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Rap metallers Hed Planet Earth have recently released its newest and quite possibly best balanced record to date, as BLACKOUT takes the remnants of a dying genre and breathes in some much needed life. Containing 14 tracks of deep grooves and earth shaking beats, the inclusion of monstrous new guitarist Sonny Mayo successfully rounds out this California based outfit, giving the well-traveled Hed an edge over the Bizkit and Linkin Park in terms of sonic output. The soulfully metallic charge of the title track and "Fallen", as well as the undeniable lyrical flow of "Crazy Life" and the laid back groove of "Other Side" stand out here, but the entire album showcases a band comfortable in its own shoes and still able to give rap metal a last grasp chance at becoming something more than a flash in the pan.
- Mike SOS