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CD review ANTHRAX "Kings Among Scotland"

Veröffentlicht am 26. April 2018 von Markus W. in Anthrax, Kings Among Scotland, Nuclear Blast, News, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Crossover, Live, Heavy Metal, Among the Kings Tour, Tour

CD review ANTHRAX "Kings Among Scotland"

(*/10) East-Coast thrash pioneers Anthrax played a show at Barrowland Blallroom in Glasgow, Scotland on February 15th, 2017. The show was part of the band’s “Among the Kings”-tour and was built very much around the legendary “Among the Living” album which was performed in its entirety.

The show was filmed and recorded, leading to this new Anthrax release entitled “Kings Among Scotland” of which the CD version is the base for this review. Next to the CD version the release will be available in other formats too, like DVD and BluRay, which gives you an additional visual impression of this intense metal show.

Listening to this live release feels like a journey back in time. Next to the brilliant “Among the Living” album also other highlights from the past found a way on the setlist of this show. Songs like the opener “A.I.R” and “Medusa” are still timeless classics in thrash metal that secure together with new material (“Breathing Lightning” and “Evil Twins”) a seamless thrash metal experience for fans of excellent metal music. This isn’t a coincidence knowing that fans voted on pre-show.

“Kings Among Scotland” is a live album that captures the energy of an Anthrax show in a really good fashion. This five-piece band from NYC belongs to the spearhead of thrash metal and releases, like the current one, shows that these five guys still have a huge appetite for metal and that’s what this live album states in a perfect fashion.  

 

(*/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. A.I.R.
  2. Madhouse
  3. Evil Twin
  4. Medusa
  5. Blood Eagle Wings
  6. Fight ‘Em Til You Can’t
  7. Be All, End All
  8. Breathing Lightning
  9. Among the Living
  10. Caught in a Mosh
  11. One World
  12. I Am the Law
  13. A Skeleton in the Closet
  14. Efilgnikcufecin (N.F.L.)
  15. A.D.I. Horror of it All
  16. Indians
  17. Imitation of Life
  18. Antisocial

 

Label: Nuclear Blast 

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: April 27th, 2018

Kommentare

CD review RIOT V "Armor of Light"

Veröffentlicht am 22. April 2018 von Markus W. in Riot, Riot V, Armor of Light, News, Heavy Metal, Power Metal, Speed Metal, NWoBHM, CD Review, Nuclear Blast

CD review RIOT V "Armor of Light"

(8/10) I discovered Riot quite late. It was the brilliant 1988 release "Thundersteel" that caught my attention and I had to work backwards when it comes to the band's discography. However, from this moment on Riot belongs to my favourite metal outfits.

A critical moment for Riot was the year 2012 when founding member Mark Reale passed away. Could the band continue without the iconic axeman or do we have to face the end of Riot? Fortunately the quintet went on even though they slightly adjusted the band's name to Riot V. "Unleash the Fire" was the first album of this renewed powerhouse, a longplayer that was critically acclaimed and very well received by fans.

Almost to date four years later, the next Riot V longplayer will be unveiled. The band signed with Nuclear Blast and "Armor of Light" is the first record for the new label, being number 16 in total in Riot's history.

30 years after me enjoying "Thundersteel" for the first time it is ​​​​​​"Armor of Light" that is a new delight for metal fans. Things start very successful with a track entitled "Victory". This song is far more than just a bread and butter track. It's a classic metal anthem that reminds of the earlier Iron Maiden when it comes to vocal lines and rhythmic. 

Another highlight, framed by only killer tracks, is the title song "Armor of Light". The uptempo tune includes everything you can ask for. Furious guitars, a breathtaking pace and frontman Todd Michael Hall who's a real metal siren. Riot V finds with each of the tunes the magic balance between melodic parts and crushing riffs, both creating something big together rather than competing with each other. It's a combination that creates a terrific sonic pattern and it was producer Chris Collier (Metal Church, Slipknot, Korn) who gave "Armor of Light" the aggressiveness and dynamic needed.

"Armor of Light" is a great next album of Riot V. It proves that the decision to continue was the only senseful one. I'm sure, the metal community will receive this longplayer with open arms. Riot V is still hungry and so are fans of the powerhouse. Horns up.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Victory

  2. End of the World

  3. Messiah

  4. Angel's Thunder, Devil;s Reign

  5. Burn the Daylight

  6. Heart of the Lion

  7. Armor of Light

  8. Set the World Alight

  9. San Antonio

  10. Caught in the Witches Eye

  11. Ready to Shine

  12. Raining Fire

 

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: March 27th, 2018

Kommentare

REFUGE (Peavy Wagner and former RAGE members) announce a new album

Veröffentlicht am 19. April 2018 von Markus W. in Refuge, Rage, Peavy Wagner, News, Heavy Metal, Power Metal, Speed Metal, Frontiers Music

REFUGE (Peavy Wagner and former RAGE members) announce a new album

REFUGE marks the reunion of the original, and probably most successful, line-up of the German metal band RAGE, featuring Peavy Wagner, Manni Schmidt, & Christos Efthimiadis. After 1994, when the three originally parted ways, they moved on to work in different bands and follow their own musical path. Peavy kept on with Rage, Manni went to Grave Digger, and Christos off to Tri State Corner. After a long period during which they did not have much contact, the three guys met up again in 2014 and decided to play a secret show in their hometown Herne (Germany), under the moniker “Tres Hombres”. The show was never promoted, apart from word of mouth and social media rumblings and as a result, this show became one where you had to be "in the know", but more than 1200 fans found their way to the gig anyway. The band performed all the hits from their time together in RAGE and loved every second of that gig, getting hungry for more, thus the idea of “REFUGE” was born. 

 

REFUGE played a couple of hugely successful festival shows all throughout Europe in the summer of 2015. The audiences’ reactions to the ‘RAGE – songs of 1988 – 1993’ were truly overwhelming and exceeded all expectations the band had. So, more shows were played in 2016, including three in Japan (Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka), exactly 20 years after they had played their last shows together, coincidentally also in Japan!

 

"The band sounds nearly the same like back then, maybe a bit more relaxed, mature, with more individual experience,” tells Peavy Wagner. "But the general vibe is still the same. We know each other blindly. In order to write the songs, we created the same set-up we had 30 years ago. We rented the same rehearsal room and jammed together in a live situation and the magic was back! I'm glad that we could use and finalize some of our ideas from back then, stuff that we couldn´t use in that days for several reasons. The song “Waterfalls”, for example, was always one of my unfinished favourites. I´m proud we were able to bring it to light now, finally!"

