Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Gloomball-The Distance

Steamhammer / SPV

The Mannheim, Germany 5-piece known as Gloomball (interesting choice of name all in all) first came together in 2010 as a studio project. Doesn't it seem more and more like that's the case with a lot of bands these days? Really though, and let's be honest here, there's nothing all that unusual about going that route first as it gives these sort of young groups a firm place to get that initial footing down. As they started out that way then it is worth noting  that Gloomball put out two demos prior to this full-length debut. Now, whether just one or both of those demos (or neither I suppose) came about with a full-fledged band in place is left up in the air. Not that it matters much in the end though. Although, for those who have followed this band from the very beginning, it is worth mentioning that four songs from those demo days made it onto "The Distance"Fans would probably recognize those cuts as "In Blood", "Bitter Place", "Long Time Gone" and "We Do Belong". For the rest of us it's all new anyway so we'll get to the heavy rock that Gloomball lays down in just a second or two.. All told "The Distance" features seven brand-new tracks, those four leftover demo days tracks as mentioned and a pretty kick ass cover version of Robert M. Tepper's "Rocky IV." contribution, "No Easy Way Out". What's it all about though? Just what is the band selling with their full-length debut album then? Both of those questions are good so let's just see if we can get down to the bottom of this German group's sound together. First though just whose who in Gloomball? With lead vocals from Alen Ljubic, who sometimes comes across as Rob Zombie's illegitimate son (especially on the heavy rocker/opener "Overcome"!) while other time's he sounds as if he should be fronting a System Of A Down cover band, the band features a solid front-man. The rest of Gloomball is filled out by guitarist Björn Daigger (who composed the majority of these tracks with vocalist Alen Ljubic), guitarist Jossi Lenk, bassist Basti Moser and drummer Danny Joe. Stylistically these guys pull the trigger and go all out for this combination of modern hard rock (Hinder, Alter Bridge, Breaking Point, Nickleback, Shinedown, Papa Roach, Saving Able, etc), alternative hard rock/grunge (Rob Zombie/White Zombie, Sevendust, 12 Stones, 36 Crazy Fists, Soundgarden, Queens Of the Stone Age, Seether, Urge Overkill, etc.) and misc. other genres, acts and artists like Fear Factory, Pantera, Zakk Wylde and Filter. It's all well and good then as Gloomball keeps things moving and keeps things interesting! Everything about this young group from the lyrics to the actual music on hand points toward a band that has great promise.

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