Fancy a slab of ballsy Death/Thrash? Then check out “Guardian of The Fire,” the debut studio full length from Canadian Death Thrashers Raider, I promise, you won’t go far wrong with this release!
“Guardian of The Fire” follows their well received 2018 EP “Urge to Kill” and is an eight-track, forty-seven minute offering of unconventional E-standard mayhem, Thrash overtones, and Blackened vocals, aiming to be and succeeding at being more diverse and aggressive than the EP, but above all a superbly engaging listen that is set to wow old fans and kindle new ones, a given that anyone who caught the two teaser singles will attest to. The aural bombardment par excellence album opener “Bound By No Fate,” a song about forging your own path in spite of all the overwhelming evidence that it is chosen for you, and the darkly diabolical and riff-tastic “Guardian of The Fire” with its double dose of squealing lead work, released as teasers for this album both forewarning of the exciting mayhem to follow.
As for the other six tracks, each is a face-ripper in its own right so no need to even consider a favourite, this is end to end brutal joy; “No Sign On The Dawn” with its chugging opening riffs that spill out into the main body of the track ramping up in pace alongside a brutally low vocal delivery and haunting mid-point leads. “Endless Vengeance” is driving and brutal, I love the vocals both here and across the whole album, with complementary backing vocals coming in slightly higher and more vitriolic.
“Infernal Justice” has catchy opening riffs that forewarn of the Thrashy salvo this track fires unrelentingly at you, second half screaming guitars herald a brutal direction switch and closing Thrashy lead work, whereas “Ravenous Hydra” boasts sinister riffing and a soaring opening roar which gets you fired up, and pounding drum work and tight riffing maintains that fire.
I love the construction of “Offering of Souls” I thought I detected a subtle Bolt Thrower homage in the opening and closing riffs and the middle part is just a dark Thrashing delight that twists and turns direction wise with an abundance of lead work punching it’s way through at regular intervals. As for the final track “Destroyer,” it is quite simply a diabolical delight.
“Guardian of The Fire” is certainly something to interest fans of bands like Exmortus, Annihilator, Skeletonwitch, Deicide or Carcass. Raider is one of the underground Thrash/Death bands to keep an eye on in 2020 and beyond. This one has been independently released and is available now on Bandcamp. Link below.
Rating – 5/5