By Stefan Nilsson, Roppongi Rocks
Hellhound consists of dedicated Japanese metalheads on a mission.
As I listen to “Warrior of Rising Sun”, Japanese heavy metal band Hellhound’s new album, I have a big smile on my face. The album is a mix of new songs and re-recordings by the current line-up of the band of some of the band’s old songs. The band has been around for almost two decades. They debuted with the “Welcome to Metal Zone” EP in 2004 and followed that with the first full-length studio album “Tokyo Flying V Massacre” in 2006. Hellhound is proper heavy metal, true metal, grassroots metal. It is the kind of metal music lovers around the world play in their basements and at local rock clubs and live houses. Music that gives you no choice but to play air guitar and headbang. The ingredients in the Hellhound metal soup include some NWOBHM, scoops of Manowar, a few pinches of thrash and speed metal and a true dedication to the heavy metal genre across everything this band does. It is retro without trying to be retro. It is just real metal played by a bunch of Japanese men with patch-covered battle vests and studded leather armbands. The song titles are classic: “Samurai Warrior”, “Let Metal Rule the World”, “Metal Psycho”, “Heavy Metal Hammer Down”, “Heavy Metal Patrol”, “Heavy Metal Till I Die”, “Metal Warrior” and so on. Their previous album from 2018 was called “The Oath of Allegiance to the Kings of Heavy Metal”. You get the picture. The band members’ stage names are also in line with the overall mission: Crossfire on vocals and guitar, Lucifer’s Heritage on guitar, Blackwind on bass and Mountain King on drums. I love it. This is excellent stuff for heavy metal lovers. It is a Japanese heavy metal crusade. It reminds me of some of those Russian metal bands that emerged in the mid-1980s. Like those Russians, Hellhound is a bunch of dedicated guys that love metal and want to spread the metal gospel. Power to them.
Hellhound’s album “Warrior of Rising Sun” will be released on 22nd September via Spiritual Beast.