Album Review: Bloodletter - Funeral Hymns
Reviewed by Richard Oliver
Funeral Hymns is the second album from US thrashers Bloodletter who are a four piece hailing from Chicago. Bloodletter formed in 2013 and have a stream of releases under their belts including several EP’s and a full length album.
Funeral Hymns is an album that takes from the thrash metal of yesteryear, adds in some big melodic death metal influences and adds in a technical and modern sheen. The album is made up of eleven songs and a running length of just under 32 minutes so these are short, sharp blasts of melodic death/thrash that absolutely waste no time in going for the jugular. The band tag themselves as melodic thrash and that is certainly true though the melody is very much in the music itself whilst the vocals stay on the harsh side sounding like a shoutier Mark Osgeuda from Death Angel. The music is a mix of thrash riffs and melodic guitar lines sounding like a cross between Havok and The Black Dahlia Murder at times. The guitarwork from Peter Carparelli and Pat Armamentos is nothing but exceptional throughout with some great melodies and some absolutely sick leads whilst the frantic rhythm section of bassist Adam Payne and drummer Zach Sutton hold everything in place. The songs themselves either stick to the thrashier side of things such as Burnt Beyond Recognition and Mark Of Justice whilst others edge more towards the melodic death metal side such as Funeral Bell and Blood, Bone And Ash.
This is an album that took me a few listens to get into. Even though it is short there is so much going on throughout the album that it takes a few listens to digest it all. It is definitely a grower as I found myself enjoying it more on each subsequent listen. It is a bit repetitive even for a short album and there are lots of songs that sound very similar to each other but all in all this is a cracking second album from Bloodletter. It sits comfortably between thrash metal and melodic death metal and has the best aspects from both genres. This is a fast and frantic but melodic and intricate album that straddles the line between aggression and melody to great effect.