So-called melodic thrash metal has seen better days, as many newer bands seem to have buried the melodies. Not so with Hold on Humanity, a heavy-as-hell quintet out of Queens, N.Y., that knows how to keep the music hard without losing some semblance of melody. Unfortunately, after many lineup changes in three years, Hold on Humanity still lacks a firm grip on writing memorable songs. At least for now.
Tunes like Warning Shot's title track and "Brand New Life" don't end when they should, spinning out of control near what should be their conclusions, going off on musical tangents that seem unrelated to the given song's earlier arrangements. Nevertheless, I hear a lot of potential in these five tracks. Singer James Annucci at times sounds like a less-disciplined James Hetfield, and the band as a whole often sounds like a less-adventurous, mid-period Metallica.
(Note: Had I first listened to the horribly recorded and embarrassing live bonus disc labeled "Press Promo CD" that came with Warning Shot, I probably would have given this outfit a lower score. Here's a friendly hint, guys: If it's for the press, make it sound, well, you know, good.)
1) Without Warning (4:42)
2) Brand New Life (5:59)
3) Killing A Friend (5:22)
4) The Awakening (6:25)
5) Possession (4:33)
Total Time: 27:00