Deathhammer - Evil Power (Hells Headbangers)

Power thrashing death out of the top drawer..
Release Date: 
29 Jun 2015 - 11:30pm

In his review for Deathhammer’s last album, the splendidly primitive Onward to the Pits, our very own Micky Strong described the band as being best suited to those amongst you who ‘found the first albums by Sodom and Kreator too cerebral’, and, whilst that little kernel of eternal verity still finds some truth here on their new full lengther I’m glad to report that, whilst still thrashing away like the Cro-Magnon metallians they so clearly are, our fave Norwegian death thrashers have actually moved on a little since 2012.

That’s not to say that they’ve become air-brushed, bouffant-toting posers, far from it. Third track on the album Satan is Back is pure, black-spirited brutal thrash mayhem incarnate, whilst the eminently sensibly-titled Powertrip absolutely rips in every department with Sadomancer pulling out a near-perfect piece of blackthrash soloing; but here and there there are little touches that suggest there is more to Deathhammer than just sledgehammer barbarity. The slightly lengthier Sinner’s Possession, for instance, gallops along at slower pace, all eastern touches and NWoBHM flourishes, sounding for all the world like Cloven Hoof and a young Mille Petrozza meeting in unholy union, and it has to be said that the track stands out all the more for the decision to take the foot of the peddle for a while. It’s no less heavy, of course, but it does make for a welcome change of pace.

That said, the return to hyperthrash on the coruscating likes of Rot in Shreds doesn’t exactly stink the joint out, and the final washup is that this is probably Deathhammer’s most fulsome, complete sounding record to date. Not that they’d probably be interested in such soubriquets as ‘fulsome’ or ‘complete’ themselves, but you get my point. Joyously unencumbered by the need to do anything but please themselves, Deathhammer will once again happily take any who go along for the ride to the black thrash heights with Evil Power. For what it is – almost perfect.