Squidhead – Cult[ist]

“There are horrors beyond life’s edge that we do not suspect, and once in a while man’s evil prying calls them just within our range.” [H.P. Lovecraft, The Thing on the Doorstep]

It is more than curiosity which fuels the imagination and predacious captivation of the debut album from Squidhead. Inspired by the darkest depths of the nightmare universe of HP Lovecraft, Cult[ist] lures and exposes the listener to unmentionable and unforgettable horrors across eight slices of modern death metal though that is a tag which just does not do it justice. Technically compelling with an array of flavours spun from an additional fusion of industrial and electronic metal, the album is an invasive often venomous encounter but one just imposingly seductive.

With its seeds sown in 2009, Squidhead started in Belgian as the instrumental solo project of The Painter, better known back then as Pierre Minet. The project was officially unveiled at the end of 2013 with the Prohibition EP released a few months later to potent acclaim. It was a stirring adventure for ears and the imagination, Minet’s craft and enterprise striking across its five tracks inspiring thoughts to conjure their own dark tales. As the band ventured upon the live scene, Squidhead has subsequently evolved in personnel and in turn sound. The result of three years creativity, Cult[ist] is an infernal treat of a proposition around the ever magnetic prowess of The Painter. Alongside him The Crawler unleashes tenebrific intimation through his bass and The Orator unveils nightmare realms and imagery with visceral vocal trespasses; each a source of dark tempting more than complementing the eight stringed conjuring of The Painter.

The storm courted opening to the album coaxes ears into the waiting clutches of Abyssal Worshippers, keys hinting as they lay a sinister lure into the waiting web of intrigue and opacity. Swiftly The Painter immerses ears and thoughts with technical adventure, his strings flaming with suggestion and craft but equally as potent settling into the almost carnivorous trap laid by the feral jaws of the bass and The Orator’s throat scarred vocal painting. Having run with the imagination on Squidhead’s previous offering, it was a surprise and initially wrong-footing to have some of the visual interpretation done for us but quickly the band showed there was plenty of room to create one’s own nightmares too.

The great start is immediately built upon by Mantra Of Insanity, the initial spiral of guitar drawing the fierce punches of drums and the gnarly breath of the bass before Orator spills the song’s animus of intent. Even in its rampant state, the track feels like it is stalking the senses, preying on their fears and nightmares whilst teasing with melodic tendrils carrying their own line in devious relish. The bass sadly loses some of its irritability as the song evolves and becomes an incantation like proposal yet it all works perfectly before Awakening stretches it’s carnal and in time more elegant if still rabid appetite led by the ever magnetic endeavour of The Painter. As with all tracks, every listen brings new twists and shadows to explore and similarly each delves into their pits sees the songs blossoming to greater heights.

Through the invasive dynamics and technical claws of the excellent Lucid Nightmares and the murky palette of the equally riveting Mad Painter, band and album entwine the senses in a tapestry of creative cunning and manipulation. Both tracks just enslaved attention and an already greedy appetite for the release while Whispers Of The Deep prowls and summons thoughts with intimidation and atmospheric beauty to match its predecessor’s captivation.

Similarly Torn Skies ignited the psyche and passion with its bordering on barbarous stomp, its rock ‘n’ roll virulent and voracious with spinning webs of guitar accentuating its creative alchemy. Leaving the senses breathless and imagination ablaze, the track is another major rival for best moment within Cult[ist] though the choice does twist and turn among this last quartet of tracks much as they themselves within their seriously tempting bodies.

Verbis Diablo brings the album to a richly alluring close, its more mercurial gait and air posing challenges, perils, and temptations to greedily devour. It is a fine end to an album we hoped big things of due to Prohibition but has revealed a band and sound which has evolved to be a far richer and darker experience, much as the worlds it finds its inspirations in.

Cult[ist] is out now @ https://thesquidhead.bandcamp.com/

http://www.squidhead.be/   https://www.facebook.com/squidheadproject

Pete RingMaster 26/04/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Harbinger – Human Dust

You may have caught on to the buzz brewing forcibly around UK metallers Harbinger, an increasing clamour which their new EP, Human Dust, alone provides a forceful host of reasons for. Forging technical and death metal in one ferocious tempest unafraid to stretch its adventurous instincts, the release offers six slices of raptorial sound ken to prey on the senses. It is a striking next step from the London based quintet displaying thick potential aligned with their already realised qualities in one attention grabbing exploit.

