Being signed by Manowar bassist Joey Demaio’s Magic Circle label certainly helped Chicago’s Bludgeon with their career, but it’s the strength of Mark Duca’s writing that makes the band’s second release such a memorable piece of heaviness.
Slightly less heavily handed than their debut – “Crucify The Priest”, the album certainly has more groove and the songs contain a much more dynamic structure, making this a bit easier to swallow, nevertheless, its still a heavy MF that uses Duca’s aggressive voice and the band’s technical proficiency to create an album that is relentless and punishing.
“Unholy Murder” has all of the band’s trademarks, a great sound accentuates all the right elements within the band, the drumming is immediately evident as being one of the band’s strong points, machine like double bass and fast snare work, the combination with Duca’s aggressive riffs comes off as early Fear Factory meets Pantera, this time his vocals are less harsh than they were on “Crucify” and he definitely uses more groove and interesting rhythms. That is most evident in the verses in the second track, “Carnage Begins”, he pronounces the lyrics with an edge and a great sense of rhythm, the combination with the massive guitar crunch works well.
In some tracks the band ups the speed; “Infidel” has a fast and brutal drum rhythm, while the single-mindedness of Duca’s lyrics serves as an added dose of poison.
There’s no give here, this is no melodic metalcore album, nor traditional thrash, Bludgeon mix up several genres and create something which is unique, its not an easy album to listen too, no easy hooks or melodic choruses, but its aggressive, very well-made, listen to it, and see if you have what it takes to like it.