Debut albums of this ilk don’t come too much better
Raziq Rauf 2009
Nobody cares about Blackhole yet. They’re just another classic rock-influenced hardcore band that’s too busy supporting other bands. They’re the band that you see the last couple of songs of when you walk through the door. They’re the band with that chap from Gallows’ brother in. Dead Hearts could change that.
Fingers can be pointed: the melodies these five teenagers create are heavily inspired by Southern rock hardcore bands like Maylene and the Sons of Disaster and Every Time I Die. But it’s the ferocious delivery of Richard Carter’s searing vocal lines that really prick the ears.
Without even the slightest hint of respite from the young singer’s throat, which comes across as both coarse and sharp at once, every rasping refrain in opener Don’t Cry cuts straight through. You’ll never miss a single one of his messages because they’re all delivered about as subtly as a brick crashing through your bedroom window.
In stark contrast, the lumbering guitar lines saunter through at anything but breakneck speed. Carefully considered riffs like those of lead single Scared to Change etch themselves lovingly into your mind. You’ll find yourself swaying away in time to the contagious rhythms without a second thought. There’s no menace; nobody’s making you enjoy these riffs, but you will.
Standing out amongst the eleven tracks is Forever: yet another low-slung guitar riff calmly explodes throughout, and Carter expels the contents of his throat with increasing vitriol as the song progresses. The song builds and builds until, yep, it ends in a classic tumult of sludgy feedback.
My Lord begins like The Darkness’ I Believe in a Thing Called Love, but really doesn’t continue in that vein. Album closer We Are the Dead Hearts ends with 90 seconds of acoustic proclamations of the song title, comprising the closest thing you’ll get to peace and quiet across almost 40 minutes.
Debut albums of this ilk don’t come too much better than Dead Hearts. Sit up and take note because as Richard Carter and his merry, dead-hearted men step out into their own light, you’ll see one of the brightest talents in the British hardcore scene. People will care about Blackhole very soon.