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We all know this story. Major member of a band leaves. Band is forced to cope without him. Sometimes, they recruit someone else to feel the void, other times they just find it within themselves-that spark..release the next record and the rest, as they as, is fucking history. Here Waits Thy Doom (HWTD) is one of those records the only difference being; 3 Inches of Blood have been without Hooper for quite sometime now. Actually, dating back to the bands touring in order to support their previous record-Fire Up The Blades, Jamie Hooper was forced to sit out the whole tour cause of his voice. He is no longer with the band but 3 Inches of Blood have had ample time to reflect on their next course of action prior to and also during the recording of HWTD as whether to continue with the harsh vocals or scrap them entirely from their music.
Unlike most band who have or would have gone out in search for a replacement vocalist, this band did not. They assigned the part of Jamie to Justin-the band's guitarist, tweaked their sound a bit and voila! Here Waits Thy Doom!
While previously one would be somewhat confused with the kind of metal-subgenre 3IoB play, on this one, it is pretty straight forward. Unabashedly power metal..the kind Manowar would be proud of. Why, even some of the themes are so Manowar-ish. Kill for Metal, Die for Metal, Metal, Metal..METAL!! Given the circumstances, more room has obviously opened up in the vocal department for Cam Pipes to explore and boy, does he utilize this to the maximum. Of course it also helps having magnificently written riffs and solos to sing too. The first 3 songs on this are simply classics. Shane and Justin relentlessly churn out riff after riff and solo after solo. The riffs are raw, more melodic than their previous effort but also extremely enjoyable and catchy too.
In Here Waits Thy Doom, there seems to be a special consideration given to riff construction. No repetitive riffs here which is saying a lot on an album that is saturated with them. Each song seems to have a distinct riff. A well crafted riff played to perfection. Even the solos, follow this kind of trend and I fear going into details might render this review way too long.
Justin is obviously no Jamie but that doesn't mean that this album lacks the aggression that the band have been known for..Call of the Hammer and At the Foot of the Great Glacier..anybody?!(with the later being one of my favorites off this album). Rather than the duels that we have been accustomed to having, on this one, Justin seems more of, if I may say, complimenting Pipes. Hes vocals are not as harsh as those of Jamie, actually, his vocals sound more like those of Miland Petrozza. He though does chip in with the harsh lines where you felt Pipes vocals where becoming a bit too monotonous.
I bet, fans of 3IoB, when listening to this will always kinda anticipate Jamie's harsh vocals around the corner. Only that they don't surface (trust me, I waited). But thats just a small bummer cause these guys have outdone themselves, defied critics and made possibly the record of their lives and probably the power metal record of 2009 in Here Waits Thy Doom!