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Vicious Rumors - Razorback Killers

Label: SPV
Format: CD download
Released: 2011
Reviewed By: Mark Gromen
Rating: 7/ 10

It was bound to happen, with all the name metal acts releasing great music at the start of 2011, a bit of a toe stubber. Another album, Geoff Thorpe goes through another batch of personnel, most notably a new vocalist in Brian Allen (of the short lived Malice reunion). Thorpe has come up with some searing solos, just wish there were vocal melodies to match. Not sure when VR became an aggressive thrash band, their classics always being a tweener mix of melody and speed, but "Razorback Blade" features an insane amount of riffs. Ditto 'Axe To Grind'. Allen has the ability to hit the high notes (he was in Malice, remember), but spends most of his time in a gruff, lower register. 'Blood Stained Sunday' begins as if a moody brooding number, but clicks over to mid-tempo chugger that ends with cliched lyric "working out the kinks of steel, with Vicious Rumors at the wheel". While 'Pearl Of Wisdom' is an attempt at an old school (love) power ballad.


Love the opening guitar on 'All I Want Is You', a definite classic Crimson Glory vibe. The title, 'Let The Garden Burn', an ode to Germany's Hellbanger's Open Air festival, borrows liberally from Wretch's long-standing un-official fest anthem (and more energetic tune), 'Make This Garden Burn'. Speaking of "heard it before moments", 'Rite Of Devastation' kicks off similar to VR's own 'Down To The Temple', before galloping to a more aggressive turn. Acoustic guitar and a chugging (steam engine) characterize the mid-paced closer 'Deal With The Devil'.

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