Malum Sky – Diatribe

Welsh progressive metallers Malum Sky have been coaxing attention for a fair while; from the 2015 release of their extremely well-received self-titled debut EP luring praise for their richly flavoured sound.  Now though they are done teasing it and are making real demands on acclaim and spotlights with their new mini-album, Diatribe. Offering five tracks which bound with energy and spirit whilst embroiling the imagination in their creative cunning and bold adventure, the encounter is a cauldron of fascination and pleasure.

Formed in 2014, the quintet as mentioned has earned high plaudits and support and equally through their live presence as their first release and a greedily devoured following single in Eye Above. It is easy to expect all success to date though to be majorly eclipsed by the surely to be eagerly welcomed Diatribe. The band’s sound has always been a multi-flavoured affair with its own notable stand out character but it has evolved and been honed into something truly individual and enthralling as evidenced by the band’s new offering. A collusion of progressive and tech metal with similarly bred melodic rock ferocity, it is a proposition which unapologetically arouses the imagination as like a fever it invades the body, making it inexcusable at the very least to not give it an eager check out.

There is a fresh darker feel to the band’s music from that first release, equally a heavier touch and intensity which seems to accentuate the melodic prowess already shown previously. With even more assured and adventurous songwriting going hand in hand with open individual craft it makes for a rather tasty proposition as proven immediately by opener Year Of The Rat. As it lays out its staggered bait the instantly compelling tones of vocalist Ben Honebone share their harmonic temptation, all the while guitars weaving and rhythms brewing their equally magnetic snares. Guitarists Michael Jensen Després and Jon Evans continue to entangle their enterprise and skills, setting out a web of melodic adventure around the track’s blossoming personality and imagination. A dark heady edge lines every strand set down as eagerly as it fuels the rousing trespass of drums and bass and with a great variety to the vocals around Honebone’s continuing to impress presence, it all makes for a striking and thrilling slice of creative incitement.

There is something of a TesseracT meets Karnivool spicing to the Malum Sky sound but indeed just a flavouring in something solitary to the band as confirmed just as easily by next up Borrower. Its gentle bordering teasing entrance comes with melodic intimation as keys add a melancholic yet radiant air. From the inescapable seductive caress warm vocals dawn but it is only the calm before a tempest of sound and enterprise. That though is equally the step to another twist and shade of emotional and physical dynamics, the track never afraid to revolve and evolve into another aspect of bold invention and initiative. As the first it is also an imposingly infectious affair in every way, its bite addictive and melodic lures delicious; a combination just as resourcefully exploited by next up The Coil. In fact from its first breath, the song has a catchy virulence which had body and spirit dancing like a puppet as ears and imagination succumbed to its brooding breath and increasingly rabid contagion. Després and Evans cast another riveting web of enterprise and technical prowess which alone compels attention but with fine vocals and a rhythmic manipulation to song and ears which directs reactions, the track is another major incitement within Diatribe.

All songs live up to that description though, the fiery and ridiculously infective Eye Above indisputable proof. Through the album the rhythmic incitement of bassist Athanasios ‘Saki’ Patsiouras and drummer Joe Wilkes is irresistible as it is dextrous but within the fourth track they simply seize instincts and appetite with their combined enterprise and drive. Their tenacious spine and leadership just sparks a matching hunger and endeavour from the rest of the band, every element of the track ambitious and ferocious, inventive and unpredictable.

The album’s title track brings things to a might close, the wiry net of enticement cast by the guitars around again voracious rhythms setting the tone of track and temptation. It is a carnivorous yet galvanic proposal grabbing easy attention and greed, a predator of a song again as virulently infectious as it is imaginatively gripping for a conclusion which alone makes the most rousing and memorable experience.

Across every single second, Diatribe was a major treat and adventure impossible to get enough of. Already 2019 has offered some truly striking and thrilling releases; Malum Sky has added another and one surely thrusting the band to the fore of the UK metal scene.

