Gavin Chappell-Bates – We Are The Ones


The beginning of the year saw British singer songwriter/guitarist, Gavin Chappell-Bates unveil the video for new track Refugees. It was an ear catching offering also providing a teaser for the Cambridge musician’s forthcoming debut album. Now the release of We Are The Ones is upon us and fair to say if that earlier proposition spiced up the tastes buds there is plenty more highly flavoursome goodness to be found and feasted upon in the thoroughly enjoyable album.

The musical desire and devotion of Chappell-Bates is said to go back to the age of eleven and being inspired by Sgt. Pepper, an ‘awakening’ backed by “ his musical friends and a few early lessons by Ezio’s Booga.” Learning his craft playing in various local bands  which included Bokaata, The Deadlines, We Are Godzilla, and Up & Atom , Chappell-Bates decided to pursue a solo career in 2014, drawing on influences listed as The Beatles, Feeder, Aerosmith, Buddy Holly, The Bee Gees, Smashing Pumpkins, Our Lady Peace, and majorly Manic Street Preachers for his own creative adventures. The following year saw first EP, Black Holes released. Its attention provoking presence was followed by the singles 95 and We Are The Ones, each luring more eager ears the way of his emergence. Equally live he has been sparking strong praise and support around the UK, playing venues such as Bury St. Edmunds’ The Hunter Club, The Rescue Rooms in Nottingham, and in London the likes of Hoxton Bar and Sebright Arms.

Already earning strong radios play on BBC Introducing, BBC 6 Music, and XFM among many others and being was nominated for Best Male Solo Artist in the 2015 NMG Awards, Chappell-Bates is looking to now spark national awareness, something We Are The Ones certainly has the potential to give a potent nudge to. Produced by James Coppolaro, who with drummer Rob Gibiaqui (Sergey Lazarev, The Pinker Tones) plays alongside Chappell-Bates on the release, the album swiftly has ears keenly attentive with opener Church Of Rock ‘N’ Roll. A rousing and contagious slice of sound boisterously living up to its title, the song springs punk riffs and spicy hooks on ears as Chappell-Bates’ vocals lead its lively anthemic pull. It is a punchy and infectious start setting up an eagerness to hear more which the following All Ways more than satisfies.

Art_RingMasterReviewThe second song equally has an infectious swing to its presence whilst pursuing a more melodic/alternative rock imagination in its energetic persuasion. As with many songs there is a familiarity to the sound and nature of the song but equally a fresh essence that highlights Chappell-Bates’ own invention, the following 95 another example. It carries an air of the decade of rock spawning its title yet casts a vibrant pop ‘n’ roll flavouring which has the catchiness of modern rock pop flirtation. Its pleasing presence is matched in success by Refugee next, its initial gentle melodic caress growing in weight and intensity as keys shimmer in the background. Soon that brewing intent erupts in a fiery crescendo and chorus before repeating the cycle to engaging effect with Chappell-Bates’ vocals again a potent hue to his songwriting and its colourful realisation. A more subtle but increasingly provocative texture is provided by guest violinist Prue Ward and cellist Anna Scott, their evocative and here melancholic imagination a great spicing colouring a handful of tracks hereon in.

The album’s title track is another; its melodically reflective balladry evolving into a warm and inescapably catchy rock pop canter framed and steered by a robust and tenacious web of beats before making way for the acoustic tempting of Writing In The Sand and in turn the delicious spirit sparking incitement of Black Holes. The first of the songs has a sunny air to its infectious gait and a smouldering intimacy to its vocal and lyrical embrace whilst the second immediately has ears and imagination gripped with its opening throaty bassline and subsequent tone. A Nirvana-esque feel coats the beginning of the song whilst its emerging virulent stroll lies somewhere between Weezer and The Presidents of the United States of America, all essences combining to colour an encounter whipping hips and voice into eager involvement as it takes favourite song accolades on the album.

Dead End Disco Streets brings a great electronic spicing to its magnetic and physically buoyant temptation, indie and electro pop flavours uniting to embrace and dance with the equally spirited vocals before Follow The Light unveils its own animated serenade which dances with ears rather than laying sentimentally upon them though it is certainly emotively shaped and fuelled. As if any more proof was needed, the song is further evidence that Chappell-Bates knows how to write pop and rock songs which simply stir attention, proof swiftly backed by The Finest Hour and its Big Country like landscape of melodic and folkish hues.

The album concludes with firstly Last Angel, an emotionally intense country spiced ballad featuring the guest vocals of Kathryn James and keys of Jamie Brooks, and finally the acoustic/folk pop sparkle of Starlight. Both songs have brightness to their sentiment loaded proposals, especially the last which with a hug of strings is edgy and provocative as the best pop ballads always are.

Certainly some songs ignited more lusty reactions than others, but from its first note to last syllable, We Are The Ones is a proposition that can only be enjoyed from an artist with the potential to made big strides in the UK rock/pop scene.

We Are The Ones is released April 8th through R*E*P*E*A*T Records and @

Pete RingMaster 07/04/2016

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Media Stres – E.V.I.L. II

Photo by Lucija Obadić

Photo by Lucija Obadić

Media Stres is an alternative rock band from Croatia which has already made some potent nudges on ears with their previous releases but now offers their biggest incitement on the broadest attention with new EP E.V.I.L. II. The five track release is the continuation of debut album E.V.I.L. (e-Virus Influenced Love), an encounter released in two parts with its second revealing the fulfilment and more of the potential fuelling earlier propositions.

Hailing from Cakovec, Media Stres emerged in 2012 drawing on inspirations from the likes of Biffy Clyro, Placebo, Muse, Royal Blood, and Punčke for their imaginative weave of sound ranging from alternative and progressive rock to post-punk and dirtier hues. Demo EP Fear and Panic was released in 2013 as the band unleashed their live presence and hunger which has since seen them play over sixty shows in Croatia as well as in countries such as Serbia, Hungary, Slovenia, Austria, and France. The first well-received part of the album, E.V.I.L. was unveiled in the December of 2014, an introduction for a great many to the band which quickly marked out Media Stres as a prospect to keep a close ear upon. Now the trio of guitarist/vocalist Karlo Komorski, drummer/backing vocalist Matej Obadić, and bassist Aleksandar Hutinec complete their first full-length with E.V.I.L. II, whilst setting down a new plateau to their adventure and invention, not forgetting compelling sound.

AlbumCover2_RingMaster ReviewWhereas its predecessor was themed by a narrative concerned with the impact of technology on society and how corrupt that society became with said technology, E.V.I.L. II is the exploration of people living in the shadow of two super states and having to decide to which of the two they belong. It opens up with the scene setting Nations and instantly bold rhythms from Obadić provide an anthemic lead into the waiting narrative, the gnarly tone of Hutinec’s bass quickly adds its suggestive tempting to the coaxing too. In no time the equally dramatic tempting of Komorski’s guitar stirs up song and air, providing a sonic breeze around the hypnotic lure of increasingly pungent rhythms. It is thick captivation crowding ears and appetite, one blossoming further as Komorski unveils the song’s tale with his potent vocals as the song bristles and feistily simmers with an essence of Muse and at times something slightly Manic Street Preachers like.

The outstanding start slips into the just as enthralling and quickly addictive Right or Wrong. Making a more reserved but no less gripping entrance with bass and percussive jabs early bait, the track is soon entangled in the sonic and melodic enterprise of guitar and a spicing which plays in many ways like a mix of Fatima Mansions and Interpol. The moment when the protagonists in the album’s story have to choose their homes, the track paints the drama of the situation with a fiery blend of contrasting textures and intimidating shadows which line every shaft of melodic light and infectious flume within the intensive oppression involved. A progressively lit slice of contagious rock, the excellent track is matched in success and drama by the grungier tones of Consolation and its Bowie-esque colouring to another rhythmically and sonically dynamic incitement. Even with its rousing rock ‘n’ roll, the song’s emotion is dark and fuelled by a loss of hope again enjoyably presented by the vocal expression and strength of Komorski whilst bound in the band’s provocative endeavours.

The break out of world war is the canvas for End Times, an apocalypse sound-tracked by the song’s lively canter with melancholic melodies and, as ever, powerfully alluring vocals and highly persuasive rhythms. The song is persistently boisterous in its gait, its swing a perfect temper and spark to the solemn weave of words and emotions cast in something akin to The Smiths and Teardrop Explodes with again that Fatima Mansions like creative spicing involved.

Hope with its brooding climate spawned from the initial magnetic groan of bass completes tale and release. Shadows again encroach alongside the scything strikes of guitar and rhythmic rumblings whilst a solemnity coats the sultry melodic tendrils veining the rebuild of a desolated land and an increasingly receptive imagination to the invention and evocative theatre of Media Stres. The track is superb, matching all that came before and leaving a lingering compulsion for ears and thoughts to keep E.V.I.L. II alone a persistent companion.

