Released: 2008, Earache Records
Reviewer: Mr. Rock
Teen California thrashers Bonded By Blood are a tightly wound bunch, proudly wearing their influences on their sleeves. It’s nice to see that while the band is trying to forge their own way through the metal jungle, they are wise enough to pay homage to their influences. The obvious comparison for the band, and for their debut CD FEED THE BEAST, is to thrash legends Exodus, however, I find that they actually sound more like Municipal Waste, except without the frat-boy sense of humour. Full on, jackhammer thrash that does not relent for the entire disc, FEED THE BEAST is a powerhouse of fury, never giving the listener a chance to catch their breath.
Vocalist Aladdin (love that name! – actually, it’s Jose Barrales, but the nickname is cool) is front and center here, guiding his troops through 14 examples of hard-core thrash. His voice matching very nicely with the band, Aladdin has his chops down. However, as fitting as Barrales’ vocals are, the real stars of the show are Lee and Juarez, the guitar duo working perfectly in sync. Drummer Carlos Regalado and bassist Ruben Domiguez hold down the bottom end of things with massive authority. They allow the guitar team to go off and do their thing, never having to worry about the rhythm team. The songs on FEED THE BEAST are fast and furious, and with the exception of the one sorta throwaway track (“Theme From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”…what’s the point of this one?), the songwriting is solid throughout.
The packaging and production on FEED THE BEAST are quite good, though I’m not sure why two discs are required when the second disc only has 2 tunes on it. But all in all a very good job and the listeners definitely get their moneys worth.
Bonded By Blood are a tight unit, delivering the goods with absolute conviction. Given the bands young age, they just might have a long, bright future ahead of them. The next disc should tell if they have what it takes.