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Absolutely Amazing! KILLER Thrash! - 100%

Desiple_of_The_Ice25, July 3rd, 2007

It's about time that I found some Stygian. I first heard of these guys through an ALL time favorite band, Wrath, thanks to their album that still moves me to this day, Nothing To Fear. It was said that the lead singer, Gary Golwitzer was kicked out of the band for composing material that the rest of the band Wrath wasn't looking for in a vocalist. After, he came to join (or form) Stygian, and that he completely changed his vocal style. They were labled as "Thrash Masters", yet for some reason, were also called Power Metal.

After searching long and hard for this album, I finally found it. Before I knew it, I was REALLY pleased with what I heard. I wasn't expecting thrash this amazing. These guys personally I think SHOULD be more well known than they already are. Being a big fan of Gary Goltwitzer, I paid lots of attention to his vocal style on this album. In my perspective, if he would have sang like this in Wrath, they would have been far more known because not to say his voice is better on this, it really is different from his former work of Wrath. Gary changed his voice from a high pitched pterodactyl to an angry almost Paul Baloff versus Chuck Billy. It's really just more to stomach and easier to handle than before.

The riffs on this album are absolutely awesome. It was very clever what Stygian's guitarists did, because there were some songs that had some very technical/melodic-ish riffs, as well as there were very Typical thrash riffs played in a more technical sense. Just listen to Behind Death's Door and you'll get what I mean.

As for the drums and the bass, as usual for the bass anyway, well produced, but it's the bass, there's not a whole lot to say about the bass in my opinion. The drums are without a doubt VERY well done, and heavy. For their time they could have really gotten big for the drums.

Really, all the songs on this album are very well done and have a little bit of significance on their own. Planetary is a GREAT introduction to the album; it's heavy, thrashy, and all in all, a great song to begin with. It has some GREAT drums, and the riffs are awesome. Planetary Destruction is organized and planned out well.

Behind Death's Door is pretty good, and DOES add to the significance of the album, but that's really about it. Gary's vocals kind of gotten a little bit been-there-done-that, and you really just heard Planetary Destruction over again, but different.

Cremation is fun, and sounds A LOT like an Iced Earth song with the galloping, but much better than Iced Earth, which is really hard for me to admit. The riffs are very simple, yet technical making it sound very original and unique which gives Stygian a very signature style for their thrash.

Catastrophic Deed is really a simple song, but the vocal tracks, and progression make it a song that you would really love to listen to live if you saw them at a show. Maybe not one of the greatest, but like was said, adds to the significance of the album. It's a keeper. Heavy, and thrash all the way.

Needful Things is a ballad we have all heard before if you dig Bay Area Thrash. Just listen to The Ballad by Testament and you pretty much have this, but yet, this is more static. It pretty much is taking a typical thrash ballad and Stygian-ing it. Though for some reason, as it may not be the best song, in terms of progression because it is VERY repetitive, I can't stop listening to it. The 12 string acoustic riffs are very well done, and Gary sounds JUST like Chuck Billy. If you are looking for a decent (at the least) thrash metal ballad, this is DEFINATELY one to listen to, but it's all VERY familiar if not a little too familiar.

Fall From Grace I figure has some great drum work, and some clever, yet simple riffs. The lead work is friggin amazing on this one, but also, on this entire album. You ask me can lead work help to save a song? YES it can, it helped save this one thanks to the intro. I like this quite a bit actually.

Deadly Psychic Evil starts off with 12 string acoustic eery-ish melody. It started off a little bit under produced which is really too bad because this song is awesome. Though, once the song gets going, you forget about it being under produced at the beginning. This one is also a keeper, like the rest of them really.

Environmental Suicide is totally a fun and cool song. It's a short instrumental, giving us some GREAT riffs, and killer lead work. What is too bad that I might say is that it is a little short, because there could have been so much more yet, at the same time, I am very satisfied with it's length, or lack thereof in this case. Nice fun tune.

Preacher and The Politician has some AWESOME challenging riffs that is really quite surprising that have never been done before because they are very catchy riffs. I am SO pleased with this piece, because it has some nice melodies/harmonies, help adding to the significance of course, with it's magical riffs. Definitely one of the best.

The Switch is the longest number on here. It has to be ONE of the best songs by far which you can tell these guys put A LOT of hard work into. One of the funniest concepts that I grin at is that there are times where Gary seems to sound like Kurt Grayson (the other singer of the third album, Insane Society by Wrath). This is definitely the most progressive of songs, and is without a doubt the perfect track to end this with. I think that Gary might have gotten some lessons on his vocals because they are far more improved. Every minute or even less than that, they progress to something completely different in the time signature. This is an honestly dynamic keeper concluding this amazing album.

Stygian really have something amazing here. Yeah sure, they released it a little late for the thrash genre, but I honestly think these guys have something that is so great that their overdue stature means NOTHING.

Bottom-line: DEFINATELY a classic. I URGE all of you Thrash lovers and metal heads to check this one out.