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Album Review: Bloody Gears-“Frozen Rain”

I freely admit that I’m the person you all hate. I’m the music listener that obsesses over genres. I’m the guy that comes out of the woodwork to correct you when you call Johnny Hobo And The Freight Trains anarcho-punk.

But in my defense, stop saying it is. It’s folk punk. Anarchist lyrics don’t magically transform you into Crass.

So yeah, I’m awful and petty and I take the fun out of music. But even an organizational automaton such as myself can still get a bit of joy out of being confounded. Such is the case with Bloody Gears. Hardcore, metal, punk, and post-hardcore all make their appearances, though the latter is probably the most apt, if only for its broadness. Frozen Rain is a three song EP that suggests the rise of an interesting band on the horizon.

Opening with the title track, “Frozen Rain” suggests a lot of influences without necessarily fully conforming to any of them. It opens quietly with a few slowly strummed chords roughened with distortion. The vocals enter after a lengthy sixteenth note intro, sounding like a hoarse compromise between shouting and singing. A crescendo hits with a short melody before crashing into raging power chords. I can’t help but be reminded of Rites of Spring and other dinosaurs of emo, the relatively slow pace could’ve felt meandering, but instead sounds more like controlled rage.

“Bite the Hand” is the second track, and as the title suggests, takes the band in a more hardcore direction. But never so much that it feels jarring. This isn’t mimicry, it’s an exploration of the band’s sonic parameters.

The final track, “Tragic Mistake,” is the closest Bloody Gears gets to writing a conventional song on Frozen Rain. The song sports a strong verse/chorus composition, the chorus being of the simple hardcore style, a mere repetition of the title. But the monotony is broken by a chiming interlude in the middle of the song that adds a bit of flair and musicality.

Art is often the sum of its influences. Perhaps that’s why I enjoyed the musical scavenger hunt that is Frozen Rain so much. For the rest of the you though, that might not be enough. But even without the dissection, Bloody Gears proves themselves to be a capable and musically interesting band with a pension for experimentation. If that sounds good to you, and you haven’t heard Bloody Gears, Frozen Rain might just be the introduction you’ve been waiting for.

4/5