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Volume One
June 2004
Released: 2004, Black Lodge
Rating: 4.8/5
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland

The trials and tribulations of Hellfueled is quite a story. The band released demos under the names of Below and Firebug before lawsuits forced them to finally their change their name to Hellfueled for their first full-length, 2000’s VOLUME 4. Now, four years later, their sophomore effort entitled VOLUME ONE (what happened to “Volume 2” and “Volume 3?”) is finally out. VOLUME ONE was recorded at Sweden’s Studio Fredman and produced, engineered and mixed by Fredrik Nordstrom (Dream Evil, In Flames, Opeth, At The Gates). Taking elements of sludge, doom and stoner metal and adding a pitch-perfect imitation of Ozzy Osbourne’s voice circa 1973-4, the songs on this CD are frighteningly good. Why Hellfueled is not on a major metal label like Century Media is beyond me.

“Let Me Out” opens with Zakk Wylde-like guitar squeals and riffs before Andy Alkman’s voice comes in. Alkman has all the range and every inflection, nuance and vocal pattern that The Prince of Darkness himself once had. (Alkman’s voice is so close to that of Osbourne that he moonlights with a tribute band called Blizzard of Ozzy!) Jocke Lundgren’s sludgy riffs and Kent Svensson’s drum fills pepper the track with an infectiously heavy groove. “Midnight Lady” adds some female backing vocals during the choruses that offset Alkman’s wail. “Second Deal” and “Mindbreaker” show Alkman expanding his range a bit and hitting some great highs and lows in the choruses. “Eternal” is a bit slower in tempo than the rest of the songs but Lundgren pulls off an incredible solo. “Live My Life” has a killer speedy riff and a cool chorus. “Rock ‘n Roll” is full on sludge metal with a fuzzed out bassline and downtuned guitar riff. Lundgren channels Zakk Wylde’s style in many places but along with “Let Me Out,” this track is full of those “squeals” that Wylde is known for.

VOLUME ONE is one of the best small label releases I have heard in a long time. Hellfueled should have major success on their horizon and if the big labels have any sense, they will be climbing over each other to sign this band.

KILLER KUTS: “Let Me Out,” “Midnight Lady,” “Second Deal,” Eternal,” “Live My Life,” “Rock ‘n Roll”
Track Listing

1. Let Me Out
2. Midnight Lady
3. Second Deal
4. Someone Lives Inside
5. Eternal
6. Mindbreaker
7. Sunrise
8. Live My Life
9. Rock 'n Roll
10. Break Free
11. Hunt Me Down


Andy Alkman—Vocals
Jocke Lundgren—Guitar
Henke Lonn—Bass
Kent Svensson—Drums

Next review: » Hellhound - Anthology
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