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Straight outta Noo Yawk City came Nuclear Assault, and they were on eof the meanest bands around at the time, for me. The New York crossover scene featured some throughly badass bands (Cro-Mags, Crumbsuckers, and the legendary S.O.D. and M.O.D.) and NA were among the elite in those circles. Aside from the absolutely terrible, tinny production (especially the guitars--what the hell was Carl Canedy smoking?), this album OWNS. It spent LOTS of time on my turntable back in the day and was the first album that got me improving my bass guitar technique as I furiously strove to keep up with Danny Lilker's skinny forearm of steel keeping those riffs anchored.
To the record proper; "Live Suffer Die" kicks it off in fine thrashing mania, straight ahead blazing riffs and Glenn Evans' staggeringly fast drumming, flowing right into "Sin", a crunchy mid paced number with some good soloing delivered with riveting intensity. The wailing feedback intro for "Cold Steel" rips into another fabulous riff anchored by yet more stellar drumming--Glenn Evans was one of the best and most underrated drummers of the 80s--and headbanging bliss! Man...those were the days! "Hang The Pope"...ok, a throwaway, but an amusing throwaway, since I hate the Vatican and all it stands for in the first place. "Stranded In Hell", "Brain Dead", "Betrayal", all are other outstanding tunes here on this album. The only thing I really didn't like about this band was that the soloing needed more character, they were a little faceless for my taste. And John Connolly's vocals are unique, to say the least, perhaps even an acquired taste. But nobody out there sounds like him at all, like another fave of mine, Csihar Attila.
NA never quite followed up the impact of this classic release (except maybe with the following EP, "The Plague"), unfortunately, but I was still a huge fan. And I still love this album dearly to this day. Urgently recommended for newbies wondering just what the hell the glory days of the 80s were alll about, this album is. Throw "The Plague" in there for good measure, while we're at it...