dragSTER – Anti – Everything

UK punksters dragSTER pretty much hinted at themselves as being one of the country’s most irresistible snarls from day one; establishing and reinforcing that reputation and stature by each release and show. Three years after seriously stirring the punk scene with their album, Dead Punks, the Coventry quintet return with their fourth full-length, an encounter which roars that dragSTER is not only one of punk’s best antagonists but one of its essential and maybe crucial.

Anti – Everything is middle finger raised irritable, anthemically aggressive, and unapologetically rousing with the most deviously seductive web of lethal hooks and corruptive grooves within its roar. If perfection can exist, the album courts its embrace from start to finish, unleashing prize heart bred punk ‘n’ roll as invasively imaginative as it is ferociously instinctive. If its predecessor was a ‘punk classic’ in our words, Anti – Everything is rock ‘n’ roll alchemy; simply one inspiring blaze of organic punk devilry.

One Bad Cop opens things up, its initial raw breath swiftly infested with the album’s first delicious lure, a teasing hook which is emboldened as the track erupts around Fi Dragster’s ever tempting vocals. With threat to its air and stride, the track is under the skin in seconds; its tetchiness echoed in the enterprise of guitarists Diesel and Ben Kelly and equally rhythms which just incite physical confrontation.

It is an exhilarating start which still manages to be eclipsed by the outstanding Damned. Instantly its marching groove gripped already eager ears, its scuzzy bristling pure contagion loaded manna for the punk appetite. The flirtatious beats of Ryan Murphy gleefully add to the persuasion as too the dirty tempting of Tom AK’s bass which soon inspires the filthy glaze which blossoms as the song erupts without losing or defusing its crucial lures. Keys temper yet equally enhance the crotchety nature of the track; a character trait exploited by individual enterprise with it all boiling over in a mighty corruption of a chorus.

The following Burn It Clean uncages its own dispute of rousing rock ‘n’ roll to similarly irresistible effect, Fi a magnetic protagonist challenging and roaring within the track’s fractious stomp while the album’s title track in turn unleashes its own caustic holler to fire up body and attitude. Both tracks are pure manipulation, primal and designed, matching the glory of their predecessors and United Decay which erupts from its industrial bed with Kelly’s juicy groove and Diesel’s hungry riffs. With more restraint to its testy character but devious in its creative corruptions, the track is one imposingly tempting anthem though to be honest one such taunt among thirteen such compelling snares.

Through the short bruising hard rock meets garage punk holler of Spit It Out and the even briefer punk assault of Drone Pilots ears are lustfully infested, harassed and pleasured, subsequently inflamed yet again by Vultures Circle. It too reveals a fusion of varied rock ‘n’ roll flavours within its inflamed challenge, the song predacious but more a stalking of the senses than an incursion as it reveals yet another shade in the band’s broadest palette of sound yet.

It is a fresh tapestry added to as the likes of the ridiculously infectious Tokyo Joe, a slice of old school punk refreshed and re-invigorated, and Charmed To The Teeth with its similar if dirtier choleric incitement seduces body and vocal chords into vociferous participation. The latter of the pair also highlights the new adventure in the band’s songwriting and sound, twisting with unpredictable and teasing imagination.

The final trio of tracks ensure the album continues and ends on the same high nurtured so far, Dark Roulette cantankerous punk ‘n’ roll with its own line in viral hooks and melodic touchiness while Enemies just bullies and seduces eager participation with its prickly, short fuse rock ‘n roll with again a highly agreeable ’77 scent.

Broken By Design concludes the herd of viral riots, its irascible collusion of punk edginess and melodic seducing a final riveting and seriously arousing invitation to rise up; a track rich in bait and heart built with desire and instinct to stir things up. It is a striking, animated close to an album reeking craft and passion soaked in anthemic adventure.

There have been a few punk offerings which have truly inspired bands and fans alike over the past decades, Anti – Everything has just put forward its proposal to join their ranks.

Anti – Everything is out now through Louder Than War Records; available digitally, on CD and vinyl @ https://dragsteruk.bandcamp.com/album/anti-everything

http://www.dragsteronline.com/   https://www.facebook.com/dragSTERUK/    

Pete RingMaster 11/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Living in the flames of Vaya

“Her spirit is screaming and blowing on the stage. She is the drums and her soul rises up through the sacred fire of music.”

This is a line from the Vaya biography on social media which sums up the creative and instinctive roar of the Canadian singer and band, and reason enough to find out more which we recently did with great thanks to the trio…

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started?

Victoria VAYA: Actual VAYA’s members Raphael, Philippe and me have met through this project step by step. First I met “by hazard” Raphaël through a “next door” music shop, when I had just moved into this area. The people talked about him, he is a good drummer so I contacted him. And Philippe joined us when the album was recorded and when we need to build a team for the live shows. I think he just answered to the music call. It was written. Then we are managing the stage from one year sharing the same powerful feeling for the rock music and eclectic colours if it.

RAPHAEL: Hi RingMaster, Victoria VAYA learned that I played the drums from a music store in Gland (CH). One day, she called me to record the first drums of VAYA. I never left since!

Have you been or are involved in other bands? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

Victoria VAYA: Yes I was. It was totally different. It was interesting but I was always feeling that is not my all expression in it. It was good experiences for the studio record part than the stage but I felt not complete. Now with VAYA, I really have so much pleasure to express all that animal and mystical energy through sounds and rhythms: it’s magic!

Philippe: Yes, actually I’m involved in 4 different bands: 1 funk, jazz, fusion band, 1 country blues folk band, of course Vaya and I’m starting a new jazz, salsa, samba band with another guitar player and we’re looking for other musicians too. 4 years ago, I played in a Celtic rock band and a blues rock band too. It’s very different than what I played in my former bands and in my actual bands but it’s interesting to combine those different styles and I always try to adapt myself in every situations.

RAPHAEL: I have been involved in many bands before. Now, I mainly focus on VAYA. Meeting other musicians with influences from all over the world has always been a positive and constructive impact on my drums’ play.

What inspired the band name?

Victoria VAYA:  AHAHAH I like this question. GOD? Or the Blow of it. As artists we just receive the flow of ideas around and translating it. So VAYA is the Legend of The White Wolf blowing on Earth. Ameridian people know more than us about the spirit of it but for sure it’s guiding and inspiring VAYA step by step. Something spiritual and for sure human.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Victoria VAYA: Specific Idea? I don’t know. We are guided between intuition, talent combined and lot of passion and work time. So our sound is colourful and the most important, authentic.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced and how would you say your sound has evolved over time?

Victoria VAYA: We are “Evolution” by defining human being. We are simply always bounded by sharing our musician souls everywhere in the world.

Philippe: Yes we evolved a lot, first we were more like a metal band, than we changed the style, we use more percussions and now we start by using keyboard and it brings a new sound of the band!

Victoria VAYA: OH VAYA has an interesting evolution and it’s probably why I’m stoked with it. 😀 The first step of the album was done with a French composer, then he has to quit and I have to continue. So arrived a Hungarian composer with a real good classical background and a good rocky spirit and he gave a lot of keys for the arrangements of VAYA tracks album. Then for the next step VAYA needed to find a powerful evolution to go on stage and it’s when VAYA met the volcanic Chilean blood of Sebastian, also with a real good academic background. So I mean VAYA is rich of differences and musicians souls

Philippe: When I was young, I was more inspired by hard-rock, heavy-metal, then I changed, I started listening, studying and playing jazz, after played more blues and now, I play so many kinds of music and I’m back to rock.

RAPHAEL: My drums are now stronger into the groove. I am happy about this, it is really for VAYA!

I have a nice memory of the recording of the first studio album. There was someone who directed the arrangements and told what I had to play. Sometimes, I had no idea what would be the final results! When I listened to this album, I was well surprised!

The live album is more representative of my own sound.

And that movement in sound and anything else has been more organic or deliberate?

Victoria VAYA: We still experienced things. No limits for music, it’s a big playground!

Philippe: Yeah, we always try to experiment new things, new sounds, new songs, new ideas, it depends in what mood we are!

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

Victoria VAYA: Poetry of Jim Morrison, visionary as David Bowie, psyche as Jimmy Hendrix, sensitive as Bjork.

Philippe: I always try to adapt myself, to play and compose songs depending of the different styles I play in every band.

Is there a process which generally guides the writing of songs?

Victoria VAYA: So I am actually on the composing roots. Could be change never know, I always send ideas and people catch it for developing it, that’s the sharing part. No process. Sometimes it’s a drum that will be the first step, sometimes lyrics or a guitar riff or a keyboard song. I am receiving it and managing it to put all together.

Philippe: I think when someone has an idea for a new song, he or she brings it to the band, then we listen to it, we talk about it and then we try to play it together the best we can and everybody’s free to give his own opinion to change something, or to improve it.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

Victoria VAYA: Everywhere.

Philippe: Sometimes when I’m home and I try to find something good, or when I’m outside, in the street, in the train or wherever, it can happen anytime in any places

Give us some background to your latest release.

Victoria VAYA: WOW, it will take too much time, just listen and discover our double album it will connect you to your deepest part.

How about some insight to the themes and premise behind it and its songs.

Victoria VAYA: Oh my Dear. So the biggest thing who’s giving to you power what is it? The law of Nature :)))))) Then second is: Human experiences/observations. And you do a bridge between them.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

Victoria VAYA: Both of it. For sample Biscuit and Friends are born on studio record. The arrangement of My little curl too…So a mix of it.

Philippe: Actually, we went once to a studio to record altogether and now, we’re working on new songs for the next album, so right now if we have ideas for new songs, we record it on our own on the computer.

RAPHAEL: I’d rather prefer to go into the studio prepared to win some time (and some money). Sometimes it could be interesting to develop a song in the studio. The song BLOW is a nice example.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably a favourite aspect of the band?

Victoria VAYA: Absolutely: it’s being true and powerful for giving a real good travel to you guys! 😉

Philippe: The favourite aspect is when we’re on stage, with a good sound and with an enthusiastic audience, when we all have so much fun!

RAPHAEL: a live show that you will remember. The voice is so powerful, and without any light shows. I am always surprised that the audience is thankful and go back home with a smile.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found?

Victoria VAYA: I am always surprised people liked our live show. First in Switzerland where we met each other; the public there is really difficult to “ seduce” with a new way of expressing music; but they liked the spirit of the sacred fire. And such a lovely warm welcome into our last East of Europe tour. It’s growing step by step but because public is really welcome and is clearly a part of our music, VAYA is continuing with them. I would like to take that opportunity to say again thank you for all your encouragements everywhere we have played.

Philippe: It’s really hard for every new band to get known! You have to keep playing as often as possible in many different places. And Yes everything can happen, if you work very hard, if you focus and believe in yourself and the band, great things can happen!

RAPHAEL: I have worked for years in order to meet the good people in the music business to get the trust in my projects. This is paying now.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it ultimately as a negative or positive?

Victoria VAYA: So Raphael is probably the right person to answer to that question

Philippe: Sometimes things go right and sometimes wrong, it’s not easy!

RAPHAEL: One day, I put the band on Instagram and someone discovered us from Canada. Zolla Productions is now in charge of our booking in Canada. It takes a lot of time to manage the social media, but I think this is essential nowadays to show people the development of VAYA.

Once again our big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Victoria VAYA: Come and share the sacred fire with us. VAYA VAYA.

Thank you Ringmaster!

Vaya are:

Victoria VAYA: songs writer, singer, drums and keyboard

Philippe: guitar and bass

Raphaël: Drums &Percussions

https://www.facebook.com/VAYA.Official/   https://www.vaya-official.com https://twitter.com/VAYA_official

Pete RingMaster 07/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Great Sabatini – Goodbye Audio

Pic by DAVE LEVITT

Four years on from their psyche ravaging third album, Dog Years, Canadian noise sludgers The Great Sabatini return with another maelstrom of noise bred dissonance which, to continue a trend set from their first releases, is their most irresistible trespass to date. Goodbye Audio is around thirty five minutes of sonic abrasion as unpredictable creatively as it is expectantly striking; an invasion of raw and toxic noise intent on caustic seduction.

The Montreal quartet of Steve, Sean , Rob, and Joey Sabatini have in many ways continued exploring the less destructive but deviously manipulative essences of its predecessor with Goodbye Audio but equally the new encounter again openly embraces the ravenously raw ferocity and bedlamic seeds of their sound exposed from day one. It makes for a release which tempts, seduces, and flirts with the senses and imagination as at the same time it marauds, pillages, and corrodes them.

The album opens up with recent single Still Life With Maggots, instantly descending on ears with a sonic and rhythmic harassment before taking a momentary breath and repeating the assault with the causticity of raw throated vocals enrolled. Melodic taunts and imposing tenacity also add to the short but evolving landscape of the song, that unpredictability swiftly fingering the imagination and igniting an admittedly already in place appetite for The Great Sabatini adventure set through previous escapades.

As next track, Dog Years quickly confirms this is a new psyche twisting caper with the band though but an exploration unafraid to hint at possible inspirations as the likes of Melvins, Unsane, and Sofy Major come to mind at certain moments across the whole of Goodbye Audio. The second song is an immediate bestial infringement, its carnal instincts fuelling sound and voice alongside intent as it crawls over the senses. Sludge metal and noise punk provide smog of irritability and raw tension but again if with less openness there is an underlying incalculable adventure which teases before exposing its majesty in the outstanding Strip Mall or, The Pursuit Of Crappiness Parts 1-4. The track is superb, from its initial hip manipulating flirtation breaking open a fissure of thick prowling malevolence veined with toxic grooving, that in turn twisting into corruptive punk ‘n’ roll rebellion before finding a quickly corrupted paradise.

You’re Gonna Die (Unsatisfied) stalks years and thoughts next, the guitar again inviting and taunting with its riffs as rhythms stroll and fly through the skulking throaty bass and swinging sticks. It is a maelstrom of threat and ferocity with the most frenetic prowl while Tax Season In Dreamland provides a feral punk tango exposing scars and lust with equal creative savagery. Its moments of emotionally hazed tranquillity are just as imposing stirring up emotive reflections as potent as the physical reactions its uproar provokes.

Through the shadow draped increasingly contaminated celestial breath of Brute Cortege and the intimidatingly mercurial fourteen minute emotional wilderness of Hand Of Unmaking, the album is brought to a mighty close; both tracks a provocation of body, spirit and thought with the latter a complete trial and adventure of its very own to hungrily immerse in.

We are not afraid to say that The Great Sabatini has been one of our favourite bands for a long time but even that usual readymade submission to their adventures was taken aback by the thrills and spills of Goodbye Audio. If noise annoys run for cover as the Canadians have it down to a fine raw art.

Goodbye Audio is out now on vinyl from No List Records, Ancient Temple Records and No Why Records with a cassette version featuring exclusive bonus track Drain The Swamp available from Pink Lemonade. Head over to https://thegreatsabatini.bandcamp.com/album/goodbye-audio for digital release and more…

 http://thegreatsabatini.com   https://facebook.com/thegreatsabatini   https://twitter.com/greatsabatini

Pete RingMaster 01/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Martyr Art – FearFaith Machines

Self-Dubbed as digital metal, the Martyr Art sound is a voracious mix of varied metal and industrial/electronic textures with more besides from an artist which embraces technology as eagerly as the cauldron of flavours woven into his bold recipe of enterprise. FearFaith Machines is the new and fifth album from the band, a release which for fans and newcomers can only make for one compelling adventure.

Martyr Art is the one man project of Joe Gagliardi III, an Orange County musician whose skills on the guitar are as captivating as the songwriting, vocal prowess, and imagination which equally escape his invention. The band is truly a solo project with Gagliardi playing every instrument before recording, mixing and mastering every second of adventure making up FearFaith Machines. Since emerging in 2004, Martyr Art has shared stages with the likes of Corey Glover, Doyle, KMFDM, Drowning Pool, Saul Williams, Full Devil Jacket, Brick By Brick, Dead Empires, and Moon Tooth whilst releasing a host of well-received singles and EPs as well as those previous four full-lengths. Up to this point Martyr Art had evaded our radar but FearFaith Machines has corrected that and will for a whole new tide of fans such its striking offerings.

The album starts with Motion, metallic electronic pulses and temptations luring ears before raw steely smog brings a rousing scourge of groove and alternative metal awash with industrial espionage. Quickly Gagliardi shows his vocal diversity as throat scarred and clean tones intermingle with the former heading the virulent contagion. Equally his craft on the guitar further ignites the tempest, shredding and picking multi-cultural sonic temptations.

The following cyclone of The Pleasure of Pain is just as invasively magnetic, its industrial inclinations steering the listener towards the waiting metal bred uproar. The cycle repeats with even greater heat and intensity, vocals again a great blend of attack and enterprise matching the adventurous emprise of sound. Like a maelstrom of Rabbit Junk, Squidhead, and Cynical Existence, the track is a captivating fury more than matched by next up Who Are You. The third song scowls as it plunders the senses, raging with punk dissonance as again a web of styles and flavours unite with voracity and imagination on the way to forging another major highlight within the release.

Across the sinister almost psychotic Just and the superb Constrict, the album simply expands its landscape of sound and captivation, the second of the two almost primal in its breath yet precise in its layers of boldly varied texture and spicing while their successor, Thundering, is a dark seduction with hues of bands like Type O Negative and Sisters Of Mercy to its irresistible gothic rock/post punk serenade.

Final track is Binary Slavery, a carnivorous slice of industrial metal gnawing at the senses yet soothing the wounds with melodic caresses though they too come with an edge of trespass to their infectious exploits. It is a rousing end to the album highlighting the craft, imagination, and bold fusions making up the heart of FearFaith Machines.

Gagliardi creates something that is nothing less than unique from the familiar styles and sounds he weaves with, indisputable evidence coming with one of the most fascinatingly individual and simply enjoyable encounters this year.

FearFaith Machines is out now; available @ https://martyrart.bandcamp.com/album/fearfaith-machines

http://martyrart.com/   https://www.facebook.com/martyrartofficial

Pete RingMaster 01/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Parasitic Twins Interview

Having been more than taken with their the debut EP, ‘All That’s Left To Do Now Is Sleep With Each Other’, it is with pleasure we bring you a recent interview between its creators, British hardcore duo Parasitic Twins, and our guest and friend Elliot Leaver.

For those who may not know who you are, introduce yourselves quickly.

Dom Smith (drums): I’m Dom. Max (guitars, vocals) is the other one. He’s the talented. He’s too busy, and important. You can’t sit with him.

Describe your sound in as few words as possible.

DOOM.

Who are your three biggest influences as a band?

Bongripper. Death. Generic Questions

What’s the meaning behind your band name?

It’s a Dillinger Escape Plan song, and an accurate reflection on our relationship.

How did you approach this release (All That’s Left To Do Now, Is Sleep With Each Other EP) in terms of writing and recording?

We went in to Melrose Yard Studios in York, worked with another dude with exactly the same name as me. He’s way more talented than me also. It was a pleasure. We wanted a live feel, and that’s what we got. We put ourselves under pressure to come up with three songs, it was tough but if you like it, then we’re happy. Do you like it? If you want to know what the songs are about, do check out the lyrics on Bandcamp: https://theparasitictwins.bandcamp.com/

Max is influenced by people he meets, sees and despises, mostly.

Did you try anything differently this time around than with previous efforts?

We both loved being in Seep Away, but we realised that we have to much respect for each other’s completely pointless misery to separate when that band died a tragic, horrible, fiery death. We’re stuck together now, and there’s nothing we can do about it. So, the only thing we did differently this time was work with each other instead of two or three other musicians. It’s been DELIGHTFUL.

What was it like to record the EP?

We recorded it live, and that’s the way (uh-huh, uh-huh) we like it, for now.

Do you have any personal favourite songs on the release?

I like them all. I hope you do too! Wouldn’t it be weird if you published an interview with me saying I hated everything I’ve ever put drums on?

Explain the meaning behind the album title.

Those that know, know. But basically, me and Max have done everything else but sleep with each other, so that’s that. I mean, we’ve never done anything sexual, just to clarify. But, there’s still time, I suppose. He’s so miserable, but I do love him. He has nice pectoral muscles, FYI.

Do you have any dates lined up at present?

Not right now, I’m in a new relationship, not with Max though. Other than that, we play Oldham, Ashton-Under-Lyne, York, Hull and Stockport with our mates in The Carnival Rejects – it’s our first “tour”, and I say it like that, because it isn’t really a tour, but it’s a series of dates, and that’ll be lovely.

What are your favourite songs to perform live?

Massive’ and a bunch of new ones that we’ve not released yet. I’m excited to do those. There’s one called ‘Autopsy’, and it’s very cheery, as you might imagine.

What are the best and worst shows you’ve played to date?

Seep Away played a couple of shows with Hands Off Gretel, they were great. BUT, with this band, we’re looking forward to shows with Pat Butcher, and Carnival Rejects.

Worst shows? Our first band, not (Seep Away), played with a terrible goth band beginning with R and ending in hombus. One of that band’s members was a dick to my friend, and that’s not okay. Aside from that, it wasn’t our most triumphant show. Maybe because there was too much smoke. Goths love smoke.

If you could open for anyone, who would it be?

Code Orange, or Turnstile.

What’s the plan for the rest of 2018?

Celebrating the fact that this interview happened. Thank you for your attention.

https://www.facebook.com/ParasiticTwinsBand

Check out our review of ‘All That’s Left To Do Now Is Sleep With Each Other’ @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2018/10/17/parasitic-twins-all-thats-left-to-do-now-is-sleep-with-each-other/

Questions by Elliot Leaver

RingMaster Review 07/12/2018

The Eastern Swell – Hand Rolled Halo

Having been spellbound by their debut album, there was a definite intrigue as to how its successor would rise to sit alongside if not above its captivating predecessor. Fair to say that Hand Rolled Halo took little time to unveil its own compelling beauty and mesmeric dexterity to answer the question; the album with its matching craft and imagination sitting firmly alongside the first as one essential electric folk/melodic rock adventure.

The Eastern Swell is an electric folk outfit from Edinburgh which emerged in 2014 and inspired a flood of acclaim loaded attention with their debut album, One Day, A Flood two years later. Released as now its successor, through their home city’s great independent label Stereogram Recordings, the album was a tapestry of poetic storytelling and melodic suggestiveness. Hand Rolled Halo offers more of the same yet is as unique in character and enterprise as you could wish for. Recorded and mixed by Pete Harvey at Pumpkinfield Studios and mastered by Reuben Taylor, the album just smokes and simmers on the senses as it seduces ears and imagination from start to finish, Hand Rolled Halo sharing a tempering but welcoming intimacy to any hot lascivious celebration and comforting warmth to every thought haunted, loneliness accompanying cold stark night.

Featuring guest craft from previously mentioned cellist/keyboardist Harvey and trumpeter Al Hamilton alongside the quartet of vocalist Lainie Urquhart, guitarist Chris Reeve, bassist Neil Collman, and drummer Andy Glover, Hand Rolled Halo instantly caresses ears with the melodic touch and intimation of Miles From Home. Intrigue wraps every note, the emerging melody almost sinister in its lure and so enthralling especially as the song slowly but assuredly adds new teases to its invitation. Eventually the smouldering flame of trumpet lights the new warmth coating song and the senses, Urquhart’s siren tones swift seduction as too the darker attitude and tone of Collman’s bass. Still drama soaks every note and movement within the excellent track, even in its livelier swing and twists, allowing the imagination to conjure alone as well as with the personal reflection of a track where the word captivation does no justice to its enthralling hold.

The band’s version of traditional folk song Blackwaterside follows, The Eastern Swell giving it their own gentle but openly imaginative and again beguiling interpretation as heated rock hues merge with the song’s classical heart before The Game brings its adventurous exploits to ears. As with all tracks, the web of individual strands transcends beyond that electric folk tagging they come under; this outstanding instrumental embracing slight but certain dark wave and post punk essences to its suggestion heavy canter to provide a feast for the imagination and senses.

Next up Down Again By Blackwaterside echoes the concept of the dark sad tale shared by the second track, this time though re-imagining the romantic outcome the protagonist in Blackwaterside was expecting rather than the deceit. Again the band treats us to a melodic temptation in voice and sound which chases away the dark a feat its successor, Spindrift, matches but with a shadow draped passage into almost gothic lit introspection. The track is pure charm and again dark intrigue, the band’s music alone as manipulative as it is a platform for the listener to create their own theatre; a richness every song offers up.

From one favourite moment to another as Zeitgeist bounds in with its boisterous waltz. For the main, Hand Rolled Halo has the body gently swaying but here it is urged into full animation as gypsy/jazz and swing irreverence infest the instinctively lively folk heart of the song. Throughout the album the dark strings of the cello transfix and the hot flumes of trumpet incite and here simply throw off any restraints to romp with the feverish appetites escaping the rest of the band.

Through firstly the increasingly infectious and flirtatious serenade of The Scene and lastly the instrumental hinting and pastoral refinement of Dreaming Of St. Jude, the quite magnificent Hand Rolled Halo concludes its temptation and seduction. We called its predecessor spellbinding and no other word truly fits The Eastern Swell’s new adventure either though instantly persuasive and only blossoming in every aspect with every listen, new layers of imagination perpetually unveiled, Hand Rolled Halo borders on alchemy.

Hand Rolled Halo is available now via Stereogram Recordings @ https://stereogramrecordings.bandcamp.com/album/hand-rolled-halo

http://www.theeasternswell.com/   https://www.facebook.com/theeasternswell   https://twitter.com/TheEasternSwell

Pete RingMaster 07/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Ringing the changes: 21 Taras Interview

21 Taras is a rock band from Littleton, Colorado which having sparked keen attention through previous releases has ventured into new directions in sound and adventure. This evolution is at the heart of their new album, Change. Wanting to now more we recently chatted with the band learning…

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started?

4 out of the 5 of us went to school together. James and Alec shared some classes and started the band, then shortly after recruited Jimmy. James went up to the first person he saw; who just so happened to be Jimmy; and asked if he played bass. Austin was later introduced to the band in a similar fashion. I (Julian) moved to Colorado in 2014 and met James online on some band finder website. They sent me some songs to throw some vocals on and we played our first show just a couple weeks later.

Have you been or are involved in other bands? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

We all have been playing music for a while now in one way or another, but this is pretty much our first real band. I had a project back when I lived in Alaska with one of my good friends Rio, but it was just the two of us. James and Alec had gone through a few other line-ups under a different band name, but as of late 2014 the line-up has been set and that is when the final name change to 21 Taras ensued.

What inspired the band name?

It comes from Buddhism. They have 21 different forms of Tara, all based around self-empowerment and self-enlightenment. The name stands for how we try to continually grow as not only musicians, but also as people through our music and songwriting.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

We just want to continue evolving. Just about four years in, and we have changed so much already. I don’t think we ever try to plan for where things go; it just sort of happens. We’ve tried to dictate things before but that is a good way for things to end up forced.

Do the same things still drive the band from its first steps or have they evolved over time?

I think now having a full music studio at our disposal has greatly changed everything. It allows us to be more creative as we are working on our time. Our mentor/producer Jim Boyd deserves a lot of credit for our last record. With him opening up his studio to us, it really led to the growth of the songs and the overall freedom the album possesses.

Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved?

We started out with more of a hard rock and grunge presence, and it has evolved rather quickly to more of a 60s and 70s influenced sound. Things are getting more and more psychedelic influenced as we speak.

Has it been more of an organic movement of sound or more deliberately wanting to try new things?

A bit of both, I think everyone was starting to get a little burnt out and I think we just had a lack of direction. We were kind of floating in one area with no real progression occurring. We all had a big free flowing discussion back in February with the main message being about trying new things. Just taking more outside influences and putting them to use. It really has led to some very diverse songs for us.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

A big one for us is the Beatles. Right around Rubber Soul is when they really started to branch out and grow their sound. I just love how one band can have so many songs from different ends of the spectrum, from Honey Pie to Helter Skelter, they really changed the confines of a particular album mould. Other bands that do this are Queen and the Beach Boys. As a band we all share so many influences with each other. For James he brings a lot of the heavier side such as bands like Earthless and Red Fang, while Alec is more of a classic aficionado with bands like Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin. Austin and Jimmy probably have the most eclectic tastes, although we all tend to enjoy a bit of everything. It is a good problem to have as it leads to a diverse palette.

Is there a particular process to the songwriting?

Every song is different really, some songs are written by one or two guys while others we all sit and write together. Sometimes one guy will write a section and bring it to the group, while other songs may be more fleshed out by the time it reaches the rehearsal room.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

I write the lyrics and more often than not it is usually dictated by the music itself. There have been times however where I will write the lyrics first and the music will follow.

Give us some background to your latest release.

Our latest release is called Change and the name is to be taken quite literal. It marks several big changes for us as a band, such as our sound but also our songwriting processes and just our overall growth as a group.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind it and its songs.

The album starts off rather straight forward musically, and by song two we go to a very new place, for both the listener and the band itself. Gettin’ Hungry (track two) is very jazz influenced number featuring a good friend Mia Klosterman on backing vocals. The song and much of the album takes you through some of the mental hardships I was going through at the time. I tried to have the bridge of the song represent what I was going through internally during a very distressed time in my life being away from a loved one.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

With a studio at our disposal, it allows us to do both simultaneously. The songs are constantly being devolved and modified.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the favourite aspect of the band?

Performing has changed so much for us with the growth of our songs. With the new album containing so much depth and there being just five of us in the band, it creates a fun challenge to reproduce the music. We are always looking at new ways to reinvent the songs and create more of a cohesive show that really tells a story. It really is theatrical in a way.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it?

If the drive is there, it is always possible. We are very driven and determined, but we also genuinely love doing it. So even the smallest of impacts are very satisfying for us. We just have to keep going.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive?

Times and technology change and the only option is to adapt to your surroundings whether you like it or not. Social media is part of our generation and there isn’t really a way around that. There are both negative and positive aspects to that but one really big positive is that it allows for bands to connect directly with their fans and have a whole new reach that would have never been possible before. Of course this leads to over saturation, which is a whole other discussion, but you have to always find the good in a bad situation no matter the circumstances. Speaking of, here’s a shameless plug of our website! https://www.21tarasband.com/

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

We put a lot of time into our new album Change and our goal is to take you on a journey through some of our favorite periods in music. The album focuses heavily on the mid to late 60s, as well as 70s with a bit of early jazz influence as well. You can listen to the band’s new album Change here: https://21tarasband.bandcamp.com/album/change

https://www.facebook.com/21tarasband   https://twitter.com/21TarasBand

Pete RingMaster 07/12/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright