Valensole – Make Pace EP

Just under a year ago, British punks Valensole sparked intrigue and pleasure with their debut EP, Where We Should Be. It was a potential loaded, ear grabbing introduction to the Southampton trio suggesting a band with all the right attributes and imagination to make potent strides within the UK rock scene. Now that suggestion has been reinforced and given greater strength by Make Pace, a second EP of raw and rousing punk ‘n’ roll very easy to devour.

Embracing inspirations from the likes of Nirvana, Green Day, Sum 41, and early Foo Fighters, Valensole was formed in 2016. The threesome of vocalist/guitarist Elliott Jones, guitarist Nick Jones, and bassist Dave Parker certainly had ears and praise attentive with that first EP and such the fresh character and tone to its successor, we can only expect them to find much even greater attention upon the release of Make Pace.

With Kurt Philips providing drums throughout, the EP kicks off with Giving Up, its jumbled start instantly spawning a tasty guitar hook which soon leads into a tenacious stroll through ears. Simultaneously a new richer flavouring to the band’s punk sound begins tempting, the track merging its raw traits with infectious enterprise as it increasingly stomps around. Dave’s bass has a gorgeous dark steely tone, Elliot’s vocals matching its lure in earnest attitude as his and Nick’s guitars throw their sonic wares around. As with the first EP, we found flavouring more akin to the likes of Psychedelic Furs and The Vibrators than those earlier mentioned influences but more so the band’s own voice in sound and invention emerges this time around.

The potent start is soon matched by the following M.A.D, the track immediately getting under the skin with its opening spicy hook. Both guitars tease and tempt, uniting in a fiery lure backed by the stirring swings of drums and the grumbling stroll of the bass. There is a great vintage punk lining to the Valensole sound, one especially vocal in the rousing antics of the second song even as it slips into calmer, provocative waters. It all erupts again for a tenacious finale as physically bracing as it is catchy before So Bored moves in with its ear nagging endeavour. Carrying a whiff of Buzzcocks to its melodically scored trespass of a hook, the track soon revels in its caustic rock ‘n’ roll breeding but as its predecessor is a proposition which is unafraid to explore unpredictable twists and turns before lighting its riotous touch paper once again.

The EP ends with Don’t Let Go, a song again drawing those Richard Butler and co references while uncaging its own individuality. Equally there is a garage punk meets Generation X scent to the song, a thickly flavoursome hue adding to the unrelenting pleasure the track and indeed Make Pace overall sparks.

Valensole’s sound is on a journey, one still evolving and growing. The band’s first EP hinted at its promise, the second reveals new depth and adventure to add to that potential. When it will all come to full maturity time will tell but the ride on the way is undoubtedly going to be great fun with the anticipation of many more easily devoured treats like Make Pace.

Make Pace is released February 9th.

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Pete RingMaster 06/02/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Devil In Faust – Come Apart

Grabbing ears straightaway is not the easiest thing to achieve as numerous music fans can testify but to truly and swiftly catch the imagination is a rare success but something Brit goth rockers The Devil In Faust have done with their debut EP, Come Apart. It is not necessarily the most unique encounter though its web of enterprise and temptation is certainly individual to the Shrewsbury hailing trio, but it has open freshness to its creative drama and virulent adventure which just clicked with our ears and appetites.

Formed late 2014 by old school friends in vocalist/guitarist Al Pritchard and drummer Ben Codd, The Devil In Faust soon made a strong impression on their local live scene whilst their debut video single, Dark Places, found potent online success. Subsequent sharing of stages with the likes of Dani Filth’s Devilment and Sinnergod only furthered their growing reputation as too following singles, all a spark to the band receiving an invitation to record in Aarhus, Denmark with Tue Madsen (Moonspell, Meshuggah, Sick of it All) where they demoed twelve tracks then whittled down to the four making up band’s first EP. With a stable line-up now in place with the addition of bassist Jess Lomas, the trio are ready to impose on bigger spotlights with Come Apart leading the way.

The EP opens with the outstanding Cross Your Heart, a slice of virulent temptation working away at ears and imagination from its first breath. Swiftly, there is a familiarity to the band’s sound yet as suggested earlier, it is woven into a boldness of invention belonging to The Devil In Faust. Like a blend of Flesh For Lulu and Clan of Xymox with a touch of Southern Death Cult and 1919, the track strolls in with a seductive shimmer around rhythmic incitement. Pritchard’s potent voice is soon in the midst of the compelling bait, directing the virulence with his distinctive tones as his guitar spins a web of chords and hooks. Quickly infectious and increasingly virulent, the track has attention in its creative palms in no time, physical participation enticed soon after.

The excellent start is backed by the equally alluring presence of Soulmate. Dark melancholic strings and gothic keys caress the imagination initially; from within their theatre a tenacious dance of energy and infection simmers and boils sparking a rousing rock ‘n’ roll stroll part Psychedelic Furs, part The Lords of the New Church, and just a little Alice In Chains but again boisterously The Devil In Faust in nature and devilment. Its fluid flow through lively and mellower moments comes drenched in catchy contagion, the calmer passages emulated and expanded in next up In My Eyes, an acoustic led slice of captivating balladry cast in a hug of emotive shadows which soon has the body rocking and passions entangled in its inventive landscape. There is a whiff of The Only Ones to the song and not for the first time a thought arises that if The Devil In Faust had arisen three or so decades back their success would be guaranteed.

Those dark shadows cloak next up Seed, its instinctive growl lining another increasingly contagious escapade coloured with sultry psychedelic rock hues. Adding essences not too far removed from a fusion of The Doors and The Birthday Party, the song simply and swiftly beguiles ears with again familiarity and new enterprise entangling for a thoroughly gripping adventure.

If The Devil In Faust never realises the potential rich within Come Apart, more of the same will go down a treat next time around but growth there will be and that is something we are eagerly anticipating; something hard to imagine we will be alone in.

Come Apart is out now on all major platforms.

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Pete RingMaster 03/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Valensole – Where We Should Be

valensole-promo-shotSum 41, Green Day, Nirvana; all bands which have been an influence in an eclectic bunch on the Southampton trio. All are flavours easy to understand being used but for us just as potent, maybe even more so, are references to others such as Psychedelic Furs, Reuben, and Pennywise

The debut EP from British punksters Valensole has been recommended as for fans of the likes of Sum 41, Green Day, Nirvana; all bands which have been an influence in an eclectic bunch on the Southampton trio. All are flavours easy to understand being used but for us just as potent, maybe even more so, are references to others such as Psychedelic Furs, Reuben, and Pennywise. What it shows is that there are many rich essences in a sound which still is finding its feet and ultimate identity on the evidence of the band’s debut EP, Where We Should Be but a mix and imagination of sound which also ensures that their introduction is an impressive and thickly enjoyable one.

Embracing the punk DIY ethic, Valensole have unleashed their first self-released outing alone, vocalist/guitarist and primary songwriter Elliott Jones taking on mixing duties. The result is a raw and pleasingly dirty affair which it is easy to imagine captures the band’s live presence much more than most encounters do their creators. It leaps from the blocks in potent style with opener Staple Waster. Spicy riffs collude with concussive beats initially, their slim but irresistible bait the intro into a muggy affair of fuzzy riffs and biting rhythms. Jones soon gets involved vocally, that Psychedelic Furs spicing arising as his tones remind of Richard Butler from said outfit with a whiff of Billy Idol too. The track continues to impose and tease with attitude and flirtatious hooks; boisterous punk rock invading and pleasing ears and a quickly forming appetite for the Valensole sound.

valensole-cover-artworkSum 41, Green Day, Nirvana; all bands which have been an influence in an eclectic bunch on the Southampton trio. All are flavours easy to understand being used but for us just as potent, maybe even more so, are references to others such as Psychedelic Furs, Reuben, and PennywiseDon’t Follow Me leaps in next, its body and character just as aggressively relishing the trespassing of the senses. Managing to prowl around at the same time as devouring them with rapacious energy, the song snarls and growls with the hooks of lead guitarist Nick Jones inescapable and the bass taunts of Dave Parker gripping, his backing vocals to Jones just as persuasive.

An immediately tempting hook spears next up Believe, its salacious tease erupting amidst another scuzzy wash of sound and vocals with a tinge of The Heartbreakers to it. Rolling, rumbling beats are just as virulent in the fiercely infectious slice of rough ‘n’ ready pop punk quickly followed by the band’s new single and EP title track. Where We Should Be taps into an early Generation X scented countenance, riffs and rhythms a magnetically caustic and intrusive yet seductive trespass in a boisterous song quickly involving the listener.

Completed by the enjoyably abrasive and just as often melodically tempered Inside Out, a concluding slab of easy to devour rock ‘n’ roll, Where We Should Be only leaves a want and hunger for more. It is soaked in strength of potential matching its already very agreeable attributes, a mix providing a great first contact with Valensole and intrigue loaded anticipation for their subsequent growth and releases.

The Where We Should Be EP is released through all stores on March 3rd.

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Pete RingMaster 02/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Rousing waltzes and alluring confrontations: talking Calling All Astronauts with David Bury

Calling All Astronauts_RingMaster Review

British electro rockers Calling All Astronauts continued an inescapable trend of releasing some of the UK’s finest provocative and rousing encounters with their new album Anti-Social Network a short few weeks back. An uncaging of snarling and virulent rock ‘n’ roll with a political and emotional bite, the album showed the addictive prowess of CAA in getting bodies bouncing and thoughts exploring. Meaning for a long time to talk with the band, the outstanding album was the spark which made the time to act now. So with big thanks to band vocalist/writer/producer David Bury, we turned the spotlight on CAA and Anti-Social Network with plenty more insights in tow.

Hi David and thanks for sharing time with us.

Before we get into your new album, Anti-Social Network, can you tell us about the beginnings of Calling All Astronauts for those still new to the band? How did you all meet and what became the spark to the creation of the band?

J and I used to be in a band called US:UK together, J then went on to be in the pop-punk Caffeine. Caffeine had drawn to a standstill after numerous tours of the UK and US, we bumped into each other and just thought we’d like to have a jam for old time’s sake. One thing led to another and Calling All Astronauts was born. We originally had Andy the Caffeine drummer, but he went travelling, while he was away I decided to learn about programming drums and keys, and that’s how the sound we now have developed.

As you said all of you in the band now have experiences before and outside of Calling All Astronauts; how much has the band been shaped by those musical adventures either in where you want to go with it or in what not to get involved in again?

You learn a lot about the industry over the years; the good memories, the parties, the massive gigs are the ones you cherish, but the knowledge you gain about how the music business runs really shapes your attitude towards it.

We first caught on to the band through the single Winter Of Discontent in 2012, which was your second? This was already a lively and potent time for the band live, the playing with the likes of Echo & The Bunnymen, PWEI, Sigue Sigue Sputnik and A Place To Bury Strangers amongst your shows, and in making music as well as reactions to those early releases. What was the feeling in CAA back then and how has that differed over time, if at all?

The feeling than was actually pretty much the same as it is now, we always feel both flattered and humbled that anyone likes our music, we are just three guys recording in my lounge, yeah in modern terms that’s a studio, but it’s a lounge nonetheless; we’ve got Sky Sports on in the background, my cats walking through, and we are under the Heathrow flight path, so I regularly have to redo a vocal when a plane has been particularly low. 🙂  We do what we do; it’s a kind of love us or hate us, it’s your choice, we won’t take it personally if we are not to your tastes, but we’ll embrace you as a friend if you get what we do.

Calling All Astronauts Promo PictureSince then singles, EPs, and an impressive debut album has come and gone; all leading to the recent release of second album Anti-Social Network. Following the band over those encounters, your music has clearly evolved and grown over time. From the inside how do you see and hear that change?

I think that is a direct reflection on my production skills. I’ve learnt so much in the last four years about how to actually make a record. We are a Rock And Roll band that works in the manner of a dance act; we pay a lot of attention to how our records sound sonically. We took a long time recording Anti-Social Network because we wanted to make an album that we’ll still be proud of as a piece of art in 25 years’ time.

Apart from personnel, how too as CAA changed mentally in regard to making music and how you deal with the music scene.

I don’t think we have actually changed much, we are all kind of set into the people we are. We do however have an increasing dislike of the mainstream music industry, and how it brainwashes kids into thinking things that are mediocre at best are amazing. If you swallow diamonds your turds with contain diamonds, but they will still be turds.

The band is seems defiantly DIY; your releases for example being uncaged on your own Supersonic Media. Has that always been the intention or just how things have worked out?

It seems that way, as yet, we’ve never sent any demos or any of our releases to any record labels. Actually I lie. I did give a copy of the first album to Brett the radio guru at Epitaph. I met him in LA and just wanted him to know how we sound rather than looking for a deal, so gave him a copy of the album, but that’s about it. We like having artistic control; yes we would be a lot bigger than we are if we were with a big indie or major, but at what artistic cost. I’m doubtful any of them would allow us to make an album as eclectic as Anti-Social Network; they want their artists to make an album of the same track 11 times, all the different variations around the same three chords.

Let us get right into Anti-Social Network now. Did you approach its writing and creation as you have previous releases or try something different in its making?

Yes pretty much, except we had Paul on board for this one. We tend to start with a drum track and built up from there, it’s quite like building a house, and as we all know, without solid foundations you may as well build your house out of straw.

You seem to have woven essences of many of your inspirations over the decades in its sound which was an extra tasty spice for us as I know we share similar favourite artists and songs from the seventies and eighties especially. Was this something you set out to do or just an organic arising from the writing?

Not really, we had a bunch of ideas, and as they grew organically into the songs they now are, we often referenced them using the names of the bands that they had a feel of. All the album sounds like us; I don’t think any of it could be called a pastiche. I think it’s maybe more a case of, band X made some amazing records, let’s see if we can make something that can stand up in its own right against what they did. It would have been the easiest thing in the world for us to make 11 tracks all sounding like Time To Fight Back or conversely Always Be True, but that’s really not what we are about. CAA to us is about making music we like, it’s not some master plan to sell millions of records; we’d rather be Clock DVA than Coldplay every day of the week.

Like many we generally call CAA an electro punk/rock band. As the new album shows, your sound is much richer and varied than that suggests. How would you describe it for newcomers?

It’s kind of like a ride on the world biggest Rock And Roll Rollercoaster. You never know whether it’s going to turn, or drop or go upside down until it’s upon you. Wow that sounds pretentious; ok, just imagine all your favourite left field rock bands since 1976, i.e. Killing Joke, Ministry, PIL, Bauhaus, New Order, Psychedelic Furs, and then getting them produced by Skrillex and Prodigy

Lyrically Anti-Social Network is as biting as ever, something easy to expect from your music, but equally there seems a thicker intimacy to some songs too. Can you give some background to art_RingMasterReviewthe themes of songs and to the album in general?

I have been hoping somebody would ask this, this will be quite extensive but I’ve been longing to go through the album track by track, please feel free to edit this if you want.

  1. Living The Dream

I grew up in a northern town, not a city, and in towns you see people on the local music scene who are the “big cheese”, they walk around like Billy Big Bollocks, they get a little bit of interest from local radio and think all they have to do is move to the big city and world will be the oyster. When the reality is something far different, when you make that leap to pursue your dreams, you have to be prepared for the reality that you are suddenly a shrimp in an ocean of sharks.

  1. Empire

We are very active on social media, especially Twitter, where we have a lot of young followers, and I see their tweets about how in love they are and the next second they are broken hearted. It’s kind of sending the message that broken hearts are only temporary when you’re a teen and that you are going to fall in love many times during your life and that if one relationship doesn’t work out, move on to the next one.

  1. Time To Fight Back

The world and society is pretty much on the brink of imploding; if the majority of us don’t stand up and say, “enough is enough” 1% of the world’s population has 99% of the wealth. There are children dying because they don’t have clean water, how can that be right in 2016?

  1. Hands Up Who Wants To Die?

Is about youth crime and gang violence and how leaving the house with a weapon can lead to a whole heap of consequences due to one thoughtless move

  1. Life As We Know It

This is about envy and how people wish they were somebody else, it’s clichéd but life is what you make of it. If you’re happy in your life, embrace the fact you are happy and celebrate it, if you are not happy, do something about it. Sitting on your ass complaining is never going to improve things, unless you grasp the metal and go for it.

  1. The American Dream

It is not particularly about the US, but as the American Dream has always been held up as a goal for what people can achieve through hard work, I thought it was a good example for society as a whole, and how things have changed from the days that people left school with ambitions of professions or trades. They now want to be YouTubers or famous on Vine, they want fame from zero talent in a narcissistic shallow world.

  1. God Is Dead

God is a metaphor for consumerism; you don’t get consumerism without the word consume and society has become all consumed with the latest product X until they have it, and once they have it, their thirst for the net product X is instantly greater than their joy at getting the latest thing they’ve craved for.

  1. Always Be True

As I mentioned earlier we have a lot of young fans, this is a message to them not to bow to peer pressure. If you don’t like something or don’t want to do something never be afraid to say no, because one day, your day will come.

  1. Look In Your Eye

This is about the cynical people at major labels who only see artists as product and really have no feelings about the long term futures of said artists as long as they have them signed to 360 deals, make a profit and keep themselves in a job

  1. Black World

Is really saying, I don’t have all the answers, but if you listen to what I’m saying in my lyrics and think about them and join us in thinking that the world doesn’t have to be like this, together we can make the world a better place

  1. Divisive

Is about how the media and governments manipulate the news to suit their own agendas. They tell us they are doing it for righteous reasons when it’s all about greed and power and that once you turn to violence it becomes both self-perpetuating and self-defeating; hence the chant of Greed Equals Power Equals War Equals Death repeating almost to infinitum at the end because wars go on and on and only increase the misery.

Do the same things predominantly rile up the lyrical muse or are you adding to the recipe of sparks as years and records pass?

The constant in my psyche is that I don’t like inequalities in society.  I’m not saying that people shouldn’t be rewarded for doing good work or being enterprising but I don’t think people should be forced to live in poverty. I just think people need to keep their eyes open and feel compassion for others, see both sides of every story; never judge people on their race colour creed, religion or lack of it, or their sexual orientation. Judge people on whether they are good people or not. While these things still exist in society, I will maintain my motivation as a lyricist.

Can you give us some insight into the recording of Anti-Social Network; any unexpected dramas and surprises?

There were no real disasters along the way, however it did take way longer than we hoped or expected it would. In all it took 2000 hours to record;, I think that’s maybe on a par with some of the 70’s prog rock bands, but you have to be truly happy with your records as you have to live with them forever once you release them.

CAA_RingMasterReviewFor most artists it is fair to say that playing live is their favourite part of making music. When it comes to writing and recording something though, what is your favourite part or element?

It’s actually when people tell you that they have listened to your record and really got what you’re doing. It’s the greatest feeling in the world to know you are not the only people that think the way you do.

Is there any particular moment in Anti-Social Network which gives you an extra glow of satisfaction?

There are three parts I love; on the intro of Divisive where the combination of guitar drums and keys gives the impression of a weird pitch shift on the drop, it gets me every time. I also love the almost UK Garage drop on the middle 8 of Always Be True, and J’s guitars on Life As We Know that sound like Cellos. But we are very proud of all of it, I honestly believe there are no fillers on the album and that if we released all eleven tracks as singles, we could get radio play on all of them, I could however be delusional.

Tell us about the art work for the album which seems to sum up the air of the great release more and more every time you look at it.

It was amazing, we were trying to come up with ideas, and Paul had googled the word Anti-Social Network and up this came. It’s an actual sculpture by South African artist Maurice Mbiyaki. We contacted him and asked if we could use it on the cover, and he replied “he’d be honoured”; the rest is history. J

What is next in store for CAA fans and the band itself?

We are working on a new live set and will be out and about before too long. Time To Fight Back is set to be released as a single in June with David CAA VIP Remix and a specially recorded cover version.

Big thanks again David for chatting with us; anything you would like to add?

Not really other than a big thanks to you for being so supportive of our releases, we really do appreciate the kind words you have written about us.

And finally, give us an insight into the records and artists which could be claimed to have most inspired your own life and creativity.

Blimey, this is a massive question for me; I think I can nail it down to genres rather than actual acts, I’m very influenced by, Punk, Northern Soul, Goth, Metal, 80’s Hiphop, Synthpop, Industrial, EDM, 90s Indie, Post-Punk, Hardcore, Big Beat, Reggae, Ska, and DnB.

Check out our review of Anti-Social Network @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2016/03/11/calling-all-astronauts-anti-social-network/

http://www.callingallastronauts.com    https://www.facebook.com/CallingAllAstronauts/     https://twitter.com/CAA_Official

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 16/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Smash Fashion – Junkie Luck

smash fashion live_RingMaster Review

Ahead of their eagerly anticipated new album, US rockers Smash Fashion have uncaged a feistily flavoursome teaser in the shape of new single Junkie Luck. It has all the trademarks of the band’s decades bridging rock ‘n’ roll and the rousing mischief fans have come accustomed to and greedy for. It also hints at new flavours in the band’s power fuelled melodic roar ensuring intrigue for their upcoming release is all the more ripe.

Los Angeles bred, Smash Fashion has spent the past decade or so brewing up a sound merged from the raw energy of fifties rock ‘n’ roll, the hungry adventure of sixties psych and garage rock, and essences of punk ‘n’ roll forged ever since. With the salacious scent of glam and the anthemic energy of hard rock amongst other flavours also involved, the quartet create something that defies being pinned down yet has a broad familiarity which swiftly seduces ears and imagination. The creation of and driven by vocalist/guitarist Roger Deering, Smash Fashion has increasingly lured acclaim and eager attention across a trio of albums starting with A Gentlemens Guide to Sophisticated Savagery in 2006. Three years later Don’t Pet The Sweaty Things stirred things up further for the band though it was Big Cat Love in 2014 which sparked the most eager and broadest spotlights yet on both sides of the Atlantic. With a clutch of ear teasing singles and a praise garnering live presence which has seen the band share stages again on both sides of the pond with the likes of Ian Hunter, Arthur Lee and Love, The Zombies, Cheap Trick, Psychedelic Furs, The Alarm, Missing Person, Silversun Pickups, Orson, JET, and The 88 over the years backing up the success of their albums, Smash Fashion has become a greedily devoured band with songs that just make tongues lick lips; the new single Junkie Luck no exception.

smash fashion art_RingMaster ReviewFrom its firs breath Junkie Luck is a rich enticement of guitar, the strings of Deering flirting alongside the sonic lead of Lloyd Stuart Casson (ex- Rock City Angels) before the former’s recognisable and always persuasive vocals potently leads the emergence of the song’s infectious heart. The swinging beats of drummer Repo (ex-Smack) manage to cage and incite further devilment in the song, assisted in kind by the prowling lure of Scarlet Rowe’s bass, both aiding the track’s grip on the listener’s hips and involvement. Musically Junkie Love is like a fiery blend of The Cars, Cheap Trick, Turbonegro, and Sweet with a healthy punk rock attitude but it emerges with a character and uniqueness which roars Smash Fashion.

On the B-side of the single is the boisterous punk ‘n’ roll cover of Golden Earring’s Long Blond Animal, Deering and co giving it fresh attitude for a rousing impact which for personal tastes actually puts the original in the shade just a touch. A song which will not be on the forthcoming album, it alone makes the single more than worthy of being checked out; Junkie Luck itself the thicker temptation urging all to add it to their music collection.

It is probably fair to say that you know what you are going to get with Smash Fashion, a blistering good time with sounds that easily incite body and soul, yet each release to date has only surprised and impressed with its own fresh revelry. There is no reason to expect anything different from the new album, just much more of the fun offered by Junkie Luck.

Junkie Luck is out now via Electric Pudding Recordings on download and on Ltd Ed 7”red vinyl.

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Pete RingMaster 10/02/2016

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Attack The Day – Shadows

Attack The Day_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

If you are hankering to be in on the ground level of something potentially very special then check out Northern Ireland alternative rockers Attack The Day and debut release, the Shadows EP. The six track release is a compelling and striking introduction to the County Fermanagh quintet which, though it is early days, suggests it is the beginning of bigger and bolder things. Ripe with varied flavours and imagination bred twists, its rich persuasion comes stocked with strong ideas which are not always fully realised but persistently spark a hunger for more in ears and appetite.

Formed 2012 in Lisnaskea, Attack The Day completed their line-up two years later with vocalist Dáithí Murphy. Since forming the band has been a constant presence on the local live scene subsequently spreading further afield and adding the sharing of stages with the likes of Cadaver Club, Axecatcher, The DMs, and Making Monsters to their CV as well as a tour with Germans Suddenly Human across Ireland and the UK. The release of Shadows is the next potent step in breaking broader attention, and as it consumes and ignites ears with every listen, success is expected here.

The EP opens with Intro, a minute long piece of guitar shaped coaxing which does not startle but certainly has intrigue and attention to what is following aroused. It slips away to make way for Alive, a track instantly bulging with metal seeded riffs and badgering rhythms within an aggression wash of guitar. The vocals of Murphy step into the mix with a raw and aggressive delivery, his unpolished lure soon enhanced further by additional anthemic contributions elsewhere. Tagged as alternative metal/rock band, band and song soon show they are just as rife with punk confrontation and hardcore tempestuousness as well as an inventive want to infuse other slithers and spices of varied styles.

Shadows Artwork_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review     Boisterously anthemic, the track is matched and swiftly surpassed by Egyptian. More controlled in its entrance, the song quickly prowls ears vocally and musically as the guitars of Mark Cadden and Donavan McBrien cast nagging unrelenting bait with the brooding bass of Ciaran Fitzpatrick growling around them. As the persistence and intimidation of guitars and Shane McGovern’s heavily jabbing beats continue to brew a thick tempting there is no mistaking an early Therapy? feel to the encounter, especially when Cadden spills some potent sonic enterprise into the brewing tempest. The song simply continues to grip as it leads the listener into the even more impressive Divided.

The third song emerges with a post punk coldness to vocals and tone, the dark resonating bass initially the lone provocateur apart from firm beats before just as chilled tendrils of guitar winds around its addictive bait. Like Babyshambles meets Psychedelic Furs, the song gets under the skin with its infectious charm and inventive tenacity. It never explodes into a tsunami of sound and persuasion but leaves a breathless satisfaction in its wake all the same. The song is superb and if using just one offering to make a choice whether to embrace the band or not, it has everything you need to know about their craft, quality, and potential.

So too has the EPs title track to be fair, its Deftones like breath a lingering seducing within a fiery lure of melodies and sonic endeavour, veined by again a captivating rhythmic whipping up of attention. Though it has a feisty energy, the song crawls over the senses, preying on ears and imagination with increasing drama and explosive almost hostile unpredictability and enterprise, climaxing in an Able Archer like roar.

The release closes with This Is How It Ends, McGovern and Fitzpatrick providing a gripping and menacing canvas to which guitars and the increasingly impressive melancholic tones of Murphy lay their potent craft and expression. This time a feel of the Only Ones emerges, though as across the EP, any references spring from a sound and presence distinct to Attack The Day. The song is a swarm of monotone but endearing textures and a tangy grooving of guitar which also has a foot in eighties post punk and nineties alternative metal, it all adding up to something fresh and contagious.

As suggested earlier, there are elements within Shadows which do not go as bravely far enough as they might but with every listen the EP just grows and impresses more. Attack The Day is a presence to make a note of at the very least but recommended to dive into right now so you catch their ascent from its first wind.

The Shadows EP is out now @ https://attacktheday.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Attack-The-Day/164901066967572

RingMaster 19/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

Shark Tape – Marathon

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Filtering the best essences of punk, pop, indie, hard rock and more into their own industrious rock ‘n’ roll revelry, US band Shark Tape is a band which has been creating a buzz of their side of the globe for the past couple of years or so. Now their energetically flavoursome sound is concentrating on stirring up British attention through the UK release of debut album Marathon. A collection of songs as united in contagious enterprise as they are individual in character and imagination, the release is a sure fire incitement to body swerves, broad smiles, and feeling good.

Hailing from Philadelphia, Shark Tape emerged in 2007. They went through various project names before settling on the name we are now embracing. The trio of vocalist/bassist Stephen Lorek, guitarist Niles Weiss, and drummer Dylan Mulcahy released a pair of EPs in 2012, a self-titled debut and Eyes On You which were both well-received with the latter especially earning potent radio play from East Coast radio stations. Late 2013, the band linked up with renowned engineer Jeff Ziegler (Kurt Vile, War On Drugs) to begin working on their first album, Marathon receiving its acclaimed US release last November and now looking at sparking the same enthusiasm in the UK. With a host of inventively crafted songs bound in imaginatively woven sounds, it is easy to assume it is already a done deal in making the strongest persuasion over here too.

