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Sunday Old School: Bay Area Thrash Metal Veterans Hirax

Thrash metal has grown to become one of the most popular sub-genres in the history of metal. It has it's stars of course such as Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer and it has the band's with more of a large cult following such as Exodus and Testament. But like any other movement, it also has it's forgotten heroes. When researching the original thrash metal scenes, one will inevitably stumble upon a band named Hirax, one of the most dedicated and unique bands in the field.

Like many other thrash metal bands in the 1980s, they were signed to Metal Blade Records, through which they released two studio albums. "Raging Violence" in 1985 and "Hate, Fear And Power" the following year. The second album was a rushed release thanks to pressure from the label and clocked in at just over sixteen minutes, featuring only eight songs. Frontman Katon De Pena left the band not long after, due to internal tensions and what he saw as bad label management, forming the short-lived band Phantasm with original Metallica bassist Ron McGovney and Dark Angel drummer Gene Hoglan. Hirax themselves replaced Katon with former Exodus frontman Paul Baloff, though they decided to call it a day not long after.

The band would reunite with the original lineup in 2000 and released the "El Diablo Negro" EP the same year, however the reunion was not to last as by the next year, Katon De Pena was the only original member left in the band. Since then he has kept Hirax going strong, releasing several EPs and two studio albums, "New Age Of Terror" (2004) and "El Rostro de la Muerte" (2009), as well as building up a strong fan base in South America.

Hirax - Blind Faith

Hirax - Walk With Death

Hirax - Assassins Of War

Hirax - El Rostro de la Muerte

Diamond Oz's avatar

Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com for four years and has been a metal fan for ten years, going so far as to travel abroad for metal shows.

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9 Comments on "Sunday Old School: Hirax"

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deathfreak's avatar

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1. deathfreak writes:

The vox are cool as hell.

# Feb 28, 2010 @ 6:09 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Hammerheart's avatar

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2. Hammerheart writes:

Great stuff. :)

# Feb 28, 2010 @ 7:41 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
IrishMetal's avatar

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3. IrishMetal writes:

Yo, Oz, any chance of getting the Sunday School things in one area to be browsed through at leisure?

Or has it already been done and I'm an idiot?

Just wondering, cuz they're pretty good reads :P

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 9:09 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Diamond Oz's avatar

Senior News Correspondent

4. Diamond Oz writes:

I'll have a word with Deathbringer about it mate. Would definitely be cool to see all the SOS together, would also be handy so that I can see who we've covered.

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 12:19 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
hellrat's avatar

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5. hellrat writes:

sh!t man, i HAD totally forgotten about these dudes...

check out how chill katon is when the bumbling stage diver get snagged on the cable, yanking the mic right from his mouth...the polar opposite of the 'way too cool' sh!t-itude of so many frontmen...can you imagine the spaz some prima donna like snAXL rose would've thrown, before quitting the show and storming offstage to pout?

hey Oz, what's next....body count, maybe? ;)

and i agree with the Irish...SOS archives!!!

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 12:33 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Diamond Oz's avatar

Senior News Correspondent

6. Diamond Oz writes:

Weird you should say that man! Wrote one for Body Count yesterday. Not sure when it will be posted though.

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 2:51 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
wilco's avatar

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7. wilco writes:

yea a good artical hiraaaaaax f***ing rules
hve to say they stayed true to old school thrash
just orderd noise chaos war

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 3:27 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
HeadbangerHippy's avatar

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8. HeadbangerHippy writes:

Dude! f***ing afro headbanging! That is great. Nice article dude. I hope that SOS archive gets set up, I'd be interested in it.

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 6:51 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Diamond Oz's avatar

Senior News Correspondent

9. Diamond Oz writes:

Thanks for the feedback guys. As I said, I'll have a word with db about an archive. In the meantime if you want to check out the other SOS articles then I believe the full list is as follows:

Sick Of It All, Suicidal Tendencies, Budgie, Blue Cheer, Bathory, Exhorder, Napalm Death, Black Sabbath, Deliverance, Death, Destruction, Bolt Thrower, Scorpions, Dio, Celtic Frost, Venom, Mercyful Fate, Judas Priest, Kyuss, At The Gates, Diamond Head, Dark Angel, Thin Lizzy, Acid Bath and Cathedral. Those are all the ones I have on my list that have been done (not all by me, just a list I made so I knew what we'd covered.)

# Mar 1, 2010 @ 10:40 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address

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