Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Album Review: Bloodclot - Up In Arms

Up In Arms
**** out of *****

Two New York City Hardcore legends John Joseph (Cro-Mags) and Todd Youth (Murphy's Law, Danzig) recently rekindled a friendship and a long forgotten band, Bloodclot. That combo has produced this sizzling debut album that directly calls back early 80's thrash/punk/hardcore.

Recruiting Joey Castillo on drums and Nick Oliveri on bass (who have both played with Queens of The Stone Age and others) the four piece lock in from the opening title track which is direct before devolving into a break down that will have mosh pits overflowing when it hits. The band is clear in their throwback style, most songs are short bursts of riffs, screams, crashes and bangs.

"Fire" is a blasting punk burst that would be great on skate mix tape, Youth's fiery solos dominate "Manic" as he shreds the fret board and "Kill The Beast" cuts right to the core with it's power and brevity. Both "Prayer" and "Slipping Into Darkness" motor, letting the low end shine while "Solider's of the New Babylon" is a rousing shout along number, then comes a track like "Siva/Rudra" recalling the best of of both Joseph's Cro-Mag past and Youth's frantic ax playing shining as a highlight to the album.   

For fans of early era NYHC this is a must own as there is no filler anywhere, each song is dynamite exploding in eardrums. From their raw call to unity on "Life As One" to their pummeling stomping of the disk closing 'You'll Be the Death of Me" this quartet is blazing.

Joesph is in excellent vocal form and the whole production sounds crisp and alive, pulsating in speaker cabinets or headphones. While there is clear Bad Brains love and devotion in almost every song, that tribute feel also mixes with tried and true punk staples. Originality isn't a strong point, but the energy, professionalism and balls out enjoyment of the genre is evident from the first note to the last carrying Bloodclot's first release to soaring heights, here's hoping there are more to come.     
Thanks to Glen for cluing us into this one, legends getting back to their NYHC roots and doing so in a damn great way. Support the band, buy the album stream it below or on bandcamp and peep some video:

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