Searing I - Bloodshred
Black Lotus Records
Thrash Metal
14 songs (42:27)
Release year: 2005
Black Lotus
Reviewed by Al

Thrash is a fickle beast. Bad thrash sounds like a collection of Attention Deficit Disorder kids given instruments and deprived of Ritalin, Good thrash makes you want to throw yourself around a room / venue / random public place like the aforementioned ADD sufferers. So where, I hear you cry, does ‘Bloodshred’, the debut offering from the Swedish five piece Searing I sit?

The short answer is somewhere in the middle. Satisfied?

Thought not. Formed after the break-up of a death metal band called ‘The Prophecy’, they recently signed under Black Lotus Records and after four previous failed demo attempts and numerous line-up changes, inked a three album deal. This is obviously not a good sign, thus I approached my first listen with a small measure of trepidation and I’m glad to say I was pleasantly surprised.

The music on offering here is fast and brutal thrash with shredding riffs and machine gun drumming. It borrows heavily from the style of ‘The Haunted’ and if you’re familiar with that bands work, speed it up a bit, and you’ll know what to expect here. The musicianship is very good and a few slightly dull riffs and uninspired beats aside, I can’t fault it. The vocals of Andreas Hansson have more of a death metal style to them and it is with them that my main criticism lies. Although adequate, they do little to complement the music, devolving into faster-than-thou growls at times. The record kicks off with ‘Empty Threats’ which although decent, is hurt by an awful shouted chorus of sorts. a problem that continues to crop up a few times later on. Things do rapidly improve through the next few tracks with some awesome riffs and drumming and the odd impressive solo. An honourable mention goes to ‘The Gift / Curse’ which flows extremely well and is easily the peak of the album. ‘A Treacherous Ride’ temporarily turns the quality in its head as again, as it’s ruined by another awful chorus. Things do get back on track fast however and the blistering aggression and pace continue throughout the rest of the album. There a few weak points in the form of a few dull riffs and poor vocals such as the effort on ‘Vision Within’. A blistering highlight comes in the form of ‘Downfall’ which mixes things up with some good tempo changes and more variance over the course of the song than is demonstrated elsewhere.

On a critical front the tracks can tend to blend into one another at times as a very strict formula is followed throughout, a bit more variance wouldn’t have gone amiss, then again this is a thrash record and that’s not surprising. This is no genre defining effort but a decent debut nonetheless and with some tightening up of the vocals and a bit of imagination I could imagine these guys producing some important stuff.

Killing Songs :
The Gift / Curse, Downfall
Al quoted 72 / 100
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