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Battlecross: Rise to Power

A few years ago, I saw Battlecross perform at the Rockstar Energy Festival. The band put on an excellent show and stood out to many fans as a band to watch. The best thing about the band's performance was the way they not only brought intensity to every song, but also performed with great personality. I took tons of pictures at that show and could show you images of the band head banging, smiling, and having fun. I still remember the power of that show; I was especially impressed with the technical power of the guitar playing and the persona of lead singer Gumby. I've kept an eye on Battlecross ever since, always wondering when they would come around again.

This album is mostly consistent with everything else I've heard from the band and the overall sound is good. The guitars are as strong as ever; from track to track, they stand out for their harmonies, their solo passages, and their crisp and clean attack. I am also impressed with Alex Bent's relentless and technically proficient drumming. Gumby's vocals are as intense as ever, but they are too raspy and too harsh, lacking the personality I saw portrayed back at the Mayhem festival. For a band that describes itself as "Blue Collar Thrash," there's a surprising lack of playfulness about them. The music is often overly precise, as though being tracked by a very stern metronome. I'm not sure what a blue collar band is supposed to sound like, but thrash should feel a little looser. There's obvious talent here, but I can't hear the excitement and the power that I witnessed back at the Rockstar Festival. Battlecross is probably one of those bands that are just better in concert than on CD. I'd love to hear them try to capture their live sound on future recordings so that fans can experience a taste of what I saw a couple of years ago.

Track Listing:
1. Scars
2. Not Your Slave
3. Absence
4. Spoiled
5. The Climb
6. Blood and Lies
7. Bound by Fear
8. Despised
9. Shackles
10. The Path

Added: September 28th 2015
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Web Page
Hits: 1538
Language: english

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