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Astharoth - Resurrection - Beginning of the End

Resurrection - Beginning of the End
by Kevin Lewis at 17 June 2020, 6:03 PM

ASTHAROTH is back! Formed in Poland in 1988 by Jarek Tatarek, the band worked hard to honor their heroes, thrash metal innovators from around the globe, including many from the San Francisco Bay area like TESTAMENT, EXODUS, and DEATH ANGEL. In 1990, the guitarists decided to move to the Bay Area in order to get closer to the sound they wanted to cultivate. Unfortunately, the rise of grunge music killed the interest in metal from most labels. Though they worked hard at it, they only managed to put out four demos. They officially disbanded in 2000, but have risen like a phoenix from the ashes.

The first and last tracks, “Resurrection” and “Beginning Of The End” respectively, are instrumentals. “Resurrection” has is a gentle little piece with both guitars playing and nothing else. “Beginning Of The End” takes the album out on a much heavier note. With a slight nod to industrial for the intro, it kicks in to a full-on auditory assault. It wavers back and forth throughout the rest of the song.

Though this is not really a true concept album, there is a theme. It appears that ASTHAROTH  is not too pleased with the way religions and royalty have treated the world. “Perfect Butchery” is a look at the differences in opinion from both sides of a holy war or crusade. “Denial And Hate” detail the overthrow of an unjust king. “Catastrophobia” is a warning to the future of how a society ended. “Between Rage And Despair” again rages at deity. The key thing through all of these songs is the ability to do everything from thrash your face off to slowing it down and letting the gloomy, doom filled nuance take you on a journey through the mind of the creative force behind this entire record.

Mothman” is definitely a guitar driven song about facing a demon whether inner or real, you figure out for yourself. “The Man, The Myth, The Mystery” is listed as a tribute to Nikola Tesla. Some called him a genius, some a madman. I think he fits the overall theme very well! Continuing the move into more modern times, “Lunacy By Design” talks of being trapped by technology into a perpetual Hell. With lyrics like “Enslaved perception/Delivered to your screen/Spellbound by deception/Infected by fear” it feels like they are speaking directly to the addiction social media holds on many people. It’s called the endless scroll. Finishing off the album is “Awaiting A Miracle”, a thrashy tune about being alone at the edge of time and left out of the world and bereft of happiness.

Jarek Tatarek performs this entire album on his own. He is a talented musician with vision and creativity. The credits read that he programmed the drum tracks, not played them. With the way the drums are tracked, he is going to need someone with a lot of speed and endurance to play live if they want to take this show on tour. This album has a little bit of everything, from Sludge Metal to Thrash Metal, mid-tempo drumming to blast beats, gentle guitar rhythms to pounding dual attacks with IRON MAIDEN caliber trade off solos. His guitar work and drum programming are admirable and his vocals often remind me of the rasp heard from Mark Tornillo, current lead singer of ACCEPT, or their former lead singer, Udo Dirkschneider. This album is worth a listen and would be fun to see on a stage.

Songwriting:  7
Musicianship:  8
Memorability:  7
Production:  7

3 Star Rating

1. Resurrection
2. Perfect Butchery
3. Denial And Hate
4. Catastrophobia
5. Between Rage And Despair
6. Mothman
7. The Man, The Myth, The Mystery
8. Lunacy By Design
9. Awaiting A Miracle
10. Beginning Of The End
Jarek Tatarek - Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Drum programming
Record Label: Independent


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