EP REVIEW: Dead Demons – ‘Trial By Fire’


I love noisy heavy on the gorgeous sound of guitars rock of all kinds, But where did this start for me? Simple, it started with metal and heavy rock. In my youth Metal. heavy or hard rock was in transition – on the one hand you had the classic heavy bands – Zeppelin, Deep Purple, AC/DC, Sabbath, you know what I mean – and on the other you had the heavy but fast New Wave of British Heavy Metal – Saxon, Tygers of Pan Tang, Diamond Head, Iron Maiden – who fused that short sharp blast of punk with metal.

The reason I mention this is that Dead Demons do heavy hard rock which kinda fuses both your classic heavy rock and NWOBHM sounds.

Off the bat with ‘Devil May Care’ we for sure have some heavy loudness but there’s a riff that grooves. There’s the hint of heavy blues in that sharp guitar riff. But wait for there’s more – not happy with just doing that the band add in some rather wonderful melodic sections just to mix it up. Great riffs, guitar to drool over, vocals in that classic metal style. A groove that takes me right back to the Clarendon Hotel, Hammersmith at a Friday rock night. Fuck is this good.

‘Time Is Your Enemy’ does that classic rock intro thing – start with a siren, bring in a grinding riff. This one has that early Diamond Head feel. It’s fast, has a rift that you could break a neck to. And yet there’s that spice, a slower section (with the sounds of war, no less). And this is the key to Metal, you need to add in the spice – a slower section, a faster section.

‘Outlaw’ is your classic metal bikers song. And an excuse for off the hook guitar. As if they need one.

So, every Metal band release needs a track or two that gives the band some space to stretch it out; ‘Trial By Fire’ is the first of those. Look, you still get riffs to die for but you also get melodic sections, vocals that go beyond the Metal scream,

And so, sadly, we come to the closing track ‘Another Space In Time’. I say sadly because I really like the EP and the band. This burns people, your slow melodic start, fade to heavy riff and a solo of a kind I haven’t heard in years. Riffs galore, a frankly heart stopping descending hook. This has it all.

Look, in a way I’m sorry that my frame of reference for this EP is the past, and in particular my past. But on the other hand, from the opening notes of the EP opener I was taken back to my late teens; because it sounds like I remember Metal or Hard or Heavy rock (you pays yer money, you takes yer choice) back then sounded like. Except it doesn’t. Just for shits and giggles I pulled out of my mountain of vinyl a few examples of classic NWOBHM, and nearly without exception it sounded a bit wimpy – nowhere near as heavy as I remembered it. So in a way it isn’t old music, it’s influenced by old music but filtered through the music since. Or it’s how it SHOULD have sounded but didn’t.

Nor do I want to label it as classic rock – although if you’re into that, feel free to get into this EP – because that kinda washes out the freshness and vibrantency of it.

Rather I want you to think of this as a fine fine EP of songs that fucking rock, cover some topics that might surprise you and are full of some bloody marvellous playing. Music that is for all fans of loud, hard and heavy music. Dead Demons are alive and making music that fucking kicks like hell.

Buy the EP: https://dead-demons.sumupstore.com

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Frank is the website guy for Local Sound Focus. Takes a lot of photos and loves writing about new music.