In general, I am always a little wary of self-titled albums as sometimes they tend to be a little light on substance, but make no mistake, this is an aggressively catchy thrash record which in part nods to the 80’s thrash “Big 4”, but still tries to carve out a niche in the new breed thrash establishment of today.
The pseudo-satanic off key start to “The Hive” is brutally ended by the neck wrenching ferocity of the drumming from Phil Dubois-Coyne (think Raymond Herrera double kick on speed) and as it continues throughout the whole album. The constant beat satisfyingly overlaid with some killer licks by Dan Gargiulo and accompanied by David Davidson’s graveled vocals (inc. thumping bass) complete the overall sound that definitely has tints of Exodus (Rob Dukes) and Testament with extra helpings of a certain Fear Factory (c. 1995 – Remanufacture).
The album continues through a decidedly appealing crescendo of coarsely arranged double kick drums (“Scattering the Flock”, but in truth every song) machine gun guitars, and brutally searing vocals. What I truly like is the extensive nuances in each song (some have said this is a negative – each song doesn’t seem to be related – but who needs another concept album), there are elements of deep South Twang (“Invidious”), insane “twiddly” eclectic genius in “Spastic” and melodic drifting soundscapes in “Entombed by Wealth”. There isn’t a slow or even bad song on this record; however, don’t listen if you are prone to headaches! There is an awesome amount of power and thumping intensity on display, especially given that they are a trio. The energy and potency the three members seem to be able to generate makes for an ear pounding violence party…
On the surface, if you’re into thrash, I’d give this one a definite go – I love it! If you’re not into thrash, then this could convert you. My only negative really is that I am not entirely sure about the cover artwork – it looks like a lizard/medusa/melted face man, but that’s just something of personal preference (I don’t like the logo either).
01. The Hive
02. Scattering the Flock
03. Arch Fiend
04. Numbing Agents
06. The Gift You Gave
09. Entombed by Wealth
10. A Visitation
Run Time: 47:06
Release Date: August 6, 2013 (North America)
Check out the song “The Hive”