Union Jack – Supersonic

uxj_RingMasterReview

It has been twenty years since Paris hailing Union Jack first stomped around with their anger fuelled, ska infested punk ‘n’ roll, a celebration marked by the release of a brand new slab of infectious aggression. Supersonic is the trio’s seventh full-length, a stonking riot driven by the band’s familiar yet individual sound which simply hits the spot dead centre.

Across six albums and a host of EPs, Union Jack have honed their sound into one intrusively virulent proposal, a strain of punk rock with catchiness as potent as its irritability at the world. Live it has ignited hordes of fans, earning the band a big reputation across their homeland, into Europe, and Canada while sharing stages with the likes of The Damned, DOA, UK Subs, Leftöver Crack, Swingin Utters, Subhumans, The Aggrolites, The Movement, Inner Terrestrials and many more. Even so, they still may be an unknown quality to a great many, something that Supersonic should amend.

Recorded at Sofa Studio with RomTomCat, mixed and mastered by Mike Major ( At the Drive-in, Sparta, Coheed And Cambria, Gone is Gone), and with additional contributions on certain songs by Thomas Birnbacher (upright bass/organ), Phillipe Cattafesta (piano/organ), and Joe Robinne (organ), Supersonic grabs ears from its first breath. Cynical Sound Club starts things stomping, a brief introduction urgently loaded with wicked hooks and punchy rhythms as the band gathers all its wiles ready for next up Oh Boogie. The second track bounces around with attitude and aggressive energy tempered by the warm touch of an organ. The mischievous bassline is irresistible, riffs spice for the ears while the twin vocal attack of guitarist Tom Marchal and bassist/pianist Rude Ben are intrusive ringleaders in the magnificent raw and wild melody hooked romp.

Wordaholic has an even rawer air to its character and presence, Antoine Sirven Gabiache’s swinging beats leading the way as vocals and grooves leave lingering imprints on the senses and psyche. Like a mix of  Swingin’ Utters and Faintest Idea, the song brawls and flirts with the listener, showing recognisable essences while uncaging its own antagonistic delights before Blackout unveils choppy riffs and slapping beats as again the excellent unity between the band’s contrasting vocals bring their own magnetic clamour to the catchy ire pumped mix. Both tracks use the body like a puppeteer, resistance to their swinging rhythms and wicked hooks pointless though each is over shadowed a touch by the punk rock roar of Boomerang. Stalking ears with a predacious bassline, enslaving them with the tangiest hooks as vocals entangle participation in their physical and emotional affray, the track is glorious; a Billy Talent like spicing added pleasure.

art_RingMasterReviewNext up Purple Pride offers a melodic core not too far removed from its predecessor’s and indeed the track lacks the same incendiary spark but still has pleasure and appetite greedy with its raw punk ‘n’ roll belligerence while the bubbly but sonically raw assault of Human Zoo straight, also just missing out on the heights of earlier songs, is still nothing less than fiercely enjoyable with its unpredictable nuances and twists.

Bitter Taste shows a calmer nature as keys and melodies swing with a summery energy though still Union Jack drive it with an instinctive aggression which commands attention. Another song which easily has feet and hips in tandem and the spirit railing against the world; it is one fun and impressive warm up for the album’s best track. Don’t Look Back swiftly steals favourite spot, laying the seeds with its psychobilly nurtured bass slaps and sealing the deal with its Tiger Army like groove. From there the band’s punk heart drives the thrills; ska licks and senses rapping beats as well as elements reminding of bands like The Vox Dolomites and The Peacocks treats in the track’s heady swing.

Through the raucously catchy skirmish of Summer Waves, a song with a Buzzcocks like hook to lick lips over, and the ska infested rock ‘n’ roll of The Globe, the captivating aural roughhousing only sparks new waves of pleasure. The underlying variety in the album’s sound is also further highlighted though You and I returns to the more expected Union Jack musical ruckus with no complaints offered. It still springs a smart web of melodies and hooks though to stand apart with a Biting Elbows like rock/punk invention adding extra spice to its scrap.

It is an essence which also infests the excellent Bones, a coincidental similarity to the just mentioned Russian band no bad thing as the song twists and turns with quarrelsome anthemic chest beating before slipping away for Hate To Say Goodbye to close things off, the slither of music a reprise to that first welcome by Supersonic.

The album is a real joy deserving the attention of all those with an appetite for ska punk and punk rock in any guise.

Supersonic is released February 1st on Beer Records in collaboration with Guerilla Asso, Old Town Bicyclette, and Riot Ska Records for the UK, and through https://unionjack.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/badska/

Pete RingMaster 01/02/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

https://facebook.com/TheSneakyNixons

Pete RingMaster 20/11/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Los Brigands – Nothing’s Clean

LB_RingMaster Review

We had limited knowledge of Los Brigands up to this point in time but that is about to change and for a great many others no doubt, thanks to the might of their debut album Nothing’s Clean. Co-released with Crowd Control Media, the sixteen track stomp is an incendiary brawl of punk rock in its varied forms and devilry. It is quite simply rousing undiluted rock ‘n’ roll which just hits the sweet spot and can only push the band to greedier, broader spotlights hereon in.

Hailing from Los Angeles, the trio of vocalist/bassist Aroldo, guitarist/vocalist Hector, and drummer Keith have become one of the staples of the LA punk scene since forming in 2009. Inspirations come from the depths of hardcore but as their first full-length shows, the band is unafraid to add and twists things to embrace a host of distinctive styles and flavours within their songs. Back home they are a loyally supported outfit renowned for their high energy shows and catchy incitements of sound. Now with the unleashing of the sabre like charge of Nothing’s Clean, sixteen songs in thirty four minutes, Los Brigands look set to become a name on a much broader expanse of enthused lips.

     The Haters’ Circle starts things off, the track a thickly enticing instrumental slice of psychobilly/punk which alone has body and emotions ignited and ready to feast, which they greedily do on its successor. Like Dead Kennedys meets Tiger Army, the opener brings its two minutes plus to the boil perfectly, making way for the similarly bred but hardcore driven 8 50. Hooks and rhythms are a hungry enticement whilst the vocals roar and brawl to match the addictive impact of the sound around them. For less than a minute and a half, the track incites ears and appetite, and for that same length whilst embracing familiar inspirations and essences, the punk rock passions are aflame, burning greedily for what is to follow.

losbrigandsnothingcleanalbumart_RingMaster Review   10 Times Worse is the first to step up with pulsating beats and a throbbing bassline aligned to ska bred enterprise. The song continues to swing along with infection lining its thick lures and chorus, its body an irresistible mix of UK band The Vox Dolomites and [Spunge] and leaving lips licked and a ripe want for more. The following Robbie does not provide more of the same flavour but is instead a highly agreeable Los Brigands take on Johnny B Goode which leaves rich satisfaction in its wake before the Spanish sung Algun Dia provides a Clash like stirring of ears and energy; its hard bounce another lifting the listener to feet amidst anthemic calls.

Things only get tastier as the belligerent ska brawl of Cold Cold City escapes the album next, it’s bruising attitude and prowess another spark to ignite the passions for the release with a success emulated and indeed eclipsed by the outstanding Dead American Dream. With a feisty tinge of street punk to its tempestuous swagger and defiance fuelled attitude, the song is as spiky as it is infectiously virulent whilst On The Wall straight after, dips into some raw pop punk revelry with a Rancid meets The Bouncing Souls proposition to outshine much around it as impressive though they all are.

The opening volley of beats from Keith straight away puts Downtown Nights on a pedestal to expect big things from, the swiftly rapacious riffs which swoop in not letting anyone down, or the snarling vocals and energy flooding the great confrontation. It is a raging force continuing in the excellent blaze of Fight Fire With Fire and true to form anthems come one after another within Nothing’s Clean but few incite participation as effortlessly as this excellent aggression.

As you will have guessed, variety across the album is rife and provides another colourful shade of adventure through the caustic ska romp of Broke, guitars and sax especially fruity against the growl of the vocals and the brooding bass tone cast by Aroldo. That fluid diversity creates another appealing contrast as the grouchy bellow of First 48 springs its contagious old school punk irreverence on the passions before it has to make way for Bumming Cigs and its bluesy rock ‘n’ roll canter which has all bouncing in their chairs, on their feet, and in the streets on personal experience.

Denver Ave has a feel of Russian punk rockers Biting Elbows to its more relaxed but spicy and increasingly agitated presence next, its magnetic tenacity and creative bait getting body and soul excited ready for Bad Vibes to exploit with its furious tempest of boisterous riffs alongside antagonistic rhythms, they bounding around another steely bass sound to get lusty over. It is the home straight on the album and both tracks are nothing less than impressive and addictive as they steer ears towards the finale that is Last One, a last bracing arousal of ears and enjoyment honed into a tangy and furious anthem.

Major surprises on Nothing’s Clean are not dramatic or regular but with a freshness and passion few bands can contemplate let alone match, Los Brigands has provided one of our favourite slabs of rock ‘n’ roll this year. After this the band deserves to be a big blip on all punk rock radars of fans and media alike.

Nothing’s Clean is available now through Crowd Control Media.

https://www.facebook.com/Los-Brigands-319521674436

Pete RingMaster 29/09/2105

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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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

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from http://www.thereputationlabel.today

 

The Vox Dolomites – Self-Titled

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British punk has been at a feisty high for a couple of years now and just gets more potent which each emerging band and release. At the heart and criminally not getting the attention deserved is The Vox Dolomites, a quartet which turns the seeds of punk rock and ska into lyrically and musically gripping dramas. Their songs and EPs have proven the band has an instinctive knack at inciting feet and thoughts with energy and skill. Just recently the Stockport based band released their self-titled debut album, a release which surely will finally draw the keenest spotlight upon their presence.

Formed in2011, The Vox Dolomites is a tenacious and voracious creative stomp driven by guitarists/vocalists Ant Walsh and Will Farley, bassist/vocalist Chris O’Donnell, and drummer Simon Dunnington. The band soon grabbed attention, including ours, with the release simply called First Demo 2012. Their introduction was a blaze of punk and ska revelry which instantly made with its raw and inventive presence, an instant and lingering impression. It was a success subsequently emulated by tracks like No Split Ends and the Down For Three / Joan & Frank single of 2013. Live too the band has earned a renowned reputation for their ferocity of sound and drive, playing acclaimed shows not only at home but across the globe where especially in Japan, the band is feverishly devoured. This was no more evident than in The Dirty Work Tour 2012 movie which came out last year. Filmed by Chalkman Video it honestly followed the band on tour out East, revealing everything about the connection between band and their fans. Working hard on their first album through the first half of 2014, The Vox Dolomites has now opened the cage to a stomping release which declares that the band has hit their sweet spot creatively and unleashed their most adventurous and eclectic songs yet.

Choppy riffs make an instant potent tempting as opener Backtrack steps forward, their lure accentuated by the stroke of piano which sparks a flavoursome stroll of shadowed bass and keys wrapped in expressive melodies. A breath is swiftly taken before vocals and songs rouse up the imagination with their spicy enterprise and punk tenacity. It is a riveting mix, raw punk and melodic rock colluding for an infectious proposition equipped with essences of Rancid and NOFX for extra flavour. Making a striking start to the album, the richly pleasing track is surpassed by the outstanding Battle Scars, a feisty roar with thicker sinews and predatory intent compared to its predecessor, cored by the gripping throaty bass of O’Donnell amidst an acidic blaze of guitar. One of the band’s early songs which graced a previous EP, the track has been revamped and given a new antagonistic tenacity so it stomps as a new beast

Both Down For 3 and Alone In Mexico keep the adventure and quality of the album flying, the first of the two a ska rock dance with the crisp beats of Dunnington coring a flirtatious bass enticement and the radiant devilry of keys. Vivacious and exhaustive for feet and emotions, the song is a virulent bounce infused with sixties garage rock seduction and insatiable melodic charm. The second of the pair explores a sterner old school punk attitude and sound, the switching of two vocal attacks an alluring graze to compliment the similarly harsh sounds. The song still develops an imposing catchiness though which is as irresistible as the brooding fury within its depths and narrative.

The brilliant No Split Ends comes next, a pop punk provocateur with ferocity to its jangling riffs and punch to its intimidating rhythms. Again the busy energy and intensity of the track is a breath-taking onslaught but also it is ripe with a seriously addictive lure and temptation which snarls as it seduces. As the previous older song, the track has been revitalised and twisted into an even greater slice of punk alchemy to take top song honours and reinforce reasons why those in the know wax lyrical about the band.

As mentioned there is strong and highly pleasing variety to the album as shown by the melodic and hard rock infused 6AM Rain. Fiery but simultaneously a gentler stroll, the track comes with skilled melodic endeavour and blues rock imagination whilst still showing its punk breeding. Whereas the previous song had a sense of Russian punks Biting Elbows and also [Spunge], this whispers a calm Turbonegro and Bad Religion fusion whilst still sounding distinct to the Brits. Without sparking as certainly its predecessor, the track is an intriguing and pleasing different side to the band’s evolving sound, as is the more ruggedly bruising ALA where again heavier rock riffs and that increasingly delicious carnivorous tone of bass bind attention and appetite. The stirring and muscular brawl of punk ‘n’ roll is an inescapable imposing setting up the passions perfectly for the impossible addictive Horrorshow. Ska punk with a growl to vocals and riffs tempered by the melodic seducing of keys, the track is one of those stomps which once infested by never leave thoughts and passions. Bands like Face To Face and Operation Ivy have helped drive the style of music employed, but whether either has crafted a track as potent and irresistible as this is debateable.

I Fought The Lawyer brings us back to old school punk fury with Clash like attitude within raw rock ‘n’ roll whilst the gnarly Kojak With A Kodak with stabbing riffs and a rumbling bass lining, takes ears into yet another new aspect in the band’s punk ingenuity and exploration. A slow burner compared to other songs on the album, even with its eager gait, the track reveals itself to be a fascinating and richly creative persuasion unveiling a little more to its depth and lure with every listen.

The album goes out with a bang through firstly the mouth-watering aggressive stomp of Break Down The Walls, the song another long-term lust in the making, and lastly the ridiculously contagious and body igniting Losing Hands. Punk does not come any better than these last two songs, well apart from the other tracks on this excellent rampage of an album. It seems we are praising The Vox Dolomites more and more with every release and there is no reason to change with this seriously impressive album. They are a band which deserves the keenest spotlight and hopefully now they have found the trigger to such attention and recognition.

The Vox Dolomites is available now via STP Records @ http://www.stprecords.co.uk/page4.htm on CD with a vinyl version scheduled for 2015.

http://www.thevoxdolomites.com

RingMaster 06/11/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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Exploring the eye of the lens: an interview with Carl Arnfield of Chalkman Video

Chalkman guitar

We first came across Chalkman Video through videos and a film they made with UK punk band The Vox Dolomites. It has been impossible not to be increasingly impressed at the discovery of more of their work and videos uncovered in our investigation. Wanting to learn more ourselves we thought we would bring you an insight into one of the emerging protagonists in music video by stealing time of and talking with the creator of those potent visuals.

Hello, welcome to the site and thanks for sharing time with us.

First question has to be just who is Chalkman?

Carl Arnfield, at first I didn’t want to be seen as a single person filming/editing, so I used a name to work behind, which means if other people are involved it’s still the name they see and not individuals.

What were your early inspirations growing up which you think led you into your love of and work with film?

It’s more to do with cameras and seeing the world via them in macro / wide angle / fish eye. I’m a nerd when it comes to cameras I love using them.

If I had to say what inspired me to see what is possible via film/cameras it was when a video company called “Sitcom Soldiers Ltd” filmed a band I was in and watching how they worked changed everything about how I work and create my videos…I owe them a massive thanks. They still help me with problems with lighting and understanding the process…Which proved to me that knowledge should be passed on and not kept jealously to ourselves. Everyone uses a camera in a different way so knowledge isn’t going to make people copy your work if you pass it on; it gives them a tool to create their own work.

When did you make the decision to try and make this art form your career?

It’s six years ago now when I couldn’t find anyone to make videos for my bands … so I started making my own videos, and then it was a logical step to create our bands videos.

You mentioned you were in a band, are you as able and talented with other art forms, music for example as behind the camera?

I play several instruments and a few people will be aware of the bands I’ve been in, but I guess most will not, so from punk to metal and all the way to electronica to folk, it’s all music to me and when you on stage you are performing no matter if it’s a guitar or mandolin.

We know you for your music videos, especially the excellent Vox Dolomites film which we will talk about later. Is there another angle to your portfolio, short films for example for us to discover?

Yes, I’ve done a few shorts, which is great fun and rewarding, and I’ve been talking to a few writers/actors about doing more to improve that area of film making.

The shorts are on my site.

You have filmed and directed music videos for bands such as Yo el ReyEpic Problem, Juno, and of course as we mentioned The Vox Dolomites. How have these generally come about? Is word of mouth and recommendations still as potent as simply being noticed say online?

Yes it’s completely word of mouth. I think you are more likely to work with people that you have either seen work of and have someone say, “try this guy…. he did our video”

How do you approach music videos, do you have a general strategy?

Keep as simple really, talk to the band, see what the song is about, see if there is any chance of creating a look on an almost zero budget. Then see what’s left and work with that.

I imagine story/narrative wise around the song itself it is collaboration between band and you?

Yes, I always try and create a video the band will like, they are paying for it so it should be what they want otherwise they will not promote it.

Once you have found a person in the band with vision and find a way of telling them how filming works and what’s possible, you do come up with ideas of how you’re going to approach the shoot.

