Chandrian Kill – Bring Out Your Dead

Maybe there should be no surprise the craft and magnetism to the Bring Out Your Dead EP, the debut release from British outfit Chandrian Kill, but it still makes for a strikingly unexpected and attention entangling introduction. The band is the creative union of vocalist Nic Whitmore who previously fronted Number One Son and songwriter/guitarist Ted Clark renowned for his past creativity as part of Moesaboa and Life in the Making. Both men have been a potent part of the UK metal scene and are looking likely to continue so as Chandrian Kill.

Clark began writing for Chandrian Kill a couple of years back; in time contacting Whitmore and luring him back from his long break from music to develop and arrange the songs. This led to the duo entering the studio this past March to record the three tracks making up Bring Out Your Dead. Subsequently mixed and mastered by Brad Tuttle (Seventh Studios), the EP has emerged a riveting proposition with its weave of predacious melodic metal with the eager animation of alternative metal aided by more than a hint of the gnarly attributes of djent.

Bring Out Your Dead opens up with new single I Collide. Instantly voice and guitar link up in a rich melodic lure as darker rhythms keenly prowl. It is a warm enticement though swiftly showing its volatile nature as irritability surfaces through djent natured trespasses and rawer throated vocals. Similarly there is an increase of fire to the melodic enterprise as the pair creates a cauldron of contrasts and emotive intimation in the music alone, Whitmore’s ever alluring vocals sharing that internal conflict within the exploration of the external one perpetually working away through our lives.

It is a captivating introduction to release and band which is as powerfully backed by the calmer but even darker Filter Off. Its entrance is a sonic mist of sorts but soon spreading for the wiry melodic and rich vocal enticement of the track to involve ears and imagination. As with the first, shadows lurk and rise in vocals and sound as the track revolves its unpredictable spiral of emotive suggestion. The turns become more voracious and antagonistic as the song proceeds, each twist a new fresh proposal to get enticed by with an increasing appetite.

Remain Alive concludes the release, the track casting its own individually melodic flames within another tempestuous climate. Its turmoil though has a stronger temper in the melodic web of the song, keeping it relatively restrained throughout though it is always bubbling away trying to break free. It is a tension crafted by Clark which is emulated in the vocal dexterity of Whitmore, the pair creating a trespass as fearsome as it is seductive.

The first in a sequence of planned EPs, Bring Out Your Dead as forcibly pleasures as it mercifully captivates. The band’s sound has been referenced to the likes of Deftones and Stone Sour, and there are moments when Skyscraper (the great nineties rock outfit) flicker in thoughts, but truthfully Chandrian Kills have a sound individual to all and just as flavoursome as all mentioned.

Bring Out Your Dead is out now via Bar3 Records.

https://www.facebook.com/Chandriankill/   https://twitter.com/ChandrianKill

Pete RingMaster 10/09/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Fear Me December – Crystallized

Every music lover can share a song or release which sparked the fight and defiance in them against either the world’s injustices or issues of a more intimate experience; encounters which trigger a renewed strength in their resistance. Fear Me December offer a quartet of such incitements within new EP, Crystallized; tracks which tap into the issues and resolve many suffer across varying areas. They are also four songs which have the body and spirit bouncing to soulful and boisterously rousing roars announcing Fear Me December as one rather potent proposition.

Formed in 2012 by Argentinian born vocalist/bassist Victoria Cabanellas and lead guitarist Valentin Macagno, Fear Me December began as a trio with the addition of drummer Emiliano. The band released their well-received debut EP, Who Cares in 2014 before taking the decision to relocate to the UK that same year. Basing themselves in Manchester, the band soon hits the live scene, touring the UK and playing festivals to begin sparking the same level of support and attention they garnered in their homeland. The departure of Emiliano back to Argentina could not stop the remaining pair from writing and working on their first album, the Matt Ellis recorded Between Violence And Silence released in 2016 with Chris Inman providing drums. 2017 saw the band’s current and stable line-up in place with Tony Small swinging the sticks and Stuart Woolley bringing rhythm guitar into the mix, the foursome now providing a rich statement of intent with the seriously magnetic Crystallized.

A creative tempest of aggressively melodic metal and rapacious heavy rock, the EP starts with Fight Me, a song surging with defiance and a rigorous confrontation from its first breath and the opening forceful rally of Small’s beats. It is an insurgence which is soon joined by the sonic impetus of the guitars and the darker throated threat of bass; it all uniting in a tempestuous front bursting with swift enterprise and the contagious presence of Cabanellas’ voice. Inescapably infectious without losing its threatening snarl and predacious bite, the track is superb emerging as one of our favourites this year; the web of metal and rock ‘n’ roll skilfully manipulated and manipulative.

Not Wired the Same follows, its rise less imposing but just as insistent as guitars weave an alluring invitation within a tide of hungry riffs and a throaty bassline to swing upon. With Small’s beats again sparing no measure of aggression even in the song’s slightly less ferocious charge compared to its predecessor, the track just as easily got under the skin with its lyrical exploration showing an understanding to depression and the instincts of the suicidal.

Two tracks in and the EP has proven one of the year’s most enjoyable offerings and does not let that success slip as it shares its final pair of tracks in This Is Not Ok and its title track. The first has a calmer stance soaked in melancholy but is soon releasing an instinctive catchiness rippling with energy and soulful intimation especially in its insistently rousing chorus. Its ebb and flow captivates; the caress and surges of the guitars igniting further enticement to match that of voice and another potent rhythmic provocation.

Closing song, Crystallized, is a fiery proposition; rom the off its flames veined by wiry tendrils of guitar and driven by the almost predatory touch of bass and drums. Cabanellas is again a winning lure in the midst of the bold adventure, even with her distance siren calls in the song’s relatively mellower twists. Providing a last furor of emotion and enterprise to the EP, the track is another truly magnetic and highly memorable moment, a description applying to each song and the release as a whole.

With Crystallized, Fear Me December has declared themselves ready to burst right out of the UK metal/rock scene into rich attention; with more of the same ahead it is hard to see them failing.

The Crystallized EP is released September 7th through all platforms.

https://www.fearmedecember.net/   https://www.facebook.com/fmdband/   https://twitter.com/FearMeDec   https://www.instagram.com/fearmedecemberuk/

 Pete RingMaster 07/09/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Naberus – Hollow

Around seven years after emerging upon the Australian Metal scene, Naberus released their debut album, The Lost Reveries. It was a well-received offering earning critical praise and confirming the Melbourne outfit’s potent presence within their national metal landscape. Now the quintet has unleashed its successor in the shape of the ravenously resourceful and compelling Hollow and it is fair to say the band has hit a whole new level.

The Lost Reveries was the band’s sound at the time at a pinnacle, one which was heavily influenced by melodic death and thrash metal, a mix honed over previous tracks and EPs since day one. Whilst Hollow also revels in those hues it reveals an embracing of a far broader template including essences of groove, nu, and technical metal. Everything about the new album is a growth from its predecessor, one which maybe will be a step too far for some original fans but will surely recruit a whole new tide of fresh appetites. At fourteen tracks it is a bulky proposal for sure which flirts with overstaying its time but one which pretty much constantly holds its strength and lure throughout before leaving with a bang.

Mixed by Henrik Udd (Bring Me the Horizon, Architects, A Breach of Silence) and mastered by Ermin Hamidovic (Architects, Periphery, Devin Townsend), Hollow launches at the listener with the outstanding Slaves. Immediately the guitars of Dan Ralph and Dante Thompson entangle ears with their sonic wires as the vocal snarl of James Ash harries ears. Djent spices infest the intensive blaze as other flavours collude in its rapacious web around the scything beats of Chris Sheppard and the predatory growl of Jordan Mitchell’s bass. Familiarity and individuality merge in its intensive roar, they all going to make a savagely raucous yet skilfully woven captivation.

