After a media frenzy talking about the witchcraft frontwoman, Jill Janus, with equally interesting photoshoots supporting the mystique, Starbound Beast was released with little else talked about than the obvious PR exercise that was "I Want To F**K You To Death", co-written by Motorheads Lemmy. With retrospection, this track is the albums commercial offering and I would say weakest in terms of content.
Trying to describe the Huntress sound is a complex animal, and everytime I try I resort to hybrid mixes of classic bands and abstract thinking. My final summation based on this album is that Mastadon and Motorhead got really drunk one night and had a love child, that child was then taken by the authorities and given into the fostercare of Steve Harris and Bonnie Tyler. Which on face value sounds like I don't like the sound, but I do, really I do.
Throughout the album there is an intensity that peaks but not often enough, there is reliance on melody that seems a little confused between being artistic and writing "radio songs", and there is a lyrical quality that is telling a story but never quite revealing the morale. I wish the album would have been chock full of tracks like 'Zenith' and 'Oracle', for me that is where the sound comes together and shows what Huntress can really be. There are better solo's, riffs and lyrics in other tracks, but if looking for a coherant "Huntress" then look no further.
If you like Iron Maidens bass lines, then listen to the guitars, if you are fed up with operatic female singers, then listen to Janus. It's good to hear something female fronted that actually has balls, I've not a fan of "growling women", but Janus does a good job of scaring the crap outta me.
I believe this is an evolutionary release from Huntress, I'm looking forward to their next album which should be a more rounded statement of who they are as a band. Huntress have the potential to be huge, really huge - it all hinges on providing that definitive "we are Huntress" album.