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Bacteria13
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:27 am    Post subject: DESTRUCTION - ETERNAL DEVASTATION Reply with quote

DESTRUCTION - ETERNAL DEVASTATION

(SPV Records, 1986)



One thing thrash metal has in common is the acoustic intro. Most bands from the 1980's had at least one soft introduction on their albums before the musical mayhem began proper. So it was with Curse the Gods, the monstrous opening track from Destruction's second full-length album, Eternal Devastation. Yet, this was no pleasant acoustic melody, this was twisted, off-tune, and distorted; the anti-intro, if you will. It also prepared the listener for the tumultuous ruckus to come.

CRUNCHCRUNCHCRUNCHCRUNCHCRUNCH ... that guitar sound. It sounded nothing like the Bay Area Exodus/Testament crunch, this was something different entirely. Described best as a 'fortress of noise' in a 4-and-a-quarter K review in Kerrang!, the sheer sound of this album was a joy to behold. Produced by one Manfred Neuner, the Teutonic trio had never sounded (and still don't, truth be known) as vibrant, as vicious as they did here.

This was Destruction's follow-up to 1985's Infernal Overkill, their first studio record hot on the heels of the Sentence of Death mini-album and the last recording featuring original drummer Thomas 'Tommy' Senmann. The line-up was completed with Marcel 'Schmier' Schirmer on bass and vocals and highly underrated guitarist Mike Sifringer. At times I am hard pressed to choose between the two; alongside Kreator's Pleasure to Kill and Slayer's Hell Awaits this was my staple listening diet in 1985/86. And what a diet it was. Confound Games, Eternal Ban, the instrumental Upcoming Devastation and the visceral Confused Mind, 7-tracks of maniac thrash metal that was relentless, in-your-face, throw-yourself-around-the-room thrash, much like the tornado depicted on the album sleeve. Destruction made a huge impact with ED and the metal world rightly sat up and took notice.



In a Metal Forces interview from 1986 Schmier was asked what the reaction to the new record was. They were overall favourable, he replied, adding that "... some stupid people said we were going commercial, but most of our fans have said that it's a lot heavier and that it's better than 'Infernal Overkill.'" When you listen to the blistering United by Hatred it makes one wonder what these 'stupid people' were thinking. "This album is more complex but it's still very fast," he continued. "We tried to make it a lot heavier even in the slower parts and I think we succeeded." Absolutely; Life Without Sense opens with an insane solo before grinding its way towards the finish line. It's hardly the fastest track on the record but surely one of the more memorable on an album brimming with face-shredding riffs.

As mentioned earlier, this was the last record to feature Tommy on drums; soon after recording Destruction were joined by Sodom drummer Witchhunter for the live circuit. They also recruited a second guitarist, Harry, which, according to Schmier and Mike today was the beginning of Destruction's woes regarding line-up changes and musical direction. After Eternal ... they released the technical Mad Butcher EP, followed quickly by their third studio album Release From Agony. And depending who you ask this was either a fantastic album or it wasn't. Certainly, from this listener's point of view Release ..., while still accomplished failed to reach the crushing heights of either Infernal ... or Eternal ..., but that's a debate for another time.

In 1986 the German thrash metal scene was making a name for itself, rivalling (if not bettering) the Americans with the so-called German 'Top Three'; Kreator, Sodom and Destruction. Eternal Devastation was, for its time a force to be reckoned with, and remains a solid classic to this day.

Bacteria13.

Curse the Gods:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8TF4Cj781I

Eternal Ban:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D23CQUAeEXA&feature=related
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