Phoenix Calling – Forget Your Ghosts

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You may have been recently caught up in the growing buzz around UK rockers Phoenix Calling through the release of the singles Everybody Knows and just recently Wasted. It has been attention brewing up for the Cambridgeshire quintet for a while now thanks to their live performances and the Waves EP of early 2014, and sure to gain new acceleration with the release of the band’s debut album Forget Your Ghosts. A collection of seriously accomplished and captivating melodic rock encounters, the album provides evidence of a band with the talent and potential to make a major mark on the UK rock scene, and itself give it a healthy impressive nudge to start widespread awareness off.

Formed in 2012, the Peterborough band draw on inspirations from the likes of Deaf Havana, Mallory Knox, and Fightstar to colour their instinctively infectious sound. With a musicianship as flavoursome as their music, Phoenix Calling able too potently play over fifteen different instruments as a collective unit, the band as mentioned released a pair of eagerly received singles earlier this year, tasters for the album which have alone sparked a fresh and broader appetite for the band’s presence. The first of the two songs alone received airplay on nearly 80 stations across the globe. This has been complimented before and since by a live presence which is just as eagerly praised and supported, the likes of The First, We Are Fiction, Tu Amore, White Clouds and Gunfire, and Under the Influence amongst many sharing stages with Phoenix Calling whilst the band itself has also headlined the main stage at Peterborough’s Willow Festival and played the BBC Introducing Stage at Cambridge Rock Fest. Now it is the turn of Forget Your Ghosts to stir up a fuss, something it will surely do with its thick and open qualities.

The album opens with Ab Initio, and proof that if you are going to make the opening track an instrumental intro it works so much better if it makes some kind of call to arms that lures ears and imagination into eager readiness for the upcoming adventure. That is exactly what Phoenix Calling achieve, guitars alone a tangy seducing which has appetite and intrigue hungry for the appearance of the following Hold Onto Glory which emerges from the sonic wind of the opener. The same flavoured hooks and grooves instantly again come into play as do warm melodies which welcome the vocal prowess of Steve Chapman backed by the also strong tones of guitarist Dom Greenwood. The latter and Martyn Hilliam are just as swift in unveiling fiery tendrils of sonic enterprise and raw riffery within the rhythmically striking encounter too, it all uniting in one strongly enticing and richly satisfying start to the album.

PC-FYG-artwork   Traces steps up next and the thumping beats of drummer Benedict Greenwood straight away mark the song, sinew swung swings and precise timing strong bait within a quickly growing emotive atmosphere. Vocals and guitars spin a colourful incitement to the awakening exploit whilst an emerging dark bassline from Jason Howard lays magnetic shadows in the sonic and melodic blaze skilfully conjured by the band. As its predecessor, there arguably are few real surprises within the song but its freshness and creative vitality brings a gripping persuasion which again floods Awakening, another short potent piece which really is the introduction to the excellent Bring The Roof Down. With an epic feel to its climate and an intimacy to its quieter reflections, the song is a tangle of keenly striding beats, flowing melodies, and spicy hooks, all switching and uniting across the anthemic and dramatic cry of the track.

Hitting a new plateau for the album, it is emulated by the two recent singles which come next, starting with Wasted Life. As the last song there is a skilled and attention grabbing mix of contrasting textures combining for an infectious slice of pop rock, rhythms the aggressive bait within a cloak of harmonic and sonic adventure. Group roars and emotively honed expression only add to the lure of the song, a mix similarly seeded but differently explored in the outstanding Everybody Knows. As contagious as it is melodically raucous, the song ignites ears and emotions with consummate ease with rich flames of impassioned and enthralling enterprise built on technical tenacity.

Both the rhythmically pungent Other Side and the virulently infectious We Were Young keep ears excited and a highly pleasing inventiveness coming; the second of the two especially dramatic in sound and imagination whilst their successor Angel provides a more subdued but emotionally fiery presence. With intensely firm beats and a melancholic bass tone, there is still that emotional energy which almost rumbles within the fiery croon of the song. Mellower it might be but in impact the track is as potent as any on Forget Your Ghosts.

     Still We Wait installs itself as a favourite next with its muscular and rugged landscape of rhythms, and an energy which stokes feet and emotions into action within moments. The most imposing and robust track on the album it does not sell the listener short on rich melodies and spicy imagination either, arguably emerging as the most rounded and potent song on the release.

The closing These Days provides a final creative bluster to devour happily but it is after the blast of stark and haunting sonic wind when the song comes alive, the track returning with new colour and seductive intensity to leave ears and emotions basking.

Though a few times there is some sameness between elements of different songs and the occasional familiarity to outside offerings which keeps the band nearer to the crowd then it could be, Forget Your Ghosts does everything right in providing a fascinating and increasingly pleasing proposition. It feels like this is the start of the true rise of Phoenix Calling, and the perfect place for all to climb on board.

Forget Your Ghosts is available now via The Fort Records on CD and digitally through most online stores.

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

RingMaster 28/04/2015

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

Phoenix Calling – Everybody Knows

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Melodically bold, tenaciously muscular, and energetically irresistible, the latest single from UK alternative rockers Phoenix Calling, whilst confirming why a keen spotlight is flaring up around them, makes a rather tasty appetiser for the band’s upcoming debut album. Everybody Knows is a blaze of craft and emotion honed into a fireball of feisty temptation. Though arguably not breaking into new pastures for melodic rock, it does what a great many of similarly sculpted songs do not do, enthrals whilst demanding attention.

