Album Review – Hyperia / Silhouettes of Horror (2022)

This unrelenting Melodic Thrash Metal squad from Canada is back with a fast and furious new album, exploring parapsychology, night terror hallucinations and inhumane government experiments.

Formerly of Calgary, Alberta, and now residing in Vancouver, British Columbia, the unrelenting Canadian Melodic Thrash Metal squad Hyperia is unleashing upon humanity a fast, melodic and heavy-hitting thrasher entitled Silhouettes of Horror, the follow-up to their 2020 critically acclaimed album Insanitorium. Mixed by Colin Ryley at Singularity Sound Studios, mastered by Mika Jussila at Finnvox Studios, and displaying a beyond classic artwork by Belarusian illustrator Andrei Bouzikov, Silhouettes of Horror explores parapsychology, night terror hallucinations and inhumane government experiments, all embraced by the thrashing music blasted by Marlee Ryley on vocals, Colin Ryley and David Kupisz on the guitars, Scott DeGruyter on bass and session musician Gord Alexander on drums. “The album is mostly about government experiments, greed, and conspiracies, but also about sleep disorders because I have suffered from them since childhood and because of that it was an easy theme to write about,” commented Marlee about the band’s newborn beast.

A cryptic voice ignites the frantic opening track Hypnagogia, with Colin and David slashing their stringed axes accompanied by the thrashing beats by Gord, all of course spiced up by the demented roars by Marlee, and putting the pedal to the metal the band fires the insane Thrash Metal feast Intoxication Therapy, living up to the legacy of bands the likes of Anthrax and Toxic Holocaust with Marlee stealing the spotlight with her she-wolf screams. They keep hammering their instruments mercilessly in Experiment 77, another melodic and sick Thrash Metal aria where Colin is on fire with his guitar solos, whereas a more rhythmic start led by the rumbling bass by Scott and the fierce beats by Gord kick off the mid-tempo, darkened tune Severed, with Marlee’s growling being supported by infernal backing vocals. Following such obscure song, the band continues to invest into a NWOBHM-inspired sonority in Prisoner Of The Mind, with the guitar duel by Colin and David sounding awesome throughout the entire song.

Marlee and her henchmen keep blasting their fusion of insanity, rage and metal music in Terror Serum, a solid display of their Melodic Thrash Metal where Gord does an excellent job dictating the song’s pace with his classic beats, and get ready for a thrashing ride together with Hyperia in the form of Whitecoat, the perfect remedy for a boring day. Put differently, simply slam into the pit to the visceral screams by Marlee and be a happier person, whereas the title-track Silhouettes of Horror brings to our avid ears another round of their devilish riffs supported by the metallic bass by Scott, sounding very melodic and thrilling until the very last second. Operation Midnight is a flawless hybrid of classic Heavy Metal with Bay Area Thrash where Marlee sounds truly possessed on vocals while Colin and David deliver sheer aggression and harmony from their guitars, followed by the last original song from the album, Pleonexia, offering at the same time a more obscure side of Hyperia and their usual sonic devastation, flowing violently to the demonic beats by Gord until the very end. Finally, we’re treated to their cover version for ABBA’s classic Gimme Gimme Gimme (check out the original version HERE), and the band did a fantastic job adding their touch of evil to the music while keeping the song’s core essence intact.

If you believe you have what it takes to face the 50 minutes of the insane thrashing extravaganza crafted by Hyperia in Silhouettes of Horror, you can enjoy the album in its entirety on YouTube and on Spotify, but of course in order to provide those Canadian metallers  with your utmost support you can purchase the album from their own BandCamp page or from Apple Music. In addition, don’t forget to give the band a shout on Facebook and on Instagram, showing your love for such talented band from the Great White North. Do you believe in government experiments and conspiracy theories? Are you a diehard fan of first-class Thrash Metal? If your answer is yes to one or both of these questions, then Hyperia have exactly what’s needed to put a huge smile on your face while you raise your horns to the demented music found in their excellent new album, leaving us all eager for more of their wicked creations in the nearby future.

Best moments of the album: Intoxication Therapy, Experiment 77, Whitecoat and Operation Midnight.

Worst moments of the album: Severed.

Released in 2022 Independent

Track listing
1. Hypnagogia 4:17
2. Intoxication Therapy 4:38
3. Experiment 77 4:28
4. Severed 4:20
5. Prisoner Of The Mind 4:18
6. Terror Serum 4:51
7. Whitecoat 3:31
8. Silhouettes of Horror 3:54
9. Operation Midnight 4:22
10. Pleonexia 6:59
11. Gimme Gimme Gimme (ABBA cover) 4:29

Band members
Marlee Ryley – vocals
Colin Ryley – lead guitar, backing vocals
David Kupisz – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Scott DeGruyter – bass, backing vocals

Guest musician
Gord Alexander – drums (session)

Album Review – Demiricous / III: Chaotic Lethal (2022)

An epic collection of tracks exploring a dark narrative of the barbaric and grotesque, marking the return into the battlefield by an old school Death and Thrash Metal horde from Indianapolis.

Rising from the depths of the abyss in Indianapolis, the state capital and most-populous city of the US state of Indiana, Death/Thrash Metal horde Demiricous is unleashing upon humanity their most monstrous record yet, entitled III: Chaotic Lethal, following an extended hiatus of 15 years since the release of their last album, Two (Poverty). An epic collection of tracks exploring a dark narrative of the barbaric and grotesque, the album presents to the listener a revived and restored sound by Nate Olp on vocals and bass, Ben Parrish and Scott Wilson on the guitars, and Dustin Boltjes on drums, as the band have evolved into their next chapter, delving into heavier instrumentation and sinister moods while releasing a plethora of hard-hitting sounds for the delight of admirers of extreme music.

The gates of the underworld are open wide in the opening tune Unconditional Hate, with Dustin smashing his drums with endless violence while Nate roars manically from start to finish in a lecture in modern-day Thrash Metal; and it’s time to slam into the circle pit to the blazing riffs by Ben and Scott in Terminal Future, living up to the legacy of Bay Area Thrash while its backing vocals provide a spot-on support to the visceral screams by Nate, all spiced up by Ben’s devilish solo. In Smoke Chaser we face nonstop adrenaline and action in the form of Thrash Metal where once again Dustin steals the spotlight with his classic, unstoppable beats, accompanied by the incendiary riffs by his bandmates, whereas The Follow is a hybrid of old school Thrash Metal with Crossover Thrash and Hardcore that will please all fans of speed and violence, with Ben and Scott setting fire to the atmosphere armed with their guitars.

