Blood Drive (Relapse)
By Rick Ecker
ASG emerge from the sandy shores of North Carolina to deliver their fourth full-length and Relapse debut, Blood Drive. These 12 songs are catchy, memorable, and sound like classics as soon as you hit play, but with the band being around since 2001, you wouldn’t expect anything less.
“Avalanche” comes at you with riffs galore, a chorus that’s hard to get out of your head, and great lyrics like “All the gods are crazy/can’t you see.” On “Blood Drive,” the band has the distortion and volume turned up and bashes its way through another mind-blowing bunch of riffs and more great lyrics like “Got a long list of foes and a shorter list of friends.” “Day’s Work” is a dense song that has the heavy thud of Jane’s Addiction back in the early ’90s and keeps the intensity going strong with crunchy guitar playing and great vocals that bring to mind Perry Farrell on a good day.
“Castlestorm” has more of a heavy metal sound than the rest of the album and rocks pretty damn hard. “Blues For Bama” turns the volume and speed down for a slower jam that brings in some prog rock and still manages to keep the intensity. “Children’s Music” starts out with a beautiful acoustic passage and then erupts into a thundering track that has so much going on it’ll blow you away. “Hawkeye” and “Stargazin” are tight and hard-hitting rock songs that sound great cranked up loud. The acoustic “Good Enough To Eat” closes off the album full of energy.
With the heavy riffs, incredible power and talent, sweeping vocals, and different genres all mixed together, this will please a lot of people and find ASG a deservedly larger fan base. Don’t let this band slip away from you: Grab a copy, turn up the volume, and get ready to have your ass kicked.