Monday, February 03, 2014

Cobra-To Hell

Austral Holocaust Productions

Before I dive into Cobra's sophomore full-length release "To Hell", which (from the looks of it) is due later on this month, I want to apologize to guitarist Nito Mejía (aka: Luis Alberto Mejía González). Nito was kind enough to share the band's upcoming eight-track release with me back in January and I'm not if I ever replied to him. As such let me just say that I'm sorry. Having said that this next part will not sound all that surprising. When it comes to Peru's Cobra (and truthfully everything as of late) my memory is really getting the best of me. I could have swore that I covered the band's 2009 split with Colombia's Skull, which I have on CD, and/or the band's 2011 album, "Lethal Strike", which I do not have on CD but really wish that I did! From looking through my old postings though nothing popped out. Did they somehow get deleted or did I never cover this excellent heavy metal act? If it's that second theory then how and/or why did this one just randomly happen to fall into my lap? Not that is matters either way really. Still, here's the scoop. Fronted as always by lead vocalist Harry "El Sucio" (whose husky voice is old-school in nature and has an 80's vibe to it!) the band, which was formed back in 2005, plays traditional heavy metal that borders on power metal. That's U.S. power metal to be precise and it's most definitely of the 80's variety. Guitars are handled by Andrés Rhor and the aforementioned Nito Mejía and (musically) we're talking about a combination of early 80's heavy metal riffs, some N.W.O.B.H.M. influences("Rough Riders"), a little bit of U.S. power metal (the more rough/underground kind that was everywhere during the middle part of the 80's), a splash of speed ("Fallen Soldier", "Beware My Wrath") and traditional heavy metal. The solos give "To Hell" an almost underground metal feeling as if this was a long lost record from the 80's being given a proper re-release. Meanwhile the rhythm section of  bassist/backing vocalist Augusto Morales and drummer Pochuck (Death Invoker, Metralla, Conan, ex-Putrid, ex-Crown of Worms) is sick and thick! Between the meaty riffs Morales and Pochuck's drop-dead serious drumming you have a seriously HEAVY backdrop upon which tracks like the eight minute-plus(!) opener "Beyond the Curse" can comfortably sit! Cuts like "Danger Zone" and "When I Walk The Streets" are also testament to that fact. Cobra actually plays "HEAVY" heavy metal. Does anyone else remember when that was actually the norm? Seems like ages ago. And yet this Peru-based five-piece seems to naturally roll that way. The title-cut is bursting from the seams with riff after riff of high fever heavy metal and by the time "Inner Demon" shuts the door on Cobra's "In Hell" one can't help but wish that more bands would return to this kind of honest and naturally heavy metal. Most definitely I'm recommending "To Hell" especially if 80's heavy metal is your thing and/or you miss the sounds of those tried and true metal bands that used to play at small dive bars/bingo halls (those days were awesome!) for their fans and themselves.  Find out more about Cobra here:

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