A handful of weeks over two years ago, British metallers Bad Solution seriously impressed with their first EP, Self Destruct. A fiery and inventive roar, it seeded a keen anticipation for the London based band’s debut album; a hunger made to wait but now rewarded with a beast of a first full-length not only confirming that early promise but pushing their sound and writing to a whole new level.
That fresh new adventure tempers the slight disappointment of four out of the album’s ten tracks coming from that first release though such their impressive and highly enjoyable impact there is never a negative hearing them again and again. Their infusion within the brand new tracks on The War Within actually brings other previously less noticeable attributes within the quartet out to join those of their newer companions to create a fully rounded and increasingly riveting proposition.
With originally an all Polish line-up, Bad Solution was formed in 2011 by guitarists Trix and Mariusz Chojnowski. By the November of that first year, British vocalist Alex Willox came in with fellow Brit Joe Patterson replacing Mariusz Burzynski on drums two years later. With the current line-up completed by original bassist Wojtek Suberlak, Bad Solution has gone from strength to strength on the UK live scene, also sharing the stage with the likes of Gallows, The Blackout, and Soulfly across numerous festivals. The release of Self Destruct in 2015 thrust the outfit into a new richness of attention which can only be eclipsed by that generated by the outstanding exploits of The War Within.
Drowning starts things off, instantly confronting ears with rapaciously wiry grooves and hard jabbing beats. It pulls back a touch soon after, relaxing into a more controlled stroll as the guitar weaves a melodic web though still the rhythmic incitement of Suberlak and Patterson brings a bite and lively tenacity. The quickly impressing vocals of Willox are potently backed by the roars of Trix as the song develops a Clawfinger like snarl, it in turn evolving into a just as enticing melody rich cry. The carousel of the song continues to turn, increasingly engaging ears and involvement with very round whilst developing a volatility which only adds to its potency.
It is an outstanding start matched by the equally boisterous and aggressive proposal of Nothing (You don’t know me). Like a fusion of Five Finger Death Punch and Bloodsimple, it is a fiery protagonist grabbing and teasing ears with its muscular and melodically seductive enterprise, Willox again a striking and impressive presence within a maelstrom of ravenous and creatively tenacious magnetism.
Demon In My Bed then follows, beckoning the imagination with its initial Middle Eastern flavoured coaxing, a hue continuing to seduce and flourish throughout the track’s beguiling tapestry of sound and flavours. Once more there is a Clawfinger-esque feel to moments within the song but as in its predecessors, the song soon shows its own individual character in sound and writing as mellow passages beget invasive groove stoked dexterity which begets revolving flames of melodic endeavour.
The melancholic caress of the piano amidst sorrowfully ethereal keys brings Self Destruct into view next, Willox laying his plaintive tones in their arms as darker hues simmer and eventually grow. Veining them are spicy tendrils of guitar and a bass snarl which just intensifies as the song eventually erupts into greater aggressiveness bringing a Papa Roach meets Spineshank air to proceedings. Trix and Chojnowski add additional creative flames with their magnetic guitar craft, the track boiling up with every passing twist and turn for an impassioned climax taking a final bite out of the senses before the calmer presence of Echoes Of The Cry steps forward. With captivating elegance to its melodies and atmosphere, Willox similarly restrained in his tone, the track smoulders and simmers but with an increasing edge which sparks thicker flames of intensity across its lively croon. Though a slow burner compared to those around it, the song simply blossoms over time to one of the album’s truly memorable moments.
The chunky invitation of The Last Lie has ears and appetite swiftly on board whilst adding another strain of refreshing flavouring to the release with its echoes of One Minute Silence. Added to the progressive, slight seventies scented journey of the encounter, it makes for a beguiling and seriously virulent persuasion though still not as addictive as the ever manipulative exploits of Desert Rock. The star of the first EP, it seems to grow with every listen even two years on. It’s also Middle Eastern seeded temptations come backed by a rhythmic incitement which has feet bouncing within seconds. As infectious as they are though, they carry an aggressive bent which strikes almost venomously, the snarling bass matching that ferocity as those early evocative melodies continue to seduce around the addiction stoking chorus. Every band has a track which seals the deal with fans more than any other; this is Bad Solution’s and then some.
The swinging stroll of Dear Sarah follows, a flirtatious affair grabbing feet and hips with its first breath as the imagination comes under the magnetism of tangy sonic tendrils and the vocal prowess of Willox. A fusion of alternative metal and hard rock, the song is as rugged as it is graceful ensuring that the album only increases its grip on ears and pleasure; a hold tightened further by the classic/blues rock hued FOD. A fire of sound and intensity equipped with its own contagious kindling, there is no escaping its creative drama.
The War Within is completed by the equally inflamed White Washed, a track with irritability in its veins and a melodic rapacity in its heart. Suberlak’s bass is a delicious grumble within the flames, though not given enough clarity to groan for personal tastes, whilst Patterson masterfully scythes across the hungry tide of riffs and resourceful web of grooves cast by Chojnowski and Trix.
Though maybe not as impacting as those before it, the track is a fine end to a greed inspiring album. Two years back, the Self Destruct EP suggested Bad Solution were knocking on the door of major recognition. Its opening surprisingly never quite came but no worries, the quintet have just kicked it down with The War Within.
The War Within is available now from most online stores.
Pete RingMaster 08/08/2017
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