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Faceless - 33%

Felix 1666, April 7th, 2017
Written based on this version: 2008, CD, Century Media Records

Right from the beginning, let's be quite clear about this: "War Without End" does not belong to the most shitty albums of all times. (Some might say that this is logical, because Phil Anselmo was not involved.) Nevertheless, it is a ridiculous work. The sticker on my CD tray screams in huge letters that "the new age of thrash has begun". My dear fellows, I was desperately seeking, but here is nothing, absolutely nothing new. Warbringer's music is as generic as their stereotyped artwork. One listens to old school thrash - so far, so good - without an iota of exciting riffs. Am I too harsh? Yes, this might be the case. Yet the massive hype that was made by Century Media on the occasion of the release of "War Without End" makes it necessary to articulate a clear position.

Without delivering a personal note, Warbringer work with the usual Bay Area tools. Unfortunately, they do not know how to use them effectively. The five-piece presents songs that sound like a collection of fragments. Fast parts, slower segments, uninspired riff attacks, expressionless solo orgies, breaks, double bass and so on, but almost nothing catches my attention. The intelligently titled opener "Total War" demonstrates the dilemma and the vast majority follows its direction. Faceless tunes without an own individuality pass by like intangible wafts of mist. Warbringer have no knack for strong melodies and the tempo changes do not increase the dynamic of the songs. Their effect just falls flat. Horribly thin lines like the one which begins after 40 seconds of the sixth track worsen the situation. Okay, this is a debut, but at the same time, it's the product of loudmouthed blowhards. I have therefore no qualms about setting the bar relatively high.

The production appears ambivalent. On the one hand, it possesses a certain sharpness in view of its clear and transparent guitars. On the other hand, the bass guitar withers away. But the miserable destiny of the bass player is not the main problem. What is more serious is the fact that the mix does not have a soul or, to describe it differently, it fails to evoke any emotions. Of course, atmosphere does not belong to the key figures of thrash metal. However, it is no fun to listen to an album that displays technical skills exclusively. Where can I buy some compositional abilities for these surely ambitious yet limited dudes from California?

Due to whatever reason, this album reminds me of those thrash works which were released at the beginning of the nineties. In technical terms, they did not fall short of expectation, but the original thrash feeling was gone. Warbringer want to sound like the originators of the mid-eighties, but their music only builds a bridge to those formations of the second row who had the same intention without being able to reach their aim. If you feel the masochistic desire to waste time, this album can help you. Its only pretty good track "Combat Shock" is long in coming. A coherent chorus indicates that there is perhaps a latent potential, although one cannot forget the immense amount of inconsistencies that spoil the album. "Hype Without End" would have been a much more suitable name for this portion of ill-defined songs. Feel free to compare these tracks with classics such as "Creeping Death", "Take this Torch" or "Bestial Invasion" and decide for yourself whether a new era of thrash has begun.

Warbringer/War Without End - Review - 85%

Jordan Rosser13, May 29th, 2014

There's a lot of hype going around that advertises Warbringer as the new champion of thrash metal, after giving their debut album a listen I've come to my own personal conclusion about Warbringer.

This album is certainly thrash metal without compromise, it holds every aspect that was notable and visible in the 80's thrash giants, guitar harmonies, fast tempos, yelling vocals, etc. However, the more I listened to the record I noticed that Warbringer is simply playing new music with an age old formula. This album, this very concept of thrash metal, is very dated and unoriginal... And I wouldn't have it any other way.

This album is loaded with riffs reminiscent of Exodus, Slayer, and all the other acts we know and love. One of the standout performances on this record though is the drumming, it's got tons of fills, double bass drum mayhem, and some pretty nice patterns throughout. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same about the bass playing which typically follows the guitars to the point. I'm just happy that the production was very nice and that I could actually hear the bass. The solos on this record are nicely done but nothing unknown to the world of metal. They follow scale patterns pretty often but then again so does every solo to some extent.

My main problem with this record is the pacing and track placement. Sometimes the song doesn't feel like it's changed ("Systematic Genocide" to "Dread Command" specifically) and it just sounds and feels like the same song played twice. The vocals sound pretty good production wise but they aren't exactly special, I feel like Kevill isn't exactly showing his range. There's one falsetto scream in "Born of the Ruins" that earns a good nod but other than that it's the same type of yelling throughout.

All in all I'd say this album is a solid effort with good riffs, catchy choruses, and decent thrash songs loaded with energy and determination. It is well worth the listen and I think that although they may not be the 'champions' of thrash, but they are definitely pretty damn good.

Monotony without End - 69%

Brainded Binky, December 19th, 2013

In recent years, thrash metal has enjoyed an explosive revival, with bands such as Municipal Waste, Violator, Toxic Holocaust, and many others churning out high-energy albums and creating massive fan bases. For every good album there is, though, there are plenty of albums that don't even try to be as original and creative as some tend to be. They're the albums that aren't as appetizing to the listener, because chances are, he or she has heard that particular riff before. This is where Warbringer's "War without End" comes in.

