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A black/speed classic! - 90%

Pratl1971, November 24th, 2009

Try to imagine a band that sounds as if they stepped right out of 1980s black/thrash oblivion. Now try to add to that the fact that they don't sound dated or typical (at least not by the current standard) and you've got Gumo Maniacs, a speed/trash/black metal band from the bowels of Germany.

The obvious comparisons to Slayer, Death SS and Hobbs' Angel of Death aside, Gumo Maniacs is a truly inspired trio that took pages directly from the book of Hell-spawn metal music and captured that raw, hellish 80s sound that I have missed so severely. The CD is called "Priest of Lucifer," which seems to carry with it a typical rolling of the eyes since every damn band on earth seems to be possessed by the Norwegian black metal sound (and doing it badly I might add - the originals are the true pioneers of that sound, leave it alone!). As I said, this CD has the early speedy Slayer elements mixed with some of the more obscure bands from the 80s like Massacre, Possessed, early Death Angel, Sodom, Kreator and a host of other worthy bands. While the band has speed elements that are undeniable, they also have a good old-school groove to certain tracks that changes up the tempo nicely when you least expect it. It's easy to see where these guys get their inspiration, and it's quite the book of merit to gather from, that's for sure. Some bands, like the mighty Venom, get the concept and work with what limited resources they have or had to create something magical that stands the test of time. Gumo Maniacs combined elements of the best of the best and created...this!

The album is a relentless assault on virgin and harlot ears, giving newbies a real look at the wonderful metal world we had long before rap-rock and "power" metal with the silly Hammerfall-esque sound tainted our history with watered-down sap passing off as real heavy metal. There is no reinvention of the wheel here, but the songs are catchy, the riffs are solid and focused and the vocals are legible, something severely lacking in the post-Mayhem black metal realm. On top of that, the production is clean and precise, retaining just a hint of the old-school feel while applying some of the finer points of modern-day mixing. Song titles include "Invert the Cross," "Kill Again Tonight," "Ashes to Ashes," "Priest of Lucifer," and "Thor." I highly recommend this CD to anyone with a true understanding and interest in the history of speed and black metal music that has absolutely nothing to do with Norway's 15th century churches being burned or band members killing each other for monies owed or power. This is as in-your-face heavy metal as it gets.