Written by Alex Stojanovic
United By Hatred
Ripping You Off Blind
Release Date: November 10, 2017
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Schmier - Bass & vocals Mike Sifringer - Guitars Vaaver Dramowicz - Drums
Now 10 years later, the band will be releasing the sequel to the compilation, aptly titled Thrash Anthems II, but this time around, the song selection was chosen by the fans and they're songs that are rarely to never played live. The band also teamed up with PledgeMusic for this release. At this point, Infernal Overkill has been re-recorded in its entirety at different points with "Thrash Attack" being the only track that doesn't appear on either Thrash Anthems album, but has been re-recorded as a bonus track for Under Attack, and Eternal Devastation is just about entirely re-recorded over the course of the two albums, with the exception of "Upcoming Devastation". Whether that track will be re-recorded at some point in the future remains to be seen.
The modern production with a raw and gritty touch works extremely well, and gives tracks like "Confused Mind", "Satan's Vengeance", "United By Hatred" and "Black Death" a huge kick in the ass, making the riffs even more menacing and crushing. A rarity that appears is "Frontbeast" from the Bestial Invasion Of Hell EP. I was really excited when I saw that "Satan's Vengeance" would appear on the album because it's been one of my favourites for a few years now.
Special guest appearances have been a common occurrance on the albums since All Hell Breaks Loose, whether it'd be backing vocals or guest solos. For this album, there's guest vocals from past members like Oliver Kaiser, Andrew Grieder and Tommy Sandmann on tracks like "Dissatisfied Existence" and "Ripping You Off Blind". It's great to know that there's real good vibes and friendships still going on between the current and past members. Also featured on here are Ol Drake (ex-Evile), Michael Amott from Arch Enemy, and V.O. Pulver from Poltergeist, who has been a frequent guest on the last several studio albums and who has also handled production duties on this album, and they're all providing guest solos on select tracks.
With Destruction, I love the original recordings of the classics, but given that Schmier's vocals have gotten better and better over the last 15 years, the musicianship has grown over the last 35 years and that there's a whole new generation of fans coming out to the shows but with very little to absolutely no success in finding the original albums, re-recording the classics is a smart move for all these reasons, and the final result sounds absolutely killer and I know many fans will enjoy it. Like I said, some fans might not be too fond of this move. Well, if it is to you, then steer away.
Highs: A great compilation of Destruction classics that give you an even larger kick in the ass with the modern production.
Lows: If re-recordings of classics doesn't appeal to you, don't listen. Stick with the original recordings.
Final Rating: 9/10