Album review: HELLSPRAY – Bring On The War
Self Release [Release date 07.08.15]
This is the second album by Swedish metal band Hellspray following on from their debut ‘Part Of The Solution’. The band master in hard and fast metal which borders on thrash territory at times, no bad thing.
Opening track ‘Bring On The War’ is fast and furious with some full on drumming from Alfred Fridhagen. ‘Song For The Deaf’ then follows at a more sedate pace but is no less heavy. At times the band reminded me of Black Label Society with vocalist Anders Moberg sounding not unlike Zac Wylde, again no bad thing!
Other highlights include ‘Something That Somebody Told You’ and ‘Eye For An Eye’ which both contain excellent riffs and arrangements. There are a few tracks though that don’t quite hit the mark, they are decent metal songs but very generic to the point of plagiarising.
Worth a listen then as there are some good tracks here but ultimately not an essential purchase. **1/2
Review by David Wilson
Album review: HURON – The Dead Stay Dead
Self Release [Release date 12.02.16]
Huron have been treading the boards now for a number of years. From their inception in Plymouth back in 2007 the 5 piece have undergone a few line up changes and honed their heavy style which has won them critical acclaim and has seen them supporting Skindred and playing Hammerfest, Bloodstock and the Download Festival.
‘The Dead Stay Dead’ is the third album from the band and provides a full metal onslaught from start to finish. Rohan James on vocals has a similar guttural delivery to Randy Blyth from Lamb Of God and musically the band delivery the same heavy riffage. All tracks are well written and well played just don’t expect any ballads!
The relentlessness of the delivery though does get a bit much, I do like my metal heavy but a bit of subtlety every now and again would have added another dimension to the album. This then is an album I would happily dip in and out off for a track or two but I found the full 11 tracks in the one go a bit too much of a heavy thing.
However there are a lot of people out there who love L.O.G and who would no doubt love this album. Huron have certainly produced the goods and delivered an album which should see them raise their profile higher still but for me it is a bit one paced, a bloody quick one! ***
Review by David Wilson
Album review: THE SHAMBOLIC – The Dead, The Dying and The Damned
Factory Fast Records [Release date 01.10.15]
It’s either a brave or a foolhardy move to call your band The Shambolic. I assume that it was either meant ironically or as a statement of intent and on listening to the album the irony was certainly lost on me!
The two mainstays of the band Al and Lee have been playing together with several other musicians for a number of years. The guys play a doom laden rock with fuzzy bass and heavy guitar riffs aplenty. They state that on this, their debut album, they went for a back to basics approach and a raw sound. They have certainly achieved that aim as they sound like they have been together about 6 months and that they recorded the album in a garage!
I listened to the album without reading the accompanying blurb first and I was honestly surprised when I read the main men had been playing together for so long. Loose to the point of sloppy in places, the playing and time keeping at times sound very amateurish.
Vocalist and guitarist Al actually sounds not too bad in a Lemmy sort of way, he could front a Motorhead tribute band no problem. When the guys get it right they did remind me of early Motorhead recordings, including the dodgy production and mix which does add to the retro feel. These moments were all too fleeting and the rest of the tracks just didn’t measure up.
I suspect it will be a while before The Shambolic become the ironic. **
Review by David Wilson
HATS OFF GENTLEMAN IT’S ADEQUATE – When The Kill Code Fails
Well ‘Gentlemen’, it’s certainly something. An album constructed with many layer, this is a piece which at times is hard to wrap your head around. Based around the story of an artificial intelligence construct attempting to come to terms with finding out it isn’t real this progressive rock album may strike a chord with you. A topic so deep instantly increases the merit of a band, something so unique has to be commended.
The album as a whole is generally ok. At times it can feel clunky and the transitions leave a lot to be desired. One of the main strengths for this album is the third track, “Layers”, this is clearly set apart from most of the other songs on the album. Some songs it is obvious why as they are purely low-key instrumentals.
This is an album which sways between comfortably enjoyable and occasionally cringey, a part of me just doesn’t connect with the vocals of Malcolm Galloway. Although I have to say that “I Still Remember You” certainly connected with me and pulled me in. The distant guitar work grows throughout the piece and towards the end is very, very similar to some Pink Floyd tracks.
Overall this is an album which didn’t pull me back for another full listen but only certain tracks drew me back and stuck in my mind. The talent this band possesses just isn’t fully showcased to the extent it can be and at times the album feels held back. This band is a very talented group with a bright future, it will just take some refining to get there. For fans of Pink Floyd this would be very much worth a listen through. Can be improved but worth a listen for those very interested in the genre **½
Review by Dillon Grant
Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
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In this show, first broadcast on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio on 2 February 2020, David Randall plays a selection of tracks from some of the artists who impressed at this year’s Giants Of Rock event in Minehead (24-27 January).
Featured Albums w/c 17 February (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 NEWMAN Ignition (AOR Heaven)
12:00-13:00 BLACK SWAN Shake The World (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 CORMAC O CAOIMH Swim Crawl Walk Run (indie)
Power Plays w/c 17 February (Mon-Fri)
SHAKRA Turn The Light On (AFM Records)
THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA Transmissions (Nuclear Blast)
RYDERS CREED Lost Soul (Off Yer Rocka Recordings)
FRAMING HANLEY Puzzle Pieces (Thermal Entertainment LLC)
ROBERT HART Mysterious (Escape Music)
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