There’s no time to breathe as the quartet keeps hammering our heads with their aggressiveness and rage in Fuck The Fire, perfect for breaking your neck headbanging while growling together with Nate, followed by the title-track Chaotic Lethal, bringing to our avid ears a dark and sinister atmosphere led by the doomed beats by Dustin, and that heaviness and obscurity goes on until the very last second. Then a cryptic intro morphs into the high-octane, demolishing Merciless Slut Cult, a no-shenanigans, in-your-face Thrash Metal onrush spearheaded by the visceral riffage by Ben and Scott, blending the best elements found in the music by Slayer, Anthrax and Suicidal Tendencies; while Choke is another rumbling creation by Demiricous presenting their trademark violence amidst tons of melody and dexterity, with Nate bursting his lungs roaring. And the band generates a somber ambience one last time in Faith Crime, evolving into a nine-minute thrashing behemoth where Dustin shows no mercy for his drums, not to mention how hellish and demented the growling by Nate sounds and feels.

Like a phoenix arising from the ashes, Demiricous are back in action with the fulminating III: Chaotic Lethal, highly recommended for thrash metallers from all over this doomed world who enjoy a balanced fusion of the past and present (and even future) of the genre. Hence, let’s show our support to the guys from Demiricous by following the band on Facebook and on Instagram, by streaming more of their pulverizing music on Spotify, and by purchasing a copy of their newborn beast from their own BandCamp page, as well as from the POST. Recordings’ webstore in CD or LP format, or from Apple Music. “It’s been 15 years since we’ve released a record. We are so unbelievably proud of this one, and this is the Demiricous record we’ve always wanted to make. Prepare yourselves. It’s a fucking monster,” commented the band, who won’t hopefully go into another hiatus in the nearby future, continuing to smash our senses with their Thrash Metal for many years to come.

Best moments of the album: Terminal Future, Merciless Slut Cult and Faith Crime.

Worst moments of the album: Chaotic Lethal.

Released in 2022 POST. Recordings

Track listing
1. Unconditional Hate 5:07
2. Terminal Future 3:50
3. Smoke Chaser 5:10
4. The Follow 4:05
5. Fuck The Fire 4:54
6. Chaotic Lethal 5:57
7. Merciless Slut Cult 3:36
8. Choke 3:59
9. Faith Crime 9:19

Band members
Nate Olp – vocals, bass
Ben Parrish – lead guitars
Scott Wilson – rhythm guitars
Dustin Boltjes – drums

Metal Chick of the Month – Miranda Wolfe

Free the beast within, Miranda!

It has become a tradition here at The Headbanging Moose to kick off a new year with a badass bass player on our Metal Chick of the Month section, and it couldn’t have been any different than that this January 2022 with our metal lady Miranda Wolfe. Born on July 31, 1987 in Edmonton, the capital city of the Canadian province of Alberta, Miranda is not only a fantastic bass player from the Canadian underground scene, but also a talented designer and tattoo artist, and I’m sure you’re going to love her music, her art and her charisma when she’s hammering her bass together with her Thrash Metal band Mortillery. In other words, you better get ready as things are about to get heavy-as-hell to the sound of Miranda’s infernal bass, starting 2022 in style.

It’s simply impossible to pay a tribute to Miranda without talking about Mortillery, as she was one of the founders of the band back in October 2008 in Edmonton together with guitarist Alex Gutierrez and drummer Emily Smits when they decided it was time for their city to have a thrash band that represented the origin of the genre, because although the punk and metal scene had always been strong in Edmonton and there were a few crossover bands, there was nothing specific to that classic 80’s Bay Area Thrash sound at that time. Shortly after, vocalist Cara McCutchen joined the band, and James Guiltner was added as a lead guitarist to finish up what was the original line up. However, the band parted ways with James, replacing him with Alexander Scott, and later in 2013 replacing Alexander with Kent Quinlan. Emily also left the band back in 2010, with Kevin Gaudet being then responsible for the drums. For months the band tried to come up with a name, but every cool name they came up with was taken, and therefore they just made up a word by combining “mortal” and “artillery”.

Playing classic 80’s Thrash Metal in the vein of thrashing beasts Nuclear Assault and singing about topics like hell, death, evil, murder and the apocalypse, the awesome Mortillery, who are by the way on hold for now, released their self-titled debut demo in 2009, their self-titled EP in 2010 (containing the two songs from the 2009 demo plus other songs), and the full-length albums Murder Death Kill, in 2011, Origin of Extinction, in 2013, and more recently Shapeshifter, in 2016, not to mention the band was also featured on the 2016 Metal Hammer compilation Maximum Metal Vol. 218 with the song Radiation Sickness. Not only Miranda played bass in all of the band’s releases to date, but she was also responsible for the booklet artwork for their 2013 album Origin of Extinction, and the layout for their 2016 album Shapeshifter, showcasing another side of our metal lady that will be discussed shortly.

You can have an absolute blast with Miranda and her Mortillery on YouTube by enjoying their awesome videos for the songs Radiation Sickness, Age Of Stone, Torture and F.O.A.D., as well as the live versions for Murder Death Kill and Countless Suicide, and their cover versions for Razor’s Evil Invaders and Anthrax’s all-time classic Madhouse. You’ll certainly notice how metallic, visceral and rumbling the bass lines by Miranda sound in each of those songs, proving she’s much more than “just” a talented bass player, but a true metalhead that nurtures an absolute passion for what she does (also showing a deep passion for her partner, her two cats and dog, and for traveling and touring, by the way). And in case you’re eager for more of the music by Mortillery, you can also find all of their creations on sale and for streaming on BandCamp and on Spotify.

Highly influenced by monsters of metal such as early Metallica, Toxic Holocaust and Judas Priest, our beloved bassist is also huge into Punk Rock and very early Thrash Metal, with bands the likes of Exodus, Exciter, Annahilator, Razor, Broken Bones, Crucifix, GBH, Flotsam & Jetsam, Anthrax and Municipal Waste being a regular part of her playlist. Furthermore, Miranda and Mortillery have already shared the stage with some of their idols such as Death Angel and Anvil, to name a few, with their first show ever being the supporting act to the one and only Toxic Holocaust. As we’re talking about touring and supporting major bands, it’s important to mention that Mortillery use no special effects at all during their live performances, simply because they want their music to be heard for what it is with no distractions. And when asked which bands Miranda and the rest of the band would love to tour with, they mentioned playing alongside Overkill, Anthrax or Helloween would be a dream come true. Moreover, when asked about the metal scene in Edmonton, Miranda and the band mentioned there are lots of really dedicated bands and fans in the city, but the distance to other cities and the frigid temperatures in the winter can be a real barrier to touring, and if you want to check other amazing Canadian bands like Mortillery you should take a listen at Skull Fist, Diemonds, Cauldron, Kobra And The Lotus, Unleash The Archers, Tarantuja, Gatekrashor, Crystal Mess and Untimely Demise, among many, many others.

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In one of her interviews together with Cara, the girls were asked if they have to prove themselves twice as female musicians in a male dominated scene, or if this is not an issue anymore these days. Miranda and Cara simply answered that they don’t need to prove anything to anyone, that they just do what they enjoy and that their sound will always remain the same no matter what. In addition, they mentioned that if you are good at what you do, you should be recognized for that regardless of what sex you are, complementing by saying that they don’t believe that women “need” any special attention just because they are women, and that there was never a lack of recognition for the women that play metal, but just that there’s a lot more of women in the metal scene nowadays. There’s also an awesome panel online called “Women Who Rock” held in 2016 by Napalm Records (which can be seen in full HERE) featuring Fernanda Lira of Nervosa, Tatiana Shmailyuk of Jinjer, and of course Miranda and Cara, covering questions like “What does it mean to you to be a woman in metal?” and “Who’ve inspired you and what got you into metal?”, among other questions, where Miranda mentions Girlschool and Wendy O. Williams, two of the most important names in the history of rock and metal regarding female musicians, as the ones who got her into becoming a musician.

And last but not least, as aforementioned our unstoppable bassist took care of the booklet artwork in Origin of Extinction and the layout in Shapeshifter, and that talent in the arts and design field led her to open her own tattoo studio in 2021, simply named Miranda Wolfe Tattoos, a high detail custom tattooing studio specializing in blackwork, dotwork and traditional, being fully licensed, health board approved and bloodborne pathogens certified. Miranda has been tattooing since 2016 and she has always been a very artistic person who cares a lot about her work and her clients, always putting the most towards each and every piece she does, big or small. Hence, if you want to give Miranda Wolfe Tattoos a try and turn your idea for a tattoo into reality, you can get in touch with her by email, by Facebook or by Instagram, and I’m sure she will provide you with first-class customer service and all the attention you can get from a multi-talented metalhead like her. Who knows, maybe you can finally get that Thrash Metal-inspired tattoo you’ve been dreaming of with a real thrashing tattoo artist like Miranda, right?

Miranda Wolfe Tattoos’ Official Facebook page
Miranda Wolfe Tattoos’ Official Instagram
Mortillery’s Official Facebook page
Mortillery’s Official Instagram
Mortillery’s Official YouTube channel
Mortillery’s Official Twitter

Album Review – 4 Kings / The 2021 EP (2021)

Get ready for 13 minutes of a fast and loud fusion of Thrash Metal, Punk Rock and Hardcore made in Germany.

Playing a fusion of Thrash Metal, Punk Rock and Hardcore as fast and loud as those styles demand since the band’s inception in 2015 in the city of Köln (or Cologne, if you prefer), Germany, the five-piece act known as 4 Kings is back in action in 2021 with a brand new EP, simply titled The 2021 EP. Currently comprised of Seth on vocals, Martin and Jannes on the guitars, Marino on bass, and Marcel on drums, 4 Kings (and yes, I know it doesn’t make a lot of sense for a band of five musicians to be named like that) will smash your cranial skull with the four heavy and visceral tracks from their new EP, inviting us all to slam into the pit and, consequently, to develop that severe neck pain we all love so much after some good headbanging, leaving you absolutely eager for more after the EP’s 13 intense minutes are over.

Martin and Jannes begin slashing their stringed axes in Tantrum, being quickly joined by the raspy roars by Seth and the classic Hardcore beats by Marcel, resulting in an old school and straight to the point tune that kicks things off in style. Then adding hints of Death Metal to their core Thrash Metal sound, the quintet delivers the fulminating Winter’s Back, with Marino’s bass jabs and Marcel’s beats generating a massive atmosphere perfect for the crisp riffs and solos by the band’s guitar duo; whereas Bay Area Thrash riffs ignite the circle pit celebration titled Braindead, where Seth sounds even more enraged and demented on vocals supported by the classy backing vocals by his bandmates. It’s undoubtedly the most dynamic and diverse of all four songs, pointing to an exciting direction for the band. And last but not least, sinister sounds permeate the air in Under my Skin, with Martin and Jannes cutting our skin deep with their razor-edged riffs, sounding less intense than the other songs but absolutely vile and brutal just the way we like it.

If you want to give The 2021 EP a try you can find it in full on Spotify, but in order to properly support the underground you should purchase a copy of it from Amazon, and don’t forget to also give the band a shout on Facebook and on Instagram, and to subscribe to their YouTube channel to stay updated with all of their future releases. As aforementioned, The 2021 EP will offer your metallic ears a very good dosage of Thrash Metal infused with Hardcore and Punk Rock nuances, proving 4 Kings (or maybe I should say those five thrashers from Germany) are back and ready to rock no matter what for years to come in the name of heavy music.

Best moments of the album: Winter’s Back and Braindead.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2021 Independent

Track listing
1. Tantrum 2:32
2. Winter’s Back 3:53
3. Braindead 3:20
4. Under my Skin 3:41

Band members
Seth – vocals
Martin – guitar
Jannes – guitar
Marino – bass
Marcel – drums

Album Review – Exodus / Persona Non Grata (2021)

Don’t be a “persona non grata” in the world of heavy music and get into the circle pit to the sound of the newborn beast by one of the driving forces of Thrash Metal worldwide.

Persona Non Grata, an unacceptable or unwelcome person, is also the name of the brand new Thrash Metal beast by Bay Area titans Exodus, their first studio album since Blood In, Blood Out in 2014 and their second to feature vocalist Steve “Zetro” Souza since he returned to the band that same year. Recorded at drummer Tom Hunting’s three home studios in Lake Almanor, California, mixed by Andy Sneap at Backstage Studios, engineered by Steve Lagudi, displaying an ass-kicking, venomous artwork by Pär Olofsson, and featuring guests Rick Hunolt, who had been an Exodus member on and off since replacing original guitarist Kirk Hammett in 1983, and Zetro’s own sons Nick Souza and Cody Souza on backing vocals, both from Zetro’s band Hatriot, Persona Non Grata is another lesson in violence by the aforementioned Zetro and Tom together with guitarists Gary Holt and Lee Altus and bassist Jack Gibson, and despite the delay in the release of the album due to Gary’s commitments with Slayer until 2019 and Tom’s diagnosis with squamous cell carcinoma of the stomach (and I’m sure Tom will beat the shit out of it), the wait was totally worth it as their new album is undoubtedly one of the best releases in the world of metal in 2021.

Gary and Lee waste no time and begin their axe attack in great fashion in the pulverizing title-track Persona Non Grata, a lecture in savagery by Exodus uniting their early days sound with their heavier and more demonic present, also showcasing a beyond bestial Tom on drums;  and they keep hammering our heads mercilessly in the circle pit-generator R.E.M.F., presenting another awesome guitar job by Gary and Lee supported by the metallic bass by Jack, while Zetro vociferates rabidly just the way we like it. Then an incendiary intro evolves into another Thrash Metal extravaganza titled Slipping into Madness, which will inspire you to slam into the pit in the name of heavy music. It’s very old school without sounding outdated, with Zetro once again being on fire with his raspy roars, whereas in Elitist the band sounds less intense but still violent and acid as usual, with Jack and Tom extracting earthshaking sounds from their respective bass and drums while the band’s guitar duo delivers their trademark sharp solos. Sinister sounds permeate the air in Prescribing Horror, a neck-breaking, vile creation by Exodus where Tom smashes his drums flawlessly, followed by The Beatings Will Continue (Until Morale Improves), a pure, unfiltered Bay Area Thrash hymn which will sound amazing when played live, with Zetro, Gary and Lee being in total sync from start to finish.

Exodus Persona Non Grata Box Set

The Years of Death and Dying is a lot more melodic than its predecessors, offering their trademark unfriendly lyrics (“I’m a force of nature pure and sure / I’ve killed through all of time / When a GALE force wind blows through you / You’ll know that you are mine / I am legend, I’m your end / You’ll wither when I’m near / I’m the years of death and dying / the sum of all your fears”), while in Clickbait the unstoppable Zetro gnarls the song’s austere words manically (“We take the clickbait / Follow as they lead / With every word they captivate / We blindly follow they trail like human sheep / Never awake always asleep”) accompanied by the brutality blasted by Tom on drums. After the short and sweet Southern Rock-inspired instrumental interlude Cosa del Pantano, the band comes crushing us all in Lunatic-Liar-Lord, featuring a sick guitar solo by Rick Hunolt while the band brings to our ears eight minutes of aggression, speed and adrenaline, all spearheaded by the undisputed riffage by the one and only Gary Holt. There’s no sign of slowing down and the quintet keeps delivering sheer electricity and rage in The Fires of Division, another Thrash Metal anthem perfect for hitting the “dance” floor while Zetro continues to fire his unique growls; and closing such dense and demolishing album of vicious thrash we have Antiseed, starting in a dark manner before exploding into a massive, evil creature led by the aggressive vocals by Zetro and the heavy-as-hell riffage by Gary and Lee.

After listening to over one hour of the ass-kicking, first-class, undisputed Thrash Metal blasted by Exodus in Persona Non Grata, we can rest assured thrash is very much alive, and will forever be, positioning not only the album as one of the best metal releases of the year, but also Exodus as one of the true driving forces of today’s Thrash Metal alongside Testament. Hence, don’t forget to follow Zetro, Gary & Co. on Facebook and on Instagram, and to buy or stream Persona Non Grata by clicking HERE, and if I were you I would definitely go for the beyond special boxset edition of the album (which you can purchase HERE or HERE), limited to 2,000 worldwide and including the album on CD and orange/red swirl with black splatter vinyl, a “Jam Camp!” Blu-ray, a 20-page booklet, a slip mat, a wall flag and a patch, all embraced by a custom packaging with 3D-vacuformed album art and clamshell box with die-cut window and gold foil stamping. And if after all that you still decide not to grab your copy of such insane album, I’m sorry but from now on you’re “persona non grata” at The Headbanging Moose.

Best moments of the album: Persona Non Grata, R.E.M.F., The Beatings Will Continue (Until Morale Improves) and Lunatic-Liar-Lord.

Worst moments of the album: The Years of Death and Dying.

Released in 2021 Nuclear Blast

Track listing
1. Persona Non Grata 7:30
2. R.E.M.F. 4:22
3. Slipping into Madness 5:33
4. Elitist 3:58
5. Prescribing Horror 5:09
6. The Beatings Will Continue (Until Morale Improves) 3:01
7. The Years of Death and Dying 5:22
8. Clickbait 4:31
9. Cosa del Pantano 1:13
10. Lunatic-Liar-Lord 7:59
11. The Fires of Division 5:23
12. Antiseed 6:17

Band members
Steve “Zetro” Souza – vocals
Gary Holt – lead and rhythm guitars
Lee Altus – lead and rhythm guitars
Jack Gibson – bass
Tom Hunting – drums, percussion

Guest musicians
Rick Hunolt – lead guitars on “Lunatic-Liar-Lord”, backing vocals
Cody Souza – backing vocals
Nick Souza – backing vocals

Album Review – Terrordome / Straight Outta Smogtown (2021)

The new album by this unrelenting Polish squad will hit you hard right in the head with their fusion of Thrash Metal, Hardcore and Crossover Thrash with beyond acid lyrics.

Recorded, mixed and mastered by Tomasz “ZED” Zalewski at Zed Studio and featuring an old school artwork by Marcin “Biały” Białkowski, Straight Outta Smogtown is the third full-length installment by a Thrash Metal squad formed in 2005 in the city of Kraków, Poland that goes by the in-your-face name of Terrordome, following up on the violence and adrenaline of their 2015 album Machete Justice. Highly recommended for fans of the sickness blasted by renowned acts the likes of Nuclear Assault, Slayer and Cryptic Slaughter, the new album by vocalist and guitarist Uappa Terror and guitarist Paua Siffredi, together with session musicians Simon on bass and Friggi Mad Beats (Chaos Synopsis, Attomica) on drums, will hit you hard right in the head with their fusion of classic Thrash Metal, Hardcore and Crossover Thrash, with an array of guests including Frank Blackfire (Sodom, Assassin) and Manu Joker (Uganga, Sarcofago) bringing even more electricity to the album’s metal thrashing madness.

Featuring an atmospheric guitar solo by guest Konrad “Destroyer” Ramotowski (Untervoid, Hate), the intro Terrorizing the Nation as the Best Way to Thwart Shameful Schemes warms up our bodies and minds for the Exodus and Nuclear Assault-inspired tune Possessed By Blyat, where Friggi Mad Beats crushes his drums mercilessly, being therefore perfect for slamming into the pit right away, whereas Worried Again sounds even heavier and more menacing, with Uappa’s visceral roars adding an extra touch of animosity to the music while Uappa himself and Paua extract pure Thrash Metal from their sick riffage. And their sonic attack has no time to stop, as they keep delivering hatred and madness in Steel on the Road, with their thrashing riffs and blast beats elevating the song’s insanity through the roof, not to mention how demented Uappa sounds on vocals.

The rumbling bass by Simon kicks off the Thrash and Groove Metal feast Plastic Death, where Uappa invests into Tom Araya-like vocals while his bandmates exhale heaviness through their sonic weapons, and it’s impressive how they managed to sound even faster and heavier than before in Your Personal Comfort Versus the Global Disaster, a brutal Thrash Metal assault showcasing razor-edged riffs by Uappa and Paua and the always wicked beats by Friggi Mad Beats. Then featuring guest vocals by Manu Joker and Jairo Vaz (Chaos Synopsis), get ready to be smashed by Terrordome in Desordem e Regresso, a sick display of extreme music and a “tribute” to the political nightmare that haunts Brazil these days; and Friggi Mad Beats hammers his drums in great fashion in the berserk Into the Void, a pulverizing Crossover Thrash extravaganza led by the vicious riffs and solos by the band’s relentless guitar duo. After such demented tune, their thrashing party goes on in the also electrifying Ego-Boost Downfall, drinking from the fountain of Bay Area Thrash and, therefore, offering our ears piercing riffs and thunderous bass jabs nonstop.

Money Kills carries a great title for another solid, straightforward Thrash Metal tune where all band members are on fire from start to finish, with Uappa stealing the spotlight by rabidly roaring the song’s acid words, while Demolition, featuring a slashing guitar solo by guest Frank Blackfire, offers more of their European thrash spearheaded by the machine gun-like beats by Friggi Mad Beats. Put differently, it will work perfectly when played live to an avid moshing crowd, and firing some Gary Holt-like riffs and infernal beats the quartet brings forward another humongous dosage of animosity and rebelliousness in I Don’t Care, where Uappa is once again demented on vocals. Then an atmospheric intro evolves into a headbanging tune titled Conspiracy, where Uappa and Paua invite us all to dance like a monkey into the circle pit, albeit not as intense as its predecessors; whereas an intro taken from the 1968 cult movie Night of the Living Dead, directed by the iconic George A. Romero (R.I.P.), explodes into what’s in my opinion the best song of the album, The Day They Left Their Graves, a lecture in Thrash Metal with Friggi Mad Beats sounding utterly infernal on drums, presenting the perfect combination of old school thrash with tales of the living dead.

You can get caught in the frantic mosh crafted by Terrordome in Straight Outta Smogtown by listening to the full album on YouTube and on Spotify, but of course if you consider yourself a true thrashing trooper you should definitely purchase the album from the band’s own BandCamp page and webstore, from the Selfmadegod Records’ BandCamp page and webstore, from Apple Music or from Discogs. In addition, don’t forget to follow those sick thrashers on Facebook and on Instagram, and to subscribe to their YouTube channel for more of their awesome creations. After all is said and done, Terrordome proved us all with Straight Outta Smogtown that Thrash Metal is more than alive, especially in the underground, solidifying their name in the local and international scene and, of course, proudly carrying the flag of Polish extreme music wherever they go.

Best moments of the album: Worried Again, Steel on the Road, Desordem e Regresso and The Day They Left Their Graves.

Worst moments of the album: Conspiracy.

Released in 2021 Selfmadegod Records

Track listing
1. Terrorizing the Nation as the Best Way to Thwart Shameful Schemes 0:48
2. Possessed By Blyat 2:41
3. Worried Again 3:24
4. Steel on the Road 2:38
5. Plastic Death 3:32
6. Your Personal Comfort Versus the Global Disaster 2:50
7. Desordem e Regresso 2:45
8. Into the Void 2:25
9. Ego-Boost Downfall 2:57
10. Money Kills 3:49
11. Demolition 2:43
12. I Don’t Care 2:49
13. Conspiracy 3:41
14. The Day They Left Their Graves 3:09

Band members
Uappa Terror – vocals, guitars
Paua Siffredi – guitars
Virious – bass*
Rob Sixkiller – drums*

Guest musicians
Simon – bass (session)
Friggi Mad Beats – drums (session)
Konrad “Destroyer” Ramotowski – guitar solo on “Terrorizing the Nation as the Best Way to Thwart Shameful Schemes”
Słoma – additional vocals on “Worried Again”
Kosa – additional vocals on “Worried Again”
Syru – additional vocals on “Worried Again”
Frank Blackfire – guitar solo on “Demolition”
Manu Joker – additional vocals on “Desordem e Regresso”
Jairo Vaz – additional vocals on “Desordem e Regresso”

*Bass and drums recorded respectively by Simon and Friggi Mad Beats

Album Review – Angelus Apatrida / Angelus Apatrida (2021)

Forged in turmoil but full of the hope that only music can inspire, the new album by the Spanish angels of thrash is indeed the pulverizing metal record that the whole world needs right now.

Brought into being in 2000 in Albacete, a city and municipality in the Spanish autonomous community of Castilla–La Mancha, Spain’s leading Thrash Metal institution Angelus Apatrida returns to the battlefield now in 2021 with their seventh full-length opus, self-titled Angelus Apatrida, celebrating 20 years as a band. Forged in turmoil but full of the hope that only music can inspire, the album is the pulverizing metal record that the world needs right now, showcasing all the dexterity of Guillermo Izquierdo on vocals and guitars, David G. Álvarez also on the guitars, José J. Izquierdo on bass and Víctor Valera on drums. Recorded by Juan Angel López at Baboon Records, mixed by Christopher “Zeuss” Harris at Planet Z Studios, and displaying an ass-kicking artwork by Hungarian artist Gyula Havancsák (Hjules Illustration and Design), Angelus Apatrida features ten original songs that sound more determined, versatile and ferocious than ever before, inviting us all to slam into the circle pit to the band’s undisputed thrashing music.

