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None too shabby - 70%

Metal_Mongrel, January 22nd, 2008

Well, what have we here? A brand new Thrash Metal band from Germany! What could this mean for us then? Another classic in the vein of our favourite Kreator, Sodom and Destruction; another throwaway Thrash-by-numbers piece, or a disc with new ideas and an original sound being put on the table? Only by listening to Thrash Notes will you truly know the answers, but read on so you may hopefully get an informed idea about what the answer is...

This is quite clearly heavy enough for headbanging Thrashing, with a fairly even mix of riffing styles going at all speeds, but generally hanging at the faster end of the spectrum. The singer has a kind of curious vocal style, generally a half-sung, half-shouted style with a distinct German twang (without becoming Klaus Meine style "ze Germans are koming!). Most of the vocals reminded me of Slayer's Crionics with an accent. Whilst most of the riffs are good enough, and go down well while you listen to them, few really seem to stick in the mind (at least after five listens on this end). Instead, it is the singer providing some catchy choruses that keep the album in mind and the riffs feeling good. Return To One and Breed Machine stand out the most in this regard, and I believe this to be Abandoned's forte. Catchy Thrash without descending into cheese or pop inclinations - just enough of it for you to tell them apart from the rest of the pack.

A very sparing use of solos also helps seperate Abandoned from other bands - it is nice to be able to get through an album without knowing the solo before you hear it ("well that's the second chorus gone, just a 30-second solo to get through before they repeat it again"). One leaf they could've done without borrowing is the St Anger snare sound though. It may just be a case of it hurting more with earphones, but seriously...put Holy Terror on at full volume on your discman/iPod/whatever, and make sure you have the cotton wool on hand to stop the blood...

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