A comic style painting of Antwerp’s mighty cathedral in flames. That’s one way of drawing attention to your album. And that’s exactly what Spankraght, a new industrial metal band from that very city, did on their debut, ‘Thou Shalt Drown in the Blood of Thy Children’, a concept album no less about the demonic forces of evil unleashed in our lovely country.
In essence, this outfit is a duo, but the two of them enlisted a whole bunch of guests to play a part in this tale. This way, each track gets its own unique flavour even though the dynamic duo stays at the core of the sound. Considering this is a self-released effort, they should already be applauded for just the feat alone of getting such an impressive roster of people to contribute to a ‘hell on earth’ concept album, full of danceable beats and hard metal riffs.
It starts out with an intro from the British radio that goes over in a rather disturbing local news report. The funny thing is that they are being read by actual news anchors, Marc Fransen and Wim Wilri, which lends it a bizarre touch of authenticity. A spoken word section follows that sets the background for this apocalyptic sci-fi story.
Spankraght manufactures a hybrid between compact, modern metal riffing and driving electronic beats in a manner not unlike Combichrist or Aesthetic Perfection. On the vocals of the Fear Factory-like ‘Reset Mankind’ we find none other than Channel Zero’s Franky DSVD, alongside Mario Cesar and Xavier de Schuyter, the vocalist from Saille, Voidwork and My Lament, among others.
The next song, ‘Carnivale’ brings in a female vocalist in the form of Evy Verbrugge from the symphonic metal band Elusion, as she unveils the horrific, blood soaked story behind the album title in a frolicky, party style fashion. Axl Peleman, yes you read that right, takes the story further in a new twist on the nativity story in a way like only he could on the synthy glimmer of light, ‘Hoop’. On ‘Resilient’ somehow they managed to ensnare Clawfinger’s Zak Tell, who gives the track the incendiary, streetwise power it needs to rile up the masses.
The punky, electronic onslaught of ‘Slaughtered’ might not bode well for the poor characters of the story, but is does make for a great track where they again bring together three different vocalists. The final track has another surprise in store, as the mechanical sounding intro to ‘Exodus’ is read by Mr. Alex Agnew himself. He paves the way for an almost 11 minute long opus that wraps up the story for mankind’s last hope.
As if a comic style, industrial concept album about demons bringing about the end of the world was somehow not enough as a badge of honour for their nerdiness, they even made a special mod for the DOOM II game that you can order with the limited edition box of this record.
Release date: February 21st, 2020
- Reset Mankind