"Sounds of Violence"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Two albums into Onslaught's "comeback" and they are sounding pretty pissed. That means we won't be seeing a redo of "In Search of Sanity" any time soon, which is fine by me. I can't say that "Sounds of Violence" is a blowaway thrash album, but I can't deny the sound is rawer and angrier than Onslaught's return disc, "Killing Peace". That one struck me as rather average and this is not light years better, but it sure isn't a step backward.

Vocalist Sy Keeler channels his mid-life crisis into extreme anger and sounds like he's ready to kill somebody on cuts like "Born for War" (excellent opener), "Hatebox" and "Antitheist". He curses like a 14 year old ICP fan throughout and shows that older does not necessarily mean mellower. Also jacked up is drummer Steve Grice, who probably puts in his most intense performance ever here. If triggers are helping, I can't tell. These two guys anchor and enhance the generally rough sound.

It's still not the kind of material that is going to linger in your head very long or change your life, but "Sounds of Violence" provides a very sturdy injection of thrash metal. I still have the feeling they aren't pushing themselves as far as freshness goes, but there ya go.