September 17, 2012 Jethro Sandico

Cold Steel

I remember watching a lot of metal bands torment the ears of the unknowing masses in the late 90’s, a time when distorted guitars are a more common commodity in the Philippine music scene.  A time when having long hair and wearing Pantera shirts are the main thing. Since then I’ve witnessed bands come and go. Some would last for a few months, while some veterans of the previous decade would disappear right at the turn of the millennium.  At the turn of the millennium though, a lot of new bands have come out and so far, Boomslang has been one of the most resilient and longstanding bands we have today in our local scene’s ever-changing landscape. Boomslang has been around for more than a decade now, and they have travelled the often-perilous roads of the metal underground. They were formed in 2001 and first performed at Baguio Music Studio’s Blood Metal Wars battle of the bands way back when parking lots were one of the favorite venues for  the underground scene.

Much like the African snake the band was named after, Boomslang’s music is highly venomous. Influenced by every fuckin’ awesome metal bands of our generation, such as Slayer, Pantera, Metallica and Sepultura, the relentless style of this four piece outfit from Baguio City will cause the bleeding of your internal organs even before you can press “stop” on your player. Their music is a combination of Thrash, Groove, and Death Metal. The song structures shift from melancholic to furious, and melodic guitar and bass lines once in a while spice up the aggressive and “muscular “sound of the drums and vocals. Personally, whenever I listen to their songs, I can feel not only the pain but also the strength that comes after dealing with adversity.

Recently, the group has been focusing so much more on their original material, and the songs are coming out really tight and satisfying for every head banger like you and me and your psychotic neighbor. According to the band, lyrically, they usually tackle issues such as “politricks”, tribulations or the end of days, the horrors of war, and pride in where they came from. For me the latter adds more depth and local flavor to the band’s style (something we should be very proud of).

Pride and respect for their roots is strongly manifested in the song “Head Hunter.” Done in vintage metal fashion, a portion of the song goes “Kill, for my tribe, I’ll kill with this axe of steel” while the last part bares the lines “The river runs red, In these mountains we live, unconquered, Undead” clearly a tribute to the mountainous regions of the Cordilleras and its brave warriors of the past.

The band is working harder than ever and they are set to release their EP “Cold Steel From the North” sometime soon. Heads will fuckin roll!

Boomslang is:
Renie – Vocals
Syn – Bass
Tin – Guitar
Chino – drums

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