Blood in the Water Proves That Flotsam And Jetsam Are A Force To Be Reckoned With!
After playing a once-through of this disc and soaking it all in, the first thing I realized was that there was no filler. I don’t care what band it is, you always get filler (KISS made a career on it). Not this time, and that’s a statement when you have 12 songs clocking in at 54 minutes, not to mention a brutal trifecta that began with 2016’s self-titled release. These three distinctive releases have shown a constant, continual musical growth and bar-raising ferociousness that the band just can’t help but raise eyebrows. Hopefully, big tour promoters are taking note.
Straight out of the gates, the first four songs (Blood in the Water / Burn the Sky / Brace for Impact / A Place to Die) are everything you want from Flotz – brutal, fast, melodic, and straight up in your face. Ken Mary has really added a missing piece/link element to an already tight band, and his drumming here just solidifies the songs themselves. Within these first few songs (as well as later in the disc) you can clearly hear the legendary mesh of Smith/Murray sonically and effortlessly coming from Michael Gilbert and Steve Conley. This duo has easily surpassed the likes of Peterson/Skolnick, and are setting their sights on the crowns of Tipton/Downing, Hammett/Hetfield, and Hanneman/King. Just crank Undone and try to disagree.
With the assistance of Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, UDO), whatever you use to listen to these tunes becomes a deadly utility. Yet while this aggression is highly devoured, the band does showcase Eric AK’s vocal range during Cry for the Dead and Walls. The guy’s voice has gotten progressively stronger throughout the years, clearly emphasizing its power during melodic times, and remains distinctively world renown.
It’s time the band gets some real touring here in the US, and the last 5 years have shown exactly why. I think the only reason they are not on the current Megadeth trek, for example, is due to the fact Mustaine would be too intimidated by Gilbert/Conley, and they would give Lamb of God a frightening run for their money. Even in a support role, they would be a better fit than InFlames. InFlames? Seriously? No offense to the band whatsoever, but seriously? Both InFlames (here in the US) and Trivium don’t have the fan base Flotz has been growing.
Alright, I digress. July 4th marks the 35th anniversary of the acclaimed Doomsday for the Deceiver (it was the first in Kerrang!’s history to achieve the 6K rating), and amid a couple of stumbles, the band has raged on. Blood in the Water proves they are a force to be reckoned with as the crowns of metal are being rearranged. Overkill, Testament, Exodus take note ….you’ve just been surpassed.