Moonshot – Last Train Home

Try tracking them down in Google and UK bred Moonshot is an eagerly evasive proposition but musically they are one warmly welcoming pleasure especially courtesy of new album, Last Train Home.

Consisting of Dan Kent and Rich Wolfe, Moonshot is an electronica weaving melancholy embracing duo which have been no strangers to praise and recognition through previous releases. Last Train Home is our introduction to their sound which has been described as “Depeche Mode meets Pet Shop Boys and Hurts at Massive Attack’s house party!” You may easily add other eighties nurtured artists to that list yet the London and Margate hailing pair have a sound which is as potently individual as it is at ease revealing its likely inspirations. With radiance burning vocal harmonies and a melodic enterprise which almost physically resonates through every vein of the band’s writing, their new album has proved an unexpected and at times breath-taking treat.

It opens with the lively shimmer of Winter Within, instantly alluring electronic dew glimmering in ears before the song springs into its creative canter around falsetto set vocals. As another burst of energy is triggered, the duo’s truly captivating harmonic union descends perfectly tempered by the darker tone and pulsation of rhythms. Contagion soaks every aspect of the track, its lushness and shadowed intimation a cradle for the band’s vocal prowess and its own suggestiveness.

The following Winter Will Pass is a warmer glaze to the slight chill of its predecessor, again a crystalline soundscape conjured this time with a hue easy to hear why Depeche Mode has especially been mentioned in reference to the Moonshot sound. It too has a dark breath to its often cool caresses and is just as inescapably entrancing before the melancholic sombre of Dark Clouds floats across the senses and imagination. Kent and Wolfe are a sunspot of harmonious beauty, their vocal craft and ethereal dynamics the real sun and heart of the album but as here keenly backed by the understanding adventure and at times climatic contrast of their music. Like a fusion of The Radioactive Grandma and Ladytron the song is irresistible.

The steelier presence of next up Too Much makes just as potent an impression with its rockier ambience soaked saunter, guitars and synths gently swinging to the earnest croon of the vocals while Speak No Words offers a cinematic allusion to its shadow hearted intimacy. The latter also has an instinctive catchiness in its belly which erupts in a chorus which simply beguiles from within the song’s otherwise darkly lit slightly heavy climate. To be honest there are so many major highlights within Last Train Home, and though this may not consistently be one for personal tastes that chorus is aural alchemy.

Illuminations has its own distinct drama, its initial melodic crystals subsequently discoloured and revitalised by the dark atmospheric shadows and headier heavier touch of evocative rhythms. Vocals counter the song’s bold trespass with their usual harmonic radiation, seeping under the skin and into the imagination as richly as the apocalyptic theatre around them.

We did not take to the album’s title track as keenly as other songs yet its melodic luminance as unsurprisingly the band’s vocal enticement is impossible to gloss over as it entices on its way to passing satisfied ears over to Hunting Down the Hunter. You would not say the track was predatory but it definitely has a certain dark edge to its tone and touch even as its dance and infection creating instincts collude and escape into a broadening landscape of persuasion.

The final pair of The Way To Go, a caress of acoustic guitar and vocal reflection within an electronic misting which in certain moments rises to its dramatic feet with compelling tenacity, and the similarly accomplished Angels in the Snow ensures the album’s conclusion is a hug of captivation. The closer is a fascinating slice of storytelling adding just another dark meets light shade to the album’s creative landscape.

Truthfully we did not expect to enjoy Last Train Home anywhere as much as we did due to that fusion of comparisons earlier mentioned, but it was a surprise we have only greedily devoured. There is every chance you will too especially if electronic, pop, harmonic, and atmospheric enterprise is your particular treat.

Last Train Home is available now via F&G Records @ https://fandg.me/independent-label/shop

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Pete RingMaster 06/09/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Ape Rising – Self Titled

It is hard to believe that it is five years and a few months ago that we were tantalised and hooked on the melodic dexterity and acoustic mischief of The Radioactive Grandma and their debut album, the fact that numerous of its tracks from it are still a regular part of our intimate listening for pleasure moments. Ready to re-energise that playlist, the outfit has returned with a new offering to grip ears and seduce the imagination.

