Wild Throne: Blood Maker

[27 March 2014]

By Chris Conaton

Wild Throne’s debut EP, Blood Maker, kicks off with “The Wrecking Ball Unchained”, a metal song that, if not out and out great, at least comes very close to greatness. The song begins with a compelling drumbeat that consists simply of a floor tom rhythm and a softly chinking hi-hat. Vocalist Josh Holland comes in after about 10 seconds, and an organ quietly enters at around 25 seconds. Then the song essentially takes a couple of seconds to breathe before the full band kicks in with a heck of a catchy extended bass/guitar riff. Wild Throne wisely leans hard on this riff and pulls back to the quiet section at just the right moment a couple more times over the song’s tightly focused six-plus minutes.

It’s a shame, then, that Blood Maker’s other two tracks are so unfocused. “Shadow Deserts” finds the trio vacillating between highly technical instrumental freakouts and a pulsing, compelling bass-driven riff for the verses. There’s even a nice guitar-bass duet in the middle of the track. But none of the various pieces of the track really fit together to form a coherent song. Although “Blood Maker” hangs together reasonably well as a song, it’s missing any sort of compelling melody or riff. Without an anchor to build the song around, it’s essentially five minutes of metal that just sort of lays there. With “The Wrecking Ball Unchained” being as good as it is, though, Wild Throne has some strong potential for future albums.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/180195-wild-throne-blood-maker/