Sad news to report as Bay Area Thrash vocalist Donnie Hiller of Trauma has died. The news came across from the band’s Facebook page, which you can see below. Donnie died yesterday September 28th, 2020, after a short illness, but no cause of death was revealed. Trauma is of course linked to Metallica history as they got Cliff Burton to leave that band and join them instead in 1982. Their last album As the world dies released in 2019. We send our sympathies out to Donnie’s family, friends, and the band as well at this difficult time.
All good things come to those who wait, and if there ‘s one thing Bay Area thrashers Heathen believe in, it’s making people wait. With a four year gap from their 1987 debut to the follow-up, followed by a nineteen year-long hiatus, a decade has now passed since The Evolution of Chaos (Mascot Records), so make the most of new album Empire of the Blind (Nuclear Blast Records) because who knows how long it will take for another one to appear. Continue reading
Long-running California Thrash metallers Psychosomatic will release their new album, their seventh The Invisible Prison, through Nefarious Industries, this Friday August 28th. The band has always funneled their old-school thrash influences through a centrifuge of other genre nods, without losing their unique sound. After the band premiered their last single “Fortune Dealer” features guest vocals by David Sanchez of Havok at Revolver, the band has partnered with us for the full album stream! Jam it out right now!
Filmmaker Adam Dubin chatted with Ghost Cult recently about the wide release of his acclaimed documentary, Murder In The Front Row, documenting the birth of Bay Area Thrash Metal scene, which birthed several genres. We chatted about the impetus to making the film, all the thrash metal stars he interviewed such as Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax, Exodus, Testament, and Death Angel (53 all told) his history in the business, making films and music videos in 1980’s such as Beastie Boys “Fight For Your Right To Party” and “No Sleep ‘Til Brooklyn”, his long history of interactions with Kerry King, the lasting impact the genre has had on all heavy music, and what he learned most during the project. You can purchase the deluxe version of Murder In The Front Row at this link, stream it on VOD, and check out our chat with Adam here: Continue reading
Whenever the time-honoured, if ultimately pointless “if it had been a Big Five…” question raises its ugly head, Bay Area bruisers Testament always find themselves at the forefront of the conversation. Even alongside names such as Exodus, Overkill, and Kreator, such is their… ahem, legacy (sorry), it’s not uncommon to find them as one of the top two preferred choices. Continue reading
It’s a little surprising to discover that, despite having known each other for over thirty years, Testament, Exodus, and Death Angel; three leading lights of the Bay Area thrash metal scene have never actually been on the road together before. Dubbed “The Bay Strikes Back”, the first UK date of this neck-snapping triple bill is located, rather appropriately, near the water. Okay, the Bristol Channel might not be the Pacific Ocean, and the Clifton Suspension Bridge might not be quite as impressive as the Golden Gate Bridge, but you can’t have everything now can you. Continue reading
Although formed in 1984, Heathen didn’t arrive on most people’s radars until the release of their debut album, Breaking the Silence (Combat Records) in 1987. Part of the legendary Bay Area Thrash scene, Heathen followed established acts such as Exodus and some bunch of relocated no-hopers called Metallica out of the region, joining the likes of fast-moving up-and-comers Testament, Vio-Lence, Death Angel, and Forbidden, among many others. Continue reading
Bay Area Thrash and Heavy Metal band Heathen will release the ten year anniversary reissue of The Evolution of Chaos due out 31st January 2020. The album was a comeback album for the band and was a return to form that saw them tour the world on the strength of the album. The new edition of the album, due out via Mascot Records, will be available on CD/DVD, 2LP and digitally with a previously unreleased bonus track ‘Seasons of Purgatory’. The CD/DVD will be accompanied by a 2 hour ‘Making of’ documentary on the album as well as a live performance from 2009s Thrash Domination, Japan. The band has just released a new lyric video for ‘Control By Chaos’. Continue reading
Ok, laying my cards down on the table. I, Hans Lopez, fully admit that I don’t think I’ve encountered a Vader release that I didn’t enjoy. The way they combine brutal riffs, mind-flaying solos, and Nürburgring speeds just totally speaks my musical language. It’s the reason I’m willing to die on the sword for Slayer or will always go to bat for classic Sepultura. I’m a man of simple tastes. Continue reading
You cannot really put into words what Exodus has meant to Thrash Metal. Without their contribution, we’d have a lot of Heavy Metal thunder, but no lightning to ride. The band has had its share of ups and downs and only in the last half of their career have they even had the same lineup on albums more than once, as was this incarnation of the bad did in 1989. With legend, but problem child Paul Baloff dismissed after masterwork Bonded By Blood, Steve “Zetro” Souza had settled in and down as the frontman and vocalist. Band leader Gary Holt kept an iron fist on the writing in these days, and with good reason. His riff style and due diligence in songcraft helped give the band their pivotal third album, Fabulous Disaster (Relativity, Music For Nations). Continue reading