Kobadelta – Remain Distracted EP

kobelta

Having been enthralled by their rousing EP, The Hidden Door earlier this year, there was keen anticipation waiting for the release of its successor Remain Distracted. Both EPs come from the creative minds and resourceful imagination of UK band Kobadelta, and each provides a fascinating climate of sound and excitement to greedily immerse within. Remain Distracted takes the strengths and potency of its predecessor into new emotive and adventurous sonic flights, pushing the potential and emerging presence of the band into riveting and sultry landscapes. In some ways it is a slow burner compared to the last release but through a quartet of fiery and seductive songs, sets down the most potent and heady pinnacle from the band yet.

The release of Remain Distracted comes in a potent year for the Newcastle quintet which has seen them chosen to play Newcastle’s Evolution Emerging festival, as well as Stockton Weekender (with Happy Mondays and Public Enemy headlining) and Split Festival (with Maximo Park, The Cribs and Dizzee Rascal). Added to that there has also been a live session for BBC Introducing as well as numerous successful shows with bands like Allusondrugs. The new release adds another strong moment in the band’s year and one more irresistible enticement to develop a rich hunger over.

As soon as the sultry stroke of guitar from Alex Malliris opens up first track Siam, there is a potent temptation at work, its smouldering yet ripe lure a swift caress and announcement of the dark psychedelic invention the band is already acclaimed for. Another breath sees the hypnotic throaty basslines of Jon Marley join the evolving enticement of the guitar and the enterprising rhythmic framing of Chris Malliris. It is a glorious flame brought further to life by the mellow yet nicely raw tones of vocalist Dom Noble, all this against the already tantalising weave of melodic expression cast by the keys of Jordan Robson. It is a stunning track, elements of The Doors colluding with other whispers of bands like early The Horrors, 13th Floor Elevators, and Thee Exciters in an original fire of sound equipped with infectiously imposing hooks and grooves.

Repetition steps up next and instantly finds a heavier growl to its riffs, though that weight is not quite transferred to the crisp beats and elegant bassline. That restraint on some aspects and the mix of dark and light within the song works kobadelta epa treat all the same; its steady but feisty canter evolving through a sultry slow flight of immersive keys before breaking back with increasing tenacity in energy and attack. The Birthday Party like song is an intriguing shadow blessed proposition, not as dramatically gripping as its predecessor but growing into another absorbing and incendiary involvement of the imagination and emotions.

Its successor is less slow in gripping the passions, They Can’t Hurt Me floating in on another delicious almost sinister bassline. Its dark tone inspires a haunting essence to the minimalistic melody of the guitar and vocal croon of Noble, the merger offering a noir wrapped sultriness in presence and sound. There is a definite Cramps essence to the song as well as that of Jim Morrison and co, as well as hints of Damn Vandals and The Dropper’s Neck, but with an ingenious addiction sparking bait from bass and guitar aligned to similarly anthemic beats, the track is a slice of brilliance distinct to Kobadelta and their greatest song yet since forming.

The EP is closed by The Heretic, a sizzling sway of sonic causticity and melodic temptation driven by a swaggering rhythmic and riff crafted enterprise. As in other songs there is a prime hook which is inescapable for ears and passions, its coaxing leading the senses into the scorching haze of guitar and atmospheric heat of the keys. With the delivery of Noble again parading the song’s narrative with an unfussy but magnetically expressive texture, the song is a mesmeric consumption of the senses and a fine end to another impressive release from Kobadelta.

The band just gets better and better as evidenced by Remain Distracted ensuring whatever comes next from Kobadelta will be met with greedy anticipation.

The Remain Distracted EP is available from September 26th @ http://kobadelta.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Kobadelta/

RingMaster 26/09/2014

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Senser – Biting Rhymes

As a prequel to their forthcoming fifth album and a sure fire key to get the juices of anticipation going, metal hip hop crusaders Senser release their Biting Rhymes EP on Nov 27th via Imprint Music. The release is a five track compilation of unique covers of hip hop classics from artists that inspired and influenced them, the UK rap metalers giving their homage to the makers of the music that lined and filled their lives and journey into becoming Senser. The band themselves say in the press release for the EP, “This is really the music most of us grew up with, to us early Hip Hop represents a parallel with folk music, or the Jazz standards – a lexicon of classics” 

    Bringing three brand new covers, a remastered all time favourite of the band and a remastered live cut, Biting Rhymes shows affection and respect for the originals whilst being steeled with Senser’s distinct and powerful essences to result in a release that will satisfy rap and metal fans alike. There is a recent move from bands it seems to bring out releases with a spattering of covers of songs from their strong influences with recent offerings from As I Lay Dying and Whitechapel springing to mind, but there are not many that hit the mark as acutely and impressively as on Biting Rhymes. To be honest there was a little caution before going into the EP, a ‘more covers? Sigh!’ mentality, but as soon as the opening track states its purpose and unveils its quality the reticence is replaced as guilt for not trusting Senser and their hearts.  

The three new covers consist of ‘Don’t Believe The Hype’ (Public Enemy), ‘Follow The Leader’ (Erik B & Rakim), and ‘Mama Said Knock You Out’ (LL Cool J). The first of the three opens up the EP with the band bringing a faithful and beefed up interpretation of the original through a stalking deep bassline which skirts around and through the track instilling the strong intent they bring to all their original sounds. Senser actually sound very much like 90’s UK band Honky on the song with the vocals of Heitham Al sayed and the songs eager groove. The third of the trio ripples with attitude and belligerence, the song standing sure footed in front of the ear, chest beating and throwing its weight around. Again the track is a more muscular version of the original, the band bringing their own distinct flavouring in equal measure to their respectful use of the original sounds.

Those two songs are split by the release’s best track ‘Follow The Leader’. With a darker intent and rippling menace the song is immense, and whereas elsewhere the songs offered are on a virtual even par with their sources here Senser outshine the original easily. Even watching the classic gangster video from Erik B & Rakim at the same time as playing Senser’s version of the song, it pales in comparison to the intensity the UK sextet infuse into the track.

The release is completed by firstly ‘Channel Zero’  (Public Enemy) a song the band has adored and brought to their live shows since the beginning, the samples from Slayer’s ‘Angel Of Death’ that vein the track an easy fit with Senser’s own metal strengths. The song is noted by the band as being one of the most important tracks in the band’s development into being and there is a sure extra energy from the band within it that backs that statement up. The track carries the trademark Senser heavy slashing guitar sound and aggressive rap vocals and instantly is a fit to the Stacked Up album era.

Looking Down The Barrel Of A Gun’ (Beastie Boys) finishes the EP, a live track taken from way back in 1994 from a gig at Reading University. Despite its age the song still sounds fresh and is a pretty faithful version that raises the spirits even if matching The Beastie Boys is impossible, for anyone.

     Biting Rhymes is a great and extremely enjoyable collection of sounds and insight into Senser’s strong acknowledgement to their inspirations and loves. It is also a fine teaser and the trigger for the eager anticipation for their album to go into overdrive.

RingMaster 19/11/2011

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