XII Boar – Beyond The Valley Of The Triclops (Self-released)

Genre: Metal

Let’s get one thing straight – XII Boar are damn good fun and Beyond The Valley Of The Triclops is the perfect soundtrack to an afternoon swilling cider in a sun-drenched field or sweltering festival tent. Hell, one of their swaggering, riff-packed songs is called Penetrator and seems to be about a legendary sword (cursed, of course). I mean, just look at the cover…

And when the Hampshire boys are on song, they make you feel like heavy, balls out rock ‘n’ roll is the only thing that matters: the phenomenal, surging El Mucho Grande is a case in point, with its biker metal verve and unstoppable groove. The Hustle is in a similar vein, good time music that embraces the whiskey-soaked spirit of Motörhead and raises its middle finger to beard-stroking pretentiousness.

Yet at times, the trio come across like a pub rock Orange Goblin: Beggars Roost lacks a performance to match its doomy vibe, Black and Blues, though not without merit, doesn’t exactly evoke the twilight haze of the Mississippi delta, and Triclops is a stodgy ending, lacking the energy of earlier tracks.

Still, on the whole Beyond The Valley Of The Triclops is a great party album, and one worth raising a drinking horn to.

RUSHONROCK RATED: 6.5/10 Dino-rock