Diatribe is out now through Sliptrick Records across most stores.

http://www.malumsky.com/   https://www.facebook.com/malumsky   https://twitter.com/malumsky

Pete RingMaster 02/02/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Khaidian – Penumbra

The release of the debut album from UK metallers Khaidian has been long time coming, seemingly expected and all geared up to be unleashed in 2016. But as ears and the passions are finally being infested, those patient many will feel it has been more than worth the wait and can assume they will soon be joined by tides of new hungrily impressed and lustful hearts. Penumbra is quite simply superb; a cauldron of imagination and intensity wrapped in a rainbow of melodic enterprise amidst a tempest of technical and multi-flavoured dexterity.

Listening to Penumbra, there is no surprise at the rising reputation and stature of the London based outfit; both recently given boost by a trio of lead tracks to the album. Weaving a web of rich intrigue and thick persuasion bred from a fusion of progressive and technical metal, the band’s sound is just as inventive and tempting with its alignment to eager strains of electronic cunning. It is something akin to a fusion of the voracious flavours and touch of Gojira, Sikth and The Browning with the ravenous/melodic adventuring of Tricore/An Entire Legion; even so Khaidian pull it all to a proposition which is as unapologetically unique as it is greedily captivating as Penumbra forcibly proves.

Founded in 2010 by guitarist/programmer John Tyrell (ex-Interlock), Khaidian found its first few years as much a difficult journey to find the right mix and line-up of people as an adventure in nurturing and breeding their vision and sound. In fact, the perfect mix of personnel only really appeared once drummer Paul Fowler (ex Dragnerve) was enlisted to join Tyrell, vocalist Andy Hutton (ex-Stoopi/Dragnerve), and bassist Joseph Perumal (Mortad/ex-Almamorta). It was Fowlers departure leading up to the original release date of Penumbra which he plays upon which played a big part in its delay it seems but the band has since found the equally striking and agile percussionist in Kris Perrin (Gravil, ex-One Fell Down, Faux Fighters), he completing the current line-up last year.

Now with everything firmly in place Penumbra has been unveiled and we for one can only suggest it is the first leap in a massive and surely certain ascent for the band into the broadest spotlights. The album opens with Pearls Before Swine and immediately had ears pricked and appetite keenly intrigued as sonic and electronic enticement colluded with already stirring rhythmic lures. Just as swiftly the equally potent and enticing vocals of Hutton step forward; his clean, calm yet emotive tones an alluring bridge between the band’s sides of physical trespass and suggestive melody, their indeed their technical hunger and electronic intimation. The track continues to stomp and dance with the senses, a mix of the familiar and boldly fresh creating a whole new vehicle for ears and imagination to ride with.

The striking start is only reinforced by the band’s outstanding new video/single Dominion. Its entrance is even more rapacious but almost instantly wears a portentous calm before its predacious instincts unite with inventive and somatic catchiness. Pure persuasion with increasing enslavement of the senses, the track embraces further hues resembling those cast by Voyager and Fear Factory as it twists and turns with relish but never breaking its fluidity or charm carrying rapacity.

The following Trigger The Landslide glides in on electronic shadows around a slim but copious melodic insinuation; all the while its air brewing an intensity and threat which turns into a senses harrying stroll. Still the menace is part anger, part seduction; the song never choosing sides even as its body and imagination boils across another devilish landscape of thought, emotion, and craft. As with all tracks some kind of participation is inevitable with the increasingly blossoming and thrilling encounter, a manipulation just as potent within next up Thrive and in turn Sense Of The Spherical. A Korn-esque scent pervades the first of the outstanding two, its carnivorous breath colluding with the skittish flirtation and bite of rhythms and the tantalising yet voracious almost rabid lures of guitars. Hutton again is a matching magnet in its midst as the track creatively and vocally writhes while its successor similarly draws dark and esurient strains of sound and intent with melodic and flirtatious enterprise to tempt, seduce, and infest ears and imagination in tandem with the body.

The album concludes with the pair of Evasion and Dramatic Professions Of Martyrdom, the band getting under the skin with relish in the first where again whiffs of Korn meets Fear Factory share its own inescapable  individuality, and through the second’s musical irritability, melodic and electronic espionage, and simply unique prowess. Both tracks enslaved as heartily and strenuously as those before, the bounce of bodies enough to suggest eager submission, the following lust unbridled confirmation.

