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Canadian Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old School Albums

Canadian Thrash = Great Thrash!

Infernäl Mäjesty – None Shall Defy (1988)

Infernäl Mäjesty – None Shall Defy (CD) - Discogs

Despite the cartoonish artwork which adorns their debut album, Infernäl Mäjesty were an undeniably savage act and they made an immediate impact on the underground with the release of None Shall Defy.

The antithesis of Razor, Annihilator and their ilk, Infernäl Mäjesty specialised in the sounds of the underworld and had more in common with the unholy terror of Slayer‘s Hell Awaits and Possessed‘s Seven Churches than anything released by fellow countrymen Exciter and Anvil.

A key release in the ongoing development of death metal, None Shall Defy‘s march towards Satan came replete with a vile and ultimately evil aesthetic; one characterised by the unnerving sounds of blackened death/thrash perfection found on “S.O.S” and the scintillating title track.

Don’t let the sub-par cover art fool you, Infernäl Mäjesty meant serious business…..the devil’s business!

Annihilator – Alice In Hell (1989)

Annihilator - Alice In Hell | Références | Discogs

A simple and often stated fact: Jeff Waters is one of the finest metal guitarists of all time. You can’t argue with such a statement and his prodigious, precocious talent first came to the world’s attention on Annihilator‘s stunning debut.

In 1989, Alice In Hell represented technical thrash of the highest order, an album overflowing with ideas and executed with more panache and ability than virtually anyone outside of Megadeth. The unforgettably monikered Randy Rampage (R.I.P) led the charge – delivering one of the dirtiest, unrefined and downright unpredictable vocal performances in thrash metal history – and when welded to Waters’ exquisite riffs, thrash metal magic was inevitable.

Check out the blistering speed of  “Human Insecticide” and the incredible interplay and sheer maddening bravado of “Alison Hell” for ample proof that an on-fire Jeff Waters, and an-on fire Randy Rampage, were a formidable partnership forged in the bowels of hell….or Canada!

Voivod – Killing Technology (1987)

Voïvod – Killing Technology (2017, Vinyl) - Discogs

It was a close call between this and 1988’s Dimension Hatröss but Killing Technology is so much thrashier and considering this is a best of Canadian THRASH list…. it’s Killing Technology that nicks the top spot!

One of thrash metal’s most distinctive bands should need no introduction – with Voivod having spent their entire career releasing music that barely stayed within the confines of thrash and purposefully flaunted the rules at every step – and Killing Technology can be considered their pinnacle thrash release. That’s not to say that future albums wouldn’t usurp this title (the likes of Angel Rat, Nothingface and The Outer Limits are all outstanding prog metal releases) but Killing Technology is where it’s at if we’re talking cold, hard, thrash.

Atypical and abstract, the riffs of Piggy and the vocal delivery of Snake remain utterly unique and otherworldly and this twisting, turning, tumultuous sci-fi fever-dream made flesh still sounds like absolutely nothing else on earth. “Tornado”, “Ravenous Medicine”, “Cockroaches” were light years ahead of the pack and their peers (if they have ever really had any) are still frantically trying to keep up.

Pure. Genius.

Honourable Mentions (remembering that a one album per band mantra applied in the above list): Aggression – The Full Treatment (1987) / Annihilator – Never, Neverland (1990) / Anonymus – Ni Vu, Ni Connu (1994) / Beyond – Quantum Bummer (1990) / Chronical Disturbance – Foggy Creek (1990) / D.B.C – Universe (1989) / Deathamin – Mass Of What (1992) / Disciples Of Power – Ominous Prophecy (1992) / Disciples Of Power – Invincible Enemy (1993) / Eudoxis – Open Fire (1991) / Obliveon – Nemesis (1993) / Overthrow – Within Suffering (1990) / Razor – Evil Invaders (1985) / Razor – Malicious Intent (1986) / Razor – Violent Restitution (1988) / Sacrifice – Torment In Fire (1985) / Sacrifice – Soldiers Of Misfortune (1990) / Sacrifice – Apocalypse Inside (1993) / Savage Steel – Do or Die (1988) / Slaughter – Strappado (1987) / Soothsayer – Have A Good Time (1989) / Voivod – Rrröööaaarrr (1986)  / Voivod – Dimension Hatröss (1988)

Check out our other related thrash features in this series:

German Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

British Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

Belgian Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

Japanese Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

American Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

Australian Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old-School Albums

About Chris Jennings (1920 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/

4 Comments on Canadian Thrash: The 10 Greatest Old School Albums

  1. laurent ramadier // December 2, 2020 at 4:38 pm // Reply

    Well there’s cheese as usual wirth those sort of list..you don’t put SACRIFICE 2nd opus so far as it’s easily way BETTER than Reign in blood..; and yopu put “nemesis” instead of “from this day forward” n°3 or so..;so much better than I MAJESTY or RAZOR

  2. Chris Jennings // December 2, 2020 at 7:00 pm // Reply

    Right you are bud

  3. Pete in Colorado // December 4, 2020 at 2:22 am // Reply

    Hey Chris! Great list!
    I had to seek out Disciples of Power and Entropy as I was not familiar with them and the only ones from this list that I did not have in any format whatsoever. Thank you for the heads up! Just recently discovered DBC and thought they were OK. From this Day Forward is a good one. I’ve had that one since 1990 when my buddy Greg was selling some of his CD collection to pay the bills! I helped him out and he sold me the aforementioned, Demolition Hammer’s Tortured Existence, Devastation’s Idolatry and Defiance’s Product of Society. Nice haul! I wish I could like Dyoxen’s First Among Equals (1989) more than I do. Not sure what my deal is! LOVE Annihilator Alice in Hell. When they came out with Never Neverland thereafter I was kind of bummed because Mr. Rampage was not the vocalist! And what can you say about the mighty Voivod? Dimension H is my fave but Killing T is definitely thrashier! It took me awhile to gravitate towards Voivod as I first heard them on a Metal Massacre Best of? with Blower from War and Pain and I thought they sucked! Years later, in the summer of 1988, I seen Tribal Convictions and Psychic Vacuum videos on Headbangers and I was blown away!
    Definitely one band I wish I could have seen live back in the day! I will have to check out the honorable mentions I am missing.
    Thanks again for the kick ass list! PS I did see Exciter and also Kick Axe live back in ’84. Great stuff! Yay Canada!

  4. Chris Jennings // December 4, 2020 at 7:41 am // Reply

    Thanks for reading and commenting Pete! Glad the article lead you to check out Disciples of Power and Entropy – job done!

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