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All Hell Breaks Loose marked a great comeback for one of the biggest bands in thrash metal. After having passed through lots of difficulties and problems, the Destruction true line-up was back together again and in 2001 Schmier and Mike are ready to show us their rage, power and strength once more. The Antichrist is the definitive confirm of a band that, since the reunion, is in perfect shape and has reacquired the power and the thrash metal style of the old days.
The year 2001 will be remembered also for other great comebacks in this filed, especially if we consider the German trio and this Antichrist is the Destruction’s one. The precedent album also displayed a new production for this band because the years have passed and now the methods of production are far different. Once again Destruction decided to get back to the Abyss studios to record this new effort and the result is just astonishing. On these tracks the power of the instruments is multiplied for ten in terms of volumes and distortion.
Lots of people say there’s something Swedish in the production too and I partially agree with them. The sounds are sharp, massive and bombastic, even more powerful than the ones on the previous album. “Days of Confusion” is a prelude to the massacre with “Thrash Till Death”. I’ve got a limited edition of this album with a wrong order of the songs and I must go through them in order to give you the right impact of the right version (mine was the one with a wrong colour on the slip case, it’s rare and I love it). By the way, the galloping riffs are again old school, nasty and powerful. The up tempo parts are invincible for speed and style.
The vocals by Schmier are always raspy with that childish, schizophrenic timbre that was the main characteristic in the past and still is now. “Nailed to the Cross” displays all its burden of anger towards the Christianity and its idols through ferocious vocals, massive up tempo parts and a catchy chorus. Schmier seems really pissed off with this religion and the band follows the same style on the instruments. The more melodic break by the middle is astounding and this song can be considered another gem in Destruction’s career. Actually, half of the songs here are truly modern classics by this band.
It’s impossible not to resist to another explosion of violence like “Dictators of Cruelties”. Even the more mid-paced parts are full of riffs. By the way, it’s my opinion that Mike has changed a bit its style on the guitars, playing more straight riffs and fewer scales I think. Anyway, his riffs are always nasty and with that production behind them, they are unmatchable. In a semi mid-paced song like “Bullets from Hell”, the real up tempo parts are blowing and there is a sort of Release From Agony worshipping will. “Strangulated Pride” is another explosion with always catchy and relentless riffs.
If “Meet your Destiny” is a bit less impulsive in terms of speed, it has a great riffs work and the bass drum lines are really unstoppable. “Creations of the Underworld” is made of brutal stop and go parts where the bass is more audible in all its metallic distortion and “Godfather of a Slander” is a return to canonical speed with schizophrenic riffs and a catchy chorus. The atmosphere is even gloomier on this track due to some distorted parts. “Let Your Mind Rot” is bit calmer to announce the drums intro of the violent “The Heretic” that once again brings Destruction the high levels of nastiness.
Coming to the end of my review, I can only say that this is one of the best albums by this band. It contains some classis and generally the songs are always high in terms of songwriting. The band is truly devastating and we can hear it. It’s like they needed a period of stop to charge the batteries again and return to high levels.