Without healthy doses of experimentation and evolution, metal (like all forms of music) would stagnate. And of course where innovation succeeds it can be especially exciting. But that doesn’t mean that bands who faithfully honor tradition are doomed to fail — far from it. It depends on how good they are at what they choose to emulate — on the strength of their songwriting prowess, their instrumental skill, and the authenticity of their spirit.
Which brings us to the Portuguese band Prayers of Sanity. This trio — bassist Carlos, guitarist André, and vocalist/drummer Tião — joined forces for the purpose of reminding everyone that ’80s thrash metal was still alive and kicking. They took their cues from such classic bands as Exodus, Nuclear Assault, and Testament, while charging their music with the raw intensity of punk and hardcore.
But while Prayers of Sanity devoted themselves to an old genre loaded with stand-out names and die-hard fans, their music is anything but stagnant. Even fans who’ve grown jaded about thrash (and that includes this writer) are going to have their eyes popped open by this group’s newest album (their fourth full-length), Doctrine of Misanthropy. It’s so riotously explosive (yet sharply executed), so vicious, and so immediately addictive, that it provides a huge thrill from beginning to end. And we are thrilled to let you hear all of it today in advance of its June 25 release by Rastilho Records.