Black Thoughts Bleeding – Stomachion

With the amount of CDs you get sent, sometimes it can be hard to tell bands apart. Hell, 95% of them are generic crap and deservedly go straight to the bin. So when bands like Black Thoughts Bleeding come along and blow all that other crap out the water, you know this could be the start of something special.

These German debutants only played their first gig in 2008 and two short years later they’ve already played the Summer Breeze festival and supported the likes of Walls Of Jericho and The Red Chord – not bad at all. Their sound is a mix of thrash and metalcore but before you dismiss them as another faceless scene band, consider the fact that their songs are just that – songs. Rather than collect a bunch of breakdowns plastered together with one riff, like a band-aid on a broken leg, these kids actually write proper songs, and that makes all the difference.

It really is hard to find fault with Stomachion, their debut album. Every track is akin to being thrown in a blender set to maximum whiplash. If anything, you have to pinch yourself to remember that this shredocalpyse of a debut comes from a band that’s only 2 years old; such is the maturity on display through the 12 tracks. Heartache-era Killswitch Engage influence? Check (Bloodred Struggle). Old Throwdown influence? Check (Hearts Got Broken and the title track). As I Lay Dying influence? Check (Nothing Changes). The only song that doesn’t work is Fade To Light, which feels too forced to be as touching as it is meant to be. But that really is the only poorly conceived song on the whole album. Everything else is a giant slab of pure modern metal.

I don’t want to give the wrong impression by saying this is a genius album, period. As debuts go, this is nowhere near, say, Lamb Of God’s New American Gospel or Metallica’s Kill ‘Em All. Those were genre-defining albums while Stomachion merely refines a genre that’s been around for a fair few years. But the potential on display here is so enormous that I’m going to put my neck on the line here and make the prediction that Black Thoughts Bleeding will go on to become one of the top metal bands of the next decade. Sure, there is a long way for them to go yet, and they need to step out of the shadow of their influences and assert themselves a little more. But a band that shows such adroit song-writing and passion on their debut album is surely meant for greatness. I might be completely off my rocker, of course, but for the sake of heavy music, let’s hope I’m not.


About Abhijeet Ahluwalia

Abhijeet Ahluwalia – I’m a freelance journalist who goes back and forth between London and Bombay. A huge metalhead, but I have an eclectic taste, from reggae to punk. Oh, and Manchester United are the greatest team in the world. Follow me on Twitter or drop me a line via Email.

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