Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Toxic Holocaust: Chemistry of Consciousness (2013)

So, I Guess I Like Thrash Again

Chemistry of Consciousness, the latest of black/thrash icon Toxic Holocaust, is the perfect soundtrack to mindless excitement. I played the whole thing while rough-housing with my kids. Does that make me the world’s lamest metalhead, or the world’s coolest dad? Or both? You can debate the point with my toddler son’s plush Cthulhu.

Toxic Holocaust is a long-time favorite of regular guest contributor Metallattorney. Ordinarily I would just pass this promo on to him, but since he’s been swamped with a house move and business concerns, I decided to review the band’s new record myself. Once again, I find myself blown away by my first real exposure to one of Metallattorney’s recommendations.

Over the course of this year I’ve once again fallen in love with the unpretentious side of metal. I’ve always had a love of Venom and Motörhead, but until recently that’s been overshadowed by my love of Opeth and Agalloch. Thrash once bored me to tears with its sameness and predictability, but those primal feelings once elicited by “Whiplash” have returned. Cue silly reference tying the album title to the change in my attitude.

Every song (save one) is under 3 minutes, every song follows essentially the same handful-of-riffs, verse-chorus-verse-then-maybe-a-solo kind of songwriting. They’re all blackened thrash riffs and vocals, textbook but not retro, and I love the album for it. It has the energy and vitality that propelled the Bay Area to greatness 30 years ago, and that’s all it really needs.

The Verdict: 4 out of 5 stars


  1. Replies
    1. it rules. Top 5 at least for me.

    2. Nice. I wouldn't put it that high, but it does indeed rule. It would probably crack the top 25 for me, and considering how many albums I've listened to this year, that's saying something.

  2. Great album. Having been running this pretty hard for the last couple of weeks.

    Touring Australia in April 2014!