UK band BLOODYARD have been around since 2010, and are a self-described death metal band. They have two EPs to their name so far. “Darkest Rage” is the most recent of these, and has been commercially available since the summer of 2015.
I understand that this band have a slight buzz going for them, and have landed slots at some fairly prestigious events. Which is good going for a band with a mere two EP’s to their name. As for the music, I do hope they get a bigger budget or better tools to play with next time they decide to record some material.
Just how good the core songs on this EP actually are is hard for me to decide. Death metal and extreme metal isn’t quite my strength, and the rather lackluster sound quality that is an ongoing feature here makes it difficult to judge. Opening song Epitaph comes across as the most interesting of the four by far, coming across as something like a bastard child between late 80’s thrash metal band Sabbat and veteran black metal band Venom, with sound and atmosphere closer to the latter and sheer pace and intensity closer to the former. That it is just about impossible to hear that the lead growler in the band is a woman is one of those details I’m unsure will be perceived as a compliment or the opposite, but they are dark enough and deep enough that they don’t come with any certain associations as far as gender is concerned.
The remaining tracks on this EP are fairly bombastic pieces, with sharp guitars shearing through the drum attacks and aggressive growl style vocals, at times reminding ever so slightly of a lo-fi budget version of Possessed. Some of the guitar movements strikes me as compelling and interesting enough to maintain a general interest, but it’s rather clear for me at least that the mix and production leaves so much to be desired here that this will ultimately be a production mainly of interest for existing fans and those with a particular interest for low budget productions. A plus is given for the atmospheric laden, calmer opening sequences on Sacred to None and Dead Relics, creating a nifty and effective contrast to the aggressive barrages that follows.
If you tend to enjoy extreme metal recorded and released with what I have to describe as a lo-fi, budget style mix and production, this up and coming British death metal band might be one worth investigating. Still, if you tend to enjoy music of this nature, I’d recommend seeing them live prior to purchasing this EP as the starting point of such an investigation, if possible.
My rating: 65/100
Epitaph; Sacred to None; Darker Rage; Dead Relics