Sweet Gum Tree – The Gift

To reinforce the already successful release and temptation of latest album Sustain The Illusion, French project Sweet Gum Tree have another magnetic slice of melodic seduction poised in the shape of new single The Gift. We first became captivated by Sweet Gum Tree through debut album The Snakes You Charm & The Wolves You Tame three years ago and the latest offering and other tracks heard since then shows that the qualities and potential of that impressive introduction have grown and blossomed.

Sweet Gum Tree is the creation and solo project of songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Arno Sojo, a musician who has been part of various rock and electro bands over the past fifteen years including another of his creations in Sojo Glider. The first album saw Sojo draw on the talent of guests such as Isobel Campbell, Tindersticks drummer Earl Harvin, and Marty Willson-Piper from The Church. With Sustain The Illusion, he has recorded everything on his own with only Irish producer David Odlum who also worked on The Snakes You Charm & The Wolves You Tame helping out.

Within its melodic beauty that first album was a heart of melancholic elegance, an enticing blend which is just as ripe within The Gift. Its gentle caress of melody instantly has attention alert, guitars weaving a disarming proposal backed by the emotive tones of Sojo. A catchy air is just as swiftly invasive, luring ears within the low key but vibrant stroll of the song where every passing second seems to welcome a fresh ingredient of enterprise; strings and keys two elements rising up to add colour and depth to the heart sharing proposal.

The Gift is a serenade for the imagination, a shadowed but open kiss for the ear much as many of the tracks within that first album alone but with a new richness in enterprise and songwriting which can only see Sweet Gum Tree become the centre of bigger spotlights. It is not a lone offering within Sustain The Illusion though as songs like Guilt Trip and Twinkle show. The first of the two is a compelling mix of eighties synth pop and post punk nurtured rock playing like a fusion of The The and The Pineapple Thief while the second, again merging electronic minimalism with melodic rock tenacity, simply rouses the senses like a fusion of Slug Comparison, XTC, and Sigur Rós; both outstanding tracks though emerging unique to Sweet Gum Tree.

All songs are must check out proposals with The Gift, for ears, more than living up to its title.

The Gift is available to download from September 15th with Sustain The Illusion out now across most online stores.

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Pete RingMaster 12/09/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Waiting For Titor – Halo Pt 1

In a year of many striking, potential loaded debuts already, we suggest another especially potent and exciting introduction in the shape of the EP, Halo Pt 1. The six track offering comes from Anglo-Italian alternative rock quartet Waiting For Titor, a band founded in 2012 which has honed their sound into one fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable proposition; its imagination bred within a maturity of songwriting which just commands attention.

Waiting For Titor rose from the ashes of Italian crossover outfit Convergence, drawing their moniker from a fictional name used by a blogger claiming to be a time traveller from the year 2036. Embracing inspirations found in the specific likes of Nine Inch Nails, New Order, Depeche Mode, Foo Fighters, Sigur Ros and Massive Attack, the band has risen through the focus of the underground and having recently linked up with Belgian label Diva Records, the Manchester based foursome are poised to tempt national attention and quite possibly more such the potency of their first EP.

Recorded with Belgian producer Geert D’Haene and mastered by highly acclaimed Italian engineer Giovanni Versari (Muse), Halo Pt 1 coaxes intrigue with its brief breath of an opener, Proemio an atmospheric piece of suggestion which does not really give a clue to things to come but makes a thought involving lead into the EP’s waiting title track. The vocals of Alex Palladini instantly hold ears, his distinct expression cradled by vines of wiry melody from Mike Tomasini’s guitar. Prowled by the dark tone of the Max Andrini’s bass which sounds almost irritable against the post rock/ progressively woven tapestry of guitars and keys, the song absorbs ears and thoughts. Its bursts into more boisterous life driven by the skilled swings of drummer Vince Picciolo makes for a rousing finale with an intensity further explored within its successor.

Bitter End similarly has some restraint in its gait also but welcomes thicker shadows in its climate as synths with a Nine Inch Nails like air wrap the senses. Again there is a great drama and energy in the vocals whether they emotively croon or passionately roar, a blend matched in the sound as the track blossoms turn by turn. Built on emotional and physical crescendos, the song is a magnet for the imagination, only increasing its potency with every listen, as indeed does the EP, as fresh layers are discovered.

The dark rock essence within the song is escalated within the final trio of tracks; Diving Into The Black coming first with its rock pop/gothic rock fusion. There was a whisper of Dommin to the previous track, a spicing far richer here as the track infectiously strolls and emotionally flames. Synths are an evocative incitement, rhythms a forceful enticing, whilst the guitars almost flirt with their sonic mix of light and dark enterprise.

The melancholic caress of Twilight Fall is even more awash with the hues of the previously mentioned US band though its shadowed seduction is soon baring its own unique soul as Palladini shares heart and word within a siren of emotionally bare sound. Its outstanding temptation is soon matched in lure and might by closing track Leaving Again, a slice of virulent contagious rock repeating Waiting For Titor’s craft at entangling dark and light in an emotional rousing and provocative proposal. It is a song which declares itself the lead into the creative heart of the band though sharing best track honours with its predecessor.

The Halo EP is a truly potent first listen to Waiting For Titor which only increasingly impresses and entices with every subsequent outing into its dark exploration. Its individuality in sound and invention might not be for all, though it is hard to imagine many turning away, but for a great many others a budding affair will be on the cards.

Halo Pt 1 is released through Diva Records on June 2nd and will be available @ https://waitingfortitor.bandcamp.com/album/halo-part-1

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Pete RingMaster 01/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Abel Raise The Cain – For Strangers Only

With a sound that wraps the senses like suggestive mist and a handful of songs taking the imagination on atmospheric, intimacy fuelled journeys, it is fair to say that the debut album from British rock band Abel Raise The Cain has been a highly anticipated proposition. Their fusion of evocative textures and energies within an indie pop/post rock nurtured landscape has made for an increasingly devoured and acclaimed live and recorded proposal, persuasion and success sure to be accelerated by For Strangers Only.

The album sweeps across the senses with a melodic breeze, each track an insight to emotion soaked lives and familiar situations. They swoop in on individual experiences, cinematic perceptions which if you put a series of kitchen sink dramas back to back would make the perfect soundtrack while stretching their intimacy to broader climes. Without a breath being taken, each song emerges from the last with just the whispers and glimpses of eclectic life between them, sometimes subtle reflections sometimes bold as “Dead Presidents, Revolutionary movement leaders and mixed up youth” bridge songs. It makes for a release which needs numerous plays to explore every alluring pasture and suggestive street corner but a simmering increasingly compelling blossoming which only brings increasingly striking rewards.

The 2012 formed, Northeast hailing Abel Raise The Cain draw on the inspirational sounds of bands like Arcade Fire, Sigur Ros, and The Editors for their adventures, open essences woven into their own canny tapestries. Both tracks of their debut double A-sided single, Too Late and The Promise, quickly drew eager praise and support including regular play on UK radio including BBC Introducing, the band continuing to lure plaudits and new ardour led fans with their successors; songs making powerfully persuasive teasers before For Strangers Only.

The album opens with Awakening, its orchestral welcome warm and descriptive as cinematic samples rise within its embrace. The short piece lives up to its name, opening the heart of the album with smouldering grace before freeing the equally seductive and euphoric flight of One Thing. With the romancing of Saerla Murphy’s violin cradling the engaging dusty tones of guitarist Sean Crichton as the keys of Gaz Murray float, the song is a vibrant outlook and stroll urged on by the tenacious beats of Adam Hicks.

Its anthemic and tenacious call is echoed within the following We’ll Never Know, the track swiftly revealing darker shadows around its radiant core. Within it, the bass of Gary Hughes manages to be simultaneously melancholic and flirtatiously welcoming as keys and strings come to a poetic boil in tandem with the melodic enterprise from Shaun Buckle’s guitar. The post rock climate of the song only grows across its length, consuming ears with wistful yet forceful intent before Black Swans bubbles to the surface. One of the singles sparking the eagerness awaiting For Strangers Only, the song brews its melancholy lined, heartbreak hued croon with craft and zeal, breaking into emotional crescendos as violin and keys respectively comfort and invigorate the spirit. Reminding a little of Doves, the song is superb, a cathartic release for band and listener alike.

