Vovkulaka – Self Titled

Having recently devoured an EP featuring four of their fan’s favourite tracks, there could only be one next port of call and that was the self-titled debut album from Ukrainian metallers Vovkulaka. If that introduction to the band impressed and excited then we can only say that this twelve track release had us lusting for the striking sounds and rousing songs it held.

Emerging in 20914, Vovkulaka (Ukrainian for werewolf) is primarily the solo project of Odessa based vocalist/drummer/songwriter VolK but an adventure also featuring members from Bulgaria and the United States with Stone of metallers Contortion providing guitar and its stage line-up up completed by dancers and percussionists Naya G and JuleZ, and guitarist Ivan Manoloff. Vovkulaka creates a voracious sound bred in the heart of industrial and nu metal but one embracing a host of other flavours such as gothic metal and dubstep. Like a fusion of Fear Factory, Korn, Slipknot, Society 1, Type O Negative and Rob Zombie it grips attention but with an individuality which ensures it boldly stands out from anything else. Lyrically VolK’s inspiration and invention finds its seeds in his passion for ghost hunting and the paranormal experiences found as well as more personal issues; shadows and darkness sought and embraced to immerse the listener in the most compelling encounters.

Produced by Darian Rundall (Pennywise, Suicidal Tendencies, Yellowcard), the album immediately had the senses and psyche hooked with its opener, Summon The Demon. The brief track is a rhythmic calling, VolK revealing his percussive skill and manipulation as carnivorously haunting beats conjure an atmosphere from darker realms. It may barely be a bidding escaping a minute but proves an irresistible invitation leading to the equally ravening haunting of Cemetery Voices. Crawling over ears and senses, the track is a heavy but compelling trespass but one already a lively threat through the skittish percussion of VolK around his rapaciously slow vocal drawl. The similarly sinister lures of guitar and electronics only add to the captivation quickly bred, the track a sign if mere hint of things to come.

Darkness Calling follows with again a rhythmic tempting which burrowed under the skin. Electronic fingering and the sonic courting of guitar brings shadows and ears together, the Korn-esque flames of the latter lighting up the earthier but no less infectious declaration from VolK’s voice. The track is superb, its senses grinding grooves and dubstep throbbing swift addiction and quickly matched in potency by the even more esurient intent and drama of My Devil. Keys gently entice with a crepuscular sheen before the track erupts in another ravenous incitement, again psyche burrowing grooves leading the way as raptorial rhythms pounce. The contrast of crystalline electronics and musical predation simply gripped attention, all the while rhythms jabbing and stalking with manipulative animation as gut bred vocals magnetically nagged; a dubstep solo from DJ Gigantor from the band Evol Intent extra creative flesh to feast upon.

Emerging from a calm if again minatory caress Defy enslaved ears in its tenebrous realm; defiance and decay embroiled at the heart of its visceral grumble as it wormed deeper and deeper under the skin through raw-boned but rich grooves and provocatively niggling rhythms. With Volk’s cadaverous vocals ever enthralling, the track easily gripped and inspired the imagination before Priest Hole unleashed its own addictive fall from grace. VolK’s rhythms alone ruptured attention, their deeply probing bait aligned to scurrilous but rousing grooves and the illuminated eeriness of keys. The track quickly made a stake for best track acclaim though quickly challenged by the decayed and vicious malevolence of Death Ground. Nefarious grooves wind around ears as corrupt rhythms surround sinful vocals, the result one glorious ungodly delight.

The band’s acclaimed first single is next, Glory To The Heroes a track breaching ears and keen support across the globe with its release in 2018. Featuring Keith Lynch (Bill Ward Band, Ozzy Osbourne) on guitar and dedicated to Ukrainian soldier Nadiya Savchenko who was jailed in Russia but released in May 2016, the track quickly revealed why it made such a strong impact before, savage riffs and punishing rhythms perfectly set against light shimmering keys and melodic seduction as Fear Factory meets Pitchshifter like industrial discontent corrupts the air.

As the contagious venom and dexterity of Whispered Lies seduced as it invaded and Purple Door writhed and crawled into body and psyche with flesh-eating grooves across bone resonating percussion, the album shared further aspects to the Vovkulaka darkness and sound. The latter is something akin to Korn being violated by Godflesh as angels caress the carcass while The Dark Empty chews on the listener’s emotional flesh with rabid jaws coaxed by feral grooves and maniacal rhythms as VolK’s vocals again direct the rich pleasure.

The album closes with a metal version of the Ukrainian National Anthem though the CD also offers a couple of bonus tracks in a drum solo enhanced Darkness Calling and an instrumental version of Defy.

