Hail fellow metal heads.
“Enemy Of God” is the best thrash record ever made.
That’s what I want to say, but I just can’t bring myself to do it. Let me explain.
I am a 27yr old guy from Australia and I discovered metal quite late in life, when I was 16. I always subconsciously knew that metal was the music for me but the light didn’t switch on until I was 16. I remember watching Metallica’s Unforgiven 2 on Rage on ABC in ‘97, being entranced and thinking “What the fuck is this?”. I even remember blasting Sabbath’s “Heaven And Hell” over and over when I was 9, but I never clicked onto why I liked it so much. Pretty much from then on through to 16 I always liked the heavier parts of songs, even in rock and pop/rock songs. My first true thrash album was “Master Of Puppets”. Little did I know that I was starting my metal journey with arguably the best thrash album ever made. I then made my way through all of Metallica’s back catalogue and then I moved onto Slayer and Sepultura.
After that, everything exploded, within a few months I found Pantera, Machine Head, Coal Chamber, Hatebreed, Kataklysm, Megadeth, Nightwish, Obituary, Opeth, Rammstein, System Of A Down, Trivium, Cradle Of Filth. And it kept on going and keeps on going, Dream Theater, Amon Amarth, Anthrax, Arch Enemy, Cannibal Corpse, Death, Devin Townsend And SYL, Dimmu Borgir, DIO, Disturbed, Hammerfall, Priest and Maiden, Jeff Loomis and Nevermore, Satch, Manowar, Rhapsody Of Fire, Rob Zombie, Vai, Stratovarius, Slipknot, Testament, Tool, Yngwie, 3 Inches Of Blood.
And finally Kreator.
The reason I can’t say that “Enemy Of God” is the best ever is this;
I am a muscle car guy and my first car was a ‘72 Holden Kingswood with a 253ci V8 and a 3sp column shift manual. It had no centre console and I put the speakers from my bedroom stereo in between the front seats. I wired then up along with some tiny 4” speakers from my dads ute and blasted Metallica non-stop. This is when I realised my other true love in V8 muscle cars. I hooned around town every chance I got, spending every cent of my after school wage on fuel. It was during this time, the last 6 months of high school, that this combined with metal music would be my saviour, my calling, my awakening in life. The standout memory was after an argument with my parents (yeah how stereotypical). I had just a had a massive argument with my parents about school work and jumped in my car and smoked the tyres all the way down the street. During this drive I was playing “Master Of Puppets” as loud as I could, speakers on the limit of distortion. There was one song that always resonated with me more than any other and that was “Disposable Heroes”. Every time I play that song it takes me to place that no other song can. Back to a time where I could do adult world things but with none of the responsibilities. Absolute freedom. A window of life that happens only once.
It is this, and only this, that stops me from saying that “Enemy Of God” is the best album ever made. If I was to ignore my emotional attachment to “Master Of Puppets” and more importantly “Disposable Heroes” then yes, “Enemy Of God” is by far the best album ever made. Best ever in the history of music, of all genres, of all time. Period. It’s perfect in every way, a perfect record. As the Brits would say, all killer and no filler.
It might seem a coincidence that the very first time I ever seen or heard Kreator was the song “Enemy Of God” on Headbangers Ball, but considering the album preceding and the two following it are so very close to being as good, it may be a moot point. Because the whole album is that good, I just can’t even begin to name the my standout parts.
The last 4 records, from Violent Revolution in 2001 to Phantom Antichrist in 2011, Kreator have simply pissed all over everything the “Big 4”, or anyone else for that matter, have done. Including the 80’s classics.
I was front row on the barrier for Kreator’s show in Brisbane this year, and fuck me. The best set I have ever seen. Even better than both Sabbath shows with Dio and Ozzy. I thought I had experienced losing my shit when sabbath played “Children Of The Grave”, but nope. Kreator took it to a level I didn’t know existed. I was on a high for weeks after, even when working night shifts, busting my ass swinging spanners all night.
One of the things that makes Kreator so good is the songwriting. I have absolutely no musical knowledge what so ever, so it is hard to explain and I will probably fuck it up anyway, but I just love how the riffs and the drum beats flow with each other. Sometimes they feel “syncopated” (thanks John Petrucci), and sometimes so meshed together that the songs are nearly uncomfortably heavy. Examples of this would be the verses of “Voices of the Dead”, “When Death Takes It’s Dominion”, and “Your Heaven My Hell”.
Another is Mille’s vocal performances. I used to use Tom Araya’s delivery in “Angel Of Death” as the yardstick, but Mille just blows him away. But what does my head in is that he manages to keep up that intensity for every song. And although I may be new to the Kreator world and am yet to get into the older stuff, I love Sami’s guitar work. It took me a while to really get into it, mainly because I am into the more neo-classical shredding stuff, like Jeff Loomis. No-one can do what he does, his solos are so catchy, so powerful, and fast but aren’t million-note-a-second wankery (as Devy would put it).
There is so much more and I could go on and on but I will leave it there, but I might vent a bit more later on. I welcome any input, discussion and/or opinions.
Defender of the Metal faith down under