Mantic Ritual - Executioner (Nuclear Blast/Riot)

Mantic Ritual play thrash like they've lived it for 20 years... yet they only formed in 2008.

Mantic Ritual are a really young thrash band from Philly in the US. How young? They were formed just last year - that's right: 2008! Even though they are so young, their debut release has just come out on one of the world's largest music lables, and they play thrash like they've been living it for the past twenty years.

Many of the elements that you'd expect from an old-school thrash band are here: the pace, the long intros, the riffs, the drum patterns, the bass lines. The vocals hark back to the golden old days of thrash, when we all got excited about it (and where some of us loved it so much we never really moved on).

The release that I have sitting here on my desk also doesn't have the final artwork - but the art on the actual release looks excellent: a long way from the hand-scratched artworks of young bands back in the day. Stand-out moments for me include Black Tar Sin, the title track Executioner, and the intro riffs of Thrashatonement.

There are probably some things I could pick to bits with this release, such as the fact that parts of it get rather pedestrian; that Wetmore's vocals get a bit old after a while; that some of the construction smacks of youth and, while it is good isn't yet mature. I could say all these things, but honestly for a debut release this is killer. And if you like your thrash, I reckon you'll dig it.

Mantic Ritual's Executioner is out now on Nuclear Blast/Riot.