By Gerald Stansbury
I recently reviewed the last Hearts and Hand Grenades EP and knew this one was right around the corner. The band has continued to increase the aggression in their music with this EP being heavier than the ‘Nothing Left’ EP was. Hearts and Hand Grenades are not chasing trends and are focused entirely on their music. This allows them to appeal to fans of multiple rock and metal genres.
Kicking off this EP with hard hitting ‘Turning to Ashes,’ the band immediately kicks the door in with a high energy groove and catchy chorus. As they did in the past, the mix is spot on here with Stephanie Wlosinski’s (also bass) lead vocals placed perfectly to capture a clear, live feel. The guitar solo by Kenny Blesy fits the mood of the song perfectly. As good as that opener is, my early favorite is what comes next in the title track. The rhythm of a heartbeat segues into a killer groove of modern hard rock by Wlosinski and Tom Lafferty (drums) that immediately gets the head banging. The chorus packs in some terrific dynamics that becomes even more addictive with each listen. The combined guitar work of Blesy and Bress (rhythm guitar/ keys) make an excellent team. I can see this becoming one of my most played songs this year.
‘For the Weakened’ comes out of the gates and really reminded me of an Alice in Chains ‘Facelift’ vibe musically. Featuring some semi attitude fueled spoken vocals by Wlosinski in the chorus. This is another great song by the band with the melodic breakdown in the middle leading into the final stretch of the addictive chorus. It’s another one that gets the fist in the air and the head moving. Closer ‘Daggers’ serves another shot of great hard rock. Again, I really like that the band gave this a live feel where the chorus is not over the top or layered with backing vocals that cannot be done live. The slight rasp in the vocals gives the band a unique identifier. This serves as a great finale to the EP especially with how the song ends.
Hearts and Hand Grenades are now three EPs into their career and are putting out some great songs that balance hooks and aggression with the band being an excellent example of what hard rock can be in 2020. If you put the three EPs together, you would have a great debut album. I recommend picking up each EP and getting onboard with Hearts and Hand Grenades now.
- ‘Adrenaline’ is released on Friday (1 May). You can get your copy HERE.
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