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Grief of War - "A Mounting Crisis...As Their Fury Got Released" (CD)

Grief of War - "A Mounting Crisis...As Their Fury Got Released" CD cover image

"A Mounting Crisis...As Their Fury Got Released" track listing:

1. Hatred Burns 4:21
2. Rat Race 5:11
3. Sown By Greed 4:23
4. Don't Walk Away 4:35
5. Distrust 3:35
6. Eternal Curse 4:50
7. Blind from the Facts 6:25
8. Resist 2:07
9. Blood Lust 2:51
10. The Judgement Day 6:17

Reviewed by on April 3, 2008

"Faultless drumming, competent solos and classic shouting vocals à la Tom Angelripper with all tracks sung in perfect English"

I really like the idea of Japanese metal. There is a great feeling knowing despite being half a world away and part of a foreign culture the language of metal is something that binds us together as a community and as friends. So I was all too happy to check out Grief of War's debut full-length "A Mounting Crisis... As Their Fury Got Released."

If you cast your knowledge back to the late 80's you will know that it was a time that the thrash scene - and metal in general - blossomed and bloated. For every Exodus there were ten third-tier bands playing a generic version of said band. So what makes Grief of War different from any other band that came out of the thrash boom? Not too much, really. Don't come into this album expecting anything mind-blowing original; just expect that warm rebellious feeling of a classic thrash metal assault. If I had to pick a yardstick from all the 80's icons I'd suggest envisioning a mix of Sodom and Kreator.

Right off the bat, one of the best qualities of the album is that every song is unique and interesting, which is a huge bonus for any fan of a thrash scene hampered with monotony. The riffs never venture into boring territory. Plenty of catchy hooks are strewn throughout, such as on "Eternal Curse," and an equal amount of heavy-handed headbanging rhythms, such as on "Don't Walk Away," are present. This album is chock-full of frantic, thrashing riffs, but Grief Of War never forgets to inject the interesting dynamics and melodies of bands like early Testament. "Sown by Greed" is a darker track and the band really clicks on the song writing here. The performances are all great - faultless drumming, competent solos and classic shouting vocals à la Tom Angelripper with all tracks sung in perfect English.

The production is great for a great reason. It's not over produce or under produced - it just gives you the classic 80s vibe. Sent back in time, any denim clad thrasher wouldn't bat an eyelid while listening to this release but would sure bang his head. For any other genre, retro production would seem bizarre, but this is thrash metal. If you're looking for an introduction to today’s relevant thrash metal after checking out the classics, I'd say have a look at a slightly more aggressive release like Warbringer's "War Without End" first. However, if your thrash knowledge extends from Atropy to Znowhite you won't think twice about adding a skull to the rating below and checking out "A Mounting Crisis...As Their Fury Got Released" by Grief Of War.

Highs: Solid and interesting tracks throughout

Lows: Nothing revolutionary to the thrash genre

Bottom line: Japanese thrash for the thrash enthusiast

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)