Black vinyl with lyric insert. Limited 333 copies
With high purity heavy metal music it is often easy to forget that heavy metal grew out of rock n ’roll. Back in the 70’s an increasing number of bands had heavy’d up the rock until it was apparent that something new was being born. By the 80’s this new quantity has not only been purified, but began to be genetically altered and refined until it spawned a slew of sub genres from doom metal to thrash metal and from power metal to black metal. Not that rock itself was done, but the majority who retained noticeable traits of it, were mostly mired in it and had little of the viciousness and heaviness of metal (having apparently traded it for mascara and hair spray). There were a few though, who managed to combine the strengths of both, Motorhead being the best and most widely known of these. This musical alchemy was a high art though, and most who attempted it failed mightily, left only with the misshapen and lumpen results of their overreaching. True practitioners of the arcane art of heavy metal rock n’ roll are a rare bread, to be highly valued when found…and Asomvel is of that breed and bloodline…and one of its most gifted and powerful members. The first side is three unreleased studio tracks beginning with “Fast Women (And Slow Horses)”. Urgent and pushing bass propels the beast, while nasty, shrapnel spitting guitar, courtesy of Lenny Robinson, assaults with a frenzy of metallic riffing and piercing soloing. The drums pin it all down with a granite like solidity, while over it all Jay-Jay intones the tale with a gruff and gravelly authority. Yes, it sounds a little bit like Motorhead, but first off that is never a bad thing (even sometimes a saving grace), and secondly there is a lot more to this lot than just that. Second track “Blood Eye” is a wonderfully gritty yarn about impending violence that moves with the solid confidence and restrained swagger of the one who knows his own capacity for mayhem and can enjoy the savouring of it before hand. Seriously compelling and bluntly menacing, any man who has ever been pushed too far is going to relate to this one to the hilt. A song you need to own. “Drudgery” ups the tempo for a scathing indictment of settling for routine that carries an almost punkish vibe, but is routed firmly in rocking metal by the tightness of the speeding train drums, the explosive mayhem of the guitar, and the unrelenting pummelling of the bass. Over on side two, we have the 2005 demo committed to vinyl for the first time. “Fast Women (& Slow Horses)” makes a re-appearance in a rawer form, followed by “Invertebrate”, which you should know by now from the Kamikaze album, but you need in its rawer, younger form also. “To Hell With All The Rest” finishes it all off with a charging, rollicking and exuberant auditory pipe bomb of attitude. It well balances defiant air punching fun and menace, feeling like an outlaw biker party that is still fun but starting to get that vibe where some rough and bad stuff is coming down soon.
1. Fast Women (And Slow Horses)
2. The Blood Eye
4. Fast Women (And Slow Horses)-demo 2005
5. Invertebrate-demo 2005
6. To Hell With All The Rest-demo 2005