Cultural Warfare – Future Kill
Oakland’s Cultural Warfare take classic thrash metal characteristics and give them a modern facelift on their new politically-charged EP, Future Kill. Across 20 blistering minutes, this California quartet craft their own brand of aural warfare that retains the vigor and grit of the genre’s heyday, while building a new sonic war machine fitted with a darker, more technical edge. The guitars and bass, both of which are tuned to bellowing lows, chug and gallop like the Four Horsemen if their steeds where made of metal instead of flesh. The drumming is concise, technically-proficient, and delivers rhythmic pain throughout the release. At the heart of these future thrash stampedes is frontman Jacques Serrano, whose commanding vocals range from soaring, classic metal highs, rabid grunts and ear-piercing screeches. All of these elements are first employed in opener “Defy the Blade”. This six-minute track wreaks havoc with its wealth of barreling guitar riffs and jarring rhythmic shifts as Serrano’s volatile vocal performances help create a sense of chaos on this damaging cut. The beatings continue in “Ratten Krieg”; an unpredictable track that features a vicious battle between thunderous thrash gallops, melodic fervor and bursts of angularity. “The Damned” and “Future Kill” round things off with their teeth-kicking, guitar exhibitions which come across like Testament songs written just for the apocalypse. The record ends with the 83 second, moody guitar piece “Our Death Earth”, which ties everything together in a nice, doomed package. Future Kill is a must-listen for thrash fans old and young. Cultural Warfare is one of the few newer bands helping to give thrash metal the makeover it desperately needs.
Release Date: January 27, 2017
Label: M-Theory Audio
Favorite Tracks: “Defy the Blade” and “Ratten Krieg”
For Fans Of: Testament, Exodus and Death Angel
The Brood – The Truth Behind
With 33 minutes of relentless grinding fury, London’s The Brood deliver a promising debut with The Truth Behind. Classic grindcore elements are incorporated with crust, punchy hardcore, death and black metal, and are fitted with vitriolic lyrics that range from cheeky scenes of horror and societal criticism. It is a record that doesn’t take itself too seriously, but doesn’t skimp on heart-stopping metallic carnage. After the lurching instrumental “Incubation”, the record jumps into high gear with “Barbie Voorhees”. The 43-second assault aims for the throat with its grimy, hyper-speed riffs, head-spinning drumming and acidic vocals. From here onward, The Truth Behind becomes more savage and unpredictable with each subsequent track. “Of Guts and Fire” conjures skull-bashing riffs that effortlessly shift from fast hardcore chord progressions, disemboweling death metal tremolo picking, black metal blitzes and groove-laden breakdowns. These frantic stylistic shifts are commonly observed in the album’s longer tracks, such as the fiery “Reign of the Leeches” and “Lobotomized”. Then there are tracks, such as “One by One” and “Seeds of Demise”, that display a more straightforward hardcore approach with their collections of spin-kick inspiring beatdowns. With the exception of a couple of instrumental interludes, The Truth Behind is one venomous attack after the next. With their immediate and ferocious songs and macabre sense of humor, The Brood are off to a good start.
Release Date: February 3, 2017
Label: Give Praise Records
Favorite Tracks: “Of Guts and Fire”, “One by One” and “Swallowed by the Earth”
For Fans Of: Brutal Truth, Pig Destroyer and Nasum