One Machine is the brainchild of former Testament/Nevermore guitarist Steve Smyth with The Final Cull being the second album from the outfit who also feature British frontman Chris Hawkins amongst their ranks. Described by Smyth as “the album I’ve personally wanted to write for years,” The Final Cull is a flawless display from start to finish.

Let’s be honest though, with a pedigree similar to the one Smyth has, you’d expect nothing less than an absolutely immaculate performance from him and his band mates and, as the title track glides into almost seven minutes of shredding, groovy, epic-sounding metal, that’s exactly what you get. In fact, epic metal is probably no more than this album deserves. It’s got the mammoth grooves of Testament, the shredding of Nevermore, and the pomp and grandeur of Iron Maiden and that whole epic power metal scene.

In fact, the only time the album really starts to labour is when the band grind their way through “The Grand Design”. For the rest of it though, and especially tracks like “Born From This Hate” where not only does Hawkins put in his best Rob Halfordesque impression, but One Machine also really compact their sound into three minute palatable bites of power/thrash metal, The Final Cull is the kind of release for true headbangers everywhere.

Obviously the traditional metal element of The Final Cull might put a lot of the more modern metal fans off, but if you’re aware of Smyth’s previous work in Testament and Nevermore, or in fact just a fan of tight, impressive musicianship, then there is not a lot on the album that will leave you disappointed.

Track Listing:

01. Forewarning
02. The Final Cull
03. New Motive Power
04. The Grand Design
05. Screaming For Light
06. Born From This Hate
07. Computer God
08. Welcome To The World
09. Ashes In The Sky
10. Summoning Of The Soul

Run Time: 51:02
Release Date: September 19, 2015

Check out the song “Forewarning” here.

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.