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Hellyeah Unveil New Material at Brooklyn Show

How do you know when you’re at a Hellyeah show? There are a few giveaways: If the band takes the stage to ‘East Bound and Down’ — Jerry Reed‘s theme song to the 1977 comedy ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ — you might be at one. If there’s a mass shout-out to Dimebag Darrell, former Pantera shredder and brother of Hellyeah skinsman Vinnie Paul, you’re probably at one. And if you find yourself unable to resist smiling while hearing song titles like ‘Alcohaulin’ Ass,’ ‘Goddamn,’ ‘Nausea’ and ‘Hell of a Time,’ you’re definitely at one of their shows.

All of those telltale signs were present and accounted for as the band tested out some new material from their forthcoming sophomore album, ‘Stampede,’ during their first headlining show in two years at Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Music Hall of Williamsburg.

Brooklyn is known for many things, but rednecks aren’t one of them. So the Music Hall — more used to hosting bands like Yeasayer and M.I.A. — was a somewhat incongruous venue for Hellyeah’s one-off show. Once inside, however, it didn’t matter, as the sizeable crowd was warmed up by local band Black Water Rising.

By the time Hellyeah (which also features Mudvayne‘s Chad Gray and Greg Tribbett, Nothingface‘s Tom Maxwell and Damageplan‘s Bob Zilla) took the stage, the audience was ready for some Southern-themed metal fun. With a flame backdrop and steel cow skulls on either side of the stage, the band led with ‘Matter of Time,’ from their debut album and didn’t let up until well over an hour had passed.

In previous interviews, band members talked about how fun Hellyeah is as a side project, and a sense of that permeated the show. “[The] show was a f—ing blast!” Vinnie Paul told Noisecreep. “The crowd was great! Our first headlining show since 2008 and a great opportunity to play the new songs live.” If possible, Maxwell had even more fun than Paul, telling Noisecreep, “It felt like losing my virginity all over again!”

The first new song they played, ‘Cowboy Way,’ is available for free download from the band’s website. They played several other new songs from the forthcoming album, due out July 13. The band will be playing some radio station festivals in May before doing a European tour in June.

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