Arkdown – The Calling

Having already teased acclaim and attention with their debut EP a couple of years back, UK metallers Arkdown give them a real shove with its successor, The Calling. Unleashing five uncompromising, seriously predacious cuts of metalcore seeded hostility as stylish as they are rabid the new EP is the declaration of a band ready to take on all comers.

Cast in the steel of their hometown Sheffield hailing Arkdown has been on a steady ascent through the British metal ranks since emerging in 2015. The well received EP, Path, lit up the underground metal scene with its 2016 release whilst live the band’s reputation has only risen as alongside their own shows they have shared stages with the likes of Fit for an Autopsy, Oceans Ate Alaska, Martyr Defiled, Kingdom of Giants, A Night in Texas, and Shields. The Calling is their next bold and impressive step and challenge to the higher echelons of the British metal frontline and further afield.

Though metalcore based, the Arkdown sound is a rich union of flavours, death and melodic metal colluding with rapacious grooves and merciless aggression across that instinctive bed. It makes for tracks which even as they directly assault equally fester in the imagination all twisting and turning with imaginative adventure as quickly shown by EP opener, Wake Up. The initial calm of its intro is soon squashed under the following weight of riffs and rhythms from which vocalist Kyle Dawson enticingly scowls and the guitars of Mike Dyson and Mike Walker spin senses ensnaring webs of antipathy wired with fine melodic thread. Swiftly a diversity of sound and vocal attack mingle in the outstanding trespass leaving ears ringing and pleasure greedily rising.

The following It Calls Me instantly wraps the listener in spirals of contagiously intrusive grooving, the swinging beats of Alex Roberts taking skilled pot shots as again the throat raw variety coated assault of Dawson erupt in animosity and magnetism. With the eager yet brooding basslines of Ed Morley as potent as the invasive enterprise of the guitars, the track grabs best track honours as it further ignited the passions before Mirrors embraces the senses in its own infectious guitar wiring as winds of discontent and dark reflection ravage. As its predecessors, the track is a captivating roar of craft and enterprise built on an array of individual agility and as those before, another mighty reason to devour the Arkdown sound.

The closing pair of Five Years and Falling brings the EP to a rousing close. The first is a sonic wrath within a cauldron of melodic intensity, uncaging grooves and sonic rancor with an intrusive yet deft hand whilst its successor while being the calmest moment within The Calling, indeed a haunting seduction of imagination, it is also a tempest of conflict and venomous ideation as mercurial and volatile as it is tantalising.

Giving five tracks which increasingly fascinate as they corrode the senses, The Calling is a striking and increasingly irresistible encounter from a band surely poised to stir up real fuss with their dynamic, dramatic and deviously compelling sound.

The Calling is out Friday 2nd November.

 https://www.facebook.com/ArkdownOfficial/   https://www.instagram.com/arkdown.official/   https://twitter.com/ArkdownOfficial

Pete RingMaster 31/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Of Legions – Face Value

With already a rather potent reputation for their voracious live presence, UK outfit Of Legion offer the fullest introduction to their hardcore ferocity with debut album Face Value. Enticingly irritable, enjoyably raw, and emotively abrasive, the nine track trespass is a potential rich suggestion of a band carrying all the qualities to make a lingering mark on the British hardcore/punk scene.

Emerging in 2015, Stoke hailing Of Legions have evolved a sound which could be said to have found its true roar around the release the following year of second EP,. They have continued to hone it with essences of metal, rock, and punk blossoming within and as evidenced by their first album, though it still feels like it has a way to go to fulfil its potential, it is a sound that has grown into one ear grabbing, imagination stirring proposal. Alongside, the quartet has further earned increasing plaudits with a live presence which has seen them share stages with the likes of Gideon, Desolated, Silent Screams, Liferuiner, Martyr Defiled, TRC, Machete 187, Continents, and Brokencyde. Now it is Face Value looking to push the band’s growing presence and fair to say it makes for one hefty invitation to ears and awareness.

The album’s title track opens things up, Face Value looming in from a distance with heavy coaxing riffs and crisp rhythms; already that multi-flavoured mix of sound grabbing ears. Once in full view, the initial vocal blast from Luke Mansfield triggers a rapacious surge of sound and emotion but one which prowls rather than violates to great effect. Swiftly it is all over the song brief but a great start setting up a real appetite for the rest of the album which the following Let Loose soon feeds. It instantly walls ears in a tempest of intensity and noise, the scything swings of drummer Nath McCue full of ill-intent next to the thick grumble of Ollie Lewis’ bass. With Mansfield venting with emotive passion, the guitar of Sam Morrey casts an enterprising web of intrigue and animus which just grips attention, the four way combination uniting in another two minutes plus of creative animosity and pleasure.

