Altareth – Blood (Magnetic Eye Records 2021)

Sweden’s Altareth released their debut album earlier this month, and what a debut album it is! The self-titled song draws you into a vortex of heaviness, bringing to mind the thunderous sound of Acid Mammoth. There are some glorious moments in songs like “Satan Hole and “Eternal Sleep”, where the band unapologetically wears its Sabbathesque roots on its sleeve. It is, however, in tunes like “Moon” and “High Priest” where the band truly starts to own the genre and find its own unique voice. Excellent work by the rhythm section, with a steady and menacing confidence, driving the tunes as it keeps pummeling all the way from the first note to the very last.

Friends of Warlung, Windhand and Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats will find in “Blood” an equally sinister version of the sludgy melodies that all of us in the world of heavy rock adore. Great work on the production as well, with a crisp sound and lots of heavy warm fuzz. Loved the professional artwork on the cover. In all, “Blood” has all the elements to take the band all the way to much bigger audiences. And for a debut album, well, let’s just say that this is an excellent example of how debut albums should sound and look like! Highly recommended!

Words by Ioannis Valiakos

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