Finland are renowned for producing some top metal talent, we only have to look as far as bands like Nightwish, Lordi, Children of Bodom, Apocalyptica, and HIM (just to name a few). Forming in 2017 and fresh on the metal scene, Bloody Falls have dropped their debut album, ‘Thanatos‘, and it’s definitely one you’re going to want to get your hands on. Valkeakoski is the home of this rag-tag group of metalheads, however there’s a bit of a twist to the usual Finland makeup of this band; vocalist Tanawat Thongprem comes from the tropical jungles of Thailand, whilst guitarist Stavros Mathios comes from the salty, garlicky Rhodes, Greece.
As to be expected with a debut album, it isn’t without its flaws, however they’ve set up a solid foundation on which they can build upon and (who knows), one day could possibly join the ranks of the elite talent out of the country.
If you’re unfamiliar with who Bloody Falls are, they are comprised of band members Thongprem (lead vocals), Mathios (lead guitar), Marko Mäkinen (secondary guitar), Mika Lehtinen (bass guitar), and Rami Vartiainen (drums).
The album opens with, We Rise Again, packing heavy punches and high intensity guitar work. Vocally pleasing, although at times the growls come across in a way that makes it hard for the listener to decipher what he’s saying – but that’s okay, because there’s enough happening throughout the track to distract you from that fact. As for mentioned, these guys are still finding their feet, so there’s going to be slips. Think of it as Frankenstein’s Monster … only without the ugly part!
The tempo dials up a notch with My Halo Of Flame, displaying a combination of speed and power. The darker tones hidden within the corners of this track aid in creating a different atmospheric feel throughout the tracks duration, and with some sublime guitar work thrown over the top paints a darkened metal performance that will excite all metal fans!
Amongst the Living Dead is as morbidly named as it is performed – similar darker tones highlighting the bands heavier sound heightens the overall delivery. There’s somewhat of a manic pace being set within this track, synonymous to that of the tracks title. Bloody Falls nail the guitar work, yet again (especially in the vocal breaks), with Nocturnal. Instrumentally speaking, it’s definitely their strongest suit, and they’re manipulating that to its fullest capabilities.
The album’s title track, Thanatos, is as maniacally played as the atmosphere it presents itself within. Vocally, they’ve gradually improved throughout the album’s progression, however yet again it’s the instrumental performance of Bloody Falls that takes the lead; some of the cleanest guitar work you’ll hear throughout the entire album is within this track – you won’t be disappointed.
Laced with eerie ambient tones, New Empty strips back the instrumentals heaviness (slightly) and the vocals hit the spotlight, allowing for Thongprem to demonstrate his capabilities. Cry for Freedom opens with the combination of soothing piano and spoken word, painting a somewhat angelic introduction, before a sudden explosion of instrumental brings the heavier tones back into the fold. The overall performance of this track makes it one of the albums strongest.
Die with Honor is made by the tenacious drum work of Vartiainen, who showcases both prowess and speed. Drummers rarely get the accolades they deserve, so take a bow! The guitar is kept rather simple (compared to previous tracks), and the vocals are also lifted to the forefront somewhat in this track also.
Defiance maintains the quick tempo (probably more so than we’ve heard for a while), further showcasing the instrumental talents of Bloody Falls. The guitar work, yet again, not just standing tall but running well ahead of the pack.
The album rounds out with Virtual Reality, which dials the tempo back to a more stable pace, and delivers one of the most coherent performances of the album; especially vocally. They’ve definitely left everything on the table with their final performance, making it one of (if not the best) performance on the album, which has been fairly solid throughout.
For Bloody Falls first outing, and debut album, they’ve produced something of substantial quality. Is it flawless? No. What they’ve done, however, is set down the beginning foundations of which they can now build upon, and given time these guys can become something magical. Truly.
‘Thanatos’ is available now, get your hands on it HERE!