Erik Hinds — Reign in Blood
(Solponticello SP-016, 2005, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2006-05-01
On the first few plays through, I didn’t even realize what I was listening to, but I was certainly enjoying it at its face value. Here Hinds plays solo h’arpeggione, an acoustic stringed instrument with a range comparable to a cello, with 12 sympathetic strings, which is plucked, strummed, fingerpicked, bowed, and whacked as a percussion instrument; the sound is positively unique, and Hinds plays this thing masterfully. What I didn’t realize until somewhere around the fifth spin (and a quick glance at the promo sheet) is that he’s actually covering – albeit instrumentally – Reign in Blood, the Slayer album! You don’t get the morbidly violent lyrics, or the thrashing chugging guitars and screaming demented solos, but you do get all the speed, aggression, and precision, delivered brilliantly on an acoustic instrument. Hinds’ performance takes some liberties in arranging the material to be suitable for his instrument (mostly in tempo and dynamics), but the net result is positively brilliant and respectful of the original. Every piece here – “Altar of Sacrifice,” “Epidemic,” “Angel of Death,” and all the rest – are exceptionally well defined performances that fully interpret the underlying compositional structures and highlights of the originals.
Related artist(s): Erik Hinds (Killick)
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