The four piece thrash metal band, Bonded By Blood, continues to make an effort with their new album, entitled "The Aftermath." These Californians have got some wicked talent on their team that can deliver mind blowing guitar solos and complex drum rolls. The vocals on the other hand not so much.
The album slowly fades in with "I Can't Hear You," which goes right into distorted guitars that grab you with their melodic tones right from the get. Relentless snares and cymbals crash away in the background with double bass pedals rumbling heavily beneath you. The vocals come in with aggression however sound very similar to the vocals from the band Death Angel. This becomes a huge downer as you get deeper into the song. There's nothing wrong with Death Angel's vocals but if i wanted to hear them then i would just play them instead. What worse is that the delivery is sort of weak. The lyrics are very choppy and are delivered in three or four syllables at a time. "Shepherds Of Rot" continues this horrible performance with more choppy lyrics. Musically, the guitars are pretty wild. They are constantly throwing melodic riffs at you making you want to get up and mosh. They even include a reckless guitar solo that will absolutely blow your mind. It's the verses and refrains that puts a damper on this track.
"Crawling In The Shadows" has a real up beat tempo to eat making you want to throw your devil horns up immediately. Galloping bass lines followed by rapid double bass pedal drum patterns gets your blood pumping right away. The vocals however, start to put you to sleep. I feel like they're trying to hard to be aggressive and melodic at the same time. If you can't pull off both at once then you need to just commit to one or the other. And again it feels like you're listening to Death Angel instead. They do manage to throw in another powerful guitar solo that saves the song. Unfortunately the solo and the drum rolls are the only things worth hearing.
Later you'll come across a groovy melody in "Show No Fear." The guitars in the beginning definitely pull you in. Some of the vocals are pretty decent as well. They switch from their regular singing to a more aggressive type of growl. It's very refreshing regardless of whether or not you like it. I think more change ups like this would help the album out a lot. Unfortunately they still lean back towards their usually delivery in The final song, "Left Behind." They do add a little surprise at the end of the album though. There is an 11th track on the album and it happens to be a cover of Rage Against The Machine's "Killing In The Name Of." The guitars seem a little more heavier than the original recording but that's expected. The vocals were actually decent for this song however this is clearly a whole different genre that they're in. Overall I'd just stick with Rage Against The Machines recording instead. This cover is nothing too special.
Overall "The Aftermath" was a bit of a disappointment. This was my first real encounter with Bonded By Blood and it's probably gonna be my last as well. The vocals are very unoriginal and delivered in a very plain and boring way. Perhaps if they dropped their singer and tried something new I would then maybe give them a chance. The guitars and drums were the only things that sounded decent and definitely have a lot of potential.
Myspace - http://www.myspace.com/bondedbyblood