The Monster Ones – We Are The Monsters

The Monster Ones

It is a couple of weeks short of when Spanish horror punks The Monster Ones first burst into our welcoming crypt two years ago with their impressive slice of danger, the I Wanna Be A Teenage Monster EP. The second release from the band it was a feisty and bruising slab of mausoleum rock ‘n’ roll with punk attitude and glam rock wantonness. It has been a seemingly long time for the next episode of their death soaked enterprise but the patience is tested no longer as their debut album has been uncaged to ravage ears and stir up passions. Twelve slices of horror bred contagion, We Are The Monsters is an unbridled web of sonic intrigue and blood drenched grooves spiked with an addiction forging toxin as potent and impressive as any unleashed so far this year.

Formed in 2008, the Palma de Mallorca band soon made a strong scar locally with their blend of punk, blues, and rockabilly infused with healthy doses of glam and hard rock. It is a sound which is recognisable in many ways but unique in just as many others. The release of the Transilvania Rock City EP in 2010 drew them good attention but it was I Wanna Be A Teenage Monster two years later which stirred up greater awareness and appetites for their emerging menace, the band becoming regulars on our Bone Orchard podcasts alone. It is easy to feel that the release of We Are The Monsters could be the anticipated trigger to a stronger spotlight on the band with its striking range of flavoursome and deathly stabs of prime rock ‘n’ roll. Time is always the unveiling of reality but with the deaf and dead possible exceptions, it is hard to imagine true rockers not losing their inhibitions over this scintillating rampage.

Led by the fiery tones of vocalist Cecile The Beast alongside the rapier riffs of guitarists Carpi Malone and V, as well as the thumping beats of drummer Maf, The Monster Ones go straight for the jugular from the first seconds, teasing, taunting and seducing with unbridled rapaciousness. Aided and abetted by bassist Elvis Lugosi throughout the encounter with occasional guest backing vocals from Alex Femenías, the band lays a bait of rhythms and acidic guitar around the ears to open up first track Monster Heroes. Soon into its stride a blues lilt soaks the melodic flames of the song whilst drums crisply jab and the bass prowls around the senses alongside more straightforward raw riffing. The vocals of Cecile are as potent as the sounds, her delivery powerful and inflammatory easily leading the appetite to a full engagement with the anthemic chorus. It is a more than solid introduction of heavy rock, nothing dramatically grabbing, that comes later, but fully enjoyable.

Once the throaty bass line courted by intimidating beats hits the ears as Alien Paradise appears, an even greater exciting outlook breaks The Monster Ones - We are the monsters - coverout. The twin attack has total slavery of thoughts and emotions by the time Cecile and soaring guitar swipes join the affray. Into its stride the track is an adventurous punk tempest with broadly swinging rhythms and raging guitar causticity bringing a mix of The Duel and The Creepshow to the rampancy. It is one of those encounters where feet and personal exploits are no longer yours to command, a criminally addictive rampage impossible to get enough of.

The very different Solo El Solo is very much the same, its sultry dramatic climate over the strolling landscape a magnetic scenery to immerse in whilst the tangy vocals explore a cinematic narrative. Part cowpunk, part rockabilly, and fully spaghetti western intrigue, the track shows further the variety to sound and album which has paraded its raucous charm already, an enticement given another spice by Swamp Thing’s Lover. This song strides purposefully with flexing rhythmic sinews and heavy riffing across thick textures and a consuming atmosphere, its open hooks barbed but respectful to the tempting intensity brewing across the intimidating premise.

Both songs leave throat and memory involved long after their departure, though they do have to contend with the quite brilliant pair of Radioactive Dog and Black Roller for that success. The first of the two rumbles and charges down the ears highway from the opening note, the psychobilly spice to the careering groove and spiteful grin to the antagonistic beats irresistible. Settling into its hungry predation, Cecile the temptress to its seductive malevolence aided by great ghoulish harmonies, the song unleashes lethal hooks and a magnificent groove straight out of the Buzzcocks repertoire to steal an even greater chunk of the passions. It is a colossal triumph swiftly matched by its successor, Black Roller a badgering treat with its own insidious groove and heart spearing irreverence. Unleashing biting punk ‘n’ roll with horror punk jaws, the predator is a barbarous dark hearted seducing with Cecille its dangerous Lilith.

Joker ignites another spasm of hunger next with its dirty rock ‘n’ roll voracity, discord grazing imagination, and virulently addicting lures before The Man who was The Death swaggers in, its rhythmic hips swerving around the equally wanton guitar adventure and ever riveting vocals. The bass offers a deeper malice in its tempting too which only inflames the appeal of the creative bruising and the epidemically forceful infection, a toxicity which is just as insatiable in Always Elm Street which features guest guitarist Tomeu Destructor. There is a definite Batman-esque lure to the core hook of the song but it only broadens the eager smile and pleasure provided.

