Desperate Machines – Complet_

It was back in 2014 when in a year of striking releases, American progressive/experimental rock band In Progress left their very potent mark with the album North Atlantic Echoes. The band was the creation of Jake Rosenberg and John Dillon and with a host of guests provided one increasingly fascinating and impressive adventure few rivalled at that time in the progressive rock scene. Since then the duo has seemingly been quiet, evading attention but obviously busy as they have returned with a new project in the shape of Desperate Machines and a debut EP which in distinctly different ways has made the same rich impact on our ears and imagination.

As the three tracks making up Complet_ reveals defining the Desperate Machines sound is never going to be a precise exercise with its tapestries and soundscapes of electronic, progressive rock, industrial, atmospheric and experimental essences and textures but an adventure which will keep imaginations busy and hungry if they herald what is to come ahead.

The EP opens up with Complete and as all tracks within the EP sees Kevin Moore (Chroma Key, OSI, ex-Dream Theater) guesting on vocals as well as providing lyrics. From the shadows the song looms up, its industrial breath springing animated beats and the instantly gripping gnarly growl of Dillon’s bass. Just a rush of seconds in and already the song is a web of flavours and textures, every subsequent twist indeed almost each second the gateway into fresh styles and bold imagination as the captivating tones of Moore rise amongst the synth, keys, and guitar enterprise of Rosenberg and Dillon. The gait of the track is funky, its breath dark with a Nine Inch Nails meets Deftones-esque melancholy and every moment as infectious as it is captivating, indeed haunting.

It is an effortlessly magnetic affair but is still slightly eclipsed by the magnificent Our War. Again from the start rhythms provide a manipulative enticement, melodies caressing and adding to the increasing urging of participation from hips and feet. Alongside Moore, Marjorie Boggs Vazquez adds additional guest vocals, further radiance in the mercurial but relentlessly magnetic encounter. As with its predecessor, every moment offers a fresh surprise with each twist as unpredictable in sound and invention as it is irresistible.

The release is completed by the original demo for Plan B, the song which is said to be the spark bringing Desperate Machines to life several years ago. From an industrial underground, a piano teases the imagination with its intimacy and touch, vocals soon alongside bringing similar intimation and fascination. A hint of a scent in both previous songs, the third strongly reminds of eighties band Comsat Angels and like many of that band’s tracks had us drooling in admiration and desire for more.

Though we had not realised it at the time, there was a gap without In Progress which was waiting to be filled. Rosenberg and Dillon have returned to do not only that but occupy many other areas lacking the imagination and sound which Desperate Machines brings with them.

Complet_ is out now @ https://desperatemachines.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/desperatemachines/

Pete RingMaster 08/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Inkräktare – We Are Not Really Here

credit Mark Wallace

As we keenly sink into the creative depths of the new album from Inkräktare once more for the actual writing of this review, it is hard to remember any encounter in recent times as absorbing yet unsettling and as invigorating but disturbingly haunting as We Are Not Really Here. It brings a collection of tracks which voraciously embrace the listener, engulfing their senses and imagination in a proposition as sonically claustrophobic as it is expansive in sound and intimation.

We Are Not Really Here comes ten years after the first Inkräktare full-length and sees producer and multi-instrumentalist Dean Garcia (Curve, SPC ECO, S T F U, Blurred City Lights) creatively and in sound poetically igniting the dark and invasive soundscapes created by his collaborative partner, Mark Wallbridge (a.k.a. Vasko The Pig). It is a riveting union of craft and imagination which makes their new album one compelling trespass which is made only more enthralling by the vocal presence of Rose Berlin (SPC ECO) and Preston Maddox (Bloody Knives and S T F U).

Album opener Speak Out Loud called to the imagination from its first crystalline breath, keys a radiant lure within the darker electronic landscape soon unfolding within ears as the hypnotic tones of Berlin serenade quickly enveloped senses. Even in its enthralling beauty there is a dark intensity brewing within the song; a gathering fume of shadows which just as eagerly captivated as the kaleidoscope of light above them.

