"A Girl Called Cerveza"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Tankard on Nuclear Blast! A couple of years ago, who would have thunk it? The German booze-hounds have almost come full circle to their glory days of the 80's, when "Chemical Invasion" and "The Morning After" were two of the greatest thrash albums ever! In the 90's, the bottom dropped out and the bar almost closed, but Tankard showed the stubbornness of true alcoholics and kept at it all through the lean years, slowly crawling their way back into the limelight. And now they're with the #1  metal label in the world.

Woo-hah! Here we have band that proves pure beer and pure thrash are a veritable fountain of youth. On "A Girl Called Cerveza", Tankard is bursting with energy and while I couldn't say this new one equals the 2 80's classics mentioned above, it doesn't fall far short. Fellow killer Krauts Kreator will get most of the publicity with their new one "Phantom Antichrist", but in this doctor's humble opinion, Little Miss Cerveza is just as worthy of attention.

The speed has been kicked up a notch, the production is far better than what Tankard had on their AFM albums and the band has totally retained its distinctive style, which cannot be confused with any other band. A special shout out should go to longtime vocalist Gerre, who has never sounded better. The guy doesn't have the usual raw/raspy thrash vocals and neither does he have the more typical clean power metal type singing, but he transmits catchy vocal lines with ease and oozes energy throughout "A Girl Called Cerveza". He even does a convincing duet with no less than metal goddess Doro on "The Metal Ladyboy"!

Every song has fast thrashing riffs, firm control and a super catchy hook. I direct your attention to the chorus on the title track,  "Running On Fumes" and "Master of Farces". I especially like the echoing callback "we are the righteous!" on "Witch Hunt". Though the trademark Tankard humor is certainly present, the music often sounds surprisingly serious, even a little melancholy, especially on "Rapid Fire" (A Tyrant's Elegy) and "Son Of A Fridge". But one look at the cover is all you need to know that these guys are not going to give Opeth any competition in terms of grimness...

Through booze and speed, we are born anew! Drop that skank you're with now and hook up with "A Girl Called Cerveza"!