The Dutch extreme metal band Bleeding Gods has been making a name for itself with the deadly force of an avalanche. Even though the group is not a newcomer to the national stages and some of its members are veterans in the Dutch metal scene (guitarist Ramon Ploeg, ex-Houwitser), the intensity with which label Nuclear Blast picked them up was a bit surprising. As a result, the expectations for the second full-length Dodekathlon are high.
The title of the record, “Dodekathlon” represents The Twelve Labors of Greek hero and half god Heracles. Bleeding Gods takes its inspiration from mythology and expresses it through (what yours truly would label it) symphonic/blackened death metal. A tricky field to operate in, since a broad range of comparisons to the established titans such as Behemoth, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Dimmu Borgir and Septicflesh are easily made.
One cannot deny that influences from the bands mentioned above are definitely present throughout the record. Especially the track ‘Hera’s Orchard‘, leans heavily on a Behemoth-y guitar sound to a point that it is disturbing, but in general, the Dutchies manage to stay clear from an overtly borrowed sound.
By no means are any of the tracks on the record unimpressive. The guys and girl have written dynamic, crushing tunes like ‘Multiple Decapitation‘, and the musicianship oozes from the screaming solo’s and the pounding drums. Yet nowhere I’ve managed discover the real face of Bleeding Gods. The band incorporates all: technicality, heavy symphonics, solo’s, groovy riffs, but does not manage to lift the music to the next level nor leaves an undeniable BG-stamp on it.
With Dodekathlon, Bleeding Gods deliver a decent record and it will surely boost the band’s status in their homeland and beyond and it will open new doors for them. Personally, I still need to discover the added value of this band to what’s already out there, but perhaps in time I will.
Words by Laetitia
Label: Nuclear Blast
Release date: January 12th, 2018
01. Bloodguilt (Nemean Lion)
02. Multiple Decapitation (Lernaean Hydra)
03. Beloved by Artemis (Ceryneian Hind)
04. From Feast To Beast (Erymanthian Boar)
05. Inhuman Humiliation (Augean Stables)
06. Birds Of Hate (Stymphalian Birds)
07. Saviour Of Crete (Cretan Bull)
08. Tyrannical Blood (Mares Of Diomedes)
09. Seeds Of Distrust (Belt Of Hippolyta)
10. Tripled Anger (Cattle Of Geryon)
11. Hera’s Orchard (Apples Of The Hesperides)
12. Hound Of Hell (Cerberus)