Hemlock - _Bleed the Dream_
(Candlelight Records, 2007)
by: Jackie Smit (8 out of 10)
So, this is the band that stole Chimaira's mojo.

Yes, that's right. While it's likely that the aforementioned troupe's latest effort will virtually be drowning in hype before the year is through, those in the know would be far better served to seek their modern American metal jollies on Hemlock's latest full-length. Spawned under the garish neon lights of Las Vegas, Nevada, _Bleed the Dream_ is the quartet's third album in their thirteen year existence, and while its influences read like a list of the usual suspects (Testament and Pantera being particularly conspicuous), the real demarcation in this instance is the arduous conviction of their performance.

Trust me -- these boys do not fuck around. "My Eyes Itch" signals the start of the incursion, lashing out with all the corrosive intensity of a menopausal rhino. Hardcore grooves bleed effortlessly into more traditional -- if purposefully atonal -- riffing, and vocalist Brandon Crane barks every word like he's staring down the combined barrels of a firing squad. "Weakman Suicide" sees the band raise their game even further, dropping pitch-perfect hints of off-kilter melody at exactly the right spots. By the time the band get round to the album's title track some six songs later, anyone who hasn't bought into their gritty take on testosterone-addled aural violence, would probably be better served sticking to their fathers' Bon Jovi vinyls.

Contact: http://www.myspace.com/hemlock

(article published 9/9/2007)

7/2/2008 J Smit 7 Hemlock - No Time for Sorrow
10/16/1997 A Wasylyk 6 Hemlock - Crush the Race of God
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