BloodRedSky: A Cross To Bear & Hell To Harness

Burly-sounding Finns make stoner rock a little bolder

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Heavy stoner rock has been reinvigorated by the low-slung bludgeons of Orange Goblin and Down’s recent output, which is why these Finns know they have to add a twist to appeal to aficionados.

Structurally, the songs are a little bland, but this quintet’s Nordic heritage challenges the perception of Southern metal coming from warmer climes, and with this comes a barbaric overtone to their bouncy rhythms: less “let’s get smashed”, more “I’ll smash you to a pulp”.

Their singer’s voice is abrasive, but the mood is conducive to their frostbitten neighbourhood. Phlegm rattles in the larynx, spitting out odes to rock and blood, directing a double layer of bluesy riffs and thrusting bass. Sometimes their frontman gets guttural to a death metal level, but always in keeping with their genre of choice.

Last track Skulltower plays out a rollicking instrumental that leaves a Karma To Burn flavour in the eardrums. Somewhere in Finland, burly blokes are raising the horns to their anti-glam exports.

Holly Wright

With over 10 years’ experience writing for Metal Hammer and Prog, Holly has reviewed and interviewed a wealth of progressively-inclined noise mongers from around the world. A fearless voyager to the far sides of metal Holly loves nothing more than to check out London’s gig scene, from power to folk and a lot in between. When she’s not rocking out Holly enjoys being a mum to her daughter Violet and working as a high-flying marketer in the Big Smoke.