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H.E.R.O. – Alternate Realities Award winner

H.E.R.O.
Alternate Realities
by Issy Herring at 22 May 2022, 9:13 AM

H.E.R.O. are a modern rock/metal trio from Copenhagen, Denmark, formed in 2014. They have just released their brand-new album called “Alternate Realities”. Five singles were revealed as a predecessor to the upcoming album; “Made to Be Broken”, “Gravity”, “Lead the Blind”, “Oxygen” and “Monster”. Fast forward a year after the initial single was released, H.E.R.O.’s third studio album “Alternate Realities” was revealed on March 18th, 2022, independently.

The first track on the new release is “Gravity”. The song starts off with an intriguing synthesizer sound, before jumping right in with an addictive guitar riff – definitely certain to get your head bopping in no time! Christoffer Stjerne’s vocals are very effective in this track, with the chorus being ridiculously infectious. The track seems to speak lyrically about a broken relationship; with Stjerne singing lyrics such as “You're looking for ways to convince me to stay / Still I'm off and away from your arms / It's easy to say that your son walks away / Cause he's lost and astray from his home / But he's not!” Next up is “Lead the Blind”, which contains an introduction sounding like a recent track from BOSTON MANOR. This is another very catchy song, which reels you in from the first hook! Nearer the end of the track, it contains a very interesting electronic sounding bridge which certainly keeps your interest levels high as a listener.

“Never Be the Same” starts off on a very similar note to the last, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing! Christoffer Stjerne’s vocals are slightly different on this song, adding almost an R&B flavour which works well. You are intrigued by this track from the get-go, with the booming instrumentals at the end of the chorus really adding something special. “Oxygen” starts off very well with a fantastic guitar riff, which seems inspired by bands such as HOLDING ABSENCE. Christoffer Stjerne’s lovely head vocals are evident here, which is a pleasant change to other songs on the album so far.

“Made to Be Broken” is a slightly softer track, instantly reminding me of something that NORMANDIE would create, with similar punchy instrumentals used throughout. This song also contains a hard-hitting chorus which is sure to resonate with a lot of rock and metal fans alike. “Personal” brings us back to the heavier, grittier sound that H.E.R.O. is most recognised for. The verses and chorus sound like a musical hybrid of ARCHITECTS and BRING ME THE HORIZON, with Christoffer Stjerne’s vocals sounding identical to OLI SYKES at times. Another memorable and catchy chorus is featured here, helping to make the song exciting from start to finish. “Cynical” is the next track, which gives us a juicy, guitar heavy instrumental at the beginning. Then Stjerne’s vocals kick in, really showcasing his vocal talent yet again. As the track goes on, another infectious chorus appears, looking to get in our head! His higher vocals sound very similar to DANCE GAVIN DANCE’s TILLIAN PEARSON in this song, just like the last.

“Monster” is up next, which features Swiss symphonic metal singer MELISSA BONNY, who is the vocalist from AD INFINITIUM. The song is just amazing from beginning to end, with MELISSA BONNYs vocals really adding some depth. This makes it a standout track on the whole album, as it is so different from the others. “Bring Me Back to Life” is different again, with a pounding synth beat leading the way to the chorus. The synthesizers carry on until the chorus and beyond, adding some diversity to the album. The final track on the album is “Heavy Heart”, which changes things up again at a slower pace this time round. This is a beautiful rock ballad, in which you can really hear Christoffer Stjerne’s raw emotion throughout. It is most certainly the perfect ending for this album.

Overall, I think this album is truly amazing and most definitely my cup of tea! From start to finish, I was completely hooked with outstandingly catchy melodies and choruses throughout; keeping me on my toes! For anyone getting into rock and metal, “Alternate Realities” is a fantastic album to start with. It has a bit of something for all listeners, with heartfelt ballads as well as guitar heavy bangers, making this album so diverse. A total winner for me!

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 8
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Gravity
2. Lead the Blind
3. Never Be the Same
4. Oxygen
5. Made to Be Broken
6. Personal
7. Cynical
8. Monster
9. Bring Me Back to Life
10. Heavy Heart
Lineup:
Christoffer Stjerne – Vocals/Guitars
Søren Itenov – Guitars
Johan Wohlert - Bass
Anders Kirkegaard – Drums
Record Label: Independent
     


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Edited 10 December 2022
 

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