Thrash Hits

March 26th, 2009

Album: Gallows – Grey Britain

gallows 2009 promo photo thrash hits band grey britain

Gallows
Grey Britain
Warner Brothers
04 May 2009

by Raziq Rauf

When it comes to hot British bands upon whose shoulders apparently lies the weight of the world, they don’t come much hotter than Gallows. Lauded and damned in equal measure, Grey Britain is the most important record of their career.

A million words have been written, spoken, spat and shat about the Watford punk rockers signing to a major label plus other non-punk-associated endorsements as well as the relative disappointment of their debut, Orchestra Of Wolves compared to their live show. It doesn’t matter. As soon as this record came into existence, none of that mattered.

gallows grey britain album cover warner brothers artwork thrash hits

Punk rock’s all about going against the grain and how better to kick off a brand new record than with the sounds of a cello and gentle swash, presumably against a riverbank. It’s almost two minutes before Frank Carter’s gnarled voice, but what an entrance.

In just over half a minute of sludgy, strident riffs, he manages to namecheck Great Britain, the Queen, the Crown and the Union flag as well as burning down and being buried alive. The tone is well and truly set.

What follows is much more like what you might expect from this rabble: grand calls-to-arms in ‘London Is The Reason’, magnificent Southern-fried riffs to throw down to in ‘Leeches’, near-constant gang vocals in ‘Black Eyes’, a killer vocal line (“We are the new black / We’re as serious as a heart attack”) in ‘I Dread The Night’ and neck-breaking, ska-tinged punk rock in ‘Death Voices’.

What do you think about Gallows?

  • Untouchable - THE best band around. (35%, 256 Votes)
  • Punk rock is f*cking cool again! (32%, 235 Votes)
  • Whatever. (18%, 128 Votes)
  • Punk? Major label? Pull the other one. (8%, 61 Votes)
  • I'll show 'em what a fight looks like! (7%, 50 Votes)

Total Voters: 730

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But then the last minute of ‘Death Voices’ hits and the outro is a gentle string-laden affair. Call it a respite from the furious five-song-long hardcore onslaught you just endured, but Act I of lead single, ‘The Vultures’ continues with acoustic guitars and clean vocals from Carter. The anticipation they build for the inevitable eruption is incredible. This song is one of the finest six minutes you’ll hear this year.

Those sweet tones Carter teases out might be the most talked about feature but it’s the trademark gang vocals that are the reinforcing attribute of this album. Appearing in all but two of the tracks, they make the band ooze togetherness. Added to the ferociously inclusive ‘The Riverbed’ and the general theme of making this fair land great again, there is unity running through every bitter moment of Grey Britain.

Biffy Clyro frontman, Simon Neil’s cameo during ‘Graves’ is actually quite unnecessary but along with the musical dichotomy of ‘Misery’ – which again entertains those strings before Frank Carter rudely awakens us with a nice, loud, “FUCK!” – it’s another nice surprise to keep you on your toes as the album moves toward its close.

Watch Thrash Hits TV: Gallows talk about Grey Britain

If you’re looking for a mark of progression here, make a comparison of their apparent trademark album finales. The epic, heartfelt title track that closes their blitzkrieg debut descends into faded-out chaos in well under five minutes, while the bitter social diatribe known as ‘Crucifucks’ closes Grey Britain to the sounds of more melancholy string with exactly eight minutes on the clock. With maths, there’s a 68 per cent increase but the power and the overall effect is wholly unquantifiable.

With Grey Britain, the great white hopes of British punk rock have realised every one of their hopes and dreams. With the musicianship now matching the showmanship and a superb, higher level of thought going into the creation of this record, Grey Britain is the record that will inspire a generation. The future, therefore, is in good hands. Welcome back to your new favourite band.

Sound like: The Bronx, Maylene & The Sons Of Disaster, blood red Britain
Top tracks: Misery, Crucifucks, I Dread The Night

6/6

Gallows – Grey Britain tracklisting
The Riverbank
London Is The Reason
Leeches
Black Eyes
I Dread The Night
Death Voices
The Vulture (Acts I & II)
The Riverbed
The Great Forgiver
Graves
Queensberry Rules
Misery
Crucifucks


Bands

Comments

  • http://www.itsonthemind.wordpress.com/ Luke Morton

    I physically can’t wait to hear this

  • http://www.itsonthemind.wordpress.com/ Luke Morton

    I physically can’t wait to hear this

  • http://www.itsonthemind.wordpress.com Luke Morton

    I physically can’t wait to hear this

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ Raz

    I’ve actually worn my copy out. The CD does not work any more.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com Raz

    I’ve actually worn my copy out. The CD does not work any more.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ Hugh Platt

    As if you weren’t going to get the fancy DVD package when it comes out…

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ Hugh Platt

    As if you weren’t going to get the fancy DVD package when it comes out…

  • http://www.thrashhits.com Hugh Platt

    As if you weren’t going to get the fancy DVD package when it comes out…

  • wadds

    i need this album now!

  • wadds

    i need this album now!

  • http://www.myspace.com/inthesanity Jason Freeman

    F**k Yes! Gallows should rule the country. They talk more sense than those twats that call themselves the British Government.
    “Grey Britain is the record that will inspire a generation.” it’s already started inspiring me already and i ain’t even heard it yet. hXc is back.

  • http://www.myspace.com/inthesanity Jason Freeman

    F**k Yes! Gallows should rule the country. They talk more sense than those twats that call themselves the British Government.
    “Grey Britain is the record that will inspire a generation.” it’s already started inspiring me already and i ain’t even heard it yet. hXc is back.

  • Jason

    I cant wait for this album!!

  • Jason

    I cant wait for this album!!

  • Martin

    I was a little dissapointed with The Vulture, sounded like an Amen Bside however i am still totally excited for the album and hearing the vulture part 1.

    Really really keen and am seeing the and ETID in Bristol in May.

    Fuckin A

  • Martin

    I was a little dissapointed with The Vulture, sounded like an Amen Bside however i am still totally excited for the album and hearing the vulture part 1.

    Really really keen and am seeing the and ETID in Bristol in May.

    Fuckin A

  • http://www.twitter.com/eddy_rx10 Eddy

    What is the title to that track playing behind the video?

  • http://www.twitter.com/eddy_rx10 Eddy

    What is the title to that track playing behind the video?

  • http://www.itsonthemind.wordpress.com/ Luke Morton

    It’s called Abandon Ship

  • http://www.itsonthemind.wordpress.com Luke Morton

    It’s called Abandon Ship

  • Peter

    I still don’t see anything new here that hasn’t been done before. Bands like The Clash did this better 30 years ago and still sound more relevant today. You can instantly tell from the lyrics in the songs there’s a sense of someone trying too hard to seek attention. The Sex Pistols made more of a dent (if only barely) in the beginning with that sort of stance, and its hardly going to change now.

    A classic case of the hype machine going nuts. Orchestra of Wolves wasn’t that great and Grey Britain isn’t going to change my opinion at least that the best bands are the ones that don’t get blown constantly out of proportion by constant ass-kissing and somewhat frenzied ‘amazement’, which is unfortunately what happened right from the off with Gallows and many other ‘great new’ UK bands in recent memory.

  • Peter

    I still don’t see anything new here that hasn’t been done before. Bands like The Clash did this better 30 years ago and still sound more relevant today. You can instantly tell from the lyrics in the songs there’s a sense of someone trying too hard to seek attention. The Sex Pistols made more of a dent (if only barely) in the beginning with that sort of stance, and its hardly going to change now.

    A classic case of the hype machine going nuts. Orchestra of Wolves wasn’t that great and Grey Britain isn’t going to change my opinion at least that the best bands are the ones that don’t get blown constantly out of proportion by constant ass-kissing and somewhat frenzied ‘amazement’, which is unfortunately what happened right from the off with Gallows and many other ‘great new’ UK bands in recent memory.

  • Kerrus

    Well I for one cannot wait to get this album and see them playing live. The thing I really like about Gallows is they seem to genuinly not give a crap what anybody else thinks about their music. It’s like if they like it then it’s good enough so who cares what anyone thinks. Brillz.

