By: Jeremiah Nelson
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Released on January 18, 2016 via Loyal Blood Records
Ondt Blod has been making waves in Norway for several years. They released their self-titled EP in October of 2013, and followed it up with the EP Bunnen the following year. 2016 brings us their full-length debut Finnmark; ten new rage-filled hardcore songs about pride, self-loathing, and personal relationships. The new album was produced by Yngve Andersen and mastered by Brad Boatright, who has done work for Bane, Defeater, and Code Orange.
Ondt Blod is a five piece band, with Aslak Heika Hætta Bjørn on vocals, Alexander Våga Mortensen and John Nilsen on guitars, Kristoffer Joel Høe playing bass, and Håvard Rushfeldt on drums. The band mixes metalcore, anger, and party fun into an outrageous good time. The band rolls Every Time I Die, A Day To Remember, and Norma Jean up in a boxer’s heavy-bag and punches the shit out of it for 28 minutes.
‘Svarte Daga’ starts off with a fast-paced guitar lead and driving drums. You’ll immediately notice that the song’s lyrics are in Norwegian. This is true of every track on the record. Aslak’s voice slides from singing to harsh shouting flawlessly. Many of the songs have gang vocals and other band members singing behind Aslak’s howl. ‘Kompis Med Satan’ rides a blast beat to one of these gang-vocal choruses. It’ll make you wish you spoke Norwegian so you could sing along. Those gang vocals are support by guest appearances from some major Norwegian bands including Die a Legend, Kollwitz, Biru Baby, Jadudah, and Jabba.
‘Gjentegn’ starts with an 8-bit sound and the rest of the song is stop-and-go, frenetically paced, over before you know it. ‘Betongtro’ channels straight ahead punk with a two-step bridge, then both guitars and bass play three separate parts to weave a vicious sonic web. Ondt Blod writes catchy hooks and don’t play a song longer than they need to. Get in, punch someone in the face, and get out. Just don’t forget to smile along the way.
Finnmark doesn’t break new ground, but the band is angry and they’re happy about it. The songwriting is fantastic, to the point, and the production quality is excellent. The album is out now on Loyal Blood Records. Ondt Blod is kicking off a short record release tour on January 20 with a show at John Dee in Oslo, Norway.