Halestorm – Into The Wild Life (Review)
April 10, 2015 (EU)
April 13, 2015 (UK)
April 14, 2015 (NA)
April 15, 2015 (JP)
13 (Standard) - 15 (Deluxe)
50 mins (Standard) - 57 (Deluxe)
Grammy award winners Halestorm are back with their third full length album titled “Into The Wild Life” released on Atlantic Records.
The Philadelphia based band took to Nashville with producer Jay Joyce for the recording of the album, with the recording itself taking place in a converted church.
The album sees the band flexing their artistic muscles creating something that is really quite different in feel to their previous efforts. On the one hand the sound on this album is stripped back, raw and powerful, yet there’s so much texture to the songs, and the production is wonderful. There’s a real mix of styles on offer too, which in others hands could spell trouble but Halestorm blend them to perfection with each track often literally flowing into the next with some nice little segue’s.
“Scream” gets things under way with a rhythmn that at times feels quite tribal. In fact, rhythmically, the album shines. There’s a feast of unconventional drum patterns, bass lines and guitar that simply don’t conform to traditional hard rock allowing the band to create a new soundscape for themselves with Lizzy Hale‘s amazing vocals varying wildly from screaming banshee to angelic beauty.
“I Am The Fire” sees Lizzy practically bursting a blood vessel, such is the power delivered during the chorus. There’s some great bass work on this from Josh Smith too.
“Sick Individual” is another powerhouse of a track with its anthemic chorus and edgy rhythmn. The guitar is refreshingly unorthodox at times forgoing the often clichéd guitar solos for something more unique. Next comes “Amen” which is another track with the word anthem stamped all over it and at just 2:58 long you’d think it short, but theres so much goodness packed into this, its probably the stand out track of the album. Amen gives way to “Dear Daughter“, a wonderful piano based ballad with a great vocal melody with Lizzy showing the more delicate side of her vocals. The song itself was inspired by Hale’s Mother and her encouragement in pursuing her dreams.
“New Modern Love” continues the more laid back feel laid down by “Dear Daughter“, with the pace (and power) raised just a little. The band return to their more aggressive side with the punky “Mayhem” before easing into “Bad Girls World” which to my ears is the most poppy commercial track on the album and reminds me at times of Pink‘s rockier side. I love the end of the track which fades out to just the sound of Joe Hottinger‘s raw guitar. Hottinger’s guitar work on this album is amazing, sometimes understated, but in terms of performance is right up there with Lizzy Hale’s itself.
Next up is “Gonna Get Mine“, and we’re back in anthem mode with another edgy track which makes me think of a supercharged Joan Jett.
We’re treated to a brooding ballad in “The Reckoning” before the band rock out on the excellent “Apocalyptic“, the first track to be released from the album back in January, which has a great riff and groove to it.
Another ballad in the shape of “What Sober Couldn’t Say” comes next and while some might think, not another ballad, this is another great track and not your typical ballad given Lizzy Hale’s lyrics describing breaking free from a violent relationship.
There’s some straight ahead old school rock n’ roll in “I like It Heavy“, probably my least favourite track on the album but still good fun. In honesty this would probably be a disappointing end to the album but thankfully in the deluxe version we have two bonus tracks in the shape of “Jump the Gun” and “Unapologetic“, both great tracks in their own right and not your usual bonus foder. “Jump The Gun” is another ‘fun’ song with an almost country feel to it. “Unapologetic” on the other hand is very commercial, and I could defiantly imagine hearing this on the radio.
Into the Wild Life is an album that I just can’t stop playing over and over again. Every song on here is pure quality. There’s plenty of variety and depth to the songs to hold your attention. If your new to Halestorm its time to pay attention and go get this now!
Tracklisting (Deluxe Version):
01 – Scream
02 – I Am the Fire
03 – Sick Individual
04 – Amen
05 – Dear Daughter
06 – New Modern Love
07 – Mayhem
08 – Bad Girls World
09 – Gonna Get Mine
10 – The Reckoning
11 – Apocalyptic
12 – What Sober Couldn’t Say
13 – I Like It Heavy
14 – Jump the Gun (bonus track)
15 – Unapologetic (bonus track)
Lzzy Hale – vocals
Joe Hottinger – guitars
Josh Smith – bass
Arejay Hale – drums
Get involved! - Lets give Rock Empires a community spirit. Why not leave a comment or leave a rating for a review. Go on, you know you want to.