UK Release July 25th 2011 on Casket Records
From the moment of formation in 2007 there was a sense of something extra about Plymouth/Truro metalers Huron. It did not take too long for Rising Records to grab them and the release of their debut album Cheyne Stoking saw them bathed in glowing reviews from the likes of Kerrang, Rock Sound, and the man himself, Bruce Dickinson. Subsequent tours and shows with the likes of Valient Thorr and Viking Skull, festival appearances, and playing Hammerfest II on the same bill as Devil Driver, Suicidal Tendencies, Orange Goblin and Iced Earth in 2010, has only escalated the appetite for and the reputation of the quartet. With their second album Mary Celeste about to burst into view on Casket Records that hunger should soon turn into a ravenous demand as the proof that their intense, bludgeoning, and jaw dropping sound has risen to even greater heights becomes apparent.
Having taken over 18 months to complete from start to finish, Mary Celeste is a monster of a beast rippling with ten full eager and dark powered tracks. It is also proof that not only UK metal is at a high but the genre itself in safe hands, with riffs that destine the direction of your limbs and aggression that dulls the senses this is what metal of any flavour is all about. From the moment ‘Branded’ let’s rip the knowledge that this album is something special is instant and by the last dying notes of closer ‘Eternal Sea pt 2’ the listener a well used and satisfied wreck. The opener is a growling slab of a track snarling out upon intense devastating drums and gut twisting riffs. With a blend of Devildriver and Down soaked in a little Slipknot the band take those elements perverting them into their own dark mixture. A stunning start and track which is immediately blown away by the next and title track ‘Mary Celeste’. Running on a hard sweet groove the song is a menacing and brilliant example of why this band is pushing a bright future for metal. Sean Palmer bristles and growls the track out perfectly ably back up by the other hands on deck in the band. The guitar of Neil Sims is impressive throughout the release but especially on this he teases and taunts with tight melodies without ever losing the energy and attitude.
Downhill after such a classic tune one would think but far from it, it may be the best track on the album but right away ‘Disperse Or We Fire’ proves there is more of the same on the way. With machine gun like drumming from Rory Conroy and the menacing slaps from bassist Phill Griffin, the track attacks hard and effectively. The drums have a slight hollow sound on the album but where it might not work on others release it has the effect of exploding like shotgun shells and with the intense incessant delivery from Conroy is mightily effective. Each track on Mary Celeste is prime metal brutality but particular mention must be made of the Bloodsimple toned onslaught of ‘Serpentswine’, the pissed off venom spitting ‘Suffer’, and again closing masterpiece ‘Eternal Sea pt 2’, a track that leaves everything great about Huron in the ear.
Mary Celeste is a giant of an album, the feeling of lost, tortured and tormented lives running through it is thought prodding, the delivery harsh and insatiable, and the music a scuzzed up melody wrapped belt around the face and it never felt better. This is why metal exists; this is why Huron will lead the pack.
Review by Pete Ringmaster