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Municipal Waste... what is there to say about them? This is how crossover is supposed to sound! Long after the glory days of SOD, DRI, Suicidal Tendencies, and MOD, Municipal Waste comes thrashing out of Virginia of all places. This album is like a damn time machine back to the mid 80s when thrash was all about partying and destroying. This, being a crossover release, is bound to have some hardcore punk influence, but trust me when I say it is minute. Songs like Unleash the Bastards or Terror Shark have a bit of a punk tinge to them, but songs like Deathripper and The Thrashin' of the Christ are metal to the bone, thusly negating any negativity one could attempt to dish out on account of the punk influence.
Vocalist Tony Foresta is pretty much the perfect vocalist for the style. His quick, frenzied shouts complement the intense thrashing lunacy of the music exquisitely. Exquisite may be a tad too sophisticated of a term to use to describe something as downright dirty and raunchy as Hazardous Mutation. But by that same respect, this actually has incredible production, all of the instruments are heard crystal clear, even the bass is prominent in the mix (check out the intro to Accelerated Vision), a rarity for metal records.
It can be kind of difficult to distinguish between some of the songs, but when songs like Black Ice are only 24 seconds long, that should be expected. These songs were written with one purpose in mind, to absolutely fucking obliterate everything. Foresta and Co. did not set out to make a thought provoking record, this is not meant to provoke any deep emotions other than intense fury and the desire to throw a kegger. The lyrics range from zombie hordes (Hazardous Mutation), classic 80s horror flicks (The Thing, the opening sample of Guilty of Being Tight), partying (Blood Drive, Bangover), and even religion (The Thrashin' of the Christ (also the best song title ever)).
Again, I can't really write a lengthy review on a record like this, but trust me when I say it is worth every penny to pick this up. This may not be as tailor made for a rager as the follow up, The Art of Partying, but this is, by and large, Municipal Waste's finest hour. The riffs are sharp and precise, the drums are demolishing, the bass is audible and adds to the heaviness a lot, and the vocals are perfect crossover yells.
The top tracks here are Deathripper, The Thrashin' of the Christ, The Thing, Guilty of Being Tight, Terror Shark, and Hazardous Mutation... but you really can't find a bad track here. If anything, Mind Eraser doesn't hold my interest as well as the other ones... at least not until the chorus, but now I'm just nitpicking. If you are paying very, VERY close attention to the musical aspect, you may notice that the music doesn't vary too horribly much, but the record is only about a half hour long, so it never overstays its welcome. Definitely blast this at your next party, it is sure to compliment all of the drunk buffoons in your basement quite nicely.