DISCOVER | The Hellfreaks

Four albums deep with a fifth on its way, The Hellfreaks from Budapest have been in existence for almost a decade and I am just discovering them.

The Hellfreaks are Zsuzsa “Shakey Sue” Radnóti on vocals, József “Jozzy” Takács on guitar, Gabi Domján on bass, and Béla Budai on drums and they quad have fully seized metal, alternative, post-hardcore, and punk to create their sound.

By god, what a sound it is.

I am reminded of Shakespeare’s line in A Midsummer Night’s Dream that Helena says about Hermia, “though she be but little she is fierce”.

And that’s what I think when I hear Shakey Sue’s vocals: FIERCE.

Her vocals are savage with guttural bellows, growls, screams plus she has ferocious clean vocals.

The band partners with her relentless vocal talent with their own dangerous prowess. Jozzy and Gabi play their guitar and bass at breakneck speeds and to be honest, I’m surprised the drums even still stand after Béla’s assault on them.

From their upcoming fifth album, Pitch Black Sunset, due out on Napalm Records on April 14th, the band says this,

Since our last album, our world around us has turned much darker than what we ever expected. Covid, war, inflation. Enough reasons for introspection to find out if there is any light left in us. An excursion between the best and worst parts in us. 

Pitch Black Sunset is about how these contraries interfere with each other: the past and the future, peace and chaos, eastern and western, life and death. This album invites you to a car ride straight into the canyon between these opposites. Does it end in a car crash? Sometimes. But we found beauty in it.

From the nine track album, the band has released three singles so far.

Of “Hit Me Where it Hurts”, the band says,

‘Hit Me Where It Hurts’ is about hope and despair. Hope is able to move mountains. But what if the desired dream stays a dream? Then hope turns to prison. Intoxicated by a desire that never comes true, we reach the dead end, where the brain clearly sees the way out, but our heart won’t let us make the necessary steps. All that’s left is suffering.

This song is an invocation for the metaphorical punch to eliminate the last piece of false hope, the real culprit in such a situation.

On their latest single “Chaos”, the band says

As we already revealed about our upcoming album, Pitch Black Sunset is like a wild car chase which ends with you plunging straight into a canyon! Our new single ‘Chaos’ is about putting the pedal to the metal and not regretting it.

It’s our own anthem about breaking free from daily repression and standing up for oneself. It embodies the moment of taking control of a difficult situation and not allowing yourself to be a victim anymore and highlights the belief that true peace and clarity can come from a place of disorder. So sit back, raise your fists and let it all go … because ‘Chaos’ is on the way!

Watch “Old Tomorrow” the first single from Pitch Black Sunset

Vocal one take of “Old Tomorrow”

Pre-order Pitch Black Sunset HERE.

Pitch Black Sunset Tracklisting:
Old Tomorrows
Hit Me Where It Hurts
Weeping Willow
Body Bag
Rootless Soul Riot

Photo: Dávid Bodná