Some bands know just what they want from the get go … some do but you have to find out by knowing what they don’t want and narrowing it down that way.

Some bands (Vox Dolomites) just say do what you do…. and are happy with me creating something, they are very trusting.

How long does it take to prepare for a shoot from the crossing Ts and dotting Is to film day?

Well, months really, from the point the band contacts me, up until I start the shoot, making sure you write down all the shots you need as the main frame work, and then the little shots / angles to fill in the video

Let’s just say there are so many emails/Facebook messages regarding every detail of the idea

…And generally for the shoot itself?Chalkman juno shoot1

If you have prepped well you know what the band want and if they are good like Juno and send me pics of the room they wanted to film in you know what to expect and it’s so much easier. Having a pro-active band is a massive help since I work alone and Juno were awesome to work with.

What we loved about your videos and style is that there is honesty to the camera work; you manage to get right into the heart and climate of the performance or story, in position and in colour/lighting. Is this something you deliberately aim for or simply a welcome by-product of other things?

I can honestly say, it’s just how I film, I love “depth of field” and when using a lens to blur out everything other than a face or a say an eye or a guitar part … you drag the viewer in as that’s all you can focus on.

I see things in “depth of field” and so I film that way, meaning I look at objects and blur out the rest of the world, so that’s how I film. I love strong colours and I’ve never been a big fan of that washed out film look like you’re seeing the world via a net curtain.

Do you have a core intent which spines every piece you work on?

I make notes of what I want to create or how I’m going to create the video and if you read them back months after I have finished the video it’s what I wrote down, so yes I think I do.

Chalkman TokyoWe earlier mentioned the brilliant Vox Dolomites, a band we love and you have made a few videos for. You made the riveting thirty minute film with the band of their Dirty Work Tour in Japan. How did that gig come about?

That all happened because Will, the guitar player said “you should come film it” as an off the cuff remark, and that was it, simple as that. Will is an enabler and he knows it, he also knows me and my love of travel, so it doesn’t take much for me to say yes to something like filming in Japan.

That was the biggest project to date for you?

Japan was one of the biggest things I’ve done, but last year 2013 I was in California filming a band called The Started-Its where I had to film their support slot to Barbwire Dolls and produce 3 promo videos as well in a matter of days

….and to make things worse/better I had to learn a couple of the songs and join them on stage for the last song on guitar and they refused to rehearse the songs with me… no pressure then!

How difficult were the logistics of the project alone to work out?

If you’re walking into a situation with a band you know, you are able to get things set up a lot quicker

But flying to a country like Japan and filming in venues in cities you don’t know and also record the audio for mixing later to be synced to your video …. I think it’s a logistical nightmare and I have to say I had sleepless nights for months before I got there.

But being pragmatic to say the least you try and work out everything that COULD go wrong and have a plan b (c, d & e) just in case.

Not just saying it to make you our friend 😉 but it is for us one of the best tour videos in recent times, a film which not just shows the band but the atmosphere and passion created by the fans during and outside of the gigs themselves. I know the band is very popular in Japan but were you expecting to see such fervour personally?

Thank you, I’m very flattered that people like the work I do, being completely self-taught I self-doubt to whether I can achieve the goals I set for myself.

I was warned about Japan and how bands are accepted there and loved, but also it was overwhelming how some of the fans that travelled to a few of the gigs gave me gifts because I was with the band… just so welcoming, amazing people (stunning food as well)

There must be plenty of difficult moments and funny stories coming from not only that project but overall jobs, anything you would like to share with us? Any secrets?

What’s the old saying ….”what happens on tour stays on tour”

Is there any particular video or piece of film outside of the Vox Dolomites movie which you are most proud of?Chalkman juno shoot

Yes I’m really proud of the Randolph Swain & The Red LightsLittle House Video that I shot last summer in Manchester at 4.30am in an empty city centre.

I had to convince then that it’s all about the light and feel of an empty city … and being in the north of the UK its light very early in the morning in summer.

What is your latest project and what is up-coming in the world of Chalkman Video?

I’m going to be in San Francisco filming several bands including The Started-Its and a few I meet last time I was there.

Where is the best place to see your work for the readers?

My web site has most of the work www.chalkmanVideo.com

…and contact details for bands interested in discussing video possibilities?

info@chalkmanvideo.comor via my Facebook page www.facebook.com/ChalkManVideo

Thanks once again Carl for letting us steal some of your time.

