(Today, Xtreem Music is reissuing the 1993 debut album of the Florida death metal band Killing Addiction, and to celebrate, we’re presenting Todd Manning’s review.)
It’s amazing how an album can transport you back in time, evoking crystal clear memories of your past, especially when you haven’t even heard it before. That’s exactly what happened to me when I listened to Killing Addiction’s Omega Factor, which is being reissued by Xtreem Music on March 9th. By midway through the first song, I was already reminiscing about when my first Death Metal band used to practice in my parent’s garage, and about our first show, which occurred mere weeks before this album originally hit the streets in the spring of 1993.
What these Floridians produced was a great marriage of the Death Metal of their own region mixed with New York Death Metal, full of intense grooves (which would go out of fashion within a couple of years), and a peppering of Thrash-holdover riffs, even sneaking in the occasional blast beat here or there.
More importantly though, there is a sound here that captures the spirit of the times. When we look back at the best albums of past eras, we know they will always be hailed as the classics of the genre. Each had its own identity, which is usually a strength, but they don’t always capture the overall feel of what was happening on a broader scope. Killing Addiction represents that missing sound.
They put out an album that represents the best of what the demo scene had on display, and even when there are blemishes, they only add to the charm. For instance, the drum breaks on “Nothing Remains” illustrate the kind of ingenuity of the times, but the next track, “Dehumanized” nearly collapses under the weight of its own ambition. Yet, this moment of striving makes it one of the best tracks on the whole album.
There’s more than a few passing nods to Malevolent Creation, Suffocation, Obituary, and Monstrosity. But perhaps even more importantly, at least to others like myself who were immersed in this scene, Killing Addiction seem to evoke some of my favorite demos I heard through various tape traders; releases like Crucifix’s Barriers and Bleed’s Womb come immediately to mind, along with a host of others.
As I said before, I hadn’t actually heard this album before, yet I certainly knew of its existence. In fact, I quite easily unearthed an old copy of S.O.D. magazine that had an advertisement for the album on the back and even offered a free copy if someone chose to subscribe.
I realize now, I probably would’ve been a huge fan of this band had I been given the chance, but you couldn’t just click a few buttons to check out a band back then. Still, now that I have this in my possession, I am sure to rock it on the regular, and enjoy all the memories it conjures up, even if Omega Factor was never really playing in the background of any of those moments.
Pre-order (digital and physical):
I’ve got this on cassette from when it came out. If these guys would’ve been on Roadrunner, Relapse or Metal Blade instead of JL America they could’ve really pulled something off.