 

What started out as a “fun thing” in 2014 has turned into a real band again. “We want to continue doing this together as long as possible, it is a manifestation of our reborn old friendship and it is a "coming from the heart" thing for us to do it,” concludes Peavy. 

 

Refuge’s debut album, ‘Solitary Men’ is the first album of original material from this classic Rage line-up in 25 years and will surely satisfy fans who remember those now legendary albums! Up the horns for REFUGE!

             

Tracklist:

1.         Summer's Winter

2.         The Man In The Ivory Tower

3.         Bleeding From Inside

4.         From The Ashes

5.         Living On The Edge Of Time

6.         We Owe A Life To Death

7.         Mind Over Matter

8.         Let Me Go

9.         Hell Freeze Over

10.       Waterfalls

11.       Another Kind Of Madness (Bonus Track)

 

 

Band Members:

Peavy Wagner – bass & vocals

Manni Schmidt - guitars

Christos Efthimiadis - drums

Kommentare

CD review SPEEDCLAW "Beast in the Mist" EP

Veröffentlicht am 16. April 2018 von Markus W. in Speedclaw, News, CD Review, Shadow Kingdom, Beast in the Mist, Heavy Metal, NWoBHM, Speed Metal, Power Metal

CD review SPEEDCLAW "Beast in the Mist" EP

(7/10) Usually Croatia is known for excellent weather from spring to autumn with a summer vibe and beach-life included. But there’s also some metal that’s based in the country along the Mediterranean Sea coastline. Speedclaw, hailing from Rijeka, Croatia, is such a band that upholds the flag of heavy metal in the South Eastern parts of Europe.

Founded in 2015 the quartet unveiled a first EP in 2016. “Iron Speed” featured six tracks of which one was a cover of Exciters’ classic “Heavy Metal Maniac”. The choice of this song tells a lot about the sound you can expect from Speedclaw. The guys are heavily into traditional metal music that has its roots in the NWoBHM.

It was more than once that the second EP “Beast in the Mist” reminded me of Iron Maiden in the earlier days. The way guitar and bass are weaved into the songs clearly flags a main source of inspiration. Songs like the uptempo “Faster Than Hell” with its furious leads or the merciless “Evil Than You See” are perfect songs.

None of the tunes is a copycat of any NWoBHM band, esp. due to the coarse voice of frontman Silvano Cosic. But also the raging speed of “Aggression Strikes” makes a difference and refers to early speed metal.

“Beast in the Mist” is an EP with a cool entertainment factor, taking the listener back to a time when metal started to gain momentum – a time machine into the mid 80’s that you should enter for 30 minutes metal adventure.

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Prelude
  2. Beast in the Mist
  3. Faster Than Hell
  4. Rising of the Claw
  5. Aggression Strikes
  6. Evil That You See

 

Label: Shadow Kingdom

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: February 2nd, 2018

Kommentare

CD review TRAITOR "Knee-Deep in the Dead"

Veröffentlicht am 10. April 2018 von Markus W. in Traitor, Thrash Metal, Knee-Deep in the Dead, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, CD Review, News, Violent Creek

CD review TRAITOR "Knee-Deep in the Dead"

(8/10) South-German thrashers Traitor premiered in 2012 with the critically acclaimed “Thrash Command” release and it was the sophomore album “Venomizer” that strengthened the positive impression. 2018 is the year for the groundbreaking third album, entitled “Knee-Deep in the Dead”.

The new longplayer comes with everything fans of thrash metal could ask for. It begins with the artwork that’s inspired by the book and video game called “Doom” which some of you might know. No less than Ed Repka, known from his work with bands like Megadeth, contributed with an artwork that identifies an album immediately as being a thrash metal one.

But it’s not only the visuals that bring back some 80’s thrash vibes. Each of the 11 songs (10 tracks plus a cover version), live up to expectations. Traitor fires on all cylinders when it comes to the third album. Inspired by bands like Kreator, the band crafted songs with venomous riffs, furious solos and an extremely aggressive rhythm-section. The double pack in the beginning clearly gives direction of what to expect from the album. “Mad Dictator” and “Predator (Skinned Alive)” are excellent thrash metal anthems that might not bring too much new to the table but it’s the embedded power and passion for metal that makes the album sticking out from the masses. It doesn’t need a lot of loops to get into the songs. Each of the songs is a joyful experience for listeners, rounded off by the well-done interpretation of Ramones’ “Blitzkrieg Bop’, which has a great tempo break towards the end.

Traitor's third album showcases a band that’s young, wild and hungry.  These guys are energizers and I guess we will hear a lot more of them in the future, Real stuff for headbangers.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Mad Dictator
  2. Predator (Skinned Alive)
  3. Nuke 'em All
  4. Ebola
  5. Pieces of Pale
  6. Demonic Possession
  7. At the Gates of Hell 
  8. Knee-Deep in the Dead
  9. Xenomorph
  10. Crucification
  11. Blitzkrieg Bop (Ramones Cover)

 

Label: Violent Creek

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: April 27th, 2018

Kommentare

CD review DEATHROW "Riders of Doom" / "Raging Steel" / "Deception Ignored" - re-issues

Veröffentlicht am 31. März 2018 von Markus W. in Deathrow, Raging Steel Riders of Doom, Deception Ignored, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review, Noise lebt!, BMG

(7/10), (8/10), (8/10) German thrash metal from the mid 80's seems to have a revival these days. Bands like Exumer and Accuser released new longplayers during the last couple of years, the eight first Kreator records have been re-issued as being part of the 'Noise lebt!' campaign and now it's Deathrow that gets back on the radar.

Deathrow started as Samhain in 1984. Milo, Thomas Priebe, Sven Flügge and Markus Hahn recorded a first demo in 1985 and one year later the debut was complete. At the same time the band changed name from Samhain to Deathrow, mainly due to Glenn Danzig's band with the same name.

