I feel like TOXIC HOLOCAUST was a band that I discovered. I ordered that first 7" from an ad in Maximum Rock N' Roll. I liked the description they gave it so I thought what the hell and mailed my $4 to Punks Not Profits. About 2 weeks later I had my new 7" and thus was my introduction to TH.
It was back in the days of myspace and I soon found myself "friends" with Joel Grind. Before you knew it I was booking a show for them (him) in Denver. Yup, I booked TOXIC HOLOCAUSTS first show in Denver. He had BLUDWOLF as his back up band and they tore the place up! The show was at my brother's pad, he lived in this converted warehouse space that we use to do shows in. He had a half-pipe in his living room into kitchen. The place was pretty fucken' punk! Anyway TH kicked ass at that show.
But you know what's weird, I kind of fell out of touch with the band by 'An Overdose of Death'. It seemed so cliché by then and the whole thrash revival was in full swing by then. They came to town a few times but I didn't feel the need to go. I'm kind of kicking myself now.
The first thing that caught my eye was the new logo, I guess they got some shit for this but I thought it was cool, and then the cover art. As soon as I saw the cover art this album made it onto my buy list. The artwork was/is so sick I had to own this album for that reason alone. I love Sawblade's stuff, he just had a good write up in the last issue of Profane Existence.
Anyway it kind of slipped off for my radar for a couple of months but a few weeks ago I walked into the record store looking for something else and saw the LP version right there staring at me. Again, that artwork grabbed me by the color of my STORMCROW shirt and said "buy me you fricken' poseur!" I knew the wise thing to do was obey the Command and fork over my debit card for this raging piece of wax.
The entire experience of this LP takes me back to Junior High or High School...Laying on my bed staring at the album cover, reading the liner notes, following along and singing along with lyric sheet in hand to the bitchen' metal blasting from my turntable. Again, the artwork is off the fucken' hook, but then even the insert is so reminiscent of a metal album from the 80's, it has that xeroxed look and it's done in typewriter font. Man that was taking me back...
But dude! This album fucking jams! It's not just a cool package this is the best shit that Joel has done yet...by far. This time he has a band and perhaps that is why it all seems tighter, but it never loses that crossover punk feel. In fact it is so fitting that they are touring with the ENGLISH DOGS (the crossover thrash version, not the lame street punk version) as that is the best reference I can think of. Even his voice sounds somewhat like Aide's voice. The best example would be on the track 'Nowhere to Run', the closer for side one.
I think the first song, 'Judgement Awaits You', spins for only about 30 seconds before they drop into the first "mosh" part of the album. This album makes me bang my bald ass head and flail around my living room like a pit fiend only recently let lose to engage in the fevered dance after having been chained up in a dungeon since the 80's. Fuck yea!
The production is perfect...Raw and dirty yet professional and tight. Everything about this album is almost perfect. The only reason I cant give it a 5 star review is because that would put it on the same level as AMEBIX 'Sonic Mass' and GHOST. Although this album is a fucking rager through and through I cannot commit to the 5...so, it gets 4.5 stars!
The stand out track is 'Bitch'. That song captures it what they are doing so fricken' well. This is old school thrash, like before the mainstream got a hold of it in the later 80's. This is straight from when there was still a raw punk influence to much of it....It's 'Hell Awaits', or 'Feel the Fire', 'Spreading the Disease' or 'Killings My Business'. This album captures the spirit of those early classics for the legions of thrashers in the 21st Century.