While this release stands in many ways as Vestal Claret's official debut, Vestal Claret have in fact been releasing eps, splits and demos as early on as 2006 with its actual formation in 2005 predating just about everything being heard in the current "occult" fashion genre at this time. There is no influence or inspiration from anything of the past 2 decades that provoked this release or it's ideas and concepts. The material on this album was all written in 2006, but with contract in hand Vestal Claret was unable to release these recordings until now.
Most of you have probably already heard this stuff on the vinyl version released in 2011 by Cyclopean Records. Vinyl contains a 'Bloodbath's' guest version, but here you are dealing with a 'Bloodbath's' band-version. Meet the Beast himself!
While metal has co-existed with the occult since its inception, Connecticut based Vestal Claret travel to the darkest realms of macabre fantasy and translate the morbid tales that they bring back to the world of man into doom-laden heavy metal masterpieces. The idea for the band was conceived in 2005, during the recording of the second Upwards of Endtime album 'Sadly Never Fore', which was fronted by doom-metal veteran Phil Swanson (Seamount, Hour of 13, Briton Rites, Earthlord, Atlantean Kodex among others). "We wanted to create an occult heavy metal/death rock project between friends", says Swanson. Simon Tuozzoli (King of Salem), who ran the studio Phil was recording in, offered to play guitar on the original 2-track demo. Soon after, Michael Petrucci (King of Salem) joined the ranks full time on drums. So Vestal Claret was born with the demo 'Two Stones', later released on Metal Coven Records, and the world has been a much darker place ever since.
Their grisly and horrific demo soon aroused the interest of label owners, and Vestal Claret was approached to write a full-length album. Unfortunately, the album never came to be, and Swanson shifted his focus to Hour of 13, where many of the original Vestal Claret concepts were revised and reused. "Vestal Claret, which literally means virgin blood, is considered a great source of power. It is an oft appearing term in Hour of 13 albums. At the time of my departure from Vestal Claret to Hour of 13, I began to see how far ahead of its time and misunderstood Vestal Claret actually was", says Swanson. Vestal Claret reformed 4 years from its inception, and the band quickly hit the studio again to record more material.
What has come is a pitch dark, yet dynamic heavy metal record. 'Bloodbath' contains almost all of the band's highly sought after demos and EP material re-recorded.