Masked Toys – Bipolar Disorder preview

Some authentic Thrash which reminds me mainly of Exodus and Tankard and the good-old-days of the late 80’s, beginning of the 90’s. We’ve got three pretty raw recordings, but it definitively goes with the style. Luci – Voice & Madness, Bogdan – Guitars & Ideas, Sorin -Bass & Other strings, Ursu – Drums & Techs and set-up get back together last year determined to kick it hard again after a 16 years hiatus.
Originally formed in autumn of 1993, by Sorin (bass and vocals) and Bogdan (guitars), both freshmen at Iasi University, the kine-up was completed with Debo on drums, Cip on bass, while Sorin has concentrated exclusively on the the lead singer duties. After finalizing several songs, the band had gigs at “Rock Gala” in Bacau, “Young Rock for Youngs” in Piatra Neamt, where they were awarded the “Best Newcomer” prize, along with other regional shows. In February 1995 they recorded the demo “Greatest sHits” whose exciting originality blew up the underground scene. After an impressive participation at “Top-T Buzau”, Sorin had to leave the country in 1996 and the band failed to compensate his absence while Bogdan and Debo joined the Romanian-American band Destroyer.
But real passion never dies, therefore, in 2011, after Sorin had the chance to meet Luci (vocals) and Ursu (drums), the Masked Toys’ adventure began again. They quickly co-opted Bogdan again, and the band is back on track with full force. Taking by assault the stages again and working on the brand new set of songs, we’ve got a three track teaser of what’s coming up. Read more Masked Toys – Bipolar Disorder preview

Overkill – The Electric Age (2012)

Although everybody seems to have a different account of who came first in the world of New York/New Jersey area Thrash Metal, it seems certain that New Jersey’s Overkill have stayed around the longest, and have never let their fans down by remaining musically consistent and true to their roots for over 30 years and an unprecedented 16 full length albums and it seems we have the certain answer who’s banging till the end. Evil never dies? Who knows, but Overkill seems and sounds unstoppable. By 1987’s “Taking Over”, the band had worked their way up to a deal with the major label Atlantic Records. This relationship would last another 7 years based on the strength and consistency of Overkill’s music. 1989’s “The Years Of Decay” marked Overkill as one of the most murderous Thrash bands of the decade and one of the leading forces of the genre. Read more Overkill – The Electric Age (2012)

Craving – Fucked Up Beyond Repair, EP (2011)

Released in May 2011 as free download on Reverbnation, the self-produced debut EP by the French metalcore outfit Craving it’s a brutally honest massacre, a loud as hell blending of classic thrash and the nowadays raging post-hardcore/metal sounds. Some of their riffs, constructions reminds me of Testament and Sepultura, eventually Kreator. The title track definitively could became a huge headbanging anthem back in the 80s, beginning of the 90s. And – why not – it is possible to be a metal anthem nowadays too, true metalers never die!
We’ve got 6 furious and rapid tracks, the perfect soundtrack for a good time banging, so go and grab it! Read more Craving – Fucked Up Beyond Repair, EP (2011)

Venom – Fallen Angels (2011)

“Welcome To Hell”, their 1981’s debut album influenced literally thousands of bands, and while Venom were one of the first incarnations of extreme metal their giving the name of a brand new sub-genre of metal with their 82’s, second album: “Black Metal”. Although lending its name to the latter genre, today the album is often regarded as thrash metal rather than black metal. Venom’s music contributed to shape the style and to the development of many metal bands and numerous bands copying styles, themes and imagery from the band. Although even Metallica had opened for Venom on an early ’80s tour, Venom were regarded by many critics and some metal fans as “a trio of buffoons”, but also they had several conflicts with other musicians. In his Black Flag tour diary, Henry Rollins wrote about a 1986 performance when Black Flag opened for Venom and he mentioned that Venom was hilarious, with mediocre playing. Venom replayed by saying: “his band was useless and that’s why he writes books now”.
As teenager back in the 80’s I was quite fascinated by the epic 20-minute title track of their 1984’s “At War with Satan”, but honestly I never took too seriously their Satanic references. But also I have to admit that I wouldn’t bet back then that in 2011 I will listening – and really like it – a brand new Venom album. Read more Venom – Fallen Angels (2011)

Megadeth – TH1RT3EN (2011)

This might be the last opportunity for Born again Christian, Mr. Mustaine to claim the crown and the throne of Metal. Metallica with “Lulu”, the controversy collaboration with Lou Reed left their throne unwatched and the crown can be stolen. Anthrax already delivered a pretty strong release, “Worship Music” on September 12, and Mr. Mustain response is “Thirteen”, the thirteenth studio album consist of thirteen brand new songs. Regarding the “Big Four” thrash metal acts, Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax, still, my money is on Slayer even if it’s quite uncertain they will release new material this year due Jeff Hanneman’s health condition.
Although, “TH1RT3EN” might be the best Megadeth album in decades. Since 1992’s “Countdown to Extinction”, Megadeth wasn’t this kicking and biting. “TH1RT3EN” also marks the return of Dave Ellefson who left Megadeth back in 2002 having a severe disagreement over royalties. Canadian drummer Shawn Drover joined Megadeth back in 2004 while guitarist Chris Broderick (ex-Jag Panzer and ex-Nevermore) joined in 2008 replacing Glen Drover. Read more Megadeth – TH1RT3EN (2011)

Slayer – Hell Awaits (1985)

If ever breaks of hell were on the loose, I guess it was all beginning with “Hell Awaits”. If the doors of hell were unlocked, it happened 26 year ago and the key was this 37:11 minutes of no mercy and reign in blood ( 😀 ). Seven tracks of brutality and aggression as only Tom Araya, Jeff Hanneman, Kerry King and Dave Lombardo knows to deliver since and forever. No weakness, no hesitation, no second thought, only killer riffs, fast and furious drums and deadly howls and screams. Araya spit his killer thoughts like no other, Hanneman and King have the most murderous solos and some of the most cutting riffs ever bring to this Earth while Lombardo is not only deadly precise, but fast and colorful simultaneously. Read more Slayer – Hell Awaits (1985)

Anthrax – Worship Music (2011)

Back in the mid 80’s “Spreading the Disease” was one of my favorite albums. “Madhouse”, “Aftershock”, the killer “Armed and Dangerous” and “Medusa” were daily head-banging munitions for me. And I love them since as I loved the 1990’s “Persistence of Time”, “Keep It in the Family”, “Belly of the Beast” or the murderous cover of “Got the Time” by Joe Jackson were killer proofs of how great band Anthrax really are and they definitively deserves to be one of the “Big 4” alongside Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer.
During 1991 they collaborated with pioneering rap artists Public Enemy on a joint version of “Bring the Noise”. Also, the EP “Attack of the Killer B’s” was recorded during 1991, featuring a new version of “I’m the Man” and a cover of “Bring the Noise” on which Scott Ian did the vocals, as well as some other killer tracks: “Startin’ Up a Posse”, “N.F.B. (Dallabnikufesin)”, “Parasite” (Kiss cover), and two S.O.D. covers “Milk (Ode to Billy)” and “Chromatic Death”.
BUT, I also believe the best thing ever happened to this band was kicking out Joey Belladonna in 1992 and bring to the microphone John Bush, formerly of Armored Saint. Just listen “Only”, “Room for One More”, “Black Lodge” or “1000 Points of Hate” and you will hear definitively the difference. “Sound of White Noise” (1993), “Stomp 442” (1995), “Volume 8: The Threat Is Real” (1998) and “We’ve Come for You All” (2003) are all great Anthrax albums even if the record labels don’t offer them their full support.
“Worship Music” have history. The recordings beginning in 2008 and were finished this year… Read more Anthrax – Worship Music (2011)

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