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Hiob AD - ‘Iron Skies’

posted 4 Jan 2017, 05:28 by Paul Woodward


Review by Woody

More often than not a band’s name, album title and artwork will be a good indication of what to expect from them. So, with Hiob AD I presumed it was going to be Scandinavian power metal with possible folk touches, I was very wrong and it’s true you should never judge a book by its cover. ‘Iron Skies’ is the debut album from Hiob AD which sees drummer / multi-instrumentalist Oliver Lonien come to the forefront with his own band for the first time. Also, based on his previous bands which include Punk and Death Metal you’d be still off the mark on predicting the Hiob AD sound. Even then it’s hard to be pigeonholed – ‘Iron Skies’ has a haunting pop rock vibe with strong alt rock touches and lots of acoustic guitar thrown into the mix.

The album has a strong melancholic feel; it can be very bleak sounding at times and this downbeat edge is accentuated by Lonien’s deep and moody vocal style. It’s not a commercial album at all and this in itself will make this album an acquired taste but I think people who get hooked in will appreciate this album immensely. If your curious about the band checking out ‘Mary Ann’, ‘The Storm’ and ‘Live To Be Free’ would be good starting points and if those songs don’t grab your attention it’s highly unlikely this album will be for you. There are some very intriguing aspects to the musicianship with the mix of acoustic guitars, pop twists, blues guitar licks and atmospheric landscapes and I think those looking for something a little more meaningful and experimental will find much to like about this album.

Many of the songs are inspired by Lonien’s strong political and social beliefs, so he does put messages and opinions into his lyrics. This doesn’t make it the easiest album to connect with and the moody vocals and dark nature of the music can make the sound a little pessimistic but it is thoughtful and as I’m sure Lonien intended thought provoking.

Overall it is a decent album, if it clicks with your personal musical tastes, but it can be very bleak and extremely dark at times so you really do need to be in the right mood to fully appreciate its melancholic beauty.

Track Listing: Mary-Ann / When You Left Your Life Behind / Open Your Eyes / Long Road / Be What You Want / Iron Skies / The Storm / Sweetest Feeling / She Was / The Blacklist / Trip On The Darkside / Live To Be Free / Trust In Yourself / In The Spotlights

Album Rating: 7/10

Woody’s Essential Track: Mary Ann