Published Jun 06, 2014Much like their doom-rock brethren Graveyard and Witchcraft, Bloody Hammers have taken the road paved with high-gain tube amps and mystical lyrics about Ronnie James Dio. Under Satan's Sun feels like a humble journey through the Blackest of Sabbaths, with "The Last Alarm" in particular riffing dangerously close to familiar territory, repurposing that all-too-familiar progression into Stooges-esque stoner prog.
Though the band flirts with far meatier guitar work similar to Red Fang and Black Tusk, it would be easy to dismiss Bloody Hammers as yet another generic entry into the already overflowing glut of bands that pay homage to '70s sludge. Still, there is something to be said for reliability, and Bloody Hammers are nothing if not reliable. Sure, you will never be taken by surprise with frantic shredding or weird chord changes, but what's coming next will never confound, either.
Adequate to a fault, Under Satan's Sun is clearly entrenched in the heyday of AC/DC and Thin Lizzy without being overly referential. But given the respective mountain of albums each of those bands have sold, maybe ripping off "Cold Sweat" wouldn't be such a bad idea after all. (Napalm)