Review by Robert Baker
Hailing from the more lyrical end of the world known as Ireland (and, more specifically, Newry in Dublin), Gama Bomb are bringing you the finger-wrangling riffs of speed combined with the uncompromising power of a thrash band that aren’t so much firing on all cylinders as soaking them in gallons of flammable liquid metal and seeing how high they can make the flames.
With such unassuming names as ‘Shitting Yourself To Live’ and ‘Smoke The Blow With Willem Dafoe ‘ bedecking the track-listing on the bands fourth release The Terror Tapes, there seems little reason for not thinking Gama Bomb are an uncompromising band that refuses to hold anything back.
Fast and furious the tracks are never frivolous, ‘Terrorscope’ being the first release from the album and hitting all bases with regard to hooks, Devil-horns, and a huge solo that passes more than a nod to the level of skill contained within the band, even finding room for a quick run-through ‘The Flight of The Bumblebee’ in an almost fourth-wall breaking moment that can’t fail to enamour you to the song.
Vocally, however, things stray from the assumed path of bass-speaker shaking screams and idolator invocations, with frontman Philly Byrne able to broaden the genres horizons with vocals capable of creating a more unique voice in the genre. Similar in style to Bruce Dickinson, Philly matches the intensity and strength of that legendary Maiden man, bringing with it what could be the stepping stone for people to ‘get into’ Gama Bomb when traditionally not regular visitors to their section down the aisles of the local HMV.
How serious the band are in their production and playing is very apparent throughout, and you’ll be listening a long time before giving up trying to find some besmirchment or ‘could-be-better’ bits on the album. But like Alice Cooper and Wednesday 13, there are definitely some tongues wedged firmly in cheeks here, the whole coming across as an adventure in musical mirth and face melting moments with Terror Tapes courtesy of Gama Bomb Tours. It can even be overwhelming upon first listen, each track filled with so much musically and blistering in tempo it’s difficult to find the point where you click into the groove of the song sometimes.
But to those who do come the spoils of an album capable of finally welcoming you to the side of Thrash where they keep all the beer for the after-party, and someone’s just said there’s going to be cake!
7 out of 10
- The Wrong Stuff
- Legend Of Speed
- Backwards Bible
- Beverly Hill Robocop
- Smoke The Blow With Willem Dafoe
- We Started The Fire
- The Cannibals Are In The Streets Therefore All Flesh Must Be Eaten
- Shitting Yourself To Live
- Matrioshka Brain
- Metal Idiot
- Wrecking Ball