Florida's dark hardcore/metalcore pioneers Bloodlet have been dormant for over a decade (up until their performance at 2014's installment of the A389 Fest). Their brooding and swampy sound was ground breaking at the time of their existence and it was nearly impossible to get them to fit neatly into any one genre. While their earliest material was mostly straight forward 90's hardcore fare, they had evolved into this grim, atmospheric monster that swayed from slow grinding metal to crushing heavy metallic hardcore. This band was never afraid to push the envelope and for that, I feel that they were never fully embraced by the majority of the crowds who were into their contemporaries.

That musical evolution was well documented during their existence by their former label Victory Records through their debut full length Eclectic (which is really a collections of earlier singles/7" material) all the way through their final release, Three Humid Nights in the Cypress Trees. As a band that has been as inactive as long as Bloodlet has, you would think that every stone has been unturned at this point and there couldn't possibly be anything left unheard... but that isn't the case. The song "Embrace" was recorded in 1994 during the session for their Shell 7", but never saw the light of day on any release. Long-forgotten, the master of this recording sat gathering dust until unearthed by the zine XstuckinthepastX and given to A389 Recordings for release on vinyl as a rarity.

I feel that the song itself isn't very indicative of the band that Bloodlet had become, but is an incredible look back and where they had come from. In comparison to their later material, this song is much more simplistic and straight forward 90's hardcore... but the DNA of their trademark sound is very prevalent.

All in all, this is 3 minutes of very solid mid tempo hardcore from a band that went on to do incredible and innovative things within the realm of hardcore and metal. If you are a fan of Bloodlet, this is a must for your collection... however if you are just now hearing about this band, you should probably start elsewhere (I would recommend their album Entheogen).



Bloodlet - Embrace is available now from A389.