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5 Albums That Kept THRASH Alive in the Mid to Late 90s (Part 3)

Remember, this is just Part 3....there is more in this series to come!

Source // www.nicherecords.ro

After the release of some seminal thrash albums in the early 90’s (Megadeth’s Rust In Peace Dark Angel’s Time Does Not Heal / Annihilator’s Never, Neverland Death Angel’s Act III / Heathen’s Victims Of Deception to name but a few) those flannel-wearing whinge-bags of grunge took over and thrash kinda died on its arse, seemingly overnight.

While some bands split and others adapted their sound to meet the demands of a new audience, fortunately a few belligerent bastards refused to bow down to changing trends and thrashed like never before!

Here’s 5 albums by CLASSIC thrash bands that didn’t give a flying fuck that thrash’s glory days were behind them, keeping thrash alive until its long-awaited resurgence in the early 00’s….

D.R.I – Full Speed Ahead (1995) [USA]

Is it thrash? Is it hardcore punk? It’s D.R.I muthafuckers and Full Speed Ahead remains a damn fine representation of these imbeciles’ pioneering crossover thrash!

Here was an album that hadn’t even heard of grunge and presumed Korn was something you ate on the cob! Careening forth at high speed, D.R.I all but perfected their crossover sound on this, their final full length album. No one – and we mean no one – was able to meld punk and metal as well as D.R.I and thrashers must have been happier than a pig in shit when Full Speed Ahead dropped in 1995.

A full-on crossover thrash assault on the senses, Full Speed Ahead‘s many pleasures were clear to hear as D.R.I continued to defiantly thrash like their very lives depended on it!

Infernäl Mäjesty – Unholier Than Thou (1998) [Canada]

11 long years after None Shall Defy shook up the underground, Infernäl Mäjesty returned majestically, armed to the teeth with a set of blasphemous thrashers that shook the fillings from your teeth.

Adapting well to the need for more complex and adventurous arrangements, Infernal Majesty’s technicality also came to the fore – particularly on “Gone The Way Of All Flesh” – as they procured inspiration from progressive thrash and death metal to create a release that still sounds devastating today. In ’98, there was only one mantra a thrash fan (and thrash band) could live by…..and that was to fight for your thrash lives! Fight to the death!

Here was how to deliver a top-class thrash album in the late 90’s, with supreme conviction and no concern for prevailing trends.

Canadian thrash is a wonderful thing and Infernäl Mäjesty are a wonderful band.

Kreator – Cause For Conflict (1995) [Germany]

Every thrasher worth his salt is aware of Kreator‘s ill-advised, genre-splicing dalliances with industrial metal and goth in the 90’s, but to dismiss their output from this period entirely would be remiss to say the least!

Following the semi-confusing Renewal, Kreator‘s Cause For Conflict heralded a temporary return to thrashier realms and while it hardly compares to the ferocity of Kreator’s 80’s output, at least it sounded more energetic and more rounded than Renewal.

With Joe Cangelosi (Whiplash / Brooklyn Militia / Uncivil War) ensconced behind the kit, Kreator sounded unhinged again as they rattled and roared through industrial-tinged thrashers which seamlessly combined Mille Petrozza’s recent experiments with his thrash metal glories of old. There’s a strong case for Cause For Conflict being Kreator’s most underrated album….but we’ll leave that for you to decide!

Tankard – The Tankard (1995) [Germany]

True Tankard fans often rate The Tankard as the German stalwarts most under-appreciated album…and for bloody good reason!

Containing the most diverse set of songs of the German’s nearly 40 year career, The Tankard may not be as instantly infectious as their classics Chemical Invasion and The Morning After but it arguably contains the finest songs these Teutonic beer-lovin’ terrors have ever penned (or regurgitated). From the insanely catchy chorus of “Minds On The Moon” to the punky tempos of “Close Encounter“, Tankard’s 7th album may still be the most streamlined and immediately accessible of their entire career.

The fact they delivered their most complete album slap bang in the middle of a decade that didn’t give a fuck about thrash proves their commitment to the cause. Tankard will always thrash; they’re as reliable as the result of mixing grain, hops, yeast and water!!

Related content: The 5 Essential TANKARD Albums

Testament – The Gathering (1999) [USA]

Testament – The Gathering (1999, CD) - Discogs

Proof that thrash was truly going to be a dominant force once again can be layed at the feet of one of the greatest thrash bands in existence; the mighty Testament!

Recruiting three legendary elder statesman in the considerable form of Dave Lombardo (Slayer), James Murphy (DeathObituaryDisincarnate) and Steve DiGiorgio (SadusDeath), Testament’s core duo of Chuck Billy and Eric Petersen laid down the ultimate challenge to thrash metals’ revivalists; keep up with this they demanded, unsurprisingly most couldn’t.

From the virtually unparalleled ferocity of album opener “D.N.R. (Do Not Resuscitate)” and the thrashy grooves of “Down For Life” to the demolition job death/thrash of “Legions Of The Dead” and the fiendish melodies of “Riding The Snake“, this supergroup signalled thrash’s rebirth in a manner that marks The Gathering out as an album that still sounds nothing less than magnificent well over 20 years after release.

Related content: The 5 Essential TESTAMENT Albums

Also in this Series:

5 Albums That Kept THRASH Alive in the Mid to Late 90s (Part 1)

5 Albums That Kept THRASH Alive in the Mid to Late 90s (Part 2)

About Chris Jennings (1978 Articles)
I love metal. Always have. Always will. As editor of Worship Metal - a site dedicated to being as positive about metal and its myriad of sub-genres as possible - my aim is to 'worship' metal through honest reviews, current news and a wide variety of features; offering the same exposure to underground bands as we do to mainstream/well known acts. Our mantra; the bands are partners and we exist to serve the bands \m/

2 Comments on 5 Albums That Kept THRASH Alive in the Mid to Late 90s (Part 3)

  1. Kreator “Cause for conflict” is one of the most brutal thrash albums of the mid 90’s!

  2. Metal Vinyl // April 3, 2024 at 4:21 am // Reply

    Overkill doesn’t get mentioned nearly enough. They put out a solid stack of thrash albums in the 90s and gained momentum blasting into the 2000s.

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