Cardboard HIT – Subject to Status

We all have favourite bands which feel like they have been bred to pleasure personal tastes and desires and now adding to our list is UK trio Cardboard HIT. Creating a tantalising mix of punk, alternative and noise rock, and numerous other rock ‘n’ roll nurtured flavours, the East Sussex based band just creatively teased, tickled, and ravished our sweet spot with debut EP Subject to Status.

Though a brand new proposition for us, thanks to an introduction sent by drummer Matt Rouse, the release has been tempting ears for over a year now but well worth highlighting such its potent presence in an overwhelming landscape of bands and encounters very easy to be lost from sight within. With bassist/vocalist Ross Towner and guitarist/vocalist Lee Hayes alongside Rouse, Cardboard HIT opens up their first EP with the irresistible Bobby. Teasing wiry strikes of guitar get things underway, their post punk scent soon a rapid trespass with great Fire Engines like discord to their tempting. The dual vocal strike of Towner and Hayes is as magnetic as their sounds whilst the probing beats of Rouse manipulate ears and instincts with a controlled but bold touch. Growing into something akin to Eighties B-Line Matchbox Disaster and Japanese Fighting Fish in league with eighties band The Three Johns, the track is superb; manna to an already hungry appetite for more.

Say Yes is the next to feed the need, the thick strains of bass and guitar marking out its predecessor enslaving ears again as vocals and a melodic dexterity brings a calmer if still dramatically tenacious enticement. More dance friendly for feet and hips, the song swings with a bullish attitude and infectious boisterousness as again distinctive vocals rouse a similar energy in the music around them.

The grumbling tone of the bass is a delicious ingredient and once again ignites the first breath and subsequent stroll of the band’s latest single All the Voices. Its grumble is tempered by the dexterity of the two prong vocal lure, beats a swiping incitement alongside the calmest texture as the song grows more manic and wicked with every passing second.

That mellower essence is a bolder instinct within closing song Rabbit Hole, though it too has an unpredictable nature and off-kilter instinct which grabs attention and the passions. Showing a whiff of 12 Stone Toddler in its punk ‘n’ pop shuffle, the song has the body bouncing and a hungry want for more in motion in no time; heavy grooves, rapacious rhythms, and a loco invention for the fourth time seducing the senses and spirit.

With Cardboard HIT working on new material as you read, the time feels right for new fans to find the band and be swept away with their punk disco. With a trio of great videos accompanying the EP, Subject to Status is the doorway into an adventure meant to be lustfully devoured.

Subject to Status is available on iTunes, Spotify, and other stores.

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Pete RingMaster 15/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hypochristmutreefuzz – Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia

There is music which is bred out of bedlam, sounds which are seemingly born out of creative psychosis and challenges which are feverishly psychotic; and there is that from Hypochristmutreefuzz. The Belgian noise-rock outfit create a psyche infesting collusion of all that and more; a theatre of fun coming to an insatiable head on their debut album Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia.

Meaning the phobia of long words, Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia immediately hints at the mischief and insanity at play with its off-kilter title spelling; traits swiftly infesting body and spirit from its first seconds. Instantly it has the body bouncing and imagination dancing, unpredictability and that creative madness fuelling every fascinating, entrapping second.

Hailing from Ghent and taking their name from an avant-garde jazz piece by Misha Mengelberg, Hypochristmutreefuzz has already teased and lured acclaim through a self-titled EP in 2015 and a host of surrounding singles. Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia though takes things to a whole new inventive and magnetic level. Drawing on inspirations ranging from The Residents, The Birthday Party, and Sonic Youth to Pere Ubu, Television, PJ Harvey, and The Germans, the quintet instantly traps attention with opener Finger. Teasing tendrils of guitar beckon first, their lures intermittently joined by an electronic throb. It is a lingering enticement with the sonic post punk causticity of Bauhaus and the instinctive though waiting dance antics of an Axis Mundi rising up alongside. The union continues to imposingly quiver as the vocals of guitarist Ramses Van den Eede add their uniqueness, his tones as distinct as the sounds brewing up around them and with all the ingredients in place, the track strolls along with a raw and infectious air; a touch of Asylums and Allusondrugs meets The Residents further colouring the irresistible adventure.

