UK based Hell’s Addiction set out to create an album that is going to, “shatter the public’s expectations.” A project that would both redefine who they are as a band and further their careers. The album 9 O’Clock Horses, set to be released by Weapon Records and Vanity Music Group on November 17, 2023, has blown out my speakers and I expect it will do the same to yours.
Background on the Band.
Hell’s Addiction, comprised of Ben Sargent on lead vocals, Dan Weir on guitar and backing vocals, Liam Sargent on guitar, Jason Green on bass and Luke Morley on drums, is a metal group that formed in 2010. At the time of inception, the group had yet employed Dan, so Ben was pulling double duty as both the front man and second guitarist. The 4-peice self-released their first two albums, Raise Your Glass, in 2013 and, Broken, in 2016. 2016 was a big year for the band, Ben said, “The dynamics of the band changed massively when adding Dan and growing into a five piece. Obviously playing the Boardie Take Over at Download was huge for us and saw our fan base grow pretty rapidly. I can’t help but feel this was the year when the band really found itself.”
With the addition of Weir, the bands output and overall performance improved exponentially. In 2018 the band added a new EP to their discography, Statutory Nuisance, and an additional one, V1.0, the following year. The later gathered quite some buzz in the scene reaching 7 on the iTunes chart, 1 in Amazon Hot New Releases and within 48 hours of its release it reached 2 on the Amazon Rock Album charts. The band has set to raise the bar with their latest album 9 O’Clock Horses. Jason Green said, “We truly believe we have found our sound with this album. It is packed to the rafters with our influences from decades past, with a heap of Hell’s Addiction added to mix that makes it our own. This album both musically and lyrically is the best to date.” But does this project live up to the band’s lofty expectations? The short answer is a resounding yes.
This album is an absolute blast front to back, packing a heavy hit with each one of its 12 tracks. Both the songwriting and production have seen improvement since their last EP, fully displaying the skill of each band member as they continue to expand their musical vocabulary. A combination of bashing drums, evil guitar, and maniacal laughter launch us into a head banger of an opener with “Leave it Alone”. Atmospheric and foreboding are the only words I can use to describe the intro to “Upside Down”, this is a must listen for any heavy music fan out there.
While I would love to gush about all the songs on this project, I’ll leave the rest as a surprise. However, you can expect amazing guitar work, killer vocals, thunderous drums and unique touches unlike any other project I’ve heard. As the colored leaves turn to white snow Hell’s Addiction gives us 9 O’Clock Horses, a gift that will surely last for years to come.