Blood And Metal review by God Of War

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  • Released: Mar 2, 2010
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.1 (65 votes)
God Of War: Blood And Metal
3

Sound — 8
Love them or hate them, games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band have allowed fields of musical artists to reach a higher level of notoriety. Where MTV has essentially failed a generation, video games are oddly enough picking up the slack. So it's no surprise that marketers across the board have taken notes and are ready to combine forces, with the latest being the partnership between Sony publishers and Roadrunner Records. To coincide with this month's launch of God Of War 3, Roadrunner is also releasing a soundtrack EP for the video game. As far as a six-track, short-and-sweet EP goes, God Of War: Blood And Metal is a surprisingly well-balanced metal offering that features an impressive roster of bands. Metal reigns supreme on Blood And Metal, but with the addition of Dream Theater and Opeth two bands with extremely unique approaches to the genre the EP never remains stagnant. Kicking it all off, however, is one of the most commercially successful bands of the bunch, Killswitch Engage. In what could be described as classic Killswitch fare, My Obsession features no shortage of pinch harmonics, alternating vocal styles, and varying musical sections. There's even a brief spoken-word portion to top it all off. While it's not the most engaging song on the EP, My Obsession will be welcomed by any Killswitch fan. Trivium, Taking Dawn, and Mutiny Within all provide a solid showing with their respective songs, particularly in regards to the guitar work. The technical prowess is consistent between the three acts, and if you're a fan of solos they'll be right up your alley. Of course, if you're looking for the kings of virtuosity, Dream Theater has written one of their most impressive tracks to date with the instrumental Raw Dog. Leaving out the trademark vocals of James Labrie, there is little to distract you from the intricate arrangements that guitarist John Petrucci, keyboardist Jordan Rudess, bassist John Myung, and drummer Mike Portnoy make appear utterly effortless. The most daring addition on Blood And Metal belongs to the genre-defying Opeth. The band could have easily played it safe and followed suit by delivering an onslaught of distortion and manic solos, but Throat of War is an acoustic work of brilliance. The band doesn't feel the need to disrupt the mellow mood by throwing in unnecessary metal breakdowns or double bass pedal. Instead Mikael kerfeldt provides classically inspired acoustic work, a clean vocal delivery, and moments that are almost completely silent. It's the perfect transitional piece for the CD, which only improves by the contrasting sound.

Lyrics — 8
There could have been a fairly wide discrepancy in the lyrical approach because we are dealing with six different bands, but the themes stay consistent via the passionate themes. It's true that each band channels that passion differently, whether it be love (Killswitch Engage's My Obsession) or a thirst for war (Taking Dawn's This Is Madness). While the tracks aren't necessarily inspired directly from the video game itself, the resulting lyrical content feels oddly cohesive.

Overall Impression — 9
With any soundtrack or album that is inspired by a movie and/or video game, it often becomes a case of hit or miss. The six tracks featured on Blood And Metal do vary in metal styles and you may find yourself fast-forwarding past one or maybe even two songs, but even the most mediocre tracks are listenable. Your favorite selections will boil down to your personal taste, but Dream Theater and Opeth are the standouts in terms of creative, fresh arrangements. A few of the songs do go heavy on the screams, but any video game with the word war in the title probably desperately requires this element anyway.

71 comments sorted by best / new / date

    GREENWARRI0R
    Vicious00009 wrote: Yeah This EP is really unimpressive, aside from Dream Theater and Opeth the other tracks are unimpressive, featuring all the generic Metalcore crap nobody wants to hear. Thankfully DT and Opeth save this EP from total disaster. I'd just stick to the actually soundtracks to the game.
    lol, the DT and Opeth songs aren't even that great. They save the album from being utter garbage and make it mediocre at best.
    The Tak
    the ep didn't make that big of an impression on me to be honest, except maybe opeth and dream theater.
    korbhag
    How I would LOVE to hear Raw Dog when I'll go see DT with Maiden this summer! The look on the face of non-DT fans! (And even DT fans who never heard the track)
    RocknRollRay
    DT song was awesome, Opeth was amazing like always. killswitch was alright, trivium was good. ill def pick this up just for the DT song
    Lou108
    I managed to get a promo of this game and it is the most brutal game i have ever played! serriously kick ass game not for the faint of heart!
    svelle
    opeth and dream theater provided the only good tracks to this ep...
    Eurasian_C
    I'm personally hooked on Killswitch's track because of the melodic style, but I really wish they went for something more like Alive or Just Breathing for this EP. Actually, I don't know if anyone would agree with me, but I feel if "Be One" was never made for As Daylight Dies (even if just a b-side), it would've been a better song to use. Opinions?
    Stikit2duhman
    i really hate guitar hero and rock band but then I read: "Where MTV has essentially failed a generation, video games are oddly enough picking up the slack." i'm getting 2nd thoughts
    webbtje
    Instead Mikael kerfeldt provides classically inspired acoustic work, a clean vocal delivery, and moments that are almost completely silent.
    You forgot to mention that it's three sections vaguely cobbled together incoherently, with the silence trying to make us notice that they didn't bother with transitions between the sections.
    Linkerman
    The band could have easily played it safe and followed suit by delivering an onslaught of distortion and manic solos, but Throat of War is an acoustic work of brilliance.
    By the way, the song is called "The Throat Of Winter", not "Throat Of War".
    Linkerman
    I got this E.P., but i'm so addicted to Opeth's "The Throat Of Winter", that i couldn't hear the other songs yet. Everytime i play it, i put "The Throat Of Winter" on loop... :p It's no doubt an amazing song, Mikael was really inspired when he wrote it. I read somewhere an interview where he says this song wasn't supposed to be an Opeth song, which led me to believe that this is an example of what we could expect from his acoustic solo project. If it's true, his solo album will be something epic...
    Astyan
    It may be a blatant commercial move, but this game deserves quality Metal music (I'm picking up my copy tomorrow) and those bands deserve maximum exposure. Well, at least Opeth and Dream Theater. If they can hook new fans that wouldn't have given them a listen otherwise, it's totally worth it. I really liked how Mikael opted for an acoustic song, by the way. And Dream Theater's instrumental is extremely good (especially the solo). Special mention for Mutiny Within, not my style but they're punchy as hell and they're going to get shitloads of exposure out of this.
    NHECOS
    This is going to be a great game... mine in shipped and on his way... can't wait...
    Patrijz
    Woow! I just listened to Raw Dog and the titles serves the song well... I'ts so raw and dirty, I'm loving it! So excited to hear more of this album!
    Amito
    was a pretty good EP, Shattering the skies above is awesome
    napalm890
    I dunno what you guys are on, I find Opeths song to be pretty lame actually... I dont see whats so amazing about this dudes vocals, seem pretty average to me. I do like Raw Dog for its awesome solos tho
    Linkerman
    surgikal wrote: awesome.. a game finally stepped up and had an all metal soundtrack.. sweet, wish i had a ps3 though
    Don't forget "Brtal Legend"... For me, it's one of the best PS3 games ever, and the all-metal soundtrack definitely hits me on the sweet spot. Heavy metal, hot rods and gore + Epic storyline? = Pure awesomeness!
    Vicious00009
    Yeah This EP is really unimpressive, aside from Dream Theater and Opeth the other tracks are unimpressive, featuring all the generic Metalcore crap nobody wants to hear. Thankfully DT and Opeth save this EP from total disaster. I'd just stick to the actually soundtracks to the game.
    BlackSymphony6
    Sam Wotrey wrote: To me sounds more Arabian, just like most of all ballads Opeth makes.
    Wut? I'm not convinced by this new opeth song. I guess i need to listen to it some more.
    Sam Wotrey
    emphaticleech wrote: hauntedinflames wrote: and how the hell is The Throat Of Winter classically influenced? It sounds very Baroque more than anything else. But I can hear the harmonic 7ths that would constitute classical influence. gtfo.
    To me sounds more Arabian, just like most of all ballads Opeth makes.
    Domthenextflea
    Shattering the skies above is an AMAZING song. the guitar stands out amongst many songs and the chnage from their usual lyrical structure is an interesting(yet appreciated)change.
    DeadxEndxEmpty
    Shattering the skies Above all the way. Trivium stepped it up on that one. I'm honestly surprised they only got a footnote in the review.
    Tapping_Ninja
    hauntedinflames wrote: this EP blows, none of the songs have anything to do with the concept, and how the hell is The Throat Of Winter classically influenced? UG has some of the worst reviews on the internet
    My obession is about kratos Dead wife and how he is mad at the gods... Shattering the skies Above is about Kratos going and killing the gods which would shatters the skies Raw Dog is just a instrumental based on the music in the game already (very uninspired imo) This is madness is obviously a 300 reference and was made possible as a joke... But the conection is that it's a song about Sparta which there god was the god of war and also where Kratos is from and I really haven't listen to the last two songs so I have no clue what the conection is... But there is one.
    Tapping_Ninja
    I find it funny that he said Dream Theater and Opeth tracks where standouts... I found Dream Theater's song to be quite boring and not well thought out, and Opeth was too.... Not metal, not to say it wasn't good it just wasn't metal imo. I think the real standout tracks on there are Shattering the Skies Above, This is Madness (quite funny song really), and My Obsession (though my obession might take a while to get use to...)
    emphaticleech
    hauntedinflames wrote: and how the hell is The Throat Of Winter classically influenced?
    It sounds very Baroque more than anything else. But I can hear the harmonic 7ths that would constitute classical influence. gtfo.
    surgikal
    awesome.. a game finally stepped up and had an all metal soundtrack.. sweet, wish i had a ps3 though
    thrashmonkey
    i need to get this. I've only heard Shattering the Skies Above, but i've seen Taking Dawn play live and i know they'll be good. The others are good too
    hauntedinflames
    this EP blows, none of the songs have anything to do with the concept, and how the hell is The Throat Of Winter classically influenced? UG has some of the worst reviews on the internet
    napalm890
    Bcloak888 wrote: actually being a fan of the devine rock n roll myself...
    and why would someone with such musical taste click on a review for a metal soundtrack, and bother to critique with a biased opinion? obviously your not going to like it moron...
    CaRveItiNbass
    Mutiny Within? That's awesome. I saw them with Arch Enemy and Arsis, and they are one of the best openers I've ever seen. Anyone who plays guitar should love them. They're like Sonata Arctica with a heavier edge.
    Bcloak888
    Linkerman wrote: The band could have easily played it safe and followed suit by delivering an onslaught of distortion and manic solos, but Throat of War is an acoustic work of brilliance. By the way, the song is called "The Throat Of Winter", not "Throat Of War".
    Dawg, anal much?
    ttonkin5502
    Dream Theater are hands down my favourite band,no questions.love all there material, so wud love to hear what theyv done with this track.and live they kick ass, yes they don't have Rammstein sets,but they make up for it with their ability, they are all virtuoso's in their own right!anyone who ses otherwise is a tad ignorant, wether ur a fan or not.and who's the trivium fan?...they are great musicians, don't get me wrong, but wen they learn to write music let me kno.will prob try n get the DT n Opeth tracks individually.
    xicetraex
    I absolutely love Opeth, but the Throat of Winter isn't all that metal. Still an amazing song nonetheless.
    koyak
    By the way Music Theory doesn't make good music, Good Musicians make good music.... Weither they are techinical or not.
    Whoa there we go! You got that right
    Tapping_Ninja
    RocknRollRay wrote: Geesss Are you ppl tone deaf? How do you not like the DT song? Do you not see the beauty in the Opeth song? It's ok if your not DT fans but DT>Trivium and that is a musical fact. /rant
    no.... just no get off the bandwagon and stop acting like Dream Theater is a bunch of gods... I really get sick and tired of hearing about how Trivium sucks monkey nuts and Dream Theaters the greatest thing since sliced bread. I use to like dream theater a lot... Then I saw them live... And to be honest the only two people in that band I want to see play live again are Mike and Jordan... Everyone else can go be the techinicl twats they are. By the way Music Theory doesn't make good music, Good Musicians make good music.... Weither they are techinical or not.
    Colomir
    throat of war??... the guy is wrong. throat of winter! rlly good song
    RocknRollRay
    Geesss Are you ppl tone deaf? How do you not like the DT song? Do you not see the beauty in the Opeth song? It's ok if your not DT fans but DT>Trivium and that is a musical fact. /rant
    Tapping_Ninja
    Vicious00009 wrote: Yeah This EP is really unimpressive, aside from Dream Theater and Opeth the other tracks are unimpressive, featuring all the generic Metalcore crap nobody wants to hear. Thankfully DT and Opeth save this EP from total disaster. I'd just stick to the actually soundtracks to the game.
    Ummmm only two bands that are even metalcore on that album are Trivium (which their song was a far cry from generic metalcore) and Killswitch (which their song was like most there other songs...) I thought that Taking Dawn (as goofy as it is) was quite impressive structure wise and techincal speaking. And again I don't get whats so freakin' great about either Dream Theater or Opeth song... I mean Opeth's is kind of cool and Dream Theaters is just like a wank fest at best nothing memorable in that song...
    shadowspy
    Dream Theater and Opeth are both incredibly high on my list of favorite bands, but these songs don't impress me at all. The DT song is way too dark and sounds uninspired. The Opeth song isn't metal at all. I don't know. Better wait untill a new album. Maybe the songs will grow on me though.