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3 Inches of Blood
ADVANCE AND VANQUISH
(Roadrunner)

To 3 Inches of Blood, the golden age of metal was the mid-1980s, when their current producer (Neil Kernon) and their cover illustrator (Ed Repka) worked with such legends as Queensrÿche and Megadeth. Perhaps thatís why their first album, Battlecry Under a Winter Sun (Must Destroy import, 2003), made its biggest splash in the UK, where they once shared a label with the Darkness. "Destroy the Orcs," a rampaging single from that release, reappears here as a fine example of the Vancouver actís violent revenge fantasies. "You see your familyís blood spilled on the ground/Thereís no trace of the Orcs to be found," mastermind Jamie Hooper shrieks, heading into battle with the bandís melodic chug by his side.

Hooperís exaggerated squeal and the groupís metalcore fashion sense have led some true believers to dismiss them as a parody, one aimed at punk kids to whom Judas Priest are little more than a trendy brand name. Nevertheless, this is a promising label debut: check out the spiraling guitars on "Revenge Is a Vulture" and the Kiss-quoting party anthem "Crazy Nights." And Kernonís production is ace enough to please even the most skeptical old-schooler.

(3 Inches of Blood open for Metal Church on Sunday, November 28, at Club Fuel, 105 Market Street, in Lowell; call 978-458-1288. They also open for Satyricon on Saturday, December 18, at the Palladium, 261 Main Street, in Worcester; call 508-797-9696.)

BY SEAN RICHARDSON


Issue Date: November 26 - December 2, 2004
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