Fresh out of the gate, Blue Clutch are boiling hot on their new album.
From the opening cut “Silent Reckoning,” they are firing on all cylinders. They take no prisoners, bashing against the wall with Pittsburgh steel. Machine-gun riffing and soaring, angelic vocals from guitarist/vocalist Sarah Halter leave only dust in their wake. “Silent Reckoning” is like a loud crash between a Metallica and Evanescence pile-up. The group doesn’t waste a minute, learning from the brevity of punk but also the technical precision of progressive heavy metal. They rock hard but with a melodic undertow. Yet there’s no denying the oppressive darkness of bands such as Tool.
Blue Clutch excel at both power and atmosphere. “Skywars” is abundant with pummeling drums and sleek textures. Halter’s stinging, driving guitars and Lia Silverbeams’ heavy pounding pack an intense wallop that also sounds beautiful in its brief dissonance. Probably the best track on the record is “Munchausen Syndrome” with its frenetic speed and two-fisted vocals. Blue Clutch will punch you in the jaw, and there’s no better compliment to give such ripping heavy metal.