With all the talk in 2016 of 1986 being the greatest year in thrash history (and it was), Worship Metal has decided to instead cast its eye over the huge number of thrash albums that always seem to be overlooked in favour of the likes of Slayer’s Reign In Blood, Metallica’s Master Of Puppets, Dark Angel’s Darkness Descends, Nuclear Assault’s Game Over, Kreator’s Pleasure To Kill, Flotsam And Jetsam’s Doomsday For The Deceiver, Metal Church’s The Dark, Destruction’s Eternal Devastation and Megadeth’s Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying?
While these aforementioned classic albums of 1986 fully deserve all the endless plaudits sent their way – hell, we waxed lyrical about them in our 30 incredible albums that turn 30 years old in 2016 feature – but ’86 was such a pioneering year for the burgeoning thrash scene because of the sheer wealth of quality releases that arrived in just one 12 month period….not just because of the albums that made it big!
1986 saw thrash explode and amongst the also-rans were some exceptional releases that often find themselves cast aside. This list isn’t exhaustive, it’s certainly not ranked in any order and its existence is to simply highlight why 1986 was such an important year for thrash, without resorting to analysing the same old releases.
REMEMBER! This is just Part 1, there’s plenty more thrash to come!!!
Sacrifice – Torment In Fire
Sacrifice’s debut (included here due to it’s U.S. Metal Blade release in 1986) was fiendishly evil, brutally effective and pure diabolical mayhem set to music.
Featuring some truly spine-scraping shrieks and riffs that threaten to veer into all out distorted noise, Sacrifice may have been undeniably immature at this stage but there’s no escaping the sheer impact this feral release still posseses.
These Canadian miscreants often sounded more like their unhinged German counterparts than the clinically precise riffing found south of the border. Subsequently, Sacrifice found themselves joining the ranks of the demented Destruction, Kreator, Whiplash and Possessed and while a god-awful production job slightly lessens its impact, Torment In Fire remains an integral stepping stone in thrash metal’s eventual transition to death metal.
Exumer – Possessed By Fire
Exumer’s Possessed By Fire is a perfectly executed exercise in bestial devastation and should have elevated these Germans to superstar status.
Completely unpredictable, Exumer’s sound is defiantly thrash but not as intimidatingly raw as the albums produced at the time by their peers Destruction, Sodom and Kreator. In fact, at this stage in their career Exumer were the more accomplished musicians; each track running the gamut of time changes and mood-swings and exhibiting an addiction to attention deficit that still makes Possessed By Fire nigh on impossible to resist.
A legendary cult item, Exumer’s debut is one outrageously ornate thrash album that will continue to attract new fans, its schizoid attitude and countless charms are just too damn addictable!
Razor – Malicious Intent
Those damn Canadians were fuckin’ unstoppable in ’86!
Razor were hellish brutality and raw thrashing power personified and while Malicious Intent may be a few steps down from the speed-freak genuis of the previous years Evil Invaders, it’s still a barrage of fast and furious thrashing fun.
Sometimes sloppy, sometimes too primitive for it’s own good but always, always attention grabbing, Razor’s limitations – Dave Carlo’s riffing aside – may be all too obvious but that’s where Razor excelled; pure balls-to-the-wall fury welded to riff after riff after lacerating riff.
“Turn it up, LOUDER!”