“Horsefly Rocket” release their second album, “Break the Ceiling,” on February 24th, so not long now! Of course, if you are reading this any later than that date, then it is out on all major platforms!
Horsefly Rocket are:
Vocals: Kevin Holloway
Guitar: Michael Fassl
Bass: Mario Brodeßer
Drums: Jonas Wickenhauser
Keys: Tim Budavari
A bit of the back story, Kevin Holloway – then the singer of a band composed mainly of US military contractors stationed in Mannheim – was recommended to a group next door. The contracts were close to being over, and most of his current bandmates were preparing to move back home, leaving the 20-year-old singer anxious for a new project. His skills as a vocalist and his uncompromising “Rock n’ Roll” lifestyle impressed the band one door down, so he moved in. This momentum was short-lived, though, as Holloway had already made a commitment to leave in early 2013 and study music on the West Coast of America. Late in 2015, Holloway had finished with his studies in the US, returned to Mannheim, and stepped back into his old role as singer for Horsefly. Meanwhile, the band began looking for a producer and studio for its debut album. The self-titled debut album was released on June 28th, 2018 on the band’s own label, “Bug Valley Records,” and was distributed by Alive AG. The single “Never Again” received about a hundred radio plays in Germany. In 2019, the second single, “Devil’s Playground,” appeared on the sampler of Classic Rock magazine’s 2019 UK/USA June/July issue. In 2021, the band went into the studio to record their second studio album. They had already played a lot of shows and done very well at festivals.
And here it is!
I have placed a couple of official videos below for “Cat Calls” and “Never Again.” For anyone dipping in, “Cat Calls” is a little belter! It drives along in southern style, with ZZ Top sitting in the back seat! This is my personal favourite, it’s very commercial and cool.
The album kicks off with a no nonsense rocker called “Feed My Soul” that kicks off the action.
“Break the Ceiling” is up next, a track with some grungy sentiment, a bit slower, and with a power drum sound doing the business.
“Changing the Season,” has some great guitar work; it would be a terrific live track.
“Hold On” is great fun; it has that swagger about it. I love the vocals on this one. This one has that melodic, commercial sound that the band does so well.
“The Game” changes direction, maybe one of the weaker tracks on the album, a little lacking in the hooks that their successful tracks have.
“Red Moon” is more sombre, but lyrically menacing and moves toward a power chorus. It is one of those solid album tracks.
“Times of Trouble” is a ballad, the guitars and vocals resonate well with some blues influences. I actually really liked the song, lyrically, it is dreamy, and the sound is mature.
“Poison” – okay, my second favourite on the album. Strong guitar riffs, plenty of confidence in the drums, a chorus hook that you remember. Yes, great work here, lads!
And last up is the closer, “The Great Forsaker.” It closes the album on a high, with the keys of Tim Budavari being worth a note here.
So at its best, this is a confident album; it has some great southern boogie, a touch of grunge, and some memorable chorus hooks.It is part of a bigger picture of a revival of German rock. We spoke to Ben Juelg of “April Art” recently, and there is some great rock music coming out of Germany at the moment.
By Lorraine Foley
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