Human Remains
Style: Heavy Metal
Release date: 13 May, 2011
Playing time: 66:00

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: Hell!

The accolades proceeds them and they are already the most talked about metal band of 2011, and they will surely be on many lips over the summer of 2011. But what the hell is all the fuzz about? We are after all talking about the reemerged NWOBHM band that prior to this album only has managed to release 4 demo-tapes and a single between 1981 and 1986. They have been an underground cult act ever since, sort of an unsung hero of the scene. And on their debut album they present us with remakes of songs from back then.

Andy Sneap has been the driving force to bring back Hell - he took guitar lessons from now deceased original guitarist Dave Halliday - and has therefore a personal connection to the material. The question is: can you recapture the spirit of the early 80s and still be competitive? Answer: Hell yeah!

"Human Remains" has the spirit of the 80s and it delivers at the highest level possible! The songs have stood the test of time and belong among the best compositions I have heard from that period of time, it is almost unreal how well the songs fit into today's musical landscape. Much credit has to go to Andy Sneap - the production is quite simply brilliant! He has given the songs a powerful, honest and almost organic sound, not unlike the brilliant Accept production he did in 2010, and the result is a very current and classic sounding album.

Hell has surely been more influential that they've ever been credited for, so when you hear passages that remind you of Over Kill, Judas Priest or King Diamond you have to ask yourself: who influenced who? That alone proves just how timeless and unique their sound and material was back in the early 80s! One of the most respected metal journalists Malcolm Dome has made the following statement: "This will be one of the landmark metal albums of the second decade of the 21st century". I have to agree with him on this one, not because this is the perfect album, but simply because it captures the essence of the early 80s like no other album in the past 20 years!

Hell has made a hell of an album (pun intended) and I am sure they will be the talk of 2011 and "Human Remains" will surely be topping many Album of the Year lists, simply because they have been able to transcend the spirit of the early 80s perfectly into this millennium. Would they have received the same kind of hype had they not had the history to back them up? Probably not, and the real question is: Will they be able to follow this one up with an equally strong sophomore album? Only time will tell...

But for now there is only one way for Hell: UP!

01. Overture Themes from Deathsquad (1:14)
02. On Earth as it is in Hell (5:09)
03. Plague and Fyre (5:09)
04. The Oppressors (5:53)
05. Blasphemy and the Master (8:11)
06. Let Battle Commence (4:23)
07. The Devils Deadly Weapon (10:14)
08. The Quest (4:21)
09. Macbeth (7:21)
10. Save Us From Those Who Want to Save Us (5:05)
11. No Martyr's Cage (9:00)
Label: Nuclear Blast
Distribution: Warner Music (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Kenn Jensen
Date: 25 April, 2011
Website: www.myspace.com/helluk