Occult rock seemed to explode in our little world of extreme music with the likes of Ghost, Orchid and Purson to name but a few hitting it big.
Bloody Hammers is a band that seems to have been neglected within that sphere, hailing from the mountains of North Carolina and watching interviews with the band, you can just tell that the environment and local culture influences their occult themes. Formed back in 2011, `Lovely Sort of Death’ is their 2nd full length on Napalm Records and 3rd in total so not bad in 2011.
The album opens with one of the singles `Bloodletting on the Kiss’, from the get go you get a distinctly 80’s vibe, building the songs and themes with electronic sounds mainly that of a synthesiser to get an atmospheric experience although the chorus feels too long coming and lacks a much needed punch.
The 3rd song, `The Reaper Comes’ is far more what you expect from an “occult rock” outfit it’s exceedingly dark, atmospheric and moody. It builds up the song and although theirs no real peak within say a chorus, it keeps your attention throughout and definitely you can hear the influence of a certain Swedish band in this song.
Following the very 80’s Gothic romantic opening tracks, the album picks up pace and yeah ok it never goes into a Thrash Metal outing yet it picks up tempo and becomes more entertaining to listen to, yet it doesn’t lose the atmospheric, dark and brooding tone of a Gothic Occult rock album. Songs like `Stoke The Fire’, `Ether’ and `Astral Traveler’ will go down perfectly amongst both sets of music lovers alike.
I loved their last album `Under Satan’s Sun’ and `Lovely Sort of Death’ had quite a bit to live up too, although on the 1st listen the first two tracks didn’t grab me and perhaps maybe I’ve never really picked up a `Sisters Of Mercy’ album or a `The Cure’ album it wasn’t really my cup of tea yet the album as a whole is a ideal blend of 80’s Goth, occult rock and psychedelic rock. Looking at Occult rock music in the modern era, you’d think that someone would put this to a soundtrack for an occult horror film, certainly this how Black Sabbath was born?
8/10- Keeping Occult rock going, certainly a grower of an album.
Stand Out Tracks:
`The Reaper Comes’, `Stoke The Fire’ and `Astral Traveler’.
1. Bloodletting On the Kiss
2. Lights Come Alive
3. The Reaper Comes
5. Infinite Gaze to the Sun
6. Stoke the Fire
8. Shadow Out of Time
9. Astral Traveler
Bloody Hammers on the net: