Guns For Hire
Review by Vladimir on July 18, 2023.
It’s been a while since I dealt with something within the heavy metal territory, so I guess it’s time to head back in. The band I will be covering is the UK heavy metal band Tailgunner, which recently released their full-length debut album Guns For Hire on July 14th via Fireflash Records. Without delaying the inevitable, let’s dive in and take a look at what these lads made for the world to hear…
When someone mentions old school heavy metal, what you expect is what you get, and Tailgunner is the deliverer of these goods that throw you directly back in the golden 80’s. They just about do everything by the book by providing catchy heavy metal guitar riffing, powerful and melodic solos, mid-tempo or double-bass drums and clean singing vocals. As it is the case of traditional heavy metal, we get some slow and some fast songs in this wonderful cocktail. The faster songs on this album are pure speed and metal, which really does the job on so many songs, especially on 'Guns For Hire', 'White Death', 'Futures Lost', 'New Horizons' and 'Warhead'. Among slower songs, my personal favorites are 'Shadows Of War' and 'Blood For Blood', which definitely stand out the most, but the final track 'Rebirth' is also pretty great and I personally found it one of the heaviest tracks on this album, while it's also the longest track which has a quite dynamic arrangement. When it comes to the overall songwriting, everything is very simple, catchy and melodic from start to finish, with powerful choruses that will crawl under your skin, which I’d describe as a magic that’s very reminiscent of good old classic NWOBHM bands. I personally find the melodies as this album’s strongest points, because I rarely come across heavy metal bands these days that make great songs like these. I was so drawn into this album that I really struggled while looking for weak spots, which I am happy to say that there aren’t any. This album is definitely “all killer, no filler” and every performance is at its peak, all the way from the guitars and vocals to bass and drums. The presentation with the shiny logo and cover art by Sadist Art Designs does a great job at capturing the overall essence of Tailgunner, especially that style that screams 80’s heavy metal. As for the sound production, there isn’t much that I could add other than it’s very well done and it’s loud, heavy and aggressive just the way I like it.
Some of my friends have already checked out this album and praised it for its greatness, so I am also happy to say the same about it. On top of that, I am very glad that this year is just filled with so many excellent releases in the traditional heavy metal category, and Tailgunner’s debut album Guns For Hire is no exception. Although there have been other great releases from the world of traditional heavy metal in 2023, I think I’ll definitely revisit this album more often since it left such a strong impression, and you simply can’t top that level of greatness that’s been around since the 80’s. For those of you who are actively following bands that are part of the New Wave Of Traditional Heavy Metal, you have probably already checked this album out, but for those of you who haven’t, don’t miss out on it!
Rating: 9 out of 10