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The ninth studio album from German Thrash Metal legends Necronomicon , titled Unleashed Bastards is set to be released on Sept 28th via El Puerto Records. A relentless, up-tempo thrashing masterpiece from start to finish, the album is an excellent hybrid of the barbaric, ultra-fast, ultra-violent musical style of late 80's thrash metal, combined with the capabilities of modern-day production. With frontman Volker "Freddy" Fredrich's harsh blackened vocals, the driving rhythm section, thundering double bass, and screaming guitar riffs and leads that incorporate some Neo-Classical elements, the band have developed a precise, and technical chemistry together as musicians that speaks for itself. Bands among the "Big 4" of Teutonic Thrash Metal:  Kreator, Sodom, Destruction, Tankard, come to mind when describing their massive sound. 

Necronomicon was formed in 1983 as a punk rock band, releasing a lo -fi demo tape titled Total Rejection. The band was heavily influenced by UK Hardcore Punk acts such as Discharge, the Exploited, and GBH. As the years went on, their style gradually became more metal as they became influenced by bands like Metallica and Slayer and by the time their
self-titled album was released in 1986, and sophomore album "Apocalyptic Nightmare" in 1987, Necronomicon had developed a dark, immensely fast style of metal that was arguably among some of the most extreme music of its time, featuring the shrieking/growled vocals not uncommon in the early black metal bands of the same time period, such as Venom, Bathory and Celtic Frost. With their influences being as evident as they are in the band’s repertoire, Unleashed Bastards serves as an excellent example of how much they have evolved together as a band over the years, and proof that Thrash Metal is still alive and well in 2018, and it’s not going anywhere.

"Everything is there; from punk to old school, from speed to flawless Thrash Metal. A full menu," says frontman and founding member Volker 'Freddy' Fredrich. While primarily a thrash metal album, it is a unique hybrid of different sub-genres. Featuring the double guitar harmonies found in bands among the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, the rapid-fire tempos of Hardcore Punk such as in "Religion Live Fast", Blackened vocals, and the occasional melodic chorus that hints at Power Metal such as the one featured on "Malevolent". What stood out to me about this album was the strong influence of classical music and the effortless application of it to a thrash metal context. At times the band would transition from a classic double time metal feel into a more melodic section which featured exotic scales and shredding, Neo Classical leads and riffs. The title track of the album is a perfect example of this, as well as "Personal Enemy". Overall this album is the complete package, simultaneously old school and modern. It is raw, yet technical. Chaotic, yet melodic. I can only hope that this band will do a tour in the states and more metalheads will have the opportunity to see this cult thrash act play live and discover them, if they have not already. 

As always, rock on my friends!      Hunnypot Approved!     Overall Rating:  9 out of 10

Artist: Necronomicon,  Album: Unleashed Bastards,  Release Date: September 28TH, 2018 (Pre-order HERE),  LabelEl Puerto Records GbR

Neil Metcalf

Writer - Los Angeles

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