Once again here I am discovering a band based on the trusted recommendation of a good friend. When Dustin Hardman told me I should give SOULDRINKER a listen, boy was he right. Together since 2013, with two EPs under their belt, their debut full-length album War Is Coming is out now via El Puerto Records GbR. Combining Markus Pohl’s (MYSTIC PROPHECY) killer guitar riffs with the tough-as-nails yet melodic as all Hell vocals of Iris Boanta, this record packs serious punch and also has some memorable hooks. One of the things I like most is that there are ten tracks of powerful metal here; no intros, no interludes, and quite frankly, no bullshit.
Right away “Let the King Bleed” sets the heavy-assed tone which only continues with “Souldrinker”, a track with a hook that will have fists raised from here to Europe and back. But the absolute best tune on this thing is “Promised Land” which also shows off how thick and rich the rhythm section of Chris Rodens (bass) and Steffen Theurer (drums) is. These guys anchor the song as Pohl unleashes the dirtiest, nastiest riff to go over top of them, all while Boanta delivers arguably her best vocal performance yet. Oh, and the guitar solo kicks ass, too! “To the Tick” starts out one way, then does a complete 180 that is sure to grab your attention.
“Take My Pain” manages to blend the heavy and melodic perfectly and is definitely another album standout for sure, as is “Like Rain” which once again shows off Boanta’s impressive pipes against a fierce musical backdrop. “Raise the Flag”, like the title suggests, has an anthemic quality that most headbangers will surely love, and “Fire Raiser” burns pretty hot, pun intended. “Voices” is another tune that really shows what this band is capable of: big hooks, riffs for days, and driving melodies that stay with you. Closing the disc is “Final Stand” and it sounds like someone turned on the musical buzzsaw for one last attack.
All told I was highly impressed with this debut from SOULDRINKER. I only sat down with it for the first time four days ago, but it left its mark from the very first listen. I’ve given it a bunch of spins since, and there’s no doubt in my mind that great things are in store for this band. I have no problem recommending War Is Coming to you guys. I think once the riffs and Iris Boanta’s vocals sink their teeth in, you’ll be digging them just as much as I am now. So what are you waiting for? Grab your copy today wherever you buy your music and go rock the fuck out!!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Promised Land”, “Take My Pain”, “Like Rain”, “Voices”, “Final Stand”