ALBUM: Arcane Roots – Blood & Chemistry

Release Date: May 6th, 2013
Label: Play It Again Sam


It’s astonishing to think that Arcane Roots are only just releasing their debut album. It seems like the Kingston trio have been around making music and touring for years now, and that’s probably because they have. With two successful EPs and a string of exciting single releases as well as a Kerrang! compilation appearance and a bunch of UK festival slots, Arcane Roots have finally got around to producing a full-length album in the shape of ‘Blood & Chemistry’.

Just as the equally ambitious and emotional ‘Left Fire’ showed us, the band are able to please on all spectrums with a variety of aggression, melody and passion all executed as expertly as the likes of Biffy Clyro and Million Dead. ‘Second Breath’ showcases the heavier side of the band, which then effortlessly fades in to lighters-in-the-air acoustic ‘Held By Kites’ without affecting the flow of the album.

A relaxing harmony greets you at the beginning of ‘Energy Is Never Lost, Just Redirected’ before momentum throws you into a pit of explosion. The bass is heavy; it’s a randomly structured beautiful mess and it’s there to instantly excite any listeners right at the start of the album.

When lead singer Andrew Groves gets going, he really goes for it. ‘Hell & High Water’, ‘Belief’ and especially ‘Resolve’ allow him to propel his voice into the forefront of the music. The length of the tracks on ‘Blood & Chemistry’ allows Arcane Roots to pack them with different tempos with each song able to have several sections, especially in the excellent ‘Triptych’ which starts with a Protest The Hero-esque guitar-punishing riff before evolving into an intense rock-out for the band.

There doesn’t seem to be much room for mainstream success for Arcane Roots, but expect a surge in fans soon when the album becomes more widespread. But, if the music is this good and the hype continues, they might be able to break into a progressive rock market with similar vibes to the genre leading At The Drive-In. It’ll be difficult to avoid them at festivals this summer so the recognition will increase in no time, and with monster tracks like ‘You Keep Me Here’, it won’t take too long for the band to be comfortably backing up a larger status on the alternative UK rock circuit.

Written by Mike Heath