Astral Cloud Ashes – Dear Absentee Creator

Eighteen months or so in the making, Dear Absentee Creator is the keenly awaited successor to the critically well-received debut album marking Astral Cloud Ashes out as one inescapably magnetic encounter.  Released in 2016, Too Close to the Noise Floor was a collection of songs which intrigued as they pleasured, fascinated as they almost forcibly introduced an ear grabbing new artist to the British music scene. Now Dear Absentee Creator takes all the prowess and potential of its predecessor to the next level with eleven tracks which seduce the imagination and stir ears with their infectious adventures.

Astral Cloud Ashes is the solo project of Jersey hailing multi-instrumentalist Antony Walker who had already caught our ears and appetite as one half of also Channel Islands bred outfit Select All Delete Save As . Formed in 2016, the band swiftly sparked keen interest with the title track of that subsequent first album. The full bodied Too Close to the Noise Floor really stirred attention and praise with its release later that first year and a sound which lies somewhere between the embraces of indie rock, alt-pop, and math rock being self-tagged as Future-core. To be fair, enjoyably it is a proposition very difficult to pin down, familiar in some ways, boldly individual in a great many others, and as proven by the new encounter, always at ease captivating the senses.

Whereas Too Close to the Noise Floor saw backing vocalist Jason Neil a thick presence alongside, Dear Absentee Creator is all Walker with just a few guests in pianist/vocalist James Elliott Field (Tubelord, Tall Ships) on the album’s closing song and drummer Max Saidi on three others as well as Melle Brower (vocalist for Dutch metallers Illusionless) providing cymbals on Clockhand Reversal. Mastered as that earlier album by Tim Turan, Dear Absentee Creator references Satoshi Nakamoto in its title, the creator of the world’s first ever cryptocurrency in Bitcoin, whose true identity has never been known to anyone and has not been heard of since the final weeks of 2010.

It opens up with the melodic enticement of News Anchor Breaks Rank, a short mellow invitation with drama in its heart and touch as Walker’s ever resourceful vocal mix rises within a guitar nurtured weave. It is the opening breath to next up Moonphase Bloom, and outstanding track which helped spark anticipation for the album with its release as a single last year. A virulently infectious and lively slice of pop rock as tempting when it is a melodic smoulder or a rousing rocker, the track just draws ears into the sound and imagination of Walker like a magnet; its success as a single pure evidence.

Old Moods follows, it too a bouncy proposal with emotion lining every melody and word, adventure each twist and turn. Almost fiery in its eruptions and firmly mesmeric in its melancholic calms, the song is a skilfully woven clamour drawing on a host of pop and indie flavours with subtlety and open hunger before A Reformatted Heart goes off on its own catchy stroll wrapped in melodic intimation.

Already four tracks in and Dear Absentee Creator showed a feistier character and contagion of sound compared to its predecessor with the same calm elegance and lively imagination which helped the first album stand out. It has a roar to it which just incites attention even as in next up Ryukyu Kingdom Declares Independence, a song which ebbs and flows in intensity almost reflecting from a standstill at times as Walker croons throughout with a gentle touch.

Similarly Ironed Shirts bounces along with a mercurial gait, every move inviting a willing body to match its changeable energy, the imagination bound in its expectations escaping invention, while Dallas Knows the Reason just enthrals from its emotive harmonic gaze to its voracious rock explosions. The grumble of the bass is irresistible, the flames of guitar compelling as the track seduces, lulls into false safety, and preys on ears and thoughts with its tenacious sound around a tale of a gun-wielding girl from Texas.

The piano led, metronomic tease of the following Clock Hand Reversal is just as richly enticing, that clever bait opening up a tenacious shimmer of melody and harmony with a volatile underbelly which springs up again and again to add to the track’s captivation.

The fuzzy pop ‘n’ roll of Satoshi Nakamoto vs Unyielding Desire for BAU is a quick match in wrapping up ears and appetite in its creative tapestry, the melodic senses entangling of Gush just as charismatic and increasingly gripping before Kimobetsu Love brings the album to a fine conclusion. A song which blossomed over plays rather than making the immediate impact of some of its companions, it epitomises the imaginative and arresting not forgetting perpetually enticing sound of Astral Cloud Ashes.

It is increasingly impossible to compare the band’s sound to others such its growing uniqueness but imagine a pinch of House Of Love intimacy, a slither of Weezer infectiousness, and an infusion of XTC melodic imagination all blended together in a Tubelord fired mortar and you get an idea of the creative breath and pop rock fun of Astral Cloud Ashes.

Dear Absentee Creator is out now across major online stores and

https://astralcloudashes.bandcamp.com/album/dear-absentee-creator

https://www.facebook.com/astralcloudashes/   https://twitter.com/AstralCloudAsh

Pete RingMaster 26/05/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Astral Cloud Ashes – Dallas Knows the Reason

With the recent announcement of the release of second album Dear Absentee Creator early 2018, British alternative rock outfit Astral Cloud Ashes have provided a highly flavoursome teaser with new single Dallas Knows the Reason. The liveliest slice of rapacious rock ‘n’ roll from the band yet without losing the melodic enterprise and bold touches which has marked the band out as a very appetising prospect to date, the song grabs attention with ease, luring the body into similarly eager involvement.

Astral Cloud Ashes is the solo project of Jersey, Channel Islands hailing vocalist/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Antony Walker, though he is someone unafraid to embrace other’s talents if needed, his forthcoming album proof in featuring James Elliott Field (Tubelord, Tall Ships) and Max Saidion on certain songs. Through singles and impressive debut album Too Close to the Noise Floor, the band stirred close attention and acclaim across 2016; a success, if Dallas Knows the Reason, backed by its just as magnetic predecessor Moonphase Bloom also taken from Dear Absentee Creator, is a sign of things to be soon discovered which could very well escalate.

Infused with lyrical content dealing with a gun-wielding girl from Texas, Dallas Knows the Reason instantly lures ears with vocal harmonies and lyrical suggestion, rhythms lurking with a firm hand as melodies meander just waiting to explode into life. That they do as the song quickly hits its tenacious stroll, rhythms now bounding through ears as the bass grumbles alongside the fiery exploits of the guitar. It is a highly infectious affair, its slight lulls intensifying the song’s swing once it erupts again.

Walker’s vocals are as distinct and warmly infectious as ever, leaping across the robust endeavours of the song with matching magnetism as feet and hips respond to the natural flirtation of the track’s rock ‘n’ roll. Increasingly more compelling with every listen, Dallas Knows the Reason sees Astral Cloud Ashes launching upon a new plateau of sound and imagination. Bands such as The Pixies, The Cure, Tubelord, and XTC are often referenced with Astral Cloud Ashes but song by song as shown here its sound is becoming more unique which makes the anticipation for Dear Absentee Creator all the keener.

Dallas Knows the Reason is available now @ https://astralcloudashes.bandcamp.com/track/dallas-knows-the-reason

https://www.facebook.com/astralcloudashes    https://twitter.com/AstralCloudAsh    https://www.instagram.com/astral_cloud_ashes/

Pete RingMaster 19/12/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Wax Futures – The Museum of Everything

Photo by Jonathan Dadds.

UK band Wax Futures to our mind has never fully fitted their post hardcore tag with their flavoursome sound but it has never been less applicable than with the bands new mini album The Museum of Everything. Boasting a virulent contagion of sound as indie, post punk, and new wave as it is math and punk rock, the release is a refreshing and inimitable slice of rock ‘n’ roll revelling in the new maturity and imagination fuelling the trio’s songwriting and music.

Formed in the final breaths of 2011, the Telford hailing band soon made their mark on the local live scene. With a growing support and reputation they released the Breadcrumbs EP in 2013, before tempting bigger attention with debut album A History of Things to Come; it like its successor a seven track offering with a more post hardcore heart to its enterprise. With their live presence taking in the UK, sharing stages with the likes of Limp Bizkit, Bear Makes Ninja, &U&I, Tall Ships, Alpha Male Tea Party, Castrovalva, Bad Grammar, The JCQ, and Idles along the way, the band have spent their time working on The Museum of Everything, evolving and pushing their creativity simultaneously. It was a concentrated effort now easily and swiftly heard in the album and greedily enjoyed twist by turn.

Recorded with Ryan Pinson (God Damn, Bad Grammar), produced and mastered by Tom Woodhead (ex-¡Forward, Russia!), The Museum of Everything gets down to infectious business straight away as a lone riff squirrels itself in ears, a lure soon joined by a vocal count and controlled swipes from Simon’s sticks. As they all enjoyably collude, Sandcastles in the Snow comes alive, a scuzzy hook reaching out as rhythms slip into a controlled canter while vocals further capture ears in tandem with the groove escaping Graham’s guitar. With the easy going meander of Kieran’s bass teasing feet, the song becomes busier, heading into an equally undemanding but inescapably catchy chorus. Never quite igniting but with a neat whiff of early Kaiser Chiefs to its subsequent enticement, the song is a compelling start to the album setting out an appetising canvas of invention soon taken to bigger and bolder heights.

Demographics is next and instantly with its opening melody alone, brings a Young Knives feel into play, one only accentuated by the vocals and the subsequent web of sonic intrigue and infectious collaboration across the threesome. Hooks grab attention throughout, littering the aural drama and flirtatious energy combining like a mix of At the Drive-In and Swound! but only creating its own distinct adventure. A constant nag on body and pleasure, the song makes way for the just as impressive (My Body is a) Landfill. Instantly, more boisterous in energy and just as enticing in contagious endeavour as its predecessors, the track strolls along with a knowing and inventive swagger; its hands on receptive hips and tenacious feet teasing and taunting them into action with its creative zeal. As all tracks there is also a meatier, raucous edge and air which coats it all, the band’s punk instincts adding to the increasingly tenacious and imposing treat.

From one major highlight to another and Wreck of the Hesperus. As soon as it lays down its first line of bait, the song becomes a tapestry of seductive espionage woven from deceptive hooks and devious grooves, neither seemingly as intrusive and enslaving as they really are. With every passing second, the band’s rock ‘n’ roll heart becomes bolder, closing in on a volatile, increasingly menacing psychosis of a finale to leave an appetite hungry for more.

That heavier, irritable essence is still hanging round as next up The 90s Called, It Wants Yr Misspent Youth Back rumbles in ears. It is a ravenous bordering on rabid incitement from which a smiling groove and teasing stroll breaks free. Now with its relaxed but irresistible swing wrapped ingenuity fondling the senses, the song simply traps and chains the passions with something akin to We Are The Physics meets The Futureheads.

The cosmic twittering of { } leads in the evocative pastures of closing track Brittle Bones and an epic and increasingly dense rapture of melodic suggestion and angular jangles around rhythmic trespass. Holding its own lively groove led saunter, the song sees Wax Futures push their emotive intensity and creative designing yet again; both intensifying as the song brews and boils up into a powder keg of sonic turbulence eventually sending the album off into spatial unknowns leaving the listener lingering on keen anticipation for what comes next from the band.

The Museum of Everything is Wax Futures upon a new lofty plateau in songwriting and sound. At times it might not ignite as it hints it will and maybe lacks a final bite to its most agitated moments but only announces the band as a real player within the UK rock scene and a stalwart in the passions of certainly our personal soundtracks, something hard to imagine being alone in.

The Museum of Everything is out now @ https://waxfutures.bandcamp.com/

 

https://www.facebook.com/waxfutures    https://twitter.com/waxfuturesuk

Pete RingMaster 05/04/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Tall Ships: Everything Touching

 

Through their EPs and singles UK alternative band Tall Ships has garnered strong praise and inspired an equally enthused anticipation for their debut album Everything Touching. With the release the trio has matched and exceeded expectations with a  mesmeric piece of inventive songwriting and craft which thrills and excites across its precise and imaginative presence. It has one drooling with discord laced sonic scorching, robust and instinctive rhythms, and enveloping atmospheres, all brought with intrigue and at times slightly unusual but always successful ideas.

The trio from Brighton/Cornwall fuse a tight and infectious weave of alternative, math, and indie rock into even more acutely gripping conjurations to dazzle and incite the senses. Previous EP There Is Nothing But Chemistry Here arguably was the moment the band lit interest in their sounds on a wider level, something which Everything Touching one can only assume, will accelerate dramatically. The album offers songs which are intricate and clever but never with a hint of indulgence or waste to their composition and realisation. They are like a latter day version of early XTC fused with the technical hooky hunger of Baddies and the expressive touch of Letters, a mix which simply lights up the air. The songs in whatever shade of imagination they come in are a heated breath of individuality to immerse within or share emotions with, usually both.

The album starts with the first single from the release, T=O. It is a hypnotic taunt of sonically scything guitar strokes and brooding rhythms which are as persistent as they are a niggling joy. A bruising slice of noise pop brought with a flowing melodic caress the track removes itself from the coarse rub to place a warm elegant kiss from keys and vocals on the ear. It sends shivers down the spine before the re-emerging abrasive pleasure returns to lift the intensity and temperature once again. It is a wholly contagious start as incendiary as it is a smouldering.

The following instrumental Best Ever is equally irresistible, its opening crunching energy and rampant beats alongside dazzling sonic pick pocketing of the senses the illegitimate offspring from parts of the Go 2 album from XTC. Like the opener the hypnotic bulk of its body finds the piece harsh in its touch but delicious in the effect. The sudden repose into solitary guitar strokes is un predicted and time for thought before the return to the almost corrosive flight of the track returns for a sizzling crescendo.

Next up  Phosphorescence and Oscar spark further fires inside, the first a dazzling and almost disorientating wash of melodic freshness and eager passion surrounding another deliciously resonating citrus sonic niggle whilst the second jangles with a flattened hook and grumpy bass sound behind warm and soothingly tender harmonies and melodies. The tang to its flavouring is again XTC like, reminding of the Drums And Wires through to English Settlement era.

The album includes two re-workings of songs released on the earlier EPs in Ode To Ancestors and Books, both with a different face to their body and openly hungrier without losing their former potency. The first of the pair is a lovely brew of emotive whispers leading to choppy golden pokes of sound and soaring harmonies and impossible not to be enamoured with through the breeze of the song and its open heart.

The ending stomp of the song is repeated in a different gait in Gallop, the last single from the album. It is a romping rebel rouser of thoughts and reflective feelings brought with a hint of mischief and contented acceptance. After this point the album feels like it shifts  its intent, the final four songs of the album shimmering and immersive cuts of shining harmonics and teasing melodies without the greedy appetite to  raise a little storm. They also do not quite match the triumph of the earlier songs but all leave one basking in pleasure and gratitude  with the closing Murmurations just aural poetry of evocative sounds  with a slowly rising intensity and towering grandeur.

Everything Touching is an outstanding release and Tall Ships a band to be watched and enjoyed very closely now and in the future, a band to surprise, thrill, and leave you gasping.

http://wearetallships.co.uk

RingMaster 14/10/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright