Released: 2016, Napalm Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
When I was young I would watch Hammer horror movies and old 1930s horror movies featuring Lon Chaney Jr and Bela Lugosi late at night on my old black and white TV. This was before CGI style special effects. I was fascinated by these movies at the time and look back fondly on those time. That was a long time ago now and time has moved on, I soaked up many more influences, but for many people this is still a big influence on their lives. With music there is the 1970s rock world that is not all about prog dominating the world, then being destroyed by punk. There is another world of classic rock and doom. Bands such as Black Sabbath of course, who still influence many bands to this day. Blood Ceremony possible sum up the mix of Hammer horror, doom and psychedelia the most perfectly.
This brings me on to Bloody Hammers, a male/female duo who carry this particular metaphoric torch. I previously mentioned that time moves on with more influences, erm, influencing people. Bloody Hammers have taken the sounds of the much maligned late 1990s gothic Paradise Lost albums, mixed it with the old school Cathedral sounds to produce Lovely Sort of Death.
The album starts off slow, it is doomy after all, and I must admit I wasn't that enamoured with the first track. By the second track and third tracks the album starts to find it's feet and rewards the listener for taking the time and effort to absorb the music. I am a big fan of certain Tony Martin Black Sabbath albums from the 1990s, and a few songs remind me of Virtual Death from the Cross Purposes albums. It is probably the doomy keyboards.
Some albums are fronted loaded with the best songs and drag towards the end, this album, oddly is the reverse. It may just be my headset, although I have listened to this numerous times to the same effect. Later in the album the pace picks up, there are even some double bass drumming to heavy things up.
If you want some fast Gamma Ray action this is not for you, but if you want to spend some time on an album then Lovely Sort of Death will reward you each time you listen. Some of the modern doom bands are let down by rough growly vocals, with guitars too high in the mix. Bloody Hammers manage to keep it listenable and melodic.
Good stuff. I want the vinyl version which looks immense.