#TBT: Melodeath March Continues with BLOOD STAIN CHILD'S Epsilon
Welcome to Throwback Thursday! This is the place where we get to indulge in nostalgia and wax poetic about excellent metal of years past. TBT number 64 continues a month featuring one of my favorite genres in the metalverse: Melodeath. Now, we need to talk about the Japanese and their contributions to metal. Masters of atmosphere, costuming, precision, and finding the superlative of every instrument, the Japanese metal scene loans itself to very unique interpretations of beloved metal subgenres. Making music unlike any other country, Japan's own Blood Stain Child is paving the way with new interpretations of melodeath that are scrying the future of genre blending one techno-infused orb at a time.
BLOOD STAIN CHILD'S EPSILON
Release Date: June 15 2011
Record Label: PONY CANYON
Epsilon is Blood Stain Child's 5th studio release, and if you've never heard the band before, start by checking out one of the records best songs "Stargazer":
This in-your-face track feels like a led-laden roller coaster ride through the many points and bends of an anime characters wildly colored hair. Combining death metal and techno elements, Blood Stain Child creates an unforgettable and unfamiliar atmosphere in the turgid world of melodeath. Every bit as melodic and intense as their melodeath counterparts, Blood Stain Child creates a mood with Epsilon that only Japan could deliver. Full of bounding energy and optimism, Epsilon is a heavy album that finds fun and drama within every song.
Sounding like a baby of Soilwork, In Flames, and 90's-era happy-2b-hardcore, Epsilon's combination of trance-style techno into full-sounding, shorter-sustaining riffs creates an entire new dimension of melodeath. The combination actually makes a lot of sense if you think about juicing the 'soaring' nature of melodeath into an entirely new, hyper-unparalleled form. Check out album opener "Sirius VI":
Objectively, the band straddles a strange line between legitimate metal and 'toy' metal. What I mean is that I enjoy the music but my western sensibilities make me a bit shy to admit that I do. As a metal fan and amateur expert on the moodiest and most expressive bands in modern music, where does Blood Stain Child fit in? Plainly put, Blood Stain Child's music is a dead ringer for animation intros made into fully fleshed out songs and albums. Listening to Epsilon feels like a guilty pleasure – but why? As I mentioned in last week's TBT, I look for a sense of optimism and energy in melodic death and Blood Stain Child delivers on that intention 1000 fold. Check out the energy in track "Electricity":
I absolutely love this album. The production is super tight, the selection of songs is diverse enough to stay interesting throughout the record, and I love the incorporation of clean vocals. For me, it offers a kind of escapism that fills me with unbridled positive energy.
I have to wonder how much of a reflection bands like Blood Stain Child are of the country's culture. Are they mainstream of part of a subculture? Are they cool or uncool? Please weigh in if you have any further insight. What I can confidently remind all of you, dear readers, is that preference is subjective and if you like Blood Stain Child, like them. I do. If nothing else, consider your horizons expanded and appreciate that bands like Blood Stain Child are out there doing something genuine and unique. 'Metal cards' are meant to be punched, not gatekept.
Got any other melodeath favorites? Comment down below or tag us in your social media under #metalinjection and #melodeathmarch