CD review DEATHROW "Riders of Doom" / "Raging Steel" / "Deception Ignored" - re-issues

"Riders of Doom" is the first album from the Ruhrpott-based quartet and it was originally released as "Satan's Gift". Even though Deathrow stood in the mighty shadow of bands like Kreator, Sodom and Destruction, the debut was highly acclaimed by fans. The quartet stood for authentic thrash metal that was raw and rough around the edges. The album achieved a cult status in the metallic underground and was more than just a decent result of hard work. In addition to this merciless aggressiveness Deathrow's sound included quite impressive guitar work with furious leads and solos. Songs like "Riders of Doom" and "Satans Gift" are still well crafted Teutonic thrash metal tracks that didn't loose any power over the last three decades. The re-issue of the album also includes some extras in the form of three demo songs and three songs from the rehearsal room.

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Winds Of Death
  2. Satan’s Gift
  3. Riders Of Doom
  4. Hell’s Ascent
  5. Spider Attack
  6. Slaughtered
  7. Violent Omen
  8. Dark Tales
  9. Samhain

Bonus Tracks

  1. Hell’s Ascent (demo)
  2. Samhain (demo)
  3. Riders Of Doom (demo)
  4. Night of The Wolf (rehearsal)
  5. Run (rehearsal)
  6. Screams of Pain (rehearsal)

 

CD review DEATHROW "Riders of Doom" / "Raging Steel" / "Deception Ignored" - re-issues

The sophomore album, "Raging Steel", followed twelve months later and showcased a band that developed sound and musical skills. Still being as unpolished as the debut "Raging Steel" came with improved song writing and a better production. Songs like two parts of "Scattered by the Wind" are thrash metal anthems from the underground, built on influences of bands like Possessed. As with "Riders of Doom" also the second longplayer includes some extra songs - in this case demo tracks and a live version of "Yigael's Wall".

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. The Dawn
  2. Raging Steel
  3. Scattered By The Wind (Part 1)
  4. Scattered By The Wind (Part 2)
  5. Dragon’s Blood
  6. The Thing Within
  7. Pledge To Die
  8. Mortal Dread
  9. The Undead Cry
  10. Beyond The Light

Bonus Tracks

  1. Intro (demo)
  2. Slaughtered (demo)
  3. Violent Omen (demo)
  4. Riders Of Doom (demo)
  5. Samhain (demo)
  6. Yigael’s Wall (live)
CD review DEATHROW "Riders of Doom" / "Raging Steel" / "Deception Ignored" - re-issues

The triple of releases gets completed by Deathrow's "Deception Ignored". The longplayer was released in 1989 and marks the last album the thrash powerhouse unleashed for Noise Records. Even though Deathrow's sound is still built on thrash the third longplayer shows a big step forward when it comes to songwriting and complexity. The raw and harsh sounds of the debut evolved to a progressive metal album that finds a peak in "Narcotic", which is a 9 minutes progressive epos that impressive with complex sound structures and intricate elements. This album includes just a single bonus track, which is the so far unreleased "Bureaucracy" which comes from the recording session for "Deception Ignored"

These three longplayers made Deathrow to a legendary underground band from Germany and the re-issues make the albums available for fans of 80's thrash metal. 

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Events In Concealment
  2. The Deathwish
  3. Triocton
  4. N.L.Y.H.
  5. Watching The World
  6. Narcotic
  7. Machinery

Bonus Track

  1. Bureacrazy
Kommentare

CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

Veröffentlicht am 3. März 2018 von Markus W. in Kreator, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, News, CD Review, Re-releases, Heavy Metal, Coma of Souls, Outcast, Renewal, Cause of Conflict

CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

(8/10) (7/10) (7/10) (8/10) German thrash metal pioneers Kreator recently delighted fans with re-releases of the band’s first four classics - “Endless Pain”, Pleasure to Kill”, “Terrible Certainty” and “Extreme Aggression”. These four albums were not only crucial milestones for the band from Essen, Germany; they are and were trend-setting when it comes to European thrash metal. Their re-release was very well received by Kreator fans who also expressed their wish for more Kreator records to be re-issued.

The wish was heard and the next four longplayers will hit the shelfs as we speak. “Coma of Souls”, “Renewal”, “Cause For Conflict” and “Outcast” have been remastered, will be available in different formats and as it was with the re-issues of the first four albums also this time it’s bonus material that enriches the original classics. Last but not least each of these four longplayers includes a comprehensive booklet with lyrics, photos an liner notes that gives context to the album and the days when ti was created.

CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

(8/10) After having had huge success with the first releases the fifth album “Coma Of Souls” saw the light of day in 1990. The album still shows Kreator’s harsh way of interpreting metal. The longplayer is a logical continuation of what Mille and bandmates published with “Extreme Aggression”. What’s different though is the second guitar. Frank Blackfire joined the band, which led to a bit more complexity when it comes to the songs and songwriting. Still sticking to their roots, “Coma of Souls” is innovative and dynamic, showing a band that grew over time without becoming predictable and standardized when it comes to their sound and attitude.

The re-mastered version also includes a second disc that features a live show the band performed in Fuerth, Germany on December 6th, 1990. Fifteen songs provide an excellent overview about the band’s highlights to date, captured in an authentic way and with a good level of sound.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist Coma of Souls

CD 1:

  1. When the Sun Burns Red (2018 - Remaster)
  2. Coma of Souls (2018 - Remaster)
  3. People of the Lie (2018 - Remaster)
  4. World Beyond (2018 - Remaster)
  5. Terror Zone (2018 - Remaster)
  6. Agents of Brutality (2018 - Remaster)
  7. Material World Paranoia (2018 - Remaster)
  8. Twisted Urges (2018 - Remaster)
  9. Hidden Dictator (2018 - Remaster)
  10. Mental Slavery (2018 - Remaster)

CD 2:

  1. When the Sun Burns Red (Live)
  2. Betrayer (Live)
  3. Terrible Certainty (Live)
  4. Extreme Aggression (Live)
  5. Coma of Souls (Live)
  6. People of the Lie (Live)
  7. Choir of the Damned (Live)
  8. The Pestilence (Live)
  9. Toxic Trace (Live)
  10. Drum Solo (Live)
  11. Terror Zone (Live)
  12. Pleasure to Kill (Live)
  13. Flag of Hate (Live)
  14. Agents of Brutality (Live)
  15. Riot of Violence (Live)
  16. Tormentor (Live)
CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

(7/10) “Renewal” is the next Kreator longplayer and omen et nomen. Two years after “Coma of Souls” was excessively celebrated, Kreator started to experiment with their music which led to controversial discussions. Industrial and hardcore gained momentum in the 90’s, styles that also impacted “Renewal”. Industrial influences couldn’t be more obvious than what is expressed with the instrumental “Realitaetsverlust”. Cold industrial beats combined in a aseptic sound collage is something that’s totally unusual for the Essen-based metal legends and  the following “Zero to None” comes with a surprising twist too. The song belongs to the hardcore inspired ones on this record and shows Kreator’s open mind for experimenting with new sound influences.

