- Published on Friday, 17 August 2012 11:10
- Written by George Washburn
- Hits: 602
Texas Hippie Coalition – Peacemaker
Texas Hippie Coalition (THC) just released their third album, “Peacemaker” this week, and damn if it is not kicking my ass! I have not yet heard their first two albums, but last night I saw the video for “Turn It Up” and ran straight over to iTunes and bought the album. I was not disappointed.
Hailing from Denison, Texas these guys play groove metal seasoned with blues. My first thought upon hearing them was Pantera. Watching the video I was in awe of the commanding presence of singer Big Dad Ritch. Dude looks, and sounds, like Billy Gibbons ate Phil Anselmo. This man’s voice is truly fucking massive. I have a new hero. Blues and fury in catastrophic proportions, I was entranced by the brilliant sound of this album.
The video for “Turn It Up”, aside from being a killer track, also gives a not so subtle nod to the patron saint of Texas heavy metal, Dimebag Darrell. Dean guitars, The Clubhouse in Dallas, and a shot that pans past a Dime wall of tribute all speak of the bands respect for our fallen brother. Oh yeah, and strippers too, they like strippers.
Most music these days takes a few listens to grow on me, but “Peacemaker” was my new favorite album from the moment I hit play. It is also one of the rare albums that once I get to the end I just want to start listening all over again. I cannot encourage you enough to give these guys a listen. If you pick up the album from iTunes you will also get the bonus track, “Whiskey.”
See below for their video. Turn it up!
Bloodred Hourglass – Lifebound
As hard as it was to tear myself away from Texas Hippie Coalition, it was worth it once I got an earful of “Lifebound”, the debut from Finland’s Bloodred Hourglass.
Bloodred Hourglass (BRHG) mixes death and thrash in a style that sounds similar to that of Lamb of God. For a debut (or even for not) “Lifebound” is a crushing display of metal prowess. Some might call this metalcore, but since I like the album I will call it anything but that. The music is pretty fast and tight and the vocals are harsh and vary between a scream and a growl. They keep a relentless pace that has me downing a lot of coffee to get the caffeine I need to keep bobbing along with the music.
The album has a nice pair of bookend tracks. The opener is “We Lived Like Kings” and the album closer is “We Die Like Heroes.” “We Lived Like Kings” is an instrumental track that leads into “Above All” (which I believe is the single since they made a video for it.) “We Die Like Heroes” closes out the album with the same level of aggression and power that they maintain throughout the album.
“Lifebound” is a solid and consistent offering from a band that I expect will come to be a staple of the metal scene. Check out the video for “Above All.”
Incarnit – Umbra
Incarnit is a thrash band from Karlstad, Sweden and “Umbra” is their second EP. Influenced by thrash titans like Metallica and Slayer, Incarnit are attempting to create a fresh and unique sound within the thrash metal community. Having listened to these five songs repeatedly over the last few weeks I think they are making a good run at doing just what they set out to do.
The music is pretty much what you would expect from thrash, but the vocals really help the band stand above the crowd. The vocals have a rough edge to them in true thrash fashion, but they also contain elements of melody which really hooked me on the songs. Thrash + hooks = stuck in my head.
The production of the EP sounds pretty good too. From a sound quality point of view, I have no complaints. The only thing remotely critical I have to say about these songs is that as a band they still sound like a young band. There is nothing wrong with that, everyone starts somewhere, and I would say they have a head start on most bands. I am sure as they continue to become more experienced their sound will mature as well. I think Incarnit will be a band to watch.
Here is their video for the track “Ritual.”