VAMPS- BLOODSUCKERS (Review)

VAMPS

VAMPS are once again with us for the third time this year with their new album Bloodsuckers, their 1st album in four years.The band’s previous release was VAMPIRE KISS, a powerful and beautiful single so we can expect great things from this album. Without any further ado let’s get started.

This single is available in three different editions: regular, limited edition type A and limited edition type B.

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Single: Bloodsuckers
Label: Universal Music
Release date: 29/10/14
Genre: J-rock

Tracklist

1
REINCARNATION
2
ZERO
3
LIPS
4
AHEAD
5
EVIL
6
GHOST
7
VAMPIRE’S LOVE (japanese version)
8
DAMNED
9
GET AWAY (japanese version)
10
REPLAY
11
BLOODSUCKERS
12
THE JOLLY ROGER
13 INSIDE MYSELF

Track by track analysis

1- REINCARNATION 

Starting off with a beautiful and fast piano REINCARNATION opens the door to this album for us. The instrumental gets more rock oriented with the drums and the remaining instruments that one by one start playing making the rest of the piece more “VAMPS-like”. Great track and perfect choice to kick off this album.

2- ZERO

After the previous track we now have ZERO,  a more electronica oriented song but it still has all the elements that define VAMPS, the powerful guitars that makes us reminisce THE JOLLY ROGER.The synths in the background give this song a whole different instrumental that is unexpectedly good and at the same time shows us that VAMPS are trying to incorporate new elements to their “sound”. 4.5/5

3- LIPS

LIPS is completely different from the previous songs that were calm whereas this one is heavy to say the least. Starting off with the double-bassed drums and the strong guitar riffs make this song a really good one where HYDE can show us his vocal potential without holding back. The outro was an awesome surprise with the slap-bassed bass and with some elements from drum&bass turning this part of the song the favorite for lots of fans and making this song the one of the best in the album.5/5

4- AHEAD

Hardrock song through and through. Strong guitar riffs by K.A.Z, an amazing bassline and those crazy drums wrap this song into good package. A headbanger without doubt.  HYDE’s voice is just what we would expect from him: raw emotion, defying vocals and, what many bands in Japan lack when the opt not to sing on their native language, the lyrics sang in an almost perfect english from him.  4.5/5

5- EVIL

The drums, the distorted guitar and synths make EVIL a track with a very eerie instrumental. This song is yet again a very good one and just like LIPS it is a heavy track, compared with the first songs in the album. The bass and the guitar are together throughout the whole track and both are in “solo-mode” until the end. Despite all the good aspects of this track it can be a little repetitive so it is a little of a let down in that part. 4/5

6- GHOST

GHOST kicks off with the guitar and drums that lose a little of speed when HYDE starts to sing with a little of distortion in his voice. The chorus of this song is amazing, the instrumental is good the vocal work is good too, all of this makes the chorus the perfect one and it doesn’t need to have all the speed or heaviness to turned out to be a diamond in this album, plus it has a jazzy piano at the end of the song, a somewhat unexpected element added to the song but nevertheless not a bad choice.  5/5 

7- VAMPIRE’S LOVE

Starting with a beautiful piano in an acapela, slowly making its way into the instrumental we have synths that transform VAMPIRE’S LOVE into a very melodic track. The way HYDE adjusted his normal way of singing to this song, that at first it’s not rock but that after the intro will have some elements of the typical VAMPS‘s instrumental added to it, was simply amazing. In this track the whole instrumental just completes itself, the rock elements with the classical ones just put the whole song together. If you listen to it with attention you will notice that this track makes a full cycle, starting with the melodic piano then turning to a slightly more rock song only to then return to the piano that will end the track . 5/5

8- DAMNED

Starting off with a once again heavy instrumental, DAMNED will leave a big impression in anyone be it because of the “macabreness” in the piece or the way HYDE is singing this song. The drums and guitar will get the most highlight alongside with the violins that will join the rest of the instrumental, only to then the song reach its peak of being macabre. This song as EVIL was,  is little repetitive but it has an amazing solo. 4/5

9- GET AWAY

GET AWAY starts off with a very industrial rock kind of style. Synths with an oriental “touch” lead the way in a track marked by a powerful rock instrumental. As VAMPS have already used us to, the band’s big foundation to their sound – the guitars – are aggressive with powerful riffs, highly technical parts and good solos. But that isn’t all. The drums deliver an energetic, explosive performance throughout the track. With this simple formula the instrumental piece seems ready to impress and catch the listener’s attention. Still, no big surprises in the guitar solo in the outro, a typical VAMPS guitar solo in a typical VAMPS track. The vocal track with HYDE on the helm as usual is delivered in the most precise way, in the end a solid performance as always but nothing new added to their repertoire with this track. 4/5

 

10- REPLAY

There are songs and SONGS. “REPLAY” is a gem. A more electronic approach on this one with the guitar working with synths making this an amazing instrumental piece by itself. This song just sounds incredibly good from the very beginning only turning even better by the chilling chorus with HYDE hitting the high notes like it’s no problem at all. Incredibly catchy song.5/5

 

11- BLOODSUCKERS

The song that gives this album its name starting off with powerful drums and guitar, Bloodsuckers is a yet again a heavy track with a instrumental lead by the guitar and some synths. 4/5

12- THE JOLLY ROGER

THE JOLLY ROGER kicks off in a completely different gear. The fast pace that marks this track makes it for a nice change in comparison to the mid-tempo industrial feel delivered by the previous track. Well this track is peculiar in itself and I’ll start explaining why. It’s not a common thing in VAMPS‘s music to have jazz elements much less to resort to wind instruments. That might sound in its way a bit weird to have VAMPS‘s rock sound and picturing it with a sax on it but in this track the band really tried to innovate and deliver something completely new to the fans.  5/5

13- INSIDE MYSELF

To close the album INSIDE MYSELF is a calmer track that starts off with synths and guitar, honestly speaking this song has a very peculiar mix in the beginning but it actually works just fine. The chorus in this song is a little different from the usual with only the guitars, bass and violins in the spotlight delivering us a more melodic chorus and solo as well . This song is the best in the whole album. 5/5

Final rating:4 stars

This album has a lot of great songs like LIPS, GHOST and INSIDE MYSELF that aren’t all necessarily heavy but still have something that is new to the instrumental making these the best tracks in the album and then we have EVIL, DAMNED  that or are extremely heavy and overwhelming or just are to short like is the case of BLOODSUCKERS, but overall aren’t that bad but aren’t that good as well. BLOODSUCKERS has a lot of eerie songs so we can say that the album was released in the perfect time, right next to Halloween. In future we can only expect some better songs from VAMPS.

BLOODSUCKERS is available for all overseas fans on CDJAPAN.

Author: Nadine Silva

Reviewer and News editor at The Hand That Feeds HQ since 2012. Based in Portugal. Translation graduate. Hobbyist piano player.

One thought

  1. I completely disagree about the electronics. To me they are a huge departure from the VAMPS sound I know and love. I’m all for some experimentation but the guitars are not given enough of a focus anymore. The only reason I was able to finish this album even once is that I still love Hyde’s vocals. I don’t expect I will be listening to this anywhere near as much as the previous two albums though.

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