If there were still high street shops selling CDs then this lot would have a couple of things going for them from the off: It’s hard to walk past that name without stopping, and the cover is utterly fantastic. Anything else to recommend? Yeah, quite a lot actually. Quite a lot.
First thing to bear in mind is that this lot are thrash, with not a grind in sight. That’s speed metal thrashin’ mad thrash. From the opening scream this is severe neck brace territory; the kind of thrash that grabs you by the spine and waves you around like a floppy rag doll until the only thing that’s left is the sound of your teeth rattling. Screeching lead breaks? Check. Pounding tempo changes? Check. Snarling vocals? Check. Fingers scampering along fretboards like mice in an amphetamine rush? Check. Permed hair, black drainpipe jeans, denim cut offs and white hi-tops? Ok, probably not, but you get the drift.
For all that thrash checklist this is also a classy modern sound whirling around in here; bright and razor ripping sharp with a good solid drum sound keeping that flywheel spinning away and as tight as a lady gnats private parts. They are certainly not stuck in retroland either and so have a good bit of death metal pumping them when needed; a muscular solidity that reminds me of One Man Army and the Undead Quartet in some ways. Frankly they sound as happy as a boxful of puppies in shit to be here.
Songs? Oh yes. Yes we have a whole sack of those too. Songs flung out with abandon like hard candy with fishing hooks liberally sticking out. There’s a gleeful, sharp humour like a shark grin all the way through this speedfreak album; ‘Run Through The Bastards’, ‘ You’ve Been Had’, ‘Get Out Of My Grave/Gigantic Graveyard’, ‘ Iron Jaw’, ‘ Fucking Wild’. From the opener ‘Those Who Remain Unseen’ this seriously just runs away with you bouncing on a line behind it. Initially coming on all deaththrash it mixes it up with much more traditional melody and lead run hooks and classic style riffs that I soon give up trying to spot the joins. All the way through to the wonderful closer ‘Desert Goblins’ this remains breathless, top notch thrash.
Yeah maybe they could have held back two or three songs for their next split, in particular the one slower track ‘The Lurking Thief’ seems a bit lost and lacklustre here, but it’s still not that long an album and every song is it’s own few minutes of individual mayhem that find their own little niche in the brain. Maybe retro heads won’t like the death metal thunderhead here but tough ‘cos everything about this sound works and the enthusiasm that blasts from this is pretty infectious even if my bones can’t keep up any longer.
Third album and this is a nailed sound. Congratulations guys.