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Atrophy - Chemical Dependency

Chemical Dependency
by James Brizuela at 25 June 2019, 6:38 AM

Legendary thrash band ATROPHY, out of Arizona, return with the reissue from their 1989 demo “Chemical Dependency”. This demo is being released for the first time on CD. The reissue contains the original six tracks that appeared on the demo, as well as, four bonus songs from their first trek into Canada. The thing that is most awesome about being able to listen to ATROPHY’s original demo is being taken back to a time where thrash metal was pure and raw. The demo kicks off with the title track, “Chemical Dependency”. The song kicks in with some atmospheric sounds you would hear coming from a universal monster flick. What follows is an insane attack of drumming and wailing guitars. There is something very special about being able to listen to a band’s work that has stood the test of time. ATROPHY has the pure thrash sound that brings with it a punishment of punk and metal styles that coexist.

Rest In Pieces” doesn’t let up with the brutal thrash sounds, as the wailing guitars attack every sense. You can’t be mad at the Tom Araya-like vocal scream that emits from “Preacher, Preacher”. I would go so far as to say that this track encapsulates some SLAYER like toughness to it. But with a lot more technical guitar soloing happening. I would have to say it is quite a bummer that ATROPHY broke up so many years ago when they were at the height of their raw thrash sound. But it is quite a treat to be able to listen to their original work in all its glory once again. “Suicide Pact” brings with it those chanting vocals that everyone loves about thrash metal. “Product of the Past” slows things down a bit, but still delivers on the brutality of the demo.

There is some more fantastic guitar soloing that is showcased in this track. And of course, finally, the fastest more punk-like song off the demo, “Beer Bong”. I love a good skate thrash song that talks about drinking. Even coming in at only two minutes long, the track delivers another beautiful guitar solo. Overall, the demo holds strong and showcases the beauty of the eighties thrash that helped shaped the genre. The live tracks haven’t had much work done to them so it’s hard to appreciate them as much, but I would say it’s a good bonus to be able to listen to them. ATROPHY had an amazing career leading up to their split, and it is good to see them back. Check out this reissue. It is sure to reawaken the love for the earlier raw thrash sounds that we all fell in love with.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Chemical Dependency
2. Rest In Pieces
3. Preacher, Preacher
4. Suicide Pact
5. Product of the Past
6. Beer Bong
7. Killing Machine (live in Toronto 1989)
8. Rest In Pieces (live in Toronto 1989)
9. Product of the Past (live in Toronto 1989)
10. Beer Bong (live in Toronto 1989)
Tim Kelly – Drums
Scott Heller – Bass
Brian Zimmerman – Vocals
Denny Seefieldt – Guitar
Bobby Stein – Guitar
Record Label: Vic Records


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