Acknowledging that we couldn’t possibly have heard every single Canadian thrash album released this year, these are our 5 Greatest Canadian Thrash Metal Albums of 2022.
These are the 5 Canadian thrash albums that blew us away, the albums that warranted endless spins, the albums that prompted involuntarily head-banging and generally put a big fuckin’ smile on our grumpy ol’ faces!
5. Besieged – Violence Beyond All Reason
Released: June 6th, 2022 via Unspeakable Axe Records
12 years between albums is a long ol’ time. Fortunately, in the case of Canadian death thrashers Besieged time had done nothing to quell their hatred and fury, and Violence Beyond All Reason ably lived up to its namesake.
And we ain’t kidding, either. This shit was brutal.
Led by Nolan Smit’s vicious barks, Besieged attacked at such a frightening pace that this was surely the ‘whiplash’-inducing reaction Metallica were after all those years ago. Violence Beyond All Reason categorically wrecked your neck and Besieged weren’t gonna be paying your medical bills either. Just give opener “Last Chance” a quick spin and let us know how your 5th and 6th vertebrae are feeling come the morning.
That’s right muthafuckers, you’re surrounded….Besieged are on the offensive. Might as well just surrender and face the inevitable!
4. Detherous – Unrelenting Malevolence
Released: November 11th, 2022 via Redefining Darkness Records
Remember Demoliton Hammer? Of course you do! They were releasing the heaviest thrash shit around in the early 90s and their furious onslaught trod the finest line between thrash and death metal imaginable. Detherous remember Demolition Hammer very well. So well in fact that they’ve modelled themselves wholesale on ’em – and we’re fuckin’ thrilled they have!
Admittedly, covering DH‘s “Skull Fracturing Nightmare” is taking things a bit too far – and we can honestly say that any one of Unrelenting Malevolence‘s 9 original tracks could happily sit on Demolition Hammer‘s Epidemic Of Violence – but there was so much unrelenting, head-banging, groove-filled fun to be had with this album that we just don’t care how close to plagiarism Detherous come.
Play it loud. Play it proud. Detherous are bringing the pain (and the skull fracturing nightmares)!
3. Tymo – The Art Of A Maniac
Released: Independently on February 5th, 2022
In the mood for a good ol’ fashioned thrashing? Feeling the need for speed? Is it party time?
If the answer to any (or all) of the above is/was a resounding “fuck yes!” then Tymo’s The Art Of A Maniac was the thrash album for you (or for February 2022, at the very least).
With the thrash revival rolling on unabated it was perhaps no surprise to find these Canadians sticking to the Terrifier, Warbringer, Crisix, Gama Bomb etc template. And stick to it they did. So, don’t go expecting anything remotely original as Tymo were simply playing tried and tested new-school thrash with a tasty old-school twist. With warp speed being the preferred pace for much of The Art Of A Maniac’s duration, the likes of “War Beneath The Skull” and “Age Of Deception” were notable for deviating, a little, from the battery of what surrounded them. Not that you’ll be looking for respite when the savagery of “Estrogenocide” (damn those deadly hormones) kicked in!
Relentless and, most importantly FUN, Tymo’s clean, crisp lethal riffage and Tim Tymo’s feral barks combined to create a detailed thrash canvas liberally sprayed with blood, sweat, tears and beers….Bob Ross would approve (probably).
2. Autonoesis – Moon of Foul Magics
Released: Independently on August 25th, 2022
Pushing the boundaries of thrash as far as they can go, Autonoesis‘ 2nd album, Moon Of Foul Magics, was a bewildering genre-bender that kinda came out of nowhere. Sure, we were aware of their self-titled 2020 debut but this, this came as a shock to the system.
From a genre perspective it’s hard to nail Autonoesis down. It’s all over the damn place! Blackened thrash? Progressive thrash? Just plain ol’ prog? Take your pick because we’re not gonna make the decision for you. Instead, we’ll settle for saying that more than a few moments of Moon Of Foul Magics will have you screaming “This ain’t fuckin’ thrash you pricks!” at the top of your lungs.
However, once the Vektor-esque title track kicks you in the tits you may very well change your mind. In fact, the blackened thrash attack of “Raise The Dead” and “The Conjurer” may well reinforce our point that Moon Of Foul Magics is thrash and we’ll retire for the evening; safe in the knowledge that we’ll sleep well in our beds – snuggled up with our Slayer-adorned duvet.
1. Voivod – Synchro Anarchy
Released: February 11th, 2022 via Century Media Records
Is there any band on the planet as consistently unconventional and consistently surprising as Canada’s favourite sons, Voivod? Of course there isn’t, which is why the metal world holds them so dear and has fully supported their embarkation to the next sphere of existence.
We certainly would have forgiven Voivod if they’d called it a day after the untimely passing of Denis “Piggy” D’Amour back in 2005, but to see them pick themselves up, dust themselves down, recruit the formidable talent of Daniel “Chewy” Mongrain and go about writing and recording new material warms the cockles of a good metaller’s heart!
Which brings us neatly to Synchro Anarchy, a progressive thrash metal masterclass from a band who still couldn’t sound like anyone else even if they wanted to! Otherworldly and always on the precipice of discovering new sounds plucked from the farthest reaches of the cosmos, Voivod proved once again that they are both fearless and peerless.
Opener “Paranormalium” was pretty damn thrashy as it snake-d (sic) its way through inimitable time-changes and moods. Convulsive and confusing, the likes of the title track and “Mind Clock” were then ‘weird’ and off-kilter in a way only Voivod can be. Trying to describe these songs is virtually pointless. They’re Voivod-ian in nature, simple as that, and if you know and love this band you’ll intrinsically understand what we mean!
There truly is no band quite like Voivod.