Review Summary: With As Blood Runs Black debut album, the title of track eight ''(Chug Chug)'' pretty much sums up the entire disc.
Metal, along with Pop-Punk, can be one of the most generic genres out there. Both genres have a lot of records that have a ''13 in a dozen'' feel to them. However, every once in awhile you come across a record that brings something new or refreshing to the table, or a band executes something so well that, while it has been done before, it still is definitely worth a listen.
I've heard a lot of praise when it comes to As Blood Runs Black and their debut, "Allegiance". It was supposed to be killer, in-your-face metal. Supposedly a band of the latter category described above. And who knows, maybe this might also include some original elements? Fact is, that is not true. Allegiance is completely standard fair modern day American metal.
chugging, heavily distorted guitar riffs, some double bass abuse, screamed vocals, add some hardcore-influenced breaks and then a neat clean break somewhere in the middle of the record. It's a pretty basic recipe for lots of metal releases today, and As Blood Runs Black doesn't stray from it. Yes, there can also be some guitar solos found on this record. Thing is, the main purpose of a solo is to make a song more fun and/or interesting to listen to, to truly add something to a song. I've listened to this record a total of four times and now that I'm writing this and listening for the fifth, apart from the lead in "The Beautiful Mistake", none of the solos are memorable, let alone catchy.
The clean song on this record, "Pouring Reign'', is supposed to be something of a breathe of fresh air in a continuous metal onslaught. It's kinda pretty and hey, we can actually hear some nice bass lines on here, but damn, how many times has this been done before?
What can be said about the lead parts, pretty much counts for the record as a whole. All these songs sound so much like the next, they're hardly individual tracks. The album becomes somewhat of a 40 minute assault of the same stuff over and over.
So what are some of the good sides of this album? I'll have to admit that each member of this band knows how to play their respective instrument. It should be noted that the band members are fairly young, and, while not the most extremely technical music in metal today, it's far from bad.
Being that this band only has one guitarist, the bass here stands out a little. (though this will sound crap when performing a solo live unless they have a rhythm guitarist with them) The bass isn't extremely audible but if you pay attention you'll hear some nice fills here and there.
Overall, you could say ''Allegiance" is a synonym for average. It's not horrid, but what the band members already have in musicianship, they still lack in actual songwriting.