The first EP of E.V.I.L. was an impressive and resourceful adventure but its successor simply overshadows it in every aspect. Media Stres may still be a secret yet to be discovered by a great many but expectations and hopes are that the band is set to receive the full attention and support their striking invention and music undoubtedly deserves.

E.V.I.L. II is available now @

Pete RingMaster 09/02/2016

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Eujenics – Kalashnikov

Eujenics_RingMaster Review

With their debut single Meniscus, UK alternative rock band Eujenics announced themselves as a potential fuelled and seriously striking proposition. It was a song bulging with emotive textures within a pungent atmosphere of provocative craft and fiery imagination; an impressive incitement breeding intrigue and an eager appetite for more. Its successor Kalashnikov has now been unleashed to confirm all thoughts and suggestions arisen about the band whilst uncovering another aspect to their increasingly gripping sound.

Hailing from Sunderland, the quartet consists of vocalist Nic Wood, guitarist Chris Hanna, bassist David Scott, and drummer Adam Hay. Since forming earlier this year, Eujenics has of course made their introduction through the September released single Meniscus and backed it up with shows at the O2 Academy and Bannerman’s, with another on the immediate horizon at Trillians. The last track’s success also saw it being featured on Nick Robert’s BBC Radio Newcastle show and listed as Amazing Radio’s track of the week, a reaction easy to Kalashnikov initially emulating before pushing things on again.

The new single opens on a delicious earthy and predatory bassline from Scott, the beats of Hay soon in tandem with a similar stalking to their presence. In no time the song is ablaze with a wall of stoner-esque, rapaciously heavy enterprise from Hanna, a melodic suggestiveness also swiftly springing from his endeavour as the enticingly volatile delivery of Wood completes the arousing incitement on ears and emotions. As with the last single, there is a raw scent of Manic Street Preachers to the encounter, and the emotive tenacity of Mind Museum, though the track is a far more dynamic and explosively tempestuous encounter which suggests possible inspiration from a Therapy? or Reuben.

The track continues to be a fire of physical and emotional angst, skilfully crafted and layered to make a thick impact from start to finish. Eujenics again impresses as they build another almost tsunami like roar of creative drama and persuasion within Kalashnikov. The band is currently working on their first EP scheduled for release March 2016, anticipation of which is now inflamed thanks to Kalashnikov as well as its previous fellow protagonist.

Kalashnikov is out now and available as a free download @

Upcoming live show: Trillians, Newcastle December 15th 2015

Pete RingMaster 01/12/2015

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Slow Riot – Cathedral


artwork_RingMaster Review

Eighties inspired post punk is seemingly on a surge right now, its seeds being blossomed into varied but distinctive incitements of sound and imagination echoing the genre’s origins. One such band making one of the most compelling persuasions is Irish band Slow Riot, a trio from Limerick who recently released an irresistible dark beauty in the shape of the Cathedral EP. The four track release is an evocation of shadows and solemn emotions cast in a creative calling on the imagination, but one equally bred with epic overtones and an emotive intimacy reflective of something found within its title’s landscape.

Formed in 2013, the threesome of vocalist/bassist Niall Clancy, drummer Paul Cosgrave, and guitarist Aaron Duff recorded Cathedral with producer Kevin Vanbergen (The Pixies, The Maccabees, Dinosaur Pile-Up, The La’s, Biffy Clyro) at the Manic Street Preachers’ Faster studio in Cardiff; additional assistance coming from in-house engineer Loz Williams and the Manics’ James Dean Bradfield through the offering of use of equipment and instruments. From the off the release stirs the senses and imagination but equally the physical body is also gripped by the forcibly rousing prowess and thick insistence of sound.

SR_RingMaster Review   The EP opens with the band’s new single Demons, the lone beats of Cosgrave luring in attention and appetite with an anthemic coaxing. The melancholic charm of Duff’s guitar is soon involving an emotive melody too, it laying evocatively over the persistent arousal of rhythms now also equipped with the solemn resonance of Clancy’s bass. His dour yet alluring vocals are close behind as the song brews more of a Joy Division meets Interpol like croon for a formidable captivation only enhanced by a more fiery nature emerging in the guitar and a flowing crystalline elegance spread by keys. Each element evolves new hues to the slim but varied layers as the track continues, it all building up into a strongly potent beginning to Cathedral.

It is a start for personal tastes quickly eclipsed by the next pair of songs though, City Of Culture the first up. A great scuzzy mix of guitar and bass aligned to boisterous beats sets song and ears off in eager union, a sparkling melody soon adding to the enticement as Clancy’s vocals’ twist around on the riveting web spun by all the already contagious elements. There is a touch of The Sound to the song but more so bands like Scars and Crispy Ambulance with the discordant clang of The Fire Engines in there for good measure. Ultimately though, these are spices only bolstering a virulent tempting unique to Slow Riot.

Just as stunning is the following Adele, a transfixing slice of dark balladry becoming increasingly infectious and addictive as sonic seduction merges with repetitious mastery around the thick potency of the vocals. A revolving incitement set somewhere between My Bloody Valentine, The Slow Readers Club, and Artery, the glorious track reveals not only more of the craft in songwriting and delivery of the band but also the depth of their sound’s imagination and diversity.

Cooper’s Dream brews a character more similar to the Joy Division-esque embrace of Demons, but again outshines the excellent start to the EP with its individual weave of sonic expression, haunting lingering hooks, and a just as enjoyably galvanic rhythmic recruitment of eager involvement. As the EP, the track worms under the skin, infects the psych leaving ingrained lures and rapture in its wake to ensure a perpetual return to its nest of climatic builds and roaring crescendos bound in melancholy entwined restraints is always a lively intent.

The track provides a superb end to a superb release, a full introduction to Slow Riot sowing the seeds to thick anticipation of their next move and lusty enjoyment in their first.

The Cathedral EP is out now via Straight Lines Are Fine @

Pete RingMaster 25/11/2015

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Eujenics – Meniscus

David Gunton Photography

David Gunton Photography

Making their introduction with a roaring bang, UK alternative rock band Eujenics have just released their debut single Meniscus, a track potent enough to alone suggest there is something rather tasty emerging from within the musical heart of Sunderland.

There is not a great deal we can reveal about Eujenics this time around but it is hard to imagine that they will not be offering more heavily flavoursome propositions ahead through which we can eagerly explore them more. Right now we know they are a quintet which formed this past March and made their live debut at The Academy in Newcastle to, by all accounts, a rapturous crowd. Fair to say they have stirred up a strong and loyal following already and now, with their first EP scheduled for February next year alongside a full UK tour, Eujenics is setting about laying the seeds for national awareness of their thickly enticing sound with Meniscus.

A great opening snarl of guitar with spicy grooving attached is quickly met by a just as tasty and gnarly bass proposal. It is magnetic stuff which continues as the song settle into its controlled but fiery stroll led by the swiftly enticing vocals of Nic Wood. Guitarists Chris Hanna and David Oswin continue to offer antagonistic riffs against heavily alluring grooves, the latter seeming to inspire a swagger in the confrontational attitude of the rhythms uncaged by bassist David Scott and drummer Chris Hall.

Every turn seems to bring a new line of imagination with each more fascinating and gripping than the last, culminating in a passage which is dominated by the predatory bass and the dark spoken tones of Wood. It is a moment which just puts the icing on the thrilling cake. Across the track this kind of invention and impassioned energy does spark thoughts of bands like Manic Street Preachers and Mind Museum but they are whispers in something already emerging as distinct to an attention grabbing band and song.

We reckon checking out Eujenics is a done deal for you all, though when you get a first bite this good the wait for the next nibble can seem a lifetime so be warned.

Meniscus is out now as a free download.

Pete RingMaster 24/09/2105

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Underground Ocean – I See Through You

Underground Ocean_RingMaster Review

Following a highly promising debut single, UK rockers Underground Ocean raise the ante with their second encounter, the explosively enticing I See Through You. In hindsight its enjoyable predecessor, Get Me Out, almost feels like the band was testing the water, building up to a bigger splash with its successor, and fair to say the new single is just that, a big nudge to greater attention.

Worcester bred Underground Ocean consists of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Stuart McDonnell, lead guitarist Matt Beddoes, bassist George Parker, and drummer Lee Evans and spices its music with inspirations ranging from Foo Fighters, The Police, and Manic Street Preachers to the Stereophonics and Fleetwood Mac. Formed early 2014, the quartet quickly set down a marker for their live presence, selling out home town gigs immediately with their debut staged in a 250 capacity venue. Since then they have played various shows across England to increasing success and acclaim with 2015 a rather busy year on that front. Now they look set and ready to stoke up more attention with I See Through You and its accompanying video.

