FEATURE: Facing Life Without Slayer

Slayer, photo credit Gary Alcock

From the first day of December 2019, we enter a dark, horrifying new era. Life without Slayer.

Sorry. Life without SLAAAAAYYYERRR!!!

There, that’s better.

From the moment I discovered Slayer on a compilation album called Speed Kills back in 1985, my life was changed forever. Just the sound of their name was enough. Everything you needed to know about the band encapsulated in two perfect syllables, especially when screamed at an ear-splitting volume or when chanted with thousands of other like-minded blood-hungry psychopaths. Continue reading

EP REVIEW: Black Talon – Existential

Formed in 2010, Edinburgh thrashers Black Talon follow up their 2015 debut Endless Realities (Wasted State Records) with independently released five-track EP Existential. Sounding like a modern Scottish version of the 1980s Bay Area, this short release is replete with riffs and melodies similar to the likes of Forbidden, Testament and Dark Angel with vocals owing a debt to Vio-Lence and UK thrashmonkeys Acid Reign. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Anacrusis Reissues – Manic Impressions and Screams and Whispers

After re-releasing their first two albums back in September, Metal Blade have now moved onto the remastered and repackaged third and fourth albums from St. Louis progressive thrash act Anacrusis. Continue reading

FESTIVAL REVIEW: Damnation Festival 2019: Live at Leeds University

When Axl Rose waxed romantically about cold November rain in back in 1992, he clearly wasn’t singing about Leeds on a Saturday morning. A cold, depressing day darkened by oppressive black clouds showering their misery relentlessly from above, there is nothing romantic about Leeds city centre. However, above the sound of rain pelting against umbrella canopies, and cars splashing through ankle-high lakes of dirty water, there is hope. Somewhere out there is Damnation Festival. Continue reading

REVIEW: Annihilator – Archer Nation: Live at KK’s Steel Mill, Wolverhampton

A former car factory, KK’s Steel Mill sits at the heart of industrial Wolverhampton and is owned, as the name suggests, by former Judas Priest guitarist and general all-round local legend KK Downing. This latest West Midlands rock venue opened its doors last year and, apart from the impressively sized stage area and the massive wall banner showing the artwork to Priest’s 1986 album Turbo, looks to have changed very little from when it was built back in 1903. Continue reading

Australian Thrash Legend Peter Hobbs of Hobbs Angel of Death Has Died

Sad news to report as Peter Hobbs, founder and namesake of Australian Thrash legend of Hobbs Angel Of Death has passed away. He was 58 years old. He died this morning at his home in Queensland, Australia. A pioneer in the Aussie metal scene of the 1980s, Hobbs first appeared with Tyrus before founding Hobbs Angel of Death. That bands’ self-titled debut album was released in 1988 through Steamhammer. The band dissolved soon after the release, but seven years later, it reformed to release its second album called Inheritance. After reforming in 2002 the band signed a four-album deal with Modern Invasion Music in 2003. Their last studio album, Heaven Bled, came out in 2016. We send out condolences out to Peter’s family, friends and fans at this time. Continue reading