No release is going to win over all but with its thick mix of flavours including at times spices of grunge, alternative metal and more alongside sheer invention, Penumbra is one which is going to conquer far more than most and with ease we suggest. Though in theory three years late it is one of the freshest most thrilling things heard here in a long time and Khaidian one of the most exciting propositions.

Penumbra is out now through Armalyte Industries; available @ https://armalyte.bandcamp.com/album/khaidian-penumbra

http://www.khaidian.com/   https://www.facebook.com/khaidianmusic/   https://twitter.com/khaidian

Pete RingMaster 30/01/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Masiro – Geodesics

Simultaneously teasing and engaging the imagination from start to finish, Geodesics is the new EP from British instrumental metallers Masiro. It offers up six tracks which take the listener on their own inspired journey through realms of creative intimation and magnetic craft; a collection of pieces which provide a straight line to pleasure but across a landscape of adventure which curves and fascinates like an aural kaleidoscope.

A trio hailing from Oxford, Masiro consists of original founders in guitarist Mike Bannard and drummer Chris Pethers, the band emerging as a duo in 2011, alongside bassist Chris Hutchinson Mogg formerly of ex-50ft Panda. Scented by the inspirations of artists such as Meshuggah, Primus, Mars Volta, Animals as Leaders, 65 Days of Static, Psyopus and many more, their music is a tapestry woven from strains of mathcore, progressive metal, and post rock though that only skirts over its varied richness. The band soon drew acclaim once releasing debut EP Technocologist Unknown in 2016, praise and recognition only thickened by their live presence which has seen them share stages with the likes of Poly Math, Core of IO, Iran Iran, and Kusanagi as well as festival appearances.

Geodesics is surely set to see Masiro lure even greater and broader recognition and plaudits their way, though strangely it is an encounter which with us depended on close attention to be really seduced and enthralled. As background support to whatever maybe needed to be done, it is a certainly fully enjoyable but a touch too easy to have distractions take charge but sit ears down with headphones and record and Masiro had us lost in its riveting web of craft and imagination whilst bouncing to its dynamics and suggestive incitement.

The EP swiftly entices with opener Andromeda Handshake, the track almost instantly a sonic chasm of turbulence but from within which tendrils of melody bred guitar wrap around ears and imagination The snarling almost bestial tone of the bass keeps the threat alive whilst rhythms pick their spots with rapacious intent. The tempest though breeds melodic radiance, it being swallowed once more but only to wait its moment to crystalize air and the rich temptation it ignites. Perpetually evolving, the track transfixes from start to finish with its mercurial flight.

The following K-Ursa is a far calmer proposition from its first breath. Featuring the saxophone prowess of Charlie Cruickshank, the song is a warm almost summery canter but with bold flames in its sultry climate. Again though there is a volatile instinct to the music, one which never fully ignites but brings a thought inspiring temper to the melodic beauty woven and eventually incites it all to come to a fiery head for its finale.

Both tracks also revel in an array of infection spreading hooks and twists, a creative agility just as potent within next up 21:15. With shadows courting its lining and depths, the track is a dark almost predatory controlled waltz, always intimating a portentous outcome even through its melodic elegance; a threat accentuated by the throaty growl and crawl of the bass and Pether’s agile swings. As all tracks it sends thoughts off on an exploration, espionage and danger courting their conjuring this time around.

The sonic displacement of Intermission: Graveyard Orbit with Lee Riley supplying drone dissonance intrigued if not much more and is soon forgotten as the outstanding End Permian emerges from its raw mists. Instantly a nagging groove had us hooked, its guitar lure increasing as the bass seduced as it prowled with slight irritability amidst a shimmering melodic glaze. Subsequently, as you can rightly assume, the piece gyrates with ideation and individual craft aligned to a united imagination, every slip into something new as fluid as it is expectantly unpredictable.

The release concludes with Grand Trine, another inescapable incitement of emotional and physical response. It is carnival of eager bordering rabid enterprise, the band’s mathcore instincts dancing like a dervish around relaxed moments of equally compelling melodic insinuation. As with all tracks, where it takes you will be as individual as the sounds provoking your imagination and as each we suspect leaving little else but pleasure especially the deeper you immerse in its creative emprise.

That is the same for Geodesics as a whole, give it your total time and attention and the rewards verge on the irresistible.

Geodesics is released September 7th, available @ https://masiro.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/masiromusic   https://twitter.com/masiroband   https://www.instagram.com/masiro_band/

Pete RingMaster 07/09/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Eryn Non Dae. – Abandon Of The Self

Can it really be approaching six years since French metallers Eryn Non Dae. left us and so many others drooling over their last album Meliora. It was a release which continues to lure and led us at the time to boldly suggest that extreme and progressive metal had a band which would “continually stretch the wide genres to impressive heights.” At last they have released its successor in the invasive shape of Abandon Of The Self; an encounter which more than justifies our claim.

Since the release of Meliora, unsurprisingly there have been a fair few bands and releases which have offered similar striking propositions. Many have pushed the boundaries of genres which are never slow in exploring new trespasses and adventures anyway.  Abandon Of The Self now steps forward to join that collection of inspiring encounters, and we dare to say from the very frontline of the triumphant wave.

Formed in 2001, as The End, the Toulouse hailing quintet released their debut album, Hydra Lernaïa, through Metal Blade in 2009. It was a spark to attention and an already well brewed reputation the band had nurtured through their live presence and earlier EP. Meliora brought a whole new plateau of sound and imagination with its unveiling in 2012 which Abandon Of The Self has now escalated with its atmospheric drama and sonic invention.

Once again Eryn Non Dae. linked up with Mobo for the recording, mixing and mastering of Abandon Of The Self and swiftly gripped attention and the imagination with opener Astral. It looms in from a distance, static distortion shimmering in its air as a rhythmic shuffle soon infests ears and incites even keener attention. The raw throated scowl of vocalist Mathieu Nogues erupts against the track’s swing, the guitars of Franck Quintin and Yann Servanin gathering their wiry lures to subsequently wind around the pulsating surge of the growing trespass. Calm, clean vocals rise within the brewing tempest, conflicting atmospheres colluding rather than battling around the intrigue and voracity of the song. The rolling beats of Julien Rufié unite with the rhythmic grumble of Mickaël André’s bass to magnetically entice but it is the layers of contrasting textures and the immersive breath of the track which really pulls the listener in.

The compelling start to the album is thickened by the menace lined flirtation of Stellar. Nogues vocally walks through atmospheric intimation; his tones and expression becoming more intense as guitars weave a captivating almost feral aurora of sound as again rhythms court the predacious climate with their manipulative swing. It is a truly magnetic soundscape for ears to embrace and the imagination to explore, the band’s own lyrical and physical suggestion equally sparking fresh ventures in thoughts even as the senses increasingly cower before the brewing celestial storm.

Omni similarly sees Nogues with an initially controlled and provocative presence within a kaleidoscope of melodic and sonic wiring around the ever infectious craft of André and Rufié. Though inescapably invasive and disturbing, the ambient winds cast by Quintin and Servanin are tantalising, hinting and probing the psyche whilst allowing the volatility in the song’s heart and atmosphere to increasingly infest their mercurial weave. As with all songs and the album, every listen unveils new melancholic aspects, rapacious shadows, and dark depths to feast upon but equally a radiance which only draws you back time and time again.

The following Eclipse has a bubbling urgency to its predatory rock ‘n’ roll which arouses the senses just as potently as the atmospheric ferocity and seduction which entangles via the guitars. Every corner of the song and band unleash a compelling statement of emotion and enticement, again lust and fear hand in hand as submission to its evocative inferno was swift and inescapable before the epic flight of Halo invades and consumes, driven by further outstanding rhythmic engineering of song and the senses it manipulates. Getting lost in its soundscape was easy, immersing in its angst and emotional turbulence similarly certain, every moment of its ten minutes plus a refreshing intrusion of body and psyche.

The album closes with firstly Fragment, a pulsating inferno of intensity and untethered dissonance from voice to melodic toxicity and rhythmic incitement, and finally through the apocalyptic realm of Abyss. As with all tracks, the pair escort, no drag the listener through soundscapes which never settle and never allow predictability or an absence of adventure confront ears, the latter especially monstrous yet majestic as ire and fury merge with monolithic beauty and ravenous passion.

Though Abandon Of The Self made an immediate rich and irresistible impact, it was with time that is really gripped and thrilled as those dark corners and skilled layers were further exposed. The band describes their album as “a trip into the depths of the soul”, its press release, “a beast of a release!” We can only endorse both and suggest Eryn Non Dae. have not only sprung their finest moment yet but one of the year’s essential listens.

Abandon Of The Self is out now via Debemur Morti Productions; available @ https://erynnondae.bandcamp.com/ or https://erynnondae.bandcamp.com/album/abandon-of-the-self

https://www.erynnondae.com/    http://www.facebook.com/ERYNNONDAEofficial/

Pete RingMaster 21/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Tides of change: Talking Currents with In Vain

Photo by Jørn Veberg

There have already been some truly striking releases in 2018 and maybe no more so than the new album from Norwegian metallers In Vain. Currents is a progressive metal adventure which surprises at every twist and enthrals at every turn. With big thanks to him, we recently had the pleasure to explore the album closely with guitarist/songwriter Johnar Håland and the band, getting to its heart, its journey to release and much more….

Hi Guys, many thanks for sparring your time to talk with us.

It is fair to say that it is a busy time for the band with the recent release of your new album, Currents. Have you had time to sit back and reflect on its initial success and plaudits yet?

Hi! Thanks for your review and for taking the time to do this interview. Things are quieting down a bit now and as you say, the feedback has been really good. However, I am not really a person who looks back. My thoughts are more focused on the next album.

It seems that you have spent a long time in its creation, that time certainly reflected and heard in all its honed intricacies and bold adventures. What is the time scale for its creation?

Our previous album, Ænigma, was released in 2013 and there seems to be people who think we spent five years writing this album. That is not the case. There are several reasons for why this album was delayed. Personal issues forced me to put composing on halt for almost a year, and with me being the only songwriter in the band that forced the whole process to a standstill. In addition, I was working on the debut album of my other band, From Strength to Strength, which is a hardcore band that will release its debut album some time during 2018. On top of that I spent the majority of my spare time reading for the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst), which is a self-study in finance I have been doing the last three years besides my full-time job. The album was actually finished in June 2017, but we could not set a release date until we had a proper tour booked to support the release. So there are many reasons for this long delay. Hopefully it will not take five years until the next album!

I am sure you will not disagree with us when we say it is your biggest, boldest, and most imaginative release. Did you have any specific aims when writing and creating Currents or it just organically evolved into what we hear?

I am not really sure to be honest. Our debut album The Latter Rain (2007) was also quite bold. Back then we were a totally new and unknown band who released an album of one hour with grandiose and complex music supported by 20 guest musicians. So that was definitely a brave musical undertaking.

In all aspects, we feel Currents eclipses its acclaimed and also richly enjoyable predecessor, Ænigma. Where do you see the biggest evolution?

To be honest, I am not a fan of comparing music. In my opinion, Currents is another strong album in our catalogue. It is a very diverse album full of contrasts and has high-quality music with longevity. I take it as a sign of quality that there are different opinions with regards to which of our albums people enjoy the most. I do not believe Currents is that much different from our previous work, but there are some changes. The production is more organic, there are some shorter songs and it is less black metal compared with our previous releases.

Currents embraces the widest array of flavours and styles in your sound yet, a truly expansive landscape weaved around bold yet often delicate contrasts but it still has that signature In Vain breath. Did you have to concentrate on keeping that character or it again just naturally evolved as indeed that broad tapestry of sound?

I think it is just a natural evolution to be honest. I do not really think that the music is that much different from our previous releases, however there are some new elements. For instance we have one song, Soul Adventurer, with mainly clean vocals. We also have a song with acapella choirs, Blood We Shed, and that is something we have not done before.

You linked up, as for the previous album, with producer Jens Bogren. It is fair to say he gets your sound and imagination but what does he especially bring to the mix which you feel adds to the realisation of your ideas?

We were very pleased with Jens’ work on Ænigma. We did not really have any other alternatives at hand and decided to go back to him. We wanted a much more organic sound this time around though, and I think we achieved that. Jens usually knows what we want and I think we have the same views on what sounds good and not.

Give us some insight into the recording of the album.

All the guitars and bass were recorded in my home studio, except for some lead guitar solos that Kjetil recorded at his home. Vocals and other instruments were recorded in Strand Studio in Oslo. Everything was re-amped by Jens Bogren and he also did the whole mixing and mastering of the album. However, we were never present in his studio and only communicated with him via email and phone.

We have had the real pleasure of having an insight into the lyrical side of the album ahead of its emergence. Can you share some of the themes and inspirations to the songs?

Currents is not a concept album in the traditional sense, however there is a topic and a red line in the music, lyrics and artwork. Currents, reflects on the colossal shifts and changes of our time. The present world is characterized by continental flows of people, traditions and cultures. Migration of people across continents and borders…Cultures merging. Dramatic shifts in lifestyle from one generation to the next. This topic exists in both the lyrics and the music however we only touch upon it in an abstract way with a top-down view. It is important for me to clarify that we do not have any direct political views on this matter reflected in our lyrics.  Besides that, the lyrical themes are varied, ranging from personal experiences and struggles, to contemplations on nature, philosophy and the historical and political development of this twisted world we´re living in.

Was there a particular process to the writing of songs for Currents?

The process was the same as previously. I write the songs alone and present complete compositions to the rest of the band. Later on I involve Sindre in the preproduction, as he also lives in Oslo. All members are free to add their personal touch to the songs and to give suggestions, but as the songwriter I have the final word.

It also sees a few guests such as drummer Baard Kolstad (Leprous, Borknagar), vocalist and former band member Kristian Wikstøl (From Strength to Strength), and vocalist Matthew Kiichi Heafy (Trivium). Were these happy happenings or thought of early on in the album’s creation?

This was something we decided on during the preproduction process. All the guests added their personal touch to the album and we are very pleased with their performance.

I know as for so many bands finances make a major part in decisions and possibilities in keeping going let alone forging ahead with releases, tours etc. for In Vain. How did this put restraints on Currents and do you see crowd funding as a feasible way forward?

We are fortunate to be able to record albums of the quality we prefer. The total budget for this album is around 50 000 EUR I guess, so hopefully people understand that they need to support us financially if they want to hear more In Vain albums in the future. We have not paid anything out of our own pockets. The label pays and we are also fortunate to get some financial support from various grants in Norway. However, the label obviously needs to get in break-even before we will get any part of the potential profit. Touring is more challenging and a tour costs a lot of money. Financing definitely puts a limit on how many tours we are able to do.

As with your previous albums, Currents is available through Indie Recordings. How have they helped, apart from the obvious, in bringing the album to our ears?

We have been with Indie Recordings since 2005 and we are actually the first band they ever signed. We have a good relationship with them. Obviously there are things that could be better, but that is always the case.

For those new to In Vain can you tell them about the beginnings of the band…the early days?

In Vain is a Norwegian band that plays progressive extreme metal and was formed in 2003. Andreas (vocals), Sindre (vocals) and myself (guitar) are the founding members, while Kjetil (guitar) joined the band in 2009 during the recording of our second album Mantra. Our bassist Alex has been around since 2013 and our drummer Tobias joined us recently. So far we have released four albums and two EPs, and we signed with Indie Recordings after releasing our second EP Wounds in 2005. Our latest album Currents was released on 26 January 2018 and we just came back from a European tour with Orphaned Land, Subterranean Masquerade and Aevum.

What is next for In Vain, shows etc. and once the dust of its triumph settles ahead?

