Matinée – Empty

matinee_RingMasterReview

With the melodic charms of debut album, These Days, still luring attention over a year later, backed by subsequent singles, the Italy hailing, London based Matinée are poised to unveil a new magnetic encounter posing as a single. Empty is a warm kiss on the senses, a melodic blush of elegance and catchy enterprise which equally is a rousing adventure hard to stop feet and enjoyment showing eager reactions to. The single in many ways echoes the creative exploits of that first album but at the same time pushes the invention and rich weave of flavours to new captivating heights.

Since emerging a handful of years back, Matinée has persistently impressed and fascinated a growing following of fans and attention. The success of their album has been matched and backed by a live presence which has drawn its own praise with the quartet sharing stages with the likes of Razorlight, Mystery Jets, Futureheads, The Wombats, Pete and the Pirates, British Sea Power and many more along the way. Empty sees the band linking up with Tony Doogan (Mogwai, Carl Barat, Glasvegas) again, the producer repeating his part of These Days, alongside Chris Geddes art_RingMasterReviewfrom Belle and Sebastian this time around.

Empty opens on a gentle rhythmic pulse and a charming drizzle of melodic rain, each synth cast drop a golden burst of warmth and enticement. The vocals of synth/guitarist Luigi Tiberio only adds to the attraction, his Italian accent bringing a touch of the Mediterranean and further infectiousness. Once the bolder, darker hues of Alfredo Ioannone’s bass and Alessio Palizzi’s lively beats join the affair on ears, the song is an enthralling blend of light and shadows amidst darker emotion and creative festivity.

Just as impressive in the song as the sounds offered, is the way sometimes the keys seem to lead the way, in other moments the guitar of Giuseppe Cantoli do or the vocals of Tiberio potently backed by those of Ioannone. The reality is that everything is equal yet the ebb and flow of the song, its rich crescendos provides a deceptive and very pleasing drama which consumes attention.

If you have yet to enjoy a Matinée performance, Empty is the perfect moment and adventure to spend your ticket on.

Empty is released April 29th via Neon Tetra Records.

https://www.facebook.com/thematineeband

Pete RingMaster 25/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Ciconia – Winterize

Ciconia_RingMasterReview

One complete movement or song split into ten standalone chapters, Winterize is one riveting adventure for ears and imagination. The new encounter from Spanish instrumentalists Ciconia, the concept album is a bold and fascinating merger of progressive rock and metal with post rock attributes aligned to a whole array of other flavours and styles from stoner to folkish enterprise. Winterize is quite superb, a mesmeric and invigorating incitement leaving pleasure and spirit eagerly aroused.

Hailing from Valladolid and drawing on inspirations from the likes of Opeth, Anathema, Distance Calling, Toundra, Mogwai, Liquid Tension Experiment, and Porcupine Tree, the 2013 formed Ciconia soon grabbed attention with debut album The Moon Sessions the following year. Its impressive body drew the band to the attention of the Independent Music Awards in Spain last year, that recognition backed by The “Z” Sessions EP, which featured a trio of tracks from the album re-mastered and remixed by Roy Z and was unveiled as the band hungrily took their live presence around Europe; the likes of France, Italy, Germany, Holland, Belgium, Slovakia, Romania, and Hungary taken in as well as extensive shows across the band’s homeland.

Now it is Winterize set to awaken new spotlights; an aim easy to see succeeding such the beauty and impressive melodic character of the album alone. The trio of bassist Jorge Fraguas, guitarist Javier Altonaga, and drummer Aleix Zoreda open the album and creative narrative up with Snowfields. From wintery winds and a solitude suggesting ambience, a single melody flickers into life and begins seducing ears and imagination. Like a flame in the cold air, it dances on the senses, painting provocative imagery in thoughts before the band cast an alluring mix of classical and Spanish like guitar. With the theme of the release from artwork to aural suggestion, expectations were that the album would provide cold and imposing soundscapes to ponder. The pure warmth and elegance revealed by track and album throughout was not predicted but swiftly devoured as it added to the inventive palette presenting the imagination with plenty to work with.

cover_RingMasterReviewThe gentle flight of the first track is replaced with the busy and bullish tenacity and energy of Eloina´s Inn. Strands of varied metal and heavy rock enterprise entangle as they descend feverishly on the senses, the track like a celebration and boisterous oasis out of the starker air of surrounding creative scenery. Rhythms are virulently dynamic and guitars a blaze of flirtatious and descriptive adventure whilst the skills of the individual members are as open and gripping as their combined endeavour.

There is no way words can present all that is going on in songs and album or of the diverse flavours lured into each dramatic piece of composing and invention but as the volatile soar of Limbus and the snarling confrontation of Scarsman proves, Ciconia create music which does not need to offer or receive any hints or clues to help the listener invest in their own adventures.  The first of the two takes thoughts through spatial hues whereas its successor creates a flesh marked protagonist in another mentally sculpted exploit which you would might be wary of yet reassured of their involvement.

As each track passes it offers a theatre of sound and rousing ingenuity; the epic serenade of The Forgotten casting a melancholic embrace and tempestuous fire of attitude and emotional turmoil all in one whilst A wolf never comes alone is as predatory as it is anthemically irresistible. A tempest of ear lashing beats and carnivorous riffs at its core, the piece is also a maze of classic rock acidity amidst antagonistic turbulence and quite thrilling. Its darker moonlit secrets and dangers midway only add to the bewitching drama of a song which leaves ears and emotions alive and ready to be ignited further by the outstanding Reel of Trevinca. Spanish folk rock meets Celtic spicery, the song has a great essence of Horslips about it at times as it whips up a jig and romp to get physically involved in.

The very brief melodic stroll of Forestwalk beside the crystal beauty of running water leads thoughts into the classical, almost vaudevillian exploits of Fiadeiro. Extreme metal textures collude with the radiance of classically spun melodies, further growling textures emerging with each twist of the song’s adventure and the sonic enterprise which colours the scene painting imagination shaping it.

The album is completed by the sixteen minute plus Towards the Valley, an emprise of craft and unpredictable incitement that seamlessly and beautifully moves though peaceful scenery into shadow drenched and in turn danger spawning challenges. Continuing to revolve and evolve through various shades of each across its long but seemingly quick in the ear such the eventful nature of its passage, the track is a striking end to a sensational release.

With Winterize, Ciconia have pushed themselves to the fore of instrumental and progressive rock; more importantly though they have given ears and the imagination one truly exciting and irresistible collection of aural pigments to go conjure with and inevitable richly enjoy.

Winterize is out now @ https://ciconia.bandcamp.com/ and http://www.ciconia.bigcartel.com/

https://www.facebook.com/ciconia666   https://twitter.com/ciconiaband

Pete Ringmaster 19/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Three Days From Retirement – If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall

Pic - Roisin Smith

Pic – Roisin Smith

Released last November, If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall, the latest EP from Scottish post rock band Three Days From Retirement (3DFR) is seemingly and deservedly getting a fresh push to spark new attention. The four-track EP is the result of a busy 2015 which also saw the Edinburgh hailing outfit eagerly embark on recording sessions, gigs, and a successful single. It is also evidence of the reason why the band’s cinematic post rock explorations are beginning to create a stir.

Formed in 2013, 3DFR take inspiration from the likes of Mogwai and Explosions in the Sky into their persistently evolving sound and invention. The following year featured the release of the band’s self-titled debut EP which eventually led to a link up with Infinite Hive Music and the unveiling of first single What Is Dead May Never Die last year. It was swiftly followed by the well-received If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall, which as suggested seems to be being given a new push to kick start another potent year for the quartet of Matty McGhie, David Henderson, Joe Warnock, and Matthew Floody.

Produced, mixed and mastered by Tony Doogan, the EP opens with Avalanche Error which instantly and gently lures ears and imagination into a melancholic yet inviting soundscape. Guitars and keys align like a meeting of planetary bodies to immerse the slow but ripe rhythmic canvas with melodic and suggestive caresses. A fine but expressive mix of cold laced shadows and an emotive colouring of sonic tempting only add to the restrained yet kaleidoscopic nature of the song and its tapestry of sound, a weave which grows a sense of volatility over time. Like an aural aurora borealis erupting with bolder and thicker drama as textures and intensity expand, the track is a poetic and magnetic start to the release.

art_RingMasterReviewIn contrast to the more earthbound feel of its predecessor, Shatner’s Rhapsody shares a spatial ambience with ears and thoughts next. Similarly it has elegance and intimate charm to its character whilst it’s blending of textures and emotional shades this time explores a more celestial atmosphere. Subsequently revealing an imposingly dark and weighty drama, the track transfixes before By the Power of Grayskull offers a more comfortable and romantic flight for the listener to discover, immerse in, and interpret. From virtually the song’s first touch, the funky tone of the bass provides a lure for the body, backed by the magnetic shuffle of beats, whilst the melodic mystique and shoegaze scented air and nature of guitars has ears and mind enthralled.

Spooky Action Across Distance brings the release to a haunting close; vocal reflection adding to the theatre of sound and imagination which is nothing less than a compelling persuasion. Though maybe not impacting as commandingly on personal tastes and emotions as the tracks before it, the track leaves thoughts eagerly busy and pleasure full whilst revealing another side to the band’s invention. The fact the emotive vocal/sonic union reminds of the Scars track Your Attention Please, does it no harm either.

Three Days From Retirement is beginning to command attention with many reasons why contained within the highly enjoyable If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall; a release as suggested deserving of another wave of attention from media and fresh listeners alike, especially fans of bands such as The Cure, Mogwai, Russian Circles, and Sigur Ros.

The If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall EP is out now via Infinite Hive Music at https://3daysfromretirement.bandcamp.com/album/if-we-keep-walking-eventually-well-fall-off and most online stores.

Upcoming live dates:

Friday March 18th 2016, Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh

Sunday March 20th 2016, Nice ‘n Sleazy, Glasgow

Friday April 22nd 2016, Banshee Labyrinth, Edinburgh

Tuesday May 10th 2016, Audio, Glasgow

https://www.facebook.com/THREEDAYSFROMRETIREMENT   https://twitter.com/3dfruk

Pete RingMaster 14/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Gaa Gaas – Close Your Eyes

art gaa gaas_RingMasterReview

It has been a long time in the waiting and an increasingly anticipated moment; that being the time when something new from The Gaa Gaas would step forward to infest ears. That occasion is now with the release of new single Close Your Eyes, an irresistible taster of the new evolution and adventure in the UK band’s exploration of sound. Showing a rich vein in flavour and sonic variety without losing the hypnotic insistence of their earlier successes, the track is simply going to have old fans drooling and a host of new followers entangled.

Formed after a garage punk night event at a venue in St Helier on Jersey in the Channel Islands, by vocalist/guitarist Gavin Tate, The Gaa Gaas spent their first two years honing their sound and becoming a potent live proposition on the island, before relocating in 2005 to Brighton, then later London from where they switch between the two. Their hunger to play live took the then trio, across the UK and Europe with shows and tours, a success in turn building an eager fan base stretching outside Britain as far as France, Italy, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, and Sweden. The following years saw the release of two EPs to strong success and the embracing by internet radio shows and stations alone, of songs like the 2010 James Aparicio (Nick Cave, Mogwai) produced and Robert Harder (Brian Eno, The Slits) mixed and mastered debut single Voltaire and the equally devoured Hypnoti(z)ed.

As suggested, recent times have been a quieter affair with the band though work on their first album has been an on-going adventure. Now with an inescapable new maturity to their sound and bold expansion to its tapestry, the foursome of Tate, keyboardist Peter Hass, bassist Jamey Exton, and drummer Stewart Brown, have a new piece of virulent temptation ready to entice and thrill. Like a gift placed in the hand by a loved one making that certain request to prolong the surprise, Close Your Eyes had an air of excitement to it even before a note is heard, something all their fans will no doubt equally feel.

