Hey Colossus have undergone a spectacular metamorphosis in the last three years - the 2015 Rocket Recordings double-drop of ‘In Black And Gold’ and ‘Radio Static High’ displayed not only a band with a work rate to put most all their contemporaries to shame, but one arriving at an atmospheric and rewarding sound with as much flair for the beguiling as the barbaric. Changes may have been afoot in the Hey Colossus camp, yet their latest transmission ‘The Guillotine’ marks another peak for an innovative force in the realm of heavy amplification. Darker and more brooding than their recent work, it’s also perhaps their most richly melodic to date - the interplay of their three guitar lineup has never sounded more fluent than on these eight songs, nor their songcraft more well-defined.
This is a record whose alchemical charge arrives from a reinvention of loud rock shapes into forms both feral and fresh - whilst Hey Colossus can still bludgeon with overamped vigour, as on the hypnotic and devastating krautrock-Jesus-Lizard hybrid of ‘Back In The Room’ they can also deliver the dusky and haunting waltz-time serenade of ‘Calenture Boy’ with uncompromising fortitude, with the new-found confidence and allure of Paul Sykes’ vocals at the forefront. These menacing and immersive songs chronicle a band exploring a unique sound and invigorating approach in a decade in which cliches and genre pieces in the realm of the psychedelic have frequently surrounded - here the six-piece find themselves transcending the limitations of the underground scene from whence they came, whilst exposing the paucity of inspiration in much of the guitar-rock mainstream. Hey Colossus are at their sharpest, and none will survive ‘The Guillotine’.