Welcome back to our Taxonomy series, where we break down umbrella genres like progressive metal, post rock and doom metal and outline all of the progressions and subgenres that have matriculated over the past few decades. The dissection of thrash metal you'll find below contains a detailed dissection of the most crucial genre in extreme metal style. Thrash led to incredible innovations over the years, and in turn, a multiplicity of styles has made its way back into the genre's core traits to form some of the most forward thinking metal coming out today. Seriously, many of the bands mentioned below have released records less than a year ago, and in some cases, less than a month. There's a ton of ground to cover here, so without further ado, let's riff on some of the best thrash you can use to mosh in your bedroom.
Cynic is a legendary and influential band. Since news that drummer and founding member Sean Reinert has left the band, many fans have wondered what is on the horizon, if anything. While there’s still no word on new music from co-founder and guitarist/vocalist Paul Masvidal (who vowed to continue the band), late last year, an announcement from the realm of music archaeologists got nerd minds spinning. Uroboric Forms: The Complete Demo Collection would be released and fans would maybe get some answers about how the hell Cynic went from being in Death (which was basically a Chuck Schuldiner backing gig) to dropping an absolutely groundbreaking gem in Focus. Southern Florida in the late 80s and early 90s is hallowed ground in extreme metal. Would Uroboric Forms rewrite the narrative?
Iron Reagan is made up of the singer and bassist from Municipal Waste, Darkest Hour's old drummer, and DRI's Crossover DNA. Then again, if you're at all familiar with the thrash revival scene then you probably already know that about this band. And you can probably take a healthy guess about what their latest album on Relapse, Crossover Ministry, sounds like. All hints of predictability aside this is a rollicking throwback to the heyday of thrash when bands like Testament, Exodus, Forbidden, and so many others were as likely to be found shredding guitars and skateboards as digging themselves out of the pit.
New England: home of the Red Sox, Jack Kerouac, and some pretty damn fine hardcore. And as much as I'd love to obsess about and name celebrities that also call this place home, we have a fucking article to do! For those who are new: No Heroes is a weekly column that sheds some light on new and upcoming hardcore bands from New England. "Hardcore" in this context is a little vague, referring to not only metalcore (metallic hardcore), but hardcore punk and basically anything else using the hardcore title. Enjoy!
My last Starter Kit (on Contemporary Thrash) brought in more recent bands and albums that cranked their amps past 11 and shredded faces with their speed. However, any genre is (to quote Shrek), like an onion; there are layers and layers of difference all balled up in one, and thrash metal is no different. While most people are at least aware of the genre’s staples (Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, etc.), they might not know of the lesser known bands that speed even past the big names.
In 2015, in a crowded house show somewhere in the continental United States, a large group of punks adorned in DRI and Spazz patches shivered. They knew something was about to happen, something monumental, yet could not put their fingers on it. And so they sat, drinking shitty, luke warm beer from the can while casually shooting the shit about what Infest record gave the one true representation of their sound, as well as whether or not it was weird that the band was still playing some 30 years later. However, the looming feeling that something, something massive, was on the horizon loomed, and eventually they could no longer take it, pulling out their capitalist pig iPhones in unison so that they could check their Facebooks, aiming to discover exactly what was going on.