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Album Reviews : Black Asylum – Truths of the Blood

By on November 19, 2008

I’ve given this album countless listens over the past few weeks, trying to think of something to write, but I’m still lost for words. And I don’t mean that in a “holy shit” way, it’s more in a “meh, it’s alright” way. Black Asylum have written a solid thrash album with hints of melodic death and metalcore, but that’s all it is – a solid album, nothing more.

The album is a bit of a mixed bag. Tracks like “Black Insanity” and “This Time We Rise” are straight up thrash and are written well. There are some great speedy riffs in there and very solid drumming. I find it comes off as a bit stale and uninspired on the album, but I’m sure if you had a few beers and witnessed those songs live, you’d be in for some decent headbanging. “Victims of the Fall” leans more toward modern metalcore with its breakdowns and more melodic style, and can fuck right off as far as I’m concerned. Leave that influence behind boys, it brings the album down. Also thrown into the mix are a few moments that have a splash of melodic death metal, and a few slower, acoustic parts (even some piano) which are great on their own but don’t gel with the rest of the album.

The vocals certainly don’t help the album as far as I am concerned, but that’s just personal taste. For the most part, they are Pantera worship, but fall short in the aggression and power departments. When it comes to thrash, I’ll take Araya or Petrozza over Anselmo anyway.

The album has its moments. “Bleeding Away” is a fantastic song; clocking it at the 6 minute mark, it’s a more progressive track ranging from slow piano to heavier, chunkier parts. The softer, almost whispering vocals here are fantastic and fit in well. Although the first of the series of guitar solos toward the end is really unneeded and sounds like it was thrown in just so the track had some thrash in it. Most of the faster, straight-forward thrash tracks have their moments as well with a few interesting riffs thrown here and there. But when you mix these in amongst an assortment of somewhat bland metal tracks, it makes for a dull experience.

This is a solid thrash album that shines in parts but dies in others. Personally, I would like to see the band take one of two directions. Either leave the softer parts behind, focus on something they hate and write a no bullshit thrash album. Or try something a bit more interesting, take advantage of the talent they show on the softer, more progressive song; leaving the strong classic thrash influence behind them. Either way, piss off the breakdowns for hells sake. 6/10

Band: Black Asylum
Album: Truths of the Blood
Year: 2008
Genre: Metal/Thrash
Label: Riot!
Origin: New South Wales, Australia
www.myspace.com/blackasylum

Tracklisting:
1. Beg For Mercy
2. This Time We Rise
3. Victims of the Fall
4. Bleeding Away <- Reviewers Choice
5. 12 Gauge Judas
6. My War
7. Dawn Of No Difference
8. The Shallow Eye
9. …Unspoken
10. Black Insanity
11. Dead to the World

About

Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.