Monster Truck – Sittin’ Heavy

pic by Brooks Reynolds

pic by Brooks Reynolds

Yet again Monster Truck lives up to the suggested weightiness of their name with their sound in new album Sittin’ Heavy. The eleven track encounter is a rousing rock ‘n’ roll roar embracing a landscape of bold styles and flavours. It is an adventure the Canadian band’s fans have become accustomed to and helped lead their Juno Award nominated debut album Furiosity to rich acclaim and hordes of new appetites two years or so back. Sittin’ Heavy carries on the muscular work of its predecessor, unleashing broad and robust rock ‘n’ roll you can only give full attention to.

The Hamilton, Ontario hailing Monster Truck quickly began stirring up local attention and support when emerging in 2009, backing it up with the release of their Gus Van Go and Werner F (The Stills, Priestess, Hollerado) produced self-titled EP the following year. The band linked up with producer Eric Ratz (Billy Talent, Cancer Bats, Three Days Grace) for its successor, The Brown EP in 2011, with surrounding singles pushing the band into the Top 10 on Canadian Rock radio. That initial live success has only accelerated and grown across the years too; tours across North America and Canada as well as supporting shows and festival appearances seeing the quartet sharing stages with the likes of Slash, Deep Purple, Guns N’ Roses, The Sheepdogs, Alice in Chains, ZZ Top, Buckcherry, Rival Sons and many more.

Furiosity put Monster Truck on bigger heavy rock/metal maps with its release in 2013, something the again Ratz recorded/co-produced Sittin’ Heavy will surely stir up and exploit further. Their first offering since signing with Mascot Records, the album charges at and through ears with opener Why Are You Not Rocking. Jabbing beats instantly grip attention before being quickly joined by fiery grooves around hungry riffs. Hitting its rousing stroll in moments, the track is a contagious stomp with the lead vocals of bassist Jon Harvey growling and enticing from within the busy web of Jeremy Widerman’s grooves and the seriously coaxing organ lures of Brandon Bliss. With drummer Steve Kiely inciting further involvement through his rapier like swings, band and song has hips, appetite, and energies ablaze with ease.

art_RingMasterReviewSittin’ Heavy is off to a mighty start which continues as Don’t Tell Me How To Live steps up next; its blues spiced grooves and tenaciously pressing riffs offering potent bait as they crowd the robustly snarling tones of Harvey. The song’s air is almost woozy with the melodic liquor fuelling the richly enticing grooving, their flirtation the lead into the suggestiveness of Widerman’s sonic endeavour and imagination. As the first, the track is a magnetic affair pleasing and simultaneously setting up the emotions and appetite for the even thicker weave of spicy textures and sultry invention that is She’s A Witch. As its predecessor, the song has a groove built net which quickly envelops ears as hips and feet are tempted and urged by the funk infused hooks and flighty flames of blues resourcefulness.

A southern seeded celebration is laid out by For The People next, its character and sound a familiar persuasion yet distinctly sculpted with Monster Truck invention and passion whilst Black Forest allows a rest for the body and inspiration for the imagination with its mellow yet still slightly tempestuous air and reflection. As with the last song, there is a sixties/seventies scented essence to the song; hues which align to a modern heartfelt blues seducing before having to make way for the wonderful discord twisted introduction of Another Man’s Shoes and subsequently its muscularly imposing and evocative body. The track is rock ‘n’ roll at its feverish yet controlled best, another skilful tapestry of textures and energies which Monster Truck, in this album alone, show themselves so accomplished at weaving.

From one pinnacle to another as Things Gets Better strides in with a keys sparked swagger that infests every aspect of the song. There is no escaping the unrelentingly persuasive and anthemic prowess of a song which never breaks into a riot of energy and sound but has the senses and spirit as aroused as if it had. The track also adds more of the flavoursome variety that makes up the album. As great as it is though, it and every song making up Sittin’ Heavy, gets outshone by the sensational incitement of The Enforcer. Straight from the big swinging rhythms which bound in under the control of Kiely, submission to its fiery charm is inevitable and even more assured as the soulful fire of sound and harmonies unite to seduce and stir the spirit. Grooves are almost toxic such their winy intoxication whilst the vocals of Harvey, backed by the rest of the band, simply provide virulent bait. Add biting riffs, piecing hooks, and more creative swing led by the bass revelry of Harvey, and you have one of the most incendiary tracks you are likely to hear this year.

To The Flame takes ears into a tantalising mix of sludge and stoner-esque adventure next. The track almost crawls over the senses whilst leaving a glaze of volcanic seduction, led by Widerman’s sonic lattice and the smothering allure of Bliss’ keys. Compelling the listener into full involvement, the track’s sweltering landscape adds another peak to the lofty range of the album, its success matched and surpassed by the devilishly creative and expressive throes of New Soul. The song has all the hectic and inflamed elements that makes the Monster Truck sound; elements which collude with individual craft and anthemic mastery for lusty rock ‘n’ roll to get hot and sweaty to.

Completed by the gentle, in relation to other songs, emotive embrace of Enjoy The Time, the irresistible Sittin’ Heavy is a band revelling in the varied strains of rock ‘n’ roll and their imagination in uniting them with their own invention. That in turn has ears and emotions similarly making feverish merry to the results.

Sittin’ Heavy is out now via Mascot Records, available digitally as well as on CD and Vinyl (which includes bonus track Midnight) across most online stores.

http://www.ilovemonstertruck.com/   https://www.facebook.com/ilovemonstertruck   https://twitter.com/monster_truck

Pete RingMaster 07/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Graveltones – Love Lies Dying

The Graveltones _Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

If the Devil had his own band it would definitely be The Graveltones, though we suspect the horned one has his dark seduction running through the band’s new hellacious slab of dark rock ‘n’ roll posing as new album Love Lies Dying anyway. The thirteen track hex on ears and passions is the most virulent and incendiary roar of devilish blues rock and dirt clad rock you are likely to hear this, last, or next year, a satanic bargain promising not its but your soul to the dark side.

In a time of some exceptional rock duos, The Graveltones stand boldly to the fore thanks to the creative and musical union of the Australian bred, UK based pair of vocalist/guitarist Jimmy O. and drummer Mikey Sorbello. The band emerged in late 2011, a subsequent adventure resulting from their meeting in London’s Tin Pan Alley and a mutual love of artists as diverse as Captain Beefheart, Howlin Wolf, John Lee Hooker and Queen Of The Stone Age. 2013 debut album Don’t Wait Down stirred up greedy attention and a new wave of lustful fans for their fiery and unique sound whilst live the band was soon sharing tours and stages with the likes of Rival Sons, The Temperance Movement, Boss Hoss, Monster Truck, and Cadillac Three, as well as playing a seriously successful slot at that year’s Download. As impressive as the album was, it was just the first step to the majestic rock alchemy that is Love Lies Dying, an encounter revealing the band and its sound as the inescapable real deal.

The devilment opens with World On A String, a track emerging with a heavy stride of rhythms and a thick blues soaking of riffs. From the first breath it also has a punk belligerence to its character, an attitude which fuels vocals and adds edge to the wine of grooves igniting its anthemic canvas. Like Rocket From The Crypt meets The Black Keys at a salacious stomp hosted by US duo In The Whale, a description which closest fits the whole of Love Lies Dying, the track is pure addictive rock ‘n’ roll setting the whole intoxicating riot off in contagious style.

love-lies-dying_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review   The invigorating revelry continues just as masterfully in the following Fancy Things, its rhythmic bones bordering on predatory as they bounce on the senses as the guitar sprays flames of melodic spicing. With vocals emulating both aspects with a mix of both intimidating rapacity and infectious temptation, the song brews up an irrepressible stomp around the tangiest of grooves; a template emulated in This Love Is Gonna Break, though the song with colourful keys provided by Carl Hudson walks a more sixties garage rock kind of landscape. It is just as much punk and rock pop too, its cauldron of merciless temptation and a chorus even the dead would be unable to refuse, simply irresistible.

Things take on a slightly more shadowy turn with Running To You next, its scuzzy blues hues and catchy rhythmic bait something close to a stalking of ears, though with a mischief in those same beats and the great vocal dynamics, the song is as vivaciously light as it is menacingly toned. Once more imagination and appetite are inflamed, and four songs in it is fair to say that lustful greed is in the equation too, all swiftly encouraged and fed further by both Never Gonna Let You Go and Can’t Tell A Man. The first of the two is the band’s current single and a little fuzz pit of riffs and searing grooves badgered by another vital rhythmic trap. The song is stirring up major attention for the band and album right now and easy to see why as its creative agitation and frenetic enterprise is just punk ’n’ roll slavery. It pounds the senses as it embroils thoughts and emotions in inventive mayhem, leaving the listener exhausted and alive. Its successor is more of a smoulder in comparison; its fiery blues melodies bourbon running around jabbing beats and the ever expressive and increasingly magnetic tones of Jimmy. It is a barroom croon, sweat and liquor fumes as pungent as the emotive hues of voice and guitar, and just addictive.

In The Throes is of a similar proposal to the previous song, but less dirty and more restrained as it flirts with ears through acidic grooves and rebellious beats. Both songs bring strong variety to the album too, another good essence within Love Lies Dying, and indeed within this track alone things are a perpetual evolution as it gets heavier and darker before making way for the outstanding I’m A Ghost. Like The Stones reincarnated as Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers, the track is a maze of hypnotic beats and vocal incitement but flush with delicious surf punk imagination and garage rock resourcefulness. The song is exceptional, one of numerous pinnacles within the album but another which is sure fire manna for new ears as an introduction to release and band.

Surf seduction reeks in the haunting croon of Back To You too, the mesmeric dark balladry carrying a Nick Cave like hue to its melancholic embrace whilst Kiss And Fuck Off is psychotic brilliance shaped as a psyche/noise rock predation. Ripe with deranged imagination and masterful discordance, not forgetting rhythmic disturbance, the song forcibly hits the sweet spot which Come And Find Me stirs up even more with its aggressive and commanding rumble. Riffs snarl with alluring causticity whilst beats with a more controlled purpose prowl fuzzy air, contrasting elements uniting perfectly as the song twists and turns through varied creative scenery, including a passage of QOTSA like grooving.

Upcoming single Big Money steps forward next, slowly crawling over ears and imagination with boozy melodic vines with vocals from Jimmy to match. The relaxed percussive courting of Mikey is just as enticing, becoming punchier when the song erupts in a furnace of intensity and impassioned energy from time to time. It is not maybe the most obvious of single, compared to others within the album, but its smoulder is intensive and persuasion a lingering potency so that the song joins the major peaks of Love Lies Dying.

Together Again brings everything to a close, its low key melancholic finale a blues rock hug to drift off with until the urge to start the album all over again, which to be honest is a matter of seconds. Someone elsewhere said that The Graveltones have come of age with Love Lies Dying and you can only agree as the album song by song establishes itself as one of the thrilling irresistible proposals of 2015. There is still the feeling though that this, like its predecessor, is only a step towards even greater glories, an excitement as powerful as that bred by the album itself.

Love Lies Dying and latest single Never Gonna Let You Go are out now via Lagoon Dog Records @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/love-lies-dying/id978331780. New single Big Money will be released in July.

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

RingMaster 11/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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We Hunt Buffalo – Blood From A Stone EP

     whb_live

     Clad in a thick rich blanket of enticing fuzz, the quartet of stoner sculpted tracks making up the Blood From A Stone EP provide one of the most refreshing and invigorating treats from the genre in recent months. The new release of Canadian rockers We Hunt Buffalo, it is a masterful tempest of intensively persuasive riffs and commanding rhythms around melodic imagination, the result a release which captivates and fires up the emotions.

     The Vancouver trio of vocalist/guitarist Ryan Forsythe, vocalist/bassist Brendan Simpson, and drummer Brandon Carter, soon set tongues wagging and appetites awakened for their compelling sound with the release of a first EP in 2010. Linking up with Tanis Gibbons at The Hive recording studio in Burnaby BC the following year, the band recorded their self-titled debut album, the release re-working tracks from the previous EP and new slices of psychedelically touched stoner spawned rock ‘n’ roll. 2012 saw the band place in the top three, out of 400 entries, in the 99.3 The Fox annual SEEDS competition which led them to supporting Monster Truck at Vancouver’s The Commodore Ballroom, a stage which subsequently saw the band returning often to sharing space with the likes of Chevelle, Matt Mays, Danko Jones and Steel Panther over time. Released at the tail of last year, Blood From A Stone reinforces and stretches the band’s stature and potency with four tsunamis of creative power and hungry riffery, the release a wake-up call for a still sleeping world to the band’s tremendous potential and presence.

      We Hunt Buffalo opens up the EP with its title track, a song which from a restrained sonic mesh of guitar acidity canters into an coverinstant attention grabbing proposition, fuzz cloaked riffs and crisp rhythms leading the imagination into an evolving and enveloping stoner grooved almost doom based embrace. The vocals are as impressive and appealing as the sound, their expressive and earnest clean pleas openly magnetic within the squalling incendiary smog of fuzz and sonic invention. Essences of Black Tusk come to mind briefly during the excellent track’s persuasion but with its dirty climate and roughened touch the adventure creates an evocation of sound purely down to the Canadians.

    The bouncing yet heavy weight opener is followed by an equally energetic suasion in Cobwebs. A blues soaked flame of guitar veins the merger of military seeded drum beats and the tempestuous sonic scuzziness drifting across and drenching every note. Vocally the delivery takes a slower mesmeric radiance, Forsythe and Simpson blending for a resourceful and compelling mix within the fiery breath of the song. There is a Palms essence to the track, something which reappears again later in the EP but again an essence which is merely a radiant spice in a distinctive and unique recipe. You admittedly would not say song or EP is setting new avenues for stoner and heavy weighted rock but certainly it offers something strikingly fresh and individual to We Hunt Buffalo.

     Hometown taps a stronger vein of southern blues in its flame of guitar, the sultriness of its charm evolving into shards of heat and invention through the slowly strolling reflection of stoner fire and emotive ambience. We mentioned Palms earlier but maybe more so a Deftones embrace wraps this track through the atmospheric and evocative intensity dripping from every chord and syllable of the excellent track. It is a hypnotic incitement with punch and inventive endeavour to contrast with and add to the immersive journey into the depths of the song, excellently crafted twists and imaginative nuances working away at the senses on route.

     The triplets of outstanding tracks become four with the closing Telepathic Eyes, an arguably cleaner faced meeting though also not adverse to a healthy dose of fuzz permeated enticement. It is another slow and smouldering piece of melodic rock with blooming stoner flavouring, a fire of sound and temptation which retains the release on the same impressive plateau it started on and held. Blood From A Stone is one of those stoner cast treats you hanker for time and time again, and We Hunt Buffalo a band the world will be eagerly aware of sooner rather than later on the evidence of this.

http://www.wehuntbuffalo.com

http://wehuntbuffalo.bandcamp.com/album/blood-from-a-stone

9/10

RingMaster 12/02/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

 

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