The Starling Radicals – Promisedland Vol 1

It is probably fair to say that last year was a disruptive one in the emergence of Welsh band The Starling Radicals, the band having to deal with “several sequential departures of recently-joined members” though it did give their fans the well-received Wasteland EP. They have come through that turbulence though with a new stable line-up and now a new encounter in the shape of Promisedland Vol 1 which as good as demands keen attention.

Formed in 2012, The Starling Radicals has built a strong and loyal following with their alternative rock bred sound nurtured with the inspiration of bands such as Nirvana, Stereophonics, and the Manic Street Preachers. Two years after stepping forward, the band released debut album Saintland, the potent first step in their rise within the UK rock scene. Promisedland Vol 1 is another leap forward and with its quartet of hook rich and rousing slices of tenacious rock ‘n’ roll, quite easy to see pushing the band and reputation a few more rungs up the ladder.

With George Toulouse offering instinctively bold vocals and guitar, Gareth Bain the dark hues of magnetic bass, and Joe Steele the lively swings of his beats, The Starling Radicals quickly get down to business with EP opener I’m With Her. Straight away an enticing wiry hook escapes the strings of Toulouse, rapacious rhythms quickly adding to the almost carnival-esque initial prowl of the song carrying just a hint of The Shanklin Freak Show to it. It is a compelling and thrilling start which maybe loses its edge a touch as warm melodies and Toulouse’s instantly striking vocals step forward. Their presence though brings a new wave of Police meets Manic Street Preachers infectiousness which in turn entangles with that earlier temptation, the song revelling in its variety and creative dexterity as it firmly grabs ears and imagination.

The band quickly show that opening a song in fine style was no flash in the pan in the first as the following You Make A Mess Of Me uncages its own delicious hook built groove to get things underway; the guitar again the instigator soon aided by controlled but bold rhythms and Toulouse’s rich tones. Its swing never allows a moments rest even when the song simmers though it is always ready to bubble over again within its melodic rock ‘n’ roll. As with the first track there is something familiar at play but an essence only adding to the enjoyment of its infectious and enterprising proposal.

The Scottish Play has a dirtier air and snarl in its blues scented rock ‘n’ roll as well as a more classic rock scenting though ultimately it is their fellow Welsh men in the Manics which comes to mind as the track hits the spot just as potently as its predecessors.

The release ends with Heart This City, a song which did not make the same kind of impact as those before it at first but it is fair to say with Toulouse vocally as alluring as ever and rhythms an anthemic undercurrent, it grew in persuasion and temptation listen by listen. It makes a fine finale to a release which maybe is not as unique as it might be but pushes the sound, reputation, and stature of The Starling Radicals to new heights and indeed the pleasure of their company.

Promisedland Vol 1 is out now.

http://www.thestarlingradicals.com/    http://www.facebook.com/TheStarlingRadicals/    https://twitter.com/thestarlingrads    https://www.instagram.com/officialstarling/

Pete RingMaster 29/11/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Unbridled arousals and stomps: exploring The Conniption Fits.

The Conniption Fits_RingMasterReview

Formed in 2004, The Conniption Fits create their own ear catching mix of alternative, progressive, and indie pop; rock ‘n’ roll which rouses the senses and imagination and has so across a host of releases. Drawing comparisons to the likes of Jimmy Eat World, Green Day, Foo Fighters, Silversun Pickups, U2, The Police, and David Bowie and having shared stages with artists such as Weezer, Panic at the Disco, Kings Of Leon, Train, 3 Doors Down, Fastball, Mighty Bosstones, 7 Mary Three, Blue Oyster Cult, Mountain, Warrant, and Cinderella among many over time, the New Hampshire hailing trio make a noise which easily sparks the appetite. Grabbing the chance to learn more about the band, we had the pleasure of chatting with member and The Conniption Fits co-founder Stevens.

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started and what brought you all together?

That’s a long story.  I’m Stevens Blanchard, lead singer guitar player for The Conniption Fits.  The drummer, Shawn Snyder and I met back when we were kids.  My current band needed a drummer and he was a friend of a friend, not to mention a fantastic drummer with tons of attitude.  When that band broke up, we founded The Conniption Fits.  Jamie Hosley, or bass player, came along when we were looking for a new bassist.  Again, he had a reputation as being “the man” when it comes to bass, naturally we had to have him.

So The Conniption Fits is not the first band for you? Has previous projects had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

I think I just answered that above, but yes.  We had a previous band, Motorplant, which did quite well for about 8 years.  You can still find all of the music that Motorplant produced all over the web including iTunes and Spotify.  When Motorplant disbanded, we wanted to head in a slightly more alternative direction.

What inspired the band name?

If the conniption fits, wear it.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Far from it…We just enjoy playing and entertaining.  As far as the sound goes, I just want to create ear candy.  Songs with depth sonically and lyrically that are accessible and a bit unpredictable at the same time.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

Always evolving…You can tell album to album.  Every record seems to represent where our minds were at musically at that period of time.  I’m always hearing new bands that are doing really cool things that we want to incorporate into our own stuff.  I’d say we listen as much, or more, than we play.

TCF2Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved?

We deliberately try new things.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.  On our second album, A Heaping Helping of Perspective the guys thought it would be cool if we recorded live without a click track.  I hated the idea, being a stickler for tempo.  It led to a different album and different songs for sure.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

Too many to mention, from Jazz to Metal…Speaking for myself I’d say bands like Nothing But Thieves, The Shins, Bear Hands, Coldplay, Eve6, Green Day, Foo Fighters, Kongos…  I love creative rock/pop/alternative songs that still have a hook, but avoid the same four chords and progressions that are so typical.

Is there a particular process to the band’s songwriting?

I am usually the idea man then we flush it out as a group.  Sometimes I’ll record the whole song then we will replace the drums and bass later. I’m into results; I don’t care how we get there.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

Life; I’ll sing lyric variations to a demo while I’m out for a run.  I usually find cool ideas that way.  I also hear the parts that suck and need to be changed.

Can you give us some background to your latest release?

I Need You (Ay-O) is an old relate that became new again when it started treating on-line. We’ve always loved the song and are happy to have it finally breaking through the “clutter”.

Give us some insight to its theme.

I need you is about wanting to leave a relationship, but continuing to be drawn back in; then dealing with the fact that needing somebody can be for very different reasons.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

I own the studio we record in.  It’s an amazing luxury because we are not “on the clock” burning money.  So we just show up with nothing and play.  Often I’ll have scraps of ideas ready to jump off from.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably the favourite aspect of the band?

Yeah, live is where we bring it.  We entertain.  We always have a great time and that usually transfers to the audience.  It’s also the only real way we’ve made any money.  So we play live to survive, and we love it.

It is not easy for any band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands?TCF_RingMasterReview

Not easy, but work hard and offer something great.  It doesn’t even have to be unique, just great.  Make people say “holy shit!”, and you’ll do fine.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date?

The internet grants everyone access, even the garbage.  I think we handle it well, but there is that constant drive needed to stand out in all the noise.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Check out our website, http://www.conniptionfits.com/ to listen to all of our songs for free and look for our new EP this summer!

https://www.facebook.com/conniptionfits/  https://twitter.com/conniption_fits

Pete RingMaster

The Ringmaster Review 01/07/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Forty Four Hours – Only Just Holding On EP

Pic ashley_bird_

Pic ashley_bird_

Word of mouth has suggested there is a buzz brewing around a particular emerging talent from the city of Manchester; a suggestion backed up by the band’s UK tour last year, and now we can say that all good things heard about Forty Four Hours are true and more. Our evidence comes in the band’s debut EP, Only Just Holding On, a four track adventure of alternative rock ‘n’ pop that grips ears and imagination from so many angles that you need a map to pinpoint them all.

Formed in the February of 2014, Forty Four Hours consists of twin brothers Joe (vocals/keys/bass) and Alex Holden (vocals/guitar) alongside Alix Foden (drums). The band’s first single Earl Gray awoke numerous sets of ears and appetites for the band’s distinctive sound, a success matched by a quickly enthused over live presence incorporating that aforementioned tour around the UK amongst numerous more shows culminating in joining Funeral For A Friend on the Doc Marten’s #standforsomething tour. Last year saw the band, alongside continuing their hunger to play live, set about recording their debut EP; a release described by Joe recently as “a radical left turn from the bands earlier material. If anything, this record is quite a bit darker, it expresses a lot of stuff we’ve needed to say for the past year: writing it has been really cathartic. We’ve tried not to make you cry though. We really got to experiment with this record, so expect the unexpected.

