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The Nova Hawks: Redemption
The Nova Hawks - Redemption Album Art

The Nova Hawks: Redemption

(Melodic) Hard Rock
3.5/5.0

Hailing from The Midlands of England, The Nova Hawks is the songwriting duo of vocalist Heather Leoni and guitarist Rex Roulette. Drawing influences from British rock, Indie and alternative music, blues, and Gospel roots, the duet deliver their debut long-player, Redemption for the Frontiers Music label.

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The Nova Hawks

I suppose every several years to a decade another White Stripes must appear. Perhaps that's not a fair comparison for The Nova Hawks, but that was my musical mind went to first. Yet there are some similarities. One specifically is The Nova Hawks minimalist approach to song craftsmanship. Largely, across Redemption the songs consist of Ms Leoni's voice over Roulettes guitar, mostly a wall a riffage with shots of guitar leads. You can add a rhythm section, but I'm not sure if that is real or synthetically generated. My difficulty was finding the blues and Gospel references in their music. It took a few spins to find them.



If you consider a soulful tone something seminal to both blues or traditional Gospel, then Ms Leoni has voice has that timbre. Her voice is quite deliberate and passionate throughout. You'll Roulette using his guitar in a bottleneck slide style within songs such as Voodoo and Redemption. With Dusty Heart, you'll find a curious blend of both blues and American Western music, meaning think more Texas tumbleweed and not Nashville pomp. But the better blues groove appears more prominently, via acoustic guitar, within Love Games and Run Wild, which features some fine Hammond organ. Conversely, and perhaps breaking with their musical motif, is Pills which simply reminded of an up tempo rock song yet the blues guitar rising within. While listening through, I thought I heard only riffage but, to my surprise, fine guitar solos arrive within Pills, Love Games, Witxh (spelling?) and Locked Inside. I still haven't found the Gospel roots, if there is anything of traditional Christian Gospel music within. (Perhaps with the Hammond addition?)

All said, The Nova Hawks' Redemption is an interesting and surprising listen, their blues influenced Indie rock may find some traditional melodic hard rock fans thinking outside their genre boxes. Check out the music videos, explore for yourself, and support the band.




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The Bottom Line

All said, The Nova Hawks' Redemption is an interesting and surprising listen, their blues influenced Indie rock may find some traditional melodic hard rock fans thinking outside their genre boxes.

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