Attack initiated by Nuclear Blast Records on 13 May 2016 and fire deflected by Stephen “to battle!” Brophy
Whenever I hear the name Destruction, the riff from ‘Bestial Invasion’ automatically starts playing in my head. It’s been like that for so many years now it’s not likely to change, the fact that they one of the figureheads of Teutonic Thrash, part of the German Big 4 and without doubt one of the leading members of the thrash movement globally never really comes to mind.
So to Under Attack, the band’s fourteenth studio release, along with numerous live albums, Eps and splits. The band’s sound has most definitely changed over the years, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, the sound is most definitely still thrash, still very German in style and still works. The demonic three-piece still pack a punch with frontman and bassist Schmier leading the assault. Probably the most notable change over the years is the cleaner production. There was always something about the band’s earliest albums where a more gritty album production actually added to and enhanced what they were trying to create and although it’s unfair to be harping back to those times, with some bands it’s difficult not to.
The underlying riffs are at times a bit slower than the early days, but that’s quite normal with the development of a lot of thrash bands over years but as with many, the level of angst doesn’t quite come through on this album. It’s a bit of a difficult album, on the one hand you have tracks like ‘Pathogenic’ – such a killer riff! – or ‘Second To None’ that have such an old school element but are one hundred percent full speed ahead thrashers. And then there’s newer sounding material like ‘Getting Used To The Evil’ which is a slower, more brooding track, and although it’s good it just doesn’t him home as hard as the uptempo thrashing madness.
Don’t misinterpret that as saying this isn’t a bloody strong album, because it is. There’s much more to dig your teeth into here than step back from, perhaps for me they are just a better band when they are spitting venom more aggressively. Speaking of Venom, there’s a decent cover version of ‘Black Metal’ on the album which contains a guest spot from Alex of Krisiun. I don’t know if it really adds too much to the overall product, but it’s worth a listen.
One thing that nobody could ever question is the work that the band put in. After thirty four years on punishing listeners’ ears with blistering riffs and pounding drums, with Mike and Vaaver respectively continuing the solid attack as always, there’s no sign of them slowing down too much. And with there being so much material there for them in 2016 with the world’s continuing plights, expect more aural assaults to come. Under Attack is a really good album, worth taking the time to listen to – the blistering attack on ‘Generation Nevermore’ should be enough to convince you. Destruction will be on the road in the UK in October with Flotsam And Jetsam, Enforcer and Nervosa – don’t miss out on seeing them. These tracks live will be crushing.
8.5 out of 10
- Under Attack
- Generation Evermore
- Getting Used To The Evil
- Elegant Pigs
- Second To None
- Stand Up For What You Deliver
- Conductor Of The Void