The Joy Formidable – ‘Hitch’ Review

Posted: by Sean Gonzalez

words by Jim Kirwan

The Joy Formidable are back with their new album Hitch, which sees the group keeping their core sound, but adding in a mixture of romance and arousal. This is the Welsh trio’s follow-up to 2013’s Wolf’s Law, and it’s great to hear they haven’t strayed from their bread and butter: heavy guitars.

The latest single off the album, “The Last Thing On My Mind” is stuck-in-your-head catchy, and offers a flavor reminiscent of The Kills. The guitar effects give this song a sort of maddening rhythm (maddening in a good way, of course) that stick around in your head for the rest of the night. “It’s Started” consists of a fabulous rapid-fire drum intro that leads into steady guitar work, which almost makes you wonder why this wasn’t the opening track of the album.

The group also isn’t afraid to keep the songs rolling, especially evident in the nearly 7-minute-long “Running Hands With The Night.” Yet they manage to do a good job of keeping the music interesting with change in tempos and intricate guitar work. Even the slightly drawn out “Underneath the Petal” gets an added boost with a bit of piano worked into it, and the slower speed eventually increases in intensity to reach a glorious climax.

The Joy Formidable have made an album they should be proud of. While it may not be as good as 2011’s The Big Roar, the group stayed true to their sound while showing lyrical growth—and the end result is a passable record. The lyrics are dripping with meaning, while the band keep their trademark guitar assault going strong throughout the album. Hitch is certainly worth checking out, if only for the allure of romance and heavy guitars.

Score: 5/10