Album Review: The Bloodtypes – “Just Your Type”

The Bloodtypes are a four piece, female led prog-punk garage band from Portland, Oregon. Musically, they remind me a lot of The Epoxies, which makes sense since one of The Epoxies is now a member of this band. For those of you who have never heard, or heard of, The Epoxies they were a very unique, heavily 80’s influenced prog-punk band that were also from Portland. The biggest difference between the two bands, besides the different vocalist, is that The Epoxies used a whole lot of synthesizer and The Bloodtypes rely more on guitar, bass and drums. I don’t mind that the two bands sound kinda alike, I’ve missed The Epoxies since their break up back in ’08 and this band could easily fill that void.

The Bloodtypes vocalist, who goes by the name Schneck Tourniquet and is occasionally accompanied by a male singer, sounds great on all of the songs and musically the other members are very talented also. The downside is that some songs on here sound as if they were recorded in a garage. The press release that accompanied this album said that they wanted to capture their live energy so maybe live in a garage is the sound they were going for. If so, well done. Now on to the songs…

My three favorite songs on “Just Your Type” are “Gotta Get Out”, “Until It Bleeds” and “Radiation Sickness”.

The first time I heard “Gotta Get Out” I wasn’t paying complete attention and to me, it sounded like a lot of the other songs on here. But when I went back and listened to it again, I heard something different. To me, the music on “Gotta Get Out” sounds like a Michale Graves-era Misfits song; punk with a little bit of the 50’s sound. This song would fit well on most psychobilly albums and it’s got a cool little part where the male and female vocals come at you from different speakers. Cool song, definitely the best of the upbeat ones.

The next song is titled “Until It Bleeds”, and this one is the only slow song on the disc. I like this one a lot because you can really hear Schneck Tourniquet sing on this track, and her voice takes on a haunting quality that isn’t really noticeable elsewhere on this album. Musically, “Until It Bleeds” has a 90’s alternative sound to it and the jangly guitar used throughout sounds a lot like the one used in The Wipers song “No One Wants An Alien”. The Wipers are also from Portland so it could be a tribute to them, or this could be a cover of a long lost Wipers song.

The final song that I’m going to mention is the closing track “Radiation Sickness”. This is another fast paced track, like most of the album, but on this song The Bloodtypes change it up a bit. At about the midpoint of the five-minute song, the music stops and the sound of falling water comes in; it could be rain or maybe one of those showers that you always see people who may be contaminated being rushed into in movies.  Soon the music and vocals return, and slowly and melodically they build back up to a speed just a little bit slower than where they were when they stopped the first time. This is another song where you can hear Schneck and her male counterpart clearly. Good stuff.

Overall, I enjoyed this album but I ran into a problem that I’ve run into many times in modern punk rock. All of the songs were good but half of them sounded very similar (pretty much the same tempo, not a lot of range in the vocal delivery, etc,) and they started to blend together. But the intros and the order in which the songs appear on the disc helps out a lot with that issue. If you listen the album in proper sequence, three tracks is the longest stretch of similar sounding songs before something unique shows up. The first time I played “Just Your Type” I had it on random and got five songs in a row that were a lot alike.

I give this album a 3.5 out of 5 stars rating and recommend it to anyone who has ever enjoyed “The Epoxies” and other similar sounding bands or just wants to hear something different because The Bloodtypes are far from normal, at least musically.

3/5 stars

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