Greyhaven – State Of Mind

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Finding an inventive and commanding middle ground between the raw intensity of metal and the anthemic infectiousness of alternative rock with a firm dash of post hardcore involved, British quintet Greyhaven recently uncaged their new EP State Of Mind. It is an encounter which roars and serenades ears and imagination in equal measure; bullying and seducing the senses with seven explosive and imposingly compelling proposals.

London based, Greyhaven formed early 2015 and soon earned a potent reputation for a live presence which has seen the band play alongside the likes of Create To Inspire, Idols Of Apathy, Vera Grace, and The Afterparty. Their first year also the release of debut EP The Flood, a well-received introduction which solidly set the band out as one to watch. State Of Mind suggests much more as it reveals Greyhaven taking new strides in songwriting and sound with riveting results.

Recorded with Dan Kerr (Shields, Create To Inspire, Despite my Deepest Fear), State Of Mind is a tempest of anthemic intensity and sound aligned to mellower moments of melodic intimacy. From opening suggestive instrumental Sinners a sense of creative and emotive drama blossoms in ears, the track growing in predacious shadows and poetic charm before it eventually drifts into the waiting jaws and rousing tempestuousness of Hexes. As guitarists Alex Hills and Jim White weave a tapestry of descriptive riffs and melodic tendrils in tandem with similarly potent keys, the raw throated growl of bassist Edd Kerton explodes to be subsequently replaced by the impressive clean and emotive tones of vocalist Sam Paterson. Tapestry is the best word for the song, so many elements across the band bred with imagination and interwoven in a proposal which never stops revealing new essences and shades of tone in every listen.

greyhaven_cover_artworkCopyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyrightIt is a craft and prowess which applies to all songs within the release to be fair, the following Darkest Hour swift confirmation as a great growling bassline from Kerton and the merciless swings of drummer Connor Tate link up with the harmonious delivery of Paterson and the emotive melodies which embrace ears. A fiery solo only adds to the imposing yet captivating drama shaping the song, again each minute a cauldron of enterprise breeding new adventures with every encounter.

There are familiar elements to the Greyhaven sound which suggest inspirations from the likes of Architects and Alexisonfire, and maybe are most openly apparent within the excellent On & On, though they are spices quickly engulfed in the band’s own eager imagination. The source of the band’s new video, the track leaps around and burns like a sonic fire, the guitars licking at the senses with melodic heat as rhythms crackle at the core amidst vocally coloured flames.

From one powerful persuasion to another as the highly infectious Our Stand steps forward next, its proposal bruising and magnetic as Paterson shines within another storm of metallic predation and emotionally inflamed contagion as savage as it is rousing as it is pop lined infectious. That lighter air also frequents successor Brother, though again Greyhaven infuse it into a creative and musical ferocity which almost venomously snarls. The song adds another shade to the sound and songwriting of the band, its catchiness an inescapable lure perfectly courted by a barbarous intent headed by Kerton’s toxically grouchy growls.

Closed by a thoroughly enjoyable acoustic version of The Flood, the title track of that first EP, State Of Mind proves and further suggests that Greyhaven is heading towards becoming a potent part of the British heavy rock scene. Already they have provided two releases no one should ignore.

State Of Mind is out now via Outsider Records across most online stores.

Pete RingMaster 08/09/2016

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Vera Grace: Rotations EP

The debut EP from UK metalers Vera Grace has had a bit of a buzz behind it with comparisons of Underoath, Oceana, and Parkway Drive being thrown the way of the band. The Oxfordshire quintet are building a fine and respectful reputation for their raw and aggressive hardcore/metal sound which has had many eagerly waiting for this release, The Rotations EP. Now with the experience of hearing it one has to say the comparisons maybe a little premature as the EP shows a band still evolving and finding its sound but the EP also offers up a wealth of promise that will surely see the band make a true and deeper mark ahead.

Formed in 2011 whilst still at school, the line-up of vocalist Stephen Nulty, guitarists Jonjo Williams and Chris Thirtle, bassist Aaron Godfray, and drummer Josh Williams, has already left trails though ears with their first single Living Forever Isn’t Living At All and a free download single in the shape of Dark Hearts which has just been released prior to the EP. Rotations unleashed on May 14th is set to light up even more senses whilst as mentioned igniting a keen anticipation of greater things ahead.

The release opens with Wasting Away and takes no time in scorching the ear with well crafted and incisive riffs alongside a deep imaginative bassline. The song soon flexes its muscles with a concentrated  aggressive rhythm and demanding riffs which easily stride through to the senses whilst the growls of Nulty leave coarse trails that compliment and add intensity to the song without being overtly violent. Then the song leaves one wrong footed by the introduction of his clean vocals. It has to be said immediately that on this song they work wonderfully though one wonders if in the way intended, but as the release progresses that aspect of their music suggests it still needs more definition and work. An excellent coarse purveyor of words his clean attack is not an easy or seamless fit but as mentioned on Wasting Away it actually works to their advantage. On the song it brings a surprising old post punk feel with elements of Public Image and Joy Division coming in, and once given some time to digest it works wonderfully making the track easily the favourite.

The stirring Lost comes next and another track where the band rampage with a strong accomplished skill and power . The music is not particularly ground breaking but it is certainly as strong if not better than the majority of other emerging similar veined bands. The track pummels with a sure intent to keep the attention fully focused to ensure the fine melodic interplay and detours the song neatly takes are not missed. To balance the earlier comment the vocals work a treat in both guises on the song and are well placed within the alternating melodic and aggressive demands.

Esther’s Imagination takes over to continue the impressive consumption from the well crafted and thoughtful testing of the senses. There is a nice balance and blend between the two sides of the music that persistently intrigues and keeps one interested. Sadly here the vocals lack cohesion on the clean side, it is not terrible or destructive to the song but just a sign of some work to do and even greater things to come.

The title track brings an atmospheric progressive touch as it emerges and expands and brief though it is it explores and displays the creative side of the band wonderfully as it leads into the closing beast of a track in I Am The Earth. Expressive and emotive the song is a towering wall of heavy incisive sounds and melodic invention that takes one on an at times tumultuous journey. It is a formidable song which sadly loses its stature from the latter clean vocals and group shouts. Hopefully this will not come over as an attack on Nulty as for the whole he is as mighty as the rest of the band with his aggressive grabbing of the emotions. The band just need to reassess the use and placing of his clean vocals and infuse them to the best effect as on the opener.

     Vera Grace are a band on the rise which need a close eye on as Rotations more than suggests something special will be coming are way soon.

RingMaster 25/04/2012 Registered & Protected

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Vera Grace offer free download TODAY!!

There is a brewing force from Oxfordshire and in the very near future they are going to explode upon the senses with their debut release.  This mighty event comes in the shape of Oxfordshire rock band Vera Grace and their EP Rotations which will be unleashed on May 14th.

But before then to whet the appetite the band are going to make a brand new song not on the EP available as a free download. The song Dark Hearts is available from today for free on their Facebook profile and is sure to raise the anticipation for Rotations tenfold.

Dark Hearts strikes at the heart with intimidating riffs, thunderous aggression and a melodic skill which inspires one  to open up even more to their stunning sounds. The song and band offer something different to the usual metalcore approach and this song alone makes the wait until May 14th and Rotations an impatient one. The RingMaster Review

Formed at the foot of 2011, Vera Grace are quickly scaling the ranks and making new friends. Hailing from rural Oxon and featuring school mates Aaron (Bass), Chris (Guitar), Steve (Vocals), Josh (Drums) and Jonjo (Guitar) the eager quintet took no time in penning new tunes for their eagerly awaited debut record. To help make their distinct mark on the metalcore Vera Grace set loose a debut single in the shape of Living Forever Isn’t Living At All to great hearty support from a grass roots level and earned the band a cluster of new fans.

The eagerly awaited debut release of Rotations is sure to raise the bar with its five meaty slabs of hardcore infused metal. Sparking glowing comparisons to and taking cues from the likes of Underoath, Oh, Sleeper, and Parkway Drive, Vera Grace offer up an altered take on metalcore and in turn have produced a debut record loaded with guile, intensity, and true promise. From the melodic riffage and beefy climax of Wasting Away, through to the experimental synth and guitar work on the title track Rotations, Vera Grace have set loose a real beast of a debut. The UK metalers also plan a full blown gig onslaught set for summer, hit up  for show updates and that free download.

ROTATIONS TRACKLISTING: 1. Wasting Away; 2. Lost; 3. Esther’s Imagination; 4. Rotations; 5. I Am The Earth.