Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bloodbath - Grand Morbid Funeral (2014)

Words cannot begin to express my elation upon discovering that Nick Holmes from Paradise Lost was going to be the vocalist on the new Bloodbath album. Not so much because I'm some huge fan of Nick Holmes or Paradise Lost but I just felt that this was such an odd yet logical pairing and I was more than curious to hear the rotten fruits of this combination. It's like one of those bright ideas that has long lingered beneath your nose and upon discovery you feel like and idiot for having not connected the dots sooner.

Now don't get me wrong, I DO happen to like Paradise Lost (well, everything up 'til 'Shades of God, at least) but my excitement at the prospect of having one of Peaceville's original warriors of doom teaming up with one of that label's newer hordes had me feeling more than a bit giddy inside. Honestly, I would have probably been a bit bummed had the band chosen to employ the services of yet another one of their well-traveled countrymen such as Jorgen Sandstrom (as earlier rumors had indicated). I mean, hell, if the whole purpose of this band's existence is to pay homage to the days of old then why not go all out by reaching back in time and snatching up one of the genre's true forefathers?

Now I've already seen some of the whining, bitching and complaining regarding Nick's vocal style and I have to say that I'm a little surprised. These are undoubtedly the same people who give praise to the butt-pirate of Autopsy's cartoonishly goofy vocals yet all of a sudden transform into "serious" critics of all that is death metal once the homosexual festivities of THAT band have ceased to continue. Honestly, if this is the type of people that these sorts of opinions are wrought from then so be it. I'll take Holmes over anyone that these idiots drools over ANY fucking day of the week. Sure, if you're expecting Holmes' bellow of old here then you may be left feeling a bit empty inside but if you're looking for something a bit "maggoty" and rotten sounding then be at ease for Holmes' has delivered the good right on time.

Musically, this is more or less a typical Bloodbath affair, which is A-OK. I wouldn't want them going too far off the experimental deep-end. You still have your nods to Morbid Angel drenched in the Stockholm sound and hell, there's even a riff or two that reminded me of early Exodus. Whether or not that was intentional I have no idea though I was pleasantly receptive to it nonetheless.

I have to say, with all many of death and doom metal's "elder gods" rising from their stylistic slumber as of late, I am very excited to see what lies in wait. Not only was there the death/doom marriage of My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost in Vallenfyre and then Nick Holmes entry into the ranks of Bloodbath but I have recently discovered that Paradise Lost themselves are interested in revisiting the gloomy rot of their earliest incarnation. The future looks bright, er, dark indeed!


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