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ALBUM REVIEW: Raised On Decay – Shrapnel

SHRAPNEL have been on the threshold of greatness in the thrash metal genre for quite some time now, displaying some incredible live performances including an appearance on the Sophie Lancaster Stage at this year’s Bloodstock Festival but it is now time for them to step out of the shadow of the ‘big guns’ and show everyone why they deserve to be associated with the elite, September 29th will see the Norwich outfit release their 2nd full length studio album entitled Raised On Decay via Candlelight Records/Spinefarm Records.

The album commences with an ominous theatrical introduction which bursts into high tempo riffing, piercing vocals and a variety of evil guitar squeals in the form of Hollow Earth before transitioning into the similarly paced Complete Resection that continues the pounding drums, rapid vocals and overall vicious demeanor. The Boundaries Set follows suit and at this stage the album runs the fine line of becoming very formulaic and predictable but fortunately the thrash metallers switch it up and show their diversity with the punchy, vibrant riffs of Jester which are saturated in groove and possess a catchy, heavy hitting vibe which EXODUS would be proud of really grasping the attention of the listener.

Pariah takes a more methodical approach progressing between bludgeoning, snappy guitar work and frantic death metal influenced ferocity which overflows into the equally unrelenting Echoes Of Emptiness. As Raised On Decay reaches the midway point SHRAPNEL up the ante with the energetic shredding of Carved From Above which will certainly give guitarists Nathan Sadd and Chris Martin an intensive workout with it’s impressive intricacy.

1.0.1 maintains the blistering pace with a belting scream from frontman Jae Hadley combined with pulsating drumming and face melting SLAYER influenced riffing getting the adrenaline flowing before title track Raised On Decay gets your fists pumping with its edgy chorus and groovy melodic tones.

Penultimate track Choir Of Wolves channels a restrained but infectious approach containing some chilling spoken verses which prove to be very effective and in combination with plenty of hooks is guaranteed to have your head banging in preparation for the album to be wrapped up with a perfect rendition of SLAYER’s The Antichrist providing some welcomed nostalgic vibes.

Raised On Decay showcases a haul of heavyweight calibre material which has particular moments of brilliance but with the benchmark being set ludicrously high by their peers a little bit of luck may be involved to ensure that SHRAPNEL are giving the attention and credit they deserve. The incredible talent within the band is undeniable as every song competes to possess the most complex and flamboyant solo work, this combined with the unwavering energy throughout really elevates Raised On Decay above any of their material that came before.

Rating: 8/10

Raised on Decay - Shrapnel

Raised On Decay is set for release on September 29th via Candlelight Records/Spinefarm Records.

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