We welcome the return of Halestorm and check out the new album from Raketkanon (pictured).
There’s new music from Stearica and melodic metal mob Lancer.
Plus we check out Diesel King, Speak Low If You Speak Love and The King Lot.
Every Sunday we reveal the RUSHONROCK RECORD OF THE WEEK. And we round up the very BEST OF THE REST.
RUSHONROCK RECORD OF THE WEEK
Genre: Hard Rock
By the end of 2015 Halestorm will be a mainstream hard rock act capable of following Paramore, Alter Bridge and Black Stone Cherry into the UK’s arena big leagues.
That’s no criticism of Into The Wild – don’t for a minute fear Lzzy and co. have sold out with superstardom so close. It’s simply that this band’s time is now thanks to a record full to bursting with amplified attitude, kickass choruses and a production that wouldn’t sound out of place on the prime MTV anthems that soundtracked the Hale household when the kids were still in short pants.
Come to think of it Lzzy still rocks short pants now. But this girl is all grown up on tracks like I Am The Fire, Gonna Get Mine and I Like It Heavy.
The 80s fade on opener Scream works an absolute treat while Dear Daughter recalls BSC’s equally emotive Things My Father Said and will surely afford Halestorm the same critical acclaim as Lzzy dovetails perfectly with a simple piano melody.
Into The Wild? More like into the consciousness of music fans everywhere. All hail Halestorm. Simon Rushworth
RUSHONROCK RATED: 9/10 Wild And Willing
BEST OF THE REST
Genre: Indie Rock/Acoustic Rock
Over the years there has been an endless list of failed side projects but every now and again a real gem is produced. And that is exactly what State Champs frontman Ryan Scott Graham has delivered with this stripped down acoustic record.
From the opening track Art School, a funky, laid back number reminiscent of American indie/folk act Lord Huron, to the deeply personal take on a breakup Eight Weeks, Graham has a perfect mix of passion and technical composition to make for an easy listening, yet moving piece of work.
With lyrical word play, and an excellent blend of percussion and guitar, the album’s stand out comes in the shape of Tiny Furnace, an emotional track in which Graham compares his relationship to a furnace which burns him like the coal inside.
This emotional album comes with a soft approach for an easy listen, and is one that should not fall through your grasp. Adam Keys
RUSHONROCK RATED: 8/10 Speak Easy
Genre: Hard Rock
Scottish power trio The King Lot comes at us with an old school approach that is drenched in 80s rock, with an undeniable influence of Bon Jovi and Guns N Roses.
One Of These Days comes packed with 80s compositional clichés, containing everything from a hard hitting drum intro to the chorus, along with the cheesy rock “Yeah Yeah!” before breaking into the full swing.
While One Of These Days may have Bon Jovi written all over it, Addicted takes on a modern Motley Crue approach, with a track that could fit seamlessly into 2008’s Saints Of Los Angeles.
While these tracks have clear influences, Ghost Of You simply lifts Slash’s iconic riff from Sweet Child O’ Mine, and placed it on loop throughout the track.
With good rowdy rock and roll albums few and far between, the strong influence of these great acts only adds to the charm of the album, making it one that people will be queuing up to see performed on the live stage. AK
RUSHONROCK RATED: 8/10 Lot To Offer
Genre: Sludge/Extreme Metal
Metal needs bands like Diesel King. Anyone who witnessed the band’s incendiary Hammerfest set this year will attest to that. Here was an act with hunger in their bellies and fistfuls of titanic, sludge-caked riffs to hurl into the audience… plus a vocalist in Mark O’Regan who didn’t so much own the stage as hook it to a lorry cab and tow it back to his gaff.
This debut, thankfully, ensures DK’s healthy rep won’t just be confined to the live arena: opener Brainhammer sets the tone as O’Regan growls over a brutal, downtuned groove and Inferis follows up with a jaw splintering right hook, while the title track is four and a half minutes of pulverising, granite hard metal.
Apart from their commendable commitment to unleashing aural violence in straight to the point fashion, the quintet also excel at blending sludge, hardcore and death metal into a genuinely exciting, exhilarating sound of their own. And they don’t give two plaid shirts about hipster trends either.
If these guys were from Louisiana, rather than London, you’d probably have heard more about them by now. However, if there’s any justice, Diesel King will reign from the Thames to the Mississippi. Richard Holmes
RUSHONROCK RATED: 9/10 Royal Rumble
Genre: Post Rock/Experimental
Born as lengthy, improvised jams and then edited down for public consumption, the nine tracks on Fertile are a mixed bag: you have the jaunty, spirited Halite, which brings to mind Belfast instrumentalists And So I Watch You From Afar, and the bass laden, noisy Bes, which combined with sublime opener Delta, show Stearica can sculpt engaging, exciting post rock. Indeed, for all their experimental leanings, the band aren’t afraid to inject some heaviness into proceedings – Nur being a good example.
Unfortunately the likes of Amreeka and extended, avant garde closer Shah Mat fail to spark and you’re left wondering why the Italian trio don’t just concentrate on their more up-tempo efforts, where their rhythmic dynamism is brought to the fore.
However, you’re certainly left wanting more from Stearica, that’s for sure – and we’ll look forward to album number three. RH
RUSHONROCK RATED: 6.5/10 Sowing The Seeds
Genre: Melodic Metal/Trad Metal
Pedal to the metal opener Running From The Tyrant leaves little to the imagination where Lancer are concerned. Too much time spent listening to your mate’s Helloween records isn’t always a bad thing but this is a brazen imitation of the legendary German metallers’ best work.
Elements of classic Maiden add to an occasionally intoxicating mix and if Second Storm is rarely original then at least it rolls along at a rapid pace. Lancer don’t hang about and before you know it nine-minute epic Aton is taking centre stage – splitting this reassuringly predictable record right down the middle.
Fast and furious riffs, earnest vocals and fantasy-inspired imagery are par for the course in the trad metal world and this album boasts all three genre staples in spades.
It’s big but it’s not clever. And that’s why Second Storm is – against all odds – so much fun. SR
RUSHONROCK RATED: 7/10 Second Helping?
Genre: Post Rock/Sludge/Hardcore
If Royal Blood are a just a little too soft for your liking then Belgium’s edgiest export since Hercule Poirot have unravelled the mystery surrounding the identity of your new favourite band.
Unpleasantly loud, jarringly angular and utterly at odds with musical convention, Kvelertak’s bastard cousins can’t, however, resist shooting themselves in the creative foot.
Fleetingly they promise a fabulously febrile antidote to mainstream rock but frontman Pieter-Paul Devos tries too hard to buck the trend and frequently misses the point.
Lyrics are secondary to feeling according to Raketkanon but too much of RKTKN#2 leaves the listener feeling nothing but sheer frustration. Noise is fine but noise for the sake of noise? Nah.
Much-hyped and much loved by heavy music’s tastemakers, Raketkanon might be alt rock’s next big thing. Big deal. SR
RUSHONROCK RATED: 4/10 Kanon Fodder