Album Title: Blood and Faith
Label: Foul is Fair
This is an EP from Bleakwood, an Australian band playing black metal.
The production on this EP is heavy on the high-end, with cutting guitar and high-pitched snarled vocals. Subtle synths and audible bass round out Bleakwood's sound, along with a few spoken-word parts. The drums are relatively high in the mix, but are more than varied enough to earn the privilege.
Bleakwood's songwriting is pretty unique -- it combines chaotic passages reminiscent of Order From Chaos or Axis of Advance with (slightly) more conventional blasting/tremolo-riffing sections. The off-kilter yet catchy lead guitar work on this EP is quite distinctive, too. The floating synths in the background are also really well done. Keyboards would ruin most bands this aggressive, but somehow D. Nahum makes them work! Perhaps it's because atmosphere isn't ignored, here; "Disruption Hymn" on side B is full of unsettling doom sections and weird tempo and mood changes. "Blood & Faith" is more straightforward, but not too much so, as the raging drumming and insane leads give it plenty of punch. The chanting/drum section near the end is huge!
It's worth noting that this EP comes with a free mp3 download of both tracks, a nice touch which'll save you the trouble of ripping it from the vinyl.
This EP is good stuff. Fans of the aforementioned bands should enjoy it, as should fans of In Death I Become, Ironwood, Sword Toward Self, and the like. Recommended.
Standout Tracks: "Blood and Faith"