With frustration at the current Covid-19 situation growing by the day, it’s not too fanciful to suggest that some people might need an occasional, brief release of aggression to help with the continuing sense of isolation. So, before you start primal screaming into the nearest pillow, hurling dinner plates at your partner-cum-cellmate, or punching the cat, you could always just grab Weapons of Tomorrow (Napalm Records), the new album by Californian thrashers Warbringer, and headbang your quarantine problems away.
Featuring riffs more precise than a missile targeting system, opener ‘Firepower Kills’ explodes with a fierce breakdown, dive-bombing solos and relentless thrashing aggression, ‘The Black Hand Reaches Out’ recalls the mid-paced, gang vocal chop of ‘Remain Violent’ from 2017’s Woe to the Vanquished (Napalm) while the stomping ‘Crushed Beneath the Tracks’ finds vocalist John Kevill spitting out his words with seriously harmful amounts of venom.
From its gentle acoustic intro, the foreboding ‘Defiance of Fate’ builds into a multi-layered monster, Kevill digging deep into his guts, presumably with some sort of military bayonet, to pull out one of his best-ever vocal performances. ‘Unraveling’ is a bruising, three-minute thrash attack of the highest order, while ‘Heart of Darkness’ showcases the talents of bass player Chase Bryant, even entering death metal territory with its bursts of sheer speed.
‘Power Unsurpassed’ does exactly what you think it will but even more mean-spirited intent, ‘Outer Reaches’ switches from lightning-fast riffery to crushing intensity before climaxing with another flurry of energy. ‘Notre Dame (King of Fools)’ recalls the story of the famous hunchback and the now charred remains of his famous cathedral home, before the epic climax of ‘Glorious End’ sums itself up perfectly.
With each song built for maximum moshpit devastation, Weapons of Tomorrow is a focused and frantic, unstoppable machine of destruction.
8 / 10