Caustic Minds – Black Oil For A Soul

With a rather potent reputation in tow courtesy of their highly energetic live performances, alternative rock outfit Caustic Minds has a certain buzz brewing up around them and one sure to be only accelerated by the recent release of the band’s debut EP. Five tracks strong, Black Oil For A Soul is quite simply an encounter which makes you just stop and pay attention.

Formed in Germany in 2007, Berlin based Caustic Minds has a background as rich as their sound. Vocalist Laura Jiménez Alvarez comes from Mexico City, while guitarist Daniel Viseras Calvache is Granada in Spain hailing. With bassist Michiel Sybers born in Antwerpen, Belgium and drummer Chris Crabtree British/German bred, it is a cosmopolitan mix as flavoursome as the blend of hard rock and indie enticement they conjure up between them. Over time the band has had references to the likes of Queens Of The Stone Age, The Dead Weather, Arctic Monkeys, and Black Sabbath shared upon their sound though for our ears Black Oil For A Soul tantalises and captivates like a hybrid fusion of Karn8 and My Baby.

Persistently compelling in its enterprise and bold in its character, the EP immediately had ears and imagination enslaved with opener Eyes On Fire. Never relinquishing its favourite track grip from its first escapade, the song instantly harries and tempts with a stalking fusion of stabbing beats and siren scythes of guitar. Instantly magnetic, the track only escalates its lures as a swagger breaks out in a sure stroll ridden by the similarly captivating tones of Alvarez. With a groove which infests hips without invitation and an instinctive roar that demands unity, the imagination soaked track easily gripped body and appetite.

Though for personal tastes the release never quite reached those major heights again, its presence and enterprise is a lofty adventure that continues to beguile, next up Baby Doll providing a fiery blaze of punk shaped rock ‘n’ roll with progressive breath to its winds as melodic seduction fuels its great unpredictability.

Similarly Destroyer teased and taunted the imagination; its immediate launch part prowl part strut and all fascination. Intoxicating in its bluesy charm and eye balling in its attitude, the temptress of a song proved another irresistible holler which never fed expectations before Blacklist brought its own beguiling lures to the party. Rising on spirals of sonic and melodic heat, the track is another which teases as it tempts. Like flames in a fire stirring thoughts and gripping attention as its spellbinding hold sprung creative shapes the song simply flirted with the imagination as vocals and individual enterprise trapped ears.

The EP closes up with Carry On, another moment within the EP that enthralled with ease as its seductive moves and shameless grooves toyed alongside the ever compelling barracuda toned bass of Sybers. As each track and the EP as a whole, the closer is all sensuous bait and steamy endeavour honed into rock ‘n’ roll that shamelessly and skilfully entices and firmly attracts.

Black Oil For A Soul more than suggests that the boisterous murmur around Caustic Minds is sound and about to boil over beyond the German borders the band is already putting under their spell and as a bonus ‘name your own price’ release on the band’s Bandcamp site, it is one encounter no one should be ignoring.

Black Oil For A Soul is available now @ https://causticminds.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/causticminds/

Pete RingMaster 29/07/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Dark Stares – The Lightning Echo

Darkly haunting and persistently mesmeric, The Lightning Echo is the new album from UK rockers Dark Stares. The successor to their acclaimed debut, Darker Days Are Here to Stay, the new release provides twelve tracks which lure the listener and imagination into the realm between warm and portentous dreams; each a siren of intimation and reflection which enjoyably proved rather hard to escape.

St Albans hailing, Dark Stares has been a persistent captivation from their early tracks and EPs such as Octopon and Soul Contract through to that creatively potent first full-length of last year. Looking back to Darker Days Are Here to Stay, there is no doubt that The Lightning Echo is the natural progression to its predecessor but equally it has evolved its own fascination and unique character of sound; a nagging seduction which wraps the senses like a crepuscular animal.

The album immediately strides through ears with You Know Me, the track’s high kneed beats stamping authority on attention as the fuzz bred grooves of Harry Collins wind around them and the equally magnetic tones of vocalist Miles Kristian Howell. From the single song alone it is easy to hear why Queens Of The Stone Age is often used as a comparison though there is no escaping the singular identity of the Dark Stares sound either.

The highly rousing start is prolonged by the similarly anthemic Dance, a tenacious command on the body bound in the dark climes of surf/desert rock. Again the imposing yet contagious lure of Brett Harland Howell’s bass and Taylor Howell’s spirited beats manipulate song and listener, the Middle Eastern lures cast by Collin’s guitar quite irresistible in one of the album’s major peaks.

Next up Spell You’ve Cast is a similarly beguiling temptress if a slightly sinistrous one, its body a writhing tease of grooves and enticing vocals across almost predatory rhythms while the following Crusader brings a dustier desert rock landscaped croon with volatility in its rich fertile earth. Each made for a riveting proposition if the first with fiercer temptation as too Mr Midnight with its rapacious crawl and tantalising menace. As those around it, the magnificent encounter spins a web of flavour and suggestion sparking imagination and appetite for its tenebrific charm and bait.

There is something of a Doors meets Muse shimmer to The Shadows and Faceless Man, the first with its mercurial climate and compelling sonic grumble breeding sheer dark captivation and through the second wrapping an emotive melodic shroud around ears before breaking out into its pensive musing. Sandwiched between them is Today, a song edging more firmly to the sixties psychedelia of Morison and co. and though it does not quite match up to those alongside one that only grips attention and enjoyment.

After them, In My Pocket initially shimmers before catching flame, repeating its persuasive melodic cycle with greater intensity as Zedi Forder-esque hues bring earnest breath to the increasingly compelling encounter while in turn intrigue soaked and with disquieting glamour Misty Lanes makes its potent play for best track honours.

The album concludes with the radiantly rapacious saunter of Dead and Gone and lastly the hearty rock ‘n’ roll of Rebel Angel. Both tracks hit the spot with the first another simply adding to the numerous reasons as to why The Lightning Echo should not be ignored.

Easily The Lightning Echo is the finest moment with Dark Stares to date, one which for us only gets more thrilling and addictive by the listen.

The Lightning Echo is out across most stores May 31st.

https://www.darkstares.com/   https://www.facebook.com/DarkStares/   https://twitter.com/dark_stares

Pete RingMaster 30/05/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Desert Clouds – Nothing Beyond The Cage

It is probably fair to say that we did not make an immediate connection with the new album from UK based rockers Desert Clouds yet there was a certain lure which took us back to its atmospheric embrace with intrigue and enthusiasm. It was an essence which grew richer as band and release, Nothing Beyond The Cage, blossomed by the listen into a fascinating and increasingly persuasive proposition.

Formed in 2008 in Naples, Italy, Desert Clouds relocated to London two years later. It was a time which saw instability in the band’s line-up though things were far more settled by the time 2017 EP, Time Distortions, was released; an encounter which drew strong attention the way of the band, praise carrying interest which was only built upon by subsequent singles in Speed of Light and Under Tons, both unveiled last year. It is easy to imagine that Nothing Beyond The Cage will only increase the reputation and stature of the quartet within the UK rock scene with its multi-flavoured and atmospherically provocative adventure.

Nurtured in a mix of grunge, stoner, doom, psych and alternative rock, the band’s sound is a seductive trespass as forceful and mercurial as it is plaintively intimate and brooding. Often it comes over within Nothing Beyond The Cage like a raw Doors meets a predacious Kyuss aligned to the emotive howls of early Coldplay amidst the soulful winds of Soundgarden but emerging if not boldly unique certainly clearly individual to Desert Clouds.

The album opens up with The Outcast Trail (See you Chris), a sullenly thoughtful ballad built on a web of melodic imagination and vocal emotion which roars like a funeral pyre in fiery crescendos. Unsurprisingly there are thick Soundgarden hues to the outstanding track, a tribute to Chris Cornell, with its sonic and emotive heat evocative and invasive, its enterprise seriously magnetic led by the inescapably compelling vocals.

The following Speed Of Light opens with a just as dark air, the bass of Julius Caesar a portentous throb within the wiry web and earthier riffs of guitarists/vocalists David Land and Val L. Wallace. With every passing note and vocal lure, the song’s intensity and drama increases, brewing up into a controlled yet feral blaze spiked by the predacious beats of Andrea Orabona. Though it lacked the spark of its outstanding predecessor for our appetite, the song enticed and lingered behind its wake before next up Take Off harassed the senses with its moody almost irritable melodic roar. Grooved tendrils vine the track with increasing captivation, their incandescent lures lava-esque within the song’s muggy climate.

The calmer but mercurial balladry of Under Tons tempts next, its tenacious croon as untamed as it is intimately restrained with every moment contrasted within another twist courtesy of craft and imagination before Overmore springs its desert/psych rock exploits on ears. A certain QOTSA lining adds to a swift appeal while its successor The Judgement carries a Coldplay/Muse like spicing which grew more flavoursome by the listen. All three tracks flourished over time whilst equally sharing the, at times understated but certainly not hidden, broad palette of sound the band creates with.

Final track is Whistling In The Rain, an almost bestial encounter in its prowling gait and ursine-esque growl but lava-like in its sonic climate and scorching winds. From vocals to guitar, rhythms to atmospheric conjuring, the song is another mighty highlight to Nothing Beyond The Cage, a release which we might have needed time to take to but have with real eagerness once we clicked.

Nothing Beyond The Cage is released January 18th.

https://www.desertclouds.net/   https://www.facebook.com/desertclouds/   https://twitter.com/TheDesertClouds

Pete RingMaster 17/01/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Feral Young – I Haven’t Seen Myself in a While

Untamed, wild, and aggressive to the point of bloodthirsty at times…you would expect little else from a proposition called The Feral Young. Theirs is a sound within their new offering which ferociously devours the senses yet equally a predator adept at prowling the listener like a sonic wolf waiting to move in for the kill. It is a character and intent which goes to make the I Haven’t Seen Myself in a While EP one menacingly striking encounter and The Feral Young a band very hard to ignore.

Hailing from Finland’s oldest city, Turku, The Feral Young unleash a voracious fusion of punk and noise rock also embracing rich scuzzy essences from the likes of garage and stoner rock. Formed in 2017, the band has drawn references to the likes of Every Time I Die, Metz, Whores, and Queens of the Stone Age but as I Haven’t Seen Myself in a While reveals theirs is a sound already discovering its particular individuality, a uniqueness already growing since its predecessor, last year’s Failures EP.

I Haven’t Seen Myself in a While swiftly trespasses the senses with opener The Beat, its initial guitar graze of sound an enticing lure into a thick wall of temptation driven by primal beats as a raw sonic ‘hum’ escorts their predation. The equally nagging threat of the heavy bass throb adds to the intoxicating menace ears and appetite quickly fell too, earnest vocal squalls completing the rich bait making a delicious intrusion. Like a call to arms, a piper to primal instincts, the track sets the EP off on a major high.

It is a lofty perch which Amnesia Alibi cements; its raucous noise punk mixing with psych shimmers and surf ripples in an undulating eddy of snarling incitement. Again rhythms simply ensnare as melodic toxicity and vocal incitement bait, the track mercurial if always invasive in its attack but relentless in its creative and inventive savagery. It is another major temptation to The Feral Young sound so easy to succumb to.

The EP’s title track completes the encounter, the song a relatively kinder assault but as fiery and drenched in unbroken spirit and attitude as its companions. The band’s more garage rock instincts come to the fore in a roar sharing the same kind of punk instincts as artists such as The Punks and The Stooges mixed with the ferocious enterprise of others like Whores and Pigs. Though not quite matching the massive heights of its predecessors, the track is a rousing blaze escalating the impressive and thrilling outcry of the release.

With new music in our ears almost without breaks being excited is a regular treat, finding ourselves lustily animated a far rarer occurrence but one The Feral Young inspired with ease. Roll on the album the band is said to be currently unleashing from their undomesticated hearts.

I Haven’t Seen Myself in a While is out now digitally and on Ltd Ed 7” vinyl via Kaos Kontrol; available @ https://kaoskontrol.bandcamp.com/album/i-havent-seen-myself-in-a-whilehttp://www.kaos-kontrol.org/shop/the-feral-young-i-havent-seen-myself-in-a-while-7-inch

https://www.facebook.com/theferalyoung   https://www.instagram.com/theferalyoungsucks/

Pete RingMaster 03/11/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Watch Rome Burn – Vox Heretic

Seattle has been one of the most refreshing conveyor belts of musical pleasures over the decades and shows no signs of slowing down as from its dirtiest grunge punk depths it brings us the inimitable sound of Watch Rome Burn. The two brother outfit has just uncaged their new album and it has swiftly become something we for one cannot get enough of.

Last year the pair of guitarist/vocalist Drew and drummer Jestyn Cummings lured eager plaudits with Now on VHS, an attention grabbing encounter laying the seeds for the rapacious roar of its successor Vox Heretic. The new release escalates the dirty crust-esque punk aspect of its predecessor but equally embroils itself in the grunge and alternative rock side of that first proposition but drawing on the rawest breath and predacious intent of both to leave the former laying in its dust.

Vox Heretic immediately had ears and imagination hooked as a sonic drawl brought opener Consumed into view. Its broiled shimmer in turn triggered a rhythmic prowl aligned to an equally skulking vocal prowess, all the time that sonic dissonance pulsating. Never particularly deviating from its initial intent but rich in intimation, the track is superb; pure creative devilry setting up the promise and adventure of things to come.

The following Thief is soon into its carnal swing, its unapologetically raw air and flesh instantly magnetic and bawling away with proto punk causticity. As with the first, there is an inherent catchiness which had the body bouncing even when tempered by the song’s feral garage rock belligerence. Abrasive and bracing, the track just hit the spot as too unerringly did next up Motley. Like a mix of a proto punk Queens Of the Stone Age meets the hungry rock ‘n’ roll of The Sea, the song is another predatory trespass which simply aroused body and spirit.

On The March flares up with an industrial hue next but is soon into a rock ‘n’ roll stride with Jestyn’s rhythms manipulating song and listener as Drew further incites both with his electric intrusion and vocal dexterity. Imagine a punk ‘n’ roll Therapy? and you get a whiff of the outstanding stomp.

The duo showed they can glow with undiluted melodic enterprise too, though Crystallized straight after equally has a fried haze to its coruscating glow while with Be What You Want they caused inescapable addiction. Its caped crusader tinted swing instantly got under the skin, vocal enticement adding to the potency as similarly the wired almost uptight grooves which escape the strings of Drew’s guitar.

The release is brought to a delicious close by firstly War Blues, a track surely bred from illicit blues stills hidden in the shadows of the band’s home city. Its melodic liquor is intoxicating punk blues soaked in the contagion which flavours every track within Vox Heretic; a blend which had the body worked like a puppet before things are finally concluded by the melodic seduction of Up Here. Uncluttered but as rich in flavour as you would wish, the song is a captivating sundown on the album, a final surf kissed glow and sigh which only lures ears right back into the release.

Vox Heretic is Watch Rome Burn knocking on major attention, a door which surely cannot stay closed much longer against the indisputable roar and often corrosive but ever alluring raw charm of their sound.

Vox Heretic is out now and available @ https://watchromeburn.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/jointheburnlegion/

 Pete RingMaster 22/09/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Smash Fashion – Rompous Pompous

With a mere but rather tasty single in between, it has been a long wait for the successor to their highly enjoyable and highly praised third album Big Cat Love but finally US rockers Smash Fashion have unleashed its successor in the shape of Rompous Pompous and a devilishly mischievous and captivating proposition it is.

Eagerly anticipated, the album lives up to its excellent title with eleven slices of multi-flavoured rock ‘n’ roll which romp and stomp in a way only the La quartet can. As ever the band feeds on rich rock essences from across the decades; everything from fifties rock ‘n’ roll, sixties mod and psychedelia through to seventies punk/new wave aligned to eighties glam and hard rock going to flavour a sound just as spiced by subsequent years and modern enterprise. As its predecessor, Rompous Pompous is an adventurous and lustily fun stomp with the band but with even keener diversity and a sharper definition to its writing, performance, and character.

It opens up with Can’t Take You Anywhere and straight away a potent hook with something more than familiar to it keenly entices. It is just a lure though into the song’s own invention with the vocals of guitarist and band founder Roger Deering swiftly to the fore. Its classic rock breeding is littered with new wave and seventies pop rock flirtation, the tenacious rhythms of bassist Scarlet Rowe and drummer Reijo “Repo” Kauppila driving its boisterous stroll as lead guitarist Lloyd Stuart Casson weaves real temptation within the just as magnetic tease of keys.

It is a potent start to the release ensuring attention is firmly on board and equally strong as the following Soft As A Rock (Helium Head) takes its place with an air of Cheap Trick meets The Motors to it. Its infectiousness is swift and eager as hooks join grooves in casting a net of catchy enterprise around Deering’s ever alluring presence while within the album’s following title track the band pulls the listener in with a fifties rock ‘n’ roll nurtured saunter with a delicious B52’s-esque lilt to its blossoming revelry. The track is superb also hinting at the respective glam/art and hard rock of bands like Sparks and The Tubes as it caught ears and imagination.

Wolves Of Wonderland brings a blues flavouring with its steady hard rock canter next with not for the first time just a sniff of Queens Of The Stone Age to the melodic graining while Teenage Demon is a punk ‘n’ roll courting holler with a garage rock lining which swiftly had feet and neck muscles rocking. Again there is no missing a seventies/eighties seeded nature to the excellent track; a regular ingredient in the increasingly individual Smash Fashion sound.

Another putting a firm hand on best track honours is the Bolan-esque Proper Way To Eat A Muffin, its flirtatious almost salacious swing aligned to classic rock ‘n’ roll equipped with power pop boisterousness and lyrical devilment. Quickly and unerringly hitting the spot it had the body eagerly swinging before Runs In The Family adds further diversity to the release with its pop, punk and melodic rock collusion with a great resemblance to The Vapors to it. It too is one of the major highlights within Rompous Pompous closely matched by the Bowie kissed Tender Was The Hook, a song also embracing a sixties tone with a Hollies like scent to it.

Through the likes of the blues rock sprung Ugly Thugly and Gentle Hand with its slightly dirty melodic radiance around one irresistible hook, the album continued to light up ears even if neither song quite lived up to the heights of those before them. Nevertheless each left thorough enjoyment in their wake leaving the emotive balladry of Smiles & Daggers to bring the album to a fine close. Beginning with drama carrying piano with big shadow clad rhythms in close company, an entrance reminding of a certain Boomtown Rats classic, the song is a magnetic example of the more mature and bolder songwriting within the album. As all songs, deeper into its body you go more the different flavours and twists emerge to please and fascinate.

And that applies to Rompous Pompous as a whole, a release which gets you going from the off and just gets more intoxicating and infamous by the listen, much like Smash Fashion themselves.

Rompus Pompous is out now via Electric Pudding Recordings across most online stores.

 http://www.smashfashionmusic.com/   https://www.facebook.com/smashfashion

Pete RingMaster 14/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Nine Dart Finish – The Misadventures of…

Nine Dart Finish is a British outfit drawing on the wide influences of the likes of Weezer, Supergrass, Queen, and Ian Dury for their pop fuelled rock ‘n’ roll; The Misadventures of… is their debut album which unapologetically has the body bouncing as fun floods every pour of its magnetic enterprise. The trio from Birmingham has already lured potent attention from fans and media alike with a handful of singles especially potent; appetites for their boisterous sound which their first album can only multiply.

Consisting of former Coffeeshop member in lead vocalist/bassist Daz Yardley, guitarist/vocalist Christopher Mobbs, and drummer Andy Proudman, Nine Dart Finish first drew ears with debut EP Fall To Pieces late 2015. Since then their hook loaded pop ‘n’ rock has grown and become more creatively mischievous by the song. The Misadventures of… brings all the enticing dynamics and lusty grooves of the band’s sound as well as those devilish hooks the threesome seems to instinctively conjure together in one rousing enjoyable place.

Bringing the lively antics of recent singles, highlights of that first EP and new tracks together in one captivating union, The Misadventures of… roars into view with the outstanding The Cut of Your Jib. The track is wild rock ‘n’ roll, almost feral in its energy as riffs and rhythms harry ears just as eager vocals blaze. As the album continues it is easy to see why certain tracks were chosen and potent as singles and teases for the full-length but for personal tastes it is tracks like the raucous rock bred opener which trapped the keenest attention and passions. With a touch of Queens of the Stone Age to its contagious tempest, the track is a garage rock lined clamour getting the album off to a magnificent start.

The following Fall to Pieces is a far calmer proposition as a melodic jangle colludes with vocal harmonies before the track settles into its warm catchy swing. There is no preventing the quick shuffle of feet to its stroll, keys adding to its summery scent as vocals and melodies entangle before In the City uncages its own rock ‘n’ roll flame. Within its slightly rawer attack, hooks tease and tempt as riffs nag, Proudman’s beats striking with relish as they drive the infectious escapade.

Recent single Kicking & Screaming is next, a song which blossomed by the listen as its organic rumble aligns to melodic enticement. The former gives the otherwise gentle seduction a volatility which imposes without truly erupting, a combination gripping ears within a grunge pop like proposal while Charlie Bonkers offers up a melody woven slice of Brit Pop nurtured enterprise. It is fair to say that the song did not impact as potently as those around it on our tastes yet as honest to admit it had the hips swinging and vocal chords playing without any trouble.

You Don’t Bother Me similarly did not quite grab as strongly as many of its companions with its sixties hued pop but again involvement in its enticement was unavoidable as with the blues kissed rock of Falling for You. Both tracks epitomises the band’s knack at weaving varied and seriously catchy adventures though each is swiftly overshadowed by the album’s finest moment consisting of its final three songs.

From its initial melodic caresses Fabio’s Overture blossoms into a truly mesmeric slice of pop rock, emotive strands in voice and sound entangling another lure of virulent catchiness as inescapable whether the song is ablaze or simply smouldering. Its thick enticement leads into the rousing devilry of You’re so Cool. As again pop floods its bold rock ‘n’ roll, the track nags and taunts attention with relish. With something of UK duo The Sea about it, the track is superb rivalling the opener for best song honours though they are equally matched by the tenacious stomp of album closer London. There is a certain mod like hue to the song which only adds to its outstanding character and roar.

Though as mentioned there are some tracks which undoubtedly eclipsed others for us, The Misadventures of… is one thoroughly enjoyable involvement from start to finish. Nine Dart Finish have a sound with open growth in every new song so expect many more lustily fun times ahead as well as right now with their new offering.

The Misadventures of… is out now through iTunes and other stores.

http://ninedartfinish.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/NDFmusic/   https://twitter.com/ndfmusic

Pete RingMaster 17/07/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright