Bloodthirst - _Chalice of Contempt_
(Pagan Records, 2014)
by: Chaim Drishner (5.5 out of 10)
Polish veteran blackened thrashers Bloodthirst's newest offering _Chalice of Contempt_ is a persuasive display of semi-boring and watered-down black-tinged thrash metal of the violent kind, having so few interesting moments they could pass as virtually non-existing. There is almost not one single interesting riff to be found on this slightly chaotic, almost clueless, haphazardly assembled piece of metal, and the production doesn't help either.

Retro sounding and occasionally blasting their way through many of the songs, Bloodthirst seem to fail at keeping pace with the fast drumming, so there's always a feeling the guitars and vocals are legging behind the drum set, as if there's a proficiency gap between the drummer and the guitar players -- not a big gap, but nevertheless one that can be noticed. The old thrash paradigm is inherently present throughout the recording, but it seems like the guitar players can't handle their instruments in a manner that will complement the velocity of the pace-setting drums, plus there's a prevailing sense of rush, as if the riffs have not been fully thought through and the tightness of a song writing process well executed has been replaced by a slight ad-hoc improvisation. In other words: a half-realized, half-baked album.

The title track is one of the few highlights this album displays, with a Slayer-esque ferociousness and an opening riff that makes the song a classic thrash metal track. This is also where the pace is taken to the spectrum of slower velocities, where the band feel more comfortable, and as such they manage to yield a solid retro-thrash track that will shake some heads and make bodies move to the sound of the maddening guitar frenzy.

The vocals are the most commendable element throughout the recording, and they alone are the highlight that saves, with their blackened vileness galore, the recording from being a pretty forgettable effort.

You could kill half an hour by listening to _Chalice of Contempt_ and you might as well headbang to some of the more well-constructed tunes here, but overall this is not what you would have expected from these veteran musicians. They either need to slow things down a bit, focus on song writing more than they have or practice their instruments some more, and find their own singular voice within this niche. With good thrash metal increasingly becoming a scarce product in the metal underground, this is not a completely atrocious album; one can surely appreciate and absorb some good old thrash metal from it -- but in the long run, Bloodthirst do not provide any real, valid reasons why anyone should listen to what they have got to say instead of going back to the basics by exploring the godfathers of this subgenre like Slayer, Kreator and Sodom. And if you are into the violent stuff, there's always an option to check out Hypnosia's _Extreme Hatred_ for some massive, brutal thrash.


(article published 26/1/2015)

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