Los Angeles-based heavy metal icons Hellion are back in a big way. Vocalist Ann Boleyn and the boys have recently inked a contract with London-based Cherry Red Records that will have them releasing three albums this year.
The first of the three Hellion albums is a 2-disc anthology entitled To Hellion and Back, which will be released on April 1, 2014 and chronicles the band’s beginnings from 1982 to the present. And as a special gift to their longtime dedicated fans, the first 1,000 copies will be autographed by Boleyn, the band’s legendary lead singer.
In 1983, when the term “female metal singer” did not exist, Hellion’s demo recordings (released as a self-titled Mini-LP) climbed to Number 6 in England’s rock charts. In America, Hellion however was regarded by the corporate music world as “too heavy” for a band with a female singer.
Despite never releasing an album on a major record label, Hellion was the first female-fronted metal band to be featured on MTV and VH-1 and was also the first U.S. metal band to perform in the former-Soviet Union at the Monsters of Rock festival.
To Hellion and Back features a collection of fan-favorites, hard-to-find recordings, and previously unreleased tracks. Among the collection are also two songs that were produced by Ronnie James Dio at the legendary Sound City recording studio.
Hellion has changed up its lineup a few times over the past 30 years, however the current group includes a powerhouse of musicians, including vocalist Boleyn, drummer Simon Wright (AC/DC, QUEENSRŸCHE, Dio, Dio Disciples), keyboardist Scott Warren (Dio, Heaven & Hell), Swedish import bassist Bjorn Englen (Yngwie Malmsteen, Dio Disciples), and up-and-coming lead guitarist Maxxxwell Carlisle.
Not only is Boleyn back at the helm, but so is the band’s former producer and legendary British studio icon Ken Scott. A top producer at Abbey Road Studios, Scott is also acknowledged as one of the five principal engineers for The Beatles.
Scott has engineered countless classic works, including George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass, as well as Elton John’s Madman Across the Water, Honky Chateau and Don't Shoot Me I'm Only The Piano Player. Other Scott credits include gold and platinum albums by Supertramp, David Bowie, Missing Persons, Kansas, and more.
"Over the years, the musicians have changed,” says Scott about Hellion. “The one musician that has always been the same is Ann. So once again, it's new musicians. The one constant thing about Hellion is Ann, and her incredible voice."
When asked about the comparison between working with David Bowie and Ann Boleyn, Scott says, "Working with Bowie or working with Ann of Hellion, you've got sheer talent.”
"She's tried to stay true to that heaviness and a certain darkness” adds drummer, Simon Wright. “She's sticking to the same formula, just different musicians."
Hellion will tour all over Europe and the UK in 2014 and are expected to appear at a number of major festivals.
About To Hellion and Back:
The cover artwork was designed by Italian artist Gaetano Di Falco and inspired by the photography of P.G. Brunelli.
2. Driving Hard
3. Don’t Take No For An Answer
4. Break The Spell
5. Up From The Depths
6. Run For Your Life
7. Get Ready
8. Witching Hour
9. Screams In The Night
10. Upside Down Guitar Solo/
11. The Hand
12. Bad Attitude
13. Tower Of Air
3. The Evil One
5. The Black Book
6. Living In Hell
8. Demon Attack
9. Resurrection/Will Not Go Quietly
10. Shit (Is Gonna Hit The Fan)
11. Dead and Gone
12. Dream Deceiver
13. Hell Has No Fury
To Hellion and Back will be available through The Omega Order for pre-order.
To stay up to date on local SoCal music & more, follow me at @PJ_LaBella on Twitter.