The reason why this album doesn't get 100% from me is cos it suffers problems that befall many "retro thrash" albums, one of which being the constant use of the E-note rhythm. E-note rhythms are quite common in thrash metal, as there are many good songs that use this (e.g. "Bonded by Blood" by Exodus), but Warbringer uses this to the point where all of this songs on this album sound the same. Warbringer are good with the E-note rhythm, but can they come up with a riff that doesn't rely on it? It's like they're using it like a crutch. Well, Havok, another retro thrash band, constantly uses E-note rhythms, but at least their songs vary in terms of time signature, which brings me to my next point.

Another problem this album has is that most of the songs on here are at the same time signature. Yeah, it's true that you want to get your crowd to mosh like maniacs, but there are other time signatures in music (and particularly in thrash) that can get a circle pit going. It's another factor that contributes to the monotony of "War without End" and I can't seem to distinguish between "Systematic Genocide" and "Shoot to Kill"! Well, the intro to "At the Crack of Doom" is slow and churning, there's that, but much of the album just comes out as boring with that same time signature being used for every single song. Combine the same speedy time signature with an E-note rhythm riff, and presto! You've got a song on "War without End"!

One thing that does make this album unique is the sound effects that they use. It's nice to have a sound effect in a song, but when much of the songs on here have sound effects either at the beginning or at the end of the song, it can get somewhat irritating. Some examples of this are "Beneath the Waves" with the sound of a submarine, "Instruments of Torture" featuring the brief sound of a sharpening blade, and a few of their songs featuring explosion noises. I could have sworn, I heard that explosion noise in "Combat Shock" when I was playing "Battlefield 1942"! Guys the sound effects aren't going to make each song different and varying. You have to learn how to come up with more original riffs and use more than one time signature.

Though to be fair, this is the band's first full-length, and they still had much to learn when they released it, but I have a feeling that they released it too early in their career, cos they clearly had MUCH to learn about making thrash. "War without End" has many of the basic skills of thrash metal which could be way too easy for experienced thrashers to perform. This album is Warbringer's first effort, but not necessarily the best. Surely there could be some room for improvement later in there career (and I am sure they have).

Magnificent piece of thrash - 94%

Tallandir, May 6th, 2012

Hmmm.... I was thinking for very long time how to describe this marvelous album without using words "amazing", "astonishing" or "awesome". After many hours of listening to this album I found out that it is quite impossible. That album will devastate your ears, kick ass and punch your nose into your head. "War Without End" is one of best thrash metal albums of 21st Century. Possibly it shall be laso reckoned as one of the best metal albums ever.

First of all - it is not average product of so called "new wave of thrash metal". Tracks on this release aren't boring. Every one of them is exceptional. The album is full of catchy and thrashy riffs, choruses and solos. Tracks don't sound the same - you will not find here same themes reapeted to boredom, which is usual among all this new young thrash metal bands from all over the world. This is the proof that you can still make fresh songs in thrash metal, forfeiting hitting empty E string all the time. Furthermore, songs aren't written in common scheme "Verse - chorus - verse - chorus - bridge - solo - chorus - chorus", it's obvious that those guys have spent a lot of their time to master their compositions. Very good lyrics, shredding riffs passing directly into fast flaming solos, furious drums, tempo changes, great vocals... 100% pure metal. Another positive thing about Warbringer's songs on this album is that there is easy to sense many subtle influences of classic metal bands. Not only thrash metal but also traditional NWOBHM, death metal and even some early black metal.

Production quality is very high. Producer done excellent job. Guitars' distortion sounds very good, heavy enough, but not to escess. Drums fit perfectly. Sound of basses, toms and, first for all, snare, is excellent - nothing irritates here. Luckily also drummer came up to standard - he really knows how to drum in thrash metal style, and he is also very creative. Just see how many drum bridges are on this album! Aggressive harsh screaming vocals fulfill greatness of Warbringer's debut LP. Vocalist has awesome voice, a bit Petrozza-styled but not entirely. Fortunately John Kevill has his own charachteristic voice and he is not Petrozza's clone.

On this album it's easy to sense which metal bands were inspirations for Warbringer, but I honestly assure you - neither riff stealling or primitive mish-mashing styles have happened here. I recommend this album to every thrash metal fan - Warbringer is in strict lead of new thrash metal wave. Even if you don't fancy this recently appeared thrash metal trend you will notice potential and greatness of Warbringer's debut

Victory on the fields of metal - 75%

JamesIII, March 14th, 2010

The recent movement of "retro thrash" or "new age of thrash" is one that strikes me as bittersweet. As someone who first got into heavy metal around 2000, when the mainstream thought Slipknot was as heavy as they came, I never thought I'd see thrash return to the focus of the big labels. After nearly two decades in obscurity, the major leagues have discovered thrash again, thus making it a trend, which is never a positive element. While I admire and even enjoy more recent bands like Evile, Municipal Waste, and Blood Tsunami, there is much to be desired considering the first generation of this long lost genre consisted of Sepultura, Sodom, Kreator, Slayer and MegaDeth.

Luckily, now comes Warbringer. Warbringer will offer absolutely nothing new to the thrash enthuaist, but I hear more raw determination in this band than the majority of other retro thrashers out there. From the war torn screaming vocals to the cover art, which depicts a tank leading the legions of hell into combat, this band is definitely striking at the well of 1980's American style thrash metal. As you can probably guess, you'll be hearing plenty of Slayer and Exodus influences, among others.

Considering the influences I mentioned, its no surprise that many of these songs lack originality. That said, I can't really hold that against Warbringer since they make up for it in sheer determination, and none of their peers can wave the flag of originality, either. I can definitely hear some Exodus influence in "Systematic Genocide," "At the Crack of Doom" brings up some acoustic pieces, which was basically required of West Coast thrashers in the 80's. I hear definite Slayer influence running amok, which is never a bad thing in itself, and it allows "Instruments of Torture," among others, to be as ripping as they are. Considering the production quality really emphasizes the sense of raw charm present on 1980's thrash records, "War Without End" really drives the point home that this is a band in love with their idols.

I've heard alot of fans out there really beating down Warbringer, usually citing lack of originality as their primary reason for doing so. I totally admit there isn't anything for anyone seeking mind-expanding thrash metal that hits all the right numbers in originality. Then again, I'd honestly ask them to point out any newer thrash band who does offer original creativity. I have no problem with a band paying tribute to the giants of the past, so long as there are good songs, instead of the music merely riding the past. As far as that's concerned, I think "War Without End" really gives us that. It contains good songs that are loyal to a style of music established over twenty years ago. Unfortunately, it also presents us with some unfulfilling music. However, if you're interested in the retro thrash movement, this album or Blood Tsunami's "Grand Feast for Vultures" might be your best bets.

Very, very solid album. - 98%

suckmyassitsmells88, June 10th, 2009

Despite it's constant bashing by supposed "thrash elitists" (who in many cases ashamedly have soft-spots for terrible, terrible bands along the lines of The Haunted, Lamb Of God, Lazarus A.D, Evile, Machine Head etc, among other atrocities incorrectly labeled new school thrash) Warbringer's debut album War Without End is a very solid release from this new school band. When I bought this album and first began listening I was immediately taken in.

The riffs, some say the riffs and leads are copied and reused but I challenge these haters to find and compare riffs with these other elusive bands that are never named but are constantly referred to. In actuality the riffs are pretty simplistic, but this dosen't mean they are copied/melodic/groove orientated and/or shitty wannabee thrash riffing ala aforementioned bands, they are heavy, angry and in your face. The leads at times tend to lean towards using scales but not as much as you may be led to believe by other reviewers. The leads are melodic when they should be and furious the other half of the time. The production arms the guitars very well and gives them a unique, meaty sound, contrary to what many reviewers have stated.

Which brings me to my second point, the production. Bill Metoyer has done an excellent job in bringing out Warbringer's sound. The production is raw but still modern, everything can be heard very well except the drums seem a teensy bit under the mix, but all of Ryan Bates' fills can still be heard, and theres a hell of a lot of them. The drums vary a tonne, but the speed is mostly fast to mid tempo the whole time. The drums keep up well in all of the songs and thank satan that Bates dosen't employ sloppy d-beating constantly like the Evile drummer and Pitiful Reign's drummer.

The bass is apparently inaudible on War Without End, but is actually pretty well heard even without concentrating on it, though there isn't many parts I can notice where the bass does anything extra, it's mainly just following the guitars.

Finally, John Kevill's vocals. While I can understand some people might not like the idea of every song focusing on war and it's effects and zombies and things instead of being molested by your next door neighbour (Machine Head) I can't find any reason why someone couldn't like John Kevill's psychotic screaming. He's a great screamer, and he's nothing like the secretly in the closet type job metalcore vocals employed by so many cookie cutter bands nowadays. Kevill has a very signature sound to his voice and he belts out tonnes of lines that while being kind of generic still a hell lot of ass.

Overall, I say this album deserves a high rating because it's plain and simple good hard fast thrash. Everything from the excellent opener to an uber catchy closing song rules on this high quality album.

Bring the Boys Back Home - 50%

marktheviktor, February 28th, 2009

War Without End is right. This album just goes on and on spewing about modern warfare without any discernable moments of interest to keep it afloat. These guys play fast and hard to little effect as almost every song just crams into the next. If I hadn’t looked, I would have thought track one was still going only to find out I was already on the third. While I’ve seen worse “retro” thrash bands of late, Warbringer sounds like a band that was picked up by Century Media to lure in more fringe fans of Testament and Exodus. These guys just seemingly came out of nowhere to fill an opening slot for such American thrash metal acts like them.

The most under powered thing on this album are the drums. Rick Allen with his arm tied behind his back would sound more intense than this. The strikes clearly lag behind everything else. It sounds if they had to turn his mix up to give the illusion that there is real speed here. It doesn’t help that the bassist sucks too. Just because Slayer’s bass lines have long since been irrelevant shouldn’t mean that winging it on bass for thrash is ok. The only time that I heard the four strings have any real authority on its own was on Total War and even then it made Tom Araya’s playing sound like Cliff Burton in comparison.

Warbringer’s guitarists bring a lot of Alex Skolnick/Eric Peterson influence to the fore with maybe some James Murphy metronomic diversity. I do have misgivings about the economy picking because these solos are not intrinsically long nor the riffs very versatile from their root chords. They just come and go at the same speed each time relying too much on a liberally mounted tailpiece for maximum whammy allowance. So basically we have guitarists that have mastered speed frills at short bursts but no sense of original placement or signature edge much less staying power. Listen to Instruments of Torture and notice the good main line riff but you will hear a lack of any expansion for anywhere for the lead to really shine through.

The vocals on this album are standard fare thrash shouting. The only notable instance when they are doing any reaching are on Born of Ruins. John Kevill does a very high scream to kick it off. It’s a nice effort and the whole song itself is decent actually but doesn’t stand out too much from the rest of War Without End’s been-there-done-that air of familiarity. Combat Shock just soars right out with blazing riffs hot-wired from the Jeff Hanneman fleet of high powered ferocity but Warbringer stalls right out of the lot since they can’t build enough convincing force for any real attack of forcefulness. All this band really does is pad derivative riffs and beats with canonic speed patented by eighties thrash bands like Slayer and Dark Angel for instance.

If you are thinking of buying this album, what are you getting? You’re getting jammed is what. You’ll probably have to pay regular price for a throwback thrash album that has eleven songs of conventional, bone stock aggression and only one of those tracks is more than four minutes long. Sorry, no refunds. Throwback takes on a new meaning.

Warbringer/War Without End - 65%

MethylinInfo, December 3rd, 2008

Formed in 2004, this band initially had to change their name from Onslaught to Warbringer because there was another UK thrash metal band that owned that name. After reading mixed reviews for this release, I've concluded that the album is not entirely original but overall it was decent. These guys play thrash metal in the vein of Exodus. At first, I didn't think much of it. However, I thought that I'd give it a few more spins to rule out if it was unique or just a bore. I'd say it's a little bit of both.

These guys are young (between the ages of 17-22) and do show potential. In terms of the music, the guitars by John Laux and Adam Carroll were good but not entirely unique. I did like the leads. They were amazing. The tempos are a mixture of slow to moderate speeds yet at other times they are just downright fast. However, on one intro the guitar was entirely clean ("On The Crack Of Dawn"). Again musically, the sounds were pretty ordinary. The overall thrash efforts weren't as intriguing as I would've hoped. I thought the last track ("A Dead Current") was simply a waste of a song. I'm not sure why they included it on here because it made the album sound less interesting. They should've really kept it to 10 tracks/40 minutes and that's it no instrumental.

As far as the lyrics go, they sing about war, violence and death. Nothing really impressive or astounding as far as that goes. Of course the title of the album is "War Without End". But in terms of the lyrics they could've been better thought out. The vocals by John Kevill were kind of repetitive because it was just screaming by him throughout the entire album. There were some backup vocals however which made it less monotonous. John as a whole I don't think was vocally effective because it's boring to be just screaming through an entire release. That's my standpoint on the issue.

The production was alright though not legendary. The drums (by Nic Ritter), guitars, and vocals were well mixed which was a plus. Actually, this album was produced by Bill Metoyer. He is considered to be a great thrash metal producer. The sound quality overall was good. Nothing that was lacking on that front. He did do well with this. The album as a whole isn't all that bad but they needed to focus better on the songwriting lyrically and musically. The rhythm guitars just didn't strike me as being very effective. Like I mentioned though, the leads are awesome. No dispute there. But the rhythm guitar just wasn't very stimulating. If they were going to stay in the vein of Exodus and keep up that sound, then they should've made a better of an effort to do so. The fact that this wasn't the case simply brought the album down and made it less effective than if they did incorporate this on here.

Decent though pretty repetative. - 79%

IWP, September 23rd, 2008

Warbringer (along with Evile, Bonded By Blood, and few other bands) are one of the bands that seem to be bringing thrash metal back. They're one of the "new wave of thrash metal bands" so to speak.

For a while, I was looking for bands like this, bands that were eager to bring thrash back to where it belongs. When I first listened to Warbringer, I was amazed at how great they sounded. So I was hyped when I found out that they were releasing a new album. A few after it's release, I bought this album from my local cd store, and when I first listened to it, I was stoked. I thought the album kicked ass. I thought that this band was bringing old school thrash back.

However, after a few more listens overtime, I realized something. I realized that this band gets far more credit then they deserve. Sure, this album amazes you when you first hear it, but after a while you realize that this album tends to get very boring. There are there major problems with this album.

First, the production. It seems like the producer was trying to make this sound like an album that came out of the 80s, but failed miserably. It's too mushy and dry sounding. This brings the listening quality of the songs down a bit.

Then, the next problem is the singer. Now I'll admit, I'm really not one for screaming/growling vocals, but give me a break! Some people are saying that he sounds like the vocalist from Kreator. What the fuck? To me, he sounds nothing like Kreator's singer. He sounds more like you're typical screamer from a run-of-the-mill metalcore band. He sounds like he should be in a crapcore band, not thrash fuckin' metal! Leave the harsh vocals to bands like Kreator, Sodom, and Death, because you sure as hell don't make them sound good. Now when he does it in exactly every freaking song, it tends to get pretty irritating. Which leads to the next problem.

The album is too repetative. You get one awesome song in the form of Total War which totally rocks. Then, you get more songs that sound just like it. This formula gets far too boring and irritating for it's own good. This is the main problem of the album, and because of this, the quality of the album goes down tremendously.

However, two songs stand out paticulary on this album which are Total War and Born on the Ruins. The first song mentioned is classic thrash, full of great riffs, awesome solos that sound like old Metallica back when they didn't suck, and great drumming. This song rocks from beginning to end. The other mentioned song strays away from the formula, and throws in some actually high pitched screaming at the beginning, then follows it up with some kick ass riffs that demand you to headbang until your head flys off. The rest of the album, though is pretty inconsistent and avarage. Especially for thrash standards. None of the songs on here are paticulary bad, and it's alot better than any of that core shit that is forced down my throat, but it's just not up to the high standards of thrash metal.

In conclusion, this band isn't bad. They're just bland and pretty avarage. They're certainly not worthy of carrying the thrash flag either. I'd rather recommend getting Evile's or Bonded By Blood's new album if you're into the new thrash thing, as they do it alot better than these guys.

Making Sense of Chaotic Reviews - 70%

Revengeance, August 6th, 2008

In looking at the previous reviews for this album I found an unusual amount of inconsistencies. Some not matters of "opinion", such as the consistency of drumming and production quality, and some partly subjective like genre. In defense of the latter: different people hearing the same thing can focus on different aspects, which in turn can cater to predispositions, which in turn can lead a person to view everything that follows in the same way regardless of what it actually is. Similarly, even entirely subjective opinions like overall quality can be supported by falsehoods. That being said, I will detail what I've heard on the album with external references where possible so the reader can actually compare and contrast. This doesn’t solve the predisposition problem, but it does offer some insulation against it, particularly with this preface in mind.

The drumming sounds triggered, aka no sloppiness anywhere on it in any construable way shape or form. On the production, they got the vintage sound by using a rawer form of distortion rather than a deep rich one (Arch Enemy), probably by not overdubbing or using “wall of sound” recording techniques. They did not do it by making the production simply worse as there's no hum/fuzz/white noise (early Destruction) anywhere, nor do they have the far away + some reverb feel of true 80s speed metal (Ride the Lightning, So Far So Good So What). Lastly, if something seems too loud to you in the mix, make sure you don’t have an EQ on. The artists EQ’d the it already to suit the material.

The album contains mostly down and dirty speed metal riffs (Kreator, early Testament, Sodom), with some dips into the melodic here and there that appeal to the least common denominator between speed metal, melodic death metal, and metalcore (which I hate with a passion by the way). Speaking of metalcore: metalcore (Killswitch Engage, latter-day Machine Head) acts are basically just a new bastardized form of groove metal (early Machine Head), with vocals that draw from nu-metal (Mudvayne), or melodic death metal bands in a case like As I Lay Dying… sometimes they sound like Phil Anselmo wannabes (Throwdown?)... but they never ever sound like the vocalist in Warbringer, who seems directly inspired by the classic speed metal yell (Slayer, Dark Angel, Sadus, Kreator), though he does dabble in a more growly style (early Sodom).

As for sounding the same... that's true... course its true of pretty much every speed metal band. If you're a fan of a genre you have a keener sense of the subtleties that separate lines, songs, and techniques which, objectively, sound “the same”. The claim of sameness would be more defendable if the album lacked abrasive changes but it doesn’t. You may not like the changes or the soundscape may not be to your tastes such that the lines pull you in, but they are observably there.

Ultimately, I concur that the album sounds pretty generic. Though its sufficiently aggressive, it severely lacks the kind of flair that makes things stand out if you aren’t already looking for them. This is particularly important when a band chooses to go with a vintage sound: since the production doesn’t have the in-your-face-punch (latter-day Testament) of most modern badassery, the composition has to deliver. It works as an “album” listen, but as some others mentioned none of the tracks particularly distinguish themselves (at least not by a 3rd listen) enough for me to have learned their names. I will conclude by saying that I deem “torchbearer” and “flagship” as hideous overstatements made by those riding a hype-train. Particularly since Slayer and Testament have released awesome speed metal in recent years. Lastly though I haven’t heard a whole lot of the “new speed metal”, I have heard Onslaught, and I most certainly like them better, I suggest those who are or were interested in and/or enjoyed this album, check them out. *Technically this is cheating since Onslaught was an old school metal band that just split up for a very long time, but their quality stands none-the-less.

Weak, Uninspired, Poser Thrash for Mallcore Kids - 1%

nggr, July 28th, 2008

After seeing many threads about 'retro' thrash, and seeing this band pop up a lot, I decided to hear for myself what all this hype is about.

Big mistake.

Right away, I am met with what will be with me for this entire album; bad production trying to cover up sloppy playing, bad musicianship, simply horrible vocals that would fit a metalcore band perfectly, and a generally awful, and weak album.

Everything sounds the same. Next to no variation at all. When I was on track 7, Instruments of Torture, I honestly thought that I had left my repeat button on! That's got to tell you something. Even the solos all fucking sound the same.

The production is very bad, like they tried to make it sound like the 80's, but lacked the inspiration to do so. The guitars and bass are at the front, bass a bit louder than the guitars. The vocals (which i will get too later) seem to take the middle ground, while the drums are buried, which is a shame, as the drummer is the most talented member of this band by far.

Now the vocals, oh good god the vocals. I would sooner listen to Matt McGatchy spit on Lord Worms legacy then this vocalist. He really needs to go back to whatever shitty -core band he came from, because he does not belong in a thrash band. But on the other side, however, he does fit this band perfectly, seeing as the band is shit, and he is even more shit.

As for 'highlights,' the final track, A Dead Current, stands out as being different from the rest, actually good, instrumental, and, most of all, the sign that this giant piece of shit is over, thereby earning this album a point. Other than that, the riffs near the end of the first two songs, Total War, and Systematic Genocide are catchy, but that's pretty much it

In closing, if you like mallcore, you will like this. If you like Trivium, you will like this. If you like your metal real however, stay far away from this. Now if you excuse me, I'll be listening to good recent thrash now.

Fuck this band.

Enjoyable, but nothing special. - 75%

IronMessiah, July 9th, 2008

I have heard a lot of good things about this band, in fact a lot of great things.

However, look what I saw on my first glance of the album. Tanks, nuculear war, war, genocide, war... This seems to be just an average modern-day thrash band. The truth is that, well... Warbringer is just an average modern-day thrash band. Total War by Warbringer from the album War Without End... are you seeing a theme here?

What I heard was far from spectacular, but kept me listening becuase it was just plain fun to listen to. The obvious highlight of the album is "Total War", filled with generic leads and melodic riffs. Nothing is really great about this track compositionally or structurally, but guess what? Thrash was never meant to be about composition or structure, it was about banging your head and throwing your fist up, which is just what this song(and album for the most part) makes you want to do. And you can imagine at shows when they play this song and it stops for him to say "Total Waaaar!" everyone there will be backing him up. How even the most exclusive thrash elitist could not enjoy this song beats me.

The rest of the album is basically just like "Total War" except not as good overall. Still enjoyable to listen to. ( I'd like to point out that both this album and Evile's Enter the Grave both have a shark-attack themed song on track 6, hmm, coincidence you think?)

The only tracks that are somewhat different from the rest of the album are "At the Crack of Doom" and "A Dead Current"(the 'secret track'). The first 40 seconds of the former trick you into thinking that it's going to be a slow doomy song, then, surprise- Black/Thrash attack! Well actually, it's not that reminiscent of black metal, but the tremolo-ed lead line is sure convincing.

The secret track is a bit slower and pretty short. It's a guitar-solo driven instrumental(like we haven't seem one of those before!) that is only a tad bit interesting, but manages to keep attention long enough for the album to end.

Overall, not a great album musically, but party-wise, it's amazing. Perfect for cranking up loud in a car and going 60 down the highway with. Warbringer are like 3 Inches of Blood for thrash fans(but they obviously take themselves more seriously): mediocre musically but still fun to listen to and reasonably catchy. This album isn't a must for thrash fans, but it's entertaining.

Thrash Metal Is Alive and Good! - 89%

CHRISTI_NS_ANITY8, June 19th, 2008

For those who believe that the thrash metal is dead, I want to recommend this album right to you. Warbringer are one of the youngest worldwide realities in thrash metal along with Violator and Fastkill. For them seems like the time has never passed and immediately, we are back in the 80s where there weren’t so many influences and a leather jacket, united to an electric guitar was enough to play loud music.

Bill Metoyer, as producer, knows his job very well and he’s able to give the instruments the really old school touch they deserve, united to a great, devastating production with hammering sounds. The title track is a true explosion of vehemence, energy and speed like the great 80s left to us. Up tempo parts, fast solos and a screamed refrain are enough to me to fall immediately in love again with these sonorities. Anyway, I never stopped loving them but there was a period in which the world seemed really empty of thrash metal bands and this always led me listening to the old school ones.

The attitude of this band is one of the greatest characteristics along with the devastating music. I’m sure that if this album was released back in the magic period of this genre, it would have been a huge success. I’m totally convicted. There are no signs of modernisms or will to play a different form of music that is not thrash and this is the thing that really drives me crazy for happiness: so often I faced self proclaimed “truly old school” bands that were a mere mix of groove parts and boring tempo. Here we have nothing of this.

The mid paced tracks and sections are perfectly mixed with fast ones to create a good blend of differences that doesn’t lead to monotony and boredom. Good examples can be “Systematic Genocide” or the punkish, with a NWOBHM touch, “Hell On Earth”. What I found really pummelling is the guitars sound when the play the rhythmic parts: it’s completely “full” and powerful in the sound, especially during the galloping breaks.

The solos are awesomely inspired to old Metallica in their tapping and more soft tremolo picking style. The Slayer one is heavier and rawer in my opinion. The vocals are truly aggressive and somehow similar to Schmier from Destruction in the recent times. Also the quite short length of the songs is another good thing to appreciate because they don’t result dull and, in their shortness, they are always complete and incredibly mature.

At the end, I can only repeat that I strongly recommend this piece of burning thrash metal to anyone into this genre and to anyone who believed in the past that thrash was dead, and I was one of them too. Prepare to thrash!

Cookie cutter wannabe thrash... - 35%

stonedjesus, April 2nd, 2008

This is so generic, it's flat out pathetic. How many times are uninformed kids going to make this same album? It sounds like a poor mish-mash of Kreator, Slayer and more modern boring bands like the aforementioned Municipal Waste.

Everything about this album from the cover art, to the guitar riffs and completely stupid lyric sheet is derivative and uninspired. It's as if some kids spent 3-4 years listening to thrash metal albums they downloaded on the internet and emulated them in hopes of becoming a part of the nu-wave of thrash metal TREND.

It almost seems as if the band are hoping their plagiarism goes unnoticed, as many younger folks into the trend of retro thrash are less informed or more casual listeners.

Production is not bad, no worse than your average modern band. The clarity helps it sound professional, but the actual guitar and drum performances (can't hear the bass) lack any sort of skill beyond Kerry King 101 guitar tricks and stolen Extreme Aggression riffs. Compared to a band like say... Avenger of Blood or hell... even Nocturnal Breed, the guitar work is just unexperienced and poorly performed. The drummer is a hack, and is a very weak link. Some drummers can pull off sloppy with certain styles of music, this guy is just incompetent and unimaginative.

The only reason this album is worthy of 35/100 is the production job. I can see the producer didn't have much to work with and made a clean job of it. I highly recommend passing on this one...

New Movement Of Thrash Metal? - 70%

Wrathchild1984, March 14th, 2008

I heard this album almost the day it came out. To be honest I enjoyed the some of the demo songs better than the album version. I heard a lot of generic thrash riffs, some strong lead guitar work and sloppy drumming! The double bass work could use some practicing because you can tell the drummer is struggling in most of the song. The vocals could be more versatile also, its just a guy screaming out words not really singing, although in one of the songs the singer does belt out a good high note scream in the beginning, it almost sounds too good to be real, maybe studio enhanced? Another problem would be a few rip off riffs and song structures to some bands they are influenced by.

Some stand out tracks would be; Total War (better leads in the beginning opposed to the demo version), Systematic Genocide (other than the huge Demolition Hammer rip off of Skull Fracturing Nightmare, the breakdown part after the solo!), At The Crack Of Doom (great black metal feel too it and acoustic guitar in the intro), Beneath The Waves, Combat Shock (even though it sounds close to Systematic Genocide).

This album has great production although the guitar tone could be a little better and you can't here the bass guitar at all. Also there are sound effect loops on almost every song, you should have cut down on that. Overall I guess this record is pretty good if you like the thrash/death metal genre.


The_Boss, March 7th, 2008

There’s been a lot of talk and speculation around this release about Warbringer being the new sound and new torchbearers of thrash metal… and I 100% agree with this statement. While they don’t have a totally unique and original sound, it is without a doubt a fresh attack at thrash sounding like it came straight from the 80’s with a slick production. I think this is perfect for new age thrash and even able to compete right up there with the legendary thrash albums of old like Bonded By Blood, Endless Pain, or Eternal Nightmare. All the famous thrash giants of the 80’s are easily distinguished in here from Vio-lence to Megadeth making for quite a fucking awesome album.

The riffs are killer, taking your neck and snapping it at high velocity, the vocals are vicious, making you sing along losing your voice with the catchy choruses like “TOTAL WAR!” or “HELL..ON..EARTH!”, or simply bring an eargasm with the overall blend that creates this perfect thrash sound. Warbringer have captured what thrash is all about, having a youthful and energetic vigor that isn’t quite as prominent nowadays that it used to be. Everything about War Without End makes this fun and catchy as hell all because they have such enthusiasm and mastery over their instruments. While the theme obviously isn’t original, Warbringer have concocted something that is just as good, making entertaining thrash.

War Without End is obviously centered on themes of battle, war, killing and war related things like submarines, tanks, and explosions. Yeah you’ve heard it before, Sodom did it, Vio-lence dabbled in it, most thrash bands sing about it so it isn’t completely original again like I’ve mentioned but then again who can’t get enough of killing the foe and glory and shit, I can’t.

Every song on here is fucking awesome, from the opening drum rolls and melodic as anything guitar soloing on Total War to the bludgeoning riff in Systematic Genocide all of this reeks of thrash metal perfection. Other influences are brought with the speedy guitars and blast beats or traditional heavy metal guitars at points, but in the end I find this is down and dirty thrash metal highlighted with the awesome soloing attack of John Laux and perfect choruses sung along at a raw and killer vocal performance by John Kevill. Kevill has the perfect voice for Warbringer, furious and evil sounding at hyper fast pace reaching some awesome high points and great growled parts, kudos to this guy coming out of nowhere, he’s the next fucking Mille Petrozza!

Warbringer ARE the current torchbearers and harbingers of new age thrash, I can only hope more bands will take notice and take advantage of the tools most important, the lessons of those other bands that fall trap to trends and go off course. Warbringer have captured the thrash sound of old that everyone loves and brought it back with a youthful fresh aural attack. Hails to these guys, I’m looking forward to the next one and in the meantime I’ll be head banging to this one.


BloodIronBeer, March 1st, 2008

Good things have been said about this band. Acclaim so high, I figured I couldn't go wrong.

The excessively generic (and poor) presentation, and lyrics didn't help to pique my interest, but when people claim they're some kind of flagship for the new thrash wave, I couldn't pass them up. But now I assert that I flat out disagree with that silly statement. If this is the best the new wave of thrash has to offer, I think I'll invest my time elsewhere.

First and foremost, the greatest problem here is that it feels like they're trying too hard. Most of the material just feels forced, and the riffs just don't stick. This sound that blends the Teutonic sound and Bay area sound, seems to me to be just a blending of stolen Municipal Waste riffs with stolen Kreator riffs. Not what I’d call impressive.

The drumming is fast but sloppy. The vocals are your standard fare. The lead guitar work is almost laughably generic. The guitarist goes through the motions with some simple hammer-ons and running some scales. I don't get how this poor guitar work passes as being some masterful melodic element to the music. I also don't see this as being necessarily very "intense". From what I've heard I really, really excepted to start killing people with headbutts as soon as I heard it, but it was at first and still remains, underwhelming. It's not because the band plays slow or sluggish - it's because the riffs just don't feel powerful. The riffs are just ... not very good. If you want thrash that'll inspire you to rip people's faces off, Hypnosia and Fastkill spring to mind. But don't bother with this if you're looking for something truly intense.

The only standout track I see is Born of the Ruins which does start with a very cool, melodic riff, probably one of only a few good riffs to be found here.

So, the band plays fast, generic thrash, with generic guitar work, stolen Kreator and Municiple Waste riffs, and some of the most bland, boring lyrics I've seen in a while. Flagship of the new thrash movement? Let's hope not. Nice background music? Maybe.


Stormrider2112, February 10th, 2008

To summarize this album in one sentence, think "Pleasure To Kill" meets "Peace Sells." A true hybrid of Bay Area and Teutonic thrash; fast, ripping thrash, and vocalist John Kevill sounds just like Mille Freakin' Petrozza. This album rips along with only a few seconds of slow-ish (as in, sub-200 BPM) scattered througout. The riffs are all textbook headbanging thrash ranging from "Bonded By Blood" to "Peace Sells" to "Scream Bloody Gore," and hitting all points in between. The solos are incredible...both melodic and shreddy...not at all like Slayer's "cat through a fan" whammy wankery (closer to Gary Holt's melodic whammy wankery).

For highlights...pretty much the entire album, but Beneath The Waves, Combat Shock, and the opener, Total War flat-out slay everything in their path. Hell, I'm surprised my stereo didn't explode as soon as I pushed play, or that my neighbors are somehow still alive after 40 minutes of being bludgeoned by sledgehammer riff after sledgehammer riff.

Bow before the new torch-bearers of THRAAAAASH!