THE TROOPS OF DOOM
Antichrist Reborn
(Alma Mater Records)
39:41min

After their two EPs “The Rise Of Heresy” (2020) and “The Absence Of Light” (2021) Brazilian Death / Thrashers THE TROOPS OF DOOM have finally come up with their debut full length album, which they fittingly entitled “Antichrist Reborn”. If you’re familiar with this four-piece already, you’ll of course easily notice the reference to SEPULTURA, the band in which guitarist Jairo “Tormentor” Guedz started his musical career, back in the early 80s, during their “Bestial Devastation” and “Morbid Visions” days. But that is just one of all the little connections to his glorious past. If you check out the “Antichrist Reborn” cover artwork a bit closer you’ll also notice the devil from SEPULTURA’s debut “Bestial Devastation” in the background again. This had already been done for the cover of “The Rise Of Heresy”, but this time it’s a bit more special since the artwork for “Antichrist Reborn” was created by none other than former CHAKAL bass player Sérgio Oliveira, who also created the original “Bestial Devastation” cover. I will come back to yet another SEPULTURA connection a bit later. But first of all, let’s talk a bit about the music now. ‘Dethroned Messiah’ kicks off the album pretty fast, in best classic SLAYER tradition (riffs and drumming), but you’ll also notice elements of “Arise” era SEPULTURA, while the slower section even cites good old CELTIC FROST (the choice of the song title somehow already suggested something like that). All in all a great opener for sure! Next up is ‘Far From Your God’, again with some classic SLAYER influences (‘Die By The Sword’ as well as ‘South Of Heaven’), but the song has enough uniqueness to it, so that you can’t just label it as a straight SLAYER thrasher. For ‘Altar Of Delusion’ you’ll also find a video on YouTube, so you can quickly check it out yourself. The song has a leading melody line (which a band like UNLEASHED would most certainly be very proud of), that got mixed in an overall pretty fast and crushing song. ‘Grief’ is a short instrumental that could easily be a part of a horror movie soundtrack, followed by ‘Pray Into The Abyss’, a song that opens with a spoken part, then changes into SLAYER – esque guitar work again until it explodes in the classic SEPULTURA style. One thing (about many) that I really appreciate about THE TROOPS OF DOOM are the vocals of Alex Kafer. This guy sounds brutal, but his lyrics are always clearly understandable, which fits their old school style just perfectly and way better than any type of deep guttural grunts would do. ‘The Rebellion’ and ‘Deserters From Paradise’ are next, two more straight ahead fast thrashers. The opening guitar melody of the latter reminds me a bit of SEPULTURA’s ‘Mass Hypnosis’. ‘Apocalypse MMXXII’ is a short instrumental interlude which leads into ‘A Queda’, the only song on the album with Spanish lyrics (which just sounds great to me!), before ‘Preacher’s Paradox’ ends the approximately fourty minutes of total Death / Thrash Metal devastation. The production is great, everything sounds very powerful, but not too modern or clinical and every instrument is equally audible, just as it should be. Peter Tägtgren took care of the mix at his Abyss Studio and the mastering was done by Jonas Kjellgren at Blacklounge Studio, Sweden. So the band was definitely in experienced hands here. In the good old THE TROOPS OF DOOM tradition there’s also some cover songs as bonus tracks on the CD edition of “Antichrist Reborn” as well. This time you’ll get ‘The Usurper’ (CELTIC FROST) and ‘Necromancer’ (SEPULTURA), which unfortunately weren’t part of my review copy (thus not part of the mentioned playing time here either). So, here we have the aforementioned last SEPULTURA connection. After re-recordings of ‘Bestial Devastation’, ‘Troops Of Doom’ (on “The Rise Of Heresy”) and ‘Antichrist’ (on “The Absence Of Light”) this is already the fourth classic SEPULTURA track that has been revitalized by THE TROOPS OF DOOM with a lot of class. There’s also guest contributions on the album from João Gordo (RATOS DE PORÃO), Alex Camargo and Moyses Kolesne (both from KRISIUN), but unfortunately I am lacking more info which songs they appear on, so I can’t tell you more about it. And while we’re just doing some name dropping, here’s another one: Alma Mater Records, the record label that puts out “Antichrist Reborn”, is being run by MOONSPELL’s Fernando Ribeiro. The man definitely has taste! In conclusion I can say that THE TROOPS OF DOOM once again didn’t disappoint at all and have proven, that they can also easily write an impressive full length album with no fillers. Highly recommended! For more band information check out www.facebook.com/thetroopsofdoom, for ordering details please visit www.almamaterrecords.com

Frank Stöver

Frank Stöver

Related reviews / interviews:
THE TROOPS OF DOOM - The Abscense Of Light (Anders Peter Jørgensen)
THE TROOPS OF DOOM - The Rise Of Heresy (Jarne Brauns)
THE TROOPS OF DOOM - Interview (Wedekind Gisbertson)
THE TROOPS OF DOOM - Interview (Frank Stöver / Steven Willems)

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