"City of Steel"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Here's one of the great thrash discoveries of of the few new school bands I feel is capable of matching the giants of old. Believe it or not, these guys hail from the mighty metal metropolis of...Saskatoon, Saskatchewan?!

It might as well be the Frisco area circa 1987 because this is pedal to the metal American style thrash that kicks your head in from the word go. An avalanche of excellently arranged thrash riffs attacks your earholes, peppered with shredding solos reminiscent of Megadeth and Forbidden at their best. I wish Megadeth's "Th1rt3en" album had the fire and fury of "City of Steel" because this is technical thrash at its best. "Virtue In Death" is a whirlwind opener but it's really second song "Hunting Evil" that had me frantically looking for a tennis racket so I could play air guitar. What a scorcher! The Megadeth comparison is not unwarranted, because this sucker was produced ex-Megaman Glen Drover...and he did an excellent job, capturing the balance between harsh crunch and crystal clear lead guitar just right.

Snarling, vicious vocals also add extra kick to this record and just about anywhere you drop the needle here (OK, now I'm showing my age!) you'll hit a motherlode. I really rank "City of Steel" with Vektor's "Outer Isolation", Evile's "Five Serpent's Teeth" and Entrench's "Inevitable Decay" as thrash blaster of the year. Hell, even the Ed Repka cover kicks ass more than usual!