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Black Moth's second album opens with a riff that actually, genuinely, truthfully appeared on a Danny Dyer programme about Britain's 'ardest 'ard-nuts and actually, genuinely, truthfully has an ASBO for hurting people and their ears. Their first album had some big riffs, but this one is the biggest. The song in question is called 'Tumbleweave'. Finding a name good enough to match that riff is arguable the band's greatest achievement to date... Although Condemned To Hope peaks at this song, the rest of the album is is also pretty 'ard and an all round improvement on their first outing, The Killing Jar.

'Set Yourself Alight' sees the band veer ever so slightly from the stoner rock formula and adopt some Deftones esque riffing. They veer ever so slightly even further off course on 'Looner', which starts off sounding uncannily like Blood Red Shoes, whilst the riffing demonstrates relative levels of restraint and maturity. These are refreshing changes when you consider that the main downside to The Killing Jar was that very quickly began to sound relentlessly similar.

Frontwoman Harriet Bevan has certainly taken greater care when it comes to songwriting this time around, as have the band from a musical perspective. Each song feels complete and well thought out. 'The Undead King Of Rock And Roll' is a perfect mix of classic rock songwriting and metal brutality, whilst 'Red Ink' boasts almost delicate guitar and some welcome tempo changes.

The one place where Black Moth still fall short though, is in terms of grooves. Where Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats, who they supported earlier this year, merge heavy and groovy to mesmerising effect, Black Moth still rely too much on the heavy side of things. Creating crushingly heavy music that gets the hips moving is what takes rock music of this kind to the next level. All that being said, 'The Last Maze' hints that the grooves are lurking there somewhere.

Black Moth are a young band who are improving fast and although they've got a lot of catching up to do with some of their contemporaries, the potential is there and Condemned To Hope is one of the better heavy British records of 2014.

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