La Familia is another which prowls the listener, its threat and energy in check but fully felt as riffs and rhythms badger rather than strike the senses. With hungry hooks and rhythmic imagination at its centre, the song easily keeps predictability away before Worthless springs a bedlam of acidic grooves, vocal discontent, and rhythmic voracity. It similarly twists and turns with adventure and tenacity, blending familiar essences with real imagination carrying Of Legions individuality.

Grouchy bordering on choleric, Scum crowds and bullies ears next, Mansfield leading its corrosive holler with his throat scraping outpourings. Yet at its core is the most irresistible of grooves which inspires a similarly infectious lining across all traits as it leaves the senses withered, even more so with its final bearish incitement.

Even in their individuality, all songs to this point have their seeds in recognisable hardcore beddings but with Suicidal Thoughts the band really push themselves as progressive lined melodies and atmospheric intimation envelop ears as vocals share emotional scars. It is a compelling start which develops into a melodic rock/punk stroll, Morrey colouring it with some great fiery yet suggestive melodies. Leaving food for thought and a whole new current of potential flowing from the band it is another inescapably enjoyable moment within Face Value.

With the adversarial and constantly shifting dynamics of No Loyalty and the bullish rock ‘n’ roll of Hard Time, the album only confirms its potency if neither track quite stirs personal tastes as forcibly as other songs. Nevertheless, each only builds on the blending of styles the band embraces before Wormfeeder brings things to a close with its snarly intrusive quarrel. With death metal essences in its barbarous and suffocating tempest, the track is sonic pestilence and so easy to willingly succumb to.

Face Value is a great next step in the Of Legions’ growth, yes there are elements which might not grab as much as others but its promise is undeniable as too the enjoyment it delivers.

Face Value is out now.

https://www.facebook.com/OfLegions     https://www.instagram.com/of_legions_uk/

Pete RingMaster 20/02/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Islasorna – E.D.E.N

Islasorna Online Promo_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

Band and sound might be tagged as progressive metal, but the best description for both elements and the creative and technical fury of Scottish band Islasorna, is psychotic. The Edinburgh quintet’s debut EP E.D.E.N is a tempest of bedlamic ideation, a deranged onslaught of inventive noise which could be declared a sonic psychosis and should be acclaimed as one intoxicating slab of thrilling turmoil.

Formed at the beginning of 2014, Islasorna create the most unpredictable maelstrom of sound. It is indeed bred in from a progressive seeding, but from second to second comes infused with a diverse array of flavours and psyche twisting imagination. Inspirations for the band are drawn from the likes of The Devil Wears Prada, Northlane, Whitechapel, Sikth, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Animals as Leaders, and Metallica, varied spices adding to a striking proposition in sound matched by a live presence which has increasingly earned acclaim and attention as the band shared stages with bands such as Bleed From Within, Carcer City, Demoraliser, Martyr Defiled, and Continents over the past year or so. E.D.E.N is a fierce nudge on broader awareness and recognition, and though for some it might be a creative turbulence too far such the intensive nature of the EP, Islasorna will surely be a name on a much wider roar from hereon in.

The EP opens with Obliteration and a melodic twang of guitar which alone soaks the air in a sultry yet slightly portentous suggestiveness. It is a hint quickly realised by the forceful beats of Michael Devlin and the vocal roar of Justin Dilworth. At first their presence only brings a small element of imposing urgency with it, a slither of increased intensity but also a stronger and darker apocalyptic hue which toys with and ignites the imagination. At the song’s climax a voice skirts the senses and provokes thoughts, menacingly flirting from the shadows before the following Achluophobia emerges to bring its words to thicker destructive reality.

Islasorna cover_Reputation Radio/RingMaster ReviewThe second track instantly expels a djent spawned predation around a blaze of vocal scowling and sonic intimidation from the guitars of Dean Watson and Jamie McArthur. As the first track, it is more a prowling ravenous predator than a vicious onslaught yet the pathological agitation its title suggests is fuel to the attention gripping enterprise and imagination cast by the band. Simultaneously the track is savage and seductive, extremes entwining and in revolt against each other as the listener is dragged through a landscape of metalcore and grindcore to name two of the open essences sculpted in a progressive and experimental voracity.

Judas in comparison is a calmer incitement on ears and senses, and opens with a thoroughly engaging melodic caress of guitar courted by the darker lures of Mark Brunton’s bass. It is a fascinating start, the equally mellow tones of Dilworth adding to the tantalising proposal. The feeling that something is brewing is never far from the surface though and by midway the brief but potent offering has uncaged a caustic climate of sound and emotion though it is still with restraint as the band reveals more of their diversity in songwriting, sound, and individual prowess. Its magnetic bellow makes way for the harsher but no less inventive Choices. The song continues the melodic and dazzling progressive elements of its predecessor but cages them in a jagged confrontation of riffs and barbarous rhythms, both Devlin and Brunton as carnivorous in their attack as the guitars are melodically riveting. Arguably the encounter fits into the more expected template of progressive metal and the inspirations to the band mentioned earlier, yet it is a perpetual provider of unique twists and senses spearing sonic flirtation again setting the band apart from the crowd.

Creative mania returns in full lung bursting vocal and noise driven devilry next with 4-2-8, the track full warfare on the senses as Dilworth reveals his broadest vocal derangement yet and musically the band twists like a sonic and rhythmic dervish. The track is outstanding, not necessarily better than any other upon E.D.E.N but staking a favourite claim with increasing success over every listen. Its rigorous and rugged turbulence is instantly contrasted by the EP’s closing title track where once more Islasorna pull back the shades on another side of their imagination. An initial breeze of melodic beauty kisses ears and thoughts first, keys colouring a shadowed ambience with elegant charm before evolving into an electro rock seducing around militant rhythms and a union of harsh and harmonic vocals. Post hardcore, scream, post rock, they are all amongst the spices within the encounter, whispering hues within the enthralling finale going towards further proof of the band’s originality.

As outstanding as it is, E.D.E.N still feels like it is only the first big step of the band, one loaded with such promise that it suggests it is merely going to be the springboard for bigger, bolder exploits ahead. This only adds to the excitement of the emergence of potentially a new force in European metal.

The E.D.E.N EP is available from June 1st through all stores.

http://Facebook.com/islasornauk

RingMaster 01/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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ISLASORNA REVEAL THEIR E.D.E.N’ ON 1st JUNE

Islasorna Online Promo shot

SCOTTISH PROGRESSIVE METAL OUTFIT ‘ISLASORNA’ NATIONALLY RELEASE THEIR DEBUT EP ‘E.D.E.N’ ON 1st JUNE, THROUGH ALL STORES.

Spawned from the depths of Edinburgh, and conceived at the start of 2014, Scottish experimental metal crew ‘Islasorna’ have picked up a legion of fans throughout the far North. And through dedicated and rampant gigging, word is beginning to spread about the band’s high octane live shows further afield in the UK. Adding more fuel to their fiery cause, the progressive metallers have supported the likes of Bleed From Within, Carcer City, Demoraliser, Martyr Defiled and Continents.

Consisting of vocalist Justin Dilworth, Guitarists Jamie Mcarthur & Dean Watson, bassist Mark Brunton and drummer Michael Devlin, Islasorna fuse together colossal riffs, tech playability and even hints of jazz to the melting pot. With inspiration coming from everyone from The Devil Wears Prada, Northlane, Whitechapel, Sikth, The Dillinger Escape Plan and Animals as Leaders to Metallica, the band offer a sound that is inherently steeped in metal, but undoubtedly pushes the envelope.

Islasorna are set to break out to the UK with the official release of their earth shattering debut EP, ‘E.D.E.N.’. The opening track ‘Obliteration’ pulls you in with its haunting atmospherics and pummelling drop beats. The five-some then crank it up with the sludgy riff assault of ‘Achluophobia’, which immediately grabs you by the nether regions. The band showcase their astute use of dynamics for the hypnotic track ‘Judas’, while the guttural attack of ‘Choices’ slams your eardrums, and the craft of ‘4-2-8’, framed by blistering guitars and jagged rhythms, is just pure intensity. The metallers draw the record to a close with the EP’s namesake ‘E.D.E.N.’, and it’s an eerie slab of moody heavy electronica which displays the band’s growing maturity. With shows in the can for this Summer, Islasorna are bursting to rise.

-ISLASORNA RELEASE ‘E.D.E.N.’ ON 1st JUNE THROUGH ALL DIGITAL OUTLETS-

Islasorna cover

http://Facebook.com/islasornauk

When We Were Wolves – Heartless

When We Were Wolves

At the end of our review of the deeply pleasing The More Things Change, The More We Stay The Same EP from Welsh post hardcore band When We Were Wolves, we added that this was “still a band in the making”. Now the Bridgend quintet unleash its successor in the stunning shape of Heartless to show that they are a creative tempest which has arrived at its first pinnacle whilst still offering the potential of even greater things to come. The five track fury of invention and intensity is a startling encounter exploring a broader and more mature landscape than its predecessor yet still passionately driven by the band’s now distinctive and imaginative post hardcore intent.

