Released by: Steamhammer/SPV
Release Date: May 22nd, 2012
Genre: Heavy Metal
Jason “Dewey” Bragg (PISSING RAZORS) – Vocals
Mark Zavon (RATT, W.A.S.P., 40 CYCLE HUM) – Guitar
Rex Brown (DOWN, PANTERA) – Bass
Vinny Appice (HEAVEN & HELL, BLACK SABBATH, DIO) – Drums
1. War machine
3. Voodoo doll
4. Gates of hell
5. Rise From The Shadows
6. We`re All gonna die
8. Time & time Again
9. Old Man
10. Mysterious Ways
11. Up In Flames
There are very few true super groups that make that big of an impact. On paper when one hears about a conglomeration of big named artists joining forces to create the band of all bands, it sounds like the perfect idea. However, most of the time, they never live up to expectations and vanish into the haze. Kill Devil Hill may be able to change that idea, though I’m sure some will question my veracity in referring to this band as a super group. But let’s face facts: when you combine a drummer who has played with Black Sabbath and Ronnie James Dio plus a bassist that has played in Pantera and Down, that’s pretty damn super to me. Adding anyone else into the mix is just an added bonus, and with guitarist Mark Zavon and singer Dewey Bragg rounding out the line-up you have a very interesting sound.
There were two artists that jumped out at me as I listened to their SPV/Steamhammer debut Kill Devil Hill. The first is the most obvious, Alice In Chains. Clearly Bragg is influenced by the late Layne Staley, however the music even has that slow groove that brought AIC into prominence back in the day. The other artist that I was reminded of was Dio during his Strange Highways/Angry Machines period, which was more or less his grunge period, if he were to have one. Though I’m not a raging fan of AIC (or that era of Dio) I don’t hate them. Out of all the bands from that time period, Chains is one of the few I can appreciate. Obviously with the talent possessed by the backbone of the band in Vinnie Appice and Rex Brown, you can pretty well figure that rhythmically this is a solid album, and that it is. The guitar work of virtual unknown Zavon is at once haunting and doomy and next fiery. He’s definitely a hidden talent that is ready to be unleashed onto the world. And as incredible as the band is musically, its Bragg’s vocals that hold it all together. The mix of Staley and Dio gives his voice a certain uniqueness and familiarity all at once. Musically it’s pretty much what one would expect from the combination of Sabbath meets Down- dirty, dark, and plodding yet grooving and complex.
This is a very impressive debut from Kill Devil Hill, and will likely set the metal world on its ear, finally proving that at least in this case the melding of legends actually works creating a sound much needed. This album will not disappoint fans of either Appice or Brown, and if it does, then perhaps you should re-evaluate your previous love of either’s work. Songs like “We’re All Gonna Die,” “Gates of Hell,” “Mysterious Ways,” and “Old Man” are the standouts for me, yet I really enjoyed the whole album. Don’t waste any time: when it hits the street May 28, get it!
Written by Chris
Ratings Chris 8/10