Face The Madness
Review by Felix on August 14, 2021.
I once read a book. Shocking news, isn’t it? It was about Denmark, among other things about the Danish food. The author was moaning that there is nothing as boring as the eating habits of the Danes. In the morning: bread. At lunch: bread. For dinner: bread. Well, I don’t think he was right. But even if this would be the case, who cares? Focus on the thrash exports of this country and you will find many positive aspects. Not only Artillery, but also formations like Battery and Killing who have some aces up their sleeve, too. Given this fact, just ignore the idiotic artwork of Face The Madness and adolescent song titles like 'Kill Everyone'. Instead, concentrate on the music.
Killing are immune against modern influences. Their kind of riffs celebrates the old school of the role models. The guitars deliver a feast of sawing, slicing and chopping. It’s not only the beginning of 'See You In Hell' which catapults the audience 35 years back in time, but it is one of the most impressive sections of the album. The song with the almost classic pun 'Don’t Get Mad, Get Evil' also boasts with raw riffing and a pleasant degree of intensity. Names like Dark Angel and Vio-lence come to my mind- Schmier-like high-pitches vocals appear sporadically. But Killing are clever enough to refer more than just one once pioneering unit. They definitely do not appear as copycats. Instead, their approach is intact. Therefore the band delivers fresh songs (with some pretty cool solos) that just like to be performed in a tried and tested style. Nothing wrong with this, I guess. And the closer 'Killed In Action' surprises with a mid-harsh approach and a high quantum of individuality, even though some of its parts send greetings to Italy’s Necrodeath.
Neither the clear, aggressive and straight-in-your-face production nor the songs disappoint me. You get want you want to get when it comes to a thrash album. Each and every song reaches a good level, some of them even a great one. I am sure you will not think of pressing the skip button during the 40 minutes of this work, because Killing just do not deliver any reason to do so. It feels that they play thrash by conviction and this is something I really like.
Finally, the dudes of Killing seem to proud of their origin. 'Straight Out Of Kattegat' gives the album a patriotic flavour, because the Kattegat is a maritime area between the Danish Jutland and the Swedish west coast. It has a very good configuration, because it grows constantly and intensely, it possesses a quite memorable chorus and scores with an atmospheric beginning and end. Of course, thrash is a more urban style than its blackened cousin from Norway. Consequently, it does not need a lot of atmosphere. However, sometimes it’s a nice addition. And the same can be said about the entire debut. It’s an album that adds value to your collection. It will never conquer the throne of “Reign In Blood”, “Hell Awaits” or “Bonded By Blood”, but it makes much more fun than eating only bread the whole day long.
Rating: 8.1 out of 10603
Review by Michael on June 30, 2021.
Danish quartet Killing is releasing their debut album Face The Madness in August and I must say I've been looking forward to it for months now. What these guys offer to the listener is flawless old school thrash in the style of old Slayer, Kreator and Metallica and with that you can usually lure me out from behind the stove. Although there are bands (especially in the thrash metal scene) which in my opinion just sound artificial and generic, it is not the case with the guys from Mitjylland. Killing bring their songs absolutely convincingly and 100% authentic.
Album starts with 'Kill Everyone', a two-minute thumper that reminds me of Slayer right from the start. 'Before Violence Strikes' is a bit more melodic but doesn't lose any of its aggressiveness throughout. Especially the chorus with the gang shouts is mega catchy and makes you instinctively bang along. 'Don't Get Mad, Get Evil' surprises with its groovy nature and the chorus reminds me of "Death, Sex, Ejaculation" by Marduk. This will definitely be a long-running hit live. 'See You In Hell' starts with a Black Sabbath memorial riff, before guys pick up the tempo again and thrash their way through the song in the style of old Kreator (of the "Extreme Aggression" era), but also have surprising breaks up their sleeves again and again. The riffs and the scream of Rasmus - who often sounds like young Mille on the album – are pure madness and if I didn't know the guys, I would think that we are dealing with real Danish psychopaths here. One of my favorite tracks (and a very cool video) is 'Legion Of Hate' which starts with driving drums, nasty guitars and Tom Araya-like memorial scream. The tempo is kept high throughout the song and only during the breaks the foot is briefly taken off the gas pedal. The song is peppered with cool guitar solos, the whole thing is absolutely catchy and has a slight punk attitude. 'Straight Out Of Kattegat' lets the sea monsters of the Baltic Sea awaken and lay the Danish coast in ruins. Again, a very catchy song, which is located in the mid-tempo range. 'One Last Victim' is the song that brings up the ultimate Slayer feeling. Those who like the albums up to "Seasons In The Abyss" will find themselves in their comfort zone here. The gleeful laughter and Rasmus' high-pitched screams are especially casual here. An absolute neckbreaker!!! '1942' is about the resistance against the German occupation in WW2 and impresses with hectic staccato riffs and mega-fast drums. In the middle part, the song becomes a little quieter and groovier, but it remains the forward-driving melody line. With 'Killed In Action' the band creates a slow, dark track that reminds me a time or two of "Seasons In The Abyss" again and later on of old Metallica (especially "Master Of Puppets"). A perfect conclusion of a (at least in my opinion) great debut.
What remains for me to say as a conclusion? I think that we are dealing with a band that possibly has a great future ahead of them. Face The Madness convinces me throughout the whole album and finds its way onto my MP3 player again and again. When the CD is released, it will also find its way into my stereo. Maybe the production could be improved a bit (sometimes it sounds a bit dull), but that's complaining on a high level!!! Who likes and goes for the mentioned influences, will definitely find nothing wrong with Face The Madness. Support the band and check out the album when it comes out!!
Rating: 9.4 out of 10 sea monsters603