Razor To Oblivion
posted on 12/2009 By:
Do you like Kill ‘Em All? Do you like the first Bathory album? Do you like Discharge? Do you like to break shit? If you answered yes to any of the above, I have a record for you: Razor To Oblivion. This debut EP from Seattle’s Black Breath manages to capture the sound and the fury of the early eighties underground: Thrash, speed metal, first wave black metal and hardcore punk meet in a vicious, bloody circle pit, and much ass kicking results.
As the title track’s bruising punk metal chords hit my ears, my brain subconsciously anticipates hearing Quorthon’s caustic rasp bellow out some blasphemy, but instead I am met with Neil McAdams' tonally different, but equally caustic hardcore shouts. Once my brain reconciles the disparity, the track proves to be an enjoyable three minute, two riff thrasher. It is then quite a surprise on the Metallica meets Celtic Frost track, “Fatal Error,” when McAdams actually slips in a Quorthon impression during the song's bridge. “Beneath the Crust” features some stomping Anthrax-styled riffs before McAdams kicks off a blistering thrash break with a glorious, raw throated scream. The track shifts gears again, ending with a sinister chugging breakdown. “Murder” closes the proceedings in a slower, more brooding fashion highlighted by brief interplay between guitarists F. Funds and E. Wallace that reveals a heretofore un-hinted sense of melody.
Razor To Oblivion is a success in that its all too brief sixteen minute running time leaves me craving more. Black Breath is obviously not breaking any new ground, but they are successfully mining the eighties for rich veins of metallic inspiration. If you have room in your collection for one more retro act, dust off your patched denim jacket and your high top sneakers, and run down to the record store and demand Black Breath.
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