Picture 8     The album gets off to a seriously rousing start with Bronco, vibrant riffs and attention causing hooks instantly inescapable bait matched in potency by the varied vocal tones. The guitars jangle and entice right away with flirtatious indie rock endeavour, leading the listener and an already greedy appetite into an addiction forging chorus which swiftly enlists the listener’s vocal help to join their body’s already keen involvement. Like a mix of Weezer and UK band Asylums, the song is unbridled contagion and matched all the way by Marathon’s title track. Unveiling its own unique hooks and melodic temptation, the track has a healthy hard/glam rock urge in its fiery invention amidst another uncontrollable infection for ears and imagination. Totally different in sound it maybe, but song and indeed album not for the last time, shows the same instinctive ability to create hook laden, uncomplicated but precisely woven punk pop as bands like The Undertones and Buzzcocks, and with more encounters like this the potential for a similar status for Shark Tape ahead might be on the cards.

River Runs Deep comes next, opening with an eighties electro rock like welcome, backing it up with harmonious vocals before adding tempering through vivacious shadows from the bass. Swinging beats and more exotic electronic hues bring new colour to the slimline but rich landscape of the song as it grows, and though it cannot quite emulate the previous pair in strength it keeps the flames of satisfaction burning nicely before the more agitated charms of Long Time Coming take over. Lorek’s bass has a delicious dark tone as it brings the song into view, riveting coaxing quickly wrapped in the indie sparkle of guitar and vocals. As its predecessor there is also an essence of eighties colouring, a new wave pop invention infused with a rawer nineties rock pop that works away to create another choice proposal within Marathon.

Slightly mellower but no less compelling, Smell of Sirens provides a vibrant croon of melodic suggestiveness next. There is a sturdy rhythmic frame and emotional nature to it keeping its spatial melodies and airy atmosphere grounded as vocally and lyrically the song unveils its heart. Revealing further depth and strength in the band’s songwriting the track drifts away to be replaced by the captivating Neverlast with its more sombre but relentlessly catchy stroll. It is one of those songs which works away on the listener almost without them realising, making a deeper, more potent impression than first thought to return at will with its hooks and stirring melodies. Both impress but are soon overshadowed by the outstanding roguish presence of Black Panther. Surely bred from a diet of The Ramones and The Clash, the track is mischievous punk pop with robust rhythms and heavy duty bass riffs led by rebellious vocals. Equipped with a searing guitar solo, barb loaded punk hooks, and bracing rock ‘n’ roll tenacity, the track is nonstop anthemic devilment.

   Through the more controlled Runway and straight after Top Rock Seller, band and album continue to ignite ears and thoughts. Though the first of the pair is more restrained than the last song, its resolve is permanently taunted by the predacious bass tones escorting it through ears, its devilish stroll trying to incite greater aggression in energy to match the aggressive imagination of hooks and ideation around it. The second of the two tracks offers a post punk meets shoegaze suggestion initially but soon moves towards a dusty rock presence sporting essences of grunge, melodic rock, and punk. It is a fascinating mix which has you searching for references to its flavours, Psychedelic Furs one hinting thought, but basically coming up with little by the time it is replaced by the excellent Silly Things. Its successor explores a similar tapestry of ideation but is a more sinister and heavily darker proposition; one pierced by shards of harmonic and melodic light amidst surf seeded sonic spicing.

The album is brought to a close by the acoustically sculpted Dying to Know, a song which from its minimal seeds blossoms into a fascinating web of rhythmic traps and sonic enterprise within an orchestra driven evocative breeze. The song is glorious, a final fanfare for the invention and craft of the band in writing and invention.

With highlights which reach classic song standards and lesser successes that most other albums would cry out for, Marathon is one of those treats all rock fans need in their lives. Remember how excited you got when you first heard bands like Weezer, The Smiths, and Wheatus, well you might just find yourself getting those self-same tingles again thanks to Shark Tape and their debut album.

Marathon is available now @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/marathon/id937432092 or http://sharktape.bandcamp.com/album/marathon

https://www.facebook.com/SharkTape

RingMaster 15/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net