GUNSHINE – Checkmate

GUNSHINE - Checkmate cover art
  • 7.8/10
    GUNSHINE - Checkmate - 7.8/10


Label: Groove Records/The Fuel Music
Release date: April 28, 2023

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Austin Ingerman’s newest band Gunshine released the band’s EP, Checkmate on April 28, 2023, on Groove Records/The Fuel Music.


Gunshine was a project started by New Year’s Day guitarist Austin Ingerman during the Covid shutdown. Ingerman worked to carry out his vision for an edgy Rock ‘n’ Roll band with attitude, was melodic / catchy, and written organically. Per Ingerman,”I’ll hear vocal melodies and guitar riffs in my head, and let things flow very naturally and artistically.  We just write what comes out, and never try to sound a certain way or let external factors influence our writing in any way.” Chris Collier (Korn, Mick Mars, Lynch Mob, Prong) produced and engineered CheckMate in Las Vegas.

Joining Ingerman is James Renshaw (drums), longtime friend to Ingerman Pat Brown (bass), and distant cousin to Elvis Presley Jordan Benson (vocals). The name of the band was born out of a Google search as Ingerman wanted to capture his Florida roots and stand apart from LA. bands. Florida is known as the Gunshine State (the shape of the state resembles a gun and Florida is the “sunshine” state).


The five-song EP, Checkmate has a runtime of twenty-seven and a half minutes of unapologetic Hard-Rock and good times. Lyrically the album is themed around feel-good light-hearted fun according to Ingerman in a recent interview conducted by CheckMate is a good mix of mid-tempo and uptempo Rockers. “90 Proof” starts the EP with an uptempo riff with a catchy chorus that will be a fist-pumping anthem expected to sound great live. “Swing Away” and “Checkmate” keep the momentum going with a Velvet Revolver / AC-DC midtempo groove and feel.

Gunshine displays their musical chops on the last two tracks of the EP. “Annihilation” has a heavy midtempo riff that transitions away from the groove at the beginning of the EP. The last track, “Til The End of Days” takes a more epic direction in length of over eight minutes that features an instrumental jam session in the middle of the track with Ingerman’s fretwork on display.

The production on this EP sounds balanced and well-tuned. Renshaw and Brown’s contribution in the band does not go unnoticed as these musicians add their chops and abilities to the songs.

Final Thoughts

Gunshine set out to stand apart from the prototypical LA bands with their style of Swamp Rock and has done a very good job of it. For a five-song EP, Gunshine checks all of the boxes that any Hard Rock fan could ask. Fist pumping themes, feel-good anthems, and memorable choruses. It will be interesting to hear a full length album from Gunshine in the future.


  1. 90 Proof
  2. Swing Away
  3. Checkmate
  4. Annihilation
  5. Till The End Of Days


Austin Ingerman – Guitars
James Renshaw – Drums
Jordan Benson – Vocals
Pat Brown – Bass


  • Mark Zagotti

    Mark is a reviewer for Metal Express Radio since 2022. He first discovered the power of Hard Rock in 1985 as a teen when he first listened to Twisted Sister's cassette Stay Hungry. In his teen years, Mark was introduced to bands such as Kiss, Metallica, and enjoying the time that Rock and Metal ruled MTV. His first Heavy Metal concert was Clash of the Titans in 1991, where he experienced the site of a SLAYER mosh pit for the first time. Ever since that moment he has been a METAL HEAD for life. Mark's musical tastes have expanded over the years enjoying music from bands ranging from Ghost, Amorphis, Paradise Lost, the Big 4, Behemoth, and just about everything in between.    

    View all posts

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.