Model Depose – Damage Control

Bred from the seeds of eighties post punk and synth pop, the Model Depose sound has only nurtured and forged its own identity since the Netherland band’s first release back in 2013 and within new album, Damage Control, has cast its richest individuality and temptation yet.

The Groningen hailing outfit openly bear their inspirations on their creative sleeves with maybe a Depeche Mode influence the strongest yet they have increasingly been woven into the commanding imagination of the band. Damage Control though is most unique offering from the quartet yet. Certainly across its tapestry of flavours embracing dark and new wave, indie pop and post rock among many to that post punk/electro pop core certain shadow wrapped moments and electronic breaths sparked thoughts of the likes of Marc Almond, Editors, Modern English, Dead Register and the original Human League alongside Dave Gahan and co, yet every track rose to share its own rare presence of familiarity and uniqueness.

Damage Control opens up with Wights and quickly had attention secured as the rich vocals of Roeland van der Velde stepped forward within an electronic shimmering. An emotive lining to his tones are echoed in the synth shared melodies of Mariët Gast and the almost nagging jingle of Jobbe Holtes’ guitar, the song in no time an eager captivation. Their warm lures though are courted by dark shadows, bassist David Bos prowling their intimation as thicker and increasing drama marries every note and syllable. It is an enthralling almost haunting beginning to the album, its grip on the imagination already in place and only tightened thereon in.

Stranger follows and equally has melancholy for company as van der Velde again immediately impresses. There is a fire in the song’s dark belly though which without truly igniting gives it energy and intensity, the former ensnaring hips and the latter an emotive engagement. By its finale, its Depeche Mode-esque catchiness is in full swing yet without defusing its darkened breath.

The album’s title track follows and immediately had the body bouncing with its eager bold rhythms and the scything strikes of guitar behind again the rich invitation of vocals. The song is pure esurient contagion getting under the skin in no time and using body and spirit like a puppet as electronic and indie rock textures collude and roar in defiance. A definite favourite song contender it is quickly matched by the darkly lit virulence of Red Alert. There is a Muse like tint to the song, its evocative almost dissonant thoughts and breath united with instinctive rock ‘n’ roll catchiness which itself has something of She Wants Revenge to it.

Through the crepuscular but inflamed serenade of Blackstar and the light of magnetism that is Cold War, there was no loosening of the album’s hold on ear and pleasure. The second of the two features the guest vocals of Groningen-based singer/songwriter FENN and her duet with van der Velde is worth the admission fee alone while their successor, Drawing the Line, brings an electro rock incitement which again had body and imagination doing its contagious bidding. It is another which makes a firm claim for favourite album moment, the track sheer temptation from first to last second.

 #Dancelikenooneiswatching has an electro punk sneer to its synth pop calling, the track predominately a slice of rock dexterity smouldering with a host of other spices and quite addictive while the riveting Yesterday’s Gloom is a tenebrific croon with tempestuousness in its heart and intensity. Both tracks epitomise the diversity of sound within Damage Control but equally the unity of the Model Depose breath and craft to ear catching enterprise.

The album concludes with the pair of 03:00Am and bonus track Bombs Are Falling, the first an atmospherically evocative seduction within a sunless yet beguiling landscape and the second a gripping post-traumatic stress themed expression of power, intensity and magnetic craft.

Together they provide a potent end to a striking release, one which with its influences fits in with the eighties scene many of those inspirations come from but is firmly as fresh and adventurous as anything within the electronic /indie rock landscape Damage Control now lights up.

Damage Control is out now through Trisol Music Group across most stores.

http://www.modeldepose.com   https://www.facebook.com/modeldepose   https://www.instagram.com/modeldepose  https://www.darkmerch.com

Pete RingMaster 22/10/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Crooked Ghost – Colors Bleed

photo by Rome Widenhouse

If you look at the press release for new EP, Colors Bleed, it suggests the sounds within would make something appealing for the fans of bands such as The Smiths, Suede, The Cure, Muse, Siouxsie And The Banshees, Gun Club, and early R.E.M. With each a valid clue to the Crooked Ghost sound it is a list suggesting its thickly flavoured body but maybe not quite its distinctly fascinating and often consuming character.

