Review: “A Plague On All Your Houses” by Hellblind

In a time where the Supergroup has become something of a regular occurrence with touring bands forced to down tools as if some form of Global situation had taken place, musicians getting the time and opportunity to do projects that they have often talked about for decades comes a new band called Hellblind. They are an outfit comprised of household names that we have all known and loved for more than three decades with the throat of Stampin’ Ground (Adam Frakes-Sime), arms of Romeo Must Die (Will Romain), fingers of This Is Menace (Paul Fletcher), eyes of Pitchshifter (Mark Clayden) and scars of Outside the Coma (Charley Olsen) all playing their part. Collectively they have created a debut EP “Plague On All Your Houses” produced, mixed and mastered with Scott Atkins (Cradle of Filth, Venom Prison) at Grindstone Studios and given the line up, you can rest assured that it’s going to be heavy.

The combination of musicians involved in Hellblind on paper is cause for intrigue with reputations preceding each one of them but it has to be had that the end result is something greater than the sum of the bands parts. Opening up the floor with a no nonsense chugging beast in “Evil Eye“, Adam Frakes-Sime proves he still has what it takes be the mouth piece of a band while his barbed lyrics are very much from the warrior of old. It actually sounds like more of a mid record cut than an a pace setter but that only serves to set the stage for the step up that is “If You’re Going Through Hell“, with Igor Cavalera esq tribal percussive stylings and Corey Beaulieu esq lead moments underpinning the solid nature of the lyrics about keeping on going, enduring the pain of troubled times safe in the knowledge that there will be light at the end of the tunnel. The tale of a marriage gone band and the resentment it leaves makes for the magnificent center piece “Hitched” with melodic moments carefully weighted and cleaner but not clean vocal moments adding to the meloncholic undertone perfectly, the sentiment carried along by the current like a leaf floating down a river to the sea. The sound is crisp and clean, Atkins has done a fine job behind the boards with the percussion sounding huge and the leads kept to a minimum in the mix so as not to overpower the rhythms, a style choice that works well here. “Soul Assassin” perhaps marks the heaviest cut on offer here while still having some melodic tinges and an arty spoken word that is from the 90s Metal playbook, the pre-DJent riffs bringing and endless groove and wrapping back around to the opening cut in styling. All in all a mighty fine debut that leaves you wanting more [7.5/10]

Track listing

  1. Evil Eye
  2. If You’re Going Through Hell
  3. Hitched
  4. Wounds
  5. Soul Assassin

A Plague On All Your Houses” by Hellblind is out 23rd March 2022 via Cargo Records

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