Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Pure Mood’

ringo deathstarr-pure mood

Shoegaze faves Ringo Deathstarr return with their latest full length ‘Pure Mood’ (available through Club AC30 [UK] or Norman Records [UK], The Reverberation Appreciation Society [USA], and Vinyl Junkie [Japan]). The Texan trio always provide a rush of energy, melody and noise. The first public songs ‘Big Bopper’, ‘Guilt’ and ‘Stare At The Sun’ are worth the price of admission alone. In lieu of a public album stream, there’s also a non-album track to sink your teeth into; a cover of T’Pnau’s ‘Heart And Soul’. So, is ‘Pure Mood’ another must listen? Let’s dig in…

There’s plenty of “rock god” moments on this album, there’s more riff-centric guitar work (‘Heavy Metal Suicide’ for example), than we’ve heard from them before. Plus there’s several cutting guitar solos that are super entertaining (‘Frisbee’), these work a treat to break up the chaos. Production wise there’s multi-layered everything, a crushing wall of rock goodness! The vocals sit high in the mix, so there’s no straining to make them out. However there’s so many compressed layers it has a similar, obscuring effect. That said, the shoegaze label isn’t very accurate here. There’s not a whole lot of reverb, swooning or wallowing going on! Instead, we’ve got a full frontal noise pop explosion. ‘Never’ for instance, is an absolute punk rock pummelling!

On the critical side, some of the album cuts lack the songwriting sharpness we’ve come to expect. The aforementioned singles have a depth and impact that’s not evenly spread. The party really kicks off at track five (‘Big Bopper’) and then there’s no looking back. Despite this, the creative trajectory that ‘God’s Dream’ started continues with ‘Pure Mood’, only this time we’re hearing some other strengths. We’re hearing legit musicianship, some serious technical chops! I’m not suggesting this wasn’t always the case, but on this album we can really hear it. Touring has been kind, it’s turned Ringo Deathstarr into serious shredders! \m/ Just listening to those bass lines makes my hands hurt.

‘Frisbee’ and ‘Never’ are faves, but the closing song ‘Acid Tongue’ is my favorite. It’s a devastating rocker, ‘Acid Tongue’ slays! Thing is, for much of ‘Pure Mood’ we’re in awe of Alex’s sugary vocal melodies but on the closer, it’s Elliott’s time to shine. He takes over the lead vocal duties, sets his guitar to “seek and destroy”, and opts for a metaphorical headbutt to finish it off. “Thanks for coming… now cop this!” The song sums up what ‘Pure Mood’ is all about, dense rockers that don’t mess about. It’s not a “perfect” album, there’s peaks and valleys (so to speak), but there’s few bands this fun. Meanwhile, there’s a freighter carrying my vinyl copy across the Atlantic and I wish it would get a move on!

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Ringo Deathstarr - 'Pure Mood'
SONGWRITING
SOUND & PRODUCTION
REVERB RATING
PRO'S
  • Explosive noise pop!
  • 'Guilt' and 'Acid Tongue' are brilliant
  • Lots of fun
CON'S
  • Less cohesive than previous efforts
  • Opening lacks punch
3.8Overall Score
Reader Rating: (22 Votes)

Pinkshinyultrablast – ‘Everything Else Matters’

pinkshinyultrablast-artwork

Pinkshinyultrablast have delivered their debut LP ‘Everything Else Matters’ featuring the singles ‘Umi’ and ‘Holy Forest’. Following our chat last month, it’s time to take a closer look at the album (streaming via Noisey). On first listen, I was surprised by the album. After all, the lead singles showcase Pinkshiny’s angelic dream pop melodies and the beauty of Lyubov’s voice. The rest of ‘Everything Else Matters’ is another beast entirely, and that’s not a bad thing. It’s got depth, a lot of ground is covered in just eight songs.

Opener ‘Wish We Were’ gets the LP off to a progressive start, a seven minute epic that begins with ambient anticipation before transitioning to a post punk gallop. After repeated listens, it becomes clear that the more abstract, less structured songs are amongst the strongest. They divide the more “traditional” pop songs up, sitting at track 1, 4 (‘Metamorphosis’) and 8 (‘Marigold’). And wow, ‘Marigold’ is the knock out punch, an ambitious and stunning track with cinematic scope. It’s final moments ring out for minutes, a perfect end.

The collaborative approach Pinkyshinyultrablast take with their songs gives each song a complexity. It’s hard to predict, and certainly doesn’t fit neatly into any genre. I’m just glad they were happy to turn up the reverb, it sounds big! If you’ve read this far, I doubt you need convincing. ‘Everything Else Matters’ is a fantastic record and a brilliant start to 2015. Highly recommended. Pick it up via Club AC30 (UK), Shelflife (USA) or Vinyl Junkie (Japan).

Visit Pinkshinyultrablast @ Soundcloud @ Instagram @ Facebook.

Pinkshinyultrablast - 'Everything Else Matters'
SONGWRITING
SOUND & PRODUCTION
REVERB RATING
PRO'S
  • Genre Defying
  • Gorgeous Melodies
  • Depth
4.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (18 Votes)

Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Gods Dream’ [Stream]

ringo deathstarr-ray kimura

Ringo Deathstarr‘s mini-album ‘Gods Dream‘ is now available pretty much everywhere following an early release on Vinyl Junkie in Japan last year. Grab it on clear red vinyl via Neon Sigh (USA), Noyes Records (CAN) or Invada Records (UK & EU – April 19). Plus there’s some copies of the super special coke bottle green vinyl left via Ringo Deathstarr’s online store. To make it a little more complicated, there’s also 100 dual colored records out there too, but they’re sold out. *sob* Enough with the selling talk, after sitting with this record for a number of months, I think it’s the Texan shoegazers best work. It defies genre conventions in an uncontrived way, with strong song writing throughout. What more could you want!? Well, I do have one question – why does some of the artwork have an apostrophe (God’s) and some doesn’t? *cue Twilight Zone theme* The painting above is courtesy of Ray Kimura – stream via Neon Sigh below…

 
Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Gods Dream’ [Stream]

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Trementina – ‘Hazy Youth’

TREMENTINA - 'BRILLIANT NOISE'

‘Hazy Youth’ starts with a bed of seasick guitars before kicking into fourth gear, it’s a melodic shoegazer with raw edged charm. Pick it up on Trementina‘s latest album ‘Brilliant Noise’ out now via Vinyl Junkie (Japan). The four piece hail from Valdivia in Southern Chile, and have crafted some loveable lo-fi tunes over the past twelve months, listen to more at Soundcloud. For more reading, check out the third edition of Muso Planet featuring Trementina, Skip Skip Ben Ben and Curelight Wounds.

 
Trementina – ‘Hazy Youth’

Visit Trementina @ Vinyl Junkie @ Soundcloud @ Facebook.

Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Gods Dream’

RINGO DEATHSTARR - 'GODS DREAM'

Austin shoegazers Ringo Deathstarr have released their new mini album ‘Gods Dream’ in Japan via Vinyl Junkie. Hardcore fans will want to pick up the Japanese version as it includes bonus tracks (‘Romantic Comedy’, ‘Frisbee’ and ‘Convertible’). The rest of us need to sit tight til the global release date next month, coupled with fresh tour news. The first single ‘Flower Power‘ impressed and the rest of the EP doesn’t disappoint. Guest guitarists Adam Franklin (Swervedriver) and Jeff Schroeder (The Smashing Pumpkins) add their talent to the diverse collection of songs. ‘Gods Dream’ keeps you guessing, with ambient lullabies (‘Shut Your Eyes’) contrasted with bold rock numbers and the borderline industrial ‘Nowhere’. Without a doubt, this release includes some of Ringo Deathstarr’s best work. Take a listen to the dreamy title track featuring Alex Gehring on vocals, backed by some brilliant guitar tones.

 
Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Gods Dream’

Visit Ringo Deathstarr online @ Vinyl Junkie Recordings @ Facebook.

Ringo Deathstarr - 'Gods Dream'
4.1Overall Score
Reader Rating: (6 Votes)

Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Flower Power’

RINGO DEATHSTARR - 'FLOWER POWER'

Wow, didn’t expect this. Fresh music from Ringo Deathstarr and its more inventive than ever. New single ‘Flower Power‘ combines vocal harmonies with a progressive guitar riff that shifts from shoegaze to thrash! Then… the piano drops in to space you out. Excellent work from the Texan trio. Pick it up on the new mini album ‘God’s Dream’ available to Ringo Deathstarr’s Japanese fans on December 18 (the rest of us have to wait til 2014). The release (via Vinyl Junkie Recordings) also features guitar guests Adam Franklin (of Swervedriver) and Jeff Schroeder (of The Smashing Pumpkins).

 
Ringo Deathstarr – ‘Flower Power’

Visit Ringo Deathstarr online @ Vinyl Junkie Recordings @ Facebook.