Ritual Carnage - "The Birth of Tragedy" (Osmose Prod.)


MARK: 100/100



Yahoo! This is one of those records that makes people at about 30 like me drool, stir, jump and slam one's heels by euphoria. The hope for a come-back of thrash is being brought by Destruction and other bands, but talking about Bay Area style we have had to wait long for Divine Decay and especially the American/Nippon Ritual Carnage, both on Osmose (in my opinion this is quite meaningful about the label's smartness and its good music tastes, too). Brilliantly recorded in the mountains of Hachioji, Japan, this severe neck pain-inducing following of the already quite well-impressioning "Every Nerve Alive", is their 3rd release and it's undoubtely their best ever; no way, no cheesy cheap retro crap in here! This is the ultimate thrash record of 2002!
First Tampa Bay, Florida native Danny Carnage returned to his original vocal style to accomodate this "Tampa Bay Area Thrash Metal" masterwork; moreover, the band's added Wataru "Mad Axeman" Yamada to the fulltime lineup, whom, together with Eddie Van Koide, allows Ritual Carnage to boast 2 of the best lead guitarists in this field. And, if this weren't enough for a very requiring metalbanger, I add that Naoya Hamaii's taken the double bass drum to its peak of extremism, maintaining it crackling the measure you need for speed/thrash songs!
This is a case in which there's no weak song set into to fill the CD, yet the chronicles compels me to give you some details: "The Sixth Sense", very fast, has a wonderful chorus and very Bay Area backing vocals, superb guitar solos; the title-track in addition features forged in fire riffs; "Paradox of Democracy" sounds very "Fabulous Disaster"'s Exodus-like, while the following "Fall of the Empire" has a Metallica/Violence start, and the only concession to the 90's is 20 seconds within "Shroud of Secrecy", quite similar to Biohazard vocals and riffs, but decidedly Bay Area to the core. "Sanity's Thin Line" could be described as the missing link to another masterpiece, that "Legacy" that Testament have never been to equal, whereas with "Grave New World" we even go back to the year 1983 with plain references to "Seek and Destroy". "Psycho-Sadistic Psychosis" is on the contrary a curious hybrid of Slayer jams with Violence and the middle career de-luxe Megadeth!!!
An extremely rare case of a death song turned into a thrash one, instead of the commoner way, the opposite, is "Infernal Death" (in memory of the pioneer and mentor of extreme technical metal Chuck Schuldiner), which Ritual Carnage already played 4 years ago during theEuropean tour along with Impaled Nazarene and Driller Killer, so as to prove it's not a commercial idea to exploit his memory, but an old cover they love to play.
Keep your eyes open not to miss the strictly limited version in digipack of this "The Birth of Tragedy", because it contains 2 songs more, while, sorry for your BANCOMAT, the vinyl adds a bonus 7", in total 4 songs more, but as old Texan Dimebag Darrell would say with his cool accent: "IT'S DAMN WELL SPENT MONEY, MAN...burp!"