Asheville, North Carolina hailing, Crooked Ghost has already made a potent impact in 2019 with their album Skeleton House, released this past February. Recorded with producer Edward Madill, Colors Bleed now sees the quintet cast tracks which are “bigger and brighter than those before” but within the shoegaze, post punk, and dream pop seeded tapestries there is no escaping the invasively intimate shadows and esurient often raw melancholy fuelling their hearts and imagination.

Latest single, Black Rainbow, opens up the release, its gentle melodic beginning an evocative coaxing. Soon it is building up into a creative crescendo, the lively rhythms of drummer Jon Wyatt uniting with the jangling prowess ringing from the guitars of Charles Reed and Ray Lark, with the latter’s similarly magnetic vocals swiftly adding to the catchy temptation. Already there is emotional weight and tempestuous to the track and its mental illness themed intimacy, the keys of Alex Cannon radiant smog within the textures as the bass of Chris Saldin brings firmer shape to its inherent shadows.

By the breath the song only intensifies its fears and emotional turbulence yet there is a melodic sun at its heart which just beguiled before Sinew In Red shared it’s even more fervid breath and conflict. Again there is an enveloping heat to sound and emotion at the core of the song, its dark embrace a fusion of enquiring warmth and invasive melancholy within the haunting bewitchment consuming ears and attention, it all enveloping like a kind of rapturous romance. As its predecessor, the track simply bewitched though again as with the first leaving a lingering touch built on doubt and hope in its wake.

The final pair of Golden Blue and Bright White Noise provided just as evocative explorations to keenly immerse in. The first rises from its crepuscular calm with melodic captivation wrapped in more strident sonic threads yet again there is instinctive warmth which seduces across both keys and guitars. Lark’s inimitable tones only add to the bracing emotion soaked soundscape, his voice and words crafted in open and candid reflection.

The closing song is in many ways the most intense and haunting track of all, its sorrow verging on claustrophobic and melancholy devouring  yet once more Crooked Ghost bring a glow and melodic captivation which lights its shadows alongside the listener’s thoughts and feelings.

Colors Bleed quickly proved a gripping release but became increasingly spellbinding as each fresh listen opened up more depth and temptation in its body and imagination.

Colors Bleed is out now: available@ https://crookedghost.bandcamp.com/album/colors-bleed

https://www.facebook.com/CrookedGhost   https://twitter.com/thecrookedghost

Pete RingMaster 05/11/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Maziac – Forged

When a release instantly and impressively smacks you in the face and proceeds to tease, taunt, and fascinate thereon in you know there is something rather special in the brewing. Forged is one such proposition, the new album from UK based outfit Maziac devouring ears and attention from its first breath and only continuing to captivate with its eclectic body through every passing second.

Formed in 2017, the London residing trio of guitarist/vocalist Tony Best, bassist/synth player Tim Stokes, and drummer Marc Vachon have already faced potent fan and critical praise through their first EP, the Justin Hill (SikTh) mixed and mastered Parallel unveiled in the May of 2018. Its success alongside the band’s rousing sound and live presence has led the band to share stages with the likes of The Ever Living, Epsilon, Derange, On Hollow Ground, and Winchester; it all adding to their growing reputation. All previous acclaim though should be quickly paled by that destined to be garnered by Forged, one of the year’s brightest gems so far.

Again recorded with Hill, Forged erupts with an immediate predacious hunger, opener Symptomatic a tempest sweeping in and consuming the senses. Rhythms bludgeon as riffs dismantle the senses, Best’s vocals just as urgent and rapacious as a cyclone of djent/technical and alternative metal/rock disgorges its rabid temptation. It is a starting introduction which only continued to incite and thrill as the song reveals its craft and prowess. As quickly and continually proven, Maziac have a sound which enjoyably proves very difficult to pin down with references to others but certainly within its ferocious sonic kaleidoscope essences resembling bands such as Fear Factory, Deftones, The Contortionist, Between the Buried and Me, and Spineshank swirl.

It is a stunning start keenly and powerfully matched by the following Escapism. Relatively restrained in comparison, the track still prowls with a definite predatory intent; its rich body wrapped in melodic wiring as alluring as they are cutting. Best’s vocals equally have a calmer harmonic edge in a delivery as varied as the sounds around it, the band’s alternative rock instincts a thick colour to the inventive metal of the song. It is hard not to think of the track as a beast, stalking and preying on willing ears tempted by sonic plumage of inventive temptation.

Cortisol teased an already eager appetite right away with the rhythmic rapping of Vachon, his beats taunting attention as the guitar brews up its subsequent eddy of bold enterprise and melodic flaming. The song’s progressive nature shapes its imagination; rock ‘n’ roll contagiousness fuelling the animated gait of unpredictability. There is a touch of Voyager to the track as too Muse but once again, it emerges solely Maziac before Prisoners saunters in with its swiftly beguiling lures. A whiff of The Kennedy Soundtrack shades its beginnings, a Muse-esque hue adding to the mix as the riveting track unfurls its intrepid enterprise and adventure to challenge for best track honours.

The melodic intimation of brief instrumental Vicissitudes had the imagination conjuring ready for the far more feral but composed dynamics of Again. Once more progressive and djent elements collude in its buoyant design, Stokes’ bass not for the first or last time a rousing snarl of incitement in the midst of skilled melodic and sonic endeavour. It is fair to say that as potent tracks are on first listen, each following play only reveals fresh depths and textures for greater rewards as no better proven than here.

Deceptive of its title, Allure instantly embroils ears in a pestilential cauldron of metal but soon relishes the band’s melodic dexterity and the almost poppy catchiness that breeds. It is a thunderous encounter teasing with glimpses of the peace at the eye of the storm, never giving in to predictability or anything less than compelling while closing track, Resolution, casts its own experiment in texture and tone to bring the album to a fine close. In certain moments almost primal in its climate and in others like a melodic sunspot, the song just enthralled as another aspect to the Maziac sound and imagination is shared.

With Forged ringing in our ears it is easy to be excited about what is ahead for and from Maziac because as suggested, they have created one of the year’s finest moments so far.

Forged is released July 5th; available @ https://maziacband.bandcamp.com/album/forged

https://www.facebook.com/MaziacBand/   https://twitter.com/maziacband

Pete RingMaster 05/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dark Stares – The Lightning Echo

Darkly haunting and persistently mesmeric, The Lightning Echo is the new album from UK rockers Dark Stares. The successor to their acclaimed debut, Darker Days Are Here to Stay, the new release provides twelve tracks which lure the listener and imagination into the realm between warm and portentous dreams; each a siren of intimation and reflection which enjoyably proved rather hard to escape.

St Albans hailing, Dark Stares has been a persistent captivation from their early tracks and EPs such as Octopon and Soul Contract through to that creatively potent first full-length of last year. Looking back to Darker Days Are Here to Stay, there is no doubt that The Lightning Echo is the natural progression to its predecessor but equally it has evolved its own fascination and unique character of sound; a nagging seduction which wraps the senses like a crepuscular animal.

The album immediately strides through ears with You Know Me, the track’s high kneed beats stamping authority on attention as the fuzz bred grooves of Harry Collins wind around them and the equally magnetic tones of vocalist Miles Kristian Howell. From the single song alone it is easy to hear why Queens Of The Stone Age is often used as a comparison though there is no escaping the singular identity of the Dark Stares sound either.

The highly rousing start is prolonged by the similarly anthemic Dance, a tenacious command on the body bound in the dark climes of surf/desert rock. Again the imposing yet contagious lure of Brett Harland Howell’s bass and Taylor Howell’s spirited beats manipulate song and listener, the Middle Eastern lures cast by Collin’s guitar quite irresistible in one of the album’s major peaks.

Next up Spell You’ve Cast is a similarly beguiling temptress if a slightly sinistrous one, its body a writhing tease of grooves and enticing vocals across almost predatory rhythms while the following Crusader brings a dustier desert rock landscaped croon with volatility in its rich fertile earth. Each made for a riveting proposition if the first with fiercer temptation as too Mr Midnight with its rapacious crawl and tantalising menace. As those around it, the magnificent encounter spins a web of flavour and suggestion sparking imagination and appetite for its tenebrific charm and bait.

There is something of a Doors meets Muse shimmer to The Shadows and Faceless Man, the first with its mercurial climate and compelling sonic grumble breeding sheer dark captivation and through the second wrapping an emotive melodic shroud around ears before breaking out into its pensive musing. Sandwiched between them is Today, a song edging more firmly to the sixties psychedelia of Morison and co. and though it does not quite match up to those alongside one that only grips attention and enjoyment.

After them, In My Pocket initially shimmers before catching flame, repeating its persuasive melodic cycle with greater intensity as Zedi Forder-esque hues bring earnest breath to the increasingly compelling encounter while in turn intrigue soaked and with disquieting glamour Misty Lanes makes its potent play for best track honours.

The album concludes with the radiantly rapacious saunter of Dead and Gone and lastly the hearty rock ‘n’ roll of Rebel Angel. Both tracks hit the spot with the first another simply adding to the numerous reasons as to why The Lightning Echo should not be ignored.

Easily The Lightning Echo is the finest moment with Dark Stares to date, one which for us only gets more thrilling and addictive by the listen.

The Lightning Echo is out across most stores May 31st.

https://www.darkstares.com/   https://www.facebook.com/DarkStares/   https://twitter.com/dark_stares

Pete RingMaster 30/05/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

TREP – Lucian EP

Since forming two years back, Welsh metallers TREP has earned potent support and reputation across South Wales. Now they are hoping to spark similar reactions further afield with the release of their debut EP, Lucian and with it offering up five slices of imaginatively woven alt-metal it is not too hard to expect decent success in the intent and hopes of the Cardiff based trio.

Lucian revels in the band’s mix of classic and modern alternative metal, its character nurtured in melodic dexterity and rousing choruses gifted with individual craft. Freshly breathed and individually natured it also embraces inspirational hues of bands such as Muse, QOTSA, Mastodon, Tool and Breaking Benjamin; the first pair openly spicing the EP and its song’s inventive flavouring.

The first of two EPs which together unveil an elaborate story with themes looking at “dystopia, a dictatorship, and the use of technology for a chance at a better world…but at what cost?” the swiftly fascinating Lucian opens up with the single Silence the Crows. Immediately a guitar cast wire entangles ears, winding around their flesh with intimation and dexterity as rhythms gather their bait and in turn the quickly captivating vocal blend of guitarist Rhys Evans and the supporting tones of bassist Sam Green and drummer Max Hill steps forward. There is a flirtatious touch and lure to the song from its first breath but equally a snarl in its melodic almost deceitful smile, an edge which is as much threat as it is sonic enterprise as Evans guitar reveals greater flavouring and invention by the passage.

It is easy to hear why the song made a more than decent lure to attention when released as a demo in 2017, and is now flourishing in the band’s growth in sound and the surroundings of the EP; its rich presence matched by that of next up The Time You Have Lost. There is something familiar to the track which only adds to its swift lure and bold enterprise whilst welcoming an array of melodic and sonic hues to its creative breast. Arguably even more virulent than its infectious predecessor, the song equally has its own volatile instincts which just add to its drama and increasingly captivation.

The EP’s best track is followed by the equally enticing It’ll Never Happen. Rising on a calmer breeze of sound and attack, it strolls with inescapable catchiness but all the while is brewing up the next twist and turn which then breeds another moment of fluid but unpredictable adventure. Maybe more of a grower than its predecessor despite its swift persuasion, the song rises to set down one more highlight of Lucian before another potent bloom in Architect spins its own dextrous and resourceful web around ears. Classic metal spicing accompanies its rise, Avenged Sevenfold coming to mind a little as the song broadens its tempting but also there is something to it which carries an eighties rock/new wave flavouring. It is an essence which teased within earlier songs but is a rich scent here even if a direct comparison still evades our ears.

The outstanding Better World brings the release to a close, the song an alluring mix of melodic metal and stoner infused rock ‘n’ roll with rich grooves and versatile rhythms offering to references to the likes of Mastodon and Red Fang. Again the great vocal mix of the trio is a magnet within the captivation of the sounds set on casting their own adventure and eager temptation.

Impressive from the off and only increasing its stature and potency over time and listens, Lucian is a striking and rousing first proper introduction to TREP; so much so we are already greedily anticipating the next chapter in the sonic story.

The Lucien EP is out now; available @ https://trepmerch.bigcartel.com

https://www.facebook.com/TrepBand/

 Pete RingMaster 21/03/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Glorybots – Nomad

What can we reveal to you about Glorybots? Well background wise, very little except that it is a solo project, seemingly, of a musician hailing from Seattle creating a post punk/gothic pop sound which had very little trouble captivating our ears.

Our introduction to the “ Dark Alien Pop” of Glorybots comes through new single Nomad, a brand new track very quickly released after the unveiling of a debut album last November called Dark Alien Pop. A hindsight listen to the latter reveals that Nomad is a rich echo of the goodness to be found within the full-length but also it brings its own new adventure and prowess in sound and imagination.

Keys immediately entice and intrigue as the track’s realm and climate is soon an open intimation. The other-worldly landscape in turn swiftly welcomes equally alluring vocals and it is their arrival which soon sparks of the song into full bloom. Enjoyably proving hard to pin down, the song is something akin to a blend of Muse, early Human League, and Dalek I Love You with just a tint of Bowie at times.  That in itself is just a tease to the individuality of song and sound while hinting at why it’s swift captivation.

Nomad is a treat of a song and gateway into the music of Glorybots, a tantalising adventure band and listener can only prosper together from with its deserved attention.

Nomads is available now @ https://glorybots.bandcamp.com/track/nomad-radio-edit

https://glorybots.com/   https://www.facebook.com/DarkAlienPop/   https://twitter.com/gloryBots

Pete RingMaster 30/01/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Desert Clouds – Nothing Beyond The Cage

It is probably fair to say that we did not make an immediate connection with the new album from UK based rockers Desert Clouds yet there was a certain lure which took us back to its atmospheric embrace with intrigue and enthusiasm. It was an essence which grew richer as band and release, Nothing Beyond The Cage, blossomed by the listen into a fascinating and increasingly persuasive proposition.

Formed in 2008 in Naples, Italy, Desert Clouds relocated to London two years later. It was a time which saw instability in the band’s line-up though things were far more settled by the time 2017 EP, Time Distortions, was released; an encounter which drew strong attention the way of the band, praise carrying interest which was only built upon by subsequent singles in Speed of Light and Under Tons, both unveiled last year. It is easy to imagine that Nothing Beyond The Cage will only increase the reputation and stature of the quartet within the UK rock scene with its multi-flavoured and atmospherically provocative adventure.

Nurtured in a mix of grunge, stoner, doom, psych and alternative rock, the band’s sound is a seductive trespass as forceful and mercurial as it is plaintively intimate and brooding. Often it comes over within Nothing Beyond The Cage like a raw Doors meets a predacious Kyuss aligned to the emotive howls of early Coldplay amidst the soulful winds of Soundgarden but emerging if not boldly unique certainly clearly individual to Desert Clouds.

The album opens up with The Outcast Trail (See you Chris), a sullenly thoughtful ballad built on a web of melodic imagination and vocal emotion which roars like a funeral pyre in fiery crescendos. Unsurprisingly there are thick Soundgarden hues to the outstanding track, a tribute to Chris Cornell, with its sonic and emotive heat evocative and invasive, its enterprise seriously magnetic led by the inescapably compelling vocals.

The following Speed Of Light opens with a just as dark air, the bass of Julius Caesar a portentous throb within the wiry web and earthier riffs of guitarists/vocalists David Land and Val L. Wallace. With every passing note and vocal lure, the song’s intensity and drama increases, brewing up into a controlled yet feral blaze spiked by the predacious beats of Andrea Orabona. Though it lacked the spark of its outstanding predecessor for our appetite, the song enticed and lingered behind its wake before next up Take Off harassed the senses with its moody almost irritable melodic roar. Grooved tendrils vine the track with increasing captivation, their incandescent lures lava-esque within the song’s muggy climate.

The calmer but mercurial balladry of Under Tons tempts next, its tenacious croon as untamed as it is intimately restrained with every moment contrasted within another twist courtesy of craft and imagination before Overmore springs its desert/psych rock exploits on ears. A certain QOTSA lining adds to a swift appeal while its successor The Judgement carries a Coldplay/Muse like spicing which grew more flavoursome by the listen. All three tracks flourished over time whilst equally sharing the, at times understated but certainly not hidden, broad palette of sound the band creates with.

Final track is Whistling In The Rain, an almost bestial encounter in its prowling gait and ursine-esque growl but lava-like in its sonic climate and scorching winds. From vocals to guitar, rhythms to atmospheric conjuring, the song is another mighty highlight to Nothing Beyond The Cage, a release which we might have needed time to take to but have with real eagerness once we clicked.

Nothing Beyond The Cage is released January 18th.

https://www.desertclouds.net/   https://www.facebook.com/desertclouds/   https://twitter.com/TheDesertClouds

Pete RingMaster 17/01/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright