13 Burning – Unholy EP

13 Burning – Unholy EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 14/08/2020
Running Time: 25:00
Review by Beth Jones
7/10

Well, it’s Wednesday! Or ‘hump day’ as some call it (stop snickering at the back, it means it’s the hump of the week, and once you’re through it, you’re on the way to the weekend)! And what better way is there to make it through a humpy Wednesday, than with a bit of metal? None, my good people! None at all!!

This evenings listening is presented by Oxford based NWOBHM band, 13 Burning, in the shape of their recently released debut EP “Unholy”. Formed in 2014, their mission is to combine the traditional sounds of classic heavy metal, with storytelling of mythology, war, and witchcraft.

The EP opens with the title track and gives us everything you would expect from a classic NWOBHM band. Face melting riffs, slightly edgy vocals with perfect Shakespearean diction, a great steady 4/4 beat, and a booming bass line. It’s like bish bash bosh, meat and two veg, heavy metal. And there is not a single thing wrong with that. It takes me back to the good old days, when hair was flowing, boots were cowboy, and everything was double denim clad. And not a pair of rose-tinted glasses in sight!

We’re treated to some awesome musicianship on this release too – a notable example is the ripping solo in track 2 ‘Wings Of A Dream’, which really brings that song to life.

Track 3, ‘Day Of Reckoning’ begins in theatrical fashion; spoken word with a ton of echo, backed up by some eerie and ethereal sound effects. I think this is actually my favourite track. It’s got a slower pace which helps to show off vocalists Dan Abrams pipes really well, and hints at how they can diversify their sound from the traditional. Saying that, it does kind of remind me of the more drug induced tracks that appeared back when peace and love were a thing…just with more riffage!

The final track, ‘Valhala’, again starts in a more slow, lamenting style, with Dan’s vocals sitting atop the mix. Lyrically, it’s pretty poetic, too. Completely in keeping with their mission. And this track is a close second for my favourite track. It’s a biggy, at over 8 minutes long, but has a sharp change of pace in the middle, taking us back to the comfortable groove of classic metal! By the way, unless you by the CD, you won’t hear this track, because it’s a bonus track only on the physical copy. And the lesson here is BUY MERCH AND BUY PHYSICAL COPIES!!!!! Stream, shmeam!!!! Heathens!!! Anyway, where was I?…

Ah yes! “Unholy”, as a debut EP, is a sound footing for 13 Burning to start out with. It’s not ground-breaking, but as a first tentative step into the world of having the balls to put your tunes onto a shiny circle of coated plastic for all to hear, it’s pretty worthy. There are a couple of itchy teething problems that could probably do with ironing out to take them to the next level. The mix is a little muddy in places, and the balance of instruments isn’t always right. But that almost gives it the authentic NWOBHM feel. So, you have to make a call. If it’s ‘perfection’ in the modern day that you seek, then maybe check go out some Ed Sheeran. But if you want proper no nonsense British Heavy Metal, then you could do a lot worse than looking these guys up. I think 13 Burning have a lot more to give (hence my score) and I very much look forward to hearing where they go next.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Unholy
02. Wings Of A Dream
03. Day Of Reckoning
04. Valhala

LINE-UP:
Dan Abrams – Vocals
Phill Millward – Guitars
Sarah Thompson – Bass
Steve Kearley – Drums

LINKS:

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.

Thrashatouille – Rise Of The Bludgeonaise EP

Rise Of The Bludgeonaise EP Cover

Thrashatouille – Rise Of The Bludgeonaise EP
Self Released
Release Date: September 2018
Running Time: 13:54
Review by Beth Jones
7/10

There are many things in adult life to be uncertain of; your career choice, where you should live, if your kids will turn out ok, how the hell did you use that much electric in one month, what possessed you to think your first relationship was a good idea, you know – the kind of three in the morning insomnia inducing worries that plague us; but there are two things I couldn’t be more certain of – my love of music and my love of food! So, what better way to celebrate these two wonderful things, than with a good serving of Northwich based thrash metal chefs, Thrashatouille!

Formed in 2017, out of a drunken idea, the band features Head Chef Chris Hargreaves (Bass), Pastry Chef Rob Sutton (Lead Vocals), Sous Chef James Von Gerber (Guitar), and Pot Wash Dan Brown (Drums), coming together to make the perfect culinary thrash metal team! Their Debut EP “Rise Of The Bludgeonaise, is today’s focus for our critique! The EP has been delighting their dedicated fans, new and old, since its release, however they haven’t had a formal review of it, until now!

The foody theme is all encompassing, with even the track list written as a ‘Set Menu’. I like this – it shows that they have thought really hard about the whole package and have a good hold on who they are and what they are about. It explores the themes of love, killer food, and the unfortunate aftermath of too much chilli! On the menu we have a starter, a choice of two mains, and a dessert. As I am critiquing today, I shall be, of course, eating both mains mwahahahaha!! (Ok so I have just made a serious decision about my lack of career direction – why the hell did I not become a food critic?!)

The Starter – ‘Thrashatouille’. I rather enjoyed this dish. From the first taste, it packs quite a meaty punch, offering a host of different textures. It is quite gravelly in some places but does give you a sweet and crisp interlude somewhere in the middle. It also doesn’t outstay its welcome – there is nothing worse than an over egged starter, but thankfully this isn’t it. It is an interesting concept, the birth of an evil being. Full of all the thrashing and writhing that I would want from a good metal lite bite!

The Mains – ‘Chilli Con Carnage’. Continuing the meaty theme, this is much chunkier than the starter, and its lyrical description leaves me wondering if my bowel will survive! The accompaniments are good – fast paced and rhythmical, it has an undeniable tang, with dark and rich undertones.

The Mains – ‘Spaghetti Bludgeonaise’. This dish brings the menu to life! It is peppered with sharp top notes and fatty bass notes throughout. Its frantic mid tones and pulsing dark tones send you into a terrifying sensory party, filled with hallucinations of your food attacking you. Mid way through, it does begin to feel a little sluggish, however this may be the aftereffects of the chilli con carnage!

Dessert – ‘Red Velvet Romance’. Now I do like a good slice of Red Velvet, however this one is not as smooth as I am used to, but then it is thrash food, so that can be excused. It is still extremely tasty, and makes you want to move about. If anything, this dessert was a little small for me, and it has certainly left me wanting more!

This meal is certainly a party on the palette, and whilst there is still room for some little tweaks to the recipes, I think this is a very accomplished first menu, showing real talent and an eye for detail. It is very well seasoned and shows a range of skills in keeping with their style. I look forward to the next encounter in the Thrashatouille Bistro and hope to see a fuller range of menu options next time – may I suggest an aperitif, a fish course, and possibly end it all with coffee and a ‘wafer-thin’ mint?!

TRACKLISTING:
01. Thrashatouille
02. Chilli Con Carnage
03. Spaghetti Bludgeonaise
04. Red Velvet Romance

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/Thrashatouille/

https://www.instagram.com/thrashatouilleofficial/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFmKgvG3tfiuN4WYckdpP1Q

 

Thrashatouille Pic

 

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.