Rites of Passage Review (Pagan Hel Reviews)

Formed in the Wakefield area of West Yorkshire in August 2004 by the wonderful Steve Blower the band’s guitarist, synth and backing vocals extraordinaire this band play some extremely awe inspiring catchy melodic tracks.

I have followed the band for what seems like an eternity now and although I don’t live in West Yorkshire caught the band playing live on the Snooty Fox Live Stream last year and what a performance! The band have grown in confidence and produced such great songs and now I finally have the chance to review the amazing “Rites of Passage” in its entirety.

The cover depicts five mean looking stone monks holding what appears to be a baby with the Hamerex logo in red above and the album title in gothic scripture below. The accompanying booklet contains all the juicy lyrics and on the back pages a photo of the band members – it is a well thought out and produced CD on all accounts.

After Shocks of Death
Delicate this track is not! It thunders into life with brutal ferocity, and a heavy tempo that is both catchy and melodic with heaps of energy and vocally nice and raw. The guitar is brought to the forefront with resounding quality and depth.

The Headless Horseman
The chugging melodic crunch reverbs from the speakers Hamerex are here! Nice crisp guitars that have that vibrant quality which will have you on your knees begging for mercy!

One mean bass hook and raucous vocals give life to this mean little specimen. Now I remember why I like Hamerex so much – driving riffs and thunderous drums with loads of shredding! This is really brutally powerful and the rhythm is fantastic!

With another melodic chug Hypnotise lives up to its name. This track has enough bite than a venomous snake about to attack its prey! Quite dark and sinister it plods on wrapping itself around your audial cavities and throttles you stupid! Again some amazing shredding that must leave Steve and Joe with blisters! Great track!

The Lycan
Begins virulently with more chugging than an express train, but not too sure about the vocals on this track as they sound a little flat – musically it is malicious as it comes with some excellent drums, a mean bass hook and excellent guitar that shatter’s the ears.

Rites of Passage
A slower more classical feel to it that soon bursts the bubble and expires into a fierce emotional track again with that Hamerex melodic chug! Devilishly heavy riffs that melt with resounding ear splitting intensity!

Army of Darkness
Inspires movement of the head as this track springs into life with that consistent Hamerex chug we all know and love!

To the end
Awesome start to what is thoroughly an epic track. Chanting rhythmic vocals amidst some amazing riffs and beats – this is really superb! Be crushed by the tempos and unrelenting ferocity that Hamerex stand for in abundance. A great anthemic rocker!

Gates of Hades
With the surging of marching drum beats and thunderous chords the vocals engage into a mad onslaught of mercilessness. Growing in strength this track is vicious! Extreme in riffs, savage drum beats and cruel bass – Meet you at the Gates!!

Waste Away
Harsh and enthusiastic melodious beats push you forward into a barrage of sound. The speakers reverberating loudly make everything shudder in its wake! Unrelenting musical savagery but sadly the vocals sound thin and flat in certain places that is a shame as this is one hell of a track!

To sum up the vocals content on certain tracks do sound slightly off centre but this CD has plenty of exciting moments contained within it – the melodic charm and raucous beats have that allure and charisma that hold a certain fascination that will appeal to all the rockers out there.

The Hamerex magic is only just beginning and warrants hitting the repeat button at least another three times to once again experience the dynamism from within.
Check out the band on the links above and feel the catchy melodic tempos as they escort you to another world.


Pagan Hel Reviews

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