From the opening riff of “Time Warrior,” the first track on “Second Assault,” Horisont seems to blast straight out of the 1970s. Seriously, I imagine these guys driving kick-ass Trans-Ams, downing cans of cheap beer, and generally causing good-natured mayhem.
The band, made up of the first-name-only Axel (Vocals), Charles and Kristofer (Guitars), Magnus (Bass) and Pontus (Drums), doesn’t merely pay homage to that era of rock that produced Black Sabbath and Deep Purple; these guys are actually creating yesterday’s music today. There’s no sense of irony or pretense here. On “Road to Cairo,’ when Axel sings, in his falsetto, “In the Darkness, he’s calling out for your name/Though the darkness he’s reaching up for you,” it could have easily come off as cliché or as a parody of the bands of the 70s. But it’s neither; rather, it’s genuine, balls-to-the-walls hard rock.
Horisont runs the gamut of the musical spectrum, from the bluesy “Spirit” to the eastern-influenced, post-psychedelic “Road to Cairo”; from the wall of percussion on “Thunderflight,” to the softer, more minimalist “Crusaders of Death.” On their Facebook Page, they refer to themselves as “New Wave Of Swedish Old Mans [sic.] Rock,” copping to the fact that they are a band out of a different time. Instead of trying to pass themselves off as something entirely new and original, they revel in their influences. The title track sounds like it could have come off Black Sabbath‘s “Paranoid,” and on the track “On the Run,” there are shades of Rainbow. The album basically rocks.
“Second Assault” is the perfect soundtrack to those late nights when you’re about three beers in and you don’t have to be to work in the morning. You can just crank this album, put on your fringe jacket, howl at the moon, and not worry about the problems of the modern world.