Bristol based Goth Punk quartet ASHESTOANGELS have come a long way; a matured sound and an ability to make every track a crowd pleaser, making How To Bleed their strongest album yet.
How To Bleed begins on a strong point with Horror Cult. It will hook you from the get go with its opening lines “we are the horror cult, the lost and lonely souls.” Moments later Horror Cult comes alive with ASHESTOANGELS‘ style and prowess. The setting rhythm is catchy, giving each band member clarity. Swinging percussion from drummer Jim Baber; hopping guitar notes from guitarist Adam Falkor; lower octave bass notes from Bassist Nico Veneré and the strong native voice of Adam Crilly. The chorus holds an anthemic attitude; strong in its delivery and catchy in its tune. Using the lyrics at the start of the track welcoming a sing along. The track holds its own and gives the nod that live, this will have the audience off the floor and singing in unison.
Following in the footsteps of Horror Cult comes Not In My Name. The transitioning between both songs feels off and the track itself feels out of place in terms of order. However, this is by far the strongest track on the album.
Not In My Name begins with wavering feedback from the guitar and an inviting drumbeat to build up the intro. The verse is aggressive, with essences of grunge and rock. Adam Crilly‘s shrieking adds to the feisty attitude. A quick break of clean and relaxed guitar sets up the coming chorus. A fast steady beat controls the melodic chord progression. Vocals high and bright with political content being sung. A powerful chorus indeed. Not In My Name is truly magnificent and leads to prove that ASHESTOANGELS are paving their way to top their previous work; a difficult task.
Find Hell follows. Beginning with all instruments on guard. Audio production is at a high quality, with crystal clarity shining through every tap of the Hi-Hat, depth of the kick drum, palm muted guitar notes and through a deep bass line. Everything is audible to the highest standard possible, nothing being drowned out or unnecessary noise bleeding out into the track. Find Hell as a track adds further proof of the growth ASHESTOANGELS have found within themselves.
Moving ahead to track 6 – Down We Go, it is definitely the album’s iconic track. In its soundscape lies many beautiful moments that will pull the listener side to side with emotional movement. It is almost symphonic in its melody and scope. Starting off with clean guitar notes that are precious to the ear. A burst of colour ensues, bright, harmonic melodies enriched with a wall of sound that flows of inspiration. A relaxing verse with sharp drum beats, a romance between bass line and guitar notes. Vocals completing the verse with the energy required and straight into that wall of sound for the chorus. Divine. Down We Go holds you until the very end and no moment falters. A masterpiece describes Down We Go perfectly.
Moving onto to track 10 – Light Me Up. Starting with a palm muted riffs, this track opens up in great fashion. Sustained chords that let the riff play in comfort of its abode. The drums set a steady pace with strong percussion, leading to the verse. Sustained chords remain letting progressing octave chords complete the tune. The chorus is upbeat in melody and will give audiences freedom to interact. It is another strong track that adds to ASHESTOANGELS repertoire.
Ghost In The Machine is a beautiful track, consisting of distant sounding piano notes and programmed drums with Adam Crilly taking centre stage as the focal point is his voice; the most important instrument in the track. Moments later an acoustic guitar enters, alongside a well constructed drum beat. Sections later there is a guitar solo, which feels slightly out of place to the atmosphere of the track. A slow paced track, full of emotion and heart.
How To Bleed is a great way to end a terrific album. It is a positive finale and starts in style. Single piano notes with a backing of strings, leading to a rock section that brings out the sharp style within ASHESTOANGELS, complimenting their own talents. The entirety of How To Bleed is focused heavily on what ASHESTOANGELS know how to do, connecting with the audience. Fans will love this track live. It is a great way to end an album and will be a great way to end a live show.
How To Bleed sets a successful path for ASHESTOANGELS and they seem intent on carving their name on every stepping stone. With another album in the bag is it their best work yet?
It certainly is.
How To Bleed is set for release on April 15th.