The following Space To Breathe is just as swiftly imposing but inviting, taking a less invasive stance initially as its elements settle before uniting in its own ferocious trespass. Ash’s vocals again impress with their not vast but strong diversity within the emerging rich tapestry of sound. There are essences of bands like Spineshank and Static X to the track at times but equally it lusts after death and extreme metal textures with the same fervour and invention before the superb Split In Two uncages its own similarly but individually woven tempest. Harsh and melodic strains in both vocals and music make an easy union as the imagination in songwriting incites their drama, the track continuing the explosive success of the first pair ensuring that Hollow is already a riveting proposal.

Both Shadows and Webs nag the senses whilst seducing attention; the first a sonic harassment as adventurous as it is predatory with its successor, deceitfully calm at its start, a subsequent cauldron of fiercely simmering intensity with scalding eruptions and a persistently bubbling enterprise. True uniqueness could be said to be less potent within the two yet everything about them and all songs is as fresh and inventive as you could wish, the album’s title track further evidence. Its enmity is a harsh fury from the start, searing trespass and rhythmic lashing entangled in the sonic imagination of the guitars and the collage of vocal incitement. It makes for a dramatic and dynamic assault which just hits the spot like a sledge hammer.

Through the likes of the belligerently tenacious I Disappear, the corrosive reflection of The End and Seas Of Red with its almost feral tides and melodic fire, the album continues to delve into malice, aggression, and different degrees of variety in their individual characters. It is fair to say that the latter two of the three did not ignite the same energy of passion and acclaim as those previously within Hollow yet all easily enticed and pleasured before The Maze had ears lost to its creative course. Living up to its name, the thrilling song is a tangle of grooves and melodic vines within a formidable confrontation, each tunnelling through song and psyche alike.

My Favorite Memory similarly springs a spiralling union of endeavour within its dark catacomb but its mercurial exploration of emotion and sound quickly develops its own individual presence while Fading with far more savage jaws challenges and erupts upon the senses with enterprise and inventive dexterity, every member of the band creating a simultaneous threat and temptation within the track.

The album is closed up by firstly The Burrow and finally The Depths, both tracks leaving thick enticements in their wake for a swift return with the closing incitement within Hollow a labyrinth of irrepressible grooves and sonic wires through a lusty trespass of vocal and rhythmic animation. The track is another major moment within the release possibly its greatest following so many lofty peaks.

As a whole Hollow is a refreshing and rousing offering from a band deserving thick attention hereon in. Yes with so many tracks it might be a stretch in one go; a couple of times songs almost merging into each other in certain ways but each is an imagination and pleasure sparking assault in their own right and proving Naberus one exciting proposition.

Hollow is out now through Eclipse Records.

https://www.facebook.com/naberusband   https://twitter.com/NaberusOfficial

Pete RingMaster 10/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Power of Diversity: exploring the world of Scarleth

The Ukrainian metal scene is not the most active on our radar but we can introduce you to one band which more than warrants attention. It is Kiev hailing melodic metallers Scarleth. The past decade has seen them share stages at numerous shows and festivals with the likes of Blind Guardian, Rage, Ensiferum, Rotting Christ, Leaves’ Eyes, and Kalmah. Embracing an array of rich flavours their sound has grown into an ear grabbing proposition which will reveal another fresh breath in the quintet’s upcoming new album. We had the pleasure to find out more about the band, release, and more with guitarist Victor.

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

Hello! Nice to talk to you 🙂 I’m Victor, leader and founder of the band.

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

The band was formed in 2005 by myself (Victor Morozov). First line-up included both of my sisters (Renata – vocals, Nina – keyboards).

After that, numerous line-up changes took place until current line-up has finally appeared:

Victor Morozov – guitar

Yana Kovalskaya – keyboards

Ekaterina Kapshuk – vocals

Igor Chumak – bass

Philipp Kharouk – drums

The band was originally formed in Donetsk, Ukraine. Basically, it was my idea to form a band. As a teenager, I was impressed by such bands as Deep Purple and Black Sabbath, so I wanted to form my own band. Ritchie Blackmore was my hero, he is the reason I picked up guitar to play.

Have you been/are involved in other bands before? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now?

SCARLETH is the first and the only band for Victor and Ekaterina, both of them haven’t played in other bands before.

Yana was in the following bands before SCARLETH: Stella Vespera (2009–2012), Luna Dream (2012-2014), Dante (2013-2015).

