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Searching new horizons! - 90%

Thorgrim666, April 3rd, 2012

Here we get a little heavier and enter the realm of thrash metal, although this time it makes sense as this was the first and only album released by this British thrashers with Mr. Steve Grimmett (Grim Reaper, Chateaux, Lionsheart). Over the years this album has been despised by some Onslaught fans due to its more commercial edge compared with what could be heard in "Power From Hell" and "The Force", but I've never really understood why. Yes, some of the violence is gone, but hell, this one is also impressive. I don't know if it's better than its predecessor, but it surely surpasses the music from the debut, and does more commercial mean worse? Usually that's the way it is, but sometimes this also comes with an increase in quality, compositional abilities, and overall sound. That's the case with Onslaught's third release and last before their initial split.

"In Search of Sanity" (exquisitely produced by Stefan Galfas) places the band among some of the more refined speed/thrash metal bands of their time such as Testament, Annihilator, and especially Metal Church and mid '80s Metallica (the production sounds very similar to Flemming Rasmussen's works with the four from San Francisco); lengthy, fast, and sometimes quite melodic or even progressive speed/thrash metal songs with a perfect mix between the really hard guitar riffs and Steve Grimmett's amazing voice. It's quite understandable why some of the hardcore thrashers never swallowed the crystalline sound of "In Search Of Sanity" and Grimmett's melodic vocals, but this album should have taken the band to a wider audience that never became aware of Onslaught's activities. Quite a shame, but I think that we should blame London Recordings for this. Just one year after the release, Steve left the band, being replaced by Tony O'Hora, but their fate was already written.