Critical Solution – Sleepwalker

 

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If evil is looking for a new soundtrack it might not be too far from the mark to suggest that Sleepwalker might be in line for adoption. The new album from Norwegian horror thrashers Critical Solution is a glorious slab of visceral rock ‘n’ roll; a blood-letting drama and insatiable anthemic adventure rolled up into one seriously galvanic slab of ravenous metal. The band impressed with their debut full-length two or so years back, but Sleepwalker is a whole new thrilling beast from a band exploring new plateaus of imagination and flavour rich confrontation.

Formed in 2015, it is fair to say that the Helleland hailing quartet began really grabbing attention from 2011 when they, to use their bio’s words, “got serious”. It was at this point the band began working with Andy LaRocque in his Sweden based SonicTrain Studios, especially impressing fans and media with their first album Evil Never Dies in 2013, which followed the Evidence of Things Unseen EP of two years earlier. The encounter was a more thrash heavy proposition fuelled by the kind of horror storylines and sounds that helped shape the gripping presence of The Death Lament EP in 2014 and now their concept album Sleepwalker. The band has also earned a strong reputation for their ferocious stage show honed over the years and alongside bands such as Diamond Head, W.A.S.P, Marduk, and Grave over the years; an intensity and energy equally rampant within the band’s new blood show.

It opens with The Curse, the establishing of the evil coursing through the album’s character and narrative through atmospheric hauntings, intimidating tones, and a bedlamic theatre of sounds. With the imprecation in place the album unleashes its title track, Sleepwalker immediately slamming ears with meaty beats as guitars tantalise, it all the prelude to the insatiable charge of the song to come. As riffs and rhythms bound ruggedly through ears, Christer Slettebø’s guitar sends spicy slithers of bait into their midst before his vocals stir up their own kind of anthemic persuasion. It is a thumping incitement soon revealing its resourcefulness as it twists into seductive prowls and dynamic torrents of inventive tenacity. Like Metallica meets Chainfist initially and more creatively devilish with each passing minute, the track raises the ante in the album’s superb start.

Critical-Solution-Album_RingMaster ReviewWelcome To Your Nightmare ensures things are only more gripping and exhausting next, its Anthrax scented thrash tirade irresistible from the first breath and only increasing its lusty allure as it releases its devil. Driven by the slamming beats of drummer Egil Mydland, the song alternatively stalks and launches itself at the listener across its hellacious contagion. The guitars of Slettebø and Bjørnar Grøsfjell arouse as they abuse whilst the bass of Eimund Grøsfjell is aural predation at its barbarously seductive best.

Melodic and evocative caresses bring Blood Stained Hands into view next, their gentle and reflective tempting the surface to a brewing and gradually building intensity and aggression. Enjoyably even that is caught in the ebb and flow of the song’s energy, being held in check to act as a tease from within the captivating and infectious roar of the song. There is a slight taste of melodic rock aligned to grungy essences at play too, Gruntruck coming to mind in certain moments as the song leaves appetite lustful and ready to devour on the sultry haunting of Murder In The Night. It too cages listeners in a melodic embrace; warm kisses of guitar and their sonic trails of temptation a rapturous suggestiveness encased in a sinister atmosphere. There is danger and menace lurking in the shadows of the track’s slightly portentous air; a waiting incitement which bursts as the floodgates open to fiercely nagging rhythms and predacious riffs within the imagination sparking instrumental.

Ending on a news report harkening darker deeds and threats as events twist and turn, the track masterfully leads to up the barbarous revelry of Evidence Of Things Unseen, its successor swiftly a merciless assailant drenched in hostile intent and virulent persuasion. Again it is hard to escape a Metallica/Megadeth like comparison, though every swinging stick and pulled string breeds a fresh and dramatic strain of enterprise unique to Critical Solution.

The heavy lumbering Sabbath-esque entrance of LT. Elliot soon has ears surrounded and imagination enthralled as its doom soaked theatre gives a bird’s eye view of the last moments of its title victim. Crawling with insidious glee and equipped with expulsions of raw catchiness, the outstanding track is as cinematic as it is murderously compelling and swiftly matched in drama by the epic exploration in length and emotion of Dear Mother. Bringing some respite to the dark turmoil before it, its tortured reflection comes entangled in a volatile landscape of dense shadows and fiery infection loaded revelry. Through every second of its ten minutes, it is masterfully unpredictable and increasingly enthralling, like being locked in the mind and emotions of torment itself as it track spellbinds as powerfully as its predecessor.

The Death Lament just tears into ears with its rapacious horde of riffs and legion of barbarian bred rhythms next, the violation thrash fuelled anthemic metal at its primal explosive best enslaving ears before letting Back From The Grave bring the chain of bloody events to a close. Featuring guests in Michael Denner and Hank Shermann (Mercyful Fate), the final infestation of the senses and body is similarly pure thrash butchery and openly majestic in its crushing, rabid way.

There will no doubt be many voracious metal releases thrilling ears this year but already it feels safe to say few will surpass Sleepwalker and its thrash horror malediction.

Sleepwalker is out now via Punishment 18 Records across most stores.

http://www.facebook.com/CriticalSolution

Pete RingMaster 27/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Endless Recovery – Revel in Demise

ER_RingMaster Review

Just released is the second album from Greek metallers Endless Recovery, a thrash fuelled scavenging of the senses helping to get the new year of metal off to an accomplished and highly satisfying start. Revel in Demise unleashes ten voracious roars seeded in the heavy and thrash metal scene of the eighties but just as keen to involve other extreme spices in their tenacious confrontations.

Formed in 2011, the Athens hailing Endless Recovery soon made their mark on the local underground scene with debut EP Liar Priest the following year. With their first album Thrash Rider uncaged in 2013, the band was already garnering firm interest and support, one fuelled as potently by a live presence which has seen the band over time play with the likes of Deceptor, Enforcer, and numerous Greek underground artists. The follow-up to the well-received Resistant Bangers EP of 2014, the Xmas eve released Revel in Demise makes the band’s thickest forceful nudge on the broadest attention yet.

artwork_RingMaster Review     As ripe with speed metal voracity as thrash hostility, Revel in Demise sets its stall out straight away with opener Sinister Tales, a spicy instrumental of metal diversity magnetically leading the listener into the wilder throes of the album’s title track. The heftily inviting start makes a seamless transition into the more antagonistic and primal nature of its successor, riffs and rhythms an immediate barrage of muscle and attitude driven by the blackened vocal delivery of Michalis Skliros. Group shouts add to the drama already being spun by the sonic dexterity of guitarists Tasos Papadopoulos and Apostolos Papadimitriou, that theatre of temptation courted by the dark primal tone of Panayiotis Alikaniotis’ bass and the uncompromising attack of drummer Michalis Moatsos. It is a quickly gripping beginning to the release, one arguably low on major surprises but rich in full-on incitement.

The following Reaping Fire instantly savages and entices with its torrent of riffs and tangy sonic enterprise whilst Storming Death provides a darker and more hostile environment again coloured with fiery craft and exploits from across the band straight after. Both prove to be just as barbarous as they are welcoming in grooves and hooks, the rhythms and thrash fire in their hearts insatiable provocation driven in top gear. There is plenty of twist and turns to keep predictability at bay too, the first with its spiralling guitar endeavour and varied textures and the second by the vocal scourge of Skliros crawling over the senses as wiry tendrils strikingly vein the tempestuous proposition.

Leather Militia reveals thick eighties inspiration from start to finish but within a muddy tone and air which lifts it into something more intriguing and threatening than it might have been whilst Trapped in a Vicious Circle is a maelstrom of raw fury and adventurous tenacity. At times it is a tapestry of creative clarity and in others smog like intrusiveness on the senses, contrasts working a treat throughout just as Blood Countess does with its torrential invasion of biting rhythms and smothering riffery. It too is a wall of pleasing noise and ferocity veined by searing flames of guitar and captivating grooves, and equally skilled in creating a ravaging as inviting as it is destructive.

