Destruction - _Thrash Anthems_
(AFM Records, 2007)
by: Yiannis Stefanis (5.5 out of 10)
Destruction is one of the first bands I ever really got hooked up with, and with that in mind, you should all expect this to be one of the most biased reviews you will ever read from me. Yes, back in 1989 in the Athenian music haven called Rodon Club, I had the honour of attending one of the best thrash metal gigs ever: the band's last (at the time) appearance with Schmier as frontman.

After the release of a few albums that didn't really manage to make a huge impression on me, with the only exception being 1990's _Cracked Brain_, the duo Schmier (bass / vocals) and Mike (guitars) decided to once again join forces. The result? The four albums that the band released from 2000 onwards, with the exception of the quite decent _Inventor of Evil_ (2005), cannot really be compared with classic releases such as _Sentence of Death_ and _Infernal Overkill_. So what did the band decide to do then? Well, instead of putting all their efforts in recording new material, they re-recorded some of their most classic songs, added a couple of new compositions and named their "new album" _Thrash Anthems_.

Now, I realise how negative I probably come across, that every Destruction fan will agree with me that apart from being one of the most technical European thrash metal outfits of the '80s, the trio was renowned for that characteristic sound that gave soul and extra colour to their bombastic compositions. With the intervention of modern technology and a few rearrangements in the refrains and melodic themes, most compositions now sound too damn polished and soulless -- perfect example being the horrid new version of my personal favourites "Reject Emotions" and "Curse the Gods". Ironically enough, both "Profanity" and "Deposition (Your Heads Will Roll)", the new compositions which were probably added to lure some of the band's oldest fans such as myself, were a breath of fresh air, together with the very interesting version of "Cracked Brain" which was never sung before by Schmier.

Guys, things are very simple here: Schmier and Mike are definitely far more mature as musicians than they were back in the '80s, and they are still capable of creating good quality thrash, so I think that they should get their act together and do that, rather than trying to cash in on their glorious past. My advice: feel free to invest in _Thrash Anthems_ if you really believe that it is a release worth having -- I personally don't.


(article published 12/1/2007)

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