Fireworks

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Hell To Pay - 'Judgement Day' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/12/21/59/Hell-To-Pay-28-1389227719.jpg Hot

Added by James Gaden     January 09, 2014    
 
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Hell To Pay show real promise.

Manchester’s Hell To Pay have certainly worked hard at honing their craft over the last few years, playing hundreds of shows in the North of England and going out as a covers band to keep their chops in shape. Formed at University in 2005 by guitarist Dario Nikzad and guitarist/singer Dan Martin, and completed more recently by drummer Tom Henstock and bassist Stu Robertson, it’s those all-important guitar chops that form the basis of Hell To Pay’s music, and along with Dan’s powerful voice it’s their guitar prowess that will doubtless get them noticed.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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Self-produced to a reasonable standard, ‘Judgement Day’ is chock full of memorable riffs and solos, with tandem guitar parts and technical arrangements all over every song. ‘Run’ and ‘Mistreated’ have a Racer X influence all over them and are quite metallic, but the arrangements and song structures have a more classic rock approach, which works well with some modern touches to make the songs more accessible and contemporary. There’s more of an old-school groove to the likes of ‘Devil In Me’ and ‘Goin’ Down’, both have good hooks and are closer to hard rock than metal, whilst the mellower verse and catchy melody of ‘The End’ make it a song that could cross over into several genres and makes good use of Dan Martin’s impressive range. Talking of Martin’s range, look no further than their impressive cover of Deep Purple’s ‘Stormbringer’ for proof.

If I have any reservations about this band it’s that tracks like the opening ‘Prisoners Of War’ and ‘Let It Go’ sometimes have too much going on, with too many different riffs diluting the power of the main song, and also Tom Henstock’s drums have quite a dry sound and are too low in the mix, and lack the real drive that a band like this should have. Nevertheless, Hell To Pay show real promise, and with a work ethic that puts many established band to shame, you’ll soon be hearing a lot more from them.

Phil Ashcroft

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