Fathoms – Counter Culture

Since the release of their first EP, Transitions back in 2012, the Fathoms sound has evolved as its line-up has equally changed and been revitalised. What has not changed is their ability to grab ears and attention and stir fresh new appetites for their inventive sound. New album Counter Culture is testament to that, its nine tracks a blazing roar and creative aggravation which captivates and gets the blood rushing through aggression pulsing veins.

The UK outfit soon sparked keen local attention with their melodic hardcore sound upon emerging in 2010 and quickly found themselves touring the UK and sharing stages with the likes of Legend, Set Your Goals, Polar, Dividing The Silence, Final Crisis, and Napoleon. Acclaim did not exactly hang around either especially once Transitions assaulted ears with their reputation taking another spurt with its successor Cold Youth in 2013. Both were bold and viciously imposing with a growing potential which blossomed within their Artery Recordings released debut album Lives Lived two years later. Hitting the USA, China, South Korea and Japan among regular jaunts across Britain and Europe, the Brighton hailing quintet has become a potent element in the UK hardcore scene.

Hindsight suggests the hints and clues were already there, certainly within the last album, but Fathoms’ sound has embraced greater metalcore traits over the past couple of years, the band straddling both styles with their punk metal furnace, and as Counter Culture reveals there is plenty more to that blend also. It opens up with Hate Preach, making a composed introduction as vocalist Max Campbell hits ears with his rap before the guitars of James Munn and Sam Rigden cast a persistent tide of abrasive riffs. It is a great start which only continues as the song merges nu and rap metal exploits with hardcore antagonism framed by the biting beats of drummer Lui Sarabia.

The potent starts quickly has ears keenly attentive, recent single Counter Culture stirring their appetites further with its metal bred imagination and punk infused quarrel. Melodic twists and clean vocal union with the rawer snarling tones of Campbell brings richer intrigue and captivation, the bass of Steve Cogden prowling it all with a brooding menace as the song grows an increasingly compelling web of flavours and imagination.

Latest video single B.E.L.I.E.V.E quickly follows; its body a heavier, dirtier, and more tempestuous proposal but just as content and skilled in contrasting its dark hues with melodic flames and harmonic enterprise. For personal tastes, it does not quite catch the imagination as its predecessor or other tracks within the album yet there is no denying its lures, especially its inescapably magnetic melodic.

Counter Culture is an album which seems to get bigger and bolder song by song, definitely each subsequent song made a greater thrilling impression on our appetites; the process continued at this point by the surly metal nurtured, ill-natured Fated. Its nu and rap metal dexterity gets right under the skin but equally its synth rock and punk spicing teases more impressed reactions before I’ve Been Trying To Leave exposes the band’s similarly adept progressive inclinations within its cantankerous character and imposing touch. It also has catchiness in its lighter side which is pop kissed but never more than a warm wash upon the instinctive ruggedness and spiky imagination of the band’s sound.

The calmer waters of Slip Away provides a new beguiling turn within the release, its presence like a more belligerent Silent Descent but with passages of pure melodic beauty around more volatile instincts and endeavour. It is just one more captivating moment within the album but soon eclipsed by the outstanding assault of The Spaces In Between. A trap of nu-metal design, the song twists and turns with dervish like mania and pugnacious attitude, the guitars dancing venomously on ears as the bass and vocals growl. In the midst of that inventive confrontation though, a spring of melodic and harmonic adventure flows, again Fathoms showing the new adventure in their sound and freshness in their imagination.

Next up No Compromise is an even moodier proposal; to be honest a truculent trespass of a song but one coloured with atmospheric grace as melodic suggestion weaves its bait for ears and imagination to embrace. With every passing second and unpredictable idea, the song grows in strength and impressiveness; pleasure joining the ascent until it departs to allow You Ain’t On What We On to bring things to a close.

The final track is a surge of punk dispute; an eye to eye combat which has the body bouncing and spirit raising its middle finger to the world. It is a fine end to an encounter which grows with every listen. Fathoms have maybe still to realise all that early potential but instead they have explored a whole new sphere of ideas and as Counter Culture proves, they are on a journey still easy to anticipate and enjoy.

Counter Culture is released December 1st.