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist Renewal

  1. Winter Martyrium (2018 - Remaster)
  2. Renewal (2018 - Remaster)
  3. Reflection (2018 - Remaster)
  4. Brainseed (2018 - Remaster)
  5. Karmic Wheel (2018 - Remaster)
  6. Realitätskontrolle (2018 - Remaster)
  7. Zero to None (2018 - Remaster)
  8. Europe After the Rain (2018 - Remaster)
  9. Depression Unrest (2018 - Remaster)
  10. Winter Martyrium (Rare Version) (2018 - Remaster)
  11. Trauma (2018 - Remaster)
  12. Europe After the Rain (Remix) [2018 - Remaster]
CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

(7/10)“Renewal” was the last record that was done for Noise Records. The band inked a deal with Gun Records and debut on the new label with “Cause of Conflict”. The album was published in 1995 and included a completely new rhythm section. Christian Giesler took over bass duties while Joe Cangelosi was hired as drummer for “Cause of Conflict”. As with the predecessor, also Kreator’s seventh album showcased the band in an experimental phase. “Outcast” reflects the effort of combining old and new, an endeavor that partly led to pretty good songs like “Progressive Proletarians”. However, the album isn’t a highlight in Kreator’s rich discography, but it was certainly needed on the bands journey into the premier league of thrash metal.

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist Cause of Conflict

  1. Prevail (2018 - Remaster)
  2. Catholic Despot (2018 - Remaster)
  3. Progressive Proletarians (2018 - Remaster)
  4. Crisis Of Disorder (2018 - Remaster)
  5. Hate Inside Your Head (2018 - Remaster)
  6. Bomb Threat (2018 - Remaster)
  7. Man Without God (2018 - Remaster)
  8. Lost (2018 - Remaster)
  9. Dogmatic (2018 - Remaster)
  10. Sculpture Of Regret (2018 - Remaster)
  11. Celestial Deliverance (2018 - Remaster)
  12. Isolation (2018 - Remaster)
  13. Suicide In Swamps (2018 - Remaster)
  14. Limits Of Liberty (2018 - Remaster)
  15. State Oppression (2018 - Remaster)
CD review KREATOR "Coma of Souls" / "Renewal" / "Cause of Conflict" / "Outcast" - reissues

(8/10) “Outcast” was Kreator’s next strike, an album that was released in 1997. Drummer Ventor returned to the thrash powerhouse and also a new guitarist has been hired. Tommy Vetterli joined Kreator and what sticks out with this longplayer is the reduced pace. Kreator was known for extreme metal songs with a high speed approach. It was the furious rage of the early longplayers that fascinated fans and reducing tempo was something that wasn’t appreciated by everybody. No doubt, there are some unusual tracks on the album of with “Black Sunrise” is one. However, the album also contains with “Phobia” one of the best songs Mille ever wrote for Kreator and also “Stronger Than Before” belongs to the highlights on the album.

As with “Cause of Conflict” also “Outcast” comes with a live CD that’s added to the re-release. This time it’s a show Kreator played at Dynamo in Eindhoven, The Netherlands in 1998. The live disc comprises of ten songs and also features a live version of “Phobia” that goes perfectly together with classics such as “Pleasure to Kill” and “Extreme Aggression”.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist Outcast

CD 1:

  1. Leave This World Behind (2018 - Remaster)
  2. Phobia (2018 - Remaster)
  3. Forever (2018 - Remaster)
  4. Black Sunrise (2018 - Remaster)
  5. Nonconformist (2018 - Remaster)
  6. Enemy Unseen (2018 - Remaster)
  7. Outcast (2018 - Remaster)
  8. Stronger Than Before (2018 - Remaster)
  9. Ruin of Life (2018 - Remaster)
  10. Whatever It May Take (2018 - Remaster)
  11. Alive Again (2018 - Remaster)
  12. Against the Rest (2018 - Remaster)
  13. A Better Tomorrow (2018 - Remaster)

CD 2:

  1. Intro: Dr. Wagner [Part 3] (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  2. Terror Zone (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  3. Lost (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  4. Leave This World Behind (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  5. Phobia (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  6. Black Sunrise (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  7. Choir of the Damned (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  8. Pleasure to Kill (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  9. Whatever It May Take (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  10. Extreme Aggression (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)
  11. Renewal (Live At Dynamo Open Air 1998) (2018 - Remaster)

To sum up. Each these four albums showcases a band that’s experimenting and developing. Some of these experiments have been highly successful (like “Phobia”) while some others were solely needed to evolve. Anyhow, each of these albums was necessary for Kreator to get to where they are today. Kreator isn’t about conformity. Mille and Kreator are authentic and are led their creativity and curiosity without sticking to limitations and restrictions. That’s what these four records stand for and that’s what brought Kreator to the highly acclaimed status they have in the here and now.

Kommentare

CD review TANKARD "Hymns For the Drunk"

Veröffentlicht am 31. Dezember 2017 von Markus W. in Tankard, News, CD Review, Compilation, Hymns For the Drunk, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, AFM

CD review TANKARD "Hymns For the Drunk"

(*/10) There is a lot of Tankard these days. Noise/BMG re-released the first seven Tankard album, incl. the "Alien"-EP and the Tankwart cover album - all with a great booklet and liner notes, showing a passion for details. These seven CD cover Tankards 80's and 90's highlights before the guys left Noise and went to Century Media for two albums. 

In the beginning of the new millennium the quartet from Mainhatten inked a deal with AFM Records for some recordss and it's these years that are combined on the "Hymns For the Drunk" compilation. 

"B-Day" was the first longplayer that came via AFM Records and it's tracks like "Rectifier" and "Need Money For Beer" which represent the 2002 longplayer. The last album for the label was "Vol(l)ume 14", a record that included thrashers such as "Time Warp" and "Rules for Fools". I would have appreciated "Black Plague (BP) being part of the compilation too, but you can't get it all. 

You might wonder why there are songs like "Zombie Attack" and "The Morning After" on this releases since the songs are from the Noise-years. The thing is that Tankard re-recorded these classics for the 2007 "Best Case Scenario: 25 years in Beer". This album was published by AFM and that's why the tracktlist contains the classics too. 

All in all "Hymns For the Drunk" is a comprehensive compilation that shows German thrash metal warriors in their post Noise years, enriched with some classics no Tankard fan should miss. 

 

(*/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Rectifier
  2. Need Money For Beer
  3. New Liver Please!
  4. Slipping From Reality
  5. Die With A Beer In Your Hand
  6. We’re Coming Back
  7. We Still Drink The Old Ways
  8. The Beauty And The Beast
  9. Metaltometal
  10. Zombie Attack
  11. (Empty) Tankard
  12. The Morning After
  13. Medley (Alcohol, Puke, Mon Cheri, Wonderful Life)
  14. Octane Warriors
  15. Stay Thirsty!
  16. Time Warp
  17. Rules For Fools

 

Label: AFM Records

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: January 12th, 2017

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CD review ANVIL "Pounding the Pavement"

Veröffentlicht am 30. Dezember 2017 von Markus W. in Anvil, Pounding the Pavement, Heavy Metal, Power Metal, Speed Metal, News, CD Review, Steamhammer, SPV

CD review ANVIL "Pounding the Pavement"

(8/10) The story of Anvil is an emotional rollercoaster, the story of a band that never gave up, following their passion. These guys are a role model for staying true to themselves and fighting for what you live for. Anvil is more than just a a band. Anvil is a matter of heart. 

Records like "Metal on Metal" and "Forged by Fire" have been excellent metal longplayers before the 90's made life difficult for the trio from Toronto, Ontario. Anvil went through some tough times, all summarised and documented in a perfect fashion in "Anvil: The Story of Anvil". This documentary is a masterpiece, focussing on Lips and Ro Reiner and their willpower when it comes to metal and Anvil.

It was this film that marked a turning point for the Canadian trio. Anvil were all of a sudden talk of the town with a lot of attention for the band and positive reactions for the documentary. Things started to turn into something more positive and Anvil got the chance to make hay while the sun is shining. The guys started to work on new songs and released a next longplayer in 2011. "Juggernaut of Justice" was the first one after the trio inked a deal with Steamhammer with "Hope in Hell" and "Anvil is Anvil" following, both excellent metal record too with a lot of firepower.

"Pounding the Pavement" is Anvil's next hammer blow that contains twelve new metal smashers per excellence. As with the earlier albums also the newest one isn't built on any compromises. The trio presents another excellent longplayer that proves the fact that metal has nothing to do with age.

Tracks like the merciless "Ego" belong to the best Anvil ever wrote and recorded. A song can't be more spot-on than this awesome piece of music. Anvil pushes the pedal to the metal more than once. The Motörhead-inspired "Black Smoke" is one of the songs that clarifies why Anvil belongs to the first generation of first speed metal bands.
Next to these furious songs Lips, Rob and Chris also put a foot on the break here and there. Mid-tempo stampers like "Bitch in the Box" and "Nanook of the North" are awesome riff monsters, sonic beauties for every true metal fan. Furthermore the spirit if rock'n'roll is the foundation for the well-done "Rock That Shit" and it's the grooving "World of Tomorrow" that rounds off a more than well-crafted metal record.

"Pounding the Pavement" became a superb longplayer of a band that lives for metal music. A metal collection without this longplayer isn't one.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Bitch in the Box
  2. Black Smoke
  3. Doing What I Want
  4. Don't Tell Me
  5. Ego
  6. Let it Go
  7. Nanook of the North
  8. Pounding the Pavement
  9. Rock That Shit
  10. Smash Your Face
  11. Warming Up
  12. World of Tomorrow

 

Label: Steamhammer/SPV

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: January 19th, 2018

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CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

Veröffentlicht am 28. Dezember 2017 von Markus W. in Tankard, Noise Lebt, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Reissue, CD Review, News

German beer and Äppelwoin passionists Tankard started their thrash attack back in 1986 with their debut "Zombie Attack". The guys started four years prior to their first release as Avenger before they changed into Vortex the same year. Last but not least Gerre and Co. introduced Tankard as the bands moniker in 1983 and since then the guys are a constant force in metal. Uniting thrash metal and an unbound fun factor made Tankard to a unique band that released excellent metal albums without taking music and life too serious.
As part of the Noise Lebt! campaign also Tankard's 'Noise years' get a revival with the first seven longplayer being reissued.
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

Zombie Attack (Release Date: November 24th, 2017)

Tankard's debut hit the shelves in 1986. Entitled "Zombie Attack" the album is a raw piece of metal music. This album isn't about musical filigree. This longplayer is a soundtrack for a rock solid metal party, featuring songs that are mainly taken from the "Alcoholic Metal"-demo. It was the demo that led to a contract with Noise Records, the start of a cooperation that went on for many years. "Zombie Attack" is a wolfish mixture of punk and metal, showcasing a band that didn't accept any limitations and boundaries.


Tracklist:

  1. Zombie Attack
  2. Acid Death
  3. Mercenary
  4. Manic Forces
  5. Alcohol
  6. (Empty) Tankard
  7. Thrash Till Death
  8. Chains
  9. Poison
  10. Screamin' Victims
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

Chemical Invasion (Release Date: November 24th, 2017)

The debut brought some first attention. The fact that "Zombie Attack" was well-received acted as a motivator for working on the sophomore longplayer. "Chemical Invasion" is the name of the band's second record, featuring songs that are still furious but also include some more musical evolvement. Nine new songs, sandwiched between an intro and outro are merciless thrash anthems. Tankard is based on fun and passion for metal and beer. These guys never focussed on commercial success and it was this authentic dedication that gave them the credibility needed. What was surprising with "Chemical Invasion" is the fact that the longplayer includes with "For a Thousand Beers" and "Traitor" two almost epical songs with seven minutes of length. These songs showed the potential of the band and are a first sign that Tankard is more than just a bunch of metal ruffians. Last but not least Tankard began also with cover songs that ended up on their early records. It's Gang Green's "Alcohol" that found a spot on the tracklist and Tankard's version is at least as good as the original from Boston's drinking companions.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Intro
  2. Total Addiction
  3. T antrum
  4. Don't Panic
  5. Puke
  6. For a Thousand Beers
  7. Chemical Invasion
  8. Farewell to a Skut
  9. Traitor
  10. Alcohol
  11. Outro
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

