3 Inches of Blood
Here Waits Thy Doom

So, album number four from Vancouver’s heavy metal stalwarts has some major changes from 2007s Fire up the Blades; a change in label from Roadrunner to Century Mediocre, the departure of ‘harsh’ vocalist Jamie Hooper, bassist Nick Cates and Saxon fighting drummer Alexei Rodriguez, a change from Joey Jordison (Slipknot) to a Jack Endino (High On Fire) production and cover art from a 1994 bootleg black metal album instead of the over the top orcs and swords artwork of yore.

And Here Waits Thy Doom ends up being the best album 3 Inches of Blood have released.

The most tangible change is Cam Pipes delivering virtually all the vocals with his love it or hate it Rob Halford/King Diamond wail, with guitarist Justin Hagberg (who shares bass duties with guitarist Shane Clark on this album) injecting the very rare, gruff rasp here and there. There is no where near harsh/clean the balance of the last two efforts, as Pipes pretty much owns the show, so while the music still has a the bands raucous balance of thrash, melodic death metal and traditional heavy metal, the vocals are now pure heavy metal. The shift in production makes for a more appropriate, organic’ ‘heavy metal’ record, rather than Jordison’s modern sheen, and everything comes together perfectly on the strength of some just killer song writing.

Right off the get go, anthemic, rousing opener “Battles and Brotherhood” has a “Deadly Sinners/Destroy the Orcs” classic, live favorite vibe to it, signaling 3 Inches of Blood have no intentions of letting their adversity drag them down, instead letting it fuel the band to a collection of truly memorable and enjoyable, rollicking metal. Each one stands on its own catchy, blood pumping merit, imbuing Maiden and Priest crossed with classic In Flames, early Metallica and modern metal. From the classic chorus of “Rock In Hell”, the addictive thrash harmonies of personal favorites “Silent Killer”,  and rousing “Fierce Defender”, the short, urgent stab of “Call of the Hammer” proggy “Snake Fighter” and pure thrash of “At the Foot of the Great Glacier”- all the tracks just ooze metal from every note, with grin inducing glee and guilty pleasure, but without forced antics or tongue in check vibe that bands like Destroy Destroy Destroy seem to have.

Of note is the presence of three longer tracks in the bluesy, groovy “Preachers Daughter” (6:48), “All of Them Witches” (6:43) which both have some killer Hammond work, and rumbling closer “Execution Tank” (7:34) adding an even more epic dimension to the bands already fist pumping, head banging antics.

Your enjoyment of this album may be based on your tolerance of Pipes’ Pipe’s, but even for a growl lover like me, he manages to walk the thin line between grating and fun, but when there are riffs and solo this catchy and downright enjoyable, I can overlook the vocals and take this album for the rollicking good time it is.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
September 18th, 2009

Comments

  1. Commented by: samthebrutal

    This album smokes! 3 Inches of Blood keep getting better.


  2. Commented by: timshel

    What album is the cover art taken from?


  3. Commented by: Ryan

    Wasn’t that impressed when I heard the initial tracks online, but bought it regardless and this album slays for sure. Right on point, Erik.

    and I think the 1994 bootleg thing was a joke. and I was thinking the same thing when I saw it, but i like it though fits with the entire feel of the album. Been digging the last few things that have rolled out of Endino’s studio.


  4. Commented by: xbenx

    Going downstairs NOW to put this on!


  5. Commented by: ceno

    Their last two albums were good but I got tired of them pretty soon. However I feel like checking the new one due to this review. Thanks, Erik.


  6. Commented by: Tom

    RIP Brian Redman


  7. Commented by: Old Pick Axe

    Cam Pipes is the goddamn man. If you have never seen 3IOB live, there is a hole in your life that seriously needs to be filled.


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