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Pete RingMaster 30/11/2017

City Of Ashes – Rise

City Of Ashes_RingMasterReview

Making a big impression with their well-received debut album back in 2013, UK alternative rock band City Of Ashes now release its successor Rise; an encounter easy to imagine finding an equal if not bigger success. Consisting of eleven heart bred and melodically provocative tracks, the album confirms and pushes on the promise of predecessor All We Left Behind. In some ways, the band’s sound has not made any major leaps from the last album, or the EP before it, yet there is an open new maturity to songwriting and the bolder emotive imagination involved which alone grabs attention.

Since forming in 2009 and releasing the Then There Was A Hand In The Darkness EP, with All We Left Behind swiftly following, City Of Ashes has played all across the UK, sharing stages with the likes of Skindred, Exit Ten, Polar, Shadows Chasing Ghosts, Fei Comodo, Hildamay, and Young Guns along the way. Subsequent performances on their tour with Trapt only enhanced a reputation already ripe through their first album. Now it is the self-released Rise about to lure fresh attention the way of the Eastbourne quartet; an aim, as suggested earlier, easy to see succeeding to some potent degree.

Uprising is first up and swiftly lays an evocative melodic caress on ears as darker hues bring just as alluring shadows. The impressive vocals of Orion Powell quickly add their prowess backed by great band harmonies. The track is only a brief lure into the album but an attention grabbing one setting up the appetite for the following Vipers Nest. A sonic web of hooks and riffs descend on the senses first as the firm beats of Dan Russell make a thick impact with the brooding bass line of Dan Frederick in close attention. Soon bound in the melodic enterprise of James Macdonald and coloured by the expressive tones of Powell, the song easily catches the imagination with a touch of Placebo meets Manic Street Preachers to its broader alternative rock character.

RISE Artwork_RingMasterReviewBoth Battles Of My Youth and Walk Away keep the strong start going; the first with its anthemic roar and intimate tone amidst vocal and melodic suggestiveness whilst the second shares even more intensive angst in its melancholic cry. Again Powell impresses; the drama of his delivery an emotive flame within the more subdued but no less enticing rhythms and the creative adventure of Macdonald’s fingers on strings.

A delicious brooding bassline and core riff marks out Bittersweet next, that and a climatic feel to its emotional and sonic intensity, whilst Save Me carries a lively simmer to its bubbly melodies and crisp beats to equally grip ears and appetite. Whether there are any major surprises within the songs and indeed album can be argued, but each offering has something fresh and imaginative to its character and invention which draws attention easily as here or greedily as by the outstanding Iliad. Unstoppably emerging the album’s favourite track, it is a haunted and darkly lit proposal with a slow prowl as portentous as it is inviting. Matching his surroundings, Powell’s voice also ebbs and flows in raw emotion as rhythms and riffs border on stalking the senses. Provocative theatre in the ears, the song simply steals the show.

Bloodlust has a similarly hued nature to its canvas but a far lighter and vivacious air to its emotive outpouring and subsequent fiery expulsions whilst Sometimes provides a croon fuelled by apprehensive words and emotions cradled in orchestral like melodic sensitivity. Both songs keep enjoyment high before Confessions raises the album’s game again with its earnest roar.

Closing with the sober but potent sharing of the heart that is We Own The Night, band and album leaves pleasure a strong reaction to its imaginative and tenacious endeavours. Rise is a strong continuation of the band’s previous releases, if not a dramatic leap forward. As suggested earlier though, it is a more rounded and mature adventure embracing all the already recognised City Of Ashes qualities and more; and their most impressive outing yet.

Rise is out now @ http://cityofashes.bigcartel.com/

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Pete RingMaster 25/03/2016

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Cold Summer – A Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire

Cold Summer_RingMaster Review

Though no doubt the band has been busy beavering away sharing their mighty roar of sound, it seems to have been a quiet time attention wise around UK post-hardcore quartet Cold Summer since the release of their impressive self-titled debut album of 2013. There will be no escaping their presence now though with the release of their fiercely rousing new video/single A Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire. A hint to the band’s upcoming new album Fight To Survive, the track recalls all the reasons the first album, and indeed earlier EP Wake, grabbed our ears whilst alone positioning the band upon a richer and loftier plateau of sound and invention.

