Pick Your Rock and Metal

Monday, April 08, 2013

From Bergen the Youngblood explodes...

SOMEWHERE in Norway there is a factory producing great music - and somehow - we're not sure we missed the release earlier of Audrey Horne's fantastic album Youngblood - and what an epic hard rock album it is.

From the start it is hard rock the way it is meant to be played as Redemption Blues tears out with strong vocals and battling twin guitar attack.

This is a band that knows it roots - from the sound of many two axe bands such as Lizzy and UFO, through to the echoes of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal.

And, with the rousing Straight Into Your Grave tipping a hat to Death Alley Driver and the Bonnet epoch of Rainbow.

Throughout Youngblood this is hard rock laid down with passion and verve - taking what could have been another formulaic clatter of songs and giving them the edge - as proved by the title track, which has a refrain that most bands that would die for.

The only weak track is There Goes a Lady - it stands head and shoulders above the usual crap, but it does tend towards what one expects of the hard rock genre.

However, the rest of the album has balance, poise, and the sort of hooks and riffs - check out Pretty Little Sunshine and you may never get the chorus out of your head.

The balance is evident in the arrangement of the album - the lyrically similar to Alestorm - The Open Sea is followed by the frenetic This Ends Here and the album closer The King is Dead has the mid-paced power many seek and few will find.

Lyrically it is darker than many hard rock acts can manage, but this lends an edge to the songs.

Fans of local acts Trucker, Million$Reload, A Little Bitter and Screaming Eagles will find much to enjoy here - but most of all this is an album that stands for itself.

As guitarist Ice Dale told Belfastmetalheadsreunited earlier (see interview here) this was an album that was targeted at their own tastes.

"Actually we didn't think too much when we made this album," said Dale. "We just jammed and had a lot of fun. There are a lot of influences from all the bands we listened to when we grew up and we just mixed it with our own sound and our own way of approaching it."

Surely that is the secret for great rock and metal.

Youngblood is now available on Napalm Records and Audrey Horne will be playing the Limelight on April 29th - see ya there!

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