It’s very nice to see new bands from South America taking their place in the Heavy Metal scenery with good songs and killer riffs that take us back to ’80s old school thrash/death metal — a time when Sepultura and Violator from Brazil, and other already renowned bands as Death, Cannibal Corpse, Celtic Frost, Venom, Destruction were blowing minds around the world with destroying riffs, fast and furious solos and straight songs, without much technique, but with lots of energy.
Listening to some of AKBAL’s debut songs is a real pleasure due to the high quality in both the songs and recording (an extremely important point for me). Moreover, all the songs are in Spanish, which is a nice way to value their own cultural background. Anyway, AKBAL’s album entitled “Cegado” (which means “Blinded” in English) is aimed to reveal the rough reality of our dog-eat-dog world and inner human conflicts in its lyrics, which are great with the heavy guitars of Carlos Vega (electric guitar) and Cristian Guerrero (vocals and electric guitar), and also Carlos Soto on bass guitar and Cristian Gonzales on drums, showing a clear and straight performance on their instruments. However, if you’re a musician (like me) and you’re always trying to find that unfuckingbelievable band with virtuoso musicians … sorry but you will not find them here. But if you’re looking for a band to bang your head with your friends without worry about technique, this is the band.
Although the members have used some new concepts as modern effects, both in vocals and guitars, that are used nowadays in New Metal bands and Metalcore (sometimes excessively amounts of effects, what makes these bands being rejected by some “true” headbangers) I felt they didn’t lose the real essence from the ’80s metal bands. I strongly believe that even the most old school Death/Thrash metal fans will listen to this album over and over again, mainly the songs “Cegado” and “Maldito Ladrón”: they will blow your brains out! I’ve just missed one thing from the songs on the album: killer guitar solos. Indeed, if you’re looking forward to listening to some shredding solos…forget it. But you might enjoy the solos from the songs “Mil Veces” and “Sueño Irreal”: medium speed, nice performances and beautiful tones.
Overall, it’s a band that tries to rescue some values from the Death/Thrash metal bands from the ’80s mixed with new musical concepts from the 21th century. All members have a great performance on their instruments, all riffs and vocal melodies are detailed and well performed and the lyrics spit out human concerns and social issues we all face.
If you really appreciate all these points above … enjoy yourself!