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H.E.A.T - A Shot At Redemption EP

Monday, 17 February 2014 Written by Simon Ramsay

Forget Reckless Love and their pretty boy hair-metal. If you're looking for a hot young band belting out classy ‘80s hard-rock with passion, balls and chops to burn, then this Swedish quintet are currently head and shoulders above the rest.

After building up a reputation as a blistering live act, singer Kenny Leckremo threw a spanner in the works by quitting shortly after their second record, 2010’s 'Freedom Rock'. Fears grew when his replacement was named as Erik Grönwall, winner of the decidedly uncool TV show, Swedish Idol.  

Then, a couple of years later, ‘Address The Nation' landed, boasting a flawless collection of 10 stonking hard-rock gems with mega choruses, pumped up guitars and a jaw-dropping vocal performance from the new boy.

Anyone who witnessed their subsequent tour saw the band hitting new heights, spearheaded by a singer whose superior voice and showmanship could well take them to the next level. With their eagerly anticipated fourth album, 'Tearing Down The Walls', set to drop in mid-April, this EP provides a delicious snippet of what's to come.

The good news is H.E.A.T are on typically superb form, once again delivering quality songs that highlight their innate understanding of the genre and hair-raising musical ability. But, it has to be said that this collection’s lead single, A Shot At Redemption, is a slight deviation from the norm.  

With a marching beat and reverb heavy chorus it possesses a vibe similar to the Proclaimers, but after a few listens the song reveals itself as fresh, hugely addictive and evolutionary, without losing that swaggering energy and canny knack with a monster hook.

Under Your Skin is more typical, with its driving rhythm and surging, synthesised chorus coming on like the moody offspring of Living On The Run from 'Address The Nation'. One of that record's stand out moments - In And Out Of Trouble – is also given an acoustic makeover here. The song’s emotional core is accentuated by replacing the saxophone with a wistful bit of harmonica, and sung with utter conviction by the impressive Grönwall.

A cover of Parick Swayze's She's Like The Wind rounds things off, and although not possessing the same misty-eyed ‘80s ambience it's a much stronger version, with Grönwall’s powerhouse lungs eclipsing the late actor’s croon.

So, it's business as usual, with H.E.A.T once again releasing a collection of songs that are superior to anything Bon Jovi have managed in decades. The evidence suggests that the tunes are in place and, with a bit of luck, 'Tearing Down The Walls' will be the major breakthrough they deserve.

Photo: Gustaf Sandholm Andersson



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