Millie Manders And The Shut Up – Shutup EP

It rapaciously rattles as it tenaciously rolls, aggressively snarls as it leaps around with viral infectiousness. No this is not a riddle but the sound of Millie Manders And The Shut Up on their new EP, Shutup; a proposition which had us instinctively drooling even before the first track of the inescapably mouth-watering release reached its finale.

London based, Millie Manders And The Shut Up stepped out in 2015, the band emerging from Millie’s solo career sharing ear grabbing acoustic enterprise which itself sprung from varied previous projects including Second Sense. With The Shutup around her vocal dexterity and prowess on the ukulele and alto saxophone, the band creates a punk rock bred incitement eagerly embracing varied flavours from pop punk to ska to aggression loaded alternative rock.  Similarly though, there are moments certainly within the Shutup EP, our introduction to the band, when essences of styles such as swing, new wave and R&B more than tease. It is truly an appetite rousing crossover flavour which with hindsight shows just why the first two EPs from the band, The Free-P and Obsession Transgression, were so warmly welcomed and praised by fans and media alike and now why, finding its fullest most adventurous character yet, it is a sound which seeds one of the year’s most exciting offerings.

The EP opens up with Right To Life, a shimmer of guitar caressing the immediately striking presence and voice of Millie as the song rises slowly but purposively to its feet. Its sepia jazz kissed sound is alluring enough, Lewis Slater’s guitar winding up the temptation, but it is just a smouldering kiss before the boisterous carnival of its stomp to come. A flick of its hips and the spontaneous burst of dancing flames from the trumpet of George Alan and the tenor sax of Dom Walker spring the track into contagious urgency; ska punk instincts entangling its more spiky rock endeavour as the track bounds along like a mix of Sonic Boom Six, No Doubt, and The Selector. Yet even with those easy to offer references, song and sound swiftly proves its own uniqueness with Millie herself vocally as individual as they come but with a  great whiff of Brody Dalle in league with Imelda May and Pauline Black.

The track is superb but instantly rivalled by its successors for favourite track honours here starting with Brave. The imposing ticking of a clock incites the muscular swings of drummer Alessandro Vitiello and as quickly the magnetic tones of Millie. Slipping into a slightly more restrained canter compared to its predecessor initially, the song carries a portentous air; an inviting threat which erupts with fiery blasts of brass searing its chorus placed expulsion. As with all tracks, the body was quickly manipulated by the captivating antics of the song, the imagination and appetite as quickly seduced and enslaved before the equally irresistible Lollipops launched its own compelling escapade. Again Vitiello’s beats thump away with relish and poise as the even grumpier bass of Matt Munford twangs with tenacity, the guitar adding its attitude lined riffery to the virulent slice of punk rock.

New single, One That Got Away, completes the creative scheming and magnificence. The coaxing of the fuzz lined guitar alone offers intoxicating hooks but every aspect of the song from rhythms, brass, and vocals breed their own distinctive barbs to be hooked and aroused by. It might be punk in its heart but as all tracks, it is pure rock ‘n’ roll; manna to the ear and instincts.

Millie Manders has been sharing the goodness for many years now but the Shutup EP is surely the moment attention explodes around the band; so just do what it says and get down to some serious inhibition free rocking.

The Shutup EP is out now @ https://milliemanders.bandcamp.com/album/shutup

Upcoming live shows:

October

25th – The Waterloo, Blackpool

November

9th – Pie Race, Warf Chambers, Leeds

10th – Breaking Barriers, Leuven, Belgium

December

1st – Fighting Cocks, Kingston

7th – The Harp Restrung, Folkestone

8th – Blueberry, Norwich

13th – Portland Arms, Cambridge

14th – Smokehouse, Ipswich

15th – Voodoo Lounge, Stanford

21st – Alma Inn, Bolton

22nd – The Bobbin, Lancaster

23rd – The Ainsty, York

https://www.facebook.com/milliemandersmusic/   https://twitter.com/milliemanders   https://www.instagram.com/milliemanders/

Pete RingMaster 03/10/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

K-Man & The 45s – Self Titled

Pic DannyDonnovan @bucketlistmr

This month sees the new romping stomping album from Canadian outfit K-Man & The 45s uncaged, a release which had the body bouncing and spirit roaring like a teenage boy after his first sexual adventure. The band creates a contagious proposition from a fusion of ska and rockabilly spiced classic rock ‘n’ roll with plenty more involved, a recipe providing their finest feast of sound yet within their self-titled full-length.

Hailing from Montreal, K-Man & The 45s has been a constant and acclaimed presence on the Canadian music scene; their records luring keen praise and support and live presence just as rich plaudits and a matching reputation. The band has shared stages with the likes of The Slackers, Big D and The Kids Table, The Satellites, The Original Wailers , The Planet Smashers, The Brains and so many more as well as graced and ignite a host of festivals across their homeland over the years. It is easy to suggest that their new album is their greatest moment yet and even easier to eagerly push it towards the attention of ska, punk and rock ‘n’ roll fans alike with the band embracing the inspirations of bands such as The Specials, The Beat, The Ramones, and The Cramps among their influences though it is fair to say K-Man and co have successfully nurtured their own individual character of sound as in thick evidence across the new record now getting its deserved push via Stomp Records.

Opener They Gotta Know had us hooked with its first breath, a classic rock ‘n roll guitar lure entangling ears and appetite before the song leaps into its punk rock swing. The jangle of Kman’s guitar flirts as the beats of Brian Smith arouse against the melodic dance of an organ; a potent enticement only enhanced by the dancing flames of Josh Michaud’s trombone and the trumpet of Seb Fournier. Bouncing along to the track’s body and stroll is inevitable, we can testify to that, as the song gets the album off to a rousing start.

The following Poppy’s Back In Town is just as manipulative, its rowdier rock colluding with the animated canter of keys and guitar with, as in its predecessor and every song, Kman’s vocal mischief leading the fun. Lively melodies and lustful hooks line its boisterous stroll before I Don’t Mind wheels in with an instantly appealing breeze easily reminding of The Beat. The band soon adds its own distinct colour to the song, adding a vocal backing in which participation is simply unavoidable. Smith’s clipping beats just get under the skin too, the brass n turn into the passions as the track lustily manipulates body and spirit.

Rudy Don’t Smoke equally had the body dangling from its virulent strands of sound and enterprise; its ska and punk collusion a devilish puppeteer with a glint in the eye of its imagination before Piece Of The Action bursts in with drama and intrigue which would not be out of place in the theme to a sixties TV spy/private detective show. With a Department S-esque hue to its theatre, the song is more than a match for the lofty heights of its predecessors as too the cosmic adventure of Space Thriller. Bringing the atmospheric prowess of The Specials into a surf rock spiced ska saunter the track has the same level of drama and intimation as the last song, its story a sultry seduction of lust and danger descriptively shaped by brass led enterprise.

Through the punk ‘n’ roll/ska bred stomp of Road Rage Randy and the fifties rock ‘n’ roll seeded ska spin of This Moment, pleasure only escalates with the album, each adding a new shade of sound and mischief to its party before a great cover of The Kingpins’ Party in Ja joins the fun. Giving its reggae nurtured catchiness a Ruts like dub makeover the track pulsates on the senses as again the body is lost to an instinctive bounce.

Next up is Johnny Thumbs a track which maybe did not inflame the passions as others around it but still made for the most enjoyable playmate before the outstanding Far Away Eyes Come Home simply became a love affair with ears. From its revolving hooks and melodic enticement to vocal and rhythmic invitation, the song devoured inhibitions.

The album finishes with another gem in What’s Inside A Girl, a glorious garage punk and rockabilly spun tease with a healthy psychobilly and surf rock glaze led by yet another delicious bassline among so many across the album from Frankie amidst the perpetual rhythmic incitement of Smith. The song epitomises the craft, sound, and contagious exploits of K-Man & The 45s perfectly whilst at the same time sealing its best track moment though that is debated with each and every listen.

K-Man & The 45s is a band which deserves the biggest attention within the ska, punk, and simply great rock ‘n’ roll world; all the reasons are in their new album so no hanging around go have fun.

Recently the sad news that drummer Brian Smith has terminal pancreatic cancer was announced and a Go Fund Me page set up to support him and his family. To help out this great musician and friend to so many go to https://gofundme.com/support-brian-our-brother

The K-Man & The 45s album is out digitally and on vinyl now @ https://k-manthe45s.bandcamp.com/album/k-man-the-45s

 https://www.facebook.com/kman45/   https://twitter.com/kmanandthe45s

Pete RingMaster 14/08/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Popes Of Chillitown – Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard

Releases which have us throwing feet, hips, and bodies around in an uninhibited frenzy are just as boisterously devoured here as those provoking thoughts and imagination into the same eager exploits. Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard, the new album from UK outfit Popes Of Chillitown is one such example, an encounter which stirs up every aspect of the human spirit across thirteen slices of what for the moment we will simply call ska punk but is so much more. The band and release swiftly had the body bouncing, energies uncaged, and mind feeding off its insightful social and personal lyrical intimation. It is one of those unforgettable, deviously manipulative propositions which will surely set Popes Of Chillitown on the way to being a household name far beyond the ska and punk scene.

From London, Popes Of Chillitown has already bred and nurtured a fine reputation across two albums and a live presence which has had venues and bodies bouncing, as the album now, with lustful participation. 2013 saw the release of their pledge-funded debut album A Word To The Wise, a keenly embraced encounter eclipsed by its even more eagerly received successor To The Moon two years later. Since that first offering, the sextet has further lit up the live scene, from the Capital bursting across the UK and into Europe sharing stages with the likes of Reel Big Fish, The Selecter, The Skints, Imperial Leisure, [Spunge], Mouthwash, The Snare and many more along the way.

As Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard swiftly reveals, the band’s sound has an irresistibility which borders on the viral. It is a fusion of upbeat ska, punk, 2-tone, dub, drum & bass, reggae, indie with plenty more flavoursome spices working away in the mix; a rousing incitement which never flirts with the predictable and across the new album, easily the band’s finest moment yet, persistently has body, imagination, and spirit bounding.

Straight away as intrigue coaxes ears there is a sense of drama and mischief at play which swiftly sparks opener Prang into life, the track springing along with wilful exuberance. The guitar of Tom Penn winds around ears from an already persuasive hook spraying stroll while the rhythmic prowess of bassist Arvin Bancil and drummer Jack Ashley gets under the skin in no time. Matt Conner’s rousing vocals are just as effective, listener participation we found inevitable and can keen testify to. The track is superb, its twist into discord and off kilter imagination icing on the stomp.

The flames of trombonist Ieuan Williams and saxophonist Jon Pryce open up the following Get Off/Get On, lighting the way to another persuasive saunter ridden by the increasingly captivating vocals of Conner. There is a touch of [Spunge] meets King Prawn to the track, a tasty flavouring quickly ignited by the band’s own raucously individual enterprise.

Fair to say Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard already had its temptation racing through our veins in two songs but raised the temperature of its persuasion even more with next up Vexed. Cored by a hook which had ears and appetite dangling like a fish on a rod as well as a glorious teasing yet taunting grumble of a bassline, the track instantly took the album’s seductive clamour to another level. Brewing an addictive roar something akin to The Mighty Mighty Bosstones meets Capdown with the rawer edge of The Hostiles, the track simply and quickly had us enslaved and adding our less able attributes.

The equally outstanding No Manners In Ireland is next, the song a web of twists and turns littered with creative hooks and melodic lures which seduce like sonic sirens. Guitars and vocals dance on the swagger of the rhythms, their dark lined joy seared with the soulful flames of brass as the song evolves in form and imagination across four minutes plus of pure magnetism. Its glory is matched by that of the far briefer but just as riveting Graveyard. A dub infested mix of Skindred and again King Prawn, the slither of a track just ignited the senses before Upside Down got the body rocking and rolling with its almost salacious bounce and antics.

Across the fiery ska fuelled punk ‘n’ roll of The Last Elephant and the swinging holler of Mr. Piotr, physical reaction is inescapable as thoughts invest in more of the band’s lyrical inference, both tracks cauldrons of drama and physical manipulation so easy to devour while the likes of What A Guy and Inner Peace add yet more variety and adventure to the album’s beauty. The first erupts from a haunting melancholic sigh into another inescapable to resist canter, voice and hips soon embroiled in its creative romp before its companion smoulders seductively on the senses with its less boisterous but just as tenacious reflection. From guitars to rhythms, brass to voice, the song serenades and seduces; volatility in its heart adding greater depth to its inventive cry and increasingly rising temperature and intensity.

Take Control is punk rock blessed with the ear clipping tenacity of ska; a rousing trespass of an incitement under a sweltering climate of suggestion cast by sax and trombone. Unsurprisingly again indulgence in its swing is unavoidable, a lack of discipline thankfully the whole of Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard exploits.

The album closes up with firstly the melodically shimmering Lego Prisoners, a track resembling what you might imagine emerging from the essences of Ruts DC, The Skints, and a calm Random Hand being locked in together, and lastly Culpa and its reggae brewed saunter where grooves and beats overwhelm restraints even before voice and hooks sink their temptation into ears.

It all makes for one deliciously riveting and rousing adventure going by the name of Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard. Popes Of Chillitown has been firing up the ska and punk scene pretty much from their first days but are now ready to be spoken in the same breath as those bands which immediately come to mind as inspirations to the across the array of styles the Londoners skilfully embrace and employ in their own adventure. After Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard they might just be the first name to lips.

Work Hard, Play Hard, See You In The Graveyard is out now on 12inch vinyl, CD and Digital Download @ https://popesofchillitown.bandcamp.com/album/work-hard-play-hard-see-you-in-the-graveyard

 

Upcoming Popes Of Chillitown tour dates:

MAY 27 – BOURNEMOUTH Cursus Festival

JUN 02 – NOTTINGHAM The Maze

JUN 09 – CHEPSTOW Balter Festival

AUG 04 – BLACKPOOL Rebellion Festival

AUG 09 – NEWCASTLE Trillians*

AUG 10 – GLASGOW Audio*

AUG 11 – LONDON Underworld*

AUG 12 – WINCHESTER Boomtown Fair

*w/ Fishbone

http://www.popesofchillitown.com/   https://www.facebook.com/PopesOfChillitown    https://twitter.com/popesofctown

Pete RingMaster 18/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Voice Of Addiction – The Lost Art of Empathy

This started out as a piece on one track from their new album, an introduction for us sent by Voice Of Addiction which was so persuasive the whole album had to instead be the focus of attention. A multi-flavoured punk rock roar from the Chicago based band, The Lost Art of Empathy is one rousing confrontation which has the body bouncing and spirit leaping with its boisterous escapades from start to finish.

Becoming a potent part of the Chicago punk scene through their explosive live shows, Voice Of Addiction have been stirring up ears and venues since 2004, with a handful of releases and a host of compilation appearances marking their way. At their centre is vocalist/bassist Ian “JohnnyX “ Tomele joined upon the latest Voice Of Addiction stomp by drummer Dennis Tynan, guitarist/backing vocalist Jake Smith, and backing vocalist Luke Ostojic. Listening to the treat that is The Lost Art of Empathy, it seems impossible that the band is not a more widely recognised proposition within the global punk scene; a prospect their new album just might trigger.

With politically and socially challenging lyrics matched by a sound which bites however it comes across it’s twelve tracks, The Lost Art of Empathy opens up with that first song heard here. Rustbelt instantly coaxes ears with a spicy hook which is soon joined by a grouchy bassline and jabbing beats. Together they surge at the senses, developing an infectious urgency as Tomele’s vocals with equally potent backing swiftly capture the imagination. In no time the romp is igniting ears and appetite, its drive towards one irresistible chorus just as manipulative as everything from hardcore, pop and classic punk seems to get involved.

The following Dead By Dawn has a rawer manner in tone and touch but is equally as contagious with athletic beats and the grumbling bass shaping the assault from within which a collage of vocals and the clang of guitar entice. Smith spins a web of sonic endeavour as unpredictable as his riffs are rabid before Unity brings its own belligerent defiance to the party. Tomele’s bass again whips up the appetite, its magnetic prowess matched by another potent mix of vocals across the band.

Petty Schemes swaggers in next with a knowing mischief before bounding into a snarling and keenly eventful melodic punk blaze while the soulful Corporate Pariah evolves into a ska punk canter before which feet and hips are leaping as thoughts are provoked by the tracks incisive words. Both songs hit the spot, the second especially persuasive before Lockwood uncages its sonic spiral and subsequent punk contagion to eclipse both. Across the album bands such as NOFX, Bad Religion, and Angelic Upstarts come to mind, this track especially hinting but there is no denying that Voice Of Addiction embrace all into their own individual furor.

The street punk fuelled I Can’t Breathe invitingly brawls with the listener next, the band merging US and seventies UK punk for its tenacious attack and triumph; a success matched by the visceral punk holler of Everything Must Go. It too is a collusion of styles within the punk banner; alternative and math rock flirting with hardcore tendencies to enthral and arouse.

Through the caustic yet melodically hued tear up of Ad Nauseum and the equally uncompromising and enticing Eviction Notice, the album continues to grip attention even if the songs do not hit the same level as those before them; a plateau Alcorn Queen definitely flirts with straight after with its Mars Volta meets Converge like adventure and animosity. The track is superb, stealing best track honours at the death though there is still time for the acoustic brilliance of Are We Even Human Anymore to shine with Tomele vocally luring ears like moths to a flame.

The Lost Art of Empathy is a moment in time not to be missed; indeed all punks should make it their cause to share its compelling sound as too the presence of Voice Of Addiction. America is catching on, now it is our turn around the world.

The Lost Art of Empathy is available now @ https://voiceofaddiction.bandcamp.com/album/the-lost-art-of-empathy-2

https://voiceofaddiction.com/    https://www.facebook.com/voarockers/    https://twitter.com/VoArockers

Pete RingMaster 09/08/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Imperial Leisure – Animal

It might not be the summer quite yet but giving its playlist an irresistible first addition is the new single from UK ska punks Imperial Leisure. To be fair, Animal is an incitement for any time of the year, any random two and a half minutes of any day. It is a circus of sound and fun, a carnival of 2-tone inspired ska, pop punk, and hip hop nurtured rock ‘n’ roll; together a distinctive mix creating the individual sound at joyful play within the band’s new gem.

Born out of school friendships, Imperial Leisure has blossomed in sound and reputation across three well-received albums; the last, Lifestyle Brand in 2015 drawing potent acclaim its way. Their live presence has equally honed the band’s music and craft, the band sharing stages with the likes of Ugly Duckling, Roots Manuva, UB40, Less Than Jake, Young Blood Brass Band, The King Blues, Sonic Boom Six and a great many more along the way as well as going down a storm at numerous festivals such as Glastonbury (twice!), The Secret Garden Party and Boomtown Fair. Each year has seen the sextet and its additional brass section rise higher on the British musical landscape; 2017 sure to be another mighty nudge on the biggest spotlights if Animal is anything to go by.

As guitars clip ears, brass flames flicker with flirtatious intent, their combined tempting soon colluding with the passion stoking pulse of the bass as well as the lick of ska seeded riffs and the intoxicating smooch of Hammond-esque keys. With the infectiously captivating vocals of Denis Smith stirring things up even more, the song bounds along with an irresistible swing and mischievous swagger. It is a wonderfully busy affair but every element and seductive flame a clean spice for a swiftly greedy appetite to devour in the whole insightful and instinctively catchy encounter.

It seems like ska and ska punk has the potential of having another heyday such the number of great bands around and emerging with Imperial Leisure leading the way, though all will have to go some to rival the sheer pleasure of Animal.

Animal is out now for downloading and streaming on all platforms with a vinyl release on April 1st.

https://www.facebook.com/imperialleisure

Pete RingMaster 17/03/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Union Jack – Supersonic

uxj_RingMasterReview

It has been twenty years since Paris hailing Union Jack first stomped around with their anger fuelled, ska infested punk ‘n’ roll, a celebration marked by the release of a brand new slab of infectious aggression. Supersonic is the trio’s seventh full-length, a stonking riot driven by the band’s familiar yet individual sound which simply hits the spot dead centre.

Across six albums and a host of EPs, Union Jack have honed their sound into one intrusively virulent proposal, a strain of punk rock with catchiness as potent as its irritability at the world. Live it has ignited hordes of fans, earning the band a big reputation across their homeland, into Europe, and Canada while sharing stages with the likes of The Damned, DOA, UK Subs, Leftöver Crack, Swingin Utters, Subhumans, The Aggrolites, The Movement, Inner Terrestrials and many more. Even so, they still may be an unknown quality to a great many, something that Supersonic should amend.

Recorded at Sofa Studio with RomTomCat, mixed and mastered by Mike Major ( At the Drive-in, Sparta, Coheed And Cambria, Gone is Gone), and with additional contributions on certain songs by Thomas Birnbacher (upright bass/organ), Phillipe Cattafesta (piano/organ), and Joe Robinne (organ), Supersonic grabs ears from its first breath. Cynical Sound Club starts things stomping, a brief introduction urgently loaded with wicked hooks and punchy rhythms as the band gathers all its wiles ready for next up Oh Boogie. The second track bounces around with attitude and aggressive energy tempered by the warm touch of an organ. The mischievous bassline is irresistible, riffs spice for the ears while the twin vocal attack of guitarist Tom Marchal and bassist/pianist Rude Ben are intrusive ringleaders in the magnificent raw and wild melody hooked romp.

Wordaholic has an even rawer air to its character and presence, Antoine Sirven Gabiache’s swinging beats leading the way as vocals and grooves leave lingering imprints on the senses and psyche. Like a mix of  Swingin’ Utters and Faintest Idea, the song brawls and flirts with the listener, showing recognisable essences while uncaging its own antagonistic delights before Blackout unveils choppy riffs and slapping beats as again the excellent unity between the band’s contrasting vocals bring their own magnetic clamour to the catchy ire pumped mix. Both tracks use the body like a puppeteer, resistance to their swinging rhythms and wicked hooks pointless though each is over shadowed a touch by the punk rock roar of Boomerang. Stalking ears with a predacious bassline, enslaving them with the tangiest hooks as vocals entangle participation in their physical and emotional affray, the track is glorious; a Billy Talent like spicing added pleasure.

art_RingMasterReviewNext up Purple Pride offers a melodic core not too far removed from its predecessor’s and indeed the track lacks the same incendiary spark but still has pleasure and appetite greedy with its raw punk ‘n’ roll belligerence while the bubbly but sonically raw assault of Human Zoo straight, also just missing out on the heights of earlier songs, is still nothing less than fiercely enjoyable with its unpredictable nuances and twists.

Bitter Taste shows a calmer nature as keys and melodies swing with a summery energy though still Union Jack drive it with an instinctive aggression which commands attention. Another song which easily has feet and hips in tandem and the spirit railing against the world; it is one fun and impressive warm up for the album’s best track. Don’t Look Back swiftly steals favourite spot, laying the seeds with its psychobilly nurtured bass slaps and sealing the deal with its Tiger Army like groove. From there the band’s punk heart drives the thrills; ska licks and senses rapping beats as well as elements reminding of bands like The Vox Dolomites and The Peacocks treats in the track’s heady swing.

Through the raucously catchy skirmish of Summer Waves, a song with a Buzzcocks like hook to lick lips over, and the ska infested rock ‘n’ roll of The Globe, the captivating aural roughhousing only sparks new waves of pleasure. The underlying variety in the album’s sound is also further highlighted though You and I returns to the more expected Union Jack musical ruckus with no complaints offered. It still springs a smart web of melodies and hooks though to stand apart with a Biting Elbows like rock/punk invention adding extra spice to its scrap.

It is an essence which also infests the excellent Bones, a coincidental similarity to the just mentioned Russian band no bad thing as the song twists and turns with quarrelsome anthemic chest beating before slipping away for Hate To Say Goodbye to close things off, the slither of music a reprise to that first welcome by Supersonic.

The album is a real joy deserving the attention of all those with an appetite for ska punk and punk rock in any guise.

Supersonic is released February 1st on Beer Records in collaboration with Guerilla Asso, Old Town Bicyclette, and Riot Ska Records for the UK, and through https://unionjack.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/badska/

Pete RingMaster 01/02/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Hostiles – Last Call

The Hostiles Promo Shot_RingMasterReview

Giving the most glorious workout to swinging hips and inexhaustible feet, as well as instinctive pleasure, Scottish Ska-punks The Hostiles recently released new album Last Call. It offers thirteen tracks of melody thick, brass clad, and feverishly delivered punk ‘n’ roll as raw and snarling as they are inescapably irresistible.

Formed in 2001, The Hostiles began with brothers Josh (guitar/vocals), and Chris Barron (bass/vocals). Growing up in the US, the pair was seduced by the sounds of west coast ska and the likes of Reel Big Fish, NOFX, and No Doubt. In their teens, the pair moved to Scotland, soon discovering the rawer energy and sounds of bands such as Capdown, Lightyear, and King Prawn. Linking up with Callum Douglas (drums) and Steve Bruce (trombone), The Hostiles was soon rousing the local live scene with in time Joe Stainke (trombone) completing the current line-up. Quickly renowned for their energetic live performances, the band’s reputation swiftly grew and spread, helped in turn by the release of debut album Always Looking Forward in 2009. Proceeding to share stages with bands such as Reel Big Fish, Less Than Jake, Zebrahead, The Mad Caddies, Strike Anywhere, and many more, The Hostiles followed up their attention luring first album with the Late Nights… And Early Hours EP in 2012 and the single/video For A Good Time Call 07946058526 two years later.

Now it is Last Call drawing attention and from its first minute arousing body and spirit. From the opening intro, the album leaps upon the listener with opener Ed Knows. An attitude laden bassline stalks the initial vocal draw, both leading into a fiery lure of guitar and rapier like swings from Douglas. Quickly as the trombones share their melodic flames, the track is a contagious blaze of infectious sound with a funk infused swing and punk ingrained fuel to its roar. There is little time before the listener is adding their full contribution in voice and movement, a success matched in the following Inconsiderate. A lighter stomp of a song with Hammond flavoured keys courting its instantly open catchiness, it carries a familiar air which only adds to its thrilling appeal.

The Hostiles Cover Artwork_RingMasterReviewThe band’s inspirations are never far from the surface at times, the second song evidence but spices used to shape songs which undoubtedly have The Hostiles character, as shown again in the prowling You Liar. Swaggering alone with mischief in its creative glands, the song is confrontational but an epidemic  of big hooks and intimidating attitude, and quite superb. It reveals the great mix of pop honed and punk rock driven sounds which have sparked the band’s passions over time, all woven into another distinctive proposition before things calm a touch with I’ll Assume. It is just a touch too as the song soon shows its teeth and melodic prowess in a King Prawn like canter with exotic melodies and moody basslines entangling the ever potent vocals and swathes of mariachi hued trombone.

Both Night Out with its dirty tone and ridiculously infectious enterprise and its successor Wish You All The Best has body and soul leaping. The first is ska punk at its most creatively virulent and indeed addictive while the second is a boisterous romp shaped with smart hooks and persuasive melodies as well cast in imaginative drama coloured by rock guitar and theatrical brass.

The album continues to keep the listener on their toes with a broad grin on their face as the punk brawl of Spend My Life, the gentler sway of So, I Wonder, and the blazing exploits of Late Nights come, go, and leave ears and appetite aroused. The third of the trio especially adds another pinnacle to Last Call, all offering undeniable reasons to embrace The Hostiles adventure, with To Err Is Human providing another major highlight. The band’s latest single, it also has a hint of Mariachi El Bronx to its melodic and trombone nurtured side, a great flavour mixing with heavier punk rock attitude.

Released From Captivity uncages another addictive tempting, guitars and bass alone creating a web of hooks which snare body and heart with ease. Familiar essences come to the surface of the song but flavours simply used to shade its own individual devilment before the closing pair of encounters starting with Nobody Else. The song does not make the same impact as others within Last Call, yet has mutual participation with ease so does little wrong before the album’s title track brings it all to a cantankerous close. It is a ska infested hardcore brawl of a proposal, vocals a throated scraping challenge as brass bring a tonic to the imposingly grouchy touch of guitar and rhythms.

It makes for an unexpected and pleasing end to a release which sees ears and fingers itching to go again within seconds of its close. There are a few rather special ska flavoured punksters around right now and as proven by Last Call, The Hostiles stand by their side.

Last Call is out now on Bubble Tea Records @ http://thehostiles.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/thehostiles/   http://www.thehostiles.co.uk/

Pete RingMaster 05/08/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright