3 Inches Of Blood - Fire Up The Blades review
|Band:||3 Inches Of Blood|
|Album:||Fire Up The Blades|
|Release date:||June 2007|
01. Through The Horned Gate
02. Night Marauders
03. The Goatriders Horde
04. Trial Of Champions
05. God Of The Cold White Silence
06. Forest King
07. Demons Blade
08. The Great Hall Of Feasting
09. Infinite Legions
10. Assassins Of The Light
11. Black Spire
12. The Hydra's Teeth
13. Rejoice In The Fires Of Man's Demise
14. Nocturnal Command [Japanese bonus]
Let's face it, having to replace band members can be a career altering pain, but having to replace an entire line-up (save for the vocalists) could have been down-right career ending for what was left of 3 Inches Of Blood, extreme pressure to say the least. Luckily the band managed to remedy this problem with moderate success with the latest offering, "Fire Up The Blades".
One would think that having to replace all the musicians in a band would compromise the bands signature sound - that's not the case here. Pipes & Hooper (the remaining members) made wise choices in assembling a new line-up. We still hear the signature 3 Inches' sound of intensified NWOBHM with tasteful metal core elements thrown in. Performance and production wise the band has made vast improvements with tighter riffs, faster tempos, and thicker, heavier production. Another noteworthy point of the albums overall sound is the how the songs flow seamlessly into one another, making it one of those albums that demands not to be played on shuffle.
After a somewhat forgettable instrumental intro track, we are instantly shown the vocal skill of Jamie Hooper with a blood curdling followed by a charging rhythm which unfolds into a fully pleasing sonic attack. The next track steps it up even further with an absolutely blistering opening 45 seconds, which shows us what exactly Cam Pipes is capable of - taking on a slightly rougher edge to his voice in comparison to earlier material. The track to follow gets even better, and is probably the peak of the album - proving to be an extremely wise choice as the single. The arrangement in this track, 'Trial Of Champions' is perfect, with a cool addition of organs to add a little power into the climax points of the song. After this series of utterly solid tracks the album seems to drop off a bit and becomes inconsistent. The song writing tends to become aimless and meandering, which is not exactly a new problem in the band's sound. Long story short, the good songs are great, the bad songs are anything but memorable.
Although the band has taken a slight backward step in overall song writing despite musicianship improvements, I firmly believe we have yet to see this band at its peak. Perhaps the band chemistry has not fully formed in this new line up, which could be the reason for the lack-lustre song writing, but alas we will just have to wait for the bands 4th installment to see if that's a realistic excuse.
Highlights: 'The Goatriders Horde', 'Trial Of Champions', and 'The Great Hall Of Feasting'.
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