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Hercules Morse – ‘Vita Boundary’ Album Review


1. Everything Is Great

2. War Within

3. Cuckoo

4. Talk Me Down

5. Clockwork

6. Resigned

7. Can’t See The Sunrise

8. Still Singing

9 The Story Goes

10. Go For Broke

Hercules Morse hail from Southampton, which for me is a place that makes me think of the likes of Howard Jones and Craig David. But clearly there has to be a rich vein of Rock in the town too, particularly where Hercules Morse are concerned.

Their sound evokes so many indispensable elements from Rocks glorious history. The riffage is cranked up to 11 and the groove is hot and heavy. On top of that are the superlatively styled harmonies which would befit the Beatles, the Foo Fighters, Biffy Clyro and everyone in between.

The band formed in 2014 and their support slots, including Dinosaur Pile Up and Blaze Bayley have garnered them some strong and very well deserved acclaim. Kerrang and Six Music are clearly big fans following their two EP releases to date; ‘Edge Of Life’ and the enigmatically titled ‘Equine Size Comparison’.

Well Star Wars Day, May 4th, sees the release of the first Hercules Morse album ‘Vita Boundary’ and having now listened to it three times I can tell you that the force is bloody strong with this lot. The recording was the result of a very successful crowdfunding campaign. The LP kicks off with the dynamic powerhouse pile driver “Everything Is Great” which sets the scene for some exquisite examples of what great Rock music is meant to be. The production is crisp and crystal clear and this is particularly showcased on the steamroller slab of funk named “Clockwork”, vocally Steve George has a bit of Anthony Kiedis about him, particularly on this song.

The engine room of the band might well be the wonderfully named Guillaume “Gizmo” Redonnet-Brown on some of the meatiest and tightest Rock drumming I have heard in a while along with his rhythm section partner Paul Shott on thundering bass. Then there is the mightily melodic, screaming, hard and heavy guitar of Harry Gardner.

What is my favourite track after listening to this spectacular record three times from end to end? Well frankly I can’t choose just one. Right now, in no particular order, it is “Still Singing” for a chorus that stays with you and superbly layered Thin Lizzy-esque guitars. “Cuckoo” for harmonies that the Beach Boys would be proud of, the fluidity of Gardner’s guitar attack and lyrics that talk about mental illness. Then there is a second single “War Within” another song about a troubled mind, some of the best drumming on the album and a guitar onslaught that takes me back to the zenith of Heavy Rock in the 70s.

If this album fails to move you emotionally, mentally and physically then maybe you need to question whether your vital signs have flat lined. Truly Modern Rock at its finest.

Review - Bill Adamson

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