Yes, you guessed right. It’s John and Donald. The two guys who along with Trever Peres and Frank Watkins form the core of some of the best of the best in death metal, Obituary.
What is going on here? Have the Obi’s gone separate ways again? Oh, no, not this time around. This album, apparently has been in the making for years, the Tardy brothers wanting to do their own music – the music that doesn’t fit into the Obituary package of death.
Thing is…it’s really difficult to make something NOT sound like Obituary when John Tardy lets his voice loose over something. It becomes extremely obvious just how defining he is for the sound of Obituary, and if you're determined to try to do something different, you could say it’s a bit of a curse.
That said, only one track on ‘Bloodline’ could have been taken directly from an Obituary disc. Fate’s Call is a straightforward Obi-death metal burst.
The rest of the songs form an interesting mix of thrash with strong Metallica anno ‘Master of Puppets’ roots (the title track and to some extent Eternal Lies), southern bluesy stuff (Bring You Down), melodic speed/heavy metal with harmonies and acoustic guitars (!) (Scream Descendant).
Kiss is an obvious inspiration in the track Fade Away (only a zillion times more powerful than anything Kiss could ever come up with, but that’s just me…), and that seems to be the discipline for the two brothers: follow your inspirations and make some cool and rocking music.
I have to admit that at first I wasn’t convinced that this worked. But with a few listens, I’m there. The rock/blues/heavy/death combination has wormed its way into this aged reviewer’s heart and has left him humming tunes off it after the CD stops spinning.
This album rocks!