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New Zealand, a land of natural beauty, British background, and Power Thrash?? Well that’s what we are getting from the band Razorwyre on their debut ep, “Coming Out.” 5 songs , clocking in at 23 minutes, of pure classic thrash madness.
“Coming Out” kicks off with the track “Party of Five.” This is easily one of the best and strongest tracks off the ep. It features those classic more melodic, yet still aggressive, power metalish vocals mixed along with fantastic drumming, chugging guitars and they even throw in some great guitar harmonizing. The second song shows a humor side to the band with the song, “Fuck You Tonight.” Im sure you can figure out what it’s about. We then get to hear the song “Operation Market Garden.” The opening riff will instantly get you hooked, and Zane’s vocal performance here is very good, using a mix of great melody, falsetto, but yet still finding the room to have some of that classic thrash harshness. “Suspiria” is the fourth song off “Coming Out” and has one of my favorite parts of the entire ep; at about half way through the song the music cuts out and you hear one of the most epic high screams you’ll ever hear, incredible. The ep is then closed out with the longest song, “Battleshark.” This was my favorite track off the album, perfect riffs, perfect vocals, perfect harmonies, perfect everything. This song was executed masterfully.
I simply loved the artwork of “Coming Out.” Simple yet it attracts me and wants me to listen to it. And the Razorwyre’s logo is one of my favorite logos of all time, it just makes you go “this band looks like they are going to rock all day and all fucking night, I need this cd.”
Razorwyre’s “Coming Out” is masterful debut ep from this young New Zealand band. They mix elements of thrash, speed, power, and traditional metal to make a great sound that is sure to turn more than a handful of heads. This is an essential cd everyone must get for their collection, and you will love it. Great work guys!!!
Steel & Fire Records
With a band name like Gaywyre, it certainly is hard to take them seriously, even before listening to the music. Fortunately, the band decided to change their name in 2010 to Razorwyre, seemingly to display the shift towards a more serious and professional image to suit their music. Coming Out is the debut EP released under the Gaywyre banner, and was re-issued after the name change to Razorwyre.
Without wasting any time at all, the band opens with Party of Five, with a intense bass riff backed by double bass pedalled drums, before vocalist Z Chylde belts out a high-pitched wail, slightly reminiscent of Helloween's Michael Kiske. The music sounds like old school heavy metal, fed with a dose of adrenaline and a mad rush to the finish line. While Chylde's vocals are pleasant, at the high pitched wails they seem slightly weak (after all, how many can claim to be the air-raid siren that such vocalists as Bruce Dickinson is?), without the force and power of other power metal vocalists. This is not to say that he is without talent though, as there are times when his vocals shine such as on the intro of Suspiria, though the excessive use of such screams and wails tend to get irritating after awhile. The riffs of guitarists Chris and James at times remind listeners of bands such as Iron Maiden, complete with the melodic guitar solos, such as on Party of Five, with the harmonised guitars and vocals layered on top of each other towards the end of the song.
The songs are not without variety as well, as evident from the punk-ish Fuck You Tonight, with vocalist Chylde spitting out his vocal lines as though he were performing in a punk band, with raw aggression and anger, before breaking into their usual heavy/power metal fare, a nice hybrid of the heavy metal and punk genres, complete with the fist-pumping chorus (Tonight, tonight I'm gonna fuck you!). Operation Market Garden includes sound effects such as gunfire and explosions in the background to create tension in the music, though it could get slightly excessive especially towards the end of the song. The band takes a slight slowdown on Battleshark, replacing the speed attack with one with increased heaviness and intensity. In this instance, Chylde's vocals are fitting with the gruff and aggressive voice and could have been one hell of a ride if not for the unnecessary screams at the background.
The one thing that particularly stood out were the guitar solos, while not particularly extremely fast, had a nice melodious touch to them, complete with a nice guitar tone to match, proving that speed is not the only vital aspect to a good song or a guitar solo.
I have to say I really dig this EP. There is a load of bands playing old school 80's metal at the minute, and Razorwyre can count themselves among that crowd. However I do think these guys are a cut above the average and while they aren't too original, their brand of thrashing 80's metal went down as a treat with me. This is no frills, no bullshit pure unadulterated heavy fucking metal, played with balls and oozing with testosterone.
They were originally called Gaywyre and with the combination of that name and the album cover (which admittedly I find highly amusing), you could be fooled into thinking the band were some sort of joke, so I'm glad they made the name change. The tracks shown on Coming Out were made for the live environment, and it's not hard to imagine how much ass these guys would kick live. Tracks such as the album opener "Party of Five" and "Operation Market Garden" are fine examples of their sound with plenty of Maiden guitar harmonies, face-melting leads and fist-pumping riffs. "Fuck You Tonight" despite being quite goofy is one of the finer tracks here, with some belting riffs and standing as one of the more thrashing tracks on the EP. I think this track in particular would be immensely fun live with an easy to sing along yet ridiculous chorus that begs for a beer in one hand and a fist in the air. What is maybe the finest track, "Battleshark," is the longest at just over six minutes, and is a bona fide riff fest that demands your head to bang.
There are no bad points on Coming Out, maybe the vocals of "Z Child" could be a sore point for some, with his falsetto leaving a little to be desired. However this adds to the charm more than anything, his mid-range is good and his delivery can be quite thrash metal which certainly adds to the experience rather than detract. Fans of good old fashioned metal should get their hands on this, crack open a cold one and turn it up to 11. Recommended.
Originally written for www.metalcrypt.com
Metal, in its basic form, is a young man's business. The young, virile and beautiful men in their tight jeans, with their wildly flowing manes of hair and sweaty bodies reeking of testosterone, attacking the audience with a furious assault of raging metal, combined with the intimacy of a live gig in a small, dark club, can be an almost sexual experience. That raunchy characteristic found its strongest and most primitive manifestation in the metal of the 80s, beating the hell out of today's bi/asexual metalcore acts, and narrowly avoiding the sodomite excesses of glam. Thrash, the subgenre that followed, had a different character, and perhaps sacrificed the throbbing sexuality on the altar of beer-fueled violence, and the rest of the metal history ever since has been an unavoidable slide downwards on the sexual scale.
But worry not, you procreationally driven metal person! Gaywyre is here, with their true-to-its-roots 80s-styled metal, and it's definitely time to hide your daughters! These fellows have found the original, throbbing, exposed masculinity of their role models, and put it to good use. I shall not let the fruits of my loins out without a heavily armed chaperone if these guys are in town, lest the lewd armadillos in their pants get their wicked ways!
The cover art of the EP already shows what is on the merciless minds of the these metal males: a closet, its door bulging and bending in front of their forceful thrusts, is about to give way and release the furious speed metal onslaught, and the target audience is cowering in fear of what they know is unavoidable. No one in their right mind would ever wish such a scene in his own bedroom, but who ever said that metal fans were sane?!?
Gaywyre's music is 80s styled speed metal, pure in its speedy drive and honest in its manly meat mincing themes. The first track, "Party of Five", is something the great masters in tight spandex, Iron Maiden, would not be ashamed to claim as their own tune. The second song, "Fuck You Tonight", slams a huge meaty statement on the table, and perhaps says a few obvious things a tad too directly for comfort. "Operation Market Garden" digs out the heavy guns, retelling the story of the most daring enterprises of the whole WWII, a daring thrust to the Germans' rear, and the adrenaline-drenched mano a mano fighting in Arnhem and various other places in 1944. "Suspiria" pays homage to the great Dario Argento and his bloody films, and "Battleshark" ponders upon sharks, the great and vicious shuttles of meat mercilessly hunting for innocent flesh to devour in the great oceans of the world. The themes are metal, the music is mercilessly good and faithful to the original stylings. There are no hidden meanings, no allegories, just stories and statements to be taken at face values.
It must be said that the band, while perhaps unoriginal and traditional in the grandest sense, plows a fertile ground on Coming Out. The market for retro metal may be saturated for the time being, and there is a danger that their plowing turns to arduous uphill gardening, and that the towering obstacles in their way to commercial success prevent them from reaching their destiny, but since the retro scene is mostly focused on thrash, their different and unprejudiced approach may well turn to a satisfying fulfillment. These guys would be metal enough to turn an ABBA song into a metal masterpiece, no doubt about it, and their unshrouded honesty should be rewarded. The group is an oiled man-machine, from the first chord on the fretboard to the final testicle-tickling falsetto.
This EP is seriously good. Nothing groundbreaking, but on the other hand, nothing anachronistic; Coming Out is pure 80s worship in the best sense of 80s worship, and doesn't include any modern stylings. This little piece of art is worth your time and money, and a follow-up is something to look forward to.
The one thing that really bugs me about this band is something I'd blame on the New Zealand's elementary school system: the silly typo in the band's name. I mean, come on! "Gaywyre"? That makes the band sound like something totally different... maybe a frolickingly joyoys telegram full of good news, perhaps? A very happy electric cable? No, the correct way to spell the word is "guy-wire", and for those unfamiliar with construction technology, that means a wire that keeps a mast upright. Some of the mightiest structures man has ever managed to erect are supported by them, majestically remaining stiff in the face of elements due to their faithful support instead of folding into flaccid piles. A correction is in order, I say.
This is a mighty, manly piece of work. You go, boys! But where can they go after such a magnificient debut? Inzane!