Riot Squad

Written by: PP on 25/11/2009 22:37:29

The story line of German thrash metallers Paradox follows the path of countless other Bay Area thrash bands who helped shape the thrash metal genre back in the 80s: release a couple of albums way back then, hiatus for over a decade, release an album, go on another lengthy hiatus, and reunite towards the end of this decade now that revivalist thrash metal is trendy again. Except Paradox doesn't sound revivalist at all on their fifth album "Riot Squad". Instead, they have crafted a fine thrash metal outing that sounds like it was written back in the 80s, except with a modern twist that miraculously makes the record sound relevant today. What I'm trying to say is that it's a pretty good thrash record compared to all of the revivalist stuff we get bombarded with these days. It smells like the old school pissed off spirit and anger from start to finish, there's no space for ballads or fucking around, this is serious business.

But first things first. You only need a single listen to start pointing the finger towards bands like Metallica, Anthrax and other major 'original thrash' bands. "Riptide", for example, smells so much like 80s Metallica that I had to go through a good couple of songs to make sure it wasn't a direct rip off. I guess much of this is brought on by their vocalist, who sounds quite a bit like mid to late 80s era James Hetfield, spitting his lyrics with a convincing amount of anger. But this isn't such a problem because the riffs and licks are well-thought out, and even though they lack originality, they should seduce most thrash metallers into a frenzy of headbanging. That should surely receive some commendation, eh?

Paradox should also appeal to the more modern crowd given how their expression occasionally spills over to metalcore as well. I guess some 80s-fans do embrace the modern genres, huh EW? Maybe that's why the band can boast with over 200,000 Myspace views. As an additional surprise, the album finisher "Psychofficial" bears more than just eponymous similarity to Slipknot's "Psychosocial": the chorus reminded me of Slipknot straight away, although the pace is much more frantic and things are still kept within the realms of thrash metal. So basically, you've got something for the 80s freaks, and something for the young kids, both approaches nicely in balance. That rewards Paradox a solid


Download: Riptide, Hollow Peace, Nothingness
For the fans of: Metallica, Anthrax, Helstar, Exciter
Listen: Myspace

Release date 16.10.2009
AFM Records

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