Hamerex are a heavy metal band from the UK formed in 2004 releasing their debut album ‘Rites Of Passage’ in 2012 and the follow-up ‘IX’ the year after. 2015 saw the release of ‘The Last Ride’ E.P. which was quickly followed in 2016 by the bands third album ‘Traitor’. 2018 has seen Hamerex announce an E.P. trilogy ‘The Abyss’, part one to be released Friday 13th April. The four song E.P. contains two new songs, as well as new recordings of ‘The Dark Tower’ (from the ‘Traitor’ album) and ‘The Extremist’ (from the ‘IX’ album).
Launching the new E.P. is the re-recorded ‘The Extremist’, delivered at a blistering pace, and with a lot more aggression and ferocity than the original from what I remember. Founding member, guitarist Steve Blower, continues with the vocal duties, spitting venom with every rasp and growl, as ‘The Extremist’ hurtles past at break neck speed. A Slayer like brutality accompanies ‘The Extremist’ from start to finish, with vigorous head banging the order of the day. The first new song ‘Broken’ brings forth a shuddering heaviness, propelled forward by the awesome buzzing guitar sound synonymous with the iconic NWOBHM evolution during the eighties. ‘Broken’ has pace too, galloping hard like a Grand National winner towards the finish line.
The guitar led intro to the second re-recorded song ‘The Dark Tower’ sets a sinister, almost menacing atmosphere as it rumbles into life, with a relentless chugging rhythm pushing the song along. Hamerex are a British band, proudly delivering the classic and traditional style of heavy metal, yet with this new release, a thrash metal influence has had a striking effect on the bands sound. In fact, if this is your first experience of Hamerex, you might actually think that they are indeed, a thrash metal band.
The final song from the first release in the E.P. trilogy, and the second new song, is ‘Crucifixion’, featuring the bands bass player on lead vocals. ‘Crucifixion’ continues with the bands rougher and gruffer sound, mixing elements of thrash and NWOBHM with the heavy riffing style of seventies era Black Sabbath. With each release, Hamerex have evolved and progressed their sound, yet have still managed to keep their British roots intact. ‘The Abyss Vol.1’ has set the standard very high for the rest of the trilogy to follow, with the expectation level very high for what is still to come.
Overall, a thundering and head bangingly addictive release from a band at the top of their game, proudly delivering the traditional British heavy metal sound.
Iron Mathew Collins
The Dark Tower