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Hellion: To Hellion And Back

Hellion came into being in L.A. way back in 1982, however even though the band did release a duo of EPs and trio of late 80s, early 90s albums, there remains a school of thought (and indeed that of Hellion leader Ann Boleyn) that they never received the major label breaks their music deserved. So To Hellion And Back, the band's first output for some eleven years after the stand alone 2003 comeback album Will Not Go Quietly, finds some of the band's early material spread across two discs and with the added temptation of a brand new song. With more one-time members passing through their ranks than space allows detail for, it comes as no surprise that Hellion, 2014, is basically Boleyn and a "new" crew who come with a fair pedigree. Simon Wright (Dio, AC/DC) bangs the tubs, Scott Warren (Dio) plonks the keys, Bjorn Englen (Yngwie Malmsteen) boings the bass, while Maxxxwell Carlisle brings the six string muscle. It an impressive line up and one which does the new track proud.

Surprisingly for an L.A. Band from the early 80s, the sound in evidence is one more based in UK Metal, with Judas Priest springing immediately to mind, early Maiden also a touching point. Although a more US side does also emerge through a Dio (natch) attack and a slice of Vicious Rumors. It's a cracking mix and one that should indeed have gained more traction with the labels of the day, especially when you factor in Boleyn's meaty vocal delivery. This was no chanteuse, no lipstick pouting poser, instead a cross of Doro careening headlong into Rob Halford is closer to the mark and what a mark it makes. Tracks from right throughout the early Hellion era feature, "Backstabber" and "Break The Spell" eagerly revealing a classy yet urgent approach, "Witching Hour" and "The Hand" a power and precision, while a cool cover of Priest's "Exciter" and the biting "Shit (Is Gonna Hit The Fan)" the force and quality required to stand out from the crowd.

Add to that the excellent brand new "Hell Has No Fury" and its Dio like riff (boding well for a further two releases Hellion hope to deliver this year through Cherry Red) and with two songs, including "Run For Your Life", originally produced by none other than Ronnie James Dio himself and there's a huge amount for fans of classic Metal to get in a froth about.

Many bands can claim that had things been different, or in Hellion's case, if people in power had done what they said they had, they had the songs to deserve the breaks. To Hellion And Back proves that this band genuinely did.

Track Listing
1. Backstabber
2. Driving Hard
3. Don't Take No For An Answer
4. Break The Spell
5. Up From The Depths
6. Run For Your Life
7. Get Ready
8. Witching Hour
9. Screams In The Night
10. Upside Down Guitar Solo/
11. The Hand
12. Bad Attitude
13. Tower Of Air

1. Nevermore
2. Exciter
3. The Evil One
4. Breakdown
5. The Black Book
6. Living In Hell
7. Stormrider
8. Demon Attack
9. Resurrection/Will Not Go Quietly
10. Shit (Is Gonna Hit The Fan)
11. Dead and Gone
12. Dream Deceiver
13. Hell Has No Fury

Added: April 19th 2014
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Hellion Online
Hits: 2138
Language: english

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