Digital review by: Chris Hammond
Mordred- The Dark Parade (2021)
Band: Scott Holderby–vocals, James Sanguinetti–guitars, Danny White–guitars, Art Liboon–bass, Aaron (Pause) Vaughn–keyboards, vocals, turntables, Jeff Gomes–drums
01. Demonic #7 (3:25)
02. Malignancy (3:51)
03. I Am Charlie (4:29)
04. Dragging For Bodies (6:09)
05. The Dark Parade (6:47)
06. All Eyes on the Prize (5:21)
07. Dented Lives (4:31)
08. Smash Goes The Bottle (4:54)
Mordred the San Francisco bay area band has been bending musical genres since the early eighties. Their hip-hop/groove/thrash style predates bands like Anthrax, Faith No More, Rage Against the Machine, and more. Don’t be fooled though, they thrash hard as shown on their 1991 album “In This Life”.
With countless line-up changes and even breaking up, Mordred still march on with their first full-length album in 27 years called “The Dark Parade”
With the resurgence of bands like Faith No More, Mr.Bungle, and Rage Against The Machine, Mordred’s break from new music oddly feels like they never left the music scene. The new album sounds greatly relevant especially now when melding musical genres has become commonplace. Sonically the band feels fresh and energized, especially with the lead vocals that Scott Holderby adorns this album with.
The Dark Parade starts out with the record-scratching groove-heavy “Demonic #7”. This showcases the likemindedness of the member’s statement that they are all firing musically on all cylinders. “Malignancy”, the second track on the album although more thrash/groove at heart it still feels very modern. Scott Holderby’s rap/groove vocals take center stage on the song “I am Charlie”. Does the song’s lyrics make sense, who knows, but boy does the drums and guitar solos just fire on throughout the last half of the song?
Changing things up quite a bit “Dragging for bodies” put forth the turntable and keyboard wizardry that only Aaron Vaughn can provide. This one will please FNM fans as it is just so different. The heavy metal sound is still very evident, especially on songs like “All Eyes on the Prize” and “The Dark Parade” with that Mordred spin on things of course.
Mordred gives their best Bad Brain homage on the song “Dented Lives” while “Smash Goes the Bottle” gives listeners a nice heavy eighties rock anthem to sing along with. Modred’s talent, intensity, humor, and uniqueness are all put forth extremely well on The Dark Parade. Sure, Scott’s vocal style is glaringly different from the In This Life album, but I chalk that one up to time. The material is fresh relevant and definitely fits into the musical landscape of today, this is just a helluva good time for the listeners and the band.
Rating 4.0 out of 5.0 Stars
The Dark Parade is available July 23, 2021, on many different media formats at https://mordred.company.site/