Album review: MASON HILL – Against The Wall

Mason Hill - Against The Wall

7Hz Porductions [Release date 05.03.21]

Mason Hill have had a proper rock ‘n’ roll rollercoaster ride to get to this point of releasing their debut album, some six years after first forming. They signed to a label, left said label, started a Crowdfunder campaign to fund this album’s release and built up a loyal fan base along the way.

Said fan base, along with savvy online promotion, saw ‘Against The Wall’ debut in the UK national album chart at number 19 and top over 750,000 streams on Spotify. The album also hit number 1 in the UK rock album chart – the first time a band has charted with their debut album in the UK Top 20 since Greta Van Fleet in 2018.

Not only that but Mason Hill are the first British rock act to have their debut album in the UK Top 20 and # 1 in the UK rock album chart since Royal Blood and Lonely The Brave back in 2014.

Scott Taylor’s vocals are a key element to the band’s sound, soaring and emotive, he certainly packs a powerful, yet always melodic, punch. ‘D.N.A.’ and ‘No Regret’ are testament to this, both being powerful, no nonsense rockers that do have some similarities with Nickelback. That’s no bad thing in my book and many others as Nickelback certainly sell a few albums and fill the arenas. Something Mason Hill may not achieve, but given their self-belief and undoubted talent are certain to give it their best shot and with a bit of luck will succeed.

The ballad ‘Where I Belong’ shows off the guitar interplay between James Bird and Marc Montgomery, impressive stuff. The song builds from a vocal/harmony filled start leading into the epic guitar solos. Who We Are’ is a neat mobiles-in-the-air ballad, a chance for the band to show off their mellower side, a la Alter Bridge.

Elsewhere there are plenty of floor fillers including the title track and ‘We Pray’ (a song that will appeal to younger rock fans given its sound), although ‘Find My Way’ is not overly memorable.

Mason Hill certainly deserve the success they are now enjoying after a rocky road to get here. An assured, enjoyable debut and the start of a promising career. ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie

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