Culloden play Heavy Metal. A band from Newcastle Upon Tyne in the North East of England, heavily inspired and influenced by some of the legendary acts from their home region that have graced with their Heavy Metal majesty. Venom, Satan, Mythra, Raven, Tysondog, Atomkraft, Avenger, Spartan Warrior, Battleaxe just to name a few.
The band came together first in 2010 by frontman Andrew Halliday to jam with a college classmate but never quite took off seriously. in late 2017 that all changed. The current lineup came together and quickly took to begin writing and recording an EP of four songs, Witchpricker, in early 2018. Emboldened with the addition of Stefan Rosic joining later in 2018, the band’s lineup was complete.
On the bass and vocals is Andrew Halliday, on Rhythm Guitar is Karl Moore, on the Drums is Alex Connor, on Lead Guitars are Stefan Rosic and Ryan Thompson. They write their songs based on the dark stories of history, myth and folklore near and far from our North Eastern homelands.
Witchpricker will be out on June 24th 2019 via Heathen Tribes.
Ohhhh…the old-school vibes are immediate with this one. The opening riffs, bass chug and high singing of Lindisfarne will be very familiar to fans of NWOBHM and the tougher and rougher side of the classic guitar driven sound. The slower tempo gives way for a faster and fatter finale that will get fists clenched and pumping.
Hills of Culloden galloping riffing and slightly more aggressive edge is more of the same but with a bit more bite. There’s a bit more wildness to the hooks here and while it is exciting, it starts to wear thin. Thankfully a tempo change midway freshens it up. Simplifying the rhythm, it sees the vocals switch to spoken word before announcing the impending return to a faster and solo driven finish.
The title track doesn’t change up the formula at all. Not that anyone is asking for it too. A powerful set of lungs are showcased here reaching throat-shredding levels. All while the guitars and drums run away with all the power of a bullet train. Again we get a drop, this one taking things to near silence before the drums lead things back in. Not quite as effective as the former track even if the shout of ‘witch…burn’ is pretty wicked.
Finally we get Red Cliff, an actual short track from the UK heavy metallers meaning we get a balls out hyper finish. Not as layered as what came before but wild and fun.
Sounding very dated before it’s even got out of the blocks, Culloden at least make this throwback less of a tribute and more of a renaissance. Feeling a bit old and crusty today? Maybe Culloden’s Witchpricker will be exactly what you need.
Culloden – Witchpricker Full Track Listing:
2. Hills of Culloden
4. Red Cliff
Culloden - Witchpricker (Heathen Tribes)
The Final Score - 6.5/10