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The 1985 Kreator’s debut is a fucking brutal assault. The thrash influences are preponderant but we can find death ones also because the group seems really bad ass, pissed off with the rest of the world and the violence of execution is inhuman for the period. With the title track we can really taste the group’s essence, made of thousands guitars riffs, restless drumming and the screamed vocals by Mille.
It was so hard to do this kind of metal at the beginning of the 80s and they were surely the precursors of a new form, a new conception of extreme music. The pure thrash metal was the main genre at the time but this goes beyond, for sure. “Total Death” has in it riffs directly taken from Destruction’s “Mad Butcher” and Exodus’ “Strike Of The Beast” during the refrain. Funny! Here the vocals are on the borderline between thrash and black! Unbelievable.
The mid paced parts finally come from the third track, “Storm Of The Beast” with a great galloping guitars work, more various than in the previous tracks. This song is definitely more “pure thrash” but as you know, also the production contributes in creating a gloomier sound that sometimes can be categorized as death metal. The solos are very similar in these songs but terribly good without being technical or melodic. They can be seen as simple free rein in pure Slayer style with shredded parts.
“Tormentor” is a piece of death/thrash history that still nowadays is played in every single gig by Mille and Co. The main riff is really old school thrash. The sequence “Son Of Evil”- “Flag of Hate” really takes your breath away reducing you to ashes. I thank a lot the mid paced beginning to “Cry War” because I was almost exhausted…I longed for peace and quite but the punkish, Sodom-inspired refrain pushed another nail in my already bleeding head.
To say nothing of the speed/thrash blast of “Bonebraker” and “Living Fear”…pure madness. This is where groups like Sepultura, Death, Obituary and many, many others took inspiration to set up their music. This is a piece of history and the true beginning of the mythical, worldwide known GERMAN THRASH.