The follow-up to their well-received debut EP, Paroxysm, the ravenous Human Dust takes little time in stirring ears and appetite with ravenous riffery, swinging rhythms, and sonic dexterity; all colluding with melodic imagination and a blossoming unpredictability which was not so potent in the first release. Everything from songwriting to individual adventure, the dual vocal attack of frontman Tom Gardner to simply the band’s imagination is a bolder step up from Paroxysm.

Human Dust opens up with the instantly invigorating roar of The End of Time. The guitars of Ben Sutherland and Charlie Griffiths barely use a breath to weave a web of intrigue and rabid riffing, their lure matched by the more primal swings of drummer Joel Scott and Kris Aarre’s mutually heavy bassline. It is a fierce and swiftly infectious affair, hooks and sonic dexterity a flirtatious trespass as Gardner roars and brawls with the senses, combining throat raw growls with more harmonic bellows to fine effect. The track swings and savages as it twists and turns through technical and hostile textures, pleasuring and punishing in equal highly agreeable measure.

Just as magnetic and impressing is Humanity’s Limit, the second track seeing Gardner add even cleaner warmer tones to his increasingly captivating attack. The robustly flickering beats of Scott from the start take no prisoners, neither too the rapacious riffs and technical teased grooves and flames which sear and seduce the senses from within a storm at times as primal as it is imaginative. Indicative of all songs, every listen reveals something fresh in the song’s cauldron, next up Psychosomatic similarly sharing richer rewards with every venture into its barbarous yet exotic squall.

Two or three seconds of deceitful calm draws ears into the all-consuming roar of The Darkness of June straight after, the track sharing closely related melodic temptation and arpeggio tenacity to its predecessor within its caustic surge. There is a touch of similarity across some tracks, certainly on a less than intense listen but nothing to particularly defuse the EP’s potency with purposeful attention revealing all the individual qualities of each song.

Human Dust literally burns the senses next, tempering its hostility with melodic caresses and inciting it again with spicy almost toxic grooves and the ever resourceful vocal challenge of Gardner. The guitars provide a carousel of craft and enterprise, rhythms the bullish heart whilst instinctive imagination shapes the song’s compelling character and the wonderful melodic bridge between the track and its EP closing successor II. Captive/Hated. Again time allows the track to share its full richness but straight away it has ears hooked and pleasure sparked with its tenacious exploits and adventurous mercurial twists.

Human Dust as well as proving a thoroughly enjoyable engagement is a bigger step in Harbinger finding true uniqueness in their sound. They are no quite there yet but definitely moving in the right direction whilst providing gripping music certainly fans of bands like Decapitated and Sylosis will find strongly intriguing.

The Human Dust EP is out now through Basick Records; physically @ https://basick.supplies/collections/harbinger  and digitally @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/human-dust-ep/id1218457845?app=itunes&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

http://www.facebook.com/harbingerriffs/

Pete RingMaster 21/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Summoned – Sessions

“Sessions is a concept album about a man who wakes up from a coma and is sent straight into a psychiatric hospital where he begins a series of tests against his will. In the process he meets a doctor who remains with him every step of the way. During these sessions, with the guidance of the doctor, he is transported into the outer reaches of his own mind to confront the insecurities and demons that plague him.”

Resembling the premise behind the new album from ferocious US technical metallers The Summoned is the listening experience of Sessions. The nine track exploration is a kaleidoscope of sound and technical craft which barely gives a moment for a breath within its often infernal tempest taking the listener into the darkest, deepest recesses of their psyche. It is a demanding and intensive journey across story and album but ultimately one seriously rewarding one.

Formed in 2007 and drawing on the inspiration of bands such as Death, Between The Buried And Me, Decapitated, The Faceless, Behemoth, The Dillinger Escape Plan and others, the Boston, Massachusetts hailing quartet pretty soon revealed their own individual character of sound. Since then they have relentlessly pushed theirs and in turn metal’s assumed boundaries to find a strain of uniqueness really having its head in the band’s latest encounter.  After the Harvest EP in their first year, the 2011 released debut album If Only Minds Could Paint Pictures garnered a wealth of critical acclaim, its success supported and followed by the band successfully undertaking a 23-day headline tour spanning the U.S. and Canada as well as being part of 2012 Summer Slaughter Tour with Cannibal Corpse, Between The Buried and Me, The Faceless and more. From the winter of 2013, The Summoned began working on their second album, entering the studio with long-time friend Evan Sammons of Last Chance To Reason to begin the recording process. The next three years were concentrated on the creation of Sessions, time and intensive attention showing all its qualities in a release even more enthralling as well as bolder and more accomplished, technically and emotionally, than its impressive predecessor.

