Who loves Metallica? Eradikator love Metallica! The Birmingham, UK thrash quartet take no shame in paying tribute to James Hetfield & Co. on their new album, Edge of Humanity (Tribunal/Divebomb).
The Brummies’ second album, Edge of Humanity has strong overtones of Master of Puppets (Vertigo) with the occasional Annihilator-esque injection of melody and a penchant for flamboyant solos. Anyone who followed Trivium circa The Crusade (Roadrunner) will know be in familiar territory.
Opener ‘Mesmerised’ could easily be mistaken for a ‘Battery’/’Whiplash’ mashup, ‘Man Behind the Mask’ has a ‘Shortest Straw’-meets-Testament vibe, while ‘Astral Body’ is probably the highlight; catchy, aggressive and generous with the guitar histrionics. It’s fast, aggressive, and straight to the point; and thanks to vocalist/bassist Pat Cox’s bark the vocals are easy to sing along to.
These guys are clearly skilled musicians and are busting at the seams with quality riffs and solos – closing instrumental track ‘Kairos Passing’ makes that abundantly clear – but are occasionally found lacking on the song writing. Too often the band lock into a mid-tempo chug that makes a lot of the songs sound the same – the title track, ‘Fortress Unknown’ and ‘Seasons of Rage’ are all largely interchangeable.
They’re not subtle about who their influences are, but Eradikator know good thrash metal. If you like the old classics from the Big 4 and others, there’s little really to fault here. And UK thrash has always been second fiddle to the Bay Area (aside from Xentrix, Sabbat and Onslaught, there’s been very little to shout about), so it’s nice to see some home-grown talent making a good stab at things.