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Suicidal Angels - Years of Aggression

Label: NoiseArt
Format: Download
Released: 2019
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 8.5/10


Chugging, muted, low E-centric riffs, non-specifically disgruntled lyrics about war, death, hate, and liars - - with occasional F-bombs, ballsy shouted vocals, double-bass drums with noisy cymbals; Suicidal Angels are all about the Thrash from the good old days. Press Play, grit your teeth, and get your head moving; it’s that simple. With tempos varying from mid to fast, SA tap the same rich vein as classic Testament, classic Sepultura, classic Megadeth, classic Slayer, Helstar, Dust Bolt, Evil Invaders, classic Flotsam and Jetsam.

 


Guitarist/singer Nick Melissourgos clearly favors guitars over vox. He has a great sounding voice, and his Greek accent suits the music perfectly, but the vocal sections of the songs are always the least interesting, as if they were the last bit added. This album really pops when it comes to the breakdowns - - the mosh parts - - and the featured riffs. Kudos to the production and the artists for getting such a knife-edged tone to the instruments. The rhythm and lead guitars apply the perfect amounts of polish and detailing to the armor-plated exterior. The evil single-note Jeff Hanneman (ex-Slayer, RIP)-esque riffs are boss, guaranteed to pull you back when your focus drifts. The leads are full of raucous chaos and disruption, combining technical shred with speaker-smashing mayhem. All of this works well because it’s propelled by a solid-state, machine-precise rhythm guitar engine.
“Years of Aggression” ends up a bit top-heavy, with “Endless War” and “Born of Hate” leading things off, but they do save the very best, “The Sacred Dance with Chaos,” for the grand finale.

 
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