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Heavier Territory David O'Byrne crashes and burns with the Ringo Jets

Heavier Territory

David O'Byrne crashes and burns with the Ringo Jets

by David O'Byrne, International Desk
first published: May, 2024

approximate reading time: minutes

heavier territory - albeit as ever, with their own individual slant...
THE RINGO JETS
Cehennem Köpekleri
(Ferment Records)
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Difficult to believe that it's already ten years since Turkey's "The Ringo Jets" released their eponymous first album. They're an unusual power rock trio with no bass player, two guitarists, Tarkan and Deniz and a female drummer Lale who share vocal duties, and a sound cemented in late 60s hard rock.

The group created something of a stir with a debut that was as polished as it was controversial, not least the lead track "Spring of War", and its accompanying video, together a furious diatribe against the excesses of the crackdown on dissent following Turkey's "Gezi protests" of 2013.

Three more albums, four EPs, 10 singles and two compilations, again with shared vocals and lyrics in both Turkish and English, have solidified the band's position both as Turkey's premier rock band, and one that is still more than willing to experiment.

Last year's 19 track magnum opus "Radio Ringo" saw them flirting with styles as diverse as indie, funk, techno and 70s FM soft rock and country.

The Ringo Jets expanded their line-up with the addition of Istanbul music scene veteran, the Moldovan guitarist, Alex Tsyntsaru on bass and keyboards. The newly beefed up sound is apparent in a furious bass driven onslaught of wailing guitars, giving a markedly less than gentle reminder of Motörhead's late 1970s peak. The group's latest release, "Cehennem Köpekleri" (The Hounds of Hell) sees them explore this more familiar, heavier territory - albeit as ever, with their own individual slant.

The excursion into metal, could have gone no further, but that wouldn't have been in keeping with the group's penchant for innovation. Instead it's juxtaposed against a wash of backing vocal harmonies more in keeping with Blondie in their pomp. It's an odd mix, but works perfectly as the canvas for drummer-vocalist Lale Karde's primal scream against the torments of the everyday world (the hounds of hell) and the eternal need for music to soothe the tortured soul. A simple enough sentiment that few would disagree with, and one that really needs no further translation from the Turkish.

Indeed the only mystery remains why, despite frequent appearances across Europe, the Ringos haven't yet managed to become a household name outside of Turkey.


Essential Information
The Ringo Jets Cehennem Köpekler is available is on Youtube and Spotify

David O'Byrne
International Desk

David O'Byrne is a former fanzine writer and indie band manager, turned full time freelance journalist, travel writer and occasional fiction author based in Istanbul.


about David O'Byrne »»

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