A surface familiarity between some tracks is not a major issue when looking deeper into the openly crafted encounters. The excellent Hypnos is a great example, its start and core shape similarly related to its predecessor but quickly given its own character by the cauldron of sonic and melodic enterprise unveiled by the band.

Another lofty highlight comes with Evoke Perdition, the track a hell for leather trespass that bewitches with its nagging grooves and repetitive forcefulness in riff and rhythm, Skliros once again courting the demonic depths with his black metal spiced vocal predation. A definite favourite, the song makes way for the closing assault of Lurking Evil and a dynamically thrilling end to Revel in Demise. The track is a predator, living up to its title with an urgency and creative rabidity which not so much lurks but swarms over the senses to thick success.

The album certainly ends on its biggest high with the last trio of incursions on ears and the soul, but from start to finish Revel in Demise hits the spot perfectly. Uniqueness is maybe not as potent as the instinctive creativity and energy which definitely enriches the encounter, bands such as Kreator and Exodus often reminded, but for an invigorating and thoroughly enjoyable experience Endless Recovery masterfully gets the job done.

Revel in Demise is out now via Witches Brew @ https://endlessrecovery.bandcamp.com/album/revel-in-demise

https://www.facebook.com/endless.recovery

Pete RingMaster 05/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

Dienamic Announce Japanese Tour Nordic Thrash Mob To Hit Japan For Four Dates

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Norwegian thrashers Dienamic are heading to Japan for the second run of dates! The band are heading over to support their new record “Afterlife” which will be released in Japan on September 3rd.

The band are to play the following dates:

Sept 3rd – Flying Son, Sendai

Sept 4th – Tight Rope, Nagoya

Sept 5th – Wild Side, Tokyo

Sept 6th – Wild Side, Tokyo

Dienamic Poster - Japan

Straight from the heart and right in your face! Dienamic has a super energetic and intense live show, with unique audience contact and a great atmosphere. The band first saw the light of day in 2010, and ever since the first live show following the release of their self titled EP they have been bringing it on the stage.

With over 60 live shows to date, they have become a bone crushing five piece metal act that will definitely leave a mark on the world. The band has already toured Japan, most of central and eastern Europe along with their home country Norway. This band is addicted to touring and get out there every chance they have!

Sonick Plague – Self Titled

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You have to be grateful to Sonick Plague and Pavement Music for bringing us not only a blast from the band’s past but giving it a fresh breath and energy, though it is easy to suspect a straight release of their 1988 debut album would have been a treat too for those us missing it first time around. The West Virginian thrashers though have re-recorded and re-energized that rampage, originally titled What’s the Purpose, and uncaged it as a self-titled offering and attention filler whilst the band works on new material. It is old school thrash dosed up with punk and classic metal ferocity, and yes the band’s sound has been emulated, reworked, and twisted many times over the years since Sonick Plague unleashed their album, but still the songs just stir up ears and appetite.

Formed in 1984, the band’s first ‘memorable’ line-up of Ken Cuccaro (drums) and Tim Meehan (guitars), alongside Tony Teodoro (guitars) and Sean Donnelly (bass, vocals) came a few years later, the four behind the band’s 1988 debut album. Though it swiftly gained hordes of new fans and attention, not long after it’s unveiling, Meehan left the band to be subsequently replaced by guitarist Chuck Crilly. From there Sonick Plague undertook their own self-supported tour and shared stages with the likes of Death Angel, Voivod, Gwar, Pantera, Ludichrist, Crumbsuckers and many more. The intensity of that tour and surrounding shows saw the band’s stability shaken, and after a few unsuccessful line-up changes the band parted. It was apparently the sad passing of Teodoro in 2012 that sparked Cuccaro, Donnelly, and Crilly to begin talking musical things again, and with the addition of Matt Dupre, Sonick Plague reformed and set about re-recording their first offering.

album-cover-_RingMaster Review     Recorded at the legendary Carriage House Studios, the album quickly gets down to business with Street Wars. An alluring melodic entrance gives no indication of the sonic rioting to come but it does wake up ears and imagination nicely. Increasing its muscle and drama with every passing chord, riff, and spiky beat, the track eventually hits full steam, the vocals of Donnelly ripe with attitude and aggression. We are as many, not able to bring a comparison to the first version of the album but it is hard to imagine his delivery being any more potent first time around. Musically, with age and maturity involved, you can assume the release also has a richer and thicker body, and certainly the opener rumbles and grumbles as if old school thrash was a fresh proposition.