And five seconds is all those Spanish bastards need to kill with a Pantera’s “Fucking Hostile”-inspired hymn entitled Indoctrinate, a brutal thrashing anthem to kick off the album on a high note, penetrating deep inside our minds with their wicked sounds and catchy-as-hell lyrics (“Indoctrinate / through fear then / dominate / Indoctrinate / one true faith / inculcate / Predominate / strong voices will be heard / Intoxicate / snake tongues to / indoctrinate”), whereas in Bleed The Crown the stringed duo Guillermo and David is ruthless with their razor-edged riffs while Víctor keeps hammering his drums nonstop, resulting in another bestial fusion of Thrash and Groove Metal. Then we have The Age Of Disinformation, with Guillermo viciously singing about our addiction to new tech, about the spread of fake news and how we’re forgetting to enjoy reality (“Slaves, dependents, victims of technology / Exposed to a world of lies / Living through the age of disinformation”), while José and Víctor make the earth tremble with the heavy kitchen; followed by Rise Or Fall, another song inspired by the golden years of Pantera with the band’s own Spanish twist where the quartet doesn’t stop blasting sheer violence and heaviness through their sonic weapons of mass destruction, spearheaded by the austere screams by Guillermo. And there’s no sign of slowing down as Angelus Apatrida fire another round of their high-octane, incendiary Thrash Metal in the form of Childhood’s End, showcasing an amazing job done by Guillermo and David with their sick riffs and solos.

In Disposable Liberty we’re treated to a solid instrumental led by the groovy beats and fills by Víctor, albeit not as vibrant nor as dynamic as its predecessors but still presenting tons of good elements like the low-tuned, metallic bass jabs by José, and back to a more frantic and vicious sonority the quartet offers our avid ears the headbanging tune We Stand Alone, perfect for slamming into the circle pit like a maniac while blending Bay Area Thrash with European Thrash and Groove Metal. Following such infernal tune, Víctor sounds like a stone crusher on drums, pulverizing everything and everyone that crosses his path in Through The Glass, while his bandmates extract endless aggressiveness and rage from their respective instruments. And there’s no escape from the thrashing madness blasted by Angelus Apatrida, as they keep smashing their instruments in the classic Empire Of Shame, with Guillermo, David and José being on fire with their intricate and thunderous riffs and bass punches, whereas closing the album they bring forward the menacing, sharp-as-a-knife Into The Well, presenting an awesome sync between Víctor’s wicked beats and their electrifying riffage throughout almost six minutes of first-class, contemporary Thrash Metal for the masses.

In the end, it doesn’t matter if you’re a fan of Thrash Metal or not, you have to admit Angelus Apatrida have outdone themselves in their newborn spawn, providing the heavy community another sensational display of their skills and their passion for heavy music, therefore sending a sound statement to all mankind that those Spanish metallers are far from calling it quits, having the sky as their limit. Hence, don’t forget to give them a shout on Facebook and on Instagram, to subscribe to their YouTube channel for more of their music and videos, to stream all of their albums on Spotify, and of course to purchase their new album by clicking HERE, adding to your personal collection what’s by far one of the most exciting Thrash Metal albums hailing from Europe from the past decade. As already mentioned, this is the type of album our world needs right now, with the Spanish angels of thrash offering us fans a very good reason to slam into the pit and bang our heads like there’s no tomorrow while our rotten society crumbles into pieces.

Best moments of the album: Indoctrinate, Rise Or Fall, We Stand Alone and Empire Of Shame.

Worst moments of the album: Disposable Liberty.

Released in 2021 Century Media Records

Track listing
1. Indoctrinate 5:39
2. Bleed The Crown 4:26
3. The Age Of Disinformation 4:42
4. Rise Or Fall 3:36
5. Childhood’s End 3:49
6. Disposable Liberty 4:21
7. We Stand Alone 4:11
8. Through The Glass 5:41
9. Empire Of Shame 4:17
10. Into The Well 5:47

Band members
Guillermo Izquierdo – vocals, guitars
David G. Álvarez – guitars
José J. Izquierdo – bass
Víctor Valera – drums

Album Review – War Agenda / Propaganda (2020)

Join those Teutonic thrashers in their quest for heavy music to the sound of their sophomore album, bringing to our ears a collection of rebellious anthems inspired by the glory of the 80’s and 90’s.

Ready to kill in the name of old school Bay Area Thrash, a Daisbach and Sinsheim, Germany-based horde formed in 2012 that goes by the straightforward name of War Agenda has just unleashed upon humanity their sophomore album, titled Propaganda, a rebellious ode to 80’s and 90’s thrash in the vein of Exodus, Slayer, Testament and Kreator, among others. Featuring an insurgent artwork by Mal Semmens Art, Propaganda has everything a diehard fan of classic Thrash Metal can ask for, from its austere lyrics to raspy vocals and smashing drums, showcasing all the talent of one of the band’s masterminds Ingo on the guitars together with his loyal henchman Hamdi on drums and newcomers Mostafa Troll on vocals, Raafat on the guitar and Marcel on bass. In other words, simply put on your best mask and join those Teutonic thrashers in their quest for heavy music, slamming into the pit and raising your horns to the sound of their visceral creations.

In the intro Sounds of Oppression we’re treated to serene and melancholic acoustic guitars, but of course darkly oppressive, exploding into the title-track Propaganda, where the metallic bass by Marcel will smash your head while Mostafa begins his Bobby Blitz-inspired vocal attack in an old school Bay Area Thrash extravaganza with the band’s own Teutonic twist, perfect for igniting the album’s endless circle pit vibe. Then blending the Speed Metal of Megadeth with the insanity of the early days of Exodus, Ingo and Raafat slash their stringed axes in great fashion firing ass-kicking riffs and solos nonstop in Plan B, a song that will inspire you to bang your head in the name of thrash, followed by Human Race, an acid “tribute” to our rotten society, with Hamdi pounding his drums accompanied by the strident riffage by the band’s guitar duo, spearheaded by Mostafa’s manic declamation of the song’s austere lyrics. And more of their no shenanigans Thrash Metal comes in the form of United in Hypocrisy, a headbanging tune showcasing crushing beats and strident riffs, recommended for slamming into the pit while enjoying a cold beer; whereas Marcel brings forward obscure bass lines in the bold Silence of Justice, before morphing into another feast of classic thrashing sounds the likes of Obituary, Nuclear Assault and Exodus, presenting Ingo and Raafat’s riffage in total sync with Mostafa’s raspy gnarls.

Heavy-as-hell and menacing from the very first second, the quintet brings forth the violent Apartheid, a lesson in 80’s Thrash Metal where Hamdi goes berserk with his wicked beats and fills from start to finish, and it’s time for total anarchy and chaos with the thunderous Chaos Invasion, blending their trademark Thrash Metal with modern-day Groove Metal thanks to the fulminating sounds blasted by Marcel and Hamdi with their unstoppable bass and drums. Then let’s head into the battlefield together with War Agenda in the frantic War of Nations, with Ingo and Raafat taking the lead with their razor-edged riffs while Mostafa vociferates and roars like a true thrashing beast in an awesome display of German Thrash Metal for fans of Kreator. In Killer Disease, despite its dark and venomous feel, the music is not as inspiring as its predecessors, sounding a bit generic I might say. Mostafa continues to bark rabidly while Hamdi smashes his drums with tons of precision, though, and closing such austere album we have Child of Dreams, showcasing a delicate intro before exploding into their classic thrashing sonority where Ingo and Raafat are on fire with their wicked solos, ending the album in a pensive and rebellious way .

You can enjoy Propaganda in its entirety on YouTube and on Spotify, but of course in order to keep supporting underground Thrash Metal you should purchase the album from the band’s own BandCamp page, from the Great Dane Records’ BandCamp or webstore, from Season of Mist, from Amazon or from Discogs, keeping the band more than inspired to destroy everything that crosses their path with their thrashing music for many years to come. In addition, don’t forget to also follow War Agenda on Facebook, and whenever this never-ending, shitty pandemic is finally over, I’m sure you’ll be the first to know where you can slam into the pit like a true Thrash Metal lover to the music crafted by this talented and ruthless German squad, just the way we all like it in the most rebellious music style in Heavy Metal.

Best moments of the album: Propaganda, Human Race and War of Nations.

Worst moments of the album: Killer Disease.

Released in 2020 Great Dane Records

Track listing
1. Sounds of Oppression 2:10
2. Propaganda 4:03
3. Plan B 4:20
4. Human Race 5:31
5. United in Hypocrisy 3:27
6. Silence of Justice 4:49
7. Apartheid 4:08
8. Chaos Invasion 3:20
9. War of Nations 3:46
10. Killer Disease 4:39
11. Child of Dreams 5:24

Band members
Mostafa Troll – vocals
Ingo – guitars
Raafat – guitars
Marcel – bass
Hamdi – drums

Album Review – Vampiric / Supernatural Tales (2020)

Phoenix, Arizona’s own lone wolf returns with more of his blood-soaked Symphonic Black and Thrash Metal in a tribute to darkness and the supernatural.

Arising from the depths of his lair less than one year after the release of his debut full-length album The Magic of the Night, the Phoenix, Arizona-based one-man army Nik Williams, the mastermind behind Symphonic Black/Thrash Metal entity Vampiric, is back with more of his blood-soaked, dark and captivating music in his brand new opus entitled Supernatural Tales, bringing to our ears more of his fusion of extreme and symphonic sounds while singing about vampires, wolves and other creatures of the night. Not only that, Nik once again did everything by himself, including all music, lyrics, artwork and so on, proving how passionate he is about heavy music and vampirism, and how his undeniable talent allows him to unite those two distinct topics into a collection of dynamic and obscure compositions.

Phantasmagorical synths and a stench of blood permeate the air in the opening track Endless Night, where Nik generates a bold atmosphere with all instruments, also firing both harsh growls and cryptic clean vocals and uniting Black and Thrash Metal in the name of darkness. In Bloodthirst we’re treated to sheer brutality, with Nik barking the song’s vampiric lyrics manically (“Do you hear it? / Does it not sound like the shadows calling your name? / At midnight’s strike, piercing the dark / Calling to you as if in dream / His presence made known / His shadow crawls across the wall”) while the music brings a fusion of Second-Wave Black Metal with classic Bay Area Thrash, all spiced up by its background keys; and blasting a more straightforward and rockin’ sonority, Nik offers us all the dark and dancing tune The Wolves Of Winter, showcasing slashing riffs and massive beats and bass punches, being tailored for admirers of Gothic Rock and Metal from the 80’s and 90’s with a more venomous twist. Then Nik continues to blast his drums and extract sheer malignancy from his guitar, resulting in a hybrid of Blackened Death Metal and Symphonic Black Metal entitled Heart Of Fire, where our lone wolf sings about how fear sometimes controls our lives (“Rise from the fire whose flames burn you not / Become the fire / It matters not the fear that lives inside of your heart / But how you go forth and face that fear / Times of turmoil beget times of peace”).

Melodic guitars ignite the also frantic and obscure The Embrace Of The Vampire, with Nik growling and gnarling while at the same time generating a truly wicked ambience with his Phantom of the Opera-inspired keys, also presenting some elements found in the music by the almighty Cradle Of Filth, whereas an exciting ride through the lands of Rock N’ Roll, Black Metal and symphonic music is condensed into the multi-layered The Darkness Reborn, where Nik does a superb job with all instruments, in special with his demonic riffage and vicious roars. A Descent Into Madness is a visceral, in-your-face Extreme Metal tune where the bass sounds are absolutely metallic and thunderous, making a solid paradox with all the ethereal keys in the background, while Fall From The Sky leans towards the rawer musicality from his 2019 album, also bringing forward a spot-on balance between aggressiveness and melody while the drums sound as Black Metal as they can be. It’s a bit lengthy, though, despite all of its breaks and variations, but nothing to worry about, before the cinematic outro The Dawn Is No More puts a melancholic and at the same time epic conclusion to this bloodthirsty album.

Not only Supernatural Tales represents a healthy and interesting step forward in the career of Nik Williams and his Vampiric, but it’s also a solid statement that Nik is an unstoppable force of the underground, always working on new material and always eager to release original music to fans of that more extreme side of metal, having released so far two excellent albums in less than one year, and I’m not even counting his debut EP Death Tore Through, also released in 2019. Hence, you can show your support to such up-and-coming, hardworking artist by following him on Facebook, by subscribing to his official YouTube channel, and obviously by purchasing Supernatural Tales sooner than you can expect from his own BandCamp page (where you can by the way take a listen at a couple of his new songs already, as well as his previous releases). In a nutshell, in praising darkness and the supernatural with his new album, Nik is also carving his name in the metal underworld, leaving us eager for more of his vampiric tales and extreme sounds until the end of days.

Best moments of the album: Bloodthirst, The Wolves Of Winter and The Darkness Reborn.

Worst moments of the album: Fall From The Sky.

Released in 2020 Independent

Track listing
1. Endless Night 5:28
2. Bloodthirst 2:50
3. The Wolves Of Winter 5:40
4. Heart Of Fire 4:51
5. The Embrace Of The Vampire 5:31
6. The Darkness Reborn 3:36
7. A Descent Into Madness 3:20
8. Fall From The Sky 6:22
9. The Dawn Is No More (Outro) 2:31

Band members
Nik Williams – vocals, all instruments

Album Review – Dead Tree Seeds / Push The Button (2020)

Simply slam into the circle pit like there’s no tomorrow to the sound of the brand new album by these talented thrashing maniacs hailing from France.

Born from the ashes of a Thrash Metal band named Triakanthos in 2009 in Paris, France, an unstoppable thrashing beast known as Dead Tree Seeds is back in action after seven long years with their sophomore full-length album, entitled Push The Button, the follow-up to their 2013 release Seeds of Thrash. Inspired by the biggest names of the scene, from Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer to the most violent fringe of Kreator or Sepultura, as well as the groovy forays the likes of Testament and Pantera, Dead Tree Seeds go straight to the point in Push The Button, paying a vibrant and aggressive tribute to that classic Thrash Metal sound from the 80’s and 90’s while at the same time adding their own French twist to each one of the ten original tracks of the album. Currently comprised of Frank Vortex on vocals, Francois Odonnet and Aurelien Gonzalez on the guitars, Sidi Assila on bass and Alexandre Prudent on drums, Dead Tree Seeds are definitely back on track in their explosive new album, inviting us all to join them into the circle pit to the sound of their American Thrash Metal-fueled creations.

In the instrumental opening track Thrash Tales, Francois and Aurelien begin extracting serene, acoustic sounds form their guitars, gradually enhancing their rage and punch while accompanied by Alexandre’s fierce drums, setting the tone for Fangs Of The White Wolf, an old school Thrash Metal hymn perfect for crushing your skull into the pit, with Frank rabidly vociferating the song’s epic lyrics (“Fear, frost, blizzard in your eyes, welcome to the great white storm / Lost in travel, gone to the North, hailstones like a swarn / You’ve been followed by hungry eyes, the wild is craving for your flesh / Meet the Lord of the frozen wastelands, killer of a million wanderers”), whereas drinking form the same rebellious fountain as Anthrax, Exodus and Overkill, it’s time for the quintet to put the pedal to the metal in Thru God For Vengeance, where the band’s guitar duo fires their trademark shredding and solos while Frank keeps barking and growling like a true thrashing maniac.

No Time To Complain stats in a darker way before morphing into classic Thrash Metal led by Frank’s rabid roars while Sidi keeps smashing his bass mercilessly, maintaining the level of adrenaline in Push The Button extremely high, followed by the title-track Push The Button, a demented thrashing extravaganza where Alexandre sounds brutal and demolishing on drums, therefore providing his bandmates all they need to thrive, in special Frank with his raspy, punk-ish vocals, not to mention the sick guitar solos fired by Francois and Aureliene. Then strident guitar sounds permeate the air in the melodic bridge The Way To Eternity before tribal beats hammer our heads in the headbanging tune Abjection, blending the obscurity from Slayer with the inebriate sounds from the early years of Exodus while also showcasing a great balance between their razor-edged riffage, visceral growls and groovy background sounds.

And Alexandre doesn’t let their wrath and electricity go down with his vicious beats in Enemies Of Rome, where Frank’s deranged screams are effectively supported by the band’s old school backing vocals, all spiced up by their accelerated pace halfway through it for our total delight. Wailing Wall reminds me of both old school and contemporary Testament, which is obviously an amazing feature of the song, focusing on the precise and incendiary riffs by the band’s guitarists while Frank alternates between deeper growls and more desperate screams, paving the band’s path of destruction to the closing tune Shotdead, offering over seven minutes of savagery, rebelliousness and, above all, pure 80’s Thrash Metal spearheaded by Alexandre’s blast beats. Furthermore, their sharp riffs will pierce your ears in great fashion, and despite all breaks and atmospheric passages not sounding bad, they end up taking away some of the song’s ferocity in the end.

As I already mentioned in a few older reviews, if thrashing is your business (and business is good), you can start following Dead Tree Seeds on Facebook to know more about those talented French thrashers, and in order to show them your utmost support and admiration you can purchase a copy of Push The Button from their own BandCamp page, as well as from the Rock Metal Market webstore in regular CD format, in vinyl format, as a special CD + vinyl bundle, or as a very special CD + vinyl + cassette bundle. It might have taken seven years for the seeds of thrash planted by Dead Tree Seeds to finally grow into their newborn spawn Push The Button, but the wait was definitely worth it for all fans of classic Bay Area Thrash, who know have another excellent reason for having a cold beer and slamming into the circle pit just the way we love doing since the beginning of the glorious decade known as the 80’s.

Best moments of the album: Fangs Of The White Wolf, Push The Button and Abjection.

Worst moments of the album: Shotdead.

Released in 2020 M.U.S.I.C. Records

Track listing
1. Thrash Tales (Instrumental) 1:42
2. Fangs Of The White Wolf 3:40
3. Thru God For Vengeance 3:52
4. No Time To Complain 6:27
5. Push The Button 4:12
6. The Way To Eternity (Instrumental) 2:03
7. Abjection 4:34
8. Enemies Of Rome 6:00
9. Wailing Wall 4:53
10. Shotdead 7:29

Band members
Frank Vortex – lead vocals
Francois Odonnet – guitar
Aurelien Gonzalez – guitar
Sidi Assila – bass
Alexandre Prudent – drums