It is not quite as simple as that though. Firstly the Co Cavan and Maynooth hailing band is now called Ape Rising and where once a trio it is now a tenaciously inventive quintet. Band originals in vocalist/guitarists Johno Leader and Peter Donohue are still there leading the way in melodic enterprise and lyrical suggestiveness but now joined by keyboardist Peter Denton, drummer Fran Mc Donnell, and bassist Jimmy Deface who is/was also one half of the excellent duo Juggling Wolves alongside Leader. Whether it was the need to recruit new members or the evolution of their sound which inspired the new moniker, or as hinted at elsewhere a dubious porn site taking their previous domain name, it certainly comes with a fresh wind of invention and a broader array of sound with the outfit; a blend simply lighting up their new self-titled treat.

Their acoustic prowess is still in evidence but embraced by a new indie/progressive/math rock venture which truly refuses to sit in any camp but embraces plenty of styles and flavours within its retro kissed synth inspired adventure. To say it is magnetic from start to finish does not do the increasing irresistibility of the album justice. It swiftly gets under the skin and engagingly niggles away whether with or without its company. It all starts with In Their Masses, the song rising from an initial ignition sparking sample in a melodic haze before guitars begin weaving their suggestive enterprise around the vocal prowess of Leader and the assisting tones of Donohue and band. Perpetually blossoming second by second as melodies and harmonies cluster, a seventies synth essence brings its flowing colours to the creative canvas. It is just one of the emerging traits though, a raw alternative growl having its moment in voice and sound too before things settle back into the track’s gentler yet still fiery seduction.

The song is pure temptation sparking things off and setting the heart of the release in fine style before being eclipsed by the following Oddysee. Straight away a great nagging hook is at work, its touch part celestial part espionage like resembling one of the teasing attributes of those classic sixties/seventies spy/sci-fi TV show themes. From its intrigue, a strolling body of infectious energy and endeavour surges, spun by guitar and keys as rhythms dance boisterously around zeal fuelled vocals. There is theatre in its nature, adventure in its heart; a combination with individually cast bold invention unites to simply hit the spot.

There is a bit of early Jimmy Eat World to next up King Of The Universe, Denton’ s keys bubbling with that ever present seventies  revelry alongside the irresistible acoustic craft of the guitars. Incessantly catchy to feet, neck muscles, and appetite, the song whisks the imagination away into its own climate of warm temptation; a plateau frequented just as captivatingly by Divide where imagining Young Knives and KingBathmat fused together gives an idea of the enticing progressive hug of the song and its graceful voice.

Keeping Me Away is a slice of indie rock ‘n’ pop which has the body bouncing with just its first eager strum, and swinging by the time keys swarm poetically across high-spirited rhythms.  Of all the songs within the album, this has the boldest Radioactive Grandma feel to its swinging body but it comes with the organic infectiousness which made eighties outfit The Woodentops so glorious, and now adds the same addictive quality to Ape Rising.

The calmer reflection of Medicine Part 1 shares a poetic suasion which reminds of songwriter/composer/musician John Bassett while Medicine Part 2 loads all of its predecessor’s assets into its own rousing sortie on ears and imagination, at times bewitching like a hybrid of Yes and Voyager. Numerous tracks make a play for best honours but this always stands at the front of the pack with every listen.

It is probably fair to say that To Daze The Day I borrows something of Juggling Wolves for its emotive canter but a stroll which bubbles with an energy which borders on raucous as keen invention simply lights up ears and the passions with an unrelenting imagination.

New single, The Model Prime skips in next; its melodic dance and harmonic sways animatingly lighting the song’s retro tone and mesh of glowing flavours. Like a siren it calls on ears and the spirit, unafraid to add unpredictability to its warmly cast temptations before the shuffle of the album gets even more kinetic within Joysticks & Stones, a song which at times has a touch of eighties band Furniture to it and in other moments the more hot-headed devilry of someone like Bloc Party.

The album finishes on the lustfully simmering progressive pop of Flicker and finally the pop rock beauty of 6 Eight 7. Both tracks simply match the pleasures before them with their own ear stroking, spirit stirring enterprises with the stunning first again having a great KingBathmat vibe which can never do any harm while its successor offers an acoustically nurtured samba which excites the senses with its unrelenting and greedily accepted infection.

The Radioactive Grandma will never be forgotten here or lose their spot on for pleasure only listening but now they are joined with equal zeal by Ape Rising, a proposition sure to drive you to highly pleasurable distraction.

The Ape Rising album is out now @ https://aperising.bandcamp.com/ and through other stores.

https://www.aperising.com/     https://www.facebook.com/ApeRising/    https://twitter.com/Ape_Rising

Pete RingMaster 02/10/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Spark The Sail – Sapphire Deep

Spark The Sail Promo Shot_RingMaster Review

There has generally always been a strong underground scene spreading out in Bristol but right now the British city seems to be at a new high in excitement and potency. There is a vast horde of artists catching ears and attention with, for us, bands like The St. Pierre Snake Invasion, who just released their exceptional debut album, Jesuits, Left Side Brain, and the currently quiet Mind Museum leading the way. To that list we can now add rock popsters Spark The Sail, a quintet releasing a debut EP that simply leaves ears and pleasure aflame.

The Sapphire Deep EP is a rousing romp of pop ‘n’ roll, a feel good contagion built on open craft and fresh imagination. Every one of its five songs has the body and emotions leaping, the appetite for its boisterous beauty greedier by the second, with the psyche lost in its web of virulent catchiness. To local fans this is no surprise and now the UK and further afield can wake up to magnetic rock music as virulent as it comes.

Spark The Sail initially began as the duo of vocalist Jodie Davies and vocalist/acoustic guitarist Ryan Moore. Then as 2013 called it a day, the band had grown to a quintet with the addition of electric guitarist Robbie Rowe, bassist James Killackey, and drummer Mitchel Lucas. Honing their unity and sound, the band subsequently hit the live scene and were soon adding the sharing of stages with the likes of The Hoosiers, Dub Pistols, and Tinie Tempah to their quickly expanding CV. Successful appearances at The Isle Of Wight Festival this year and a host of other shows across the south of England has only added to their reputation and fan base; both now set to explode as Sapphire Deep unveils its rich revelry.

Spark The Sail Cover Artwork_RingMaster Review     The band’s inspirations include bands such as Panic! At The Disco, The Skints, and Paramore; fair to say open influences in varying degrees from the first track onwards though equally there is an energy in the songwriting and melodies which has a feel of Irish bands The Radioactive Grandma/ K.N.O.T.S. As opener Sapphire reveals, it is potent flavouring to something, if not unique to Spark The Sail quite yet, easily allowing them to standout as something highly promising and special. The song opens on a melancholic piano cast melody, around it the atmosphere hazy and slightly distorted. Energy brews simultaneously, erupting in a stroll of punchy rhythms and coaxing riffs led by the excellent dual vocal persuasion of Davies and Moore. Alone their voices entice but together enthral and ignite ears as easily as the weave of acoustic and electrified enterprise aligning to their creative theatre. Like a gem, the song has a host of faces to its adventure, each having a moment to shine and tempt before the song concludes on another boisterous roar of pop devilry.

The following Never The Moment keeps ears and enjoyment flying, the opening bait of rhythms from Lucas setting the template of the song with its anthemic shuffle soon joined by smiling melodies and hooks. Again the vocals transfix and bewitch, side by side or hand in hand a thrilling colour to a track again twisting and turning with perpetual imagination. The glorious encounter leaves rich hooks in ears and memory, its character a lingering friend but as Outlook shows next, that also applies to each song. Like its predecessor, the swinging slice of fun has meaty rock ‘n’ roll at its core and spicy pop melody in its heart, both wrapped in a swirling folk pop scent for a riveting and lively drama with a good whiff of Fall out Boy to it.

   Trust Me is next and with elegant melodies as its first caress, swiftly has the imagination floating away with its atmospheric and emotive air. A relatively more restrained and intensive affair than the first trio of tracks, it still weaves a rosy hug of vocals, harmonies, and expressive melodies around a firmer lure of rhythmic bait.

The release is brought to an energetic and tenacious end by Pieces, another easy to get physically and mentally involved in proposal bouncing round with creative enthusiasm and melodic flirtation. The track sums up the whole of the EP in its closing dance of passion and sound to light up any day and shadow.

Spark The Sail is now firmly installed as not only one or our favourite Bristol exports but of our pop /rock joys. Mark our words; this band is going places if Sapphire Deep is the sign of things to come.

The Sapphire Deep EP is released November 6th through all stores.

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

Pete RingMaster 06/11/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Following Foxes – Self Titled EP

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When an artist or band has a background which involves in part the Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford, there is always an intrigue to learn more, partly because the town is a part of our musical heritage too and mostly because of some of the talent which has been nurtured at the ACM. From one of the UK’s most potent and impressive place of musical education, the likes of Newton Faulkner, Guy Davis who was part of the UK’s finest alternative rock antagonists Reuben, Joe Butterworth of Talanas, and Alexis Demetriou who formed the criminally unrecognised rockers Lost In Wonderland, have made varying impacting but potent marks on the British music scene. It is a long list also including members of Lawson and some bloke named Ed Sheeran, successes to which you can now add home town boys Following Foxes.

With its members all meeting at ACM, Following Foxes formed in 2013 and having a strong past year on the live scene now release their self-titled debut EP to nudge a broader attention to their presence. The five track release is a captivating introduction to the quartet, a handful of songs bred in a melodic caress of folk and indie/acoustic rock which energetically and skilfully bring a summery and creatively tenacious proposition to the senses. Drawing in inspirations from bands such as Biffy Clyro, Mumford & Sons, City and Colour, and Pink Floyd, Following Foxes shows themselves to be a thoroughly magnetic proposal and their EP more than likely to pick up wider media attention to back up already eager play on local radio stations across the South East of the UK.

The band’s new single, Almost Lost It is first up and right away with punchy bass lures from Mike Chapman and a great shuffle of beats within a caress of guitar, has ears and imagination paying close attention. The song relaxes soon after to welcome the strong vocals of Gid Sedgwick, his tones as warm and alluring as the melodic venture already shown by his and Alex Hill’s guitars. Subsequently with ears transfixed, another bait of thick beats from Steve Price adds fresh adventure before the song settles into a vibrant stroll loaded with a folkish revelry and melodic

Artwork by Harry Murr @ Roberts Clothing

Artwork by Harry Murr @ Roberts Clothing

swagger. There is still plenty of variety to gait and sound across the song though, sometimes more subtle than in others but a great unpredictable essence which grips the appetite and certain enjoyment.

The following I Saw, You Saw Me Back makes a less dramatic entrance though Sedgwick immediately holds court with his melodic croon and lyrical intimacy. It is still a strongly appealing first touch though which expands into a feisty but composed dance of voice and rhythms within a melodic seduction. As its predecessor, the track soon worms under the skin and into the psyche, a Lennon and McCartney whisper spicing part of the song whilst others times it romps along like a mix of Knots, Common Tongues, and The Radioactive Grandma.

Waiting for Someone, like those before it, simultaneously manages to be a warm reflective hug and a fiery little rocker, the great vocals across the band and occasionally a rigorously driving rhythmic thrust respectively igniting another memorable and increasingly enjoyable offering. It does not quite match up to the first pair such their might, but leaves satisfaction full before making way for Mother Brother. Though you cannot describe any of the songs as aggressive, there is a definite edge to the song when it steps up its energy around harmonically and melodically seductive embraces. It is a compelling end to a fine release; well not exactly an end as there is the brief melodic Outro to come but the party has ended by this point, its atmospheric haunting that drifting away of guests and excitement like after any slice of major fun.

Following Foxes has made a very impressive first step with a release which could straight away set them on a potent journey towards sparking the country’s attention. If not now it is impossible not to think or expect it will happen eventually but seems silly to wait, so go check out this highly pleasing release.

The Following Foxes EP is available now @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/following-foxes-ep1-ep/id964894157

https://www.facebook.com/FollowingFoxes     http://followingfoxes.com/

RingMaster 02/03/2015

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://reputationradio.yooco.org/

 

 

 

 

Juggling Wolves – Self Titled

JW promo2

With first single Mercury an impressive, thickly flavoured appetiser a few months back, anticipation for the Juggling Wolves debut album has been eagerly building as the weeks passed by. The song was a potent and fascinating encounter, its potential and tapestry of sound and emotion alone enough to awaken a keen appetite, but now in hindsight it was only a mere whiff of the majesty that is Juggling Wolves the album.

Every track upon the album is an immersive exploration, a kaleidoscope of invention and fluid evolution of sound which takes ears and thoughts on a transfixing melodic flight. The band cast a sonic narrative which can be described as progressive rock and pop, but there is wonderfully no exact label to be put upon music and album just a long list of hinting references and whispers as colours to describe the albums unique exploits. Consisting of Jimmy Deface from folk/blues rockers Rufus Coates & the Blackened Trees and Johno Leader of acoustic indie rock band The Radioactive Grandma, Juggling Wolves has spent the past two years working on their first album, creating and recording it at their own studio in Co Cavan. Mastered by Fergal Davis, the release is now having its dawning with the deserved broadest spotlight hopefully beckoning.

From its first breath, opener Deadmans Strings is crooning and potently serenading the senses and imagination, a lone guitar amidst an embrace of keys a potent texture for the instantly magnetic vocals. It is a riveting start, a gentle invitation which is soon erupting with an appealing dark bassline and crisp rhythms. Bolting on a vivacious rock ‘n’ roll adventure, the track proceeds to twists and flirt with various textures and swathes of invention, harmonies as bewitching as the sparkling melodies and muscular energy as compelling as the unpredictable imagination of the encounter.

From a head start the album only gains in temptation and captivation as Mercury steps up next. Radiance smothers ears from a distant entrance, swiftly consuming ears with harmonies and a tangy tease of guitar. Almost from its first second there is a drama to the track, a theatre to its chords and cinematic air to the vocal and emotional investigation. As agitated beats and dark bass tempting joins its melancholic yet fiery heart, the song ebbs and flows like the sea, its intensity lapping the beaches of ears and thoughts with relentless but intermittent tenacity. As in all songs though, any moment is just a character in a broader waltz of sonically poetic enterprise and melodically fuelled invention.

Tow pushes things up another level again, the engrossing proposition basking in a Faith No More like ingenuity and drama with flights of spellbinding progressive flirtation adding intriguing Juggling Wolves Album Coverand mesmeric hues. Grooves and rhythms provide a sturdy almost imposing edge and core to the song throughout, the offering a merger of light and shadows which is almost sinister in its transfixing elegance and charm before following instrumental One Trick Pony brings its almost portentous melodic haunting to ears and psyche. A sombre track which sparks new thoughts and discoveries with every fresh listen, it leads the listener towards the outstanding Daze Unknown. The track’s warped twang of a start is an immediate seduction, a glorious discord kissed bait which evolves into a spicy web of guitar and vocals within a slightly deranged ethereal haze. It is soon spreading its dramatic narrative and musical croon across the imagination with bordering on unhinged guitar endeavour contrasting and complimenting the warm breeze of keys and harmonies. Intimate yet also spatial in its presence, the song is sonic magnetism, bringing a craft and bold inventiveness which rests potently alongside that of musician John Bassett and especially his band KingBathmat.

Through the fascinating realm of Lonely Gold, a track sharing melodic elegance and reassuring calm with a darker, emotionally distraught sonic discovery, and the immersive hug of Wither, Juggling Wolves simply entrance ears and emotions. The first of the two is a startling dive into the unknown and quite invigorating whilst its successor sultrily smoulders as it expels emotionally evocative and vocally provocative beauty which recalls singer songwriter Colin Vearncombe, especially in his Black guise; a comparison which can also be applied to How to Salvage a Failing Butterfly, though across its numerous aspects and ingenious turns, the song defies everything apart from inescapable attention. Though may be not our favourite as magnificent as it is, the track has to be the pinnacle of the album with its climatic structures and busy but relaxed twists. A melodic emprise to soundtrack any emotional and intimate adventure, the song is simply sublime, just as the album to be honest.

The closing instrumental Terms & Conditions makes the perfect epilogue to the album, a luminousness weave of evocative sound and emotive intrigue capping off an increasingly impacting proposition. Hopes were high, and may be expectations too, of the Juggling Wolves album but it left those looking meagre within mere minutes of its exhilarating presence. This is a band creating musical alchemy and their album their first creative hex on the passions.

Juggling Wolves is available now via iTunes and all other digital outlets and @ https://jugglingwolves.bandcamp.com/

http://www.jugglingwolves.com/

RingMaster 10/12/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Juggling Wolves – Mercury

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Ahead of their debut album, UK rock band Juggling Wolves unveil first single Mercury to spice up a definite anticipation for its full-length source. A merger of alternative and progressive rock with experimental hues and striking ambient colours, the track is a captivating proposition which alone ensures that How To Salvage A Failing Butterfly upon its release in October will get keen attention.

Hailing from Ireland, Juggling Wolves is the creative alternative experimental adventure of Jimmy Deface from folk/blues rockers Rufus Coates & the Blackened Trees and Johno Leader of acoustic indie rock band The Radioactive Grandma. It is a very different proposition from the pair’s other exploits but just as rich with earthy melodies and organic breath. In late 2012, the duo united in The Beast-Suite Studios in Co Cavan, combining their skills and ideas for what would become How to Salvage a Failing Butterfly. One track does not make an album but taking Mercury as evidence and a potent teaser, the album is destined to be a provocateur for the imagination and seduction to the ears.

The single opens with a distant caress of keys and radiant yet fiery harmonies, the song drifting in keenly but with restraint as a guitar circles ears with its resourceful coaxing. It is not long though before rigorous stabs of sound break through, sinew crafted rhythms and sturdy strokes of guitar splicing the air. The union of both calm and fire entwine as an atmospheric wind of melodic expression and percussive agitation unite for a milder but no less pungent flight of endeavour. With keys bringing an emotive drama as bass shadows surround the slow vocals tones with a melancholic hug, the song evocatively glides across senses and thoughts. It is a masterful incitement, a waltz which seamlessly either flirts with emotional intensity or dances with vivacious appetite whilst leading the imagination into a poetic landscape of suggestion and reflection.

As unpredictable as it is enthrallingly mesmeric, Mercury is a thick yet smoothly flowing sunset of emotions and sound. The track constantly surprises as it relentlessly wraps inspirationally textured ingenuity around ears. If this is a hint to what we should expect with the band’s first album then roll on the short weeks to its arrival.

The self-released How to Salvage a Failing Butterfly is available worldwide from mid-October and Mercury on August 7th.

http://jugglingwolves.com

https://www.facebook.com/jugglingwolves/

9/10

RingMaster 02/07/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Quiet Marauder – Men

Quiet Marauder

     Exactly how good an album Men whilst engulfed by its epic mass of tracks it is hard to actually decide but as a compelling and persistently suggestive slab of fun there are no doubts about the debut album from Welsh band Quiet Marauder. It is a mass of musical and lyrical devilry, a persuasion of anti-folk which parades mischievous anarchy, humorously sculpted incites, and simple daftness across its continually engaging presence. The album is also the band’s attempt to enter the Guinness Book of Records for the longest debut album with 111 tracks. Made up of 4 CDs there are bound to be some ‘fillers’ in that intensive amounts of songs but even when the Bubblewrap Records released album does slip below the high standards set within its body, the tracks come with a charm and wit you can only embrace.

     Quiet Marauder is driven by the Cardiff based songwriting core of Simon M. Read and Jonathan Day with inspirations coming from the likes of The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Syd Barrett, Half Man Half Biscuit, Jeffrey Lewis, and The Fugs. Musically a collective of musicians with an array of sounds and equipment musical and kitchen, the band provides an encounter which is provocative and eccentric bordering crazed and fully evidenced by Men. Their previous self-released EP was a re-imagining of footballer Alan Shearer as a time traveller turned deity inhabiting humanity’s cultural memory after infiltrating all our collective history. Men also carries a concept, if less mad, through its imaginative lunacy, the four volumes of the album ‘charting the path of the male psyche through love, rejection, breakdown, madness, intoxication and, ultimately, resolution’. How much that comes over as you chuckle and roar at a great many of the songs and certainly contemplate most can be debated but as mentioned what is undeniable is the pleasure and frivolity which thrills the ears.

     How to describe Men… well imagine Irish acoustic band The Radioactive Grandma meeting Flight Of The Concords in a quiet-marauders-shortcreative maze with Television Personalities and The Goons, now you get the idea. Released in Wales at the tail of 2013 and in the UK this coming January 27th, it is impossible to cover the whole of the five hours offered so we will pick some of the best tracks on the release, or rather our definite favourites.  From the brief vocally cast opening title track of Vol. 1, the CD offering a parade of songs looking at the male psyche in the pursuit of love, second song The Language of the Body featuring Little Arrow strums out its temptation with acoustic caresses aligned to a melodica seduction. The united array of vocals is excellent, raising a smile with their mischief whilst the lead vocal has a riveting tone like an inebriated Bryan Ferry. The song coaxes the imagination and emotions perfectly and is not equalled again, despite some thoroughly enjoyable engagements, until the almost baroque tones of Love Is a Two Racquet Sport croons contagiously in the ear. Both I’m Sorry I Removed Your Eyes featuring John Mouse and Annabelle spark the passions to greater hunger, the first an energetic dance of jazzy invention and the second a swoon of clumsy romance within a smouldering acoustic enticement. As with all the best songs on the album you cannot help joining in with the chorus, cries, or silliness vocally and emotionally. The quirkily anthemic It Wasn’t Me, It Was The Moon, the hypnotically persuasive The Game featuring Hail! The Planes, and So It Went Like This…. all contest best track honours not only on the first volume but whole album, the last of the trio especially incendiary to feet and an emerging devilish appetite.

     The second volume dealing with a masculine reflective look at past failures which broaden to encompass greater issues is arguably not as strong as its predecessor or certainly does not offer up as many major highlights though again every track tickles and pleases in the right places. The Dancing Did reminding Daddy’s Watching Slugs, a minimalist rhythmic and vocal tempting with again seducing melodica, makes a wonderfully virulent teasing with an additional essence of Cardiacs too it whilst the brilliant I Want A Moustache, Dammit romps with and recruits the fullest passions for its irresistible and infectious melodic swagger. Both hit new pinnacles and maybe highlight the inadequacies of the less impressing ventures even if again it has to be confirmed that there are few if any tracks which leave you lacking any joy or satisfaction. Tesco Terrorism featuring Bensh is another prankish incitement of impish artistry which is immediately followed by the outstanding Impressive, a naggingly addictive stroll of vocal and melodic rascality. Though the second disc is not the strongest as suggested earlier it does provide some of the very best songs and example of the irreverently enthralling imagination and almost coltish ingenuity of the band. With mentions for the brilliant Young Knives like If We Were Playas with Houdini Dax guesting and Every Last Dinosaur with the addition of again John Mouse to its exceptional luring a must,  we move to the third and fourth volumes.

     CD three is the strongest of the four collections of songs. From the verging on psychotically mad second track Genes And A Good Name featuring Spencer McGarry the rib tickling evocations just keep coming with the likes of the Bertie Wooster like relish of I’m Beau Brummell And I’m Just Dandy and the Blade Runner tantalising of the cyber bred Do Androids Dream Of Electric Nonsense lighting new waves of hunger for the cunning lyrical and musical mastery at work. The sultry antics of the rampantly enticing Gin and Jazz lights more lofty flames of pleasure alongside the likes of the rapacious and shadowed antics lyrically unveiled by The Business Deal which includes Jimmy Watkins of Future Of The Left, a song with a St. Pierre Snake Invasion punk voice to it. More must mentions go to I Took Some Pills I Found On The Floor, Everyday Is A Good Day, and The Day The Animals Went Fuckin’ Crazy!, further gems amongst more than a few.

    The concluding CD is again arguably less flirty with big highlights but a stretch with a strong wash of inventive and fuller bodied songs. It also offers one of the most irritatingly addictive songs on the album in the smouldering yet impossible addictive presence of Naughty Nights, a potent slow burn of vocal knavery and melodic coaxing which worms under the skin and psyche to repeat like gassy wind at any given moment. Its lofty perch is admittedly challenged by subsequent tracks like Clever Quote From Mark Twain with Andrew Paul Regan helping out, and the delicious Every Time We Think Of One Another featuring Francesca’s Word Salad, but most of all from the gypstep waltz of Hello The Robotic Singularity, doom and partying all in one flight of invention as well as the world’s final conversation, Humanity’s Final Hour. To be honest favourites shift with every listen, as even whilst writing Imaginary Music with its Gary Numan and Are Friends Electric? seeding makes its claim, reminding just how many and irrepressible and thrilling songs are on Men.

    Featuring a flood of other guest artists in its midst, whether you can listen to the album in one swoop is debatable as at times repetitions of melodies and rhythmic sculpting is apparent to temper the effect of some, but you can certainly shape a vast array of different playlists to enjoy from its admittedly surprising excellence to only enjoy without restraint. At the start you cannot help expecting plenty of flab and flannel in an album of so many tracks but Quiet Marauder soon and constantly set those thoughts straight. A brilliant album…still not sure but an unreservedly enjoyable one there is no question and the easiest of recommendations to make.

http://www.quietmarauder.co.uk

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Quiet-Marauder/357156500982561

8.5/10

RingMaster 24/01/2014

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