Yes, here it is, finally! A new UNSANE record, it will certainly fulfil a lot of curiosity. This is definitely an album a load of people have been waiting for. In the band’s long drawn history they have proven themselves (and the scene as a whole) to be a major influence on so many different kinds and styles of bands. Just take a look to the ongoing sludgy, stoner kind of doom scene, upcoming bands in that vein have nearly all drawn some kind of an influence from UNSANE – for instance, see the Codebreaker Records roster to get an impression. Just after their only MTV-hit “Scrape” (that one video with lots of skaters literally scraping their heads over the ground and breaking every bone in their body) the band came in some questionable situation. Definitely not meant to be such a success the band had to cope with more attention than they were used to. Most likely that is why this “Blood Run” is the first album since their last from 1998. What bands are able to be silent for seven years and come back with a blast? METALLICA wasn’t…
But UNSANE definitely is. The band is still that incredible Noiserock/Metal band as they were and still with that underlying uncomfortable vibe, that can, with some good-will, be labelled as Sludge. But, let’s make this clear at first, this is absolutely not for the masses and will always remain as underground and uncommercial as it can be. I always tend to compare UNSANE with a band like SONIC YOUTH, they are loved by many but hated by even more. It is just music that will not be tolerated by most of the people, I once read that somebody called UNSANE an anti-social egocentric band that only plays their music for themselves and that will most likely be the most fitting statement ever written on a band like this. Though, it makes me wonder why bands like FIGURE OF MERIT and RAGING SPEEDHORN for instance sound so much alike, they must have their fans indeed. The screaming vocals and the filthy sound is something that you really have to love, or at least learn to appreciate, I guess. Besides the mid-tempo Noise Rock songs like the brilliant “Hammered Out” we also hear some more Hardcore-oriented tracks like “D Train” which have that really old school UNSANE vibe and sounds pretty much like their aforementioned MTV-hit “Scrape”. It has that most awesome grooving kind of UNSANE heaviness. It will not be the first time that people state that UNSANE is not a real Relapse Records band, but when it comes to heaviness I think they will certainly not win the beauty contest but to the raw filthiness they are the king of all kings and therefore their place on the Relapse Records roster is fully justified.
An album that was worth the seven-year long wait… for sure. But, to be honest, I hope that we don’t need to wait another seven years for an album as brilliant as this one. It is quite obvious that they haven’t lost their leading position at this point, despite all the effort a band like ISIS is making, UNSANE is still on top of it all. Lovers of egocentric and anti-social music will have to watch out for this one, you might find your soul mate in this album! (Online July 6, 2005)