Sunday 12 June 2016

The Bendal Interlude - Reign Of The Unblinking Eye


1. Buckfast For Breakfast
2. Losing Things
3. The Unblinking Eye
4. Efram's Hands
5. Pint Of Bodies
6. Creaks Gigantic
7. Triumph Of Fortitudo
8. The Block
9. R.I.P SP-808

I'm holidaying next Saturday for a week, so I'm aiming to get a few more reviews up so that June doesn't become an entirely wasted month. I'm starting today with Liverpool's The Bendal Interlude and their recent debut full-length. They've been going for over a decade now and their line-up feature current members of SSS (Short Sharp Shock) and ex-members of TDON Recs band Heresy Of Thieves amongst others. Reign Of The Unblinking Eye was released at the start of April via UK doom/sludge/heavy label Black Bow Records and TBI immediately hit the road around the UK with Conan to support it. 

If ever there was a song that signalled a band’s intent (this being the intent to get smashed as early as possible on tour), then album opener Buckfast For Breakfast is the one. The sampled intro is stark enough but thankfully the riffs quickly wash away the guilt that you might feel about your own drinking habits. TBI’s sound is full of groove-laden riffs and thrash metal swagger. It’s high octane instead of being a slow burn. Losing Things goes in the direction of US stoner legends Clutch, but still remains unquestionably heavy. The lead work and transitions between fast and slow tempos are effortless. The Unblinking Eye provides a massive wall of sound, filled with complex yet super listenable psych. Their collective crossover influence comes across during Efram’s Hands, but it only pierces the sludge and gives way entirely for some cracking twin-guitar harmonies that really show off their musical skill. There’s something disturbingly fun about imagining a Pint of Bodies and I’d love to know the story behind the song. The song itself goes by in a flash and is a great listen. Don’t let that easy-on-the-ear stoner intro fool you, Creaks Gigantic’s hellish roars banish any hints of a band taking it easy. TBI pick up the pace again with Triumph of Fortitudo. It’s one of the heaviest songs on the record and the quartet power through it like nobody’s business. The melody that comes through during parts of The Block sounds familiar, but I don’t know where from! Maybe I’m imagining it in the trance that the riffs have put me in. Closing song R.I.P SP-808 is The Bendal Interlude at their doom-laden best. It’s no wonder then that it’s several minutes long. There you have it. A band that proves that Liverpool can’t get anymore chilled out and an album that really hits the spot. 

You can stream and download the record below:-

You can also pick up various cd, vinyl and merch packages or grab copies from Black Bow Records below:-

The Bendal Interlude Facebook -
Black Bow Records Facebook -

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