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Raging Speedhorn - Hard to Kill

Raging Speedhorn
Hard to Kill
by Kevin Lewis at 09 November 2020, 6:57 PM

Formed in 1998, UK Doom/Sludge metal Veterans RAGING SPEEDHORN are back with a new offering. “Hard To Kill” is the sixth full-length album by this band and was released through Red Weed Records on October 23, 2020. Right off the bat, you hear their attitude on the first song, “Snakebite”. The guitars sprint out of the gate and the drums/bass keep pace. This is enhanced by the dual vocals the band uses.

Next up is the plodding crusher “Doom Machine”. Varying the speeds throughout the song, they keep the song fresh and vital. These guys have multiple speeds, from slow and lumbering to frenetic thrash metal. They play both with equal skill. The next song I need to mention is the title track, “Hard To Kill”. That opening riff with the drum beat accompanying it is, well, awesome. Then the first verse starts with a drum/bass combo. Mixing up the instrumentation into primary groupings is a skill I love to hear. This is also closer to the thrash end of their sound.

By contrast, “Hammer Down” starts with a bass line and some serious gloom and doom riffage. Never getting above a moderate pace, this mid-tempo sludge tune just slowly brings you to their promised land. While RAGING SPEEDHORN can thrash, this is their niche. “Hand Of God” and “Brutality” both have a faster tempo, but don’t hit the true thrash speeds they showed earlier on. This shows the band can run at whatever speed they want.

The last song on the record is a cover of a T. REX song, “Children Of The Revolution”. A much heavier version due to the tuning and attitude of the song, it feels like the song now belongs to this band. They absolutely make this song their own by giving it their signature sound. Cover tunes are not always easy. Some bands do them better than others. This is one of the better adaptations I have heard recently.

RAGING SPEEDHORN is one of those bands that plays good, solid metal. Whether they are slowly lurking along, trying to lull you into a false sense of security before they run you over or speeding along, daring you to try to keep up, they can handle all of that. They have two guitarists who can vary their tones and speeds to fit the songs well. The songs are catchy and quick. There are not a lot of complicated compositions, but the songs are well written and easy to follow.

Overall, this is a band that should be touring with their peers, running around Europe and the UK hitting the festival circuit. They could get over to Asia and should hit North America for some quicker tours, but they also need to get full promotion and support in Central and South America where the metal scene is rabid and always looking for something new. I hope they get out into the world in support of this record as soon as they can.

Songwriting:  8
Musicianship:  9
Memorability:  8
Production:  7


4 Star Rating

1. Snakebite
2. Doom Machine
3. Spitfire
4. Hard To Kill
5. Hammer Down
6. Hand Of God
7. Brutality
8. The Best
9. Children Of The Revolution (T. Rex Cover)
Daniel Cook – Vocals
Frank Regan – Vocals
Andy Gilmour – Bass
Gordon Morison – Drums
James Palmer – Guitar
Andy Gilmour – Guitar
Record Label: Red Weed Records


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