The Hyena Kill - Crosses
The Hyena Kill sound like an alleyway punch-up at the best of times and their latest single, Crosses, taken from their scorching debut album Atomised, is a veritably bruising smash and grab affair from a band which just can’t stop improving. We’ve chartered their rise over the years – last year’s double A-side Still Sick/Blisters leading Scarlett Pares Landells to dub their “magnificent noise…heavy yet danceable” – yet, after all this time they still manage to blow us away.
Opening with a cacophonous screech of feedback, the tribal animalism of Lorna Blundell’s tom heavy drum work then paves the way for another individualistic angular riff attack from Steven Dobb. While the crescendo may bring to mind the likes of Deftones and Lateralus era Tool, the searing fury that proceeds to melt your speakers cannot be anyone but this Mancunian duo.
Embedded in a raw, anxious and enraged garage rock sound, they still find room, amid the crossfire of gritty guitars and those danceable yet apocalyptic drums, for a invigorating vocal melody to pierce through the mix – and it hits you like a shot of adrenaline. There’s an undeniable honesty and integrity punctuating Dobb’s voice; you can feel the raw power of his emotions break through and, right there and then, you know you’re listening to something special.
In all, it’s a song that not only makes you want to smash everything in plain sight, but alongside it, that chilling melody embodies something painfully addictive. The song is short and snappy and that one time hook impales you in a way where you simply become a slave to repeat listens.
Few bands across the nation, let alone in this rain-drizzled city, can boast the ability to write songs that can make a Nirvana obsessed indie fan and a sludge metal deviant piss their pants with excitement. Their weird hybrid blend of styles however, just comes so naturally to them, and therein lays their brilliance.
You just can’t fuck with these guys.
Words: Phil Weller