Saturday, September 18, 2010

Morbid Saint: Spectrum of Death (1988)

Criminally Forgotten

I found out about Wisconsin's Morbid Saint from Metallattorney:
This album features some of the most relentless, brutal assaults on the ears I have heard in thrash metal. Every song should be hailed as a classic. This is truly an amazing album. And yet, very few people even know it exists. Such a shame.
Well, talk about a lukewarm endorsement.

I have to say, I am very much in agreement. Metal reviewers throw the words "blistering" and "assault" around far too often, but here it is well deserved. They slow down ever so slightly a couple of times, but when I say slow down, I mean they're going down to "getting a $200 speeding ticket" from "getting shot at by the police".

They sound a bit more like a Teutonic thrash band than any of their American counterparts, but being from Wisconsin they weren't really part of any of the regional scenes.

The tracks are mostly under 3 minutes, with two 7 minute tracks thrown in for good measure. The riffs change often, and solos are all over the place. Some of the best moments are a solo in "Burned at the Stake", the intro and a solo to "Crying for Death", and album closer "Beyond the Gates of Hell".

I found some conflicting information on the album's extensive release history, but it's been reissued at least five times. Yeah, an album nobody's ever heard of, from a band nobody's ever heard of, has been reissued five times. Twice in the last five years. This is in high demand.

The Verdict: The American Midwest is not exactly known for metal, but sometimes the best stuff comes from the least expected places. This album is an incredible half hour, one you should get your hands on if you can (you may have to buy MP3's like I did). I give it 5 out of 5 stars.

It's only too bad these guys haven't released another album--yet. Hey, Cynic went 15 years, and Morbid Saint is back together, so let's keep our fingers crossed.

1 comment:

  1. One of these days, it needs to be released in a number sufficient to satisfy most of the people looking for it. This is truly a great thrash metal album.