The Morning After (Release Date: November 24th, 2017)

Twelve months after "Chemical Invasion" underlined Tankard's status it was "The Morning After" being the crucial third longplayer. 1988 was an iconic year when it comes to German thrash metal. Bands like Kreator, Tankard and Sodom faced a constantly growing fanbase and it was Tankard that completed this new wave of German thrash metal.
"The Morning After" still belongs to the best the guys from Frankfurt ever released. Tunes like "TV Hero", "The Morning After" and "Help Yourself" are excellent thrash anthems with pure riff-power. The guys developed their sound to a level that gave them more options when it comes to song writing without losing the initial power signature that made and still makes Tankard to a legend in thrash metal.
As with "Chemical Invasion" also the third album includes a cover version, showing the bands passion for hardcore. This time it's "Try Again" from German/American powerhouse Spermbirds that got a metallic expression and as with "Alcohol" also "Try Again" paid tribute to the original, sticking to the initial sound by adding a fresh punch to these killers.

After having lived a life on the fast-lane for some years the quintet decided to release an EP for bridging the waiting time till the next studio longplayer. "Alien" was published in 1989 and comprises five songs, including the Rose Tattoo cover "Remedy". It also introduced the 'green alien', the little monster that's alive as a mascot up-to-date.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Intro
  2. Commandments
  3. Shit-Faced
  4. TV Hero
  5. F.U.N.
  6. Try Again
  7. The Morning After
  8. Desperation
  9. Feed the Lohocla
  10. Help Yourself
  11. Mon Cheri
  12. Outro
  13. Alien
  14. 666 Packs
  15. Live to Die
  16. Remedy
  17. (Empty) Tankard
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

The Meaning of Life (Release Date: January 26th, 2018)

Building on the achievements of the 80's Tankard went into the new century with "The Meaning of Life". The horror theme, which was present on the debut, slowly disappeared and the passion for beer remained. Songs like "Beermuda" and "Space Beer" are excellent metal tracks, spreading a fascination up till now. Next to these 'trademarks' also some political messages got more space on "The Meaning of Life". Tankard wasn't and ins't a political band who's 'preaching' a message. However, the artwork and also tracks like "Dancing on Our Grave" prove that Tankard records are more than booze and party.
This reissues also contains five live songs, recorded at the 'Thrashing East Festival' which took place on March 4th, 1990 at Werner-Seelenbinder-Halle in East Berlin.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Open All Night
  2. We Are Us
  3. Dancing on Our Grave
  4. Mechanical Man
  5. Beermuda
  6. The Meaning of Life
  7. Space Beer
  8. Always Them
  9. Wheel of Rebirth
  10. Barfly
  11. Wonderful Life
  12. The Morning After (Live)
  13. Commandments (Live)
  14. Alien (Live)
  15. Open All Night (Live)
  16. Maniac Forces (Live)
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

Stone Cold Sober (Release Date: January 26th, 2018)

During the 90's life didn't become easier for metal bands. Grunge gained momentum, giving many traditional metal bands a hard time. Some bands slightly adjusted their sound while Tankard sticked to their guns. The Frankfurt-based band delivered with "Stone Cold Sober" another brutal thrash metal album. Still being rough and wild the guys continued added a meaning to their songs and lyrics. "Juristiction" is about justice that's only existing for people with money while the small ones always get caught. Also "Sleeping with the Past" is a very political song. The quintet got mature over time without losing the fun of life and their twinkle in the eye.
Gerre & Co. also sticked to the tradition of having a cover song on the album. This time it was "Centerfold" that got a thrashy expression a la Tankard.
Last but not least "Stone Cold Sober" was the first album that included a song with German lyrics. "Freibier" is the name of the song that was pretty unique in 1992 but also inspirend the band to do some more stuff in their native language.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Jurisdiction
  2. Broken Image
  3. Mindwild
  4. Ulgly Beauty
  5. Centerfold
  6. Behind the Back
  7. Stone Cold Sober
  8. Blood, Guts and Rock'n'Roll
  9. Lost and Found (Tantrum Part 2)
  10. Sleeping With the Past
  11. Freibier
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

Two-Faced (Release Date: January 26th, 2018)

Tankard‘s sixth studio album saw the light of day in 1993. The recording took place at Musiclab Studios in Berlin and it was again Harris Johns being the producer for "Two-Faced". Like with the latest records Tankard tried to take things in a wider context than purely being reduced to beer and drinking. The artwork, done gain by Sebastian Kruger, mirrors the title in an excellent fashion. On the one hand there is the boringly traditional business man while there is the dark monster too, bringing the freak into the forefront. The title track itself is one of the best Tankard songs to date and hopefully the guys will put the classic back on the their setlists. The fun factor is captured on "Two-Faced" as well, thinking about "Cities in Flames" which is full of metal cliches - from beginning to end.
Sticking to the concept demands another cover version. This time it was "Ich brauch' meinen Suff" from German punk band Strassenjungs, combining the bands passion for punk and continues with the German lyrics experiment.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Death Penalty
  2. R.T.V.
  3. Betrayed
  4. Nation Over Nation
  5. Days of the Gu
  6. Cities in Flames
  7. Up From Zero
  8. Two-Faced
  9. Ich brauch' meinen Suff
  10. Cyberworld
  11. Mainhattan
  12. Jimmy B. Bad
CD review TANKARD reissues - Noise lebt!

The Tankard / Aufgetankt (Release Date: January 26th, 2018)

The Noise years came closer to an end and it was "The Tankard" that stands for the final chapter of this era. The band from 'Mainhattan' was well-known for the excellent artwork and therefor it was a horrible experience to see the one that made it on "The Tankard". Sebastian Kruger did a fantastic job and it was his fine pieces of art that gave Tankard also a visual identity. And since Kruger didn‘t have time for this album things ended up badly.
Next to the horrible packaging the band became a quartet with Axel Katzmann leaving due to health issues. It‘s this loss that‘s one of the reasons why "The Tankard" became a very melodic album. The opener "Grave New Wold" is a very catchy track with some Metallica cross-references but it's the distracting "Poshor Golovar" that marked a low-point. This album was the end of an era, showcasing a band that was in a state of transition. The huge successes in the 80's pushed Tankard right into the spotlight and the years that followed helped the band to evolve. The guys got mature without losing the fun factor in life and music. Now it was time for something new, a new chapter in a new context.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Grave New World
  2. Minds on the Moon
  3. The Story of Mr. Cruel
  4. Close Encounter
  5. Poshor Golovar
  6. Mess in the West
  7. Atomic Twilight
  8. Fuck Christmas
  9. Positive
  10. Hope?
  11. Liebesspieler
  12. Pogo in Togo
  13. Hurra, hurra, die Schule Brennt
  14. Herr D.
  15. Sternenhimmel
  16. König von Deutschland
  17. Elke
  18. Skandal im Sperrbezirk
  19. Billiger Slogan
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CD review CAVALERA Conspiracy "Psychosis"

Veröffentlicht am 5. Dezember 2017 von Markus W. in Cavalera Conspiracy, News, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Groove Metal, Napalm Records, CD Review, Psychosis

CD review CAVALERA Conspiracy "Psychosis"

(8/10) End of November the Cavalera brothers kicked-off a European tour. This time the guys didn’t hit the road as the Cavalera Conspiracy. The tour is done as Max & Iggor Cavalera with the main purpose of celebrating the 20th anniversary of a milestone in metal – Sepultura’s “Roots”.

What’s interesting though is the fact that in parallel the two brothers also release a new Cavalera Conspiracy album. Normally you could expect some touring activities connected to a new album, but not this time. I haven’t seen the most recent setlist and I guess that at least the one or the other new songs will find a spot on the setlist.

Besides all this guessing, let’s have a look into “Psychosis”. It’s album number four of Cavalera Conspiracy and it became an interesting one. The best album for me is the debut and also the newest release will not change this. It doesn’t mean that “Psychosis” is a bad record and also the fourth album is full of excellent groove metal anthems, especially in the first half. It just can’t reach the great “Inflikted”.

The start into the longplayer couldn’t be more brutal than what you get to hear with “Insane”. It’s a merciless thrash beast that feels like a smash into right into the face. The brutal “Terror Tactics” follows, a song that easily keeps the high level set by the opener; a fact that also goes for the grooving anthem “Impalement Execution”.  Extreme metal could sound much better.

Towards halftime the album includes a shift, starting with “Crom”. Still building on the trademarks of Cavalera Conspiracy, the tunes includes a first industrial touch, something that gets even more into the forefront with ”Hellfire”. I felt a bit reminded of Ministry when I heard this tune the first time. Adding these variations to “Psychosis” is a good move since it breaks a standard pattern. On the other hand it also adds a bit of a scattered picture to the totality.

After such a musical detour the band returns to the fast and furious with “Judas Pariah”. This high-speed track starts a metal storm and it’s a grooving section in the second half that increases additional excitement. What comes next is more of a distraction. The title track all of a sudden unveils an atmospheric sound. The instrumental comes unexpected and is hard to place in the context of the album. However, it is a moment to recover from the massive metal attack that hit the listener with the previous songs. The final chapter is entitled “Excruciating” and brings back the known. Brutal vocals, screaming guitars and a pounding rhythm section closes album number four.

“Psychosis” stands in the tradition of the earlier releases of the two brothers. It might not become a classic and it comprises some surprises, but Cavalera Conspiracy still represents merciless thrash metal that can lead to severe neck problems due to intense headbanging.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Insane
  2. Terror Tactics
  3. Impalement Execution
  4. Spectral War
  5. Hellfire
  6. Crom
  7. Hellfire
  8. Judas Pariah
  9. Psychosis
  10. Excruciating

 

Label: Napalm Records

Genre: Groove Metal / Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: November 17th, 2017

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CD review IRON SAVIOR "Reforged - Riding on Fire"

Veröffentlicht am 26. November 2017 von Markus W. in Iron Savior, Reforged - Riding on Fire, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, News, CD Review, AFM Records, Piet Sielck

CD review IRON SAVIOR "Reforged - Riding on Fire"

(8/10) Iron Savior belongs to the premier league of German heavy metal. Even though the guys never reached a similar popularity as their Hamburg-colleagues of Helloween it is Piet Sielck who never gave up. This effort and passion was rewarded by fans all over the world, leading to ten powerful metal records and an end is fortunately not in sight.

After having published the latest studio album, “Titancraft”, in 2016 it’s a kind of a  "Best of..” release that ats as a closer for 2017. Sielck and band re-recorded 19 of their best tracks, including classics from the debut like “Iron Savior” and “Brave New World”. Iron Savior focused on the earlier releases and instead of taking the old material for remastering the band took another road. The quartet re-recorded these songs which gives them a more modernised expression. The re-recording was i mainly due to legal reasons and turned into an excellent summery of Iron Saviors creative work up to 2004 when the “Battering Ram” record saw the light of day.

“Reforged – Riding on Fire” is a powerful metal album that shows the beauty of this genre. It combines to old-school vibe with a contemporary production, leading to classics that fit perfectly into the here and now. “Reforged – Riding on Fire” stands for nostalgia meeting the ‘brave new world’.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

CD 1:

  1. Riding on Fire
  2. Battering Ram
  3. Brave New World
  4. Prisoner of the Void
  5. Titans of Our Time
  6. Eye to Eye
  7. For the World
  8. Mindfeeder
  9. Watcher of the Sky
  10. Mind over Matter

CD 2:

  1. Warrior
  2. Iron Savior
  3. Tales of the Bold
  4. No Heroes
  5. Break the Curse
  6. Condition Red
  7. Protector
  8. I’ve been to Hell
  9. Atlantis Falling

 

Label: AFM Records

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: December 8th, 2017

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Live review HELLOWEEN, 'Pumpkins United', 013, Tilburg, 20.11.2017

Veröffentlicht am 21. November 2017 von Markus W. in Helloween, Pumpkins United, Michael Kiske, Kai Hansen, 013, Tilburg, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Keeper of the Seven Keys, Live, Live Review, Tour

Live review HELLOWEEN, 'Pumpkins United', 013, Tilburg, 20.11.2017
Helloween, 'Pumpkins United', 013, Tilburg, 20.11.2017

2017 is coming closer to an end, a year that had many highlights with one announcement that was sticking out - the Pumpkins United tour. Actually the first news came out in 2016 with things getting more concrete in spring this year. Helloween's 'Pumpkins United' tour feels like a dream that became true. Instead of performing some shows in an 'old-school setup', Helloween decided to go for a slightly different approach. 'Pumpkins United' includes all the current band members with the addition of no less than Michael Kiske and Kai Hansen. Even Ingo Schwichtenberg, who passes away in 1995 far too early, was and is part of this tour. The band honours the drummer with a drum solo via the backdrop screen, a solo he does together with Dani Löble. You can't interpret the word 'united' much better than this.