The next song Rat returns to a wider heavy rock persuasion, guitars flaring up with scorching spirals of sonic invasiveness against refreshing riffs. Though it is an accomplished and skilful blaze, the track fails to reach the heights and reactions of its predecessors. It pleasingly pushes the variety of the release all the same and makes a fine appetiser for the groove infestation of Bloody Stones, a track which spits out cutting riffs, battering rhythms, and searing grooves like it is its last chance. A thoroughly compelling and incendiary incitement, the song has to make way for the closing predatory stalking of Black Suede Night, a final solicitous trap to lose the passions to.

We Are The Monsters shows that The Monster Ones has really grown as a band from sound and songwriting to their presence. They are a powerfully confident and inventive proposition now which gives horror punk and rock ‘n’ roll a new thrilling ‘villain’ to drool over.

http://themonsterones.com

http://themonsterones.bandcamp.com/album/we-are-the-monsters

10/10

RingMaster 27/03.214

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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FFR UK Reggae Punk Mondays 17th March 2014

17 March 2014

With its ever growing reputation and success, FFR UK’s REGGAE PUNK MONDAYS bring another unmissable night to the 12 BAR CLUB on March 17th. The fan acclaimed event presents the best underground punk and rock sounds that the Capital has to offer and this week mounts yet another irresistible offering.

segs ruts dc

segs ruts dc

Firstly your resident hosts, DJ SEGS and London punks THE DUEL, provide their usual unbridled passion to the night. Innovative impresario and a founder of punk legends The Ruts and Ruts DC, Segs Jennings once again entwines the evening with his constantly acclaimed and surprising DJ set playing the best inspirational sounds, whilst The Duel who regularly fire up the event with their uniquely adventurous and passionate music, promises to have an extra snarl this week as they celebrate the recent confirmation of their appearance at the Rebellion Festival for the ninth year running.

the duel use

the duel

Reggae Punk Mondays reputation for inviting the most inspirational special guests to play, adds yet another potent string to its bow as the night welcomes one of rocks finest underground artists, DAVE KUSWORTH. From his first band T.V. Eye in 1977, Dave has built a rigorously respected career though bands like The Hawks, The Jacobites with Nikki Sudden, and The Bounty Hunters. Always passionately faithful to his roots, Dave brings his very distinct flavour to an eagerly anticipating night.

dave kusworth

dave kusworth

dnny fury

Danny Fury

Adding to the thrills and spills will also be lead singer and songwriter of Tango Pirates, DANNY FURY and the irrepressible FREEDOM FACTION. Danny will for the first time ever be presenting an unplugged set, a proud exclusive for FFR UK whilst the old school bred Cambridge quartet will do what they do best; create musical havoc and ignite the passions.

freedom faction

freedom faction

Compared by Bart Barton as The Spirit oF Andy Warhol, FFR UK casts another must see presentation on London’s musical landscape, and for those elsewhere the whole night will be streamed live @ http://ffruk.com/ffrukmonday

The Ruts Dc First Unplugged Show in 37 Years!

David Wala Photgraphy

David Wala Photgraphy

10th February 2014 sees seminal punks RUTS DC, really going da capo with their first ever live acoustic show in 37 years!
This historic unplugged occasion will be held in the intimate surroundings of the legendary 12 Bar Club, Denmark Street in
the heart of London’s West End.
A fitting venue for this rhythm collision from true originals Segs and Dave Ruffy with Leigh Heggarty.
The event marks the re-launch of the award winning FFRUK’s Reggae-Punk Monday residency and entry to this fabulous
happening is only £3-00.


With support from London’s own nuclear nu-wavers THE DUEL and Cambridge’s FREEDOM FACTION, with the added bonus of Seg’s spinning the tunes from 8 till late, with your host Bart Barton as the spirit of Andy Warhol. The event is also
been streamed live on www.ffruk.com/ffrukmonday, so you can catch all of the action if for some inexplicable reason
you can’t attend and support your scene!

Ticket link for advance tickets:  http://www.wegottickets.com/event/256603

FLYER5

Steve Ignorant With Paranoid Visions – When…?

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It is hard to imagine any punk fan not being excited about the thought of Crass frontman Steve Ignorant and Irish punk legends Paranoid Visions raging together, and even harder to think they will not be blissfully satisfied by this striking union on When…?, their impressively magnetic album. The twelve track release is a thrilling encounter, a deep pool of rebellious anarcho punk and old school contempt fused into an antagonistic diversity bred of the now. The mouth-watering album album follows on from the acclaimed If Ignorance Is Bliss EP of earlier this year and powerfully realises the triumph forcibly hinted at upon the earlier three track provocation.

