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1985 was unquestionably a great year for thrash. If 1986 was great for the most famous bands in this field, 1985 will be forever remembered for some of the most violent outputs in the history of this genre. Kreator, Sepultura, Slayer, Possessed and many others contributed to this and Sacrifice were the Canadian troop that fought for it too. Their Torment In Fire album is one of the most brutal and fast efforts in those years. It mixes perfectly the thrash metal to the primordial form of death metal that was growing release after release by several bands.
The songs are generally quite short and they point directly to the core of extremism. There’s no melody or will to slow down. We can also find some more canonical examples of speed/thrash metal too in a song like “Turn In Your Grave” but the up tempo parts are just blowing for power and intensity. The sounds are quite clear but extremely essential and you can hear the old style production very well. Nothing has been pumped in the studio and the volumes are simply those by the instruments. The band itself has inside an insane load of anger and madness.
The compositions sound extremely heavy and twisted especially for the schizophrenic vocals that sometimes reach such a high level of morbidity that can be considered quite ahead, especially for the sick screams. Obviously, in an album like this, you must completely forget about technique and precision. There are several imprecise parts but everything is a simple demonstration of anger and impact. “Homicidal Breath” is truly good during the fast restarts with solos, but a bit unclean when the mid tempo parts are the main important thing.
The power of the rhythmic guitars is unbelievable and during the palm muting riffage, it’s like being overwhelmed by truck at full speed. Sometimes the early Sepultura style is stronger and I dunno if they ever listened to them in those years, but the screams, the morbid atmosphere and the sounds are similar. The sequence “Possession”-“Decapitation”- “Beyond Death” is an unbelievable whiplash on the back for speed and pure anger, ending one of the most intense and violent albums of the 80s and maybe of the 90s.
The only complain I have is the form of the songs, that sometimes is a bit too childish but, considering the very young age of the members (17-18 years old), is more than an acceptable thing. True old school thrashers, beware the impact of Sacrifice!