Gypsyhawk - "Revelry & Resilience" (CD)
"Revelry & Resilience" track listing:
2. The Fields
5. Galaxy Rise
7. Night Songs From The Desert
8. The Red Wedding
9. Silver Queen
10. State Lines
11. Rock And Roll Hoochie Koo
Reviewed by EdgeoftheWorld on August 15, 2012
After a splendid '70s-style debut disc, "Patience & Perseverence," Gypsyhawk has returned with "Revelry & Resilience," an album that tightens things up a little bit, but still has the same sense of fun that powered the first one. Obviously, fans of bands like UFO and Thin Lizzy — or, for that matter, Wolfmother — are going to find a whole lot to love here.
The band is definitely finding more of its own voice here. Where "Patience & Perseverence" sported an occasionally over-obvious Thin Lizzy influence, "Revelry & Resilience" is a bit less on-the-nose. Sure "Hedgeking," has a dual-guitar assault that's reminiscent of Lizzy, but there's also an almost thrashy vibe that feels like it wouldn't have been too out of place on an album by singer/bassist Eric Harris' other band, Skeletonwitch. Ditto for "State Lines," which definitely brings the speed.
The twin-ax attack of Erik Kuibler and Andrew Packer is quite potent on "Galaxy Rise," with some lead guitar work that feels a bit reminiscent of Ace Frehley. Riff-wise, the duo — with Harris rumbling underneath — are especially good on the opener, "Overloaded" and "Hedgeking." "Night Songs From The Desert" slows things down a bit, with a beautiful intro featuring a high electric guitar soloing mournfully over the album's quietest instrumentation. It's a bit of a shame that the band only saw fit to include one slower track. Then again, the energy level is one of the charms here.
As I noted in my review of the band's previous album, Harris isn't the world's most dynamic vocalist, but he gets the job done here. When he's called on to stretch out a bit — on "Silver Queen," especially — he pulls it off, but he's largely content to explore a range that lets him sound like a growlier Phil Lynott.
When Gypsyhawk sticks to their own tunes, things are golden, but the album's sole cover is easily its worst track. Then again, Johnny Winter's "Rock And Roll Hoochie Koo" is just plain terrible no matter who sings it. I guess it's a good thing it's at the end, and thus much more easily ignored.
An album that's easily equal to the band's excellent debut, Gypsyhawk's "Revelry & Resilience" finds the band discovering more of its own voice, while still honoring the sounds of the 1970s. If you're a fan of early metal, you're going to crank this one up with pride.
Highs: "State Lines," "Night Songs From The Desert" and "Hedgeking."
Lows: The horrible cover "Rock And Roll Hoochie Koo."
Bottom line: A superb slice of '70s-style metal that finds Gypsyhawk discovering more of its own voice.
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