: Actual VAYA’s members Raphael, Philippe and me have met through this project step by step. First I met “by hazard” Raphaël through a “next door” music shop, when I had just moved into this area. The people talked about him, he is a good drummer so I contacted him. And Philippe joined us when the album was recorded and when we need to build a team for the live shows. I think he just answered to the music call. It was written. Then we are managing the stage from one year sharing the same powerful feeling for the rock music and eclectic colours if it.

RAPHAEL: Hi RingMaster, Victoria VAYA learned that I played the drums from a music store in Gland (CH). One day, she called me to record the first drums of VAYA. I never left since!

Have you been or are involved in other bands? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

Victoria VAYA: Yes I was. It was totally different. It was interesting but I was always feeling that is not my all expression in it. It was good experiences for the studio record part than the stage but I felt not complete. Now with VAYA, I really have so much pleasure to express all that animal and mystical energy through sounds and rhythms: it’s magic!

Philippe: Yes, actually I’m involved in 4 different bands: 1 funk, jazz, fusion band, 1 country blues folk band, of course Vaya and I’m starting a new jazz, salsa, samba band with another guitar player and we’re looking for other musicians too. 4 years ago, I played in a Celtic rock band and a blues rock band too. It’s very different than what I played in my former bands and in my actual bands but it’s interesting to combine those different styles and I always try to adapt myself in every situations.

RAPHAEL: I have been involved in many bands before. Now, I mainly focus on VAYA. Meeting other musicians with influences from all over the world has always been a positive and constructive impact on my drums’ play.

What inspired the band name?

Victoria VAYA:  AHAHAH I like this question. GOD? Or the Blow of it. As artists we just receive the flow of ideas around and translating it. So VAYA is the Legend of The White Wolf blowing on Earth. Ameridian people know more than us about the spirit of it but for sure it’s guiding and inspiring VAYA step by step. Something spiritual and for sure human.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Victoria VAYA: Specific Idea? I don’t know. We are guided between intuition, talent combined and lot of passion and work time. So our sound is colourful and the most important, authentic.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced and how would you say your sound has evolved over time?

Victoria VAYA: We are “Evolution” by defining human being. We are simply always bounded by sharing our musician souls everywhere in the world.

Philippe: Yes we evolved a lot, first we were more like a metal band, than we changed the style, we use more percussions and now we start by using keyboard and it brings a new sound of the band!

Victoria VAYA: OH VAYA has an interesting evolution and it’s probably why I’m stoked with it. 😀 The first step of the album was done with a French composer, then he has to quit and I have to continue. So arrived a Hungarian composer with a real good classical background and a good rocky spirit and he gave a lot of keys for the arrangements of VAYA tracks album. Then for the next step VAYA needed to find a powerful evolution to go on stage and it’s when VAYA met the volcanic Chilean blood of Sebastian, also with a real good academic background. So I mean VAYA is rich of differences and musicians souls

Philippe: When I was young, I was more inspired by hard-rock, heavy-metal, then I changed, I started listening, studying and playing jazz, after played more blues and now, I play so many kinds of music and I’m back to rock.

RAPHAEL: My drums are now stronger into the groove. I am happy about this, it is really for VAYA!

I have a nice memory of the recording of the first studio album. There was someone who directed the arrangements and told what I had to play. Sometimes, I had no idea what would be the final results! When I listened to this album, I was well surprised!

The live album is more representative of my own sound.

And that movement in sound and anything else has been more organic or deliberate?

Victoria VAYA: We still experienced things. No limits for music, it’s a big playground!

Philippe: Yeah, we always try to experiment new things, new sounds, new songs, new ideas, it depends in what mood we are!

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

Victoria VAYA: Poetry of Jim Morrison, visionary as David Bowie, psyche as Jimmy Hendrix, sensitive as Bjork.

Philippe: I always try to adapt myself, to play and compose songs depending of the different styles I play in every band.

Is there a process which generally guides the writing of songs?

Victoria VAYA: So I am actually on the composing roots. Could be change never know, I always send ideas and people catch it for developing it, that’s the sharing part. No process. Sometimes it’s a drum that will be the first step, sometimes lyrics or a guitar riff or a keyboard song. I am receiving it and managing it to put all together.

Philippe: I think when someone has an idea for a new song, he or she brings it to the band, then we listen to it, we talk about it and then we try to play it together the best we can and everybody’s free to give his own opinion to change something, or to improve it.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

Victoria VAYA: Everywhere.

