12 May 2016

Bloodwraith: "As Above, So Below"

Slighty below par, and highly unadventurous
With bands like Sarcófago and Hellhammer having already explored the thrashiest reaches of dirty black metal by the late 80s, Wargoat has his work cut out for him if he wants to stand out among the throngs of imitators with his Bloodwraith project.

Born out of the ashes of his previous project Shadows of Sin, Kevin Wargoat remains the driving force. As Above, So Below from 2012 marks the debut of Bloodwraith as a new band. Donning the mantle of first wave black metal in all its gritty, unrefined familiarity, the album aims at a sound easy to do but difficult to master.

"...the album is not without its surprises..."

Apart from the occassional twist, like the brazen jass intro track that opens the album, Bloodwraith's lineup of thin strings, fell voices and fast drumming comes off as rather pedestrian. Venturing into daring efforts of clean vocals and resorting to other unusual elements, the album is not without its surprises for better or worse. As we discover with Beneath the Winter Moon, Wargoat does possess an ability to write a fairly varied piece of black metal.

Bloodwraith seems comfortable with its own concept, and as such the debut is consistent, if a little uneventful. Lacking the ferocity and simplistically memorable riffs of earlier bands, however, As Above, So Below is doomed to forever remain a stale affair. What few hooks it does have pulls it up to an average level, but from there it never ascends. 

When all is said and done, Wargoat's debut as Bloodwraith is an easily forgettable experience drowned out by more competent songwriters. Not entirely without merrit, the amount of boring filler simply overshadows the good compositions to such a degree that the entire album will quickly be written off as a waste of time.


Released in 2012 by Cvlminis


No comments:

Post a Comment