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Weird Thrash - 55%

DanielG06, February 23rd, 2021

Soothsayer is one of the lesser known thrash acts I've come across, which usually means one of two things: they're an underrated goldmine who were just unlucky, or they are one of the almost infinite mediocre thrash bands who's music is the audio equivalent of watching paint dry. Soothsayer is an anomaly, as they don't really fit on either end of the spectrum. This band is super weird; not bad or annoying, but not weird in a unique or impressive way, either. Most of the riffs on this album are extremely fast, and have an unusual rhythm, which at times sounds cool but at other times just sounds out of time. Take the song "Dig", for example, about 2/3 of the way in, the tempo gets kicked up, but the delivery of the riffs sound super messy and almost completely ruin the flow. Some tracks, such as E.T. are just horrible, they play way too fast and end up sacrificing the substance of the song, but other tracks such as BuzzFly and 101 are slower and much more sonically adequate, Therefore, I think it's safe to say that this record is a mixed bag, as these sudden drops and spikes between steady gallops and awkwardly fast sections make the runtime a bit uneven, and it takes a while to adjust to the blistering speed of songs like Pimple Sprayer and Changes, the latter of which actually has numerous catchy riffs, so you know what I mean when I say the songs are fairly uneven. Despite the choppy and unpredictable structures, some of the songs just sound way too similar, almost blending together into one track.

The production is average, but it varies from song to song. Go Team Go and E.T. are virtually unlistenable, whereas the rest of the album sounds fine, in particular the first track, Free Violence, which is another example of the weird showcase of riffs on this record. Rock N' Roll Forever is an obnoxious, irritating outro that serves no purpose, and is essentially one annoying riff played for a minute. The vocals are meh, while the classic thrash sound is in full force as the vocalist sounds deranged and high-pitched (kind of) he has a certain level of craziness in his voice that reminds me of Cryptic Slaughter, although he doesn't pull it off as well. The drums are mental, the beats seem to be either fast and tight or fast and horrendously sloppy, it's also noticeable that the drummer uses way to many fills, looking back at Pimple Sprayer, he does maybe a fill every 2 bars, which is way too many, and nearly ruins the otherwise catchy riff.

I can't really recommend this album, it's very divisive and although it contains some strong musical ideas, none of the songs really catch me.

A very nice piece of Canadian thrash - 90%

Bublick, March 16th, 2011

Well, how many Canadian thrashers can name most of you? Annihilator, Voivod. Some will remember Infernal Majesty and Razor or Sacrifice. While most of Canadian bands won't be named: Slaughter, D.B.C., Aggression, Deathamin, Overthrow and many many others. One of those forgotten bands is Soothsayer.

The year was 1989. It was quite hard to write something really new and unusual in thrash metal. But was it really necessary to make a good album? No. And this album only confirms it.

As I said, there is absolutely nothing innovative here. But instead of it there are 38 minutes of very enjoyable punkish thrash metal, lots of headbanging riffs, amazing drumming, nice audible bass lines (that's not a common thing in thrash, is it?), quite good vocals and even an acoustic song!

Of course, this album is not perfect. I wish quality of sound would be better, despite it is no way horrible, just not really good. Also there are some really catchy riffs, but unfotunally most of solos are not rememberable at all. However, it practically doesn't make this album worse.

Have a Good Time is a nice piece of 80's thrash, that will never make you bored. If you have a chance to byu one - do it and you won't regret.

Highlights: Dig, 101, Together To Make A World

Oddball - 80%

Vim_Fuego, August 6th, 2004

Canada — the land of ice hockey, horse–riding policemen dressed in red, polar bears, and a highly underrated metal scene.

OK, so there are the obvious candidates, like Voivod, Annihilator and Devin Townsend, but what do you know of Soothsayer? Not a hell of a lot? Me either.

The band first came to Metal–dom's notice on the 1986 'Thrash Metal Attack!' compilation, with a short but crazed demo track. Three years later, 'Have A Good Time' came and went, with hardly a blip on the radar screen.

This band sound slightly insane; imagine the rhythm guitar from Slayer's 'South Of Heaven' played by Les Claypool from Primus (yes, I know he's a bass player…). Add to that one of those crazy, smelly guys who stands on a street corner shouting about God, but in French. Next, pretend Anthrax's rhythm section had little brothers who played ice hockey. Starting to get the picture? Utterly confused? It takes a few listens to understand, but is instantly addictive.

Perhaps the biggest thing counting against Soothsayer was their grasp of English. It's a little tenuous at the best of times, and utterly hilarious when they really fuck things up. On "Buzz Fly" for example, "Now my fly said I'm hungry, it can't eat pizza and Pepsi/Pet shop doesn't have the food, so I give it seven toast crumbs". The pet fly in that song was so depressed about the state of the world it committed suicide. Elsewhere, there is a tale of a pizza–faced teenager, his affliction caused by eating too much pizza, who sprays zit juice on people he doesn't like. There is a more serious side too. "101" is sung mainly in French, about retaining French language in the Canadian province of Quebec.

So where did Soothsayer go? Who knows, but I, for one, want more.