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Jettblack: Disguises

Thoroughly modern, thoroughly metal.

If ‘swagger metal’ doesn’t actually exist as a subgenre, then Jettblack are here to put that right. One of the main features of their third album is the groove and swing of the tracks – they batter and pummel with a loose-hipped precision that defies you to sit still.

Add to this a desire to expand wherever possible on the classic metal template and you have a modern-sounding album shot through with a huge amount of texture and variety.

Slaves kicks off in a driven Judas Priest-like vein before handclaps and a chain-gang-style chant introduce Explode. That leads into the juddering Poison Rain, and as an opening salvo, it’s pretty impressive stuff. Throughout this album they drop infectious melodic hooks – Enemy and Human are real standouts – while the towering title track ups the ante considerably on the massive-chorus front.

Well paced, fresh and brimming with more than a few clever ideas – plenty to swagger about./o:p