Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Hounds-Begin Transmission Part 2

Metal Hammer

Included free with the latest issue of Metal Hammer* and serving as the follow-up to 2013's "Begin Transmission"** (which was actually included in the January 2013 issue of Metal Hammer!) the EP "Begin Transmission Part 2" was a pleasant surprise I must say. Whether I actually (still) have the other EP from this Essex-based (UK) band or not in my collection (as I've had a subscription to the magazine now for a l-o-n-g time and most certainly had to have seen it at one point or another) remains a mystery, but there is nothing at all mysterious about what this four-piece band rips out on their new four-track EP! For you see, when it comes to Hounds we're talking about explosive electronic punk from a band that can count The Prodigy among their fans! As a matter of fact this EP, which was recorded and produced by the band members themselves in the Air Raid Shelter(!), is not unlike something you might expect to hear coming from The Prodigy. Only when it comes to Hounds there's a difference in punk rock mentality. You could look at Hounds as being more like a garage rock version of The Prodigy, one with an everyman punk outlook and more of an approachable and accessible to all vibe. Of the three original compositions on this EP it's t toss up between "In Your Eyes" and "Watch And Learn". Opening number "The Wicked Witch" is just a tad cheesy (lyric-wise) for my tastes, but the other two cuts offer real range as Hounds goes from real punk on "In Your Eyes" to a number like "Watch And Learn" which is alternative rock disguised as electronic rock! As for the forth track on this EP? Well, just like on last year's "Begin Transmission" (where the band paid homage to Ministry with their version of "Stigmata"***) the group has tacked on a choice cover. In this case it's "Whiteout" by Killing Joke. The original version of this one can be found on Killing Joke's tenth studio album, "Pandemonium" (a beast of a release by the way!) and in the hands of Hounds it's real treat! In fact this whole EP is a real treat. Whether you can still find this issue or not isn't much to be worried about as you can download the EP off of iTunes. And, better yet, you can actually listen to both EPs by clicking on the YouTube link below o you know what you're in for before slapping down your hard-earned money! Coolness right?


*April 2014 (the one with Kirk "What happened to my dignity?" Hammett on the cover)

**By some accounts the EP was previously release (Summer of 2012 it sounds like) with Metal Hammer then scooping the group up then and actually re-releasing it in their magazine. Of course it's not a real big issue either way as it's every bit as good as part 2 has proven to be! And I know this as I went on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/user/houndstelevision) and checked it out!

***Ministry's 1988 album, "The Land of Rape and Honey", was the first album I ever heard from the group and I'm almost positive that I still have it on CD somewhere in this mess of mine that i like to call an office! It has remained a favorite moment of mine from Ministry with "Stigmata" serving as a stand-out track!

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