Mason Hill – Against The Wall
Release Date: 05/03/2021
Running Time: 46:47
Review by Beth Jones
Ummm so…AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!! THE MASON HILL DEBUT ALBUM IS FINALLY HERE!!!
Apologies. I just had to get that out of my system! It’s been, what seems like millennia, that I’ve been waiting for this day, since we first happened upon these 5 lovely chaps from Glasgow, at RockWich 2017. I was mesmerized by them on that occasion, and my first words to Rick at the time were, “They are going to be huge.” Their hard rock sound, and their absolute passion, and sheer joy in performing, really connected to me, and all the gathered crowd in that room. It was a special gig. I checked out my original review, and this is what I wrote:
“When I say they really impressed me, what I really mean is they totally blew my mind with how awesomely good they were. They were very fresh melodic rock, which was so good, so tight, so together, and so electric that I have to admit it actually made me emotional. That has only happened to me twice before in 25 years where music is concerned. The first occasion was on listening to Queen’s “Made In Heaven” album for the first time, and the other was watching Doro Pesch on the main stage at Bloodstock (mainly because I worship the ground she walks on though!)”
Since then, the hottest question on everyone’s lips has been “When’s the album coming?!” So, as you can imagine it gives me an absolute thrill to finally be writing this review! But was it worth the wait? (Let’s face it, if you looked at my score at the top of this review, then you probably already know my answer to that.) Well, let’s find out!
The album opens with ‘Reborn’, and the first thing that hits you is the superb production. Right from the first note, everything is placed perfectly, from the distant guitar, full of reverb, to the thumping bass notes and ambient sounds. This leads seamlessly into the absolute banger, ‘No Regrets’. With a powerful riff, and melodic structure, this is the first of many earworms on this album. Scott Taylor’s vocals are clear, but raw enough to deliver a rock punch. The instrumentals of Marc Montgomery, Matt Ward, and James Bird are technically superb. And the metronomic rhythms of Craig McFetridge on the skins hold everything together in perfect time.
The title track is up next, and anyone who doesn’t get this track stuck in their head almost instantly is either insane, or dead! It’s THAT good! It grows and swells, with the pacey and bassy chorus being the high point in the song. I LOVE THIS TRACK!!
Now, you might think that this album had peaked too soon, with ‘Against The Wall’ as the 3rd track. But you’d be so wrong! The album continues like this, for literally EVERY. SINGLE. SONG!!! This should not be a debut album, because it’s simply too damn good! They’ve set the bar high, then thrown caution to the wind and pushed it a little higher! Here’s a few more of my highlights (I mean, I could quite easily just give you the tracklist, and say “There you go!” but that would be silly):
‘DNA’ for its punchy riffs that make you get up and move, and its ridiculously catchy chorus (again – I seriously challenge you not to be singing along by the second chorus! Be warned, it is completely impossible). ‘Who We Are’ – it’s a great hard rock ballad, and, if you don’t love one of them, then you have no soul. ‘Hold On’ for its machine-like riffs! And ‘Where I Belong’, because it’s simply a beautiful and heartfelt track, that display’s the versatility and musical understanding that every member of Mason Hill possess.
Without wanting to sound like a complete fangirl here, if there is such a place as heaven, then this is the soundtrack that would be playing there. I Cannot stress enough how much of a superb album this is, and if you even remotely like Rock, you need to be spinning it at your earliest convenience. The young boys from bonny Scotland have done a bonny wee job on this record, and I could not be happier for them. It deserves a very high spot in everyone’s playlist, and long may they continue making these beautiful noises. And, if they carry on like this, they are still my top tip for being huge. The only thing I can say is, guys, please, PLEASE don’t leave it so long until the next album! I don’t think I could cope!!
‘D.N.A. (Official Video)
02. No Regrets
03. Against The Wall
04. Broken Son
06. Who We Are
07. Find My Way
08. Hold On
09. Out Of Reach
10. We Pray
11. Where I Belong
12. Reborn (Reprise)
Scott Taylor – Vocals
James Bird – Lead Guitar
Marc Montgomery – Rhythm Guitar
Matthew Ward – Bass
Craig McFetridge – Drums
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.