Withdrawal Faith, Flesh and Blood

Withdrawal's new seven-inch is just over 15 minutes of pure evil. With a sound somewhere between Venom, Slayer and East coast hardcore punk, Faith, Flesh and Blood sounds like an underground mixtape from the mid-'80s. The lack of production quality is actually a charming feature of Faith, Flesh and Blood, giving the release an authenticity that's hard to capture when there's expensive studio work involved. We start to see the band's debt to Slayer on opener "Shapeshifter," with a Reign In Blood-era solo. Each note is bent and stretched to an extreme before guitarists Brad and Aaron (no last names listed) race through the song's remaining seconds. "Rotten Hell" runs over six minutes, but less than three are actual music. The portion with the band playing is more thrash, with a bit of group back-up chorusing that gives the release its slightly hardcore quality. Faith, Flesh and Blood is a great addition to the band's catalogue of EPs. Hopefully we'll get a full-length album sometime in the near future. (A389)