Review – Hangfire, ‘Shoot the Crow’

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Hangfire are a hotly tipped quartet from the Ebbw Vale area,  featuring Max Rhead, Lizzy Evans, Bobby Goo and ex-Tigertailz sticksman Matt Blakout. ‘Shoot the Crow’ is this outfits explosive debut.

Hitting play for the first time opener ‘Adrenalise’ is immediately reminiscent of the riffage of Stone Sour (with a hint of Volume 3 era Slipknot), certainly not what I was expecting from the press pack that accompanied the album!

As I gorge my way through this rock n roll family bucket, it is clear to hear that this album has been painstakingly formulated, with choruses that get lodged into your brain and guitar solos that you can hum on queue – not to mention a breakdown or two for good measure. Stand out tracks include ‘Adrenalise’, ‘Shoot the Crow’, ‘Faith In Me’ and ‘Drop the Bomb’.

What I find really striking is the band’s ability to inject a serious dose of 80’s rock influence into the mix (e.g. ‘For Crying Out Loud’ featuring a very Maiden guitar break) and sit it alongside post-grunge heaviness (think Seether, Drowning Pool etc) without it sounding dated; quite the opposite!

As a whole the album is a cherry picked concoction of the best bits of the last 30 years of rock, thrown in a blender and served up as this very moreish cocktail; Take one 80’s metal solo, throw in a nu metal breakdown, add a dash of grunge groove and serve on the rocks – a must listen for 2012

Jarrad ‘Nöir’ Owens

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