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PIMMIT HILLS - "Heathens & Prophets" EP

Posted on the 13 November 2020 by Ripplemusic
PIMMIT HILLS It has been a year and a half since the news of the Outer Beltway's Virginia-based King Giant abdicating their Appalachian-influenced throne of Southern Metal. It was at that point in time we learned how four of the band's five members had adopted a new name and would operate as PIMMIT HILLS henceforth. Unmistakably, the source of this quartet's audio superpowers would be familiarity and their shared roots as David Hammerly (vocals), Todd Ingram (guitar), Keith Brooks (drums), and Floyd Lee Walters III (bass) continued their work together. Now, if there was a Mission Statement for this new rock and roll lessee, it would not be far removed from one they had seemed to have adopted previously, the tenets of which I would imagine as the following:

1. Play uniquely, develop your own stylistic musical character... and, with such, the utter importance of No.2 is paramount.

2. Rock the masses without compromise, do so wherever they may be... live venue, backyard party, festival, ocean faring cruise ship, wherever... and certainly upon any recorded effort.

It is exactly that which brings us all here today, the latter item just mentioned arrived this September in the form of the 4-song "Heathens & Prophets" EP. Recorded at Magpie Cage Studios in Baltimore, MD. and produced by Keith Brooks and Todd Ingram. Mixed by J. Robbins, he also contributes keyboards to three tracks from the EP, including the monstrous introductory number.

"Baby Blue Eyes" is a smoldering tour de force of heavy rock but here, it first gets fuel injected with some high octane, flame throwing funk. Once the groove is laid open, our players get in the pocket and pull us right in along with them using one hell of an infectious hook enriched riff. When David Hammerly commandeers the mic, any listener here remotely aware of King Giant will briefly flashback. It's unavoidable due to David's rather distinct, raspy croon but before you know it, you're back with "Baby Blue Eyes" and there is much to enjoy. The slow turning foray into heaving, ad hoc and psyche-inflected passages amid searing, fuzz encased tones allows for some downright feverish jamming.

After nearly eight minutes of dark, winding passages and fluid alterations in the intensities at which they arrive, the first track subsides. Catch a breather as quick as you can for yet another impressive composition comes in the contents of "Ginger". Coming in with feedback at first, it builds an escalating hum in which embedded drums pulse to life. The swampy tones of muscular guitars break in about the half-minute mark and before long, the tale of a deceitfully homicidal lass is narrated. At exactly the halfway point of the song things are dialed back to reveal another free-for-all of sweltering playing and interactive trade-offs between these players. And what about that mind warping, hazy day of judgment established in the effect enriched final minute of the song?

The third song, and third to feature the keyboards of J. Robbins, I have found "Lost River" to be a personal favorite. It will possibly come as no big surprise this number is perhaps the closest PIMMIT HILLS come to their prior aural persona. Backwoods-y and bluesy as all get out at first, these passages become offset with heaving discharges of a more aggressive quality. All in all, each musician get their time to drive things home, each accentuating one another in the most thorough of ways.

The fourth and final song, "Beautiful Sadness", is another slow tempo, yet slightly different feeling song. The music itself is a slightly more varied meld of softer tones and melodic nuances, but with periodic points of accelerated performance. There's a swagger here, one that's subtle, yet able to stun the listener repeatedly. It comes through in an attitude within this music, bolstered by the nearly decade-and-a-half these four musicians have spent together, previously as King Giant and now going forward as PIMMIT HILLS.

I for one am quite glad we have Keith Brooks, David Hammerly, Floyd Lee Walters III, and Todd Ingram taking things into the future. It must be mentioned the latter band member there, guitarist Todd Ingram, is also a member of Serpents Of Secrecy with musicians from Foghound, Borracho, Sixty Watt Shaman, Zekiah, and Crawler. They have just released their full-length debut, "Ave Vindicta", in tribute to their fallen bandmate, the fan revered Reverend Jim Forrester, and it is a heavy rock wonder indeed.

- Pat "Riot" Whitaker

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