Whiplash - _Messages in Blood - The Early Years_
(Displeased, 1999)
by: Aaron McKay (6 out of 10)
Raw, mean, and powerful are simply the first of a whole string of congruous and befitting adjectives that come to mind when hearing Whiplash's historical catalogue of material. I am grateful to Displeased for getting this into the hands of the metal-listening community. To get the negativity out of the way, I might point out to those of you reading this, while hearing the progression of a band's sound by doubling up songs on a release is -very- interesting, it makes it somewhat difficult to tolerate on multiple listens. For instance, "Spit on Your Grave", "Stirrin' the Cauldron", "Respect the Dead" and "The Burning of Atlanta" are all repeated on this disc. Like I said, I am happy to hear Whiplash's career maturation taking form on _Messages in Blood - The Early Years_, but simply keep in mind that you'll have at least four songs repeated on this nineteen track, seventy-seven minute CD. Some highlights include a particularly rough, but done in fantastic fashion, "Eternal Eyes" caught live in 1985 in Dover, New Jersey. Also, chalk me up as a fan of "War Monger", once again, from a -very noticeable- live performance, this time at New York's CBGB's. If you still are of the opinion that Metallica's _Kill 'Em All_ or Exodus' _Bonded by Blood_ are the pentacle of all thrash, and you've yet to be exposed to Whiplash, I might suggest hot-footing it down to your local CD store to snatch a copy of _Messages in Blood - The Early Years_. By the way, rumour has it that Whiplash will re-unite for a reunion record on Massacre Records entitled _Thrashback_ with a reunion tour for the lucky bastards in Europe only.

Contact: whiplash@mail.com

(article published 15/6/1999)

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