Counting Coins – All That I Need

CC_RingMaster Review

It has been a hectic year so far for UK rockers Counting Coins; live shows and tours across the UK and Europe a source of great attention and praise for the band as well as recent single Don’t Look Down, and it continues with the unveiling of its successor. The second single taken from the Hull based quintet’s forthcoming album, All That I Need bobs along on ska bred riffs and devilish rhythms bound in spicy melodies that incite ears and imagination as potently as the equally effective vocal and lyrical incitement. It is one of those invitations impossible to refuse as it gives body and lust a rousing run out; simply one endearing and energetic romp of premeditated goodness.

artwork_RingMaster Review     Formed in 2009, Counting Coins has grown a seriously anthemic fusion of ska, gypsy punk, swing, and hip-hop over the years. From their first pair of EPs, Take the Ride and Reach for the Sky in 2010 and 2013 respectively, the band has shown a creative tenacity that wakes up the instinct to romp and stomp. Their live presence has only increased their reputation, the sharing of stages with bands such as Random Hand, Sonic Boom 6, The New Town Kings, The Talks, Jaya the Cat, Babar Luck (ex-King Prawn), The King Blues, The JB Conspiracy, and Neville Staple adding to an increasingly acclaimed reputation. A few weeks back Don’t Look Down had bodies of fans and media jumping around physically and in praise, a repeated success well within the creative grasp of All That I Need.

Opening on a lone and instantly enticing guitar, the bass soon adding its exploits, the track is quickly swinging along with a melodic smile and rhythmic temptation. The vocals of Harry Burnby just as swiftly bring another strain of infectious enterprise, his bouncy delivery matching that of strings plucked by Matty Dennison and Rob Green. In full stroll, like The Beat meets Reel Big Fish but with more variety to its hues, All That I Need swaggers with joyful tenacity as flames from trumpeter Will Chalk blaze over the throaty lure of bass and the keen swipes of drummer Sam Burnham.

It is an easy going proposal offered by the song but a virulently captivating one which has feet jumping, vocal chords exercised, and emotions flying with the outstanding encounter. The last Counting Coins single meant that interest of the band’s new album was thick and now with All That I Need doing the tempting, and with a great video in tow, anticipation is full and a touch impatient.

All That I Need is available from November 23rd across a global range of digital platforms including iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Music and Deezer.

https://www.facebook.com/CountingCoins   https://twitter.com/counting_coins

Pete RingMaster 23/11/2015

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The Sneaky Nixons – Sex

LisaJamie_RingMaster Review

UK band The Sneaky Nixons describe themselves “as an angry, semi-political, semi-religious, part-feminist sloppy activist group who play riotous, steam-train guitar music.” From one song alone much of that is maybe not so obvious but there is no denying that new single Sex is one mighty vehicle of mass seduction. Sauntering through ears in a flirtation of punk, ska, rock ‘n’ swing, and vaudevillian theatre, the song is a confrontational mischief on ears and imagination, and quite bewitching.

HFartwork-2_RingMaster Review     Taken from the forthcoming eponymous compilation album from Across the Ocean Waves Productions, which features the most exciting bands active on Liverpool’s vibrant music scene, Sex is a slice of rock ‘n’ roll to incite and inflame. It follows a clutch of singles released this year and The Coup de Grace EP which spawned most of them, each offering tracks which reveal a different strain of The Sneaky Nixons’ sound with Sex the most devilishly impressive of the lot so far.

The single strolls in on stabbing riffs and crisp beats beneath a sultry sky lit by the blazing temptation of brass. Settling into a gentler canter initially, with a touch of Brit pop and alternative rock to the melodies and vocals, the track is soon rising up to eye ball the listener with its creative revelry and punkish intent, both bound in more of the thick ska bred infectiousness.

Like Libertines meets The Talks meets The Vox Dolomites, Sex is an aurally salacious treat with a hard hitting video to inflame the senses further, and another mightily impressive step in the rise of The Sneaky Nixons’

Sex is released November 20th via Across the Ocean Waves Productions @ https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/the-sneaky-nixons/id967240246

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Pete RingMaster 20/11/2015

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Counting Coins – Don’t Look Down

CC_RingMaster Review

Here is another band we could kick ourselves for not discovering before now, well we will once we stop bouncing to their glorious new single. They are Counting Coins, a UK band which in one breath you might call ska, in another gypsy punk, in another…well you get the idea, and their new release is Don’t Look Down, a song destined to turn venues, festivals, and the world into a heaving mass of bodies.

cover_RingMaster Review   The Hull hailing Counting Coins formed in 2009 and it seems took little time in exciting crowds locally before drawing broader attention through debut EP Take the Ride in 2010. With its successor, the Reach for the Sky EP three years later even more successful, the band were soon and hungrily since, lighting up venues across the UK and into Europe, sharing stages with the likes of Random Hand, Sonic Boom 6, The New Town Kings, The Talks, Jaya the Cat, Babar Luck (ex-King Prawn), The King Blues, The JB Conspiracy, and Neville Staple along the way. Equally performances at festivals such as Boomtown, Rebellion, Tramlines, Galtres, and Freedom Festival have only drawn acclaim and seen the band’s reputation gain momentum. With new single Don’t Look Down constantly in our ears alongside a retrospective investigation of Counting Coins, it is easy to see and hear why the quintet of vocalist Harry Burnby, guitarist/bassist Matty Dennison, bassist/guitarist Rob Green, drummer Sam Burnham, and trumpeter Will Chalk are so lustfully supported.

As mentioned at the top, the band’s sound is a weave of styles; ska, punk, gypsy, and hip hop aligned and entangling in Don’t Look Down alone. A brief rally of beats introduces the magnetic flames of brass, they enticing choppy riffs, a pulsating bassline, and the resourceful and magnetic lures of Burnby, his voice just as eagerly backed across the band. The ska swagger of the song is pure temptation, feet and hips soon in tandem, vocal chords a swift addition too. Around them though, the song seamlessly slips in flames of reggae, ska gypsy, and more, it all managing to collude to breed a swing like dynamism. With elements of dub and folk, tango and waltz, and at one point we swear steam punk, the track just continues to roll and twist like a melodic acrobat as it takes the listener and passions on a heady and exhausting ride.

Single of the year contenders is a list longer than a queue on Black Friday and now it is one song richer, an incitement which has more or less jumped the line to stand to the fore of 2015 essential treats.

Don’t Look Down is out now as a digital download on All Our Own Records.

https://www.facebook.com/CountingCoins  https://twitter.com/counting_coins

Pete RingMaster 02/10/2015

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Grassroutes – Subliminal

Grassroutes pic 2

Breathless and basking in a ska shaped incitement which never tires however it comes, we eagerly suggest checking out the new single from UK rockers Grassroutes. Drawing on the ska/ indie fusion which goes to good use by numerous bands, the Leamington Spa quintet give it their own unique flavouring and rampancy to leave ears excited and knees buckling under the weight of the enthusiasm it inspires. Subliminal is a devilment, an insatiable persuasion which if you have a penchant for ska and the likes of Madness, The Vox Dolomites , and The Talks all rolled up into one new adventure, the closest we can come up with to describe their sound, then Grassroutes is for you.

There is plenty more to the Grassroutes sound to that suggested above of course, one additional spicing maybe coming from the Jamaican descent of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Jay Hall and certainly through his reggae inspirations. Linking up with lead guitarist Ben Knight, a long time school friend, the pair started indie rock band The Royal Players. It was the seed and gateway to the emergence of Grassroutes, with line-up changes over the years subsequently bringing bassist Justin Bygrave, keyboardist/guitarist Levi Washington, and drummer Jimmy Barnwell into the band’s fold. Year and a half on from its start, the band is still earning a potent reputation for their live performances and now working on their debut album, to which Subliminal is a teaser Grassroutes - Subliminalalready brewing up impatient anticipation in some quarters.

The first breath of the song brings an earthy bassline and charming melodies cast by guitars and keys. It is a catchy entrance enhanced further by the slightly gravelly tones of Hall and an increasingly stronger swing to the song which infects bass, riffs, and keys alike with every second. An anthemic chorus with full band vocal participation sparks another wave of rich pleasure; its punk lined revelry flirted with by great Mike Barson like mischievous and infectious keys. It all combines for slavery of feet and emotions. A bustling riot and temptation of sound is never an offering to turn away, but especially in a track like this where from its infectious and relatively restrained moments, it ignites with increasing virulence on its way to an exhilarating climax.

Listening to Subliminal again and again, a whisper of King Prawn shows itself within the single, a scent which can only ever be a good thing at any time though again like all colouring it only adds to a proposition which is solely Grassroutes. The single is primed to set the year alight, to bring the summer in early though thoughts and emotions are left with just one thing to say…bring on the album.

Subliminal is available from Feb 9th.

https://www.facebook.com/grassroutesband

RingMaster 03/02/2015

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The Talks – Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves

The Talks 2014 photo SJM 2 landscape

You may have already found your feel good encounter of 2014 but it is never a bad thing to keep looking right up to the closing days, especially when as winter opens its eyes you get a treat as irresistible as Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves, the new album from UK ska rockers The Talks. Bringing eleven tracks to infest feet, the body, and the imagination, the release is a stomp of addictive revelry which cannot fail to put a smile on the face and emotions.

Since the release of their debut single Picture This in 2008, The Talks have been on a steady climb with the past couple of years seeing a fevered acceleration of attention for their fusion of ska, punk, reggae, and two-tone. First album Live Now Pay Later! in 2012 awoke a fresh spotlight on the Hull quartet which last year’s Westsinister E.P and singles Can Stand The Rain, which featured Neville Staple from The Specials, and Friday Night swiftly pushed to new levels. Alongside the releases, the band’s live presence has been just as dynamic in garnering acclaim and luring the passions, the foursome of Patrick Pretorius (vocals/guitars/sax), Jody Moore (vocals/guitars/keys), Iain Allen (bass), and Richard Lovelock (drums) sharing stages with the likes of Madness, The Specials, Rancid, The Beat, and The King Blues, as well as playing festivals such as This Is Ska, Mighty Sounds, and Rebellion over time. The previous EP was a highly anticipated encounter with Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves finding itself more eagerly awaited, and again the band has surpassed hopes and expectation with their contagious exploits.

The band’s sound lies somewhere between the provocative roars of The Vox Dolomites, the punk causticity of The Members, the melodic reggae and ska charms of By The Rivers and The Beat respectively, and the virulent devilment of The Jellycats. It is a proposition though which whilst embracing familiar essences develops its own unique devilry as swiftly shown with album opener Don’t Look Behind You. The initial warm embrace of keys has ears and thoughts engaged immediately, especially as riffs chop and rhythms start leaping as keys open up a new inventive flirtation whilst the pulses and strokes of the song work on the passions. Loaded with bait feet cannot resist, the song spreads its seduction further with the mischief of vocals and bass alongside the jagged majesty of guitar stabs, hooks, and beats.

The brilliant start is emulated instantly by recent single Radio, an insatiable two tone fuelled escapade with the delicious whiff of The Selector to it. Within moments its chorus is leading the Picture 156anthemic stroll, the song’s swagger as virulent as the brass flames and exotic keys colouring it. There is a punkish air to the vocals which again reminds of The Members whilst the punchy rhythms consume the vivacious dance of the encounter like an epidemic. The track is aural addiction, a breath-taking protagonist of body and emotions leaving a tall order for the following Tear Us Apart to match up to. With sultry keys and warm harmonies its first breath, the song is soon stirring up ears and imagination with its reggae bred enterprise and melodic summer. It mesmerises with its caressing canter of sound, reminding of fellow Brits Shanty as it floats and immerses the senses in its mouth-watering adventure.

Both Fire and Ceasefire keep the thrills ablaze, the first a muscular slab of ska provocation with bulky bass lines and feisty riffs pouncing on ears with antagonistic intensity and infectious rigour. The track has its nostrils flaring from the first second but the increasingly impressive vocal melodies and dramatic brass hues tempers the roar for another riveting big boned incitement; think King Prawn meets Lazy Habits and you are somewhere near the potency of the song. Its successor which features Jonny ‘Itch’ Fox of The Kings Blues, is an immediate blur of sonic drama and rhythmic provocation, a great dirty baseline aligned to agitated beats the frame for combative vocals and smouldering melodies. Teasing with dub enterprise over a ska crafted canvas, the track bounces with confrontation and climatic resourcefulness, every twist a striking reward for ears and a spark for thoughts to match the lyrical impact.

