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Black Spiders: This Savage Land

Sheffield rockers stay ahead of the pack

There's a seemingly unstoppable glut of young rock'n'roll bands tearing around the UK and beyond at the moment, but Black Spiders’ excellent 2011 bow, Sons Of The North, is one of the few straight-up rock albums of recent times to have deservedly stood out from an increasingly busy crowd.

Thanks to this impressive feat, This Savage Land has one hell of a plate to step up to. Naturally, the album deals with this by kicking off with an absolute ripper in Knock You Out, all swaggering grooves and whisky-drenched hooks, and from thereon in there really is no let up.

From the faintly grungy bullishness of Young Tongues and the Sabbath-heavy riffing of Sleepy Demon, all the way to the Motörhead-harking velocity of Stick It To The Man and Teenage Knife Gang, this is rock music as it should be played in 2013 – loud, proud and filthy.

It goes without saying that This Savage Land isn’t reinventing the wheel by any means, but that’s not the point. Where others are happy to mimic and water down, Black Spiders take those ingredients and go harder, faster and louder. It’s what’s made Airbourne the best rock’n’roll band of recent times, and it’s put the Spiders in a very similar league.

Merlin Alderslade

Metal Hammer editor Merl heads up the world's biggest metal brand and is probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.