Within seconds, opener The Pendulum Swing has the senses twisted and imagination askew, the guitars of Shaun Murphy and Jarred Sullivan spinning a web of disorientating metal aligned to post punk discordance as bass and drums grumble and impose their psychosis. Vocalist Stephen Thompson supported by the equally rawer tones of Murphy, is a venomous scourge, words and emotions a primal yet composed assault as blurry as precise in their invasively relentless suggestiveness.  The determined, unyielding nagging is a constant across sound and album, every aspect and texture a ruthless persistence in its moment within a just as eagerly evolving unpredictable tapestry.

The track is an absorbing, thrilling start; a rabid introduction but eclipsed in ferocity by the following Faradic. As the rhythms of drummer Sam Hang ravage the senses yet still manage to be an anthemic enticement, guitars dance provocatively and psychotically on the imagination. Flavours and styles proceed to flicker with enthusiastic dexterity and boldness across the song, jazzy and progressive turns colluding with extreme and technical metal tenacity as vocals flow with a toxic essence. As in the first and next up Fractal Patterns, there is a real virulence to everything too; an infectiousness veining every fury and creative twist with the third track a debilitating but equally magnetic carousel of sound and invention. Melodies spawn from ravenous hostility, deranged trespasses from atmospheric caresses; every second a cauldron of intrigue and harsh drama.

Through the possibly even more primal and savage The Grave Mistake and the dark climate of Built of Glass there is no lessening of the resolute examination of senses and imagination; both tracks a flight of startling adventure and striking craft with the first a spiral into disturbing calm from cyclonic agitation, and back again, while the second aligns melancholy and sonic savagery within its dramatic almost cinematic theatre.

Both Vertiginous with its whirling melodies and rotating spine of far more carnal strains and the unbridled ferocity of the equally multi-flavoured Primogenial Birth keep ears and imagination gripped and consumed, the latter at times as primal as it is in other moments elegant and jazzily bewitching. Again neither leave a second free for the body to relax or expectations to try and rear their head, Recollection similarly a storm of sonic transgression and off-kilter progressive enterprise which, as all tracks, really is impossible to truly represent in word and suggestion.

Closing up with the initially melodically charming, hope embraced Satori, the album is simply one uncompromisingly compelling proposition. Shadows soon crowd and invade the listener as the final track hits its creatively hungry stride; pretty much epitomising the whole of Sessions with its capricious yet intensely woven and nurtured web.

Certainly Sessions is an imposing listen to match its presence and hard to take all in over a few let alone a single listen but rewards with every quest taken. Equally at times due to Thompson’s fine but exacting raw delivery lyrically the album shares moments lyrically which remain a mystery in the tale but are potently compensated by the clear emotion of the sounds and his presence; in saying that though a thicker use of the clean touches provided by Murphy within both Fractal Patterns and Built of Glass would make for another intriguing dynamic ahead. Nothing though defuses the potency and pleasure of sharing time with the album, or the calm to contemplate after its outstanding tempest.

Sessions is out now @ http://store.thesummoned.com/album/sessions

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

Pete RingMaster 21/06/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Replicate – A Selfish Dream

artwork_RingMasterReview

A riveting mix of progressive and technical death metal, A Selfish Dream is one of those releases which may not have you falling back in love with the genres breeding it but certainly inspires a new appetite to go exploring them and the inspirations to the project such as Death, Cynic, Atheist, and Carcass. The new EP from LA based band The Replicate, it is a brief imagination stroking, ear striking proposal as unpredictable as it is highly enjoyable.

The Replicate is the brainchild of Sandesh Nagaraj whose CV includes being part of nineties Indian death metallers Myndsnare, Extinct Reflections, and Stranglehold. Uniting with a host of friends for his project, guitarist/bassist Nagaraj needs little time to grab the imagination and keen attention with A Selfish Dream, its opening track casting a web of sonic and technical temptation.

thereplicate-artwork_RingMasterReviewChainsaw Of God instantly wraps a spicy groove around ears, a persistent lure soon joined by a canter of robust rhythms and the raw throated rasps of guest vocalist/lyricist Morgan Wells. His irritable yet compelling tones stand astride the driving beats of Ray Rojo and Nagaraj’s nagging riffs. It is a tenaciously magnetic affair especially when grooves with clinging spice entwine the impassioned ire of the track and a solo from William Von Arx which brings an almost sinister cosmic shade to the outstanding track.

The following Eugenicide has its own suggestive drama in sound and presence, grooves again evocatively wrapping the senses with an almost picturesque quality as the predacious gravelly tones of vocalist Jordan Nalley trespass ears with his rich words. Also featuring the dark alluring basslines of Kaitie Sly, the track is an absorbing, haunting assault as different in nature and captivating enterprise to its predecessor as it is similar in compelling invention.

A rawer edge and climate descends through The Saline next, its initial sonic intrusion the spark to another virulent canter twisted into a passage of varying energies and unpredictable imagination. Arun Natrajan takes on vocals and lyrics for the EP’s third song; he also providing a rapacious growl within a controlled yet tempestuous surge of enmity and corrosive yet inviting sound.

Completed by the short instrumental of its title track, a shimmering piece of emotional starkness, A Selfish Dream is as gripping as it is imposingly intrusive. Its briefness of length is the only niggle, each song successfully never pushing its stay but combined providing a mere ten minutes of excellence; a moment in time admittedly very easy to replay and en joy time and time again.

A Selfish Dream is out now @ https://thereplicate.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/thereplicateband

Pete RingMaster 18/01/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Synapses – Devoutness

band_RingMaster Review

Making our first acquaintance with Italian death metallers Synapses through their new album Devoutness, it is fair to say that ears and psyche were bewitched, certainly brutalised and twisted this way and that too by their hellacious sound, but ultimately mesmerised by the maelstrom they conjure. Twelve tracks of unrelenting technical death metal, the album is pure bedlam, an ordered and finely crafted mayhem, but invigorating bedlam all the same and quite irresistible. Discord and off-kilter ingenuity is as rampant in the tapestry of sound fuelling each track as fierce imagination and rabid aggression, with Devoutness overall, one insatiable and thrilling erosion of the senses.

Hailing from Brescia, Synapses was formed in 2008 by guitarist Alessio “Ciulaz” Fassoli, vocalist Giovanni “Kane” Canedoli, and bassist Giordano “Sez” Savoldi after the demise of their previous band Underhate. Quickly enlisting drummer Riccardo “Cannibale” Fanara, the quartet set about creating “modern, violent and frenetic death metal, which has its roots in the 90’s, but with the awareness of a more modern sound.” A promo appeared in 2009 to stir up attention, with the band debuting their presence and fury on the live scene soon after to increasing success. Debut album Expiation was unleashed in 2012 to swift and generally acclaimed attention, its arrival backed by a tour around Europe and shows within their homeland. Last year Synapses set about writing and creating Devoutness, a release in our humble opinion destined to put the band on the most intensive extreme metal maps.

SYNAPSES_DEVOUTNESS_COVER_RingMaster Review   The provocative Intro starts things off, its chilling atmosphere and dystopian ambience invasive as it sets up an expulsion of enthralling sound and craft. Once into its instrumental stride, the piece lays the technical foundation for the album musically with that still immersive stark air setting the lyrical tone, both quickly taken to new levels by Spiral of Devoutness. Another dose of haunted scenery grips ears before quickly erupting in ferocious artillery of rhythmic venom and similarly malevolent riffery. At its centre there is also a magnetically tenacious swing, the track for all its brutality ridiculously contagious as guitar and bass groove like pole dancers around the toxic spine of the assault. Quickly imagination comes into play too, the song, and not for the last time in its body, seemingly slipping away before starting up the whole creative ball game all over again, with even more destructive tendencies and hardcore bred belligerence joining every fresh twist in the design.

The scintillating trespass of body and emotions continues and escalates within the following Legates Of Tyranny. From its first breath the track is darker, more malicious, and uncompromising than the last, soon devouring ears and scoring the senses whilst also carrying its own intensely catchy weaponry of temptation. The flesh scarring tones of Canedoli almost wear the blood of the vocalist’s surely torn throat such his raw and caustic delivery, and initially against the cleaner but no less intrusive sounds, it took a while to get on with his attack. By the second and definitely the third listen though, everything slips into place and as the third track shows, sparks a real appetite for what is on offer.

Force-Fed With Gore is a torrent of searing and sudden twists aligned to concussive rhythms and predatory grooves, and the most unpredictable and exploratory track so far upon Devoutness. It is still driven by a primal intensity and want, but shaped by captivating guitar ideation and splintered with unexpected detours which, even if for mere seconds, wrong-foot and enthral. It is a template which is stretched further across the rest of the album, the next up A Place Will Be Forgotten craving a whirlwind of sonic tendrils around rhythmic hostility and after another momentary pause, spewing a rabidity of carnal viciousness infused with melodic acidity. As you can already surmise, things constantly are in a state of change and the song continues to cast a salaciously punishing but compelling dance impossible to turn your back on.

A climatic detour into a sonically blistered and melodically provocative soundscape comes next in Hybrid Soul, before Phoenix Condemned spills its animus of sound and intent, vocals an inhospitable and dirty scourge against the imposing tang of the guitars’ enterprise and ruinous creative spite. It is a rancor though rippling with contagious toxins and fiercely addictive virulence, a brutalising which simultaneously seduces.

Day Of The Pest steps forward to grab a favourite position within Devoutness, the track cancerous in heart and tone but set spinning by delicious discord caked slithers of guitar and spikily cantankerous rhythms matched by ravenously jagged riffery. As all tracks in their individual ways, it is a kaleidoscope of invention and malice, relentlessly fascinating and uncompromising but, even as mighty as it is, quickly outshone by the psychotic imagination and craft of Expiation. The instrumental overwhelms ears and immerses the imagination in a carnal look at a busy and selfish world; the track sure to inspire different journeys and thoughts in each of those coursing through its evocative landscape but sure to inspire.

Both Sacrilegious and Sickening Runes inflame ears and incite greedier hunger for their pestilential ingenuity. The first has poisonous mystique flowing through the sonic veins of its grooves and barbarous animosity soaking vocals and intensity, every minute of the song a searing and bruising threat whilst its successor is a furnace of crippling bad blooded craft bred by the skills of Savoldi and Fanara and bound in the jaundiced and exhausting energy and imagination of Fassoli. Both tracks leave the senses disorientated and pleasure full before The End brings the outstanding release to an exhilarating conclusion. It is apocalyptic, haunting, and overwhelming in its immersive qualities; another instrumental that simply and impressively isolates the listener from the real world.

Devoutness is one of the extreme metal highlights of 2015 so far. There is very little to temper enthused words for its cruel and thrilling alchemy, only the small drop out of sound as tracks turn in on themselves and the band swings in potent breakdowns a niggle, but as our promo was digital we will put it down to that, and if not it is nothing to diminish the craft, temptation, and adventure Synapses set free throughout. Quite simply Devoutness is a must check out for all death and technical extreme metal fans.

Devoutness is available from August 4th @ http://synapses.bigcartel.com/

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

RingMaster 03/08/2015

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

 

Ferium – Reflections

Ferium1.lo

Parading a roaring muscular sound built from numerous metallic essences around a death metal spine, Israeli metallers Ferium more than lives up to the brewing buzz around them with debut album Reflections. Twelve slabs of creative brutality and imaginatively skilled endeavour, the release is a formidable and striking big step into the wider metal world, one which hits hard and impressively initially but only truly reveals its depths and strengths and those of the band across numerous exploits with its intrusive presence. The quintet delves into the rich wells of groove, technical, general extreme metal and more to enhance their core viciousness and persuasion, a fusion as proven by their first full-length which is something not exactly unique but definitely seizing attention and a hungry appetite as it starts setting its own path now and for the future.

Ferium was formed in 2006 taking initial inspirations of Pantera and Lamb Of God into their intent though that expanded over the years with influences from the likes of Textures, Gojira, and Death adding to the fuel driving their invention. Equally growing up in Haifa and the situation in their country has added depth to the lyrical and musical side of their emergence. The band does not directly or openly explore any aspect of the conflict and climate they grew within and felt personally but it is scenery which has brought a raw and uncompromising breath to their sound and presence. Their first release, The New Law EP in 2009 took the band into a strong spotlight at home and further afield, helping to lead Ferium to appearances at big home events such as Summer Carnage and Hallejujahas well as those abroad like Wacken 2009. Last year saw a more intensive time for the band, tours supporting The Agonist, Threat Signal, Mors Principium Est, and Dawn Heist around Europe and the UK following a show opening for Gojira in Israel. The end of 2013 was marked by the band signing a deal with Transcend Music and the worldwide distribution for the 2012 recorded Reflections, a release you sense could open up a highly receptive hunger for their presence.

