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Live Review: HellYeah, Life Pilot

27 August 2015 | 4:32 pm | Jonty Czuchwicki

"In a way HellYeah are all about saying 'fuck you' to elitism and embracing brutality."

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HellYeah made a relatively triumphant return to Adelaide after five years away, the time between spent reorganising after the departure of guitarist Greg Tribbett and bassist Bob Kakaha. The new HellYeah line-up features Christian Brady on guitar and Kyle Sanders on bass. That's right, Troy Sanders' brother is playing in HellYeah! Founding member and guitarist Tom Maxwell had expressed a lack of cohesion from the previous members, to the point where he himself considered leaving the band. Consequently the latest HellYeah record, Blood For Blood, was written entirely by Chad Gray, Vinnie Paul and Tom Maxwell alone. 

One had to feel sorry for local Adelaide openers Life Pilot as they set up their equipment, their drum kit and amps paling in comparison to the wall of amplifiers and enormous drum riser sitting behind them, but despite this the band made a considerable dent in the woodwork with their abrasive and frenetic hardcore punk sound. Life Pilot look and sound very similar to The Dillinger Escape Plan on stage. This is of course a compliment, as not many bands are able to mirror that band's sound effectively. Certainly a band to look out for.

HellYeah took the stage with a no-fucks-given approach. One minute they were walking on stage and seconds later they'd ripped into their first song. If anything is sure it's that HellYeah are fucking loud — perhaps one of the loudest bands around. No surprise given drummer Vinnie Paul's history, but even in comparison to bands like Lamb Of God or Boris, HellYeah are still really goddamn loud. It's when you see them in the flesh that their vices become their virtues. The over-the-top image translates directly into the true ferocity of their sound, whether it be the thunderous chugging of Maxwell, Brady's solos or Gray's blistering vocal onslaught. Even the slower ballad-type songs that certainly divide some metal-heads from HellYeah fans have much more context in a live setting. In a way HellYeah are all about saying 'fuck you' to elitism and embracing brutality.