The romance of light and shadows: a singles round-up

With the ever welcome keen insight of Shauna McLarnon of Shameless PR and the outstanding band Ummagma, we offer up another quartet of singles deserving of your explorations.

First up is the new solo track from Harry Stafford of post-punk gothic rockers Inca Babies and a rather potent taste of the Manchester hailing musician’s forthcoming album, Gothic Urban Blues.

Painted Ocean is a song which casts a web of intrigue and intimation within a jazz and blues wired dark rock landscape. It is a dark echo of the world we live in yet equally intimates on a personal level as its morose yet spirit rousing stroll works away on body and rock ‘n’ roll instincts.

Within its drama bold body, Stafford’s narrative is just as magnetic and enticing; word and sound entangling in a shadow nurtured sea of dark imagination and devilish enterprise further lit by jazz flamed brass across soulful blues enterprise.

Something akin to a blend of The Filthy Tongues and Tom waits, Painted Ocean proved quickly and thickly irresistible and an invitation to Gothic Urban Blues impossible to turn down.

In contrast to the darken skies cast by Mr Stafford, Ukraine’s 6th Crowd weaves an electronic enticement in new single, The Day is Over, which boldly almost viscerally shimmers with electronic luminescence though this is underlined by its own suggestive shadows.

6th Crowd is the solo project of Kyiv based Dari Maksymova who is better known as the front-woman, synth and bass player of post-punk band On The Wane. Her own musical exploration is bred in the heart of synth pop and rave dance floored electro rock adventure and has already offered up a debut single in Самозванцы which was keenly received, together both tracks a taster of her debut EP, Avoid The Void, expected in late spring.

A purposeful rhythmic lure aligns to a similarly dark and immediately firm electronic murmur as The Day is Over stirs, crystalline sparks lighting its temptation. As Maksymova’s radiant tones join the emerging proposal, further light and enterprise is cast by synths yet still that balance of dark and light offers an intimation and tempestuousness which firmly enthrals attention. With Maksymova sharing the song’s heart in her own national tongue it is left to the music to inform the imagination and that it does with almost teasing effortlessness, The Day is Over a source of infection and enterprise sure to lure a greater wealth of ears to its creator and her forthcoming EP.

With a double EP in Fishbowl/ Terrestrial due March 20th, Alienbaby Collective is another fine proposition offering up some potent teasers in the shape of singles of which Degenerate Moon is an infestation of sound, a noise rock bred trespass of ears and imagination as captivating in its melodic craft as it is in fuzz induced irreverence.

Almost menacingly infectious and with a melodic enterprise verging on the toxic, the track is a moment of raw beauty further escalated by the entrancing tones of Liú Mottes, the former guitarist in Blue Crime and New YX and currently part of SOON, Slow Worries, and OBOL LE. Her solo project, Alienbaby Collective creates a sound which holds no fear in going where the listener may fear yet as proven by the bewitching Degenerate Moon it is the source of haunting pleasure, something also epitomised within double A-sided single Fruit/I Don’t Recall Waking Up released even more recently, an incitement which fascinates as it courts emotive responses to its post punk endowed noise rock nurtured predominantly instrumental haunting.

Together both singles suggest, no insist, that Fishbowl/ Terrestrial is a challenge ears and imaginations should take on.

Lastly we have for your intrigue, the new single from The Mystery Plan. With their fifth album, Zsa Zsa, scheduled for an April release through Ten Millimeter Omega Recordings, the US outfit drop the enticing offering of Ballad of JC Quinn as a lead and warm up for intrigue and attention on March 6th.

The song is a vibrant and infectious slice of the band’s dream pop meets melodic alternative rock adventure. With lively “folk nova” rhythms adding to the swinging instinctive funk stroll of the song, it needed little time to reveal a richness of ingredients and flavours as equally swift captivation.

Having already ignited the senses and appetite with previous uniquely sounding and equally contagious single, the Massive Attack-esque Al Gore Rhythms, the North Carolina hailing quintet repeat the captivating deed again with Ballad of JC Quinn; The Mystery Plan laying down grounds for a definite exploration of the sure to be unique charms of Zsa Zsa.

Painted Ocean from Harry Stafford is digitally available now with Gothic Urban Blues released March 27th, both via Black Lagoon Records with album pre-ordering available now @ https://harrystafford.bandcamp.com/album/gothic-urban-blues

https://www.facebook.com/harrystaffordUK/    https://twitter.com/harrystaf62

The Day is Over from 6th Crowd is available now @ https://6thcrowd.bandcamp.com/track/the-day-is-over

https://www.facebook.com/6thcrowd

Alienbaby Collective’s Degenerate Moon and Fruit/I Don’t Recall Waking Up are out now through Humm Recordings with pre-ordering for Fishbowl/ Terrestrial available @ https://hummrecordings.bandcamp.com/album/alienbaby-collective-fishbowl-terrestrial-lp-humm10

https://www.facebook.com/alienbabycollective/

The Mystery Plan drop Ballad of JC Quinn on March 6th via Ten Millimeter Omega Recordings with Zsa Zsa due for release April 3rd.

https://www.facebook.com/themysteryplannc/   https://twitter.com/mystery_plan,

Pete RingMaster 05/03/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Pictures in the mind, a singles round-up

With our feet now firmly into 2020 we welcome another collection of new singles via Shauna at Shameless PR and a truly eclectic mix of sounds and flavours they offered our imaginations to play with.

The first sees British electronic duo Broads come together with fellow Norfolk based artist and songstress Milly Hirst. Theirs has been an on-going collaboration over the years and sees a new album, Ollust, unveiled in March. Ahead of its release they have just revealed Happisburgh (Single Edit), an atmospheric and provocative ambient crafted instrumental which as it hugged ears swiftly had the imagination composing its own interpretations.

Pronounced ‘haze-bruh’, Happisburghis built around ideas of a town disappearing into the sea – history being rendered in front of us, and future folk tales falling into place.”  It is a piece of music which even in its relatively minimalistic shape is rich in intimation and emotion with field recordings aligning with suggestive melodies and at times the almost drone like touch of pianos.

The tale it suggests is open for the listener to further weave with, every listen opening new avenues and vistas to imagine and explore much as the accompanying B-side Red Pits incites with its own individual sonic theatre. It is a darker and tenser piece but it too has a light within its shadows which inspires thoughts as they paint their exposition.

Happisburgh is a beguiling and haunting departure from the incessant trespass of the day and with eyes closed a moment in time which involves much more than just ears.

In rich contrast Vultures is a track which has all its creative statement in its rich web of sound but equally provided an experience which haunted the senses and imagination. The single is the new offering from Norwegian psych post-punk outfit Mayflower Madame and it too comes from a larger proposition due for release in March, the band’s new album titled Prepared For A Nightmare.

The Oslo band was formed in 2011 and soon established themselves on the national underground scene though it was through debut album, Observed in a Dream in 2016, and more so the Premonition EP two years later that they really stirred attention and acclaim much further afield. The sound of Trond Fagernes (vocals, guitars, bass), Håvard Haga (guitars), and Ola J. Kyrkjeeide (drums) has proved a captivation of psychedelic rock, shoegaze and post punk and it has to be said has been no more potent than within the delicious dark haunt of Vultures.

A track centred around “feelings of excess, lust and greed, always wanting and needing more,” Vultures is almost ravenous in its contagious breath and insistence. Nagging post punk rhythms and steely grooves provide the riveting  core to which spiralling psych guitars and harmonic vocals cast their spellbinding enterprise yet there is much more to its atmospherically evocative character which brings the single further alive.

It is a stunning track and quickly inflamed an impatient anticipation in us for that impending album.

This March also sees the release of Kingdom of Sleep, the new album from American singer-songwriter, guitarist, multi-instrumentalist and producer Jonny Polonsky. New single The Weeping Souls is the first teaser for the release, a song which it has to be said swept us up in its infectious embrace and proceeded to share a certain light on the day.

A solo artist for over 23 years, Polonsky has worked with the likes of Johnny Cash, Neil Diamond, Tom Morello, Pete Yorn, Dixie Chicks, Maynard James Keenan, Minnie Driver, and Donovan along the way as well as collaborated and played with a host of artists. Kingdom of Sleep is his sixth album and if The Weeping Souls is a clue to what it holds, the full-length is going to have ears eagerly waiting.

Guitar and voice immediately hug ears, rhythms holding back but still a pungent texture before steering the contagious stroll the song breaks into. It is a gait which twists from swing to canter and back across the track but as the music, one which is as unpredictable as it is mesmeric. Listening to the song thoughts of XTC and Love and Rockets came to mind, a delicious spicing which only elevated the temptation of the encounter even further again resulting in a certain intrigue for the bigger proposal it comes from.

Lastly we hope to spark your curiosity the way of Strangest Thing from Swedish-Australian indie pop outfit Tiny Fighter and no surprise it too is a taster for something larger to come, and a rather flavoursome appetiser it is too.

Based in Stockholm, apparently Tiny Fighter came about from a chance meeting between Therese Karlsson (a truck driver from Kalmar, Sweden) and Tim Spelman (a doctor from Melbourne, Australia) in 2017 in that great Swedish city. Since then the band has released a host of successful praise gathering singles alongside an EP and live album. Strangest Thing is our introduction to the band and we eagerly wait to hear much more starting with their forthcoming debut studio album, Going Home.

Strangest Thing is an eagerly infectious affair, its gentle but eager start soon breeding a strong catchiness, one definitely encouraged by the rousing character of the bass and Karlsson’s magnetic vocals. Keys and guitar weave further melodic enticement across this already captivating stroll, everything carrying a virulent breath which only escalates once aligning together.

With a touch of The Primitives and The Cranberries to the song, Strangest Thing lured keen attention with greater lust by the listen, so again roll on the album.

Happisburgh and the album Ollust from Broads and Milly Hirst are out now via Humm Recordings; available @ https://broadsofnorfolk.bandcamp.com/album/happisburgh-1

Upcoming Broads and Milly Hirst Shows

02 April 2020 – Octagon Chapel, Norwich

03 April 2020 – Thetford Guildhall

04 April 2020 – Oulton Chapel

05 April 2020 – Strangers’ Hall, Norwich

10 April 2020 – Happisburgh St. Mary’s Church Rooms

11 April 2020 – Dereham Memorial Hall

https://www.facebook.com/Broadsofnorfolk   https://www.facebook.com/millyhirstmusic

Mayflower Madame’s Vultures is out now with Prepared For A Nightmare released March 27, both through Only Lovers Records and to be available @ https://mayflowermadame.bandcamp.com/album/prepared-for-a-nightmare.

Upcoming Tour Dates:

March 27th – Desert Stars Festival – Joshua Tree

March 28th – Bar Sinister – Los Angeles

March 29th – Whistle Stop – San Diego

March 30th – Lunchbox – Phoenix

April 2nd – Lo-Fi – Seattle

April 3rd – Out From The Shadows Festival – Portland

April 4th – Elbo Room – Oakland

https://www.facebook.com/mayflowermadame

The Jonny Polonsky single, The Weeping Souls, is out now with the album, Kingdom of Sleep due for release digitally, on CD and clear vinyl with gatefold sleeve on March 6th, both via Ghostworks Recordings with pre-ordering of the latter available now @ https://www.jonnypolonsky.com/music and https://jonnypolonsky.bandcamp.com/

February Europe Tour Dates:

2/14 BRUGGE-De Kelk

2/15 MAASEIK-Jazzclub Sjuur

2/16 ANTWERPEN-Tram 3

2/19 GENT-Kinky Star

2/20 SINT NIKLAAS-Casino

2/21 BRUSSEL-to be determined

2/22 LEUVEN-Depot

https://www.jonnypolonsky.com/   https://www.facebook.com/JonnyPolonskyMusicPage   https://twitter.com/jonnypolonsky

Strangest Thing is available from Tiny Fighter via Bay Terrace Records February 7th with Going Home released March 27th @ https://tinyfighterz.bandcamp.com

https://www.tinyfighter.org   https://www.facebook.com/tinyfighterz   https://twitter.com/TinyFighterz

Pete RingMaster 07/02/2020

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Roars within shadows

Courtesy of the similarly talented Shauna McLarnon (Ummagma/Shameless PR), we have a collection of tracks which not only deserve attention, they simply demand it.

NYC-based, The 1865 has already left an ear gripping mark on 2019 with the release of their debut album, Don’t Tread On We!, and are ensuring it is leaving with a just as potent  slice of their inimitable sound through new single, John Brown’s Gat.

Formed in 2017, The 1865 embrace influences from the likes of Bad Brains, Jimi Hendrix, Muddy Waters, and Minor Threat to their sound and listening to the new single it is easy to imagine that X-Ray Spex are another to inspire their creative instincts. Taken from their first full-length, the track was written in honour of John Brown, “a white man who believed that African Americans should not be enslaved and eventually he lost his life on behalf of his Nubian brothers and sisters.”

Instantly the guitar of band founder Sacha Jenkins (The White Mandingos, The Wilding Incident) teases ears, its sonic nagging swiftly joined by the bold rhythms of drummer Chuck Treece. It is a compelling start only more irresistible once the tones of vocalist Carolyn “Honeychild” Coleman (Apollo Heights / The Veldt, Badawi) stirs up even greater enterprise and animation in the song. Constantly twisting and turning in unpredictability and contagious imagination, the song swept us up in its creative theatre and punk rock rapacity; emerging  as one of the best singles to pleasure our ears this year.

Just as captivating in its own unique way is the debut single from dark electronic collective Dispel. Rising in a senses embracing fusion of darkwave, synthpop, and gothic rock, Modal Consequence is an atmospherically caliginous hug of sound and intimation providing an enthralling teaser to the band’s first album due early next year.

Dispel is the creation of Scott Dispel, a founding member of hardcore band Face Value and also currently the drummer for TEXTBEAK. Within the band, he is joined by vocalist Ravensea and Sean Gallows, the trio reaping inspirations from artists such as Sisters of Mercy, Bauhaus, Clan of Xymox, Depeche Mode, VNV Nation, Delerium, The Misfits and The Cramps for a sound within the single which openly aligns familiar hues to bold new imagination.

Taken from their debut full-length, Lore, and “the moment where the Hero/Heroin takes that first step into that dangerous realm of the unknown” in their journey, Modal Consequence quickly envelops the listener in its dark hues, suggestive textures which prove as instinctively catchy as they are hauntingly sunless. Within that rich allure, the siren-esque tones of Ravensea captivate as she shares the drama and unknown horizons of the song’s protagonist.

With an Evanescence meets Nightwish breath to its electronic adventure, Modal Consequence quickly and firmly had us absorbed and keenly anticipating the arrival of Lore.

Another artist with a new album due early 2020 is Atlanta songstress K Michelle DuBois and she presents a magnetic appetiser in the shape of new single Feast or Famine. She admits she is not sure yet if the latest track will be part of the album’s collection of offerings yet such its inescapable captivation and another example of its creator’s instinct for exploring new and eclectic adventures, the song only provides a thick lure for its larger successor.

With guitarist Dan Dixon and drummer Chandler Rentz alongside on the song, DuBois weaves a sound enfolding eighties pop and electro inspirations in indie rock and darker textured flavours. There is a Stevie Nicks hue to her presence and the seduction of the music itself and equally echoes of the Blondie and Divinyls influence she welcomes though here too something individual arises from a rich blend and, within Feast or Famine, effortlessly enthrals.

The track harmonically shimmers into view, quickly catching its infectious stride as synth and rhythms unite in a catchy stroll over which DuBois’ vocals easily captivate. The electro pop heart within the rock bred body of the song pulsates, its charm a beacon for the bolder rock ‘n’ roll traits of the track to latch on to like a moth and from start to finish, it all together provides one riveting contagion.

Whether the track makes the final line-up of that upcoming album we will find out soon but it only sparks keen anticipation of that impending release as too does its predecessor, Waves Break, it similarly a virulent like of electro pop ‘n’ roll, with both available at https://kmichelledubois.bandcamp.com/track/feast-or-famine

Finally we eagerly suggest checking out the new EP from US shoegazers, The Veldt. The arresting Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose bears another collection of tracks soaked in the band’s distinct and soulful sound and infectiously takes ears and imagination on atmospheric adventures.

Consisting of identical twins Daniel (vocals, guitar) and Danny Chavis (guitar), Hayato Nakao (bass), Marvin Levi (drums) and Alex Cox (guitar), The Veldt has consistently sparked our imaginations since their releases first emerged in the late eighties/early nineties. Some have fired us up more than others but each flight of their mood thick sound has been a source of fascination and reward with Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose one of the most potent.

The band’s sound is bred on the essences of shoegaze, dream pop, and soul and woven into soundscapes which seduce as they envelop, almost devour the senses. They are emotive affairs as proven by the new EP which come thick in intimation, rich in intimacy, and drenched in catchiness. EP opener, The Color Of Love Is Blue immediately proves the suggestion, its initial melodic invitation an echo of eighties indie pop but wrapped in the atmospheric density and emotion which marks The Veldt sound and an individuality which we can only slightly compare to the little known and now demised Japanese band, Tokyo Chaos City.

From its great start, the EP only pulled us in with richer potency, the bewitching Black and Blue and its fuzz infested climate and Fit to be Tied through its virulent romance of ears wrapping greater seduction and pleasure on the senses. From Daniel’s compelling tones to every aspect of the band’s invasively spellbinding endeavours, the tracks tantalised and ensnared; traits which persist across one of the band’s most absorbing releases yet, both Camus and Dakini smothering infatuated ears with their own imagination consuming charm and drama as emotional intensity comes in equally hypnotic waves.

Completed by the A.R.Kane Mix of I Like The Way You Talk and a Carlos Bess / Jason Furlow Mix of Dakini, the relentlessly absorbing Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose is the epitome of captivation and indeed pleasure.

And that is a roundup of some striking offerings which to ignore will only mean missing out on some real pleasure.

 

Both John Brown’s Gat and Don’t Tread On We! from The 1865 are out now, available digitally via Apple Music, Spotify and directly from the band via Bandcamp, as well as numerous other online stores.

Upcoming live dates for The 1865:

Dec. 07, 2019 New York – The Kingsland (with H.R. and Human Rights, MAAFA, The Screws, Rebelmatic, Universe Ignore Her, Foxtails) – 18+ event

Jan. 09, 2020 New York – Max Fish (with Rebelmatic)

Jan. 18, 2010 New York – Brooklyn Academy of Music BAM Cafe ||| Black Rock Coalition Celebrates MLK (with Major Taylor) – All Ages / Free and Open To The Public

https://www.facebook.com/the1865band   https://twitter.com/the1865band   https://twitter.com/the1865band

Dispel’s Modal Consequence is available now @ https://dispelmusic.bandcamp.com/releases  as a free download with Lore set for release on January 10th, available on vinyl and CD, as well as digital download with pre-orders taken now @ https://www.dispelmusic.com/Album/

https://www.facebook.com/DispelMusicdotcom/

https://www.kmichelledubois.com/   https://www.facebook.com/KMichelleDuBoisMusic   https://twitter.com/kmichelledubois

Thanks to the Moth and Areanna Rose is available now @ https://theveldtmusic.bandcamp.com/releases

http://www.theveldtmusic.com   https://www.facebook.com/VeldtThe/   https://twitter.com/veldtthe

Pete RingMaster 26/11/2019

Caresses Amidst Punches with a handful of songs

With thanks to Shauna at Shameless PR our attention was pointed to a clutch of singles which may have been of interest. What they all proved to be was the source of increasing pleasure and each a teaser to bigger and bolder things.

Firstly as their debut album looms ever near, Los Angeles hailing psych rockers Tombstones in Their Eyes have released a rich temptation for it in the shape of new two track single Open Skies.

The band’s sound is a thick blend of psychedelic and shoegaze bred textures soaked in atmospheric density but offers a further array of flavours in its creative breath. The quartet has already unveiled its attention luring potency through earlier releases and only breeds greater anticipation for that first album, Maybe Someday, with their latest proposition.

Released through Somewherecold Records, Open Skies takes shape from within dark shadows, its fuzzy breath soon enveloping ears with an inviting trespass of sound and intimation. The lead vocals of guitarist/keyboardist John Treanor swiftly bring their magnetic resonance to the melodically cacophonous encounter as the rhythmic stroll of drummer Stephen Striegel and bassist Mike Mason provide a controlled yet tenacious incitement. It is a dense cloud of captivating enterprise, crawling over the senses with sonorous dexterity within a haze flooded soundscape skilfully shaped by the craft of guitarist Josh Drew side by side with Treanor.

The song comes with an alternative version of Dreams, the closing track on that forthcoming full-length. It too embroils ears in suggestive smog, one fuelled by caliginous light and seductive radiance. A siren of temptation the song prowls as it glides across the senses, wrapping the imagination in a post rock/psych rock ambience as physical as it is somnambulistic.

Together both tracks make anticipation of Tombstones in Their Eyes new album a touch on the keen side.

Another band with an eagerly awaited release ahead is Italian rock band Elizabeth The Second and they too have provided a rather tasty appetiser for it in the shape of a new single, the reason for that keen intrigue.

No One Cares is the Padova based trio’s debut single and comes from the Two Margaritas at The Fifty Five EP released this November. Formed in 2018, the band’s sound has already drawn references to the likes of Blur, The Libertines, The Strokes, The Clash, and Franz Ferdinand but as their first release reveals there is plenty of individuality involved in its contagious character.

From the first strum of Ben Moro’s guitar No One Cares has a rousing breath to its catchiness, its swing driven by the lively beats of Luca Gallato and the great moan of Michele Venturini’s bass. Moro’s vocals are soon adding to the infectious proposal on offer, the track’s garage rock toning across a punk ‘n’ roll bounce instinctively anthemic. Every subsequent riff, hook, and roar only accentuates its contagion, the song a striking and easy to devour introduction to Elizabeth The Second and spark for an already impatient wait for their first EP.

Another artist with an album poised to be unveiled is Sebastian Straw, an Italian based musician/songwriter creating a sound with a certain nineties Brit pop edge to its alternative rock breeding. My Friend is the latest single taken from Welcome Yesterday, a track which provides an infectious lure to artist and album.

Keys and guitar caress ears from the start, rhythms soon adding their moody touch before Straw’s distinctive tones spark the heart and more volatile instincts of the track. Already the song is a manipulative incitement with something akin to Richard Ashcroft meets Gaz Coombes to its songwriting and character while strings and keys only add to its contagion and fiery drama, emotion lining every moment.

Straw has been making music since a young age and if My Friend is a potent clue to the endeavours within his first album will be finding some sure attention coming his way.

Finally we have the song Dancing With Death to recommend. It comes from British outfit Noctorum, a duo comprised of guitarist/singer-songwriter Marty Willson-Piper (The Church, All About Eve, The Saints, Anekdoten) and producer Dare Mason. The pair was one of many who severely suffered through the bankruptcy of PledgeMusic with an estimated $15,000 through pledges owed to them. They still honoured all those pledges for the album, The Afterlife released earlier this year, out of their own pocket. Now the band, in order to recoup those funds, are releasing The Afterdeath EP through a GoFundMe campaign, a four track digital encounter with two new tracks and two covers exclusive to pledgers.

Dancing With Death is the teaser for the release, a treat of rock magnetism wrapped in gothic shadows. There is something of The Mission to the song, its quick ear grabbing dexterity fuelled by melodic enterprise and rich imagination. Guitars alone offer a drama which just got under the skin, their twists and turns fluid within that shadowed melodic rock landscape.

The track is superb and reason alone to treat yourself to The Afterdeath EP but potently backed by the other new track in The Mermaid and Noctorum’s covers of The Sound’s I Can’t Escape Myself and Buffalo Springfield’s Nowadays Clancy Can’t Even Sing.

 

Open Skies from Tombstones in Their Eyes is available now @ https://tombstonesswc.bandcamp.com/album/open-skies with Maybe Someday released through Somewherecold Records on November 15.

https://www.facebook.com/TombstonesInTheirEyes   https://twitter.com/tombsinthreyes

The Elizabeth The Second single No One Cares is out 15th October with the Two Margaritas at The Fifty Five EP released November 9th; available @ https://elizabeththesecond.bandcamp.com/album/two-margaritas-at-the-fifty-five

https://www.facebook.com/elizabeth.the.second.band   https://twitter.com/Elizabethe2nd

Sebastian Straw’s My Friend is out now with Welcome Yesterday released 18th October via Seahorse Recordings.

https://www.facebook.com/sebastianstrawofficial   https://twitter.com/SebastianStraw

The Afterdeath EP from Noctorum is available until October 31st @

https://www.gofundme.com/f/noctorum

https://noctorum.band/   https://www.facebook.com/Noctorum   https://twitter.com/noctorumband

Pete RingMaster 17/10/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright