Arcade Messiah – III

john-bassett-promo_RingMasterReview

This past week saw Arcade Messiah unveil its third album in as many years, each a November treat instantly challenging thoughts on best of year nominations.  III is a mighty continuation of that trend, a release where imagination might not be rampant in its title but in its kaleidoscope of suggestive sound and inventive flavours, it simply ignites ears and thoughts.

Arcade Messiah is the solo project of Sligo based songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/producer John Bassett, the founder and driving force of the outstanding UK band KingBathmat. It is a true solo effort with every detail the imagination, creation, and work of Bassett, all apart from the art of III which sprung from the craft of Michael Kerbow. Arcade Messiah has persistently taken ears through a myriad of sonic and powerfully evocative landscapes, pushing the union of creator and listener’s imaginations to new heights. III unsurprisingly is no different to its predecessor, exploring a new depth in textures and invention which just lights up mind and spirit.

To simplify things, Bassett weaves his music from the merger of everything from post and stoner rock to doom, sludge, and metal doom. It is still a narrow description of his sound which defies labels yet openly embraces inspirations whilst turning them into something inescapably unique to Arcade Messiah. Like a melodic siren with the growl and intensity of a bear, his instrumental endeavours to date have fascinated and consumed ears and mind alike; III as mentioned does not deviate from that success. It is though, the heaviest, most compelling and exhilarating offering from the man yet. Across six tracks, the album is creatively ravenous, melodically seductive, and often emotionally irritable and quite bewitching.

It opens up with Revolver, a prowling slice of heavy metal with an air of Sabbath to it which is soon entangling ears in a net of melodic and sonic intrigue. Rhythms barge through the maze of sound, imposing on the senses with poise and aggression as guitars weave their web. The first surprise is the sudden expulsion of vocals from Bassett, they more a texture than an attention stealer but carrying a clarity as ripe and potent as the cauldron of sounds around them. Simultaneously confrontational and welcoming, the track continues to disturb and beguile like a dramatic carousel.

It is a glorious start swiftly backed by the bestial presence of Citadel, a lumbering slab of crawling doom which looms up over the senses, submerging them in its sludgy tar before veins of melodic enterprise and emotive grace wrap around body and imagination. Dark and dangerous, alluring and captivating, the song gets under the skin and into the psyche; its aural scenery an irresistible adventure to navigate and explore.

arcade-messiah-iii-album-cover_RingMasterReviewAt over ten minutes, Deliverance is an epic proposal which devours time with its craft and magnetism. From a gentle opening as warm as it is melancholic with guitars and keys entwining with earthbound celestial beauty, the piece brews a darker side. Striding rhythms are the first deceptive shadow, again a sure invitation with a portentous edge though their threat merely simmers for its first third. Eventually though there is no holding back the energy and intensity of the skirting shadows, their fiery eruption the spark to a lava flow of melody and carnivorous energy. It is impossible not to get lost in the depths and suggestiveness of the track, the imagination casting its pictures and tales as the track continues to ebb and flow in touch and creative fire, perpetually burning its presence into appetite and spirit while captivating with its variety of attack.

It is impossible to pick a best track, all providing unique aspects and characters to immerse in, but the song certainly makes a highly persuasive argument as too its successor Life Clock. Washing over the senses with its space rock like atmosphere and fertile layers courted by the dark lures of bass and beats, the track is another femme fatale resembling encounter luring ears onto its ravenous rhythmic rocks and predacious intensity which lay in wait as the track builds its apocalyptic climax.

Once consumed, the song makes way for the Hades like realm of Black Tree; another predatory piece which stalks and infests with a seductive prowess as powerful as its acrimonious side, both having their moments to make their case across the outstanding trespass. Of course this and every track will inspire a scenario and emotion unique to the individual, one of the many glorious aspects of the Arcade Messiah tapestries.

III closes with the relative calm and peace of Sanctuary, though it too has tempestuousness to its heart and touch which only fires up the senses and imagination as Bassett casts another canvas of melodic suggestion, sonic rabidity, and all that lies between.

III is glorious, a riveting slice of aural alchemy which should not surprise considering the strength and prowess of its creator and predecessors but does at every twist and turn. Time to take another look at those End Of Year lists folks.

III is out now on Stereohead Records @ https://arcademessiah.bandcamp.com

http://www.arcademessiah.com   http://www.kingbathmat.com   http://www.johnbassettmusic.com   https://www.facebook.com/arcademessiah/

Pete RingMaster 30/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Simpletone – Angels’ Share

the-simpletone-band-pic_RingMasterReview

There are some releases which just demand success. Whether they get it in the increasingly fickle attention of the modern music fan is never a given but Angels’ Share, the new album from British rockers The Simpletone, does all the right things to make that commanding statement.

There is little we can share about the 2010 formed band other than its line-up is made up of John Davison, Craig Seymour, Glenn Eastoe, and Tom Cahill, it hails from St Neots in Cambridgshire, and has previously released the albums, Rampenny in 2012 and Dark Matter two years later, both seemingly well-received propositions. A UK tour with New Model Army in 2014 has been one of many live highlights for the band built on their stirring fusion of heavy and melodic rock with grunge, stoner and numerous other essences. It is a mix of flavours making for a striking proposition and imaginative proposal in Angels’ Share and songs which just roar with anthemic majesty and fiery enterprise.

The first of the ten cuts gripping ears and an early appetite for the band’s invigorating rock ‘n’ roll is Outta Control. Instantly a spicy groove winds around ears, leaning in closer as tenacious rhythms and riffs join its opening bait. Effect coated vocals equally lures keen ears as the song swaggers along with steady but rapacious grooves and a suggestive melody. The restraint stopping the track from exploding as it hints it might throughout is an inspired move, the song teasing and almost taunting along its enterprise shaped body. The heavier throb of bass and flames of harmonies only add to the lure of the song with guitar craft similarly as magnetic.

The following Love Street (Modern Mystery) keeps the rich enticement going with its punk folk lined stroll, simple but potent riffs colluding with swinging beats as vocals paint a suggestive picture. Its catchiness is a swift persuasion rapidly backed by the boisterous antics of the guitars as the track carries on the great variety already showing in the band’s sound, diversity more than confirmed by their mighty new single Storm Chaser. At over eleven minutes it is an epic persuasion which serenades the senses with melodic and harmonic caresses initially before building a bolder energy amidst an addictive rhythmic prowess. Weaving strands of space and progressive rock among other textures into its ever evolving adventure, the song is a kaleidoscope of melody heavy rock drawing on an array of decades while creating its own fresh, individual, and ever changing landscape of imagination. Like a mix of Skyscraper (the nineties UK band), Life of Agony, and Voyager, the track barely feels like its length and relentlessly has the listener compelled.

angels-share-cover_RingMasterReviewThe fact that next up Black Box still manages to eclipse it slightly shows the quality of its own exceptional design. A spirit stoking beast from its first touch, the song canters with muscular tenacity and fiery invention bred to virulent proportions as its mix of hard and heavy rock consumes ears and imagination. The track is exceptional, as punk in many ways as it is feisty rock ‘n’ roll with a drama of character and craft that demands attention and involvement.

Fire in the Sky steps up next with a growl in its basslines and a contagious swing in its rhythms, guitars and vocals dancing within their addictive tempting as soulful blues lined grooves bring an incendiary heat to the proposal. Like a seventies inspired union of Therapy? and Reuben, to try and offer a comparison, the song forcibly hits the spot before making way for the slower stoner-esque prowl of Nehemiah, an incitement pulling sludgy textures into its increasingly exotic and suggestive theatre. It is seriously compelling stuff, another song blossoming through an array of twists and flavours as it grows in ears.

The melodic charm of Day by Day is a similarly riveting proposition, the graceful yet sinewy instrumental finding a place between XTC and Tool as it seduces the imagination, setting it up for electrified air and nature of As Above so Below. Courting ears with a rapaciously formidable core in its raw riffs and bold rhythmic, the track wraps it in a melodic spiciness and mellower harmonic seducing which echoes elements of bands like Bush, Alice In Chains, and Sick Puppies yet sounds little like any.

If we tell you that Easy Come lacks the same galvanic sparks of its predecessors do not mistake it for a weak link within Angels’ Share; the song a highly persuasive slice of rock ‘n’ roll with guitar craft which shines like a beacon as the bass uncages a funk inspired personality. The fact the track is outshone by others is down to their might, a strength revelled in again by album closer Hunters. Whether by coincidence or design, there is a Horslips feel to the song certainly early on, and of fellow Brits KingBathmat but as across the album, things are soon woven into an addiction of sound and creative hooks roaring The Simpletone.

It is a glorious end to one treat of a release which deserves all the praise and attention it should and surely will get. Angels’ Share is another rousing encounter to add to our lustful favourites of 2016 list and no keener a recommendation we can offer.

Angels’ Share is out now across most online stores and on iTunes @ https://itunes.apple.com/album/id1169473074?ls=1&app=itunes

http://www.thesimpletone.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thesimpletoneband/

Pete RingMaster 16/11/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Shit The Cow – The one with the devil

STC_RingMasterReview

The one with the devil is the fifth EP from “scrapyard rockers” Shit The Cow but our introduction to the Swedish quartet and boy are we kicking ourselves for that. The six track incitement is a furore of creative theatre and raw energy treating ears and imagination to an often ferocious and always compelling mix of alternative and hard rock with as forceful punk, stoner, and garage rock infusions.  Hindsight shows that it is a mix which has primarily fuelled the band’s previous exciting releases in their various characters of sound but is at a new pinnacle within this latest encounter.

From 2012 EP volume/cow, Stockholm based Shit The Cow has uncaged a sound which infests the imagination but as shown by our recent discovery of them, thanks to the band themselves, maybe not always awareness. Certainly subsequent EPs, Salt of the earth (2013), Rissna (2014), and 67p have drawn plaudits and a host of new fans but it might just be, with deserved luck, that it is The one with the devil which ignites real attention.

Produced by Ron Haven, The one with the devil swiftly grips ears and induces raw hunger with opener Warcow. At a few breaths over a minute in length, the song is a rampaging surge of infectious caustic punk pop; like a lustfully dirty blend of The Dickies and The Super Happy Fun Club, all fuzzy guitar and irresistible hooks driven by thumping rhythms. Vocalist/guitarist Peter Söderberg sits astride the surging drive of the track, his great vocals backed and surrounded by the guitar/bass enterprise of Daniel Kjellberg and Erik Rosenberg, the pair apparently sharing instruments across the EP. Short but ridiculously infectious, the song has ears and psyche enslaved in little time before the EP’s title track lays down its potent bait.

art_RingMasterReviewOne With The Devil has a slightly slower stride to its gait but a more imposing weight and tone as it as good as prowls the senses. A glorious hook within a superhero essence captures the imagination as swiftly as the magnetically firm beats of Robin Lindqvist court the instincts to rock ‘n’ roll. Like Eagles Of Death Metal meets Helldorado yet not, the song is pure rock alchemy, a primal solicitation of the passions snarling away with increasing potency

The following El Chupacabra has a similar template to its character, stalking ears as engaging vocals and imagination entangling grooves collude with nagging riffs and rapacious rhythms. Featuring the backing female vocal charm and beauty of someone apparently called Alex, the song is a tempestuous, almost volcanic fire of raw intensity and melodic seduction which tempts and insists on attention as repetitious beats and niggly riffs core the whole bewitching affair.

There is something familiar about next up The Villain, an essence we have not yet pinned down but only adds to the intrigue and enjoyment of the exciting encounter. Again a wealth of flavours and textures are woven into a song by Shit the Cow, those female vocals alongside Söderberg icing on another irresistible slice of multi-faceted rock ‘n’ roll.

The band whips up another punk infested gen with IGGY next, the track a stomping beast of insistent beats and antagonistic riffs aligned to a bass growl to drool over with band vocals which ignite the spirit and indeed the vocal chords. There is a Jello Biafra air to the song, more Lard than Dead Kennedys maybe but very tasty all the same though ultimately song and sound is little like anyone else’s.

The EP is closed by an alternative version of Warcow; a quite delicious and haunting seducing with Alex on vocals courted by a host of portentous sounds and melancholically enthralling keys. The song is quite wonderful, a stunning end to a riveting and exhilarating first listen, for us, to Shit The Cow, the source of a new musical lust we are sure we will not be alone in having.

The one with the devil is out now across most online stores and @ https://shitthecow.bandcamp.com/album/the-one-with-the-devil

http://www.shitthecow.com/   https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shitthecow/325694852733   https://twitter.com/shit_cow

Pete RingMaster 13/10/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

XII Boar – Beyond The Valley of The Triclops

zz6t_xiiboarband_1_RingMasterReview

Last year metallers XII Boar made a compelling statement that British heavyweight rock ‘n’ roll was in safe and eager hands with debut album Pitworthy. It was a slab of dirty, primal stomping announcing the arrival of the Aldershot hailing trio on the frontline of UK metal. Hindsight though, and the release of its successor, shows that the impressive encounter was just an appetiser for a bigger thunderous roar and charge of creative mischief, for Beyond The Valley of The Triclops.

Formed in 2010, XII Boar caught the attention of a great many with first release, the Split Tongue, Cloven Hoof EP. Unleashed in 2012, it thrust the band’s thumping invasive sound into broader attention to back up a growing live reputation. Since then, the threesome of guitarist/vocalist Tommy Hardrocks, bassist Adam Thomas, and drummer Dave Wilbraham have shared stages with the likes of Corrosion of Conformity, Crowbar, ASG, and Karma To Burn, made praise luring appearances at Bloodstock, Desert Fest, and Hard Rock Hell, and signed a film licensing deal with Troma Films editor Dylan Greenberg. In the mix was the release of the critically acclaimed Pitworthy, it all leading to the band’s finest moment to date, Beyond The Valley of The Triclops.

Recorded with producer Chris Fielding (Conan, Electric Wizard, Winterfylleth) at Skyhammer Studio, the new album sees the band’s Motorhead, Black Sabbath, High on Fire inspired blend of stoner, doom, blues, and southern metal find a new devil in its heart and revelry. There is a mischievous grin on its creative face, a fresh inventive debauchery which gives Beyond The Valley of The Triclops a diversity and adventure not heard in the already imaginative XII Boar sound before. The album opens with Prologue, a brief slice of rhythmic voodoo setting the feral landscape the album and first track proper, Beyond The Valley commands. From a delicious dirty bass groove with guitar flames in the air, the track strolls through ears with the infectious swing of winy grooves surrounding jabbing beats. The raw and grizzled tones of Hardrocks enjoyably growl, challenging as the track rouses ears and an already keen appetite for the band’s sound. It is an easy invitation for newcomers too, one already showing a new maturity and confidence in songwriting and sound whilst rousing the spirit in the individual XII Boar way.

zz6t_xiiboarbeyondthevalleyofthetriclops_1_RingMasterReviewThe Hustle leaps at the listener immediately its predecessor departs, fiery riffs and the sultry shimmer of harmonica coaxing attention as the song shows itself an old school meets stoner stomp with plenty of punk rock attitude and blues rock spicing. It is an epidemic of infectiousness as sturdy and intrusive as it is virulent and matched in success by the bluesy rock ‘n’ roll of Strange Kinda Lonesome. It too is a canter which whips up body and spirit, involving the listener with swift ease as Lemmy and co like influences make their presence known not for the first or last time in the XII Boar sound. There is a touch of Dr Feelgood to the song too, a dose of heavyweight R&B adding its flavouring even when the song explodes in a tirade of heavy rocking half way.

There is no time for exhaustion already resulting from listening to the album to recover as the outstanding El Mucho Grande flirts and roars on the senses straight after, the song a tapestry of twisting grooves and catchy hooks woven with fun and inventive relish as full of variety as the vocals.

A moment to catch breath is allowed as the narrator of the album is given thirty seconds to give his Welcome To Your Doom warning before Penetrator whips up its energies and grouchy aggression in a superb corruption of a track again openly wearing its Motorhead cape as it has body and vocal chords in league with its own in no time. There are no real surprises in a song which feels so good to throw body and soul into, that adventure given to the likes of the imposingly heavy Abyssal Lord with its spidery grooves and cantankerous nature and the country twanged Black and Blues to exploit. The first of the pair also seamlessly slips into some magnetic and sultry jazz funk shuffling while its successor is a smouldering fire of blues and country rock crooning given a weight and intensity which rumbles on the senses. Both tracks have an unpredictability and volatility which alone seduces attention and real enjoyment, an enterprise just as rampant within the predacious rock ‘n roll of Jupiter Aligns if not with the same strength of zeal.

Album highlights continue to arise as it nears its end, Beggars Roost one such potent proposal with its dark and imposing presence with the excellent Triclops concluding the release with a rhythmically gripping and sonically muggy stalking of the senses. The fact that neither track is arguably the strongest and most explosive things on the album shows the might and quality of Beyond The Valley of The Triclops as a whole.

You always hope to say that the latest release from a band is their finest moment yet and with XII Boar it has been a theme realised almost song by song as they seize UK heavyweight rock ‘n’ roll in their big salacious hands.

Beyond The Valley of The Triclops is out now @ http://xiiboar.bandcamp.com/

http://www.xiiboar.com/   https://www.facebook.com/xiiboar   https://twitter.com/xiiboar

Pete RingMaster 29/09/2016

Idlewar – Impulse

idlewar tour_RingMasterReview

Managing to make a strong and firmly enjoyable impression on the first listen and blossoming into an even more striking proposition thereon in is Impulse, the debut album from American rockers Idlewar. The trio from Orange County caught attention and plaudits with their first EP, Dig In last year; its sound and success though was just an appetiser for the rousing prowess of Impulse and its suspected zeal loaded critical and fan reception.

Consisting of vocalist/bassist James Blake, guitarist Rick Graham, and drummer Peter Pagonis, Idlewar have quickly shown a knack for creating boisterously infectious and creatively dramatic proposals bred on an expansive range of rock ‘n’ roll from hard and classic rock to stoner and even grungier essences. It is an ability certainly fuelling Impulse and its diverse collection of songs.

Mastered by Brian Lucey (Ghost ‘Meliora’, Black Keys ‘El Camino’, Arctic Monkeys ‘AM’) Impulse quickly grips attention and imagination with opener Stone in My Heel. The twangy riffs which touch ears first instantly have an endearing swagger to them, their invitation soon joined by the just as appetising groan and lure of Blake’s bass; both in turn courted by the swinging beats of Pagonis. Choppy riffs and sweaty grooves escape and entangle an already keen appetite for things as Blake’s gravelly roar of a voice adds a more classic rock hue to a song also twisting within the throes of noise, alternative, and darker strains of rock ‘n’ roll.

impulse-cover_RingMasterReview16The track is superb, the perfect introduction and quickly backed up by the stoner/blues sultriness of Soul. Like Stone Temple Pilots engaged in psych rock flavoured escapades, the song croons and prowls the senses; the grooves of Graham especially flavoursome before it all makes way for the lighter infectious stroll of Criminal. Again grooves and hooks create a web easy to get caught up in, the heavier rhythmic enterprise an additional cage keeping ears and enjoyment in close attendance.

All That I Got is a slow burner in comparison. Starting with a slow emotive cloud of melody and vocal which certainly intrigues but lacks the potency of earlier tracks, the track grows in heavy emotion and intensity, finding a richer presence though it never quite hooks personal tastes as firmly as the songs around it. The variety and range of songwriting it brings does add to the powerful character of the album, as too does Innocent with its rhythmic enterprise, Pagonis laying down a captivating bed of feisty and resourceful beats over which Blake’s bass snarls, and in turn the classic rock revelry of Glory. With a great line in R&B to its body, the track is another which really grows over listens.

Band and album are back in seriously engaging gear with the rhythmically carnivorous Apathy next, it a track predatory in riffs and spidery grooves as Blake leads with his potent tones. The bass is at its most bestial in tone on the album, an infectious threat cleverly tempered by the fiery craft of Graham. Providing a certain highlight of the album, it is eclipsed by another in the catchy hip swinging devilry of Damage. With hooks to incite bad habits and a growing blaze of stoner seeded roars, the song is the cause of addiction in four minutes of mouth-watering rock ‘n’ roll.

Impulse is completed by first of all Burn All This, another song which almost stalks the listener as rapacious rhythms align to sinister riffs with the strength of catchiness which shapes the whole of the album. Grungy yet lined with a great dark blues tone and moments as heavy as they are seductively mellow, the excellent encounter is followed and album closed by On Our Knees and its feverish rock ‘n’ roll. Incessant and rousing, it is a fine end to a great debut full-length from Idlewar. It has a raw edge with mixes well with the open craft of the band members and their lively imagination plus a suggestion that the band is still developing and has plenty more to creatively discover within themselves, something to eagerly look forward to whilst enjoying Impulse.

Impulse is released September 30th via PHD.

http://www.idlewar.com/   https://www.facebook.com/idlewartheband/   https://idlewar.bandcamp.com/releases   http://www.twitter.com/idlewar

Pete RingMaster 30/09/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Welcome Back Delta – Sucker

WBD_RingMasterReview

As commandingly infectious as it is resourcefully muscular, Sucker is one of those propositions which just demands attention. The second album from British rockers Welcome Back Delta, the album is a spicy brew of classic and blues rock with a stoner/grunge scent to its captivating aroma. It embraces familiar flavours and textures but in a creative devilment and character all of the Welcome Back Delta making.

Hailing from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, Welcome Back Delta emerged in 2011 and quickly made an impact on their local music scene. Since then they have toured the UK several times and supported the likes of Clutch, Nick Oliveri’s Death Acoustic Tour, And So I Watch You From Afar, Lionize, and Karma to Burn. 2014 saw the well-received release of debut album Shocker, a success sure to be eclipsed with style and strength by Sucker.

Band and album get straight down to business with opener Beast Mode where from an initial ear catching ear spun hook and a swiftly joining rally of beats attention is hooked, riveted as Clutch like grooves and great group vocals uncage their catchy and dirty exploits around the lead and enjoyable slightly grouchy tones of vocalist/guitarist Joe Kelly. With the brooding bassline of Phil Davies carrying its only steely nature to align with the potent lures of Rob Duncan’s grooves, the track is soon in command of ears and appetite with a rousing chorus to complete the persuasion.

The bluesy tendrils of the following Snake In The Grass keep the commanding start going, grooves a smouldering lure of classic and familiar blues infection luring the listener into another potent chorus of group vocals. Caged by the firm and magnetic rhythms of drummer Steve Roberts, the song strolls along with a swagger and melodic glint in an intoxicating combination sparking listener participation with ease before the heftier weight and growl of Thrones takes over. Again there is no lack of contagiousness to its boozy grooves and imposing presence as ears and imagination are ignited alike again.

cover_RingMasterReviewGood variety across Sucker is another potent attribute, the country blues drama of Arms Dealer, which features guest Damon T, providing a flavoursome turn in the album’s landscape while Dadgerous featuring Bison Steed wraps itself in a Kyuss meets Red Fang-esque roar. The track is outstanding, a virulent trespass of the senses which ignites the spirit and energies of those it touches.

Jeremy’s Iron rumbles and grumbles next, its heavy riffs and cracking rhythms colluding with more of the smouldering grooves and instinctive catchiness Welcome Back Delta conjures at will while The Magic Of Flight shows the band is as adept at serenading ears, the track a tantalising mix of darkly grained vocals and simple but suggestive melody courted by the shadowed air of bass. It is hard to say that either is overly unique but both tracks, as the album, simply tempt and persuade with a sublime touch and invention.

More of that country breeding infests the lively Black Tie next with the following Preacher entangling itself in a web of blues endeavour and though neither quite match up to songs before them, each leave satisfaction thick and ears hungry for more which the closing and fiery rock ‘n’ roll of Don’t Hold It Against Me, Unless It Gets Hard provides in fine style. With rampant rhythms and tangy grooves it leaves a lingering taste of the album and the inspiration of a swift return into the rousing triumph of Sucker.

Sucker might not be the most unique slab of rock ‘n roll heard this year but it is one of the most enjoyable so we dare you to take a punt on Welcome Back Delta.

Sucker is out now and available @ http://welcomebackdelta.bandcamp.com/

Upcoming Live Dates

11th November- HARD ROCK HELL Festival

26th November- The Exchange, Bristol (Supporting Planet of Zeus)

http://welcomebackdelta.co.uk/   https://www.facebook.com/Welcomebackdelta

Pete RingMaster 22/09/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Possessor – Dead By Dawn

Possessor_RingMasterReview

Still drawing new attention with their previous offerings, British metallers Possessor unleash new album Dead By Dawn, a mouth-watering threat of their rawest, most voracious sound yet. Continuing to conjure their individual fusion of old school fuelled metal embracing everything from heavy and blackened death metal through to doom/occult and stoner infused thrash the London trio cast a viciously malevolent and addictively compelling infestation of ears and instinctive pleasure with their latest offering.

Formed in 2013, Possessor teased and tempted with the Wings of Fire demo in 2014 before making a far greater impression with their self-titled debut album later that year. Hellacious and demonic in equal enterprise, the band’s reputation and acclaim garnering stature was given another injection of energy with last year’s Stay Dead EP. Its four tracks breached a new level in sound and adventure by the threesome of vocalist/guitarist Graham Bywater, bassist Marc Brereton, and drummer Matthew Radford; one now pushed again by Dead By Dawn.

The album opens with Afterburner and its sinister, cinematic intro. As shadows collude with aural drama, it fades into the ravenous jaws of the opener, a mesh of riffs and rhythms which go straight for the jugular. The meatiest groove aligns to a primal energy and intensity, they soon entwined in a sonic twine of guitar and the effect cloaked tones of Bywater. Previous releases hinted at a Nurse/Troublegum era Therapy? essence in the band’s sound; the first song shows it has become an even more intense flavouring but still without diluting the distinctive tone and invention of the Possessor sound.

Predatory and inescapably infectious with Sabbath meets Electric Wizard overtones also to its body; the excellent start makes way for the similarly immense and thrilling Scorpion Swamp. Straight away the grievous growl of Brereton’s bass has ears gripped and lips licked, the appetite enflamed further by the sorcerous grooves and rabid hooks joining the mix. Again echoes of the Northern Ireland trio are a vibrant spicing as Possessor and track rumble and grumble upon the senses and imagination, the song an ever twisting web of thrash driven, multi-flavoured metal.

art_RingMasterReviewBeneath the Chapel takes over next, an encounter growing in ears with a less forceful character compared to its predecessors but one soon sharing its own captivating net of flesh whipping beats and rapacious grooves to seriously please. Again within an ever tempestuous nature irresistible hooks taunt and tempt, providing rich bait within the rawest roar of sound to come from the band in any offering yet and the same template seeds the following Without Warning, a design breeding another individual treat within the album. A tempest of grooves and antagonistic ferocity it simply blossoms into a psyche infesting avalanche of predacious animosity to leave a hunger for more.

Things take a breath just a touch as Slaughter High enters next upon another evocative bassline from Brereton, its suggestive twang absorbing bait deviously leading the listener into another waiting beast of sound. Arguably the most old school sounding song on the release, it gnaws at the senses as riffs venomously prowl and the swinging beats of Radford flail flesh with rapier like effect. More destructive and gripping with every passing minute the brute of a proposition departs in a cold storm to let Terror Tripping step forward with its own cantankerous and primal rock ‘n’ roll. Taking a touch more time to thickly persuade compared to the other songs before it, the track is soon seeing swinging bodies and eager satisfaction in its rip tide, especially when it shares another ear exciting hook.

A pair of instrumentals comes next, The Creeps another cinematic scene setting piece parading a glorious and voodoo-esque rhythmic enticement before Midnight devours the body and imagination with its blackened heavy metal and feverishly stomping aural necromancy. Both tracks has ears enslaved and thoughts conjuring before the closing drama of The Curse of the Hearse revels in the individual skills and craft of all three Possessor members, aspects uniting in an incendiary provocation bringing Dead By Dawn to an almighty end.

Possessor get bigger, better, and more creatively barbarous with every release and indeed more irresistible. A treat for fans and a thrilling introduction to Possessor for newcomers, Dead By Dawn and its creators are the kind of propositions metal probably does not appreciate or notice enough but would be a much blander place without.

Dead By Dawn is out now @ http://possessor.bandcamp.com/album/dead-by-dawn

https://www.facebook.com/possessorband

Pete RingMaster 21/08/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright