Sam Hell - Sam Hell
The latest big thing to come from our neighbours to the North, Sam Hell are a relatively young group having released their self-titled debut last May. Before diving in, as I tend to do with artists I am unfamiliar with, I went and did some research. After finding an interesting bio on their website and getting familiar with the promo materials, I was amped to hear just what they would bring to the table. According to the group, "(Sam Hell) is both heavy and diverse without ever offending the sensibilities of what good music should be." I'm glad to report that more or less sums it up.
Sam Hell fires off to a nice start, with a mellow little acoustic intro leading into the album's first single, the rousing and groove-heavy "You Don't Say", a song that I'm sure has gained them massive amounts of attention for it's mellow middle chorus and emotive lyrics. The entirety of the album is made up of melodic rock with subtle hints at an 'emo' mentality, or despair with a hint of hope to be more accurate. Each of the 3 members oozes talent, as the riffs are always creative, the bass always in the mix (and more often than not so much more), and the drumming is solid if not mind-blowing. More recommended listening would include a wonderful ballad that features an unknown female vocalist, "Smile", and the Offspring-esque rocker "War".
It won't be a surprise to this fan when Sam Hell pushes into the mainstream on the weight of one of their fantastic singles. This album is nothing but good songs, honest and well-played, and little else can be asked for. If you don't mind some from-the-heart passion and a little of that dreaded 'emo' creeping up into pop-oriented heavy rock, heavy on groove and integrity...give Sam Hell a chance.
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