THLDutch groove laden thrashers The Hangman’s Lament are an interesting bunch. Inspired by Norse mythology, in particular the tale of Odin hanging himself from a tree for a period of days to gain enlightenment, and using their time in previous bands to bring the lament portion of their name, the Amsterdam based thrashers have a simple purpose – thrash hard, groove hard, thrash and groove harder! With solid riffs to back them up and saying that if you’re into the likes of Pantera, Down and Metallica then you should enjoy them, let’s see what this slice of payback in musical form is all about.

“Intro” is exactly what it says, a sub-1 minute track which flows into the following one and whilst it does set the scene, it would have been better just being a part of the next track and forgoing the need for an intro. It’s slightly bluesy sounding atmospheric delivery works well and it does flow on to “Time To Raise Hell Again” quite well so there is that in its favour, but I still think it was pointless keeping it separate.

“Time To Raise Hell Again” is a real powerful track. Powerful vocal roars reminiscent of bands like Crowbar and Down with some real powerful groove laden riffs and a real solid pace gets you headbanging right away. Well paced lyrical and riff delivery benefits this track greatly and it’s got the right balance for letting loose and for standing there with beer in hand caught up in the groove. It’s a superb way to introduce the band and their sound as it basically pulls no punches, laying out exactly what to expect from the Dutch act.

“Follow The Dead Lights” has a more modern thrash edge to it. Thunderous low end from the bass and real tightly muted and chugging riffs make up the spine of this track. A storming groove flows through it and the vocals are real raw, similar to Randy Blythe of Lamb Of God in their delivery. It’s a good take on the modern thrash style, actually backing up the heaviness with some substance, a simple truth often overlooked by most modern thrash acts who don’t go the way of the old school approach and it works well, drawing together the riff heavy sub genres and combining them in the right amount to accommodate for different tastes.

“My Last Feud” has a real raw and dirty intro riff which just oozes sleaze. The NOLA style of metal is ripe on this tracks sound and you can see the Down influence right here. Dirty, rough round the edges and loud as hell, its straight to the point. No skirting round the issue, just full on headbanging grooves with some serious weight behind it.

“The Devil’s Throne” closes the EP. It has a rather dramatic and intense start which builds to a real fast paced pseudo-thrash groove. Slightly chaotic initially, it goes into a real bouncing riff which thunders away. Infectious, it sinks its hooks into you and you can’t help but get caught up in it. As it slips to a more solid thrash chug, the urge to windmill grows along with the heaviness and the way the riffs just flow is rather enjoyable.

Overall, this is a good taster for a band who seem to have a bright future ahead of them. Thrash for the stoners, Groove for the thrashers, it bridges the gap between the two similar yet totally different sub genres and makes it work rather well. The only drawback is it is rather samey in its approach, but sometimes repetition is the way to go, making something memorable and able to stick in your mind, making you want more… Whatever way you look at it, this is a good EP and hopefully the full length comes soon!

(7/10 Fraggle)