"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Attika 7 - "Blood of My Enemies" (CD)

Attika 7 - "Blood of My Enemies" CD cover image

"Blood of My Enemies" track listing:

1. Crackerman (4:03)
2. Serial Killer (4:12)
3. Devil's Daughter (5:17)
4. Greed And Power (3:16)
5. All Or Nothing (4:03)
6. Lockdown (4:06)
7. The Hard Cold Truth (1:24)
8. No Redemption (2:57)
9. Blood Of My Enemies (4:22)
10. Living In Oppression (2:17)
11. Dying Slowly (4:01)
12. Hellbound (3:35)
13. War (5:02)

Reviewed by on July 31, 2012

"Coones and Seinfeld work well as a team, making 'Blood Of My Enemies' more than just a middle-of-the-road first effort."

Evan Seinfeld’s departure from Biohazard came as an unpredictable swerve, considering the band was in the midst of releasing a new album at the time the news was announced. Seinfeld wasted little time hooking up with a new project, Attika 7, which is the brainchild of guitarist Rusty Coones. Coones, a motorcycle enthusiast, had a stint in prison, and this is the location where the concept of Attika 7 began to form. Having Seinfeld as lead vocalist gives this band instant credibility, though their ‘90s grunge/hard rock sound on “Blood Of My Enemies” is dated by about a decade.

Seinfeld and Coones are joined by Tony Campos (Soulfly, Prong, Static-X) and Dustin Schoenhofer (Bury Your Dead, Walls Of Jericho) on bass and drums, respectively. Those two are solid studio musicians to collaborate with, and Campos in particular puts in a great performance. His bass work is the foundation for every song to stack up from, but his ruthless, thumping bass lines stand out the most on the title track and “No Redemption.”

Many of these songs leave a grimy stain behind with their hard-edge rock, with brief fancies into metal. There has been a stink made about this being “biker music” or something for the Harley-Davidson-riding crowd, but “Blood Of My Enemies” is not as clear-cut as that. “Living In Oppression” and “Lockdown” describe the difficult life that Coones has led, as much of this album seems resided to the confines of an 8X8 jail cell. The lyrics are very personal, and while it gets to be overbearing on the awkward spoken word interlude “The Hard Cold Truth,” it largely gives a realism missing from much of today’s rock/metal.

For the star power behind the band, Attika 7 can’t avoid falling into the trap of treading familiar grounds with their music. There are allusions to better bands like Alice in Chains and Soundgarden on “Serial Killer” and “Dying Slowly.” Usually, these tie-ins to past acts come when the band lays the brake on the tempo, though the groovy “Devil’s Daughter” is a noteworthy exception. The band comes out stronger when the focus is on a punishing experience delivered in three minutes, not languishing on half-baked ideas like the dull closer “War.”

Though “Blood Of My Enemies” is not something that will leave an indisputable mark on music like Biohazard’s early material, Attika 7 comes off in a positive light on this debut. The songs chug and bounce the way any good rock song should. Seinfeld seems more motivated throughout this album than on “Reborn In Defiance,” with his vocals having more depth to them and allowing him a platform to explore cleaner tones. The album has the range to appeal to a broad audience of rock/metal fans. Coones and Seinfeld work well as a team, making “Blood Of My Enemies” more than just a middle-of-the-road first effort.

Highs: Change of pace for Evan Seinfeld, killer rhythm team, few faster cuts hit hard

Lows: Parts sound like half-baked Alice In Chains ideas, not terribly original, spoken word poetry on "The Cold Hard Truth"

Bottom line: Hard rock/metal with mainstream appeal, "Blood Of My Enemies" is a decent first effort from Attika 7.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)