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Packing Power With A More Polished Approach - 90%

rjlacmagic, July 5th, 2007

Ever since seeing them for the first time a couple years ago, I've been a huge 3 Inches Of Blood fan. I love the combination of the two vocalists. Normally I'm not a fan of the metalcore-style scream, but the way Jamie pulls it off is actually bearable, even when unaccompanied by Cam. Thankfully it is, because this album is a lot more heavily weighted on his vocal ability than Cam's shown in the previous albums.

As I listened further, I could definitely tell that their sound has changed, even though it was somewhat subtle. Not only are Jamie's vocals more prominent, but every band member's sound seems a lot more polished both in technique and production. Normally I'm not a fan of bands losing their rough edges, but 3IoB has managed with this album to maintain a certain element of roughness to what sounds like a very polished album as a whole.

I honestly wasn't a fan of the intro... I think it seemed a little out of place in comparison to the rest of the album, and went on for a bit too long. However, once Night Marauders began, I knew I was in for the 3IoB I remembered. Night Marauders is actually one of my favorite songs off this album, mainly because I feel the track starts out with a bang but still manages to get better as it continues on. The album then continues on with nonstop headbanging potential. I didn't find a single song that I wasn't rocking out to, something I've now grown to expect from this band.

Overall I was very impressed with this album. It hasn't quite surpassed Advance and Vanquish for me, but I could really see this album growing on me in the near future. I'll be anxiously waiting to hear how their sound continues to evolve in future albums!

Track highlights, IMO, were Night Marauders, Forest King, Infinite Legions, Black Spire and The Hydra's Teeth.