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Testament: Demonic (reissue)

Kind of strange at first hearing Testament's take on death metal with this 1997 release Demonic. The thrash veterans have been around for quite some time, delivering top-notch metal powered by sizzling twin guitar work and the husky vocal shouts of Chuck Billy. Here, Billy is almost unrecognizable as he spews forth plenty of dry death metal growls, so forget the high pitched wailings and the deep mid range shouts. Funny enough, for the most part the formula works. Joining him on this release is monster drummer Gene Hoglan (Strapping Young Lad, Dark Angel, Death, Old Man's Child), longtime guitarist Eric Peterson (Dragonlord), and bassist Derrick Ramirez.

There's plenty of heavy death/thrash winners here, like the grinding "Ten Thousand Thrones", the rampaging extreme metal of "Demonic Refusal" and "Murky Waters", plus the relentless power of "The Burning Times". Faithful Testament listeners might miss the dual guitar attack of earlier albums (Alex Skolnick was not in the band at this time), but Peterson does a fine job by himself and proves to be a master of the death metal riff. The presence of Hoglan of course adds plenty of bombastic and virtuoso drum patterns, as the guy has built a career out of adding his percussive might to many classic metal bands over the years. So, check out this Spitfire Records reissue of a solid death metal album from an unlikely source.

Track Listing
1. Demonic Refusal
2. The Burning Times
3. Together As One
4. Jun-Jun
5. John Doe
6. Murky Waters
7. Hatreds Rise
8. Distorted Lives
9. New Eyes Of Old
10. Ten Thousand Thrones
11. Nostrovia

Added: June 9th 2006
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Testament Website
Hits: 4056
Language: english

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