RETCHED – ‘The Overlord Messiah’

RETCHED was born in 1988, from a band originally named AVATAR – though its founder, David DerMinasian felt strongly that the name wasn’t metal enough. The album was initially recorded in their hometown of Fresno, California, at Maximus Media Inc. The band played gigs locally to them, in California and in LA and Hollywood, to a highly supportive fan base. Unfortunately, they disbanded towards the end of that year, following problems with unsupportive management, leading to promotional neglect, placing them in an impossible position. Fast forward almost 30 years later and David DerMinasian has self released the album, through Bandcamp.com. It’s since received 3 record contract offers, out of which, Alone records, in Thessaloniki, Greece, was chosen. They now have a massive online following.

From this story comes RETCHED (pronounced ‘recht’) – a 2-piece thrash metal band, consisting of David DerMinasian (lead rhythm guitar and bass guitar) and David Ezelle (vocals, drums and percussion), with a strong online presence. Their debut album is expected in November 2018.

Black Leather And Me – Snazzy memorable intro, simulating the sound of a stereo needle on vinyl, quickly followed by a classic riff, maintaining impressive momentum, throughout. Soon accompanied by equally old school metal vocals and throwing in some very brief screechy stuff, with some backing harmonies, here and there; the lyrics say it all. It’s just a typical old school thrash track.

Insane – Drumming attack intro, more of a power scream emphasis to the lyrics and tons of riffage. Standard thrash fayre, without much deviation from type or tonal variation, but it’s a fair listen.

Lost In The Night – Here, the drums increase their power and the lyrical volume matches the rise in sound. Generally, a more powerful energy and the screams are well placed, adding greater life and strength – enhancing its enjoyability. Closing on a thunder and rainstorm sound effect, the energy’s lifting here.

Metal Knights – Opening with a military leader commanding a firing squad to take aim and rapidly followed up by more traditional metal stuff, with even more poignant melody. Just too short and ends just as you’re getting into the flow. Stand-out fixture has to be the riffage, though, being so acute, as to be almost physically palpable. Spine chilling, in its own way.

The Pharaoh’s Curse – Introing with a powerful windstorm, emulating that of Dio’s ‘Holy Diver’. Again, it continues in a similar vein to before, with more thrashy sounds and a determined vocal edge. Growing increasingly Egyptian, in sound, in deference to its title, the passion’s audible, as with the enthusiasm.

The Overlord Messiah – Once more, opening with the increasingly familiar storm effect, but this time, varying it with an acoustic section and a noticeably sudden, dramatic surge in power, within the screams and overall vocal refrain. It’s very welcome; adding something highly pleasurable to the song’s atmosphere. Ending with another acoustic guitar section, much like that of Ozzy’s ‘Killer Of Giants’. Nice touch and they’ve definitely nailed the title track’s memorability stakes.

Overall – A general sense of easy listenability and though it may lose some of its potential edginess, in its lack of versatility and variability, it compensates in vocal energy, drive and instrumental capability and flair. This may not be what you’d call a ‘spectacular’ album, but the title track alone is worth buying it for and for all we thrash metal enthusiasts, it’s old school loyalty and classic essence makes it a great, comfortable addition to our collections.

7/10 *******

For fans of Dio, Ozzy, WASP, Iron Maiden, Def Leppard and Warrant.

http://alone.gr/html/ALONE%200058%20RETCHED%20CD.html to buy physical copies.

https://soundcloud.com/derminasian_tracks for streaming.

https://twitter.com/@DDerminasian

https://www.facebook.com/theoverlordmessiah

https://retched1.bandcamp.com

http://www.facebook.com/friendswholikeretchedtheoverlord

http://www.jango.com/profiles/50801300 (RETCHED radio station)

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