Opening track By The Book lays an initial abrasive guitar coaxing upon the ears, a sonic wind brewing alongside it before being punctured Reflections Coverby the heavy probing rhythms of drummer Ron Amar. It is an intriguing start, one offering various options of where the song and album might go without revealing anything too soon. It is not long though before the drums increase their pressure, the bass of Yoni Biton closes in with dark intensive shadows, and the guitars of Elram Boxer and Guy Goldenberg sculpt a weave of tight grooves and searing riffs to transfix thoughts and emotions. With the harsh yet welcoming vocal abrasion of Tiran Ezra unleashing the first narrative, the track wakes up eager attention early, leading it into a magnetic fascination which in turn ignites the imagination. The thrilling song does not really explode at any point but is a constant blaze of invention and technical prowess which is stretched to more dramatic adventures across the album, in fact right away with DownHill From Nothing.

The second song entwines the ears in an infection fuelled groove from its first breath, the guitars seducing with full potency as bass and drums badger the senses into another swift submission. Again the vocals graze and roar with an unbridled causticity but only to accentuate the virulent lure of the song. The bass of Biton prowls and growls with understated but open ingenuity throughout the tempestuous offering yet it is the work of Boxer and Goldenberg which more often than not steals the focus upon the song, the melodies and emotive designs from their strings richly colouring song and imagination. Like the first it has an inescapable contagion to its enterprise and especially its grooved bait, and like its successor draws a greedy appetite for its invention.

Both The Very Existence and Mirror exploit an already eager attention with their individual persuasions, the first creating a weave of djent seeded technical manipulation with an almost thrash spawned antagonistic fury of death metal with metalcore bred essences. It is heavier and more intense than its predecessors without dismissing any of the melodically nurtured sonic exploration which marked their success. With a strong evocative ambience also washing the canvas of the song it is a thought provoking and longer to convince encounter, as is its successor though both refuse to relinquish the grip already seized by the release. The second of these two squall over and ravage the senses with again a stronger rabidity; vocally and rhythmically the track an abusive suasion whilst sonically it sears air and flesh, the combination another offering to feed the hunger inside.

The entrance of Side Effects is exceptional, an intimidating but irresistible gentle tempting from the guitars and the perfect lure into the spiteful aggression to follow. Its gait is almost stalking the ears whilst the outstanding bass hook and acidic guitar toxicity steals the passions below an unreserved rhythmic provocation. Its masterful adventure is replaced by the instrumental The Black Eyes, a piece ripe with classical keys elegance and scuzz surfaced energy. It is music which builds its size and intensity across its skilful narrative, inviting the imagination to cast its own tale though it is less successful with the passions especially with the bestial Lust Fool bursting in right away. It is a bear of a song, muscles holding sway within the black density and throat of the onslaught whilst the guitars lash and rhythms pummel the senses around the ever malicious vocals. It is a drama fuelled, adrenaline driven monstrosity of an encounter and thoroughly scintillating.

After the similarly predacious Caustic Value, an intrusion which easily feeds wants without lighting fires, the album takes another upturn with the brilliant Change Of Winds soon matched by Business On Demand. The first of the two romps with and dancing over ears and senses with grooves and jagged riffery from its first second, the track gnawing, jarring, and disorientating senses magnificently whilst Ezra riles syllables and tones for an equally malevolently textured assault, his variety in delivery a constant pleasure. The track twists and lurches wonderfully, all the time depleting energy and scything slices from the synapses until an exhausted pleasure lies in its wake, one soon re-energised by its successor. An open and familiar groove leads the way under the persistent cosh of rhythms and barracking riffs, the temptation recruiting full allegiance for the subsequent savagery vocally and musically which envelops the still dominant groove cast toxins.  Both tracks provide the pinnacle of the album and the band’s songwriting in brutality and epidemic seduction.

The album is concluded by Blood and its title track, the pair insatiable trespasses bringing an outstanding release to a mighty end, the first of the two an insidiously nasty demonic capture of ears and beyond whilst the last song simply churns up and suffocates emotions with mouthwatering invention and crippling intensity respectively. Wrapped in excellent artwork from Eliran Kantor (Hatebreed, Sodom, Atheist), Reflections is extreme metal of the highest order and shows Ferium as having the potential of forging truly major horizons ahead whilst giving a rather breath-taking treat for the now.

http://www.feriumband.com/

9/10

RingMaster 07/04/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Dichotomy – Paradigms

band pic 1 (MAIN)

Turning the air into a whirling dervish of sonic antagonism and invigorating confrontation, Paradigms the debut album from Irish technical death metallers Dichotomy, is an introduction not to be taken lightly. The eight track tempest of skill and aggression instantly sets the Dublin quintet as one of the most formidable emerging predators within European metal. Veined by acidic melodic enterprise which leaves breath a rare commodity and superbly crafted intrusive riffing offering intensive but welcome scars the album is a scintillating piece of creative corrosion that marks the band as a dramatically promising and already accomplished force.

Formed in 2010 by guitarists Rats and Andy Kealy with the idea to merge the technicality of death metal with the groove and defined essences of other genres whilst feeding off the inspirations of bands such as Death, Necrophagist, Gojira, and Opeth, the band was soon making a strong impression in the Irish underground scene. With vocalist Kev O’Connor and drummer Dave Fay alongside the pair, Dichotomy was an immediate attraction and with a line-up soon completed by bassist Neil Coburn the five-piece was earning an intense reputation for their live performances and scintillating sound.  Recording their first release in the summer of 2012 at the esteemed Westland Studios in Dublin, Dichotomy is set to extend their success over the widest arena with the unleashing of their self-released beast of a record. As brutal and seductive as you could wish Paradigms is set to enslave the passions of legions of new followers one suspects, certainly leave them basking in its annihilatory wake.

The album opens with the brief instrumental Empyrean, the tender guitar led piece giving no hint of what is to follow in sound or Dichotomy Album Coverintensity. It is a nicely composed welcome but to be honest underwhelming, certainly in hindsight once The Sentient Oppressed opens its jaws of aural fascination and technical manipulation to sucks senses and thoughts into its heavy consuming heart. From the first seconds riffs are scrubbing the surface of the ear whilst mini grooves tease within the brewing wounds. Compounded by the hard fisted rhythms of Fay it is a startling trap eagerly devoured and explored by emotions. Into its textured depths with the vocals of O’Connor scowling with a squalling maelstrom of malevolence, the guitars of Rat and Kealy parade incisive flames of melodic venom and sonic toxicity to ignite further satisfaction whilst the Bass of Coburn prowls and adds greater shadow to the contagious blaze, though there are moments here and through the album where he sinks within the thick assault to be a presence rather than a strong flavour though admittedly making up for it when he is coaxed with clarity.

It is a staggering full start which as the album evolves its temptation only gets better. Both All-Seeing Eye and Polarity have emotions grinning broadly, the first expelling a torrent of vocal causticness over a deliciously niggling sonic guitar persuasion and the unbridled and exhaustive rhythmic barrage of Fay. Like its predecessor it is an immediate titanic lure before which defences crumble and hunger takes on predacious heights to match the intensity and creative greed of the song. The song mixes up a fluid unrelenting attack with mighty swipes at the senses brought by concrete riffs and steely beats crossed by the sabre like technical invention and flames of the guitars. It is a thunderous pinnacle swiftly matched by its successor. The song is a more deviously considered encounter, a rapacious pack like approach from the songwriting and sounds challenging the ear and beyond in comparison to the tsunami savagery of the previous track but not lacking in the artillery to flatten walls and doubts before letting the bewitching guitar play and imagination to scorch the debris.

Vocally O‘Connor deviates very little from his core delivery but where others may push limits and patience, here it works as another bestial string to the creative bow and ruinous sonic resourcefulness, the voracious No Catharsis the next destructive proof. Once more the guitar work is a tantalising almost bewildering furnace of pleasure and open ingenuity caged by the most vicious and explosive rhythmic avalanche of venomous skill and rapacity. Mere words cannot truly relay the potency and power of the song, or release come to that, but it powerfully confirms the earlier suggestion that the release just gets zealously better and more impressive, this song taking top honours on the album closely badgered by the likes of the primal Covenant of the Foresworn and the evocative instrumental Alea Iacta Est, a piece that unites beauty and a sonic beast for an enthralling and imagination lighting narrative.

The senses burning malefactor Of Strife Of Discord completes an exceptional and intoxication debut from Dichotomy. As savage as it is aesthetically wondrous, Paradigms simply declares its creators as one of the most exciting new antagonists to widely hit European metal this year.

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9/10

RingMaster 14/08/2013

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