Straight out of the hills of East Tennessee ARCHAIC KNOWLEDGE bring the thunder with their latest release ‘Blade Of The Judge’. Proving that metal in the mountains is alive and well.
Opening with a pounding thunderstorm and a haunting riff the album kicks off with the track “Dance Of The Dead”. A mood setter from the start “Dance Of The Dead” has a little something for everyone. It has heavy guitars, screeching vocals and a pounding bottom end. The album transitions nicely to the second track “Gatekeeper”. “Initially “Gatekeeper” reminded me of the SOUNDGARDEN classic “Rusty Cage”. It has a very similar feel and guitar riff. Also the vocals have a ton of energy. “Gatekeeper” has radio single written all over it.
The third track on the album is the title cut “Blade Of The Judge” featuring a lot of tempo changes and different moods, this is the kind of song that makes me enjoy heavy metal. Songs like this tell a story, they build you up and they pull you back down. “Rise Of Evil” is a sludgy mood setting instrumental aside form a chant of “Rise” building slowly as the song reaches its pinnacle. The effort then bleeds nicely into “Fall Of Man”, a true southern metal bruiser. “Friends” is a killer groove rocker with a ton of melodies and a catchy vocal delivery. I can really hear a lot of influences in this one.
“Unbreakable” is another southern rock monster. With a simple melody and groove that implore you to nod your head and tap your foot. It has a killer rhythm. Can anyone say Geezer Butler on the bass? Next up we have “HNN” a heavy grinder that plods along like a tank on the battlefield. This all leads us to the album closer “Death”. A near 12 minute epic with left turn after left turn. serving up tempo changes, some killer guitar riffs and a surprise around the 8 minute mark that had me scratching my head for a second, or 30. But it’s all a part of the plan. What an amazingly beautify outro section, WOW!
With ‘Blade Of The Judge” ARCHAIC KNOWLEDGE burned a clear path letting us know who they are and what they intend to do. The effort offers just about everything you can ask for us a southern metal album. It has groove, hooks, tempo changes, singable vocals and a foot stomping rhythm section. Pick up a copy at all major online retailers and help keep metal in the mountains heavy!!