We just came back from a European tour with Orphaned Land, Subterranean Masquerade and Aevum. We covered London, France, Spain, Arnhem and Essen. Our hope is to do another tour later in the year where we cover the countries we did not have the chance to go to on this tour. Besides that we will play some shows in Norway and some festivals.

Once again big thanks for giving us your time. Any last words you would like to share?

Thank you very much for your support, we appreciate it! To the readers; keep supporting great music, have a go at our new album Currents, and stop by our FB page at https://www.facebook.com/InVainOfficial/ for news, music, tour dates and other stuff.

Check out the review of Currents @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2018/02/04/in-vain-currents/

http://www.invain.org/     https://twitter.com/invainofficial

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 07/04/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hyvmine – Earthquake

High praise has been brewing up around Los Angeles quartet Hyvmine and it is not too hard to understand why listening to their debut album, Earthquake. The release is a tapestry of attention gripping craft and substance, an encounter woven with individual style and enterprise united with a single rock ‘n’ roll intent.

Hyvmine could be said to be a proposition built around or for the striking technical skill and open imagination of lead guitarist/vocalist Al Joseph but the band’s first album soon shows it is all about four very talented musicians bringing individual prowess to a common guile and aim. Their sound is a magnetic fusion of progressive metal, hard rock, and grunge, a weave which at times ebbs and flows in its imagination stoking qualities and success but is never less than one seriously fascinating and enjoyable proposal.

Earthquake wakes upon ears with Shift, keys like suggestive mist immersing the senses before piano and guitar cast their own inviting welcome. Al’s earthier vocals step forward soon after bringing grunge nurtured hues with him, the song already aligning a mix of flavours and only continues to broaden its web as Al’s guitar paints its creative intent around the rousing rhythmic rumble sprung by bassist Christopher Joseph and drummer Fabrizio Cavallaro. With veins of progressive and heavy metal continuing to escape the strings of Al and fellow guitarist Alon Mei-Tal, the track simply lures intrigue and increasingly keen attention.

The following Mirror Master opens with a bass led grumble, a Sick Puppies like breath joining it as the song swiftly eclipses its predecessor. Veins of technical dexterity and cunning ensure the imagination is persistently caught unawares and pleasured as wholly as ears, the track bursting from its earthier canvas like a firework before settling down to similarly enticing heavier rock incitement. It is a weave emulated across the album in numerously individual ways, as the following Shogun shows with its instinctive rapacious growl and Seether-esque croon. Flowing through mellower scenes, the backing vocals of Alon a warm caress, and steelier climes, the song seduces and snarls with equal tenacity and temptation.

All Of Creation brings its own braid of menace and melody next, grooves winding around the senses as vocals and melodies smoulder if with a great gravelly raw edge especially in the former. If you can imagine a fusion of TesseracT and Stone Temple Pilots, this absorbing track could very well epitomise your thoughts. Again Al’s skills radiate but as elsewhere they are never, even with the startling twists leading to his strands of creative flair, forced upon ears but organically embraced with a track’s roar.

The album’s melodically seductive title track engagingly, almost lovingly, wraps around the listener but still holds a thick growl in its depths while Fire Escape prowls with a plaintive grouchiness as it flirts and challenges with a funk infused, predation lined shuffle. Each left a definite want for more, a lure pretty much all tracks within Earthquake sow as echoed by the melodically atmospheric Elysium. Like a heavy rock equivalent of The Christians meets Voyager, the song is pure mesmerism, its metallic touch addictive and harmonic heart irresistible.

The album closes with firstly the similarly hued but firmly hard rock nurtured Great Divide and lastly the flaming almost tempestuous Cliffhanger. Neither song quite ignited the appetite as their predecessors but both just left an already bred intent to enjoy the album again and again a little more urgent each offering moments of real mouth-watering adventure within their bodies.

Though making a great first impression, Earthquake really grows with every listen, recognisable aspects aligning with uniqueness for one thoroughly pleasurable encounter.

Earthquake is out now through Seek and Strike, available @ https://hyvmine.bandcamp.com/releases and https://seekandstrikemerch.com/products/hyvmine-earthquake-cd

https://www.facebook.com/hyvmineband/

Pete RingMaster 23/01/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright