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The Second Time Around - 44%

DawnoftheShred, October 28th, 2008

In 1999, Anthrax had gone to shit. M.O.D. wasn’t doing shit. Nuclear Assault was dead. Therefore an S.O.D. reunion was inevitable. But after a decade of inactivity was it logical?

I would argue that it wasn’t. As an old saying goes, a joke is never as funny the second time around and after the release of this album, I’m sure only S.O.D. themselves were laughing. It seems that at some point between 1985 and 1999, the band had been bitten by the Pantera bug that had infected most every other thrash band since the early 90’s. Billy Milano’s vocals echo Phil Anselmo as he tries to make his voice as low and br00tal as possible. Scotty’s riffs aren’t too far removed than some of that 90’s Anthrax garbage and Dan Lilker is right there with him. Charlie Benante still dominates his instrument but basically the music sucks and the humor is gone. Occasionally I found myself chuckling at the lyrical antics (“Celtic Frosted Flakes” and “Monkeys Rule”) and every so often I found myself headbanging frantically as if this was Speak English or Die, but these moments are brief and isolated. The comically racist, insensitive, politically incorrect, super thrash that S.O.D. had laid down back in the 80’s just couldn’t be resurrected without sounding stale.

There’s a couple legit thrashy tunes on here (including a rendition of M.O.D’s “Aren’t You Hungry”), but most of this is aggro bullshit, not to mention about half a dozen short throwaway tracks. In fact, most of these tracks are throwaways; download the handful of crossover-sounding songs and be done with this.

Highlights: “Kill The Assholes,” “Monkeys Rule,” “Shenanigans”