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Ritual, a long lost band from the 90's. It's a shame that they never got around as much as they should have. Luckily, I was able to, over the past few years, collect all of Ritual's CDs, and this one is probably my favorite of them all. Soldiers Under Satan's Command was a turning point in the band's history, as one of the original members, Ian, didn't perform on this album, and the music gained strong thrash influences, though this is the only album Ian didn't perform on and this would be the last album from the band for 13 years.
Soldiers Under Satan's Command starts off sounding like some good ol' thrash and from there on it just gets better and better. Tracks like 'Steamroller' and 'Death Machine' (my personal favorites) give the listener the perfect mixture of black and thrash. In no way does this album compare to 'The Summoning,' the bands debut, since this album is definitely heavier and more thrash-y, but in ways it is similar to Demonic Winter Metal. The production is pretty good for this album, and it helps give off the perfect atmosphere with the black/thrash mix.
This album was definitely not written in a day, and it's pretty apparent. The reason I say this is because this isn't just cheap power chords and tremolo picking. Instead of just being a cheap 'yeah, we're still around' album, it was well thought out and well written. Definitely worth the money I spent on it. The vocals are similar to the first two albums, even though Ian isn't singing on this album. The drums on this album aren't programmed, which is a bonus, but you can also notice some mistakes every once in a while, which isn't a big deal since they are small and you'd only hear them if you were really listening for them. There is only a touch of keyboards on this album, unlike Ritual's previous records. This album is definitely the best mixture of black and thrash I've ever heard.
All in all, I give this album a 100 because it was well written, well performed and it just kicks ass. It wasn't written for the prestige of putting out another album. If you're able to pick this up, I highly recommend it, as its a great album and I've not seen many copies for sale anywhere.