As a part of the world tour the band had a stop in The Netherlands on November 20th. It was the 013 in Tilburg that hosted a fantastic three hour show, featuring finest heavy metal. Helloween bridged in a perfect fashion old and new; not only when it comes to the line-up. The focus was, how could it be different, on the two parts of the 'Keeper of the Seven Keys" album. Five songs each turned the venue into a madhouse.

It was the Robbie Williams smash hit "Let me Entertain You" that acted as an intro to an unforgettable night of which "Halloween" was the starter, followed by "Dr. Stein" and "I'm Alive". These songs are classics and pure energizers.

Next to the great songs, the excellent musicians and the very well-done sound it was the stage scenery that completed a perfect metal show. As mentioned already earlier, it was a big screen that acted as a backdrop. Helloween used it to make Ingo Schwichtenberg part of this three hours metal journey. Next to this highlight of the night, one out of many, it has been short intermissions with Seth and Doc that have been placed after every second song. These nice and amusing breaks were the icing on the cake. Each of the short clips included a twinkle in the eye, stating the humour Helloween stand for.

Being grown up with the 'Keeper'-albums it felt like a journey back in time. Listening to the brilliant medley "Starlight/Ride the Sky/Judas" (from the "Walls of Jericho" release) and the epic "Keepers of the Seven Keys" was a delight for fans and metalheads. Of course time didn't stand still and we all got older. However, the magic survived and after all the decades that passed it's still a pleasure to listen to these classics in metal.

An exciting thing with this line-up is the fact that Helloween can benefit of three guitarists, providing a lot of riff-power and an extremely powerful sound. Next to the three axemen it's Andi Deris and Michael Kiske that performed more than well. It's the rougher voice of Deris that feels like an excellent counterpart to Kiske's high pitch moments, all climaxing when both have been on stage together, performing as a duet. It never felt like the one being better than the other or the both competing. It was more a completion of Helloween's sound. Still I must say that I was impressed how good Kiske's voice is after all these years. This man was and is one of the most influential singers in heavy metal - or how he stated towards the end of the show: "I lost my hair, but I didn't lost my voice". And he's so damn right - with both.

Time was flying that night and even the best things come to an end. The Grand Finale that night included two more classics. "Future World" and "I Want Out" have been excessively celebrated. The ending of a show couldn't have been better than with these two Helloween-hits.

Initiating 'Pumpkins United' was an outstanding idea. This set-up is fun for everybody. The band seemed to enjoy every single minute and also fans finally got what they were asking for such a long time - Helloween from then and now, all in one package. A night to remember and, at least when it comes to me, the by far best show in 2017.

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CD review ANNIHILATOR "For the Demented"

Veröffentlicht am 2. November 2017 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Jeff Waters, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review, Neverland Music

CD review ANNIHILATOR "For the Demented"

(9/10) Jeff Waters and Annihilator are a constant factor in metal since many years. I still can remember the moment when the band's debut blew me away in 1989. The power and the punch that came with "Alice in Hell" was enormous and it's not a big surprise that some songs are still part of today setlist. 

Annihilator's current success is very much based on the willpower of the bandleader. Jeff Waters is Annihilator and it’s his way of interpreting metal music that can't be put into a standard box that easily. The band is often seen as a thrash- or speed metal group, but this one-dimensional view is too limited for describing the band's sound in the right way. Waters and his gang have, without any doubt, a lot of furious thrash references embedded in their sound. However, the Canadian powerhouse has a lot of traditional metal included in their songs and records as well, something that helps to diversify by adding uniqueness to their music. Based on that, as well as due to Waters passionate guitar sound, you can recognize Annihilator immediately.

In their 29th year of existing the quartet comes with a new longplayer - "For the Demented". The record features ten new metal anthems that cover again the full width of what we're used to from the Canadian guitar wizard. As with the predecessors also the new longplayer combines in good fashion aggressive riffs, a powerful beat and some melodies that make each of the songs to a delight. 

Using all thee ingredients allows the band to vary their sound, also reflecting the lyrics. "For the Demented" isn't a concept album even though it still connects to an overarching theme. The lyrics are very much about the human mind and everything that's connected to it - from brilliance to insanity. Jeff Waters managed to get this entire feel into each of the tunes on the album, also pretty much led by his excellent guitar play.  

Things start with a Maiden-like riff before „Twisted Lobotomy“ turns into a high-speed Annihilator song that doesn’t take any prisoners. This beginning is a metal blast that’ followed by the hammering „One to Kill“, a song spiced-up with furious leads and a merciless beat.

Next to these raging anthems there are the calmer notes as well, showing the earlier mentioned width of sounds. „Pieces of You“ is an awesome power ballad that perfectly fits into the context of „For the Demented“. 

A song that could have been on „Alice in Hell“ too is entitled „Phantom Asylum“. Breaks and twists are very present with a constant interaction of a fast and moderate tempo, also including an awesome middle section. Jeff Waters’ creativity doesn’t seem to have any limitations, leading to these excellently executed metal anthems that found a spot on „For the Demented“’s tracklist. 

What else to expect from the new longplayer? „The Way“ is a tune you should have heard. It’s a different ballgame compared to the rest. It’s a spot-on song with a dirty rock’n’roll vibe, followed by „Dark“ which is a gloomy and atmospheric kind of interlude before the savage closer „Not All There“ ends a great new Annihilator longplayer.

"For the Demented" is Annihilator's 16th studio record and it comes with a quality that makes it comparable with the latest releases as well as with the debut. The new longplayer presents the band as a strong and powerful band that found its sound and evolves it on a constant base. "For the Demented" is excellent metal that will be positively received by fans and metalheads all over the place. 

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Twisted Lobotomy
  2. One to Kill
  3. For the Demented
  4. Pieces of You
  5. The Demon You Know
  6. Phantom Asylum
  7. Altering the Alter
  8. The Way
  9. Dark
  10. Not All There

 

Label: Neverland Music

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: November 3rd, 2017

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