Unleashed From The Vaults – Hittman Retrospective:
NY metal band HITTMAN remain somewhat of a forgotten anomaly when it comes to 80’s metal and yet their debut album, the self titled Hittman, is a stone-cold classic of the era!
Reminiscent of Crimson Glory, Dokken, Exciter and Queensryche, these guys excelled at the kind of melodic power metal that would have sent their career stratospheric had it emerged just a few years prior. Instead, thrash had taken hold and Hittman found themselves rudely passed by – despite garnering praise for their outstanding demo Metal Sport in 1985 – which left Hittman in a state of relative obscurity.
Sure, Hittman weren’t delivering anything particularly groundbreaking but they were bloody good at what they did and the uptempo one-two of openers “Metal Sport” and “Dead On Arrival” still deliver a knock-out blow!
Featuring nine tracks of pure melodic fury that perfectly combined the melodies of European metal with the sheer power of their American counterparts, Hittman’s debut is essential for fans of 80’s metal and if this unsung classic has passed you by, then you’ll be cock-a-hoop to hear that Hittman will be re-issued – via No Remorse Records – on October 31, 2017, just in time to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Hittman‘s original release back in 1988.
Also included as bonus material, will be Hittman’s original 1985 demo, Metal Sport, remixed and remastered faithfully to the original, making this the first time it will have been released officially in the digital medium. A real treat for fans who have most likely only heard Metal Sport as a copied cassette, this widely traded, often duplicated, underground classic will finally be available in the best shape of its life!
The release will boast cleaner, more vivid re-imagined cover art (yet still 100% faithful to the original) and will be accompanied by a generous booklet of 24 pages containing never seen photos, articles and other anecdotes, as well as liner notes by the underground press’ first real champion of the band; Kerrang and Metal Forces journalist Dave Reynolds.
What Does The Future Hold For Hittman?
Hittman are working on new material for a 2018 album, slated for official release at the the Keep It True Festival in Lauda-Königshofen, Germany, where the band will perform its official reunion show.
Including all 4 surviving original members: Dirk Kennedy (vocals), Jim Bacchi (pka Bachi – guitars), Chuck Khoury (pka Kory – drums) and John Inglima (pka Kristen – guitars). Bassist Mike Buccellato (pka Buccell) passed away tragically in 2013 and the band, still a tight knit family, decided to re-unite, partially to pay tribute to his honor, but also to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the release of Hittman.
The album (and demo), still coveted by many fans of traditional, classic and power metal, has been kept alive by unofficial bootlegs, and via social media, and the band decided now was time to do an official re-release and present the best possible result.
It’s about time too, as this lost 80’s milestone deserves to be revered as something particularly special!
Other albums covered in our Unleashed From The Vaults Series: