Hercules Morse

Formed in 2014 in Southampton, Hercules Morse are a quartet consisting of main singer / songwriter and guitarist Steve George, Paul Shott bass, Harry Gardner lead guitar and on drums the rather grandly named Guillaume Redonnet-Brown, or ‘Gizmo’ to his mates. They released their debut EP “Edge of Life” back in December 2015 to a host of good reviews and “Equine Size Comparison”, their new five tracker looks like it will follow in its footsteps. The music mines a similar musical territory to Queens of the Stone Age and the Foo Fighters with pounding drums, growly bass, buzzy, riffing guitars overlaid with surprisingly melodic vocals, instead of the usual shouty style adopted by most bands of this ilk. Apparently main man Steve George has a comedic alter ego called Smeghead Steve, whose balmy ramblings can be found on the internet, but we won’t get into that here as Hercules Morse channels the serious side of his psyche.

Hercules Morse

First track, “Asleep at the Wheel” kicks off proceedings with a choppy rhythm and a catchy guitar riff before the singer laments on how the he is cruising through life on autopilot as the world is passing him by over a throbbing beat. To break up any familiarity that might creep in during the verse and chorus a nice key change into the solo keeps you on your toes before the opening riff returns to lead the band into the final chorus. After a couple of spins the song creeps into your brain and sticks there, a good start. “The Boss” is another overt rocker that plows a similar groove to the opener, while Steve vents his spleen at a shitty, overbearing employer, something most of us can empathize with. For “Nobody’s Fool” the band dials down the aggression a tad, for a mellower, melodic tale of lost love and betrayal. “Do it Right” ups the tempo again for a short and concise, (two and a half minutes) treatise on living your life in the correct way as you only have one crack at it. The middle section gives drummer Gizmo a chance to rattle around the tubs and lead guitarist Harry to exercise his foot on the wah-wah pedal. The final track, “Chemical Lullabies”, could well be George’s philosophy on life, don’t take everything too seriously as there is nothing we can do about it, so neck another beer, I’ll drink to that. Musically the song drives along nicely with more wah-wah in the solo and choppy link riffs leading into the choruses, a pretty good closing shot.

All in all not a bad CD, some of their reviews lump them into a “Stoner Rock” bag but I can’t see it myself, their arrangements, knack of writing a good hook and agile interplay place them in a more a classic rock style, the Foo Fighters comparisons are closer sans Dave Grohls gruff bark. For a taster try their humorous video shot around Southampton for “Asleep at the Wheel” on Youtube

Hercules Morse

Track List
Asleep at the Wheel
The Boss
Nobody’s Fool
Do it Right
Chemical Lullabies


Words by John Cherry.

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