Lynam – Halfway to Hell – EP Review

lynamcoversmLynam, Halfway to Hell, released 2013

 

The hardest part of writing a review is coming up with new and various ways to say this is great music. The rule around here is we only review CDs that we want to listen to… over and over again. Lynam’s seventh and latest release, Halfway to Hell, has been in heavy rotation at Maine Music News since it arrived in the mail because – you guessed it, it is great music.

Lynam needs to be a new addition to your hard rocking music collection. Lynam is heavy guitar, meaty vocals, and all around listenable, entertaining, energizing, and driving rock and roll. Lynam brings the familiar feel of the 80s sound and mixes it with head on rhythm and lyrics that are able to confront social issues without getting in the way of the music. This EP is just what we need as we ride out a rotten Northern winter – hot rock and roll.

Lynam showed up on the Maine Music News radar in 2013 after our interview with Jacob Bunton, lead singer on Adler’s Back from the Dead, the acclaimed 2012 release from GNR’s Steven Adler. We’ll connect you to that interview here. Lynam is made up of Bunton on vocals and guitar, fellow Adler member Lonny Paul on vocals and guitar, David Lynam on drums, and Mark Dzier on bass. Let’s get this started with “Cold,” their first video to be released from Halfway to Hell. You are going to like it immediately.

Track By Track:

#1 ~ Rise Up: Of course, I’m going to probably like any song with a lyric stating “get your fingers up,” and Lynam doesn’t soft pedal their sentiment nor do they beat us with their opinion, and I respect that. Lynam imparts a message while still leaving wiggle room for the listener’s perspective. This is a pounding, boots on the ground rhythm and fists in the air song.

#2 ~ Halfway to Hell: Loaded with the signature 80s rock sound, this song is full of devilish references – “you’re so cold I wonder if your horns they ever show” and the refusal to back down.

#3 ~ Dead Man’s Parade: Heavy, burning guitar and low, growling vocals start this song before it lightens up just a bit so we can enjoy the drums and guitar work spiced with bits of creepy monster vibe. Again, the message is clear – life is what you make it.

#4 ~ Cold: You’ve seen the video above. With a Billy Idol feel, this song is more British 80s than straight up heavy rock sound, and gives the listener a chance to ease up and groove while still enjoying a strong guitar and driving tone.

#5 ~ Store Bought Halo: This little gem calls it out – “It’s time we take it back from hangers on and souls of black. This shit gets deeper by the minute.” Short and sweet, this song is faster and more intense in vocals and guitars.

#6 ~ Wrong Side of the Grave: I know a few people on the wrong side of the grave, don’t you? Plunging in with a smoky scream, this is raw and scratchy and wonderful.

Only six songs deep, Halfway to Hell, never breaks from relentless, driven rock that carries the vintage 80s sound and combines it masterfully with more aggressive moments that add to the overall texture and power of the collection, never stepping too far but just far enough to push the music right through your speakers and into your face. Need a shot of adrenaline? Get Lynam in your play list.

About the author

Ann James Joles

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You’ll know her when you see her – Ann is probably the only person at a live show scribbling down notes and guarding a camera case. With a long time career in higher education behind her, she is more at home at a rock show with screaming fans than in an office.