The classics are all well and good but there’s a shit ton of obscure thrash out there that demands to be heard!
To that end, Worship Metal has selected YET ANOTHER 10 obscure old-school thrash albums you NEED to hear. And, this is just Part 4…..there’s plenty more to come!
Allegiance – D.E.S.T.I.T.U.T.I.O.N (1994)
What a concrete slab of hard-hitting thrash Allegiance‘s debut album was!
Overall, this was a relatively familiar release to those already accustomed to Machine Head‘s Burn My Eyes etc but that shouldn’t distract from what is a gruff, rough, street-ready run through some decidedly above average thrash.
With D.e.s.t.i.t.u.t.i.o.n. ringing the same bells as Sacred Reich‘s Ignorance and Atrophy‘s Violent By Nature – with a fair amount of solid groove and mid-tempo stomp supporting Allegiance‘s chug-happy musings – it was the likes of the fast and frenetic “Path of Lies” (with its death metal leanings), and the insanely catchy title track, which marked Allegiance out as potential contenders.
Just one more album followed – 1996’s sub-par Skinman – but D.e.s.t.i.t.u.t.i.o.n is where it’s at!
Crash – Unreal Dreams (1993) [Bulgaria]
Bulgaria’s Crash may have been a one and done kinda band but their debut, Unreal Dreams, was an intriguing mix of rabid German ferocity and progressive/technical nous. Never heard of ‘em? That’s a crying shame as this is some classic early 90’s thrash right here!
With more than a little Destruction circa Release From Agony informing their sound, Unreal Dreams is a bewildering experience; one that delivers an endless stream of fully formed ideas amidst a slew of quality songs.
While “The Day of…” goes for all out ferocity and speed and “The Law” chugs at your exposed heart strings, it’s left to “Wishes” to provide Unreal Dreams with its standout moment. Mid-tempo, catchy and accessible…. if Crash had been blessed with a ‘hit’, “Wishes” would have been it.
They may have crashed and burned after just this one full length release but, for a short while, Bulgaria’s Crash were going toe to toe with many of their European counterparts.
D.A.M – Inside Out (1991) [UK]
Led by Jason McLoughlin’s fierce yet highly melodic vocals – sitting somewhere between Anthrax’s Joey Belladonna, Flotsam and Jetsam’s Erik A.K. and Overkill’s Bobby ‘Blitz’ Ellsworth – D.A.M pedalled a classic metal styled thrashing, intrinsically tied to the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal’s humble beginnings.
Mid-paced, nuanced and blessed with a confident sense of control that steered them away from the fiendishly frantic metallic onslaught of contemporaries Anihilated and Virus, D.A.M’s sense of eerie harmony replete with the necessary crunch instead nestled them nicely next to the likes of Xentrix and Slammer.
With an almost indescribably sinister edge – check out the shiver-inducing “House Of Cards” – D.A.M were unafraid to turn the screw while embracing the suitably epic. Album highlight, “Winter’s Tear”, was a Nevermore meets Metal Church excursion into dramatic thrash territory; part ballad, part nightmare made flesh and if Testament has seen fit to include this outstanding track on The Ritual the world would have paid far more attention. A sad state of affairs but commonplace for most of the UK’s thrash bands.
Decadence – Gangs And Victims (1989) [Belgium]
Another flash in the pan 80’s thrash metal band – and probably for the cult completist only – Belgium’s Decadence were actually a pretty good, hardcore-inflected thrash act with Gangs And Victims proving to be their one and only full length album.
Featuring thin and wiry vocals that grate on occasion, Gangs And Victims wasn’t without its faults….but it wasn’t without its charms either!
With a crossover sound that would appeal to fans of Municipal Waste and their ilk, Decadence were at their best when giving their flurries of snot-nosed punk some room to breathe. The likes of “False Re-Education” and “Back To Decadence” rattled along at breakneck speed but hit their peak when they let the riffs do the talking; the thrashier side of their sound proving to be their ultimate selling point.
Destructor – Maximum Destruction (1985) [USA]
With band members christening themselves Matt Flammable, Pat Rabid, Dave Overkill and Dave Holocaust, you’re not looking for subtlety when you blast Destructor’s 1985 debut Maximum Destruction….. you’re looking for unadulterated THRASH with a side order of POWER!
And guess what? That’s exactly what you get!
Maximum Destruction’s riotously rudimentary nature may sound antiquated to modern ears but these guys were at the forefront of extremity in 1985, matching Slayer in the ferocity stakes and unleashing all manner of merry thrashin’ hell in the name youthful abandonment. An often overlooked release, Maximum Destruction was every inch the equal of Slayer’s Show No Mercy and Anthrax’s Fistful Of Metaland Destructor fully deserved to reach a wider audience with their reprehensibly raw racket.