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Hootenanny Freaks - 'Freakshow' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/ab/76/f7/hootenanny-freaks-freakshow-67-1568967550.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     September 17, 2019    
 
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If you like no-frills Hard Rock, this will be right up your street.

This is the debut album by the wonderfully named Hootenanny Freaks who hail from Finland. Amazingly, they were actually formed back in 1997 but are only now releasing their first full-length record, although there have been two previous EPs.

Opening track 'Jake Brake' is a foot-to-the-floor rocker that has an early eighties feel to it. The song is quite fast-paced and it sets the tone for the rest of the album. Next up is 'Brooder' which opens with a good vocal introduction before the track develops into something slightly more melodic than the previous song. This is followed by the title-track and it features a classic eighties Rock sound that is similar to Mötley Crüe in parts; it's one of my favourite cuts on 'Freakshow'.

Every album should have a good ballad and 'Breakaway' fits the bill nicely. It is a song that builds with some great guitar work from Esko Kemell, although for some reason it does remind me slightly of 'One' by Metallica. I would have to say this is the highlight of the release for me. It is quite apparent that the group are influenced by seventies and eighties Hard Rock. However, they do change styles for 'Eileen' which has a Southern Rockabilly feel to it, while 'Two Down' is a fun number that opens with an Irish-sounding intro; they both offer a perfect excuse for wearing your cowboy hat!

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The album continues with a pair of re-mixed earlier singles from the band in 'Storm Is Rising' and 'Rebel Soul', and both of these see a return to the Hard Rock theme of the earlier tracks. The album closes with a live version of 'Mean Man Killer' which has a hard rocking riff throughout and emphasises the group's love of straight-to-the-point Hard Rock.

This is certainly not a bad release, although I do prefer the slightly more melodic songs over the faster-paced rockers. It is good to see the band are versatile and this is clearly shown by the different styles on offer throughout the record.

If you like no-frills Hard Rock, this will be right up your street. Hopefully, the second album will not take so long.

Richard Epps

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