Kobadelta – Open Visions

Photo by Daniel Robson

Photo by Daniel Robson

Blending the rousing elements of their second EP and the mesmeric seducing of their last, UK psyche rockers Kobadelta unleash their finest moment yet in the hauntingly irresistible shape of Open Visions. The EP provides a feast for ears and imagination to contemplate and devour in their individual ways, its clutch of songs almost hex like in their immersion and seduction of both. Within its arcane charm the band also reveals a greater maturity and inventive lust in songwriting and sonic explorations, Open Visions the simply irresistible dark side of the band’s creativity and the listener’s psyche.

Newcastle bred and formed in 2010, Kobadelta did not take long to arouse a potent following and local clamour for their sonic swelter of a sound and matching live presence. 2013 Debut EP Ritual (Time Flies) lit more than a few fires in ears and thoughts, which the following year its successors Hidden Door and Remain Distracted, took to stronger and broader levels with their compelling sounds. It is fair to say that 2014 was a big year for the band in general. The release of the two EPs surrounded by further successes with Kobadelta being invited to perform a live session for BBC Introducing, headlining the Tanners stage at Evolution Emerging Festival in Newcastle, and playing events like Stockton Weekender alongside artists such as Peter Hook, Public Enemy, and the Happy Mondays as well as the Split Festival with the likes of The Cribs, Maximo Park, and Dizzee Rascal. Support slots for bands such as Temples, Allusondrugs, We Were Promised Jetpacks, Demob Happy, Splashh, The Temperance Movement, The Weeks, Lola Colt, and The Voyeurs, amongst many more has only increased their reputation and stature too. Now it is the turn of the Open Visions EP to push the Kobadelta cause and as we say, it is irresistible.

a0352850419_10   Even The Odds (They Mean You No Harm) is the first track on the release and immediately brings a raw and fiery proposition to bear on ears and thoughts. Guitars and rhythms make a formidable invitation which is easily accepted, even more so when an underlying melodic lure is given clarity as the initial tempest relaxes and the expressive tones of Dom Noble come in. There is still a muggy air to the song, and a siren-esque shadowing to the track which with the exotic enterprise arising from the guitar of Alex Malliris and the keys of Jordan Robson, entices like The Doors meets The Birthday Party. The song continues to immerse and swallow the senses with its sultry almost erosive beauty, increasing its glamour as it heads towards the moment it slips seamlessly into the following Blame It All On Me.

The second track is simple bewitchment from its first caress, smouldering melodies flirting with ears whilst being stalked by the throaty bassline of Jon Marley. The ticking percussive framing and rhythmic probing of drummer Chris Malliris adds intimidation to the dark premise of the song but it is the flowing melodic seducing of the keys and more unsettling designs cast by the guitars which shape the compelling drama emotively coloured by the distinct tones of Noble. There is a touch of Bauhaus to the post punk essences swimming within the psyche rock contagion whilst the gothic rock shading again springs hints of Nick Cave and co.

A fresh shimmer flows across Maskirovka next, keys and guitars a floating haze of sonic suggestiveness whilst bass and drums create a more formidable incitement which erupts with greater intensity around the climatic crescendos posing as choruses. There is something occult like in the dark rock toxicity oozing from the walls of the song and imagination of the band, an essence breeding encroaching shadows which infest and linger in ears and psyche.

The infectiousness kicks up another level with Watch What You’re Doing, its open caress of guitar the seeds for another compelling bassline and crisply landed beats to work their addictiveness as vocals and keys bring a haunting colour. Once into its magnetic stroll, the song shows itself to be as much pop rock as it is dark rock ‘n’ roll, its catchiness as captivatingly accessible as its soaring sonic enterprise is celestially provocative and darkly fascinating.

Ithaca ventures into an even heavier soundscape but swiftly tempers some of its daunting air with an echoing effect on the ever alluring vocals and backing harmonies, whilst guitars and keys sway and smother the rhythmic spine of the song with the dance of a sonic temptress. The song is pure mesmerism but with an underlying danger which seems to incite richer flames and piercing textures to emerge in the invention of Alex Malliris and Robson.

Final track Black Pyramid, like the first, accosts ears with a slightly caustic and hazy roar of sound but is soon casting an invasive exotic atmosphere through guitars and keys. Eruptions of energy and intensity only add to the sweltering air and impact of the song, whilst melodically and vocally, there is again no escaping a reference to the Jim Morrison’s led band.

If like us you fell in love with Kobadelta’s last EPs, then lust is the outcome with Open Visions, the pinnacle of the band’s sound and invention to date. If new to the transfixing world of the band, then a wealth of dark sultry treats await.

Open Visions is released on May 1st and available via http://kobadelta.bandcamp.com/album/open-visions-ep

Upcoming Kobadelta shows, including EP launch…

Friday 1st May – Think Tank? Newcastle (‘Open Visions’ EP Launch)

Saturday 30th May – ‘Sonic Union #2’ at The Sun Inn, Stockton (with TOY)

Saturday 11th July – Corbridge Festival 2015 (Acoustic Stage)

Friday 24th July – ‘Double Denim Live’ at Verve Bar, Leeds

https://www.facebook.com/Kobadelta

RingMaster 27/04/2015

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

The Phantoms – Wasting Time

Picture 148

Enveloped in an eager buzz of attention in their Scottish homeland, West Lothian quartet The Phantoms make a potent play for ears and imaginations further afield with new single Wasting Time. It is a song which does not make a startling impression or impact initially but sneaks into the psyche whilst pleasing ears, finding a potent nestling place to nudge thoughts and imagination time and time again.

Formed in May 2012, The Phantoms were soon stirring up a local following with a sound bred on the inspirations of bands such as Kasabian, Royal Blood, Catfish and the Bottlemen, and Arctic Monkeys and their energetic live presence. Their debut EP This Is How It Should Be worked away on the Scottish media and fans whilst the following single Revolution took the band to a broader British spotlight, in no small ways helped by successful tour and support slot with Catfish and the Bottlemen and We Were Promised Jetpacks. Now the Broxburn band is aiming for greater success with Wasting Time, and it is hard to expect anything less than continued success upon its anticipated release.Picture 108

The guitars of Colin Simpson and Colin McKillop bring the song into view, their melodic enticing an instant magnet which increases its pull once the dark sultry tones cast Peter Stewart’s bass emerge in hand with the firmly delivered beats of drummer Blair Cullen. It is not an explosive entrance but a seriously compelling one which only intensifies once bass and drums spin their dark web around the strong vocals of Simpson. Electronic flirtation also sizzles and teases within the song, at times a corrosive whisper and in other moments a vivacious breath from them attaching to the melodic tenacity of McKillop. The track continues to hint that it might erupt into a massive anthem or contagion but never goes that extra step, retaining an infectious yet reserved energy which leaves ears and thoughts satisfied if hopeful for that extra missing spark.

Nevertheless the track is a captivating proposition alerting the country and beyond to another emerging and potentially mighty Scottish proposal. There is certainly no element of wasting time with The Phantoms new single.

Wasting Time is available from March 9th via https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/wasting-time-single/id959093527

https://www.facebook.com/TMATW

RingMaster 09/03/2015

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://reputationradio.yooco.org/

 

We Were Promised Jetpacks – Unravelling

10464193_10152341796731705_4301644086197579392_n

Pungent in sound and emotion, Unravelling is a proposition which simultaneously makes a big impact and worms sneakily away under the skin and into the psyche. The new and third album from Scottish rockers We Were Promised Jetpacks, it is a riveting exploration, an adventure capturing ears and imagination like there is no tomorrow. Everything about the album is thick, in rhythmic persuasion, emotive intimacy, and raging melodies, but equally there is a clarity allowing every individual drama to play out their narratives musically and emotionally. The Edinburgh band has never been low on attention grabbing enterprise and songwriting but Unravelling is a coming of age, We Were Promised Jetpacks gracing a new plateau in invention and sonic expression.

Formed in 2008 by friends and vocalist/guitarist Adam Thompson, drummer Darren Lackie, bassist Sean Smith, and guitarist Michael Palmer whilst the four were at University, We Were Promised Jetpacks soon became a potent presence on the Glasgow music scene and almost as quickly were snapped up by FatCat Records. Debut album These Four Walls was unveiled in 2009 to critical acclaim, leading the band to an intense run of shows and festival appearances as well as supporting bands like Frightened Rabbit and The Twilight Sad. After the release of The Last Place You’ll Look EP the following year, the band set about second album In the Pit of the Stomach, which was recorded at Sigur Ros’s Sundlaugin Studios in Iceland. Again fans and media devoured it keenly and with praise whilst the band’s live reach saw them hit the US to great success. Now the band is set to recharge the passions with Unravelling, a release looking lyrically at “the notion of a conflicted protagonist struggling to keep their life on course, while battling a creeping sense of uncertainty and impending doom.” The first release featuring new member and multi-instrumentalist Stuart McGachan, and recorded with Paul Savage (Teenage Fanclub, King Creosote, The Twilight Sad, Mogwai), Unravelling is a tempestuous flight for senses and thoughts. Its climate is sultry and sonically hazy, its emotion tense and tenacious, but mostly the album is simply an inescapable captivation.

Safety In Numbers opens up the release, an increasingly brewing caress of keys the first touch before melodies and shadows slip into the emerging landscape of the song. Thompson’s vocals bring a plainer but no less expressive essence, his Scottish accent adding to the colour of the unveiling narrative. Instantly it is an enthralling persuasion, the walls and intensity of the track growing and thickening as an emotive wash reminding of fellow Scots Letters, immerses the imagination. There is also an unrelenting persistence to the encounter which is almost erosive in its effect, a potency which is never far away from the heart of every song on Unravelling, but a relentless baiting unafraid to share time with flowing enterprise and inventive twists which flirt across the track.

Its successor Peaks And Troughs is the same in many ways, a seduction of even catchier endeavour and sonic ingenuity which blossoms on the muscular and intensive persistence. The bass of Smith digs into darker throatier but virulent temptation whilst the imposing beats of Lackie swing with strong and imposing relish, the combination a gripping core and driving energy upon which the evocative and colourful design of guitar and keys matched by the excellent vocals flourish. The song pushes the strong start up another level with ease, a peak swiftly matched by the shimmering warmth and melodic calm of I Keep It Composed. To that elegant side though, the song explores another almost cavernous expanse of rhythmic intimidation and contagion resulting in an absorbing and hypnotic embrace. Its texture is as thick as smog and presence as radiant as the sun’s touch, and quite scintillating.

The following Peace Sign brings a less intensive and imposing approach to ears but is similarly as chunky in its rhythmic growl and weight and as slim in its excesses. The bass of Smith again excels, swaggering and flirting with grizzled majesty whilst the guitars of Palmer and Thompson weave engrossing structures and hues around the latter’s ever potent vocal suasion. Less an epidemic than a slow infestation with its resourceful might and beauty, the song is dazzling and the perfect set up for the similarly impressing Night Terror. A heavy stroll of beats sets up a frame around electro funk revelry at first, keys and drums subsequently aligning for a bubbly and vivacious coaxing before a sultry haziness kisses the surface of all and a Josef K like causticity treats the senses. It is an intrigue drenched offering which is less urgent and compulsive than previous songs whilst giving a new aspect to the album’s expanding character and richly satisfying experience.

The dark and moody drama of Disconnecting comes next; weighty keys spawning a sinister, noir wrapped climate within which vocals shimmer and percussion dances. It is a slow haunting embrace with sinew sculpted textures and melancholic radiance, which may not quite match those tracks before it in some ways but surpasses them in menacing scenery and emotional shading. Its success is matched by both Bright Minds and A Part Of It, the first a lighter but no less emotionally attentive encounter and its successor a rawer, abrasing swamp of sonic mystique and craft around a hungry rhythmic persuasion. Again neither quite lives up to the opening clutch of songs but certainly bring new delicious twists to the flight and emotional examination of the album.

Through the darker air and almost predatory intent of the excellent Moral Compass, a song just as striking in its melodic grace as it is in its bordering on caustic breath, and the mesmeric almost stately beauty of Peace Of Mind, band and album enslave ears and thoughts majestically. The almost epic instrumental grandeur of the second of the pair is a journey all of its own, the imagination unavoidably wrapped up and sparking from its sonic emprise, before final song Ricochet provides a lasting tempest of dramatic clouds and melodic tenacity within another blistering frame of invention and emotion.

Unravelling is an album which grips from the off but makes an even greater and thrilling impression the more time it is allowed to submerge and colour the senses. It is the finest hour of We Were Promised Jetpacks with ease and surely the doorway to a new level of attention and fervour towards the band’s spellbinding sound.

Unravelling is available via FatCat Records now @ http://fatcat.sandbaghq.com/we-were-promised-jetpacks-unravelling.html

http://www.wewerepromisedjetpacks.co.uk

RingMaster 14/10/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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

http://audioburger247.webs.com/

 

 

The Static Jacks – If You’re Young

Reviewing Into The Sun, the single from New Jersey indie rock band The Static Jacks which came out a few months back, we commented that “the single is a joyous duo of rich and exciting sounds and though the songs may not have your jaw dropping in awe at something brand new but they certainly will excite ears and enthuse hearts”. Well with those words also apply to the new album from the band with an amendment. If You’re Young does stop one in their tracks with the awe not so apparent in the single, sweeping one up in songs and sounds which stroll along their own unique and adventurous path. Good though the single was it gave no real indication as to how impressive this album was going to be. If You’re Young is immense, a master class in creative songwriting, melodic manipulation, and the breeding place for an infection as potent as any virus.

From New Jersey and formed in 2009, the quartet of vocalist Ian Devaney, guitarists Henry Kaye and Michael Sue-Poi, and drummer Nick Brennan have already made a distinct mark with debut EP Laces in 2009 and numerous shows and tours with the likes of Futureheads, Biffy Clyro, Young the Giant, and We Were Promised Jetpacks. Their sound is single minded and full of determination to do things their way which results in a confidence and surety which oozes out of every note, chord and song. The band sit somewhere between pop punk and an alternative indie sound, bringing the best and uniqueness of both into their own majestic creations.

The album erupts into an instant tremendous pleasing of the senses from the very start with Defend Rosie meeting the ear with firm beats, enthused hand claps and a persistent riff that smacks of mischief. Enthusiastic and urgent, the punk toned song sets their stall out from the off, exciting with feisty rhythms, guitars and basslines which carry as much defiant attitude as Devaney and his lyrics, and big hearted melodies as sassy as the girl of your dreams. From a tremendous start the band simply accelerate things with the wicked sweet tease that is Girl Parts. With an excellent additional female vocal to the inspired and emotive tones off Devaney the song is gorgeous, and confirmation of the fact The Static Jacks have an expertise at writing pop songs that few rival.

The level across the album never wavers with Into The Sun with its Pete Shelley like melodic hook and the likes of the anthemic Blood Pressure, a song which rounds up the senses into a triumphant ball of emotional rebellion, and the soaring melodic grace of Relief, all lifting up the heart and soul with sounds that warm and energise the day. The third of these songs ripples with light sparkling melodies, glittering guitars, and a passion which fills every pore from every line and reflection.

As good as any album is there are always moments that strike the most effectively and alongside the opening duo of songs it is within the mighty outbursts of My Parents Lied and Walls (We Can’t Work It Out) that The Static Jacks show they are creating music that will take them to heady heights. The first begins with a subdued voice and guitar welcome before giant beats join the fray, yet still the song holds back evolving into a canter at most whilst its crystalline melodies radiate. Subtly the intensity increases to match the angst in the vocals of Devaney. Slowly it expands into waves of crashing guitars coaxed by incisive yet reserved melodies, all blending into a fine and inspired union.

Walls (We Can’t Work It Out) is the best song on the album, dare one say the perfect song. It has everything from stunning harmonious vocals, melodies which push away any dark and rhythms that are born of primal instinct, evolution, and an insistence that cannot be denied. It is tumultuous with riffs which muscle their way into the ear alongside the consuming drums, a bass which has more belligerence than a teen asked to clean their room, and energy as potent as nature herself. The only complaint is that it is so damn short.

The album ends on Drano-Ears, where the band takes a dip into the eighties. With a soulful sound and heartfelt emotive feel which reminds of the likes of The Bluebells and House of Love, the song is a galloping flow of soft and caressing melodies and stately elegance. It completes what is a delicious collection of well crafted and completely enjoyable excitable music. The Static Jacks are coming for your heart, are you ready?

Ringmaster 05/03/2012