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Bastard - Rotten Blood

Bastard
Rotten Blood
by Andrew Harvey at 05 June 2022, 2:59 PM

This is another mix of thrash and black metal I have now as I am very familiar with the blending of these two genres and I will be diving right into the deep end of what I like to refer to as blackened thrash metal. However there can also be essences of death metal and speed metal though I find myself hearing thrash or black metal more. I have seen this term used before even if it was a different genre mixed in with black metal and I couldn't be more happier to be taking a closer look at these hellraisers known as BASTARD. The band themselves are a belter of a blackened thrash metal quartet who certainly made an impression on myself from listening to them and I hope they make just as much of an influence on their listeners.

They can be compared to bands such as NIFELHEIM and GOATHAORE. The band lineup has changed since their inception in 2011, but now currently fronted up by JASON BARRON on vocals leading this quartet, SCOTT FAGELBACH is on guitar duties, also we have bassist TIM KUTTERER and finally on drums we have JASON ASBERRY. As the band began, they started out with DEMO 2012 a year after forming, this demo had three tracks to give the listeners a teaser for what they are about. Then there was a long wait until their debut album came out three years later in 2015, which was titled HADES COMMAND, released through Distortion Music Group which the music was based on themes of satan, murder and horror.

An EP would follow that same year in 2015 titled ALCOHOLOCAUST containing four tracks, now they have come to the point where the time is right in releasing their second album titled ROTTEN BLOOD as the eighth track also shares the same title. Introducing the album is “Whipstrike” as drums pump up the volume with mind blowing guitar effects as the track receives a kick in the teeth by vocals. Thrash elements are certainly audible and guitar + bass guitar defines this. Even the wicked guitar solos and vibrato dominate as drums lay down the foundations. “Hellfire & Steel” barks viciously with vocals taking short crescendo and making itself known roaring with power and determination.

The drums as before are shaking the ground beneath its feet and tag along as vocals or electric guitar play through. They pounce more and smack harder at times we go into the next track. “The Possession” is queued up with guitar laying the path for drums to gradually build up on top then monstrous vocals rejoin eventually. There are certainly themes and feelings of satanic soundscape as the words are spoken but possessed as the track suggests to give that daunting atmosphere. A bombardment of a full band unison comes in halfway as we are then pushed into the next track.

Leather Bound Book Of Lies” has no boundaries or limitations letting loose the engine of chaos as black metal vocals let it rip as the drums are at full throttle. The cymbal hits are quick and precise to throw us into the next track. “Crescent Horn” is where drums pick where they left off and have more of a metallic, sadistic movement as guitar rages on with a short build up at one point halfway as guitar produces unreal hooks that project very well. “Protector” is merely similar with drums as far as they are concerned and guitar go hand in hand with drums ploughing through like a bullet train.

Vocals are heavy as before and there is another short guitar solo as cymbal hits bring back the full band unison. “Under The Tattered Banners(Of Rock ‘n’ Roll)” a fairly short enough affair as drums excel as they do get more creative and vary more in sound aspects. But heavy guitar and bass guitar set the tone as before as the track slowly decays. “Rotten Blood” which is the album title is simply staggering as the momentum is strong as ever. The tempo or timing does vary slightly as there is more of a sway but nevertheless guitar screeches over the track as we enter the penultimate track.

Spellbound” shatters the audio spectrum as this album has all the way throughout as vocal harmonies or backing vocals can be heard at times as drums advance with an essential blastbeat rhythm with double kicks from drums. It is full steam ahead into the final track which is titled “Bewitched” as it is full of wicked guitar riffs and hammering drums that stamp down with almighty vengeance. The guitar pitch shifts comes in very nicely and drums have a short time flying all out and crashing as vocals or guitar rejoins. This basically closes the album on a gradual descending outro.

Overall I would completely be inspired by the drumming as they really do bring out the best of thrash elements of this band and they are so fast at times, it is astounding to hear them. Vocals are in their own class of their own since I have listened to blackened thrash metal before and I am so impressed with the tone and grit of the vocals, they are amazing. Guitar also brings the drive and takes the band to all sorts of directions yet they fail to let down as drums do become so continuous. A fantastic album with lots to like about it and I look forward to hearing these blackened thrash metal musicians in the near future.


Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Whipstrike
2. Hellfire & Steel
3. The Possession
4. Leather Bound Book Of Lies
5. Crescent Of Horn
6. Protector
7. Under The Tattered Banners(Of Rock ‘n’ Roll)
8. Rotten Blood
9. Spellbound
10. Bewitched
Lineup:
Jason Barron - Vocals
Scott Fagelbach - Guitar & Vocals
Tim Kutterer - Bass Guitar & Vocals
Jason Asberry - Drums & Vocals
Record Label: Distortion Music Group
     


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