Testament – Low (1994)
Testament may be the most well known band on this list but 1994’s Low often receives little recognition when compared to their 80’s output.
This was the first album the band released without founding member and guitar god Alex Skolnick and to be fair it takes a little getting used to. Testament blatantly missed his classical style flourishes but once you get past his glaring absence, Low is a bruising thrash-fest that does not disappoint.
Chock full of top quality thrash tunes from “Hail Mary” to “All I Could Bleed” to album highlight, the pulverising “Dog Faced Gods”, in which man mountain Chuck Billy unleashes his truly hellacious roar, Low maintained the high standards Testament had set themselves over the years. They also found time to slow the pace down with the fantastic “Trail Of Tears”, just one of a number of Testament tracks to address the plight of Native Americans.
All in all, Low is a fantastic thrash album with death metal leanings, that should have had the likes of Dave Mustaine and James Hetfield frantically taking notes; Testament were still thrashin’ hard while 50% of The Big 4 were busy softening their sound.