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XII Boar – Beyond The Valley Of The Triclops album review

An orgy of garage metal and stoner dropkicks with the new album from XII Boar

XII Boar album cover

The album cover may suggest second-rate sword’n’sorcery hokum, but in reality this is a vibrant roast of bullwhip riffs and headbutting melodies. You can hear Motörhead, Clutch, Scissorfight and The Godz locked in a tag-team fight, and the result is utterly enveloping.

These Aldershot nutters drive through walls with such a natural rhythm their songs become compulsive. Beyond The Valley and The Hustle set the trend, with a sleazy sneer and a distaste for anything that puts the brakes on the flow. But there’s far more than speed thrills. Abyssal Lord not only nods towards classical piece Hall Of The Mountain King, but even enters into more funky territory. And the tequila-soaked slowburn of Black And Blues suits a tale of all round indulgence in Mexico. Tight but never to the point of strangling the energy, this is a riotous second album.

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica (opens in new tab), published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009.