Philippe: Sometimes when I’m home and I try to find something good, or when I’m outside, in the street, in the train or wherever, it can happen anytime in any places

Give us some background to your latest release.

Victoria VAYA: WOW, it will take too much time, just listen and discover our double album it will connect you to your deepest part.

How about some insight to the themes and premise behind it and its songs.

Victoria VAYA: Oh my Dear. So the biggest thing who’s giving to you power what is it? The law of Nature :)))))) Then second is: Human experiences/observations. And you do a bridge between them.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

Victoria VAYA: Both of it. For sample Biscuit and Friends are born on studio record. The arrangement of My little curl too…So a mix of it.

Philippe: Actually, we went once to a studio to record altogether and now, we’re working on new songs for the next album, so right now if we have ideas for new songs, we record it on our own on the computer.

RAPHAEL: I’d rather prefer to go into the studio prepared to win some time (and some money). Sometimes it could be interesting to develop a song in the studio. The song BLOW is a nice example.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably a favourite aspect of the band?

Victoria VAYA: Absolutely: it’s being true and powerful for giving a real good travel to you guys! 😉

Philippe: The favourite aspect is when we’re on stage, with a good sound and with an enthusiastic audience, when we all have so much fun!

RAPHAEL: a live show that you will remember. The voice is so powerful, and without any light shows. I am always surprised that the audience is thankful and go back home with a smile.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found?

Victoria VAYA: I am always surprised people liked our live show. First in Switzerland where we met each other; the public there is really difficult to “ seduce” with a new way of expressing music; but they liked the spirit of the sacred fire. And such a lovely warm welcome into our last East of Europe tour. It’s growing step by step but because public is really welcome and is clearly a part of our music, VAYA is continuing with them. I would like to take that opportunity to say again thank you for all your encouragements everywhere we have played.

Philippe: It’s really hard for every new band to get known! You have to keep playing as often as possible in many different places. And Yes everything can happen, if you work very hard, if you focus and believe in yourself and the band, great things can happen!

RAPHAEL: I have worked for years in order to meet the good people in the music business to get the trust in my projects. This is paying now.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it ultimately as a negative or positive?

Victoria VAYA: So Raphael is probably the right person to answer to that question

Philippe: Sometimes things go right and sometimes wrong, it’s not easy!

RAPHAEL: One day, I put the band on Instagram and someone discovered us from Canada. Zolla Productions is now in charge of our booking in Canada. It takes a lot of time to manage the social media, but I think this is essential nowadays to show people the development of VAYA.

Once again our big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Victoria VAYA: Come and share the sacred fire with us. VAYA VAYA.

Thank you Ringmaster!

Vaya are:

Victoria VAYA: songs writer, singer, drums and keyboard

Philippe: guitar and bass

Raphaël: Drums &Percussions

https://www.facebook.com/VAYA.Official/   https://www.vaya-official.com https://twitter.com/VAYA_official

Pete RingMaster 07/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Baronen & Satan – Why Does The Blood Never Stick To Your Teeth? / Satan Is A Lady

As each year passes it seems harder to find something truly unique to feast upon so those encounters which do carry that special character make a most striking impact and hopefully temptation. The sound of Swedish outfit Baronen & Satan magnificently fits that claim and hope, its nature a psyche twisting trespass and voice a senses searing incitement which together go to make one glorious seduction on body and imagination.

Though formed in 2014 after guitarist Philippe Jean-Piere Dominique Sainz met vocalist Linda Rydelius, the pair uniting in love and creativity once meeting, our introduction to Gothenburg hailing Baronen & Satan is now through Dirty Water Records USA and their releasing of the band’s new EP, Why Does The Blood Never Stick To Your Teeth? in tandem with the re-release of 2016 album Satan Is A Lady. It is a long overdue meeting as hindsight shows the band has been teasing attention across a horde of tracks and years but one we like so many others are greedily devouring. Completed by bassist Marie Bergkvist and drummer Stefan Young Sik Olsson earlier this year, Baronen & Satan create what we assumed has been self-penned as “Garagedeath”.  Whatever you call it, the Baronen & Satan sound is a wonderfully invasive yet flirtatious trespass of reverb grafted adventure conjured from a mix of garage and psych rock, garage punk, noise, and punk rock with plenty more teasing away in its predacious and haunting swamp thick sonic psychosis.

Produced by Jim Diamond (White Stripes, Dirt Bombs), Baronen & Satan’s new EP greedily consumes the senses from its first breath. Why Does The Blood Never Stick To Your Teeth? opens up with new single Elisa and instantly consumes ears in a tide of riffs and rhythms entangled in spicily melodic tendrils. As a bass grumble teases, beats fly with fevered energy, Sainz’s guitar weaving away with salacious grooves as the distinct and unique tones of Rydelius deliciously ‘whine’. Her presence almost steals all attention but with the devilish textures and enterprise at play around her, the whole song seduces in equal measure to get things flying.

The following Buttermilk Sky has a similar but fully individual presence and sound, its psych and garage rock bred rock ‘n’ roll an incitement to appetite and hips as it dances provocatively in ears. Its citric melodic spicing is less kind in the second track compared to its predecessor but just as alluring; the song offering a beefier intrusion taken to darker temptation yet again in the EP’s title track. With the swinging biting beats of Olsson rampant and Bergkvist’s bass sound gnarly, seduction is swift from personal tastes; add the sonic squall of Sainz and Rydelius hellish beauty in voice  and submission to the track’s rapacious rock ‘n’ roll is welcome slavery which the melodic toxicity with its tinge of Echo and The Bunnymen compounds.

All three tracks unite for one unwavering increasing addictive proposal to have us reeled in hook line and sinker; a triumph equally matched by last year’s album, Satan Is A Lady. It similarly needs mere seconds to tempt and begin brewing up a tight grip as opener Lady Creature lies its initial sonic nagging upon ears. Quickly the boisterous beats of Olsson descend and romp; the track bouncing around with eager tenacity as Rydelius casts her riveting vocal antics into the stomping devilment of a proposal. At times Scottish trio The Creeping Ivies is provoked in thought by the track but a great spicing to something again as unique as all the subsequent essences and adventures across the album prove to be, all hues in viral sonic toxins particular to Baronen & Satan.

Next up is Catwalk, its feline prowl lively and predacious with Olsson’s swings marking every step with zeal. Always fuelled by a boisterous spirit, the song stalks the listener as vocals wrap their flirtatious clutches around psych and garage infestation. Magnetic drama, the song sublimely bewitches before the even more energetic exploits of Asskisser bound in. With shimmering sonic suggestion and more rhythmic rascality, a PiL-esque sheen invading its bold canter, the track commands the listener like a puppeteer, its noise nurtured tendrils veining its wonderful manipulation.

Headcuts lurks and taunts with an instantly open Cramps inspiration, continuing to size up its victim before launching into a rapacious garage punk stroll with fifties rockabilly spicing. As its predecessor, the track is glorious; caustic manna for ears and instincts which a fine line of sixties garage rock a la Cradle to add another twist.

Expanding and thickening its ravenous enterprise and character, Satan Is A Lady hits another sweet spot with the sonic buzz of The Projects, a minute and a breath of irresistible niggly punk rock which Comet emulates in success with its own demonic affair for ears and imagination. As most tracks, its core is a relentless nagging which gets right under the skin; heavy dark bait bred on rhythmic and sonic almost wanton dexterity honed into a cauldron of virulent temptation as carefully woven as it is rabidly unleashed.

The album’s title track swings in with muscles tensed next, a riveting PiL meets Siouxsie and the Banshees hook circling ears as once more the compelling tones of Rydelius grip the bold intrusion. Sainz’s initial bait swiftly develops a Buzzcocks spiced essence as the track flexes its animated imagination, every second a beguiling and infectious scheme to enslave.

Through the psychotic stomp of Pony and its sonic Cramps meets the Orson Family moonshine pleasure only escalates, the latter of those hues a bolder essence in the dark saunter of Sugarwalls which too only inflames an already greedy appetite for band and sound. Invasively ethereal and ravenously portentous, the song also gives a glimpse of what you might imagine bands like Blood Ceremony and Jess and the Ancient Ones could sound like if mutant off springs of Lux Interior and Jim Morrison.

The album ends with the invasively haunting Underwater Love, an immersion into a sonic sea of intrigue and unpredictable imagination steered by the alluring vocal ingenuity of Rydelius. It is dark, bordering on suffocating and a compelling end to a quite thrilling and refreshing album.

Uniqueness is rare but when it comes it should be devoured especially when it bears the dark discord and beauty of Baronen & Satan.

Both Why Does The Blood Never Stick To Your Teeth? and Satan Is A Lady are out now @ https://baronenandsatan.bandcamp.com/album/why-does-the-blood-never-stick-to-your-teeth  and https://baronenandsatan.bandcamp.com/album/satan-is-a-lady respectively.

https://www.facebook.com/baronenochsatan/

Pete RingMaster 07/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Archie and the Bunkers – Self Titled

Promo'15B_RingMaster Review

Dubbed as ‘Hi-Fi Organ Punk’, the Archie and the Bunkers sound, to simplify things, is a compelling mix of garage punk and masterfully stripped back rock ‘n’ roll infused with a contagious revelry which has ears and imagination spinning. Created on drums, organ, and vocals alone, it is an enticing which has feet and emotions fully involved in scant minutes whilst in regard to its creators, to use the phrase Paul from Dirty Water Records, who are releasing the US duo’s self-titled debut album, used when introducing them to us, “There is no one like them.

Formed in 2013 with a name inspired by a character in the classic US television sitcom All in the Family and its spin-off Archie Bunker’s Place, Archie And The Bunkers is the creative union of brothers Emmett (drums/vocals) and Cullen (organ/vocals). Weaving in inspirations from the likes of Dead Boys, The Animals, The Stooges, The Screamers, The Damned, Jimmy Smith, and Richard ‘Groove’ Holmes into their strikingly unique romps of attitude loaded sound, the teenagers began recording in their basement with the subsequent self-produced EPs Comrade X. and Trade Winds being released in 2013 and ‘14 respectively. Sculpted from the inventive and often skilfully agitated rhythms of Emmett and Cullen’s whirling vintage organ sound, the bands songs are a diverse fusion of blues, acid jazz, and psych rock melded into a core old school punk and garage rock devilment. As the band’s debut album shows, it is a tapestry that is wonderfully raw and intrusive whilst being simultaneously a lingering and bewitching tempting. Its flavours are often recognisable, and influences open but with the instinctive unfussy yet intricate invention of the brothers, it is a proposition like no other.

Standard 3mm Spine Album_RingMaster Review   Recorded with legendary producer/engineer Jim Diamond at Ghetto Recorders in Detroit, the Archie and the Bunkers album opens with the dark seducing of Sally Lou. Opening with percussive coaxing and almost as quickly the heavy haunting of organ, the song subsequently slips into gear and a gentle but purposeful stroll. As Cullen’s fingers dance over the keys of his nostalgia oozing instrument with at times, as in many songs, a potent hue of The Stranglers’ Dave Greenfield to its melodic weave, vocals twist and turn in emotion and intensity as slower croons evolve into brawling squalls and vice versa. It is a thick persuasion to start things off but one soon outshone by the energetic stomp of Lady in RKO. The dark psych ‘n’ roll of the starter is replaced by a coarser post punk swagger with more than a tone of The Fall to it, especially in the rhythmic shuffle and vocal incitement offered. The keys again hone a Doors bred melodic adventure into something distinct to the imagination of Archie and the Bunkers, but fair to say if you have ever imagined what music an illegitimate offspring of Jim Morrison and Mark E. Smith might conjure, this song is your answer.

   I’m Not Really Sure What I’m Gonna Do takes over with a ska infused entrance, the organ twisting into the opposite direction every time ears expect the track to bounce along on that kind of saunter. The chosen path is just as vibrantly magnetic and infectious though, its punk/psych catchiness an irresistible recruitment of body and appetite with a healthy dose of creative and vocal ire to its character. It is a blend not so thick in the following Knifuli Knifula, though its flirtatious weave of melodic spicery has darker hues hinting and suggesting too as feet get wrapped up in its addictive dance. Moving into slower more sonically sultry scenery only adds to the inventive theatre working away on the imagination whilst vocally the duo keep the garage and punk heart of their music potently lit for an already very keen appetite for the album by this point.

Roaming organ enticing over voraciously rolling beats brings You’re the Victim into ears next, its infectious bait unrelenting as the song expands its breath of vocal confrontation and enthralling melodic colour. The track is sheer captivation, the craft of both brothers as eclectic as it is impressively resourceful allowing the song itself to nudge individual thoughts of The Animals, Into The Whale and once or twice The Ramones across its fiery seducing.

Each passing song seems to increase the strength and impressiveness of the album, Different Track vigorously prowling ears with its belligerent voice and creative psychosis, emerging like a mix of The Dropper’s Neck and Asylums sent back to the sixties/seventies and dragged back to now kicking and screaming. It, as those before it, just whips up swift intrigue and hunger for more, which is just what the outstanding Miss Taylor with its rhythmic tenacity courted by the flowing temptation of the organ provides in riveting style. There is just time to catch a breath as the exceptional warped waltz relinquishes its grip, a moment for a quick gasp before Austria brings its cosmopolitan intrigue and great repetitive enticement to tease and excite ears and imagination. Once more, a scent of The Stranglers lines and spices up the excellent encroachment of sound and suggestion to leave satisfaction full and that urge for more rampant.

