Release DetailsLABEL Megaforce Records
RELEASED ON 11/11/2003
Oppressing the Masses/Torture Tactics (Split CD)
posted on 12/2003 By:
What can be said about Vio-lence that hasn’t been said a million times before, and that hasn’t already been recorded in the annals of metal history? They were one of the original Bay Area thrash metal bands (alongside Testament, Exodus, Death Angel, Forbidden, and Possessed), and since their initial demise, their albums have become some of the most sought-after items for fans new and old. While rumors of the reissue of their debut (and arguably best) album, Eternal Nightmare, have run rampant since their short-lived (2001 – 2003) reunion, it is their equally impressive sophomore effort Oppressing the Masses that has finally been reissued first, packaged with 1991’s near-impossible-to-find Torture Tactics EP. Aside from new packaging, there seems to be little new to offer here (no remastering, video clips, etc.). But then again, who really needs all those extra frills when you get 11 tracks of classic Bay Area thrash (the 12th track being a live version of “Officer Nice”, on the Torture Tactics side)? You know the songs. “Profit” kicks things off with a mid-tempo intro before unleashing the thrash for the rest of the track. The same can be said of “Officer Nice”, featuring blistering leads and sing-along chorus. And so on it goes, track after track of classic, headbanging thrash metal. The Torture Tactics tracks include the aforementioned live recording of “Officer Nice” and the so-uncharacteristic-it-seems-like-a-cover-song “Dicks of Death”. The remaining tracks, “Gutter Slut” and “Torture Tactics”, are outtakes from the Oppressing sessions. I could go on and on about the songs here and the legacy of Vio-lence, and I probably should for the benefit of the younger crowd who may have never heard Vio-lence before, but it would still feel like preaching to the choir. Long-time fans should pick this up just so they can stop wearing out their valuable original pressings; new fans should pick this up to discover one of the great bands of our time that has surely inspired most of the bands they listen to today. After that, just wait patiently for the forthcoming live DVD and imminent Eternal Nightmare reissue.
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