Let me take you back to a time when life was simpler and easier. A time when high top sneakers, black t-shirts, studded bracelets and battle jackets were the uniform and Thrash Metal ruled the world. A little band named Death Angel appeared releasing their first album, “The Ultra Violence” and well I guess the rest is embedded in Thrash history. Fast forward to 2019 and yep Death Angel is still releasing albums and their new one is “Humanicide” and well it’s a beauty.
You can tell that these guys have been playing together for yonks and I reckon that when you’ve been playing for so long together you build a form of telepathy and it’s as if each member knows the exact note , smashing kick on the bass or snap on the snare to compliment the next piece of each track.
All of the songs have that ‘singalong in the car” or ‘blasting at home’ when no-one else is around feel, along with the obligatory air guitar actions. Some truly epic pieces included on this album are “Aggressor” which has an awesome hook and is one of my favs on this album, “Alive and Screaming” and of course the title track “Humanicide”.
“I Came For Blood” and the “The Pack have some of the best catchy rhythms you’ll hear with some splendid guitar work, earworm type hooks and clean vocals that, even though there are no guttural growls, are still sung with rage and power. “The Day I Walked Away”, “Immortal Beheaded” maybe more Heavy Metal tracks than Thrash but they are done with a purity and simplicity that takes nothing away from the outstanding musicianship of the band.
For any of you new bands coming through that want to play thrash, do yourself a favour and have a listen to these veterans of the genre. They may have aged but don’t discount that because the knowledge and craft that Death Angel brings is how Old School Thrash should be played.
There’s something familiar and reassuring about “Humanicide”. It’s like pulling on your favourite and much-loved Metal t- shirt or comfortable slippers or walking into the house and there’s a roast cooking. For the Death Angel diehards, you’ll love this album, as will those that like their metal old school and for those that just like pure Thrash Metal with no pretentious bullshit you’ll also enjoy this as much I did.
Rating – 4/5