Friday, February 24, 2012

Bleeding Through Unleash The Great Fire

The O.C.’s contribution to metal core has returned in a big way with a new album that is loaded and ready to assault your senses. Bleeding Through just released The Great Fire, the anticipated follow-up to their 2010 self titled album. That 2010 release saw the band step in the right direction to gain back some fans who were disappointed with their 2006 release The Truth. Fans have been anxiously awaiting this release and hoping that the boys will keep moving in the right direction. Well, let’s take the scalpel and dissect this new album.

The opener, “The March”, is a short instrumental clocking in at under two minutes, but it’s intense and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Up next is “Faith in Fire” which starts out with a guttural scream from lead singer Brandon Schieppati that unleashes the band’s assault. This is definitely one of the best tracks on the album as the band sounds tight and focused.

“Final Hour” starts off with a fury, but it seems to take two steps forward and three steps back when it gets to the chorus. You see, that’s when the vocals go clean and the intensity level drops quite a few notches. Brandan gets it back on track with his growl going into verse two and the crunching guitars a follow close behind. The clean vocals just don’t seem to do anything for me.

That leads us into “Starving Vultures” and another negative aspect. The song rocks on just about every level. The two guitar assault of Brian Leppke and Dave Nassie are dead on and Brandon’s vocals are intense. The problem in this song lies in the keyboards. Similar in vain to the clean vocals, the keyboards in this track really take away from it. If the song is the major leagues, then the keyboards are definitely in the minor leagues. Don’t get me wrong, I like how the band incorporates the keyboards into their songs and they usually benefit from them, but this time it just doesn’t work.

The band then quickly rebounds with “Walking Dead”. The song begins with a lone piano intro, but you know that this is not going to be a ballad. The song then changes speeds and the crashing guitars kick in as does the insane drumming of Derek Youngsman. Listen to the closing minute of the song closely. Is it just me or is the band paying homage to their favorite zombie show? This is definitely one of the stronger cuts and one of my favorite tracks.

“Deaf Ear” has an awesome riff that grabs you by the throat and commands your attention like a blind man juggling chain saws. That riff continues on for two minutes and fifty five seconds and doesn’t let up. “Entrenched” is another song with a great guitar intro. It’s dark and haunting and then the band joins in and it starts to chug right along. Suddenly, it changes speeds yet again into an all out thrash fest going a million miles an hour. This is a crazy song that will have you sweating off pounds if listened to in its entirety.

Overall, I think this is another step in the right direction for the band. There are a few low points on the album, but the highs by far outweigh the lows. One listen will prove to listeners that Revolver was right back in 2004 when they named the band “One of 8 bands ushering in the future of metal.”

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