Philipp was part of these bands before he joined SCARLETH: B.W.N., Trapped In Tremble, Maleficar, Vyhr Grez, Kolard, Body Juice.

Igor played in few bands before SCARLETH, but that was too long ago to remember their names 🙂

Current line-up of SCARLETH has been around for about 2 years now.

I don’t think previous bands influenced us in any way; Scarleth has its own style which is constantly evolving.

What inspired the band name?

SCARLET was just a cool simple name which came to my sister’s mind 🙂 I only added “h” to the end of the word, so it looks more “metal”.

We also like this name because it doesn’t limit our musical style in any way. We can play anything we want under this title.

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

At the start, band was planned as cover band. But right after the start, our own songs begin to appear, so we’ve had short time with cover songs.

As for sound, we always wanted to sound different to others that is why we try to include as many different elements as possible to our songs.

And the same ideas and inspirations still drive the band when it was fresh-faced?

It’s the same – passion for music and wish to give good music to our fans and listeners. We never placed money or fame as main driving-force. Making good music which we like and playing it is most important for us.

 Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved?

It became heavier, more modern. The new album will be even more into this direction. But also it will touch pop-metal genre which is new for us. It will be interesting record, so don’t forget to buy it when it will be released and support our band.

And that has been an organic movement of sound or more the band deliberately wanting to try new things?

That is natural – we do not plan any changes. We just evolve as people, and our music evolves together with us. And this is really interesting journey. We are happy to be who we are.

You mentioned your own specific spark to make music and 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?

I think life itself is main source of inspiration. Travelling, movies, computer games, anything we do – has its influence.

As for bands who has impact on us I can say – Within Temptation, Black Sabbath, Amaranthe.

Is there a particular process to the songwriting within the band?

Yes. We start with simple melodic idea or riff then create song structure. Lyrics are created after that. Most of our songs are written this way. But not all of them, there are always exceptions.

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

From life situations, from something that really grabs our souls. It may be scene from movie or just something happened to us on the road. Just about anything. Life has so many unexpected moments, you know 🙂

Could you give us some background to your new album?

Our latest release is called The Silver Lining, which was released back in 2015. It includes nine tracks we are really proud of, I think these are the best we’ve done so far.

All the tracks on the CD are very different to each other, so if you like diversity in music – we can really recommend to give it a try.

Album was recorded in Kiev in Morton Studio. Max Morton is our good friend; he is really professional sound engineer and sound producer, so we should thank him for great sound on this CD.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind its songs.

I think you are asking about lyrics? Lyrics of our songs are as diverse as is the music. You can find quite interesting stuff besides just regular “love songs” or “freedom songs”. I think I should avoid spoilers, so it will be more interesting for you to listen to the songs yourselves 🙂

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?

We like to finish everything before going to the studio. But sometimes great ideas appear during recording, so we take them with pleasure. It’s always cool not to know what will happen next 🙂

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

We are big fans of performing our music live. It’s really important for us. When you play live, you can feel band’s energy and reaction of your fans. That is main value for us as artists.

Travelling to festivals may be not easy, but performance itself is always rewarding.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and across the world. How have you found it?

You are right – it is not easy, and we are still in the process of getting through. We can only suggest to believe in your own music, play it as much as you can and do everything for it to be heard. Never say die 🙂

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and access to your music is or is maybe out of your hands a little?

Internet helped us a lot. We can use those tools to get our music to the public, it is very important. However, illegal downloads are also take place, and that is not a good thing. But anyway, I think internet is a really good thing for band’s promotion.

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

Thank you! Listen to good music, be yourselves, just live and do what you really like 🙂 See you soon on the road!

Explore the sounds and imagination of Scarleth further @

http://scarleth.com.ua/   http://www.facebook.com/scarlethmetal   http://www.instagram.com/scarlethband/   http://youtube.com/scarlethband

Pete RingMaster 07/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Of Allies – Night Sky

As release by release they have realised and pushed on the promise which came with their first steps into the UK rock scene, Of Allies has similarly step by step grown into one of the most riveting and exciting prospects within its grasp. Because of the potential and craft shared through their previous EPs, and enjoyment found, anticipation for their first album has been patient and increasingly eager with the reward being one rather wonderful encounter going by the name of Night Sky.

Emerging in 2013, Of Allies soon had intrigue and pleasure stoked with the release of their first EP, Tempers the following year. It was a beyond solid and skilfully accomplished introduction which suggested bigger and bolder things to come, that suggestion part realised and supported by its successor, the Fragments EP in 2015. Everything has now come together within Night Sky, all the promise and craft uniting with adventurous enterprise for a kaleidoscope of sound and imagination where you know there is still a tease of even bigger, bolder things to come.

Night Sky opens with its title track, an atmospheric invitation cast by the guitars of Tom Hewson and Rich Nichols against an electronic fizz. The latter’s ever impressive vocals soon intensify the lure; a Voyager meets An Entire Legion like hue soaking the blossoming encounter. Soon the vigorous muscle and stroll of the song takes hold, a rich grip of sound never quite let of the leash and all the more impacting because of it.

It is a striking start swiftly rivalled by the following 17, its calm equally as magnetic and subsequently fevered as the energies and emotions boiling up around the swinging rhythms of drummer Danny Barrick and the alluring groan of Nick Tyldsley’s bass. Controlled yet tempestuous, the song is a rising infectious blaze of invention and captivation before making way for the equally compelling presence of Collapse. Its grumble is heavier, more rapacious, but superbly tempered by its melodic dexterity and the instinctive catchiness which runs through the Of Allies sound. Like Breaking Benjamin meets Shattered Skies, attention and appetite are quickly enslaved.

The haunting beauty and melancholic grace of brief instrumental Apparition leads the imagination into the waiting harmonic drama of Run. As guitars spin a beguiling web, Nichols croons with organic temptation being just as potently backed by the vocal chords of Hewson as the song flows evocatively through ears. It is a caress of aural sunlight with emotive shadowing which only draws the listener deeper into the heart and emotion of the album; a prowess as deftly conjured within the celestially warm and increasingly volcanic Waiting For You where progressive and melodic textures collude with metallic trespasses. With a capricious character and mercurial climate, the track is nothing less than thick enticement for ears and plaudits.

The steelier Lost Not Found has a firm grasp on rock pop boisterousness in its similarly skittish gait and eventful body while the lapping waves of scenic seduction and undercurrents of gloom clad aural thoughts within the suggestive slither that is Drifting leads the imagination into the spatial and immersive fineness and deceptive calm of Open Sea. It too has a dark edge and underlining predaciousness which perfectly aligns with the heated drama of voice and sonic enterprise.

The warm atmospheric succour of Solace lifts emotions up from those darker hues, the instrumental piece as provocative as it is manipulative before passing an open imagination over to easily the best track within Night Sky. The open ingenuity of all songs frames the sheer magnificence of CMD-Q. Straight away post punk instincts are gnawing on the passions, guitars and bass linking up in agitated discord and melodic trespass as beats scythe across their glory and vocals skilfully wrap their addictive throes. The track is just majestic but so frustrating when it just leaves lust hanging at two minutes.

It is a hunger soon satisfied though by the robust but graceful exploits of Glass House, Of Allies showing how inventive and artful they at aligning contrasting elements. It is a quality never far from the surface of their music even the slim moments of atmospheric instrumental haunting as shown once again in Stranded.

The album finishes with In Low Light, an echo of all the diversity and craft across the release in its own individual theatre of adventure and imagination with a bite to its nature and dynamic drama to its breath.

Night Sky is superb, easily one of the most captivating propositions this year and most importantly, one of the most enjoyable; both aspects only increasing listen by listen.

Night Sky is out now on iTunes.

 http://ofallies.com/    https://www.facebook.com/OfAllies/    https://twitter.com/weareofallies

Pete RingMaster 30/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Figures – Chronos

Barely giving the acclaim laden dust time to settle after the release of their self-titled debut EP this past February, Australian outfit Figures have just unleashed its predecessor in the similarly striking and fiercely enjoyable shape of Chronos. Offering five more slices of the Melbourne quintet’s alternative rock/melodic metal blend, the EP also has a new fresh breath and seeming richer maturity which defies the mere four months between releases. Obviously we cannot say when the songs of either release were written but the step is maybe surprising but greedily taken as Chronos eclipses the equally outstanding first offering from the band.

