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Santa Cruz - Bad Blood Rising

Santa Cruz
Bad Blood Rising
by Justin "Witty City" Wittenmeier at 10 December 2017, 1:58 PM

SANTA CRUZ’s “Bad Blood Rising,” is a shot of pure adrenaline. Although they don’t sound anything like them, I’ll use CHILDREN OF BODOM has a reference point because they share a similar non-stop energy and shorter, catchy songs that pummel you as you shout them out loud. They have been called everything from Hard Rock to Glam Metal but their sound isn’t as dated as those genres tend to sound.  Their sound is very modern, especially in some of the riffs and vocals. However, that sometimes doesn’t work in their favor.  Archie, case in point, is a very capable guitar player but his vocals aren’t always that great.  At times they get thin and nasally like some late 90’s pop punk band. Its a bit of a distraction but nothing that can’t be ignored.    The beginning of “Fire Running Through Our Veins,” sounds like any radio rock band you would here on the radio currently.  Often times, the album does sound too much like the same ol crap that is currently infecting the airwaves.  However, when the band is on fire, they are on fucking fire.

The opening track, “Young Blood Rising,” is a rager of a track with a nice main riffs, good melodies through the pre chorus, bouncy drums, and a great chorus.   The guitar solo is well done too. Unfortunately, the modern elements creep up again, and the lyrics are repeated a little too much for my tastes. “Voice of the New Generation,” has a very annoying vocal effect but once its over, a decent song comes out.  The riffs are very groovy and the lyrics glide smoothly over top.  The bass is heavy and really boosts the song up. “Pure Fucking Adrenaline,” is aptly named because it makes me want to drop kick people in the face.  The riffs, bass, vocals, drums…everything on this song is on point.  Once the band strips away the repetitive lyrics and annoying vocal hooks, they bring out their big rock guns and knock it straight out of the park.  The riffs on this one wouldn’t sound out of place on a PANTERA record.

This is an enjoyable record that is held back by elements that seem like they are out of place.  Still, the band rocks extremely hard and the album is worth checking out if you want something to bang your head too but you aren’t quite ready for extreme metal.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Young Blood Rising
2. River Phoenix
3. Fire Running Through Our Veins
4. Drag Me Out Of The Darkness
5. Breathe
6. Voice of the New Generation
7. Back From The Dead
8. Bad Habits Die hard
9. Pure Fucking Adrenaline
10. Get Me Out of California
11. River Phoenix, Pt. 2
Archie - Vocals, Guitar
Johnny - Guitar, Backing Vocals
Middy - Bass, Backing Vocals
Taz - Drums, Backing Vocals
Record Label: M-Theory Audio


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