Formed in 2011, When We Were Wolves has built a rich reputation for their live presence, which has seen them play alongside the likes of Bury Tomorrow, The Blackout, Devil Sold His Soul, Malefice, Born Of Osiris, Exit Ten, Betraying The Martyrs, Martyr Defiled, and Carcer City. Add that to the success of The More Things Change, The More We Stay The Same and it is fair to say that anticipation for its successor was ripe and full, a hunger swiftly sufficed as Heartless rampages through the ears.

Opening track Dying On The Inside straight away lays a feisty glaze of riffs over ears, their lure fusing a punk and metal attraction before the rampaging beats of drummer Josh Baker uncage their full weight upon the sonic turbulence. The bass of Matt Shaw prowls the gripping brawl of sound with relish whilst vocalist Mitch Bock roars with emotion and animosity. Riffs and grooves spill equal animosity through the craft and invention of guitarists Steve French and Rhod Evans too, their intensive proposal alone creating a riveting baiting of thoughts and emotions within the song. It is a stunning start to the EP, the track twisting and embracing the senses with enthralling imagination whilst further inescapable temptation is expelled through the outstanding and impressive vocal delivery of Bock. Like a collision between While She Sleeps and Slipknot with a twist of Cancer Bats, the song is an irresistible contagion.

Coating ears in an initial melodic yet fiery embrace, the next up The Devil You Know soon twists into a ferocious beast of vocal hostility and sonic antagonism. It is a demanding and compelling start but taken to another level as Bock PromoImageunveils more of his superb clean and melody rich vocals which had already enhanced its predecessor. Equipped and skilled to merge both extremes, he proves himself on Heartless to be one of the more exciting frontmen around. An essence of Dead Til Friday prompts thoughts towards the song but again a mere whisper to a sound undeniably belonging to When We Were Wolves. Predatory and seductive, it is a riveting adventure matched immediately by the voracious Blind. A sonic haze starts it off before grooves come out of the woodwork with insidious intent as pounding rhythms bring their equally enslaving thunderous textures. Vocals also explode with wide variety and unbridled passion across the destructive maelstrom smothering the senses. It is an exceptional savagery with a lingering spite ensuring it is one of the pinnacles of the release.

The following Confession takes its spark from the previous track, staggered riffs and venomous grooves an intensive and welcome intrusion as rhythms cast their heavyweight provocation. There is no respite from the vocals either initially, the fighting tones of Bock showing no mercy until his seamless slip into the equally impacting clean and velvet delivery he possesses. The encounter is a masterfully invigorating tempest which like most of the songs, perfectly sculpts its relatively brief length for the most dramatic impact before making way for the closing title track. Lighter in its presence in comparison to the last couple of tracks, Heartless is a radiantly emotive song, a melodically fired croon of sonic enterprise and vocal intensity which steals attention and ardour with Bock again exceptional though well-matched by the skilled sonic and rugged rhythmic charm of the rest of the band.

The Heartless EP is a major triumph for When We Were Wolves and the British post hardcore scene. The Welsh band has not only found its own voice but set out a new vat of promise and invention to inspire even greater anticipation for their next offerings.

The Heartless EP is available digitally through all stores on Monday 22nd September.

https://www.facebook.com/whenwewerewolves1

RingMaster 21/09/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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Icons – Lifesigns EP

Icons band

Crafting their own very appetising take on metalcore, UK band Icons certainly on the evidence of their latest EP Lifesigns, has a potentially rich and potent future ahead of them. Consisting of four tracks which rage at, coax in, and invigorate the senses, the release is a sizeable introduction to the Leicester hailing metallers. It is fair to say that there is not a major expulsion of genre shaking invention or sounds from band on the release but plenty to suggest that the quintet is capable of such feats in the future as they evolve and hone their songwriting.

Formed in 2011, Icons has earned a strong reputation with their live performances alongside bands such as Bleed From Within, Hacktivist, Martyr Defiled, Continents, Giants and Napoleon. With a collective blend of inspirations from the likes of The Ghost Inside, Architects, Parkway Drive, Periphery, Northlane, Bleed From Within and Heart of a Coward, the five piece conjure up propositions which certainly do not slip past ears and attention easily. Their songs provide a skilfully layered alignment of sounds and textures; hooks and rhythms spearing the creative landscape with equal purpose and passion to the voracious vocals. It is a raw and uncompromising endeavour but one with a wealth of enticements to seduce and transfix the imagination.

