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Lunatics and Psychos Form an Unholy Alliance - 88%

bayern, October 7th, 2017

Violent… maybe not; Omen, yeah, probably, depending on which lyrical side you cling towards. Cause if topics revolving around psychosis and insanity rock your boat then this outfit should be your surest pick. And those topics shouldn’t be such a surprise if the fan is aware of the band’s pedigree which leads straight to the legends Definition Sane, the original avant-garde black/death metal hybriders, bold advocates of the twisted cavernous, also quite pessimistic and depressive lyrics-wise, idea as earlier mapped by luminaries like Demilich, to give one more popular example; now reformed.

The style here has nothing to do with black or death metal, though, but is quite finely executed retro technical thrash. Truth be told, there were vestiges of death metal on the guys’ first demos, but by the time the full-length debut hit those were almost gone. That “infernal express” was a pretty intense affair the band still feeling nostalgic towards their more brutal roots by bashing with vigour and enthusiasm, only casually hinting at more intricate ways of expression. The latter fully materialized on the sophomore which was a wild spastic affair with quite a few influences laid out, reminding of similar notable exercises in technical/progressive thrash like Realm’s “Suiciety”, Terrahsphere’s “Third in Order from the Sun”, and Midas Touch’s “Presage of Disaster”.

All the raving “lunatics” and “psychos” have gathered together again for the construction of the album reviewed here, and the future is by all means bright with this delirious bunch in action regardless of the opener’s title (“No Future”, that is) this one a most hectic shredder opening hyper-active, elaborate vistas before the befuddled listener who will listen in wonder to the frenetic, nearly chaotic at times, changes of pace and the excellent high-strung vocals that nicely assist the good memorable chorus. More creative control is exercised on “Contradiction Mine” where the speedy “carnage” is blended with slower heavy stomps, but there’s no super-technicality lost anywhere including on the following “Initials of a Maniacs” which rages onward with no respites, creating dizzying headbanging atmosphere with brilliant virtuous leads flying around in a seemingly random fashion.

“Book of Lie” actually “lies” with impetuous gallops unleashed those recalling the 80’s speed metal movement with just a few more technical stops along the way, the bass taking central stage here and there. The title-track is an invigorating, less ordinary thrasher with a wider array of tempo-shifts, again not much technical show-off here; and “U666” is sustained in the same vein the band moshing valiantly, serving a cool atmospheric break mid-way. “Suffer Count: 52” is a larger-than-life composition the guys even bringing some of their death metal aggression of old to spice the active proceedings which reach a fever pitch, the riff density becoming quite big with the leads dexterously helping on the side with more screamy harmonics. Wrapping it on with “Panzer Combat”, a more linear, quite intense as well, speed/thrasher the band again exhibiting their marginally more immediate side as a finale.

There’s this youthful, shall I also add naïve, exuberance, a not very common phenomenon on the contemporary scene, and one that can also be traced all the way back to the debut, like the guys are high on some substance, and they can’t stop producing these bouncy fast-paced intricacies. I guess this runs in the country cause their compatriots Bestial Invasion, another notable provider of stylized technical thrash histrionics of recent years, create in a similar mode; a very interesting stance, intentional or not, that contrasts with these bands’ heightened musical proficiency. Hopefully the guys will be able to retain this particular element in the future, or at least until wisdom and experience take this precious “gift” away…

It’s not only “bestiality” and “lunacy” on the Ukrainian front, mind you; there are other talented thrash battalions… sorry, metallians (Reabilitator, Omniverse, etc.) who are doing their best to put their motherland more prominently on the metal map; and this “violent” batch here can surely be viewed as the leaders of this campaign.