Listening to “First Race” by Hell Riders immediately brings to mind the leather clad, fist pumping pummel of Judas Priest. I refer specifically to the sounds found on both the legendary “Painkiller” and “British Steel” albums. Yessiree! if you fiend for the type of turbo charged char that Iron Maiden, Saxon and the aforementioned Judas Priest are known for yet have worn out all the LP’S in your collection then you are in luck for the album “First Race” by Hell Riders is the care free soundtrack to all your beer swilling shenanigans.

With song titles such as “Soldier Of Steel” and “Turbolizer” there is no doubt what one is getting oneself into when listening to “First Race”. There is a certain honesty when it comes to performing this type of Traditional Heavy Metal, a lack of pretence if you will, that is heartwarming. The rollicking rhythms and forward moving momentum of songs such as “Ghost Rider” and “Dragon Power” are borderline charming.

Throughout the ten tracks that make up this chest beating release Vocalist Dave Jolly spews forth high pitched verses like the bastard child of Ronnie James Dio and Rob Halford, Guitarist Richard Crowley lays down churning slabs of good time wattage with flare, Bassist Caty Van Alchemy handles the low end with rumbling mastery and Drummer Jimmy Dirt kicks up a storm with his stellar drum battery. The gritty and rough hewn production adds a certain authenticity to the proceedings that cannot be overstated!

Well! Well! Hell Riders have singlehandedly resurrected my taste for Traditional Heavy Metal and that folks is no mean feat. Do yourselves a favor and give these guys a listen for only the most fun and festive sounds await you.

-Asher Locketz-

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