Opener Cataclysm strides into view with jack booted rhythms and a caustic sonic haze, its infectious enticing soon permeating ears and Icons Lifesigns EP Covereagers thoughts. Taking a breath to establish its intent, the track then winds its sinewed riffs around the senses as the beats of Alan Forrest punch with a sure antagonistic touch. It is fiery bait which is soon under the squalling vocals attack of Neil Vernon, his coarse roars a scathing incitement within the emergence of sonic enterprise cast by guitarists Nick Toutjiaris and Joe Newman. Clean vocals join the picture next to bring a warm temperance to the still blustery gruff narrative, the union of both within the creative tempest of sound stalked by the great throaty bass provocation of bassist Chris Riley, magnetic in the least and thrilling in its strongest moments. As proven across the whole release though the ‘weakest’ elements are those vocals, both clean and raw deliveries undeniably potent instigators of the lyrical climate but at times landing wide of the levels musically the track elevates to.

Though the next up Fall of Avarice offers a similar scenario, it is not as big an issue as it might suggest with both styles working well enough but a further honing to rest easier within the maelstrom of inventive sound whilst still achieving their intensive aims would seem a wise move. The second track twists and flirts with the senses through intensive riffs, muscular rhythms, and a rigorously designed entanglement of sonic enterprise which holds the imagination capture from its opening play. The cleaner group vocal calls work perfectly it has to be said providing an anthemic pull which further entices the appetite to reconfirm that those vocal nags are minor for the main.

The latest single, Helios steps up next with viciously shaped grooves and melodic shards of adventure, the combination another easily accessible lure to immerse bravely within. The track creates scenery of emotive reserve and ravenous spite, both evocative propositions which merge fluidly together as the sounds expand their resourceful premises. It is not as striking and imposing as the previous songs with the vocals again raising small questions but still a song sparking keen attention and a lingering success for itself and band which is very easy to often return to.

The closing Hitch 22 opens on a rugged storm of strictly invasive riffs, deeply barbed hooks, and a contagious rabidity which instantly secures focus and hunger. Stretching its muscle flexing arms around the ears, the song proceeds to jab and scythe its way into the passions whilst simultaneously lighting the imagination with gentle but evocative short melodies and again superb group vocals, something they should definitely employ much more. The best track on the EP, it is a skilled cantankerous maelstrom which engrosses from start to finish and almost alone reveals all the promise within Icons to indicate that they are a real prospect as an emerging force.

There is plenty more within Icons to come, a continued evolution needed to see the band find a spotlight outside of the crowd but Lifesigns indicates that all the weaponry and craft is there waiting to be bred into something unique as it provides a very satisfying and enjoyable base to start from.

The Lifesigns EP is available now @ http://iconsuk.bandcamp.com/ as a buy now name your price download.

http://www.facebook.com/Iconsmetal

8/10

RingMaster 15/05/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Fall of Eden – Memoirs

The Fall of Eden - Memoirs - 579744_571389426213269_1562750525_n

Scottish metalcore band The Fall of Eden, certainly on the evidence of their debut EP Memoirs, is an emerging force which could and should be a regular spot on the radar. Still relatively young as a proposition, the Glasgow quintet have made their introduction with a release seeping promise at every corner whilst providing an enterprising and enjoyable fury. It is fair to say that this is a force still in evolution and that the EP lacks a truly standalone distinction to other strong and hungry genre bands out there, but there is definitely something compelling and inviting about their invention and imagination which ignites eager anticipation for their future.

Consisting of vocalist Kevin Blaney, guitarists Matt McLeod and Kieran Ward, bassist Sean Breslin, and Hamish McGowan on drums, The Fall of Eden formed in early 2012 and took little time in crafting and honing their first blaze of songs. Taking inspirations from the likes of Parkway Drive, August Burns Red, Bring Me The Horizon, Oceano, and Lamb Of God into their antagonistic sound and invention, the band began igniting stages locally and beyond with their powerful live performances and across the past year or so have played with the likes of Night Verses, Flood of Red, Surrender the Coast, Truth and It’s Burden, Martyr Defiled, Demoraliser, Heart In Hand, Here Comes The Kraken and Thy Art Is Murder. Their reputation has risen alongside their live energy and attack which debut release Memoirs can only accelerate and take to a wider awareness.

The release shows that the band’s sound stretches beyond simply metalcore, though it is the core to creative the furnaces posing as coversongs. With a melodic flame licking at the heart of the tracks and an adventurous imagination equally coaxing out bravery in the songwriting, Memoirs opens with The Fall and instantly pushes the imagination and thoughts into action. An atmospheric brew raises its breath first, an ambience already being worried by the impending vocals of Blaney. As he and the intensity reaches forward to confront the ear, the track explodes into an invitingly textured provocation, the first rage quick and blunt before stepping into a more predatory stalking of ears and senses. The guitars wind sonic endeavour around the muscular core and rhythmic testing to push the breath of unpredictability and keep the listener’s expectations challenged throughout, and though debatably some of the changes and shifts are not as fluid as possibly they could be it matters little within a track which is unafraid to try things and take the listener on an adventurous ride.

