‘Surf Nicaragua’ is probably the most known song from the band and always a track they play live. This wasn’t different at Into The Grave in Leeuwarden early August. The band did an excellent gig and also played a few new songs. I must admit that they fit in rather well in between their older tracks. I also saw their new guitarist Joey Radziwill (only 22 years old) and he did quite a good job. He replaces Jason Rainey who sadly enough had to step down due to health problems. New guy Joey wasn’t even born yet when the last album Heal was released.
New album Awakening has only 8 songs and with 31 minutes a rather short album. But, rather quality over quantity and lucky enough, the songs are rather good. The opening and title track is a real thrash song, which also can be said about ‘Divide and Conquer’, a very fast song which punches you right in the face. Besides these typical thrash songs, there are also a couple of more groovier tracks. ‘Salvation’, ‘Killing Machine’ and ‘Death Valley’ are examples of that. Besides that, ‘Salvation’ is a very melodic piece, with twin guitars and solos that breath Iron Maiden all along. ‘Manifest Reality’ has a Slayer vibe and could have been on their debut album easily. Another real thrash attack is the shortest on the album: ‘Revolution’, it is also the fastest one. Just before that there is the in my opinion weakest track ‘Death Valley’. It is also the most melodic and slowest, and not typical one you expect from Sacred Reich. Perhaps I just need to get used to it, but at the moment I find it the less interesting one.
With ‘Something To Believe’ the groove is back again and also the melody. Again a track in which Phil shows that he is an o.k. singer. Personally I had hoped for a real heavy thrash hammer to end the album.
All in all, the quality on the album is high, but due to the short length and only 8 songs, I am not overenthusiastic. I had hoped for a few more songs after such a long hiatus, neverthelesst a good comeback album for certain.
2. Divide And Conquer
4. Manifest Reality
5. Killing Machine
6. Death Valley
8. Something To Believe
Playing Time: 31:00
Phil Rind - Vocals & bass
Wiley Arnett - Lead guitars
Dave McClain - Drums
Joey Radziwill - Rhythm guitars