No thank you for letting me crap on about what I do.

Lastly please leave us with the sounds and bands which ignite your passions outside of your video work?

That’s so easy The Dickies to Pegboy to Decendents to Biffy Clyro to Godspeed You! Black Emperor to Leftfield … depends really on my mood.

We will be looking in on Carl during his upcoming work in San Francisco so watch this space but before that go check out his work at the above links.

The Vox Dolomites – (White Man) in Hammersmith Palais

Pete Ringmaster

The Ringmaster Review 20/03/2014

 Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

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Epic Problem – Lines EP

Epic Problem Photo Courtesy of Chalkmanvid

Epic Problem Photo Courtesy of Chalkmanvid

    Feisty, commanding, and seriously contagious, the Lines EP from UK band Epic Problem provides another excuse to claim that the finest punk rock comes from this side of the pond. Ok that is a big debate which can never truly be resolved but the quartet from New Mills, Derbyshire with their latest slab of ferocious and raw anthemic rock ‘n’ roll only add to the evidence. The fact that their sound is seeded in the melodically spawned ‘Gainesville’ punk sound does not deter that declaration either, as Epic Problem simply twist it with further inciting genre additives into something not necessarily unique but openly distinct to themselves. Consisting of four tracks the EP is an adrenaline fuelled stomp which captivates, ignites, and bruises the passions, though not always in that order.

     The band formed in 2010 when guitarist Neil ‘Mackie’ Mclennan (from eighties punks Blitz) linked up with vocalist/guitarist Jake McCullough (Dangerfields, Dead Subverts) to sing on songs the former had written. Soon after bassist Tony Morrisson and drummer Greg Boulton joined up and the band worked on writing more songs and preparing their outbreak into the country. Their live debut came supporting The Business in the December of 2011, with the following year starting off a constant flow of shows to now which has seen Epic Problem sharing stages with bands such as Argy Bargy, Subhumans, Dead To Me, Nothington, and The Blacklist Royals. Recordings wise, The Lines EP is the successor to the six track mini album All Broken, a well-received and acclaimed release which the new record is sure to emulate.

     The title track kicks things off, riffs and rhythms a caustic force from the start matched by the great abrasive gravelly vocals. It is OB-GD17D.pdfnot long before a delicious tempting of anthemic melodic enterprise and group calls with Mackie and Boulton supplying a rich grazing support to McCullough, breaks out. Thoughts of Leatherface and Dillinger Four make a suggestion though equally the band triggers comparisons to Social Distortion and in some ways fellow Brits, The Vox Dolomites. Truthfully though song and sound whilst offering familiarities forge a presence which is distinct to the band; guitars and vocals a compelling inventive provocation driven by the voracious energy and antagonistic passion of the rhythms.

    The following Deny snarls and rips out an urgent pace from its opening second which is as predatory as its predecessor but with a slightly more belligerent gait, or certainly with a different twang to its voice and intensity. The track also lacks the incisive hook of the first song but has no lack of infectiousness to its vocal squall and rhythmic punctuation to its expressive riffs and lyrical croon, a bait elevated by the outstanding Sink, a rowdy anthemic charge of a song taking the best essences of the previous tracks and turning them into another potently addictive brawl of punk rock. The best track on the release, though seriously challenged with each play by the opener, the song alone with its rhythmic taunting and sonic mischief around a virulently catchy hook loaded with a wealth of melodic barbs and an old school fire enhancing its triumph, reinforces the stature of band and genre.

   The release is completed by Weak, a cover of The Beltones track. It is an accomplished and passionate offering revealing more of the band’s craft and adventure but as good as it openly is just does not match up to the other tracks. Nevertheless it makes a fine and pleasing end to an excellent release. It might be greedy to want a full-length assault from Epic Problem so soon after the release of the EP but that is the kind of hunger it inspires. Along with many other bands, this explosive treat shows that British punk continues to lead the way for our maybe slightly based thoughts.

The Lines EP is released digitally and via Longshot Music and Rebel Sound Music in the USA, and Rebellion Records in Europe with 100 on Black vinyl, 150 on White vinyl (exclusive to Rebel Sound), 150 on Blue vinyl (exclusive to Rebellion) and 200 on Splatter vinyl (exclusive to Longshot) available.

Check out the video for Lines directed by Chalkman Video @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zf0i9i3As0&feature=youtu.be

https://www.facebook.com/epicproblemuk

http://epicproblem2.bandcamp.com/album/lines-7

8.5/10

RingMaster 05/02/2014

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