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You will grind beneath Lich King's wheel of Thrash - 86%

ShadeOfDarkness, August 3rd, 2010

Lich King is a new thrash act from the US. They're first two albums were kind of wannabe old school thrash. Even though they tried to be as thrash as possible, with their Nuclear Assault, Vio-Lence and Exodus influenced songs, I was entertained enough. However, this album marks a new era of Lich King!

The album opens with an intro track. First time I heard this track, I got really excited for what I had in store. And so, when the intro was over, and Act Of War's devastating riffs started going, I immediately started headbanging to it! That song was a really amazing "80's" sounding thrasher. This song is definitely one of the best on the album!

After Act Of War was finished beating the hell out of my head, Ed-209 came, and I sat back, and relaxed through the whole song. It was groovy and good! We're then struck by A Storm Of Swords, Waste and Terror Consumes, which are all good thrashers! I especially enjoyed A Storm Of Swords for it's groovy to thrashy parts. One is bound to have more success with a song if it starts up being groovy, and suddenly a BOOM! That is what I love about thrash metal!

Well, enough about how awesome each and every song is. I assume you want to know more about how the music sounds, and of course the production. This album varies a lot. It ain't just thrasher after thrasher, which is a good thing in my opinion. I get tired if an album only has tracks that all goes in the same rhytm, the same riff and vocals. Lich King has showed that they're intelligence was beyond what we all thought they had. They have written some unique riffs, and Tom's vocals are truly something special. Sometimes he screams out his lounges, sometimes he goes for a half death metal grunt, and of course the high pitched falsetto thingy that we can all hear is Tom Araya inspired. He delievers what one would expect of a good thrash band.

The guitars are also varying from track to track. From the old school style of Act Of War, A Storm Of Swords and Lich King III, to the dark tone of Grindwheel and (sometimes) Behaver. All in all, a good variety of riffs and solos that fits into every song on here.

The production has really taken a lot of steps forward. Remember the extremely low volume on Toxic Zombie Onslaught? That is gone now. Remember the annoying hiss on Necromantic Maelstorm? That is gone as well. Now, they are aiming for a somewhat clean sound, while still keeping the old school feel to it. This step forward was very entertaining, and made it a lot easier to listen to the whole album without taking a break to clean your ears. So if you want to listen to this, then don't just listen to one song and quit. Listen to the whole album in one piece. Then you can listen to the songs you liked the most. That's how I enjoyed the full album as much as I do!

Question: Should I get this album?
Answer: Definitely! Especially if you are a thrasher! This album shows that thrash is still alive, and maybe more than ever! So don't listen to the guys that are still wining "Dude it's not the 80's anymore! Modern thrash sucks!" and related. Go buy this album, cause it will entertain you no matter what!

Lich King kickstart their thrashhearts - 70%

morbert, July 15th, 2010

Well, this is an unexpected turn of events. A surprise even. On the other hand, a third album always has something magical in thrash metal land. Lich King have obviously made a choice and successfully I might add. Gone are the generic winks at black metal, cartoon lyrics, indecisive vocals and horrible homemade Nintendo production. Lich King have grown up and now want to play with the big boys of retro thrash.

They still have their humour, since most of their lyrics are almost too cliché to be true but the emphasis isn’t on them anymore. It’s all about the music this time. The lyrical content is woven into the music, often even disappearing. The group focusses much more on the songs and entire atmosphere of the album. With the exception of ‘ED-209’ of course but that song is pretty great and catchy.

World Gone Dead shows us how Lich King are actually inspired by Slayer (not just the cover but many, many riffs) and thrown in some Bay Area late eighties slow paced mosh riffs and remarkably nice leads. And on ‘Behaver’ they actually sound as if they want to take the niche Dekapitator left behind right after The Storm Before the Calm. On the Slayer cover ‘Aggressive Perfector’ Lich King truly show how good they can actually play. Even the vocals are remarkably close to the original and very enjoyable.

So all in all Lich King have come up with the perfect album all of sudden now? Not quite. The biggest setback on WgD is that not all riffs and melodies are equally good. Whereas ‘Act Of War’ is pretty much perfect from start to finish, the heavily CelticFrost inspired doomthrash song ‘Grindwheel’ is only worth checking out for the sweet guitar harmony in the middle which gives a strong and very enjoyable Master Of Puppets feeling.

Also the majority of riffs on ‘A Storm of Swords’ sound like Exodus rejects and the song doesn’t get interesting till after 4 minutes. Then there is a breakdown in ‘Terror Consumes’ which is just too damn metalcorish for my taste in thrash but fortunately a fast section with lead takes over. But still... It’s those details which prevent WgD from becoming the best surprise of the year sofar.

Toxik Holocaust remain stale, GamaBomb are going downhill fast, one wonders if FueledByFire and Violator can live up to expectations and also quite a few retro thrash acts lost their touch after one or two albums already but Lich King do the opposite and have released their best effort yet.

Highlights: Act of War, ED-209, Waste, Behaver, Aggressive Perfector

Lich King - World Gone Dead - 95%

Lacho_droogie, June 14th, 2010

Well Lich Kings new album was officially released today but I managed to get my hands on it from itunes several days earlier, even though I had already preordered it online. I just couldn't wait! What a great decision, this is a thrash masterpiece!

There are several things that separate this album from the previous two Lich King releases. The first of which is the production, which is a lot better on this album. The mixing is better, the bass is audible, the drums are clear, especially the kicks, the guitars are loud and defined, all of which combine to create a great sounding record!

As well as the change in production, the music is faster, louder and heavier than anything Lich King have released to date! Although there are a few traces of classic Lich King humour throughout the album the songs have taken on a new identity, moving away from humour and focusing more on classic Bay Area thrash. This is a welcome change, as bands can only go so far with the humour aspect before it becomes stale and overused.

The songwriting and musicianship on this album, although nothing absolutely mind blowing or revolutionary, is very good indeed. The songs are fast, heavy and defined, the vocals are loud and angry, the lyrics are violent and well written, the solos are fast, well structured and well placed and, last but definitely not least, the gang vocals are incredible! There are periods during this album, especially during the song 'Terror Consumes' where one cannot help but bang their head!

For all Bay Area thrash fans, whether they be into the new wave or old wave, this album will not disappoint! I have had this record for about 4 days now and it has already gotten about 6 or 7 listens, seeming to get better every time! Although every song is enjoyable in its own sense the stand out songs for me have to be 'Waste', 'Act of War', 'Terror Consumers' and 'Lich King III (World Gone Dead)". This is a breath of fresh air into the lungs of thrash metal, and i would recommend this to every thrash enthusiast out there!