The folkish air of Dark Side Of The Street keeps ears and imagination just as keenly hooked, the song a gentle but enthused canter sharing melodic and harmonic enterprise like sunshine. For some yet undefined reason, the song nudges thoughts of Pete Wylie before a country scented rural sigh slips into the similarly flavoured Million Dollar Night, a ruminative slice of balladry which may not quite light personal fires as other moments within the album but still leaves pleasure full, especially with an essence something akin to The Verve

Hideaway is a similar encounter with matching results; its country rock lilt and sultry smoulder a plaintive temptation breeding spirited expulsions across an expressive body. It also just misses persistently hitting the spot yet is one rousing experience impossible not to be drawn back to.

The album departs with the band’s new single, Every Rise. With hope falling from every note and harmony, the song is a thrilling end, a spirit igniting anthem of life with boisterous rhythms urging and melody rich flames licking at the imagination.

Each track is an individual exploration but For Strangers Only equally works like a symphony, each song a movement in its social and emotional tour. Certainly the first couple of listens are fine enjoyment but thereon in is where the magic happens.

For Strangers Only is released March 31st

http://www.abelraisethecain.com/    https://www.facebook.com/AbelRaiseTheCain    https://twitter.com/abelraise

Pete RingMaster 30/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Soundscapism Inc. – Desolate Angels

Cover artwork and booklet design by João Filipe, based on photos by Ü-Berlin Photography.

Cover artwork and booklet design by João Filipe, based on photos by Ü-Berlin Photography.

Desolate Angels is the eagerly awaited sophomore release from Soundscapism Inc., a highly anticipated successor to a debut which made a potent and well-received impact on the European post rock scene. The new offering is sure to emulate, indeed surpass the success of its predecessor with its even more accomplished, imaginative, and warmly haunting adventure.

Soundscapism Inc. is the solo project of Berlin based musician Bruno A., the founder of Portuguese/ Finnish bred band Vertigo Steps. When that band went on an unspecified ‘hiatus’, Bruno began bringing his own creative exploration to light with the release of the self-titled Soundscapism Inc. EP late 2015 quickly enticing ears and praise with its cinematic ambience, post rock climates, and acoustic beauty. It was more of an album with its nine captivating tracks and the base for the even more creatively expressive and magnetic Desolate Angels. The new evolution and craft in the project’s tapestry of sound and character was hinted at by a couple of tracks released from it towards the end of year but now in its full glory, it is a compelling proposal expanding well beyond their promise.

Swiftly as immersive and cinematically suggestive as the first release, Desolate Angels immediately caresses ears with Evening Lights. A guitar melody wraps its tender arms around ears first, additional lures warmly and firmly whispering before the track settles into an even mellower atmospheric landscape. Guest vocals from Flávio Silva subsequently emerge to add their captivating croon as Bruno’s guitar and keys weave a portrait of poetic post rock and ambient beauty. It is melancholy with a tempering charm and alluring tinges of harsher rock ‘n’ roll and quite bewitching.

The potent tones of Silva also feature on the following Supernovas At Fever Pitch, the song from another reserved opening firmly blossoming in sound and texture before his appearance, thoughtful melodies and an elegantly solemn yet again enticing air greeting him. From its initial simmer, an increasingly infectious energy and enterprise brews with a touch of Maybeshewill to it, this awakening bringing thicker wiry grooves and richer but restrained intensity to further ignite the track’s evocative heart. As the first track, it lures the imagination with ease, almost preys on it before The Mourning After pt II coaxes the listener into its relatively brief emotionally rousing instrumental waltz, subsequently leaving on a wash of melodic reflection.

Zwischenspiel I similarly draw ears into a melody persuasive romancing of thoughts and senses, its intimate seduction the echo of broader but also solitary pastures; an emotional closeness also found within the album’s title track where innocence feels shadowed by darker lurking trespasses. Touching the outskirts of ten minutes in length, Desolate Angels provides a flight of contrasting drama; dark and light toying with the imagination as Bruno conjures a soundscape of raw and equally radiant sound and suggestion which tempts like a fusion of  Sigur Rós and 65daysofstatic at times, his vocals an euphonious caress.

Through the inescapably infectious and constantly shifting stroll of Man In The Glass and the calm crystalline smoulder of Zwischenspiel II the individual presence and sound of Soundscapism Inc. is cemented, any hint offered by references to others like God Is An Astronaut for the second of this pair, just clues to something fresh and provocative.

The appetite pleasing voice of Silva makes its final appearance within next up February North, his voice a great mix of grainy and melodious temptation wrapped in the acoustic ethereal grace of Bruno’s touch and craft, essences just as refined and persuasive in the evocation spun by next up Quintessence around a narrative of vocal samples.

The album simply continues to bewitch and entice, firstly through the livelier exploits of Low-Fi Man, Hi-Tech World, the song a melody woven aural film with its rhythmic tenacity like the flickering roll of cinematic stills combining for a mesmeric visual incitement. Its striking presence is followed by the instrumental grace of Zwischenspiel III, it also a piece again with emotive shadows, and a short reprise of the title track before the increasingly beguiling Sleep Arrives Under Your Wings adds a surf rock glisten to its celestial beauty and resonance. The track is manna for ears and imagination, quickly followed by emotions and makes a magnificent close to the release though the evocative kiss of bonus track Above Us Only Sky provides the actual final moments of the album’s digital version.

There is plenty to take in aurally and emotionally within the hour of Desolate Angels, more than arguably can be assessed and appreciated in one go though perseverance in that vein only brings thick rewards. Each track works just as potently alone or in small clusters too so whichever way you approach it real pleasure and fulfilment is the result. Bruno and Soundscapism Inc. have stepped upon a new plateau with Desolate Angels with easy to suspect even bigger inventive and striking ventures to come from him.

Desolate Angels is available through Ethereal Sound Works now @ https://soundscapisminc.bandcamp.com/

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Pete RingMaster 05/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Three Days From Retirement – If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall

Pic - Roisin Smith

Pic – Roisin Smith

Released last November, If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall, the latest EP from Scottish post rock band Three Days From Retirement (3DFR) is seemingly and deservedly getting a fresh push to spark new attention. The four-track EP is the result of a busy 2015 which also saw the Edinburgh hailing outfit eagerly embark on recording sessions, gigs, and a successful single. It is also evidence of the reason why the band’s cinematic post rock explorations are beginning to create a stir.

Formed in 2013, 3DFR take inspiration from the likes of Mogwai and Explosions in the Sky into their persistently evolving sound and invention. The following year featured the release of the band’s self-titled debut EP which eventually led to a link up with Infinite Hive Music and the unveiling of first single What Is Dead May Never Die last year. It was swiftly followed by the well-received If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall, which as suggested seems to be being given a new push to kick start another potent year for the quartet of Matty McGhie, David Henderson, Joe Warnock, and Matthew Floody.

Produced, mixed and mastered by Tony Doogan, the EP opens with Avalanche Error which instantly and gently lures ears and imagination into a melancholic yet inviting soundscape. Guitars and keys align like a meeting of planetary bodies to immerse the slow but ripe rhythmic canvas with melodic and suggestive caresses. A fine but expressive mix of cold laced shadows and an emotive colouring of sonic tempting only add to the restrained yet kaleidoscopic nature of the song and its tapestry of sound, a weave which grows a sense of volatility over time. Like an aural aurora borealis erupting with bolder and thicker drama as textures and intensity expand, the track is a poetic and magnetic start to the release.

art_RingMasterReviewIn contrast to the more earthbound feel of its predecessor, Shatner’s Rhapsody shares a spatial ambience with ears and thoughts next. Similarly it has elegance and intimate charm to its character whilst it’s blending of textures and emotional shades this time explores a more celestial atmosphere. Subsequently revealing an imposingly dark and weighty drama, the track transfixes before By the Power of Grayskull offers a more comfortable and romantic flight for the listener to discover, immerse in, and interpret. From virtually the song’s first touch, the funky tone of the bass provides a lure for the body, backed by the magnetic shuffle of beats, whilst the melodic mystique and shoegaze scented air and nature of guitars has ears and mind enthralled.

Spooky Action Across Distance brings the release to a haunting close; vocal reflection adding to the theatre of sound and imagination which is nothing less than a compelling persuasion. Though maybe not impacting as commandingly on personal tastes and emotions as the tracks before it, the track leaves thoughts eagerly busy and pleasure full whilst revealing another side to the band’s invention. The fact the emotive vocal/sonic union reminds of the Scars track Your Attention Please, does it no harm either.

Three Days From Retirement is beginning to command attention with many reasons why contained within the highly enjoyable If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall; a release as suggested deserving of another wave of attention from media and fresh listeners alike, especially fans of bands such as The Cure, Mogwai, Russian Circles, and Sigur Ros.

The If We Keep Walking Eventually We’ll Fall EP is out now via Infinite Hive Music at https://3daysfromretirement.bandcamp.com/album/if-we-keep-walking-eventually-well-fall-off and most online stores.

Upcoming live dates:

Friday March 18th 2016, Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh

Sunday March 20th 2016, Nice ‘n Sleazy, Glasgow

Friday April 22nd 2016, Banshee Labyrinth, Edinburgh

Tuesday May 10th 2016, Audio, Glasgow

https://www.facebook.com/THREEDAYSFROMRETIREMENT   https://twitter.com/3dfruk

Pete RingMaster 14/03/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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We Were Promised Jetpacks – Unravelling

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Pungent in sound and emotion, Unravelling is a proposition which simultaneously makes a big impact and worms sneakily away under the skin and into the psyche. The new and third album from Scottish rockers We Were Promised Jetpacks, it is a riveting exploration, an adventure capturing ears and imagination like there is no tomorrow. Everything about the album is thick, in rhythmic persuasion, emotive intimacy, and raging melodies, but equally there is a clarity allowing every individual drama to play out their narratives musically and emotionally. The Edinburgh band has never been low on attention grabbing enterprise and songwriting but Unravelling is a coming of age, We Were Promised Jetpacks gracing a new plateau in invention and sonic expression.

Formed in 2008 by friends and vocalist/guitarist Adam Thompson, drummer Darren Lackie, bassist Sean Smith, and guitarist Michael Palmer whilst the four were at University, We Were Promised Jetpacks soon became a potent presence on the Glasgow music scene and almost as quickly were snapped up by FatCat Records. Debut album These Four Walls was unveiled in 2009 to critical acclaim, leading the band to an intense run of shows and festival appearances as well as supporting bands like Frightened Rabbit and The Twilight Sad. After the release of The Last Place You’ll Look EP the following year, the band set about second album In the Pit of the Stomach, which was recorded at Sigur Ros’s Sundlaugin Studios in Iceland. Again fans and media devoured it keenly and with praise whilst the band’s live reach saw them hit the US to great success. Now the band is set to recharge the passions with Unravelling, a release looking lyrically at “the notion of a conflicted protagonist struggling to keep their life on course, while battling a creeping sense of uncertainty and impending doom.” The first release featuring new member and multi-instrumentalist Stuart McGachan, and recorded with Paul Savage (Teenage Fanclub, King Creosote, The Twilight Sad, Mogwai), Unravelling is a tempestuous flight for senses and thoughts. Its climate is sultry and sonically hazy, its emotion tense and tenacious, but mostly the album is simply an inescapable captivation.

Safety In Numbers opens up the release, an increasingly brewing caress of keys the first touch before melodies and shadows slip into the emerging landscape of the song. Thompson’s vocals bring a plainer but no less expressive essence, his Scottish accent adding to the colour of the unveiling narrative. Instantly it is an enthralling persuasion, the walls and intensity of the track growing and thickening as an emotive wash reminding of fellow Scots Letters, immerses the imagination. There is also an unrelenting persistence to the encounter which is almost erosive in its effect, a potency which is never far away from the heart of every song on Unravelling, but a relentless baiting unafraid to share time with flowing enterprise and inventive twists which flirt across the track.

Its successor Peaks And Troughs is the same in many ways, a seduction of even catchier endeavour and sonic ingenuity which blossoms on the muscular and intensive persistence. The bass of Smith digs into darker throatier but virulent temptation whilst the imposing beats of Lackie swing with strong and imposing relish, the combination a gripping core and driving energy upon which the evocative and colourful design of guitar and keys matched by the excellent vocals flourish. The song pushes the strong start up another level with ease, a peak swiftly matched by the shimmering warmth and melodic calm of I Keep It Composed. To that elegant side though, the song explores another almost cavernous expanse of rhythmic intimidation and contagion resulting in an absorbing and hypnotic embrace. Its texture is as thick as smog and presence as radiant as the sun’s touch, and quite scintillating.

The following Peace Sign brings a less intensive and imposing approach to ears but is similarly as chunky in its rhythmic growl and weight and as slim in its excesses. The bass of Smith again excels, swaggering and flirting with grizzled majesty whilst the guitars of Palmer and Thompson weave engrossing structures and hues around the latter’s ever potent vocal suasion. Less an epidemic than a slow infestation with its resourceful might and beauty, the song is dazzling and the perfect set up for the similarly impressing Night Terror. A heavy stroll of beats sets up a frame around electro funk revelry at first, keys and drums subsequently aligning for a bubbly and vivacious coaxing before a sultry haziness kisses the surface of all and a Josef K like causticity treats the senses. It is an intrigue drenched offering which is less urgent and compulsive than previous songs whilst giving a new aspect to the album’s expanding character and richly satisfying experience.

The dark and moody drama of Disconnecting comes next; weighty keys spawning a sinister, noir wrapped climate within which vocals shimmer and percussion dances. It is a slow haunting embrace with sinew sculpted textures and melancholic radiance, which may not quite match those tracks before it in some ways but surpasses them in menacing scenery and emotional shading. Its success is matched by both Bright Minds and A Part Of It, the first a lighter but no less emotionally attentive encounter and its successor a rawer, abrasing swamp of sonic mystique and craft around a hungry rhythmic persuasion. Again neither quite lives up to the opening clutch of songs but certainly bring new delicious twists to the flight and emotional examination of the album.

Through the darker air and almost predatory intent of the excellent Moral Compass, a song just as striking in its melodic grace as it is in its bordering on caustic breath, and the mesmeric almost stately beauty of Peace Of Mind, band and album enslave ears and thoughts majestically. The almost epic instrumental grandeur of the second of the pair is a journey all of its own, the imagination unavoidably wrapped up and sparking from its sonic emprise, before final song Ricochet provides a lasting tempest of dramatic clouds and melodic tenacity within another blistering frame of invention and emotion.

Unravelling is an album which grips from the off but makes an even greater and thrilling impression the more time it is allowed to submerge and colour the senses. It is the finest hour of We Were Promised Jetpacks with ease and surely the doorway to a new level of attention and fervour towards the band’s spellbinding sound.

Unravelling is available via FatCat Records now @ http://fatcat.sandbaghq.com/we-were-promised-jetpacks-unravelling.html

http://www.wewerepromisedjetpacks.co.uk

RingMaster 14/10/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Silhouettes – Ever Moving Happiness Machines

   Silhouettes pic

    Silhouettes last single Gold Tag offered a sizeable hint and thrilling teaser for the UK indie/electro band’s debut album, a taster which itself has continued to grow and impress since our coverage of its charms. Now that Ever Moving Happiness Machines has arrived all anticipations and expectations of the release have been fed and fully satisfied. The ten track encounter is an intriguing and inspiring slice of creative diversity and poetic imagination, a proposition which ignites the senses and thoughts in a richly varied and at times challenging way for an enthralling incitement which never leaves a moment devoid of emotive provocation or absent from riveting drama.

Hailing from Wolverhampton and formed in 2008, Silhouettes has earned themselves a sizeable reputation for their sound and live performances, a presence more than complemented by a couple of EPs. It was Gold Tag though which has arguably been the spark to a greater spotlight, its more electronic seeded presence a fascinating and tantalising evolution in the band’s sound. Created by Nathan Till (vocals, guitars), Jay Cuthill (guitars, keyboards, drums), and Ben Blewitt (keyboards), Ever Moving Happiness Machines has the potential and certainly the invention to push the band to the next level, and with a line-up completed by Xander Roberts (bass, vocals) and Ben Dargue (drums) live, Silhouettes is poised to take intensely emotive electronic music by storm.

Ever Moving Happiness Machines does not come without the occasional less impacting twist or turn but from the opening Gold Silhouettes coverTag it is an unrelenting feast of striking enterprise and emotional exploration which has ears and imagination hungry for the album’s impressive offerings. The first track immediately unveils an eighties influence, a flavouring which occurs throughout the album, as small but vivacious guitar crafted melodies entice the ears. As they find themselves joined by a magnificent and robustly throaty bassline there is a strong essence of The Farmers Boys at play, a spice which takes on a definite Orange Juice tang as keys and the great vocals of Till add to the exotically vibrant picture. The song strolls with a masterful confidence which in turn recruits a bold reaction from feet and emotions, its crystalline key sculpted melodies and expressive harmonies a seductive glaze to the contagious waltz. It is a glorious entrance which in its fullest form has appetite and imagination aflame especially through its ridiculously addictive rhythmic closing stretch.

From the lively enticement the album glides into the glistening evocative embrace of Creaking Universe. Its initial lure sparkles like sonic crystal, the keys erupting like dust in a shaft of light before a melancholic shadow and croon clouds over ears to tempt them with its darker touch vocally and musically. Slipping into a seductive breeze which soothes the ears and intrigues emotions, the song from a decent beginning becomes a potent magnet, its ever increasing pull through string orchestrated melodies and brooding textures masterful. Imagine The National meets the Walker Brothers and you have an idea of the voice and might of the track.

The next up Sacrifice is another track which needs time to grow but does so with immense success. It opens with a celestial blaze of electronic persuasion, an Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark like wind hugging the senses before the falsetto charm of the vocals lie romantically upon the ears. First impressions are strong and rewarding but as with quite a few tracks on the album, it is one which deviously works away leaving a haunting toxin which repeats time and time again, to return at any moment unannounced. The exciting track is instantly emulated by Cold Water/Grey Flesh, its chillier climate and singular expression a bewitching temptation which again is strong at first but masterful over time. With the keys casting an almost intrusive web which the guitars and vocals unveil colourful and poignant hues over, the song dances elegantly seeping a stark breath of lost hope and scenery. It is a highly evocative narrative which could be described as Joy Division meets Sigur Ros.

The intensive melancholy of I Miss You, I Want You, I Need You, I Love You carries a rich Radiohead vein to its despondent emotion and cold breath. It is an impressively crafted and presented piece of music and emotion but for personal demands fails to strike the flame other songs on the release do so easily, though the flume of strings create a resonating tempting for the imagination to immerse within. It is not a low point but one personal taste cannot connect with, something the brilliant Prufrock’s Dream has no trouble achieving. The new single from band and album is an enthralling adventure of sound and imagination. Written as the sequel to the TS Eliot poem The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock, the song teases ears with a sultry guitar weave at first before expanding into an exotically rhythmic and mystique soaked flame of sonic and melodic seduction. The guitars continue to bind the senses in a psychedelic glaze of Eastern promise and thought inciting majesty whilst the voice of Till croons with potent expression and absorbing texture. As it persistently flirts with ears and emotions entwining radiance and shadows, whispers of the likes of Teardrop Explodes, The Verve, and Nick Cave make their presence known in a song which is scintillatingly original and unique to Silhouettes.

Both Scuff Marks and Ferry Me Away slip in the wake of their glorious predecessor, though again it is primarily down to preferences. The first has a pulsating core and evocative ambience which increases potently over the length of the song for an enveloping climax, but again with a Radiohead similar breath it fails to spark any real reaction, though Silhouettes is a much more exciting proposition to be fair. Its successor also carries that Thom Yorke and co breeding but evolves into an emotionally infectious play with melodic toxins which seduce with wanton ease and a folk bred gentleness which elevates it to a stronger footing. Neither are songs to pass over swiftly but possibly suffer being stuck between the triumphs of Prufrock’s Dream and the outstanding Black Within The Black, a track unafraid to show its roots in the early days of The Cure. With the bass rapturous bait and rhythms pure anthemic lure, the track is an unbridled temptress to which Till brings his own style of haunted tones and expression for exceptional success. The song invades and seduces every pore and thought to provide another heady pinnacle.

Closing with the climactic Boys, a track from small melodic and expressive seeds grows into an epically shaped tower of intense emotion and powerfully evocative colour, Ever Moving Happiness Machines is a gripping adventure which provides a kaleidoscope of invention and imagination, not forgetting creative passion. It is not an album which quite succeeds with every chapter, but is a radiant success across its whole body as Silhouettes more than delivers on their original promise.

Ever Moving Happiness Machines is available via Integrity Records now!

http://silhouettesmusic.net/

8.5/10

RingMaster 02/06/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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