The seeds to the link-up between the band and Steve Ignorant can be said to have begun way back in 1979 when a 13 year old punk kid called Peter in Dublin received a reply to a letter he had written to Crass. It set a belief in the young lad that one day he would play with the vocalist of one of punk’s all-time major forces. That teenager, guitarist P.A.Y.E went on to form Paranoid Visions with vocalist Deko Dachau and the rest as they say is history, one still going from strength to strength for the band and their unique inventive sound. The If Ignorance Is Bliss EP brought that thirty year odd dream into reality whilst When…? simply places the alignment of greats into the list of punk’s finest moments.

The Overground Records released album opens with a mix of haunting and biting calls of the name of the title track. It instantly captures the imagination, especially once joined by the thumping terraces like anthemic rhythmic beckoning and short stabs of guitar grazing. The track is pure captivation from its opening seconds, the ever distinctive and delicious caustic tones of Deko igniting the passions as potently as the sounds. Add the in-the-face delivery of Steve Ignorant, the teasing caresses of Sarah Bellum and Aoife Destruction, as well as an inventive musical taunting, and the song strides forward as an immense and riveting start to the album. It alone breeds a hunger which greedily demands and ultimately receives across the rest of the release.

The following Join The Dots is rapping at the senses from its first breath, the rhythms of Paul Zapart nagging the ears whilst a sonic and voracious mix from the guitars of P.A.Y.E and Dan Sonyagrave snarls over the barracking bait. In full charge the song becomes a riot of vintage punk, the alternating and blended vocals of the main protagonists treating the ear to a welcome uncompromising bruising whilst the ladies add an infectiousness which is like Vice Squad and Dolly Mixtures does pop punk. It is a ridiculously addictive slice of punk ‘n’ roll which again leaves the passions flying and ready for the next confrontation which comes in the sizeable form of Brain-Dance. Once again the challenging rhythmic bait is skilful and contagious, the perfect hook into the equally incendiary groove and exciting vocal ear bashing from all quarters. Already When…? is like traversing the Alps, nothing but peaks and breath-taking times rampaging through the imagination and senses.

Lyrically as to be expected the album has no fear in taking swipes at all and sundry, the man at the top, you, me, all apathies, inequalities etc. No track pulls its punches whatever the canvas the narrative is sculpted upon, the virulently contagious United Left Annoyance and the acoustically carved Log On…Bog Off no exceptions. The first of the pair has one of those hooks which haunts thoughts and vacant moments with the toxicity always prevalent in the sounds of Paranoid Visions, its call a cousin to those conjured by Buzzcocks or any version of his band Spizz examined his invention under. Its successor it has to be said took time to convince, but all the time its smouldering almost deceptive sirenesque consumption of the imagination worked away within the slowly dawning victorious persuasion.

No Contrition brawls with and challenges thoughts and emotions next, the open causticity to sound and lyrical intent providing another healthy feast for appetite and passions to devour whilst basking in the continually impressive invention upon the album, whilst Charity Begins At Home with its opening sample a full on poke at Bono and charitable deceptions, is ingenious brilliance. Abrasive and seductive in a torrent of inventive and epidemically addictive enterprise, the track is the pinnacle of the release, the highest plateau in a parade of nothing but lofty suasions.

Both the UK Subs/Crisis tinted Changing Times and the brilliant Independence Day with a presence which is best described as early March Violets meets Crass meets The Pack, continue the wonderfully imposing and passions igniting stance of the album whilst the exceptional Sex Kills attempts to steal the whole show with its carnivorous riffs and bass predation alongside another pop punk infectiousness, well if pop was in the bands of The Duel and Penetration. The rich heights of the track is soon matched by Rock n Roll n Revolution, cantankerous beats and rapacious riffs fuelled by another blaze of insatiable invention and the staggeringly impression union of two muscularly creative forces.

Closing on ?….NEHW, an unbridled ferocious take on the opener, When…? is simply magnificent, a release which is exceptional at the first meeting and grows into one of the most potent, tantalising, and creative punk albums of the year. Outstanding…quite outstanding!

10/10

www.steveignorant.co.uk

www.paranoidvisions.weebly.com

RingMaster 12/11/2013

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In Evil Hour – The World Bleeds Out

pic by Helen Templeton Photography

pic by Helen Templeton Photography

A snarling insatiably commanding beast of a release, The World Bleeds Out the debut album from UK punks In Evil Hour is a sensational blistering of senses and thoughts from a band who know how to craft virulently contagious and potently provocative songs. A blaze of essential fresh punk rock with a lyrical bite which takes no prisoners within incisive swipes upon politics, society, and the apathy and ignorance that pervades modern culture, the ten track release leaves a fully exposed and hunger driven passion in its wake, whilst In Evil Hour steps forward as another irresistible voice declaring that UK punk rock is again leading the world.

Formed in 2003, the quartet from Darlington takes seeds out of inspirations from the likes of AFI, Amen, Black Flag, The Stooges, Bad Brains, NOFX, Bad Religion, Sick of it All, and Rise Against to name a few, into their own flavoursome hardcore punk. It is a sound which is not unafraid to load itself with infection soaked hooks and riffs but as an additive to tempt rather than undermine the sinew lined directly evocative heavy punk attack they conjure. Released through STP Records, The World Bleeds Out is a savage yet anthemic confrontation which allows hope and temptation to be as rife and alluring as the aggressive and spiteful creative toxicity which stirs up and incites the imagination.

Opener Divide And Conquer stands eye to eye with the listener as the rasping growl of Alice confronts the ears skirted by crisp and a0645899867_2antagonistic rhythms and swiping raw riffs. The track is soon charging for the jugular of the senses with rabid beats from Mike whipping the song on whilst bassist Mark and guitarist Gareth create a vitriolic and persuasive mesh of caustic might. With anthemic vocals in league with an equally demanding instigator in the chorus, the song is an outstanding and powerful entrance into the album.

     Far From Home takes up the fury next with a splattering of rebellious beats sparking the rest of the song into an initial rage against the senses. It is a great start but one which is left behind once the song settles into an incisive stomp of rumbling rhythms ridden by the continuing to impress, with greater strength as each song steps forward, vocals of Alice. There is a Wendy O Williams essence to her delivery which only enhances the lyrical expression and song attack overall, something which the music seems to understand and find inspiration from, this track gaining ever increasing intensity and rapaciousness with every syllable expelled with brawling strength.

Both As Seas Rise and Where You’re Left continue the immense presence of the album if not quite to the earlier heights set, the first creating a sonic scrap with the ear in which there is only one winner, especially with the deliciously catchy swing and barbed melodic enticement through the guitar skills and vocal harmonies and calls. Its successor is a scorching flame of guitar scalding and rhythmic bashing again steered impressively and skilfully by the vocals singular and as a riotous union.

The lethal swipe of animosity that is Little Death is a fifty five second storm of magnetic viciousness, a hardcore blitz which thrills from its first uncompromising breath through to its last. It moves over for the mutually outstanding Help Me Out, an acidic spiral of heavy rock guitar teasing and taunting whilst the rest of the band adds their particular predacious craft and incendiary invention. A bruising rock n’ roll rampage which leaves the passions aflame with greedy appetite it provides one more stunning moment amongst a great many on the release.

The instantly compelling bass lure to The Terminal brings in another exceedingly agreeable altercation, the band arguably more restrained in its proposition though no less direct and imposing lyrically and in presentation. The bass continues to steal the show on the track, its finest and most potent moment on the album where at times it feels like it is given a back seat place in the production, whilst as now expected Alice draws attention with her striking presence which to be fair often puts most other aspects in the shade.

The excellent title track grazes up the senses and passions with its own individual exciting and imaginative spat whilst the brilliant I Lost Years, where bass and guitar find another plateau to tease a new rapture out with their impossibly addictive rough charms. A Dead Kennedys like hook steers the passions whilst the surrounding body of the song is a mix of Angelic Upstarts/UK Subs and Penetration/AFI. It is a terrific creative and raucous adventure cementing the depth and quality of band and album.

With Murder Murder closing up The World Bleeds Out with one final tempest of contagion drenched excellence, a blend of Bad Religion and The Duel coming to mind as it steals another wave of ardour from the emotions, In Evil Hour emerge as one of the most impressive emerging forces in punk rock, and not just in the UK. A classic album from an extremely impressive band, not much left to say.

http://inevilhour.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/InEvilHour

10/10

RingMaster 17/09/2013

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Obsessive Compulsive – Seculo Seculorum

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There has been a good buzz about Seculo Seculorum, the second album from UK punksters Obsessive Compulsive, since its release a couple of months ago but now having allowed its thrilling exploits to tease and excite our senses the record far outweighs the plenty of good responses draped upon it so far. It is an outstanding release, a collection of songs that stand toe to toe with the ears intimidating and coaxing them and all beyond into its riotous and provocative charge. Rife with feisty riffs, probing rhythms, and more hooks than to be found in an angling store, as well as the excellent spitefully seductive tones of vocalist Kelii, the album is an irrepressible temptation declaring the rock and punk fused presence of the band as one of the most exciting in the UK.

The Manchester quartet first drew attention with a couple of EPs but fired up a stronger awareness with debut album Dreams of Death and the Death of Dreams in 2010. Released on their own Vociferous Records and produced by Russ Russell (The Wildhearts/Evile/Napalm Death), the album triggered strong and eager responses as well as a wealth of underground media acclaim. Renowned for their live performances, which has seen the band share stages with the likes of Goldblade, GBH, Anthrax, The Damned Things, KMFDM, Wolfsbane, and The Japanese Voyeurs as well as igniting festivals such as Bloodstock, Hard Rock Hell, and Download Festival, Obsessive Compulsive are now poised to raise their stature to a much loftier level with the James Loughrey (Skindred/Bjork/Page & Plant) recorded Seculo Seculorum (meaning ‘forever and ever’).

As immediately evident on the album, Obsessive Compulsive reaps the finest essences of punk, alternative rock, and a multi-flavoured OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERArock rawness which combines to create a confrontation which leaves you breathless and gripped by a hunger for more. Imagine The Distillers and The Duel tied down and milked for their antagonistic charms whilst Karn8 stands astride adding their wantonness and you get a sniff of what the album offers. There is also a melodic fire and bite which harkens back to the late seventies with both The Photos and Penetration coming to mind at times. The moment opener Sick Sick Sick bursts into a blaze of hypnotic riffs laced with a contagious groove and commanding rhythms, there is a cage around the passions sparking them into life especially as Kelii brawls into the ear with sexy intimidation. There is a sense of US rockers Mongrel about the song too when it flares up in pissed off crescendos around its virulent infectious call. It is a scintillating start that lingers around for a long time inside though it is soon matched by the brilliant Regurgitate.

The second song on the album initiates the strongest lure just by the instant firm stroking of guitar and vocals, the combination a temptation which seems to know there is no escaping its toxicity. Into its stride once again the suasion is immense and impossible to resist, the roguish roam of the riffs framed by crisp beats seemingly seeded in old school punk rock whilst Kelii provides a Pauline Murray like snarl and melodic craft to her delivery. It is another instant pinnacle which alongside its predecessor puts the rest of the album under pressure.

Both the inventively unpredictable Stamp Your Own Path and the smouldering Jardim Gramacho put up massively satisfying efforts to grip the same heights whilst Nail In My Coffin stands shoulder to shoulder with the openers with its scything riffs and barracking rhythms egged on by the continuing to impress vocals. The track engages full thrusters in the energetic chorus to rampage as melodic flames hang on to its wind, though they are later allowed to settle and bewitch the listener with skilled and inventive narratives either side of the storm. The track again shows the variety in sound and imagination already on the album, the diversity brought with invention and an array of ingenious barbs which are never too much or allowed to get too complicated.

Float idles up next with bass and deep toned guitar edging the sultry tones of Kelii as the track unveils a slightly chilling and menacing beauty to its expansive breath, keys bringing an enveloping atmosphere which almost haunts the ear whilst shards of hot guitar coals light the skies. Drawing up its sinews and malevolent passion the song builds into a rapacious fire before settling down again into the initial smoulder. It is another slice of brilliance helping to propel the album into classic areas, the evidence of that status cemented further by the twin glories of Soul Sucker and Things Clean And Unclean, the first very much a Karn8 type inducement with elements of Hole and Hitchcock Blonde to it and its successor a gritty slice of dirty punk with L7 whispers to its stunning suasion, the steely bass bait a greedy temptress. It should be noted though for all the references mentioned the Obsessive Compulsive sound is still as distinct as you would hope.

After the metallically honed triumph Fight Or Flight the album unleashes its finest moment in the punk fury of No Logo. The track is pure venom and belligerence, a blistering X-Ray Spex like piece of contentious savagery which squalls and scowls with no mercy shown or considered. It is a bruising fight which accentuates the beauty of closing song Swallow The Sound all the more, the song a compelling rock ballad with a melodic heat that frames the vocals perfectly.

Obsessive Compulsive is a band which leaves only the richest appetite and urgency for their creativity in play, and Seculo Seculorum an album which seriously threatens the best UK rock album claims for the year. A must listen release.

http://www.obsessivecompulsiveband.com/

9/10

RingMaster 23/08/2013

 

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U.K. Subs: XXIV

Groupshot 3-2 Lo-res

    Over the past few years fans, websites, reviewers, and punk itself has eagerly and rightly so declared that the genre in the UK is in vibrant, strong, and good hands with the likes of The Duel, Dirt Box Disco, and Crashed Out to name just three, releasing outstanding albums and delivering riotous live performances, but too often the bands which started it all escape mention. Many of the original bands have continued to be a major presence or have returned to re-carve their name but equally many are just reliving old glories without forging new sounds and explorations for themselves. UK Subs is a band which has never rested on its laurels always creating new and dynamic sounds to varying success. With new album XXIV though, the band quite simply grips the reins of British punk tighter with a release which is quite sensational and easily an equal and fresh inspiration for all emerging young bucks.

Now well into their fifth decade, the band has never sounded better or hit harder. Arguably the early triumphant days when band and the Charlie Harper/ Nicky Garratt penned classic releases left punk rock fans delirious in their anthemic belligerent might be a plateau too far now but XXIV certainly challenges and inspires a rethink of those thoughts with its bumper brawl of impressive tracks and hungry energy. Continuing the mission to release one album for every letter of the alphabet, UK Subs have followed up the acclaimed Work In Progress with an album equally powerful and even more inventive. Released like its predecessor on Captain Oi!, XXIV is a bumper package of songs and quality, the album containing fourteen prime cuts of feisty rock n roll accompanied by another twelve stirring acoustic tracks. It is an outstanding release from a band which others can still learn from and be inspired by.

The album hits hard and impressively right from the start with the exhausting storm that is Implosion 77. The track is a fire of punk4408024 metal with thick sinewy riffs and effected vocal scowls laying waste on the damaged caused by the thumping rhythms of Jamie Oliver. The track is prime Subs sculpted with an enterprise which keeps the band ahead of the rest, the step into a heated atmosphere of evocative sonic caresses and melodic elegance veined by grasping whispers and an addict forming hook which would have the Dead Kennedys grinning, and not forgetting the delicious strings graced ending, pure instinctive pleasure.

The following blues provocation Coalition Government Blues is again instant joy, the harmonica flames from Harper a beacon for the emotions alongside the direct lyrical address and musical stomp. As Speed next rampages through the ear the album already is loud in its diverse musical intent, the track a hardcore courting metallic bruise of rock n roll which uses abrasion and infection as a dual irresistible invitation for the heart to join its mission.

Enlisting the already persuaded passions to an even more intense ardour and involvement both Rabid and Monkeys snarl and ravage with devious skill and anthemic flair, the first of the two a tempest of dirty rock n roll which encompasses various shades of punk rock to thrill and gets the blood racing faster around not only the ear but the whole body. It is a masterful confrontation with the guitar of Jet rifling the senses with boisterous devilment. The second of the pair brings more restraint to its gait though it ensures its force and antagonism is in full flow and impossible to hide from.

Through the likes of Black Power Salute with its metal forged riffs and compelling bass lines from Alvin Gibbs, the excellent Las Vegas Wedding which replicates the addictive lure of a Flogging Molly with its own unique melodic wantonness and contagious hooks, and the darker tones of the irresistible Stare at the Sun, the album leaves emotions boiling over in rapture and maybe surprise. UK Subs has never truly disappointed but arguably have never been this adventurous and eager to incorporate so many extra spices and sounds to their formidable invention, and it is an impressively rewarding result for all.

XXIV never drops a beat or level right through to its finish but does save its further highest pinnacles for its closing straight through the Bo Diddley does punk romp of Wreckin Ball and the closing victory Momento Mori, a ball-busting fury of merciless beats, uncompromising basslines, and corrupting riffs driven by incendiary vocal harmonies. It makes the perfect end to a magnificent album, though it does not end there as the acoustic tracks step forward to offer their impressive presences. The songs show the immense and rounded songwriting and craft of the band with more clarity than the riots before and it is another pleasing if unexpected treat on the album. Again each track is worthy of mention but for briefness personal stand-out songs come in the compelling shapes of Angel Of Eighth Avenue, a cover of an Ian Hunter penned song, Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind, the sizzling Souls From Hell, and The Outsider.

There is not much more you can say about UK Subs, their place in musical history is set in stone and continuing to build whilst as XXIV shows there is more than just life and bite left in the old dog.

http://uksubstimeandmatter.net/

http://www.uksubs.co.uk

9/10

RingMaster 12/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Twinkle and The Sluts: Self Titled EP

    Band

    Having had the pleasure of reviewing their previous Sluttier Than Thou EP and playing well received tracks on the Audioburger.com radio shows, it was no surprise that there was a tingle of excitement when UK punk rockers Twinkle and The Sluts recently released its self-titled successor. As the first EP, the release is a DIY treat of enterprise and attitude from the band which like the sounds inside, takes emotions back to the refreshing early days of punk.  Consisting of five stomping tracks the new release is blessed by and suffers from the same essences as their previous record and is equally as pleasing and rewarding.

Musically the band have not exactly moved forward but then with a sound which is aural contagion whilst chewing on the senses it is hardly worth mentioning. Production  like with the first EP does throw up issues from their DIY stance, making some moments feel bare and starkly raw when a little polish is needed but again back in the late seventies when this was the norm as bands broke free, we loved it. Again the collection of songs shouts out the potential of the band ahead whilst bringing a greatly satisfying riot in the now to engage in. Twinkle and The Sluts are one of the more impressive emerging rock bands in the UK, their blend of sounds which treat like a mix of X-Ray Spex, Penetration, Distillers, L7,and Juliette and The Licks, bringing them up to the side of the likes of The Bambi Killers and The Duel.

The release opens with the snappy beats and snarling bass of Renegade, its prowling predatory glancing speared by the feisty sonic381338_508381209191309_1661638130_n gazes of guitarist Alex and antagonistic vocals of Twinkle. The song never explodes into an expected fury but switches the addictive teasing with fuller bruising crescendos leading to and around the chorus. The beats of Curlz are hypnotic as they frame and drive the song whilst bassist Ash probes and snaps at the ear with simple but rich basslines, it all combining for a tasty opening to the EP. We would be lying if we denied feeling a little short changed by the production, expecting and wanting the song to bitch slap the senses at some point but being as over demanding as ever, the song still delivers big time to our satisfaction.

Drag Me To Hell follows and sets itself up as one of the best moments on the release. It is a dirty little gem of a track with a knowing swagger and Ramones like innocence which grabs the ear from its first grooved second to its last middle finger fuelled note. It is probably one of those songs which will find a different reception with different people, its repetition and corrosive cymbal smashes not for everyone but with its infectious breath and effect teased vocals makes for a compelling and pleasing encounter.

Things drop to a slow stalking with Sleaze, its rock gait and well thought out layers of instrumentation quite irresistible. Like the other songs it shows off the imagination in the songwriting and individual skills nicely giving evidence that the band has more in their locker than just punk and uncomplicated rock n roll. The track nicely sets one up to a song which was the highlight of the last EP and receives a reworking this time around. Narcissism is an exceptional song, a track which ticks all the boxes and sends limbs and passions into full frenzy. It has to be said though that the new version does not match the original which is surprising and disappointing, though it still stands as an impressive and addictive joy. It is hard to say what is missing, but there is certainly a lack of the bite and intensity which came with the Sluttier Than Thou original.

The release is completed by the excellent Russian Roulette, a song which has a Siouxsie and the Banshees meets Hole feel about it. It shuffles up pace and intensity for a thrilling incursion upon the ear with expertise and with its smart hooks and skilled melodic enticements takes top honours of the release.

The Twinkle and The Sluts EP is a great piece of combat to stand toe to toe with, of course the band wins but it is great fun succumbing to their uncompromising mischief. Hopefully someone somewhere will let them loose in a full studio without trying to quell their instinctive punk independence and attitude, then watch out.

www.facebook.com/twinkleandthesluts

RingMaster 30/11/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Duel – Soundtrack To The End Of The World (The Zak Splash Story)

Last year London punk band The Duel set the pulse rate racing with their impressive feast of nostalgic yet completely fresh sounds on the album All Aboard The Crazy Train. Now they return with an adventurous and intriguing release Soundtrack To The End Of The World (The Zak Splash Story), an album no less impressive or captivating. Admittedly it does not have the more instant engagement which marked the previous release, its songs like old friends with a modern outlook, but the new album is arguably a deeper and more expansive creature. It takes its time to seduce and charm the senses, its sounds at times surprising and ideas refreshingly inventive, but the end result is the same, the captivation of the heart with the fullest pleasure given along the way.

Since its beginning in 2001 when vocalist Tara Rez and keyboardist / bassist Andy Theirum linked up, The Duel has gone from strength to strength. From its debut gig supporting the Dead Kennedys, through the supporting of the likes of Buzzcocks, The Vibrators, Vice Squad, Peter Hook, UK Subs, The Slits, Sham 69, and Angelic Upstarts, festival appearances and across its albums Let’s Finish What We Started and Childish Behavior, 2007 and 2009 respectively,plus of course All Aboard The Crazy Train, the band has reaped and incited enthused acclaim and a growing loyal fan base. The new release arguably will have many stepping back a little as its sounds sink in fully but it is imaginable that many will not be fully enamoured by it.

The track simply called Intro immediately lights up the senses, a fiery instrumental with a sharp melodic enterprise and steely attitude which is a delicious treat for the ear. Sounding like a cross between the instrumentals Rondo (The Midgets Revenge) by The Dickies and the Buzzcocks track Late For The Train, the piece is an absorbing and infectious companion and sets one up eagerly for the following song Invincible.

With guitars flashing their sonic sparks and a heavy bass swaying in between, the song lifts off with the vocals of Rez, her tones as pleasing and compelling as ever. The production means the strokes of guitarist Thanos Oscar Pap dominate the sound of the track though not to any real detriment. The vocals and bass of Chris McDougall, as well as the keys of Thierum and drums of Pumpy, are meshed together to create a grazing intensity yet still hold their clarity. It takes a second play to understand how it works but it does, the slightly bruising energy of the song leading the ultimately electric charge.

Less Everyday is the first song to venture away from expectations in sound, whereas its predecessor was a punk cored gem this song has a more teasing new wave caress to its still bristling breath. There is a resonance which appears throughout the album to the vocal sound of Rez offering a warm and mesmeric flavouring. To be honest one did not expect to say this but there is a definite Altered Images feel to this song and other moments later on in the album. It is a great aspect to the sound though, the glowing pop charms aligning easily and skillfully with the bristling attitude driven heart of the band.

The magnetic Fake Like You has the same gait to its swagger whilst sitting between the two, You Can Do It is a rock n roll stroll which flares with tight melodies and belligerence. As these and subsequent songs light up the senses, and the slight surprise at the evolution of sound from the band ebbs away, the pleasure only goes deeper. Songs like the excellent Love Me Do, bringing a brew of Penetration and Animal Alpha to its midst, and the slightly abrasive and raw Splash On You featuring Max Splodge (Splodgenessabounds), ensure the treats keep coming, whilst the closing gem of When The Fire Goes Out is sonic radiance. It burns but soothes the wounds with crafted rays of melodic warmth musically and vocally. Infectious and vibrant with coaxing whispers upon the ear, the track is a delicious smile of post punk invention and pop punk grace.

Going back to the beginning of the album and it is not the track Intro; it opens with Zak Splash Story. A forty minute tale of the fictitious Zak Splash narrated by Max Splodge, the track merges all the songs on the album into the narrative proving the songs work as part of dare one say a ‘punk opera’ or individually, though one suspects the latter is how the majority of eager listens will be made.

Soundtrack To The End Of The World is a credible piece of imagination with its tracks nothing less than satisfying and enthralling. The Duel has been to the fore of UK punk for the past few years and shows no signs of leaving their position to anyone else as the album proves.

https://www.facebook.com/thedueluk

RingMaster 28/09/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Bambi Killers: The Invisible EP

Want to meet the best punk rock band in the UK? A big claim to be laid at the feet of a band for sure but using their debut EP The Invisible as evidence, that is what Welsh band The Bambi Killers is at this point in time. With the wicked wantonness of Karn8, the sexy attitude of The Objex, the mischief of Dirt Box Disco, and the snarl of The Duel and L7, the quartet from Swansea have it all to go down in punk history. Big swinging riffs, raw energy, and vocals to send tingles where tingles have no right to be, The Bambi Killers is a riot in every sense and pleasure.

The band consists of Cluffy on vocals and rhythm guitar, guitarist Pumba and bassist Muppet with both providing backing vocals, and Bom on drums. Together they are a vibrant and action packed unit which leave nothing in the locker in their songs and we are reliably informed neither in their riotous live shows. They have the heart and essence which made the likes of Vice Squad, X-Ray Spex, Ruts, and The Adicts so important back in the day but fire it up with rock n roll which is instinctive and driven by the energy of today. Combined it makes for, certainly in the case of The Invisible EP, sounds which ignite all the passions and feed all the insatiable needs of any rock heart.

The release opens with the song of the year, Don’t Be Invisible. A confrontational taunt to the apathy of gig attendees and the no risk lone easy life attitude of people as a whole, the song is simply glorious. The song immediately erupts in suggestive riffs and growling bass lines whilst Cluffy challenges with word and intent.  Persistent and combative without delving into violence the track is a prowling devil which leaves nothing in doubt and provokes a reaction in all. The voice of Cluffy is a sultry mix of Dominique Lenore Persi (Stolen Babies) and Agnete Kjølsrud (Animal Alpha, Djerv) and sits alongside Kirst of Karn8 as the sexiest voice in UK rock. The ironic thing about the track is that those it is poking a finger at will be caught up in and aiding its anthemic might, safely from their bedrooms no doubt.

The following Get Up Get Out Get Off slams into the ear with immediate energy and enthusiasm. A more directly driven track it is a storm of feisty riffs and jabbing rhythms speared by a catchy addictive chorus and scorched guitar strikes. Like many punk classics it is simple and to the point whilst igniting the deepest satisfaction. Less intricate and varied as its predecessor, the song shows that The Bambi Killers can deliver rock n roll in any form with accomplishment and passion.

The Weight Of The Morning swaggers up next with attitude to the fore and forceful sounds to back it up. Like Spinnerette meeting Bikini Kill, the song crawls all over the senses like a lustful teenager though with more restraint than they can ever find. With an almost hypnotic lure the track is a feast of thumping beats and ear stripping riffs but when it drifts into a slow seductive aside it triggers ferocious fires and it has to be said the soaring sounds of Cluffy at this point brings a sign not only to the lips.

Hmmm moving on….. the release is completed by the outstanding Lights Out to complete a four point slab of excellence. With the urgency and melodic flavouring of early Clash or Vibrators, the song is another sing-a-long treat of style and skilled energy, and like its partners in crime another which one cannot resist desecrating with their own voice.

The Invisible EP is stunning and its creators a band set to turn UK punk rock, if not further afield, on its head. Watch out world The Bambi Killers are coming to get you.

http://thebambikillers.com/

RingMaster 04/09/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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