Release Date: Nov 10, 2014
Record label: Nuclear Blast
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Heavy Metal, Death Metal, Speed/Thrash Metal
While Machine Head’s last album, 2011’s Unto the Locust, divided opinion in a way that 2007’s globe-conquering The Blackening manifestly didn’t, there is still a strong sense that Robb Flynn’s crew are a band with a ferocious wind in their sails. Bloodstone & Diamonds sounds quite unlike anything else happening in metal right now – both a testament to Flynn’s unique vision and a timely reminder that making heavy music that resonates on both visceral and emotional levels is not quite as straightforward as certain factions would have us believe. When Machine Head are at their most explosive, most notably on bellicose opener Now We Die and Game Over’s rampaging tornado of vitriol, they emanate a power and intensity that few bands from any generation can match.
It's been three years since Machine Head released Unto the Locust, widely considered the mainstream metal album of 2011. That was no small feat: four years later it was followed by The Blackening, which is arguably regarded as their magnum opus. Bloodstone & Diamonds is the first MH offering without founding bassist Adam Duce; he has been replaced by former Sanctity guitarist Jared MacEachern.
Eight albums in... but have Machine Head still got da riffs? SPOILER: yes. They have. It’s all change in the Machine Head camp, but despite their eighth album being their first without co-founder and bassist Adam Duce and in turn their first away from Roadrunner Records, ‘Bloodstone & Diamonds’ is as solid as we’ve come to expect.