Corsair: Corsair

Pittsburgh proto-metallers get dizzy on Thin Lizzy

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A fuzz pedal does not a 70s rock band make, even if you have bought some really cool flares. Thankfully, Corsair have far more up their sleeves. Rather than going for brute force and volume, they instead tap into that point at which a nascent heavy metal was just starting to become distinct from hard rock.

Bookended by prog flourishes and driven by beautifully played twin lead work, comparisons to Thin Lizzy abound throughout their self-titled debut. It’s not just down to the duelling axes but, particularly on Chaemera, they’ve really captured some of Phil Lynott’s ability to match gorgeous pop hooks with killer hard rock. At their heaviest – on Gryphon and Of Kings And Cowards – they evoke the spirit of early Cirith Ungol jamming with April Wine.

If your idea of heavy metal is nothing but studded leather then perhaps you’d best depart, but for those who love bands from the time before the genre had been fully nailed down, or if you just want to hear a brilliant band, then Corsair will be manna from heaven.