Sunday, May 06 2012 02:39

KILL DEVIL HILL - "Self-titled" (Album Review)

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Well here's a surprise: the self-titled debut album from KILL DEVIL HILL is a pretty good record. In all honesty, I wasn't expecting much. Their name is over-used - having been slapped on at least one film, and recently there was that ILL BILL and DJ MUGGS collaboration called KILL DEVIL HILLS, not to mention an Australian group by that name (taken from a place in North Carolina), and a IRON MAIDEN Bruce Dickenson song that's actually called 'Kill Devil Hill.' Toss in numerous bands that have mentioned or eluded to the NC region, and yeah - I would've called my band something else, but that's not what Vinny Appice, Rex Brown, Dewey Bragg, and Mark Zavon did. They're KILL DEVIL HILL.

KDHcoverLed by the monstrous rhythm section of Brown (ex-PANTERA, DOWN) and Appice (former-BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN & HELL), KILL DEVIL HILL is a dozen-song batch of sludgy groove that taps into a niche normally occupied by the likes of Brown's previous bands, along with those like TEXAS HIPPIE COALITION, CORROSION OF CONFORMITY, and HELLYEAH. Zavon's riffage is powerful, something that would've been sadly overlooked had he stayed playing as guitarist #559 in RATT, and "unknown" (per press release) vocalist "Dewey" Bragg (ex-PISSING RAZORS) is impressive - leading to ALICE IN CHAINS comparisons that are not without merit. 

KILL DEVIL HILL really wastes no time in bringing the groove as they open up the record with "War Machine," a soundtrack-ready anthem that presents the band working together seamlessly. 

Listen to "VooDoo Doll" (courtesy Noisecreep)

Some of the album's best tracks are clustered dead-center in the 5,6,7 positions with ''Rise From the Shadows,''  ''We're All Gonna Die,'' and ''Strange.''

A little bit of back-end fatigue, but things wrap-up well for an album that might find itself in rotation quite a bit (in-between all the Kid's Music here at Rock Father HQ).

KILL DEVIL HILL is out on May 22, 2012 in North America via STEAMHAMMER/SPV.

The Rock Father Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars 

FTC Disclosure: A digital copy of KILL DEVIL HILL was provided to The Rock Father on behalf of STEAMHAMMER/SPV Records for review consideration. 

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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