MUSIC: Musically, Mainman Ron Merz has worked on further refining the characteristics of BLOODRED without giving up the typical sound. The album features massive Death Metal songs alongside epic hymns with more than a touch of Black, memorable melodies and complex song structures. All of this culminates in the title song, which with a playing time of over 11 minutes combines all typical BLOODRED characteristics and absolutely wants to challenge the listeners. Each song can stand for itself on the new album and yet “Ad Astra” is a consistent album that all fans of Extreme Metal should definitely keep an eye on.
LYRICS: The world is on fire, in the actual but also in the figurative sense! And so the album is lyrically more up-to-date than ever and takes up many developments from the past year. Regardless of whether it is the increasing tipping of the climate and all of its effects, social developments, the resurgence of authoritarian regimes and the diverse aftereffects of the Covid-19 pandemic, all of this has an impact on the lyrics of the album. Nevertheless, “Ad Astra” should also spread a certain hope, for which the album title also stands. The way to the stars stands for the fact that mankind can develop further if you tackle the challenges together.
ARTWORK: The album cover represents this conflict, in which it shows scorched earth and smoke, which then seamlessly merges into a cosmic nebula in the partially visible starry sky. The cover-artwork was painted by US-based artist Samuel Nelson exclusively for BLOODRED. The overall artwork and the photography was once again done by the internationally renowned artist Stefan Heilemann, who once again captured and implemented the mood of the album very well.
PRODUCTION: The album was recorded again in collaboration with Alexander Krull as producer in his Mastersound Studio (Guitars & Bass were recorded at BLDRD Studio) and again a further development of the sound is clearly audible. Despite all the aggressiveness and the necessary punch, there is room for each instrument and the small subtleties that allow you to discover new things again and again, even after repeated listening.
BAND: Once again, Ron Merz is solely responsible for the songwriting and the lyrics. In addition, he takes on guitar, bass and vocals again. On the drums, Joris Nijenhuis once again shows his skills and versatility, giving the album its own note. His precise playing drives the songs forward where necessary, the subtleties of his playing support the songs on the other hand in an excellent way. Both contribute to the fact that “Ad Astra” represents another milestone in the development of BLOODRED.
Read our review here.