Black Thunder – All My Scars (Club Inferno Ent.)Monday, 29th April 2019
These days, musicians become enthusiastic regarding diverse influences coming together in their approach to specific styles. No longer is one required to stay in a particular lane – if a blast beat or EDM/industrial slant aids the needs of a song, so be it. In the case of Italian band Black Thunder on their album All My Scars, the foundation of melodic heavy metal and hard rock expands into groove and thrash passages – but somehow doesn’t elevate the ten tracks into something special and long-lasting. Instead, the memorable factor takes a cringe-worthy sheen right out the gate, and doesn’t really improve as you delve deeper into the record.
The bluesy guitar playing and equal attention to swinging/groove tempos during “Angry Man” and “Black Rain” certainly gives off a Sabbath vibe, while also entertaining some 80’s melodic hard rock / 90’s groove-metal thoughts. Predictable sequences when it comes to drum/guitar synchronization cut off future hooks and melodies from retaining listener interest, beyond the basic/lifeless production values and tones – most evident on the call and response outing “Stop the Abuse”, where the band is trying to come off hard as the streets but instead sounds out of character and unintentionally humorous. The trio appear hesitant and mechanical when it comes to their performances – as if they are afraid to put more time and effort into these songs. The half talk/ half gang-driven vocals for “Disorder and Pain” distract from an energetic musical underpinning, the double kick /groove activities and bluesy lead break an engaging combination. At ten tracks and less than forty minutes, All My Scars shouldn’t be that hard of a listen – and yet it is because the basic elements aren’t strong enough to require most metalheads to be appeased.
Black Thunder really needs to go back to the drawing board, check out more of their influences, and drill deeper into the proper songwriting tools necessary to make listeners engage and care about their efforts. Otherwise, it’s a waste of everyone’s time and energy.