Hamerex are a heavy metal band from the UK formed in 2004 releasing their debut album in 2013 and the follow-up the year after. An E.P. was released in 2015 and the bands new album ‘Traitor’ is set for release in 2016.
The new album is yet again another progression for the band. Continuing with founding member Steve Blower on vocal duties, the sound of this release differs to the previous release. Still hints strongly at the NWOBHM sound, but harks back to the seventies sound when the likes of Black Sabbath were creating the heavy metal genre. The new album opens with the title song ‘Traitor’, a heavy grooved stomp of thunderous proportions. The pace of ‘Traitor’ isn’t quite the accustomed doom metal pace but is none the less a slow and heavy song that will have your feet tapping hard and your head nodding in an appreciative manner. The guitar led intro for ‘The Dark Tower’ sets a sinister and dark atmosphere before the rumbling rhythm rolls in and ‘The Dark Tower’ chugs into life. The mid tempo pace of the album shows no sign of changing as ‘Dead Mountain’ blasts off in an explosion of drums and assumes a very heavy, very hard hitting stomp.
The guitars buzz like a chainsaw, echoing the late seventies/early eighties NWOBHM evolution, yet when the ‘The Nameless One’ hits the airways you think a ballad is forthcoming…wrong! Too heavy and too strong a vocal performance, the pace swings effortlessly from borderline ballad to a heavy doom style groove. Raising the energy levels and indeed the dark atmosphere, ‘Eyes Of Deceit’ is an upbeat romp with a touch of the melodic too. Although there is only eight songs on offer here, you do get a lot of music as three are over five minutes long, three are over six minutes long, with the longest clocking in at over nine minutes. The shortest song on the album is ‘The Abyss’ which is a cracking slab of atmospheric proportions. ‘The Abyss’ builds and builds towards a crescendo as it strides majestically on to a conclusion.
‘The Evil Within’ is one of those longer style epic songs that British stalwarts Iron Maiden are famous for. Hamerex have managed to create a masterpiece here, with buzzing, chugging guitars and an infectious rhythm. Whilst not a high speed, high tempo song, it does rumble slightly quicker than any other song, until the mid section breakdown. Showcasing the musicianship of the band, ‘The Evil Within’ is a superb song with many twists and turns as it meanders on its way. Bringing the album to a close is the aptly titled ‘Journey’s End’ as this has been a journey through a sparkling blend of old school NWOBHM, traditional British heavy metal and the seventies inspired evolutionary sound. ‘Journey’s End’ is bombastic and will appeal to all the head bangers out there who want to let there heads to the talking. A galloping rhythm with heavy guitars, this is a great end to a very good album.
Overall, traditional British heavy metal by a British heavy metal band, echoing the late seventies/early eighties evolutionary sound of the NWOBHM.
Review By Iron Mathew Collins