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Formulaic - 41%

GuntherTheUndying, February 3rd, 2016

Drinking from a poisoned well does little in the way of good fortune. There happens not to be a caution sign posted above the water hole of thrash, unfortunately, which would explain why bands by the hundreds continue to stick their heads into the god-knows-what below and guzzle away. I don’t shy from the fact that I’m critical of newer thrash bands; most of the Slayer wannabees and Exodus clones do nothing to make themselves more than a retracing of trailblazing groups. Nuclear is from Chile and plays a Kreator-based style of thrash, and while style points stick them ahead of the pack by an inch, the reality of “Formula for Anarchy” sets them back a mile. Nuclear, despite its sharp teeth, has no real bite once this record runs its course; it turns out sucking down the noxious remains of thrash does a number on the ol’ choppers.

“Formula for Anarchy” has a go-for-the-throat style of Kreator worship that never takes its foot off the gas. The production is something of importance, as the modern pop to the instrumental balance and the lead guitar sound emulate the sound quality of Slayer’s “Christ Illusion,” which still stinks like butthole, by the way. The vocals have the same bite and attitude of Kreator’s Mille Petrozza, almost a direct copy of his style. Not necessarily a hindrance in the grand scheme of things, however; they are one of the album’s better moments. The problem “Formula for Anarchy” has is that it lacks any spark that would have lifted it beyond being just another thrash record. Take Kreator, add “Christ Illusion” sound quality, stir it up for thirty minutes—there’s your “Formula for Anarchy.”

Nuclear’s songs are often over and done within the span of two or three minutes, never making more than a drop. Their attempts to flesh out the songwriting on “Corporate Corruption” and “Killing Spree” are vapid, resulting in a poorly concealed chubby for modern Kreator with more tempos and parts that end up mirroring the irrelevancy of the less-detailed tracks. Nuclear, to their credit, is capable of starting a fire based on how aggressive and pissed off they sound, but the attitude is secondary to the triteness. Not a single riff, bit, or part manages to swim above the uniformity; beyond the diminutive nuances is a whole lot of nothing worth noting.

We’re left running through the motions despite Nuclear refusing to halt the deluge of thrash riffs and melting solos pouring out of every one of their holes. At the least I can say “Formula for Anarchy” opened the door for me to rediscover two things: “Christ Illusion,” and why I never listen to “Christ Illusion.” The more developed tracks fail to show establishment of authority, and the shorter tunes go in one ear and out the other. What we’re left with is “Christ Illusion” production smeared on Kreator worship. It’s as exciting as it sounds.

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