Classic Thrash Albums:
Testament-The New Order My all time favorite album. Where do I even begin this one? From the brilliant shreddy opening of “Eerie Inhabitants” to the fade of “Musical Death (A Dirge)”, this album has it all. You want speed? Look no further than “Into the Pit”. Want a sick mosh riff? “Disciples of the Watch” can cover that for you. Songs from this album and it’s amazing predecessor, The Legacy, have become staples in the live set for a good reason. They hit hard, and they don’t stop. This was when, I feel, Testament really started to find themselves as more confident musicians. Alex Skolnick really stepped up his game on this album. His open soloing sections are nothing short of perfect, and you can really feel the emotion in the shred. Everything on this album is tight. They truly play as a unit on this album, even though they tracked everything separate. On Practice What You Preach, they actually recorded everything together, but they achieved that same feeling on this one. When you listen, you can picture them performing these pieces, all while running in a circle with your fist in the air.
Exodus- Pleasures of the Flesh Talk about another impressive sophomore release. They took everything they did on Bonded By Blood and kicked it up ten notches. The speed, the aggression, all of it. Zetro really brings something to the plate for Exodus. The way he mixes his melodic singing with harsh screaming is masterful. His dynamics really bring out the vocals on this album. I know it’s cool to say “Baloff was the only good Exodus singer.” Don’t fool yourself. Zetro RIPS on this album. And for me, this is where Holt and Hunolt truly became the “H Team.” The way those two play off of each others solos and harmonies is incredible. Their guitar tones compliment each other so well, yet you still know who is playing what. This is also where they started really perfecting that “playing two riffs at once things”, seen near the end of the title track. The variety between midtempos and speed is awesome. There is something for everybody on this album, and the pit is waiting for you.
Demolition Hammer-Epidemic of Violence Brutality. How else can you describe this album? You can tell what this album has done for the speed of Insinnerator. The playing on this album is top notch tight. Everybody is always on with each other. Vinny does the bass-snare change up perfectly, like how A.R.G does it in “Adoration of the Kings”, he does just as smoothly in “Human Dissection.” Steve’s vocals here are just mean. They bite over the music with a tone that jumps in and slaps you in the face. His pronunciation and accentuation is incredible over such fast thrash. A great thing about this album is how clear everything is. Guitars, bass, and drums (snare included) come through the sound with a razor blade sound, and you can make out every note and rhythm. At a high speed, this can be difficult, but never for the mighty Demolition Hammer. Brutal thrash at it’s best.
Slayer- Hell Awaits An evil masterpiece. Slayer’s creative level on this album is beautiful. When you hear the words “Welcome back”, and the intro of “Hell Awaits” kicks in, you know that you are in for a listening experience that will change your freakin’ life, dude. It is an incredibly dark album, from the reverb to the guitar tones and scream. Everything goes together perfectly to make this an evil listening experience. When Tom does that last scream in “Necrophiliac”, I still get goosebumps. “Haunting The Chapel” introduced us to Slayer’s signature sound, this is where they perfected it. Hanneman’s and King’s dissonant solos resonate throughout the tracks, and really help give character to the pieces. Dave Lombardo really becomes Dave Lombardo here. No more over dubbing cymbals and what not, here is straight, raw playing. That fill on “At Dawn They Sleep” is incredible. Even Tom shines on this album, with his little line in “At Dawn They Sleep”. This album was a total group effort in terms of playing. This album continues to influence us to this day (shit, all of these albums do), especially when we are in need for that darker sound we crave.
And by the way, while talking about albums, I guess I can let everyone know what is going on with Insinnerator. If you haven’t heard, we are now a 4-piece, as we have wonderfully added “Infernal” Robert to the group. He has brought us a dynamic that is making us sound really full, and has already contributed to the song writing that is unrelated to our planned concept album. So while we will be doing the concept album, we hope that in the latter half of this year, we can introduce some new material to our set, and maybe…JUST MAYBE…do another EP to help get Robert’s feet in the ice cold water. The four of us (that is so fun to say) have to work out the details, but do expect something in 2015. We hope not to disappoint. We love you, and thank you all for reading, and for Chad here at GTA for being incredibly patient with me taking so long to do this! Cheers, dude! You’re the best!
Cheers to you Christopher, and my apologies (to everyone, really) for taking so long to post this awesome feature! Be sure to check back next Monday for Part 2 of Christopher’s Moshing Monday feature!