The Jacques – Pretty DJ EP

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Like a hybrid infestation spawned from a mix of Babyshambles, Arctic Monkeys, and The Sugarcubes, The Jacques in one scintillating swoop has announced themselves as one of the UK’s most exciting newcomers. That potent introduction comes in the sensational shape of the Pretty DJ EP, a four track stomp of Britpop and pop punk infused with garage rock devilry, which from first to last breath inflames the imagination and incites the body.

Formed only in January of this year and consisting of two sets of brothers aged 16 to 21, The Jacques inspired by the sounds they were raised upon which included the likes of The Strokes, The Ramones, The Jam, The Lemonheads, and Elvis Costello, swiftly made their mark on the live scene. In a few brief months the Bristol hailing quartet of vocalist/guitarist Bonnie Jacques, guitarist Jake Edwards, bassist/vocalist Oli Edwards, and drummer Elliot O’Brien found themselves playing numerous festivals across the summer including Guilfest and at Hyde Park where they supported The Libertines and caught the attention of their drummer Gary Powell, the co-founder of 25 Hour Convenience Store, who signed them on the spot to the label which now uncages the band’s first irresistible offering.

Recorded at Rockfield Studios with Dan Swift, Pretty DJ opens with its title track and instantly ignites the imagination and appetite with an initial jangle of spicy guitar. With rhythms soon in tow, the song relaxes into a warm yet unpredictable stroll littered with quirky hooks, a rhythmic shuffle, and a richly persuasive bassline. It is potent bait especially when the distinct and unbroken vocals of Bonnie flirt with ears, his tones refreshingly unique and individually expressive even at a young age. The song proceeds to weave its salacious sonic curves and healthy rhythmic persuasion with raw and compelling seduction, every syllable and note brought with a dose of eclectic enterprise. It is a sensational first taste of the band and release which only inflames hunger the_jacques-pretty_dj-ep-2014-artwork-e1414933180481and passion for more with every twist in its armoury

The following Foreign Films has a more relaxed gait than the great agitated endeavour of its predecessor, but is no less virulent bait with its sultry melodies and a great vocal duelling between Bonnie and Oli. It is hard to look further than The Libertines as a spicy influence here, though equally there as whiffs of bands like Supergrass and Pulp at play too. The song also carries garage rock tenacity to its sonic and lively cosmopolitan temptation as it reveals a little more of the rich potential and imagination of the young band.

Scum In A Bottle also visits that garage rock breeding as well as a punk causticity which adds further tasty shades of endeavour to the release. Guitars spark and flame with raw charm whilst again the vocals tantalise with their seamless union and magnetic uniqueness. Littered with mouth-watering craft and creative revelry from the guitars and a pungent baiting from the intrepid rhythms, the track steals its own thick wedge of the rich praise building up inside waiting to shower the release, a portion matched by that garnered by the closing Weekends.

The final track swiftly has its temptation ingrained through an opening bass lure. Always a sucker for throaty enticing like this, the track had us gripped from its first second and only proceeded to increase its hold with tangy grooves and similarly tasty hooks across bracing swipes of sonic causticity. As with all the tracks, it is impossible for feet and vocal chords not to join its call, with pleasure in close quarters to their eagerness.

It is fair to say that The Jacques wear their influences on their sleeve but only as homage to those inspirations and as an invigorating hue to their own invention. The Pretty DJ EP is easily one of the highlights of the year and easy reasoning as to why Mr Powell leapt upon them within a breath of discovering their existence.

The Pretty DJ EP is available now via 25 Hour Convenience Store @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/pretty-dj-ep/id930507850

https://www.facebook.com/TheJacquesBand

RingMaster 12/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Glory Glory – So Long

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Seemingly holding a torch for eighties new wave and indie pop, Canadian band Glory Glory unveil their new tantalising EP, a release which mesmerises and tempts with a melodic seduction which is hard to find any resistance to. So Long is an encounter which makes a pleasing impression on first listen but evolves into an irresistible and essential breeze the more you allow it to stroke and coax the imagination. There is a smile to the music of the band which radiates incessantly from within the release, an enticing charm which caresses senses and thoughts whilst an understated but rich invention blossoms deep within the songs. It all adds up to a rich persuasion which maybe does not give its recipient a blood rush but certainly leaves them smouldering with content.

Hailing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Glory Glory was formed in 2006 with a sound which was said to be more post punk sculpted. They create a brew though which merges a wealth of styles and essences to defy any exact labelling, So Long just as its slightly rawer and darker predecessor, the You Need a Heart to Live EP of 2011, providing the richest evidence. The new three track proposition was mixed by Grammy nominated producer Justin Gerrish (Vampire Weekend, The Strokes), and pushes the band’s presence into an even greater potent spotlight which is sure to open up wider attention on the band. The trio of Adam Warren, Ryan Brown, and Gavin Maclean has already drawn references to the likes of Rush, Grizzly Bear, Caribou, and Twin Shadow their way but as So Long wraps its suggestive arms around the ears there is a definite feel of China Crisis and Scritti Politti to the offerings.

The first of those two comparisons is loud in opening track Take My Time. From its opening lure of dark bass tempting the track has GG coverintrigue and attention gripped and primed for the swiftly following tangle of guitar crafted melodies, they having a ABC whisper to them, and excited percussive endeavour. It is a gentle but lively start given extra warmth by the flowing mellow vocals and occasional backing harmonies. The song strolls with relish through the ears, casting a dream bred elegance and glaze over its captivating narrative, whilst a slight Two Door Cinema Club air adds to the textured beauty of the song.

The impressive start is backed up by the slower gaited but equally absorbing and immersive Indigo Son. The atmosphere of the song is part celestial and part sultry, its melodic romance nestling provocatively with thoughts whilst the poised joyful swagger of the song provides that Scritti Politti enticement to its enthralling textures. Though not as dramatically gripping as its predecessor, the song holds imagination and appetite firmly in its resourceful enterprise whilst providing a hazy climate to the emotively engineered suasion.

The closing Everybody Lies envelopes and dances with the senses much as the opening song, it’s certainly individual adventure wrapping a refreshing weave of invention and evocatively hued melodies around body and reflection like a graceful temptress, one as across all the tracks driven by a dance seeded pulsing and rhythmic ensnaring. Though much like the surface of the music lyrically everything seems a peaceful soar, beneath shadows and flirty twists play their part in trapping imagination and emotions. It is a clever and imaginative underbelly which only adds to the overall caressing whilst forging deep textures and colour to the songs.

Though So Long is the first we have heard of Glory Glory, a swift look at their previous and also thoroughly appealing EP shows the evolution in progress within the band’s songwriting and sound. It is an exciting emergence which is increasing its potential to spark a greedy anticipation for their forthcoming horizons. Glory Glory looks like being a band we are destined to hear and enjoy for a long time to come.

The So Long EP is available now @ http://gloryglory.bandcamp.com/

http://www.glorygloryband.com/

8/10

RingMaster 20/04/2014

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The Pulsebeats – Don’t Turn Your Fucking Back On Me 7”

The Pulsebeats

   It feels a long time since being introduced to the irrepressible Spanish miscreants The Pulsebeats through their debut self-titled album of late 2011. Across that distance though their lure and mischievous temptation has never waned, their release remaining a regular on the RR playlist. Its time though may have come to a ‘end’ as the riotous sounds of the Spaniards return in scintillating style with new 7” single and download, Don’t Turn Your Fucking Back On Me. Released via FOLC Records, it is a three song riot of punk bred rock ‘n’ roll which simply infects and incites full emotional and physical rebellion.

     Hailing from Santander, The Pulsebeats leapt at the world at the beginning of 2010, the quartet containing two experienced in rock ‘n’ roll from playing in The Vipers alongside another pair of musicians just as voraciously hungry and creatively energetic. As mentioned it was their debut album which sparked a keen appetite for the band, a thrilling and potential driven release which only suggested greater things to come, which the single is only too happy to confirm. Whereas the full-length had an infectious pop punk thrust to its garage punk and rock mayhem, Don’t Turn Your Fucking Back On Me reaps the contagious seeds of more caustic punk rock but without losing any of the trademark ridiculously catchy and insatiably addictive charm. Hooks and riffs aligned to a lyrical and passionate snarl once again steal the passions, but as always with The Pulsebeats fun is the order of the day and there is plenty of that thrashing around on the single.

    The title track makes the first thrust, its opening play of guitars moving into a strolling gait with a slight cowpunk lilt to its pulsebeats coverenergetic stance. The vocals step in next adding a raw punk attack to the infectious provocation with a garage punk breath also barging in on the raucous revelry as the song rolls out its irresistible stomp. It is a glorious sonic incitement opening up an attack on politicians and their neglect of the needy whilst lining their own pockets. The Pulsebeats may like to rock and rock hard but they are no wallflowers when it comes to dealing with society’s issues either.

     From the excellent start, the band shifts up the gears with firstly White Little Horse. The song unleashes an opening almost disorientating melee of beats and sonically sculpted guitar teasing ensuring attention is instantly wide awake. From there it settles into a riveting stroll laced with a great throaty bass line and jagged riffs, both courting the ever coaxing vocals amid the brewing mischief of the band. Garage punk with a pop spawned catchiness, the song flirts with the ears like a mix of The Stooges, Eddie and The Hot Rod, and Buzzcocks with an extra air of The Strokes; the blend happily leading imaginations into bad habits and emotions into lustful responses.

   The final track I’ll Let You Know brings addictiveness another potent dose of provocation as guitars jangle and clash teasingly with the senses whilst raw vocals, singular and on a united front, add discordant irreverence to the party. With a ridiculously virulent bass hook the prime protagonist for the passions within the sixties punk inspired blaze of guitar and attitude, not forgetting infection, the song is a mouthwatering and exhausting rampage which anyone would sell their souls for to create or simply enjoy.

    It has taken a while to see the return of The Pulsebeats  release wise but they have made that wait an insignificant niggle with easily their best fevered frenzy yet. Don’t Turn Your Fucking Back On Me is a magnificent beast of a riot again reminding us that The Pulsebeats is one of the finest inimitable exponents of vivacious multi-faceted rock ‘n’ roll.

http://www.thepulsebeats.org

http://thepulsebeats.bandcamp.com/album/dont-turn-your-fucking-back-on-me-7-single

9/10

RingMaster 12/03/2014

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Pink Mexico – Pnik Mxeico

Pink Mexico

More magnetic than Charlize Theron skinny dipping and as radiantly shimmering as the waters lapping around the lady’s body, Pnik Mxeico the debut album from Pink Mexico is simply an enthralling sonic glaze upon the senses. A vibrant brew of garage rock and indie pop with healthy essences of grunge, punk, and shoegaze kissed alternative rock, the release is a seductive hug which refreshes the senses and awakens the passions. It falls short of being a classic debut but hits the target dead centre with a thrilling and imagination igniting presence which tantalises and caresses with passion and adventure.

Pink Mexico is the solo project of former Anything But Animals drummer/vocalist Robert Preston, though recently and post album the band has grown in number with the addition of John Chambers. Attempting to “individually capture the sound he had been eager to achieve since pre-puberty”, Preston entered a Brooklyn ‘booze-drenched party basement studio’ with producer/musician Jon Granoff who engineered and mixed the subsequent recordings to emerge as Pnik Mxeico. Self-released by the Los Angeles hailing Preston earlier this year the album now gets its re-appearance through Fleeting Youth Records to charm all those who missed its first sonic caress of the world.

The album opens with Seabird and a sweet haranguing of riffs under soaring falsetto led vocals from Preston. Like a delicious mix of My Bloody Valentine, Jesus and Mary Chain, and Jane’s Addiction with loud whispers of Jan and Dean plus the Strokes, the song immediately taunts the passions to come out and play, which they do with eagerness as the song romps on with a scuzz lilted breath and riveting imagination. There is a familiarity to the song which subsequently pervades the whole release; a feeling of a previously met friend adorned with new melodic and sonic endeavour. The track is garage punk at its most contagious and diverse, a cloak of persuasion the following A Head Full of Slime is as happy with and as inventive in using. With a smaller stride than the opener but just as keen in its appetite to please, the song roams the senses with a mischievous air and vocal attraction which is irresistible.

Both Daisyface and Shrub Fuse continue the impressive start, the first parading a Nirvana like groove from the guitar aside effect clad, harmony kissed vocals and an anthemic rhythmic coaxing whilst the second adds extra garage punk causticity and a rhythmic battering to its sultry stomp of punk pop and shoegaze unity. With teasing keys adding extra devilry and temptation, the song romps with an elegant rabidity recruiting just as hungry reception from ears and heart. By this point on the album though all tracks have individual characters and presences there is a similarly bred and cast essence to their suasion which asks for that extra focus at times which songs and album undoubtedly reward richly for the effort with a full infectiousness to bask in.

The likes of Paperclip Toothpick with its smouldering heat and emotion, and the grunge spawned senses grazing Mold continue the album’s addiction sculpting lure, both almost insidious in their tempting suggesting the devil’s hand or promised souls are involved whilst Hussy Woofer parades a sixties pop flavouring which is often hinted at in previous tracks but has a full flame going here to again excite and inspire the imagination. Thoughts of a union of 13th Floor Elevators and the Everly Brothers comes to mind as the song dances rigorously within the ears as well as at times Black Rebel Motorcycle Club but for all the references sparked, Pink Mexico has a sound which stands uniquely to the band.

The closing acoustic and vocal kiss on the ear Not Alone brings the outstanding release to a potent close, its melodic caressing mesmeric and provocative. Pnik Mxeico is a luscious express of vocal and musical beauty with a raw breath and caustic edge which simply seduces the passions. Simply a must investigate release to end the year.

http://www.pinkmexico.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/flamingpinkmexico/

9/10

RingMaster 18/12/2013

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Roxanne De Bastion – The Real Thing

Roxanne

In an interview between us and singer songwriter Roxanne De Bastion held after the release of her riveting debut single Red And White Blood Cells, the artist when asked about her first album said it was a collection of songs with numerous characters and styles involved within their breath. The release of The Real Thing more than lives up to her words its wealth of evocative and emotive tracks taking their own individual journeys towards providing a constant richness of quality and pleasure. The single only hinted at the range of expressive depths and musical voices upon the album, the song itself a wonderful ‘cuckoo’ within a varied and captivating clutch of mesmeric ideas and songs.

Born and raised in Berlin, Roxanne moved to the UK after finishing school on a one-way ticket in 2007. The following years saw her continue to develop her craft and creativity whilst travelling all over the country to play shows , her nomadic approach to music giving her many musical bases and a strongly brewing following. As mentioned her first single drew great and potent responses from fans and media with its striking presence and made the anticipation for her first album eager and excitable. Released on her own Nomad Songs label, The Real Thing was recorded with producer Gordon Raphael (The Strokes / Regina Spektor) in Berlin and brings ten inspiring and graciously caressing songs to the passions. It is a release which also holds shadows within its vocal and emotional touch whilst the likes of Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Regina Spektor, and Judee Sill, just some of her potent  musical inspirations, are at times open whispers within her already unique stance.

The album catches the ear with 1964 first of all, its simple acoustic guitar and vocal union an upbeat smile upon the senses with a the_real_thing_coverknowing understanding of how to invite and seduce interest alongside the emotions without making an overstated entrance. The vocal harmonies bring extra warmth to the already wonderfully persuasive tones of Roxanne and though the whistling for personal preferences throws a slight unbalance to the flowing charm of the song, it is a brief aside before the track reasserts its compelling hold.

