Heavy Pettin – 4 Play (Own Label)

Heavy Pettin – 4 Play (Own Label)

Brit rock veterans return after a long, long hiatus...

Brit rockers Heavy Pettin‘s story will be well known to regular readers of Sentinel Daily; Now back on the trail after a long hiatus with original members Steve ‘Hamie’ Hayman (vocals) and guitarist Gordon Bonnar plus bassist Jez Parry and Mick Ivory (both from Bonnar’s former band Sugarpill) and guitarist Dave Aitken, they’re dipping their collective toes in the recording water after getting back into live shape with this enticing little four tracker, cunningly entitled 4 Play...

First track Get Back To You is imbued with the same sort of strut the band became famous for back in the day; muscular guitars duel with shimmering melodies and it’s like the last thirty seven years never happened, personnel changes notwithstanding. Bonnar and Hayman tap directly into what made this band such an enticing proposition in the first place, with the result being a stunning opening statement of intent.

However the track that follows, Tell Me Why doesn’t sparkle quite so brightly, sounding strangely like something Saxon might have recorded in their late eighties wilderness years. At least it’s in the same postcode time wise as that opening track…

Who We Are (an Aitken composition, and the only track of the quartet not written by Bonnar and Hayman) fares better, riding in on a greasily attractive opening riff that’s a little dirtier under the fingernails than it’s counterparts and comes equipped with an infectious singalong chorus that’s doubtless already become a live favourite. It’s a little different to the normal HP way of doing things, proving that the band is open to be something other than just a nostalgia vehicle.

That said, the final track – and the best thing here by some way – comes straight outta 1987. Hard To Hold is a majestic power ballad that opens reminiscently of Heart‘s Alone (listen carefully and tell me I’m wrong)  before erupting into a massive chorus and a hair-raising final section of urgent drumming and heroic soloing. It’s another crowd pleaser in the making, but perhaps more importantly it also leaves the listener looking forward to the prospect of a new album full of material of this quality which the band hope to release later in the year. Welcome back guys!

4 Play is out now.

Scott Adams

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