Friday, 24 April 2015

Hellrad - 'Things Never Change' (Album Review)

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 20/4/2015
Label: Self Released

‘Things Never Change’ CD//DD track listing:

1). Street Zombies
2). My Jihad is Against my Head
3). Dope Fiend Jesus
4). Homegrown Terrorist
5). Fucked Up (All I’ll Ever Be)
6). 15 Years of Counting
7). Smoke More Crack

Hellrad is:

Dirty Dave | vocals/samples/noise
Mike Hook | guitar
Herb Jowett | bass
Robert Lepor | drums


Philadelphian sludge with a crusty edge to it, this seven track album is very unpleasant. Eyehategod could be a starting point- especially taking into account such song titles as “Smoke More Crack”.  “Street Zombies” starts purposefully with a sinister riff and a grimy production job that is raw and loud. The vocals, when they appear are distorted and nasty.

“My Jihad is Against my Head” is a lumbering groove and is an unholy noise in every respect. “Dope Fiend Jesus” is just feral with its insistent riffing and utilisation of quiet/loud dynamics. “Home Grown Terrorist” is as you would expect it to sound- nice stop start riffing here, along with a nice bass led break down too.

“Fucked Up (All I’ll Ever Be)” has some stoner-ish riffs along with the main course of sludge and a cool solo section to go with it- good time change too. “15 Years and Counting” provides six minutes plus of uneasy listening and creepy riffs that really sum up the hopeless mood of this record. There are some sections which reminded me a little of Helmet too- staccato riffs with groove. Excellent! The aforementioned “Smoke More Crack” finishes this opus of horror in fine threatening style. The album is a harrowing listen.

Put simply, if you like EHG, Iron Monkey and even the pale imitators of those bands treading the boards at the moment, you will enjoy this. It is feral, aggressive, noisy, sludge of the best quality. You might feel like taking a shower afterwards, though.

Words by: Richard Maw

‘Things Never Change’ can be purchased here

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