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HARM
HARM
Demonic Alliance
(Battlegod Productions)
35:46min

Thrash Metal from Norway... yes, Thrash - and not Black Metal this time. Not that Thrash Metal hasn't been done in Norway any earlier, but since this country of breath-taking mountains and fjords has mostly become known for its infamous darker-than-black acts from the very beginning, it's kind of easy to get Norway associated with something completely different but not Thrash Metal. HARM, this 4-piece Thrash Metal group from Mandal, Norway, has been around since 1997 already and recorded 2 full-length studio albums thus far, off which a 9-track "Demonic Alliance", is their latest collection of mercilessly violent and aggressive cuts. Musically, there's a slight dose of Death Metal's brutality mixed in on "Demonic Alliance" (mainly due to Steffan's brutal vocal delivery) when it comes to the songs on this modern sounding Thrash record. In fact, in a way they occasionally tend to remind me of Marco Aro-era THE HAUNTED as well as Holland's own murder squad LEGION OF THE DAMNED. So yes, there's something familiar in the sound of HARM, although I wouldn't go that far by claiming they are a straight copycat of some other band(s) around them. HARM keeps their tempos high all the time - and the level of unrelenting aggression on the record always keeps the readout on the right side in an aggression level meter. Ripping guitar riffs are everywhere on "Demonic Alliance", and it's actually easier to count dead in a plane crash than counting all those separate riffs that HARM's guitarist Lars Andreas Vågane has squeezed into these 9 songs on this output. In a nutshell, "Demonic Alliance" is a very intense and strong wholeness of brutal and modern Thrash Metal that undoubtedly meets its fans. The digipak version of this comes also with a bonus disc, containing of 2 different videos for a song 'Demon' (in which some fat longhaired guy beats the shit out of some girl in a cabin in the middle of forest, and then gets interrupted by Norway's own chainsaw massacrer that starts chasing this fat guy in the woods. Now how corny but cool is that, ha-ha!), some behind the scenes footages, picture gallery, etc. - i.e. the usual stuff, you know. Definitely worth checking if just bands like the aforementioned Marco-era THE HAUNTED and LEGION OF THE DAMNED are anywhere near to your musical likings. www.myspace.com/harmmetal, www.battlegod-productions.com

Luxi Lahtinen

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