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Wednesday 1 April 2020

Reviews: The Wild!, After The Abduction, Moon Destroys, Summit (Matt, Simon & Paul S)

The Wild!: Still Believe In Rock And Roll (eOne Music Canada) [Simon Black]

I suspect the title of this album tells you most of what you need to know about this Canadian four piece. So often for bands in this corner of the genre, just getting out of their home country proves too much of a challenge (although to be fair knocking Metallica off the charts in your home country is nothing to be sniffed at). Judging by their planned touring schedule for the year before the world melted down, breaking out of North America and into Europe is not a problem for The Wild! and if it actually goes ahead I will definitely make sure I check them out at Steelhouse Festival later this year.

This is album number three from a band for whom it didn’t sound like it was a chore to sit down and write, as it’s fresh, energetic and catchy throughout. In terms of sound comparison, it’s rock’n’roll snorting punk, so there’s equal quantities of Buckcherry, Demolition 23 and some very early AC/DC for the riffage on an album that whilst trying to sound like it’s from another decade in its influences, is clearly taking advantage of the modern age in its recording quality and I cannot fault the production at all. It does take a couple of tracks to get into its stride - not that the first couple are bad, it’s just by the time you get to Nothin’ Good Comes Easy, the album literally jumps up a couple of gears with this great rocking slab, with its great riff-driven groove and a catchy chorus. High Speed does what it says on the tin and keeps the momentum going with a rollocking foot tapper – driving music of the first order, with middle finger salute firmly raised.

And it doesn’t let on from then on. King Of This Town and title track Still Believe In Rock And Roll are solid rock’n’roll groove. Even the one ballad Gasoline doesn’t disappoint, with roaring chords and a blinding vocal performance from Dylan Villain (yes, really) to close an album that was an absolute breath of fresh air and bike exhaust fumes. This band have done incredibly well in a very short space of time, and I cannot seeing even a global pandemic slowing them down – just another challenge to overcome boys. 8/10

After The Abduction: Cracked And Bled (UKEM Records) [Paul Scoble]

After The Abduction are a five piece based in Manchester. The band have so far recorded 2 demos and a single, Cracked And Bled is the bands first album. The main style presented on Cracked And Bled is brutal technical death metal. So nice and complex, but also battering and unforgiving. There are similarities with several other bands, but more recent Kryptopsy would probably be closest. Technically this album is superb, very tight, intricate riffs, very impressive drumming and great solos, the vocals are harsh and aggressive, as you’d expect with this sort of thing. So, this is a band that excel at fast, tight and blasting, this is demonstrated by the tracks Flat Bastard; which is battering and direct, and the track Lay And Decay which is a high speed blast of tight riffing and thundering drums. However this is a band that are equally adept at the slower side of Death Metal.

Stuck In Fat is a slow, lurching monster of a song that is insanely heavy and has a groove the size of a planet. Another track that shows this is the title track Cracked And Bled which is slow and heavy, again with a huge groove and also boasts some great guitar harmonies. Another standout track for me is Gagged In The Arse which is simple and driving, and has a relentless, unstoppable quality that is really enjoyable. This is a very strong album, but it is in a very packed marketplace, there are lots of other bands doing a similar style (Krisiun, Origin, Wormed, Spawn Of Possession etc.). This is a good album, but whether or not it’s good enough to stand out in such a packed field, only time will tell. It deserves to be noticed (if nothing else, for the song titles), for a first album it is very strong and enjoyable. 7/10

Moon Destroys: Maiden Voyage (Brutal Panda Records) [Matt Bladen]

Maiden Voyage is, if you haven't already guessed the debut EP from Moon Destroys a band created by Juan Montoya (guitar/ex-Torche) and Evan Diprima (drums/ex-Royal Thunder) having written together a few times it was only a matter of time before they made a project so here it is in Moon Destroys. A very intriguing blend of stoner/doom heaviness and psychedelic flourishes Maiden Voyage is three instrumental sections that serve as linking passages to the only two tracks with vocals. Montoya and Diprima have enlisted Joey Jones for additional musical instruments and production but none of these men sing on the record. You will recognise both vocalists though as Stormbringer has the vocodered delivery of Cynics Paul Masvidal along with a bit of fuzzy synth from The Sword's Bryan Ritchie. Blue Giant, this albums stand out track has the gruff bark of Mastodons Troy Sanders adding to the crunching grooves. The EP definitely shows the magic these two men have in the songwriting department, now all they need is a full time vocalist and I'm sure their full length will be on the cards. 7/10
Summit: The End (Nidarosdoomen) [Matt Bladen]

This two track EP clocks in at just under 30 minutes and it's the first non-demo release from
Trondheim epic doom band Summit. Featuring members of stoner band Rogue Planet and black metal band Ilhalung, Summit have created a two track release with both songs clocking in at around 15 minutes they drag themselves to their conclusion with slow, deliberate down tuned riffs and moaning sonorous vocals. At just two tracks that rarely deviate from the epic doom template it is a little repetitive and I did sort of lose interest 5/10

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