German Thrash

Exmortus – Ride Forth Review

Exmortus – Ride Forth Review

“California’s own technical thrash metallers, are a band who does everything I love in metal. They write fast songs, packed with frantic energy and rarely pushing the 5 minute mark. Their guitar work is tight, melodic, and classically influenced. Ride Forth, which drops on January 8th from Prosthetic Records, is an album that goes from zero to 90 in a split second and never drops in intensity as it pounds through nine tracks of palm-muted, staccato licks, arpeggios galore, and non-stop double-kick ass kicking (all while doing it for the Horde!).” Well, that sounds promising. But everyone knows that things are never this simple with Angry Metal Guy.

Accept – Blood of Nations Review

Accept – Blood of Nations Review

And “THEY’RE BACK!! The teutonic terrors responsible for such classic metal albums as Breaker, Restless and Wild, Balls to the Wall have reformed to deliver one humdinger of a comeback ass whipping and one of the best metal albums of 2010 in the process. Blood of Nations is the first slab of new Accept material since 1996’s Predator and to say they are back with a vengeance is quite an understatement indeed. Yes, it’s sad but true, original and uber distinctive frontman Udo Dirkschneider is not onboard for this reunion crusade, but fear not, Accept manages quite nicely without his unique services and no one is more surprised than yours truly about that one.

Blind Guardian – At the Edge of Time Review

Blind Guardian – At the Edge of Time Review

Blind Guardian is easily one of the most unique bands that modern metal has ever encountered. I really do think that they are one of the most original acts to ever come out of any scene, sub-genre or crevace within the greater history of metal. Combining bay area thrash influence with a German power/thrash legacy and sprinkling liberally with Queen, this German act has been at the forefront of power metal and progressive metal since Imaginations from the Other Side (for sure, and probably even before that). Few bands in metal command the kind of insane loyalty from their fanbase and few bands ever deserve that kind of loyalty, frankly. Even for me, personally, Blind Guardian was one of the bands that really got me exploring modern power metal. I picked up Nightfall in Middle-Earth and my life was forever changed. That record still ranks in my top 10 of all time, easily.

Fatal Embrace – The Empires of Inhumanity Review

Fatal Embrace – The Empires of Inhumanity Review

Trends often start off with a good idea or at least a respectable inspiration. However, through imitation and copying, that original idea becomes a trend and the trend gets boring, overdone and ultimately becomes a joke. The retro 80’s power metal trend is in full bloom and many would say the 80’s retro thrash movement has been overdone for years already. As someone who grew up in the 80’s metal era, I may possess more tolerance for this whole “retro” thing since it does this old heart good to hear a quality metal album that truly captures the sound, energy and spirit of a time long gone. Therefore, my review of The Empires of Inhumanity, the new release by German thrashers Fatal Embrace will be more charitable than what it would have received from other angry metal guys. In all fairness, these Teutonic shredders have been around since 1993 so they could rightfully be considered part of the original thrash movement rather than a retro band. Either way though, over four albums Fatal Embrace have demonstrated an unwavering dedication to the 80’s thrash style of Slayer and Sodom while foregoing all modern styles and current trends completely.

Rage – Strings to a Web Review

Rage – Strings to a Web Review

When I was in my big power metal phase, which I guess would’ve probably been around 2000/2001, I stumbled upon a Rage CD in a great used CD store that I used to go into all the time (those were the days). I thought for sure it was going to be great just from looking at it. Turns out… not so much. I don’t recall hating a record more than that one. I thought it was a major pile of shit. I’m pretty sure it was the record XIII, but I can’t be sure as it was sold away a long time ago. Needless to say I wasn’t even a little bit excited when I received this record. I was fully expecting this record to be totally crap.