Millarium – First Blood Running

First Blood Running
Released 23rd October 2015
Heavy Metal/Thrash Metal
Released via Hänsel & Gretel, division of M.I.G-Music GmbH

‘First Blood Running’ is the debut album from the Hannover-based, German heavy metal band Millarium. The band was formed in 2009 and they also have an EP titled ‘Rise High’, which was released in 2012.

After a melodic and mostly guitar-driven instrumental intro, comes the title track offering a healthy dose of old school style thrash metal. The guitar riffs have that “bouncy”, bluesy feel to them whilst the vocals are catchy and easy to follow, but more melodic than the shouting style of classic thrash metal bands such as Slayer. Oh, and by melodic, I’m not referring to the story-telling vocal variety favoured by the likes of power metal bands including Iron Maiden but something more akin to the clear, heavy metal style of early Anthrax.

In many ways it’s the guitars more than the vocals that make the songs memorable. Take Insidious for example, it starts off with some downtuned and deceptively slow guitar melodies before gradually picking up the pace back to the playful, headbanging-friendly style featured in the previous tracks. Wasted is another track which has that playful feel to it, only this time the vocals have shifted towards the more aggressive, shouting style. Yet what caught my attention on this particular song was not the singing, but the enticing, mid-paced bass intro which offers you a chance to regain your balance again after several minutes of frequent headbanging; just so that you can resume the same stance by the time you heard the chorus. Then there’s their cover of Steppenwolf’s classic Born To Be Wild, which seems like a very fitting way to close what has been a very enjoyable album.

Overall, this album sounds like it was recorded to be played live at a festival. Millarium’s style has a certain amount of melody to it which sets them apart from the more aggressive and faster thrash metal bands, but that doesn’t make their songs any less catchy.

4/5

Iza Raittila

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