The Seraphim Fall
With a cacophony of layered white noises, The Seraphim Fall begins, not with a whimper, but with a soul-splitting scream. This is Bloodlet’s second full-length CD to date, and the songs just keep going farther and farther out. When I say “out,” I don’t mean it in a Grateful Dead-esque trippy kind of “out.” This is more like a Norse Berserker going to raid the peaceful village “out.”
The first song after the intro noise is abruptly cut off is “Whitney.” This song has been played live by the band for two years, and it shows by how well they handle the strange rhythmic deviations the song calls for. The Bloodlet sound has grown increasingly technical over the years, but it never hits me as a music clinic for its own sake, a la Dream Theater. The sound is more like emotions being changed into something more complex and analytical. “Dogman With Horns” follows, and then “Sister Supreme,” which is one of my favorites to hear live, with its dynamic changes. Next is the skit within a song called “Stew For The Murder Minded,” where two people deliver a dead body while a hip-hoppy version of “Shoot the Pig” plays in the background. “Shoot the Pig” comes in after that, with what I could probably say is one of Bloodlet’s most memorable riffs. The lyrics are a character sketch of a guy who has an extreme love of handguns and spends hours cleaning and polishing his masculinity. Next is “Seven Hours of Angelfood,” with a dragging riff and trudging rhythm. A segue of treated drums leads into “Seraphim,” from there which is a sister song to “Cherubim,” a song on an earlier CD. Some lyrics are even referred to, if not fully quoted. “Seraphim” starts out almost reminiscent of Today is the Day, but turns into something patently Bloodlet. There are more changes than I can count, and the
lyrics are like reading an epic, by the end you almost feel overloaded. “Sawtooth Grin” is my personal favorite so far. It starts with almost an Entombed groove, but disintegrates into something like a soundtrack to a nightmare. The first word I used to describe this song was “disorienting,” and I think I will stick with that. The final song is “Lamentations (A Tribute to Infamy)” which goes at the same pace as pushing a one ton boulder up a steep incline. Fans of the tension with no release school of music will be into this one. Kind of like Eyehategod mixed with Black Sabbath. But I repeat myself. Finally “Your Hours,” an acoustic guitar instrumental, ends things by way of letting down softly after over an hour of a beating I enjoyed.
My only complaint about this CD is this volume of the mix. Things could certainly be much louder, however the simple solution is to turn up the stereo and brace for impact. Victory Records, PO Box 146546, Chicago, IL 60614, www.victoryrecords.com, www.bloodlet.com