Mantic Ritual - _Executioner_
(Nuclear Blast, 2009)
by: Jackie Smit (
Compared to their peers in Century Media and Earache, Nuclear Blast have exercised remarkable restraint in not signing up every thrash act their A&R suits could hand a pen and paper to, especially given that in recent times thrash couture can once again be proudly sported in places other than fancy dress parties. Still, with the amount of talent floating around -- even in a scene that for all intents and purposes is doing its level best to breathe life into a dead horse -- you'd wonder what would have inspired anyone to place their bets on a band like Mantic Ritual. Once known as Meltdown in certain circles, there's never any doubting this Pittsburgh quartet's sincere devotion to their craft, but sadly that's about all they have going for them. Where acts like Municipal Waste and SSS make up for whatever they lack in originality with oodles of snarling, belligerent 'tude, Mantic Ritual sound like four buddies who have yet to start taking their band seriously. Some may find this unceremonious approach refreshing; in reality it leads to tracks like "Murdered to Death" and "Double the Blood", which frankly possess all of the memorable qualities of an everyday bowel movement.
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