The following Here’s Tom With The Weather brings a slower walk across the ear, the guitar of Roxanne adding to the narrative painting of lyrics and vocals whilst the touch of the keys add light kisses upon the brow of the song. It is a delightful melodic embrace which sets up the appearance of new single Some Kind of Creature perfectly. The song has an even stronger folk pop lilt to its warm tones than with the earlier songs as well as an open sinew to the vocals and its energy. The Hammond sounds paint an emotive atmosphere behind and around the striking vocals whilst like the first and despite the strong shadows which makes suggestions within words and shaded corners of the track, it has a vibrant and lively stroll to its heart.

The raw Empty Space with its slightly smothered but effective sheltered sound makes way for the excellent Red And White Blood Cells. With a core presence which can be described as The Pixies meets Patti Smith with Belly and the Young Marble Giants adding their unique flavours, the song has a magnetic electric guitar tease stroke niggle which across the song builds and excites itself into a sonic crescendo of energy and eagerness whilst vocally Roxanne is like the angel and devil on the shoulder of the track stroking mischief and beauty with equal clarity. It stands wide apart from the other songs in its individuality and shows even stronger width to the variety at play from the artist.

Both The Life I Lead and Handwriting, in again individual ways, engage the ear and thoughts with accomplished craft and ease, as does the slightly plaintive Somewhere upon Avon before the pinnacle of the album steps forward for the greatest seduction of the release. My Shield begins with a subdued caress of vocals and guitar, the spine and impressive stance of all songs on the album, but then allows hearty beats to add their intriguing touch. At this point the piece certainly has senses and attention riveted but it is when the strings unveil their emotive beauty that a new rapture is ignited. The melancholic yet radiant voices of the cello and violin expand into even more potent wraps and aural beauty bringing every emotive essence from the lyrical narrative and vocal deliverance to irresistible witness.

Closing with the gentle cradle of the title track, The Real Thing is an enchanting and passion capturing treat. The songs recorded as a live capture reaping every ounce of emotive value and musical imagination from their hearts for a mix of styles which leave the purest satisfaction. A must listen from one impressive emerging talent.

http://www.roxannedebastion.com/

8/10

RingMaster 18/04/2013

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Roxanne de Bastion: Red & White Blood Cells

With an album on the horizon it is never a bad thing to tease the world with a track which is startling and unique from it before its arrival. This is just what singer songwriter Roxanne de Bastion has done with the song Red & White Blood Cells. Not only is it the first flavour from her upcoming debut, it is a track which you just cannot ignore or resist, an unpredictable barbed hook to lure one to her quirky sounds and an album which one can only assume will be the same.

Playing her first gigs at ten and writing her own songs at the age of 15, Roxanne set out on her own with guitar in hand from Berlin to London. Though not knowing anyone she was soon playing as many open mic nights, venues, and bars as she could and travelling the country via bus and trains to reach and perform  in as many places as possible. With a growing reputation she was soon being asked back to venues across the UK, Germany, and the United States. Her bio states heroes include John Lennon, Ray Davies, Bob Dylan, and Judee Sill, but as the song shows musically she reaps and blooms a sound which is distilled from varied distinctive sources twisted into her own simple and inciteful sound.

The track opens with a persistent guitar tease which threatens to niggle but instead offers an magnetic aural finger like beckoning which in its simplistic intent is irresistible. It is the perfect companion to the voice of Roxanne, her tones angelic and devilish at the same time. She croons whilst grabbing at words to deliver them with a bite yet soothing directness to have ear and attention only focused on her and the song. Whether representative of what her album will bring time will tell, but Red & White Blood Cells taunts the ear with a touch of The Pixies, Belly, and Young Marble Giants wrapped in the punk breath of Patti Smith and easily ensures the forthcoming album will be paid plenty of attention here.

Barely two minutes long the track ends on a crescendo of fiery guitar sonics and abrasive energy to complete the capture of imagination and enthused intrigue. Produced by Gordon Raphael (The Strokes / Regina Spektor), the track more than hints as to why Roxanne has found a firmly growing success and with the release of her album early next year you can only see her finding even greater ardour wrapping around her music.

Red & White Blood Cells is available for free download from http://roxannedebastion.bandcamp.com/track/red-and-white-blood-cells

http://www.roxannedebastion.com/

RingMaster 16/10/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

RKC (Roses Kings Castles) – British Plastic

British Plastic the new album from RKC ripples with the lo-fi DIY feel inspired by the late 70’s punk rise and the electronic pop sensibilities that followed. Ex- Babyshambles drummer Adam Ficek has created an adventurous and vibrant release that brings two eras into an undeniably engaging and unique union to bring some welcome nostalgia alongside thrilling new adventures.

Originally named as Roses Kings Castles, the name having been abbreviated recently, the band was first conceived in 2007 for songs that were too ‘odd pop’ for Babyshambles, the project to be an underground base for their emergence. A debut self titled album released via his own label, The Sycamore Club in 2008 received strong acclaim, as did the subsequent 2009 Apples & Engines EP and 2010 album Suburban Time Bomb. With British Plastic also via The Sycamore Club, there is an evolution not only in the reduction from being a six piece unit on its predecessor to all instrumentation coming from Ficek apart from lead guitar from former band mate in Babyshambles Patrick Walden, but also in a bigger and bolder adventurous sound.  

The album was recorded solely in Ficek’s makeshift home studio and I guess critics could claim a naivety and at times an undefined sound on the production but one would argue this adds to the instinctive and personal feel that a polished big studio treatment would have lost. The accompanying bio to the album comments that British Plastic is an ‘aural scuffle between The Buzzcocks and The Beta Band’s resurgent hero Steve Mason’ which is a very apt declaration especially on songs like ‘I Can’t Say’ which has a distinct Pete Shelley flavour to the melodies against the mesmeric electronics and pulses. There is much more to the music here though, many classic bands and sounds fused into modern touches and additives. This song epitomises everything that is British Plastic, its electronic pop recalling bands like early Depeche Mode, The Normal and especially The The, blending with the DIY of bands like The Television Personalities and the disquiet from the likes of The Strokes.

The tracks within British Plastic are varied with the only inconsistency coming from the best songs on the album being so good they show up the slightly ‘weaker’ ones. Opener ‘These Are The Days’ is a perfect start to the release, its pop tendencies and open sounds the perfect invitation into the album’s unique qualities. The song reminded of 80’s band King Trigger with its electronic flowing sounds surrounding natural melodies and rhythms; the bass is pretty tasty too.

The song ‘Here Comes The Summer’ has already garnered attention and airplay with its fuzzed up sounds, urgency and The Cure like pop laced with a grittier approach and completes a strong ‘awkward’ pop beginning to the album. The first single from the album ‘Kittens Become Cats’ follows next. A more subdued and soulful song but no less intriguing and satisfying though maybe a surprising choice as lead track to draw people in as good as it is.

Many highlights follow, the punk vibe of ‘People And Places’, the scuzzy air of ‘Seeds Of Moscow’, and the pulsating discordant experimental delights of ‘Tapping’ all play easily and with enterprise upon the ear. It is the quick fire incessant post punk drive of ‘Cockroach’ that takes the top dog award on the album. With essences of 80’s bands The Three Johns, Swell Maps and Wire mixed in with some The Mae Shi and The Pixies, the track is a wonderful hypnotic inflamed blast at life.

Fuelled by a feeling of anger and distrust the album is a thrilling and expressive release that shows real music does not need to be polished beyond recognition to be very satisfying and stunningly effective. The more one listens the deeper the attraction and love affair with British Plastic and RKC.

Check out the British Plastic @rkcmusic.bandcamp.com/releases

RingMaster 01/11/2011

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