Genre: Thrash Metal
Label: Southern Lord
First time I came across this band from Texas, was by seeing Eyehategod’s drummer sporting their t shirt on a gig, I thought it was legit, so I proceeded. “Manifest Decimation” came back in 2013 and blew us away. At last some thrash metal with attitude, identity, balls and depth in its music. Almost 4 years after comes “Nightmare Logic” to turn the tables, to hang the curtain, to make the fat lady sing. Close the doors, the ship is sailing and not coming back. Let me try to make it more realistic: You get 5 guys that give their all playing thrash, not old school, not neo- or retro- or whatever thrash, but a thrash so relevant in 2017 that my ears cannot have enough of it. There is nothing new going on in this record of course, no crossover, no experimentation. Just make a list of what you like in that genre and you will find it here, plus one great attribute: The compositions are so well crafted and the riffs so well forged, that your prostate (or clit, or whatever) will be constantly tingling and tilting begging for a climax that never comes.
Shall we take it piece by piece? “Soul Sacrifice” kicks in with an intro and kicks your teeth in with the first riffs that have come out straight out of the Slayer mid tempo school of thrash. The way it becomes “Executioner’s Tax (Swing Of The Axe)” is just magnificent. The “Peace Sells” catchiness of the latter is ridiculous and the backing vocals in the chorus somehow echo “Toxic Waltz”. “Firing Squad” starts as the fastest track of the record, a full blown thrash attack with a change of pace in the middle and a staccato riffing all the way through. Τhe title track sends you straight to the wall with its “Arise” quality and that “Dead Embryonic Cells” passage. First side is flawless, let us turn to the second one. “Waiting Around To Die” could have been a hymn in the 80’s with that riffing and chorus and it certainly is one today. “Ruination” is an absolute killer, the outbreak after the intro is a whirlwind of sheer power. “If Not Us Then Who” is another monster of impeccable rhythm and Slayer like cuts and riff succession and a distinctive fade out while the drums are changing tempo till the last second. “Crucifixation” closes the record in a grandiose way with fast riffing, soloing and the same explosion sounds as in the beginning.
The lyrics are all about power, corruption, and money and are a huge slap in the face towards awakening. “The Slumber of reason gives birth to all demons” and an angry Goya finds his way in a thrash masterpiece. The production is thick and deep and the guitar tone is razorblade sharp. Rick Ibanez’ (also of the mighty Eternal Champion, now there’s a heavy metal champion right there) guitarwork is immense and so maturely controlled it is unbelievable. Chris Ulsch’s drums are as simple and effective as they should be accompanying those riffs all the way through and Riley Gale’s raspy and aggressive voice is the perfect expression of the band’s force, while every growl or scream he attempts is a reason to raise your fist in the air.
Power Trip are stepping on the shoulders of giants and by that they are stepping up the game in today’s thrash. Delivering yet another record staying faithful to the traditional thrash values, from the chaotic cover, the pictured inlay, the short and tight 8-song record comprised of two sides of equal force and all the aforementioned elements that pay homage to the genre’s pioneers. Can’t wait to see them playing the new material on stage, where the band is really invincible. “Nightmare Logic” is a thrash perfection, plain simple.