The great starts continues with My Gun, the throaty bass of Donnelly a great coaxing alongside the virulence of driving riffs and concussive swings cast by Dupre, Crilly, and Cuccaro respectively. Settling with an attack somewhere between a lively prowl and an all-out charge, the track bites and snarls whilst a solo lights the air. Of course we have heard this all before in many ways, but from those coming after and being inspired by Sonick Plague and the bands around them in the eighties, and a great many of them definitely labour to make the same highly satisfying assaults as the reworked but undiluted proposals offer on this release.

Both AA and I Don’t Want to Relax churn up air and the senses, the first with a rabid nagging of riffs and crisp beats led by the grouchy tones of Donnelly, and its successor through its military and Celtic teased imagination. The second of the two is pure anthem, enslaving from its opening contagious moments to and across a ravenous landscape of psychotic grooves and quarrelsome riffing speared by rhythms as hellacious as they are viciously precise. The track is thrash bred but simply rock ‘n’ roll in its most irresistible form, and easily our favourite, and probably the best track on the album, despite many challengers. Its punkish character also adds to the anarchic glory before making way for the crushing yet infectiously tempting turbulence of View of Death and straight after the middle finger growl of One Swift Kick. Each keeps body and appetite greedy, the first with its predatory and unrelenting gnawing at the senses and the second courtesy of a deliciously bestial bass sound and another scourge of heavy niggling riffs and contagion spilling grooves; the mesmeric melodic oasis deep into its tempest is pretty juicy too. The track stands aside I Don’t Want to Relax as the pinnacles of the album, each the perfect invitation to newcomers to Sonick Plague past and present.

The pair of Misc Bullshit, with its classic metal hued enterprise within another savaging embrace, and finally NRG brings the album to a great close. The last track simply brawls with the listener vocally and musically, leaving no attitude coated stone unturned in its tenacious and uncompromising carnage, and both songs again showing plenty of accomplished and inventive touches not always fuelled by hostility.

As mentioned we cannot say how much the songs have changed during their re-recording etc. but there is no denying the unfussy but skilled craft and technical ability set loose. This is certainly an album in many ways you already know thanks to those who have followed over the years employing the sounds Sonick Plague and their like inspired originally. It is going to be interesting how the band’s new songs shape up, but easy to suspect they will also offer a thoroughly enjoyable ride.

Sonick Plague is available now digitally via Pavement Music and on CD @ https://squareup.com/market/sonickplague/sonick-plague-cd

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

RingMaster 28/07/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

 

 

Biotoxic Warfare – Lobotomized

Biotoxic Warfare PIC_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

It would probably not be too unfair to say that Lobotomized is not overloaded with rich originality, though it has plenty of flavoursome exploits which stand out, but when it rocks like a barbarian smelling blood, which is most of the time, the debut album from Greek thrashers Biotoxic Warfare is one fiercely enjoyable and invigorating incitement. Wearing many of their inspirations on their sleeve, Slayer and Kreator more obvious ones, Biotoxic Warfare create the kind of hostility their name hints at but also weave in some juicy sonic imagination and temptation to ensure that every song within their first album offers unpredictability as well as spicy familiarity. The result is a compelling and thoroughly pleasing rampage to heartily recommend.

Hailing from Heraklion in Crete, Biotoxic Warfare began in 2012, drawing on the European and American thrash metal scene as well as the roots of the genre to create and hone their own ideation and sound. Making a potent impression on the Crete and Athens live scene soon after, the band released the Baptized In Blood And Greed EP in the April of 2013, its fury earning good reviews around the metal media. Live the band equally flourished, earning a potent reputation as they proceeded to support bands such as Suicidal Angels and Enforcer. 2014 saw the current line-up of vocalist Mike Kavalos, lead guitarist George Dimitrakakis, rhythm guitarist Stelios Sfendilakis, bassist Panagiotis Polioudakis, and drummer Orestis Drapaniotis in place and the recording of the band’s Vaggelis Theodorakis (Revolted Masses) mixed and mastered debut album.

Lobotomized Cover Art_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review    Lobotomized quickly works on ears and imagination with its opening instrumental Mors Indecepta. The piece is a swift scene setter, its prowling almost lumbering body dragging portentous hues around as rhythms crawl slowly and intimidatingly through ears. At the same time guitars spin an evocative web of sonic expression until it all comes to a point where it all erupts into a predatory incitement of ears and imagination. The track does not make an instant dramatic persuasion, even as it increases its weight and intensity minute by minute, but over listens becomes a rich and potent introduction. Its transition into Proclaim The Gospel Of Lies is not as fluid as one would wish but quickly forgotten as the second track from a demonic declaration, sends forth riffs and rhythms clad with brutal rabidity, though they quickly become entangled with highly alluring grooves. The track is soon really storming the barricades, its riffs almost punk like and its slithers of grooves pure tangy acidity around the caustic growling of Kavalos. There is familiarity to its hooks and driving riffery yet not of sources or styles expected which adds to the intrigue and fun, as does the slip into dark cavernous, almost doomy terrain.

The song is sheer anthemic magnetism but equipped with expectations throwing exploits and imagination that makes song and band something fresh, a characteristic exploited again in Baptized In Blood And Greed. Again a bestial prowl is the springboard to furious and anthemic tenacity from all areas of the band, the bass a primal invitation as thick and potent as the fiery endeavour of the guitars. Another inescapably rousing conflict, the song makes way for the darker saunter of Dsyphoric Reality. Well its entrance is a deliberate stroll; the rest of its torrential offering is soon after an unbridled and carnivorous trespass of ears and pleasure. As in most songs, an ever twisting gait breeds a compelling and contagious swagger around which the craft of both guitarists shine with their individual creative flaming, the bass on its own agenda to prey on the passions with a rabid snarl and addictive rancor.

Drapaniotis is a perpetual magnet and provocateur with his inventive and constantly evolving swings, as proven once again in the album’s title track, though he has to hold back whilst the song makes a mouth-watering and melodically charming entrance. The itch to uncage energy and antagonism is soon inescapable and drummer, band, and song are soon descending on ears and appetite with a tempest of rabid rhythms and ravenous riffs guided by the ever raw and enjoyable hostility of Kavalos, potently backed vocally by Dimitrakakis. It is the rolling contagion and spicy slithers of sonic invention which steal the show though with the virulence of the song pure slavery as too, as indeed the ingenuity of the guitars in setting off kilter almost post-punk like sparks to the outstanding encounter.

The gripping savagery of Lust For Hate is next, bringing more of the similarity between the surface actions of some songs within Lobotomized but quickly spearing and defusing it with its own imaginative and searing tapestry of sonic colour. Not quite matching previous songs, it leaves ears and satisfaction enjoyably full before Parasitic Life and finally As We Rot (Promises of Heaven) bring the album to a thunderous close. The first of the pair is waspish in its grooving, a tasty and welcome irritant leading into the warfare of the song and returning with regular invention and success whilst the track breeds even broader rhythmic and infectious shoulders for the guitars to blaze from. It is a scintillating proposal matched by its successor, the album closer a tsunami of intensity and barbarism within a whirlpool of unforgiving energy and twisting enterprise, and quite irresistible.

As suggested there is plenty to find yourself familiar with in Lobotomized but it does not stop the album throwing up one of the most invigorating and enjoyable metal releases this year. Biotoxic Warfare is thrash metal embracing the old and new whilst infusing its own spice of character and imagination. This might not rank as your best metal album of 2015 but it just could be your favourite thrash encounter.

Lobotomized is available now via Slaney Records and @ https://biotoxicwarfare.bandcamp.com/album/lobotomized

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Biotoxic-Warfare/427903787269059 https://twitter.com/biotoxicwarfare

RingMaster 23/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

Titans Eve – Chasing The Devil

Titans Finals print-1_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review

Photo Credit : Shimon Karmel

Not only reinforcing an already potent reputation, Chasing The Devil from Canadian metallers Titans Eve pushes their presence and sound powerfully forward whilst sharing the open declaration of this is who we are, this is what we have for you, enjoy! Fusing a broad flavouring of metal with a thrash bred heart, sure enough it is a hard to resist offer but also a proposition which ignites the imagination and emotions to giving modern metal a very good name.

Hailing from Vancouver, Titan’s Eve emerged in 2008 having been formed by lead vocalist/guitarist Brian Gamblin and his guitarist/vocalist brother Kyle; drummer Casey Ory joining them straight away and bassist Jesse Hord subsequently completing the line-up. Taking their time honing their sound and lighting up a local fan base, the quartet really began waking up the Canadian metal scene around 2009/2010 with a tour across Western Canada followed by debut album The Divine Equal. Extremely well-received and acclaimed, the release also led the band to recognition further afield and a two month tour across North America in 2011. Their strong emergence continued the following year, starting with supporting Korn and the creation and release of second album Life Apocalypse, which in turn was followed by playing with Anvil, touring with Kill Devil Hill, and supporting Arch Enemy on their European Khaos tour. The album followed its predecessor in luring strong praise and attention upon Titans Eve, something Chasing The Devil now will definitely replicate and most likely take to new levels. Recorded with producer and engineer Eric Mosher, and mastered by Jeff Waters of Annihilator, Chasing The Devil takes the expected aggressive and uncompromising sound of the band and ignites it with arguably their most melodic and creative spicing yet…the result one gripping and thoroughly enjoyable tempest.

Titans Eve-Chasing The Devil_Reputation Radio/RingMaster Review     Opener We Defy drives in from a distance first, healthily brewing riffs closing in before upon arrival triggering punchy rhythms and a highly flavoursome guitar enterprise. Once united it all settles into a muscular stride driven by crisply landed beats and a dark hearted bassline, the guitars spinning a web of thrash riffery bound in melodic and groove metal imagination. It is a pungent blend with the final potent ingredient being the snarling delivery of Brian’s vocals, his tones more sandy than gravelly but a great texture and attack for this and all songs. The album starter continues to grow and expand in invention and sound as its proceeds, never relinquishing its core anthemic contagion and blatant aggressiveness but filling ears with potent persuasion.

The immense start is continued by War Path. The second track is similar in style initially but soon unloading uncompromising beats and a surge of hungry torrential riffs, though they both pale against the excellent predatory bassline which really begins stalking ears after an early blaze of band vocals. There are essences of bands like Exodus and Testament to the song, as in many, but equally a weave of nu, groove, and heavy metal which only helps turn the encounter into one of the pinnacles of the album. The song is a benchmark for the release emulated with regularity starting with the following No Kingdom. A melodic caress draws in ears and appetite first before things get intensive and antagonistic, the drums unleashing a barrage of thunderous bait as the guitars drive ferociously and seduce melodically through another persistently shifting design. It is a fascinating proposition though it never goes far enough in its hostile voracity or sonic ingenuity for personal tastes, something which could be said of the whole album. It is as if the band is trying too hard to balance the opposites instead of giving them their reins, but nevertheless the song just hits the sweet spot as its successor.

Another Day is the most bestial song on the album yet, vocals and its sonic nature a barbarous confronting of the senses in turn coloured by the raw and bracing alignment of caustic riffing and imposing rhythms. A fiery solo sows seeds for further melodic endeavour as well as the tenacious, almost punk metal like surge of incitement which flares up. It is a song ensuring ears and appetite only get greedier for sound and album, a hunger equally inspired by the title track and in turn The Grind. The song Chasing The Devil brews a rich old school character from its tantalising and evocative melodic opening, the track weaving a tapestry of classic and heavy metal strands into a canvas of darker bred and fuelled flavouring. Thoughts of Judas Priest meets Machine Head are prompted as the track continues to ignite ears and imagination, through its more modern enterprise hints of Mudvayne too. They are all alluring hues colluding for another peak of the release instantly equalled by the second of the pair which from the initial carnivorous tone of bass, is simply a primal tempting sparking lustful attention. With its prowling voracious persuasion of sound, the song easily lives up to its name, its riffs a ravenous persistence on the senses and the swings of Ory an unrelenting intimidation. There is no lack of addictive grooves and sonic colour either, each lining the incitement with irresistible hooks as the encounter steals the whole show.

The album is completed by firstly the bewitching instrumental Stranded, where harsh cold and melancholic emotions are lit and conjured by a seduction of acoustic expression, melodic reflection, and stringed beauty. Dark shadows and keys crafted elegance only add to the mesmeric narrative before The Endless Light steps forward to bring the album to a fine close. The track is a maelstrom of sounds and skilled resourcefulness as raw and magnetic metal collude in a thrash powered and diversely cultured storm of dark hearted and captivating fury.

Chasing The Devil is a treat of a proposal, further evidence of the exciting craft and might of Titans Eve with only the suggestion that it was not as bold as it could or at times suggested it might have been a passing thought. It certainly provides a seriously enjoyable adventure for metal in 2015 and that in our book is a big success all should take a punt on.

Chasing The Devil is available from June 12th @ https://titanseve.bandcamp.com/album/chasing-the-devil-2

http://www.titanseve.com/   https://www.facebook.com/pages/Titans-Eve/53568260495?fref=ts

RingMaster 12/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard on Reputation Radio @ http://www.reputationradio.net

Carnal Agony – Preludes & Nocturnes

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Preludes & Nocturnes is an album which manages to impress, excite, and disappoint in one go, though admittedly the latter is a mere fraction of the enjoyment had from the Carnal Agony release. There are just times though where it feels like it missed the opportunity to make an even greater impact on ears and subsequently the metal scene, evaded the chance to pungently push this highly accomplished band towards the brighter spotlights which admittedly it still might awaken.

Hailing from Umeå in Sweden, Carnal Agony began in 2011 and swiftly began luring attention for their diversely flavoured style of metal around lyrical themes inspired by the classic literature from the likes of HP Lovecraft, John Milton, and Edgar Allan Poe. Musically the band, on the evidence of their latest album, weaves in everything from heavy and classic to power and melodic metal to a thrash seeded sound, revealing inspirations from artists such as Iron Maiden, earlier Metallica, In Flames, Mercyful Fate, and Testament along the way. Early demos sparked interest whilst the band’s live presence has brought them attention and acclaim, especially through a tour with Six Feet Under last year. Carnal Agony has been called the latest sensation in the Scandinavian metal scene, a big claim not majorly contradicted by their debut album.

Produced by Ronny Milianowicz (ex-Sinergy, Dionysus, and Saint Deamon) and featuring former Helloween/Masterplan drummer Uli Kusch (also Gamma Ray, Holy Moses), the album gets off to a rousing start through War Prayer. Straight away heavy duty riffs and matching rhythms stand toe to toe with ears, setting down a sturdy thrash bred stride. Unpredictability shows itself to be a ripe essence within Preludes & Nocturnes and within just a few moments the first song has expectations wrong footed by slipping into a calmer melodic passage. This enticing invention is quickly surrounded by brewing essences of epic metal and stronger drama clad textures which in turn lead into another muscular onslaught. The gruff raw vocals of David Johagen join the mix now, his rugged, raw tones admittedly taking a little time to acclimatise to against the flowing tide of sound but an increasingly strong ingredient through subsequent listens of the release. Folkish elements tease alongside classic and power metal elements, already the band’s sound defying any precise tagging. The song continues to stampede and potently relax across its engaging length, a tasty appetite raising start to the encounter provided.

