I hadn’t even made it to the last song on my advance copy of Fear the Priest before I was blasting an e-mail to the publicist for Exxxekutioner, begging for the chance to premiere a track from this debut EP. I got my wish, and now you’ll get a taste of what got me so pumped up about this six-song main-line of pure mosh fuel.
This group of four twenty-somethings from the vicinity of Manchester in the UK have only been together since the spring of last year, but you’d never guess that from the music they make. They have mature skills and old souls — and by that I mean a direct channel to the early spirit of bands like Venom, Sodom, and Destruction, delivering a brash and authentic blast of thrash, black, and speed metal like they’ve been doing it for decades.
The hell-ripping songs on Fear the Priest fly like a horde of bat-winged demons, the kind of speed you’d reach if you were on fire and the nearest water source was three blocks away. The riffs are to die for — super-charged with adrenaline and loaded with irresistible hooks — and the tumbling, rumbling drumwork and booming bass will get their hooks in you, too.
And the vocals are just what you want for this kind of vicious, flame-throwing thrash: ugly, serrated, venomous, and with balls to spare.
The production is also just right: The instrumentals were recorded live in one take, with the kind of garage-band sound quality that pisses on clean, modern recording techniques. But although the sound is appropriately rough and raw, the playing is tight and technically impressive.
Well, you can tell how enthusiastic I am, so I’ll shut up and let you hear a sample of the EP for yourselves. The song is “Maniac Asylum”
Fear the Priest will be released July 21 by Liverpool’s Ulthar Records on tape (limited to 100 copies with a free patch) and on CD (limited to 300 copies), and it will be available as a digital download as well.