May 032011

By and large, the so-called “re-thrash” movement has left us cold here at NCS. To be brutally honest, we’re not that much into most of the old gods of thrash who are still cranking out albums and touring (though we can still get it up for Exodus and Death Angel), and that may explain why the many bands in the last few years who’ve just re-tread the style without bringing something new to the old chassis aren’t that interesting to us.

But — there are exceptions, one of which is Toxic Holocaust. Maybe it’s our regional prejudice (Toxic Holocaust is from the Pacific Northwest), maybe it’s because we’ve had some fun at one of their smokin’ live shows in Seattle, or maybe it’s because their stripped-down, punkish approach to thrash appeals to our affinity for the raw and raucous — whatever the reason, Toxic Holocaust has been growing on us.

And so it is that we’re actually looking forward to the next release by the band — Conjure and Command, which Relapse Records will begin distributing on July 19. Man, July 19 is a long way off, isn’t it? But the teasers are starting, and the first one is a song from the new album which went up for streaming a few hours ago. It’s called “Nowhere To Run” and it got my head to moving up and down and side to side. There’s nothing fancy going on, but if you like thrash straight-ahead, unvarnished, sneering, and slightly evil, you probably ought to stay with us past the jump and check out that song.

Isn’t that a cool album cover?

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So, what did you think of that?  Does anyone out there like straight thrash at all? I wonder, because we almost never write about thrash bands here.


  1. I love me some Toxic Holocaust. Definitely one of the re-thrashers I approve of.

    The thing about Thrash is it’s the strand of extreme metal most related to straight-up garage rock. It leaves nowhere to hide(lol)–how it’s produced does not matter, how many strings you use or what you tune to makes no difference. Hell, how many bass pedals you use makes no difference. There are no gimmicks in thrash–either you have it or you don’t.

    Thrash swings and grooves–you can dance to it. You can fight to it. You can fuck to it. It’s vanilla ice cream in that it is a true delicacy when made properly, and incredibly bland when made badly.

    It’s no accident that the best members of the other metal sub-genres (metalcore, death metal, black metal–all of them) learn how to construct a hook and a beat from Thrash.

    As far as I am concerned, thrash is essential.

    • You make a good argument dude, especially about the influence of thrash on other genres (bands that blend death and thrash are some of my favorites). Unfortunately, to my ears, the majority of thrash bands (not including Toxic Holocaust) fall into the “incredibly bland” subdivision of thrash. You stack those bands up against a group like Revocation (who’ve done some amazingly cool things with the thrash template), and it’s no contest.

  2. I started out on thrash. I love it to this day, but of the re-thrash bands, the only one that I like is Evile. They do the best job of bringing back thrash from its heyday in the 80’s.I think Skeletonwitch runs in the vein of using the thrash template, but throws blackened death into the mix and they do it really fucking well.

    This song kicks ass. Looking forward to listen to the rest of the album.

    • I’m with you on Evile and Skeletonwitch — both are great.

      • Yes there are good thrash bands, but really????
        I went to a show with you where Toxic Holocaust opened and I’m pretty sure (unless memory fails me, which is possible) that both of our ears started bleeding profusly, and not in the good way, in the “oh dear god I’m losing precious brain cells out of my ears due to this noise” kind of way. They must have gotten better or something for you to be praising them (maybe I shouldn’t judge until I listen) or you’ve just totally lost it.

        • I actually liked their music at that show, but you and IntoTheDarkness were so harsh in your reactions that I was too timid to say it. And I’ve continued to listen to their albums off and on and, as I said in the post, they’ve grown on me more. As I recall, part of your negative reaction was to Joel Grind’s “hair metal” appearance, which is kind of off-putting (and doesn’t fit with the music).

  3. Living Sacrifice gets fairly damn close on their 2010 release the Infinite Order. I love thrash… and I’m honestly glad it’s not oversaturated… yet.

    • Living Sacrifice was one of the bands I had in mind up above when I was talking about bands that blend death and thrash being some of my favorites. Such a good band . . .

  4. joel grinds hair metal appearance is keeping in line with the whole portland “glam crust” thing,where theres this crustpunk/metal fashion thing going on- hot chicks in hellhammer and amebix shirts meets glam rock look,and dudes that owe $ to nikki sixx for stealing his look. i call it “butt crust”…
    i do like toxic holocaust though…dude can write a catchy tune and doesnt get stupid

    • First I’ve heard about the “glam crust” thing in Portland. Weird. I don’t think it’s spread to Seattle yet. Maybe we need to erect a wall across I-5 at the border while there’s still time. 🙂

  5. go to a hellshock or burning leather show and youll see hahaha

  6. Toxic Holocaust sucks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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