Although this E.P. has been out for almost a year now, it was only until recently that I got my hands on it, and to be honest this was the first time I’m hearing of this band, that’s one of the reasons why I love writing for The Metal Resource (TMR). It could very well be said that TMR has exposed me to some really great artists over these years and Holy blood with its signature style is one of them.
Now, Holy blood needs little introduction given the fact that they’ve been making music since the late 90s. It wasn’t until 1999 when guitarist-vocalist Fedir Buzylevych, drummer Dmytro Tytorenko, and bassist Mykhailo Rodionov came together and formed the band. Hailing from Kiev, Ukraine (I’ve always wanted to visit this place, for I’ve heard so much about it) and having played together earlier with Voice of Cryeth under different avatars, it is no surprise to state that the band comprises immense talent.
They started off playing the Hardcore Punk genre initially but as I see with time weren’t afraid to play out different styles notably Deathcore and eventually deciding to play melodic death metal for their first album. This may been attributed and influenced as newer member were recruited to band Oleksiy Furman as lead guitarist, Vira Kniazeva as keyboard player and Yevhen Tsesarev to fill in the bass. Their music is characterized by elements based on Ukrainian folk traditions and Celtic music. They incorporate ethnic instruments such as blockflute and bagpipe. The vocals are high-pitched shrieking but also incorporates folk choirs. The band list Ensiferum and Finntroll as some of their key influences.
Hope the above satisfies the reader with a fair introduction, I spin off the record where mystery and metal beckons. I start off with, “Primary Rus” which is a fitting introduction to the E.P. is an instrumental track, which sets an awe inspiring atmospheric vibe with the organ giving chills, coupled with slower and eventually heavier chugs on the guitar. This track will set you straight to groove your head with its meaty riffs and eclectic guitar solos showcasing amazing technical prowess.
Next up we have “By Fire and Sword” which picks up the pace from its predecessor, and is accentuated with really low vocals with eventual growls, it reminded me of Balkandji, a band from Sophia, Bulgaria, as its very rare to use such a consistently lower baritone voice. But what’s truly amazing about this song is the amalgamation of the flute bringing in some strong flavour to the overall delivery. Whats not to miss is the blitzing guitar solo finishing off the song.
“Get ready for battle” follows the same pursuit, using the Blockflute to delve into the song and more or less the same vocal style as that of “By Fire and Sword”. And I’ll repeat it again the face melting sweeping guitar solo is NOT to be missed, so much wonder and magic has gone into crafting it and I just loved it from the bottom of my heart.
Now strangely and ignorant of my previous comment the next song is named “Sophia of Kiev” an instrumental track. It starts off with mesmerising bagpipes and jumps straight off to Blockflute and real low and heavy chugs on the guitars, the flute and the Guitars duel it out and is fantastic hear. The E.P. ends with the self-titled, “Glory to the Heroes”, continuing the formulaic but what stands out is the blitzing guitar solo and the flute outro that sort off takes this EP to an swift end. The tunes really do catch your attention and gets you glued to song, the lyrics were not in English so I had a tough time understanding the songs
Production : The production could have been better as I could hear a lot of muffle and less of crunch in the sound.
Conclusion : My only complaint would be that vocalist didn’t really experiment much here with the songs, but I guess that’s what the tracks required. If you haven’t heard it till now, I urge you to not wait anymore and go buy this E.P.!
Written by: Ankit Sood
1. Primary Rus (Instrumental)
2. By Fire And Sword
3. Get Ready For Battle
4. Sophia Of Kiev (Instrumental)
5. Glory To The Heroes
Fedor Buzilevich – lead vocals, flute, rhythm guitar
Deny Moshkov – bass
Sergeii Khylko – flute
Philipp Kharouk – drums
“The Wanderer” 
“Waves are Dancing” 
”The Patriot” 
”Shining Sun” 
“Day of Vengeance” 
“Glory to the Heroes” 
Release Date: May 15, 2017
Record Label: Vision of God Records
Video (audio) for ‘Sophia Of Kiev’ (Instrumental)
Video (audio) for ‘By Fire And Sword’