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Barabbas | ‘Demo’

2015 kicks in with a new band emerging from Dublin, and a first demo that shows enthusiasm and ability.

The first thing that impresses are the demented vocals on here courtesy of Jakk Penders from the excellent Dead Aeon. He’s lent them his pipes and recorded this demo as well.

The riffing in here is pretty much straight out chunk and pummel, with a bit of groove and the odd nod to the older classics like ‘Burn My Eyes’ occasionally (there’s a nod to ‘Blood For Blood’ in here).

I’m going to completely overlook opener ‘This Is My Hour’, because I’ve heard that main riff a thousand times played back to front, up and down. It’s Heavy Metal Demo 101 I’m afraid, and they need to be writing better than that.

Which luckily they do in ‘Dormant Wings’ and the much better ‘Heretic’. Penders’ vocals help a lot here, giving character and a certain crazed edge to it all. Whether they truly fit this band’s music is open to question, and yes, it’s a stopgap position. At the moment it’s like putting Burzum on top of Killswitch Engage, and while these are some great vocal takes, Barabbas need to find an identity of their own. I’m sure they know this.

So yeah, ‘Heretic’ is the best of these three tracks and gives an indication of the best direction they could go. The riffing is detailed and interesting, the drum work solid and intense, and it has the right idea about breakdowns. It reminds me a little of Warpath.

We’ll reserve fuller judgement for a more developed recording, but it’s a decent start, and the enthusiasm is audible in these tracks, which is more than many manage.

Time to consolidate, rehearse and return. It sounds like they’ll be having something decent to offer.

Earl Grey ::: 01/01/15

One Comment
  1. Thanks for the very kind words Ciaran. Looking forward to seeing what these guys do next and was an absolute pleasure working with them.

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