Wednesday 25 January 2017

Hyborian - Hyborian: Vol 1 (Album Review)

Release date: March 17th 2017. Label: The Company. Format: Cassette/DD/Vinyl

Hyborian: Vol 1 – Tracklisting

As Above, So Below
Blood for Blood
Dead Lies Dreaming

Band Members

Martin Bush
Justin Rippeto
Ryan Bates
Anthony Diale


Hyborian: Vol I is the debut album from Progressive Sludge/Stoner Rockers - Hyborian. If you're a fan of Mastodon, Baroness and Crowbar then you'll be mightily impressed by this album. As Hyborian play a fast and furious blend of Sludge/Stoner Metal that leans towards the more progressive side of things. With a touch of psychedelic spaced out sounds spliced into the action. The vocals are more clean based that means you can concentrate on the groovy riffs at the same time.

Opening track - As Above So Below - opens with a mighty flourish. With heavy Sludge/Stoner grooves taking you back to Mastodon's Blood Mountain era with the progressive rhythms. Though with a more spaced out sound. The atmosphere and volume of the whole album is loud from the start as Hyborian play at such a fast pace. Second song - Maelstrom - is one of the albums standout tracks with superb dual vocals and heavy psychedelic guitars creating a loud wall of noise.

People may complain - "Not Another Mastodon/Baroness Clone" and I can see why they may think that of Hyborian. Though appearances can be deceiving as Hyborian inject a more direct psych/spaced out sound with cool ideas of their own. The album only runs for thirty mins and Hyborian don't waste a single second or riff. Every song has been written and played to a tight timescale and the album becomes more exciting as a result.

The Progressive grooves blast straight through to the third track - Blood For Blood. This is perhaps the heaviest the song on the album as Hyborian opts for a gloomier style of Sludge/Stoner Metal. The instrumental work is one of precision matched against bleak lyrical content.

The final three songs on the album - Dead Lies Dreaming, Ajna and Dross - continue with the fast-paced and sometimes manic riffs with Hyborian creating an exciting style of sound. It maybe familiar to some though you can't deny how addictive the whole album sounds and feels. Ajna is perhaps the strongest offering from the final three tracks but as a whole Hyborian impress on all of tracks.

The lyrics are another highlight as Hyborian have written intriguing ideas for the individual songs that allows the album to have a rich creative side. The production is excellent as Hyborian have delivered a fresh, loud and crisp audio experience. Hyborian: Vol I is a superb debut album and hopefully we will see more from Hyborian in the future. An impressive debut album indeed.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Joshua from The Company for the promo. Hyborian: Vol 1 will be available to buy on Cassette/DD/Vinyl via The Company from 17th March 2017.