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The Crucifier (GR) - (2017) Voices in My Head - 9.5/10
#1

Artist: The Crucifier (GR)
Release: Voices in My Head (2017)
Rating: 9.5/10

The Crucifier is a thrash metal band from Athens, Greece that has been around since 1995 with 2 full-length albums to their career. Their sound lies between bands such as Exodus, Testament, and Razor alongside European thrash bands such as Kreator, Destruction and a bit of Sodom; some riffs reminded me of Decision Day, Agent Orange and M16; classic genre-defining albums; while the vocals have a slight hint of Razor albeit with a deeper pitch and harsher flow.
The album is a seamless assault from start to finish with drums sounding like mortar ordnance while guitars sounding like buzzsaws as the vocals compliment this adrenaline-pumping release; unleashing the hard, dark lyrics with roars and raw anger. The tone of the album is cynical and aggressive as if giving a speech on the negatives of aspects such as religion and society but also encouraging their destruction to some of the most heart-pumping solos ever committed to disc. Finally, like the thrash titans of yore, The Crucifier also has a punk-y edge to the sound (most classic thrashers have their own ways of implementing this) that is achieved by the way vocals are delivered; bursts of roars and sermons.

While nowadays there are many thrash metal bands on the scene; most influenced by classic acts. They don't really add anything new in terms of sound to the genre. However, Crucifier injects their own take on the tried and true sound of the 1980s by adding more aggression and speed musically. The title track is an example of this as it kicks into high gear from the first second; firing off punchy riffs on cue with the verbal shot to the head, transitioning to a piercing solo that thrash legends Razor would have been proud of. Forgive & Don't Forget on the other hand reminded me of Tired and Red by Sodom for its energetic drive with guitars cutting through the mix; right to the middle mark when the build-up intensifies with every minute when everyone fires on all cylinders; hammering the message deep. A good thrash band must always have a way to get into the listener's head differing only in the means of achieving this; The Crucifier does this with the intoxicating anger of the instrumentals that infects the brain and manipulates it through the lyrics.
The only issue I have with the album is selecting a highlight for it since I enjoyed all tracks on offer. Each one has its own standout moments and a unique brand of aggressive melody. However, I did replay Voices in My Head many times for the headbanging harmonies and a satisfying solo that hits all the right nerves. Finally, the record itself has a genuine, organic feeling; complimenting raw aggression and achieving the desired impact and mood of darkness and hostility the way old school thrash did.

Overall, Voices In My Head is a powerful record with muscled old-school thrash guitars, dark lyrics being narrated by vocals that give new meaning to organic aggression. As any good classic thrash metal band does, The Crucifier goes straight to the point and meaning where every song puts its most aggressive foot forward; leading the listener on to intense, melodic grooves tying up all the loose ends to go on another attack. Finally, the record also showcases the 22-year-old band's accumulated experience which started when the thrash greats were most prominent; back when the genre was more in-tune with its' roots; the dark, cynical and aggressive part of metal where nothing was sacred and it was about fighting to make your point.

Any metalhead of today knows about the resurgence of old-school styled bands that draw influence of classic bands from NWOBHM, Hard-N-Heavy and of course thrash metal; trying to capture the sound and attitude of that era with mixed results. The Crucifier, however, is among the strongest contenders I saw; bringing back that raw aggression we crave and return to; with their own additions to the sound and fury.

A track off another album; didn't find any off this one.





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#2
These guys are also on Season of Mist. A very nice label putting out quality extreme metal. You ever checked this out, BeyondOsiris?
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#3
I have not, but I definitely will now. Thanks for the tag!
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#4
No problem, man.

Greece has a pretty stable metal scene. Even thrash metal is fairly good over there, whereas we've seen the jokes back home with the likes of Thrash or Die. Endless Recovery and Suicidal Angels are also decent.

I'm going to bump the general thrash metal thread, too, but do check out this nice list on Greek thrash metal. I completely agree with Flames ranking above them all, especially if you get off on Sodom and Razor vibes.
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