The following Say Goodbye To You comes from a more shadowy depth but too brings a magnetic elegance and lure to temper the volatile and agitated heart of the song. With Maddox’s voice another rich lure in the rapaciously mercurial insistence of the song, it invites and devours in equal intensity and craft before Terrified explores similarly dark corners and textures within its drifting sonic winds; nightmare and alluring intimation embracing each other’s contrasting hues. Even with Berlin’s tones a safe caress if succubus like in the haunting embrace, the track disturbs as it seduces while The Night Growls prowls the same mental landscape with predatory intent with Wallbridge’s tones in turn a dark protagonist in suffocating aural and emotive fog. Both tracks simply bewitched the senses and festered in the imagination, the Nine Inch Nails toned latter especially irresistible as it consumed with voracious, tenebrous temptation.

The nagging enterprise and breath of Free The World equally proved a spellbinding exploration, Berlin again a light for the moth of greedy curiosity for the song’s fascination and mercurial landscape while We Are Broken and We Are Not Really Here with their respective electro pop breath and evocative dub nurtured escapade only fuelled captivation even if the first did not quite hit the addictive hazard warning heights of its successor.

Who Cares offers another melodic sunspot in a richly atmospheric embrace while Saphirr Bomb after is like a sonic house of mirrors, each sheet of melodic crystal shattered or tainted by the invasive shadows of darkness as the spellbinding track gripped ears and psyche. Echoing the album as a whole, both songs brought warm light and invasive disturbance to ears and thoughts, a striking enterprise and suggestion just as fertile within the toxically crawling, senses chaffing, emotion disturbing Husk.

Closing with the thought questioning Could There Be?, a sand storm of melodic grains and sonic resonance, We Are Not Really Here is a release which reveals and gives more by the listen. It is an encounter which takes the listener out of step with reality yet throws a provocative light upon all the world’s emotional darkness and physical flaws whilst providing unbridled temptation.

We Are Not Really Here is out now via ELaB Recordings; available @ https://inkraktare.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Inkraktare   https://twitter.com/VaskoThePig

Pete RingMaster 04/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Bait – DLP

Going into the review of the new single from UK outfit Bait it took us by surprise just how long ago we drooled over the band’s self-titled debut album. It feels like yesterday but was at the beginning of 2017 so the fact that it still features on our just for pleasure ‘turntables’ shows how pleasurable we found it. DLP is destined to join that compelling full-length, the track a wonderfully nagging and rousing slice of the band’s unpredictable and riveting sonic imagination.

Southend based Bait first tempted almost taunted us with a track upon the Alternative Occupations EP from Cool Thing Records which featured four of its striking bands. The intrigue and appetite the song bred was richly fed by the debut Bait album, addictively satisfied by the unique fusion of punk, post punk, and industrial espionage which thrilled within. So you can imagine the tingle when the band’s vocalist/songwriter Michael Webster got in touch with their latest track. Of course there are never guarantees, expectations and assumptions always there to be shot down but not this time. DLP was another addiction in the waiting and a big excuse for us to again push you all towards the creative exploits of Mike, Luke Branch, Jim Webster, and M R E.

Synths instantly mark their territory as DLP takes a mere breath to calmly entice, its second exhalation springing a rapacious but inviting stroll impossible to prevent hips and neck muscles responding too. There is an inherent darkness and threat to it all though, that delicious niggle which has marked previous tracks from the band and simply accentuates all the hues and manipulative agility of the song.

At times it calls on ears and imagination like a tenebrific blend of Malicious Damage era Killing Joke, Dalek I/Dalek I Love You, and Nine Inch Nails, but with bleakness as radiant as it is dissonant. Even with those clues to their characters, song and sound are fiercely unique to Bait and barely come close to any true comparisons.

DLP is another invigorating and galvanic outing with Bait, an experience which challenges and rewards, questions and supports with unapologetic eagerness. If you have not checked out this band shame on you, the perfect moment though is now.

DLP is out now via Cool Thing Records.

https://www.facebook.com/hatebait   https://twitter.com/hate_bait

Pete RingMaster 01/05/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hauméa – Unborn

Emerging earlier this year, Hauméa is a quartet from Alençon in France making a rather potent impression with their debut EP, Unborn. Offering four tracks bristling with a host of rock and metal nurtured flavours, the release makes for a captivating introduction to a band easy to see enticing strong attention with their temptation loaded sound.

Formed by bassist Léa Zima and guitarist Andy, the Hauméa was soon completed by the addition of vocalist Niko Lorelei drummer and Sébastien Chauvin. Their individual musical backgrounds and experiences has bred a sound which embraces an array of styles and flavours; a proposition as melodically seductive as it is imposingly aggressive and as imaginatively delivered as it is emotionally raw.

The Unborn EP opens up with its title track, the song quickly laying down its persuasive rhythmic and sonic bait. In full bloom, the track is a mix of the controlled and fevered, especially potent when its shackles are off. It is a strong start revealing the enterprise within the band’s sound and songwriting as well as individual craft. Equally the varied blend of metal and rock the band merges shows itself a magnetic proposal though really captivated the imagination across its following companions starting with Not Usual.

The second track instantly had attention gripped with its opening rally of beats, a tempting soon fully ablaze as guitars and bass unleashed their lustful exploits. Similarly there is a hungry edge to the vocals which just adds to the captivation. As its grows, the track fuses instinctive ferocity with a Nine Inch Nails-esque tempting, easily twisting from a rousing trespass to a melodic seduction and back as it easily eclipses its predecessor.

Dad is Fool makes its entrance on a deceptively calm beckoning but soon is unleashing a tide of creative trespass which in turn springs a contagious stroll of rhythmic and sonic enticement. Still a volatile edge remains though; a psychosis which ignites with predatory intent across the track’s bold and unpredictable landscape. As the previous track, it is an impressively stirring encounter marking out Hauméa as a highly potent and compelling proposition.

Instantly a sonic spiral around invasively swing rhythms marks the final track of Unborn, the mercurial Here I Am a cauldron of sound and intimation carrying threat and temptation. Both essences proceed to fuel each twist and turn within a track fluidly slipping from predation to seduction time and time again.

At its most striking in its middle but bookended by songs which also easily stirred the appetite, Unborn is a strongly convincing and exciting first meeting with Hauméa suggesting the potential of rather striking times ahead. Our anticipation is already rising.

The Unborn EP is available @ https://haumeaband136108.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/Haumea136108/

Pete RingMaster 18/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dead Register – Captive

It is two years since Atlanta outfit Dead Register not only thrilled but truly captivated us with debut album Fiber. It was a collection of tracks bred in the rich essences of doom, gothic, and post rock but equally embraced many more flavours to create something as unique as you could imagine or wish. Twenty four or so months on we still cannot truly define their sound or want to as that would be to sterilise its originality and fertility, both as rampant and captivating in the band’s new offering, Captive.

Every word in praise of Fiber by us and so many others can be echoed with zeal in regard to the Captive EP, but not only repeated but escalated as its five tracks venture to mouth-watering new heights in the imaginative craft and inventive prowess of Dead Register. The new EP sees percussionist/drummer Danny Ryann (ex-Gigan) alongside vocalist/bassist M. Chvasta and his wife, Avril Che on bass synth, keys, and backing vocals; Dan Dixon (Whores, The Life and Times, PLS PLS, Biters) recording, mixing, and mastering their now proposition.

Captive opens up with its title track, a dark mist springing the lumbering gait of the song but a funereal step soon wrapped in romancing melodies as a shadow bred atmosphere descends. Magnetic rhythms are swiftly courted by the ever potent and alluring tones of Chvasta, both in turn hugged by the heavy emotive doom gaze breath of the track. Haunting and mesmeric, the song continues to seduce and impose, drama soaking very brooding note and harmonic utterance trespassing and seducing the senses.

It is a highly tantalising and increasingly captivating beginning to the release and one as powerfully continued by next up Ender. A song exploring love and loss and “a reminder to savor even the most mundane idiosyncrasies that “make” our loved ones who they are”, a premise easy to relate to, it rousingly smoulders in ears and thoughts but a thick simmer with volatility which only enriches its emotional incitement and a sound with Type O Negative/Nine Inch Nails hues. There is also a breath to the track and its successors which reminds of eighties band, The Sound; an instinctively downbeat almost depressive yet rousing dark essence which is especially apparent in the fiercely infectious Heresy. From its predacious nagging bassline to the sonic tendrils and Chvasta’s transfixing vocals, the track is pure temptation as virulently catchy as it is melancholically consuming.

A riveting cover of the Dead and Gone track Blood from a Ghost follows, Dead Register infusing it with a voraciously dark elegance without defusing its raw heart and anguish. Few covers in our experience improve on the original but the threesome certainly flirts with that success before Monochrome completes the aural mastery of Captive with its own tenebrific majesty soaked in emotive dissonance. A breath-taking and arousing yet corrosive romance, the track is a maelstrom of destruction and tenderness and quite irresistible.

It is a spellbinding prowess which devours the whole of Captives and feeds the infatuation we have already found for the band. If in our words Fiber was “dark magic, emotional trespassing, and quite wonderful”, Captive is pure aural alchemy and one of the year’s essential encounters.

Captive is released November 2nd; available @ https://deadregister.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/deadregister

 Pete RingMaster 02/11/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Sick N’ Beautiful – Element of Sex

pic by Stefano Mastronicola

There are some bands which instinctively allure attention and it is fair to say that Sick N’ Beautiful is one such persuasion as their recent headlining UK tour proved. Their new album Element of Sex swiftly and increasingly shows why they made a potent impact through those shows alone, a release which whilst lacking the visual theatrical drama of their live presence uncages ten virulent slices of devilish rock ‘n’ roll.

“A gang of rockin’ freakshow pirates from outer space”, Sick N’ Beautiful is a quintet creating an industrial hard rock web of intrigue and sonic animation awash with creative drama. Brewed with sci-fi and cyberpunk visuals whilst embracing inspirations from a kaleidoscope of artists including Rob Zombie, Nine Inch Nails, Alice Cooper, Kiss, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, and No Doubt, the “intergalactic refugee’s” music is a cascade of flavours and enterprise within its hard rock nurtured imagination. In boldness and drama there is something of The Tubes to the band’s presence too which only adds to its magnetism live and now within Element of Sex.

Familiarity and inventive uniqueness collude from the first breath of the album with opener Fire True, an orchestral coaxing the first lure quickly infested with wiry tendrils of guitar which in turn entice the instantly rich ear grabbing vocals of Herma. Within seconds the track is an imposing wall of thick infectious sound speared by the scything swings of drummer Evey. Pop catchy and metal aggressive the track imposes and seduces in equal measure with the organic drama of the band’s imagination in every syllable, note, and twist.

It is an infectious tempest of an encounter instantly backed and eclipsed by next up Megalomaniacal. Straight away it has more urgency and greater flexibility in its attack; snarling, biting, and dancing with the senses like a carnal celebration behind the fiercely magnetic prowess of Hermes. Big Daddy Ray’s bass has a great rockabilly swing to its growl at times whilst guitarists Rev C2 and Lobo spring a trap of enterprise so easy to relish especially when the song takes a breath from its boisterous invasion.

The calmer All Wanna Go To Heaven through its initial less energetic entrance, compared to its predecessors, only leads into a snare of boldly catchy and melodically enticing temptation. The voice of Hermes once more stands tall and captivating within the song, a given proven track by track as the sounds around her cast their creative theatres. Pop, rock, and metal strands all go into its ear wrapping weave before the contagion of Hellawake continues the diversity bred within the Sick N’ Beautiful’s sound with its electro pop meets industrial punk shuffle.

Through the tempestuous roar and character of Slam! and the salacious sonic exploits of Hexxx (The Element Of Sex), the album just gets more hectic and fun, both songs a spark for ears and body with their extremely danceable antics, the outstanding second of the two especially manipulative as it grabs limbs like a puppeteer.

Cryptid similarly just opens up the throttle from its first gasp; rhythms and imposing incitement within the scuzzy tides of guitars wired with melodic and hook laced tempting. It is another where certain moments unite with ears like an old friend whilst bringing wholly new propositions alongside for a compelling mix exploited just as ably by New Witch 666 (The Rising). Its EBM-esque opening is a deceit for the dark shadows and intent lurking closely behind and a continuing enticement as those textures take rein of the devilish affair. Though its rabidity is under control for the main it is there festering in the track’s meaty body and demonic intent.

The skilfully woven Heart December (Gates II) with its dark drama and gothic rock grandeur was a slow burner for our ears, a track which never quite ignited as those before it but continues to be a compelling intrigue on ears and imagination even against the album closing blaze of C*Mmunion. Aggressive and at times musically grouchy but as greedily catchy as you could wish, it brings the album and the torrent of fun to a rousing conclusion.

And that pretty much sums up Element of Sex as a whole; insatiably infectious, relentlessly rousing, and unapologetically fun. Maybe Sick N’ Beautiful is a proposition which is at its very best live when all of its elements come together musically, visually and indeed dramatically but their new offering shows their songs make for very potent propositions all on their own.

Element of Sex is out now on the band’s own Rosary Lane Records; available @ https://www.sicknbeautiful.com/store and other stores.

https://www.sicknbeautiful.com/   https://www.facebook.com/sicknbeautifulband/   https://twitter.com/sicknb

Pete RingMaster 10/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

As A New Revolt – Speechless

Unleashing the turbulence and discontent fuelling the world today, As A New Revolt provides a potent voice for the masses and another truly fresh breath for a year with many momentous propositions within its roar. Speechless is a stunning introduction to the duo of Manu Barrero (vocals, machines) and Julien Lhuillier (drums), a four track EP reflecting the oppression around today and the increasing defiance to it but also a title pretty much summing up certainly our lost for words response to its impressive presence.

As A New Revolt create a sound spawned from the feral fusion of rapcore, punk, industrial, hip hop and much more. What emerges is a unique and ravenously rapacious affair driven by the dexterous tenacity of Lhuillier’s rhythms and infested with the sonic discord and vocal dissonance of Barrero. It is a greedily welcomed trespass of noise which swiftly gets under the skin and proceeds to manipulate body and spirit with its almost carnal infestation.

Speechless opens up with its title track, samples and corrosive noise colluding as tension springs an imposing swagger of noise and Barrero’s slightly psychotic tones. An underlying volatility only adds to the threat and lure, the track lumbering along with predacious intent as inspiring rhythms land with calculated intent. Essences akin to bands such as Rage Against The Machine, Pitchshifter, G.R.I.M., and Nine Inch Nails tease within the cauldron, all hues in the stirring and individual web of the French pair.

The following Riot Porn is even more urgent to invade the senses, its gait boisterous but happy to ebb and flow as Barrero fingers song and thoughts with his vocal stabs. As within its predecessor, electronic and melodic tendrils spiral across the encounter, their magnetic attraction and imagination as toxic as the barbarous winds sonically blowing around them. Lhuillier splinters it all with his own gripping rhythmic drama, every beat a shuddering yet anthemic coaxing inciting song and listener alike and managing to be even more manipulative and colossal in next up Now!, a track which steals the show for personal tastes.

With its eastern sonic lures and compelling beats, the track instantly seduces attention, its portentous air gripping the imagination as a tapestry of sound and enterprise aligns in a mutually riveting web. Though not in sound as such there is something of early Killing Joke to the song and band’s general sound, the same kind of rhythmic addictiveness and nagging ingenuity eating away at defences to inescapable success.

Perfect brings things to a close, the song ‘mellower’ in attack but tenebrous in tone and atmosphere as it challenges and incites second by second, note by note, noise by noise. Unsurprisingly after taking in the previous trio of tracks, there is a gloriously capricious character to the assault, a tempestuousness which builds and boils though it is content to menace through simmering provocation too as vocals and rhythms probe and inflame.

It is a superb end to a truly thrilling release which among many mouth-watering and momentous encounters across 2017 just might be the best of the lot.

Speechless is available now through Atypeek Diffusion / Sand Music across most online stores.

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

Pete RingMaster 19/12/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright