Hellrad – Things Never Change

FRONT COVER_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

The sound of US sludge metallers Hellrad is like toxic lava. It crawls over and consumes ears, blisters the senses, and devours all before it in an atmosphere of unbridled hostility. It also, with weighty persuasion and hellacious intensity, leaves the listener basking in a network of scorching, seductive grooves and intimidating rhythmic slavery, it all colluding for one fierce volcanic treat.

Hellrad began in the August of 2014; the Philadelphia quartet formed by guitarist Mike Hook (Eat The Turnbuckle, Bad Luck 13) and drummer Robert Lepor (Brian Candle). The pair swiftly enlisted bassist Herb Jowett (Javelina, Lick Golden Sky), and with an album’s worth of tracks emerging from their songwriting, completed the line-up with vocalist Dirty Dave Repenning (Off Duty Death, Warsaw). Their sound is as dirty as it is ugly, as angry as it is uncompromising, but aspects aligned to a violent creativity which emerges as wholly contagious. Recording Things Never Change at Permanent Hearing Damage Studios with Steve Roche, Hellrad have unleashed a proposal which is not quite a game changer but it is certainly an uncomfortable and uncompromising fresh breath to the sludge/stoner scene.

From the uncaging of its opener Street Zombies, the album reveals depths of sound and a cast of textures which are as much ravenously doomy as they are voraciously noise rock inspired, a blend perpetually brewing in a cauldron of sludge predation. The first track comes in as a warning siren, its portentous air sparking ears and imagination though their expectancy is soon engulfed in a lumbering and slowly brewing tempest of binding grooves and scything rhythms. It is a stalking rather than an onslaught, yet it has the intensity of a sonic tsunami smothering and stirring up everything in its path. The vocals of Repenning are just as rapaciously delivered, a squall of ire and emotion and as addictive as the roar growing around him. Lyrically little is given away by his raw delivery across the release but his psyche ripping presence is all about texture and emotion, and in that he, as the webbing of enterprise around him, is primal magnetism.

The following My Jihad’s Against My Mind keeps the impressive and intrusive start going, its rage and intent a much more urgent and volatile persecution of body and thoughts. Riffs and rhythms again create an unforgivingly caustic canvas for grooves and vocals to spread their almost rancorous bait, and once more the victim is blissfully immersed in echoes of a cancerous world and destruction. The closing tonic of stoner bred lures of guitar, rather than a respite to the torturous adventure seeding them, is the flowing link into another merciless ravaging. Dope Fiend Jesus manages to be even more raw and filth clad than its predecessor but also more seductive with its flirtatious melodic enticing and passages of mellow aggression. It is deliciously fearsome stuff carrying the whiffs of classic stoner and sludge bands but quickly corrupting and twisting them into something rabidly distinct to Hellrad.

Homegrown Terrorist is one of those sonic and social statements you do not ignore. Everything from its opening sample to the insidious sprawl of Repenning’s tones and the barbarous presence of the bass to the violent swings of Lepor, create an unshakeable trespass physically and emotionally. Its brutish incitement is only enhanced by the venomous sonic vines unleashed by Hook, their virulent enticement, rather than a temper to the existing savagery, an incitement to more threat. It is a template just as addictive in the hard-line predatory saunter of Fucked Up, another unrushed violation which waits until it is ready before unleashing a scourge of sizzling sonic enterprise and poisonous intent bred in an exacting embrace of intense rock ‘n’ roll.

The rhythmic nature of 15 Years and Counting is at times almost meditative, certainly hypnotic though there is no peace or calm to be found in the ruinous landscape of the song. The infectious and anthemic bait of Lepor is only reinforced by the carnivorous tones of Jowett’s strings, both forging the irresistible dark spine within the tightly entwined mix of melodic enticing and inhospitable noise pollution. The track enthrals and thrills before making way for the groove fest of Smoke More Crack. The salacious slab of rabid, dirt spawned rock ‘n’ roll is the final confirmation of the immense and addiction forging properties of band, album, and their severe concoction of sound.

Things Never Change is a punishing treat and Hellrad the nastiest, most vicious exponents of aural castigation, and we for one cannot get enough.

Things Never Change is available now digitally and on CD @ http://hellrad1.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/Hellradphiladelphia666 

RingMaster 24/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

Southern Badass – Raised In Blood

Raised In Blood cover_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

Over two years ago, French rock band Southern Badass impressed with debut album Born In Mud, a warts and all release revealing a rich sound and potential which lit ears and a keen anticipation for the band’s evolution. Now it returns with second full-length Raised In Blood, a dirtier, grittier proposal infusing an even broader array of styles and flavours to its core southern rock/stoner bred sound with the same pleasing success.

Southern Badass is the solo project of Perpignan hailing multi-instrumentalist Arno Bechet, who seemingly draws on the likes of Black Label Society, Down, Black Sabbath, and Corrosion Of Conformity amongst many for his blend of heavy metal, stoner, sludge, and southern rock. Debut album Born In Mud certainly awoke potent attention with is release in 2013, a focus sure to replicated and surpassed by the tighter, more mature and fiery Raised In Blood. Again it is a proposition unafraid to be raw whilst embracing any small issues it may carry, but is openly a sparkling step forward from its accomplished predecessor.

The album opens with its title track, Raised in Blood quickly spilling a mist of sonic incitement led by bulging rhythms and abrasive riffs. Grooves are never retired in the music of Bechet, and straight away a juicy one is encircling and enticing ears before the song settles into a thick and steady stride. The vocals are as raw and at times as strained as on the first album, sometimes pushing their limits too much and in other moments providing the perfect roar to the brewing intensity and persuasion of sound. Fair to say, Bechet may not be the best and most natural vocalist but his musicianship is a gripping affair, more grooves and wiry riffs in the song potent proof alone.

The enjoyable swaggering start to the album continues with Burn into Eternity as resonating rhythms and electronic beats provide the spark to flames of guitar and vocal expression, Bechet finding a stronger more consistent delivery on the quickly persuasive encounter. The track has an earthy dark groove as its temptress, its thick lure embracing the more volatile and imaginative elements of the song and only stepping back for a low key and captivating melodic passage just after midway. Ending on a pungent blaze of a finale, the track is followed by the sharp southern rock tang of When I’m Dead. A mix of heavy and hard rock, it begins the strong variety of sound also emerging across the album, though it still has that inbred stoner core to its strong stroll.

Both Under the Red Sun and Last One Standing keep things interesting and satisfying, the first of the two slowly growing from a shadow rich reflective croon of Guns N’ Roses coloured, blues kissed rock into a full and impassioned rock ‘n’ roll bellow. It still holds a reserved gait for the main though, the guitar craft and enterprise of Bechet again the attention grabber before its successor gets down and dirty with aggressive riffs and grouchy vocals. It too holds court on ears; grooves and rhythms especially dominate in the pleasing engagement, though both songs are outshone by the sultry tempting of La Marche des Morts. French sung, the song has the atmospheric heat of a Morricone composed landscape and the muscular threat of a Mastodon bred proposal, and is thoroughly riveting.

As good as the first half of the album is, from this excellent track on Raised In Blood seems to hit another level. House of the Swolen Goat is next and with Black Tusk like grooves and a new direction in vocals within a smouldering sonic glow, instantly stands above earlier songs, even its impressive predecessor. A rich and heated tapestry of rock tenacity, the track makes way for the dark country enticing of Down by the River. There is a haunting air to its dark shimmer and an incendiary impact to its subsequent volcanic expulsions of guitar and vocals, the song shadowed wrapped balladry to get greedy over.

   The Lesson is just as thrilling; its opening rhythmic bait and cantankerous bass moan anthemic might escalated by the driving charge of riffs which quickly bring feisty energy and magnetism to the excellent encounter. The track eventually spreads into a more controlled and expansively laid southern tinged rock ‘n’ roll, its potency and lure evolving rather than diminishing as Bechet lets his guitar craft also run a creative riot over ears and appetite.

Completed by Sphere of Io, a song which makes a messy start but turns into another sinew driven rampancy of heavy riffery and grooved slavery, Raised In Blood is another very enjoyable and accomplished slab of ravenous rock ‘n’ roll from Southern Badass. It has issues and as mentioned has a second half which leaves the first in the shade but if looking for some honest and organic heavy rock/metal this is definitely well worth a good hard listen.

Raised In Blood is out now digitally and as a double disc vinyl @ https://southernbadass.bandcamp.com/album/raised-in-blood

https://www.facebook.com/official.southernbadass

RingMaster 19/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

Fight Amp – Constantly Off

Pic Freddie Ross

Pic Freddie Ross

Whether they call themselves Fight Amp or Fight Amputation, Philadelphia’s keg of noise rock ferocity have returned with a blistering roar of an album in the shape of Constantly Off. Imposing and at times bordering on carnivorous, the release is the band’s first new recordings in over three years and their heaviest most virulently cantankerous offering yet.

Once more the trio pour grunge tenacity, sludge oppressiveness, and punk predation into their creative vat for the album, twisting and honing it into a tempest of irresistible and rousing noise rock. Equally though Fight Amp has cultivated their most infectious and seductive melodic tempting too. It has resulted in songs which rhythmically stalk, sonically abrase, and melodically romance the senses whilst creating an infestation which as suggested earlier sees the band at a new plateau of invention and sound. Think early Melvins and Torche meets KEN mode with rigorous incitement from the likes of Nirvana, Black Flag, and Dope Body, then think of that being something original again, and you have the addictive might of the Steve Poponi (American Heritage, Ladder Devils) recorded Constantly Off.

Ex Everything sets things in contagious motion, the opener stepping forward in a breeze of portentously predacious sound with the guitar of Mike McGinnis creating sonic smog. A whisper of a relaxation follows before rugged bass and guitar riffs collude with punchy beats in casting a more intensive examination of ears. The vocals of McGinnis and bassist Jon DeHart, whilst being just as imposing, offer a more harmonic temper to the heavy weight of the song, simultaneously sculpting prowling grooves through their individual string craft as hostile as they are magnetic. It is a beast of an encounter, a flirtatious predator which shares its traits with the following Survival Is Strange.

CO_COVER_WEB_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review The second song is a much more lively and volatile proposal from its first breath. The guitar spins a web of scathing riffs and enticing grooves around vocals which again come with an infectious swing and raw attitude. The contagious essence of the song is emulated just as resourcefully, amidst the resonating lures of bass, in the swinging sticks of drummer Dan Smith too. The encounter is noise addiction for ears and appetite matched quickly after by Leveling In A Dream. Its initial bluesy coaxing is liquor to the senses, a minute plus of suggestive toxicity which eventually spawns a rhythmic and vocal stroll of forthright attitude. Subsequently a reserved but antagonistic wind of sound with rhythmic punches fill ears, the closing minute of the track a bracing bellow which still never catches fire but smoulders perfectly for potent success.

Smith with his rhythmic and rapacious enterprise sets You Don’t Wanna Live Forever rolling next, his jabs increasing in pace and virulence until guitar and bass cannot hold back any longer and jump in with dirty riffs and boozy grooves, which are matched in turn by the raw and catchy variety of the vocals. Agitation and discord add to the captivating revelry, the song a perpetual eruption of off kilter tenacity and bouncing energy, not forgetting ingenuity.

Contrasting the leaping persuasion of its predecessor, I Perceive Reptoids employs another threatening prowl in its proposal. It comes with a post punk shadowing, a solemn toning which continues to cloud the corrosive expulsions of vocal and sonic ire aligned to another riveting and intrusive rhythmic enticement. Once more the song is an incitement bred from colluding contrasts and opposing textures, and again ears and imagination are twisted into subservience.

Final track Happy Joyful Life brings a last tempest to devour greedily. The bass of DeHart is almost bestial in its voice and addictively savage basslines, the beats of Smith rapier like, whilst McGinnis’ guitar breeds a maelstrom of senses tearing hooks and toxic grooves. Together it is a tempestuous and ridiculously infectious affair driven by scowling vocals and just outstanding.

The track makes an absorbing end to an incendiary release on ears and emotions, Constantly Off brewing its own terrain of noise rock which explores all the essences making up its DNA with such imagination that it ensures its appeal will go far beyond one or two specific genres. Quite simply Fight Amp creates irresistible noisy rock ‘n’ roll and in their new offering one of the real treats of 2015.

Constantly Off is available now via Brutal Panda Records digitally and on vinyl @ http://www.brutalpandarecords.com/products/fight-amp-constantly-off-12 or https://fightamp.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/FightAmp   http://www.fightamp.com/

RingMaster 10/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

Nightslug – Loathe

Promo_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

If there is any glimmer of hope for humanity and the world as its falls further into decay, it is an escape you will not find in the sound and new album of German band Nightslug. The seven track encounter is a crushing swamp of sound and ill-will, a soundtrack for and after the apocalypse which thickly and ravenously consumes any hint of light. It is ugly, increasingly voracious, and viciously suffocating but also irrepressibly compelling.

Formed late 2011 in Düsseldorf, Nightslug was bred in and emerged from the country’s hardcore-punk scene. As their demo 12” that first year and debut album Dismal Fucker in 2012 revealed, the band’s sound immersed that hardcore and punk breeding into a tsunami of sludge seeded hostility and nihilistic expression. Both releases startled and spawned potent attention for themselves and the band, but now their brand new album Loathe takes everything to a new grotesque plateau with, easy to suspect, a similar growth in awareness and success soon following.

Nightslug Loathe cover _Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review     From the initial sonic violation of Vile Pigs, band and release is a hellacious resonance in ears and spiteful provocation for the imagination and emotions. The opener swiftly welcomes a savage bassline and telling vocal samples as its climate becomes a piercing and even more inhospitable prospect. Dirty doom spawned riffs add to the trespass almost as instantly as the insidious tones of the vocals, everything united in a corrosive smog of noise and intent. As with many destructive proposals, there is an underlying tempting and swagger leading to contagion, the song’s coming through that increasingly infernal bass bait matched in rancor by riffs and a riveting repetitious essence permeating all aspects.

The song’s departing sonic abuse transforms into the sonically violent start of the album’s title track. It is also the spark to a rage of intensively striding riffs and scything rhythms as a filthy rock ‘n’ roll swing cores the tempest of physical and emotional abuse. The storm though is soon turned into an inferno of noise and indeed loathing through the maelstrom of guitar and the ravenously merciless vocals before it too seeps into its successor, The Thrill Is Gone: Repulsion. There is nothing but hatred and bad blood running through the lumbering vitriol posing as a song, predatory riffs and rhythms alongside contaminated grooves and effect despoiled vocals colluding to get under the skin and devour the listener from within. As much as it is sludge, hardcore, and sheer aural cancer, that deep rooted infection is working away with noise rock and industrial tempting too and never has antipathy and the end of personal days been so seductive.

The excellent Under a Bane is a short unbridled savaging churning up body and feelings with every rancorous note and barbarously spewed syllable whilst Disease straight after, as its name suggests, is a lingering and inescapable sonic and emotional malady slowly working away at the senses with its insatiable distemper. Ears and thoughts simply get lost in its immersive depths and suffocating claws, its sludge crawl clad in an esuriently scarring sound for a gradual and cumulative persuasion.

Animalistic is the best way to describe the brilliant alchemy of Pure, its tribal beats undiluted temptation crawled over by wretchedly bred vocals and a seesaw of sonic enticing. As the gorgeous assault enslaves you can almost feel reality and the surrounding world crumbling into dust, before closing song Tainted Throne drags the listener into its own realm of carnal tones and hideous sonic landscapes lorded over by the most depraved sounds and creative imaginations.

The final song epitomises the nasty and beauteous decay of Loathe, an album it has to be said that simply enthrals and thrills from start to finish. It is obviously not going to ignite a greedy appetite and excitement in everyone but as life and humanity putrefies in our hands, Nightslug present one delicious soundtrack.

Loathe is out now via Lost Pilgrims Records (FR), Dry Cough Records (UK), and Broken Limbs Recordings (USA) and digitally @ http://nightslug.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/nightslug   http://lostpilgrimsrecords.limitedrun.com/products/551006-nightslug-loathe

RingMaster 10/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

Unmothered – U M B R A

Unmothered_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

U M B R A is a predator soaked in doom and sludge but equally draped with essences of black metal, noise, stoner rock, and most likely any other voracious flavour you can imagine. It is also one of the most primal and inventively addictive things heard so far in 2015. The new carnivorous proposition from US band Unmothered, the three track EP proposition brawls through ears, violates the senses, and scars the psyche from start to finish, all the time igniting the passions with its fierce turbulence. There is no escape once it takes hold but no desire to flee its uncompromising trespass either.

Starting their raucous prowl of the senses in 2010, the Austin hailing Unmothered unleashed their self-titled debut EP vinyl in 2012 to acclaiming responses across the underground scene. It brought seven atmospherically ravenous and physically cavernous landscapes to feast on the senses, laying the seeds for the even darker and in many ways more intimate intrusions to be found within the insidious temptation of U M B R A.

cover_ Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review    As its predecessor, the EP is wrapped in the artwork of UK artist Andrew Sloan, its dark toning and organic imagery a first glimpse of the creative tapestry and sonic exploration set to seduce ears and beyond. Opener Magnetar rubs ears with a lone riff to begin within but swiftly revolves and broadens into a predatory canter of imposing rhythms from drummer Matt Moulis and dark throaty bait courtesy of Joseph Barnes’ bass, both entwined in the just as gripping sonic tenacity of guitarist Matt Walker. Alone each sculpts pure drama but together they make aural pestilence whilst additionally conjuring a groove which no matter where it leads or what it twists itself into, is an unrelenting seducing within the carnal ambience and textures around it. The pestilential tones of Walker’s vocals crawl into the psyche too as they hitch a ride on the increasingly contagious grooving and tsunami like hostility swinging its way to the same destination.

If the swagger of the first song is incendiary and contagious, it is light weight compared to that of Scarp and before it Huntress. The second song scythes through ears on a sonic lure before thickening its bait within a musty swamp of noise. It is only building towards the point of greater addictive enterprise though, another flaming acidic groove with a waspish nature flirting within ears as guitars and drums spin a magnetic enslaving web. Equipped with gnarly bass tones which simply inflame the senses, the song offers whispers of bands like Ministry and Morkobot, though equally you would suggest Unsane or a Today is the Day, as many do, as a hint to the ravaging being enjoyed. The track is irresistible, a disembowelling of the senses with riveting rewards in return but quickly over shadowed by the final song.

Scarp from its first breath is a torrent of sonic nagging, Walker’s guitar a primal bee in the psyche which is rapidly matched in primeval temptation by the roguish swipes of Moulis and the throaty dissent of bass. A rhythmic and sonic virulence does not let up even as the raw tones of Walker spill their new narrative of aggression and his guitar skirts over the Killing Joke like rhythmic spine with its caustic and corrosive enterprise. A post rock like calm embraces ears midway through to wrong-foot and bewitch, the drums continuing to roll out a mouth-watering and unrelenting niggle of anthemic beats throughout. It is a mesmeric and meditative passage yet in its air, lurking in the shadows there is an intimidation and menace which bides its time before exploding in one hellacious climax of one outstanding incitement.

The track is a brilliant; a gripping end to a glorious slab of noise fuelled contagion posing as U M B R A. Letting greed have its say there is no doubting that the EP is over too soon but with the adage ‘leave them wanting more’ surely in its thoughts, U M B R A and Unmothered have opened up a vat of anticipation for something bigger and you suspect even more threateningly bolder.

U M B R A is available from May 26th via Crowquill Records. For details see http://crowquillrecords.limitedrun.com/artists/unmothered

http://unmothered.com/   https://www.facebook.com/Unmothered

RingMaster 26/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

Deathkings/Rozamov – Split

Rozamov Split

On May 16th and 17th US bands Rozamov and Deathkings respectively will be playing The Observatory in Santa Ana as part of the three day Psycho California fest which starts on the 15th. The third year of the event will again see over fifty bands from around the world bringing a wealth of genres from doom and sludge to post rock, hardcore to black metal. To mark their participation Deathkings and Rozamov have united to unleash a split 7” via Midnite Collective, bearing a new and exclusive track from each. It adds up to around fifteen minutes of sludge bred enjoyment with the imaginative contagion to seduce and primal ferocity to savage.

Deathkings

Deathkings

The first track is from LA hailing Deathkings, a quartet fusing sludge and doom with experimental voracity. The band consists of guitarist Daryl Hernandez and bassist/vocalist Nicolas Rocha, a pair who had already played together in a previous band before forming Deathkings, as well as drummer Sean Spindler and guitarist Mark Lüntzel, who joined the band after the release of the band’s three-track EP Destroyer. The quartet is currently getting to grips with the creation of their second release, tentatively titled All That Is Beautiful, and with their contribution to this endeavour in the mighty shape of Solomon, it is destined to be a highly anticipate encounter.

Solomon opens on a hypnotic and instantly enthralling stroll of resonating, deeply impacting rhythms skirted by equally predatory strands of guitar and one delicious bass tone. It is a gripping anthemic baiting over which the gruff growling of Rocha grumbles and roars. A fresh gear is then subsequently found, the track prowling with greater relish and urgency whilst dispensing thick and incendiary sludgy enterprise on the way to becoming an evolving cauldron of sinister monotone vocals, melodic toxicity, and doom soaked intensity. It proceeds to haunt the psyche and voraciously devour the senses, never remaining in one strain of confrontation for long but continuously igniting the imagination with its darkly immersive landscape. The track is inescapably compelling, an unrelenting mouth-watering incitement quickly matched by its companion on the release.

Rozamov springs from Boston and infuse their sludge invention with a more hardcore bred ferociousness as well as, like Deathkings, potent atmospheric persuasions. The trio of

rozamov

rozamov

guitarist/vocalist Matthew Iocavelli, bassist/vocalist Tom Cornio, and drummer William Hendrix, have frequently drawn references to the likes of Neurosis, Yob and Grief through their sound, live presence, and a pair of previous EP’s. Now in the depths of writing their first album, the Massachusetts band offer Ghost Divine to the split’s fury of sound, and from a sonic mist swiftly turns into a maelstrom like intensive examination of the senses fuelled by a bracing turbulence. Vocals quickly vent with a hardcore fury, a raging emulated by the caustic tempest of sound consuming ears simultaneously. At times an unbridled hurricane and in others a lumbering beast of doom lined discontent straddled by acidic flames of guitar rapacity, the track is a bewitching and fearsome rancor but unafraid to reveal unpredictable and engrossing flights of imagination, even if in brief and fleeting moments within its ravenous assault.

Both tracks leaves senses bruised, ears hungrier, and anticipation for their next releases sparked, as well as wishing we were there at both their upcoming performances.

The Deathkings/Rozamov – Split is available now via Midnite Collective @ https://midniteclv.bandcamp.com/album/deathkings-rozamov-split and http://midniteclv.storenvy.com/products/12489843-deathkings-rozamov-split-7

http://www.facebook.com/DeathkingsMusic   https://www.facebook.com/Rozamov

RingMaster 13/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

Hogslayer – Defacer

hogslayer-promo-02-b

photo Mei Lewis of Mission Photographic

 

As primal and consuming as any physical grudge the earth expels, the sound of Welsh fury Hogslayer is an inescapable savaging but equally a predatory incitement which sparks only a greedy appetite for more. Certainly that is the success found in the band’s first album, and taken to new heights in their new and second full-length Defacer. The release is a brutal monolithic tide of sludge rich, tar thick sonic malevolence, a proposition as oppressively destructive as it is perversely invigorating and ultimately fiercely compelling.

The Cardiff quintet first emerged in 2012, rising from the ashes of Shaped By Fate and Zonderhoof. Instantly there was no mercy given by their crawling toxic blend of sludge, doom, and every rabid essence of noise to be found, a heavily persuasive confrontation evidenced by the band’s 2013 self-titled debut album. Now they have intensified every aspect of sound and emotional turbulence within their invention to create and unleash Defacer, as magnetic a violation as you are likely to meet this year.

The first trespass of senses and psyche comes with Slowhawk, a raw vocal rant from Lord Bastard the trigger to a tsunami of bestial bass predation and equally vicious guitar stalking, it all punctuated by the slow uncompromising swings of drummer Max Von Beek. The creeping groove of the assault is as immediate in its lure too, the primitive growls of bass cast by Grym Av Skugga and Damek Ômsk irresistible intimidation loaded with an instinctively seductive swagger. The guitar of Barron Drakk provides its own incendiary tempting to add to the mix, entwining the dark imposing incitement alongside with a mix of caustic riffs and piercingly spicy hooks. The track is an unrelenting mass of uncompromising contagion; raw rock ‘n’ roll at its hellacious best setting the album off to a mighty start.

11025783_788660491214134_3070821753561557583_n   The album’s following title track reveals an even more barbarous presence and intent from its first few breaths, riffs and grooves almost Neanderthal in tone yet quickly showing they are prepared to twist in infectious enterprise and sonic unpredictability too as they potently colour the almost hypnotic repetitious core of the song. Throat scarring vocals spill furiously from the front man, providing a potent abrasion from within the smothering web of sound and hostility around him. Once again an addictive essence is at large before the ruinous presence of the song makes way for the similarly intensive and vehement Wülfbaanger. Its body of central riffs and rhythmic prowling is not far removed from that of its predecessor, a comment which can be raised across the album as a minor niggle with some grooves and heavy riffery often showing a lack of distinction from others though it is usually compensated by the sonic invention and unpredictable adventure also revealed, if at times understated.

Bludgeon is as its name implies a heavy-duty and antagonistic confrontation of noise and energy as viscous and black hearted as it is groove catchy whilst next up Burn Them Out sets down another pinnacle to match the opening pair. It is sonically fairer than previous songs but still offering a syrupy toxicity through the senses lapping grooves. It is the hardcore essences though which rage within vocals and the twisted imagination of the guitars that gives something extra to take a great song to the plateau of major incitement. Rhythmically too there is a fresh impetus, an anthemic quality to Von Beek’s enterprise courting grooves and hooks which flirt back with fiery stoner-esque hues. The track is still as inhospitable as anything else upon Defacer but tapping into an open diversity which is not always as keen as elsewhere.

The truculent Warcries is as gladiatorial as you would imagine but within its argumentative brawl of sound and intent, Hogslayer explore an out of the blue and thrilling melodic detour which only adds to and emphasises the overall intensity and impact of the song. Once more bolder imagination and invention is freed to impressive results and without defusing the weight and force of sound around it.

Bastards Of Reality comes next, its doom fuelled carriage of malicious sound and emotion taking the listener into dark, suffocating, and cavernous depths where more striking and riveting strands of sonic endeavour lights up ears and imagination. For seven minutes the track excites as it roams and infests the senses, spilling sonic venom and grievous animosity musically and emotionally, before being emulated in length and impact by This Spiteful Cycle. The new song is simultaneously tortuous and deliciously hypnotic, though its addictive character allows no chance of an easy ride. A favourite element of the band’s sound is the entangled hostility and creativity of guitar and bass, both ripe with their volatile natures, and arguably they are at their most psychotic in the closing song driven on by ever merciless drum provocation. Probably the most testing listen on the album it is a richly satisfying final challenge, though not the last song as there is the hidden bonus of Mealworm for the patient to enjoy, an outstanding slab of psychotic sludge bred, senses corroding rock ‘n’ roll.

Hogslayer has risen to a new level and stature with Despiser, but with the potential for even bigger, fiercer things ahead you feel. The album is excellent but with room for its ideas to be taken further meaning pleasure is rich now but excitement for the future easily as potent.

Despiser is available now via Undergroove Records on CD @ http://undergroove.bigcartel.com/product/hogslayer-defacer-cd and digitally at most online stores.

http://www.hogslayer.co.uk/     https://www.facebook.com/hogslayerband

RingMaster 07/05/20145

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net