H.E.A.T. Into The Great Unknown cd review
H.E.A.T. return with Into The Great Unknown released on the 22nd of September via Ear Music and more than 3 years since their last cd Tearing Down The Walls.
No gigs played for a couple of years and only the stop gap Live In London cd to keep us warm and news the band had camped out in Thailand with producer Tobias Lindell recording the new cd before the news struck that guitarist Eric Rivers had left too.His replacement is Sky Davids who is actually original band member Dave Dalone and so 3 years and a rapidly changing musical landscape later maybe Into The Great Unknown is an apt title for the band.
10 tracks 45 minutes and as first track Bastard Of Society starts with a huge guitar riff and then drummer Crash er crashes in nothing has changed.An enormous groove with Erik Gronwall on vocals at his sneering best on the chorus with plenty of woah woahs thrown in before the verse too.H.E.A.T. are back.
Second track Redefined and hold on to your hats whats this?A drum rhythm from Crash and Jona Tee's keyboards on a track Queen could have put on The Works album.1 minute 35 seconds and a stop start guitar riff kicks in with the drum rhythm and keys now having a modern dance feel to it.Jimmy Jay's bass bobs along nicely too.It's 2 and a half minutes before the chorus kicks in and Erik's vocal is superb and more woah woah's too before a short sharp Dalone guitar solo fits the mood perfectly.If the band had released this song first social media would have gone even madder than they did when Time On Our Side was put out.But having had the pleasure of listening to the cd for 2 and a half weeks now it is melodic rock for the 21st century.
Shit City is another balls out rocker all big riff and huge huge chorus and will go down a storm live.
Time On Our Side was the first song heard and is modern H.E.A.T. keys riff to the fore and pounding bass drum and a distorted Jimmy Jay bass line all over it.The chorus is immense with Erik's holding notes.Hints of god shall I say it disco in this one and you can imagine night clubs playing this with the crowd going mad over Crash's pounding rhythm.Again it's melodic rock but not as we know it.
Best Of The Broken is old and new H.E.A.T. all wrapped into one.Crash's bass drum army marching beat with oooo oooo's backing vocals and a keys track under pinning it all and you can imagine it in the live setting with the crowd clapping along before exploding on another chorus written by the gods.Guitar's and drums and vocals come together as one with a yob backing vocal and it's one to be bellowed back by huge crowds.
Eye Of The Storm is a slow paced number that starts on a melodic Erik vocal line and he really goes for it in the chorus with held notes and showcases his full range to superb effect.
Mid song Jon Tee's keys lead the way and Lindell's great production shows off every band member to their full potential.
Blind Leads The Blind is a heads down rocker with a big guitar riff and a stop start verse that leads into another huge chorus and a sure fire winner live.Dalone really hits a wah wah infused guitar solo showing how much he has been missed.A song that easily could have been on the last cd but here gives a great mix of old and new H.E.A.T.
We Rule is a keyboard led number that has Queen written all over it from the chorus and it builds to a band crescendo with keys and guitar in perfect unison and Erik again showing his class with an excellent vocal line.
Do You Want It has probably the most annoying keyboard line since The Final Countdown but its also annoyingly tuneful too and fits the song which is a mid paced rocker but with enough modern H.E.A.T. to keep you on your toes.With Jimmy's bass all over it and Jona's keys at the front of the mix.Pre chorus and Erik's vocal matches the keyboard line and will have you whistling along to it.Big big chorus which again you can imagine Erik imploring the crowd Do You Want It.
The title track ends the album in style with a near 7 and half minute epic which starts on a huge lumbering guitar riff and drum rhythm and builds to a classic H.E.A.T. chorus with Erik giving it his all.Mid song we have a keys led part before Dalone gets a chance to shine with a longer than usual guitar solo which I am sure will be extended live as the rest of the band work out underneath.
H.E.A.T. could have churned out Tearing Down The Walls Part 2 and we would have said welcome back.They have produced an album that makes you think makes you listen and with repeated listens gets better every time you play it as you pick up on a new vocal line or instrument part that makes you sit up and take notice.
But most importantly it's H.E.A.T. welcome back guys you have been missed.