Bloodsport – Lethal Tender (2021)


Flashback to when you were a young metalhead in the 80’s.  If you’re anything like me, when you were between the ages of 10 and 15, the only thing you liked as much as metal, was wearing out VHS tapes of action movies.  

We all had our favourite action heroes too.  For me, the band was Iron Maiden, and the action hero was Van Damme – the muscles from Brussels.  

Fast forward to 2021, and I haven’t grown up at all.  Why should I? 

I still love cheesy action movies, and I still love metal, so imagine my excitement when an email lands in my inbox touting a Van Damme themed metal band from Canada.  You have my attention, but honestly, my expectations are low… 

It’s only 2 tracks spanning 13 minutes, so it’s worth a shot right?  

9 seconds in to the first track, “Lethal Tender”, I honestly have an ear to ear grin.  We are greeted with pounding rhythms and a galloping guitar, with some shredding all over the surface.  At the one minute mark, the track settles into a groovy riff that carries the song through.  

For all intents and purposes, this is power metal, and the vocals fit that perfectly.  Lots of high pitched wailing, and some excellent harmonies give this an early Queensryche vibe.  

Jumping in to this with low expectations was the right move, because I’m overjoyed with what I’m hearing.  Lethal Tender proves to be 7 minutes and 54 seconds of high spirited banger. 

Next up is “Lions Den”.  Now let’s throw back to earlier, when I said that Maiden was my favourite band back in the day (still top 4 to this day) – Lions Den is very Maidenesque.  This track wastes no time in firing up.  Everything is front a centre right from the get go, and it’s relentless until the end.  

This is a wonderfully enjoyable way to spend less than a quarter of an hour, whether you’re a Van Damme fan or not, but you might appreciate it more if you are! 

Lethal Tender was released via Nightstrike Records on March 12th, and is available on CD and Cassette. 

8/10

Shayne McGowan. 

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