Megadeth

Emerald – Restless Souls Review

Emerald – Restless Souls Review

“Emerald is a time capsule. The two years since our last meeting grayed the shit out of me, but their Swiss cheese popped out just as chipper and evergreen as I remember. I suppose I should appreciate knowing what to expect. 24 years on and 8 albums in, Emerald found their niche and niched the hell out of it. They’re the anti-power power band, the least dense of the heavy metals, sitting too squarely in the center of the palate to love or loathe. Vim without vigor, vinegar without piss, a good script but a poor adaptation. You know the drill—or do you?” Broken gems.

War Curse – Eradication Review

War Curse – Eradication Review

“Now, don’t get me wrong, being the child of the thrash era, I love when a song turns on end and a chugging lick crescendos into a neck-snapping attack. But, I also miss the days when a band could write a thrash classic that wasn’t waiting around for that mid-song savagery. War Curse also remember those good ol’ days. That’s why they gave us Eradication.” War Curse (and Pepperidge Farms remember).

Interview with John Kevill of Warbringer

Interview with John Kevill of Warbringer

“I tested my mettle (and my liver) on the famed 70,000 Tons of Metal this month and somehow convinced real metal PR folks that I was a real metal journalist. This may or may not have something to do with them thinking I was the Angry Metal Guy, despite my insistence otherwise. As fortune would have it, John Kevill, vocalist and founding member of thrash metal savants Warbringer (and a personal favorite since he was cool as hell to me in a venue bathroom in 2009 (wait, that sounds off (or does it?))), was willing to sit down for a bit. In true Warbringer fashion, John went right at it regarding his thoughts on metal journalism, context, and thrash metal writ large and was as thoughtful, forward, and unapologetic as his music.” Starting wars.

Chainbreaker – Lethal Desire Review

Chainbreaker – Lethal Desire Review

Chainbreaker. It’s a name that conjures images of freedom being won, justice being attained, and dragons being mothered, but it only takes a cursory listen to the lyrics on Lethal Desire to realize that this is a band whose aspirations are not nearly so lofty. Comprised of former members of Toxic Holocaust and Cauldron, Toronto’s Chainbreaker specializes in speedy thrash anthems dedicated to hell, killing, drugs, and what the Bible refers to as fornication, and sometimes all of these at one time.” Chained to the oldies.

Hellnite – Midnight Terrors Review

Hellnite – Midnight Terrors Review

“During their halcyon years Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax loomed large over the thrash landscape, basking in success and spawning a fanbase so large it defied a horizon. But there existed a tier below the A and B-listers, bands like Allegiance, Heathen and Xentrix who eked out a modest existence built on solid albums supported by a coterie of eager followers. This is not a vein you’d expect a modern thrash band to mine for inspiration, yet that is exactly where Hellnite have chosen to strike their pickaxe with their debut album, Midnight Terrors.” Mine the medium.

Inferno – Basado en Hechos Reales Review

Inferno – Basado en Hechos Reales Review

“Let me congratulate you. If you’re reading this, it means you’ve managed to survive “The Great Thrash Drought of 2018.” Thrash is one of my favorite genres in both its single malt and blended-with-other-genre forms, so it was rough having only one album of that style amongst my favorites of last year. There’s just something about the combination of riffs and attitude that makes well-performed thrash untouchable in my book. I’ve been tempted to give in to a sense of hopelessness when it comes to modern day thrash, but rather than relent to this urge, I’ve decided to opt for immersion therapy.” No speed kills.

Mortal Scepter – Where Light Suffocates Review

Mortal Scepter – Where Light Suffocates Review

“My serious pursuits see me swimming in the olde. Philosophy’s greatest treasures are centuries and millennia old. One area of Ontarian contract law is essentially governed by a case concerning seafaring during the Napoleonic Wars. Romantically, well, I’ve gone grave robbing instead of cradle robbing, my affections being towards a lovely woman a few months my senior. It seems only fitting that French death-thrashers Mortal Scepter caught my eye.” Born too late.

Them – Manor of the Se7en Gables [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

Them – Manor of the Se7en Gables [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

“I have fond memories of poring over classic spooky stories like Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado” or “The Tell-Tale Heart” at my grandmother’s house and being repulsed and fascinated with the characters, settings, and actions. I got hooked and read Poe’s short stories over and over. Metal is too gore-obsessed to reliably deliver the classic spooks, save for King Diamond… but he hasn’t put anything out since 2007. Who will deliver good old-fashioned spooky stories through the medium of metal?!” BOO(urns)!

Septagon – Apocalyptic Rhymes Review

Septagon – Apocalyptic Rhymes Review

“When a band drops a successful debut, the weight off their shoulders must be akin to cracking the top level of a pro sport. A million and one obstacles overcome, plus proving to the world that your shit doesn’t totally stink? Must feel nice. Not that I have firsthand experience—producing these bad boys is more a nice can sesh than a cold, rainy night in Stoke. But like writing, music needs to have consistency. Reviewing their 2016 debut, Jean-Luc Ricard suggested that Septagon might have a modern classic in them, but Deadhead Syndicate wasn’t it. Compared to Apocalyptic Rhymes, Deadhead Syndicate is Rust in Peace.” Thrash pile.

Degrave – Degrave Review

Degrave – Degrave Review

“As Eldritch Elitist pointed out in his recent review of Antipeewee‘s Infected by Evil, thrash in 2018 often takes the form of exercise, rather than expression, as bands scramble — and fail — to recapture the magic of the genre’s ’80s heyday. As far as I’m concerned, thrash was over even before Metallica jumped the shark and became a hard rock band; Megadeth‘s Rust in Peace effectively obviated any attempt to further the genre (and art itself if you trust The Onion) back in 1990, and the thrash of the present day for the most part either ignores or emulates the record. But that doesn’t mean emulation can’t still be fun and Degrave are well aware of that fact.” Thrash to the future.