Vovkulaka is a band which should, if any of the references we suggested to their unique presence appeals, no must, be checked out but be warned such their debut album’s dark triumph there will be no turning back.

The Vovkulaka album is available now across most online stores.

https://vovkulaka.com/   https://www.facebook.com/VovkulakaFanPage   https://twitter.com/VovkulakaMusic

Pete RingMaster 15/03/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Vovkulaka: Introducing the Darkside…

“Tortured cries from the supernatural haunt the punishing mystical metal of Ukraine’s Vovkulaka. The band’s singer-drummer-songwriter VolK is a dark conduit for paranormal activity and channels his explorations in this realm into his band’s tribal and occultist thrashings.”

We have borrowed the opening paragraph to our introduction to Vovkulaka to bring ours to you as it provides an echo to the feel and breath which pervades the band’s striking sound. With their self-titled album infesting a world already devoured by darkness, we share big thanks to Rhonda at Whiplash PR for an invitation to explore a four track EP featuring the favourite tracks of the band’s fans. It reveals a sound which devours the senses and twists the psyche whilst unleashing catchiness as carnivorous as the multi-flavoured metal fuelling it.

The creation of vocalist/drummer/songwriter VolK, Vovkulaka (Ukrainian for werewolf) rose up in 2014. Primarily based in Odessa, the band also features members from Bulgaria and the United States, on stage the line-up completed by dancers and percussionists Naya G and JuleZ, and guitarist Ivan Manoloff. With his lyrical inspiration seeded in his passion for ghost hunting and paranormal experiences, VolK (itself Russian for werewolf) casts a sound bred from a voracious fusion of industrial and nu metal with goth and dubstep though that still does not quite reveal all of its rich tapestry. Listening to the quartet of songs making up this EP, thoughts of bands such as Fear Factory, Korn, Society 1, Type O Negative and Rob Zombie come to mind yet it is a rousing trespass which swiftly and firmly slams down its own individuality and unique character.

Darkness Calling is the first track to harass our ears, its opening enough to grip attention and appetite with its great Jonathan Davis and co like scenting, one continuing to permeate the track as it entangles VolKs throat rasping vocals with the similarly predacious sounds around them. Equally his rhythms stalk the listener and even as the song contorts and invades with greater imagination, its infectiousness is virulent just as that of Defy.

The second track to embroil our ears is a visceral grumble with a raptorial groove to match, one spiralling under the skin into the psyche in no time. Even with again instinctive contagiousness to voice and sound, there is a cadaverous sense and decay to its weight and touch which only accentuated the almost brutal temptation on offer.

The other pair of tracks only compounds the persuasion and striking presence of Vovkulaka, Purple Door a ravenous crawl through ears with a haunting melody and flesh-eating grooves which wind around ears until another feral infection loaded chorus not that the passage to it is anything less than viral. Its successor, My Devil coaxes with sinister melodic intimation before swinging its eagerly welcomed ruinous grooves and a body of sound which got into every pore, its electronics alone pure manipulation only accentuated by the voracious trespass of vocals, guitar and rhythms.

Though only a taster of Vovkulaka and that earlier mentioned album, we swiftly and hungrily only wanted to be swarmed by much more of the seriously rousing pestilence and there is every chance you will want to be too.

Check out Vovkulaka further @ https://vovkulaka.com/   https://www.facebook.com/VovkulakaFanPage   https://twitter.com/VovkulakaMusic

Pete RingMaster 12/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Enoch – Killing Starts Where Hate Begins

Originally released digitally back in 2018, Killing Starts Where Hate Begins from Enoch gets a deserved reboot this month through Soundmass, It’s return brings an additional new track and a gem of a live cut with it and if you missed it the first time around, we can declare the six track treat the perfect way to discover the potential soaked, ear grabbing sound and presence of the New Zealand band.

Formed in 2016, the Auckland hailing outfit fuse essences of groove, nu and alternative metal with their darker, predacious flavours for a keenly individual sound. It is a proposition which trespasses the senses whilst igniting the imagination. Part barbarous and part seductive with every attack between involved, as their EP proves, it is a proposal which crosses the familiar and unique to present something hard to ignore.

EP opener, Pieces, immediately demanded attention, the rapier like swings of drummer Ross Curtain landing with contempt as the song forcibly stirs with the bass of John Brodie beginning its grievous grumble. That alone has us more than attentive and with increasing focus as the guitar of Micheal Germon began unwinding its sonic wiring. Out the senses challenging start, rousing grooves wind around ears before, within a breath or two, the melodic tones of Lorraine Brodie complete the creative palette as the track’s imagination really takes off. It continues to prowl, severely growl, and harass but equally weaves a deviously infectious tempting which is echoed in the dual styled vocals of Lorraine.

It is an excellent start to the release which Reasons Why continues as it uncages its own twin personality of senses demeaning threat and eagerly fertile enterprise. Through her continually twisting and magnetic delivery Lorraine left her potent mark yet again, a highly pleasing incitement matched by the ever writhing grooves and the intense growling of the bass. Fair to say the track swiftly got under the skin before Stranger powerfully strides in springing more of the band’s ear devouring grooves. Bass and drums again unite in a quickly addictive provocation, the former’s low guttural snarl especially inflaming instinctive pleasure before guitar and voice weaved their melodic captivation around it. Germon’s basal growl easily fits with and contrasts the ever fertile delivery of Lorraine, his guitar casting acerbic lines just as rousing as the track reveals a new depth and adventure in sound and writing.

Loner provides more of the same in its own original way, contorting the air with its grooves as Lorraine provides vocal gymnastics with her throat backed by Germon’s voracious roar, every word and syllable either caressed or abused by her agility alone as guitar and bass again emulate the oral gyration with their own particular dexterity. With beats whipping the senses throughout, it too left a thickly pleasing mark while Bow and Be Devoured from its melancholic melodic start builds a steeled woven latticework of craft and imagination, one which preys on insecurities as much as it hugs them.

With Reason Why revisited for a live moment with the band, an example why their stage performance has earned them a potent reputation, Killing Starts Where Hate Begins simply left us hungry for more and eager to share the word.

Certainly there is still more to find in originality and imagination within their sound but Enoch already are a fresh breath for the metal scene and surely destined to be embraced far further afield than their homeland.

Killing Starts Where Hate Begins is out now via Soundmass.

https://www.facebook.com/enoch.nz

Pete RingMaster 28/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

The Krueggers – Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories

If you are going to unapologetically wear your influences on your musical sleeve you are going to need plenty more to tempt to step out from the crowd. Brazilian outfit The Krueggers have and do just that, it all in compelling evidence within new album Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories. It offers a collection of tracks which proudly blossom from the seeds of their easy to hear inspirations but swiftly stamp down their own identity and uniqueness with relish.

Emerging back in 2011, The Krueggers drew on firm influences which surrounded its founders, vocalist/rhythms guitarist Randy Fiora and bassist Rikke Galla, as they grew up for their fusion of grunge and nu metal. The likes of Nirvana, Sepultura, Alice in Chains, Korn, Soundgarden, Marilyn Manson, and Stone Temple Pilots are all listed amongst their inspirations, a diverse mix which you can firmly feel within their broadly flavoured new release. Though the band released On Your Hands back in 2013, the impressive Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories, following their signing with Eclipse Records, is their first official full-length and a seriously striking introduction to the Guarulhos hailing band it is.

It is no lie to say, that the album had us eagerly attentive in quick time through opener Lying Machine. The track just gripped from its first breath, sirens drawing its intrigue to ears as Galla’s bass raised its throbbing growl. The guitars of Randy Fiora and lead Rafael Fiora quickly offer their bait before dirty riffs accentuated the threat and tempting, Anthony Juno’s swinging beats only increasing the manipulation as the band reveals its Korn-esque instincts with the bass continuing to share a delicious throbbing groove as the track almost taunted ears with its prowling seduction.

It is an outstanding start to the album and remained our favourite moment though fair to say the likes of the following Freak Out certainly hit the spot. A gravelly hard rock spicing brings the track forward; a touch of Gruntruck meets Seether adding to its initial lure and the subsequent infectious stroll it offers for ears and vocal chords to jump upon.  With its dirty breath and spiralling guitar enterprise, the song easily got under the skin, that earthy tone of the bass again a magnetic essence before Dark Parade engages the imagination in its heavy, steely trespass. Like a fusion of early Mudvayne and Skinyard, it crawls across the senses as rhythms take their bite before uncaging a truly virulent chorus which just accentuates another irresistible moment within the release.

A definite Nirvana seeding shapes the enthralling body of next up Someday, the song maybe not unique but highly captivating as its reveals its breeding and invention while Overreaction uncages a garage punk/ grunge bred irritability which infests word and metal nurtured enterprise. Both had ears and appetite gripped but still found themselves eclipsed by the magnificent Bullshit, it too grouchy and uncompromising but around a waspish groove which nagged as it seared the senses to offer abuse and flirtation in equal measure; another major highlight of Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories stamped down.

In some ways the latter part of the album did not quite ignite the passions as what came before had yet as the Stone Temple Pilots tinted heavy metal coated and increasingly addictive I Set Myself and Wrong with its grunge croon upon an intimation soaked melodic web as well as the album’s heavily weighted and skilfully fiery title track proved, all left a lingering impact and lure to go again and again.

Bring Me Shine completes Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories, its acoustically set and melodically woven body a tapestry of adventure and temptation within an emotionally and physically volatile body. It is a fine end to an album which immediately impressed and has only made a greater impact by the listen; a triumph which surely will wake up the world outside of Brazil to The Krueggers.

Hysterical Cold Side and Dark Memories is out now via Eclipse Records.

http://krueggers.com   https://www.facebook.com/the.krueggers   https://twitter.com/thekrueggers

Pete RingMaster 27/01/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Crostpaths – Self Titled EP

The eagerness of people to push forward UK metallers Crostpaths for attention has raised a certain intrigue and now with the release of their self-titled debut EP, it is easy to understand. It is a highly promising and more importantly thickly enjoyable introduction to the Kent Hailing outfit and easy to expect the fuel to further and greater interest in their potent sound.

Formed a year ago, Crostpaths take the inspirations of bands such as Linkin Park, Skindred, and Papa Roach to their nu-metalcore tagged sound and it is the latter of the trio which most comes to mind across the EP’s three tracks. Even so there is plenty to their music which is refreshingly unique as it is familiar and as it evolves its true identity over time and maturity you can only see the former being the overbearing hue.

The EP opens with Pariah, teasing and taunting with the song’s initially set back bait before standing toe to toe with ears and thrusting rapacious riffs and tenacious rhythms through them. The crossover character of the band’s sound shapes the track’s first engagement, groove and alternative metal building its second manoeuvre as the lead vocals of Ritchie Murray Jack ably backed by those of bassist Owain Lewis prowl and pounce. Pitchshifter styled electronics equally add to the tempest of textures and temptation, the predacious breath of the song armoured by the eclectic web of sound which emerges in individual design across the EP.

If the first track had a bit of a Spineshank meets Papa Roach roar the following Meridian (Aftermath) finds an Emmure/The Kennedy Soundtrack like scent to its equally adventurous roar. There is a calmer melodic air to the song than its predecessor in some ways, Crostpaths exploring their more progressive post metal side but still there are moments when the song snarls and the band’s sound bites.

Bulldozer is the EP’s final offering, a cankerous slab of aggressively antagonistic metal with a combined Rage Against The Machine/Nonpoint resembling ferocity. Brief, taking no prisoners, it is a stirring end to an impressive first uprising with Crostpaths and we hope the first of many more rousing encounters.

The Crostpaths EP is out November 29th.

https://www.facebook.com/crostpaths     https://www.twitter.com/crostpaths   https://www.instagram.com/crostpathsmusic

Pete RingMaster 28/11/2019

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Abstract Rapture – Hollow Motion

Formed in 2001, Luxembourg hailing metallers Abstract Rapture especially drew praise with the release of their album Earthcrush. Now seven years after its successful release and “significant” line-up changes the band have its successor primed to re-stir attention and such the craft and enterprise within Hollow Motion it is easy to see the quintet courting the biggest spotlights and plaudits.

Woven in a tapestry of metal bred flavours courting everything from groove and nu to death and thrash metal, the band’s sound and new album is a cauldron of adventure and imagination embracing the familiar and unique. Hollow Motion is a dark melancholic proposition yet a beast with a discontent fuelled fire in its belly and attitude nurtured tension in its breath.

The album opens with A Promise from the Ghouls and immediately lured ears with its rhythmic invitation, the teasing collusion of infectious beats with a dark earthy bass grumble devious. Swiftly the predacious edge of the guitar joins the threat, it all soon sparking into a rapacious stroll further accentuated by the potent tones of Dritt. The swinging grooves and continually intimidating edge of the track made for a compelling and infectious proposal unafraid to twist and turn with further imagination and creative trespassing sparked by the melodic and sonic prowess of guitarists Alex and Nol. It is an ear and appetite grabbing start to the album which continues through next up The Cancer in Your Soul.

The second track is instantly a more predatory proposal, almost stalking the senses even as melodic and grungier hues spring forward from within its ill-intent. Individual craft joins united endeavour as the song blossoms with each adventurous move, it maybe not as strikingly manipulative as its predecessor but just as imaginatively captivating before Endless Chapter grips ears with its own wily exploits. Again the swings of Spit incite as they bite, nagging grooves entangling his tenacious strikes as vocals incite. Across the album there is an essence of Mudvayne meets Disturbed meets Machine Head and no more so than within this gripping offering.

Blood-Red Revolt brought even stronger enticement and incitement to body and pleasure, the track a definite favourite, writhing as it fingers the imagination with its boisterously manipulative and widely flavoursome antics before, following the brief chillingly haunting and increasingly threatening lead of …and Winter Comes, the predacious Inner Plague prowls and teasing the senses with its own venomous but darkly seductive threat. As ever the tenebrific yet tempting growl of Maks’ bass fuels the alluring menacing; constantly keeping the listener on their toes alongside the drums even as melodic flames and enterprise blazes away.

From one outstanding moment to another as Venom Skies descends on the senses with intrusively skittish beats to the fore before its sonic spiral springs another web of riveting and toxic conspiracy built on craft and imagination. The swing of the track is inescapable, its resourceful weave innovative even as familiar hues add to its appealing canvas.

Through the simply invigorating deeds of The Fear Industry and the calmer but similarly enticing Hollow Soul, ears were only firmly held; both tracks and especially the first of the pair offering snares of sound and touch which left us simply greedy for more before Ego Non Te Absolvo (A Drunken Conclusion) brought the album to a destructively intimate and provocative close.

It is a fascinating, tormented end to an album which is almost intense in its dark tone whilst bordering the kaleidoscopic in a sound which still embraces a particular hue that is individual to Abstract Rapture. Hollow Motion will be an introduction to a great many even being the band’s third full-length, one announcing  Abstract Rapture to all as being one striking and thrilling proposition.

Hollow Motion is out now, distributed by Black N ‘Purple Records, across most stores.

https://www.facebook.com/pg/abstractrapture/

Pete RingMaster 18/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Phoenix Rising – Ignite

Just a number of months into their existence, it is fair to say that Phoenix Rising is already creating a real stir with their rousing sound; their praise drawing presence and suggested success in the “Best New Artist and Best Metal Band awards at this year’s MXD MAG Rock and Metal Awards evidence. Plenty of reasons for the buzz around them are now clear to be heard in their debut EP, Ignite. Offering four slices of rap rock infused with nu metal, the release is an ear grabbing, potential soaked introduction bred on imagination and creative energy.

Emerging from an ad vocalist Kent Summerour posted on Craigslist, the Dallas hailing band arose to swiftly grab local attention, in turn quickly finding broader landscapes to impress. With the two prong vocal attack of Summerour and Scott Lathwood in front of the invention of guitarist Lee Deane, bassist Allan Kurt, drummer James Espinoza, and Mark Ridlen on synths, Phoenix Rising embrace the inspirations of bands such as Hollywood Undead, Skillet, Papa Roach, Killswitch Engage, Union Underground, Linkin Park and more. The latter is probably the one which most comes to mind across their first release but adding to rather than deflecting from the band’s already evolving into individual sound.

Ignite opens up with Do You Know, a piano drawing ears as rhythms rustle together in the background. Soon the track is fully to the fore, not forceful but certainly magnetic as synth and guitar cradle the rap and following clean vocal persuasion. Though it suggests it might, the song never quite explodes into the hinted furor but persistently entices with melodic caresses, vocal dexterity, and a mercurial rhythmic attack.

It is a potent start laying down a strong reason to stay involved with the EP with drama which is soon escalated within the following If I Say No. Immediately there is a more intensive feel and muscle to the song, metal essences lining its composed but impassioned roar. Once more Summerour and Lathwood create a great web of vocal attack and temptation matched by the hooks and melodic enterprise of their companions. As with its predecessor, it is hard to say that major surprises crossed ears yet neither did predictability or a lack of fresh imagination.

Open You Up continues the EP’s trait of building on the song before with bigger and bolder endeavour; the track a tenacious metal infused rock holler mercurial in its breath, persistent in its rousing incitement before easily the best track of the four descends on the passions. Lights Out immediately throws a thick rhythmic coaxing out so easy to jump upon; an initial shuffle before the main event which erupts and incites like a mix of Union Underground and Powerman 5000. Virulent in its hooks and traps, aggressive in its energy and dynamics, the superb track is brief, explosive, and reason enough alone to breed a hungry appetite for the band’s sound.

Ignite is the kind of debut you just have to pay attention to and anticipate bigger and bolder adventures springing from as the band grows, matures, and their sound finds its unique voice. The fuss around them already means Phoenix Rising will have plenty to live up to but the EP and especially its final track suggests they are more than ready or the challenge.

Ignite is out now @ https://www.phoenixrisingofficial.com/shop and other stores.

https://www.facebook.com/PhoenixRisingOfficial/   https://twitter.com/PRofficialband

Pete RingMaster 02/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright