4 Past Midnight – Life On The Inside

a1760687046_2

It has not been an easy ride for Scottish punks 4 Past Midnight over the couple of decades the band has been creating prime genre provocation but thankfully the determination of the Glasgow quartet, though severely tested at times, has emerged victorious meaning we get to be buffeted and thrilled by the likes of their new album Life On The Inside. A thumping riot of grouchy punk rock and bruising rock ‘n’ roll, the fifteen track release is an exciting onslaught of passion and aggression which clearly shows 4 Past Midnight as still one of the most respected as well as recognised inventive bands within British punk.

Formed in 1989, the band was soon under strong attention and responses with their first release, the ten track Start Of The Liberation demo of 1990. Well received it led to live performances around Scotland leading up to the 1992 released Smash The Front. Again the album was keenly received and responded to but gigs were becoming harder to come by for the band, a situation which continued in both aspects with Pain, Greed And Death the following year. Acclaim was again garnered by the release but shows were scarce to put it mildly, a problem which remained as the likes of the 15 track cassette Midnight Escapades, the Get A Life single and EP The Fears We Hide were unveiled to greater attention over the next couple of years but no one seemed to want to put the band on in venues. At this point the band called it a day but renewed interest in their music saw them return in 1998 under the name Trickshot. The name change was not received well and the band reverted to their original title with The Ruff Demo and The Best And The Worst Of 4pm following, and for a while more shows promisingly did materialise but debut CD Jesus Christ Its 4pm Again in 1999 followed the earlier pattern, eagerly received but gigs came to a crawl.

2002 saw the band link up with Stu of S.T.P for a last charge on the punk scene. The Mental Ward EP and Trials And Tribulations ‎continued to gain success as did the Punkology compilation of 2008 though the 2006 SOS Records British Invasion Fest and a tour of the East Coast of the US with The Angst led to less unhappy experiences with the latter seeing the band fall apart whilst the release of their Guilty As Charged album never happened as the label went bust. Slipping forward slightly to 2011 and again through fan pressures and wants, vocalist/drummer Peter linked up with fellow band original rhythm guitarist Fred to have another assault on the scene with new members in bassist Stevie and lead guitarist Tam joining the band. The first result is the excellent Life On The Inside via STP Records, an album which leaves you breathless and hungry for much more.

The release storms from the blocks with the outstanding Broken. The track is an instant call of riffs and rhythmic temptation which expands into a hook cored slice of essential punk rock. The caustic enticement of the gravelly vocals and the infectious lure of the song are irresistible whilst the riffs scrub out an enslavement to compliment what is a deceptively familiar feel to the song. A lyrically emotive track which is like a mix of UK Subs, Angelic Upstarts, and Stiff Little Fingers in many ways, it makes for an immense start soon matched by the following Nightmare and its successor Any Other Way. The first is virulently contagious; its seduction starting from the first spirals of sonic engagement  and elevating through the catchy barbed hooks and bass prowling before the anthemic chorus locks in the passions and throws away the key. Snarling and confronting from its first aggressive note and syllable right through to its fiery finish, the track is the first of many pinnacles on the album. It is equally matched by the second of the two, the song a less antagonistic roar in the ear but one which still embroils feet, voice, and emotions in a riotous slice of punk rapaciousness.

The abrasive Crisis like Riot brawls with the ear next to again pleasing contagion soaked effect, though it does not quite match what came before and certainly falls before the might of next up Justified. The track creates another major highlight upon the album, riffs and drums building walls of addiction whilst the vocals climb their heights and senses with angry intent. A song about domestic abuse, it is a commanding punk ‘n’ roll provocateur with a furious energy which reminds of UK rockers Dirt Box Disco.

The album continues to exploit the already awakened passions through the likes of the outstanding Punk Rock Noise (4pm crew pt3), a track opening with a hook that is the close relation to that cast on Pretty Vacant and evolving into a ridiculously catchy terrace like anthem, the ferociously bruising Story Of My Life, and the dark compelling Hollie. The song about sexual abuse hits home hard whilst recruiting energies and emotions into another unmistakable potent triumph to follow predecessor, the more than decent Nothing Has Changed. All tracks stand out with individual character and passionate craft, though every song to be fair can be wrapped in that descript, as shown by The Truth Is Out There, the song an insatiable riot springing from TV show The X-Files.

The tracks and quality keep coming thick and fast, the dirty rock seeded attack of Trapped and the old school punk bred The Fight plundering the emotions to ignite another dose of rapture whilst What You Gonna Do has an Sham 69 oi snarl to its thumping rock ‘n’ roll confrontation to continue the cementing of Life On The Inside deep into the heart.

Bringing the release to an incendiary finale, Who Takes The Blame and How Does It Feel ignite ears and emotions with their ferocious riff driven anthemic persuasions, the first through another heavy slice of punk brutality sculpted with precise craft, epidemic hooks and rhythmic tension, and the closing track with its straight forward stomp of infection clad dirty rock ‘n’ roll.

4 Past Midnight has set loose one of the punk triumphs of this year, the last and maybe as far back as their previous attack. Life On The Inside is a gem you cannot help missing away from its muscular incitement and a band you all should petition local venues for to get them tearing up your town.

http://4pastmidnight.co.uk/

9/10

RingMaster 18/10/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com

Mono Inc. : Nimmermehr

     MONO INC._Bandfoto

     Nimmermehr sees German rockers Mono Inc. follow last year’s acclaimed and successful album After The War with another slab of expansive gothic rock that takes the listener on an eventful and thrilling ride of sound and adventure. It is an album which employs the essences of numerous eager styles and their dynamic devilry whilst creating a fun and ultimately pleasing romp of invention and imagination.

Formed around 2000-2001 by then drummer Martin Engler (moving to lead vocals in 2006), guitarist/vocalist Carl Fornia, and original vocalist Miky Mono, three musicians who had played together previously in  both Wild Thing and Mono 69, the Hamburg band soon built a strong reputation for their stadium rock type of gothic bred sound. Albums such as debut Head Under Water of 2003 and re-released a year later, Temple Of The Torn in 2007, and Pain, Love & Poetry the following year all earned the band strong attention and impressed responses. The previously mentioned After The War set the band upon another level of world awareness which the vibrant Nimmermehr (meaning Nevermore) will only cement. Released via NoCut Entertainment it is a collection of tracks which tease with unpredictability and persuade with open passion and distinct charm, the line-up of Engler and Fornia alongside bassist/vocalist Manuel Antoni, and drummer/vocalist Katha Mia creating a shadowed sun of melodic and atmospheric breath with darkly emotive and tantalisingly provocative enterprise.

Opening track Heile, Heile Segen instantly cups the ear in roaming keys and a romping bassline, guitars brewing a scratchy invitation MONO INC - Nimmermehr - Artworkwhilst the German sung vocals of Engler bask in the great electro embrace punctuated with a breath of elevated energy. It is an infectious stomp which seizes the senses from the first second and leads them into a potent dance of electro contagion and pop rock urgency guided irresistibly by not only the vocals of Engler but the teasing sultry tones of Mia alongside. Arguably there is nothing particularly new going on but when it sounds this good and enjoyable there is not issue to be raised, the song a great mix of Konstrust and Hanzel Und Gretyl.

The following Seligkeit continues the great start, its muscular electro pulses a potent incitement going hand in hand with the cracking beats of Mia which vein the magnetic weave and drama of the keys, they driven hard by the sinewy riffs which spark up in mini crescendos throughout. As in its predecessor the vocals are a warm hug within the sturdy presence of sound, the combination an incendiary call for the passions. Again as the first song and across plenty of the album, there is a familiarity at seductive work which whilst pointing to an absence of ground-breaking ingenuity going on undoubtedly makes an imaginative use of existing and diverse rich spices.

The excellent My Deal With God is an irresistible anthem for the passions, the surprising seemingly Irish lilt to chorus and even the vocals at that moment just scintillating whilst the dynamic weave of melodic and electronic sound with a gothic emotive embrace, are pure virulent infection. A plea to limbs, voice (luckily it is sung in English to enable a full persuasion), and energy, it is an early major highlight of the album but just one in many as shown by the following Kein Weg Zu Weit with its sultry air and ambience washing a stern rhythmic pulse and evocative guitar narrative. As in evidence now the ability of the band to create choruses which resonate and ridiculously tempt is almost regal, this song a slow evocative walk with refined elegant twists as contagious as the riotous devilment of the previous song.

Both the outstanding Euthanasia and its mighty equal The Clock Ticks On cast accomplished fusions of symphonic winds within gothic rock expanses, the first a bewitching chalice of glowing melodies and enriching imagination whilst the second is a heavyweight stomp bringing the intensity of a Rammstein into the pop suasion of an Ace Of Base or Propaganda. It is a riveting melodically fuelled waltz smouldering with eastern mystique and driven by insatiable revelry, and in league with the first and the melancholic beauty that is Alles Was Bleibtnergetic which splits them, makes for another stunning stretch of triumph Nimmermehr.

The great gravel kissed vocals of Engler marks the impressive sorrowful croon of A Better Way To Die next whilst the invitingly busy lures of Herzschlag and the impossibly contagious Days Like This leave the senses and passions exhausted but invigorated, The third of the trio is a stirring and galvanic blaze of rock and pop. Like a union between Bryan Adams and the more pop spiced era of The March Violets, and much better than that sounds, the song is a fire of glorious anthemic enticement, quite irresistible and totally enslaving.

Completed by the electro rock pop provocation of Ich Teile Dich Nicht and the decent enough piano and vocal led title track, Nimmermehr is a powerful treat which shows no mercy in its capturing of the imagination and emotions. It is one of those bait loaded releases which simply leaves you full and basking in deep satisfaction.

www.mono-inc.com

9/10

RingMaster 09/08/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com