IX Review (Loud Stuff)

Hamerex have been on the up for a while now, so when they dropped us a link to their latest album, IX, we were chomping at the bit to check out what the chaps had been up to. Featuring Chris Moules on Vocals, Steve Blower on Guitars/Snyth/Vocals, Andy Firth on Bass and Synth, and Darren Kelsall on Drums, the band have released their latest offering through their own label, IX Music, and promise a hell of a ride – so what of the music?

Kicking into being with IX Circles we’re ushered into an old school mix of hammering guitar work, rumbling bass lines and solid drum work, the mix forming into the sort of sound that’s sure to get heads banging and fists pumping from the off. Accompanying the solid rock edge with a hint of darkness, the mix on offer here seems to act as a lead in to the album getting going fully, hinting at the sound we’re in for whilst not giving away everything that’s in store. It’s when The Life Of Death comes into being that the full force of Hamerex is revealed, forging a sound that’s bass heavy, packed with distortion but refrained enough to get the listener involved. Once again harking back to the glory days of metal there’s a real sense of catchiness going on here, bringing about images of the likes of Iron Maiden and Judas Priest whilst still managing to stamp their own sense of authority onto the mix. Different levels of vocals bombard the listener, backed up by the solid guitar work and continued rumbling bass, setting the album in motion and suggesting that it’s going to be exactly what was promised.

Inferno manages to once again back this idea up, kicking off with pumping guitar lines and straight down the line drum work before continuing to build on the already established sound. This time hinting towards Metallica in some ways, there’s hook after hook designed to keep you listening, keep you intrigued and keep you coming back for more – from duel guitar lines through to that solid vocal line. Edge Of Madness is another example of this, this time nodding towards Slayer and Anthrax in some ways, but at the same time still keeping you aware of who it is you’re listening to. In my opinion, this track is one which holds some serious single potential, it’s got the sound that will hook people in and enough power to go down incredibly well on the live scene – definitely a track to make sure you check out.

As the album continues we’re propelled through The Extremist, Mortuary, The Stranger and Descent Of Angels before reaching the stand out moments of The Night Of Samhain. Demonstrating their awareness of song writing as well as their ability to play their instruments, this is a track which progresses through different movements, from the soft and melodic opening acoustic moments and onto the more distorted main section, there’s a continual aural assault designed to keep you involved and wanting more. Standing out as a serious high point on the record, this track is one which takes you through movements, tells a story and makes you question how you’d never come across Hamerex before – once again a moment to make sure you get into as soon as you can.

Coming to a close with Still the Wall Remains we’re once again led gently into things before finishing on an almighty ‘hurrah’, closing the album as it began and leaving no doubt that this is a band on the rise, a band we should be paying some serious attention to, and a band that we can’t afford to ignore any longer.

I’ve been aware of Hamerex for a while now and it’s very cool to see them progressing and achieving more and more with their music. The latest album, IX, demonstrates their desire to improve, progress, and achieve, showing that when there’s a real sense of dedication backed up by ability, the possibilities really are endless.

Rating: 9/10

Dave Nicholls
Loud Stuff
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