|Huron - 'Mary Celeste' (Casket Music)|
|Written by Jim Rowland|
|Monday, 25 July 2011 05:00|
One look at Huron's semi-legible spiky logo would make you think this is another screeching black metal album from a band based somewhere in a dark Norwegian wood. It's a pleasant surprise then that Huron turn out to be a band that sound like they're the bastard sons of Pantera. Like Pantera, they hail from the deep South - well, the deep South West of England that is. Plymouth & Truro to be precise.
'Mary Celeste' is Huron's second album, following on from 2009's debut 'Cheyne Stoking'. The band describe themselves as 'old school thrash with a modern melodic twist' and whilst there are thrashy moments going on here, and a clear hint of Metallica's influence, especially on the fine 'Black Harvest', I wouldn't necessarily bracket this band as old school thrash. The similarities with Pantera are undeniable. Vocalist Sean Palmer has a fine set of pipes on him, and the vitriolic power and passion with which his guttural screaming vocals rip through tracks like 'Branded' and 'Disperse Or We Fire' instantly bring prime Pantera-era Phil Anselmo to mind. Similarly, Neil Sims' heavy crunching guitars echo some of the groove and swagger that Dimebag displayed so well.
This album is a pretty relentless assault on the eardrums, none more so than on the vicious 'Serpentswine', so there's some welcome relief when 'The Eternal Sea Pt.1' sees the band sail into calmer waters, with this rather fine, stark acoustic ballad providing a much needed contrast to the majority of the album's furious assault. 'The Eternal Sea Pt.2', however, ends the album in a furious storm, with this seven minute mini-epic displaying some of the aforementioned thrash influences.
Like a keg of West Country scrumpy, this is potent stuff.