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Headless Crown - Time For Revolution

Headless Crown
Time For Revolution
by Tony Playter at 04 January 2016, 10:27 PM

Sometimes pulling on the nostalgia string creates that feel good factor, and a sense of linage harking back to fantastic bands. Sometimes they come across as clichéd and you play the game with yourself of ‘where have I heard this before,’ coming to the answer ‘the 80s.’ HEADLESS CROWN falls somewhere between those sentiments, you find yourself smiling at the less than subtle nods to 80’s thrash and early 80’s NWOBM while wanting to avoid acknowledging the clichés.

The World Screams” seems to pull this off, offering sing-along rhymes over chugging riffs interspersed with a bit of shred. The harmonised solo and the moody breakdown make the song stand out. For fan of late 80’s techy Thrash (code for Annihilator) “Here Comes The Night” is a song for you, with meaningful metaphorical lyrics and tender harmonies. The 3rd track and my favourite on the album is “Edge of Sanity” for the layered sing-along vocals and the dazzling guitar work of Ced Legger“Stranded” opens with the rhythm section building for the guitar and vocals to come in, and feels less formulaic than the opening trio of tunes, and it’s the first time you can make out the bass clearly. Hopefully in their future releases they’ll get a mix that can showcase all the band members at the same time, rather than the guitar/vocal centric mix that leaves it sounding one sided and slightly unfinished. One song that does manages this is “Reach Out (For The Light),” not only has it got a better mix but it’s also the most textured track so far on the album, opening with chorus laden guitars (cough, very 80s) and as seems to a be hallmark, great solos. The Fight, reach out for the light line is probably something you’ve heard before, but it comes across as so genuine you know it’s going to be killer live to sing to.

At the risk of repeating the points made for earlier songs in the 2nd half of the album, I’ll just point out the highlights. “Lonely Eagle” has one of the best solos on the album, and good dynamics with the gentle mid-section. The penultimate track “Evil Rising” has a subtle bounce to the opening riff, not a standard headbang tune, it’s something you can groove to. “Men Or Machines” is a strong closer, and follows what seems to be the rule of putting the longest track last. I wouldn’t add the song to a playlist (Tracks 4 and 5 definitely though), but it ends the album on a satisfying note.

Production wise it sounds like they were trying to get classic 80s metal sound through modern digital technology (I may be wrong admittedly), the result being it sounded hollow through most of it. The drumming didn’t overdo it, nor did he add to the songs. I’m not sure if it’s any reflection on Carlos Bensabat, or he was let down in the mix (I’m leaning towards the latter.) On the upside though the vocals were spot on for what they sounded like they were aiming for.

For a debut album this was a solid effort, and after checking their live videos on their channel I can say they sound great live and look like 80s veterans as opposed to newer generations of bands with that vibe who struggle to pull it off with the credibly HEADLESS CROWN exude in their music.

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. The World Scream
2. Here Comes The Night
3. Edge Of Sanity
4. Stranded
5. Reach Out (for The Light)
6. Hellhounds
7. Searching For My Soul
8. Lonely Eagle
9. Be Seeing You
10. Evil Rising
11. Men Or Machines
Lineup:
Steff Perrone - Vocals
Carlos Bensabat - Drums
Mack Machet - Bass
Ced Legger - Lead Guitar
Manu Froelicher - Rhythm Guitar
Record Label: Massacre Records
     


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