Album Review: Hats Off Gentlemen It’s Adequate – “When the Kill Code Fails” @itsadequate #MusicIsEverything

When I got an email that kicked off by saying “new Prog Rock and Electronica Artificial Intelligence themed album”, my initial reaction was something along the lines of “What on Earth is this?!”, before deciding I absolutely HAD to hear it! I listen to every song sent to me, but this was something that really intrigued me!

Malcolm Galloway photo by Emre Basala

“I Still Remember You” was the first song I’d ever heard by Hats Off Gentlemen It’s Adequate. What immediately struck me is how confident this band are in their delivery. Mixing ambient, prog rock, trance, classical and electronica is no mean feat, but here all of those genres are connected by a barely audible thread. It’s as if nature intended it to be this way all along.

I am all at once fascinated and compelled to hear more, so my ears journeyed on to the band’s upcoming album, “When the Kill Code Fails”, available now digitally, with a physical release planned for 2016.

From the catchy yet thought provoking title track; traversing through the perfectly sublime trio of “Broken Wave”, “Layers” and “Connections”; manoevering carefully around the sharp bend that is “Head in a Jar” and crashing headlong into “Link”, the first half of this album has me travelling along a road I never want to end.

Continuing into the remainder of the album, the next song, “Going Down”, is something I almost feel like I’ve heard before; it’s got that kind of nostalgic rock feel. The lyrics portray a frustrated soul who can’t get out of a vicious circle within life. I think we can all identify with that at certain points of our own lives.

When The Kill Code Fails cover

Occasionally, this album conjours up an image of what would be produced if Bright Eyes and Jean Michel Jarre got together in a studio, injected with some Jethro Tull (now wouldn’t that be something!) and punctuated by grunge style guitar playing. Not an unpleasant thought at all!

Proceeding via the afore-mentioned “I Still Remember You”; navigating the hopeful and beautiful message of “My Clockwork Heart”, complete with bluesy guitar; roving around with “Freerunning” – a very groovy instrumental with hints of Metal – for company; taking an emotional wander with the sounds of my favourite track from the album “Solace” coursing through my mind – I’m not ashamed to admit that I welled up when listening to this.

Coming onto the final part of the wonderful exploration that is “When the Kill Code Fails”, I feel myself going into orbit whilst listening to the electronica masterpiece that is “Glass Lithium”. Finally, I reach my destination – “Alive” (again, I dig those Blues guitars).

“When the Kill Code Fails” covers so much musical ground, and I’m seriously impressed. If I had anything critical to say at all, it would be minor things such as… I’d like to hear stronger vocals and heavier drums in places. However, I’m being REALLY picky by saying those things, and it’s very much down to my personal taste, so can’t be construed as a failure in any way, shape or form.


It may sound trite, but I genuinely feel as if I have arrived somewhere new. As it says in the last song on the album… “I want more”!

If you feel the same, check out Hats Off Gentlemen It’s Adequate on their official website and reverbnation, and contact them via twitter and facebook. You can buy the digital album on cdbaby and amazon. Go on, take that trip. You won’t regret it.

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