VADER – XXV

To coincide with their 25th year as a band, VADER decided to treat us with re-recordings of their best material spanning their entire discography. While some may say that re-recording tracks loses some of the magic and original distinct sound, one can also say that this two-disc set is refreshing. Old tracks are updated with excellent production, and reworked with the current lineup. When Doc (RIP) left the band, huge shoes needed to be filled, and skeptics wondered if Daray could pull off Doc’s parts, who alone defined and made VADER a unique act. Fear not, as Daray not only pulls off Doc‘s parts, but adds his own touch to the old material.

Like many recent VADER releases, XXV starts off with an intro, which quickly crescendos and blasts our souls with what’s to come. The re-recorded old
tracks hold up very well to current standards – crisp production now allows the listener to appreciate every riff, bass line, and drums as it should have sounded years ago. The only drawback for this fine two-disc album is that some of the newer songs from Litany, Revelations and even The Beast simply did not need to be re-recorded. The newer songs sounded fine on their respective albums, and the re-recorded versions of songs from those albums do not add much, if anything. A few songs, such as “Silent Empire” and “Carnal” did not necessarily need newly added keyboard parts, as they sounded great before. Aside from these minor issues, this is an excellent release for both old and newer VADER fans alike. Old fans get to hear classic songs with clean, polished production, and newer fans get a taste of old songs they probably never would have heard before. Re-recorded songs off Black to the Blind are refreshing to hear, especially since the original had razor thin production.

A few other nice touches included on this release are the guest appearances from the DEAD INFECTION guys helping out on TERRORIZER‘s classic “Fear of Napalm,” and Seth from SEVERE TORTURE providing vocals on “Reborn in Flames.” One last bonus for this release is the previously unreleased tracks “Wyrocznia” and “Tyrani Piekiel.” In this era where file sharing and downloading are the norm, this album is definitely a worthy purchase to add to your collection. (Regain Records)

SEVERE TORTURE – Sworn Vengeance

Much of metal’s evolution in recent years has involved plenty of hydridization of genres, resulting in mixed results. However, Holland’s SEVERE TORTURE have stuck to their guns and kept the spirit of pure death metal alive. The band aim for a balance between technicality and catchiness within a brutal context and they manage to succeed. There’s plenty of substance in Sworn Vengeance with plenty of high quality chunks of meat. Sonically, the record sounds great. Each band member’s contributions are on display in crystal clarity. Sworn Vengeance is competently written and performed, but the material itself just doesn’t reach a level higher than a couple notches above average. There’s nothing overtly wrong or bad about the songs here but they are just not quite good enough to compete with the big fish of the genre. Nevertheless, SEVERE TORTURE have written an album that is still enjoyable and possesses strong attributes. (Earache Records)

SEVERE TORTURE Provides Update on Upcoming Album

SEVERE TORTURE have provided some insight into what fans can expect from their eagerly anticipated forthcoming album Sworn Vengeance, which is due for release in September. Speaking with excitement about the album, SEVERE TORTURE have stated:

“We finished mixing duties last week and the Hertz Studio did an amazing job. The end result literally blew us away. The sheer aggression and power of this album exceeds anything we have done by far and we can’t wait for you guys to hear it.”

The band have given some insight into a track from the album, entitled “Buried Hatchet,” which features their friend Jason from MISERY INDEX and Che from BORN FROM PAIN. SEVERE TORTURE explain that the guest vocalists “dual with Dennis‘ guttural deathgrunts,” which hints that fans can expect an album laden with a high dosage of annihilating tracks.

To find out more about SEVERE TORTURE and Sworn Vengeance head over to:

www.myspace.com/severetorture