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HOBBS`ANGEL OF DEATH
HOBBS`ANGEL OF DEATH
Heaven Bled
(High Roller Records / Rock Stakk Records)
74:59min

With enthusiasm I started listening to the new delivery of HOBBS’ ANGEL OF DEATH, one of the few remaining stalwart icons of old Thrash Metal. And from the first notes I know I can rest assured nothing went wrong. Peter Hobbs’ voice aged well and still sounds fresh and aggressive, and his Metal is still so killer it is easy to overlook it’s been over two decades since his last full-length album. There's still a lot of SLAYER’s rapid pace and thrashing riffs, still a lot of antichristian blaspheming, and above all, still the same spirit. After all this time, it’s a small wonder that there is an all-new line-up except for the man himself, and it’s a fine job the new musicians do, namely a bassist and drummer from the Italians VIOLENTOR and a guitar player from the Swedes DIE HARD and ONDSKAPT. They aptly perform the kind of eighties-instilled Thrash that is mandatory for HOBBS, with insane fast drumming and rampant guitars. Occasionally some hints of the passage of time can be heard (sometimes the guitars in the titletrack sound a bit on the Black Metal side, for example), but the overwhelming feel to it all is that this is definitely still HOBBS’ ANGEL OF DEATH. That a true old timer of the glorious yesteryears retains to such a degree the flame of old without feeling tempted to slow down or to experiment with different sounds is worthy of the utmost admiration and respect from my side. Besides, in the tradition of old classics, despite the relentless aggressiveness, the album is varied and well composed. After the opening track in which the band shows us it’s lost nothing in metallic legitimacy and thrashing rage, they go on to provide the listener with track after track of talent and skill. It is a long album (not even counting the additional three live tracks in the japanese Rock Stakk version), but it is a ride that fills me with satisfaction. There are moments of sheer brilliance, and standout speedsters like 'Hypocrites' or 'Suicide', but also slower yet strong tracks like the closing 'Abomination' with intricate guitar leads. Also the re-recording of 'Depopulation' (from “Inheritance”) sounds so amazingly good I could hardly believe it… it would have brought tears to my eyes if that weren’t rather gay. May I go on having the chance of seeing HOBBS on stage and listening to his crushing Metal assaults for many years to come. So this is more than recommended! Learn more about this release (like how to get it) at the following sites: www.facebook.com/hobbsangelofdeathofficial, www.hrrecords.de, www.rockstakk.com

Ricardo Campos

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