GOD FORBID – Earthsblood

GOD FORBID - Earthsblood
  • 8.5/10
    GOD FORBID - Earthsblood - 8.5/10


Century Media
Release date: February 24, 2009

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Yes, the Band is regularly labeled Metalcore. But don’t stop reading, this is definitely not one of the myriads of typical releases of that genre – actually, it is not even that genre any longer. Because most bands that were at the front of the movement regularly called New Wave of American Heavy Metal, which is something like a blasphemy as it never showed the creativity, the eruption of bands that the NWoBHM had, changed over time. But all labels aside, that time and place gave us quite some good bands and memorable albums, and its downfall was only the policy of labels to try to repeat a recipe for success until music and sound lost all originality and character. Yet, the good bands of the movement have prevailed, have adapted and moved on from that style, and so has the New Jersey five with their new release, creating something which has nothing in common with the above mentioned genre problem.

God Forbid have been around for ten years and present their fifth album Earthsblood, which is quite a positive surprise. The trademark’s core… shouting and breakdowns are still there occasionally, but instead of making one yawn, it always fits brilliantly into the songs. Why that change in reception? It is quite simple: Because that is not everything the songs offer. Instead, God Forbid lean heavily to the Prog side and invited influences of Melodic Metal, Thrash and Progressive Metal into their compositions. At the same time acknowledging their roots! That alone deserves a compliment.

The main trademark of the band was aggression and power. Their third album Gone Forever was a wall of violence, and even the following release IV: The Constitution Of Treason did not leave that ground, although it was more sophisticated. Since then three years have passed, but on the band it left a definite mark. It seems the approach to composing was different, the emphasis was put on melody and only secondly on aggression, a fact underlined by the use of clear vocals that occur throughout the album now. Even slow parts are more than just means to give the audience time to get set up for more pit action. If one would be cynical one could say the band actually wrote real songs for the first time. But that would be unfair to IV: The Constitution Of Treason, to which Earthsblood seems a logical step now, only that it is more a leap than a step.

With “Gaia (The Vultures)” the album contains the best song God Forbid have given us so far, an almost epical piece, and maybe together with the title track, which is the last but one track on the album, this almost twenty minute part of Earthsblood marks the musical highlight of the band’s bio so far. Singer Byron Davis shows a significant development, but all musicians seem to have improved a lot, and maybe that is the real reason for the huge step up in quality. Maybe they were not able to create music of this complexity and quality before. But whatever the reason, it was all worth it, for these two songs are already candidates for “best song of 2009”.

That said, the rest of the album would be excellent by its own right, but does pale a bit against those Ubersongs. Anyway, “The New Clear” is another highlight, while “Empire Of The Gun” summons the spirit of older God Forbid releases. “Walk Alone” is the opposite and could not be further away from the band’s history. The rhythm section and the creative guitar work is worthy to be discovered and does not become tedious even over time, and the leads are as brilliant as on any Unearth-release.There is not a single weak track on the album, it has everything a fan of quality Metal can ask for.

Thanks for this early highlight of 2009, guys. So let’s peel off the label Metalcore, put Progressive Metal on, and buy it. The first edition of the album contains a bonus disc, so it may be worth it not to wait.


  • Frank Jaeger

    Frank was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Bavaria, Germany. He has worked in the games industry for more than 20 years, now on the manufacturing side, before on the publishing end. Before this, he edited and handled the layout for a city mag in northern Germany ... maybe that is why he love being part of anything published. Frank got hooked on Metal at the age of 14 when a friend introduced him to AC/DC. They were listening to The Beatles, Madness, and The Police, and he decided they should move on. Well, they did, Back in Black became Frank's first Metal album, and since Germany is reasonably close to England, they had some small New Waves Of British Heavy Metal washing up on their shores: Tygers Of Pan Tang, Samson, Gillan, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Sweet Savage, Diamond Head, etc. If he had to pick his favorite styles, Prog and Power Metal would be at the top of the list.

    View all posts

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.