Shaman's Harvest - 'Smokin' Hearts & Broken Guns'

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Shaman's Harvest - 'Smokin' Hearts & Broken Guns'


Sometimes bands come along and you think "hey, that's good, why haven't I heard these guys before?" That's exactly what happened to me with Shaman's Harvest, only it turns out I had heard them before.

The band released 'Shine' independently, an album which spawned a hit single in the form of 'Dragonfly', which was a smash hit in the U.S., racking up sales of 150,000 and the video getting a couple of million hits on YouTube. They also contributed theme tunes for WWE stars Drew McIntyre and Wade Barrett, and as a big wrestling fan, that's where I had unwittingly heard them. I've been introduced to a lot of good music from watching WWE, so I was only too happy to check out the band's latest release now they are signed to Mascot.

'Smokin' Hearts & Broken Guns' is a triumph on many levels. The powerhouse opener 'Dangerous' is an immediate attention grabber, Hard and Heavy Rock with great vocals and a big chorus. With Nathan Hunt's versatile and powerful voice over the assault of guitars and the pounding rhythm section, the album spans the aggression of Metal, the droning power of Heavy Rock and the pace of Hard Rock – 'Ten Million Voices' showcases a great take on Modern Rock and 'In Chains' has a Blues tinge to it.

During the recording, vocalist Hunt was diagnosed with throat cancer. Showing an incredible attitude and positive thinking, he literally attended treatment before heading into the studio daily. He threw himself into the recording and delivered some amazing work. 'Blood In The Water', with its an eerie intro, is a song that builds and builds and is the best example of Hunt's superb voice and range, making the song a high point on an already strong record.

There's a terrific cover of Michael Jackson's classic 'Dirty Diana' which works surprisingly well as a Hard Rock song, while you can't help but smile at the energetic, Skynryd-esque 'Country As Fuck'. The band also proves themselves to be adept at ballads with the exquisite 'In The End'. The album rounds off with a brand new take on the song that started it all for them, 'Dragonfly'.

With considerable success in the U.S. already, Shaman's Harvest are looking to break into Europe, and with an album as strong as this, the future for them looks very bright indeed. Excellent.

James Gaden

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