The RingMaster Review picks its favourite metal, rock and noise releases of 2018

Across its busy year 2018 unleashed a horde of gripping and rousing metal, rock, and noise driven releases. Here we pluck out those covered by The RingMaster Review which had the juices flowing most lustfully of all…

1. Black Space Riders – Amoretum Vol. 2

2. Coilguns – Millennials

3. KEN mode – Loved

4. VNDTA – Pale Glow

5. Mammüth – Outlander

6. Black Space Riders – Amoretum Vol. 1

7. Eryn Non Dae. – Abandon Of The Self 

8. The Great Sabatini – Goodbye Audio

9. U-Foes – No More No More

10. Dead Register – Captive

11. Naberus – Hollow

12. Bailer – Self Titled

13. Hostile Array – Self Titled 

14. In Vain – Currents

15. Vantablack Warship – Abrasive Pulmonic Speak

16. Skulk, The Hulking – Afterbirth Of A Nation

17. The Ugly Kings – Darkness Is My Home

18. Spookshow Inc. – Visions Of The Blinded World pt I & II

19. The Castor Troys – Legends Never Die

20. Owl Company – Iris

21. Deville – Pigs with Gods

22. Arcaeon – Balance EP

23. Maudlin – Sassuma Arnaa

24. The Senton Bombs – Outsiders

25. Verni – Barricade 

Vantablack Warship – Abrasive Pulmonic Speak

Photo by Wayne William Archibald

Unapologetically harsh and uncompromising, arousingly irritable and voracious, Abrasive Pulmonic Speak is the debut album from Canadian fury Vantablack Warship; it is also one seriously addictive assault with as much swing and contagion as sonic violence.

Vantablack Warship is the coming together of various members from some of Montreal’s best bands including one of our favourites, Buffalo Theory Mtl.  2016 saw the release of a self-titled EP, a slab of hardcore fuelled extreme metal taking no prisoners and announcing a formidable new trespass to brave. Abrasive Pulmonic Speak builds on its potential and then wipes the floor with its sibling, the album eight chunks of barbarous punk ‘n’ metal virulent in sound and viciousness throughout, sludge thick and stiflingly suffocating when it leans back on its urgency but not its ferocity. With the rapacious tones of vocalist Yannick (Pil) Pilon (Arseniq33 / Buffalo Theory MTL) standing dead centre of the rhythmic barrage unleashed by bassist Kurt Clifford (Foreshadow) and drummer Pierre Pitre (Arseniq33 / Foreshadow) surrounded by a sonic tempest cast by guitarists Pat Gordon ( Ghoulunatics / Les Ekorchés / Leprocy / Buffalo Theory Mtl) and Thierry Hivon (Brutal Chérie / Sarkasm), Vantablack Warship go straight for the throat from the start with Abrasive Pulmonic Speak leaving the senses reeling and body rocking.

The album leaps upon ears with Another Dead Rockstar, the opener swiftly a severely infectious incursion with Pilon blasting the listener from its first to last breath. Thrash nurtured riffs and senses puncturing beats surround his raw and honest appraisal, lustfully swinging grooves soon adding to the already salacious temptation. Carrying a Society One meets Converge like scent the track is dirty, hateful punk ‘n’ roll at its best and an incursion which gets under the skin like a viral puppeteer.

The following Black Tongue Bertha is a carnal invasion of sound and enmity, riffs and rhythms crawling sharing pure animosity yet from their malevolence a glorious addiction spewing groove springs. Ebbing and flowing in its urgency of attack with increasing contagion, the song breeds additional flourishes of acidic melody and body rousing incitement but never relaxing in its antipathy, in fact accentuating it as it passes its victims over to the waiting chokehold of Blood on the Mat. A “graphic account of women in the UFC”, which can be transferred to the vileness of domestic violence, the track is another barbarous anthem pulling no punches or finding a relaxing its foot on the pedal of its persistently punishing attack. It is superb, an irresistible rile to attitude and spirit; the album after three tracks already drawing fevered praise.

Kill the Kid keeps things as forcibly stirring if maybe not quite offering the individualism of its predecessors though its subsequent predacious crawl from its incendiary start brings the thickest hues yet of the sludge/doom textures in the band’s sound. Equally it rocks and batters the senses like a cyclone, as too, and even more so next up Ruderalis. Grooves, riffs, and hooks escape every angle of band and sound, even the beats of Pitre getting the body bouncing as guitars weave their infernally invasive temptations. Again Pilon’s vocal squalls bring the ill intent each track constantly embraces, his rancor soaked syllables and bad blooded breath as compelling as anything aligning his intrusion.

The album’s title track bullies and stalks ears immediately after, but Abrasive Pulmonic Speak is equally loaded with manipulative grooves and tenaciously persuasive rhythms, the gnarly barbed throat of the bass just manna to these ears. It shuffles and swings like a bare knuckled fighter, again no reserve given to its physical and emotional trespass while The Blackhole, a song about ‘Raider Nation football fans’ takes a more considered though no less corrosive energy to its lead heavy gait; both tracks hitting the spot in their differing ways.

The album concludes with the thunderous tempest of Crisis, a tenebrific slow lumber churning the senses with vitriolic malevolence with just enough instinctive catchiness to have neck muscles keenly worked. More of a slow burner than those before, it makes a fine end to the release with grooves which just seduce heavy rock ‘n’ roll instincts.

Abrasive Pulmonic Speak leaves the senses reeling, lungs gasping, and pleasure spilling over as the wounds build. What could be better?

Abrasive Pulmonic Speak is released January 26th; available @ https://vantablackwarship.bandcamp.com/album/abrasive-pulmonic-speak

https://www.facebook.com/VantablackWarship

Pete RingMaster 24/01/2018

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Buffalo Theory MTL – Skeptic Knight

photo - Benoit Nantel

photo – Benoit Nantel

Creating a bruising and boozy riot of rapacious rock ‘n’ roll, Canadian quintet Buffalo Theory MTL are releasing their latest uproar of sound and attitude this month in the boisterously muscular shape of Skeptic Knight. The five-track EP is a roar of debaucherous intent amidst heavy cantankerous sound which, without any major surprises, simply gets you in the mood to feverishly brawl and party.

Hailing from Montreal MTL consists of guitarists Pat Gordon and Yannick Pilon of Vantablack Warship, bassist Gary Lyons, drummer Brian Craig, and vocalist veteran Anton Parr. Between them, they have been part of very well-known Quebec groups such as the Ghoulunatics, Les Ékorchés, and Arseniq 33 whilst Parr’s history includes playing in thrash bands in Brazil. Together they brew a thick and predatory breed of stoner metal infused with thrash fury; a sound which, since the band formed in 2009, has fuelled an early demo followed by debut album Heavy Ride in 2012 and two years later, the Murder Trilogy EP. Both have been well-received proposals backed by a live hunger which has seen the band share stages with the likes of The Atomic Bitchwax, The Naked High, Diamond Head, Skull Fist, Thor, Misery Index, BARF, Insurrection, Iron Giant, Tunguska Mammoth, and many more.

Mastered and mixed by Peter Edwards, Skeptic Knight is Buffalo Theory MTL in full adrenaline pumped, rock ‘n’ roll embracing, voraciousness which Lyons describes as “…our best material to date and it’s damn heavy as usual”, adding “ It has a different sounding production that we like a lot. We completed 5 songs for the release. There were lots of riffs just waiting to be completed and it was hard to choose which ones to release first as we are already prepared to unleash another EP by next year to follow it. We always prefer to gather a few good songs and go into the studio being ready to release something new more often, rather than waiting too long for a LP type of setup with 10+ songs.

BTMTL-Skeptic-Knight_RingMaster ReviewOf course proof of word and success is always in the eating of the pudding and there is no doubting that opener Conspiracy in Paranoland alone is one tasty incitement of new yet prime Buffalo Theory MTL rampaging for ears and appetite to devour. A track knocking around since the band’s early days, it comes built on ravenous riffs, scything rhythms, and a prowling growling bassline to get lustful over. The song initially appears as a proposal just to have a rousing time with but it is soon showing itself a predator. The guitars offer a predacious flirtation led by the boisterous raw tone and vocal delivery of Parr but tempered with spicy grooves and a great guitar and bass nagging which simply helps whip up lustful enjoyment.

The following Punishment is an equally invasive character but centred round an even more bruising thrash seeded ferociousness, a fury bound in acidic grooves and vocal hostility with Pilon potently backing the roar of Parr. With a Pantera/Down like causticity and virulence to grooves and vocals alone, the song romps and stomps with the passions before Get On It swings its sinew sculpted hips as rebellious attitude colludes with bad-blooded rhythms entangled in psyche trespassing grooves. In contrast though, vocals and hooks breed their own more merciful strong anthemic persuasion, adding to devilry to get eagerly involved in whilst being battered around the senses.

The EP’s title track comes next, instantly showing the heaviest presence and thickest web of invasive textures heard yet on the release. It makes a slow, almost lumbering, bestial entrance, relaxes then breaks into a groove infested canter which has body and imagination on board within a mere handful of seconds. That instinctive enticing is helped by the spiciness coating grooves and the arousing impact of the riff driven rabidity which consumes the senses. It is a sonic war machine in hungry motion, the kind of inescapable protagonist which refuses anything less than full involvement in its roar, much like Psychic Enclosure. Like Rage Against The Machine meets Black Sabbath meets Sleep, the closing track riles up and rages against the senses whilst uncaging an imposing contagion of flesh searing grooves and corrosive riffery stalking by merciless rhythms.

It is a fine end to a thunderous encounter leaving ears and pleasure full. Skeptic Knight is heavy duty rock ‘n’ roll to be intimidated by and greedily feast upon. Uniqueness is maybe rare but enjoyment is unrestrained; a proposal few can turn down.

The Skeptic Knight EP is available via Stand Records from February 26th @ https://buffalotheorymtl.bandcamp.com/album/skeptic-knight

https://www.facebook.com/pages/BUFFALO-THEORY-MTL/243777113598

Pete RingMaster 26/02/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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