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Sex, vodka & thrash metal - 95%

Metal_Thrasher90, June 21st, 2013

Wolf Spider had a dilemma in 1991: should they keep their majestic melodic sound from the last 2 superb albums or try something different and more violent? Well, the departure of Jacek Piotrowski forced them to choose the second option, because it must have been really impossible to find another singer with a magnificent melodic voice as Jacky back then, and most of Polish singers I heard never sounded very professional or stunning (Marek Łoza, Mariusz Sobiela, Irena Bol, etc.). So this time, the band decided to leave behind the previous musical path and take the opposite direction. Tomasz Zwierzchowski was the chosen vocalist for the new record and the lyrics as well got into completely different issues than ever before. As you can guess from the Jerzy Kurczak cover painting and the title of some tunes, Wolf Spider got horny and explicit, just like their pals Destroyers and Kat. I don’t really know what Polish thrashers put on their vodka, but it definitely turns them on, in fact this could have been almost a conceptual record about lust, depravity and vice!

“Keep melody away from us!”, that’s what the guys wanted on this record, forget about their glorious past and write more straight and raw thrash songs with violent riffs and scandalous verses. However, their sound is still technical, progressive and complex; the impressive instrumental passages are pure talent and virtuosism on “Verge Of Sanity”, “It’s Only Vodka” or “Homeless Children”, tracks plenty of skilled variations on the riffs and the tempo that only experienced professional musicians could attempt to play. The result is absolutely perfect and outstanding, specially guitars parts are immaculately executed and memorable, and their riffs become extremely brutal, lethal and hyperactive on “Mafia”, “Down The Drain” or “Terrorists”, which are terrifying lessons in total headbanging thrash. And when the speed increases, like on “Sex Maniacs”, “Sex Shop” or “Puppet”, then you have no other chance than break your neck and mosh like crazy. The terminal velocity on those songs is brilliant and totally controlled, we are not talking about a bunch of chaotic hardcore blast beats, this is pure art and the culmination of years of practice. All the elements on the tunes: the raging double-bass drum rhythms, the incredible tempo changes, the massive killer riffing and the shredding solos are executed with precision and talent. But not only speed can be found on these numbers, the handful of breaks on most of them let the band space to play long intrumental parts on which guitars synchronize as good as their admired Dave Murray and Adrian Smith, and their raw hooks, skilled pull-offs and several string techniques along with their dynamic pickin’ parts will impress and shock you immediately. There’s not a single weak spot or bad song in this pack, and it’s no suprise, after all this is Polish thrash so what did you expect?

These guys are something out of this world, I mean I was already completely amazed with their unforgettable first 3 long-plays, but with this one they reached even a higher level than before. Not only in the way the music is performed, the tough song-writing task is so easy for them, even seem to enjoy making it as complex and difficult as possible. I will never understand why Polish bands like this never achieved any success outside their frontiers. There’s a disappointment here though, the reason why I’m not giving this album the maximum rating is Zwierzchowski’s voice. The instrumental parts are supreme, I wish I could say the same about the vocals but Tomasz is most of the time out of tune, becoming weaker and weaker and more inconsistent and unlistenable on each word, unable to reach the notes. I don’t know how many auditions they did to find a proper replacement for Jacky, I just don’t want to imagine how awful must have been the other singers that didn’t get the job if Zwierzchowski was the best choice. Apart from that, I must highlight the splendid guitar work of both Dariusz Popowicz and Piotr Mańkowski, their fast fingers are insatiable and hungry for more and more riffs on the whole record and their creativity never seems to end. Drummer Tomasz Goehs made a fantastic performance as well, with no mistakes and going wild on the fasters moments of this extraordinary exhibition of technical thrash. Maciej Matuszak seems to be another frustrated guitarists relegated to play bass, although his skills and versatility to define the rhythm are effective. Another big difference from their previous stuff is the more notable crude backing vocals, which remind me of the powerful throats of Scott Ian and Frank Bello from the mid-80’s Anthrax sound. It’s clear Tomasz Dziubiński knows how to produce rightly, all intruments sound as loud as they should and strenghtful enough to make this thrash record unforgettable. What about the lyrics? Sex! Sex! Sex! Thrash and lust, always an amusing combination of pure fun and enjoyment as you can check here.

Sex, vodka and thrash metal, that’s what you will find and it won’t disappoint you. Nobody did it like Polish thrashers by that year, don’t forget it was 1991, the time when some infamous abysmal black album killed the subgenre turning it into commercial pop for the radio stations. But fortunately, Polish groups kept away from the popular fashion and trends to concentrate on their genuine roots and never sell out. It’s remarkable that these Eastern Europe bands stayed loyal to their original sound, even making it more raw, evil and aggressive while most of the famous thrash heroes were becoming more sophisticated, melodic and sweet. Sadly, the Poland solid scene would get affected by the lack of commercial success and the grunge fever of the decade and only the strong survived (Turbo, TSA and Kat, basically). Unfair, so unfair.