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BRUTAL as fuck - highly competent - 80%

UltraBoris, February 9th, 2003

For 1992, this is pretty fucking excellent. That was the year thrash pretty much dropped off the map... after Heathen and Horrorscope, we were stuck with just Stormrider and the Soviets, for all intents and purposes. Well, Demolition Hammer are a bit behind the times, and more power to them!!! Their answer to 1993, Time Bomb, would come in 1994 and suck the mighty suck. But, for now, they are ruling in a decent manner. The first two songs are competent, and then they make way for the rest of the album, which kicks it up another notch - it's as though the first two were recorded while they were sedated - then, we have a monster riff-o-rama come out of nowhere.

This is some pretty brutal thrash - initially, a bit limited in the riff-variety department, and then somewhere the lightbulb goes on, and the neck is snapped. We start with "Skull Fracturing Nightmare", which pretty much goes through two main riff styles - a really fast Raining-Blood style riff, combined with something a bit less fast, and a bit more vio-lent, if you get my drift. The vocals are pretty good - somehow, Aussies tend to make good thrash vocalists (see also: Mortal Sin). Then, a thrash break around 4.30 in to another monster of a riff that closes the song in a "Beneath the Remains" style. Very nice.

"Human Dissection" - the drums are a bit more in the foreground of the mix - a steady double-bass combines with a suffocating Devastation/Dark Angel guitar tone. Just about the same riff is milked for the next minute or so, before the song speeds up a bit, the drum pattern changes... there are about three or four different riff styles in this song. Not VERY different, like for example a "From the Past Comes the Storms", but nonetheless sufficiently so to maintain interest, especially given what is about to come next.

"Pyroclastic Annihilation" sounds almost like a different album in the tone - cleaner, less bassy, still pretty damn brutal, but not quite as heavy. Also, the riff construction is totally different... an overt thrash break at 1:58, and in general a whole lot more riff variety in this one than the last two songs. About five major riff changes, a total of 20-30 riffs. This is so far the highlight of the album. If you like "Beneath the Remains", you will definitely like this. Fast, interesting, THRAASHH!! Some pretty competent lead guitar helps as well.

Then "Envenomed" takes us to some Kreator worship - it's like these guys are giving thrash school, they tend to be covering all the bases, especially with the slightly slowed-down interval for a few seconds at around 1:17, which sounds very much like it could have been on Extreme Aggression or Terrible Certainty. The rest... bang, bang, BANG! Whiplash-inducing thrash mania.

"Carnivorous Obsession" is a bit heavier again - the production goes up and down on this one, seriously. It's still highly enjoyable - it's not like an Iced Earth album where we alternate between thrash and ballads... here, you get to choose if the brick comes from the side into your temple, or just down straight into your forehead. Pick one! Nice thrash break at 2:48. Again, if you like any of the 80s thrash staples, this will not be at all out of the question. This one actually gets slower as it goes on (except for the final riff set, which is a reprise of the beginning), with stuff close to the end consisting of some efficient-speed stuff derived from Kreator.

"Orgy of Destruction" is 51 seconds long and sounds like random riffs left over. Apparently they didn't know where they were going, so they stopped before they went to suck. Good decision.

Then, the title track - another blazingly fast number, from the Reign in Blood school of thought, especially with the slight slowing down, and then speeding up again, a la another track with the word Epidemic in it. Then, a variety of cool riffs mark the middle to the end of the song. Song structures are pretty free-form in that they sometimes revisit previous riffs, and sometimes not - there are no really overt "two verses, middle part, another verse" style songs.

"Omnivore" is another German-sounding track, harkening to old Kreator (Pleasure era) or even Destruction (Eternal Devastation), with a break coming at around 1:15 that is definitely of the Germanic style. The final riff set is a mix of that and more Slayer-styled riffs. Overall, another very excellent track. This album is probably not meant to be taken on a track-by-track basis, but rather as an album-long onslaught of brutality - sorta like a Coma of Souls or a Beneath the Remains.

Finally, we get to "Aborticide", which is pretty much the review before the final exam. First some "Pleasure to Kill" ideas, with a little bit of Postmortem thrown in. Finally, at around 1:32 in we get a most overt Sepultura-esque riff - this one harking back to the From the Past Comes the Storms days - this is THE riff of the entire album. 31 seconds of pure fucking headbanging mayhem. WHAM! WHAM! WHAM!!! Beavis is bleeding!!! The riffs after that are very excellent too, with a total monster coming in at around 2.49, carrying the song for the next minute or so... I hear a bit more Slayer, some more Kreator, even some Vio-lence. The riffs ate my homework.

Wholeheartedly recommended. Best tracks: the whole damn thing, from beginning to end.