Blood Command – Cult Drugs

To massively over-simplify, if black metal is the product of Norway’s bleak perma-night winter, then Blood Command is a child of its 24-hour-sun summer, a runaway train of glitter cannons loaded with ball bearings that is as sublimely fun, chaotic and threatening as that sounds . Combining pop with metal/hardcore is not new, but rarely has it been done with such an infectious wave of excitement as on new album ‘Cult Drugs’, with two fingers up to convention and both feet on the dancefloor. In some respects, the band can be compared to Skindred in their genre-hopping, hip-shaking party vibe, but where their Welsh forebears are increasingly aimed at open-air stages, Blood Command have the feel of a furnace-hot tent. Despite opening with an industrial crunch that could soundtrack a John Carpenter techno thriller, ‘Cult Drugs’ is ludicrously upbeat, and before you know it has morphed into a deluge of happy, frog-marching Adam & the Ants through a Mindless Self Indulgence electro punk filter. The most immediate and obvious comparison throughout is Marmozets, both in tone and Karina Ljone’s salt and pepper vocals which lurch from sweet melody to scorched skree in an instant, but such parallels do neither party justice since ‘Cult Drugs’ is so wildly unique. Tracks like ‘Quitters Don’t Smoke’ and ‘Nervous Laughter’ come on like a turbocharged Hard-Fi, while ‘Initiation Tape #1’ throws hip-hop into the mix, and ‘Purple Shrouds’ defies all logic by perfectly blending mariachi trumpets with Dragonforce-esque breakneck riffing. It’s this complete lack of borders that both excites and confounds, meaning the band would be equally comfortable supporting Miley Cyrus or Dillinger Escape Plan, and accepted at pretty much any festival, be it Groezrock or the BBC Radio 1 Big Weekend. But most excitingly of all, ‘Cult Drugs’ is reminiscent of the 1990s, when it felt like obtuse, aggressive music had a place at the top table, and following releases from I Eat Heart Attacks and Jagged Vision, further proof that Fysisk Format is THE label to watch in 2017.

Blood Command - Cult Drugs

Categories: Album Reviews, Reviews

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