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In Malice’s Wake - Light Upon the Wicked

In Malice’s Wake
Light Upon the Wicked
by Nick Webb at 29 December 2015, 10:30 PM

Speed, anger and aggression seem to be the watch words for Melbourne thrashers IN MALICE’S WAKE. The 2nd full length offering from the Aussie four-piece continues in their vein of turbo-charged thrash metal.

“Light Upon the Wicked” is full of incredibly high speed riffs, and heavy breaks, all set behind guttural vocals which aren’t quite sung, but not quite shouted… There are more melodic sections which appear from time to time; but don’t expect them to come with any slowing down of the pace. From the moment instrumental intro “Onward Human Suffering” kicks off, these guys are at full pace- grabbing the listener by the throat and not letting go.

Guitar solos are brief and fast-paced with no real space for extended technical flourishes but here that doesn’t seem to be a problem, as extended sections would detract from the pace. Instead, there are sections of incredibly tight riffing, and twin guitar melodies. While the songs are all phenomenally fast, full of energy and incredibly raw sounding, the album suffers from what a great many thrash groups fall prone to; releasing a collection of ten near identical songs with no slowing up of the pace or really changing anything about the format or structure. The subjects the songs cover are the same as pretty much any other thrash band since the early 80s (violence, damnation, blood, suffering etc), While the songs are good, and as a whole the album is enjoyable, it’s all well-trodden ground with nothing new necessarily added to the mix.

That being said, if you want a well-written, incredibly tight, high speed aural assault full of anger to blow out your speakers with, IN MALICE’S WAKE have produced one of the best underground thrash albums I’ve heard for a while. The intensity of the pace and the energy mixed with their occasional melodic sensibility suggest that it’s only a matter of time before these guys smash their way out of Australia and start making waves elsewhere as well.

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Onward Human Suffering
2. Bear the Cross
3. In Darkness
4. Light Upon the Wicked
5. From Beyond
6. Hear the Howls
7. Annihilation Frost
8. A Sign of the Times
9. Indoctrinator
10. The Halls of the Damned
Lineup:
Shaun Farrugia – Guitars/Vocals
Mark Farrugia – Drums
Leigh Bartley – Lead Guitar
Karl Watterson - Bass
Record Label: Punishment 18 Records
     


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