Album Review: Horror My Friend - A Million Hands (2014 EP)

Adelaide trio Horror My Friend have been consistently fashioning themselves into one of the city's most promising young rock bands in the past few years, securing popular shows in the city and interstate and earning kudos from both the local scene and that of triple j in recent times. Their debut EP A Million Hands is released at a perfect time for the band, therefore, with the momentum surrounding the heavier grunge rock sound which has propelled the likes of Violent Soho, DZ Deathrays and others into the international spotlight only continuing to grow.

The unabashed ambition Tom, Josh and Alex have brought to their live shows is captured well on the record, though perhaps they've learned more about musical structure and form, working with the rock elements they've got down pat instead of trying to include licks of every single band they like. It's good to show technique and appreciation, but it's even more noteworthy when you see a band showcase the ability to highlight a clear creative direction, not a simple regurgitation of another band's work. For this band, it's a noticeable improvement from earlier works - there's a sharper, revitalised facet of Horror My Friend which is seen on tracks "Be Good", "Colourblind" and "No Energy" which will make long-time followers perk up and take notice, especially.

Tom Gordon is a sheer joy to watch perform live and although this is a review of the record, I feel it's worthy of noting how well the passion he brings to performing is related on A Million Hands. When you watch him really hit his stride, it's almost like his whole body becomes electric - he really throws himself into each lyric and it's no different on this record. He lunges with every word and pulls back when the mood calls for it.

Horror My Friend will prove themselves to be more than a worthy British India support act and younger tour bros of Sincerely, Grizzly with this EP. Dedicated care taken with making this between the three band members, plus some good solid production behind it (Richard Bowers did a sweet job on mixing, while the band had Adelaide stalwart Matt Hills to record with etc), has made A Million Hands more of a snapshot of a young band looking to achieve more than people may expect of a local Adelaide rock band. There is obviously room for improvement on this record, as there are with any debut, but for the trio who've been developing a great live presence and a considered approach to how they make music, it's a decent effort.

Playing loud and brazenly comes naturally to Horror My Friend and while it's evident that this isn't going to stop any time soon, they've shown that they can be subtle while maintaining effectiveness at the same time.

Review Score: 7 out of 10.


Horror My Friend launch A Million Hands in Adelaide at the Crown n Anchor Hotel tonight! Get your tickets from Oztix.