44 Hours - JHO Artwork_RingMaster ReviewMusically it is hard to say the EP is a particularly dark proposition, its lively and busy enterprise an adventurous smile on the ears but certainly lyrically the band is unafraid to delve into emotive shadows. It opens up with Hold Out, a song quickly setting out the EP’s stall in sound, tone, and imagination. As suggested, the Forty Four Hours proposal is openly distinctive, something boldly away from the crowd though imagine Mallory Knox and The Police getting down and intense and you get a clue to the virulently contagious roar of their EP and sound. The opener makes its first touch with drama lined and slightly moody keys crossed by spicy guitar, their potent union continuing as the quickly gripping tones of Joe, backed as potently by the voice of Alex, capture the imagination with the song’s narrative. In no time the track has engulfed attention with its rich temptation of guitar and vocals alongside shadowy textures cast by bass and beats, it all laced with magnetic hooks and wrapped in an irresistible catchiness.

The following Difficult is of a similar breed but swiftly showing unique character with punchy beats aligned to funk bred guitar and bass enterprise. Soon throbbing with its thick contagion loaded swagger, the song also embraces more of the dark drama of its predecessor though it is cleverly tempered by sparkling keys and the increasingly magnetic vocal enterprise bred within the band. Like its predecessor, it has body and emotions exhausted such the involvement lured but Pressure & Sleep soon allows a breath to be taken with its mellower romancing of the senses. The third song is just as keen to weave bolder energy and tenacious creative deeds into its swinging shuffle though, resulting in another infectious seduction if with a modicum of reserve to its compelling presence.

The Time And The Place completes the line-up of Only Just Holding On; it another feisty romp as devilish for the dance-floor as a single set of speakers with Forty Four Hours only confirming their ability to write and sculpt songs that warmly demand attention and incite eager involvement from all before them. As the EP, everything about the song hits the sweet spot; all the time suggesting we have something special within our ears from a band with the potential to soon be a well-spoken name in the clutches of acclaim.

The self-released Only Just Holding On EP is available from January 22nd @ https://fortyfourhours.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/fortyfourhoursofficial   http://www.fortyfourhours.com  https://twitter.com/FortyFour_Hours

Pete Ringmaster 22/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/

 

Bad Mary – Killing Dinosaurs EP

Photo by Nick P Jiannaras of Nicolai Patrick Photography_

Photo by Nick P Jiannaras of Nicolai Patrick Photography_

When presented with a band name like Bad Mary mischievous thoughts of course spring up as well as hopes that they have a sound to back up the devilish allure of their name. The Long Island quartet has that and more on the evidence of new EP Killing Dinosaurs. It is six highly flavoursome and raucous slices of punk ‘n’ roll unafraid to be as pop catchy as they are belligerently irritable. It is steeped in seventies punk and power pop with the attitude and tenacity of modern rock ‘n’ roll, and quite irresistible.

Bad Mary’s beginnings sprung in 2010 from the regular happening of Hofstra University’s professor of drama and guitarist David Henderson putting a band together with students each semester to play a bunch of covers. At this moment in time vocalist Amanda Mac and bassist/vocalist Mike Staub were the students who became involved, with a time of turnover in drummers ending with Amanda’s dad and veteran drummer Bill Mac joining the band. Playing songs from favourite new wave and punk artists from several eras, initially as Madame X, Bad Mary was officially launched in 2012, and through each member’s individual love of punk and rock from different decades, the band’s own sound grew and blossomed. Debut album Better Days was the first offering, a 2014 release going on to garner three first-round ballot Grammy nominations, success matched by their live presence and their songs luring media and radio attention on both sides of the pond.

cover_RingMaster Review     With inspirations ranging from The Ramones, The Sex Pistols, and Motorhead to The Tom Robinson Band, The Police, Blondie, and Green Day amongst many, the band’s new EP is a non-stop stomp that growls as it invites, bullies as it sets ears and imagination alight. Recorded with producer/engineer Matt Storm and assistant engineer Francisco Botero at Studio G in Brooklyn, Killing Dinosaurs gets straight to the point with opener Soapbox. Amanda leads the confrontation from the off, her potent tones the first touch and fiery guitars around rampant rhythms the next. It is an infectious and grouchy start with the growl of bass alone a brooding impossible to resist temptation as the guitars release their similarly enticing caustic flames. The backing roars of Mike brings a fiercer texture to compliment the intimidatingly tantalising tones of Amanda whilst more metal bred hues add to the overall brawl of the excellent start to the EP.

Whereas the first track has a presence crossing years, the following Want What I Want carries a great old school punk character, strolling with a swagger which is part Vice Squad and part The Objex. The bass of Mike again captivates with its heavy swagger whilst David weaves a hook lined web of enterprise part venom part flirtation as Bill slaps the listeners’ proverbial cheeks around. Eclipsing its predecessor, it too is shaded a touch by next up Hanging Around, a boisterous canter carrying the glam rock of Sweet, the mischievous pop punk of the Rezillos, and the rapacious virulence of dragSTER. The track steals the show, leaving an already strong appetite greedier and already by this time an exhausted body more wasted but energised.

A cover of The Police song Next to You swings in next with a similar swagger and nature whilst delving into more classic heavy rock enterprise whilst adding a tasty scent of early No Doubt punk pop to it . Again physical involvement is a given as it spins its lures, a success emulated by the X-Ray Spex meets The Avengers like Sucks to Be You, another rousing middle finger of word and energy

Killing Dinosaurs is completed by One More Song, a compelling mix of fifties rock ‘n’ roll and sixties pop embroiled in power pop/punk rock imagination and dexterity. It is an infectious end to an increasingly enjoyable encounter; a collusion of old school and twenty first century punk ‘n’ roll to lift emotions from the doldrums and bodies into feverish participation.

The Killing Dinosaurs EP is out now @ https://badmary.bandcamp.com/album/killing-dinosaurs-ep

http://badmary.com/  https://twitter.com/BadMaryBand   https://www.facebook.com/badmaryband

Pete RingMaster 22/10/2105

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent and promotional services check out http://www.zykotika.com/

Underground Ocean – I See Through You

Underground Ocean_RingMaster Review

Following a highly promising debut single, UK rockers Underground Ocean raise the ante with their second encounter, the explosively enticing I See Through You. In hindsight its enjoyable predecessor, Get Me Out, almost feels like the band was testing the water, building up to a bigger splash with its successor, and fair to say the new single is just that, a big nudge to greater attention.

Worcester bred Underground Ocean consists of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Stuart McDonnell, lead guitarist Matt Beddoes, bassist George Parker, and drummer Lee Evans and spices its music with inspirations ranging from Foo Fighters, The Police, and Manic Street Preachers to the Stereophonics and Fleetwood Mac. Formed early 2014, the quartet quickly set down a marker for their live presence, selling out home town gigs immediately with their debut staged in a 250 capacity venue. Since then they have played various shows across England to increasing success and acclaim with 2015 a rather busy year on that front. Now they look set and ready to stoke up more attention with I See Through You and its accompanying video.

The single instantly erupts in ears with force and energy, the swinging beats of Evans slicing through the just as rousing riffs cast by McDonnell and Beddoes. Things settle down a touch as the strong tones of McDonnell join the affair though there is still a raucous jangle from the guitars and the bass of Parker continues its eager dark stroll. The chorus is a rapid temptation too, its emotive and sonic roar coated with magnetic drama and anthemic urgency and with ease quickly involving the listener. The song continues to creatively bellow as new twists and scythes of fresh sound mingle in its angst lit heart right through to its final striking second.

Again the word rousing has to be used to describe the character and effect of the song, and its incendiary impact on satisfaction and appetite. Get Me Out was a potent introduction to Underground Ocean but I See Through You easily leaves it in its wake, and ahead of an EP the band is currently working towards, both songs ensure it is going to be one impatiently anticipated proposition.

I See Through You is available now

Pete RingMaster 14/09/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

For more exploration of the independent check out http://www.zykotika.com/

The Landed – Friends

The Landed_RingMaster Review

Following up the catchy adventure of previous single She, UK band The Landed release a mellower but no less persuasive proposal with its successor Friends. The song reveals more of the depth and variety in the Colchester quartet’s sound and though, compared to its predecessor, it is a calmer stroll it comes with its own lively and magnetic energy.

Hailing from Colchester, the quartet of Dan Currie, Paul Jannece, and brothers Paul and David Hale have been regularly stirring up keen and supportive attention, especially once releasing their well-received self-titled EP in 2014. Its set of six alternative and indie rock bred songs soon lured interest of fans and media, as well as strong radio play through the likes of Tom Robinson at 6 Music and Huw Stephens at Radio 1. Earlier this year, She showed a new and more mature body to the band’s sound, a suggestion more than confirmed by Friends.

artwork_RingMaster ReviewThe title track from the band’s new EP, the new single swiftly has ears enticed with its opening caress of guitar and a quickly following and fuller lure of chords, melodies, and a darkly enticing bassline. There is an instant swing to the song too, one emulated in the strong vocals and the overall rhythmic dance of the growing song. As mentioned, the track shows a more restrained gait and energy to the last single yet every hook, twist in invention, and melodic smile is designed to and successfully seduce feet and voice into eager involvement.

Many bands have been given as references to The Landed sound, Fleetwood Mac, ELO, Noah And The Whale, and The Police amongst them, and certainly the last pair are whispers you can hear in the warm canter of the song. Their vivacious last single She still edges the two for personal tastes, but Friends potently shows that The Landed is no one-trick pony in potent songwriting and enjoyable sound, and that their new EP should be closely paid attention to.

Friends is available now.

http://www.thelanded.com/    https://www.facebook.com/thelanded

RingMaster 24/07/2015

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

Underground Ocean – Get Me Out

Underground Ocean_RingMaster Review

Get Me Out is the debut single from UK rock band Underground Ocean and it is fair to say that the strong and seriously agreeable encounter sets a very potent base from which the band can spring forward from. It is an attention sparking introduction, not a song to set a fanfare ringing in the head, but one easily suggesting Underground Ocean are moving in the right direction to becoming a very viable rock success.

The Worcester quartet began early 2014, breeding their sound from inspirations ranging from Foo Fighters, The Police, and Manic Street Preachers to Stereophonics and Fleetwood Mac. The foursome of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Stuart McDonnell, lead guitarist Matt Beddoes, bassist George Parker, and drummer Lee Evans all come into the band with experiences of playing across the UK with various bands, Evans alone a part of outfits supporting the likes of L.A. Guns (Both), Ratt, Twisted Sister, Poison, Vince Neil, Bang Tango, Skid Row, Faster Pussycat, and Dirty Penny over the years. Experience is always a plus factor and you can feel that kind of knowledge and prowess soaking the new single, its creator’s learning of craft in the field so to speak, bringing as much to the maturity and rich songwriting fuelling the band’s sound and indeed Get Me Out, as the undoubted individual skill and invention of its members.

cover_RingMaster Review    Get Me Out emerges on a sonic lure, quickly unveiling a weave of melodic and rhythmic enterprise ready for the warm tones of McDonnell. With everything in place as the song hits a vibrant and punchy stride, a familiar air washes over the track yet it brings no distinct comparisons, just a general glaze of melody rich rock and quickly enjoyable endeavour. There is also real catchiness to the song which has feet tapping and voices involved in its easy going chorus, that infectiousness enhanced by the great shadowed feel of the bass which bring an opposing and a similarly rounded depth to the song as the vocals.

Recorded with Gavin Monaghan at Magic Garden studios and originally released last December, the re-release of Get Me Out feels like it is in the right place at the right time to awaken greater awareness of Underground Ocean and their persistently engaging sound. The song does not have you sparking into rigorous declarations about the band just yet but ahead of their new single I See Through You in September and their first EP later this year, it inspires definite intrigue to hear more.

Get Me Out is out now on iTunes and most other major platforms.

Upcoming Underground Ocean live dates…

7th August, Worcester Beer, Cider and PERRY FESTIVAL – Pitchcroft, Worcester

22nd August, Boars Head – Kidderminster

http://undergroundocean.com/  https://www.facebook.com/undergroundocean

RingMaster 13/07/2015

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