Hey there fellow tourists! Before we get on with things I have to tell you all that this Souvenir of the Week comes with a warning. If you hadn’t guessed from the title of the post or the album art provided above, this week’s souvenir is going to be pretty brütal due it being of metal music origins. You can blame my deep seated love for metal resurging on the Blood Moon. Anyways, if you’re still interested then continue to read on about 3 Inches of Blood and their album Advance and Vanquish.
3 Inches of Blood is a metal band from Victoria, British Columbia and was formed in 1999. Since then they have opened for heavy metal royalty Iron Maiden, played Ozzfest, and released three EPs, eleven singles, and five albums. Advance and Vanquish is the second of their five albums and came out ten years ago in 2004. If you ever played the video game Brütal Legend then you probably heard the songs Deadly Sinners and Destroy the Orcs that are off of this album. The former is also featured in the video game Tony Hawk’s Underground 2, and the latter is actually a re-recording from their debut album. As you can see their band’s resume is quiet impressive, so let’s get onto the album itself.
Advance and Vanquish is a completely solid metal album that can fall into multiple metal sub-genres such as power metal, thrash metal, and speed metal. Unlike the last metal album I discussed, Murder the Mountain, this album is all about speed and power. There really isn’t any slow driving or sludgy sounding tracks off of this album. Instead you’ll find rapid guitar riffs and machine gun like drums accelerating your puny mortal soul to past the speed of light. Songs like Swordmaster, Destroy the Orcs, and Isle of Eternal Despair (Upon The Boiling Sea Pt.III) almost make your fingers bleed while trying to play air guitar along and break your invisible drum sticks.
The vocals also have a classic metal sound to them but are still able to mix in a new trash-like flavor with the addition of harsh vocals. Clean vocals by Cam Pipes, a very appropriate last name if you ask me, are very reminiscent of the power vocals of Iron Maiden lead vocalist Bruce Dickinson and Judas Priest lead vocalist Rob Alford, and add a sense of grandness to the songs. While clean vocals add extra power to this album the harsh vocals are what really make this album truly brütal. The harsh vocals are present on all tracks but they really display their brütality in tracks like Dominion of Deceit, Lord of the Storm (Upon The Boiling Sea Pt.II), and Wykydtron. If you think those types of vocals are harsh on your ears then imagine how bad they are on the singerJamie Hooper. Apparently he could not perform with the band during the 2007 Ozzfest because he was warned by doctors that if he didn’t rest his voice he would permanently damage it.
If the intense instrumentation and vicious vocals haven’t completely sold you on how solid of a metal album Advance and Vanquish is then I’m certain the lyrics will seal the deal. This album covers topics such as defeating the enemies of metal music (Deadly Sinners), a creature that hunts/kills/eats human (The Phantom of the Crimson Cloak), pagans rising up against the church (Dominion of Deceit), getting revenge upon monsters from the works of J.R.R. Tolkien (Destroy the Orcs), and much more. The song names alone could inspire cover art for the magazine Heavy Metal.
Some of my favorite tracks off of this album are : Deadly Sinners, Destroy the Orcs, Swordmaster, and Isle of Eternal Despair (Upon The Boiling Sea Pt.III). If you want to get into more intense metal then I highly recommend this album since it has all the makings of a solid metal experience, if not then I’m hope for your sake that the Dark Lords of Metal aren’t too displeased with you. Thanks again for reading this brütal blog post and I’ll see all of you headbangers next week.
Photo credit: http://sepulturadorock.blogspot.com/2011/07/3-inches-of-blood-advance-and-vanquish.html