HYDROGYN – Deadly Passions

  • 6/10
    HYDROGYN - Deadly Passions - 6/10


Demolition Records
Release Date: June 23, 2008

User Review
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Throughout Rock history, visual presentation has been important to say the least, whether adorning monsters on album covers, or in some cases a bona-fide mascot, an image or a certain stage act to draw attention to the music in the first place.

Of course, to be in it for the long run, a band needs to be able to back up the visuals with a strong musical identity. In Hydrogyn’s case, female lead vocalist Julie Westlake is the immediate centre of attention. Relying heavily on her sex appeal, she single handedly strikes poses on the group’s covers and remains the absolute focus where media attention is concerned. So, does Hydrogyn have the musical substance to back it up?

Well, to a certain degree, yes. There is certainly some fine Rock music on display here. Whether it’s the stuff of durability is doubtful however; there is a sense of a band here on the constant verge to break through to some potential greatness, but for now it’s basically the voice of Westlake that sets Hydrogyn apart from others in the Modern Melodic Rock scene. The band has thus made a golden find, and with the front woman’s vocal background mainly being in Country, her voice and phrasing stands out considerably in today’s Hard Rock scene whose front women seem to mainly come from the Goth/Operatic school of image and vocal delivery.

There are occasional moments where Hydrogyn rise up to the challenge; “Candles Light Your Face” shows extra strength, and “Silent Animation” testifies of the band’s strivings for heavíness, how much they can further go in this direction without making Westlake’s voice misplaced is left to be heard. Talking of oddity though, the band’s version of Alanis Morissette’s “You Oughta Know” far betters the original. Although that doesn’t say much, it flows well in sonically with rest of the album. The likes of “Over U” show the band’s problem being a lack of distinctiveness. “Shadow” is the reasonable emotional ballad, but mainly because of the vocals again.

It’s early days yet though, perhaps the band will find more of an identity of its own on future releases. Because as said, the potential is there.


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