The following Broken Lullaby takes a more deliberate stalking of the senses, riffs and rhythms caging off any escape with sinew clad rapaciousness whilst a melodic cast of craft and intrigue marks the way for the vocal scowls of Blaney to enjoyably bruise the air.  One of the more straight forward and expected tracks on the EP, it still forges a hold and satisfaction which cannot be dismissed or taken lightly. It maybe lacks the imagination of its predecessor and thus the potency and success but nevertheless easily continues the strong and pleasing introduction.

Both Pressure and A Poet, A Bard and a Baron keeps things boiling, the first scowling heavily with a hardcore aspect to the attack, a flavour which has already had moments of success in the opening pair, whilst its successor through a ‘gentler’ melodic embrace shows the expanse and depth of the songwriting and sound already seeded within the band. The pair of songs forms the pinnacle of Memoirs, their aggressive and uncompromising but enterprising tirade and inventive drama respectively,  major reasons why The Fall of Eden raises a hunger and assumption that the band has a bright future and plenty to offer UK intensive metal.

The closing Pavor Nocturnus is a decent enough conclusion but does feed the expectations which seemingly come with any new metalcore band. With a fire bred passion and undoubted thoughtful craft though, the track avoids feeling like an anti-climax after the quality of the previous two tracks and keeps that keen appetite fully engaged with release and band.

Expect to hear more of The Fall of Eden as they appear to have all the tools to emerge as something fresh and incendiary within metalcore, those whispers vibrant and potently brewing within the Memoirs EP. It is a release well worth checking out especially as it comes as a Name Your Price download at http://thefallofeden.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TheFallOfEden

7.5/10

RingMaster 23/10/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Doomed From Day One – Nine Fingers

Doomed From Day One Online Promo Shot

It has been two years since the release of their acclaimed debut EP The Wasted World but on the evidence of its successor Nine Fingers, UK progressive death metallers Doomed From Day One have not been resting on its laurels. The new EP is six tracks of confronting and impacting enterprise which leaves predictability a dormant factor and intrigue a toxic substance within its consuming presence. The Surrey quintet has honed their already impressive songwriting and intensive sound into a real predator of senses and emotions, an accomplished brutality which is sculpted by feisty invention and incendiary imagination, and though arguably the new release lacks those moments which impact after the event, it is a magnetically striking and creatively dominant beast during in its company.

Formed in 2009, the Guildford band has been on a formidable rise through the ranks of UK extreme metal, their passionate fanbase recruited not only by their first release but their formidable live reputation and presence.  Through impressive shows alongside the likes of Malefice, Martyr Defiled, The Defiled, Gallows and most recently Black Dahlia Murder, Sylosis, Bleed From Within and Thy Art Is Murder, as well as world media acclaim, Doomed From Day One has earned a worldwide attention which you can only imagine the strength of Nine Fingers will cement and accelerate. Released as the band share dates with Red Seas Fire and Fathoms, the EP confirms Doomed From Day One as one of the most potent, imagination tipping encounters with an immense depth of promise.

The title track opens up the release; an enthralling instrumental which introduces itself and the album with a sunrise of excellent guitar Doomed From Day One Cover Artworktemptation and orchestral bred elegance. It then evolves into a fire borne sonic blaze of craft and evocative textures whilst melodic flames scorch the ears for a wholly persuasive invitation into the release and the following Cut And Hunt. The second track takes little time in testing the senses with a crippling array of spiteful rhythms, corrosive riffery, and equally caustic gutturally primed vocals from Sean Scott. The track rages and ravages with craft and malevolence but equally exports a range of hooks and barbed grooves which dig deep and contagiously from within the dangerous tempest. It is a breath-taking companion which increases it’s tempting further with an excellently progressive, almost avant-garde teasing from the guitars of Charlie Griffiths and Charlie Frederick which evolves from their persistently impressive skills.

The immense full start to Nine Fingers is backed up by At Graves End, a song which falls short of the plateau just set but creates its own unique stature of imaginative and mercurial invention. As the drums of Daniel Ristic sculpt a web of bone splintering craft and force, the guitars again send spirals of sonic ingenuity through the heart of the vitriolic intensive track whilst vocals quall and scar the surface of the ear with the great tones Scott first successfully unveiled on the EPs predecessor. Creatively antagonistic and fuelled by enthralling enterprise, the song drifting into a progressive jazz spawned landscape at one point before returning as ferocious and dramatically impacting as it started, there is little to dismiss about the track but it does like most of the others lack that ignition to remain a potent instigator away from its destructive arms.

