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Hell's Chopper - First Ride

Hell's Chopper
First Ride
by Daniel Silva at 21 July 2014, 4:59 PM

Rocking out of Italy are Heavy Metallers HELL'S CHOPPER; yet another metal band about motorbikes. Irrevocable cliché’s aside, "First Ride" is a solid piece of well-executed and well-produced metal that is simple by design, and is undeniably powerful. Think a combination of BLACK SABBATH, MOTÖRHEAD, METALLICA, and IRON MAIDEN.

"Mental Blindness" has a strong intro, made up of eerie noodling that leads of unassumingly technical licks and heavy riffs. The Thrash presence is especially strong in this track's choruses, especially accentuated by the aggressive, percussive vocals of Paolo's unique low-range delivery. As could probably be expected, the lead work is stellar, and this reflected on the majority of the following tracks in impressive solo arrangements. "Rock Out (Fool)" is one of the album's strongest points; almost Punk-like in nature, down to its anthemic delivery of the lyrics, especially in the booming, powerful chorus. What we end up with is an ostentatiously energetic amalgamation of styles, that commands us only to shake fists and scream our lungs out.

"Burn the Witches" is another favorite of mine, this time evoking what appears to be a significant NWOBHM influence; rhythmic patterns and vocal arrangements strongly reminiscent of early IRON MAIDEN records. In fact, both lyrically and musically, it is perhaps the track most exemplary of the band's capability as musicians, as it trumps the majority of the track list on both of these counts. "Night of the Storm II" is especially unique; while it seems to begin to translate the sounds of the previous track, the band managed to sneak in surprising and effective musings of other styles, ranging from Power to Thrash, where the music is given a drastic increase in velocity to, ultimately, the right direction.

What truly stands out on this record are the tracks that go past the safe, mid-tempo, rock approach  and incorporate a range of classic metal styles, oftentimes multiple nuances in a single track, however, this may leave some of the other tracks coming off as slightly more lackluster. All in all, a strong release with surprising and pleasing elements that are disguised by initial impressions.

4 Star Rating

1. Mental Blindness
2. Red Blood River
3. Rock Out (Fool)
4. A Chopper from Hells
5. Burn the Witches
6. Night of the Storm II
7. Kingdome's Free
8. A-Train
9. Struggle for Breathe
10. In Your Face
11. Feel the Fire
12. Ride on You!
Paolo De Leonardis – Vocals
Luca Scalese – Rhythm Guitar
Andrea Rusconi – Lead Guitar
Jacopo Longhi – Bass
Patrick Pavesi – Drums
Record Label: Independent


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Edited 01 February 2023

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