Review: “Blood For Heaven” from Spektrvm

Originally formed in 2016 by bassist Michael Pouliezos and guitarist George Zikas, Greek Metal group Spektrvm (pronounced “Spectrum“) went through numerous line up changes before settling on vocalist Thanos Zabetakis, guitarist Nicholas Dhamo and drummer Lyo Panagiotopoulos in the final months of 2021, having tried and tested them in the live arena. Their debut album together which was curiously pre-produced at Phobetor Home Studios is titled “Blood From Heaven” and while it may not be a concept record, there are overarching themes contained within its confines about different social and political failings in our society, with roots that trace back to acts of greed, pride and vanity and feelings of anger, sadness and depression…

 

In Greek mythology, Oizys is the Goddess of misery, anxiety, grief, depression and misfortune whose Roman name is Miseria from which the English word Misery is derived. The band use the name as a theme with “Gift Of Oizys“, creating a cinematic instrumental that builds an atmosphere of tension to provide the feeling that something dark is about to happen with an eerie calm before the storm. The title track may not be the punch in the face that the majestic introduction seemed to be building to but it has plenty to offer in an entirely different direction as dark brooding piece with Progressive Metal leanings and a nice rise and fall with a waltz like momentum, subtle and yet mysterious enough to draw you towards the flames. The band have Hard Rock sensibilities with some catchy American Hard Rock radio riffs on “Leviathan” and Zabetakis having some accenting that makes him sound like David Draiman from Disturbed, the result being something that sounds like it could be from a mid career Godsmack until it tails off into some Progressive meanderings in the final moments. There is so much more to the band than meets the eye with any one track taken in isolation and with “Trying To Breathe“, Zabetakis has moments where he sounds like Muse vocalist Matthew Bellamy with his warm clean vocals, the solo on this one being a well executed classic.

Rain Fire” brings a more intricate and extended solo for a cut that has a freer, fast an loose style to it, the chanting in the verses clearly designed for the live shows where the audience will be able to interact with the band and join in, giving it more a greater sense of fun. The cinematic vibes of the opening instrumental are built on with the swirling riffs of “Without Borders“, a song which certainly wouldn’t feel out of place if it appeared during the credits of a Hollywood blockbuster. One of the albums stand out cuts, it combines the big chorus with a decent amount of satisfying crunch and unlike a few cuts where the not enough of the depth of feeling that the weight of the lyric carries is brought across in the vocal performance with this one the band nail it. Spektrvm are intent on making arena filling anthems, Metal for the masses with sing-a-long ability that follow in the footsteps of bands like The Raven Age but with less Iron Maiden influence and there is the sense here that the band want to go big with everything, so it will be interesting to see if the Progressive inspired nuances that are found here remain in place on later records or if they follow bands like Alter Bridge… [7/10]

Track Listing

1. Gift Of Oizys
2. Blood For Heaven
3. War Of Chameleon
4. Leviathan
5. Trying To Breathe
6. Rain Fire
7. Without Borders
8. Green God
9. Rotten World

Blood For Heaven” from Spektrvm is out 8th July 2022 via Sliptrick Records

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