Album Review – Reanimator / Commotion (2022)

This unrelenting Canadian Thrash N’ Roll beast returns to action after seven years with their strongest effort to date, offering us all an overdose of heaviness, rage and rebelliousness.

Since the creation of the band in 2005 in the beautiful city of Montreal by Patrick Martin and Maxime Cormier, the unrelenting Thrash N’ Roll beast Reanimator dug an important place in the Quebec metal scene, offering incendiary Thrash Metal dotted with old school and more contemporary elements, kicking some asses wherever they go. Now in 2022 the band currently comprised of Patrick Martin on vocals, Philippe Lemire and Joël Racine on the guitars, Frédérik Bizier on bass and Francis Labelle on drums strikes again with their third full-length opus, entitled Commotion, the follow-up to their excellent 2015 album Horns Up. Recorded, engineered, mixed and mastered by Jef Fortin at Badass Studio, produced by Carlos Ponte and Dany Soucy at Bam&Co-Heavy, and displaying a sick artwork by the band’s own bassist Frédérik Bizier, Commotion will certainly please all diehard fans of thrashing masters the likes of Exodus, Megadeth and Municipal Waste, bringing to our ears an overdose of heaviness, rage and rebelliousness with a vibrant Québécois twist.

The strident guitars by Philipe and Joël ignite the title-track Commotion, exploding into ass-kicking Thrash Metal to the demented screams by Patrick while sounding very classy and violent at the same time, also presenting some electrifying guitar solos. The Ditch is another song perfect for slamming into the mosh pit, with the metallic bass by Frédérik walking hand in hand with the rhythmic beats by Francis in a nonstop thrashing extravaganza for lovers of the genre; whereas instead of burning the witch, it’s time to be Burnt By The Witch, drinking form the same fountain as Bay Area monsters such as Exodus and Anthrax. Moreover, simply bang your head nonstop to the razor-edged riffs by Philippe and Joël. Then putting the pedal to the metal the band offers the infernal Terry Fire, a play word with “terrifier” as you might have noticed, where Patrick sounds utterly enraged on vocals accompanied by the massive bass punches by Frédérik; and L’Appel Du Vide (or “the call of the void” from French) is a great song entirely sung in French with Patrick being nicely supported by his bandmates’ backing vocals, sounding frantic, dirty and visceral as expected.

Necronomicunt carries a beautiful name for another explosion of old school Thrash Metal by Reanimator where the band’s guitar duo is on fire from start to finish, slashing our ears mercilessly while Francis dictates the pace with his unstoppable drums; and grab a cold beer and head into the circle pit to the sound of Anti-Sobriety, offering us all more of their thrilling riffage, bestial drums and deranged vocals. After such high level of insanity, the band slows things down a bit and brings forward Wretched Affliction, presenting some interesting breaks and variations while Patrick keeps roaring like a beast (despite being a bit below the rest of the album). Back to a more direct, venomous sonority it’s time for the crushing Heads Or Tails, with Philippe and Joël once again stealing the spotlight with their refined riffs and solos; and lastly, let’s bang our heads and raise our horns together with such talented Canadian squad in Out For Justice, with Francis hammering his drums in great fashion while the roaring by Patrick sounds more insane than ever.

If you have what it takes to face this Canadian raging bull of Thrash Metal, you can enjoy Commotion in full on Spotify, and of course purchase the album by clicking HERE or from Boiteamusique.ca. Don’t forget to also check what those metallers are up to on Facebook and on Instagram, and to subscribe to their YouTube channel for more of their inebriate, thrashing music. As aforementioned, Horns Up was already an amazing effort by Reanimator, but the evolution in their music from then to Commotion is beyond awesome, therefore placing them among the best metal bands of the current Canadian scene. And may the heaviness of the Thrash Metal blasted by Reanimator keep hammering us all for many years to come, always fierce and dauntless like the “abominautors” they are.

Best moments of the album: The Ditch, Terry Fire and Necronomicunt.

Worst moments of the album: Wretched Affliction.

Released in 2022 Bam&Co-Heavy

Track listing
1. Commotion 5:36
2. The Ditch 3:26
3. Burnt By The Witch 4:49
4. Terry Fire 3:32
5. L’Appel Du Vide 4:05
6. Necronomicunt 3:22
7. Anti-Sobriety 5:14
8. Wretched Affliction 3:58
9. Heads Or Tails 3:20
10. Out For Justice 4:56

Band members
Patrick Martin – vocals
Philippe Lemire – guitars
Joël Racine – guitars
Frédérik Bizier – bass, backing vocals
Francis Labelle – drums

Album Review – Proll Guns / Horseflesh BBQ (2016)

Groovy riffs, inebriate growls and a humongous amount of bloody horse meat. This is what you’ll find in this entertaining Western Thrash N’ Roll album heartily crafted by three talented cowboys from Austria.

Rating5

Proll Guns - Horseflesh BBQ CoverartworkWho could imagine that the lovely city of Salzburg, the birthplace of the legendary Mozart in Austria, would also be the hometown of three villainous buckaroos who, despite have nothing to do with the state of Texas (the undisputed land of cowboys in the United States), are capable of producing high-octane Western Thrash N’ Roll? Singing about essential themes for any real man such as women, drinking and barbeque, here comes the dynamic power trio Proll Guns, pointing their sonic guns directly to our faces. YEE-HAW!

This libertine Thrash Metal posse was formed back in 2013, when they released their debut full-length album entitled And the Western Blood Runs, mixed and mastered by Danish producer Tue Madsen (who also worked with renowned bands like Ektomorf and Sick Of It All). Mounting their metallic horses once again, armed with their rowdy instruments and totally soaked up in whisky, they are ready to rock your town with their second album, the sonorous Horseflesh BBQ, a solid and fun fusion of traditional Thrash Metal with the dirty and drunken music from the Wild West. In addition, if you have the pleasure to see them playing live you’ll also be treated to their gorgeous “saloon girls”, Miss Candy Rose and Miss Sherly Colt.

Just as if a bloody western movie is about to start, the instrumental intro Texas Banjo Massacre sets the tone for the title-track Horseflesh BBQ to come kicking everyone in the head with its blend of Thrash and Sludge Metal. The inebriate growls by lead singer and bassist Evil Ed not only sound very thrashy, but also at the same time displaying a huge Rock N’ Roll influence, and needless to say how “carnivore” his embodiment of the song’s lyrics are. Then we have the darker and heavier anthem From Texas To Hell, a good song to enjoy while drinking a bottle of Jack Daniel’s where drummer Cra-“Y”-Maker will put you to bang your head nonstop. I wonder how Candy Rose and Sherly Colt would dance to this electrifying tune, but that’s something we can only witness if we go check the band kicking ass live.

0002Do you want some devilish Blues Metal in your life? Well, in Bloodgun Blues guitarist The Burner “scorches” our ears with his fiery riffs while the level of alcohol in Evil Ed’s blood just keeps rising; whereas Fucking Troublemaker brings forward a bad-tempered sonority with The Burner leading this excellent Rock N’ Roll anthem. Moreover, all the elements from the music by Volbeat found in the music, together with the intoxicating punch of Chrome Division, turn this into one of the top moments of the album in my opinion. And Reno Gang is yet another anthem tailored for bikers and heavy drinkers, slightly more melodic than the other tunes thanks to the crispier riffs and solos by The Burner, maintaining the alcohol content of the album way above 100 proof.

Lookin’ Out my Backdoor, a short and sweet Thrash N’ Roll chant, will generate some “friendly” circle pits during their gigs, and when the banjo hits the music things get even more fun; followed by the longest of all tracks, entitled The Revolver, a brutal Rock N’ Roll song where the screams and growls by the “cowboy from hell” Evil Ed enhance the song’s ferocity, with highlights to the nice work done on guitars and drums as well. Their western sounding keeps reverberating in the thrilling Execution, a more violent version of Hard Rock where The Burner offers some nice guitar effects and Cra-“Y”-Maker keeps kicking ass on drums. Also, its rhythm is what we can call the perfect soundtrack for a “drunk badass Rock N’ Roll party”, which translates into awesomeness. Lastly, Southern Slavery, the acoustic tune that aims at concluding the album in a pensive way, goes on for too long and doesn’t really provide anything fresh to the album, or in other words, it’s the only song that doesn’t make sense to be in Horseflesh BBQ in the end.

To sum up, Horseflesh BBQ is a highly recommended choice for fans of groovy riffs, inebriate growls and a humongous amount of bloody horse meat, and if you see yourself as one of those western metallers go check the Proll Guns’ Facebook page and YouTube channel to know more about their music. You can purchase the album at different locations such as the band’s BandCamp page, at the Grooves Inc. webstore, on iTunes or on Amazon, among others. You can either show your support and appreciation for these talented cowboys from Austria, or I believe Proll Guns will have to challenge you for a pistol (or drinking) duel to introduce you to the world of good old Thrash N’ Roll.

Best moments of the album: From Texas To Hell, Fucking Troublemaker and Execution.

Worst moments of the album: Southern Slavery.

Released in 2016 NRT-Records

Track listing
1. Texas Banjo Massacre 2:12
2. Horseflesh BBQ 4:35
3. From Texas To Hell 5:40
4. Bloodgun Blues 5:08
5. Fucking Troublemaker 3:43
6. Reno Gang 3:59
7. Lookin’ Out My Backdoor 2:09
8. The Revolver 7:35
9. Execution 4:16
10. Southern Slavery 3:18

Band members
Evil Ed – lead vocals, bass guitar
The Burner – vocals, guitar
Cra-“Y”-Maker – drums

Saloon girls
Miss Candy Rose
Miss Sherly Colt

Album Review – Reanimator / Horns Up (2015)

Put your horns up and slam into the pit with one of the best and most entertaining Canadian Thrash Metal bands of all time.

zcoverWhat would happen if a hybrid of Anthrax and Testament was born inside a frantic circle pit during a Toxic Holocaust concert, and from that day on this deranged metallic creature had Exodus as its mentor to teach it a fuckin’ lesson in violence? That, my headbanging friends, is the most suitable depiction of Canadian Thrash N’ Roll band Reanimator and their brand new album, the badass mosh pit-generator Horns Up, a flammable parade of vintage Thrash Metal that will leave you completely disoriented so intense and fun it is. In other words, it’s like trying to take the bull by the horns, but having your ass kicked instead and feeling completely satisfied with that.

Since the creation of the band in Montreal, Canada in 2005, Reanimator dug an important place in the Quebec scene, offering an incendiary feast of old school Thrash Metal seasoned with modern elements. After some lineup changes and after releasing a demo, a couple of EP’s and their first full-length album entitled Ignorance Is No Excuse (2009), it was about time for our society to be smashed one more time with the thunderous music by these talented Québécois metallers. The only question I have in mind is if the band was named after the 1985 cult movie Re-Animator, which in case you don’t know it I suggest you go watch it right now. As this classic film is a gory and hilarious variation on the Frankenstein story, it makes sense for the band to use its name due to their undeniable ability of resuscitating that Thrash Metal from the 80’s we all love so much.

Arising from the hellish realms of Thrash Metal, the opening track Electric Circle Pit will throw you into an electric circle pit of awesomeness due to its Anthrax-inspired riffs, creating a cool and energetic vibe where the harsh and powerful vocals by Patrick Martin will get into your head in a very good way. And while some people wait to be caught in a mosh, others simply rush for it like what happens in Rush For The Mosh, an old school Thrash Metal anthem with a Hardcore/Punk Rock atitude, sounding like many classics from the 80’s. Moreover, drummer Francis Labelle doesn’t let the party slow down with his beats, while guitarists Ludovic Bastien and Joel Racine are two unstoppable machine guns of riffs and solos.

ReanimatorHeaderThe next track, Tempted By Deviance, is perfect for that most traditional form of circle pit, like the one fans “worship” during the unparalleled classic “Toxic Waltz” by Exodus. The whole band is kicking fuckin’ ass, with highlights to the vibrant bass lines by Fred Bizier and to the excellent chemistry between Patrick’s lead vocals and the backing vocals. To put it simply, if they don’t add this song to their setlist, we riot.  Anyway, Thieves Of Society presents to the listener a modernized version of Thrash Metal from the Bay Area, in special its metallic riffs and rhythm, with the guitar solos halfway through it being like a journey back to the golden age of Thrash Metal. Then it’s time to slam into the pit with the nonstop monster known as The Abominautor: this is one of those songs where you go crazy slamming, screaming and drinking together with the band, yet another mandatory tune to their live performances. In addition, its guitars and bass lines are beyond tough, beautifully complemented by its amusing lyrics (“Born and raised in outer space / Came down to earth to kill posers / Decontaminating the human race / Ain’t got no pity for those losers”).

and it’s not over yet, motherfuckers, as Reanimator keep dilacerating our souls with The Mosh Master, a Thrash Metal onslaught where the heavy artillery imposed by Francis behind his drum set and the Rob Dukes-like hardcore vocals by Patrick will hit you in the head like a fuming panzer; followed by Still Sick, a song where their passion for heavy music gets even clearer when you see there’s no sign of slowing down at all, and I can imagine the level of devastation its basic but solid as hell instrumental is capable of causing live. Sounding like a (superb) tribute to old school Anthrax, Off With Their Heads is the type of song that would put a huge smile on Scott Ian’s face, mainly due to its sing-along lyrics, catchy riffs and fist-pumping chorus, before Mock A Mockingbird, the most Rock N’ Roll of all tracks, closes this excellent album. The bass guitar by Fred sounds a lot more vibrant, and we have to admit its last part gets pretty interesting with the hints of progressiveness and feeling provided by all musicians.

If you want to go head to head with this raging thrashing bull, go check their official Facebook page, their awesome videos on their YouTube channel, and buy Horns Up at their Big Cartel or BandCamp pages. What are you waiting for, you piece of “thrash”? Put your horns up and slam into the pit to the music by Reanimator, undoubtedly one of the best and most entertaining Thrash Metal acts from the Canadian scene.

Best moments of the album: Electric Circle Pit, Tempted By Deviance, The Abominautor and The Mosh Master.

Worst moments of the album: Mock A Mockingbird.

Released in 2015 Independent

Track listing
1. Electric Circle Pit 4:16
2. Rush For The Mosh 2:45
3. Tempted By Deviance 4:56
4. Thieves Of Society 4:36
5. The Abominautor 3:24
6. The Mosh Master 2:48
7. Still Sick 4:27
8. Off With Their Heads 3:31
9. Mock A Mockingbird 4:38

Band members
Patrick Martin – vocals
Ludovic Bastien – guitar
Joel Racine – guitar
Fred Bizier – bass
Francis Labelle – drums