Sodom - Decision DayAs you get older, reminiscing becomes part of everyday life. Especially those pushing thirty, forty, fifty years old. Times were simpler in the old days and, while we’re wiser now, there’s a sense of envy for those days of ignorance. In 2016, AMG Industries, Inc. gives Sodom‘s thirty-year-old self an opportunity to look back at baby pictures. A few weeks ago we got an YMIO on Obsessed by Cruelty and now we get 2016’s Decision Day. This would complete the circle of life if Sodom had actually come full circle. But, to be a circle, the beginning must meet the end seamlessly; fusing the past with the present in an endless loop. Once sealed, creation no longer occurs and this ring forever exists for others to admire. Because Sodom shows no signs of calling it quits or closing the loop, this hypothetical ring is better imagined as a coil. And 2016 represents another curl in that coil—turning, twisting, and growing into eternity. One day the leading end of this coil will meet its fate like the head of a serpent under a jagged rock but, for now, the decision to push forward is made.

Of course, this “decision day” has less to do with the fate of Sodom and more to do with that fateful day in 1944. In true Sodom fashion, the band delivers another emotional journey into man’s bloody past. With an emotion personified by the Slayer-esque riffs and a heartbreaking chorus—the title track coming off similarly to Epitome of Torture‘s “Into the Skies.” But, like “Agent Orange” and “M-16,” Decision Day also has plenty of bruisers to counter the disc’s melodic numbers. Within these crushing tracks, you’ll find hate and anger spewing forth from every member of the band. That spit, that fire, that chaos further magnified by Joe Petagno’s (Motörhead) outstanding cover-art. It may not be the best Sodom release in the last thirty years, but at least it’s a consistent package.

Unfortunately, the weak front (“In Retribution”) and weak rear end (“Refused to Die”) of this package are hardly capable of keeping the contents from spilling out. Thankfully, most of the contents are well packed, keeping them together even after the tape fails. “In Retribution” comes out firing on all cylinders, but has some serious flaws when compared to stellar Sodom openers like “Agent Orange,” “Among the Weirdcong,” and “In War and Pieces.” The riffs are solid, but the songwriting is typical and the vocals are uninspired. Follow-up “Rolling Thunder,” on the other hand, is what the opener should have been. A growing intro, a monstrous thrashy riff, a memorable chorus, and even an acoustic build midway make this a true highlight and something that could have punched its way out of the album like “In War and Pieces” did for its namesake album.

Sodom 2016

Though nothing quite touches “Rolling Thunder” when it comes to balls-out riffage, there are other ditties on Decision Day that hit the sweet spot. “Caligula,” “Vaginal Born Evil,” “Blood Lions,” and “Sacred Warpath” are just such examples. The Julius Caesar-themed “Caligula” uses bass leads to propel itself and Witchery riffage to spread its plague. And “Vaginal Born Evil” depends on its heaviness and fist-pumping chorus to real you in. But it’s “Blood Lions” and “Sacred Warpath” that kick serious ass. The former combines more Swedish trash with the American kind (Testament, to be more specific) while the latter unleashes heavy doses of Immortal on its listener. Immortal-inspired riffs and soloing on a Sodom album may sound odd, but it works.

For all the good there is on Decision Day, the opener, the closer, the slow-paced “Strange Lost World,” and the machine-gunned “Belligerence” just don’t work. “Strange Lost World” and “Refused to Die,” in particular, mix it up with mid-paced heaviness and crawling vocals, but they kill the album’s momentum. A momentum that, unfortunately, breaks down too many times. Because of this, I find myself hopping around between “Rolling Thunder,” “Decision Day,” “Blood Lions,” and “Who Is God?” rather than committing to the entirety of Decision Day. But, for those that disliked Epitome of Torture, this new release ought to erase some of that bitter taste from your mouth. Decision Day may not be Sodom‘s best, but after thirty years on the playing field, it’s still impressive to see the band continue to deliver consist material, album after album.


Rating: 2.5/5.0
DR: 6 | Format Reviewed: 128 kbps mp3
Label: Steamhammer Records
Websites: sodomized.info | facebook.com/sodomized
Releases Worldwide: August 26th, 2016

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  • Blueberry Balls

    This is sort of a snooze. Now, that new Obituary track? That shit is solid as a percocet induced turd!

    • Here’s Johnny

      You think this is snoozy but not that new Obituary track? hmmm

  • Monsterth Goatom

    If German week is almost over at AMG, in terms of future reviews, should we be expecting the Colombian Inquisition?

    • We were recently acquired by Wunderbar Blog Works so it’s basically Oktoberfest every day from here on.

      • Monsterth Goatom

        Exciting. I hope AMG branches out into brewing. How about a nice, sweet, and sticky Jorn Lande Malzbier?

        • Saisons of the North I, II and III

          • Monsterth Goatom

            HaHa, I’d drink that.

          • Dr. A.N. Grier

            Sounds a little weak. But I guess that makes sense.

          • The third is more of a heavy stout.

          • Dr. A.N. Grier

            Ooooo, well then.

          • [not a Dr]

            Whatever.

          • Monsterth Goatom

            Sold in Tall Boy sizes only, because, you know….

          • Dr. A.N. Grier

            Well, shit. That speaks to my inner redneck. I guess I better just give in and order a case…

    • Our chief weapon is riffs… riffs and frog-like vocals. Frog-like vocals and riffs. Our two weapons are…

  • Iain Gleasure

    So am I supposed to take Caligula’s lyrics seriously or is this the kind of fun not super serious song like killed by death?

    And I better not be told that Killed by Death was some clever masterpiece of word craft.
    “If you squeeze my lizard”? Don’t tell me that’s serious

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      Totally up to you, I suppose. I just find it (mostly) fun. If you want my honest opinion.

      • Iain Gleasure

        Alright, it just wasn’t as clear to me as the divide between say Alestorm and Slayer

    • Here’s Johnny

      Did you take Outbreak of Evil literally?

  • André Snyde Lopes

    Great Sodom openers and not even a mention of Body Parts? That song fucking rips.

    I like Sodom too much to not listen to this. Hell, I even liked Epitome of Torture!

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      Sorry!!! That is a great song.

      You’ll like this just fine then.

      • André Snyde Lopes

        It’s Sodom, so where do you even begin… Their discography is one of the most consistent among thrash.

        Sure, they’ve lost steam lately but they have so many classics from Persecution Mania all the way up to In War and Pieces.

        • Dr. A.N. Grier

          You’re a good soul. I agree. I had to be honest about the review, but I’m a sniveling fanboy for this band.

    • Carlos Marrickvillian

      They’re a top 10 metal band for me. I’ll get this and enjoy it regardless too. Nothing wrong with epitome of torture!

  • Oscar Albretsen

    Thrash isn’t my thing, but Sodom has been a top metal band in Germany for 30 years now!

    • “Thrash isn’t my thing.”

      I don’t believe you. :-)!

      • Oscar Albretsen

        Well, I don’t dislike it per se, just have trouble telling it apart most of the time…

        • You wot m8?

          Did you listen to last years excellent Trials release? I’ve become much more receptive to the genre after bearing witness to that thrashterpiece.

          • Oscar Albretsen

            Yeah, bought it based on this site’s recommendation and I loved it so much I bought their 2013 release “In the Shadows of Swords” too. Maybe I should do some more thrashing. I saw that Sodom released a best of comp about 15 years ago (“10 black years”). A double CD for only $10 on Amazon. You talked me into it – I’m gonna order it.

    • Here’s Johnny

      Metal aint your thing either then.

      • Oscar Albretsen

        Thanks, dad!

    • TheNihilist

      New Sodom album? And I have not listen yet anything of his 2000s stuff. The same with a lot of classic thrash bands. Now thrash is the new trendy genre?

  • Carlos Marrickvillian

    The expressions “weak front” and “weak rear end” have no place, NO PLACE!! in a Sodom album review.
    I think what you meant to say was “on these numbers Sodom aggressively advanced to the rear”

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      My mistake. I stand corrected.

    • [not a Dr]

      With that band name, they can’t afford to have a weak rear end.

  • Manuel

    Es reicht langsam mal mit deutschen Reviews! Schreibt mal wieder was über gute Musik!

  • Alex

    2.5 Why such a low score for an Album that’s pretty consistent?

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      Compared to other albums in the catalog, this is just average.

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    Julius Caesar-themed “Caligula”? I thought “Caligula” was Caligula-themed. Isn’t it about, you know… Caligula?

  • How is there time to review this album when there is a new Devin Townsend album to review?!?!?!?!?!?!?! :)

  • Jason

    Caligula sounds cool, and I’ll probably give this album a shot, but is “aristocrated” even a word?

    • [not a Dr]

      It is now.

      • Jason

        i guess I better add it to my vocabulary then!

  • Bas

    Man.. Thats some deep poetry.. Kind’of a contrast with Sodom lyrics and imagery ;-) love it though :-) I will check out the new track later, but Sodom is always fun (like old Venom and current Darkthrone)!!!

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      I get sappy with Sodom.

  • Here’s Johnny

    In Retribution is a fuckin awesome tune..what you on about?

  • kmal666

    i dont get how the last anthrax and megadeth albums were given a 4 but this a 2.5. apart from kreator, sodom has been the best of the old thrash bands in the 2000s. and in retribution kicks ass idk what youee talking about.

  • Tofu muncher

    Am ordering this because it’s Sodom. Hah!

  • jersey devil

    2.5!! More like 4.5. This album totally rocks.