the long awaited new Annihilator CD is finally in the mail from AFM
Records! And Annihi-mastermind Waters rewards the wait with a hammer of
a thrash album that wipes the slate clean and starts over. With elements
of both “Alice in Hell”, “Never Neverland” and “Set the World
on Fire”, by most regarded as the reference work from the Canadians,
“Schizo Deluxe” is a lesson in quality riffing, virtuosity and
heaviness with a pop twist.
is Dave Padden’s second studio recording with Annihilator, and this
time around he proves to be the right choice, more so than he did on
last year’s “All For You” where his impressive vocal range
wasn’t utilised as much as it could (probably isn’t on this one
either, but he’s more “there” on “Schizo Deluxe”). And the
songs are simply better – better than they’ve been for years. The
same can be said about the production of the disc, the sound is warm and
“Maximum Satan” for the most part consists of a straight-forward
heavy mid-tempo groove, and sports a catchy chorus that should go down
well live. “Drive” is one of Annihilator’s fastest songs ever, and
“Warbird” is a cool thrasher with an edge.
Zombies” is a comment on the exposure of violence to children and also
great thrashy piece with a quiet midsection. “Invite It” combines
thrash with melodic vocal lines and likewise soli – one of
Annihilator’s true strengths, when you ask me. “Like Father, Like
Gun” is a change in mode to a dirty boogie thrash, again with a chorus
that’ll work perfectly in a live setting.
holds a riff that could be from “Alice In Hell”. Razor sharp stuff,
ladies and gentlemen, combined with Padden’s raw and clean voice,
it’s good clean family fun.
Far Gone”, the heaviest tune on the album, is sung by Mr. Waters
himself, and therefore automatically leads the mind back to “King of
the Kill”, only this time, as I’ve said before, the songs are just
better. The intriguing theme riff that goes through this song is to die
for, by the way – one that stays in your head for days.
toying with sanity has been there from the beginning of Annihilator’s
career, and this album is no exception. The track “Clare” picks up
that thread and is perfectly executed by Padden who masters the insane
growls as Randy Rampage did (the comparison stops right there – Padden
is by far the better singer) as well as the pop choruses as Aaron
Randall did on STWOF. The nice and twisted little love story
“Something Witchy” closes the ball.
this album doesn’t bring Annihilator back on everyone’s lips, then
you can call me Hugo* - Jeff Waters means business this time.
* Exceptions to this would be my family, close friends, the Powermetal.dk staff as well as my colleagues…