(Review by Patrick De Sloover)

Hëssler released already an EP ‘Bad Blood’ in 2011, and this time they aim for a first full length album, which is still an independent release. The band teamed up with producer Chuck Macak and entered the Electrowerks Music Studios to fulfill this task. I received their package but there was no infosheet attached, so I can’t give you much more background information.

The CD is packed in a kind of digipack, and the pictures of the band drew my attention immediately. It’s a return to the good old 80’s with leather jackets, make up and additional clothing that reminds me of bands like Ratt, Skid Row among others. What pleased me even more were the pictures of female vocalist Lariyah Daniels who looks like a pure rock chick! She was originally born in Poland, but nowadays, she lives in Chicago and besides singing in a band, she’s also a model, actress, dancer and of course a performer.

The Windy City rockers open their album with the track ‘Waste Away’, which is obviously a very good opener. It has all the necessary ingredients to rock you all the way. The vocals of bombshell Lariyah rock like hell and even when she’s into the higher regions, she stands tall. This bands seems to carry out a message of rock meets metal, added with all known characteristics of the good old days. So horns up for the sex and drugs, let’s party all night! The next song ‘Rising Sign’ is sung totally different, as she’s not going that high, but indicates that this lady has a powerful voice as well. Check out You Tube as there are many live video clips of this band, so you will get an idea what they are capable off.

‘Gone Away’ is a ballad and again Lariyah is bringing it with a lot of passion and dedication! The guitar players of the band are Igz Kincaid and Frankie Snakes Sripada, and both deliver a great job, although not every track on this album has the same impact as opener ‘Waste Away’. Drummer Marcus Lee and bass player Erik Michael are the rhythm section of the band and all together they created 10 nice songs, with some can be described as milestones for the band, but despite all good efforts, there are a few fillers as well.

Some have chorus lines with a lot of backing vocals and that will do the job at live gigs, but while listening to this album, it’s sometimes a little bit too much! I personally prefer the guitar driven tracks like ‘Waste Away’, ‘Taste The Lips’ and closing track ‘Hate Me, Leave Me’, and I would like to hear that the band will continue this path. If you compare the mentioned tracks with ‘Gone Away’ and ‘Million Lights Above’, you will notice that the pace slows down too much to keep on attracting the attention of the listener.

I guess that Hëssler is a pure live band, and from the live footage that I saw on You Tube, I’m sure that they are capable to tear down the roof of every place where they perform. Regrettable, this does not apply to the lone listener. http://www.hesslerchicago.com/

My rating: 77 / 100


95+ : Outstanding, high valued albums & classic ones… a direct purchase is advisable !


Between 90 and 95: Surpasses the style of music, must be heard/ordered by every Metal fan


Between 80 and 89: Good in its own genre, recommended for those hooked on it


Between 70 and 89: Decent but better to take a preview first


Between 60 and 69: Rather moderate


Between 50 and 59: Bad, substandard