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Oppression – Scars 1988-1990

Scars 1988-1990
by Omnius D'Worgen at 30 June 2015, 10:28 PM

"Scars 1988-1990" is a 2015 compilation of various demos and EPs recorded by the Finnish thrash-metal band OPPRESSION in the years, you guessed it, 1988-1990.For those of you who have never heard of the band (a pretty condescending note in that sentence from a guy who only read about 'em a couple of hours ago, don't you think?), they were a pretty big deal in the Finnish underground in their day, touring and gigging  quite a lot throughout northern Europe in the late eighties and early nineties… and have done pretty much nothing noteworthy since.

 But we're here for the music – so pay attention! This five-piece band (sporting different vocalists over the years) have a very tight thrash metal sound, with many a palm-muted assault from the rhythm section as the vocalist shouts over the sonic bombardment. A resemblance to SLAYER has often been (rightly) pointed out.

However, the songs tend to wear on you after a while, as many of them seem very repetitive and unnecessarily long – and that being said while taking into account the genre's tendency for repetitiveness and lack of melody.

 But let's break it down for a second, because all musicians in the band are adequate at the very least – both vocalists perform very well (shining through the low-quality demo recording quite clearly), the guitarists are tight and the rhythm section, while not standing out as great, doesn't stand out negatively either.

 Musically there are many musical idea that, in and of themselves, are very interesting. Dark and heavy riffs, some pretty cool solos – even a really cool clean lead over heavy rhythm very close to SLAYER's "Seasons In The Abyss"… however, as a whole, the record mostly passed me by with little or no impact. The brain simply shuts it down as background noise.

 A compilation of an inactive band's demos from 25 years ago would raise many eyebrows at the best of times,  and when the music is mostly repetitive and overlong (with the demo-quality recording not helping, either), it begs the question if it should have been released at all. If you're ardent followers of everything thrash you might enjoy it – otherwise, I think it would be better if you invest your time elsewhere.

2 Star Rating

1. A Majesty, A Joker
2. Alone
3. For No Reason
4. Within Six Walls
5. Punishment From The Gods
6. No Day After
7. Opression
8. Into The Dark
9. Immortal Objector
10. Parasites
Santtu Laakso - Vocals
Mika Luoma - Vocals
Lare Nieminen - Guitars
Make Holstein - Guitars
Janne Nuotio - Bass
Harri Luoma - Drums
Record Label: Xtreem Music


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