Ritual Carnage - _The Birth of Tragedy_
by: Alvin Wee (
This slab of thrashing madness merits an 8/10 or higher but for the somewhat annoying post-classic Slayer style of shouted vocals. Guitarist Wataru Yamada is more satisfyingly accompanied vocally on his new King's Evil album [CoC #58], and I probably won't be alone in making that comparison. This minor gripe aside, _The Birth of Tragedy_ stands together with the previous two albums as perhaps the best old-school speed/thrash issuing from the States. Needless to say, originality isn't a trait most highly prized in these circles, and as usual, this Japamerican combo rip more than a few pages out of Slayer's metal gospel on their way to perdition. Face-ripping hooks jump out and tear at unsuspecting listeners (see "Fall of Empire" or "Grave New World") in an entirely unprecedented way, a testament of the band's hard work between albums. The up-front production certainly does nothing to soften the impact of this sledgehammer, and while, in my opinion, the material never quite attains the raw charm or terrifying blackness of _The Highest Law_, this power trio pack enough punch to send countless other retro-clones fleeing for cover. Repeated listens pay off, and dedicated listeners will find this compact piece of mayhem yielding far more satisfaction than expected on first listen. Overall a killer piece of work once again, and a great companion to the equally -- if not more -- killer King's Evil album if you can find it.
(article published 1/9/2002)
All contents copyright 1995-2016 their individual creators. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
All opinions expressed in Chronicles of Chaos are opinions held at the time of writing by the individuals expressing them.
They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of anyone else, past or present.