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Mad Hatter

   
       
       
       
     
             
Mad Hatter are a power metal band from Sweden founded in 2017 by singer Petter Hjerpe and drummer Alfred Fridhagen. Taking their name and imagery from a character in 'Alice's Adventures In Wonderland' (an 1865 novel by English author Lewis Carroll), the band released their self titled debut album in 2018.    
             
Before I begin my review...you know those moments when you see something and think to yourself "I've seen that somewhere before"...well, that's the exact feeling I got when I first saw the album cover for the debut release from Mad Hatter. After delving into the deep dark recesses of my extensive mind, it all became clear. The album cover bears an uncanny resemblance to the cover of the soundtrack that was released to accompany the 2012 film 'Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter'...click here to view both album covers. Okay there are some differences, the background, the axe has been replaced by a guitar and there is a face visible...but boy the similarity is spooky!    
             
But let's get on with my review...Sweden, a country known more for its output of hard rock than power metal, has begun making noises all across the power metal genre in recent years. And with the creation of Mad Hatter, the Swedish flag will be flying higher than ever before, announcing the bands emphatic debut. After its effects laden first minute, opening salvo 'Mad Hatter Shine' is a bombastic blast of European style power metal that sets the atmosphere for the next fifty seven minutes. Long standing fans of the power metal genre will hear similarities with the Andi Deris fronted Helloween, but if you're gonna sound like another band, why not sound like one of the best! At over eight minutes in length, 'Mad Hatter Shine' is a bold opener, but one that will have fans immediately hooked. Energy, power and pace all increase tremendously as 'Gunslinger' flies out of the blocks and is a head bangers dream as it hurtles along. The more melodic side to Mad Hatter takes front and centre with 'Dancing Light' a mid tempo plod. Nowhere near as energetic as the opening two songs, 'Dancing Light' is infectious and very catchy. Thankfully, all energy levels are restored to the max with 'Fly Away', featuring a slightly more screechy and wailing vocal delivery. Maybe the bands singer is trying to get away from an Andi Deris similarity discussion, a discussion that I am not gonna have.    
             
Simply titled 'Go', and boy does it go, and go fast, get your necks ready and brace yourself for some vigorous head banging. 'Go' is electrifyingly quick and a classic slice of European style power metal at its very best. And the best the band have to offer just gets better and better, as the album continues forth with the much heavier 'Phantom Riders'. Thundering along at a blistering pace, 'Phantom Riders' is the first of a triple barrage of power metal savagery. Next up is the fierce 'Face The Truth', blending high velocity with out and out pace, Mad Hatter stepping into the speed metal genre with this one. And that is where they stay for the most catchiest of all the songs on offer. 'Vengeance In His Mind' is a tremendously addictive and mesmerising romp. I defy anyone to not be head banging, foot stomping and singing along to the (sing a long style) chorus, such is the songs infectiousness. The melodic hard rock side of Mad Hatter makes a return with 'Bring Me The Moon', a pulsating mid tempo barnstormer. And talking of barnstormers, 'Mad Hatter Become' is quick paced, highly energetic and, lyrically, will make you want to drink a cup of tea! Excuse me for just a mo...the kettle has boiled. And for the albums last hurrah, Mad Hatter deliver a thrash metal infused slab of fury. The bonus song 'Death Angel Sings' is the fastest song on the album and is a furious romp of raucousness and thunder. Eleven songs, and not a ballad in sight, Mad Hatter have delivered a breathless fifty seven minutes of addictive and mesmeric power metal.    
             
Overall, a brilliant debut album, delivering a huge deluge of blazing power metal, full of energy, intensity and an infectiousness second to none.    
             
             
Review By Iron Mathew Collins    
             
Reviewed For Metal Gods TV    
             
             
Other reviews:    
             

           
           
Interview with Mad Hatter (July, 2018)      
           
Click here to read my interview      
     
     
     
           
             
             
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