The Ali Gavan (former member of The Electric Soft Parade) produced song strokes the ears with a single raw caress of guitar first, its resonance remaining as a sonic mist brews up around it. It is a swift and firm coaxing which soon parts from the inside, opening the way for the eager stroll of the song to bound through. With a punkish rockabilly like swagger to its rhythms and hooks, the track instantly has ears gripped; only strengthening its hold as Exton’s bass flirts with, Brown’s beats jabs, and the sonic web the band is renowned for envelops the senses. With Tate’s vocals potently leading the lure, a new melodic infectiousness reveals its growth within the band’s sound. It is a tempering to the caustic nagging potency the band has always shared but another compelling hue only adding depth and might to the great post punk/noise pop catchiness which coats the swing of the proposal.

Like a mix of The Horrors, Wire, The Adverts, and The Three Johns, yet openly individual to The Gaa Gaas, Close Your Eyes worms under the skin and into the psyche in no time. As suggested, it has the prime recognisable sound of The Gaa Gaas at its heart but feels like the key to a whole new adventure which the band has obviously been working on across that recent calmer period in their emergence.

Backing the single is the siren-esque Indian Giver. Originally composed as an instrumental, the track has become an even richer provocative embrace of the senses since Tate’s dissonance scented harmonic vocals have merged with the song’s sonic imagination and early Cure/Artery like atmospherics. The result another dramatic incitement of the psyche through seductive tempting and provocative majesty.

With both tracks taking the listener into unique and individual landscapes of suggestiveness , all that is left to say is roll on their new album set for later this year and roll on the big bold spotlights surely set to crowd in on The Gaa Gaas if the single is the sign of glories to come.

Close Your Eyes is released February 29th via Movement-2-Records @ https://thegaagaas.bandcamp.com/album/close-your-eyes

For more info check out https://www.facebook.com/TheGaaGaas and to hear more of the band’s new songs head over to https://www.facebook.com/events/1034320063257409/1047980888557993/ at 23:00 GMT also on the 29th February.

https://twitter.com/The_Gaa_Gaas

Pete RingMaster 29/02/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

The Minerals – Ball Of String

art_RingMaster Review

As crystalline as the band’s name might suggest, The Minerals’ sound is a kaleidoscope of warm and organic textures woven into a hazy seduction of melodic drama. It may only be two songs, but their new single Ball Of String is fascinating evidence of the fact, and further proof that the magnetically emerging Welsh band is one exciting prospect.

Based in the South Wales Valleys and formed in 2014, The Minerals is the creative union of Colenso Jones and Jodie Gibson. Drawing on inspirations found in the a range of artists from The Vaselines and Leadbelly to Mogwai and Nick Drake, the duo quickly bred their own tantalising sound from a blend simplified as folk and country rock meets electronic and psychedelic exploration. Past experiences have seen the pair being involved in punk bands throughout their teens and early twenties which too in DIY attitude alone simply adds to the invention of The Minerals.

The winter of 2014 saw a collection of songs written by the band in the remote hills of Southern France, songs which were to become their self-titled debut album which was released last June through Staylittle Music. Ball Of String and its companion on the single, Lo-Fi are taken from the eight track full-length and as potent a lure into that full body of songs as you could wish for.

Ball Of String takes little time to grab attention as guitar strums and bass seduction collude to lure ears into the impending embrace of vocal repetition. Lyrically the song is a rotation of a couple of lines, but such their delivery and simple but pungent make-up, the listener is drawn into full involvement. Around them the initially calm but lively climate of sound becomes not exactly volatile but more robustly shadow filled as if building to a major outbreak of intensity. It never goes that far but the drama created is as irresistible as the sounds woven into its insatiable virulence.

The track is glorious, a galvanic whipping up of the passions masterfully backed by Lo-Fi. Once again, a guitar caresses ears initially as a flirtatious bassline mixes with firmer beats. This time around Gibson takes the vocal lead, though both songs are a splendid union of hers and Jones’ potent tones. Musically a stronger psychedelic air lines each suggestive melody from guitar and keys as well as coats the floating harmonies which entice with siren-esque beauty.

Like a mix of Jingo and Jess & The Ancient Ones in many ways, especially the second, both songs leave ears in rapture and a need to hear more as ripe as the enterprise inspiring that greed.

Ball Of String is released February 26th via Staylittle Music @ http://themineralsband.bandcamp.com/album/ball-of-string

Upcoming Live Dates:

April 15th – The Moon Club, Cardiff (supporting Rusty Shackle)

April 16th – Snails Deli, Rhiwbina, Cardiff

https://www.facebook.com/themineralsband   https://twitter.com/themineralsband

Pete RingMaster 25/02/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

The Lazlo Device – Looking Glass

lazlo device art_RingMaster ReviewIt is fair to say that UK quartet The Lazlo Device, have laid down an inescapably immersive adventure with new single Looking Glass to offer a fascinating invitation and teaser to their upcoming debut album. A majestic serenade of sultry melodies and elegant charm bound in an evocative ambience, the song glides through ears and into the imagination. It is in a way aurally erotic such its suggestiveness yet equally has a rousing prowess of energy and subtle crescendos to seduce the body’s instincts and leave a quickly keen appetite lustfully greedy by its close.

The band is a quartet from London which formed towards the rear of 2010. Drawing on inspirations from the likes of Mogwai, Wild Beasts, Grizzly Bear, Stateless, Four Tet, The Beta Band, and Elbow, the foursome of bassist/vocalist Dan Murdoch, guitarists/keyboardists Mark Litobarski and Ross Saunders, and drummer Leo Fenn soon began earning a growing reputation for “their unique blend of delicate soundscapes, thumping riffs and epic climaxes.” It is a quality openly evident in their latest single, it impressively building upon the invention and success which fuelled the band’s 2014 released trio of EPs, Unlucky 13, Gunslinger, and Lazlodia (Tokyo High St EP).

Taken from impending full-length Duelism, the swiftly seductive Looking Glass first caresses ears with a sombre yet welcoming bass. Within a few breaths more keys and guitar strings within floating harmonies lay poetic fingers upon the senses and imagination, they orchestrated by the engaging vocal charm of Murdoch. The song’s atmosphere is warm whilst its scenery is a mellow yet flirtatious festivity involving jazzy textures and evocative melodies amongst many more spices which simply romances ears.

There is an underlying catchiness to the proposition too, one lurking in the magnetic rhythms and the swing of the vocals. It is an infectiousness which builds to controlled but anthemic expulsions that only reinforce the track’s grip on the listener before allowing them to fall back into the seductive arms of the Muse scented encounter. A smooch on the senses, Looking Glass is further enhanced by the irresistible flames of guest and alto saxophonist Dennis McDonagh, they another hue to a lingering treat which by its end has incited the beginning of impatience for the album ahead.

There is/was a Japanese band called Tokyo Chaos City which created a similar alchemy of emotion flooded ambiences around fiercely provocative textures and sonic experiences, they the only real references we can offer to the uniqueness of The Lazlo Device sound. Expectations are that Duelism will follow-up and push on the beauty and invention of Looking Glass whilst The Lazlo Device will go on to be a potent part of the rock landscape at home and most likely further afield.

Looking Glass is out now @ https://thelazlodevice.bandcamp.com/ with Duelism to be released 11th March with its launch show on March 12th at the Camden Barfly.

https://www.facebook.com/thelazlodevice  http://www.thelazlodevice.com   https://twitter.com/THELAZLODEVICE

Pete RingMaster 17/02/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Victories at Sea – Everything Forever

VAS_RingMaster Review

Everything about Everything Forever is noir hued; even its melodic glows and emotive beauty is wrapped in some form of portentous shadowing resulting in something highly mesmeric and provocative. The encounter is the debut album from UK band Victories at Sea, a Birmingham trio already no strangers to an excited buzz and attention around them and their sound, with plenty more sure to surface as Everything Forever seduces over time.

Musically Victories at Sea draw on inspirations ranging from the likes of Mogwai and Factory Floor to Slowdive and The Chameleons, and it is the latter in a fusion with Editors, Felt, and The Slow Readers Club which emerged in personal thoughts as a hint to the flame and suggestiveness of the band’s new release. Written over two years within an abandoned steel works in Digbeth and recorded in the damp basement of an old whistle factory, Everything Forever builds on the character of the bands’ previous EP In Memory Of. That was a release leading to keen support by the likes of NME, The Guardian, Clash Magazine, and XFM’s John Kennedy, something already being echoed in the wake of the new album’s varied and fascinating persuasion.

Artwork_RingMaster Review   Released via Static Caravan Recordings, Everything Forever opens up with Bloom, an apt title as release and sound does openly grow and blossom within the song. Synths offer the initial hug of coaxing, their mix of intense and emotive colours melancholic yet lively and increasingly inviting as they lead ears and appetite into a catchy stroll bound in sonic guitar lures. The mellow vocals only add to the warmth within a more oppressive climate as an eighties hue reminding of bands like Felt and also The Wild Swans adds to the fascinating and swiftly gripping success of the impressive opener.

The rich start continues with Florentine and there is barely a slither of difference to the sheer majesty of the first two tracks; the second, with more of that familiar nostalgic air, flirting from within another flavoursome shuffle of floating keys, harmonic vocals, and spicily melodic enterprise courted by the darker swing of the rhythms. Inescapably infectious, the track shares its attributes with the following Up, it too bridging eras of synth rock and post punk whilst bringing a big smile of infectiousness aired in a whisper of Duran Duran meets Tones On Tail. Keys and guitar entangle throughout, spinning a kaleidoscopic web of sound with minimalistic strands thick in temptation and resourceful imagination. Already the first three songs are rivalling for best track honours and to be honest they continue to chain the choice amongst themselves though many songs attempt to rival them.

The smooth celestial swing of On Your Own is one, its charming canter of sound and vocals a pulsating and contagious radiance on ears and imagination whilst DMC finds the band slip into something far more dystopian in air and suggestion. Its dark heavy climate embraces a blend of cool and warm keys, whilst its industrial spawned instrumental heart alone echoes as much the dark animus the world is in and which inspires some of the band’s lyrical exploration, as any vocalised tracks within Everything Forever.

Poles Apart is initially a low key but still boisterous affair compared to earlier tracks, vocals against skittish percussive tenacity creating a lively canvas from where keys and especially the spicy tonic of the guitars breed emotive imagination and subsequently a growing intensity which soon roars like a fire. It is compelling stuff which continues in the slightly starker but no less riveting seduction of Swim, a slice of again eighties inspired post punk that ignites the imagination as swiftly as hips and emotions. As suggested already, the Victories at Sea sound delves into the deepest shadows and darkest corners of worldly reflections and emotional intimacy yet boy is it easy to dance to, band and music built to get bodies fully involved and heading to the dance-floor.

Future Gold just epitomises that intent and success, its golden sunspot of melodic and harmonic prowess a sultry glow on another landscape crafted to tempt hips and an instinctive motion of the body. Emotionally driven by hope matched by an alluring radiance of sound, the song as so many quickly gets under the skin, leaving a welcome imprint that draws attention back again and again.

The thumping bait and virulence of Into the Fire provides one more rousing waltz of imagination and addictiveness next before album closer Sirens uncages its haunting atmospheric soundscape. The breath and design of the final song lives up to its title with ease, intimidating air and emotionally desolate scenery colluding in a post rock tinged exploration of physical dissonance; it all playing like a reflection of the same invasive discordance now gripping socially and globally. The track is darkly captivating, revealing even richer aspects of the Victories at Sea invention whilst taking the listener to yet another new place within Everything Forever.

It is easy to see why Victories at Sea are a favourite proposition for a great many right now and will be for many, many more now their album, a release not to miss out on, is working its temptation.

Everything Forever is out now via Static Caravan Recordings digitally and on vinyl/CD @ http://victoriesatsea.bigcartel.com/product/everything-forever

http://www.victoriesatsea.co.uk  https://twitter.com/victoriesatsea  https://www.facebook.com/Victories-at-Sea-272819659418258/

Pete RingMaster 16/11/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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