Reflection – Bleed Babylon Bleed (Pitch Black Records)

Reflection – Bleed Babylon Bleed (Pitch Black Records)

Exceptionally good in places...

Greeks Reflection have been extant for a quarter of a century, although Bleed Babylon Bleed is only their fourth full length release in that time.

Epic, chest-beating anthemic metal is what they do best – Sabaton have clearly been an influence in later years – with the band often getting involved in the sort of martial, Manowaresque swagger designed to show ofF the impressive pipes of new vocalist George Thomaidis. The title track throws in very faint oriental metal touches, though never so much to bog the band down in any spurious folk metal shenanigans.

It’s all great stuff, if a little straightforward at times, whilst sometimes the band forgets about tunes as they show off their undoubted technique. . Reflection don’t exactly run out of inspiration, but do occasionally seem to be treading water patiently waiting for the next metallic wave to ride in to shore. This is when they are at their most frantic, yet conversely also at their least satisfying.

When it all clicks, as it does partially on the afore-mentioned title track and fully on the staggeringly good Ruler of My Own Land, then the band really do sound like contenders.

Put simply, the band literally destroy all in their path on Ruler… It’s the sort of bellicose, blustering true metal Yngwie Malmsteen used to make when he was a Viking; thunderous, galloping drums from George Pavlantis set the whole thing up, but it’s the incendiary guitar playing of Stathis Pavlantis in concert with Thomaidis’ epic vocal performance that demand the plaudits. It’s quite possible you might have a seizure listening to this track, as your brain implodes under the weight of deciding whether to play air drums, guitar or just throw some classic metal vocalist shapes.

If Reflection never make another album, they can rest easy in the knowledge that they have written at least one classic metal song, a song fit to join the pantheon of true metal anthems. But let’s hope they don’t stop now – because on the evidence of this one song I know they have it in them to come up with something even better – or, preferably a whole album’s worth of the stuff – in the future. Here’s hoping!

Ferry Templeton
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