Archive for December 2016

Toxic Waltz – ‘Declassified’   5 comments

Abduction – WTF? An obscure film script dialogue intro’s this, but luckily, it’s soon followed by some pleasantly heavy, thrudding riffs, drum hits and angry vocals, verging on growly, in places, but staying just the right side of thrashy.  Oh, that was an abrupt end, just as I was getting into it.  Never mind, the whole thing has a jungle sound to it, that makes me curious about the next track.  And are there bongos in there, somewhere?  I’ll let you work it out.

Thrash Metal Dictatorship – Clear heavy ethos immediate here and an obvious thrash direction.  Some anthemic stuff, pace variations and a very competent fluidity to the movement between them.  Liking that riff wizardry midway through and the quickening pace towards the close.  Something about it makes me yearn for Metallica.

Beyond The Wall Of Sleep – Nice opening cymbal hit, followed by a very agreeable roar.  Good rhythmic momentum.  It could just perhaps do with a touch more melody, but the riffs compensate (especially 3/4 of the way in).  An even more abrupt end.  A bit too abrupt, I feel.  It would have benefited from a little more time, to show its’ wares.

Island Of Death – Another cymbal intro, with a slight feedback section, and rapidly getting into the mood, with plenty of fast-paced riffage, rapid fire drumming and a distinctly ‘Tallicaesque mid-section, utilising the time well.  A bit of anthemic vocal stuff and again, they maintain the rhythm well.  Echoes of building towards a Hetfieldesque closing evil laugh, but it doesn’t quite get there.  Still, the enthusiasm’s inherent and its a good collective effort, overall.

Politician – Oh a nice new downscaled riff and evenly spaced drum hit intro.  An effective change and maintaining plenty of vocal aggression.  Some well-placed rapidly delivered drum hits, creating a battleground firing range impression.  This definitely ends too soon, depriving itself of the chance to show what else it’s capable of.

Octogenarian Violence – Now that’s much better!  Real vibrancy, life and all-out metal attack form to this!  Edging towards black metal, in places, yet still retaining that thrashier/extreme sense.  Quickened pace, heightened vocal power and generally, livelier feel.  Varying the sound, around 3/4 of the way in, slightly, but never deviating too much from the overall aggression and ending with far greater confidence and certainty – those closing riffs say it all.

Srebrenica – Proper full on battle metal intro.  Very much a team effort here, demonstrating a real flair for anthemic choruses.  Great rapid pace, excellent volume and a clever touch on the final drum hit, coming just after the initial ending.  Well constructed and impressively cohesive.

Loudmouth – Great Tallicaesque ‘Battery’ sound).  Strong pace and rhythm once more, conveying the anger and rage well.  This has got to be the shortest track on the album, but at least it packs a lot of power into the time.

Thrashing Like A Maniac – Spot the ‘Whiplash’ reference).  No bad thing, imo.  OK, … an unexpectedly unusual intro, carrying a somewhat gravelly tone to the instrumentals, somehow, at least initially, but that soon fades, as the song gets into its stride.  Curiously, this may reference ‘Whiplash’ in its title, but its construction, although definitely holding some aspects of “Kill Em All”, is far more along the “Master of Puppets” lines.  Again, I have to say that this goes down very well, for me.  Aw, I really did not want that to end!(.

Overall – Well, this has been saved by the latter half of the album, as while the former half may have been adequate, but not necessarily much to write home about, something happened mid-way through the album and it picked up considerably, from ‘Octogenarian Violence’ onwards.  These last four tracks have sealed it for me, increasing the star rating from the initially intended 5/6, to an improved 7.  The final few tracks are where the true potential lies, imho, so perhaps this is a case in which the track order would benefit from being rearranged, to reflect the genuine ability within the album.

7/10 *******

For fans of Metallica, Anthrax, Slayer, Testament, Megadeth, Municipal Waste, extreme metal.


Posted December 28, 2016 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Fabulous Desaster – ‘Hang ‘Em High’   5 comments

A thrash metal band from Bonn, Germany, Fabulous Desaster were founded in June 2005, as Stay Hungry, playing a combo of original material and covers.  They changed to Fabulous Desaster in 2010, and are now focused on playing thrash metal which doesn’t conform to stereotypes.  Influenced by: Exodus, Heathen, Razor, RAVEN, Demolition Hammer, Bruce Lee, Artillery, “Kill ‘Em All”, Flotsam and Jetsam, “Whiplash”, Show No Mercy, Van Halen, Beer, etc.

Their initial EP, ‘When The Silence’s So Loud’, was launched in 2010.  In 2013, line-up changes led to a new energy and in summer 2014, the 5 track demo, ‘Chaos.  Torture.  Terror.  Violence’.  was recorded.  More line-up changes took place in the latter half of that year, including Andi from Hornado joining on bass.  In 2016, the full-length debut album, ‘Hang ‘Em High’, was released independently, on 19th November.  Produced, mixed and mastered by Armin Rave, at Soundsight Studio, Hennef. Cover artwork by Mario E.  Lopez. M.

Death Is Loud – Hard as hell intro there; impacting, angry and truly thrash.  Fast-paced, blazing riffs, fiery vocals, with a well-placed anthemic streak, blitzing drums and a generally aggressive, lively feel.  Thrash is still very much alive and well and on fire, with metal heat, if this track’s anything to go by.  A brilliant start.

Faster Than Light – Nicely placed cymbal hit opening this, setting the trend for the precision rhythm following throughout.  Crazed, furious and filled with thrashy energy.  This is one of those tracks in which you can hear the bands’ reason for being.  It’s just alive with such high, frenetic energy, that it’ll lift you with one listen.  Confident, fresh and real.

Warsaw – Great unhesitant drum roll intro, opening the way ahead, for the sheer thrash metal extravaganza that is Warsaw.  Your ear drums aren’t gonna know what’s hit them.  Little but true metal blood can prepare you for this insanity of sound.

Thrash Bang Wallop – Wow, that’s an amazing contrast, opening misleadingly, with a single acoustic note, then instantly and seamlessly moving into a cracklingly vibrant thrash party.  Fans of Metallica’s ‘Kill ‘Em All’ will love this, as will Pantera’s ‘Hostile’ fans, as you’ll hear both in here.  It truly is a cleverly synchronised thrash track, verging on a medley, playing out old school influences, while making it their own modern, but not quite modern, masterpiece.  Throwing in some gentler riffs, between the effervescent metal madness and ending decisively on a single beat, in an AC/DCesque style, with a thrash twist.

Midnight Fist Fight – Oh yeah, now that’s a proper ‘Kill ‘Em All’ spirit right there.  ‘Whiplash’ fans, eat your heart out.  I tell you what, though.  Even the mighty James Hetfield couldn’t nail those power screams, even if he is still the master of the fabulously performed evil laugh in there.  Magnificent riffs, superb quality audio, top-level production values and just loving those final frantic vocals and even more evil, yet hilarious laugh.  Really?  There’s nothing not to love).

Wellness In Hell – Blazingly powerful intro that’ll take you right into the centre of the mosh pit with it.  Stunning pace to those vocals, a bit more of the anthemic slant and an overall fiery energy to the whole thing.  Again, that old school influence is audible, whilst it’s clear that they’ve very much gone their own way with this, creating their own monster and it really truly works.  Still, Testament fans will enjoy the hark back to ‘The Haunting’ , in here.  Exodus’s ‘War Is My Shepherd’ is also an audibly similar sound.  Faultless performance.  Especially the way he nails those screams.

R.I.P. (Rest In Power).  An admirable sentiment.  Another crazed, energy fuelled drum roll intro.  Still, those strikingly powerful vocals are brilliantly maintained.  Killer riffs.  Such an intense vibe and that glorious scream around the mid-section is just to die for.  Again, you just have to love it.  Memorable, uplifting, powerful as fuck and there’s that loveably narcissistic laugh again, just before the end).  It wins every time.

Thrash Metal Symphony – Great, highly skilled, fluidly timed percussive intro, flying straight into the metallic buzz, with astounding riffs, a noticeable effort to inject real venom into the vocals and a complete thrash take-over, flooding your being with the welcome sensation of metal, pouring through your veins, seeping into every pore and infiltrating your very being.  Such awesomely fitting lyrics too.  Metal incarnate.

Toxic Nuclear War – Fuck, that shouted intro just startled me out of my reverie.  This is simply a thrash battlecry to end them all.  Holding such a force field of powerful energy, the thrash just permeates your skin, through osmosis.  One to leave your metal senses reeling, you could say it’s a standout track; I’d call it a thrash attack.

Customized – The final race into thrash town territory, it’s a veritable cloud burst of thrash from the Gods of Metal.  Truly gorgeous melodies and riffs in there and the timing’s divine.  Slayer fans will be in heaven here, cos if ever there was a gold standard tribute to ‘Seasons In The Abyss’, it’s this.  Injecting more anthemic stuff, more speed, more power, more everything, till it ends on a magnificent scream and your energy’s probably done now, but what better way to expend your vital energies than on engrossing yourself in what can safely be called a benchmark of true thrash metal?

Overall – Holding all the true hallmarks of thrash metal, at its passionate best, as it’s meant to be, your life will never be complete without a copy of ‘Hang Em High’.  Add it to the top of your top 10 must have albums now.  Nothing more to say.

10/10 **********

For fans of Metallica, Exodus, Slayer, Pantera, Anthrax, Megadeth and every high-level thrash metal band imaginable.

Thanks to Fabulous Desaster, I now have the ‘beautiful disaster’ lyrics from Slash, Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators’ World On Fire’ track on an endless loop in my head.  It’s all their fault.


Posted December 7, 2016 by jennytate in Uncategorized