Chemicaust bubble up from the toxic waste in the grand Texas tradition of brutal old school thrashers such as Devastation, Exhorder and Gammacide. These up-and-comers bring the wailing fury of death/thrash to their sound on their debut full-length without changing much else since their 2015 EP ‘As Empires Fall’. The album is a total ripper from start to finish that paces itself alongside it’s late 80’s/early 90’s death/thrash metal heroes. From the Demolition Hammer sized riffing of the opener “As Empires Fall” that gives way into ‘Chemical Exposure’-type technical riffing Chemicaust make it clear they’re aiming for the heaviest, most extreme era of thrash metal’s history.
Though the album opens with a storm of riffs and wailing whammy-dives the bulk of the record pulls from the annuls of Exodus, some Sadus style fidgetry and some unavoidable Kreator style arena thrashing. In many ways the entirety of ‘Unleashed Upon This World’ reminds me of ‘Coma of Souls’ era Kreator. The band slips fluidly between raging brutal traditional thrash metal and death/thrash attack and “Human Sacrifice” showcases this dynamic with an arrangement worthy of the earliest days of Pestilence. At the same time tracks like “The Absurd Beautiful Lie” starts to resemble ‘Terminal Spirit Disease’-era At the Gates to my ears, but a large part of that is due to the drum patterns and vocalist whose howling style is very early Tompa here.
One of my favorite tracks here is perhaps “Incarcerated” where the band re-ignites the wailing solos and blistering speed of the opener. It more or less exemplifies their bombastic, everything-in Demoliton Hammer-esque delivery that juggles the aggressive melodic death/thrash you’d expect from the Dew-Scented crowd of the early 00’s. Although as their sound builds to peak intensity the issue I have with the lead guitar performances begin to show through. These guys are excellent in terms of riffing and their brutal style of thrash metal rhythm guitar work is impressive and fully on point in terms of style and all that. The problem is with some of the lead guitar work which just doesn’t have the tight, screeching wails or intensity they were going for. Enough of the solos fall flat for it to be worthy of a mention, but not enough to mar the album’s full listen at all. It is a great first full-length effort from an admirably inspired and heavy band with great taste in thrash and old school death metal. They’re definitely up there alongside Rapture as some of 2018’s finest thrashers.
|Released||January 5, 2018|
|BUY/LISTEN on their Bandcamp!||Follow Chemicaust on Facebook|
Ashes of the dead. 3.25/5.0
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