It is a compelling, thrilling start causing hips to swerve and appetite to lick its lips, a tempting just as potent in the following Gums Smile Blood. Getting down to even swifter business, the song offers a punk toned, electronically nurtured virility to its mouth-watering creative animation. Like a blend of De Staat, G.R.I.M, and Big Black, the track prowls and swings with the seduction of a rabid pole dancer before Hypochondria invades with the scuzzy antics of guitarists Jesse Maes and Van den Eede courting the jabbing beats of Elias Devoldere. Carrying a more primal edge compared to its predecessors, the song still flirts with a lightness of whimsy through the synth of Thijs Troch; dark and light, heavy and fuzz entangling across its eventful drama.

Chromakalim is a far calmer experience, its minimalistic entrance reeking of deceit and espionage as vocals stalk attention. That imagined tempest does erupt with unbridled rigour before swiftly settling down again waiting for its return in a volcanic chorus. The bass of Sander Verstraete struts with menace throughout, its intensity leaking into the discord of guitars and keys as the track spreads its mercurial heart. Nothing less than captivating it is still eclipsed by the sauntering haunting of Music Of Spheres. A noir lit, jazz cloaked venture to the atmospheric darkside, the track is a maze of sound and evocative incitement taking ears and imagination down shadow cloaked paths.

From there the album hits its pinnacle with a couple of quite manipulative encounters. First up is Elephantiasis, a slice of schizophrenic yet restrained noise rock which has the listener involved from its first trespassing breath and in eager participation by its vocal and musical meander a host of seconds later. A track which haunts the memory after just one listen it too is then overshadowed by a successor in Clammy Hands. The song is an asylum of imagination and enterprise; a fusion of flavours and styles which too needs barely a handful of breaths to seduce and enslave. A patchwork of vocals amidst an equally varied synth palette of enticing steals the passions even before its chorus has vocal chords hollering and limbs punching.

The mellow though no less cracked balladry of Don’t Drown only mesmerises if without the major impact of the previous duo while One Trick Pony simmers then boldly romps in with a rhythmic tenacity as vocals and add their lively smoulder to that of the sounds. The skittishness of the beats and throb of the bass has the body in eager motion whilst ears are drawn to the melodic beauty sharing their moment. Within it all causticity lies in wait, igniting its fuse further down the line for a scuzzy, electrifying and almost terrifying finale.

The album closes with the funky, noise jaunt of Spitter; a breeding of movement which starts in the big toe and has the whole body popping by its first vocal line and feverish by the time brazzy flames course through the tango of sound. Of course there is an acidity and rough play within its dance; textures only adding to the fun and energy of the encounter when spreading their addictive toxicity. Throw The Magic Numbers, Billy Momo, Pere Ubu, and Primus into a pot, stir with psychotic vigour and you have this, one gripping conclusion to one mighty album.

Its title might be impossible to say, still not possible after twenty tries or and indeed spell with ease, but the contents of Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia are manna to the ears and the loco in us all.

Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaiophobia is out now across most stores an @ https://hypochristmutreefuzz.bandcamp.com/album/hypopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia

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Pete RingMaster 15/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dead Cross- Self Titled

Pic SAWA

As the world seemingly surges rather than drifts into bedlam it is maybe not surprising that a sound is rising to echo it’s chaotic and discord fuelled order. It resonates from the creative union within Dead Cross, a project said to have emerged “out of a series of impractical schemes, fallen-through plans, and last-minute musical experimentation.” Featuring the combined acclaimed talent and creative ingenuity of Dave Lombardo (ex-Slayer, Suicidal Tendencies, Misfits), Mike Patton (Faith No More, Tomahawk, Mr. Bungle, Fantômas….), Justin Pearson (The Locust, Retox), and Michael Crain (Retox, Festival of Dead Deer), Dead Cross has just released their self-titled debut album; a deviously manipulative and skilfully conjured tempest of noise and intent, simply manic manna for the senses and imagination.

There really is no need to provide background to the members of Dead Cross, each individually and within a mass of bands having set down incitements and inspirations so many have fed upon and blossomed their own ventures with. So it is straight to the first breath of the foursome’s first release we go and the initial sonic mist of Seizure and Desist. From its midst surging raw riffs and rampaging rhythms burst, their assault soon joined by the distinctive and ever rapaciously mercurial vocals of Patton. Just as recognisable are the dynamically imaginative and textile swings of Lombardo; his anthemically biting incitement entangled in the sonic rapacity of Crain and the grumbling bestial tones of Pearson’s bass. A senses crumbling assault of hardcore, he track is as multi-flavoured as it is uncompromisingly furious and a hint of the developing web of noise and varied rock ‘n’ roll infesting the punk heart of the release.

The following Idiopathic even further harries and bullies the senses, its rhythms fuelling a barbarous catchiness which spreads to the united vocal attack and raw tone and causticity of the outstanding track. Unpredictability is as rampant as animosity, mischievous craft and fun equally as bold within the senses ravishing, body inciting maelstrom. Every passing second brings a fresh breath of bold and devilish adventure, the track a dancing predator by the time it makes way for the waspish nagging and unrelenting beating of Obedience School. It is glorious stuff, barbarous and harmonically bewitching leaving a tapestry of punk, alternative metal, and gothic rock suggestion.

Shillelagh is simply punk rock yet hardcore unafraid to embrace the spices of other pungent flavours to its infectious animus; the result a venomous contagion which has the body bouncing and appetite drooling before the imagination is enslaved all over again by a riveting cover of the Bauhaus classic Bela Lugosi’s Dead. Infesting it with the kind of energy and boisterousness felt at the Batcave venue back in the day, Dead Cross ensure the shadows and haunting atmosphere of the original are still an invasive temptation; Crain casting veins of melodic acidity which alone beguiles the senses.

The caustic invasion of Divine Filth hits the spot dead centre right after too, Patton and co vocally swinging from imagination’s rafters as the music around them throws itself around like an imaginatively manic dervish, again every passing second bringing new twists and expectations destroying adventure. Grave Slave is equally as tenacious in tone and intent, the Suicidal Tendencies exploits of Lombardo seemingly inspiring the whole of Dead Cross as they funk out with raw intensity and rancorous resourcefulness whilst equally embracing a Melvins meets early Therapy? like friction. It is a highly addictive proposal within an album similarly growing drug like in its temptation.

The persistent creative harassment of The Future Has Been Cancelled matches the lure and entrapment of its predecessor with its own individual and increasingly ravenous quicksand of sound and invention, at one point sinking into a quagmire of heavy seduction before bursting out with its instinctive rabid virulence of energy and sound to head towards the waiting heavy set jaws of Gag Reflex. It too meanders and dashes through a landscape of evolving gaits and twisted manhandling of the listener; each turn increasing its magnetism and our subservience to its manipulation.

The industrially lined shadows of Church of the Motherfuckers brings the album to a mighty conclusion, the track lumbering along with a primal swagger as resonating beauty glistens in its atmosphere. On the ground irritability guides the tempestuous exploits of the track, its climate remaining relatively clam but around a volatile heart which beats with combustibility. Through it all Lombardo springs a rhythmic trap which enslaves body and spirit, his creative mastery the last word in persuasion as the album comes to a thrilling close.

The tag super-group is bound to accompany many references to Dead Cross but ignore them. The band is a real and potent new force in its own right, yes embracing the previous experiences and exploits of its creators but offering something very different and exciting to rival and outshine most hardcore/punk noise exploits around them.

The Dead Cross album is out now via Ipecac Recordings through most stores.

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Pete RingMaster 08/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Tunabunny – PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr

PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr is the new and fifth album from US Transcendental Dance Poppers Tunabunny, a huge adventure which sees the Athens, Georgia hailing quartet at their most poppy, darkest, experimental, and compelling. A double album breaching 28 imagination stoking tracks, it is a kaleidoscope of sound; no track like any other or pretty much any offering from the band to date, and a carousel of creative drama which pushes the listener into places they might not know exist let alone have contemplated.

Apparently PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland Jr is “structured as a song-by-song response to The Beatles’ White Album” and through its songs explores themes such as surveillance, futility, alchemy and winter, metamorphosis and anger whilst its fourth side features a twisting song cycle about motherhood; from pregnancy to birth, through postpartum emotional desolation, to the rebirth of self. Whatever their inspiration, the album’s songs challenge and arouse physically, mentally, and emotionally ensuring you get a full and thrilling workout with the foursome of Mary Jane Hassell, Scott Creney, Brigette Adair Herron, and Jesse Stinnard.

Rather than do our usual track by track look, such its bulging size, we are going to pluck the moments which ignited the imagination most forcibly but be assured barely a moment passes within the whole release without making a potent and appealing impact. From the opening atmospherically sinister Cartesian Theater, a track which appears like an intro but is so much more, Tunabunny set the speakers and passions on fire with Incinerate. A recent single, the track is glorious; a slice of indie pop which has the head bobbing, feet shuffling, and ardour brewing within its first round of seduction. Adding one’s own breath is inevitable to a sublime chorus, the vocals a flirtatious beauty matched in temptation by the gentle swing of the sounds cradling their charm.

There is no better moment within the album but plenty of times rival the height of the superb encounter, the following Noise Problems a swift example with its post punk/new wave canter carrying a definite resemblance to eighties UK band The Passions. The stroll of the bass is as deeply appealing as the wiry jangle of the guitars, vocals again an inescapable magnetism in diversity and harmony whilst the song’s emerging discord is simply delicious.

The indie/psych pop of Seek Consequence is another major magnet; the swaying vocals siren-esque as darker hues brew and evolve behind their lyrical wiles until heatedly bubbling up with a drone like fever while Blackwater Homes rises up from a gentle melodic murmur into another virulently infectious and shadowed canter playing like a mix of Stevie Nicks and Pylon. Worryingly easy to be seduced by its haunting lures, and not for the first or last time fiercely tempting post punk bass bait, the track swiftly worms into the psyche.

The bass again grips the instincts within Oracle, its Psycho Killer like coaxing backed by shiny tendrils of guitar as vocals procrastinate; its success followed by the matching triumph of Start It where PiL meets The Breeders is a good hint to the track’s melodic post punk clamour. These tracks alone show the diversity within PCPPAIWJR, The Raincoats tinged pop clang of Nevermind The Cobblestones and the Slits scented monotone shuffle of Yellow Heart Is My Sky Sign further evidence, both tracks bringing fresh greed in a healthy appetite for the release.

A healthy addictiveness is spawned by the raw swing and charm of the boldly infectious The Way The World Works, the song a dulled yet sparkling gem in the album’s jewellery box of sound and another collusion of band and listener rarely matched outside of the album though within, the minimalistic pop of Me And Nancy, a track with an echo of The Cure on their very first outing, and the dark scuzz fuelled post punk of Pretending To Bend as well as the similarly styled but oh so different Count To Ten rise to the challenge.

There are tracks on the album which explore noise and its depths of suggestion, each inciting the imagination even when they barely grasp a handful of seconds in length; times which really test  but reward the listener’s ability to compose and interpret. With further moments of never less than thoroughly enjoyable and provocative adventure across the album, songs like It Could Be Something, the absorbing and inexplicable Shiftchanger featuring Jason Jackson Wellz, and Magic January all tantalising and enthralling, things are brought to a lengthy imposingly and enjoyable close with the fuzz pop clamour of I Thought I Caught It (With You).

As suggested, every track is a fresh and rewarding twist in the landscape of PCPPAIWJR, not one of them merely filling space and all firing up ears and imagination. Not for the first time Tunabunny has provided not only a real treat to mull over and enjoy, but another new plateau in their invention and imagination.

PCP Presents Alice In Wonderland JR is out now via HHBTM Records @ http://hhbtm.com/item.php?item_id=640 and https://tunabunny.bandcamp.com/album/pcp-presents-alice-in-wonderland-jr

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Pete RingMaster 12/07/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Elevant – Normal Life EP

We cannot say why but the new EP from UK rock band Elevant kept reminding of fellow Liverpudlian Pete Wylie. It certainly was not in the music, the band and one of their home city’s most essential musical inspirations creating music as similar as night and day yet it was a nagging thought throughout the Normal Life EP. Moving on though, the trio’s new release is a dark and often emotionally imposing proposal but equally one open to infection loaded grooves and an instinctive rock ‘n’ roll catchiness which manages to accentuate rather than temper its shadow clad themes of “love, war, disillusion and displacement.”

Consisting of lead vocalist/guitarist Michael Edward, bassist/vocalist Hannah Lodge, and drummer/vocalist Tom Shand, Elevant has grown since emerging in 2014 to be a potent part of the Liverpool music scene as a band and in its support, Edwards fresh from organising and playing the successful Wrong Festival in Liverpool which also featured the likes of Bo Ningen, The Wytches, Part Chimp, Heck, Evil Blizzard and numerous more. They have also released a trio of increasingly well-received and praised albums with the third, There is a Tide especially lauded. Now it is the Normal Life EP casting its reflections and imaginative exploration upon ears and body, and a fine evocation of both it is too with its web of heavy and alternative rock, psych and krautrock, and grungier elements infused with plenty more spices.

Recorded at Abbey Road by Sam Jones and mastered by Pete Maher (Jack Jones/Scissor Sisters/U2), Normal Life opens with Acral Affection and instantly had ears and appetite enticed with a delicious post punk bassline carrying a funky inclination to its nature as slithers of guitars spark and scythe enticingly across its bows. With firmly skipping beats, the coaxing is swiftly addictive and only compacted by the equally inviting tones of Edwards before a momentary crescendo erupts, the cycle revisited quickly after again. Imagine a collusion between Pere Ubu, Artery, Modern Eon, and Japanese Fighting Fish and you get a glimpse of the song but not the whole picture of its enjoyably but ultimately truly hard to pin down sound.

And that broad tapestry is pushed again by the following Slow, its jazzy funk kissed entrance wrapped in a beguiling atmosphere blossoming further with post rock essences and noise rock trespasses as vocals add their enticement. With melodies courting more Beatles like hues throughout, it is an intriguing affair, slowly working its lures compared to the more direct bait of its predecessor but seeping into and lingering in psyche and appetite with each passing twist and fascinating layer, each helping building up the ingredients and invention of a desert rock/psychedelia shaped finale.

The outstanding Stabs has the body bouncing and imagination weaving with its enslaving post/garage punk nagging around Edwards’ expressive croon, all gaining greater volatility and tempestuousness syllable by note as the track draws on wider flavours for its alluring irritability and spiky trespass. The bass of Lodge is brooding and gripping, the swings of Shand invasive and anthemic as Edwards springs another round of provocative hooks and emotive insights.

The prowling shadows of next up Somewhere Safe uses mere breaths to seduce the senses, its shimmering seventies psychedelia nurtured melodies swiftly absorbing the imagination. It is with the muscular incursion of rhythms and riff led energy though where the track really ignites, an eruption leaving a touch of its intensity in the subsequent return of that initial smouldering air. The track is a fascination for ears and thoughts, not quite matching up to its predecessors for personal preferences but captivating from start to finish before the EP’s title track rumbles and grumbles to bring the release to a stirring conclusion. The final song’s aggressive nature is not adverse to melodic flames and harmonic warmth though, both coating the track’s more feral instincts.

It is a great end to an EP which grabs attention first time around and only incites greater involvement and hunger for its intriguing web of sound and creative drama thereon in.

The Normal Life EP is out now on Loner Noise @ https://elevant.bandcamp.com/

https://elevantband.com/    https://www.facebook.com/Elevantmusik/    https://www.instagram.com/elevantmusik/

Pete RingMaster 03/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hey Colossus – The Guillotine

As proven time and time again with UK outfit Hey Colossus, the only thing expectations can assume is that any encounter with them will be thickly compelling and singularly distinct in theirs and the surrounding musical landscape. And so it is with new album The Guillotine, a release taking the sextet’s sound to a new terrain of adventure and unpredictability whilst bewitching body and imagination like never before.

Formed in 2013, Hey Colossus have persistently nurtured and evolved their sound and its exploration; from the earlier lo-fi sourced, psychedelic and heavy noise rock bred triumphs of Radio Static High and In Black And Gold, the two albums which really drew thick attention the way of the band through the more hi-fi live causticity of Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo, nothing has ever stood still or relaxed into one realm of imagination. Within those albums, there was an open quest to push things further and further.  The Guillotine is no different, a creative emprise of brooding tones and dark atmospheres woven into trespasses of the imagination and physical arousing of body and spirit. Using hindsight, there has been hints to this new vein of fertility within previous releases, especially those just mentioned but glimpses of something startling and vigorously thrilling which trespasses us now.

The Guillotine sees the controlled and new mesmeric tones of Paul Sykes to the fore, his presence almost like a storyteller and as boldly alluring as the sounds and voices found within the collective ingenuity of Rhys Llewellyn, Roo Farthing, Robert Davis, Joe Thompson, and Timothy Farthing alongside. The album begins with the tantalising dark psych rock of Honest To God, a track which is pure alchemy. Its initial wiry psych shimmer breeds a post punk lined meander as a slowly strolling guitar and bass grooves saunter across the awakening web of temptation. Every aspect is a rich lure, accentuated by Sykes’ gentle but dark vocal swing. Like a nostalgia kissed mix of Spizz Energi, Zanti Misfitz, and The Three Johns, the song teases the psyche with its seductive fingers while brewing up a raw energy which erupts with scuzzy zeal. Revolving through each stage of its perpetual metamorphosis, the song is pure manna for noise/post/psych punk hungry ears and appetite.

The exceptional start is swiftly followed by the fuzzier venture of Back In The Room, a track rolling on hypnotic rhythms and fizzing upon the senses with its three guitar pronged shuffle. The dual attack of vocals is just as magnetic, a collusion resourcefully driving the volatile proposition with a hint of The Birthday Party adding to its arousing shadows and increasingly rabid head. The song is part nagging dirge and part raw but multi-textured seduction united in a thorough captivation which eventually makes way for the gentler climate of Calenture Boy which smuggles its increasing delirium through ears while a smouldering climate is equally blessed with a sonic psychosis which sizzles with increasing heat second by second.

Its raw croon is followed by the mercurial enterprise of Experts Toll where beats dance with flirtatious trespass as the bass throws its own captivating dark steps into a jungle of craft and skittish imagination. The song’s relatively calm opening and agitated dexterity is subsequently given to more forceful inclinations, the track twisting into a heavily stomping, dirtily intensive brawl of enticing sound cored again by those unruffled vocals before Potions casts its own somnolent charms around ears like a melodic narcotic shaped with stout rhythms and veined with willowy psychedelic tendrils. As its creative elixir thickens so does its intensity but moving through the stages of evocative density with a calm and fluid ingenuity.

Though every track within The Guillotine had us locked into its snare, certain moments simply steal the passions; Englishman the stealthiest, glorious one of all. A stroll of senses clipping beats, broody basslines, and teasing riffs, the song simply bewitches. Scything melodies and infection loaded vocals only add to the irresistible bait enslaving ears and imagination which though not necessarily in matching sound, creates a tapestry rich in the attributes of XTC, Melvins, Talking Heads, and Fugazi; all twisted and reenergised by the unique imagination of Hey Colossus for total bliss.

The album concludes with firstly In A Collision, another brooding trap of sound and creative cunning as shadowy as it is instinctively catchy, even when its once darkly mellow body and atmosphere ignites with dirty raptorial virility. Raw beauty from start to finish, the song is succeeded by the album’s title track, an even more predatory proposal drenched in melancholy, antipathy, and sonic mesmerism with the bass at its earthiest, carnivorous best. With the guitars as potent in elegance or being abrasively bracing, the song is a final captivation to get hooked on and lost in.

The Guillotine is simply magnificent, leaping to the frontline of favourite releases of the year so far with its manipulation of body and imagination while proving Hey Colossus as one of, if not the, most exciting thing in the weaving of noise around.

The Guillotine is out June 2nd through Rocket Recordings and available @ https://heycolossus.bandcamp.com/album/the-guillotine

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Pete RingMaster 02/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Three Way Plane – Your Kingdom, My Life

Way back in 2013, Greek outfit Three Way Plane got in touch and introduced us to themselves and their new EP Fire. It was a potential loaded indie/post punk infused proposition which was bitingly eclectic and imaginatively rampant suggesting that the 2004 formed band was ready to tap into attention far beyond their local success. They have not quite found that breakthrough since in a period which was assumedly busy for them but appearing quiet on the outside. Things might just be about to change though as the Athens outfit release their second album Your Kingdom, My Life and another collusion of sonic diversity and creative adventure.

Two years after forming the band released their first EP, Bright Days the first clue to the growing invention in their punk nurtured sound though it was their well-received debut album, give us something new to shout, which really stoked attention and eager support four years later; its success subsequently eclipsed by Fire. 2015 saw the band release a collection of remixes from songs out of their previous two offerings and the striking 7″inch single A Waltz For Unity & Love / New Destination. In hindsight, the latter was a definite tease of the new growth in sound and songwriting of vocalist/guitarist Stratos, bassist Giannis, and drummer Geo, who has left the band since the album’s recording; hints now impressively realised in Your Kingdom, My Life.

In some ways, the Three Way Plane sound has actually slimmed down its rich array of textures and flavours into something less overwhelming but more concentrated on its qualities, a sign of maturity easy to embrace. As opener Inner Warfare shows though it is still a web of styles and imagination which leaves predictability looking elsewhere for a home. The track initially waves a sonic lure in front of the listener, the guitar almost taunting before a couple more breaths sees rhythms strolling through ears with a knowing swagger as riffs sculpt their dance.  That first slither of post punk bait returns to tempt as the song slows a touch to welcome the expression shaped vocals of Stratos. Simultaneously Giannis’ bass grumbles with a throaty growl, riffs again casting an eager scrubbing of the senses as Geo’s beats tenaciously swing at a body and imagination swiftly hooked by the song’s mix of indie rock and punk at times reminding of UK band Houdini.

It is a superb start soon matched by the more crazed and caustic exploits of No, I’m Not Sober. Again the bass is an irresistible lure, showing more mischief than attitude this time, a matching hue directing riffs and vocals as the track swings between revelry and hostility. There is a definite feel of The Cure and their Three Imaginary Boys entrance upon the world, an additional off-kilter and magnetic discordance in tone and touch which lights ears and personal instincts. With the guest manipulation of Kostis Maloutas on the Theremin extra pleasure, the track eventually makes way for the matching excellence of A Waltz For Unity & Love. Straight away guitars entice ears, courting attention with their weave of wiry hooks and flirtatious melodies. Darker hues come into play soon after as the track hits its vigorous stride as vocals share lyrical suggestion though it is the snare of flirtatious hooks and energy which rubber stamps an already done deal between song and pleasure.

Guitars and bass again make the first flirtation with ears as Get Off Your Hands steps forward, its more shadowy nature and physical trespasses infested with fiery melodies and infectious rhythms which respectively wind through and steer the enjoyable ship. There is that post punk essence again at play but more vocal within the following Xepiasakos Theme, an instrumental cruising in on a great Gang Of Four like dexterity in its rhythmic prowess which immediately has body and spirit dancing. The piece is a touch more reserved than its predecessors but a livelier persistence impossible to refuse or let physical reactions leave alone. Musically the song also reminds of eighties bands like Leitmotiv and French outfit Modèle Martial, an array of essences cast into a sonic Three Way Plane kaleidoscope which certainly has a great spicing of nostalgia.

With a similar eighties spicing to its seduction of catchiness and challenges, Checkmate is simply infection from start to finish; guitar hooks and brooding bass lures a devious incitement infesting limb and imagination with viral expertise while the following Silent embraces the senses in a more atmospheric wash of sound though it too does not skimp on addictive snares and seriously catchy twists. That raw ethereal climate solely takes over midway though, a sonic drifting across the imagination with an underlying tempestuousness which grows as shadows blossom. Once more The Cure come to minds at certain moments, the song more reflective of their second and third album period while again creating a proposal individual to the Greek outfit.

The more caustic and volatile essences of other songs has its head for Your Life ’08, the track an abrasive slice of hardcore shaped punk but with a rhythmic agitation and tenacity which ensures an infectious bullying of ears and lively thoughts is welcomed.

The album closes with Psychic Changes, a rich trespass of vocal dissent and sonic intrigue spun with a tide of gripping hooks and predacious rhythms into a melodic labyrinth growing darker and more ravenous with every layer spun. As the previous track, it is more of a challenge than earlier propositions, more of a slow burner but ultimately emerges as one of the most striking quests from the imagination and craft of Three Way Plane.

There are times when the body really feels like a puppet to Your Kingdom, My Life, unable to escape its infection carrying incitements, and never a moment when pleasure is not the fuel of the day. Whether the album will see Three Way Plane break into international attention time will tell, it has all the attributes, but it will certainly establish the band as one of most exciting adventures waiting their moment.

Your Kingdom, My Life is out now and available @ https://threewayplane.bandcamp.com/album/your-kingdom-my-life

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Pete RingMaster 31/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright