The buzz has been building and word of mouth rife about a new force in UK metal; a band that is turning heads and receiving increasing focus upon them, amidst claims thrown that they are destined to be the next big thing. Of course, being signed by Roadrunner Records mid 2010 did not exactly hold back the intensity and pressure placed upon them. Now, with the release of their debut album,“Revenge For The Ruthless”, we get to find out if there is any substance to the hype surrounding Welsh band Revoker. The quartet, having been friends at school and a musical unit since 2006, show a tightness that many bands struggle ever to achieve and each member is exceptional in their own right and fit seamlessly in the beast that is Revoker.
Ok, so we’re not going to waste time building up to it, “Revenge For The Ruthless” is a stunning triumph, simply irresistible from the first explosive riff. Yeah, they have a more than obvious Metallica thing going on, something I am sure many will throw at them negatively but do not let that put you off, it merely adds a heavy spice, nothing more. This album is bursting with gut busting riffs, attention grabbing hooks, combined with great musical tornadoes of creativity, ideas, and melodies and it is maybe one of the best debut releases in the past couple of decades…
New single and opening track on the release instantly shows the bands inspirations and musical intentions. ‘Time To Die’ flies at the listener with no apologies for bringing classic metal and rock riffs and sounds as an ingredient in their own unique recipe of striking and surging metal. Opening chords come straight out of the Metallica songbook but it sounds so good fused with their own crusading aggression and attack that you will hear no complaints from this direction. Other tracks pay a kind of homage to them and other classic bands in feel too but it is merely a picture on their wall of sound and incidental within their maelstrom of fresh pulse racing power and energy.
‘Stay Down’ follows the opener with a heavier feel resembling Five Finger Death Punch meets Drowning Pool and then gets taught by a new young attitude how it should really sound. Jamie Mathias has a voice that has the perfect mix for metal blending the dirty growls and scowls with smooth melodic croons, never going too far either way and able to switch instantly if needed. The anthemic choruses as on the brilliant ‘Psycoville’ grab hold with, at times, a fine punk feel and I dare anyone not to join in with simple but effective gang chants.
‘The Great Pretender’ with a lyrical sensitivity (Hed)P.E. would be proud of, along with the explosively driven rampage of ‘Hate Inside’ and ‘Don’t Want It’, with its one finger punk attitude, are a trio of varied and satisfying tracks that make this album a must listen, if not a destined to have.
Apart from the songs, it would be amiss to not mention the individual parts that combine to create them. The drums of Jack Pritchard are colossal and give a framework that allows everything to flow easily and with confidence. The guitars of Mathias and Chris Green jump and dance within every track, never missing the opportunity to throw in classic rock and metal riffs twisted into their own design, whilst bassist Shane Phillips lurks, pounces and drives home basslines that brings the dark heavy meat to the bones of the songs.
Benji Webb from Welsh legends Skindred helms the production on the album, being determined to work with the band after hearing them down the corridor when they recorded their EP at Nott-In-Pill Studios. You can feel his influence throughout with the dark feel of the tracks being tempered with great melodic hooks and small guitar solo moments, something Skindred are masters of.
“Revenge For The Ruthless” is masterful and though I did look for something to gripe about, I failed; this is without doubt going to be on the top of many ‘Album of the Year’ lists come December for sure.
“Revenge For The Ruthless” is released on Roadrunner Records on May 2nd and for more information check out the band’s official website.