carnalagony-cover   The opening vocal lure of next up The Frozen Throne is excellent, mass clean vocals like a band of brothers crooning air and ears and an element not used enough as the voices are spot on. A guttural roar from Johagen brings the air born invitation down to earth, his warlike call the spark for a web of sonic enterprise from guitarists Mathias Wallin and Pär-Olof Persson, buffeted by the thumping skills of Kusch. Hooks and melodies colour the chest thumping proposition too as again a clutch of different flavours align impressively in the track which by its end you will surely be raising a fist and vocal chords with.

Rebel’s Lament is a less forceful proposition next, though still a muscular persuasion. Inventive endeavour from the guitars bound the rally of beats and riffs whilst the dark tones of bass from Roger Andersson add rich shadows which nicely temper the skilled craft flaming from the fingers of Wallin and Persson, especially in a bewitching solo. The track though does not match up to its predecessors but still has ears engrossed and satisfaction bubbling as does the next up Rebellion. A power ballad of sorts, Johagen reveals more of his slightly cleaner and stronger qualities, and if I am being honest it is when he lets those free that he and songs find a new quality. To be fair, it is personal taste more than anything but nudged by the fact that when he does ‘sing’ he often ignites already gripping songs further. The track grows in weight, intensity, and anthemic energy so that by its close you feel like you are astride a stallion going into battle.

As good as those two songs are Carnal Agony overshadows immediately after. It is a beast of a song, a stalking intimidation of stabbing riffs and scarring beats from its first breath and a carnivorous charge of sound and energy from there on. But that is only part of the confrontation, the guitars sparking within the core rampage with slithers and spears of sonic imagination and melodic toxicity, it all ridden by the commanding ‘follow me into battle’ tones of Johagen. The track is outstanding but too damn short at barely over two minutes.

Next up is the heavy/classic metal spiced Night of the Werewolf, a track with gothic overtones. This is one of those moments where personally an opportunity was lost, the earlier mentioned clean vocals feeling like they would have been a better fit whilst musically apart from a fiercely enticing bassline, the band feels like they kept a check on the imagination which had already lit up earlier songs.

Fire Walk with Me has ears and emotions feeling feisty again next, its fluid travel through a landscape of stormy energy and reflective melodies fascinating whilst once more guitars and bass reveals striking exploits bursting with magnetism and individual skill. Backed by voice and drum swipes, the track leaves a breathless listener in its wake, ready for Sleep Waker to please with its spicy heavy metal enterprise and Crystal Lake to turn into a head nodding enthusiast with its contagious and sinister imagination. The first of the two is another which, like the album, is a blend of full captivation and less successful elements or choices, but does get stronger and more enthralling with every listen. Its successor is a glorious stomp of horror bred devilry, everything from hooks to grooves, riffs to rhythms, an emotion inflaming festival of aggression and temptation.

The opening grisly bassline of Secrets Within the Shrine next sets the tone and scene of the triumph to come. Its thick bait is swiftly joined and enhanced by prowling riffs and venom swing grooves whilst beats are more predatory than vicious at this point. There is no escaping a Metallica whiff to the song but equally a scent of Misfits and the grouchy air of Mastodon helps bring alluring flavour of the song, whilst the constantly evolving ingenuity of the guitars takes it all to another level.

The track is excellent leaving Together We’re Lost the task with closing up the album, which it does in potent style. Familiar yet fresh, the track is an infectious and highly enjoyable end and another song which finds Johagen running the range of his delivery and yes he needs to ‘sing’ more because that is where he excels.

Definitely Preludes & Nocturnes is a release to take time with because it just grows with every recruitment of its bold and flavoursome adventure. Bottom-line is that it is a strong and enjoyable introduction to Carnal Agony who carry the promise of even greater exploits ahead.

Preludes & Nocturnes is available now via Sliptrick Records @ http://www.carnalagony.com/?audio=preludes-nocturnes

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RingMaster 09/05/2015

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