Released: 2011, Metal Mind Productions
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz
2009 marked the return of Danish thrash legends Artillery with their spectacularly heavy comeback album, WHEN DEATH COMES. Featuring a new throat and a renewed sense of energy, the band proved that there was still some ammo left in the chamber. Apparently the band had a few more rounds to dispense, as MY BLOOD is just as fierce and as its predecessor. Similar in style and scope to WDC, MY BLOOD amps up the aggression factor for another welcomed collection of classic thrash tunes.
The songs on MY BLOOD are pretty anthemic in nature, which I have to think was a strategic decision on behalf of the band. Lots of reoccurring themes here about fighting against tyranny, perseverance in the face of duress, and even some eco awareness tossed in for good measure. The eastern flavored title track, “Warrior Blood,” “Ain’t’ Giving In” and the pit encouraging “Thrasher” all harkens back to the days of when a fist pump in the air wasn’t related to Jersey Shore, and a spiked wrist band was the obvious garment accessory for any outfit. Stylistically, Artillery hasn’t strayed much from territory covered on the last album, but the production is fuller and the guitar tones carry more weight accordingly, and it makes for a generally angrier batch of songs. The band’s knack for infusing melody into their formula has only gotten better with age, as evidenced in tracks like “Monster” and “Dark Days.”
MY BLOOD features the same lineup that appeared on WDC, and most notably, this is vocalist Søren Nico Adamsen’s second studio effort with the band. Though the guy has already proven that he’s up to the task of fronting Artillery, his performance on MY BLOOD should quell any lingering squabbles about him replacing Flemming. His bellowing wail is only slightly less powerful than the Stützer brothers’ riff factory. And yes, there are riffs-a-plenty. Heavy, crisp, galloping riffs abound with sporadic bursts of shred and loads of harmony. This has been a hallmark of the Artillery sound for ages, but as I said, they continue to improve this recipe with the knowledge that only age and experience can provide.
Special digipack versions of MY BLOOD come with two bonus tracks, “Show Your Hate 2011” and “Eternal War 2011,” both of which are revisited versions of tunes from their ’85 breakthrough album FEAR OF TOMORROW. Personally, I felt that this lineup’s interpretation of the two songs were better than the original versions, which should say something about the power of Artillery in 2011. MY BLOOD is another great entry in the Artillery catalog and is one of most traditionally heavy releases of the year so far. If you’ve ever been a fan or never been a fan, put MY BLOOD on your “check it out list.”