Although hAND can be loosely described as a Prog band, when you peel back the aural layers, you’ll find a definitive edge that sets the band firmly apart from its contemporary counterparts. Progressive and heavy, yet accessible, hAND have unearthed a sound that is innovative and engrossing. They call to mind the thoughtful webby depths of Opeth, meshed with the proggy groove of Amplifier and the gothic guile of Paradise Lost. Acutely marrying carefully formed visceral guitar parts, dynamic drums, and alluring vocals, hAND have a strong focus and a clear vision of what they want to produce.
Originally formed back in 2004, the band come at you from Sussex. Right from their early years, which saw hAND unleash their first EP Chapters, to the band’s next EP Shadow: Word Pain, which landed them a record deal with Copro Records, to the foursome’s debut album Deadroom Journal, each release and record has progressed in its sheer song-writing quality and production. The progsters worked with producer Nick Hemingway (Isor, Cancer, Desecration) @ Philia Studios for Deadroom Journal, and the album went on to secure lofty praise with Dead Earnest, who dubbed the release: “Totally groundbreaking in such a genre”. Off the back of the album, hAND signed to Femme Metal Records and began to play shows throughout the whole of the UK, as well as racking up prominent festival appearances. In 2010, the progressive crew headed back to the studio to record their sophomore album Breathing, with Nick Hemingway again at the helm. Released in June 2011 via Femme Metal Records and Brutal Elite Records, the album picked up even greater acclaim than their debut album. In the summer of 2011, long time drummer Cris Nelson left the band. He was replaced by Dan Thomas, and at the same time synth player Tom Johnstone joined as a full time member. Taking a hiatus from playing live in 2013, hAND solely focused on writing their next album and perfecting their revitalised eclectic sound.
This year, the quartet hit the studio once more with long term collaborator and producer Nick Hemmingway to lay down their third album Kintsugi. Comprised of hypnotic and supremely orchestrated guitar riffs and crashing drums with pulsing rhythms, Kintsugi is primed to rattle your ear drums and will surely pull you in. The album will be widely supported with extensive touring and is released in two formats: the regular CD/digital download version and the Gold Edition. The Gold Edition is more than just the same album with a couple of bonus tracks; whilst it does contain some of the same songs, it is approached in a very different way in terms of production and feel. The approach taken differs in the production style – a more natural, dynamic and even old-school take, designed to contrast with the heavier, more driving production employed on the ‘regular’ Kintsugi. The Gold Edition will also be available on vinyl and in a special pre-order pack. Both versions of the record drop this November; look out as hAND are set to take the scene by storm.