If your musical heart lies firmly in the late 80's hard rock arena then
Film Noir by Yorkshire three piece Hellbound Hearts should be a welcome
addition to your album collection. There's a refreshing carefree Wildhearts
style abandon to the playing on this record, backed up with a solid
American down and dirty feel that seems influenced more by the sleaze
of LA Guns than the poppier tones of Poison. The vocals would not sound
out of place over a Shotgun Messiah track. If you think you've heard
all that before, well... you'd be correct. That is exactly where the
appeal lies with this record, an album for the rock n' roll purists
who like their bands to stay true to the elements that define the genre.
Every song overflows with catchy hooks, in the verses as well as the
choruses. Each track has a rich production with layered guitars adding
great depth to the music. The sound is modern, bright and clear but
with plenty of bass. The drums sound big and the vocals sit perfectly
in the mix. The whole shebang oozes 'attitude'. Basically, it's a great
The album starts with a cello and piano setting a dark tone before Suffering
the Radio kicks in as the opening track. An equally impressive
Broken Hearted follows, both these songs scoring highly in
the singalong chorus stakes. Poor Disguises throws caution
to the wind with its double speed punkish blasts before one of the standout
tracks on the album, The Light We Cannot See, takes things
up a level or two. It is here that we see the class of the band in blazing
sonic technicolour; power chords sit over a crunchy throbbing bassline,
and stomping drums fill the verses while yet another catchy vocal leads
us to a chorus of epidemically infectious proportions. Even the middle
breakdown and subsequent build-up are glorious.
The format works for the next track too, Still We Wait, albeit
with a much harder edge to the sleazy chug of guitars. Guitarist / frontman
Danny Lambert really sings out in this track taking his chorus vocals
to a new high. Blood and Wake Up are two free-flowing
guitar rockers with lots of raucous bluster that is perfect for bouncing
off the walls to. An atmospheric piano introduces the next song, its
distanced reverb an interesting juxtaposition to the upfront raw power
of We Are All Alone, another standout track featuring a great
all round band performance, and more of those irresistible vocal melodies.
The energy levels remain high for the four-to-the-floor blast of Fortunes
and the full on guitar workout that is final song Silent Horror
Movie. The album ends to the mantra of "always set to repeat".
With this album, Film Noir by the Hellbound Hearts, those are wise words
Film Noir is due for release 7th April. You can pre-order it here.
Check out the tracks The Light We Cannot See and Suffering
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