You ever see people who wear T-shirts of famous heavy metal bands, but they don’t know who they are? Yeah, you know the type, usually it’s Nirvana, Metallica, Def Leppard, Iron Maiden, the list goes on. Not doubting the true fans, but it’s becoming more apparent that famous artists are going from their intent as musicians to a fashion statement in the masses. But if you see someone donning merch for modern hard-rockers Puppy, chances are they’re legit. Roaring into 2019 with their debut album The Goat, the London heavy metal squadron makes tropes of rock’s demise non-existent. The opening song “Black Hole” bursts in with steamrolling guitars, punchy drums, and smooth Phil Collins-esque vocals to balance the tension. Between the appropriately monikered “Vengeance” and the groove-metal laden “Bathe In Blood”, it becomes increasingly known to the listener that a band so recent can churn sounds so original. Influences are taken with a grain of salt rather than carbon-copied from preceding groups, the very foundation of which heavy metal was forged and what rock has hungered over for the last decade. It might be the tracks “I Feel An Evil” and “Entombed” that make the most wondrous strides. The radio-friendly former is no slouch, a fun riffy animal that’s befitting of a chase scene in a gearhead film. Meanwhile the latter is what might happen if the tunes of Corrosion of Conformity made a molecular bond with that of Ghost. Put simply, a chimera of sonic prowess. Newer bands more than ever have trouble getting noticed with such a wide span of platforms, and if The Goat is any indication, Puppy deserves whatever notability they can get.