Neverlanded – F.u.U

Voracious in breath, bold in imagination, and a touch irritable in character the sound fuelling the debut EP from UK trio Neverlanded makes no concessions to expectations as they provide one of the more exciting and intriguing introductions heard over recent months. A feisty and uncompromising mix of grunge, alternative rock, and punk rock with an appetite for stoner hues, it is within the F.u.U EP, a striking confrontation as belligerent as it is brazenly adventurous.

Roaring out of North London, Neverlanded consists of vocalist/guitarist Pete Bloom, bassist/guitarist Niki Jester, and drummer Jaca Freer. Initially formed as an online project in 2017, the band has since released a trio of singles to stir up some attention which F.u.U, its full title being the Fluffy Unicorns United EP, can only forcibly escalate. Inspirations to the EP’s sound include the likes of Placebo, L7, Silverchair, Garbage, Nirvana, Cranberries, Pixies and Refused; a selection which gives you a good inkling of its breeding and heart if not its open individuality to those influences.

Neverlanded are giving the Margo Broom (Arrows of Love, Yassassin, Calva Louise) recorded EP available free to anyone who donates money to Mermaids UK, a charity the band eagerly and effortlessly supports in its work supporting children, young people, and their families to achieve a happier life in the face of great adversity including raising awareness about gender nonconformity in children and young people amongst the general public.

F.u.U pounces from the speakers with Brainsane first up, an initial melodic lure enough of a coaxing to set the senses in the face of a swift wall of noise though that too is a quick trespass as sonic calm and vocal prowess bridges another raw surge. Within it all Jester’s bass immediately proven manna to personal tastes but was as resourcefully matched by the biting swings of Freer and the fuzzy exploits of Bloom’s guitar. There is a definite Nirvana meets Pixies spicing to the song but that only added to its imposing magnetism and tempting snarl.

The following MesS.O.S. bursts from the speakers with punk ferocity but soon bounced along with appetite gripping unpredictability and noise rock infused grunge bred self-appraisal. That initial punk causticity still persists though fuelling the track’s rousing antics and agitated frenzy; the result a brief and severely appetising slice of punk ‘n’ roll before This Friend of Mine soothed an inflamed spirit with its invitingly crawling melodic stroll. It is a track where you can see those Placebo and Pixies references seeded but again flavours embraced and mutated into Neverlanded’s own inimitable sonic concoction. A blend of the feral and seductive, the track simply added to the compelling persuasion of the EP.

Scream4icecream completes the quartet of incitements, a song from its first bass amidst crispy beats burrowing under the skin and increasing its slavery through vocal snares and sonic wiring. The track is superb as are all enticements within an EP which had us quickly hooked and greedy thereon in.

How Neverlanded evolve from this impressive moment we will see but anticipation of that adventure is as ripe as the enjoyment with F.u.U was rich; so go explore and remember you can support a great cause at the same time.

The F.u.U EP is released April 1st, for more info go to https://www.neverlanded.com/home  and https://www.facebook.com/neverlandedband/

Pete RingMaster 02/04/2019

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Exploring the lures of The Lunar Effect

Hailing from London in the UK, The Lunar Effect is a band making a potent impression on the Capital’s live scene and through their debut EP, Strange Lands released last year. We caught up with the band to find out more exploring origins, inspirations, the muse of “demon seductress soul stealing women” and more….

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 and what brought you all together?

We are Jon, Dan, Josh and Brett and we are The Lunar Effect. It all started with Jon messing around with some solo songs which then developed into a gigging band. Jon’s brother Dan joined, then after a few gigs with other musicians Brett came in on bass. Josh joined soon after that when he answered an advert we put out for a singer. Job done!

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

Yeah, we have all been in different bands and played as solo artists. You learn from the mistakes you have made in previous bands and try to avoid doing the same thing. It is important finding band members you get along with on a personal level; being a good musician just isn’t enough if you’re also a prize bell-end. If you’re not getting along it can seep into the music you make, then you’ll find it influences the style and direction you take going forwards. That’s why when we put an advert out for a singer we specifically said no dickheads.

What inspired the band name?

A lot of people often think it is because Jon has a daughter named Luna, but the band came first and it’s spelt differently anyway so we can nip that one in the bud. It is actually inspired by the moon and all of the elements in life that its cycles and phases had been said to affect through time, whether true or not.

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

We all just wanted to be musicians and write music, so forming a band is obviously what you do. It has taken a while to find the right people, but now we hope we can offer something a bit different. Basically some really good songs as an alternative to a lot of the rubbish that’s out in the mainstream right now.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

The goal remains the same. It’s always been about making good music with good people and having a laugh along the way. If we can make money from doing this then that’s a bonus. As time goes on you learn to be more selective with things like which gigs to take and which to pass on. You also learn where the pitfalls and charlatans are and how to avoid dealing with them.

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

When the band first started it was mainly songs that Jon had already written himself that we just tweaked. We had a more lo-fi, grungy sound. As we have settled and grown into the new line up we have pushed ourselves more and found a sound drawing on all our influences.

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

Originally it was more organic, with each of us bringing in new ideas and influences. It just started to flow over time until we felt we were happy with it. Now we try to build on our sound by trying new ideas and pushing the boundaries, experimenting with new styles and noise while still keeping that vintage sound that is our essence.

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?

We like all sorts, from 70’s bands like Black Sabbath and Pink Floyd to bands like Soundgarden and Silverchair. There are a load of great bands around at the moment that people may not necessarily have heard of, like The Heavy Eyes, Mars Red Sky, Kaleidobolt, etc. The list goes on.

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

It varies from song to song, but our latest songs usually come out of refining a jam or a riff. Sometimes it takes us weeks to finish an idea, other times they’re finished quicker than it takes to play it through which is cool. We’re good at criticising each other too, bad ideas don’t last long.

 Where, more often than not, are inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs found?

As far as inspiration’s go we cover the classics; women, drugs, women on drugs, demon seductress soul stealing women, trivial existences, crippling pain and yeah, the classics.

Give us some background to your latest release.

Our last release was an EP called Strange Lands. It’s very much sci-fi themed, from the cover to the lyrics and everything in between. Our first full album should be out by the end of the year. It’s shaping up to be a bit of a belter. You can see us performing a song from it for Hunter Studios Live sessions here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFrGNrBJXrU

 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?

Generally we like to have the bones of the songs all rehearsed and gig tested. Then we can experiment with different techniques and add more layers to the track if we find something that fits and improves the song as a whole. We make sure we record more than we need, that way we can try out new ideas, see what works and what doesn’t and then cherry pick the best stuff.

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

Well I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily our favourite part but obviously we do enjoy it. We also enjoy writing and recording in the studio.  We always have fun at live shows though, as hopefully do the people who come out to watch us.

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

No, it’s hard locally as most local venues keep closing and everyone just goes to Wetherspoons. In London it’s the complete opposite. There is an oversaturation of venues which makes it harder to promote, especially with all the high entry fees, though you do learn with experience as we said earlier on. Gigging in Europe is a good idea. The promotion and pay can be a lot better and it’s all generally better organised. They really look after you.

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 as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

The internet is good for self-promotion and getting stuff out there, though getting people to actually click and listen is still difficult. It would be interesting to know how many of the people that read this interview will then go on to actually check our stuff out. Again, it is a good thing if you have the money behind you to pay professionals to handle the social media side for you, but that goes against what it is meant to be in the first place.

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

Just thanks for taking the time to read this and we hope that you do check us out on Facebook and all the other sites. You never know, we could be your next favourite band.

Check The Lunar Effect out further @ https://www.facebook.com/TheLunarEffect/  and https://thelunareffect.bandcamp.com

Pete RingMaster 06/12/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The February Coma – Light It Up EP

The February Coma

Hailing from Flint, Michigan and consisting of vocalist/guitarist Jim Miller and drummer Jason Rood, alternative rock duo The February Coma is a bit of a mystery other than that, Their bio, apart from listing the likes of Alkaline Trio, Billy Talent, The Black Keys, QOTSA, NIN, Silverchair, and Jack White as artists the pair have a liking for, gives little away outside of the basics. Their new EP Light It Up is another matter, the three track release revealing a band which is soaked in potential and imagination. The EP like the band’s sound is definitely work in progress and comes with a few limitations but the promise and satisfaction produced by the accomplished release only goes to awaken a certain appetite for the band.

Released via Honyock Records, the Light It Up EP opens with its title track and instantly through the gritty riffs and punchy rhythms steals attention its way. There is a riveting groove to the song which wraps keenly around the ear whilst a heavy bass tone unleashes a deeper coaxing. It is a strong start which is tested slightly by the vocals of Miller, his punkish tones not always holding notes and fluency as tightly as you would wish or as engagingly as the song needs. Nevertheless the track rumbles along with 67401potent musical lures and heavy rock tempting which though it holds no major surprises provides plenty of bait to get the imagination into and emotions stoked by.

The following Red also opens with a strongly appealing beckoning of guitar, it’s almost grinding riffery an immediate captivation complimented by the tempered rhythms of Rood and a better balance of vocals. As the first song it does not quite explode into action as expected but does leave another healthy enticement of sonic endeavour and melodic enterprise, offering plenty to suspect a robust future for the band as they and their sound evolves into a more individual presence. The strongest track on the EP, it captivates from start to finish with a blues kissed guitar craft and infectious riffery which impresses throughout.

The closing Shed A Tear slips into a slower gait though punctuates its roaming with bursts of sonic flame and emotive energy. Again there is seemingly a spark missing which prevents it greedily rampaging in the passions but equally with excellent guitar play from Miller it grips a level of attention and satisfaction which sculpts a big impression in thoughts.

As stated earlier band and sound is definitely still emerging as a presence and identity with arguably a fair way yet to go but Light It Up shows that the band is undoubtedly on the right course and armed with all that is needed to provide a wealth of greater encounters in the future. With attention to the vocals needed, whether from Miller or with all respect to the musician by the addition of a third member in that department, The February Coma with their latest release sets themselves up as a proposition well worth keeping a keen eye on; definitely expect to hear more good things from them ahead.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-February-Coma/574401329245156

6.5/10

RingMaster 30/12/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Circle Of Reason: A Favour For A Stranger EP

Circle Of Reason Promo shot

From just the initial listens of A Favour For A Stranger, the new EP from alternative rockers Circle Of Reason you can feel this is a band with all the promise and ingredients to be a big force certainly in the UK rock scene ahead. The three track release is a compulsive slice of well-crafted melodic rock and boisterous energy honed with a fine progressive intent. The band has been compared to the likes of Smashing Pumpkins, Silverchair, Muse, and Queens of The Stone Age, in varying ways to which you can easily add Biffy Clyro and Inme. Circle Of Reason have their own template of sound though which sets them apart from the majority of similarly gaited bands and leaves a sense of excitement for their future whilst giving plenty of pleasure in the now.

The Southampton band was formed in 2009 and has made a steady progress building a strong presence in the South West of England also reaching further afield. Renowned for their live shows which has seen them alongside bands such as Girlschool, Fighting with Wire, Freeze the Atlantic, Landscapes, Idiom, Rumer, and The Smoking Hearts across the UK, the quartet of vocalist/guitarist Simon Osman, guitarist Gary Slade, bassist Sam Cogher, and drummer Andy Milwain, have now set down a marker with the new release which has to be the platform for them to go forth and seize major recognition. It is an impressive aural base camp to venture forward with further invention from, exploration of headier heights in their own evolving creative hands.

The release consists of two previous video singles, which have garnered good play and attention from the likes of Kerrang! TV, Circle Of Reason Cover ArtworkScuzz, and Lava TV, and a third track which is their new video single released to coincide with the EP. Chasing the Sun starts things off with big riffs and dazzling guitar play, a major feature of all three songs. Into its stride the song relaxes into a slightly reserved air as vocalist Osman joins the already intriguing song. He is a strong vocalist who especially excels when raising his vocal energies, though less striking when keeping it low key. He was also the cause of ignoring the majority of the song and release during the first couple of plays, as concentration could only be focused on who he sounded like. It is one of those frustrations which have to be alleviated with an answer before moving on, and thankfully, eventually it revealed itself. I have read him compared to Kurt Cobain (?) but actually he is a dead ringer for Paul Marsh from eighties band The Mighty Lemon Drops; of course that will mean nothing to most but just had to bring relief and closure to the ‘problem’. The song fires up throughout into strong melodic flames musically and in mass harmonies which leave the senses smouldering with contentment and glowing from the outstanding and precise guitar invention. Arguably still the weakness track on the release the excellent song is a deeply engaging piece of enterprise.

     Sea Of Voices is a feistier proposition, striking sinewy riffs grabbing eager attention whilst Osman sweeps through the song vocally nicely backed up by the rest of the band with group harmonies. The song is a thumping stomp with the rhythms of Milwain forming a formidable frame for the basslines of Cogher to badger and guitars of Osman and Slade to incite and dazzle. The progressive intent of the band is at its creative fullness on the track with a wonderful though brief magnetically whispering aside of peaceful melodic grandeur stepping forward before the fiery climax. Everything is in perfect proportion in the songs, the riotous riffs, impacting rhythms, and emotive melodic beauty finding a seamless place in the overall impressive energetic contagion without bleeding into or overwhelming their companions, this song the thrilling example.

The release is completed by the latest single Silver Scene, a track which alone shows why the band is being talked so highly of. Again blending the sturdiest rock and metal riffs with a bruising intensity and infectious melodic invention all brought with unmistakable skill, the song is an irresistible weave of imagination and thoughtful songwriting. From first note to last it is an inventive lure for the passions and inciter of emotions, a mischievous conveyor of barbed hooks and impossible to refuse rock n roll. Other than an opening few seconds where the levels feel smothered compared to the rest of the song, it is a near perfect treat and like the other songs the basis for great anticipation of big things ahead for the band.

A Favour For A Stranger is an excellent EP which just gets better and better with every listen whilst raising hopes that Circle Of Reason has an album in the works for the near future. This is a band you should treat yourselves too very soon.

https://www.facebook.com/circleofreason

RingMaster 01/12/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright