NYHC (New York Hard Core for those new to the game) has always built its reputation on the short sharp shock. Get in, get down, get out. Lyrically it’s the same. Not a lot of pontificating or fancy $25 words when a simple “Fuck you!” would do, and this is BLOODCLOT’s home turf on Souls, no doubt about it.

Bolstered by a lineup featuring current and former members of CRO-MAGS, QUICKSAND, AGNOSTIC FRONT and MADBALL, these four horsemen couldn’t be more NY if they tried, ancestrally deep in the sewers, squats and boroughs as they are. Throat man John Joseph leads the charge on the title track, barking and spitting while not less than 2 minutes passes before the first gang chorus arrives, the rhythm section of Setari / Morgenthaler bouncing yet brutal, Tom Capone’s air raid guitar strafing the floor and battlefield with abandon. There’s definitely a more Metal ™ vibe thus far, early SLAYER, NUCLEAR ASSAULT – though not as sharp and biting as the latter.

After the abbreviated yet incendiary ‘Unhinged’, we’re whiplashed with ‘War Castles’, thus far the most reminiscent of Joseph’s time in CRO-MAGS, but with his current cohorts the man sounds energized, a testament to the fact that playing music with friends who’ve seen you through the ups and downs is one of the best feelings ever. ‘Save The Robots’ conjures the almighty WARZONE in spirit, but when the bridge hits at 1:04 is when we know for a fact that BLOODCLOT’s no longer content to be just the sum of its parts, a sentiment that continues into ‘Infectious’.

Actual singing (!), an almost OZZY riff circa early/mid ‘90s rolling and chugging, the low end that escapes most hardcore bands, and there’s Capone, dancing all over the fretboard and seemingly having the time of his post-QUICKSAND life. Ending with a passionate cover of the DC band that set the Empire State (and the entire music world) on fire, BAD BRAINS, it’s clear the Souls in BLOODCLOT aren’t going anywhere. Good, because freakin’ music needs more bands like this, not less.
Review By: Lord Randall

Upstate Records
4 / 6