Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Enforcer: Death By Fire (2013)

I was pretty excited for this one.  I loved Enforcer's 2010 album Diamonds.  The band struck the right chord with their take on NWOBHM crossed with speed metal.  Not only that, their songs were catchy as hell.  The album was a ton of fun, and even my wife liked the album quite a bit, which is pretty damn rare.

The first time I heard this one though I was slightly disappointed.  All of the elements from the previous album were present, but there was no track like "Running in Menace", which was the standout song to me on this one.  That is not to say that the songs were not good, there just was not that one track that made the entire album.  However, with repeated listens, the album grew on me.  I still do not think that I like it quite as well as Enforcer's last album, but it is no longer a disappointment.

The sound on this album is a little bit different.  The NWOBHM sound is still very much present, but instead of focusing on the poppier groups as they did on the last album, this time around they went for a heavier Diamond Head-meets-Blitzkrieg sound.  "Satan" even sounds like Metallica pre-Kill 'Em All.

The elements that made Enforcer's last album are still there.  The band combines an impressive melodic sensibility with some biting riffs and impressive vocal work.  The songs are catchy, though not as much as on their previous album.  I do not think this album will gain the band new fans, it is not quite as good as Diamonds after all, but it is a reasonably impressive follow-up.

Monday, July 29, 2013

FMA Reviews: Toxic Holocaust: From the Ashes of Nuclear Destruction (2013)

Originally reviewed here.
Hmmm. I am not quite sure why I am reviewing this. I did not realize it at first until listening to it for the first time that this is a compilation rather than a full-length release. I realized it finally when I kept thinking to myself "I know I have heard this song before". I guess it helps to pay attention occasionally.

Anyway, I am a big fan of Toxic Holocaust so even though this is a compilation, I enjoyed listening to it. This is a collection of tracks off of EPs and splits that the band has done over the years. Toxic Holocaust has a lot of music out there and this puts together some of the rarer tracks for easier consumption. That is what a good compilation does after all.

Toxic Holocaust is never going to break down any barriers to new musical ideas not previously heard. Joel Grind is perfectly content to play music bearing sonic similarity to the early days of blackened thrash, paying homage to groups like Sodom, Hellhammer, Venom, and Bathory in their earliest incarnations. Back when playing ability took a backseat to playing raw and vile metal infused with punk. That too is what Toxic Holocaust does.

This is raw thrash metal without a care in the world. The band, mostly Joel Grind, is not the most musically-talented group in the world but it always sounds like they have an absolute blast ripping through short, sharp shards of metal. This is not for people who want their music to really say something. It just rocks, plain and simple.

I am not going to pretend that everyone should check this out. This is a compilation and is really just there for the completists and huge Toxic Holocaust fans

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Coming Back Very Soon...

I had a busy few months but it looks like I am finally coming out of it.  I had a trial today and one two weeks ago.  So things have lightened a little.  I will be getting back into the swing of things next week, of course I will be on vacation soon after that.