Band: Heads for the Dead
Title: Slash ‘n’ Roll
Label: Transcending Obscurity Records
Release Date: 05 November 2021
Format Reviewed: High-quality digital recording
With two excellent full-length, battering assaults of gory, horror-inspired Death Metal, Heads for the Dead have taken a fitting detour on their latest EP to pay homage directly to some classic horror movies, namely Maniac, Halloween, and The Thing.
Some years ago I remember talking to my dad about some Death Metal band and my dad presuming Death Metal to mean songs from the perspective of serial killers. Well if ever there were an example to fit that idea it’s here.
In those formative years where I, like any well-adjusted young man, became obsessed with getting hold of all the most gruesome horror movies I could find Maniac somehow slipped my attention. So I can’t comment on how the opening track here relates to the movie’s music. What I can say is that the track is like rolling down a cliff face on fire. Death n Roll drums and overdriven guitars Combine with in-your-face growled vocals punctuated with banshee screams. The tempo slowly into a pounding breakdown midway through and with great little drum fills peppered through the track, it’s not just being smashed in the face with a hammer, but also leaving an impressively intricate arrangement of dents all over your skull.
Well I have seen Halloween and on this track the theme tune motif is instantly recognizable, accompanied by an insidious guitar and drum backing before the track launches into a full-blown expulsion of viscera and suddenly we’re on fire again and rolling further down the mountain. Before the wolf swallows me, my final thought: why grandma what gigantic, overdriven guitars do you have.
As on the previous track, a creepy intro leads into pounding riffing on The Thing. This time there’s some eerie synth textures adding ghoulish atmospherics and the banshee screams are back alongside a little guitar soloing. Dig those synths. They bring to mind FNM a little bit, but with more rubble falling directly on your head.
Two covers finish off the EP (Misfits and Ramones tracks respectively), both of which are violent fun (especially Pet Sematary combining the heavy delivery with such a fun bouncy song and the ringing bells are so jolly. Quite a contrast with the roaring guitars and raging howls) and showcase the punk influences running through this release.
All in all Slash n Roll is a great addition to the Heads for the Dead catalogue. A rollicking journey through being doused in petrol and having your entrails ripped out to a banging Punk/Death Metal groove. 8/10 Tom Boatman
8/10 To greatness and glory!
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