If you’re from Palmerston North and haven’t been to a Hellborne gig, you’re too late and I pity you. You have missed out on one hell of an experience and you've missed out on witnessing Palmerston North’s fundamental swamp-metal bands and one of the most legendary in action. Though they are gone, their legacy lives on through this, their self titled and last album.
This third album shows a more mature Hellborne with a more unified sound, while still retaining its swamp-metal aesthetic. Never heard of swamp-metal? Picture the illegitimate offspring of dirty metal and hard rock and roll. The cohesion between the tracks defines them as an album and not just a collection of songs. It’s as though they stopped hating certain things and are just generally pissed off about everything equally. In saying that, there is still Hellborne’s signature anti-corporate sentiment.
Picking up the album the first thing you notice, after looking at the band logo and esoteric imagery, is the high production value of this album. If you were to find it at JB HIFI and were ignorant of the Palmerston North swamp-metal scene, you could easily mistake it for a big-budget commercial metal release. The fact that ‘Swamp King’ sounds like it could be early Rob Zombie will further convince you that Hellborne deserve their place as the kings of the Swamp.
Lest we forget. The king is dead. Long live the king.
Hellborne formed in August 2002 from other local bands including Turbostill, Sense_, 7.62 Short and The Hendersons.
They have been gigging around the North Island since November 2002 having played in Palmerston North, Wellington, Napier, New Plymouth, Gisborne and soon Auckland.
They released a self-financed CD 'Raping of Society' in July 2003 with seven original tracks and three remixes: two by Sense_ and one by Faker.