Grenouer: Blood On The Face

Russian deathsters file off too many rough edges

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Formerly purveyors of brutal death metal, Russian quintet Grenouer have been moving away from their extreme roots. Blood On The Face is another firm step in that direction, characterised by mellifluous choruses and crisp, glossed production with a hint of electronic embellishment.

That’s not to say there’s nothing heavy about this record. Midday Show is all nu metal bounce and syncopated chug, while the title track lumbers into view with a great deal of intent, if not innovation. Therein lies the rub. While the band’s combination of alt-rock vocals and adequate, if derivative, musicianship are inoffensive enough, there is precious little here to raise the pulse or challenge anyone but the most casual listener.

An album-closing cover of Stone Temple Pilots’ All In The Suit That You Wear is a microcosm of Blood On The Face as a whole – lacking the sleaze and grit of the original, it’s perfectly serviceable but ultimately falls a little short of the mark.