Huntress – Starbound Beast album Review


Track 1 – Enter the Exosphere
At 1:26, it is clearly obvious this song is going to be the introduction to the entire album, the one that sets the mood and it does just that. There is a beautiful darkness about it; it sounds spiritual almost when Jill Janus’s beautiful vocals overlay the dark effects and guitars. The intro soon builds up into a thundering power fuelled with melodic guitars a power-thirsty ‘in your face’ feeling that pulls you in to what the band Huntress are about to show you.
Rating 8/10

Track 2 – Blood Sisters
Blood Sisters kicks in immediately with a slow melodic feel to it yet still maintaining that heavy vibe. When Jill Janus comes in, the mood completely changes. If you have heard anything from Huntress before from their Spell Eater album you will have noticed that the vocals have become smoother until it gets to the chorus and then out pop the fearsome growls that send shivers down your spine. The overall mood in this track is definitely somewhat dark and full of fire, the sort of fire that you only get when listened to Huntress.
Rating 8/10

Track 3 – I Want to Fuck You to Death
“What song are you listening to?” “I want to fuck you to death.” – This is a song that’s going to cause some confusion to the people who haven’t exactly heard of Huntress before. Following up from the track name, Huntress have somehow made this a seductive, sexy track that makes you want to rip the clothes off of the person next to you with the dirty guitars holding a fantastically powerful yet simple riff, Janus’s vocals drawing you in with her dark vocal ability and the drums and bass holding the track together with a powerful wall of sound. Definitely one of the more controversial songs on the album simply due to the lyrical content and track name, can’t please the authorities but you can please the fans with this outstanding track! (Co-Written by Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead)
Rating 9/10

Track 4 – Destroy Your Life
Destroy Your Life comes in with a whole new feel to it in terms of guitar playing throughout the intro however it doesn’t take long for the aggression to come seeping back through your earphones. The track itself seems to definitely follow a more aggressive path in terms of the previous tracks on the album however when the track breaks down you get smacked in the face by this powerful yet beautiful solo that leads then back into the end of the track which has a different feel to it in general due to the changing of riffs and vocal melodies but it works so well, the track alone progressively got better and better throughout.
Rating 8/10

Track 5 – Starbound Beast
The second this track starts, you noticed a complete and utter change in the books in terms of the musical performance and the vocals. This track seems to focus more on the power rather than throwing everything out in an aggressive fast frenzy. Janus’s vocals seem to be less harsh than the rest of the album, holding more of the melody in a cleaner fashion. The track may not be as fast and aggressive as the previous but it’s still mighty powerful. One thing on this track, shortly after the solo, the track quickly becomes darker than before; it overwhelms you in the best way possible.
Rating 9/10

Track 6 – Zenith
Straight back in there, Zenith comes in with almighty power, it is fuelled with absolute fury and there is such an aggressive passion in the track however you take a look at the lyrical content and it is pure poetry, however, it is beautiful and dark. It a lot more simplistic musically but it still gives off this dark atmospheric feeling that makes the beautiful track Zenith!
Rating 9/10

Track 7 – Oracle
Oracle starts with such a thunderous wall of sound, musically it darkens yet it simplifies itself to underlay Janus’s vocals. It may have slowed down a tiny bit but it still creates a lot of power and almost creates an anthem in the chorus, an anthem of the darkness. It may not be the strongest track on the record but it is still fantastic, expressive and continues to hold the power and fire that Huntress create in their music.
Rating 6/10

Track 8 – Receiver
Throughout the entire track, it proves itself to possibly be the best on the album itself, it still holds that feel Huntress like to give to you but it also has a way of coming across more powerful in terms of giving out a message. Janus’s vocals on this track prove that they are stronger than ever and they will only continue in that direction. It is a mighty track with a ‘smack in the face’ effect, making you need more and more of the great Huntress!
Rating 8/10

Track 9 – Spectra Spectral
Definitely a more progressed track in terms of the music, there seems to be more melody held in this track than the previous. It is a tight track that blends together brilliantly. ‘Spectra Spectral’ Janus bellows out, it makes you want to chant those exact words, this track in general seems to have a hypnotizing feel to it, it seems to bring out a lot of the spirituality that Huntress emphasis in their music. Do you ever come across songs that sometimes makes you feel like you can do something with your life? The sort of songs that makes you feel motivated into doing what you want? This is one of those tracks.
Rating 10/10

Track 10 – Alpha Tauri
Whilst the rest of the tracks on this album show the influence of 80’s heavy metal, Alpha Tauri for me personally is the track that gives this off more so. What makes this track stand out though is how the drums deliver more the accompaniment to the vocals as opposed to the usual guitars. It is a brilliantly structured track but also a cleverly structured too. It keeps the listener intrigued especially as it leads up to the first guitar solo. It starts beautifully and atmospheric, it gives the track a gentle aura to it as Janus overlays her vocals but gently, softly until it jumps back into the heavy stuff, Janus then projects her vocals to new levels jumping in with the second solo, the solo to end the track, a solo that captures everything perfectly in Alpha Tauri.
Rating 10/10

Track 11 – Running Wild
Running Wild is a Judas Priest cover song, it is brilliantly portrayed however Janus’s vocals come out and I can’t help but compare to more of a Paul Di’Anno ‘Killers’ era feel as opposed to Rob Halford. Now we all know when you do a cover, the vocalist isn’t going to imitate the original they always add their own style to it and I think Janus has done it superbly, she proves that women can have some god damn powerful vocal chords in heavy metal too! A brilliant cover.

Overall –
The album in itself keeps it’s Huntress feel, however, they have developed from Spell Eater and come out with this brilliant album. It isn’t a 100% consistent album, saying that it is rare to find an album that can be that consistent but what I like about it is that they have tried and you can feel their heart and soul have gone into the creation of Starbound Beast.
It is fast, furious, heavy and just plain good metal but it keeps the point of Huntress in there too, they incorporate the concept so clearly and the way it is delivered to you as a listener is incredible.
Another point to mention however is the artwork for this album, I do love album artwork, it’s what draws me to listening to some music and this is a beautiful cover indeed.
Rating 8/10


About Jessica Howkins
Music Journalism and Broadcasting graduate, Editor-In-Chief for Distorted Sound Magazine and contributor for various publications.

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