3 Inches Of Blood Long Live Heavy Metal

3 Inches Of BloodLong Live Heavy Metal
Canadian heavy metal legion 3 Inches of Blood, currently based in Vancouver, BC, have been creating NWOBHM-influenced, '70s hard rock-inspired music since 2000. Long Live Heavy Metal is their fifth full-length release. The band draw upon tales of glorious battle for lyrical inspiration, often with a fantasy or mythological bent. They also write about heavy metal itself, like opening track "Metal Woman." 3IOB situate themselves firmly within the realm of traditional heavy metal, but it's often when they reach out beyond the confines of the genre that the album becomes most exciting. The folk-ish qualities of "Chief and the Blade" bring a refreshing change to Long Live Heavy Metal. Cam Pipes' extremely high-pitched and stylized vocal performance can be a sticking point ― fans with either love or hate it. When he employs fuller, more natural vocals, such as on "Men of Fortune," the singings sounds less forced and displays more richness in tone. Justin Hagberg's harsh vocals are quite successful also, and could have been used more frequently. Long Live Heavy Metal delivers precisely what it advertises: incredibly catchy, straightforward heavy metal with galloping drums and fiery solos. The few moments when it reaches beyond are rather exciting, but there are just a few and aren't fully integrated into the record. 3IOB are firmly entrenched in the middle of their genre and aesthetic, very content to remain there, offering their fans more of the same for those who have a taste for the classic metal of the '80s. (Century Media)