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Bloodbound - "In The Name Of Metal" (CD)

Bloodbound - "In The Name Of Metal" CD cover image

"In The Name Of Metal" track listing:

1. In The Name Of Metal (4:16)
2. When Demons Collide (4:11)
3. Bonebreaker (3:05)
4. Metalheads Unite (5:00)
5. Son Of Babylon (3:19)
6. Mr. Darkness (3:15)
7. I'm Evil (3:55)
8. Monstermind (3:34)
9. King Of Fallen Grace (3:19)
10. Black Devil (3:47)
11. Bounded By Blood (4:07 )

Reviewed by on November 13, 2012

"So, when you are all done mocking power metal for its lack of originality, Bloodbound will still be there: totally unapologetic, balls to the wall, hail and kill, steel meets steel, bells of seven hells metal that makes you want to be a metalhead."

Sweden’s Bloodbound has returned with the fifth album “In the Name of Metal.” If you think this album is all about dripping anthems raging about the glory of metal and all related topics...you would be right. If you think you have heard it all before, well, perhaps you have. BUT....if you love "Franken-traditional" comprised of parts of Manowar, Accept, ancient Queensryche, Helloween, Skid Row, and oddly, old Bon Jovi, well you have a new master. What Bloodbound did was take the sum of those parts, add the slick 2012 production and put out one of the greatest true metal albums in memory. For every single solitary thing that Manowar did wrong with “The Lord of Steel,” Bloodbound did ten things right. If you will indulge me, let me impart a few words that apply: “Glory, majesty, unity Hail! Hail! Hail!”

I often speak of songs of yore back in the great times of the beginning to mid-80's and how it evoked a spirit, a feeling...a metal brotherhood, if you will. I’ve pointed out many recent albums that evoked that spirit, and I am back to tell you that this is another of those, but the best of all - complete with the hair standing on the back of my neck. Only my favorite bands have the ability to do this, and Bloodbound was not in that realm up to this point. As far as an album that lives up to its name, “In the Name of Metal” is glaringly perfect. As an album that breaks new ground, it “falls flat.” As an insult, that last statement is completely the opposite.

Having heard the song “In the Name of Metal,” it wet my appetite providing more Manowar than the aged egos of its members have since “Gods of War” (for some, much earlier). This is nothing compared to what follows: the Accept-ish “When Demons Collide” (a personal favorite), the “bonecrushing” sound of first album HammerFall on “Bonebreaker,” back to Manowar with “Metalheads Unite,” Bloodbound took every working formula and made it better. “Son of Babylon” had me head scratching wondering where I had heard that chorus and it dawned on me, if Bon Jovi made “In and Out of Love” a heavy song, it would be this. “Mr. Darkness” doesn’t just scream Helloween for nothing: it has “Mrs. God” all over it (or was that “Dr. Stein,” no...no “Mr. Torture,” wait, no “Mr. Ego”). “I’m Evil” has a chorus that echoes (linear wise) Queensryche’s “Breaking the Silence.” The comparisons here are merely meant to show the affluence of talent drawing influences from all over the metal spectrum.

The most interesting combination is found within “Monstermind.” The verses present a riff right from Motley Crue’s “Dr. Feelgood.” Then right before the bridge it grinds down with that brash riff from Ozzy’s “No More Tears” (complete with the Zack Wylde style). So many great styles meld to make “In the Name of Metal,” which works in terms of catchy head banging greatness. It helps that a band has a phenom on vocals in the form of Patrik Johansson (from Dawn of Silence, not to be confused with Nils Patrik Johansson), a brotherhood of guitarists (Tomas & Henrik Olsson), the absolutely non-buzzing bass of Anders Broman, and the perfect (not mechanical) drumming of Pelle Åkerlind (Morgana Lefay). Fredrik Bergh is one of those keyboardists that is unassuming, but who’s presence is notable when absent. Even he would agree, in Bloodbound it’s all about the guitar.

So, when you are all done mocking power metal for its lack of originality, Bloodbound will still be there: totally unapologetic, balls to the wall, hail and kill, steel meets steel, bells of seven hells metal that makes you want to be a metalhead. Music doesn’t always require over the top orchestration or melodramatic progressive Malthusianism. Most days, it’s what makes you instantly feel great, even though the world laughs at you for being in a “pre-pubescent phase.” For the metal faithful, every achievement in life is all “in the name of metal.”

Highs: Unapologetic traditional power metal with a variety of influences.

Lows: Those weary of Manowar-esque anthems proclaiming metal king should lay low.

Bottom line: Bloodbound scores where Manowar failed....all "in the name of metal."

Rated 4.0 out of 5 skulls
4.0 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)