The gentle warmth and catchy romance of Light Up replaces the previous exhilarating tension of its predecessor, the swaying proposition a melody rich call with keys and harmonies embracing another irrepressible earthy bass temptation. Its masterful charm and joy is followed by the pop punk infused All in a Day, the band regaling the album with yet another thrilling slice of diverse and creative magnetism. A mix of Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish but unique again, the song bounds along with a recognisable air around a creative humidity which fires up into an irresistible persuasion, especially once the outstanding escape of deranged keys occurs.

It is a track, as all to be fair, which feet and voice of the listener are unlikely to resist, a lure across the album which is no more inescapable as in the brilliant Hacks. New wave soaked pop punk meets the spicy flirtation of Bad Manners, the track is an ingenious enslavement of ears and passions based on a ridiculously captivating rhythmic enticing and spicy guitar tempting, all matched in expression and allurement by the punchy vocals. The song tells you all you need to know about The Talks, their inflamed imagination and diverse sound, it all encapsulated in two minutes of instinctively seductive alchemy.

The equally thrilling Tune In steps up next to seize the passions, its opening jangle of chords the lead into a melodic coaxing straight out of the Martha and The Muffins songbook ,which in turn shares its space with swipes of feisty rock and ska sculpted endeavour. As punk as it is ska and adrenaline fuelled rock pop, the song stalks ears with a predacious ingenuity before making way for the smoky presence of Sam, reggae and indie rock embracing in a humid embrace, which in turn leaves for final track Alright with Me to close things up. The last song has blues flair to its keys and a choppy texture to the guitar enterprise shaping the expressive musical narrative, a transfixing croon to bring the album to a fine end and show yet more of the variety and creative depths of The Talks.

It is impossible to listen to Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves just once in one sitting, and certain tracks many more times on top. As stated at the start it is a feel good album but more than that, it is a release from a band to which invention and uncompromising adventure is as instinctive as the rapturous infectious sounds they seem to have stockpiled up inside them.

Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves is available now via All Our Own Records now @ http://www.thetalks.co.uk/store/4575625721

http://www.thetalks.co.uk

RingMaster 25/11/2014

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The Talks – Radio

the talks pic

It is never hard to get feet and passions up for a healthy infectious dose of ska punk and it does not come in any finer form of potency than Radio the new single from UK quartet The Talks. An irresistible toe tapping escapade with the vitality of The Selector, the addictive prowess of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, and the irrepressible invention of The Specials, the single ignites the imagination and passions with sublime efficiency whilst breeding a boisterous hunger for not only itself but the band’s highly anticipated forthcoming album Commoners, Piers, Drunks and Thieves. One song does not make an album but if the rest of the exploits are half as enslaving and potent as Radio than a heady ride is coming our way.

Since forming Hull’s The Talks has built and earned a strong reputation for sound and presence across not only the UK but Europe. Their sharing of stages with the likes of The Specials, Rancid, Madness, The Beat, King Blues, and The Toasters has only put the quartet of Jody Moore, Pat Pretorius, Iain Allen, and Richard “Titch” Lovelock into increasingly intensive spotlights. It has been a recognition reinforced and enhanced by their releases; the 2012 single Can Stand The Rain which featured the legendary Neville Staple easily marking the cards of a great many whilst last year’s West Sinister EP took things to greater levels of attention and support. The band’s last single Don’t look behind you pushed it all on again, its success leading to slots at festivals such as Boomtown and Camden Rocks at home and the Sapi Festival in France and the Fusion Festival in Germany.

The new album is the source of the next great hunger sure to be inspired by the band, greed set to be intensified with the rampant appearance of Radio. The single instantly casts a rhythmic coaxing and melodic bait to be pounced upon with feverish energy, an entrance swiftly exploding into a magnetic canter of irrepressible enticement through keys and guitar stabs under the great anthemic singular and group lure of vocals. As all good ska fuelled emprises, the track holds a riveting swagger which is as anthemic to feet and passions as the punchy rhythms framing the whole dance. Complete with flames of brass and constantly seducing keys, the track is an epidemic stride of sound and melodic magnetism with just that edge of punk belligerence.

Radio is a song for steamy climates and floor quaking dancehalls, a celebration to indulge in time and time again alone or in a crowd as we wait the next rigorously intriguing and sure to be majestic exploit from The Talks.

Radio is available on All Our Own Records now digitally and on LTD Edition 7″ Vinyl.

http://www.thetalks.co.uk/

9/10

RingMaster 30/06/2014

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