Hyde & Beast – Slow Down

Dynamic duo, Hyde & Beast, have gained a lot of attention since the understated release of their debut single And The Pictures In The Sky. With both members stemming from other bands, this project was never meant to gain momentum the way it has. Now they’ve steamed ahead and released their album, Slow Down, which is just as original and intriguing as their previous tracks.

Slow Down mixes their more upbeat numbers with blues, folk, country and ballad tracks. After And The Pictures In The Sky and Never Come Back, songs like Last Chance For A Slow Dance and If You Could Buy Me Anything come as a bit of a welcome change, introducing more solemn and fragile beats to their sound.

Hyde and Beast

Neil Bassett and Dave Hyde

Focusing mainly on blues influences, Hyde & Beast sound like they’ve walked out of the 1970s music chart, especially with tracks like All Because Of You with a chorus that rings in your ears with the classic rock style music accompanying it. Dave Hyde’s vocals and harmonies here sound very similar to Freddie Mercury’s style of singing in the way he holds the notes.

Track four, You Will Be Lonely, has to be one of my favourites. It combines country, acoustic and blues into a sweet sounding, upbeat number (if you ignore the repeated lyrics of the chorus ‘You Will Be Lonely’). The harmonies however sound like they have been done by one of the BeeGees which could be disastrous but instead sound fantastic with the quirky country-based music.

Slow Down has so many different influences running through it. Wolfman Blues is a solid blues track but it’s not totally what you expect. It has been strangely distorted leading it to become quite disorientating. It sticks to its blues roots in the usual way. It’s an instrumental track which breaks the album up but in places it does sort of sound like some children have been let loose in the studio to play with all the equipment…

Lord, Send For Me however is the archetypal blues and country influenced track. It is yet another song that sounds like it’s from another era. This sound is rather unusual in today’s music scene but Hyde & Beast seem to be bringing back what once made good music. With strong folk influences, this has to be another of my favourites. The combination of the melodies and harmonies are perfect.

Towards the end of the album, it seems to calm down and become even more relaxing (if that’s possible). Everything gradually grinds to a halt. Go To Sleep is a lovely acoustic track taking everything away from the heavy bass, drum beats and electric guitar tricks found in the other songs. This strips the band back to basics as does Louis’ Lullaby (another instrumental with a few oohs and aahs in the background). Putting these at end of album helps bring it all to a close.

Hyde & Beast have produced a great album. It’s experimental, it’s intriguing and it’s most definitely worth a listen.

Slow Down is available to buy now.

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