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Morbid Saint - Spectrum of Death (Reissue)

Morbid Saint
Spectrum of Death (Reissue)
by Darren Duffy at 03 August 2021, 1:00 AM

MORBID SAINT formed in Sheboygan, Wisconsin during 1984 evolving into an intense blackened thrash outfit drawing comparison to early KREATOR, SODOM, DARK ANGEL, SLAYER, DEMOLITION HAMMER etc. The band recorded their debut in 1988 under the guidance of DEATH manager Eric Greif, who would produce and release the album on his own imprint Edge Records in 1989 under the title “Lock Up Your Children”. The recording was then licensed to Mexican label Avanzada Metαlica, who renamed and released it one year later as the now familiar “Spectrum of Death”.  MORBID SAINT would eventually split-up in 1994, to later reform in early 2010, announcing their reunion with a new line-up releasing a compilation album “Thrashaholic” featuring 4 new songs. This new remastered High Roller edition comes as a vinyl pressing limited to 500, in black, bone and transparent clear/ red marbled vinyl.

The album opens with a barrage of raw heavy riffs and pummeling drums. The vocals of Pat Lind are a demonic blackened rasp reminiscent of Mille Petrozza in delivery. Beginning with “Lock Up Your Children” there is an immediate intensity that will not waver over the next 32 minutes, this an outing exploring the more extreme end of the thrash genre. “Burned at the Stake” opens with furious blaze of alternate picking and erupts into a full speed thrash assault, this will be the default setting for the majority of “Spectrum of Death”.Assassin” is a lengthier outing transitioning through multiple sections in a more considered approach incorporating a range of tempos showcasing the twin guitar precision of Jay Visser and Jim Fergades. Next up is “Damien”, a back-to-basics frenetic hellish soundtrack to “The Omen” which segues seamlessly into “Crying for Death” maintaining the extreme pace. There is a brief calming of the storm in the form of the cleanly picked interlude “Spectrum of Death” which leads into “Scars”, another lengthy track which settles into a mainly mid paced heavy grinding beast although it does explode into bursts of full speed aggression. The appropriately named “Beyond the Gates of Hell” draws the album to a close with a series of wailing guitar solos and bruising heavy riffage over the thundering rhythm section of Tony Paletti and Lee Reynolds.
In conclusion: “Spectrum of Death” is often referred to as an underground classic and will be found on many a list of top-rated thrash albums.  MORBID SAINT have certainly created an album that is worthy of that reputation, and this is an excellent offering of intense blackened thrash.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Lock Up Your Children
2. Burned at the Stake
3. Assassin
4. Damien
5. Crying for Death
6. Spectrum of Death
7. Scars
8. Beyond the Gates of Hell
Pat Lind - Vocals
Jim Fergades - Guitar
Jay Visser - Guitar
Tony Paletti - Bass
Lee Reynolds - Drums
Record Label: High Roller Records


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Edited 06 December 2022

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