Saturday 25 May 2013

ASG - Blood Drive - Review

Blood Drive cover art

ASG is a Hard Rock/Stoner Rock Band from USA

The members are:

Jason Shi- Guitar/ Vocals
Andy Ellis- Bass
Scott Key- Drums
Jonah Citty- guitar

ASG are a band who have been together since 2001 and have been steadily been building up their profile with a string of superb albums and EP’s. I have been a fan of their music since their debut album. Their blend of Punk, Thrash, Stoner and Hard Rock won them a whole range of admirers and some pretty high profile tours and support slots.

However, it has been six long years since their last superb album – Win Us Over. Since then the guys have signed to Relapse Records to release their excellent new album – Blood Drive. Every time a band signs to Relapse Records, they immediately up their game. We have seen this with ASG label mates – Inter Arma and their excellent new album – Sky Burial.

Well I am happy to report that ASG are back better than ever. OK the guys have might have changed their Punk, Thrash vibe for a more Progressive Psychedelic sound that would not seem out of place from a recent Mastodon or Baroness album. However, ASG have not been around as long as they have without being hugely talented individuals themselves.

Blood Drive features 12 blistering tracks that will have your blood pumping from the start. First track – Avalanche – highlights what ASG are all about now. The powerful riffs come at you out of nowhere with sublime vocals to match. 6 years might have passed but ASG have lost none of their magic.

2nd track – Blood Drive – is a mighty fine slab of Hard Rock grooves matched with high intensity Stoner Rock riffs that can show today’s Stoner Rock newcomers on how to write a perfectly balanced track blending sublime stoner based groove laiden riffs matched with intelligent lyrics.

Matt Hyde is once again behind the scenes producing this excellent album and it has his Midas touch all over it. If you are a fan of Matt’s work then you are going to be in for a wild ride. Matt proves he is one of the best producers out there with his work on the album, as ASG have never sounded so better than they do here.

Blood Drive feels like a greatest hits collection than a new album and I mean that in the best possible way. All 12 tracks are equally superb as each other. ASG do not waste one note or riff to prove they have released one of the best Stoner Rock releases of 2013. Any of these songs can be released as a potential single and be adored by the Hard Rock/Stoner Rock crowd across the globe.

Blood Drive shows what excellent songwriters ASG actually are. Check out tracks such as Day’s Work, Scrappy’s Trip, Blues for Bama and my fave track – Children’s Music.

ASG already had an arsenal of great tracks to blast their way onto any rock/metal stage. It’s just with Blood Drive that ASG now have the potential to be headliners in their own right on the world stage. Blood Drive could be classed as their most commerical work to date and that is no bad thing. It will gain the band much deserved exposure. Any why not – they deserve it. 12 years as one of the best hard-rocking units currently within today’s Hard Rock/Stoner Rock Scene.

Blood Drive is an action packed ride full of amazing riffs to prove that ASG are finally back where they belong. Let’s hope they don’t leave it for another 6 years to show the world what they can do.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Thanks to Monica at Speakeasy PR and Relapse Records for sending me a copy to review. Much appreciated.

Blood Drive will be available to buy on all formats from 28th May 2013.

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