Hounds- Spacemad coverNew year, New beginnings. That’s what they say. So, what better way for a band to start the year off than with a début release? That’s exactly what Hounds are doing with the new years day release of ‘Spacemad’.

The band have labelled their sound as “Stoner Rock” a genre most famously associated with Queens of The Stone Age; however this album has a touch more metal infused into it than the gods of Stoner Rock.

This album gets off to drawn out start with Longboat. If first impressions were really the only impression this album would be a write off from the beginning. The repetitive intro simply consists of one line: “Staring at the sail of a longboat” for around 2 minutes. Just when you’re about to change the song it launches into a thrashing guitar orgy with melodic vocals and you think: “Hang on, this could be interesting.”

The album continues in this aggressive yet melodious method of combining a heavy metal tempo with largely hypnotic and engaging vocals. One of the stand out tracks on ‘Spacemad’ is Night of No. The instrumental arrangement is excellent here; with thumping drums and intricate yet thrashing guitar. It shows that this Dublin band does indeed have talent underneath the stoner subterfuge. Perhaps the only song that merits a comparison to Queens of The Stone Age is  Twinkie. The distorted quality of the vocals and stop-start air about the song is not a million miles away from their more menacing efforts.

This kind of music is not easy to come across in an industry stuffed full of skinny jean wearing, British accent faking bands; and will be a treat to the ears of anyone that is becoming disillusioned with current repetitive trends. While the album is not astonishing or mind-blowing it is compelling and angst ridden;  something you just don’t get in commercial friendly rock these days.