I Wish I Could ensures the thrills keep coming; its jerky energy and mischievous nature inciting an infection loaded slice of power pop built on the mischief of The Dickies and the plain stirring roar of Dead Boys whilst Trade Winds stomps around with even more seventies punk fuel to its raucous brawl of dirty addictiveness. The two songs steal the show upon the album, certainly emerging as the biggest favourites amongst nothing but, though they are quickly rivalled by the post punk/new wave/psych rock amalgam that is The Last Stooge. Again a thick grin is drawn by its brief but bracing ingenuity of sound and craft, a smile which started on track one and only ever ebbs and flows in its broadness across the rest of the album.

Completed by the tantalising instrumental serenade of Joanie, it is almost impossible to escape the lure of Archie and the Bunkers, band and album, without at least one more thick listen of at least a song or two, or more, not that there are any complaints of course. Your favourite album of the year it just might be, something unique to others it certainly is.

Archie and the Bunkers is out now via Dirty Water Records @ http://www.dirtywaterrecords.co.uk/shop/#!/Archie-and-the-Bunkers/c/13761039/offset=0&sort=normal

http://www.archieandthebunkers.com https://www.facebook.com/archieandthebunkersofficial   https://twitter.com/hifiorganpunk

Pete RingMaster 27/10/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Venice Trip – Look Forward EP

Photo Cred Kamila K Stanley

Photo Cred Kamila K Stanley

As the summer heats up so does the wealth of smouldering and sultry sounds on offer, and possibly none as bewitching as those unveiled by UK band Venice Trip within the Look Forward EP. Bringing three songs which are fuelled by the breath of late sixties/early seventies psychedelic rock and cultured in a modern imagination, the release is a striking and captivating introduction to the London quartet which more than lives up to the buzz already arising from the band’s live presence.

Fresh from making an acclaimed appearance at The Great Escape in Brighton, the foursome of vocalist/guitarist Andrés Alcover, keyboardist/vocalist Shenny, bassist Nick GK, and drummer Joe Wood immediately has ears aflame with the EP’s title track. The opening song emerges on a feisty shuffle of rhythms and wiry riffs but it is the tangy melody which has the imagination and appetite especially drooling, its sultry shimmer and inescapable lure the lead into a rich seduction of vocals and melodic enterprise. Beats continue to cast an anthemic lure whilst a sixties glazing captivatingly coats vocals and melodies, everything uniting in a contagion which sublimely engulfs body and passions. There is no escaping a sense of The Doors to the track, but equally there are essences bred in artists such as Small Faces, Syd Barrett and more currently MGMT, as well as surprisingly a potent feel of eighties band Associates at times. The song is sensational and a dramatically thrilling start to the release.

Ep cover_RingMaster Review The following Oh Katy is a gentler caress of energy though no less infectious with its evocative grooving and glowing harmonies. The psych pop resonance of the song sizzles on the ears, its spatial tempting grounded by the just as riveting and effective melancholic bass lures amidst thick swipes upon drums. Whereas the first song has a tenacious and broad sense of life and energy, its successor offers a more intimately emotional and personal presence with a just as transfixing and intoxicating tapestry of sound. It also has a slight whisper of Arctic Monkeys to it, though again the main scent of the track is soaked in psychedelic rock from across the decades.

Look Forward closes with Father Of The Universe, another song revealing fresh depths and variety to the band’s sound. From its opening seconds it flirts with a delicious garage punk like lure, the kind of dark and psyche twisted bait which graced the likes of The Cramps and The Orson Family. Swiftly infusing more Jim Morrison and Co like acidity into its alluring grooves and an increasing seduction of keys, the song blossoms into a dramatic, bordering on psychotic waltz of creative and vocal adventure where shadows and beauty collide and collude within increasingly tempestuous character.

It is a fiery blaze bringing a superb encounter to a mighty end. With the only moan about the release being it is far too short for greedy enjoyment it feels quite safe to say that Venice Trip is going to be a major part of many musical lives and quite likely the British rock scene ahead.

The Look Forward EP is available now via RYP Recordings @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/look-forward-single/id1003281940

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

RingMaster 03/07/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net