Gothenburg, Sweden. A city with an illustrious place in the history of metal with it’s famous melodic death metal scene. Breaking apart from the sea of soaring harmonised guitar melodies lies upcoming thrashers Stormdeath who recently unleashed their debut LP Time to Destroy.
The first thing that’s striking about Time to Destroy is the sound. The guitars have a fuzzy quality which when paired with the ambient effects on the vocals, result in a very old school sound reminiscent of the debuts of many of thrash’s forefathers (think Slayer’s Show No Mercy or Kreator’s Endless Pain). The album opens with “We Are the Devils” which is a pretty standard thrash affair. High speed alternate-picked low string pedal tones – check. Power chords aplenty – check. Shouted vocals (both lead and backup) – check. It’s a good song to nod your head to for a few minutes but afterwards, there’s more of the same to come.
Therein lies the rub with Time to Destroy. All of the songs exhibit more of the same style of music with little variation or originality. There’s morsels of variety that break the palm-muted sixth string and power chord-based riffing such as the higher-pitched ideas in “Accursed”, clean arpeggios and more NWOBHM-inspired riffs in “Dreamwalker”. The album’s closer “Gatlingun” also stands out because of its sheer rapid-fire velocity, like that of the titular weapon and a catchy chorus that’s pretty difficult to not headbang to.
Overall, Stormdeath’s debut LP Time to Destroy is pretty average to me. The band has a stand out old school sound that harks back to the rough quality of the mid-80s thrash classics. However the music sounds like more worship of the thrash forefathers as opposed to sounding inspired by them. To clarify, Time to Destroy is not a bad album by any means, it just sounds rather run-of-the-mill and unoriginal. Make no mistake that Stormdeath are a band with plenty of potential, they just need to find their voice.
Highlights: “We Are the Devils”, “Accursed”, “Dreamwalker” and “Gatlingun”
Time to Destroy is out now