The Promise does verge on that break through, the delicious irritant of flesh scorching sonic toxicity and rhythmic barbarism a vicious alchemy which lays down the strongest inventive bait upon the EP. With the bass of Eifion Sweet prowling with predatory glee and menace across its length, the track like its predecessor is unafraid to explore a slower melodic beauty and progressive tapestry. The skill of the band and the imaginative songwriting is impressive and again bordering spellbinding but still without that lingering claw for the mind, though when it sounds this good in the claws of the song and EP is it really an issue?

Dread and In This Life Not The Next complete the release; the first an insatiable fury of lethal rhythms and riveting riffing which is just as inciting through its mordant touch with the vocals of Scott a ferocious maelstrom of passion and maliciousness upon the outstanding blend of vindictive and seductive musical craft. Personal favourite of all the tracks, it spears the body with imaginative violence to provoke the strongest satisfaction before its successor finishes things off with a thrilling torment sculpted by a technical fire of extreme and fertile aural retribution. The track unleashes everything which is good about the band and the release in a seven minute deeply pleasing scourge.

Nine Fingers is an excellent release which as mentioned only misses out on finding that one element which plays in thoughts and memory long after it takes its leave. All the same Doomed From Day One has created a release which when standing in front of the body feeds every want and hope for an extreme metal offering whilst reinforcing the band as one of the finest and most promising to emerge in the UK in recent years.

http://www.doomedfromdayone.co.uk/

8/10

RingMaster 21/10/2013

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Black Polaris – Life/Death EP

Blk Polaris

Following the impressive inventive and technically destructive furies of second album Empires of 2011 and the Envisage EP the following year, all expectations were that UK metalcore band Black Polaris would become one of the prominent forces within the country’s extreme metal scene. Awareness wise that has not quite happened yet for the inventive Royston, Herts quintet but on the evidence of their new EP Life/Death, the band are still on course to achieve that musically whilst such its new breath of technical and melodic temptation not to forget its violent voraciousness the other aspect should soon follow. The EP shows the band has matured and expanded their creative passion and craft with no expense to their renowned hostile aggressiveness and confrontational fire. It is another mighty treat from the band and possibly overall their best offering yet.

Formed in 2009, Black Polaris have fought through the usual obstacles laid before bands, line-up changes, lack of finances etc. continuing to evolve into a stronger more determined creative force. This has seen them earn acclaim not only for their previous releases but equally stage performances which has placed the band alongside bands such as Martyr Defiled, Eternal Lord, Seven Year Kismet, Devil Sold His Soul, This Is Colour, Eradication and many more as well as successful shows and tours across the UK. The five piece storm of vocalist Sam Burgess, guitarists Paul Futter and Gaz Groombridge, bassist Luke Jackson, and drummer Neil Prenty, now unleash their new furnace of intensity and provocative antagonism, a release which confirms all the earlier promise and declarations placed before the band whilst carving out another depth of texture and imagination to their caustic presence.

The title track intro open up the release, a sampled drama making an intriguing entrance to the quarrelsome encounter whilst into its a1409551889_2stride the track is a commanding enforcement upon the ear and senses with the almost convulsive rhythmic and riff attack a jagged seizure of attention and instant hunger. At less than three minutes, which includes the opening narrative the only complaint is that the compelling starter feels over before it begins and the wish it had been a fully-fledged assault strong, though admittedly soon forgotten once S.I.M consumes the ear with its initial sinister ambience erupting into a furnace of crippling rhythms behind a tempest of passionate melodic endeavour and sonic fire, all thrust home upon the ever squalling vocal venom of Burgess. The ambience of keys brings a warm almost soothing wash within the continually searing heat and spite of the song whilst as expected the band unveil a technically accomplished scythe of sound and imaginative fire, it keeping them still within comparisons to the likes of Meshuggah and In Flames.

Taken emerges next, again an evocative ambience caresses thoughts whilst a lone guitar designs a narrative within the atmospheric suggestion of an impending force, which is realised as the track expands its welcome and muscular arms into a magnetic maelstrom of corrosive vocals and belligerent rhythms courted by the rapacious jaws of guitar incitement and oppressive intensity.  Futter and Groombridge light up the track, sonic fascination honed into shards of melodic flame seduction within the persistently doom laden weighty breath of the song. A refined mix aflame between the extremes of death metal voracity and progressive metal temptation, the track without stealing the passions like others on the release leaves an enthralling touch on the senses.

The rabid Lost Souls is a monster of bestial predation, riffs and rhythms a pillaging provocateur of fear and intimidation whilst the carnally bred technical prowess shown is pure serpentine malevolence disguised as sirenesque mesmerism. Burgess ably backed by the vocals of Groombridge, rages with the deepest toxicity of spite and maliciousness to be found on the EP whilst musically the track is a juggernaut of a storm, the heaviest turbulent slab of anger on Life/Death and its pinnacle. Everything about it from the unpredictable sonic majesty and the ferocity of guitar, the blood and guts bass and drum entrapment through to the uncompromising vocals, the song is simply outstanding.

The release closes with The Tyrant, a truculent frenzied quarrel with the force and unbridled brawn of a bear and the sonic beauty and severity of a tornado. Again though, it is only part of the picture, Black Polaris veining it with a glowing seduction of melodic and progressively charmed elegance brought from a craft and imagination which simply captures the imagination. It completes in Life/Death, a release which finds the band at its most creative and exploratory but still within the enslaving grip of its equally impressive annihilatory temper. Thoughts are still debating if the EP is the best thing the band has done but it is certainly right up there whilst poking those same ideas with an even greater promise and assumption that Black Polaris will be one of the most potent forces in UK metal.

https://www.facebook.com/blackpolarisuk

8/10

RingMaster 08/08/2013

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When We Were Wolves – The More Things Change, The More We Stay The Same EP

When We Were Wolves Promo shot

Post hardcore bands and releases came thick and fast in 2012 with the momentum seemingly going to continue into this year. There was a strong and overall impressive depth to the sounds which stepped forward if many lacked that something to set them apart from the rest. Initially that was also the thought when allowing the debut EP from Welsh band When We Were Wolves to unleash its aggression and expressive heart on the senses. That notion was soon slapped into place though especially by the ferociously impressive central core of the release. It is fair to say When We Were Wolves is still determining a unique sound of its own but certainly from the clutch of earnest and passionate tracks making up the release the Bridgend quintet have it in hand.

Formed in mid-2011, the band has built up a loyal and eager following across South Wales and into England with their explosive live shows. To date they have impressively shared stages with the likes of Bury Tomorrow, Exit Ten, Pay No Respect, Martyr Defiled and Carcer City, as well as headlining their own riotous assaults on audiences. The More Things Change, The More We Stay The Same is about to wake up the rest of the UK with intense and well thought out songs which suggest and at times proves that post hardcore can be pleasingly adventurous and contagious.

All Good People Must Come To An End is an intriguing start to the release which did leave some uncertainty in its wake. The When We Were Wolves Cover Artworkheartfelt vocals of Mitch Bock are a caustic and compelling squall over an emotive endeavour from the rest of the band. It is a brief track which asks questions and leaves thoughts open if a little undecided of whether the EP would emerge as something special or another similarly gaited encounter as from many other genre bands. The answer is soon proven to be the former as firstly Under The Water thunders into view. Big grasping riffs assault the ear with scything sonics and thumping rhythms adding their support whilst an expanse of acidic vocal cries blisters the senses. It is not exactly ground breaking but throughout prods and enthrals especially with the excellent clean vocals of Bock adding emotive weight to the inventive guitar work of Steve French and Rhod Evans. The song goes where you expect it too but still offers a riveting and fully satisfied experience through its fresh and keen encounter.

It is with the following pair of songs though that the band stakes its claim as possibly being something special in the making. This Is Where We Belong and Your Sick Fantasy are exceptional, two tracks which leave one drooling at the promise and imaginative confrontations before the senses. The first seizes the ear with predatory riffs which beckon rather than stalk and the again excellent and overwhelming rhythms of drummer Josh Baker, his demanding beats inescapable and ably supported by the hungry bass lines of Ben Taylor. As the vocals rub thoughts raw the track twists and turns into numerous asides and shadows, all inventive and ardour inciting. Each member of the band is a fiery or intimidating aspect coming together for a furnace of intensity and creativity. There are moments which are familiar in the song, as in all tracks to be honest, but When We Were Wolves deliver them and their unique imaginative moments with a relish and fire very few of the other emerging bands accomplish. The second of the two snarls and gnaws with intensity and a controlling presence which leads one into the lyrical and passionate heart of the track. It drags you willingly through dark distant corners and in the face challenges which scorch and captivate. Tough arguably lacking definition at times the song is an immense and unforgiving treat which only marks the band further as ones to watch.

The release closes with Hounds which features Continents vocalist Phil Cross. The track is another raging affair with further imagination coming through the excellent key intro and building climaxes of energy and passion throughout. It is a great mix of aggression and intrusive melodic breaths which without firing up the same flames as the previous two songs leaves one a satisfied and willing recruit to it and the band’s enterprise.

When We Were Wolves is still a band in the making but as The More Things Change, The More We Stay The Same EP shows, it is also group of young musicians who are moving in the right impressive direction.

www.facebook.com/whenwewerewolves1

RingMaster 14/01/2013

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