Formed late 2011, the Leeds hailing band quickly began luring ears their way with two track acoustic EP, Transitions and the aforementioned Wake in the January and May of 2012 respectively. Offering a post hardcore sound which was eager to embrace melodic imagination to its aggressive snarl, the band also swiftly showed the DIY ethic which continues today. A leap in adventure fuelled their first album a year later whilst live the band again under their own steam booked a tour in support of it and a subsequent UK with He Is Legend in 2014. Over the years they have only increased their reputation as a band and live proposition with shows alongside the likes of Funeral For A Friend, Polar, Self Defense Family, Lemuria, Milk Teeth, Brawlers, Grieved, and Employed To Serve. Now to whet the appetite for their impending release, the band has uncaged their new single, a track which suggest that Cold Summer is poised to really stir up the European rock and post hardcore scene.

Cold Summer - A Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire_RingMaster ReviewA Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire instantly consumes ears in a spicy sonic enticement punctuated by the roving beats of drummer Justin Eastwood. The imagination is as swiftly enthralled, especially as the fine voice of Dan Feast entangles itself in the fascinating drama and contagious enterprise quickly flooding the track. Raw vocals squalls break out throughout to enjoyably contrast and challenge the blazing infectiousness seducing the emotions, they backed by the increasingly predacious hues cast by the bass of Chris Hepworth and the grouchy torrent of riffs springing from the strings of guitarist Chris Harrison from within his otherwise virulent and catchy fire of melodic imagination.

It is a superb maelstrom of imagination and thick enticement, a declaration of an already impressive band coming of age in songwriting, sound, and craft. Thoughts now are that 2016 is going to be a massive year for Cold Summer if Fight To Survive can match and build upon A Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire.

A Time Imagination Forgot To Inspire is released on Friday 19th February @ http://coldsummer.bandcamp.com/album/a-time-imagination-forgot-to-inspire

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Pete RingMaster 18/02/2016

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A Time To Hope – Full of Doubts

ATTH_RingMaster Review

    A Time To Hope is a French post hardcore band loaded with thick potential going by debut EP Full of Doubts, an encounter wearing familiar genre colours but equally offering a fresh creative confrontation that warrants attention. It is a sonically roaring introduction to their potent sound, a strong and tasty first glimpse of the Montpellier quintet and a strong base for them to leap on from.

Since forming towards the rear of 2014, A Time To Hope has earned praise and a healthy reputation through a live presence which has seen them play with bands such as POLAR, Light Your Anchors, and Zephyr 21 amongst many. Their first music video for the song Sweet T has also lured good attention which is now being increasingly courted by the Full of Doubts EP.

ATTH_ARTWORK_RingMaster Review   Influences to the band are said to include the likes of Dance Gavin Dance, Emarosa, Architects, and Slaves; many you can sense across the EP starting with RosaRosa. A lone guitar teases initially as skittish beats surround its distant tempting, that bait soon full in ears as its enterprise swiftly expands. Vocalist Franck.D quickly makes a strong impression with his emotively varied tones whilst the guitars of Vincent.P and Anthony.C dance with sonic suggestiveness on the imagination. It is a highly pleasing start which only strengthens as band and song weave recognisable post hardcore textures into their own adventure.

The following Sweet T picks up the pace and invention next, the song from its initial web of guitar an agitated yet welcoming proposition on a more aggressive skeleton of beats from Guillaume.B. Diversity of voice again works well within the heated maelstrom of sound, it all grounded by the great earthy tone of Shango.W’s bass amidst the spidery resourcefulness of guitar. It is easy to see why it made a strong impact with its video release, the enjoyably busy and at times sonically muggy track growing in drama and persuasion with each passing minute before making way for the instrumental suggestiveness of VII. Melancholically draped in the sense of loneliness, it also warms ears and imagination with its poetic charm and melodic heat, setting up the listener for the similarly toned Lemon Cupcake. It too has a sorrowful air to its melodic caress, though it soon bursts into a tempestuous climate of raw emotion and sound. Alluringly more volatile and antagonistic over time, the track is a mighty trespass on the senses and treat for the ears with a steel and metallic snarl that is less forceful elsewhere on the EP.