  • Kerrus

    Well I for one cannot wait to get this album and see them playing live. The thing I really like about Gallows is they seem to genuinly not give a crap what anybody else thinks about their music. It’s like if they like it then it’s good enough so who cares what anyone thinks. Brillz.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ LutonsFinest

    Another turgid steamer dropped from the behind of Watfords grimiest. Is Britain really that bad? Shitcunts.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ LutonsFinest

    Another turgid steamer dropped from the behind of Watfords grimiest. Is Britain really that bad? Shitcunts.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com LutonsFinest

    Another turgid steamer dropped from the behind of Watfords grimiest. Is Britain really that bad? Shitcunts.

  • http://www.segadriven.com/ Hairyman

    They’re still a rip-off of Every Time I Die. I can’t understand why everyone says they’re so edgy and new when they’ve literally stole ETID’s musical style and barked all over it. At least there’s some melody to Buckley’s voice.

  • http://www.segadriven.com/ Hairyman

    They’re still a rip-off of Every Time I Die. I can’t understand why everyone says they’re so edgy and new when they’ve literally stole ETID’s musical style and barked all over it. At least there’s some melody to Buckley’s voice.

  • http://www.segadriven.com Hairyman

    They’re still a rip-off of Every Time I Die. I can’t understand why everyone says they’re so edgy and new when they’ve literally stole ETID’s musical style and barked all over it. At least there’s some melody to Buckley’s voice.

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ Raz

    I love this album

  • http://www.thrashhits.com/ Raz

    I love this album

  • http://www.thrashhits.com Raz

    I love this album

  • http://www.myspace.com/andy_is_hottt Julia

    I disagree strongly with you “hairy man”
    Buckleys voice sucks. There’s no range and he cant belt out a “melodic” note worth shit.
    Sure, i can semi-see what you mean, ETID and Gallows can be subjected under the same genra,
    but there are very big differences between the two, maybe you wanna listen closer and think harder next time you decide to right shit down. mf da.

  • http://www.myspace.com/andy_is_hottt Julia

    I disagree strongly with you “hairy man”
    Buckleys voice sucks. There’s no range and he cant belt out a “melodic” note worth shit.
    Sure, i can semi-see what you mean, ETID and Gallows can be subjected under the same genra,
    but there are very big differences between the two, maybe you wanna listen closer and think harder next time you decide to right shit down. mf da.

  • http://www.myspace.com/andy_is_hottt Julia

    I disagree strongly with you “hairy man”
    Buckleys voice sucks. There’s no range and he cant belt out a “melodic” note worth shit.
    Sure, i can semi-see what you mean, ETID and Gallows can be subjected under the same genra,
    but there are very big differences between the two, maybe you wanna listen closer and think harder next time you decide to right shit down. mf da.

  • http://www.segadriven.com/ Hairyman

    Finally heard some of this the other day and it seems like Gallows just continue to find another band to rip off with every one of their albums. Like I said before, the 1st record sounds like Every Time I Die and this one is like a carbon-copy of Cancer Bats.

  • http://www.segadriven.com/ Hairyman

    Finally heard some of this the other day and it seems like Gallows just continue to find another band to rip off with every one of their albums. Like I said before, the 1st record sounds like Every Time I Die and this one is like a carbon-copy of Cancer Bats.

  • http://www.segadriven.com Hairyman

    Finally heard some of this the other day and it seems like Gallows just continue to find another band to rip off with every one of their albums. Like I said before, the 1st record sounds like Every Time I Die and this one is like a carbon-copy of Cancer Bats.

  • steve

    check out these pics of the new grey britain vinyl:

    http://s638.photobucket.com/albums/uu102/jamiebn88/?albumview=slideshow

  • steve

    check out these pics of the new grey britain vinyl:

    http://s638.photobucket.com/albums/uu102/jamiebn88/?albumview=slideshow

  • steve

    check out these pics of the new grey britain vinyl:

    http://s638.photobucket.com/albums/uu102/jamiebn88/?albumview=slideshow

  • http://www.relentlessenergy.com/livesoftheartists Gallows in Relentless Energy F

    They feature in this preview…..with a documentary film out next month.

  • http://www.relentlessenergy.com/livesoftheartists Gallows in Relentless Energy Film

    They feature in this preview…..with a documentary film out next month.

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