These teutonic terrors of thrash need no introduction and with 15 studio albums over an incredible 40 year career to choose from, we had a hard time whittling ’em down to, what we believe to be, Destruction‘s 5 essential albums….
5. Diabolical (2022)
We love it when an old-school band releases one of their finest albums in decades…. and that’s exactly why Destruction‘s latest release, Diabolical, kicks off this list!
Sometimes only a sure-fire blast of old school THRASH will do and Destruction (in what was their 40th year of existence no less!) ticked all the damn boxes for those of us craving a satisfying dose of 80’s thrashin’ mayhem in 2022.
With nothing new to report (other than a new line-up, of course), we simply took solace in the fact that Schmier and his band of mercenaries were still churning out high-calibre Teutonic thrash like their very lives depended on it.
While recent lapses into semi-mediocrity threatened to tarnish this legendary band’s formidable legacy (all 4 albums post 2011 had been good….but certainly not great), it was left to Diabolical to showcase a reinvigorated and rejuvenated Destruction and one with a collective fire in their belly’s once again.
The Mad Butcher lives!
4. Infernal Overkill (1985)
These Germanic, bullet-belt strewn boys made one hell of an entrance when their full-length debut detonated nearly 40 years ago.
While Infernal Overkill may have lacked subtlety and finesse it more than made up for its shortcomings in frenzied raw power and youthful exuberance. Blackened thrash was the order of the day and Infernal Overkill came out charred, scorched and searing; the heat generated from this trio of tormentors manifesting itself as fervourous thrashers “The Ritual”, “Thrash Attack” and “Antichrist”.
Destruction would go on to define the Teutonic thrash scene and give rise to the unstoppable force of death metal, but it all began here!
3. The Antichrist (2001)
In 2001, true thrash was in dire need of an adrenalised kick in the ass and it was Destruction who stepped up and jolted the genre back to life!
Make no mistake, Destruction‘s seventh full length album was a seismic shock to the system, resulting in the kind of bowel-rumbling tremor that hadn’t been felt since Demolition Hammer‘s Epidemic Of Violence and Epidemic‘s Decameron sounded thrash’s death knell back in the early 90s.
Not only was thrash metal’s authenticity back but so was its awe-inspiring speed, antagonistic attitude and balls-out brutality, signalling the kind of 100% thrash assault that had been sorely missed for so long. “Thrash till Death” screamed Schmier – and no one doubted him for a second!
The Antichrist was arguably the definitive thrash album of the genre’s early 00’s revival – any examples that prove otherwise will be gratefully received.
2. Eternal Devastation (1986)
Rewind back to ’86 and hot on the tails of the US thrash elite were Germany’s own teutonic terror’s and Destruction‘s Eternal Devastation was a bestial invasion that let the world know that the Germans were coming!
From the all-time great that is “Curse The Gods” to the still surprising folk-thrash opening of “United By Hatred” – and the air-raid siren soloing of “Life Without Sense” – Destruction sounded confident, brash and capable of anything on only their second full length release.
Early European thrash that consolidated Germany’s importance alongside the Bay Area acts, Eternal Devastation remains beloved by thrash fans the world over and for bloody good reason; it’s as devastating as ever.
1. Release From Agony (1987)
Destruction may have started life as a rough ‘n’ ready blackened thrash band but by the time their third full length album arrived, 1987’s Release From Agony, they’d transformed themselves into a technical thrash act par excellence.
The mad butcher didn’t just strike back with this album, it hacked and sliced its way through the competition and while (originally) the quality of Release From Agony‘s production left a lot to be desired, the likes of “Sign Of Fear” and “Survive To Die” indicated that Destruction were now operating on a higher level than the majority of their peers.
A thrilling combination of insanely technical riffs and abstract song structures marks out Release From Agony as a true masterpiece of Teutonic thrash……and Destruction would, arguably, never be so wilfully obscure again!
Infernal Overkill (1985) / Eternal Devastation (1986) / Release From Agony (1987) / Cracked Brain (1990) / The Least Successful Human Cannonball (1998) [not strictly ‘canon’, ironically] / All Hell Breaks Loose (2000) / The Antichrist (2001) / Metal Discharge (2003) / Inventor Of Evil (2005) / D.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N (2008) / Day Of Reckoning (2011) / Spiritual Genocide (2012) / Under Attack (2016) / Born To Perish (2019) / Diabolical (2022)
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