Ending with the emotional volatility and sonic ferocity of Catfish, a bracing track featuring Robin Renard, Full of Doubts provides a powerful and highly enjoyable first incitement from A Time To Hope. Major originality is still to come with the band’s sound but already the promise is there in the way they sculpt and unleash their ideas meaning we can only look forward to their next offering with eagerness.

The Full of Doubts EP is out now and available via https://atimetohope.bandcamp.com/releases or http://atimetohope.bigcartel.com/

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Pete RingMaster 06/01/2016

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A Room Swept White – No Love Lost

A Room Swept White Online Promo Shot

As much as we all hope the next new thing we listen to will be an inflamed love affair for ears and the passions, sometimes a just as enjoyable contemplation is a proposition which manages to leave thoughts and emotions balanced between high praise and dissatisfaction. The new No Love Lost EP from UK post hardcore band A Room Swept White is such an encounter. Consisting of five tracks which at times with their raw persuasion ignite a lusty appetite for the band’s imagination and attempt to stand out from the crowd, the release is a potential soaked and ultimately promising first look for us to a band beginning to brew up a buzz. Tempering its success though, those same songs also provide a senses smarting abrasiveness in certain moments which rub personal tastes the wrong way. It all results in a sizeable confrontation which as it twists and tries to find its feet, provides a presence that ensures A Room Swept White will not be simply a passing interest.

Hailing from Crawley and Horsham, A Room Swept White formed in 2011 with the intent “to create a sound that inspires and attacks the senses.” From the first few seconds of the new EP it is fair to say that the quintet has that angle covered quite potently. They create a persuasion which live has impressed forcibly, as shown by gigs alongside the likes of Heart In Hand, Hacktivist, Bury Tomorrow, Feed The Rhino, Bleed From Within, Soulfly, POLAR, and many more persistently drawing strong praise. They have a stage power and intensity which you can suggest has not quite been discovered on No Love Lost, but as implied earlier, their promise is all there to be heard on the band’s new release.

It opens with the evocative melody fuelled Recollection, a brief caress of emotive guitar and cleanly delivered vocal angst over rugged rhythmic scenery. It is an inviting lure taking the listener A Room ...PromoImagestraight into the hoarsely throated This Life. The second track immediately assaults with heftily swung beats from drummer James Farrant against just as antagonistic riffs. Twists in the already inventive designs of guitarists Alex Kirrage and Michael Flood catch the imagination before the coarse vocal rage of Ryan Elliott adds to the antagonistic intent. It is a strong start which finds greater energy as the frontman expels his angry breath, an increase in intensity matched by the guitars great enterprise and the darker moodier basslines of James Nicoll. A further enticing colour comes with the clean vocals of Kirrage, firstly as a backing aligned to the calls of the band. It is a great mix and the track is soon winning over thoughts and appetite, especially as it slips into something melodically and atmospherically more comfortable at one point.

The song flows into the EP’s title track and it too is soon badgering and energetically squalling over the senses. Bulging with uncompromising rhythms and vocal predation courted by coarse riffery, the song is a maelstrom of fresh ideas and at times genre familiarity. It works well but is missing something compared to its predecessor, though the clean vocals and imaginative endeavour of the guitars is a tasty extra.

Vocally is where the EP seems to be raising most debatable points with people, though most seem to praise the hostility of Elliott over the warmer tempting of Kirrage. Personally it is the other way round where the band on this encounter flourishes; the latter providing great and impressive contrast to the less adventurous assault of his band mate. It is all down to taste of course but it would be good to see Elliott mixing up his venomous stance in the future to break the almost overwhelming causticity which at times defuses the success of the creativity elsewhere. Songs like the next up Time Heals especially blossoms from the angst soaked ire dripping from Elliott’s fine attack though, and just as pleasingly from the sonic adventure and melodic flames which wrap around the impressive bait set down by Nicoll and Farrant.

