Exciter

Cemetery Lust – Orgies of Abomination Review

Cemetery Lust – Orgies of Abomination Review

“Oh deary me, Cemetery Lust calls their style of metal “Rape Thrash.” That should tell you all you need to know about these rancid bastards. If it didn’t, this is extremely low rent, low-fi, vaguely blackened crust thrash in the vein of Inferno with copious nods to Whiplash, Autopsy and Sacrofago and it is NOT pretty or PC. At all. If such a thing as a musical cliché warehouse existed, these guys looted the Neanderthal Thrash section of everything that wasn’t nailed down and then nailed down the security guard just to be cvlt.” Well, this sure is a shit show of a listen.

Retro-spective Review: Exciter – Heavy Metal Maniac

Retro-spective Review: Exciter – Heavy Metal Maniac

“Unlike some of the olden chestnuts I’ve tabbed for a retro-spective look back, Exciter is a bit better known and had a more successful run in the gerbil wheel of metal. Still, I feel like they’re one of those bands tumbling off the radar of younger bashers, and that’s a low down, dirty shame! Along with Anvil, Exciter was one of Canada’s earliest metal exports and, like Anvil, they played a part in the birth of the speed/thrash genres.” Steel Druhm takes us for a nostalgia-filled look back at the power and fury of Canada’s contribution to thrash, Exciter. For those aboot to rock, we salute you.

Toxic Holocaust – Chemistry of Consciousness Review

Toxic Holocaust – Chemistry of Consciousness Review

“Well slap my ass and call me Skippy, the premier name in super-mega, old school, retro, throwback thrash (rethrash for short) is back to teach another post-grad lesson in violence. For those not in the know, that means a new album from Joel Grind’s Toxic Holocaust. Yes folks, things don’t get more painfully stuck in the 80s than the speed churned out by Mr. Grind and if there was ever a man born too late, it’s him. You see, Joel was meant to exist during that original wave of thrash, releasing revolutionary new music to shock the world alongside the likes of Slayer and Exodus. Alas, the Fates turned a mean skein and he was cast forward to this cruel future, where all his best thrashing and bashing is considered tired, recycled and irrelevant by many. Tis quite the shame too, since the man has a true gift for penning genuine 80s thrash and his stuff always has an aura of authenticity that’s lacking in most rethrash.” When I say rethrash, you say Grind!! That was fun, right? But is this album fun? Steel Druhm, a veteran of the rethrash wars, will chime in.

Mortillery – Origin of Extinction Review

Mortillery – Origin of Extinction Review

“In the sea of mediocre re-thrash that was 2012, the unheralded debut by Canadian upstarts Mortillery was one of the few life rafts of quality. Murder, Death, Kill was tongue-in-cheek fun and had all the flavor of the second wave of ’80s thrash while incorporating just enough traditional metal and punk elements to keep things interesting. You could feel the youthful exuberance and hunger in the band’s music and they greatly benefited from the exception vocals of Cara McCutchen and the axe slinging acumen of Alex Scott and Alex Guitierrez.” Steel Druhm happily trotted out the skull tank of rethrash for 2012s Mortillery debut, and now they’re back with a follow-up! Will that tank start up again after sitting all year?

Goatwhore – Blood for the Master

Goatwhore – Blood for the Master

Holy shite, this is a feisty and fiery one! One of the most successful “project” bands in recent memory, Goatwhore has come roaring back, filled with piss, bile and cayenne peppers on album five, Blood for the Master. This is nasty, blackened death/thrash from the most stagnant bayou of the Big Easy and it’s the musical equivalent of a gator attack.

Hammers of Misfortune – 17th Street Review

Hammers of Misfortune – 17th Street Review

Few obscure, under-ground bands find the level of respect and reverence that San Francisco’s Hammers of Misfortune has. These avaunt-garde weirdos have been doing things their way since 2001 and slowly building appreciation and acclaim along the way. Deftly defying genre tags and easy (lazy) categorization by reviewers like myself, they’ve churned out a uniquely progressive amalgam of NWOBHM, folk, doom and ’70s rock. So unusual is their sound, the only truly comparable band is sister/brother act Slough Feg, with which they’ve swapped influences and members over the years. It’s a pretty safe bet if you like the Feg, you’ll dig what the Hammers are cooking too. Of the two, the Hammers were and are the weirder, more experimental outfit and under the leadership of guitarist/vocalist John Cobbett (ex-Slough Feg, ex-Ludicra), they’ve traveled some strange roads but always packed truckloads of melody and quirky charm. After an overly long wait since 2008’s Fields/Church of Broken Glass, we’re finally treated to their fifth album 17th Street and its a reassuring blast of sonic strangeness, musical eccentricity and refreshing innovation. Although not crushingly heavy or shockingly aggressive, its plenty metal, hugely melodic, catchy and most importantly, original! If that doesn’t sound good to you, go read my diatribe about black metal.

Lake of Tears – Illwill Review

Lake of Tears – Illwill Review

In the Whack-A-Mole game that is genre pigeonholing, Lake of Tears pop up all over the board, defying you to anticipate their next move. These Swedes have been around a very long time and have always defied easy answers as to what style they actually play. Generally described as gothic metal, they’ve wandered between psychedelic doom, goth-rock, quasi-thrash and pseudo-death over the years. Each album had its own unique flavor and approach while always keeping the distinctive LoT sound. Here on Illwill, their eighth album, they keep the guessing game alive and deliver a strange mix of styles but it all hangs together somehow and works well. With parallels to Paradise Lost, Cemetary, Charon and Type O Negative to name a few, they run all over the place but its always dark in tone and plenty melodic.

Exciter – Death Machine Review

Exciter – Death Machine Review

Stand UP for EXCITER!! Sorry, had to be done. Anywho, Exciter is a band with some serious metal history under their bullet belts. These Canadian metal troopers were there at the birth of thrash metal in the early 80s. In fact, their debut, Heavy Metal Maniacs could be considered the vanguard of said movement since it came out months before Metallica’s and Slayer’s debuts and Germany’s Destruction always cited that album as their inspiration for thrashing like maniacs. Subsequent albums like Violence and Force and Long Live the Loud were also hailed as Angry Metal Masterpieces of the 80s and I was a big fanboy. Sadly, good things never last and Exciter hit some rocky times on later platters and eventually disbanded, rebanded and disbanded yet again, releasing uneven material throughout. However, in 2008 they returned with a new line up (guitarist John Ricci being the only original member) and released the impressive Thrash Speed Burn and now the same line up returns to kick even more ass with Death Machine.