Formed as 2013 turned into its successor, Figures has risen up the ranks of attention with notably increasing success in recent times due to that critically acclaimed first EP and a dynamic live presence which has already seen the band  share stages with the likes of Caligula’s Horse, Twelve Foot Ninja, and Superheist. Broader focus and support for the band has without doubt been aroused these past handful of months and is sure to escalate again as Chronos is discovered by more and more. Instantly it has ears and attention in the palms of its creative hands as opener Recoil raggedly simmers into view and proceeds to uncage a gnarly groove as primal as it is magnetic. The guitar continues to growl and tempt as the lively rhythms of drummer Josh Sforzin and Jen Fletcher’s moody bassline join the blossoming affair; vocalist Mark Tronson soon in the mix with his agitated roar. Predatory and magnetic, the track needs mere seconds to entrap the senses and imagination, sealing the deal as Tronson’s melodic prowess unites with his rawer tones as steely metal and melodic rock textures equally collude.

The stunning start is matched by the equally dramatic and even bolder exploits of Alpha. Guitarists Paul Callow and Simon Edgell spring a lure of wiry riffs and sonic temptation around the harmonic delivery of Tronson, though as the music he allows harsher textures to escape his throat to keeps things unpredictable. Virulently infectious and persistently imaginative, the song is pure captivation; its heart earnest and body a tapestry of melodic and sonic intrigue with just the right richness of volatility to keep things intensely fascinating.

Tied Around follows, winding brooding grooves around ears as Fletcher’s bass groans with matching seduction while again Tronson enthrals with his impressive vocals. There is an agitation in the riffs and beats of Sforzin which is transferred to the steely grooves but tempered by the elegant beauty of melodies and harmonies floating across the song’s inner oasis. As with the first pair, creative magnetism is at play sparking an elevated greed which Point of Doubt feeds with its cosmopolitan almost shamanic nature. Sultrily exotic melodies align with anthemic rhythms within the song’s fiery blaze, its riveting landscape tempestuously sharing warm and irritable climates.

The EP concludes with Crying Door, a mellow melancholy lined croon shaped by keys and voice and their suggestive beauty, Tronson again a magnet in its midst. Darker hues walk the song’s edge, bassy shadows lurking as skittish beats court a more portentous edge. It is an entrancing close to a second seriously striking encounter with Figures. Musically the band has been compared to the likes of Incubus, Deftones, and Karnivool, all justified but add a touch of Voyager and possibly even Porcupine Tree and you get a fuller impression of what, to be honest, is a sound distinct to one truly exciting proposition.

Chronos is out now @ https://figuresbandofficial.bandcamp.com/album/chronos and other online stores.

http://www.figuresband.com/    https://www.facebook.com/figuresbandofficial

Pete RingMaster 21/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Pigeon Lake – Barriers Fall

Three years after the release of their striking and quickly acclaimed debut album, Tales of a Madman, Norwegian quartet Pigeon Lake return with its successor in Barriers Fall. The time between has seen changes within the band and a reassessment of the way forward; a shift sparking an evolution in sound too which is actually hard to pin down but openly inflaming the Oslo outfit’s new offering and release which like its predecessor at the time, will make a definite rival to those around it for one of the most essential investigations of the year.

Since emerging in the opening smiles of 2012, Pigeon Lake has grown to be one of the most compelling propositions on the melodic rock/metal landscape. Founded by vocalist/guitarist Christopher Schackt and completed by childhood friend and drummer Andreas Prestby and bassist Kenneth Stiansen, the band instantly sparked attention and praise with the I: Mindrape EP later in that first year. Its themes of domestic violence, sexual assault, and mental health were as striking as the raw sounds inciting ears. The three became four with the addition of lead guitarist Magnus Engemoen soon after while the following year saw Stiansen replaced by Anders Børresen. As their sound moved towards a flavouring more akin to the likes of Katatonia, Stone Sour, and The Ocean, the band’s live presence escalated before they got down to work creating Tales of a Madman, its release coming in the Autumn of 2014 and followed by the band heavily hitting the road again including taking their first steps touring Europe.

