|The Swiss 3-piece comes back with its follow-up, an 11-track CD of old-school German/US Thrash Metal whose claimed reminiscences are set down to Slayer, Violator and Vengeance Rising. Of course there are more references that will be mentioned later, but the particularity resides in the Christian lyrics; there aren't many outfits of this genre proclaiming this kind of messages, such as the reign of God, the Judgment day, not giving up one's faith in the darkest moments of one's existence even when you don't get what you beg for or deserve, the Lord's wrath for what mankind did to his son, a wrong deity to adore. Actually, there are also songs describing other situations or feelings - a gladiator's destiny, widespread hatred, love for Thrash Metal, a Thrash Metal show, a nuclear warfare threat, consternation and desperation - but the spiritual direction is plain, and since I believe in free speech, I find nothing contradictory or wrong with that.
Hard, loud, devoid of modernities and compromiseless, that's the way they like it and from the opener "Kingdom" we can have a confirmation right away: full throttle onslaughts, moshing riffs one better than the other, a short but effective guitar solo, echoed vocals during the final aural attack.
"The Day Will Come" continues with slamdancing rhythms, crunchy riffs and devastating kick drum beats which leave the listener dumb and speechless.
If the best chorus of the album comes with the title track, it has to be said that alongside a super fast riff and a tank-like drumwork, this song has clear Thrashcore outlines.
A catchy refrain, drunk vocals and some stops 'n' go characterize "Hate in Our Veins", whose Thrash style is close to Violence, whereas a pre-solo riff seems extracted from Metallica's "And Justice for All" sessions.
Absolutely adorable is the drummer's performance at the end of the tight and brief "Till Death", which, increased by a stunning recording and mixing, sounds like we're received with a shower of stones, while we're welcomed by a crushing riff in the mighty "The Life" (the record's finest); this is definitely the more worked out and therefore complete composition of the eleven here included.
Rich in time changes, "Thrash Metal" contains an unforgettable refrain already after the first listen; the two axe solos are very classical and border with traditional Heavy Metal, yet the icy on the cake are the precious deep bass lines filling all the track up. This song is accompanied by a video with growling vocals released in 2013; although I'm a huge Death Metal fan, I feel clean vocals are more suitable for this combo.
A bashing Speed Metal riff is the protagonist in "Atomic Idiocy", also partially based upon a Hardcore framework; similarly, "Rod of God's Wrath", thrashes at the speed of light, embellished by a guitar solo full of nice artistic variations.
The piece where the skinbeater's precision is stressed out most is "Why", one where no new elements are added and that might appear as a filler to the least careful; that would be a mistake thanks to the tireless drumwork and the bust-ass refrain inviting you to sing it along with an arm and index high; the axe solo is like lightning emanating from the loudspeakers and I have no doubts this is bound to be one of the most requested songs live.
The drum pattern doesn't change in "False God", but it's the entwining between the guitar riffs and the drums that makes it big, and not all Metal guitar players are able to create and play such kicky ultra-fast riffs like the one in the central part.
freaKings' material follows the paths of Deliverance, Kreator, S.O.D., Tourniquet, Mortification, early Living Sacrifice and the such and is as simple as almost everything else that was composed in the 80s, notwithstanding this doesn't mean it has less value whatsoever; it is a mere art choice and trust me, the trio knows its job pretty well; claps must go to the recording engineer, who has been capable of delivering distinct bass strokes in the mixing, as well as being generous with the snare drums within the global sound's economy, so that the whole album sounds killer and rocks hard even at low sound pressure levels.
|MARKUS GANZHERRLICH - November 20th, 2014|
Line-up on this record:
Jonathan Brutschin - guitars, v. (ex-Barbeque, ex-Lion Of Juda)
Simon Straumann - drums (ex-Lion Of Juda)
Toby Straumann - bass guitar (ex-Lion Of Juda)
Bubendorf, Basel-Landschaft - Switzerland
-(demo-CD - 2009)
-No Way out (CD - 2011)
-Gladiator (CD - 2014)