Album Review: Hunting Giants – Mythos

Album Review: Hunting Giants - Mythos
Reviewed by Paul Hutchings

Progressive, sprawling yet intense and concise. Just a few words that could describe ‘Mythos’, the latest release from Canadian four-piece Hunting Giants. Weaving stories around their complex soundscapes, this is an album that should entice many who enjoy the more expansive styles that hard rock can offer.

Over the 44 minutes on offer, Hunting Giants provide a versatile range of music that switches from dark to light, riff heavy passages that give way to gentle calming segments, combined with high pitched harmonies which are likely to interest fans of Muse, Soundgarden and Alice in Chains amongst others.

After the title track opens the album, latest single ‘Ancient Text’ kicks in with some trashy riffs, a story about a doomsday prophecy from history. This segues into the grungy stomp of ‘Too Big to Kill’, which brings a different style and vibe to the previous two tracks. Hunting Giants has a big asset in vocalist Stephen Atkey, whose wide range is used to full effect.

Album Review: Hunting Giants - Mythos

With 13 songs on the album, there is a risk of cramming in quantity over quality, but that doesn’t feel like that in any way. Although the songs are generally short, the longest being the five-minute ‘Amongst Thieves’, the organic overall feel of the songs allows time for each to breath. ‘Amongst Thieves’ is dramatic, slowly building to a spectacular conclusion.

Confident in their musical ability, the songs that are crafted here work individually or interlinked. The instrumental ‘Whispers’ introduces some keyboard flourishes which underpin the whole track and provide another alternative style. Big rhythmic passages support the band’s overall power, with the bass of Corey Wharton and drummer Daniel Beavington combining to provide a stable platform for the band.

‘Mythos’ features a very 1990s vibe, offering elements of nostalgia as well as a contemporary feel. They can go hard or ease back, adding theatre and energy in a single song (‘Vanguard’), and then draw deep on emotions (‘Mantle’). It’s a heady mix that runs alongside the overall story line in the album.

‘Mythos’ isn’t an album that will appeal to all. Certainly, those whose tastes veer towards the heavier end of the metal spectrum may baulk at it. It should however, appeal to a wide range of fans, who will be able to appreciate the textured and layered songs and the ambition of a band who have delivered a fine release.

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