It’s not often that an album comes along, completely floors me and has me wanting to listen to it over and over. This is what makes Blood from In This Moment so special. After about two listens on Spotify I swung over to Amazon and bought the damn thing. Since then it’s been in constant rotation on my MP3 player.
I’ve known about In This Moment since catching their live show at Ozzfest 2007. Back then they were a very typical female fronted metal outfit. “Beautiful Tragedy” featured the crunchy guitars and airy/screechy vocal style of bands like Kittie and Evanescence. In short, there was nothing in the band to make me pay attention to them beyond their 20 minute set.
Fast forward to 2013. I’m checking out Otep’s latest on Spotify and I see In This Moment in the related artists category. I enjoyed Hydra, but not enough to stop me from checking out what I missed at Rock on the Range a few weeks ago. It was love at the second track.
While most female fronted metal bands have the same gimmicky sounding vocals, Maria Brink has developed a style that relies neither on light, high-pitched, clean singing nor guttural pseudo-masculine growls. Instead she half sings/half shouts like a white trash woman in a trailer park argument. You almost expect the lyric “It is to your baby, Cletus” to come out among all the self deprecating lyrics found on the album. While the lyrics are a bit cheesy and stereotypical (especially “Blood” with it’s “I hate you for all the good things you’ve done for me and love you for all the bad”) There’s no sense that she’s singing anywhere but from the heart. She’s not trying to appeal to the frat-boy partiers that made Buckcherry’s “Crazy Bitch” a hit, but really is interested in being a whore.
Of course, even though I’m extremely impressed by the vocal performance, no singer would be anywhere without a band and In This
Moment is as tight a band as any. What I’m digging most is the electronic pulses in the background and way the songs play almost as if a DJ is remixing them. It puts me in mind of Korn’s The Path of Totality that featured every song as a remix. The tracks are even put together in quite an interesting way: the heaviest, “Blood,” starts the album and then (for the most part) they descend and become lighter until by “11:11” we hear a slow ballad with Karen Carpenter vocals. The second half of the album is still heavy, but in a slower, more melodic way than the thrash and double bass first half.
But what I think makes the album so great is what is sure to turn hardcore metal fans hate it. The band mixes a heavy dose of electronic pop music in with the drop tuned, distorted riffs and pounding drums. I find it to be a breath of fresh air to hear a bit of Katy Perry and Lady Gaga on a heavy rock record, but I’m sure the danceability and anthemic lyrics are going to turn off most of the die hard fans of similar artist like Halestorm, Otep and Lacuna Coil.
My biggest complaint about this album is that in two years every other band is going to try to replicate this sound and it’s going to be just as blase as the NWOAHM movement.
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