Linking up with Wormholedeath Records in recent times provided the spark for that previously mentioned re-assessment and the resulting highly amicable departure of Børresen and Prestby which was soon followed by the joining of bassist Håkon Bechholm and drummer Jonas Rønningen. Now the new line-up has unveiled Barriers Fall, an encounter feeling darker and rawer than that first album yet their most melodically seductive and inventively mature adventure yet.

The album opens with Ragnarok, grooves instantly wrapping ears with shadow lined radiance. There is a portentous edge to them though, nothing imposing but clearly there as rhythms jab and riffs collude around them. Magnetic straight away, the track settles down into a heavy prowl where all those imposing elements erupt for a few rapacious seconds before Schackt’s cleaner tones steer the tempest into kinder waters. Abrasive growls remain alongside him though as the song merges predatory and seductive sides, luring the imagination into a provocative squall of emotion and intensity.

It is a striking start soon eclipsed by the just as tempestuous roar of Lyra. Nagging riffs align with Schackt’s distinctive tones initially, the bass prowling around them before the incendiary heart of the track erupts with fiery melodies and antagonistic tendencies. Harmonies and melodic tempting bewitch as the song subsequently shares its evolving soundscape, contrasting textures blending their potencies in one beguiling encounter. There is definitely something of the aforementioned Katatonia to the song and indeed album but equally the likes of Opeth and Swallow The Sun come to mind though in all honesty Pigeon Lake here and across Barriers Fall only reveal their own character of sound and imagination.

The album’s title track is next, seducing with a mesmerising poetic melody and calm vocal reflection before Rønningen’s beats add increasing threat. In time, as things increasingly simmer with greater intensity, everything comes to a head, vocals spilling their psychosis as a sonic causticity descends. A relative relief in the storm comes with the closing breaths of the excellent track before the more mercurial presence of The Futility of You takes the listener into a controlled yet seemingly unstable emotional embrace. Again the music is a web of trespass and radiance, vocals matching the changeable mood with suggestive prowess as wiry hooks and almost toxic melodies tempt and trap the imagination. Epitomising the album as a whole, the track only reveals new layers and textures with every listen, each time within it seeing growing attraction and the blossoming of image painting thoughts.

Hide and Seek runs a fine line of control and lawlessness, its cauldron of corrosive energy restrained and held back by the harmonic and melodic beauty hugging the senses though it is never more than a breath from breaking free while within Sunder it shapes the predatory nature of a track which equally is as much an oasis of elegance and gentle repose as a turbulent tempest; a beauty and beast of inner and worldly turmoil.

Senses harrying riffs brings A Familiar Problem to bear on ears next, delicious bait opening up into a just as enticing fusion of roaming grooves and brooding rhythms around feral toned vocals. That previously mentioned raw element of the release has its head with the harsh throated presence of Schackt adding to the psychotic edge of the track with clean and melody woven radiancy just as powerful before Perfect Place casts its variable cyclone on the passions. Irresistible within its first moments and only stealing greater lust thereon in, the track breeds an addiction as rich as its unpredictability to provide if not the pinnacle, one of many.

Closing track Let’s Pretend takes the listener into one final embrace of emotional restlessness and creative anxiety, the song as the album whilst being intricately woven and layered is almost anarchic in its nature and heart. It is a fine end to another encounter with Pigeon Lake which simply blossoms and further impresses with every listen.  To be fussy, personal tastes would see Schackt’s throat scarring vocal side reduced to allow his excellent clean and emotionally suggestive tones to have an even larger say but it is a mere passing thought in a release which stirs every part of body and mind.

Barriers Fall is available now through Wormholedeath Records across most online stores.

http://www.pigeonlake.no/    https://www.facebook.com/PigeonLakeMusic/   https://twitter.com/PigeonLakeMusic

Pete RingMaster 17/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright