Thrash metal is a different genre these days, and as most of you metalheads know, a lot of the bands have definitively stood the test of time. In the U.S. we have our Big Four, and whether you like their new material or not, they have impacted thrash for decades for a reason.
The Teutonic Big Four includes Destruction, Kreator, Sodom, and Tankard. Destruction has been in the German thrash metal scene since their formation in 1982. Their original name, Knight of Demon, changed in 1984. Among their discography, Infernal Overkill (1985) and Eternal Devastation (1986) are the two best known. Fourteen-plus albums later, this trio continue to leave their imprint on the thrash scene with album Thrash Anthems II, a sequel to their 2007 album Thrash Anthems.
Now arises the question that all veteran bands receive decades into their career – Do they still have it? Indeed, Destruction deliver.
“Confused Mind” has an oddly soothing guitar intro which proceeds into a massive assault. If you pick just the guitar apart from the song, it is like a roller coaster curvature, rise, fall, breathe, repeat. On the song “Black Mass,” Mike Sifringer’s riffs sound a touch like Megadeth’s “Holy Wars.” Marcel Schmier’s vocals are still bad ass; a raging volcano heard throughout each song on this album. “Frontbeast” and “Dissatisfied Existence” showcase that classic rapid fire drumming by Vaaver Dramowicz. I hear a slight hint of doom in “Black Death” with its dark-toned fretwork and on “The Antichrist,” where the vocals were truly menacing. “Satan’s Vengeance” is 100 percent kick ass with pure adrenaline speed.
Aside from a great album, there is immense admiration for this band with decades of experience. If Destruction have survived “ the dark times” in metal history and can still inspire wall-of-destruction pitting, that says something in and of itself.
Thrash Anthems II is out now on Nuclear Blast Records. Buy it here!