Where have Bleed From Within been?! The Glaswegian bruisers seemed to enjoy a steady rise since the release of their debut album ‘Humanity’ back in 2009. Relentless touring and support slots with just about every big name on the circuit had them pinned as potential frontrunners in UK metalcore, until they practically dropped off the radar after their last EP ‘Death Walk’ a whole four years ago.
Evidently, they’ve been busy honing their sound and tightening metaphorical screws, and have finally returned with ‘Era’ – a record that could well be a game changer for this band.
The opening spindly guitars of ‘Clarity’ give way to ear-splitting screams and gargantuan riffs – Bleed From Within are back with a vengeance, and they’ve lost none of their heaviness. They’re also keen to prove they’re no one-trick pony, as things get surprisingly hooky on ‘Crown Of Misery’ with its melodic chorus (“This void in me you’ll never see / It’s as dead as you are to me”, bellows frontman Scott Kennedy) and impressive rhythm sections from drummer, Ali Richardson.
‘I Am Oblivion, Pt. II’ is eerie and sinister, with a deep opening bass line courtesy of Davie Provan, and some ghostly cleans from Kennedy in the chorus. It’s a change from his usual caustic growls, but one he pulls them off seamlessly. ‘Alone In The Sun’, on the other hand, is a real circle pit classic, with a riff so explosive that you can practically hear the faces melting.
It can be difficult for metalcore bands to break the formula of chugs and breakdowns, and this band seem desperate to show they can do more than what’s expected of them. It’s occasionally to their detriment, though, as some of the more experimental tracks like the pithy ‘Shiver’ and ambitious ‘Alive’ fall a bit flat. It’s not that they aren’t good songs, it’s just that they don’t really fit here, and seem to be shoved in as an afterthought.
At 55 minutes long, the record does drag a little at times, and there’s definitely a couple of skippable tracks in there that could have been omitted to make the album snappier and an easier listen. But, the killer definitely outnumbers the filler, and the standouts are definitely worth the wait. Bleed From Within have really come into their own with this record, and this ‘Era’ could well be their best yet.