Bursting out of the Cambridge/Peterborough in 2012, Phoenix Calling was soon a vibrant and increasingly eagerly followed band on the British live scene, subsequently taking on shows with the likes of The First, We Are Fiction, Tu Amore, White Clouds and Gunfire, and Under The Influence. Similarly numerous festival appearances have only enhanced their presence and reputation, especially when headlining the main stage at Willow Festival 2013 and playing the BBC Introducing stage at Cambridge Rock Fest. 2013 saw the release of the band’s first single Bring the Roof Down, a well-received proposition from fans and media alike. Its success was emulated by their January 2014 released EP Waves, a year which was also marked by Phoenix Calling being invited to play at Mallory Knox’s end of tour party.

Now ahead of as mentioned earlier their album Forget Your Ghosts, and with its equally impressing video, Everybody Knows pounces to awaken potent anticipation for the band’s everybody-knows-cd-artworkupcoming encounter. One resonating swing of drummer Matt Copeland’s stick sparks an instantly gripping web of fiery riffs and enticing rhythms, all bound in an acidic but invitingly spicy melody. The track is soon expanding its sonic prowess and infectious temptation as vocalist Steve Chapman croons with expression and energy across the melodic flames cast by Dominic Greenwood and Martyn Hilliam’s guitars. There is also a darker nature to the track, a courting shadow which lures through the bass lines of Jason Howard as they align with the increasingly anthemic beats of Copeland.

The track emotionally and musically roars with increasing intensity and adventure the deeper into its heart it goes, offering an unpredictable but easily accessible tempest of emotion and creative endeavour. There are some songs which simply seduce and hold thick attention with consummate ease and Everybody Knows is certainly one fine example.

Phoenix Calling have a host of live gigs upcoming, dates are…

Friday 6th March O2 Academy Birmingham

Saturday 14th March Proud Camden

Friday 20th March Esquire’s Bedford

Friday 27th March Voodoo Lounge Stamford

Wednesday 1st April Portland Arms Cambridge

Friday 10th April Met Lounge Peterborough

Saturday 18th April LEWKS Record Store Downham Market Acoustic gig in support of Record Store Day

http://www.phoenixcalling.com

RingMaster 07/02/2015

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

 

My Favourite Runner Up – Thoughts, Feelings, Actions EP

Easily backing up and building on their early promise Welsh pop punk band My Favourite Runner Up release their thrilling Thoughts, Feelings, Actions EP on August 6th. Well defined and impressively crafted the five track release is a stirring and vibrant release of fine songwriting and thrilling sounds loaded with even further promise.

Formed in 2006 the Aberystwyth quartet did not take long in grabbing attention with their Lostprophets, Mayday Parade Jimmy Eat World, and New Found Glory inspired sounds, the latter two bands still a strong reference when describing the sounds upon the new release. Recent years have seen the band sharing stages with a diverse wealth of artists including Cerys Matthews, The Blitz Kids, Kids Can’t Fly, I Spy Strangers, and Under The Influence. Their debut EP of 2010 recorded with Romesh Dodangoda, who returns to produced the new release, drew strong and highly positive response with the equally successful single taken from it receiving widespread national radio play. The band as evidenced by Thoughts, Feelings, Actions has reached a plateau of excellence and accomplished skill musically and in their songwriting but the release also indicates the band are still working towards their full potential to inspire thrilling anticipation for their future and UK pop punk.

Let It Ride opens up the release with a stylish and confident presence. Instantly contagious and openly melodic the song takes no time in stroking the ear with busy guitar play and powerful rhythms. Vocally Christian Evans is outstanding; his voice one of the most agreeable to emerge in recent times and is well backed by the supporting tones of bassist Lee Walker and guitarist Andrew Towell. The song has an energy and eagerness which is impossible to refuse whilst musically the track is concise and persuasive in every area.

The strong start is soon elevated by best song on the EP in Our Time Now. The pulsating at times almost groaning bass of Walker leads the infection which is rife within the song, its heart and breath heavier and more aggressive entities. The band still brings smart melodies though to underpin the combative riffs with the guitars of Towell and Evans combining and exploring both aspects. The song punches with jabbing accuracy especially from the riffs and excellent beats of Thomas Carr to bring a distinct growl missing from the first and following songs, great though they are. This extra Billy Talent like roughing of the edges is outstanding and personally one hopes they merge in more of this in the future.

Next Start Living Today is an absorbing feast of melodic invention and hooks brought with an expressive and impressive touch. The song chugs along with an extra gear in its locker but still lights up the energies and emotions fully. After the quality of Our Time Now it at first feels a little subdued and less potent but it soon emerges as a strong and pleasing track to put one in their place.

The closing pair of Drawing Board and Separate Myself From Me without reaching the heights before still leaves one drenched in pleasure and deeply satisfied from ear to heart. Both have a bounce and irrepressible melodic wink to increase the contagion across the release with every member of the band allowed to express their skill and passion through the excellent production of Dodangoda.

Thoughts, Feelings, Actions is an excellent example of how good pop punk can be. It is inventive, diverse, and passionate with strong and imaginative songwriting at its core and shows My Favourite Runner Up as a band who can take the genre to new dimensions if they continue in this impressive and thoroughly enjoyable way.

www.facebook.com/myfavouriterunnerup

Ringmaster 01/08/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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