Rainium – Sounds Of Berlin

Having thoroughly enjoyed their new single, the offer from Rainium themselves to check out their debut album was easy to take up. So with thanks and help to guitarists Rainer Krenzke and Jay Parmar we did just that and discovered in Sounds Of Berlin another of this year’s pleasures.

Rainium is an Anglo/German endeavour created by Krenzke in 2017. With a swift link up with vocalist Michael Voss (Mad Max, Casanovo, ex-Bonfire), the emerging project was soon the host of new songs, demos, and a line-up subsequently completed by bassist Marco Tardanico (ELA) and British lead guitarist Jay Parmar (Eden’s Curse, Iron Knights, The Inner Road). Musically, Rainium weave a sound bedded in a fusion of classic and hard rock and alive with individual craft. As that first single and its title track revealed, the album revels in a blend of familiar and wholly fresh ingredients though across a dozen tracks Sounds Of Berlin quickly and firmly unveils a far richer adventure of sound and enterprise.

The brief attention luring invitation of ET (Et Toujours) leads eagerly into the waiting arms of Two Friends which welcomes ears with big swinging beats amidst rapacious threads of guitar. Quickly it opens up a web of melodic threads and vocal incitement, both as persuasive on ears and body as the continuingly infectious rhythms. Edging on the side of snarling, riffs drive the song’s catchy stroll whilst the melodic prowess of Krenzke aligns with Parmar’s skilled intricacies and invention until it all rousingly unites with the anthemic incitement of the band’s combined vocals.

It is a potent start to the album which the band’s current single wraps itself as it shares its own individual enticement. From the enclosed theatre of the subways, Sounds Of Berlin hits its catchy stride with a boisterous appetite, setting up classic rock nurtured riffs and hooks in a catchy and tempting embrace at the same time. Tardanico’s bass throbs magnetically under the song’s skin as Parmar’s stylish weave wraps a body teasing with almost industrial hued flavours at times though its chorus is pure eighties rock natured.

In The Dead Of Winter strides in next, confident in its temptation and indeed it takes mere seconds to get under the skin as rhythms pounce and vocals hook. It is a wicked start which softens a touch as its equally contagious chorus shares keen energy, the cycle just as virulent the second time around. With Parmar again enthralling in his craft and enterprise, the track lays down a strong best track claim before Farewell slows things a little but adds greater intensity and emotion in its metal infused canter. Melodically haunting as drama lines every moment entangled in the emotive intimation of the guitars, the song makes for one of the album’s most absorbing moments.

Another big highlight of the release comes with Right Here Right Now, a song which starts with almost predatory intent as its initial riffs strike but soon simply seduces attention as the instantly captivating tones of Ilo Schnittchen (Isle Of Rock) nestle in the melodic embrace of the song. With rousing eruptions in the heart of the temptation, the track proved increasingly irresistible and firmly one of our favourite moments.

Both Just The One with its open nineties rock seeding and the wild almost salacious antics and suggestiveness of Gypsy had the body bouncing if neither could quite rival the success of its predecessor while Wake Up stakes its own claim on one of the album’s major moments with its prowling intrigue and drama. From the compelling throaty lures of Tardanico’s bass to the subsequent almost new wave nurtured melodic captivation which wraps the imagination, the song enthralled and embroiled us in its gentle swing.

With Parmar’s steel strings as poetic as ever, it is a fine close to the collection of seriously engaging and forcibly memorable songs though Sounds Of Berlin still has the pleasure of three bonus tracks to please ears with. The first is another version of Right Here Right Now which sees Schnittchen and Voss in more of a duet across its highly magnetic body, its treat followed by an instrumental demo of In The Dead Of Winter and a demo take of Just The One.

From the moment an idea, which was to become Rainium, escaped Krenzke’s imagination it has been three years of inspiration, passion, and endeavour from all members, traits shaping and fuelling a release we can only suggest needs a lusty checking out.

Sounds Of Berlin is available now.

 http://rainium.com   https://www.facebook.com/RainiumBand   https://twitter.com/jayparmarguitar

Pete RingMaster 05/12/2019

Copyright RingMasterReview: MyFreeCopyright

Coalition – Bridge Across Time

cover_RingMasterReview

Coming almost five years after the band’s last album, British progressive rockers Coalition release Bridge Across Time, an encounter which takes ears and imagination on a colourful creative journey. Over nine melodically and lyrically suggestive tracks, the album engages on every level, sweeping the listener up in accomplished and stylish endeavours sure to please all prog rock favouring appetites.

Since the release of In Search of Forever as 2012 opened its eyes, the 2010 formed, Reading hailing Coalition has seen its line-up change around the constant presence and songwriting of multi-instrumentalist Steve Gresswell, the man also behind the just as enthralling project The Inner Road. A long time in the making, Bridge Across Time sees guitarist Colin Tench of BunChakeze/Corvus Stone and vocalist/lyricist Blake Carpenter from The Minstrel’s Ghost/Corvus Stone alongside Gresswell, both adding their own distinctive presence and talent to a release showing Coalition at a whole new level of songwriting and adventure.

Steve Gresswell

Steve Gresswell

With Gresswell handling keyboards, drums, and bass guitar, Bridge Across Time swiftly captures the imagination through opener Across the Sea. From the inviting sound of a coastal scene, a picture of melodic beauty courtesy of Tench quickly involves the imagination with darker rhythms in close attention as the warm tones of Carpenter caress the senses. Straight away the gentle climate and welcoming air of the song seduces; its subsequent catchy stroll just as persuasive as Tench’s captivating melodies and craft wrap around it. It is a potency matched in Gresswell’s keys, their presence floating across the picturesque landscape with the emotive heart of the song portrayed by the fine vocals. Jazzier elements add to the enjoyable aural scenery though the operatic background cries do less for the appetite.

It is a potent start to the album which only blossoms further as Fantasy Island escapes the imagination of the trio. For no apparent reason thoughts of a Wicker Man solitude and secrecy is sparked by the opening setting of school children within another pastoral setting, though soon lost as keys and guitar weave an intimate yet broad canvas of sound and suggestion. A festival of riveting hooks and infectious ideas, whether brief or lingering, the track hits the spot in no time, Carpenter’s voice a thought engaging narrator to it all. Across its eight minutes, there is a plethora of things going on which eventually unveil themselves across further listens, something applying to the whole of the release, with the wonderful almost mischievous flames of sax a treat which instantly excites, as too the rolling bouts of piano and floral strings.

From its initial colder climate, the following Labyrinth becomes a festival of folkish hues and catchy revelry, again a more insular atmosphere to the song’s story coming over; a village bound character accompanying its sound as emotive outpourings line words and voice. That operatic texture is repeated again and makes a better fit if still not for personal tastes but only adds to the eventful elements and character of the magnetic track before Land of Dreams serenades with its simple but so potent melodies and Carpenter’s intimate presence within rising orchestral breezes. Bewitching and increasingly powerful with every outing, the track keeps the album in command of attention with sublime ease especially as its livelier side takes care of a physical involvement.

Through the melancholic yet vivacious Lost Soul and the Celtic spiced River Song, the track more with an undercurrent of that flavouring than openly wearing its charm, Bridge Across Time invites greedier attention from ears and imagination, that even though neither quite matches up to their predecessors. This alone shows the strength and quality of the album, a potency more than reinforced by The Light with its flirtatiously bubbly keys and evocative melodies and Valley of Shadows where wistful but bold melodies join the poetic enticement of brass and strings.

Completed by the worldly and epically compelling exploits of The Watcher, a final major highlight, Bridge Across Time is a progressive treat to embrace and take your time with, the rewards a continuous offering. Its tracks are certainly lengthy but no track feels anywhere near its distance and only holds ears and focus tight throughout to defuse any prior objections from a punk bred appetite.

Coalition is back and revelling in the imagination of three rather talented and technically adventurous musicians.

Bridge Across Time is out now and available @ https://coalitionprog.bandcamp.com/album/bridge-across-time

https://www.facebook.com/CoalitionProg/

Pete RingMaster 21/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Hedfuzy – Self-Titled

Catching up on another release appearing towards the rear of 2015, we offer up the self-titled album from Hedfuzy as a proposition to seriously consider investigating, especially if progressive rock gets the juices flowing.

Hedfuzy is the solo project of Irish multi-instrumentalist Pat Byrne and its debut album a captivating progressive adventure of melody thick and magnetically tenacious rock ‘n’ roll with a rousing contagion to it. The musical history of the Limerick musician includes touring at the age of 17 with Celtic Fusion, followed by experience building exploits touring and recording with bands such as rockers Kraven and reggae outfit Jeffonesta as well as playing bass on some of Delorean Suite’s current release Two Lives. Now Byrne is ready to ignite attention and ears with his own solo proposal, recruiting additional talent from Shardborne’s Ben Wanders, Delorean Suite keyboardist Graham Conway, guitarist Graham Keane of The Vicious Head Society, and guitarists Mike Moriarty and Cameron Allen to bring his seriously engaging songs to life.

Mixed and mastered by Chris Collier (Prong, Lynch Mob, KXM), the Byrne produced album opens with Sing which quickly coaxes ears with an enticing lure of guitar. Settling into an energetic stroll as Byrne’s potent vocals sit invitingly upon his blend of melody fuelled guitar and keys, the song soon begins to swing with a gripping catchiness aligned to a darker shade of similarly lively and eager bass led rhythms. With eighties seeded air reminding nostalgically of Modern English and currently David J Caron veined by fiery progressive enterprise, the track is a rousing start to the album quickly backed by the muscular persuasion of Snakes. Melancholic keys offer the first suggestive caress, Byrne’s vocals swiftly adding to the alluring start and in turn followed by a thicker smothering of riffs and rhythmic theatre. It is a potent collusion of textures which again has infectiousness running through it as heavier and darker shadows envelop the senses.

Hedfuzy - Self-Titled_RingMaster ReviewThe creative and physical skills of the artist persistently ignites ears in the song and album but always without offering any indulgence to temper their strength or the organic creativity impresses in the likes of How To Tear Your World From My Head. As the third song begins to flows through ears, initially bass pulses the lone dark protagonist in a misty glaze of harmonic and melodic tempting, things quickly come to boil as rugged rhythms and gravelly riffs collude with wistful keys, provocative guitar, and jazzy bass. The result is an eventful and at times volatile landscape of stirring invention and compelling craft keeping the imagination as busy as ears whilst pushing the already impressing stature of the album to new heights.

Mine brightly shimmers with melodic and vocal expression next, it an alluring serenade of melodic rock with the flavoursome essence of UK band The Inner Road to it as it settles enjoyable between the more raucous and dynamic exploits of the previous roar and The Death which follows. Not as dark as expected, the new track is another beacon of resourceful composing and boisterous musicianship lined with a craft and imagination which has body and emotions eagerly engaged.

The emotive croon of When I Come Back Down is open evidence of that core prowess in songwriting and emotion, and diversity as with This Broken Throne, a grouchy but again wholly virulent roar of aggressive rhythms and sonic adventure laced with the impressing vocal tones of Byrne. A thrilling and fluid mix of Squidhead like cantankerous metal soaked in a warmly reflective exploration of melody and voice, the track is as absorbing as it is anthemic before a mellower proposition in Name comes in. With winy melodies and atmospheric drama within again an intensive proposal of bass and rhythmic confrontation, the song carries a touch of Johnny Wore Black to it, captivating and stirring the senses from start to finish before leaving the album’s outstanding title track to bring things to a ferociously dynamic close. The instrumental is glorious, a brawling seducing collage of sound and textures woven into an anthemically fiery and exhaustingly exhilarating tempest as virulently incendiary as it is dramatically provocative.

Hedfuzy is an album to light up any day and the band a project which, even with Byrne seemingly perpetually in demand, the man soon appearing on the debut album from Irish progressive metal band The Vicious Head Society alongside keyboardist Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater, Black Country Communion) and drummer Kevin Talley (Chimaira, Suffocation), we can only hope to hear a lot more from.

The self-released Hedfuzy is out now via Amazon.

https://www.facebook.com/Hedfuzy

Pete RingMaster 13/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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The Inner Road – Ascension

Ascension promo

Taking the listener on a compelling and expansive journey through soundscapes which evoke and provoke thought and imagination, Ascension the new album from The Inner Road, is a vibrant and classy adventure which incites personal invention and interpretation to its narrative whilst equally creatively directing thoughts into a proposed direction. It is an enveloping kaleidoscope of instrumental progressive rock with each movement and moment drenched in a full blaze of sonic colour and inspirational craft from its creators for the deepest pleasure.

The Inner Road is a project founded by keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist/ songwriter/producer Steve Gresswell as an outlet for

Steve Gresswell

Steve Gresswell

his more symphonic style of  instrumental progressive rock, sounds and ideas which do not find a place within the creativity of his other band Coalition. The Inner Road also finds Gresswell collaborating with other musicians who bring something special to fit the need of the music. 2011 saw the release of debut album Visions, a record made with renowned guitarist Phil Braithwaite which was met with strong acclaim, and here for Ascension the musician has teamed up with one of the UK’s finest guitarists and rock songwriters to emerge in recent years, Jay Parmar. Fresh from the release of his own stunning album Circle of Fire via Steve Vai’s Digital Nations label, Parmar brings a style to the new album which sets tracks on fire with passion and evocative invention, his striking style drawing out the same hunger as inspired by his previous solo work for this album As well as his own releases and Ascension, the guitarist is also recording the new album from Exorcism featuring Csaba Zvekan and Joop De Rooij (both also in Ravenlord) as well as again joining up with Zvekan in new band D.O. Messiah, showing the appeal and impressive reputation Parmar has earned over recent years, which will only grow further when, after being invited by Gresswell, he joins Coalition who record their new album later this year.

Ascension wastes no second of its inventive presence to light up the senses and thoughts with full and extensive atmospheres, their embrace consistently fuelled by the sonic skill and grace of Parmar’s melodic incisions and alchemy; sounds and imagination which comes more often than not with a breath and caress of eastern influences and suggestion within an almost exhausting creative temptation. Set alongside the equally captivating and warmly invasive keyboard enterprise and ingenuity of Gresswell  the union makes for a release which leaves visual and emotional alchemy in its enthralling wake.

Jay Parmar

Jay Parmar

The title track opens up the adventure, a piano aiding a sun of melodic enticing to introduce the first steps on the departure into the vast realms of the album. Its company comes from crunchy riffs slowly bringing their voice to the brewing unveiling of this beckoning expansive landscape. With the sounds of both musicians coming together to sculpt the view there is a sense of depth and long passage ahead in the exploration of the immediately majestic world. The song appears as a travelogue of textures and sonic exhilaration instantly in league with the wonderful orchestral seduction at work , and their unity finding itself in tandem with the melodic weaves and wash already igniting the passions. As in all songs the music is like a ‘travel guide’, a provocateur to beauteous scenery and imagination whether visual or reflectively emotive, an investigation which is enjoyed physically and imaginatively.

From the immense opener the album takes flight through The Steel Sky; sinewy almost cold riffs from guitar and bass guiding the listener through shadowed clouds and imposing structures to find the sonic rays of light and melodic coating of sun brought from the keys and the stunning persuasive guitar commentary. It is then followed by the equally powerful Two Worlds Two Tomorrows, the track seemingly the sister to its predecessor as deeper in to the heart of the emotive terrain we go. Every song within the album feels connected to what came before and follows, for a fulfilling and ear widening melodic peregrination.

The smouldering and sizzling sonic traverse of Altered Reality and the provocative Troubled Memories step forward next to raise the temperature further. The first has fire to its intensity and creative sonic discharge whilst ensuring a continually evolving surprise in its presence with a compelling regal mid-section with potent and sirenesque strings, their orchestral embrace stepping in to temper the heated insistence of Parmar and set celestial cascades of melodic glory falling upon the ear, whilst the second is a dazzling candescent of melodic and harmonic craft leaving again only rising emotion towards its enthrallment

The biggest highlights of the thrilling album come with the final three tracks starting with A Fleeting Dream, a piece which triggers an unbridled flood of thoughts and ideas with furnace bright melodies and descriptive paint box rich sonic colouring. Parmar wrings out every emotive drop of incitement with his playing whilst the keys of Gresswell especially when he flows through a stunning sea of floral melodic expression which reminds of Dave Greenfield at his best, inciting the fullest ardour for what is the best track on the album. The outstanding and riveting The Awakening has its say on the final choice of top dog though with its initial colonial call moving aside for another poetic and provocative voyage of shifting gait and imagination whilst the closing Flight through Eternity simply lures the last of any passion still sheltering out with its strongest Eastern sultriness and inflamed closing sunset.

Ascension is an excellent and continually giving album, a release which just gets better and more potent with each travel of its ambient hot pilgrimage. The Inner Road has produced a release which is not only progressive/ instrumental rock at its best but melodic enterprise of any description.

http://www.inner-road.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Steve-Gresswell/442768909088975

https://www.facebook.com/jayparmar

9/10

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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