From the best track on the release, No Love Lost ends with the more than decent if slightly underwhelming Better Days. Like the third song on the EP, despite highly agreeable ideas and skilled enterprise, the song is missing the fire of certainly the previous incitement of ears. As No Love Lost as a whole, there is still plenty to get strong satisfaction from and things to be unsure about with the final outcome being that A Room Swept White is a prospect needing more keen attention. Both band and release provide pleasing and enjoyable company but are accompanied by a feeling it is still early days and there will be stronger and more exciting things to judge ahead.

The No Love Lost EP is available from January 12th through all digital platforms.

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RingMaster 12/01/2015

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The Spanking New EP From A Room Swept White Hits The UK This January!

 A Room Swept White Online Promo Shot

Southern Melodic Hardcorers ‘A Room Swept White’ unleash their jaw dropping new EP ‘No Love Lost’ on Monday 12th January 2015. Taking from the edginess and potency of While She Sleeps and The Ghost Inside, and by adding their own absorbing dynamics and alluring melodies, the quintet have produced a forceful fusion of Post-Hardcore.

A Room Swept White were originally born at the tail-end of 2011 in the South East of England. The fiery five-piece wanted to create a sound that inspires and attacks the senses, and they have certainly more than fulfilled their objective. With a keen ear for hearty riffs and pummelling hooks, A Room Swept White have etched out a sound that is hard-hitting, yet still inventive; and that’s no easy task given the present over-saturation within the metalcore genre. ARSW have sparked glowing comparisons to The Ghost Inside, The Amity Affliction and Of Mice & Men; and although they’ve pulled from their influences, they’ve still managed to create a sound uniquely their own.

The five-some hit the ground running on the live circuit, and after a series of sweat-drenched UK shows throughout the south, sharing stages with Heart In Hand, Hacktivist, Bury Tomorrow, Feed The Rhino, Bleed From Within, Soulfly, Demoraliser, Palm Reader, POLAR, Continents and Bleed From Within, and with recent performances at the Redfest and Guilfest festivals, the band’s stock is on the rise.

The band are now set to kick on even further with their latest offering and new record, ‘No Love Lost’. The EP takes shape with the brooding and poignantly phrased ‘Recollection’. However, ‘This Life’ soon turns up the velocity with its breakneck riffage and full vocal assault. The record’s namesake and new single ‘No Love Lost’ twists and contorts itself around your ears to pleasing effect, while ‘Time Heals’ is additional evidence that these Southern metalcorers really have something different to offer. Lastly, ‘Better Days’ showcases the band’s growing stature and utilises dynamics to stunning effect. With five potent cuts, the EP is sure to thrust the band to the vanguard of the UK scene.

A Room ...PromoImage

 

– A ROOM SWEPT WHITE RELEASE ‘NO LOVE LOST’ ON MONDAY 12th JANUARY THROUGH ALL DIGITAL PLATFORMS –

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Cold Summer – UK Tour

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Post hardcore band Cold Summer have annouced the dates to their upcoming UK tour in support of their debut self-titled album released last year.

Cold Summer are fast becoming a critically acclaimed Rock/Post-Hardcore band, reaping the rewards for some fine releases which started with the self release of two EP’s, ‘Transitions’ and ‘Wake’ during 2012, before the Yorkshire band’s
release of their acclaimed debut album album in 2013.
To promote the release the band are heading out on a week long tour of the UK in February 2014. Building on a large and growing fan base across the North of England garnered as Cold Summer played sold out shows alongside well respected bands such as Funeral For A Friend(Distiller Records), Polar (In At The Deep End) Lemuria (Bridge Nine Records), End Of A Year/Self Defense Family (Deathwish Records), Margate (Cybertracks), Blitz Kids (Redbull), Scholars (Banquet), and Aficionado (No Sleep Records) since forming.
Now is the time for more of the country to catch one of the most promising Britsh bands live and with their still passions impressing album.
coldsummertourposter
The dates for the 2014 Cold Summer UK Tour in February:
Saturday 15th – Lounge 41 – Workington
Sunday 16th – The Zombie Hut – Corby
Monday 17th – The Vault Inn – Stockton On-Tees
Tuesday 18th – The Ship Inn – Preston
Wednesday 19th – The Old Blue Last – London 
Thursday 20th – The Hobgoblin – Bath
Friday 21st – Frog & Nightgown – Worksop
 
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