|Seven years have passed since BLOOD CEREMONY last released a full-length album, but that all changes in 2023! Pieced together during lockdown months, and brought to fruition with a host of esteemed special guests, the Canadians’ fifth album, ‘The Old Ways Remain’, is diverse, hypnotic and eminently groovy.
The new songs push BLOOD CERMEONY’s sound into new territory while also honoring the atavistic ethos that has led them to such triumphs in the past. Initial plans to repeat the successful formula that birthed ‘Lord of Misrule’ and fly to the UK to record again at Toe Rag Studios in London, fell victim to Covid restrictions, and so Sean and his comrades – Alia O’Brien (vocals/flute/organ), Lucas Gadke (bass) and Michael Carillo (drums) – switched to a simpler but equally satisfying Plan B.
“By late 2021, we realized that if we were ever going to finish a new album, we’d just have to record locally and do it ourselves,” says guitarist Sean Kennedy. “And that’s what we did. We started rehearsing the material again and were still really excited by it. Once we revisited everything, we had a new burst of energy. We found a local studio that had what we needed and we were off! Recording nearby allowed us to bring in friends like Laura Bates from (fellow folk-doom crew) Völur to play fiddle, Joseph Shabason added saxophone to ‘Eugenie’, and Mike Eckert played pedal steel on ‘Hecate’. We produced ourselves, along with our friend, Paul Keyahas. We worked with an engineer named Chris Snow who immediately got what we were trying to do. Richard Whittaker mixed the tracks at his London, UK, studio, and we think he did a great job.”
A vital testament to BLOOD CEREMONY’s collective efficacy, ‘The Old Ways Remain’ is an album for those who love great songs, great riffs and cryptic tales from the outer limits.