The single instantly erupts in ears with force and energy, the swinging beats of Evans slicing through the just as rousing riffs cast by McDonnell and Beddoes. Things settle down a touch as the strong tones of McDonnell join the affair though there is still a raucous jangle from the guitars and the bass of Parker continues its eager dark stroll. The chorus is a rapid temptation too, its emotive and sonic roar coated with magnetic drama and anthemic urgency and with ease quickly involving the listener. The song continues to creatively bellow as new twists and scythes of fresh sound mingle in its angst lit heart right through to its final striking second.

Again the word rousing has to be used to describe the character and effect of the song, and its incendiary impact on satisfaction and appetite. Get Me Out was a potent introduction to Underground Ocean but I See Through You easily leaves it in its wake, and ahead of an EP the band is currently working towards, both songs ensure it is going to be one impatiently anticipated proposition.

I See Through You is available now

Pete RingMaster 14/09/2015

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The Endeavour – Voyage EP

The Endeavour Online Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

In a year of rich debuts, another strong and potential loaded introduction comes courtesy of UK rockers The Endeavour and their Voyage EP. Bulging with four tracks of dynamic and feisty alternative rock fuelled by impassioned energy and fiery melodies, the Peterborough quintet’s first offering has the potency and power to nudge national awareness of their already attention grabbing sound and presence. Voyage is not an explosion to alter any aspect of the landscape of British rock ‘n’ roll but it is a refreshing and accomplished roar from a band easy to see springing to greater heights from this highly enjoyable base.

The Endeavour began in 2013 and consists of four brothers, Shawn (vocals), Brandon (guitar), Shane (guitar), and Garren Radley (bass), and close friend Matthew Meadows (drums). They took little time in stirring up local support and successfully hitting the live scene, finding themselves sharing stages with the likes of Fort Hope, Anavue, Enter Shikari, Deaf Havana, and Funeral For A Friend over time. With Voyage, the five-piece is looking to emulate existing success on the broader canvas of countrywide recognition, and you can only imagine it will ensure at the very least that The Endeavour is a name a great many more will be very aware of.

The Endeavour Cover Artwork_RingMaster Review   The EP starts with a bang in the boisterous shape of Take It All. From its first lure of spicy riffs the song has ears and imagination alert, engrossed soon after as thumping beats join the provocative guitar bait. Swiftly followed by just as enticing hooks, it is a thrilling opening which never slips a gear as the song expands into a dramatic stroll equipped with still virulent rhythms, a wonderfully predatory bassline, and tangy guitar enterprise. Across this the excellent vocals of Shawn command attention as they spill the narrative over the track’s magnetic web of ideation. The song is unafraid to change its intensity, gait, and weight of textures across is enthralling body too but always it returns to that irresistible combination of sound and invention which set its thrilling presence in motion.

The following Open Heart reveals a more relaxed presence in energy and intensity yet also comes with sparkling melodies and striking hooks within a thick rhythmic lure. The bass again is almost bestial in tone, its barracuda voice perfect contrast to the warm smoulder wrapping the hearty enterprise alongside. Initially, as in the first song, there is a whiff of Manic Street Preachers in the air but eventually it slips into a sound more akin to a Young Guns or Taking Back Sunday. The opening track owns ears and appetite whilst the second is more an asking of attention as is No One Else To Blame, though both songs only find success. The third proposal has a catchy spine of tenacious riffs and spicy guitar adventure which shines even brighter in a mellower passage pierced by the military precision of Matthew’s sticks. As its predecessor, the track grows in potency and persuasion over time, emerging as another big, promise filled, declaration of the adventure and brewing depths in The Endeavour sound and songwriting.

Voyage is brought to an end by After The Storm, an emotive croon with lively rhythms and a slightly volatile landscape of melodic and sonic resourcefulness. The vocals and harmonies steal the show but every element of the band is a tantalising and riveting aspect as the song grows bolder and more tempestuous with every passing minute. It is a fine end to an impressive first listen to The Endeavour, Voyage showing that the band have the makings and more of something able to make a strong impact on the UK rock scene; we will be waiting like so many from now on in, with keen anticipation.

The Voyage EP is available from July 27th through all stores and @

Ringmaster 27/07/2015

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