Monday, 4 February 2019

War Thrashed - Bienvenido a tu ejecución (2019)



Country: Colombia
Style: Thrash Metal
Rating: 6/10
Release Date: 2 Feb 2019
Sites: Facebook | Metal Archives

When a thrash metal band claims something like, Welcome to Your Execution, in whatever language they happen to speak, I'm ready to listen. That's a challenge and I'm waiting. Can Colombia's War Thrashed back up that challenge with their second album, following 2013's Into the Nightmare of Violence, which is recorded entirely in Spanish?

Well, not really, but they do churn out a fine racket and I enjoyed this album. Felipe Gonzalez's vocals are agreeably old school, very raw and reminiscent of the early eighties when thrash was as raw and extreme as it got. He's clearly been listening to early Destruction and he has those patented Schmier screams down.

Gonzalez is actually the new guy in the band, having joined as recently as 2013. Everyone else has been working together as War Thrashed since 2007 and a decade of getting used to each other has left them sounding notably tight, as well as able and very willing to throw intricate little breakdowns out there in between the fast-paced material.

They do like to mix up the pace a lot. As you might expect, there are a lot of breakneck sections where they get their heads down and blister onward, but there are also a lot of mid-paced sections where they don't slow down to slow but do notably lessen the pace. I wonder how that dynamic plays out in the pit. I'd be very interested in finding that out in person!

The downside for me isn't in the songs or the quality of the musicians but in the production. I was really digging more consistently fast paced tracks like Muerte inmiente and Invasión thrash, for instance, but, for some bizarre reason, the feet of drummer Stiven Berbeci are far more prominent in the mix than his hands, which meant that the pedals stood out far more than anything else and the songs suffer for that. Give me everything else the man is doing too, please; he plays those other drums and cymbals for a reason!

It's also a short album, just over 26 minutes in length, which makes it shorter even than Reign in Blood, which notoriously appeared in entirety on both sides of its cassette release because of that. I was just getting warmed up with the excellent final three tracks when the album ended, rather abruptly, I might add, when Hipnoreligion just ceases to be.

I'm tempted to seek out Into the Nightmare of Violence, but might not as that features a different vocalist, Bryan Rubiano. I liked Felipe Gonzalez's singing on this one and feel that it fits well with the band. So I'd just like the other half of Bienvenido a tu ejecución instead!

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